November 15, 2016


Insiders describe 'knife fight' over Trump cabinet picks (AFP November 15, 2016)

Making the vital choices for President-elect Donald Trump's White House cabinet has sparked intense infighting, CNN reported Monday, with one source calling it a "knife fight."

The jobs to be filled include national security positions and West Wing posts, the television news network said, as Trump gathered with transition team members in New York.

"The disagreements highlight the dilemma faced by Trump, who is now torn between a campaign promise to shake up Washington and the need to build a national security team with policy experience," the report said.

Among those mentioned as possible secretary of state are hawkish former diplomat John Bolton and former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani.

Trump May Name Iraq War Propagandist John Bolton As Top US Diplomat (Joe Conason, November 15, 2016, National Memo)

The dark comedy that will all too soon officially become the Trump administration is still in previews, but already we're learning that the cosmic joke is on every American who believed whatever the man we must call "president-elect" said. That beautiful big border wall?  It's probably going to be a fence. Those 11 million deportations? That number has been cut by about 80 percent, down to roughly what the Obama administration is doing to rid the country of non-citizen criminals now. Draining that Washington swamp of reptilian lobbyists? They're in charge of his transition.

And did you believe Donald Trump's claim that he was against the war in Iraq, as he falsely claimed over and over again? Did you assume that he opposed the neoconservative policies of the Bush administration? Did you think he would be more cautious about foreign intervention than Hillary Clinton, as Trump promised when he blamed her for misadventures in Iraq, Libya, and Syria?

During the past year plenty of crackpots, on the left as well as the right, declared a preference for Trump over the "globalist" Clinton on national security and foreign policy issues, citing her Iraq war vote and her vaguely hawkish demeanor. But that brand of analysis was exposed as pitifully naïve on Nov. 14, as credible rumors began to circulate that one of the top two candidates for Secretary of State is John Bolton, who served as UN ambassador during the George W. Bush administration.

Yes, that's the same John Bolton who demanded last year that the United States bomb Iran.

Trump probably won't much reverse the current clean energy policies (Tyler Cowen on November 15, 2016, Marginal Revolution)

The reality is that clean energy has been booming in the United States for a whole bunch of reasons that don't have much to do with climate change. Things such as health, security and innovation, which lead to high levels of support amongst Republicans - yes, Republicans - for harnessing the power of American water, wind and sun.

Those federal tax credits for wind and solar? They were passed last December by a Republican Congress with bipartisan support. Revoking them would require a legislative effort that may not be looked upon kindly by the many Republican lawmakers who have renewable energy manufacturing and development in their states. Lawmakers like Senator Chuck Grassley, an Iowa Republican, who said this summer: "If he wants to do away with it, he'll have to get a bill through Congress, and he'll do it over my dead body." He won't be the only one: looking across the country - and the electoral map - the top-10 wind-energy producing congressional districts are represented by Republicans.

Besides, much of the renewable energy boom has been driven by state policy. 

Posted by at November 15, 2016 4:43 AM


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