Friday, May 19, 2017

The Trump Juggernaut and the Jerks

Since President Trump was inaugurated on January 20, 2017, a number of people have scrupulously monitored his accomplishments. They include Sean Hannity's producer Sweet Baby James, Gateway Pundit founder Jim Hoft, conservative commentator and former presidential candidate Gary Bauer, and Jeff Dunetz, creator of the blog The Lid, among others. The listing below was compiled by the above-mentioned people and represents many but not all of the non-stop accomplishments of President Trump--the juggernaut--during his first three months in office.

But the list does not elaborate on the accomplishments of the first three weeks of the fourth month, which include, among other things, the completion of his cabinet appointments, signing a cybersecurity executive order for a sweeping review of the federal government's digital vulnerabilities and the adoption of specific security practices; an unprecedented trade deal with China involving certain foods, natural gas, and biotech products; creating a voter-fraud commission to clean up the system; preparation for a devastating cyberattack against America's electric grid; and the firing of FBI Director James Comey.

Nor is there any mention of the hundreds if not thousands of personal phone calls the president has made to shakers and movers in the U.S. as well as world leaders.

If these accomplishments are not familiar, that's because 99 percent of the media--the jerks--are a de facto arm of the Democratic National Committee and the far-left fringe, and are so terminally distressed by the fact that Mr. Trump won the presidency that they obstinately refuse to report what by any objective standards is the news. This is because:

They've been pushing leftist values for well over a half century and are unable to admit that their anti-Trump, pro-Hillary message was an utter and complete failure.

They are part and parcel of the vast, contaminated, rancid, crooked, pay-for-play, corrupt swamp that candidate Trump promised to drain, and President Trump is now draining.

The man they mock--for his syntax and phrasing, style of governing, unpredictability, and so-called contradictions--has both confounded and trumped them at every turn.

This is why they remain fixated on the fairy tale of a Trump-Russian connection. They have nothing else--as in nothing!


After Pres. Trump's first month in office:

235,000 jobs were added to our economy in February, 100,000 more than expected; 40 percent fewer illegal immigrants crossed our border; $3 trillion was added to the stock market; Judge Gorsuch, a constitutionalist worthy of Justice Scalia's seat, was nominated to the Supreme Court.

In his first 100 days:

appointments of Vice President Mike Pence, pro-life conservative;
Justice Neil Gorsuch, an originalist committed to the Constitution;

Attorney General Jeff Sessions, staunch conservative committed to the rule of law;

Defense Secretary James Mattis, a warrior committed to restoring America's military;

Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly, a former general committed to border security;

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, a former CEO who understands how the real world works;

Housing and Urban Development Secretary Dr. Ben Carson, a brain surgeon from a humble background;

Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, a doctor who understands health care;

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, an advocate of school choice and educational reform;

Energy Secretary Rick Perry, former governor of Texas and expert on the energy industry;

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, former CEO who understands the business world;

EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, a conservative committed to reining in big government;

U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, a fearless advocate for American values;

U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman, a true friend of Israel;

White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon, a conservative warrior against crony capitalism and the left;

National Security Adviser Lt. Gen. H. R. McMaster, an accomplished military commander;

and White House Counterterrorism Adviser Sebastian Gorka, committed to defeating radical Islam.

President Trump:

restored the U.S. alliance with Israel and welcomed Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to the White House;

restored U.S. leadership in the world;

enforced red lines against the use of chemical weapons in Syria;
dropped the Mother of All Bombs (MOAB) on ISIS, sending a clear message to Iran and North Korea;

secured the Chinese cooperation in pressuring North Korea and the release of Aya Hijazi, American charity worker held in Egypt since 2014;

imposed a five-year ban on lobbying the government by former White House officials and a lifetime ban on lobbying for foreign governments by former White House officials;

repeatedly called out the liberal media for "fake news";

repealed Obama mandate that forced states to fund Planned Parenthood;

signed executive order reinstating Reagan policy against taxpayer funding of overseas abortions;

stopped U.S. funding to the United Nations Population Fund, which promotes abortions.

signed the following Executive Orders: to mandate a comprehensive plan to defeat ISIS, to begin construction of the border wall and hire additional 5,000 border agents, to order the Justice Department to cut funding to sanctuary cities, to institute a temporary federal hiring freeze, to institute a travel ban on individuals from a select number of countries embroiled in terrorist atrocities; to withdraw from the Transpacific Partnership trade deal, to mandate that two regulations will be repealed for every new one issued, to institute a comprehensive approach to illegal immigration and crime; et al.



Pres. Trump issued orders to seek increased penalties for crimes against police; to promote energy independence; to put American companies and workers first; to review federal regulations in education; to investigate national security impact of foreign steel imports; to require an audit of executive branch agencies;
to order every agency to create a regulatory reform task force; to roll back Obama environmental infringements on private property.

In addition:

Pres. Trump issued orders to prevent future taxpayer-funded bailouts; to reverse Obama restrictions on offshore energy development; for a major review of national monument designations on federal lands; to establish a new office to reform the Veterans Administration bureaucracy; to address concerns of Rural America; to establish a White House Initiative on historically Black Colleges and Universities; to create a commission on drug addiction and the opioid crisis; to combat transnational criminal organizations and international trafficking; to repeal the following:

Obama's transgender public school bathroom mandate, Obama's "Stream Protection Rule" that has hurt the coal industry, Obama's Social Security Administration's gun ban, Obama's Labor "blacklisting" rule with $500 million in regulatory costs, Obama's Interior rule that restricted state and local authority in land use decisions, Obama's unfunded education mandate that created new standards for teachers, Obama's education rule that undermined state and local control, Obama's regulation that prevented drug testing for unemployment compensation, Obama's rule that banned some hunting in Alaska, Obama's regulation that created vastly more paperwork and reporting of worker injuries,  Obama's regulations on Internet Service Providers, Obama's rule that allowed states to force workers into government-run savings plans, and the Dodd-Frank regulations that disadvantaged domestic companies.

Going further:

Pres. Trump Imposed sanctions on Iran for its ballistic missile violations and human rights violations; Ordered review of the Iranian nuclear deal; Produced a budget that cut $54 billion from bloated federal bureaucracies, that would eliminate 50 programs and more than 3,000 federal jobs, and that boosted spending for defense, homeland security and veterans; produced a tax-reform plan that simplifies the tax code and reduces taxes for businesses and families; Approved construction of the Keystone XL pipeline and the Dakota Access pipeline; shut down illegal  immigrant advocacy program at Department of Justice; Established Victims of Immigration Crime Engagement (VOICE) office; Reduced illegal immigration at the border by 61 percent;
Called for "major investigation" of voter fraud led by Vice President Mike Pence; Called for repeal of the Johnson Amendment, which limits free speech of pastors and churches; Called for 50 percent cut in funding to the United Nations; supported English as official language by dropping Spanish version of the White House website; Purged "climate change" alarmism from White House website; Returned bust of Winston Churchill to the Oval Office;
Succeeded in getting NATO nations to boost defense spending by $10 billion; Halted $180 billion in Obama regulations; Signed legislation expanding private healthcare options for veterans;
Relaxed Rules of Engagement in the fight against ISIS; Imposed sanctions on Venezuelan vice president for international drug trafficking.


At this early point:

Consumer confidence is the highest in 17 years; Small business confidence highest in 11 years; Stock market is up 10 percent since inauguration, up 15 percent since election; Exxon Mobil announced $20 billion-45,000 job expansion in U.S.; Charter Communications announced $25 billion expansion, creating 20,000 jobs in U.S.; Accenture announced $1.4 billion expansion, creating 15,000 jobs in U.S.; Intel announced $7 billion expansion, creating 10,000 jobs in the U.S. Pres. Trump ordered renegotiation of North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with Canada and Mexico; Named former Congressman Scott Garrett, an outspoken critic of the Export-Import Bank to the bank's Board of Directors

Today, U.S. unemployment is at its lowest level since 1988!  The U.S. debt decreased by $100 billion during Pres. Trump's first hundred days; the U.S. Manufacturing Index soared to a 33-year high! In the first month alone, he added 298,000 jobs; housing sales are off the charts right 2011, the average time a house was on the market was 84 days, now, it's just 45 days; illegal immigration is down 67% since the Inauguration; NATO announced Allied spending is up $10 billion.

This Mt. Everest of accomplishments belongs to a man who is straight out of central casting. Every day, he looks like a million dollars and is stunningly successful in his dealings with everyone from heads of state to manual laborers to ardent fans to entrenched skeptics. Every day, he brings both ebullience and laser-like focus to a job he clearly relishes, displays admirable courage in making hard choices, and is zooming along at warp speed to Make America Great Again!

All this while never hesitating to take on the sacred cows of the leftist jerks among us --political correctness and global warming rank high--and to illuminate the public about the widespread scourge of the fake news and fake polls that those same leftist jerks tried but failed to foist upon us in the November election.

It was easy for the media when all they had to do was pretend that 94-million unemployed citizens, a weakened military, alienated allies, a genocidal Iran deal, and unprecedented escalation of Muslim Brotherhood operatives implanted in the highest reaches of our government, and an increase in the national debt by $9 trillion to almost $20 trillion, were nothing to worry about--all while they asked the guy in the Oval Office what his favorite ice-cream flavor was!

Now there's a grown-up in charge and the children among us (Democrats, leftists, progressives, whatever they're calling themselves these days) are as ineffectual--indeed, impotent--as they were when Donald J. Trump announced for the presidency in June of 2015.

Wanna see Democrats and media hacks weep? Hand them this list!



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH,  POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


Thursday, May 18, 2017

Memo to President Trump – don't lose focus; after 100 days you are making a difference

Not that you would read it in the "attack Trump media" but the president is making good on some of his campaign promises, and it appears some of his early efforts are paying off.  But with forces against traditional America, and the Trump agenda, and the omnipresent attacks designed to derail his policies, this is a dangerous time for POTUS, and for America.

From an objective perspective, President Trump has done some pretty strong actions to protect the United States, and in the process has sent a very clear message to friends and foes alike. Of course the message came with a sonic boom, at least 50 of them in response to Syrian chemical weapons use. And I would bet some of the bad guys in Afghanistan who survived the MOAB still have a Mecca sized case of tinnitus.

As for China, the Donald's subtle announcement between dinner and dessert that he's just launched a bunch of missiles into Syria without having to get global consensus or provide the silly preamble of Obama and his useless lines in the sand. China immediately took notice, and the diplomat took an antacid. In case the cruise missiles and threatening NATO to step up or we step out weren't enough, MOAB (big bomb go boom) should have sent the message that the US is no longer being run by a globalist, a weakling, or an apologist. For those activities alone, Trump should get at least an A- for his first 100 days. And God forbid we ever get another ‘weaken the US, globalist POTUS.'  A new sheriff is in town. Will that make us safer? Well at least the bad guys know there is more than 1 bullet in Trumps gun!


Speaking of NATO apparently some of our Euro allies may let the moths out of their wallets as well as start looking under the sofa cushions to start paying more towards their fair share of NATO.  Germany has lagged well behind several nations, and yet is financially capable of ponying up the cash.  The media will say those plans were in the works for years; referencing Obama years no doubt. If that's the case, Obama didn't have much to show for it! Call that a small potential win for Trump.  


Shortly after President Trump took the oath of office, there has been a demonstrable slowing in the flood of illegal aliens across our Southern border; it has been significant, important, and shock of shocks, underreported or misreported in the media. From a variety of sources the tide of folks crossing our borders has slowed exponentially from the days of Tammany Hall Obama, where every illegal was merely an undocumented Democrat. Let's be clear - we are an immigrant nation. But illegal aliens by definition are not immigrants, and the hijacking of language from authentic to obfuscating is what makes difficult a legitimate discussion of immigration policy.

No one wants to harm kids or separate families. But no one should be so naïve as to think the massive influx of mostly illiterate aliens is beneficial to the communities they enter (overcrowding of schools, with strains on police, public services, housing, emergency departments), unless you think the US is one big global ATM for any and all takers. Do some illegals contribute to society? Yes, of course. But communities have a culture, and a right to foster the social consciousness that multigenerational efforts have created. That's why we have managed immigration. No one can argue against the fact that many immigrants, from the Italians, Irish, Jews, Germans, Chinese, Polish, Armenians (and the list goes on) have made the US a better nation. And, they came in the front door, got jobs, learned the language, put their kids through school, and in a short time had contributed greatly to the national landscape.

That is the right way for immigration. Not a leave the back door open policy where everyone from the illiterate to the criminal - almost all of whom will go on welfare - come in, and become a massive dependency class, and place where drugs, crime and human trafficking are more likely to occur. Should we help people? Yes. Should we implement societal suicidal? No! Trump is correct - come in the front door where there is a big welcome mat with a generous nation awaiting you.


From the perspective of a security professional, the targeting and arresting of members of MS13 is a strong first move! Many of my colleagues and I have argued for years that gangs such as MS 13 should be categorized as terrorist organizations, and treated accordingly, using the full weight of federal laws against them, and against all who support their activities, including politicians. We'll talk more on that in another article.

Gang activities are also enhanced by illegal alien migration, and often involve crossing state and international lines.

Having chaired a transnational crime council it is evident that large gangs in the United States are in fact terrorist support groups (criminals of the world uniting) as well as transnational corporations with ties to terrorism, non-state enterprises, and in some cases work with and for sovereign states, including our own politicians in the US. Gangs such as MS13 are merchants of death, dealing in human misery. Gangs earn their living, and it is often in the millions of dollars per week, from human trafficking, weapons, drugs, transportation of illegal goods, and running various forms of protection shakedowns to innocent businesspeople.

Trump is correct - gangs have to be weakened. Local police can't fully handle the load often because political cover is provided to gangs, or because the "R" (racist) card gets levied at them, in spite of the fact most residents in poor urban regions would be better off without gangs. Doubt me? Check out Chicago. Gangs and gang violence wouldn't exist if the local politicians weren't providing some political cover, and getting something in return.  And residents in those communities die because of it. Yet they still support the politicians. It boggles the mind! A federal response is needed. Go get them Trump!

Too early for a report card?

From a foreign policy and domestic security perspective, Trump is making progress. He must avoid losing focus because of the media, the attacks on his campaign, and the concerted efforts of democrats (and some republicans), professional protestor groups and others aligned to derail his America First promise to those who elected him.



Is America becoming a nation of parasites -- people who want everything at the expense of others?

Americans and our society, by and large progressives of both parties and independents, have become a wilting, withering mass of weak, needy cry-babies, who have departed far and away from the strength of back, intellect and character of America's Founders, who created a system that none other has ever equaled. Rather than follow along the path that made America a strong, economically thriving and prosperous nation, many Americans, especially Millennials, pursue petty and paltry pleasures, as would a sloth and a glutton, and claim their slightest whim to be a "right".

Some things like food, shelter, clothing, water and healthcare are critical to our life, however, they are not "rights". Even if they were made rights, this would set in motion a confiscatory requirement to satisfy that right at the expense of others, much as America currently chafes against our current welfare system.

Just as many of us witnessed Tennessee's House Democrats release a collection of fifty bills called "The People's Bill of Rights" in February 2017, more and more, America hears a clamor from their progressive countrymen of all rank and file, for wants and desires to be provided through government funds, the taxpayers' dollars. Now, not only do many across the nation demand healthcare as a right, they also demand a $15 per hour minimum wage and free university educations among other items.

My good friend, retired U.S. Army Colonel Kurt Schlicter, editor for Townhall, tweeted back: "Guns are in the Bill of Rights, but they aren't one [according to Democrats]. The right to have one pay for your healthcare is not [in the Bill of Rights], but it's a right?"

In a study published by the Heritage Foundation, Robert Rector and Rachel Sheffield found  in the ranks of America's contemporary poor, that eighty percent have air-conditioning, fifty percent own a personal computer and can access the internet and two-thirds have cable TV. A household receiving $50,000 in welfare benefits is still considered poor, if its pre-welfare income falls below the poverty line, even though they are living, in many respects, better than the middle class of 1964.

According to Rector and Sheffield, our government has spent $22 trillion of U.S. taxpayer dollars fighting poverty, since 1964 and President Johnson's Great Society. The study also documented and charted $1 trillion spent annually on 90 means-tested welfare programs.

Over one hundred years of Marxist propaganda, the kind found in President Woodrow Wilson's treatise entitled 'Constitutional Government in the United States' and President Franklin Roosevelt's 1944 'Second Bill of Rights', seems to have done its mischief well. Arguing for corrupting the Constitution, Wilson saw it as a vessel to further the progressives' agenda, while FDR viewed it as a means to assure equality, "economic security" and the pursuit of happiness. Wilson spoke of our rights as "privilege", and FDR framed them as "political rights".

Our rights are God-given and natural, and they exist simultaneously among all people. The rights of free speech, freedom of religion, trial by jury, freedom from unreasonable searches and seizures -- to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness -- are inalienable rights;and, they are not privileges to be granted or rescinded, in the manner some past presidents, Obama included, would transform them. And in the pursuit of "true individual freedom" through "economic security", Roosevelt and Obama offered the antithesis of the right to one's own private property.

A true right does not impose any obligation on another. One's rights to free speech, religious liberty, self-defense and assembly. among others, impose no obligations on anyone else, except to allow each other to use these rights without interference.

Ayn Rand wrote in 1961 ['Man's Rights']; "If some men are entitled by right to the product of the work of others, it means that those others are deprived of rights and condemned to slave labor."

In the meantime, Americans rename privilege and benefits "their right", while ignoring their own misguided lifestyle and poor choices. Too many Americans spend more than they save, and too many prefer the government security blanket over the pride of one's own independence.

Some Americans bemoan the public corruption our country is suffering and the associated moral and constitutional crises. However, the country on the whole has failed to promote the values that would have prevented it. Corrupt leaders continue to advocate and implement measures that negatively impact businesses and families, that also limit individual liberty and true free-market capitalism, expanding government in the process.

Other Americans have become fanatics for their various causes. They are in the streets ironically, demanding their own demise, as they protest against their own self-determination and for ever more autocracy and authoritarianism. When they vote, they vote to enslave not only their fellow countrymen but themselves, however unwittingly. They accept the collectivization of rights, and soon they will accept the collectivization of property.

Sadly, this trend towards fascism, this malaise, has permeated the ranks of our country's future leaders, our children, and it has left them with false expectations. Outside family, churches and communities, the marketplace is the vanguard for moral truths in a free market society, and positively influencing the community through clear decent and moral principles, Judeo-Christian principles, improves businesses and betters people's lives. In asking the next generation to return to a true capitalist value-based society, America's conservatives ask for something that has not existed in their lifetime, but it is necessary to avoid self-induced destruction, and to ask is righteous.

Freedom and moral truths and the strength of men's will in a free society, unfettered by superfluous regulations, enabled America to succeed. They are the facilitators that fuel innovation, support free-thinkers and encourage people worldwide to become who they choose to be, not who the state demands they must be. When government guarantees equality and "economic security", it suppresses creativity, ingenuity and reward systems that enable people and nations to grow and prosper. Have Americans learned nothing from history?



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH,  POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Trump's "leak" to Russia

Just my two cent's worth:  General McMaster is a most impressive man so his swingeing rejection of the "leak" story is persuasive.  The theologians of Leftism say that he did not answer the exact allegations but that is a stretch.  He was pretty comprehensive in what he said.

Be that as it may, the coverup is brilliant. Saying the information came from Israel is both believable and harmless.  Everybody knows that Israeli intelligence is brilliant and that Israel shares intelligence with the USA, so the whole thing has become: "Move along.  Nothing to see here".

And Trump can't win over Russia.  If he is hostile to Russia, he is a warmonger and if he is friendly to prominent Russians, he is "in cahoots" with Vlad the impaler.  And I have long ago lost count of the number of times the media have declared Trump "finished" over some minor matter.

UPDATE:  More media madness. The Media Research Center’s recent all-day study of CNN’s coverage found that they spent a whopping 13 hours and 27 minutes in just one day covering President Trump. Furthermore, a full 92% of the coverage was negative.

Does Christ influence Leftists too?

It's unlikely that he has much effect on their behaviour but he clearly has a lot of influence on their arguments.  They work within a Christian value system.  Their devotion to political correctness, for instance, is based on an avowed aim not to hurt the feelings of minorities.  And being kind to others, in particular being kind to the disadvantaged, is a major Christian message:  "Blessed are the meek for they shall inherit the earth" (Matthew 5:5).

The Left don't of course see themselves as preaching Christian values.  They think they are just appealing to what most people would agree with.  They don't look at WHERE those values come from.  And they do of course come from hundreds of years of Christian culture. Many people are no longer Christian but the values their culture gives them are of Christian origin.

A good way of seeing that is to look at our own culture before the arrival of Christianity.  There are only a few literary remnants of it left but one that we do have is revealing:  Beowulf, an epic Anglo-Saxon poem.  It takes you into a quite alien world but it is the world of the people from whom we are mostly descended.  It is unlikely that there is much genetic difference between us and them.

In Beowulf, the prime virtue is heroism in battle.  And the King is not a dictator who is always telling us how to behave.  He is simply a "giver of rings" -- someone who gives formal recognition to heroism. He does NOT reward people for being kind to the poor and lowly. Physical strength and prowess is the dominant value in that world. The meek are certainly not blessed there.  Quite to the contrary.

So the Left do pay homage to Christian values, albeit indirectly. They actually PROPAGATE Christian values, while not realizing that they are doing that.  They really do preach: "Blessed are the meek".

A Christian correspondent has further thoughts on the matter which I append below:


Even those “spiritual” lefties who despise Christianity and like to say “I’m spiritual not religious”, in the same breath call themselves humanitarians, egalitarians, etc., thus showing they do have quasi-religious attitudes. And they all hold Christianity as their reference point from which they have conjured up their leftist alternative to Christianity, and they use all the Christian concepts like non-judgemental, caring, so they are Christianised in the sense that they are what they are because of Christianity.

They would not have their ideas if not for Jesus teaching them, and themselves perverting them into their alternative, and they have made hollow poor replicas.

Leftism/lefties are the anti-Christs that John talks about that came into the world with Jesus’s message. John said that “They went out from us but are not of us.” (1 John 2:19).  John predicted the rise of Anti-Christs: People focused on Christ but enemies of him.

Every teacher of anything cannot help but also teach the opposite concept and those with dark hearts  will get the opposite idea automatically without the teacher saying it, just because that is the way they are.

Teaching something good makes bad people worse. Just like giving cognitive behavioural therapy to psychopaths just makes them better manipulators of others. In that same way Jesus created  leftism, or rather, he brought it here as the opposite concept to his own teachings.

He certainly made leftism as extreme, cunning and powerful as it is in the West today because he divided and widened our hearts with his teachings, gave each a wider potential for good and evil, he gave our hearts their extreme left-right potential, as Socrates did our minds. That is the sword that divides us that Jesus mentioned.

Not all westerners are Christian, but all westerners are Christianised, because the wide left-right expanse of the western heart is the result of Christianity. Jesus knew what he was creating in this world. His teachings are full of advice and examples of how to differentiate between his teachings and leftism.

He used the Lefties/hypocrites of his time [e.g. the Pharisees] as examples of what not to be like, (and they were only dumb and mild ones compared to the cunning treacherous ones of today) knowing that with his teachings on love that he was widening the left-right potential of human hearts and that the future lefties would be even more left, cunning and treacherous than what they were then.  He was teaching greater love/goodness than existed at that time, and that would in turn be matched in extent on the left, for the more love/goodness existed in the world, the more love/goodness they would have to learn to fake, like a see-saw getting longer on one side must get longer on the other side to stay level.  


Obama’s Secretary of Defense Debunks The Russian Conspiracy

Former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates is casting doubt on the claim that former national security adviser Michael Flynn opened himself up to blackmail by the Russian government by making misleading statements about his phone calls with Russia’s ambassador.

“In all honesty, I think it’s kind of a stretch,” Gates said Sunday when asked about the Flynn blackmail theory during an interview on CBS News’ “Face the Nation.”

The claim that Flynn was a prime blackmail target of the Kremlin was made last week by former Acting Attorney General Sally Yates.

Yates testified at a Senate hearing that she warned White House general counsel Donald McGahn about Flynn and his contacts with the ambassador, Sergey Kislyak. Flynn misled Vice President Mike Pence about the calls by claiming that he and Kislyak did not discuss sanctions.



Leftist Ideology's Greatest Threat: Guilt-Free Americans

"In the last 50 years of culture wars in America, there has been no stronger weapon than guilt. It is the Left's great hammer of progress." —Mark Bauerlein, Professor of English at Emory University

In an insightful column for American Greatness, Bauerlein nails the Left's fundamental reason for despising Donald Trump. "He has no white guilt. He doesn't feel any male guilt, either, or American guilt or Christian guilt," Bauerlein explains. "He talks about the United States with uncritical approval — 'America First' — and that's a thought crime in the eyes of liberals."

That particular thought crime roils leftists most, because it is the antithesis of Barack Obama's eight-year effort to "fundamentally transform the United States of America" into a nation where collective guilt would supplant American exceptionalism as society's prevailing ethos. "Donald Trump would never refer to America as beset by the original sin of racism, as Barack Obama did frequently, and that makes him worse than a conservative," Bauerlein writes. "President Trump is a bigot."

Is there a drum the Left beats louder than the assertion America is an inherently racist nation? For leftist demagogues, history is more about the failure of "dead white Europeans," a.k.a. the Founding Fathers, to eliminate slavery when it was impossible to do so, than it is about America being one of the first nations to end the worldwide-accepted practice, enduring a bloody war that cost 600,000 lives.

Moreover, more than 150 years after the Thirteenth Amendment was ratified, Americans must remain guilty. Thus Georgetown Professor Michael Eric Dyson, who accused Trump of having a "vast ignorance of black life," advocates the establishment of Individual Reparations Accounts, whereby white Americans who never practiced slavery compensate black Americans who never experienced it. In New Orleans, history itself is being eliminated, as workers remove Confederate monuments that "offend" progressive sensibilities.

All while black students demand — and receive — segregated housing accommodations on campuses across the nation.

Trump buys none of it. "When during the course of the campaign Mr. Trump refused to accept any guilt, the frustration and disbelief among the Democrats and the media were obvious," Bauerlein notes.

That's hardly surprising. Guilt — brilliantly sold as "political correctness" to make it more palatable for an unsuspecting public — has enjoyed a long and prosperous run. One that allowed leftists to dismiss every challenge to their agenda with epithets designed to simultaneously induce guilt and end debate. Americans opposed to open borders, or sanctuary cities? Xenophobes. Americans who eschew the LGBT agenda? Trans- and homophobic. Americans who question "refugees" from terror-torn nations being granted asylum? Islamophobic. And so on and so forth.

"If you can persuade an opponent that he's wrong about a political issue, you can win the day's debate," Bauerlein explains. "But if you can make him feel guilty about his opinion, you've got him on the defensive forever."

In two sentences the professor has described an eternally defensive GOP that controls Congress, the White House, and a plethora of legislative seats nationwide, yet still allows the Left to frame the agenda.

This dynamic of leftist guilt-mongering and GOP acquiescence to it set the stage for a man who "was going to shake things up, drain the swamp, expose that there wasn't a dime's worth of difference between the parties, and if he offended his adversaries along the way, well, so be it," writes Washington Beacon columnist Matthew Continetti, who nonetheless believes Trump "doesn't face crises so much as manufacture them."

No doubt. But for millions of Americans those crises, and the character flaws that engender them, pale in comparison to Trump's ability to put the American Left on the defensive.

Instead of "bitter clinging" Americans in "flyover country" being forced to defend themselves, the focus shifted to bi-coastal progressive elitists with flimsy explanations regarding why "net" gains for the nation as a whole were more important than economically devastated Americans left behind by an emerging New World Order — one that disproportionately benefited the globalist-minded "progressive" elitists who championed it.

"Progressives" who couldn't imagine their systematic contempt for "deplorable" Americans would ultimately cost them the election.

"Progressives" who still don't get it. According to a PPRI-Atlantic survey, Trump voters were motivated by fears of "cultural displacement," a rationalization rightly dismissed by National Review columnist Michael Brendan Dougherty as "one of the latest attempts to assure liberals and leftists that Trump supporters are unsympathetic."

What's really wearing out millions of Americans is $20 trillion of national debt, out-of-control agencies like the NSA, DOJ, FBI, EPA and IRS, a de facto invasion by millions of illegal aliens, public schools and universities that resemble indoctrination centers, and a mainstream media virtually indistinguishable from George Orwell's Ministry of Truth.

And maybe, just maybe, the real reason Trump prevailed was an electorate faced with a binary choice decided to go with a highly problematic candidate instead of a thoroughly corrupt one — or the great unknown rather than an utterly untenable status quo.

"Donald Trump's success, then, amounts to a calamitous disarmament of the Left," Bauerlein concludes. "Not his occupation of the White House, but his termination of the game of guilt — for now, at least. Since the election, progressives have only amplified the charges. More and more, the protests look less like political speech and more like tantrums."

That's because they are tantrums, thrown by people who never imagined their "immutable truths" would be unmasked as the self-serving, guilt-inducing opinions they truly are. Moreover, leftists may be digging a much deeper hole than they realize: Trump's dismissal of leftist guilt games is hugely problematic for them. Millions of Americans dismissing a burden they never should have carried around in the first place?

For America's "social justice warriors," that's a calamitous disarmament of potentially catastrophic proportions.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH,  POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


Tuesday, May 16, 2017

The puzzle of Matt. 5:38-41

In Matthew’s report of the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus says: “Ye have heard that it hath been said, ‘An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth,’ but I say unto you, that ye resist not evil; but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.  And if any man will sue thee at the law, and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloak also.  And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain.”

Mainstream Christians essentially ignore this pretty clear instruction.  They go to war, they fight back, they sue etc.  It is only some of the smaller denominations who take it seriously: Traditional Quakers, Seventh Day Adventists, Jehovah's Witnesses etc.  I respected my Bible from an early age so, at around age 14, I became a pacifist in obedience to that scripture.  Not long after I became an atheist, I joined the army.

But the reason why the scripture is mostly ignored is that it runs against all nature.  No-one naturally behaves that way.  It is anti-instinctual.  But despite my defection from Christianity, I have always wondered if I was missing something in that teaching.  And I now think I was.

As any serious Bible student will tell you, context can be enormously important in studying scripture.  The "proof-text" approach to exegesis can easily get it wrong.  You have to study what went before and after a passage as well as the passage itself.

So what context do we need to understand Matthew 5:38ff?  Is it the commandment to love others as ourselves?  That would certainly fit as equally unrealistic. But "I came not to bring peace but a sword" (Matthew 10:34) would seem an outright contradiction.

I think the context we need is in fact the whole of the Gospels.  We have to look at the whole message of the Gospels.  And that message is that Jesus knew from the beginning he was a new and different teacher and that his difference would get him killed.  And he saw great meaning in his life and death.  And the time he spent teaching his disciples tells us that he did not see his death as the end of his message.  He wanted his teachings to survive and be passed on. And exactly that happened, of course.

But part of his foresight was that his disciples would be persecuted -- so it was important that he give them ways of surviving that.  He had to tell them to behave in a way that would protect them.  He had to give them what modern-day psychologists call "de-escalation techniques".  Above all else they had to avoid getting killed by hostile others.  And in Matthew 5:38ff he taught exactly how.  He taught his disciples to be unthreatening and even likable when confronted with hostility.  He was giving them lessons in survival against great threat -- things to do right from that point onwards, not rules for all times and all situations.  And when modern-day psychologists look at his rules they will see that his de-escalation techniques were pretty good. You can turn down hostility if you go about it the right way.

So Matthew 5:38ff was the practical aspect of his teachings.  What at first sight seems totally impractical was in fact superbly practical. The survival of Christianity attests to that. -- JR


A totally unhinged health-care debate

by Jeff Jacoby

Democrats protest in front of a Harlem school last week before the expected visit of House Speaker Paul Ryan.
THE ANONYMOUS comment sections of many publications are notorious for their incivility and malignant smears. But in the debate over replacing Obamacare with a Republican alternative, the American Health Care Act, the online trolls and fever-swamp fanatics have been hard to distinguish from mainstream politicians, journalists, and commentators.

Listen to some what passes for political discourse these days.

"Donald Trump and Republicans just celebrated voting to let thousands of Americans die so that billionaires get tax breaks." Those are the words of a prominent US senator.
"They" — Republican House members who voted for the AHCA — "should be lined up and shot. That's not hyperbole; blood is on their hands." So fumes a professor at the Art Institute of Washington.

"I hope every GOPer who voted for Trumpcare sees a family member get long-term condition, lose insurance, and die. I want the GOPers who support this to feel the pain in their own families. . . . I want them to be tortured." Those sentiments are expressed via Twitter by a senior writer at Newsweek.
"The GOP Plan For Obamacare Could Kill More People Each Year Than Gun Homicides." That's the headline in Vox, a popular news and opinion website.

There is no shortage of additional examples, just as enraged or hysterical.

So much fury over dead Americans! So much loathing for ghouls who murdered them! A neophyte in the public square, encountering all this shrieking about blood and killing, might imagine that the nation was erupting over a military operation gone wrong, or a plot to release terrorists from supermax prisons.

But this is what discussions of public policy sound like now — even when the issues in contention are about insurance subsidies and Medicaid waivers, not war and peace. The most deranged charges are casually lobbed at political opponents, with little regard for truth. Political debate in America has grown so poisonous that it no longer comes as a shock to hear Democrats accuse Republicans of favoring changes in Obamacare because they want people to die. It isn't only nameless crazies in some unpaved alley of the internet who verbalize a desire to see conservatives "lined up and shot." Now writers for well-known newsmagazines tweet such vitriol too.

Some progressives justify the shredding of civil discourse; with Trump in the White House, they say, courtesy is a luxury the nation can't afford. "America, don't be polite in the face of demagoguery," exhorts Jessica Valenti in the Guardian. Representative Ruben Gallego, an Arizona Democrat, is likewise unapologetic about resorting to rhetorical brutality. "This is a new time in politics where people are just blatantly lying and essentially producing policies that are going to kill people," Gallego tells CNN. "I think the old time of civility needs to go until we actually go back to the rules."

Trump's crude insults and noisome vulgarity are foul indeed. But the "old time of civility" was crumbling long before Trump entered national politics. An endless array of revolting political slanders was hurled against George W. Bush, for example — that he was a Nazi, that he ought to be assassinated, that he had advance knowledge of the 9/11 attacks. Those attacks came not just from moonbats on the far-left fringe, but from respectable, mainstream pundits and politicians.

The collapse of respectful discourse in public life began decades ago. And if for many years it was a more common phenomenon on the left, too many on the right have learned to traffic in wild accusations and hateful talking points as well.

It was a Republican, Senator Tom Coburn of Oklahoma, who told senior citizens back in 2009 that if the Affordable Care Act passed, "you're going to die soon." It was Representative Michele Bachmann, another Republican, who railed on the House floor that Obamacare "literally kills women, kills children, kills senior citizens." It was Sarah Palin, a GOP governor and vice-presidential nominee, who warned that under the ACA, the sick and the elderly would "have to stand in front of Obama's 'Death Panel'" and have bureaucrats decide if they live or die.

If, as a liberal, you were disgusted when Republicans resorted to such toxic arguments then, you should be horrified to hear your fellow liberals resort to them now. Conversely, if you're a mainstream conservative sickened at the way Democrats now play the "death" card, did you have the same objection when the GOP was doing so during the Obama years?

There were legitimate arguments to be made for and against enacting Obamacare; there are legitimate arguments to be made for and against replacing it. There are decent ways to argue that a given bill may have grave unintended consequences.

But it is wholly illegitimate and indecent to portray those who disagree with your view as eager champions of death and suffering. It is vile beyond words to avidly wish for them to be "lined up and shot" or to "be tortured" by the death of loved ones. Such fury should be deployed against the real monsters who threaten us — not against fellow Americans guilty of only a different political outlook. If we have forgotten how to tell the difference, we are in bigger trouble than we know.



Blonde in the Belly of the Beast

I like political arguments to be in writing so I rarely put up political videos.  But the young woman below is a "must" of an exception.  Just a sampling of her videos below.  Immediately below, she sees two of the layers of Leftism. I divide her group A into the purely emotional/feel good ones, and the image/status focused ones.

But she is a bit brutal. Considering what she suggests as a solution I am surprised this video of hers below has been allowed to remain on youtube.

She makes a point below that few will make. Many people side with  those who will do them most harm. Most lefties are basically cowards who lack individual initiative and principles. Therefore they will side with those who will ultimately do them most harm, not with those who are right, or who are good, or by those who would protect them and are their friends.

She has a website here with much more.  Incidentally, the "Belly of the Beast" appears to be Seattle.


ABC Cancels hate-filled ‘Real O’Neals’

The show was bigoted, vile and unfunny. The characters were one-dimensional, the gags were as obvious as they were offensive, and the entire thing never rose above predictable anti-Catholic, pro-gay agitprop. The ratings were bad and even the critics didn’t care for it. So of course ABC went ahead with development and then gave The Real O’Neals a second season.

But there won’t be a third. According to Deadline Hollywood, “ABC has canceled sophomore [sophomoric is more like it] comedy The Real O’Neals. The family comedy showed enough promise in its midseason launch last spring to get a second season but has delivered disappointing ratings in its second year.”

Supposedly based loosely on the youth of noted anti-bullying bully, militant gay activist, bigot and sex columnist Dan Savage, The Real O’Neals centered on an Irish Catholic family and their gay teenage son. Far from being a gentle send-up, the sitcom was as nasty and contemptuous of traditional family life and religion as Savage is himself. In the first episode MRC counted 93 separate visual or verbal reminders that the show targeted Catholics, including a statue of the Blessed Virgin on the toilet back to remind the O’Neal boys to “put the seat down.”

The characters were mired in hypocrisy and thoughtless, superstitious piety. The parents were splitting up, the young teen daughter stole from the poor box and the parish priest cried poverty but drove a Lexus. Episodes discussed gay porn, chronic masturbation, underage boys using gay dating apps to pick up older men, a wedding-like divorce ceremony, God being a woman and endless derision for the Church, it’s teachings and its people.

After ABC ordered the pilot for The Real O’Neals in 2015, MRC organized a protest, along with other conservative and religious organizations. The show lost at least one sponsor during its brief run thanks to the efforts of The Catholic League. But the show collapsed under the weight of its own hatred.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH,  POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


Monday, May 15, 2017

Has Judas been misunderstood?

Apologies if that heading seems flippant but it does ask a serious question. It asks a question that just about no-one normally asks:  What was Judas's motivation?  It is normally assumed that it was greed for the famous 30 pieces of silver.  But if Judas was as callous as that, why did he commit suicide when he saw Jesus executed?  And what are we to make of it that Jesus predicted to him what he would do?

No-one at this distance can get into his mind but there is one explanation for his behaviour that does make considerable sense.  Could it be that he was overawed by the miraculous powers Jesus had displayed and wanted Jesus to use those powers on a large scale -- perhaps even to drive the Romans out?  Did he think Jesus only needed a small push to get him to do that?

And when Jesus predicted to him what he would do, did he take that as a sign that Jesus actually WANTED him to do that? And was he heartbroken at the actual outcome of his actions?  Was his suicide born out of a realization that he had got it tragically wrong?

Broadly, that explanation seems to explain what actually happened. It fits better than actions motivated by mere greed.

A Christian correspondent of mine has attempted to go even deeper into the matter, however, so I reproduce below his thoughts as well:


I don’t think Jesus so much prophesied that Judas would betray him as told Judas to betray him.

I think Judas was spiritually immature, a material man, a little too hooked on the material and emotional pleasures of life. He didn’t understand Jesus’s teachings in a spiritual/heart/soul sense.

He believed Jesus should be some sort of worldly king or leader.  Judas had seen or heard of Jesus perform many miracles, healing people, walking on water, disappearing from the midst of a crowd trying to kill him, killing the fig tree by pointing at it.

Judas was enraptured by Jesus’s power and presence. He thought something like, “Just let them try to take my master, and see what happens. My master will cast them aside and destroy them like he did the fig tree.”

Jesus knew that Judas would betray him, but not betray him out of spite, but out of immature love, like the childish love a little boy has for his father, thinking his father is the strongest man in the world and can beat up any other man.

Judas not only thought that Jesus would defeat any attempt to capture him, but he also thought that an attempt to capture him would force Jesus to demonstrate his powers upon the authorities, and thus give Jesus the recognition Judas believed he deserved. Then Jesus would be elevated to some sort of leader, as Judas believed he should be.

Jesus knew that Judas thought like that.

And he let Judas go and betray him, even told him when to go.
Not that Jesus encouraged him, but knew that he could not be stopped from doing it because of his immature love for Jesus.

And Jesus knew betrayal would serve his cause, and he also knew the awful suffering that would come back upon poor Judas afterwards when we would realise what he had done.

And that came true. When Judas saw Jesus powerless and being tortured to death, Judas could not bear it, he realised his awful error and went and hanged himself.

He was not a betrayer so much as an immature man with a childlike love.

The lesson is that betrayal need not be consciously treacherous, it can be merely immature.


While the Left Ignores Voter Fraud, More Evidence Mounts to Prove Them Wrong

The 2016 elections have passed, but courts still have plenty of work to do sorting out cases of voter fraud throughout the country.

Convictions have continued to roll in this spring, and The Heritage Foundation’s voter fraud database is growing longer by the day.

This week, we are adding 19 convictions, including cases from Texas, Colorado, and Illinois. These are just the latest convictions. Yet despite the overwhelming evidence, the left prefers to bury its head in the sand and refuses to acknowledge the reality of Voter fraud.

Take one example from Kansas. When Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach claimed his first conviction in a voter fraud case against a non-U.S. citizen, opponents of the conviction had no interest in dealing with the facts.

Instead, some groups on the left—like the liberal news site Think Progress—accused Kobach of “voter suppression.” Another Salon article completely dismissed Kobach without addressing the evidence he found, saying, “Someday he’ll have evidence of a problem that doesn’t exist.”

In many states, voter registration requires proof of citizenship. The left calls such policies anti-American. But is that really such a radical idea, that voters in a U.S. election would have to be U.S. citizens?

If liberals want evidence, then Heritage has it. To date, we have documented 773 confirmed criminal convictions in 492 voter fraud cases spanning 44 states.

Here are a few of the newest entries to the database:

Toni Lee Newbill, of Colorado, pleaded guilty to voting twice for her deceased father, once in the 2013 general election and again in the Republican Primary of 2016. Newbill was sentenced to 18 months of unsupervised probation, 30 hours of community service, and was ordered to pay a $500 fine and additional court fees.

Noe Olvera, of Texas, pleaded guilty to a federal bribery charge. Olvera, a postman, admitted to taking a $1,000 bribe from a paid campaign worker in exchange for a list of the names and addresses of mail-in ballot recipients on his postal route.

After a two-year investigation into local voting fraud, hidden camera footage surfaced revealing a uniformed and on-the-job Olvera “negotiating an exchange of money for mail-in voter lists.” Olvera is scheduled to be sentenced on May 25.

Steveland Kidd, of Illinois, pleaded guilty to two counts of absentee ballot abuse during a municipal election in April 2013. Kidd took possession of, and delivered, an absentee ballot to election authorities despite being legally barred from doing so.
The crime is a Class 3 felony. Kidd was sentenced to 12 days in the St. Clair County Jail and is now barred from engaging in campaign-related activities or electioneering.

Brian McDouglar, a resident of Cahokia, Illinois, was sentenced to two years in prison on charges of falsifying or tampering with an absentee ballot—a class 3 felony. McDouglar illegally took an absentee ballot from a voter he was not related to, and then placed it in the mail.

Clearly, absentee voting remains particularly vulnerable to fraud.

Simply put, in most states there are few measures in place to sufficiently verify the identity of those casting absentee ballots. Signatures can be forged—a problem that can be addressed by requiring the voter to include a photocopied valid ID along with the absentee ballot.

But more robust identification requirements would only solve part of the problem. They cannot defend against the pernicious targeting of absentee voters by pressuring, coercing, or “assisting” them in filling out their ballots in order to assure that particular candidates or causes prevail.

So long as states continue to allow the names of deceased voters and residents who have moved away to remain on their voter rolls, they are leaving the door wide open to fraudsters who are willing to take advantage of the system by voting in their names.

The Heritage Foundation published “Does Your Vote Count?,” a guide to help voters and policymakers understand the issue of election fraud. That report provides policy recommendations that states should adopt to help thwart illegal activity and ensure that the election process remains free and fair for all.

Procedures that can be implemented include requiring a photographic, government-issued ID and proof of citizenship to register to vote. In addition, participating in an interstate voter registration crosscheck program will help guarantee that people are not voting twice.

Secretaries of state should verify voter registration data with other state and federal agencies, such as the state Department of Motor Vehicles and the Social Security Administration. Such measures will offer a barrier of protection not only to eligible voters, but also to the electoral process in general.

A single fraudulent vote does more than just cancel out the vote of another American. It puts a stain on the results of the entire election.

If voters are discouraged to participate in what they perceive as a tainted process, it only empowers those who would seek to steal elections.

Instead of vilifying those who fulfill their duties to protect the electoral process, the left should embrace the facts. Voter fraud is real, and we must take seriously the task of securing the integrity of our elections.



David Horowitz: 'Democrats Are Blinded By Their Hate'

Author, historian, and activist David Horowiz, a red diaper baby who turned right in the late 1970s, criticized the Democratic Party for practicing "identity politics," which he said is "racist and anti-American" and fueld by hatred.

Identity politics focuses on groups instead of individuals and principles. For instance, assuming that all women support abortion and catering to that view, or assuming that all gays back transgender bathrooms and catering to that notion is a form of identity politics -- lumping people into groups by race, gender, ethnicity, economic status, etc., and then crafting public policies that appeal to these groups.

During a May 5 interview on the Sam Malone Show, AM 1070 in Houston, Texas, Horowitz, who runs the David Horowitz Freedom Center, said, “The Democrats are blinded by their hate. It’s a party of hate. That’s all it runs on – hate and character assassination. And they lie about everything.”

Host Sam Malone then commented, “I remember when Trump was appointing people to the cabinet. Everyone was a racist, everyone was an anti-Semite, everyone was a homophobe, everyone was horrible. They had not one nice thing to say about one appointee.”

Horowitz replied, “That’s because the Democratic Party is driven by identity politics, which is racist and anti-American. They use this phrase ‘people of color.’ It’s not even English. We don’t say [garbled] of color, do we?"

"It’s an ideological term to demonize white people," said Horowitz, author of Progressive Racism.  The whole world is people of color: Maharajas in India, Islamic beheaders in Syria and Iraq. They’re all people of color."

"The only people who are not people of color, the oppressors, are white people," said Horowitz.  "It is a racist party, the Democratic Party, and America has finally gotten fed up with it.”



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH,  POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated),  a Coral reef compendium and an IQ compendium. (Both updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten. I also put up occasional updates on my Personal blog and each day I gather together my most substantial current writings on THE PSYCHOLOGIST.

Email me  here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here (Academic) or  here (Pictorial) or  here  (Personal)


Sunday, May 14, 2017

President two scoops

I have been having a great old chuckle about Mr Trump's latest appearance in the news. He put on a dinner for some "Time" magazine journalists but gave them lesser dinners than his own.  He had two scoops of ice-cream and a diet Coke whereas the journalists got only one scoop of ice-cream and only water to drink.

This utter triviality has attracted great attention, being reported even in Australian newspapers.  And what it says about Mr Trump has also generated a lot of opinion, with the most frequent opinion being that it shows Mr Trump as childish.  But that overlooks the obvious.

Leftists rarely listen to conservatives so tend to have strange and derogatory ideas about what makes conservatives tick. And on this occasion they have revealed that they don't even know the basics:  Conservatives DON'T believe in equality.  They think there never has been any equality and never will be and that seeking it is striving after wind.  So Mr Trump saw no problem in giving unequal serves of food and drink. It's as simple as that.

Because of the torrents of abuse that Leftists hurl at anyone they disagree with, it has become normal for conservatives to give lip service to Leftist beliefs.  It has become good manners not to emphasize inequality.  So any other President would have given equal serves of food and drink to both himself and his guests -- purely as a courtesy.  But Mr Trump is not any other President.  He is his own man and rewrites the rules all the time -- to the rage of Leftist journalists.  We have been living in a Leftist-dominated consensus about many things and Mr Trump has shone a light on that by violating the consensus almost daily. He has done a great service to us all by that -- JR


Trump Defiles the Sanctity of Government, and It Drives the Center-Left Mad

Libertarian Jeffrey A. Tucker is pretty right in the excerpt below but he traces the idea of the State as a be-all and end-all only as far back as Von Mises. In truth it goes all the way back to G.W.F. Hegel, the founding philosopher of Leftism. Hegel mocked individual liberty as mere "caprice". The same concept of the state had a notable exponent in Fascist leader Benito Mussolini, famous for preaching: "Tutto nello Stato, niente al di fuori dello Stato, nulla contro lo Stato" (Everything in the State, nothing outside the State, nothing against the State)

This frenzy even has a name: Trump Derangement Syndrome.

Has the center-left ever been more apoplectic about a presidency? It can’t have been this nuts even during the Nixon presidency. Every day, their publications fill up with articles that are breathless to the point of hysteria about the disgrace that the Trump administration is bringing to the affairs of government. His incessant tweeting, his violations of protocol, his attacks on the press, and even the very existence of this administration has them in permanent meltdown.

Their complaints are contradictory. He is terrible because he is doing terrible things! He is terrible because he is not really doing anything! This presidency is destroying the world! This presidency is all sound and fury and nothing else!

The Why

It finally struck me why. For this crowd, all their hopes and dreams are bound up with particular political processes, outcomes, and institutions. The state is their favorite tool for all the good they aspire to do in this world. It must be protected, guarded, defended, celebrated. The illusion that the government is not a taker but a giver and the source of all good things must be maintained. The gloss of the democratic process must be constantly refurbished so that the essential sanctity of the public sector can be constantly cited as the highest calling.

The center-left has at least one hundred years of work and resources invested in the state’s health, well being, reputation, and exalted moral status. Nothing must be allowed to threaten it or take it down a peg or two. Any failures must be deemed as temporary setbacks. The slightest sign of some success must be trumpeted constantly. The population must be subjected to unrelenting homilies on the essential holiness of the public sector.

Their education told them this. Their degrees and ruling-class pedigree were hard earned. This is what has inspired them. They believe so strongly that they can make the world a better place through the managerial state that it has become their religion. It’s their very core!

Above all else, the president is supposed to represent. His duty is to reflect and broadcast this sensibility.

This View Has a Name

Writing in 1944, Ludwig von Mises wrote that the debate over the future of freedom is not only about beating back socialism, communism, fascism, interventionism, and so on. There is broader discussion to be had. The core problem is the ideology of statism, a word he took from the French term etatism. It identified a view that the state should always and in everything be the central power, organizing principle, and spiritual core of any society. It must be the final judge, the final arbiter, the center of our loyalties, the one indispensable institution because it alone is deserving of our highest devotion and ideal. It must be forever built, larger and larger, taking on ever more responsibility and taking ever more money and power from the rest of us.

The president is supposed to at least pretend to be the high priest of the statist religion. That's his job, according to this outlook.

Everything seemed to being going so well under the Obama administration, which was so earnest, so decorous, so civil. He was funny, smart, respectful of process, and sincere in his pronouncements. He ran on hope and change but governed as the person who kept hope for a new freedom and any radical change at bay.

Change in the Matrix

Trump has profoundly disturbed the balance. He overthrew the respective establishments of two parties, tore right into the legitimacy of the national press, humiliated every expert who predicted his demise, and is now stumbling around Washington like a bum in a jewelry store. He is not actually cutting back on the size of the state; he is doing something even more terrifying from the center-left point of view: he is ruining the mystery of the state, and thereby discrediting their holy institutions.

After the election, I wrote that this might be our 1989 [When the Soviets imploded]. What I meant is that major aspects of what we always thought would be true were suddenly not true any more. New possibilities have opened up. An older establishment has been discredited if not overthrown. What comes next is another matter.

Trump is not a liberator in any sense. His temperament suggests the opposite. It was he who famously said in the campaign: “The nation-state remains the true foundation for happiness and harmony.” Moreover, and in many ways, the deep state has regrouped and bitten back to avoid losing power and influence in Washington.

Even so, he is everything that the center-left fears most, a person who works, despite himself, to discredit the thing they love the most. He has demoralized them beyond consoling. Now we are seeing talk of impeachment. This seems to be some people’s last hope for saving the old faith.


But the truth is that, with or without Trump’s reign of chaos, the 20th-century project of enlightened and comprehensive statism is not sustainable for the long run. The welfare programs are drying up and their plans have constantly proven unviable and unworkable. We live in a world in which the miracles of the private commercial sector are all around us, while the failures of statism are everywhere present as well.

The old world of command and control just can’t last, not for the long run. Perhaps this is the role that Trump is inadvertently playing in this great drama of history. And this is precisely why his existence is driving the partisans of old-fashioned government planning to psychotropic drugs to control their anger and panic.

If you doubt it, I invite you to read the opinion columns of the mainstream press, tomorrow, the next day, the next day, the next day….



What Do Leftists Celebrate?

By Walter E. Williams

May Day celebrations were held all across the fruited plain, with leftist radicals and unionists worshipping the ideals of communism. Communism is an ideology calling for government control over our lives. It was created by Karl Marx, who — along with his collaborator, Friedrich Engels — wrote a pamphlet called "Manifesto of the Communist Party." In 1867, Marx wrote the first volume of "Das Kapital." The second and third volumes were published posthumously, edited by Engels. Few people who call themselves Marxists have ever even bothered to read "Das Kapital." If one did read it, he would see that people who call themselves Marxists have little in common with Marx.

For those who see Marx as their hero, there are a few historical tidbits they might find interesting. Nathaniel Weyl, himself a former communist, dug them up for his 1979 book, "Karl Marx: Racist." For example, Marx didn't think much of Mexicans. When the United States annexed California after the Mexican War, Marx sarcastically asked, "Is it a misfortune that magnificent California was seized from the lazy Mexicans who did not know what to do with it?" Engels shared Marx's contempt for Mexicans, explaining: "In America we have witnessed the conquest of Mexico and have rejoiced at it. It is to the interest of its own development that Mexico will be placed under the tutelage of the United States."

Marx had a racial vision that might be interesting to his modern-day black supporters. In a letter to Engels, in reference to his socialist political competitor Ferdinand Lassalle, Marx wrote: "It is now completely clear to me that he, as is proved by his cranial formation and his hair, descends from the Negroes who had joined Moses' exodus from Egypt, assuming that his mother or grandmother on the paternal side had not interbred with a nigger. Now this union of Judaism and Germanism with a basic Negro substance must produce a peculiar product. The obtrusiveness of the fellow is also nigger-like." Engels shared Marx's racial philosophy. In 1887, Paul Lafargue, who was Marx's son-in-law, was a candidate for a council seat in a Paris district that contained a zoo. Engels claimed that Lafargue had "one-eighth or one-twelfth nigger blood." In a letter to Lafargue's wife, Engels wrote, "Being in his quality as a nigger, a degree nearer to the rest of the animal kingdom than the rest of us, he is undoubtedly the most appropriate representative of that district."

Marx was also an anti-Semite, as seen in his essay titled "On the Jewish Question," which was published in 1844. Marx asked: "What is the worldly religion of the Jew? Huckstering. What is his worldly God? Money. ... Money is the jealous god of Israel, in face of which no other god may exist. Money degrades all the gods of man — and turns them into commodities. ... The bill of exchange is the real god of the Jew. His god is only an illusory bill of exchange. ... The chimerical nationality of the Jew is the nationality of the merchant, of the man of money in general."

Despite the fact that in the 20th century alone communism was responsible for more than 100 million murders, much of the support for communism and socialism is among intellectuals. The reason they do not condemn the barbarism of communism is understandable. Dr. Richard Pipes explains: "Intellectuals, by the very nature of their professions, grant enormous attention to words and ideas. And they are attracted by socialist ideas. They find that the ideas of communism are praiseworthy and attractive; that, to them, is more important than the practice of communism. Now, Nazi ideals, on the other hand, were pure barbarism; nothing could be said in favor of them." That means leftists around the world will continue to celebrate the ideas of communism.



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