Trilateral Commission 2019 membership list of who really makes national & foreign policy

The 2019 Trilateral Commission complete membership list is included in this posting. Each member’s current and past major affiliations are described.

The 2020 membership list is now available – click link!

The group, founded in 1973, meets annually in secret with participants primarily from media, international business, think tanks, finance, education, lobbying and government. All major countries are represented, except Russia. The organization’s goal is diminished nationalist interests, and future government policies influenced by them and their organizations.

The Trilateral Commission’s agendas sync with those of the Group of Seven (G7) summits between the leaders of most of the world’s largest economies.

You can compare this year’s list to 2018, 2017, 2016 and 2015. Continue reading “Trilateral Commission 2019 membership list of who really makes national & foreign policy”

Seven men together are twice as rich as 16,800,000 median Black households, or 42,000,000 citizens

They are all white.

They are all men.

They are all rich.

But you never hear politicians, professors or protestors criticize these richest men in America, because wealth has its privileges and allows immense power.

It’s not just being able to buy your children entrance into the best colleges, or owning a $100 million house that you visit for just one week in the summer, or traveling in private jets, or even owning yachts that can cost as much as Queen Mary 2.

Great wealth also allows you to pay for political campaigns and earn eternal gratitude and favors to you and your elite class.

For a dire lesson in inequality, contrast the entitled rich to the median Black family in America, whose net worth is $16,300.

There are 16.8 million Black families, which equals 42 million individuals. Together, their total wealth is $274 billion, less than $7,000 a person.

If you are super rich it doesn’t take long to make that Black person’s $7,000 in net wealth. For example, last year Jeff Bezos earned $7,000 every five seconds of every minute of every hour of every day for 365 days.

Jeffrey Preston Bezos

Three men have more combined wealth than all 42,000,000 Black citizens of America – Jeff Bezos ($145 billion), William Gates ($99 billion), and Warren Buffett ($85 billion) – a total of $330 billion, versus national median Black wealth of $274 billion.

Add four more men – Larry Ellison ($65 billion), Mark Zuckerberg ($61 billion), Michael Bloomberg ($57 billion) and Larry Page ($55 billion) – and you reach a total of $567 billion – more than twice the wealth ($274 billion) of America’s Black citizens.

That $567 billion is enough to send a check for $5,670 to every family (100 million) in America. It could build 100,000 schools at a cost of $5.67 million each, or buy 22,680,000 new cars at $25 grand apiece.

After the top seven  the Charles and David Koch have $50.5 billion each. Those sons of the founder of the John Birch Society are the same guys who invested $800 million in the last election to put their candidates into office. That was less than one percent of their wealth and it created a host of friends in high places.

Worldwide, there are 2,153 billionaires, including 256 women, with a total wealth of $9.1 trillion, up from $7.6 trillion last year, proving once again that the rich do indeed get richer and richer, year after year.

The following video with Jane Goodall and others from DAVOS 2019 is more than worthwhile to watch:

 

Overcharging for the border wall is a major crime caused by private greed and political corruption

What do a U.S. Navy Destroyer and a proposed fence across the nation’s southern border have in common?

Both are ripoffs in their own fashion, designed to enrich private corporations and pay off politicians with campaign contributions or even old-fashioned bags of cash.

Too expensive to shoot!

The Zumwalt destroyer began as a great idea: build a modern, stealth destroyer with a super gun – the Vertical Gun for Advanced Ships (VGAS). Some 32 vessels were planned, but only three will be produced at a cost of $7.5 billion each, a total of $22,500,000,000.

By contrast, the fleet of Arleigh Burke destroyers, ordered for future construction, will cost about $900 million each, or 1/8th the price of a Zumwalt.

The Burke is a proven design. The Zumwalt is a catastrophe.

To show the gross incompetence of private contractors, once the first Zumwalt was launched, someone decided to analyze the cost of projectiles (shells) for its fancy new gun. The bill was $800,000 each round. This “surprise” was one of the reasons the ship was discontinued.

The proposed wall on the Southern border falls right into the no-expense-spared Zumwalt fiasco – another blatant use of private contractors for government (public) projects.

This year Congress has approved $1.375 billion to build only 55 miles of wall. That’s $25 million per mile, or $4,735 per foot.

What White House and Congress are proposing for $25 million per mile is really a fence – same design as politicians allowed President Obama to build – the type you see on tv with the teenagers climbing easily and sitting atop.

What would a real wall cost? Not an 18-foot flimsy, but a solid, concrete awesome structure, ready for adornment on the Mexican side by urban mural painters flown in from Chicago, New York and Philly

Could we build it for less than $4,735 a foot? You bet we can. Check this estimate:

Wall Plan for Dummies
Concrete Per yard $90
Shipping Per Yard $60
Total price per yard $150
Above grade wall in feet 25
Below grade wall feet 8
Total above and buried feet 33
Thickness of wall in feet 2.00
Cubic feet per running foot 66
Total cubic yards per foot 2.44
Concrete $ per running mile $1,936,000
Rebar price per running foot $3
Rebar price per running mile $15,840
Digging Trench per foot $20
Digging trench per mile $105,600
Price per mile $2,057,440
Price per running foot $390
Total miles $1.375 Billion 668

Using public management, not favored or friendly-to-politicians private contractors, we could build 668 miles, instead of 55 – with the same amount of money.

And you might build the wall thicker, taller, adorned with barbed wire and cameras, but no matter what you did, it should never cost $4,735 a running foot.

Fortunately, some contractors are still honest enough to question this waste of money. At least one has suggested that overpaying is not a blessing (unless you’re part of the gang in power approving the project).

What happens if you take away the payoffs and get down to bare essentials,

Fisher Sand and Gravel Company’s President and CEO Thomas Fisher said the government is more than overpaying.

“Our whole point is to break through the government bureaucracy,” Fisher said “If they do the small procurements as they are now … that’s not going to cut it.”

Fisher explained  that the $1.37 billion is enough for him to build 20 miles of levee wall in the Rio Grande Valley, plus another 214 miles.

That price would include warranty, electronic surveillance and a paved road on top of the structure, plus adjacent highway.

While Congress is aware of this proposal (it was one of the demonstration projects), it has ruled that the White House cannot construct it or any other concrete wall.

Compounding this disaster is the Army Corps of Engineers – which used to build using the Army, but now places contracts to private companies, so they can profit from public projects.

And the Corps doesn’t appear ready to even start looking at how to allot the $8 billion total that Trump is hoping to spend on the wall in coming years.

Reportedly, the Corps is also still considering how to spend $900 million for the project that Congress gave Department of Homeland Security last fiscal year, and has not requested bids from the private sector, because it’s still in the “procurement process.”

Despite the uproar by both political parties, only 35 miles of wall have been constructed in the two years since Trump took office.

How hard is it to just copy the Wall Plan for Dummies, email it, and request quotes?

Or maybe it’s just time to cut the red tape and call Tom Fisher at 800-932-8740.

Republican Mike Lee and Democrat Kamala Harris in bed together for plot against American workers

Talk about two, very strange bedfellows!

Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) and Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) might be described as Ying and Yang in their public political positions, but when it comes to destroying jobs for Americans, they are as inseparable as Ding and Dong.

This odd couple is co-sponsoring the Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act, a bill that would remove per-country caps for employment-based green cards, and give India a huge advantage in exporting their workers here to take Americans’ jobs.

Harris’ mother, Shyamala Gopalan Harris, immigrated to the United States from Madras, India in 1960. Her father, Donald Harris, emigrated from Jamaica in 1961 for graduate study in economics at University of California. She is Jamaican-Indian-American for those who like hyphenations.

Lee is a Mormon from Utah, who has earned a 100% rating from the Club for Growth and 99% from the Koch Brothers-supported Heritage Society. He wants the age for Social Security retirement hiked three years to 70, cuts in benefit payments to those retired, and a host of policies that mirror the John Birch Society’s pro-corporate, anti-public design for society. He is of English, Swiss, and Danish descent

Harris wants Medicare for All, is rated seven percent by the National Rifle Association (NRA), and believes companies should provide contraception under ObamaCare. She even posted some 3,600 different Facebook ads against Brett Kavanaugh, whom Lee supported for Supreme Court Justice.

Yet, when it comes to the so-called “Fairness” act, Harris and Lee join ranks with organizations including: Immigration Voice, Compete America Coalition, the Information Technology Industry Council, Google, Microsoft, The Heritage Foundation and La Raza. The giant technology companies are especially anxious to get this bill passed, so they can import hundreds of thousands of software techs and engineers from India.

Both six-year-term Senators spout the usual propaganda about why we don’t need jobs for talented Americans.

Immigrants should not be penalized due to their country of origin,” Lee said.

Treating people fairly and equally is part of our founding creed and the Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act reflects that belief. Immigration is often a contentious issue, but we should not delay progress in areas where there is bipartisan consensus just because we have differences in a other areas.

“Ours is a nation of immigrants, and our strength has always come from our diversity and our unity,” Harris said.

We must do more to eliminate discriminatory backlogs and facilitate family unity so that high-skilled immigrants are not vulnerable to exploitation and can stay in the U.S. and continue to contribute to the economy. I’m proud to join with Senator Lee on this bipartisan legislation to ensure that our country remains vibrant and dynamic.

The Harris-Lee bill works by lifting the current “country cap” immigration rules, which say that people from one country can receive up to seven percent of the 140,000 green cards sponsored by employers each year. This forces diversity to companies’ hiring of foreign workers.

In practice, loopholes allow Indians to double their inflow, with roughly 14 percent of the annual allotment each year. That 14 percent provides green cards to roughly 23,000 Indian workers, spouses, and children each year.

But that annual supply of 23,000 cards is too small for all the Indian workers who have been sponsored for green cards by U.S. and Indian outsourcing firms. The result is that roughly 630,000 Indian visa workers, spouses, and children are slowly moving through the line for green cards.

The huge population of temporary workers is made possible by Congress, which allows H-1B visa-workers to continuously extend their six-year stay in the United States, once their company sponsors them for green cards. That extension law has been used by the Indian outsourcing companies to greatly expand their “temporary” H-1B workforce already in the U.S. to nearly 700,000 workers.

Harris and Lee are proposing to end “country caps” and allow visa workers to get their green cards on a first come, first served basis. The Indian-run, middle-class outsourcing industry is so large that Indian visa workers will receive nearly all of the green cards for the next several years. A smaller group of workers will come from China, the Philippines, and other nations.

Michelle Malkin, whose parents were in the U.S. on employer-sponsored visas when she was born a citizen in Philadelphia, is a severe critic of the GOP’s pro-visa programs, and went after Republicans at the recent Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC):

It’s interesting because in sort of the mainstream establishment of the conservative movement, the kind that is essentially ruled at CPAC for year after year after year, there’s been — in my mind — not as much progress on (fixing) legal immigration issues, Malkin said.

And you hear it with this talking point, this platitude from many sort of defensive virtue signalers that ‘I’m against illegal immigration but for legal immigration. What does that mean? What numbers? How much? And who?

Asking the questions and answering them is so necessary, especially in this environment where the donor class and the establishment Republican ruling class don’t want those questions asked,” Malkin added.

In the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) latest research, Malkin said the supposed “highly skilled” H-1B visa foreign workers that are imported by big business and tech giants are not, in fact, highly educated:

The idea, for example, that these thousands and thousands and tens of thousands of people with H-1B visas are the ‘best and the brightest’ simply isn’t borne out by the data. And the data is the data. The data is not racist, the data is not xenophobic or discriminatory and it’s not picking and choosing. The data is the data.

And the data show that by and large, the vast majority of people with H-1B visas are journeymen and they are of average skill.

They are not the best and the brightest. They are not starting world shaking companies. They are not earning hundreds and thousands of patents that no American can secure and innovations that no American can come up with.”

Unlimited visa advocates and companies claim there is a shortage of high skill workers, but tests show that immigrants with foreign college degree score far lower than Americans graduates.

Michael S. Teitelbaum, vice president of the Sloan Foundation, said there is no shortage of American-born scientists and engineers.

Teitelbaum said there is evidence suggesting surpluses. He explained that there are significantly more science and engineering graduates in the United States than attractive positions available in the workforce. Similarly, B. Lindsay Lowell and Harold Salzman also pointed out the disproportionate percentage of bachelor’s degree holders in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) were not employed in those occupations.

Looking at the STEM labor market, Salzman said that, for every two students graduating with a U.S. STEM degree, only one is employed in STEM, because of a lack of suitable jobs.

For many, the salaries are too low, forcing them into other fields not infiltrated by visa hires. In 2014, the U.S. Census Bureau reported that 74 percent of those who had a bachelor’s degree in a STEM major were not employed in STEM occupations.

The argument goes that foreign workers are more talented or better educated, but CIS researcher Jason Richwine found that among those surveyed with at least a college degree, native-born Americans scored at the 74th percentile in literacy, while U.S.-educated legal immigrants scored at the 66th percentile. Trailing behind, foreign-educated legal immigrants, brought to the U.S. to take high-paying American jobs, scored at the 42nd percentile in literacy.

A good example of how unfair our visa programs have become is Jay Palmer, a software expert who was forced to train his Indian replacement, after he was terminated from his Florida job at Disney Corporation:

The federal offer of green cards to foreign workers tilts the field decisively by providing huge government-funded prizes — work permits, green cards, and citizenship – to foreign workers, who agree to take Americans’ jobs at lower wages, work longer hours, live in overcrowded apartments, move from city to city, and complain less, Palmer said.

Indian managers rationally exclude young American graduates from new jobs, and instead hire Indian visa workers, he explained.

Indians only hire Indians because they can manipulate them, exploit them, and the young workers just take it because [any job in the United States] is better than being back in a poverty-stricken nation…they’ll work 70 to 80 hours a week … and they won’t complain.

Worse, many American firms rely on Indian subcontractors to do introductory jobs, such as software testing and maintenance. The result is that few Americans get starter jobs in the technology sector, Palmer said.

Many Americans are talented but they have little hope of getting a job in the tech fields because they will ask for fair wages.

The Harris-Lee Senate bill is additionally cosponsored by

Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO)
Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME)
Sen. Jim Moran (R-KS)
Sen. Tom Carper (D-DE)
Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR)
Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-WA)
Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO)
Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR)
Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI)
Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR)
Sen. Michael Bennet (D-CO)
Sen. Kevin Cramer (R-ND)
Sen. Krysten Sinema (D-AZ)
Sen. Mike Crapo (R-ID)
Sen. James Lankford (R-OK)
Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL)
Sen. Martha McSally (R-AZ)

The companion House bill is sponsored by all these Republicans:

Rep. Ken Buck, R-Colo., Rep. Don Bacon, R-Neb., Rep. Any Barr, R-Ky, Rep. Gus Bilirakis, R-Fla, Rep. Susan Brooks, R-Ind, Rep. Ken Calvert, Ken, R-Calif., Rep. Ken Calvert, Ken, R-Calif., Rep. Jenniffer Gonzalez-Colon, R-P.R.,  Rep. Michael Guest, R-Miss., Rep. Brett Guthrie, R-Ky., Rep. John Curtis, R-Utah., Rep. Rodney Davis, R-Ill.,  Rep. Tom Emmer, R-Minn., Rep. Ron Estes, R-Kan., Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick, R-Pa., Rep. Bob Gibbs, R-Ohio., Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Wash., Rep. Jody Hice, R-Ga., Rep. French Hill, R-Ark., Rep. Will Hurd, R-Texas., Rep. Bill Johnson, R-Ohio., Rep. John Katko, R-N.Y., Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill., Rep. Billy Long, R-Mo., Rep. Roger Marshall, R-Kans., Rep. Thomas Massie, R-Ky., Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, R-Wash., Rep. Ralph Norman, R-S.C., Rep. Scott Perry, R-Pa.,  Rep. Denver Riggleman, R-Va., Rep. David Roe, R-Tenn., Rep. John Rutherford, R-Fla., Rep. Elise, Stefanik, R-N.Y., Rep. Chris Stewart, R-Utah., Rep. Steve Stivers, R-Ohio, Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich., Rep. Ann Wagner, R-Mo., Rep. Bruce Westerman, R-Ark., Rep. Don Young, R-Ak., Rep. Dan Newhouse, R-Wash., Rep. Pete Stauber, R-Minn., Rep. David Schweikert, R-Az.,  Rep. Steven Watkins, R-Kan., Rep. Rob Bishop, R-Utah., Rep. Mac Thornberry, R-Texas., Rep. Mike Kelly, R-Pa., Rep. David Rouzer, R-N.C., Rep. Larry Bucshon, R-Ind., Rep. Lance Gooden, R-Texas., Rep. Glenn Thompson, R-Pa.,

And all these Democrats:

Rep. Betty McCollum, D-Minn., Rep. Donald McEachin, D-Va., Rep. James McGovern, D-Mass., Rep. Gregory Meeks, D-N.Y., Rep. Grace Meng, D-N.Y., Rep. Gwen Moore, D-Wisc., Rep. Joseph Morelle, D-N.Y., Rep. Frank Pallone, D-N.J., Rep. Jimmy Panetta, D-Calif., Rep. Bill Pascrell, D-N.J., Rep. Chellie Pingree, D-Maine., Rep. Kathleen Rice, D-N.Y., Rep. John Sarbanes, D-Md., Rep. Jan Schakowsky, D-Ill., Rep. Donna Shalala, D-Fla., Rep. Albio Sires, D-N.J., Rep. Adam Smith, D-Wash., Rep. Darren Soto, D-Fla., Rep. Jackie Speier, D-Calif., Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-Calif., Rep. Mark Takano, D-Calif., Rep. Dina Titus, D-N.V., Rep. Paul Tonko, D-N.Y., Rep. Joyce Beatty, D-Ohio, Rep. Ami Bera, D-Calif, Rep. Earl Blumenauer, D-Ore, Rep. Suzanne Bonamici, D-Ore., Rep. Julia Brownley, D-Calif., Rep. Tony Cardenas, D-Calif., Rep. Andre Carson, D-Ind., Rep. David Cicilline, D-R.I., Rep. Yvette Clarke,  D-N.Y., Rep. Steve Cohen, D-Tenn., Rep. James Comer, D-Ky., Rep. Jim Cooper, D-Tenn., Rep. Jim Costa, D-Calif., Rep. Joe Courtney, D-Conn., Rep. T.J. Cox, D-Calif., Rep. Jason Crow, D-Colo., Rep. Diana DeGette, D-Colo., Rep. Ted Deutch, D-Fla., Rep. Debbie Dingell, D-Mich., Rep. Michael Doyle, D-Pa., Rep. Eliot Engel, D-N.Y., Rep. Anna Eshoo, D-Calif., Rep. Adriano Espaillat, D-N.Y., Rep. Sharice Davids, D-Kan., Rep. Bill Foster, D-Il., Rep. Vincente Gonzalez, D-Texas.,Rep. Josh Harder, D-Calif., Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, D-Texas., Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., Rep. Eddie Johnson, D-Texas., Rep. Hank Johnson, D-Ga., Rep. Ro Khanna, D-Calif., Rep. Ron Kind, D-Wisc., Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi, D-Ill., Rep. Ann Kuster, D-N.H., Rep. James Langevin, D-R.I., Rep. Rick Larsen, D-Wash., Rep. Al Lawson, D-Fla., Rep. Alan Lowenthal, D-Calif., Rep. Tom Malinowski, D-N.J., Rep. Doris Matsui, D-Calif., Rep. Lucy McBath, D-Ga., Rep. Norma Torres, D-Calif., Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman, D-N.J., Rep. Peter Welch, D-Vt., Rep. Susan Wild, D-Pa., Rep. Rob Woodall, R-Ga., Rep. John Yarmuth, D-Ky., Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., Rep. Pete Aguilar, D-Ca., Rep. Stephanie Murphy, D-Fla., Rep. Suzan DelBene, D-Wash., Rep. Salud Carbajal, D-Calif., Rep. Nydia Velazquez, D-N.Y., Rep. Lois Frankel, D-Fla., Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla., Rep. Mary Scanlon, D-Pa., Rep. John Garamendi, D-Ga., Rep. Jared Golden, D-Maine., Rep. Sylvia Garcia, D-Texas., Rep. Joe Kennedy, D-Mass., Rep. Matt Cartwright, D-Pa., Rep. Bradley Schneider, D-Ill., Rep. Bobby Rush, D-Ill., Rep. Sean Patrick, D-N.Y., Rep. Kim Schrier, D-Wash., Rep. Conor Lamb, D-Pa., Rep. Brian Higgins, D-N.Y., Rep. Alma Adams, D-N.C., Rep. Alcee Hastings, D-Fla., Rep. Scott Peters, D-Calif., Rep. Robin Kelly, D-Ill., Rep. Derek Kilmer,  D-Wash.

It is amazing how “bipartisan” our crooked Congress has become, when it has the opportunity to cut wages of the American middle class, satisfy corporate greed, and ensure future campaign contributions, personal gifts and secret payoffs.