With all due respect to Fleetwood Mac, let me once again borrow these lyrics this Monday in May. Typing Monday in May reminds me of another song lyric by Three Dog Night, “I’ve got pieces of April, but it’s a morning in May.”
Now that I have provided two ear worms in one paragraph, let me throw out a few thoughts:
– the US debt ceiling increase has once again become a game of playing chicken; my strong advice to all concerned – GET IT DONE. Then, spend the needed time with data and look at both tax increases and spending cuts as both will be needed. I am not sure what frustrates me most, the playing chicken with the debt or the callous disregard for a thoughtful exercise to address the problem. Republicans have shown they only care about the debt when not in power and Democrats need to think through some spending cuts that can be made, along with tax increases that the GOP abhors.
– the environmental concerns we have caused are becoming more apparent as the detection of forever chemicals are cropping up in more places. I have often cited Dr. Sandra Steingraber, who is a biologist, ecologist and bladder cancer survivor. We humans do not consider enough the role the environment plays on our health often focusing only on hereditary concerns. When we do focus on them, we tend to consider the impact on a 50 year old man, when we should be considering the impact on children who are closer to the ground, mouth breathe more, place hands in their mouth more and whose lungs and brain are not fully developed. The exposure and impact is simply greater for a child than an adult.
– speaking of children, we owe it to them to crank up the efforts of dealing with climate change in an all hands on deck manner. There are several examples of action in motion that should be accelerated with funding. We must stop putting as much carbon in the air and start taking carbon out of the air. We also need to deal with the increase in methane that is escaping from vented natural gas sites and through the arctic ice as it melts. There are natural carbon eaters such as mangroves along the shore, large forests, offshore kelp farms, etc. that can be nurtured. Plus, they are investing more in renewable energy sources that take advantage of the natural elements to a region be they solar, wind, tidal, geothermal, etc. Progress has been made, but a lot more is needed, now.
These are only a few key things we need to discuss. I am tired of politicians who flitter from various sensational issues and causing problems rather than solving them. If hurting our children by not dealing with toxins, destroying our planet or leaving them with our debts is not sensational enough, I don’t know what it is.
Let me close with an example. Living in North Carolina, I have been aware of the push on the Department of Defense for decades to effectively deal with the toxic water at Camp Lejeune that was killing US Marines and their families. The base families finally got their attention when they served the ugly looking and odorous water to the leaders when they came to visit. It should not take that long to address these issues.
I wrote the following post four years ago, but these stories still warrant attention. If your family has property on the coast, make sure you read this. The footnote is of interest as well.
In my newspaper today, two articles caught my eye about the impact of rising seas. The first is an editorial entitled “Rising seas eroding coastal property values,” written by Orrin Pilkey, the co-author of a study of this subject.
The other is an article called “Highest tide in 50 years swamps Venice,” by Elisabetta Povoledo of The New York Times. Beginning with the sensational, per Povoledo, “The Mayor of Venice, who said that the city ‘was on its knees’ has called for a state of emergency and the closing of all schools after the Italian city was submerged under…an exceptionally high tide – the highest in 50 years.”
At six-feet, the rising sea level in Venice was the most since 1966. Yet, per the article, “Last year, as severe weather in Italy killed 11 people, ferocious winds drove the high tide in Venice to more than five feet above average sea level.”
In Pilkey’s editorial, the study was reported in his book with Keith Pilkey called “Sea level rise: a slow Tsunami on America’s shores.” “The First Foundation, a non-profit research group with flood risk, analyzed 13.3 million real estate transactions, and compared the results to 25.6 million properties along the east coast and Gulf coast of the US. They concluded that there was a $15.8 billion loss in home value appreciation between Maine and Texas from 2015 to 2017.”
Pilkey made reference to increasing “sunny day flooding.” They note the sunny day flooding will increase even more until it becomes more permanent. In essence the sea water comes up through the storm drains in the street leaving standing water. A key quote toward the end of the article is a warning. “I know that if my family were living in or near a sunny day flooding area, I would urge them to sell and leave.”
Low lying coastal cities are at great risk. Global climate scientists have long said the City of Miami is the most at risk city in the world. Miami Beach is already seeing many more days of sunny day flooding. The state that had the most property loss in value is Florida. I would hope the leaders of that state would be banging the drum the loudest. As for Venice, they rely so much on tourism. Yet, that future looks to be at grave risk given its low sea level status.
Note further: A famous climate change “denier” in words does not match his rhetoric with his actions. Per a Politico article in May, 2016 entitled “Trump acknowledges climate change — at his golf course:”
“The New York billionaire is applying for permission to erect a coastal protection works to prevent erosion at his seaside golf resort, Trump International Golf Links and Hotel Ireland, in County Clare. A permit application for the wall, filed by Trump International Golf Links Ireland and reviewed by POLITICO, explicitly cites global warming and its consequences — increased erosion due to rising sea levels and extreme weather this century — as a chief justification for building the structure.” These actions support the concerns of the Pilkey study of property values being at risk due to sea level rise.
Apparently, I missed the announcement of the Florida governor running for president. I have seen a well-polished commercial that masks over all his warts starting this weekend, so I guess he is in. In anticipation of this, I sent the following letter to my hometown Florida newspaper in hopes they would print it. Please feel free to adapt and use.
In my home state of Florida, several major problems go undiscussed and unresolved. Climate change, environmental maltreatment, healthcare costs, better gun governance, job retraining, fresh water shortage, etc. Instead, the governor and legislature focus on contrived or exaggerated issues like wokeness, critical race theory, banning books that dare speak of our ugly history and punishing people and companies who act in an egalitarian manner.
It is quite disappointing to this independent and former Republican to know the Florida governor threw his hat in the presidential campaign ring. We need serious minded leaders who will help all citizens and focus on real issues not contrived wedge issues. What we don’t need are authoritarian bullies who pick on people who don’t agree with them.
What a great day for a walkabout. As I wander, here are a few thoughts I might take with me.
A general thought that I cannot seem to shake is it would be nice for legislators to focus on solving problems and getting something done, rather than grandstand.
To this purpose, it would be helpful if they took the time to study the issues we need to focus on and stop telling us what funders have paid them to do.
It is depressing how low the US Supreme Court has fallen. Not only has it become more political than before, it has added unethical behavior to the mix. Part of the reason is when the needed Senate votes dropped from 60 to 51 to approve someone. As a result, we have people on the court who are more strident in their views.
Stepping away from Washington, we have a more than the two most notorious governors in Florida and Texas who have decided leadership of all citizens is not what they are there for. They have also decided civil rights need not be evenly distributed or warranted. That is shameful in my view.
It would help if all of these folks noted above could spend a little more time with the truth and less time asking for and counting their money. We hear about the flood of people coming across the border, but the real crisis is we are purposefully bottlenecking folks from crossing. While the former president was awful as he created this mess, the current president has not followed through on improving the process.
Whether it is climate change, water, environment, debt, healthcare, et al, let’s focus on the truth and address these issues. And, stop exaggerating or contriving issues that are not that important, but designed to distract voters.
Now, that I have gotten that off my chest, I can finish my walk.
The following post was written over ten years ago, but remains a beacon. I cite the findings of Dr. Sandra Steingraber, who is one the most grounded scientists on the subject of what the environment does to us, especially our children. Her voice has been heard any several halls of governance and is worth heeding.
Earlier this week, I had the distinct pleasure to hear Dr. Sandra Steingraber speak on the significant environmental crisis that has been with us for some time and the impact past, current and future events will have on the environment and us in the future. I say pleasure, but in fact, she scared the crap out of me and everyone in attendance which was her purpose. Dr. Steingraber is an ecologist, author, cancer survivor* and mother of two. Her most recent book about her son is called “Raising Elijah – Protecting our Children in an Age of Environmental Crisis” and it follows her earlier book called “Living Downstream: An Ecologist’s Personal Investigation of Cancer.” She is a frequent public speaker and has testified in front of Congress, the United Nations and the European Parliament to name a few. Her first book has been made into a film by The People’s Picture Company of Toronto.
She tells her stories from each of her lenses, but her most impactful lens is the one told as a mother of two. I am currently reading “Raising Elijah” and would encourage each of you to read it and tell others about it. I will move onto her first book after this one. She attests that when you speak of these issues as a mother (or parent), it resonates with everyone as we all wish for our children to live healthy lives. She notes she has been able to bring pro-life and pro-choice believers together on these issues.
In her mind, there are two types of crises with the environment – the toxic crisis and the climate change crisis. The toxic crisis has been with us for some time and decisions and exposures from many years ago are still affecting people now. The climate change crisis is very real and, in addition, to the other issues it creates, it heightens the impact of the toxic crisis even more. Elevated temperatures and the impact on the ozone will only make current matters worse. From a mother’s perspective, the impact on our children is worse than it is on adults. She notes the obvious, but children are closer to the ground where many of the toxins reside, they have a much higher degree of mouth breathing meaning they will take in more air per pound, they put their hands in their mouth about ten times an hour plus they will be exposed for longer periods due to their age than adults to toxins. A few facts that will heighten the issue
– 1 out of 8 US children are born prematurely which is traceable to the environment; early births mean the lungs are not fully created, so life long breathing issues will result;
– 1 out of 11 US children have asthma (1 out of 4 in Harlem);
– 1 in 10 US children will have a learning disability;
– 1 in 110 US children will have some form of Autism; and
– 1 in 10 US white girls and 1 in 5 US black girls will have breast development before the age of 8, which translates into menopausal and other issues.
I wish to tell you these numbers are made up, but they are well-grounded. And, the higher propensity can be traced to toxins that have been allowed to exist in the air, water and even playgrounds. The latter will make you furious, but the pressurized wood we have in many of our playgrounds is loaded with arsenic, copper and chromium, so our children and adults with our pressurized decks, are exposed to these chemicals. Adding to that, it is measured that 60% of Americans live in areas where the air is unhealthful. So, from her perspective, “an investment in green energy is also an investment in cancer prevention.”
I went to hear her speak as she is one of the biggest opponents of hydro-fracturing or fracking to release and harvest natural gas. What I expected to hear is the impact fracking has on the nearby water where the chemicals used to fracture the shale gets in the water table. I also expected to hear about the significant increase in earthquakes in areas where fracking is done. These are a problem. Yet her major concern is what is released into the air and its impact on many today and in the future. Air pollution is what is causing the conditions in children and adults.
She notes the US is now doing and promoting Four Extreme Measure of Fossil Fuel Extraction – (1) mountain top removal, (2) tar sands, (3) deep-sea oil drilling and (4) fracking. All of these impact our environment greatly, but fracking gives her the most alarm. She advocates we must have a strategy to cease all new fossil fuel extraction now and invest in renewable forms of energy. Her point is any change will not impact the climate change for about 15 years, so we must divorce ourselves now from new fossil fuels.
What can we do? Reading from “Climate Change and Your Health – Rising Temperatures, Worsening Ozone Pollution,” by the Union of Concerned Scientists, we should be doing the following:
– investing in more fuel-efficient cars and reducing the miles driven;
– developing fuels that are less carbon-intensive;
– providing good public transit and other commuting/ travel alternatives;
– increasing energy efficiency at industrial and commercial facilities;
– developing and retrofitting homes and buildings to be more efficient;
– using more renewable energy resources – such as wind, solar and geothermal – to generate electricity;
– ensuring that ozone and carbon-reduction standards are strong enough to be truly protective of public health; and
– working collaboratively with global partners to reduce carbon emissions from other countries.
The issues and solutions require concerted effort and input from all parties. This issue more than any scares me most if the GOP takes the White House. I feel we will not only lose momentum, but many of the policies of the GOP are the exact opposite of what we need to do. When Newt Gingrich has to disavow that he changed his mind on global warming when he appeared with Nancy Pelosi (I guess we are to shake up our Etch-a-Sketch to erase it from our memories) that is a telling point for me. The President is on the right track, but he needs to do more and he needs the Republicans to join him at the table and stop being ostriches with their head in the sand. And, once you read Dr. Steingraber’s book I hope you have a better grasp that we need a concerted effort now to save our children – our Elijahs. Forget the debt, forget the economy, forget social values – none of that will matter if we don’t fix this problem. The human and economic cost will dwarf any of these issues.
*Note: Steingraber is a survivor of bladder cancer, which is called a bell weather cancer as it is often associated with environmental causes. She grew up between four different factories. Other relatives also got various cancers, including bladder cancer. Yet, here is the gist – Steingraber was adopted, so it was not a hereditary cause. Eventually, the cancer was linked to environmental toxins from the factories.
The following was written ten years ago. Since then, the US helped push and sign the Paris Climate Change Accord, decided to leave it under the last president, then decided to stay with the current president. As an independent and former Republican and Democrat voter, this difference in doing something about climate change is the primary reason (among several) to avoid voting for Republicans. Full stop. We have no more time to waste and need to fund and do bigger things to stave off what is already happening. Just look at some of the predictions referenced from 2013 below looking forward until today.
Today is a good day to reflect on what more we can do to protect our planet and make it a life-sustaining environment for eons to come. I would encourage you to spend a few minutes perusing my friend Z’s blog at www.playamart.wordpress.com and check out her Earth Day post of yesterday. She has captured in her photos and quotes a very meaningful journey on this Earth Day, as she often does with other topics of import. Below are a few odds and ends for your review as well.
It is all about water and air
These are our dearest resources. We must be vigilant on how we use and impact these resources. I have written recently about “water is the new oil.” We can not only avoid polluting our precious resource, we have to be very thoughtful about its overall supply. Do not let anyone tell you this is not a major issue.
On the air side, we must guard against the emissions that come from the mining, collection, use and disposal of fossils fuels and petro-chemicals. For those who want to protect our kids from future debt problems, this will impact their health and the debt in far greater way, with the high cost of fixing problems and tending to those impacted mentally and physically.
Some skeptics will see the word “mentally” and say that is overblown. Yet, one of the key tenets of Dr. Sandra Steingraber’s books “Living Downstream” and “Raising Elijah” is most environmental models look at the impact of pollution on a 50-year-old man. The models need to look at the impact on children who are of lesser weight, closer to the ground, mouth breathe more, put hand to mouth more, and have developing brains. The data are showing the impact of various chemical pollutants heightens the propensity to certain mental and physical challenges such as autism and its various manifestations, asthma and other breathing disorders and more premature births which creates a vicious cycle for future health issues. Her data is very compelling and her voice needs to be heard.
Global warming will accelerate many bad things
In her books, Dr. Steingraber, who is an ecologist, biologist, and bladder cancer survivor, also notes that a problem we do not talk enough about in the discussion of global warming is its impact on the toxins that are in our air, water and environment. She says it is like a chemical crockpot. As the earth warms, so will these toxins and our ability to reduce them will be challenged. She highlights her bladder cancer as a bellweather cancer, as it is typically caused by environmental issues. She had other relatives nearby who also had bladder cancer – the key is she was adopted, so it was environmental not hereditary.
We are already seeing worse things in the global warming models than forecasted, so as one of the US’s political parties is fiddling, Rome is burning. Last year at this time, I read a report that showed hurricanes will more significantly impact the coastal regions with the higher sea levels. The analogy used is it is easier to dunk a basketball when the court is raised. This was before Hurricane Sandy which many scientists note was heightened by the raised sea levels. In addition to lives, livelihoods, and homes, the cost to fix is at least the $50 billion the federal government provided in January.
The other predictions in the model are heightened forest fire prevalence and intensity, worsened droughts in the drier areas along with more stalled weather systems. So some areas get way too much precipitation, while others get way too little. The human and economic cost of these worsening conditions is huge says Mercer Investment Consulting and major pension trust sponsors around the globe. This study done in 2011 talked of these increasing forest fires, worsening droughts, and intensifying hurricanes, which had already been occurring and are now more prevalent around the globe.
Already too much carbon in the air
People like to talk about global warming as a future event, yet as noted above, it is already impacting our lives. We have too much carbon in the air today and it will only get worse. China is firing up more coal plants and Beijing is coming closer to being an inhabitable city. If you do not believe this, then ask why it is getting harder for companies to get their ex pats to move and stay there.
There are solutions in addition to moving more quickly away from fossil fuels. We need to adopt older ways of grazing cattle that will let the grasslands flourish. We need to plant even more trees than we are doing now and stop taking them down at such an accelerated rate. And, we need to move more food growth and distribution closer to the sale and consumption of food. The greener areas will absorb more carbon at of the atmosphere and coupled with more renewable energy sources, will move us down the right path.
And it is not just humans
Finally, our ability to survive on this planet is not just in human hands. We are seeing the impact of global warming and environmental toxins on animals, fish and insects that matter to us. The honey bee population continues to fall and the culprit is most likely the pesticides sprayed on adjacent crops. These bees cross-pollinate a non-inconsequential percentage of our food and farmers and beekeepers are worried.
Our coral reefs are dying off in greater numbers. The Great Barrier Reef outside of Australia is shrinking for example. This is of vital importance due to the numbers of fish and other species that swim and grow there. And, species we do not eat are eaten by species we do. So, it is a major concern. And, closer to home the populations of cod are much smaller in Cape Cod, so the fishermen have to go further out to sea. The US Fisheries Department has been tracking the impact of global warming on fish populations for over ten years, while the fiddlers still fiddle.
And, in the animal species, it is not just polar bears who are being impacted. The huge amount of fracking going on in our national parklands is impacting animals there. In Pennsylvania, small animals and birds are impacted by drinking the chemically laden water that cannot be kept out of the water supply. There is a domino effect that will impact us humans at some point, either directly, or through the animals, fish and insects we come in contact with.
Conserve and advocate
Now that I have scared the crap out of you, what can we do? Continue to conserve, compost and reuse. Do small things and big things. I wrote a post on last year’s Earth Day about conservation. But, also advocate. Change the conversation with others and leaders. Write them and be matter of fact. If someone starts a conversation about their doubts over global warming, say “that train has left the station, we need to talk about what to do about it.” If they insist, say “97% of scientists believe it to be so and only 26% of Republican Congresspeople. I choose to believe the 97% of scientists.” My advice is to not to debate the obvious, but discuss what to do about it. It will change the tenor of the conversation to be action-oriented.
And, that is precisely what is needed – action. We really do not have any time or resources to waste. Happy Earth Day.
*Note: Our friend Jill posted an old Earth Day post as well. Here is a link.
I wrote this post nine years ago. And, yet we have some elected officials who are still touting a fossil fuel funded PR campaign that denies or diminishes climate change. We have some Republicans who are purposefully focusing on things like wokeness, book language and themes, critical race theory rather than real threats right in front of us. It is telling that four leaders in the GOP are in Florida (former president, governor and two US senators) where the fact the state is surrounded on three sides by water, is under consistent hurricane threat and has the city with the most risk in the world to sea level rise seems not to matter as long as we pound on Disneyworld for trying to be open-minded.
The above quoted phrase is from an interview with former New Jersey Governor Christine Todd Whitman who was the keynote speaker at the Charlotte Chamber’s annual Energy Summit. Whitman also served as the administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under President George W. Bush. After her discussion which she promoted the use of nuclear power as a part of an all of the above strategy that must include more alternative energy, she was interviewed by Bruce Henderson of The Charlotte Observer. The questions below and responses are from this interview which was reported under the title “Ex-EPA chief Whitman promotes nuclear power” in the November 16, 2013 edition.
“Q. What’s your view of climate change?” A. Climate change is real. If you don’t think that, you haven’t been outside or read the newspaper or watched television for the last couple of years. We are getting more frequent, more severe storms and droughts and floods, all of that. But Earth’s climate has been changing since it was formed. We had an ice age. That went away and we weren’t around to screw that up. However, to think that what we’re putting into the atmosphere is not having an impact on climate change and Earth’s ability to regulate itself I think is being naive. The point is, the climate is changing, the sea level is rising, we’re losing the ice caps, and we need to prepare.
Q. How do you explain the conservative Republican response to climate change? A. The response is mindless. It is absolutely clear now – you can’t find a credible scientist who says that climate change isn’t occurring. You will find a difference as to what degree they believe the human impact is exacerbating a natural trend. It was Ronald Reagan who made climate change a regular part of the National Security Council agenda. (Republicans) should own environment anyway if you go back to the first public lands set aside, Abraham Lincoln and Yosemite, and then you have Teddy Roosevelt and Richard Nixon who established the EPA. It’s our issue. Its more a (current) reaction to, we don’t want government anywhere, anytime, anyhow that the hard-line libertarian streak is fueling.”
Since her purpose is to shake up her party, I will leave her words to resonate as is. As an Independent voter who left the Republican party in 2006, one reason being its stance on global warming, I find that her attempts to help the GOP join the conversation that is already occurring refreshing and long overdue. Bruce Henderson’s article can be found on www.charlotteobserver.com if interested in reading the full interview.
Just because someone wins an election does not make the person leader. The winners are in a position of leadership, not a leader when they choose not to lead.
A key failure is to forget an important lesson – the elected official is supposed to represent all people in the district, not just those who voted for the candidate. And, the winner should especially not kowtow to a vocal minority who makes more waves.
This more vocal group is of concern to me as with gerrymandered districts, they have more influence than they should. More strident people will vote in a primary and the folks who listen less to those voices, will suffer. And, when the elected official gets to office due to the gerrymandering, the winner will play too heavily to the vocal audience.
At times, I feel we are seeing a version of “The Hand Maid’s Tale” play out. We see too much influence from the strident few. So, we must ask more questions and, if they go unanswered, ask them again. We must demand leadership that we deserve where our real concerns are addressed and not blown off. We need leaders not people creating sound bites shouting at that wind.
In America, we have a gun governance problem, we have a water crisis, we have a climate change problem, we have a debt and deficit albatross, we have a threat to civil rights, and we have health care cost increase pressure among others. Let’s deal with those issues.
Labels. They are a lazy way to argue. If a politician or party can craft a label and paint it in a derogatory manner, it becomes a weapon. This is true even if folks can’t define what the label means, either the user or the listener.
One thing I have surmised is labelling politicians will see opinion entertainers like Carlson, Hannity, et al, cover a topic like wokeness, critical race theory, LGBTQ+ pervasiveness, etc. and weaponize a rebuttal, start deploying said weapon and then watch the opinion entertainers pick it up and run with it. It comes full circle and people will start believing their own BS.
To me, it is a lot like these legal TV networks looking for court cases to merchandise into viewers and money. If you ever wondered why certain cases get more intention, it is because they are hand-selected and sold as such. The court case miners are looking for “wedge” topics that will translate into viewers.
So, do yourself a favor. If you see a politician or opinion show host use a label, ask more questions. See if the labeler knows what it means. It may not be as bad as it is portrayed. Then ask questions about issues of import. Like why is a governor surrounded on three sides by ocean spending all of his time on labelling and not what he intends to do about the most at risk city to rising sea levels in the world – Miami.
I saw a MAGA fan of the former president holding up a sign that said “We need Trump.” My response is “really?” A person voted by over 150 presidential historians as in the bottom five as one of the worst presidents ever? I am sure this poll of historians does not make many far right’ news blips.
The rationale for such a low rating, per one of the historians who so voted, is on top of his policy decisions and making America’s standing in the world fall, his poor handling of the COVID pandemic and his role in the seditious insurrection against a branch of government pull him down. It is not a surprise that his sycophants are trying to re-write history on these two issues.
But, these two issues do not stand alone. Here are a few other things to chew on:
His one focus his first year was to take away people’s healthcare which would have harmed his constituents as well as other Americans. Thank goodness his efforts failed as a Republican led Congress could not come up with a suitable replacement or follow a better process to get there.
He decided to set aside a regulation that would require investment advisors to be fiduciaries, meaning they would be responsive to the needs of their customers first and foremost. In other words, this populist president sided with the investment sellers not the buyers. (Sidebar – investors should insist their advisors be fiduciaries).
He decided to place tariffs on goods and services from China and our allies, which caused rebuttal tariffs on US goods. History has shown tariffs are not very successful at their stated goals and the consumers are the ones who are punished (he consistently lied about the impact on consumers, as well). He also upset both supply and sales chains, causing buyers and sellers to take action.
He took credit for turning the economy around, but he inherited an economy that was in its 91st consecutive month of GDP growth, with 2 + million per annum job growth for six straight years, and a more than doubled stock market from his predecessor. It did continue on his watch, was made better by a sugar rush of a tax cut before waning and then going into recession with the pandemic.
He passed a tax cut that primarily benefitted the wealthy and corporations providing some breaks for lower paid workers but punishing the middle class with caps on state and local tax deductions. This not only increased the debt by about $2 trillion per the CBO, but it only gave us a brief increase in the economy for a brief time (like a sugar rush).
He pulled the US out of the Paris Climate Change Accord making us a significant outlier in the fight against global warming. Note, this change was made a day after Exxon shareholders voted to require management to advise them on what they are doing to fight climate change.
He elevated the exposure of far right, white nationalist groups allowing them to come out in the open. One of the worst things he said after Charlottesville is there are good people on both sides normalizing oppressive behavior.
Note five of the above examples of this populist president are harmful to the broader population, including those folks who are so enamored with him. This is keeping with what I have said for many years as a former Republican, that most Republicans are voting against their economic interests have no idea they are.
I will say I do agree that he made other NATO countries start coming to the table with the agreed upon funding. Yet, his manner in so doing is off-putting as it is in so many things. But, there is not much I support that this president put in motion. Yet, when you throw his actions leading up to, during and following the insurrection, coupled with his poor handling of the pandemic, his ranking in the bottom five is well-earned.
So, do we need Trump? Certainly not in the White House.