Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Working Away: Some Mid-Week Thoughts on #WEF2016; @RealDonaldTrump & @PlutoKiller

It was quite a day around our World as Markets took a major tumble.   Although I saw that US markets somehow got their footing at the last minute, it was terrible in London as some $ 50 Billion Pounds were wiped off British Companies.

I was also taken aback as I saw rumrous of Twitter being bought out by News Corp.    Twitter has been down 41% since Jack Dorsey took charge as CEO and closed at around $ 17.50 a share today.   I was personally amused at the rumours especially as News Corp took a major hit the last time it took a chance on a social media strategy--anyone remember My Space!!!

I have also been on the "virtual prowl" @ #Davos2016  (Since I can't afford the $ 30,000 Entry Fee right now!!!).    The theme is the 4th Industrial Revolution and a always it is quite a show.   Notations will be on hand daily as I hope all "pop in" to check out the available sessions.     I was blown away by the Microsoft Commitment to give away $ 1 Billion Dollars to Non-Profits. 

Back here in the United States, Governors have been giving their State of the State addresses.    I hope to catch Governor Brown's tomorrow that is slated to be given at 10:00 AM California Time.     The Presidential Campaigns have also been on the prowl ever more as Donald Trump gained the endorsement of Sarah Palin and John Wayne's Daughter.    Sarah Palin was in her element yesterday and I viewed it as entertaining to watch.     It was also of interest to me as The Governor of Iowa came out and he would like Cruz defeated.    What I found especially of note was this that was published in Golf Magazine as the Trump Juggernaut continues: 

PRIMARY CONCERNSWhy golf's power brokers, too, are voting up or down on Donald Trump

I thought this from the Washington Post's James Hohman gave a solid overview of all things that occured as the President spoke last week and thehe aftermath of the #SOTU2016 (which is "Twitter Speak" for the State of The Union 2016):     The snapshot is well worth noting in terms of the discourse and the on-going @realDonaldTrump juggernaut that has defied all the conventional so far: 
By James Hohmann
— Barack Obama never mentioned Donald Trump by name during his hour-long State of the Union last night, but he didn’t need to.The millions of Americans who tuned in – for the largest audience that the president may get in 2016 – knew that he was talking about the Republican frontrunner. That alone is a testament to the extent to which the billionaire businessman and first-time political candidate has disrupted the political debate in this country.
Cynics says Obama was trying to elevate Trump to help Democrats, but the reality is simpler: The president, like almost every elected official in Washington, genuinely sees The Donald as a frightening challenge to our country’s institutions and anathema to its values.
Obama also knows that much of what he has accomplished over the past seven years will be rolled back if a Republican succeeds him. And the speech sought to frame the campaign to succeed him in those terms.
“America has been through big changes before,” Obama said. “Each time, there have been those who told us to fear the future — promising to restore past glory if we just got some group or idea that was threatening America under control. And each time, we overcame those fears. … Will we respond to the changes of our time with fear, turning inward as a nation, and turning against each other as a people?”
Some of the presidential shots across the bow at Trump:
  • “Immigrants aren’t the reason wages haven’t gone up enough; those decisions are made in the boardrooms.”
  • “We need to reject any politics that targets people because of race or religion. … When politicians insult Muslims, when a mosque is vandalized, or a kid bullied, that doesn’t make us safer. That’s not telling it like it is. …  This isn’t a matter of political correctness.”
  • “Anyone claiming that America’s economy is in decline is peddling fiction.”
  • “The United States of America is the most powerful nation on Earth. Period. It’s not even close.”
  • “With TPP, China doesn’t set the rules in that region, we do.”
Obama took implicit digs at other GOP candidates too:
  • Alluding to a recent Ted Cruz comment, he declared: “Our answer needs to be more than tough talk or calls to carpet bomb civilians. That may work as a TV sound bite, but it doesn’t pass muster on the world stage.”
  • Referring to Chris Christie’s declaration that “We are already in World War III,” the president said: “As we focus on destroying ISIL, over-the-top claims that this is World War III just play into their hands. Masses of fighters on the back of pickup trucks and twisted souls plotting in apartments or garages pose an enormous danger to civilians and must be stopped. But they do not threaten our national existence!”
— The speech was not a speech to Congress. “It was a sermon to the nation,” Dana Milbank explains. “The president was late to find his moral voice, but it was important that he spoke.”
— Bigger picture, the presidential campaign has overshadowed the president. That much was clear when he opened with a joke about keeping his speech short so that some in the room could “get back to Iowa.”

Nikki Haley (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
— In the latest sign that the GOP establishment fears an electoral debacle if Trump is the nominee, the official Republican response from Nikki Haley also made the case – albeit a little more gently – against going down the path Trump offers. “During anxious times, it can be tempting to follow the siren call of the angriest voices,” the South Carolina governor said. “We must resist that temptation.”
— Haley’s speech has become a Rorschach test on the right.
The far right hated it.
  • Breitbart headlined its story: “Republican Party Uses State Of The Union Response To Attack Trump.”
  • “Trump should deport Nikki Haley,” Ann Coulter wrote in one ofsix-anti Haley tweets.
  • Radio host Laura Ingraham chimed in:  “The country is lit up w/ a populist fever & the GOP responds by digging in, criticizing the GOP candidates dominating polls?! NOT SMART.”
  • Former Ted Cruz aide Amanda Carpenter wrote: “Haley’s speech would’ve been good except for the GOP self-loathing.”
More mainstream elites in the right-leaning media loved Haley’s speech:
  • Charles Krauthammer, on a Fox News panel, called it the best State of the Union response he can ever recall hearing.
  • The Washington Examiner’s David Drucker said Haley’s response “will likely elevate her to the top of the list of potential vice presidential contenders.”
  • National Review editor Rich Lowry said it’s “always a tough assignment”: “Haley was a little shaky at beginning, but moving treatment of Charleston shooting and nice riff on GOP agenda.”
The responses from some of Trump’s GOP rivals echoed Haley to varying degrees. “We cannot elect Hillary Clinton to the White House,”Carly Fiorina posted on Facebook. “One thing is clear: Hillary Clinton will wipe the floor with Donald Trump.”
— The official Spanish-language GOP response was meaningfully different. The Miami Herald flags that the language on immigration was “decidedly softer” in the version delivered en Espanol by Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-Fla.) 
  • Haley: “We must fix our broken immigration system. That means stopping illegal immigration. And it means welcoming properly vetted legal immigrants, regardless of their race or religion. Just like we have for centuries. I have no doubt that if we act with proper focus, we can protect our borders, our sovereignty and our citizens, all while remaining true to America’s noblest legacies.”
  • Diaz-Balart: “It’s essential that we find a legislative solution to protect our nation, defend our borders, offer a permanent and human solution to those who live in the shadows, respect the rule of law, modernize the visa system and push the economy forward.”

As I finished off my "Virtual Walk-About", I could not help but be excited by the discovery of the 9th Planet:

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