Observations from Robert Reich, American political commentator, professor, and author. He served in the administrations of Presidents Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter and was Secretary of Labor under President Bill Clinton from 1993 to 1997
So what promises HAS Trump kept?
One year after the election. An update for Trump voters on his election promises:
1. He told you he’d repeal Obamacare and replace it with something “beautiful.” You bought it. But he didn’t repeal and he didn’t replace. (Just as well: His plan would have knocked at least 23 million off health insurance, including many of you. Instead he's sabotaging the ACA causing premiums to increase even more)
2. He told you he’d cut your taxes. You bought it. But the tax “reform” bill he and House Republicans have produced won’t cut your taxes. Half of the middle class would see their taxes increase. The bill would cut corporate taxes and give millionaires a huge is tax break, and explode the national debt by at least $1.5 trillion.
3. He told you he’d invest $1 trillion in our nation’ crumbling infrastructure. You bought it. But after his giant tax cut for corporations and millionaires, there’s no money left for infrastructure.
4. He said he’d clean the Washington swamp. You bought it. But he’s brought into his administration more billionaires, CEOs, and Wall Street moguls than in any administration in history, to make laws that will enrich their businesses, and he’s filled departments and agencies with former lobbyists, lawyers and consultants who are crafting new policies for the same industries they recently worked for.
5. He said he’d use his business experience to whip the White House into shape. You bought it. But he created the most chaotic, dysfunctional, back-stabbing White House in modern history, and has already fired and replaced so many assistants (one of them hired and fired in a little more than a week) that no one knows who’s in charge of what.
6. He said he’d close “special interest loopholes that have been so good for Wall Street investors but unfair to American workers.” You bought it. But he picked Wall Street financiers to head every economic policy job, and his tax bill still retains the “carried interest” loophole that benefits Wall Street private-equity and hedge fund partners.
7. He told you he’d “bring down drug prices” by making deals with drug companies. You bought it. But now the White House says that promise is “inoperative.”
8. He said that on Day One he’d label China a “currency manipulator.” You bought it. But then he met with China’s president Xi Jinping and declared "China is not a currency manipulator.” Ever since then, Trump has been cozying up to Xi.
9. He said he wouldn’t bomb Syria. You bought it. But then he bombed Syria.
10. He said he’d build a “wall” across the southern border. You believed him. But there’s no money for that, either. Chief of staff John Kelly says it is “unlikely that we will build a wall, a physical barrier, from sea to shining sea.”
11. He called Barack Obama “the vacationer-in-Chief” and accused him of playing more rounds of golf than Tiger Woods. He promised to never be the kind of president who took cushy vacations on the taxpayer’s dime, not when there was so much important work to be done. You bought it. But in his first 9 months he has spent nearly 25 percent of his days at one of his golf properties for some portion of the day, according to Golf News Network, at a cost to taxpayers of an estimated $77 million. That’s already more taxpayer money on vacations than Obama cost in the first 3 years of his presidency. Not to mention all the money taxpayers are spending protecting his family, including his two sons who travel all over the world on Trump business.
12. He said he’d keep Muslim immigrants out of America. But his executive orders to prevent citizens from predominantly Muslim countries from entering the United States have been stopped by the federal courts, on grounds they violate the Constitution.
13. He said he’d force companies to keep jobs in America, and that there would be “consequences” for companies that shipped jobs abroad. You believed him. But despite their promises, Carrier, Ford, GM, and the rest have continued to ship jobs to Mexico and China. Carrier (a division of United Technologies) moved ahead with plans to send 1,000 jobs at its Indiana plant to Mexico.
Notwithstanding, the federal government has rewarded United Technologies with 15 new contracts since Trump's inauguration. Last year, Microsoft opened a new factory in Wilsonville, Oregon, that was supposed to herald a new era in domestic tech manufacturing. But in July, the company announced it was closing the plant. More than 100 workers and contractors will lose their jobs when production shifts to China. GE is sending jobs to Canada. IBM is sending them to Costa Rica, Egypt, Argentina, and Brazil. There have been no “consequences” for sending all these jobs overseas.
14. He said he’d create coal jobs. You believed him. He hasn’t. But here’s what he has done: Since 1965 a federal program called the Appalachian Regional Commission has spent $23 billion helping communities in coal states fund job retraining, reclaim land, and provide desperately needed social services. A.R.C. helped cut poverty rates almost in half, double the percentage of high-school graduates, and reduce infant mortality by two-thirds. Trump’s proposed budget eliminated A.R.C.
15. He said he’d make America safer. You believed him. But according to Mass Shooting Tracker, there have been 377 mass shootings so far this year, including 58 people killed and hundreds injured at a concert in Las Vegas, and 26 churchgoers killed and 20 injured at a church in Texas. Trump refuses to consider any gun controls.
16. In referring to his opponent in the 2016 presidential election, Hillary Clinton, he said he’d “lock her up.” But he has not locked her up. In the United States, unlike dictatorships, presidents do not prosecute and punish their political opponents. Trump has expressed frustration that he cannot order the FBI and Justice Department to do whatever he wants them to do."
Cost Plus World Market: 20 percent off entire purchase (alcohol not included).
Cracker Barrel: Free slice of double chocolate fudge Coca-Cola cake.
Decadent, A Coffee and Dessert Bar: Free slice of pie
Denny’s: Free build-your-own Grand Slam
Dickey’s Barbecue Pit: Free meal
Dollar General: 11 percent off purchases
Donutology: Free glazed doughnut from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Dunkin’ Donuts: Free doughnut
Famous Dave’s Legendary Pit Bar-B-Q: Free lunch combo
54th Street Grill: Free meal (up to $12). Dine-in only
Firebirds Wood Fired Grill: One complimentary military entrée with the purchase of an entree on Nov. 10.
Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers: Free combo meal coupon good through Nov. 30
Golden Corral: Free dinner from 5 to 9 p.m. Nov. 13
Grimaldi’s Coal Brick-Oven Pizzeria: 15 percent off on Nov. 10 and 11.
Great Clips: Free haircut on Nov. 11
Hereford House: Free entrée (up to $20) with the purchase of a second entrée at lunch and dinner. Hours vary per location.
Hooters: One free meal from a select menu
Houlihan’s Restaurants: Free meal from a special menu
Hy-Vee: Free breakfast
HOP: Free red, white and blue pancakes
Kansas City Zoo: Complimentary admission
LaMar’s Donuts: Free doughnut and 12-ounce coffee.
Little Caesars: Free lunch combo ($5 value) from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
LongHorn Steakhouse: Free appetizer and 10 percent off the total bill from Nov. 10 to 12.
Main Event Entertainment: Complimentary $10 FUNcard that can be used on all Main Event games, and one free entrée from the special Veterans Day menu.
Minsky’s Pizza Cafe & Bar: Free 6-inch Philly cheesesteak, fries and a soft drink, dine-in only.
Muscle Maker Grill: Free meal
Museum at Prairiefire: All access for veterans and their guests
O’Dowd’s Gastrobar: Free entree
Olive Garden: One free entree (five to choose from) with unlimited soup or salad and breadsticks, dine-in only.
On the Border Mexican Grill & Cantina: Free lunch combo
Outback Steakhouse: Free Bloomin’ Onion and free Coca-Cola drink
Pie Five Pizza Co.: Free pizza
Pinstripes, Prairiefire: Free entree up to $20.
Porto do Sul: Free Harvest Table, for lunch only Nov. 10 and 11.
Price Chopper: 25 cents off per gallon (or 500 points toward food savings) on veterans’ next fill-up at QuikTrip (up to 20 gallons). Veterans need to bring their Chopper Shopper Rewards Card to one of the stores on Nov. 11 to receive the discounts.
Red Robin Gourmet Burgers and Brews: Free Red’s Tavern double burger with bottomless steak fries
Red Lobster: Free appetizer or dessert.
Rock & Brews Restaurants: Free pulled pork sandwiches Nov. 10.
Ruby Tuesday: Free appetizer
Scooters Coffee: Free cup of coffee
Shoney’s: Free all-you-care-to-eat breakfast bar from 6 to 11 a.m.
Spin Neapolitan Pizza: Free Mini Mia pizza and salad or soup combo
Sport Clips: Free haircuts
Starbucks: Free tall coffee
Stroud’s, Fairway and Overland Park: Free entree
Texas Roadhouse: Free lunch from a select menu
Topgolf: Free basic lifetime memberships if veterans sign up on Nov. 11, as well as 10 percent off gameplay and 20 percent off other memberships.
Twin Peaks: Free menu item from a select menu on Nov. 13.
Yard House: Free appetizer, dine-in only.
YaYa’s Eurobistro: 20 percent off purchase and a $10 bonus card.
Zarda Hickory Pit Bar-B-Q: Free pulled pork sandwich, side and medium drink from 11 a.m to 2 p.m.
And don't forget all these facts and statistics, folks. Our airport keeps getting MORE and yet MORE traffic, month over month, year over year, AS IT IS. As badly maintained and managed as our airport is now, by our Airport Authority, we STILL KEEP GETTING MORE PEOPLE GOING THROUGH IT. Face it, they're coming here, to Kansas City. They're not coming here for a new, gleaming airport.
If anyone wants to increase the number of people and flights coming and going at our airport, they should give money to the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, not propose we build a more than one billion dollar new airport terminal.
Personally thanking KMBC TV-9 for recording and posting this since every other media outlet in town either mindlessly supports the more than 1 billion dollar boondoggle that is a new, single-terminal airport or they're silent on the issue.
The Show-Me Institute's Patrick Tuohey says Kansas City voters should vote "no" on Question 1.
Finally, finally some logic and fiscal responsibility on this issue.
Thank you, KMBC! and thank you, Patrick Tuohey!
This video, above, is newer, but he videotaped the following response to the airport idea March 6, 2014.
"Patrick Tuohey explains that the cost of a new terminal at Kansas City International Airport would be passed along to passengers. Higher ticket prices would result and that could cause airlines and travelers to look for alternatives to KCI."
Tomorrow, folks! Vote! And vote NO--a resounding NO!--on Question 1 on the ballot in Kansas City.
A friend--an architect, no less--made this very clear, intelligent, fair observation this past week out on Facebook. (See link and credit below).
Mayor Sly James and The Kansas City Star and all kinds of people and organizations have come out for this new, single terminal, more-than-one-billion-dollar-boondoggle of an airport, saying, now it's "fiscally responsible" (it's anything but) and the right thing to do and the way to go forward with progress and the city. They also claim it will be just as convenient as our current airport and terminals.
To which I and a lot of us out here promptly say "bunk."
Think about this.
If, God forbid, the "New KCI" people and vote wins this coming week, we would get, yes, a single terminal airport. Sure, it will blow through more than 1 billion dollars that we don't need to and shouldn't spend and it will make flying in and out of Kansas City far more expensive and it's grossly, fiscally and environmentally irresponsible but there's one more thing.
We would get that one, single security check in.
Think how that works at other airports.
Think of the lines, the long, long lines just to get to security, that one security check in at all those other airports. Then think of waiting to get through that security.
We don't have that now. With our current terminals, we don't have those abominable long lines and long, long waits.
And Mayor James and the Star and others are going to tell us it will be just as convenient?
With Trump President, I've been hoping this is just a swerve, a bump in our road to and of progress, you know? Just a brief mistake, if, yes, more than just slight.
But then, you look at the already-wealthy and corporations of the nation, firmly in control, creating more and yet more ways to shovel money their way since they own the Republican Party, at minimum. And you look at the way the NRA owns them and so, runs America, getting and keeping far too many weapons out there in the nation, on our streets. People being shot and lots killed, needlessly.
Then there's the opioid crisis, killing thousands of Americans and all because Big Pharma also has their sway with our government and so, us.
And now, this President Trump putting more and yet more science deniers in charge all over our government, in the EPA and at NASA, etc. Then putting people from the big banks in offices to support the banks and not the people, not protecting the people, you and I.
Then China has stepped up on the international politics and leadership field since there's a yawning gap of leadership with The Orange One in the White House.
I think, maybe they're right.
I still hope they're wrong but maybe we have, in fact, already begun to slike, as a nation and society and "great power."
Our best days behind us?
No longer the world's leading power and "beacof light", "beacon of hope"?
They mean to say they have no intention or goal to keep up the place or run it well or run it right and manage it correctly?
So just because they have no plan or plans---or profess to not have any---we should vote for a more than 1 billion dollar redo at the airport?
Anyone else feel like they’re being threatened or blackmailed here besides me?
Naturally they’re going to say there’s “no plan b.” Sure they do. They want their big, new plan. I get that.
But how about, if they lose, as they should, after this vote, how about they do just that, take care of the facility, open it up, maintain it, get restaurants in, open up the restrooms, all of it? The whole thing.
As I said earlier here, I've been receiving big postcards here in Brookside, daily, telling us all why we should vote for the billion dollar plus boondoggle that is a new, single terminal airport. I didn't get one yesterday but today got two.
And on both of these today, they both repeated the same, very familiar phrase.
The whole idea of paying out more than one billion dollars--because it will be more than one billion dollars, folks, for a new single terminal airport here in town, let there be no doubt--is both fiscally and environmentally irresponsible.
I've said it repeatedly.
So what phrase is added today, to these new postcards from the "vote for a new terminal" folks?
Oh, yes. On both of them, they suddenly say "fiscally responsible."
They ripped me off.
Suddenly, suddenly they're touting a completely new airport terminal as "fiscally responsible."
The previous day, on the post card for that day, as proof, they called it "fiscally smart."
Forget that it will cost us more than 1 billion dollars.
Forget that we're walking away from 3 existing, functioning, convenient, attractive, very practical terminals and other buildings and facilities there so they can be torn down and thrown away.
Forget that we could spend far, far less on our existing facilities and get the security we need and the restaurants and all the other facilities we want and need.
Forget all that.
They're saying we should only throw away the old buildings, build new and spend, spend, spend.
Since when is spending more--in this case, a lot more--to get what you want and need "fiscally responsible"?
Only now does that make sense and only according to the "new KCI" people.
So they ripped me off for the phrase. Great for them.
They should give me residuals.
The fact is, building a new airport is not only unnecessary but fiscally irresponsible.
Yes sir, there's a virtual "full court press" going on just now, this week, from the people and groups pushing for the more than one billion dollar boondoggle that is the "new KCI" campaign.
On KCUR, 89.3 FM this morning, Steve Kraske is going to throw out his one sided support for it on his program "Up to Date" at 11 am. It is our local NPR station and you wish they'd be impartial and non-partisan, since they're a news site, mostly but Mr. Kraske has gone along with the newspaper, the Star, and so many other local celebrities and supports it. I'm hoping for some good, probing questions today on the show, so it isn't just a fully, one-sided prop job for this nonsense.
Then, tomorrow night, our own Kansas City Star is hosting a town hall on KCI. Even the name of it shows they're not being a non-partisan news site: "Why we need a new KCI." They aren't even pretending to be reporting news and not taking sides. That is tomorrow night, again, at 7 pm at Union Station. From the sounds of it, they're to be in what is not a terribly large room because when you register for it online, it says seating is limited. I fear and expect they don't want too large a crowd lest they get too many opposing views from the audience. Here's hoping.
So for all the more rational and fiscally and environmentally responsible people out there who see and know this "new KCI" for the absurd, again, boondoggle that it is, by all means, please phone in today to Mr. Kraske's show. Let's hold the supporters "feet to the fire", so to speak. Let's point out what an outrageous, expensive, ridiculous and yes, again, irresponsible move this would be.
Then, let's do it again, this time, in person, by going to the Star's town hall tomorrow evening. Come loaded with good, hard, fair, researched questions for them, too.
Here in Brookside, we've gotten a large postcard nearly every day from the "Better KCI" group, pointing out why they think we should have a new, single terminal airport, even with it taking more than 1 billion dollars to do so.
Yesterday's postcard shows, as the headline says, that these people are getting desperate.
They've begun repeating the same, old, tired ideas now. Today was this.
All they could say today, with this postcard was that our current airport needs updates--tell us something we don't know---and that they would cost $500,000.
Let's put this in perspective.
First, suddenly $500,00 is a lot of money.
They want 1 billion dollars for this new, single terminal airport--actually, it will be more than 1 billion dollars, more than twice as much---but they're suddenly complaining about spending too much money.
Talk about trying to have it both ways. Wow.
So one half billion dollars is A LOT but more than one billion just ain't that much.
What utter, ridiculous nonsense.
Spending only one half of what they propose for a new airport, to get and keep what we need seems clearly very sensible. Why on Earth would or should we throw away good, very convenient, intelligent, already built buildings, modernize and update them and continue to use them?
It makes eminent sense.
On the postcard yesterday, they say: "Our airport was built in 1972 and it's served us well, but it's past our prime."
And that, right there ladies and gentlemen, is our problem. It is one of America's problems. We've seen it, repeatedly, down through decades and the short last century here in the US.
After about 40 or 50 years, we think we need to somehow "move on", tear down a building--in this case, buildings--and press forward with progress somehow. All across Europe, they have functioning buildings, hundreds of years old but we have to tear ours down, build new, start all over again and begin anew.
This is fiscally irresponsible. And that's what's wrong with this plan of theirs. It is fiscally irresponsible. Actually, to be clear and accurate, it is grossly irresponsible, fiscally. That's ignoring the fact that it's also environmentally irresponsible. I won't even touch on that.
There is no reason in the world why we cannot update, modernize and yes, improve our existing 3 terminals at our airport, get the security we need and continue to use these buildings, these facilities.
I say again, the Airport Authority, our Airport Authority has been conniving for a new airport and for years. To get it, they have ignored and neglected maintenance and not worked to get restaurants at these existing terminals, all so they could say today and for the last several years that we needed a new airport, a new building and that what we have isn't working and doesn't work.
Again, I repeat, look at the statistics. Our airport keeps increasing the numbers of flights, month after month and year over year yet they say it isn't working and we need a new airport.
So please, all you people at "Better KCI"? Mayor James? Airport Authority? Cut it out. Stop lying to us. Stop misrepresenting the truth. Stop redefining the way things are up there at the airport because even given how badly the Airport Authority is running and not maintaining it, it's still increasing in flights, statistically.
So with, actually, some good and decent and fair and intelligent updating and modernizing---and for far, far less money---we good have that stellar airport you keep describing.
And we'd save hundreds of millions of dollars doing it, in the meantime.
Vote no---a resounding, responsible NO--on Question 1 next week, November 7.