What To Watch For In President Trump’s Address To Congress

“It’s T-Day” as one trader put it this morning. President Trump will address a joint session of Congress Tuesday night for the first time as president in a much anticipated speech with a lot of hyped-up hope hanging on it.
As The Hill notes, the speech isn’t an official State of the Union – that will come next year – but it’s a chance for Trump to set out his legislative priorities after a tumultuous first month that has at times rattled congressional Republicans.
Here are five things to watch for in Trump’s speech…
Will Trump stay dark or go light?
The president’s first major address to the American people offered a grim view of the country he was elected to lead. At his inauguration, Trump painted a picture of a nation in decline, marked by ‘American carnage’ such as ‘rusted-out factories scattered like tombstones across the landscape’ and marauding criminal gangs plaguing major cities. Stephen Miller, the influential White House aide who wrote that speech, has been tasked with authoring this one, too. But White House officials say the address to Congress will present ‘an optimistic vision’ aimed at how his administration will help Americans of all races, parties and economic status. He will also stress how his early actions, while controversial, have fulfilled campaign promises. Offering a positive message that appeals to people outside his base could help bring together a country that remains deeply divided over a presidential election in which Trump lost the popular vote. It would also break with the style that got Trump elected. And previous ‘pivots’ telegraphed by his team have not panned out. Before the inaugural address, White House press secretary Sean Spicer, then a spokesman for the Trump transition effort, told reporters it would focus on ‘areas where he can unite the country.’

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Feb 28, 2017.

Why the Middle Class Should Love Trump’s Budget Proposal This Week

President Donald Trump’s budget proposal – due sometime this week – will spare cuts to big social welfare programs like Social Security and Medicare.
That’s according to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin yesterday…
Mnuchin told FOX Business on Sunday morning that the new White House administration will not touch entitlement programs for now and that people should not ‘expect to see that as part’ of Trump’s financial plans moving forward.
Mnuchin’s comment fell squarely in line with promises Trump made on the campaign trail about not cutting into Social Security or Medicare for seniors and not nixing Medicaid healthcare for the poor.
‘We are very focused on other aspects and that’s what’s very important to us. And that’s the president’s priority,’ Mnuchin added.
Then Mnuchin brought up another key campaign promise regarding Trump’s future budget plans set to appeal to middle-class America…

This post was published at Wall Street Examiner on February 27, 2017.

‘I Didn’t Say The Media Is The Enemy, I Said The Fake Media” Trump Tells Breitbart

In his first official interview with Breitbart, the controversial site formerly run by his chief advisor Steve Bannon, President Trump clarified his hostile stance towards the mass media, explaining that what he actually opposes is media that spreads ‘fake news’, a term ironically coined by the conventional press to describe the “alt-right” media which fails to follow the conventional narrative. He also outlined some of the topics he’ll touch upon at his upcoming address to Congress.
‘I didn’t say the media is the enemy – I said the ‘fake media’,’ Trump told Breitbart in the exclusive interview on Monday according to the posted transcript.
‘There’s a difference. The fake media is the opposition party. The fake media is the enemy of the American people. There’s tremendous fake media out there. Tremendous fake stories. The problem is the people that aren’t involved in the story don’t know that.’ In recent attacks against the press, Trump has marked the New York Times as an example of ‘failing’ media that ‘writes lies,’ stressing that the outlet’s approval ratings are already in serious decline due to this stance.
Trump also stressed that competition is essential for the media to work properly, but did not comment specifically on the possible merger between AT&T and Time Warner, which if successful would unite a handful of news networks under one owner and which was criticized by Trump during pre-election days.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Feb 28, 2017.

Washington Post: fake-news partner with the CIA

Let’s frame the situation in simple terms. You work for a company that has a very lucrative partnership with a big-time money man. That money man gives you a piece of information and tells you it’s important.
What you do every day is spread information. That’s how you earn your living.
Are you going to take that piece of info from the money man and spread it, or are you going to question it and research it and shoot back hard-edged questions to the money man?
If you’re a loyal employee, and if you want to keep your job, and if you’re smart enough to understand how things work, you’re going to spread the money man’s piece of info and keep your head down.
You’re not going to worry your pretty little head about whether the piece of info is true.
Unless you’re a complete dolt, you certainly aren’t going to spread the info with a disclaimer stating that your source, the money man, has a major business contract with your company.

This post was published at Jon Rappoport on February 28, 2017.

SYRIA: Repeat Cycle, MI6, CIA, ‘Regime Change’ Operations

21st Century Wire says…
Regime change policy in Syria is not a new concept, it is, in fact, a repeat cycle, standard foreign policy for the US administration and its partners in the UK, particularly where oil interests are concerned. The following article on Washington Blog gives a brief summary of previous assassination attempts and covert operations conducted inside Syria by the US deep state players and their Congress talking heads. It is a history of manipulation, puppet regimes and violation of International law that has never ended, leading to the 2011 dirty war on Syria that is still raging in 2017.
The U. S. Carried Out Regime Change In Syria In 1949 … and Tried Again In 1957, 1986, 1991 and 2011-Today
‘The CIA backed a right-wing coup in Syria in 1949. Douglas Little, Professor, Department of Clark University History professor Douglas Little notes:
‘Recently declassified records… confirm that beginning on November 30, 1948, [CIA operative Stephen] Meade met secretly with Colonel Zaim at least six times to discuss the ‘possibility [of an] army supported dictatorship.’ [‘Cold War and Covert Action: The United States and Syria, 1945-1958,’ Middle East Journal, Winter 1990, p. 55]

This post was published at 21st Century Wire on FEBRUARY 28, 2017.

Evercore ISI: “Trump Budget Not Happening”

In a note by Evercore ISI‘s Terry Haines and Ernie Tedeschi, the analyst duo pours cold water on Trumps’ budget proposal before it has been even formalized and confidently predicts that “Trump budget not happening” adding that the most likely outcome is that “Congress will modestly hike defense and non-defense spending.”
Below is a summary of their thinking:
President Trump’s budget will not be submitted to Congress for a couple of weeks but already the speculation about it has begun with press stories about deep cuts to domestic spending used to fund increases in defense spending. Investors should understand that any president’s budget submission is inherently a political document; that Congress is not bound to follow it; and that this Congress will not follow it. We continue to see the likely result of the federal budget process as a continuation of the modest increases in both defense and nondefense discretionary spending agreed to on a bipartisan basis over the past four years. Any increase in defense spending is likely to be small and matched by similar small increases in nondefense spending.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Feb 28, 2017.

Europe: Laughing At The Messenger

Once again, an American has pointed to a failing in European society, and instead of focusing on the problem identified or even admitting that there is a problem, the European response has been to point at the American and blame him for creating the problem he has in fact merely identified. We are being given an accurate representation of a serious problem. If the response to every problem is denial, and the response to anyone pointing to the problem is opprobrium, legal threats or hilarity, it suggests that Europe is not going to make the softer-landing it could yet give itself in addressing these issues. It might make us feel better, but every time we attack or laugh at the messenger, rather than addressing the message, we ensure that our own future will be less funny. How can one excavate the minds of so many European officials and the extraordinary mental gymnastics of denial to which they have become prone?
One of the finest demonstrations of this trend occurred in January 2015, after France was assailed by Islamist gunmen in the offices of the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo and then in a Jewish supermarket. In the days after those attacks, Fox News in the U. S. ran an interview with a guest who said that Paris, and France, as a whole, had “no-go zones” where the authorities — including emergency services — did not dare to go. In the wake of these comments, the Mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, chose to make a stand. She announced that she was suing Fox News because the “honour of Paris” was at stake.
It appeared that Mayor Hidalgo was rightly concerned about the image of her city around the world, presumably worrying in particular about the potential effects on tourism.

This post was published at Zero Hedge on Feb 28, 2017.

Prostitutes, False Billing, a $3 Billion Lawsuit: Oscar Mixup is the Least of PwC’s Problems

PwC, formerly known as PricewaterhouseCoopers, is one of the Big Four accounting firms created in 1998 from the merger of Price Waterhouse and Coopers & Lybrand. Its namesakes are more than a century old. Unfortunately, PwC will henceforth be known as the accounting firm that provided presenters Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway with the wrong red envelope at Sunday night’s Oscars. That mistake created a chaotic scene where two producers of the film ‘La La Land’ were initially allowed to give speeches on stage for Best Film, then stunned with the news that ‘Moonlight’ had actually won the award. At one point, producers and casts of both films stood in dazed confusion on the stage.
According to the official report thus far, a PwC partner, Brian Cullinan, mistakenly handed the Best Actress award envelope (Emma Stone for ‘La La Land’) to Beatty, instead of the envelope for Best Film, leading to Dunaway announcing it as Best Film.
In a YouTube video (see below) made by PwC to celebrate its long history of tabulating votes for the Oscars, the words ‘Integrity’ and ‘Accuracy’ flash upon the screen. But in multiple current court actions, PwC’s integrity and accuracy are being challenged in very serious ways.
One court action is close to the home of the Oscars. The Los Angeles City Attorney, Michael N. Feuer, brought an action against PwC in 2015 on behalf of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP). It initially alleged that when PwC submitted a bid proposal to update the forty year old billing and customer care system for the LADWP it ‘marked the beginning of a pattern of intentional deception, breach of commitments, and an almost endless litany of attempts to deny or cover up those acts or omissions by PwC that is virtually breathtaking in both its scope and its audacity.’

This post was published at Wall Street On Parade on February 28, 2017.