Again, it’s the G6 and Trump

Donald Trump was notably missing from the G7 meeting on climate control. Asked about it during one of his news conferences, Trump appeared to suggest the climate talks were yet to happen. But French President Emmanuel Macron later said Trump only missed the climate session because supposedly it clashed with other bilateral meetings with Germany and India – except both were at the climate control meeting. So who [if any] did he actually see?

Yet, Trump insisted [again] that he knows more about climate control than “most” people. Uh huh. He wants clean water and clean air. Not when you want to increase coal production and relax regulations for oil drilling, tree cutting, etc. And he basically said windmills are useless.

Macron staged a major surprise at the G7 meeting, unexpectedly inviting the Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif to the gathering. The other G7 leaders were told the night before but Trump said he didn’t know anything about the visit but after said he knew it was happening and didn’t interpret it as a sign of disrespect. But US officials said they weren’t given significant advance warning that Zarif would be in Biarritz for talks.

Trump seemed to indicate he regretted his trade duel with China in comments that rocketed around the world amid concern about its economic impact. “I have second thoughts about everything,” he said, leaving critics to hope he was trying to make himself political room to deescalate the showdown. But Trump, who hates to look like he’s being backed into a corner or is climbing down, then sent out his aides to say that on the contrary, his only regret was not being tougher on China.

Trump’s top White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow [in the Sunday news talk show circuit] argued that Trump had misheard the question from the press pool whether he was having second thoughts about China. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin also was talking on Sunday giving out the same response.

South Carolina Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham said that the American people have “just got to accept the pain that comes with standing up to China,” in terms of higher prices for consumer goods. Oh ya. They will like that. Not. Trump has insisted inaccurately that China and not US consumers are paying the price for the tariffs.

Trump has in recent days also accused the media of talking down the economy to hurt him. “You people want a recession because you think maybe that’s the way to get Trump out,” Trump told reporters in France. More like the media is speculating where the economy is going, using sound logic from economists and others instead of his guessing.

Trump tweeted “The question I was asked most today by fellow World Leaders, who think the USA is doing so well and is stronger than ever before, happens to be, ‘Mr. President, why does the American media hate your Country so much? Why are they rooting for it to fail?'” Ummm. Right Donnie. I’m sure if the other leaders were asked if they actually said this, they’d say no.

Trump tweeted “It’s a very big transaction, and we’ve agreed in principle. It’s billions and billions of dollars” on a potential free trade deal with Japan. It’s potential.

Trump also discussed the replacement NAFTA agreement called USMCA. While Mexico has ratified the deal, Canada and US hasn’t. Canada will wait until after an October general election to approve. The US is a different story. Trump claims that the House and senate will approve the deal – yet the house is controlled by the Democrats and they want some changes before agreeing. If the ratification falls apart Trump will surely blame the Democrats on this even though he opened his big mouth by saying it would be approved.

Trump is pushing for Russia to rejoin the G7 in time for the 2020 summit. But the other leaders aren’t receptive to the idea. German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Russia won’t join until the Ukraine situation is fixed. Russia’s annexation of the Crimea in the Ukraine in 2014 was the reason why they were kicked out.

At the end of the G7, Trump took some questions on his own and no shocker, he said some things which are proven false. Among them:

“The first lady has gotten to know Kim Jong Un, and I think she would agree with me he is a man with a country that has tremendous potential.” – White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham said later Melania Trump never met him but Trump has talked about him. [Will Grisham be losing her job soon?]

China had been “taking” $500 billion from the US for “many, many years” and “every single year.” – At most, it was $381 billion in 2018 when counting goods and services, $420 billion when counting goods alone and the government had tariffs on China for more than two centuries.

“The United States, which has never collected 10 cents from China, will in a fairly short period of time be over $100 billion in tariffs.” – Again he knows little about trade. Americans make the actual tariff payments, not people in China.

“We’ve had many calls. Secretary Mnuchin is here, and you’ve had many calls over the last 24 hours, but certainly over the last 48 hours.” – A spokesperson for China’s Foreign Ministry said earlier in the day that he was “not aware” of any new phone calls between the two countries.

Of the 2015 nuclear agreement with Iran, that “we gave them $150 billion.” – More like $56 billion but that was their own assets. The government gave them nothing.

The Iran nuclear agreement is “almost expiring, if you think about it.” – Actually most of the deal is permanent but some will last for another 10 to 15 years.

“But we are now the number one energy producer in the world and soon it will be by far.” – It was the number one energy producer in 2012 under President Obama, according to the US government’s Energy Information Administration. The US became the top producer of crude oil in particular during Trump’s tenure.

“But I own Turnberry and I own in Aberdeen and I own in Ireland as you know, Doonbeg.” – Ireland, where Trump’s Doonbeg golf club is located, is not part of the United Kingdom.

Russia was suspended from the G8 because of Barack Obama’s personal embarrassment about being “outsmarted” by Russian President Vladimir Putin’s annexation of Crimea. – It is the other members of the G8 who voted all in favor of kicking Russia out. It wasn’t just Obama’s decision. While Obama wasn’t happy with the annexation, Crimea isn’t part of the US.

Trump confirmed reports that he is “possibly” looking at hosting the next G7 summit in 2020 at his Trump National Doral Golf Resort in Miami. Trump discussed the pros of hosting the G7 at his Miami-Dade resort, including its close proximity to the airport and infrastructure that he said could easily accommodate the large presence of global leaders, delegations and press. Hosting at his resort could be an ethical violation as he shouldn’t be making money off anything while being president.

Trump tweeted “No bedbugs at Doral. The Radical Left Democrats, upon hearing that the perfectly located (for the next G-7) Doral National MIAMI was under consideration for the next G-7, spread that false and nasty rumor.” Oh ya? You don’t settle a lawsuit if bed bugs didn’t exist.

In a CBS poll, only 38% of those asked said they were feeling optimistic about the future of the US economy and 54% said Trump tries to make the economy sound better than it really is. While Trump still had majority approval for his handling of the economy in the poll – 53% – only 25% of those asked said they believed his handling of trade with China will actually work.

“We are tracking closely tropical storm Dorian as it heads, as usual, to Puerto Rico. FEMA and all others are ready, and will do a great job. When they do, let them know it, and give them a big Thank You – Not like last time. That includes from the incompetent Mayor of San Juan!” Trump tweeted. He really knows how to whine.

Whatever was fixed in Puerto Rico since 2017’s Hurricane Maria, could be undone with Dorian. Trump and local officials — namely San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz — have consistently sparred in the aftermath of 2017’s Hurricane Maria over funding.

Nearly 3,000 people died as a result of the storm and aftereffects, including widespread power outages. Trump has consistently denied any fault for his administration in the aftermath of the storm. Trump has instead sought praise for his handling of Hurricane Maria, calling it “an incredible, unsung success” last year. And yet, there was lack of infrastructure for months in many areas.

Trump tweeted “Congress approved 92 Billion Dollars for Puerto Rico last year, an all time record of its kind for ‘anywhere,'” But more than half of that $92 billion is based on the White House’s estimates for costs FEMA could incur in years to come. $42.7 billion of relief has been appropriated by Congress, with $20.8 billion obligated to be spent by the federal government, and $13.8 billion actually spent.

“The United States of America was not involved in the catastrophic accident during final launch preparations for the Safir SLV Launch at Semnan Launch Site One in Iran,” Trump tweeted except he also included classified imagery publicly. Trump claimed “I released a photo, which I had the absolute right to do.”

It looks like it was a photo taken of the original image. A professor at the US Naval War College, noted that the “quality of image Trump tweeted appears beyond the capabilities US has previously been willing to demonstrate to public.”

Trump took his complaints about Fox News, his biggest bastion of support on television [and propaganda department], to a new level, claiming that the network “isn’t working for us anymore.” His tweets made explicit Trump’s long-held belief that Fox belongs to him and his supporters. Trump suggests that the network is not sufficiently loyal to him.

“We have to start looking for a new News Outlet,” he tweeted, inadvertently lending credence to critic’s claims that Fox is akin to state-run TV. Trump has lodged complaints about Fox more than a dozen times this year, oftentimes when he sees Democratic candidates and analysts on the air. Recently he also commented to members of the media that “Fox is a lot different than it used to be.”

Trump continues to go after Fox by rating Fox News hosts in a radio interview according to how much they suck up to him.

Trump claimed he has the “absolute right” to “order” US [private sector] companies to stop doing business with China that would involve using his broad executive authority in a new and unprecedented way under a 1977 law called the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA). The IEEPA has never been invoked to impose tariffs.

The IEEPA, passed in the wake of Watergate and Vietnam, gives Trump “broad authority to regulate a variety of economic transactions following a declaration of national emergency” and can be used “to deal with any unusual and extraordinary threat….to the national security, foreign policy, or economy of the United States.”

Attorneys general for 19 states and the District of Columbia sued Trump’s administration on Monday to block a sweeping new rule to indefinitely detain migrant families seeking to settle in the United States. The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles, was the first in an expected flurry of litigation seeking to stop the rule from taking effect in October.

Even if the courts allow the rule to take effect, there are also practical problems: paying for thousands of additional family detention beds. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has only three family detention facilities — two in Texas and one in Pennsylvania — that have between 2,500 and 3,000 beds. More than 42,000 families, mostly from Central America, were arrested along the U.S. southern border just last month.

The new rule seeks to scrap the 1997 agreement, known as the Flores settlement, which puts a 20-day limit on how long children can be held in immigration detention. The court overseeing the settlement expanded its interpretation in 2015 to apply not just to unaccompanied children but also to children traveling with their parents.

Attorney General William Barr is planning a holiday bash at the Trump International Hotel, Washington, DC, could wind up costing more than $30,000. A Justice Department official told CNN that the party is not an official Justice Department event and will be paid out of Barr’s pocket. Still, it is raising concerns from ethics experts and comes as the Justice Department defends President Donald Trump’s businesses in court over claims that they’re benefiting unlawfully from his position.

Already with about 15 months before the next election, 12 Republicans [and 2 Democrats] have confirmed they won’t run in the House again. Ten are leaving politics completely. This happens when as a politician you can see the writing on the wall after a disastrous term by your party leader. 4 years ago the Republicans easily won 11 of 12 seats. Some [claiming] are leaving for family issues. [This is happening in Canada with many in the ruling Liberal government leaving politics after their term as they suspect not good results in the next election.]

As fires rage in Brazil, Trump tweeted “Just spoke with President @JairBolsonaro of Brazil. Our future Trade prospects are very exciting and our relationship is strong, perhaps stronger than ever before. I told him if the United States can help with the Amazon Rainforest [sic] fires, we stand ready to assist!” Seems like Trump’s priority is more into trade than the climate – not surprising.

Trump tweeted “When the “Age of Trump” is looked back on many years from now, I only hope that a big part of my legacy will be the exposing of massive dishonesty in the Fake News!”, Twitter users mocked him with comments like “4 years old is ‘The Age of Trump'” [and other ages] or compared to “Age of Obama” or “Age of Trump should be a video game” [p__sy grab is a move].

Trump’s campaign manager, Brad Parscale, owns Red State Data and Digital, has received $910,000 from Trump’s flagship political action committee, America First Action, which is barred from coordinating with the campaign.

Hitting it where it hurts: American Outdoor Brands, the maker of Smith & Wesson firearms and other outdoor products like hunting and fishing accessories announced weaker than expected earnings because of a drop in gun sales related to the US-China trade wars because much of their products are made in China.

Trump has floated multiple times the idea of thwarting hurricanes headed for the US by bombing them, including by dropping nuclear bombs on hurricanes to disrupt their course. Sources were briefed on a National Security Council memo that recorded the comments. Trump denied the report, claiming that he “never said” what was in it.

But at that NSC meeting “You could hear a gnat fart in that meeting. People were astonished. After the meeting ended, we thought, ‘What the f—? What do we do with this?'” Trump also raised the idea of using bombs to stop hurricanes during a 2017 conversation with a senior administration official. Another lie.

White House communications director Stephanie Grisham said “I don’t think they’re lies. … I think the President communicates in a way that some people, especially the media, aren’t necessarily comfortable with. A lot of times they take him so literally.” Seriously? So how do you know when he’s telling the truth or not? If he says “I’m going to nuke Iran in 5 minutes”, Iran may take him seriously.

Joining the unemployment lines: Trump’s personal assistant, Madeleine Westerhout, who’s been with him since the start of his administration, has abruptly left the White House after sharing intimate details about Trump’s family with reporters. None of what she revealed was made public. But when Trump found out, she was abruptly declared a “separated employee” and barred from the White House.

The Washington Post’s Fact Checker blog counted more than 12,000 false or misleading statements from Trump in his first 928 days in office, an average of 13 inaccurate claims a day.

Trump, the chief of conspiracy theories

Donald Trump retweeted a conspiracy theory on Saturday evening alleging without evidence that former President Bill Clinton was connected to the death of wealthy financier and accused sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein, hours after Epstein was found dead by apparent suicide in his federal prison cell. Considering that Trump has claimed he hasn’t been around Epstein for something like 15 years, he has taken great interest in it.

“Died of SUICIDE on 24/7 SUICIDE WATCH ? Yeah right! How does that happen,” wrote Terrence K. Williams, a conservative commentator and comedian, in the message retweeted by Trump. In a two-minute long selfie video recording, Williams alleged that the Clintons were responsible for Epstein’s death and falsely claims that Epstein was on suicide watch in the prison at the time of his death. He wasn’t. Somebody is missing a handful of screws.

And not surprised with the conspiracy nuts going nuts. One claims that “Twitter Removes #ClintonBodyCount with 84,000 Mentions from Trending List After Epstein Death – Replaces with Trump, Barr Hashtags”. Others claim that Epstein is still alive.

With Trump himself denying that he has been involved with Epstein for over a dozen years, it could further bit him in the butt if [for example] Epstein said under testimony the Trump was involved in his sex session with underage girls. Trump would also benefit from Epstein’s death. As the so-called president, he has the means for someone to do it on his behalf.

Since he came into office, Trump has always claimed how great the economy has been. His indicator was primarily that the stock market was rising. He isn’t a financial guru. Far from it. His tariff wars with other big economies – claiming that they have huge trade surpluses – is starting to hit the US economy. Just recently Trump postponed hitting China with more tariffs acknowledging [finally] that tariffs will raise prices on items that American buy. So he has delayed the next round until after the holiday buying season has ended.

Meanwhile, the bond market, for the first time in over a decade, flashed a warning signal that has an eerily accurate track record for predicting recessions. Right after, the major stock markets dropped over 2% each with the Dow Jones dropping 832 points following the warning. All the major economies, from Germany to the UK to India [with the slight exception of Canada] has been hit with economic issues.

Trump went after Federal Reserve chairman and Trump appointee Jay Powell on Twitter, blaming him for the problem and claiming that his tariffs are not hurting the economy. Again, [not defending him] Trump isn’t a financial guru. Analysts have said trade wars were in part behind recent troubles in financial markets as they raised costs and cast a layer of uncertainty on businesses and consumers.

With an upcoming election coming in 15 months, what Trump doesn’t need is a recession. A recession will hurt his re-election chances if his base starts to lose jobs or pay more for items that they need. He won’t be able to claim that the economy is doing so well. But knowing him, he would [who’s he fooling?].

Even with the Trump administration trying not to allow Russians from affecting the US economics and politics, the administration allowed a major Russian company, Rusal, to get a 40% stake in an aluminum mill in Kentucky, the home state of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. The owner of Rusal is a friend of President Vladimir Poutine.

All this is even though the head of the Russian company has been sanctioned by the Mueller investigation. Two lobbyists working to get the mill built were formerly employed by McConnell. The owner is also friendly with the disgraced Paul Manafort.

One of Rusal’s lesser shareholders has since donated a total of $3.5 million to the Senate Leadership Fund, a super PAC run by McConnell’s former chief of staff. Coincidence? McConnell pushed for Rusal’s eventual removal from sanctions.

With the unrest in Hong Kong, Trump tweeted ‘Our Intelligence has informed us that the Chinese Government is moving troops to the Border with Hong Kong. Everyone should be calm and safe!”

He then added “Many are blaming me, and the United States, for the problems going on in Hong Kong. I can’t imagine why?” Some Chinese officials believe that the US [or west] are backing the protesters. Unsure how.

Meanwhile the US Navy’s requests for two ships to make port visits in the coming weeks have been denied by the Chinese government. The US Navy never had any issues previously.

The Trump administration has informally green lit a potential major arms sale to Taiwan involving dozens of new F-16 fighter jets. The new weaponry could further erode ties, since Beijing views the self-governing island as part of China. Beijing has frequently protested the sales as a violation of China’s sovereignty despite the Chinese Communist Party having never governed the island.

Last month, the Trump administration approved selling 108 M1A2T Abrams tanks and portable Stinger anti-aircraft missiles to Taiwan, an arms package valued at $2.2 billion. Since 2010, the US has announced more than $15 billion in arms sales to Taiwan.

In response to another round of tariffs aimed at China on September 1st, $300 billion worth, Chinese buyers have cancelled multi-billion dollar purchases of US soybeans. Regulators are threatening to place American companies on an “unreliable entities” list that might face curbs on their operations. But the tariffs have been delayed now until December 15th.

Bipartisan lawmakers and foreign policy advocates have spoken out publicly against the move to cancel $4 billion in funds to the State Department and US Agency for International Development, warning about their impact on US foreign policy priorities. The Trump administration has sought to decrease what it believes is wasteful spending and make foreign aid more conditional on support for US policies. White House officials believe they have the authority to cancel the funds without congressional approval.

[Scratching your head time.] Trump has on multiple occasions brought up buying Greenland from the Danish government and the White House counsel’s office has looked into the possibility. The island’s government, however, said in a statement it’s not going to happen: “Greenland is not for sale.”

Greenland, an autonomous Danish territory, is home to Thule Air Base, the US military’s northernmost base, located about 750 miles above the Arctic Circle and built in 1951. The radar and listening post features a Ballistic Missile Early Warning System that can warn of incoming intercontinental ballistic missiles and reaches thousands of miles into Russian territory.

Former White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci said that Republicans may need to find a candidate to replace Trump in 2020. “We are now in the early episodes of ‘Chernobyl’ on HBO, where the reactor is melting down and the apparatchiks are trying to figure out whether to cover it up or start the clean-up process,” Scaramucci, who was ousted from his job after 11 days.

Trump decided to go after Bill Maher by tweeting “So many lies. He said patients in El Paso hospital didn’t want to meet with me. Wrong! Had really great meetings with numerous patients.” Except is known that some did refuse to see him. “He is right about one thing, though. I will win again in 2020. Otherwise, he pays 95% in taxes!” Wonder where he got the ridiculous 95% from. Oh forget hit.

The fake facts in chief mentioned the following recently:

  • First claiming that China had just posted its worst economic growth in 27 years. Later he said it was 35 years. Nothing changed in a week.
  • The remains of the soldiers from the Korean War will continue to come through Hawaii. In fact, North Korea has stopped cooperating with the remains recovery initiative and that the effort has been suspended for this year.
  • “There have been no nuclear tests. The missile tests have all been short-range. No ballistic missile tests. No long-range missiles.” Actually, North Korea continues to test ballistic missiles, even short range ones.
  • “As you know, we’ve got 32,000 soldiers on South Korean soil, and we’ve been helping them for about 82 years.” Actually 26,000 active personnel and the US has been in South Korea since the end of World War II – 74 years ago.
    “You have drug dealers that get not even 30 days, and they’ve killed 25 people.” Good luck in finding any evidence that this is true.
  • Trump claims that he has given farmers $16 billion to offset their loss from Chines tariffs. In fact, his $28 billion pledge to farmers exceeds the total tariff revenues as of last month [$21 billion].
  • “Americans are not paying for the Tariffs — they are being paid for compliments of China, and the U.S. is taking in tens of Billions of Dollars!” What the stable economics genius forgets is that American importers make the actual tariff payments, and economic studies have found that Americans have borne most of the cost.

Here we go again. Trump spewing #fakefacts, this time at a speech in Pennsylvania that was not supposed to be a campaign rally. Instead it was about energy.

  • “Pennsylvania has the best numbers they’ve ever had in the history of this state.” – Actually the best since 1976 but not ever.
  • “I built good.” – Yes. This is president of the US talking.
  • “…now nobody looks at Obama getting $60 million for a book…” – You cannot be the President and have other income according to the constitution. But that doesn’t stop former Presidents. And in this case it is $65 million for both Obama and his wife.
  • “We’re building a lot of wall.” – Just 46.7 miles of border wall have been built since Trump came into office.
  • Virginia “hasn’t been won by a Republican in a long time.” – Before Obama in 2008, the last Democrats to win in Virginia goes back to Lyndon Johnson.

Note that this wasn’t a campaign rally but Trump representing the country. So the gathering used taxpayer money. And yet he started to whine about Democrat hopefuls and other political stuff in addition to the above.

Trump recently took credit for building a $6 billion Shell plant in Pennsylvania that was announced in 2012 under President Obama. I don’t think you can build a refinery and have it running in under 30 months.

Trump also claimed the steel manufacturing was “dead”. It has declined maybe 1800 jobs in the past 4 months but still has over 379,300 workers.

Trump claimed that US Steel was to open or expand six facilities in 2018. Instead US steel is reducing production in 2 plants because of tariffs.

Trump claimed that Exxon Mobil recently invested in the gulf coast was because of him administration’s policies in fact was started in 2013.

Trump also took credit as his idea to install solar panels on border walls when the idea came from a private company.

In the past, Trump even took credit for inventing the word caravan!

Trump claims that he has lost between $3 and $5 billion in taking the current job instead of whatever he normally does. Of course this may or may not include at least one bankruptcy. If he is upset that he supposedly lost that much then resign!

In the ongoing attempt to curb immigration, a new rule came into effect by the Trump administration where many green card and visa applicants could be turned down if they have low incomes or little education.

The Trump administration announced significant changes that would weaken how the Endangered Species Act is implemented, a move critics fear will allow for more oil and gas drilling and limit how much regulators consider the impacts of the climate crisis. That act was credited with saving the bald eagle and grizzly bear from extinction.

The rule was panned by environmental groups that question Interior Secretary David Bernhardt’s motives, given his past work representing oil and gas companies. Conservationists and environmentalists will be lining up to challenge this revisions to the act.

In the usual “what was he smoking” announcement, Trump has claimed for years that he was once named “Michigan Man of the Year,” a title that does not exist. Who announces any “year” awards in the middle of summer?