Great Britain

The Coming Foreign Trip Disaster Of Donald Trump

Donald Trump is about to engage in a nine day foreign trip, which is bound to be a total disaster.

He will visit Saudi Arabia, the home of the Muslim holy sites of Mecca and Medina, and it will be delicate to do so, after his anti Muslim rhetoric and his attempted Muslim bans.

He will visit Israel, after having revealed Israeli intelligence information to the Russian Foreign Minister and Russian Ambassador to the United States in the Oval Office, and backing away from the idea of recognizing Jerusalem as the Israeli capital, and hinting that Israel must agree to concessions to the Palestinians, as he pursues “the art of the deal”. Also, he has refused to visit Masada, since he cannot have his helicopter go to the top of Masada, and is unwilling to take a cable car to the Mount. He also plans only 15 minutes at the Holocaust Memorial, Yad Vashem, which will alienate many Israelis and American Jews.

He will visit Vatican City and Pope Francis, and has been highly critical of the Pope, who has been dismissive of Trump’s rhetoric and his planned Mexico Wall.

He will be at the NATO summit in Belgium, having alarmed members at his on and off attitudes towards the significance of the alliance, and his pro Russian tendencies that are now being investigated, and could lead to his Presidency in flames.

He will also be be at the G-7 summit with our major economic partners–Great Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Canada and Japan, to be held in Sicily, Italy.

There will be plenty of opportunity for flubs, blunders, embarrassments, and Trump is not good at sitting through long sessions, gets bored easily, and is not willing to do the preparation, and reading, required to be knowledgeable and competent at international meetings with experienced and competent diplomats and foreign leaders.

Despite what Trump claims, he is NOT a good student, and clearly has a variation of Attention Deficit Disorder, along with Narcissistic Personality Disorder, and a likely possibility of Dementia or Alzheimers.

Trump is not up to this trip, which is too long and detailed, and cannot sleep in his own bed, and he is very intense about actually being seriously tested and challenged, as his Presidency deteriorates around him.

Barack Obama made his first foreign trip to Canada, and George W. Bush to Mexico, and after what is likely to be a disastrous trip, who knows if Trump will not just hole himself up in the White House, and scream and yell at his family and his aides, as he faces the end of his Presidency, as a total disgrace to the institution of the Presidency!

Twenty Nine “Developed” Nations Have Universal Health Care Coverage, But America Refuses To Come Into The 21st Century On Health Care!

Twenty nine “developed” nations in the world have Universal Health Care Coverage, including the following:

In Europe, 21 nations, including:

Great Britain
France
Germany
Italy
Spain
Portugal
Netherlands
Belgium
Luxembourg
Norway
Sweden
Finland
Denmark
Iceland
Switzerland
Austria
Hungary
Poland
Czech Republic
Greece
Slovenia

Also, Turkey and Israel in the Middle East have Universal Health Coverage.

Additionally, in Asia and the Pacific, there are 4 nations which have such coverage.

Japan
South Korea
Australia
New Zealand

Also, Canada in North America and Chile in South America have such coverage.

So why does the United States NOT have it?

The power of the health insurance companies lobby is one factor, and the refusal of the Republican Party and the conservative movement to be willing to accept that health care coverage and the protection of life beyond the pregnancy stage should be a guaranteed part of government policy, through a national health care program that covers all Americans, including even undocumented immigrants, are the reasons.

It is time for America to come into the 21st century, and decide that health care is not a privilege, but a basic human right!

Donald Trump’s Confused Mental State And Erratic Behavior: A Call For Mike Pence To Invoke The 25th Amendment, Section 4, NOW!

A national crisis has now arisen, as the behavior of Donald Trump in the past 72 hours demonstrates a confused mental state and erratic behavior.

His statements about Andrew Jackson, the Civil War, and Kim Jong Un of North Korea, and his general lack of knowledge and clarity on many domestic and foreign policy issues is extremely troubling and dangerous, particularly at a time when war with North Korea seems likely soon, and Trump has power over the nuclear codes.

Trump is undermining our relations with our allies, South Korea and Japan, which are directly affected by Trump’s changing stance on North Korea.

Trump is harming our relations with our border neighbors, Canada and Mexico.

Trump is confusing our major rivals, China and Russia, as well as Iran and ISIL (ISIS).

Trump is worrying our major allies in Europe (Great Britain, Germany, and France), and the whole NATO alliance system which has worked so well since 1949.

His own Republican Party cannot fathom his constantly changing views on health care, and his war on the federal government agencies.

Trump is an embarrassment to himself, with his total lack of knowledge and facts on history and science.

It is hard to imagine that we have had a more ignorant, clueless President than Donald Trump, with only possibly Warren G. Harding, and maybe George W. Bush competing for that dubious honor, but even they had some competent cabinet members and advisers, while it seems no one can stop Trump or control him in any fashion.

Yes, there is James Mattis and H R McMaster, and Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, but none of these people seem to be able to stop the reckless statements and weird behavior of Donald Trump.

It is time for Vice President Mike Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment, Section 4, in consultation with Congressional leaders, and become “Acting President”, until and when Donald Trump is pushed to resign or be forced out by impeachment, as incompetent and dangerous mentally to hold the office of President of the United States.

We cannot afford to have a nuclear war or some other kind of major war or other disaster, because government leaders are unwilling or courageous enough to take action on a timely basis!

Afghanistan War 2001-2017: $800 Billion, And 2,249 Americans Killed In A Quagmire That Is Unwinnable With Troops!

Fareed Zakaria spoke today on his CNN show about the Afghanistan War, which began on October 7, 2001, after the attack on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon on September 11, 2001.

We still have more than 8,000 troops engaged in a war that never has really ended, and it is the longest war in American history.

About $800 billion has been spent fighting the Taliban and Al Qaeda, but one cannot say that the war has been won, or will ever be won.

2,249 Americans have paid the ultimate price, in a quagmire that is unwinnable with troops, by any sensible measure of success.

The Soviet Union collapsed by 1991, partly due to the invasion of Afghanistan that went on from December 1979 February 1989.

The British tried to gain control of Afghanistan as part of the British Empire and failed, and the same for Alexander the Great in ancient times.

The loss of life and treasure is enough, and the US should stop their ground war in Afghanistan, and utilize drones as the only worthwhile investment, since the government of Afghanistan is hopelessly corrupt and unable to win the war, with no one really knowing what “winning” means in any case!

Donald Trump’s First Hundred Days: An F Grade Is Appropriate! Neil Gorsuch Is The Only “Accomplishment”!

This is the season for judgment on Donald Trump’s First Hundred Days, and being a professor of history and political science, as well as a lecturer, blogger, and published author of two books and many articles, the conclusion is clear.

Donald Trump gets a F for his performance, easily the least accomplished President in the first Hundred Days, with only one major accomplishment, the approval by the US Senate of his Supreme Court nominee, Neil Gorsuch.

But even that only came about because of the Republican decision to abandon the filibuster rule, therefore allowing Gorsuch to be confirmed without a 60 vote margin usually required before a final vote. And it seems likely that Gorsuch will, sadly, take America backwards, maybe more so than his predecessor, Antonin Scalia. Gorsuch will affect constitutional law in a detrimental way, based on his earlier record as a circuit court judge.

Otherwise, Trump has been all bluster and bullyism, who has made many promises, and none of them nearing fulfillment. Trump’s public opinion ratings are by far the lowest of any President since polling began, particularly at this early a stage of his time in office. He has never had the majority of the nation behind him, either in the election, during the transition, or now after a hundred days in office.

Donald Trump has done more to divide America in his first Hundred Days than any previous President, and he relishes conflict, rather than compromise and unity. He has pitted his white working class supporters against minorities, and yet he is showing lack of any concern about those who supported him. There are signs already of disillusionment and “buyer’s remorse” by many who voted for Trump.

He has promised a Mexico Wall which will not work, if it is ever built, and it will add many tens of billions to the national debt, and Mexico is not going to pay for the Wall, and one hopes Trump is not ready to start a war with our neighbor, as he has more than enough foreign policy problems as it is.

He saw his National Security Adviser, Michael Flynn, forced to resign in less than a month, and there has been total chaos, anarchy, and disarray with the White House staff, with the only good thing being the lessening of the influence of right wing radical Stephen Bannon, and the rise of the influence of Ivanka Trump, and her husband Jared Kushner. It is hoped that the couple will have a humanizing influence on Trump, which would be a good thing.

Meanwhile, the Russian connection to Trump is still being investigated, and could force him out of office at some point. But meanwhile, Trump has been saber rattling with North Korea and Iran, and has bombed Syria and Afghanistan, and continues to promise the total destruction of ISIL (ISIS). Relations with Russia, at least publicly, are deteriorating as well.

Trump has managed to create hostility and antagonism with such allies as Great Britain, France, Germany, Canada, and Australia, while seemingly cozying up to China over the Korean issue, and therefore changing his hostile tone in the campaign toward China.

Trump has shown his total ignorance of history and of science, and has declared war on the environment, on consumer rights, on labor rights, on women’s rights, on the Hispanic community, on African Americans, and on the health care system itself. He seems unconcerned about the loss of health care for 24 million Americans, and is just out to trash his predecessor, Barack Obama.

His appointments to his cabinet are atrocious, and we have the most terrifying Attorney General in all of American history in Jeff Sessions.

Trump has failed to gain any legislative accomplishments, and has, instead, used twice as many executive orders than his last two predecessors, but many are mean spirited and negative, undermining our values and the historical accomplishments of government in the past hundred years since Franklin D. Roosevelt, and including Republican Presidents, as well as Democrats.

Trump makes Richard Nixon look much better, and even the weaknesses and shortcomings of George W. Bush pale by comparison, as at least Bush was a decent human being, while wrong headed.

His anti immigrant, nativist stand is a stain on history, and the tragedy of deportation of children protected under executive order of Barack Obama adds to the horrors of families being torn apart.

His condemnation of the judiciary is detrimental to respect for the law, and his Muslim bans have been held up by courageous federal court judges.

Trump, in many ways, is the third President without a party, as there is a major split in the Republican Party, and there are many officeholders and conservative journalists and intellectuals who have major problems with him. John Tyler and Andrew Johnson are the earlier Presidents who had no party backing, but Trump was elected, while they were not, but Trump’s constant switches of position, and his lying, and insulting, undermine his Presidency dramatically.

Donald Trump comes across, ultimately, as the least likable President, if one judges by his character, his behavior, and his basic values.

Trump has no background, experience, knowledge, or ethical standard to be our President, and one must recall that 54 percent of those who voted, were against him, and he is the 7th lowest popular vote percentage winner of all Presidents, with the others–John Quincy Adams, Abraham Lincoln, Woodrow Wilson, Bill Clinton, Richard Nixon, and James Buchanan–all having two or three opponents who won electoral votes, while Trump only had Hillary Clinton as an electoral vote competitor. And Hillary won the biggest margin of popular votes of any losing candidate–2.85 million popular votes.

The nightmare of Donald Trump has just begun, and America is a loser for having, somehow, elected this egomaniac and narcissist, who is only out for his own glorification!

Donald Trump Has No Concern For Human Rights Or Civil Rights On 49th Anniversary Of Martin Luther King Jr Assassination

Donald Trump clearly has no concern for human rights overseas or civil rights at home.

He embraces all the authoritarian dictators in other nations, including Turkey, the Philippines, Egypt, and of course, Russia, while showing disrespect for the leaders of Great Britain, Germany, Canada, Mexico, and Australia.

He has nothing to say when his Attorney General, Jeff Sessions, moves to undermine reform of police departments in many American cities, to prevent the victimization of racial minorities, and instead claims crime is at an all time high, when it has been rapidly declining for many years.

Trump’s clear racism and white supremacy views are helping to cause growing tension among racial and religious minorities in America.

Decades of civil rights advancements are being summarily revoked, as we move back to the era of America before the civil rights movement made such great progress in the past fifty years.

Instead of uniting Americans, Donald Trump is moving to divide Americans by race, ethnicity, religion, gender and even sexual orientation.

And ironically, today is the 49th anniversary of the assassination of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, and one can be assured, that were he alive today, he would be promoting mass marches by Americans to protest the massive reversal of human and civil rights.

Bully, Narcissistic Donald Trump And Tough Talk Toward North Korea: Reckless Rhetoric Threatens Massive Asian War We Are Not Prepared For!

April has arrived, and Bully, Narcissistic Donald Trump has showed how reckless and dangerous he is, as he promotes tough talk toward North Korea, rhetoric that threatens a massive Asian war that America is not prepared for.

Trump has no understanding of foreign policy or world affairs, and is rapidly antagonizing our friends in the world, as well as our enemies.

He has been insulting toward Great Britain, Germany, Australia, Mexico, Canada, and even China, whose leader he is hosting this Thursday and Friday at his estate in Palm Beach, Florida.

How that meeting with China will work out is problematical, as China has already made clear that it will not be intimidated by Trump in any sense.

Trump wants China to crack down on Kim Jong Un of North Korea, as if they are able to do such, but do not expect much movement in this direction.

Trump has now said that if China does not cooperate with America, that we will settle the North Korean issue ourselves.

Really? Does Trump know what he is saying? Has he forgotten the Korean War, the massive invasion of North Korea into South Korea in June 1950, leading to a three year stalemate that caused the deaths of 33,000 Americans?

Does he know that an invasion now by North Korea would threaten the millions of Koreans in South Korea who live in Seoul, about a hour from the 38th parallel?

And what about the 28,000 US soldiers in South Korea, and the threat that Japan might be under danger of North Korean attack as well, whether conventional or nuclear?

Yes, we must solve the North Korean mess, and hopefully without a massive commitment of US troops, and without a nuclear attack ordered by Trump, because he looks at nuclear weapons as something he has no issue using, when it has never happened except at the end of the Second World War against Japan at Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

There is a sense of foreboding, that we are going to end up in a war that will drag on at heavy cost in finances and lives lost which are American and South Korean and Japanese, or a massive loss of life of civilians in North Korea with the use of nuclear weapons.

A Sobering Centennial: America Enters “The Great War” On April 6, 1917

It has been a century since America entered world affairs in a full sense, as on April 2, 1917, President Woodrow Wilson spoke to Congress and asked for a declaration of war against the Imperial German Empire, the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and the Ottoman Turkish Empire, and allied with Great Britain, France and Italy, in what was called “The Great War” at the time, and later World War I or the First World War.

The controversy over whether Wilson could have kept us out of the war has raged for a century, and his handling of the war effort, and the promotion of restriction on civil liberties during the war has remained highly contentious, and has caused Wilson to decline from Number 6 in the C Span Presidential poll of 2000, to Number 9 in the C Span Presidential poll of 2009, and now Number 11 in the C Span Presidential poll of 2017, all participated in by reputable scholars.

American sacrifices in war had been avoided, as America remained isolated from world affairs and foreign conflict until 1917, but in the last century, we have been in many major wars since then, including World War II, the Korean conflict, the Vietnam War, the Persian Gulf War, the Iraq War, and the Afghanistan War, along with many other foreign interventions in Latin America and the Middle East.

No one can be anything but sober to realize that when Congress voted for war on April 6, 1917, it transformed America in a permanent way, helping to create the concept of an American Empire, and America as a world leader since the end of World War II.

And now, with Donald Trump, the whole history of American foreign relations is in flux, and we face many challenges and crises in international affairs, and the hope is that we will avoid further military conflicts in the future, but hard to believe that is the scenario under Donald Trump.

PBS will have a six hour presentation on The American Experience on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday evenings April 10, 11, and 12 on America and The Great War, our nation’s engagement in the First World War, from many different perspectives, highly recommended to all who read this blog.

Donald Trump’s Deleterious Effect On Americans’ Physical Health, Mental State, And Sense Of Security

Donald Trump has been President for eight weeks, and it has been more than four months since he was elected the 45th President.

In those 56 days since he was inaugurated, Trump has created more tumult and disarray than any President in American history.

In so doing, he has had a deleterious effect on the physical health, mental state, and sense of security of tens of millions of Americans.

Cardiologists have reported that more of their patients have come in with heart palpitations and worse.

High blood pressure has become more common, and mental depression has worsened dramatically.

And the sense of security has deteriorated for African Americans, Latinos, Muslims, Jews, liberals, and the news media, as white supremacy, racism, antisemitism, and nativism have been encouraged by Donald Trump, Stephen Bannon, Stephen Miller, and others on the Trump staff.

Foreign nations have become unnerved about Trump’s weird and unstable behavior, and therefore, nations which are our closest allies–Great Britain, Germany, Australia, Canada, Japan–and other nations as well, have become concerned about the future foreign relations with Trump, as he is a revolutionary ready to destroy the international system.

War seems more likely, particularly with North Korea and Iran, as if we need another war to enrich corporations and the defense industry, and we see Trump promoting attacks on the environment, the safety net, and even the organization of the federal executive branch.

Donald Trump: The Bully In International Affairs, Threatening Wars, And Harming Relationships With Our Long Time Allies

Donald Trump, in less than two weeks, has become the bully in international affairs, threatening wars with Iran, Mexico, China, and ISIL, while harming long term relationships with allies, including Germany, Great Britain, Canada, and Australia.

His foreign policy approach is totally shocking, and he is rapidly becoming the number one international menace, only being close to two “friends”, it seems, to Russian President Vladimir Putin, and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Yes, I said Netanyanu, who has often acted like a bully in his dealings with Barack Obama, and is cozying up to Donald Trump, in a manner that insures probably collaboration in a major war against Iran, as well as the Palestinians, events which will, if they occur, undermine the image of Israel among both non Jews and Jews in America.

The Jewish community has always been divided over the right wing government of Israel, and the fact that extremist right wing evangelicals ally with the government of Israel should be seen as dangerous and a warning sign, as these extremist Christian groups believe in a holy war against 1.6 billion Muslims around the world, when the vast majority of Muslims are peaceful, and are not ideologues or terrorists.

When one hears Donald Trump talk about violence and bloodshed of some religious fanatics, which is certainly true, he conveniently forgets the history and the present situation of extremist Christians, who have a very condemnatory history over two millenniums against Jews, Muslims, native Americans, and colonial populations in Asia, Africa, and Latin America. One can also point out the mistreatment of women and gays by many extremist Christian religious groups.

Meanwhile, undermining our alliances with NATO and with a great ally such as Australia is a disaster in the making, which will leave us with no friends when a crisis arises.

There is only one answer—the quick, forced removal of Donald Trump from the Presidency, who could start a nuclear war on a whim!