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15May/19

All Is Great!

Destroying the Presidency

Let me state that not everything is Trump's fault. But his administration and Republicans are not dealing with problems facing our country and the world. And in many cases are exacerbating the problem.

Totally inept, unprofessional executive branch.

Unpatriotic, greedy, power-hungry Republican party.

Although the American economy is chugging along, I am very concerned about the long-term effect of the Trump administration on our nation and the world.

Below I tried to shortly outline my points and my reason for worry.

Economy

The econom affects all of us. Many factors affect the American economy. Considering the fact that it is global now and all developed countries depend on each other, it is crucial for the countries to work together in trade, security, climate change, migration.

Other things that affect our economy in the long run.

The growing deficit and Government debt due to sanctions, trade wars among other things, and the uncertainty due to American chaotic behavior.

“In two separate papers published over the weekend, some of the world’s leading trade economists declared Trump’s tariffs to be the most consequential trade experiment seen since the 1930 Smoot-Hawley tariffs, which were blamed for worsening the Great Depression. They also found the initial cost of Trump’s duties to the U.S. economy was in the billions and being borne largely by American consumers.”

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-03-04/evidence-grows-that-trump-s-trade-wars-are-hitting-u-s-economy

Broken trade agreements – TPP, NAFTA leading to America being sidelined by China.

“Speaking at the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland last weekend, Xi said China would be happy to take over the leadership role in global trade that the United States has now relinquished. That will be good for China, but not so good for anyone else.”

https://www.forbes.com/sites/johnbrinkley/2017/01/24/trump-dumps-trans-pacific-partnership-sad/#3ed0495375dc

“Leaving the TPP also undercuts U.S. leverage with China. While China was not a party to the agreement, the TPP had led to a fierce debate in China about prospects for joining it, as well as the type of economic reform it needs. That reform incentive, which could have led China to become a fairer player in the global market, has vanished.” https://www.brookings.edu/blog/order-from-chaos/2017/02/07/the-high-costs-of-protectionism/

Alienating allies – Paris climate agreement, bashing NATO, praising bloody tyrants.

Trump hailed Kim as "a very worthy, very smart negotiator" and a "very talented man" who "loves his country very much," and vowed to meet with him "many times."

The remarks were unusual for a U.S. president. American officials have typically avoided such language to describe North Korean leaders, because of the country's long record of human rights abuses and frequent threats against the U.S. and its allies. https://thehill.com/homenews/news/391784-ex-gop-lawmaker-no-president-has-ever-praised-a-dictator-the-way-trump-has-with

US adversaries are watching us self-destruct as Trump foreign policy spins into chaos.

After a promise to restore America’s standing in the world, Trump has blundered into conflict with our competitors, insulted our allies, and generally has made the United States into a laughingstock. Why is this happening? Who’s in charge in Washington these days?

Adding to insults by Trump, key U.S. ambassador posts remain vacant. Over two years into President Donald Trump’s administration, U.S. ambassadorships to 52 countries and international organizations like the United Nations remain vacant. “By not appointing an ambassador to a country, you are saying that this country is not important to us, its issues are not important enough to us, we don’t care about it, and we are not going to bother to send an ambassador,”

Anti-immigration policies, dangerous hateful rhetoric,

Internal affairs.

Education: Lack of affordable education (despite promises during election campaign, no policies to combat shortage of technically skilled work force)

Price Of College Increasing Almost 8 Times Faster Than Wages

The average for all four-year institutions comes out to $26,120 per year. This brings the total cost of attendance to an astronomical total of $104,480 over four years. The comparable cost for the same four-year degree in 1989 was $26,902 ($52,892 adjusted for inflation). This means that between the academic years ending in 1989 and 2016, the cost for a four year degree doubled, even after inflation. Over that period, the average annual growth rate for the cost to attend a four-year university was 2.6% per year.

Many of the 6.8 million Americans looking for work do not possess the skills required to do most of the 6.0 million unfilled jobs. For a variety of reasons, many jobless Americans lack the skills necessary to do today’s unfilled jobs.

American farmers are in trouble.

The president’s trade policies have sent U.S. agricultural exports plunging, exacerbating already difficult economic conditions facing farmers. Average farm income has fallen to near 15-year lows under Trump, and in some areas of the country, farm bankruptcies are soaring. https://www.politico.com/story/2019/02/06/farm-crisis-trump-trade-policies-1147987

Society

Dangerous rhetoric from the White House leading to: Hate groups are multiplying.

US counties where President Donald Trump held a campaign rally saw a 226% increase in reported hate crimes compared to similar counties that did not hold a rally, political scientists at the University of North Texas said in a Washington Post analysis.” https://www.businessinsider.com/trump-campaign-rally-hate-crimes-study-maga-2019-3?fbclid=IwAR26NzfPSgsO530aQO9w8XrTo83nUQCJwnY_v4OSEXXp1muX5WMk3NhIINg

Income disparity is widening and exacerbated by recent tax cuts.

“Income inequality in the United States is getting worse, and Trump’s policies have something to do with it, according to new research from Moody’s Investors Service, the bond-rating agency. While middle-income earners got a modest tax cut from last year’s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, higher earners got a much larger windfall. And that comes as other forces have been widening the gap between the rich and the rest.” “Should inequality go unaddressed,” the Moody’s report asserts, “social tensions will continue to rise, leading to a more fractious political landscape that increases political risk, and with it a less predictable policy environment.https://finance.yahoo.com/news/rich-poor-gap-getting-worse-trump-193238702.html

Irreconcilable differences between right and left groups that are moving in opposite directions.

The United States is driven by the politics of extremes. To paraphrase humor columnist Dave Barry, Republicans think of Democrats as godless, unpatriotic, Volvo-driving, France-loving, elitist latte guzzlers, whereas Democrats dismiss Republicans as ignorant, NASCAR-obsessed, gun-fondling religious fanatics. An exaggeration, for sure, but the reality is still pretty stark. Congress is in a perpetual stalemate because of the two parties' inability to find middle ground on practically anything.

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/calling-truce-political-wars/

Undermining trust in American institutions and free press.

Calling the press “enemy of the people” is very dangerous.

“The phrase has old roots, even appearing in a Shakespeare play, but it became well known in the 20th century when it was adopted by dictators from Stalin to Mao, and Nazi propagandists, to justify their murderous purges of millions.”https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2018/aug/03/trump-enemy-of-the-people-meaning-history

https://www.newsweek.com/donald-trump-soured-secret-service-director-removing-him-office-called-him-1389970?fbclid=IwAR3bwGeviKmKKJfq56vmd1droV4gydBNRnYSYnMdd6VAR99zc2-sHZW4LjU

Moral bankruptcy of current White House affects Americans. rots American society.

Disrespect of the office of President. This White House is a laughing stock for the world.

“The fish rots from the head”: a historian on the unique corruption of Trump’s White House

History will judge Trump, and it will not be kind.

I spoke with Dallek about the history of corruption in American presidential politics and why he sees the Trump administration as “a low point in our history.” What makes Trump exceptionally dangerous, Dallek argues, is how effortlessly he lies and what kind of tone he has set in this White House.

https://www.vox.com/2017/11/16/16643614/trump-administration-corruption-russia-investigation

Danger of a major military conflict. The after war world order that includes United Nations, NATO and was created under the leadership of the United States. So disputes between nations are resolved by the World Trade Organization, not by military conflict.

NATO assured safety for Europe and is under assault by Trump administration.

NATO and the US problems - https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-02-16/china-and-russia-team-up-for-push-to-split-u-s-from-nato-allies

Withdrawing from arms agreements – global arms treaty, treaty with Russia.

https://www.pbs.org/newshour/nation/trump-says-u-s-is-withdrawing-from-arms-trade-treaty?fbclid=IwAR3FPsfg8a5wG9JSTX5NCtz2alFT2Wg4ua4XddBckotKyF-RAQ64OOhfnwA

https://www.armscontrol.org/act/2018-11/news/trump-withdraw-us-inf-treaty

Populists win in other counties (trump example) While there is no clear answer to the reasons of rising populism around the world (and there are many), the fact that populist (Trump) is the President of the most powerful country in the world is a dangerous precedent that may lead to accelerating this trend and undermining the world stability.

Russia becoming more aggressive

China and the Western world tensions.

Broken nuclear agreement with Iran and plans to share nuclear technology with Saudi Arabia.

If Saudis get nuclear technology there are several dangerous possibilities: Iran will accelerate it's plans to acquire nuclear weapons, Saudis might decide to blackmail Israel. Both are not good options for Israel.

Unwillingness of current administration to take cyber security seriously.

If anything, our enemies are only going to do more, not less.

https://www.wired.com/story/white-house-cybersecurity-coordinator/

Science

Anti-immigration policies and some changes in countries like China, Brazil are turning away foreign students, graduates, scientists, engineers (?)

https://www.voanews.com/a/more-international-college-graduates-staying-to-work-in-us-/4562484.html

President inciting violence. https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/donald-trump-incitement-violence/

https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/donald-trump-incitement-violence/

Saving America from itself: Trump is a symptom, not the disease. By Garry Kasparov.

It is therefore vital to produce a positive agenda for real action. We want to look to the past not for solutions, but for inspiration. Young people desire grand challenges and we have failed to offer them outlets for their ambition and creativity. The Founders believed that each generation would find ways to keep democracy alive and it's time to prove them right. We must make building things up more attractive than burning them down. After you're done watching "The Avengers: Infinity War," it's time to really save the world. https://www.nydailynews.com/opinion/saving-america-trump-symptom-not-disease-article-1.3972109?fbclid=IwAR2819ovR_vZdiqSxAzdBWZgewcDiUPnlWq7yp2LcbMzwGXIge2jEi2T0vk

In conclusion I just want to state again that Democracy is fragile and in need of being protected by people. We need to be informed, to be willing to participate, to voice our informed opinions, to vote.

Democracy is not just politics. And those of us who have experienced dictatorships understand it.

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