The US was that close to another war

A military operation to strike Iran over the downing of a US drone was set to begin when the Donald Trump called it off. Iran’s Revolutionary Guards said it shot a US drone over its airspace while the US said it was shot over international waters. At first Trump had tweeted that “Iran made a very big mistake!” as he and his national security officials huddled. For now, all US and several other airlines have been warned not to fly in the Strait of Hormuz area.

Trump said “I have a feeling it was a mistake” when Iran shot down the US drone, saying he finds it “hard to believe it was intentional” and that it would have made a “big, big difference” if there was someone inside the drone. Is he defending Iran? Her added “Nobody died, but an expensive resource of ours, we don’t have many of, got blown up. We obviously care about that.” So he flip flopped quite fast.

“We were cocked & loaded to retaliate last night on 3 different sights when I asked, how many will die,” claimed Trump in a tweet. “150 people, sir, was the answer from a General. 10 minutes before the strike I stopped it, not proportionate to shooting down an unmanned drone.”

“President Obama made a desperate and terrible deal with Iran – Gave them 150 Billion Dollars plus 1.8 Billion Dollars in CASH! Iran was in big trouble and he bailed them out.” Wonder which right wing crackpot gave him those numbers. 2.5 years into his mandate and he is still whining about his predecessors and what has he claimed to done and actually did?

The US is escalating cyber-attacks on Russia’s electric power grid and has placed potentially crippling malware inside the Russian system, The New York Times reported. It would be used in the event of evidence that Russian interferes in the 2020 election.

But Trump may had not been briefed in any detail about the US computer code being implanted inside the Russian grid. Trump tweeted “This is a virtual act of Treason by a once great paper so desperate for a story, any story, even if bad for our Country…. These [“fake media”] are true cowards and without doubt, THE ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE!”

Virtual act of treason? Hmmm. We already knows that he uses the “t” word now for just about anything that offends him. Media, Democrats, WASPS, dogs, exercise, … Maybe instead of looking at the “fake media”, if the story is actually true, they should find out who in the cyber ops leaked the information.

Trump issued new authorities last summer to the United States Cyber Command, which is part of the Pentagon and runs the US military’s defensive and offensive online operations. The classified document gives the commander of Cyber Command, Gen. Paul Nakasone, the power to conduct offensive online operations without needing presidential approval. That lack of approval is more concerning – however at least any command would be thought about thoroughly – unlike anything Trump would decide.

Secretary of State Mike “Pompous” Pompeo has denied the story but said if Cyber Command did do it, he says it should have been done by the previous administration. Not George W. Bush’s administration?

With Trump expected to meet with Chinese Prime Minister Xi soon, “Pompous” Pompeo claims Trump has always been a defender of human rights and will ask Xi about the current issues in Hong Kong. You don’t see Trump and the phase “human rights” in the same sentence as there has been at most a couple of times where Trump has complained about human rights and meant it. Xi himself may just say it is an internal matter and mind your own business [or point to Trump’s human rights record on immigrants].

From Trump’s first official campaign rally in Florida [is there any difference between this and any other rally?]:

  • “We are, by the way, the number-one producer of energy in the world because of what we’ve done right now.” – The Energy Information Administration, said in 2016: “US petroleum and natural gas production first surpassed Russia in 2012, and the United States has been the world’s top producer of natural gas since 2011. Only thing surpassed under Trump was crude oil production in 2018.
  • “And in September, just before the election, the FBI told President Obama about possible Russian interference, …. He did nothing.” – Except Obama authorized an extraordinary public statement in October 2016 blaming the hacking on “Russia’s senior-most officials,” and top administration officials issued multiple warnings to top Russian officials. Obama warned Russian President Vladimir Poutine directly, at a G20 meeting in September 2016. After the election, in December 2016, Obama imposed sanctions on Russia.
  • “And not only did we fill it up, but we had 120,000 requests.” – Except if the arena was filled up and so many requests, why didn’t they move it to a stadium or put up screens outside the arena.
  • “…no president has had to deal with before, because we did, in the middle of the great and illegal witch hunt, things that nobody have been able to accomplish, not even close.” – Except immediate proof of a crime is not required to make a probe legal, and the probe eventually resulted in the convictions of multiple Trump associates.
  • “It’s beautiful. I changed the design. It’s stronger, bigger, better and cheaper.” – To describe a wall that way and considering that earlier this year he said the wall was being built but wasn’t. And then there is no comparison on the second sentence since nothing was ever built or any plans were made public.
  • “This election is a verdict on whether we want to live in a country where the people who lose an election refuse to concede and spend the next two years trying to shred our Constitution and rip your country apart.” – Even over 2 years later, still whining about the election. Still don’t see anyone from the Democrats contesting the election. The same goes for the missing emails.
  • “And they spent $40 million on this witch hunt, $40 million. That’s right. They spent $40 million, probably a hell of a lot more than that.” – Except current estimates is a bit above $25 million but the US government is expected to receive $11 million as a result of asset forfeitures from Paul Manafort.
  • “And you know we couldn’t get the wall approved by the Democrats, even though they voted for it four years ago and six years ago…” – Except some Democrats voted to authorize 700 miles of border fencing. But the fencing was different than the Trump campaign proposal the Democrats opposed 10 years later, which was for a giant concrete wall.
  • “….we are creating a future of American energy independence, and yet our air and water are the cleanest they’ve ever been by far.” – According to whom?
  • “A vote for any Democrat in 2020 is a vote for the rise of radical socialism, and the destruction of the American dream.” – No comments.

Trump also whined about the usual stuff: Clinton, hoax, no collusion, vindicated in the Mueller Report, draining the swamp, overturn the election, etc.

Several pollsters have paid with their jobs after revealing lagging early swing state data that raises doubts over Trump’s ability to make political lightning strike again in 2020. Leaks showed that he is losing in several swing states. Then he tweeted “Only Fake Polls show us behind the Motley Crew. We are looking really good, but it is far too early to be focused on that.”

So he is behind in several states already and rumored to be angry for days about the internal polls leaked to the media last week that showed him losing to Democrats, including Joe Biden, in states like Michigan and Wisconsin. But then he blames the “fake media”. What would his comment be if he was winning? Hmmmm.

Trump said that acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan has “decided not to go forward with his confirmation process.” His resignation comes amid reports detailing his contentious divorce, which dragged out over six years. “….he can devote more time to his family.” Shanahan released a statement saying he withdrew from consideration after details surfaced related to “a painful and deeply personal family situation from long ago.” That sort of contradicts Trump. No shocker there.

Trump then named Secretary of the Army, Mark Esper, to be the new Acting Secretary of Defense. Unlike Shanahan who wasn’t from the military, Esper has been in the military and is respected.

A bipartisan group of lawmakers voted to halt the Trump administration’s push to circumvent Congress and expedite $8.1 billion in arms sales to Gulf countries by declaring an emergency. Trump is expected to veto the package of resolutions of disapproval and the votes were far short of the two-thirds of the chamber needed to overrule Trump.

Magazine advice columnist E. Jean Carroll alleged Trump had sexually assaulted her at a New York luxury department store in the late 1990s. Carroll details the allegations in her forthcoming book.

Carroll claims that she encountered Trump in the fall of 1995 or spring 1996 at the Bergdorf Goodman department store, where she says he attacked her in one of the dressing rooms. According to Carroll’s account, Trump sought her advice in buying a gift, and the two had met previously.

“Shame on those who make up false stories of assault to try to get publicity for themselves, or sell a book, or carry out a political agenda — like Julie Swetnick who falsely accused Justice Brett Kavanaugh,” Trump said as a reply to the allegation. He said he has never met Carrell. He then added “Worse still for a dying publication to try to prop itself up by peddling fake news” taking aim at the New York Magazine which published the excerpts.

When a Time magazine journalist tried to take a picture of a letter received by Trump from Kim Jong Un that was off the record, saying to the journalist “Well, you can go to prison instead, because, if you use, if you use the photograph you took of the letter that I gave you….” why bother showing the letter even off the record.

Then he rants “Because I’m sure it will be the 28th horrible story I have in TIME Magazine because I never – I mean – ha. It’s incredible. With all I’ve done and the success I’ve had, the way that TIME Magazine writes is absolutely incredible.” An then “Some day within the next 20 years, maybe you’ll pick me as Man of the Year. O.K., big deal.” Except he was picked in 2016.

Later Trump said it was a personal letter. White House sources said it was just a birthday greeting. So why would Trump not show the letter?

In a Trump tweet, he is threatening that “millions” of undocumented immigrants would be deported next week. Now that he said it in public, I can see him tell his fan base that he did it when he didn’t. A day later, a senior immigration official with knowledge of the administration’s plans painted a different picture. “There is no operation next week to pick up millions… No clue where he got that impression.” Well, he said he’d kick out millions of criminals following his election win. That never happened.

Former White House Communications Director Hope Hicks refused to answer questions about her time working in the White House as she testified behind closed doors before the House Judiciary Committee. “The president’s lawyers are directing her not to answer any questions even as we are recounting stuff she told to the special counsel” said a Democrat and member of the panel.

As part of the ongoing trade battles with China, Canada got caught in the middle. After the US requested the extradition from Canada of a Huawei executive [which has been caught in legal issues], China arrested 2 Canadians right after the executive was arrested on [err] trumped up charges. Since then China has also rescinded deals or blocked imports. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was in Washington to work with Trump on that issue, NAFTA 2.0 and other issues. Trump said that he has promised to take up the matter of the two Canadians with Chinese President Xi Jinping next week at the G20 summit in Japan. We’ll see.

Marc Lotter, the director of strategic communications for the Trump 2020 campaign, said that a new Quinnipiac showing Trump losing to 6 Democratic presidential candidates is “meaningless.” He also said their polls are not accurate. I wonder if he would say the same thing if Trump was leading. The Democratic candidates had anywhere between a 1% and a 9% leads over Trump.

“They’re after my financial statement – the Senate, they’d like to get my financial statement. At some point I hope they get it,” Trump said in an interview. “It’s a fantastic financial statement.” He claims he is being asked for statements “they’ve never asked another President for.” Trump has refused to release his tax returns while in office, making him the only modern president to refuse to do so.

From a tweet [referencing that he has 6 years left as president] “…do you think the people would demand that I stay longer?” Again, does he know the constitution? Not the first time he joked [or not] that he wants a longer than 8 year term [maybe in prison].

Seems the new cold war has invaded cancer research. A resignation of a leading Chinese researcher at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center and the departures in recent months of three other top Chinese American scientists, stem from a Trump administration drive to counter Chinese influence at US research institutions. The aim is to stanch China’s well-documented and costly theft of US innovation and know-how.

The National Institutes of Health has contacted 61 research institutions about suspected diversion of proprietary information by grant recipients and referred 16 cases, mainly involving undisclosed ties to foreign governments, for possible legal action. FBI agents are reading private emails, stopping Chinese scientists at airports, and visiting people’s homes to ask about their loyalty.

Oh acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney is in trouble. During an interview recently Trump told him to leave the Oval office after Mulvaney coughed during one of Trump’s answers. “I don’t like that, you know, I don’t like that,” Trump said.

When French President Emmanuel Macron came to Washington in April 2018 for his first state visit, he and Trump planted a European sessile oak tree on the South Lawn of the White House. It was meant to symbolize friendship between the two countries and the 100th anniversary of when American troops fought in France during World War I. Now the tree is dead. How do you kill a tree?

The so-called Environmental Protection Agency said states can set their own carbon emissions standards for coal-fired power plants — a rule that the agency itself says could result in 1,400 more premature deaths by 2030 than the Obama-era plan it will replace.

The move fulfills part of Trump’s promise to help the coal industry. Trump thinks this will help the coal industry but less and less companies are using coal because of carbon emissions and the fact that it is dirty. US coal consumption has plunged 39% to the lowest level in 40 years, according to the US Energy Information Administration.

Oh. Happy Birthday Donnie!

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About ebraiter
computer guy

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