We need to flip the script so expert economists’ first instinct isn’t to attack workers, where the pain will be felt the most, but rather to legislate limitations on corporations
Report: Cabinet Members Are Discussing Invoking 25th Amendment
This morning Donald Trump spoke to a large group of his supporters and asked them to fight for him. And fight they did. A legion of Trump fans stormed the US Capitol, overwhelmed the police and accessed the building.
Trump could have helped to end the conflict. But according to multiple sources, the president ignored pleas for him to speak directly to his supporters and ask for the insurrection to stop.
The president finally posted a video to Twitter and
Opinion: American Lives Depend on Telling True Story of Trump’s Life-Destroying Economy
What is the story of the U.S. economy?
Not unlike the proverbial elephant subject to scrutiny by a band of blind men, the nation’s economy is subject to multiple narrative descriptions depending on which component of the beast, whether our economy or an elephant, the blind man massages.
Some media pundits have argued that the historically low unemployment rates combined with record stock market performances attest to a strong economy that would propel Trump to victory in 2020 if only he were disciplined enough to stay on point about the economy, stupid.
Others claim focusing on these numbers is akin to grasping the trunk and the tail of the elephant, missing the bigger and much more accurate picture of an economy that has not just failed but actively assaulted the vast majority of Americans. MSNBC’s Stephanie Ruhle, for example, has been unrelenting in fleshing out this more comprehensive narrative, insisting, among other points, that the stock market and the overall economy are not the same thing.
It may very well be the more compelling storyteller, or the storyteller who gets access to the most air time, who tilts the 2020 election.
Robert Shiller’s recent splashy book Narrative Economics underscores this point in a general way, arguing that the popular and viral narratives purveyed about the economy don’t so much describe the economy but drive the economic events themselves, regardless of the truth value of the story itself.
As the Yale University professor and Nobel-prize winning economist told CNBC, “It may not be so logical. It may be more, as I said, of animal spirits. This is an emotion that you feel at a certain time that you sense you see in other people. So when you see other people feeling confident about the market, you feel more confident yourself.”
He attributes recent market strength, for example, to Trump’s storytelling prowess: “He’s a motivational speaker. We’ve never had a motivational speaker president before. He knows how to create animal spirits.”
What cannot be emphasized enough, however, is the importance of a crafting an economic narrative that aligns as closely as possible with our economic reality, generating the most effective understanding of the dynamics and performance of the economy–for good decision-making by voters and good policy-making by legislators.
How we tell this story is vital to lives of the American majority, which is why Shiller’s applause for Trump’s motivational stirring of animal spirits is absolutely misplaced and damaging to American lives.
As we get a hold of the entire elephant of the Trump economy, we find an economy on a sugar high, thriving on taxpayer debt, enriching even further the already wealthy, and heading for a crash.
As we limn this elephant, let’s start with the national debt and deficit. Trump inherited a strong economy, and it is typically during healthy economic times that the government pays down the national debt. But both the deficit and debt have grown under Trump’s administration, largely because of his tax cuts that served largely the wealthy.
Reports indicated that in October the federal government’s budget deficit ballooned 34% from a year earlier to $134.5 billion, projecting that the annual deficit will top $1 trillion for the first time in eight years.
The national debt, meanwhile, has surged beyond $22 trillion.
Hmmm. If the economy is booming, shouldn’t the federal government’s coffers be filling up and not depleting?
We can certainly understand how in a time of recession the government would need to provide economic stimulus and thus run a deficit, but when the economy is supposedly experiencing record performance?
When Trump slashed corporate tax rates from 35 to 21 percent, we were told, as usual, that these tax cuts would pay for themselves, create an economy that enriches us all.
Basically, Trump is using the credit of the American worker to enrich corporate America and the wealthiest of Americans. It’s as if, for most Americans, someone maxed out their credit cards and yet they got none of the benefit of the goods and services purchased.
These tax cuts benefited the wealthy and did not trickle down, despite Trump’s promises that companies would invest in workers and not cut jobs. Companies like AT&T, Wells Fargo, and General Motors lobbied for them, promising to re-invest their tax savings in their workers and companies to the benefit off the nation as a whole. And yet all of these companies have engaged in massive layoffs or plant closings. AT&T has eliminated over 23,000 jobs since the tax cuts went into effect, despite receiving a $21 billion windfall from the tax cuts with the prospect of cashing in an additional $3 billion annually in tax savings. In November 2018, GM announced it would be closing five plants, eliminating 14,000 jobs in communities across Ohio, Maryland, Michigan, and Ontario, Canada, while buying back $10 billion in stock and earning a net profit of $8 billion on which the company paid no federal tax. Other automakers have also slashed thousands of jobs, saving billions of dollars.Wells Fargo did raise the minimum wage of its employees, though the tax savings for the company were 47 times larger than the cost of that pay raise to the company; and the company announced its plans in September 2018 to eliminate 26,000 jobs, at the same time that it has raised health insurance costs for its employees.
homelessness in the U.S.
CBS News Says New Mueller Indictments Could Be Coming Today
CBS News is reporting this morning that special counsel Robert Mueller is expected to soon issue new indictments in the ongoing probe of the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia. They said that the new indictments may be issued as early as today.
The news agency said that a significant number of new indictments may be sent out in the ongoing investigation which has already resulted in numerous guilty pleas by top officials who worked to elect President Donald Trump. Mueller’s team has also previously issued 30 criminal indictments in the case.
CBS said that is has sources with inside knowledge of the investigation. They reportedly told Paula Reid, a CBS anchor, that they are expecting that the new indictments will come down this week sometime, and possibly right away.
“I’ve spoken with many sources with knowledge of the Special Counsel investigation, and we do expect new indictments to be coming as soon as today,” Reid said.
@PaulaReidCBS reports: “I’ve spoken with many sources with knowledge of the Special Counsel investigation, and we do expect new indictments to be coming as soon as today.”
.@PaulaReidCBS reports: “I’ve spoken with many sources with knowledge of the Special Counsel investigation, and we do expect new indictments to be coming as soon as today.” pic.twitter.com/v7SJHR1r2g
Trump Won’t Demand That Putin Hand Over Indicted Russians
Trump said that he might ask Putin to turn over the Russians that Mueller has indicted but that this happened under Obama and it was the DNC's own fault that they got hacked.
Trump Will Have to Look for Another Rich White Guy as Navy Secretary Pick Withdraws
The decision has set twitter a-crowing over Trump's failure and sent him scurrying to find another suitable rich white guy to run the government
Donald Trump Tells 60 Minutes He Will Keep Parts of Obamacare
Trump says he will keep the pre-existing conditions, calling it 'one of the strongest assets,' as well as children living with their parents
Donald Trump Claims Hillary is Copying His ‘Airplane Rallies’ – She’s Not
Trump: "Do people notice Hillary is copying my airplane rallies?" CBS News: "Hillary Clinton has not done an airplane rally."
CBS News Humiliates Itself By Reporting On Trump’s Birtherism And Not Calling It A Lie
CBS News committed an act of journalistic malpractice by reporting on Trump's birtherism without stating that the birther conspiracy is a lie.
Trump Kicks Media Out of Black Church While Surrogate Lashes Out at Media for Leaving
Laura Ingraham complained it was "convenient" that CNN feed dropped during Trump visit to black church. Sopan Deb said, "Totally inaccurate"
Hillary Clinton Leads Donald Trump in Latest New York Times/CBS Poll
The former Secretary of State leads the billionaire buffoon by six points, even as she remains in an increasingly heated primary campaign against Bernie Sanders.
ABC, CBS, And NBC News Made An Intentional Decision To Ignore Bernie Sanders
An analysis of network television news coverage reveals what supporters of Sen. Bernie Sanders have long suspected, the three broadcast television networks are intentionally ignoring the Sanders campaign.
Peggy Noonan Says Linking Climate Change and Terrorism Makes Bernie Sanders Look “Daffy”
Despite all the evidence he is 100% correct about the connection between climate change and terrorism, Noonan thinks Sanders sounds "daffy"
CBS News Only Mainstream Media Outlet Sunday to Ignore Benghazi Whistleblower Podliska
Everyone ought to be talking about Major Bradley Podliska, and everyone did Sunday, except for CBS News, which preferred Donald Trump lies
Fox & Friends: Priest Says Don’t Trust President Who Doesn’t Fear Eternal Damnation
Father Jonathan Morris took to Fox & Friends to push fear of eternal damnation while ignoring the Constitution's No Religious Test Clause
Trapped Rat Bill O’Reilly Completely Cracks Up As He Threatens New York Times Reporter
In an interview with the New York Times Monday evening, Fox News host Bill O'Reilly personally threatened a reporter over the paper's coverage of the controversy surrounding O'Reilly's claims that he was in a war zone when he covered protests in Buenos Aires in 1982.
Republican Senator John McCain Erupts And Calls Anti-War Protesters “Low-Life Scum”
During a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing Thursday, committee chairman Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) flipped out on anti-war protesters from Code Pink and referred to them as "low-life scum."
Media Matters Names George F. Will Misinformer of the Year
Will's most egregious sin may have been his "attacking and dismissing rape victims" but climate denialism and ethical lapses also dogged him
Taxpayers Held Prisoner by the Private Prison Industry
As you're doubtless aware, assorted misdeeds and lawbreaking will land you in jail and prison for varying quantities of essentially wasted time. For those who profit off the "bad" guys and gals, crime is a Godsend; a never-ending profit center much like the funeral business.
Media Finally Pivots Away from Repetitive Deficit Scare Tactics and Notices Surging Populism
The movement away from "serious" economic butchering that only serves to enrich the wealthy and kick the troubled when they're down, no longer holds the same appeal.
The Mainstream Media Suffers from Conservative-Induced Stockholm Syndrome
I wonder if, due to dangerously high levels of delusion, it is time to put the MSM, if not the Fourth Estate as a whole away as a threat to society.
Nancy Pelosi Destroys Republican Talking Points on the Debt Ceiling
Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) destroyed Republican talking points regarding the debt ceiling on Face the Nation, and then upped the ante for more revenue.
Obama Uses Libya Debacle to Put Romney Six Feet Under
Without using a single personal attack, Obama used Romney's disastrous handling of his remarks on the Libya attack to bury the Republican nominee.
Rahm Emanuel: GOP Leaders Are Scared of the Tea Party
In an interview that will air on CBS' 60 Minutes on Sunday night, White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel waded into the civil war that is going on within the Republican Party. Emanuel refused to identify the tea partiers by name, but he described the state of the GOP as being, "at the behest of a fringe group that's taken control of their own party and their own leaders are scared of it."