Grifters and Crooks, the entire Trump Administration!

I don’t pretend to have special inside information on details of the most recent guilty pleas and indictments of three recent Trump administration officials. But I would like to emphasize the huge amount of plain old-fashioned greed, sleaze, public corruption, by this bunch of thieving grifters.

Part of one indictment I just saw charges involved receiving millions of dollars in expensive oriental rugs, fancy sports cars, extra luxury homes or condos, and large sums secretly put into untraceable bank accounts by other, often foreign criminals — like various Russian or Ukrainian kleptocrats and monsters like Mobutu and Savimbi.

Obviously the Trump campaign manager for 5 months was not exactly the type of fellow who would understand the concerns of looking out for unemployed former WV coal miners who are losing their hard-won health and pension benefits to people like Wilbur Ross, the Trump Secretary of Commerce, who made billions doing just that. And who have become addicted to opioids/opiates by the constant pains of all those broken bones and black lung disease.

Trump really did an excellent job at convincing a lot of poor- to -middle-income White working people that he was on their side. But it was all a con. Exactly NONE of his policies have done anything to improve the economy. That road reconstruction and public works program that was going to put millions of Americans to work?

Wait — what DID happen to that? It was on the news for a week, and that’s about that. No new high speed inter- or intra-City rapid mass transit system. That stupid Wall has a couple of prototype sections under construction (and if you think the Mexican government is going to pay for it, I have a nice, tall tower I’d like to sell you right in the national Mall in Washington DC. It’s beautiful marble and can be seen day or night. For a small but substantial fee, you too can buy a share of what used to be the “Washington Monument”. Send me your email, SSN, bank routing number, PIN and list of passwords while you’re at it!!)

Then add on top of that what we know about Flynn’s lies and the anti-education, anti-science and pro-polluter policies of the current heads of the EPA, Interior, and Education, you realize these folks aren’t even “conservatives” if that word means anything. There is nothing good about past policy or practice or law that they want to keep. They want to rearrange the playing field until they have it all, and to hell with the environment and livelihoods of the rest of us.

That being said, I want to be clear that both the Democratic and Republican party leaderships are guilty of kowtowing to the wealthiest and most powerful — Wall Street, Goldman Sachs, and the other dozen or so people who own as much wealth as HALF OF THE HUMAN POPULATION OF THIS PLANET, COMBINED.

Much of The deregulation of banks and finance occurred under Clinton and was continued under every single following administration.

That insane, confusing, many-thousand page tax code? The vast majority of its provisions were inserted by congress staffers to benefit a tiny number of wealthy corporations, often just one firm. Will the Trump tax cut for the wealthy change that? Maybe a couple of them will be cancelled for show (like what Cheeto did at the Carrier plant) while the other special tax breaks will live on and plus, the rich will get all the tax breaks anyway, and we will still have a military stronger than the rest of the world together…. because why? To where exactly has the amazing American military brought peace and freedom during my lifetime –ie since 1950:

Korea? Vietnam? Cambodia? Laos? Yemen? Lebanon? Iraq? Iran? Guatemala? El Salvador? Haiti? Afghanistan? Somalia?

Also — consider the insane and counterproductive War on Drugs. Many of us know people who got addicted to some substance or other. We also know that two of the most lethal and addictive drugs out there are tobacco/nicotine and ethyl alcohol (aka liquor, beer, wine, etc). (Killed my parents and at least 1 grandparent, maybe more.)

But if we know someone who has a problem with booze, we try to get them help.

We no longer arrest people for selling wine and beer. Heck, you can buy them in the supermarket!

And we are making it harder to smoke cigarettes, which is a good thing. We probably should the heads of Big Tobacco because know how roughly how many peoples lives were cut short by smoking.

But what about illegal drugs and folks like Rush Limbaugh who get so addicted to synthetic Opioids that they pay multiple doctors for prescriptions out the wazzoo?

Not even close. “Tobacco, alcohol killed 120 times more Americans than all other drugs combined in 2013”

If you’ve ever been in a hospital, you know that the opioid/opiates family of drugs can both very beneficial as short-term pain-killers. You may also know that if you use them for chronic pain, it’s not so wonderful. They tend to become addictive and burden their users with horrible side effects that make life a nightmare.

And then there is marijuana — which nobody has ever died from an overdose in recorded history. And is a pretty fine pain palliative and antidepressant and tonic — at least in older people.

Or so I hear. (What would I know?)

There a number of other categories of illegal substances I won’t discuss other than to say that in general, our draconian and totally-unevenly-enforced drug arrest and incarceration policies, which continue even now, even here in Washington, DC, are nuts. Yes, you can get a medical marijuana card here, and giving away weed to a friend is legal, but police continue to arrest folks for smoking a joint in public at a rate TRIPLE that before legalization!?!?!!

We also know that blacks and whites pretty much use illegal drugs at the same rate all over the nation. However, as Michelle Alexander and others have pointed out, virtually the only ones who end up getting arrested AND really truly entered into the INJUSTICE system are blacks and Latinos. The others are advised not to do that again.

So we have an enormous fraction of black and brown youth who have lost the right to vote, to go to college, to take out a loan, or get a decent job, just for a joint or a bag of weed? Or a pill of some sort? Or have their car or house legally taken because someone left a marijuana pipe in it?

What kind of nutty society does such a thing?

Oh yeah.

Ours.

And back to politics: that get tough criminalization if black and brown youth started a long time ago — I bet that research will show that during Prohibition (1922-1932, +\_) blacks were charged with alcohol violations much more frequently than whites. Having read a great book on the economics of the Jim Crow era, I am sure that one way for a corrupt, racist southern sheriff, or policeman or private hustler was to find a black person who had a few drinks in him or her, and fine him/her an amount they couldn’t pay for the crime of being drunk. Then they cop takes the prisoner in front of a judge, who then sells him/her to a mine or plantation or factory owner to work, for free, with no rights, for 6 months, a year, or until they died.

Sick, sick, sick.

This has been known officially since the mid-thirties. FDR, whatever his leadership skills may have been in fighting Nazis and other Fascists in World War 2, was given a report about the Jim Crow slave labor camps, and had the ONLY COPY DESTROYED because it would interfere with his alliance with southern racist politician leaders of the Democratic Party. the Ainslinger demonization of Marihuana went on from 1930-37, under both presidents Hoover and FDR.

Nixon and Reagan famously ramped up the War on Drugs, but if you look at the graphs of prison population over time, the accelerated rise under the Clinton Administration is just amazing. Go look (1992-2000)

And while Obama said on the campaign trail that he was going to stop all sorts of unwarranted foreign interventions, the foreign war record shows otherwise. In addition, deportations were higher than ever, and his administration engaged in a two-term assault on public education in general and school teachers in general, much like Betsy DeVos does under the current Administration. And the total prison population didn’t shrink much. And while many of us have family members or friends who went bankrupt and lost almost everything during the last two Big Crashes brought on by corporate greed and dishonesty, I think I can count on one hand the number of corporate fraudsters who went to jail behind that. While the banks and corporations were bailed out or bought up for pennies on the buck by people like Wilbur Ross, whom you should look up. The corporate heads, past and present, did amazingly well. The workers, not so much.

So yes, the past many American presidencies have helped the wealthy at the expense of the rest of us. But the huge inequality gap in the US– the largest in the advanced world, and which started climbing seriously under Reagan, continued to rise under Clinton, both Bushes, and Obama. anybody who thinks Any politician I’ve named will help, is seriously deceived. Especially not the mess of grifters in office right now.

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Published in: on October 30, 2017 at 11:18 pm  Leave a Comment  

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