If there is anything the shows the marked difference between the previous administration and the Trump administration, this is it:
“And as the captains gazed south to the Land of Mordor, it seemed to them that, black against the pall of cloud, there rose a huge shape of shadow, impenetrable, lightning-crowned, filling all the sky. Enormous it reared above the world, and stretched out towards them a vast threatening hand, terrible but impotent: for even as it leaned over them, a great wind took it, and it was all blown away, and passed; and then a hush fell.”
-- J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King
On the rare occasion when I actually venture on to the Facebook I see it melting down over Donald Trump. Previously reasonable people are finding a bunch of reasons to decide that he's the Anti-Christ or something. These people come in two types: those that really don't pay attention to politics and those that pay too much attention to politics. And both of those attitudes are causing them to lose sight of the real issue.
Since the election of 1984 there really hasn't been much of a difference between the Democrat and Republican candidate. Oh, the Republican will talk about lower taxes and be more hawkish about overseas entanglements. The Democrat will say how scary the Republican is and how that crazy right-winger will ban abortion/put blacks back in chains/put guns on the streets. But when they get in office they generally do the same things.
One will shift the tax burden from one bunch to another, one will expand one department instead of another, one will invade one country instead of another. Very little difference in actual results though. No one since Ross Perot has said that maybe we better stop the trend of globalization and handing over our sovereignty to multi-national corporations and non-governmental organizations. When Perot talked about that sucking sound of jobs heading to Mexico both Clinton and the elder Bush said nothing. They were on the same side.
Andrew Breitbart said that politics is downstream from culture. A large number of Americans are noticing that we're being told that our American culture sucks by our supposed betters. Everything Americans do is wrong, we should be more like Europe, or Asia, or Africa. Of course, most people saying that have never been to Europe or Asia or Africa. Or if they have been overseas they've gone as tourists, happy to exploit the people that bring them drinks and towels for American dollars.
They don't see that even in the "richest" Europeans socialist paradises the typical citizen (or subject) there has a standard of living that hovers around what we in America would call the poverty level. And that they can only afford to be socialists because they don't have to spend hardly anything on defence. Team America: World Police has them covered. But still, a lot of the chattering class want us to be more like that.
You know what? A lot of people in this country *like* this country. They don't mind change, but they're not all that keen on changing just anything. Or everything. Or especially at the expense of the American people. And they're really not keen on watching a couple of people on stage debate on how best to strip us of our language and culture and heritage and export our jobs overseas.
Sadly, that's all we've really seen during the past few decades of presidential contests. No candidate has really expressed the idea that maybe America isn't all that bad and those problems we do have would be better solved by applying more American ideas to them rather than less.
And along comes Trump. He's not afraid to say he's proud to be American. He taps into that cultural unease that people feel. That worry that somehow we're losing what made us the nation that feeds the world, and beat the Japanese Empire, and harnessed the atom, and went to the moon. We've never been perfect but we're still a damn sight better than the rest.
I'd rather it not be a fast-talking New York real estate developer that is finally saying the things we've been waiting to hear. I really would. I'd rather it be a guy that has more emphasis on the other cultural values that the majority of Americans hold. But we weren't offered that.
And it's no surprise. The back benches from *both* major parties (and let's not fool ourselves, the next occupant of the White House, all 435 Congressional seats and all 100 Senate seats will be from one of the two major parties) have been groomed with the same larger government, job-exporting, global corporation supporting, unlimited immigration attitudes. So we're going to get the same song from both sides. Only an outsider isn't afraid to say that they are both wrong.
So we get Trump. My biggest worry was his Supreme Court picks but he's published his list and it's pretty good. You're not going to find anyone on the Trump Administration that's going to be looking to make huge, surprising changes... if you know what to look for. Oh there will be a lot of screaming from the left about how *regressive* it is to require English for a citizen to talk to his government, or how we probably don't need to be Federally funding Womyn's Studies or The Failure of Patriarchy in 13th Century Literature when we're handing out H1B visas for engineers. But anything that isn't full Marxism gets called regressive by the harridans of the far left anyway so no big deal.
I get that there are people that have serious concerns about taxes and terrorism and crime and civil rights. I agree with them that these things are important. But if America ceases to be America what difference does it really make? You're safe from terrorism while standing in the unemployment line. Your tax burden is zero because you can't find a job. You have the right to bear arms but can't afford to buy ammo. Please explain to me how that's better.
The worst of the anti-Trumpers are those that go on and on about how he's been this or that in the past. Hey, are you seriously going to judge a man on the things he's done for the people he's partnered with at the time? That's how business works for cryin' out loud. You dance with who brung ya or you don't stay in business long. The other side of that is that as long as you are in partnership with someone, you don't stab them in the back. This is crazy talk for a politician but for a businessman it's just standard procedure.
And now Trump is partnering with the American people. He has a history of staying loyal to the people he partners with. He may not hold their values, but as long as he's in business with them, he'll not betray them. That's a bad thing?
"Read my lips! No new taxes!"
"The era of big government is over!"
"TARP was a breakthrough intervention in the free market.”
"If you like your insurance you can keep your insurance."
These are the legacies of people that think they know better than you.
Trump isn't one of them.
I know who I'm voting for.
This isn't going to go down well with some folks. Not well at all, especially with those people that have family that have been or are still suffering. I can only say that we have family there too so it's not like we don't have a dog in this fight.
Unless they are insane, no parent likes to punish a child even when they obviously have earned it. The vast majority of parents hope that their children will learn by observation or instruction and do the right things. Sometimes when they don't, the authority of the parent must be applied to teach children that poor choices have consequences. Failure to punish that child will only result in that child continuing to make the same mistakes over and over again, eventually with much more dire consequences. A parent doesn't even like to see a child hurt themselves even when repeatedly warned. It truly sucks but sometimes pain is the best teacher.
So, much like the parent of a child that keeps running in the house and has been told that they're going to fall and get hurt repeatedly and is now standing over the fallen, crying child and letting the lesson sink in, I offer this:
Dear Residents of Staten Island and New Jersey,
At first, we were saddened to hear of your brush with the barely-a-hurricane that struck portions of your cities. At first we were moved, as we are always moved, to send relief supplies and money to help. The storm was a mere fraction of the size and power of those storms that hit Florida and the southern U.S. east coast and the Gulf Coast but we know first-hand that even a minor storm can cause temporary disruptions and isolated cases of disaster. We prepare for them, evacuate or ride them out, and then help our neighbors. In a few hours or days (or weeks in the case of Category III or greater hurricanes) the power will be back, we and our neighbors will have chainsawed and swept away the debris and life will return to normal.
We prepare for such things because they can happen and because government help is often late, useless or simply non-existent. We know this and because of our observations of poor government responses and because of our well-earned general distrust of the intentions and actions of government we take care of ourselves and neighbors are leave government to do the slow, inefficient response in those isolated cases where co-ordination of outside resources is necessary.
And after Katrina, and after the howling and gnashing-of-teeth that came from the media we took careful note and made extra preparations. We assumed anyone within reach of a coastal storm would do the same.
Apparently we were wrong.
Two weeks after the storm you still have quite a mess and by some accounts some places are getting worse instead of better.
We continue to hear of non-union electrical workers being turned away. (and no, one report by CBS News to the contrary does not "debunk" that. Say, did CBS ever apologize for forging the National Guard papers that Dan Rather tried to use to tank a presidential election? No? Likewise, a union representative denying it doesn't make it so.)
We hear of food shipments being refused because your nanny mayor can't be sure if the amount of salt and transfats are within his designated limits.
We continue to hear of people living in the dark for weeks at a time, of flood ravaged neighborhoods, of morgues that suddenly disappear right before a presidential election.
You continue to lack medical care because your government is too big and too slow to get hospitals back on-line.
We hear of your closest neighbors coming in on "disaster tours" armed not with bottled water and blankets but cameras to populate their gruesome scrapbooks.
We hear of the 122nd precinct police that were ordered to shut down volunteer food relief efforts on Father Capodanno Boulevard in order to make people think that only FEMA can take care of people. To their credit, the police commander refused and instead moved the relief efforts off the street and into a parking lot where network news cameras would not see them. Still, this is the end result of the politics being more important than the people.
And the less said about the Pollyanna-like notion to continue with the NYC marathon through some of the some of the hardest hit parts of Manhattan the better. Yes, Bloomberg finally canceled it after howls of outrage, and after a large number of runners dropped out to do storm relief instead. Still, those generators reserved for the marathon media tents just kinda sat there after the cancellation didn't they?
What's that? These failures can be contributed to your useless government and not to individual residents who are suffering you say?
Well, when your individual residents assault utility workers that are just there to help you, you can't lay that at the feet of the mysterious and far-off "government."
And besides, Staten Island, you voted overwhelmingly for Michael Bloomberg. You and New Jersey voted for the idiot in the White House that zipped in, made himself look good at your expense, and then abandoned you. Long after his photo op was done, FEMA continues to run out of water and food, you're still in the dark two weeks after the storm and the media doesn't seem to be telling anyone now do they? Where's Shepard Smith? Where's Jerry Rivers? And are you still chortling over National Geographic's "Doomsday Preppers?"
This is what you voted for. In this most recent election, in the 2009 mayoral election and in the 2008 elections Staten Island voted for Obama, Bloomberg and Obama respectively by nearly 3-to-1 margins. So much for Staten Island being the most conservative part of NYC. That rather seems like claiming to be the clean turd in the bowl at this point. And northern and coastal New Jersey votes for collectivist, big government, nanny staters regularly as well and in job lots. Chris Christie (who by our standards is barely a Republican, much less a small-government conservative) was elected in spite of their votes, not because of them. Indeed, a mere week after the storm while many of you were still trying to drag out wet carpet, find your wedding rings and were starting to smell your decomposing neighbors you happily pulled the lever for more of the same, even while you still hadn't seen hide nor hair of FEMA.
You vote for the people that intend to institute your failed big-government policies nationwide even while you are suffering from the failures of those polices and ask that we help you so that you can continue to force your choice of politicians on us. Really?
You voted for big government, even when some of the elderly among you still bear the tatoos of another big government. You voted for big government that has doubled our fuel prices and much of our food prices. You voted for big government that has spent trillions of our dollars fighting poverty only to have even more poverty now than in 1968. You voted for it, regardless of how poorly it has treated those that have to live under it or how badly it has failed in the past or how many have died from it.
So now that you've voted for all this big government and it's failing you, apparently we out here in flyover country are expected to send money and food (well, not food. Bloomberg said no to that) to bail you out. And when it's over you'll go right back to voting these statist monsters back into our lives. For this we should extend our hands in friendship and sympathy?
So, we're going to point out that the floor sure is hard, and say "Didn't we warn you not to run in the house?"
Yes, off to bed without dinner. Take it out of the taxes we've been soaked with.
As far as we're concerned you can sit in the dark and stay wet and cold and hungry. Until you affect regime change we're not willing to lift a finger to help you. You voted for "progress" and you got it, hard. There is not a more collectivist, big government, nanny-state collection of people on the east coast. So revel in your creation. Bask in the glow of your progressive paradise. May that be a substitute for the actual lights that still don't work.
For those of you that vote for less intrusive government and prepared for disaster you have my sympathies. Eh, but you still decided to stay there in the socialist paradise didn't you? Well, then, even my sympathies are limited.
For those of you that voted with your feet and left and left your statist pro-big-government tendencies behind we say, "Welcome to America!" For those of you that stay there and vote for more of the same, you have our contempt. And you will continue to have it until such time as you wise up and affect regime change there in your inner shitty hellhole. When you send Nanny Bloomberg packing and usher in someone willing to help get government off your back so you can rise or fall on your own then we'll reconsider. We'll be willing to help wipe that tear and say, "There, there. You did something stupid and you learned from it. Here, have a cookie."
But until you show some signs of learning from it don't expect us to subsidize your bad decisions.
Yes, we will do what we can for our relatives that live there and some of us will donate a bit to salve our consciences. But when the huge outpouring of support like you saw on 9/11 or during Katrina or Joplin, MO or the Texas wildfires doesn't materialize you'll know why.
When you hear that the American Red Cross has collected only a fraction of what they collected for Katrina, far short of the some four billion dollars sent for that disaster, you'll know why. Much of this disaster is of your own making. You wouldn't prepare, you didn't evacuate. You trusted your big government to save you. And you chose poorly. Only pain will teach you not to make the same mistakes again or worse, force those mistakes on the rest of us. Yes, it sucks. But continuing to save you from your mistakes will only make the next one worse. This big government addiction you have is a sickness. We really, honestly want you to get better but we certainly don't want you infecting the rest of us either.
What happens when a Category 4 storm hits Manhattan? What happens when it's 10 million without power for two months? Do you think your Bloomberg or FEMA or the Red Cross will do a better job? Do you still think it can't happen? Do you still think your government is going to save you?
Do you want the rest of us to suffer under the same restrictions once we're all living under a big-government socialist nanny state? Is that why you voted for more Obama? Would you rather we all suffer rather than a few succeed?
And if the answer to that is yes, tell me again why we should help you?
The Red States
P.S. When you're doing better (and you'll get through this. After all, your ancestors were Americans), let's talk. Let's work together to kick this big-government disease. We're ready to help, but you have to want to get better for it to work.
Comrade Obama went into last night's debate expecting to cross swords with the media-created strawman of Mitt Romney; evil, greedy and cruel. Instead, he met the real Romney; successful businessman, bishop of his church, man of integrity.
Suddenly King Barack the Unready could no longer hide behind his sycophants. He had to actually face criticism for the first time in decades. The results speak for themselves. He was the SCOAMF that those of us that have paid attention have seen for some time.
Round two will show us the other side of JugEars that the media has hidden; The Bitter, Angry Obama. His handlers will tell him he needs to come out fighting and he will show the side of himself that sent thousands of Mexicans to their deaths.
Round two of the presidential debates will be about foreign policy. I suspect we'll see a bit more spiking the football about Bin Laden being dead. And it's true, Bin Laden is dead.
Then again, so are Ambassador Chris Stevens, Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry and ICE Agent Jaime Zapata.
Obama has also tried to Blame Bush for all of the foreign policy failures of his administration and the media has let him get away with that too. I imagine he'll have about the same experience trying to blame everyone but himself for his failures.
You can live all your life in France, but if you weren't born there you aren't a Frenchman. The same goes for England, Germany, Japan, China, Yemen and Vanuatu.
Only America is different. You can be born here or elsewhere and still be, or at least become, an American. You can be 90 years old and immigrate to American and become an American.
That's because America isn't a place. America is a belief system. To be an American is to believe in liberty and equality, to believe that no man is greater than the law, that people have natural rights that government is formed to protect. To believe that America is great because America is good. To believe in that shining city on the hill.
By his actions, Barack Obama has displayed that he does not believe in those things. Regardless of what patch of earth he was born on, he's not an American.
Mitt Romney is. He has displayed that all his life. While I have serious concerns about whether Romney has always acted in accordance with those beliefs (Romney-care springs immediately to mind) his behavior over his lifetime indicates that he does believe in the principles of this country.
Barack Obama has not. To the contrary, he has repeatedly indicated that he does not believe in, or want to believe in, the American values that define our country. He has repeatedly demonstrated his disdain for American exceptionalism, his disregard for the sanctity of human life, and his disregard for Constitutional checks and balances.
While I have a great deal of trepidation about what pragmatic actions Mr. Romney might take to prop up our damaged economy, and what he may or may not do in the name of security, I am much more concerned about the actions that Barack Obama will take if re-elected. I feel that the mountain of Mexican corpses that have resulted from his Fast & Furious gun-walking campaign are only a precursor to what he plans to do to those who does not share his dreams of social justice and redistribution of wealth.
To put a rather fine point on it, I doubt Mitt Romney will be comfortable having people killed to make a political point. Obama has demonstrated that he has no particular concerns about doing so.
Therefore I will put my not-inconsiderable weight behind the Romney campaign. I have not been, and am not really now, a Mitt Romney fan. I did not vote for him in the primary. If there was another American running against him I would seriously consider considering casting my vote elsewhere. I would much rather back a serious constitutional conservative candidate. I would rather have Herman Cain, or Sarah Palin, or Rand Paul as the Republican nominee. I would rather the current Republican ticket were flipped. I wish there was a better choice.
But there isn't. There's just Romney and Obama.
And THAT choice is clear.
And now that the U.S. House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform has sent the resolution charging Attorney General Eric Holder with contempt of Congress to the full House of Representatives for a floor vote we get to watch while Mr. Holder gets a dose of his own medicine.
It is notable that this is not an impeachment. A contempt vote takes only one house of Congress.
The penalty for criminal contempt of Congress is not less than one month nor more than twelve months in jail and a fine of not less than $100 nor more than $1,000.
As others have noted, Obama has attempted to shield holder by extending executive privlidge over documents that Mr. Holder has sworn he never showed to the President. So either Obama or Holder is certainly a liar.
And by the way, if Obama pardons Holder then Holder can be called to testify against others in the administration as he can no longer claim 5th amendment protections.
This should be interesting to watch.
Interesting that the Obama campaign chose this motto for their new message:
I wonder what it means:
Hint: Click the bottom image. The word is "Forward" in Russian.