Hillary Clinton calls Trump a dictator, says she should be exempt from investigation.

November 21, 2017

So the Trump administration is a dictatorship?

Hillary Clinton seems to think so.

The whole idea is a bit of a stretch. In authoritarian dictatorships the government controls the media, does anybody seriously believe that Donald Trump controls the media?

One study showed that 91 percent of media coverage was anti-Trump. Another study showed that 96 percent of all media donations went to his opponent.

Here’s what Hillary Clinton has to say: “This is such an abuse of power and goes right at the rule of law … if they send a signal that we’re going be like some dictatorship, like some authoritarian regime, where political opponents are going to be unfairly, fraudulently investigated, that rips at the fabric of the contract we have that we can trust our justice system.”

What’s sad is that there are real authoritarian regimes in the world. With corruption and murder of citizens. Even as we speak, innocent people are dying in North Korea and in socialist Venezuela, at the hand of authoritarian regimes. Most of the nations of Africa and many in Asia are authoritarian.

When Bill Clinton was elected president, Hillary appointed her best friend, Margaret Milner Richardson, as director of the IRS and the IRS eventually audited the women who had accused Bill Clinton of sex abuse. You can read the whole story in glorious detail in “Game of Thorns.” Now, that is a better example of authoritarianism.

In reality, nothing that happened under the Clintons, or Bushes, or Barack Obama and nothing that is now happening under Donald Trump qualifies America as an authoritarian state.

The Clinton folks are nervous about all of the talk of a special counsel investigating the Clinton Foundation and Russia and conflicts of interest. Hundreds of millions of dollars were involved.

But isn’t it dangerous when one politician can be investigated and another one can’t?

Remember, the American people elected Donald Trump, not Hillary Clinton. The Justice Department is not an agency unto itself. It is not a separate power, like the Judiciary and the Legislative branches of government. It should certainly not operate at the behest of the political opposition and become their tool for undermining the duly elected president and his administration. The Justice Department is part of the Executive branch of government and, as such, should be run by Donald Trump, the chief executive.

He has every right, even responsibility, to make sure that the Justice Department does what he wants. That is not a dictatorship that is good government.

To describe America as an authoritarian regime is unfair to the millions of people who now live under the rule of harsh regimes, without liberty.

In North Korea and Venezuela, the head of state, and other members of government, can order the death of a citizen without trial. Innocent people are dying there today.

Thousands of people in North Korea have been born in prison camps, punished for life, because of the alleged crimes of their parents. These children are being raised by the state as second generation political prisoners.

In Nazi Germany, an authoritarian regime institutionalized mass extermination. At the Wannsee Conference, in the suburbs of Berlin, 15 officials of the German government met in 1942 and approved the genocide of the Jewish people. It was so inconceivable that a government would actually do such a thing that many Jews didn’t believe it until they actually walked into the gas chambers. They thought it was not in the interest of the government to take their lives. “We have value as workers, engineers, doctors,” they thought. But they were wrong.

We have seen Idi Amin in Uganda. And then there was Pol Pot in Cambodia. He marked for execution everyone who was in government, in academia, in medicine, all business owners, all journalists. He even marked for execution anyone who wore eye glasses because if they had glasses they could probably read and he didn’t want people who could read in his new Cambodia.

Now that is an authoritarian regime.

One of the reasons Hillary Clinton lost the 2016 election was her insolent demagoguery. Saying that America is now an authoritarian government with its own dictator, is an example of that. It is an insult to the intelligence of Americans. No one is above the law. And we should not be shamed from holding her to the same standards that we would hold anyone else.

Advertisements

How liberal elites cheat on their taxes

October 5, 2017

Celebrities promote socialism in public while privately fleeing to tax havens, leaving the cost of paying for it all to the rest of us. As Leona Helmsley famously declared, “Only little people pay taxes.”

Celebrities publicly argue for free healthcare, food, housing, education, entertainment, iPhones, guaranteed income, four day work weeks and all of this, not only for U.S. citizens, but for anyone who can get to America, legal or illegal. Indeed, some are promoting the idea that these are “rights”.

obamaclinton

How to avoid taxes.

During the 2016 campaign we learned that Hillary Clinton had privately told audiences that she wished the Western Hemisphere had no tariffs or borders at all. Of course, Clinton herself, set up a private foundation to avoid taxes altogether. It bankrolled $2 billion in donations from corporations and countries who expected to get an even greater return on their investment when she won.

Boeing, for example, donated $2 million to her foundation and their executives maxed out their legal contributions to her presidential campaign. Afterward, they expected $10 billion for a new Air Force One. But surprise, surprise, Donald Trump won the election. Now Boeing is being challenged by three new competitors for some of their projects and Trump wants a better deal on their plans for Air Force One.

Barack Obama, Mitt Romney, even Donald Trump, pay a lower percentage of their income on taxes than me or you or most Americans. And they are public figures. It gets much worse the deeper you dig. A New York Times article claims that liberal, MSNBC celebrity, Al Sharpton, has IRS tax leins of $4.5 million against him and his company.

Some of this began in the United Kingdom, when 1960 taxes reached a whopping 95% of the income of the rich. The Beatles’ George Harrison wrote his famous “Taxman.” It was a protest against the exorbitant rate.

In the ‘70s and ’80s many rockers ran to tax havens around the world. David Bowie moved to Switzerland. Cat Stevens to Brazil. Ringo Starr moved to Monte Carlo in 1975. He told Howard Stern he pays “zero taxes.” The Police‘s frontman Sting, who sang, “I don’t wanna be no tax exile” in 1978, left for Ireland a couple years later.

Get this. In those days, Rod Stewart and Bad Company avoided taxes by moving to California. Not anymore. People are moving out of California, to escape crime and some of the highest tax rates in the world.

Before I comment further, I want to say that many celebrities are very compassionate and generous. Here in America, Pat Boone, William Shattner, Cecily Tyson, Angelina Jolie, and many others have given their lives to helping others. The late Jerry Lewis and Bob Hope, raised millions for charity. Elton John did not run from the high tax rates in the United Kingdom. Many celebrities pay taxes through the nose.

I served as Chairman of the Charity Awards. Every president since Lyndon Johnson helped us, free of charge, except for the Clinton’s who asked us to pay a speaking fee for an appearance. The Fords, the Carters, the Reagans, the Bushes, all opened the White House to us.

That said, this flight of tax money from the UK has been going on for years. And it happens here in America too.  It illustrates the point that no one wants to give money to a government.

Bill Gates is giving away half of his fortune and that’s wonderful but he is not giving it to the Department of Health and Human Services or the Department of Education. Like other philanthropists he has set up his own NGO. Why? Is the government too corrupt and inefficient?

Warren Buffet says that we should increase taxes on the rich and he will be glad to pay his fair share but nothing stops Warren Buffet from giving his money to the US government now. He doesn’t need written permission from Nancy Pelosi to give more money.

Avoiding taxes is an instinct. It’s like touching fire. It’s okay if you give the government YOUR money – who cares? But I worked hard for MY money. Don’t take it away from me and my children.

The only public figure I know of who has donated to the federal government is Donald Trump, who recently gave $1 million.

Today, celebrities use Nevada and Florida as tax havens. Here’s how it works. They own a mansion in Beverly Hills but they buy a condo in Las Vegas or Miami. As long as they spend 51% of their year in Nevada, for example, they can declare themselves a Nevada resident and Nevada has no state income taxes. Thus they avoid those ridiculous California taxes that everybody else in the state pays.

It gets better. Before flying to Spain to do a movie, they go to their Nevada condo and spend the night, flying out the next day from Las Vegas. The entire trip, even months abroad, counts as living in Nevada.

Of course, they pay taxes. There are 21 separate fees and taxes on their airline ticket alone. But they don’t pay those outrageous California State taxes. That’s only for the “the little people.”


Chuck Grassley has asked the most important questions

September 30, 2017
.
      In the past I have had my differences with Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa but he is so busy pursuing justice and fairness in the U.S. Senate that I have to take my hat off and hold it in my hand and humbly ask his forgiveness.
.
      Senator Chuck Grassley serves as Chairman of the Judiciary Committee. And right now, he is asking the most important questions about what happened in 2016.
.
      After the political circus paraded through the Senate and dominated cable television, Grassley began to poke around for details.
.
Senator Chuck Grassley

Senator Chuck Grassley

Much of his work should have been done by an objective media but it was not. Some could have been resolved by the Trump White House but it was hard for them to defend themselves and so Grassley raised issues that no one else would raise.

.
      For example, Grassley recently asked the FBI if they actually warned Donald Trump that Paul Manafort, whom he had brought into his campaign as chairman in 2016, was being watched by the agency because of his dealings with pro-Kremlin figures. Good point. Obvious question. No one but Grassley has even thought to ask it.
.
      And if there was no such FBI warning, Grassley said he wanted to know why. Weren’t there past warnings to other campaigns? The implication was that the Obama Justice Department was trying to entrap the Republican nominee.
.
      Obviously, the Obama administration and their lap dog Justice Department didn’t expect for Hillary Clinton to lose the election and they were not ready to discuss such points.
.
      A few days later Grassley threatened to subpoena two FBI officials to answer questions about Russia, Hillary Clinton’s email case, the firing of James Comey and more. Grassley wanted to know if there was improper political influence or a bias in the Justice Department.
.
      The FBI balked. The Justice Department was obviously nervous. Stephen Boyd, the assistant attorney general, wrote Grassley on September 11, 2017, saying that the FBI officials he wanted to talk to could not be interviewed, claiming that it would interfere with the work of Special Counselor, Robert Mueller.
.
      Grassley countered that he could conduct the interview behind closed doors. The answer was still no.
.
      For the moment, journalism in America is dead. Some of the most important questions about Russia and 2016 and Clinton and Trump are in the hands of one man. Senator Chuck Grassley. No one else has the mental acuity and ethical courage to pursue them. His questions, and there will be more of them, should become America’s questions.
.
      Grassley is not the bully that was Lyndon Johnson, nor is he the mesmerizing performer with the baritone voice, that was Everett Dirksen, but Grassley is every bit as important for this moment. He is an icon of the Senate and we need him.
.
      If Washington, DC is indeed a Swamp, there are some lights flickering along its banks. Chuck Grassley is one of them.
.

 


Starve the Beast: How JFK and Ronald Reagan got their tax cuts. Lessons for Trump.

September 29, 2017

So how did JFK and Ronald Reagan get their famous tax cuts through congress?

It’s called, “starving the beast.”

First, this is not easy. People forget. JFK’s tax cuts were actually passed by Lyndon Johnson in 1964. After JFK’s assassination. At that point it would have been political suicide to oppose a Kennedy idea. So it was a once in a lifetime opportunity.

Nevertheless, a Democratic president was opposed by liberal Democrats and conservative Republicans who felt that you shouldn’t give a tax cut without balancing the budget. Democratic Senate leader, Al Gore, Sr. was against it. Democratic House leader, Harry Byrd opposed it.

And Ronald Reagan lowered taxes in 1981 but his famous Tax Reform Act was actually passed in 1986, after he had been re-elected as president. That’s the one that reduced income tax brackets from 14 to 3, which is what Donald Trump is trying to do.

So it is not easy. And it will be historic of Trump does it in his first year.

Doug Wead and Ronald ReaganI once asked Ronald Reagan about his legacy, expecting him to talk about the end of the Cold War but he said that the one thing he was most proud of was his Tax Reform Act.

So if Donald Trump pulls this off, this year, it will be huuuuge. Historic.

Okay. Got it. But what did they do? How did JFK and RR actually get it passed? How can you get congress to move?

Three things.

#1) Both JFK and RR hit the road on a national tour to rally support for their plan. This gave them publicity. We can see that Trump would be good at this.

#2) They mobilized their supporters to call congress and light up the switchboard.

With a systematic, targeted approach on Twitter, Trump could do this too.

#3) They gave a national televised speech.

Trump hasn’t really used this option. It may not be what it once was because the White House no longer has a television monopoly. But it was an important tool for JFK and RR.

Finally, historically, does it really work?

Absolutely. It’s called “starving the beast”. JFK came to realize that the only way you can get the government to spend less is to lower taxes and force it to spend less. Reagan came to the same conclusion and showed that with lower taxes came increased business investment, creating jobs and new taxes.

In 1981 the top income tax bracket in the USA was 71%. Reagan lowered it to 28%.

By the end of his term in office the top 1% earners in America, who had been paying for 17.9% of the annual budget, were now paying 25% of the annual budget. The government had lowered taxes but gotten more money.


10 reasons why we may actually have a nuclear war with North Korea.

August 12, 2017

A respected pundit on national television last night was asked if she really believed that there would be a nuclear war with North Korea.

“Probably not,” she answered.

That’s not good enough.

Even the possibility of such a serious event needs to be considered. Newsweek says a war with North Korea would result in one million dead. And that is if it doesn’t go nuclear.

None of us can even contemplate the death toll of a nuclear exchange. Some estimates say 10 million lives. Some say much more. Even if the United States totally annihilated her enemy, even one nuclear hit on our mainland would substantially reduce us as an economic power.

Below are ten reasons why nuclear war may happen.

#1) North Korean president, Kim Jong-Un has a psychotic streak. If NBC and USA Today are to be believed, he fed his uncle to live, hungry dogs. (Really?) And CNN says he likely arranged the assassination of his own half brother.

#2) Kim Jong-Un has shown a willingness to sacrifice his own people.

He has maintained prison camps for thousands of North Koreans, many who were born into the camps, where they are still imprisoned, because of the crimes of their parents.

A recent escapee reported that he was encouraged from birth to denounce his own parents and witnessed their torture and execution.

Thus the deterrent of mutual assured destruction, (MAD), that held the world in check for two generations, may no longer offer restraint.

#3) Kim has paid a huge price to get his nuclear weapons.

He allowed millions of North Koreans to die in a national famine, while using all of his resources to advance his military. For what purpose?

#4) Reports suggest that North Korea is on the verge of economic collapse and may be willing to sell its nuclear technology to terrorist organizations such as ISIS or to Iran.

#5) Kim’s hostility toward America is three generations in the making. Both his father and grandfather saw the United States as their chief enemy.

#6) Kim showed what he is capable of doing up close in the personal example of Otto Warmbier. Otto was an American student, visiting North Korea with a youth group. He was arrested for trying to take a propaganda poster as a souvenir. He was sentenced to 15 years in prison and then given an early release. He returned to the United States in coma where he died within days.

#7) Communist ideology allows for mass murder.

One of its tenets, promoted by Lenin, holds that there should be a one party state. This has led to the execution of opponents. Scholars estimate that the number of mass murders by communists regimes is between a low of 21 million to a high of 70 million. But some scholars put the figure at 85-100 million.

I visited Cambodia after the genocide of Pol Pot. In his virulent version of communism, he marked for execution all educators, journalists, artists, clergy, soldiers and even anyone wearing eye glasses. It was determined that if a person wore eye glasses they could probably read and Pol Pot wanted to build his new Marxist regime from the bottom up. We have no way of knowing what Pol Pot would have done if he had nuclear weapons.

#8) Kim is isolated and surrounded by sycophants. It will impact his judgement.

We have all experienced hubris in ourselves and others. Having worked for more than one president, I can tell you that the most humble, self effacing, person can be corrupted and will become corrupted within weeks of power. Kim Jong-Un has been insulated from criticism and lavished with praise for three generations.

#9) Kim may be talented enough to fund and build his nuclear program and still, at the same time, be illogical in conducting his nation’s war policy.

Governments can be both efficient and illogical at the same time. The Germans under Hitler organized the mass execution of millions of people even while many of their victims argued right up to the end that such a government program was not possible, that they and their professions were needed for the war effort. Why would a government kill its own doctors, scientists and talented engineers?

#10) History is filled with the stories of miscalculations that led to war.

World War One began when clumsy diplomats misunderstood communications.

We are told that the United States has many options and need not fear. I sat in the Green Room of Fox yesterday, talking to two, respected generals, who outlined what we can do to protect ourselves. But both generals admitted that we have consistently miscalculated about North Korean nuclear capabilities. And many of our options for defense have never been put to the test.

Can a government that cannot run its own Veteran’s Hospitals perfectly execute every offensive military program, every time?

 

 

 

 


Ivanka power not diminished

August 1, 2017
.
Today, Ivanka Trump tweeted that she will be pleased to “serve alongside General Kelly.”
.
The anti-Trump media went nuts.
.
Did this represent a power play? What does it mean? “Serve alongside.”
.
As one who has spent his life reading and writing about the children of presidents, interviewing 19 of them, traveling with them to foreign countries, visiting in their homes, entertaining them in mine, sitting in the Oval Office with several of them, I can offer a little perspective on this subject.

.

Chloe Wead Photography

Ivanka Trump meets with Lydia Pogu and Joy Bishara, two Chibok girls who escaped the Boko Haram. This was the day that the State Department released its report on human trafficking.

Yes, the new chief of staff, John Kelly, will run a tight ship. Projects and people will go through him.

 .
No, he will not isolate the president from his wife and children. Sorry. It doesn’t work that way. Does YOUR life work that way?
.
And his wife and children will still lobby their favorite projects. Maybe after hours, or over a sandwich at lunch but it will still happen.
.
Don’t YOUR children lobby you?
.
A family does not cease to become a family when it moves into the White House.
.
I worked closely, daily, with the children of George H.W. Bush. Including that time when James O. Baker, III was running the presidential campaign. And later when Governor John Sununu was running the White House. Baker and Sununu were arguably, two of the greatest chiefs of staff in American history. They were considered total control freaks. Every idea and scrap of paper went through their hands.
.
But neither one blocked the president’s sons or daughter. I was sometimes with them when they called or he called them. Or when they met backstage or for a Chinese dinner.
.
They were respectful enough not to usurp the authority of the president’s man but they did not shy away from offering their ideas or opinions. In fact, a case can be made, that if George W. Bush had been more involved, the Richard Darman tax increase would never have occurred and Bush, Sr. would not have broken his famous pledge, “read my lips” and just maybe he would have been re-elected to a second term.
Chloe Wead Photography

Ivanka hugs Lydia Pogu, escaped Chibok girl.

The very position of chief of staff owes its power to presidential children.
.
George Washington took his stepson, Jackie, as an aide de camp at the battle of Yorktown. Jackie died from a communal disease. George Adams and John Adams, II, both served as secretary’s to the president. So did young Smith Van Buren, Robert Tyler, Jr., Richard Taylor, Robert Johnson, Ulysses S. Grant , Jr., Webb Hayes and the list goes on.
.
As the position of secretary to the president grew, the first chiefs of staff emerged from the swamp. Sherman Adams stepped forth, running the White House for Dwight David Eisenhower. But even then, Ike’s son, John Eisenhower also worked on the White House staff and lived in the private quarters. His wife, Barbara, served as hostess on the road trips, since First Lady, Mamie Eisenhower had a fear of flying.
.
It’s true, there have been some pretty tightly run White House operations that tended to shut out the children. FDR’s kids had to make an appointment to see their father. But Roosevelt had a dysfunctional marriage and family.  It should not be invoked by critics of “kid power” as an example. The last year in office, FDR brought in his daughter Anna, to run the White House and help him run interference with First Lady Eleanor, while he picked up his old romance with Lucy Rutherford. She was with him when he died in Warm Springs, Georgia.
.
You can read it all in THE RAISING OF A PRESIDENT or in ALL THE PRESIDENTS CHILDREN.
.
There is nothing to be alarmed about. The best things that have happened to Donald Trump have happened when Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump were involved. The trip to the Middle East, which involved back to back meetings with Saudi Arabia and Israel, is an exampmle.
.
Yes, Kelly will run a tight ship, so too did James Baker, John Sununu and Leon Paneta, but Trump will not be denied face time with his own family. Not gonna happen. And John Kelly, who lost a son in combat, wouldn’t want it to happen.
.

Donald Trump – Jeff Sessions? It has all happened before

July 26, 2017

He is perhaps the richest president in American history.

He is cantankerous, unpredictable, disruptive.

He hates the media and is openly at war with them. Meanwhile, the media have begun to attack his own family. He is secretly trying to buy his own media properties with plans to fight back.

He is at war with the Senate, including members from his own party. They retaliate by blocking some of his appointments.

He can’t trust his own cabinet, who he accuses of undermining him. This includes some of his most loyal, original supporters.

Behind it all is his campaign to “drain the swamp” and end what he sees as insider corruption, using the government to line their pockets.

I am speaking, of course, about Andrew Jackson, the seventh president of the United States.

I was one of the first students of history to call attention to the uncanny comparisons between the populist, Andrew Jackson and Donald Trump. This was shared years ago in an interview with Neil Cavuto. Two weeks later it was written up in a New York Times article. Now, with the open dialogue between President Trump and Attorney General Jeff Sessions, its time to take another look.

Some would argue that George Washington was actually more wealthy, comparisons are subjective. But still, Andrew Jackson was very rich.

Andrew Jackson blamed the newspapers for the death of his wife. Journalists wrote stories about Rachel Jackson, accusing her of being an adulterer and bigamist. The devout, religious Rachel was protected from theses stories but finally found them during a shopping trip in Nashville. She was trying to buy a dress for the inauguration. Her girlfriends tried to keep her away from the stacks of old newspapers laying around the shops but she was riveted.

Rachel went into a deep funk and died before the inauguration. She never wore her inaugural dress and she never set foot in the White House.

The Senate quarreled with Jackson and for the first time in American history, refused to approve a presidents’ cabinet nominee.

Furious with his outspoken attacks, they officially censured him in 1834.

Jackson became so estranged from his own cabinet, each of which had their own political entanglements, that he started meeting secretly in a back room of the White House with some informal friends that he trusted. This included an army major, two editors of newspapers who helped advise him on fighting back at his print media tormentors, a sympathetic U.S. Senator, his personal secretary, among others.

Word of the meetings became public. Because the room was close to the White House kitchen the informal advisers were dubbed “the kitchen cabinet.”

Critics said it was outrageous and unconstitutional.  Instead, every president since Andrew Jackson has had his own “kitchen cabinet” of informal outside advisers.  It became the beginnings of a White House political staff.

Jackson’s enemies accused him of being a sexist. It was the wives of cabinet members who drove the personal animosity. It all erupted with “the Peggy Eaton affair” where Jackson defended one of their own who had married a woman who was allegedly a former prostitute.

Andrew Jackson’s unpredictable and mercurial personality didn’t help matters. He was quick tempered. By some estimates he fought in one hundred duels. He died with bullets still in his body.

Behind it all was “money.” Andrew Jackson opposed the national bank which he saw as a device for insiders to get wealthy off the backs of the common men. This was behind the Senate’s censure of Jackson. It was why they denied his appointment as Secretary of the Treasury. It was why Jackson became isolated from the Washington establishment.

In spite of it all, Andrew Jackson was extremely popular with the people, themselves. He eventually cobbled together a chain of newspapers, which were called “the Jackson papers” and were deadly at attacking the political opposition.

In 1831 the Senate had rejected Martin Van Buren, Andrew Jackson’s nominee for Ambassador to Great Britain. It was a personal slap in the face to the president, meant to be a teaching experience for the new president, a lesson in power politics.

Later, Andrew Jackson got his revenge. When he ran for reelection, Martin Van Buren was added to the ticket as his vice president. Upon leaving office, Jackson used his popularity with the people to help get Martin Van Buren elected president himself.

Political experts saw Andrew Jackson as a shooting star that would race across the sky and excite the masses for a few moments and then be gone. Instead, he re-ordered power in Washington and impacted American history forever.

Today, his bronze statue sits in Lafayette Park, across the street from the White House. Andrew Jackson is on horseback, looking back at the front portico, waving his hat, obviously enjoying the last laugh. Perhaps, he is also waving to Donald Trump, and enjoying the ironies.