In his latest FIREWALL, Bill Whittle talks about the cruelties and consequences of a world where nothing matters except HOW YOU FEEL.
David Mamet famously said (paraphrased): ‘when questioned on policy and consequence, in order to avoid the conflict within their ideological message, modern liberals will always pretend not to know things.’
In today’s audio/visual example we find top national democrat leadership pretending not to know their rebranding message, “A Better Deal“, is nothing short of an almost identical policy platform created by the current President, Donald Trump. A policy platform they are committed to blocking.
You just can’t make this stuff up folks.
Seriously, it took months of carefully poll tested review of each specific point to create the agenda that Democrats hope will help them win election in 2018. However, if you look at the substance of their “Better Deal” proposals a person cannot help but find themselves feeling deja vu, all over again.
The platform includes: •a $15 minimum wage (economically inadvisable and already having devastating consequences in local areas of enactment), •a $1 trillion infrastructure plan (hey, isn’t that Trump’s idea?), •new trade laws more beneficial to American workers (wait, what, yup, Trump again?), •and a plan to engage in job training and national apprenticeship initiatives (yup, more Trump). Heck, if they throw in a modern Glass-Stegall they can just call it “Trump’s Better Deal 2.0”, or something.
What makes the entire exercise intensely ludicrous is the amount of energy, effort and execution they put into the roll-out:
[…] Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California, along with other top House and Senate Democrats, are making the presentation after months of internal debate and analysis of polling and focus groups. (read more)
So the Democrats spent months of internal debate, analysis and focus group testing, only to exit with a populist national Democrat plan that mirrors the policy objectives of the current President of the United States. Those same Trump policy objectives the same Democrat leadership are on record saying they will fight tooth-and-nail to ensure never reach fruition.
It would be funny if the irony wasn’t so serious.
Wait, no…. it is both ironic and actually funny.
2018 will be fun.
Everything is proceeding according to a natural and predictable path. Mr. Scaramucci is now in charge of White House messaging, the focus can now look toward the Capitol and go on offense; the “Big Ugly” is very clearly on the horizon.
Anxious Trump voters have been understandably frustrated by the lack of speed with which President Trump is able to force the MAGA agenda onto an unwilling DC political apparatus. However, if you step back and look at the scope of the challenge, the situation is entirely understandable.
Donald Trump was a 100% pure political outsider, a citizen politician. There was never any underlying organizational apparatus to support victory. There was Dan, Hope, Michael and Corey; later Paul then Kellyanne and Steve. Everything else needed to be constructed from scratch and even the party apparatus didn’t support candidate Trump.
On November 9th 2016 President-elect Trump did not wake up with a staff of 50 political career employees sitting at Trump desks with Rolodexes filled with a network of affiliate political allies, personnel and associates to call upon to create the Trump administration. Consequently President Trump needed to import the entire administrative personnel architecture to support the move to the White House.
President-elect Trump approached that challenge by hiring the Chairman of the RNC, Reince Priebus to fill out the hundreds of empty chairs. Priebus brought a staff mostly from the RNC and his own network of contacts. Many of those people were not self-described deplorables, or MAGA-minded; hence, the leaking etc.
The Heritage Foundation, and a few other late-coming allied political groups were brought on to provide some more legislative-minded bodies to help turn the Trump populist and pragmatic campaign platform into actionable policy and legislation. There simply wasn’t a decades old MAGA think tank as a resource. Again, sub-contracting needed.
Understanding the dynamic of building out the administrative architecture leads to an understanding of the visible frustration. However, this is exactly what citizen political operations look like absent of career political operatives familiar with all historic national political efforts.
The same outsider challenge applies to the thousands of political appointments etc. Many of those remain unfilled, and many of the unfilled will probably remain unfilled because they are not value added when looked upon from the outside of an administrative state. Even fully staffed, the Trump administration, when carried through all cabinet departments, will be thousands of people less than all recent presidencies.
Six months into the administration the sub-contracted group is not as critical as initially the case on day #1.
The removal of the sub-contracted agents is a natural outcome of a process of filling out the administration with people who are more in line with the totality of the policy and ideology behind it.
This is why we previously shared: in the course of time, if you followed the process to its natural conclusion, there is bound to be a confrontation between the intransigent DC administrative and permanent political class -versus- President Trump and Team MAGA. I called this predictable confrontation – “The Big Ugly”.
No longer needing the RNC outlook, MAGA-minded Anthony Scaramucci is now essentially Divisional VP in charge of White House Communications. The next position to be filled will be “Chief-of-Staff”. In that position we might see a Jim DeMint or similar; someone who is on board with the outsider approach, but insider aptitude.
Chris Christie, Rudy Giuliani and other visible Trump-minded supporters may now resurface as the foundation to support the purpose of their endeavors is more solidly in place.
As this transitional process of retooling, sharpening the saw, takes place; Trump also doesn’t waste any time. President Trump prepares to do battle with the administrative state who have shown no compunction to advance MAGA policy and have ignored or rebuked his outstretched hand. Again, this confrontation is natural and entirely expected.
Thus we begin to see visible signs of the approach within tweets targeting politicians who stand in opposition to the agenda that President Trump ran on.
Many people might wonder what took so long. However, when we take time to understand the nature of a complete political outsider winning the office of the Presidency and all that encompasses, we begin to understand the best part of what we voted for is only possible when the architecture to support it is fully in place.
We are nearing that point.
Winter is coming for the intransigent professional political class.
Armstrong Economics Blog/China
Re-Posted Jul 24, 2017 by Martin Armstrong
QUESTION: Mr. Armstrong; I believe you once said at your conference that you were surprised when you were asked to fly to Beijing to meet with the central bank because you were not an academic, but a trader. I think you said when you got there they were traders working in the bank, not academics. Did I recall that story correctly?
ANSWER: Yes. The central bank had sent staff to work on trading desks around the world in Tokyo, New York, and London. They then returned to run the bank. When the 1997 Asian Currency Crisis hit, I was very surprised that they asked me to come and not some academic. When I got there, I discovered that they were traders and we spoke the same language.
When I returned to the States, people I knew in the Fed and in Treasury called to ask me my opinion after these meetings with the Chinese government. I responded: It was great. They only hired people with experience!
I understand so many people think China does whatever I say. I think the real story is they may take what I say, but they see it through the eyes of a trader rather than an academic. Hence, they adopt it quickly but never blindly. They have a good nose for trends themselves.
Armstrong Economics Blog/Rule of Law
Re-Posted Jul 24, 2017 by Martin Armstrong
QUESTION: Mr. Armstrong; I read your article on CNN imposing a fiduciary duty upon the directors as a public corporation. I tried to search if corporations truly have constitutional rights. It seems that there is a conflict on that subject and they may not have such rights at the end of the day. Would you care to explain this matter?
Thank you for your financial and legal expertise.
ANSWER: You are correct. There is a tremendous conflict of laws when it comes to constitutional rights and corporations. My own case of contempt illustrated that conflict. I was never actually held in contempt P E R S O N A L L Y. I the individual was never held for 7 years. It was only the corporate officer since the Supreme Court deemed in 1988 that the 5th Amendment Privilege does not apply to corporate officers. Braswell v United States 487 US 99 (1988) held “The custodian of corporate records may not resist a subpoena for such records on the ground that the act of production will incriminate him in violation of the Fifth Amendment.”
Then you have the decision in Citizens United, where the Supreme Court’s 2010 ruling allowed unlimited corporate and union spending on political issues under the First Amendment. Corporations have the right to enter into contracts with other parties and to sue or be sued in court in the same manner as individuals. Yet there is a great deal of conflict of laws regarding various rights. Chief Justice Roberts wrote in Riley v. California (1914) that Corporations cannot be arrested and do not have “bodies” to be searched under the Fourth Amendment.
Arthur Andersen used to be one of the big five accounting firms. The government criminally charged it and put the firm out of business back in 2002 when companies were not too big to prosecute. In 2002, the firm voluntarily surrendered its licenses to practice as Certified Public Accountants in the United States after being found guilty of criminal charges relating to the firm’s handling of the auditing of Enron, the Texas energy corporation, which had filed for bankruptcy in 2001. Arthur Anderson agreed to admit it committed a crime by shredding Enron-related documents. Yet a corporation cannot be jailed. So how can it be criminally prosecuted?
The criminal charge faced by Andersen was obstruction of justice under 18 U.S.C., Section 1512(b), which easily could have applied to Hillary’s lawyers, but Comey gave them immunity while the Justice Department put 85,000 out of work by criminally prosecuting the firm. In order to violate that section, the defendant must “corruptly persuade” someone to destroy documents. The defendant also has to intend that the documents won’t be available for legal proceedings. Former Arthur Andersen partner David Duncan pleaded guilty to obstruction as an individual.
A corporations is a legal construct that dates back to ancient Rome. It cannot commit a physical act such as obstruction of justice. So, how did Congress get past this problem when it wants to punish a company as a whole and destroy it? The government simply attributes the acts and intentions of the company’s employees to the company itself. This approach was sanctioned by the the Supreme Court which first endorsed the idea back in the 1909 case of New York Central and Hudson River Railroad Co. v. United States. When government wants to get around something, they just play with the words and reasoning. There the Supreme Court ruled that since corporations were already liable in civil cases for their employees’ bad conduct, then why no extend that rule to the criminal law despite the fact that the corporation cannot be imprisoned?
In 1886 the Supreme Court accepted the argument that corporations were people and that “their money was protected by the due process clause of the 14th Amendment.” Another example is that in Nike v. Kasky, Nike asserted a free speech ‘right to lie’, while in Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Hobby Lobby asserted a freedom of religion ‘right’ to exempt itself from aspects of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
There are just too many inconsistencies. Either a corporation has constitutional rights fully, or it should have none. You can’t be just little be pregnant as they say.
Re-Posted Jul 24, 2017 by Martin Armstrong
The Laser Technology is actually using the cyclical frequency spectrum of light. I have stated numerous times, that everything has its frequency. It is all about cycles within everything. Understanding that basic foundation, allows us to hone in on what effect each frequency will produce. Welcome to the world of complexity.
A good discussion on the current situation we are in politics.
Armstrong Economics Blog/Corruption
Re-Posted Jul 23, 2017 by Martin Armstrong
QUESTION: Mr. Armstrong; Trump appoint another ex-Goldman Sachs guy as the head of the SEC. Some say he is not draining the swamp but filling it. Care to comment?
ANSWER: Walter J. “Jay” Clayton III firm where he worked represented Goldman but he did not work for Goldman. He comes from Sullivan & Cromwell, which represents just about every bank in New York. They are extremely influential in New York City to a very very very large extent. I believe this is a bit misleading piece.
Clayton disclosed to the United States Office of Government Ethics that his clients have included Deutsche Bank, UBS, Volkswagen, SoftBank Group, The Weinstein Company, Reid Hoffman, Paul Tudor Jones, Ocwen’s leader, as well as both Pershing Square Capital Management and Valeant Pharmaceuticals.
He is a huge improvement over Mary-Jo White who has been a government groupie most of her life with no real experience in the field. She was a prosecutor who let Republic/HSBC plead criminally guilty, return $650 million, kept $400 million in profits, and no jail time.
This is Clayton’s first venture into government and he has made enough over the years to afford to take such a job.
Armstrong Economics Blog/European Union
Re-Posted Jul 23, 2017 by Martin Armstrong
QUESTION: Mr. Armstrong; Is Google really violating European antitrust laws to warrant such a huge fine or is this really a trade war?
ANSWER: It’s a trade war. Granted, the EU hit Google with a record-breaking fine of €2.4 billion ($2.7 billion, £2.1 billion) by European regulators who accused the California-based technology giant of abusing its dominant position and promoting its own shopping service in its search results over those of its competitors.
The European Union Commission claims this is the culmination of a multiyear investigation into Google’s business practices dating back nearly a decade. This in itself proves this is nonsense for the past decade has witnessed a dramatic change in how products are being sold. Amazon has been growing tremendously in sales putting many stores out of business like Sears.
Things are changing. The beginning of this whole antitrust violation took place with the Sherman Antitrust Act passed in the USA back in 1890. The theory was you had all these small railroad companies and they were merging into large regional railroads. The politicians called this a monopoly that put people out of jobs as companies merged and eliminate duplication.
Once again we have dramatic changes to the retail industry. The politicians behind this nonsense of fining Google are just (1) greedy and (2) ignorant. Amazon is already starting to create showrooms where you can go at look at products and then it will be delivered to you in days. This is the way retail is changing. Here is a search I entered for a Sony Laptop. Yes at the top it come up with Google shopping and it says sponsored. However, it shows competitive brands. At the bottom of the page is Amazon. Yes they are competing against Amazon. Does that warrant a huge fine or are politicians just trying to come up with creative means to get more money because they are dead broke?