Thursday, August 10, 2017

Knee-Jerk Nation



Back in the days when I blogged at Townhall I regularly sparred with a group of rabidly angry, quasi-libertarians.  During one exchange my adversary characterized a response I made as “knee-jerk,” essentially accusing me of not thoughtfully considering the question or my answer before I responded.  That’s a serious insult in my book, so I immediately grabbed my keyboard to shoot back a denial and defend my comment, but in the struggle to articulate my reply I came to the embarrassing realization that he was actually right. 

Dang.  I hate it when that happens. 

I don’t recall the exact comment in question, only that it involved accepted ‘conservative’ lore and that daring to consider I was wrong also brought into question my worldview which was partially premised upon this and other notions that I’d long accepted as fact.  That was a pivotal moment in my blogging “career” and yes, I did concede to him that he was right (on that ONE point!), because I happen to believe credibility matters.  The experience taught me the importance of taking the time to stop and think and not be so reflexive in debate.  In the process I made a few alterations to certain long-held beliefs that I took for granted, and learned the value of carefully forming my own opinions instead of invoking standard partisan talking points.

Sadly - nay tragically - we have become a nation of people who by and large debate consequential topics with knee-jerk thoughtlessness.  The blogosphere, opinion journals, Facebook and Twitter are often besieged by inane, misguided, indefensible prattle that reveals a dangerous and destructive level of closed-mindedness, inexcusable ignorance and blind devotion to precious prejudices.  That’s not intended to be a blanket condemnation of those mediums as there is plenty of worthy, thoughtful discussion going on as well and that’s a great thing; but certainly the absence of any minimum standards for participation means that self-policing humility is in dangerously short supply.  It used to take work – and to certain audiences the demonstration of credibility – to enjoy the privilege of sharing your thoughts with vast numbers of people.  Now anyone can do so with a phone or computer, but the heretofore unsung voices of wisdom that have been given life by these tools are too often drowned out by those who spew nonsense. I think about the carefully articulated essays and letters crafted by this country’s founding fathers to debate and express their thoughts on the serious subjects of their time and I just want to shake my head at the realization of how far we’ve fallen in comparison.  Am I just glorifying a bygone time and a bygone people or is the disintegration real?

Look at the de-evolution of speech occurring on the campuses of our “institutions of higher learning,” where those who offer to come speak and who are willing to defend their opinions are treated with hostility and violence by those who, in all likelihood, have never heard these speakers articulate what they’re advocating.  In liberal-run schools of all levels the mere act of voicing an opinion is giddily applauded, as long as it’s the right opinion of course.  In these places where objective thinking and debate are supposed to be taught to young people as part of their passage to becoming adults, we instead see these young people encouraged to crawl back towards the womb, where they will curl up and suck their thumbs in their safe spaces or become tyrannical toddlers, screaming and hurling objects when they don’t get their way.   This is both the consequence and the future of the knee-jerk nation.   Gone are the days of Abraham Lincoln’s sage advice:  “Better to be silent and be thought a fool than to speak and remove all doubt.”  

After years of watching news analysis shows where conservative and liberal guests are brought on to debate the issues of the day, I have given up any hope of ever seeing one side persuaded by the other side’s more compelling argument, even when that argument contains facts and logic that are indisputable.  Without missing a breath every salient point is rejected out of hand, as if the speaker is on auto-pilot and just waiting to regurgitate his own talking points.  I understand they’re getting paid, one way or another, to represent a certain view no matter what, but I for one wouldn’t be able to stand the embarrassment of standing my ground while my argument is shown to be a failure.  But that’s just me.

Naturally readers will be wondering, “What about Donald Trump?  Isn’t he a knee-jerk president, what with all the tweeting and all?”

To a certain extent, I believe Trump is guilty of knee-jerk behavior, particularly when he feels personally attacked; but let’s not confuse quick reactions with automatic, thought-free reactions.  If one has watched for years as a rogue dictatorship like North Korea menaces its neighbors and the U.S. with threats of attack and progresses closer and closer to having nuclear weapons despite diplomatic efforts, it seems to me the thoughtful reaction, irrespective of speed, would be to treat this serious threat with serious words and actions, which is what Trump has done in my humble estimation.  It is the refusal to modify one’s precious prejudices about the sanctity of diplomacy in the face of an escalating threat that strikes me as robotic, and therefore knee-jerk, under this scenario. 

I don’t expect that the tide will turn and thoughtful reflection will be back in vogue any time soon.  As with anything that involves the Left, there’s a method to the madness.  If one actually debates with seriousness and sincerity one might have to concede that one is wrong, and then the mission to co-opt people’s rights is jeapordized.  There’s too much at stake to risk that.  Thieves and other usurpers of liberty never debate and they never concede any territory. 


~CW

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Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Dear Mark Zuckerberg




Dear Mark,

In your recent commencement address to Harvard, you said:

“We should explore ideas like universal basic income to make sure that everyone has a cushion to try new ideas.”

Mind if I ask a question?  Here it is:

What gives you or anyone else the right to treat other people’s money as if it is your own to do with as you please?

Please satisfy my curiosity.

When I was growing up we had a word for the type of thing you’re suggesting.  We called it “stealing.”  Nowadays conservatives call it “wealth redistribution.”  The leftists euphemistically call it “social justice.”  That sounds so much nicer than “stealing.”  But it’s all the same thing.

If the late, great Founders of this awesome country had had a crystal ball to see the names and faces of the enemies of liberty we would face within our own nation, they might have dealt with you and your ilk specifically.  But they had no way of knowing that a clever young man with the mental maturity of a 13-year old child would become a powerful billionaire by virtue of a popular social media website, and that this would seemingly entitle him to arrogantly and openly suborn nationwide theft.  The times may change but human nature never does, and the Founders knew you would come even if they didn’t know who you would be.  You are one of the wolves that Ben Franklin so wisely warned us about.  The Constitution our Founders gave us was meant to protect us from people like you.  You are a party to that “social contract” by virtue of your citizenship here, and being a party to the contract myself I’m here to say you have no right to propose what you’re proposing.  Do whatever you want with your own money, but keep your mitts off everyone else’s.  That goes for your friends too.

I could talk about all of the incredibly bad and predictable consequences of an idea like “universal basic income,” and back it up with centuries of history.  I could bring up all of the liberal programs that are riddled with fraud and corruption, that start out small and grow like the most aggressive cancers.  I could list all of the human parasites that feed off of ideas like yours and then multiply like zombies in the movies, beginning with the politicians.  Or I could point to the vast quantities of amazing innovation that we have somehow managed to produce without this brilliant idea of a “universal basic income.” That’s what conservative bloggers typically do when liberals share their great ideas.

But I won’t because I shouldn’t have to.  I am simply saying “No,” because you have no right to suggest what you’re suggesting.

If Republicans wanted to do anything useful while they control the three branches of our government they would make it a crime to do what you did in your speech at Harvard, just as it would be a crime, I presume, for me to suggest exploring the idea of taking Mark Zuckerburg’s fortune.  Regardless of how I feel about how you made your fortune or how you waste it, I would never do such a thing because I’m not a thief.  That, and billions of dollars, is the difference between you and me.

Lastly, Mark, I just want to point out that your idea for a “universal basic income” isn’t even necessary, because every American already has access to a guaranteed income.  We just have a different name for it.  We call it “having a job.”

Sincerely,


CW


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Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Barack Obama was and is Ten Times the Liar Donald Trump Will Ever Be



When James Comey last testifed before the Senate I was struck by the former FBI Director’s unapologetic use of the word “liar” when referring to President Trump in an open hearing.  It’s not that Donald Trump doesn’t lie.  Far from it, unfortunately.  It’s just that for the eight years prior to Trump’s election it was considered a no-no to use the word “liar” when referring to the POTUS in this type of public forum.  In fact, when Rep. Joe Wilson rightfully shouted “liar” while Barack Obama was lying in his State of the Union address to congress in 2009 it sparked disbelief and spitting outrage among the media elites.  Former POTUS Jimmy Carter as well as talking heads at MSNBC, the Daily Kos, the NYT and the Huffington Post, among others, angrily denounced Wilson as “racist,” even though Rep. Wilson was correct:  Obama was indeed lying.  But that was then and this is now, or as I am quickly learning, that was them and this is us.  The standards for what is considered acceptable behavior are rapidly changing, but don’t get too used to them.  They’ll change back if and when a Democrat is POTUS again.

During the Obama presidency much of the American public and nearly all of the “mainstream” media (MSM) played a game of see no evil, hear no evil when it came to Obama’s rampant dishonesty.  A frustrated Rep. Wilson no doubt felt compelled to defy the usual State of the Union etiquette because the MSM, by and large, certainly wouldn’t call Obama out for his lies and the rest of us were not allowed to according to rules of political correctness established by, coincidentally, the MSM.  Fast forward to today, however, and we are supposed to believe that Donald Trump is so uniquely and dangerously dishonest that the rules must be changed and the censorship – oops I mean civility – that was then the standard must now be temporarily forsaken for the good of the nation.   Will the good sheeple of the United States of America, dumbed down by years of media manipulation, go along with this?  If so, I have a question:   

What is a lie? 

When Barack Obama was accidently caught on camera leaning in to surreptitiously tell Russian President Dmitri Medvedev that he would have “more flexibility” to negotiate the issue of missile defense after his election, would you say this was the act of an honest or dishonest man? 

When a person’s actions often don’t match their words, what does this say about their honesty? 

From The Hill:  “Obama's speech proves hypocrisy of Democrat's anti-Wall Street rhetoric”
From the CNN opinion page:  “Obama administration was hypocritical on UN's Israeli settlements vote”
From Breitbart:  “Obama’s Pathetic Hypocrisy on Trade”
From the New York Post opinion page:  “Obama’s ‘safe space’ hypocrisy”
From Mother Jones:  “Obama Is a Climate Hypocrite. His Trip to Alaska Proves It.”
From MichelleMalkin.com:  “Hypocrisy legacy, part XXIV: Obama was for gerrymandering before he was against it”
From The HuffPost blog:  “Obama’s Climate Change Hypocrisy”
From Politico:  “Spare Me Your Hypocritical Journalism Lecture, Mr. President”
From National Review:  “Scarborough Dings Obama on Private-School Hypocrisy”
From The Toronto Sun:  “Obama's Keystone hypocrisy”

A serial hypocrite is a liar, plain and simple. 

And then there’s Obama’s notorious straw-man dishonesty:

Obama:  “There seems to be a set of folks who -- I don't doubt their sincerity -- who just believe that we should do nothing [about the economic meltdown].” 

Obama:  "…a philosophy that says every problem can be solved if only government would step out of the way; that if government were just dismantled, divvied up into tax breaks, and handed out to the wealthiest among us, it would somehow benefit us all. Such knee-jerk disdain for government -- this constant rejection of any common endeavor -- cannot rebuild our levees or our roads or our bridges." 

Obama:  “In recent days, there have been misguided criticisms of this plan that echo the failed theories that helped lead us into this crisis — the notion that tax cuts alone will solve all our problems… … that we can meet our enormous tests with half-steps and piecemeal measures…… that we can ignore fundamental challenges such as energy independence and the high cost of health care and still expect our economy and our country to thrive.”

Obama:  “Listen, here’s what I say. I say our challenges are too big to ignore.”

Obama:  “Either the issue of Iran obtaining a nuclear weapon is resolved diplomatically through a negotiation, or it’s resolved through force, through war.”

Obama:  “But U.S. military action cannot be the only, or even primary, component of our leadership in every instance. Just because we have the best hammer does not mean that every problem is a nail.”
Obama:  “Nobody thinks that Bush and McCain have a real answer to the challenges we face. So what they’re going to try to do is make you scared of me.  You know, he’s not patriotic enough, he’s got a funny name, you know, he doesn’t look like all those other presidents on the dollar bills."

According to Obama Republicans suggested we do nothing about the economic meltdown except dismantle the government and divide the spoils among the rich; Republicans said we should ignore our energy and healthcare, and all other problems; the only options in Iran were the Obama deal or going to war; Republicans want to use the military to solve every problem; and other candidates attacked Obama’s name and race to scare away voters.  The abundance of posts on Obama’s proclivity for straw-man arguments proves that it’s not just a figment of this writer’s imagination:

From The New Republic:  “Obama's Straw Man Argument”
From The Washington Free Beacon:  “Obama’s War on Straw Men”
From The New York Times:  “Some Obama Enemies Are Made Totally of Straw”
From American Thinker:  “Obama, Master of the Straw-Man Tactic”
From The Daily Caller:  “Former CIA Director Blasts Obama For ‘Straw Man’ Arguments In Fight Against Islamic Terrorism”
From National Review:  “How to Ignore Obama’s Straw Men and Override the Terrible Iran Deal
From The Washington Times:  “HUMPHRIES: The liberal bully of the week is … Obama’s straw man”
From American Thinker:  “The President's ObamaCare Straw Man”
From The Heritage Foundation:  “Obama Tax Hikes Defended by Myths and Straw Man Arguments: Summary”
From The American Spectator:  “Obama’s Straw Man”
From PowerLine:  “BARACK OBAMA AND THE HALL OF FAME OF STRAW MEN”

My apologies if you don’t find this particular set of sources persuasive but since the MSM rarely reports the hypocrisy or fallaciousness of Democrats we have to rely largely on conservative sources to see what the facts actually are.  And then of course there were plain, old-fashioned lies.  These were some of the headlines we saw during Barack’s presidency:

That last one documented Obama’s lies with respect to:

  • ·         The real loss of jobs in the American steel industry
  • ·         His changing position on using executive authority on immigration
  • ·         Calling ISIS a “JV team”
  • ·         The number of young Americans not covered by health insurance
  • ·         The number of people newly insured due to Medicaid expansion
  • ·         The number of jobs estimated to be created by the Keystone pipeline
  • ·         His claim of doubling the distance American cars will go on a gallon of gas
  • ·         Keeping Congress fully informed of his efforts to create a legal framework on counterterrorism
  • ·         Mitt Romney’s comments on an Arizona law, and on numerous other topics
  • ·         Obamacare being the reason for slowing insurance premium increases
  • ·         George W. Bush and the recession being responsible for 90% of the increase in the deficit (after Obama was in office for four years)
  • ·          “Fast and Furious” starting under the Bush administration
  • ·         Excluding lobbyists from policymaking jobs in his administration
  • ·         Getting the vast majority of his campaign money from small donors
  • ·         An Illinois man dying because he was denied treatment by his insurance company
  • ·         Health insurance companies making record profits just prior to passing Obamacare
  • ·         What percentage of our oil the U.S. imports
  • ·         A wide range of comments that he falsely attributed to John McCain
  • ·         Saying that he won’t wear flag pins

And please don’t get me started on the Oscar-worthy acting performances we were treated to throughout the Obama years, wherein the Liar-in-Chief would get angry, cry or hoarsely plead with us right on cue.  The MSM, who somehow missed so much of the lies, straw men and hypocrisies that riddled the Obama presidency, were deeply impressed by Obama’s acting:

CNN:  “Barack Obama's emotional evolution on gun control”

“The Mr. Cool in the Oval Office rarely shows emotion.  But on one issue -- guns -- President Barack Obama lets the public mask slip, revealing the ire boiling within.  Before the cameras, moved by the massacres of innocents that have punctuated his presidency, Obama has wept, his voice has cracked, he's visibly shaken with frustration, he's lashed out at lawmakers he sees as cowards and even led a congregation in ‘Amazing Grace.’”

The L.A. Times:  “Obama delivers emotional final speech to the nation: 'Yes, we did. Yes, we can.'"

“President Obama reprised his message of hope and change Tuesday as an antidote to an unstable world…”

The Washington Post:  “President Obama’s amazingly emotional speech on gun control”

“For Obama, who is often criticized for his overly clinical approach to heated issues, his tone -- sad and mad in relatively equal measure -- was remarkable.”

It’s true, Donald Trump lies.  That is in part why he wasn’t my choice for the Republican nominee.  But Trump’s lies pale in comparison to the calculated, holistic approach to lying that we saw for eight long years under Barack Obama.  Obama was so good and so practiced at lying that nearly every sentence could be steeped in dishonesty and still not trigger the Left’s increasingly high bar for technically lying.  Furthermore, weren’t these the same people who wanted Hillary-Pants-on-Fire-Clinton to be POTUS?  So when James Comey and America’s hysterical Left profess such concern and righteous indignation over Trump or complain about his obscene, parasitic presidency, color me completely unmoved.  They were the enablers to much, much worse.


~CW

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Thursday, June 29, 2017

Healthcare, the Constitution, and Why are Republicans Such Fools?

Free Market Healthcare

NOT Free Market Healthcare

Any questions?

Can you imagine what it would be like if Republican politicians were put in charge of removing a stubborn Band-Aid from a child’s arm?

Republican #1:  “We can’t just rip off the Band-Aid!  It’s going to hurt and then her parents will be mad and our approval ratings will go down!

Republican #2:  “What if we brought in the finest surgeons (at taxpayers’ expense) to surgically remove her arm, rip off the Band-Aid, and then reattach the arm?”

Republican #3:  “That’s crazy!  Let’s just bring in a team of anesthesiologists (at taxpayers’ expense) to sedate the child, then rip off the Band-Aid while she’s sleeping.”

Republican #4:  “Or we could hire a circus (at taxpayers’ expense) to distract her while we rip the Band-Aid off!”

After recently postponing a vote on the Republican healthcare bill, Senate leader Mitch McConnell said, “This is a very complicated subject.”

I suppose it is complicated, but that’s in no small part because Republicans have exacerbated the problem with their foolish and misguided efforts to “fix” the Obamacare mess with the impossible, self-imposed condition of not upsetting anyone.   Furthermore, if not upsetting anyone is the goal, they’re failing miserably.  And apparently if anyone IS to be upset it can’t be the freeloaders who should be paying for their own healthcare, the insurance companies who conspired with Obama or the medical industry that profits so handsomely by gaming the system.  No, as always it must be middleclass taxpayers, most of whom already provide for their own insurance, who take the fall because these are the folks who can be depended upon to re-elect the same Republicans that keep failing them.  This is the insanity that is our Party.

The Supreme Court’s traitorous ruling notwithstanding, the federal government has no business involving itself in the healthcare of American citizens.   I know this in my heart and in my brain to be a fundamental and inarguable truth, because the evidence speaks for itself.  Just look at the mess that’s been made with respect to both our healthcare “system” (more on that later), the infinitely spiraling costs and the take-no-prisoners fighting that consumes both bodies of congress as they battle on behalf of their constituencies.  You don’t need to be an expert on the Constitution or on the Founding Fathers to see that this chaos and violation of our liberties is not the product of their design.   This is what the Constitution was supposed to protect us from.  As long as the federal government insists on inserting itself where it doesn’t belong and assuming powers that the Constitution does not expressly assign to it, chaos will always be just an election away, if not the everyday norm.  That is the principled, moral argument for repealing Obamacare.  It was wrong from the get go, therefore it must be undone.  But since so many Republicans no longer care about what is right or wrong according to the Constitution, I’ll make the practical argument as well.

The first problem with the “healthcare system” in the U.S. is that it was never supposed to be a “system.” “System” implies central planning, purposeful design and continuous regulation with the goal of producing a defined outcome.  None of this has historically been applicable to healthcare in the U.S. which, aside from the unique and polluting involvement of the insurance industry (more on that later), should be like any other consumer product bought and sold in the free market.  But the Left understands that a clever lie repeated often enough becomes the truth, and their nagging insistence, year after year, that the “healthcare system is broken” has turned myth into reality in a classic case of the tail wagging the dog.  How can the system be “broken” if the system doesn’t exist?  It was a slight of hand that enabled the federal government to justify meddling in something that the Constitution gives it no power to meddle in.  To whatever extent a U.S. “healthcare system” exists, it is not by design but by deceit and default.

One of the reasons Republicans are having so much trouble trying to cut and paste a bill that “fixes” healthcare, besides the fact that it’s outside the scope of authority of the federal government, is because they want to give voters the benefits of a free market without the negatives of a free market.  Insurance is supposed to be something you buy in case you get sick, not after you get sick.  That’s what makes it insurance.  A free market requires that you make trade-offs and sacrifices and establish priorities in your life.  Consequences, good and bad, are a necessary element of the free market system.  And here’s the really big rub:  Neither Obamacare nor the patchwork “fix” cobbled together by Republicans will “fix” healthcare because it does nothing to lower the real cost.  U.S. Healthcare costs are comparatively high due to:

Administrative costs
Defensive medicine costs
Drug costs
Impediments to competition in the market
Absence of a true consumer-producer relationship

That last one’s a biggie.  The educated consumer is a key factor to making products and services affordable, and yet it’s nearly impossible for the average person to be an informed and discerning consumer in a market dictated by deals between insurance companies and medical providers.  If congress really wants to meddle in something, paving the way to transparency and consistency in medical pricing would be a good start.  Defensive medicine costs and impediments to cross-state competition are also areas where congress could help the free market, if they would only do it instead of just talking about it.

Our reliance upon insurance companies who act as the middleman in nearly every doctor-patient transaction also inflates the cost of healthcare.  Insurance was originally designed to protect consumers from large and often unexpected healthcare costs.  Now it’s more of a payment processing system for everything from ingrown toenails on up, which means your doctor has to hire more staff to interface with insurance companies.

Finally, one in every five Americans gets their health care through Medicaid.1   This is an outrageous and inexcusable breach of congress’s fiduciary obligation to American taxpayers.  The vast majority of Medicaid recipients could be and should be paying for their own healthcare, which they might actually be able to do if our merry meddlers in the federal government would ever focus their efforts on reducing the cost of medical services and insurance rather than simply transferring the cost from one person to another.

In sum Republicans aren’t doing themselves or the American people any favors by making the repeal of Obamacare so complicated.  This is the ideal time, with their approval ratings already low and expectations waning, to go bold and rip that Band-Aid off as quickly and cleanly as they can.  Let this be the congress that helps restore the Constitution rather than helping to kill it.


~CW




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Tuesday, June 20, 2017

We’re “All” Guilty. Or Are We?



Ever since the shooting incident in which an unhinged leftist opened fire, terrorist-style, on unarmed Republicans gathered for baseball practice Americans have been deluged with cries from politicians and pundits Left and Right who say that “both sides need to tone down the rhetoric,” as if Republicans and Democrats have been equally guilty of engaging in inappropriately heated and provocative speech.  I can certainly understand why Democrats, who are demonstrably the more vicious and irrational of the two parties, love this misguided narrative of moral equivalency that makes us all equally culpable, but I’m a bit dumbfounded by Republicans who get on the bandwagon.  Do they think throwing everyone under the bus makes them appear more statesman-like?  Are they, like parents settling disputes between children, avoiding the chore of holding the instigators accountable so that they can get on to other things?  Whatever their reasons, it’s a huge mistake to pretend that neither side occupies the moral high ground, because this is what ultimately distinguishes Left from Right.

I don’t recall any public figure on the Right beheading Barack Obama in effigy under the guise of “comedy,” nor do I recall people flocking to theatre productions that depicted the assassination of Barack Obama.  I can’t even begin to imagine the outrage that would have dominated the MSM coverage had Obama been the object of the kind of threatening “speech” routinely aimed at Donald Trump.  This isn’t a matter of civility.   The Left’s veiled threats and violent undertones are signs of their dangerous disdain for our republic, and signify their increasing unwillingness to peacefully share power and be held to the same standards as the rest of us.  It’s critical that we recognize and address this because the leftists are becoming more emboldened, as evidenced by what transpired at that ball park in Virginia.  The “we’re all guilty” mantra is counter-productive to this effort because it undermines accountability.

Having said all that, this is only half the story, and it is the least significant half.  The second and far more consequential half has to do with the construction of this false narrative of moral equivalency with respect to the governing of this nation.   In other words, the Right resisted Barack Obama and the Left is resisting – albeit more violently – Donald Trump, this makes us even or morally equivalent.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

Barack Obama came to office with the dark promise of “transforming America,” which those of us paying close attention rightly understood to mean that he was going to use the power of the presidency to undermine the Constitution as given to us by our Founders, an understanding that was vindicated again and again by Obama’s actions as president.  Obama’s promise was to expand the power of the federal government and to use this expanded power to weaken, if not altogether usurp, our rights as Americans, and it was a promise largely fulfilled.  The Constitution belongs to We the People, and as such we had every right and moral reason to oppose Barack Obama and his government of helpful minions in their attempts to circumvent or redefine it.  Even so, we eschewed violence as a means of doing so, opting instead to oppose the Obama administration by simply exposing the truth about who he was and what he was doing.  It was these truths about Obama’s dishonesties and abuses of power that the Left denounced as “uncivil” in order to bully us into voluntary censorship, a tactic which too many Republicans (the same folks who now want “everyone” to tone down their rhetoric) caved in to.

But that was then and this is now.  Or should I say, that was us and this is them.  With the election of a Republican president it is once again okay, courageous even, to be uncivil, even violently so, just as it is any time a Republican is president, in case you didn’t know.  My question to the Left is this: 

What, pray tell, is the great threat posed to this nation by Donald Trump that supposedly justifies not only your abandonment of the much ballyhooed “civility” but actions and speech laced with threats of violence? 

Trump came to office on the promise of “making America great again,” which he defined as restoring law and order, enforcing U.S. immigration policy, making better deals with other nations, fixing the healthcare mess created by Democrats, appointing judges who will uphold the Constitution, and undoing the lawless tyranny imposed upon us by Barack Obama with his infamous “pen and phone.”  If you have a problem with that, your problem isn’t with Trump, it’s with America and all that it stands for.  What you’re “resisting” is the Constitution, the rule of law, equal justice (not to be confused with “social justice,” which is the opposite of equal justice) and the God-given right of every American to pursue his own self-interest while respecting the rights of others as defined in the Constitution.  Any “rights” that you feel are threatened by Donald Trump – i.e., the “right” to free healthcare, the “right” to be in this country illegally, the “right” to free college and other welfare, the “right” to exclude other Americans from having a say on sweeping climate policies, etc., etc., etc. – are not your rights at all, and your phony “resistance” movement is exposed for what it actually is:  a movement for tyranny. 

It troubles me immensely that the protestors, organizers and other loud mouths declaring their “resistance” to the Trump administration are never asked to explain or defend just what it is they are so violently resisting, and why.  We have become so accustomed to opposition solely for the sake of opposition that we mindlessly give it respect it doesn’t necessarily deserve, and we judge it only by the means with which it is manifested, which is akin to saying that people protesting to free a guilty man from prison are as righteous as those protesting to free an innocent man.  It simply isn’t true, and we’re fools to put up with it.

I, as a conservative, have my own quibbles with Trump.  As such I will make use of my congressional representatives to resist whatever I perceive to be not in keeping with the Founder’s Constitution and the proper role of the presidency.  But the leftists and I share no moral high ground whatsoever.  As I survey the landscape from up here they are, in fact, nowhere in sight.


~CW

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Monday, June 5, 2017

The Left’s INSANE Reaction to Paris Accord Withdrawal Should Mark the End of Taking Them Seriously

“…our withdrawal from the agreement represents a reassertion of America’s sovereignty.”

~President Donald J. Trump, patriot, on his decision to exit the Paris Climate Accords

I’m no great fan of Donald Trump, but as a big fan of objective argumentation and the inherent right to the pursuit of self-interest, I enthusiastically applauded his speech explaining his decision to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris Climate Accords a.k.a. The Big Swindle.  Even with Trump’s ad-libbing I thought he laid out the case for withdrawal in an admirably succinct, compelling and persuasive way for anyone who still embraces logic and believes in the right of Americans to look out for their own economic interests.  Little did I know how small that group has become. 

The following remarks are my selected excerpts from Trump’s June 1st Rose Garden speech announcing the withdrawal.  If you didn’t already hear or read the speech, please peruse them so that the absurdity of the Left’s reactions, discussed afterwards, can be appreciated in full context:

The Paris Climate Accord is simply the latest example of Washington entering into an agreement that disadvantages the United States to the exclusive benefit of other countries….
Compliance with the terms of the Paris Accord and the onerous energy restrictions it has placed on the United States could cost America as much as 2.7 million lost jobs by 2025 according to the National Economic Research Associates.

According to this same study, by 2040, compliance with the commitments put into place by the previous administration would cut production for the following sectors: paper down 12 percent; cement down 23 percent; iron and steel down 38 percent; coal … down 86 percent; natural gas down 31 percent. The cost to the economy at this time would be close to $3 trillion in lost GDP and 6.5 million industrial jobs, while households would have $7,000 less income and, in many cases, much worse than that.

…I cannot in good conscience support a deal that punishes the United States … while imposing no meaningful obligations on the world’s leading polluters.

…under the agreement, China … can do whatever they want for 13 years. Not us. India makes its participation contingent on receiving billions…of dollars in foreign aid from developed countries. There are many other examples. But the bottom line is that the Paris Accord is very unfair, at the highest level, to the United States.

...the agreement doesn’t eliminate coal jobs, it just transfers those jobs out of America and the United States, and ships them to foreign countries.

This agreement is less about the climate and more about other countries gaining a financial advantage over the United States. The rest of the world applauded when we signed the Paris Agreement… for the simple reason that it [put] … the United States of America…at a very, very big economic disadvantage. A cynic would say the obvious reason for economic competitors and their wish to see us remain in the agreement is so that we continue to suffer this self-inflicted major economic wound. We would find it very hard to compete with other countries from other parts of the world.

We have among the most abundant energy reserves on the planet, sufficient to lift millions of America’s poorest workers out of poverty. Yet, under this agreement, we are effectively putting these reserves under lock and key, taking away the great wealth of our nation … and leaving millions and millions of families trapped in poverty and joblessness.

The agreement is a massive redistribution of United States wealth to other countries.
Even if the Paris Agreement were implemented in full, with total compliance from all nations, it is estimated it would only produce a two-tenths of one degree…Celsius reduction in global temperature by the year 2100. … In fact, 14 days of carbon emissions from China alone would wipe out the gains from America — and … would totally wipe out the gains from America’s expected reductions in the year 2030, after we have had to spend billions and billions of dollars, lost jobs, closed factories, and suffered much higher energy costs for our businesses and for our homes.

As the Wall Street Journal wrote this morning: “The reality is that withdrawing is in America’s economic interest and won’t matter much to the climate.”

We will be environmentally friendly, but we’re not going to put our businesses out of work and we’re not going to lose our jobs. We’re going to grow; we’re going to grow rapidly.
I’m willing to immediately work with Democratic leaders to either negotiate our way back into Paris, under the terms that are fair to the United States and its workers, or to negotiate a new deal that protects our country and its taxpayers.

I will work to ensure that America remains the world’s leader on environmental issues, but under a framework that is fair and where the burdens and responsibilities are equally shared among the many nations all around the world.

No responsible leader can put the workers — and the people — of their country at this debilitating and tremendous disadvantage. The fact that the Paris deal hamstrings the United States, while empowering some of the world’s top polluting countries, should dispel any doubt as to the real reason why foreign lobbyists wish to keep our magnificent country tied up and bound down by this agreement: It’s to give their country an economic edge over the United States.

My job as President is to do everything within my power to give America a level playing field and to create the economic, regulatory and tax structures that make America the most prosperous and productive country on Earth, and with the highest standard of living and the highest standard of environmental protection.

The Paris Agreement handicaps the United States economy in order to win praise from the very foreign capitals and global activists that have long sought to gain wealth at our country’s expense. They don’t put America first. I do, and I always will.

The same nations asking us to stay in the agreement are the countries that have collectively cost America trillions of dollars through tough trade practices and, in many cases, lax contributions to our critical military alliance. You see what’s happening. It’s pretty obvious to those that want to keep an open mind.

I was elected to represent the citizens of Pittsburgh, not Paris.

Beyond the severe energy restrictions inflicted by the Paris Accord, it includes yet another scheme to redistribute wealth out of the United States through the so-called Green Climate Fund — nice name — which calls for developed countries to send $100 billion to developing countries all on top of America’s existing and massive foreign aid payments. So we’re going to be paying billions and billions and billions of dollars, and we’re already way ahead of anybody else. Many of the other countries haven’t spent anything, and many of them will never pay one dime.

In 2015, the Green Climate Fund’s executive director reportedly stated that estimated funding needed would increase to $450 billion per year after 2020. And nobody even knows where the money is going to.

America is $20 trillion in debt. Cash-strapped cities cannot hire enough police officers or fix vital infrastructure. Millions of our citizens are out of work. And yet, under the Paris Accord, billions of dollars that ought to be invested right here in America will be sent to the very countries that have taken our factories and our jobs away from us.

Foreign leaders in Europe, Asia, and across the world should not have more to say with respect to the U.S. economy than our own citizens and their elected representatives. Thus, our withdrawal from the agreement represents a reassertion of America’s sovereignty.
Our Constitution is unique among all the nations of the world, and it is my highest obligation and greatest honor to protect it. And I will.

Staying in the agreement could also pose serious obstacles for the United States as we begin the process of unlocking the restrictions on America’s abundant energy reserves, which we have started very strongly. It would once have been unthinkable that an international agreement could prevent the United States from conducting its own domestic economic affairs, but this is the new reality we face if we do not leave the agreement or if we do not negotiate a far better deal.

The risks grow as historically these agreements only tend to become more and more ambitious over time. In other words, the Paris framework is a starting point — as bad as it is — not an end point. And exiting the agreement protects the United States from future intrusions on the United States’ sovereignty and massive future legal liability. Believe me, we have massive legal liability if we stay in.

As President, I have one obligation, and that obligation is to the American people. The Paris Accord would undermine our economy, hamstring our workers, weaken our sovereignty, impose unacceptable legal risks, and put us at a permanent disadvantage to the other countries of the world.

Unless someone can prove that Trump is lying about what’s in the Accord, no sane person could rationally conclude that the Paris Accords were good for America.  The definitive proof of this, the nail in the coffin – so to speak, is the fact that it was negotiated by our former Leftist-in-Chief, Barack Hussein Obama, the most anti-American president in this nation’s history. 

The NYT’s Maureen Dowd writes,

“We’ve been conditioned by Hollywood to see the president of the United States step up to the lectern to confidently tell us how he will combat the existential threat to the planet — be it aliens, asteroids, tidal waves, volcanoes, killer sharks, killer robots or a 500-billion-ton comet the size of New York City.  So it was quite stunning to see the president of the United States step up to the lectern to declare himself the existential threat to the planet.”

Apparently Ms. Dowd has been watching movies as a way of learning about existential threats and presidential heroism.  She got goosebumps when Barack Obama was valiantly saving the planet from killer climate change.  That’s so special, isn’t it?  But seriously, what you’ll note if you read this column by this top-notch, leftwing opinion journalist for the NYT is that she didn’t rebut even a single one of the persuasive points made by Donald Trump.  Her great refutation to Trump consisted entirely of name-calling.  Is that all you’ve got, Maureen?  How pathetic.

From Sasha Abramsky at The Nation: 

“Trump Echoed Hitler in His Speech Withdrawing From the Paris Climate Accord”

Oh no, not Hitler!

From Staff Writer Lauren McCauley at Common Dreams (Breaking News & Views for the Progressive Community):

“'Destructive Fossil Fuel Puppet' Trump Ditches Climate Deal with Fact-Free Speech”

But the closest McCauley’s article comes to challenging Trump’s facts was to say that, “Long-debunked fossil fuel industry talking points about lost jobs and economic "suffering" peppered the speech.”  No link to this supposedly well-known de-bunking was included with the article, naturally.

Nancy Pelosi claimed Trump was “dishonoring God” by pulling out of the Accord.  

Ruh Roh!   It seems that not volunteering to be a whipping boy for the rest of the world dishonors God but supporting abortion does not.

Bernie Sanders said, “Despite Trump’s view that he knows more than virtually the entire scientific community, the American people will move forward and do everything we can to combat the planetary crisis of climate change and I wanted you to know that.”

Everything except make any personal sacrifices, as evidenced by the fact that Sanders is jetting around the world for promotion of his new book.  Apparently “the planetary crisis of climate change” takes a backseat to making money and pursuing political power for the radical Left.

Michael Russnow, Contributor to the The Huffington Post, wrote:

“Now That Trump’s Trashed The Paris Climate Accord: Isn’t This Enough To Discuss Changing The Presidential Election System?”

Mr. Russnow gives no rebuttal whatsoever to the arguments Trump made for withdrawing from the Accord, yet he’s using this “outrage” to justify calling for a national referendum on the way we vote.  Who says there isn’t a method to the Left’s madness?  Not me!

Graham Readfearn of The Guardian wrote:

“Trump’s Paris exit: climate science denial industry has just had its greatest victory”

But Readfearn is yet another leftist who references the “long-debunked” talking points without providing any actual evidence of this famous debunking.  What’s worse is that he obsesses about the supposed denial over climate change while ignoring the economic costs, the absence of requirements for major polluters like China and India, and that tiny, best-case reward for Americans’ great sacrifice. 

The leftists have made it clear that they have no intention of ever engaging in a rational debate with respect to the many reasonable arguments Trump outlined for his decision to pull out of Paris.  Arguments which, by the way, are not Trump’s invention but are those that respected scientists, economists and other concerned Americans have been putting forth all along, only to be silenced by the Left.  Rather than engage in honest debate the Left has preferred to follow the lead of Barack Obama who arrogantly declared many times, “The debate is over.”  Our response to that declaration was the election of Donald Trump. 

I would love nothing more than to sneer that now it’s our turn to say, “The debate is over;” but the truth is that with Donald Trump holding a televised address in the White House Rose Garden to explain to Americans, point by point, why the Paris Accords were a bad deal for this country, the debate has finally just begun.  And for that I thank our president.


~CW

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Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Damn the Enablers

Actually Michael, we're not.

Some of you may remember seeing the news headlines when, in 1997, a mother of six was brutally murdered in the presence of her two-year-old quadruplets at her home in Sarasota, Florida.  Sheila Bellush was ambushed by a paid killer sent by her former husband and father of her two oldest daughters.  Bellush and her second husband, father of the quadruplets, had moved the family from Texas to Florida to escape the stalking and threatening behavior of the ex-husband, who they wisely feared.  The two oldest girls had been warned not to give the family’s new address to their father, but in a phone conversation with the younger one (12 at the time), the ex-husband persuaded the young girl to give him the address, and the sharing of this secret information paved the way for a horrendous crime that tragically altered the lives of Sheila Bellush and all those who loved her.  Such is the power of those who, wittingly or unwittingly, enable people with bad intentions. 

Evil people, or those hell bent on taking advantage of others, will always exist.  It is our curse in life that we must continually defend ourselves against them, but the task is made that much harder, if not impossible, by The Enablers.  You know who they are. 

  •  They are leftwing judges like Monica Herranz who allowed an illegal alien, under arraignment for DUI, to slip out the back door to her judge’s chambers to avoid being deported by waiting ICE agents, even though the judge is employed by the citizens of Multnomah County.  And it is the liberals who defend Herranz rather than stand up for citizens who might have been hurt or killed if the escapee had another drunk-driving incident while ICE was tracking him down.
  •  They are leftists like Michael Moore and others who ignorantly ridiculed protestors fighting to prevent the erection of a giant mosque near the site of 9-11, and who characterize common sense concerns about the spread of Islam in the U.S. as “Islamophobia” in an attempt to shame us into cultural suicide akin to what we’re seeing across Europe, where they are suffering the consequences of their own enablers for all the world to observe. 
  •  They are California Assemblyman Rob Bonta (D-Alameda) and other California democrats who pushed aside more important issues to spend their time passing a bill that prevents the state from firing members of the Communist Party.  Communism has only killed an estimated 94 million people, so let’s make sure we undo any boring old laws that would unfairly prevent its tentacles from reaching into California’s government, right?
  •  They are Barack Obama and his minions who strangely made it their top priority to empty out Guantanamo Bay and to empower terror-loving Iran in a deal aptly described by Charles Krauthammer as “… the worst deal since the Munich deal of 1938.”
  •  They are the politicians who cower to the racist hate group, Black Lives Matter, and who refuse to stand up for all lives, no matter the race.
  • They are legislators in the state of Minnesota who joined Washington state’s challenge to Trump’s temporary travel ban just as Minnesota’s state health commissioner “…sounded an alert on more frequent and costly threats to the public health, referencing measles, tuberculosis, and even the Zika virus and syphilis…” largely attributable to an influx of foreign born carriers.
  •  They are the reporters, journalists and no-border activists who insist on trading in the word “illegal” for the new and improved (i.e. politically correct) term “undocumented” in order to reprogram our minds of any pesky, negative associations we might have been taught with respect to the crime of trespassing. 

And there’s so many more that I’m sure to be forgetting.  Please feel free to add your favorite Enabler to the list. 

recent post by Pesky Truth resident blogger, Kathy, is a testament to the depths to which the ever-helpful Enablers have forced us to sink.  “Illegals demand subsidized healthcare, housing from Columbia University,” as reported in campusreform.org, includes a link to a list of galling demands by a group of students who don’t even have the legal right to be here, much less make demands upon their fellow human beings for free this and that.  In a sane world – i.e., a world without The Enablers – this would be laughed off and dismissed followed by the unceremonious dragging away of the undocumented snowflakes (CW’s note:  it is okay to use the term “undocumented” ONLY when it is followed by an appropriately insulting term such as “snowflake”) by ICE.  But thanks to The Enablers and the precedent they’ve helped set for legitimizing every clown who pounds his puny fist on the table, it isn’t funny.  Instead it represents yet another threat to our disappearing freedom to just say, “No.”

Getting back to the tragic story of Sheila Bellush, a 12-year old child can be, and should be, forgiven for lacking the maturity to comprehend the danger that her actions would bring and for the selfishness, typical of children, to put her own desires ahead of the safety of her family.  But what excuse is there for the Monica Herranz’s, the Michael Moore’s and the Barack Obama’s of this world?  Indeed, what excuse is there for the hundreds of millions, if not billions, of Enablers who, year after year, decade after decade, ignore the lessons of history and the pleas of their fellow citizens and become the Enablers to those intent on tearing down or taking over everything we’ve built?

There is no excuse.  Damn the Enablers.


~CW


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