Tuesday, November 21, 2017

New Report Details '13 Terrible Things' About Senate GOP Tax Plan

"Americans for Tax Fairness warns that the bill gives most of the tax cuts to the richest 1%, makes 82 million middle-class families pay more in taxes, and endangers funding for public services"

President Trump has made 1,628 false or misleading claims over 298 days

"In the past 35 days, Trump has averaged an astonishing nine claims a day. The total now stands at 1,628 claims in 298 days, or an average of 5.5 claims a day. That puts the president on track to reach 1,999 claims by the end of his first year in office, though he obviously would easily exceed 2,000 if he maintained the pace..."

Trump Lies 9 Times a Day on Average Lately @alternet

Trump Lies 9 Times a Day on Average Lately @alternet:

"As of 3am Eastern Standard Time on Tuesday, Donald Trump has told 1,628 lies since taking office. We know this because the Washington Post has been diligently watching the numbers, keeping tabs on Trump’s huge fibs and falsehoods. Over the 298 days since his inauguration, Trump has told an average of 5.5 lies every single day of the week, Monday to Sunday. While he barely works weekdays and golfs every weekend, he apparently never takes a vacation from lying. Over the last 35 days, Trump has been even more dishonest than usual, upping his daily average to 9 lies every 24 hours. Thanks to the extra effort he’s put into misleading the country on a diversity of topics in recent weeks, he’s likely to reach “peak liar” status by January 20. “That puts the president on track to reach 1,999 claims by the end of his first year in office, though he obviously would easily exceed 2,000 if he maintained the pace of the past month,” the Post notes. Trump tends to lie about the same things over and over again. Near the top of his greatest hits are taxes. Trump falsely stated 40 times that GOP tax reform will yield the biggest tax cut in history, and 50 times erroneously suggested the U.S. is the highest taxed nation in the world. Fifty-five times Trump has boasted about achievements he played no part in, especially when it comes to saving or creating jobs. But Trump has lied about Obamacare more than any other topic, stating some 60 times “some variation of the statement that the Affordable Care Act is dying and ‘essentially dead,’” according to the Post. That is just not true. “Indeed, healthy enrollment for the coming year has surprised health-care experts,” according to the outlet. Trump’s lies are dangerous for reasons many have acknowledged. Obviously, the spread of misinformation and disinformation and the obliteration of truth may hold deep consequences for society and our already flawed democracy."

Trump's Pick for Health Secretary Led Company That Jacked Up Insulin Prices

"The Canadian research team that developed insulin as a breakthrough treatment for diabetes back in 1923 sold the patent for just $3, essentially giving its intellectual property away for the greater good. Nowadays, the companies that manufacture this crucial medicine raise the price on a regular basis in order to maximize profits. One of those companies is Eli Lilly and Co., where Alex Azar II, the man that President Trump has selected to run the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recently worked as a top executive. During Azar's eight-year tenure as president and vice president of Eli Lilly's operations in the United States, the pharmaceutical giant raised the price of Humalog, a fast-acting form of insulin, from $2,657 per year to $9,172. That's a 345 percent price increase for a drug that millions of patients depend on, according to Peter Maybarduk, the director of the Access to Medicines Program at the watchdog group Public Citizen. President Trump announced on Wednesday that he is nominating Azar to replace a disgraced Tom Price as health secretary"

Apple Writing Republican Tax Plan?

5 Times Republicans Admitted They Work for Rich Donors @alternet

5 Times Republicans Admitted They Work for Rich Donors @alternet:

"The threat of losing wealthy donors has some GOP lawmakers so off their game, they’ve started publicly admitting they work for the rich. Here are five times Republicans admitted they’re just trying to keep their rich donors happy."

Pay Attention to the Kansas Disaster: It's What Republicans Want for the Whole Country

"what happened in Kansas is precisely what the Republican Party has in mind for the country. This will necessarily including burying the evidence the way Brownback and his government have in Kansas. What happened there was a pure experiment in the supply-side, laissez-faire economics that are the primary foundation of respectable conservative crazy. They don’t work. They never will work. Their impact on the lives of ordinary people is inevitably and profoundly destructive."

We must learn from the failed tax experiment in Kansas

'Welfare for the Wealthy': 227 House Republicans Pass $1.5 Trillion Tax Cut for Corporations and the Rich

"By a vote of 227-205, House Republicans on Thursday passed a tax bill that would permanently cut taxes for massive corporations, reward the extremely wealthy by eliminating the estate tax, trigger billions of dollars in automatic cuts to Medicare, and raise taxes on millions of middle- and working-class families."

The Senate Tax Bill Threatens Access to Health Care

"This week, Senate Republicans announced that they plan to pay for their tax cuts for large corporations and millionaires not only by imposing tax increases on the middle-class but also by undermining people’s access to health care."

The failure of trickle-down economics

Russia’s social media meddling in the United States was just the tip of the iceberg

"From Brexit to Barcelona to bloodshed in South Sudan, the perils of fake social media accounts spread far beyond American borders."

The GOP's Tax Cut Bonanza Is a Major Attack on Medicare @alternet

The GOP's Tax Cut Bonanza Is a Major Attack on Medicare @alternet:

"To be clear: If the tax bill passes the Senate and is signed into law by Trump, nothing more needs to be done to cut Medicare. If the House and Senate do nothing, the cuts take effect immediately after the end of the congressional session and get bigger every passing year. A vote for this tax bill is a vote to cut Medicare."

Monday, November 20, 2017

VICIOUS Republican Tax Plan Passes House

Senate Judiciary Committee: Kushner forwarded emails about a 'Russian backdoor overture and dinner invite'

"President Donald Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser, Jared Kushner, forwarded emails about a "Russian backdoor overture and dinner invite" to Trump campaign officials and failed to produce those emails to the Senate Judiciary Committee, two senators on the committee said in a letter to Kushner's lawyer on Thursday. Kushner also failed to produce emails he was copied on involving communication with the anti-secrecy agency WikiLeaks and with a Belarusian-American businessman named Sergei Millian, the senators said. Millian most recently headed a group called the Russian-American Chamber of Commerce."

Robert Mueller Has Subpoenaed More Than a Dozen Trump Officials for Documents Related to Russia: Report @alternet

Robert Mueller Has Subpoenaed More Than a Dozen Trump Officials for Documents Related to Russia: Report @alternet:

"The Wall Street Journal reports that a source has confirmed investigators under special counsel Robert Mueller subpoenaed the 2016 campaign of then-candidate Donald Trump for documents containing Russia-related keywords. More than a dozen individuals are included among those compelled to turn over documents."

CEO's Admit They'll Pocket Their Tax Breaks, Not Hire

'Any Russians In The Room?': Jeff Sessions Cracks Jokes About His Perjury

'Any Russians In The Room?': Jeff Sessions Cracks Jokes About His Perjury:

"Jefferson Beauregard Sessions, III paid a visit to the Federalist Society meeting, where he opened his remarks by joking around about his own perjury."

The Trump–Russia story is a story about money laundering in real estate. Full stop.

"That Trump’s campaign team agreed to look into the Magnitsky Act isn’t something they’re doing for Russia. It’s something that they’re doing for themselves. They need to keep that pipeline open. To make sure that the oligarchs banned from US transactions under sanctions are free to insert their dollars … right into Trump’s bank account. Sure, the Russians helped Donald Trump get elected. Sure, Trump’s campaign contacted Russia over and over to coordinate on ways to attack Hillary Clinton and the best use of Russian trolls and ad dollars. Sure, Russia made it clear that the payoff for their help would come in the form of reduced sanctions. That’s the sideshow. The real show? It’s billions of dollars moving from oligarchs in Russia, to banks in Cyprus, to real estate in New York. Putin wants that flow open. Trump wants his cut. The White House is a tool to make that happen."

Lawrence: GOP Tax Bill Is Biggest Transfer To The Wealthy In U.S. History

Blaming Lack of Sleep, Sessions Says He Forgot About Meeting With George Papadopoulos

"Testifying before the House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday, Attorney General Jeff Sessions claimed he had forgotten about a March 2016 meeting with Trump campaign adviser George Papadopoulos when he previously insisted under oath that he was "not aware" that anyone involved with Trump's presidential run had any connections with the Russian government."

Trump White House officials panicking as Mueller ‘works through the staff like Pac-Man’: report

Trump White House officials panicking as Mueller ‘works through the staff like Pac-Man’: report

"Top White House aides are trying to project calm in the West Wing, even as special counsel Robert Mueller draws closer to the Oval Office with his investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and collusion with Donald Trump’s campaign."

Republican Tax Bill Would Create American Dynasties

Rep. Ted Lieu Gets Under Jeff Sessions' Skin During House Judiciary Committee Hearing @alternet

Rep. Ted Lieu Gets Under Jeff Sessions' Skin During House Judiciary Committee Hearing @alternet: "U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions may either have the worst memory in recorded history or be a total liar. That's the point Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA) decided to demonstrate during Sessions' hearing."

Mike Pence Keeps Getting Caught In A Web Of Deception

"It is far from the first time Pence appears to have been caught in a web of deception."

Trump campaign was a chaotic, bumbling mess, except for its consistency on one issue: Russia

"First of all, just because Trump's campaign was stacked with a battalion of rogue "nincompoops" doesn't relieve them of culpability. Whether or not a conspiracy succeeds is inconsequential, it's the intent of the actions they took that matter. And where intent is concerned, what's fascinating is how Russia was the glue that held the whole blundering enterprise together. Regardless of how muddled the campaign hierarchy was, it was riddled with attempts to connect with Russian operatives."

Jared Kushner REALLY Appears To Be Guilty Of Obstruction Of Justice

Ex-Watergate prosecutor: ‘Jeff Sessions has made it a lot easier’ for special counsel Mueller to find him guilty of perjury

Ex-Watergate prosecutor: ‘Jeff Sessions has made it a lot easier’ for special counsel Mueller to find him guilty of perjury

"Ackerman outlined the three times Sessions lied in sworn testimony: first, when he falsely claimed at his confirmation hearing that he “didn’t recall” meeting with any Russians (he met thrice with Russian ambassador Sergei Kislyak); second, when he sent a letter to Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) claiming outright that he never had contact with Russian officials; and third, when he “denied any knowledge about any [Trump campaign] surrogates having any contact with Russia.” The latter was proven to be a lie after it was revealed that former campaign aides George Papadopoulos and Carter Page told Sessions about their contacts with Russians."

How do I love thee? Newsweek has counted the ways that Trump loves Putin so you don't have to

"a history of Trump's admiration for the Russian president."

Fox Host Debunks Uranium One Conspiracy Theory, So Fox Viewers Want Him Fired

Mike Pence Can't Keep His Lies Straight, and It's Starting to Catch Up with Him @alternet

Mike Pence Can't Keep His Lies Straight, and It's Starting to Catch Up with Him @alternet:

"Whether the vice president has any knowledge of or involvement in collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian agents remains unknown, but he is certainly up to his eyeballs in falsehoods and deceptions on the matter. Unfortunately for Pence, appearing to be clueless and incompetent is not a defense that will protect him from Robert Mueller or other investigators."

WATCH: Jeff Sessions gets testy as he’s grilled by Sheila Lee over Russia contacts

WATCH: Jeff Sessions gets testy as he’s grilled by Sheila Lee over Russia contacts

"Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-NY) grilled Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Tuesday about his failure to recall Trump campaign operatives telling them about their efforts to meet with Russian government officials during the 2016 presidential campaign."

President Trump Openness To Corruption Mars US Standing

The Wikileaks/Trump Jr. exchange shows a conspiracy ... and that Wikileaks is an absolute fraud

"The biggest thing to be learned from the Trump Jr./Wikileaks exchange is just how slimy both sides were. How little concerned they were with the idea of actual honesty or openness. How ready they were to conspire together to give the impression of honesty, while privately snickering at the gullible. Like when Wikileaks proposed they publish some of Trump’s tax information … If we publish them it will dramatically improve the perception of our impartiality. This is the real kicker. That means that the vast amount of stuff that we are publishing about Clinton will have a much higher impact, because it won’t be perceived as coming from a “pro-Trump” “pro-Russia” source, which the Clinton campaign is constantly slandering us with. This statement … is amazing. If Trump Jr. will help sneak Wikileaks some information, they can use it to cover up the fact that they’re helping him … which would really stick it to those bastards who say Wikileaks is helping him. And hey, isn’t it also amazing that the only website that Wikileaks located for them, and “guessed the password” was the one about Putin?"

The Secret Correspondence Between Donald Trump Jr. and WikiLeaks

"The transparency organization asked the president’s son for his cooperation—in sharing its work, in contesting the results of the election, and in arranging for Julian Assange to be Australia’s ambassador to the United States."

Jared Kushner Didn't Disclose He Was Contact By A Vladimir Putin Ally

Wikileaks Wanted To Publish Trump’s Tax Returns To Hide Collusion With Trump And Russia

"The Wikileaks/Trump/Russia conspiracy was so intent on fooling US voters that Wikileaks asked Trump Jr. if they could publish one of Trump’s tax returns so that their attacks on Hillary Clinton would have more impact. Here is the request via The Atlantic: “Hey Don. We have an unusual idea,” Wikileaks wrote on October 21, 2016. “Leak us one or more of your father’s tax returns.” Wikileaks then laid out three reasons why this would benefit both the Trumps and Wikileaks. One, The New York Times had already published a fragment of Trump’s tax returns on October 1; two, the rest could come out any time “through the most biased source (e.g. NYT/MSNBC).” It is the third reason, though, Wikileaks wrote, that “is the real kicker.” “If we publish them it will dramatically improve the perception of our impartiality,” Wikileaks explained. “That means that the vast amount of stuff that we are publishing on Clinton will have much higher impact, because it won’t be perceived as coming from a ‘pro-Trump’ ‘pro-Russia’ source.” Anybody who ever believed Wikileaks or thought that they were only responsible for dumping the emails was played for a sucker. Assange and Wikileaks were working with the Russians and the Trump campaign to help Trump win."

Former intelligence chiefs blast Trump’s ‘reprehensible’ attacks, naive embrace of Putin

"Two of the country’s highest ranking former intelligence officials took President Donald Trump to task on Sunday for his continued refusal to acknowledge Russian interference in the 2016 presidential elections, a stance that they say puts the United States in danger."

Senate Asks Jared Kushner For Info About 'Russian Backdoor Overture'

Everybody owns Trump: But with Vladimir Putin, it’s special

"There is one exception to this pattern, however. Trump's relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin is different. While Trump is just as unctuous in Putin's presence as he is with other foreign leaders, he's equally submissive from a distance. Indeed, he hasn't said a harsh word about Putin or Russia for years and goes out of his way to defend the Moscow strongman. This trip was no exception."

Mueller looking into Michael Flynn's meeting with pro-Russia Congressman Dana Rohrabacher

"There’s no firmer supporter of Vladimir Putin than Dana Rohrabacher. That’s true whether you’re canvassing the United States House of Representatives, or the Russia Duma. And there’s no representative more deserving of being entangled in the Trump–Russia investigation."

Donald Trump Junior Exposed For Wikileaks Contacts

The GOP Has Just Been Caught in Perhaps Its Biggest Tax Lie @alternet

The GOP Has Just Been Caught in Perhaps Its Biggest Tax Lie @alternet:

"After repeatedly promising that all Americans would get a tax cut under their plan, Republicans have had to change their tune—or to, as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell did, admit that “I misspoke on that.” Just an innocent misspeaking, mind you, and not a calculated PR effort to sell tax cuts for corporations and the wealthy."

Robert Reich: The Trump Tax Plan Is Downright Unpatriotic @alternet

Robert Reich: The Trump Tax Plan Is Downright Unpatriotic @alternet:

"The reason Republicans give for enacting the plan is “supply-side” trickle-down nonsense. The real reason is payback to the GOP’s mega-donors. A few Republicans are starting to admit this. Last week, Gary Cohn, Trump’s lead economic advisor, conceded in an interviewthat “the most excited group out there are big CEOs, about our tax plan.” Republican Rep. Chris Collins admitted that “my donors are basically saying, ‘Get it done or don’t ever call me again.’” Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham warned that if Republicans failed to pass tax reform, “the financial contributions will stop.” Republican mega-donors view the tax payback as they do any other investment. When they bankrolled Trump and the GOP, they expected a good return."

Trump Breaks His Previous Record, Now Lies To The Public 5.5 Times PER DAY!

'There You Have It': McConnell Says He 'Misspoke' When He Promised No Tax Hike on Middle Class

"Following the release of a slew of analyses showing that the GOP tax plan would raise taxes on many middle class families—despite repeated promises to the contrary by the Trump administration and Republican lawmakers—Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) conceded in an interview with the New York Times Friday that he "misspoke" when he declared last week that "nobody in the middle class is going to get a tax increase"."

Ugly Stuff: GOP Tax and Budget Plans Will Destroy Finances of Average Americans With Sick Elders or Family Members With Disabilities @alternet

Ugly Stuff: GOP Tax and Budget Plans Will Destroy Finances of Average Americans With Sick Elders or Family Members With Disabilities @alternet:

"Tax breaks for the rich, while the GOP targets healthcare safety nets for society's most vulnerable."

Expert On Dictators: President Donald Trump On A Path Of Despotism

'Get It Done or Don't Call Me Again': GOP Admit Their Tax Plan Is All About Rich Donors

"It has everything to do with the affluent donors who bankroll GOP campaigns."

Ali Velshi Flattens GOP Tax Cut Claims: 'Do You Actually Believe In Trickle Down?'

Ali Velshi Flattens GOP Tax Cut Claims: 'Do You Actually Believe In Trickle Down?': Rep. Rodney Davis had that 'deer in the headlights' look as Ali Velshi laid down some actual facts about tax cuts for the rich.

GOP Follows String Of Failures With Tax Plan

The Super Wealthy Oxycontin Family Supports School Privatization With Tactics Similar to Those That Fueled the Opioid Epidemic @alternet

The Super Wealthy Oxycontin Family Supports School Privatization With Tactics Similar to Those That Fueled the Opioid Epidemic @alternet:

"OxyContin heir and Purdue Pharma director Jonathan Sackler is a major funder of charters and an extensive network of pro-charter advocacy groups. Figuring out who is funding the latest charter school-promoting front group often feels like a game of whack-a-mole. That's why reading Patrick Radden Keefe’s recent New Yorkerpiece, “The Family That Built an Empire of Pain,” made so much fall into place. Keefe writes, “Purdue and other pharmaceutical companies have long funded ostensibly neutral nonprofit groups that advocate for pain patients.” The same influence techniques Purdue used to promote painkillers are now being used by Jonathan Sackler to expand charter schools."

Senate GOP keeps endorsing Trump’s unqualified judicial nominees

"The American Bar Association evaluates the qualifications of judicial nominees, and in most instances, across multiple administrations, the ABA determines that the nominees are prepared to serve on the federal bench. In the Obama era, for example, literally none of the Democratic president’s nominees received a “not qualified” rating. The same is true of Bill Clinton’s nominees. Donald Trump, however, less than a year into his first term, has already sent four “not qualified” judicial nominees to the Senate."

The Trump Presidency: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO)

Senate confirms lobbyist with ‘astounding’ number of conflicts of interest to head EPA air office

"William Wehrum, an industry lawyer and lobbyist, has represented companies who regularly filed legal challenges to the Environmental Protection Agency’s clean air regulations. Nonetheless, President Donald Trump nominated him to head the office at the EPA responsible for ensuring Americans have clean air."

Republicans Using Populist Rhetoric to Sell Greed

"The “jobs” claim of the “tax cuts and jobs” act is based primarily on pouring so much money into corporations that they will create jobs, but Phillips points out that when corporations were given a tax holiday in 2004, similar to what Republicans are now proposing, “a subsequent study showed that companies that took the biggest advantage of that holiday actually were the ones that cut the most jobs because … having more access to capital simply means that they make more and bigger investments offshore.” Once in a while, Republicans will inadvertently admit that their bill is written for their rich friends. In a piece published Tuesday, New York Rep. Chris Collins told a Hill reporter, “My donors are basically saying, ‘Get it done or don’t ever call me again.’ ” As Fink from Patriotic Millionaires told me, “The only thing the Republicans really agree about is greed, and they’re trying to cut everybody in on their greed.” Recent polls show that Americans notice this greed and are not buying the populist rhetoric that is obscuring giveaways to the rich. Not only do most Americans think tax reform is not a high priority, they don’t believe that corporations will turn their extra cash into jobs. A majority of Americans think corporations should pay higher taxes. The GOP has tried in vain time and again over the course of this year to use their legislative power to deceive ordinary people. For the public good, may they fail yet again."

Vice President Mike Pence’s 3 Russia Defenses

Bernie Sanders Sounds The Alarm: Middle-Class Americans Will Foot The Bill For GOP Tax Scam

"In order to pay for the deficit-busting tax plan, the Vermont senator said GOP lawmakers will be taking aim at key programs, like Social Security and Medicare."

Here’s a rundown of the Trump donors keeping their money offshore

"The leaked papers show that a number of Trump’s biggest financial backers were the same billionaire globalists that Trump decried at rallies across the country — and that’s in addition to the tax-dodging globalists currently sitting in his cabinet. The leaks reveal that these men stashed away parts of their fortunes, valued in the tens of billions, to avoid public scrutiny. From there, they could funnel more than $60 million into super PACs supporting Trump’s presidency."

Trump Author: President Donald Trump Deeply Would Like To Be A Dictator

Republicans Say They’ve Got to Act on Tax Reform—or Donors Might Get Mad

"With donors going on the record describing the relationship as nakedly transactional, Collins and Graham’s frankness starts to make more sense."

Senator's basic science questions expose Trump's environmental advisor nominee to be a fraud

"None of this is surprising in that Trump’s administration has shown the kind of disdain for the planet usually only reserved for comically two-dimensional cartoon villains. But boy, does Trump and crew know how to pick truly unimpressive people!"

Republicans Try To Sneak Obamacare Repeal Into Tax Plan

The GOP Tax Plan Tells Us Everything About Who Matters In American Democracy

"The GOP tax plan is a simple political statement about who matters more in American democracy: the heirs to hedge-fund fortunes or everyone else in the country. Trump and the Republicans have chosen the dynasts."

White House’s Cohn touts ‘trickle-down’ benefits in GOP tax plan

"It’s worth appreciating, just as a matter of political rhetoric, that there are certain phrases that the right has learned to avoid. Advocates of privatizing public education, for example, steer clear of the word “vouchers,” for example, because they’re not popular – so they use pleasant sounding euphemisms such as “school choice” instead. Similarly, advocates of massive tax breaks for the wealthy and corporations tend to avoid references to “trickle-down” tax policies because most of the public is repulsed by the idea of giving more money to those at the very top and waiting for prosperity to eventually work its way to everyone else. And yet, Cohn, perhaps inadvertently, said what he actually believed, confirming what critics of the Republican plan have been saying all along. In the same CNBC interview, Cohn added, “It’s not our intention to give the wealthy a tax cut.” Harwood, familiar with reality, responded, “But they’re getting one.” The White House adviser added, “I don’t believe that we’ve set out to create a tax cut for the wealthy.” This might be one of the greatest quotes of the tax debate thus far. According to Gary Cohn, the Republican plan delivers massive tax benefits to millionaires and billionaires, but that’s not what he and the plan’s co-authors “set out” to do. Congratulations, wealthy Americans, Republicans are poised to give you enormous amounts of money – by accident."

Jeff Sessions: I Do Declare! I Don't Recall!

Lindsey Graham Latest Republican to Admit GOP Tax Plan Is All About Keeping 'Financial Contributions' of Donors Flowing

"Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) on Thursday became the latest Republican to admit the GOP is trying to ram through massive tax cuts for the rich to satisfy its wealthy donors, telling a journalist that if the party's tax push fails, "the financial contributions will stop"."