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Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Schumer Says Trump AGREED To $2T INFRASTRUCTURE Package

Schumer: Trump agreed to $2T infrastructure package at WH meeting

Alex Pappas

Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer said Tuesday that President Trump agreed to support a $2 trillion infrastructure spending package after meeting with him and other Democrats at the White House, though the details are not yet clear.
The president – a real estate developer before he was elected president – has long sought to strike a big infrastructure deal, but has faced some resistance from conservatives in his party over concerns about the country’s rising debt.
Democratic leaders, speaking to reporters outside the White House after meeting with Trump, called the meeting constructive.
“We agreed on a number – which was very, very good. Two trillion dollars for infrastructure. Originally, we started a little lower. Even the president was eager to push it up to two trillion dollars,” Schumer said.
The White House, in a written statement on the meeting, did not mention a dollar figure but called the session "excellent and productive."
"The United States has not come even close to properly investing in infrastructure for many years, foolishly prioritizing the interests of other countries over our own. We have to invest in this country’s future and bring our infrastructure to a level better than it has ever been before," the White House said, adding that the group would meet again in three weeks "to discuss specific proposals and financing methods."
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said there were no decisions on how to pay for the plan.
“We agreed that we would meet again to talk about how it would be paid for,” she said.
Both Schumer and Pelosi said they believe they can strike a deal with Trump on infrastructure, even as congressional Democrats ramp up investigations of the president and subpoena members of his administration in the wake of the release of Special Counsel Robert Mueller's Russia report.
"I believe we can do both at once,” Schumer said, adding they aren’t “mutually exclusive”
“Building infrastructure of America has never been a partisan issue,” Pelosi said, saying Democrats “hope to go forward in a very nonpartisan way for the future.”
Ahead of the session with Democrats, one of the president's economic advisers said the White House would not be going into Tuesday's meeting with a blueprint for an infrastructure bill.
"We're going slowly on this," said Larry Kudlow, director of the president's National Economic Council. "We would like this to be bipartisan. We would like to work with them and come up with something both sides can agree to. It's an important topic."
Questions remain on how such a plan would be funded. The nation's top business groups and labor unions support increasing the federal tax, currently 18.3 cents a gallon since it was last raised in 1993.
Asked whether Trump supports raising the gas tax, White House adviser Kellyanne Conway said: "This president is the guy who lowers taxes."
Conway acknowledged that "there's no question" that infrastructure repairs need to be paid for.
Pelosi and Schumer wrote in a letter to Trump on Monday that an infrastructure package should go beyond addressing roads and bridges and should also include provisions to enhance broadband, water systems, energy, schools and housing.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.


The National Antiracist Book Festival recognizes that it is primarily about anti-black racism. Attendees exuded a mix of fashionable wokeness.

In The Maw Of Wokeness

Ben Domenech

The first thing I saw at the first National Antiracist Book Festival was a white college kid with a disappointing tuft of an attempted goatee wearing a Colin Kaepernick shirt. I thought about telling him that I was sitting on a plane across from Kaepernick a week earlier – I remain a fan of his play style, and have been ever since he was running the spread at Nevada – and was disappointed when the former quarterback whose corporate Nike-backed mantra is “Believe in Something Even If It Means Sacrificing Everything” declined to give a mild-mannered old lady who humbly requested it an autograph. You should never meet your heroes.

The National Antiracist Book Festival is a project of the Antiracist Research and Policy Center at American University, headed by Ibram Xolani Kendi, who describes himself as “hardcore humanist and softcore vegan”. In 2013, he changed his middle name from Henry (Xolani apparently means “Peace” in Zulu) and his last from Rogers (Kendi apparently means “loved one” in Meru). He is an Ideas columnist at The Atlantic, where he compiled a syllabus for Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam, and author of “Stamped From The Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America”, which includes most of them.

According to Kendi’s invitation letter, The National Antiracist Book Festival recognizes that it is primarily about anti-black racism. In its panel schedule, it is exclusively so. In the absence of other knowledge, one could come away from this conference with the perception that there is only one kind of racism, and only one kind of racist – that all crimes of racism are white on black. It began with segments on “the history and persistence of racism in the Christian church”, was bisected by a screening of the film “I Am Not Racist… Am I?”, and ended with Michael Eric Dyson on Jim Crow. You can probably predict everything that came in between.

Attendees exuded a mix of fashionable wokeness. A woman with a Luis Vuitton bag and $800 Gucci sneakers dutifully took notes as DeRay McKesson spoke in his trademark Patagonia puffy vest, deploying a series of lines and catchphrases that seemed less tied to the topic of the panel (“On White Supremacy”) and more about his personal priorities, such as explaining Brett Kavanaugh’s badness to his aunt. “They hid the White House papers, it was bad!”

McKesson talked about circulating at a Hollywood event, and experiencing an unnamed interlocutor questioning his claimed statistic that “white high school dropouts make more than black college graduates.” (The actual statistic is median accumulated wealth, not income, and doesn’t differentiate between graduates and those who attended some college, who presumably face the attendant debt.) McKesson claimed he responded to his questioner by saying: “The only reason you have more white people is you killed off half the other people and enslaved the other half.” Recognizing the shibboleth, the audience clapped.

“White supremacy is a smog, we all inhale it,” McKesson said. It is “a system of domination that infects every area of society.” His message to white folks: “How did you personally work to make all the Band Aids look like you? What did you do for the Homestead Act? … White supremacy is baked into the structure, it’s intentional. People made this up. It was designed.”

In the panel “On Democracy,” a white girl in an H&M jacket wore a shirt with the message “Dream Like Martin Lead Like Harriet Fight Like Malcolm Think Like Garvey Write Like Maya Build Like Madam C.J. Speak Like Frederick Educate Like W.E.B. Believe Like Thurgood Challenge Like Rosa.” She listened as Carol Anderson, Alicia Garza, and Kendi all came to the conclusion that America has never had a democracy, and instead had a government that was, in Kendi’s understanding, “stamped from the beginning to build and maintain the power of white folk.” A listener in the back corrected aloud: “RICH white folk!”

Portraits of Anna Wintour and Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg hang at American University, which hosted the National Antiracist Book Festival.

“We’ve never had a democracy,” Kendi said. “In order to have freedom you have to have power. You have to have power in order to be free. People of color have never had power, women have never had power… antiracists must organize and accumulate power, the power to make and break policy.”

Anderson, the author of “White Rage”, “Bourgeois Radicals”, and “One Person No Vote”, argued that what remains underappreciated is the ever-present nature of racist anger by white people in every aspect of life, furthering “policies to put black people back in their place”. For this, she cited multiple claims she presented as facts, including: 16 million people were purged off voter rolls between 2012 and 2016 (“that’s white rage,” she said, “they’re electorally dead”); that Georgia’s Brian Kemp purged 10 percent of voters from Georgia rolls before 2018 election; that Kemp withheld 1,000 voting machines from minority counties on election day; that Ohio stopped being a swing state because it allows only one early voting location in each county; that in Wisconsin, 27 percent of black voters were prevented from voting in 2016 by voter ID law; and that GOP Secretaries of State including Kemp and Kobach have publicly claimed “voting isn’t a right, it’s a privilege to be earned.”

These claims awed the crowd and even the moderator, shaking their heads and murmuring with frustration. Most of them, you’ll be happy to learn, are exaggerated or in some cases totally untrue.

First, keep in mind the states are required to cull their voter lists. “The 1993 National Voter Registration Act mandates that state and local elections officers keep voter registration lists accurate by removing the names of people who die, move or fail in successive elections to vote.”

Second, those 1,000 voting machines: they were withheld “because of an ongoing federal lawsuit that argues Georgia’s electronic voting machines could be hacked or tampered with.” Abrams’ allies have made similar claims: “The suit was filed last November by Fair Fight Action, the nonprofit arm of a new voting rights organization founded by [Stacey] Abrams…”

Prior to the midterms, there was a question whether the machines were vulnerable to being hacked, so a September ruling from U.S. District Judge Amy Totenberg – an Obama appointee and sister of liberal reporter Nina Totenberg – ordered them sequestered.

Third, that 27 percent of Wisconsin black voters? It was based on a “survey” of a grand total of 288 people, and they were asked whether they were “deterred”, not blocked.

As for the claim that Ohio stopped being a swing state because it allows only one early voting location in each county – which would be news to Senator Sherrod Brown, and to Barack Obama, who won the state under the same rules in 2012. – it assumes that people are too dumb to use the mail.

About that claim GOP Secretaries of State including Kemp and Kansas’s Kris Kobach have publicly said “voting isn’t a right, it’s a privilege to be earned”? The closest example I can find is that Kemp’s lawyers have argued that voting by mail is a “privilege and a convenience, different in kind from the fundamental right to vote itself.” And, well, it is.

And what effect have all these purported efforts to target black voters achieved? Much higher turnout!

“If Georgia’s Brian Kemp is a vote suppressor, he’s the least successful vote suppressor alive. Turnout in Georgia was immense. In the previous gubernatorial election, Republican Nathan Deal won with 1.3 million votes. In November, Abrams lost with 1.9 million votes. There were roughly 2.5 million total votes cast in 2014. In 2018, more than 3.9 million Georgians voted. That almost matches the total votes cast for president in 2016.”

The total turnout in Georgia gubernatorial elections goes like this:

2006: 2,122,185
2010: 2,576,161
2014: 2,550,648
2018: 3,939,409

The turnout for the presidential election in 2016 was 4,141,447. They got 95% of that in the midterm, which is just unheard of. If Kemp was trying to make black people “electorally dead”, he did a very bad job of it.

Why is all this happening? Because it is a mechanism for seizing power by destroying the enemy narrative, and the enemy in this case is the United States of America. It advances an argument against Frederick Douglass, who said “The Constitution is a glorious liberty document.” And it all started at the moment Democrats started telling themselves they no longer needed the votes of poor white people. Interesting coincidence.

Clad in a Black AF shirt, Damon Young, the author of What Doesn’t Kill You Makes You Blacker, argued in the panel “On Poverty” that “If you are a black person creating art, you want to subvert the white gaze, but my editor at Harper Collins is white, I haven’t googled Harper or Collins but I assume they white – am I really subverting? Or am I still performing?”

His co-panelist, D. Watkins, echoed this perspective. “I’ve been muffled and silenced a lot, my best lines have been eaten.” He detailed an argument with an editor about referring to ordering a “chicken box” as opposed to a “box of chicken.”

The white gaze dominates, and only the wokest among us can don the mantle of antiracism. It comes with a book bag if you buy three.


Monday, April 29, 2019

Lemon Cuts Off Ex-Trump Aide After Calling Him 'DELUSIONAL'

Does Anyone Think It Odd To Be Told What Normal Behavior Is By Someone Living An Alternate Lifestyle? ... Just A Thought!

Image result for don lemon husband

Joseph A. Wulfsohn

CNN anchor Don Lemon lashed out at former White House aide Cliff Sims over President Donald Trump’s Charlottesville remarks and ended the segment early after he was accused by his guest of "contributing" to the political divide in the country.
While covering the White House Correspondents’ Dinner and the rally Trump held simultaneously in Green Bay, Wis. on Saturday night, CNN’s Alisyn Camerota began the conversation by criticizing President Trump’s pivot from his somber rally remarks about the deadly synagogue shooting in Poway, Calif. to his fiery attacks against the Russia investigation.
Sims responded by saying all Americans are “watching the same movie” and how they are “seeing dramatically different things” when it comes to the Trump presidency. He used Lemon’s response to Charlottesville as an example that his views of Trump’s remarks are “diametrically opposed” to many others, including himself, adding that Trump “did condemn” white supremacy.
“Then you’re delusional. Then you’re delusional, Cliff,” Lemon talked over Sims. “You’re saying because the president says words that are hollow- because the president said ‘we should come together.’”
“I couldn’t hear anything you just said, Don, because you insisted on talking over me,” Sims shot back. “So I really don’t know what you’re saying right now.”
“If you stop talking, then we won’t be talking over each other and I will let you responded,” Lemon said.
“Well, you want to interview me!” Sims exclaimed.  “You asked me to come on your program, so give me a chance to talk!”
CNN anchor Don Lemon (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File)
CNN anchor Don Lemon (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File)
Lemon accused the “Team of Vipers” author of saying that “the president’s words don’t matter,” which Sims denied. Sims then challenged Lemon to give an example of Trump “being a white supremacist.”
“I never called the president a white supremacist, so you’re watching the wrong program or you’re not hearing what I’m saying. What I have called the president is a racist,” the CNN anchor said. “When you call nations ‘s---hole countries,’ when you call African-American players ‘sons of b--hes, when you say there are ‘fine people on both sides,’ when you lie about it afterwards --“
Sims attempted to explain that Trump was saying there were “fine people on both sides” of the debate over Confederate statues, but Lemon insisted that’s not what the president said.
After another heated exchange, the former Trump aide accused Lemon of “contributing” to stoking division by re-litigating the Charlottesville remarks.
“I’m not the person who said that they were ‘fine people on both sides,’” Lemon fired back. “I’m not the person who called countries ‘sh--hole countries.’”
“You actually don’t even know if he said that because that’s another one of those based on anonymous and people in the room say blah, blah, blah, you actually don’t know if he said that,” Sims told Lemon.
“Yes, I do know that he said that,” Lemon claimed. “And it’s not ‘blah, blah, blah.”
The “CNN Tonight” host had enough of Sims and cut the segment short, shifting to someone he says “tried to bring this country together.”
“And that’s you, Don. You do a great job at that,” Sims sarcastically added before his mic was cut.
Lemon was actually referring to President Barack Obama.

Pelosi, Schumer Eye ‘MASSIVE’ Infrastructure Package Ahead of Trump Sit-Down

In this April 4, 2019 file photo, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington. Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer are to meet with Trump at the White House on Tuesday. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

In this April 4, 2019 file photo, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington. Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer are to meet with Trump at the White House on Tuesday. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Alex Pappas

Democratic congressional leaders Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer on Monday sent a letter to President Trump calling for a “big and bold infrastructure package” ahead of a planned meeting at the White House Tuesday between Democratic lawmakers and the president.
“America’s unmet infrastructure needs are massive, and a bipartisan infrastructure package must meet those needs with substantial, new and real revenue,” Pelosi, the House speaker, and Schumer, the Senate Democratic leader, wrote in their letter to Trump. “We look forward to hearing your ideas on how to pay for this package to ensure that it is big and bold enough to meet our country’s needs.”
The president – a real estate developer before he was elected president – has long sought to do a big infrastructure deal, though he has faced some resistance from conservatives in his party.
Still, leaders of both parties have expressed a desire to pass legislation this year to boost the nation's infrastructure. But big obstacles remain, including how to pay for it.
One of the president's economic advisers said the White House would not be going into Tuesday's meeting with a blueprint for an infrastructure bill.
"We're going slowly on this," said Larry Kudlow, director of the president's National Economic Council. "We would like this to be bipartisan. We would like to work with them and come up with something both sides can agree to. It's an important topic."
Pelosi and Schumer said an infrastructure package should go beyond addressing roads and bridges and should also include provisions to enhance broadband, water systems, energy, schools and housing.
“To truly be a gamechanger for the American people, we should go beyond transportation and into broadband, water, energy, schools, housing and other initiatives.  We must also invest in resiliency and risk mitigation of our current infrastructure to deal with climate change,” Pelosi and Schumer wrote.
Fox News’ Blake Burman and Jason Donner and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Sunday, April 28, 2019

Notre Dame Architect: Blaze Was NO ACCIDENT

French Official Cites Expert After CENCORSHIP By Fox News' Shepard Smith

Image result for fire at notre dame


Former Notre Dame Cathedral architect Benjamin Mouton in a live broadcast April 16 on the French TV network LCI:
When the Fox News Channel’s Shepard Smith hung up on French politician and media analyst Philippe Karsenty during live coverage of the Notre Dame Cathedral blaze, authorities already were speculating the catastrophe that gripped the world was caused by an accident.
Philippe Karsenty (Courtesy Philippe Karsenty)

Philippe Karsenty (Courtesy Philippe Karsenty)
Although speculation is the coin of the cable-news realm, an indignant Smith wanted nothing to do with Karsenty providing context to the April 15 fire – nearly 2,000 attacks on French churches in two years – that would suggest an alternative cause should be considered.
And, in fact, as Karsenty pointed out in an phone interview from France with WND, a former chief architect of the Notre Dame – whose analysis has been virtually ignored – believes the accident theory makes no sense.
Karsenty told WND he was “shocked” when Smith abruptly ended the interview.
“I just wanted to put it in context,” he said, referring to the surge of attacks on churches. “And then I said, nevertheless, the media are lecturing us an hour after it started, saying it can only be unintentional.
“I didn’t say it was a terrorist attack. I didn’t say it was criminal,” Karsenty recalled to WND.
The French media analyst said he couldn’t have imagined such censorship “would happen in the United States.”
“I thought I was with the free-media outlet in the land of freedom. And then I was cut off.”
Karsenty, 52, is the founder of the French media watchdog Media-Ratings and a councilor of the city of Neuilly-sur-Seine, a suburb of Paris.
Among the more recent of the nearly 2,000 attacks on churches in the past two years were a fire in Saint-Sulpice church in Paris, human feces smeared on a wall in Notre-Dame-des-Enfants in Nimes and the vandalization of the organ at Saint-Denis basilica outside the French capital.
Karsenty pointed out that while Paris public prosecutor Rémy Heitz has said from the beginning that he believes the fire was an accident, the former Notre Dame architect, Benjamin Mouton, insists that theory makes no sense.
In a live broadcast April 16 on the French TV network LCI, Mouton explained that the oak timbers that made up the cathedral’s roof had become hardened after more than 800 years and wouldn’t burn easily.
“You would need a lot of kindling to succeed,” said Mouton, who served as the chief architect from 2000 to 2013. “It stupefies me.”
Authorities suspect some type of electrical fire sparked the blaze, but Mouton believes that’s not possible.
“In the ’90s, we updated all the electrical wiring of Notre Dame. So there is no possibility of a short circuit,” he said. “We updated to conform with the contemporary norms, even going very far – all the detection and protection systems against fire in the cathedral.”
Last Thursday, investigators were allowed inside the cathedral for the first time, and a French police official told the New York Times nothing was being ruled out. They are focusing on the possibility of a short-circuit by electrified bells near the spire or cigarette butts left by workers carrying out renovation.
A bells specialist at the French Ministry of Culture, Regis Singer, said it’s plausible that the fire started in the bells in the spire.
But Nicolas Gueury, who electrified another set of bells in the cathedral in 2007, told the Times he thought about that possibility but has ruled it out.
“For me, this would be impossible,” he said, pointing out that numerous redundant safeguards, including circuit breakers and shielding, were installed.
“It was draconian. We tripled the precautions,” he said.
“We were all hyper-prudent. You don’t do just anything in the forest,” he said, referring to the medieval timbers that supported the roof. “It was hyper-securitized.”
A contractor admitted last Wednesday that workers renovating the cathedral flouted a ban on smoking. But he insisted “in no way could a cigarette butt be the cause of the fire at Notre-Dame.”
‘Thank you for telling the truth’
Karsenty is known in France and around the world for charging that the iconic “martyrdom” of the 12-year-old Palestinian boy Muhammad al-Dura in 2000 was a hoax meant to bring condemnation on Israel. A defamation suit by France 2 television and its Middle East correspondent against Karsenty resulted in a decade-long legal battle in which the nation’s highest court in 2012 overturned his conviction. A year later, the Paris Court of Appeals convicted him again. But that same year, an Israeli investigation, presenting video evidence, confirmed his claim that the Palestinians staged the boy’s death.
Nevertheless, to this day many on the left view Karsenty as a “conspiracy theorist,” and Shepard Smith’s treatment of him only solidified that view.
Philippe Karsenty (Wikimedia Commons)
Philippe Karsenty (Wikimedia Commons)
After the Fox News interview, Karsenty said, he was “slandered” on French TV and radio while some journalists told him privately they condemned Smith’s behavior.
At an elite club where he is a member along with prime ministers and members of parliament, he said people thanked him for speaking out.
“They said, ‘You were so right on TV. Thank you for telling the truth,” recounted Karsenty.
“People are fed up with the narrative they are telling us,” he said.
Karsenty said he was invited to come on a French TV program after his Fox News interview, but he requested that he be joined by Mouton, who would testify of his belief that the accident theory is unlikely, if not impossible.
Mouton declined, however, explaining he was in Shanghai, where he is a professor at Tongji University. And he hasn’t appeared on French television since the April 16 interview.
‘I thought I could go straight to the point’
Karsenty told WND he was not familiar with Shepard Smith and the news anchor’s reputation as a left-leaning counter to the network’s conservative commentators and hosts.
“To me, I was talking to Fox News. If I were on CNN or any other media outlet, I would have been more careful to bring the story,” he said.
“I thought I could go straight to the point of what was happening. I was shocked. It had never happened to me before anywhere in the world, to be cut off,” said Karsenty.
Smith interrupted his guest in the April 15 interview when after mentioning the church attacks, Karsenty said, “Of course you will hear the political correctness, that it’s probably an accident, but … ”
“Sir, sir, sir, we’re not going to speculate here of the cause of something that we don’t know,” Smith interjected. “If you have observations or you know something, we would love to hear it.”
Karsenty continued: “I’m just telling you you need to be ready …”
“No, sir. We’re not doing that here,” Smith declared. “Not now. Not on my watch! Philippe Karsenty, it’s very good of you to be here.”
See the Fox News interview:
Challenging the conventional narrative
Karsenty observed a pattern in such incidents – particularly if it might have something to do with Islam – of authorities, without having investigated, immediately telling the public it was an accident.
“If you come out and say, ‘Wait a minute, there may be another explanation,’ it’s not [allowed],” he said.
“You don’t have the right to think freely.”

The al-Dura affair echoes the Fox News interview, Karsenty acknowledged, in its challenge to a narrative staunchly held by information gatekeepers.
The images aired by France 2 of the father and son purportedly under fire from Israeli soldiers became a rallying cry for the 2000 Intifada against Israel. Postage stamps in the Middle East bore the images. And images of the boy could be seen in the background when Jewish-American journalist Daniel Pearl was beheaded by al-Qaida jihadists in 2002.
Karsenty said that even after video evidence was presented showing the incident was a hoax, French courts argued that he didn’t possess that evidence at the time he made the claim in the 2004 article that provoked the case.
It seems, he said, that he was found guilty of being “too intuitive.”
In a September 2013 interview with New English Review, Karsenty said France 2 television, French officials and the French Association of Journalists didn’t care about the facts.
“They have a faith. Their faith is that the state of Israel is guilty of killing children. They also have a political objective which is to make the state of Israel guilty,” he said.
“Anytime I’m in front of someone who has a decent brain and who is open-minded, when I show him the pieces of evidence he agrees and says of course it’s a hoax.”