The recent election and being accountable

November 13, 2016
Fine as long as the mouth stays shut

“Okay, Fahrquar, say the words!”

Before I write anything else, I have to say one thing: I was wrong.

When I wrote after the Indiana primary, where Donald Trump de facto secured the Republican nomination:

When Trump gets swamped in November; when Obamacare becomes irreversible; when the Senate flips back to the Democrats; when even the House is lost; when Hillary gets away with her felonies; when all the gains we made in state legislatures and governorships are pissed away; when the economy still stinks; when the IRS goes back to abusing people whose opinions it doesn’t like; when the state grows and grows and grows and our rights shrink ever further and the world becomes ever more dangerous, well, that’s the choice you made.

I, along with so many others, got it all wrong. In fact, about the only people to forecast the election correctly were the Trump team itself, and a few perceptive journalists who saw the growing populist wave for what it was. My friend Salena Zito was one of the latter. You should really read her articles — she knows her stuff.

So, too, did Donald Trump, who spotted and gambled on a popular discontent with the governing class that most everyone else underestimated, and won.

So, just as I demand accountability in others, I expect it of myself. I freely admit I was wrong about Trump’s chances and the outcome of the election.

Does this mean I’ve become a Trump fan or supporter? No. I stand by my criticisms of him, whom I consider unqualified for the job, and his supporters, who’ve made an extremely risky bet with the nation’s future at stake. Were the election to be replayed, I would still oppose him and I would still vote for almost anyone but.

But, the election is over, and Trump has won in a legitimate, fair election. In a constitutional republic, that means we accept the results and give Trump and his team their chance to prove themselves. That’s what I intend to do: skeptical as I am, I will give President Trump the benefit of the doubt and a chance to prove me wrong, just as I did with President Obama.

And I hope he does just that. The passions of politics aside, the responsibilities of he presidency are so great, and the state of the world so parlous, only a fool would do otherwise.

I may have been wrong, but I am no fool. I hope President Trump succeeds and turns out to be a fine Chief Executive.

One thing has struck me in the days since the election: just how calm and accepting I and other “Never Trumpers” have been about the results. (Unlike the juvenile, thuggish Left.) I think it’s due to a couple of things:

First, relief that the Republicans retained the Senate and House with minimal losses, while expanding their hold over governorships and state legislatures. This bodes well for getting needed reforms done, and spares the nation of the horror of New York Senator Chuck Schumer as Majority Leader. It also gives me hope that the Supreme Court won’t swing in a more progressive, anti-Constitutional direction. Fingers crossed.

But, what gave me joy the day after was not Trump’s election, but the crushing defeat of Hillary Clinton and the Clinton crime family. To see “Lady Macbeth” denied that prize for which she’d sacrificed almost everything, including her professed feminist principles… Well, I’ll admit something else: I laughed out loud. Literally. That her and her clan of grifters and corruptionists and all their progressive hangers-on were left crying through the egg on their faces was a joy I’ll savor for a long time.

Whatever else comes of the election of Donald Trump, the banishment of Hillary and Bill Clinton from our political life can only be a good thing.

So, what comes in the future? Watching and waiting. I’ll support Trump when I think he’s right and I’ll oppose him when I think he’s wrong. I won’t rush to rejoin the Republican Party, because I don’t like the populist direction it’s gone in. But I will be willing to ally with them for the right causes. And I hope Congress will take this opportunity to reassert its role as a co-equal branch of government, checking the Executive when needed. Passing the REINS act to check the out of control regulatory state would be a great start.

But, for now, congratulations President-elect Trump, and best of luck to you in your administration.

The nation needs it.


Assessing Trump’s Acceptance Speech at the GOP Convention: Fact-Checking the Fact-Checkers

July 22, 2016

I’m not a fan of Trump (to say the least), but the sloppy work, bias, and outright dishonesty of “fact checkers” is something we shouldn’t tolerate.

International Liberty

Since I’m not a fan of either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton, I think that puts me in a good position to fairly assess whether the candidates are being dishonest.

And since several media outlets just produced their “fact-checks” on Donald Trump’s acceptance speech to the Republican convention, this is a perfect opportunity to see not only whether Trump was being dishonest but also whether media fact-checking is honest.

Here’s some of the “fact-checking” from NBC., with each indented example being followed by my two cents.

TRUMP CLAIM: Nearly four in 10 African-American children are living in poverty, while 58 percent of African-American youth are now not employed. Two million more Latinos are in poverty today than when the President took his oath of office less than eight years ago.

THE FACTS: Yes, 38 percent of African American children are living in poverty, according to Census data. But…

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Did Aliens’ “Private Hudson” foreshadow the Republican Party of 2016?

July 11, 2016
"We nominated Trump? What are we gonna do now, huh?"

“We’re gonna nominate Trump? What are we gonna do now, huh?”

Bill Paxton’s “Private Hudson” is a fan-favorite character in 1986’s “Aliens,” an overall great movie. But was he also an omen for the Republican Party’s fate thirty years later?

Don’t look at me like that, I think I’m on to something here. Consider:

The Republicans started the presidential cycle full of confidence and hope. They had many good, respected candidates. The current administration was unpopular, its policies moreso, and the Democrats’ leading candidate to succeed the president was awful. The Republicans had every reason to be confident. To act like “badasses”, even. Just like Hudson:

 

But things went downhill from there. An alien monster invaded the primary, and one promising candidate after another failed and dropped out until, on the night of the Indiana primary, Ted Cruz and John Kasich ended their campaigns, leaving the field to Trump. The race was seemingly over. Amidst the flaming wreckage of the party’s once-soaring hopes, it was “game over.”

Just as Private Hudson foretold:

I wonder if Trumpkins “mostly come out at night”?

Still, some fight on against Trumpery under the banner of “Never Trump,” refusing to give in and promising a fight to the death at the convention.

Did Private Hudson prophesy their fate, too?

Who needs the Oracle of Delphi when we have Private Hudson? smiley can't look

PS: Yeah, I’m “never Trump,” but the thought of this comparison got me laughing so hard last night, I had to share. Smiley Laughing Maniacal Clown


California Primary: my last ballot as a Republican, and the cowardice of state Democrats

May 22, 2016
"I get to vote twice? Gee, thanks, pal!"

Thrilled to vote against Trump

Well, that’s that. I’ve just filled in my mail-in ballot and cast my last vote as a Republican, the party I’ve identified with for 45 years. Like I said before, I refuse to be part of a party that nominates an anti-constitutional authoritarian populist demagogue. (1)

Instead I cast my vote for president for… (drumroll) …John Kasich. Not that I would ever vote for him normally (I still think he’s a sanctimonious ass), but what little polling there was for California showed he had the best chance of beating Trump in my congressional district. So, strategic voting it was. Go, Kasich.

"This is my happy face"

“This is my happy face”

 

That aside, there were a few other elections of note. In the race to be among the top two finishers and thus earn a spot in the general election for the federal Senate, we had 34 (!) candidates to choose from. (2) Since there was no way I was voting for Attorney General Kamala Harris or bigoted dimwit Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez, and most of the other candidates I’d never heard of, I cast my ballot for Thomas Del Beccaro, a former state chair of (what’s left of) the Republican Party in California. Who knows, with so many Democrats splitting the vote, he just might sneak into the top two.

For the House and  State Assembly races, I voted for the Republican as the only other choice besides the (statist, progressive) Democrat incumbents. Not that the Rs have any chance: there are so few in these districts, I think they can be counted on two hands with fingers left over.

Judicial races are always frustrating: few candidates even have web sites, and I never see them campaigning, so I know next to nothing about them when election day rolls around. My default is to vote for the incumbent or, if there is none, to prefer a prosecutor.

There was only one proposition on the ballot: a constitutional amendment to allow the legislature to suspend members without pay. I voted for it. However, this is also where the “cowardice of state Democrats” part comes in.

This proposition should have been named the “Senator Leland Yee” bill in honor of the Democrat state senator indicted for arms-trafficking. In addition, that same year, another Democrat state senator was convicted of voter fraud and perjury, while a third Democrat was indicted for bribery. 2014 was a banner year for California Democrats.

Funny thing, though. They weren’t expelled from the Senate, even though that body had plenary power and every reason to do so. Why, you may ask? Because expulsion meant special elections to fill those seats and, with all the negative publicity for Democrats these scandals and the expulsions would bring, there would have been a decent chance of Republicans capturing one or more. This, in turn, would have made it harder for Democrats to regain the filibuster-proof two-thirds majority in the state senate (they have that easily in the Assembly) that would enable them to tax-and-spend even more wildly than they do now. So, no expulsions, and the corrupt Democrat senators kept their seats until one finally resigned. (3)

However, to make themselves look good, Senate Democrats under then-Senate President Steinberg proposed this amendment to allow suspension without pay. That’ll show those crooks! This proves California Democrats are tough on political corruption!

Even though they refused to expel three corrupt Democrat senators… smiley well I'm waiting

Cowards.

Still, the bill is worthwhile on its own merits, so I voted for it. Ballot marked, envelope signed and sealed, ready to mail.

And now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to change my registration to “decline to state.”

 

Footnote:
(1) And those are Trump’s good points.
(2) And you thought the Republican presidential primary was overcrowded…
(3) Senator Calderon (D), indicted for bribery, took a “leave of absence” and was term-limited out at the next election. Senator Yee was suspended with pay until replaced in the next election. Only Senator Wright had the decency to resign.


I did not leave the Republican Party. The Republican Party left me.

May 3, 2016

First, a video I think fitting to the occasion:

Such is my mood.

Tonight, Donald Trump won convincingly in the Indiana primary, and Ted Cruz ended his race shortly thereafter. Thus, the last conservative candidate and potentially competent president left the field. All we’re left with is a choice between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, between an incompetent leftist who should be in prison and an incompetent would-be caudillo who is America’s answer to Hugo Chavez. And the latter is now the face and voice of the ostensibly *conservative* party.

With that, I am no longer a Republican, for I cannot be part of any organization or faction lead by a corrupt, emotionally unstable statist and narcissist who makes Barack Obama look like Solon.

To paraphrase Ronald Reagan, I did not leave the Republican Party. The Republican Party left me.

You know what amazes me? This election season. It began with such hope: an administration with unpopular policies; a corrupt, unlikable, and incompetent probable Democratic nominee; and a large Republican field offering many excellent choices. If any election was a shoo-in for Republicans and conservatives, it was this one.

And it all crashed and burned like the Hindenburg.

And you know who is responsible for this? No, not Donald Trump. He had every right to run and make his case to the public. Nor is the Republican Party ultimately to blame, though they helped create the conditions that drove alienated voters to Trump. The large field of candidates wasn’t responsible, because people could still have made a choice to coalesce around someone other than Trump. But, they didn’t. The media? Please. They whored themselves for Trump, certainly, but, again, the media doesn’t have mind-control rays to make voters vote a certain way. The final choice still stays with the true sovereign in the country: the voter.

And that is who is truly responsible and to blame for the rise of Donald J. Trump and the likely electoral disaster the Republican Party and conservative movement face in November, as well as the harm the nation will suffer under a Clinton presidency: the Republican primary voter.

Yeah, it’s your fault.

When Trump gets swamped in November; when Obamacare becomes irreversible; when the Senate flips back to the Democrats; when even the House is lost; when Hillary gets away with her felonies; when all the gains we made in state legislatures and governorships are pissed away; when the economy still stinks; when the IRS goes back to abusing people whose opinions it doesn’t like; when the state grows and grows and grows and our rights shrink ever further and the world becomes ever more dangerous, well, that’s the choice you made.

It’s all on you, the voter.

You maniacs. You blew it up.

On the verge of the easiest win we’ve ever had and a chance to make historic improvements in this country and undo the damage of the last 16 years, you decided that now was the perfect time to have a tantrum and break it all. Consider these six names:

  • Perry
  • Walker
  • Jindal
  • Rubio
  • Cruz
  • Paul

All of them were there for your choosing. Any one of them would likely have made a good president, maybe even great, and certainly better than Barack Obama has been, Hillary Clinton will be, and Donald Trump could be only in his dreams.

But, instead, you chose the guy who pandered to your justified anger. The con-artist who told you he knew how to make you great again, even though his policy prescriptions were so incoherent that even a resident of Wonderland would be confused.

The duty of a citizen is more than the act of voting and chanting “USA! USA! USA!” at sporting events.

The duty of a citizen is to use his or her vote wisely, with reason and thought toward what is best for the Republic, with sound judgment of the candidate’s character, and not to give it to a sideshow barker selling “Dr. Feelgood’s Miracle Cure.” There is no way a reasonable, sober, intellectually honest and responsible citizen could look at Donald Trump and think him in any way qualified to be president.

But then there’s you.

You had a duty, Trump voters, and you failed in it. You tossed away the heritage the Founders left us to swoon over a new Juan Peron.

You blew it up.


(Video) I’m angry, so I’m voting for Donald Trump!

March 21, 2016

No, not me, silly. The great Andrew Klavan:

It’s parody, of course (1), but Andrew captures well the irrational spirit of most arguments I hear from Trump supporters about why their guy is great: they’re angry, they want to stick it to the GOP “establishment” (2), he’ll make America “great” again (whatever that vague expression means), and they’re angry. Point out the truth about Trump’s record, how it clearly shows he’s unfit to be president, and you’re greeted with non sequiturs, irrelevancies, and anger.

Anger is not a winning voting strategy. Don’t vote angry. Use your reason and vote for the best and only conservative left in the race.

Footnote:
(1) In fact, I think he was as Cruz supporter from the start, but don’t quote me on that.
(2) A word that’s been so widely and sloppily applied it almost lacks meaning these days.


I hope @JimGeraghty will forgive me, but you need to read this. #NeverTrump

March 16, 2016
Fine as long as the mouth stays shut

Anyone but.

As penance, I suggest –nay, I implore you!– to subscribe to his Morning Jolt newsletter.

And it’s from this morning’s edition that I copiously excerpt the following, which anyone who seriously thinks Trump is a reasonable choice or that he has a chance of beating Hillary in November needs to read:

All the polling indicates Rubio would have crushed Hillary Clinton in a general election. Cruz looks like he’s got a shot — not a great shot, but a shot. Donald Trump’s general-election numbers are sinking like a stone. (If you can stand him, John Kasich matches up quite well.)

Trump’s fans walk around with great confidence about his general election strengths for which there is no real evidence. They’re convinced he will win over traditional blue-collar Democrats. So far, he doesn’t. They’re convinced he will win over African Americans. Polling in February puts his support among African Americans between 4 and 10 percent. (Romney won 6 percent.) They’re convinced he’ll win a lot more Latinos than everyone thinks. (He’s currently at less than half Mitt Romney’s level of support.) They’re convinced he’ll win Democratic states like New York, New Jersey, and Michigan. (He trails by 18 to 23 points in those states in the most recent polls.)

Trump fans gleefully point to his 7.5 million votes in the primary so far, and forget that the universe of voters in the general election will be on a completely different scale — probably 130 million voters. (Mitt Romney won 10 million primary votes.)

When you mention Trump’s awful head-to-head polling with Hillary Clinton, you hear a lot of references to Ronald Reagan’s trailing Jimmy Carter in March 1980. Ronald Reagan never had the unfavorable numbers Trump has now.

When everybody says, “Oh, the pundits and the elected officials and the other campaigns didn’t see the GOP grassroots embrace of Trump coming . . .” well, yeah; the pundits and the elected officials and the other campaigns thought better of the GOP grassroots.

 

People who support Trump like to say that not backing him guarantees a Hillary Clinton presidency. To the contrary, nominating The Donald almost certainly guarantees a crushing Republican defeat.

But there is still time to derail the “Trump train.”

Trump plays to fear, resentment, and anger. Instead of channeling it in a positive direction, he brings out the worst in people. He is a con artist who poisons everything he touches.

Ask yourselves, what evidence, what smidgen of a hint of proof, is there that Donald Trump would make a good president, or even a mediocre one? You think Trump will “hire good people” and take their advice? When has he in his colossal egotism ever shown that he listens to anyone but yes-men?

Electing Hillary Clinton would be a disaster, but choosing Donald Trump would be a catastrophe — first for conservatism, then for the nation if he’s elected.

We have a good choice. Take a deep breath, let go of your anger, and make it.


#NoTrump Thought for the Day

March 6, 2016

Choices Trump or Hillary

 

That’s pretty much how I feel about the prospect of having those two as the nominees in November.

via… someone on Facebook


Trump to #FatJudas: “Thank you for your soul, now go home.”

February 29, 2016

Oh, man, this is sweet. One of the great disappointments in recent days was New Jersey Governor Chris Christie turning his coat and endorsing Juan Domingo Peron… er… Donald Trump, a move clearly timed to distract from the beating Trump had taken at the Houston debate the night before.

Now, I’ve never been great Chris Christie fan, but I have had some modicum of respect for the man, given that he’s a reasonably successful Republican governor in a Deep Blue state. I disagreed with him a lot on policy –especially on Second Amendment rights– but I could also acknowledge his accomplishments.

That respect is now dead. Not only did a man sworn to support the Constitution of the United States endorse another man running openly as a tyrant, but to do so Christie had to jettison every single thing he said in criticism of Trump just weeks before, while he was still an active candidate. The self-serving hypocrisy is enormous, perhaps even more so than the Governor’s belt size.

And thus, to see him sent away like a potboy from his master’s table after introducing him at a rally in Tennessee was delicious. Watch, and enjoy:

In case you didn’t quite get that, Christie warmly introduces Trump, and then The Donald, (perhaps) not realizing the mic was so close and still open, says:

“Get in the plane and go home. It’s over there. Go home.”

And like a good little servant, Christie obeyed.

Hope it was worth it to you, Governor, because your political career is dead.

Now go home.

PS: Oh, yeah. About “#FatJudas.” That was the Twitter hashtag that sprang up after Christie endorsed Trump. Perfect.

 


#ConArtist #NeverTrump This is what you’re voting for

February 28, 2016
Approved by Juan Peron!

Donald J. Trump — approved by Juan Peron!

Of all the strange things that have been a part of the 2016 presidential campaign –experienced well-regarded Republican governors turned away, the leading Democrat under federal investigation and her chief rival is a leftover Socialist from the 60s, the media’s blatant bias– perhaps what’s gobsmacked me the most is the rise of Donald Trump.

This started as a year when, of the 16-17 Republican candidates that started the race, 8-10 could make a credible case for their nomination, and several were outstanding. At the time, I thought this was the strongest field to come along in decades and that we were more than able to take on a very weak candidate in Hillary Clinton.

Silly me. I didn’t reckon with a significant portion of the party preferring a blowhard bully with a demonstrable record of supporting progressive positions, screwing American workers, advocating tyranny (1), and having dealings with questionable characters of the organized crime sort.

Let’s take a look at the leading candidate of the nation’s “conservative” party, shall we?

Trump refuses to release his tax returns. Ted Cruz has speculated that’s because they will show Trump has organized crime ties. There is reason to believe he does, including with the Russian Mob.

Just the kind of inspiring figure we want in the White House, right?

He is also content to take praise and endorsements from White supremacists and former Klan leaders. Well more than half of the posts he retweets on Twitter are from White supremacists. After being endorsed by former Klan leader David Duke , Trump has repeatedly refused to repudiate this endorsement or denounce the Klan.

Just the person to repair all the damage Obama has done to race relations in this country, right?

And this fake who pretends to be tough on illegal immigration and spouts inane plans to stop it, who claims he’s the only guy looking out for the American worker, in reality hires foreign workers to do jobs Americans are quite willing to do. Just ask the Polish laborers imported to New York to build Trump Tower. The ones he ripped off. Or the Floridians who couldn’t get jobs are Trump’s Mar a Lago resort because he hired foreign workers on the false claim that no Americans were available to do the job.

This is the guy you just endorsed, Senator Sessions? Kind of makes a mockery of your claim to be an immigration hawk concerned about American jobs, right?

There’s so much more: these are just the items I ran across today. You almost can’t do any research without stumbling across even more appalling stories.

Finally Senators Rubio and Cruz are attacking him where it hurts –his overwhelming ego– and it’s getting to him. We can only hope it’s not too late to persuade those who haven’t sold their souls to him. This emotionally unstable would-be American Peron should never, ever, reach the nomination or, God help us, the presidency.

Never Trump.

Footnote:
1) What else can you say about a guy who praises China for the way it handled Tiananmen Square? Maybe he and Tom Friedman should become roomies.

 


Proof Republicans are the racist party of White privilege

February 19, 2016

My God, it’s practically a Klan meeting! You can just feel the structural racism in action:

Rubio Haley BennetonJust to make it easy for those who need help (take notes, Progressives): from left to right that’s Rep. Trey Gowdy, a White guy; Sen. Marco Rubio, Cuban-American; Governor Nikki Haley, Indian-American; and Senator Tim Scott, African-American. As Nikki Haley said, the photo looks “like a Benetton commercial.” The photo comes from a rally at which Gowdy, Haley, and Scott endorsed Marco Rubio for president.

Meanwhile, meet the leading Democratic candidates:

Democratic presidential candidate and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton shakes hands with rival candidate and U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders (L) and thanks him for saying that he and the American people are sick of hearing about her State Department email controversy and want to hear about issues that effect their lives as they participate in the first official Democratic candidates debate of the 2016 presidential campaign in Las Vegas, Nevada October 13, 2015. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson - RTS4CNFTell me again which party is the party of White privilege and the past?

smiley cool hey babe

 

via Jim Geraghty


Trump fans can be *so* sensitive…

January 25, 2016
Fine as long as the mouth stays shut

Just say no.

It’s no secret that I oppose Donald Trump’s candidacy for the presidency. In fact, it’s my belief that, if nominated, he would be a disaster for the Republican Party and the conservative movement and, if elected, an almost certain disaster for the nation. On Twitter, where one is limited to 140 characters, I’ve been rather blunt. For example:

Flippant of me, to be sure, and even uncharitable. But quite mild compared to what often passes for “opinion” there.

Still, one Trump voter took a wee bit of exception to my remark:

Then he proceeded to take his own advice and block me. A shame, really, since he seemed quite the wit. Oh, well.

In all seriousness, folks, and all joking about having my own Twitter Loony aside, I do think Trump would be a god-awful president. I’ve already been through nearly eight years of one incompetent who’s treated the Constitution and the principles behind it as afterthoughts; I cannot bear the though of 4-8 years under a successor who might outdo him.

Trump is a statist, cronyist, self-dealing egomaniac who should come nowhere near the White House, except maybe as a dinner guest. Yuval Levin was right when he wrote that Trump correctly diagnosed the rot in our political class and the public anger at it, but would prescribe solutions that are even worse. Don’t take my word for it: read National Review’s “Against Trump” symposium. Twenty-two strong conservatives representing three generations and the full range of conservative ideology –from libertarian to neocon, from religious to secular– have come out strongly opposing Trump’s candidacy.

I’ve said before that, with Governor Perry out of the race, it’s up to the other candidates to sell me on why they should be president. Based on what I’ve seen so far, I could happily vote for Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, or (less happily, but still easily) Chris Christie. But vote for Donald Trump? No. He is unfit to hold the office.

If Trump is the nominee, I will, for the first time in my voting life, leave that line of my ballot blank. (1)

PS: If “Micky” ever deletes that tweet, you can find  screen capture of it here.

Footnote:
(1) No, that does not mean I must want a Hillary presidency. (My opinion of Hillary Clinton is quite clear.) It means that, in a Trump v. Clinton (or Sanders) race, I would find both candidates so egregiously unacceptable that I could not vote for either in good conscience.

 


The Value-Added Tax Should Be Political Poison for Advocates of Limited Government

January 15, 2016

Tweeted this last night, but it’s worth its own post. There’s a lot to like about Ted Cruz, but his insistence that his new tax plan doesn’t contain a VAT, thus giving advocates of big government another revenue stream, is an annoying dodge. I wish he’d drop it, and the VAT.

International Liberty

It’s not my role to pick sides in political fights, but I am very interested in trying to make bad ideas radioactive so that politicians won’t be tempted to do the wrong thing.

This is why I’m a big fan of the no-tax-hike pledge. The folks in Washington salivate at the prospect of getting more of our money, but they are less likely to act on their desires if they’re scared that breaking their promises means they’ll lose the next election.

It’s also why I want the value-added tax (VAT) to become a third-rail issue. Simply stated, it would be a catastrophic mistake to give Washington an additional source of tax revenue. Especially since the European evidence shows that it’s a money machine to expand the welfare state.

Given my concerns, I was understandably distressed that two lawmakers (and presidential candidates) who normally support smaller government, Rand Paul

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Enough

December 16, 2015

I’m largely neutral in the Cruz-Rubio fight, having decided to see how things shake out, but my friend AG makes a strong case that Cruz is being –at best– disingenuous when he insists he didn’t support legalization for illegals during the 2013 Gang of 8 debate.

agconservative

Enough.

I understand that Cruz fans feel the need to defend their candidate, but there is a certain level of intellectual honesty that reasonable debates require. Several people have sent me @trscoop ‘s defense of Cruz today as if it is evidence that those accusing Cruz of lying are wrong. Amazingly, Scoop accuses Cruz’s critics of being dishonest while he tries to rewrite history and ignore damning evidence that proves his assertions are false.

Scoop, through Amanda Carpenter’s tweets, is essentially arguing that Cruz’s amendment (which would have effectively granted a path to legalization to millions of illegal immigrants) was simply a poison pill and he never actually supported a path to legalization. This revisionism requires people to ignore hundreds of statements from Cruz to the contrary. Most importantly, Cruz specifically said at the time that his amendment was not a poison pill. Cruz said the objective of his amendment…

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The Value-Added Tax: A Nixonian Scheme to Fund Bigger Government

November 21, 2015

The VAT is to me an obviously bad idea, especially as long as there is also an income tax. But why Senators Cruz and Paul would support one is way beyond me.

International Liberty

In early 2013, a reader asked me the best place to go if America suffered a Greek-style economic collapse.

I suggested Australia might be the best option, even if I would be too stubborn to take my own advice.

Perhaps because of an irrational form of patriotism, I’m fairly certain that I will always live in the United States and I will be fighting to preserve (or restore) liberty until my last breath.

But while I intend to stay in America, there is one thing that would make me very pessimistic about my country’s future.

Simply stated, if politicians ever manage to impose a value-added tax on the United States, the statists will have won a giant victory and it will be much harder to restrain big government.

But you don’t have to believe me. Folks on the left openly admit that a VAT is necessary to…

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Donald Trump won’t rule out religious identification cards

November 19, 2015
Fine as long as the mouth stays shut

Fine as long as the mouth stays shut

No. Not just no, but Hell, no.

Yahoo News asked Trump whether his push for increased surveillance of American Muslims could include warrantless searches. He suggested he would consider a series of drastic measures.

“We’re going to have to do things that we never did before. And some people are going to be upset about it, but I think that now everybody is feeling that security is going to rule,” Trump said. “And certain things will be done that we never thought would happen in this country in terms of information and learning about the enemy. And so we’re going to have to do certain things that were frankly unthinkable a year ago.”

Yahoo News asked Trump whether this level of tracking might require registering Muslims in a database or giving them a form of special identification that noted their religion. He wouldn’t rule it out.

“We’re going to have to — we’re going to have to look at a lot of things very closely,” Trump said when presented with the idea. “We’re going to have to look at the mosques. We’re going to have to look very, very carefully.”

This is the kind of crap that can only come from someone either woefully ignorant of History or suffering from a painfully tin ear.

I take a backseat to no one in my dislike for Islam and my wariness of jihad infiltration; I do not think we should be admitting Syrian refugees because, among other reasons, our ability to vet them for ties to jihadist groups has significant weaknesses. Just ask the FBI Director. To let them in is to take unconscionable risk with the safety of the American people.

But religious ID cards? Even to have that tossed out without immediately dismissing it, to include it in a range of reasonable possibilities, should disqualify him as a serious candidate for dog-catcher, let alone the presidency.

Not only is the idea offensive in itself (1), but I can already imagine the Democrats making hay out of this, whether he wins the nomination or not:

“We condemn the outrageous and racist suggestion of the Republican front-runner that Muslims should carry special identification.”

And picture Clinton, Obama, Wasserman-Schultz, Schumer, and every other Democrat intoning that over and over again in every venue they could find.  Imagine every single Jewish group in the US rightfully denouncing this, even if they loathe the Democrats’ treatment of Israel. Pity the poor serious Republican candidates who will likely have to answer question after question about what this moron said, rather than focusing on the crucial issues of the campaign.

Are we sure Donald Trump isn’t a deep-cover agent provocateur for the Democrats?

Via Jonah Goldberg, to whom I give the last word:

Now, I’ll bet Trump walks some of this back in the next 48 hours, just as he did with his initial call to admit Syrian refugees and other statements that have departed his posterior before his brain could catch them. But let’s be clear, getting the federal government involved in tracking and labeling citizens’ religious affiliations is abhorrent on the merits and a huge invitation to profound mischief down the road. Creating databases on all members of any religion is a terrible idea as well.

(…)

But I have little interest in going so far … that we actually resemble the straw men the Left has been screaming about all along.

Exactly.

Footnote:
(1) What else, Donald? Shall we make them wear green crescents on their clothing?

 


Remember kids, when you say someone is “hard-working,” you’re a racist

October 27, 2015

Liberal tolerance racist

For progressive racialists like MSNBC’s Melissa Harris-Perry, everything is seen through the lens of victimization and race, while every descriptor is really a code-word for racism.

In today’s example, Harris-Perry was interviewing Latino conservative activist Alfonso Aguilar about Rep. Paul Ryan, who will likely soon be Speaker of the House. When Aguilar described Ryan as “hard-working” (which anyone who’s followed Ryan knows is true), she interrupted him to ramble on about how this was somehow possibly unfair to slaves and working mothers:

Harris-Perry cut in to tell Aguilar that the use of the term “hard worker” was problematic since she had a picture of slaves working in cotton fields on her office wall to remind her of when to really use that term. Her rambling response also included an attack on Republicans for demonizing working mothers.

“I just want to pause on one thing,” she said. “Because I don’t disagree with you that I actually think Mr. Ryan is a great choice for this role, but I want us to be super careful when we use the language ‘hard worker,’ because I actually keep an image of folks working in cotton fields on my office wall, because it is a reminder about what hard work looks like. So, I feel you that he’s a hard worker. I do.

“But in the context of relative privilege, and I just want to point out that when you talk about work-life balance and being a hard worker, the moms who don’t have health care who are working. But, we don’t call them hard workers. We call them failures. We call them people who are sucking off the system.”

She then went on, over Aguilar’s protests, to slag all Republicans as being the demons she was conjuring in her imagination.

This from a woman who once wore tampons as earrings on national television:

Melissa Harris-Perry tampon earrings

Yep. I’m going to take her seriously. You betcha. Gravitas, man.

More seriously, Harris-Perry, far from being an intellectual, is herself intellectually trapped within the racialist framework the Left has built over the last 60 years. She can’t conceive of any other way of seeing the world other than through a lens of victimization and structural racism, so she employs a common weapon of the Left to browbeat and dominate her guest: deconstruction. Aguilar’s words don’t have their common meaning and they don’t mean what he intended they mean: Harris-Perry will instead tell him what they “really mean” –or at least mean to her, relativism making all opinions equal, no matter how asinine– thus implying that he and his fellow Republicans are racists, however unconsciously. Most targets of this, including, I admit, your humble host, will likely be taken aback by such an unfair imputation and stumble through lame denials, instead of cogently counterattacking. Thus the Left time and again wins the cultural battle.

At least in this aspect, they really are hard-working.


If Mitt Romney were president

October 18, 2015
"Voters' remorse"

“Alternate universe”

Let’s just say the ethics of the antiwar movement (1) are “situational”:

If Romney had been elected in 2012 and in the year before his reelection campaign had bombed a hospital, decided to keep troops in Afghanistan, and had details of his robot assassin program leaked, things would probably look a little different today.

If Romney were president right now, the White House would be surrounded by protesters and candlelight peace vigils night and day. Some would wave American flags, some would wave signs calling for impeachment, some would have pictures caricaturing the president as Hitler or an animal. They would chant “Not in our name!”, or “Bring them home!”, or “Hey ho, hey ho, Romney has got to go!”

If Romney were president, nightly news reports on CBS, NBC, and ABC would have regular features on war crimes, quagmires, and collateral damage. CNN would be wall-to-wall with team coverage of protests, interviews of bombing witnesses, and Anderson Cooper walking through rubble in full body armor.

If Romney were president, every political analyst left of Judge Napolitano would be fretting over the war-weary public turning the upcoming election into a referendum against the president and his party. Vox and FiveThirtyEight would have maps showing how many Senate seats Republicans would lose because of the president’s sure-to-plummet approval rating. And then there’s MSNBC.

And let’s not forget, Cindy Sheehan would still be in demand.

Be sure to read the rest.

via Instapundit

Footnote:
(1) Funny how they seemed to nearly vanish once a left-wing Democrat took office. It’s almost as if they really didn’t care about the war and were just using it for political gain. Nah…


Governor Jindal’s Bold Reform Plan Slashes Revenue to DC, Abolishes the Corporate Income Tax

October 8, 2015

Of the remaining Republican candidates, Bobby Jindal is perhaps closest to my own policy preferences, at least on matters of entitlements, spending, and taxes. Dan Mitchell takes a look at Jindal’s proposed tax plan and likes what he sees. So do I. Jindal likely won’t be the nominee, but it’s to be hoped he’s an important part of the next administration, assuming the Republicans win.

International Liberty

Give him credit. Most elected officials are content to tinker at the edges, but Governor Jindal of Louisiana actually wants to solve problems.

Look what he’s done, for instance, on fiscal policy.

He sought to abolish his state’s personal income tax, a step that would have dramatically boosted the states competitiveness.

That effort stalled, but he actually has been successful in curtailing state spending. He’s amassed one of the best records for frugality of all governors seeking the GOP presidential nomination.

And he’s now joined the list of presidential candidates seeking to rewrite the internal revenue code.

Since we’ve already reviewed the tax reform plans put forth by Rand Paul, Marco Rubio, Jeb Bush, and Donald Trump, let’s do the same for the Louisiana governor.

Regular readers hopefully will recall that there are three big problems with the current tax code.

  1. High tax rates that undermine…

View original post 659 more words


White House Blames GOP For $500 million Syrian Rebel Training Fiasco

September 29, 2015

But of course. Having craftily plotted to destroy Obama’s genius-level Syria strategy, Speaker John Boehner could retire a happy man.

Nice Deb

We’ve had seven years now of Obama screwing things up and not taking responsibility for it, so it should come as no surprise that he is blaming the GOP for his latest fiasco.

Obama’s $500 million program to train and arm the Syrian rebels has flopped in spectacular fashion,so naturally the craven Obama regime is pretending they had nothing to do with it – it was all the Republicans’ fault.  Obama never thought it would work. He just went along because John McCain and Lindsey Graham were just so goshdarn insistent he couldn’t say no. He didn’t want to hurt John McCain’s feelings, so he magnanimously let him try something big.

It’s offensive frankly, that anyone would point fingers at this president, when the fault so clearly lies with the Republicans in Congress. Obama’s fighting to make the world a better place for you and me, and other people…

View original post 638 more words