Bearing Witness to Trump Week 32

August 27 – September 2, 2017

Trump starts the week off by removing limits that the Obama administration had placed on civic police departments militarizing their forces with used military equipment such as armored vehicles. Yes, let’s make our streets look like those of Mosul.

A massive hurricane, Harvey, strikes the Texas coast in one of the worst natural disasters ever to strike America. Millions of people are displaced and thousands are rescued in scenes eerily similar to Hurricane Katrina that occurred 12 years to the date. Except that is it not purely a natural disaster. Flooding and damage was worse that it should have been by building in flood plains, the lack of zoning, rampant unchecked growth that sprawled into water absorbing wetlands, and the head in the sand denial that the climate was changing with more extreme weather events ever more likely. How ironic that this occurs the week after the Trump administration had overturned Obama-era rules requiring that new infrastructure acknowledge the risks of climate change in their planning. And how sad that the working poor of the metro area of Houston, where so many immigrants reside legally or not, take the blunt of the harm from Harvey as they have recently from Donald.

Trump and Melania visit Texas, looking more like they stepped out of a country club for another campaign rally than ready to help and show compassion for the victims.  During their visit to the Texas coast the closest they get to hugging a Texan in need is when Trump hugs the Texas flag. It reminds me of the campaign when Democrats and many Republicans alike would go into the crowds to be with their people, while King Trump remained on stage above it all protected from the masses he proclaims he alone can save.

North Korea fires another missile, and Trump responds by firing off another tweet saying that talk is not the answer. How hypocritical coming from a man who does nothing but talk, and brag, and bully, and intimidate, and threaten, and blame and lie some more all by twitter. His State and Defense department chiefs walk it all back by saying there it still room for negotiation. What is scary is that Trump will eventually realize that the more he spews tirades on twitter the more people will discount and ignore him. And being ignored is what an ego-driven personality type like his hates the most, so he will do something crazy to demonstrate he is not all twitter rants.

Trump visits the heartland this week to promote tax reform. Actually, it is a tax cut for business and the rich in disguise of tax reform. He promises to slash the corporate tax rate to 15%, again playing upon the ignorance and gullibility of the public that does not know the effective tax rate is already about 15%. He promises that allowing global business to repatriate their foreign profits will mean more higher paying jobs for Americans. Another myth if not lie as has been proven in the past most businesses when they bring that loot back home use it to pay dividends and buy back stock that benefits the wealthy, not working Americans.  Of course Trump has no details, and does not see the irony that he does this the day after visiting the Texas coast where he promised billions of federal dollars to help the state rebuild.

It comes out in the press, that continues to do its job despite Trump’s ire, that Trump’s business lawyers were working to close deals in Russia during the 2016 election. Why are we no longer surprised or shocked by any of this? That normalization of bad behavior is what is most sad.

The week ends with the United Nations Human Rights Chief scolding an international leader for attacking his own free press that is vital to informed electorates and functioning democracies around the world. Of course that man is Trump and the country is now the USA; the newest banana republic to have a seat at the UN.

The above news has been taken from a number of international, national, regional, and local news media sources, both print and digital. Additional editorial opinions and comments about these news items are those of this author.

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