Aftermath

When Donald Trump became President in 2017, I expressed my concern for the Republican Party. On January 30, 2017, in a post, “And then the Republicans,” I questioned whether the Republican leaders in Congress could work with Trump. I asked, “This sets up a clash between Trump and the congressional leaders. Do the conservative leader’s tame Trump, so he obediently signs on to their program, or does he use his followers to bully Congress into submission?” For almost all four years, to my surprise, Trump and the leadership worked relatively well together. The fact the Democrats came down with a severe case of “Trump Derangement Syndrome ruled out any relationship with them. Democratic cries of Russian collusion will lead to impeachment precluded the Democrats and left only the Republicans. The GOP-Trump partnership resulted in a mass of conservative judges, tax reform, a strengthened military, and regulation reduction. The economy did well by a more significant swath of people.

This marriage of convenience was exposed during and after the election. When it looked as if the President would lose, he attacked mail-in voting. He told his supporters to avoid it in favor of in-person voting instead of using the pre-election time to getting their supporters to vote early. This stance hurt Republican early efforts. Even if you plan to vote on election day, something could come up preventing it. This is especially true in this time of COVID-19. In this close election, this proved to be foolish. The President seemed to want an excuse for losing while the party tried to win up and down the ballot. The alliance was fraying.

After he appeared to lose, Trump attacked the outcome. As I’ve written earlier, a close look at an election where widespread first time mail-in voting was done was certainly warranted. We needed to be assured the election results were correct. A wave of recounts and court rulings confirming they were followed. Even Bill Barr, the Attorney General, failed to find fraud that would’ve changed the result. Yet, Trump refused to accept the outcome. Worse, he attacked fellow Republicans. In GOP controlled states of Arizona and, more fatally, Georgia, President viciously attacked the Governor and Secretary of State of his own party. With two crucial Senate seats to decide the Senate’s control on January 5, a total Republican effort was needed to win.

Continue reading

We Need A Change

More than ever, we have to open up our political system to new ideas. Both parties have grown stale in their approach to long-standing problems. Take healthcare. The Democrats, no matter what they say, want a single-payer system. Everything else is just a way to get there. The Republicans seem to have a brain freezeā€”a few changes around the edges, but no real plan. There is nothing attractive about the rationing that’s always part of a single-payer system or our current very costly approach. Other countries, such as Singapore, have had great success in moving a new direction.

The problem is, if one side proposes something different, the other dismisses it out of hand. Worse, each exists in its bubble. One side might not even be aware of what the other is discussing. Unfortunately, we have too many examples of mutual exclusion.

Before the election, A major American newspaper, the New York Post, published a story potentially damaging to Joe Biden. A laptop allegedly belonging to Joe Biden’s son Hunter was found. Some emails casting doubt on Hunter’s business practices and showing his father’s knowledge of them was on it. I have no special powers to establish the truth of the situation, but at a minimum, we would expect Hunter and his father to contest the story’s veracity. We never heard the father or son’s defense because no one asked. Also, Big Tech limited the story’s spread. It took over three years to find Trump wasn’t Putin’s agent. It would be nice to know the Bidens aren’t in hock to China and others.

Continue reading

Pyrrhic victory

Joe Biden has won the Presidency. While a win is a win, as King Pyrrhus of Epirus found out, victories in the short run can come at too high a cost. Even after winning battles against the Romans, the price was so high that he had to abandon the war in the longer run. The Democrats may suffer the same fate.

If ever a party had everything in their favor going into an election, it was the Democrats. The Covid-19 epidemic turned Trump’s robust economy into a depression. While it is unlikely any President would’ve handled the pandemic correctly, the Democrats had the support of almost all media in branding the President’s actions as inadequate. Worse, a Fall wave of new cases was raging during the voting. The worst of it was in the upper Midwest swing states.

The President never had a high favorable rating. His abrasive and narcissistic personality appealed to many but turned off others. This is especially true of women. Covid-19 also is more problematic for women.

Adding to their advantages, the Democrats had an enormous amount of money. Call it Trump “derangement syndrome,” or simply some people just hate the President; they contributed heavily to defeat him. Wealthy Business people often contribute heavier to the party they think will be in power. Crony capitalism or close to it. Apparently, virtue shaming by the left also contributed to Democratic business support. Just look at the actions of the NFL and the NBA. Highly publicized black deaths at the hands of the police resulted in protests and riots. No business or anyone else, for that matter, wants to be labeled as racist.

Continue reading

You Say Class, I Say Caste

When prominent people take the extreme step of abandoning their longtime political party to support the other party’s standard-bearer, it’s generally for irreconcilable policy differences. They usually write a lengthy explanation of why they now agree with the other party’s positions. Winston Churchill switched twice, and you knew at length what the policy differences were. In my last two posts, I’ve shown this isn’t the case for those switching to support Biden. I’m not seeing well thought out explanations why the policies of Joe Biden and the Democrats are so much better for America. Instead, they claim Trump is dangerous and has destroyed the Republican Party.

Two Political Action Committees (PAC) have been leading the effort to help the Democrats crush Trump. Republican Voters Against Trump (RVAT) and the Lincoln Project are actively campaigning to bring down the present President. The former puts its efforts into dumping Trump while the latter also works against down-ballot Republicans. It’s a distinction without a difference. If both get their wish and Trump loses in a landslide, both houses of Congress would almost certainly be in Democratic hands. With complete control, nothing would stand in the way of enacting the whole progressive agenda. Some form of the Green New Deal, packed courts, and government healthcare are among many other things that would become law. With two more states, a newly renamed District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico, good luck winning back the Presidency. Neither of these PACs has offered any detailed explanation of why thy now favor these policies.

Two of the leading Republican defectors are syndicated columnist George Will and former Ohio Governor John Kasich. Will has loudly announced becoming a Democrat, while it’s reported Kasich will actually speak at the Democratic Convention. I’ve enjoyed Will’s well-reasoned articles for more years than I’d like to admit. If Kasich had won the Republican nomination, he would’ve had my vote. Surely these communicators have statements of their reasoning.

Continue reading

Adding It Up

In my last post, I gauged the Trump administration has a more robust awareness of the world dangers facing us. It seems more appreciative of the goals of the leaders of China, Russia, and Iran. Nothing in the Obama-Biden administration’s history showed they were genuinely apprehensive of these players’ real motives. Biden may surprise us, but a man with no deeply held principles will probably do as he has always done. He will go where the current wind is blowing. Trump seems closer to the traditionally conservative world view. For this group of pro-Biden conservatives, the reasons for their move must lie with domestic policy.

Conservatives, if they are known for anything, stand for smaller government. A government not invading all facets of our lives. Governments are intrusive by expanding regulations. In the wake of the Great Recession, the Obama-Biden significantly increased rules in most areas. Many conservatives saw these as the main reason for the worst recovery from a recession in history. The regulations made it more difficult and expensive to do business. It showed a particular disdain. The “you didn’t build it” attitude.was hardly welcoming. Remember, business goes and grows where it’s welcome. Many economists give more credit to a better regulatory climate than tax cuts to the high employment pre-COVID-19 economy.

Continue reading