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Day 859

1/ Robert Mueller reportedly drafted a three-count obstruction of justice indictment against Trump before deciding to shelve it. In his new book, Siege: Trump Under Fire, Michael Wolff writes that his findings on the Mueller investigation are "based on internal documents given to me by sources close to the Office of the Special Counsel." According to Wolff, the first count charged Trump with influencing, obstructing or impeding a pending proceeding before a department or agency of the U.S. The second count charged Trump with tampering with a witness, victim or informant, and the third count charged Trump with retaliating against a witness, victim or informant. While the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel says a sitting president cannot be indicted, Wolff obtained a draft memorandum by Mueller's team opposing an expected motion to dismiss the indictment. The special counsel's office denied the claim, saying "The documents that you've described do not exist." (The Guardian / NBC News)

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

Welcome back. I hope you had some good R&R because it’s been total crazytown in Trump world.


Under Trump, the rich get richer. Give the rich a pile of money and they’re going to keep it. Why? Because they’re already rich. It simply goes into the vault and does not “trickle down” to help the average American. In this go 'round, “the vault” is stock buy backs.

President Trump’s signature tax law, the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, left wages growing less quickly than the overall economy, which itself got only a minimal boost, according to a Congressional Research Service (CRS) report released Tuesday.

"On the whole, the growth effects tend to show a relatively small (if any) first-year effect on the economy," the report found.

The report said the tax law’s effects on the economy were smaller than those predicted by a slew of forecasters and added that the economy’s growth was not consistent “with the direction and size of the supply-side incentive effects one would expect from the tax changes.”

The CRS, which functions as a think tank of sorts for Congress, also found wages were not growing as quickly as the economy writ large.

Adjusted for inflation, wages grew 2 percent in 2018, less than the 2.9 percent gross domestic product growth rate. For workers in production and nonsupervisory roles, wages grew only 1.2 percent.

The report’s findings fly in the face of many arguments Republicans made in support of the bill, including claims that it would pay for itself by producing a spurt of economic growth that would cover the revenue losses.

As proof, the GOP had pointed to big companies, such as AT&T, which announced large worker bonuses following the law’s passage. The CRS found the combined bonuses accounted for only 2 to 3 percent of the overall tax cut.

Instead, companies used large portions of the tax cut to buy back stocks, a move Democrats have criticized because it helps enrich stock owners, not workers.

Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), the top Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee, said the report showed the law did not live up to its promises.

"Republicans made three unbelievable claims about their bill: It would pay for itself, raise wages by $4,000 and jump-start investment in the United States," he said.

In fact, the tax cuts are paying for just 5% of their cost — not 100%. Workers did not see a significant wage increase — the tax cuts largely paid for stock buybacks that push CEO compensation even higher. And the tax cuts have had a negligible effect on investment in the United States,” he added.


4 posts were merged into an existing topic: Day 860

ISo many people are distracted by the shiny objects in front of them to see the rot below. Bonuses produce 2 pluses or the employer - a tax-free gift to employees, since they pass the employer tax onto the employee, and since it isn’t an actual raise, they aren’t offering any long-term investment into their work forces. But everybody was so quick to tout the ROI on the tax bill, like the trickle was a storm.


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