Trump Must Divest His Empire



Donald Trump.Photo: Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

When Japanese Prime Minister Shinzō Abe arrived at Trump Tower on Thursday to meet President-elect Donald Trump, he came with a gift. The first foreign leader to meet face-to-face with Trump since his election gave the avid golfer a $3,755 golf club. As reports, the club is a “Honma Beres S-05 with 9.5 degrees of loft with a 5S Armrq Infinity stiff shaft.” It’s also gold.

Abe’s gift wasn’t just a customary sign of diplomacy, it was also an attempt to give a boost to the company who makes the club, The Wall Street Journal reports. Honma has struggled ever since making its IPO in October. What did Trump give Abe in return for the $3,800 golf club? A bunch of shirts.

Emperor Von Trumpenstein said he would hand over his Empire to his children – for appearances sake! This will not do as Lawrence O’Donell superbly pointed out last night, stating the head of the  Office of Government Ethics launched us into more insanity by praising Trump for something he did not say he was going to do. He just hinted he might do something to make it all look good to the We People.

“Praise be to Doctor Trumpenstein! Praise be to Zardoz! The gun is good! The penis is evil. It shoots seeds that replenish America with brutal and illegal aliens!”

Donald, a Scottish name. The Trump Meister had a row over the pilfering of his Coat of Arms. The President of Japan gave Trump a golden golf club. This is the scepter of the True Anti-Christ who has Greek gods hovering over him. Trump is also the embodiment of a Roman Emperor whose symbol was the eagle. When the Romans put a golden eagle on the gate of Herod’s temple, the War of the Jews was on. You can see the Trump coat of arms on the pillows on the couch that guests can not avoid. Melania is Queen Sheba. the evangelical End Timers gave us THE GOLDEN BEAST in order to bring about their beloved ‘End of Days’ so King Jesus will come and rule over them.

13King Solomon gave to the queen of Sheba all her desire which she requested, besides what he gave her according to his royal bounty. Then she turned and went to her own land together with her servants. 14Now the weight of gold which came in to Solomon in one year was 666 talents of gold, 15besides that from the traders and the wares of the merchants and all the kings of the Arabs and the governors of the country.…

Because Trump is out to destroy the planet, and because he is the embodiment of America’s collective greed, I am founding ‘The Secular Order of Saint Francis’.

A friend of mine met  Constantine II of Greece. His wife, Princess Anne-Marie of Denmark, has he most amazing royal genealogy. I use this royal couple as an example of what the Trumps and his wealthy cabinet must do – even before he takes office – and owns untold wealth and power. The gold in Fort Knox will be his. Consider the grand vault of Solomon. I am the embodiment of Saint Francis.

Jean Gregory de Francis

The king in this fairy tale was Constantine II of Greece. His teenage bride was Princess Anne-Marie of Denmark. But in 1967, three years after their wedding, after a coup and a failed countercoup, the young couple and their two small children were driven out of Greece, making a harrowing escape that forced the family into more than four decades of exile. In 1974, while Constantine was living in England and forbidden to speak on his own behalf, the king’s subjects abolished the monarchy and stripped the royal family of its palaces, titles, property, and passports.

Divest is sort of a fancy way to say “dispose of.” It’s often used in a business context to describe companies or governments that divest some of their holdings by selling them off. It can also be used in the sense of taking something away from someone. For example if your boss becomes insane and power mad, his handlers may divest him of his title, meaning his position is taken away from him.

Donald Trump pledged Wednesday that he would leave “my great business” in order to avoid any appearance of a conflict of interest, prompting warnings from ethics experts that he must sell off his corporate assets if he wishes to resolve concerns about his financial interests influencing his new position of power.

In early-morning messages on Twitter, Trump left vague whether he would divest himself of his business interests or merely transfer day-to-day management to his children.

While I am not mandated to do this under the law, I feel it is visually important, as President, to in no way have a conflict of interest with my various businesses,” the president-elect tweeted, saying he would spell out the details in a Dec. 15 news conference.

In response, the federal government’s leading ethics agency appeared to take the unusual step of publicly urging Trump to sell his business holdings. In a series of casually worded tweets that were posted, removed and posted again, the Office of Government Ethics, the traditionally staid federal agency that often works closely with presidential transition teams, said that the “only way to resolve these conflicts of interest is to divest.”

OGE spokesman Seth Jaffe said in a statement later Wednesday: “Like everyone else, we were excited this morning to read the President-elect’s twitter feed indicating that he wants to be free of conflicts of interest. OGE applauds that goal.” And while the agency had not obtained new information about Trump’s plan, Jaffe said, “Divestiture resolves conflicts of interest in a way that transferring control does not.”

The OGE’s messages were out of character for an ethics agency that is famously discreet, its advice delivered confidentially. The Watergate-era agency has broad responsibilities, overseeing the executive-branch ethics program, preventing conflicts of interest and working with every agency of the federal government to implement a working ethics program.

The office’s decision to ­go public surprised outside ­government-ethics experts, who nevertheless joined to say that Trump must sell his assets to be clear of conflicts.

I think they’re trying to nudge him toward the right direction. And I think they should be doing that,” said Richard Painter, chief White House ethics lawyer under President George W. Bush. “OGE should be worried. There’s a lot to worry about here.”

A Trump transition official declined to respond to further questions about the president-elect’s plans.

Stuart E. Eizenstat, who served as President Jimmy Carter’s domestic policy chief and helped guide his transition to the White House, said that Trump’s announcement was “an important first step showing that he recognizes the concerns of the press and the public.”

Presidents are not bound by the strict conflict-of-interest laws governing most U.S. elected officials. Most modern presidents have agreed to sell or sequester their assets in a blind trust, led by an independent manager with supreme control, to keep past business deals, investments and relationships from influencing their White House term.

Don W. Fox, a former general counsel and acting director of the agency, noted that Trump’s disclosed financial holdings were unusually complex and widespread, saying, “It is not apparent on the face of it whether he could divest from all of his businesses.”

Giving company management to three of his adult children — Donald Jr., Eric and Ivanka — would leave open the potential for Trump to make presidential decisions for their benefit. The children have already played a key part in Trump’s governing preparations, serving on the transition team now selecting key appointees and sitting in on meetings with foreign heads of state.

If Trump’s family does take over management of the business, Norman Eisen, the chief White House ethics lawyer for President Obama from 2009 to 2011, said that an “ethics firewall” would need to be put in place to combat the “risk of improper preferential relationships and treatment for the Trump Organization with the United States government and foreign ones.”

Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus said Wednesday on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” that he was not “ready to reveal” whether the move would include Trump truly severing ties to his business or whether he would simply leave the day-to-day operations to the three children.

When George W. Bush assembled his first Cabinet in 2001, news reports dubbed them a team of millionaires, and government watchdogs questioned whether they were out of touch with most Americans’ problems. Combined, that group had an inflation-adjusted net worth of about $250 million — which is roughly one-tenth the wealth of Donald Trump’s nominee for commerce secretary alone.

Trump is putting together what will be the wealthiest administration in modern American history. His announced nominees for top positions include several multimillionaires, an heir to a family mega-fortune and two Forbes-certified billionaires, one of whose family is worth as much as industrial tycoon Andrew Mellon was when he served as treasury secretary nearly a century ago. Rumored candidates for other positions suggest Trump could add more ultra-rich appointees soon.

Many of the Trump appointees were born wealthy, attended elite schools and went on to amass even larger fortunes as adults. As a group, they have much more experience funding political candidates than they do running government agencies.

When is a logo a Coat of Arms? Ask the Court of Lord Lyon (1592)

By Neale Gilhooley, Evolution Design (updated 18/3/16)

Many companies create badges, crests and logos using shields and heraldic devices including various elements taken from a full Coat of Arms; a shield, helmet, mantling, wreath, crest, motto, supporters and decorations to create the perception of authenticity or nobility, an aristocratic premium product. Some create a full Coat of Arms and go through the full legal process of registering these, not as trademarks but by petitioning the Court of Lord Lyon which has existed in its current form since the 14th Century.

Donald Trump with his then fake coat of arms logoCompanies such as the Donald Trump Organisation inadvertently often fail to go through the mandatory legally procedure when used by a Scottish based company and find themselves in front of the Lord Lyon himself. It does not make the US Presidential candidate Donald Trump a criminal but his company were breaking Scots law and it was his family crest that they used as a company logo (image of Donald Trump with his company Coat of Arms courtesy see link for full story which dragged through the court for many years).

CoLL-home-300x193The Lord Lyon is the sole King of Arms in Scotland, an Act of the Scottish Parliament of 1592 gave the Lord Lyon responsibility for prosecuting as a criminal offence anyone who uses unauthorised Arms. A further Act of the Scottish Parliament in 1672 created the Public Register of All Arms and Bearings in Scotland, which is maintained by the Lyon Clerk and Keeper of the Records and contains an official copy of every Coat of Arms granted in Scotland since 1672. Any coat of arms – or logo designed to look like one that is not in the Public Register, if used for companies based in Scotland is not legal.

‘The double-sided eagle represents the dual nature and nationality of Trump’s heritage.

‘The eagle clutches golf balls, making reference to the great name of golf, and the motto “Numquam Concedere” is Latin for “Never Give Up” – Trump’s philosophy.’

Mr Trump’s championship course is now complete and 3,000 people have already signed up to play – but it’s not all the way out of the woods when it comes to controversy.

The clubhouse for Mr Trump’s Aberdeenshire resort – despite only being in the planning stages – has already been voted Scotland’s worst building in the comically titled Zit Awards.

MailOnline decided to have a stab at creating its own crest for Mr Trump, with the various visual elements signifying different aspects of his colourful life.

Central to the shield is a gaudy skycraper, denoting (literally) his business empire and (metaphorically) his virility.

Either side of Trump Tower stands a stylised ‘golden’ woman. These are a dual reference to his involvement in the Miss Universe and Miss USA competitions – as well as his ex-wives Ivana Trump and Marla Maples, who were rumoured to be awarded $25million and $2million from their respective divorces.

A ‘chevronel’ made from two hair combs are used to denote The Donald’s famous ‘comb-over’ hairstyle, while the bottom of the crest refers to his dogged persistence last year in trying to force President Barack Obama to make public his birth certificate.

Like its position on the shield, Mr Trump’s critics say his leadership of the ‘birther’ movement was the lowest point of his political career.

The motto is a loose Latin translation of ‘You’re fired’ – his favourite phrase from The Apprentice.

Read more:
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

Their collective wealth in many ways defies Trump’s populist campaign promises. Their business ties, particularly to Wall Street, have drawn rebukes from Democrats. But the group also amplifies Trump’s own campaign pitch: that Washington outsiders who know how to navigate and exploit a “rigged” system are best able to fix that system for the working class.

“It fits into Trump’s message that he’s trying to do business in an unusual way, by bringing in these outsiders,” said Nicole Hemmer, an assistant professor in presidential studies at the University of Virginia’s Miller Center. But Trump and his team, she added, won’t be able to draw on the same sort of life struggles that President Obama did, in crafting policy to lift poor and middle-class Americans.

“They’re just not going to have any access to that” life experience, she said. “I guess it will be a test — does empathy actually matter? If you’re able to echo back what people are telling you, is that enough?”

He countered by putting the money into the Anna-Maria Foundation, to allocate the funds back to the Greek people for use in “extraordinary natural disasters and charitable causes.”

Once upon a time, in a kingdom by the sea, a handsome 24-year-old king married a beautiful 18-year-old princess, and the people of the kingdom rejoiced, and the king and queen lived in a golden palace in the capital, surrounded by royal gardens.

The king in this fairy tale was Constantine II of Greece. His teenage bride was Princess Anne-Marie of Denmark. But in 1967, three years after their wedding, after a coup and a failed countercoup, the young couple and their two small children were driven out of Greece, making a harrowing escape that forced the family into more than four decades of exile. In 1974, while Constantine was living in England and forbidden to speak on his own behalf, the king’s subjects abolished the monarchy and stripped the royal family of its palaces, titles, property, and passports.

Now, almost 50 years after he left Greece, at a moment when the eyes of the world regard the country with pity and sorrow, when wealthy Greeks have long since stashed their money in other countries, and when young Greeks are desperately seeking ways to go anywhere else to find work, Constantine, no longer young, has chosen to move back to his native land, investing heavily in a new home for his remaining years and living as a commoner.

It’s not as if his life of exile gave him no pleasure. Constantine has thrived for decades at the pinnacle of international society,socializing with Europe’s royals (most of them his relatives). In 1986, to celebrate Queen Anne-Marie’s 40th birthday, Constantine took over Claridge’s Hotel in London for a ball attended by Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip (Constantine’s cousin), along with Prince Charles and Princess Diana, King Juan Carlos of Spain and his wife Queen Sofía (Constantine’s sister), Queen Margrethe of Denmark (his sister-in-law), and virtually all the other royals of Europe. The glittering crowd danced to Lester Lanin’s orchestra until dawn, when breakfast was served.

When Constantine turned 60, in 2000, Prince Charles hosted a gala at his country home, Highgrove. It was on that occasion that Queen Elizabeth and Camilla Parker Bowles retired to a convenient room for their first private conversation.

So the question must be asked: Why, at the moment of his country’s greatest economic turmoil, would Constantine elect to return to a commoner’s existence in Greece, the country that took away his crown, and even his citizenship?

“It’s a mystery to us,” said Dino Anagnostopoulos, the king’s lifelong friend and former classmate. “I don’t understand how a man who knows everybody who is anybody in this world would choose to go back to Greece—and especially now, when the country is going through such hard times.”

“Why” has become the central mystery of Constantine’s life. In person he comes across as a regular guy. He speaks fluent English with a bit of a British accent, and he enjoys hearing and telling a good joke, even at his own expense. Yet despite his chatty bonhomie, it is difficult to pin down the reason for the 75-year-old ex-king’s decision to return to his place of birth. In fact, it took three long interviews— two in Athens, one in London—before he would address the topic.

One would certainly understand if he never wanted to return, given the often traumatic events of his young life, beginning with his family’s escape from Greece just ahead of the invading Germans when he was a year old. The family settled in Cairo, where the infant prince nearly died after an intentional misdiagnosis by a doctor who was a communist agent (a second doctor diagnosed acute appendicitis and recommended a timely surgery). A year after his family returned to Greece, when he was six, he became the crown prince after his childless uncle, King George II, died and his father assumed the throne as King Paul.

 “The second time,” he said, “I was going to Tehran to meet the shah. When I got to Heathrow, I noticed that the flight was quite long, with two stops, so I changed to a direct flight on British Airways. When I got to Tehran the shah told me there had been an assassin on the Frankfurt leg of the original flight, but his people had intercepted him. ‘So what happened to the fellow?’ I  asked. ‘Do you really want to know?’ he said.”

In 1973 the colonels in the junta were themselves replaced by younger officers, and when the new leaders tried to stage a coup in Cyprus in the summer of 1974, it prompted an invasion of the island by Turkey, and military rule in Greece collapsed.

As the dictatorship was crumbling, the veteran political leader Constantine Karamanlis, in self-exile in Paris, was in constant phone contact with the exiled king in London. “We had been talking throughout the day,” Constantine said, “and that afternoon Karamanlis said he had been asked to go back to Athens. I said, ‘By whom?’ He said by people representing the junta. I said, ‘Shall I come with you?’ He said, ‘No, let me go and see what is happening and I’ll call you in the morning.’

“Of course,” Constantine said, “the call never came.”

Karamanlis formed a party, New Democracy, which won a resounding victory in November 1974, and then Constantine’s former ally called for a referendum on the monarchy for December 8. The king was not allowed to go to Greece to campaign or to speak to the people on TV, and when the results were announced, only 31 percent of the population had voted for the king’s restoration.

Having lost any hope for a return of the monarchy, the deposed king settled down in London, where he had moved in 1973. He opened an office in Mayfair and maintained contact with his supporters, who included wealthy Greek ship owners based in Britain.

In 1980, Constantine and Anne-Marie created the Hellenic College of London, where their own children were educated in both English and Greek. (After the escape from Greece and the miscarriage, Anne-Marie gave birth in Rome to Prince Nikolaos, in 1969, and then, in London, to Princess Theodora, in 1983, and Prince Philippos, in 1986.)

A devastating moment in Constantine’s long exile occurred in February 1981, when his mother died, at the age of 63, in Madrid of heart failure during eyelid surgery. The Greek government announced that it would allow the former king and his family to return for only a few hours to bury her in the family cemetery at Tatoi, where Constantine and his sisters had spent idyllic summers as children.

Constantine began negotiations in 1986 with the government of Andreas Papandreou to receive a financial settlement for seized property that had belonged to the king: the 10,000-acre Tatoi estate, the royal estate of Mon Repos, on Corfu (birthplace of many royals, including Prince Philip; it is now a public park and museum), and 7,500 acres of timberland in central Greece. Two years later “we reached an agreement that Papandreou was supposed to sign on a Thursday,” Constantine said. “But that Wednesday he collapsed from a heart problem and was rushed to a hospital in England. Our agreement was never signed.”

When Papandreou lost the election the following year, negotiations continued with the new government, and a tentative agreement was reached. But when Papandreou returned to power in 1993, he revoked that agreement. According to Costas Strongylos, a longtime friend of Constantine’s and his private secretary since 1999, “Under the new law, enacted in 1994, all of the king’s property was confiscated by the Greek state. The law further stated that in order for the king and his family to hold Greek passports, they had to accept the referendum abolishing the monarchy and select an ordinary last name like those used by all other Greek citizens.”

The king then sued in the European Court of Human Rights, which set aside the name issue and asked for valuations of the king’s properties. The government’s appraisers put the value at $550 million, according to Strongylos; the king’s put it at $500 million. The courts handed the case to a commission of three, which decided that the former royal family would not receive either estimate; the king would have to settle for 12 mil- lion euros, and his sister Irene for 900,000 euros.

The Greek government waited until the last day permitted by the ruling, then paid the king out of the country’s natural disasters fund, in order to make it look as if Constantine were depleting his country’s emergency resources. He countered by putting the money into the Anna-Maria Foundation, to allocate the funds back to the Greek people for use in “extraordinary natural disasters and charitable causes.”

About Royal Rosamond Press

I am an artist, a writer, and a theologian.
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