And this month, documents found on the computer backups of a deceased Republican strategist offered the most persuasive evidence yet that the decision was driven not by policy, but by partisanship.
The files show that the strategist, Thomas B. Hofeller, had outlined in 2015 how Republicans could gain political power by basing new political maps on the number of voting-age citizens instead of total population — a strategy, he wrote, that could only be realized with data from a census citizenship question.
EXCERPT: After Mr. Trump invoked executive privilege to block disclosure of documents on the census, a House committee voted on Wednesday to recommend that the House hold Attorney General William P. Barr and Mr. Ross in contempt of Congress.
“We needed 60 votes” to repeal the ACA, Trump explained during an appearance before the Faith and Freedom Coalition, “and we had 51 votes. And sometimes, you know, we had a little hard time with a couple of them, right? Fortunately, they’re gone now. They’ve gone on to greener pastures—or perhaps far less green pastures. But they’re gone. They’re gone, Bill. I’m very happy they’re gone.”
“I’ve done more in 2½ years than any President in the history of this country.” Three printed pages with 72 bullet points emerge: Economic growth is up, and unemployment has stayed at or below 4% for 15 months. He signed tax cuts into law, opened up Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling, recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, canceled the Clean Power Plan, withdrew from the Iran deal and the Paris Agreement, issued an order to make a space force the sixth branch of the military. He’s aggrieved by the perception that he doesn’t get credit for what he’s done.
This month, In These Times collected 10 statistics that present a sobering vantage on American wealth since the Great Recession, revealing a nation defined by worsening inequality, stagnating wages and uneven economic development rather than universal prosperity.
18.82% – Increase in gross domestic product (GDP) between 2007 and 2018
43.16% – Increase in corporate profits after taxes from 2007 to 2018, adjusted for inflation
65.97% – Increase in ratio of CEO-to-worker compensation from 2007 to 2017, adjusted for inflation
29.2% – Increase in productivity from 2007 to 2017
2.93% – Decline in how much of GDP workers took home between 2007 and 2017
13.3% – Hourly pay increase from 2007 to 2017
$28 – Bonus from the 2017 Tax Cut and Jobs Act for each American worker, according to recent analysis by the CRS
53% – Taxpayers who will pay more in taxes by 2027, due to the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act
3.1% – Decrease in civilian labor participation between 2007 and 2018
43% – College graduates who reported being underemployed in their first job, as of 2018
76% – Counties in the United States that had fewer small businesses in 2016 than they did in 2007
The Trump campaign owes a total of $841,219 to cities from Burlington, Vermont, to Green Bay and Eau Claire in Wisconsin, Mesa, Arizona, and Spokane, Washington, according to invoices. The largest bill — $470,000 — was for El Paso for a February rally, including $381,000 for extra police and $61,000 for fire department services. Erie, Pennsylvania; Billings, Montana; and Tucson, Arizona, are also still waiting for payment.
Read and search the full Mueller report
Updated 1:01 PM ET, Thu April 18, 2019
(CNN)After years of investigating, the Department of Justice released a redacted copy of special counsel Robert Mueller’s report Thursday. The report is nearly 400 pages and covers subjects ranging from questions about Russian interference in the 2016 US presidential election to whether President Donald Trump obstructed justice.
Not to be confused with the term “bigly”, one of Donald Trump’s favorite words.
“”A compelling story, even if factually inaccurate, can be more emotionally compelling than a dry recitation of the truth.
—GOP lead strategist Frank Luntz in a 2002 Bush administration memo
The big lie is the name of a propaganda technique, originally coined by Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf, and denotes where a known falsehood is stated and repeated and treated as if it is self-evidently true, in hopes of swaying the course of an argument in a direction that takes the big lie for granted rather than critically questioning it or ignoring it.
Well-known forms of the big lie include Hitler’s use of anti-Semitism in Nazi propaganda (blaming Jews for all of Germany’s problems), communist propaganda blaming the “bourgeoisie” for all workers’ problems, the frequent demonizing of the left-wing as communist and of the right-wing as fascist, religious fundamentalist claims of persecution, the Roman Catholic Church’s claims that the clergy sex abuse scandal was a problem of liberal churches, and denial of Ken Ham’s complicity in acts of piglet rape.
Ironically, Hitler asserted that the technique had in fact been used by the Jews to unfairly blame Germany’s loss in World War I on German Army officer Erich Ludendorff.
In-situ emissions 43 per cent higher than mining
According to a recent analysis by the Pembina Institute, in-situ extraction produced an average of 43 per cent more emissions per barrel than mining in 2016. That’s a serious concern for climate policy analysts given that all new oilsands production after roughly 2022 will come from in-situ projects.
Ambitious claims are frequently made by industry and government that per-barrel emissions will soon plummet with the implementation of new technologies.
But Pembina analyst Jan Gorski told The Narwhal that most emissions reductions have occurred in upgrading, not extraction, with little signs of improvement in mining or in-situ extraction.
Furthermore, the most promising technologies are still in early stages and will only apply to new projects, not expansions (which is where production is set to grow).
“The greater question is that it hasn’t yet been shown how oilsands emissions, even as they are today, would be compatible with our emissions targets,” Gorski said.
“You take into account that there’s going to be more growth and it just makes the problem worse.”
Recent studies have also questioned current estimates of methane leakage from extraction of natural gas, used heavily by in-situ producers. A journal article in Elementa from earlier this year indicated that emissions from operations near Red Deer may be 15 times higher than reported.
Overview of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG)
In the last decade there has been a boom in natural gas extraction and export in North America, mainly in the United States where new processes have allowed for access to natural gas reserves that were previously inaccessible. The most common of these new extraction processes is called hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking.” The fracking process involves pumping large amounts of mud, water and chemicals into deep natural gas deposits, creating enough pressure to crack open rock formations and release the gas.
These new gas discoveries have created an appetite for exports. To turn natural gas into a liquid for export, it must be cooled to 163 degrees below zero. Doing so requires running massive compression units 24/7. Each of the large LNG plants proposed for B.C.’s coast would need the equivalent of an entire Site C dam (1,100 megawatts of capacity) to power it by electricity. However, the reality is many of these plants will run their compressor units on natural gas, creating greenhouse gas emissions in the process. The proposed Pacific NorthWest LNG plant in B.C.’s northwest could become the single largest emitter of greenhouse gases in Canada if it is built.