Reading the news lately is an excursion into frustration, anger, disbelief, shock, revulsion, and a major heaping of What the F**k???
The Trump administration elitist one-percenters want to really screw the poor. If the new budget were to pass as is, the cost in human services and even human life would be large. Trump and his gaggle of draconian gatekeepers and misfits want to gut the federal programs that provide help and subsistence to the elderly, the poor, the mentally ill, the unemployable and the homeless.
It very much seems like this new “administration” and the current Republican majorities in the House and Senate aren’t really all that concerned about “shrinking government” and increasing our nation’s defense capabilities so much as they are codifying their bigoted hatred of the poor while further lining the pockets of the already rich.
This is, in my opinion, the most disgusting, draconian, and morally and ethically bankrupt gaggle of excuses for “lawmakers” I’ve ever witnessed in my life.
Aside from my initial comments in the early days of the 2016 Presidential Election and Donald Trump’s victory, I’ve been silent here. I was quite angry that we (Democrats) lost. It was a hard pill to swallow, but I’ve swallowed it and it’s time to move on.
Then November 2016 came and went, January 2017 came and went, and we are into February. I am even angrier now than I was upon learning that Trump won the election and became the President of the United States. But my anger now is no longer about Trump winning.
My anger now is about how the Republicans in Congress lost their backbones and jumped on the Trump bandwagon, and are now trying to fast-track confirmation of the most objectionable unqualified and unsavory cabinet appointees I’ve seen in my lifetime. This bodes ill for the nation, since these people are going to cause possibly irreparable harm to millions and millions of people.
As if that by itself wasn’t already bad enough, the continued petulant, pugnacious, truculent animosity of Trump supporters against anyone who hasn’t also jumped on their misguided bandwagon has appalling. This election cycle has incited alarming hostile divisiveness even between family members and friends. It is shocking – and all indications are that it is only going to get worse.
I’ve always been proud to be an American … but the hate and malice unleashed by Trump and the Republicans in the United States has caused serious damage to the fundamental ideal of what it is to be an American both at home and abroad.
The unending parade of headlines tells the story in a snapshot (parenthetical notes added by me) Go ahead, at least check them out. These are primarily from CNN over a couple days:
Alex Jones of the InfoWars web site has posted a video claiming that the “government has announced they want to shut this site (InfoWars.com) down.” Other fake news sites are running similar articles, including one called “TheBostonTribune” claiming that President Obama signed an Executive Order to “shut down the alt right” and other “alternative media” sites. The article even posted an Executive Order 13749 (and even gave the link to a government page listing Executive Orders (https://www.archives.gov/federal-register/executive-orders) where there was no Executive Order 13749 (as of this writing). So this “story” seems to be just more fake news.
The reason these sites exist at all in the U.S. is because of the First Amendment protections for freedom of speech and expression. Unfortunately, people who run these sites abuse their First Amendment rights by posting irresponsibly and dishonestly by spreading misinformation and personal and political bias and bigotry (and racism, sexism, xenophobia). Alex Jones is one of the more prominent purveyors of fake news and gross bias.
Perhaps, since these sites do not post truthful or reliable news, they should – instead of being shut down – be required by law to make a clearly and prominently visible statement to the effect of: “Articles published on this site are not vetted or sanctioned by any official U.S. news organization and are predominantly the authors’ subjective opinion, are spoofed or fake, and/or are satirical in nature and therefore can not considered as being 100% truthful or accurate.” This would be the responsible action.
How fake news sites work: They take truths and weave false stories around them to make it appear as if it was a legitimate piece of news. But it is dishonest and pernicious. As several mainstream news articles have been reporting, “fake news has real world effects” – and those effects are potentially dangerous (like the person who took a firearm into a pizza restaurant in Washington D.C.).
Many of the political fake news sites serve to promote often exaggerated right wing (Republican) ideals and even far right wing fanaticism, and to bash the left wing and “Liberals” – both of whom they often call inflammatory names like “libtards” and other derogatory pejoratives – and tell usually false and inaccurate pseudo-news that mischaracterizes and condemns the left (Democrats). And people keep falling for this crap! Even after all the media attention regarding fake news sites, people still fall for this stuff, and even defend it. The sites that post fake news call their sites “alternative media” – which is misleading. This “alternative media” is usually posted by people with an agenda – to promote their bias and bigotry and to make money off of advertisers who advertise through these outlets and off of begging for donations.
A tech author and writer, Bob Rankin, (often featured on the PC Pitstop web site), wrote an article to help identify fake news sites:
“Fake news is spread mainly ON Facebook and Twitter. Both social media platforms have pledged to do more to identify fake news and stop its spread. But fake news is not spread BY Facebook or Twitter. It’s spread by the human users of these services. Check out these tips to help you discern spot the bogus stories.
Avoid sites whose names end with “lo” such as “Politicalo” or “Newslo.” They all belong to a network of sites that inject false “facts” and misleading interpretations into true stories, then distribute the poisoned fruits.
Domain names that end in “.com.co” are usually masquerading as legitimate sources. The same goes for “.com.cc” or any other “.com” name that has additional letters at its end.
If mainstream media is not reporting a story, it’s more likely that there is no story, than that the MSM does not want to report it. Be suspicious of any story that complains, “MAINSTREAM MEDIA IS IGNORING THIS!”
Beware of headlines and body text that use lots of capitalized words. All-caps text stirs up angry, anxious emotions in readers, making them more inclined to share without thinking.
If a story is written in a tone of outrage, it is likely to make you very angry too. Take a deep breath and check the story’s claims via Google before sharing it.
The lack of a date, location, or author’s name in an article should move your BS-detector’s needle. If your BS-detector is missing or faulty, try the B.S. Detector browser plugin. It checks every page you visit, comparing the domain names to a database of domains belonging to unreliable or questionable news sources, and will alert you with a banner across the top of the page if what you’re reading is potentially bogus. Links are categorized as Fake News, Satire, Extreme Bias, Conspiracy Theory, Rumor Mill, Junk Science, Hate Group, Clickbait, and Proceed With Caution (sources that may be reliable but require further verification).
Check the comments left on a story, if any are available. You may find someone has already debunked or verified the story.
A picture has more emotional impact than 1,000 words, and pictures can be faked too. I detailed several ways to evaluate the authenticity of images in my article, Is That Picture Real? Google Image Search is your best tool for learning where else a given picture appears.”
Fake news (“Alternative Media” or “Alternative News”) has grown into a major problem, and many believe it has unfairly influenced the outcome of the 2016 presidential election. It is believed that Russian President Vladimir Putin’s government has been a promoter of fake news with the intent to interfere in the 2016 American electoral process and, has possibly done so since as far back as 2008.
Fake news is bad news. Please check your sources before you re-post any “news” stories – on Facebook or Twitter or other social media site – or in your blog – especially if they seem a bit hard to believe, or if they anger you or raise your blood pressure … don’t fall for the lies and misinformation.
The members of the Electoral College need to be made aware (if they’re not already) that Donald Trump is a genuine menace and a potentially great danger to our great nation. In his own environment (business) he may be very successful and with his family, he may be a great father. I suspect he may be a good friend to many, as well. But as a President of the United States … he is terrifying.
He may be the President-elect, but already he is saying and doing things that are causing serious divisiveness and disruption – not only within the United States but in the global community as well. As just one example, recently, his phone call with the Taiwanese leader represents a major diplomatic faux pas, and has angered China and may have damaged our relations with China. As you know, China is considered the second largest economy and the second largest military in the world. China combined with Russia could form a collaboration of countries that would represent an extremely formidable super power. Add North Korea, and the volatility of its brash, leader Kim Jong Un, and you have three nuclear powers that, between themselves, have considerably more nuclear weapons than the United States.
As you also know, US relations with China are strained, US relations with Russia are often being referred to as another “Cold War” and relations with North Korea are almost as bad as they’ve ever been. With a Donald Trump as president, with consideration of his “shoot from the hip” style, his lack of finesse, his naïveté with regard to the workings of politics from the perspective of a world leader, and his penchant for taking things personally (as indicated in his 3 AM tweets) and you have an extremely volatile mix.
Then, let’s consider another alarming factor: Donald Trump has a penchant for believing and perpetuating, and even originating, conspiracy theories. It is believed that Trump listens to, and takes seriously, websites like Breitbart news, Info Wars, (etc) – and many other fake news that have been proliferating throughout the Internet and social media as of late. Donald Trump was a major figure in the “Birther Movement” against Pres. Obama, and has repeated information suggesting that he has bought into a number of conspiracy theories regarding Hillary Clinton and even Bill Clinton.
Trump claimed he was going to “drain the swamp” – but is now surrounding himself with people who actually representthe swamp. His selection of Steve Bannon, formerly of Breitbart news, as an advisor alone should give people pause. Bannon is a former Goldman Sachs banker who has been known to either create our perpetuate fake news stories, is a divisive far right-wing pundit, has been linked to white supremacy groups, and, under his leadership, Breitbart news has promoted racism, anti-Semitism, bigotry, xenophobia, and other inflammatory, derisive views of people and groups he, and Breitbart news, has taken aim at. Trump chose, to head the EPA, Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt – a move that signals Trump’s intent to undo President Obama’s work to curb climate change. Then there is the CEO of Hardee’s/Wendy’s restaurants, who opposes the $15.00 per hour minimum wage, and opposes paying overtime to salaried people who make less than 47,500 a year.
Then, as his Treasury Secretary, Trump has selected a former Goldman Sachs banker Steven Mnuchin, who profited from the housing meltdown.
He has named Rep. Tom Price to head the Department of Health and Human Services. Price is an outspoken critic of Obama care, and wants to privatize Medicare, is a member of the Tea Party, and is a very scary choice for all those millions of people who depend on the federal Medicare health program. These people now stand in fear of their health benefits being reduced, made more costly, or lost altogether.
He has selected Sen. Jeff sessions from Alabama as his new attorney general. Sessions has been reported as making racially insensitive comments to a former colleague, Thomas Figures, ad African-American. Sessions told him to be careful what he said about “white folks” and “made a comment sympathetic to the KKK.”
As of this writing, the remaining cabinet positions have not been decided yet, but the kind of people Trump is surrounding himself with sends a very scary message about Trump, and about the pain and hardship he intends to inflict upon the American people. Trump and his cabinet are all members of the “one percent” and they represent what I think of as perpetrators of “the war against the poor.”
No Electoral College members have ever voted significantly against the candidate with the most pledged votes. Despite the fact that Hillary Clinton won nearly two and a half million more popular votes than Trump, the Electoral College system will vote the candidate with significantly fewer actual votes. To me, that represents a slap in the face to the voters, and an abandonment of what “majority vote” stands for. It is un-democratic.
It has been proven again and again throughout recent history that if enough people stand up against unfairness from the government, it can cause changes to happen. The most recent example it the Dakota Pipeline protest: at least for now, the pipeline construction has been delayed – and may be reevaluated and another path taken for the land the pipeline is built across, saving the potential for poisoning of groundwater and impingement of sacred Indian land.
I wonder … if enough people stood against the Electoral College, if the right thing might be accomplished – and elect the person who actually won the popular vote.
I think Americans are soon going to experience a gigantic case of “voter’s remorse” with Donald Trump. Since winning the Electoral College pledges, in the weeks since November 8, 2016, Donald trump has back-pedaled, altered, flip-flopped, and even changed his stances on core issues that he asserted on the campaign trail. It is (or should be) obvious that he is a “say-one-thing, do-another” kind of person. He said the things he knew would appeal to voters to get him elected – not because he meant them, but because it’s what the American public wanted to hear. He literally took advantage of peoples’ disillusionment with politicians and “politics-as-usual” and played on those sentiments just to get elected.
And he has amassed a team of spin-doctors like Kellyanne Conway, Reinse Prebus and others from his own team (including many in government who have now jumped ship and landed on the Trump bandwagon) to rationalize his contradictions and about-faces. Additionally, he has amassed an army of apologists from all over America who (instead of recognizing and admitting they’ve been bait-and-switched) will downplay and whitewash his behaviors, rather than recognize (and sound the alarm about) the huge red flags raised by the “3 a.m. Tweeter-In-Chief” President-Elect.
Working-class Americans thought Trump would enact legislation and make policy changes that would improve and enhance their lives and strengthen their incomes. Instead, it appears they will see increases in taxes for the lower and middle-class and tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans; reductions in government services; reductions of quality in (or loss of) health insurance; potential curtailment of the First Amendment protections; greatly increased intrusions into peoples’ privacy through removing protections against arbitrary and unreasonable surveillance from the NSA, DHS, FBI, and other government and law enforcement agencies; loss of support for Medicare and Social Security for the elderly and disabled, and many more government services that have eased the burden on – especially – lower income Americans.
Apparently, the Republicans and right-wing extremists in government are going to use Donald Trump as their “tool” to implement their their own policies and intensify their war against the poor and their enhancement of the wealthy. And Trump, being unfamiliar with and inexperienced in political dealings and behind-the-scenes jockeying will be played like a fiddle by those who will do us ALL (who are not wealthy) grievous harm.
Trump’s proposed tax plan will make the rich richer, the poor poorer, and the middle class continue to stagnate while plunging the country into yet another recession. And, of course – and as always – the rich (including Donald Trump) will simply continue to get richer and more powerful.
The only hope – however dim – is to convince enough Electoral College members to do the RESPONSIBLE thing and become “Faithless Electors” to prevent Trump from running this great nation into the ground. People may hate Hillary Clinton, but her platform really does work to improve things for the “average American” and reduce the power and control (and abuse) exerted by the 1%.
I make no secret of the fact that I strongly distrust Donald Trump. Nor do I make a secret that I believe a huge number of people who voted for Trump were lied to and manipulated into voting as they did. I believe there was a lot of influence from fake news the has proliferated over the Internet and on social media, and I’m frankly surprised that so many people actually fell for it.
I also believe that – if not Trump himself – many who supported Trump on the inside (Trump’s PR people, campaign workers, etc.) either fed into the fake news, or turned a blind eye to it since so much of it favored their candidate. Do I have proof of this? No, I don’t. It is just my opinion. But for those who are aware of the fake news sites and the influence they can (and did) have, think about it. I will talk about fake news more in-depth in another post.
Now that the election is concluded, and Trump has won the Electoral College majority, it’s time to brace for (and prepare for) potentially the worst four years in the history of post WWII America. We have to be very aware of the following, and very determined to stand against Trump and the Republican-led Senate and House of Representatives. We have to call up our internal “”Elizabeth Warrens’ and Bernie Sanders’ and stand strong against Trump and the GOP every time they try to institute legislation or policy or engage in practices that are antithetical to the progress that has been made thus far.
Democrats remember all of the obstructionist tactics that Republicans used to block their agenda during the Obama years and come January 2017; it’s payback time. Republicans won the election, and they may control both the House and the Senate, but they do not have the 60 votes needed to pass legislation in the Senate.
Donald Trump is all about Donald Trump. But besides himself, Donald Trump is all about money and wealth and being rich and being a “one-per center” and helping other one-per centers. As has been discussed in the news from CNN to FOX to local T.V. news and radio stations and on (legitimate) news outlets on the Internet … look for the rich to get even richer, the middle class to continue to stagnate, and the poor to slide even further into poverty. Look for medical care to become harder to get, more expensive, and those with pre-existing conditions find it very hard (and excessively expensive) to get or maintain health insurance.
If you are average middle class, don’t expect any really noticeable changes. You might see a slight reduction in your payroll tax, but it won’t amount to anything significant. You will probably pay higher premiums and deductibles for your health insurance. Your pay will not increase because Trump is now in the White House. That will be solely up to your boss/management.
Remember Reagan’s “Trickle-Down Economics?” Do you remember how well that worked? (It didn’t). Reagan felt that reducing tax burdens on big companies and corporations would result in more money so they would hire more people and be able to increase wages for employees. But what happened when taxes were reduced for the wealthy, by and large, they just kept the money and got even more filthy rich.
Trump’s tax reduction plan and proposed new tax code will, of course, favor the rich, again. It will cut taxes for the middle class, which will tremendously reduce federal government revenue and weaken government programs. Local governments will need to pick up the slack, so local taxes are likely to increase: sales tax, state and county income taxes, anywhere they can figure out legal ways to take more of your money.
For those at the lower end of the working income scale … times are going to get tough(er). Your income will slightly decrease because Trump’s tax plan will increase your taxes a little.
If you are disabled, elderly, unemployed or below the poverty level … things are going to get even harder than they already are. People who are employed, and the rich folks look down on you like you are a blight on society. While they pay lip service to “Oh, I’ve had financial hard times, and I just picked myself up by the bootstraps and got going again” – they have never had genuinely hard times. The greatest majority had some kind of edge or advantage: a well-to-do family member to hire them; they lived in an area where their skills were in enough demand that getting a job wasn’t all that hard; they had been able to earn a Bachelor (or higher) degree and thus are more employable; they had friends or family to put in a good word for them to help get them hired – or they had been raised in an environment where they were effectively “groomed” to be able to find and maintain employment. Some has some kind of advantage that allowed them to start their own businesses and while I’m sure these people all worked quite hard and put in the time and effort … they still had some kind of advantage, or leg up. They are able-bodied and able-minded.
Not so for folks who are disabled. Just having a disability automatically closes many doors for employment or starting/running a business. No one will admit it (because it’s illegal) but there is serious and pervasive discrimination against the disabled when it comes to hiring them. “Well, I’m not sure my insurance would cover you” or, “I’m just not convinced you could actually handle the job” or, “I just can’t afford to go making all kinds of reasonable accommodations for all you disabled folks” or the felt, but unstated, “I don’t want people working for me who are physically or mentally messed up because I’m afraid they’ll just get in the way or need too much extra attention – or I just don’t like them.” They might be afraid someone with a mental disability will one day “go postal” and start shooting people! I could write many posts just on this topic alone.
You can’t make employers hire you. If you are low-income, chances are you’ll never qualify for large enough loans to get any viable business off the ground. And believe it or not, it’s even harder for disabled folks whose disability is not visible. Surprisingly, many people actually think people with invisible disabilities “are faking it.” For the sake of brevity, I won’t list invisible disabilities here, but here is a link to a site that discusses and details invisible disabilities: https://www.disabled-world.com/disability/types/invisible/
The elderly have most of the problems that disabled folks have, and they are discriminated against because “you’re just too old. We want young, vibrant, attractive people working here.”
But I digress.
Trump, buttressed by a Republican Congress and Senate – and the appointment of a U.S. Supreme Courts Justice who will rule in support of the right-wing agenda, will have the power to really screw this country up badly. The GOP has been chomping at the bit to cut taxes, cut government spending, undo everything they can that was put in place by democrats (ObamaCare, Clean Energy, Environmental protections, subsidies for the most vulnerable and needy in America, etc.).
Donald Trump is not a good person. He is definitely not a good choice for the office of President of the United States of America. Why? Among other things, he demonstrates many negative, unfavorable character and personality weaknesses such as racism, sexism, narcissism, elitism, discrimination against low income working people, against the poor and disabled, and intolerance for people who are different. This man actually engages in petty attacks against various people and organizations based on thin-skinned, intemperate bias. He is unqualified in many other ways I suspect will surface as he starts trying to be a president.
He is a fascist, nationalist demagogue who blatantly appeals to the most intolerant, racist, sexist, classist, discriminatory and bigoted sickness among disenfranchised, gullible Americans.
Donald Trump is notmypresident. And while it may be easy to automatically jump to the conclusion that I am some kind of biased liberal crackpot, that’s just not true. I am conservative on many issues, populist on others, and liberal on only a few social issues (such as supporting the nation’s most vulnerable – the elderly, the disabled, and low income workers who work hard but are grossly underpaid – rather than bashing them and robbing them of their livelihoods by cutting support programs that help them to keep their head above water). I am a pretty pragmatic, realistic thinking person who has consistently voted on the issues, not the person – until now. This time I voted on the issues, and on the person, because this time, the person (Donald Trump) is a “special case” and, I believe, a clear and present danger – a genuine threat to America both domestically and internationally.
I really believe in my heart and soul that Trump very bad for most people in this country (except other one percenters and other wealthy individuals, corporations and CEOs who will benefit tremendously by his tax cuts and “reform”).
In terms of how I will be affected, personally, I have several very real and legitimate concerns and reasons for not wanting Trump to be president. I fear how my health, welfare and livelihood (and that of millions of others in comparable positions) will be negatively impacted.
I am a disabled person, surviving on a low income from Social Security Disability Insurance benefits. (Note: these benefits are NOT “welfare” – they are insurance benefits promised to me and millions and millions of other hard working Americans should they become disabled, as I did). I am also a Veteran, as well. Trump has mocked disabled people and Veterans, and he – along with a Republican controlled Senate and House – poses a tremendous threat to me and the millions of people who are poor and disabled.
Trump is a Liar
Donald Trump is one of the biggest and most obvious fakes I’ve ever seen slither his way into being a presidential candidate. He is a fake; in that he literally says what he believes will influence people to want to vote for him, then changes his position once he has achieved what he wanted for himself. He’s a salesman and a demagogue. What salespeople do is try to create a need where none existed before, to make people want to buy products or services that will make the salesman a little richer. What demagogues do is manipulate people based on their fears, prejudices and hopes, and on their hatred and sense of disenfranchisement.
Trump is an Egotistical Narcissist
Donald Trump is all about Donald Trump. The “giveaway” signs are in how he calls himself “the Donald” and in how he has so many of his personal living spaces, upscale apartments, and his home filled with lavish settings and furnishings, and objects that are gold or gold-plated. Trump was born with a silver spoon in his mouth, and he had easy access to far more opportunity than the great majority of Americans. In his own words, “My father gave me a small loan and I started a business and now I’m a billionaire.” I ask you, how many people have fathers who can give them a “small loan” of fourteen million dollars? Did your father give you a multimillion dollar loan? To me, a “small loan” would be a few thousand dollars. A million and above would be a huge loan. Hell, with fourteen million dollars, I could have started several businesses and still have the financial power to ensure they didn’t fail. Only stupidity and crappy management would cause failure with fourteen million dollars to support a startup until it stood on its own legs.
Trump is a Sexist
At least twelve women (at this writing) have come forward to accuse Donald Trump of sexual misconduct. His own words, televised around the world, prove he said such things as “just grab ‘em by the pussy” and because he’s a star, women will let him do anything he wants. He said “And I just have to kiss ‘em. It’s like a magnet, I just walk up and kiss ‘em.” If you haven’t seen the footage, you haven’t been awake. So far, twelve women have come forward to claim Donald Trump engaged in sexual misconduct with them.
Now, as he assembles people for his cabinet, Trump has included Steve Bannon of Breitbart news for his Chief of Staff – a truly vile person who is a white supremacist with ties to White Nationalists.
For example, regarding his intent to appoint a special prosecutor to investigate Hillary Clinton, after claiming to want to put her in jail, incarcerating his political rivals is what you would expect from a Kim Jong Un of North Korea, a Vladimir Putin of Soviet era Russia, a Augusto Pinochet of Chile, or other fascist or dictator, not from an American president.
Then there is this:
Look at the news detailing much of the serious damage Trump and the now Republican-led government will deal to the United States:
He wants to expand the use of torture techniques in the war on terror, advocating methods “a hell of a lot worse than waterboarding,” and he wants to send even more detainees to the prison at Guantanamo Bay.
He wants to “open up our libel laws” and reverse The New York Times v. Sullivan decision, the unanimous 1964 ruling that provides journalists and private citizens with First Amendment protections against defamation lawsuits brought by government officials and public figures.
Trumps plans to cut taxes for the rich and somewhat for the middle class, “renegotiate NAFTA” bring manufacturing jobs back home, reduce gov’t regulation on businesses, and other plans he has pledged to engage, the US deficit will skyrocket. When the debt grows so large so fast, it becomes a focal point of spending cuts. Spending cuts typically target the most vulnerable in society: government and wealthy people don’t want to take ANY kind of reduction on revenues so, instead, they will cut services to the low income workers, Medicare and Medicaid, reduce Social Security, reduce government pensions, etc.
Donald Trump bought a rent- controlled building in New York and engaged in underhanded slumlord-like activities to drive out renters so he could tear the building down and build luxury apartments to rent to a more affluent class of renters.
“Trump has been typically braggadocious about his adultery and philandering. For instance, these come from his various literary works:
“If I told the real stories of my experiences with women, often seemingly very happily married and important women, this book would be a guaranteed best-seller (which it will be anyway!). I’d love to tell all, using names and places, but I just don’t think it’s right.” (“Trump: The Art of the Comeback”)
“I have too much respect for women in general, but if I did [write about my love life], the world would take serious notice. Beautiful, famous, successful, married — I’ve had them all, secretly, the world’s biggest names…”
… And the disturbing information about Donald Trump just goes on and on … it seems I could write an entire book about it.
Either the people who voted for Trump do not know very much about him, and are basing their support only on what they have seen him say in the media … or they know what a horrible person he is but don’t care (a very scary thought) – or … they have built up such a hate for Hillary Clinton (or just against Democrats in general) that they would actually support a megalomaniacal, egotistical, narcissistic, dishonest, philandering, sexist, abusive, racist, classist, elitist, politically inexperienced, thin-skinned impulsive, retaliatory horrible person for arguably the most powerful position in the world.
What a horribly scary – and very dark turn – for a country whose reputation and standing in the world has already taken a beating with the revelations from Pvt. Bradley manning and Edward Snowden and Wikileaks …
Trump supporters – “be careful what you wish for” should have been the most prominent thought in your mind (but clearly, it wasn’t).
When Donald Trump announced that he was running for the office of the President of the United States, I took it as a joke. I mean, c’mon, “The You’re fired!” one-percenter who is an obvious narcissistic, pompous, self-important, windbag who was born with a golden spoon in his mouth, living up in his ivory tower and is so out-of-touch with “normal” people that he is truly clueless? The whiny little rich boy who got started in the real estate business with “a small loan from my dad” (fourteen million dollars) and whose father took him by the hand and guided and groomed him to become a tyrannical property owner… that sexist, racist, classist nut job conspiracy theorist and crazy “eccentric” fool?
Fast forward to Nov 8, 2016. I was flabbergasted – shocked, stunned, appalled. This really threw me for a loop, and not a “good” one at all.
Donald Trump is almost like a combination of a little bit Hitler, a little bit Anthony Wiener, a little bit Rob Blagojevich, a little bit David Duke and a little bit slum lord (and a hodgepodge of other unsavory “deplorables”).
And Republicans … Trump supporters … what the f… are you thinking?? All I can say is … be careful what you wished for …
Statistics have shown that, over several decades, the rich are getting richer, the middle class is stagnating, and the poor are just getting the middle finger. With that kind of … disease … in the White House … watch the situation get even worse. No, not just “worse” but horrifically worse. Naturally, with that despicable person as POTUS, if he gets his way, things are NOT going to get better! No, they won’t.
The FLOTUS – Melenia Trump – I don’t think we’ve seen a First Lady (“Lady?”) like her ever before. I mean, seen as much of a First Lady (too much of her!). The Internet is increasingly swimming with (“very revealing” to put it politely) pictures of the new First Lady. And his offspring (shudder). Donald Jr. and Eric Trump largely reflect the worst traits of a severely emotionally and psychologically flawed father. Daughter Ivanka might be the closest thing to “sane” in that family. Or maybe not?
***Disclaimer: This blog entry (as does the rest of this blog) expresses the opinions and beliefs of the author and, as such, could be … subject to error … you be the judge …
However, according to Santa Rosa’s Press Democrat newspaper web site, it was supposed to go into effect Friday, Sept 30th. Because of pressure from a powerful SIG, the California Apartment Association – and landlords, rent control has been delayed:
“Opponents of Santa Rosa’s new rent control law appear to have submitted enough signatures to suspend the law and put the issue before voters.
A local property manager aligned with the California Apartment Association, which advocates for landlords statewide, turned in five boxes of petitions apparently bearing 12,543 signatures at City Hall Monday morning, Santa Rosa City Clerk Daisy Gomez said.”
“The CAA is a wealthy organization that takes in millions of dollars in contributions. Money that is being used to meddle in the affairs of cities across the state to corrupt the political process, and fight back against any reasonable renter protection proposals throughout California. The CAA has handed out $2,161,312 from 2004 to 2012 to politicians and their campaigns, according to Follow The Money. “
“The Press Democrat has reported that many people are complaining already that they have been tricked into signing the petition to over-turn renter protections, and how people can have their name removed from the petition in Santa Rosa.”
Obviously, the rich landlords are scared of a reduction in anticipated profits … they clearly don’t care about the hardships they are imposing on renters, many of whom pay over half their incomes for rent. It’s probably safe to assume that these landlords (the great majority of them) live in homes they own, homes that are nice, many are upscale.
They want to fight rent control because they fear rent control will force some of them to curtail their practice of gouging renters, charging far more than the properties are even worth, and from unfairly evicting renters.
The person who owns the apartments I live in makes many multimillions of dollars per year, bending renters over the barrel. He lives a pretty rich life, owns several businesses (his father already had a fortune in real estate, and his son was brought up with a silver spoon in his mouth and walked right into the family business and never had to struggle to get by. He has even made prejudiced statements maligning “poor people”). By contrast, I am disabled, struggling to get by on my limited, low-income, Social Security Disability benefits. And he’s raised my rent 66% in the last three years. People in Santa Rosa are facing comparable increases – some even greater. And while I don’t live in Santa Rosa, I live in the next city south of and connected to Santa Rosa, so what happens in Santa Rosa will likely have an impact in Rohnert Park, as well. Housing and rental prices are skyrocketing all over California – and even across the nation – and it’s damned unfair to renters. These greedy vultures are taking big advantage of the lack of housing stock to gouge and extort renters mercilessly.
Santa Rosa City Council Members Deserve Big Kudos For Doing The Right Thing!
In a previous post, I addressed an appeal that was made to Santa Rosa City Council to enact rent control and renter’s protections. According to KSRO.com, and the Press Democrat Newspaper the Santa Rosa City Council “voted 4-3 to to approve a move that will set rent control into play in Santa Rosa …with an annual cap on rent hikes for apartments built before 1995 … as well as unfair eviction protections.”
It takes courage to stand against rich investment property owners, management companies and landlords in order to enact laws that actually protect some of the most vulnerable people in our communities. The Santa Rosa City Council members who voted in favor of the measure are to be commended for being responsive to the plight of the people in their city.
In my opinion … this is a major step in the right direction in that it indicates that the (major) problem of runaway unfair rental prices, and the lack of affordable housing, is actually reaching our government leaders and they are actually starting to respond.
Rent control, however, is only a part of the solution: many more affordable units need to be built in order to better meet the housing needs of growing populations in our cities and counties (and states).
In an ideal world … there would be enough housing units available that property owners actually compete for tenants. In such a case, rental rates would become far more affordable. As it is, property owners are literally gouging renters and stoking class discrimination.
Organizations like the California Apartment Association and investment property owners (and even individual home-owner/landlords) love it when there are so many more people in need of housing than there are units available because it allows them to charge – literally – the maximum amounts that the the market (read: the wealthiest renters) can afford. Those of us who are not wealthy … are clearly not any concern of theirs.
History has shown that when the “haves” can gouge those of lesser means – they will indeed do so, usually without conscience or care for the people they hurt in the process.