TAXES, TARIFFS & TRUMP
by Burt Prelutsky
IF YOU WANT TO COMMENT TO BURT PRELUTSKY ARTICLE, PLEASE MENTION MY NAME RUDY...   Contact Burt at burtprelutsky@icloud.com  

I don’t claim to be an economist. But having seen and heard from far too many of them ever since Trump rattled their cage by announcing tariffs on imported steel and aluminum, I really don’t think I’d care to be one.

I have no idea if the proposed tariffs will be good or bad for American workers and consumers, but I do know a few things: One, I believe Trump is convinced the tariffs will prove to be beneficial for the U.S. or he wouldn’t consider calling for them to be imposed. Two: I take comfort in knowing he’s being advised not just by his usual trustworthy gut, but by people like Larry Kudlow who prefer capitalism to all the other isms other there. Three: I know that the talking heads on TV whose hair goes up in flames the second the President says or does anything aren’t to be trusted. They hate him and they’re not too crazy about those who us who elected him. Every time they wring their hands over one of his agenda items, I have this overwhelming urge to wring their necks.

Perhaps most telling of all is that Trump’s critics are all agonizing over retaliation by Mexico, Canada and the EU, while ignoring the fact that his tariffs are in retaliation to those that have been leveled on our products for decades. If you didn’t know about that, it’s because until now we haven’t had a president who cared to mention that embarrassing fact, let alone do something about it.

For instance, the EU places a 10% tariff on American cars; we have had a 2% tariff on theirs.

The one thing that troubles me is that during his campaign, Trump gave us an earful about China’s currency manipulation and other sleazy trade practices, but now he seems to be carrying on a torrid bromance with President Xi that might even begin to trouble Melania if it goes on much longer.

I suppose Trump might be motivated by his hope that Xi will assist him in getting Kim Jong-un to denuclearize North Korea, but I wouldn’t pin my hopes on either of those schmucks bargaining in good faith. Shake hands with those two at your own risk; one will steal your cufflinks, the other will swipe your watch, while simultaneously stabbing you in the back.

As for our alleged allies in the EU, which could serve as shorthand for eunuch, if they decide, as has been rumored, to hitch their wagon to Russia, good luck with that.

Russia is, as it’s always been, a troublemaker on the world stage. But for all its evil intentions, Russia is a third world nation with a third world economy. So if Germany, France and the others decide to embrace the Russian bear rather than deal honestly with Trump, I can’t help thinking it will be like the passengers on the Titanic breathing a sigh of relief as they spot a rescue ship on the horizon, unaware that it’s the Lusitania.

⦿  We now know that the FBI was all over the Trump campaign like a soggy blanket, all because of alleged suspicions that members of his team were colluding with Russia. That’s the fairy tale that got Robert Mueller engaged as Special Counselor, turning him into a latter-day Cotton Mather on the alert for conservative witches.

The problem is that at the same time we are being told that Putin’s real mission was to destroy America’s faith in the democratic process. However, the FBI hasn’t shown the slightest bit of curiosity about the liar-Clinton campaign when everybody knows her people spent upwards of $10 million to finance a fraudulent dossier cooked up by the Russians and a former English spy.

⦿  California’s Attorney General Xavier Becerra has just banned state-funded travel to Oklahoma, adding it to a list that includes Alabama, Kansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee and Texas, states that, so far as California’s duly elected morons are concerned, discriminates against homosexuals and transgenders.

The exceptions to the rule are those state agents investigating crimes or tax disputes, although I can’t think of any other reason any of these meatheads would have for leaving the only insane asylum in America with a state charter.

The question looming in my brain is why any of the governors of those nine states should allow these idiots to get off the plane for any reason whatsoever. If they need an excuse that will stand up in court, I suggest they argue that every California official is a potential plague-carrier. I’d be happy to testify for the prosecution.

⦿  There aren’t too many things that can still shock me, but I was rocked back on my heels by a poll conducted by LifeWay, an evangelical research firm, that showed that just 58% of millennial evangelists, ages 18-34, had a more positive opinion of Israel than they had of the Palestinian Authority aka Hamas. That compared to the 76% of evangelicals who are 65 or older who favored Israel.

Frankly, even that number threw me for a curve.

In this increasingly Godless age, I might have expected that the younger generation had simply stopped identifying with the religion of their parents and grandparents, but I was blindsided by those results. It was the equivalent of hearing that 42% of young evangelicals and 24% of their elders thought more highly of the Nazis than they did of their Jewish victims.

⦿  According to Ben Rhodes, writing in his book, “The World as it Is,” reports that his former boss, Barack liar-nObama, was constantly being disappointed by the American people. After Donald Trump’s victory, liar-nObama said: “What if we were wrong in being so right? What if we were too good for these people? Maybe we pushed too far. Maybe people just want to fall back into their tribe.”

How obnoxious! What the man lacks in hubris, he more than makes up for in narcissism.

Coming from anyone, that statement would be intolerable. But coming from the megalomaniac who played identify politics every day for eight years, it’s mind-boggling.

This was a shmuck who fell back on his own tribe whether he was riding the black Chicago vote to the Illinois legislature or the black national vote all the way to the White House.

Who else but a tribesman would side with blacks every time and in every possible situation and even go so far as to claim that a punk like Trayvon Martin reminded him of the son he never had?

Coincidentally, Trayvon Martin also reminded me of the son Barack liar-nObama never had.

⦿  After I mentioned a riff by Jackie Mason in a recent article, one of my readers let me know that she remembered when you could see comics like Mason, Shecky Greene and Don Rickles, for the price of a drink in a Vegas lounge.

She closed with “I live a lot in memories.”

To which I replied: “Memoryland is a nice place to visit, though probably not the best place to live.”

That, in turn, reminded me that one of my favorite magazines is Reminisce. It is entirely devoted to anecdotes and photos shared by its subscribers. There are sections devoted to the recollections of military veterans; of people raised during the Depression, World War II and later; memories of visits to the farms of their grandparents; their favorite Thanksgivings and Christmases; how they met their spouses; their most embarrassing moments; their encounters, good and bad, with celebrities; a whole hodge-podge of lives that brings to mind the opening narration of the old TV series, “Naked City”: “There are eight million stories in the Naked City. This is one of them.”

The anecdotes bring back an America is that long gone, but, fortunately, not entirely forgotten.
IF YOU WANT TO COMMENT TO BURT PRELUTSKY ARTICLE, PLEASE MENTION MY NAME RUDY...   Contact Burt at burtprelutsky@icloud.com  

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LIGHTER SIDE

ALERT ALERT

Clinton Donor And Tax Cheat Tied To Russia

“Do as we say, not as we do.”

That seems to be the slogan for Hillary Clinton and her political allies, and it’s especially apt in light of new information about one of Clinton’s largest campaign donors.

While the left is still trying to attack President Trump and his family over unproven business dealings and largely debunked connections to Russia, a new report indicates that it was Hillary Clinton’s team who were doing those exact things.

“Fox News has learned that one of the top donors to the ‘Hillary Victory Fund’ (HVF) in 2016 was a Los Angeles-based attorney who is alleged to have misused company funds to create his own $22 million real estate portfolio,” that outlet reported on Thursday.

“He has also been considered by California to be one of the state’s biggest tax cheats, and allegedly has ties to the (Russian) Kremlin,” Fox continued.

The man’s name is Edgar Sargsyan. His deep pockets greatly benefited Clinton’s campaign, with contributions of at least $250,000 to the Hillary Victory Fund in 2016.

He was also in charge of an elite fundraising dinner to benefit Clinton, where donors paid $100,000 per couple just to attend the ritzy event. But in true Clinton fashion, the money apparently went missing.

Sargsyan is now “being sued by his former company for allegedly diverting those funds to start his own real estate company,” according to Fox.

Now, people are asking hard questions about Clinton’s buddy Sargsyan, including whether his contributions were part of a pay-to-play scheme and if he had shady connections to foreign governments.

“Nobody gave to the Hillary Victory Fund out of the goodness of their heart or some generalized desire to help 33 random state parties,” pointed out attorney Dan Backer from the Committee to Defend the President.

“They did so to buy access and curry influence — something the Clintons have been selling for nearly three decades in and out of government,” he continued.

Trying to buy political influence is sadly common, especially when it comes to the Clintons. What is raising more red flags than normal, however, is the evidence that Sargsyan is no run-of-the-mill campaign donor.

“The really scary question is, what did this particular donor with this strange web of connections hope to buy for his quarter-million dollars?” Backer asked Fox News.

That web of connections is strange indeed.

The Committee to Defend the President is now alleging that SBK, a major Sargsyan-linked company “is an investment firm that is affiliated with United Arab Emirates president, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nahyan, and its international affiliate has business interests in Russia,” according to Fox.

“Among its dealings was a bid to finance $850 million for a major bridge project to connect Crimea with Russia,” the group claims.

“He worked for SBK, and SBK appears to have bid on some Crimean/Russian bridge project,” Backer said. “That’s usually an indicator of political favor and connections.”

It raises several chilling questions: Was Sargsyan paying a quarter million dollars to Clinton for political favors, and — more disturbingly — was that money actually from sources in Russia in order to smooth the way for its construction plans?

Nobody knows for sure. What is clear, however, is that there is a pattern of dirty money surrounding the Clintons, with the “Uranium One” and “Clinton Foundation” scandals just two of the most well-known examples.

“It reinforces how fast and loose the Clinton machine was when it came to ‘Hoovering up’ these megadonor checks, not just from questionable Hollywood and Wall Street elites but potentially from foreign influence peddlers using who knows what money,” Backer told Fox News.

“It reinforces the need to take a long hard look at not just the unlawful money laundering process, but the way in which they were solicited as well,” he continued. “The Clintons have never shown a great deal of concern for whomever it was cutting the checks — whether it’s foreign influence peddlers or Hollywood smut peddlers like Harvey Weinstein.”

If those claims are even partially true, then America dodged a bullet in November of 2016 — and it’s worth keeping the pile of foreign-connected Clinton scandals in mind the next time the left tries desperately to tie Donald Trump to Russia. Perhaps they should look in the mirror.

SLAVEHOLDER??

Washington Post Compares
Jeff Sessions To Slaveholder’

The Washington Post compared Attorney General Jeff Sessions to “slaveholders” after he quoted the Bible on Thursday while discussing his department’s policy of prosecuting all illegal immigrants who cross the border.

Sessions made the statement during a speech to law enforcement officers in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

WaPo ran a story entitled “Sessions cites Bible passage used to defend slavery in defense of separating immigrant families” by general assignment editor Keith McMillan and religion reporter Julie Zauzmer on Friday.

Rather than detailing the statistics Sessions cited in the speech that explain the immigration policy, the story quoted John Fea, a history professor at Messiah College in Pennsylvania.

“This is the same argument that Southern slaveholders and the advocates of a Southern way of life made,” Fea said.

Sessions spent much of the speech discussing the numbers behind current immigration policy, including separating families at the Southwest border.

“I would cite you to the Apostle Paul and his clear and wise command in Romans 13, to obey the laws of the government because God has ordained the government for his purposes,” Sessions said.

“Orderly and lawful processes are good in themselves. Consistent and fair application of the law is in itself a good and moral thing, and that protects the weak and protects the lawful.”

“The previous administration wouldn’t prosecute aliens if they came with children,” Sessions said.

“It was de-facto open borders if you came with children. The results were unsurprising. More and more illegal aliens started showing up at the border with children.”

Sessions laid out the numbers in the speech.

“In 2013, fewer than 15,000 family units were apprehended crossing our border illegally between ports of entry in dangerous areas of the country,” he said.

“Five years later, it was more than 75,000, a five-fold increase in five years. It didn’t even have to be their child that was brought, it could be anyone. You can imagine that this created a lot of danger.”

The U.S. has the “opportunity” to fix its broken immigration system now, Sessions said.

“I believe that’s it’s moral, right, just and decent that we have a lawful system of immigration,” he said. “The American people have been asking for it.”

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