2017 has been quite a year.
As it comes to a close, I thought it would be worthwhile to see how far we have come under the leadership of President Donald J. Trump as opposed to the ever-deepening abyss which we ended up in after 8 years of poor stewardship under Former President Barack Hussein Obama.
FoxNews.com reports that
President Trump spent his first year in office moving swiftly to roll back what his Democratic predecessor did in eight.
The result: the steady unraveling of a slew of regulations and laws put in place under then-President Barack Obama, covering everything from the Internet to the environment to health care.
Read on for a 2017 overview of what Trump has done to dismantle Obama’s regulatory legacy.
As a presidential candidate, Trump regularly promised to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act – keeping in line with other Republicans. Efforts to completely overhaul the 2010 law through Congress have thus far been unsuccessful. But piece by piece, Trump has managed to dismantle some controversial Obama-era initiatives.
- Individual mandate: Trump and Republicans used the sweeping tax reform bill passed just before Christmas to repeal a major portion of ObamaCare. The tax legislation eliminates in 2019 the penalty fee levied on Americans who do not purchase health care.
- Contraceptive mandate: The Trump administration announced in October that it would roll back an ObamaCare mandate that required employers to provide health insurance that included certain contraceptives, such as birth control, Plan B, intrauterine devices and sterilization procedures. The White House’s decision granted further protections to nonprofit groups, higher education institutions and non-publicly traded companies that had objections to the mandate.
- Cost-sharing reduction payments: Trump also announced in October the end to certain health care cost-sharing subsidy payments to insurers. These payments were special subsidies paid by the federal government that, in part, alleviated copays and deductibles for people with lower incomes who purchased insurance through the marketplace.
- Insurance alternatives: Through an executive order, Trump paved the way to provide “alternatives” to health insurance by instructing the Department of Labor to expand access to “association health plans.” The order allows for some consumers to purchase insurance across state lines.
One of Trump’s biggest issues, including when he was a presidential candidate, is immigration and border security. His 2017 policy changes reflect that.
- DACA: The Trump administration announced in September that it was phasing out the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, giving Congress only a few months to come up with – and pass – immigration reform legislation. White House officials and lawmakers are working on a deal that is expected to be revealed in January.
- Sanctuary cities crackdown: The Trump administration has vowed to crack down on “sanctuary cities” – places that limit how much local law enforcement officers cooperate with federal immigration authorities. Trump signed an executive order in January that, in part, would strip federal grant money to these cities. So far, a federal judge has blocked the withholding of funds from sanctuary cities.
The rollback of environmental regulations is meant to foster more development and punt certain land decisions back to states, the Trump administration has said.
- Clean Power Plan: The Trump administration is moving toward replacing the Obama-era Clean Power Plan. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt announced in October the administration’s intention to roll back the plan in an effort to ease regulations on coal-fired power plants. According to the EPA, the move will foster new developments of energy resources in the U.S. and reduce regulations that have curbed this kind of development.
- Paris Climate Accord: In August, the Trump administration formally told the United Nations that the U.S. plans to pull out of the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement – although that did not start the official withdrawal proceedings. The State Department said that it cannot begin to officially withdraw from the agreement until November 2019.
- Pipelines: At the beginning of his presidency, Trump signed executive orders that revived the controversial Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines.
- Cutbacks to federal lands: Trump in December signed executive orders that scaled back two of Utah’s national monuments – Bears Ears and the Grand Staircase-Escalante. The move was heralded by the Trump administration as a nod to states’ rights, though environmentalists criticized the decision.
When it comes to trade deals, Trump promised to “put America first.”
- Trans-Pacific Partnership: Immediately after taking office, Trump signed an executive order to withdraw the U.S. from the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal. Trade ministers announced in November an agreement on pushing ahead with the free-trade deal, according to the Associated Press.
Betsy DeVos might be Trump’s most controversial Cabinet secretary, and she’s hit the ground running in her position.
- Campus sexual assault guidelines: DeVos rescinded in September the Obama-era guidelines for colleges on how to deal with campus sexual assault investigations. In its place are temporary guidelines that she said will “treat all students fairly.” DeVos and other Republicans had been critical of the Obama administration’s approach to the campus sexual assault epidemic as they said the system denied the due process rights of those accused.
- Transgender bathroom guidelines: The Trump administration revoked federal guidelines that allowed public school students to use restrooms and other facilities that corresponded with their gender identity. The Obama-era guidelines were rescinded in February.
The Federal Communications Commission voted along party lines to dismantle Obama-era Internet regulations in December. Led by Ajit Pai, the Trump-appointed FCC chair, the commission moved to repeal net neutrality regulations imposed on Internet service providers (ISPs) that prevented them from favoring their own services or certain customers over those of their competitors.
Critics argued that repealing these regulations could mean consumers would start paying more for Internet services as ISPs could begin to “bundle” services – such as certain websites or applications – and charge more based on what a person wants access to. But proponents pointed out that ISPs will still have to adhere to many other regulations and argued that this move will foster more competition that will ultimately drive down prices.
When it comes to foreign policy, Trump’s opinions on other nations and leaders aren’t secret. Just take a look at his Twitter account to see how he feels about North Korea’s Kim Jong Un any given week. But he’s moved to enact key policy changes as well.
- Iran Deal: Trump announced in October that he planned to decertify the controversial Iran nuclear deal, leaving the future of the agreement up to Congress. The decertification does not mean that the U.S. has automatically pulled out of the agreement, but Trump did leave the door open to that possibility in the future.
- Cuba travel restrictions: The Trump administration partially curtailed the newfound freedom Americans had in traveling to Cuba. Obama restored diplomatic relations with the Caribbean country in 2015, but the Trump administration rolled back what businesses Americans can visit in the country.
Criminal justice and police
While running for president, Trump promised to be a “law and order” president.
- Criminal charging policy: Attorney General Jeff Sessions overturned a directive from the previous administration that encouraged prosecutors to avoid charging certain drug offenders in a way that would leave them facing long, mandatory minimum sentences. Sessions revoked the directive in May and instructed his prosecutors to “charge and pursue the most serious, readily provable offense.” The move angered civil rights groups.
- Military equipment for police: In August, the Trump administration revived a federal program curtailed by Obama that allows for local police departments to receive surplus military equipment. Critics have long decried the “militarization” of police in America; Obama largely ended the program following concerns that armored vehicles and other military surplus gear could contribute to tensions between police and civilians.
So, what DID the 44th President of the United States of America, Barack Hussein Obama,(mm mmm mmm) accomplish?
A while back, I wrote a blog describing what I would do, if “I Were a Socialist U.S. President”. I added to it, as things further spiraled out of control during the Obama Administration.
In my humble opinion, it feels great to be able to look back on Obama’s “accomplishments” with the knowledge that Americans showed the world on November 8th, 2016 that we had had enough of Obama’s type of “leadership” and now, as detailed in the article above, to realize how far we have come as a nation in just one year under an actual American President.
**In respectful honor and memory of the late, great Paul Harvey, an American Original, (September 4, 1918 – February 28, 2009
If I were a Socialist United States President…
I would begin to plant seeds during my Inaugural Address, concerning the disparity between the Haves and the Have-nots. In other words, I would intentionally begin to divide the nation through the use of Racial Animus and Class Warfare.
Also, during that address I would push for a National Healthcare System, regardless of the fact that such a monstrous entity has never worked, anywhere it has been tried.
I would preach about hope and change, but like all Marxists, I would be hoping to bring subjugation and looking to “radically change” a nation, all in the name of “Fairness and Equality”.
The first thing I would do, when I took office, would be to send money around the world, to finance abortions. In this way, I would show the world that there is a new boss in the United States, who wants to radically change the Shining City on a Hill into just another country.
Next, I would push for the passage of an outrageous spending bill that would actually be a cover for paying back political favors.
I would invite the already-sycophantic Main Stream Media to come to the White House for closed-door meetings, where I would tell them to “get with the program”, if they wanted to receive any news stories from this White House at all.
I would make speeches about how marvelous a Government-run National Healthcare System would be, making hollow promises like,
If you like your insurance, you can keep your insurance. if you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor.
…all the while knowing that I was lying my hindquarters off.
Once I got my slaves in the Congress to pass this nation-changing National Healthcare Law, I would put the pedal to the metal and continuously push for other outrageous and expensive programs designed to grow the central government.
I would convince Americans that growing the central government is the only solution to a rapidly failing economy and that being unemployed and unable to provide for your family is actually a “fun-cation”.
And, while Americans were suffering through this Economic Depression, I would rant and rave about “Income Inequality”, while my family and I would take frequent vacations, costing the taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars, and throw lavish private parties at the White House, in a manner reminiscent of the old Soviet Union’s Politburo.
Realizing that the Heartland of America was still Conservative in nature, I would reach out to those Americans who believe themselves to be a mistreated minority. I would reach out to those on the fringes of society. Those Americans, who because of poor upbringing, poor education, or simply making bad decisions concerning their lives, now consider themselves deprived of the American Dream.
These people would compose about 47 percent of the population. They would be my core supporters, much like Nikolai Lenin and the Bolsheviks.
Having done a miserable job in my First Term as President, I would promise these Bolsheviks that if reelected, I would be their Santa Claus.
And, I would continue to blame my predecessor for the wretched state of the economy, even though, by now, it would be my responsibility.
Once I was reelected, there would be no stopping me. It would not matter to me what the popularity polls said, I would continue to claim that those who provide Americans with jobs were “the evil 1%” and identify their success in creating the Greatest Economic System in the World, as the “real reason” for the Economic Depression that America was in.
I would change the Moderate political stances which I “supposedly” held during the campaign for my first election as President, and show my true colors, following a political path pursuant to my true Far Left Radical Political Ideology.
Reverting back to the one job in my life that I was good at, that of being a “Community Organizer”, I would encourage an “Us Vs. Them” Racial Division in America, supporting out-of-control rioters over those who protect the Citizens of the United States, the Thin Blue Line, America’s Police Departments, because then, I could use the situation to create my own National Police Force.
I would alienate Conservative Christians living in America’s Heartland by vilifying them as “Bitter Clingers”, marginalizing them throughout my presidency, even to the point of lecturing them in my Easter Address, telling them to get off their “high horse”, basically saying that the followers of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, are no better than the murderous followers of Mohammed, whose Ideological Brethren continue to murder Christians in the Middle East.
I would push for “gay marriage”, demonizing Bible-believing Christians, who might oppose it as “bigots” and “haters” and I would voice my support for the legalization of marijuana.
Through redefining the definition of the family unit, and eliminating Christianity from everyday American Life, I will eliminate the “backbone” of the nation…the two main barriers that will keep me from radically changing America into a socialist nation.
Through pushing for the legalization of marijuana, I would succeed in dumbing down the population and eliminating their desire to succeed as individuals, making them even more subservient and reliant on the Almighty State for their very existence, thus creating a new “Proletariat”.
Regarding Foreign Policy, I would bow in deference to other world leaders, demonstrating to them and the rest of the world, that I do not believe that the United States of America, whom I am supposed to be the Biggest Advocate for, is exceptional in any way.
I would not negotiate with America’s Enemies from a position of strength. Instead, I would blindly trust those who have sworn to kill us, even if they are on the threshold of building a nuclear bomb, simply because I identify with their Political Ideology, which masquerades as a religion.
I would pull out of still turbulent areas in the Middle East, encouraging the Barbaric Forces of Radical Islam to move in and conquer the very cities where our Brightest and Best sacrificed their lives in service to America.
On the 70th Anniversary of D-Day, I would sit at a solemn International Memorial Service, smacking my gum like a cow chews his cud, as if I was behind the bench at a Chicago Bulls Basketball Game, dishonoring our fallen and enraging our allies.
In other words, I would embrace America’s Enemies, and alienate America’s Friends.
I would use the finest military in the world as a subject for Social Engineering Experiments, ending “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” and moving women into combat positions, even though their lack of physical strength would endanger the American Soldiers they are fighting beside.
Following this, I would eventually allowing the “Transgendered” to serve in our Armed Forces.
I would remove God from the Armed Forces and forbid soldiers from speaking about Christ to others. I would also begin Military Training which would identify Evangelicals as “Terrorists”.
While I am at it, I would push for my wife to be able to place the military on a diet plan that is similar to the one which would already be failing in America’s Public Schools.
I would trade 5 Murderous Muslim Terrorist Generals, for one useless, traitorous, American Army Deserter, who was discharged in 2006 from the Coast Guard for Psychological Issues, who later converted to the Religious/Political Ideology of his Captors, and whose Father’s Youtube Account praised the same Radical Muslims and their Political Ideology which poses as a religion, just because I wish to make a Political Point about closing the prison in which the enemies of our country were being held.
I would use the Judicial System, The Department of Justice, the NSA, and Internal Revenue Service as my Palace Guard, using Activist judges to overturn the will of the people and harassing political opposition through uncalled-for Tax Audits.
I would use unmanned drones and blimps for unwarranted surveillance on American Citizens.
I would push for Gun Confiscation, calling it “Gun Control”, in the “name of the children”, all the while supporting the murder of the unborn in their mothers’ wombs, because having a baby is “a punishment”.
Because, after all, as Vladimir Lenin said,
One man with a gun can control 100 without one.
I would imperiously announce that if Congress did not pass the laws that I wanted them to pass, I would go around them and rule by Executive Order.
I would open our Southern Borders, bypassing our immigration laws, encouraging millions of illegal aliens to enter our nation, including unaccompanied minors, spurred on by propaganda intentionally leaked to their Latin American Home Nations in support of this Mexican Munchkin Migration.
All the while, pushing Congress for “Immigration Reform”, i.e., “Amnesty”, in order to assure that my Political Party would hold onto their Political Power, in order to finish the intentional “Radical Change” of the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave.
And, if Congress refused to follow my wishes, I would attempt to grant Amnesty through “Executive Order”, bypassing the System of Checks and Balances that America’s Founding Fathers put into place, so long ago, in order to avoid a monarchy, such as they rebelled against.
Finally, if I were a Socialist U.S. President, I would blame others for my incompetency. I would portray myself as a victim of a Capitalist System and a Racist Ideology that was still prevalent in a nation that was too narrow-minded to allow me to lead them to a Socialist Paradise, even though my wife and I were worth millions or dollars, I was the President of the United States of America, and we took numerous vacations and went on “fact-finding missions” at the expense of the American Taxpayers.
Of course, that could never happen HERE, could it?
Norman Mattoon Thomas (1884-1968) was a six-time Presidential Candidate representing the Socialist Party of America. In a campaign interview in 1948, he said the following:
The American people will never knowingly adopt Socialism. But under the name of ‘liberalism’ they will adopt every fragment of the Socialist program, until one day America will be a Socialist nation, without knowing how it happened.
Mr. Thomas was almost right.
However, he underestimated the American People.
Until He Comes,