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.
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LIGHTER SIDE

Political Cartoons by AF Branco

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ALERT ALERT

Hillary Clinton Was Not Formally Under
FBI Investigation At Any Time In 2015-2016

On Tuesday, Inspector General Michael Horowitz testified in a joint Congressional hearing to the House Oversight and House Judiciary panels about his review of the FBI’s (mis)handling of the Clinton email investigation.

House Oversight Chairman Trey Gowdy (R-SC) came out swinging Tuesday in a a joint hearing held by the House Oversight and House Judiciary Committees.

Gowdy ripped into Comey in his opening statement, stating, “we can’t survive with a justice system we don’t trust.”

Investigative journalist Paul Sperry reported Horowitz dropped a bombshell in his testimony.

Horowitz revealed the FBI never named a target or even a subject in the Clinton email probe!

Sperry tweeted: BREAKING: IG Horowitz revealed in Senate testimony FBI never named a target or even subject in Clinton probe. Not Mills, Abedin, Combetta or Clinton herself. “Nobody was listed as a subject of this investigation at any point in time,” adding this was “surprising” for a crim probe

Paul Sperry@paulsperry_

BREAKING: IG Horowitz revealed in Senate testimony FBI never named a target or even subject in Clinton probe. Not Mills, Abedin, Combetta or Clinton herself. "Nobody was listed as a subject of this investigation at any point in time," adding this was "surprising" for a crim probe

So neither Hillary nor her top aides were formally under investigation by the FBI at any time in 2015-2016, tweeted Sperry.

IG HOROWITZ DROPS BOMBSHELL DURING SENATE TESTIMONY:

“Nobody was listed as a subject of this [Clinton email] investigation at any point in time,” adding this was “surprising”

So neither Hillary nor her top aides were formally under investigation by FBI at any time in 2015-2016!

Paul Sperry@paulsperry_

IG HOROWITZ DROPS BOMBSHELL DURING SENATE TESTIMONY:

"Nobody was listed as a subject of this [Clinton email] investigation at any point in time," adding this was "surprising"

So neither Hillary nor her top aides were formally under investigation by FBI at any time in 2015-2016!

Paul Sperry@paulsperry_

BREAKING: Horowitz revealed that Hillary was never really under formal investigation, never listed by FBI as a "subject" of investigation.

President of Judicial Watch Tom Fitton reacted to this bombshell bias from the FBI.

Tom Fitton  @TomFitton

.@RealDonaldTrump is a subject, but Hillary Clinton was never a "subject." Outrageous. Shut the Strzok-Page-Comey-McCabe-Lynch-Yates-Glenn Simpson-Steele-Brennan-Fusion GPS-Muller special counsel "stop @realDonaldTrump" investigation down.

Paul Sperry@paulsperry_

BREAKING: IG Horowitz revealed in Senate testimony FBI never named a target or even subject in Clinton probe. Not Mills, Abedin, Combetta or Clinton herself. "Nobody was listed as a subject of this investigation at any point in time," adding this was "surprising" for a crim probe

tigation’ into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private server was a complete sham.

No subjects were named, immunity was handed out like candy and Hillary was exonerated before witnesses were interviewed, including Hillary Clinton herself.

Hillary Clinton’s ‘interview’ with the FBI wasn’t even under oath.

Even more egregious, Hillary discussed pregnancy and babies during the majority of the 2.5 hour FBI interview because one of her lawyers was pregnant at the time.

Inspector General Horowitz also testified in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee Monday.

TEA PARTY TARGET

Targeting Of Tea Party Groups
John McCain’s Staff Director Urged Lois Lerner
And IRS To Engage In “Financially Ruinous”

Conservative watchdog group, Judicial Watch obtained IRS documents Thursday revealing backstabber Senator John McCain’s former staff director urged the IRS, including the corrupt Lois Lerner to engage in “financially ruinous” targeting of conservative Tea Party groups.

And they did.

The IRS Conservative Targeting Scandal involved:

  • Hundreds of conservative groups were targeted
  • At least 5 pro-Israel groups
  • Constitutional groups
  • Groups that criticized Obama administration
  • At least two pro-life groups
  • An 83 year-old Nazi concentration camp survivor
  • A 180 year-old Baptist paper
  • A Texas voting-rights group
  • A Hollywood conservative group was targeted and harassed
  • Conservative activists and businesses
  • At least one conservative Hispanic group
  • IRS continued to target groups even after the scandal was exposed
  • And… 100% of the 501(c)(4) Groups Audited by IRS Were
  • Conservative

Now this…

Via Judicial Watch:

Judicial Watch today released newly obtained internal IRS documents, including material revealing that Sen. John McCain’s former staff director and chief counsel on the Senate Homeland Security Permanent Subcommittee, Henry Kerner, urged top IRS officials, including then-director of exempt organizations Lois Lerner, to “audit so many that it becomes financially ruinous.” Kerner was appointed by President Trump as Special Counsel for the United States Office of Special Counsel.

The explosive exchange was contained in notes taken by IRS employees at an April 30, 2013, meeting between Kerner, Lerner, and other high-ranking IRS officials. Just ten days following the meeting, former IRS director of exempt organizations Lois Lerner admitted that the IRS had a policy of improperly and deliberately delaying applications for tax-exempt status from conservative non-profit groups.

Lerner and other IRS officials met with select top staffers from the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee in a “marathon” meeting to discuss concerns raised by both Sen. Carl Levin (D-MI) and Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) that the IRS was not reining in political advocacy groups in response to the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision. Senator McCain had been the chief sponsor of the McCain-Feingold Act and called the Citizens United decision, which overturned portions of the Act, one of the “worst decisions I have ever seen.”

In the full notes of an April 30 meeting, McCain’s high-ranking staffer Kerner recommends harassing non-profit groups until they are unable to continue operating. Kerner tells Lerner, Steve Miller, then chief of staff to IRS commissioner, Nikole Flax, and other IRS officials, “Maybe the solution is to audit so many that it is financially ruinous.” In response, Lerner responded that “it is her job to oversee it all:”

Henry Kerner asked how to get to the abuse of organizations claiming section 501 (c)(4) but designed to be primarily political. Lois Lerner said the system works, but not in real time. Henry Kerner noted that these organizations don’t disclose donors. Lois Lerner said that if they don’t meet the requirements, we can come in and revoke, but it doesn’t happen timely. Nan Marks said if the concern is that organizations engaging in this activity don’t disclose donors, then the system doesn’t work. Henry Kerner said that maybe the solution is to audit so many that it is financially ruinous. Nikole noted that we have budget constraints. Elise Bean suggested using the list of organizations that made independent expenditures. Lois Lerner said that it is her job to oversee it all, not just political campaign activity.

President of Judicial Watch, Tom Fitton had this to say about the newly obtained IRS documents showing more proof the agency was weaponized under Obama:

“The Obama IRS scandal is bipartisan – McCain and Democrats who wanted to regulate political speech lost at the Supreme Court, so they sought to use the IRS to harass innocent Americans. The Obama IRS scandal is not over – as Judicial Watch continues to uncover smoking gun documents that raise questions about how the Obama administration weaponized the IRS, the FEC, FBI, and DOJ to target the First Amendment rights of Americans.”

Tom Fitton  @TomFitton

The Obama IRS scandal is not over – as Judicial Watch continues to uncover smoking gun documents that raise questions about how the Obama administration weaponized the IRS, the FEC, FBI, and DOJ to target the First Amendment rights of Americans.

Judicial Watch Obtains IRS Documents Revealing McCain’s Subcommittee Staff Director Urged IRS to...

McCain minority staff director Henry Kerner to IRS official Lois Lerner and other IRS officials: “the solution is to audit so many that it becomes financially ruinous” (Washington, DC) – Judicial...

judicialwatch.org

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