The Pronk Pops Show 1306, August 14, 2019, Story 1: President Trump Delays Tariffs on Chinese Goods to After Christmas — Videos — Story 2: Normal Flight Operations Resume Again in Hong Kong — Videos — Story 3: Progressives Try To Panic American People Over Inverted Yield Curve Leading To Recession — U.S. Economy is Growing — Missy Higgins Singing — Videos — Story 4: President Trump Energy Speech at Shell Pennsylvania Petrochemicals Complex in Monaca, Pennsylvania 

Posted on August 15, 2019. Filed under: 2020 Republican Candidates, Addiction, Addiction, American History, Banking System, Blogroll, Breaking News, Budgetary Policy, Business, Cartoons, China, Coal, Coal, Communications, Congress, Corruption, Countries, Culture, Currencies, Donald J. Trump, Donald J. Trump, Donald J. Trump, Donald Trump, Economics, Economics, Education, Elections, Empires, Employment, Energy, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, Free Trade, Freedom of Speech, Government, Government Dependency, Government Spending, Health, Health Care, Health Care Insurance, History, House of Representatives, Human, Human Behavior, Illegal Immigration, Immigration, Independence, Labor Economics, Language, Law, Legal Immigration, Life, Liquid Natural Gas (LNG), Lying, Media, Monetary Policy, National Interest, Natural Gas, Natural Gas, News, Nuclear, Oil, Oil, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Polls, President Trump, Private Sector Unions, Progressives, Public Corruption, Public Sector Unions, Radio, Raymond Thomas Pronk, Regulation, Resources, Rule of Law, Scandals, Security, Senate, Social Science, Social Sciences, Solar, Success, Tax Policy, Taxation, Taxes, Trade Policy, U.S. Dollar, Unemployment, Unions, United States of America, Videos, Violence, Wealth, Welfare Spending, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

 

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The Pronk Pops Show Podcasts

Pronk Pops Show 1306 August 14, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1305 August 12, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1304 August 8, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1303 August 7, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1302 August 6, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1301 August 5, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1300 August 1, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1299 July 31, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1298 July 30, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1297 July 29, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1296 July 25, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1295 July 24, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1294 July 23, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1293 July 22, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1292 July 18, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1291 July 17, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1290 July 16, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1289 July 15, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1288 July 11, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1287 July 10, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1286 July 9, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1285 July 8, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1284 July 2, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1283 July 1, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1282 June 27, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1281 June 26, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1280 June 25, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1279 June 24, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1278 June 20, 2019 

Pronk Pops Show 1277 June 19, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1276 June 18, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1275 June 17, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1274 June 13, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1273 June 12, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1272 June 11, 2019

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Pronk Pops Show 1267 May 30, 2019

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Pronk Pops Show 1265 May 28, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1264 May 24, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1263 May 23, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1262 May 22, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1261 May 21, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1260 May 20, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1259 May 16, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1258 May 15, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1257 May 14, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1256 May 13, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1255 May 10, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1254 May 9, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1253 May 8, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1252 May 7, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1251 May 6, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1250 May 3, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1249 May 2, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1248 May 1, 2019

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Story 1: President Trump Delays Tariffs on Chinese Goods to After Christmas — Americans Would Have Been Paying The Tariff or Tax — Videos —

Trump Blinked With China Tariff Delay, Exante Data’s Setser Says

Trump says China tariffs delayed for ‘Christmas season’

China Is Changing Strategy in Trade War, Says LSE’s Jin

 

Trump CAVES on China tariffs and puts off levies on laptops, cell phones and toys until after Christmas shopping season following ‘very good call’ with Beijing – in move set to boost faltering stock market

  • The Trump administration announced Tuesday morning that is delaying tariffs on Chinese-manufactured goods like laptops and cell phones until Dec. 15
  • Trump’s trade office says that certain products ‘will not face additional tariffs of 10 percent’ due to health, safety or national security concerns 
  • Some of e products it listed were cell phones, laptop computers, video game consoles, computer monitors, footwear and clothingth
  • USTR said it will post a list of items that are being excluded on its website
  • It announced the postponement shortly after the the stock market opened, and the Dow jumped nearly 500 points within minutes of the news
  • Donald Trump has not commented directly but hinted n a tweet that the action was intended to get China to move forward with large agricultural orders

The Trump administration announced Tuesday morning that is delaying tariffs on Chinese-manufactured goods like laptops and cell phones until Dec. 15, when price hikes from the penalties won’t drive up the price of popular Christmas presents.

Trump’s trade office says that certain products ‘will not face additional tariffs of 10 percent’ due to health, safety or national security concerns.

However, the categories of goods that are being protected suggest that Trump was concerned about the consumer pricing index and the billions of dollars in value of this month’s stock losses.

The U.S. trade office announced the postponement shortly after the the stock market opened in the United States, causing the Dow Jones Industrial Average jump nearly 500 points within minutes.

That excitement tempered off as the day wore on. The Dow leveled out at a 400-point rise that was close to 1,000 points off from where it was a month ago when it started to drop.

Speaking to reporters on the tarmac in New Jersey, before a day trip to Pennsylvania from his vacation, the president defended his tough-on-China stance, saying that other presidents should have tightened the screws on Beijing, too.

He said that he backed off on tariffs because he had a ‘very good call with China.

The Trump administration announced Tuesday morning that is delaying tariffs on Chinese-manufactured goods like laptops and cell phones until Dec. 15. Donald Trump is seen here at the White House the previous Friday

The Trump administration announced Tuesday morning that is delaying tariffs on Chinese-manufactured goods like laptops and cell phones until Dec. 15. Donald Trump is seen here at the White House the previous Friday

The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped nearly 500 points within minutes of the statement

The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped nearly 500 points within minutes of the statement

Donald Trump said he’d impose a 10 percent penalty on $300 billion in untaxed goods on Sept. 1, if China continued drag out trade talks. 

U.S. negotiators say a deal was nearly finished, when Beijing backed away from major provisions.

A new round of talks was scheduled for September, however Trump drove down skittish markets with claims last week that the meetings could be cancelled.

On Tuesday morning, USTR announced it was loosening the noose on China, specifically on items in the tech and and clothing manufacturing industries.

‘Products in this group include, for example, cell phones, laptop computers, video game consoles, certain toys, computer monitors, and certain items of footwear and clothing,’ according to a United States Trade Representative statement.

USTR said it will post a list of items that are being excluded on its website today.

The president continued to defend his position in a Tuesday morning in tweet that claimed consumers have not paid the price for the 25 percent tariffs on $250 billion of other Chinese items that he’s put in place.

Trump did not mention the policy shift in that tweet or one that he sent a half-hour after the the USTR announcement, however, he hinted that unfilled agricultural orders were part of the calculus.

He said of China’s retracted promises to purchase more American agricultural goods: ‘Maybe this will be different!’ 

Less than an hour prior, the president had been ripping China. He blasted Beijing for financial tinkering the U.S. has blasted as currency manipulation while promising American buyers that tariffs wouldn’t affect everyday product pricing.

‘Through massive devaluation of their currency and pumping vast sums of money into their system, the tens of billions of dollars that the U.S. is receiving is a gift from China. Prices not up, no inflation. Farmers getting more than China would be spending. Fake News won’t report!’ he said.

‘Later, at a manufacturing event in Pennsylvania, the president said in an extended riff on China that it had ‘ripped off our country for years’ and taken advantage of World Trade Organization rules that allow the nation to be classified as a developing economy.

‘And I’m being nice when I say took advantage,’ he argued.

He recounted his threat to leave the WTO, unless it started adjudicating cases in his favor.

‘And it’s only because of attitude,’ he said of a change in behavior. ‘Because we know that they have been screwing us for years.’

He added, ‘And I’d like to use a different word but there’s no word that’s quite as descriptive.’

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7352783/Trump-postpones-new-tariffs-China-months-stock-shares-lose-billions-value.html

 

Story 2: Normal Flight Operations Resume Again in Hong Kong — Videos

 

Normal operations resume at Hong Kong airport as city braces for more protests

Hong Kong’s Airport Authority said normal flight operations would resume on Thursday after pro-democracy protests forced the cancellation of nearly 1,000 flights this week, while the city braced for more mass protests through the weekend.

China reiterated on Wednesday that Hong Kong’s protest movement was “near terrorism” and more street clashes followed ugly and chaotic scenes at the airport on Tuesday, when protesters set upon two men they suspected of being government sympathisers.

Police and protesters faced off again on the streets of the financial hub overnight, with riot officers quickly firing tear gas as their response to demonstrators toughens .

Ten weeks of increasingly violent confrontations between police and protesters have plunged Hong Kong into its worst crisis since it reverted from British to Chinese rule in 1997.

Heightened security would remain at the city’s international airport and the Hong Kong Airport Authority said late on Wednesday an application for protests to be held in the terminal must be made in advance with a “Letter of No Objection” to be obtained from police.

More protests are planned on Friday and over the weekend in different areas of the Chinese-controlled territory.

Protesters have expressed remorse after a peaceful sit-in turned violent at one of the world’s busiest airports earlier this week.

It was not clear whether the violent clashes might have eroded the broad support the movement has so far attracted in Hong Kong. The protests have also hit the city’s faltering economy.

The United States said it was deeply concerned at news of Chinese police forces gathering near the border, urged Hong Kong’s government to respect freedom of speech, and issued a travel advisory urging caution when visiting the city. (Writing by Farah Master Editing by Paul Tait)

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/wires/reuters/article-7358413/Normal-operations-resume-Hong-Kong-airport-city-braces-protests.html

 

Story 3: Progressives Try To Panic American People Over Inverted Yield Curve Leading To Recession — U.S. Economy is Growing — Missy Higgins Singing — Videos

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Missy Higgins – Any Day Now (Live)

Any Day Now

Missy Higgins

How long, how long, how long will we take to come undone?
If you know the answer tell me now and I’ll write up a calendar for our count down.
‘Cause what if what we see is all, is all we’ve got?
Say you’ve kept some fire aside to set light to me some surprising night.
And say you’ve locked some fire away to set light to me some surprising day.
To me some surprising day, any day now
How come, how come, how come I’m now on a road holding out my thumb?
If you know my destination please buy me the fastest car and throw me the keys.
‘Cause what if what we see is all, is all we’ve got?
Say you’ve kept some fire aside to set light to me some surprising night.
And say you’ve locked some fire away to set light to me some surprising day.
‘Cause finger by finger we’re losing grasp and
I’m questioning the reason why nothing beautiful does last
Say you’ve kept some fire aside to set light to me some surprising night.
And say you’ve locked some fire away to set light to me some surprising day,
To me some surprising day any day now.
Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Melissa Higgins
Any Day Now lyrics © Peermusic Publishing, Words & Music A Div Of Big Deal Music LLC

Why Investors Are Obsessed With the Inverted Yield Curve

Fed Must Act on Inverted Yield Curve, Credit Suisse’s Golub Says

What Is An Inverted Yield Curve And How Does It Affect The Stock Market? | NBC News Now

Yield curve inversion does not mean there will be a recession tomorrow, strategist says

Mohamed El-Erian talks yield curve, recession and global economy

President Trump calls Fed Chair Jerome Powell ‘clueless’ and inverted yield curve ‘crazy’

Missy Higgins (9-27-2008) Sugarcane

Sugarcane

Missy Higgins

Baby ballerina’s hiding
Somewhere in the corner
Where the shadow wraps around her
And our torches cannot find her
She will stay there till the morning
Crawl behind us as we are yawning
And she will leave our games
To never be the same
So grow tall, sugarcane
Eat that soil, drink the rain
But know they’ll chase you
If you play their little games
So run, run fast, sugarcane
You see my peep show booth is handy
There’s a one way only mirror
So I can dance here with my hair down
But I don’t see if you get bitter
And there’s a button right beside me
If I happen to want a wall to hide me
If only the ballerina had one too
So grow tall, sugarcane
Eat that soil, drink the rain
But know they’ll chase you
If you play their little games
So run, run fast, sugarcane
And she said, “Always be afraid”
Yes, she said, “Always be afraid”
So grow tall, sugarcane
Eat that soil, drink the rain
But know they’ll chase you
If you play their little games
So run, run fast, sugarcane
Yeah, you’d better run, run fast, sugarcane
Yeah, you’d better run, run fast sugarcane
Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Melissa Higgins
Sugarcane lyrics © Peermusic Publishing

Missy Higgins – Where I Stood (Official Video)

Where I Stood

Missy Higgins

I don’t know what I’ve done
Or if I like what I’ve begun
But something told me to run
And honey, you know me, it’s all or none
There were sounds in my head
Little voices whispering
That I should go and this should end
Oh, and I found myself listening
‘Cause I don’t know who I am, who I am without you
All I know is that I should
And I don’t know if I could stand another hand upon you
All I know is that I should
‘Cause she will love you more than I could
She who dares to stand where I stood
See, I thought love was black and white
That it was wrong or it was right
But you aren’t leaving without a fight
And I think, I am just as torn inside
‘Cause I don’t know who I am, who I am without you
All I know is that I should
And I don’t know if I could stand another hand upon you
All I know is that I should
‘Cause she will love you more than I could
She who dares to stand where I stood
And I won’t be far from where you are if ever you should call
You meant more to me than any one I, I’ve ever loved at all
But you taught me how to trust myself
And so I say to you, this is what I have to do
‘Cause I don’t know who I am, who I am without you
All I know is that I should
And I don’t know if I could stand another hand upon you
All I know is that I should
‘Cause she will love you more than I could
She who dares to stand where I stood
She who dares to stand where I stood
Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Melissa Higgins
Where I Stood lyrics © Peermusic Publishing

Kimberley Music – Missy Higgins

Missy Higgins on why she used to break into cemeteries | The Weekly

Missy Higgins & Friends Live

Dow plummets 800 points and 3% in a day amid fears of economic crisis as Treasury yields invert for the first time since the Great Recession

  • Dow Jones plunged more than 800 points on Wednesday on recession fears
  • Yield on the 10-year Treasury note briefly dipped below the two-year yield
  • Known as an ‘inverted yield curve,’ it is a sign investors fear a recession 
  • The past five inverted yield curves have all preceded a recession
  • Trump blasts Fed over rates and calls chairman Jerome Powell ‘clueless’ 

Stocks plunged on Wednesday after the bond market threw up one of its last remaining warning flags on the economy.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury briefly dropped below the two-year Treasury’s yield Wednesday morning, the first time those yields have flipped since 2007. The so-called inversion has correctly predicted many past recessions and is the loudest warning bell yet about a possible recession ahead.

Investors responded by dumping stocks, more than erasing gains from a rally the day before.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down 801 points at 25,479, a loss of 3%, in the largest one-day point drop since October 2018,

A one-day view of the yield spread between the 10-year and two-year Treasury bond shows two brief yield curve inversions when the ratio drops below the red line on Wednesday

Based on the latest available data, the S&P 500 lost 85.72 points, or 2.93%, to 2,840.6, and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 242.42 points, or 3.02%, to 7,773.94.

While the market was falling Wednesday, President Donald Trump took to Twitter to again criticize the Federal Reserve for hampering the U.S. economy by raising rates “far too quickly” last year and not reversing its policy aggressively enough – the Fed cut its key rate by a quarter point last month. 

Trump blasted Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell as ‘clueless’. 

He also defended his trade policy, even though investors remain worried that the trade war between the world’s two largest economies may drag on through the 2020 U.S. election and cause more economic damage.

“We still see a substantial risk that the trade dispute will escalate further,” said Mark Haefele, global chief investment officer at UBS in a note to clients.

‘The relief rally inspired by the Trump administration delaying tariffs on some Chinese imports was short lived – blink and you missed it,’ said Fiona Cincotta, senior market analyst at City Index.

With bond yields falling, banks took heavy losses Wednesday. Lower bond yields are bad for banks because they force interest rates on mortgages and other loans lower, which results in lower profits for banks. Citigroup sank 5.1% and Bank of America gave up 5%.

Trump is seen at a White House meeting last month. He is relying upon a strong economy to bolster his reelection chances, and the latest economic signal is a worrying one

Trump is seen at a White House meeting last month. He is relying upon a strong economy to bolster his reelection chances, and the latest economic signal is a worrying one

Much of the market’s focus was on the U.S. yield curve, which has historically been one of the more reliable recession indicators.

If all this talk about yield curves sounds familiar, it should. Other parts of the curve have already inverted, beginning late last year. But each time, some market watchers cautioned not to make too much of it.

Academics tend to pay the most attention to the spread between the three-month Treasury and the 10-year Treasury, which inverted in the spring. Traders often pay more attention to the two-year and 10-year spread.

Each of the last five times the two-year and 10-year Treasury yields have inverted, a recession has followed.

The average amount of time is around 22 months, according to Raymond James’ Giddis.

The indicator isn’t perfect, though, and it’s given false signals in the past.

Some market watchers also say the yield curve may be a less reliable indicator this time because technical factors may be distorting longer-term yields, such as negative bond yields abroad and the Federal Reserve’s holdings of $3.8 trillion in Treasurys and other investments on its balance sheet.

What is a yield curve inversion?

The yield, or the effective interest rate paid, on a 10-year Treasury bond is usually higher than the yield on a two-year bond — because investors typically want to see a higher return for a longer-term investment.

However, bond yields move in the opposite direction of bond prices, which are driven by demand. When investors clamor for bonds, driving prices up, yields go down.

The inversion of the 10-year and two-year yield curves is a signal that investors are rushing money from stocks into bonds, depressing yields and flipping the return on long- and short-term bonds in a way that appears to make little economic sense.

Data from Credit Suisse going back to 1978 shows:

  • The last five 2-10 inversions have eventually led to recessions.
  • A recession occurs, on average, 22 months following a 2-10 inversion.
  • The S&P 500 is up, on average, 12% one year after a 2-10 inversion.
  • It’s not until about 18 months after an inversion when the stock market usually turns and posts negative returns.

This chart shows the spread between 10-year and two-year Treasury bonds since 1978. The portions below the black line represent yield inversions, and shaded areas are recessions

This chart shows the spread between 10-year and two-year Treasury bonds since 1978. The portions below the black line represent yield inversions, and shaded areas are recessions

Macy’s plunged 11.4%, the sharpest loss in the S&P 500, after it slashed its profit forecast for the year. The retailer’s profit for the latest quarter fell far short of analysts’ forecasts as it was forced to slash prices on unsold merchandise. The grim results from Macy’s sent other retailers sharply lower, too. Nordstrom sank 10% and Kohl’s dropped 11%.

Energy stocks also sank sharply, hurt by another drop in the price of crude oil on worries that a weakening global economy will drag down demand. National Oilwell Varco slumped 7.4% and Schlumberger skidded 6.5%. The price of benchmark U.S. crude slid 3.9% to $54.88 per barrel. Brent crude, the international standard, lost 3.7% to $59.04.

Gold gained $13.70 to $1,515.90 per ounce, close to a six-year high. Investors also bid up shares in mining company Newmont Goldcorp 1.8%.

Overseas, Germany’s DAX dropped 2.3% following the weak German economic data. France’s CAC 40 fell 2.2%, and the FTSE 100 in London lost 1.7%.

In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei 225 rose 1%, the Kospi in South Korea gained 0.7% and the Hang Seng in Hong Kong added 0.1%.

Trader Andrew Silverman works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on Tuesday. The threat of a recession doesn't seem so remote anymore, and stocks sank Wednesday

Trader Andrew Silverman works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on Tuesday. The threat of a recession doesn’t seem so remote anymore, and stocks sank Wednesday

Markets have largely been in a spin cycle since Trump announced on Aug. 1 that he would impose 10% tariffs on about $300 billion in Chinese imports, which would be on top of 25% tariffs already in place on $250 billion in imports.

On Tuesday, responding to pressure from businesses and growing fears that a trade war is threatening the U.S. economy, the Trump administration is delaying most of the import taxes it planned to impose on Chinese goods and is dropping others altogether.

Investors are still worried that the trade war between the world’s two largest economies may drag on through the 2020 U.S. election and cause more economic damage.

For all its whipsawing up and down, the S&P 500 remains within 5% of its record, which was set in late July.

A five-day view of the Dow shows a sharp drop at the open of trading on Wednesday

A five-day view of the Dow shows a sharp drop at the open of trading on Wednesday

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7356699/Warnings-economic-crisis-Treasury-yields-invert-time-Great-Recession.html

Federal funds rate

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Federal Funds Rate compared to U.S. Treasury interest rates

2 to 10 year treasury yield spread

Inflation (blue) compared to federal funds rate (red)

Quarterly gross domestic product compared to Federal Funds Rate.

Federal Funds Rate and Treasury interest rates from 2002-2019

In the United States, the federal funds rate is the interest rate at which depository institutions (banks and credit unions) lend reserve balances to other depository institutions overnight on an uncollateralized basis. Reserve balances are amounts held at the Federal Reserve to maintain depository institutions’ reserve requirements. Institutions with surplus balances in their accounts lend those balances to institutions in need of larger balances. The federal funds rate is an important benchmark in financial markets.[1][2]

The interest rate that the borrowing bank pays to the lending bank to borrow the funds is negotiated between the two banks, and the weighted average of this rate across all such transactions is the federal funds effective rate.

The federal funds target rate is determined by a meeting of the members of the Federal Open Market Committee which normally occurs eight times a year about seven weeks apart. The committee may also hold additional meetings and implement target rate changes outside of its normal schedule.

The Federal Reserve uses open market operations to make the federal funds effective rate follow the federal funds target rate. The target rate is chosen in part to influence the money supply in the U.S. economy[3]

Mechanism

Financial institutions are obligated by law to maintain certain levels of reserves, either as reserves with the Fed or as vault cash. The level of these reserves is determined by the outstanding assets and liabilities of each depository institution, as well as by the Fed itself, but is typically 10%[4] of the total value of the bank’s demand accounts (depending on bank size). For transaction deposits of size $9.3 million to $43.9 million (checking accountsNOWs, and other deposits that can be used to make payments) the reserve requirement in 2007–2008 was 3 percent of the end-of-the-day daily average amount held over a two-week period. Transaction deposits over $43.9 million held at the same depository institution carried a 10 percent reserve requirement.

For example, assume a particular U.S. depository institution, in the normal course of business, issues a loan. This dispenses money and decreases the ratio of bank reserves to money loaned. If its reserve ratio drops below the legally required minimum, it must add to its reserves to remain compliant with Federal Reserve regulations. The bank can borrow the requisite funds from another bank that has a surplus in its account with the Fed. The interest rate that the borrowing bank pays to the lending bank to borrow the funds is negotiated between the two banks, and the weighted average of this rate across all such transactions is the federal funds effective rate.

The federal funds target rate is set by the governors of the Federal Reserve, which they enforce by open market operations and adjustments in the interest rate on reserves.[5] The target rate is almost always what is meant by the media referring to the Federal Reserve “changing interest rates.” The actual federal funds rate generally lies within a range of that target rate, as the Federal Reserve cannot set an exact value through open market operations.

Another way banks can borrow funds to keep up their required reserves is by taking a loan from the Federal Reserve itself at the discount window. These loans are subject to audit by the Fed, and the discount rate is usually higher than the federal funds rate. Confusion between these two kinds of loans often leads to confusion between the federal funds rate and the discount rate. Another difference is that while the Fed cannot set an exact federal funds rate, it does set the specific discount rate.

The federal funds rate target is decided by the governors at Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meetings. The FOMC members will either increase, decrease, or leave the rate unchanged depending on the meeting’s agenda and the economic conditions of the U.S. It is possible to infer the market expectations of the FOMC decisions at future meetings from the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) Fed Funds futures contracts, and these probabilities are widely reported in the financial media.

Applications

Interbank borrowing is essentially a way for banks to quickly raise money. For example, a bank may want to finance a major industrial effort but may not have the time to wait for deposits or interest (on loan payments) to come in. In such cases the bank will quickly raise this amount from other banks at an interest rate equal to or higher than the Federal funds rate.

Raising the federal funds rate will dissuade banks from taking out such inter-bank loans, which in turn will make cash that much harder to procure. Conversely, dropping the interest rates will encourage banks to borrow money and therefore invest more freely.[6] This interest rate is used as a regulatory tool to control how freely the U.S. economy operates.

By setting a higher discount rate the Federal Bank discourages banks from requisitioning funds from the Federal Bank, yet positions itself as a lender of last resort.

Comparison with LIBOR

Though the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR) and the federal funds rate are concerned with the same action, i.e. interbank loans, they are distinct from one another, as follows:

  • The target federal funds rate is a target interest rate that is set by the FOMC for implementing U.S. monetary policies.
  • The (effective) federal funds rate is achieved through open market operations at the Domestic Trading Desk at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York which deals primarily in domestic securities (U.S. Treasury and federal agencies’ securities).[7]
  • LIBOR is based on a questionnaire where a selection of banks guess the rates at which they could borrow money from other banks.
  • LIBOR may or may not be used to derive business terms. It is not fixed beforehand and is not meant to have macroeconomic ramifications.[8]

Predictions by the market

Considering the wide impact a change in the federal funds rate can have on the value of the dollar and the amount of lending going to new economic activity, the Federal Reserve is closely watched by the market. The prices of Option contracts on fed funds futures (traded on the Chicago Board of Trade) can be used to infer the market’s expectations of future Fed policy changes. Based on CME Group 30-Day Fed Fund futures prices, which have long been used to express the market’s views on the likelihood of changes in U.S. monetary policy, the CME Group FedWatch tool allows market participants to view the probability of an upcoming Fed Rate hike. One set of such implied probabilities is published by the Cleveland Fed.

Historical rates

As of 19 December 2018 the target range for the Federal Funds Rate is 2.25–2.50%.[9] This represents the ninth increase in the target rate since tightening began in December 2015.[10]

The last full cycle of rate increases occurred between June 2004 and June 2006 as rates steadily rose from 1.00% to 5.25%. The target rate remained at 5.25% for over a year, until the Federal Reserve began lowering rates in September 2007. The last cycle of easing monetary policy through the rate was conducted from September 2007 to December 2008 as the target rate fell from 5.25% to a range of 0.00–0.25%. Between December 2008 and December 2015 the target rate remained at 0.00–0.25%, the lowest rate in the Federal Reserve’s history, as a reaction to the Financial crisis of 2007–2008 and its aftermath. According to Jack A. Ablin, chief investment officer at Harris Private Bank, one reason for this unprecedented move of having a range, rather than a specific rate, was because a rate of 0% could have had problematic implications for money market funds, whose fees could then outpace yields.[11]

Federal funds rate history and recessions.png

Explanation of federal funds rate decisions

When the Federal Open Market Committee wishes to reduce interest rates they will increase the supply of money by buying government securities. When additional supply is added and everything else remains constant, the price of borrowed funds – the federal funds rate – falls. Conversely, when the Committee wishes to increase the federal funds rate, they will instruct the Desk Manager to sell government securities, thereby taking the money they earn on the proceeds of those sales out of circulation and reducing the money supply. When supply is taken away and everything else remains constant, the interest rate will normally rise.[12]

The Federal Reserve has responded to a potential slow-down by lowering the target federal funds rate during recessions and other periods of lower growth. In fact, the Committee’s lowering has recently predated recessions,[13] in order to stimulate the economy and cushion the fall. Reducing the federal funds rate makes money cheaper, allowing an influx of credit into the economy through all types of loans.

The charts linked below show the relation between S&P 500 and interest rates.

  • July 13, 1990 — Sept 4, 1992: 8.00%–3.00% (Includes 1990–1991 recession)[14][15]
  • Feb 1, 1995 — Nov 17, 1998: 6.00–4.75 [16][17][18]
  • May 16, 2000 — June 25, 2003: 6.50–1.00 (Includes 2001 recession)[19][20][21]
  • June 29, 2006 — (Oct. 29 2008): 5.25–1.00[22]
  • Dec 16, 2008 — 0.0–0.25[23]
  • Dec 16, 2015 — 0.25–0.50[24]
  • Dec 14, 2016 — 0.50–0.75[25]
  • Mar 15, 2017 — 0.75–1.00[26]
  • Jun 14, 2017 — 1.00–1.25[27]
  • Dec 13, 2017 — 1.25–1.50[28]
  • Mar 21, 2018 — 1.50–1.75[29]
  • Jun 13, 2018 — 1.75–2.00[30]
  • Sep 26, 2018 — 2.00–2.25[9]
  • Dec 19, 2018 — 2.25–2.50[31]

Bill Gross of PIMCO suggested that in the prior 15 years ending in 2007, in each instance where the fed funds rate was higher than the nominal GDP growth rate, assets such as stocks and housing fell.[32]

International effects

A low federal funds rate makes investments in developing countries such as China or Mexico more attractive. A high federal funds rate makes investments outside the United States less attractive. The long period of a very low federal funds rate from 2009 forward resulted in an increase in investment in developing countries. As the United States began to return to a higher rate in 2013 investments in the United States became more attractive and the rate of investment in developing countries began to fall. The rate also affects the value of currency, a higher rate increasing the value of the U.S. dollar and decreasing the value of currencies such as the Mexican peso.[33]

See also

References

  1. ^ “Fedpoints: Federal Funds”Federal Reserve Bank of New York. August 2007. Retrieved October 2, 2011.
  2. ^ “The Implementation of Monetary Policy”. The Federal Reserve System: Purposes & Functions (PDF). Washington, D.C.: Federal Reserve Board. August 24, 2011. p. 4. Retrieved October 2, 2011.
  3. ^ “Monetary Policy, Open Market Operations”. Federal Reserve Bank. January 30, 2008. Archived from the original on April 13, 2001. Retrieved January 30, 2008.
  4. ^ “Reserve Requirements”. Board of Governors of The Federal Reserve System. December 16, 2015.
  5. ^ Stefan Homburg (2017) A Study in Monetary Macroeconomics, Oxford University Press, ISBN 978-0-19-880753-7.
  6. ^ “Fed funds rate”. Bankrate, Inc. March 2016.
  7. ^ Cheryl L. Edwards (November 1997). Gerard Sinzdak. “Open Market Operations in the 1990s” (PDF)Federal Reserve Bulletin (PDF).
  8. ^ “BBA LIBOR – Frequently asked questions”. British Bankers’ Association. March 21, 2006. Archived from the original on February 16, 2007.
  9. Jump up to:a b “Federal Reserve issues FOMC statement” (Press release). Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. December 19, 2018. Retrieved June 2, 2019.
  10. ^ Tankersley, Jim (March 21, 2018). “Fed Raises Interest Rates for Sixth Time Since Financial Crisis”The New York Times. Retrieved March 22, 2018.
  11. ^ “4:56 p.m. US-Closing Stocks”. Associated Press. December 16, 2008. Archived from the original on July 18, 2012.
  12. ^ David Waring (February 19, 2008). “An Explanation of How The Fed Moves Interest Rates”. InformedTrades.com. Archived from the original on May 5, 2015. Retrieved July 20, 2009.
  13. ^ “Historical Changes of the Target Federal Funds and Discount Rates, 1971 to present”. New York Federal Reserve Branch. February 19, 2010. Archived from the original on December 21, 2008.
  14. ^ “$SPX 1990-06-12 1992-10-04 (rate drop chart)”. StockCharts.com.
  15. ^ “$SPX 1992-08-04 1995-03-01 (rate rise chart)”. StockCharts.com.
  16. ^ “$SPX 1995-01-01 1997-01-01 (rate drop chart)”. StockCharts.com.
  17. ^ “$SPX 1996-12-01 1998-10-17 (rate drop chart)”. StockCharts.com.
  18. ^ “$SPX 1998-09-17 2000-06-16 (rate rise chart)”. StockCharts.com.
  19. ^ “$SPX 2000-04-16 2002-01-01 (rate drop chart)”. StockCharts.com.
  20. ^ “$SPX 2002-01-01 2003-07-25 (rate drop chart)”. StockCharts.com.
  21. ^ “$SPX 2003-06-25 2006-06-29 (rate rise chart)”. StockCharts.com.
  22. ^ “$SPX 2006-06-29 2008-06-01 (rate drop chart)”. StockCharts.com.
  23. ^ “Press Release”. Board of Governors of The Federal Reserve System. December 16, 2008.
  24. ^ “Open Market Operations”. Board of Governors of The Federal Reserve System. December 16, 2015.
  25. ^ “Decisions Regarding Monetary Policy Implementation”. Board of Governors of The Federal Reserve System. Archived from the original on December 15, 2016.
  26. ^ Cox, Jeff (March 15, 2017). “Fed raises rates at March meeting”CNBC. Retrieved March 15, 2017.
  27. ^ “Federal Reserve issues FOMC statement”. Board of Governors of The Federal Reserve System. June 14, 2017.
  28. ^ “Federal Reserve issues FOMC statement”. Board of Governors of The Federal Reserve System. December 13, 2017.
  29. ^ “Federal Reserve issues FOMC statement”. Board of Governors of The Federal Reserve System. March 21, 2018.
  30. ^ “Federal Reserve issues FOMC statement”. Board of Governors of The Federal Reserve System. June 13, 2018.
  31. ^ “Federal Reserve issues FOMC statement”. Board of Governors of The Federal Reserve System. December 19, 2018.
  32. ^ Shaw, Richard (January 7, 2007). “The Bond Yield Curve as an Economic Crystal Ball”. Retrieved April 3, 2011.
  33. ^ Peter S. Goodman, Keith Bradsher and Neil Gough (March 16, 2017). “The Fed Acts. Workers in Mexico and Merchants in Malaysia Suffer”The New York Times. Retrieved March 18,2017Rising interest rates in the United States are driving money out of many developing countries, straining governments and pinching consumers around the globe.

External links

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Federal_funds_rate

Missy Higgins

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Missy Higgins
A woman in her twenties with short blonde hair, wearing a black jacket and grey shirt with black stripes.

Missy Higgins, ARIA No. 1 Chart Awards, 10 August 2012
Background information
Birth name Melissa Morrison Higgins
Born 19 August 1983 (age 36)
Origin MelbourneVictoria
Genres Pop rockindieacoustic
Occupation(s) Singer-songwritermusician
Instruments Vocalspianosynthesiserguitarmelodicaxylophonecowbellukulele
Years active 2001–present
Labels Eleven
Reprise
Warner Bros.
Associated acts
Website missyhiggins.com.au

Melissa Morrison Higgins (born 19 August 1983) is an Australian singer-songwriter, musician and actress. Her Australian number-one albums are The Sound of White (2004), On a Clear Night (2007) and The Ol’ Razzle Dazzle (2012), and her singles include “Scar“, “The Special Two“, “Steer” and “Where I Stood“. Higgins was nominated for five ARIA Music Awards in 2004 and won ‘Best Pop Release’ for “Scar”. In 2005, she was nominated for seven more awards and won five. Higgins won her seventh ARIA in 2007. Her third album, The Ol’ Razzle Dazzle, was released in Australia in June 2012 (July 2012 in the US). As of August 2014, Higgins’ first three studio albums had sold over one million units.[1]

Higgins’ fourth studio album, OZ, was released in September 2014 and consists of cover versions of Australian composers, as well as a book of related essays.

Alongside her music career, Higgins pursues interests in animal rights and the environment, endeavouring to make her tours carbon neutral. In 2010 she made her acting debut in the feature film Bran Nue Dae and also performed on its soundtrack.

Biography

Early life

Higgins was born in Melbourne, Victoria, to Gregory Higgins, an English-Australian Tipstave, and Margaret (née Morrison), an Australian childcare centre operator.[2][3] Her sister, Nicola, is seven years older and her brother, David, six years older.[3] Higgins learned to play classical piano from age six, following in the footsteps of Christopher and David, but realised she wanted to be a singer at about 12, when she appeared in an Armadale Primary School production of Andrew Lloyd Webber‘s musical Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.[4] Bored with practice, she gave up playing piano at that time.[5] Hoping for more freedom, she urged her parents to send her to Geelong Grammar School, an independent boarding school that her siblings attended. At Geelong, Higgins took up the piano again, this time playing jazz and performing with her brother David’s group on weekends.[6]Introverted by nature, Higgins found that piano practice helped her cope with living at boarding school.[5]

At 15, while attending Geelong Grammar’s Timbertop, she wrote “All for Believing” for a school music assignment, completing it just hours before the deadline.[7] The assignment earned an A and she performed her song in front of classmates. She approached a Melbourne record company and was told that they wanted more than one song.[5] She wrote more songs and worked with the Kool Skools project, which enables students to record music.[8] In 2001, Missy’s sister Nicola entered “All for Believing” on her behalf in Unearthed, radio station Triple J‘s competition for unsigned artists. The song won the competition and was added to the station’s play list.[9]

Two record companies showed an interest in Higgins—Sony and Eleven.[5] She signed with Eleven, partly because they agreed that she would not be “made into a pop star”[10] and partly because they were happy for her to take time off for a backpacking holiday.[5]Higgins’ manager is Eleven’s John Watson, who also manages rock band Silverchair.[2] Watson later disclosed that “Missy’s the only time in my career I knew after 90 seconds I really wanted to sign her.”[11] The backpacking trip had been planned with a friend for years and the pair spent most of 2002 in Europe; while Higgins was travelling, “All for Believing” started to receive airplay on Los Angeles radio station KCRW.[12] Such radio exposure attracted the attention of American record labels and, by year’s end, an international recording deal with Warner Bros. had been negotiated.[13]

2003–2005: The Sound of White

Higgins is seated. She sings into a microphone and plays a keyboard instrument. The lettering RD-300SX and Roland are visible across its front.

Higgins, San Francisco, 11 August 2005
Courtesy Nabeel Hyatt

Higgins was the support act on a 2003 Australian tour by folk rock band The Waifs and rock band george.[13] She travelled to the US to work with John Porter, who produced her first EPThe Missy Higgins EP,[14] which was released in November and entered the Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) Singles Chart Top 50 in August 2004.[15]

She toured Australia, supporting Pete Murray and John Butler Trio.[16] Her four-track single “Scar'” was released in July 2004 and debuted at No. 1 on the ARIA Charts.[15][17] Her first album, The Sound of White, was released in September, and debuted at No. 1 on the ARIA Albums Chart.[15] Also produced by Porter, it sold over 500,000 copies.[18] She was nominated in five categories at the ARIA Music Awards of 2004 for “Scar”: Best Female Artist’, ‘Single of the Year’, ‘Best Pop Release’, ‘Breakthrough Artist – Single’ and ‘Best Video’ (directed by Squareyed Films).[19] At the awards ceremony on 17 October she received the award for Best Pop Release, beating Delta GoodremThe DissociativesKylie Minogue and Pete Murray.[19] This was followed by her first national headline tour.[20] Her second single “Ten Days” was co-written with Jay Clifford (guitarist in US band Jump, Little Children) and was inspired by Higgins’ 2002 break-up with her boyfriend before she travelled to Europe.[21] Released in November, it peaked at No. 12.[15]

On 29 January 2005 Higgins performed with other local musicians including Nick Cave and Powderfinger at the WaveAid fundraising concert in the Sydney Cricket Ground.[22] The concert raised A$2.3 million for four charities supporting the victims of the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake.[23] In March Higgins performed at the MTV Australia Awards and won the prize for ‘Breakthrough Artist of the Year’.[24] The following month she released her third single, “The Special Two”, which was a radio hit and reached No. 2.[15] “The Special Two” was released on an EP which included her cover of the Skyhooks song, “You Just Like Me Cos I’m Good In Bed”, recorded for Triple J‘s 30th anniversary. The song had been the first track played on Triple J when it launched (as Double J) in 1975.[25] In May, Higgins won the ‘Song of the Year’ and ‘Breakthrough’ awards for “Scar” from the Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA).[26] She continued touring in mid-2005 and released her fourth single, “The Sound of White”, in August.[15] In September she played a sold out performance at the Vanguard in Sydney with the proceeds going to charity.[27] She was nominated for seven more ARIAs and in October won ‘Album of the Year’, ‘Best Pop Release’, ‘Breakthrough Artist – Album’ and ‘Highest Selling Album’ (all for The Sound of White) and ‘Best Female Artist’ (for “Scar”).[28] She teamed up with fellow ARIA award-winning singer Ben Lee in late 2005 for a national tour.[29]

2006–2009: On a Clear Night

Higgins stands and plays an acoustic guitar with her left hand high on the fret board. She sings into a microphone. Her right arm and bottom of guitar are not in view. Background has large stage lights.

Higgins, Live Earth concert, Sydney, 7 July 2007
Courtesy Itapp

During 2006, Higgins lived in Broome, Western Australia for six months, away from the entertainment industry. The relaxed lifestyle helped her focus on writing new material.[30] The landscape made a big impression, “It was the first place I’d ever felt honestly connected with my country, with the physical land of my country” and inspired her to write “Going North”.[31] She then toured the United States and South Africa, writing more material on the road.[32] In September she based herself in Los Angeles to record her second album, On a Clear Night, with producer Mitchell Froom.[33][34] “Steer” was released as an EP, followed a fortnight later by its album on 28 April 2007, both debuted at No. 1 on their respective charts.[15]

In February, Higgins had contributed a tribute song to the album, Cannot Buy My Soul, for noted indigenous singer, Kev Carmody, singing “Droving Woman” with musician Paul Kelly and group Augie March.[35] On 7 July, she participated in the Live Earth concert in Sydney, performing her own set before joining Carmody, Kelly and vocalist John Butler on stage for the song “From Little Things Big Things Grow“.[36] Emily Dunn in The Sydney Morning Herald wrote “[the song] could have been the event’s anthem”.[37] Rolling Stone‘s Dan Lander pointed out a highlight, when the “whole crowd sung along – all eleven verses.”[38]

Higgins returned to Los Angeles to focus on the US market—she spent September and October touring—where she was still relatively unknown.[39] On 26 October, backed by the Sydney Youth Orchestra, she headlined the annual Legs 11 concert, a breast cancer benefit held in The DomainRoyal Botanic Gardens, Sydney.[40] Two days later Higgins performed at the 2007 ARIAs where she was nominated for ‘Best Pop Release’, ‘Highest Selling Album’ and ‘Highest Selling Single’ (for “Steer”) and won ‘Best Female Artist’ (for On a Clear Night)—her seventh ARIA Music Award.[41] On 31 October, she was a guest at television music channel MAX‘s inaugural Concert for the Cure, a private concert for people affected by breast cancer. She sang headline act Powderfinger’s “Sunsets” with front man Bernard Fanning and joined in with the encore of “These Days“.[42][43] She spent November and December on her For One Night Only Tour, taking in Cairns, Sydney and Perth. You Am I lead singer, Tim Rogers, joined her on some shows.[44]

On a Clear Night, was released in the US on 26 February 2008, supported by a tour in March. Her ten-month stay in Los Angeles during 2008 promoted her songs for films and television shows.[33][45] Her first US single “Where I Stood” was featured in US series including Grey’s AnatomyOne Tree Hill and So You Think You Can Dance.[46] During 2008, Higgins supported the Indigo Girls and then Ben Folds on their respective US tours.[47] February and March 2009 saw her co-headlining a US tour with Canadian Justin Nozuka.[48] On 31 March she released an EP, More Than This in Australia that features cover versions of “More Than This” by Roxy Music, “(I’m) In Love Again” by Peggy Lee, “Breakdown” by Tom Petty and “Moses” by Patty Griffin.[49] “Moses” had been included on Triple J’s 2005 compilation album Like a Version: Volume One and “More Than This” was recorded as part of Covered, A Revolution in Sound, a Warner Bros. tribute album also released in March 2009.[50]

2010–2013: The Ol’ Razzle Dazzle

Higgins performing live in December 2012

Higgins started writing music for her third album in 2009.[51] After about seven years of touring and recording she took a break from the music industry to pursue other interests.[52] In 2010 she enrolled in a course in indigenous studies at the University of Melbourne.[53] Her acting debut was as Annie in 2010 film Bran Nue Dae directed by Rachel Perkins. The film is an adaptation of the 1990 musical, Bran Nue Dae, “Australia’s first Aboriginalmusical”.[54] Although Higgins would consider future acting projects she has no plans to actively pursue it as a career.[51][55]

In July and August 2010, Higgins played several dates of Sarah McLachlan‘s Lilith Fair tour in the US.[56][57] At Lilith Fair, she met Australian musician Butterfly Boucher and they decided to work together. In 2011, Higgins travelled to where Boucher was living in Nashville to record her third album, which is co-produced by Boucher and Brad Jones.[58] Titled The Ol’ Razzle Dazzle, the album was released on 1 June 2012.[59] Its first single, “Unashamed Desire“, co-written with Boucher, was released on 23 April.[60] In November 2011, at the ARIA Music Awards, Higgins performed a duet of “Warwu”with Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu, from his Rrakala album.[61]

“The Ol’ Razzle Dazzle” album debuted at #1 on the ARIA Albums Chart the week of 12 June 2012. It was Higgins’ 3rd straight number one album. As of January 2019, Higgins ties Olivia Newton-John for the 3rd highest tally of Australian Number One albums by an Australian female artist. Only Delta Goodrem (with four Number 1 ARIA albums) and Kylie Minogue and Kasey Chambers (with five each) have achieved more.

2014: Oz

In September 2014, Higgins released her fourth studio album, Oz, which features cover versions of Australian composers, including The Angels, Slim Dusty, Something For Kate, Warumpi Band, Paul Kelly and The Drones. The album is also accompanied by a book of related essays, in which Higgins uses each of the recordings to reflect upon subjects such as music and love.[62] Higgins collaborated with Dan Sultan for the recording of the Slim Dusty song “The Biggest Disappointment”.[63]

Higgins explained in an October 2014 interview that she experienced a significant bout of writer’s block following the completion of her second album and someone suggested an album of cover versions at the time, but she only revisited the idea during the conception of Oz. Higgins further explained:

I responded to all these songs on an emotional level, when I first heard them. I wanted songs I felt I could tell with my own voice, and interpret them authentically … But it was important to maintain the emotional integrity and the heart of the song. It was a high priority to keep true to the songs.[63]

The album was co-produced by Jherek Bischoff, who previously worked with David Byrne, formerly of Talking Heads, and Amanda Palmer.[1]

Oz debuted at number 3 on the ARIA Albums chart[64] and remained in the top five positions until 18 October 2014.[65]

The national Australian tour in support of Oz commenced on 20 September 2014 in Cairns, Queensland, and ended in Melbourne in October 2014. Higgins was accompanied by Bischoff, and Australian artist Dustin Tebbutt appeared as a special guest.[1]

2015–present: Solastalgia and The Special Ones

Higgins, performing live in Taronga Zoo, February 2016.

On 19 February 2016, Higgins released a new single titled, “Oh Canada“,[66] in her response to the Death of Alan Kurdi.

In May 2017, Higgins released “Torchlight“, for the Australian drama film, Don’t Tell.[67]

In October 2017, Higgins appeared in a revival of the 1996 musical Miracle City by Nick Enright and Max Lambert at the Sydney Opera House, playing the role of Bonnie Mae.[68]

In February 2018, Higgins released the single “Futon Couch“, the first single from her fifth studio album, called Solastalgia, released in May 2018.[69]

In February 2018, it was announced that Missy Higgins would support Ed Sheeran‘s tour around Australia.[70]

In November 2018, Higgins released her first greatest hits album titled The Special Ones.[71]

Musical influences and technique

Higgins grew up in the 1980s and 1990s listening to artists that her older siblings liked—Nicola played Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston, while David favoured Queen and Kiss.[72][73] Departing for boarding school at age 13, she was exposed to alternative artists like Nirvana and Hole and started teaching herself guitar and writing her own music.[73] She also began singing with David’s jazz group on weekends. As an adult she prefers Nina Simone and Ray Charles to “poppy dance music”.[73] She has cited Patty GriffinRon SexsmithRufus WainwrightPaul Kelly and Sarah McLachlan as influences.[5][51][74] Material from her third album is influenced by ambient music from LowJon Hopkins, Icelandic band Sigur Rós and Estonian classical composer Arvo Pärt.[51]

Higgins’ song writing grew out of a desire to express her emotions when she was at school and her lyrics describe her feelings about her own life and relationships.[75][76] The piano was the first instrument she learned to play, and she continues to use it as well as digital pianos including a Roland RD-300SX, RD-700 and KR-15.[77][78] She also uses guitars extensively in her music particularly when touring, due to their portable nature and favours the Australian brand, Maton.[78] On occasion she plays keytarxylophone and melodicaduring performances.[31][79]

On 7 September 2012, Higgins recorded a cover version of Gotye‘s “Heart’s A Mess” for the “Like a Version” segment on Australian radio station Triple J, explaining on-air that the song is her favourite Gotye composition. Higgins had travelled with Gotye previously and referred to him as “an incredible singer” in the interview prior to the rendition.[80]

Causes

As a vegetarian, Higgins promoted the health benefits of not eating meat in a 2005 advertising campaign by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA);[81] and has supported their anti-fur stance.[45] She is interested in environmental issues and is involved with the Sierra Club, a grassroots organisation based in California.[45] She has protested against the proposed industrialisation of the Kimberley region of Western Australia and donated the royalties from her 2009 EP More Than This.[49] Since early 2007, Higgins has tried to make her tours carbon neutral, she purchases green energy to power venues, uses hybrid cars where possible and purchases carbon offsets.[82]

On 5 October 2012, Higgins performed at two “Save the Kimberley” events held at Federation Square in Melbourne and The Esplanade in Fremantle, Western Australia.[83][84] A march to protest against the proposed gas refinery construction at James Price Point accompanied the free concert and campaign supporters were photographed with banners and placards.[85]

As of 2012, Higgins is one of numerous publicly known advocates for the ‘Oscar’s Law’ campaign. The campaign, launched in 2010, protests against the existence of “puppy factories” in Australia, whereby animals are factory farmed. One of the campaign’s slogans is “Break the Puppy Trade—Don’t buy puppies from pet shops” and the list of notable advocates includes Paul Dempsey (musician), Kate Ceberano (singer) and Mick Molloy (comedian).[86]

In response to the proposed dumping of around 3 million cubic metres (110 million cubic feet) of dredged seabed onto the Great Barrier Reef,[87] a legal fighting team was formed by World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF)-Australia and the Australian Marine Conservation Society (AMCS) in late 2013/early 2014.[88] The legal team received further support in April 2014, following the release of the “Sounds For The Reef” musical fundraising project. Produced by Straightup, the digital album features Higgins, in addition to artists such as The HerdSiettaJohn ButlerThe Cat EmpireFat Freddys Drop, The Bamboos (featuring Kylie Auldist) and Resin Dogs. Released on 7 April, the album’s 21 songs were sold on the Bandcamp website.[89][90]

Personal life

Higgins has been a patron of multiple mental health charities since 2003. She described her younger self as “a bit of a depressed child” and “introverted”, and that she had “experienced various degrees of depression”.[14][91] Prescribed antidepressant medication while in high school, she learned to channel low moods into songwriting, calling music her “emotional outlet”.[3][72] In a 2006 interview she said that her songs were “coming from more of a happier place”.[92] While recording her second album she discovered a passion for rock climbing, as a “meditative pursuit”[93] and that, “It’s the first and last thing I’ve had — other than music — that I’m passionate about.”[72]

From 2004 to 2007, Higgins’ sexual orientation was the subject of media speculation based partly on interpretations of her lyrics and her interviews. In an October 2007 interview with Australian lesbian magazine Cherrie, she was asked if she fell under the moniker of “not-so-straight” girls. She replied “Um, yeah, definitely. … I think sexuality is a fluid thing and it’s becoming increasingly more acceptable to admit that you’re that way.”[94] In November her Myspace page reported, “I’ve been in relationships with both men and women so I guess I fall most easily under the category ‘Bisexual'”.[95][96]

In 2013, Higgins began a relationship with Broome playwright and comedian Dan Lee.[97][98] Higgins gave birth to her son named Samuel Arrow Lee, on 5 January 2015.[99] They got married in March 2016,[100][101] and she gave birth to daughter named Luna, on 13 August 2018.

Discography

Filmography

Awards and nominations

Higgins at the ARIA Awardsceremony, December 2013, Star Event Centre, Sydney

APRA Awards

The APRA Awards are presented annually from 1982 by the Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA).[102] Higgins has won two awards from six nominations.[103][104]

 
Year Nominee / work Award Result
2005 Scar” (Missy Higgins, Kevin Griffin) – Missy Higgins Song of the Year[103] Won
Ten Days” (Missy Higgins, Jay Clifford) – Missy Higgins Song of the Year[105] Nominated
Missy Higgins Breakthrough Award[104] Won
2006 The Special Two” (Missy Higgins) – Missy Higgins Song of the Year[106] Nominated
Most Performed Australian Work[106] Nominated
“Ten Days” (Missy Higgins, Jay Clifford) Most Performed Australian Work[106] Nominated

ARIA Awards

The ARIA Music Awards are presented annually from 1987 by the Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA). Higgins has won nine awards from twenty-four nominations.[107][108]

 
Year Nominee / work Award Result
2004 Scar Single of the Year Nominated
Best Female Artist Nominated
Breakthrough Artist – Single Nominated
Best Pop Release Won
“Scar” – Squareyed Films Best Video Nominated
2005 The Sound of White Album of the Year Won
Best Female Artist Won
Highest Selling Album Won
Breakthrough Artist – Album Won
Best Pop Release Won
The Sound of White – Cathie Glassby Best Cover Art Nominated
The Special Two Single of the Year Nominated
Highest Selling Single Nominated
2006 If You Tell Me Yours, I’ll Tell You Mine Best Music DVD Nominated
2007 On a Clear Night Best Female Artist Won
Best Pop Release Nominated
Highest Selling Album Nominated
Steer Highest Selling Single Nominated
2008 Peachy Best Female Artist Nominated
2012 The Ol’ Razzle Dazzle Best Female Artist Nominated
Album of the Year Nominated
Best Adult Contemporary Artist Won
Everyone’s Waiting” – Natasha Pincus Best Video Won
2013 “Set Me on Fire” Best Female Artist Nominated
2018 Solastalgia Best Adult Contemporary Album Nominated

Other awards

She has won an MTV Australia Video Music Award.[24]

References …

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Missy_Higgins

 

 

Story 4: President Trump Energy Speech at Shell Pennsylvania Petrochemicals Complex in Monaca, Pennsylvania 

FULL SPEECH: President Trump speech on energy in Pennsylvania

Trump was supposed to give a speech on energy. He went way off script.

Updated 

President Donald Trump on Tuesday headed to a Shell petrochemicals plant being built outside Pittsburgh to give what was billed by the White House as a speech on “America’s Energy Dominance and Manufacturing Revival.”

But the hourlong address was light on energy policy and heavy on stump speech material and off-script riffs, as Trump touched on everything from his love of trucks to his assessment of his potential 2020 rivals. The meandering speech came on a day when the president had already attacked a CNN anchor, endorsed a controversial World Series hero’s potential congressional bid and defended his parroting of a conspiracy theory concerning the apparent suicide of his onetime friend Jeffrey Epstein.

Here are some of Trump’s most off-key comments:

On the supposed benefits of natural gas over renewable energy: “When the wind stops blowing, it doesn’t make any difference does it? Unlike those big windmills that destroy everybody’s property values, kill all the birds. One day the environmentalists are going to tell us what’s going on with that. And then all of a sudden it stops. The wind and the televisions go off. And your wives and husbands say: ‘Darling, I want to watch Donald Trump on television tonight. But the wind stopped blowing and I can’t watch. There’s no electricity in the house, darling.’”

On his construction chops: “I was a good builder. I built good. I love building; in fact, I’m going to take a tour of the site.”

On doing some campaigning: “I’m going to speak to some of your union leaders to say, ‘I hope you’re going to support Trump, OK?’ And if they don’t, vote ‘em the hell out of office because they’re not doing their job — it’s true.”

On his love of trucks: “I love cranes, I love trucks of all types. Even when I was a little boy at 4 years old, my mother would say, ‘You love trucks.’ I do, I always loved trucks, I still do. Nothing changes — sometimes you know you might become president, but nothing changes — I still love trucks. Especially when I look at the largest crane in the world, that’s very cool. You think I’ll get to operate it? We’ll put the media on it and I’ll give them a little ride, right?”

On pundits suggesting he might not leave office willingly: “Can you imagine if I got a fair press? I mean, we’re leading without it; can you imagine if these people treated me fairly? The election would be over. Have they ever called off an election before? Just said, ‘Look just let’s go, go on four more years.’ You want to really drive them crazy? Go to #ThirdTerm, #FourthTerm — you’ll drive them totally crazy.”

On what Trump perceives as a trade imbalance with Japan: “They send us thousands and thousands — millions of cars, we send them wheat. Wheat. That’s not a good deal. And they don’t even want our wheat. They do it because they want us to at least feel that we’re OK, you know, they do it to make us feel good.” This assertion is false.

On the price tag of the presidency: “This thing is costing me a fortune, being president. Somebody said, ‘Oh, he might have rented a room to a man from Saudi Arabia for $500.’ What about the $5 billion that I’ll lose — you know, it’s probably going to cost me, including, upside, downside, lawyers, because every day they sue me for something. These are the most litigious people. It’s probably costing me from $3 to $5 billion for the pleasure of being — and I couldn’t care less, I don’t care. You know if you’re wealthy, it doesn’t matter. I just want to do a great job.”

On his pledge to salvage manufacturing jobs: “You guys, I don’t know what the hell you’re going to do. You don’t want to make widgets, right? You don’t want to make — do you want to learn how to make a computer? A little tiny piece of stuff. … You put it with those big, beautiful hands of yours like … you’re going to take these big hands, going to take this little tiny part. You’re going to go home, ‘Alice this is a tough job.’ Nah, you want to make steel, and you want to dig coal — that’s what you want to do!”

On the number of members of the media at the event, at about 2:45 p.m.: “That’s a lot people back there for, like, an 11 o’clock speech. That’s a lot of people.”

On the Oscars: “Like the Academy Awards during the day, it used to be — you know the Academy Awards is on hard times now, you know that right? Nobody wants to watch it. You know why? Because they started taking us on, everyone got tired of it. It’s amazing. That used to be second after the Super Bowl, and then all of a sudden now it’s just another show because people got tired of people getting up and making fools of themselves and disrespecting the people in this room and the people that won the election in 2016.”

On attacking Sen. Elizabeth Warren and former Vice President Joe Biden, potential 2020 rivals: “I did it very early with Pocahontas, I should have probably waited. She’s staging a comeback on Sleepy Joe. I don’t know who’s going to win, but we’ll have to hit Pocahontas very hard again if she does win. But she’s staging a little bit of a comeback. What a group — Pocahontas and Sleepy Joe.”

On Mexico deploying soldiers to stem the flow of Central American migrants: “I want to thank Mexico, it’s incredible. We have close to 27,000, you think of that. We never had three — I think we had about 2½ soldiers, one was sitting down all the time. We had nobody.”

https://www.politico.com/story/2019/08/13/donald-trump-energy-speech-pittsburgh-1461337

 

Shell Pennsylvania Petrochemicals Complex
Monaca, Pennsylvania

2:06 P.M. EDT

AUDIENCE:  USA!  USA!  USA!

THE PRESIDENT: Well, thank you very much.  And thank you, Gretchen.  It’s great to be back in the incredible Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.  Great place.  And this is my 13th visit to Pennsylvania during my administration, which is more than any other President to this point in the term.

And I really love Pennsylvania.  I went to school in Pennsylvania — Philadelphia.  So, we love this state.  And I love the unions and I love the workers.  And, you know, when I built buildings in New York — (applause) — I built them exclusively with unions.  People don’t understand that.  I was exclusive.

And, in the last really great election, our election of 2016, you know, we did great with the union workers.  Great.  But we didn’t do good with the leadership.  The leadership said, “Well, we’ve always gone Democrat.  Let’s keep going that way.”  That didn’t work out too well for some of them, I want to tell you.  (Applause.)  I’ll tell you.  And as Gretchen said, this would have never happened without me and us.  This would have never happened.  So, I’m with you.  I’m with you.  Remember that.
And remember that Pennsylvania — you know, Pennsylvania has the best numbers they’ve ever had in the history of the state.  And that’s for a very good reason.  And you know what that reason is.

(Audience member waves.)  Hello.  Here I am.  (Applause.)

And I’m truly honored to be here with the amazing energy workers and construction workers.  These are talented people.  The craft workers who make America run and who make America proud.  We’re proud again.  We’re proud again.  (Applause.)

And no one in the world does it better than you.  Nobody.  Nobody does it better.  There’s nobody in the world that does it.  And we’re unleashing that power again like we’ve never seen before, I will say.

And we are doing well and we’re fighting against a lot of countries that have taken advantage of us for many, many years.  But they’re not doing it so much anymore.  And in a little period of time, they won’t be doing it at all anymore.  They have taken advantage of this country.  (Applause.)

Today, we celebrate the revolution in American energy that’s helping make our economy the envy of the world.  This Shell petrochemical plant in Beaver County, Pennsylvania — I did very well here.  We did very well.  How many points did we win by?  Does anybody know?  I’ll tell you.  Isn’t it, I think, 28 points?  That’s a lot.  That’s against a Democrat — (laughter) — or whatever.

It’s one of the single-biggest construction projects in the nation.  And it made it possible and was possible by clean, affordable, all-American natural gas.  Powerful, clean, natural gas.  (Applause.)

And when the wind stops blowing, it doesn’t make any difference, does it?  Unlike those big windmills that destroy everybody’s property values, kill all the birds.  Someday, the environmentalists are going to tell us what’s going on with that.  And then, all of a sudden, it stops; the wind and the televisions go off.  And your wives and husbands say, “Darling, I want to watch Donald Trump on television tonight.”  (Laughter.)  “But the wind stopped blowing and I can’t watch.  There’s no electricity in the house, darling.”  No, we love natural gas and we love a lot of other things, too.

Each of you is taking part in the largest investment in Pennsylvania history.  It’s the largest investment in the history of Pennsylvania, in the history of our country — the money that’s being invested in your state right now.

With your help, we’re not only unleashing American energy, we’re restoring the glory of American manufacturing, and we are reclaiming our noble heritage as a nation of builders again.  (Applause.)  A nation of builders.

I was a good builder.  I built good.  I love building.  In fact, I’m going to take a tour of the site.  They said, “Sir, we were going to do it before the speech, but we’re waiting for it to stop raining.”  I said, “Don’t worry about the rain.  Do we have umbrellas?  Don’t worry about the rain.  Umbrellas work very well, especially when they’re made in America.”  (Laughs.)  (Applause.)  So, I don’t care.  But we’re going to take a tour afterwards.

I’m going to speak to some of your union leaders to say, “I hope you’re going to support Trump.”  Okay?  (Applause.)  And if they don’t, vote them the hell out of office because they’re not doing their job.  It’s true.  It’s true.  (Applause.)  Vote them out of office.

When completed, this facility will transform abundant natural gas — and we have a lot of it — fracked from Pennsylvania wells, which they never would have allowed you to take if I weren’t President.  If my opponent won, this would be a lot of nice, new structures outside.  I guess you would have stopped long ago.  You would have stopped construction before it started too much.

But I was talking to Gretchen.  They would have never gotten the approvals to do what’s needed to fuel these plants.  That wouldn’t have been good.  So, probably, they wouldn’t have started.  But if they would have started, it would have stopped.

But they put it into plastic through a process known as “cracking.”  That raw material will then be shipped all over the country and all over the world to be fashioned into more products stamped with that very beautiful phrase: “Made in the USA.”  Right?  “Made in the USA.”  (Applause.)  Beautiful.

AUDIENCE:  USA!  USA!  USA!

THE PRESIDENT:  That is a beautiful phrase.

Getting this massive job done right has required more than 1,500 pieces of heavy equipment; one of the largest cranes anywhere in the world — I look forward to seeing it.  I love cranes.  I loves trucks of all types.  Even when I was a little boy at four years old, my mother would say, “You love trucks.”  I do.  I always loved trucks.  I still do.  Nothing changes.  Sometimes, you know, you might become President but nothing changes.  I still love trucks, especially when I look at the largest crane in the world.  That’s very cool.  Do you think I’ll get to operate it?  I don’t know.  (Applause.)  We’ll put the media on it, and I’ll give them a little ride, right?   (Applause.)

And you have thousands of tons of concrete, aluminum and steel, and nearly 6,000 of the strongest, toughest, and most talented workers anywhere on Earth.  (Applause.)  True.  I know.  It was the Trump administration that made it possible.  No one else.  Without us, you would never have been able to do this.

I want to thank all of our great union members: the boilermakers, carpenters — (applause) — cement finishers — (applause) — electricians — (applause) — iron workers — (applause) — laborers — (applause) — millwrights — (applause) — operators — (applause) — plumbers — (applause) — painters — (applause) — steamfitters; I know them well.

And a group that I’ve used more than anybody that’s ever run for office times 1,000, because in New York City they would drive those cement trucks up to my building and those trucks were always on time, and sometimes they were lined up for six blocks when I was doing different things.  Even when I was doing the Wollman Rink, the city couldn’t build it.  Took them nine years.  They had no idea what they were doing.

And I had that whole big — about 70,000 feet — it’s like a massive office floor — bigger than an office floor.  We did it all in one day, and the trunks were lined up from Central Park all the way back into Harlem.  And they did it all in one day — that pour.  It was called a contiguous pour.  The city used to build little pieces.  A little piece here.  A little piece there.  A little piece here.  A little there.  (Laughter.)  A few years later: a little piece here.  Then they had pipes underneath and the pipes were made out of copper.

And during the evening, things would happen, like the copper would be stolen because it was very valuable.  (Laughter.)  So they’d have a little piece with copper, and then the rest of the pipe they’d lay.  And they’d get ready to pour, and they’d leave, and everybody would steal the copper.  So they — this took place for — I guess, from seven to nine years.  Nobody actually knows.  Nobody wants to talk about it.  (Laughter.)  But those trucks were operated incredibly well, and I never missed a delivery.  And it’s called the “Teamsters.”  (Applause.)

I also want to thank I also want to thank Bechtel, a real incredible company.  We talk about the great builders of the world: President Jack Futcher.  Where is he?  Where is he?  Jack.  Where is Jack?  (Applause.)  Jack.  What a great job you’ve done, Jack.  Some big ones.  Think of it this way, Jack.  If we don’t win, you won’t be doing anything in this country.  (Laughter.)  And, you know, the world follows us.  You see that.  The world follows us.  And it won’t be so good.  But you and I are friends, and you’re going to have a lot of work to do, I think, Jack.  A lot of work.  Thank you, Jack.  Great job.  (Applause.)  Jack has done an incredible job.  That’s an incredible company.  Incredible — they’re incredible builders.

And the Secretary-Treasurer of North America’s Building Trades Unions, Brent Booker.  Where’s Brent?  Brent.  Thank you.  Great job.  (Applause.)  Young guy.  You’re so young, Brent.  How the hell did you get that job?  (Laughter.)  Man.

We’re honored to be joined by two leaders who truly have the backs of American workers.  They’ve become friends of mine.  They do such an incredible job.  They break up the roadblocks.  We have a lot of roadblocks in this country, where you have — a little clause can stop a project.  A little clause can stop it for years.  And we break up those little clauses.  We break them up fast.  Energy Secretary Rick Perry.  Where’s Rick?  Rick?  (Applause.)  Thank you, Rick.  What a great guy.

I had to compete with him.  You know, he wanted to be President.  He was tough.  He was nasty.  Man.  (Laughter.)  He was nasty.  But then he said, “I want to do something great.”  And you have been incredible.  He ran Texas for like 14 years — (applause) — and he did it well.  And now he’s running a little thing called “Energy.”  And nobody has ever done it better.  Thank you, Rick, very much.  Great job.

And a man who has been incredible in every way.  You know, EPA — Environmental Protection Agency.  You’ve heard a lot of horror stories where nothing can get done, nothing gets passed.  It takes years and years and years to get a simple permit.  It can take 20, 21 years to get a road, before they reject it.  How about this?  They go 20 years — 21 years, in certain cases — for a highway or a road.  Not even a highway.  At the end of the 21st year, they vote to reject it.  How would you like to be — you’re a young person, you’re starting out, and you’re all excited about this project.  And it starts off as being a simple, straight road, and then it ends up being a total catastrophe because of nesting and lots of other things that we can take care of.  And it’s 20 years later, and then they reject it.  You’ve devote half of your working life to a rejection.  It happened to many people.

And we have a man that knows how to break it up but he’s also a great lover of the environment: EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler.  He’s done an incredible job.  Andrew?  (Applause.)  Great job, Andrew.  Great.  Really great job.

And I also want to recognize some of my great friends that have helped me so much: Congressman John Joyce.  John?  (Applause.)  John.  Where is John?  John.  John, usually you’re in the front row.  I can’t believe this.  I guess you got shut out by the unions.  Look.  (Laughter.)  Thank you, John.  Fantastic job.  John Joyce.  Been a great friend — a great friend of all of us.

Speaker of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives Michael Turzai.  (Applause.)  Michael Turzai.  Thank you.  Michael, great job.  Thank you.  Good to see you, Michael.  Michael Turzai.  Great name in this state, I’ll tell you, for a long time.  How long has it been, Michael?  You’ve been there a long time.  How long?

SPEAKER TURZAI:  (Inaudible.)

THE PRESIDENT:  Okay.  Good luck.  (Laughter.)  It’s not that long.  Thank you, Mike.

And one of my good friends from Beaver County, David Urban.  David.  (Applause.)  David.  Where’s David?  David?  Thank you, David.  Great football player.  Great athlete.  And he was a Trump supporter.  He liked Trump.  And when he liked Trump, nobody was going to get in his way.  Right, David?

AUDIENCE MEMBER:  We love Trump!

THE PRESIDENT:  (Laughs.)  Thank you.  Thank you.
How are we doing in the state, David?  We looking good?

AUDIENCE MEMBER:  Four more years!

THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you.  I appreciate it.  (Applause.)  Thank you.

I think we’re looking very good.  I think we’re looking good all over: in Ohio, in North Carolina, in South Carolina, Florida.  We just got numbers in Florida.  We’re looking fantastically good.

Now, you know, sometimes — and they do.  They do.  They say, “Donald Trump…”  Can you imagine if I got a fair press?  I mean, we’re leading without it.  Can you imagine if these people treated me fairly?  (Applause.)  The election would be over.  Have they ever called off an election before?  Just said, “Look, just — let’s go.  Go on.  Four more years.”

Yeah.  And then, you want to really drive them crazy?  Go to “#thirdterm”; “#fourthterm.”  You’ll drive them totally crazy.  (Laughter.)  I mean, you have one guy on television: “I’m telling you, he’s not leaving.  He’s going to win and then he’s not leaving.  So, in 2024, he won’t leave.  I’m telling you…”  This is a serious person.  These people have gone stone-cold crazy.  (Laughter.)

And we’re grateful especially to the Chairman of Royal Dutch Shell.  That’s big stuff, folks.  You know, I’m a business guy.  When I hear “Royal Dutch Shell” — you know, until I became President, that was like a big deal, but now I don’t view it the same.  (Laughter.)  Once you’re President, nothing seems big.  Right?  Chad Holliday.  Where’s Chad?  (Applause.)  Chad understands it.  That’s a big deal, Chad.  But thank you for coming.  That’s a big deal.  You don’t get any bigger.  That’s an incredible company.

Shell’s U.S. President — you just met her and you know her; everybody knows her, and she’s got a lot of other things in store.  And she’s thanked me for what we’ve done here.  But I said, “Forget this.  We got a lot of jobs.  Let’s do a couple of more fast.  Do them fast.  We’ll get you fast approvals.”  And you may get rejected, you know, if it’s not going to be environmentally good, environmentally sound; if something is going to be wrong.  But we’re not going to take 20 years to reject you, like they did with the pipelines.  It didn’t matter; I approved them.  But that’s okay.

So we have pipelines — (applause) — oh — (applause) — we got plenty of pipeline folks here, don’t we?  Huh?  (Applause.)  I’ll tell you.  Hey, you know, that’s a bigger hand than we got from the Teamsters.  Do you believe that?  No, but, you know, they did that with the pipelines, right?  Keystone XL.  They did it with the pipelines.  Dakota Access Pipeline.  We’re building pipelines.  And if we get the pipelines approved, then you better work.  The EPA is working right now to get them approved in Texas.  And if we can do — we can increase our — we can increase.  We’re now the largest in the world in energy, by far.  But if we get those approved, Andrew — I hope Andrew is listening — EPA.  Andrew, you know what I’m saying, right?  If we get them approved in Texas fast — they said it will take 18 years.  I said, “Could you do it in about a month?”  (Applause.)  Right?

If we get, though — oh, look at those pipeline guys.  They’re so happy.  That’s a lot of jobs.  But, Andrew, if we get them approved fast, we can increase our entire output.  Texas is so big.  And it’s bigger — it turned out to be much bigger.

I also got you ANWR, in Alaska, which may be bigger than everything.  And they couldn’t get it.  Ronald Reagan couldn’t get it.  No President could get it.  And I got it approved, and we’re all set.  And so — (applause) — so we’re all set.

So, Andrew, in Texas, if you can get those pipelines going, you will be so happy.  We’ll have dinner with your family.  I’ll tell them how great you were.  (Laughter.)  Okay?  EPA.  Thank you, Andrew.

So I want to thank, though, Gretchen.  She’s been fantastic.  I also want to thank Vice President of Pennsylvania Chemicals Hilary Mercer.  I want to thank you very much for investing in the people of Pennsylvania.  (Applause.)  Hilary?  Where’s Hilary?  Thank you, Hilary.  (Applause.)  You’re investing in the people of Pennsylvania, so that’s a guarantee, as far as I’m concerned.

For generations, American greatness was forged, and fueled, and won by the extraordinary workers of this region.  This region is an incredible region.

Pennsylvania Steel raised the skyscrapers that built our cities.  And, by the way, steel — steel was dead.  Your business was dead.  Okay?  I don’t want to be overly crude.  Your business was dead.  And I put a little thing called “a 25 percent tariff” on all of the dumped steel all over the country.  And now your business is thriving.  Probably there’s few businesses that have gone proportionately up like steel and aluminum.
We did it with aluminum, too.  But they are doing well — 25 percent and 10 percent on aluminum.

And they still dump, but now the United States takes in billions of dollars and the dumping is much less, and the steel companies are thriving again.

We have to have a steel industry.  We can’t — (applause) — I mean, we need steel for defense.  We need steel — what are we going to do?  We have a little bit of a problem.  We have a little bit of a conflict.  We’ll say, “Listen, China, could you do us a favor?  We need help.  All our steel mills are closed.  Oh, damn it.  Could you send us some steel, please?  We don’t make steel anymore.”

Well, we make it now.  And I’ll tell you what: Those steel mills — U.S. Steel and all of them, all of them — they’re expanding all over the place.  New mills.  New expansions.  We hadn’t have — we didn’t have a new mill built in 30 years, and now we have many of them going up.

Many car plants — they’re coming in from Japan.  I told Prime Minister Abe — great guy.  I said, “Listen, we have a massive deficit with Japan.”  They send thousands and thousands — millions — of cars.  We send them wheat.  Wheat.  (Laughter.)  That’s not a good deal.  And they don’t even want our wheat.  They do it because they want us to at least feel that we’re okay.  You know, they do it to make us feel good.

But the deficit is massive, which — changing rapidly.  But what they’re doing is they’re buying a lot of our stuff, including our military equipment.  They’re building car plants now in the United States — in Michigan, in Pennsylvania.  Many, many of the Japanese car companies are coming over and building car plants in the United States.  It doesn’t fully do the trick, but it helps.  And those deficits will start coming down very substantially.

But we’re losing $78 billion.  For many years, we’re losing billions and billions with these countries.  And, frankly, the countries that we do the worst with are the allies — our allies.  Does that make sense to you?  Our allies take advantage of us far greater than our enemies.  And someday, I’m going to explain that to a lot of people.

Pennsylvania miners.  Do we love our miners?  (Applause.)  They lit up our towns and powered our industries.  And Pennsylvania factory workers made the American brand into the universal symbol of excellence all around the world — all over.

But, in recent decades, the loyalty of Pennsylvania workers was repaid only with betrayal.  They betrayed you.  They let your companies move to Mexico, to Canada, to China, to many other places.  We ended up with no income and massive unemployment.  Well, right now, our employment has reached the lowest level that it’s seen since the 1960s, and we’ll soon be breaking that record, I predict.  (Applause.)

And you’ve heard me say it, but now it’s even better.  Numbers just came out.  African American unemployment — lowest in history.  (Applause.)  Asian American, Hispanic American — lowest in the history of our country.  Women — lowest in 70 years.  (Applause.)  Sorry, women.  I let you down again.  Think of it: Lowest in 70 years, and I have to apologize to women.  But soon we’re going to have that — that will be a record very soon.  We’re very close to saying “lowest in history” for women — unemployment.

Today, we have more workers working in the United States than — almost 160 million — than at any time in the history of our country.  Think of that.  That’s a hell of a stat.  (Applause.)

The political class in Washington gutted your factories with horrendous trade deals — horrible.  NAFTA — one of the worst trade deals ever.  By the way, World Trade Organization, it made China.  China made themselves.  They did a good job.  But they ripped off our country for years, and with our money and World Trade Organization backing.  And then they took advantage of the rules of the World Trade Organization.  And I’m being nice when I say “took advantage.”  Much more than “took advantage.”  They went up like a rocket ship.  They were flat-lined for 100 years.  And then, one day, World Trade Organization — a terrible move.

And, you know, we were losing all our cases until I came along.  We were losing all our cases in the World Trade Organization.  Almost every case, we were — lost, lost, lost.  They thought we were stupid.  They were the ones ruling.

And then I came along.  Now we’re winning a lot of cases because they know that they’re not on very solid ground.  We will leave, if we have to.  And all of the sudden, we’re winning a lot of cases.  We’re winning most of our cases.  And it’s only because of attitude, because we know that they have been screwing us for years.  And it’s not going to happen any longer.  They get it.  They get it.  So they’re giving us victories.  They’re giving us victories.  (Applause.)

And I’d like to use a different word, but there’s no word that’s quite as —

AUDIENCE MEMBER:  (Inaudible.)

THE PRESIDENT:  Right?  There’s no word that’s quite as descriptive.  I’d like to.  But that’s exactly what they were doing.  They were taking advantage of us for years and years.  And now they understand that if it’s not going to be fair, it’s not going to be at all.  We don’t need it.  We don’t need it.

So, a lot of good things.  And I think we will — I think they will treat us fairly.  I mean, the concept should work.  But people have taken advantage.

Like, for instance, they view certain countries — like China, India, many countries — for a long time, they viewed them as “they’re growing.”  Right?  They’re “growing nations.”  We’re a “mature nation.”  They’re growing.  These are “growing nations.”

Well, they’ve grown.  And they had tremendous advantages.  But we’re not letting that happen anymore, okay?  We’re not letting that happen anymore.  Everybody is growing but us.  You know, they’re all “growing nations.”  We have to work with them, but nobody ever wants to work with the United States.  It’s a disgrace.  But it’s changing, and it’s changing fast.

And I think it’s the primary reason, probably, that I ran for President.  (Applause.)  I’d see these factories all over the country, and I’d see them empty, and I’d see the jobs going to other countries.  And I just never understood why the politicians didn’t do anything about it.  But now we’re doing it.

And, by the way, the USMCA — that’s Mexico and Canada — that deal is a fantastic deal.  And it’s a great deal for your unions, too.  We have the farmers, the unions, the manufacturers.  It’s good for everybody.  We have to get the Democrats to put it up for a vote.  And most Democrats are going to vote for it, too.  They’re under a lot of pressure to vote for it.

But that replaces one of the worst trade deals ever made, which is NAFTA.

But I watched them crush your industries with taxes and regulations, and they targeted American energy for total destruction.  You weren’t going to be able to take anything out.  That’s our gold.  That’s gold underneath our feet.  And they weren’t going to allow it to happen.

The Paris Accord: The Paris Accord was good for other countries.  It wasn’t good for us.

All the while, they expected you to stay on the sidelines, silence your voices, and surrender the future of our nation.  And you didn’t do it, but you didn’t have the right people representing you, so it didn’t matter.  But when you finally had the right person — the person that really cared — because let me tell — this thing is costing me a fortune, being President.  Somebody said, “Oh, he might have rented a room for — to a man from Saudi Arabia for $500.”  What about the $5 billion that I’ll lose?  You know, it’s probably going to cost me — including upside, downside, lawyers — because every day, they sue me for something.  (Laughter.)  These are the most litigious people.  It’s probably costing me from 3 to 5 billion for the privilege of being — and I couldn’t care less.  I don’t care.  You know, if you’re wealthy, it doesn’t matter.  I just want to do a great job.  That’s why — I don’t care.  I want to do the right job.

When this great building company comes here and wants to build a plant, I want to make it easy for them, not hard for them.  I’m not jealous of them.  I couldn’t care less.  Bechtel.  (Applause.)  I’m not jealous of them.

I got sued on a thing called “emoluments.”  Emoluments.  You ever hear the word?  Nobody ever heard of it before.  They went back.  Now, nobody looks at Obama getting $60 million for a book.  That’s okay.  Even though nobody in history ever got that money for a book.  Obama got $60 million.  Think of it: $60 million for a book.  Nobody looks — nobody looks at any —

But with me, it’s everything.  Emoluments.  Nobody knows what it is.  Here’s the good news: Last month, I just won two cases on emoluments.  And the judge was scolding of the other side.  And what it is, is presidential harassment because this thing is costing me a fortune, and I love it, okay?  I love it because I’m making the lives of other people much, much better.  (Applause.)
And each of you here today is living proof that America never surrenders.  We don’t surrender.  And we were in bad shape.  This area was in really bad shape.  And now you look outside, and you say, “That’s like the eighth wonder of the world.”

Under my administration, we’re fighting back and we’re winning because we are truly and finally putting America first.  (Applause.)  After years of building up foreign countries, we are finally building up our country.  Think of it, we protect the border of South Korea, but we don’t protect our own border.  But now we are.

And the wall is being built.  We won that case two weeks ago.  (Applause.)  We won that case.  The wall is being — and we’re going to have a lot of it.  We’re going to have anywhere from 400 to 500 miles built by the end of next year.  We’re building a lot of wall and we need it.  We need it.  We want people to come into our country.  They have to come in legally and we want them to come in through merit.  (Applause.)

The last administration tried to shut down Pennsylvania coal and Pennsylvania fracking.  If they got in, your fracking is gone, your coal is gone, you guys — I don’t know what the hell you’re going to do.  You don’t want to make widgets, right?  (Laughter.)  You don’t want to make — do you want to learn how to make a computer?  A little tiny piece of stuff you put in with those big, beautiful hands of yours.  (Laughter.)  They’re going to take these big hands — he’s going to take this little tiny part.  (Laughter.)  He’s going to go home, “Alice, this is a tough job.”  (Laughter.)  No, you want to make steel and you want to dig coal, and that’s what you want to do.

I was in West Virginia when Hillary made that terrible statement that she wants to close up all of the coal.

AUDIENCE:  Booo —

THE PRESIDENT:  She forgot: In three weeks, she was going to West Virginia.  Remember, she wanted to close up all coal.  She was in an area where they didn’t do the coal.  And she said, “Well, I look forward to closing up all coal.  It’s going to be closed.  Steel — going to be in big trouble.”  She forgot: In three weeks, she was going to West Virginia.  That didn’t work out too well.  (Laughter.)  I won that one by 42 points.  Forty-two points.  West Virginia.  (Applause.)

And I actually think, this time, we have a good chance of winning Virginia, which is a tough one to win because, you know, you have some people there that maybe don’t agree with us.  But I think we have a really good chance of Virginia, too, which is something that hasn’t been won by a Republican in a long time.  But it’s common sense.  Some — a lot of this is — you know, they say, politics — politics — great politics is common sense.

But on my first day in office, I ended the war on American energy.  And that’s common sense, I think.  You know, that’s common sense.  (Applause.)

We’re lucky.  You go to places like China, they don’t have oil and gas.  They don’t have it under their — they have to go buy it and then they devalue their currency and manipulate their currency.  And that costs them a fortune to go out and buy it.  They hurt themselves in the long run.  But they’re devaluing all over the place, as others are.

But we have this unbelievable — the greatest in the world.  We have the greatest resources, which really came about over the last few years.  Nobody knew this.  Fracking made it possible.  Other new technologies made it possible.  And now we’re the number-one — think of it, as I said — the number-one energy producer in the world.

I’m so proud of that because we wouldn’t have been number five.  They were going to close it up.  They were going to close it up.  And it’s common sense.  They wanted to take away our wealth.

That’s what the Paris Accord would have done.  It would have taken away our wealth.  It wasn’t for us; it was good for others.  It wasn’t for us.  We had to pay money to other countries that are very substantial countries.  They wanted to take away your wealth.  They didn’t want you to drill.  They didn’t want you to frack.  They didn’t want you to do steel.  They wanted to take away your wealth.

Now, the press will try and spin that differently, but I’m right, okay?  The fake news.  (Applause.)  That’s a lot of people back there for a — like an 11 o’clock speech.  That’s a lot of people.  (Laughter.)  That’s a lot.  That’s like the Academy Awards during the day.  (Laughter.)

It used to be.  You know, the Academy Awards is on hard times now.  You know that.  Nobody wants to watch it.  You know, why?  Because they started taking us on.  Everyone got tired of it.  It’s amazing.  That used to be second after the Super Bowl, and then, all of a sudden, now it’s just another show because people got tired of people getting up and making fools of themselves and disrespecting the people in this room and the people that won the election in 2016 — (applause) — and the people that won the Senate, without me on the ticket, in 2018.

You know, they never say that.  We won the Senate.  That’s why we’ll have appointed, within two months, 179 federal judges and two Supreme Court judges.  Think of that: 179.  (Applause.)  But they don’t say we won the Senate; they say we lost the House.  And, you know, there were a lot of people running for the House; it’s hard for me to campaign.  But almost everybody I campaigned for won.  We had tremendous records in ’18 and I wasn’t running.  There’s a big difference.  In 2020, we’re running, so you better get out there and make sure we win.  (Applause.)

And we have a record that nobody’s ever had.  Remember, when I was running, I was saying, “We’re going to do this.  We’re going to create jobs.”  Everyone — you know, big yawn.  And, you know, we like — “Let’s give him a shot.  What do we have to lose, right?”

I said that with African Americans.  They had the worst crime rates, the worst education, the worst everything.  They had like 10 things — I’m reading it off a list.  I looked — I said, “What the hell do you have to lose?”

But I really sort of said the same thing to everybody because our country wasn’t doing well with Biden and Obama.  It wasn’t doing well.  And they were pouring money in — pouring, pouring money in.  And it wasn’t doing well.

Even now, you know, you see the interest rates.  I’m paying a normalized interest rate.  We should be paying less, frankly.  This guy has made a big mistake.  He’s made a big mistake — the head of the Fed.  That was another beauty that I chose.  But even with that, we’re paying a normalized interest rate.

The nice thing is you get some interest from the bank.  With President Obama, he was paying nothing.  It’s easy to make money when you you’re paying nothing; you’re paying zero.  Easy.  But even with that, our economy is roaring and his wasn’t.  It was the weakest economy since the Great Depression.  The weakest up.

So we have it going.  Our country now has the hottest economy anywhere in the world.  Every time a prime minister, president, king, queen, dictator, whatever they may be — some are sort of mutual.  Some you have presidents and prime ministers who are actually dictators.  But they come in and they see me at the Oval Office, they always say — almost everybody — “Congratulations on your incredible economy.  What you’ve done is incredible: the tax cuts, the regulation cuts, all of the things we’ve done.”

And they were all saying — and they want to try and copy us.  It’s not easy to copy us. And part of the reason it’s not easy is because of the people like this, all over the country — the people in this room.  You are incredible people.  That was an incredible win.  Thank you.  (Applause.)  Incredible.  Incredible people.  Incredible people.

And here in the Appalachian region, where the Marcellus and Utica shale formations generate one-third of American natural gas — think of that.  You’ve been sitting on this for a long time, and yet, look at the numbers.  Look at the way you lived.  Because you never had anybody that wanted to take advantage of it, but now we’re taking advantage of it.  You’re sitting on gold, and we’re taking advantage of it.  And your future has never looked brighter or better.  It’s so great that you stayed, because you suffered.  This whole region — Appalachia.  The whole re- — it just suffered, this whole region, with great people — the greatest people.  And you suffered.

When this plant opens, 600 American workers will get the fulltime jobs, with quality healthcare, pensions, and great pay to support a family.  And you have — I said before — almost 2,000 construction workers.  And you’re going to another plant because we’re going to talk to Bechtel after this, and we’re talking to Shell.  I mean, you got the boss from Shell.  You people don’t realize, that’s a big deal.  I don’t know where the hell he comes from.  Where are you based?  It’s not in this country.  Hey, how about moving Shell to the United States?  (Applause.)  Well, we’re ready if you are.  Just let me know.  But they have their big USA division.  But that’s a great company.  It’s a big deal.  And that you’re here is a big deal.  That’s a big deal to me, and it’s a big deal to everybody in this room.  (Applause.)  You have the top man — top man at Shell.

But this is just the beginning.  My administration is clearing the way for other massive, multi-billion-dollar investments.  We just did one in Louisiana.  It’s a 10-billion-dollar plant.  There’s more pipes in that plant that I’ve ever seen in my life.  There’s more plant — you know that.  LNG.  It’s an LNG plant.  Ten billion dollars.  And we’re now — it’s totally sold out.  They sell it like you rent office space.  Can you believe it?  It’s all sold out.

All over the world, people have used it.  And you haven’t had a plant like that built in this country, really, ever, because there’s never been anything that big.  But you didn’t build plants like that because, environmentally, they weren’t letting you.  And yet, environmentally, it’s so good what they’ve done and what they can build today.

Investments that could bring more than 100,000 new jobs to this region are now being looked at very seriously.  And I think the hundred-thousand-doll- — I really do.  I feel the hundred thousand jobs, Andrew, is going to be a very low number.  I think you’re going to have many more.  This is an incredible region.  You’re sitting on top of something special.  It’s all fueled by the greatest treasure on the planet: American energy.  And we don’t want people taking that away from us.

Two more companies have recently proposed a 10-billion-dollar investment in the great state of Ohio.  Incredible state.  (Applause.)  We have tens of billions of dollars’ worth of investments, and this is really good stuff that we’re now negotiating.  But these two are in Ohio.  The energy revolution is also creating new jobs in West Virginia, [New] Mexico, Colorado, Texas, Kansas, Louisiana, Indiana, Michigan, Illinois, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, all across our beautiful land.  You have no idea what’s going on, including, as I said before, car companies.  We didn’t make cars.  Look, we lost 32 percent of our car companies to Mexico — before I got there, by the way.  Now it’s very, very hard to do that anymore.  Nobody is going to be looking that way, I don’t think.

And I want to thank Mexico because the President now has been great, and he’s got 27,000 soldiers on our southern border and on his border with Guatemala, keeping our borders safe.  (Applause.)  Our numbers are plummeting — the people coming in — (applause) — all because the Democrats won’t approve fixing the loopholes and asylum.  So, I want to thank Mexico.  It’s incredible.  We have close to 27,000 — so, you think of that.  We never had three.  I think we had about two and a half soldiers.  One was sitting down all the time.  We had nobody.

And don’t forget, the southern border is 2,000 miles, from the Gulf to the Pacific.  We have 27,000, and they’re doing a great job.  And they’re helping themselves too because they’re disrupting and really hurting the cartels.  So much of that stuff is run illegally by the cartels: human trafficking, drugs, people.  It’s terrible.  And Mexico, I’ll tell you, they’re — so far.  I hope they’re going to keep it up.  I hope they’re going to keep it up.  But they’ve been great.  And 27,000 people.  They wouldn’t have done that for any other President, that I can tell you.  That I can tell you.

With us today are a few of the hardworking Pennsylvania patriots who are making this comeback possible.

Jason Eckhart is the third generation of his family to work on these grounds.  And he’s doing better than any of them.  His father and — by the way, three years ago, you wouldn’t have said that.  Three years ago, his father would say, “Hey, I had it made.”  His grandparents would say, “We had it made.”  Now he can look at them and say, “Dad, we have it made.”

His father and grandfather worked for the zinc smelting company previously housed at this site.  When that plant closed in 2014, 500 jobs disappeared — like magic.  Remember President Obama, “You need magic to bring back manufacturing jobs.  You need a magic wand.”  You remember?  “Not going to happen.”  Well, so far, we’ve brought back 600,000 manufacturing jobs.  (Applause.)

And Jason never imagined he would get the chance to carry on his family’s legacy. But now, he has.  He is carrying it on, and he’s carrying it on proudly.  He’s a great American.  Jason — where are you, Jason?  Jason.  Jason.  Come on up, Jason.  Come on.  Let’s get Jason up.  (Applause.)  Come on up.  Jason.  I’d like Jason to tell us what this great facility means to him and to his family.  Thank you.

Jason, come tell us what this facility means to you.

MR. ECKHART:  Thank you, Mr. President.  (Applause.)

It’s been amazing to see the transformation on this site, from a 100-year-old zinc smelter to a state-of-the-art petrochem facility.  I’m very proud to be part of Pennsylvania Chemicals, to redevelop this site, and create the jobs in Western Pennsylvania for all of you.  (Applause.)

And it’s very exciting to think about what we have to come, starting this place up and having jobs into the future for our families.

As a native from this area — I’m from right here in Center Township — I can appreciate how much this means to the area.  I’m really proud to be a part of this and be proud of all you guys.  Thanks.  (Applause.)

THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you, Jason.  Great.  Did you enjoy doing that, Jason?  Huh?  I think so.  You had a big group of people back here that likes you a lot.  They’re giving him a hard time back there, right?  His friends.  Thanks, Jason.

Heather Michaux grew up here in Beaver County, and has been working for Shell in other states for several years.  Now she can raise her family right near her parents and loved ones, and actually be home, where she wants to be and where she belongs.

Heather, please come up and tell us about your journey.  (Applause.)

MS. MICHAUX:  Thank you, Mr. President.

THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you.

MS. MICHAUX:  So, for me, when Shell announced that we were going to be building a facility in Beaver County, I was in Texas and I was so excited — but not just for me getting to further my career and move home; I was excited for all the possibilities that had opened up for my hometown.  I was excited because I recognized the potential that a place like this has, for us to be able to hone our existing skills and to gain new ones, too.

So I knew that we, the hardworking people of Western Pennsylvania — and other places in the U.S., too — would now have this fresh opportunity and would take advantage of it.  And that’s the opportunity that I see the thousands of you folks taking advantage of now — not only today, but we’re also creating something that is going to well outlive us by building this site.  And I am really proud to be a part of that legacy, sir.

THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you very much.  (Applause.)  Great job.  Thank you.  She’ll be running for office soon.  (Laughter.)  Fantastic job.

Samantha Polizotto was a single mom working full-time when she learned about process technology training programs at the local community college, funded by Shell.  She became the first woman to graduate from that program, and she made the Dean’s List.  That’s pretty good.  Now she’s leading the way as one of the very first production operators hired here at Shell.

Samantha, please come up and say a few words.  Please.  (Applause.)

MS. POLIZOTTO:  Growing up in Beaver County, I can recall people talking of the “good old days,” when steel mills were running and, often, people were born and spent their whole lives in the same town.  Local families had multiple generations working the same industry and, in many cases, the same companies.

This was a fact for our parents.  But with the fall of the steel mills in this area, it began to see a period of stagnation.  Hardworking men and women in this area, full of pride, still lace up their work boots, driving by the vacant skeletons of the old mills and refineries, holding onto the hope that, one day, this area would see its former glory.

The announcement of Shell Pennsylvania Chemicals Plant seems to have kindled that spark within the community.  It has provided an opportunity for steady employment for many different skilled tradesmen, emptying many of the local union halls.

As a young woman, this has also afforded me an incredible opportunity to come into the ground floor of an unprecedented project.  In school, I chose a field far different than many of my female colleagues.  Process technology is a focused area of studies around production and operations.

Predominantly male-dominated careers, I knew there would be challenges as I entered the workforce.  Being a mother and a wife, I must balance my responsibilities at work and at home.  The challenges I have faced have been softened by a network of support that has been given to me not only by my family, but also through the Community College of Beaver County, my coworkers, and, now, the culture of care at Shell.  I am proud to play a role in this project, as it restores this area and makes Beaver County great again.  (Applause.)

THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you, Samantha.  That was a great job.  Thank you.

To help create more opportunities for workers like Jason, Heather, and Samantha, my administration started the Pledge to America’s Workers.  Our partners are providing over 12 million training and enhanced career opportunities to American workers.  And my daughter, Ivanka, is working so hard on it.  She’s done a great job.  Twelve million people, so far, have been positively affected.

Today, I’m pleased to announce that Shell is signing the Pledge to America’s Workers to provide enhanced career opportunities.  By the way, Shell, thank you.  (Applause.)  They’re providing career opportunities to 3,300 workers over five years, right here in Western Pennsylvania.  That’s great.  Thank you, fellas.  Thank you very much.  And thank you, Hilary, for that tremendous commitment that you’ve made.  We really appreciate it.  Fantastic job.

Under this administration, we live by two very simple words: Buy American.  That’s what we want.  I’m going to add something: “Hire American.”  It’s about hiring American, buying American.  It’s about “America First.”  It’s about “Make America Great Again.”  It’s about “Keep America Great.”  (Applause.)

Despite all of this exceptional progress, however, some politicians in this country still want to keep America’s vast energy treasures buried deep underground and let other nations take advantage of our country.  Not happening anymore.

They see factories like this one not as a cause for celebration, but for condemnation.  Democrats in Congress are pushing hard for the Green New Deal.  How about that one?  Green New Deal.

AUDIENCE:  Booo —

THE PRESIDENT:  Where it puts everybody in this room out of work — hate to tell you — and a lot more people.  Everybody out of work.  And other — but I don’t want to speak badly about it.  You know, you’ve heard me say this: I want to encourage them.  That should be their platform.  (Laughter.)  I don’t want to do it too early.  I did it very early, with Pocahontas; I should have probably waited.  She’s staging a comeback on Sleepy Joe.  (Laughter.)  I don’t know who’s going to win, but we’ll have to hit Pocahontas very hard again if she does win.  But she’s staging a little bit of a comeback.

What a group: Pocahontas and Sleepy Joe.  (Laughter.)  I don’t think they give a damn about Western Pennsylvania, do you?

AUDIENCE:  No!

THE PRESIDENT:  I don’t think so.  And other radical plans to wipe out our coal.  That’s what they want.  They want to wipe out our oil.  They want to wipe out our natural gas industries, while allowing other countries to steal our jobs.

Virtually every leading Democrat has vowed to eliminate fossil fuels, obliterating millions of American jobs, devastating communities, and bankrupting factories, families, and senior citizens all across this region.

And, by the way, this is only fuel that has the power for plants.  When you have to steam up and you have to fuel up on these giant plants, these giant generators, these giant electrical factories, you need what you’re doing.  You need this.  It’s got the power.  The other doesn’t have the power; certainly not yet.  Probably never will.

And we’re not taking chances.  And we have the cleanest air and water we’ve ever had in our country right now.  The cleanest we’ve ever had.  And we’re going to keep it that way.  (Applause.)

But we’re never going to allow other countries and outside sources to take away our great wealth, because that’s what they want to do.  They want to take away our wealth, take away our jobs.  We’re not going to let it happen.

To see the destructive results of the far-left’s energy nightmare, just compare the enormous success here in Pennsylvania with the tremendous folly happening right across a line — a little line — ina New York.  Both states have vast energy reserves, but New York prohibits development while Pennsylvania welcomes it.

From 2010 to 2017, natural gas production plummeted by nearly 70 percent in New York, but it soared almost 1,000 percent in Pennsylvania.  And New York won’t allow us to build a pipeline across because New York is sort of a long state and we can’t have pipelines going across, helping a region that’s not a wealthy region at all.  They have a lot of economic problems.  People are leaving, left and right.

We want to get it over to the waters.  We want to get it over to the oceans.  We want to get it up to New England, where they have the highest energy costs anywhere in the United States.  We can’t get energy because New York doesn’t allow the pipelines to go through.  And that’s going to be very costly for New York, ultimately.

As a result, families in Pennsylvania shale country got more jobs, billions of dollars in royalty payments, and wages that are significantly higher compared to their neighbors just across the state line.

Meanwhile, families in New York — I love New York; that’s where I’m from.  Probably, most of you don’t know that.  (Laughter.)  That’s where I’m from.  They’re burdened with more power outages and electricity rates — you never saw anything like this — that are much, much higher than neighboring states and than your state.  New York energy rates are through the roof.  New England, through the roof.  A lot of it has to do with the fact that we can’t get pipelines through New York.  New York won’t let us.  They won’t let us.

All New York likes to do is sue me.  They like to sue me.  (Laughter.)  They’re always suing.  I said, “Which lawyer is handling that case?”  No, they sue me for everything so they can try to stop us by any means possible.  The radical Left wants to do to America what they’ve done to New York: raise prices, kill jobs, and leave our nation less independent and far less secure.

My vision is the exact opposite.  And we want to work with New York and we want to help New York.  They need jobs in New York so badly.

You know, they talk about the environment.  So you have the state line, and over here you have machinery fracking.  And over here you have nothing, except poverty.  Over here you have people driving new cars and nice cars.  And over here you have cars that are 40 years old.  Now, what does that have to do with the environment?  It’s the same.  It’s an artificial line.

And I wonder what happens when they get down there.  What happens?  I just wonder, is New York losing its wealth?  You know what I’m talking about, right?  What happens when those lines go down and they can go in any direction now?  The equipment is so incredible.

So, hopefully, we can help New York.  I want to help New York so much.  We will never allow ourselves to be at the mercy of foreign energy suppliers.  And that’s what’s fighting us.  They don’t want us to have great energy.  They’ve made a fortune selling us energy.

You probably saw the Straits the other day.  Very few American boats are there.  They capture — Iran, I broke up that deal.  That was a good thing to do.  It’s a whole different country right now.  (Applause.)

But they’re capturing boats from other countries.  They’re not taking our boats.  And one of the things that was brought up by the media, actually — and wisely and correctly brought out — we have very few boats going there anymore because we have our own oil and gas.  We don’t need it from the Middle East anymore.  (Applause.)

And that’s why we’re pursuing a future not only of energy independence — but not just words.  You know, you’ve been hearing “energy independence” for years and years, and you’d hear it.  We have real independence.  But what we want now is not independence; we want American energy dominance.  Dominance.  (Applause.)

Instead of relying on foreign countries, we are now relying on American producers.  And we are relying on American workers to build our own future right here on American soil.  It’s time.  (Applause.)

And together, we’re defending the oil and gas workers who light up our cities and uplift our communities.  We’re fighting for the technicians and construction workers here in Beaver County who are building a powerful engine of American commerce.  There’s no place like what you’re seeing right outside these doors.  There is no place like it.

We’re here once again to stand up for the engineers and the factory workers who will shape the work of your hands into American-made products sold all over the world.  That’s what’s going to happen.  That’s what you’re producing.

And everyday patriots who make this all possible, you are the backbone of America.  The absolute backbone.  And you haven’t been given the honor of having that said by other people.  But you are the backbone of this country.  (Applause.)  It’s true.  So true.

You are the ones who work hard, pay your taxes, build your neighborhoods, obey our laws, safeguard our values, raise up your children, make this land the greatest nation ever to exist on the face of the Earth.  You are the ones who do it.  We work with a lot of people, but you are there and you are doing it.  You’ve always been loyal to America, and now you finally have a President of the United States who is loyal to you.  (Applause.)

Our vision is pro-worker, pro-jobs, pro-family, pro-growth, pro-energy, and 100 percent pro-American.  (Applause.)

And we’re taking care of our military, and we’re taking care of our vets.  Veterans Choice: You’ve been hearing it about for 45 years.  I got it approved.  Veterans Choice.  We’re taking care of our veterans.  We’re taking care of our military like never, ever before.  (Applause.)

Because Americans can do anything, go anywhere, and outperform anyone.  Nobody can beat us.  Nothing can stop us because winning is what Americans do.  Winning is what we know best.  We will keep winning, wining, winning.

And I used to tell you the story about winning.  I used to say that your great leaders would come to Washington and they would say, “President, we’re winning too much.  We can’t take it anymore.  The people of Pennsylvania cannot stand winning.  We haven’t won for years and years and now we’re winning too much.  Mr. President, please, for the good of the people of Pennsylvania, stop winning.  Stop creating all these jobs.  Stop creating all this product.  Please, sir.  Please, stop winning.”

And I said to them, and I will say to them, “We’re never going to stop winning because nobody has ever won like what’s happened over the last couple of years.  Nobody has ever won like you’re winning.”  I’ve more than fulfilled my promises.  Even they said, “He promised things, and he actually produced more than he promised.”  That’s true.  But we’re going to produce more and more.

I just want to thank everybody.  With your help, factory floors across this land are once more crackling with life.  (Applause.)  Our steel mills are fired up and blazing bright.  The assembly lines are roaring.  Industry is booming.  And the hearts of our workers, the American spirit, is soaring higher, stronger, freer, and greater than ever before.

I want to thank you all for giving this nation your very best.  And your very best cannot be beaten.  I want to thank you for filling America with pride.  We are proud of you.  We think you are just incredible, incredible people.  And it’s an honor for me to be with you in Pennsylvania.

Thank you very much.  God bless you.  (Applause.)  God bless you.

END

https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefings-statements/remarks-president-trump-american-energy-manufacturing-monaco-pa/

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The Pronk Pops Show 1210, February 18, 2019, Story 1: Government Is Not The Solution — It is The Problem — Stupid Subsidized States Screaming As Mobile Rich Leave States — Video — Story 2: Investigate and Prosecute The Clinton Obama Democrat Criminal Conspiracy — Videos

Posted on February 18, 2019. Filed under: Blogroll, Breaking News, Bribery, Bribes, Communications, Congress, Corruption, Countries, Crime, High Crimes, House of Representatives, Senate, Subversion, Treason, United States of America | Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

 

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Story 1: Government Is Not The Solution — It is The Problem — Stupid Subsidized States Screaming As Mobile Rich Leave States — Video —

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Record High Name Government as Most Important Problem

Record High Name Government as Most Important Problem

STORY HIGHLIGHTS

  • 35% say government/leadership is top problem facing the country
  • Mentions of government jumped during the shutdown, and increased since
  • Views of government as the top problem have gained since 2001

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Thirty-five percent of Americans name the government, poor leadership or politicians as the greatest problem facing the U.S. This is the highest percentage Gallup has recorded for this concern, edging out the previous high of 33% during the 2013 federal government shutdown.

Line graph. Thirty-five percent of Americans name the government as the most important problem facing the U.S.

The latest update is from a Feb. 1-10 Gallup Poll. Full results from this month can be found at the end of the article.

Gallup has asked Americans what they felt was the most important problem facing the country since 1939 and has regularly compiled mentions of the government since 1964. Prior to 2001, the highest percentage mentioning government was 26% during the Watergate scandal. Thus, the current measure is the highest in at least 55 years.

The current percentage of Americans naming government as the most important problem is nearly twice as high as the 18% recorded in November. That increase likely reflects public frustration with the government shutdown that occurred from late December through most of January. Gallup observed a similar double-digit spike spanning the 2013 government shutdown, from 16% in September 2013 to 33% in October 2013.

Americans have different things in mind when they name the government as the most important problem. An analysis of the verbatim responses to the question from the latest survey finds that 11% of Americans specifically cite “Donald Trump” as the most important problem, while 5% name “the Democrats” or “liberals” and 1% “Congress.” About half of those who say the government is the most important problem — 18% of U.S. adults — blame both parties or cite “gridlock,” “lack of cooperation” or the shutdown more generally. The latter figure has grown from 6% in December and 12% in January.

Since January 2017, about the time Donald Trump took office, the government has been the top problem each month except in the November poll, and in July 2018. In both of those months, immigration edged out the government at the top of the list.

Views of Problematic Government Have Been on the Rise Since 2001

Americans have become more likely to name the government and/or leadership as the country’s greatest problem over the past decade. From 2001 through 2009, yearly averages of this measure were consistently below 10%, but mentions of government as the foremost challenge have become more pervasive in the decade since. In 2010 to 2016, average mentions of the government as the biggest problem ranged from 12% to 19%.

Line graph. The average annual percentage of Americans citing government as the key U.S. problem has grown since 2001.

President Donald Trump’s first two years in office so far have produced the highest average mentions of government as the most important problem for recent presidents, at 20% and 22%. Though just six weeks into the new year, 2019 could top Trump’s first two years if this trend continues.

Few Problems Have Registered Such a High Percentage of Mentions

Gallup began asking about the most important problem on a monthly basis in 2001; since then, few other issues have matched or exceeded the 35% currently mentioning the government.

  • In the immediate months after the 9/11 attacks, mentions of terrorism topped the list as the most important problem, peaking at 46% in October 2001.
  • Mentions of the situation in Iraq as the greatest U.S. problem escalated in early 2007 after President George W. Bush’s announcement of a “surge” in the numbers of American troops sent to the country. The highest percentage naming Iraq as the biggest problem was 38% in February of that year.
  • In the year leading up to and after the global financial crisis of 2008, the percentage of Americans naming “the economy” reached record heights for any mention on Gallup’s list, reaching 58% in November 2008.
  • Mentions of unemployment/jobs as the greatest problem surpassed those of “the economy” at certain points in the years after the financial crisis, with the percentage naming unemployment as the greatest problem peaking at 39% in September 2011, when President Obama unveiled an ambitious jobs plan at a time of high unemployment.

Republicans, Democrats About Equally Likely to Name Government

Mentions of the government have become more frequent among all party groups in recent months — especially Republicans, among whom there has been a 14-point increase in mentions of the government this past month.

While Democrats were more likely than Republicans to name government and leadership as the top problem facing the nation in the year leading up to the latest poll, both party groups are now about as likely to name government as the top U.S. problem.

Line graph. Roughly equal percentages of Democrats and Republics cite the government as the key U.S. problem.

Roughly half of Republicans, Democrats and independents who say the government is the most important problem point to gridlock, lack of bipartisanship, both parties or other general concerns about the way government is operating. As would be expected, Republicans disproportionately mention Democrats or liberals as the problem, while Democrats (as well as independents) disproportionately mention Trump. The number of Democrats who mention Trump specifically has been quite stable in recent months, but there has been a surge in the percentage of Democrats seeing both parties as the problem or citing general concerns about gridlock and lack of cooperation. Likewise, there has been a sharp increase in the number of Republicans and independents seeing both parties, gridlock or related issues as the problem.

Bottom Line

Federal government shutdowns have clear, negative effects on Americans’ views on a variety of measures, including their general satisfaction with the direction of the country. But shutdowns aside, Americans’ views of the government itself as a problem — rather than the means of solving problems — have increased over the past two decades. On one end of Gallup’s 2001-2019 trend is the record low of 1% naming the government as the greatest problem, recorded one month after 9/11. On the other end is the latest 35%, as the longest shutdown on record left bad feelings on both sides of the political aisle.

At the moment, Democrats and Republicans are aligned in this view, though likely for different reasons. For Democrats, the shutdown was a stalemate over a border wall they overwhelmingly reject — from a president of whom few in the party approve. For Republicans — who show an even greater recent increase in mentions of government as the top U.S. problem — the ramifications of losing control of the House of Representatives and the party’s inability to pass legislation it favors may be dawning on the party’s rank and file.

Americans’ Views of the Top Problem Facing the U.S.
Problems mentioned by at least % of respondents in February
Feb. 1-10, 2019
%
The government/Poor leadership 35
Immigration 19
Healthcare 6
Race relations/Racism 5
Unifying the country 4
Poverty/Hunger/Homelessness 4
Environment/Pollution 3
Ethics/Moral/Religious/Family decline 3
Federal budget deficit/Federal debt 3
Economy in general 3
Unemployment/Jobs 3
Lack of respect for each other 2
Education 2
GALLUP, FEB. 1-10, 2019

View complete question responses and trends.

https://news.gallup.com/poll/246800/record-high-name-government-important-problem.aspx

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FISA warrant application supports Nunes memo

The weekend release of a highly-redacted version of the FBI’s application for a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrant to wiretap onetime Trump foreign policy adviser Carter Page has renewed the argument over the Nunes memo — the brief report produced by House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Devin Nunes detailing problems in the application. From the time of the memo’s release in February, Democrats and some in the press have denounced it as a collection of lies and mischaracterizations. On Saturday night, the denouncing started again. “The only thing the newly released FISA documents show is that Republicans have been lying for months,” the lefty think tank Center for American Progress saidin a typical response.

Now, however, we have both the memo and the FISA application, if in a blacked-out state. We can compare the two. And doing so shows the Nunes memo was overwhelmingly accurate. Perhaps some Democrats do not believe it should have been written, or they dispute what it included and left out, or they do not agree with its conclusions, but it was in fact accurate.

The memo comprised a short introduction followed by 13 substantive paragraphs. Here is a look at each one.

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[Read: Devin Nunes: ‘Time to eliminate redactions’]

The first paragraph:

On October 21, 2016, DOJ and FBI sought and received a FISA probable cause order (not under Title VII) authorizing electronic surveillance on Carter Page from the FISC. Page is a US citizen who served as a volunteer advisor to the Trump presidential campaign. Consistent with requirements under FISA, the application had to be first certified by the Director or Deputy Director of the FBI. It then required the approval of the Attorney General, Deputy Attorney General (DAG), or the Senate-confirmed Assistant Attorney General for the National Security Division.

That is accurate. The second paragraph:

The FBI and DOJ obtained one initial FISA warrant targeting Carter Page and three FISA renewals from the FISC. As required by statute (50 U.S.C. 1805 (d)(1)) a FISA order on an American citizen must be renewed by the FISC every 90 days and each renewal requires a separate finding of probable cause. Then-Director James Comey signed three FISA applications in question on behalf of the FBI, and Deputy Director Andrew McCabe signed one. Sally Yates, then-Acting DAG Dana Boente, and DAG Rod Rosenstein each signed one or more FISA applications on behalf of DOJ.

That is accurate. The third paragraph:

Due to the sensitive nature of foreign intelligence activity, FISA submissions (including renewals) before the FISC are classified. As such, the public’s confidence in the integrity of the FISA process depends on the court’s ability to hold the government to the highest standard, particularly as it relates to surveillance of American citizens. However, the FISC’s rigor in protecting the rights of Americans, which is reinforced by 90-day renewals of surveillance orders, is necessarily dependent on the government’s production to the court of all material and relevant facts. This should include information potentially favorable to the target of the FISA application that is known by the government. In the case of Carter Page, the government had at least four independent opportunities before the FISC to accurately provide an accounting of the relevant facts. However, our findings indicate that, as described below, material and relevant information was omitted.

That is accurate, but a reading of the last sentence, of course, depends on one’s definition of “material and relevant.” There is no doubt, however, that Nunes made a case that the information left out of the application, like the specific source of funding for the Steele dossier, was “material and relevant” to the Page case.

The fourth paragraph:

1) The “dossier” compiled by Christopher Steele (Steele dossier) on behalf of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and the Hillary Clinton campaign formed an essential part of the Carter Page FISA application. Steele was a longtime FBI source who was paid over $160,000 by the DNC and Clinton campaign, via the law firm Perkins Coie and research firm Fusion GPS, to obtain derogatory information on Donald Trump’s ties to Russia.

That is accurate. When the Nunes memo was released, there was controversy over its assertion that the dossier formed an “essential” part of the Page FISA application. But Senate Judiciary Committee staff, who reviewed the FISA application separately from the House, concluded that the dossier allegations made up the “bulk” of the application. Even a Washington Post articleSunday purporting to debunk the Nunes memo in light of the FISA application conceded that the dossier played “a prominent role” in the FISA application. Finally, the Nunes memo’s assertion, noted below, that former FBI number-two Andrew McCabe agreed that “no surveillance warrant would have been sought from the FISC without the Steele dossier information,” was not challenged by Democrats when the Nunes memo was made public.

The fifth paragraph:

a) Neither the initial application in October 2016, nor any of the renewals, disclose or reference the role of the DNC, Clinton campaign, or any party/campaign in funding Steele’s efforts, even though the political origins of the Steele dossier were then known to senior DOJ and FBI officials.

That is accurate. Readers will search the FISA application in vain for any specific mention of the DNC, Clinton campaign, or any party/campaign funding of the dossier. For the most part, names were not used in the application, but Donald Trump was referred to as “Candidate #1,” Hillary Clinton was referred to as “Candidate #2,” and the Republican Party was referred to as “Political Party #1.” Thus, the FISA application could easily have explained that the dossier research was paid for by “Candidate #2” and “Political Party #2,” meaning the Democrats. And yet the FBI chose to describe the situation this way, in a footnote: “Source #1…was approached by an identified U.S. person, who indicated to Source #1 that a U.S.-based law firm had hired the identified U.S. person to conduct research regarding Candidate #1’s ties to Russia…The identified U.S. person hired Source #1 to conduct this research. The identified U.S. person never advised Source #1 as to the motivation behind the research into Candidate #1’s ties to Russia. The FBI speculates that the identified U.S. person was likely looking for information that could be used to discredit Candidate #1’s campaign.”

Democrats argue that the FISA Court judges should have been able to figure out, from that obscure description, that the DNC and Clinton campaign paid for the dossier. That seems a pretty weak argument, but in any case, the Nunes memo’s statement that the FISA application did not disclose or reference the role of the DNC and the Clinton campaign is undeniably true.

The sixth paragraph:

b) The initial FISA application notes Steele was working for a named U.S. person, but does not name Fusion GPS and principal Glenn Simpson, who was paid by a U.S. law firm (Perkins Coie) representing the DNC (even though it was known by DOJ at the time that political actors were involved with the Steele dossier). The application does not mention Steele was ultimately working on behalf of — and paid by — the DNC and Clinton campaign, or that the FBI had separately authorized payment to Steele for the same information.

That is accurate. The seventh paragraph:

2) The Carter Page FISA application also cited extensively a September 23, 2016, Yahoo News article by Michael Isikoff, which focuses on Page’s July 2016 trip to Moscow. This article does not corroborate the Steele dossier because it is derived from information leaked by Steele himself to Yahoo News. The Page FISA application incorrectly assesses that Steele did not directly provide information to Yahoo News. Steele has admitted in British court filings that he met with Yahoo News — and several other outlets — in September 2016 at the direction of Fusion GPS. Perkins Coie was aware of Steele’s initial media contacts because they hosted at least one meeting in Washington DC in 2016 with Steele and Fusion GPS where this matter was discussed.

Most of that is accurate. But when the Nunes memo was released, Democrats argued that the FISA application did not use the Yahoo article to corroborate the dossier, but rather — as it used other news accounts of varying reliability — to describe part of the Carter Page story. As it turned out, the application used part of the Yahoo piece in a way that suggested it was corroborating the dossier, but it also used part of it as a news account. So call the Nunes memo’s corroboration claim only partly accurate.

The eighth paragraph:

a) Steele was suspended and then terminated as an FBI source for what the FBI defines as the most serious of violations — an unauthorized disclosure to the media of his relationship with the FBI in an October 30, 2016, Mother Jones article by David Corn. Steele should have been terminated for his previous undisclosed contacts with Yahoo and other outlets in September — before the Page application was submitted to the FISC in October — but Steele improperly concealed from and lied to the FBI about those contacts.

That is accurate. The ninth paragraph:

b) Steele’s numerous encounters with the media violated the cardinal rule of source handling — maintaining confidentiality — and demonstrated that Steele had become a less than reliable source for the FBI.

That is accurate. In the initial FISA application, the FBI argued that Steele had not leaked to the media. In later applications, the bureau admitted Steele had leaked but maintained that he was still credible because he only leaked after providing the dossier allegations.

The tenth paragraph:

3) Before and after Steele was terminated as a source, he maintained contact with DOJ via then-Associate Deputy Attorney General Bruce Ohr, a senior DOJ official who worked closely with Deputy Attorneys General Yates and later Rosenstein. Shortly after the election, the FBI began interviewing Ohr, documenting his communications with Steele. For example, in September 2016, Steele admitted to Ohr his feelings against then-candidate Trump when Steele said he “was desperate that Donald Trump not get elected and was passionate about him not being president.” This clear evidence of Steele’s bias was recorded by Ohr at the time and subsequently in official FBI files — but not reflected in any of the Page FISA applications.

That is accurate. The eleventh paragraph:

a) During this same time period, Ohr’s wife was employed by Fusion GPS to assist in the cultivation of opposition research on Trump. Ohr later provided the FBI with all of his wife’s opposition research, paid for by the DNC and Clinton campaign via Fusion GPS. The Ohrs’ relationship with Steele and Fusion GPS was inexplicably concealed from the FISC.

That is accurate, although one could argue whether the information here was really required for the FISA application; also, the “inexplicably concealed” reference is the opinion of the House committee.

The twelfth paragraph:

4) According to the head of the counterintelligence division, Assistant Director Bill Priestap, corroboration of the Steele dossier was in its “infancy” at the time of the initial Page FISA application. After Steele was terminated, a source validation report conducted by an independent unit within FBI assessed Steele’s reporting as only minimally corroborated. Yet, in early January 2017, Director Comey briefed President-elect Trump on a summary of the Steele dossier, even though it was — according to his June 2017 testimony — “salacious and unverified.” While the FISA application relied on Steele’s past record of credible reporting on other unrelated matters, it ignored or concealed his anti-Trump financial and ideological motivations. Furthermore, Deputy Director McCabe testified before the Committee in December 2017 that no surveillance warrant would have been sought from the FISC without the Steele dossier information.

That is accurate. The thirteenth, and final, paragraph:

5) The Page FISA application also mentions information regarding fellow Trump campaign advisor George Papadopoulos, but there is no evidence of any cooperation or conspiracy between Page and Papadopoulos. The Papadopoulos information triggered the opening of an FBI counterintelligence investigation in late July 2016 by FBI agent Pete Strzok. Strzok was reassigned by the Special Counsel’s Office to FBI Human Resources for improper text messages with his mistress, FBI Attorney Lisa Page (no known relation to Carter Page), where they both demonstrated a clear bias against Trump and in favor of Clinton, whom Strzok had also investigated. The Strzok/Lisa Page texts also reflect extensive discussions about the investigation, orchestrating leaks to the media, and include a meeting with Deputy Director McCabe to discuss an “insurance” policy against President Trump’s election.

That is accurate.

Parts of the Nunes memo, like references to the Strzok-Page texts or Bruce Ohr’s testimony, contain information that was not in the application. But that does not make it any less accurate. The bottom line is that, whatever the criticism it has received, the Nunes memo was almost entirely accurate. The release of the FISA application supports that view.

https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/news/fisa-warrant-application-supports-nunes-memo

 

Seditious conspiracy

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Seditious conspiracy (18 U.S.C. § 2384) is a crime under United States law. It is stated as follows:

If two or more persons in any State or Territory, or in any place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, conspire to overthrow, put down, or to destroy by force the Government of the United States, or to levy war against them, or to oppose by force the authority thereof, or by force to prevent, hinder, or delay the execution of any law of the United States, or by force to seize, take, or possess any property of the United States contrary to the authority thereof, they shall each be fined or imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both.

For a seditious conspiracy charge to be effected, a crime need only be planned, it need not be actually attempted. According to Andres Torres and Jose E. Velazquez, the accusation of seditious conspiracy is of political nature and was used almost exclusively against Puerto Rican independentistas in the twentieth century.[1] However, the act was also used in the twentieth century against communists and radicals (United Freedom Front,[2] the Provisional IRA in Massachusetts), neo-Nazis,[3] and Islamic terrorists including Omar Abdel-Rahman.[4]

 

Background

Since World War I, the federal government has won numerous seditious conspiracy cases against Puerto Rican independentistascommunists and others.[5]

Notable cases

See also

References

  1. ^ The Puerto Rican movement: voices from the diaspora.Andrés Torres and Jose E. Velazquez. Temple University Press. 1998. p. 238. Retrieved 2 June 2013.
  2. ^ AP (1989-01-12). “After 9 Months of Delays, U.S. Tries 3 for Sedition”The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-10-28.
  3. ^ “Louis Beam” at Anti-Defamation League (ADL) website.Archived 2011-12-19 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ Perez, Richard (2 October 1995). “A Gamble Pays Off as the Prosecution Uses an Obscure 19th-Century Law”. New York Times. Retrieved 8 April 2010.
  5. ^ Leonard Zeskind. Blood and Politics: The History of the White Nationalist Movement from the Margins to the Mainstream. pp. 144−171. Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux. 2009.
  6. ^ ProLIBERTAD: ProLIBERTAD Campaign for the Freedom of Puerto Rican Political Prisoners and Prisoners of War: Arm the Spirit 30 October 1995. Hartford-hwp.com May 29, 2013.
  7. ^ Richard Perez, “The Terror Conspiracy—The Charges—A Gamble Pays Off as the Prosecution Uses an Obscure 19th-Century Law”, The New York Times, October 2, 1995.
  8. ^ “Nine Members of a Militia Group Charged with Seditious Conspiracy and Related Offenses”, press release, United States Department of Justice, March 29, 2010.

Sources

  • Avrich, Paul, Sacco and Vanzetti: The Anarchist Background (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1991)

External links

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seditious_conspiracy

 

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The Pronk Pops Show 1042, March 1, 2018,  Story 1: Trump Declares Trade War With Huge Tax/Tariff Increase on Steel and Aluminum Imports — Government Intervention or Meddling Is Not The Answer — Currency Wars Lead To Trade Wars Lead To Real Wars — Competition and Consumer Sovereignty Is The Answer — Big Government Interventionist Trump The New Hoover/Roosevelt/Nixon Progressive Interventionist and Big Spender — Decline and Fall of The American Empire — QT — Quantitative Tightening and Inflation — Videos — Story 2: New Cold War and Arms Race Between United States and Russia — Targeting Trump in Florida — Videos

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 Story 1: Trump Declares Trade War With Huge Tax/Tariff Increase on Steel and Aluminum Imports — Government Intervention or Meddling Is Not The Answer — Currency Wars Lead To Trade Wars Lead To Real Wars — Competition and Consumer Sovereignty Is The Answer — Big Government Interventionist Trump The New Hoover/Roosevelt/Nixon Progressive Interventionist and Big Spender — Decline and Fall of The American Empire — QT — Quantitative Tightening and Inflation — Videos

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The Real Financial Crisis is About to Hit – Peter Schiff

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Peter Schiff VS Ron Paul VS Gerald Celente – THE ECONOMIC CRASH COMING By 2020

JIM ROGERS: The worst crash in our lifetime is coming

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Craig Hemke (NS) Max Keiser – THE “KING OF DEBT”

Eisenhower warns us of the military industrial complex

 

Republicans furious as Trump announces huge new tariffs: ‘A massive tax increase on American families’

President Donald Trump.

Kevin Lamarque/Reuters

  • President Donald Trump on Thursday announced new tariffs on imports of steel and aluminum, setting off a firestorm among Republicans.
  • Sen. Ben Sasse called the move “a massive tax increase on American families.”
  • Conservative policy groups also came out against the move.

Republicans and conservative groups were furious with President Donald Trump’s Thursday’s announcement that the US would impose new tariffs — taxes on imports — of 25% for steel and 10% for aluminum.

The move is designed to boost domestic production of US metals, but economists, lawmakers, and even many White House officials are worried it could lead to devastating consequences for the US economy.

In response, several Republicans painted Trump’s announcement as a grave mistake.

“Let’s be clear: The President is proposing a massive tax increase on American families,” Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska said in a statement. “Protectionism is weak, not strong. You’d expect a policy this bad from a leftist administration, not a supposedly Republican one.”

Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah, a key figure in the passage of the North American Free Trade Agreement who supports free-trade policies, also urged Trump to reconsider.

“Tariffs on steel and aluminum are a tax hike the American people don’t need and can’t afford,” Hatch said in a statement. “I encourage the president to carefully consider all of the implications of raising the cost of steel and aluminum on American manufacturers and consumers.”

Sen. John Cornyn of Texas, the second-highest-ranking member of the Republican Senate leadership, told Business Insider that the move was coming from a good place but could lead to negative outcomes such as a trade war.

“Obviously we don’t want to be taken advantage of by our trading partners, but then there is always a danger of retaliation and creating trade wars,” Cornyn said. “So it’s a very delicate balance.”

Cornyn also said that while senators knew the decision was “imminent,” the announcement on Thursday was unexpected.

Sen. Pat Roberts of Kansas, the head of the agriculture committee, told CNN that the move would be likely to lead to retaliation against American farmers.

“Every time you do this, you get a retaliation, and agriculture is the No. 1 target,” Roberts said. “I think this is terribly counterproductive for the ag economy, and I’m not very happy.”

In addition to lawmakers, conservative action groups joined the pile-on. Adam Brandon, the president of FreedomWorks, said the decision could reverse economic gains from the new GOP tax law.

“The Trump administration would mar its otherwise strong economic record by imposing these tariffs,” Brandon said in a statement. “These could be a lethal blow to all the economic success this administration has ushered in. Higher costs to producers and distributors of goods always get passed on to us, the consumers.”

Joe Perticone contributed reporting.

http://www.businessinsider.com/donald-trump-tariff-on-steel-aluminum-imports-republicans-blast-2018-3

 

Trump’s steel and aluminum tariffs could rattle Canada’s economy and NAFTA

  • Canada’s weak economy had GDP growth of 1.7 percent in the fourth quarter, and its stock market is down 5 percent year-to-date.
  • Canada exports nearly 90 percent of its steel to the U.S., the most of any country.
  • Canada accounts for 41 percent of America’s aluminum imports.
  • Tariffs could impact the interconnected supply chain of many industries, including autos, and this could hurt NAFTA renegotiation talks.
  • On Monday Trump signaled he may drop tariffs if a ‘fair’ NAFTA agreement is signed.
Bryan Borzykowski, special to CNBC.com

Canada's Justin Trudeau: Tariffs 'absolutely unacceptable'

Canada’s Justin Trudeau: Tariffs ‘absolutely unacceptable’  

There’s never a good time for a trade war, but for Canada the announcement of possible tariffs on steel and aluminum imports comes at a particularly difficult moment for the country.

The Great White North is currently engaged in what’s become a bitter battle over NAFTA’s future, and it was announced Friday that its GDP grew at 1.7 percent in the fourth quarter, much slower than the 4 percent it was growing at previously. Its stock market is down about 5 percent year-to-date and was flat over the last 12 months.

On Monday, Trump tweeted that his hasty announcement may not be implemented for Canada and Mexico if a fair NAFTA agreement is negotiated. Canadian market watchers are hoping this will be the case.

After aerospace-related trade flare-ups, fights over softwood lumberand President Donald Trump’s continuous verbal jabs at the country, the last thing Canada needs now is to get into another cross-border brawl.

“Canada seems to get kicked when they’re down,” said Barry Schwartz, vice president and chief investment officer at Baskin Financial Services, a Toronto-based wealth management firm. “We’re dealing with so many things at the same time, and Canada hasn’t even done anything wrong.”

The hit on Canada’s economy

Imports on tariffs could hit the country particularly hard. Canadaexports nearly 90 percent of its steel to the United States, while it accounts for 16 percent of all U.S. steel imports, the most out of any country. It also accounts for 41 percent of America’s aluminum imports. Trump’s main target in this, China, barely exports any steel to the United States, with America ranking 26th as a destination for Chinese steel imports, according to the International Trade Administration.

While there aren’t publicly listed steel and aluminum companies in Canada of any significance anymore — they were all bought in the mid-2000s by larger international concerns when demand for commodities from China was soaring — putting a 25 percent tariff on steel and 10 percent tariff on aluminum should make goods in other sectors, such as auto, defense and aerospace, more expensive to produce and pricier to buy. If that happens, then people and companies may spend less in other areas, which could then impact a number of sectors.

Here’s how Trump’s tariffs could affect Canada

Here’s how Trump’s tariffs could affect Canada  

“Resources will be shifted toward these two sectors and away from everything else,” said John Curtis, a senior fellow at the C.D. Howe Institute and the founding chief economist at what used to be Canada’s Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade. “That means people will have to pay more, so they’ll buy less of everything else in the economy.”

Where a steel tariff might have the most impact, though, is on Canada and America’s interconnected supply chain, of which many companies big and small are a part of, Curtis said. For instance, cars assembled in Canada have parts made in the United States and vice versa. Cars are often being shipped back and forth between the two countries until final assembly.

“Parts move back and forth until it might finally get made in Canada,” said Patrick Leblond, a senior fellow the Ottawa’s Centre For International Governance Innovation. “Then that car will get exported back to the U.S. Is there going to be tax every time that happens?”

Trade war worries

Steel and aluminum tariffs should be worrisome for companies and investors alike, but the big question that everyone has on their minds now is, what does this mean for NAFTA?

That question likely won’t be answered anytime soon. In a tweet Monday morning, Trump called out Canada: “We have large trade deficits with Mexico and Canada. NAFTA, which is under renegotiation right now, has been a bad deal for U.S.A. Massive relocation of companies & jobs. Tariffs on Steel and Aluminum will only come off if new & fair NAFTA agreement is signed. Also, Canada must treat our farmers much better.”

Threatening to remove tariffs only if the administration gets what it thinks is a good deal from NAFTA surely won’t go over well with Canada and Mexico. (And the United States has a trade surplus with Canada, not a deficit, according to the Office of the United States Trade Representative.)

Still, Leblond doesn’t think these tariffs will impact discussions, as negotiators likely are focused more on technical and legal issues right now than steel. Also, when the U.S. slapped a 20.8 percent tariff on Canadian lumber producers for softwood lumber imports, NAFTA talkskept going. (Canada did take its fight with the United States to the World Trade Organization, though.)

However, it certainly doesn’t help things, Curtis said, and could make negotiations much more awkward and tense. Canadian foreign minister Chrystia Freeland, who is part of the negotiating team, said sternly that these tariffs were “absolutely unacceptable” and that Canada is prepared to “take responsive measures to defend its trade interests and workers.”

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau echoed Freeland’s comments, adding that “any disruption to this integrated market would be significant and serious.”

Some market analysts do foresee a grave threat to NAFTA in Trump’s tariff move. But if Canada and other countries do indeed retaliate with tariffs of their own and a trade war begins in earnest, then whether NAFTA stays or goes could ultimately be of lesser importance. It could upend global trade as we know it, Leblond said. He’s particularly concerned about Trump using a national security excuse to impose tariffs.

Avery Shenfeld, chief economist at CIBC Capital Markets, said it’s a double-edged sword in terms of the NAFTA negotiations. Unless Canada gains an exemption, a war of words and actions on trade isn’t a helpful backdrop for reasoned negotiations. But it also helps satisfy Trump’s protectionist voting bloc, perhaps easing the pressure on the White House to take a hard line on the NAFTA deal.

These sorts of disputes underscore why Canada believes that the appeal process under NAFTA is a critical piece of the puzzle. The Trump administration wants a deal that excludes that provision, but without it Canada can face spurious rulings against its exports even with a “free trade” agreement in force, Shenfeld said. “The latest claim, that U.S. national security is imperiled by the use of Canadian steel or aluminum in U.S. manufacturing, seems baseless, considering that Canada has been America’s steadfast ally,” he said.

“If everyone can now say we’re going to impose tariffs because we need to protect what’s important and use national security as a justification, then everyone will lose,” Leblond said. “[Canada] could put a ban on California wine; China could impose constraints on intellectual property rights or innovation. The fear is that it will undermine the WTO process, and for what? To protect a small portion of U.S. manufacturing jobs?”

Sagging stocks

While things could change between now and April 11, when Trump will decide whether to impose the steel tariff, and April 19, when he must make a decision on aluminum tariffs, stocks have taken a hit from the announcement.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index representing Canadian stocks hasn’t been hit as hard as the S&P 500 — the market is almost flat now since the announcement — but some companies have seen their share prices decline more significantly. Global auto parts supplier Magna, for example, is down 3.9 percent and shares of aerospace giant Bombardier fell by nearly 6 percent when the markets opened Friday but have regained some ground since.

More from Global Investing Hot Spots:

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Jeff Mills, managing director and co-chief investment strategist at Pittsburgh-based PNC Asset Management Group, isn’t surprised that stocks in the United States and elsewhere are selling off post-announcement, though U.S. stock did rebound on Friday afternoon.

“The policy change will very likely increase costs for all consumers, which means it will serve to reduce some of the benefit of the recently passed tax bill,” he said. “Markets are now worried about countermeasures from other countries, and investors are starting to wonder what other protectionist measures Trump could take.”

Baskin Financial’s Schwartz doesn’t think the Canadian stock market will take that much of a hit over these tariffs specially — the S&P/TSX is already underperforming other markets – but if a trade war heats up then stocks in Canada and around the globe will see big declines.

“Who knows what will happen, but I presume the direction would be negative,” he said. “The price of goods for everything around the world would go up, inflation would rise, and while companies ultimately adjust to inflation, stocks will be negative while that adjustment period happens.”

Global investors can’t do much now, added Mills, as the exact details are still largely unknown, though he does think, generally, people should be making sure they’re comfortable with the risk they’re taking in their portfolios. Any investors interested in Canada, though, should hope that Trump, at the very least, makes the country tariff-exempt.

“Canada is probably the most penalized as things stand today,” Mills said. “Perhaps cooler heads prevail over the weekend and the tariffs end up being less broad-based.”

https://www.cnbc.com/2018/03/02/trumps-steel-aluminum-tariffs-may-rattle-canadas-economy-and-nafta.html

 

‘Trade wars are good,’ Trump says, defying global concern over tariffs

The European Union raised the possibility of taking countermeasures, France said the duties would be unacceptable and China urged Trump to show restraint. Canada, the biggest supplier of steel and aluminum to the United States, said it would retaliate if hit by U.S. tariffs.

U.S. stock indexes recouped some losses on Friday, but were on track to end the week in the red as investors fretted over a possible global trade war. World equity markets slid further and the U.S. dollar dropped to its lowest point in more than two years against the yen.

Trump said on Thursday that a plan for tariffs of 25 percent on steel imports and 10 percent on aluminum products would be formally announced next week.

“When a country (USA) is losing many billions of dollars on trade with virtually every country it does business with, trade wars are good, and easy to win,” Trump said on Twitter on Friday.

In a later social media post, Trump said his aim was to protect U.S. jobs in the face of cheaper foreign products.

“We must protect our country and our workers. Our steel industry is in bad shape. IF YOU DON’T HAVE STEEL, YOU DON’T HAVE A COUNTRY!” he wrote.

Many economists say that instead of increasing employment, price increases for consumers of steel and aluminum such as the auto and oil industries will destroy more U.S. jobs than they create.

RETALIATION LIKELY

Major U.S. trade partners are likely to hit back.

Europe has drawn up a list of U.S. products on which to apply tariffs if Trump follows through on his plan.

“We will put tariffs on Harley-Davidson, on bourbon and on blue jeans – Levi’s,” European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker told German television.

Trump’s threats to unleash a trade war over steel crushed any hopes of substantial progress in current talks with Canada and Mexico to rework the North American Free Trade Agreement

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said any U.S. tariffs on steel and aluminum imports would be“absolutely unacceptable” and vowed to continue to engage with U.S. officials on the issue.

The International Monetary Fund also expressed concern about the proposed tariffs and said they likely would damage the U.S. economy as well as the economies of other nations.

Trump’s announcement came after what one person with direct knowledge of the discussions described as a night of“chaos” in the White House due to frequent switching of positions in the administration.

While Trump often lays out stark policy positions which he later rolls back as part of a negotiating tactic, White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said the levels of the planned tariffs were not expected to change.

 

Capital Alpha Partners, a policy research group in Washington, said a quick reversal by Trump was highly unlikely.

“We also don’t see a chance for fine tuning, exceptions, carve outs, or a country-by-country policy” in the short term, the group said in a research note.“We would be hopeful that the policy could be modified in time.”

The United States is the world’s biggest steel importer, buying 35.6 million tonnes in 2017.

Peter Navarro, a White House adviser with largely protectionist views on trade, brushed off the negative effects of tariffs on U.S. industry.

    He said a 10 percent tariff on aluminum would add one cent to the cost of a can of beer, $45 to a car and $20,000 to a Boeing 727 Dreamliner.“Big price effects? Negligible price effects,” he told Fox News.

ELUXB.STSTOCKHOLM STOCK EXCHANGE
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But home appliance maker Electrolux (ELUXb.ST) said it was delaying a $250 million expansion of its plant in Tennessee as it was worried U.S. steel prices would rise and make manufacturing there less competitive.

Trump’s administration has imposed a series of trade duties on a range of goods from solar panels to washing machines.

It is even studying whether America’s rubber band makers need protection as he seeks to boost domestic manufacturing and employment. The decision on steel and aluminum was the most wide ranging and provocative to date and there is the prospect of more to come, with the government holding an investigation into alleged theft of U.S. intellectual property by China.

The EU, which sees itself as a global counterweight to a protectionist-leaning Trump, made no mention of retaliation but spoke of countermeasures that conform with World Trade Organization (WTO) rules.

Safeguard measures, last deployed by Europe in 2002 after then-U.S. President George W. Bush imposed steel import duties, would be designed to guard against steel and aluminum being diverted to Europe from elsewhere if U.S. tariffs come in.

But to conform with WTO rules such measures would have to apply to imports from all countries and could also hit producers including China, India, Russia, South Korea and Turkey.

Governor Scott Walker of Wisconsin, a fellow Republican, urged Trump to rethink the tariffs.

“If the president wants to protect good-paying, family-supporting jobs in America, especially here in Wisconsin, then he should reconsider the administration’s position on these tariffs, particularly on ultra-thin aluminum,” Walker said in a statement.

China, which Trump frequently accuses of unfair trade practices, called for restraint from the United States.

“China urges the United States to show restraint in using protective trade measures, respect multilateral trade rules, and make a positive contribution to international trade order,” Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said.

Although China accounts for only 2 percent of U.S. steel imports, its massive industry expansion has helped produce a global steel glut that has driven down prices.

Economists say that Trump’s own expansionary budget policies will fuel ever larger trade deficits, essentially defeating his stated aim of having“balanced trade” with individual countries.

Additional reporting by Tom Westbrook in Sydney, Tom Daly in Beijing, Philip Blenkinsop and Robert-Jan Bartunek in Brussels, Doina Chiacu, Eric Walsh and Makini Brice in Washington, and Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss in New York; Writing by David Clarke and Alistair Bell; Editing by Paul Simao and James Dalgleish

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trade/trade-wars-are-good-trump-says-defying-global-concern-over-tariffs-idUSKCN1GE1PM

The White House’s war over steel tariffs, explained

The move sparked an internal feud at the White House. Then the stock market plunged.

Spencer Platt/Getty Images

The Trump administration may have finally launched the trade war many expected was coming.

President Trump announced plans to impose a 25 percent tariff on all steel imports and a 10 percent tariff on aluminum imports — a move that will likely anger US trading partners and American businesses that buy steel. Wall Street panned the move, with the Dow falling more than 500 points in the hours after Trump’s statement.

The announcement came amid a fierce fight within the White House over the proposed tariffs, according to CNBC. News reports Thursday morning said that Trump would disclose the new policy later in the day. Then the announcement was reportedly postponed. Finally, at a White House meeting with steel executives, Trump said that the tariffs would indeed be implemented. “We’ll be signing it next week,” he told the group, according to a pool report. “And you’ll have protection for a long time in a while.”

The dispute pitted free trade advocates, such as chief economic adviser Gary Cohn, against trade hawks like White House adviser Peter Navarro.

In the end, the trade hawks won. The Commerce Department will impose the tariffs under a rarely used law that allows emergency trade sanctions for “national security.”

Protecting the US steel industry from foreign competition has been a top priority for Trump’s trade team since day one. They’ve framed the issue as a fight to preserve jobs for American steelworkers, who have seen their jobs disappear as a result of automation and globalization.

Coincidentally (or not), Trump’s trade team has deep ties to the US steel industry, and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross made his fortune investing in distressed steel companies. (It’s also worth noting, as Vox’s Matthew Yglesias points out, that the Metals Service Center Institute, a trade group that favors anti-import measures, held last year’s annual conference at the Trump Doral resort in Miami.)

https://www.vox.com/2018/3/1/17066838/white-house-trump-steel-tariffs

What you need to know about the Trump steel tariffs US president chooses the most drastic option available to him Share on Twitter (opens new window)

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Shawn Donnan in Washington YESTERDAY

Donald Trump has said he will impose new tariffs on imports of steel and aluminium, fuelling fears that the US is about to start a trade war with China and other major trading partners.

The move triggered a sharp sell-off in financial markets, and prompted complaints from across the broader business community that US companies would be hit by higher prices.

Here are five things you need to know.

Mr Trump has chosen the most drastic option available The president said he would sign an order announcing 25 per cent tariffs on steel imports and 10 per cent tariffs on aluminium imports. The announcement followed investigations that Mr Trump ordered last year into whether a surge in imports undermined the US’s ability to source the steel and aluminium it needs to build military equipment such as tanks and warships, as well as the nation’s broader economic security. Last month, the commerce department recommended three separate options for each metal: a global tariff, tariffs targeted at China and other key countries mixed with quotas, and a universal quota. Mr Trump opted for the global tariff option, potentially subjecting imports from all countries to the hefty levy.  Question is whether this makes sense economically The US steel and aluminium industries argue that they have faced an existential assault for more than a decade from China, which has become the world’s largest producer of both metals and has flooded global markets with cheap products. The tariffs are intended to restrict imports and allow the US steel and aluminium industries to increase production and use idle capacity, as well as rehire workers.  But history shows that imposing tariffs to protect one industry often results in pain for another. According to industry groups, about 6.5m people are employed in the US in businesses that use steel and aluminium. After President George W Bush imposed tariffs on steel imports in 2002, a study found that the move had cost the US about 200,000 jobs.  As a result, many Republicans see tariffs as a mistake, and worry that such a broad move will undermine other efforts such as tax reform intended to boost economic growth.  “The president is right to target unfair trade, but blanket tariffs that sweep up fairly traded steel and aluminium can backfire and harm our businesses and workers,” said Kevin Brady, the Republican congressman who chairs the House ways and means committee. China is unlikely to suffer the consequences The US aluminium and steel industries have long been clamouring for protection from what they claim is unfair competition from China. But following a series of product and country-specific tariffs introduced in recent years, China now accounts for very little of the steel or aluminium imported into the US. Instead, the leading source for the US of both metals is Canada. Other major Nato members such as Germany are also major exporters of steel to the US.  Many trade experts expect there will be a process for countries and companies to apply to be exempted from the tariffs. For example, Canada has long been considered part of the US national security industrial base, which, lawyers say, means it has a strong case to be exempted. Mexico could also apply for an exception given its membership in the North American Free Trade Agreement, although that pact is now being renegotiated.  But such a process is also likely to lead to furious lobbying of the president by companies who will have to seek to curry favour with the administration, said Phil Levy, a former trade adviser to Mr Bush. “It is just about the polar opposite of draining the swamp,” Mr Levy said. China and the EU are likely to retaliate EU officials have made clear that they are prepared to retaliate against any US move to impose tariffs and challenge them in the World Trade Organization.

EU member states have already begun discussing possible targets for retaliation. In the EU’s line of fire are likely to be politically sensitive products such as Kentucky Bourbon — from top Republican senator Mitch McConnell’s home state — and cheese from Wisconsin, the home of House Speaker Paul Ryan.  Wendy Cutler, a former senior US trade official who heads the Asia Society Policy Institute, said China would also likely respond with “quick and proportional” trade measures.

Ending a longstanding ceasefire in the global trading system Ever since it was established following the second world war, the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade has included a loophole that allows countries to invoke “national security” to impose tariffs and other trade barriers in the event of war or other national threats. But the US and other countries have studiously stayed away from using that loophole for decades, for fear that doing so would lead others to do the same.  By invoking national security in the steel and aluminium tariffs, Mr Trump is throwing out that decades-old gentleman’s agreement. Part of the problem is that the president has made his disdain for the WTO clear.

If the US is challenged at the WTO and a panel finds that Washington wrongly invoked national security, Mr Trump — if he is still president — could decide to ignore the finding, or even pull the US out of the body altogether. Others worry that it could also have the long-feared “domino effect”, with countries such as China using national security as an excuse for their own trade measures.

“This will either close the door on being able to self-define ‘national security’ or open the door on being able to block imports simply by waving the ‘national security’ flag,” said John Veroneau, who served as a senior trade official in the administration of Mr Bush and is now at law firm Covington & Burling.

Elsewhere, the proposed tariffs are unlikely to sway US monetary policy in the short term given the direct impact on America’s $19tn economy is likely to be modest.

Even if import prices are lifted by the amount of the tariff it would add a modest 5 basis points of price pressure – which may or many not be passed onto consumer prices, according to JP Morgan calculations. If the Trump administration’s approach, however, triggers retaliation and escalates into a broader trade war, the consequences would be more serious, adding to inflationary pressures in the US while damaging growth and complicating the policy outlook.

https://www.ft.com/content/d8c3812a-1d97-11e8-aaca-4574d7dabfb6

Trump Repeats Nixon’s Folly

This president isn’t the first to embrace a “trade war” to bolster his populist credentials—but in the end, it’s ordinary people who will bear its cost.

President Trump just raised the price of cars, beer, vacations, and apartment rentals.

That’s not what most headlines say. Those headlines say that Trump will raise tariffs on steel and aluminum. Higher tariffs mean higher prices for those inputs—and therefore for the products ultimately made from those outputs. Automotive and construction top the largest users of steel in the United States. Aluminum is heavily used to make airplanes, cars and trucks, and beverage containers, and also in construction.

The last time the U.S. imposed steel tariffs, back in 2002, the project was abandoned after 20 months. A 2003 report commissioned by industries that consumed steel estimated that the Bush steel tariffs cost in excess of 200,000 jobs—or more than the total number of people then employed in the entire steel industry at the time.

This time the cost-benefit ratio is likely to skew much worse. There are fewer steel jobs to protect this time. Auto sales growth has stalled. The first warnings of consumer price inflation are appearing.

But Trump wanted tariffs, and tariffs he has got. Even by Trump standards, the decision-making process was chaos. As late as 9 p.m. last night, it remained undecided whether there would be an announcement today at all—never mind what that announcement would be. Key congressional committee chairs were unconsulted and uninformed.

The president as so often relied on junk information. The advice of the economic populist Peter Navarro(previously best known for blood-curdling anti-China documentaries) was heeded over that of actual trade experts. Industries seeking protection reportedly bought commercials on Fox & Friends. Apparently a decisive event in the debate was the firing of staff secretary Rob Porter, after revelations that he had engaged in spousal abuse. Porter had also chaired the weekly trade debate, forcing the president to confront the costs and harms of protectionism. His removal also empowered Trump’s worst instincts.

The usual rules of trade policy were ignored. For authority, Trump invoked a trade law premised on protecting war-essential industries. Yet this authority is plainly a pretext. The Department of Defense intervention in the debate shredded the logic of protectionists like Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, himself a former steel man.

U.S. military requirements for steel and aluminum each only represent about 3 percent of U.S. production. Therefore, DoD does not believe that the findings in the reports [of harm to domestic steel and aluminum producers from foreign competition] impact the ability of DoD programs to acquire the steel or aluminum necessary to meet national defense requirements.

What did alarm the Department of Defense about proposed steel and aluminum tariffs was potential harm to vital U.S. alliances. China does not rank among the top 10 steel exporters to the United States. That list is topped by Canada, followed by Brazil. In third place is South Korea, an indispensable ally in the preemptive war the Trump administration is now contemplating against North Korea.

Canada also heads the list of aluminum exporters. For that reason, DoD pleaded for even more caution with regard to aluminum tariffs than steel. “[If] the Administration takes action on steel, DoD recommends waiting before taking further steps on aluminum.”

Trump announced simultaneous action on both—without itemizing which countries would be subject to the tariffs, and which exempt. Trump’s unpredictability and threatening language have not only jolted U.S. financial markets, but have done further damage to the U.S.-led alliance system. European Union trade ministers agreed earlier this week to retaliate if the U.S. imposes steel tariffs, further degrading a U.S.-EU relationship already badly damaged by Trump’s hostility to NATO and deference to Russia.

Donald Trump is often compared to Richard Nixon in his disdain for law and ethics. The parallel applies to economics too. Nixon in 1971 quit the Bretton Woods agreement and imposed a surtax on all imports. The “shock” disrupted the world economy and profoundly angered formerly trusting friends already uneasy over the war in Vietnam. But Nixon, who knew little and cared less about economics, had his eye fixed on one concern only: the 1972 election. His emergency economic measures—joined to a loosening of monetary policy and a big increase in Social Security payouts the next year—were selected with an eye to one concern only. In the words of Allen Matusow, the shrewdest student of Nixon’s economic policy, “Somehow he had to make the economy hum by 1972 or face likely defeat in his quest for reelection.” What that meant in practice, Matsuow wrote, was that Nixon governed not according to what would work in the long term, but according to “the prevailing mood of the two-thirds of the country he called the ‘constituency of uneducated people.’”

Nixon did indeed win in 1972. He also bequeathed his country not only the worst political scandal in its history to date, but a decade of stagflation that bore most heavily upon the very people Nixon claimed to champion. We’ve been there before; it looks like we’re returning there again.

https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2018/03/steel-tariffs-consequences/554690/

Peter Navarro

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Peter Navarro
White House National Trade Council Director Peter Navarro in Orval Office in January 2017.jpg

Peter Navarro in the White HouseOval Officein January 2017
Director of the National Trade Council
Assumed office
January 20, 2017
President Donald Trump
Preceded by Position established
Personal details
Born July 15, 1949 (age 68)
Political party Democratic
Education Tufts University (BA)
Harvard University (MPAPhD)

Peter Navarro (born July 15, 1949) is an American economist who currently serves as the Assistant to the President, Director of Trade and Industrial Policy, and the Director of the White House National Trade Council, a newly created entity in the executive branch of the U.S. federal government.[1] A former professor of economics and public policy at the Paul Merage School of BusinessUniversity of California, Irvine, Navarro is the author of over a dozen books, including Death by China.

Navarro is known as a staunch critic of China and strong proponent of reducing U.S. trade deficits. He has accused Germany and China of currency manipulation. He has called for increasing the size of the American manufacturing sector, setting high tariffs, and repatriating global supply chains. He is also a strong opponent of the Trans-Pacific Partnership. His views on trade are widely considered unorthodox by other economists.

Early life and education

Navarro was born on July 15, 1949. Navarro’s father, a saxophonist and clarinetist, led a house band, which played summers in New Hampshire and winters in Florida.[2] His parents divorced when he was 9 or 10.[2]Subsequently, he lived with his mother, a Saks Fifth Avenue secretary, in Palm Beach, Florida.[2] He lived in Bethesda, Maryland, during his teenage years.[2]

Navarro graduated from Tufts University in 1972 with a Bachelor of Arts degree. He earned a Master of Public Administration from Harvard University‘s John F. Kennedy School of Government in 1979, and a PhD in Economics from Harvard in 1986.[3] Shortly after graduation from Tufts, Navarro spent three years in the U.S. Peace Corps, serving in Thailand.[3]

Career

Policy analysis

In the 1970s, Navarro served as a policy analyst for the Urban Services Group, the Massachusetts Energy Office, and the United States Department of Energy.[3]

Professor Peter Navarro talks his work Death by China and how China cheats in the world trade system at University of Michigan in 2012

Navarro’s work has appeared in Barron’sBloomberg BusinessweekLos Angeles TimesThe Boston Globe, the Chicago Tribune, the International Herald TribuneThe New York TimesThe Wall Street JournalHarvard Business ReviewMIT Sloan Management Review and The Journal of Business.[4] He has appeared on Bloomberg TV and radio, BBCCNNNPR, and Marketplace. He is a contributor to CNBC and has appeared on 60 Minutes.[4] He also writes investment articles for thestreet.com.[5] In 2012, Navarro directed and produced a poorly received[6]documentary film based on his book, Death by China.[7] The film was released under the same title and narrated by Martin Sheen.

Navarro’s policy prescriptions include that “U.S. should be tough on trade, crack down on intellectual property theft, tax Chinese exports, combat Chinese mercantilism, [and] bring jobs home.”[8]

Academics

professor of economics and public policy at University of California, Irvine for over 20 years, Navarro has worked on energy issues and the relationship between the United States and Asia.[9] He has received multiple teaching awards for MBA courses he has taught.[10] Before joining the UC Irvine faculty, Navarro worked as a research associate in Harvard University’s Energy and Environmental Policy Center from 1981 to 1985.

As a doctoral student in 1984 Nararro wrote a book titled, The Policy Game: How Special Interests and Ideologues are Stealing America, which discussed that special interest groups had led the United States to “a point in its history where it cannot grow and prosper.” In the book he also called for greater worker’s compensation by those that had lost jobs to trade and foreign competition. His doctoral thesis on why corporations donate to charity is one of his highest cited works. He has also done research in the topic of wind energy with Frank Harris, a former student of his.[11]

He then lectured at the University of California, San Diego, where he also served as an assistant professor, teaching courses in business and government.[3] Prior to teaching, Navarro worked in Washington, D.C. as an energy and environmental policy analyst.[12] Navarro has published peer-reviewed economics research on energy policy, charity, deregulation and the economics of trash collection.[8][13][14] According to the Economist, Navarro “is a prolific writer, but has no publications in top-tier academic journals.”[15]

Academic and research authorship

Navarro is a prolific author with nearly a dozen books written on various topics in economics and specializing in issues of balance of trade. The Coming China Wars: Where They Will Be Fought, How They Can Be Won is a book by published by FT Press in (2006). Navarro examines China as an emerging world power confronting challenges at home and abroad as it struggles to exert itself in the global market. He also investigates how China’s role in international commerce is creating conflicts with nations around the world over energynatural resources, the environment, intellectual property, and other issues. A review in Publishers Weekly describes the book as “comprehensive” and “contemporary” and concludes that it “will teach readers to understand the dragon, just not how to vanquish it”.[16]

Death by China: Confronting the Dragon – A Global Call to Action (2011) is a non-fiction book by Navarro and Greg Autry[17] that chronicles “from currency manipulation and abusive trade policies, to deadly consumer products,” the alleged threats to America’s economic dominance in the 21st century posed by China’s Communist Party. Navarro argues that China violates fair trade by “illegal export subsidies and currency manipulation, effectively flooding the U.S. markets” and unfairly making it “virtually impossible” for American companies to compete.[18] It is a critique of “global capitalism” including foreign labor practices and environmental protection.[19] Currency manipulation and subsidies are stated as reasons that “American companies cannot compete because they’re not competing with Chinese companies, they’re competing with the Chinese government.”[20] Ronnie Scheib, from Variety, says “One need not fully subscribe to Peter Navarro’s demonization to appreciate his lucid wake-up call to the imminent dangers of the huge U.S.-China trade imbalance and its disastrous impact on the American economy.”[18]

Politics

Navarro ran for office in San DiegoCalifornia three times as a Democrat. In 1992, he ran for mayor as an Independent, finishing first (38.2%) in the all-party primary, but losing (48.0%) to Republican Susan Golding in the runoff.[21] In 1996, he ran for the 49th Congressional District as the Democratic Party nominee (41.9%), but lost to Republican Brian Bilbray (52.7%).[22] In 2001, Navarro ran in a special election to fill the District 6 San Diego city council seat, but lost in the primary.[23]

President Trump’s chief trade advisor

Director Peter Navarro addresses President Donald Trump‘s promises to American people, workers, and domestic manufacturers (Declaring American Economic Independence on 6/28/2016) in the Oval Office with Vice PresidentMike Pence and Secretary of CommerceWilbur Ross before President Trump signs Executive Orders regarding trade in March 2017[24][25]

In 2016, Navarro served as a policy adviser to Donald Trump‘s 2016 presidential campaign.[1] Navarro and the international private equity investor Wilbur Ross authored an economic plan for the Donald Trump presidential campaign in September 2016.[26] Navarro was invited to be an adviser after Jared Kushner saw on Amazon that he co-wrote Death by China, while he was researching China for Trump.[27] When told that the Tax Policy Centerassessment of Trump’s economic plan would reduce federal revenues by $6 trillion and reduce economic growth in the long term, Navarro said that the analysis demonstrated “a high degree of analytical and political malfeasance”.[28] When the Peterson Institute for International Affairs estimated that Trump’s economic plan would cost millions of American their jobs, Navarro said that writers at the Peterson Institute “weave a false narrative and they come up with some phony numbers.”[29] According to MIT economist Simon Johnson, the economic plan essay authored by Navarro and Wilbur Ross for Donald Trump during the campaign had projections “based on assumptions so unrealistic that they seem to have come from a different planet. If the United States really did adopt Trump’s plan, the result would be an immediate and unmitigated disaster.”[30] When 370 economists, including nineteen Nobel laureates, signed a letter warning against Donald Trump’s stated economic policies in November 2016, Navarro said that the letter was “an embarrassment to the corporate offshoring wing of the economist profession who continues to insist bad trade deals are good for America.”[31][32]

In October 2016, with Wilbur Ross and Andy Puzder, Navarro coauthored the essay titled “Economic Analysis of Donald Trump’s Contract with the American Voter”.[33] On December 21, 2016, Navarro was selected by President-elect Donald Trump to head a newly created position, as director of the White House National Trade Council.[34] He outlines President Trump’s trade policy as aiming to create jobs, revive the manufacturing sector, and improve the country’s trade balance. He warned that trade deficits could jeopardize U.S. national security by allowing unfriendly nations to encroach on American supply chains. One of his main missions is to focus on behaviors by other countries that he considers abusive, cheating, illegal, and unfair against the U.S.[35][36][37]

By July 2017, Politico reported that Navarro’s influence within the White House was weak.[38]Axios reported the same in November 2017.[39] By July 2017, Navarro only had two staffers, and the National Trade Council had essentially become part of the Office of Trade and Manufacturing policy.[38] By September 2017, the Office of Trade and Manufacturing policy had been folded into the National Economic Council, which meant that Navarro would have to report to NEC Director Gary Cohn.[40] However, in February 2018, several media outlets reported that Navarro’s influence in the administration was rising again and that he would likely be promoted shortly.[41][42]Josh Rogin, writing for The Washington Post, reported that Navarro had used his time of lowered influence to lead several low-profile policy items, such as working to increase military funding, drafting Executive Order 13806, and leading the effort to solve a dispute between the United States and Qatar over the Open Skies Agreement between the two countries.[43]

Opinions and assessment of trade policy

Navarro has been a staunch critic of trade with China and strong proponent of reducing U.S. trade deficits. He has attacked Germany, Japan and China for currency manipulation. He has called for increasing the size of the American manufacturing sector, setting high tariffs, and repatriating global supply chains. He was a fierce opponent of the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

According to Politico, Navarro’s economic theories are “considered fringe” by his fellow economists.[44] Al-Jazeera notes that “few other economists have endorsed Navarro’s ideas.”[45] A New Yorker reporter described Navarro’s views on trade and China as so radical “that, even with his assistance, I was unable to find another economist who fully agrees with them.”[46] The Economist described Navarro as having “oddball views”.[47] The George Mason University economist Tyler Cowen has praised him as “one of the most versatile and productive American economists of the last few decades”, but Cowen noted that he disagreed with his views on trade, which he claimed go “against a strong professional consensus.”[44] University of Michigan economist Justin Wolfers described Navarro’s views as “far outside the mainstream,” noting that “he endorses few of the key tenets of” the economics profession.[48] According to Lee Branstetter, economics professor at Carnegie Mellon and trade expert with the Peterson Institute for International Economics, Navarro “was never a part of the group of economists who ever studied the global free-trade system … He doesn’t publish in journals. What he’s writing and saying right now has nothing to do with what he got his Harvard Ph.D. in … he doesn’t do research that would meet the scientific standards of that community.”[49] Marcus Noland, an economist at the Peterson Institute for International Economics, described a tax and trade paper written by Navarro and Wilbur Ross for Trump as “a complete misunderstanding of international trade, on their part.”[28]

Border adjustment tax

Navarro supports a tax policy called “border adjustment”, which essentially taxes all imports.[49] In response to criticism that the border adjustment tax could hurt U.S. companies and put jobs at risk, Navarro called it “fake news.”[49]

Critic of China trade policy

According to Politico, “Navarro is perhaps the most extreme advocate in Washington, and maybe in all of economics, for an aggressive stance toward China.”[44] Navarro put his attention to China in the mid-2000s.[6] His first publication on the subject is the 2006 book The Coming China Wars: Where They Will Be Fought, How They Can Be Won.[50] Navarro has said that he started to examine China when he noticed that his former students were losing jobs, concluding that China was at fault.[6]

IPoliticos description of the book, “Navarro uses military language to refer to China’s trade policies, referring to its ‘conquest’ of the world’s export markets, which has ‘vaporized literally millions of manufacturing jobs and driven down wages.’ … China’s aspirations are so insatiable, he claims, that eventually there will be a clash over “our most basic of all needs—bread, water, and air.'”[50] Navarro has described the entry of China to the World Trade Organization as one of the United States’ biggest mistakes.[6] To respond to the Chinese threat, Navarro has advocated for 43% tariffs, the repudiation of trade pacts, major increases in military expenditures and strengthened military ties with Taiwan.[50][6] The New York Times notes that “a wide range of economists have warned that curtailing trade with China would damage the American economy, forcing consumers to pay higher prices for goods and services.”[51]Navarro has reportedly also encouraged President Trump to enact a 25-percent tariff on Chinese steel imports, something that “trade experts worry… would upend global trade practices and cause countries to retaliate, potentially leading to a trade war”.[52]

Navarro has said that a large part of China’s competitive advantage over the United States stems from unfair trade practices.[15] Navarro has criticized China for pollution, poor labor standards, government subsidies, producing “contaminated, defective and cancerous” exports, currency manipulation, and theft of US intellectual property.[15][45][53] In his poorly received 2012 documentary, Navarro said that China caused the loss of 57,000 US factories and 25 million jobs.[45] While Navarro maintains that China manipulates its currency, neither the U.S. Treasury nor most economists believe that it is the case.[49][6]

According to Foreign Policy, “well-regarded China analysts are almost universal in their derision of [Navarro’s] views.”[6] Of the more than dozen China specialists contacted by Foreign Policy, most either did not know of him or only interacted with him briefly.[6] Kenneth Pomeranz, University of Chicago professor of Chinese History, said that his “recollection is that [Navarro] generally avoided people who actually knew something about the country.”[6] Columnist Gordon G. Chang was the only China watcher contacted by Foreign Policywho defended Navarro, but even then noted that he disagreed with Navarro’s claims of currency manipulation, opposition to the TPP and calls for high tariffs.[6] Navarro does not appear to speak Chinese nor has he spent any time in the country.[6] James McGregor, a former chairman of the American Chamber of Commerce in China, said that Navarro’s books and documentary on China “have close to zero credibility with people who know the country,” and are filled with “hyperbole, inaccuracies” and a “cartoonish caricature of China that he puts out.”[6]

Germany

Navarro drew controversy when he accused Germany of using a “grossly undervalued” euro to “exploit” the US and its EU partners.[54]Politico noted that Germany does not set the value of the euro.[50] Economists and commentators are divided on the accuracy of Navarro’s remarks.[55][56]Paul Krugman said that Navarro was right and wrong at the same time: “Yes, Germany in effect has an undervalued currency relative to what it would have without the euro… But does this mean that the euro as a whole is undervalued against the dollar? Probably not.”[57] Boston University economist Laurence Kotlikoff described Navarro’s accusation of Germany as a currency manipulator as “#stupideconomics”.[58]

Manufacturing

Navarro argues that the decline in US manufacturing jobs is chiefly due to “unfair trade practices and bad trade deals. And if you don’t believe that, just go to the booming factories in Germany, in Japan, in Korea, in China, in Malaysia, in Vietnam, in Indonesia, in Italy—every place that we’re running deficits with.”[59] However, many economists attribute the decline in manufacturing jobs chiefly to automation and other innovations that allow manufacturing firms to produce more goods with fewer workers, rather than trade.[59][60]

Navarro has been a proponent of strengthening the manufacturing sector’s role in the national economy: “We envision a more Germany-style economy, where 20 percent of our workforce is in manufacturing. … And we’re not talking about banging tin in the back room.”[49]The New York Times notes that “experts on manufacturing … doubt that the government can significantly increase factory employment, noting that mechanization is the major reason fewer people are working in factories.”[51]

Opposition to NAFTA

Navarro has called for the United States to leave NAFTA.[52]Politico reported that Navarro tried to convince President Trump of leaving NAFTA.[52]

Repatriation of global supply chains

Navarro has called for repatriating global supply chains.[50][53] According to Politico’s Jacob Heilbrunn, such a move “would be enormously costly and take years to execute”.[50]

Trade as a national security risk

Navarro has framed trade as a national security risk.[50][61][62] According to Politico, “he’s a hard-line mercantilist who insists that military confrontation with some trading partners is almost inevitable.”[50]

Navarro has characterized foreign purchases of U.S. companies as a threat to national security, but according to NPR, this is “a fringe view that puts him at odds with the vast majority of economists.”[63] Dartmouth economist Douglas Irwin noted that the US government already reviews foreign purchases of companies with military or strategic value, and has on occasion rejected such deals.[63] Irwin said that Navarro had not substantiated his claim with any evidence.[63]

Navarro has also said that the United States has “already begun to lose control of [its] food supply chain”, which according to NPR, “sounded pretty off-the-wall to a number of economists” who noted that the US is a massive exporter of food.[63] Dermot Hayes, an agribusiness economist at Iowa State University, described Navarro’s statement as “uninformed”.[63]

Trade deficits

Navarro is a proponent of the notion that trade deficits are bad in and of themselves, a view which is widely rejected by trade experts and economists across the political spectrum.[64][65][66][67][68][69][70][71][72][73][2][excessive citations] In a white paper co-authored with Wilbur Ross, Navarro stated, “when a country runs a trade deficit by importing more than it exports, this subtracts from growth.”[69][74] In a Wall Street Journal op-ed defending his views, Navarro stated, “If we are able to reduce our trade deficits through tough, smart negotiations, we should be able to increase our growth.”[75] Harvard University economics professor Gregory Mankiw has said that Navarro’s views on the trade deficit are based on the kind of mistakes that “even a freshman at the end of ec 10 knows.”[76][77] Tufts University professor Daniel W. Drezner said about Navarro’s op-ed, “as someone who’s written on this topic I could not for the life of me understand his reasoning”.[61] According to Tyler Cowen, “close to no one” in the economics profession agrees with Navarro’s idea that a trade deficit is bad in and of itself.[68] Nobel laureate Angus Deaton described Navarro’s attitude on trade deficits as “an old-fashioned mercantilist position.”[73]

The Economist magazine has described Navarro’s views on the trade deficit as “dodgy economics” and “fantasy”,[15] while the Financial Times has described them as “poor economics”.[78] Economists Noah Smith,[79]Scott Sumner,[80][81]Olivier Blanchard,[53] and Phil Levy[82] have also criticized Navarro’s views on the trade deficit.

Opposition to Trans-Pacific Partnership

Navarro opposes the Trans-Pacific Partnership.[83] In an April 2015 op-ed, Navarro said, “To woo us, their spinmeisters boast the TPP will spur American exports to stimulate sorely needed economic growth. In truth, the American economy will suffer severely. This is because the TPP will hammer two main drivers of economic growth – domestic investment and ‘net exports.'”[83] Navarro said in March 2017 that TPP “would have been a “death knell” to America’s auto and vehicle parts industry that we “urgently need to bring back to full life.”[53]Politico‘s Jacob Heilbrunn and theEconomist argue that there may be a disconnect between Navarro’s policy on China and his opposition to the TPP, as scuttling the TPP will strengthen China’s hand.[50][15]

Personal life

Navarro is married to architect Leslie Lebon.[84] They live in Laguna Beach, California.[85]

Bibliography

References

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_Navarro

Story 2: New Cold War and Arms Race Between United States and Russia — Targeting Trump in Florida — Videos

See the source image

See the source image

Putin touts nuclear-powered, intercontinental cruise missile

Russia unveils ‘invincible’ nuclear missile

Why Putin is unveiling ‘invincible’ nuclear weapons now

Target in Putin’s nuke video looks like Florida

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First President Trump, Now Vladimir Putin Brags About His Arsenal Size | The Last Word | MSNBC

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The Map That Shows Why Russia Fears War With USA – Mike Maloney

How Russia’s ‘invincible’ new weapons work

  • 05/03/2018
  • Dan Satherley

Vladimir Putin reveals the new weapons. Credits: APTN

Vladimir Putin’s claim Russia now has “invincible” weapons that can strike anywhere in the world is probably true, experts say.

On Friday (NZ time), the Russian President said Moscow’s new weapons could strike anywhere in the world, and evade missile defence shields.

“They need to take account of a new reality and understand that everything I have said today is not a bluff.”

But how? Missile defence expert Laura Grego explained to Livescience’s Rafi Letzterthat Russia’s new nuclear arsenal is largely not of the ballistic missile variety.

“Ballistic missiles, true to the name, go on a ballistic trajectory,” she told the site on Monday (NZ time). “They use these powerful engines to get themselves moving really fast, but after the engines burn out they’re just coasting.”

It’s not hard to figure out where a ballistic missile is going to land, she explains, so it’s not hard to shoot them out of the sky.

Russia’s new weapons evade defences in three ways. The first is by attaching nuclear warheads to cruise missiles, which don’t coast to their destination high up in the air – they fly close to the ground, out of radar’s sight.

“In theory, a cruise missile carrying a nuclear bomb could slip under American defenses and detection systems, and detonate before Americans could mobilise a response,” wrote Mr Letzter.

And being nuclear-powered, the missiles in theory have enough power to travel across the world.

Russian S-400 missile air defence systems in a military parade to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the battle of Stalingrad.
Russian S-400 missile air defence systems in a military parade to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the battle of Stalingrad. Photo credit: Reuters

The second method is a new nuclear torpedo, difficult to detect before it detonates on the coast.

“A missile that can deploy multiple warheads, all of which enter the atmosphere at hypersonic speeds – up to 20 times the speed of sound – and could perform evasive manoeuvres in flight before striking their targets,” writes Mr Letzter.

Multiple warheads bear down on Florida in an animation.
Multiple warheads bear down on Florida in an animation. Photo credit: Russia/APTN

Dr Grego said the escalation in missile technology is a partly a result of the US abandoning the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty in 2001 – part of which disallowed states from building missile defence shields for this very reason.

“By building a defence, rather than discourage your adversary, your adversary is likely to just build more so that they can get up and over your defence. And then you build more defence. So it’s an arms race cycle.”

Former adviser to US Presidents and nuclear weapons expert Philip Coyle told Livescience much the same thing.

“In 2004, Putin himself warned the United States that if we kept going the way we were going, this is what he was going to do. And he did it.”

Mr Putin’s US counterpart, Donald Trump, has called for the US to build more nuclear weapons.

In January, a group of scientists said the world was inching closer to ‘Doomsday’ thanks to North Korea’s nuclear programme and Mr Trump’s aggressive rhetoric.

Newshub.

http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/world/2018/03/how-russia-s-invincible-new-weapons-work.html

 

 

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The Pronk Pops Show 1005, Story 1: The Fed’s Great Unwind or Rolling Over Into 21st Century Greatest Depression — Videos — Story 2: Will President Trump Be The Next President Hoover? — Videos

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Pronk Pops Show 1005, November 22, 2017

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Pronk Pops Show 1001, November 14, 2017 

Pronk Pops Show 1000, November 13, 2017

Pronk Pops Show 999, November 10, 2017

Pronk Pops Show 998, November 9, 2017

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Pronk Pops Show 996, November 6, 2017

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 Story 1: The Fed’s Great Unwind or Rolling Over Into 21st Century Greatest Depression — Videos

U.S. Debt Clock

http://www.usdebtclock.org/

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What’s the Truth About the First Thanksgiving?

Ben Shapiro: The Truth About Thanksgiving

Monetary and Fiscal Policy: Crash Course Government and Politics #48

Fiscal Policy and Stimulus: Crash Course Economics #8

What’s all the Yellen About? Monetary Policy and the Federal Reserve: Crash Course Economics #10

Recession, Hyperinflation, and Stagflation: Crash Course Econ #13

Yellen resigns as Fed chair

Who Is Janet Yellen? In Two and a Half Minutes

BREAKING NEWS]Yellen, denied second term as fed chair, announces resignation

[BREAKING NEWS]Yellen, denied second term as fed chair, announces resignation Federal Reserve chief Janet Yellen said Monday she will leave the central bank once her term as chair ends in February, wrapping up a pivotal tenure in which the Fed began to reverse its extraordinary, decadelong…

Fed expected to wind down $4.2 trillion balance sheet

How the Constitution Has Been Twisted to Undermine the Free Market | Judge Andrew P. Napolitano

The Most Persistent Economic Fallacy of All Time!

Mark Thornton: Can the Fed Unwind?

Fake Economic News | Walter Block

Who Bears the Burden of Government Debt? | Robert P. Murphy

Milton Friedman: Why soaking the rich won’t work.

Milton Friedman proves why welfare can’t work

Milton Friedman: The Rise of Socialism is Absurd

The Great Unwind: What Happens to the Markets When the Economy Stumbles Again

Published on Jul 21, 2015

Stock market returns and economic forecasts are being distorted by a few big myths that are likely to be proven wrong in the near future. It is widely believed that the American economy has fully recovered and has reached escape velocity where it will be able to sustain momentum without stimulus. This belief has led the majority of forecasters to conclude that the Federal Reserve will begin raising rates this year and will continue hiking through the end of 2016. At the same time they believe that foreign central banks will fight slowing growth abroad with unlimited U.S. style quantitative easing, thereby pushing the U.S. dollar to new heights, and gold and oil to new lows. Their conclusion: U.S. stock markets will continue to lead the world. But what if these assumptions are dead wrong? What if the signs of growth were really just the direct result of Fed stimulus, which will disappear if the Fed raises rates? Recent economic data has been so dismal that savvy economists are drawing parallels with 2008, the year of the last crash. What if it’s not just the weather? If the Fed shocks the markets by keeping rates at zero for far longer than expected, the markets will unwind trades based on these false assumptions. This is where Peter Schiff and Euro Pacific Capital have ideas that you need to hear. Peter Schiff is a world renown investor and author who has made his reputation by seeing things that few other analysts can. He sees huge problems ahead for the U.S. economy and potentially a reversal of the U.S. dollar rally of the past year. He will discuss the inability for the Fed to dispose of its gargantuan $4 trillion balance sheet without sparking a financial collapse. He will also discuss opportunities in foreign, non-dollar, and precious metals investing. Ignore his advice at your own peril.

How Will the Fed Reduce Its Balance Sheet?

Whiteboard Economics: The Fed’s Balance Sheet Unwind

Rothbard on Mises & Friedman at Mont Pèlerin

Ayn Rand meets Ludwig von Mises – Milton Friedman

Rothbard on Ayn Rand

Milton Friedman on Money / Monetary Policy (Federal Reserve) Part 1

Milton Friedman on Money / Monetary Policy (Federal Reserve) Part 2

Milton Friedman – Monetary Revolutions

Milton Friedman – Is tax reform possible?

Milton Friedman – The role of government in a free society

 

Fed officials fear financial market ‘imbalances’ and possibility of ‘sharp reversal’ in prices

  • Minutes from the Oct. 31-Nov. 1 Federal Open Market Committee meeting indicate some worry about rising financial markets.
  • The meeting minutes also included a discussion about possibly changing the central bank’s approach to addressing inflation.

Janet Yellen, chair of the U.S. Federal Reserve.

Fed: Rate increase likely warrented soon

Federal Reserve officials expressed largely optimistic views of economic growth at their most recent meeting but also started to worry that financial market prices are getting out of hand and posing a danger to the economy.

Minutes from the Oct. 31-Nov. 1 Federal Open Market Committee meeting indicate members with almost universally positive views on growth — the labor market, consumer spending and manufacturing all were showing solid gains. While there were disagreements on the pace of inflation, and even a discussion about changing the Fed’s approach to price stability, the sentiment otherwise was largely positive.

Moreover, they said the picture could get even better if Congress lowers corporate taxes as part of the reform plan making its way through the Senate.

“In their discussion of the economic situation and the outlook, meeting participants agreed that information received since the FOMC met in September indicated that the labor market had continued to strengthen and that economic activity had been rising at a solid rate despite hurricane-related disruptions,” the minutes stated.

However, when it came to evaluating market conditions, the talk took a more cautious tone.

Stocks have been on a tear throughout 2017, setting a series of record highs and adding trillions in value. That’s come both on the heels of stronger corporate earnings and hopes that the tax reform plan, which would take the corporate rate from 35 percent to 20 percent, becomes a reality.

Some members feared what would happen if the market suddenly took a hit.

“In light of elevated asset valuations and low financial market volatility, several participants expressed concerns about a potential buildup of financial imbalances,” the minutes said. “They worried that a sharp reversal in asset prices could have damaging effects on the economy.”

Concerns about the surge in stocks are not new at the Fed, but most officials have downplayed the idea that the market is in a bubble. Wall Street also has been at odds about the market, with Bank of America Merrill Lynch warning of a market top coming in 2018 though Goldman Sachs has predicted another big year.

Some members said the bull market was justified by a continued low “neutral” rate of interest that is neither overly restrictive nor accommodative to growth.

And there also was mention of “regulatory changes” that had helped “an appreciable strengthening of capital and liquidity positions in the financial sector over recent years,” which made the system less prone to shocks or sudden market drops.

President Donald Trump has taken a three-pronged approach to economic growth and frequently boasts of the stock market gains. In addition to tax reform, he has cut business regulations and is expected in the coming months to unveil a plan to boost infrastructure spending.

During the year, economic growth has increased, with GDP gaining 3.1 percent and 3 percent the past two quarters and on track to be around the same level in the fourth quarter.

FOMC members noted multiple areas of positive developments. The labor market is “operating at or above full employment,” GDP is likely to “grow at a pace exceeding that of potential output,” and even inflation has been slowed only by “temporary or idiosyncratic factors.”

But on inflation, the consensus was weaker, with some members disagreeing with the notion that all the softness was due to issues that would fade.

Other members, though, thought the Fed could be in danger of waiting too long for inflation to rise and could risk further instability in the financial markets. Several members said the upcoming data would be critical in determining whether they felt the Fed was close to meeting its 2 percent inflation goal.

A “couple” members even suggested the Fed tweak its approach to inflation, moving away from the 2 percent goal and toward a more nebulous “gradually rising path” in prices instead.

As a matter of policy, the committee chose not to hike rates at the meeting, as expected, but members indicated that gradual rate hikes are likely in the future. Markets are assigning a nearly 100 percent probability to a December rate hike, though only factoring in one or two so far for 2018.

Also at the meeting, members discussed the well-publicized reduction of the Fed’s $4.5 trillion balance sheet. Under the plan, the central bank is letting a capped level of proceeds from the bonds it owns run off each month. Fed officials agreed the program thus far has run smoothly.

https://www.cnbc.com/2017/11/22/fomc-minutes–fed-officials-fear-market-imbalances-possible-effects-of-sharp-reversal-in-prices.html

It’s begun: Fed’s unwinding of its epic balance sheet officially showing up in the data

  • Thursday’s Federal Reserve report on its portfolio holdings shows a near $6 billion decline in its holdings of Treasury securities.
  • That’s the biggest outright weekly decline since 2012.

Federal Reserve Board Chairwoman Janet Yellen testifies before the Joint Economic Committee on Capitol Hill November 17, 2016 in Washington, DC.

Win McNamee | Getty Images
Federal Reserve Board Chairwoman Janet Yellen testifies before the Joint Economic Committee on Capitol Hill November 17, 2016 in Washington, DC.

The Fed’s campaign to reduce its $4.4 trillion balance sheet is now taking effect and showing up in the data.

Thursday’s Federal Reserve report on its portfolio holdings shows a near $6 billion decline in its holdings of Treasury securities. It’s the biggest outright weekly decline since 2012.

It’s just the leading edge of more to come as the Fed gradually ramps up its effort to “normalize” its balance sheet. The Fed hasn’t explicitly said what level it’s aiming for, only that it will ramp up its sales of Treasurys and mortgage-backed securities to a point where it eventually is reducing them at a clip of $50 billion a month.

The decline in mortgage-backed securities, which is already taking place, should begin showing up in the data next month.

https://www.cnbc.com/2017/11/03/its-begun-feds-unwinding-of-its-epic-balance-sheet-officially-showing-up-in-the-data.html

 

Story 2: Will President Trump Be The Next President Hoover? — Videos

Reagan Budget Director Stockman Thrashes GOP Tax Bill as ‘Ideological Imposter’ of ‘81 Bill

The Deep State and the Donald | David Stockman

The Curse of Economic Nationalism | Thomas J. DiLorenzo

Steve Banon “Economic Nationalism Is What Binds Us Together!”

Steve Bannon: What Built America Was Economic Nationalism (60 Minutes Interview)

Myth-Busters: The Truth About Hoover & FDR

Milton Friedman on the Great Depression, Bank Runs & the Federal Reserve

Milton Friedman Explains the Cause of the Great Depression

Did FDR End the Great Depression?

The Legacy of the Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act

The Hawley-Smoot Tariff in Under 5 Minutes – Hasty History

The Smoot Hawley Tariff Act

Hoover and the Great Depression

Hoover and Roosevelt

The 1928 Election Explained

Coolidge: The Best President You Don’t Know

Rothbard on the ‘best’ US president

The Current State of World Affairs | Murray N. Rothbard

Murray Rothbard Where Did The Free Markets Go?

Murray N. Rothbard on Milton Friedman pre1971

Murray Rothbard: The Truth About Taxes

What I Learned from Murray Rothbard | Thomas E. Woods, Jr.

Bank of America sees end of bull market coming in 2018: Here’s how it will happen

  • Bank of America Merrill Lynch predicts “capitulation” for the bull market in 2018, with the S&P 500 peaking at 2,863.
  • Strategist Michael Hartnett said the firm is prepared to “downgrade risk aggressively” once it sees the triggers in place.
  • A shift from passive to active in investor allocations would be one of the signs that the rally is about over.

A pedestrian passes in front of a statue of a bull in the Wall Street area in New York City.

Doug Kantor | AFP | Getty Images

A pedestrian passes in front of a statue of a bull in the Wall Street area in New York City.

Bank of America Merrill Lynch sees a scary good news-bad news scenario unfolding in 2018: A solid push higher in the first half followed by all sorts of potential trouble after.

The S&P 500 would peak out around 2,863 in the scenario, or about 11 percent higher than Monday’s close. Bond yields are expected to rise, with the benchmark 10-year Treasury note hitting 2.75 percent as global GDP growth reaches 3.8 percent.

That setting assumes three things: the “last vestiges” of stimulus from the Fed and other central banks, the passage of tax reform in Congress, and “full investor capitulation into risk assets” on better-than-expected corporate earnings.

After that, though, things get considerably sketchier as the second-longest bull market in history runs into trouble.

Real battle for leadership in this market: State Street's Michael Arone

Real battle for leadership in this market: State Street’s Michael Arone  

“We believe the air in risk assets is getting thinner and thinner, but the Big Top in price is still ahead of us,” Michael Hartnett, chief investment strategist at BofAML, said in a report for clients. “We will downgrade risk aggressively once we see excess positioning, profits and policy.”

Indicators that market positioning has gotten out of hand and signaling a fall would include active funds attracting more money than passive (there’s a $476 billion gap this year in favor of passive), and portfolio allocation for equities exceeding 63 percent, a level currently at 61 percent.

Hartnett pointed out that the current bull will be the longest in history if it continues to Aug. 22, 2018, while the outperformance of stocks versus bonds, at seven years running, would be the longest streak since 1929.

The forecast is predicated on three core beliefs: The first is the aforementioned capitulation; the second an expectation of “peak positioning, profits and policy” that “will engender peak asset price returns” and a low in volatility; and, finally, an expectation that higher inflation and corporate debt along with tighter monetary policy will roil the corporate bond market, a critical prong of the risk asset rally.

“The game changer is wage inflation, which on our forecasts is likely to become more visible,” said Hartnett, who projects that salaries could rise 3.5 percent and push the consumer price index up 2.5 percent and convince the Fed that it’s close to meeting its 2 percent inflation goal.

However, that cuts both ways: Should wage inflation again fail to materialize, Hartnett said “the era of excess liquidity” continues, bond yields would fall and the Nasdaq tech barometer would go “exponential.” That would signal a bubble that might not end until 2019, when a bear market would be triggered by “hostile Fed hiking, Occupy Silicon Valley and War on Inequality politics.”

“Big Top” trades favor technology, homebuilders, Japanese banks and the dollar against the Swiss franc.

BofAML’s forecast comes as Goldman Sachs released a price target of 2,850 for the S&P 500, after a comparatively bearish 2016 call for 2,400 that was passed six months ago.

https://www.cnbc.com/2017/11/21/bank-of-america-bull-market-ending-in-2018-how-it-will-happen.html

Will Donald Trump be Herbert Hoover all over again?


President-elect Donald Trump. (Mike Segar/Reuters)
 Opinion writer November 11, 2016

As a Donald Trump victory became clear Tuesday night, the ghost of Herbert Hoover paid a visit to Trump’s election night party in New York.

In the Fox News coverage playing on screens in the ballroom, Megyn Kelly turned to Karl Rove. “It didn’t happen under Reagan or the Bushes. When was the last time a Republican president had a Republican Congress?”

“1928,” Rove answered.

“Incredible,” Kelly said.

Yes, quite: Republicans actually had unified control for four years under George W. Bush, and for two years under Dwight Eisenhower, as Rove amended when I followed up with him.

Expecting a celebration, The Washington Post’s Dana Milbank wrote a letter to his daughter to help her cope with Hillary Clinton’s electoral loss.

But the 1928 comparison is instructive. It’s the last time a Republican president enjoyed anything like the majority Trump will have, particularly in the House.

And how did that work out for them?

Hoover took over in a time of general prosperity but stagnant wages and vast income inequality. Populists in Congress proposed dramatic increases in tariffs to help the struggling agricultural sector, the equivalent of today’s beleaguered blue-collar workers.

The proposal divided Republicans in Congress and Hoover before they produced the 1930 Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act, setting off retaliation, freezing international trade, contributing to the Great Depression and accelerating a ruinous cycle of nationalism around the world.

Hoover’s ghost should haunt the GOP right now. A populist, protectionist president has come to power at a time of long-depressed wages and vast inequality. He threatens to implement tariffs of 45 percent against China and 35 percent against Mexico, and he’s about to collide with free-traders and pro-business interests in his own party.

If they jettison Trump’s agenda and proceed with business as usual, they risk inflaming Trump’s already-furious followers. If they do what Trump has promised, there will be chaos as they pursue what amounts to a mission impossible: enacting a huge tax cut, making enormous spending increases on infrastructure and the military and cutting the debt in half — all without touching Social Security and Medicare.

And they’ll be without a mutual foil to unite them. President Obama will be out of office, Hillary Clinton defeated, Harry Reid retired. With unified control, Republicans now own every issue — health care, the economy, national security — and Democrats, who narrowly won the popular vote and are supported by exit polls showing tepid support for many of Trump’s policy priorities, have little incentive to cooperate.

 Some early signs show Trump won’t hesitate to disappoint supporters, including his statement Friday that, after talking with Obama, he no longer favors repealing all of Obamacare.

Drain the swamp? Trump has packed his transition team with a who’s who of the K Street lobbying trade, according to Politico. Among those in charge of staffing the new administration are people who have lobbied for or represented Altria, Visa, Anthem, Coca-Cola, General Electric, HSBC, Pfizer, PhRMA, United Airlines, Southern Company, Dow Chemical, Rosemont Copper Company, Boeing, Duke Energy and Nucor.

My colleague Catherine Ho reports that Trump’s win “is likely to be a boon to the lobbying business,” as businesses try to counteract the uncertainty with more lobbyists.

The Trump-proposed ban on Muslims entering the country? As The Post’s Jose A. DelReal reported, the Trump campaign removed that policy’s web page Thursday, then restored it after the reporter’s inquiries.

That wall on the Mexican border? “Going to take a while,” Trump lieutenant Rudy Giuliani said Thursday, suggesting “he can do it by executive order by just reprogramming money within the immigration service.”

“Reprogramming” money away from . . . deportation? Truly building the wall would cost hundreds of billions of dollars and require approval from Congress.

The “lock her up” crowd may also be disappointed. Chris Christie said “politics are over now.”

On that same question, however, Giuliani said prosecuting Clinton would be “a presidential decision” — an extraordinary departure from the American tradition of removing the president from prosecutorial decisions, particularly since President Nixon tried to block the Justice Department’s Watergate probe in 1973.

The Trump transition sounded another Nixonian note when Trump surrogate Omarosa Manigault told a conservative website that Trump is keeping an enemies list.

The conflicting signals suggest Trump himself hasn’t settled on his course. His gracious victory speech was about reaching out to the opposition, but Breitbart News, whose once and future leader ran the campaign, has been whipping up racial fears (“Shock Video Shows White Man Viciously Beaten in Chicago After Election”).

On Thursday night, the president-elect tweeted that “professional protesters, incited by the media, are protesting. Very unfair!” Friday morning he reconsidered: “Love the fact that the small groups of protesters last night have passion for our great country. We will all come together and be proud!”

Trump’s internal tension is understandable. He can leave supporters disillusioned, or he can keep his promises — and send us all back to 1928.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/will-donald-trump-be-herbert-hoover-all-over-again/2016/11/11/8e533600-a820-11e6-8042-f4d111c862d1_story.html?utm_term=.15c6a091b1f6

Jamie Dimon says he would bet on Trump being a one-term president

  • The JPMorgan CEO said he’d bet on Trump being a one-term president.
  • That said, he thinks a “pro-free enterprise” agenda for jobs and economic growth.
  • Dimon has described himself as “barely” a Democrat, but has been more active on range of business and economic issues.

Jamie Dimon speaking at the 2017 Delivering Alpha conference in New York on Sept. 12, 2017.

David A. Grogan | CNBC
Jamie Dimon speaking at the 2017 Delivering Alpha conference in New York on Sept. 12, 2017.

Jamie Dimon, CEO of JPMorgan Chase, on Wednesday said he expects to see a new U.S. president in 2021 and advised Democrats to come up with a “pro-free enterprise” agenda for jobs and economic growth.

Asked at a luncheon hosted by The Economic Club of Chicago how many years President Donald Trump will be in office, Dimon said, “If I had to bet, I’d bet three and half. But the Democrats have to come up with a reasonable candidate … or Trump will win again” and have second four-year term.

Dimon, who in the past has described himself as “barely” a Democrat, has been going to Washington more often since the November 2016 election of Trump to lobby lawmakers on range of business and economic issues, including changes in corporate taxes, immigration policies and mortgage finance.

Jamie Dimon: There's a huge vaccuum if business isn't involved in policy

Jamie Dimon: There’s a huge vacuum if business isn’t involved in policy  

In December, Dimon became chairman of the Business Roundtable, an association of CEOs who take their views to government policy makers.

Dimon, 61, touched briefly on range of topics, from Americas political climate and tax system to discrimination in the workplace and against black people.

He also commented on foreign affairs, saying, for example, “We should never be rude to a neighbor like Mexico.”

He also cautioned that the political weakness of German Chancellor Angela Merkel is bad for all of us. Talks on forming a governing coalition including Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union collapsed earlier this week, casting doubt on her future after 12 years in power.

Dimon is in his 12th year as CEO of JPMorgan, which is the biggest bank in the U.S. by assets

https://www.cnbc.com/2017/11/22/jamie-dimon-says-he-would-bet-on-trump-being-a-one-term-president.html

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The Pronk Pops Show 1002, November 15, 2017, Story 1: More on Moore: Roy Moore’s Attorney News Briefing — She Said Vs. He Said — Faulty Memory of Witnesses Leading To Wrongful Conviction — Sexual Abuse — Who Do You Believe? — The Voters of Alabama Must Answer This Question on December 12 — Videos — Story 2: Will The Senate Pass A Tax Reform Bill?– NO — Tax Cut Bill — Yes — Videos — Story 3: Who is on the Congressional CREEP List of Sexual Harassers in Congress and Their Staffs ? — Who is next to be outed? — Shout Animal House — Intimacy — Getting To Know You– Dance With Me –Videos 

Posted on November 16, 2017. Filed under: American History, Art, Art, Assault, Bill Clinton, Blogroll, Breaking News, Budgetary Policy, Business, Cartoons, Communications, Congress, Constitutional Law, Corruption, Countries, Crime, Culture, Donald J. Trump, Donald J. Trump, Donald J. Trump, Donald Trump, Donald Trump, Economics, Education, Elections, Empires, Employment, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, Freedom of Speech, Government, Government Spending, Hate Speech, Health, Hillary Clinton, Hillary Clinton, History, House of Representatives, Human, James Comey, Law, Life, Media, Movies, Music, National Interest, Networking, News, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Polls, Progressives, Public Corruption, Radio, Raymond Thomas Pronk, Resources, Robert S. Mueller III, Rule of Law, Scandals, Security, Senate, Sexual Harrasment, Social Networking, Success, Tax Policy, Taxation, Taxes, Terror, Terrorism, Unemployment, United States of America, Videos, Violence, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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Story 1: More on Moore: Roy Moore’s Attorney News Briefing — She Said Vs. He Said — Faulty Memory of Witnesses Leading To Wrongful Conviction — Sexual Abuse — Who Do You Believe? — The Voters of Alabama Must Answer This Question on December 12 — Videos —

Roy Moore & Jeff Sessions Cold Open – SNL

RUSH: Roy Moore Accuser Claims She Was Locked In Car In 1977; Child Locks Not Required Till 1980s

WATCH: Roy Moore’s attorney holds news briefing

Streamed live on Nov 15, 2017
The attorney for Roy Moore, the candidate for the Alabama seat vacated by now-Attorney General Jeff Sessions, holds a press conference following multiple allegations of sexual harassment and assault against Moore.

Alabama seniors say Roy Moore’s alleged actions were normal back then (HBO)

Mark Levin: People of Alabama should decide if they believe the accusations against Roy Moore

Ben Shapiro: Roy Moore needs to go

What Pisses Me Off About Roy Moore and Stupid F&%king Republicans

Judge Roy Moore Sexual Misconduct Allegations | True News

On The Sean Hannity Show, Newt Gingrich says a “lynch mob” is after Roy Moore

Live Stream: #Pedowood Predators, Pervs, Pedophiles and Pederasts Are Tolerated But Trump’s Reviled

How reliable is your memory? | Elizabeth Loftus

TED

Published on Sep 23, 2013

Psychologist Elizabeth Loftus studies memories. More precisely, she studies false memories, when people either remember things that didn’t happen or remember them differently from the way they really were. It’s more common than you might think, and Loftus shares some startling stories and statistics, and raises some important ethical questions we should all remember to consider. TEDTalks is a daily video podcast of the best talks and performances from the TED Conference, where the world’s leading thinkers and doers give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes (or less). Look for talks on Technology, Entertainment and Design — plus science, business, global issues, the arts and much more.

Mother Of Roy Moore Accuser Spills The HOAX By Accident! – Several Facts Turned Out To Be FAKED

WaPo REPORTER Beth SECRETLY RECORDED OFFERING WOMAN $1000 TO ACCUSE ROY MOORE

Mark Levin REVEALS The Truth About Judge Roy Moore Allegations! You Will Cheer!

As McCain Leads The Charge Against Moore, LOOK What SICKENING Secret From His Past EXPOSED

Mitch McConnell Handling Of Past Sex Scandal A Warning For Roy Moore | Rachel Maddow | MSNBC

USA: SENATOR BOB PACKWOOD SCANDAL UPDATE

Bob Packwood Resigns from Senate

Woman Explains Why She Falsely Accused Her Dad Of Sexual Assault As A Child

Dr. Drew: Child abuse at the core of virtually all societies’ problems

Dr. Drew on staggering impact of sexual abuse

Tom Arnold talks about his childhood of abuse

CNN: CNN anchor Don Lemon talks coming out, abuse

Candace Conti: Former Jehovah’s Witness Takes on Church over Sex Abuse Allegations

What happens to a child after he/she suffers sexual abuse?

Roy Moore maintains lead in another new Senate poll

Roy Moore, left, and Doug Jones. (AL.com file photos)
Roy Moore, left, and Doug Jones. (AL.com file photos)
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Fox 10/Strategy Research poll released Tuesday night showed Moore with a six-point lead over Democrat Doug Jones.

The poll, according to Fox 10, sampled 3,000 likely voters on Monday with Moore getting 49 percent of the vote, Jones 43 percent and 8 percent undecided. The poll has a margin of error of 2 percent.

Even with that edge, the poll indicated Moore has lost almost half of his support. A Fox 10 poll two weeks ago showed Moore with an 11-point lead. Moore’s support among Republicans also dropped 8 percent.

The poll also said that 11 percent of participants said they were less likely to vote for Moore because of the allegations made against him while 35 percent said it made them more likely to vote for him.

The allegations also did not alter the thinking of a majority of the undecided voters. Of those who have not made up their mind, 51 percent said that the allegations would not be a deciding factor while 44 percent said it made them less likely to vote for Moore.

An Emerson College poll, released Monday, had Moore with a 10-point lead. Five other polls conducted since the allegations were publishedlast week either had Jones winning or within the margin of error.

One other poll, conducted by an official from earlier Moore campaigns and presented exclusively to Moore-favoring Breitbart News, had the former Alabama chief justice leading by 11 points.

http://www.al.com/news/index.ssf/2017/11/roy_moore_maintains_lead_in_an.html

Women supporting Roy Moore not concerned whether he dated teens

Dean Young and other Roy Moore supporters appear at a press conference in Montgomery on Nov. 16, 2017. (Mike Cason/mcason@al.com)

Two women who joined longtime Roy Moore ally Dean Young at a press conference today said they aren’t concerned whether Moore sought dates with teenage girls when he was a county prosecutor in his early 30s, some four decades ago.

Moore has strongly denied the two most serious allegations against him – a sexual encounter with a 14-year-old and an assault on a 16-year-old.

But Moore did not clearly deny dating teenage girls when he was in his early 30s in an interview on Sean Hannity’s Fox News program. Moore did, in an open letter to Hannity, say that he did not date “underage” girls.

AL.com and the Washington Post have published stories about women who said Moore dated them or asked them on dates when they were ages 16-18 and he was in his 30s.

Click here for AL.com’s coverage of Roy Moore.

Kay Day, 69, of Theodore, who joined Young at today’s news conference, said that doesn’t necessarily bother her and won’t affect her support for Moore, who faces Democratic nominee Doug Jones in the Dec. 12 in the U.S. Senate election.

Day said she was 18 when she began dating her husband, who was 32 at the time. They got married in 1963.

“My mother married at 15 and married a man 14 years older than her,” Day said. “In that day, if you married someone that was 15 years older, it was common.”

“Even if it were so, that would not make me not vote for Judge Moore. That is just not something that would make me discredit and ruin a man for the rest of his life.”

Day, who grew up in Tennessee, said she began following Moore’s career during his legal battles over displays of the Ten Commandments.

“And I continue to follow him and have for 20 years, and devastated by what they would say about Judge Moore because I’ve known him for so long and been with him,” Day said. “Gentleman. Never heard anything come out of his mouth that would even give me an inkling. Never crossed my mind. Perfect gentleman.”

Dee Owens, 75, who came to Montgomery from Mobile today to join Young for the press conference, said she would not be bothered to learn that Moore dated teenage girls in his early 30s.

“Not in the least because that’s all right with me,” Owens said. “When I was young I dated a gentleman that was 22 years older than me and my parents didn’t have a problem with it. And mothers back then actually wanted their daughters to marry men that were older. They felt they would be taken care of.”

“I believe like he does,” Owens said. “And like the Ten Commandments, he stood up. He will stand for what’s right. Not like the RINOs we have in Washington. And definitely I’ll vote for him. And everybody I know, all my friends are voting for him.”

Young, who ran for a Congress last year and in 2013, is a regular presence at Moore rallies and press conferences and has known Moore since the early 1990s.

Moore said the campaign is working to debunk allegations against the candidate and will prevail against what he called the fake news media, elitist Republican establishment in Washington and the Democrats.

“Now they have all this endless parade of people who have never said anything for 40 years say that a man that you, Alabamians have watched for 25 years,” Young said. “You’ve watched him stand for what’s right, for what’s good and what’s just and what’s fair.”

Young aimed much of his criticism at Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, who backed Sen. Luther Strange in his primary loss to Moore and has said he believes Moore’s accusers and that Moore should get out of the race.

Young also criticized attorney Gloria Allred, who represents Beverly Young Nelson, 56, who accused Moore of assaulting her in his car outside the Gadsden restaurant where she worked when she was 16. Moore has strongly denied the allegation.

Moore’s attorney, Phillip Jauregui, has challenged Allred to submit Nelson’s high school yearbook for examination by handwriting analysts. Nelson claims Moore signed the yearbook.

Allred said they would only allow the yearbook to be examined if the Senate Judiciary Committee or Select Committee on Ethics conducts a hearing on Nelson’s allegation. She said Nelson is willing to give testimony under oath and Moore should do the same.

Young pointed out that Allred declined to answer directly when asked by Wolf Blitzer on CNN if the yearbook signature was a forgery.

“Is this a real signature?” Young said. “She won’t even answer that question.”

Owens said efforts by the national Republican establishment to derail Moore’s campaign in Alabama have made her more determined than ever to support him.

“I would like to go to Washington with a big stick,” Owens said.

http://www.al.com/news/index.ssf/2017/11/women_supporting_roy_moore_not.html

The Neuroscience of Memory: Implications for the Courtroom

Joyce W. Lacy#1 and Craig E. L. Stark#2

Abstract

Although memory can be hazy at times, it is often assumed that memories of violent or otherwise stressful events are so well-encoded that they are largely indelible and that confidently retrieved memories are likely to be accurate. However, findings from basic psychological research and neuroscience studies indicate that memory is a reconstructive process that is susceptible to distortion. In the courtroom, even minor memory distortions can have severe consequences that are in part driven by common misunderstandings about memory, e.g. expecting memory to be more veridical than it may actually be.

Introduction

Pioneers in neuroscience such as Ramón y Cajal, Hebb, and Marr introduced the idea that memory is encoded in the patterns of synaptic connectivity between neurons. Increases in the strengths of these synapses encode our experiences and thereby shape our future behavior. Our understanding of the complex mechanisms that underlie learning and memory has progressed dramatically in recent decades, and studies have not provided evidence that memories are indelible. Quite the contrary, it is becoming clear that there are several ways through which memories can change.

The ‘imperfection’ of memory has been known since the first empirical memory experiments by Ebbinghaus1, whose famous ‘forgetting curve’ revealed that people are unable to retrieve roughly 50% of information one hour after encoding. In addition to simple forgetting, memories routinely become distorted27. The public perception of memory, however, is typically that memory is akin to a video recorder8 (Box 1). This distinction between the perception and reality of memory has important consequences in the context of the courtroom. In the legal system, like among the general public, it is generally assumed that memory is highly accurate and largely indelible, at least in the case of ‘strong’ memories.

Recently, some regional jurisdictions, such as New Jersey10,11, Massachusetts12, Texas13, and North Carolina14 have implemented procedural changes designed to mitigate effects of memory biases and to best preserve accurate memories of eyewitnesses. However, the legal system writ large has been slow to adapt to research findings on memory, even though these findings have implications not only for eyewitness testimony, but also for how jurors remember and weigh evidence. Interest in the research of memory processes and their relevance to the courtroom has increased since the advent of DNA evidence, which has exonerated hundreds of individuals who were falsely convicted on the basis of eyewitness testimony. …

Conclusions

Memory is imperfect and is susceptible to distortion and loss. There are adaptive reasons for generalization and forgetting7. Indeed, Luria’s famous report of the mnemonist S.85 readily shows how an inability to forget can severely impair normal functioning. In addition, the neurobiological mechanisms that underlie the occurrence of distortions in memory also allow memories to be updated and strengthened. Unfortunately, in the courtroom ‘memory’ is often misunderstood and undue assumptions are made about its veridicality.

Thus, there needs to be greater education and awareness of memory processes in judicial settings and in daily life. Society would benefit from a better understanding of what factors affect memory accuracy and of their complexity and potentially counter-intuitive nature. Secondly, the legal system needs to reevaluate the probative value of memory. Witnessing a potentially traumatic event does not produce an unbiased, indelible memory of the event. Memory is an adaptive process based on reconstruction. It works well for what it is intended — guiding current and future behaviour. However, it is not infallible, and therefore should not be treated as such. For these reasons, some have argued that the legal system should not convict individuals on eyewitness testimony alone, but rather should require corroborative evidence83,86. Lastly, more research ought to be carried out on the complex mechanisms that underlie memory so that we can better understand its limits, improve its reliability, and detect when it has gone awry.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4183265/

Eyewitness memory

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Eyewitness memory is a person’s episodic memory for a crime or other dramatic event that he or she has witnessed.[1] Eyewitness testimony is often relied upon in the judicial system. It can also refer to an individual’s memory for a face, where they are required to remember the face of their perpetrator, for example.[2] However, the accuracy of eyewitness memories is sometimes questioned because there are many factors that can act during encoding and retrieval of the witnessed event which may adversely affect the creation and maintenance of the memory for the event. Experts have found evidence to suggest that eyewitness memory is fallible.[1] It has long been speculated that mistaken eyewitness identification plays a major role in the wrongful conviction of innocent individuals. A growing body of research now supports this speculation, indicating that mistaken eyewitness identification is responsible for more convictions of the innocent than all other factors combined.[3][4][5] The Innocence Project determined that 75% of the 239 DNA exoneration cases had occurred due to inaccurate eyewitness testimony. It is important to inform the public about the flawed nature of eyewitness memory and the difficulties relating to its use in the criminal justice system so that eyewitness accounts are not viewed as the absolute truth.[6]

Encoding

During the event

Challenges of identifying faces

People struggle to identify faces in person or from photos, a difficulty arising from the encoding of faces.[7] When participants were given a basic memory test from an array of photos or a lineup, they struggled to accurately identify the images and had low recognition. This finding provides a starting point for estimating the accuracy of eyewitnesses’ identification of others involved in a traumatic event. It can only get more challenging for a person to accurately encode a face when they are experiencing a traumatic event.[7] Because courts rely on eyewitness facial recognition, it is important to acknowledge that identification is not always accurate.[8] Face-specific cognitive and neural processes show contributions to holistic processing and recognition in the episodic memories of eyewitnesses.[9] Unreliability of eyewitness identifications may be a result of mismatching between how faces are holistically processed and how composite systems retrieve features in faces during an event.[10]

Other-race effect

The other-race effect (i.e. the own-race bias, cross-race effect, other-ethnicity effect, same-race advantage) is one factor thought to impact the accuracy of facial recognition. Studies investigating this effect have shown that a person is better able to recognize faces that match their own race but are less reliable at identifying other more unfamiliar races, thus inhibiting encoding.[11] Various explanations for this effect have been proposed. The perceptual expertise account suggests that with an increase of exposure to one’s own race, perceptual mechanisms develop which allow people to be more proficient at remembering faces of their own race.[12] The socio-cognitive account predicts that motivational and/or attentional components over focus on the race of a person.[12] Another hypothesis is that each race pays attention to certain facial details to differentiate between faces.[13] However, other races might not encode these same features. A final suggestion is that faces of the same race are encoded more deeply, leading a witness to have a more detailed memory for those faces; but there has not been much research to support this hypothesis. Research on the other race effect has mainly focused on the African American and Caucasian races. Most research has shown that white eyewitnesses exhibit the other-race effect, however this effect does extend to other races too.[13] In general, memory is an individual process and that conceptualization of race causes racial ambiguity in facial recognition. Mono-racial eyewitnesses may depend on categorization more than multiracial eyewitnesses, who develop a more fluid concept of race.[14] Perception may affect the immediate encoding of these unreliable notions due to prejudices, which can influence the speed of processing and classification of racially ambiguous targets. The ambiguity in eyewitness memory facial recognition can be attributed to the divergent strategies that are used when under the influence of racial bias. It should be noted this phenomenon is not limited to race. Stereotypes of any kind (whether they be related to age, gender, etc.) can affect the encoding of information at the time of the event. For example, if one is held at gunpoint by two individuals, one of whom is a man and the other is a woman wearing a hat, the victim may quickly fall back on the belief that men are more likely to be aggressors. Consequently, the victim may encode the situation as involving two male assailants, yielding problematic effects in the process of identifying the assailants later on.

Stress and trauma

Stress or trauma during an event can affect the encoding of the memory.[15] Traumatic events may cause memory to be repressed out of conscious awareness.[16] An inability to access the repressed memory is argued to occur in cases involving child sexual abuse. Another way encoding a memory can be affected is when the person involved in a traumatic event experiences dissociation; he or she mentally removes themselves from the situation, which may serve as a coping mechanism. Lastly, trauma may induce a flashbulb effect; the witness believes they vividly remember significant details of a salient event, although accuracy must be determined of such memories .[15] In legal settings the mental state of an individual at both witnessing a crime and in testimony can affect the success of their memory retrieval. Stress in small amounts is thought to aid memory, whereby stress hormones released by the amygdala promote the consolidation of emotional memories.[17] Nevertheless, stress in high amounts may hinder memory performance. Witnesses of severe crimes or trauma can suffer from further implications, such as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)[18] or even Psychogenic Amnesia.[19]

Post traumatic stress disorder

Explicit memory (used in legal testimony) is affected by post traumatic stress disorder(PTSD); individuals diagnosed with PTSD can struggle to recall explicit events from their memory, usually those which are especially traumatic events. This may be due to the individual preferring not to think about the unpleasant memory, which they may rather forget. Implicit memory, on the other hand, does not seem to be affected in the same way that explicit memory does, rather some individuals with PTSD may score higher on implicit memory tests than non-PTSD individuals.[18]

Psychogenic amnesia

Psychogenic amnesia (or dissociative amnesia) can affect explicit memory for a particular event.[19] Most often cases of psychogenic amnesia occur after witnessing an extremely violent crime or trauma, such as war.[20]

Mood-congruency effect

Everyday memory can be affected by factors such as stress or mood. The ‘mood congruency’ effect refers to memory being aided by a matching of mood at the encoding/learning stage to the retrieval stage. If a memory is encoded under stressfull conditions it may be more likely that the memory is better recalled if stress levels at retrieval are congruent to stress levels at encoding. Mood congruency may affect a witnesses ability to recall a highly stressful crime, if conditions of encoding and retrieval are different.[20] Moderate amounts of stress may be beneficial to memory by the release of corticosteroids. Conversely, too much stress (and therefore an extreme influx of corticosteroids) can affect function of the hippocampus and therefore hinder memory. Very high levels of corticosteroid release may be very detrimental for memory.[21]

Weapon focus

The weapon focus effect suggests that the presence of a weapon narrows a person’s attention, thus affects eyewitness memory.[22] A person focuses on the central detail (for example, the weapon) and loses focus on the peripheral details (for example, the perpetrator’s characteristics). While the weapon is remembered clearly, the memories of the other details of the scene suffer.[22] The weapon focus effect occurs because additional items require more visual attention, therefore they are frequently not processed. This increased focus of attention on central aspects takes away attentional resources from peripheral details. For example, if a gun was brought into a school, it would attract significant amount of attention, because students are not used to seeing that item. When participants were watching a slideshow, and were seeing an unusual stimulus item, their reaction times were slower (regardless whether the stimulus was dangerous) in comparison to reaction times for more frequent stimulus. When the item was dangerous (i.e. a weapon), participants had a lower accuracy and confidence than the control group’s.[23] Another hypothesis is that seeing a weapon might cause an aroused state. In an aroused state, people focus on central details instead of peripheral ones.[24]

Interference

The testimony of a witness can lose validity due to too many external stimuli, that may affect what was witnessed during the crime, and therefore obstruct memory. For example, if an individual witnesses a car accident on a very public street, there may be too many cues distracting the witness from the main focus. Numerous interfering stimulus inputs may suppress the importance of the stimulus of focus, the accident. This can degrade the memory traces of the event, and diminish the representation of those memories. This is known as the cue-overload principle.[25]

After the event

Because memory is subject to contamination, the most reliable test of a memory is the initial test.[26] Police procedures can reduce the effects of contamination on memory with proper testing protocols.[26]

Misinformation effect

Witnesses can be subject to memory distortions that can alter their account of events. It is of particular interest that the memory of an eyewitness can become compromised by other information, such that an individual’s memory becomes biased. This can increase eyewitnesses sensitivity to the misinformation effect. Individuals report what they believe to have witnessed at the time of the crime, even though this may be the result of a false memory. These effects can be a result of post-event information.[27] It is very important to provide witnesses with helpful response options on memory tests and to be warned of misleading influences that might affect how the memory of the event is recalled at a later time.[28] Many employees, police force workers, and others are trained in post-warning in order to reduce influences on the misinformation effect, which can be predicted before crime. In their studies, many researchers use eyewitnesses to study retrieval-blocking effects, which interfere with a witness’ ability to recall information.[29] Misleading information prior to the event can also influence misinformation effects. Other studies also address how the misinformation effect seems to amplify over increasing recall.[30] Discussing events and being questioned multiple times may cause various versions of the testimonies. However, the earliest records prove to be the most accurate due to a minimized misinformation effect.

Unconscious transference

Many mistaken identifications are the result of unconscious transference, or the inability to distinguish between the perpetrator and another person who was encountered in a different context.[31] In many of these cases, the culprit is confused with a different person who was present at the crime scene. Implicit processing takes place during the event, in which the witness encodes the general features of innocent bystanders, creating a sense of familiarity. At retrieval, this familiarity could cause people who were merely present in the crime scene to be confused with the culprit.[31] After viewing a video of a crime involving a thief and two innocent bystanders, participants were asked to identify the perpetrator from a lineup including the three persons present in the video and three other people never before encountered. Most participants falsely identified an innocent person from the lineup. Furthermore, participants were more likely to misidentify one of the two innocent confederates in the video than one of the three unfamiliar people.[31] Unconscious transference occurs in this instance when the witness misattributes his or her sense of familiarity of the perpetrator to a bystander.[32] This confusing effect of familiarity is found in the mug shot procedure as well.[33] The presentation of mug shot arrays alone does not seem to influence identification accuracy. However, this presentation can be influential if the police lineups include individuals who were earlier featured in the mug shot array. Individuals appearing in police lineups that also appeared in previous photo arrays may be identified as quickly as identifying the actual target. Therefore, in cases where a suspect is identified from mug shots following a line-up, it is uncertain whether the line-up identification is a result of the recognition of the perpetrator or of the detection of a person seen previously in mug shots.[33]

Retrieval

Lineups

police lineup is a method for an eyewitness to identify a perpetrator by viewing a series of photos, or a live group of suspects.[22] One possible outcome of a lineup is that the eyewitness can correctly identify the criminal. Another outcome is that the eyewitness can correctly state that the criminal is not in the lineup. A third option is that the eyewitness can fail to recognize that the culprit is present. Lastly, the eyewitness can incorrectly select another suspect. The ideal result is to correctly identify the offender, and the worst outcome is to mistakenly identify an innocent.[22]

Police role in lineup

There are specific guidelines for police to follow when administering a lineup, to reduce bias in the lineup and increase the accuracy of eyewitness judgements.[22] Police must reduce the pressure that eyewitnesses feel to select a criminal from an array of photos or persons. They should make sure that the eyewitness is aware that the perpetrator might not be in the lineup. Also, police should conduct a double blind procedure that does not allow them to see the lineup. This prevents police from giving the eyewitness any information, intentional or not, about who in the lineup is a police suspect. It also prevents the police from giving any feedback to the eyewitness. Feedback can produce a false confidence in the witness’ selection. When overseeing a lineup, the police can use speed of recognition to determine the validity of the identification. If the witness quickly identifies the perpetrator, then the selection is more likely to be correct.[22]

Style of lineup

sequential lineup presents a witness with a series of photos one at a time, requiring the participant to identify if each photo matches his/her memory before moving forward.[34] The witness does not know how many photos are in the group. In a simultaneous lineup, the photos or suspects are viewed together. Sequential lineups produce fewer identifications, since they are more challenging, and require absolute judgement. This means that the decision regarding the matching of the memory to the photo is independently made. On the other hand, a simultaneous lineup requires relative judgement, as the decision is not independent of the other possibilities. An absolute judgment is a judgment that requires the person to be 100 percent certain in their choice where a relative judgment is when someone makes up their mind based on what looks the closest. However, researchers such as Dr. Gary Wells from Iowa State University claim “during simultaneous lineups, witnesses use relative judgment, meaning that they compare lineup photographs or members to each other, rather than to their memory of the offender.”[35] Sequential lineups have been preferred historically, seeing as they do not rely on relative judgment. However, recent data suggests the preference for sequential lineups over simultaneous lineups may not be empirically supported. Individuals who participate in sequential lineups are less likely to make a selection at all, regardless if the selection is accurate or not. This suggests the sequential lineup fosters a more conservative shift in criterion to make a selection rather than an increased ability to pick the true perpetrator. Consequently, further research is needed before offering recommendations to police departments.[36]

Size of lineup

Lineup members should have diverse characteristics so that lineups are not biased toward or against the suspect. If the appearance of a person stands out amongst the otherwise indistinctive crowd, then an eyewitness is more likely to select that person regardless of their own recollection of the criminal. According to Schuster (2007), the suspect, if he is in the in person lineup or in a picture lineup, should not stand out from the others in the lineup. People’s eyes are drawn to what is different. If you make sure that all the men or women in the pictures have a similar appearance, have the same background in their picture, race, age, and are wearing the same or similar clothing, just to name a few, then the risk of getting a false positive will decrease. Thus, this lineup is suggestive.[37] Fillers should be added to the lineup in order to depict a broad spectrum of characteristics,[38] but must match any known description of the offender. If lineup members do not all match the known description of the offender then the lineup is biased toward the suspect.[39] Biased lineups have been shown to increase misidentifications, particularly in target-absent lineups.[40] Increasing the nominal size of a lineup (the actual number of suspects that are compiled) often decreases the potential for a wrong selection. Functional size also plays a role in lineup bias. Functional size is the reciprocal of the fraction of mock witnesses that choose the suspect from a lineup.[41] For example, in a lineup of nominal size 5, if 15 out of 30 mock witnesses (randomly chosen individuals that did not experience the offence) choose the suspect, the functional size of the lineup is the reciprocal of 15/30, which is 30/15, or 2. So although the lineup has 5 members, functionally it only has 2. Effective size is the number of probable suspects. Police use these three numbers to evaluate a lineup.[38]

Viewpoints

Many studies, as well as police procedures, are dependent on photo lineups or police lineups where the eyewitness views the suspects from a distance. This procedure is done in an attempt to eliminate suspects and identify the perpetrator. These types of lineups allow only small degrees of visual information for the eyewitness, such as limited viewing angles, which restrict the level of detail compared to a computerized virtual lineup where witnesses can see the targets from multiple angles and distances. One might anticipate that examination of the suspects from unlimited viewpoints would allow for better recognition cues, than when compared to limited views. However, unlimited visual information may be disadvantageous and counterproductive if the information offered at the time of retrieval was not actually present at the time of memory encoding.[42] For example, if an eyewitness only saw the face of the perpetrator from one angle, seeing the lineup participants from other viewpoints might be distracting. Other studies have demonstrated that unlimited viewpoints do improve accuracy in police lineups.[42] It should also be noted that the eyewitness accuracy improves when the distance between the suspect and witness matches the distance during the initial witnessing of the crime.[43]

Retroactive interference

Another phenomenon that may interfere with an eyewitness’ memory is retroactive interference. This occurs when new information is processed that obstructs the retrieval of old information.[44] A common source of interference that may occur after the event of a crime is the reporting of the crime. Police investigations include questioning that is often suggestive. The processing of new information may disrupt or entirely replace old information.[45] If a police officer has reason to believe that a suspect is guilty the interrogator’s bias can influence the eyewitness’ memory. The interrogators can also put pressure on witnesses causing them to want to select a perpetrator from a police lineup. Eyewitnesses are often unsuspecting of the interrogator bias and believe their memories to be uncontaminated.[46]

Co-witness contamination

The presence of a co-witness can often contaminate memories.[47] When witnesses confer about an event they can end up agreeing on an incorrect narrative. Research has found that 71% of witnesses changed their eyewitness accounts to include false components that their co-witnesses remembered.[48] This makes it very difficult to reconstruct the actual account of an event. To prevent this effect, police should separate witnesses as early as possible before the reporting of the event. Unfortunately this is difficult, especially if the police do not get involved immediately after the event. Police should inform witnesses of the possibility of contamination as soon as possible. Witnesses should be interviewed as soon as possible with police noting if the witnesses have compared accounts. Once the accounts have been recorded, police should make notes of similarities or differences that could point to contaminated details or facts. [49]

Confidence

A witness identifying a suspect can make a decision with little or great confidence. Level of confidence varies between different witnesses and situations. There are two types of confidence: confidence in a witness’ own ability to make an identification (prior to viewing a police lineup) and confidence in having made an accurate identification or accurate rejection. It must be considered that memories are normally vulnerable to multiple influences and prone to distortions and deceptions: “they are never constant and never result in fully accurate representations [and] these changes occur without us being aware of them.”[50] As a consequence, the witness’ confidence in his/her ability to make a correct identification should not be used to assess the accuracy of identification. Witnesses should be asked to attempt identifications even if their confidence is low. Confidence ratings after identification of a suspect is a better ( but not perfect) predictor.[51]

In many experiments, witnesses are asked to rate their confidence in their decision after making an identification from a lineup. A number of psychologists have investigated factors that might affect the confidence accuracy relationship. In a recent review of 15 experiments, suspect identifications made with high confidence were, on average, 97 percent accurate.[26] On the other hand, witnesses who report low confidence are highly suggestive of inaccurate identification. University of Virginia law professor Brandon Garrett analyzed trial materials for 161 DNA exonerated individuals and found that in 57 percent of those cases, it was possible to determine that, in the initial (uncontaminated) memory test, the eyewitnesses were, at best, uncertain.[26]

The optimality hypothesis states that factors influencing the optimality of information processing also influence the reliability of the confidence estimate. During situations in which information processing conditions are less than optimal (e.g. the perpetrator is disguised or duration of exposure is brief) witnesses’ performance during identification decreases and they are less confident in their decision. The confidence accuracy correlation is thus estimated to be stronger in situations of optimal information processing such as longer exposure time, and weaker under conditions that are not optimal.[52]

Certain factors affect identification accuracy without influencing confidence whereas other factors influence confidence without having an effect on identification accuracy. Reconstructive processes in memory (i.e. the influence of post-event information on stored memories) can influence identification accuracy while not necessarily affecting confidence. Social influence processes (i.e. committing to a decision) might have an effect on confidence judgements while having little to no effect on the accuracy of the identification.[53]

Interviews

The method of conducting an interview has great implication on the accuracy of the testimony. When the person being interviewed is forced to provide more information, he/she is more likely to engage in confabulation.[54] For example, when participants were shown a video and instructed to answer all questions (answerable and unanswerable) about its content, they often fabricated information.[54] When prodded too much to remember something, people often fall upon false memories. This effect is also seen in hypnosis: when people intensely try and are guided to remember something, they may end up mistaking a vivid imagination as a memory.[55]

Cognitive interview technique

Researchers have developed a strategy, entitled the cognitive interview technique, to elicit the most accurate eyewitness memory.[56] In this preferred protocol for conducting interviews, the interrogator should make the witness feel comfortable, ask open-ended questions, and grant the witness freedom in describing the event.[22] In addition, the interviewer should encourage the witness to exhaust his/her memory by reinstating the context of the event, recalling the events in different orders, and viewing the event scene from different perspectives.[22]

Suggestibility

Distortions in a witness’s memory can be induced by suggestive questioning procedures.[57] Asking eyewitnesses to repeatedly retrieve information in multiple interviews may enhance memory because the event is being rehearsed many times or, as in many cases, increase suggestibility. Misleading information offered by the investigators may attract more attention than the originally encoded information, so the witness’ memory of the event is altered to include erroneous details suggested during the interview.[57] In addition, repeating questions could make the witness feel pressured to change his or her answer or elaborate on an already-given response with fabricated details.[58] Open-ended questioning can reduce the level of retrieval-enhanced suggestibility because the witness is not subjected to testing manipulation by the interviewer.[57]

Contextual reinstatement

Contextual reinstatement is a common technique used to help eyewitnesses remember details about a specific environment– reviewing the initial environment in which the original information was encoded. Taking a witness back to the scene where the event occurred, for example, will help facilitate the accuracy in identifying perpetrators. Reinstatement is thought to improve recall as it provides memory retrieval cues. Research has demonstrated that pairing faces of suspects or words with contextual cues at the scene of the crime will enhance performance on recognition tasks.[59][60] Therefore, it seems practical that these results can be applied to eyewitness identification. Methods commonly used to examine context reinstatement include photographs of the environment/scene, mental contextual reinstatement cues, and guided recollection. Studies show that re-exposing participants to the crime scene does enhance performance in facial recognition.[61] There were also notable effects for context reinstatement where improvement on correct identifications while increasing false alarms. Reports also show that the magnitude of improvement via context reinstatement increased in lifelike situations compared to laboratory studies.[62]

Experimental context

An alteration of context was found to be one of the most important predictors of recognition accuracy. Such changes in experimental context have been shown to have effects similar to transformations in appearance, such as disguises. Criminal identifications can be influenced by a change in context. Investigators must account for the fact that encountering an acquaintance that we usually see in one context, such as work place, alters memory generalizability when compared to encountering the same acquaintance in another environment that acts like an unassociated context, such as a grocery store. The changes in environment make it difficult to identify this acquaintance.[62] Initially, the individual might seem familiar but because this person is not in the normal context, it might be difficult to place the face and recall the name. Researchers have begun to implement procedures for reinstating the context surrounding a specific event in an attempt to improve identification accuracy. Reinstating the crime scene is often not possible. Sometimes, however it is possible to have eyewitnesses imagine and thus mentally reinstate the surroundings with imagery instructions and other mnemonic devices.[62] In some instances, objects from the crime scene such as guns or clothing can be used additionally to help reinstate the context. Such methods have successfully shown to improve reliability and accuracy of eyewitness recall.

Verbal overshadowing effect

The process of describing a face entails thinking about its features independently, but people process faces configurally (as a whole, encoding the features in relation to one another).[63] So, the process of describing the face often impairs the memory of it—this is the verbal overshadowing effect. A verbal overshadowing effect typically refers to the negative effect on memory recall as a result of giving a verbal description of a visual object. For example, a witness who gives a verbal description of a face is likely to have subsequent impaired recognition for that face.[64] However, Perfect et al. (2002) predicted that the verbal overshadowing effect would also be seen in voice recognition; that is that verbally describing a voice should also impair subsequent recognition of that voice. They predicted this because they argued that voices were difficult to articulate and so it is likely they would be vulnerable to the verbal overshadowing effect. This was found to be the case. Moreover, a dissociation between accuracy and confidence was observed. Participants’ confidence that they had identified the correct voice in the audio-lineup was not influenced by the verbal overshadowing effect; in other words, verbal overshadowing had the effect of decreasing earwitnesses’ recognition ability but without their knowledge.[65]

Child testimony

Most of the research on eyewitness memory has involved adults, despite the fact that it is not uncommon for children to have been involved in a crime or to have been the central witness of a crime. Statistics from the Crown Prosecution Service[66] revealed that 1,116 children under the age of 10 were witnesses to a crime in England and Wales in 2008/9.

Children’s testimony refers to when children are required to testify in court after witnessing or being involved in a crime. In situations where a child is the main witness of a crime, the result of the hearing is dependent on the child’s memory of the event. And there are several important issues associated with eyewitness memory of children. For example, the accuracy of the child’s explanation, in such situations, coupled with how well the child can identify the setting of the crime and the individuals involved in the crime, influence the credibility of the child’s testimony. Whilst research shows that it is possible for children to provide relevant and accurate forensic information, they appear less reliable than adult witnesses and like all witnesses, can create false memories.[67][68]

Moreover, children often have a limited vocabulary, a desire to please the officer, or difficulty answering questions because of trauma.[68] Using early childhood memories in eyewitness testimony can also be challenging because for the first 1–2 years of life, brain structures such as the limbic system, which holds the hippocampus and the amygdala and is involved in memory storage,[69] are not yet fully developed.[70] Research has demonstrated that children can remember events from before the age of 3–4 years, but that these memories decline as children get older (see childhood amnesia).[71][72]

Children can be involved in testimony not only when they are witnesses, but also when they are victims. There have been several cases of children recovering false memories of childhood abuse.[73] Children as especially suggestible[74] and in cases of recovered memories, is hard to determine whether the recovered memory is accurate or imagined. Due to the sensitivity of these cases, strategic interviewing is implemented for children, which may result in the validity of the memory to suffer. Strategic interviewing must be assessed with sensitivity on an individual bases and without leading questions, as they may influence the child’s answer.[75] Additional influences may include individuals surrounding the child prior to, and during the hearing. If children hear new information from such individuals, studies show that children will more than likely agree with what the others said – regardless of the child’s initial opinion.[76]

Studies on children show that the average child is at greater risk for memory loss, due to the brain’s immaturity and plasticity, when compared to an average adult.[21] Poorer memory performance in young kids was shown when youth of different ages were asked to recall a doctor’s visit.[15] Children aged 3–5 answered with much less accuracy than individuals aged 6–15, indicating developmental differences in memory capacity. Furthermore, it has been shown that information encoded and stored in memory is dependent on the extent of knowledge regarding the event. That is, if a child is exposed to an event that he or she knows little about, their memory of the event will not be as accurate when compared to a child who is more knowledgeable on event-related topics.[77] These results of increased sensitivity, suggestibility and memory loss in children lead one to question the competency of a child to serve as an eyewitness. Researchers have determined that a child should be considered a competent witness if he or she has the capacity to observe, communicate, produce sufficient memories, differentiate truth from lies, and understand the obligation to tell the truth.[15] However, the same caution that is taken with all eyewitnesses should be taken with child testimony, as all eyewitness testimonies are prone to inaccuracies.[3][4][5]

Intellectual ability and testimony

Individuals with intellectual disabilities are at a higher risk for sexual abuse and exploitation because they are often dependent on others and uneducated or physically incompetent in ways of self-protection.[78] Therefore, much research has been devoted to investigating the accountability of these individuals in eyewitness testimonies. When a group of adults chosen by the Developmental Disabilities Association was compared to a control group of college students, they performed equally well when a target was absent from a lineup. However, the control group were better at recognizing when a target was present in a lineup, leading to the determination that people with intellectual disabilities are more suggestible and likely to confabulate.[78] Children with intellectual disabilities show similar patterns in their eyewitness accounts. After watching a video of a crime, children with these disabilities performed worse than non-disabled kids of the same age on free recall, open-ended questions, and both general and specific misleading questions.[79] These children performed better than the age-matched control group only on leading questions with yes or no answers, suggesting that they are more likely to acquiesce in the interview.[79] These findings indicate that individuals with intellectual disabilities could be considered competent witnesses if interrogated in a non-leading manner.

Eidetic memory

Individuals who are said to possess eidetic memories are thought to hold to an image in mind for longer and with more accuracy than the average individual.[80] But evidence for eidetic memory is limited, and there is no evidence for photographic memory or a memory being an exact replica of an event. The memories of those who claim to have superior eidetic memories are just as flawed as the memories of individuals who have normal mnemonic abilities;[81] people who claim to have photographic memories are not immune to flawed eyewitness testimony. Witnesses who believe that they are able to retrieve an accurate mental photograph will also be much more confident in their account of the event and may influence the trial outcome.[80] Accuracy recall of such visual scenes is a controversial issue. In the past, eidetikers were believed to have extremely accurate recall for visual displays, but modern research findings might reveal a different story. Some research demonstrates that eidetic children have greater recall accuracy for visual details compared to non-eidetic children. Other researchers have failed to find any advantage between the two groups. It is also hypothesized that eidetic imagery is not exactly related to memory and improves recall for visual details. As such, photographic memory is not useful in the courtroom.[82]

The frequency of eidetic imagery is low in adults and shows greatest frequency in early child development.[83] In fact, it is almost non-existent past the age of 7. When procedures are used to classify eidetic memory separate from the characteristic of afterimage and memory image, a small number of children are classified as true eidetikers. These children are still suggestible; their eyewitness testimonies may still have error.

Earwitness memory

Research investigating earwitness memory has only recently emerged from the shadow of the extensively investigated phenomena of eyewitness memory and eyewitness testimony, despite having been in use within the English justice system since the 1660s.[84][85]Earwitness memory refers to a person’s auditory memory for a crime or incriminatory information they have heard.[86] Much of the research which has been conducted on earwitness memory focuses on speaker recognition, otherwise known as voice recognition, whilst there is less research which investigates memory for environmental sounds.[87] The majority of the literature on voice and face recognition finds a robust face advantage; compared to voice recognition, face recognition appears to be the stronger pathway, with most individuals finding it much more difficult to recall a voice compared to recalling a face.[88][89][90]

Eyewitness vs. earwitness accuracy

A substantial proportion of the literature into witness testimony finds a robust recall advantage for visual stimuli compared to auditory stimuli. We seem to have a profound memory advantage for visual objects and scenes whilst being poorer at remembering auditory information.[91] This therefore has clear implications for eyewitness and earwitness memory; what is seen should be more likely to be remembered than what is heard by a witness. This finding can be extended to faces and voices; within the person recognition literature, it has been found that individuals are far better at identifying a person by their face as opposed to their voice.[92][93][94]

Non-verbal memory: environmental sound

Researchers define environmental sounds as those that are either animate, inanimate, artificial or natural; sounds produced by real events as opposed to machine-generated sounds; sounds that are more complex than laboratory-produced sounds and those that are dynamic and convey a sense of activity.[95][96] Examples include the ring of a doorbell, coughing, rain, a car engine, a railroad crossing signal, and so on. Such environmental sounds are important sources of information and provide us with knowledge of our surroundings.

Research has found that recall for environmental sounds can be dependent upon the storage and retrieval of verbalizable interpretations. In one study, individuals heard a selection of ambiguous environmental sounds and attempted to label each sound as they were presented. A week later, individuals labelled the sounds again and it was found that re-labelling the sounds subsequently caused individuals to perform much better in the recognition test. Recognition of environmental sounds therefore appears dependent upon labeling both at input and in the test phase, either when labels are created by subjects as they hear the sounds, or when labels are generated by the experimenter and presented to subjects.[97] More recent research has found that it is possible to memorize the loudness of an environmental sound.[98] However it is important to remember that a lot of research investigating environmental sound and memory recall is conducted in a laboratory setting and so has limited ecological validity and generalizability.

Verbal memory: voice recognition

Compared to memory recall for faces, voice recall appears to be significantly more vulnerable to interference.[94][99] These consistent findings suggest that earwitness memory is far more vulnerable to the effects of interference compared to eyewitness memory;[100]although the weight placed on eyewitness memory in court should also be carefully considered as there is much evidence to suggest its fallibility.[101][102] For example, some studies have found that eyewitness identification can be impaired by effects such as the weapon focus effect or verbal overshadowing.[103][104] Nevertheless, voice recognition appears to be the pathway most significantly impaired by interfering factors.

Face overshadowing effect

A face overshadowing effect is often found to occur, whereby individuals’ voice recognition performance is impaired with the co-presentation of a face.[105] Visual information therefore appears to have the ability to significantly interfere with the recall of auditory information. However, research has investigated whether earwitness memory is impaired to the same extent when the face of the one speaking is concealed in some way. Research shows that when a face is covered, with a balaclava for instance, accuracy for voice identification slightly improves; however a face overshadowing effect still exists despite the earwitness being able to see fewer facial features.[106]

Pitch of voice

Voice pitch has also been identified as a factor that can affect voice recognition performance. Individuals are likely to exaggerate their memory for pitch; upon hearing a high pitched voice in an initial presentation (such as the perpetrator’s voice in a crime), individuals are likely to choose an even higher-pitched voice in the test phase (audio line-up). Similarly, upon hearing a low-pitched voice, they are likely to remember the voice as being even lower in pitch when voices are presented in an audio line-up.[107] Comparable cognitive functions seem to operate when individuals attempt to remember faces; ambiguity surrounding the ethnicity or gender of faces is likely to result in the individual’s recall of faces to be exaggerated with regards to ethnic and gender-related features. Researchers call this the accentuation effect.[108] It is suggested that voice pitch, alongside other ‘surface properties’ of speech such as speech content,[109] are instantaneously encoded into memory.[110] This contrasts with auditory features such as amplitude and speaking rate, of which there is contrary evidence about whether they are automatically encoded into memory.[111]

Other-accent effect

There is evidence to suggest that witnesses may find it harder to identify a perpetrator’s voice if the perpetrator speaks the witness’s native language with an accent compared to without one. It is thought that more cognitive effort is required to process a non-native speaker’s voice. This is because a ‘cost’ is placed on the listener, with accented voices violating the ‘speech schema’ the listener is familiar with in their own geographic region. Therefore, listeners may be required to expend more effort in order to recognize and distinguish the non-native speaker’s phonetic segments and words.[112][113]

An accent also has the potential to interfere with the witness’s ability to recognize the perpetrator’s appearance. It has been found that when witnesses are asked to recall a perpetrator, the perpetrator’s physical appearance is remembered less well when they have an accent compared to when they do not. This appears the case with different accents, speech content and how long a listener is exposed to the speaker. One proposed explanation for why accents can negatively affect the recall of visual information and eyewitness memory draws from Wickens’ (2002; 2008) multiple resource theory.[114][115] Wickens’ theory suggests that attentional resources are separated into distinct ‘pools’. Only visual and auditory tasks have access to visual and auditory attentional resources, respectively. However, when a task arises which requires the use of attentional resources from both modalities, this leads to competition for resources, in turn leading the inability to accomplish one or both tasks or resulting in poorer performance. Therefore, fewer general resources may have been available in order to encode and remember the perpetrator’s appearance after witnesses had used attentional resources for the processing of the accented voice and speech content.[113]

Direct hearing vs. devices

Whilst many earwitness accounts are attained directly and ‘in-the-moment’, many will be acquired over a telephone or over other communication devices. Whether the earwitness hears a conversation or other auditory information in person or hears it over a communication device could impact their rate of accuracy. However, contrary to this prediction, research has found no significant differences between the accuracy of voice identification when the voice was heard directly or over a mobile phone, despite the sound quality seeming poorer in the latter.[116]

Emotion

Researchers have also investigated to what extent the distinctiveness of a voice, such as heightened emotion, can aid or impair an individual’s recollection of it. There is evidence that faces are better remembered if they display emotion compared to when they appear neutral; in one study healthy control participants remembered more accurately happy faces than they did neutral faces.[117] Likewise, a host of studies have found that memories that are more emotional in nature are more complex and are less likely to be forgotten compared to memories that are more neutral.[118][119] It therefore seems logical for researchers to explore whether auditory material which is emotional in nature is also remembered better. Research has produced conflicting results. Bradley and Lang (2000) found that there was a memory advantage for auditory material when it was more emotional compared to when it was more neutral.[120] The authors also found that participants’ physiological activity when they listened to emotionally arousing sounds was very similar to the physiological arousal produced when they were shown emotional images. However, studies investigating emotion in voices have found no significant differences between recall rates for emotional voices and neutral voices, with some research even demonstrating that emotion can impair memory recall for the voice. For instance, it was found that angry voices were recalled to a lesser extent compared to if they were neutral in tone.[121] This finding has been supported by other studies which have also found that rather than enhancing voice identification, emotion may significantly interfere with it.[122] However it is important to remember that ethical guidelines will confine the levels of emotionality that are appropriate to be induced in participants in a laboratory study environment.

Time-delay

The amount of time between when an individual hears incriminatory information or the voice of their perpetrator, for instance, and the time they are required to recall the auditory information as an earwitness can affect their recall accuracy rate. Memory for auditory information including voice recognition appears to decline over time; studies have found that participants can recall more correct auditory information immediately after the initial presentation than after a four-day time interval, supporting several other studies finding similar results. Furthermore, the extent to which the time-interval affects memory recall for auditory information depends upon whether the witness just heard the auditory information of whether it was accompanied by visual information too, such as the face of the perpetrator. One study has found that recall is enhanced when both auditory information is heard and visual information is seen, as opposed to just hearing auditory information. Still, when individuals are asked to remember the voice and the speech content, they are only likely to have remembered the gist of what has been said as opposed to remembering verbatim.[123][124] This clearly has implications for the amount of weight that is placed upon earwitness testimony in court. Earwitnesses are not typically required to give statements or recall a voice or auditory information immediately after an event has occurred, but instead are required to recall information after a time-delay. This could significantly impair the accuracy of their recall. The testimonies of those who have only heard the voice of a suspect compared to a witness who has both seen the face and heard the voice of a suspect should also be treated with extreme caution in court.[125]

Children’s earwitness memory

It is of critical importance that research into children’s earwitness memory is also conducted in order to secure justice for child victims and witnesses. Compared to adult earwitness memory, the area of child earwitness memory has been largely neglected. In one of few studies comparing adult and child earwitnesses, Öhman, Eriksson & Granhag (2011) found that only children in the older age-group of 11–13 years performed at above chance levels for voice recognition, compared to the younger-age group of children (aged 7–9) and adults. They suggest that under the age of 10 a child may be overwhelmed by the cognitive demands of the task and so do not perform above chance levels on the task. Meanwhile, adults made the highest percentage (55%) of false identifications. They also found that voice pitch level and speaker rate was highly correlated with children’s but not adults’ false identification rates.[67] Overall however, the results confirmed other studies which have also shown that in general, earwitness performance for unfamiliar voices is poor.[126]

Other research found that children aged 11 to 13 years old who were tested very shortly after exposure to a voice made more correct identifications compared with children who were tested after a time interval of two weeks. This was found not to be the case for adult witnesses.[127]

Auditory memory in blind individuals

It has been suggested that blind individuals have an enhanced ability to hear and recall auditory information in order to compensate for a lack of vision.[128] However, whilst blind adults’ neural systems demonstrate heightened excitability and activity compared to sighted adults, it is still not exactly clear to what extent this compensatory hypothesis is accurate.[129] Nevertheless, many studies have found that there appears to be a high activation of certain visual brain areas in blind individuals when they perform non-visual tasks. This suggests that in blind individuals’ brains, a reorganization of what are normally visual areas has occurred in order for them to process non-visual input. This supports a compensatory hypothesis in the blind.[130][131][132]

Enhancement

Research has investigated how to improve the accuracy of earwitness performance. One study investigated whether an interview called a Cognitive Interview would improve adult or child (11–13 years) voice recognition performance or speech content recall if it was administered immediately after the event. It was predicted that a cognitive interview would improve the likelihood of witnesses making a correct identification and improve recall of speech content, whether immediately after the event of after a time-delay and regardless of age. It was also predicted that adults would recall more content than children, because other studies have indicated that children provide less detail than adults during free recall.[133] However, results revealed poor correct identification rates, regardless of the type of interview earwitnesses had received (19.8%), as well as high false identification rates; 38.7% of participants incorrectly identified an innocent suspect. It did not seem to matter if an interview had been conducted shortly after the event or not. Moreover, there did not seem to be any difference between children and adults in terms of the number of suspects they correctly identified by their voice. Many researchers would suggest that this furthers the case for children (aged 11–13) to be thought of as equally capable of proving potentially helpful earwitness accounts within court settings.[134]

Example

In 1984, Jennifer Thompson-Cannino selected Ronald Cotton from both a photographic line-up and later a physical line-up as her rapist, leading to his conviction of rape and burglary and a sentence of life in prison plus fifty-four years. Ronald Cotton spent eleven years in prison due to faulty eyewitness memory before DNA evidence exonerated him in 1995. Despite Jennifer’s strong intent to study her rapist’s features during the traumatic event for the purpose of identifying him afterward, she fell victim to encoding limitations at the time of the assault. Jennifer undoubtedly experienced a great degree of stress on the night of her assault with a knife pressed to her neck and a feeling of absolute powerlessness. “There in my memory, at the knife-edge of fear, time distorted”.[135] She also fell prey to factors after the incident that affected the accuracy of her recall. Even if memories are correctly encoded at the time of the event, interference and decay can alter these memories in negative ways. The simple passage of time entails memory loss, and any new information presented between the time of the crime and testimony can interfere with a witness’s recall. When Jennifer was asked to identify her perpetrator from a series of photographs, she was told by officers that she should not feel compelled to make an identification. However, Jennifer’s faith in the legal system led her to believe that the police must have had a suspect to warrant her participation in photographic identification. And when Jennifer selected the photo of Ronald, the police told her she did great. It should be noted the photograph of Jennifer’s true rapist, Bobby Poole, was not included in the lineup. The positive feedback Jennifer received allowed her to begin incorporating details from the photograph into her memory of the attack. The fact that Jennifer took five minutes to study the pictures before she selected Ronald Cotton’s photo also allowed Jennifer ample opportunity to encode Ronald’s face as her assailant and thereby interfere with her original memory. The photographs were presented simultaneously, allowing Jennifer to compare the photographs to each other as opposed to her memory of the event. As a result, when she was later asked to choose her assailant from a physical line-up, Jennifer saw Ronald in her memory and thus chose him. The police further solidified her choice by telling her “We thought that might be the guy…it’s the same person you picked from the photos.”.[136] As a result, the authorities viewed Jennifer as the ideal eyewitness, one who was motivated to remember the face of her assailant during the event and subsequently confident in her identification of the target. Unfortunately, the level of confidence in an eyewitness’ recall is not associated with accuracy of identification. The eyewitness’ confidence in his or her recall is, however, strongly associated with the jury’s belief in the accuracy of the eyewitness’ testimony, thus increasing the risk of assigning guilty verdicts to innocent individuals.[137] In conclusion, unconscious transference essentially contaminated Jennifer’s memory. Even after Jennifer learned of Ronald’s innocence, she still saw his face in her memory of the attack years later. It wasn’t until she met with Ronald face-to-face and he gave her his forgiveness did she begin to see Ronald for himself rather than as her assailant, thus beginning a remarkable and unexpected friendship.

References

 

Story 2: Will The Senate Pass A Tax Reform Bill?– NO — Tax Cut Bill — Yes — Videos —

Robert Shiller / Nov 14, 2017 / On The Growing Market Worries

Stockman on Dow Reaching New Highs: It’s a ‘Wild, Gambling Casino’

David Stockman / Nov 15, 2017 / Corporate tax rate reduction won’t go into wages

Recite Al Jazeeri: Arthur Laffer

Senators Gather to Tout Tax Reform Bill

Battle Looms as GOP House, Senate Bills Diverge. #GOP #TaxReform

Reagan Budget Director Stockman Thrashes GOP Tax Bill as ‘Ideological Imposter’ of ‘81 Bill

Senate Republicans unveil their tax plan

Sen. Pat Toomey On Tax Reform: We Can Iron Out Differences Between House & Senate Bills | CNBC

Mark Levin: The House and Senate bill on taxes are not serious tax reform plans and should fail!

 

Story 3: Who is on the Congressional CREEP List of Sexual Harassers in Congress and Their Staffs ? — Who is next to be outed? — Shout Animal House — Intimacy — Getting To Know You–Videos

More Cap. Hill Sexual Harassment Cases Revealed

Rep. Speier: Sexual harassment continues on Capitol Hill because people get away with it

Rep. Jackie Speier: Two Sitting Members Of Congress Have Engaged In Sexual Harassment

Mary Bono shares story of sexual harassment in Congress

US lawmakers discuss sexual harassment in Congress

Sexual Harassment In Congress? “Me Too” Act To Overhaul The Way Harassment Claims Are Handled

Mark Levin: Republican leaders must resign over sexual harassment in Congress (November 14 2017)

Lawmaker Says Sexual Harassment Is ‘Routine’ At The Capitol

Have You Ever Met a Monster? | Amy Herdy | TEDxSanJuanIsland

Wait, What? George H.W. Bush Sexual Assault Allegations

Shout Animal House

Tony Robbins Identifies 4 Types of Love | Oprah’s Life Class | Oprah Winfrey Network

Creating extraordinary intimacy in a shutdown world | Michael J. Russer | TEDxUniversityofNevada

TEDxJaffa — Niveen Rizkalla — Getting Intimate with Intimacy

Mork & Mindy (1978-1982)

Published on Nov 15, 2015

Mork & Mindy was the first tv show to display an incredible talent of Robin Williams. The audience instantly fell in love with the “cute and cuddly” alien Mork and his human friend Mindy. I think of this show with great fondness because it’s extremely funny, lovely and kind. It’s the kind of TV product we really need these days. It was a huge hit back in the day and i think the people in 2015 could really use a little happiness it gives. Anyway, here’s a little video, i hope you gonna like it! Song: Walk The Moon – Shut Up and Dance

The Love Story of Mork & Mindy

Mork & Mindy – Never Thought That I Could Love

Mork & Mindy – Getting To Know You

Mork and Mindy – Dance With Me

Bing Crosby – Getting To Know You

Getting to Know You from The King and I

Yul Brynner and Deborah Kerr perform “Shall We Dance” from The King and I

Julie Andrews – Getting to Know You

Getting to Know You
It’s a very ancient saying
But a true and honest thought
That if you become a teacher
By your pupils you’ll be taught
As a teacher I’ve been learning
You’ll forgive me if I boast
And I’ve now become an expert
On the subject I like most
Getting to know you
Getting to know you
Getting to know all about you
Getting to like you
Getting to hope you like me
Getting to know you
Putting it my way
But nicely
You are precisely
My cup of tea
Getting to know you
Getting to know all about you
Getting to like you
Getting to hope you like me
Getting to know you
Putting it my way
But nicely
You are precisely
My cup of tea
Getting to know you
Getting to feel free and easy
When I am with you
Getting to know what to say
Haven’t you noticed
Suddenly I’m bright and breezy?
Because of all the beautiful and new
Things I’m learning about you
Day by day
Getting to know you
Getting to feel free and easy
When I am with you
Getting to know what to say
Haven’t you noticed
Suddenly I’m bright and breezy?
Because of all the beautiful and new
Things I’m learning about you
Day by day
Songwriters: Oscar Ii Hammerstein / Richard Rodgers
Getting to Know You lyrics © Imagem Music Inc

The Four Faces of Intimacy

By Beverley Golden

December 16, 2011Health, Healthy Living, Living

Intimacy among animals

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It started with what seemed like a simple question I asked myself. That question, not surprisingly for anyone who knows me, led to a series of additional questions. Somehow, I wasn’t getting clear answers for myself, so I started asking people I came in contact with the same questions. The results were fascinating to me and I wanted to explore the topic more fully. The basic question: “What does intimacy mean to you?

The range of responses was wide and varied. I included both men and women, different ages, some were in relationships and others were not. Most people had to stop for a moment to really think about and put into words what intimacy meant to them. As I looked more deeply at the topic, I found that there are in fact four key types of intimacy.

What Does Intimacy Mean to You?

The people I asked generally started with the most common of the four types of intimacy: Sexual. This wasn’t too much of a surprise because sexual intimacy is probably the most stereotypical and most familiar definition of the word in modern society. Having sex, however, often has less to do with intimacy than with a physical act between people. As it ended up, the people I talked to wanted more than just the act of sex — they wanted some depth. They wanted to feel safe while being vulnerable, wanting to be seen by his/her partner. That made sense, as this form of intimacy also includes a wide range of sensuous activity and sensual expression, so it’s much more than having intercourse.

It’s interesting that the word intercourse is also defined as an “exchange especially of thoughts or feelings.” It’s curious why intimacy is challenging to people in their relationships. I continued to look further.

Connecting Emotionally

The next of the four faces of intimacy is emotional intimacy.This happens when two people feel comfortable sharing their feelings with each other. The goal is to try to be aware and understand the other person’s emotional side. My guess is that women have an easier time with this in very close female friendships, but I’d like to believe that men too are becoming more comfortable experiencing emotional intimacy. This form of intimacy I’ve become comfortable with and see as a healthy part of the give-and-take in all relationships, whether female or male.

Margaret Paul, Ph.D, refers to the fears people have in relation to emotional intimacy. She says, “Many people have two major fears that may cause them to avoid intimacy: the fear of rejection (of losing the other person), and the fear of engulfment (of being invaded, controlled, and losing oneself).” This made some sense to me.

Love and Intimacy

However, if we believe that there are only two major energies we humans experience, love and fear (or an absence of love), then I find it interesting that in this area of intimacy, it seems people have moved from their hearts and love to an energy that stops them from experiencing their true essence and what they often yearn for the most. Love and intimacy.

In her book A Return to Love, the brilliant Marianne Williamson says it most eloquently:

“Love is what we were born with. Fear is what we have learned here. The spiritual journey is the relinquishment or unlearning of fear and the acceptance of love back into our hearts. Love is our ultimate reality and our purpose on earth. To be consciously aware of it, to experience love in ourselves and others, is the meaning of life.”

Even the Bible says, “There is no fear where love exists.” Of course I believe that love and intimacy are highly spiritual. In her book Love for No Reason, Marci Shimoff states, “Love for no reason is your natural state.” She also tells a wonderful story about a spiritual teacher who once said to her, “I love you and it’s no concern of yours.” To love, from your heart, just to love. As I talked about in my piece on what makes a good relationship, my ideal is definitely a loving spiritual partnership.

True Intimacy

I kept wondering if true intimacy could be as simple as a matter of moving back to loving ourselves first? To rediscovering the unconditional love we all were born with? The idea of self-intimacy and self-love is a fascinating concept. I’ll leave these as open-ended questions for you to ask yourselves for now. I was curious to look more closely at the other two types of intimacy.Intellectual Intimacy_conversation between men

 

The next, intellectual intimacy, is something I personally have the most comfort with. This one is about communication, and as someone who lives and breathes words, it’s extremely familiar to me. The ability to share ideas in an open and comfortable way can lead to a very intimate relationship indeed, as I’m fortunate to discover quite frequently. As someone who engages in this type of interaction all the time, it offers me a wonderful and fulfilling form of intimacy. I wondered if this was my strongest area of intimacy.

Experiential Intimacy

The fourth kind of intimacy is experiential intimacy, an intimacy of activity. I realized I experience this every time I get together with a group to create art in a silent process. It’s about letting the art unfold, by working together in co-operation. The essence of this intimate activity is that very little is said to each other, it’s not a verbal sharing of thoughts or feelings, but it’s more about involving yourself in the activity and feeling an intimacy from this involvement.

During a recent encounter I had at a contact improv jam, I realized was actually this form of intimacy. I interacted with a young man, letting our body energy lead the dance, with no eye contact and no words, just movement in a sensual and open, if not dramatic, dance. So, I understood that this experiential intimacy is also, somewhat surprisingly, in my intimacy vocabulary.Intimacy_experiential

 Joining and Separating

Rick Hanson, Ph.D says that having intimacy in our lives requires a natural balance of two great themes — joining and separation — that are in fact central to human life. Almost everyone wants both of them, to varying degrees. He goes on to say, “In other words: individuality and relationship, autonomy and intimacy, separation and joining support each other. They are often seen at odds with each other, but this is so not the case!” This also made perfect sense to me. Yin and yang. Light and dark. All the polarities we live in life, lead to a balance.

My understanding and curiosity were greatly expanded after exploring the four faces of intimacy. Maybe this awareness might make it easier to find your own perfect personal balance between them all. For me, it comes down to our willingness to explore intimacy in all its forms. It’s not necessary that every intimate relationship includes all the different types of intimacy. Ultimately it is each individual’s choice.

What I learned, makes me believe that with some balance in these areas, we might find a deeper connection and understanding of the relationships in our life. I also fully recognize that we all have different definitions of intimacy. Are men and women’s definitions dramatically different? It is a fascinating conversation to continue to explore.

Soul Intimacy

Then, as often happens with perfect synchronicity, I received my daily Gaping Void email by Hugh MacLeod with the subject: Has your soul been seen lately? It went on to say, “I saw your soul today and it made me want to cry with joy and thanks.” The topic was intimacy. What followed was a beautiful way to end my piece.

“Intimacy isn’t strictly about romantic relationships, or even relations with family — sometimes it happens quickly, and often times in ways we hardly notice.

I’m talking about that moment when someone allows the world to see what’s inside… what they are really about. It’s about seeing someone for who and what they are and that the glimpse was offered either voluntarily or without the person’s knowledge. This is an incredible moment where our existence suddenly makes sense and all comes together in a singular place.

For those of you who have experienced this, it’s something that never gets lost in memory or time. It’s like a little mirror we take out every now and then to remember a time when something so complex became so inconceivably simple. It’s pretty incredible.”

This is the essence of what intimacy is really all about. Dare to be vulnerable, dare to be seen.

Intimacy is Key to Being Healthy and Vital

Dr. Christiane Northrup in her newest book “Goddesses Never Age”, tells us that intimacy is an important part of life regardless of age. As she shares, “Age is just a number, and agelessness means not buying into the idea that a number determines everything from your state of health to your attractiveness to your value.” As a member of Team Northrup, a team whose mission is to support people to live their most vital and healthy lives, I invite you to a complimentary health and vitality consultation.

Before we talk to customize a plan for you, find out how healthy you are with the True Health Assessment. The three-part report, identifies your top health risk factors, maps out a recommended lifestyle plan that identifies ways you can improve your health and provides you with individualized nutrition recommendations based on your specific assessment answers.

Now let me ask you my starting question: What does intimacy mean to you?

https://www.beverleygolden.com/the-four-faces-of-intimacy/

 

Rep. Jackie Speier claims $15million in taxpayer money has been used to settle sexual harassment claims against members of Congress in the past 10 to 15 years

  • Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA) says $15m in taxpayer money has been used to settle sexual harassment claims against Congressmen in the past 10 to 15 years
  • Speier says she doesn’t know how many Congressmen benefited from the taxpayer bail out to protect their reputations 
  • However, she claims there were two accused sexual harassers currently serving in Congress – a Republican and a Democrat 
  • Speier doesn’t think they will ever be named since they signed non-disclosure agreements with their accusers
  • The Congresswoman is leading an effort to change the policy so that accused Congressmen pay for settlements with their own money   

California Rep. Jackie Speier says that $15million in taxpayer money has been used to settle sexual harassment claims against members of Congress in the past 10 to 15 years.

The Democrat made the stunning revelation in an interview on Meet the Press Tuesday night.

Speier says she doesn’t know how many members of Congress were given hush money to settle their suits in private and protect their reputations.

She previously said that two current members of Congress were the subject of sexual harassment claims – including one Republican and one Democrat.

One of those two Congressmen had their settlement paid with money from the U.S. Treasury.

Speier is leading a campaign to change Congress’ policy of paying settlements. In the future, she wants accused Congressmen to use their own money to settle their own lawsuits.

As to whether we’ll ever know about the two current Congressmen accused of sexual harassment, Speier says she thinks it’s too late to name them, since both they and their accusers signed non-disclosure agreements.

Scroll down for video 

California Rep. Jackie Speier (D) says that $15million in taxpayer money has been used to settle sexual harassment claims against members of Congress in the past 10 to 15 years

California Rep. Jackie Speier (D) says that $15million in taxpayer money has been used to settle sexual harassment claims against members of Congress in the past 10 to 15 years

Speier took part in a House hearing on Tuesday, detailing incidents of sexual misconduct involving current lawmakers and how to prevent such abuse.

Rep. Barbara Comstock, R-Va., said she was recently told about a staffer who quit her job after a lawmaker asked her to bring work material to his house, then exposed himself.

‘That kind of situation, what are we doing here for women, right now, who are dealing with someone like that?’ Comstock asked. Comstock said there should be clear-cut rules about the kinds of relationships and behaviors that are off-limits and create a hostile work environment.

In this March 28, 2017, file photo, Rep. Barbara Comstock, R-Va., walks at the Capitol, in Washington. Amid a daily deluge of stories about harassment in the workplace, female members of Congress detailed incidents of sexual misconduct involving current lawmakers at a House hearing on how to prevent such abuse

Comstock said the name of the lawmaker she mentioned wasn’t disclosed to her, but emphasized that naming names is an important step in promoting accountability and encouraging victims to come forward.

The Democrat from California recently introduced legislation to make training to prevent sexual harassment mandatory for members of Congress after sharing her own story of being sexually assaulted by a male chief of staff. Her bill also includes a survey of the current situation in Congress and an overhaul of the processes by which members and staffers file harassment complaints.

The bill has gained support from both Democratic and Republican lawmakers.

Rep. Barbara Comstock, R-Va., said she was recently told about a staffer who quit her job after a lawmaker asked her to bring work material to his house, then exposed himself

Rep. Barbara Comstock, R-Va., said she was recently told about a staffer who quit her job after a lawmaker asked her to bring work material to his house, then exposed himself

Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA) testifies before the House Administration Committee in the Longworth House Office Building on Capitol Hill November 14, 2017 in Washington, DC 

Rep. Gregg Harper, R-Miss., who chairs the House Administration Committee, said in his opening remarks, ‘I believe we need mandatory training, and probably everyone here would agree.’

Speier is planning to introduce a second bill this week that seeks to create greater transparency by listing offices that have complaints and their outcomes, as well as the monetary amount for all settlements. Additionally, the bill will move to address mandatory non-disclosure agreements attached to mediation.

House Administration Committee Chairman Gregg Harper (R-MS) (C) prepares for a hearing in the Longworth House Office Building on Capitol Hill November 14, 2017 in Washington, DC

Republican Representative from Alabama Bradley Byrne speaks during a House Administration Committee hearing on "Preventing Sexual Harassment in the Congressional Workplace" on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, on November 14, 2017 as Democratic Representative from California Jackie Speier looks on

'Not being a flirt and not being a bitch. That was my rule, to try to walk that fine line,' says Bono, who has brought up inappropriate conduct she has received on the House floor

One Republican lawmaker, Rodney Davis of Illinois, said addressing the issue of sexual harassment on the Hill is ‘long overdue’ and that Congress must ‘lead by example.’ But he expressed concern that the increasing focus on gender hostility in the workplace could create unintended consequences, including ‘that some offices may just take a short cut and not hire women as a way to avoid these issues.’

Gloria Lett, counsel for the Office of House Employment Counsel, replied that such discrimination is illegal.

Both chambers of Congress have recently sprung into action to try to address accounts of sexual misconduct on the Hill.

With each passing day, new revelations of sexual misconduct continue to rock the political sphere. Alabama’s Republican nominee for Senate has come under fire after several women have come forward with accounts of sexually inappropriate behavior or, in at least one case, assault, at Moore’s hand when they were teenagers. In the wake of the allegations, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., House Speaker Paul Ryan and other Republicans have said Moore should step aside. One Republican has suggested that if elected, Moore should be expelled from the Senate.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5085129/Congress-sex-harassment-claims-settled-tax-money.html#ixzz4yk9cTeH9

 

Mork & Mindy

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Mork & Mindy
Mork & Mindy.jpg

First season title card
Genre
Created by
Starring
Theme music composer Perry Botkin, Jr.
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 4
No. of episodes
  • 91 (original run)
  • 95 (syndication)

(list of episodes)

Production
Executive producer(s)
  • Antony W. Marshall
  • Garry Marshall
Producer(s)
  • Bruce Johnson
  • Brian Levant
  • Dale McRaven
  • Ed Scharlach
  • Tom Tenowich
Camera setup Multi-camera
Running time 22–24 minutes
Production company(s)
Distributor CBS Television Distribution
Release
Original network ABC
Audio format Monaural
Original release September 14, 1978 – May 27, 1982
Chronology
Preceded by
Related shows

Mork & Mindy is an American sitcom and a spin-off of Happy Days that aired on ABC from September 14, 1978 to May 27, 1982. It stars Robin Williams as Mork, an extraterrestrial who comes to Earth from the planet Ork in a small, one-Orkan egg-shaped spaceship. Pam Dawber co-stars as Mindy McConnell, his human friend and roommate, and later his wife and the mother of his child.

Season Episodes Originally aired Nielsen ratings[1]
First aired Last aired Rank Rating
1 25 September 14, 1978 May 10, 1979 3 28.6
(Tied with Happy Days)
2 26 September 16, 1979 May 1, 1980 27 20.2
3 22 November 13, 1980 May 14, 1981 N/A N/A
4 22 October 8, 1981 May 27, 1982 N/A N/A

Premise and initial success

The character of Mork was played by a then-unknown Robin Williams, who impressed producer Garry Marshall with his quirky comedic ability as soon as they met. When Williams was asked to take a seat at the audition, Williams immediately sat on his head on the chair and Marshall cast him on the spot, and later wryly commented that Williams was the only alien who auditioned for the role.[2]

Mork appears in the Happy Days season five episode, “My Favorite Orkan“, which first aired in February 1978 and is a take on the 1960s sitcom My Favorite Martian. Williams’ character, Mork, attempts to take Richie Cunningham back to his planet of Ork as a human specimen, but his plan is foiled by Fonzie. In the initial broadcast of this episode, it all turned out to be a dream that Richie had, but when Mork proved so popular, the ending was re-edited to show Mork erasing the experience from everyone’s minds, thus meaning the event had actually happened and was not a dream.[citation needed]

Mork & Mindy, is set in BoulderColorado, in the then present-day late 1970s and early 1980s (as opposed to the Happy Days setting of Milwaukee in the late-1950s). Mork explains to Richie that he is from the “future” — the 1970s.

Mork arrives on Earth in an egg-shaped spacecraft. He has been assigned to observe human behavior by Orson, his mostly unseen and long-suffering superior (voiced by Ralph James). Orson has sent Mork to get him off Ork, where humor is not permitted. Attempting to fit in, Mork dresses in an Earth suit, but wears it backward. Landing in Boulder, Colorado, he encounters 21-year-old Mindy (Pam Dawber), who is upset after an argument with her boyfriend, and offers assistance. Because of his odd garb, she mistakes him for a priest and is taken in by his willingness to listen (in fact, simply observing her behavior). When Mindy notices his backward suit and unconventional behavior, she asks who he really is, and he innocently tells her the truth. She promises to keep his identity a secret and allows him to move into her attic. Mindy’s father Fred (Conrad Janis) objects to his daughter living with a man (particularly one as bizarre as Mork), but Fred’s mother-in-law Cora (Elizabeth Kerr) approves of Mork and the living arrangement. Mindy and Cora work at Fred’s music store, where Cora gives violin lessons to Eugene (Jeffrey Jacquet), a 10-year-old boy who becomes Mork’s friend. Also seen occasionally are Mindy’s snooty old high school friend Susan (Morgan Fairchild) and the possibly insane Exidor (Robert Donner).

Storylines usually center on Mork’s attempts to understand human behavior and American culture as Mindy helps him to adjust to life on Earth. It usually ends up frustrating Mindy, as Mork can only do things according to Orkan customs. For example, lying to someone or not informing them it will rain, is considered a practical joke (called “splinking”) on Ork. At the end of each episode, Mork reports back to Orson on what he has learned about Earth. These end-of-show summaries allow Mork to humorously comment on social norms.

Mork’s greeting is “Na-Nu Na-Nu” (pronounced /ˈnɑːn ˈnɑːn/) along with a hand gesture similar to Mr. Spock‘s Vulcan salute from Star Trek combined with a handshake. It became a popular catchphrase at the time, as did “Shazbot” (/ˈʃæzbɒt/), an Orkan profanity that Mork uses.[citation needed] Mork says “KO” in place of “OK”.

This series is Robin Williams’ first major acting role and became famous for Williams’ use of his manic improvisational comedic talent. Williams made up so many jokes during filming, eventually scripts had specific gaps where Williams was allowed to freely perform. Pam Dawber found him so funny that she had to bite her lip in many scenes to avoid breaking up in laughter and ruining the take, often a difficult task with Williams’s talent.[citation needed]

The series was extremely popular in its first season. The Nielsen ratings were very high, ranking at 3, behind Laverne & Shirley (at 1) and Three’s Company (at 2), both on ABC, which was the highest-rated network in the U.S. in 1978. The show gained higher ratings than the Happy Days series that had spawned it, at 4.[3][4] However, the network management sought to improve the show in several ways. This was done in conjunction with what is known in the industry as counterprogramming, a technique in which a successful show is moved opposite a ratings hit on another network. The show was moved from Thursdays, where it outrated CBS‘ The Waltons, to Sundays where it replaced the canceled sci-fi series Battlestar Galactica. The show then aired against two highly rated shows: NBC‘s anthology series titled The Sunday Big Event and CBS‘ revamped continuation of All in the Family titled Archie Bunker’s Place.[3]

Second season

The second season saw an attempt to seek younger viewers and premiered a new disco arrangement of the gentle theme tune.

The characters of Fred and Cora were dropped from the regular cast. It was explained that Fred went on tour as a conductor with an orchestra, taking Cora with him. Fred and Cora made return appearances in later episodes. Recurring characters Susan and Eugene made no further appearances after season one and were never mentioned again.

New cast members were added. Among the new supporting characters were Remo and Jeanie DaVinci (Jay Thomas and Gina Hecht), a brother and sister from New York City who owned a new neighborhood deli where Mork and Mindy now spent a lot of time. Also added as regulars were their grumpy neighbor Mr. Bickley (who was seen occasionally in the first season and ironically worked as a verse writer for a greeting-card company), portrayed by Tom Poston, and Nelson Flavor (Jim Staahl), Mindy’s snooty cousin who ran for city council.

The show’s main focus was no longer on Mork’s slapstick attempts to adjust to the new world he was in, but on the relationship between Mork and Mindy on a romantic level. Also, some of the focus was on Mork trying to find a steady-paying job.

Because of the abrupt changes to the show and time slot, ratings slipped dramatically (from 3 to 27). The show was quickly moved back to its previous timeslot and efforts were made to return to the core of the series; however, ratings did not recover.

Third season

For the third season, Jeanie, Remo, and Nelson were retained as regulars with Jeanie and Remo having opened a restaurant. Nelson was no longer into politics and wore more casual clothes.

Mindy’s father and grandmother returned to the series. The show acknowledged this attempt to restore its original premise, with the third season’s hour-long opener titled “Putting The Ork Back in Mork”.

Several new supporting characters were added to the lineup. Joining were two children from the day-care center where Mork worked named Lola and Stephanie. Also added was Mindy’s close friend Glenda Faye Comstock (Crissy Wilzak), a lovely young widow whom Nelson falls for. Wilzak lasted one season as a regular.

When these ideas failed to improve ratings, many wilder ideas were tried to attempt to capitalize on Williams’ comedic talents. The season ended at number 49 in the ratings.

Fourth season

Despite the show’s steady decline, ABC agreed to a fourth season of Mork & Mindy, but executives wanted changes. The show began to include special guest stars this year.

In the fourth season, Mork and Mindy were married. Jonathan Winters, one of Williams’ idols, was brought in as their child, Mearth. Because of the different Orkan physiology, Mork laid an egg, which grew and hatched into the much older Winters.[5] Winters had previously appeared in a season 3 episode as Dave McConnell (Mindy’s uncle and Fred’s brother). It had been previously explained that Orkans aged “backwards”, thus explaining Mearth’s appearance and that of his teacher, Miss Geezba (portrayed by then-11-year-old actress Louanne Sirota). After four seasons and 95 episodes, Mork & Mindy was canceled in the summer of 1982. The show ended at 60th place at season’s end.

Characters

  • Mork (Robin Williams) — An alien from the planet Ork sent to observe human behavior. Mork mentions many times that Orkan scientists grew him in a test-tube.
  • Mindy McConnell (Pam Dawber) — A pretty female human who finds Mork and teaches him about human behavior. Eventually falls in love, marries Mork and raises an Orkan “child”.
  • Fred McConnell (Conrad Janis) — Mindy’s father, a widower with conservative values. In the first season, Fred owned a music shop with Cora. In the third season, Fred became the conductor of the Boulder Symphony Orchestra.
  • Grandma Cora Hudson[6] (Elizabeth Kerr) — Mindy’s less-conservative, progressive grandmother and Fred’s mother-in-law.
  • Franklin Delano Bickley (Tom Poston) — Mindy’s downstairs neighbor. He has a job involving writing out greeting cards. At first, he is a total grump and always complains about noise. In time, however, he warms up and becomes a friend to Mork and Mindy and the gang.
  • Mearth (Jonathan Winters) — The “child” of Mork and Mindy and godson of Orson. Because of Orkan physiology, Orkans age backwards, starting with elderly adult bodies but with the mind of a child and regressing to feeble “old” kids.
  • Remo DaVinci (Jay Thomas) — The brother of Jeanie DaVinci co-owner of The New York Delicatessen in season 2 and DaVinci’s Restaurant in season 3.
  • Jeanie DaVinci (Gina Hecht) — The sister of Remo DaVinci and co-owner of The New York Delicatessen in season 2 and DaVinci’s Restaurant in season 3.
  • Nelson Flavor (Jim Staahl) — The strait-laced, driven, yet aloof cousin of Mindy with dreams of political power.
  • Orson (voiced by Ralph James) — Mork’s mostly unseen and long-suffering superior who has sent Mork to Earth to get him off-world because humor is not permitted on Ork.

Recurring characters

  • Susan Taylor (Morgan Fairchild) — Mindy’s snooty ex-friend from high school who was only seen in Season 1. In the episode “Mork’s First Christmas”, a glimpse into why Susan is such a shallow person was shown.
  • Exidor (Robert Donner)—An odd man (with possible mental illness) who regards himself as a prophet. He often appears wearing a flowing white robe with a brown sash. He recognizes Mork as an alien, but nobody believes him. As the leader of a cult called “The Friends of Venus“, of which he was the only member, he regularly engaged in conversations with imaginary members of his cult (such as “Pepe” and “Rocco”), but was the only person who could see them. Most times he is found yelling at his imaginary cult. He makes the comment, “Entourages can be the pits!” Later, since the Venusians had abandoned him, he began to worship O.J. Simpson when Mork encountered him at the Boulder Police Station. He also had a plan to become “Emperor of the Universe” by becoming a rock-star; his musical instrument of choice was the accordion. Exidor appears to be something of a squatter, as on at least two separate occasions he is present in homes not his own. Once Mork visited Exidor at a very nice apartment where he supposedly lived with his imaginary girlfriend and her twin sister. Another time, he is “on vacation” in Mindy’s family home, where he apparently believed there was a beach in the living room closet. (“Everybody out of the water! Can’t you see that fin?”) He eventually got married, in a “forest” (Mindy’s attic). Mindy thought his wife would be imaginary, but she turned out to be a real woman named Ambrosia. Exidor became highly popular with audiences and prompted wild applause from the studio audience when entering a scene.
  • Mr. Miles Sternhagen (Foster Brooks) — Mindy’s boss when she gets a job at a local TV station. He is overbearing and demanding of Mindy when sober, but occasionally turns up drunk and cheerful (per Brooks’ famous “drunk” act).
  • Glenda Faye Comstock (Crissy Wilzak) — Mindy’s friend and recent widow who becomes the love interest of Nelson and was only seen in Season 3.
  • Todd Norman “TNT” Taylor (Bill Kirchenbauer) — An obnoxious and arrogant womanizer. He later teaches Mork to drive at the FastLane Driving School.
  • Cathy McConnell (Shelley Fabares) — Fred’s n