I happen to be one of the minority of policy analysts who finds that there is some benefit for Donald…
I happen to be one of the minority of policy analysts who finds that there is some benefit for Donald Trump’s argument that the Fed is a little too keen to raise interest rates and if he ever wants to call me, I could walk him through some arguments in favor of this position . This way he can next time ask this by journalists that he can say something that makes sense.
Instead, Trump instead spoke to Phil Rucker and Josh Dawsey in Washington Post in an interview published Tuesday: “I’m not happy with Fed. They make a mistake because I have a bowel and my bowel tells me more than anyone Annans brain can ever tell me. “
This is more or less a Stephen Colbert comedy routine that satirizes George W. Bush, which in turn is a reminder that reality has basically surpassed satire in the Trump era.
The whole interview is filled with statements that are bizarre (“oceans are small”), nonsense (“we lose $ 800 billion a year on trade”) or so incoherently that when he comes out and just tells a lie that used to be the many articles that worried about global freezing) it almost comes as a relief.
Providing unsafe actual claims to support a political position backed by fossil fuel interests is a refreshing banal way of implementing policies compared to some of the madness in progress.
Of course, the historical roots of the American Saudi Alliance lie in the geopolitical sense of Saudi oil reserves, and that has often led US officials over the years to fail Saudi Arabian misconduct for the human rights. Today, with the US oil production rising, this aspect of the relationship is less relevant than ever been. Yet, Trump is everything but chanting “blood for oil!” As his battle cries when asked about the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi:
RUCKER: And why have you taken [Mohammed bin Salman’s] names to order the killing of our colleague Jamal Khashoggi –
TRUMP: I have not taken anything.
RUCKER: – Over the evidence that the intelligence community has gathered?
TRUMP: Phil, I have not done that. If you look at my statement, maybe he did and maybe he did not. But he denies it. And people around him deny it. And the CIA did not say in a confirmed way, he did, by the way. I’m not saying they say he did not, but they did not say that confirming. I say this: We have $ 52-a-barrel oil right now and I called them three months ago, before all this happened to Khashoggi, and I let him get it about oil. We were up to $ 82 – probably two and a half months ago – we were up to $ 82 a barrel and it went up to $ 100 and it would have been like a massive tax increase and I did not want it. And I called them and they let the oil start flowing and we’re 52 dollars.
This is about Saudi and oil sales. They sell oil on the global market because they get money in exchange. It’s not a service they do for us, and we do not have to kiss their ass to make them sell oil. People disagree with the appropriate US policy against Venezuela, but everyone understands that we do not have to say good things about Maduro to ask him to keep the oil running – he needs to keep the oil floating because he needs the money.
But Trump is so in Saudi’s house that he thinks Saudi is serving us when they sell us oil and do us another favor when buying our military equipment.
We have an allied investing billions and billions of dollars in our country. They can very easily invest $ 110 billion, $ 450 billion in total over a period of time, quite a short time. $ 110 billion in the military. Russia and China would love to have these orders and they will get them if we do not. They have no choice but they will get them if we do not. So I take everything into account, and he completely denies it, and denied it on three occasions, on three different conversations, and many other people deny it too. Did he do it? As I said maybe he did and maybe he did not, but in the meanwhile Saudi Arabia is spending millions and billions of dollars in the United States, and I want them to spend this.
Many observers have pointed out earlier weeks to the extraordinary madness of this calculation that it is okay for Saudi people to kill a US citizen who is a father to American citizens because the Saudi people give us money.
But it’s also just incredibly foamy economy.
Trump answers a question as to whether it is appropriate for him to blame the Fed for the GM Announces announced this week:
And I’m not blaming anyone, but I’m just saying I think that Fed is far from the base of what they do, number one. Number two, a positive note, we are doing good business, we are doing well – our business is very strong. Do not forget we’re still up when I came in 38 percent or something. You know, it’s huge – it’s not like we’re up – and we’re much stronger. And we are much more fluid. And the banks are now much more fluid during my service. And I do not – I do not play the same rules as Obama. Obama had no interest in worrying; We pay interest, a lot of interest. He did not pay down – we talk about $ 50 billion a lot of different times, pay down and turn off liquidity. Yes, Obama did not. And just so you understand, I’m playing a normalization economics while playing a free economy. It’s easy to make money when you do not pay any interest. It’s easy to make money when you do not make any cuts, so you can not – and despite that, the numbers we have phenomenal.
I have basically no idea what Trump is talking about here and I’m pretty sure he’s not either.
Among other things, the idea is that the goal of federal policy should be to “make money” is so childish that it is hardly worth discussing. Whole word salad seems to be a complicated network of misunderstandings arising from the central premise. The good news is that it is not clear that Trump can actually do any harm here.
If Trump causes massive, ongoing damage is in its efforts to undermine both national and global efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Trump is an unusual figure in many ways, and deviates from the standard GOP procedure on a number of subjects.
Yet embarrasing for Republicans, a subject on which this is not true is climate change where his views, but patently ridiculous, are uniformly embraced by his party. Here he explains why he does not agree with the political scientists about the issue:
One of the problems many people like to myself – we have very high levels of intelligence, but we are not necessarily such believers. You look at our air and our water and it is currently on a record wash. But when you look at China and look at parts of Asia and when you look at South America, and when you look at many other places in this world, including Russia, including – just a lot of other places – the air is incredibly dirty. And when you talk about an atmosphere, the oceans are very small. And it blows over and it sails over. I mean that we are taking thousands of tons of trash from our beaches all the time coming from Asia. It just flows down the Pacific Ocean, it flows, and we say where is this from. And it takes many people to start with.
This is true enough as far as it goes. Air pollution is a global problem, and while the United States is a major contributor to climate pollution, we are not the only guilty or necessarily the greatest sinner. The international cooperation problem is difficult to solve, but nothing in this response also starts in a remote way justifying his administration’s policy course to do less than nothing to reduce emissions.
Instead of trying to justify its approach, Trump simply stops offering the theory that fires are not caused by hot dry weather but by straightness:
Josh, you go to other places where they have denser trees – It is denser, where the trees are more flammable – they do not have forest fires like this, because they maintain. And it was very interesting, I looked at the firefighters and they are raking brush – you know tumbleweed and brush and all these things that grow underneath. It’s on fire and they’re raking it works so hard, and they’re raking all these things. If it was raked in the beginning, there would be no fire. It is very interesting to see. Many of the trees, they took huge burns at the bottom, but they did not go on fire. The bottom is all burnt but they did not fire because they said the water, they are wet. You need forest management, and they do not.
In a previous iteration of this argument, Trump specifically said that it was Finland where they downloaded fire from forest fires which urged everyone from the Finnish President to down to explain that’s not how it works. Instead, Finland is generally much colder and wet than the Western United States (there are not many fire problems in cold, wet New England either) that helps keep fires under control. But climate change makes the American West even warmer and drier. That’s the whole point.
The Congress Republicans, of course, support Trump, not despite these loopy views on environmental regulation but because of them – views that have become dogma throughout their party.
What they consider is the installation of intellectual lightweight and small-scale artist Matthew Whitaker to run the Justice Department.
RUCKER: I know we’re short on time, but we’d just love to get your thoughts on the attorney’s lawyer Matt Whitaker over at the justice department.
TRUMP: He’s a nice person.
RUCKER: Has he been fully informed about the Mueller investigation, the status of it?
TRUMP: I do not know.
RUCKER: And did he talk to you about it?
TRUMP: I can tell that Matt Whitaker is a respected man. He does an excellent job. We are looking at potential attorneys right now. And within – I will say, within the justice department he is a highly respected person, and he does a very good job. I also think he is a very good person. I think he is a very good person. And he had the reputation of being, I think he was six years old in Iowa as a US lawyer. He had a reputation for being very strong, very smart, very good.
Of course, there is absolutely no emergency that required an interim meeting at DOJ without a replacement lawyer-general secretary. And if there should be a working attorney general director, there is no mortal reason that it should not be No. 2 or 3 or 4 or 5 or number, something that is employed in the Justice Department. There was no reason to choose Whitaker other than the completely unsuitable reason that he is considered more likely to interfere with the Mueller investigation than any other candidate.
However, as a society, we have become immortal in the temporarily inappropriate way Trump leads to and the whole Republican party has adapted to the fact that this is a great way to do the job.
Talking about which, earlier in his discussion about the Saudi situation, is Trump explaining that he does not take Saudi bribe money:
But they have been a great ally. Without them, Israel would be much more difficult. We must have a counterweight to Iran. I know him. I know him well, the crown prince. And by the way, never did business with them, never thinking about doing business with them. I could not care less. This is a very important job I’m doing right now. The last thing I care about is doing business with people. I’m just doing business for us. Someone said yes, maybe they are investors in one of his jobs. The answer is no. But I just feel it is very important to maintain that relationship.
Trump is obviously not prepared to show that his hands are clean by releasing returns or other personal financial information. He just has this huge network of opaque business interests that he has repeatedly broken promises to provide transparency and he just wants us to trust that nothing shady happens. His reasons for wanting to keep everything completely secret is completely over the board.
Trust him. Or trust your bowel.