Articles about the Trump presidency. Click the title to read the full article.
What does a Trump presidency mean? Fascism. Racism. Women’s Rights. Health. Environment. Climate Change. War with Russia, China, North Korea. Nuclear War. As the Trump presidency unfolds, articles and analysis about America under a Trump regime.
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Early Tuesday, President Trump signed an executive order he says instructs federal agencies to “aggressively promote and use American-made goods.” The order also directs those agencies to begin reviewing the much maligned H1-B visa program that allows U.S. companies to hire highly skilled foreign workers.
CNN’s Jack Tapper opened Tuesday’s episode of his show The Lead with a scathing rebuttal of the order, asking his audience, “So wait, does that mean he wants me to stop buying Trump products?”
From currency manipulation to NATO to Syria, Trump is flexible.
President Donald Trump has reversed himself on at least six major issues this week, pulling back on long-held promises supported by his base.
Four of these reversals alone came in an interview with The Wall Street Journal published Wednesday:
Trump said the Chinese are “not currency manipulators.” Just last week, he said they were “world champions” of currency manipulation, and he pledged throughout his campaign to label China a currency manipulator on his first day in office. He tweeted in 2012 that President Barack Obama’s failure to call China a currency manipulator “helped China steal even more jobs and money from us.”
Trump said, “I do like a low interest-rate policy.” During his campaign, he excoriated the Federal Reserve for keeping rates low, and said in 2011 that the policy would lead to hyperinflation.
Trump said he was open to the idea of reappointing Janet Yellen to head the Federal Reserve. On the campaign trail, he said he would “most likely” replace her. “I like her, I respect her,” Trump told the Journal at the time.
Trump said he supported the Export-Import Bank, noting that small companies are “really helped” by the institution. During the campaign, he said the bank was unnecessary.
What does the culture of cruelty look like under a neo-fascist regime?
First, language is emptied of any sense of ethics and compassion.
Second, a survival of the fittest discourse provides a breeding ground for racial and social sorting.
Third, references to justice are viewed as treasonous or, as at the present moment, labelled dismissively as “fake news.”
Fourth, the discourse of disposability extends to an increasing number of groups.
Fifth, ignorance becomes militarized, enforced not through an appeal to reason but through the use of the language of humiliation and eventually through the machinery of force.
Sixth, any form of dependency is viewed as a form of weakness, and becomes a referent and eventually a basis for social cleansing. That is, any form of solidarity not based on market-driven values is subject to derision and potential punishment.
Seventh, the language of borders and walls replaces the discourse of bridges and compassion.
Eighth, violence becomes the most important method for addressing social problems and mediating all relationships, hence, the increasing criminalization of a wide range of behaviours in the United States.
Ninth, the word democracy disappears from officially mandated state language.
Tenth, the critical media is gradually defamed and eventually outlawed.
Eleventh, all forms of critical education present in theory, method, and institutionally are destroyed.
Twelfth, shared fears replace shared responsibilities and everyone is reduced to the status of a potential terrorist, watched constantly and humiliated through body searches at border crossings.
Thirteenth, all vestiges of the welfare state disappear and millions are subject to fending for themselves.
Fourteenth, massive inequalities in power, wealth, and income will generate a host of Reality TV shows celebrating the financial elite.
Underlying this project is one of the most powerfully oppressive ideologies of neoliberal neo-fascism. That is, the only unit of agency and analysis that matters is the isolated individual. Shared trust and visions of economic equality and political justice give way to individual terrors and self-blame reinforced by the neoliberal notion that people are solely responsible for their political, economic, and social misfortunes. Consequently, a hardening of the culture is buttressed by the force of state sanctioned cultural apparatuses that enshrine privatization in the discourse of self-reliance, unchecked self-interest, untrammeled individualism, and deep distrust of anything remotely called the common good. Freedom of choice becomes code for defining responsibility solely as an individual task, reinforced by a shameful appeal to character.
Liberal critics argue that choice absent the notion of constraints feeds Ayn Rand’s culture of rabid individualism and unchecked greed. What they miss in this neo-fascist moment is that the systemic evil, cruelty, and moral irresponsibility at the heart of neoliberalism makes Ayn Rand’s lunacy look tame. Rand’s world has been surpassed by a ruling class of financial elites that embody not the old style greed of Gordon Gekko in the film Wall Street, but the psychopathic personality of Patrick Bateman in American Psycho.
The notion that saving money by reducing the taxes of the rich justifies eliminating health care for 24 million people is just one example of how this culture of cruelty and hardening of the culture will play out.
Dark Times are truly upon us. There will be an acceleration of acts of violence under the Trump administration and the conditions for eliminating this new stage of state violence will mean not only understanding the roots of neo-fascism in the United States, but also eliminating the economic, political, and cultural forces that produced it.
There is more at work here than getting rid of Trump, there is a need to eliminate a system in which democracy is equated with capitalism, a system driven almost exclusively by financial interests, and beholden to two political parties that are hard wired into neoliberal savagery.
President Trump on Tuesday took the most significant step yet in obliterating his predecessor’s environmental record, instructing federal regulators to rewrite key rules curbing U.S. carbon emissions.
The sweeping executive order — which the president signed with great fanfare in the Environmental Protection Agency’s Map Room — also seeks to lift a moratorium on federal coal leasing and remove the requirement that federal officials consider the impact of climate change when making decisions.
The Washington Post
Trump is embarking on an orgy of cruelty for absolutely no reason. This is morally repugnant.
RobertReich.org Truthdig March 19, 2017 Rise Up Times March 23, 2017
Trump’s own defense secretary has warned that this blind defense of Israel harms U.S. security.
Glenn Greenwald The Intercept March 18, 2017
Revesz writes: “Noam Chomsky has warned the Donald Trump-fuelled rally in capital markets is coming to a close and another financial crash is on the horizon.”
Rachael Revesz The Independent Reader Supported News March 15, 2017
“I think that the Christian right is a far more dangerous movement than the alt-right,” says Truthdig columnist Chris Hedges.
The Empire Files February 28, 2017
The U.S.-Mexico border in Nogales, Ariz. (Flickr / CC 2.0)
As the Trump administration continues its mass deportations apace, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is considering ramping up anti-immigration policies even further with a new rule that would separate mothers from their children at the U.S.-Mexico border.
Trump’s Proposed Increase in U.S. Defense Spending Would Be 80 Percent of Russia’s Entire Military Budget
The proposed $54 billion increase is roughly the size of the entire annual military budget of the United Kingdom, the fifth-largest spending country.
Alex Emmons The Intercept February 27, 2017
By Ali Abunimah for Electronic Antifada – US President Donald Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu held a joint press conference at the White House on Wednesday morning, before going into their much-anticipated bilateral meeting. Asked about whether the US was still wedded to a two-state solution, Trump broke with longstanding orthodoxy. “I am looking at two states or one state, and I like the one that both parties like,” the president said. On settlements, Trump reaffirmed to Netanyahu, “I’d like to see you hold back on settlements for a little bit.” Advocates of a two-state solution, including the previous US administration and European governments, see it as the only way to rescue Israel as a racist state that ensures its Jewish demographic majority through a battery of racist laws – a situation they refer to as “peace.” -more-
Popular Resistance February 22, 2017
Never popular in the first place, domestic counterextremism programs are now likely to become much more aggressive and bellicose.
Noam Chomsky on President Donald Trump
Published on Jan 26, 2017
Professor Noam Chomsky gave UNU-GCM’s 2016 Annual Guest Lecture on Saturday, November 5th in Barcelona. He delivered the following lecture entitled “Crises of Immigration”.
Pope Francis captured the essence of the “immigration crisis” in simple words: “Migrants are not a danger — they are in danger.” Sometimes, however, such crises are objectively real: in Lebanon, for example, where some 40% of the population are refugees. There have also been immigration crises of extreme objective severity: notoriously, for the native populations in settler-colonial societies. Sometimes immigration crises are culturally and morally real: in the rich and powerful countries, where the shocking reaction to refugees is a profound moral crisis, a political crisis as well, particularly in those countries with a large share of responsibility for creating the refugee crisis – and who have been creating a crisis that will soon be of colossal proportions unless they take drastic actions to curb the destruction of an environment that can sustain organized human life.
You can download text version of lecture here – https://i.unu.edu/media/gcm.unu.edu/p…
Up Front January 26, 2017
Noam Chomsky – How to Deal with the Trump Presidency
Democracy Now! January 16, 2017
After Donald Trump campaigned for the presidency on the promise to repeal and replace Obamacare with “something terrific,” his administration has just released a set of tweaks to the health care law—and those tweaks all favor the insurance industry over ordinary Americans.
The Affordable Care Act (ACA), which the GOP gleefully dubbed Obamacare, is clearly not good enough to serve all Americans well. But it is such a major improvement over the industry-dominated status quo of eight years ago that, as Nicholas Kristof of The New York Times succinctly wrote, “It is both unpopular and saves lives.”
Having perhaps realized that many of his own supporters rely heavily on the ACA, Trump has postponed repealing it and instead has made changes that “insurers have long pushed for,” according to The Hill. These include cutting the enrollment period in half in order to “cut down on sick people gaming the system,” whatever that means.
By Sonali Kolhatkar Truthout February 16, 2017
Leaked Trump Presidential Memo Would Free U.S. Companies to Buy Conflict Minerals From Central African Warlords
THE LEAKED DRAFT of a presidential memorandum Donald Trump is expected to sign within days suspends a 2010 rule that discouraged American companies from funding conflict and human rights abuses in the Democratic Republic of Congo through their purchase of “conflict minerals.”
By Lee Fang The Intercept February 8, 2017
President Donald Trump claims to be focused on providing “jobs for all Americans,” but — in another example of his reliance on “alternative facts” — he has emphasized the fossil-fuel sector as the likeliest site to create those jobs. He is clearly not paying attention to the recently released figures from the US Department of Energy that show soaring jobs growth in the US renewable energy sector. Read more…
By Linda Pentz Gunter, Truthout | Op-Ed February 5, 2017
For two months now, Donald Trump has appeared unable to accept the verdict of November’s election: that he is more popular than many of us wanted to believe, but less popular than Hillary Clinton.
As a result of this fixation, he is now promising “a major investigation” into the election that made him president, putting the full weight of the federal government behind his quest to prove that at least three million ballots were cast against him by “those registered to vote in two states, those who are illegal and even, those registered to vote who are dead.”
In an interview with David Muir of ABC News broadcast on Wednesday night, Trump tried to suggest that a 2012 Pew study on problems with people being registered in two states, or the voter rolls not being updated as soon as people die, was proof that illegal voting was taking place.
By Robert Mackey The Intercept January 25, 2017
Photo: Delil Souleiman/AFP/Getty Images
The draft text of the order was leaked to the Huffington Post and Los Angeles Times. Titled “Protecting the Nation from Terrorist Attacks by Foreign Nationals,” it would suspend the issuance of visas for at least 30 days to most people in the seven countries while the administration revamps its vetting procedures. Most citizens of foreign countries must first obtain a visa before being allowed to enter the United States.
“In order to protect Americans, we must ensure that those admitted to this country do not bear hostile attitudes toward our country and its founding principles,” the draft reads, justifying this blanket prohibition.
The draft relies on Division O, Title II, Section 203 of the 2016 Consolidated Appropriations Act, which lays out security-related exemptions to the visa waiver program, to derive that list of seven countries. In the 2016 law, Iraq and Syria are explicitly listed, Iran and Sudan are included as state sponsors of terrorism, and Libya, Somalia, and Yemen are in the “area of concern” as designated by the Department of Homeland Security.
What all seven countries also have in common is that the United States government has violently intervened in them. The U.S. is currently bombing — or has bombed in the recent past — six of them. The U.S. has not bombed Iran, but has a long history of intervention including a recent cyberattack.
It’s like a twisted version of the you-break-it-you-buy-it Pottery Barn rule: If we bomb a country or help destabilize its society, we will then ban its citizens from being able to seek refuge in the United States.
Connecticut Democratic Sen. Chris Murphy explained this irony in a tweet Wednesday morning:
No biggie, the New York Times assures us.
Donald Trump’s orders to “revive” the Keystone and Dakota Access pipeline projects, whose progress had been slowed by the Obama administration, are much ado about nothing, the New York Times (1/24/17) reported: “The pipelines were more about symbol than substance but generated enormous passion on both sides of the debate,” wrote the Times‘ Peter Baker and Coral Davenport.
Please write to the New York Times and ask them to stop using oil industry consultants as experts on whether Donald Trump’s pro-oil industry moves will be bad for the environment.
Fair January 25, 2017
Josh Dawsey, Politico
Dawsey writes: “The White House is installing senior aides atop major federal agencies to shadow the administration’s Cabinet secretaries, creating a direct line with loyalists who can monitor and shape White House goals across the federal bureaucracy.”
Reader Supported News January 25, 2017
Andrew Restuccia, Alex Guillén and Nancy Cook, Politico
Excerpt: “Federal agencies are clamping down on public information and social media in the early days of Donald Trump’s presidency, limiting employees’ ability to issue news releases, tweet, make policy pronouncements or otherwise communicate with the outside world, according to memos and sources from multiple agencies.”
Reader Supported News January 25, 2017
Through a statement, the US government released some of the measures that President Donald Trump will implement in immigration matters, such as the deportation of migrants who arrive in the United States illegally and have a legal Violent crimes. The document also reiterates the plan to build a wall along the border with Mexico to stop irregular migration, as well as violence and drug trafficking.
NOTE: The video accompanying this report is in Spanish. Available at the link.
TeleSUR January 21, 2017
Within hours of Donald Trump being inaugurated as the 45th president of the United States, the LGBT section of the White House’s website, and any references to climate change, were promptly removed.
Telesur January 22, 2017
We are now on the brink of a new form of government, undreamed of by Aristotle, who spoke of monarchy, aristocracy and democracy. We are headed to a psychopathocracy, which has something in common with the degraded form of classical regime types that Aristotle warned against (he thought monarchy can deteriorate into despotism, aristocracy into oligarchy, and democracy into demagoguery). Psychopathocracy is the rule of persons who lack a basic ability to empathize with others, to feel their pain or to feel guilty about harming them.
By Juan Cole / Informed Comment Truthdig January 11, 2017
Our hope and change candidate fell short time and time again. Obama cheerleaders who refused to make him accountable bear some responsibility
Eight years ago the world was on the brink of a grand celebration: the inauguration of a brilliant and charismatic black president of the United States of America. Today we are on the edge of an abyss: the installation of a mendacious and cathartic white president who will replace him.
By Cornel West The Guardian Popular Resistance January 10, 2017