The march of the Left goes on … 8

… through the institutions and beyond.

Who was behind the “March For Our Lives”, into which schoolkids were launched by the tens of thousands? And even more women, according to Dana R. Fisher at the Washington Post:

Like other resistance protests, and like previous gun-control marches, the March For Our Lives was mostly women. Whereas the 2017 Women’s March was 85 percent women, the March for Our Lives was 70 percent women. … Contrary to what’s been reported in many media accounts, the D.C. March for Our Lives crowd was not primarily made up of teenagers. Only about 10 percent of the participants were under 18. The average age of the adults in the crowd was just under 49 years old, which is older than participants at the other marches I’ve surveyed but similar to the age of the average participant at the Million Moms March in 2000, which was also about gun control.

The occasion for the march was the shooting on February 14, 2018, of 14 students and three adults at a Florida high school by a 19-year-old mass murderer.

The pretext for it was to protest against the ownership of guns by citizens of the United States on the grounds that if the gun-ownership were to be made illegal such mass murders would not happen.

The real aim of it was to advance the cause of the Left – unarmed populations dependent solely on government for protection.

Who organized the march and who paid for it?

Breitbart reports:

The March for Our Lives Action Fund, for example, was registered with the District of Columbia Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs on Feb. 21, 2018 as a Deleware-based organization with a business address in Encino, California.

The agent for the fund is listed as CT Corporation System, a D.C.-based firm that handles compliance issues. Jeri Rhodes is listed as the executing officer for the filing.

Rhodes is the Associate Executive Secretary for Finance and Administration for the Friends Committee on National Legislation, which is a Quaker lobbying group with the goal to “advance peace and justice.”

The Quakers, famous for being pacifists, have for some time now been aiders and abettors of tyranny and terrorism. For instance, they run collective farms in North Korea, and strongly support the BDS movement and Hamas.  

Rhodes’s LinkedIn profile states that she once worked for Greenpeace.

For the evil Greenpeace does, see our post here.

Major players and organizations — including Everytown, Giffords, Move On, and Women’s March LA — told BuzzFeed News they are helping with logistics, strategy, and planning for next month’s March for Our Lives rally and beyond. Much of the specific resources the groups are providing to the Parkland students remains unclear — as is the full list of supporting organizations — but there are broad outlines.

Giffords,  an organization started by former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ) that fights gun violence, is working with Everytown and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America to plan the main march on Washington — as well as sister rallies across the country. A spokesperson for Giffords told BuzzFeed News that it is “lending support in any way the students need, especially helping to operationalize these marches from logistics to programming”. …

Planned Parenthood and the George Soros-funded Move On are also in the mix of left-wing groups behind the march.

BuzzFeed News reported, “MoveOn said it will encourage its millions of members to follow and promote the March for Our Lives movement on social media and attend the rally” and would help with security and other logistics.

A spokesperson for Planned Parenthood said it is “teaching and hosting trainings” for teens “to keep momentum going so they don’t get burned out,” BuzzFeed News reported.

The NPS [National Park Service] permit reveals “persons in charge” of the D.C. event, including Deena Katz, the co-executive producer of Dancing with the Stars who helped organized the Los Angeles Women’s March. …

March for Our Lives also started a GoFundMe page that has raised $3.3 million. The text on the page states:

The funds will be spent on the incredibly difficult and expensive process that is organizing a march like this. We have people making more specific plans, but for now, know that this is for the march and everything left over will be going to the victims’ funds.

… The NPS permit reveals more about the event, including the “event overview”, which states:

Approximately (500,000) student participants and adults from across the country, will no longer risk their lives waiting for someone else to take action to stop the epidemic of mass school shootings that has become all too familiar. In the tragic wake of the seventeen lives brutally cut shot in Florida, politicians are telling us that now is not the time to talk about guns. March for Our Lives believes the time is now.

The permit also says that the organizers have to spend millions on insurance for the event.

Procure public and employee liability insurance from responsible companies with a minimum limitation of $2,000,000 per person for any one claim and an aggregate limit of $5,000,000 for any number of claims arising from any one incident. The United States of America shall be named as an additional insured on all such policies. The permit number will be included on said policy. …

Nonetheless, the Florida students who are credited with organizing the march insist it is teens, not adults, who are in charge, while admitting adults are involved.

Cameron Kasky, 17, acknowledged that the anti-Trump group Indivisible is helping and said that their assistance is necessary because of the role race allegedly plays in school shootings.

Kasky said in an interview on Friday with National Public Radio:

You know our story was told because we are an affluent white community and we have to shine the spotlight that was given on us on everybody in the world that has to deal with this on a daily basis. So people like Indivisible, who represent students who are in lower-income communities and don’t get to speak out the way we do because people don’t listen — we have to connect with these students.

The March for Our Lives Twitter account also features a video with students stating the anti-gun talking points used by left-wing groups regularly, including blaming the National Rifle Association [NRA] for school shootings.

The March for Our Lives website states that 840 marches are planned in the U.S. and around the world.

Not planned by schoolkids, we may be sure.

Bruce Thornton writes at Front Page:

Last Saturday hundreds of thousands of high schoolers gathered across the country in a “March for Our Lives” rally. Organized and financed by anti-gun nuts and other left-wing outfits, and ornamented with Hollywood celebrities like George Clooney and Oprah Winfrey, the spectacle was filled with the emotional exhibitionism and juvenile policy recommendations one would expect from the most pampered and worst-educated cohort of young people in American history – the perfect shock troops for progressive propaganda. …

The author carries on a bit about the kids having no “faith”, meaning that he thinks being Christian would keep them from this sort of thing. He might note that the Quakers, who are intensely Christian, supported the march. And as to faith – the organizers and paymasters, and all too many of the indoctrinated students themselves, have faith in “progressivism” (aka communism). We do not agree with him about that, but what we like of what he says, we quote:

We have been witnessing for some time [a] combination of adolescent immaturity and therapeutic leftism in the college “snowflake” and “safe-space” phenomenon, and in the intolerance of dissent and willingness to use tantrums to shut up anybody challenging the self-importance of pampered, privileged college students. We shouldn’t be surprised, then, that now high school students are being recruited by the left to “march” against the wicked NRA, which stands in the way of the longtime leftist goal of gutting the Second Amendment.The progressive goal of centralized and concentrated power, and the transfer of all authority and autonomy from the citizens and states to the federal Leviathan, is challenged by the right of citizens to own a means of self-protection that guards against the monopoly of force, historically the foundation of tyrannical power. And what better occasion for chipping away at the citizens’ right to keep and bear arms than the telegenic sentimentalism of a school shooting? And what better cat’s paw for achieving change than innocent high school kids and their trauma – carefully selected, of course, to bring the right message? The drama and pathos of victims, particularly when they’re young, is a great vehicle for peddling incoherent and useless policies – and for camouflaging the truth that those recommendations are basically misdirection from the progressives’ political goals.

Take David Hogg, who was present during the attack last month on the high school in Parkland. The seventeen-year-old appears with four other Stoneman Douglas students on the cover of Time, and has become a darling of the anti-gun crowd for his profanity-laced tantrums that demonstrate perfectly the portrait sketched above: “The pathetic f***ers that want to keep killing our children, they could have blood from children splattered all over their faces and they wouldn’t take action because they all still see those dollar signs,” he said of the NRA and other lawmakers defending the Second Amendment.

Notice how this callow youth simply regurgitates the stale clichés of the gun-control fundamentalists. He obviously has no clue that the NRA has political clout not because of the pittance it gives politicians compared to, say, public-employee unions, but because millions of Americans support its mission to defend a Constitutional right they hold dear. … He has no clue that the demonized, perfectly legal AR-15 was already banned from 1994-2004, without lowering gun-deaths even as the number of guns increased. Like his equally addled elders, he can’t fathom that more regulations of guns do nothing to keep them out of the hands of thugs and psychopaths, but do complicate and limit the rights of law-abiding citizens.

No thought, no empirical evidence, no respect for facts, no reasoned arguments, just the potty-mouth, hysterical emotion, bathetic drama, and attention-getting antics of an immature child who thinks his feelings are the world’s highest priority. …

But we can’t blame the young. The progressive transformation of our culture has been directed at creating just such students, whose natural inclinations to self-drama and emotion rather than thinking make them perfect constituents for an ideology that flourishes among those who obsess over their feelings  

And whatever is said of the youths applies equally to the women.

But there are youths of another sort.

Of course, there are millions of young people who somehow have managed to avoid this progressive siren song. … But they are demonized and scorned by the progressive pundits and politicians who distrust anyone who challenges their narrative. This silent cohort of the young is the true resistance against an ideology that prefers them to be robotic shock troops.

Here is a student, Kyle Kashuv, from the  school that was attacked, who feels the horror of the mass shooting and the sadness of the loss of lives as much as any other, but has thought about the event intelligently, and puts forward common-sense and practical ideas that could really work to  keep schools safe from such an attack. He points out that government – in particular the “cowards of Broward” meaning the progressive Sheriff and his cowardly underlings – failed in its duty, yet the protesters want to put more power in government hands. Because his ideas, including a refusal to blame gun-ownership, do not fit with the ideological aims of the organizers, they would not allow him to speak to the marchers from the platform.

He speaks here:

 

Trump, Trumpism, and THEM 2

It’s altogether too much for THEM to bear! The man is a billionaire who loves life, lives well, and enjoys himself tremendously both at work and at play; has a wife who is one of the most beautiful women in the world, and is also graceful, gentle, intelligent and competent; has handsome successful children and bright charming grandchildren; and, on top of all that, has become the most powerful man in the world. To add a final insult to THEM, he is perfectly healthy at the age 0f 71; immensely energetic and strong; and fully capable of continuing to do what he wants to do.

And then, try as THEY might to find something he has done terribly wrong to blot his intolerably immaculate escutcheon, THEY cannot find anything!

Actually, it is even worse for THEM. Far worse. Because not only is he victorious, THEY are defeated. Probably (with luck) irrecoverably. He has risen to power at a moment when THEY had  almost conquered the world; almost made it poor; almost brought the nations – possibly even including the USA – into universal homogeneity at the lowest level of subsistence in subjection to THEM running a world communist government (in order to “save the planet” from people using cars and making things in factories); almost destroyed Western civilization.

We are enthusiasts for Trumpism because we are warriors against THEM.

As such, do we exaggerate his achievements? If so, by how much? Overlook his flaws? If so, what are they?

As a corrective to our possibly overindulgent judgment of the president, we reproduce an article by Victor Davis Hanson; surely a reasonable and fair assessment of the Trump presidency thus far and prospectively. It is also necessary to know that it appeared at the mostly, persistently, and emphatically anti-Trump National Review:

As President Trump finished his first full year in office, he could look back at an impressive record of achievement of a kind rarely attained by an incoming president — much less by one who arrived in office as a private-sector billionaire without either prior political office or military service.

As unintended proof of his accomplishments, Trump’s many liberal opponents have gone from initially declaring him an incompetent to warning that he has become effective — insanely so — in overturning the Obama progressive agenda. Never Trump Republicans acknowledge that Trump has realized much of what they once only dreamed of — from tax reform and deregulation to a government about-face on climate change, the ending of the Obamacare individual mandate, and expansion of energy production.

Trump so far has not enacted the Never Trump nightmare agenda. The U.S. is not leaving NATO. It is not colluding with Vladimir Putin, but maintaining sanctions against Russia and arming Ukrainians. It is not starting a tariff war with China. The administration is not appointing either liberals or incompetents to the federal courts. A politicized FBI, DOJ, and IRS was Obama’s legacy, not Trump’s doing, as some of the Never Trump circle predicted. Indeed, the Never Trump movement is now mostly calcified, as even some of its formerly staunch adherents concede. It was done in by the Trump record and the monotony of having to redefine a once-welcomed conservative agenda as suddenly unpalatable due to Trump’s crude fingerprints on it.

On the short side, Trump has still not started to build his much-promised border wall, to insist on free but far fairer trade with Asia and Europe, or to enact an infrastructure-rebuilding program. Nonetheless, Trump’s multitude of critics is unable to argue that his record is shoddy and must instead insist that his list of achievements is due mostly to the Republican Congress. Or they claim he is beholden to the legacy of the Obama administration. Or they insist that credit belongs with his own impressive economic and national-security cabinet-level appointments. Or that whatever good came of Trump’s first year is nullified by Trump’s persistent personal odiousness.

At the conclusion of Trump’s first year, the stock market and small-business confidence are at record highs, and consumer confidence has not been higher in 17 years. Trump’s loud campaign promises to lure back capital and industry to the heartland no longer look quixotic, given new tax and deregulatory incentives and far cheaper energy costs than in most of Europe and Japan. Trump has now ended 66 regulations for every one he has added. Few believed a Republican president could cut the corporate-tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent while capping state- and local-tax deductions for mostly high earners to $10,000. Those are the highlights of a comprehensive tax-reform and -reduction agenda that will likely accelerate the economy to an even more rapid growth rate than Trump’s first two full quarters of annualized increases in GDP of more than 3 percent. Dozens of large companies are already passing along some of their anticipated tax cuts to employees through increased wages or bonuses — dismissed as “crumbs” by House minority leader Nancy Pelosi. Rising workers’ wages and anticipated tax credits and savings for the lower and middle classes for now are rendering almost mute the age-old fights about state-mandated minimum-wage laws.

The mostly unheralded nixing of the Obamacare individual mandate — once the great ideological battlefield of the Affordable Care Act — will insidiously recalibrate the ACA into a mostly private-market enterprise.

Domestic oil production is slated to exceed 2017 record levels and soon may hit an astonishing 11 million barrels a day. “Peak oil” for now is an ossified idea, as are massive wind and solar Solyndra-like government subsidies and the mostly unworkable Paris Climate Accord. Gas, oil, and coal production are expected to rise even higher with new Trump initiatives to open up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge field in Alaska, encourage more fracking on federal lands and offshore, and complete needed pipeline links while encouraging coal exportation.

For all the political horse-trading over extending or ending the Obama executive orders on DACA, illegal immigration has declined according to some metrics by over 60 percent. It is now at the lowest levels in the 21st century — even before the ending of chain migration and enacting of new border-security initiatives. Abroad, the ISIS caliphate is for all purposes now extinct. Its demise is in part due to Trump’s outsourcing of the conflict to Secretary of Defense James Mattis, who liberated ground commanders from Obama-administration-era legalistic rules of engagement. Trump’s appointees, such as Mattis, National Security Adviser H. R. McMaster, U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, CIA Director Mike Pompeo, and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, have worked in concert to restore U.S. deterrence.

Variously called “principled realism” or a new “Jacksonianism”,  the Trump doctrine has now replaced the “strategic patience” and “lead from behind” recessionals of the prior administration and not emulated the neoconservative nation-building of the George W. Bush administration. New pressures on nuclear North Korea have prompted the toughest U.N. trade sanctions in history on the rogue state. After Trump’s fiery and erratic rhetoric and muscular displays of U.S. naval and air power in the Pacific, Pyongyang has agreed to landmark talks with Seoul. China is slowly beginning to pressure North Korea to stop launching missiles. Beijing’s Asian neighbors are beefing up missile defense and growing closer to the U.S. For now, the bad cop Trump and the good cops Mattis and McMaster have encouraged friends and frightened enemies, although the shelf life of such diplomatic gymnastics is limited.

Trump almost immediately voiced support for mass demonstrations in Iran, in a manner Obama failed to do in 2009. An ironic fallout of the disastrous 2015 Iran deal may be that the theocracy so hyped its cash windfalls from American relaxation of embargoes and sanctions that it inadvertently raised Iranians’ expectations of a rise in the standard of living. Then it dashed just those hopes by squandering hundreds of millions of newfound dollars in subsidizing Hezbollah, conducting a costly expeditionary war to save the genocidal Bashar al-Assad regime, and likely continuing an exorbitantly costly nuclear-weapons program. What is different about Iran’s internal unrest this time around is twofold. The Trump administration is not invested in any “landmark” deal with Tehran that requires ignoring protesters in the street. Trump also does not envision revolutionary and terror-sponsoring Iran as a “very successful regional power” with “legitimate defense concerns”. Rather, he sees Tehran, along with ISIS and al-Qaeda, as the chief source of Middle East unrest and anti-Americanism.

Moving the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, in line with past congressional mandates, along with threatening to curtail Palestinian aid, only reifies what is now widely accepted. The new Middle East is not the old. There are no longer any ongoing and viable “peace plans”, “road maps”, or “summits”.  America is becoming energy-independent and immune to oil boycotts. There are new and greater threats than Israel to Arab regimes, from nuclear Iran to the scourge of Islamic terrorism in Iraq and Syria. Patience is wearing thin as after 30 years the Palestinians still cannot create transparent and consensual government. Seventy years after the birth of Israel, the Palestinians still insist on being called “refugees” — when most of the world’s millions of displaced persons decades ago moved on.

Yet as Trump heads into the 2018 midterms, his favorability ratings are unimpressive. Because of loud Democratic threats of using impeachment proceedings to undermine the Trump project, the 2018 fight for the House is taking on historic importance. It is not just a referendum on the Trump agenda, but likely a means to seek to discredit or remove Trump himself — even if the prosecution in the Senate would likely never find the necessary 67 votes. In sum, an embattled Trump now finds himself in a war on all fronts. The first and most important conflict is one of favorability. Trump’s actual approval ratings, as in 2016, are probably somewhat higher than the low 40s reported in many polls. But Trump’s image is still astonishingly dismal in relation to his unappreciated achievements. For congressional Republicans to survive the midterms and retain majorities, Trump perhaps has to hope that the economy will grow not just at 3 percent but even more robustly — with marked rises in workers’ take-home wages due to tax cuts and labor shortages. Is it really true that politics can be reduced to “It’s the economy, stupid”? Obama failed to achieve 3 percent growth per annum over his eight years. As a result he may have lost both houses of Congress, but he also was reelected. More likely, no one quite knows the exact political consequences of economic growth. Between November 1983 and November 1984, the economy grew at 7 percent and ipso facto ushered the once “amiable dunce” Ronald Reagan into a landslide reelection victory over a previously thought-to-be-far-more-impressive Walter Mondale. Yet this time it may be that 3 percent GDP growth will not mitigate Trump’s personal negatives but 4–5 percent would.

It is said that Trump is also at war with himself, in the sense that his tweeting alienates the key constituencies of women voters and independents. Conventional wisdom assures that Trump’s off-the-cuff invectives only fuel his critics and overshadow his achievements. In the heart of immigration negotiations, Trump was quoted secondhand as having called Haiti and other formerly Third World countries “sh**hole” countries and thus undesirable sources of mass immigration to the U.S. Whatever the reliability of reports of the slur, Trump is certainly not the sort of politician to have said instead, “It would seem wiser to encourage diverse immigration, including immigration from the most developed countries as well as the least developed” — even as many people privately agree with Trump’s earthy assessment that immigration should be far more selective and include a far greater variety of countries of origin.

Both Trump’s spoken and electronic stream-of-consciousness venting can be unorthodox, crude and cruel, and often extraneous. But can anyone measure whether and to what degree his Twitter account energizes and widens his base more than it loses him supporters otherwise sympathetic to his agenda? The orthodox wisdom is that Trump should let his achievements speak for themselves, curb his raucous campaign rallies, and restrict his daily tweets to expansions on his agenda and achievement and leave the feuding to subordinates. When Trump has avoided ad hominem spats, and been filmed conducting policy sessions with his cabinet and congressional enemies and friends, he has looked and acted “presidential”.  How good then must Trump’s record become to overshadow both the prejudices against him and his own inner demons to achieve favorability ratings that will provide coattails for his congressional supporters and fuel an even more ambitious second-year agenda? Again, time is running out, and in the next ten months the economy must boom as never before or Trump must learn to sound more like a Ronald Reagan than a Howard Stern.

Trump is simultaneously at war with Special Counsel Robert Mueller. Once again, the critical element is time in the sense of the looming midterm elections. So far, after months of media speculation and press leaks, there is no evidence of Russian–Trump collusion. Robert Mueller’s investigative team has been riddled by charges of conflicts of interest, workplace unprofessionalism, and political bias. The basis of the entire writ against Trump, the Fusion GPS–Steele dossier, is now mostly discredited. The file’s lurid sexual accusations alone likely won it notoriety in 2016 among journalists and Obama-administration enablers. The more that is learned about the Steele opposition-research file — paid for by the Clinton campaign, polluted by Russian rumor-mongering, peddled to the FBI, manipulated by the Obama administration to justify FISA surveillance, likely leaked to pet reporters by Obama-administration and Clinton-campaign officials — the more apparent it may become that Mueller is investigating Russian collusion in entirely the wrong place. Another irony is that pushback against the Mueller fishing expedition may prompt reinvestigations into the earlier election-cycle-aborted inquiries about Clinton email improprieties. The Obama administration also likely acted improperly in ignoring the Clinton–Uranium One connections and Hillary Clinton’s violations of agreements with the Obama administration to report the sources of all private donations to the Clinton Foundation during her tenure. So far resistance at both the Department of Justice and the FBI to releasing documents pertaining to all these avenues of interest has stymied House and Senate inquiries. If the Republicans lose the Congress, these investigations will shut down entirely. Democratic majorities will give Mueller a free hand to do as he pleases without worries about past complaints over the ethical shortcomings of his investigation. Select Intelligence and Judiciary Committee hearings will likely give way in the House to impeachment proceedings. But if within the next nine months there are new explosive revelations about the improper or even illegal uses of the Steele dossier and the Clinton scandals, while the Mueller team settles for face-saving indictments of former Trump subordinates for transgressions that have little to do with the original Mueller mandate to investigate Russian–Trump collusion, then Trump will win the legal war. In that case, Trump finally will not only weather the collusion crisis but find himself a political beneficiary of one of the most scandalous efforts to subvert a political campaign and improperly surveil American citizens in recent American history.

Trump wages a fourth war against the proverbial mainstream media, whose coverage, according to disinterested analyses, runs over 90 percent anti-Trump. Negative Trump news fuels Trump-assassination chic in popular culture, the rants of late-night-television comedians, the political effort to grandstand with impeachment writs, calls to invoke the 25th Amendment, and lawsuits alleging violations of the emoluments clause. The threats of a Madonna, the raving of Representative Maxine Waters, the boasts of the “Resistance,” the efforts of blue states to nullify federal immigration law or to dodge compliance with unwelcome new federal tax statutes, and the conspiracy fables of Representative Adam Schiff are all fueled by media attention and preconceived narratives hostile to Trump. The anti-Trump news is still determined to accomplish what so far the Clinton campaign, Obama holdovers, and deep-state bureaucrats have not: so discredit Trump the messenger that his message becomes irrelevant. Trump apparently fights his war against the media in the fashion in which toxic chemotherapy battles cancer. His personal and electronic rants against “fake news” and “crooked” journalists are intended to exhibit media biases and thus discredit negative coverage just before the public tires of Trump’s own off-putting venom. On the one hand, Trump’s anemic approval ratings might suggest the media are winning in their 24/7 efforts to portray Trump as a Russian colluder, rank profiteer, distracted golfer, tax cheat, sexual predator, trigger-happy warmonger, or senile septuagenarian. On the other hand, the media are polling worse than Trump. And his battle has nearly destroyed the credibility of CNN, which has fired marquee journalists for false anti-Trump narratives, been embarrassed by hosts mouthing scatological venom, suffered employees’ hot-mic wishes for Trump’s death, and seen its anchors and special correspondents reduced to on-air rants. For now, no one knows whether Trump’s war against the media is pyrrhic, in that he may defeat his journalist enemies and even render their entire networks discredited, but at such costs that he is no longer politically viable.

Trump is waging a fifth and final war against Democrats. So far Trump has sucked all the oxygen out of the Democratic atmosphere. Politicians and operatives are so obsessed with proving Trump a liar, a cheat, a pervert, a con artist, or an incompetent that they have offered so far no viable opposition leader or alternative agenda. But will just being not-Trump make Democrats preferable? The centrist Democratic party of the 1990s no longer exists. It has become instead a coalition of patched-together progressive causes. The redistributionism and neo-socialism of Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren are now Democratic economic mainstays. Barack Obama’s lead-from-behind legacy remains Democratic foreign policy. Identity politics still constitutes the culture of the party establishment.

In more practical terms, for all the animus against Trump the person, his agenda — tax cuts, deterrence, reindustrialization, middle-class job growth, closing the borders, the melting pot — is increasingly polling well. In many cases, Trumpism is more popular than Democratic signature issues such as tax hikes, larger government, more entitlements, open borders, more identity politics, and European Union–like internationalism.

The idea of Oprah Winfrey as the 2020 Democratic nominee and the unwillingness of Democrats to secure the border reveal what can happen when a party is reduced to defining itself as not being the incumbent president. The Republicans learned that lesson in their four-time failure to defeat the hated Roosevelt. Democrats in the 1980s had little to offer the country other than not being the supposed buffoon Ronald Reagan. Shutting down the government is also rarely a winning strategy for an out party — as the Republicans learned in their politically disastrous 1995–96 showdown with Bill Clinton. In 2018, it may be enough for congressional candidates to run on anti-Trump invective without expressing strong views on the issues or identifying with any particular national leader. But it won’t be so in 2020, especially if the Trump agenda grows more popular and Trump allows it rather than himself to become his signature message.

For now, all that is certain about Trump’s first year is the 2016 truism that past prognostications and current polls are irrelevant. The jester candidate, Donald Trump, destroyed, not just beat, his 16 primary rivals. The doomed candidate Trump defeated the most well-financed, experienced, and media-favored Democratic candidate in memory. The inept President Trump’s first year was not liberal or directionless, but marked the most successful and conservative governance since Ronald Reagan’s. Trump’s critics insist that his comeuppance is on the horizon. They assure us that character is destiny. Trump’s supposed hubris will finally earn an appropriately occasioned nemesis. But in the meantime, nearly half the country may be happy that the establishment was not just wrong but nearly discredited in its non-ending, prejudicial dismissal of the Trump agenda and, so far, the successful Trump presidency.

So: HOWL globalists, socialists, warmists, feminists, Muslims, and Democrats.

He is impervious to your insults.

He is charitable and generous. Yes, he is.

He is not a “racist” or “anti-woman”. Certainly not.

He does not take drugs, drink alcohol – or even coffee.

He has not colluded with the Russians, or any other foreign power. (Obama did with the Russians and the Iranians. Hillary Clinton did with anyone who would pay her.)

He flourishes, he laughs, he acts, he wins.

Our Darkening Hour 8

Our Western civilization is roiled by conflict; political struggles of the utmost importance.

Some call them “wars”. They are being fought mostly without weapons and violence, though one side (the wrong side of course) often resorts to physical attack, convinced that its righteousness justifies and demands it.

We quote from an article by Paul Collits at the Australian magazine Quadrant. (Our cuts include most of the specifically Australian references.)

By my reckoning there are six key wars, all of which must be identified, understood and, most of all, fought.

First, there is the war that must be won against political correctness in all its forms.  This is a fight between the elites and the punters.  It is a battle for the heart and soul of our society.  On one side are the careerists and ideologues of the fevered swamps of Washington, Canberra and so on; on the other, the deplorables, the Reagan Democrats, the Howard Battlers, the Struggle Street listeners tuned in to talkback radio, the small businessmen and women, the two-income families who want what is right for their kids. …

Second, there is the war against environmentalism in all its guises.  The god of “sustainability”, born in the 1980s … is now so embedded in schools, universities and media it is not remotely clear how one might fight back.  The god of sustainability has delivered to us the scourges and nonsenses that are “peak oil”, “climate change” and “renewable” energy.

Third, there is the war between Islam and the West.  This takes many forms – from global migration of economic refugees, to sharia law, welfare fraud, gangs and terrorism.  Its fronts are the banlieu of Paris, the bookshops of Lakemba and the streets of Melbourne.  Taking the side of Islam in this war is politics 101 for today’s “leaders”.

Fourth, there is the war against the Administrative State.  The State’s overreach is now all but complete.  The nanny state rules our lives.  It is the tool by which political correctness is enforced, by which freedom of speech and freedom of belief are purged and personal conduct regulated. Paranoia, you say? … The State’s nannyism combines with political correctness to haul the innocent before the faux courts of our time … Their crime? Saying that which others do not want heard. …

Fifth, there is the war between globalism and nationalism. The Davos brigade, the Soros network of lavishly funded activists, and their many lackeys in politics, Silicon Valley and elsewhere, lead the charge. Their weapons are globalisation and technology.  Their institutions are global, not national. Their aim is global governance and the end of the nation state, with its old fashioned values of patriotism flag and family.

Finally, there is the war on truth. This is the biggest of them all. …  [We must fight for truth against] the victory of Derrida, Foucault and their fellow-travelling Marxists and neo-Marxists who occupy the commanding cultural heights of our society and have succeeded in embedding and seizing our key institutions – the media, political parties, schools, universities, Hollywood and now even the corporations. The whole phenomenon of fake news bespeaks their success. …

[Their] biggest victory … was over our poor dumb millennials, now two generations removed from any proper understanding of Western values and virtues, and the core value of the West is truth. Earlier, when I spoke of schools, I did not say “our” schools, for they no longer are. They, too, have been colonised. Their graduates will list the ills and crimes of the West and rattle them off by Pavlovian rote, and thus do we hear of a past populated by the likes of Simon Legree [the cruel slave-owner in Uncle Tom’s Cabin – ed] but seldom if ever of Wilberforce [who launched the successful campaign to free all the slaves in the British Empire – ed]. The ease with which, for example, the young are convinced of something patently untrue can be seen in the numbers of our young who lazily embrace the ersatz version of marriage now de rigueur. …

There are other battles outside the six wars, of course, but it would be hard to find a front or even a minor skirmish that is not a theatre of these six conflicts. …

In [the] “darkest hours” [of World War II] Churchill certainly did not believe that checking and defeating an existential threat to the very being of the British Isles would be easy, nor that it could be avoided. Everything was on the line. His own War Cabinet was divided.  A serious argument was made … that Britain should seek an accommodation with Hitler.  Much of the British army was stranded and exposed in a foreign land, albeit only 22 miles away at its closest. … Victory would be deemed by any reasonable appraisal as most unlikely. …

The two wars since – Vietnam and the second Iraq War – featured murky enemies, often hard to find and certainly hard to destroy, and new technologies. But far more telling was the lack of consensus at home about whether those wars should be fought at all — whether the enemy was, indeed, “the enemy”. What Churchill could count on was a united and angry populace … committed to the fight with heart and soul — “blood, sweat and tears”, as he put it. …

Who do we have manning the barricades today? 

The barricades of the wrong side, that is to say.

Justin Trudeau.  Macron.  Merkel. Theresa May. Jean-Claude Juncker.  Turnbull.  The Davos set.  The UN.  Pope Francis. Mark Zuckerberg. Oprah. Prince Charles. These are the figures that flit across the world’s TV screens and its collective frontal lobe, mouth their platitudes and move on to the next sound byte, their pronouncement’s on Islam’s amity or the wickedness of cheap power seldom questioned by a media imbued with the same views, the same agendas, the same presumption that projected virtue can trump the precedent of history. Just how they never explain. These leaders, so called, are almost to a man or woman, batting for the enemy by word and deed and silence.  The worst of them actively collaborate and work against the interests of their own people.

If, on the off-chance, our young people might be cajoled to see [the film] Darkest Hour, they just might begin to see with a clarity not previously available to them how we are, indeed, involved in a number of lethal wars. To lose them will destroy their futures in ways even more insidious than Hitler or even Stalin could have imagined. And they might consider voting for folks who might be minded to fight the battles that matter now.  An outsider?  One hated by his own party?  Someone who sees enemies and understands how to fight them.  Someone willing to spare the niceties?  Someone willing to make his country great again?  Err, wait a minute …

Although at present we have on our side – the side of truth, freedom, civilized values, and the nation state – a great Commander-in-Chief in the person of President Trump, it is not at all clear at this time which side will be victorious.

In all the wars, the enemy is the Left. With its “political correctness”, environmentalism, alliance with Islam, deep-state socialism, globalism, and hatred of our civilization which it is determined to destroy, the Left has conquered the institutions of education, most of the media, the entertainment industry, and the pinnacles of power in many Western states. It held the pinnacle of power in the US for eight years and did much harm to America, making the people poorer and the country weaker; and to the world by upheaving populations, sending millions pouring out of shithole countries and flooding into our world. The tide is against us.

Will President Trump, standing alone among leaders as Churchill did, succeed as he did in turning the tide?

Race to the top 2

What qualifies an American to be president of the United States, apart from his or her birth in one of them, and being over the age of 35?

Whatever training, talents, experience, knowledge, opinions, accomplishments qualified a person in the past are no longer applicable. Forget about them. There is a new set of qualifications.

His or her skin color comes first. He or she must not be white.

Next comes his or her gender. “Cis-heteronormative Male” is out. Any of the other 73 genders are acceptable. So take out “he, him, his” from the discussion.

Next, she or ze must be a show-biz celebrity, the more successful the better. It is personal popularity that counts, not ability to do the extremely difficult job.

Next, she or ze must have an emotionally moving life-story, preferably rags-to-riches.

And finally, she or ze must place herself or zirself on the far left of the political spectrum.

Out of 323,000,000 people right now, there is just one who fits the new bill perfectly; just one that the Democratic Party can confidently nominate for the presidency in 2020: the billionaire TV star Oprah Winfrey.

Hollywood has chosen her, because she made this speech at the Golden Globes.

It is a moving speech. Never mind that she says the six men who raped the young women coming home from church were never “persecuted’ when she meant “prosecuted”. Never mind that she condemns corruption but has not been heard protesting against the extreme corruption of the Obama administration including Hillary Clinton’s. Never mind that she makes a victim of the arrogant and victimizing media. Never mind that many of the women present – notably Meryl Streep and Oprah Winfrey herselfenabled men like Harvey Weinstein to make victims of women, while the actual victims had not been invited to the Golden Globes. She delivered her speech well. She is likable. The Democrats are in dire need of a plausible candidate for the presidency. So hardly had the applause for her speech died away, when her name was being put forward.

Breitbart reports on what the polls (the same polls that predicted an easy win for Hillary Clinton in the last presidential election) predict for Oprah in competition with President Trump:

According to a Rasmussen Reports survey released on Wednesday, 48 percent of likely U.S. voters would choose entertainment mogul Oprah Winfrey in 2020, while 38 percent would choose Trump.

Notably, an additional 14 percent of voters said they would be undecided in a contest between the two. Buzz surrounding a possible presidential bid for Winfrey began after her speech at the Golden Globes on Sunday night. Winfrey used the occasion of becoming the first black woman to receive the Cecile B. DeMille award, to speak about a promising future for minority women and, to credit other women who have spoken out about sexual harassment in Hollywood.

According to Yahoo, “Polling outlets have surveyed Oprah’s popularity in the past, and a March 2017 Quinnipiac poll found Oprah with a 52 percent favorability rating and massive 72 percent favorability rating with Democrats. The latest Rasmussen poll shows Oprah with a 55 percent general favorability, and 27 percent “very favorable” rating.

“And yet despite that strong popularity return for the television personality, 69 percent of respondents to the March 2017 poll said she shouldn’t run for president.”

The short article includes the information that CNN cites two unnamed sources, both “close friends” of Oprah who “claim that she is ‘actively thinking’ about a presidential run”.

The left-leaning media will surely choose her.

Can the Democratic Party itself be far behind?

Will hers be safe hands to guide the ship of state through the tumult of a dangerous world?

That is the wrong question.

Ask not what she can do for your country. Ask only what your country can do for her.

Posted under Commentary, Race, Sex, United States, Videos by Jillian Becker on Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Tagged with , , , ,

This post has 2 comments.

Permalink

Two views of capitalism 4

At Townhall, John C. Goodman presents and discusses two views of capitalism as expounded by Professor Johnathan Haidt.

The two views are summed up by these videos, made by Professor Haidt.

Capitalism as Exploitation

Capitalism as Liberation

John Goodman comments:

Now I would argue that one of these views of capitalism is factually incorrect. It’s not just a matter of “political and moral values” [as Haidt asserts]. In fact, in a video presentation of his theory, Haidt shows a chart mapping per capita income throughout all of human history. The chart shows (and this should be well known to all economists) that up until the last few hundred years the average human lived on about a dollar a day – in modern terms. At times and places, they might have enjoyed two dollars a day. If they were really, really lucky they might have hit three dollars a day. But that was it.

In other words, for 100,000 years our ancestors lived at the subsistence level. And then [with the advent of the Industrial Revolution – ed] we got capitalism. By that I mean not just free exchange, but also the institutions of capitalism, including enforceable property rights …

In all its guises the exploitation theory has one central message: the reason why some people are poor is because other people are rich. Here is Paul Krugman explaining why middle income families don’t have higher incomes. …

Soaring incomes at the top were achieved, in large part, by squeezing those below: by cutting wages, slashing benefits, crushing unions, and diverting a rising share of national resources to financial wheeling and dealing. Perhaps more important still, the wealthy exert a vastly disproportionate effect on policy. And elite priorities — obsessive concern with budget deficits, with the supposed need to slash social programs — have done a lot to deepen the valley of despond.

Really? J K Rowling (author of the Harry Potter series) is the richest woman in the world. Did she get rich by “cutting wages, slashing benefits, crushing unions,” etc.? I thought she got rich by writing books. How about Oprah? Has she “slashed” any benefits lately? What about Bill Gates and Warren Buffett? When is the last time they were out there encouraging scabs to cross a picket line?

Krugman’s point about political influence is almost as silly as his view of the economy. Earth to Krugman: the real base of the Democratic Party (the party of the left) has become the ultra-wealthy. And their political goals are harmful to the middle class, but not in the way that Krugman imagines. …

The problem for Democrats is that the party is increasingly ruled by the “new oligarchs”  … [who]  are basically anti-job creation and anti-economic growth – which they see … as a threat to their life style. This puts them squarely at odds with the working class voters who used to be the backbone of the Democratic Party. …

The Democratic Party is [now] the party of the poor and the rich. It’s the middle class that is bolting and voting Republican. And what do the rich want from Democrats? Contra Krugman, they’re not demanding smaller deficits or smaller social programs or even lower taxes. What they want – in addition to looney environmentalism – is for government to protect their life style.

Once the plutocrats settle in a community they become fiercely anti-development and shape their communities in ways that price the middle class out of the housing market. As a result, wherever wealthy liberals tend to congregate, housing is more expensive …

Limousine liberals are a threat to the average worker. But not because they are wage-suppressing, union-busting, exploiters. It’s because their anti-capitalist goals are at odds with the aspirations of ordinary Americans.

It seems to be the case that most – probably all – of the successful entrepreneurs who live in Silicon Valley vote Democratic. Having achieved their own riches in the freedom of opportunity for the individual that the capitalist system gave them, they vote for socialism and the removal of individual freedom that it ensures, so others cannot do what they did.

Who really hates Obama? 2

Uncountable Republicans and conservatives express outrage over, loathing for, desperation about, fury with Obama, and are amply justified in doing so we believe.

But for sheer contempt for him and rage against him it would be hard to beat this rant – from the far left.

It comes from the pen, dipped in vitriol, of one David Michael Green, a professor of political science [!] at Hofstra University in New York.

His bitter denunciations and criticisms may in some instances coincide with ours, but they don’t of course arise for the same reasons. We deplore Obama’s rapid shifting of America to the left and his turning it into an impoverished, weak, welfare state.

Professor Green (how aptly named he is!) thinks that Obama is failing to take America far enough to the left, so that it is not rapidly becoming a disarmed, egalitarian utopia.

He hates Obama more for failing to transform America into a command-economy collective than we do for his failing to keep America free and strong.

He hates Obama so much – and this is truly astonishing – that he would rather have Sarah Palin as president if that would be the ultimate humiliation for ‘the little prick’.

That a man with such passionately leftist opinions as he obviously holds can become a professor of political science in an American university speaks volumes, if you’re looking for an explanation for how a disciple of the Marxist Saul Alinsky came to be elected to the presidency .

It can reasonably be assumed that the far left broadly shares the views uttered, or spat out, by Professor Green. But what did they expect? That as soon as he entered the Oval Office, Obama would nationalize every business, force the rural population on to collective farms, send all dissidents into re-education camps or forced-labor prisons, make heterosexual marriage illegal, execute Bush and Cheney, recall all American servicemen from Iraq and Afghanistan and punish them for having fought there, force Israel to surrender to Hamas, give trillions of dollars to the Third World to put out ‘the fire’ that the Greens claim is ‘burning up the world’, make us wait all day in line for a loaf of bread at a state store and put our names down for medical treatment at state-run hospitals in preparation for waiting patiently for years to be given the treatment that we might or might not eventually be allowed?

Has this Green, a professor of political science, never heard that politicians ‘cannot legislate too far ahead of public opinion’? Does he not realize, professor of political science though he is, that the Constitution and the institutions of government were designed to prevent such revolutionary change? The answer to both questions is, apparently not.

Here’s part of what he has to say (all of it can be found here):

You know, I’ve really been trying not to write an article every other week about all the things I don’t like about Barack Obama.

But the little prick is making it very hard.

Like any good progressive, I’ve gone from admiration to hope to disappointment to anger when it comes to this president. Now I’m fast getting to rage.

How much rage? I find myself thinking that the thing I want most from the 2010 elections is for his party to get absolutely clobbered, even if that means a repeat of 1994. And that what I most want from 2012 is for him to be utterly humiliated, even if that means President Palin at the helm. That much rage.

Did this clown really say on national television that “I did not run for office to be helping out a bunch of you know, fat cat bankers on Wall Street”?!?!

Really, Barack? So, like, my question is: Then why the hell did you help out a bunch of fat cat bankers on Wall Street?!?! Why the hell did you surround yourself with nothing but Robert Rubin proteges in all the key economic positions in your government? Why did you allow them to open a Washington branch of Goldman Sachs in the West Wing? Why have your policies been tailored to helping Wall Street bankers, rather than the other 300 million of us, who just happen to be suffering badly right now?

Are you freakin’ kidding me??? What’s up with the passive president routine, anyhow, Fool? …

But, really, are you going to spend the next three interminable years perfecting your whiney victim persona? I don’t really think I could bear that. Hearing you complain about how rough it all is, when you have vastly more power than any of us to fix it? Please. Not that.

Are you going to tell us that “I did not run for office to be shovel-feeding the military-industrial complex”? But what they’re just so darned pushy?

“…I did not run for office to continue George Bush’s valiant effort at shredding the Bill of Rights. It’s just that those government-limiting rules are so darned pesky.”

“…I did not run for office to dump a ton of taxpayer money into the coffers of health insurance companies. It’s just that they asked so nicely.”

“…I did not run for office to block equality for gay Americans. I just never got around to doing anything about it.”

“…I did not run for office to turn Afghanistan into Vietnam. I just didn’t want to say no to all the nice generals asking for more troops.”

Here’s a guy who was supposed to actually do something with his presidency, and he’s … being punked by John Boehner, for chrisakes. He’s being rolled by the likes of Joe Lieberman. He calls a come-to-Jesus meeting with Wall Street bank CEOs, and half of them literally phone it in. Everyone from Bibi Netanyahu to the Japanese prime minister to sundry Iranian mullahs is stomping all over Mr. Happy.

And he doesn’t even seem to realize it.

Did you see him tell Oprah that he gave himself “a good solid B+” for his first year in office? And that it will be an A, if he gets his healthcare legislation passed?

Somebody please pick me up and set me back on my chair, wouldya? …

I can’t even begin to describe how insulting Obama conducting a “jobs summit” is to me, or what an unbelievably ham-fisted piece of public relations that was for the White House, which is increasingly showing itself not just to be sickeningly regressive, but also fully inept. I think I speak for a whole lot of Americans when I say that, one year into his stewardship over a destroyed economy that was actually atomizing for at least six months before inauguration day, I don’t want my president sitting around a table, running a dog-and-pony show, pretending to kick around ideas on how to generate jobs. I wanted him to have those ideas, himself, before he was inaugurated. …

If Democrats think they’ll be screwed next November because of unemployment, wait till Congress passes this healthcare monstrosity. Or doesn’t. At this point, either way they’re gonna get slammed for it, and rightly so.

If they don’t pass anything, they will be seen as unable to govern. …

On the other hand, the Democrats and their hapless president are probably in worse shape if they actually pass this legislation. Especially now that it’s been stripped of nearly every real progressive reform imaginable, it has become an incredibly stupid bill, from the political perspective. …

This will be a total train wreck for the Democratic Party … You know, elite Republicans may be sociopaths, and they may be lower on the moral totem pole than your basic cannibal, but they’re not stupid. I bet they’re salivating at the idea that this thing passes. I bet they’d even have Olympia Snowe vote for it if necessary, just to put it over the top. They must be laughing their asses off at this gift. All they have to do is oppose it right down the line, then say “Told ya so!” at the next election, squashing the pathetic Demognats, one after the next. …

This is President Nothingburger’s great gift to America, along with doing nothing about jobs, doing nothing about the Middle East, nothing about civil liberties, nothing about civil rights, and now doing nothing at Copenhagen. Regarding the latter, the world is literally on fire, and he jets in, gives a speech haranguing the delegates that “Now is not the time for talk, now is the time for action”, then splits even before the vote in order to beat the snowstorm headed to the east coast that might delay him getting home to his comfy bed. I’m not kidding. You can’t make this shit up, man.

This guy is killing me, though at the same time I still can’t quite figure him out. …

Is he just massively deluded? I wouldn’t have thought so, but watching the guy give himself a very good grade for 2009 straight face and all during the same year he’s lost twenty points off his job approval rating, and at a moment when even blacks and gays are deserting him, you know, you have to wonder.

Is he happy just to be a one-term president just to say he’s been there and done that, and then sell some more books even if he is reviled as one of the worst in history? … Obama looked like he could’ve been something different. He ain’t. …

Fine and dandy. With the help of political enemies like this, the conservative right may regain the White House in 2012. Strange, though, to have to welcome such allies!