Trumpism triumphant? 2

Has the Kavanaugh affair united the Republican Party behind President Trump?

And if so, will it now defeat the ever more berserk Left?

Of the Republican reaction to the tactics of the Democrats opposing the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh’s appointment to the Supreme Court, Gavin Wax writes at Western Journal:

The silver lining in this disgusting spectacle is a unified GOP moving forward with the singular goal of crushing the left. The line in the sand has been drawn, and there is no turning back. Even the most stubborn Trump haters of the right see that now. The Kavanaugh hearing will be a seminal movement in this fractured era of politics, and if the GOP can muster the courage to get ferocious with their contemptible enemies, it can be the turning point toward Making America Great Again.

He sees the affair as a vindication of President Trump’s leadership. It’s not only the Kavanaugh victory that proves the Trumpian way is the right way, but it provides the moment for full realization:

Anyone watching intently during the Obama years could see what was forming on the left, but it has reached critical mass due to Trump’s meteoric success. People who do not closely follow politics are seeing what the left is really all about aside from that flowery veneer of tolerance and diversity. The average blue-collar supporter of Trump has their eyes wide open, never to be closed again. This is a once-in-a-lifetime moment that we have to capitalize upon while there is still time.

No turning back” for the GOP?  Never again will the average blue-collar worker believe the Democratic Party serves his interests?  Never again will the Republicans allow the Left an inch if by any means they can be stopped?

Well, it still depends on whether Republicans can “muster the courage to get ferocious”.

The writer hopes that “the most stubborn Trump haters of the right” see now how good is President Trump’s leadership is.

He hopes that certain Republican commentators who were against Donald Trump’s presidency have been brought by the Kavanaugh affair to see the light. They ought to have been, but he is not certain that they were:

Commentators like Erick Erickson, David French and John Podhoretz have to be realizing that Trump’s approach is vindicated. They can bemoan Trump for swatting the hornet’s nest and stirring up the left, but the communist threat is coming to destroy the lives of anyone who is to the right of Karl Marx. If you are white, Christian, conservative or a male (just one of these attributes is enough), they will target you and your family with a heinous smear campaign, and that will just be the beginning. Trumpism is currently the only viable alternative to the Orwellian machinations of the left.

How many  Congressional Republicans formerly antagonistic to, or unenthusiastic about, Donald Trump have come round to his side because of the Kavanaugh affair?

A new eclectic coalition of surprising allies has coalesced around the president.

The most vociferous defender of Kavanaugh during Thursday’s hearings was arguably South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham. Graham ran for president in 2016 largely as a wet blanket attempting to cool the Trump revolution but has come around in years since. Trump has also been able to hatch out solid working relationships with Mitch McConnell, Orrin Hatch, Rand Paul, Tom Cotton, and Mark Meadows — an interesting cross-section of political leaders. …. A coalition that seemed inconceivable just last year.

Some have been left behind — like now deceased former Sen. John McCain whose vendetta with Trump became personal, soon-to-be-gone Sens. Bob Corker and Jeff Flake who staked their careers on opposing Trump’s rise in the GOP, and Reps. Justin Amash and Walter Jones who went from constitutional heroes to pariahs over their stubborn opposition to the president — but the overwhelming consensus of the Republican Party is firmly behind Trump. Kavanaugh’s railroading has only strengthened Trump’s power over his constituency, and this party unity will be needed for what is to come.

If Kavanaugh’s confirmation was the convincing achievement, still it must be noted that Kavanaugh was not himself unwanted by Never Trumpers. The victory was not exactly a victory for Trumpism as such. Kavanaugh was “an establishment supported candidate”. 

In what may have been a fortuitous coincidence or was perhaps another example of 4-D chess, Trump picked an establishment supported candidate in Brett Kavanaugh as his second proposed Supreme Court nominee.

In fact, some Trump supporters did not consider Kavanaugh conservative enough:

Although some of Trump’s die-hard supporters were tepid on the pick at first, the attacks from the left quickly solidified him into a hero.

But –

He had the full-fledged support of the NeverTrump right from the outset because of his closeness to President George W. Bush …

So let’s enquire: what do Never Trumpers on the Right themselves have to say about warming to the president’s leadership?

What is the National Review saying?

The editor-in-chief of National Review, Rich Lowry, does not count himself a Never Trumper; but his colleagues, Ramesh Ponnuru, Jonah Goldberg, Bill Kristol and Stephen Hayes, firmly and sternly do.

Or have done.

Until now? Until the victory of President Trump, the Senate Republicans, and the new Supreme Court Justice himself, won the fierce and prolonged battle to get Justice Kavanaugh’s appointment confirmed?

It seems there has been a change of mind.

Significantly, the authorship of this National Review article is attributed to “The Editors”:

After one of the most intense political fights of the last two decades, Judge Brett Kavanaugh of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit has become Associate Justice Brett Kavanaugh of the United States Supreme Court. This is a good thing for the integrity of our Constitution, for elementary American norms, and for the long-term health of our political institutions.

Justice Kavanaugh has demonstrated throughout his career a firm adherence to a constitutionalist jurisprudence; indeed, that was the root of the opposition to him. He will undoubtedly stay true to this approach, which has guided him during his years on the D.C. Circuit and is evident in black-and-white in his hundreds of opinions. All of this was pushed to the side, though, in the final frenzy to destroy and defeat him. …

Judge Kavanaugh was not “on trial” in a formal sense. But that fact in no way undermines the practices and norms that mark formal trials. Presumption of innocence and an insistence on corroborating evidence are integral parts of our system because they work. Had the Democratic party prevailed in its attempt to set them aside, the precedent would have been disastrous.

Throughout this saga, the Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee maintained that their job was to investigate credible charges of wrongdoing and to determine whether they could be verified. Shamefully, their counterparts exhibited no such interest. It was unclear whether Judge Kavanaugh’s record was being examined for rape or for rudeness, for drinking or for defensiveness, for temperament or for truth. At times the lack of focus took on a Stalinist quality: “He did it,” Kavanaugh’s accusers insisted day in, day out, “but even if he didn’t, the vehemence with which he denied it is itself disqualifying.”

It is a testament to the fortitude of the Republican party that these conceits were rejected in the end. Donald Trump had the good sense to pick Kavanaugh, and then the determination to stick by him. …

In America we do not sacrifice individuals on the altar of collective guilt, and we do not entertain that illiberal alchemy by which “nobody can corroborate this” becomes “he did it and must pay”. When the Senate met yesterday to put a bow on this squalid affair, there remained as much evidence for Judge Kavanaugh’s unfitness as there had been on the day was nominated: none. To have rejected him despite this, [Senator Susan] Collins observed, would be to have abandoned “fundamental legal principles”.

The Senate refused to do so. The Justice prevailed, and so did justice.

The praise of Donald Trump for his “good sense” in picking Brett Kavanaugh, and his “determination” in sticking to his choice, does imply that “The Editors” of National Review, as a body, now approve of the president.

What then lies ahead?

Back to Gavin Wax who writes that “Trumpism is the only way forward”:

What is left of the Buckleyites thought that they and the “sane voices in the room” on the left could sweep this Trump embarrassment under the rug and head back to the politics of the past. That delusion is no longer tenable. The inmates run the asylum on the left, and every denizen must submit to every ridiculous trope regarding gender, sex, race, etc. or face the social consequences. Because groupthink is their default preset, nobody can speak up against this institutional insanity without getting cannibalized by the jackals. …

But –

The left is never going to capitulate. They have gone too far to stop now. They will only escalate things drastically from this point forward. They will repeat any lie — no matter how absurd, cruel or disgusting it may be — to stop Trump and his supporters. Anyone who believes in the Constitution, the rule of law, due process, and the presumption of innocence is a racist Nazi guilty of sexual assault. This is the future that we will live in if the left is successful, and it is probably worse than what Orwell envisioned in “1984″.

Remember, the left has many institutional advantages that are difficult to overcome. The demographic realities are on their side. The cultural downslide has already reached epidemic proportions. We cannot expect another Trump to come along and move things forward if he is ultimately stopped. This may be our final stand, and we have to move ever more boldly as a result. Trump has taught us that we have to be willing to fight as ruthlessly as the left in order to win.

If the Republican Party now fully accepts President Trump’s leadership; if Republicans at last have the stomach for a fight, or better still an appetite for it; if they engage the fight and if they win it, then the Kavanaugh hearing will have been “a seminal movement in this fractured era of politics” and a turning-point.

Now for the ferocious battle.

Winning 17

We had a commenter recently on our Facebook page who said that President Trump should “get off his ass” and do something. When we replied that he had achieved more in his first year than any other president in living memory, and against more deliberate hampering, blocking and resistance than any other president – and that he, the commenter,  only did not know this because he read the mainstream media which refused to report President Trump’s accomplishments – his further comment was a long string of hahahas.

As there must be millions who would also laugh at our assertion, it is time to list those accomplishments. And it is also time to name the conservatives who joined the hamperers, blockers and resisters in making it as hard for the president to achieve anything as they possibly could – out of sheer prejudice.

John Nolte has made such a list and named some of the most prominent guilty conservatives.

He writes at Breitbart:

Remember these names: Jonah Goldberg, David Frum, Bill Kristol, Rich Lowry, Max Boot, Mitt Romney, John Kasich, Joe Scarborough, Jeff Flake, Ben Sasse, Jennifer Rubin, George Will, Josh Jordan, Tom Nichols, Charles Cooke, Stephen Hayes, Tim Miller, John Podhoretz, Nicole Wallace, Steven Schmidt, Bret Stephens, Ross Douthat, Leon Wolf, David Brooks, Rick Wilson, Evan McMullin, Stuart Stevens, Red State, National Review, the Weekly Standard 

These are the so-called conservative men, women, and institutions who (among others) fought the hardest to sabotage Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, all in the unforgivable hope that Hillary Clinton would become president.

These are so-called conservatives who have, for nearly two years now, been promoting themselves and fundraising by smearing Trump as incompetent and “not a real conservative,” as a “Democrat in sheep’s clothing” — when, in fact, all of that best describes #NeverTrump.

These are the so-called conservatives who — after Trump’s first year in office — have now been proven as wrong as wrong can be. If their conservative credentials lost all credibility during a 2016 campaign during which they used whatever residual influence they had to hand the Oval Office to Clinton, the proven results of the past year should mean that they are written off forever as idiots, quacks, mercenaries, and con men.

Trump has had, in my opinion, the most successful first year of any president since Ronald Reagan. And not just a consequential first year that has already built a legacy, but conservative first year. Below, I do my best to list these accomplishments, but there are so many, forgive me if a few are missed:

  • Real, honest-to-goodness tax reform and cuts — the most consequential in 30 years.
  • Opening ANWR for oil exploration, an accomplishment few can appreciate who do not remember the 90s and what a sacred cow this is for the left.
  • Killing the Obamacare mandate that brutalized those making less than $50,000 a year.
  • The Islamic State (ISIS) has been decimated. [We would say obliterated– ed]
  • After a 2016 of just 1.9 percent GDP growth, we have now had two quarters in a row of growth over three percent; predictions for the final quarter of 2017 are as high as four percent.
  • [The appointment of] Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch, who has already proven himself the perfect replacement for Justice Antonin Scalia.
  • The Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines are a go — which means tens of thousands of jobs.
  • A record number of judicial appointments on the appeals courts.
  • The end of the War on Coal.
  • A surge in coal mining after 2016’s decline.
  • The end of the federal government’s violating the religious conscience through indefensible Obamacare mandates involving birth control and abortion pills.
  • The civil rights movement for school choice is getting the green light throughout the country.
  • Illegal immigration is way down.
  • The stock market hit record highs 70 times in 2017, rising 5,000 points for the first time ever.
  • The long-overdue recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
  • We are free of the awful Paris climate treaty.
  • Regulatory reform that is just getting started, but it has already had a hugely positive effect on our economy.
  • Withdrawal from the Global Compact on Migration, which undercut American sovereignty.
  • Return of nearly two million acres to the state Utah that the federal government had stolen.
  • A $250 billion trade deal with China.
  • Many of our NATO allies are finally paying their dues.
  • Consumer confidence is the best we have seen in more than a decade.
  • Pulled us out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) in favor of the American worker and sovereignty.
  • Trump has managed to get China to help rein in North Korea. [To some extent – ed]
  • Black unemployment is at a 17-year low.
  • Hispanic unemployment is at an all-time low.
  • Overall unemployment is at [four point] one percent.
  • Manufacturing jobs boom.
  • Standing up for persecuted Christian minorities in the Middle East. [More needs to be done, but it’s a start – ed]
  • Promoting Christmas.
  • Banning [immigration] or demanding stronger vetting [of immigrants] from [predominantly Muslim] countries most likely to [export] terrorists.
  • Housing sales are at an 11-year high.
  • Ban on transgender military recruits.

Now, you need to close your eyes and imagine what the list above would look like had #NeverTrump won the day and made Hillary Clinton president.

Now, try to imagine any one of the 16 Republicans who competed [with Trump] for the 2016 nomination accomplishing all of this, or even having the courage to stand up to a media onslaught to accomplish all of this, or even being, yes, conservative enough to do things like pull us out of the Paris climate agreement (something the Republican establishment’s failed 2012 nominee, Mitt Romney, opposes).

Trump’s conservatism, his competence, his willingness to stand up to gale force media hate to keep his promises, is unlike anything we have seen since 1981.

In the pursuit of only their own grift, personal fame, the gratification of bottomless egos, and a soft place to land among the Beautiful People, #NeverTrump lied to us, took our money, and fought tooth and nail to extend the disastrous Obama presidency into a third term.

And now, just one year into Trump’s presidency, #NeverTrump has once again been exposed for who they truly are — bitter, dishonest saboteurs more interested in their lofty place at the trough than the future of their own country.

All these bitter clingers have left now is to further degrade outlets such as the once-necessary National Review, a once-cherished laboratory of vibrant conservative ideas and thought, which is now a hangout for sore losers to keep rewriting the same column over and over and over again about how pure and virtuous they are, as they scold the rest of us for fighting for and sticking with a president who has delivered in ways they told us was not even within the realm of possibility.

So now the real conservatives can laugh – the longest string of triumphant hahahas they can manage while their breath lasts.

*

Later: WND provides an even longer list: 168 accomplishments.

The silence of the shepherds 8

Are the Christian churches doing anything about the bloody, growing, relentless persecution of Christians in Arab and other Islamic countries?

No.

The Pope?

No.

The Archbishop of Canterbury?

No.

Some at least of the innumerable Christian denominations in America?

No.

The primates of the Russian Orthodox Church?

No.

Are priests and parsons at least preaching against it from their pulpits?

No report or even a rumor of any such sermon has reached our ears.

Why not, we wonder. And then we recall that Christians make a virtue out of being persecuted. But of retribution, judgment of the persecutors, stopping the evil – nothing. Maybe because their man-god, in a sermon on a mountain or a plain, reputedly enjoined them not to resist evil. Thus giving evil a completely free hand.

Surely the United States is doing something about it? At least objecting to it verbally?

No.

What about diplomats and churchmen in the countries where the persecution is happening?

Never! No Western diplomat would risk being caught criticizing anything Muslims do. And Middle  Eastern churchmen, who cannot help noticing the dwindling numbers of their flocks and even hear cries in the endless night of their consciences, have found ingenious ways to blame Israel – ie the Jews. It’s an old tradition that they’re comfortable with.

Try Googling the subject. Dig hard and you’ll find some crumbs.

You’ll find Pakistani Christians have protested recently over the massacre of some 85 of their number, killed coming out of church by a couple of Muslim suicide bombers. Some of the protestors have since been beaten up by their Muslim neighbors for daring to complain.

And you can, if you search, find reports of thousands of Nigerian Christians being killed by Muslims in regular weekend raids – and on some week days too. The Muslims – who are passionately against literacy – cut up their victims with machetes and throw small children on to fires. (See also our posts: Christians murdered by Muslims, March 9, 2010; Muhammad’s command, March 30, 2010; Suffering children, May 11, 2011; Victims of religion, October 16, 2011; Acts of religion in Nigeria revisited, October  16, 2011; Christians slaughtered by Muslims in Nigeria, October 17, 2011; Boko Haram, the Muslim terrorists of Nigeria, November 10, 2011; More acts of religion in Nigeria, January 19, 2012; More Christians burnt to death by Muslims, July 11, 2013.)

What about those great humanitarians, the Communists, who fill Western universities and run a few countries? After all, the professed essence of their creed is concern for the underdog. But no, the butchery, the torture, the abduction of children – none of it bothers them. To their way of thinking, Christians can never be authentic underdogs. But all Muslims are, however rich and powerful many of them may be.

What about the media? At least the Christian media surely …?

Here’s a fine example from a Christian website. It starts off promisingly, but soon gets round to denying that the persecutions are due only to religious intolerance and explaining that the police who should protect Christians are unfortunately otherwise engaged; then seems to criticize Western Churches for find a Christian bright side to look on – the mistaken idea that converts can be won from among observers of the tortures and killings – but drops suddenly into pious reflections of its own.

I have been surprised that the media has actually covered many of the church burnings that have taken place. The reason that I am surprised is because in most of the uprisings and protests that have taken place throughout the Middle East, church burning and persecution of Christians has taken place without the media reporting on it. In Egypt’s case, the Muslim Brotherhood has used the crackdown on the protests as an opportunity to loot and burn churches and Christian businesses. The Daily Star, Lebanon’s English language newspaper said attacks on churches coincided with assaults on police stations, leaving most police “pinned down to defend their stations or reinforcing others rather than rushing to the rescue of Christians under attack”.

The reality is that the persecution in Egypt is just the most popular of a long list of these things happening currently all over the world. Statistics show that this year alone 163,000 people will die because of their faith. It is estimated that by 2025 that number could rise to 210,000 per year.

So they’re expecting a further increase in the productivity of this appalling industry? Is this an example of pessimism or optimism?

There is any number of reasons for persecution, and it is not just because of religious differences, although that usually plays a major role. Other reasons include politics, finances, anti-Western bias, and racism. Many times all of these issues are rolled up into one that supports the persecution taking place. There is also a disturbing myth among Western Christians that persecution causes the church to grow. In fact, since persecution in the country of Turkey began the percentage of Christians has dropped from 32% to 0.2%. Syria has seen a drop from 40% to 10%. Iran saw a drop of 15% to 2%. Persecution is something that will always be with the church and will even ramp up as the Great Commission comes to completion, but it is not good. Persecution is the result of a fallen world and a real enemy that must be fought against. This enemy is not flesh and blood, though, so our fight must take place in the heavenly realm through prayer.

Yeah, good idea. That always helps.

The atrocities that we are seeing on television should prompt us to fight the spiritual battle. We must first pray that God would be glorified. God is not surprised by what is taking place in Egypt. We need to pray that the believers and Christian workers there would have faith and use this as an opportunity to share the love of Christ with others. We also need to use this as motivation for ourselves individually to get better informed and learn about the persecuted church so that we would know how to pray. Lastly, I would challenge you to consider going to these places. There is nothing quite like a real, physical hug to encourage our brothers and sisters in Christ. It could be your visit and encouraging words that gives strength to the church to continue fighting the good fight.

So if prayer fails, a hug may do it.

There are a few honorable exceptions among journalists. Raymond Ibrahim, the Front Page Magazine columnist, and himself a Copt from Egypt, is keeping the record and writing regularly and fully about the subject. His articles are well worth reading.

And an atheist, Nat Hentoff, writes:

Largely absent from nearly all our sources of news and commentary is deep, continuing coverage, if any, of the horrifying massacres of Christians in Egypt and especially Syria and the burning down of their churches.

The world’s most prominent Christian, Pope Francis, has denounced the violence, but our media has mostly ignored him [on this subject] …

One of the few penetrating protesters of this violence is Rich Lowry, editor of the National Review:

For the first time in 1,600 years, they didn’t pray this past Sunday at the Virgin Mary and Anba Abraam monastery in a village in southern Egypt. Islamists firebombed and looted the monastery, which dates back to the fifth century. For good measure, they destroyed a church inside. They then announced that they would be converting the monastery into a mosque. (Egypt’s Anti-Christian Pogrom, Lowry, National Review, Aug. 20).

… And as for our president: “In his remarks after the bloodshed began in Egypt, President Barack Obama relegated his concern over the anti-Christian attacks to a three-word dependent clause at the end of one sentence.”

As for daily life in Egypt, Morning Star News reported that earlier this month, “a Coptic Christian girl walking home from a Bible class at her church was shot and killed … in Cairo by an unidentified gunman, human rights activists said.” The girl’s uncle, a church pastor, said “he didn’t know for sure if the shooting was religiously motivated but quickly added that violence against Christians ‘seems to be normal’ in Egypt now” (Coptic Christian Girl Shot Dead in Egypt, Morning Star News, Aug. 9).

Meanwhile in Syria, “the nation’s 2 million-plus Christians are caught in the middle of a Muslim war. Jihadist rebels threaten and kidnap them while coercing others to become Muslims. Government troops loyal to President Bashar Assad order them to fight the opposition or face death” (Christians are in the crosshairs of bloody Muslim wars in Mideast, Rowan Scarborough, the Washington Times, Aug. 1).

But in spite of all this, says John Hayward of Human Events, “the international community never seems terribly exercised about the persecution of Christian minorities. … The same advanced democracies that had agonized internal discussions about whether freedom of speech should be curtailed, in order to avoid offending Muslims, don’t seem particularly angry about the destruction of Coptic churches, and other Christian property. Egyptian mobs are targeting Christian property for destruction by writing Islamist graffiti on the walls.”

But, thankfully, there are still those who are angry and vocal about this violence toward Christians. One of these media commentators who persistently denounce the absence of sustained American outrage at this merciless pogrom is Michael Savage, host of the Cumulus Radio program “The Savage Nation”.

Meanwhile, in this democratic country, will our Congress’s cold indifference continue? And will the nation’s religious leaders and activists – not just Christians – be confronted by those they lead? Will they say something and try to save what’s left of those Christian minorities in Egypt and Syria?

No.

As for the rest of us, are there any street demonstrations coming in front of the United Nations? Or does the very idea of insistent involvement from the U.N. – its reason for being – provoke anything but sardonic laughter at the prospect that its members will do anything lasting at all?

No.