Donald Trump has turned the White House into a bribe factory

For years now it has been clear that Donald Trump is the most corrupt president in American history. No previous president has continued to operate a vast personal business empire while in office — creating more than 3,000 identifiable conflicts of interest. As I predicted three days before he was inaugurated, he has constantly jammed taxpayer money into his own pockets, corruptly bullied foreign powers into doing him political favors, and turned the Department of Justice into an arm of his campaign.

Now that The New York Times has gotten access to many years of Trump’s tax returns, we have new confirmed details about one particular aspect of his corruption — getting paid for political favors. In essence, he has turned the American executive branch into a giant bribery scheme. Wealthy people with business before the state stuff money into Trump’s pockets through his many properties, and in return he gives them the contracts or policy concessions they want.

Here’s how the bribery machine works: an interested party spends tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars at one of Trump’s hotels, or golf resorts, or at Mar-a-Lago. That gets them in front of Trump — as he has spent nearly 400 days as president at those locations — and in his good graces, because he is exceptionally greedy. Then he is easily convinced to help them on some matter of policy.

Just 60 customers with interests at stake before the Trump administration brought his family business nearly $12 million during the first two years of his presidency, The Times found. Almost all saw their interests advanced, in some fashion, by Mr. Trump or his government. [New York Times]

AAR Corp., a government contractor fighting off a rival in court, held two retreats at the Trump National Doral resort, paying the president $120,746. It kept its contract and got new ones. The GEO Group, a private prison contractor, hired Trump’s personal lobbyist, paid at least $32,100 to Mar-a-Lago, and saw its government contracting rise from $500 million per year to $900 million. Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University spent $75,000 at the Trump International Hotel in Washington and got a bill passed removing restrictions on land it owns. And those are just three of over 100 companies that spent bigly at Trump’s various properties.

Various right-wing religious groups paid six-figure sums to Trump through his properties, and received “an array of favorable policies from the administration, including appointments of anti-abortion judges and measures exempting religious groups from anti-discrimination laws.” He also offered five members of his clubs ambassadorships.

Ironically, Trump is such an inept businessman that it appears he is not even making enough money off all these bribes to make his businesses profitable. The Times’ overall coverage of his tax returns show that he experienced a steep decline in income after 2014 or so, in part because his newly toxic political reputation killed off most of his brand deals. Massive loans that he personally secured are due for repayment

Read more

This Interior Designer Turned Her Cookie-Cutter Town House Into a Personal Art Gallery

“The biggest challenge was using what was already here but making it better,” says Tiffany (left). “This isn’t our forever home, so I had to be really smart about what I decided to spend money on and what just needed a small facelift. It’s way easier to bring your full vision to life without any restrictions, but the fun part is figuring it out with those limitations.”

“The biggest challenge was using what was already here but making it better,” says Tiffany (left). “This isn’t our forever home, so I had to be really smart about what I decided to spend money on and what just needed a small facelift. It’s way easier to bring your full vision to life without any restrictions, but the fun part is figuring it out with those limitations.”

When interior designer Tiffany Thompson bought this two-bedroom Portland, Oregon, town house in 2016, she was working at Nike and viewed its close proximity to the company’s headquarters as a major benefit. It also didn’t hurt that she had access to a community pool and tennis court, or that the drive toward her street was lined with towering trees. But the deciding factor, Tiffany remembers, is that it had a certain Pacific Northwest luxury. “What initially drew me to this place was the amount of natural light it received. It’s pretty bright all of the time,” Tiffany says. “Coming from Miami where it’s usually sunny, the thing that scared me most about purchasing a home in Portland was that it was going to be dark and rainy seven months out of the year.”

The challenge would be turning this cookie-cutter town house into a personalized haven. Tiffany was surrounded by a blank canvas. Luckily, her boyfriend, Julian Gaines, is a fine artist. “With all of the art, we want to evoke emotion and really let them be the highlight of our home,” she says. “Being with an artist is amazing because I have endless items to choose from.”

“For the dining room art, Julian imagined himself being next in line on his way to heaven and seeing the person in front of him receiving his halo,” she says. The table is from Lillian August, and the surrounding chairs are from Design Within Reach. The Studio Eero Aarnio Mini Pony Chair in the corner was found at Finnish Design Shop.
“For the dining room art, Julian imagined himself being next in line on his way to heaven and seeing the person in front of him receiving his halo,” she says. The table is from Lillian August, and the surrounding chairs are from Design Within Reach. The Studio Eero Aarnio Mini Pony Chair in the corner was found at Finnish Design Shop.

Tiffany couldn’t touch the exterior or overhaul its interior, thanks to a homeowners’ association and a limited budget, but she could reimagine its white walls. She pictured a theme of timeless and cozy beauty, punctuated by details that were functional yet exciting upon a closer glance. Tiffany considered her canvas for a year, figuring that it was best to take her time on “making this home feel like me.” And when she was ready, she landed primarily on a black-and-white palette. “It’s amazing how these two colors bring a sense of balance to a space,” Tiffany says. “There’s also so much greenery outside that the black-and-white palette grounded my home and makes the backdrop of the outdoors feel and look even more intense.”

“These types of homes have exteriors that all look alike, so it was important for me to have some features that were our own and fun,” Tiffany says. The accent wall is made of one-and-three-fourths inch oak slats that were nailed to the wall in one-inch gaps. The entire project was painted in Tricorn Black by Sherwin-Williams. The coffee table and floor lamp are from CB2, and the chrome Wassily side chairs were found on Chairish. The framed artwork was created by Julian and the masks are vintage.
“These types of homes have exteriors that all look alike, so it was important for me to have some features that were our own and fun,” Tiffany says. The accent wall is made of one-and-three-fourths inch oak slats that were nailed to the wall in one-inch gaps. The entire project was
Read more

This Tiffany Thompson Turned Her Cookie-Cutter Town House Into a Personal Art Gallery

“The biggest challenge was using what was already here but making it better,” says Tiffany (left). “This isn’t our forever home, so I had to be really smart about what I decided to spend money on and what just needed a small facelift. It’s way easier to bring your full vision to life without any restrictions, but the fun part is figuring it out with those limitations.”

When interior designer Tiffany Thompson bought this two-bedroom Portland, Oregon, town house in 2016, she was working at Nike and viewed its close proximity to the company’s headquarters as a major benefit. It also didn’t hurt that she had access to a community pool and tennis court, or that the drive toward her street was lined with towering trees. But the deciding factor, Tiffany remembers, is that it had a certain Pacific Northwest luxury. “What initially drew me to this place was the amount of natural light it received. It’s pretty bright all of the time,” Tiffany says. “Coming from Miami where it’s usually sunny, the thing that scared me most about purchasing a home in Portland was that it was going to be dark and rainy seven months out of the year.”

The challenge would be turning this cookie-cutter town house into a personalized haven. Tiffany was surrounded by a blank canvas. Luckily, her boyfriend, Julian Gaines, is a fine artist. “With all of the art, we want to evoke emotion and really let them be the highlight of our home,” she says. “Being with an artist is amazing because I have endless items to choose from.”

“For the dining room art, Julian imagined himself being next in line on his way to heaven and seeing the person in front of him receiving his halo,” she says. The table is from Lillian August, and the surrounding chairs are from Design Within Reach. The Studio Eero Aarnio Mini Pony Chair in the corner was found at Finnish Design Shop.

Tiffany couldn’t touch the exterior or overhaul its interior, thanks to a homeowners’ association and a limited budget, but she could reimagine its white walls. She pictured a theme of timeless and cozy beauty, punctuated by details that were functional yet exciting upon a closer glance. Tiffany considered her canvas for a year, figuring that it was best to take her time on “making this home feel like me.” And when she was ready, she landed primarily on a black-and-white palette. “It’s amazing how these two colors bring a sense of balance to a space,” Tiffany says. “There’s also so much greenery outside that the black-and-white palette grounded my home and makes the backdrop of the outdoors feel and look even more intense.”

“These types of homes have exteriors that all look alike, so it was important for me to have some features that were our own and fun,” Tiffany says. The accent wall is made of one-and-three-fourths inch oak slats that were nailed to the wall in one-inch gaps. The entire project was

Read more

The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society turned a Manayunk parking lot into an awesome Pop Up Beer Garden paradise

MANAYUNK (WPVI) — Travel just a half block off Main Street in Manayunk and you’ll find a lot filled with more than 22-hundred plants, many getting a second life after this year’s PHS Philadelphia Flower Show

It’s a space perfect for COVID-19 with 20,000 square feet of open space that can hold up to 150 socially-distanced people.

The cocktails use herbs from the garden and there’s a menu of bar food and a backdrop of urban grit.

The site holds a community garden, part of the PHS Harvest 2020 program to help feed families in need. Harvests are being donated to Manayunk’s Northlight Community Center. To volunteer in the garden, email Cristina Tessaro: [email protected]

PHS Pop Up Garden | Beer Garden Menu
106 Jamestown Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19127

Copyright © 2020 WPVI-TV. All Rights Reserved.

Source Article

Read more

House panel halts contempt proceedings against Pompeo after documents turned over

The House Foreign Affairs Committee is halting contempt proceedings against Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoHillicon Valley: FBI chief says Russia is trying to interfere in election to undermine Biden | Treasury Dept. sanctions Iranian government-backed hackers Treasury Dept. sanctions Iranian government-backed hackers The Hill’s Morning Report – Sponsored by The Air Line Pilots Association – Pence lauds Harris as ‘experienced debater’; Trump, Biden diverge over debate prep MORE after the State Department gave the panel documents it had sought.

Rep. Eliot EngelEliot Lance EngelThe Hill’s Morning Report – Sponsored by The Air Line Pilots Association – Pence lauds Harris as ‘experienced debater’; Trump, Biden diverge over debate prep Coons beats back progressive Senate primary challenger in Delaware Overnight Defense: Trump hosts Israel, UAE, Bahrain for historic signing l Air Force reveals it secretly built and flew new fighter jet l Coronavirus creates delay in Pentagon research for alternative to ‘forever chemicals’ MORE (D-N.Y.), the chairman of the panel, said the State Department handed over documents that had been given to Senate Republicans in their investigation into Democratic presidential nominee Joe BidenJoe BidenCast of ‘Parks and Rec’ reunite for virtual town hall to address Wisconsin voters Biden says Trump should step down over coronavirus response Biden tells CNN town hall that he has benefited from white privilege MORE as well as those it gave to the Senate after President TrumpDonald John TrumpHR McMaster says president’s policy to withdraw troops from Afghanistan is ‘unwise’ Cast of ‘Parks and Rec’ reunite for virtual town hall to address Wisconsin voters Biden says Trump should step down over coronavirus response MORE’s impeachment. 

Engel had subpoenaed the documents and threatened to hold Pompeo in contempt if he did not give them to House Democrats.

“It shouldn’t have taken a subpoena, let alone the threat of contempt, for Secretary Pompeo to comply with the Committee’s oversight request,” Engel said in a statement Friday. “Nevertheless, I’m gratified that we’ve received these materials and can review them before Senate Republicans issue their report.”

The controversy surrounded two batches of documents the House committee had asked the State Department to provide. The first is regarding documents involving the House impeachment investigation into Trump’s withholding of military assistance to Ukraine. Engel was also asking for documents the State Department has provided to two Republican-controlled Senate committees that are probing Biden’s work in Ukraine during his time as vice president.

The pressure campaign from Engel came as his committee is investigating Pompeo over whether he has misused government resources for political reasons.

The State Department had initially rebuffed Democrats’ request for documents it sent to the two Senate committees, saying it was not obliged to provide the information on Biden because the foreign affairs panel is investigating Pompeo, not allegations against the former vice president.

Engel repeated past condemnations of the Senate GOP probes, accusing Pompeo of aiding Republicans’ efforts to hurt Biden heading into the presidential election.

“This ‘investigation’ is obviously designed to

Read more

Miller Lite turned a Michigan lake house into a ‘groovy’ pad decorated like it’s 1975

MUSKEGON COUNTY, MI — There’s no other way to say it, 2020 is a bit of a downer.

Fortunately, Miller Lite has provided an opportunity for a weekend escape to 1975 through its Miller Timeshare, a Midwest pad dripping with 70s décor. Miller Lite was introduced nationally in 1975.

The property, which could be rented exclusively on Hotels.com for $96 per night, is located in Muskegon County on Mona Lake.

“End of summer travel looks a little different this year,” said Courtney Dugan, director of activation for Miller Lite. “But it’s still time for Miller Time, so Miller Lite created the Miller Timeshare, a groovy space for a small group to get together, put on a record, crack open some beers, and escape 2020 for a couple days.”

Miller Lite took what once was an everyday lake house and completely overhauled to take people back in time to 1975. The Miller Timeshare is complete with mod furniture, a bomb avocado-colored kitchen, groovy shag carpets, nifty house plants and funky wood paneling.

The pad also features a stellar game room with a pinball machine, old school record player and throwback ’70s board games. The Wi-Fi is also cut “because Instagram can wait, authentic connections can’t.”

Unfortunately, rentals for the timeshare sold out very quickly when they became available on Friday morning. However, you can see some photos below.

Miller Lite Timeshare

The groovy master bedroom features funky patterns and a retro mini bar complete with Miller Lite and old school snacks.Miller Lite

Miller Lite Timeshare

The party doesn’t stop indoors… your crew can hit the patio for some fresh air and fireside hangs.Miller Lite

Miller Lite Timeshare

The kitchenMiller Lite

Miller Lite Timeshare

Mona LakeMiller Lite

Miller Lite Timeshare

1970s decor in the Miller Lite TimeshareMiller Lite

Source Article

Read more