The Border Wall or Fence

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1 hour ago, Ten oz said:

we are exactly where we were before this started.

Not quite.

We have shown that Trump backs down when confronted.

No great shock; it's the standard tactic for dealing with bullies.

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6 minutes ago, John Cuthber said:

Not quite.

We have shown that Trump backs down when confronted.

No great shock; it's the standard tactic for dealing with bullies.

Maybe. More and more I don't think this has anything to do with the wall. I think this is all about keeping the House pre-occupied so they can't do anything else. Trump's pull out of Syria, Session's resignation, healthcare, and any number of other issues are being ignored to an extent while this Wall fight continues. It is a massive distraction. I am glad Democrats held strong but I don't really consider this a win for Democrats.

Trump thus far has led via tweet. He has posted a demand then sat around antagonizing Congress while Republicans (who had been in power) scuttled around trying to convert his tweets into policy. That has all changed. Now that Democrats have the House Trump will need to propose real policies which is something he has not done yet and honestly probably has no idea how to do. For now fighting over his Wall is the best course of action for Trump till he thinks something else up.

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Recently Trump demanded his "wall" again, and said the $5.7 Billion was an "installment." His definition of "wall" is something beautiful to behold. A nice, tall, strong, see-thru "wall" of steel slats. And IT is not there already. What is there now is called a "scrap metal fence." Trump declared the current "scrap metal fence" is actually 95% effective. What's so bad about 95% effective?! Just extend that 95% effective scrap metal fence. How much will that cost? Later he said the scrap metal fence is "not doing the trick." Which means it should be 99% effective like his steel slats. The scrap metal fence is not beautiful enough. When inspecting the border-wall samples near San Diego, Trump noted how the scrap metal fence is cut thru and repaired leaving scars that Trump remarked "doesn't look so good" in his mob-boss tone of voice. This means he wants to tear down the ugly scrap metal fence and replace it with big, tall, beautiful, strong, powerful steel slats, and put his name on it in big letters. That is a project costing$50 to $100 Billion and the$5.7 Billion is only for starters.

One third of Americans are with Trump 100%, even if he quits talking about his "wall."  Doesn't matter what he does for them, even if he shoots someone on 5th Avenue.  One third of Americans actually like his brash behavior.  In one third of American households that kind of behavior is considered masculine and therefore CUTE!!  One third of Americans LIKE his antics.

My brother voted for Trump.  He is a Rush Limbaugh fan and for 8 years complained about Obama.  "Obama wants to be a dictator."  "I hope they trash Obamacare!"  Etc.  Now he is silent about Trump and we don't talk politics.  When I asked him if he thinks Trump is obnoxious, he replied "no."  I am amazed that my dear brother doesn't think Trump is obnoxious.....and to me he is the definition of obnoxious.  To me his is forever an 8-year-old boy who acts like the tough guys he sees in movies, puffing his lips out, thinking it looks tough.  Nobody told him it looks weird, contorting his lips in an exaggerated manner as if to make sure lip readers can follow him, locked in his delusion thinking he is smarter than he really is.

Edited by Airbrush

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2 minutes ago, Ten oz said:

For now fighting over his Wall is the best course of action for Trump till he thinks something else up.

The dems realized the best thing to do was nothing. Not concede to a failed election promise, not fund a white elephant and moreover, not give in to a bully.

This one's on Trump.

To go through this again expecting a different result is not only ridiculous, it's counterproductive and detrimental on pretty much every level. Chaotic.

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3 minutes ago, Ten oz said:

Maybe. More and more I don't think this has anything to do with the wall. I think this is all about keeping the House pre-occupied so they can't do anything else. Trump's pull out of Syria, Session's resignation, healthcare, and any number of other issues are being ignored to an extent while this Wall fight continues. It is a massive distraction. I am glad Democrats held strong but I don't really consider this a win for Democrats.

Trump thus far has led via tweet. He has posted a demand then sat around antagonizing Congress while Republicans (who had been in power) scuttled around trying to convert his tweets into policy. That has all changed. Now that Democrats have the House Trump will need to propose real policies which is something he has not done yet and honestly probably has no idea how to do. For now fighting over his Wall is the best course of action for Trump till he thinks something else up.

1

I think you give Trump more credit than he's worth.

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I'm sure what ever policy Trump comes up with, will be as absurd as the last one.

1 minute ago, dimreepr said:

I think you give Trump more credit than he's worth.

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14 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

I think you give Trump more credit than he's worth.

Not really. He is all about attention and the moment. The longer he stays in this moment the longer he keeps all the attention. It isn't a complicated plan.

13 minutes ago, rangerx said:

I'm sure what ever policy Trump comes up with, will be as absurd as the last one.

Think of it is like a boxing match. Holding doesn't win a fighter any points. Actually holding loses a fighter points. However holding can prevent a fighter from getting knocked out and is an important tactic to utilize when hurt.

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3 minutes ago, Ten oz said:

Not really. He is all about attention and the moment The longer he stays in this moment the longer he keeps all the attention. It isn't a complicated plan.

Indeed...

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38 minutes ago, rangerx said:

To go through this again expecting a different result is not only ridiculous, it's counterproductive and detrimental on pretty much every level. Chaotic.

Yep.

So I expect Trump to do it again.

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50 minutes ago, John Cuthber said:

Yep.

So I expect Trump to do it again.

Right, saying Trump won't do it again because it would be bad is like saying a baby won't spit food up because it would make a mess.

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Even Trump will see that this is a non-starter. He will not want to be embarrassed again.

Air-traffic controllers (or other critical fed employees) will likely not hesitate a whole month to have a sick-out the next time (maybe Chicago gets the ATC flu next time, or Atlanta), supported by strikes in the private sector. The WH has to know this.

If the shutdown had worked, it would potentially be a tactic to use over and over. Well, the people affected by it found some leverage. Expect them to use it when needed. Also expect the GOP to try and remove that leverage somehow, or perhaps retaliate in some way, if they can get away with it.

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I found this an interesting read.

Quote

"The president’s promised hiring surge steadily lost ground even as he publicly hammered away at the need for stiffer border security, warned of a looming migrant invasion and shut down parts of the government for five weeks over his demands for \$5.7 billion from Congress for a border wall.

The Border Patrol gained a total of 120 agents in 2018, the first net gain in five years.

But the agency has come nowhere close to adding more than 2,700 agents annually, the rate that Kevin McAleenan, commissioner of Customs and Border Protection, has said is necessary to meet Trump’s mandated 26,370 border agents by the end of 2021."

"Beyond that, given historically low illegal immigration on the southern border, even the Homeland Security inspector general has questioned the need for the surge." Link

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Growing up in Australia - where a "shutdown" has only happened once in 1975. It resulted in a "double dissolution" election - where both houses of government are dissolved and a full election is held for every parliamentary seat.

I wonder how often the US government would block appropriations if it meant that every senator and congressman would have to face an immediate re-election.

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15 minutes ago, Arete said:

wonder﻿ how often ﻿the US government would block appropriations if it meant that every senator and congressman would ﻿﻿have to face an immediate re-election.

My guess is they never would. They would never even tease it.

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Might be a good law, but they would never pass it.  Unless maybe it was slated to take effect in 2060 or something.

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1 minute ago, Nod2003 said:

Might be a good law, but they would never pass it.  Unless maybe it was slated to take effect in 2060 or something.

If it only force elections for the Congress and not the President it wouldn't be a good idea. It would give the President way too much leverage.

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I’m sure they could put in a loophole to not include bills which were passed but vetoed by the president.

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6 minutes ago, Nod2003 said:

I’m sure they could put in a loophole to not include bills which were passed but vetoed by the president.

Here in the U.S. the President's veto ability is what causes shutdowns. Congress has always been able to pass something.

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Ah, thought that was just this latest time.

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Perhaps here's a little light in the not-too-distant future:

Quote

U.S. Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell said on Tuesday he would support bipartisan legislation to make government shutdowns more difficult as federal agencies returned to work after a partial shutdown that spanned more than a month.

“I’m certainly open to it,” McConnell told reporters. -  Reuters

Quite telling that a Republican leader has said this.

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37 minutes ago, StringJunky said:

Quite﻿ telling that a Republican leader has﻿ said this.﻿

Maybe but let's not forget the Senate also unanimously voted to support the bill which ultimately ended the shutdown prior to the shutdown occuring to begin with. Ultimately what Republicans will or won't support will depend on Trump. Nothing any other Republicans says currently matters.

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1 minute ago, Ten oz said:

Maybe but let's not forget the Senate also unanimously voted to support the bill which ultimately ended the shutdown prior to the shutdown occuring to begin with. Ultimately what Republicans will or won't support will depend on Trump. Nothing any other Republicans says currently matters.

I took it as a signal against Trump since it he who was the problem in this scenario.

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5 hours ago, Ten oz said:

Maybe but let's not forget the Senate also unanimously voted to support the bill which ultimately ended the shutdown prior to the shutdown occuring to begin with. Ultimately what Republicans will or won't support will depend on Trump. Nothing any other Republicans says currently matters.

Sorry I forgot to mention that in the 1975 Australian constitutional crisis, the sitting prime minister - Gough Whitlam was dismissed by the governor general who installed Malcolm Fraser - formerly the leader of the opposition as caretaker prime minister.

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11 hours ago, StringJunky said:

I took it as a signal against Trump since it he who was the problem in this scenario.

The problem is that this whole situation is currently being negotiated in bad faith. Trump already asked for and received the budget increases to hire 15,000 new Border Patrol agents 2yrs ago. Despite massive spending increases and a mandate from Trump for more Agent there has only been a net gain of 128 individuals which is only a tiny fraction of what they need to meet mandates they have already been budgeted for.

Quote

"In March 2017, McAleenan said Customs and Border Protection normally loses about 1,380 agents a year as agents retire, quit for better-paying jobs or move. Just filling that hole each year has strained resources.

Beyond that, given historically low illegal immigration on the southern border, even the Homeland Security inspector general has questioned the need for the surge."

"Today, Customs and Border Protection — the Border Patrol’s parent agency — has more than 3,000 job vacancies, according to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office.

That’s about 2,000 more than when Trump signed the orders, according to a Government Accountability Office report on CBP’s hiring challenges.

Border Patrol staffing remains below the 21,360 agents mandated by Congress in 2016, which is itself 5,000 less than Trump’s order, according to the latest available data."

So the very Agency Trump and Republicans are trying to Gin up more money for can't even use the money they have already been give and per their own admission don't need due to historically low immigration levels. If this debate were actually about border protection and being handled in good faith an obvious point of discussion would be how to reach the staffing mandates already in place using the extra money already allocated.

This whole thing is all smoke and mirrors. I understand that in a polarized political landscape everyone on both sides accuses the other-side of dishonestly so one natural assumes the truth must be somewhere between but in this case, with this President, we are literally dealing with a complete work fiction. Trump has no plan for a 5.7 billion wall, Border Patrol already received money they don't need and aren't using, and immigration levels are historically low.

There is no logical deal for Senate Republicans and Democrats to reach. Any deal they reach is just window dressing Trump either approves or disapproves of.

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On 1/28/2019 at 1:53 PM, Ten oz said:

Here in the U.S. the President's veto ability is what causes shutdowns. Congress has always been able to pass something.

Congress and the presidency are co-equal branches of government. If either branch fails to pass appropriations, the government shuts down. You can't automatically place the blame on the president, just because they have veto power. You could just as easily place the blame on congress if they did not pass a reasonable bill, or if they did not have enough support to override a veto.

Of course right now we have (and have had) leaders in congress who won't even bring proposals up for a vote (with indications that they would pass), so we don't even get to the stage of veto, and possible veto override. So you could assign blame if a branch of government is not fulfilling its constitutional duty. Or, say, if one of the parties declares that they will take the responsibility for the shutdown.

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