Reports Trump Selects Exxon Head Tillerson and Super Hawk Bolton for State Department Bye Bye Climate Hello War

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jerrym
Reports Trump Selects Exxon Head Tillerson and Super Hawk Bolton for State Department Bye Bye Climate Hello War

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jerrym

Trump's choice for Secretary of State is Exxon CEO Rex Tillerson, according to NBC. His $500 billion dollar Arctic exploration for fossil fuel deal with Russia was blocked by the Obama administration because of sanctions on Russia over the Ukraine. There is already speculation that this will be back on under Trump. Global warming! What's that?

Deputy Secretary will be Super Hawk John Bolton, who never saw a war he didn't like.

 

Quote:

President-elect Donald Trump has selected Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson as his nominee for secretary of State, NBC News reported Saturday.

Critics have already called into question Tillerson’s ties to Russian president Vladimir Putin.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Tillerson negotiated an energy partnership with Putin in 2011 that the Russian president said could be worth $500 billion. 

The following year, Tillerson received the Russian Order of Friendship, one of the highest awards the country bestows upon foreign nationals.

Reuters reported earlier this year that the Exxon Mobil deal with Russia had been put on hold due to sanctions levied against the Kremlin for its annexation of Crimea in 2014. The company has said it intends to resume the deal after sanctions are lifted — a process that Tillerson could help expedite as secretary of State. ...

Former Ambassador to the U.N. John Bolton, a neoconservative firebrand, would be tapped to be Tillerson's deputy at State.

The selection of the Putin ally comes just hours after the Washington Post reported that the CIA had assessed that Russia had interfered in the U.S. election in an effort to help Trump get to the White House.

http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/309813-trump-picks-exxon-ceo-...

 

 

 

jerrym

Here's a summary of the Exxon-Russia $500 billion Arctic deal.

Quote:

American oil company ExxonMobil has signed a huge deal with Russian company Rosneft to begin exploring the Russian-controlled parts of the Arctic for oil, reports the New York Times. ...

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin oversaw the signing of the deal on Tuesday. Rosneft is owned by the Russian government.

Putin told reporters that the deal may eventually see $500 billion worth of investments.

The key agreements from the press release:

  • US $3.2 billion exploration program planned for Kara Sea and Black Sea
  • Establishment of a joint Arctic Research and Design Center for Offshore Development in St. Petersburg
  • Rosneft participation in ExxonMobil projects in the U.S. and other countries with a focus on building offshore and tight oil expertise
  • Joint operations to develop Western Siberia tight oil resources
  • Companies form partnership to undertake projects in the Russian Federation and internationally

In exchange for the Arctic exploration, the Times reportsExxon has given Rosneft the rights to some assets elsewhere in the World. It's not clear at present if any of these points will be in Texas or the Gulf of Mexico. Arctic drilling is largely off-limits in Alaska.

http://www.businessinsider.com/exxon-mobil-rosneft-arctic-2011-8

 

jerrym

Here's a summary of John Bolton's career. 

Quote:

His Justice Department position as an assistant attorney general required him to advance Reagan administration positions, including[30] opposition to financial reparations to Japanese-Americans held in World War II–era internment camps;[31] the insistence of Reagan's executive privilege during William Rehnquist's chief justice confirmation hearings, when Congress asked for memos written by Rehnquist as a Nixon Justice Department official;[32] shepherding the judicial nomination process for Antonin Scalia;[30] and the framing of a bill to control illegal immigration as an essential drug war measure.[30] He was also involved in the Iran–Contra affair. ...

Bolton also led the Bush administration's opposition on constitutional grounds[41] to the International Criminal Court, ...

Bolton was instrumental in derailing a 2001 biological weapons conference in Geneva convened to endorse a UN proposal to enforce the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention. "U.S. officials, led by Bolton, argued that the plan would have put U.S. national security at risk by allowing spot inspections of suspected U.S. weapons sites, despite the fact that the U.S. claims not to have carried out any research for offensive purposes since 1969." ...

Bolton is said to have flown to Europe to demand the resignation of Jose Bustani, head of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), and to have orchestrated his removal at a special session of the organization. ...

He also pushed for reduced funding for the Nunn-Lugar Cooperative Threat Reduction program to halt the proliferation of nuclear materials. ...

In 2002, Bolton accused Cuba of transfers of biological weapons technology to rogue states and called on it "to fully comply with all of its obligations under the Biological Weapons Convention." ...

Bolton is alleged by Democratic Congressman Henry Waxman to have played a role in encouraging the inclusion of statement that British Intelligence had determined Iraq attempted to procure yellowcake uranium from Niger in Bush's 2003 State of the Union Address. ...

Bolton wrote a book titled Surrender Is Not an Option. In it Bolton criticizes the Bush administration for changing its foreign policy objectives during the start of the administration's second term.[66]

Critics allege Bolton tried to spin intelligence to support his views and political objectives on a number of occasions. Greg Thielmann, of the State Department's Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR), ... Thielmann stated to Seymour Hersh that, "Bolton seemed troubled because INR was not telling him what he wanted to hear ... I was intercepted at the door of his office and told, 'The Under Secretary doesn't need you to attend this meeting anymore.'" According to former coworkers, Bolton withheld information that ran counter to his goals from Secretary of State Colin Powell on multiple occasions, and from Powell's successor Condoleezza Rice on at least one occasion. ...

In a 1994 Global Structures Convocation hosted by the World Federalist Association (now Citizens for Global Solutions), he stated,

(...) there is no United Nations... there is an international community that occasionally can be led by the only real power left in the world, and that's the United States, when it suits our interests, and when we can get others to go along.[78]

He also stated that "The Secretariat Building in New York has 38 stories. If you lost ten stories today, it wouldn't make a bit of difference." ...

On July 28, 2005, it was revealed that a statement made by Bolton on forms submitted to the Senate was false. Bolton indicated that in the prior five years he had not been questioned in any investigation, but in fact he had been interviewed by the State Department's Inspector General as part of an investigation into the sources of pre-war claims of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. After insisting for weeks that Bolton had testified truthfully on the form, the State Department reversed itself, stating that Bolton had simply forgotten about the investigation.

 

In 2009, Bolton likened the President to Æthelred the Unready, "the turn of the first millennium Anglo-Saxon king whose reputation for indecisiveness and his unsuccessful [effort]... to buy off Viking raiders made him history's paradigmatic weak leader." In an interview with the Los Angeles Times, Bolton contended that Obama's efforts on international issues are nothing more than "dithering."[132]

In September 2011, when the Obama administration declared the death of Al Qaeda target and American-born radical Anwar al-Awlaki in Yemen, Bolton commented "I think it's important as individual Al Qaeda figures and other terrorists are killed that we not read more into it than there is. Consider this analogy if you were around in the 1920s and somebody said, my God, Vladimir Lenin is dead. The Bolsheviks will never recover from this... So while Al-Awlaki's death is significant, I would not read cosmic consequences into it." ...

John Bolton caused a controversy on December 17, 2012 when he claimed ...  that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton faked a concussion to avoid testifying before Congress regarding the September 11, 2012 attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya. ...

In 2010 he wrote a foreword for the book "The Post-American Presidency: The Obama Administration’s War on America", while maintaining close relations with its authors, far-right conservative bloggers, activists, and commentators Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_R._Bolton

 

 

 

 

josh

Starting to look like Trump really is The Siberian Candidate. It's now confirmed that Russia engaged in hacking with the specific purpose of electing Trump. The Trump campaign's involvement is of yet unknown. And he's now picking members of his cabinet who are pro-Putin. No wonder #Putinspuppet is now trending.

jerrym

The Time magazine review of Bolton's 2007 book below shows that even among the neocons of the George W. Bush administration, Bolton stands out as a superhawk.

The review discusses his loss of influence over time in the Bush government: "But implicit in Bolton's bomb-throwing is a startling admission: that his never-ending battle against "pragmatists" and those less ideologically committed inside the most conservative administration in decades has been lost."

Looks like he has found the opportunity to push "muscular unilateralism" even harder in the upcoming Trump administration.

Quote:

But it's the brickbats he reserves for [Condolezza] Rice and fellow diplomats and civil servants in the current Administration that grab the most attention. First as Undersecretary of State for Arms Control and then as U.N. ambassador, Bolton emerges as an outspoken unilateralist and an opponent of treaties and international institutions. ...

What's most interesting about his new book is the sheer enthusiasm with which he has adopted the mantle of the most vocal neoconservative critic of the Bush Administration's foreign policy. ...

Bolton accuses the Administration of laxity in dealing with a nuclear-armed North Korea and an Iran intent on obtaining the bomb, not to mention its efforts to arrange a Middle East peace conference. 

On Iran, Bolton says former Secretary of State Colin Powell was too intent on mollifying U.S. allies like France, Britain and Germany. This caused Powell to offer Iran too many "carrots" — trade and commercial inducements — if Tehran would rein in its pursuit of atomic materials. To a large degree Rice, in Bolton's view, perpetuated this strategy even though, he believes, there is almost no chance that Iran will give up its nuclear ambitions. As a result, he says, the U.S. has wasted time on "four and half years of failed diplomacy" indulging Iran with unnecessarily accommodationist negotiations. ...

So what are the prospects for a return to the muscular unilateralism that Bolton favors? "There's a possibility that events in the external world will validate our position and give the President a means to return to his gut."

http://content.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1685063,00.html

 

 

jerrym

Exxon's CEO Tillerson's appointment as Secretary of State, according to NBC News reports, not only is deeply concerning because of Exxon's record with regard to expanding fossil fuel exploration and use, but because it has engaged in global warming denial, despite knowing for 40 years that it was occurring. This includes 11 years when Exxon knew about how fossil fuels were causing global warming, but climate change had not not yet become a public issue. 

Since Tillerson has been an Exxon employee since 1975 (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rex_Tillerson) he has been well aware of this global warming crisis while pursuing policies that will extremely exacerberate it. 

 

Quote:

Exxon was aware of climate change, as early as 1977, 11 years before it became a public issue, according to a recent investigation from InsideClimate News. This knowledge did not prevent the company (now ExxonMobil and the world’s largest oil and gas company) from spending decades refusing to publicly acknowledge climate change and even promoting climate misinformation—an approach many have likened to the lies spread by the tobacco industry regarding the health risks of smoking. Both industries were conscious that their products wouldn’t stay profitable once the world understood the risks, so much so that they used the same consultants to develop strategies on how to communicate with the public. ...

Exxon didn’t just understand the science, the company actively engaged with it. In the 1970s and 1980s it employed top scientists to look into the issue and launched its own ambitious research program that empirically sampled carbon dioxide and built rigorous climate models. Exxon even spent more than $1 million on a tanker project that would tackle how much CO2 is absorbed by the oceans. It was one of the biggest scientific questions of the time, meaning that Exxon was truly conducting unprecedented research. 

In their eight-month-long investigation, reporters at InsideClimate News interviewed former Exxon employees, scientists and federal officials and analyzed hundreds of pages of internal documents. They found that the company’s knowledge of climate change dates back to July 1977, when its senior scientist James Black delivered a sobering message on the topic. “In the first place, there is general scientific agreement that the most likely manner in which mankind is influencing the global climate is through carbon dioxide release from the burning of fossil fuels," Black told Exxon’s management committee. A year later he warned Exxon that doubling CO2 gases in the atmosphere would increase average global temperatures by two or three degrees—a number that is consistent with the scientific consensus today. He continued to warn that “present thinking holds that man has a time window of five to 10 years before the need for hard decisions regarding changes in energy strategies might become critical." In other words, Exxon needed to act. ...

When NASA scientist James Hansen told a congressional hearing that the planet was already warming, Exxon remained publicly convinced that the science was still controversial. Furthermore, experts agree that Exxon became a leader in campaigns of confusion. By 1989 the company had helped create the Global Climate Coalition (disbanded in 2002) to question the scientific basis for concern about climate change. It also helped to prevent the U.S. from signing the international treaty on climate known as the Kyoto Protocol in 1998 to control greenhouse gases. Exxon’s tactic not only worked on the U.S. but also stopped other countries, such as China and India, from signing the treaty. At that point, “a lot of things unraveled,” Oreskes says. ...

Since then, Exxon has spent more than $30 million on think tanks that promote climate denial, according to Greenpeace. ...

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/exxon-knew-about-climate-chan...

 

montrealer58 montrealer58's picture

Looks like Canada will be giving its oil to the US for free soon. Or else.

NDPP

Expect 'shock and awe' on all fronts. And immediately his regime begins.

 

Resist or Conform: Lessons in Fortitude and Weakness From the Israeli Left

http://counterpunch.org/2016/12/09/resist-or-conform-lessons-in-fortitud...

 

"It's fun to shoot some people, you know, it's a hell of a hoot." -  US Gen 'Mad Dog' Mattis

 

 

 

 

jerrym

Some quotations from Chairman (sorry, CEO) Rex Tillerson's little red (as in Republican) Exxon gospel on fossil fuels and climate change:

 

Quote:

“It doesn't do the consumer a lot of good to substitute an alternative fuel that costs $5 for gasoline that costs $4.”

“The dominant energy source in the future will continue to be oil and natural gas.”

"If you want to live by the precautionary principle, then crawl up in a ball and live in a cave."

“And as human beings as a -- as a -- as a species, that's why we're all still here. We have spent our entire existence adapting, OK? So we will adapt to this. Changes to weather patterns that move crop production areas around -- we'll adapt to that. It's an engineering problem, and it has engineering solutions. And so I don't -- the fear factor that people want to throw out there to say we just have to stop this, I do not accept."

"And the consequences of a misstep by any member of our industry -- and I'm speaking again about the shale revolution-- the consequences of a misstep in a well, while large to the immediate people that live around that well, in the great scheme of things are pretty small, and even to the immediate people around the well, they could be mitigated."

http://www.polluterwatch.com/rex-tillerson

 

alan smithee alan smithee's picture

I've been saying Trump's supporters were idiots but I don't believe that anymore. Not stupid but gullible. I have a feeling that once his administration sinks in and all that rhetoric he was bloviating during the campaign about 'workers' becomes crystal clear to have been deemed bullshit by the entire political spectrum,I think by this time next year,Trump's approval rating will be worse than Dubya's was at the end of his presidency.

It's going to be comedy gold.

josh
jerrym

Just over a month ago, Tillerson proclaimed that we will need the equivalent of five Saudi Arabian oil reserves to meet global demand over the next 25 years. At the same time he assured people that ExxonMobil is concerned about climate change and integrity is part of everything that ExxonMobl does. Sounds like he will fit in perfectly in the Trump cabinet. 

A number of Democratic Attorney Generals are investigating how much ExxonMobil knew about climate change, despite its denials that global warming is not occurring. 

 

Quote:

Global demand for energy will grow 25% in the next 25 years and countries will guzzle oil five times the size of Saudi Arabia’s reserves.

Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson was on bullish form in London on Wednesday, dismissing any concerns that the UN’s new climate treaty will limit near-term consumption of oil and gas.

His scenario would blow efforts to contain global warming to below the 2C danger zone sky high, unless nascent carbon capture technologies come online fast. ...

As a company Exxon “shares the view that addressing climate change is serious and warrants thoughtful action,” he said, citing projects on carbon capture, efficiency and waste heat conversion. ...

“We’re trying to influence and inform people and business on the choices they make.” ...

Exxon has come under intense pressure in the past year over evidence it ignored warnings from its own scientists of the dangers posed by burning fossil fuels way back in the 1980s.

Leaked internal documents clash with the company’s public position over the past decades and funding of lobbying to cast doubt on the veracity of climate science.

It is facing an inquiry from a coalition of Democrat attorney generals led by New York State’s Eric Schneiderman into what the company knew.

Tillerson avoided mentioning the issue, but insisted the company he has run since 2006 was committed to doing the “right thing the right way”.

“Integrity is in everything we do. It’s the foundation of trust and cooperation. A focus on integrity makes a corporations more effective,” he said.

http://www.climatechangenews.com/2016/10/19/exxon-ceo-world-needs-oil-of...

 

 

jerrym

Twenty US Attorney Generals have started investigating ExxonMobil over its decades-long denial of global warming despite internal documents showing it had scientific evidence warning it of the connection between fossil fuels and climate change. This could result in billions in lawsuits similar to those that hit Big Tobacco over its denial of the relationship between cancer and smoking and focus them to admit what they have done. After all the fossil fuel companies and Tillerson based their deny, doubt, delay strategy on Big Tobacco's campaign. 

It would be karma for Tillerson. 

 

Quote:

In a move many are hailing as a "turning point" in the climate fight, 20 state Attorneys General on Tuesday launched an unprecedented, multi-state effort to investigate and prosecute the "high-funded and morally vacant forces" that have stymied attempts to combat global warming—starting with holding ExxonMobil and other industry giants accountable for fraud and suppression of key climate science. ...

This is about facts, and science, and transparency," said Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey, who spoke at a press conference alongside New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, former Vice President Al Gore and seven other Attorneys General.

"Fossil fuel companies that deceived investors and consumers about the dangers of climate change should be, must be held accountable," Healey continued, saying there is a "troubling disconnect between what Exxon knew, what industry folks knew and the company and industry chose to share with investors and the American public."

The coalition of Attorneys General from 16 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands was convened by Schneiderman, who in November announced a state investigation into Exxon after reporting revealed that the oil giant had for decades known and suppressed evidence about the dangers that fossil fuels posed to the environment and then purposely disseminated false information in order to boost its profits. ...

AG Walker said that Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands are already "experiencing the effects of global warming," from coral bleaching and the proliferation of seaweed, to ever-more powerful hurricanes.

"It is troubling that, as the polar caps melt, there are companies that are looking at that as an opportunity to go and drill, to go and get more oil. How selfish can you be?" Walker asked. "Your product is destroying this Earth and you want to do what? Destroy the planet further," he added, saying they have "documents" showing just that.

Environmental groups that have spearheaded the call for accountability and investigations into what Exxon knew heralded the announcements and the new AG climate coalition.

"This creates a huge sense of momentum. Exxon may have been able to brush aside a few isolated inquiries, but with more states jumping on board, these investigations are sure to generate some serious waves," said May Boeve, executive director of 350.org, which on Tuesday launched the website ExxonKnew.org to share information about the investigations and petition the U.S. Department of Justice and state Attorneys General to "hold Exxon accountable." ...

As Katherine Sawyer, senior international organizer for watchdog group Corporate Accountability International, explained in an emailed statement following the press conference: 

"In the '90s, investigations by attorneys general were the beginning of the end for Big Tobacco as we knew it and ushered in a series of lawsuits that shuttered its front groups, forced the release of internal documents and held it liable to pay the high cost of its impacts on society. Just as a similar coalition did with Big Tobacco, this powerful coalition of state Attorneys General are leading the way in holding Exxon and the rest of the fossil fuel industry accountable for their decades of deception and protecting climate policy from their profit-driven interference."

http://www.ecowatch.com/20-attorneys-general-launch-climate-fraud-invest...

 

montrealer58 montrealer58's picture

Hypocrisy is a virtue in politics. We should know that by now.

jerrym

Tillerson's  Exxon connections to Putin and Russia could cause him problems during the Senate confrimation process as hawkish Republicans join forces with Democrats. The selection of superhawk as Deputy Secretary of State might help give him cover. 

Quote:

Tillerson would probably face stiff opposition from Democratic and some Republican senators for both his foreign business ventures and an escalating legal tussle over how much Exxon knew about climate change and when. The world’s largest oil explorer by market value has said a probe by state attorneys general in New York, Massachusetts and elsewhere of whether it misled investors about climate risks is politically motivated. ...

With the selection, Trump would sidestep a feud that had broken out among his advisers and supporters over the two men seen as the front-runners for the spot: former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani and Romney. Giuliani, who had fervently supported Trump for president, campaigned openly for the job. By contrast, Romney sought to mobilize opposition to Trump during the presidential campaign, calling him “a con man, a fake.”

But Tillerson’s selection will also fuel critics who say U.S. foreign policy has long been driven by the country’s demand for oil and that naming an oil executive is the last straw. During the campaign, Trump said the U.S. should have seized Iraq’s oil fields after the U.S. invasion in 2003, a move which he says would have prevented the rise and spread of the Islamic State terror group.

“I’ve always said — shouldn’t be there, but if we’re going to get out, take the oil,” Trump said in September. “It used to be, to the victor belong the spoils. Now, there was no victor there, believe me. There was no victor. But I always said: Take the oil.” ...

He’d also add to a Cabinet increasingly full of millionaires and billionaires, including Commerce Secretary nominee Wilbur Ross, whose fortune is estimated at about $2.9 billion. Tillerson was paid $27.3 million in salary, bonus, stock awards and other compensation in 2015; his 2.6 million shares of Exxon common stock had a value of about $228 million as of early December. ...

Under Tillerson’s leadership, Russia became Exxon’s single biggest exploration theater as the company amassed drilling rights across tens of millions of acres, dwarfing its holdings in its home country, formerly its largest drilling opportunity, according to U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filings. When the Putin regime forced Royal Dutch Shell Plc and other foreign investors to cede control of a massive gas export project on Sakhalin Island in 2007, Exxon’s holdings in the same region remained intact and untouched by the government.

http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/world/exxon+tillerson+ties+putin+exp...

 

jerrym

The grandaddy of Republican hawks in the Senate, John McCain, is already raising questions about Tillerson. Of course, none of them have to do with global warming. 

 

Quote:

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said Saturday he has concerns about the possibility of Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson being nominated for secretary of State, given his ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin. ...

“I don’t know what Mr. Tillerson’s relationship with Vladimir Putin was, but I’ll tell you it is a matter of concern to me,” McCain said in an interview with Fox News. ...

McCain is the first Republican to raise questions about the potential nomination, and Tillerson could fail to make it through the confirmation process if just three GOP senators join a united Democratic opposition.

“I’d have to examine it,” McCain said of the potential nomination. “You want to give the president of the United States the benefit of the doubt because the people have spoken. But Vladimir Putin is a thug, bully and a murderer, and anybody else who describes him as anything else is lying.”

Former top McCain aide Mark Salter predicted that Tillerson would have a hard time getting through the confirmation process.

“Tillerson would sell out NATO for Sakhalin oil and his pal, Vlad. Should be a rough confirmation hearing, and a no vote on the Senate floor,” Salter tweeted Friday.

Tillerson negotiated an energy partnership with Putin in 2011 that the Russian president said would be worth as much as $500 billion. The next year, the Exxon Mobile CEO received the Russian Order of Friendship from the Kremlin, one of the highest honors that Russia bestows on foreigners

http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/world/exxon+tillerson+ties+putin+exp...

 

 

montrealer58 montrealer58's picture

McCain has long been considered a RINO (Republican In Name Only) in American conservative circles.

Sean in Ottawa

alan smithee wrote:

I've been saying Trump's supporters were idiots but I don't believe that anymore. Not stupid but gullible. I have a feeling that once his administration sinks in and all that rhetoric he was bloviating during the campaign about 'workers' becomes crystal clear to have been deemed bullshit by the entire political spectrum,I think by this time next year,Trump's approval rating will be worse than Dubya's was at the end of his presidency.

It's going to be comedy gold.

Somehow I don't think this will happen. The people against Trump will be validated but those who support him may or may not waver. The trouble I have with what youa re saying is that you make an assumption that facts matter and people will know them. Trump followers are for the most part more like cult followers. They ahve had a lot of facts for some time but that is not relevant to them. Trump will give them spectacle and he will give them false facts and news to explain everything. There will be a conspiracy theory for every time he does something to screw the people, his ennemis will be blamed.

I would say that we are about to see the worst riots in US history as their society becomes more polarized and the distance between the Trump supporters version of the truth and what others see grows.

It would be great if you are correct and poeple wake up but I don't think they will. Trump will give them other targets to blame for the pain he will cause. His supporters for the most part will buy it even as everyone else shakes their heads.

The US is in for some dark days. This presidency is not going to end in a collective realization of what Trump was doing. It will leave them more divided than ever.

jerrym

The choice of Bolton, who has repeatedly attacked Putin, by the Putin-friendly Trump to work under Tillerson, who received the highest Russian award available to a foreigner, the Order of Friendship, may seem strange. However, it may be related to the influence of Robert Mercer, Trump's largest donor, who also is a strong supporter of Bolton. After all, "Mercer and his daughter played a role in the elevation of Stephen Bannon and Kellyanne Conway into senior roles in the Trump campaign" (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Mercer_(businessman) ), as well as supporting strongly anti-Putin Ted Cruz, before switching to Trump. 

Whatever the reason Bolton is widely disliked internationally. 

Quote:

His time at the U.N. was marked by a rapid uptick in anti-American sentiment among the global diplomatic community. Bolton remains one of the most disliked foreign policy operators on the world stage. ...

Even as the second in command at State, Bolton is an aggressive selection from Trump, shattering the president-elect’s pledge to work peacefully with other countries. Bolton, who has called for the bombing of Iran, held high-level roles in three different Republican administrations between 1998 and 2006. He is now a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, a conservative think tank whose vice president has described Trump as “an idiot.” 

He would be reporting to a commander-in-chief who appears to espouse a worldview diametrically opposed to his own. Bolton has repeatedly slammed President Barack Obama for his willingness to engage in limited cooperation with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Syria and Iran. 

“While Mr. Obama sleepwalks, Mr. Putin is ardently pursuing Russia’s Middle East objectives,” Bolton wrote in a 2013 op-ed that argued against assuming the U.S. has common interests with Russia in Syria.

In 2014, speculating that Russia was responsible for the downing of a Malaysian plane over Ukraine, Bolton told Fox News, “I think we’ve got to begin to treat Russia like the adversary that Putin is currently demonstrating it to be.”  ...

Trump, a man who has extensive financial ties with Russia, is far more likely than Obama to legitimize Moscow’s military endeavors in the Middle East. He has already broken with the Republican orthodoxy by suggesting that the U.S. abandon its efforts to fight ISIS in Syria and let Russia take over. ... In a phone conversation last month, Trump and Putin committed to working to normalize relations, a Kremlin readout of the call said. The current relationship, the two leaders agreed, is “extremely unsatisfactory.”

Yet Trump listed Bolton as one of his “go-to” experts on national security issues during a “Meet the Press” interview in August. “He’s, you know, a tough cookie, knows what he’s talking about,” Trump said.

It was a curious comment from a man who had spent the previous several months (falsely) boasting that he was opposed to the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq and hitting his opponent for her vote in support of the war. Bolton was in favor of invading Iraqas early as 1998. In the lead-up to the invasion, Bolton, then under secretary of state for arms control, peddled false information about Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction program. Even after it became clear that the Iraqi dictator did not possess such weapons, Bolton maintained that the war was a good idea.

On the other hand, Bolton has a major supporter in Robert Mercer, a hedge fund billionaire who provided the lion’s share of the financial backing for Trump’s candidacy. The largest donor to Bolton’s super PAC over the years has been the Mercer family. And in 2014, Trump gave $5,000 to the super PAC. 

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/john-bolton-trump-state-department_u...

 

 

 

jerrym

montrealer58 wrote:

McCain has long been considered a RINO (Republican In Name Only) in American conservative circles.

 

McCain may be unorthodox in terms of some Republican policies, but when it comes to war he is about as hardcore as Republicans get. During his 2008 Presidential campaign, his "Bomb, bomb, bomb Iran" was a common chant of his. As one of the Three Amigos of the Republican Party, he, along with Senators Graham and Ayotte (who replaced Democrat Lieberman), continually promoted military spending and war. 

Quote:

The truth is that McCain was in some ways less a Republican than a neocon by the late 1990s. McCain began his political career as a traditional Republican realist but then became progressively more enamored of what amounted to neoconservative views, which, after all, had their origins in the Democratic party in the early 1970s, when a group of cold war Democrats became disaffected with their party's drift toward George McGovern. For his part, McCain's unusual saga began in Bosnia where he endorsed American intervention. McCain became increasingly more hawkish toward Iraq and Russia. Now Syria is in his target sights.

http://nationalinterest.org/blog/jacob-heilbrunn/goodbye-the-three-amigo...

 

One analysis of McCain and his Amigos concluded:

Quote:

Being supportive of every U.S. war or arguing in favor of more militarism in virtually every case isn’t evidence of any particular expertise.In the cases of Iraq and Afghanistan, the results have been disastrous.

http://fair.org/uncategorized/nyt-goodbye-to-joe/

 

alan smithee alan smithee's picture

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

 

The US is in for some dark days. This presidency is not going to end in a collective realization of what Trump was doing. It will leave them more divided than ever.

Sadly,I think you're right. Question is,how severe will social upheaval be? Or will people roll over and accept it.

Here's someone who thinks people will wake up.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W9qPsRykWYI

 

alan smithee alan smithee's picture

Trump supporters alternate reality

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IgZnrPG37gM

jerrym

Trump's choice for Deputy Secretary of State, superhawk John Bolton, in not completely home free either. MCNBC is reporting that Republican Senator Rand Paul has said this morning that he will not vote to confirm Bolton.

Quote:

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) is urging President-elect Donald Trump not to appoint John Bolton as secretary of State. Bolton has not learned any lessons from one of the biggest foreign policy mistakes in U.S. history — the invasion of Iraq — Paul argued in a Tuesday op-ed on Rare, a website popular with libertarians. “Bolton is a longtime member of the failed Washington elite that Trump vowed to oppose, hell-bent on repeating virtually every foreign policy mistake the U.S. has made in the last 15 years — particularly those Trump promised to avoid as president,” he wrote. 

http://origin-nyi.thehill.com/homenews/senate/306057-paul-warns-against-...

 

 

josh

If Paul and all the Democrats on the Senate Foreign Relations committee vote against him, his nomination will be defeated.

jerrym

McCain is not the only Republican expressing concern over Trump's choice for Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson. Lindsay Graham, the second of the surviving neocon Three Amigos (the third Ayotte was defeated in the November election), has raised concerns about Tillerson over his connections to Russia. Rubio has also raised doubts about Tillerson. 

Of course, none of these concerns having anything to do with Tillerson's pursuit of fossil fuel megagrowth through $500 billion deals with Russia or any other such deals, as Republican dogma affirms climate change does not exist.

The confirmation process could become very interesting. 

Quote:

Already, two leading Republican hawks, Sens. John McCain (Arizona) and Lindsey Graham (South Carolina), have voiced concerns about Tillerson serving as the nation’s top diplomat.

https://www.bostonglobe.com/news/politics/2016/12/10/tillerson-said-trum...

 

Quote:

Sen. Marco Rubio and other GOP senators fired a warning shot this weekend over President-elect Donald Trump’s consideration of ExxonMobil Chairman Rex Tillerson for secretary of state, raising concerns about the global energy titan’s reported Russian ties.

Tillerson is thought to be a favorite for the position of top U.S. diplomat and met again with the president-elect in New York on Saturday, though Trump would not confirm his selection in an interview with “Fox News Sunday.” The president-elect said only that he’s “getting very, very close” to an announcement.

But Rubio, who ran unsuccessfully for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination and later endorsed Trump, posted a thinly veiled warning about Tillerson on Twitter Sunday morning, without mentioning him by name.

Tillerson is reported to have close ties to Russia. Democrats already have seized on the accounts, with the Democratic National Committee preemptively declaring such a choice “another victory for Vladimir Putin.” ...

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., chairman of the Armed Services Committee, told Fox News on Saturday that Putin is a “thug” and while he doesn’t know the nature of Tillerson’s relationship with the Russian leader, it’s a matter of concern

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2016/12/11/gop-senators-challenge-trump-...

 

 

jerrym

The growing body of evidence concerning Rex Tillerson's cozy connections to Putin could sink his confirmation. However, no Senator is yet talking about his record at Exxon and the 20 investigations by State Attorney Generals into Exxon's global warming denials despite the fact Exxon has had evidence from its own research 40 years ago indicating how dangerous fossil feul emissions are for the planet. 

Quote:

Tillerson’s nomination will face fierce resistance from Democrats and environmental activists, who have made Exxon their No. 1 enemy in the fight against fossil fuel companies. Democrats are already planning to press Tillerson during any confirmation hearing about whether the oil giant suppressed decades-old internal research about the threat of climate change, as the company’s critics have alleged.

Tillerson, who has no prior government experience, is the latest wealthy business leader who could be chosen for a top Cabinet post by Trump, joining Steven Mnuchin of Goldman Sachs, who is his choice for treasury secretary, billionaire investor Wilbur Ross, who he tapped to lead the commerce department, and fast-food CEO Andy Puzder as labor secretary. ...

Tillerson ties to Russia and Putin stretch back to the 1990s, and he has been critical of the U.S. sanctions imposed in 2014 that have constrained Exxon’s work in the country. Russia is one of the top three oil producers in the world, along with Saudi Arabia and the United States.

In 2011, Tillerson joined Putin at his vacation home to sign a lucrative deal that allowed Exxon to explore oil fields in Russia’s Arctic. In exchange, state-controlled oil company OAO Rosneft was allowed for the first time to acquire ownership stakes in Exxon projects in the United States. Putin later awarded Tillerson with the “Order of friendship,” one of Russia’s highest honors, for the company’s “big contribution to developing cooperation in the energy sector.”

Tillerson made waves in 2014 when he spoke at an energy summit in Moscow alongside Igor Sechin, a Rosneft executive and close confidant of Putin who has been sanctioned by the Treasury Department.

Exxon has faced scrutiny in the aftermath of a series of investigative reports that allege the company has known for decades about the effect of fossil fuels on climate change. Two state attorneys general — New York’s Eric Schneiderman and Massachusetts’ Maura Healey — have launched fraud investigations into whether Exxon misled the public and its investors about the threat of climate change.

Exxon is fighting the state attorneys general in court. The company has said the investigations are politically motivated. An Exxon spokesman declined to comment for this story.

http://www.politico.eu/article/trump-likely-to-tap-tillerson-for-secreta...

 

jerrym

It's possible that having Trump insiders putting Tillerson's and Bolton's names forward as having been selected is a trial balloon to see how much flack they knew they would catch before making Trump makes his official announcement.

jerrym

Former Obama Acting Secretary of Labor Seth Harris is alreay calling Tilllerson the most imperilled Trump candidate for confirmation because of the split in the Republican party between the Trumpites who want a friendly relationship with Russia and the traditional Republicans who see Russia primarily as an adversary. 

jerrym

Bolton views the rest of the world with disdain, as can be seen in the following article by him just last month: "The new order is our chance to keep up in fast changing world". However, he does suggest that Canada could play a part in this new order. How thoughtful.

Quote:

In the closing days of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, crowds at his rallies frequently broke into chants of “Drain the swamp!” The swamp in question was Washington, which Trump voters generally saw as interested only in preserving its own comfortable status. ...

There is also considerable swampy territory abroad, where international organisations sometimes act as if they are governments rather than associations of governments and sprout bureaucracies with pretensions beyond those of cosseted elites in national capitals. These international swamplands have thrived under the Obama administration, but their days may now be numbered. ...

Similarly, the Brexit referendum was, above all else, a reassertion of British sovereignty, a declaration of independence from would-be rulers who, while geographically close, were remote from the peasantry they sought to rule. The peasants have now spoken. Unable to drain the Brussels swamps alone, Britain walked away, which the US has itself done on occasion, withdrawing from Unesco under Ronald Reagan (joined by Margaret Thatcher’s Britain). The Brexit decision was deplored by British and American elites alike, but not by most US conservatives, and definitely not by Donald Trump. ...

Now, with some imagination and resolve, London and Washington can fashion a new economic relationship, perhaps involving Canada, with the potential for significant economic growth. Let the EU wallow in strangling economic regulation, and the euro albatross that Britain wisely never joined.

https://www.aei.org/publication/the-new-order-is-our-chance-to-keep-up-i...

jerrym

Another November article outlines what Bolton sees as the United States five greatest challenges. Point number three does suggest how a Trump administration might both see Russia as a threat and an ally and thus help explain the strange pairing of Bolton and Tillerson as State Department nominees. 

Quote:

First, and almost certainly the highest national-security priority for voters last Tuesday, are the closely related threats of radical Islamic terrorism and the Middle East’s spreading chaos. ...

Second, nuclear proliferation, primarily by Iran and North Korea, is continuing and even accelerating. Obama’s cherished nuclear deal with Tehran has not contained Iran’s nuclear program, has not stopped its cooperation with Pyongyang, and has not changed its offensive behavior across the Middle East.  ... Moving vigorously to eliminate the rising proliferation tidal wave will either be the hallmark of Trump’s presidency — or possibly its epitaph.

Third, Vladimir Putin’s Russia is on the prowl in Eastern Europe and the Middle East in ways unprecedented since the Cold War.  ... Utilizing Russia effectively against Islamic terrorism and in the epic struggle with China may seem contradictory, but all are possible with renewed U.S. strength of purpose and the attendant resources, political and economic as well as military.

Fourth, China’s belligerent assertion of territorial claims in the South and East China Seas, its extensive military buildup, and its disdain for international commitments in trade and other fields all demonstrate not merely the attributes of a rising regional power, but one that neither respects nor fears the consequences of ignoring or even humiliating America. ...

Finally, although mostly ignored during the campaign, global governance will inevitably pose increasing challenges for America. Trump’s campaign indirectly addressed part of this issue on immigration, but the fundamental importance of protecting U.S. sovereignty is far broader and more complex. Obama is entirely content with surrendering vital decisions to multinational organizations, courts and treaties, even while we are seeing key projects to diminish the authority of the nation-state begin to come apart. ...

https://www.aei.org/publication/next-presidents-foreign-policy-priorities/

 

jerrym

In the New Yorker magazine, Steve Coll has a great analysis of Tillerson's character and the Exxon corporate culture in which it developed from his entry into the firm in early adulthood in 1975. Its based on a book he wrote: Private Empire ExxonMobil and American Power. It helps one understand how Tillerson is likely to operate as Secretary of State.

Quote:

Tillerson’s life has been shaped to a profound extent by two institutions: ExxonMobil and the Boy Scouts of America. He grew up in Texas, where his father was a modestly compensated administrator for the Scouts. Tillerson became an Eagle Scout.  ...

Of all the companies that were born out of the breakup of Standard Oil, Exxon is culturally the most direct descendant of John D. Rockefeller’s monopolistic giant, which was organized on principles of ruthless capitalism and Protestant faith. Exxon today is an unusually cloistered corporation that promotes virtually all of its top executives from within. Former executives I interviewed mentioned that as recently as the nineteen-seventies, it was not unusual to start company meetings with a prayer. ...

 In public appearances, he comes across as sophisticated, yet his life is rooted in environments that are fundamentally nostalgic for imagined midcentury virtues and for the days when burning fossil fuels did not threaten to trigger catastrophic climate change. Tillerson once listed his favorite book as “Atlas Shrugged,” Ayn Rand’s 1957 novel that has become a touchstone for libertarians and promoters of unbridled capitalism. ...

Tillerson’s success within Exxon was attributable in part to the work he has done in Russia. He has forged close relations with both President Vladimir Putin and Igor Sechin, the close Putin ally who runs Rosneft, one of Russia’s oil-and-gas giants. In 2011, Tillerson flew to the Black Sea resort of Sochi to sign a joint-venture agreement with Putin under which ExxonMobil would partner with Rosneft to produce oil from the Arctic, a project made easier by the retreat of Arctic sea ice, due to global warming. Economic sanctions imposed on Russia because of its annexation of Crimea and its military interference in Ukraine have slowed this collaboration. If Tillerson is confirmed, he would be in a position to benefit the corporation where he spent his career, by, for example, advocating for the easing of Russian sanctions. In general, Tillerson and ExxonMobil have argued against economic sanctions as an instrument of American foreign policy. Tillerson’s compensation over the years has included large amounts of Exxon stock; he would presumably be required to divest those holdings, but at a minimum, the appearance of a conflict of interest would remain, because of his long service at Exxon and the wealth it has given him.

The main themes of “Private Empire” involved the ways that ExxonMobil saw itself as an independent, transnational corporate sovereign in the world, a power independent of the American government, one devoted firmly to shareholder interests and possessed of its own foreign policy. Exxon’s foreign policy sometimes had more impact on the countries where it operated than did the State Department. ...

In Kurdistan, during the Obama Administration, Tillerson defied State Department policy and cut an independent oil deal with the Kurdish Regional Government, undermining the national Iraqi government in Baghdad. ExxonMobil did not ask permission. After the fact, Tillerson arranged a conference call with State Department officials and explained his actions, according to my sources, by saying, “I had to do what was best for my shareholders.”

The goal of ExxonMobil’s independent foreign policy has been to promote a world that is good for oil and gas production. Because oil projects require huge amounts of capital and only pay off fully over decades, Tillerson has favored doing business in countries that offer political stability, even if this stability was achieved through authoritarian rule. As he once put it, “We’re really thinking about, well, what is it going to be fifteen, twenty years from now, and so what are the conditions in some of these countries likely to be?” ....

Some of the Exxon executives I interviewed spoke about Washington with disdain, if not contempt. They regarded the State Department as generally unhelpful, a bureaucracy of liberal career diplomats who were biased against oil and incompetent when it came to sensitive and complex oil-deal negotiations. They managed Congress defensively, and as just one capital among many in the world, a place more likely to produce trouble for Exxon than benefits. In nominating Tillerson, Trump is handing the State Department to a man who has worked his whole life running a parallel quasi-state, for the benefit of shareholders, fashioning relationships with foreign leaders that may or may not conform to the interests of the United States government. ...

http://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/rex-tillerson-from-a-corporate-o...

 

 

josh

Which ties into Michael Kinsley's point that Trump,embraces fascism.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/donald-trump-is-actually-a-fasci...

Rev Pesky

Bolton suggests the hacks were a 'false flag' operation of the Obama administration:

Bolton on Russian hacks

Quote:
Ambassador John Bolton claimed Sunday that hacks during the election season could have been "a false flag" operation — possibly committed by the Obama administration itself.

In an interview with Fox News' Eric Shawn, Bolton questioned why FBI Director James Comey said during the investigation of Hillary Clinton's private server, there was no direct evidence found of foreign intelligence service penetration, but cyber fingerprints were found in regards to the presidential election.

..."It is not at all clear to me just viewing this from the outside, that this hacking into the DNC and the RNC computers was not a false flag," Bolton said. "So the question has to be asked, why did the Russians run their smart intelligence service against Hillary's server, but their dumb intelligence service against the election?"

Shawn then asked Bolton — who has been mentioned as a possible Trump appointment — if he was accusing someone in "the administration or in the intelligence community of" the alleged false flag.

"We just don't know," Bolton said. "But I believe that the intelligence community has been politicized in the Obama administration to a very significant degree."

...When asked by Shawn about those who could be bothered by the false flag claim, Bolton said there needs to be more information as to how the intelligence community came to the conclusion.

"We would want to know who else might want to influence the election and why they would leave fingerprints that point to the Russians," Bolton said. "That's why I say until we know more about how the intelligence community came to this conclusion, we don't whether it's Russian inspired or a false flag."

Not much one can say about this. Why Obama would intervene to try and defeat Hilary Clinton in the election is not clear to me. Bolton appears to have wandered off into UFO land. He also suggested in the interview that there should be 'retaliation' against the Russians if it turns out it was they, and not the Obama administration, who were responsible. No indicaton of what that retaliation might consist of.

Bolton is going to be an important person in the Trump administration.  It may be time to start looking for a new planet.

jerrym

The Inside Climate News uses internal documents to show that ExxonMobil (and nearly all major oil companies) and its top executives, including Tillerson, knew from its own research from the 1970s onwards that carbon dioxide emissions were catastrophic for the planet despite the fossil fuel industry's climate change denials. The articles listed below can be found at the website at the bottom of the page, as well as individually within the quotes.

No doubt Tillerson would as Secretary of State, in collusion with Trump, continue to promote the fossil fuel industry no matter what the now staggering body of evdence says or how bad global warming gets.

The last post and this one show we now have a new group of Three Amigos, Trump, Tillerson and Bolton, linked by patholgoical lying.  

 

Quote:

Exxon's Own Research Confirmed Fossil Fuels' Role in Global Warming Decades Ago Top executives were warned of possible catastrophe from greenhouse effect, then led efforts to block solutions.

 

https://insideclimatenews.org/news/16092015/exxon-believed-deep-dive-int...

Exxon documents show that top corporate managers were aware of their scientists' early conclusions about carbon dioxide's impact on the climate. They reveal that scientists warned management that policy changes to address climate change might affect profitability. After a decade of frank internal discussions on global warming and conducting unbiased studies on it, Exxon changed direction in 1989 and spent more than 20 years discrediting the research its own scientists had once confirmed.

 

Exxon Confirmed Global Warming Consensus in 1982 with In-House Climate Models The company chairman would later mock climate models as unreliable while he campaigned to stop global action to reduce fossil fuel emissions.

 

Exxon's Business Ambition Collided with Climate Change Under a Distant Sea Throughout the 1980s, the company struggled to solve the carbon problem of one of the biggest gas fields in the world out of concern for climate impacts.

 

Highlighting the Allure of Synfuels, Exxon Played Down the Climate Risks In the 1980s, Exxon lobbied to replace scarce oil with synthetic fossil fuels, but it glossed over the high carbon footprint associated with synfuels.

Exxon Sowed Doubt About Climate Science for Decades by Stressing Uncertainty Collaborating with the Bush-Cheney White House, Exxon turned ordinary scientific uncertainties into weapons of mass confusion.

 

Exxon Made Deep Cuts in Climate Research Budget in the 1980s The cuts ushered in a five-year hiatus in peer-reviewed publication by its scientists and the era when the company first embraced disinformation.

 

https://insideclimatenews.org/news/01122015/documents-exxons-early-co2-p...

Documents reveal Exxon's early CO2 position, its global warming forecast from the 1980s, and its involvement with the issue at the highest echelons.

 

https://insideclimatenews.org/news/22122015/exxon-mobil-oil-industry-pee...

Members of an American Petroleum Institute task force on CO2 included scientists from nearly every major oil company, including Exxon, Texaco and Shell.

 

https://insideclimatenews.org/content/Exxon-The-Road-Not-Taken

 

 

 

jerrym

Trump confirmed today that Tillerson is his choice for Secretary of State. Not only has Tillerson signed a $500 billion fossil fuel dollar deal with Russia, primarily in the most sensitive environment to fossil fuel exploration and exploitation, the Arctic, he is an ardent free trader, one of the issues Trump ardently campaigned against.

Damn temperature increase, sea level rise, species extinction and the hundreds of millions of climate change refugees. There's billions to be made!

Quote:

Donald Trump has selected ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson as his pick for secretary of state, the transition team announced Tuesday morning in a press release. ...

If confirmed by the Senate, Tillerson, who has spent his entire career at the oil company, would be the first secretary of state without any government or military experience in U.S. history. Trump met twice with Tillerson in person before his selection, after weeks of meetings with other contenders such as Mitt Romney, Gen. David Petraeus and Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn. ...

A supporter of free trade, he has a professional relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin dating back to the 1990s. In 2011, ExxonMobil signed an agreement with Rosneft, an energy company majority-owned by the Russian government, to drill for oil in the Arctic. ...

Already, a number of Republican senators have expressed concerns about Tillerson's relationship with Russia, which could pose a challenge for his confirmation in committee votes and on the Senate floor.

http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/trump-announces-exxonmobil-ceo-rex-tiller...

 

jerrym

The selection of Tillerson and Bolton send a loud and clear message on where he intends to go during his presidency. 

 

Quote:

With the presumed designation of Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State, and former U.S. Ambassador to the UN John Bolton as Deputy Secretary of State, Donald Trump will be sending a clear message to the world: the U.S. is open for business (presumably to the highest bidder), it will be carrying a big stick, there will be no speaking softly, and the operative word will be “bulldozer.” There will effectively be no subtlety, no negotiation, and no shades of grey: starting in January, it will be Trump’s way or the highway.

For those Trump voters who might have imagined that he would assemble a cabinet and team of advisors attuned to the needs of the blue-collar worker or man in the street, it should be becoming crystal clear by now that they have been hoodwinked. Instead, the Trump Administration is turning out to be the domain of big business, billionaires, and Goldman Sachs. How anyone could have imagined that a man who has never worked a blue-collar day in his life nor associated with ordinary people until his run for the presidency would be genuinely transformed into the champion of the working class always defied logic. Given that Trump has so far refused to personally divest himself of his business interests during his presidency, it is plain for all to see that he plans to enrich himself and his family on the backs of the American economy. Tillerson’s appointment would be consistent with that objective. ...

By comparison, Bolton has good diplomatic credentials. Apart from his brief stint at the UN, Bolton was an Undersecretary of State, has held a number of other positions in government and at prestigious think tanks in Washington, and won praise for his work in establishing the Proliferation Security Initiative. However, some of his critics have alleged that Bolton has tried to spin intelligence to support his own political views. His bluntness has earned him a variety of governmental enemies, with Iran’s foreign ministry having called him “rude” and “undiplomatic,” and North Korea’s government having referred to him as “human scum.” This is not a particularly good place to start if one of the Trump Administration’s foreign policy objectives is to make progress with America’s most ardent foes. It would appear that his objective is exactly the opposite.

What is clear is that one of Trump’s near-term goals is to strengthen America’s relationship with Russia. Given that Tillerson is extremely close with Putin, his role in the government would certainly be a step in that direction. But Russia is an issue in which Tillerson and Bolton will surely butt heads. As a high-profile neocon, Bolton has a traditional view of Russia as ‘the enemy’. ...

Trump’s approach to creating a government, running the government, and crafting a foreign policy has all the makings of a business transaction in which he imagines that everyone else in the world can’t wait to ‘do business’ with America, and that the U.S. is the world’s first choice - for everything. That is obviously his world view, which, he believes, has been the key to his success, and is central to America’s future success. He, and America, are in for a rude awakening with this approach, however. Many of its allies — particularly in Europe — are already wondering if Trump’s America is worth being allied with, questioning basic tenets of American post-war foreign policy, and whether the U.S. can be depended upon to adhere to its historical and ‘binding’ security, aid, and other commitments. America’s enemies must already have come to the conclusion that, at least for the next four years, there is no point in even trying to negotiate with a U.S. president and administration that subscribes to a ‘heads I win, tails you lose’ view of the world. ...

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/daniel-wagner/trumps-foreign-policy-und_b_...

 

 

 

 

jerrym

Further reinforcing Trump's global-warming-be-damned message is his choice for the Secretary of Energy, Rick Perry. Yes, that Rick Perry of the "Oops" moment who couldn't even remember that the Department of Energy was one of the three Departments that he wanted to abolish during the 2012 campaign. Yes, that Rick Perry who is a climate change denier. Of course, we can at least relax with the knowledge that he will also be in charge of making sure that the US's aging nuclear weapons and reactors are safely stored and cleaned up. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0uvmKnFY4uk

 

 

 

 

jerrym

Of course there's even more to be concerned about with Secretary of Energy Perry, including ratifying the Keystone pipeline. 

 

Quote:

It’s sad commentary on yet another dubious Trump cabinet appointment. Sadder still is how ill-equipped Perry is to lead this critically important national security agency.

The DOE is responsible for advancing the national, economic, and energy security of the US, promoting scientific and technological innovation in support of that mission (which weirdly includes genetics), and ensuring the safety and cleanup of America’s aging nuclear weapons. It’s also concerned with overseeing the nation’s programs on nuclear nonproliferation and counterterrorism. So important is this position, that the last two DOE secretaries included a Nobel Laureate (Steven Chu) and a professor from MIT (Ernest Moniz).

Instead, this is a man who now openly questions the integrity of scientists, dismisses environmental risks posed by such things as greenhouse gases, fracking, and pipelines, and sees fossil fuels as a viable energy source for literally centuries to come. Perry is an unabashed climate change skeptic who once said:

I do believe that the issue of global warming has been politicized. I think there are a substantial number of scientists who have manipulated data so that they will have dollars rolling into their projects. And I think we are seeing almost weekly or even daily scientists are coming forward and questioning the original idea that man-made global warming is what is causing the climate to change. Yes our climate’s changed, they’ve been changing ever since the earth was born. But I do not buy into a group of scientists who have in some cases found to be manipulating this information. And the cost to the country and the world of implementing these anti-carbon programs is in the billions if not trillions of dollars at the end of the day. And I don’t think, from my perspective, that I want America to be engaged in spending that much money still on a scientific theory that has not been proven, and from my perspective, is being put more and more into question. ...

Perry is vehemently opposed to regulations placed on greenhouse gas emissions, saying they’ll have “devastating implications” to the nation’s economy and the energy industry. At the same time, he’d like to expand the practice of hydraulic fracturing for oil and gas, while authorizing construction of the controversial XL Pipeline. ...

Perry once told an audience of Pennsylvania steelworkers that he would “create another 250,000 jobs by getting the EPA out of the way” of natural gas drilling. He also claimed he could create 1.2 million jobs by increasing American energy production. To make it happen, he would open up numerous areas currently off-limits to oil and gas exploration, and repeal regulations he believes are hampering domestic production of fossil fuels, including drilling in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and the Gulf of Mexico.

http://gizmodo.com/why-rick-perry-will-be-a-disaster-as-energy-secretary...

 

jerrym

With Trump's selection of Ryan Zinke for Interior Secretary, he has achieved a trifecta of global warming deniers on both the national and international stage. As the Interior Secretary also deals with American First Nations, Zinke will be taking 'forceful' action with the Standing Rock rabble.

Quote:

The Interior Department oversees management of about three-quarters of federal land and natural resources, along with programs relating to American Indian and territorial affairs.

Zinke is a strong supporter of coal, oil and gas exploration and development with a 3 percent rating from the League of Conservation Voters, an environmental advocacy group.  ...

The environmental group Greenpeace called Zinke a "climate change denier" whose "real constituency is the fossil industry and coal companies." 

http://www.cnbc.com/2016/12/13/ryan-zinke-has-been-tapped-as-president-e...

 

 

 

 

 

 

jerrym

More evidence of trouble for both Bolton and Tillerson in the upcoming Senate confirmation process. 

Bolton considered George W. Bush too moderate which is why the title of the article below is "Trump's flirtation with Bolton sends shivers through Senate".

 

Quote:

Donald Trump’s selection of ExxonMobil chief Rex Tillerson as secretary of state threatens to touch off a confirmation fight, but the man in the running to be Tillerson’s deputy could spark an all-out war in the Senate.

John Bolton, the mustache-sporting, Iraq War-cheering former United Nations ambassador, is possibly one of the least diplomatic diplomats ever to serve in the U.S. government. He has argued the U.S. should bomb Iran to stop its nuclear program, dismissed the idea of a Palestinian state and called the United Nations a "twilight zone." ...

Already, Republican Sen. Rand Paul, a Kentuckian with a libertarian bent, has threatened to block Bolton, a man he considers a warmonger. On Tuesday, Chuck Schumer, the incoming leader of the Senate Democrats, explicitly compared Tillerson and Bolton in a statement that clearly laid bare his preference, saying: "Mr. Tillerson’s worldview may not seem to be as dangerously interventionist as Mr. Bolton’s. ...

His time at the U.N. did little to endear him to Democrats or the international community. Bolton harbors a deep distrust of multinational institutions, and organizations such as the U.N. and the European Union, to him, are threats to national sovereignty and bloated, often-useless bureaucracies. ...

Bolton hinted in his book that he became disillusioned with Republican president Bush as the years went on because he appeared to succumb to political pressure from the left to be more moderate. On the Bush administration's struggle to deal with North Korea and its nuclear program, for instance, "the permanent government has triumphed over Bush, or at least over his principles," Bolton wrote, adding that as some Bush aides left, "the departure of many 'hardliners' was like eliminating players from the defense team in football." ...

In 2015, Bolton called on the U.S. to bomb Iran to stop its nuclear program, and he's urged Trump to abandon the nuclear agreement Obama reached with the Islamic Republic later that year. ,,,,

Bolton is deeply pro-Israel, so much so that he's suggested forgetting the idea of creating a Palestinian state. Instead, he's argued for placing the Gaza Strip under Egyptian control and handing the West Bank to Jordan. The left-leaning Jewish advocacy group J Street is among those urging Trump not to place Bolton at State. ...

Bolton also has a wariness of treaties and international law. While serving as undersecretary of state for arms, Bolton helped engineer the withdrawal of the U.S. from the 1972 U.S.-Soviet Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty. During his tenure at the U.N., he came out against proposals that the U.S. believed would have imposed new legal obligations on nations to intervene in other countries to prevent mass atrocities. ...

Bolton also has flirted with the fringes of the right, including people who traffic in anti-Muslim conspiracy theories. He wrote the forward to "The Post-American Presidency: The Obama Administration's War on America," a book co-authored by Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer, two figures viewed as stridently anti-Muslim by civil rights activists. He's also been friendly with far-right European leaders such as Britain's Nigel Farage. ...

During the 2016 presidential campaign, Bolton repeatedly said Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton should be in jail.  ...

Not all members of the foreign policy establishment are writing off Bolton's chances in the Senate this time. Lawmakers may be open to someone who can balance out Trump's isolationist streak and who understands the U.S. bureaucracy. Trump's lack of foreign policy knowledge and Tillerson's lack of government experience also could boost Bolton. ...

In his book, Bolton expressed strong displeasure with the way U.S. diplomats think and operate, suggesting a good deal could change if he gains much power over the foreign service. He argued the State Department needs a "cultural revolution" in which its diplomats understand that their client is the United States, not the country they are dealing with, and in which they act more like litigators defending American interests.

http://www.politico.com/story/2016/12/john-bolton-state-trump-232573

 

jerrym

With the trifecta of global warming deniers in cabinet nominees Secretary of State Tillerson, Secretary of Energy Rick Perry, and Interior Secretary Zinke, as well as the proposal by a top-level Trump advisor that all funding for NASA's climate change research be terminated, climate scientists are so concerned about a purge of climate change scientists and data that they are feverishly copying US government data on global warming.

Thay are also refusing to identify who in the Department of Energy was involved in climate change research as they fear this will lead to their being fired. So far they have been successful in refusing to divulge these names. 

ETA: 2017 will be the new 1984.

Quote:

The Department of Energy has refused to respond to the Trump transition team's chilling 74-question document seeking the names of anyone who has worked on climate change in the department. Climate scientists are also acting feverishly to preserve data after a senior Trump campaign adviser suggested eliminating all funding for NASA's climate research programs. ...

Scientists are rushing to copy decades of critical climate information that could be altered or destroyed under a hostile Trump Administration.

Two university professors are calling for a hackathon in collaboration with the Internet Archive's End of Term 2016 project, which will archive federal online pages and data that they fear could disappear after Jan. 20, 2017. Separately, the ad-hoc Climate Mirror project seeks to store key datasets and keep them publicly available. 

The Climate Science Legal Defense Fund (CSLDF) has published a 16-page guide for government researchers whose work may be suppressed. ...

Sentiment is shared at the DOE, which is why they are refusing to share names with Trump's transition team. 

"We are going to respect the professional and scientific integrity and independence of our employees at our labs and across our department," Energy Department spokesman Eben Burnham-Snyder said in an email to The Washington Post.

"We will be forthcoming with all publicly available information with the transition team. We will not be providing any individual names to the transition team."

The gravest danger to these federal employees may be that they will lose their jobs in an anti-climate purge.  ...

In response, scientists are speaking out. "We cannot normalize science denial," the Union of Concerned Scientists stated.

On Nov. 30, more than 2,300 scientists published an open letter to Trump urging him to allow them to "conduct their work without political or private-sector interference."  ...

http://www.ecowatch.com/nasa-climate-scientists-trump-2146674752.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

jerrym

Trump's selection of Tillerson for Secretary of State, Rick Perry for Secretary of Energy and Zinke for Interior Secretarry is part of a process of climate change denialism taken to even higher level, in which intimidation and firing of climate scientists who speak out about the dangers of global warming, as noted in the last post, is central to their aplproach on this issue. In fact, global warming denialism has become a industry in itself, thanks to funding frpm the fossil fuel industry. This approach is based on the deny, doubt delay strategy made famous by the tobacco industry.

 

 

Quote:

 

Climate change denial, or global warming denial, is part of the global warming controversy. It involves denial, dismissal, unwarranted doubt or contrarian views which depart from the scientific opinion on climate change, including the extent to which it is caused by humans, its impacts on nature and human society, or the potential of adaptation to global warming by human actions.[2][3][4] In the global warming controversy, some deniers do endorse the term, but other often prefer the term climate change skepticism[3] whereas scientists think it "inappropriate to allow those who deny [anthropogenic global warming] to don the mantle of skeptics"; in effect, the two terms form a continuous, overlapping range of views, and generally have the same characteristics: both reject, to a greater or lesser extent, mainstream scientific opinion on climate change.[5][6] Climate change denial can also be implicit, when individuals or social groups accept the science but fail to come to terms with it or to translate their acceptance into action.[7] Several social science studies have analyzed these positions as forms of denialism.[5][6]

Campaigning to undermine public trust in climate science has been described as a "denial machine" of industrial, political and ideological interests, supported by conservative media and skeptical bloggers in manufacturing uncertainty about global warming.[8][9][10] In the public debate, phrases such as climate skepticism have frequently been used with the same meaning as climate denialism.[11] The labels are contested: those actively challenging climate science commonly describe themselves as "skeptics", but many do not comply with common standards of scientific skepticism and, regardless of evidence, persistently deny the validity of human caused global warming.[5]

Although scientific opinion on climate change is that human activity is extremely likely to be the primary driver of climate change,[12][13] the politics of global warming have been affected by climate change denial, hindering efforts to prevent climate change and adapt to the warming climate.[14][15][16] Those promoting denial commonly use rhetorical tactics to give the appearance of a scientific controversy where there is none. 

The climate change denial industry is most widespread in the United States, where the official Senate Environmental Committee is chaired by Jim Inhofe, who famously called climate change “the greatest hoax ever perpetrated on the American people” and claimed to have debunked it in 2015 when he took a snowball with him and threw it on the Senate floor.[19] Organised campaigning to undermine public trust in climate science is associated with conservative economic policies and backed by industrial interests opposed to the regulation of CO2 emissions.[20] Climate change denial has been associated with the fossil fuels lobby, the Koch brothers, industry advocates and libertarian think tanks, often in the United States.[15][21][22][23] More than 90% of papers sceptical on climate change originate from right-wing think tanks.[24] The total annual income of these climate change counter-movement-organizations is roughly $900 million. ...

Since the late 1970s, oil companies have published research broadly in line with the standard views on global warming. Despite this, oil companies organized a climate change denial campaign to disseminate public disinformation for several decades, leading to comparisons of this strategy to the organized denial of the hazards of tobacco smoking by tobacco companies. ...

From 1989 onwards industry funded organisations including the Global Climate Coalition and the George C. Marshall Institute sought to spread doubt among the public, in a strategy already developed by the tobacco industry.[66][67][68] A small group of scientists opposed to the consensus on global warming became politically involved, and with support from conservative political interests, began publishing in books and the press rather than in scientific journals.[69] Spencer Weart identifies this period as the point where legitimate skepticism about basic aspects of climate science was no longer justified, and those spreading mistrust about these issues became deniers.[70] As their arguments were increasingly refuted by the scientific community and new data, deniers turned to political arguments, making personal attacks on the reputation of scientists, and promoting ideas of a global warming conspiracy. ...

In the 1990s, the Marshall Institute began campaigning against increased regulations on environmental issues such as acid rainozone depletion, second-hand smoke, and the dangers of DDT.[67][73][74] In each case their argument was that the science was too uncertain to justify any government intervention, a strategy it borrowed from earlier efforts to downplay the health effects of tobacco in the 1980s.[66][68] This campaign would continue for the next two decades. ...

Gelbspan's Boiling Point, published in 2004, detailed the fossil-fuel industry's campaign to deny climate change and undermine public confidence in climate science.[86] In Newsweek's August 2007 cover story "The Truth About Denial", Sharon Begley reported that "the denial machine is running at full throttle", and said that this "well-coordinated, well-funded campaign" by contrarian scientistsfree-market think tanks, and industry had "created a paralyzing fog of doubt around climate change."[41]

Referencing work of sociologists Robert Antonio and Robert Brulle, Wayne A. White has written that climate change denial has become the top priority in a broader agenda against environmental regulation being pursued by neoliberals. ...

The New York Times and others reported in 2015 that oil companies knew that burning oil and gas could cause climate change and global warming since the 1970s but nonetheless funded deniers for years.[28][29] Dana Nuccitelli wrote in The Guardian that a small fringe group of climate deniers were no longer taken seriously at the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference, in an agreement that "we need to stop delaying and start getting serious about preventing a climate crisis. ...

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Climate_change_denial

 

josh

Trump's plan to drown World in Oil is a Planetary Nightmare 

http://www.juancole.com/2016/12/trumps-planetary-nightmare.html 

 

montrealer58 montrealer58's picture

Kevin O'Leary just said on TV that he was buying Exxon stock

jerrym

josh wrote:
If Paul and all the Democrats on the Senate Foreign Relations committee vote against him, his nomination will be defeated.

 

You are right Josh. Rand Paul has repeated that he will vote against Bolton in the last couple of days. Since the Senate Foreign Relations committee has 10 Republicans and 9 Republicans this will block Bolton, providing all the Democrats vote against him, which is highly likely.

Quote:

Senator Rand Paul wants nothing to do with John Bolton, the former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, whom President-elect Donald Trump reportedly pegged as No. 2 in the State Department.

 

“I’m an automatic no on Bolton,” Paul said on ABC’s “This Week” on Sunday. “He should get nowhere close to the State Department.”

Paul, a Republican who serves on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, may hold the deciding vote that determines Bolton’s fate. With 10 Republicans and nine Democrats on the committee, Paul’s vote against Bolton could block the hawkish foreign policy czar from getting out of committee, thereby barring him from reaching the Senate where a simple majority vote would confirm his nomination. 

“John Bolton doesn’t get it. He still believes in regime change. He’s still a big cheerleader for the Iraq War,” Paul said. “John Bolton is so far out of it and has such a naive understanding of the world.”

http://www.salon.com/2016/12/12/rand-paul-says-hell-vote-against-john-bo...

 

 

jerrym

SNL’: Alec Baldwin’s Trump Joined By John Goodman’s Rex Tillerson

http://www.vanityfair.com/hollywood/2016/12/snl-trump-alec-baldwin-putin...

 

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

josh
swallow swallow's picture

I think it's a mistake to focus on Tillerson's favourable stance towards Russia. It'll be a nice change to see a Secretary of State who wants less US-Russia confrontation instead of more. 

The real problem here is that Big Oil is in command of US foreign policy. Though I suppose they always have been, in a sense.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
It'll be a nice change to see a Secretary of State who wants less US-Russia confrontation instead of more.

I know, right?

It'll be nice to get a break after 8 years of side-eye.

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