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The GOP has referenced the 500 billion dollars already allocated has not been spent, so adding more money to the “cares” act is unnecessary. The article below explains why and how these funds are being spent now and how the balance will be spent. Spending these funds effectively is a complicated action. MA

Scott Patterson, Sarah Krouse  4 days ago

Billions of dollars in federal funds earmarked for boosting nationwide Covid-19 testing remain unspent months after Congress made the money available, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

In April, Congress allocated roughly $25 billion for federal agencies and states to expand testing, develop contact-tracing initiatives and broaden disease surveillance.

According to HHS data, only about 10% to 15% of that total has been drawn down, meaning the cash has been spent or committed to various efforts. The funds for various testing initiatives were part of the Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act.

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The Trump administration has taken a state-led approach to testing Americans for Covid-19, dispatching funds and helping states procure the swabs and reagents they need to facilitate testing. The strategy, federal officials say, helps states identify and cater to their specific needs.

Of the $25 billion, some $10.25 billion was sent to states and U.S. territories in May to expand testing and develop contact-tracing programs at their discretion, but as of Aug. 14, just $121 million of that pool of funds had been drawn down.

An agency spokesman said HHS won’t know how the funds were used until the fiscal year ends Sept. 30.

HHS is focused on expanding testing and sending the right types of tests to the right types of settings, Adm. Brett Giroir, assistant secretary for health at the agency, said on a call with reporters Wednesday.

“There are plenty of tests and that’s growing substantially,” said Adm. Giroir, who has overseen U.S. testing efforts.

Still, overwhelming demand for diagnostic tests in July as cases spiked in the southern and western regions of the country led to lab backlogs and weekslong delays for results and hindered contact tracing and containment efforts.

There were about 25 million tests done in July and Adm. Giroir estimated the U.S. will have 90 million tests available in September.

“No health department or state can cry poor during this health crisis,” said Will Humble, executive director for the Arizona Public Health Association. “It’s not a matter of more money. It’s a matter of using the money that has already been given to counties and states effectively,” he said.

More than $8 billion of the $25 billion is to be spent at the discretion of HHS. Much of that money hasn’t been distributed yet, HHS spokeswoman Mia Heck said in response to questions from The Wall Street Journal about the funds.

“HHS continues to monitor the situation and support response and recovery activities supported with additional emergency supplemental resources,” she said.

Sens. Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.) and Patty Murray (D., Wash.) in June sent a letter to HHS Secretary Alex Azar calling on the Trump administration to disburse the $8 billion immediately, with an emphasis on addressing contact tracing efforts and collecting data on racial and ethnic disparities in coronavirus cases.

Testing for coronavirus is seen as a key part of the nation’s campaign to beat back the disease, allowing officials to track new outbreaks and quarantine people who test positive. While testing capacity has expanded rapidly, some experts say it isn’t enough to capture the full extent of the pandemic.

Federal officials have advocated for testing of those with symptoms and known contact with infected individuals, rather than widespread, regular testing as part of return to work and school plans. Some public health officials argue that broad, regular, widely available testing is critical to safely reopening the economy.

After surging through most of July, U.S. testing rates have slowed somewhat in August.

The seven-day average of new tests run was 709,347 on Thursday, according to the Covid Tracking Project, down from 781,156 a month earlier. There were weekly declines in testing in 21 states as of Thursday, according to Johns Hopkins University.

Some of those declines were the result of testing site closures during a hurricane earlier this month and labs clearing backlogs from July, Adm. Giroir said. Some states have also revised testing criteria to reduce demand, while the federal government changed guidance for returning to work, eliminating a recommendation that individuals receive two negative tests.

Of the $25 billion in PPP funds for testing, another $5.7 billion was to be sent to various government agencies involved in testing, such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration. As of this week, $1.62 billion of those funds had been obligated or committed to the agencies, according to HHS.

Agencies including the National Institutes of Health were to use those funds to buy diagnostic and serological tests, source lab supplies and develop new testing technologies.

Federal relief packages also included $2 billion to pay for testing uninsured individuals. Of that, $235.5 million has been spent.

Just to clarify: Many current serving Congressional members have served through previous tax reforms that benefitted the wealthy (and themselves) while espousing working for their constituents. It is unfortunate that many of will not or do not read anything that doesn’t have pictures. MA

Three Questions: Prof. Jacob Hacker on Tax Rates for the Rich 

recently published book by economists Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman argues that the richest Americans now pay lower tax rates than any other income group. The dramatic claim has prompted discussion of how best to measure tax rates, whether to offset certain tax credits, and what the optimal tax rate is for capital versus labor. But the trend lines are clear: wealthy Americans are paying less in taxes while economic inequality grows. We asked Yale political scientist Jacob Hacker, author of American Amnesia and Winner-Take-All Politics, to explain how this situation developed and why it’s proved politically difficult to raise taxes on the rich.

Jacob S. Hacker

What’s behind the dramatic fall in tax rates on the very rich over the last 50 years?

Tax rates have fallen on the very rich (even as the incomes of the rich have exploded) for three main reasons. First, taxation of capital (whether in the form of capital gains taxes, estate and gift taxes, or corporate taxes) has fallen dramatically. Second, top marginal income tax rates have come way down. As late as the 1960s, there were twenty-four tax brackets and a top marginal tax rate of over 90 percent—which insured that the superrich paid a higher rate than the run-of-the-mill affluent. Third, the superrich and corporations have become better at avoiding taxation. As the political scientist Jeffrey Winters puts it, an enormous “wealth defense industry” has grown up to help the wealthiest Americans and most profitable U.S. businesses use offshore accounts and other strategies to minimize taxation.

How much does this change in tax rates contribute to overall economic inequality?

Falling tax rates have contributed a lot to rising inequality. Most analysts distinguish between what people earn through their labor and investments (pre-tax income) and what they take home after taxes and public benefits (post-tax income). If you make that distinction, what you find is that much of the rise in inequality has involved pre-tax incomes. It’s notable, however, that rising inequality has not been accompanied by rising tax progressivity, even though most Americans support more progressive taxes. What’s more, 

If it were up to you, how would you address this dynamic?

The obvious answer is to raise taxes on the rich, which is in fact a very popular position right now. Politically, however, raising taxes has proved difficult, because the affluent are well represented in Washington and because there has been a persistent belief among political elites (not very well supported by the evidence) that higher taxes on the rich will destroy entrepreneurialism. Senator Elizabeth Warren (who’s been advised by Saez and Zucman) wants to test the idea that major new taxes on the affluent are a political non-starter. We’ll see if she gets the chance! 

Big Issues: The Roots of America’s Exceptional Inequality

In Yale SOM’s Global Leadership: Big Issues course, Yale experts lead discussions of some of the most significant challenges facing the planet. Yale political scientist Jacob Hacker joined the class to discuss the tax, policy, and political forces that have disproportionately benefited the richest Americans —and caused many to feel left behind.


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Apparently Trump U’s primary training was to learn the art of laminating lies upon more lies.MA

By Chris Cillizza, CNN Editor-at-large 14 hrs ago

On Sunday morning, President Donald Trump tweeted. And tweeted. And tweeted.
Between 9:04 am and 9:37 am, Trump sent 5 tweets — all around the same basic theme: He is being unfairly persecuted by special counsel Robert Mueller even as Mueller and the broader FBI overlook crimes by Democrats.
The tweets are riddled with misinformation and, in some cases, outright falsehoods. Taken together, Trump said 11 things that aren’t true. Here’s the breakdown — tweet by tweet.
1. “Things are really getting ridiculous. The Failing and Crooked (but not as Crooked as Hillary Clinton) @nytimes has done a long & boring story indicating that the World’s most expensive Witch Hunt has found nothing on Russia & me so now they are looking at the rest of the World!” (9:04 am)

Trump is referring here to an article in the Times published Saturday detailing a 2016 meeting between Donald Trump Jr. and a liaison for two Arab princes in which the emissary made clear that his clients wanted to assist Trump’s campaign.
He is also making a tangential reference to a detailed piece published in the Times earlier this week that detailed the origins of the FBI investigation into Russia interference in the 2016 election and possible collusion between his campaign and the Russians.
Trump is hanging his conclusion on this one sentence: “A year and a half later, no public evidence has surfaced connecting Mr. Trump’s advisers to the hacking or linking Mr. Trump himself to the Russian government’s disruptive efforts.”
What that sentences makes clear is a) no public evidence yet exists and b) the investigation is ongoing.
Untruth/Exaggeration Count: 1
2. “….At what point does this soon to be $20,000,000 Witch Hunt, composed of 13 Angry and Heavily Conflicted Democrats and two people who have worked for Obama for 8 years, STOP! They have found no Collussion with Russia, No Obstruction, but they aren’t looking at the corruption…”
There’s zero factual basis — at least that I can find — for Trump putting a $20 million price tag on the Mueller probe. The closest we have come to a fact-based cost for the Mueller probe is back in December, when the investigation’s total cost was $6.7 million.
Trump’s claim that there are 13 Democrats on Mueller’s team is also false. According to The Washington Post’s Fact Checker, five of the 16 known members of Mueller’s team donated to Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign. The New York Times says that nine of the 17 known lawyers on Mueller’s team have donated to Democratic campaigns in the past. Then there’s this from the Post’s Philip Bump: “Of the 18 attorneys we identified on Mueller’s team, half gave no money to anyone, according to our analysis. Another five gave $1,000 or less. The one who gave the most also gave to two Republicans.”
RELATED: Meet the Mueller team
It’s not entirely clear who Trump is referring to with the line “two people who have worked for Obama for 8 years” but, presumably, one of them is Mueller himself. The problem with that is that Mueller was appointed FBI director by President George W. Bush, a Republican. President Obama simply kept Mueller on for the length of his 10-year term.
Trump says that Mueller’s team has found no collusion (he misspelled that word in the original tweet), but that too is not accurate. The investigation is ongoing and all of Mueller’s findings have yet to go public.
Untruth/Exaggeration Count: 4
3. “…In the Hillary Clinton Campaign where she deleted 33,000 Emails, got $145,000,000 while Secretary of State, paid McCabes wife $700,000 (and got off the FBI hook along with Terry M) and so much more. Republicans and real Americans should start getting tough on this Scam.”
First, a truth: Clinton did delete 33,000 emails after she and her attorneys determined they were entirely private and personal communications with no ties to her work as Secretary of State.
Now, to the untruths.
The $145 million figure Trump is referring to is the total donations to the Clinton Foundation by nine individuals who also at one time or another had investments in a Russian company that Clinton’s State Department allowed to buy a majority stake in Uranium One, a Canada-based company with US mining interests. The problems with Trump’s claim, as detailed here by PolitiFact, are considerable and include the fact that the donations to the Clinton Foundation were made prior to the idea of Clinton serving as secretary of State and that State was one of nine agencies who okayed the deal.
Trump’s insistence that someone in the Clinton campaign paid then-FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe’s wife $700,000 as a payoff to drop any investigations into them is a jumble of falsehoods. McCabe’s wife ran for the state Senate in Virginia in 2015. A super PAC affiliated with Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, a longtime Clinton ally, donated $500,000 to her campaign. She lost. There is zero evidence that Hillary Clinton was involved in the donation in any way, shape or form, or that McAuliffe made the donation to dissuade Andrew McCabe from looking into alleged wrongdoing by the Clintons.
Untruth/Exaggeration Count: 2
4. “Now that the Witch Hunt has given up on Russia and is looking at the rest of the World, they should easily be able to take it into the Mid-Term Elections where they can put some hurt on the Republican Party. Don’t worry about Dems FISA Abuse, missing Emails or Fraudulent Dossier!”
The Mueller probe has not “given up” on Russia. It’s worth noting that five people in the Trump campaign orbit have already pleaded guilty to crimes unearthed by Mueller and several — including former national security adviser Michael Flynn and former deputy campaign chairman Rick Gates — are cooperating with the Mueller probe.
It’s less clear what Trump is referring to with the phrase “Dems FISA abuse” although he has repeatedly suggested that Obama ordered a wiretap on him at Trump Tower during the campaign (not true) and that the FBI placed an informant in his campaign as spy (knowledgeable sources deny that claim).
As for the missing emails, it is not clear what crime Trump is alleging, although there is little doubt Clinton would have been better served to have a neutral third party go through her emails to determine which were personal and could be deleted and which were not.
Trump’s claim that the so-called “Steele dossier” is “fraudulent” is also not accurate. The more salacious elements of the dossier, gathered by former British spy Christopher Steele, are unconfirmed by the FBI. But the intelligence community has made clear that portions of the dossier are borne out by their own investigation.
Untruth/Exaggeration Count: 3 (at least)
5. “What ever happened to the Server, at the center of so much Corruption, that the Democratic National Committee REFUSED to hand over to the hard charging (except in the case of Democrats) FBI? They broke into homes & offices early in the morning, but were afraid to take the Server?”
This one is, mostly, accurate! The FBI confirmed that the DNC repeatedly rejected their requests to turn over the email server that had been penetrated by someone allegedly affiliated with the Russians.
Trump’s reference to the raids conducted by the FBI on the homes and offices of people like former campaign chairman Paul Manafort and Trump personal attorney Michael Cohen misses the mark, however. Federal law enforcement did not break into these homes. They conducted raids based on search warrants — and entirely legal process based on, among other things, probable cause.
Untruth/Exaggeration Count: 1

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“What we got here is a failure to communicate”. This one of the most remembered lines from “Cool Hand Luke”, we currently have a massive miscommunication or under communication issue across the country. The widely accessible media information is now divided into so called “fake News” and real news. It seem that the majority of  “fake news” comes from on air personalities who are not journalists but more provocateurs who comment on current events under the guise of relaying true events. It is unfortunate that our TOTUS et al have used these outlets as purveyors of facts rather than the generators of biased and single sided information based on alternate facts. These semi news organizations have and probably will continue to garner support from folks who want to believe salacious and biased information rather that what is true. The failure is not so much in the communication but more the skewing of the information to present a particular sense of the real information that is available elsewhere. It is unfortunate that our CIC has not grown into the job and probably will not given the past two years of this administration. There is a fine line between Governing and ruling, since this is not a Monarchy, there should be no line to navigate just a willingness to have factual and realistic  conversations about administering a culturally diverse country. There is no one size fits all in this and apparently TOTUS does not understand that.

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The current hearings on Russian interference, omissions and misdirected Governance have grabbed the headlines for too long. In the background of all of this are the real issues where our majority party is trying to strip any rational programs that benefit the oft quoted (without permission) “American People”. The ACA which only required the correct actions of tweaking it (as Legislators should have done) is in danger of being replaced or ruined by the less than candid people we elected to serve(?). The way it should be or at inception was supposed to be, legislators were (are) supposed to represent the people who elected them not themselves. The personal agenda of a representative is not why they are elected (or is it?). What has happened over the years is the manipulation of information that inflames the public to win an election and blame other people for any adversities. We now have a sitting President whose incompetence in the office is being used to stretch the American people over a barrel and hoping we will like it. These are tactics that have been used before and too many of us accepted it because we thought (or were told) that we could do nothing about it. If you are a registered voter you need to vote based on facts, not opinion. If you are not a registered voter, you need to register no matter what your political persuasion maybe. In this age of information it is difficult to determine what is correct and what is not however if you look at several  sources of information you will find the truth among them and become an informed voter. Keep in mind that modern politics is like a popularity contest with the biggest LIE being the contestants. Get informed and the lies do not look the same. Lets not do what our politicians do, that is “blame someone else”

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If the banks and insurance companies were more trustworthy there would be no need for Dodd Frank or Volcker. Our Dupublicans do not have the interests of the oft quoted American people in mind when the legislate.MA

WASHINGTON, June 8 (Reuters) – The U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday voted largely along party lines to replace the 2010 Dodd-Frank Wall Street reform law, a move that is expected to die in the Senate but open the door to revamping or eliminating regulations that came out of the 2007-09 financial crisis.
The bill, called the CHOICE act, was approved by a vote of 233-to-186. Authored by House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling, a Republican, it gives banks a choice between complying with Dodd-Frank or holding onto more capital.
It also restructures the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, created under Dodd-Frank to guard individuals against fraud in lending. Democrats are fiercely opposed to restructuring the CFPB.
The U.S. Senate is not expected to take up the bill in its entirety, even though it has the backing of President Donald Trump, a Republican, largely because of the threat that Democrats will use a filibuster to stall it.
The Congressional Budget Office, a non-partisan evaluator of legislation, estimates the bill would save the federal government $24 billion over a decade, mostly due to the lifting of the government’s authority to step in and unwind failing institutions.
The legislation also rescinds the Volcker rule that limits the type of trading banks can do with their own money and the ability of government regulators to designate non-bank institutions, mainly insurance companies, as “systemically important,” which triggers increased oversight and requirements to hold more capital.
(Reporting by Lisa Lambert and Sarah N. Lynch; Editing by Leslie Adler)

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Why would a liar be concerned about being truthful about campaign promises? The current and administration has a proven track record of stretching and subverting the truth on a regular basis. We have heard and seen a steady stream of untruths coming from our White House. The campaign promises that are being acted upon appeases a small group of people and are just another set of lies as those promises in reality cannot be kept or accomplished. There will be no return of lost jobs in coal and many other industries. The future of this country is in renewable energy and other related technologies, some of which require retraining. It would appear to me that the rational line to follow is education but we have Betsy De Vos instead. Trump has selected some of the worst people to serve in his cabinet. These people on the surface are not bad  people however they are ill-informed or under informed as to the issues their respective posts are facing. Mr. Trump for all of his rhetoric is no more than a child with too much power and cannot stay on topic long enough to understand or reason out a proper solution especially if it takes more than 140 characters. He is depending on the more radical ideas of his staff and that affects all of us now and in the future. The recent incidents in England caused him to push for his “muslin ban” with no information as to who committed these crimes. His withdrawal from the Paris climate accord again with no understanding of the effects of that action. These two examples are just indicative of the President’s inability or lack of desire to understand his  position (United States)  will be our burden for many years to came. He is doing what he has done in business, make thing happen because he promised and not taking the long range effects into consideration. Mr. Trump is setting us on a path of long time recovery from his administration. His base will suffer along with the rest of us but could conceivably not understand that their vote is why we are in this situation now and in the future. What we have at this time is a Presidency that cannot  succeed due to a lack of information related to the real world. This Presidency will put us more at risk than we have ever been, Why?, because it is built on lies!

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Rick Newman
Yahoo Finance   June 1,  2017
Coal miners and alienated workers just trumped corporate America.
By canceling America’s participation in the 2015 Paris climate agreement, President Trump snubbed many of the nation’s biggest businesses. Corporate giants including Exxon (XOM), General Electric (GE), Apple (AAPL), Microsoft (MSFT) and Alphabet (GOOGL) urged Trump to stick with the agreement, which nearly every other country in the world has signed on to. Tesla (TSLA) CEO Elon Musk said he’ll quit as an informal White House adviser on account of Trump’s decision to withdraw. The only major businesses supporting Trump’s move are energy firms dependent on coal and oil.
“The Paris accord is very unfair to the United States,” Trump declared at the White House on June 1. He claimed the agreement imposes “draconian financial and economic burdens” on the United State, while linking it to the loss of nearly 3 million jobs–a claim economists strongly dispute. Trump did say he was open to re-entering the Paris agreement under different terms, leaving some wiggle room amid the criticism he is sure to get for the decision.
Withdrawing from the deal probably won’t be as catastrophic for business or the climate as overheated news coverage might suggest. The Paris deal relies on voluntary reductions in carbon emissions, according to standards each nation sets for itself. Countries can change their standards or simply not abide by them. Enforcement is weak, at best. And market incentives to adopt cleaner energy are becoming stronger, in some cases obviating the need for government incentives or mandates.
A headache for American businesses
But abstaining from a global agreement embraced by every other developed economy is a headache for American businesses all the same. Multinational companies want to sell their goods and services everywhere, which is easier when their home country is following the same agenda, more or less, as other countries they want to sell to. The Paris agreement will likely spur spending on new climate-friendly technologies, and US firms want a cut of that as well. They could lose out to foreign firms whose home governments do more to cultivate such technologies.
By appeasing America firsters and legacy industries such as coal, Trump has obviously fulfilled a campaign promise, while demonstrating solidarity with workers stuck in fading 20th century industries. But that will do nothing to increase demand for dirty coal or create jobs in industries the free market is closing the books on anyway. Natural gas burns much cleaner than coal and is nearly as cheap, thanks in large part to America’s fracking revolution. Pollution-free solar power is becoming cost-competitive without any need for government incentives. States such as California and many municipalities have their own reasons to encourage the use of renewables and cleaner-burning fuels, regardless of what Trump wants. That’s why Exxon and many other oil companies favor the Paris agreement—it helps them gain a foothold in the energy market that is slowly but surely replacing carbon.
Trump probably could have found different ways to help the beleaguered coal industry—powerful federal incentives to draw companies to coal country, say—while keeping American firms under the Paris umbrella. But he disregarded the pleas from corporate America, with no apparent concern for whether that could impede economic growth or cost American jobs. At some point business leaders must rightfully ask whether Trump represents their interests or not.
Trump rode to Washington on a pro-business platform, but his actions in office haven’t been so business-friendly. He has left health insurers and other companies in the medical industry deeply uncertain about the business climate they face, since he has vowed to dismantle the Affordable Care Act without an obvious replacement. Insurers are bailing out of ACA markets where they can’t make money, a problem that existed before Trump took office but has since gotten worse.
Trump has threatened the auto industry with tariffs and other punishments (and consumers with higher car prices) if they don’t create more American jobs. He has lambasted pharmaceutical firms for their high prices. His threat to tear up the North American Free Trade Agreement would roil thousands of business that rely on those trading relationships. He may still seek tariffs on Chinese imports, as he has frequently threatened, which would upend supply lines for many other US companies.
Offsetting all of this, from a CEO’s perspective, is the promise of tax cuts and deregulation, two of Trump’s top priorities. Tax cuts could directly boost corporate profits and stock prices along with them. Deregulation could lower the cost of doing business, which is almost as good as a boost in net income.
But Trump obviously faces difficult challenges getting major legislation through Congress, and he’s adding to the burden with controversies such as the Russia investigation, weakening his political hand and overburdening Congress. It’s now unlikely Congress will pass any kind of tax reform in 2017, and the longer it drifts toward next year’s fall election season, the less likely it becomes. Trump has undone some minor regulations with executive orders, but major pruning would require Congressional action, and that is nowhere to be seen.
Take tax cuts and deregulation away, and Trump looks more like a self-preserving political boss playing favorites than a businessman-president. He favors downtrodden industries on their way out over ascendant industries such as technology and renewable energy, because that’s where his “base” resides. He talks up the need for stronger growth while explaining away political decisions that could impede growth. And he accepts symbolic wins that save a few endangered jobs without talking at all about how to create and secure the jobs of the future. Eventually, we’ll need them, because you can’t prop up the jobs of the past forever.
Confidential tip line:

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This posting indicates the results of a current trend in the White House regarding European relationships. This mindset can leave this country more vulnerable than ever as information sharing could diminish.MA.
Isolationism refers to America’s longstanding reluctance to become involved in European alliances and wars. Isolationists held the view that America’s perspective on the world was different from that of European societies and that America could advance the cause of freedom and democracy by means other than war.
American isolationism did not mean disengagement from the world stage. Isolationists were not averse to the idea that the United States should be a world player and even further its territorial, ideological and economic interests, particularly in the Western Hemisphere.
The colonial period

The isolationist perspective dates to colonial days. The colonies were populated by many people who had fled from Europe, where there was religious persecution, economic privation and war. Their new homeland was looked upon as a place to make things better than the old ways. The sheer distance and rigors of the voyage from Europe tended to accentuate the remoteness of the New World from the Old. The roots of isolationism were well established years before independence, notwithstanding the alliance with France during the War for Independence.
Thomas Paine crystallized isolationist notions in his work Common Sense, which presents numerous arguments for shunning alliances. Paine’s tract exerted so much political influence that the Continental Congress strove against striking an alliance with France and acquiesced only when it appeared probable that the war for independence could not be won without one.
George Washington in his Farewell Address placed the accent on isolationism in a manner that would be long remembered:
“The great rule of conduct for us, in regard to foreign nations, is in extending our commercial relations, to have with them as little political connection as possible. Europe has a set of primary interests, which to us have none, or a very remote relation. Hence she must be engaged in frequent controversies the causes of which are essentially foreign to our concerns. Hence, therefore, it must be unwise in us to implicate ourselves, by artificial ties, in the ordinary vicissitudes of her politics, or the ordinary combinations and collisions of her friendships or enmities.”
Washington was promulgating a perspective that was already venerable and accepted by many. The United States terminated its alliance with France, after which America’s third president, Thomas Jefferson, admonished in his inaugural address, “peace, commerce, and honest friendship with all nations, entangling alliances with none.”
The 19th century
The United States remained politically isolated all through the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th, an unusual feat in western history. Historians have attributed the fact to a geographical position at once separate and far removed from Europe.
During the 1800s, the United States spanned North America and commenced to piece together an empire in the Caribbean and the Pacific — without departing from the traditional perspective. It fought the War of 1812
the Mexican War, and the Spanish-American War without joining alliances or fighting in Europe.
The isolationist point of view was still viable in 1823 when President James Monroe gave voice to what would later be termed the Monroe Doctrine, “In the wars of the European powers, in matters relating to themselves, we have never taken part, nor does it comport with our policy, so to do.”
Nevertheless, pressures were mounting abroad that would undercut and demolish that policy near the mid-20th century. The advent of German and Japanese expansionism would threaten and later nearly snuff out the contented aloofness enjoyed by the United States. The United States’ occupation of the Philippines during the Spanish-American War thrust U.S. interests into the far western Pacific Ocean — Imperial Japan’s sphere of interest. Such improved transportation and communication as steamships, undersea cable, and radio linked the two continents. The growth of shipping and foreign trade slowly enhanced America’s world role.
There also were basic changes at home. The historic ascendancy of urban-based business, industry, and finance, and the sidelining of rural and small-town America — the bastion of isolationism — contributed to its eventual demise.
World War I
Germany’s unfettered submarine warfare against American ships during World War I provoked the U.S. into abandoning the neutrality it had upheld for so many years. The country’s resultant participation in World War I against the Central Powers marked its first major departure from isolationist policy. When the war ended, however, the United States was quick to leave behind its European commitment. Regardless of President Woodrow Wilson’s efforts, the Senate repudiated the Treaty of Versailles that ended the war, and the United States failed to become a member of the League of Nations.
Indeed, isolationism would persist for a few more decades. During the 1920s, American foreign affairs took a back seat. In addition, America tended to insulate itself in terms of trade. Tariffs were imposed on foreign goods to shield U.S. manufacturers.
America turned its back on Europe by restricting the number of immigrants permitted into the country. Until World War I, millions of people, mostly from Europe, had come to America to seek their fortune and perhaps flee poverty and persecution. Britons and Irishmen, Germans and Jews constituted the biggest groups. In 1921 the relatively liberal policy ended and quotas were introduced. By 1929 only 150,000 immigrants per year were allowed in.
During the 1920s and 1930s, the preponderance of Americans remained opposed to enmeshment in Europe’s alliances and wars. Isolationism was solid in hinterland and small-town America in the Midwest and Great Plains states, and among Republicans. It claimed numerous sympathizers among Irish- and German-Americans. William Jennings Bryan of Nebraska, Robert M. La Follette of Wisconsin, and George W. Norris of Nebraska were among western agrarian progressives who argued fervently against involvement. Assuming an us-versus-them stance, they castigated various eastern, urban elites for their engagement in European affairs.
World War II
The year 1940 signaled a final turning point for isolationism. German military successes in Europe and the Battle of Britain prompted nationwide American rethinking about its posture toward the war. If Germany and Italy established hegemony in Europe and Africa, and Japan swept East Asia, many believed that the Western Hemisphere might be next. Even if America managed to repel invasions, its way of life might wither if it were forced to become a garrison state. By the autumn of 1940, many Americans believed it was necessary to help defeat the Axis — even if it meant open hostilities.

Many others still backed the noninterventionist America First Committee in 1940 and 1941, but isolationists failed to derail the Roosevelt administration’s plans to aid targets of Axis aggression with means short of war. Most Americans opposed any actual declaration of war on the Axis countries, but everything abruptly changed when Japan naval forces sneak-attacked Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. Germany and Italy declared war on the United States four days later. America galvanized itself for full-blown war against the Axis powers.
The demise of isolationism
The isolationist point of view did not completely disappear from American discourse, but never again did it figure prominently in American policies and affairs. Countervailing tendencies that would outlast the war were at work. During the war, the Roosevelt administration and other leaders inspired Americans to favor the establishment of the United Nations (1945), and following the war, the threat embodied by the Soviet Union under Joseph Stalin dampened any comeback of isolationism.
The postwar world environment, in which the United States played a leading role, would change with the triumph of urban industry and finance, expanded education and information systems, advanced military technology, and leadership by internationalists. A few leaders would rise to speak of a return to America’s traditional policies of nonintervention, but in reality, traditional American isolationism was obsolete.
– – – Books You May Like Include: —-
FDR and Chief Justice Hughes: The President, the Supreme Court, and the Epic Battle Over the New Deal by James F. Simon.
The author of acclaimed books on the bitter clashes between presidents and chief justices—Jefferson and Marshall, Lincoln and Taney.

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The past 10 years in politics have shown the dirtiest side of politics since McCarthyism.
The lies we are told about candidates, proposed laws and laws that are passed have been so outrageous at times that it is small wonder that a Trump presidency came about. Politics appears to be more about lies innuendo and insults than facts. There have been stories about candidates that prove to be true and just as many not. Without going into the many lies and insults, lets just go to what we know is true:

Donald Trump is a consummate liar.

Our Congress members are not to be trusted.

Donald Trump appealed to the anger of many of us who have gone unheard by their Congress.

The small group of Racists in our midst have latched on to Trump as a champion because he doesn’t know any better and loves to be adored at any cost.

Donald Trump is so insecure that his method of dealing with problems (and non problems) is an insult and or a lie.

The Spokes people for Totus seem to be uninformed and will do what ever he says out of fear.

The over coverage of the signing of Executive orders is more a photo op than anything serious as those orders will be at some point repealed or if not cause great harm to us.

Our Congress is using Totus as cover for their own nefarious actions.

Our Congress’ healthcare is not affected by the ACA or the new Health care act.

There are so many more items that can be added that I would spend the next several days listing them. It is the duty of each reader to pay attention to the real news (not Fox) to determine what our Congress is doing to us as they are surely not doing anything for us.

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