The Art of Donald Trump’s Con

This just in:  Trump has failed at nearly every business undertaking except for real estate.  If he had taken his dad’s money and just invested it in a Stock Market Index Fund, he would be worth more than 3 times what he is reportedly worth today.  He has declared bankruptcy several times.  Within the last decade, he has found that banks in the United States would no longer loan him money.  He turned to Russia and now appears to be cash-rich.  He started buying properties at market price and then, without making any improvements, sold those properties to Russians for huge profits; a practice most often associated with money laundering.

Take all of this in and then ask yourself, “Is Trump a genius or a con man?  Is Trump laundering money with help from Russia?  Is there a link between Trump’s benevolent attitude towards Russia and his financial dependence upon them?”

Let’s put all of that aside.  Forget about it.

I now have a new question: Is Trump a genius negotiator or an idiot?  In other words, is he a legitimate president or just a con man?

Let’s look at the deals he’s been involved with since taking office.

Healthcare:  He promised much better healthcare at much lower prices.  It turns out that neither he, nor the Republican Party had a plan.  In fact, Trump has no idea how healthcare works.  He claimed he was going to fix it without knowing what he was talking about.

NAFTA:  Trump calls this the “worst deal ever,” and claims he will negotiate a much better deal for us.  It turns out that his threats to back out of NAFTA have caused two of our top trading partners to look elsewhere for goods.  Trump has never given any indication that he understands what is even in NAFTA.

TPP:  This is another deal Trump calls “the worst deal ever.”  He says this without once mentioning a single thing he does not like or would change.  He apparently does not understand TPP any more than he understands NAFTA or Healthcare.  He calls previous deals “the worst deal ever” so his followers can nod in agreement and pretend, along with Trump, that he has a plan.

Paris Climate Accord:  Another deal that is the “worst ever.”  Trump has demonstrated that he has no idea what is in this agreement saying, “He wants to negotiate a fairer deal for the United States,” even though everything in the accord is voluntary.  If we want to participate less or pay less, then we can.

The Iran Non-Nuclear deal:  Again, “the worse deal ever.”  Trump has been saying the Iranians violated the deal by testing missiles.  Clearly, he didn’t understand that Iran is free to test missile within the bounds of the agreement.  Every other country that joined with the United States on this deal has urged Trump to stay with the agreement.  Instead, Trump is stepping away.

All these deals were already made.  The United States had already agreed to them.  What Trump has done is renege on these deals without understanding even the basics about the deals and having no alternative.  Why?  So he could pretend that he could fix things.

But let’s continue…

Trump is imposing tariffs without understanding the very basics about such an action.  He appears to know less about Economics than someone who has just completed their first week of Econ 101.

Trump supported a tax reform plan that gives virtually nothing to the middle class while enriching the top 1% of the population. In this instance, I’m not sure if he doesn’t understand the tax break or if he did this on purpose.  Notably, there was a last minute “pass through” issue that basically enriches anyone in the real estate business…like Trump.

The Con continues as Trump takes credit for progress between North and South Korea.  He does this expecting us to believe that his tweets about “Rocket Man” have brought the North to its knees.  He has done nothing to help in that part of the world.  Even North Korea says Trump has had nothing to do with the denuclearization talks going on now.

Trump has the Black Midas Touch.  Everything he does make things worse.  His EPA is dismantling itself; allowing for the rapid rise in nearly every area of pollution.  He’s weakened consumer protection.  He’s alienated NATO allies.  He’s shown racist tendencies and legitimatized the rise of white supremacy.  He’s actively supported the NRA while calling for “thoughts and prayers” and armed gym teachers as solutions to violence in schools.   He thinks saying “don’t do drugs” will cure the opioid crisis.  He thinks telling teens “don’t have sex” will lower teen pregnancy.

Notice all of this exists in addition to the Russian Collusion allegations or Trump’s constant lying.

This guy is a train wreck…and we put him in charge.

Just sayin…

Gotta run.  It’s time to save the world.

Up, up and away…

Jim

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I was wrong…imagine that!

This just in:  For basically forever, I have said that the president cannot be held responsible for the economy; at least in the short run (less than a year).

I remember Obama taking over in 2004 and a week later, the Republican Party blamed him for the millions of jobs lost during the Bush administration.  They blamed him if gas prices went up for a month.  They blamed him if the stock market took a 1-day dip.  They blamed him if unemployment went up.  All of this was blamed on him after about 20 minutes in office.

My response was to say, “Hey, Congress passes the laws.  Congress passes the budget.  Our economy is huge and cannot turn on a dime.  The president doesn’t have the power to change the economy very much and has zero ability to change anything economically in the short run.”

Turns out I was wrong…

Trump, all by himself (as the Republican Party acts as if they are busy elsewhere) has managed to tank our economy in about a year.  Yes, we are not in a recession…yet; however, the table has been set for us to begin a steep downward slide into insignificance.

He started with using his executive powers to drop us out the the Trans Pacific Partnership.  This effectively put billions of customers out of reach for our products.  He then started trying to renegotiate NAFTA; a partnership that involves our biggest trading partner, Canada.  Then he started exporting undocumented workers.  Yes, he broke up families but it also sent cheap labor out of the country.  This didn’t create high-paying jobs in the the tech industry.  What it did do was raise the price you pay for nearly everything you buy in a grocery store.

Now it’s tariffs.  It took about a week for a trade war with China to go nuclear.  A trade war with another country is like having a starvation diet competition with your neighbor.  You both suffer until one of you dies.  When that happens, the remaining person can say, “I won” as his body lays crippled on a hospital gurney.  Expect inflation; the inevitable result of a trade war.  Expect higher interest rates; the inevitable result of inflation.  Expect your home value to drop; the inevitable result of high interest rates.

The stock market is having its worst quarter since the Great Depression.  This is all the result of one man….Donald Trump.  A man fooling with our economy that was once called “the dumbest student I ever had” by his college economics professor.

Trump does not know what is in the tax bill he signed.  Trump does not know what is in the Trans Pacific Partnership.  Trump does not know what is in NAFTA. Trump does not understand tariffs or international trade in general.  Trump even famously asked Flynn, his then National Security Advisor, “What’s the difference between a strong dollar and a weak dollar?”

And yet…he is in charge.

So…I was wrong.  The president can have a major impact on the economy.

Score one for the big Cheeto in the White House.

Time to save the world.

Up, up and away…

Jim

Note: I drop out of Facebook on 1 May.  If you want to still read these posts (for some reason), make sure you subscribe in the right sidebar.  Also, I will no longer be able to post these blogs on Facebook so if you think others might like the content, from time to time, please repost.

j

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A short list of Trump’s Troubles

This just in:  I was wondering about what Trump thinks of as he starts each day.  What are his priorities?  His goals?  Then it occurred to me that he must have very little time to do anything other than Damage Control.  I would like to think “Poor Trump.  He tries so hard and yet the world is against him.”  However, I think that most, if not all, of his troubles are of his own making.

Let’s take a look at them…

  • Colluding with Russia during the 2016 election has to be high on his list of troubles.  This is not an illegal thing unless there was a Quid Pro Quo; unless he promised them favors in exchange for their help.
  • The Mueller investigation seems to be expanding.  Mueller has the ability to investigate anything that arises as a result of his initial investigation into Russian Collusion.  This has given birth to a whole family of problems.
  1. Trump’s extensive Russian connections are being discovered.
  2. Trump’s finances are being investigated.
  3. Trump’s daughter and son-in-law are being investigated.
  4. Money laundering comes up a lot
  5. Dealings with Russian banks is a constant; especially when they found ways to loan him money when normal banks would not.
  6. Several of his closest associates have been indicted including his Senior Security Advisor and his campaign manager.  It’s as if everyone Trump worked with in his campaign is associated with Russia.
  7. Obstruction charges are likely to be brought simply because Trump has and is actively trying to stop the investigation.  This includes firing the head of the FBI as well as constant pressure to get his Attorney General to quit.

But wait…there is more outside of the Russia stuff…

  • Trump has dropped the U.S. out of the Paris Climate Accord, leaving our seat at the head of the table empty, until China stepped in.
  • Trump has dropped the U.S. out of the Trans Pacific Partnership, leaving our seat at the head of the table empty, until China stepped in.  (China is not part of the TPP but is suddenly a major player in the regions economics and will likely join the TPP soon).
  • Trump has pissed on Canada and Mexico by trying to renegotiate NAFTA even though he apparently has no idea what that means.
  • Trump lies constantly which really highlights “Oh what a tangled web we weave.”  He seems to have overcome the burden of remembering his lies by simply not caring about them. However, his international credibility is shot; especially since he recently announced he intentionally likes to Canada’s PM.
  • The EU is putting together plans to ramp up a trade war after Trump fired the first shot with needless tariffs.
  • The Deficit is starting to shoot up and out of control following the recent tax plan; a plan that gives billions to the richest among us and virtually nothing to the poor and middle class.
  • The mid-term elections are shaping up to be a runaway for the Democrats if recent special elections are any indicator.  Republicans are being dumped right and left as the country observes their complicit behavior when it comes to Trump’s misdeeds.
  • An analytical firm that played a very major role in Trump’s election was recently outed as a company willing do just about anything to get their client elected.  Just by being associated with this company has cost Facebook $50 billion in the last 48 hours.  Trump, Russia, Bannon and Kershner all have their thumbs in this toxic pie.
  • A pornstar is about to spill the beans on Trump.  Watch 60 minutes this Sunday.
  • Trump got tens of millions of dollars from the NRA who is now being investigated for taking money from Russia and passing it along to Trump.  The is made worse by the fact that a bunch of teenagers noticed that the NRA is apparently a terrorist organization.
  • Trump is under criticism for his “brilliant” plan to fight the opioid crisis with a combination of commercials and death sentences.
  • Trump’s cabinet is experiencing the highest turnover in modern history with insiders describing Trump’s organization as being “in chaos.”

So, he wakes up to Russia, to money laundering, to questionable associations, to a world now led by China and to at least one pornstar.

Which of these are not of his own making.

Time to save the world.

Up, up and away…

Jim

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