Opinion: Opinions | Trump’s scam is failing him, and he’s in a panic over it - PressFrom - US

OpinionOpinions | Trump’s scam is failing him, and he’s in a panic over it

18:15  19 august  2019
18:15  19 august  2019 Source:   washingtonpost.com

Police: Masked man making threat led to panic at Memorial City Mall

Police: Masked man making threat led to panic at Memorial City Mall Shoppers were sent running for safety at Memorial City Mall Sunday after police say someone in a mask jumped on a table in the food court and threatened to kill himself. © Provided by TEGNA Inc. Houston police at Memorial City Mall gave all-clear after panic It happened at around 3:15 p.m.  Police say the white male in his late teens or early 20s first went up an escalator, then came back down, put on the red mask and made the threat.  They say he also threw down a bag before taking off in the direction of nearby apartments.

Editor’s note: The opinions in this article are the author’s, as published by our content partner, and do not necessarily represent the views of MSN or Microsoft.

Opinions | Trump’s scam is failing him, and he’s in a panic over it© Patrick Semansky/AP (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

As President Trump prepares to run for reelection on the claim that his populist nationalist agenda has been a smashing success, it’s awfully telling that Trump and his advisers have now launched a frantic, multi-front effort to deny glaring truths about that agenda that are all right there in plain sight, for all of us to see.

A new report in the New York Times documents an emerging pattern: Trump is increasingly explaining away warning signs of a potential recession by resorting to lurid conspiracy theories. Trump claims the Federal Reserve is working against him. He also says the “Fake News Media” is fabricating recession fears — and exaggerating the damage of Trump’s trade war with China, a key driver of those fears — to cloud his reelection chances.

Police continue search for masked man who sparked panic inside Memorial City Mall

Police continue search for masked man who sparked panic inside Memorial City Mall The search continues Monday for a masked man accused of causing a panic inside the Memorial City Mall a day earlier. Houston police detectives are on the hunt for the man, described as a white male in his early 20s, who allegedly donned a mask, jumped on a food court table and shouted that he was going to kill himself around 3:30 p.m. He then threw an object to the ground, a series of events which sparked hysteria among hundreds if not thousands of shoppers inside the mall, police said. Two people, a mother and her 16-year-old son, were injured in the stampede for the exits, police said.

What we’re seeing here should be understood as panic. The Times reports this on Trump’s private ventings to advisers:

Mr. Trump has been agitated in discussions of the economy, and by the news media’s reporting of warnings of a possible recession. He has said forces that do not want him to win have been overstating the damage his trade war has caused, according to people who have spoken with him.

Meanwhile, the Associated Press reports that Trump privately worries the economy might hurt him next year, and that Trump’s advisers are urging him to dial down the trade war with China, fearing that it’s damaging the economic outlook.

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This isn’t Trump’s public posture at all. To explain away the harm from the trade war with China, Trump’s basic claim has been that China is bearing the full brunt of the damage.

Photo released of person of interest in scare at Memorial City Mall

Photo released of person of interest in scare at Memorial City Mall Houston Police have released an image of a person of interest wanted for questioning in the Memorial City Mall incident Sunday that caused panic among shoppers. 

For instance, Trump falsely says China pays his tariffs — supporting his narrative that he’s shaking down China for money it stole from us. His top trade adviser says the tariffs’ costs aren’t falling on Americans.

But studies show otherwise. And Trump himself implicitly conceded as much by delaying his latest tariffs out of fears of higher prices for U.S. consumers during Christmas season.

Meanwhile, Trump’s efforts to downplay the trade war’s carnage at home — which his advisers are also gamely echoing — are also undermined by the niggling fact that his own administration has secured billions and billions of dollars in aid to farmers harmed by China’s retaliations.

Dallas Men Sentenced In $27 Million Hearing Aid Scam

Dallas Men Sentenced In $27 Million Hearing Aid Scam DALLAS (1080 KRLD) - 69-year old Terry Anderson of Dallas is going to federal prison for eight years and his 38-year old son Rocky will join him for the first seven. The two men managed to cheat Blue Cross-Blue Shield of Texas out of $27 million in a hearing aid fraud scheme. The men submitted false medical claims for hearing aids for customers who didn't need or want them. Sometimes, they didn't get the aids. Most of those customers were American Airlines employees who were duped into getting a hearing test for a free set of sunglasses. The Andersons lived pretty well off that money.

More broadly, Trump has hand-waved away recession worries in a manner that’s unintentionally revealing. Asked Sunday about those fears, Trump said: “Our consumers are rich. I gave a tremendous tax cut, and they’re loaded up with money.”

This is remarkable. Trump’s economic agenda represents a fusion of populist and nationalist trade hostilities with a full-on embrace of conventional GOP plutocracy — huge attempted cuts to the safety net and a massive corporate tax cut that showered most of its benefits on the very top earners, completely betraying his campaign posture.

On both these fronts, Trump’s economic agenda has failed to deliver for workers. The tax cut didn’t produce its promised explosion of job-creating investments. As Paul Krugman notes, it produced a “sugar high” of stimulus, but growth has reverted to pre-stimulus rates.

And while it’s true that consumers are spending, the idea that Trump’s tax plan was primarily a “tremendous” tax cut for ordinary American consumers that left them “rich,” as Trump now claims, is laughable.

Bitcoin Drop Not Likely Triggered by Scam Dump, Researcher Says

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Meanwhile, the trade war wreckage continues to mount, damaging Trump’s own constituencies and, now, helping to threaten a possible recession.

Yet Trump is trying to minimize the mounting signs of failure in the one area where he actually attempted some form of economic populist nationalist agenda — albeit wrongheadedly — by pointing, in hilariously misleading fashion, to the area where he actually embraced plutocracy.

The failures of Trumponomics

In a good piece, economics writer Neil Irwin points out that the gathering threat of a recession is being driven in part by the fact that corporate investment is “softening” because Trump’s trade wars are feeding uncertainty about business decision making. Yet Trump’s tax cut was supposed to fuel that investment.

As Irwin points out, recessions can happen when a core assumption about our future is undermined. In this case, it’s the idea that the world will “become more stable and interconnected over time,” and that trade and diplomatic relationships “can be counted upon.” Trump is helping undermine that assumption, and a freezing up of business investment could be the emerging result.

Trump isn’t the only factor undermining that assumption. Others include the weakening of the Chinese and European economies (which also has something to do with Trump’s trade wars). And it’s certainly possible that our economy can contain this damage.

Man and son in Texas get prison in $27M hearing aid scam aimed at American Airlines workers

Man and son in Texas get prison in $27M hearing aid scam aimed at American Airlines workers A father and son in Texas who submitted more than $27 million in false claims in a hearing aid scam targeting American Airlines workers were sentenced Wednesday to federal prison, officials said. © Provided by Fox News Network LLCTerry Lynn Anderson, 69, was sentenced to eight years and ordered to pay $13.7 million in restitution to Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas. He was also ordered to forfeit his 300-acre ranch in Valley Hills, three vehicles and more than $3.1 million seized from nine bank accounts.

But the bottom line is that Trump’s “America First” nationalism is looming as an economically destructive factor to a far greater extent than Trump’s plutocratic tax cut is acting as an economic positive (though it did produce lots of stock buybacks).

The story Trump told was that he would end the selling out of workers by “elites,” by shaking down China and other countries, forcing them to revamp trade deals that were robbing workers blind. Meanwhile, his tax cut would put tons of cash in workers’ pockets and fuel an explosion of trickle-down investment.

But the former is threatening disaster. And the latter did a lot more for those hated elites than it has done for working people.

Trump is still telling that same story. It’s certainly possible that this story might work among just enough Rust Belt voters to drive an electoral college win amid an even bigger popular-vote loss this time. But it’s clear that Trump himself fears his story is at serious risk of failing him.

Read more:

Jennifer Rubin: Trump’s economic record is one big con

Catherine Rampell: Trump has a dream team for mismanaging a recession

Robert J. Samuelson: Trump is not a ‘great deal-maker.’ His trade issues with China make that obvious.

Fareed Zakaria: Trump’s trade war clearly isn’t working

Jennifer Rubin: Trump sinks the markets — and maybe his reelection chances

Marc A. Thiessen: Trump didn’t start this trade war. China did.

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