Last Chance Gate 2

So the light of reason has broken over Senator Ted Cruz. He has seen at last that Donald Trump MUST win the presidential election.

Any vote not cast for Trump helps Hillary Clinton into power. Another presidency of the Left will do all it can to change the demographic composition of America with the intention of creating a permanent Democratic-supporting electorate.

This election is very probably the last chance Americans – those who value the liberty their country was founded to preserve – will have to save themselves from the tyranny of full-blown socialism, the advance of Islam, the dissolution of the nation-state, the end of the rule of law, and a life that is collective, poor, nasty, brutish and short.

The enlightened Ted Cruz writes:

This election is unlike any other in our nation’s history. Like many other voters, I have struggled to determine the right course of action in this general election.

In Cleveland, I urged voters, “Please, don’t stay home in November. Stand, and speak, and vote your conscience, vote for candidates up and down the ticket whom you trust to defend our freedom and to be faithful to the Constitution.”

If “voting your conscience” means preserving your moral purity while your free nation crashes round you, you are making a vain and foolish choice. Your nice clean little conscience, brother, doesn’t matter a damn when your civilization is at stake. 

Fortunately, Cruz brought his conscience in line with political good sense.

After many months of careful consideration, of prayer and searching my own conscience, I have decided that on Election Day, I will vote for the Republican nominee, Donald Trump.

If Jesus advised him to vote for Trump, then Jesus has at last developed some degree of useful intelligence.

I’ve made this decision for two reasons. First, last year, I promised to support the Republican nominee. And I intend to keep my word.

Second, even though I have had areas of significant disagreement with our nominee, by any measure Hillary Clinton is wholly unacceptable — that’s why I have always been #NeverHillary.

Six key policy differences inform my decision.

First, and most important, the Supreme Court. For anyone concerned about the Bill of Rights — free speech, religious liberty, the Second Amendment — the Court hangs in the balance. I have spent my professional career fighting before the Court to defend the Constitution. We are only one justice away from losing our most basic rights, and the next president will appoint as many as four new justices. We know, without a doubt, that every Clinton appointee would be a left-wing ideologue. Trump, in contrast, has promised to appoint justices “in the mold of Scalia.”

For some time, I have been seeking greater specificity on this issue, and today the Trump campaign provided that, releasing a very strong list of potential Supreme Court nominees — including Sen. Mike Lee, who would make an extraordinary justice — and making an explicit commitment to nominate only from that list. This commitment matters, and it provides a serious reason for voters to choose to support Trump.

Second, Obamacare. The failed healthcare law is hurting millions of Americans. If Republicans hold Congress, leadership has committed to passing legislation repealing Obamacare. Clinton, we know beyond a shadow of doubt, would veto that legislation. Trump has said he would sign it.

Third, energy. Clinton would continue the Obama administration’s war on coal and relentless efforts to crush the oil and gas industry. Trump has said he will reduce regulations and allow the blossoming American energy renaissance to create millions of new high-paying jobs.

Fourth, immigration. Clinton would continue and even expand President Obama’s lawless executive amnesty. Trump has promised that he would revoke those illegal executive orders.

Fifth, national security. Clinton would continue the Obama administration’s willful blindness to radical Islamic terrorism. She would continue importing Middle Eastern refugees whom the FBI cannot vet to make sure they are not terrorists. Trump has promised to stop the deluge of unvetted refugees.

Sixth, Internet freedom. Clinton supports Obama’s plan to hand over control of the Internet to an international community of stakeholders, including Russia, China, and Iran. Just this week, Trump came out strongly against that plan, and in support of free speech online.

These are six vital issues where the candidates’ positions present a clear choice for the American people.

If Clinton wins, we know — with 100% certainty — that she would deliver on her left-wing promises, with devastating results for our country.

My conscience tells me I must do whatever I can to stop that.

We also have seen, over the past few weeks and months, a Trump campaign focusing more and more on freedom — including emphasizing school choice and the power of economic growth to lift African-Americans and Hispanics to prosperity.

Finally, after eight years of a lawless Obama administration, targeting and persecuting those disfavored by the administration, fidelity to the rule of law has never been more important.

The Supreme Court will be critical in preserving the rule of law. And, if the next administration fails to honor the Constitution and Bill of Rights, then I hope that Republicans and Democrats will stand united in protecting our fundamental liberties.

Hoping that Democrats will protect fundamental liberties is like hoping for rain in the Sahara desert.

Our country is in crisis.

Hillary Clinton is manifestly unfit to be president, and her policies would harm millions of Americans. And Donald Trump is the only thing standing in her way.

A year ago, I pledged to endorse the Republican nominee, and I am honoring that commitment. And if you don’t want to see a Hillary Clinton presidency, I encourage you to vote for him.

Bravo, Ted!

Hear him, all you obstinate conservatives and Republicans!

On November 8 you will pass through Last Chance Gate. Go through it and turn Right.

If you turn Left, the next gate is the one displaying the immutable instruction: “Abandon hope all ye who enter here.”

Posted under liberty, tyranny, United States by Jillian Becker on Saturday, September 24, 2016

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An equal and opposite reaction 2

Newton’s Third Law of Motion states: For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.

The Left in power has been brutal. Throughout the West, in government, in the media, in the academy, in the law courts, in society generally, wherever the Left is dominant, it is aggressive, dishonest, unjust, discriminatory, uncivilized. It is dour, it is harsh, it is smug, it is solemn, and with all that it is also boring.

The unmannerly Left has given rise to the unmannerly Alt Right.

These are extracts from a speech by Milo Yiannopoulos, telling the clucking old women of both sexes and all ages who want to get rid of the mocking Alt Right what they must do to achieve that end:

Now, various media and political figures have tried to define the alt-right, with varying degrees of accuracy, over the past few weeks. Which is to say no accuracy at all.

Hillary Clinton, just before reading out some of my headlines, called the alt-right an “emerging racist ideology”. Of course, she also constantly hallucinates about a “vast right wing conspiracy” …

According to Vox, the alt-right is “a movement lurking in Reddit and 4chan threads and in community blogs and forums, a movement of right-wingers who openly argue that democracy is a joke”.

This is typically nonsensical bilge from Vox, given that the alt-right were also apparently responsible for the outcome of the Brexit referendum.

Salon is more succinct. “The alt-right, also known as white nationalism.” …

Almost everything you read about the alt-right is wrong. It isn’t just white nationalists. … And the movement certainly isn’t led by me — although the media seems determined to crown me its queen. …

Just to be clear, I don’t consider myself a member of the alt-right. …

Of course, to the mainstream media, reporting accurately on the alt-right, and understanding the movement’s nuances instead of just shrieking “RACISTS”, is tantamount to leading the movement. …

Yes … there are racists in the alt-right — but the movement is much bigger than just them.

The left’s motivations in branding the alt-right as skinheads with Twitter accounts are easier to understand when you realize that the left is responsible for creating it in the first place, as I’ll explain in a moment.

The problem is, they’re smearing an entire political generation as racist, and they don’t care who gets hurt in the process.

The inability of the establishment right to decipher the movement is slightly different — they just don’t get it. I don’t think any of the people at National Review are bad people — they just don’t understand what they’re seeing. They don’t get cultural politics, they don’t get Millennial politics, and thus they don’t get the alt-right. The only tools they have to understand the movement are those handed to them by the political left. …

The media desperately wants to define the alt-right by the worst 5 percent of its members. They take the genuinely anti-semitic racists  …  and use them to define the whole movement. The left is obsessed by white supremacy, which in reality makes up an infinitesimally small number of people.

I see two primary motivating factors behind the rise of the alt right.

The first is a millennial generation that’s fed up with identity politics and its hypocrisies.

I see old-school conservatives who have had enough of mainstream politicians ignoring their concerns about immigration and cultural politics. I see intellectuals desperate to discuss dangerous, forbidden ideas as the left tries to make the overton window narrower and narrower.

And millennials are proving phenomenally talented at converting their parents, who might be disaffected republicans or tea partiers with Alt-Right thinking. …

The second is anti-white racism.

Progressives in America today believe that you can’t be racist unless you’re white, or unless you have what they call “prejudice plus power”. This argument, dreamed up in gender and African studies departments, does nothing more than give people an excuse to attack others for their gender, their sexual orientation, or the color of their skin, in the same way that eugenics gave people an excuse to view others as subhuman nearly a century ago.

Ironically so-called white privilege is the privilege to be discriminated against.

The idea that women and minorities, who have advocates for their special status in every university, every political party, and every media organization don’t have power behind their prejudices is also, frankly, absurd.

Racism is everywhere in America today. So is sexism. It’s in our university faculties.

But it’s not the racism you think.

It’s on the pages of the Washington Post. It’s on the pages of The Guardian. It’s in Hollywood. It’s on MSNBC.

Let me read you some statements which highlight the sort of casual racism and sexism that is deemed acceptable by the establishment today.

“The Beginning Of The End For Angry White Males.”

“Feminists Don’t Hate Men, But It Wouldn’t Matter If We Did.”

“When Whites Just Don’t Get It”

“As A White Man, I’m Surprised More Women Aren’t Tweeting The Hashtag #KillAllWhiteMen”

“Women Should Speak First In Class, Says SMU Professor. Really, Do Men Have To Speak At All?”

These are headlines from The Guardian, The New York Times, The Independent, The National Post, and the Chicago Tribune.

The key question behind all this is: are we going to have identity politics for everyone, or identity politics for no-one?

At the moment, we have identity politics for everyone except white men. If you advocate for men’s issues, The Guardian will call you a misogynist and a sexist. If you advocate for whites, The Guardian and National Review, and everyone else will call you a racist.

Meanwhile, other groups – women, gays, blacks, Muslims – are not only allowed to advocate for their group’s interests, but allowed to be openly racist and sexist towards white men.

When they do so, they receive support from the Silicon Valley’s tech giants, who manage an increasing share of our lives. When a parody group called the Feminist Software Foundation tried to create a browser extension that took all instances of “white men” in articles and changed them to “Jews” — making Guardian articles read like Mein Kampf — the extension was banned from both Chrome and Firefox.

Not for antisemitism, you understand. But for showing the Left up as racists.

I’d prefer we had no identity politics at all and that we judged people, as someone once said, not by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. But if you’re going to have identity politics, you have to have them for everybody.

You might not like the result.

The younger, millennial members of the alt-right are, for the most part, not white nationalists. But they’re being pushed toward racial humor by the progressive left.

The left is responsible for me. The left is responsible for the rise of Donald Trump. The left created the alt-right.

If you’re on the Left, and you’re looking out at the alt-right with horror, and want to destroy it, guess what? You probably can.

Here’s the bad news: your current tactics aren’t working, and are in fact having the opposite of their intended effect. Name-calling, public shaming, and tearing your hair out over Pepe the Frog* is simply ineffective and is enlarging the ranks of the troll army every day you continue to do it.

Here’s the good news: there are a few simple things you can do to nuke the movement.

I’m happy to tell you what they are, because I know you’re not going to do any of them.

But I want to you to listen, because I want you to understand how your actions created this phenomenon.

The first thing you have to do is stop being hypocrites.

Double standards are everywhere in coverage of the alt-right. Whenever confronted with a left wing or minority- radical movement, the Establishment will wring its hand about addressing the “root causes”. But they accuse anyone who does the same for the alt-right as necessarily endorsing the worst of its proponents.

Just look at the media’s coverage of Black Lives Matter, and how it gives a pass to horrifying behavior, behavior that goes far beyond what the alt-right does on Twitter. Oh, someone with an anime avatar tweeted a racial caricature at you? That’s nice — Black Lives Matter has killed police officers.

And they’re still being championed by the mainstream press. Is it any wonder that people sympathize with the alt-right, when they’re at the losing end of such a blatant double standard?

And again you push older people to the alt-right. Who do you think stopped giving millions of dollars to Mizzou following their Black Lives Matter protests? Here is a hint — it wasn’t jobless gender studies majors, or young engineers whose job was replaced by an H-1B visa holder, it was established donors ranging in age from 40-65.

It’s double standards that are at least in part fuelling the alt-right, and not Donald Trump. If you think the alt-right is going to evaporate with the God Emperor, think again.

The genie is not going back in the bottle. And I don’t care if I just appropriated the culture of some Arab country by saying that, or infringed on a Disney company trademark for that matter.

Here’s one for Hillary Clinton: you gotta stop calling half the country racists.

Establishment columnists argue that responding to racism with racism is wrong, but this is an oversimplification of what’s going on with the alt-right. …

The millennials in particular are simply responding to real racism with trolling, as a means to expose the double standard. When the double standard disappears, I expect this “performative racism” if you like, will too.

Performative racism doesn’t mean racism-lite. It means memes. It means jokes. It means 19 year old boys saying stuff to get a reaction. …

What I do see is a lot of young people trying to get a reaction. That’s the Troll Manifesto: find something that a person in power is sensitive about, rightly or wrongly, and joke about it relentlessly until they acknowledge you. …

People ask why the alt right has to be so mean and why I make mean remarks about people.

Because it’s fun! And progressives made it fun by finger wagging.

The Left has demonized and censored people who speak about taboo issues respectfully and seriously. … If you’re going to get ostracized for having un-PC views no matter how you present them, why not be an asshole about it?

To stop the mayhem, the establishment needs to do one very simple thing: stop punishing people for jokes. Stop punishing people for ideas. And stop other people from doing so as well. The bigger of a taboo you make something, the more attractive it is for young pranksters.

I’m going to read out a quote from early alt-right intellectual, the Jewish entrepreneur and writer Curtis Yarvin:

“If you spend 75 years building a pseudo-religion around anything – an ethnic group, a plaster saint, sexual chastity or the Flying Spaghetti Monster – don’t be surprised when clever 19-year-olds discover that insulting it is now the funniest thing in the world. Because it is”

The establishment has done exactly that. They’ve built a religion around left-wing identity politics, complete with blasphemous words and excommunication. And, surprise surprise, shattering those quasi-religious taboos has become hilarious for a huge section of the youth.

The thing I most hate about the Left is that they want to stop us laughing – to prescribe which jokes are okay and which are not okay to make in public and to draw artificial lines around certain subjects. I find all sorts of inappropriate things funny. Islam, trannies, AIDS.

These are all innately hilarious things. Now and again I even enjoy a good rape joke — especially if I’m the butt of it. Telling me I’m not allowed to laugh at something does not make it unfunny. …

Sir Tim Hunt, a British chemist … was working on the cure for cancer before he abruptly became the target of a feminist sting operation.

They deliberately and maliciously took a section of his speech to a room of female South Korean scientists out of context, in which he jokes about women in laboratories “falling in love and crying all the time”. The comment was meant to mock outdated sexist attitudes, but it was presented by feminists as a serious claim on the part of Tim Hunt.

The lie was swallowed by the academic establishment, which forced Hunt to resign from his position at University College London. It took months and months of relentless efforts from conservatives and moderates to clear his name. ..,

There are countless others.  … There was also Razib Khan, a geneticist who lost an opportunity at the New York Times over his views on human biodiversity, and now writes for the alt-right Unz Review.

These are the people being driven into the arms of the alt-right by the excesses of the left.

As well as jokes, there’s something else that establishment elites need to stop demonizing as racism: national pride. During the 2015 election in England, a left-wing candidate for parliament called people who fly the English flag “simpletons and casual racists”. And this is nothing compared to some of the things said by university academics about displays of national pride.

The globalist elites, who assemble in places like Dubai, Davos, and whatever unfortunate country hosts the Bilderberg Conference, don’t have a nation.

Whether they’re from Istanbul, London, or Beijing, global elites tend to dress the same, act the same, talk the same, and think the same. They look at what’s different and unique about their home countries, and squirm in embarrassment.

We don’t.

If you want to draw people away from the alt-right, this has to stop. If you want to identify with the jet setting, cosmopolitan, nationless elite, that’s fine. I like being rich and powerful too.

But stop looking down on people who want to stay true to their roots, and remember the national values and traditions that made our progressive, globalized civilization possible. Because for every national flag you take down to replace it with the faceless and sinister logo of the European Union, the International Olympics Committee or the United Nations, ten more will fly upwards in protest.

This is what and who we are.

Leftists will insist that racism underpins national pride, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. Most members of the alt-right, even the serious ones, will agree that they want everyone to have national pride, not just western countries.

And they’re right — the instinct for belonging, for a sense of common identity, is universal. The global elite’s foolish quest to suppress this instinct is one of the reasons why the alt right, as well as the populist nationalist right, have gained so much ground so quickly.

Millennials have grasped an issue that the globalists have been ignoring for a long time: that immigrants should come to America from hellholes to better their family, not to turn America into the hellholes they fled from.

If there’s one thing that fuels anti-establishment sensibilities of all kinds, it’s the idea that the truth is being suppressed.

Sometimes the alt-right gets accused of flirting with conspiracy theories. Sometimes they do, mostly with a nod and a wink.

But other times they are right to be suspicious.

Straight white men have been lied to and lied about in this country for decades, whether it’s the wage gap myth or the hysterical witch hunts and kangaroo courts on campuses that police sexual misunderstandings between horny teenagers.

The politically correct establishment suppresses the facts.

Just look at the way the media behaves after a terrorist attack. Witness the desperation with which they avoid mentioning the name and backgrounds of the attackers, who are nearly universally Islamic. That’s if they can be bothered to interrupt an Obama speech to cover terrorist attacks in the first place.

America just suffered three terror attacks in 12 hours this weekend. Hillary couldn’t decide if it was a bombing, Bill de Blasio wouldn’t call it terrorism, and no one other than right-wingers were willing to label it “Islam”. Once again, everyone but the right look ridiculous.

Meanwhile, these are the same people who call white men racists and rapists without any evidence. …

And, of course there are those truths that are increasingly impossible to ignore. Like the fact that all cultures are not equal. Some are homophobic, anti-semitic. Some, as the German city of Cologne and the English town of Rotherham tragically found out, are rape cultures. And unlike college fraternities, it’s actually real this time.

I am of course referring to the fact of Muslim culture, which as it stands today is utterly incompatible with western liberal values. It amazes me that so many otherwise-sound libertarians and conservatives fail to grasp this simple fact, or brand it racist.

If you want to preserve capitalism, it’s probably unwise to let a million hardline bolsheviks into your communities. Likewise, if you want to preserve what the Left claims are the best things about western culture — tolerance, women’s rights, gay rights, religious freedom — it’s time to close the door on Muslim immigration. There is no gray area.

Everyone’s heard the old cliche: when you attempt to suppress something, you drive it underground. Well it’s true. But it’s even worse when you drive talented, skilled people underground. Because then they find each other. And they start building a rebel army. Everyone fired from their jobs, or suspended from their university, or kicked off social media becomes another soldier in their ranks.

The alt-right is a cultural rebel army. …

The good news is, the alt-right in its broadest definition isn’t in fact to any degree traditional white nationalist …

A huge proportion of the alt-right today are millennials, ranging from teenagers up to the younger members of Generation X. Primarily white, but also consisting of increasing numbers of minorities. Jews fed up with the pro-Islam attitudes of elites. Asians who are now being penalized by affirmative action. Black groups like the Hoteps, fed up with Black Lives Matter.

These aren’t white nationalists — they’re drawn to the alt-right because of the hypocrisies of identity politics, and by the joy breaking the rigid taboos of the establishment. …

White males are responsible for everything that the left have advocated for in the past: gay rights, women’s rights, civil rights, tolerance, the abolition of slavery, the establishment of the welfare state, and so on and so on.

They are right to be confused at being named Satan by the progressive left. …

I’m under no illusions that the left will abandon what have become some of its core operating principles. … What motivates the left now is anti-white hatred, particularly of straight men. …

“Systemic racism and “white privilege” are bullshit, unfalsifiable and bonkers pseudoscientific concepts designed to disempower white men in the societies and civilization they’re primarily responsible for creating.

Unless the left abandons this insane hatred – and as I say, I doubt they will – the alt right will continue to grow, and in the future we can expect to hear more and more about the horrors of cartoon frogs*.

 

*See the Wikipedia entry on Pepe the Frog. Extract: “The campaign website for Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton released an article stating that Pepe was associated with white nationalism.”

Posted under Anti-Semitism, Commentary, Conservatism, education, Ethics, Feminism, Humor, immigration, Islam, Leftism, liberty, Muslims, nationalism, Race, Sex by Jillian Becker on Tuesday, September 20, 2016

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A reach for democracy and secular law 9

A nationwide curfew was imposed as a section of the armed forces claimed to have taken the country over. The coup leaders seized national television and the phone network. Gunfire was heard in Ankara and military jets flew low over Ankara and Istanbul where the bridges over the Bosphorus were blocked. In Istanbul, Turkish Gendarmerie and soldiers blocked entrances to bridges over the Bosphorus while tanks blocked Ataturk airport. A TV announcer read out a statement saying that a “peace committee” had taken over the country against autocratic rule and will write a new constitution restoring democracy, whose institutions have been eroded by autocratic rule, and restore secular law.

It was a great aim, a brave attempt – but it failed.

Now Turkey is less likely to be secular and democratic. 

DebkaFile, which we quoted above, assesses the event and analyses why the attempted coup failed:

The Turkish armed forces’ attempt to overthrow the authoritarian rule of President Tayyip Erdogan was largely extinguished Saturday morning July 16 after less than 24 hours – due to three major miscalculations:

1. They first seized the country’s power centers and state television when their first priority should have been to immobilize Erdogan who was out of the capital on vacation.

2. Although out of control in Ankara and Istanbul, he used his mobile phone to reassert his authority through a private television station and called on the people to take to the streets in protest against the plotters. Civilians responded by surrounding the tanks and tying them down until loyal troops moved in.

3. They relied too heavily on the air force to cow the regime, the jets zooming low over the two main cities while the two main airports were closed.

It was soon evident that control of Turkey’s skies was no guarantee of control of the ground. Indeed, the coup leaders did not prevent him from landing at Ataturk airport and declaring immediately that he was in charge, demonstrating that he was on top of events.

In the clashes that followed, Gen. Umit Dundar, the newly appointed acting chief of the general staff, said more than 190 people died in clashes: 41 police officers, two soldiers, 47 civilians and 104 people described as ‘‘coup plotters”. Dundar said officers from the Air Force, the military police and the armored units were mainly involved in the attempt.

At the same, the attempt by part of the Turkish armed forces to topple Erdogan in the name of democracy and the return of “secular law” was impressive and evidence of social and political malaise under his rule. It was led by at least half a dozen generals, as may be judged the arrest of Gen. Memduh Hakbilen, the chief of staff of Turkey’s command for the important Aegean region, among the more than 1,500 alleged plotters and the suspension of another five generals.

That elements of the air force joined the attempted uprising is unprecedented in Turkey, whose army is NATO’s second largest.

Erdogan will no doubt want to know why his MIT intelligence failed to scent the conspiracy afoot.

He will certainly lose no time in executing a massive purge of Turkey’s armed forces, and especially the air force and intelligence arms, after accusing the coup leaders of treason.

Erdogan has been steadily taking steps to re-create an Islamic state. He wants to reverse the modernizing reforms that Kemal Ataturk effected after Turkey, as an ally of Germany, was defeated in the First World War. He dreams of reviving the Ottoman Empire, perhaps seeing himself as Sultan (who was also titled Caliph). He has built himself a new palace in Ankara, and announced that it will be the center of government.

Predictably, President Obama is on the side of the would-be dictator against the side that reached for democracy. 

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Erdogan’s new presidential palace in Ankara

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President Erdogan in his new palace

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President Erdogan among guards dressed in the uniforms of Ottoman soldiers

The glorious burden of freedom 0

We very much like Daniel Greenfield’s Independence Day column at Front Page. From which we quote:

Independence Day is a commemoration, but it is not a mere commemoration. The struggle is not over. …

It is not our capacity for obedience that makes us true Americans, but our capacity for disobedience. …

The Declaration of Independence and the Constitution were acts of rebellion against the entire order across what was then seen as the civilized world.

American greatness came about because we were willing to break the rules. It was only when we began following the rules, when as a nation we made the maintenance of the international order into our notion of the greatest good and when as individuals we accepted the endless expansion of government as a national ideal that we ceased to be great.

When we think of great Americans, from Thomas Jefferson to the Wright Brothers, from Andrew Jackson to Daniel Boone, from Theodore Roosevelt to today’s true patriots, we think of “damned rebels” who broke the rules, who did what should have been impossible and thumbed their noses at the establishments of the day. American greatness is embodied in individual initiative. That is why the Declaration of Independence places at the center of its striving, Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.

It was for these individualistic ends of freedom that government had to be derived from the consent of the governed, that a war was fought that changed the world and it is these ends that we must celebrate.

Rebellion does not always mean muskets and cannon. Long before the War of Independence, we had become a nation of rebels who explored the wild realms of forests and streams, who forged cities out of savage lands, who argued philosophy and sought a higher purpose for their strivings, who refused to bow to their betters out of an accident of birth. And at our best, we are still rebels today.

When we dissent from the system, we rebel. When we refuse to conform, when we think differently, when we choose to live our own lives instead of living according to the dictates of our political rulers and pop culture arbiters, then we are celebrating the spirit of freedom that animates the Fourth.

When we defy the government, when we speak out against Obama and the rest of our privileged ruling class, when we demand the right to govern ourselves, when we fight to hold government accountable, when we question what we are told and the need to be told anything at all, then we are keeping that old spirit of rebellion alive.

We are still fighting for our independence from government every day and every year that we choose to live as free people.

That is the glorious burden of freedom.

Freedom is not handed to us. It is not secured for us by politicians. Like the Founding Fathers, we are made free by our fight for freedom. Preserving their legacy cannot be meaningfully recreated through any means other than the committed struggle for the same ideals.

This Fourth of July, celebrate by continuing to be a rebel, question and challenge the left’s worship of government. And don’t stop on the Fifth or in July. Or in any year or any decade or any century.

Posted under Commentary, liberty, United States by Jillian Becker on Monday, July 4, 2016

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Trump on the triumph of Brexit 11

Donald Trump’s statement on Britain’s EU referendum:

The people of the United Kingdom have exercised the sacred right of all free peoples.

They have declared their independence from the European Union, and have voted to reassert control over their own politics, borders and economy.

A Trump Administration pledges to strengthen our ties with a free and independent Britain, deepening our bonds in commerce, culture and mutual defense.

The whole world is more peaceful and stable when our two countries – and our two peoples – are united together, as they will be under a Trump Administration.

Come November, the American people will have the chance to re-declare their independence.

Americans will have a chance to vote for trade, immigration and foreign policies that put our citizens first.

They will have the chance to reject today’s rule by the global elite, and to embrace real change that delivers a government of, by and for the people.

I hope America is watching, it will soon be time to believe in America again.

Posted under America, Britain, Commentary, Europe, immigration, liberty, United Kingdom, United States by Jillian Becker on Friday, June 24, 2016

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In defense of hate speech 23

Islam does its utmost to make us infidels afraid of it – and then complains of our “Islamophobia”, our (irrational!) fear of Islam. If we do not fear it, we haven’t been paying attention. We are wise to fear it. We are wise to hate it. It is an evil creed.

Still, it ought not to be silenced by law.

We quote from our post, It’s better to be free to hate than to be free of hatred (April 30, 2014):

When Britain was a free country (ah, yes, I remember it well!), you could insult anyone as much as you pleased short of slander (such as accusing him of a crime). It was called “common abuse”, and there was no law against it. Nor should there have been. Now, in Britain, it’s okay for you to insult white males as much as you like. And Jews. If you insult them loudly and often enough you may get a grant to do it professionally. But if you insult Muslims you will be arrested and charged with a “hate crime”.

It should not be the business of the law to monitor and censure personal opinion.

It is precisely when someone says something you don’t agree with – something you consider stupid, abominable, ugly, offensive, wrong – that you must uphold his right to say it. Argue with him, call him a cretin and a villain; despise him, hate him But do not call for him to be gagged.

Allowing people to say what you don’t like and don’t agree with is the whole point of constitutionally guaranteeing free speech.

The idea of “hate crime” is at the root of this nonsense. Nobody can know what another person feels. If a person  commits a crime, punish him for the crime, not  for the supposed emotion behind it. Such an arrogantly puritanical concept as “hate crime” was  bound to distort the law and threaten liberty. As it does. …

People must be free to be petty, to be prejudiced, to be malicious, to be insulting. They cannot be stopped by the law. To make a law against bad behavior won’t change it, and can only make a mockery of the rule of law itself.

Now that vast bureaucratic tyranny, the European Union, decrees that what it judges to be expression of hate on the social media is to be illegal, and punishable.

Although it insists that “freedom of expression is a core European value which must be preserved”, it also insists that if you say something it doesn’t like, you must be gagged and punished. And it is co-opting “social media platforms” to assist in its policy of repression:

The Framework Decision on Combatting Racism and Xenophobia criminalises the public incitement to violence or hatred directed against a group of persons or a member of such a group defined by reference to race, colour, religion, descent or national or ethnic origin. This is the legal basis for defining illegal online content. …

In order to prevent the spread of illegal hate speech, it is essential to ensure that relevant national laws transposing the Council Framework Decision on combating racism and xenophobia are fully enforced by Member States in the online as well as in the offline environment. While the effective application of provisions criminalising hate speech is dependent on a robust system of enforcement of criminal law sanctions against the individual perpetrators of hate speech, this work must be complemented with actions geared at ensuring that illegal hate speech online is expeditiously reviewed by online intermediaries and social media platforms … [Our emphasis]

The real, unspoken, pathetic purpose of the ruling is to protect Islam from criticism. It is not likely that a Muslim will be censored, let alone prosecuted, for publishing such typical statements as these:

“The Jihad for Allah is the way of the truth and the way for salvation and the way which will lead us to crush the Jews.”  (Yasser Ghalban, Hamas leader, in 2006.)

“The Jews deserved their annihilation by Hitler.” (Dr Wafa Musa, psychologist, in 2009.)

“Jews are bacteria, not human beings.” – (Al Aqsa TV, Deputy Minister of Religious Endowments, Abdallah Jarbu, in 2010), and “The Jews are the most despicable and contemptible nation to crawl upon the face of the earth.” (‘Atallah Abu al-Subh, in 2011.)

And (we repeat), nor should they be censored or prosecuted! Indeed, it would be an excellent thing if the media of every kind displayed such statements prominently as often as they were made (which is every day). Muslims might be pleased at first. But after a while the effect on public opinion could be to provoke contempt and hatred of Islam. And then they’d raise their habitual noisy and violent objections, calling the display of their own words a manifestation of “Islamophobia”, of course.

The following comes from an article at Spiked, by its editor, Brendan O’Neill:

Hatred is an emotion, and the state has no business policing emotion.

“The internet is a place for free speech, not hate speech.” This spectacularly Orwellian comment was made last week by EU commissioner Vĕra Jourová, as she unveiled a new EU code to tackle hatred on the internet. Following three or four years of agitation by officials, politicians, hacks and feminists, all of whom insist that hateful “trolling” online is turning the internet into a cesspool of foul ideas and rotten comments, the EU has decided to take action. It has got web giants YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and Microsoft to sign a promise that they will hunt down and extinguish illegal hateful commentary, especially racist and xenophobic comments.

Which is to say, they will “hunt down and extinguish” criticism of Islam, warnings of its jihad, objection to the spread of its cruel sharia law – as some have already started doing with zeal.

Some have responded to the new code by asking if it represents overreach. There’s a danger, they say, that angry speech, or just zany speech, will be swept up in the clampdown on hate speech. This will no doubt happen. But we should take our critique of this new code, and of 21st-century censorship more broadly, a step further. We shouldn’t only say “relatively normal speech might be destroyed alongside hate speech” — we should call into question the whole idea of “hate speech”. The category of hate speech is as ridiculous, and abominable, as the idea of thoughtcrime. It represents the criminalisation, not only of racism and xenophobia — which would be bad enough — but of certain ideas, moralities and beliefs. We should bristle and balk as much at the idea of “hate speech” as we do at the idea of thoughtcrime.

Hate-speech codes are an ideological tool disguised as a force for moral good. Consider the recent history of the idea of hate speech … After the Second World War, the keenest proponents of controls on “hate speech” were the Soviets. There were various international gatherings in the 1940s and 50s to hammer out postwar international treaties, and at these the Soviets pushed for a global commitment to repressing “hate speech”, in particular far-right speech. They wanted stipulations against “hatred” and “incitement to hatred”. Amazingly, the West resisted. Eleanor Roosevelt represented the Western powers at some of these debates. She argued that it would be “extremely dangerous” to outlaw hate speech, since “any criticism of public or religious authorities might all too easily be described as incitement to hatred”. Indeed.

Eventually, the Soviets won out. In 1965, the UN Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Racial Discrimination was adopted, and it included a proposal to criminalise “ideas based on racial superiority”. The keyword here was ideas. From the outset, treaties and laws against hate speech were about controlling ideas: obnoxious ideas, yes, but ideas nonetheless. It was clear very early on that the category of hate speech was an ideological tool for the repression of bad ideas, of certain convictions. Post-1965, Western countries introduced into their national laws this new commitment to repressing ideas based on racial thinking.

What’s more, the category of hate speech is an extremely elastic tool for the repression of ideas. It has spread from curtailing ideas of racial superiority to suppressing expressions of religious hatred. Some Scandinavian countries want to outlaw misogynistic speech. On campuses there are clampdowns on transphobic speech. Anyone who says that a person with a penis is a man can now be branded a “hate speaker” and find himself No Platformed. So even saying ‘men are men and women are women’ has been encapsulated in the ideological category of hate speech.

Normal, widely held beliefs are casually rebranded “hatred”. Criticise religion too harshly and you’ll be accused of religious hatred; oppose gay marriage and you’re homophobic; doubt gender dysphoria and you’re a “transphobe”. Shouting “that’s hatred!” has become the preferred means for suppressing beliefs we find difficult or uncomfortable. That’s thanks to hate-speech laws. They have sanctioned this rush to rebrand beliefs as hate and to try to crush them. Once you accept that some ideas are beyond the pale … then ultimately no idea is safe

Under the banner of tackling “hate speech”, people are being punished for their moral convictions. … We should feel as angry about state restrictions on hate speech today as we would have done about the Soviet Union’s arrest of political dissidents 40 years ago, because in both cases the same thing is happening: people are punished, not for anything they’ve done, but for what they think.

Hatred is an emotion. … And when we allow figures of authority to control emotion, to fine people for their emotions, to imprison people for their emotions, then we enter the realm of tyranny. It completes the state’s control of the individual. It expands state power from the public sphere of discussion into the psychic sphere of thought and feeling. It invites policing not only of political sentiment but of deep feeling. It is a profound assault on the freedom of the individual.

It’s time to get serious about freedom of speech. It is unacceptable to repress the expression of ideas. It is unacceptable to repress the expression of hatred. “Hate speech is not free speech!”, people say. But it is.

By its very definition, free speech must include hate speech.

Speech must always be free, for two reasons: everyone must be free to express what they feel, and everyone else must have the right to decide for themselves whether those expressions are good or bad. When the EU, social-media corporations and others seek to make that decision for us, and squash ideas they think we will find shocking, they reduce us to the level of children. That is censorship’s greatest crime: it infantilises us. Let us now reassert our adulthood, our autonomy, and tell them: “Do not presume to censor anything on our behalf. We can think for ourselves.”

orwell-freedom-of-speech

Posted under Commentary, liberty by Jillian Becker on Tuesday, June 14, 2016

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Touché! 1

Here is a gladsome story of citizens striking back at dictatorial government.

From the Conservative Tribune:

If you own something — a business, a home, a car, land, really anything — liberals don’t believe that’s really yours. You’re just allowed to have that because the government lets you!

We saw this recently when the state of Oregon asked residents for access to their land to conduct a survey. One of the homeowners’ responses was so epic that it stopped them in their tracks, though — and will hopefully inspire others to do the same.

“(Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife) staff will be conducting surveys for foothill yellow-legged frogs and other amphibians over the next few months,” a letter from the Department of Fish and Wildlife to homeowners Larry and Amanda Anderson that was posted on Facebook read. “As part of this research we would like to survey the creek on your property,” the letter explained. “I am writing this letter to request your permission to access your property.”

And the reason? They might want to declare something on it endangered.

“Recent research indicates that the foothill-yellow legged frogs have declined significantly in recent years … Your cooperation will be greatly appreciated and will help contribute to the conservation of this important species.”

The homeowner in question decided to allow access to his land — on the same terms that government uses when it deals with its citizens.

I have divided our 2.26 acres into 75 equal survey units with a draw tag for each unit. Application fees are only $8.00 per unit after you purchase the ‘Frog Survey License’ ($120.00 resident/$180 non-resident) … You will also need an ‘Invasive Species‘ stamp for the vehicle ($15.00 for the first vehicle and $5.00 each add’l vehicle).

Survey gear can only include a net with 2″ diameter made of 100% organic cotton netting with no longer than an 18″ handle, non weighted and no deeper than 6′ from net frame to bottom of net. Handles can only be made of BPA-free plastics or wooden handles. After 1 p.m. you can use a net with a 3” diameter if you purchase the frog net endorsement ($75.00 resident/$250 non-resident).

Any frogs captured that are released will need to be released with an approved release device back into the environment unharmed.

One can only imagine the crestfallen expressions on the face of eager government functionaries once they opened the letter and realized that not only were Larry and Amanda Anderson not going to allow them to go on their land, but they didn’t even recognize how the government knew what was best for them, goshdarnit!

For the rest of us, however, this letter is a riot from beginning to end. Bravo, Mr. and Mrs. Anderson!

Posted under liberty, Miscellaneous, United States by Jillian Becker on Monday, June 13, 2016

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End of free speech on the social media? 17

On September 3, 2011, and again on September 28, 2015, we posted an article that makes the case for free speech.

Today we repeat this vital part of it:

The greatness of the West began with doubting. The idea that every belief, every assumption, should be critically examined started the might of Europe. When those old Greek thinkers who founded our civilization learnt and taught that no one has a monopoly of truth or ever will have, they launched the intellectual adventure that has carried the human race – not without a long interval in the doldrums – literally to the skies.

Socrates taught the utility of suspicion. He is reputed to have said, “The highest form of human excellence is to question oneself and others.” He was not, however, the first to use doubt for discovery. Thales of Miletos, who was born 155 years before Socrates, dared to doubt that religion’s explanatory tales about how the world came to be as it is were to be trusted, and he began exploring natural phenomena in a way that we recognize as scientific. He is often called the Father of Science. With him and his contemporary, Anaximander, who argued with him by advancing alternative ideas, came the notion – for the first time as far as we know – that reason could fathom and describe how the universe worked.

Science is one of the main achievements of the West, but it is not the only product of constructive doubt that made for its greatness. Doubt as a habit of mind or tradition of thinking meant that new, foreign, even counter-intuitive ideas were not dismissed. Europe, before and after it stagnated in the doldrums of the long Catholic Christian night (and even to some extent during those dark centuries), was hospitable to ideas wherever they came from. …

Our civilization cannot survive without this openness. Critical examination is the breath that keeps it alive. But it is in danger of suffocation. It is more threatened now than it has been for the last four hundred years by dogmatisms: Marxism, environmentalism, religion – above all Islam which absolutely forbids criticism.

Now to those sources of destructive dogmatism we must add another: the European Union.

The ideas of Marxism, environmentalism, Islam most need to be criticized. Because they are inherently intolerant, terroristic, and totalitarian. Over and over again, unendingly, they need to be torn to pieces by critics who hate them.

And they are the very ideologies that the European Union wants most to shield from critical examination. 

Breitbart London reports:

The European Commission has today [May 31, 2016] announced a partnership with Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Microsoft in order to crack down on what it classes as “illegal hate speech” while “criminaliz[ing]” perpetrators and “promoting independent counter-narratives” that the European Union favours.

A press release from the Commission this morning claims the new initiative has been set up “to respond to the challenge of ensuring that online platforms do not offer opportunities for illegal online hate speech to spread virally”.

The move has been branded “Orwellian” by Members of the European Parliament, and digital freedom groups have already pulled out of any further discussions with the Commission, calling the new policy “lamentable”.

The unelected, executive branch of the European Union (EU) released a Code of Conduct today that “includes a series of commitments to combat the spread of illegal hate speech online in Europe” developed “together with Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Microsoft (‘the IT companies’)” who have “signed up”.

That the bureaucratic dictatorship of the EU should try such a deplorable move is not surprising.

But why are Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Microsoft conceding to its authoritarian anti-freedom demands?

The commitments include “educat[ing] and rais[ing] awareness with their users” and building a “network” of “trusted reporters” to flag unwanted content. Facebook and Twitter are to provide “regular training to their staff on current societal developments” and work more closely with national governments and “their law enforcement agencies” to remove content the EU does not favor.

Most alarmingly, however, the platforms have also promised to engage in the active promotion of views and organisations the EU does favour, and the re-education of supposedly hateful users.

Facebook and others must, “recogniz[e] the value of independent counter speech against hateful rhetoric and prejudice, aim to continue their work in identifying and promoting independent counter-narratives, new ideas and initiatives and supporting educational programs that encourage critical thinking.”

Note that in  current leftist-dominated jargon, “critical thinking” means “uncritical thinking” – ie. meek acceptance of leftist dogma.

Janice Atkinson MEP told Breitbart London: “It’s Orwellian. Anyone who has read 1984 sees it’s very re-enactment live.

The Commission has been itching to shut down free speech in the Parliament and now they’re attacking social media. We have already seen Facebook ‘policing’ so-called right-wing postings.

“If an MEP, such as the centre-right Hungarians, the Danish People’s Party, the Finns, the Swedish Democrats, the Austrian FPO, say no to migration quotas because they cannot cope with the cultural and religious requirements of Muslims across the Middle East who are seeking refugee status, is that a hate crime? And what is their punishment? It’s a frightening path to totalitarianism.” …

The Code of Conduct has also been slammed by groups who have been working closely with the Commission. In a sign of an impending backlash, one organisation which promotes privacy, data protection, and net neutrality has already vowed to break ties.

The European Digital Rights (EDRi) announced its decision to pull out of future discussions with the Commission today, stating it does not have confidence in the “ill-considered code of conduct”.

“Faced with this lamentable outcome, and with no possibility to provide meaningful input to this process, the Commission has left us with no other choice but to withdraw from the discussion,” said Estelle Massé, EU Policy Analyst at Access Now. …

What does Facebook have to say about it?

Monika Bickert, Head of Global Policy Management at Facebook, said: “We welcome today’s announcement and the chance to continue our work with the Commission and wider tech industry to fight hate speech.”

Last September, German Chancellor Angela Merkel was overheard confronting Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg about “hate speech”, with Mr. Zuckerberg replying: “We need to do some work”

Now, the EU has described how: “The IT Companies support the European Commission and EU Member States… They share, together with other platforms and social media companies, a collective responsibility and pride in promoting and facilitating freedom of expression throughout the online world.”

Promote freedom of expression by censoring it? How does the Commission (ie. the bureaucratic oligarchy that governs the EU) reconcile these two contradictory activities?

The Commission argues that expanding censorship will somehow protect and expand free speech, because “[hate speech] negatively impacts those who speak out for freedom, tolerance and non-discrimination in our open societies and has a chilling effect on the democratic discourse on online platforms”.

Orwellian indeed!

Vĕra Jourová, EU Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality, said the new measures would counter Islamist terrorism:

“The recent terror attacks have reminded us of the urgent need to address illegal online hate speech. Social media is unfortunately one of the tools that terrorist groups use to radicalise young people and racist use to spread violence and hatred”.

Some excuse! The Islamic terrorists use code. And it is primarily to protect Islam from justified and desperately needed censure, that this whole scheme is being hatched, anyway.

What do Twitter, YouTube and Microsoft have to say about it? We are given only a Twitter statement:

Twitter’s Head of Public Policy for Europe, Karen White, said: “Hateful conduct has no place on Twitter … We look forward to further constructive dialogue between the European Commission, member states, our partners in civil society and our peers in the technology sector on this issue.”

“Hateful conduct”?  People express their opinions on Facebook. They argue for what they like and against what they don’t like. If they can no longer do that, there won’t be much use for it. What will Twitter be used for if not opinion? And how interesting will YouTube be, purged of argument?

Who will use the social media merely to repeat authorized opinions like mantras? By agreeing to carry only permitted orthodoxies, they are destroying themselves.

The great can sometimes be goofy 5

Mark Davis at Townhall replies to the most frequent criticisms of Donald Trump that are made in objection to his being the Republican candidate for the presidency:

As we ride the white-knuckle Trump train to the Cleveland GOP convention and beyond, the air will fill with criticisms of him. Some will come from Democrats, some from rebellious Republicans. From both sides, some of those criticisms will have merit and others will be simply ridiculous.

So here’s a convenient guide for assessing the anti-Trump pronouncements which we will swim in all summer:

“He is not a consistent conservative.” Completely correct. His populism certainly borrows from some strains of conservative thought, but his trade policies are of a more populist bent, and his willingness to entertain a higher minimum wage is straight-up liberalism.

Many conservatives who have long supported him know he does not bat a thousand, or even .800, but they feel his energy on immigration, job creation and hammering political correctness may result in more genuine conservative victories than, say, a Jeb Bush presidency might have yielded.

“He doesn’t like Hispanics/ women/ fill in the blank.” The attempt to portray Trump as a racist or misogynist fails on its face. It is a slander leveled by people who know he is likely to fare better with Latinos in November than Mitt Romney did in 2012 (27 percent). I’d love to send this year’s entire seventeen-strong GOP field through the streets of South Brooklyn. Precisely one would get waves of appreciative welcome, and it’s not either of our candidates who were actual Hispanics.

As for women, any Republican faces a challenge in the current era of government as master nurturer. But strong, self-reliant women are pervasive among Trump supporters, and there is not a whiff of mistreatment of women in his business history. Quite the opposite, Trump World appears to be a complete meritocracy, where women and people of color are rewarded for performance without regard to race or gender. This is admittedly jarring in a country that has been led too long by Democrats obsessed with weaponizing both.

“He seeks evangelical support, but has hardly led a Biblical life.” Direct hit. And to many, it appears not to matter one shred. …

To us, of course, the comparative unreligiousness of Donald Trump is a big plus.

“He is not a real pro-lifer.” … Has he bought into the absurdity that Planned Parenthood does some good things? He has, meaning he cannot grasp that the organization would not exist but for abortion services. These are not good.

We agree.

But there is no reason to believe that he is somehow lying in his testimony of becoming more pro-life as the years have passed. We conservatives are a funny lot; we persuade and coax and convince and lure people to our side, and when they pivot to agreement with us, we kick them in the crotch for not being with us their whole lives.

“We can’t count on his Supreme Court nominees.” What do people want him to do? He gave us a fat list of wonderful constitutionalist judges who would honorably fill the shoes of Antonin Scalia. Do we need a joint news conference with one of those names so that skeptics can know he means it? That is wildly inappropriate before he even accepts the nomination, and best left to the first days of his presidency, when he can make that announcement surrounded by the compelling imagery of the White House.

Trump’s tormentors responded to his worthy list with the same taunt they roll out with every conservative promise he makes: You can’t believe him, he’s a total liar. This is the mantra of those who don’t just doubt him; they hate him.

“He does stunningly unpresidential things.” Yes, he does, and most of them have helped him win the nomination. To the chagrin of more mannerly tastes, his admittedly brash and aggressive style has been punctuated with moments of truly embarrassing excess.

Those moments have dwindled as he has sent his rivals home. His discipline should sharpen even further now that he has but one opponent to target, and those attacks on Hillary Clinton will delight rather than annoy millions of Republicans who have watched him flay their favored hopeful.

“He contributed to Democrats.” No kidding, as does every businessman who wants to curry favor across party lines. I daresay Trump would not open a checkbook for her these days, now that their relationship is political. This trope is trundled out by critics seeking to sow seeds of doubt as to Trump’s reliability on core values.

“He doesn’t have any core values.” Have you listened to the man? Here are ten off the bat: stronger borders, blasting political correctness, leveling the trade playing field, rebuilding the military, taking better care of veterans, protecting gun rights, creating jobs, speaking truth to global jihad, and the broadly stated but resonant “make America great again”. 

Anyone is free to agree or disagree with those, but they have been recurring themes every day of his campaign. Doubters may claim that he might not follow through on all ten, but I’ll bet his batting average with those stated goals is better than the sorry job the Republican establishment has done following through on all of those things they said they would do if only we won the House, if only we won the Senate, if only, if only.

“He changes his views on the fly.” In general, this is not good. On important conservative economic points, if he has adopted one, he needs to stick to it.

There we disagree. Trump is a pragmatist. He is open to advice.

We hope he will change his mind about protectionism. His favoring it, in relation particularly to China, is the one position he has declared that we firmly object to.

That he can change his opinions is not a bad thing – until he finally adopts a strong free market policy. Only then need he “stick to it”.

His reversal on a job-killing minimum wage increase was a total unforced error.

That said, he has stated often that he may adjust views as he becomes more familiar with various issues. While this annoys ideologues (like me), it may prove somewhat endearing to voters who sense he may listen as he learns the ropes of governance.

And on things like reticence to commit U.S. troops to the Middle East, I am hoping he adjusts that view right after his first security briefing the afternoon of January 20, 2017.

“He compliments Putin.” He sure does, in a certain oblique way, noting the Russian leader’s strength and devotion to his goals. For his part, Putin is eating it up, to the degree that he has thrown a compliment or two back Trump’s way.

This is not exactly “Mister Gorbachev, tear down this wall.”

But what it may be is a master deal-maker softening an adversary in preparation for a global chess match that might go better with an opening chapter of sweet-talk than it has of late with Obama’s empty rhetoric followed by inaction or worse.

It is true that Trump has zero experience dealing with foreign leaders. But he has a half-century of experience sizing up rivals and adversaries, using words and actions to lure them toward his agenda.

“He traffics in conspiracy theories.” This wholly accurate Trump criticism holds water, but dings him far less than those wielding it might wish.

His flirtations with such matters has ranged from the goofy (Rafael Cruz and Lee Harvey Oswald) to the inexcusable (Bush lied about WMDs to get us into war). But these moments seem to flit by without consequence, and the most recent one, the flight of Vince Foster nostalgia, was actually defused by the hyperventilations of overreaction.

Vince Foster was a close associate of Hillary Clinton. How he died is disputed. Did he commit suicide, or was he murdered? The case for doubting suicide is plausible.

As the voices of punditry gasped at his doubts on the official Foster story, millions old enough to remember 1993 thought: “Hmmm. The Clintons. The scandals. The various pressures of covering for them. Foster’s repeated frustrations with the Washington whirlwind. The decades of envelope-pushing by Bill and Hillary ever since. Know what? Maybe I’m not so sure what happened either.” …

“He rooted for people to lose their homes in the recession’s housing collapse.” This is straight from the den of lies that is the Democrat party advertising brain trust.

They found audio of Trump in 2006, musing about how a drop in home prices could provide buying opportunities that could be of benefit to investors. The history of such logic dates to neanderthals hoping tiger pelts would dip in value to grease the wheels of commerce 30,000 years ago.

Yet Elizabeth Warren, who we learn has pocketed some cash from a house flip or two, lashed out against Trump’s cruelty for actively wishing for homeowners to lose everything. There are only two explanations for an attack this baseless: genuine stupidity and malicious intent. Let’s just say she is not stupid.

And finally, “He is only doing this for his own ego.” No doubt, the man has a stratospheric self-image, and doesn’t mind telling us so. But this has been a trait of his for the decades we have known him. Does he engage in business deals for his own image or because he wants them to succeed? Has he plunged into various ventures from the USFL to the Miss America pageant for his own image or because he wanted them to succeed?

He clearly wishes to succeed at everything he does, so why would this not extend to running the country? This does not mean I will necessarily agree with his every instinct, but if he genuinely pursues the things he talks about with determination and seriousness, there will be far more positive results than negative.

In the end, I’d rather have a president interested in actually doing things that will make him look good, than the last seven and a half years of a president who does whatever he wants because he thinks he is already omniscient and omnipotent.

And if, at the end of his presidency, the country will have been truly benefited, Trump will enjoy the enormous benefit of an even loftier list of achievements, and we might enjoy the benefit of an America made, at least in some ways, great again.

John Galt versus Pajama Boy 24

There are different Americas. The great America – the America viewed through European eyes with a mixture of snobbish patronizing indulgence and sheer envy is …

It is what Trump is. He could be said to personify it. His characteristics are those of great America: big, extroverted, ambitious, successful, rich, energetic, restless, generous, proud, adaptable, happy – all admirable qualities. Also … candid to the point of seeming naive, and – okay – boastful, not highly articulate in that he spins no fine phrases, and (many snort) “vulgar”. His candor is not naive; it would lay him open to being taken advantage of had he not been well schooled in the hard-bargaining world of American and international business. His boasting is fully justified: he is a winner. He says what needs to be said, as his tens of thousands of fans appreciate. As for vulgarity – it does no harm. Great America and its personification, Donald Trump, combine energy, high achievement, vision, and generosity that enormously benefit thousands, even millions of others. If the opulence Trump lives in proudly, his delight in showing off his achievements, his loud trumpeting of triumph with every success, is vulgar, then vulgarity is a “yuge” virtue. The fictitious characters whom he most resembles are Ayn Rand’s heroes in Atlas Shrugged. The John Galts and Dagny Taggarts who invent and build and drive and ever improve the engines of civilization.

Another America – more an anti-America – is personified by … Oh any of those sour pious busybodies who think they know best how everyone else should live their lives and want to force them to do as they say. Think current Democratic administration. Or Bernie Sanders. Intellectuals whose opinions were early in their lives pickled in Leftist theory. They are morally vain, needing to feel they are good rather than actually make good. Beings whom Trump would describe as “low energy people”. They make much of “compassion”, not noticing how much condescension there is in their compassion, and how much contempt in their condescension. Their college-age children need safe spaces, “trigger-warnings”, protection from challenging opinions. What words and phrases describe them best? Physically enervated, psychologically etiolated, smug, puritanical, introverted, dogmatic, envious, snobbish, acrimonious, precious, dishonest, hypocritical …Their model fictitious characters are Pajama Boy and Julia, for whom government needs to be an all-sustaining provider and a protecting nanny to the people.

If great America could come to power next year to guide the destiny of the country and shine a beacon light to the world, after 7+ years of stagnation under the debilitating and impoverishing ideologues of the Left, our civilization – now in decline – might be saved.

Or is that America lost and gone? Is Trump a relic of an unrecoverable past?

Margaret Thatcher interrupted the decline of Britain, the decades long rule of the Left. She tried to turn her country into a share-holding, property-owning nation. A free enterprise nation, where capitalism opened the way for everyone to become prosperous. She did what she could, but could not complete the transformation. The Left returned, though it might also call itself “Conservative”.

So even if Trump does become president, and those engines start up again, how far can he take America into a prosperous future? Generations of Americans have now been indoctrinated in schools and colleges to be socialists. Will the country have one last burst of glory, and then sink into welfare mediocracy? Is that the best that can be hoped for?

 

Jillian Becker   April 15, 2016

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