63 thoughts on “News/Politics 1-20-17

  1. LOL! Thanks for the laugh…the first of many, no doubt.

    Ok I’ll confess, although I have some work that must get done today, I’m still going to run the tv or live-stream at least until the parade. I’m hoping there is no rain, but bad weather could be a blessing in disguise— snowflakes melt in the rain. ;–)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ll hear part of the inauguration on the radio during my commute to work (we start and finish late) but then it will be on the newsroom television (it is NEWS), eliciting all kinds of commentary and angst, I’m sure. 🙂

    The local Democratic club announced plans for their meeting on Monday, meanwhile — the them is “Post-Trump Blues” and where do we go from here. They’re meeting at a local diner where “comfort food” will be served.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Warning: Fashion post:
    President Obama and Michelle look very nice as they welcome the future occupants. But that periwinkle blue suit with matching gloves Melania is wearing is just to DIE for! Be still my heart!

    (Of course, I also swooned over Michelle’s green outfit worn at the first Obama inauguration. )

    Liked by 3 people

  4. rw: No, we haven’t yet been able to visit the Klementinum library. Even after all these years, we haven’t been able to really explore Prague. Most of the missionaries who come to the CR settle in Prague, but we have always lived in South Bohemia (the most unreached area of the country). When our children were young, we just didn’t have many opportunities to travel much except for visiting family abroad.

    So the Klementinum is definitely on the “to do” list… if you ever make it over here, we can go together!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I haven’t seen them yet. But I will.
    The quote above was not Trump’s. I know because he wouldn’t have said “fantastic ability” He says”unbelievable ability”.

    There are certain clues you watch for.


  6. Always go back to the source document. A house divided cannot stand,

    Mark 3:25King James Version (KJV)

    25 And if a house be divided against itself, that house cannot stand.

    Abraham Lincoln:
    Mr. President and Gentlemen of the Convention.

    If we could first know where we are, and whither we are tending, we could then better judge what to do, and how to do it.

    We are now far into the fifth year, since a policy was initiated, with the avowed object, and confident promise, of putting an end to slavery agitation.

    Under the operation of that policy, that agitation has not only, not ceased, but has constantly augmented.

    In my opinion, it will not cease, until a crisis shall have been reached, and passed.

    “A house divided against itself cannot stand.”

    I believe this government cannot endure, permanently half slave and half free.

    I do not expect the Union to be dissolved — I do not expect the house to fall — but I do expect it will cease to be divided.

    It will become all one thing or all the other.

    Either the opponents of slavery, will arrest the further spread of it, and place it where the public mind shall rest in the belief that it is in the course of ultimate extinction; or its advocates will push it forward, till it shall become alike lawful in all the States, old as well as new — North as well as South.

    Have we no tendency to the latter condition?

    Let any one who doubts, carefully contemplate that now almost complete legal combination — piece of machinery so to speak — compounded of the Nebraska doctrine, and the Dred Scott decision. Let him consider not only what work the machinery is adapted to do, and how well adapted; but also, let him study the history of its construction, and trace, if he can, or rather fail, if he can, to trace the evidence of design and concert of action, among its chief architects, from the beginning.

    But, so far, Congress only, had acted; and an indorsement by the people, real or apparent, was indispensable, to save the point already gained, and give chance for more.

    The new year of 1854 found slavery excluded from more than half the States by State Constitutions, and from most of the national territory by congressional prohibition.

    Four days later, commenced the struggle, which ended in repealing that congressional prohibition.

    This opened all the national territory to slavery, and was the first point gained.

    This necessity had not been overlooked; but had been provided for, as well as might be, in the notable argument of “squatter sovereignty,” otherwise called “sacred right of self government,” which latter phrase, though expressive of the only rightful basis of any government, was so perverted in this attempted use of it as to amount to just this: That if any one man, choose to enslave another, no third man shall be allowed to object.

    That argument was incorporated into the Nebraska bill itself, in the language which follows: “It being the true intent and meaning of this act not to legislate slavery into any Territory or state, not to exclude it therefrom; but to leave the people thereof perfectly free to form and regulate their domestic institutions in their own way, subject only to the Constitution of the United States.”

    Then opened the roar of loose declamation in favor of “Squatter Sovereignty,” and “Sacred right of self-government.”

    “But,” said opposition members, “let us be more specific — let us amend the bill so as to expressly declare that the people of the territory may exclude slavery.” “Not we,” said the friends of the measure; and down they voted the amendment.

    While the Nebraska Bill was passing through congress, a law case involving the question of a negroe’s freedom, by reason of his owner having voluntarily taken him first into a free state and then a territory covered by the congressional prohibition, and held him as a slave, for a long time in each, was passing through the U.S. Circuit Court for the District of Missouri; and both Nebraska bill and law suit were brought to a decision in the same month of May, 1854. The negroe’s name was “Dred Scott,” which name now designates the decision finally made in the case.

    Before the then next Presidential election, the law case came to, and was argued in, the Supreme Court of the United States; but the decision of it was deferred until after the election. Still, before the election, Senator Trumbull, on the floor of the Senate, requests the leading advocate of the Nebraska bill to state his opinion whether the people of a territory can constitutionally exclude slavery from their limits; and the latter answers: “That is a question for the Supreme Court.”

    The election came. Mr. Buchanan was elected, and the indorsement, such as it was, secured. That was the second point gained. The indorsement, however, fell short of a clear popular majority by nearly four hundred thousand votes, and so, perhaps, was not overwhelmingly reliable and satisfactory.

    The outgoing President, in his last annual message, as impressively as possible, echoed back upon the people the weight and authority of the indorsement.

    The Supreme Court met again; did not announce their decision, but ordered a re-argument.

    The Presidential inauguration came, and still no decision of the court; but the incoming President, in his inaugural address, fervently exhorted the people to abide by the forthcoming decision, whatever might be.

    Then, in a few days, came the decision.

    The reputed author of the Nebraska Bill finds an early occasion to make a speech at this capital indorsing the Dred Scott Decision, and vehemently denouncing all opposition to it.

    The new President, too, seizes the early occasion of the Silliman letter to indorse and strongly construe that decision, and to express his astonishment that any different view had ever been entertained.

    At length a squabble springs up between the President and the author of the Nebraska Bill, on the mere question of fact, whether the Lecompton constitution was or was not, in any just sense, made by the people of Kansas; and in that squabble the latter declares that all he wants is a fair vote for the people, and that he cares not whether slavery be voted down or voted up. I do not understand his declaration that he cares not whether slavery be voted down or voted up, to be intended by him other than as an apt definition of the policy he would impress upon the public mind — the principle for which he declares he has suffered much, and is ready to suffer to the end.

    And well may he cling to that principle. If he has any parental feeling, well may he cling to it. That principle, is the only shred left of his original Nebraska doctrine. Under the Dred Scott decision, “squatter sovereignty” squatted out of existence, tumbled down like temporary scaffolding — like the mould at the foundry served through one blast and fell back into loose sand — helped to carry an election, and then was kicked to the winds. His late joint struggle with the Republicans, against the Lecompton Constitution, involves nothing of the original Nebraska doctrine. That struggle was made on a point, the right of a people to make their own constitution, upon which he and the Republicans have never differed.

    The several points of the Dred Scott decision, in connection with Senator Douglas’ “care-not” policy, constitute the piece of machinery, in its present state of advancement. This was the third point gained.

    \ The working points of that machinery are:

    First, that no negro slave, imported as such from Africa, and no descendant of such slave can ever be a citizen of any State, in the sense of that term as used in the Constitution of the United States.

    This point is made in order to deprive the negro, in every possible event, of the benefit of this provision of the United States Constitution, which declares that–

    “The citizens of each State shall be entitled to all privileges and immunities of citizens in the several States.”

    Secondly, that “subject to the Constitution of the United States,” neither Congress nor a Territorial Legislature can exclude slavery from any United States Territory.

    This point is made in order that individual men may fill up the territories with slaves, without danger of losing them as property, and thus to enhance the chances of permanency to the institution through all the future.

    Thirdly, that whether the holding a negro in actual slavery in a free State, makes him free, as against the holder, the United States courts will not decide, but will leave to be decided by the courts of any slave State the negro may be forced into by the master.

    This point is made, not to be pressed immediately; but, if acquiesced in for a while, and apparently indorsed by the people at an election, then to sustain the logical conclusion that what Dred Scott’s master might lawfully do with Dred Scott, in the free State of Illinois, every other master may lawfully do with any other one, or one thousand slaves, in Illinois, or in any other free State.

    Auxiliary to all this, and working hand in hand with it, the Nebraska doctrine, or what is left of it, is to educate and mould public opinion, at least Northern public opinion, to not care whether slavery is voted down or voted up.

    This shows exactly where we now are; and partially, also, whither we are tending.

    It will throw additional light on the latter, to go back, and run the mind over the string of historical facts already stated. Several things will now appear less dark and mysterious than they did when they were transpiring. The people were to be left “perfectly free” “subject only to the Constitution.” What the Constitution had to do with it, outsiders could not then see. Plainly enough now, it was an exactly fitted niche, for the Dred Scott decision to afterward come in, and declare the perfect freedom of the people, to be just no freedom at all.

    Why was the amendment, expressly declaring the right of the people to exclude slavery, voted down? Plainly enough now, the adoption of it would have spoiled the niche for the Dred Scott decision.

    Why was the court decision held up? Why even a Senator’s individual opinion withheld, till after the presidential election? Plainly enough now, the speaking out then would have damaged the “perfectly free” argument upon which the election was to be carried.

    Why the outgoing President’s felicitation on the indorsement? Why the delay of a reargument? Why the incoming President’s advance exhortation in favor of the decision?

    These things look like the cautious patting and petting of a spirited horse, preparatory to mounting him, when it is dreaded that he may give the rider a fall.

    And why the hasty after indorsements of the decision by the President and others?

    We can not absolutely know that all these exact adaptations are the result of preconcert. But when we see a lot of framed timbers, different portions of which we know have been gotten out at different times and places and by different workmen — Stephen, Franklin, Roger, and James, for instance — and when we see these timbers joined together, and see they exactly make the frame of a house or a mill, all the tenons and mortices exactly fitting, and all the lengths and proportions of the different pieces exactly adapted to their respective places, and not a piece too many or too few — not omitting even scaffolding — or, if a single piece be lacking, we can see the place in the frame exactly fitted and prepared to yet bring such piece in — in such a case, we find it impossible not to believe that Stephen and Franklin and Roger and James all understood one another from the beginning, and all worked upon a common plan or draft drawn up before the first lick was struck.

    It should not be overlooked that, by the Nebraska Bill, the people of a State, as well as Territory, were to be left “perfectly free” “subject only to the Constitution.”

    Why mention a State? They were legislating for territories, and not for or about States. Certainly the people of a State are and ought to be subject to the Constitution of the United States; but why is mention of this lugged into this merely territorial law? Why are the people of a territory and the people of a state therein lumped together, and their relation to the Constitution therein treated as being precisely the same?

    While the opinion of the Court, by Chief Justice Taney, in the Dred Scott case, and the separate opinions of all the concurring Judges, expressly declare that the Constitution of the United States neither permits Congress nor a Territorial legislature to exclude slavery from any United States territory, they all omit to declare whether or not the same Constitution permits a state, or the people of a State, to exclude it.

    Possibly, this is a mere omission; but who can be quite sure, if McLean or Curtis had sought to get into the opinion a declaration of unlimited power in the people of a state to exclude slavery from their limits, just as Chase and Macy sought to get such declaration, in behalf of the people of a territory, into the Nebraska bill — I ask, who can be quite sure that it would not have been voted down, in the one case, as it had been in the other.

    The nearest approach to the point of declaring the power of a State over slavery, is made by Judge Nelson. He approaches it more than once, using the precise idea, and almost the language too, of the Nebraska act. On one occasion his exact language is, “except in cases where the power is restrained by the Constitution of the United States, the law of the State is supreme over the subject of slavery within its jurisdiction.”

    In what cases the power of the states is so restrained by the U.S. Constitution, is left an open question, precisely as the same question, as to the restraint on the power of the territories was left open in the Nebraska act. Put that and that together, and we have another nice little niche, which we may, ere long, see filled with another Supreme Court decision, declaring that the Constitution of the United States does not permit a state to exclude slavery from its limits.

    And this may especially be expected if the doctrine of “care not whether slavery be voted down or voted up, shall gain upon the public mind sufficiently to give promise that such a decision an be maintained when made.

    Such a decision is all that slavery now lacks of being alike lawful in all the States.

    Welcome, or unwelcome, such decision is probably coming, and will soon be upon us, unless the power of the present political dynasty shall be met and overthrown.

    We shall lie down pleasantly dreaming that the people of Missouri are on the verge of making their State free; and we shall awake to the reality, instead, that the Supreme Court has made Illinois a slave State.

    To meet and overthrow the power of that dynasty, is the work now before all those who would prevent that consummation.

    This is what we have to do.

    But how can we best do it?

    There are those who denounce us openly to their own friends, and yet whisper us softly, that Senator Douglas is the aptest instrument there is, with which to effect that object. They wish us to infer all, from the facts, that he now has a little quarrel with the present head of the dynasty; and that he has regularly voted with us, on a single point, upon which, he and we, have never differed.

    They remind us that he is a great man, and that the largest of us are very small ones. Let this be granted. But “a living dog is better than a dead lion.” Judge Douglas, if not a dead lion for this work, is at least a caged and toothless one. How can he oppose the advances of slavery? He don’t care anything about it. His avowed mission is impressing the “public heart” to care nothing about it.

    A leading Douglas Democratic newspaper thinks Douglas’ superior talent will be needed to resist the revival of the African slave trade.

    Does Douglas believe an effort to revive that trade is approaching? He has not said so. Does he really think so? But if it is, how can he resist it? For years he has labored to prove it a sacred right of white men to take negro slaves into the new territories. Can he possibly show that it is less a sacred right to buy them where they can be bought cheapest? And, unquestionably they can be bought cheaper in Africa than in Virginia.

    He has done all in his power to reduce the whole question of slavery to one of a mere right of property; and as such, how can he oppose the foreign slave trade — how can he refuse that trade in that “property” shall be “perfectly free” — unless he does it as a protection to the home production? And as the home producers will probably not ask the protection, he will be wholly without a ground of opposition.

    Senator Douglas holds, we know, that a man may rightfully be wiser to-day than he was yesterday — that he may rightfully change when he finds himself wrong.

    But can we, for that reason, run ahead, and infer that he will make any particular change, of which he, himself, has given no intimation? Can we safely base our action upon any such vague inference?

    Now, as ever, I wish not to misrepresent Judge Douglas’ position, question his motives, or do ought that can be personally offensive to him.

    Whenever, if ever, he and we can come together on principle so that our great cause may have assistance from his great ability, I hope to have interposed no adventitious obstacle.

    But clearly, he is not now with us — he does not pretend to be — he does not promise to ever be.

    Our cause, then, must be intrusted to, and conducted by its own undoubted friends — those whose hands are free, whose hearts are in the work — who do care for the result.

    Two years ago the Republicans of the nation mustered over thirteen hundred thousand strong.

    We did this under the single impulse of resistance to a common danger, with every external circumstance against us.

    Of strange, discordant, and even, hostile elements, we gathered from the four winds, and formed and fought the battle through, under the constant hot fire of a disciplined, proud, and pampered enemy.

    Did we brave all then to falter now? — now — when that same enemy is wavering, dissevered and belligerent?

    The result is not doubtful. We shall not fail — if we stand firm, we shall not fail.

    Wise councils may accelerate or mistakes delay it, but, sooner or later the victory is sure to come.


  7. http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2017/01/20/three-things-every-christian-owes-president-trump.html

    … We should be careful not to get so caught up in discussion and debate that we forget to appeal to the King who rules over the world’s rulers. “A king’s heart is like streams of water in the Lord’s hand: he directs it wherever He chooses” (Prov 22:1). Rather than trusting in a new President or in an opposing political party, we should be trusting the One in whose hands they govern. …

    … As Christians, we know that Christ was raised from the dead and that he will return one day to set the world aright. Having this knowledge, we as Christians should serve our nation by being the heart and strength of every good movement of social, cultural, or political concern. But we can’t be the heart and strength of any good movement if our public life is characterized by cynical opposition, naïve optimism, or apathetic spirituality.

    So the ball is in our court. Let’s give President Trump our benefit of the doubt, our honest criticism, and our consistent prayers.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. That’s the first of his speeches that I’ve listened to. 🙂

    The kids at home and I watched the inauguration. I wish I could describe the look on 5th Arrow’s face when they announced Donald J. Trump as the 45th president of the United States. My son LOVES studying up on the presidents, and now there’s a new one! A big grin crossed his face, he looked down and simultaneously pumped his fist forward. 🙂

    Meanwhile, you may recall that we had a presidential election at our house a couple months ago as well, and 6th Arrow announced that two dinosaurs were elected president and vice president. (Other plastic animals besides dinos ran, too, but they didn’t win.)

    President Marisa and Vice President Fourt were sworn in around 11:00 a.m. Central Time today, with a big entourage of other dinosaurs (rather a partisan gathering, wouldn’t you say? — I didn’t see any other animals) gathered for the festivities. 🙂

    Just about time to head upstairs now for the inaugural feast of baked spaghetti, bread sticks and jello. 😀

    Liked by 2 people

  9. I was not a fan of the speech. I am a fan of pointing people forward and encouraging good behavior without running down anyone. There is a time for pointing out differences and what you consider errors and wrong. I do not think this was the time and place, however.

    I do have to say that we did see the benefit of proper etiquette today: Whatever anyone thought of anyone else, they were all civil and polite.

    Liked by 4 people

  10. From Facebook, author unknown. 🙂

    Twas the night before Inauguration, and up in the tower, The Donald reflected on his newfound power.
    The conservative masses had come out in force, And delivered a victory that would chart a new course.
    The snowflakes were shell-shocked with tears in their eyes, The media lied to them . . . What a surprise.
    They had been promised a Hillary win,
    But the criminal Clinton took one on the chin.
    And though from all corners celebrities flew, They made no impression, for they hadn’t a clue.
    They talked about climate, racism, and such,
    And they made up good stories . . . But didn’t know much.
    The fake news and ignorance came at a cost, And they can’t understand all the reasons they lost. They blame it on Comey and Bernie and Vlad,
    But fail to acknowledge the one that was bad.
    Yes, Hillary Clinton, in many ways flawed, Was her own biggest hurdle toward getting the nod. The campaign exposed her corruptness and greed,
    And her speeches were punch-less as ten dollar weed.
    So out in the streets there arose such a clatter, It was Soros-paid protestors and Black Lives Matter. With cities to pillage and windows to smash, They knew not the issues, but needed the cash.
    Eight years of Obama had given them cause, To expect a replacement of their Santa Claus. But soon the protestors will feel the pain, When the wheels fall off of the old gravy train.
    And now all the snowflakes are riddled with fear, Upset and offended by things that they’ll hear. The cocoa and crayons will help for a while, But fact-based opinions will soon cramp their style.
    I originally supported, and voted, for Cruz, In the end, I would vote for whoever they choose. He wasn’t my first choice, but soon I would cede,
    The one they call Trump is the one that we need.
    I saw him on TV in front of a crowd,
    He spoke about veterans, it made me feel proud. He spoke about energy, safety, and jobs, Taking this country back from the Washington snobs.
    He was dressed in Armani, all tailored and neat, And the Brunos he wore made the outfit complete. For a man of his vintage, he seemed rather fit,
    And he looked presidential, I have to admit.
    His eyes glowed like embers, his smile was the best, And his hair was the color of my old hunting vest. His love for this country was on full display,
    And his actions spoke louder than his words could say.
    He thanked all his voters, and before he was gone, Saved thousands of jobs while Obama looked on. The fate of this country left nothing to chance,
    So, he filled out his cabinet weeks in advance.
    The men he had chosen were of the same mind, Let’s set the bar high, and not lead from behind. He picked up his phone as he rose from his seat,
    With a flick of his finger, he sent out this tweet; “Now Mattis!, now Kelly!’ now Sessions! And Pruitt! On Perry! On Flynn, You’re the ones who can do it.
    Start lifting restrictions and building the wall, Now dash away! Dash away! Dash away all!”; The roar of his audience rose from the stands,
    He kissed all their babies and shook all their hands. He answered their questions and calmed all their fears,
    They knew it would be a fantastic four years. Then he jumped in his limo, and off to his jet, A fellow that Liberals won’t soon forget.
    He sent one more tweet as the evening expired; “Happy Inauguration to all, AND OBAMA – YOU’RE FIRED!”
    Author Unknown


  11. I agree Melania’s dress was gorgeous. My husband commented on her super-high heels (I can’t wear high heels) and I told him that head to toe she was wearing many thousands of dollars.(Probably more than I’ve spent on clothes in my whole life, actually.)

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Yes, most husbands would be astounded that anyone would spend that kind of money on clothes. It helps to have all the designers at your fingertips, too. Living in that kind of fishbowl would be very difficult, IMO, though.


  13. One thing I don’t think anyone mentioned in all the lead-up to the election, or today: Trump, 70, is almost a year older than Reagan at his first inauguration! (Hillary is just slightly younger than Reagan, Bernie five years older–we were set on having an old president this time as the youngest, Hillary, the youngest, will be 70 in October!)

    I thought the speech bold and actually pretty good. He did say it’s a new day, but he didn’t name any names. He took the opposite approach from the one Reagan took, but I think with a bit the same approach. Reagan said “Look, pessimistic Carter has harmed us; it’s a new day in Washington!” Trump said, “Look, Obama has been fiddling while America burns, and it’s a new day in Washington!” But both said “Things have been bad, going in the wrong direction, and I’m here to right this ship.”

    I’m less than convinced he can do it, and still glad I chose not to vote for him. But I’m interested to see how the next four years play out. If he’s still around and running again in four years, I’ll decide then whether to vote for him. For now, I’m willing to pray for him and give him a chance.

    BTW, we heard fireworks during his speech, so some people in rural Indiana are happy today. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  14. The pick is in….. almost.


    “Gotta be William Pryor, right? Read this from Tuesday night for some of the many tea leaves pointing in his direction. I didn’t even mention everything working in Pryor’s favor in that post: He’s a protege of Jeff Sessions, which means one of Trump’s top advisors turned AG has probably been pitching Pryor to him for months. He and Diane Sykes of Wisconsin have looked to be the two frontrunners for a year now, ever since Trump mentioned them by name at one of the GOP primary debates. Only Pryor has met recently with Trump, though, from what I can tell. The AP reported a few days ago that the two huddled at Trump Tower on Saturday; I can’t find any similar reports online about a meeting with Sykes. It stands to reason that Trump would want one final interview with Pryor before committing to him; the fact that he told people today that he thinks he’s settled on a choice so soon after the meeting means Pryor is almost certainly the pick. The only hitch is that Second Amendment ruling that came down this morning from the Seventh Circuit striking down Chicago’s restriction on gun ranges. The author of that decision? Why, Diane Sykes. It’s possible that Trump was alluding to her and the cheers she’s getting today from conservatives when he mentioned the excitement his pick will generate, but like I say, until we hear that she met with him, one has to assume that Pryor is the pick. Sykes would be the heavy favorite for the second vacancy on the Court.”


  15. Re. Pres Trump’s speech, he hit on a lot of his campaign promises with real conviction, though a few lines could have been said with more humility (such as, “I will never let you down”). His not-politics-as-usual platitude and serve-the-people attitude are certainly refreshing if followed through – we’ll see.

    I heard that the ceremony included a record (six?) number of Biblical references.


  16. And all they have to say for themselves is….. ooops?



    “Hey, $1.9 billion here, $1.9 billion there … pretty soon you’re talking about entirely imaginary numbers. That’s the message that Governor Jerry Brown’s administration sent to the California legislature when they admitted that they had miscalculated their expenditures in the state’s Medicaid program, known as Medi-Cal. The admission came during the new round of budget negotiations, even though the mistake had been known for months:

    Gov. Jerry Brown’s administration miscalculated costs for the state Medi-Cal program by $1.9 billion last year, an oversight that contributed to Brown’s projection of a deficit in the upcoming budget, officials acknowledged this week.”

    “There’s no other way to describe this other than a straight up error in accounting, which we deeply regret,” said H.D. Palmer, a spokesman for the Department of Finance.

    So why didn’t the Brown administration notify the legislature immediately? According to the governor’s office, errors traditionally get mitigated in the next budget cycle. Well, okay, but that would apply to errors of a small scale, wouldn’t it? A budget hole this size might prompt the legislature to fix the problems early and limit the damage. Instead, California spent more than it should, and now has to make up the money.

    That’s actually not the only problem with the budget, as the Associated Press explains in this report. Not only did California spend more than it projected on Medi-Cal, it also took in quite a bit less than it projected in tax revenues. According to the revenue estimates in Brown’s proposed budget will miss by almost six billion dollars over three budget cycles:”

    “Figure REV‑01 compares the revenue forecasts, by source, in the 2016 Budget Act and the Governor’s Budget. Revenue, including transfers, is expected to be $119 billion in 2016‑17 and $124 billion in 2017‑18. The projected decrease since the 2016 Budget Act is due to a lower forecast for all three major revenue sources. Over the three fiscal years, personal income tax is down $2.1 billion, sales tax is down $1.9 billion, and corporation tax is down $1.7 billion.

    So much for that booming economy that the media insists that Donald Trump will inherit from Barack Obama tomorrow. California’s pursuit of progressive social and economic policies have worked their usual miracle of draining growth from what should be dynamic economic environments.”


  17. I was thinking this as I watched this morning:

    Melania Trump channels Jackie Kennedy in Ralph Lauren outfit



    (CNN)Melania Trump stepped out in a powder blue Ralph Lauren outfit that harkened back to Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis’ iconic style.

    She also wore matching shoes and gloves.

    Her look drew comparisons to the powder blue outfit Jackie Kennedy wore to her husband’s inauguration in 1961. …

    Liked by 2 people

  18. Again, it’s part of his appeal, it’s not me and I, or about tooting his own horn. It’s us and we, as it should be. A small thing, but it matters.


    “President Donald Trump focused his inaugural address on ‘we’ the American people, leaving himself out of the speech almost entirely.”

    “In contrast to his predecessor Barack Obama, who had a habit of mentioning himself often throughout his speeches, Trump mentioned himself just three times in two sentences, while referring to “we” the American people 45 times.

    The first time Trump referred to himself came about halfway through the speech, when he said: “The oath of office I take today is an oath of allegiance to all Americans.””


  19. Some will be upset by this.


    “President-elect Donald Trump will set a record with the amount of prayers during his inaugural ceremonies Friday.

    Trump, who is starting the day at St. John’s Church for a service at 8:30 a.m., will have six religious prayers as part of the ceremony, three invocations and three benedictions.

    That’s a record, according to Jim Bendat, the author of “Democracy’s Big Day,” who was speaking on CNN Friday morning.”

    And some will take heat for what they said during those prayers, etc., like Trump and this guy. And a large amount of that heat will come from other Christians, I’m sure.


    “Trump also touched on religion in his speech, saying, “We will be protected by God.”

    Following Trump’s first address as president, Rev. Franklin Graham referenced that it started to rain when Trump stepped to the podium and that rain is a sign of God’s blessing.

    “In the Bible, rain is the sign of God’s blessing, and it started to rain, Mr. President, when you came to the platform,” Graham said.”


  20. Well, was it theologically accurate to say that the rain at the inauguration was a sign of God’s blessing? If it wasn’t – and it isn’t since God sends rain on the just and the unjust (Matthew 5:45) – then Graham was engaging in flattery. He can engage in flattery if he wants, but he should be careful about dragging God into it. People who proclaim things in God’s name that God never told them to say only bring trouble on themselves and others. See also I Kings 22, where all the false prophets said that the Lord would help Ahab win the battle, and Jeremiah 28, where the false prophet Hananiah said God would free Judah from Babylon – it was not a good ending for either claim.

    Liked by 2 people

  21. Well, Trump did give recognition to former President Clinton and Mrs. Clinton. He thanked them for accepting the invitation to the luncheon and asked everyone to stand and thank them. The standing ovation was respectful and appropriate.

    We do have a lot to be thankful for in the transition process regardless. There are some protesters several blocks from the parade route, but the ‘mayhem’ is relatively minor—especially considering the rhetorical build-up.

    Liked by 4 people

  22. I read that he whispered to the Hildebeast and thanked her for coming.
    The “open minded and accepting” side is already posting boycotts of Ralph Lauren


  23. Maybe the Trumps should order from all kinds of people and then charge them with discrimination when they refuse. Sorry, just could not resist. The hypocrisy never ceases to amaze me.

    Liked by 2 people

  24. I read Matt Damon is giving Trump a chance. There is actually a big opportunity for agendas to overlap with some liberal causes, I think—perhaps with regard to infrastructure or humanitarian issues. Trump is not a true party partisan, and that will show sooner or later. I think that is a good thing.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. By the way, yes, I did think the speech was arrogant and a bit to isolationist. But he was speaking to people who don’t know if they’ll have a job a year from now, not to the pundits. I think he successfully communicated “A new game is in town.”


  26. roscuro: I think Franklin Graham had more Scriptures on his mind when he made the statement about rain being a sign of God’s blessing. The Bible actually has quite a lot to say in this regard:

    In Deut 11, we read how the land of Canaan would be abundantly supplied with rain (and how rain just after harvest prepares for sowing). In Heb 6, we read how rain makes the earth fruitful. In Ps 68, we read that rain refreshes the earth. In Ps 104, we read how rain replenishes the springs and fountains.

    Amos 4 describes the withholding of rain as punishment from God for sin. When it doesn’t rain, it causes the earth to open up (Job 29), the springs to dry up (I Kin 17), and famine (I Kin 18).

    The primary purpose of rain is restoration and growth. Rain is a reminder of the grace of the Lord (Ps 72:6; Hos 6:3). Gentle rains are a reminder of God’s goodness and are cause for praise (Deut 32:2). Steady, fruitful rains remind us of the righteousness of God as it is demonstrated to us (Hos 10:12). Rain speaks of God refreshing His people spiritually (Ps 68:9; Ez 34:26).

    So in the Scriptures, rain definitely depicts God’s blessing, but mainly they describe who God is and what He does. Probably the best picture of this comes from Is 55:6-11, where it describes the Word as the means of transformation “as the rain comes down.” A great picture of spiritual growth, and it’s good to meditate on how rain works in thinking about that concept.

    Liked by 1 person

  27. Cheryl,

    I think it was directed at those in front of him, the Congress people and Senators in the audience. They are the ones largely responsible for the mess in DC.

    And what was arrogant? The part about it being time our govt stood up for Americans first? Oh, the horror…. 🙄


  28. Did you guys notice this from the Inauguration Benediction:

    “Lord, in the memory of all the saints who from their labors rest, and in the joy of a new beginning, we ask you to help us work for that day when black will not be asked to get in back, when brown can stick around…

    … when yellow will be mellow…


    LOWERY: … when the red man can get ahead, man; and when white will embrace what is right.”

    Oh, I meant from Obama’s inauguration in 2009.

    Liked by 3 people

  29. Tych, those verses – with the exception of the Deuteronomy one, which is talking to the nation of Israel under the Old Covenant – are speaking of rain in general. Christ’s words show that you cannot take the general blessing of rain which both the just and unjust benefit from, and try to use it to say that God is blessing a specific event or person. The rain was a blessing, but it wasn’t blessing the inauguration. The sun is also a blessing spoken of in Scripture, and if a ray of sun had shown from behind the clouds the moment the president came to the podium, it would be silly to say that it was a sign of God’s blessing.

    The Real, those who claim to speak for God are held to greater responsibility and should have their words scrutinized.


  30. Roscuro – I would have to listen to it again, but I didn’t take it as Graham saying that the rain was indeed a direct sign of God’s blessing on Trump, but said it in a more general way. (Don’t know how to exactly explain what I mean.)

    Liked by 3 people

  31. Rain is always a blessing in a dry and thirsty land. Ask Donna.
    I don’t think Graham was making a theological statement. He was making a lighthearted comment to make a good deal of an unfortunate situation.
    Preachers do that.

    Liked by 4 people

  32. roscuro: God provides natural illustrations in His universe so that we will trace what He says in His Word about their spiritual significance. What He teaches us about rain is far more extensive than just what He communicates in Mt 5:45 (which anyway refers to natural blessings (“common grace”), not spiritual ones).

    Yes, the sun can also be a sign of God’s blessing. We thought it was really special when, at our son’s outdoor wedding, just after a downpour, the suns rays broke through the window of the ruin just as we started to worship the Lord in song. I don’t want to be too mystical about such things (and I’m certainly not that type of person), but I do want to be open to what God may be wanting to communicate at such important times.

    I think the point is that we may not know for sure what God is wanting to say at a given moment, if anything, through a sudden change in the weather at a significant event, though we might have a strong impression. I’ll grant you that Rev. Graham could have been more careful with his words (less presumptuous), but will you grant that it could be possible that the rain at that significant moment could be a sign of His blessing? (emphasis on ‘could’)

    Liked by 1 person

  33. It’s so easy to take our peaceful governmental transition for granted. Now there may be some good news about the situation in Gambia. They seem to be close to a resolution regarding the transfer of presidential power.

    BANJUL, Gambia — The Latest on Gambia’s political crisis, sparked by defeated leader Yahya Jammeh’s refusal to leave office (all times local):


    1:05 a.m.

    Mauritania’s president says Gambia’s defeated leader Yahya Jammeh will step down and leave the country.

    President Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz spoke with reporters early Saturday at the airport shortly before boarding his flight home. The Mauritanian leader called it a victory for Gambia. He had been part of talks to try to persuade Jammeh to cede power to Adama Barrow, who won election last month.

    A State House official close to the situation says Jammeh would leave within three days, possibly Saturday with Guinean President Alpha Conde, who was spending the night in Gambia’s capital, Banjul. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not permitted to speak about the situation to press.

    Liked by 2 people

  34. Getting right to work….


    “President Donald Trump wasted no time after his official White House arrival on Friday night, heading straight to the Oval Office where he signed his first executive orders since arriving at the White House.
    President Trump christened the Resolute Desk by signing an order to confirm General James Mattis as Secretary of Defense and another to ‘ease the burden of Obamacare’.
    He has already made changes to the Oval Office decor, swapping its formerly crimson drapes for gold curtains and putting back in their former places busts of former British prime minister Winston Churchill.
    Later, he will attend three inaugural balls with the first lady before spending his first night at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. “


  35. 30 or 40 years ago we bought a house. The first thing we did was go around taking off the “gilded” light switch plates and putting regular ivory plastic ones up instead.

    Liked by 3 people

  36. I would have replaced the ones in the bedrooms with lighted switches. I was going to do that here, but see no need for it.


  37. I’m going with black metal craftsman style switch plates in my house as it gets it’s little makeover — which still has an odd mix of white plastic, chrome and one ceramic (pink floral) switch plate, none of which I really like at all. 🙂 Kept meaning to change them out but never did.

    Liked by 1 person

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