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March 13, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) --- East County Magazine's World Watch helps you be an informed citizen on important issues globally and nationally. As part of our commitment to reflect all voices and views, we include links to a variety of news sources representing a broad spectrum of political, religious, and social views. Top world and U.S. headlines include:



For excerpts and links to full stories, click “read more” and scroll down.


FAA grounds all Boeing 737 Max planes effective immediately (CBS New)

Planes already in flight will be able to reach their destination, according to the FAA order 

Trump said he wouldn’t cut Medicaid, Social Security, and Medicare. His 2020 budget cuts all 3. (VOX)

President Donald Trump’s 2020 budget breaks one of his biggest campaign promises to voters: that he would leave Medicaid, Social Security, and Medicare untouched…when it comes to Trump’s proposed changes to Medicaid and Social Security, the intent is unambiguous: These are cuts to benefits.

Trump budget proposes huge cuts to health programs for elderly, poor and disabled (Washington Post)

The Trump administration is proposing a sharp slowdown in Medicaid spending as part of a broad reduction in the government’s investment in health care, calling for the public insurance for the poor to morph from an entitlement program to state block grants even after a Republican Congress rejected the idea.The budget released by the White House on Monday also calls for a sizable reduction for Medicare, the federal insurance for older Americans that President Trump has consistently promised to protect


House Democrats introduce bill to offer 2.5 million immigrants chance at permanent status (Vox)

The bill, HR 6 — called the Dream and Promise Act — combines the longstanding DREAM Act, a legalization bill for unauthorized immigrants who came to the US as children, with a proposal to allow some immigrants with temporary humanitarian protections to apply for permanent legal status. What unites the two groups of immigrants is that both have put down roots in the US, generally living here for more (sometimes much more) than a decade but without permanent status. 

In another blow to Trump, judge rules in favor of ACLU in family separations case (Washington Post)

In a legal blow to the Trump administration, a federal judge ruled Friday that all migrant families separated during the government’s border crackdown should be included in a class-action lawsuit. But he stopped short of immediately ordering the Justice Department to track them all down. U.S. District Judge Dana Sabraw in California said the universe of separated families should extend beyond the 2,700-plus children taken from their parents last spring, and include families forced apart as early as July 1, 2017, and the months afterward, when the Trump administration was denying that it had a policy of separating families.

Felicity Huffman, Lori Loughlin among dozens indicted in largest-ever case alleging bribery to get kids into colleges (USA Today)

The Justice Department charged 33 affluent parents, which include CEOs and television stars, with taking part in an elaborate conspiracy that involved cheating on the SAT and ACT and parents paying coaches "enormous sums" to accept students who fabricated their athletic credentials at elite universities and colleges. 

Jussie Smollett indicted on 16 counts over allegedly phony claims of racist, homophobic attack (Chicago Tribune)

 A Cook County grand jury has indicted “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett on 16 counts of disorderly conduct for allegedly lying to police


Hundreds surrender as Islamic State nears defeat in last enclave  (Reuters)

Islamic State faced imminent defeat in its final enclave on Tuesday as hundreds of jihadist fighters and their families surrendered and the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces said the battle was as good as over.

Russia laws ban 'disrespect' of government and 'fake news' (BBC News)

 Russia's parliament has passed two bills outlawing "disrespect" of authorities and the spreading of what the government deems to be "fake news.  The first ban refers to "blatant disrespect" of the state, its officials and Russian society, and repeat offenders face up to 15 days in jail.  The second bill prohibits sharing "false information of public interest, shared under the guise of fake news," the TASS state news agency reported. Both new crimes carry heavy fines.

UN investigating suspected North Korean arms dealers in Iran (NBC News)

 Iran has yet to comply with a U.N. request to turn over copies of passports belonging to all North Korean diplomats in the country, report says. Read the full story

Desperate Venezuelans swarm sewage drains in search of water (Reuters)

As Venezuela's five-day power blackout left homes without water, Lilibeth Tejedor found herself looking for it on Monday in the last place she would have imagined - a drain pipe feeding into a river carrying sewage through the capital, Caracas.


Government budget

And yet despite his reductions to aid the poor and those of us on social security, the overall budget is rising to new heights. I recall Trump bashing former presidents (particularly Obama & Clinton) for having an out of control, rising budget. Interesting that Trump has the largest one in history, so how does this help the taxpayer? Only the wealthy benefit from his manipulations. Not the needy, retired, or even the working class.

Broken promises or good government?

Run the Government like we run our household budget? This Country was founded on the free market principle. Government spending hits new record highs and the President is trying to scale down "free, welfare, assistance, and giveaway" programs to begin his 10 year attempt to get the national budget where it belongs. The bleeding hearts always cry when "free" is taken away and they have to work for what they get. Kudos to President Trump and God bless America!

Trump promises

Not following through on his campaign promises - no surprise there. He's done a 180 from his boasting as he battled Hillary. Lower payments to the healthcare system equals less doctors available for seniors, the poor, and disabled. Cuts are potentially coming to HUD housing assistance, and the SNAP program which helps feed people in need, particularly children. This is what happens when taxes are reduced (mostly for the super wealthy and big corporations) and spending in other areas are increased, such as a massive push for military spending. And of course his legacy, the Border Wall (which he boasted that he would make Mexico pay for) LOL, joke's on the believers of this 'snake oil salesman'. Yet we all bear the financial burden of a president's (or any politician) actions, often for generations.