Trump To Expand On Off-Shore Drilling And Why This Is A Good Thing

By Asish Samson

The Trump administration on Thursday unveiled its plan to expand offshore drilling on the US Continental shelf significantly. This move would lift the decades long ban on the California and Maine continental shelves. US Interior secretary Ryan Zinke unveiled the plan and spoke to the media in a conference call. He also announced that this move would help the USA become the “ Strongest energy superpower.” This five-year draft plan is the most expansive ever proposed in decades.

With this move US President Donald Trump would fulfil his promise of boosting energy and natural gas production made during his campaign. This would open doors for auctioning of the offshore drilling sites. As with any Trump administration decision, it has met with fierce backlash from Democrats, Media, coastal lawmakers and Environmental organisations and activists.

Offshore drilling involves the extractions of natural gas from the sea bed using large metallic drill and extractions pipes. First the sites in which significant amount of extractable oil is present also called as “ Wells” are detected using magnetic or seismic surveys. Once the oil is detected an exploratory drill is installed to explore the viability and then a production drill is attached to the sea bed to extract the oil to the surface platform.

Most of the negativity to offshore drilling is due to the accidental spillage of the oil and it’s supposedly “ negative” impact on the marine ecosystem in which it is carried out. But if one looks into the issue objectively and without an open mind, it appears that offshore drilling actually helps the USA and its citizens most of all.

Why it helps :
Energy independence: This move would drastically reduce the US reliance on foreign countries like Saudi Arabia for oil drastically. One estimate puts that the current expansion of offshore drilling would supply the US with almost 30 years worth of current imports from Saudi Arabia! This self-reliance for oil would only help the US.

Jobs and Economy : Needless to say, this move would create a huge boost for job creation and the economy ( which are already improving day by day). A study by Quest offshore resources predicted that about 200,000 new jobs would be created by this move. This would also generate $3.5 Trillion in revenue in the next 30 years. The national GDP would increase by $23 billion per year by 2035. It also would reduce consumer prices.

Reduces Pollution : Yes, you read that right. The number one cause of marine pollution is oil seepage, not spillage. According to the National Research Council, the Oil seepage and Natural gas leakage from the sea bed is the largest cause of marine pollution in North America. About 10,000 gallons of oil are released into the Ocean off the coast of California and Santa Barbara alone every single day! About 3 million cubic feet of natural gas is released each day from the coast of California. This has been confirmed by several university studies. SOS California which stands for Stop Oil Seeps, an environmental group actually advocates for Offshore drilling to reduce pollution. Offshore drilling actually reduces pollution by extracting the oil to the surface and thereby reducing pollution through seepage or leakage. It also reduces the amount of petroleum and hydrocarbons released into the marine environment.

Another added benefit of offshore drilling is the creation artificial reefs for marine flora and fauna. As previously covered in a New York Times article, These drilling rigs and platform provide an excellent artificial reefs and habitats for a large variety of marine organisms. In some ways, these artificial reefs are better than estuaries or coral reefs.

All said and done, the droves of people jumping into the band wagon and opposing it should realise that they are protesting against all these benefits including guaranteed reductions in pollution against an uncertain accidental spillage.

The Alternative for Cutting Pakistan Aid

By Stefan Matias Kløvning

As Trump begins his second year of the presidency, he has not gotten tired of dispersing the Obama legacy. What he has namely done is suggested cutting aid to Pakistan as the first matter he tweeted about this year. “The United States,” Trump proclaims, “has foolishly given Pakistan more than 33 billion dollars in aid over the last 15 years, and they have given us nothing but lies and deceit, thinking of our leaders as fools. They give safe haven to the terrorists we hunt in Afghanistan, with little help. No more!”

What basis this stance exactly comes from is unknown, but Reuters reported that it might be related to his critique of Islamabad’s inefficacy of dealing with Islamic terrorism. Nikki Haley, US Ambassador to the United Nations, echoed this critique a day later, accusing them to have played “a double game for years.” “That game is not acceptable to this administration.” This shows that there is agreement within the administration to get this thing through. Senator Rand Paul was interested in taking charge of ending the end to Pakistan, rejoicing “Let’s make this happen.”

Haley confirmed consequently that they would withhold $255 million in aid to the country. The Pakistan embassy in Washington did not respond to a request for a comment to Reuters about this, but Pakistan’s foreign minister, Khawaja M. Asif tweeted that they will respond to the tweet soon and that they “will let the world know the truth … between facts & fiction.” Responding to this criticism, the country claims to have launched military operations to get militants off their land and referring to the 17,000 Pakistanis who have died fighting militant attacks since 2001.

Azeem Ibrahim made a study in 2009 of the vast amounts of aid from the US to Pakistan for the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, called “U.S. Aid to Pakistan – U.S. Taxpayers Have Funded Pakistani Corruption.” This paper does not advocate for a definite reducing of aid, but proposes a solution to how it can be reformed to be more appropriately used for the intentional purposes. He, first of all, suggests that the United States should only put conditions on how the aid is to be spent and not to “micromanage specific positive outcomes by institutions beyond U.S. control.” He also states some failures on the American side regarding this for instance that (1) they have not been transparent about the funds, (2) they have misused them, (3) they lacked a strategy for the use of funds, (4) they had inadequate procedures for checking our Pakistan spent the funds, (5) the funds disincentivized democracy. In addition to this, he also accuses the Pakistani military of not using most of the funds for fighting terror, and there being corruption within the army. Ibrahim later writes, however, that the U.S. should reduce the aid to Pakistan if they don’t meet the right criteria: (1) providing a detailed oversight to Congress on how they spend the aid, (2) taking steps to improve its accounting procedures, (3) the army has stable accountability to the civilian leadership, (3) not purchasing material not relevant for counter-terrorism, (4) not increasing their nuclear capabilities, (5) not being evidence of them funding corruption. Ibrahim concludes with that the United States must only use sanctions to “disincentivize activities which are in direct conflict with U.S. foreign policy outcomes.”

 

This was written in 2009, so what are we to make of it now, nine years later? Its principles count as much now as they did then, with more and more money being spent. It seems to be a better idea to do as Ibrahim says here, and put conditions on them on how to use the money, and reduce aid if this is not followed appropriately, but as we saw with Trump’s decertification of the Iran Nuclear deal, he has a tendency to have expectations exceeding the demands provided. What Trump should go forward to improve his foreign policy is to make clear what demands and requirements he has for the countries in question, because, frankly, at the moment it seems to be easy for both Pakistan and Iran to place itself in a position where the world’s greatest superpower is pushing unreasonable demands on them, which is really negative for America’s position in the world. Trump’s foreign policy has merit in it being tough on global terrorism, but without more clarity in his demands, it could turn out a lot worse than the alternative proposes.

US Calls For Emergency UN Meeting Over Iran

By Asish Samson

The United States of America has called for an emergency UN meeting in light of the sixth consecutive day of protests in Iran. US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley has urged UN to hold multiple emergency session meetings and has pronounced that “All freedom loving people must stand with their cause.” She also urged the International community not to do the same mistake they made in 2009 by not offering any support.

The Iranian protests has taken a very violent turn with 21 people killed in the last five days alone. The protests initially began in response to the severe economic stagnation and eventually grew into large scale protests against government corruptions, rise in food prices, individual freedoms and the fundamentalist culture in general. Around 450 people were arrested in the first three days of protests.

Nikki Haley has called for meetings both in New York and the Human Rights Council in Geneva. After the Iranian government blocked social media to its citizens, Haley read out slogans from the Iranian protestors to the audience. Haley also said that US would not take any unilateral actions in this regard. She also rejected all claims by the Iranian government that the protests were orchestrated by their “enemies”. She also said that more similar “outrageous abuses” would be made in the days to come.

US President Donald Trump had also made his stance very clear on Iranian protests. In a series of tweets Trump slammed the government of Iran while praising the protests. He also gave a warning that claimed that the US was watching Iran closely. Trump also attacked Barrack Obama, his predecessor over his response to the 2009 Iran protests. Obama had remained very silent during those protests not offering any indication of where the US stood. Trump, in star contrast almost immediately pledged his support.

Under Secretary of State Steve Goldstein has revealed that the US government was in touch with the people of Iran through Facebook and Twitter in the Farsi language which could be accessed by VPN. He also urged the tech companies to keep their sites available in Iran.

The US State Department was also in constant touch with its European counterparts to discuss strategy. All in all the US this time is committed to do all it can to support the people of Iran in any ways possible while also maintaining a non-interventionist attitude.

Logan Paul’s Dead Body Video Showed Obvious Bias In YouTube’s Agenda

By Steven E. White

Logan Paul is a vlogger and YouTube star, who recently filmed his adventures in Tokyo, Japan. Monday, January 1, Logan uploaded a video entitled “We found a dead body in the Japanese Suicide Forest…” The video showed Logan and his friends hiking into Aokigahara, the Suicide Forest, planning to camp overnight, when they stumbled upon a dead man, hanging from a tree.

Instead of turning the cameras off, he decides that they should go investigate and tells the cameraman, “bring the camera.” He blurs out the face of the man, but still shows the rope, his winter clothes, and the purple, cold hands of the individual.

In less than 24 hours, and after being the tenth most trending video on YouTube, it was taken down; not by YouTube, but Logan himself, who faced severe internet backlash. YouTube consumers, and celebrities alike, are up in arms about this controversial video, because it directly violates YouTube’s policies. The guidelines say gory content is prohibited if it is shown in a disrespectful or shocking manner. Logan was completely disrespectful, joking while disregarding the severity of the situation by showing the body over and over again.

“I don’t feel very good.” His friend said behind the camera; to whom Logan replied, with laughter “What, you never stood next to a dead guy?” When they return to the parking lot, he jokes again to a fireman, “You guys got a dead guy in your forest, four knots south east.” – The knot is a unit of speed, his cameraman correcting him, as part of the joke.

Maybe this is how he copes with tragedy or trauma. Maybe it’s how he deals with the shock of the situation; by laughing, and being light-hearted. However understandable, and relatable to some, even if this really is the case, It’s still disrespectful to the body and that individual’s family.

“There are kids running around. What if the kids stumbled upon this guy?” He spoke to the camera, even though he hypocritically posted the video for his mostly teen and child fanbase. The video had around 550 thousand uncontested likes before it was removed, Philip DeFranco pointing out that his core fans don’t care what he does, or what he posts.

YouTube doesn’t seem to care either, who manually reviewed the video once it was reported and decided to leave it up. Meanwhile, those who re-uploaded the video were slapped with strikes for graphic content. Keep in mind it wasn’t YouTube who removed the video, but Logan himself, and only after severe backlash. This simply shows the bias of YouTube’s selective policing of videos. Political commentators, especially right wing ones, get demonetized and sometimes even censored, if they say something YouTube doesn’t agree with. Even a video by Jordan Peterson, a psychologist and philosopher, got censored in Europe, even though his video was simply a response to accusations of being a white supremacist.

It seems there is a VIP pass some uploaders get, for having the ‘correct’ political views, or right corporate affiliation. Casey Nistat’s video, of fundraising for the victims of the Las Vegas shooter, had its ads removed because YouTube’s policy states it can’t run ads on videos about tragedies. Meanwhile Jimmy Kimmel uploaded a video, going on a gun control rant, in response to the Vegas shooting, and gets #1 on trending, and keeps the ads on that video.

The way YouTube is running its site, it seems that if you’re right wing, the rules especially apply to you. People have taken notice of YouTube’s bias; Sarah T. Roberts of UCLA stating, in regards to the issue, “Of course YouTube is absolutely complicit in these kinds of things.”

No More Foreign Aid! Trump Cuts Off All Foreign Aid To Pakistan

By Asish Samson

In a particularly strong move the US has withheld financial aid to Pakistan. The White House on Monday announced that it would be withholding the pending $255 million earmarked for Pakistan. As if to punctuate the move, President Trump in his first tweet in the New Year slammed Pakistan for its “lies and deceit” over its fight against terrorism.

Ties between US and Pakistan have been strained since Trump took office. Trump had previously criticised Pakistan even during his campaign over their commitment to fighting radical Islamic terrorism. The US had previously given $33 billion in military and non military aid to Pakistan over the last 15 years. This should come as a no surprise to anyone since US had made its intentions clear months ago. Vice President Mike Pence too had recently declared in Afghanistan that Trump put Pakistan “ on notice.”

The ever degrading ties between Pakistan and the US have been kick started after Osama Bin Laden, the most wanted man in the world, the head of Al Qaeda and the mastermind behind the 9/11 attacks had been found to be living in Pakistan for years in a bungalow in Abbottabad suspiciously close to a military base. The US had been hunting for him since 2001 and finally killed him in 2010 in his bungalow. This incident sparked widespread criticism on Pakistan for their harbouring on such terrorists. While Pakistan repeatedly denied ever knowing about Osama Bin Laden, it was clear that they had failed. Recently Pakistan had released Hafeez Saeed, the main accused in 2008 Mumbai terror attacks. This move sparked outrage from India and its allies calling for immediate arrest and re-imprisonment of the accused. Gen John Nicholson, the commander of the NATO coalition in Afghanistan revealed in November that many Taliban leaders were “Living in comfort with plenty of drug money” in Pakistan.

Pakistan has recently been growing alarmingly close to China and China has responded back kindly. China sees Pakistan as an ally against India and the US. This close proximity has surely not escaped the US who has always viewed China as its rival. The Chinese have repeatedly come to defend Pakistan in many issues globally. The combinations of all these factors and a host of unmet US demands has led to this move.

The stoppage of aid and the subsequent Trump tweet have evoked a sharp response in Pakistan with US Ambassador to Pakistan David Hale being summoned to the foreign ministry and Prime Minister Abbasi calling for an emergency National Security meet. Around 200 members of the coalition of Islamist parties have protested by burning the flag of USA.

Meanwhile India has welcomed the move and expressed that its stand had been “Vindicated” by this decision. India has always criticised Pakistan and particularly the ISI in their role in counter-terrorism and providing safe havens for terrorists.

All There Is To Know About The Bronx Fire

By Kanach Peterson

The scream’s heard from a 3-year-old child, alerted his mother that a fire has erupted in the kitchen. The mother walks in to find that he had been playing with the stove knobs again. A situation far too frequent. By the time the mother had fled the apartment with the boy and his 2- year old sibling she neglected to realize that she made the fatal mistake of leaving her apartment door ajar.
The fire quickly consumed the hallway of the five-story building in the Bronx Thursday night. Confronted with the inferno in the hallway, residents on higher floors retreated to their fire escapes giving the fire even more oxygen. Those along the side and back of the building, where the fire began, could not react in time get to their fire escape. The stairwell becoming in effect a “like a chimney” as the fire flowed from the apartment, feeding the flames and allowing them to spread throughout the building, FDNY Commissioner Daniel Nigro said Friday.

 

The tragic incident resulted in the death of 12, including 4 children, the New York Police Department said. This made the fire at 2363 Prospect Avenue the deadliest fire in New York for the past 27 years. Along those dead, four other individuals were critically injured and are “fighting for their lives right now,” said Mayor Bill deBlasio on Friday.
The first responders to the fire were unable to get water from the closest hydrant due to the water being frozen. The fire took place on the coldest night of the year.
The occasion prompted safety officials to remind New Yorkers that open doors hasten the spread of flames.
“Close the door, close the door, close the door,” the fire commissioner, Daniel A. Nigro, said at a news conference on Friday.
The fire commissioner stated that he is unsure whether all of the smoke detectors in the building were working. According to records from a city housing agency, one of the apartments on the buildings first-floor reported a defective smoke alarm and carbon monoxide detectors. However, it is unknown whether those issues were resolved or played a part in this. It seems that nothing structural about the building contributed to the deadly conditions created by the fire said Nigro. The building had a “relatively low history of repair violations,” a spokesperson for New York City Housing Preservation and Development said.

 

image-3
Among those killed in the Bronx fire were Karen Stewart-Francis, top right, 37; and her two daughters, Kylie Francis, bottom left, 2, and Kelly Francis, 7, bottom right, and her niece, Shawntay Young, top left, 19.

The Iranian Protests, What Is It All About?

By Steven E. White

Protesters hit the streets of Iran’s Capital, Tehran, on Saturday the 30th of December. Riots and protests have been rampaging in Iran since Thursday, but only now hit Tehran. There have been, reportedly, two deaths of demonstrators, as they attacked police and state buildings.

The Protests started in the northeastern city of Mashhad, on Thursday, before rapidly spreading throughout the country on Friday. First Vice-President Eshaq Jahangiri told the IRNA, an official news agency, the the demonstrations had spread throughout Tehran, Kermanshah, Qazvin, Karaj, Sabzevar, Arak, and Khorramabad. Many Iranian media outlets reported a number of arrests, including the detainning of two students of Tehran college.

A video surfaced on social media, showing the two young men lying motionless on the ground, covered in blood, as the voice over spoke, “I will kill whoever killed my brother.” though the video cannot, as of yet, be authenticated. Another video from Dorud showed protesters yelling, “Death to the Dictator!”

The protest, said to be caused by the rising price of gasoline and food, and alleged corruption, is described as the largest public display of discontent since the Green Movement in Iran of 2009. According to the Statistical Center of Iran, in 2017’s fiscal year, unemployment in Iran has risen to 12.4 percent, up 1.4 percentage points from last year, and leaving, roughly, 3.2 million Iranians jobless. Annual inflation is up by 8% as well, hiking up food prices, while there is still a shortage of goods.

The unrest sparked communication between nations, Trump tweeting that the world is watching, on December 29, “Many reports of peaceful protests by Iranian citizens fed up with regime’s corruption & its squandering of the nation’s wealth to fund terrorism abroad. Iranian govt should respect their people’s rights, including right to express themselves. The world is watching!”

He continued in a speech, “The entire world understands that the good people of Iran want change, and, other than the vast military power of the United States, that Iran’s people are what their leaders fear the most.” He then explains that this fear is the cause of Internet restriction, shooting of unarmed student protesters, and imprisonment of political reformists; all carried out by the regime.

The Revolutionary Guards’ Deputy Security Chief in Tehran, Brigadier-General Esmail Kowsari, concluded the situation in the capital was under control, but if the unrest continues, protesters would face “the nation’s iron fist.”

Though there have been many arrests, a state television announced that most detainees had been released, without giving detail. It put the blame on enemy media outlets, saying, “Enemy websites and foreign media continue to try to exploit economic hardships and the legitimate demands of the people in this respect to launch illegal gatherings and possible unrest.”

Trump concluded, in his speech, “Oppressive regimes cannot endure forever, and the day will come when the Iranian people will face a choice. Will they continue down the path of poverty, bloodshed, and terror, or will the Iranian people return to the nation’s proud roots as a center of civilisation, culture, and wealth, where their people can be happy, and prosperous once again.”

90% Of Media Coverage On Trump Is Negative

By Asish Samson

US President Donald Trump has experienced unprecedented hostility and bias from most of the mainstream media ever since he announced his run for the Presidency and even more so after he took office. The mainstream media has repeatedly denied any such thing claiming they were “unbiased and unprejudiced” but,the recently released numbers by the Media Research Centre has left them red faced and embarrassed. According to a new study conducted on all major broadcast news networks including ABC,NBC and CBS by the Media Research Centre has revealed that 90% of the coverage of Trump has been negative. Over the last six months 91% of coverage has largely been negative.

In September there have been 359 negative statements of Trump while only 31 were positive. In October the negative statements rose to 453 vs 41 positive statements. In November, 320 negative statements against 33 positive ones. That is 1,132 negatives statements versus just 105 positive statements in just the three months alone. This is crystal clear evidence of a negative bias against Trump and his administration.

Its not that the media just reported negative aspects of his Presidency they have actually neutral and even good issues against Trump to paint the negative picture and portray his administration as destructive or a failure.

For example, during Hurricane Harvey in Houston MSNBC described Trump’s visit very strangely as “too soon”. The NY Times singled out Melania Trump for wearing high heels to Houston even though she had brought sneakers to change midway. During Hurricane Irma CNN, Instead of talking about the Hurricanes impact and destruction went on and on about how Trump was “wrong on climate change”. During the Charlottesville riots the mainstream media repeatedly condemned Trump for not responding fast enough even though he had responded on the same day and multiple times thereafter. And then when he made the initial statement they described it as “hateful, bigoted” and “incredibly unpresidential” even though he blamed both sides for the riots. During the Berkeley and Boston anti-free speech riots they blamed Trump for the so called “hate filled environment” even though it was the liberals and the anti-Trump protesters who were rioting and burning furniture and public property. Even during the recent New York subway suicide bombing attempt, CNN was busy talking about how many Diet Cokes Trump drinks and how much time he spends on television. And in some of the most bizarre news articles ever written, Newsweek, Buzzfeed, IBtimes UK ran lengthy pieces that criticised how Trump drinks water from a water bottle. Yes, they ran entire articles on how Trump was holding the bottle wrong with two hands as if that has been deciding elections all over the world since the past century. They even went into length about the different size and variations of water bottle and how they should be held. All for Trump.

This is in stark contrast to the media from the past 8 years under Obama which always strived so hard to maintain a peaceful and rosy picture of his administration even though it dropped more bombs on foreign countries and deported more people than George W. Bush and unemployment reached a record high and the national debt tripled. The media even portrayed the Obama presidency as entirely “scandal free” while ignoring the outrageous Fast and Furious Scandal, The Hezbollah Drug trade cover up, The Iran hostage and ransom issue, IRS targeting of conservative organisations among many others.
But, Trump didn’t leave the media alone to suffer its illusions. He repeatedly took on the media on twitter highlighting every false story and wrong information. He called them out in press conferences many times. He used nicknames against most of them like the “Fake news CNN” and the “ Failing NY Times” tags which struck his followers minds. The media too were found wanting in accuracy many times. CNN’s story about White House communications director’s links to the Russian investigation turned out be false. CNN had to retract the story and 3 journalists including a Pulitzer Prize winner lost their jobs. The New York Times omitted two key pieces of evidence in their Russian Influence story which proved beyond doubt that there was no wrong doing from Trump’s part. Many news media outlets have also highlighted a few select aspects of the Russian Investigations while repeatedly burying official quotes which stated that no proof of collusion between Trump and Russia could be established.
The amusing part is that most of these news media outlets and their narratives have repeatedly failed to recognise that their stories and bias has little to no effect on Trump or his support base. Surely they would do well to remember that all these would only alienate neutral voters and strengthen the resolve of Trump supporters.

Trump’s Annual Accomplishments – What Has He Achieved Now 2017 Is Almost Over

By Asish Samson

The US media make their bread and butter writing about Trump, his policies, his tweets, his children, his wife, his hairstyle, his choice of food and how he eats it, how he hold water bottles, how many diet coke he drinks and how many hours of television he watches a day among others. There are people who love him dearly and support everything he does with strong passion and much fanfare and there are people who hate him with same passion and decry every single thing he does. Love him or hate him, we just can’t ignore him. Trump is a man of action and he has proved that by his sweeping changes, executive orders and his policies. So without further delay below are ten of Trump’s top accomplishments since he took office.
10.GDP and Economy: This was one of Trump’s biggest promises in his election campaign and from the numbers seen since he took office he has delivered big time already. The Gross Domestic Product or GDP of the US has seen a significant growth. According to the Bureau of Economic analysis GDP has grown at a rate of 3.1 percent in the second quarter and 3.2 percent in the third quarter and it is expected to rise even more by next quarter. The Consumer confidence index, measured last October was at the highest level in the past 17 years. The Dow broke records 70 times this year and it rose 5,000 points in a single year, the first time in history!

9. Unemployment : This was also one of Trump’s biggest talking points during his campaign and Trump delivered here too. The number of Americans filing applications for unemployment fell to a 44 low this year. That is it has fallen to a low never since December 29, 1973. Trump’s promise of him going to be “ The greatest jobs president God ever created!” seems to be shaping up in his first year itself.

8. Judicial Appointments : Trump had repeatedly made promises to nominate a conservative Judge to the supreme court and he fulfilled this promise by appointing Neil Gorsuch, a strict constitutionalist of the conservative leaning to the highest court in April. This was welcomed by conservatives and judges nationwide. His administration also nominated 73 new federal judges in the same vein.

7. North Korea : Trump took a particularly strong stance against the North Korea and its leader Kim Jong Un. His administration imposed multiple sanctions on Pyongyang all throughout the year. It also initiated a resolution in the U.N Security Council that cut the country’s export revenue by a third. Trump also pressured China to keep Kim under check and eventually caused China’s Central bank to immediately stop its dealings with North Korea. The US also deployed the THAAD missile defence system to South Korea, Pyongyang’s long time rival.

6.Immigration : Perhaps the issue which headlined Trump’s presidential campaign Immigration reform and Border Control were always high on Trump’s agenda. In the first month since Trump took office alone, illegal border crossing has dropped by 40%. By his 100th day in office it has dropped by a staggering 73%. The Trump administration also cancelled Obama’s DACA programme. The number of deportations also increased by 28% compared to 2016. On Oct 4th the Homeland Security gave approval to Trump’s Border Wall bill and new waiver for construction and 10,000 additional border agents and officers on the US-Mexico line. Trump’s Travel Ban against select countries to prevent the threat from imported terrorism also was approved recently by the Supreme Court.

5. Trade deals : In this particular issue Trump brought forth his “ America First” agenda without any delay. He pulled US out of the disastrous NAFTA deal. More than $2 Billion in fines were assessed to Canada and China alone for illegal trade practices. Trump struck a $10 million a year deal with Argentina that allowed Pork from the US to enter Argentinian market for the first time since 1992. In September Trump began the process of renegotiating the US-South Korea Free Trade Agreement. During his visit to China in November, Trump announced a $250 billion dollar trade and investment deals that would generate jobs and revenue to American workers, farmers and ranchers by increasing US exports to China.

4. Military and Defence: Trump has always been strong on defence and he doubled down on this by increasing military and defence spending. In June the Trump Defence Department authorised the set up of troop levels in Afghanistan and Somalia while maintaining a strict non-interventionist attitude. Trump highly elevated America’s cyber security programme. Trump also negotiated a lucrative deal with Lockheed Martin that allowed the US to purchase 90 F-35 jets for the lowest price in the programme’s history saving $725 million and other additional savings. In December Trump signed a $4 billion dollar Anti-missile defence system bill in light of the North Korean threat.

3. Veteran Administration reform : This is one area in which Trump actually did much more than he ever promised. In April, Trump signed the VA Choice and Quality employment Act which authorised $2.1 billion in additional funds that allowed veterans get better and faster treatment outside VA system. In June Trump established the new White House Veterans Hotline to help veterans and which was fully staffed by veterans themselves. In the same month Trump also resolved the problematic information sharing rift between the VA and the Department of Defence. Trump also signed the Veterans Accountability and Whistle Blower Protection act which allowed and better governance and safeguards to protect whistle blowers. In August Trump signed the Harry W.Colmery Educational Assistance Act which granted educational benefits to veterans, service members and their families which included books, tuition fees, housing and other additional costs. He also streamlined the lengthy process the disabled veterans had to undergo to appeal for disability by signing a special act and thereby resolving the problem for more than 470,000 veterans who were waiting.

2.ISIS : This is one issue in which even the anti-Trump section of the media like the New York Times or USA Today had to admit recently that Trump had done a really good job. The Trump Administration literally drove out ISIS from its strong hold in Iraq and Syria. One ISIS expert recently even commented that ISIS was “no more.” It all started in April when the US dropped the GBU-43B also know as the “Mother of all bombs” or MOAB the largest non-nuclear bomb in existence on ISIS tunnels which at least 94 ISIS militants including 4 commanders and weapon stockpiles. By November- December the U.S. Armed forces along with the Iraqi Military took back virtually all territories from ISIS thus ending it’s reign of terror.

1.Tax Reform bill : In the biggest accomplishment for Trump this year the senate passed the Tax reform bill which created huge tax cuts. Corporate tax was cut from 35% to 21% and the middle-class also experienced a big tax cut along with small businesses. Many companies announced thousands of dollars of bonuses to American workers over Christmas. This was a move which was sure to create more job and increase the GDP and economy further.

There many other accomplishments for the Trump administration like Deregulation, sweeping changes in Law enforcement and education along with religious liberty laws, EPA reforms, Human rights laws, Government transparency among others. Trump achieved all these and much more in less than a year in office. If it was in his own words Trump would say that he was winning “ BIGLY!”.

This Spring, You May Literally Board The Trump Train! – Israel To Name Train Station After Trump

By Steven E. White

Yisrael Katz, the Israel Transportation Minister, announced a plan to name the new train station, near the Western Wall, after President Donald Trump. Katz said on Wednesday, the 27th, “The Kotel [Western Wall] is the holiest place to the Jewish people, and I have decided to name the train station leading to it after US President Donald Trump, in recognition of his brave and historic decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.”

The project still has to undergo approval, but if accepted, will run two miles of high-speed railway from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, the Jewish Press reported. “This project is now awaiting a discussion in the National Infrastructures Planning Committee,” Avner Ovadia, the Transportation Ministry spokesman, continued, “When it is discussed there, it means that it receives priority in its advancement and in carrying out the project.” The project would not only include the Donald John Trump Western Wall station, but also a City Center Station.

Despite the expected opposition, Avner Ovadia says the plan should be approved this coming year and that the train would be open that spring. He spoke, “There’s no reason why this train won’t be built…. We already know how to deal with no less difficult opposition.”

One of the biggest problems is, digging a tunnel to the Western Wall would also entail excavation of Jerusalem’s Old City; where rich archaeological remains of many millenniums, and religious and political sensitivities reside, making for legal and logistical difficulties. Already, Israeli archaeologists have contested an initiative to convert an excavated area of the Western Wall into an egalitarian Jewish Prayer Section.

Early in December, Trump decided to recognize Jerusalem as the Capital city of Israel, and announced his plan to relocate the U.S. Embassy there. He tweeted on December 6, “I have determined that it is time to officially recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. I am also directing the State Department to begin preparation to move the American Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem…”

In 1995, President Bill Clinton signed a law which ordered the relocation of the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem. Even with this law, every President since has promised to fulfill it, and move the Embassy, but all have fallen short. They wanted the relocation to come by peaceful negotiation, rather than law. Trump has been the first President since 1995 to fulfill this campaign promise.

Chuck Grassley congratulated and supported Trump in this decision, saying “Jerusalem Embassy Act of ‘95 (Senate vote 93-5 & I voted for it) states embassy should be in Jerusalem by 5/31/99. For 18 yrs, Rep + Dem presidents waived. Congrats Pres Trump for making this move. Amen!!!”

Many individuals and nations fought against Trump; the United Nations voting 128-9 to try and disavow Trump’s declaration. The vote exclaimed his move “null and void” even though the vote has no impact on the decision.

Trump promises to move forward on his decision, to fulfill his promise, regardless of the disapproval of the U.N. and has, in doing so, gained favor of Israeli individuals and officials.

BLOCKED: Two Key N.Korean Officials Sanctioned By USA

Two top level North Korean officials were sanctioned by the USA over their involvement in the ballistic missile programme on Tuesday. The sanctions effectively block them from holding or acquiring any property within US jurisdiction also prohibits them from any transactions with American Citizens.
The two officials Kim Jong Sik and Ri Pyong Chol are seniors in the North Korean Munitions Department and are frequently seen with Kim Jong Un in photos and news clippings. Kim Jong Sik is considered to be key figure in the country’s attempts to switch from liquid to solid fuel which could allow them to launch with a lesser warning and easier to hide before launch.

The new sanctions were preceded by UN Security Council’s resolution which imposed new sanctions on North Korean on Friday. The UN sanctions were in response to the Nov 28 missile test. The latest missile test by Pyongyang include a ballistic missile which could reach U.S mainland including New York or Washington. US President Donald Trump has recently signed a 4 billion dollar anti-missile defence bill to beef up missile defence systems primarily against North Korea.

Steven Mnuchin, the US Treasury Secretary has claimed that the new sanctions were part of a “maximum pressure campaign to achieve a fully denuclearised Korean Peninsula.” South Korean too also welcomed the sanctions terming them as “the right decision.”

Meanwhile the North Korean foreign ministry has declared the new sanctions as an “act of war” claiming the US were “violating peace in the Korean peninsula.” It also announced that it was unilaterally rejecting the sanctions.

UN Sanctions N.Korea Over Oil And Other Imports

By Steven E. White

On Friday, the 22nd of December, the United Nations voted 15-0 to impose additional sanctions on North Korea. They hope to severely damage North Korea’s economy, specifically targeting their oil imports, and their workers in other countries.

Along with restricting 89% of their oil imports, workers from North Korea in other countries will be forced to move back, within two years. There are roughly 100,000 laborers from North Korea, in other countries who are ordered to return home within two years. These people are sent by North Korea to make money for their country, from their targeted areas, and send it back to their nation. With these sanctions, the United Nations hope North Korea will abandon their nuclear weapons program. In November, North Korea tested a ballistic missile, which they say has the ability to strike anywhere on the entire American mainland, alarming US and Japanese officials.

Japan has approved its biggest defence budget thus far, in response to the Korean threat. America, and the UN have sanctioned North Korea to the point where the only thing left to leverage would be to starve their people; and so far, Trump and the UN refuse to do so. Thomas P. Bossert, White House Homeland Security Advisor, recently stated, in regard to leveraging them with sanctions, that America has “used just about every lever you can use, short of starving the people of North Korea to death to change their behaviour.” Thomas continues, “And so we don’t have a lot of room left here to apply pressure to change their behavior.” They are running of ethical sanctions.

Despite the several measures taken against the North Korean economy, nothing has yet dissuaded them from launching missiles. The C.I.A. assessment of Kim Jong-un concludes that no matter what we may sanction, or whatever we may do, stubborn Kim will not abandon his nuclear weapons program.

Trump took to Twitter, stating the world wants peace, not death, “The United Nations Security Council just voted 15-0 in favor of additional Sanctions on North Korea. The World wants Peace, not Death!” When America proposed the sanction plan, China, and Russia surprisingly voted for the sanctions. China has been reluctant to sanction North Korea, for fear of destabilizing its neighbor. Vladimir Safronkov, Russia’s Deputy Ambassador, made a point that Russia had been not adequately informed on the sanctions or plans, but still went along with the vote.

Nikki R. Haley added, after thanking everyone for their vote, that further defiance from North Korea would “invite further punishment and isolation.” She also stated that the ballistic missile test last month was “another attempt by the Kim regime to masquerade as a great power while their people starve and their soldiers defect.”

Wu Haitao, China’s Deputy Ambassador, said their recent efforts reflect “the unanimous position of the international community,” and he went on to urge North Korea to “refrain from conducting any further nuclear and missile tests.”

Hopefully, these sanction will finally convince Kim to shut down his nuclear weapons program, and put the world at ease.

Trump Signs 4 Billion Dollar Defence Bill

By Asish Samson

President Donald Trump signed the Missile Defence Bill in his office on Friday before leaving for the holidays. The bill allocates more than 4.6 billions to anti-missile defences in the US which includes repairs to Navy destroyers damaged during the summer.

It also includes 2.4 billion dollars for defence Procurement, 1.3 billion for Research and Development and 43 million for operations and maintenance. A missile interceptor field is also set to be built in Alaska with an additional 200 million dollars set aside for the purpose.

The Navy ships USS Fitzgerald and the USS John McCain were heavily damaged in separate accidents previously this year. On June 17th the Fitzgerald was involved in a collision which killed seven sailors while McCain hit a Liberian oil tanker near the Strait of Malacca on Aug 21. $674 million are include in the bill for the repairs of these two ships. The interceptor field in Alaska is set to add another 20 missile interceptor which brings the total to 60 along with the previous ones in Fort Greely.
The bill achieves prominence in light of the imminent threat from North Korea. North Korean military has recently made some alarming moves causing global panic. President Trump whose agenda has always been strong defence has announced the signing of the bill on Twitter. Previously this month Trump signed the National Defence Authorisation Act into law.

The Missile Defence Advocacy Alliance(MDAA), a non-profit organisation has praised and welcomed the signing of the bill. MDAA has always advocated for a stronger anti-missile defence programs to combat growing threats from North Korea, Iran and Russia among others.
Along with interceptors the U.S Ballistic Missile Defence programme also includes US deployed Sensor Systems which includes mid ranged radars and satellite systems along with sea based X band radars. Interceptors are again divided into types like Ground based interceptor, Afloat, Ashore, High Altitude and Low Altitude aircraft and helicopters.

With the allocation of additional funding from the bill the defence hawks in the military are sure to get a shot in the arm and have their ever increasing concerns placated.

12 Year Old Girls Stab Friend To Please Slender Man

By Stefan Matias Kløvning

Wis., United States – It has been three years since Anissa Weier, and Morgan Geiser, now both 15, stabbed their friend Paython Leitner 19 times during a sleepover before leaving her to die in the woods. They later told investigators that they had done this “to please Slender Man,” referring to the internet game with a plot of walking through the dark woods without being killed by the character called “Slenderman.” The girls said they believed Slender Man would kill their families if they didn’t fulfill the task.

Anissa was sentenced on Thursday to at least three years at Winnebago Mental Health Institute for three years, and being under state supervision for 25 years. Geyser plead guilty to the original charge, with potential of 45 years in prison, but the prosecutors concluded with her not being guilty due to mental disease or defect. Geyser was diagnosed with schizophrenia in 2014.

Geyser also eventually was committed to a state mental hospital, but did not get it before proceeding with a different judge even though she was diagnosed early. Weier has been held on $500,000 bail at a West Bend juvenile jail, and her family members visit nearly every day.

US Employees Get Big Bonuses Due To Massive Tax Cuts

By Asish Samson

In a huge boost to the American economy and the American worker several American businesses have announced significant bonuses to its workers after Trump’s historic Tax Cuts and Jobs Act was passed by the senate on Tuesday night. Seven American businesses have already declared the bonus and more are sure to follow.

AT&T have already announced a 1000$ bonus to about 200,000 workers which would received in time for the Christmas holidays. They further stated their intention to invest an additional 1 Billion dollars in the US in 2018. Randall Stephenson, Chairman and CEO of AT&T has praised the Tax reform saying that it would “ drive economic growth and create good paying jobs”.

Boeing immediately announced a 300 million dollar investment divided into three areas. 100 million would go for workforce development including skill development and training, 100 million would go for workplace development and infrastructure and 100 million would be used for corporate giving including donations to veterans, military and charities. The CEO of Boeing also praised the tax reform saying that it would “sustain long term growth” to the company.

Wells Fargo announced a hike in minimum hourly pay to 15$ while pledging 400 million dollars to philanthropic causes. The Fifth Third Bancorp, an Ohio based bank had declared a 1000$ bonus to 13,500 of its employees while also raising the minimum wage to 15$. Comcast also announced a 1000$ bonus to 100,000 of its workers while pledging a 50 Billion dollars to infrastructure. Several others companies have also announced various bonuses and salary hikes.

While many American workers and middle class families would surely welcome this tax bill, The usual Democrats and liberals immediately took to their favourite mainstream media channels and social media to claim the usual “ GOP robbed the middle class and gave to poor” and how it would “destroy” America and also “kill” Americans though none of them could explain how the middle class getting to keep more of their hard earned money would destroy or kill anyone. The hashtag #Taxscam was trended on Twitter by the liberals to claim how Trump apparently “scammed” the whole nation even though tax bill raised wages and created more jobs and investments in the USA. Not one Democratic politician voted for the bill. Democratic party, the self proclaimed party of the “poor and middle class”, The party which was in power for the previous 8 years when the middle class and the poor lost more and more jobs and the country got more and more in debt, the Party of the President who claimed “ nothing could be done” about loss of jobs to other countries has repeatedly opposed the Bill. Now they seem to have realised that Trump had actually done something for the people, they have immediately taken to spreading false propaganda about the bill. No matter how hard the Democrats, the media and social media try to propagate this, the American middle class will see the difference in their pay checks and the creation of new jobs. The new tax bill is expected to put an average of 3000$ in the average middle class household.

Trump’s Tax Cut Includes Almost Every Bracket

By Steven E. White

American Congress approved a sweeping tax cut, proposed by Trump last Thursday, the 14th, which will take effect during the start of 2018. Taxes will be cut for corporations, small business, and individual income, projecting a reduce in federal revenue by 3 trillion over a decade.

The tax cut bill passed Wednesday morning, of the 20th of December, as an early Christmas present to America. Trump has promised that the American people will keep more of their hard-earned money, and create countless new jobs. The bill also eliminates the mandate to buy health insurance and cuts the corporate rate from 35% to 21%.

For individual filers, the rates have decreased, or stayed the same, depending on your bracket. The bracket change goes as follows, starting with the top:

39.6% to 37%
35% to 35%
33% to 32%
28% to 24%
25% to 22%
15% to 12%
10% to 10%

Trump took to Twitter, condemning ‘fake news’ while promising positive results, “The Tax Cuts are so large and so meaningful, and yet the Fake News is working overtime to follow the lead of their friends, the defeated Dems, and only demean. This is truly a case where the results will speak for themselves, starting very soon. Jobs, Jobs, Jobs!”

With the tax cuts making life easier on entrepreneurs, it’d be a surprise if the bill didn’t create more jobs. Like always, and unsurprisingly, the left continues to bash Trump’s every move, desperately seeking fault. Democratic House Leader, Nancy Pelosi states the bill will, “Come back to haunt them, as Frankenstein did.” They claim the bill will help the top 1% more than the poor, or middle class.

I guess this is true in the simple sense that, because rich people make more money, they pay more money to taxes; thus saving them a greater amount of money, compared to the average american, when the tax is cut. Still though, the tax rate for the top was only cut from about 39% to 37%.

In a sad, but laughable, attempt to continue to mislead their readers, CNN insinuates that Trump purposely targeted democrat voting states like California and New York. They stated, “The repeal of the state and local tax deduction will mainly hurt upper middle income earners in states with high income taxes — which means California, New York and Illinois.” But where’s the hurt? The only two brackets that didn’t get reduced taxes were the 35% and 10%. They aren’t hurt if everyone around them is benefitted; in fact I’d say they’re benefitted, not directly from a tax reduction that doesn’t affect them, but from the new jobs that’ll be created under small businesses.

CNN concluded, “And so the final question is: Is it really fair that millions of working parents, single and otherwise, should see their taxes increase to help finance a massive tax cut for hundreds of multimillionaire morons?”

Pardon? Where’s the tax increase? I don’t see one for any bracket. As far as families and parents go, “single or otherwise,” the tax credit for every child under 17 increased from $1,000, to $2,000.

Trump keeps giving to the American people, who gain more and more gratitude for his efforts as he serves this term in office.