Trump abandons climate control accord – few surprised

Donald Trump withdraw the United States from the Paris climate accord, confirming a move certain to anger allies that spent years negotiating the landmark agreement to reduce carbon emissions. But there may be “caveats in the language” that Trump uses to announce the withdrawal, leaving open the possibility that the decision isn’t still final. Typical of him. You are either out or in.

Prior to his decision this week, he said “I will be announcing my decision on the Paris Accord over the next few days.” Why wait a few days? US would join his Russian buddy, Vladimir Poutine, as the only industrialized economies in rejecting action to combat climate change. Trump has previously called global warming a “hoax”.

From Trump’s comments during his speech to leave the accord:

  • When Trump said that America would lose jobs, 374,000 related solar jobs are in the US now compared to 164,000 coal jobs [and shrinking].
  • When Trump said it would cost the government too much, the US gave $3 billion to green climate fund or 1/100 of 0.001% of budget in 2017.
  • When Trump whined that China can increase emissions for 13 years, coal consumption in China is declining and new coal plants on hold.
  • When Trump complained that a decrease of 2/10 of 1 degree C by 2100 is nothing, climate experts says even that small change can affect the world.

Many in corporate America have come down against the Trump administration including oil giants ExxonMobil and BP. Tesla CEO Elon Musk and Walt Disney CEO Bob Iger even quit a presidential advisory committee in protest. In addition, you had the heads of Microsoft, Apple, Google and Facebook all against the decision. Very few CEOs were for the decision.

Trump even went against most advisors and even his family – especially Ivanka Trump – when he wanted out of the deal.

Jared Kushner, a trusted aide to President Donald Trump and husband to Ivanka Trump, chatted with Russia’s ambassador to the US Sergey Kislyak at Trump Tower in December about the proposed channel which was meant to discuss military operations in Syria and other matters.

Russian government officials discussed having potentially “derogatory” information about then-presidential candidate Donald Trump and some of his top aides in conversations intercepted by US intelligence during the 2016 election, according to two former intelligence officials and a congressional source. One source described the information as financial in nature and said the discussion centered on whether the Russians had leverage over Trump’s inner circle.

Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said there has never been a case of election interference more aggressive than that involving Russia and the 2016 presidential election. When asked if he was 100% sure, Clapper responded with “Absolutely”.

Congressional investigators are examining whether Attorney General Jeff Sessions had an additional private meeting with Russia’s ambassador during the presidential campaign, according to Republican and Democratic Hill sources and intelligence officials briefed on the investigation. Sessions has previously failed to disclose meetings with Russian officials. During his confirmation hearing on January 10, Sessions testified that he “did not have any communications with the Russians” during the campaign.

Comedian Kathy Griffin landed in hot water after she posted a video that showed her holding a likeness of Trump’s severed head. She has apologized but she lost a job at CNN, an engagement in New Mexico and a commercial endorsement. On his Twitter account [of course], Trump says, “My children, especially my 11-year-old son, Barron, are having a hard time with this. Sick!” Knowing Trump’s “history” of comments and exaggerations, I’m wondering if Barron ever saw the video – or who in their right mind would allow him to see the video.

Russian President Vladimir Putin seemed to suggest that Russian “patriotic hackers” may have meddled in the US election, but insisted that none of their potential activities were state-backed. It’s the first time the Russian leader has conceded that any election-related hacking attacks may have emanated from his country.

The Trump administration Thursday night asked the Supreme Court to allow the President’s travel ban that blocks entry from six Muslim-majority countries to go into effect. This is the administration’s third try in getting the ban to be enforced.

Trump has been handing out his cellphone number to world leaders and urging them to call him directly, an unusual invitation that breaks diplomatic protocol and is raising concerns about the security and secrecy of the U.S. commander in chief’s communications. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has taken advantage of the offer so far.

Another election promise by Trump went out the window. His promise to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem has been put on hold by signing a waiver. Signing the waiver this week forestalls any move for another six months. Every US president has signed such a waiver twice a year after a law was passed in 1995 mandating the relocation of the embassy to Jerusalem.

“We made extraordinary gains” said Trump after his trip concluded. Funny. Except for those deals at the beginning of his trip in Saudi Arabia, there wasn’t anything really announced.

In the weeks before Trump visited Saudi Arabia on his first foreign trip, the Saudi government hired three US lobbying firms to do its bidding in Washington, including an obscure group made up of former Trump advisers that will receive $5.4 million for one year’s work, federal records show. The Saudis have now added six U.S. lobbying firms since Trump’s election. [Don’t be too surprised if Congress kills a law that lets relatives of the 9/11 victims sue the Saudi government.]

Michael Dubke, Trump’s communications director, comes as aides say Trump has grown increasingly frustrated by allegations of Russian meddling in the 2016 election and revelations of possible ties between his campaign and Moscow. Dubke joined the White House team in February after campaign aide Jason Miller — Trump’s original choice for communications director — withdrew from the White House team. Kellyanne The Witch Conway said that Dubke resigned before Trump left for his international trip earlier this month. [The Witch has been quite quiet of late.]

Trump tweeted “Russian officials must be laughing at the U.S. & how a lame excuse for why the Dems lost the election has taken over the Fake News.” More like they are laughing at him because his team could easily be manipulated.

Seems Trump continue to make no friends with US allies claiming “we have a MASSIVE trade deficit with Germany, plus they pay FAR LESS than they should on NATO & military”. Germany is third highest at $65 billion, barely ahead of Mexico and behind Japan [$69 billion] and way behind China [$347 billion]. China accounts for about 70% of the US trade deficit.

There goes another 300 jobs – this time at a Michigan plant owned by GM. Workers such as these though more jobs would be created under Trump. So they voted for him. Instead they are losing their jobs. Since last November, GM has eliminated a total of about 5,000 jobs.

The arrest and disappearance of three labour activists investigating a Chinese company that produces Ivanka Trump-branded shoes in China prompted a call for her brand to cease working with the supplier. The men were working with a U.S. non-profit to publish a report next month alleging low pay, excessive overtime and possible misuse of student labour. The Chinese company claims less than 0.1% of shoes made at the company is for the Ivanka Trump-brand merchandise.

While most sent out tweets like Ivanka Trump said [“Today we honor the men & women in our armed forces who have lost their lives to protect our freedom.”] But someone in charge of her Twitter brand account tweeted “Make champagne popsicles this #MemorialDay” followed by a link to her brand web site. Not surprising, some were not amused.

The Trump International Hotel in Washington hosted a conference for a business group that aims to improve relations between the US and Turkey. But of course it raises ethics concerns.

In 2008, Donald Trump Jr. said at a forum on real estate markets that Trump’s businesses “see a lot of money pouring in from Russia.” Earlier this year, journalist James Dodson claimed that in 2014, Eric Trump told him that that the golf business did not need American investment because “we have all the funding we need out of Russia.” Eric Trump has vigorously denied he made the remark.

Seen and heard on a recent Law and Order: Special Victims Unit episode: “Supporting that crazy thug down in DC.” Who can that be?

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About ebraiter
computer guy

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