President Trump has some people working really hard for his reelection. They just don’t know it. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio sat down for an interview with CNN. Apparently, he doesn’t believe the Democratic Party has moved far enough left. He said “There is still a lot of moderate voices in the party that did not learn the lessons of 2016 and are not listening to what people need in this country.”
I think he was the one who didn’t learn the lessons of 2016 or 2018. Hillary Clinton’s ideology had nothing to do with her defeat. She was a lousy candidate, ran an abysmal campaign and the Left deserted her. Ideology did make a difference in the 2018 House races. President Trump made himself and the wall the main issues while moderate Democrats responded to the concerns of the electorate.
It is a simple matter of mathematics. Of the fifteen Pacific states and Atlantic states from Virginia north, she won all but one (Alaska). She only won six of the remaining thirty-five. You don’t find a lot of socialists in the states she needed to win.
Right now, analyzing the 2020 presidential election looks pretty easy. It is doubtful that Trump will change at all. If the Democrats nominate a good candidate with widespread support, they will be back in the White House. Otherwise, Trump will serve a second term.
Some people believe that there are millions of potential voters who stay away from the polls because no candidate is extreme enough for them. Each party tried that once. Barry Goldwater won six states in 1964 and George McGovern only won one in 1972.
Now that the holiday spirit is out of my system, it’s time to look at this week’s idiot of the week.
This one comes from a surprising source: Kevin Hasset, Chairman of the White House Council of Economic Advisors. He was trying to explain why the shutdown is good for the furloughed workers. He said that many would have taken time off over the holidays but are now able to save their vacation days. Evidently unemployment is just the thing people need to really enjoy the holidays.
Our political divide has led some to believe that all that matters is putting their policies in effect. To them the Constitution is an impediment. President Obama flouted it repeatedly. Now there are judges that pay no attention to it. They have ruled that Obama could do DACA by executive order but President Trump couldn’t cancel it. They also ruled that he lost the authority to ban immigration from certain countries because of campaign statements.
Trump has threatened to fund the wall by declaring a state of emergency. The idea that a president can then do any damn thing he pleases is totally at odds with our democratic traditions. Republicans often talk about their love for the Constitution and a strict interpretation of it. We are barely hearing a peep from them. He has spent his entire life running his business like a feudal lord. That attitude doesn’t work in the world’s greatest democracy.
We are a country of laws, not men. Keeping our democracy strong is far more important than any policy or any president. People should speak against it regardless of their view on the wall.
There has been talk of raising the tax rates to 70-80% to help pay for the Green New Deal. The problem is that there aren’t enough rich people to even make a down payment on their socialist utopia.
One thing I find interesting is their justification for people only keeping a small portion of what they earn. In his famous “You Didn’t Build That” speech, President Obama the real reason for a business’s success is what the government did by building roads, etc. The more popular opinion is that they are evil people (unless they are Democrats) who made their money by stealing it.
The real question is whether or not it’s a good idea. The problem is that the Far Left doesn’t understand incentive. They assume that no matter what government does to them, the rich won’t change what they are doing. It is in everyone’s best interest that they invest their money in ways that grow the economy and add jobs. I believe that the combined state and federal rate should not exceed 50%. If it does, then saving money on taxes is more profitable than earning more income. That is bad for the economy.
We are all better off if Congress makes decisions that aren’t based on hatred of the targeted group. Unfortunately, I don’t see any signs in that direction.
Earlier this week conservative columnist Mark Thiessen listed the ten best things President Trump did in 2018. Now he has listed the ten worst.
What I found interesting was not the items themselves but the nature of the offenses. Only three related to policy; pulling out of Syria, reducing troops in Afghanistan and separating families at the border. The other seven all related to behavior.
Politicians do not need to be boring, bland and politically correct. There is nothing wrong with being outspoken. Look at Harry Truman. Everyone, especially a president, should think before they act and not insist on doing whatever feels good at the moment regardless of the circumstances. If he could learn to do that it would benefit the country, the Republican Party and, most of all, himself.
The government shutdown is strictly about politics. President Trump set things in motion by insisting on funding for the wall. He knows it’s a hot button issue for his base. He talked about shutting down the government during the campaign. He even took responsibility for it. He was willing to compromise on amount but refused to budge on funding the wall.
Democrats believe they have him trapped. They won’t allow a penny to go to the wall. Each side is digging in deeper. Trump talked about extending the shutdown for years. This makes it harder for either side to try to resolve the situation.
Hundreds of thousands of government workers are currently out of work. So are countless people employed by government contractors. This affects businesses that these people support. Millions of ordinary Americans are being inconvenienced. They are all innocent pawns in this ridiculous game of chicken.
As is often the case, both sides are focused solely on the political battle and don’t care about the collateral damage they are causing. We deserve better.
Elizabeth Warren has formed a committee to explore the possibility of her running for president. Like it or not, the 2020 presidential election campaign has begun. As a centrist, I don’t expect either party to nominate a candidate that will reflect my views. It looks like I will have a lot of company.
Democrats may try to impeach President Trump over and over again. Unless some major scandal breaks, they will not be able to remove him from office. He may have some challengers but will likely swat them away like pesky flies. So, barring something really unusual, he will get the Republican nomination.
He has been in office just short of two years. By and large, he is the same person we saw campaigning in 2016. In two years, he has dome nothing to increase his base. If you have a MAGA cap and attend his rallies, he’s your guy.
Meanwhile, Democrats are racing each other to see who can move the farthest to the left. Some seem satisfied with letting Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez call the shots. She proposed shutting down every fossil fuel powered electricity generating plant in the country by 2030. Two likely presidential candidates have already signed on.
This emerging Socialist Democrat Party want unbelievable growth in government spending to fund their socialist utopia. Meanwhile, they will do whatever they can to hurt business. It’s the same approach Venezuela took.
So, what about the rest of us? We may have to choose between two alternatives that we find unpalatable. Both parties are moving to the extremes. This past election saw the defeat of many moderate Democratic senators and Republican congressmen. They seem far more focused on fighting each other than doing what is best for the country.
Richard Nixon used to talk about the Silent Majority. Eventually we will be heard. We will either retake the existing parties or form our own.
The government shutdown continues with no sign of it ending soon. Both sides are interested only in making political points. I’m not sure what to do with them. If they were children, we could send them to bed without supper. This game of chicken is ostensibly about the border wall. I thought this would be a good time to take a look at the wall.
There is substantial room for varying opinions on who we should let into the country. Hopefully, everyone agrees that we need secure borders. We must keep terrorists and criminals from entering the country.
The question is then what approach we should take. President Trump decided on the wall. If he followed his usual style, he would have reached that decision without any study or consultation with experts. Personally, I favor increased personnel and sophisticated sensors. It is hard to get past people and technology that are monitoring the border. You can get past a wall with either a shovel or a ladder.
President Obama’s foreign policy in Iraq and Syria was an absolute debacle. He withdrew our forces from Iraq and dithered in Syria. This allowed ISIS to greatly expand their territory. His response was tepid and the rules of engagement were so onerous that little was accomplished. To his credit, President Trump’s actions have greatly reduced the territory ISIS holds.
Now he is taking a page from Obama’s playbook and ordered our troops out of Syria. This will likely lead to ISIS and other terrorist groups getting stronger. Both Russia and Iran will gain greater influence. It shows the world they cannot depend on us. Worst of all, many of our allies will be slaughtered. Almost all foreign policy experts are opposed to it.
General Mattis has resigned in protest. He is the first cabinet secretary to do so since the Carter administration. We are losing some top-notch members of the administration. I fear that we may eventually see a bunch of sycophants who will blindly follow any idea Trump dreams up.
I thought I had my first non-political winner when basketball player Steph Curry said the moon landing was faked. He has now changed his mind and believes it happened.
The winner is Joy Behar. She was very upset with Senator Orrin Hatch, claiming he said that he didn’t care if President Trump has committed crimes. In continuing her diatribe against Hatch, she said “Maybe he needs to go to jail, too.”
She lives in a country in which she is free to say whatever she wants, no matter how ridiculous. Evidently, she feels that those that disagree with her should not have that right.