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Archive of posts published in the tag: Donald Trump

Is Combatting Anti-Semitism an Act of Anti-Semitism?

Whatever you may think of Trump, he has been the strongest unequivocal supporter of Israel since its independence and his recent executive order strikes a strong blow to anti-Semitism on college campuses.  To draw a conclusion from this that he is a tool of the alternate right requires a willing suspension of the obvious.

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Thoughts on Impeachment

By using their big weapon early in the campaign, the Democrats will be in weaker position during the campaign. Adam Schiff will be Pelosi’s fall guy; she warned against impeachment before she succumbed to the mob.  And the Democrats will have yet learned the lesson from their previous fiascos: rage makes you stupid.

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When the Parties Abandon Ideology

A political party is a coalition of interests designed to convince a majority to trust it enough to let it govern. The Progressive Era in its aim to neuter the constitutional speed bumps to majoritarian democracy pushed for democratic primaries. Initially the parties retained some ideological commitment, but in the age of instant outrage media, they have descended into tribal warfare where emotions rule over ideas. The two sides do not share common information or common narratives that define us as a nation.  There is no mere disagreement on how we arrive at common goals; we no longer agree on who we are.

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The Battle of the Bastards

The big question when Trump won in 2016 was whether his victory was the result of the rejection of the ideology of the left or the rejection of the deeply flawed Hillary Clinton.  The question few of us considered was if it was the attractiveness of either the character or policies of Donald Trump.  

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Conrad Black on American Legal System

“The U.S. criminal justice system, because of the corruption of the plea bargain system that facilitates the prosecutors’ extortion of perjured inculpatory evidence with impunity, is just an immense kangaroo court.”

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Growth and Inequality

It only surprises those whose blind rage over anything Trump combined with their mistaken belief that inequality is “the defining challenge of our time” (Obama).  If you prioritize inequality over growth you will have more inequality and less growth; if you prioritize growth over inequality you will have more growth and less inequality.  

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The Uncertainty Tax and Friction Costs

Trump maybe correct in recognizing China’s destructive trade policies, but he is wrong to think that alone justifies a trade war.  He is wrong to think that Twitter is an acceptable negotiation platform, and he is wrong to think that he is the only national leader with stubborn pride.  Xi does not face an election in 2020 and has the political advantage of waiting him out, even if there are in a weaker economic position.

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The Suicide of Identity Politics

This is the slow-motion suicide of identity politics. When everything is about race or sex it loses its power because it becomes impossible to identify. The Squad cannot even disagree with its own party and leaders without attributing differences to racism. Pelosi tried to minimize the power of these few House Democrats yet was unable to pass a meaningful anti-Semitic resolution against the support these few actors garnered. Yet they had little trouble passing a resolution condemning Trump’s ‘racist’ comment.

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2020 Election Questions

The country can recover much more quickly from a bad character than from bad ideas with wide support. Will the independents have more to fear from the radical elements within the Democratic party and their bad ideas than they have to fear from Trump’s flawed character? That may be the central question in the 2020 election.

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Character and Ideas

The illiberal behavior on college campuses where free speech is quickly sacrificed on the altar of political correctness, where due process is sacrificed to the whims of social justice, and where violence and other uncivil behavior has been tolerated has now spread to the halls of Congress.  When the ends justify the means it becomes acceptable to scream at and harass government officials in public restaurants, during Senate hearings and in their office elevators.  This concerns me more than Donald Trump.

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Trump ‘Splaining

But beneath these divisions and changes noted by Zito and Todd was a greater difference about their relation to the state. Few voters get into the weeds of political philosophy when they vote, and Trump certainly wasted no time on it, but the voters sensed that constitutional rights were being whittled away by a state that pretended to know what was better for them. The basic civic culture that had survived cycles of progressivism was eroding. Differences of opinion became hate speech; due process was sacrificed to social justice.

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Thugs of Moral Supremacy

“Then, not thugs in sunglasses and epaulettes, not oligarchs in private jets, not shaggy would-be Marxists, but sanctimonious arrogant bureaucrats in suits and ties used their government agencies to seek to overturn the 2016 election, abort a presidency, and subvert the U.S. Constitution. And they did all that and more on the premise that they were our moral superiors and had uniquely divine rights to destroy a presidency that they loathed.”

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The Shame of American Journalism

“Ronald Reagan liked to quip that a government department represented the closest thing to eternal life we are likely to see on this earth. In close second is a bad journalist with the right opinions, for he will be treated as if he were the very embodiment of liberty.”

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Midterm Realities

The adage that we vote our pocketbooks only applies if the economy sucks. A candidate gets less credit for a strong economy than he gets the blame for a weak economy.

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Why Was It Even Close?

His combative tone is welcomed by his supporters and hated by the opposition.  He is solidifying his base and turning his reluctant supporters into committed supporters, but Trump is less effective at getting new supporters.  

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Their Last Worst Act

Nancy Pelosi remains as viscerally objectionable today as she was then. Only today she is joined by Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren, Ortessa-Cortez, Cory ‘Spartacus’ Booker, Maxine Waters, Bernie Sanders, and now Diane Feinstein. I used to consider Ms. Feinstein a class above the rest of this crowd but she humiliated herself in the Kavanaugh debacle. We are remembered by our last worst act.

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The Tyranny of Sore Losers

“They bitterly lament the unfairness that a Wyoming or Montana might have as many senators per state as California or New York, though they had no such complaint in 2009 when they had a Senate supermajority — a margin they won in part because a tiny progressive state such as Rhode Island had the same number of senators as odious conservative Texas.”

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No One Left to Blame

If the Democrats fail to take the house this November it will be a greater loss than losing to Trump in 2016.  There is no one left to blame but themselves.  The Republicans are likely to increase their hold on the Senate by at least 3 seats.

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Emulating Robespierre

“There is much to fault in the Trump presidency, but the totalitarian tendencies appear to flow from our own party. Its present presidential aspirants appear to be emulating Robespierre in their over-the-top denunciations of Mr. Trump and all others they deem unworthy.”

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The Dogma Within You

Donald Trump is the devil, removing any need for rationality, morality or honesty from the resistance movement.  The evil of Donald Trump  is required to justify the batshit behavior we have witnessed at the Kavanaugh hearing.

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