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Donald Trump – The New York Times

Latest Articles

How 100 top U.S. schools compare.

By JEREMY ASHKENAS, HAEYOUN PARK and ADAM PEARCE

On The Daily Show, Roy Wood Jr. discussed the black Trump supporter and former cult member who was enthusiastically cheering on camera during the rally.

By GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO

The more white voters care about being white, the more they like President Trump.

By THOMAS B. EDSALL

And guess who his favorite subject was in Phoenix?

By GAIL COLLINS

The president inexplicably finds it easier to condemn reporters than neo-Nazis and white supremacists.

By NICHOLAS KRISTOF

Experts say that Afghanistan is locked in a cycle of state collapse, and outside involvement may be making matters there worse.

By MAX FISHER and AMANDA TAUB

President Trump is preparing to give the Defense Department formal authority to dismiss transgender troops, a person familiar with the directive said.

By JULIE HIRSCHFELD DAVIS

The Energy Department report says the current grid is robust but suggests additional support for the ailing coal and nuclear industries.

The very Republican leaders in Congress whom Mr. Trump will need to pass legislation are the focus of much of his ire.

By THE EDITORIAL BOARD

Justice Bernd Zabel of Ontario faced a disciplinary panel because he arrived in his Hamilton courtroom wearing a red Make America Great Again ball cap.

By CATHERINE PORTER

As the presidents attacks on the media become more strident, worries rise that reporters are being put at risk of violence.

By JIM RUTENBERG

Furious with President Trumps reaction to the Charlottesville protests, four groups of rabbis denounced him in unusually pointed language

By ALEXANDER BURNS

Detested by some, admired by others, the former sheriff finds himself thrust into the political fray by the prospect of a Trump pardon.

By SIMON ROMERO

President Trump can often sound like two different people: One who speaks from a script and one who speaks off the cuff.

By CHRIS CIRILLO and MARK SCHEFFLER

This weeks newsletter: impressions of the United States after a recent visit, and readers comments on Australian banter.

By DAMIEN CAVE

President Trumps speech on Wednesday in Reno, Nev., was a day-and-night contrast to his performance on Tuesday in Phoenix, where he ignored his prepared remarks.

By MARK LANDLER

The presidents angry condemnation during a campaign-style rally heightened the fear that verbal attacks on the press could lead to physical attacks.

By DANIEL VICTOR

The visit by Prime Minister Najib Razak promises to bestow legitimacy on him and illustrates what critics say is the Trump administrations disregard for corruption.

By GARDINER HARRIS

Trumps business advisers took a moral stand. Why wont his evangelical advisers do the same?

By JIM WINKLER

In internal emails, Gerard Baker described the draft of an article about the presidents rally in Phoenix as commentary dressed up as news reporting.

By MICHAEL M. GRYNBAUM

How 100 top U.S. schools compare.

By JEREMY ASHKENAS, HAEYOUN PARK and ADAM PEARCE

On The Daily Show, Roy Wood Jr. discussed the black Trump supporter and former cult member who was enthusiastically cheering on camera during the rally.

By GIOVANNI RUSSONELLO

The more white voters care about being white, the more they like President Trump.

By THOMAS B. EDSALL

And guess who his favorite subject was in Phoenix?

By GAIL COLLINS

The president inexplicably finds it easier to condemn reporters than neo-Nazis and white supremacists.

By NICHOLAS KRISTOF

Experts say that Afghanistan is locked in a cycle of state collapse, and outside involvement may be making matters there worse.

By MAX FISHER and AMANDA TAUB

President Trump is preparing to give the Defense Department formal authority to dismiss transgender troops, a person familiar with the directive said.

By JULIE HIRSCHFELD DAVIS

The Energy Department report says the current grid is robust but suggests additional support for the ailing coal and nuclear industries.

The very Republican leaders in Congress whom Mr. Trump will need to pass legislation are the focus of much of his ire.

By THE EDITORIAL BOARD

Justice Bernd Zabel of Ontario faced a disciplinary panel because he arrived in his Hamilton courtroom wearing a red Make America Great Again ball cap.

By CATHERINE PORTER

As the presidents attacks on the media become more strident, worries rise that reporters are being put at risk of violence.

By JIM RUTENBERG

Furious with President Trumps reaction to the Charlottesville protests, four groups of rabbis denounced him in unusually pointed language

By ALEXANDER BURNS

Detested by some, admired by others, the former sheriff finds himself thrust into the political fray by the prospect of a Trump pardon.

By SIMON ROMERO

President Trump can often sound like two different people: One who speaks from a script and one who speaks off the cuff.

By CHRIS CIRILLO and MARK SCHEFFLER

This weeks newsletter: impressions of the United States after a recent visit, and readers comments on Australian banter.

By DAMIEN CAVE

President Trumps speech on Wednesday in Reno, Nev., was a day-and-night contrast to his performance on Tuesday in Phoenix, where he ignored his prepared remarks.

By MARK LANDLER

The presidents angry condemnation during a campaign-style rally heightened the fear that verbal attacks on the press could lead to physical attacks.

By DANIEL VICTOR

The visit by Prime Minister Najib Razak promises to bestow legitimacy on him and illustrates what critics say is the Trump administrations disregard for corruption.

By GARDINER HARRIS

Trumps business advisers took a moral stand. Why wont his evangelical advisers do the same?

By JIM WINKLER

In internal emails, Gerard Baker described the draft of an article about the presidents rally in Phoenix as commentary dressed up as news reporting.

By MICHAEL M. GRYNBAUM

Read the rest here:

Donald Trump – The New York Times

Donald J. Trump for President, Inc.

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Donald J. Trump for President, Inc.

Donald Trump: Latest News, Top Stories & Analysis – POLITICO

TRUMP’S SCHEDULE TODAY AUGUST 23

11:45 a.m.: President Donald Trump will depart Phoenix, Arizona, en route to Reno, Nevada.

1:25 p.m.: Trump will arrive in Reno.

2 p.m.: Trump will deliver remarks at the National Convention of the American Legion in Reno.

2:45 p.m.: Trump will sign the Veterans Appeals Improvement and Modernization Act in Reno.

3:25 p.m.: Trump will depart Reno en route to Washington, D.C.

8:15 p.m.: Trump will arrive at the White House.

Read more:

Donald Trump: Latest News, Top Stories & Analysis – POLITICO

Donald Trump’s 57 most outrageous quotes from his Arizona speech – CNN

I went through the transcript of Trump’s speech — all 77 minutes — and picked out his 57 most outrageous lines, in chronological order. They’re below.

1. “And just so you know from the Secret Service, there aren’t too many people outside protesting, OK. That I can tell you.”

2. “A lot of people in here, a lot of people pouring right now. They can get them in. Whatever you can do, fire marshals, we’ll appreciate it.”

So many people love me — it’s hard to fit them all in the building! But, try!

3. “You know I’d love it if the cameras could show this crowd, because it is rather incredible. It is incredible.”

For the record: The cameras always show the crowd. Have for months and years.

4. “We went to center stage almost from day one in the debates. We love those debates.”

The election ended 287 days ago, as of last night.

5. “Our movement is a movement built on love.”

6. “We all share the same home, the same dreams and the same hopes for a better future. A wound inflicted upon one member of our community is a wound inflicted upon us all.”

7. “I see all those red hats and white hats. It’s all happening very fast. It’s called: ‘Make America Great Again.'”

Trump conflates a call to unity and an end to divisiveness with supporting him. The country is coming together because lots of people at a campaign rally have “MAGA” hats on!

8. “Just like (the media doesn’t) want to report that I spoke out forcefully against hatred, bigotry and violence and strongly condemned the neo-Nazis, the White Supremacists, and the KKK.”

9. “So here is my first statement when I heard about Charlottesville — and I have a home in Charlottesville, a lot of people don’t know.”

Follow this logic: The media says I didn’t condemn the white supremacists and neo-Nazis in Charlottesville. I did — because I have a house there, which many people don’t know.

10. “So here’s what I said, really fast, here’s what I said on Saturday: ‘We’re closely following the terrible events unfolding in Charlottesville, Virginia’ — this is me speaking. ‘We condemn in the strongest, possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence.’ That’s me speaking on Saturday.”

This is what he actually said (italics/bolding mine): “We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence, on many sides. On many sides. It’s been going on for a long time in our country. Not Donald Trump, not Barack Obama. This has been going on for a long, long time.”

Which is not the same thing. At all.

11. “I think I can’t do much better, right?”

No, you could have done much, much better. Just ask your own party — the vast majority of which condemned your Charlottesville comments. Also, Trump is always doing great!

12. “I hope they’re showing how many people are in this room, but they won’t”

[narrator voice]: They were.

13. “I call them anarchists. Because, believe me, we have plenty of anarchists. They don’t want to talk about the anarchists.”

Believe me, I know anarchists. The best anarchists. Bigly.

14. “If you’re reading a story about somebody, you don’t know. You assume it’s honest, because it’s like the failing New York Times, which is like so bad. It’s so bad.”

I have no idea what Trump’s point is here. But MAN, the New York Times is failing, right?!?!?

15. “Or the Washington Post, which I call a lobbying tool for Amazon, OK, that’s a lobbying tool for Amazon.”

Amazon doesn’t own the Washington Post. Jeff Bezos does.

16. “Or CNN, which is so bad and so pathetic, and their ratings are going down.”

17. “I mean, CNN is really bad, but ABC this morning — I don’t watch it much, but I’m watching in the morning, and they have little George Stephanopoulos talking to Nikki Haley, right? Little George.”

A few things: 1. Trump watches TV constantly. 2. “Little George”: Trump as bully-in-chief.

18. “I didn’t say I love you because you’re black, or I love you because you’re white, or I love you because you’re from Japan, or you’re from China, or you’re from Kenya, or you’re from Scotland or Sweden. I love all the people of our country.”

19. “How about — how about all week they’re talking about the massive crowds that are going to be outside. Where are they? Well, it’s hot out. It is hot. I think it’s too warm.”

It was warm! (105 or so.) But, again, multiple media reports — including CNN’s — show that there were thousands of protesters.

20. “You know, they show up in the helmets and the black masks, and they’ve got clubs and they’ve got everything — Antifa!”

21. “Then I said, racism is evil. Do they report that I said that racism is evil?”

22. “Now they only choose, you know, like a half a sentence here or there and then they just go on this long rampage, or they put on these real lightweights all around a table that nobody ever heard of, and they all say what a bad guy I am.”

“Racism is evil — and those who cause violence in its name are criminals and thugs, including KKK, neo-Nazis, white supremacists, and other hate groups are repugnant to everything we hold dear as Americans,” Trump said in response to the attacks in Charlottesville, Virginia, over the weekend.

23. “But, I mean do you ever see anything — and then you wonder why CNN is doing relatively poorly in the ratings”

See #16.

24. “But with me, they wanted me to say it, and I said it. And I said it very clearly, but they refused to put it on.”

The issue was that Trump said — on Saturday, August 12, and then again on Tuesday, August 15 — that the violence and hate on display in Charlottesville was “on many sides” and then that “both sides” were responsible for it. And, the news media didn’t condemn Trump for that; it was his own party who did that.

25. “I hit him with neo-Nazi. I hit them with everything. I got the white supremacists, the neo-Nazi. I got them all in there, let’s say. KKK, we have KKK. I got them all.”

This is revealing in a way Trump doesn’t mean it to be. He views the naming of the KKK and the neo-Nazis who were responsible for this violence as a box-checking exercise. I said their names — so what’s the problem?! (Of course,Trump didn’t call out these groups in his initial statement on Saturday, which was the problem.)

26. “So then the last one, on Tuesday — Tuesday I did another one: ‘We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence. It has no place in America.’

27. “So that was my words.”

Over 2,000 of them in fact. All dedicated to rewriting what he actually said about Charlottesville.

28. “Now, you know, I was a good student. I always hear about the elite. You know, the elite. They’re elite? I went to better schools than they did. I was a better student than they were. I live in a bigger, more beautiful apartment, and I live in the White House, too, which is really great.”

29. “The words were perfect. They only take out anything they can think of, and for the most part, all they do is complain. But they don’t put on those words. And they don’t put on me saying those words.”

Trump is not sorry. Not ever. He has convinced himself that what he said initially about Charlottesville was “perfect.” And, I realize this may be getting repetitive, but the media reported every word Trump said about Charlottesville. Period. The end.

30. “And yes, by the way — and yes, by the way, they are trying to take away our history and our heritage. You see that.”

This is demagogic language from Trump about the media. “They” are trying to rob us of “our history and our heritage.” You don’t have to look very hard to see racial and ethnic coding in that language.

31. “I really think they don’t like our country. I really believe that.”

Trump’s claim that the media doesn’t “like” America is hugely offensive. Offensive and dangerous. Imagine ANY other president saying anything close to this — and what the reaction would be.

32. “Look back there, the live red lights. They’re turning those suckers off fast out there. They’re turning those lights off fast.”

33. “CNN does not want its falling viewership to watch what I’m saying tonight, I can tell you.”

See #16.

34. “If I don’t have social media, I probably would not be standing.”

Same.

35. “They’ll say, ‘Donald Trump is in a Twitter-storm.’ These are sick people.”

Your guess is as good as mine.

36. “You would think — you would think they’d want to make our country great again, and I honestly believe they don’t. I honestly believe it.” The media, in Trump’s telling, is rooting against the country. Let me say again: Rhetoric like this is offensive, dishonest and dangerous.

37. “The New York Times essentially apologized after I won the election, because their coverage was so bad, and it was so wrong, and they were losing so many subscribers that they practically apologized.”

38. “I must tell you, Fox has treated me fairly. Fox treated me fairly.”

39. “How good is Hannity? How good is Hannity? And he’s a great guy, and he’s an honest guy. And ‘Fox and Friends in the Morning’ is the best show, and it’s the absolute, most honest show, and it’s the show I watch.”

40. “Oh, those cameras are going off. Wow. That’s the one thing, they’re very nervous to have me on live television.”

41. “I’m a person that wants to tell the truth. I’m an honest person, and what I’m saying, you know is exactly right.”

42. “You’ve got people outside, but not very many.”

He is obsessed with crowd size. Obsessed.

43. “So, was Sheriff Joe convicted for doing his job?”

44. “He should have had a jury, but you know what? I’ll make a prediction. I think he’s going to be just fine, OK?”

The “pardon” tease! Make sure to stay tuned for next week’s episode!

45. “It was like 115 degrees. I’m out signing autographs for an hour. I was there. That was a hot day.”

It was hot. But I am still very popular. Extremely popular. Believe me.

(And for what it’s worth, CNN White House reporter Kevin Liptak emails: “It was 106 degrees and he spent no more than 25 minutes shaking hands.”)

46. “But believe me, if we have to close down our government, we’re building that wall.”

47. “‘Extreme vetting’ — I came up with that term.”

…he says proudly.

48. “And we have to speak to Mitch and we have to speak to everybody.”

49. “But, you know, they all said, Mr. President, your speech was so good last night, please, please, Mr. President don’t mention any names. So I won’t. I won’t. No I won’t vote — one vote away, I will not mention any names. Very presidential, isn’t’ it? Very presidential.”

This is Trump taking a shot at John McCain, who is currently battling brain cancer, for voting against the repeal and replace health care legislation. It’s also Trump showing how closely he reads press coverage and how he likes to openly flout suggestions of being more “presidential.”

50. “And nobody wants me to talk about your other senator, who’s weak on borders, weak on crime, so I won’t talk about him. Nobody wants me to talk about him. Nobody knows who the hell he is.”

Jeff Flake is a sitting Republican senator. Trump is running him down in his home state at a campaign rally less than a week removed from touting one of his primary challengers on Twitter.

51. “Did you see Gruber got fired yesterday? He got fired because he defrauded somebody or something. Something very bad happened. Check it out. Something happened.”

52. “One vote — speak to your senator, please. Speak to your senator.”

53. “I think we’ve gotten more than anybody, including Harry Truman, who was number one, but they will tell you we’ve got none.”

54. “But Kim Jong Un, I respect the fact that I believe he is starting to respect us. I respect that fact very much. Respect that fact.”

Respect. That. Fact.

55. “I don’t believe that any president has accomplished as much as this president in the first six or seven months. I really don’t believe it.” Trump believes that by saying things, he wills them into existence and truth.

He doesn’t.

56. “They’re trying to take away our culture. They are trying to take away our history.”

[dog whistle]

57. “So I think we’ll end up probably terminating NAFTA at some point, OK? Probably.” Way to throw a major policy pronouncement into the end of a speech while negotiations are ongoing!

Read the original here:

Donald Trump’s 57 most outrageous quotes from his Arizona speech – CNN

Why Donald Trump Likes To Surround Himself With Generals – NPR

President Trump speaks with newly sworn-in White House chief of staff John Kelly at the White House on July 31. Kelly is one of four former generals who were appointed to top administration positions. Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

President Trump speaks with newly sworn-in White House chief of staff John Kelly at the White House on July 31. Kelly is one of four former generals who were appointed to top administration positions.

When White House chief strategist Steve Bannon was pushed out of his job last week, it underscored the growing clout of President Trump’s chief of staff, John Kelly, a retired Marine Corps general.

And when Trump announced he was increasing U.S. troops in Afghanistan on Monday, after suggesting for years that he wouldn’t, administration officials were quick to note that he was heeding the advice of “the generals.”

Trump, who attended the New York Military Academy as a teenager, has made clear he admires the toughness and discipline of military life and has appointed four former generals to top administration positions.

“I think that he likes the idea of military leadership, because military leadership is very decisive and audacious at times, and general officers are very good at simplifying problems and then getting the job done,” said Thomas Kolditz, a retired brigadier general and the director of the Doerr Institute for New Leaders at Rice University.

While other administration figures have come and gone, Kelly, Defense Secretary James Mattis and national security adviser H.R. McMaster are still on the job, with varying degrees of power and influence. (A fourth general, Michael Flynn, held a brief, stormy tenure as national security adviser.)

But as much as Trump reveres the military, his own management style could put him in conflict with the very generals he has appointed.

Leadership is a core part of military service, and promising recruits are taught from the beginning how to inspire and command respect.

“The heart and soul of who we are in the military is about leadership, and leadership on a day-to-day basis but very importantly leadership in combat,” said retired Marine Corps Gen. John Allen.

“So recruiting young men and women who have those skills early in their lives and then working hard to foster and nurture those skills are very important,” he added.

Those qualities can make a big difference later on, when those men and women leave the military and venture into public life or the corporate world.

Former Procter & Gamble Chief Executive Robert McDonald attended West Point as a young man and later served five years in the Army, before leaving for a corporate job.

He had to make certain adjustments, he recalls. Because people in the Army move around so much, they’re provided with manuals telling them how to do everything.

“So when I got to the Procter & Gamble Co., I went to my boss and I said, ‘Where’s the field manual that tells you how to organize your desk?’ And of course they thought I was crazy,” McDonald said.

But the leadership skills he learned in the military stayed with him throughout his career. McDonald likes to cite some words from the West Point Cadet Prayer.

“Those words are, ‘Help me to choose the harder right rather than the easier wrong.’ And it’s remarkable, but in business as in life, the easier thing is usually the wrong thing to do,” he said.

Carola Frydman and Efraim Benmelech, professors of finance at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, have studied the track records of chief executives who served in the military.

Among their findings: CEOs who are also vets are more cautious about spending money on research and development, and they tend to commit less corporate fraud.

They also don’t tend to do any better than other chief executives, the research suggests.

But Frydman and Benmelech say CEOs who are also vets do tend to perform better during economic downturns. They can be good in a crisis.

“They bring the capacity to operate under stress, and in so many cases, this stress has been tempered in the hot flame of war. And you just can’t pay enough for that kind of experience,” Allen said.

That may be one of the qualities that appeal to Trump, whose administration has been plagued by leaks, aborted policy initiatives and high-level staff defections.

But Kolditz notes that Trump may not fully grasp the ethos of public service and loyalty to the country that military officers are brought up in.

“Donald Trump’s grown up in a scrappier place, where it was pretty much about making money for yourself, and he is brand new to public service,” Kolditz said.

“Many of the things that Donald Trump expects from his people require [their ideas about public service] to be set aside for personal loyalty to Donald Trump. And so we’re going to see this meeting of the minds, and I think it will be a process of consistent negotiation in how things happen,” Kolditz added.

“What he’s looking for is success,” Allen said. “And so in his mind it would seem he has concluded that among the many other people that might come into the administration, retired generals offer perhaps a time-tried and battle-proven executive who can come into the administration and provide critical leadership in key positions.

“And with Kelly, Mattis and McMaster, he has certainly found three of the best and he has placed them I think in three pretty critical positions,” Allen said.

See the original post here:

Why Donald Trump Likes To Surround Himself With Generals – NPR

Donald Trump, Afghanistan, Kyrie Irving: Your Wednesday Briefing … – New York Times

Photo Afghan National Army soldiers, left, and American soldiers blew up a Taliban firing position in Kandahar Province in 2013. Entering its 16th year, the war in Afghanistan is the longest in U.S. history. Credit Bryan Denton for The New York Times

(Want to get this briefing by email? Heres the sign-up.)

Good morning.

Heres what you need to know:

Trump blames media for divisions.

After a statesmanlike address on Monday about national unity, President Trump preached division at a raucous rally Tuesday night in Phoenix. (Watch video excerpts here.)

The president accused the news media of misrepresenting his condemnation of bigotry after the deadly clashes in Charlottesville, Va., and suggested that journalists were responsible for deepening divisions in the country. Outside, the police used tear gas to disperse thousands.

Mr. Trump also implied that he planned to pardon Joe Arpaio, a former sheriff in Arizona convicted over his roundups of undocumented immigrants.

I wont do it tonight because I dont want to cause any controversy, the president said. Ill make a prediction: I think hes going to be just fine.

{{= c_phrase }}

Inside the Trump-McConnell feud.

They havent spoken in weeks.

What was once an uneasy alliance between President Trump and Senator Mitch McConnell, the majority leader, has curdled into resentment and sometimes outright hostility. Mr. McConnell has privately expressed doubt that Mr. Trump can salvage his administration.

Congress faces a number of deadlines when it returns next month. That could be complicated by a president who has threatened Republican senators who cross him.

Sixteen years of war, in pictures.

Times photographers chronicled the arc of the war in Afghanistan, which has vexed three U.S. presidencies.

President Trumps speech on Monday outlining a plan for the conflict was met with a collective shrug by the Taliban and some Afghan officials, our correspondent in Kabul reports.

He said were going to win, but he didnt make it clear how were going to win, one member of the Afghan High Peace Council said.

Mr. Trumps address also met skepticism in Pakistan, whose main rival, India, the president praised. Our correspondents explain.

Navy removes fleet admiral.

Vice Adm. Joseph Aucoin, the head of the U.S. Navys largest overseas fleet, was relieved of duty today.

His fleet has experienced four collisions since January, two of which were fatal, adding to fears of a U.S. decline in Asia.

Swedish journalists death is confirmed.

A torso found this week in Copenhagen waters was that of Kim Wall, who disappeared after boarding a Danish inventors submarine, the police announced today.

The inventor, Peter Madsen, is being held on preliminary charges of involuntary manslaughter.

The police in Copenhagen said blood was found in the submarine designed by Peter Madsen. He told investigators that he had buried a missing journalist at sea after an accident on the vessel.

The Daily, your audio news report.

In todays show, we discuss the theory and history of nation-building in Afghanistan.

Listen on a computer, an iOS device or an Android device.

Google will start offering Walmart products on Google Express, the search companys online shopping mall, to compete with Amazon.

Apple had big ambitions for driverless cars. But it has scaled them back, focusing on a shuttle service for employees that will let it test technology.

The Village Voice, the left-leaning independent weekly New York City newspaper, will end its print publication after 62 years.

U.S. stocks were up on Tuesday. Heres a snapshot of global markets.

Tips, both new and old, for a more fulfilling life.

Worried about your eyes after the eclipse? Heres what you should know.

Your guide to dorm room essentials.

Recipe of the day: Embrace the meatless meal with roasted cauliflower and broccoli with salsa verde.

When permafrost isnt permanent.

In todays 360 video, travel to Alaska, where scientists are trying to determine how much greenhouse gas could be released if rising temperatures cause the permafrost to thaw.

Scientists in Alaska are drilling into the permafrost in an attempt to determine how much greenhouse gas could be released if rising temperatures cause the permafrost to thaw.

Partisan writing you shouldnt miss.

Writers from across the political spectrum discuss President Trumps strategy in Afghanistan.

A skewed portrait of a diverse city.

The number of racial and ethnic minorities serving on the boards of New York Citys cultural institutions remains strikingly low, according to data collected by The Times.

Mayor Bill de Blasio has given museums and arts groups an ultimatum: diversify or risk losing some city financing.

Sex, drugs and sustainable agriculture.

In a new book, Alice Waters, who helped start the farm-to-table movement, looks back at her wild early years.

Best of late-night TV.

The comedy hosts tried to make sense of the U.S. strategy in Afghanistan.

Quotation of the day.

I stand by my man both of them.

Elaine Chao, the transportation secretary, when asked about the feud between President Trump and her husband, the Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell.

They were a dissatisfied group of Americans, determined to break away.

Not Californians in 2017. Or Texans for decades. But on this day in 1784, settlers in western North Carolina declared an independent state. They were concerned that the local and national governments, which were in a debate over debts related to the Revolutionary War, did not have their best interests at heart.

The State of Franklin, in what is now eastern Tennessee, adopted a constitution with power divided among three branches, like the national government that its leaders hoped one day to join.

The state made treaties, levied taxes and set salaries, but not in currency. Instead, those salaries included 1,000 deer skins a year for the governor, 500 raccoon skins for the governors secretary and a single mink skin for the constable for each warrant signed, according to one account published in The Times in 1852.

Officials sought the help of Benjamin Franklin, but hopes of national recognition were never realized. The state only lasted a few years because of internal dissent and external pressure.

But it had an impact. The State of Franklin was eventually absorbed into Tennessee, and its leader, John Sevier, became Tennessees first governor when it joined the union in 1796.

Sarah Anderson contributed reporting.

_____

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Continued here:

Donald Trump, Afghanistan, Kyrie Irving: Your Wednesday Briefing … – New York Times

Hillary Clinton calls Donald Trump a ‘creep,’ says her ‘skin crawled’ during debate – Washington Post

Hillary Clinton’s new book, ‘What Happened,’ comes out Sept. 12, but audio excerpts were made public on Aug. 23. (Monica Akhtar/The Washington Post)

Hillary Clinton said her skin crawled as Donald Trump loomed behind her at a presidential debate in St. Louis, and added that she wished she could have pressed pause and asked America, Well, what would you do?

The words, Clintons most detailed public comments about what happened during one of the campaigns more memorable moments, are includedin her new book, What Happened, which she called an attempt to pull back the curtain on her losing bid for the presidency.

Some of the moments during the campaign, she said, baffled her. Others seemingly repulsed her: In recounting the October incident, she referred to Trump as acreep.

The book comes out Sept. 12, but audio excerpts, read by Clinton,were played Wednesday morning on MSNBCs Morning Joe.

In the recording, Clinton noted that she wrote about moments from the campaign that she wanted to remember forever as well as others she wished she could go back and do over.

The moment from the debate appeared to fall into the latter category.

This is not okay, I thought, Clinton said, reading from her book. It was the second presidential debate and Donald Trump was looming behind me. Two days before, the world heard him brag about groping women. Now we were on a small stage and no matter where I walked, he followed me closely, staring at me, making faces.

It was incredibly uncomfortable. He was literally breathing down my neck. My skin crawled. It was one of those moments where you wish you could hit pause and ask everyone watching, Well, what would you do? Do you stay calm, keep smiling and carry on as if he werent repeatedly invading your space? Or do you turn, look him in the eye and say loudly and clearly, Back up, you creep. Get away from me. I know you love to intimidate women, but you cant intimidate me, so back up.

The debate took place two days after Trump was heard bragging about groping, kissing and trying to have sex with women on theAccess Hollywood tape comments made in 2005 on an apparent hot mic.

Afterward, some Republican critics said Trump should drop out of the race. But he ended a video response to the years-old tapes release by saying: See you at the debate on Sunday.

Trumps actions during the debate were viewed as bullying even before the moment that Clinton recounted.

As The Posts Sarah L. Kaufman wrote, Trump paced and rocked and grimaced as spoke; he broke into her time by shouting over her. When she protested that she had not done the same to him, he shot back with all the finesse youd hear in a middle school gym: Thats cause you got nothin to say.

When it was his turn to speak, Trump got angry, pointed at her, swung his arms around with alarming force.

[What two body language experts saw at the second presidential debate]

His actions were widely mocked and criticized after the debate, and even featured in a Saturday Night Liveskitthat showed him zooming toward an unsuspecting Clinton.

If a man did that to me on the street Id call 911, political commentator and former Republican strategist Nicolle Wallace said, according to NBC News.

The New York Daily News headline the day after the debate read: Grab a seat, loser.

In the post-debate spin room, Clinton surrogates accused Trump of menacingly stalking the Democratic nominee. Two body language experts analyzed the debate and concluded Trump was trying to assert his power by roaming the stage while Clinton spoke.

Trumps constant pacing and restless movements around the stage attracted attention from Hillarys words, and visually disrespected her physical presence on the stage, as in I am big, you are small, David Givens, director of the Center for Nonverbal Studies, a nonprofit research center in Spokane, Wash., told The Post then.

Clinton said in the audio clip played on MSNBC that What Happened is not a comprehensive account of the 2016 race and that it was difficult to write.

Every day that I was a candidate for president, I knew that millions of people were counting on me, and I couldnt bear the idea of letting them down but I did, she said. I couldnt get the job done, and Ill have to live with that for the rest of my life.

Simon & Schuster, the books publisher, says What Happened is Clintons most personal memoir yet.

In the past, for reasons I try to explain, Ive often felt I had to be careful in public, like I was up on a wire without a net, she writes in the introduction.Now Im letting my guard down.

Immediately after the election, Clinton kept a low profile, though she was occasionally spotted hiking in the woods by her Chappaqua, N.Y., neighbors; SNL even poked fun at the hubbub surrounding her sylvan whereabouts in a sketch called The Hunt for Hil.

In recent months, Clinton has slowly reemerged in the public eye, making speeches and giving interviewsin which she addressed the historic election.

Its unclear how much Clinton was paid for writing What Happened.Simon & Schuster representatives did not immediately respond to questions sent by email early Wednesday.

The publisher never publicly disclosed how much Clinton received for her 2014 book, Hard Choices, though in 2000, Clinton reportedly was paid about $8 million in advance to write a memoir (eventually titled Living History) about her years as first lady, according to the New York Times.

Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump traded jabs at their second face-off in a contentious town-hall style debate on Oct. 9, in St. Louis, with moderators Anderson Cooper and Martha Raddatz. (The Washington Post)

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Hillary Clinton calls Donald Trump a ‘creep,’ says her ‘skin crawled’ during debate – Washington Post

Donald Trump Will Resign and It Will Happen ‘Suddenly,’ Predicts Keith Olbermann – Newsweek

The Donald Trump presidency will end with his resignation, and it will come suddenly, with little warning, according to political commentator Keith Olbermann. Speaking on the latest edition of his GQ series The Resistance on Tuesday, Olbermann, a former MSNBC host, said he believed that Trump would call it quits when special counsel Robert Muellers investigation into his campaigns links to Russia grow too close for comfort.

Related: Will Trump resign? Odds of Trump quitting before impeachment reach new high

For a while now, I have thought the Trump presidency would end suddenly, Olbermann said.

Keep up with this story and more by subscribing now

For weeks now I have been anticipating that Trumps last day in office will dawn like all the others, and then around dinnertime it will suddenly break that he is about to resign, he added after retelling a story about being told he might have to jump on a story of then-President Bill Clintons imminent resignation during the Monica Lewinsky scandal.I dont know if thats next Tuesday or next year, but I think whenever it is, that is what it will feel like.

In the video, Olbermann discussed a tweet fromCNBC political reporter John Harwood, in which he relayed a prediction from a Republican strategist that Trump would resign once Mueller closes in on him and the family. The source also suggested that, after stepping into Trumps shoes, Mike Pence would name Senator Marco Rubio as vice president.

It is not the first time in recent days that the idea of Trump becoming just the second president in United States history, after Richard Nixon, to resign has been floated. Last week, Tony Schwartz, who helped write Trumps famed 1987 book The Art of the Deal, said that Trump is going to resign and declare victory before Mueller and Congress leave him no choice. Schwartz added that he would be amazed if [Trump] survives till end of the year.

While not a prediction, former Vice President Al Gore, when asked in an interview to give Trump one piece of advice, said simply, Resign.

President Donald Trump gives the crowd a thumbs-up at a campaign rally in Phoenix, Arizona, August 22. Joshua Roberts/Reuters

Renewed discussion about Trumps viability as president emerged following his controversial blaming of both sides for violence at a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, earlier this month that led to the death of a counterprotester.

But it is the multiple investigations into his campaigns ties to Russia that many believe posethe greatest threat to Trumps presidency. Trump suggested last month that he could fire Muller if he begins to probe his familys finances, something the special counsel is reportedly doing regardless.

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Donald Trump Will Resign and It Will Happen ‘Suddenly,’ Predicts Keith Olbermann – Newsweek

Protesters Rally in Dozens of Cities to Call for Trump’s Impeachment – NBCNews.com

Protesters rally outside a Trump hotel to call for the impeachment of President Donald Trump in New York on Sunday. Bebeto Matthews / AP

“Every single thing that comes out of this president’s mouth, and every action he takes, is contrary to what I believe, and frankly I’ve had enough,” one of the protesters, Mark Ransdell,

DC Scarpelli, an actor and activist, described the protest’s goals this way to the station: “Resist loud, so loud that we won’t even hear the door slam when he’s dragged out of office.”

A similar scene played out 400 miles south, in Los Angeles, where thousands of demonstrators were joined by Rep. Brad Sherman, D-California,

“Every day, Democrats, Republicans, the entire world is shocked by the latest example of America’s amateur president,” Sherman said Sunday.

In New York City, protesters gathered outside a Trump hotel, where the now-familiar scene of dueling protests erupted in a shouting match, according to an Associated Press reporter.

In Philadelphia, there wasn’t a shouting match but, instead, a fight: Two anti-Trump protesters were arrested after a supporter of the president was attacked outside a downtown bar,

It wasn’t just the big cities that drew crowds, either.

From Davenport, Iowa, protesters marched across the Centennial Bridge to Schweibert Park in Rock Island, Illinois.

“It’s interesting that this is going on during the Fourth of July weekend, and I hope as we reflect on how great this country is we can also reflect on how important it is to put country over party,” Dan Morris, of the Illinois activist group Rock Island County Indivisible,

And in Amarillo, in the Texas Panhandle, a small march made its way through downtown to the local office of Republican U.S. Rep. Mac Thornberry,

The march ended in a “die-in” to express support for the “99% of Americans either victimized or exploited by the Trump Regime,” the organizers, the High Plains Circle of Non-Violence, said in a statement.

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Protesters Rally in Dozens of Cities to Call for Trump’s Impeachment – NBCNews.com

Why pro wrestling is the perfect metaphor for Donald Trump’s presidency – CNN

It’s in keeping with Trump’s broad theme of the media as “fake” and his more narrowly focused message of late that CNN is the worst of the bunch.

(Sidebar: I’m not going to post the tweet here because, well, advocating violence against reporters is not something I want to give attention to.)

In a statement, CNN called it a “sad day when the President of the United States encourages violence against reporters.”

“Clearly, Sarah Huckabee Sanders lied when she said the President had never done so,” CNN’s statement continued. “Instead of preparing for his overseas trip, his first meeting with Vladimir Putin, dealing with North Korea and working on his health care bill, he is instead involved in juvenile behavior far below the dignity of his office. We will keep doing our jobs. He should start doing his.”

The appearance was part of a short-lived “feud” between McMahon and Trump, which was billed as the “battle of the billionaires.” (In real life, the two men are very friendly. McMahon’s wife, Linda, is now a member of Trump’s Cabinet as the Small Business Administrator.)

How do I know this? Because I watched it live. Because I love pro wrestling — always have, always will.

And, because of my decades spent watching pro wrestling, I have long believed that one of the best ways to understand the Trump campaign and now the Trump presidency is through the lens of professional wrestling and, in particular, the Vince McMahon-era WWE.

Let me explain.

At the heart of pro wrestling sits this basic fact: It is fake. It is a scripted television show. Yes, it requires physical ability — no one who is not in excellent shape could perform some of the falls and bumps these wrestlers do daily. But it is, at heart, a soap opera. Scriptwriters plot character arcs and narrative building. The outcomes are known before the matches begin. The wrestlers are as much actors as they are athletes. (Look to the acting successes of Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and John Cena for proof of that fact.)

But, and this is the really important part, not everyone who is a fan of pro wrestling knows this. Lots and lots of people who go to the shows, who buy the t-shirts and who subscribe to the WWE Network believe that this is all real. That the feuds are real expressions of dislike between the wrestlers. That “Mr. McMahon” is an evil, money-grubbing CEO. That “Bray Wyatt” is some sort of mystical southern shaman rather than just Windham Rotunda, the son of longtime pro wrestler Mike Rotunda and the grandson of “Blackjack” Mulligan. (I warned you I am a wrestling mark.)

This basic divide between fake and real is what Trump capitalizes on, too.

Most people — particularly in the media — know this fact. But lots of other people, including many of Trump’s supporters, truly believe that he hates the media. That he is the fighter against “fake news” they have been waiting for their entire lives. They don’t get that Trump is playing a role, that he is doing a schtick because he knows there is political gain to be had there.

McMahon grasped early on that playing on peoples’ fears and anger was a ratings goldmine. Booing is a powerful thing. Uniting behind a common enemy has real resonance. That McMahon created cartoon villains — broad-brush sketches of what made people afraid or upset — was besides the point. That it worked was the whole point.

Trump traffics in this same sort of approach. He is a famed — by his own account — counter-puncher. He does better when there is something or someone to run against.

In the 2016 campaign, that was easy; he had “Crooked” Hillary. But, as president, Trump has struggled to find an enemy. The Republican-controlled Congress? Meh. The leaderless Democratic party? Not so much.

What he has turned to then is the media. And he has worked aggressively to paint journalists as not only biased and “fake” but also as a stand-in for the so-called “elites” Trump supporters detest. If Trump was running the WWE, he would create a wrestler who was a reporter. That character — call him Clark Can’t — would have gone to Harvard, would work for CNN or The New York Times, would wear glasses and would spend the time before each match lecturing the crowd about how they need to be more politically correct. (In truth, the character would likely be a huge success as a villain.)

There’s one crucial difference between what Vince McMahon does and what Donald Trump does, however. McMahon is the CEO of an entertainment company whose lone goal is to make money for that company. Donald Trump is the president of the United States, whose salary is paid by taxpayers and whose job is to represent a nation of 300 million people stateside and in the world community.

Pro wrestling is fake. Being president isn’t. Trump seems not to know or care about that distinction.

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Why pro wrestling is the perfect metaphor for Donald Trump’s presidency – CNN

Donald Trump, the most insecure man in America – Chicago Tribune

Here is a new strategy for the resistance: Bleed on em. On Thursday morning, President Donald Trump took to Twitter to attack MSNBC commentator Mika Brzezinski with insults so medieval they might have been funny had they not come from the presidents fingertips.

First Trump called Brzezinski low I.Q. Crazy Mika which in psychology is what we refer to as projection. There is nothing dumber, or more insane, than the commander in chief taking time out of his day to personally attack a TV host when he should be governing the country. It seems like Trump realizes this and is now calling others what he most fears about himself. But heck forget the tax returns! Show us that bell curve, baby! If we are going to talk about IQs, my moneys on Mika.

He next tried his well-worn I didnt want her she wanted me! approach to discrediting Brzezinski. After making her sound desperate for wanting to interview him (you know, as journalists are wont to do), Trump then dropped the line that has women across the country viewing their hemoglobin in a brand new way:

Thats right, ladies and gentlemen: Mika is dumb and shes ugly! If only she had asked Melania for the name of her doctor! Then he might have granted her the interview! And grabbed her by the crotch too. You know how he feels about beautiful women.

As long as they arent bleeding.

Thursday morning was not the first time Trump has expressed a deep fear of womens blood and tried to encourage others to join in. After Megyn Kelly proved to be a tough moderator during the first Republican debate, Trump said in an interview with CNN, She gets out and she starts asking me all sorts of ridiculous questions. You could see there was blood coming out of her eyes, blood coming out of her wherever.

Bleeding from the face, bleeding from the eyes, bleeding out of her wherever. It makes a gal want to send him a copy of The Red Tent, doesnt it?

But he would probably take that as bullying. As deputy press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders responded to the incident, according to The Hill: I dont think that the president has ever been someone who gets attacked and doesnt push back. This is a president who fights fire with fire and certainly will not be allowed to be bullied by liberal media and the liberal elites within the media.

Folks, its official. Donald Trump is the most insecure man in America.

And no, he cant sit with us.

Tribune Content Agency

Cassady Rosenblum is a writer and former teacher. She studies investigative reporting at the University of California at Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism.

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Donald Trump, the most insecure man in America – Chicago Tribune

Blasts NBC for Firing Greta – TMZ.com

Donald Trump’s obsession with cable news knows no bounds … he went on a Twitter rampage Saturday claiming Greta Van Susteren got fired because “she refused to go along w/ ‘Trump hate!'”

MSNBC parted ways with Greta 2 days ago — the network says it was mutual but insiders say Greta wasn’t resonating with the audience.

The cable network, which intensely dislikes the Prez and makes no bones about it, got in Trump’s cross hairs. Trump called out NBC honchos as “out of control bosses.”

He also went after his go-to … CNN, saying, “I am extremely pleased to see that @CNN has finally been exposed as #FakeNews and garbage journalism.”

And he took more shots at Joe and Mika … calling him “crazy” and her “dumb as a rock.”

It’s absolutely amazing … on a good day CNN and MSNBC score a couple million viewers … but Trump has put them in the center of his universe.

Amazing … and ridiculous.

Link:

Blasts NBC for Firing Greta – TMZ.com

Why Trump deserves a chance to govern – Washington Times

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

I have been politically active for over 25 years. I have been a part of political fundraising for many worthy politicians. I was a part of the inner circle as the wife of Robert Mosbacher, former secretary of Commerce for President George H.W. Bush. I know how things are supposed to work and I can tell when things are broken. So can Donald Trump, which is why we elected him.

President Donald Trump entered the White House promising to change the business-as-usual mentality that ruled Washington. He made clear on the campaign trail that he would not go along with doing things the way they had always been done. The American people spoke loudly with his election, telling the political world that they were unhappy with how government had been operating. They wanted an outsider to come in, shake up the system, and find new ways to get things done instead of living with endless political gridlock.

So they got their outsider. Yet from his first day in office, Mr. Trump has been criticized precisely for being an outsider and for doing things differently.

Who is to say that the way things have always been done is the right way? Obviously those who voted for Mr. Trump to make America great again didnt feel served by the status quo. Some in power may be intimidated by the change that the new president brings but those who elected him crave it.

If Donald Trumps standard of behavior gets the job done, perhaps that standard should become the new normal. It is time to reset protocol to something that will better serve the nation. We should redefine what is presidential to take account of results, as in the business world. A businessman defines a problem, finds a solution, and acts. Yes, the presidents decisive style of action doesnt always follow protocol, but it moves the ball.

So give change a chance. Conformity with the past will lead only to more stagnation. Instead of criticizing the businessman president who gets the job done, we should applaud him.

Mr. Trump hasnt been in office long, but he has made the most of his time. He has withdrawn from the Trans Pacific Partnership, as he promised. He has approved the Keystone XL pipeline, creating jobs, as he promised. He has taken our country out of the Paris Accords, as he promised. He is beefing up border security with a review of our immigration policies, as he promised and despite opposition in the lower courts, appears on the way to vindication before the Supreme Court. He is working with Congress to repeal and replace Obamacare, keeping at it despite setbacks, as he promised.

Mr. Trump came under fire for firing former FBI director James Comey, but as president, he had the authority to do it and for a businessman president it was the right thing to do. In the private sector, if youre unhappy with the way someone is acting, you fire the person. You dont ask Congress. You act.

If Mr. Trump were to follow the practices of the past, he would not have social media accounts anymore. But guess what: Twitter didnt exist in the past. Mr. Trump is a modern president. Social media is part of many citizens lives, so it is a part of President Trumps life. Mr. Trump refuses to give up his Twitter account, because it is his direct link to the American people. Traditional media doesnt like him, because traditional media doesnt work like that.

But the Trump way is working. Supporters are happy that he is challenging the way things have always been done. They feel closer to the presidency than ever before, because this president doesnt go through media consultants. He says it how he sees it unfiltered.

At the end of the day, if Mr. Trumps new way of doing things fails, Washington can always go back to doing things the way they have always been done. But first we owe it to our nations future to give Mr. Trump a chance.

Georgette Mosbacher is a commissioner at the U.S. Advisory Commission on Public Diplomacy.

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Why Trump deserves a chance to govern – Washington Times

Sam Zell Is Over the Tribune – The New Yorker

On a recent Wednesday afternoon, Sam Zell, the iconoclastic Chicago businessman, breezed into his New York City office, on Madison Avenue, fresh from a week of motorcycling through the Tuscan countryside. It was absolutely spectacular, he said. Ill tell you, the one thought that just kept going through my head all week long was, Im seventy-five years old. Im riding faster and better than I ever have in my life. He wore his usual outr uniform of pressed black jeans and black T-shirt, and was his typical jovial and provocative self. He was in town ostensibly to promote his new book, Am I Being Too Subtle? , a chatty memoir that is an homage both to his parentsJews who escaped Poland in 1939and to his own entrepreneurialism, which has helped him to accumulate a fortune estimated by Forbes to be five billion dollars.

Zell attributes his wealth to a prescription articulated by any number of successful business people: zigging when everyone else is zagging. Its a replicable formula, he says, and he has little patience for people who complain that it was somehow easier in the good old days, or that the moment for such opportunities has passed. (His earliest successes came from investing in real-estate assets that others shunned.) My message is, anybody can do it, he explained. Theyve got to be focussed. Theyve got to be driven. Theyve got to have a tin ear to conventional wisdom. Theyve got to think outside of the box. He refuses to listen when hes told he cant do something. I spent my whole life listening to people explain to me that I dont get it, he says. I look at the Forbes 400 list, and if I eliminate the people who inherited the money, everybody else went left when conventional wisdom said to go right. How did I do what I did? By not listening to anybody else.

It was this singular thinking, in part, that led to Zells biggest financial miscalculation: the December, 2007, acquisition of the Tribune Company, for $8.2 billion. At that time, Tribune was a venerable but troubled collection of newspapers, including the Chicago Tribune , the Los Angeles Times , and Newsday ; the superstation WGN America; the Food Network; twenty-three local and regional television stations; and the Chicago Cubs. (He quickly sold off Newsday and the Cubs.) He knew that the newspaper industry was struggling and in serious disarray. Thats why the deal he structured to buy the company was classic Zell: awfully clever, perhaps too clever. He borrowed billions of dollars ($11.5 billion, to be precise, bringing the total amount of debt on the company to fourteen billion dollars) and risked just enough of his own money, through Equity Group Investments, his investment firmthree hundred and fifteen million dollars, about six per cent of his net worthso that he could lose it without feeling too much pain.

Zell took the company private, alongside the Tribunes employees, through an employee-stock-ownership plan, or ESOP , which resulted in both tax benefits and the employees becoming his equity partners. He promised them that if the deal succeeded, they would get rich (and Zell would get richer). After the deal closed, he says he went around the company and met every person who worked for Tribune. I looked up each one of them and I said, Guys, if this doesn’t work, its not going to change my lifestyle. But if this does work, its going to change yours. So climb onboard.

He also insulted them. He referred to Washington bureau reporters as overhead , and his suggestions to put ads on the front pages of the newspapers also offended them. In Zells telling, the employees were simply not wise enough to follow his lead. Im talking about survival, and theyre talking about journalistic arrogance, he said. I rest my case.

Ann Marie Lipinski, who resigned as the Chicago Tribunes editor in 2008, after sweeping staff cutbacks were carried out, flatly dismissed Zells version of events. Im sure thats a comforting narrative for him, but its rubbish, Lipinski, who is now the curator of the Neiman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard, wrote in an e-mail. The idea that employees opposing innovative ad placement were what brought the company to its knees demonstrates some real revisionist history.

Zell made other mistakes. Randy Michaels, the former radio executive he chose to run the Tribunes media properties (Michaels ran Jacor, a successful radio company that Zell bought out of bankruptcy in 1993), set a frat-house tone, and, as David Carr wrote in the Times , his and his executives use of sexual innuendo, poisonous workplace banter and profane invective shocked and offended people throughout the company. He also underestimated how quickly the companys revenues were declining, and within a year, the company had filed for bankruptcy, undone by a toxic combination of too much debt, plunging ad revenue, a general disruption confronting print media, and, to a lesser extent, the Great Recession. Needless to say, Tribune employees did not get rich.

Some blame Zell for being the architect of a leveraged buyout comprised of roughly ninety-eight per cent debt and two per cent equity. A virtually no-money-down L.B.O., said David Rosner, an attorney for a Tribune creditor, at a December, 2009, bankruptcy court hearing. In April of 2007, Tribune agreed to undertakeand the funding banks and, now, the hedge funds as successors, they agreedthey funded this massive amount of debt to permit Mr. Zell to acquire control of Tribune. That is the L.B.O. that drove this company into bankruptcy. Zell said, of the Tribune experience, I made a bet. I thought the bet was reasonable. I underwrote it appropriately. I was wrong. He lost his entire investment.

Though the fate of the Tribune newspapers got the most attention during the Zell years, it was the other properities, especially the TV stations, that interested him as a businessman, as Connie Bruck wrote in the magazine , in 2007. In part because of the failure of Zells leadership at Tribune and the debt he piled on it, those stations will now likely be used to form a conservative nationwide television rival to Fox News.

After emerging from bankruptcy after four years, and owned by its creditors, Tribune split itself into two piecesthe absurdly named Tronc, short for Tribune Online Content, its publicly traded newspaper groupand Tribune Media, its growing collection of local television stations. In May, Sinclair Broadcasting, which already owns a hundred and seventy-three television stations around the country, agreed to buy Tribune Media, with its forty-two stations, for $3.9 billion. Regulators are still evaluating the deal, but it now appears it will be completed. Sinclair has a reputation for its conservative bent in many markets and recently hired as its chief political analyst Boris Epshteyn, who served as an often contentious spokesman for Trumps Presidential campaign and then briefly as a White House adviser. (In his new gig, Ephsteyn recently criticized CNN, saying that it “along with other cable news networks, is struggling to stick to the facts and to be impartial in covering politics in general and this president specifically.)

As a bottom-line-oriented dealmaker, Zell is indifferent to the fate of the Tribunes television stations. It’s all predictable because effectively, they no longer had scale and they no longer had an owner, he said. Then, it becomes a financial transaction. But by this point in our conversation, he had had enough talk of the Tribune deal.

Unlike many other Wall Street types, hes not particularly worried about Donald Trump, though he is hardly a fan. Zell did not give money to Trump during the Presidential campaign (he declined to say whom he supported or voted for) but said that he finds Trump to be far preferable to Hillary Clinton.

He repeated what has become almost a clich: that the lites on the coasts completely missed Trumps appeal. I live in the Midwest, said Zell, whose primary home is in Chicago. You do not understand how angry the people in the middle of the country were. Angry is the best description. That may be an understatement. Their anger was directed at Washington politicians and regulators who tell people what they can and cant do. When youre a farmer, or youre a landowner, and you got a puddle on your ground, and last week it was a puddle and now it’s navigable waters, thats pretty serious shit, he said. I think thats the major problem of the Democratic Party, is exactly that stretch.

Zell said that Trumps Electoral College victory was about the people in the heartland sending a powerful message: We count. Youve been running this country for the benefit of urban lites. (He concedes that he, too, is an urban lite, but he also appreciates the wisdom of the message.) He said he thinks the East Coast and West Coast liberals are still in denial. They cant believe he got elected, he said. They cant believe what he does. Zell can. I dont think Trump is the disaster that the New Yorkers would like to portray him as, he said. But hes given up watching CNN because of what he sees as its anti-Trump bias. I dont like listening to Fox, either, he said, because its so biased.

The sale of the Tribune television stations to Sinclair wont make Zells dilemma about where to get his unbiased news any easier. And, in fact, it may exacerbate the growing schism between progressives and conservatives, further hardening already stark divisions. Thats a problem that Zell the businessman may choose to be matter-of-fact about, but not one that Zell, the son of clever and lucky immigrants, can afford to ignore.

Original post:

Sam Zell Is Over the Tribune – The New Yorker

President Trump’s Latest Health Care Push Could Repeal Obamacare and Do Nothing Else – TIME

(WASHINGTON) President Donald Trump is making a weekend push to get a Republican Senate bill to repeal and replace former President Barack Obama’s health care law “across the finish line,” Trump’s top legislative aide said Sunday, maintaining that a repeal-only option also remained in play if Republicans can’t reach agreement.

Marc Short, the White House’s legislative director, said Trump was making calls to wavering senators and insisted they were “getting close” on passing a bill.

But Short said Trump continues to believe that repeal-only legislation should also be considered after raising the possibility last Friday. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., has dismissed that suggestion and said he intended to proceed with legislation being negotiated over the July 4 recess.

“We hope when we come back, the week after recess, we’ll have a vote,” Short said. But he added: “If the replacement part is too difficult for Republicans to get together, then let’s go back and take care of the first step of repeal.”

Trump on Friday tweeted the suggestion of repealing the Obama-era law right away and then replacing it later, an approach that GOP leaders and the president himself considered but dismissed months ago as impractical and politically unwise. But the tweet came amid continuing signs of GOP disagreement among moderates and conservatives over the bill. Republicans hold a 52-48 majority in the Senate. Just three GOP defections would doom the legislation, because Democrats are united in opposition.

Republicans returned to their home districts late last week, bracing for a flood of phone calls, emails and television advertising from both conservative and liberal groups aimed at pressuring senators. Sen. Bill Cassidy held a town hall meeting last Friday to talk about flood recovery in Baton Rouge, Louisiana’s capital city, but audience members angry over the GOP health care bill at times chanted over Cassidy’s answers and criticized the secretive legislative process.

“I wish we weren’t doing it one party,” Cassidy said Sunday, adding he remains undecided on how he will vote.

Trump’s suggestion had the potential to harden divisions within the GOP as conservatives complain that McConnell’s bill does not go far enough in repealing Obama’s health care law while moderates criticize it as overly harsh in kicking people off insurance rolls, shrinking the Medicaid safety net and increasing premiums for older Americans.

“It’s not easy making America great again, is it?” McConnell said late Friday. He has previously indicated that if Republicans fail to reach agreement, he will have to negotiate with Democrats, who want to fix Obama’s health care law without repealing it.

Short said the White House remained hopeful after Senate Republicans submitted two versions of the bill to the Congressional Budget Office for scoring over the weeklong recess. Texas’ Sen. Ted Cruz is pushing a conservative version that aims to aggressively reduce costs by giving states greater flexibility to create separate higher-risk pools. The other seeks to bolster health care subsidies for lower-income people, perhaps by preserving a tax boost on high earners.

Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price said negotiations over the Senate bill were focusing on ways to address the issue of Medicaid coverage so that “nobody falls through the cracks,” combating the opioid crisis, as well as giving families more choice in selecting their insurance plan.

“We think that Leader McConnell and his senators within the Senate are working to try to get this piece of legislation on track,” Price said.

But conservative Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., said he didn’t think a repeal-and-replace bill could win 50 votes. Both he and Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb., have been urging McConnell to consider a repeal-only bill first.

“I don’t think we’re getting anywhere with the bill we have. We’re at an impasse,” Paul said. He criticized Senate leaders, saying they were seeking to win over moderates with multibillion dollar proposals to combat the opioid epidemic and boost tax subsidies to help lower-income people get coverage.

“The bill is just being lit up like a Christmas tree full of billion-dollar ornaments, and it’s not repeal,” Paul said. “I think you can get 52 Republicans for clean repeal.”

Even before Trump was inaugurated in January, Republicans had debated and ultimately discarded the idea of repealing the overhaul before replacing it, concluding that both must happen simultaneously. Doing otherwise would invite accusations that Republicans were simply tossing people off coverage and roil insurance markets by raising the question of whether, when and how Congress might replace Obama’s law once it was gone.

But at least nine GOP senators expressed opposition after a CBO analysis last week found that McConnell’s draft bill would result in 22 million people losing insurance over the next decade, only 1 million fewer than under the House-passed legislation that Trump privately told senators was “mean.”

Paul said he believes that Senate Republicans can do a repeal-only bill concurrently with a bill “they can call ‘replace.'”

Sasse said he would like to see a bill that would repeal Obamacare “with a delay.”

“If we can do a combined repeal and replace over the next week, that’s great,” Sasse said. “If we can’t, though, then there’s no reason to walk away.”

“I would want a delay, so that we could get straight to work. And then I think the president should call on the Senate to cancel our August” recess, Sasse said.

Short and Paul appeared on “Fox News Sunday,” Price and Cassidy were on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” and Sasse spoke on CNN’s “State of the Union.”

View original post here:

President Trump’s Latest Health Care Push Could Repeal Obamacare and Do Nothing Else – TIME

Did Donald Trump Invent a Chemical Attack in Syria? – Mother Jones

Kevin DrumJul. 1, 2017 10:21 PM

Ford Williams/U.S. Navy via ZUMA

A reader emails to ask why I havent written about Seymour Hershs story from last week that accuses Donald Trump of ignoring evidence that Syrias chemical attack in April wasnt actually a chemical attack at all. Its worth an answer.

First off, theres some background. Hershs main outlet was the New Yorker until a few years ago. But they refused to publish his 2013 article making the same accusation against the Obama administration, so the London Review of Books published it instead. But the LRB declined to publish his latest one, so it ended up in a German newspaper. Thats two well-respected publications that have parted ways with Hersh. Why?

Second, Hershs latest piece is almost completely single-sourced to a senior advisor to the American intelligence community. Thats mighty vague. And boy, does this advisor know a lot. He seems to have an almost photographic recall of every meeting and every decision point that preceded Trumps cruise missile attack. Its hardly credible that a civilian advisor could be as plugged in as this guy apparently is.

These things dont inspire confidence. So now lets take a look at the piece he wrote. Heres an excerpt:

Some American military and intelligence officials were especially distressed by the presidents determination to ignore the evidence. None of this makes any sense, one officer told colleagues upon learning of the decision to bomb. We KNOW that there was no chemical attack the Russians are furious. Claiming we have the real intel and know the truth I guess it didnt matter whether we elected Clinton or Trump.

And now heres an excerpt from his 2013 piece:

The same official said there was immense frustration inside the military and intelligence bureaucracy: The guys are throwing their hands in the air and saying, How can we help this guy Obama when he and his cronies in the White House make up the intelligence as they go along?

This is way too similar. In fact, the whole 2017 piece reads like a warmed-over version of his 2013 article. I just dont trust it.

Plus theres this: the Trump administration is one of the leakiest in memory. If Trump flatly ignored the advice of every one of his military advisorswhich is what Hersh saysits hard to believe that this wouldnt also have leaked to one of the legion of national security reporters in DC, who have demonstrated that theyre pretty sourced up. But so far, no one has even remotely corroborated Hershs story.

Is this because the mainstream media is afraid to report this stuff? Please. Theyd see Pulitzers dancing before their eyes. Theres not a reporter in the entire city who wouldnt go after this story.

You never know. Maybe Hersh will turn out to be right. Its certainly a compelling and detailed story he tells. But for now, I dont believe it.

Mother Jones is a nonprofit, and stories like this are made possible by readers like you. Donate or subscribe to help fund independent journalism.

See original here:

Did Donald Trump Invent a Chemical Attack in Syria? – Mother Jones

‘What Are They Trying to Hide?’ President Trump Questions 25 States Refusing to Hand Over Voter Information – TIME

More states are pushing back against President Donald Trump’s Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity.

As of Friday, 25 states have refused to give partial or full requested information, according to the Washington Post . Some states cited state laws prohibiting them from releasing certain voter information, while others opposed the information request due to the commission itself, the Post reported.

Trump tweeted about the subject Saturday morning writing, “Numerous states are refusing to give information to the very distinguished VOTER FRAUD PANEL. What are they trying to hide?”

Trump’s commission on voter fraud asked each state to provide personal data on all registered voters going back to 2006.

California, New York and Virginia were the first states to balk at the request. Mississippi’s Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann gained attention for his statement on refusing to provide the information.

“They can go jump in the Gulf of Mexico and Mississippi is a great state to launch from,” Hosemann, a Republican, said Friday. “Mississippi residents should celebrate Independence Day and our state’s right to protect the privacy of our citizens by conducting our own electoral processes.”

Read the original here:

‘What Are They Trying to Hide?’ President Trump Questions 25 States Refusing to Hand Over Voter Information – TIME

Donald Trump just went bull-in-a-china-shop on health care – CNN

That’s why Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, after insisting that the vote had to happen before the July 4 recess, postponed the vote earlier this week. The votes weren’t there — or even close to there.

McConnell has spent the 72 hours since announcing the unscheduled delay trying to craft a series of tweaks that would simultaneously win support from conservatives who think the bill doesn’t go far enough to repeal Obamacare and centrists who worry the bill leaves too many people uninsured. This is delicate and painstaking work, trying to find the exact right balance to lose only two Republican senators and pass the bill while dealing with the very real possibility that no such “right balance” exists.”

Here’s how to think about what Trump’s tweet does to McConnell and his ongoing negotiations: You and a big group of friends (9 or so) are going out to dinner. They are picky people. You’ve finally narrowed down your restaurant choices to two. Then, just as you are on the verge of deciding, some other dude you only sort of know comes in and says “Have you guys thought of this other place we could eat?”

It would be a giant pain in the butt right? (I have been in this situation before. It’s the worst.) Well, that’s what Trump just did.

Now, even as McConnell tries to button-hole his Republican colleagues to make hard political choices, there’s an escape hatch offered by the president. And, when you have options you really don’t like, anything else sounds great.

In short: It’s not a good situation for Mitch McConnell. But Donald Trump just made it even tougher.

The rest is here:

Donald Trump just went bull-in-a-china-shop on health care – CNN


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