Cover image via @trumpism_45 on Twitter
By Bob Shanahan
I’m getting bored with all this winning.
President Donald J. Trump celebrated his 500th day in office on Monday and despite some setbacks and distracting detours, he has accomplished more than any other president in his first year and a half or so as commander in chief. In the face of a never ending stream of mainstream media attacks and Deep State collusion against him, the Donald is sticking to almost all of his promises and is making America great again. The media is being put in its place, immigration laws are being enforced, and the Democrats are running scared because of all of this winning.
Don’t believe me? Let’s take a look at his many victories and accomplishments over the last 500 days.
I know the stock market is not the greatest barometer of economic activity, but it is worth mentioning that it is up more than 33% since Trump was elected in November 2016. Americans’ 401K’s are exploding during the continuous rise of the Dow, S&P, and NASDAQ. Amazingly, the Dow just posted its first eight quarter winning streak in 20 years. And wages are finally starting to rise.
The Trump economy has set the record for the most Americans in the workforce nine times, even though there are still almost 96 million out of work and the participation rate remains stubbornly around 63%. Nevertheless, 155 million Americans are working today and unemployment, though an incomplete and misleading measure, is the lowest it has been since 2001. Furthermore, black unemployment ended the month of May at an all time low of 5.9% as the gap between white and black unemployment continues to shrink. Nearly 3 million jobs have been created since January 2017 and most significant is the fact that more than 600,000 of these added jobs were in the manufacturing and construction sectors.
Trump’s dedication to deregulation has been a boon for American businesses. “We will get rid of the redundancy and duplication that wastes your time and your money,” the president promised. And he has delivered. In fiscal year 2017, the Trump administration exceeded its vow to eliminate two regulations for every regulation added. Agencies have actually issued 22 deregulatory actions for every one new regulatory action. Consequently, federal agencies have achieved $8.1 billion total in cost savings from reduced regulation, equating to $570 million per year. For comparison, the Obama administration imposed between $5.7 billion and $15.7 billion in regulatory costs in its final eight months in office. Federal agencies under the direction of the Trump administration are committed to cutting more than $686.6 million per year in 2018.
The future looks bright in spite of the doom and gloom from many economists and market watchers of a coming crisis. The GDP growth rate is expected to be 4.8% in Q2 2018, according to the Atlanta Fed. At the end of the Q1, GDP reached nearly $20 trillion, the highest in U.S. history.
The catalyzing combination of the Trump/GOP tax plan passed in late December and continuous pro-business, pro-worker measures have resulted in widespread optimism as consumer confidence is at a 17 year high. And yes, I know that 40% of Americans can’t afford a $400 emergency expenditure, but this tally only included 12,000 or so people. That 40% could be very well be a distortion of the true economic situation of many more Americans who were not surveyed.
Although the federal debt is nearing $21.2 trillion and Trump is barrelling us toward $1 trillion annual deficits, nothing can be done about this until politicians get a backbone and tackle the unfunded liabilities of Social Security and Medicare. The president’s tax plan is without a doubt already benefiting most American households and businesses. Employees are going to enjoy lower federal tax burdens, millions have already received substantial bonuses, and businesses are investing more in U.S. operations after the lowering of the corporate tax rate. Business investment in the U.S. is now at encouragingly elevated levels. Bloomberg Markets reported in April that among the 130 S&P 500 companies reporting results for the first three months of 2018, capital spending increased by 39 percent, the fastest rate in seven years.
MAGA: Making Government Great Again and Draining the DC Swamp
President Trump has drastically cut back the size and scope of the federal government regardless of the exploding debt and deficit. According to Government Executive, almost 10,000 government employees have been fired in the first six months of his presidency. Taking his Apprentice act to the White House, a July 2017 jobs from the Bureau of Labor Statistics showed a drop of 10,700 workers from January 2017.
He has drained the bloated DC bureaucracy, fulfilling his promise to “cut so much your head will spin.” An article in the Washington Post read that his actions could “eventually bring the workforce down to levels not seen in decades.” Sounds good to me! By the end of September 2017, all Cabinet departments except for Homeland Security and Veterans Affairs, and Interior had fewer permanent staff than January 2017.
— Ted Abram (@TedAbram1) December 31, 2017
He’s also bringing common sense to our entitlement programs as our welfare state continues to decimate us financially. President Trump signed an executive order in April calling for the strengthening of existing work requirements for individuals benefiting from federal welfare programs. Emphasizing work for those who are able to is empowering and a smart move to get people off the government dole.
Putting America first, Trump plans to pull back our generous foreign aid to other countries. The president is merging the State Department and the United States Agency for International Development, according to a Foreign Policy report, in his efforts to make the executive branch and the federal government leaner and more effective. In addition, the Trump administration is cutting by one-third the amount of financial assistance provided to developing countries.
IMMIGRATION, LAW AND ORDER, AND JUSTICE
Though he has many faults, Trump’s Attorney General Jeff Sessions has taken on sanctuary cities in a significant way. Last summer, he said these lawless and virtue signalling cities and states will be subject to losing large amounts of federal funds. “So-called ‘sanctuary’ policies make all of us less safe because they intentionally undermine our laws and protect illegal aliens who have committed crimes,” Sessions said last year. This is what the American people want. Law and order. Safety, borders and culture. Sanctuary cities must prove compliance with federal law by not blocking law enforcement officers from sharing information on illegals detained with ICE, allow DHS officers into detention centers, and give DHS and ICE 48 hours notice before leasing anyone for whom ICE requested a detainer.
ICE has taken decisive action against illegal aliens under the Trump administration. An extensive operation of raids by ICE in February hit 77 businesses in San Francisco and Sacramento after making 21 arrests at almost 100 7-Elevens in January.
Although illegal immigration has spiked in recent months and the well-publicized caravan reached the San Diego border a couple months ago, deportations were up 40% since Trump took office and border arrests finished the year at a 45-year low. The Border Patrol made 301,531 arrests from October 2016 through September 2017, a decline of 25% from a year earlier. Immigration law is being enforced indiscriminately as law and order returns to our nation. Even with the decline, arrests increased every month from May 2017 to November 2017.
Trump is not only arresting and removing MS-13, drug dealers, and other illegal criminals from our country, he is also deporting illegals with no criminal record, according to a government report released just over a year ago. From January 2017 to April 2017, ICE was averaging 400 arrests per day, a 37% increase from the year before.
Nevertheless, thousands of Central Americans are crossing our border before the wall is put up. Trump has made the wall, which is already erected along 700 miles and more is under construction, a real possibility with $1.6 billion allocated for construction by the House Appropriations Committee almost a year ago.
Perhaps the most savvy and poignant move for instilling law and order back to this country was Trump’s decision to fire FBI Director James Comey last year. The bombshell firing shocked DC and ended the career of a self-interested, frighteningly political, and incompetent law enforcement director. His atrocious handling of the Clinton email server investigation was ultimately to blame, but it was plain and simple to anyone with a shred of intelligence that Comey could not be trusted to head up the Deep State’s Russian collusion investigation or continue to serve in a nonpartisan capacity.
The president has brought blind justice and common sense conservatism back to our courts. The President confirmed the most circuit court judges of any President in his first year and his monumental confirmation of Justice Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court will affect the nation for decades to come.
Most recently, the Supreme Court upheld the First Amendment and religious freedom in the narrow ruling granted to a Colorado baker who refused to bake a cake for a gay couple. In a 7-2 decision, the court declared that Colorado’s Civil Rights Commission showed unwarranted hostility toward the baker’s religious beliefs, saying it violated the state’s anti-discrimination law. Much more significant victories for freedom, free speech, gerrymandering, and immigration are sure to come from the highest judges in the land in the coming years and even later this summer.
President Trump has signed more than 90 executive actions in his first 100 days alone. The actions on a wide array of issues impacting the well-being of all Americans, included: dismantling Obama’s climate change initiatives, exiting from the utopian Paris Climate Accord, travel bans for people from countries rife with terrorist entities, protecting law enforcement, approving the Keystone XL and Dakota pipelines, reducing regulations on manufacturers, placing a hiring freeze on federal employees, and removing the U.S. from TPP.
Under President Trump, peace is possibly coming to the Korean peninsula for the first time in 70-plus years. The June 12th Singapore summit will be one for the ages, if it happens. A story that would have gotten more coverage under a Democrat president is the fact that 17 Americans held as prisoners overseas have been returned stateside, including one from Venezuela and three from North Korea.
Trump promised to decimate ISIS and he has. Obama created ISIS and promised they would be around for a generation, but that appears to be far from the case as both Syria and Iraq have declared victory over ISIS. As few as 1,000 ISIS fighters are estimated to remain on the battlefield after Mosul and Raqqa were taken back last year. ISIS has gone from establishing a caliphate during Obama’s time in office to losing 98% of its territory, almost all of which occurred since Trump took office.
Although Trump has made some disastrous moves in Syria with unnecessary bombing and reacting to false flag chemical attacks, he has taken a big step against battling the war-provoking CIA by shutting down its funding of terrorists in Syria. Trump has coordinated with Putin to bring peace to war-torn Syria and has initiated a few cease fires. The shutting down of the “train and arm” program of Syrian “rebels” was a significant move in Syria and a sign that Trump may have some foreign policy common sense after all despite his hiring of warhawks Bolton and Pompeo.
In an unprecedented action of fiscal discipline, the Pentagon announced its first ever audit of the Department of Defense last August. “Beginning in 2018, our audits will occur annually, with reports issued November 15,” the Defense Department’s comptroller, David L. Norquist, said. The DOD has never been audited, despite receiving hundreds of billions of dollars a year and having more than $2.2 trillion in assets.
BUT THERE’S STILL PLENTY MORE TO DO…
Now is not the time to become complacent, Mr. Trump. Yes, I know the 2018 midterms are approaching and you are up for reelection. But implementing your swamp draining and America first policies will only bring more Americans over to your side. Believe me.
The wall must be built and completed. The Mueller/Deep State/Democrat/MSM Russian investigation must be ended as soon as possible. The sanctuary cities must be punished for their lawlessness. The U.S. must reduce its involvement in Syria and leave Afghanistan once and for all. The trade war with China must be won. The economy must continue to hum along. The size of the federal government must continue to be slashed.
President Trump’s first 500 days in office have been more than encouraging. They have been outstanding. I know he has not been everything many of us hoped he would be, but he is the best we’ve got and perhaps will ever get. America is becoming great again. Let’s keep it great. The country is better off with Trump in the White House and he has only just begun.
Follow me @BobShanahanMan
Bob is a freelance journalist and researcher. He remains forever skeptical of the mainstream media narrative and dedicated to uncovering the truth. Bob writes about politics (in DC and CA), economics, cultural trends, public policy, media, history, real estate, Trump Derangement Syndrome, and geopolitics. Bob grew up in Northern California, went to college in Southern California, and lived 4+ years in Seattle. He now lives in sunny Sacramento. His writing also appears in Citizen Truth and has been posted on ZeroHedge.