The Problem of Identity Politics and Its Solution, by Matthew Continetti. From Imprimis.

The beginnings of identity politics can be traced to 1973, the year the first volume of Alexander Solzhenitsyn’s Gulag Archipelago—a book that demolished any pretense of communism’s moral authority—was published in the West. The ideological challenge of socialism was fading, its fighting spirit dwindling. This presented a challenge for the Left: how to carry on the fight against capitalism when its major ideological alternative was no longer viable?

The Left found its answer in an identity politics that grew out of anti-colonialism. Marx’s class struggle was reformulated into an ethno-racial struggle—a ceaseless competition between colonizer and colonized, victimizer and victim, oppressor and oppressed. Instead of presenting collectivism and central planning as the gateway to the realization of genuine freedom, the new multiculturalist Left turned to unmasking the supposed power relations that subordinated minorities and exploited third world nations.

The original battleground was the American university, where, as Bruce Bawer writes in The Victims’ Revolution: The Rise of Identity Politics and the Closing of the Liberal Mind,

The point [became] simply to “prove”—repetitively, endlessly—certain facile, reductive, and invariably left-wing points about the nature of power and oppression. In this new version of the humanities, all of Western civilization is not analyzed through the use of reason or judged according to aesthetic standards that have been developed over centuries; rather, it is viewed through prisms of race, class, and gender, and is hailed or condemned in accordance with certain political checklists.

Under the new leftist dispensation, the study of English became the application of critical and literary theory to disparate texts so as to uncover the hidden power relations they concealed. The study of history became the study of social history or “people’s history,” the record of Western Civilization’s oppression of various groups. And popping up everywhere were new departments of “studies”: African-American Studies, Women’s Studies, Queer Studies, Chicano Studies, Gender Studies, and so on. “What these radicals blandly call multiculturalism,” wrote Irving Kristol,

is as much a “war against the West” as Nazism and Stalinism ever were. Under the guise of multiculturalism, their ideas—whose radical substance often goes beyond the bounds of the political into sheer fantasy—are infiltrating our educational system at all levels.

This revolution in American universities was accomplished swiftly and largely outside the public eye. What little resistance the radicals met was vanquished with accusations of racism. It was not until the late 1980s, with Jesse Jackson’s presidential campaigns, the battle over the Stanford core curriculum, and the publication of Allan Bloom’s The Closing of the American Mind, that the rise of identity politics on campus and the idea of “political correctness” became a page one story. By that time, however, it was too late. Alumni, trustees, and parents had no recourse. The American university was irrevocably changed.

There have been liberal critics of identity politics through the years. In 1991, historian Arthur Schlesinger, Jr. published The Disuniting of America: Reflections on a Multicultural Society. Schlesinger noted that the Soviet Union had collapsed in a heap of warring nationalities and that the state of Yugoslavia was in the process of doing the same, and asked whether America would be next. Presenting America as a nation of nations, a shared national culture whose diverse citizenry is united behind principles of liberty and equal justice, Schlesinger quoted Jean de Crèvecoeur’s 1782 Letters from an American Farmer:

He is an American, who leaving behind him all his ancient prejudices and manners, receives new ones from the new mode of life he has embraced, the new government he obeys, and the new rank he holds. . . . Here individuals of all nations are melted into a new race of men.

In 2004, Harvard political scientist Samuel Huntington published Who Are We? Huntington examined the stunning immigration, both legal and illegal, from Mexico and argued that it was undermining longstanding notions of American national identity. America, Huntington said, has both a creed and a culture. The creed is formulated in the founding documents of our nation and in the speeches of Abraham Lincoln. The culture derives from the Anglo-Protestant settlers who first peopled North America. Huntington worried about a “hispanicization” of American culture.

This book was controversial, to say the least. Nor was it without weaknesses. It is hard for this descendant of Irish and Italian immigrants to accept the notion that America’s culture is monolithically Anglo-Protestant. Furthermore, Huntington tended to underestimate the importance of the creed in shaping the culture. But such criticism should not obscure the fundamental point: Huntington, a Democrat who advised Hubert Humphrey’s 1968 presidential campaign, shared the same concerns one finds today among Trump supporters about immigration’s effect on American society.

This year another liberal academic, Columbia humanities professor Mark Lilla, has taken up the banner. “Identity politics on the left,” he writes,

was at first about large classes of people . . . seeking to redress major historical wrongs by mobilizing and then working through our political institutions to secure their rights. But by the 1980s, it had given way to a pseudo-politics of self-regard and increasingly narrow, and exclusionary self-definition that is now cultivated in our colleges and universities. The main result has been to turn people back onto themselves, rather than turning them outward towards the wider world they share with others. It has left them unprepared to think about the common good in non-identity terms and what must be done practically to secure it—especially the hard and unglamorous task of persuading people very different from themselves to join a common effort.

Lilla exhorts Democrats to replace identity liberalism with civic liberalism in the mode of Franklin Roosevelt. That Lilla’s opponents wasted no time in labeling his argument as racist is a testament to how divided the Left is on this issue.

Despite these intellectual dissidents, the Democratic Party and liberal elites appear committed to the idea that multiculturalism and identity politics, combined with the changing demographics of America, will bring about an enduring Democratic national majority. The two victories of Barack Obama strengthened their assumptions and set the template for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign. Lilla notes, for example, that a visitor to Clinton’s website could open tabs related to ethnic, religious, and sexual minorities, but not one related to a shared vision of American community.

This approach has had catastrophic consequences for the Democratic Party. “The fatal conclusion the Clinton team made after the Michigan primary debacle,” Democratic pollster Stanley Greenberg writes, “was that she could not win white working-class voters, and that the ‘rising electorate’ would make up the difference. She finished her campaign with rallies in inner cities and university towns. Macomb [County, Michigan] got the message.”

But the Democrats’ theory behind support for identity politics rests on shaky assumptions. Liberal journalist John B. Judis, who helped originate the theory with his book The Emerging Democratic Majority, has recanted his thesis. “The U.S. census makes a critical assumption that undermines its predictions of a majority-nonwhite country,” he writes. “It projects that the same percentage of people who currently identify themselves as ‘Latino’ or ‘Asian’ will continue to claim those identities in future generations. In reality, that’s highly unlikely.”

Intermarriage and assimilation will affect immigrants from these groups just as they have affected other immigrant groups. What’s more, voting allegiances can change as newcomers are integrated into the majority. There is also the problem that, as Democrats become more closely identified with identity politics, non-minority voters may swing even more decisively to Republicans—continuing the trend we saw in 2016.

Democrats fooled themselves into thinking that identity politics won Obama his two terms when in fact precisely the opposite had occurred. Obama made his debut on the national stage in the summer of 2004, during the Democratic National Convention that nominated John Kerry for president. The only reason anyone remembers that convention is because of Obama’s keynote address, where he repudiated the division of American society and famously said, “There’s not a black America and white America and Latino America and Asian America; there’s the United States of America.” From the start, Obama’s appeal on the campaign trail was to the noblest and most unifying aspects of the American political tradition.

This didn’t last. Shortly before Obama was reelected, he gave an interview where he said his top priority in a second term would be immigration reform that included an amnesty for illegal immigrants. The reason, he explained, was that Hispanic turnout would win him victory. Here Obama was wrong. Targeted appeals to Hispanic and black voters did not win him reelection. What won him reelection were his attacks on Mitt Romney for not understanding the economic condition of working Americans.

The most significant and effective advertisement of the 2012 campaign was a testimonial from a factory worker who had been laid off during one of Romney’s corporate downsizings. What came to be known as the “coffin ad” drove a wedge between the Republican nominee and the voters on whom Republican victory depended. Four years later, when the Republicans nominated a very different sort of candidate, these voters switched allegiances and backed Donald Trump.

It is no accident that identity politics is most rampant today in the academy, in entertainment, in the media, in Silicon Valley, and in corporate boardrooms. Identity politics is a veneer over the class politics that truly defines our society, and education is the best prism through which to view class in America today. Higher levels of education are not only correlated with higher incomes and better life prospects, but also with a greater acceptance of the theories behind identity politics—including the idea, rejected last year by the voters of the rural Midwest, that they are the beneficiaries of white privilege.

The condescension of liberal elites toward the white working class, evangelical Christians, gun owners, and supporters of immigration control and cultural assimilation is as pronounced as it is repulsive. It is summed up in Hillary Clinton’s writing off of so many voters last year as belonging in a “basket of deplorables”—the converse of Mitt Romney’s similarly destructive class-based dismissal of the 47 percent of Americans who do not pay income taxes. (They don’t pay income taxes because they don’t make enough money to qualify.)

Liberals seem blind to the connection between the high levels of income inequality they criticize and what they would otherwise call the hegemonic discourse of identity politics. This is why Clinton’s comment that breaking up the big banks would do nothing for the minority groups at the base of her campaign was so revealing. It might not do anything for them as members of identity groups, but perhaps it would help them as workers and as citizens.

Ensconced in affluent city centers and tony suburbs, liberal elites tell themselves that identity politics will carry them to the progressive future of their dreams. They appear utterly unaware that the radical cultural transformation they support—not to mention the insulting, dismissive, and self-righteous way they meet opposition to their designs—is seen from outside their bubble as provocative.

As political analyst Sean Trende has written:

Consider that over the course of the past few years, Democrats and liberals have: booed the inclusion of God in their platform at the 2012 convention . . . endorsed a regulation that would allow transgendered students to use the bathroom and locker room corresponding to their identity; attempted to force small businesses to cover drugs they believe induce abortions; attempted to force nuns to provide contraceptive coverage; forced Brendan Eich to step down as chief executive officer of Mozilla due to his opposition to marriage equality; fined a small Christian bakery over $140,000 for refusing to bake a cake for a same-sex wedding; vigorously opposed a law in Indiana that would provide protections against similar regulations—despite having overwhelmingly supported similar laws when they protected Native American religious rights—and then scoured the Indiana countryside trying to find a business that would be affected by the law before settling upon a small pizza place in the middle of nowhere and harassing the owners.

We tend to view these stories as examples of the culture war. They are more than that: they are examples of a coastal, metropolitan, highly schooled upper class warring against the traditions and freedoms of a middle American, exurban and rural, lower-middle and working class with some or no college education. In short, examples of a privileged few attempting to impose their will on a recalcitrant majority.

Here is Democratic pollster Stanley Greenberg again:

Obama’s refrain [of building “ladders of opportunity” for those left behind in the economic recovery] was severely out of touch with what was happening to most Americans and the working class more broadly. In our research, “ladders of opportunity” fell far short of what real people were looking for. Incomes sagged after the financial crisis, pensions lost value, and many lost their housing wealth, while people faced dramatically rising costs for things that mattered—health care, education, housing, and child care. People faced vanishing geographic, economic, and social mobility. . . . At the same time, billionaires spent massively to  influence politicians and parked their money in the big cities whose dynamism drew in the best talent from the smaller towns and cities.

The result of this class conflict is an America in danger of coming apart. “Liberals must take seriously Americans’ yearning for social cohesion,” writes Peter Beinart in The Atlantic Monthly. But despite the efforts of liberals like Beinart and Lilla, the Left faces obstacles to stitching America back together. The wealthiest and most energetic segments of the Left are committed to multiculturalism on the one hand and transnationalism on the other. What is more, the Left rejects the natural rights theory of the American Founding at the core of our tradition.

What has traditionally held Americans together is the idea that each of us is made in the image of our Creator and endowed with certain unalienable rights. But not only that idea. We are also held together by the culture that emanates from the intermingling of dynamic peoples and unchanging principles. To combat identity politics, we must emphasize an American nationalism based on both a commitment to the ideals of the American Founding and a shared love of our national history and culture—a history and culture of individual freedom and religious pluralism, resistant to centralized authority and ever expanding into new frontiers and new possibilities.

The American people are united by our creed of freedom and equality, and also by our habits, our manners, our national language, our territorial integrity, our national symbols—such as the National Anthem, the Flag, and the Pledge of Allegiance—our civic traditions, and our national story. We should tell that story forthrightly and proudly; we should continue our traditions of local government and patriotic displays; we should guard the symbols of our heritage against attack; and we should recognize that the needs of our citizens take priority.

We should also remember the words of a great American nationalist, Abraham Lincoln, at the close of his First Inaugural Address:

We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battlefield and patriot grave to every living heart and hearthstone all over this broad land, will yet swell the chorus of the Union, when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.

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Who we are

In the 1950’s a man or a woman might ask their spouse innocently, do you know where the kids are?

In 2018 we seriously want to know if our kids know Croatia, where is it? or Tokyo for that matter.  Or, have they read the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution?

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603 acts of violence against Trump supporters

List of 603 acts of violence against Trump supporters.

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The war party

“We have to have total clarity about what we do, when it comes to everything — a woman’s right to choose, gay marriage … whether it’s about immigration, whether it’s about gun safety, whether it’s about climate … I think that we owe the American people to be there for them, for their financial security, respecting the dignity and worth of every person in our country, and if there’s some collateral damage for some others who do not share our view, well, so be it, but it shouldn’t be our original purpose.” ~ Nancy Pelosi
Here we have Nancy Pelosi, former Speaker of The U.S. House, now leader of the Democrat Party in the House, accepting collateral damage if needed to achieve her goals. As Speaker of the House, she was only second in line from the President to having her finger on the nuclear trigger.
The U.S. was led into all of the huge, hot wars of the 20th century by Democrats.
(a) WWI – Woodrow Wilson,
(b) WWII – FD Roosevelt,
(c) Korean War – Truman,
(d) Vietnam War – JFK/LBJ.
Why is that?
The war led by Republicans in 20th century was cold and dominated by negotiations and ended by Republican President Reagan. The Cold War Republicans were Eisenhower, Nixon ,Ford and Reagan.
The Cold War Democrats were Kennedy, Johnson and Carter. They built up US nuclear weapons capability and almost got us into all out nuclear war more than once. JFK and the Cuban missile crisis with Russia are well known. We had atomic bomb drills in all schools and bomb shelters in those scary days. Johnson and Carter were advised on national security by Zbignew Brzezinski, who was an advocate of Realpolitik, which is the epitome of the mentality of domination and the rule of ego.
In Realpolitik the definition of “world politics ultimately is always and necessarily a field of conflict among actors pursuing power.” Realpolitik is “based on the management of the pursuit, possession, and application of power.” In his book “The Grand Chessboard” Brzezinski writes “it is imperative that no Eurasian challenger should emerge capable of dominating Eurasia and thus also of challenging America’s global pre-eminence.”
For example, Brzezinski and Carter promoted an international arms and allies competition with Russia, notably and proudly claiming that they started the war between Russia and Afghanistan, and they fueled it with CIA-supplied weapons. Afghanistan was not the only place. Carter and Brzezinski’s power game is the reason Iran had an “Islamic Revolution” in 1979 and became a Russian ally, overthrowing 2,500 years of continuous Persian monarchy and the support of the U.S. The Iranian Revolution is a copy of the Russian Revolution. The people were played for fools. JFK took us to the brink of nuclear war with Russia…and JFK was assassinated by Lee Harvey Oswald. A former U.S. Marine radar operator, Oswald defected to the Soviet Union and became a Marxist.  He turned over to the Soviet the flight specifications for the secret U2 high speed, high altitude spy plane. That was the information that enabled Russia to shoot down Francis Gary Powers, ending the U2 program. How was Oswald allowed to return to the U.S. where he shot Kennedy?  These were gigantic ego trips.
Democrats/leftists cannot control their egos. Ruled by emotion, they are too quick to grab weapons and resort to violence. Like Nancy Pelosi and many more, they assume and always have assumed that the end goal justifies the means, which is exactly the justification communists used in Russia, China, Cambodia, and Vietnam to kill millions of their own people, willing to “sacrifice an entire generation to achieve their goal,” collateral damage.
The “mentality of domination and the rule of ego” are the end goal of the left, not Republicans, not conservatives, not even the far-right wing. The far right wants anarchy, wants government to leave them alone. Fascism is not right wing; that’s propaganda. Fascism is leftist, a form of socialism, control of the people and means of production by the government, more government not less. In reality, what are rigidly class-based societies like Europe, Russia, Iran, China, Islam, fascism, communism, “social justice” if not a mentality of domination and the rule of ego? When theory, rhetoric, and propaganda are removed from these structures, then there is nothing left but an oligarchy with a mentality of domination ruled by ego which subjugates the dependent people below them.
If you put your trust in Democrats, if you give them your vote, you are signing up for the war party. Kids, do you know where your draft cards are?


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Interstate corruption

Each state needs to pass a law requiring ALL political donations to candidates for political representation of their state and their citizens must originate from resident citizens of their state.

Then, during primaries, candidates for the office of President of the United States would provide audited documentation to confirm that donations to their political campaign originated from U.S. citizens. No law is really needed for that purpose. President Trump could set the standard for the 2020 election. Candidates who did not provide audited documentation would not survive the primaries.

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UN climate panic?

October 8, 2018: Professor Richard Lindzen said the UN IPCC report released this week had reduced the alleged tipping point from 2C to 1.5C because there had been no significant warming for 20 years. “Warming of any significance ceased about 20 years ago, and 2C warming was looking increasingly unlikely.” Professor Lindzen provided a lecture for the Global Warming Policy Foundation in London, England at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers. Lindzen is an “American atmospheric physicist known for his work in the dynamics of the middle atmosphere, atmospheric tides, and ozone photochemistry. He has published more than 200 scientific papers and books. From 1983 until his retirement in 2013, he was Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Meteorology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He was a lead author of Chapter 7, “Physical Climate Processes and Feedbacks,” of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Third Assessment Report on climate change.

Professor Lindzen is speaking to a non-technical audience and explains his terms well.

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Deleted all Robert De Niro, George Clooney and Ron Howard movies from my server.  Barbara Streisand was deleted in 2016, for the record.

Next?  Make my day.  I have been buying music and movies all of my almost 70 years.  My collection of music is 65 days of continously different music.  I will know what not to buy in the future.

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Everyone Is Smart, Except Trump (sic)

Great and true rant by Dov Fischer.  I endorse it completely.

Everyone Is Smart, Except Trump

It really is quite simple.  Everyone is smart except Donald J. Trump.  That’s why they all are billionaires and all got elected President.  Only Trump does not know what he is doing  Only Trump does not know how to negotiate with Vladimir Putin.  Anderson Cooper knows how to stand up to Putin.  The whole crowd at MSNBC does.  All the journalists do.

They could not stand up to Matt Lauer at NBC.  They could not stand up to Charlie Rose at CBS.  They could not stand up to Mark Halperin at NBC  Nor up to Leon Wieseltier at the New Republic, nor Jann Wenner at Rolling Stone, nor Michael Oreskes at NPR, at the New York Times, or at the Associated Press.  But — oh, wow! — can they ever stand up to Putin!  Only Trump is incapable of negotiating with the Russian tyrant.

Remember the four years when Anderson Cooper was President of the United States?  And before that — when the entire Washington Post editorial staff jointly were elected to be President?  Remember?  Neither do I

The Seedier Media never have negotiated life and death, not corporate life and death, and not human life and death.  They think they know how to negotiate, but they do not know how.  They go to a college, are told by peers that they are smart, get some good grades, proceed to a graduate degree in journalism, and get hired as analysts.  Now they are experts, ready to take on Putin and the Iranian Ayatollahs at age 30.

That is not the road to expertise in tough dealing.  The alternate road is that, along the way, maybe you get forced into some street fights.  Sometimes the other guy wins, and sometimes you beat the intestines out of him.  Then you deal with grown-ups as you mature, and you learn that people can be nasty, often after they smile and speak softly.  You get cheated a few times, played.  And you learn.  Maybe you become an attorney litigating multi-million-dollar case matters.  Say what you will about attorneys, but those years — not the years in law school, not the years drafting legal memoranda, but the years of meeting face-to-face and confronting opposing counsel — those years can teach a great deal.  They can teach how to transition from sweet, gentle, diplomatic negotiating to tough negotiating. At some point, with enough tough-nosed experience, you figure out Trump’s “The Art of the Deal” yourself.

Trump’s voters get him because not only is he we, but we are he.  We were not snowflaked-for-life by effete professors who themselves never had negotiated tough life-or-death serious deals.  Instead we live in the real world, and we know how that works  Not based on social science theories, not based on “conceptual negotiating models.”  But based on the people we have met over life and always will hate.  That worst boss we ever had.  The coworker who tried to sabotage us.  We know the sons of bums whom we survived, the dastardly types who are out there, and we learned from those experiences how to deal with them.  We won’t have John Kerry soothe us by having James Taylor sing “You’ve Got a Friend” carols.

The Bushes got us into all kinds of messes.  The first one killed the economic miracle that Reagan had fashioned.  The second one screwed up the Middle East, where Iraq and Iran beautifully were engaged in killing each other for years, and he got us mired into the middle of the muddle.  Clinton was too busy with Monica Lewinsky to protect us from Osama bin Laden when we had him in our sights. Hillary gave us Benghazi and more.  And Obama and Kerry gave us the Iran Deal, ISIS run amok, America in retreat.  All to the daily praise of a media who now attack Trump every minute of every day.

So let us understand a few things:
Negotiating with NATO

NATO is our friend.  They also rip off America.  They have been ripping us off forever.  We saved their butts — before there even was a NATO — in World War I.  They messed up, and 116,456 Americans had to die to save their butts.

Then they messed up again for the next two decades because West Europeans are effete and so obsessed with their class manners and their rules of savoir faire  and their socialist welfare states and their early retirements that they did not have the character to stand up to Hitler in the 1930s.  Peace in our time.  So they messed up, and we had to save their butts again.  And another 405,399 Americans died for them during World War II.  And then we had to rebuild them!  And we had to station our boys in Germany and all over their blood-stained continent.   So, hey, we love those guys.  We love NATO.

And yet they still rip us off.  We pay 4% of our gigantic gross domestic product to protect them, and they will not pay a lousy 2% of their GDP towards their own defense.  Is there a culture more penny-pinching-cheap-and-stingy than the fine constituents of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization?  These cheap baseborn prigs will not pay their fare.  They are too cheap.  They expect America to send boys to die for them in one world war, then another — hundreds of thousands — and then to pay for their NATO defense even a century later.  And then they have the temerity to cheat us further in trade

Long before Trump, they set up tariffs against us for so many things  If the average American knew how badly Europe has been ripping us off for decades with their tariffs, no one in this country would buy anything European again.  We would say, as a matter of self-respect and personal pride, “I no longer will buy anything but American, no matter what it costs.”

Every American President has complained about the cheating and imbalance — the NATO penny-pinching-cheapness, the tariff and trade imbalances.  In more recent years, the various Bushes complained about it.  Even Obama complained about it.  But they all did it so gently, so diplomatically.  They would deliver the sermon, just as the pastor predictably tells the church-goers on Sunday morning that he is against sin, and the Europeans would sit quietly and nod their heads — nodding from sleeping, not from agreeing — and then they would go back out and sin some more.  Another four years of America being suckered and snookered.  All they had to do was give Obama a Nobel Peace Prize his ninth month in office and let Kerry ride his bike around Paris.

So Trump did what any effective negotiator would do: he took note of past approaches to NATO and their failures, and correctly determined that the only way to get these penny-pinching-cheap baseborn prigs to pay their freight would be to bulldoze right into their faces, stare them right in their glazed eyes with cameras rolling, and tell them point-blank the equivalent of: “You are the cheapest penny-pinching, miserly, stingy, tightwadded skinflints ever.  And it is going to stop on my watch.  Whatever it takes from my end, you selfish, curmudgeonly cheap prigs, you are going to pay your fair share.  I am not being diplomatic.  I am being All-Business: either you start to pay or, wow, are you in for some surprises!  And you know what you read in the Fake News: I am crazy!  I am out of control!  So, lemme see.  I know: We will go to trade war!  How do you like that?  Maybe we even will pull all our troops out of Europe.  Hmmm.  Yeah, maybe.  Why not?  Sounds good.  Well, let’s see.”

So Trump stuffed it into their quiche-and-schnitzel ingesting faces.  And he convinced them — thanks to America’s Seedier Media who are the real secret to the “Legend That is Trump” — that he just might be crazy enough to go to trade war and to pull American boys home.  They knew that Clinton and Bush x 2 and Kerry and Hillary and Nobel Laureate Obama never would do it.  But they also know that Trump just might.  And if they think they are going to find comfort and moderating in his new advisers, John Bolton and Mike Pompeo, alongside him…. Nuh-uh.

So CNN and the Washington Post and all the Seedier Media attacked Trump for days: He is destroying the alliance!  He attacks our friends!

Baloney.  Obama was the one whom the Left Echo Chamber… Chamber… Chamber never called out for attacking our friends — Israel, Britain, so many others — while cozying up to Hugo Chavez, bowing to dictators, and dancing the tango for Raul Castro.  Trump is just the opposite: He knows who the friends are, and he wants to maintain and strengthen those friendships.  It is no different from a parent telling a 35-year-old son: “I have been supporting you for thirty-five years.  I put you through college by signing four years and $100,000 PLUS in Loans.  You graduated college fifteen years ago.  For fifteen years I have been asking you nicely to look for a job and to start contributing.  Instead, you sit home all day playing video games, texting your friends on a smartphone I pay for, and picking little fuzz balls out of your navel.  So, look, I love you.  You are my flesh and blood.  But if you are not employed and earning a paycheck — and contributing to the cost of this household — in six months, we are throwing you out of the house.”  That boy is NATO.  Trump is Dad.  And all of us have been signing for the PLUS Loans.

Negotiating with Putin

Putin is a bad guy  A really bad guy.  He is better than Lenin.  Better than Stalin, Khrushchev, Kosygin, Brezhnev, Pol Pot, Mao.  But he is a really bad guy.

Here’s the thing: Putin is a dictator.  He answers to no one.  He does whatever he wants.  If there arises an opponent, that guy dies.  Maybe the opponent gets poked with a poisoned umbrella.   Maybe he gets shot on the street.  Maybe the opponent is forced to watch Susan Rice interviews telling the world that Benghazi happened because of a YouTube video seen by nine derelicts in Berkeley and that Bowe Berghdal served with honor and distinction.  But, one way or another, the opponent dies.

Trump knows this about Putin. And here is what that means:
If you insult Putin in public, like by telling the news media just before or after meeting with him that he is the Butcher of Crimea, and he messed with our elections, and is an overall jerk — then you will get nothing behind closed doors from Putin.  Putin will decide “To heck with you, and to heck with the relationship we just forged.”  Putin will get even, will take intense personal revenge, even if it is bad for Russia — even if it is bad for Putin.  Because there are no institutional reins on him.

But if you go in public and tell everyone that Putin is a nice guy (y’know, just like Kim Jong Un) and that Putin intensely maintains that he did not mess with elections — not sweet little Putey Wutey (even though he obviously did) — then you next can maintain the momentum established beforehand in the private room.  You can proceed to remind Putin what you told                                         him privately: that this garbage has to stop —or else.  That if he messes in Syria, we will do “X.”  If he messes with our Iran boycott, we will do “Y.”  We will generate so much oil from hydraulic fracturing and from ANWR and from all our sources that we will glut the market — if not tomorrow, then a year from now.  We will send even more lethal offensive military weapons to Ukraine.  We can restore the promised shield to Eastern Europe that Obama withdrew.  And even if we cannot mess with Russian elections (because they have no elections), they do have computers — and, so help us, we will mess with their technology in a way they cannot imagine.  Trump knows from his advisers what we can do.  If he sweet-talks Putin in public — just Putin on the Ritz<— then everything that Trump has told Putin privately can be reinforced with action, and he even can wedge concessions because, against that background, Putin knows that no one will believe that he made any concessions.  Everyone is set to believe that Putin is getting whatever he wants, that Trump understands nothing.  So, in that setting, Putin can make concessions and still save face.

That is why Trump talks about him that way.  And that is the only possible way to do it when negotiating with a tyrant who has no checks and balances on him.  If you embarrass the tyrant publicly, then the tyrant never will make concessions because he will fear that people will say he was intimidated and backed down.  And that he never will do.  Meanwhile, Trump has expelled 60 Russians from America, reversed Obama policy and sent lethal weapons to Ukraine, and is pressing Germany severely on its pipeline project with Russia.

The Bottom Line

At the end of the day, Donald Trump is over seventy years old.  He has made many mistakes in his life.  He still makes some  He is human.  But Trump likewise has spent three score and a dozen years learning.  He has seen some of his businesses go bankrupt, and he has learned from those experiences to be a billionaire and not let it happen again.  No doubt that he has been fooled, outsmarted in years past.  And he has learned from life.

He is a tough and smart negotiator.  He sizes up his opponent, and he knows that the approach that works best for one is not the same as for another.  It does not matter what he says publicly about his negotiating opponent.  What matters is what results months later.

In his first eighteen months in Washington, this man has turned around the American economy, brought us near full employment, reduced the welfare and food stamp lines, wiped out ISIS in Raqqa, moved America’s Israel embassy to Jerusalem, successfully has launched massive deregulation of the economy, has opened oil exploration in ANWR, is rebuilding the military massively, has walked out of the useless Paris Climate Accords that were negotiated by America’s amateurs who always get snookered, canned the disastrous Iran Deal, exited the bogus United Nations Human Rights Council.  He has Canada and Mexico convinced he will walk out of NAFTA if they do not pony up, and he has the Europeans convinced he will walk out of NATO if they don’t stop being the cheap and lazy parasitic penny-pinchers they are.  He has slashed income taxes, expanded legal protections for college students falsely accused of crimes, has taken real steps to protect religious freedoms and liberties promised in the First Amendment, boldly has taken on the lyme-disease-quality of a legislative mess that he inherited from Reagan-Bush-Clinton-Bush-Obama on immigration, and has appointed a steady line of remarkably brilliant conservative federal judges to sit on the district courts, the circuit appellate courts, and the Supreme Court.

What has Anderson Cooper achieved during that period?  Jim Acosta or the editorial staffs of the New York Times and Washington Post?  They have not even found the courage and strength to stand up to the coworkers and celebrities within their orbits who abuse sexually or psychologically or emotionally.  They have no accomplishments to compare to his.  Just their effete opinions, all echoing each other, all echoing, echoing, echoing  They gave us eight years of Nobel Peace Laureate Obama negotiating with the ISIS JV team, calming the rise of the oceans, and healing the planet.

We will take Trump negotiating with Putin any day.

Bud’s P.S. I would be much harder on NATO than President Trump.  These are the people that most Americans fled, for generations, for hundreds of years.  If you want class warfare, that’s NATO and the EU.

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Woke? The politically correct social justice/collectivist/socialist/communist radicals, calling themselves “woke,” do not know or care a wit if they intrude on the lives of others. They preach that they care; it is a routine part of their rhetoric of political correctness. They don’t believe in your freedom of speech, only theirs. They don’t believe in innocence until proven guilty, unless one of theirs is on trial.
They are a relatively small group of people.
Their goal is an ideal off in the future, a fantasy utopia, which not even they may criticize or seriously examine without being thrown under the bus by their comrades. They disavow and destroy or ignore the history of previous attempts to achieve their ideal, they move on, they go forward, but they never look back and they never reach their moving target utopia. They cannot address questions of fact and history because doing so destroys their mindset/mental image. They truly believe that they have the best answer, the ideal, utopia, and that it is better than anything any other group has to offer, and therefore that requires them to do anything necessary to reach their goal, even killing an entire generation.
I believe Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn said that 90% of his communist comrades had been killed by his communist comrades, including the murders of almost the entire officer corps of the communist military before WWII, which then resulted in poor defenses of Russia against Hitler’s troops and millions of unnecessary Russian dead. Solzhenitsyn was a highly experienced and rewarded Bolshevik “Red Army” communist officer who dared to criticize Stalin’s policies. He criticized the failures of communist Soviet Union, was exiled to Stalin’s gulags in Siberia, but never gave up on communism.
Who are these “woke” people today? “So what does this group look like? Compared with the rest of the (nationally representative) polling sample, progressive activists are much more likely to be rich, highly educated—and white. They are nearly twice as likely as the average to make more than $100,000 a year. They are nearly three times as likely to have a postgraduate degree. And while 12 percent of the overall sample in the study is African American, only 3 percent of progressive activists are. With the exception of the small tribe of devoted conservatives, progressive activists are the most racially homogeneous group in the country.” (Reference at link below.)
Americans should not expect today’s social justice warriors to become rational, or to reform, or to give up their fantasy. On the contrary, they will become more violent. We are seeing that increasing violence now with Hillary (“you cannot be civil with a political party that wants to destroy what you stand for, what you care about”) Clinton, Nancy Pelosi, Michael Moore, Erik (“When they go low, we kick em. That’s what this new Democratic Party is about”) Holder, Ellison, Weinstein, and other media, academic, Hollywood and sports personalities.
Politically correct ‘woke’ social justice warriors take no prisoners; they create victims, piles of them. Democrats are becoming increasingly more violent, primarily due to the examples set by their leaders; they are calling for mob rule like the Ferguson riots in 2014. Don’t take their bait. Vote.
“Members have been attacked, shot, had home addresses (where their families live) posted online, been accosted during family dinners, and received every kind of death threat. It’s alarming to hear media minimize that as just “people who are upset.” ~ Senator Orrin Hatch, October 10, 2018 @senorrinhatch
Referring to the Washington Post: “Always interesting to see friends in the media focus on Republican reaction— not on a group overrunning police barricades to try and break down the doors of the Supreme Court, doxxing Senators, trying to storm a hearing, and physically blocking meetings.” ~ Senator Orrin Hatch, October 9, 2018 @senorrinhatch
“Those who want to take our money and gain power over us have discovered the magic formula: Get us envious or angry at others and we will surrender, in installments, not only our money but our freedom.” ~ Thomas Sowell.
Hat tip to Suzanne Chupp and John Crary
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The one party government

As I recall, Kavanaugh was employed by the G.W. Bush White House, not the justice department, when the Patriot Act was passed. And, for all practical purposes, at that time the U.S. was at war, the homeland had been attacked. In fact, in that war time circumstance, Congress could have given the President far, far more onerous executive powers …and those war powers would have been entirely Constitutional.

As I see it, the possible problem with Justice Kavanaugh’s legal positions was never examined in public by the U.S. Senate, and as judge Andrew Napolitano points out, our government in Washington is really only one party … the big government party …with two different populist wings.  The big government party works against citizens and in favor of oligarchy and political power, in favor of the rich folk who donate to elect politicians to the government party. 

That situation has not changed during my entire life. President Eisenhower warned of the power of the military industrial complex … but it has gotten much bigger and more powerful. Yes, the Patriot Act is a Constitutional crisis, as are the annual NDAA defense funding laws which continue authorizations for the onerous invasions occurring under  the Patriot Act.  Unfortunately, we may never know Justice Kavanaugh’s legal opinion on the authorities granted in these laws until and unless they are challenged and that challenge reaches SCOTUS. 

SCOTUS Justice David Souter, nominated by RINO President G.H.W. Bush, gave government and their crony real estate developers eminent domain … an obvious infringement of 4th amendment and the Constitution itself. Government is only authorized to control D.C. and necessary military bases and ports. Yet, eminent domain expanded that to any enterprise and property determined to be important for the collective. That SCOTUS ruling is exactly the opposite of individual liberty and the Constitution.

I hope the Patriot Act is repealed by a conservative Congress and annual NDAA’s are constrained by Congress to funding of the military, instead of controlling the people. I believe the first thing we must fight for is the transparency in government: stop the secrecy. Getting through that secrecy wall by court actions like FOIA is a monumental barrier to entry, barrier to the truth. Secrecy in government is a giant leap backwards to feudalism, which protects and enables oligarchy.

Never forget that Donald Trump is part of the oligarchy.

After repeal of the secrecy laws, next to go must be most of the Administrative Procedures Act, wherein Congress has unconstitutionally absolved itself of its constitutional duties by delegating most of them to the executive branch and its gigantic, inefficient, and self-protecting bureaucracy. And now, the courts support the bureaucracy by making mostly administrative law rulings under that act.

I understand this just completed Kavanaugh red meat circus as a frontal attack by the left on the most critical point of the Constitution and jurisprudence. That is, that a man or woman is considered innocent until proven otherwise. (Napoleonic code is the reverse case and still in practice outside the U.S.)  Stalin and George W. Bush and many others threw people in jail without due process.  Thankfully, after this recent public circus, most – but not all – of that fundamental right remains for citizens. As Roma Cox and Ben Swann and Judge Andrew Napolitano point out, our government never publicly examined the Kavanaugh rulings and opinions that would have/should have been important to citizens. In fact, according to the Senate Justice Committee, not one Democrat visited the room where Kavanaugh’s papers were on display for them. Citizens are NOT being served by our government.

Larkin Rose5


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