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PTSD: Day One Of The Trump Imperium- FAIL!


      On Day One of the Trump Presidency

      THE INAUGURAL ADDRESS AND THE CROWD THAT WITNESSED IT: Twenty minutes into his presidency, Donald Trump, who is always claiming to have made, or to be about to make, astonishing history, had done so. Living down to expectations, he had delivered the most dreadful inaugural address in history. He also did it before a very small crowd. Despite his predictions that his turnout would top the Obama Turnout in 2009, it looks like he had one of the smaller crowds in modern history. Obama had 1.8 million. Trump had 230,000 yesterday. That's 13 percent of Obama's total!

      How big was the Trump Crowd? Take a Look!

      Obama 2009 11 AM

      Obama 2013 11 AM

      Trump 2017 11 AM

      source: https://www.buzzfeed.com/tamerragriffin/trump-obam...

      Not impressive.....especially in light of the Trump team predictions. Excuses that his supporters "had to work" or "were holding local celebrations" are shallow excuse making. When many of those who voted for you were voted against someone else the support is soft. Polling reveals that Trump has lost nearly 15 percent of his support since the election.

      Bottom Line: The Turnout was Not-At-All impressive considering previous performances.

      Barack Obama, 2009: 1.8 million (generally considered a record for people on the National Mall)

      Barack Obama, 2013: 1 million

      Bill Clinton, 1993: 800,000

      George W. Bush, 2005: 400,000

      George W. Bush, 2001: 300,000

      Donald Trump, 2017 280,000

      George H.W. Bush, 1989: 300,000

      Bill Clinton, 1997: 250,000

      Ronald Reagan, 1985: 140,000 tickets sold, but record cold moved the swearing-in ceremony indoors

      Ronald Reagan, 1981: 10,000, according to the New York Times. This was the first year the ceremony was performed on the west side of the Capitol.


      THE INAUGURAL MESSAGE- "AMERICAN CARNAGE" THAT ONLY HE CAN SAVE THE NATION FROM: Kellyanne Conway, Trump’s White House counselor, had promised that the speech would be “elegant.” This is not the adjective that came to mind as he described “American carnage.” That was a phrase the likes of which has never hitherto been spoken at an inauguration.

      Oblivious to the moment and the setting, the always remarkable Trump proved that he is likely to remain in campaign mode: negative and demeaning. In what should have been a civic celebration serving national unity and promoting confidence, he vindicated his severest critics by serving up reheated campaign rhetoric about “rusted out factories scattered like tombstones across the landscape” and an education system producing students “deprived of all knowledge.” ALL? Really?

      He managed to insult nearly everyone on the platform for their failure (GOP and Dems alike; Congress, Presidents, Governors). ALL HAD FAILED and ONLY HE can rescue the nation.

      AND, he also managed to anger nearly every ally with his statement that only America's needs count. America First is being heralded as a return to American isolation and protectionism.


      Making Home Ownership More Expensive: Trump made it more expensive for working- and middle-class Americans to buy their first homes. The move will increase costs for 750,000 to 850,000 Americans in the next year alone, according to the National Association of Realtors.

      The Obama administration had said last week that the Federal Housing Administration would drop the cost of mortgage insurance it sells by almost a third to 0.60 percent. But after Trump took office, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, which oversees the FHA, informed lenders that the fee cut was off. The reversal of the reduction will mean that homebuyers who borrow $200,000 under the program will see their mortgage insurance fees go up by $500 a year.

      Undercutting ObamaCare's Mandate and Standards (with no replacement in sight): Trump instructed the agency overseeing Obamacare to interpret she laws/regulations loosely ― in ways that could undermine it even before Congress gets around to repealing it.

      This order is basically Trump doing what he can, on his own, to get the process underway.

      “While this executive order doesn’t directly make any changes to the ACA, it directs federal agencies to start unwinding the health law in a variety ways without waiting for Congress,” Larry Levitt, senior vice president at the Henry J. Kaiser Family Health Foundation said.

      Obamacare, which became law in 2010 and took full effect in 2014, has helped narly 20 million Americans to get health insurance, while extending new consumer protections to millions more. Today, the number of people without health insurance is the lowest government agencies have ever recorded.

      But in the process, the law has also caused some people to pay higher premiums or bear greater out-of-pocket costs than they did before because insurance companies did not get the large inflow of the young and healthy thanks to a weak Mandate that let those who chose not to do this slide. The GOP refused to consider any fixes in the law. The Executive Order is expected to further weaken this.

      Obamacare standards have created the most consumer oriented health insurance program in the nation's history. The Executive Order is expected to allow states more freedom in setting up their own (and likely weaker) standards. This will immediately affect Medicaid which serves the poorest citizens.

      These changes will likely further spook insurers already worried they were not attracting as many healthy customers as they thought. The insurers could respond by raising premiums even higher, or by exiting markets altogether.

      The changes to Medicaid that states have sought threaten to reduce the number of people who can get on the program or stay on it, reducing their access to medical care.

      AND LASTLY.....MIA on the White House Website: Gone are sections like “Civil Rights” and “Reducing Gun Violence” replaced by pages like “America First Energy Plan” and “America First Foreign Policy.”

      Certain pages seemed to have disappeared altogether. LGBT Concerns. GONE. Climate Change. GONE. Immigration Reform. GONE.

      What's there. The pages from the Campaign Site regarding the Trump Agenda....with nothing new in regard to any of them. So, not only has the Trump Transition failed to fill the largest number of positions in the federal government in memory but it has failed to develop any policy priorities.



      One of the repliers made this comment: Besides the crowd at the inauguration do you know what else was different? The words I, me and my were rarely heard.

      My Reply:

      Let's look at the numbers shall "we."

      The use of the word "I" and "me." Here is how Trump's use of these words compared to other presidents' first inaugural addresses:

      • Trump: Three.
      • Barack Obama: Three.
      • George W. Bush: Nine.
      • Bill Clinton: Seven.
      • Ronald Reagan: 13.
      • Franklin Delano Roosevelt: 13.
      • Woodrow Wilson: 5.

      The use of the word "we." The term "we" has been far more prevalent in inaugural addresses than "I" or "me":

      • Trump: 34
      • Obama: 42.
      • Bush: 23.
      • Clinton: 30.
      • Reagan: 33.
      • Roosevelt: 19.
      • Wilson: 25.

      Of note "We" can be used broadly to speak of a generation, a nation, a community, or narrowly to refer to the administration of the particular president In Trump's case he used it in the narrow fashion 23 times- i.e. he or his administration. By contrast Obama used "we" in the narrow fashion 11 times in two inaugural addresses.

      Length. In terms of word count, Trump's speech was actually relatively short:

      Word choice. Here are some words that Trump used that haven't been used in previous inaugural addresses:

      References to God. Here are the references to God in Trump's and some previous first-term inaugural addresses:

      • Trump: Five.
      • Obama: Three.
      • Bush: Three.
      • Clinton: One.
      • Reagan: Five.
      • Roosevelt: One.
      • Wilson: Two.

      References to liberty or freedom:

      • Trump: One.
      • Obama: Two.
      • Bush: Two.
      • Clinton: One.
      • Reagan: Eight.
      • Roosevelt: Zero.
      • Wilson: Zero.

      The figures have been taken from transcripts from the Washington Post, ABC News, and the American Presidency Project here, here, here, and here.


      * Until Mr. Trump has earned the title, I will refrain from referring to his as President Trump, or The President, or Mr. President. While I respect the office, my complete lack of respect for him overshadows that historic sentiment. I am open to being surprised. I am also going to bring the same level of energy and purpose to my critique of him that opponents of President Barack H. Obama did during his 8 years as our President.

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      Pundit Post

      President Trump's Two Simple Rules


          In President Trump's Inaugural Speech, he gave us two rules to live by: buy American and hire American. Applause followed. In the new President's attempt to offer the American people a vision, how practical are those rules he proposes? How will current conditions need to be changed? How do we enforce the rules, and how long before that slogan becomes a reality? My guess is never but, in the moment, it sounded pretty good. We'll have a better chance of starting a colony on Mars. We might make our preference an American product or an American worker, but Trump's simple rules are nothing more than an empty slogan.

          Of course, we know that the ideology of an inaugural speech is rarely manifested. President Obama campaigned on the notion that he would change the way Washington worked and he had limited to zero success. Many still hold that against him. Trump did campaign on a platform of making America a manufacturing powerhouse again. He has reiterated that promise by laying down those two rules: buy American, hire American. But there are serious obstacles to this directive. Like Obama, Trump will be faced with a thing called reality. He may not have to push against the obstructionism that Obama faced, but products and trade and how they work globally are more complicated than a 2-rule nationalist solution.

          The premise of Buy American is basically flawed. America cannot produce everything it consumes. We either don't have the natural resources or the climate. We have to import materials from their source. Many products are simply produced elsewhere at a lower cost and these low prices allow Americans to buy products at affordable prices. Even President Trump and Ivanka manufacture their clothing lines abroad and they do that for a reason. It's cheaper and they can provide consumers all over the world with an affordable product. Their reasoning is as old as trade itself.

          We are a nomadic and industrious species. From the trade of obsidian, to silk, from corn to furs, and human traffic, people have sought out and engaged one another to sell and acquire goods at the best possible price. There is profit in trade and it pretty much works the same way today as it always has with one exception. We no longer pay homage to the gods of trade and merchants, Hermes and Mercurius.

          In ancient times, the Greeks hated free trade because they saw the tax dollars as being important to the treasury and national order, just as they are today. This is why Trump is opposed to the TPP that would do away with or reduce tariffs. It's no secret that he wants to impose additional tariffs of 35%. Even our very Progressive Senator Bernie Sanders is opposed to the TPP. http://www.sanders.senate.gov/download/the-trans-p...

          There is an opposing view, however, that elements of free trade will enhance prosperity. Ronald Reagan saw free trade and open borders as being the greater promise for prosperity. https://www.cato.org/publications/commentary/reaga... Reagan's free trade philosophy was called "selective". He was able to pick and choose where he wanted protectionism and where he didn't. We might say Reagan was responsible for the demise of the textile industry in the US and subsequent rusting of the Midwest. Trump, however, prefers to put his ideology firmly behind Pat Buchanan who sees protectionism and isolationism as being generators of prosperity. But even in those prosperous times there was trade and not all products were American made. Furthermore, at that time, the economy also depended on immigration for our labor needs. We still need that labor and always will to some extent.

          These arguments ride on the changing tide of economy and social events. Reagan could promote free trade when the economy was in good shape and technology and cultures were changing and expanding. He could encourage immigration when we needed more labor. When times are hard, austerity and isolationism are favored, more out of fear than being a solution. It's more like hunkering down until a storm passes. I would argue that there is no good time for austerity or isolationism, especially, now and in spite of the "carnage" picture our new President has painted for us. The global economy is too vibrant to close ourselves off from opportunity. There's too much change in technology happening to shut ourselves off from the ideas circulating in a broader world. Buy American when you can afford it, and Hire American if an American wants it. But this is not the time for meaningless slogans in our National dialog.


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          Black Armbands, Flags At Half Mast, For Today Is A Day Of Mourning​​




              Today Donald J. Trump was inaugurated as the country's 45th President of the United States.

              We said good bye to President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle, and we ushered into our government a man who will isolate us from most of the world (Russia is an exception) and promises to dissemble all the good we have built over the past eight years.

              Tomorrow there will be an enormous march that makes its promise to resist this new regime, but today we mourn.

              “We mourn in black” – (Shakespeare)

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              A Mockery Of The Office Of The President Of The United States Of America


                  I write this tonight, January 19, 2017, before Midnight because I intend to boycott everything that I can control, related to the federal government tomorrow, out of respect for the office of the President of The United States of America.

                  I just heard Senator Cory Booker interviewed by Lawrence O'Donnell on MSNBC. Senator Booker said he respects the choice of those federal elected officials who choose to express their freedom of speech by boycotting the inauguration of Donald J Trump as president of The United States of America. However, he chooses to attend the inauguration out of respect for the office of the presidency.

                  In my humble opinion, being an in-person attendant to witness the inauguration of Trump as president of The United States of America is a mockery of that office. I do not agree with or respect everything anyone does. Some people I have great respect for have decided to witness this inauguration. President Obama and others obviously feel they have a duty and responsibility to execute the peaceful transfer of power. I will give President Obama a pass for portraying such a transfer. However, I do not respect this act by President Obama or anyone else.

                  As far as I am concerned, January 20, 2017 will be a day that will live in infamy. It will signify the worst of America. Donald J Trump has disrespected every person (even those who do not realize that disrespect) and every institution in America. This inauguration is tantamount to installing Satan as head of God’s Church. This act represents the most vile thing the human race has ever done. I cannot and will not EVER recognize this person as President of The United States of America. He is a con man and a fraud.

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                  PTSD: Incoming Trump Administration Critically Understaffed


                      Two days and counting......and it is very clear that not only is Trump beginning his presidency without most of his cabinet but he is also beginning his presidency with an enormous number of leadership positions across the government that don't even have nominees. Now this is somewhat understandable given that the Trump campaign really did not have a transition team in place so no work had been done. Trump and his people did not expect to win......but instead of digging in, rolling up their sleeves, and getting down to work in double shifts if needed.....not much was done at all.

                      Tonight, it looks like there could be a war in West Africa over the refusal of Gambia's president, who was defeated for reelection, to vacate the office. Senegal and other nations in the 15 nation alliance are moving military forces into place to depose him. Normally in the United States the National Security Council's West Africa Desk would be working up briefings for the President, Trump, and the National Security Adviser, Flynn. The problem is that on Friday at noon there will be no one at that desk. The Director for that Desk has not been named and that is true of nearly all of the 38 desks in the NSC. Empty.

                      At this point in the Obama administration in 2009, every desk had a director and assistant director. Most had other staff in place- some career office holders and others appointed.

                      The Obama administration has written 275 briefing papers for the incoming Trump administration: nearly 1,000 pages of classified material on North Korea’s nuclear program, the military campaign against the Islamic State, tensions in the South China Sea, and every other kind of threat the new team could face in its first weeks in office. It appears that most of those papers are unread. Certainly they have not been discussed with those who wrote them.

                      Nobody in the current administration knows whether anyone in the next has read any of it.

                      In two days President Obama ceases to be Commander in Chief (which means, among things, that Trump gets the nuclear codes) and Mr. Trump’s transition staff has barely engaged with the current National Security Council below the most senior levels. His designated national security adviser, Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn, has met just four times with his Obama counterpart, Susan E. Rice, most recently on Tuesday afternoon.

                      But the chronic upheaval in Mr. Trump’s transition, a delay in appointing senior National Security Council staff members, and a dearth of people with security clearances have deprived the Trump team of weeks of prep work on some of the most complex national security issues facing the country.

                      Things have settled down in recent days with the arrival of Keith Kellogg, a retired three-star Army general whom Trump named as chief of staff of the N.S.C. last month, and who is now running the transition.

                      Mr. Trump's first contact with the National Security Council did not come until Nov. 22, two weeks after Election Day, an extraordinary delay. That delay was caused by the purging of the Christie transition team. Matthew Freedman, who was then chosen to run the N.S.C. transition quickly came under scrutiny because of his foreign lobbying ties. Mr. Freedman’s replacement, Marshall Billingslea, a former Pentagon and State Department official, arrived in the West Wing with six people, only two of whom had security clearances.

                      The Obama administration began meeting with that team after Thanksgiving, but its lack of clearances meant that Mr. Trump’s emissaries could not read the materials that the Obama people had prepared for them. The N.S.C. began creating unclassified versions of the papers.

                      Then, in mid-December, there was another shake-up when Mr. Billingslea was replaced by General Kellogg, who only began meeting with his Obama counterparts this month.

                      By some accounts, the situation is even more fluid in the State Department and the Pentagon, where the Trump team has devoted almost all of its attention to lining up cabinet secretaries but has done nothing to fill dozens of senior positions requiring Senate confirmation. Officials in the State Department’s transition office said that they had had only intermittent contact with Trump representatives, and that those people often changed.

                      Because none of the jobs on the National Security Council require Senate confirmation, it can in theory be staffed more quickly than other government agencies. Much of the organization’s policy staff is composed of career civil servants, who are lent by their agencies to the White House for a limited term of service. The Trump administration plans to keep on most of these people, as the Obama administration did.

                      But that still leaves a cadre of senior directors and their immediate staffs, who run departments that develop policy on Asia, Western Europe, Russia, cyber security, nonproliferation and other areas. While the Trump team has chosen several senior directors, an official said, it has not yet announced them. And the efforts have been complicated by outside distractions.

                      On Monday, Monica Crowley, a Fox News commentator and writer whom Mr. Trump had named deputy national security adviser for strategic communications, announced that she would not accept the position. The problem is that she has engaged in regular plagiarism. Mr. Trump’s advisers initially defended Ms. Crowley, labeling the plagiarism charges “a politically motivated attack.” But the case was just too strong. How did this happen when those charges had been made a number of times before. Simply put the Trump team had not properly vetted her and this has happened in other appointments as well.

                      There are about 1400 senior positions that Donald Trump needs Senate confirmation to fill. Add in lower-level appointees and White House staff, and the total comes to more than 4,000.

                      “The vast number of political appointments is yet to be made,” says Ambassador Chase Untermeyer who served as director of presidential personnel under George H.W. Bush. Going at the current pace, Untermeyer says it could take at least a year to fill out the ranks of the new administration.

                      Start off with the deputy secretaries. These are the top lieutenants of the cabinet secretaries. Often, they wind up doing much of the work of running their departments. Then come all the assistant and undersecretaries, agency heads and ambassadors.

                      “All those people have to be chosen,” Untermeyer says. “They have to fill out their financial papers, and they have to fill out the personal disclosure forms that tell every job they ever had, every school they ever went to, every foreign country they ever visited, every house they ever lived in.”

                      Trump promised that he would show the nation what it means to lead. When is he going to start?






                      Of note....the day after stories like the one posted here starting making the rounds the Trump transition team started making announcements about hold-over, and beachhead staff that would be coming on line to fill in the gaps in the first months of the Trump administration. It seems the message got through.

                      * Until Mr. Trump has earned the title, I will refrain from referring to his as President Trump, or The President, or Mr. President. While I respect the office, my complete lack of respect for him overshadows that historic sentiment. I am open to being surprised. I am also going to bring the same level of energy and purpose to my critique of him that opponents of President Barack H. Obama did during his 8 years as our President.

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                      Pundit Post

                      Stop The Normalization Of The Abnormal


                          As of late I have noticed some of the best topics to post for discussion doesn't necessarily come from the news media but from some of the posters right here on Yabberz. In our discussions we look at a topic from many diverse perspectives and every once in awhile something is said or posted that really rings a bell and is something news organizations tend to overlook or discuss in any detail. Ive Hadenuff posted a video on another discussion of Keith Olberman discussing why we should boycott the Inauguration but it wasn't the part about boycotting that caught my attention but rather a few words which really strike at the heart of the matter and why I think Trump has been given so many passes. Those few words were, "quit trying to normalize Trump."

                          The main stream media is probably the worst offender when it comes to normalizing someone who is anything but normal. We as a Nation have laws and rules and as a society we supposedly have norms and mores and these attributes combined define what for us would be a standard to determine what is normal and what deviates from the norm.

                          We have had more than enough time to see and hear Trump glorify himself and ridicule, demean and degrade others over and over again. We have seen someone turn into a whiny child who uses the social media, Twitter, to act like a complete imbecile and hurl one vile nasty insulting tweet after another. We have seen a man who stands before his minions and tells them he is the greatest because he knows more about everything then even the experts. Oh, and Trump says he is going to change things and spouts off his usual empty rhetoric without ever detailing exactly how he intends to make those so-called changes. Then there is his constant flip flopping which does nothing except to confuse everyone including his most ardent supporters. We have also seen a man who when legitimately criticized goes ballistic and runs to his Twitter account and attack those who would dare to criticize him. We have seen a man who openly not only despises the media but also his very own Party.

                          Trump wants to desperately be viewed as a man of the people and his base bought into that ruse hook, line and sinker. If Trump were true to his words then why is he packing his top administrative and Cabinet positions with those who only wish to help themselves or are just plain incompetent people who do not have the credentials nor knowledge required to fill those positions?

                          Basically we, the people, have to go back to the basics and take a hard long look at the man, who today, will fill the position of the Presidency. Is this someone who we could actually say is normal who has such an ego and a narcissistic personality that he really feels and thinks he does know more than most which is the furthest thing from the truth. This is not one who should be glorified and put on a pedestal but one who needs to be watched closely and questioned every time he makes a decision. So, in essence what I think we need to stop doing is try to normalize Trump every time he deviates and hold his feet to the fire. Moral to this story...Do not project upon Trump something which does not exist and that would be a sense of Normalcy.

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                          Obama: Still My President And Here's Why!!!


                              On the evening before the last half day of the Obama Administration, I want to say that Barack H. Obama is Still My President. I don't now of Donald Trump ever will be. But tonight I want to celebrate why I regard Barack as someone whom I was proud to work for in one campaign and to support in two campaigns. Barack Obama has been a calm, prudent, intelligent, well-spoken, and empathetic President known to weigh the serious of matters of state very carefully and known to consult widely and respectfully. His accomplishments? Well here is a sampler:

                              • Under President Obama the High School Graduation rate reached a record high of 83.2 percent.
                              • Under President Obama the economic abyss into which the nation seemed to be plunging in 2009 is a receding memory
                                • as unemployment moved from 10 percent in October 2009 to 4.7 percent now
                                • there have been 82 straight months of private sector job growth, the longest streak ever in the history of the nation
                                • the U.S. stock market hit lows of 6547 on March 9, 2009. Today it closed at 19,732
                                • housing starts have quadrupled since the summer of 2009, and foreclosures have been cut by 7/8ths
                              • Under President Obama we put a rover on Mars, and sent 7 rockets into deep space exploration
                              • Under President Obama we have had the first decline in Federal Prison Population in four decades AND he put a stop to the use of private prison industry to house federal prisoners.
                              • Under President Obama homeless among American Veterans dropped by half since 2010, and wait times for service at VA hospitals has dropped by two thirds.
                              • Under President Obama 16 countries around the world gave up every ounce of enriched uranium, the stuff of bombs.
                              • Under President Obama Bi-Annual Nuclear Security Summits were established involving every nuclear power.
                              • Under President Obama credit card reform that keeps companies from raising rates, or killing your credit report was initiated.
                              • Under President Obama discrimination against LGBT employees by federally contracted employers was banned
                              • Under President Obama U.S. dependence on foreign oil was reduced by 60 percent as the renewable energy industry became the fastest growing business sector in America with the potential of creating millions of jobs.
                              • Illegal immigration under Obama/Biden is at a new low
                              • Under President Obama Osama Bin Laden was killed AND his computers raided for what the intelligence community calls Bin Laden's Bookshelf....a treasure trove of priceless info on AQ and other terrorist groups. And that info is now publicly available.
                              • Under President Obama the nations first Chief Technology Officer was appointed and his office has begun the process of integrating all U.S. especially that which is related to innovation and security.
                              • Under President Obama the deal that got Syria to relinquish all of its chemical weapons, a massive supply, was negotiated.
                              • Under President Obama the U.S. via Executive Order banned torture during interrogations.
                              • Under President Obama a U.S. embassy opened in Cuba, the first step in normalizing relations.
                              • Under President Obama the highly restrictive limits on stem cell research were lifted.
                              • Under President Obama billions of dollars were assigned for the first time to Mental Health Services for vets, service members and military families.
                              • Under President Obama Visitor Access Records to the WH were now available to the public.
                              • Under President Obama same-sex marriage equality was promoted and promulgated, a radical change of position for the President.
                              • Under President Obama the FDA began regulating Tobacco.
                              • Under President Obama the federal deficit moved from 9.8 percent of the GDP in 2009 to 3.2 percent in 2016.
                              • Under President Obama nearly all U.S. bans must pass federal stress tests to keep them from crashing the economy when they collapse because of too much risk taking.
                              • Under President Obama regulators adopted the Volcker Rule wherein big banks can't make risky bets with depositor money.
                              • Under President Obama the registry used to track Arabs and Muslim men created post 9/11 was dismantled.
                              • Under President Obama for profit colleges were forced to halt practices that piled up student debt for a shoddy education and students who were tricked into huge debt packages got billions in relief from those colleges.
                              • Under President Obama federal prisons were no longer allowed to put juveniles into solitary confinement.
                              • Under President Obama the CIA closed its secret prisons and interrogation centers, the Black Sites.
                              • Under President Obama the secrecy imposed during the Bush administration around the return of military personnel killed in the line of duty ended with coverage of the return now covered by the media, with public ceremonies, and with the U.S. government paying for families to come to Dover AFB to meet the remains of loved ones.
                              • Under President Obama "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" was repealed as was the prohibition against transgender service men and women.
                              • Under President Obama all combat positions were open to women.
                              • Under President Obama led the effort to extend the solvency of medicare by slowing down the rise in health care costs.
                              • Under President Obama the U.S. auto industry was saved such that U.S. car companies are now among the largest and most profitable manufacturers in the world.
                              • Under President Obama banks were taken out of the costly loop wherein they distributed Pell Grant Funds (with interest).
                              • Under President Obama a series of health care reforms were enacted including the elimination of the pre-existing condition health care exclusion, annual and lifetime benefit limits, equality in charges for women and men, standards for coverage were brought to bear ending junk insurance AND 20 million peopled gained health insurance coverage bringing the uninsured rate to single digits with 91 percent of the country now having health insurance.
                              • Under President Obama the most diverse cabinet ever served with a record number of women and minority judges.
                              • Under President Obama the first comprehensive climate agreement was reached with virtually every nation in the world as a signatory.
                              • Under President Obama the threat of an Iranian Nuclear Force was stalemated.

                              There is a lot more. I have been astounded at the number of TV specials and how much the coverage differs among them. This was a consequential administration and I have no doubt that its legacy will be long and profound.

                              But I want to mention one more thing: it was an administration of grace.

                              Without talking about politics or policy, without getting into race or class, red or blue, the Obamas set a remarkable standard for personal decency and civility during their years as our first family. The arc of history bends toward a different and enduring legacy that Obama and his family leave: decency. There have been no terrible scandals. No Lincoln bedroom shenanigans, no blue dress, no Watergate plumbers, no psychics, no Teapot Domes. No strippers, no divorces and no children born of extramarital affairs (did you know that five presidents had those?). The Obamas maintained their poise in the face of relentless bile. Over the past eight years, it was impossible to speak or write a single word about the family, the Oval Office, the White House or even their dogs without a blast of racially charged, historically repugnant hate coming their way. The numbers vary, but some security sources said that threats against the Obama family were three times as many as other first families faced. And facing all that, they never lashed out. They never tweeted their anger, derided their enemies or hit back with something harder and nastier.

                              “When they go low, we go high,” Michelle Obama said repeatedly. And she meant it.

                              I will miss them.

                              So Long Barack, Michelle, Sasha and Malia.

                              Footnote: After leaving negative posts in response to this essay up for several hours, I moved them, including three of my own, to the Off Topic Page. If you want to read them, go there.

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