Wednesday, November 30, 2016

POLL: Over 8-in-10 Americans Believe The Country Is More Deeply Divided Than Ever

According to a new CNN/ORC poll more than 8-in-10 Americans say the country is more deeply divided on major issues this year than in the past several...

How bad is the divide... Let us count the ways.

The study shows that those who were polled universally sense the country is sharply divided, with 85% saying so overall, including 86% of independents, 85% of Republicans and 84% of Democrats.

Those 8-in-10 who see deeper divides now spans all categories including gender, racial, age and education.

These results shows that rate is much higher than it was in 2000, The last time the US elected a president who did not win the popular vote, when only 64% thought the nation more sharply split.

The biggest difference can be found across ideological lines, with 91% of liberals saying the country is more divided on top issues compared with 80% of conservatives.

Oddly enough the poll's finds that nearly 8-in-10 who were questioned hope that the GOP-controlled government incorporate some Democratic policies into its agenda.

Those polled, however, are evenly split on whether single-party control of government is good or bad for the country, with 49% on each side of that question.

When it comes to the President-elect only 40% say that Trump's win gives him a claim to a mandate that would allow him to pursue the policies his supporters favor, while 53% say that since he didn't win the popular vote, he should get behind an agenda that might attract new supporters.

Not surprisingly the Republicans polled that want to incorporate Democratic policies into their agenda was lower than the percentage of Democrats who thought to do the same in 2008 when they took control of the White House and both houses of Congress.

Only 55% of Republicans now think their party's leaders ought to work with the Democrats vs. 74% Democrats in 2008 who said that their leaders should bring in GOP policies.

In the wake of the election Democrats, not surprisingly, express greater dissatisfaction with the way democracy in the US is working than do Republicans. The exact numbers are 63% of Democrats dissatisfied vs. 47% of Republicans.

Only a third of Americans, 34%, say there are at least some issues where both parties share their views and only about a quarter say they personally agree with both Trump and President Barack Obama on at least some issues.

The rest of the poll only goes on to provide further proof of what we all pretty much knew. We are a nation divided and the numbers have only gotten worse over the last several years. If this were only a single poll that spat out these bleak numbers we might take solace in that... but that is not the case.

Seemingly, the majority of polling that has come out in recent months only shows a widening gap between the left and right in this country and it looks - and feels - like it's going to get worse before it gets better.

ECONOMY: GDP Rises At At 3.2% Annual Pace, Strongest In More Than 2 Years (Chart)

The economy grew at the fastest pace in over two years in the third quarter as consumers and government stepped up their spending and exports surged.

A Commerce Department’s release shows that gross domestic product, the monetary measure of the market value of all final goods and services produced in a quarterly period, expanded at a 3.2% annual rate. That is the strongest pace since the second quarter of 2014 and beat the consensus estimate of a 3.1% growth rate previously estimated among economists.

In addition consumer spending, which accounts for two-thirds of the economy, rose 2.8% in the quarter. That number was stronger than the original estimate of 2.1% and the strongest rate since 2002.

The consumer sector has been bolstering economic growth for several quarters now.

Another big contribution to the economy was business investment in structures like offices and factories, which expanded at a 10.1% pace. This too was faster than the initial estimate of 5.4%.

As would be expected, corporate profits soared 6.6% in the third quarter, a much better performance than the 0.6% decline in the previous quarter.

Residential investment, like housing starts, contracted 4.4% in the second revision which was better than the 6.2% decline initially reported.

Exports, which are at the strongest point in three years, were marked up slightly, to a 10.1% gain from 10.0%. Imports, which detract from overall GDP growth, were marked down slightly, to a 2.1% gain from 2.3%.

Economists were feeling good about the numbers reported by the Commerce department...

Stephen Stanley, chief economist for Amherst Pierpont Securities, in a research note stated...

I was willing to entertain the possibility that as energy prices rose, real spending would moderate a tad. However, just when the data seemed to be pointing in that direction (with the 2.1% Q3 initial print), we learn that in actuality, spending increased at close to the 3% clip in the summer after all.

With wages and salaries growing at an annual 6.7% pace, Stanley noted...

the consumer is likely to continue to spend for the foreseeable future. The fundamentals for the household sector are as good as I’ve seen in quite some time.

Regions’ Chief Economist Richard Moody wrote...

As we see it, current quarter growth will have a familiar look to it, i.e., top-line growth not far from 2.0 percent and with consumers doing the heavy lifting. There are both upside and downside risks for growth in 2017 and 2018, but without a specific set of fiscal and regulatory proposals, it is simply too soon to fully assess the impacts on growth.

Much like the economy George W. Bush inherited from Bill Clinton, Donald Trump is inheriting an economy that is chugging along rather nicely. Let's hope he doesn't do the same thing Bush did and kill this fledgling economy just as it's starting to take flight.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Donald Trump Says Something Stupid #54: Says He'll Revoke Your Citizenship Or Put You In Jail If You Burn The American Flag (TWEET)

President-elect Donald Trump proposed on Tuesday a penalty -- including possible jail time or loss of citizenship -- for burning the American flag, in spite of two US Supreme Court rulings that protect the act under the First Amendment as a form of free speech...

First let's dispense with the absurd threat of loss of citizenship or jail time for burning the American flag if solely for Trump's education.

In cases before The Supreme Court court in 1989 in "Texas v. Johnson," and 1990 in "United states v. Eichman," the justices affirmed the right to desecrate the American flag as a form of free speech.

In the "United states v. Eichman," case the justices again ruled in favor of the right to burn the flag when it handed down it's 5-4 decision that the Flag Protection Act of 1989, which was passed by Congress in response to the Johnson decision, was unconstitutional.

In Trump's suggestion that citizens could possibly face a "loss of citizenship" as a penalty for immolating old glory is also a non-starter. In addition Trump's ignorance of the Supreme Court's teaching that flag burning is constitutionally protected speech, he also seems not to know that it would be unconstitutional to deprive someone of their citizenship without some voluntary act on their part to renounce their allegiance to the United States or pledge fealty to a foreign sovereign.

The reasoning some attribute to Trump's tweet is that he has been following an ongoing Fox News "outrage" story about a flag burning on November 10th on the campus of Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts, as part of a protest against Trump's election win. The university then decided to stop flying the American flag at the campus, which made Fox News and their viewers even more inflamed.

So talking head's and pundits assumed that Donald was just tweeting out some of his own righteous moral indignation this morning...

But why 19 days later?

More and more people are starting to see these monumentally absurd tweets as a sign that Trump or his campaign are trying to misdirect the media's attention from some bigger more damaging story. If they are correct there are a plethora of narratives floating around that could cause Trump some agita.

• There is the New York Times piece on Trump's potential conflicts around the globe.

• The fact that Trump poised to violate Constitution his first day in office.

• His new cabinet pick for HHS says he will dismantle both Obamacare and Medicare.

• Then there are the multitude of broken campaign promises from not keeping Obamacare to not building "the wall" to not mass deporting immigrants to not banning Muslims to not "locking up" Hillary Clinton.

Or perhaps we give Donald too much credit. Maybe he just needed an outrage fix from his minions. Maybe he just need confirmation that they were still out there hanging on his every tweet.

This scenario is not unthinkable when it comes to a man-baby as shallow and needy for affirmation as Donald Trump.

RECOUNT: Wisconsin Officials Okay Presidential Election Vote Recount

Wisconsin election officials announced today that they would oversee a recount of the presidential vote in their state but declined a request to conduct the new tally by hand stating that can only be ordered by a court.

The Wisconsin Elections Commission signed off on an effort that will have local officials coordinating the recount with them this week and starting the actual recount near the end of the week.

State officials must have their new tally completed by December 13, according to federal law.

Jill Stein, who cited the potential that the state's voting machines may have been hacked in their request for the recount, said in a statement…

"After a presidential election tarnished by the use of outdated and unreliable machines and accusations of irregularities and hacks, people of all political persuasions are asking if our election results are reliable. We must recount the votes so we can build trust in our election system,"

Elections Commission chairman Mark Thomsen strongly defended his states vote count. Interestingly his recriminations seemed to take aim not at Jill Stein's recount effort but instead at a late night tweet tirade by Donald Trump in which he he claimed “millions of people” voted illegally…

"To say we didn't count them correctly the first time... that somehow illegal votes were counted... is really inappropriate. I don't think we'll find in this that our fellow citizens counted these votes (in)accurately -- going to reassure -- not counting illegal votes ... We're not counting dead people's votes."

The fight in Wisconsin is now likely to move to smaller venues as lawyers for Stein, Hillary Clinton and the Republican Party prepare to argue just how the votes are counted here in the next two weeks.

Stein's also announced today that her lawyers had filed a legal petition on behalf of 100 voters in Pennsylvania seeking a recount in that state as well.

Monday, November 28, 2016

Donald Trump Says Something Stupid# 53: Falsely Claims "Millions Of People" Voted Illegally Which Cost Him The Popular Vote (TWEETS)

Apparently losing the popular vote by record numbers and the vote recount in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania has thrown President-elect Donald Trump into a tizzy.

Last night the thin skinned man-baby had another one of his Twitter melt-downs in which to explain away the popular election loss he alleged that "millions of people" voted illegally for Hillary Clinton...

He later added these ego stroking posts...

Trump’s "illegal voter" lie seems to have originated from a story started on the wing-nut conspiracy website Infowars, which published an article claiming that Trump actually won the popular vote because...

three million votes in the U.S. presidential election were cast by illegal aliens.” 

The story's veracity was immediately challenged and ultimately proved false.

We're guessing the irony is lost on Trump that he previously claimed in the days immediately following the election, that the contest was “very open and successful.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

RECOUNT: Clinton Team Joins The Presidential Election Recount Effort; Trump Calls It A "Scam"

Over the last few weeks, lawyers and data scientists have been urging the Clinton campaign to consider recounts in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania due to a questionable trend of Clinton performances in those state's counties that relied on electronic voting machines. The results showed that Clinton received 7% fewer votes in those counties indicating a strong chance that could have been the result of hacking and/or vote manipulation.

Hillary Clinton's campaign, who had been silent about the recount effort, said today that they will take part in the efforts to push for recounts in those states, joining with Green Party candidate Jill Stein, who has raised millions of dollars (5.4 million as of today) for the cause.

The Clinton's campaign said that because a recount was set into motion as of Friday they would be taking part in the effort to ensure that a "fair" result was reached for all the voters who participated in the election process.

Clinton's campaign lawyer Marc Elias posted on Medium blog that they felt compelled to be a part of the investigation due to the fact that this election cycle had been marred by such a unique degree of foreign interference in which Russian state actors hacked not only the the Democratic National Committee but infiltrated and disseminated the personal email accounts of Hillary' Clinton's campaign officials as well. He also pointed out that, as a deciding factor, yesterday the Washington Post reported that the Russian government was behind much of the “fake news” propaganda that circulated online in the closing weeks of the election.

Elias went on to say...

"We believe we have an obligation to the more than 64 million Americans who cast ballots for Hillary Clinton to participate in ongoing proceedings to ensure that an accurate vote count will be reported."

The Clinton campaign concluded that if Jill Stein follows through as she has promised and pursues recounts in Pennsylvania and Michigan, they would take the same approach in those states as well.

President-elect Donald Trump, as if he could have possibly stayed silent on this development, dismissed the recount and exclaimed...

"The election is over. The people have spoken and the election is over, and as Hillary Clinton herself said on election night, in addition to her conceding by congratulating me, 'We must accept this result and then look to the future,'

Trump continued calling the recount efforts  "ridiculous" and a "scam" by Jill Stein "to fill her coffers with money,"

FACT CHECK: The Stein campaign said money beyond the filing fees would go toward covering attorney costs associated with a recount as well as "election integrity efforts and to promote voting system reform,"

Much to the chagrin and perhaps trepidation of the Trump campaign the Green Party's presidential nominee also has plans to file a recount effort in Michigan, where some media outlets have yet to officially call a winner, as well as Pennsylvania.

RECOUNT: Unprecedented Presidential Election Recount To Begin After Evidence Found That Votes May Have Been Manipulated Or Hacked

Hillary Clinton's campaign is being urged by a number of top computer scientists to call for a recount of vote totals in the three rust belt states Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania.

The reason for the concern by the computer scientists is that they believe they have found evidence that vote totals in the three states could have been manipulated or hacked. The group, who adamantly claimed not to be motivated by any partisan motives, alerted John Podesta, Clinton's campaign chairman, and Marc Elias, the campaign's general counsel, last Thursday.

The group of voting scientists, who include University of Michigan's J. Alex Halderman and voting rights activist John Bonifaz, believe there is a questionable trend of Clinton performing worse in counties that relied on electronic voting machines compared to paper ballots and optical scanners.

The hinkey results produced a final tally that gave Clinton 7% fewer votes in counties that relied on electronic voting machine,. The group maintains there is a strong chance that could have been the result of hacking.

While the group told Podesta and Elias that they had not found any evidence as of yet they maintain that the pattern needs to be looked at by an independent review regardless.

A major factor for pressing for a recount lies in the widespread concerns about Russia's hacking of the Democratic National Committee as well as the email account of the aforementioned John Podesta. That added to the Obama administration's accusal of Russia's attempted breach of voter registration data makes a recount a no-brainer.

In a strange bedfellows turn of events it has been the Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein who has taken up the mantle of chief detective in the recount mystery.

With the recounts cost being an estimated $2 million dollars for all three states the Stein campaign set up a fundrasing effort through it's campaign website. The goal of $2 million was met and surpassed within hours and now stands at close to $5 million dollars.

With that out of the way Wisconsin has accepted Stein's petition for a statewide recount of votes state officials said Friday.

Wisconsin Election Commission's Administrator Michael Haas said in a statement the recount is expected to begin late next week...

"The Commission is preparing to move forward with a statewide recount of votes for President of the United States, as requested by these candidates,

As far as conducting recounts in the other two states petitions and funding will be sent to both Michigan, where the filing cost will be $600,000 where the challenge deadline is Monday and Pennsylvania, where the filing cost is $500,000 where the deadline is Wednesday.

The news of the recount has apparently grabbed the attention of the Trump campaign which led his campaign manager, Kellyanne Conway, to fire off this obnoxious tweet...

I may be wrong but do I smell a little fear here. 

I don't understand why they would complain since it was their campaign that for weeks cried that the election was rigged.

BUSTED! New IRS Filings Show Trump’s Charity Violated Ban On "Self Dealing" (TAX FORMS)

Remember during the presidential campaign when Donald Trump accused Hillary Clinton of being "crooked" for the way she and Bill Clinton ran their charity. Remember how he called it a “the most corrupt enterprise in political history”. Remember when he said that "the Clinton Foundation is a disgrace."

Yeah, about that.

It turns out that a new Washington Post story shows that it was in fact Donald Trump’s charitable foundation that was "crooked".

Very crooked.

Last week the "Trump Charitable Foundation" admitted to the Internal Revenue Service that it violated a legal prohibition against “self-dealing,” which bars nonprofit leaders from using their charity’s money to financially benefit themselves, their family or their businesses.

In other words Donald Trump Foundation admitted he personally used his charities money to buy stuff and pay off his debts.

The admission was contained in the Donald J. Trump Foundation’s IRS tax filings for 2015, which were recently posted online at the nonprofit-tracking site GuideStar. A GuideStar spokesman said the forms were uploaded by the Trump Foundation’s law firm, Morgan, Lewis & Bockius.

In 2014, in the section of the form where the IRS asks whether the Trump Foundation had transferred “income or assets to a disqualified person.” i.e. Trump or a member of his family or a Trump-owned business, the Trump Foundation checked “no” to these questions...

Click image for larger view

But for 2015, the Trump Foundation checked “yes

Click image for larger view

The 64,000 dollar question is why the Trump Foundation was now admitting to self-dealing in prior years when previously it had told the IRS it had done nothing of the kind.

From 2009 until this year, the charity was funded exclusively with other people’s money since Trump added zero dollars to the fund from 2008 on. This is an arrangement that experts say is almost unheard of for a family foundation.

In essence the charity became Trump's personal slush fund.

Despite the revelation on the IRS tax form it's not like it was a big secret during the campaign as The Post revealed several instances where Trump used his Foundation to help himself to the tune of $300,000.

In two cases, The Post reported, the Trump Foundation appeared to pay legal settlements to end lawsuits that involved his for-profit businesses...

In one case, Trump settled a dispute with the town of Palm Beach, Fla., over a large flagpole he erected at his Mar-a-Lago Club. The town agreed to waive $120,000 in unpaid fines if Trump’s club donated $100,000 to Fisher House. The Trump Foundation paid that donation. This effectively saved Trump's business $120,000.

In another, Trump’s golf course in New York’s Westchester County was sued by a man who had won a $1 million hole-in-one prize during a tournament at the course. The man was later denied the money because Trump’s course had allegedly made the hole too short for the prize to be valid. The lawsuit was settled, and details on that final settlement have not been made public but on the day that the parties told the court that their lawsuit had been settled, the Trump Foundation donated $158,000 to the unhappy golfer’s charity. Trump’s golf course donated nothing.

In three other cases, Trump’s foundation paid for items that Trump or his wife purchased at charity auctions...

In 2012, Trump bid $12,000 for a football helmet signed by then-Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow.

In another case from 2007, Trump’s wife, Melania, bid $20,000 on a six-foot-tall portrait of Trump painted by “speed painter” Michael Israel during a gala at Mar-a-Lago.

And in 2014, Trump bid $10,000 to buy a four-foot painting of himself by artist Havi Schanz at another charity gala.

In all three cases, the Trump Foundation paid the bill and never put the items to charitable use. Trump’s representatives have not said what became of the helmet or the $20,000 portrait. The $10,000 portrait was, however, located hanging on the wall of the sports bar at Trump’s Doral golf resort, outside Miami.

To make matters even more grotesque, in the new 2015 tax filing, the Trump Foundation who for the first time acknowledged that it owned these items listed market values far below what the foundation had paid!!! The $12,000 helmet was valued at $475, the portrait purchased for $20,000 was valued at $700, and the portrait purchased for $10,000 was valued at $500.

With all this coming to light as Trump enter's the White House we can rest assured that the congress will investigate these charges as doggedly as they did those of the Clinton Global Initiative...

No, I will not be holding my breath.

Friday, November 25, 2016

BREAKING NEWS: Fidel Castro Has Died

Fidel Castro, Cuba's former president and leader of the Communist revolution, has died at age 90.

His brother, Raul Castro, released a statement saying...

"The commander in chief of the Cuban revolution died at 22:29 hours this evening"

Castro told the nation in an unexpected late night broadcast on state television that Fidel Castro had died and would be cremated on Saturday ending the announcement by shouting the revolutionary slogan "Towards victory, always!"

Fidel Castro had essentially been retired from political life for some time.

Castro temporarily handed over power to his brother in 2006 as he was recovering from an acute intestinal ailment. His brother Raul officially became president two years later.

In his final years Fidel Castro wrote newspaper commentaries on world affairs and occasionally met with foreign leaders but ultimately lived in semi-seclusion.

Castro was the longest serving non-royal leader of the 20th Century.

Fidel Castro ruled Cuba as a one-party state for almost 50 years before Raul took over in 2008.

With Raul Castro having already said he will step down in 2018 many believe it is likely that Cuba will entirely abandon communism altogether.

Poll: Obama's Approval Rating Hits It's Highest Mark In Seven Years!

According to a CNN/ORC national poll released President Barack Obama’s approval rating is at a seven-year high.

President Obama is enjoying an approval rating of 57 percent, his highest mark since sporting a 58 percent approval in September 2009.

The President's windfall probably comes as a byproduct of American's enduring a brutal and divisive election between two candidates with historically high disapproval ratings. In other words he's looking real good to Americans these days.

In addition the president is also enjoying a favorability rating of almost 60 percent, his highest since October 2009.

To put it in even starker contrast President Obama has a net favorability of +21 percentage points (59 percent favorable, 38 percent unfavorable), which far outpacing the countries views of the Democratic (-15 percentage points) and Republican (-11 percentage points) parties.

Then there is incoming President-elect Donald Trump's numbers...

• 54 percent of respondents still don’t believe he cares about people like them
• 49 percent on whether they believe he can bring about the change America needs
• 57 percent said he isn’t honest and trustworthy
• 66 percent don’t see him as an admirable person
• 54 percent think he will divide the country rather than of unite it

Believe it or not these numbers are marked improvements from his pre-election polls only a few weeks ago. Suffice it to say that if this is Trump's honeymoon post election bounce he is in for a rough ride once he lands in the Oval Office.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

New Report Reveals Trump Turning Away Daily Intelligence Briefings. Cites Lack Of Interest

President-elect Donald Trump has intelligence analysts available to him on a daily basis in order to brief him on new international intelligence and provide analysis of sensitive international situations pertaining to the United States. But a new report from The Washington Post reveals that Trump has been refusing to sit in on the meetings.

The report also shows that Trump has received only two briefings since winning the election two weeks ago.

I guess this should not be unexpected from the man who said during the election “I know more about ISIS than the generals do, believe me.

Trump's Vice President-elect Mike Pence, on the other hand, has made time for the briefings every day since the election.

Despite rumors of Trump being overwhelmed by his situation members of Trump's team say the president-elect is instead been focused on the transition and selecting the members of the administration's Cabinet. They maintain that he still has plenty of time to get up to speed on the international affairs and security threats before he takes office.

Rep. Devin Nunes, the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee and a senior member of Trump’s transition team, dismissed the issue saying he is not concerned...

National security is Donald Trump’s No. 1 priority and I think he’s taking it very seriously. Look how many leaders he’s met with, how many phone calls he’s done, positions he’s filled. People who are being critical need to get a life.

Get a life indeed!

Critics say Trump, who has no foreign policy and national security experience, should be taking the opportunity to study security issues.

Former deputy CIA director Michael Morell told the Post...

The last three presidents-elect used the intelligence briefings offered during the transition to literally study the national security issues that they would be facing and the world leaders with whom they would be interacting as president,” 
The president-elect is missing out on a golden opportunity to learn about the national security threats and challenges facing our nation... knowledge that would be extremely valuable to have when he takes the oath of office and when he steps into the Situation Room for the first time.

The only recent President that was even close to being as far behind in receiving his intelligence briefings was  George W. Bush who didn't begin receiving the briefings until Dec. 5, but that was due to the drawn out Florida recall. That being said Dubya's foreign and domestic policy disasters aren't something the citizens of this country would soon like to repeat any time soon.

Alas, for those of us who assumed that Vice President-Elect Mike Pence would actually be the one to have to run the country if Trump got elected I think we are being proven correct... And perhaps that is a good thing.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Hillary Clinton Now Leads Trump By More Than 2 Million Ballots In The Popular Vote

As of November 22, 2016 Hillary Clinton’s lead over Donald Trump has surpassed 2.1 million votes. With 64,414,444 ballots now counted in her favor, compared to 62,313,357 for Trump, which is over 1.5 percent of the overall vote, according to the nonpartisan Cook Political Report.

What's more is that her lead is only projected to increase due to the fact that there are still millions of ballots left to count, and they’re expected to be disproportionately for Clinton.

With this being the second time in two decades that a Democratic candidate had garnered more votes, only to lose the presidency to the Republican challenger with Democrat Al Gore being the other in 2000. Gore received 500,000 more votes than Republican George W. Bush, but came up short in the Electoral College due to a hotly contested race in Florida.

At the time, Gore’s margin of victory in the popular vote was the largest for any candidate that had gone on to lose the election.

The results of that election paired with the overwhelming popular vote victory by Hillary clinton in this one has only served to embolden critics the Electoral College and the calls to do away with the outdated system.

What is most interesting about this latest vote count is that it comes amid speculation about a potential challenge to the election results. A group of computer scientists and election lawyers have gone to the Clinton campaign with claims that voting may have been compromised in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania.

The discrepancies have bolstered the call for a recount in those states.

Watch this space!

Trump Won With Lowest Minority Vote In Over 40 Years

A review of polling data shows that Donald Trump won the U.S. presidency with less support from black and Hispanic voters than any president in at least 40 years.

According to the Reuters/Ipsos Election Day poll Trump was elected with 8 percent of the black vote, 28 percent of the Hispanic vote and 27 percent of the Asian-American vote.

Among black voters, his showing was comparable to the 9 percent captured by George W. Bush in 2000 and Ronald Reagan in 1984. But Bush and Reagan both did far better with Hispanic voters, capturing percentages in the mid-30's according to exit polling data compiled by the non-partisan Roper Center for Public Opinion Research.

In addition Trump’s performance among Asian-Americans was the worst of any winning presidential candidate since tracking of that demographic began in 1992.

These findings only provides more proof of the deep racial divide between Democrats and Republicans.

It also gives context to the wave of repulsive racial and bigoted attacks against minorities groups that have flooded America after Donald Trump and the Republicans won the election.

Trump’s racially divisive and polarizing campaign and resulting victory has helped set the stage for tensions that have surfaced repeatedly since the election, in white supremacist victory celebrations, and in hundreds of racist, xenophobic and anti-Semitic hate crimes across the country.

The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), which documents extremist movements reports there have been 701 incidents of “hateful harassment and intimidation” between the day following the Nov. 8 election and Nov. 16, with a spike in such incidents in the immediate wake of the vote.

TRAITOR! Trump Now Says He Wont "Lock Up" Hillary Clinton Over Emails. Followers Betrayed! ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Don't look now but President-elect Donald Trump is doing a complete 180 on his campaign promise of locking up Hillary Clinton over her emails which is probably a good thing because as President it isn't his freaking job to tell the DOJ who to prosecute anyway.

That being said, after misleading his followers who joyously chanted “Lock her up! Lock her up!” during his presidential campaign rallies, Donald just isn’t really feeling it anymore. The whole “She deleted the emails, she has to go to jail" thing just doesn't sound as much fun as it used to.

Politico has reported that according to an anonymous source “with direct knowledge of Donald Trump’s thinking,” (whatever that means) Trump had all but decided to decline to

pursue criminal investigations against Clinton over her use of the private server or into her family’s charitable foundation.

Trump only yesterday confirmed to reporters from The New York Times that he is going to drop the matter saying...

It’s just not something that I feel very strongly about,

Of course, the news that Trump would be reneging on his promise to put Clinton in the stripy hole if elected was not received well by his minions.

Most hurt by his change in position on the subject was the alt-right site Breitbart News, who made clear their sense of betrayal with this headline...

Poor babies.

As for those who voted for him just to see Hillary in stripes Trump believes his reversal won’t upset any of those supporters...

I don't think they will be disappointed. I think I will explain it that we in many ways will save our country,” Trump added that in fact he didn't want to, as he put it, “hurt the Clintons.

Now given this most magnanimous move by Trump on Clinton's behalf please remember that it would have been the Department of Justice that choose whether or not to bring a case against Clinton and only if it thought it has enough evidence to prosecute her.

Trump and his followers are apparently the only one's not to realize this.

But many in the media have been pointing out that Trump my have known this all along and is now just playing this to look like a kinder and gentler "leader" (Oy Vey!). They believe that his announcement not to pursue prosecution against Hillary Clinton, which again is not his choice to make, was only made to put a good happy face on his divisive and disruptive campaign and distract from what an unholy mess his transition team is and his cabinet positions are.

A win win for a yuuuge loser.

TRICKY DON! Trump Says That When It Comes To His Business Dealings: When The President Does It, That Means That It Is Not Illegal

Let's count the ways since Election Day that President-elect Donald Trump has engaged in sketchy business dealings with foreign governments in efforts to either curry favor or perhaps bully them into doing lucrative favors for his businesses...

• Trump has encouraged foreign diplomats to stay at his hotels when they meet with him either in New York or in Washington D.C.

• Trump has pressed UK Independence Party leader Nigel Farage at Trump Tower to oppose a wind farm that could block the view from his golf course, 

• Trump has met with Indian businessmen about building a Trump branded luxury apartment complex near Mumbai. 

• Trump had his daughter Ivanka, who has no government security clearance and will be taking over much of the management of his business sit in on meetings with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe 

• Trump has asked Argentine head of state President Mauricio Macri to “authorize a building he’s constructing in Buenos Aires.” Ivanka was on the conference call with them as well.

I ask only if you could imagine the panels that would have been convened, the investigations that would have been undertaken and the hours of coverage Fox News would have dedicated to these meetings if Hillary Clinton had been involved.

But that is not the world we live in so when Trump was confronted with what can only be described as lapses in judgement he took to Twitter, of course, first blame the media...

And then claimed that since he is now the president it's all legal. Here is what Trump said in an interview with the New York Times on the subject as reported my Maggie Haberman...

Note that claiming that when the President does it that means it is not illegal is the exact defense offered by President Richard Nixon who, as we all know was impeached and resigned from office in disgrace.

Here's the problem for old Donald. The Constitution is not on his side as it includes a provision intended to prevent exactly what he is engaging in. Under the Constitution’s "Emoluments Clause"...

no person holding any office of profit or trust under” the United States “shall, without the consent of the Congress, accept of any present, emolument, office, or title, of any kind whatever, from any king, prince, or foreign state.

Thus, for example, Trump cannot communicate to foreign diplomats that they can garner favor with him by patronizing his businesses, or seek special regulatory exemptions for his business ventures from foreign leaders.

Since Trump is technically not President yet his recent sleazy business activities are not yet bound by these rules so he'll slither on this set of offensive actions.

But don't for a second think Trump doesn't know exactly how large a gold mine he is sitting on right now. During the aforementioned Haberman NYT interview he exclaimed that his D.C. hotel (the one where his company encourages foreign diplomats to stay) is...

probably a more valuable asset than it was before,” because his brand is “hotter.

This imbecile should be impeached before his ass hits the chair in the Oval Office... but I'm not holding out any hope that America will sober up from the mickey this slime-ball slipped in our drink on election night.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Over 15,000 Lawyers Sign Letter Opposing Steve Bannon’s Appointment In Trump Cabinet

Thousands of attorneys have signed a letter opposing Donald Trump's appointment of Steve Bannon as his chief strategist and senior counselor when he arrives at the White House.

The problem for the lawyers who signed the letter is Bannon's long history of making bigoted and racist comments, his documented anti-Semitism and the fact that he is a domestic abuser. There is also the problem that, even to his own admission, the Breitbart news site he ran has and still does traffic in white nationalism, homophobic and sexist content. Bannon has even gone as far as to say in recent interviews that his Breitbart site was ‘the platform for the alt-right

The more than 15,000 lawyers who signed the letter co-authored by Nancy Leong, associate professor at University of Denver law school, called on members of Congress to “take all possible measures” to make Trump “rescind his appointment of Mr. Bannon”...

"As attorneys, we swore an oath to uphold the Constitution. We committed to protect the institutions upon which our democracy depends. We committed to provide zealous representation for all our clients, regardless of their race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, or any other characteristic. 
Mr. Bannon has demonstrated his opposition to the stable, democratic form of government that our profession embraces and strives to maintain. His words could not be more clear: “Lenin wanted to destroy the state, and that’s my goal, too . . . I want to bring everything crashing down, and destroy all of today’s establishment.” 

Leong wrote in an email to the media that what drove her to pen the letter was Bannon's contempt for longstanding governmental institutions which she and her peers believe has no place in such a crucial leadership position. The letter does not protest Bannon’s right to voice his views but it does vehemently disapprove of a person holding views such as Bannon's working at the highest levels of America’s democracy.

It is not relevant whether Bannon himself is a white supremacist, an anti-Semite, etc. He has shown himself willing to profit personally from a website that encourage those ideologies. That’s more than enough to demonstrate that he shouldn’t hold a key position in the White House.”  

Leong pointed out that many of the signatories to the letter were self-identied conservatives and libertarians and that the opposition of Bannon's appointment was not a partisan issue.”

Leong said she and letter organizers manually reviewed the signatories to make sure to only accept those who included their state bar affiliations. She said she planned to send the letter to members of Congress and the president-elect’s transition team on Tuesday. The organizers will continue to collect signatures and send additional signatures as an addendum.

Read the full letter HERE.

Trump Voters Believe Whites Face More Discrimination Than Any Other Group (CHART)

Most people in this country believe that black, Latino and Muslim Americans face “a lot of discrimination,” but if you were one of the voters who cast your ballot for Donald Trump you know better according to a new HuffPost/YouGov survey.

Overall, 64 percent of Americans believe that Muslim Americans face a lot of discrimination, 50 percent say that black Americans face a lot of discrimination, while 44 percent say Latino Americansface a lot of discrimination, 25 percent think Jewish Americans and 24 percent think white Americans.

On the flip side of reality Trump voters are more likely to believe that the whites face the most discrimination out of all the groups. 45 percent of them think white people in the America face a lot of discrimination, with 40 percent saying the same about Muslims, 22 percent about black Americans and just 19 percent say the same of Jews and Latinos.

Here is the chart...

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Clinton supporters held a distinctly different view from Trump voters in that they were more likely to see Latino, black and Muslim Americans as being discriminated against, with only 10 percent believing that white people in America face a lot of discrimination.

The statistics are frightening because it bears out the belief that Trump voters live in a fact free hate bubble.

Idiot Kris Kobach Gives Away Trump's Secret Deportation Plans At Doorway Photo-Op!

Yesterday Kris Kobach, the virulently anti-immigrant secretary of state of Kansas, visited Donald Trump at his golf course in Bedminster, New Jersey.

The meeting was just supposed to be another in a seemingly endless conga line of people hoping to weasel a cabinet position with the newly minted president-elect.

But as the two struck a pose for photogs outside Trump’s classy and elegant door Kobach, unbeknownst to either him or Trump was revealing parts of the new deportation plans the Trump team had been kicking around.

Here is a close up of the papers Kobach has in his hands...

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Once the media figured out what the dim-wit Kobach has done they enlarged the photo and were able to make out the first three bullet points...

#1) Reintroduce NSEERS

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First on the agenda would be to “reintroduce the NSEERS screening and tracking system" (National Security Entry-Exit Registration System) that was in place from 2002-2005. NSEERS was a system put in place by the Bush administration that made visitors and some United States residents who came from certain countries register with the federal government. Those countries, with the exception of North Korea, were majority Muslim. NSEERS, which per the ACLU was “ineffective and discriminatory,” was phased out by the Obama administration. But what the hell let's bring it back for nostalgia's sake!

#2) Extreeeeeme Vetting

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Second is the addition of "extreme vetting for high-risk aliens,” which would mean asking questions “regarding support for Sharia law, jihad, equality of men and women, the United States Constitution.” Surely, the terrorists will never make it past that extreme check point.

#3) No More Refugees

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Next on the list is a plan to "Reduce intake of Syrian refugees to zero” . Seriously, they're just a bunch of women and children trying to escape the horror of terrorist groups who have made their homelands a living hell. So forget that.

Some other stuff that can kinda be made out.

There appears to be a call for wall construction along 1,989 miles of the Mexican-American border.

And way at the bottom underneath his sleeve, the term “voter rolls” is bolded and underlined, which would mean that obsession with non-existent voter fraud would be making its way into the White House.

All I can say is thank heavens it wasn't Trump's secret plan to get rid of ISIS. We don't want to tip them off about what, when, where and how Trump plans to get rid of them so shhhhhhush! and invest in a briefcase for fuck's sake!

Monday, November 21, 2016

'HEIL TRUMP!': Neo-Nazis And White Nationalists Rally In Washington To Salute Trump (VIDEO)

Over the weekend hundreds of attendees gathered at the Ronald Reagan building for the annual conference of the National Policy Institute, which describes itself as “an independent organization dedicated to the heritage, identity, and future of people of European descent in the United States, and around the world.

The group was also there to celebrate the rise of Donald Trump as their president and figurehead and his appointment of Steve Bannon as his "Chief Strategist".

Richard Spencer, a prominent white nationalist who claims to have coined the term alt-right, was the final speaker of the night who began with a salute to the hundreds of attendees that gathered for the conference...

Hail Trump, hail our people, hail victory!

After Spencer's victory cry the room erupted in applause and Nazi salutes.

The Atlantic, who was there filming a documentary on the alt-right, reported that Spencer vision for America includes “a new society, an ethno-state that would be a gathering point for all Europeans,” and supports something he refers to as “peaceful ethnic cleansing.

Here are a few other choice passages from Spencer's speech...

America was, until this last generation, a white country designed for ourselves and our posterity. It is our creation, it is our inheritance, and it belongs to us.

"To be white is to be a striver, a crusader, an explore, and a conquerer. We produce, we go upward, and we recognize the central lie of American race relations."

"We don’t exploit other groups. We don’t gain anything from their presence. They need us, and not the other way around."

Here is A video published by The Atlantic shows clips of Spencer's speech...

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In total, the event included 11 hours of hate speech.

The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum put out a release stating it's concern with the conference's rhetoric. Here is the full statement...

As of tonight Trump, who has made time to castigated the cast of Broadway's hit musical "Hamilton" no less than three times (four if you count the one he deleted), has yet to denounced the neo-Nazi, Alt-right hate group that gathered to celebrate and declare him as their de facto leader.

Trump Pick's Islamophobic Nut-Job Lt. General Michael Flynn For National Security Advisor (PHOTOS & VIDEOS)

Donald Trump’s has tapped Army Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, a man who was fired as head of the Defense Intelligence Agency in 2014 for his inability to work with others, as his national security adviser. This pick once again goes against Trump's election night promise of being "president for all Americans" and binding "the wounds of division".

One look at Flynn's statements and actions since he hopped on the Trump train makes it abundantly clear that he is ideologically and temperamentally unfit for this position.

Flynn has engaged in Islamophobia, conspiracy theories and has carried on uncomfortably close business ties with both Russia and Turkey.

Here are some examples of Flynn engaging in less than desirable behavior for a man who is about to have the ear of an already irrational president when it comes to matters of national security.


Flynn, who has had a significant obvious influence on the president-elect’s Trump's foreign policy views, has stoked Islamophobia over and over again through speeches and his actions on social media. and hasn’t made any attempt to hide his disdain for the religion.

In July Flynn wrote an op-ed for the Rupert Murdoch owned New York Post in which he called the the Muslim world an “epic failure” compared to “the superiority of the West.

In August, the Dallas Morning News reported that Flynn had delivered a speech to a Dallas gathering of the anti-Muslim group ACT for America, in which he had called Islam a “political ideology” that “hides behind being a religion.” He also described it as a “malignant cancer” because terrorist groups instructed followers to “get into the bloodstream of the opposition”.

Here is that speech...

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In the same speech he went on to make the insane claim that every Democrat in Florida’s senate had “voted yes to allow Sharia law to be used in the state of Florida’s judicial system.”...

Here is that speech...

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The claim was of course a lie.

In one tweet Flynn dared Arab & Persian world 'leaders' to declare that the Islamic ideology was "sick and must B healed,"

Flynn tweeted that "Fear of Muslims is RATIONAL" and then asked his twitter followers to "please forward this to others: the truth fears no questions,"...

Conspiracy Theories

In late October, Flynn retweeted a false claim that United Nations Agenda 21, a sustainable development program, would create a one world church where Christianity was prohibited and that choosing nationalism was the only way to stop Clinton.

Before the election, Flynn tweeted a false story claiming the NYPD had found evidence on Anthony Weiner's laptop Hillary Clinton was involved in "Money Laundering, Sex Crimes w Children, ect...MUST READ!"

In July, Flynn linked to a tweet that falsely claimed Clinton was "wearing hijab in solidarity with islamic terrorists"...

In another instance, he linked to an article questioning if an Iranian scientist was executed recently because he was exposed on Clinton's private email server. This was a story that was already public knowledge since The New York Times had reported his status as a CIA informant previously...

Business Ties With Russia

Flynn seated next to Vladimir Putin at RT anniversary event

In 2015 Flynn was paid through his speaking agency for the appearance at the state run RT (Russian Television) event. At the dinner for RT's anniversary, Flynn was seated at the same table as Putin.

During that 2015 trip to Russia Flynn claimed he didn't know whether the 2013 sarin gas attack in Syria was conducted by the Syrian Army or by other forces in an attempt to draw the United States into the conflict...

Here is that video...

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Business Ties With Turkey

Erdoğan seated with Putin

And lest we forget Flynn runs a consulting firm which has come under scrutiny for its ties to the government of Turkish strongman Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and a number of Middle Eastern governments. Flynn was running the company that was lobbying on behalf of foreign clients even as he was receiving classified intelligence briefings during the campaign. What is most worrisome about this relationship is that Flynn, who as America's top military intelligence officer, was already privy to volumes of classified material while he was serving as the director of the Defense Intelligence Agency.

Then there is the 180 Flynn pulled when a faction of the Turkish military attempted to overthrow President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in July. At first Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn celebrated the coup effort as something “worth clapping for.” But after Flynn's intelligence firm inked an agreement with a Dutch consulting group headed by a businessman who has ties to the Turkish government his tune drastically changed...

We need to see the world from Turkey’s perspective. We must begin with understanding that Turkey is vital to U.S. interests. Turkey is really our strongest ally against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), as well as a source of stability in the region.

Not Trustworthy!

A man with anti-Islam values, a penchant for conspiracy theories and vacillating allegiances is not someone we want advising Donald Trump, a man who is virtually knowledge free when it comes to international matters, on national security.