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Member since: Fri Apr 4, 2014, 04:21 PM
Number of posts: 16,104

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Trump budget would eliminate federal agencies working to boost rural Alabama economies

Alabama rural voters rewarded!

Source: al.com, by Connor Sheets

President Donald Trump's proposed federal budget would eliminate two agencies that spend millions of dollars each year providing services and opportunities for communities in Alabama's Black Belt and Appalachia regions.

The Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) and Delta Regional Authority (DRA) are among the lesser-known federal agencies. But their efforts have real impact on some of Alabama's rural communities.

Both ARC and DRA are federal-state partnerships that have invested tens of millions of dollars in Alabama over the past decade. They rely on public and private funding to help boost economic development, make infrastructure improvements, create jobs and otherwise improve opportunities in rural areas of select states including Alabama.

Between October 2015 and January 2017 alone, "ARC has supported 64 projects in Alabama totaling $11.2 million. These investments have been matched by $24.0 million and will attract an additional $21.6 million in leveraged private investments in Alabama," Wendy Wasserman, a spokeswoman for ARC, said via email. "They will also create or retain nearly 900 jobs, [and] train and educate more than 14,000 students and workers."

Between 2002 and 2016, DRA "has collaborated with public and private entities to invest $71.5 million in the Black Belt from 2002-2016," according to the agency.

Read it all - and a great many deplorable comments - at:


"You shouldn't be talking to me. You should be talking to Fox."


U.S. Treasury begins more cash management measures due to debt limit

This is kind of flying under the radar - for now.

Source: Reuters

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on Thursday announced further cash management measures to avoid a U.S. default.

In a letter to House of Representatives Speaker Paul Ryan, Mnuchin said that Treasury would no longer be able to fully invest in three retirement and investment funds for federal workers.

They are the Civil Service Retirement and Disability Fund, the Postal Service Retiree Health Benefits Fund, and the Government Securities Investment Fund of the Federal Employees' Retirement System, according to the letter.

All the funds would be made whole once the debt limit is increased, Mnuchin said. "Federal retirees and employees will be unaffected by these actions," he added.

A suspension of the debt limit by Congress, which had allowed normal borrowing to continue, expired on Wednesday.

The United States is one of only a few nations where the legislature must approve periodic increases in the legal limit on how much money the federal government can borrow.


UPDATED UPDATE: Landing pad ready for Marine One at Mar-a-Lago

"Air Force One is expected to arrive tonight at 6:30 p.m."

Source: Palm Beach Post, by William Kelly

The helicopter landing pad has been completed at President Trump’s Mar-a-Lago Club, in time for the president to use when he arrives at the estate tonight.

The landing pad was built to accommodate Marine One. It is on the western lawn of the 20-acre estate.

The pad enables Trump to travel by helicopter when making the four-mile trip from the Palm Beach International Airport to his “winter White House.”

Air Force One is expected to arrive tonight at 6:30 p.m.

The president has been landing at the airport, then taking a limo to Mar-a-Lago during weekend visits to the estate. The visits require travel restrictions and detours, and have triggered traffic delays.

The pad will enable Trump to ride in Marine One from the airport to the island without his motorcade tying up traffic. It does not, however, change Secret Service-mandated road closures around Mar-a-Lago, and the Southern Boulevard Bridge will be closed while Marine One is in the air.


Is taking a motorcade once again! Greeters line the road!

Why is the Trump presidency such a rolling disaster?

Source: WaPo, by Paul Waldman


What’s going on? The administration isn’t failing because of some brilliant strategy on Democrats’ part. They’re being weighed down by problems of their own making. In isolation each problem would be difficult but ultimately manageable; together they’re giving the administration nothing but bad days. Let’s take them each in turn:

Abysmal management. Trump was only the latest in a long line of political figures who argued that if someone from outside politics took over the government, he’d whip it into shape with his business savvy and management expertise. The result has been the most chaotic and incompetent White House anyone can remember. As Politico reported Wednesday, “A culture of paranoia is consuming the Trump administration, with staffers increasingly preoccupied with perceived enemies — inside their own government,” creating “an environment of fear that has hamstrung the routine functioning of the executive branch.”


A disastrous first legislative priority. Republicans may have had no choice but to pursue the repeal of the ACA right off the bat, but they could hardly have gone about it in a less competent way. After seven years of attacking the law, they still hadn’t settled on their alternative, leading to a hastily written plan that not only would create a health-care catastrophe if implemented but also managed to win the displeasure of their members in both the Senate (for being too harsh) and the House (for not being harsh enough). Now the White House is saying it’s Paul Ryan’s fault, Ryan is trying to make Trump share the blame, and the whole thing is spiraling downward. Rich Lowry, the editor of the conservative National Review, writes that the repeal bill “has had the worst rollout of any major piece of legislation in memory,” and has left the GOP “staring into the abyss.”

An impulsive, distracted president. People keep wondering if the latest Trump outburst is a clever ploy to distract the country from whatever piece of bad news is currently vexing the administration. But the one who’s easily distractible is the president himself, and then he in turn distracts his staff and congressional allies. Just look at what’s happening with his accusation that President Barack Obama tapped his phones. On impulse, after reading an article on a white nationalist website, Trump levels a ludicrous and baseless charge, then everyone in the White House has to pretend that it’s serious and legitimate, and they’re forced to answer questions about it for weeks. All that time could be spent advancing an affirmative agenda.


Much as you can blame Republicans in Congress, including Ryan, for being Trump’s enablers, there’s no doubt that they’re not happy about how things are going. And as time goes on and their minds turn to the 2018 elections, they’re going to start thinking more and more about their own survival. Given that even in the best of times the president’s party usually loses seats in the midterms, they may begin looking for ways to separate themselves from an unpopular president, which is only going to make future legislating more complicated.

Read it all at: https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/wp/2017/03/16/why-is-the-trump-presidency-such-a-rolling-disaster/?utm_term=.067e4a9a8386

Gov't report: More than 12M signed up for 'Obamacare'

Some things we don't hear about!

Source: AP, by Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar and Alan Fram


"This report is a reminder that while there's a big debate in Washington about the future of the Affordable Care Act, the law remains in place for now and is covering millions of people," said Larry Levitt of the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation. The report was issued by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which also administers the ACA's insurance markets.


The market "remains fairly stable in 2017 compared to previous years," said Caroline Pearson of the consulting firm Avalere Health.

The report also underscored the importance of the ACA's financial assistance, a combination of tax credits to help pay premiums and reduced cost sharing for people with low incomes.

Even though list price premiums for a standard "silver" plan went up by more than 20 percent this year, the average premium paid by HealthCare.gov customers after receiving their tax credit only went up by $1 this year, the report said. HealthCare.gov is the federal online insurance market serving 39 states; the remaining states run their own websites.

Nationally, more than 8 in 10 enrollees were eligible for income-based tax credits to help pay their premiums, and nearly 6 in 10 were eligible for additional assistance with out-of-pocket costs like deductibles and copayments, the report said.


It's all at: http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_CONGRESS_HEALTH_OVERHAUL?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2017-03-15-15-08-58

Fox News can't handle Rachel Maddow's tax scoop

Source: Washington Post, by Eric Wemple


“When Donald Trump declared as a presidential candidate that he would not release his tax returns, he became the first president since the Watergate era to refuse to release his returns,” said Maddow as part of a nearly 20-minute riff on presidents, Trump and tax-return releases.


This morning, Fox News media critic Howard Kurtz picked up on the timing issue: “This was a big-time blunder by Rachel Maddow…. By touting the Twitter and hyping it, she gave the White House time to put out a statement of its own not just criticizing the media but confirming the basic facts that President Trump did in fact pay $38 million in taxes that year, so she fumbled away the scoop.”

That’s one narrow, shallow and ignorant way of looking at the sequence of events. A less narrow, shallow and ignorant perspective would acknowledge that … RACHEL MADDOW AND DAVID CAY JOHNSTON FORCED THE WHITE HOUSE TO ISSUE A STATEMENT DISCLOSING INFORMATION ABOUT PRESIDENT TRUMP’S TAXES. Have you ever pulled off such a stunt, Howard Kurtz? Remember, this is a president who, as Maddow herself highlighted, has bucked decades of tradition by refusing to disclose his taxes. The White House’s Kellyanne Conway in January even sounded a cocky note about the refusal to go transparent: “We litigated this all through the election. People didn’t care,” said Conway. So: Whether the White House issued its statement before Maddow’s show, in the middle of Maddow’s opening monologue, during the first commercial break, right when she was clearing her throat — who cares?



After playing clips of NBC News/MSNBC clips about Trump, Hannity riffed, “All these conspiracies — it’s a concerted effort by a so-called news organization. Why? Perhaps to take down the president? Steve Bannon, I argue, was right: The alt-left propaganda media is the opposition party in America today. They’re not news anymore. And by the way, did NBC News care when the IRS targeted conservatives specifically to intimidate them?” More: “What Rachel Maddow, if you could stomach — I had to laugh; it actually made me laugh, frankly, harder than I have in ten years — was a flat-out pathetic conspiratorial attempt to smear the president.”

It bears noting that “The Rachel Maddow Show” is starting to best Fox News in a key television rating metric. That is a big deal in the media world. Could we be witnessing the coalescence of the Trump opposition into a bona fide cable-news audience — one that a channel like MSNBC can cultivate? And could the freakout from Hannity, Kurtz & Co. signal that Fox News is very, very worried about this prospect?

Read it all at: https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/erik-wemple/wp/2017/03/15/fox-news-cant-handle-rachel-maddows-tax-scoop/?hpid=hp_no-name_opinion-card-f%3Ahomepage%2Fstory&utm_term=.3a90e184929d

Insane twump tweet of the day - yeah, it's early but...

Tying it all together.

The Corrupt One accuses former president of "wiretapping" his tower.

Will not offer any proof.

Putin collaborator Assange releases hacked CIA documents alleging all kinds of surveillance methods available.

Now, Propaganda Minister Con Way proclaims - instead of evidence:

“What I can say is there are many ways to surveil each other,” Conway said as the Trump presidency marked its 50th day in office during the weekend. “You can surveil someone through their phones, certainly through their television sets — any number of ways.”

Conway went on to say that the monitoring could be done with “microwaves that turn into cameras,” adding: “We know this is a fact of modern life.”


Stunned, skeptical reporters push back - for example:

Enter Mr. Precedent's informative, presidential comment on all this today!


What's in your future?


Twump tweets today.


All is well! Look at the headlines!

Breitbart: 7 Reasons Why Obamacare 2.0 Is All But Guaranteed to Impose Crushing Costs on Voters, Hurt Trump’s Base, And Hand Power Back to the Democrats

Infowars: Sen. Rand Paul on Paul Ryan’s Obamacare Lite: Speaker ‘Trying to Pull the Wool Over the Eyes of the President’

Free Republic: RyanCare is Worse

The White House bubble remains intact!
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