The Third 100 Days (Trump Briefs:  Sept. 9-15/Day 233-239) Week 34

By Michael Hernandez

 

Saturday, Sept. 9 (Day 233):

President meets at Camp David with cabinet members

President Donald Trump met with cabinet members in Camp David to discuss the administration’s progress and challenges facing the United States including the threat posed by hurricanes.

At the top of the meeting, he urged Americans in the path of Hurricane Irma to leave the area. “This is a storm of enormous destructive power and I ask everyone in the storm path to heed all instructions, get out of its way,” Trump said.   He thanked government officials working “around the clock” to respond to the storm and urged all Americans to listen to local officials.  “Property is replaceable but lives are not and safety has to come first, don’t worry about it, just get out of its way,” he said.

The president also spoke about the increasing threats from North Korea, pointing out that the United States was prepared to take steps to “keep the people of the world safe.”  Trump also urged Congress forward on “dramatic” tax reform and cutting regulations.  “I think now with what’s happened with the hurricane, I’m going to ask for it to speed up,” he said.

This is the second time that Trump spent time at Camp David for a lengthy meeting on policy. Prior to his speech on Afghanistan, Trump met with his national security team to hammer out a new strategy.

 

Sunday, Sept. 10 (Day 234):

Hillary Clinton calls Trump a ‘deplorable reality TV star’

Former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton trashed President Trump in an interview Sunday, calling him a “deplorable reality TV star.” “Well, I thought Trump was behaving in a deplorable manner. I thought a lot of his appeals to voters were deplorable. I thought his behavior as we saw on the ‘Access Hollywood’ tape was deplorable,” Clinton told CBS’s “Sunday Morning.” “And there were a large number of people who didn’t care. It did not matter to them. And he turned out to be a very effective reality TV star,” she added.  Clinton referred to her previous statements trashing Trump and his supporters on the 2016 campaign trail, doubling down on her claims that Trump voters are a “basket of deplorables” who are “irredeemable.”

The former presidential candidate was on the show promoting her book about the 2016 election, What Happened, which will be released September 12.

Clinton has hit the speaking circuit bashing Trump and his voters. At an event in New York City on Thursday, she told her audience that “angry voters” caused her defeat and that there needs to be “sacred resistance” against Trump.

Hillary Clinton said Sunday in her first TV interview since Election Day that she was just “gobsmacked, wiped out” after losing the presidential election to Donald Trump.  “I am done with being a candidate, but I’m not done with politics because I believe that our country’s future is at stake,” Clinton said during the interview at her home in Chappaqua, New York. 

Asked how she was doing, Clinton confessed that the loss still stings. “I think I am good, but that doesn’t mean I’m complacent or resolved about what happened,” she said. “It’s still painful.”  She said on election night she felt like she let everybody down.  “I had not drafted a concession speech,” Clinton said. “I had been working on a victory speech.”

She said post-election she went off on a “frenzy of closet cleaning,” drinking Chardonnay and walks in the woods. She recommends doing yoga. “I couldn’t feel, I couldn’t think,” Clinton said. “I was just gobsmacked, wiped out.” Clinton said she never thought of not going to Trump’s inauguration as a former first lady.

“And so there I was on the platform, you know, feeling like an out of body experience,” she said. “And then this speech [by Trump], a cry from the white nationalist gut.”

She said that during the campaign Trump was quite successful “referencing a nostalgia” that would give hope, comfort and settle grievances for millions of people upset about gains made by others. “Millions of white people,” Pauley asked. “Yeah, millions of white people,” Clinton replied.

“What Happened” is being published by Simon & Schuster, a division of CBS.  The memoir has some Democratic Party wags worried.  Coming so soon after the election, it’s poised to re-live the 2016 campaign drama in the media for weeks, if not months, to come – as Democrats try to prepare for the 2018 midterms while also battling the Trump agenda.

Clinton already is taking some criticism — complete with mockery from late-night television hosts — for planning book-tour stops in the Great Lakes and Midwestern states that ultimately cost her the election. But she writes that her campaign had more staff and spent more on advertising in both Michigan and Pennsylvania, two states she lost, than President Barack Obama did when he won them in 2012.

She acknowledges that “if there’s one place where we were caught by surprise, it was Wisconsin,” saying that polls showed her ahead until the end. But while she did not visit the state in the fall, she noted that her surrogates blanketed the state.

In Wisconsin, Democratic pollster Paul Maslin called it a “bitter irony” that Clinton is now trying to reach voters — or consumers — in states he believes her campaign mostly ignored.

Irvine Company seeking to attract Amazon.com to Orange County

Irvine Company and the State of California appear ready to go all-in with massive incentives to attract Amazon.com to build a $5-billion second headquarters for 50,000 employees in Orange County.

As the second-richest developer in the United States, Irvine Company sole shareholder Donald Bren usually avoids the public spotlight.  But on September 7 he told the Orange County Register that the Irvine Company can uniquely offer the type of prime corporate location, adjacent airport, city support, room to grow, and supportive government that would “appear to be the perfect location” for Amazon.

After California passed AB-153 to tax internet sales in 2011, Amazon’s CEO Jeff Bezos terminated 25,000 registered Amazon resellers in California. The brutal hardball tactic caused panic in Sacramento and forced California’s Board of Equalization to cut a deal. Amazon.com agreed to re-authorize terminated resellers and collect sales taxes on items that the company sells to California residents. But Amazon won the right to continue to not collect any sales taxes from companies that do not have a physical presence in the state. That includes millions of items listed for sale on its website, stored in its warehouses, and shipped to California residents as “fulfilled by” Amazon. That amounts to about 20 to 25 percent of items the company ships to California customers.

Armed with the what CNET refers to as a the fulfillment “tax loophole,” Amazon negotiated a $1.75 million “California Competes Tax Credit” with the state to leverage the loophole into opening a fulfillment center in San Bernardino in 2012, where unemployment was at a near-national-high of 12.3 percent. Over the next 5 years, Amazon has added California fulfillment centers in Tracy, Patterson, Moreno Valley, Redlands, Rialto, and another San Bernardino facility in 2016.

Amazon has mastered the “eye-popping incentives” game, according to a “Good Jobs First” study released in December 2016. In the last 15 years, Amazon has racked-up at least $850 million in government-negotiated subsidies for sales tax abatement, property tax abatements, tax increment financing, infrastructure improvements, training grants, and corporate income tax credits. Amazon has also received waivers of sales tax on building materials, machinery, and equipment for its facilities.

Good Jobs First researchers found the pace of Amazon subsidies increased in 2015 and 2016, as two dozen communities across the U.S. communities committed to $241,363,222 to attract new facilities or existing location expansions. The four biggest Amazon fulfillment and sortation center government subsidy deals were $43 million in Baltimore, Maryland; $32 million in Kenosha, Wisconsin; $22 million for locating in Pennsylvania; and $17 million for two facilities in Ohio.

Given that total employment by Amazon’s U.S. fulfillment network is only about 90,000 full-time employees,  earning wage rates of between $17 to $36 an hour, it should be assumed that Amazon would demand record government subsidies to locate a corporate headquarters for 50,000 high-paying jobs for executives and high-skilled staff.

According to Good Jobs First, California has given $2.67 billion in “corporate welfare” subsidies to attract businesses to the state over the past two decades. The biggest beneficiaries were “$889.3 million for aerospace and military contractors, and $389.4 million for entertainment and media.” The biggest single California deal was $415 million to Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman to build the next generation strategic bomber. That works out to 17.5 percent of all wages paid to workers over a 15-year period.

President monitoring Hurricane Irma

President Trump and his team on Sunday were closely monitored Hurricane Irma from Camp David and Federal Emergency Management Agency headquarters, with Vice President Pence saying the president has “great concern” and that wherever the storm goes, “we’ll be there first.” Pence spoke while he and several other Cabinet members visited FEMA headquarters in Washington, D.C., as the storm took aim at Florida.

“Wherever Hurricane Irma goes, we’ll be there first [with] the resources and support to save lives and to help and recover,” Pence told reporters. “This is a very dangerous storm, life-threatening. … Clearly, the briefing this morning caused the president to have great concern. … The people of Florida need to know that our hearts and prayers and all of our efforts will be with them until this storm passes.”

Among the Cabinet members joining Pence at the headquarters were Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin and Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt.  They were joined at the headquarters by Energy Secretary Rick Perry and acting Homeland Security Secretary Elaine Duke.

 

Monday, Sept. 11 (Day 235):

Donald and Melania Trump lead moment of silence for 9/11

President Donald Trump observed the 16th anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks for his first presidential remembrance of the attack that killed nearly 3,000 Americans.

The President and the First Lady led a moment of silence at the White House South Lawn at exactly 8:46 a.m.—the time that that the first plane hit the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001 as a military bugle played taps and everyone put their hands on their hearts.

“Our values will endure.  Our people will thrive,” Trump said speaking at the Ethe memory of our loved ones will never die.”

Trump was joined by Defense Secretary James Mathis and Joint Chiefs Chairman General Joseph Dunford.   “The terrorists who attacked us thought they could incite fear and weaken our spirit, but America cannot be intimidated,” Trump said, “ And those who try will soon join the long list of vanquished enemies who dared to test our mettle.”

(Editor’s Note:  See link to Pentagon 9-11 observance):

http://www.military.com/video/forces/department-of-defense/9-11-pentagon-memorial-ceremony-flag-unfurling/5572206243001

Tuesday, Sept. 12 (Day 236):

‘Americans no longer trust news media’

Only about 15 percent of Trump voters have any trust in the media at all according to a recent Edelman poll with Trump supporters generally less inclined to trust a headliner in general according to a Yale University study entitled “Assessing the Effect of ‘Disputed’ Warnings and Source Salience on Perceptions of Fake News Accuracy.” It is also estimated that 67 percent of Americans rely on social media as a news source.

According to psychologist David Rand, “People don’t find mainstream media outlets particularly credible.”

President Trump plans 13-state tour to promote tax reform plan

President Trump is planning a 13-state tour over the next seven weeks to promote his tax reform plan to America.  Florida, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania are among the states Trump is expected to visit. The president has already promoted tax reform in Missouri and North Dakota.

The tax reform plan has been developed by a group of four congressional Republicans along with Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin and White House Economic Advisor Gary Cohn.

Meanwhile, a group pushing tax reforms benefits to the middle class has launched a $2.5 million TV ad campaign targeting 23 congressional districts nationwide.

The ad “Too Complicated” from the American Action Network’s Middle-Class Growth Initiative, spotlights a Wisconsin small-business owner and his working family and argues that the current U.S. tax code burdens the nation’s small businesses.

“Our painful tax system has become a massive barrier to America’s economic comeback,” President Trump said in North Dakota last Wednesday.  “It really is.  We’re penalized.  It cost us millions of American jobs, trillions of dollars and billions of hours wasted on paperwork and on compliance.”

President Trump says he wants a tax code that is “simple, fair and easy to understand.”

Author Sarah Jaffe:  Florida looting crackdown is ‘white supremacy’

Author and journalist Sarah Jaffe tweeted on social media Monday that the anti- looting warning from Miami police:  “The carceral state…is inseparable from white supremacy.

The Miami Police Department took to Twitter on Sunday as Hurricane Irma battered the state:  “Thinking about looting?  Ask these guys how that turned out?”  The post shared a photo of people inside a jail cell.

 

Wednesday, Sept. 13 (Day 237):

UC Berkeley Poll:  53 percent of California Democrats oppose free speech

The majority of California Democrats oppose the First Amendment right of freedom of speech and assembly, at least as it applies to extreme right-wing groups says a University of California, Berkeley poll. A plurality of 46 percent of all Californians feels the same way.  Some 50 percent of California Republicans believe the right to demonstrate should not be restricted, compared with 39 percent of Democrats.  Some 58 percent of those describing themselves as “liberal” said that America had “gone too far in allowing white nationalist groups to hold public demonstrations.”

UC Berkeley is preparing to host a series of conservative speakers later this month including former Breitbart tech editor Milo Yiannopoulos, who was prevented from speaking on campus in February after Antifa activists and left-wing students rioted.

Meanwhile, the Berkeley city council voted 6-3 on Tuesday to allow police to use pepper spray for crowd control.  The council had banned police from using pepper spray for 20 years.

UC Berkeley is known as the birthplace of the campus Free Speech Movement in 1964.  In recent years, it has struggled to uphold the principles of that movement, at least with regard to conservative views and speakers.

Planned Parenthood teams with satanists to promote abortion in Missouri

A federal judge has sided with Planned Parenthood in Missouri as it has battled state regulations to require abortion clinics to meet the same surgical center standards as full hospitals and for doctors to have hospital privileges.

Meanwhile, the Satanic Temple is supporting Planned Parenthood and has declared “one’s body is inviolable, subject to one’s own will alone” and is arguing in court that Missouri abortion restrictions violates members’ right to free religious practice by requiring patients to look at anti-abortion literature and also to wait 72 hours between initial consultations and second appointments for their abortions.

For years, the Satanic Temple has been involved with lawsuits in Missouri fighting abortion regulations.  In 2015, they set up a crowdfunding website “to challenge arbitrary, insulting abortion regulations” especially the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.  Satanism has a long history of association with child sacrifice.

 

Thursday, Sept. 14 (Day 238):

California leads nation in poverty and welfare benefits

California remains America’s poverty leader, with 20.4 of residents in poverty, according to data just released by the United States Census Bureau.

About 46,686,000, or 14.7 percent, of U.S. residents live in poverty, down from 15.1 percent in last year’s survey. California, with 7,946,000, accounts for about one-in-six U.S. residents living in poverty. It saw little change from the last survey and now accounts for more impoverished residents than the next two states of Texas and Florida combined.

According to the National Bureau of Economic Research, California’s welfare benefits, are almost 280 percent higher than the package offered by Texas, 89 percent larger than the one in Illinois, and 20 percent larger than benefits in New York.

According to the latest Pew Research Center survey, of the 11.1 million illegal aliens in the United States, California, with about 11 percent of the U.S. population, had 2.35 million, or 22 percent, of the illegal alien population.

The National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) also reported, in “Immigrants Tend to Live in High Welfare Benefit States,” that “the generous welfare benefits offered by some states have magnetic effects and alter the geographic sorting of immigrants in the United States” – attracting many to California.

As California rose from offering medium benefit levels in 1970 to “almost the most generous in the nation” by 1990, the benefit levels served as a magnet for less-educated immigrants.

NBER had previously reported that there is a “clustering” relationship for immigrants receiving welfare, as opposed to those who are not. American native populations do not cluster in the same way as immigrants, because they find it expensive or costly in other ways to move from one state to another. But immigrants who have decided to make the costly move to the U.S. must only decide which state is most advantageous to them, and the extra cost of reaching that state may be small for an immigrant compared to a native.

NBER found a direct correlation between the increasing the relative generosity of California’s welfare system and attracting immigrants. By 1990, California was home to 9.6 percent of U.S. natives who did not receive welfare and 11.5 percent of U.S. natives who did receive welfare. Yet it was the also home to 27.6 percent of the nation’s immigrant households not receiving welfare and 37.6 percent of immigrant households that did receive welfare.

 

Speakers at UC Berkeley Free Speech Week (Sept. 24-27) announced

UC Berkeley Free Speech (Sept. 24-27) speakers have been announced.  The speakers will be split into four days, each with a different theme:

  • –Sunday, September 24 “Feminism Awareness Day”
    • Miss Elaine, Lucian Wintrich, Lisa De Pasquale, Chadwick Moore, and Milo
    • Yiannopoulos;
  • –Monday, September 25: “Zuck 2020”
  • Heather Mac Donald, Monica Crowley, SABO, James Damore, with a debate
  • moderated by Milo Yiannopoulos;
  • Tuesday, September 26: “Islamic Peace and Tolerance Day”
  • Raheem Kassam, Katie Hopkins, Erik Prince, Pamela Geller, David Horowitz,
  • and Milo Yiannopoulos;
  • Wednesday, September 27: “Mario Savio is Dead”
  • Mike Cernovich, Charles Murray, Ariana Rowlands, Stelion Onufrei, Alex
  • Marlow, Milo Yiannopoulos, Steve Bannon, and Ann Coulter.

The Free Speech event has been organized by former Breitbart News Senior Editor Milo Yiannoopoulos.  Free Speech Week will also reportedly include performances from Joy Villa and former Pussycat Dolls member Kaya Jones.

“Berkeley Free Speech Week will be an amazing experience for people of all viewpoints to come together in a festival environment and freely exchange ideas,” said Milo Yiannoopoulos.

President Trump defends DACA deal with Democrats

“We’re looking at allowing people to stay here,” Trump said to reporters in Florida on Thursday.  “We’re not looking at citizenship, we’re not looking at amnesty,” Trump said.

A White House spokesperson confirmed that “legal citizenship over a period of time” for DACA recipients would likely be part of a deal. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi insisted that the plan would offer them a “path to citizenship.”

“We’re talking about taking care of people, people that were brought here, people that have done a good job and were not brought here of their own volition,” he said, referring to illegal immigrants brought to the United States as children.

 “The wall to me is vital,” he said, noting that it would have to be funded soon for any deal with Democrats.  “We have to have an understanding that whether it’s in the budget or some other vehicle, in a fairly short period of time,” he said. “The wall will be funded. Otherwise, we’re not doing any deal.”

Friday, September 15 (Day 239):

Trump supporters begin burning MAGA hats in protest against amnesty

Donald Trump’s supporters have begun burning his signature MAGA hats in protest against his big-amnesty-for-no-wall deal with Democrats.  When President George W. Bush pushed for an amnesty in 2006 and 2007 his ratings fell to almost 30 percent despite the booming economy.

 

Michael Hernandez, Co-Founder of the Citizens Journal—Ventura County’s online news service, founder of History Makers International—a community nonprofit serving youth and families in West Ventura County, is a former Southern California daily newspaper journalist and religion and news editor. He has worked 23 years as a middle school teacher.  Mr. Hernandez can be contacted by email: [email protected]

Mr. Hernandez is dedicating himself to advance the 13 spheres –as a “City Upon A Hill”; developing an interactive California citizens news platform as an alternative to mainstream media; while building local school-community partnerships.


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