What's Your Answer?


Since 2007, I have met with my meditation teacher, Nelly Kaufer, at least once a month. Sometimes we meditate, sometimes we discuss life through the lens of Buddhism. 

Today we talked about the "Three Poisons" or sources of evil: greed, hate, and delusion (ignorance). From the Sanskrit, "lobha," "dvesha," and "moha."

Ask yourself: What percentage of Trump's tweets, pronouncements, or policies fall under these three categories?


The Economy Is NOT Better Under Trump

So Trumpers are going on about the fabulous economy under Spanky. Below are job numbers I just copied from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Obama's are better (even though right-wingers claim the economy was a "disaster" during his presidency). Plus, Obama's Fed kept interest rates at historic lows, millions more gained health insurance coverage, and the deficit was pared by two-thirds. THIS AFTER HE INHERITED AN ECONOMY IN SHAMBLES -- THE BIGGEST MESS SINCE THE GREAT DEPRESSION.

Republican/Trump policies have already resulted in fewer Americans having access to health insurance -- and this is before they start "reforming Medicare" or block-granting Medicaid, which will put millions more at risk. 

The deficits they have created AND PUT INTO MOTION are monstrous. But who cares about future economic pain when you can put tax cuts for millionaires on a credit card? Seen any Tea Party rallies against the debt lately?

And any step-up in real wages is due mainly to state increases in the minimum wage; if Democrats had their way, we would have a significant increase in the federal minimum wage and a Labor Department and NLRB that actually put workers' interests first. Yet too many white working-class voters have bought the line that conservatives and Wall Street millionaires suddenly have main street interests at heart. It is another Trump con job.

So here are the jobs created for Obama's last six years in office. It took nearly two years for the job losses of the Bush recession to be staunched. 

2011: 2,090,000; 2012: 2,151,000; 2013: 2,296,000; 2014: 3,005,000; 2015: 2,712,000; 2016: 2,344,000. Average jobs added per year: 2,433,000.

Here are Trump's numbers (and I would argue this is largely a CONTINUATION of the Obama jobs trend):

2017: 2,188; First four months of 2018: 767,000. Average jobs added per year: 2,244,000.

Bottom line: Do not let Republicans drive the narrative that an economic miracle is happening under Trump. In fact, the effect of these unprecedented deficits will negatively affect interest rates and inflation; any relief middle Americans might see from the new tax code will be wiped out by those two factors alone.

And I haven't even mentioned the consequences of trade wars, the inevitable increase in income/wealth inequality from a far less progressive tax code (another conservative ploy to transfer wealth from the Middle Class to the top 5%) or the increased health costs from dirtier air, water, and soil.

After reading this post on my FB page, my friend, Marianne Basford, had the perfect response:

"Carl, it would be great if you could edit your accurate research into something that could be put on a hat. And then put the hat on a popular celebrity. And then make the hat available at Walmart. Put a cute cartoon animal on it. You could do another hat with the same message but using all emojis to be sold at college campuses."

Sadly true.