House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) says he’s bummed Congress just added $1.5 trillion to the deficit for tax cuts because that’s the exact same amount President Trump says he wants to use to rebuild the country’s crumbling infrastructure.
“Just really bad timing,” Ryan told reporters after President Trump concluded his State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress. “We know how badly we need to repair our roads, bridges, dams, train tracks, airports, canals, ports, and other big public works projects but unfortunately we just burned through the exact same $1.5 trillion Trump says we need to pay for our tax cuts to the wealthiest Americans.”
Ryan said that $1,5 trillion would really come in handy right now, because other countries are pulling ahead of the United States in the quality of their infrastructure and that makes them more competitive from a business standpoint. “Companies don’t want to build a new factory here if our roads and ports are 20-years out of date,” he said. “But the money we could have used to bring our infrastructure up to modern standards just went into the wealthiest Americans’ pockets so they can get another house or another boat or put a swimming pool into one or all of their houses.”
Ryan said he could kick himself for not waiting to see what Trump had in mind on infrastructure before increasing the country’s deficit so a few wealthy families could become even wealthier. “Better infrastructure would help our country boost its wealth-building capacity and that would help everyone but, doggone it, we just borrowed a whopping $1.5 trillion for our donors and now there’s no way we can borrow yet another $1.5 trillion to invest in our country,” he said. “That was really dumb. Now we’re stuck with our third-world infrastructure even though we have a plan now for fixing it up. Someone else really needs to take over management of our money because we sure as hell can’t do it. I wish someone would do some planning around here.”
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Trump Can’t Understand Why U.S.’s Crumbling Infrastructure, Mediocre Schools, and Depleted State Budgets Aren’t Enticing More Migration From Norway
President Trump today said he’d like to see more immigration from Norway and other advanced countries but for some reason people who live in places with well-run and adequately funded governments don’t want to come to the U.S. “I’m not sure why a person who does satisfying work in a country that provides well-run public services doesn’t want to come here,” Trump said at a press briefing. “Apparently our obsolete airports, money-starved transit systems, and hellish public services don’t appeal to people whose countries invest in their citizens.” More.
Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump lashed out at cheats who don’t pay their taxes because they’re robbing the United States of the means to repair its crumbling infrastructure. “Our airports, they’re like third-world airports,” he said at at a rally in Altoona, Pa., this morning. “You go to Dubai, you go to China, and they have these sparkling new airports. They’re beautiful. Then you go to Newark and you’re like in a third-world country. But we can’t fix anything because no one pays their taxes. You have tax dodgers using the loopholes. We’ve got to run our country like a business. People need to pay their taxes because we have to pay for our military. We have to fix our airports. How can we do any of these things if we don’t have any money?” Trump said people who hire teams of lawyers and accountants to dig up loopholes are not good Americans.”You’ve got these rich guys paying thousands of dollars to avoid paying taxes, so who ends up paying the taxes? The little guy. More.
CENTER JUNCTION, Iowa—Calling it an example of how he’s helping “America become great again,” President Donald Trump praised the owner of a family-owned manufacturing company here for opening a paperclip factory in the United States instead of Mexico. “We’re going to make trenendous paperclips here,” Trump told a group of employees on the factory floor. “They’re going to be the best paper clips ever made, and they’re going to be made right here in Iowa, because no one knows how to make paperclips better than the fine people of Iowa.” More.
Corporations and wealthy individuals say they’ll pour their millions of dollars in cuts they stand to get from tax reform into the reelection fight of Republicans whose seats are now at risk from angry middle-class voters whose tax increases will pay for the bill. “We told the GOP they needed to pass tax cuts for the wealthy or they could forget about calling us again for political contributions,” says one billionaire who stands to save millions from tax cuts. “Now that they’re poised to deliver, we understand they need help. There are a lot of people who will want to retaliate by voting out of office anyone who voted for the tax cuts. What we’re saying is, we’re putting our new money where our mouth is.” According to polls, voters are angry that they’re facing tax hikes to pay for the cuts to corporations and the wealthy. One voter who responded to a poll was so angry she couldn’t see straight. More.
Lawmakers in the U.S. Senate this week are tweaking 2017 budget legislation to allocate money for construction of the Mexican border wall, a priority of incoming president Donald Trump, but the budgetary maneuver faces a high hurdle to get past Democrats—and might not even be necessary. A consortium of Russian businessmen, including one who is a close friend of Russian President Vladimir Putin, has come forward with a proposal to create a private fund that would pay for the wall, enabling Trump to meet his highest-profile campaign promise without taking money away from other U.S. priorities or adding to the federal deficit. More.
President-elect Donald Trump said one of the great foreign policy successes in United States history—its purchase of about a third of its landmass in what is known as the Louisiana Purchase—was an “amateur” real estate deal made by “hacks.” Speaking at the last of his “victory rallies,” in Mobile, Ala., Trump said he could have acquired the more than 800,000 square miles of territory from France for 45 million francs, rather than the 68 million francs President Thomas Jefferson paid in 1803. The price tag of 68 million francs translates into about $15 million, or about $250 million in today’s dollars, a price historians say is remarkable for a piece of land that extends from the southern tip of Louisiana to the northern border of Montana and gives the United States its breadbasket—the area of the country that is among the most fertile in the world. More.
President-elect Donald Trump caused a stir December 3 when a photo of him exiting his plane showed he was using Scotch tape to hold his tie together. Given the pride he takes in his wealth and appearance, the incident made us wonder what else he’s holding together with Scotch tape. Here’s what we found. More.
One of the largest employers of minimum-wage workers says it “totally” supports increasing the minimum wage to $15 from the current $7.25, and it also says it wants to help unemployed young people obtain “real-world work experience” by launching a nationwide unpaid internship program. “Many young people today simply don’t have an opportunity to get on-the-ground work experience,” Ned Turner, chairman and CEO of Hamburger O Rama, said at a press conference today at the company’s Omaha, Neb., headquarters. “That’s why we’re so excited about our initiative to give millions of young people concrete, nuts-and-bolts work experience by hiring them as unpaid interns.” Turner said the internship program will provide young people “invaluable” lessons in what makes a popular service business like Hamburger O Rama run. “Our business is built around a 99¢ hamburger,” he said. “Under our program, interns will learn everything about our core product: how to cook it, serve it, clean up after the customer has eaten it . . . . More.
Chief executive officers at companies in the United States are uniting behind a push to guarantee no CEO has to work for less than $40 million a year. “This is an issue of basic fairness,” says John Carter, CEO of iQuantumData in Raleigh, N.C. “The idea that a CEO can live in this country on anything under $40 million a year is unsupportable. No one can maintain three or four houses, keep a boat, and travel to Europe for events like Wimbledon or to play golf at St. Andrews on anything less than $40 million.” Mike Anderson, CEO of Delta Pharmaceuticals in Philadelphia, says the CEO profession is riven by inequality. More.
Carmakers in Detroit, Japan, Germany, and elsewhere are competing fiercely to offer cars and trucks that have the most irritating, annoying, and distracting lights possible. “Thanks to new LED technology, we’re able to annoy and distract people in a way that we never could before, and that’s really a game-changer for this industry,” says Rolf Anthonssen, chairman of Volvo Personvagnar AB, the Swedish car making giant based in Gothenburg. Since about 2010, carmakers have been turning to LED technology for headlights and tail lights because of the technology’s versatility and efficiency. LED technology uses light emitting diodes that require little energy to power on and off. Because of that efficiency, automakers can make lights twice as bright as traditional incandescent bulbs, and at less cost. More.
AKRON, Ohio—Touring a wire coat hanger factory in what was once a blighted industrial area here, President Barack Obama said the United States is returning to its roots as a manufacturing giant and he took a stab at critics who say the country risks losing more manufacturing jobs if a Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal is passed. “Like this wire coat hanger I have in my hand, the United States is strong,” Obama said, speaking before the 75 employees of the Ace Wire Company. “Anyone who needs evidence that the United States can compete with anyone in the world just needs to look at the factory floor that surrounds me. Every day, more than 10,000 coat hangers are made here and distributed to dry cleaners and hotels throughout the United States and throughout the world. America is back!” More.
Manufacturers and technology companies have failed to blanket the living environment with blinking lights and bleeping noises even though they’ve had the capability to do so for many years, the world says. Until enough blinking lights and bleeping noises fill all living spaces at all times, there will be operations and processes that won’t be sufficiently signaled for people the world over to be sufficiently signaled about every process and operation. “As hard as it is to believe, it’s possible today to go from your home to your car without being signaled by a blinking light or a bleeping noise alerting you to an operation or process that has occurred and that could affect you,” says the world. “Has the newspaper arrived at your doorstep? Have your sprinklers been turned on to water your grass? These are the kinds of processes and operations today that remain un-signaled with a blinking light or bleeping noise. More.
When John and Lucy Wong had Angie three months ago, nothing was too good for her. Now their daughter is the first on her block to have a carriage with a built-in TV, so she can watch educational and other programming even when she’s out enjoying a stroll with mom or dad. “Why just have her watch TV when she’s in her crib?” says Lucy, 24, a marketing assistant with a financial services company in Atlanta. “Going outside for walks is the perfect time to have her watch TV, too.” Although pediatricians generally discourage screen time for children before they reach two years old, parents like the Wongs say such advice doesn’t apply to them. “That’s for people who just throw their child in front of the TV for babysitting,” says Wong. “We don’t do that. We’re always educating our daughter. More.
Trent Sanders says he had no idea the world was filled with other people like him until someone pointed it out after he had been driving around town with music blasting out of his car. “It was like a light went off in my head,” says Sanders, 25. “I was just driving around like I always do and while I was sitting at a stop light this guy pulled up next to me, rolled down his window, and yelled, ‘Other people live in this world, asshole! Not everyone wants to listen to your f**ing music!’ Then the light turned green and he peeled off. And I just sat there, stunned.” Sanders says he just automatically assumed he was the only person in the world, which is why he thought it was perfectly okay for him to blast his music while he drives around. “Did I know other people were driving around, too, some trying to listen to their own music? I confess, I did not.” More.