For Freedom 3

Victor Davis Hanson explains why he supports the presidency of Donald Trump:

Posted under Capitalism, liberty, United States, US Constitution by Jillian Becker on Monday, March 18, 2019

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Parody 15

Have you yet picked a victim group with which you “identify”?

If you haven’t picked one at least, you’re doomed, comrade!

You’ve gotta be one of the oppressed in America now, or you’re nothing. No, of course you don’t have to actually be oppressed, you’ve just got to belong to a group that can say it’s oppressed because it’s not white and male.

Why should only those who have actually been oppressed have all the kudos? It’s enough that some women – or all women some time ago – were kept down. If you are a woman, that’s all you need to stake your claim. Same goes of course if you’re black, brown, homosexual, lunatic, or criminal. Others like you had it rough, so you are owed.

If you’re currently homeless, an illegal resident, an alcoholic, a drug addict, or a member of M-13 or al-Qaeda, you can pass jail and go straight to the community chest for your hand-out.

But our advice to you is choose a race complaint. The most solid claim, the claim recognized as being top priority right now, is a race claim. Then you have only to put a finger in the political breeze – the one blowing from the left – to learn which race is commonly agreed to be most “unsafe” while whites occupy the seats of power.

It will be better still if you also “belong” to a radical ideology. It’s an add-on, but could make all the difference to how much respect and promotion you have a right to demand. You could probably hit the jackpot this season if your chosen ideology is Islam or Communism. Being Muslim or Communist might even get you a pass for a while if you are still white and/or male.

But hurry. The wind changes often. More often than the weather changes (though it all tends, they say, towards heating the earth to destruction within 12 years). It could, for all you know, change before you can say “Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez”.

Victor Davis Hanson writes at American Greatness:

For progressives that revolutionary purity now is defined by race is an ironic return to the values of the Old South, which sought to calibrate privilege by skin color. The reprehensible Confederate idea of the whitest has now morphed into the least white being the most authentically grieved and thus deserving of the greatest reparatory privileges — the constant, of course, remains that superficial appearance based on race trumps all individual characteristics.

What started with affirmative action became “diversity’, which in turn during the Obama Administration was redefined not as minority groups with either historical grievances against the majority or accepted claims of ongoing racial victimization. Instead authentically diverse were all who claimed to be racially or linguistically distinguishable from the white majority.

Then diversity as a revolutionary moment was further expanded by including gays and woke women, which essentially took the initial African-American population whose plight was the aim of affirmative action and expanded it to in theory a majority of about 200 million Americans who were either non-white or women or both.

Now the revolution cannot figure out its own hierarchy of authentic grievance groups. So it has agreed on a loose “intersectionality”, in which over a dozen and often overlapping victim cadres agree that each degree of non-white-maleness adds authenticity and become a force multiplier of left-wing radicalism.

Among leftists, Kamala Harris, as black and female, trumps Cory Booker who is just black, who trumps Elizabeth Warren who is exposed as just female, who trumps Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders who are reverse threefers as white, male, and heterosexual. …

In such a revolutionary scramble to be the most diverse and hard left, the logical trajectory ends up with a race to transcend the physical limits of victimhood.

So now appears Jussie Smollett.

He is not just left-wing, but a rabid hater of Donald Trump. And he is not just black, but gay as well. And he is not just a victim, but a hyper-victim of white bullies. And not just bullies, but bullies with MAGA hats. And he is not just a victim of white red-hats, but a victim of ski-masked racists. And not just of their blows, but of (frozen?) bleach. And not just of bleach and blows, but of lynch rope as well. And they did not just hit, but smeared and slurred. And not just MAGA sloganeering, but anti-gay, anti-black—and perhaps, worst of all, in our performance society, they slandered his “Empire” TV show!

Progressives are like a worn rope being pulling apart at both ends. At one end, there is an effort to radicalize prior radicalization, and on the other end victimhood is heading toward parody.

And what is left is the emblematic Jussie Smollett—the logical result of the revolution, who alone has staked out the only authentic and ultimate revolutionary stance: nihilism—a state where no one can possibly rival Jussie’s revolutionary grievance credentials because they cannot exist in a reality based world.

Or put another way, when no one is revolutionary enough, the revolutionary auditors end up ridiculous in their zeal for power and celebrity — sort of like Orwell’s radical pigs finally prancing about on two legs and feasting on silver, sort of like Jussie Smollett leveraging the ultimate state of victimhood for a better deal on “Empire”.

Parody, yes.

Come to think of it, parody is the non-stop Performance Art of the American Left.

Parody of oppression. Parody of victimhood.

Of leadership. Of scholarship. Of justice. Of femininity and masculinity. Of diversity. Of inclusion. Of tolerance. Of equality. Of anti-racism. Of anti-fascism.

Of being revolutionaries. Of being liberal. Of being democrats.

Of being Americans.

.

(Hat-tip to Cogito for the VDH article)

Heading to a nightmare 1

Mark Levin interviews Victor Davis Hanson. They talk chiefly about the misuse of freedom to destroy freedom. Hanson muses on how many of those who have gained most from it – such as the tech billionaires – now vote against it; how the Left wants equality above everything else, so would rather all were equally poor, even very poor, than that some were very rich while the “poor” had ample of what they needed; how the opinion of the Left surrounds us and compels us towards a nightmare – a radical egalitarian society. (Since we agree with so much that is said by both the interlocutors, we’ll overlook Levin saying that “human beings were created by God”.)

Posted under Commentary, Conservatism, Leftism, liberty, Videos by Jillian Becker on Sunday, December 23, 2018

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For Europe, yes, the end is nigh 8

As we and other conservatives have often said, both in sorrow and in anger, Europe is killing itself.

Since the beginning of this century, writers who watch population numbers – notably Mark Steyn – have been stating plainly that the indigenous European populations are dying out. At the same time – partly because of this shrinkage and the resulting “need” for workers enough to maintain their socialist welfare states – European political leaders have been importing multitudes of Asians and Africans.

Obviously a demographic change does not save Europe, it hastens its destruction. Alien  – and inferior, yes, far inferior – cultures replace its own. Yet Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany, and most other European leaders, keep bringing the aliens in. They will not not consider stopping it. Some long for Europe to cease being a “white” continent.

At last a few are becoming aware that it is a tragedy they are inflicting on their own nations. They may even admit they don’t like it. But only a very few will try to do anything to stop it.

Interestingly, one of the European nations whose government does not yet acknowledge that catastrophe is fast approaching, is Britain. Britain! That used to be the Land of Common Sense.  The land of realists. Now the land of self-deluders?

Voices are announcing from the high towers of the continent (soon to be totally replaced by actual muezzins calling the faithful of Islam to prayer) that the end is nigh. But they  are not cries of repentance or despair. Not the cries of the reluctantly doomed.

It seems they just want it to be over. This civilization thing.

Giulio Meotti writes at Gatestone:

The days of European strength are over. Because of low birth rates, Europe is dramatically shrinking. …

Even President Macron of France, who continues to call for more immigration from the Third World, knows that it hurts Europe, hastens the end of Europe. And, what is more, he deplores the fact that it does. Hear him, hear the cry of dying Europe as it goes on deliberately killing itself.

In 2017, Macron called Africa’s problems “civilizational” and lamented that they “have seven or eight children per woman”. In a second speech at the Gates Foundation last week, Macron said: “Present me the woman who decided, being perfectly educated, to have seven, eight or nine children.” The question Macron implicitly raised is: How can Europe manage its own educated people with their low birth rates while confronting massive African and Middle Eastern fertility and immigration? It seems that Europe is in a demographic struggle with the rest of the world, and can only lose.

It seems that Europe has also lost all confidence in its hard-won Enlightenment values, such as personal freedoms, reason and science replacing superstition, and the separation of church and state.

These are critical, if Europe truly wishes to survive. The distinguished historian Victor Davis Hanson recently wrote:

Judged by the great historical determinants of civilizational power — fuel, energy, education, demography, political stability, and military power — Europe is waning. It is spending a mere 1.4% of its collective GDP on defense … And with a fertility rate of less than 1.6%, Europe is slowly shrinking and aging — hence the short-sighted immigration policy of Angela Merkel who apparently sees immigration also as a solution to the demography crisis and a shortcut to low-cost labor.

However, as Walter Laqueur wrote, “even if Europe’s decline is irreversible, there is no reason that it should become a collapse”.

How does one avoid that collapse?

At a recent European meeting, Italy’s interior minister, Matteo Salvini, who heads the anti-immigration League party, said:

I’ve heard colleagues say that we need immigration because the population of Europe is getting older, but I have a completely different viewpoint … I believe that I’m in government in order to see that our young people have the number of children that they used to a few years ago and not to transplant the best of Africa’s youth to Europe. Maybe in Luxembourg they need to do this, but in Italy we need to help people have more children, rather than bring in modern-day slaves (from Africa) to replace the children we’re not having.

Then, directly addressing an interruption from Luxembourg’s foreign minister, Jean Asselborn, Salvini added:

I calmly answer your point of view which is different from mine … If in Luxembourg you need a new immigration, I prefer to keep Italy for the Italians and start to make children again.

Salvini evidently sees what to expect from Italy’s future. Under unchanged conditions, Italy’s population could collapse, reaching just over 16 million inhabitants compared to 59 million today. …

Europe’s establishment is … divided between the so-called “Europeists,” who believe that new migrants are necessary to stop the EU’s demographic collapse, and the “Euroskeptics” who want to overcome it on their own. Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, for instance, has called on Europeans to stop the “demographic decline” by investing more in traditional families.

Meanwhile, Italian Catholic Archbishop Gian Carlo Perego has said:

The challenge for Italy is to reconcile a country that is dying with young people who come from elsewhere, in order to begin a new history. If we close our door to migrants, we will disappear.

Point is, as Italians they will disappear anyway.

Salvini proposed another idea …

A country which does not create children is destined to die … We have created a ministry of the family to work on fertility, nurseries, on a fiscal system which takes large families into account. At the end of this mandate, the government will be measured on the number of newborns more than on its public debt.

At stake, Salvini said, is Italy’s “tradition, our story, our identity” – the left is using the fertility crisis as an “excuse” to “import immigrants”.

Another Catholic bishop, Andrew Nkea Fuanya of Mamfe, Cameroon, recently said about low birth rates in Europe:

It’s a very big thing. And I will dare to say that, especially with the backdrop of the Islamic invasion, if you look through history, where the Church slept, got diverted away from the Gospel, Islam took the advantage and came in. This is what we are seeing in Europe, that the Church is sleeping, and Islam is creeping in … Europe is being Islamized, and it will affect Africa.

But Christianity cannot argue Islam down. One irrational creed cannot prove itself truer than another.

Nor was it Christianity that made Europe great, however often and insistently “Judeo-Christian values” are given the credit.

Pre-Christian Greece and Rome began Europe’s greatness, western Christianity suppressed it, the Enlightenment revived it and brought our civilization to its glory. 

Europe’s decline and transformation can also be seen in France. According to new statistics released by the French National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies, Mohammed and several other traditional Muslim names now top the list of most popular baby names in the French department of Seine-Saint-Denis (1.5 million residents). It is noteworthy that two journalists with the mainstream newspaper Le Monde, Gérard Davet and Fabrice Lhomme, have just published a book entitled Inch’allah : l’islamisation à visage découvert (If Allah Wills: The Exposed Face of Islamization), an investigation of the “Islamization” of the Seine-Saint-Denis area.

Meanwhile, an investigation published in July by the weekly L’Express showed that in France, “between 2000 and 2016, the number of children with at least one foreign parent increased from 15 to 24 percent.”

Germany too notices the population change:

Die Welt reported that, according to the Federal Statistical Office, in Western Germany, 42% of children under the age of six now come from a migrant background. …

Walter Laqueur wrote:

…uncontrolled immigration was not the only reason for the decline of Europe. But taken together with the continent’s other misfortunes, it led to a profound crisis; a miracle might be needed to extract Europe from these predicaments.

Both Matteo Salvini and [the French writer] Michel Houellebecq have pointed out that the drama of an aging and tired Europe is not a partisan or electoral issue; it is a civilizational one. This issue will also decide the future of the European Union, which the open-borders policy might wipe out.

Time is running out. As Houellebecq said …:

The advance of Islam is just beginning, because demography is on its side and because Europe, which has stopped having children, has entered a process of suicide. And it is not really a slow suicide. Once you have arrived at a birth rate of 1.3 or 1.4, then in reality things go very fast.

(Italy’s rate, 1.35 in 2016. Spain’s, 1.33 in the same year.)

Salvini is one of the few trying to save his nation. It is hard to see how he can succeed. The collapse that Walter Laqueur thought was avoidable, proceeds apace.

Our civilization may only survive in America. The Left came close to destroying it here too, but President Trump was elected in time to save it. At least for a while. If the Left regains power, the fatal self-inflicted European disease, brought on by socialism and worsened by Islam and Third World immigration, will all too probably destroy America too.

Under a lidless gaze from high dark towers 1

Is the American Left totalitarian in its ideology, policies, inclination?

Victor Davis Hanson thinks it is. He writes (in part) at National Review:

A definition of totalitarianism might be the saturation of every facet of daily life by political agendas and social-justice messaging.

At the present rate, America will soon resemble the dystopias of novels such as 1984 and Brave New World in which all aspects of life are warped by an all-encompassing ideology of coerced sameness.

Or rather, the prevailing orthodoxy in America is the omnipresent attempt of an elite — exempt from the consequences of its own ideology thanks to its supposed superior virtue and intelligence — to mandate an equality of result.

We expect their 24/7 political messaging on cable-channel news networks, talk radio, or print and online media. And we concede that long ago an NPR, CNN, MSNBC, or New York Times ceased being journalistic entities as much as obsequious megaphones of the progressive itinerary.

But increasingly we cannot escape anywhere the lidless gaze of our progressive lords, all-seeing, all-knowing from high up in their dark towers.

When there is a Republican president, a Republican Congress, a Republican majority in the Supreme Court, and a majority of the states (33 of the 50) have Republican governors, does the Left have the power to inflict its “political agendas and social-justice messaging” on America?

The answer is yes. The faithful do it from inside government agencies.

The Peter Strzok–Lisa Page texts, along with the careers of former FBI director James Comey and his deputy Andrew McCabe, reveal a politicized and in some sense rotten FBI hierarchy, beholden far more to its own exalted sense of a progressive self than merely to investigating crimes against the people.

Lois Lerner was a clumsy reflection of how the IRS long ago became weaponized in service to auditing deplorables. Former CIA director John Brennan and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper used their supposedly nonpartisan positions to further political agendas. That each in his own way is clownish does not mitigate their rank efforts to graft intelligence agencies onto political causes.

The same deterioration is true of many in the Department of Justice, who, along with the FBI, misled FISA-court justices, as if that were the only, or perhaps the easiest, way to obtain politically driven surveillance on U.S. citizens. Americans now are woke to the reality that straying too much into the forbidden zone guarantees that their communications can be monitored on the pretense that they’re colluding with some nefarious power. Yet if foreigners are the menace, why did our proverbial best and brightest traffic with a paid foreign spy at election time to sabotage a political campaign, then trump even the improper use of electronic surveillance with the insertion of paid informants?

They do it through the social media companies.

Google, Facebook, and Twitter are facing accusations of censoring social-media accounts and massaging Internet searches according to their progressive political agendas. The masters of the universe have given us the stereotype of 20- and 30-something social-warrior geeks, fiddling with their algorithms to virtue-signal their left-wing fides to a global audience. …

First-time congressional candidate Elizabeth Heng, a conservative from central California, found her video ad blocked on Facebook and Twitter. Apparently, her description of the Cambodian holocaust that her parents fled was too graphic or politically incorrect, or both. But then again, in California, everything is politicized, from plastic straws to single-user restrooms, in an Orwellian effort to distract us from the fact that we do not have enough water, usable roads, or workable public schools to remain a civilized state.

They do it through the news media and the institutions of education. They do it through”newspeak” – the control of vocabulary.

Language is especially enlisted to disguise bothersome reality. During the Obama administration, no one would ever have known from “overseas contingency operations,” “man-caused disaster”, “workplace disasters”, and “holy struggles” that radical Islamic terrorists were seeking to kill Westerners from San Bernardino to Paris. As in the case of illegal aliens, undocumented aliens, illegal immigrants, undocumented immigrants, immigrants migrants, the progressive rationale is that anyone killed or harmed by a terrorist or migrant is usually a nobody and so an acceptable casualty in the greater war against incorrect speech and attitude.

When our public colleges now find that an increasing number of newly admitted students cannot do college-level work when they begin their courses, administrators drop the old idea of catch-up “remedial” classes or compensatory “remediation” courses. The new language conveys that students are now suddenly qualified, or at least it virtue-signals the university’s effort to be suitably sensitive to the fact that in California nearly half of those entering the CSU system cannot read or compute at what previously had been thought to be a college level.

And since the Left is now dedicated to the destruction of “white privilege” and the demotion of the white race, Whites on the Left announce from their dark towers that they are not white:

Our very names and identities have become politicized. Desperate to highlight their progressive purity (or to enhance careers), politicians sometimes reinvent their nomenclatures and ancestries to suggest solidarity with those deemed racially, ethnically, or economically oppressed. … [Is] their intent to pose as poorer, more victimized Americans without actually having to become poorer or more victimized?

Senator Elizabeth Warren claimed falsely — albeit not quite in the clumsy fashion of left-wing political activist and professor Ward Churchill — that she was part Native American. Socialist New York state senate candidate Julia Salazar recently and falsely rebranded herself as a virtual foreign-born immigrant. Was their intent to pose as poorer, more victimized Americans without actually having to become poorer or more victimized?

White-male aspirant for a Texas Senate seat Patrick Francis O’Rourke has used the Latino nickname “Beto,” probably on the assumption that “Beto O’Rourke” might ensure a little more street cred among Texas’s Latino voters. I suppose “Pat O’Lopez” would be too shameless? But then again, California Senate candidate Kevin de León has added both a “de” and an accent to remind voters that he is not just an Anglicized Kevin Leon who could be mistaken for a third-generation Portuguese American.

Americans have long accepted that Hollywood movies no longer seek just to entertain or inform, but to indoctrinate audiences by pushing progressive agendas. That commandment also demands that America be portrayed negatively — or better yet simply written out of history. Take the new film First Man, about the first moon landing. Apollo 11 astronaut Neil Armstrong became famous when he emerged from The Eagle, the two-man lunar module, and planted an American flag on the moon’s surface. Yet that iconic act disappears from the movie version. (At least Ryan Gosling, who plays Armstrong, does not walk out of the space capsule to string up a U.N. banner.)

Gosling claimed that the moon landing should not be seen as an American effort. Instead, he advised, it should be “widely regarded as a human achievement” — as if any nation’s efforts or the work of the United Nations in 1969 could have pulled off such an astounding and dangerous enterprise.  …

Julia Salazar, whom Hanson refers to, is a “Democratic Socialist” running for a Democratic Party seat in the New York State Senate. She claimed for unexplained reasons to be a Jewish immigrant from Colombia, though she was born to a Catholic family in Miami and is intensely anti-Semitic. When the Jewish periodical The Tablet exposed her lies, “the response from Salazar and her supporters was to accuse the Jewish community of racism”. They – 

” … insisted that as a ‘woman of color’, she was a victim of Jewish racism. The Democratic Socialists of America backed their candidate and repeated her anti-Jewish slurs.”

– So writes Daniel Greenfield at Front Page. 

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, another “Democratic Socialist”, is a rich man’s daughter who pretends to be a low-waged resident of the Bronx, where she has won the Democratic primary and  will be elected to Congress in November.

So our betters who claim the moral high ground and know what’s best for us, are liars, slanderers, poseurs, hypocrites, illiterates, and subversives. 

And they are would-be totalitarians, those up there in the dark towers.

Waiting to see if the elephant in the room can be swept under the carpet 3

Evidence of collusion between a US presidential candidate and Russians has been found aplenty. 

Only, the candidate was not Donald Trump, it was Hillary Clinton. 

Victor Davis Hanson discusses this at American Greatness, and concludes:

Mueller originally was appointed due to the contrived leaks from the Steele dossier — a misnamed document that was more likely cobbled together by Glenn Simpson and his wife of Fusion GPS for purposes of destroying Donald Trump’s candidacy and then presidency. Mueller must have analyzed carefully what amounts to this font of his entire investigation. And yet his team has so far shown no interest in whether their own foundational document was used fraudulently to obtain FISA warrants.

Mueller’s lawyers show little concern for whether Christopher Steele himself colluded with Russians to find his dirt, or whether Hillary Clinton’s hiring of Fusion GPS and Steele constituted a sort of Russian collusion in and of itself — or whether Steele was mostly a fraud whose distant espionage past was seen by the creative writers at Fusion GPS as useful window dressing in efforts to peddle and seed the fictitious dossier as the work of serious spooks.

Much less does Mueller worry whether John Brennan, former CIA Director, improperly seeded the dossier to various agencies to ensure it reached the media before the election, or whether FBI Director James Comey lied about its pivotal importance in obtaining a FISA warrant, or why Bruce Ohr, the fourth highest official in the Justice Department, before and after the election, was meeting with a fired Christopher Steele — supposed severed from FBI support — to pass along his further gossip and dirt to the FBI, fueled by the suppressed fact that Ohr’s wife was working with Steele and was a Fusion GPS operative intent on seeing her “research” fertilized in the right government agencies to delegitimize Trump.

… Mueller sought with the dossier to find wrongdoing elsewhere, when it was right under his nose all along.

Robert Mueller’s legacy … will be one of willful blindness: he saw nothing ethically or legally wrong, or dangerous to the republic, in a bought and fictional dossier that fueled … his own reason to be [special counsellor investigating “Trump collusion with Russia”], and in various ways was central to an historic [Obama] government effort to surveille, to infiltrate, to undermine, and to discredit a political campaign first and later to derail an elected presidency.

If Hillary Clinton’s complicated conspiracy involving collusion with Russians is not itself a crime, there was many a crime of fraud, deception, cheating, leaking, breaking rules as the conspirators implemented their foul plot.

But will the guilty be brought to justice? Will Americans know what happened – how dishonest were the people they trusted to keep them safe?

If there are to be no indictments, will the facts at least become generally known? Or is it possible that the Clinton-supporting mass media and the indoctrinators of distorted History in the schools and academies can keep the nation in perpetual ignorance of it? They seem to think they can.

On the snobbery of egalitarians 1

Arthur Ochs Sulzberger, the publisher of that scurrilous daily, the New York Times, is a white male.

So why does he appoint someone who declares that she hates whites and males to his editorial board?

It’s not a question that can be easily answered (except of course by psychologists and sociologists who know everything about the human mind and heart but can only explain what they know unintelligibly).

A similar question is: Why do Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May, Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel, and the ladies who rule Sweden want to hand over their countries to Islam?

And another in the same genre is: Why do intellectuals who claim that their political mission and life-goal is to raise the folks at the bottom of the social hierarchy and sink the rich by robbing them until they are no richer than anybody else in order to achieve and establish an egalitarian society, despise and insult the working class?

At American Greatness, Victor Davis Hanson writes (in part – the whole thing is well worth reading):

Recently Politico reporter Marc Caputo was angered at rude hecklers at a Trump rally who booed beleaguered CNN correspondent Jim Acosta.

(Yay!)

So Caputo tweeted of them, “If you put everyone’s mouths together in this video, you’d get a full set of teeth.”

Politico had not employed such a crass journalist since before it fired Julia Ioffe for tweeting, “Either Trump is f—ing his daughter or he’s shirking nepotism laws. Which is worse?” (Ioffe was then snatched up by the Atlantic …). 

I suppose Caputo meant that Trump voters intrinsically lacked either the money to fix their teeth or the knowledge of the hygiene required to take care of them or the aesthetic sensitivity of how awful their mouths looked. Or Caputo was simply rehashing the stereotypes that he had seen on reality TV shows like Duck Dynasty and The Deadliest Catch.

Or none of the above: the journalist grandee was just stupid.

That last alternative seems most likely since Caputo then escalated and called them collectively “garbage people”.  …

What did “garbage people” mean? That by birth or training such toothless, smelly people were subhuman, like refuse? And if Caputo had substituted any other racial minority for his slurs, would he still have his job according to the cannons of progressive censure and Internet lynching? Could he have said something similarly degrading about the attendees of after an open borders or Black Lives Matter rally and still have his job?

Last week, the New York Times named tech writer Sarah Jeong to its editorial board with apparent knowledge of her long history of racist tweets, as well as verbal attacks on police and males in general. Perhaps such gutter venom was proof of militant orthodoxy to be appreciated rather than medieval racism to be shunned. Her mostly empty résumé seems compensated by her identity and her politics—as the Times more or less confessed in its sad defense of her racist outbursts.

Jeong claimed that white people smelled like wet dogs. She had bragged that she hated them, and hoped that soon they would become childless and disappear. Her final solution of demographic extinction was, she said (in historically dense fashion), “my plan all along.”

One wonders whether she will canonize her collected tweets into something like My Struggle … 

(The translation  of the title of Adolf Hitler’s book, in German Mein Kampf …)

… replete with less abstract territorial theories how to reify her “plan” or add pseudo-scientific details explaining why and how whites, as she alleges, smell or have had no cultural or scientific achievements. …

Many whites smell. (Or “stink” as the great lexicographer Samuel Johnson told a lady he did when she complained to him that he “smelt”, while she, he said, was the one who “smelt” – transitive verb, meaning she smelt him). But (to state the obvious for the average American Lefty who may have some academic degrees but has learnt little and cannot even spell) whites are responsible for most of the scientific achievements that have made our lives longer and better and our civilization great. The old Greeks who launched science were white. Isaac Newton who relaunched science and so also the Enlightenment, was white. The Age of Science began then and is with us still.  As for other cultural achievements …

What’s that you say, Ms. Jeong? Shakespeare was black, and actually a woman? Einstein too? Good grief, we never knew!

In the text message trove of disgraced FBI operatives Lisa Page and Peter Strzok there was the same sort of barnyard contempt. Georgetown graduate Strzok claimed to Page that a local Virginia Walmart “smelled” of Trump voters—a progressive stereotype of white Neanderthals that is increasingly freely expressed.

In another government text, an unidentified FBI agent, assigned to the Hillary Clinton email investigation, had written of the Trump voters that they were “lazy POS that think we will magically grant them jobs for doing nothing.”

Again, demonizing the Trump voter as beyond cultural redemption is nothing new. During the 2016 campaign, Hillary Clinton infamously dismissed Trump supporters as “deplorables” who were“irredeemable” and were “not America”.

In some sense, the rebranded Clinton simply continued where Barack Obama had left off in his denunciations of the “bitter clingers” of Pennsylvania, who were prone to simplistic trust in their guns and religion and, out of insecurity, scapegoated others.

When Obama periodically wrote off Americans as “lazy” and ignorant of the world beyond them (this, from another Harvard law graduate who thought Hawaii was in Asia and Austrians spoke “Austrian”), he was, to use a progressive metaphor, dog whistling the themes of his clingers speech.

Elites are confident that there is nothing either ethically wrong or career-endangering in smearing middle-class Trump supporters with such crude stereotypes.

When pundits on television go after Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), they inevitably resort to attacking his Tulare roots, and his dairy-farm upbringing (“A former dairy farmer”; “way over his head”; “nothing in his résumé that would have qualified him for the post”, etc.) to claim that he is mismatched by Harvard-trained Adam Schiff. Again, how strange that egalitarians always revert to base snobbery and class stereotypes in lieu of an argument or an idea. …

Jeong is a Harvard Law graduate. Strzok has a master’s degree from Georgetown. The ridicule of the white working class by NeverTrump conservative pundits is read on the pages of the nation’s premier newspapers or voiced in hallowed symposia.

Is such ignorance of an entire class because of, or in spite of such, elite training?

Does the university-bred cursus honorarium have room for real-world experience beyond the campus and laptop?

Has Jeong ever worked welding alongside the grandchildren of Dust Bowl diaspora to adjudicate their actual skin-colored advantage? Did her class and gender studies work at Harvard Law constitute a tougher curriculum than a 12-hour shift at Denny’s? Is the soybean jack-of-all-trades farmer really denser than the Yale English major?

Which reminds us of this best of all satires ever. We cannot resist re-posting it:

 

The right questions 5

The Vast Left-Wing Conspiracy’s chief persecutor of President Trump has sent him a list of questions, of the when-did-you-last-beat-your-wife type, in the hope of tricking him  into saying something for which they could have the House of Representatives impeach him, if that assembly should come to be dominated by the Democratic Party while President Trump is in office.

Here are questions that urgently need answers from the leaders of the Left-Wing Conspirators themselves.

From Front Page, by Lloyd Billingsley, questions for Chief Persecutor Robert Mueller:

Investigations normally pursue a crime. What crime, exactly, are you investigating? Given the time and money you have put in, the people have a right to know.

Special Counsel Mueller, if you operate in search of collusion, what statute, exactly, would you use to prosecute collusion? Please supply the numbers in the U.S. code.

Special Counsel Mueller, you have been called a man of great integrity. Why did you front-load your investigative team with highly partisan supporters of Hillary Clinton? Were independent, non-partisan lawyers not available?

If your target is Russian influence in general, Special Counsel Mueller, why are you not investigating the Clinton Foundation and its dealings with Russia? Have you consulted the book Clinton Cash?

Special Counsel Mueller, what is your understanding of Fanny Ohr? She is the Russia expert, wife of demoted DOJ official Bruce Ohr, who worked for Fusion GPS on the Steele dossier. In your expert opinion, why might Fanny Ohr have acquired a short-wave radio license about that time? Was it to communicate with Russian contacts and avoid detection? Did the FBI monitor any of Ohr’s communications?

As you know, Peter Strzok was formerly FBI counterintelligence boss, a very important position. Why was agent Strzok unable to detect the work of the Democrats’ IT man Imran Awan, who had no security clearance but gained repeated unauthorized access to computers of the House Intelligence and Foreign Affairs Committees? Was that because agent Strzok was busy exonerating presidential candidate Hillary Clinton for her destruction of evidence, including more than 30,000 emails?

Agent Strzok changed “gross negligence,” which was a crime, to “extremely careless,” which was not, and FBI boss James Comey repeated that change. What is your take on that? Did you ever exonerate a suspect before you even talked to them?

In your view, former FBI Director Mueller, what was all that business with Loretta Lynch and Bill Clinton out on the tarmac? Was it just to exchange pleasantries? Given the time and money you have put in, the public has a right to know.

As you know, Special Counsel Mueller, the FBI sought to identify and discipline the agent who made public the Lynch-Clinton meeting. Who is that person and what is he or she doing now? As you know, agent Strzok still has his badge, his gun and his security clearance.

As you also know, the Communist Party USA was created and sustained by Soviet Russia. In the 1980 and 1984 elections, their candidates were Gus Hall for president and Angela Davis for vice president. Former FBI Director Mueller, how much did Russia spend on those elections? Or did the FBI not bother with Russian intervention in those days?

Former CIA boss John Brennan is claiming that Donald Trump will be relegated to the dustbin of history. In 1976, Brennan voted for the Stalinist Gus Hall for president. In your opinion, former FBI Director Mueller, should that have disqualified Brennan from working for the CIA? And would you have hired him at the FBI? If so, in what capacity?

As you know, Special Counsel Mueller, the FBI failed to stop Omar Mateen’s attack in Florida, and despite warnings failed to stop the Tsarnaev brothers from bombing the Boston Marathon. Why did the powerful agency you once headed fail to stop those acts of terrorism that claimed so many innocent lives?

The FBI was aware of Major Nidal Hasan’s emails to terrorist Anwar al-Awlaki but failed to stop him from murdering 13 unarmed American soldiers at Fort Hood. Sen. Joseph Lieberman sought to make the Hasan-Awlaki emails public but the FBI blocked their release.

Former FBI Director Mueller, when reporters asked you if the FBI had dropped the ball by failing to act, you said, “No. I think, given the context of the discussions and the situation that the agents and the analysts were looking at, they took appropriate steps.” Any second thoughts on that? At the time you expressed no regret over Hasan’s victims, but maybe you have some now?

Given that massive and deadly failure on your watch, why should the people have any confidence in your current probe? Given the time and money you have put in, your team of Clinton cronies, and the absence of any crime or collusion, the people have a right to know. Meanwhile, please indulge a final question

As Paul Kengor showed in The Communist, the FBI had an extensive file on African American Stalinist Frank Marshall Davis, who was in fact a Soviet agent. Were you aware that Frank Marshall Davis was the man known only as “Frank” in the Dreams from My Father book by POTUS 44? Did that ever come up in your time as FBI Director from 2001-2013? The people would sure like to know.

From American Greatness, by Victor Davis Hanson, questions for Barack Obama:

What did you mean when you were heard, by accident, on a hot mic, providing the following assurances to outgoing Russian Prime Minister Medvedev: “On all these issues, but particularly missile defense, this, this can be solved, but it’s important for him to give me space . . . This is my last election. After my election, I have more flexibility”?

Did you and the Russian government have any private agreements to readjust Russian-American relations during your own 2012 reelection campaign? Were there other such discussions similar to your comments to Prime Minister Medvedev?

If so, do you believe such Russian collusion had any influence on the outcome of the 2012 election?

Did your subsequent reported suspension of, or reduction in, some planned missile defense programs, especially in Eastern Europe, have anything to do with the assurances that you gave to the Russian Prime Minister?

Did the subsequent Russian quietude during your 2012 reelection campaign have anything to do with your assurances of promised changes in U.S. foreign policy?

Did you adjudicate U.S. responses to Russian behavior on the basis of your own campaign re-election concerns?

More specifically, what exactly did you mean when you asked the Russian Prime Minister for “space”? And further what did you intend by suggesting that after your 2012 election you would have more “flexibility” with the Russian government?

Would you please define “flexibility” in this context?

What do you think Prime Minister Medvedev meant when he replied to your request for space, and your promise for flexibility after the election, with: “Yeah, I understand. I understand your message about space. Space for you . . . I understand . . . I will transmit this information to Vladimir?”

Did you hear subsequently from the Russians that Prime Medvedev had delivered the message that you had intended for Vladimir Putin?

Subsequently, did Vladimir Putin communicate with you about any such understanding that the U.S. government would modulate its foreign policy during your reelection campaign in exchange for “space”?

Did any such arrangement in 2012 have anything to do with the later absence of a strong U.S. response to subsequent cyber-attacks by Russian operatives, or to the later 2014 Russian invasions of both Eastern Ukraine and the Crimea?

During the email controversies over the illegal use of a private email account and server by your secretary of state, Hillary Clinton, you stated publicly that you first became aware of her improper use of a private server through press accounts. Yet records show that you yourself communicated with Secretary Clinton over her unauthorized email account. How do you reconcile your public statements with your private actions?

Did you ever at any time improperly transmit classified information over Secretary of State Clinton’s email server under a pseudonymous email account?

Do you feel that you violated federal law by communicating with your secretary of state over an unsecured email server?

Did you discuss in any fashion with your own Department of Justice the ongoing FBI investigation of Secretary of Clinton’s email server and account? Do you know anything about a September 2016, election-cycle communication in which FBI investigator Lisa Page texted to fellow FBI investigator Peter Strzok that “potus wants to know everything we’re doing?” What did you wish to know from the FBI about the email investigation?

When in August 2016 you declared on Fox News that then candidate Hillary Clinton had not endangered national security by the use of an unsecured email server (“I can tell that you this is not a situation in which America’s national security was endangered . . .  she has not jeopardized America’s national security”), on what basis did you offer such a blanket exoneration? Had the FBI confirmed to you such a conclusion?

Do you have any knowledge of the contents of any of the 30,000 emails that were deleted by Secretary Clinton?

Were you aware at any time — before, during, or after — of a clandestine meeting between Attorney General Loretta Lynch and former president Bill Clinton on an airport tarmac in Phoenix, Arizona before their meeting became public?

If so, what immediate actions did you take to ensure the integrity of the ongoing investigation of Secretary Clinton’s email account?

Were you briefed at any time on the contents of the Fusion GPS so-called Steele dossier? If so, when and by whom, and what actions did you take in response to such knowledge?

Were you aware that members of your Justice Department and the FBI had relied on the purchased Steele dossier to obtain FISA warrants to surveille member(s) of the Trump campaign staff during the 2016 election?

Were you aware at any time that FISA court judges were not informed of the fact that the author of the dossier has been hired by the Clinton campaign, or had been fired from a cooperative relationship with the FBI, or that the dossier itself was unverified by the FBI or that news accounts about it that were presented to the court as verification of its contents, were in fact, based on selective leaks of its contents to media sources?

If you were aware of any of the above, what action did you take?

Have you ever discussed the Fusion GPS/Steele dossier with Loretta Lynch, James Comey, Bruce Ohr, Glenn Simpson, Rod Rosenstein, or Hillary Clinton? If so when and under what circumstances?

Were you aware that transcripts of such subsequent FISA surveillance were made available to members of you own staff and administration, including, for example, Samantha Power, Ben Rhodes, and Susan Rice?

At any time during the 2016 campaign were you briefed on the contents of the Steele dossier by either your CIA director John Brennan, or Director of National Intelligence James Clapper?

Did you speak at any time with former Senator Harry Reid about the contents of the Steele dossier?

Were you aware at any time that members of your administration had viewed classified transcripts of such surveillance, requested that redacted names of the surveilled were to be unmasked, and then leaked those names to the press?

Did you ever approve or know of direct surveillance of the Trump campaign or transition?

If so, what actions did you take either to reprimand such actions or to prevent their recurrence?

At what time where you briefed by either FBI Director Robert Mueller, or Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein on the progress of the so-called Uranium One investigation?

Did Attorney General Loretta Lynch discuss with you the nature of that investigation?

Were you at any time worried about the compromised status of U.S. uranium sources, and if so what did you do about such concerns?

Did you at any time talk with members of the Russian government or those with ties with the Russian government about the Uranium One sale?

Were you aware at any time of massive gifting from Russian-related operatives to the Clinton Foundation?

Were you aware that Bill Clinton in June 2010 had received a $500,000 honorarium for a speech in Moscow from business interests with ties to the Russian government?

Did you at any time discuss with Secretary Clinton either President Clinton’s speech or her own violations of supposed promises and agreements with your office — specifically that both the Clinton Foundation and Bill Clinton would not have commercial relations or receive gifts/honoraria from any interests seeking commercial agreements or exemptions from the State Department?

Were you aware that Secretary Clinton’s personal aide, Huma Abedin, was as a private consultant conducting business with foreign entities, while still employed by the Clinton State Department?

How and when did you first become aware of the hacking of the email accounts at the Democratic National Committee?

Did your administration have any discussions with John Podesta, Donna Brazile or any members of the DNC concerning such data breaches?

Were you aware that DNC Chairman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, did not offer DNC computers to FBI investigators for examination after they were compromised?

Were you told by any member of your administration why this was so?

Were you aware at any time, prior to James Clapper’s false testimony in a congressional hearing, that the National Security Agency and other intelligence agencies had illegally surveilled American citizens?

Were you aware at any time, prior to John Brennan’s false testimony in a congressional hearing, that U.S. drone attacks in Afghanistan and Pakistan had inadvertently killed noncombatant civilians?

Did you take any action to reprimand John Brennan for lying to Congress on two occasions, concerning his false assertions that drones had not killed civilians, and that the CIA had not monitored U.S. Senate staffers’ computer communications?

Did you take any action to reprimand James Clapper for providing false testimony to the Congress concerning NSA surveillance?

Were you aware of the communications between your Justice Department and any local, state, or federal authorities concerning the jailing of Internet video maker, Nakoula Basseley Nakoula on suddenly discovered probation violations?

When and by whom were you first briefed that the Benghazi attacks were pre-planned terrorist attacks and not, as members of your administration had alleged, spontaneous riots resulting from an Internet video?

When and by whom were you briefed about Lois Lerner’s conduct at the IRS?

Did you discuss with anyone Lois Lerner’s decision to invoke her Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination?

On what basis did you assert that neither Lois Lerner nor her associates were guilty of “even a smidgen of corruption”?

Was your public exoneration based on any evidence presented to you by internal IRS or FBI investigators? If so, when and by whom?

Why in the last days of your presidential tenure, did you suddenly vastly expand the number of agencies and intelligence analysts privy to classified NSA intelligence gathering?

On what grounds did you take such action, and did your decision have anything to do with your knowledge of the classified surveillance of Donald Trump, or his campaign, or information in the Steele dossier?

In the past, were you aware of the circumstances under which the sealed divorce records of both your 2004 Illinois primary and general election Senate opponents, Blair Hull and Jack Ryan respectively, were illegally leaked to the press? At any time, did you view such sealed records and, if so, when and by whom were you apprised that such records were leaked to the press?

From us, one self-answering question:

Why does the Democratic Party reek of corruption?

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.

… Or if war is not coming 9

Victor Davis Hanson, writing at Townhall, discusses what might happen in response to the North Korean threat of nuclear war. He includes this, the last of four possible scenarios:

Preemption. Barring the “peaceful” options of defanging nuclear North Korea, the U.S. and its Japanese and South Korean allies would have to disable the missiles through military force.

Such a nightmarish action would not be limited to “surgical strikes”. Instead, it would have to include massive attacks on North Korean missile sites, command and control centers, artillery and missile platforms, military bases and WMD repositories.

Such preemption would quickly escalate to a general-theater war – or worse.

But would it necessarily? And what would be worse?

Last-gasp North Korean nukes might escape preemptive bombing and be launched at Japan, South Korea, America’s Pacific bases and the U.S. West Coast.

A tottering North Korea could order a full-fledged artillery pounding of Seoul, chemical and cyber attacks, and a conventional ground invasion of South Korea.

The U.S. and its allies would win such a war. But the cost could be catastrophic and prompt global recession.

Why would it precipitate a global recession?

No one knows what China would do in such an exigency. Would it merely cry crocodile tears while its troublesome patron disappeared? Or to save its last communist client, would China send troops into the peninsula as it did in the fall of 1950?

One thing is always certain. The naive architects of appeasement who watch as monsters grow always win short-term praise for avoiding immediate war. Their realist successors, who are forced to cage or destroy such full-grown beasts, are usually labeled as war mongers. 

Yes, and in these days of civilizational despair, labels terrify people more than death. 

It may well be the case that the Western mind is now so set against war, against the killing it involves, that it will not defend itself. Not, anyway, by a preemptive strike.

What then? No one offers scenarios or prophecies of what will happen if Kim Jong-un is not disarmed.

Posted under China, North Korea, United States, War by Jillian Becker on Thursday, January 4, 2018

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