Trump’s Nasty and Insulting Tweets

Just like the Fakies award, there should be the Nasties awards.  This is the targets (people, places and things) which Trump has insulted on Twitter since becoming elected President.

The New York Times went through all his tweets since being elected.  Trump’s  #1 target is:  Mainstream media.  I came to this conclusion by measuring the column length, which came to roughly 2 full columns for Mainstream Media.  This group is, according to his tweets, “The enemy of the American people.”  Of course, this comes from the #1 Liar of the Year in 2016 and 2017, according to

Here’s a quick sampling of the mainstream media tweets: “Fake reporting, dishonest, FAKE NEWS, very corrupt, talks about anything negative or that can be turned into the negative.”   While dishonest and corrupt are widely used,  Trump really likes to the word “fake”  but on occasion uses “phony” and “fabricated.”  There is fake news, off course, by also “fake media” and “phony stories” as in “phony Russian stories.”

As one would expect,  the most numerous  insulting tweets at the news media, as I measured by column length,  are aimed at the New York Times,  Washingon Post, CNN and NBC.    Everything has an adjective associated with it,  and in this case, it is the “failing New York Times” which I’ve already reported is doing just fine.  MSNBC is “unwatchable”  – this is an actual word (highest viewership for cable network, with 1.5 million viewers outranking Fox Network).    ABC news was attacked as “Fiction writers, Fake News, Fake News, Fake News, totally wrong in General E, totally biased, fake news, such dishonesty!”  And amazingly, ABC has  the fewest insulting tweets.

Everyone has a name.   Joe Scarborough of the Morning Joe program, was called “Psycho Joe” by Trump.  Scarborough would seem to be a natural supporter of Trump as he was an elected Republican congressman for 6 years from Florida.  Co-host Mika Brzezinski is “dumb as a rock, was bleeding badly from a face-lift, low I.Q., crazy.”   Really nasty stuff.  I note that she has been a reporter for 28 years, a graduate of Georgetown University and author of 3 books.

There are a lot of obvious targets,  the Democrats, Obama, and Hillary Clinton.   Democrats are the  “obstructionist Dems.”  It is always “Crooked Hillary.”  For Obama, he has a lot of insulting tweets, including “How low has President Obama gone to tap my phone during the very sacred election process.  A NEW LOW” which we know was a completely false accusation.  Trump refers to Obama as “Weak! Terrible! Bad (or sick) guy.”  Obama questioned Trump’s temperament to be President. He had a point.

What might surprise people, are how many times he’s insulted Republicans and those in high positions in his cabinet.  “Sloppy Steve” refers to his former chief strategist, Steve Bannon, who was Trump’s key policy adviser reporting directly to Trump.  On Bannon, Trump tweeted,  “Sloppy Steve cried when he got fired, begged for his job. Sloppy Steve has been dumped like a dog by almost everyone,  Sloppy Steve leaker.”   Trump really boiled over after Michael Wolfe’s book, Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House was published. “Steve Bannon has nothing to do with me or my presidency,” Mr. Trump said. “When he was fired, he not only lost his job, he lost his mind.”

Other Republicans subject to insulting tweets were Bob Corker, Mitch McConnell,  Rand Paul, Lisa Murkowski (Rep Senator from Alaska)  and John McCain.   Within the Executive Branch, insultees include AG Jeff Sessions,  Rob Rosenstein  and Andrew McCabe,  Deputy Director of the FBI.   He has really nasty tweets on fired FBI Director James Comey.

A very recent tweet target is Michael Wolff who wrote a critical book on the time period immediately following the election to now, and is now #1 on Amazon’s best seller list, likely helped by Trump’s tweet, “mentally deranged author, knowingly writes false information.”

Stay tuned,




The Churchill Movie “Darkest Hour”

The film “Darkest Hour” is enjoyable and well crafted.   It has been nominated for 6 Academy Awards including best picture and best actor.   It has already won many awards (see link at end).

The film bothers me, but perhaps my problem is with the genre of “docudrama” and the blurring of reality and fiction.  It has been called historical fiction, which is really a mishmash of what happened many years ago, and what film makers conveniently invented.   The life of Winston Churchill has been so well documented, that what did not happen is very clear to historians, but not the general audience.   I think a bit of embellishment of characters is fine,  but there should be limits.    The movie, I believe, just went too far in the fiction department.

The subway (or “Underground”) ride is total fiction.  I won’t go into all the details, but for those who are interested, I’ve included a good article from Slate, as written by a professor of history.  The fictional Churchill was conflicted on whether to negotiate with Hitler and needs to ride the subway to connect with the countrymen and their views.  In this  one short episode, the producers  severely mischaracterized both Churchill and the mood of the English commoner at the time (see Slate article).

To spice up the movie version of history,  Lord Halifax and Neville Chamberlain are conspiring to end Churchill reign by a vote of no confidence.    Never happened, and the whole conspiracy stuff is a great example of crossing the line.

The Academy Awards occur on March 4, 2018.  Despite my protests, the film may very well win the Academy Awards.  It might not be that bad, as it will stimulate interest in the life of Churchill.


Stay tuned,




Flu Vaccinations

Two of my friends got the flu.  I got my flu shot about two weeks ago.  The flu season is just about over with, but I feel better getting the shot.  I plan to do the same this year, but to get it in September, so I’m covered for the whole season.   I started to read up on the flu, after I got the shot.  The flu virus mutates from season to season, so scientists have to predict in advance what strain of virus will be present about six months ahead.   There’s a double dose vaccination which is recommended for seniors (age 65 and over).   I’ll probably go for this.

In February 2017,  scientists at the Center for Disease Control, made an educated guess as to the particular strain would be around in the fall.    They chose the right strain (most prevalent strain), but in the production of the virus, there were mutations, making the vaccinations less effective.  This explains why my friend got the flu, even though she had been vaccinated.  It still lowered her chances of getting the flu, but it’s not perfect.  The CDC and many other scientists at research centers are working to correct this production problem.

Although not perfect, people are always better off getting the shot.  A popular misconception is that the vaccine might give you the flu.  This likely comes from cases where people have been vaccinated and then soon after,  got flu symptoms.  It takes about 2 weeks before the vaccination is effective.  The vaccination does not contain any live virus.  It has antigens, which stimulate the creation of antibodies in the body to fight off the flu virus.  See CDC link at the bottom of the page.

I got my shot at a CVS Pharmacy, without any appointment.   They were quick and professional.  I had no side effects.  Insurance paid for everything. More time was spent filling out the paperwork than getting the shot.

I wanted to get the flu shot, because as I get older, I have a real hard time getting over a cold.  I figured trying to shake the flu would be 10 times harder.   The flu makes you terribly weak, and if you have someone taking care of you, you put them in danger of getting the flu.    Some people go to their doctors to get medications for the flu.  The stuff they sell without a prescription work against bacterial infections not the virus itself.

The only thing I regret is not getting it done earlier.

The best info comes from the CDC.   See the following link:

Stay tuned,


Fact Checkers are needed more than ever

Donald Trump is exactly right when he says there is a lot of “fake news” out there.   I prefer to use the term, incorrect information or misleading statements, so I don’t make any claims that the sources are fabricating stories.    This is completely different from honest mistakes, which seems to be what the 10 of the 11 fakies award, handed out by Donald Trump, about a week ago.  Trump is the last person to be handing out the fakies, as he is most deserving of one.

Fact checkers don’t go after mistakes.  If Trump tweets something in the morning, and later in the day, he corrects himself, it’s not worth evaluating the original tweet.  It is the establishment of a collection of misleading information through repetition in various forums, particularly in non-critical settings, without any acknowledgement of facts to the contrary,  that is  most dangerous.    It also takes an audience that is willing to accept convenient misleading and typically oversimplified information over the truth.   I think John Kennedy had it right, when he said at the Yale commencement speech  of 1962,

“The greatest enemy of the truth is very often not the lie – deliberate, contrived and dishonest, but the myth – persistent, persuasive and unrealistic.  Too often we hold fast to the cliches of our forebearers.  We subject all facts to a prefabricated set of interpretation.  We enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought.”

Trump has created many collections of myths and if it were not for the fact checking websites, we might never know about them.   PolitiFact’s 2017 Lie of the Year award is given to Donald Trump, for claiming Russian election interference is a “made-up story.”  According to the Washington Post Fact Checker, Trump also made !many misleading claims about the investigation into possible Russian interference in the 2016 election, claiming 44 times a variation of the statement that it was a hoax perpetuated by Democrats.

According to the Washington Post Fact Checkers, “One year after taking the oath of office, President Trump has made 2,140 false or misleading claims, according to The Fact Checker’s database that an alyzes, categorizes and tracks every suspect statement uttered by the president. That’s an average of nearly 5.9 claims a day.”  Pretty mind blowing!

Oxford Dictionaries selected “post-truth” as its word of the year and defined it as the state of affairs when “objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.”

I guess a post-truth society would be one where the truth is smothered by an overload of myths from various sources.   If this is where we stand, I guess that’s about  it for democracy.   I hope not.  The post-truth marketers have a lot of money on their side.

No true journalist works for a strictly social media company.  They work for news organizations.  Subscribers to the New York Times, Washington Post, Financial Times, etc pay good money to get reliable information.  Obtaining the truth   takes some time and effort.

I like the following sites for fact checking. 

Washington Post – Fact Checkers

I subscribe to the digital Washington Post access now just $100 per year, which I consider to be a real bargain.  I think the Washington Post more recent discussion of the “themed myths” such as the Russian interference witch hunt,  the Obastmacare collapse,  or economic achievements which Trump has falsely taken credit for, when they really occurred or were in progress during Obama’s term.

Washington Post made a great summary of the misleading or false statements made during 2017.    They count

As I was compiling this fact checker list,  I did a general Google search and uncovered an organization helping to keep the fact checkers honest and open through full disclosure and a vetting process.  The organization is called  Poynter Institute (   It was amazing how many websites are involved in fact checking throughout the world.  All of the above sites are listed by Poynter Institute as passing their vetting process.  In addition, the weekly standard fact checker ( and the AP fact checker ( passed the vetting process.   There are others on their list, with most of them based outside the US.

Stay tuned,


PS.  Just as I was about to hit that “Publish Icon”  Trump declared that Mexico was the most dangerous country in the world.  Politifact considers this mostly false, but  Mexico leads the world in the number of journalists murdered.  See link below:






Trump’s Popularity

Since the start of his presidency, Trump has gotten fairly low approval ratings from Gallup Poll, generally between 33 to 45% approval ratings.  But this isn’t the worst ratings by far.   Harry Truman (22%) and George W. Bush (25%) still hold the record in lowest  approval ratings during their time in office.

There is a tendency to relate Trump’s popularity to the news of the day, and I think this is unwarranted from survey data.  Basically,  the distinguishing feature of Trump’s approval rating has been how little reaction there has been to any news, positive or negative.   The graph below comes from an excellent website, which combines polls from various organizations.   I also examined the Gallup poll on approval ratings which has very similar results.

I consider two periods,  a declining trend from around 45% to 38% approval in the first 6 months of his presidency, and then basically a flat period after that. The intersection of these two trendlines is shown as July 10, 2017  is a bit arbitrary, and one can easily make a case for the flat period beginning weeks before or after this date.


Survey results will vary because the polling uses a very small sample (usually less than 2,000) and organizations will conduct surveys in different ways.  In the graph above, the range of results is shown in the lightly colored red and green shading.   The surveys are estimates of how the larger population feels about the president, approve, disapprove or no opinion/unsure.    This larger population can be the entire adult population of the US,  or the registered voters or those residents who are likely to vote in an election.  Which population is targeted can make a difference.

The links below provide good summaries of approval rating polls of President Trump for the different organizations.   One of the more surprising aspects is the variation of  the “unsure” group, from 1% to 12%.    There may  be a number of reasons for this variation.  An automated telephone poll may only allow for people to respond as approve, disapprove or unsure, while a live pollster may attempt to coax out of a respondent, a disapproval or approval rating.

The “Doubling” Story from Breitbart – Fox – Trump

Breitbart news (an online news service, which is known to be highly supportive of Trump’s policies) recently declared, “Donald Trump’s Support Among Blacks Has Doubled Since 2016, Amid Racism Claims”   followed by “Two new polls show President Donald Trump’s rising support among black voters, highlighting his political gains from pushing employers to hire Americans instead of lower-wage migrants.”   This quickly went from Breitbart to Fox News to a White House tweet as follows:

Unemployment for Black Americans is the lowest ever recorded. Trump approval ratings with Black Americans has doubled. Thank you, and it will get even (much) better! @FoxNews

By any measure, approval ratings for Trump are very low among blacks.  The “doubling” result came from using an exit poll, which showed 8% of blacks voted for Trump as compared with a recent poll by Survey Monkey, showed a 17% approval rating from black respondents.  One survey was with actual voters, and the second was done by a different organization (Survey Monkey) picking people at random from the entire population, so the results are not comparable.   Gallup polls showed Trump’s approval rating among blacks was highest just after the election (about 15%) and in the range of 10 to 14% for the next four months.  In the last six months, the approval ratings are in the range of 6 to 11% without a discernible trend.   The average in the last six months (June to December) appears to be about 8%.  When consistent survey results are compared, there is no doubling of approval, as claimed by President Trump, who was quoting Fox News, who was quoting Breitbart.

The last polling data released from Gallup on black Americans a 6% approval for the time period of Dec 25 – 31, 2017.   There’s a lot of apparent random variation in the survey numbers so I wouldn’t read much into this number, as opposed to the six month trend of 8% approval.

We tend to vote by Party and stay loyal to this party

My main point, is that if you look at either polls focused on the population in general, registered voters or specific groups, such as black Americans, there hasn’t been much variation, except what one would expect from survey inaccuracies.

Based on Gallup data,  approximately 80% of Republicans approve of Trump, while only 8% of Democrats approve of Trump.   If the country is split 50:50 between Republicans and Democrats, this would give Trump an approval rating of 44%,  which is what he had at the beginning of his term.  The 2016 popular vote, would certainly support the idea of a nearly even split  between parties.   So, each party must some how win over the undecided vote, while still maintaining their base.

I tend to believe Trump supporters voted consistently for Republicans, while Clinton supporters voted consistently for Democrats.  So,  it’s more of a loyalty to the party’s agenda than the individual running the country,.

Generic Balloting

The polling organizations are attempting to assess the outcome of  the  2018 Congressional Elections by asking respondents,  whether they would be likely to vote for candidates from the Republican or Democratic party.   The question posed to respondents may also be which party they would like to see control Congress.  This is referred to as Generic  Ballot.   So far, polling has shown Democrats lead Republicans (46% to 39%),  but a lot can change before November.   In the last few weeks, Republicans seem to be edging higher, but there is a lot of variation in the data, so it would be very premature to consider this a trend.

Stay tuned,




amzn hq2?

Just in case, you haven’t a clue of what I’m talking about,  it’s the second headquarters for Amazon.  Right now, Amazon headquarters is in Seattle.  The second headquarters is going to be big.   The New York Times reports:

The winner could get up to 50,000 high-paying jobs and $5 billion in investment, figures that Amazon has dangled in front of local officials, setting off an unprecedented competition to be the second home for one of the internet’s mightiest companies.

The top 20 cities have been announced.   See list at the end of the blog.

When Amazon finally decides, all the mayors will be seated in a room, and Tyra Banks will call out each of them, flash a couple pictures of their city, and tell them why they just didn’t have the right stuff to be the next  HQ2  (i.e.  well, your  airport was ok, but there was just a bit too much crime and your air smells a bit funny, so Pittsburgh you’re out).  I’m joking of course.

Amazon will make each city  beg to be HQ2, so it won’t be Washington, DC.    If they want smart people, they will go for Austin or Boston.  I’m guessing it will be an east coast city, with large international airports.   Toronto would be good in almost every respect, except the weather.  So, the winner in my opinion is:  Atlanta, GA.  A runner up choice is  Raleigh, NC.  Amazon also lists Northern Virginia in the top 20 cities, which is possible.   Yeah, I know there is no city called Northern Virginia, but with Bezo’s billions, Virginia would build one.   These are the compromise choices, half way between New York and Miami.   The sleeper would be Newark, where of course, nobody in their right mind would pick, unless all they cared about is tax breaks and being top dog in the area.  Amazon audiobook division, Audible, is in Newark.

I’m figuring Atlanta is best for executives, who are hoping on flights to Europe, Africa and Asia.  The future is about distribution.    But, just for the record, I think Toronto, Northern Virginia, Raleigh and (oh no) Newark are still in the running.  Newark would kind of being like Tyra Banks picking the ugliest model to be the next Top Model.   It really could happen, but it would be obvious to everyone they were paid off (in tax breaks)  for this choice.

— Update,  just as I posted my choice,  Yahoo – Finance posted their predictions, which were so similar to mine, I think they must have read my blog.   They predicted Washington, DC (not going to happen),  but also Montgomery County, MD which makes a lot of sense as a Miami to Boston compromise and close enough to Washington.

— Update #2,  the paddypower website for gamblers  has Boston, Austin and Atlanta as front runners.  Washington, DC is #4.  My other hunches,  Toronto, North Virginia, Raleigh and Newark are all at the back of the bus.  For Amazon employees, scared to death they could be transferred to Newark, you can rest easy for now.  Pittsburgh and Montgomery County are also in paddypower top 6 bets.

Stay tuned,


Top cities:  Atlanta,  Austin, Boston, Chicago, Columbus, OH, Dallas, Denver, Indianapolis, Los Angeles, Miami, Montgomery County, MD, Nashville, Newark (oh no), New York, Northern Virginia (not a city), Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Raleigh, NC, Toronto (yes, we know it’s in Canada, Amazon can change this!), and Washington.

Trump’s Fake News Awards

Stephen Colbert refers to them as the Fakies.  He was hoping his comedy show would win one of these awards.

Fact checkers have been working overtime, as the White House produces one false statement after another.   It is wonderful to have, and other fact checking websites, drill down on the many statements made by politicians.  Trump now has a historical low rating of 4% true and 12% mostly true statements, so 84% of his statements are Mostly False, False, or Pants on Fire according to Politifact.

The media is not 100% accurate.  Mistakes are made.  What really differentiates a mistake from a lie, is whether the news organization corrects itself, in a timely and public manner.    The awards were given out for 9 mistakes which were quickly corrected.  Even Paul Kruger’s  opinion on the future of the economy was rescinded a couple of days later when he changed his mind.  No facts were in dispute, so it is hardly reason for a fake news award.

The White House does push back, as it should, when incorrect information is released.  For example, the tweet from Times reporter Zeke Miller stated  that a bust of Martin Luther King was no longer in the Oval Office, was corrected within an hour.  A picture of the statue was tweeted the same day by the White House.  Another pretty silly mistake was made by Dave Weigel who posted a picture of a Pensacola rally, showing the room to be only partially filled, however the picture was taken before the rally began.  Weigel works for the Washington Post, but this tweet came from his personal account, and was never published in the Washington Post.  But, it qualified for a fakie award – go figure!

Then there is the silly  fish food dumping incident.  CNN broadcast a clip showing Trump shamelessly dumping an entire box of food for the ritual feeding of Koi fish during his visit in Japan.  It was Politifact, which caught the error, after examining the entire video, which shows Trump was only following the lead of the Japanese Prime Minister.   The video clip went viral, but so did a host of retractions very soon afterwards with a clip of the Prime Minister also doing the same thing –  dumping the entire small box.   This clearly demonstrated that Politifact will back the president when the reporting is unfair as occurred in this case.  Koigate and the subsequent retraction all occurred on Nov 6, 2017 with the initial mistake occurring two minutes after midnight from a tweet by a CNN reporter, Veronica Rocha.  Glad to see she survived Koigate and is still tweeting (up to 9600 tweets!) for CNN.

I particularly enjoy Gizmodo’s comment, “In the wide world of media mistakes, Koigate is probably somewhere between a spelling error and posting the wrong hyperlink. But you can be sure that we’ll be talking about Koigate for some time as an example of what’s wrong with the media.” It does qualify as a mistake because they quickly admitted the error.     If Koigate can qualify as one of the top ten mistakes made by CNN in 2017, then you really have to give CNN credit for some pretty accurate reporting.

What the awards actually show, is the mainstream media is very concern about accuracy, and has no problem admitting their occasional mistakes.  In fact, when CNN really screwed up by incorrectly stating Antony  Scaramucci,  had  links to a Russian investment fund supposedly being investigated by the United States Senate.  CNN quickly issued a retraction and forced the resignation of three reporters. CNN  suspended Brian Ross for four weeks, without pay, after the Scaramucci mistake.

CNN also reported that according to their sources,  Comey’s testimony would contradict Trump’s on the critical issue of whether he was under investigation.   He did not contradict Trump’s statements on this issue, and CNN reported their original expectation was wrong.   Their sources were wrong on what Comey was going to say.  So what? Stock analysts make hundreds of wrong predictions every day.

The last Fake Award (#11) is really just a Trump’s attack on the Russian investigation in general.  It reads as follows:

And last, but not least: “RUSSIA COLLUSION!” Russian collusion is perhaps the greatest hoax perpetrated on the American people. THERE IS NO COLLUSION!

The website, adds this tweet by Donald Trump:

Well, now that collusion with Russia is proving to be a total hoax and the only collusion is with Hillary Clinton and the FBI/Russia, the Fake News Media (Mainstream) and this phony new book are hitting out at every new front imaginable. They should try winning an election. Sad!

Special counsel Robert S. Mueller III, appointed by the Trump administration, continues his investigation, as do congressional committees led by Republicans.

The fakies awards missed  their target 11 to 0.   In fact,  if that is the best the White House has,  CNN and the others should feel pretty good.  (“hit me with your best shot, fire away”, Pat Benetar, still a classic).  On petty, silly and absolutely non consequential mistakes, I still find Koigate as # 1,  followed quickly by the Martin Luther King bust as # 2, and the Polish first lady non-handshake mistake  (see link from as # 3 and the Pensacola half empty stadium as #4.   See links.

Stay tuned,



Politifact: Fact-checking Donald Trump’s ‘results’ from his fake news awards

Washington Post Fact-checking President Trump’s ‘Fake News Awards’ The Highly-Anticipated 2017 Fake News Awards

Donald Trump and the fish food dump: How early reports got it wrong

Steve Colbert: Fake News Awards (Youtube)

Friends of America

US Ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, held a reception for the “Friends of America” to thank the countries who voted against the UN resolution, condemning President Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem.    It was a bit bizarre, as of the 193 members representing almost all of the 7.6 billion inhabitants of our planet, only 9 countries voted against the resolution.   Of these 9 countries,  only 5 have populations over 1 million residents: US,  Israel, Guatemala, Honduras, and Togo (See list  at end of this blog).  Some reception!

If Donald Trump is dividing the world into proper civilized countries, and shithole ones, Guatemala probably would fall in the latter.  The State Department’s Travel Advisory states:

Reconsider travel to Guatemala due to crime. Violent crime, such as sexual assault, carjacking, armed robbery, and murder, is common. Gang activity, such as extortion, violent street crime, and narcotics trafficking, is widespread, particularly in the border regions. Local police may lack the resources to respond effectively to serious criminal incidents.

This is Level 3 advisory.   The top warning  is Level  4 which advises travelers not to visit the countries and if  intrepid travelers ignore this advice,  the State Department suggests having a will prepared prior to travel.  The only other South American countries with a Level 3 advisory (Reconsider Travel) are Honduras and El Salvador.

Personally,  I have nothing against Honduras and Guatemala. I have been several times to Guatemala, and each visit was fantastic.  The other country, Togo, is in Africa, and has been struggling for years due to low prices for its agricultural exports.  It has an astounding dense population of approximately 8 million residents. I was actually surprised at Togo’s vote, with a 20% Muslim population.

So, Nikki’s party invitees of “No Voters” had one wealthy country (Israel), three countries in economic dire straits (Guatemala, Honduras, and Togo) and 4 tiny island states in the Pacific.  Nauru is one of them, which has a population of 13,000 residents,  whose best asset is it’s seat in the UN and a vote that comes cheap.  See link below on Nauru’s recognition of Russia’s breakaway republics in exchange for aid.

It is our President which is dividing up the world, through his travel bans, cuts in aid and policy decisions, to make the US disliked around the world as never before.  He’s been able to sour relations with our close neighbors, Mexico and Canada.

The invitees to the Haley’s reception included all those who  didn’t vote at all or abstained so the total number of invitees was 64.   I can see why – as the resolution was going to pass anyway, and it really had no effect except to embarrass the US.  So, to be a friend of the US doesn’t take much, just sit at home on the day of the vote.   Still, it was a landslide vote against the US.

Usually, when you tell nation leaders that they must support US policies or else, “We’re taking names” comment by Nikki Haley, it is counter productive.  The recent violence in Pakistan, is directed at Trump’s cut off of military aid.  It’s regrettable as we need them as an ally against terrorism.

We seem to be antagonizing both friends and enemies.  We lost the chance to broker some peace settlement between Palestine and Israel,  with our decision to recognize Jerusalem.  South Korea seems to be making inroads to reducing hostilities with North Korea, after we  exchanged increasingly higher threats with North Korea.  The humanitarian crisis in Yemen seems of little importance to Trump.  It is a Iran-Saudi proxy war, and we’ve sided with the Saudi’s.

The Middle East countries are now more divided into the Sunni and Shi’a factions, and doing less to curb real terrorism.  We may eventually undermine the moderates control in Iran,  by President Rouhani, by imposing new sanctions, and threatening to abandon the nuclear agreement.  In doing so, we discourage any deal with North Korea over their nuclear program.  Meanwhile, the State Department continues to shrink under Secretary  Rex Tillerson, with many of the diplomatic posts unfilled.  Yet I consider him one of the best of the cabinet leaders.  I would include Gen.  Mattis at Defense as well.

I would like to have seen a “Friends of the US” reception with leaders from all the continents of the world.   This would require a major re-think of the America First agenda.  We are “Stronger Together”  the slogan of Hillary Clinton’s campaign.

Stay tuned,



CNN:  How each country voted at the UN

Yes votes: 128 No votes: 9 Abstaining: 38 votes Not voting: 21

Tiny Nauru struts world stage by recognising breakaway republics

I’ve often thought about a service on the internet, similar to “” where countries could bid on the UN representatives’ vote. Maybe “” would work.  Of course, the country would first have to let the world know it’s vote is up for sale.

Nikki Haley’s New Best Friends at the UN

Hundreds of Pakistani protesters burn US flags after Trump says he is cutting aid to the country because it ‘does not take terrorism seriously enough’


Lawsuits against Buzzfeed and Fusion GPS

There is going to be a lot of media coverage on Trump dossier / Buzzfeed / Fusion GPS / Congressional Investigation.  It is way more than this subject deserves.  So why would I want to add to it?  I’ve already posted one blog, with the conclusion that the media in general, has shown incredible restraint in not making the dossier public because the sources of the information were not revealed in the dossier and salacious information on Donald Trump could not be confirmed.

Trump Dossier – Nov 2017

The Trump Dossier could not have affected the elections because the details had not been made public until January 11, 2017 when  Buzzfeed decided to post it on the internet as they have the legal right to under the First Amendment of free speech.   As I reported earlier, they were sued one month later, as follows:

Aleksej Gubarev, chief of technology company XBT and a figure mentioned in the dossier, sued BuzzFeed for defamation on February 3, 2017.

Today,  Michael Cohen,  who is one of Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, filed  lawsuits against Buzzfeed and Fusion GPS for defaming him.   Why now and not a year ago when the Trump dossier was first posted on the internet.  The lawsuits are frivolous and will go nowhere.  There is just a one year limit on filing lawsuits after material has been published.    Michael Cohen has strongly denied a visit to Prague in the summer of 2016 and offered a copy of his passport as proof.  However if is possible his passport would not be stamped if he entered by way of other EU countries.   However,  for those who like to  believe the whole Russian scandal is one big witch hunt, and the Democrats did stuff far worse, these lawsuits give Michael Cohen free air time, particularly on Fox News, which is something his boss (Donald Trump) will appreciate.

Stay tuned,


— There are way too many links on this topic to list here.    One is a bit misleading, from the New York Times, entitled “I’m Proud We Published the Russian-Trump Dossier”  however if you click on the link,  the “We” refers to Buzzfeed, and not the New York Times. It is written by Ben Smith, CEO of Buzzfeed, and is offered an independent opinion piece.   All the mainstream media (CNN, Washington Post, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and many others) and conservative focused media outlets, including Fox News refused to publish the dossier in either print or electronic form.    I believe it is to their credit, that they refuse publication because several of the allegations have no corroboration.

US Jobs and Economic Growth – Cutting through the Trump BS

The US economy was strong in 2017.  Trump’s claim that two million new jobs were added, is right.   Of course,  job growth was good leading up to his inauguration, so he shouldn’t be taking credit for the entire year.

What’s not right, is that the economy was terrible under Obama, and he somehow turned things around.  It was a terrible economy in the last year of Bush’s administration, and aggressive action by both Bush and Obama helped the recovery.  I just go by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, to make my point.

Trump’s monthly average gain of 171,250 new jobs doesn’t look too good, nor does the 2 million new jobs stand out against Obama’s administration’s numbers.   The housing bubble (2004 – 2006) produced some high gains, but it all came crashing down in 2008 to 2009.  The stock market made an all time low in March 2009.

It took time for our economy to recover, as there was only a 1 million job gain in 2010.   But,  our economy has proven to be much more resilient than economists were predicting in 2007 to 2009.   The December 2017 labor statistics just came out with 148,000 new jobs, well below the 190,000 estimate.  The stock market continued its rally, based on the concept of a slowing economy  discourages the Fed’s program of gradual rate hikes.  Or another words, some bad news is actually good news to the stock market, just so long as it isn’t terrible news.

I’ve included one link as posted in Yahoo – Finance, entitled “Challenge for Trump: Job Growth is Slowing”  which adds a bit of reality to the whole story.  We likely attributed too much to actions of an administration, as the factors influencing growth (good or bad) may take years to develop.  The housing bubble was at least seven years in the making (includes both the Clinton and Bush administrations).  Also, an unemployment of 4.1% is considered a good number, and attempts to stimulate the economy further puts pressure on wage growth.

So, the chief concern is that inflation will increase more rapidly than wages, so many workers will feel  their spending power reduced.  Not good for retail, and ultimately this could lead to a recession.   In this case, the reduced corporate tax rate will help in reducing debt, not expanding businesses.   So, Wall Street may prosper at least in the short term, as Main Street suffers.

See link:

Challenge for Trump: Job growth is slowing

Stay tuned,



Defaming the President of the United States

You have certain rights that President Trump does not, because he is a public figure.   You have the right to sue for character defamation in civil court.   Someone suing must prove the information published  was false and as a result, there was monetary loss.   Further,   the information can’t be in the form of a joke or cartoon, as this is not considered factual information.  This issue arose yesterday, when a new book was published about President Trump, entitled:  “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House.”   President Trump has threatened the publisher with a lawsuit based on libelous statements.

I ordered by copy today from Amazon:

Michael Wolff:  Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House  from Amazon 

Wikipedia:  Fire and Fury book on Trump

New York Times vs Sullivan (1964)

***  Update:

Did Michael Wolff have access to the White House?

Donald Trump has responded in a tweet saying he had no access to the WH.  Politifact concludes that Trump’s denial is False.

See link below:

Politifact – Access to WH by Wolff

They can’t verify that Wolff had as much contact as he claims,  but he was often inside  the White House.

Stay tuned,