The Emoluments Clause of the Constitution and Mr. Trump
There have been many assertions that President Trump's investments and holdings (both domestic and international) violate the Emoluments Clause of the Constitution.
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We hear talk of the "failed policies of the past". Have you considered which policies were failures? Who was responsible? Why were they undertaken? Here's just a short list of some failed policies. Make up your own list. Be honest about who implemented the policy and why they were implemented. Stop accepting the empty rhetoric of people who have no desire to correct failures, only gloss over and perpetuate failure to continue benefiting interest groups at the expense of all.
1930's to 2008 Entitlement Spending The Greatest economic threat confronting America today and Congress refuses to address the problem, instead, it insists on more entitlement spending.
Congress, Republican and Democratic, has gone wild with increases in entitlement spending. Even during the first decade of this century, special interests continue to raid the public treasury. George W. Bush's Administration has increased spending by 60% This is unsustainable. Entitlement spending is an even bigger house of cards than the sub prime mortgage crisis. It's being propped up by sleazy accounting. More and more people are being added to entitlement rolls, siphoning public funds. Even the venerable Social Security is in trouble. There is no Social Security Trust Fund, there are no assets put away. The Federal Government has taken in over TEN Trillion dollars, paid out less than eight trillion dollars and the difference has just been soaked up by irresponsible congresses which keep talking about the 'trust fund' - in reality, nothing more than an empty accounting entry. Either through ineptitude or outright lie, definitely a failed policy of the past.
1930's to 2008 Saudi Protectionism: Chuck Shumer (D, NY), June 2008, while decrying the high oil prices and threatening to sue OPEC, revealed the agreement: The US would protect the Saudi rulers and the Saudis would supply cheap oil. If this is the deal then it's easy to see why Congress places such impediments to domestic oil production. It may have worked for a while; but, over the last thirty years, the Saudi's have forgotten that they were to supply cheap oil. After the 1970's, when the price of oil spiked, it revitalized the American oil industry. The Saudi's saw this as a threat and dropped the price of oil to $10 per barrel. The American oil industry shriveled and all but died.
A young radical wanted to overthrow the Saudi reign but realized that it was hopeless with the support of the American military power. So, worldwide jihad was declared by Osama Bin Laden.
To prevent anarchy against the Royal Family, the sheiks contribute money to Wahhabis schools and terrorist factions. The cost of doing business, the cost of staying in power. Call it playing both ends against the middle or burning the candle from both ends. It keeps the Saudi Royal Family in power; in riches; in the royal lifestyle. It really doesn't matter who they hurt or destroy, their only goal is to protect themselves. And the rest of the world pays the price. Exorbitant oil prices; death and destruction by Saudi funded terrorists AND the terrorists who want to depose the Royal Family.
Protecting the Saudi Royalty - either through ineptitude or outright lie, definitely a failed policy of the past.
2008 Credit Crisis Twelve years of affirmative action lending (see, 1996 CRA, below) coupled with payola and legalized extortion culminate in the collapse of banking credit activity in the US and causes a tidal wave of credit worry through out the world. One lesson of the past that still holds true - follow the money. Who in Congress was protecting the corruption at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac? You can bet that the most important stooges were the ones getting the most money from Freddie and Fannie. Who got the most money? Senators Dodd (D, IL) and Obama (D, IL) who just happen to be on the Senate Banking Committee. Obama received $109,000 from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in just 2-1/2 years. Either through ineptitude or outright lie, definitely a failed policy of the past.
2008 Mortgage Bailout 300 Billion dollars in July 2008 by a Democratic Congress to solve the mortgage crisis. It takes less than three months to see that, either through ineptitude or outright lie, definitely a failed policy of the past.
Switch to Ethanol Bush caved to the environmental extremists. Despite a lack of objective evidence of environmental necessity to use ethanol and the foreseeable damage to the economy, food and energy prices and the resultant effect on the world economy (remember the riots over the prices of tortillas in Mexico, riots in Asia and Africa: increased world hunger and starvation) Mr Bush forced economic hardship on the world. Either through ineptitude or outright lie, definitely a failed policy of the past.
2006 Dem Promise to Lower Oil Prices: Prior to the 2006 elections, Nancy Pelosi (D, CA) railed at the outrageous price of $2.19/gallon for gas. Ms. Pelosi promised that the Democrats had a plan to lower gasoline prices. Despite having a majority of the House and Senate, gas prices have risen under a Democratic Congress to $4.00+/gallon. Oh, did Ms. Pelosi disclose to voters that she was heavily (by mere plebeian standards) invested in alternative energy plans with T. Boone Pickens? So, Nancy profits when oil and gas prices go up. Either through ineptitude or outright lie, definitely a failed policy of the past.
2006 Dem Promise to have Ethical Congress: Nancy Pelosi promised the most ethical Congress ever. Shortly after the new Dem majority was sworn in, they passed a sweeping ethics reform bill, championed by Barack Obama. A year later, the Dems found the legislation inconvenient and stripped the act of most of its reform provisions. Charlie Rangle (D, NY) who heads the Congressional committee that writes the tax laws is found to have been EVADING taxes for the last 20 years. His explanation, he didn't know that he had to report the income. And he writes the tax code. Nancy? Oh, she fully supports the Democrat from New York. There will be no ethics inquiry of Mr. Rangle's illegal tax evasion. Either through ineptitude or outright lie, definitely a failed policy of the past.
2005-2006 Dems Reject Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac Reform along party Lines Barney Franks (D, MA) argued that there was no banking problem, it was just the rascally Republicans trying to stifle loans to the 'under-privileged'. With the help of Senator Christopher Dodd (D, IL) reforms go down to defeat along party lines. At the time, Allan Greenspan warned of future banking crisis with dire consequences. See, 2008 Credit Crisis, above. Now Barney's saying if they can't pay for their house, just give it to them. Either through ineptitude or outright lie, definitely a failed policy of the past.
1996 Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) Signed by a Democratic President, a Democratic Congress passed the CRA, effectively creating an affirmative action lending program. The CRA has been used to manipulate banks into making non credit worthy loans on the basis of helping the underprivileged. 'Legal' extortion tactics are employed by groups such as Jesse Jackson's Rainbow Coalition and ACORN to browbeat banks and lending institutions into making loans and mortgages to non qualifying individuals. At the same time, these community organizers garner millions in fees and donations to go away and let the bankers do their business. Then Congress sweetens the deal. Freddie and Fannie buy up all the bad loans - hey, this is affirmative action lending! And how do the bankers react? Just like everybody else. If the government wants to buy garbage, there are plenty of people who will sell them garbage. No deceit, Fannie and Freddie knew they were buying garbage and the bankers knew they were selling garbage. And how did Congress discipline Fannie and Freddie? Congress made more money available, accepted political contributions from Fannie and Freddie and Barney and Christopher ran interference for continuation of affirmative action lending. Either through ineptitude or outright lie, definitely a failed policy of the past.
1993 Not Drilling for Oil in ANWR: Notwithstanding founding provisions of the Atlantic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) which established a portion of the land to be set aside for oil exploration, a Democratic President, courting the favor of environmental extremists, refused to sign a bill allowing drilling. He said that it would take ten (10) years for America to see the oil from ANWR. Fifteen (15) years later, the US is still wanting ANWR oil. Either through ineptitude or outright lie, definitely a failed policy of the past.
1965 Great Society: A Democratic President leads a Democratic Congress into passing a sweeping welfare program to lift all Americans out of poverty. Sounds GREAT! Thirty years and six TRILLION dollars later, almost everybody concedes that the Great Society didn't work. A Republican Congress forces a Democratic President to sign the Welfare to Workfare program. Barack Obama admits that he was surprised that Welfare to Workfare was such a success.
The success of Welfare to Workfare hasn't yet been decided. While many were removed from welfare rolls, an even greater number were added to other entitlement programs. Whether Welfare to Workfare eventually turns out to be 'robbing Peter to pay Paul' is yet to be determined.
The Great Society: Either through ineptitude or outright lie, definitely a failed policy of the past.
1960's Ban of DDT: Rachel Carson wrote a little book to scare everyone into banning the use of pesticides, saying that some day there might be a Silent Spring due to the build-up of pesticides in the flora and fauna. As a result, the use of a wonderful pesticide, DDT, was banned. As a result, millions of people have died worldwide due to malaria and other pest borne diseases that would have been eliminated had DDT been used. While some may feel that the hypothesis of potential environmental damage is more important than the millions of people who have died because of the unproven fear, others feel that life and death is more valid than hypothesis. The ban on DDT: either through ineptitude or outright lie, a failed policy of the past which continues to kill millions of people.
1930's Kudzu to Prevent Soil Erosion: During the Depression years, the Federal Government sought to cure all of the ills of the country. In the South, soil erosion was a problem. A program was developed to plant a Japanese weed, kudzu, to prevent erosion. It saved the soil and put people to work. Sounds like a great plan. Only it worked too well. In the south, where kudzu had no natural enemy and the climate was favorable, kudzu could grow up to 12 inches in a day. Kudzu took over, strangling crops and covering buildings. The Government tried to remove the kudzu but could never keep up with the problem. Facing the hopelessness of containing kudzu, the Feds gave up. The kudzu's still there, covering the South with lush green weed. Either through ineptitude or outright lie, definitely a failed policy of the past.
All of these failed policies of the past share a common thread: Big government trying to affect a social change where no one considered the consequences of the good intentions. Nor did they consider or protect against the greed and corruption of their own members and special interests which manipulated the programs to garner unearned benefits.
And what of the Future? It's not hard to see that some of the proposals for future implementation are doomed to fail. The only question, how big and costly the failure. Let's look at a few:
Get America off Oil: Wow, sounds great! We won't be sending $700 billion a year to people who hate us. We'll just use wind, solar and electricity. Maybe we'll even add tidal movement and geothermal and compressed natural gas. Joe Biden has said no coal, clean or dirty; no nuclear.
No More Oil: It'll be a ten year program, just like going to the moon. Yeah, sure. Undoubtedly to be delivered by the tooth fairy - oops sorry, I forgot T. Boone Pickens and Nancy Pelosi's new project. Seriously, consider how pervasive the use of oil and petroleum products are in the US. From cosmetics to every home appliance, TV's, cars, furniture. It's impossible to remove the US's UTILIZATION, not dependency upon petroleum products. It's impossible to stop using petroleum products in the US, unless the country is prepared to revert from a 21st to a 19th century lifestyle.
Don't believe it?
Look at the conversion from analog to digital television. Simple enough, right? Just have everybody ditch their old TV's and get a new digital TV. And, have all the TV stations transmit digital signals rather than the old type (analog) signal. What'll that take? six months? Maybe a year? No. Try 13 years. From 1996 to 2009. And how many millions of dollars has the Federal Government spent in just buying converter boxes for people who couldn't or didn't want to buy a new digital TV?
Well what about the moon shot? That was a single event to hurl one object from earth to the moon. Hundreds of thousands of people and hundreds of millions of dollars were required. To get off oil, we're talking about changing virtually every product and every system in American. Ten years? Folks, it ain't gonna happen. Fifty years with concerted effort? Maybe. A hundred years is more likely. After all, essentially everything in America has to be redesigned and replaced. Either through ineptitude or outright lie, definitely a failed policy of the future.
Blame Big Oil, Blame Wall Street, Blame Corporations, Blame WalMart Class envy and economic warfare against those who have succeeded at capitalism. Sheer size is all that's required to be the subject of this socialist diatribe. This country, despite all the claims of religious freedom, was based on capitalism. Nobody revolted over the Anglican Church jailing Baptist preachers (yes, that happened). The revolution was over money, taxation. When Joe Biden (D, DE) says it's patriotic to pay taxes, he's telling a great big communist lie. If paying taxes was patriotic, there would never have been a Boston Tea Party. England needed funds to replenish after fighting the Canadian French and Indian threat. After the threat was removed, Colonists didn't want to pay. Parliament made the same argument, paying taxes is patriotic. The American Colonists have so much, surely they want to give money to the King. The King got a revolt, not taxes. The Jamestown settlement was a commercial, investor venture. The Virginia Company wanted to make a profit. America doesn't have royal families. It has families that are financially successful. And it doesn't really matter how they got the money. The Kennedy fortune came from illegally bootlegging Canadian Scotch. Getting rich is the American dream and more and more the reason for going to Washington. Class envy is the Communist mantra.
The fallacy of raising taxes on corporations? The corporation is going to pass the increased expense on to the consumer. That's you and me. Their product no longer competitive? They're going to move the plant out of the country. Ultimately, the consumer pays corporate tax. It's just an expense to the corporation.
The blame game plays to the basest instincts of greed. Not the greed of those who have made it but the unfulfilled greed of people who want but don't have. From the earliest colonies of this country, Jamestown proved that socialism doesn't work. And, the blame game is nothing more than socialist class envy. The blame game, either through ineptitude or outright lie, definitely a failed policy of the past, present and future.
Use Less Energy Than 1990: Absurd. Is the US going to have less population than 1990? What, we're going to kill off a huge number of people? Or deport them? Accept a vastly diminished lifestyle? The American lifestyle depends on energy. Cheap energy. Unless the plan is eliminate people, the focus should be upon the growth of an affordable energy supply. Right now, that's petroleum. The US needs more, at a reduced price. Say that the US is being greedy or self centered but if the US economy falters, the rest of the world will fail. Unless one is an environmental extremist who welcomes the collapse of society and living in huts, the policy of less energy, either through ineptitude or outright lie, definitely a failed policy of the future.
Cap and Trade Unfortunately, both Dem and Republican are pushing Cap and Trade taxation. Despite the absence of evidence of anthropogenic carbon based climate change, Cap and Trade with cripple US economic growth and put America at a disadvantage compared to India, China and Russia. India and China aren't having anything to do with Cap and Trade or any attempt to curb carbon emissions. Russia has declared Climate change to be a non issue that will not even be talked about in 20 years; Australia recently declared anthropogenic climate change a hoax and abandoned all carob curbing policies; Britons are increasingly disavowing their government's adoption of Carbon based regulations and declaring the regulations to be worthless. If there is a silver lining to the Credit Crisis, it's that even more disastrous Cap and Trade policies may be too costly to implement. Cap and Trade / anthropogenic climate change - definitely a failed policy of the future.
America is faced with a choice: more entitlement spending, bigger and more expensive government, increased taxation and, sooner or later, societal collapse under the economic burden of government; someone who learned how to operate at ACORN and took more payola and graft in a shorter period of time than anyone else? This is the person who's going to solve the problem that he and his friends perpetrated?
an attempt at reduced spending, economic reality and a chance at perpetuation of our society. No one knows if he'll be able to accomplish these goals. But the record is clear. He saw the potential of the current credit crisis in 2005 and supported taking action, then. He did not choose to ride it out like the Democrats who refused to admit that a problem existed.
Yes, it really is that simple. Ask yourself, is the plan going to help America? Is it going to be effective on day one? Or, will we have to wait long enough for the economy to recover so that the plan doesn't finish off the country and plunge America into desperation and despair? While one may not be right for the future, the other is definitely wrong.
Unfortunately, these are our choices. Regardless of the pretty words, adoption of failed policies of the past will lead to a collapse of the American economy and devastation to the world economy. Then, the pretty words will be, as Shakespeare wrote, nothing more than a tempest in a teapot, a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.
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The ramblings of an old coot who knows that no one is going to pay any attention to what he says. But, say it he will because when it`s too late, people will say, `why didn`t you tell us, why didn`t you say something` and I can say, `I did, you didn`t listen`
So, these will be the warnings of one too old for you to hear, too resolute for you to heed. It will be easy to ignore me. You`ll say that I`m a racist or a bigot, a redneck or a right wing extremist, just don`t say that I didn`t warn you.