Monday, July 22, 2019

The psychology of Trump hate

The Left routinely pour out anger, hated and contempt towards Republican Presidents. The only near-exception was Ronald Reagan.  He was very hard to hate so they mostly settled on contempt for him.  He actually got all his transformative policies through a Democrat Congress!

And a sentimental Christian gentleman -- George Bush II -- was excoriated as a new Hitler!

But Trump has caused the hate to rise to a new level.  The Left have exploded with hate during his Presidency. Even the tiniest thing Trump says or does is fodder for derogatory mention. The thing that symbolizes the Leftist attitude towards Trump for me is the icecream "affair".  At a small White House dinner for some journalists, Trump asked for an extra scoop of icecream with his dessert.  The media went wild!  How contemptible to ask for an extra scoop of icecream!  Who does he think he is?  Oliver Twist or something?  The triviality of it is mind-blowing.

Much wisdom has been written about Trump hatred but I want to take an analysis of it down to the psychological level. I want to relate it to the basics of the Left-Right polarity. And at its psychological fons et origo the Left Right polarity is very simple.  Conservatives are the contented people and Leftists are the discontented people. Conservatives don't think the world is perfect but they can happily live with it. For Leftists, on the other hand, departures from the ideal burn them up.  So how has Trump affected that?

When you are discontented with something you tend to be angry about it and want to change it. So we have the unending stream of mostly addled Leftist proposals for "reform". What the proposals are varies almost from day to day but there is always that simmering discontent motivating them. The problems at the Southern border, for instance, went from non-existent to a humanitarian disaster almost overnight.

The sad thing is that the Left are mostly up against what philosopher Gottfried Wilhelm Leibnitz pointed out a couple of hundred years ago:  Maybe we live in the best of all possible worlds.  Leibnitz didn't mean that seriously.  He set it as a question that should be asked before we change something. The point being that some bad things are necessary to some good things and vice versa.

Current politics have a rather clear example of that.  It would be good and nice and kind if we could abolish America's borders -- as the Left propose -- and thus give all the poor of Latin America access to a better lifestyle.  How good, kind and noble the Left are to propose such a beneficial change!  The bad thing is that we cannot do that and must have defended borders if America is not to be flooded by people with the attitudes, values  and customs that have made their own countries cesspits of violence and corruption.  America already has plenty of troublesome people within its borders.  The last thing it needs is more of them. Opening the borders (good) would lead to a widespread collapse in civility (bad)

So the Left are usually up against it.  The arrangements that have stood the test of time are pretty much the best we can do.  They are an existing balance that maximizes the good without falling too far into the bad.  So any change will usually disrupt that and cause "unforeseen" bad side effects.

The bad effects are not however really "unforeseen.  Conservatives foresee them regularly and warn Leftists about them.  But the Left are so obsessed with the bad things that they see that they close their ears to any information that might distract them from the "good" that they want to do.  So we have things like the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) that made health insurance UNaffordable for many.  Conservatives certainly warned vigorously against it before its enactment and it got not one vote from the Right side of the house.

So the Left are constantly in a state of frustration. The "good" that they try to do almost always rebounds against them and causes them to become unpopular instead of popular -- and loses them votes. Obamacare undoubtedly helped put Trump in office.  Would anybody suddenly hit with $10,000 deductibles vote Democrat?

But the Left have gradually got some of their way over the years,  despite the generally impoverishing effect of their policies. They have, for instance, got America to bow down before the false God of global warming despite the huge and futile cost of windmills, solar panels etc.  Had all that money been spent on repairing and upgrading America's roads, bridges and highways, everybody would have been much better off.

And the Obama/Clinton regime gave them hope of a lot of progress towards their imagined ideal world.  Americans were regulated within an inch of their lives.  The stage was set for the emergence of a new "sustainable" Eden.  Obama had generated much ecstasy and Clinton was clearly committed to continue the march towards that new but elusive Eden where we would all be ants in a great Leftist anthill.  From Hegel on that has been the Leftist vision.

But what they were up against was the wish of many Americans not to be antlike robots obeying every addled command from on high.  The ever-changing enthusiasms of the Left were far from universally shared.  And when Leftists see "racism" under every bed they certainly depart from how most Americans see things.

One thing that has changed little over the years is the Leftist  obsession with race.  Before WWII, they were for the white race, now they are against the white race but they remain racists.  With "affirmative action" and "diversity" it is all about race for them.  Almost comically, however, they deny being racists and constantly accuse everybody else of being racists. They explain their race consciousness as an attempt to do good so, in their simplistic way, any other thinking about racial differences is bad.

And they extend their intolerance of any groupthink other than their own to all sorts of groupthink by others.  In particular they are very wary of patriotism and the idea that America is particularly admirable or exceptional.

Obama put it politely when he said during an April 2009 press conference: “I believe in American exceptionalism, just as I suspect that the Brits believe in British exceptionalism and the Greeks believe in Greek exceptionalism”.  Coming from an American President that is remarkable. Most Americans love their country or are at least proud of it and expect to hear that echoed in the words of their President.  Obama could on occasions bring himself to praise American ideals but praise for America as such was in short supply.

The above picture was from a 2007 political rally where the national anthem was being played. An ABC News video showed that Senator Obama did not salute at any time during the anthem and that everybody else on the platform did.  His ignoring of the anthem was widely criticized so he learned from that and was  more careful when he became President.  But it is clear that his heart was just not in it.

Obama was noted for his politeness but most Leftists are not polite at all about any praise for America.  They call it "racism".  Leftist Howard Zinn's widely used textbook A People's History of the United States is a catalog of America's failings, real, exaggerated and imagined. As America is a famously patriotic country, Leftists do at election times make some pretence of patriotism but the frequency with which they prescribe Zinn's textbook for the schools they control shows what they really think.

It is clear enough why anybody would be careful about racism.  It is "good" to avoid excesses such as Hitler's  -- but extending "racism" to include all forms of group consciousness is egregious.

So by the time of the election that brought Trump to power, many Americans had grown very tired of being lectured to and restricted by the Left.  What to the Left were the first steps towards a new Eden were to many Americans an attempt to make them into something other than what they naturally were -- and they were in a mood to rebel against it.  And in particular they disliked the constant parade of accusations and condemnations about how "deplorable" America and Americans were.

So the election of Trump was to his followers a return to normal -- a return to how they naturally felt and thought.  They simply threw off the ever-tightening Leftist straitjacket that was trying to force them to be something that they were not.  And because of their natural patriotic feelings they LOVED the man who liberated them to express that loudly and proudly again.

So now we can see why the Left hate Trump beyond all bounds. All their attempts to right the wrongs of the world as they see them have always failed. The Soviet attempt took a painfully long time to fail but it too in the end failed.  But through their "long march" through American institutions it had begun to look as if  they might now be building a lasting approach to a new Eden.  And the Obama presidency seemed to be a culmination of that --bringing a clear victory to them at last.  After lifetimes of failures they finally seemed to be getting there. Their dreams were on the brink of being realized.

Then Donald Trump took it all away.  He destroyed their last great hope of permanent "reform". He liberated people to be what they wanted to be rather than what the Left wanted them to be.  And from the moment he became the Republican candidate his vigorous patriotism signalled that.  He was clearly from the world that Leftists deplored. And almost as soon as he came to power he did the unthinkable by removing America's obeisance to global warming -- by withdrawing from the Paris "treaty".  The "treaty" was mostly just an empty gesture but Trump took even that away.

Thanks to the traitorous John McCain, Trump did not manage to get  Obamacare abolished but he broke its backbone by getting the mandatory levy abolished. Obamacare ended up as no triumph anyway, as we see from the way that most of the current crop of Democrat presidential candidates are pushing "Medicare for all".  So there is nothing left for the Left.  What should have been their great triumph lies as a shattered ruin at their feet.

So if someone had destroyed all your dreams just when your dreams seemed likely to be realized, would you not hate with a passion the man who snatched those dreams away?  The Left are great haters so after what he took away from them, they hate Trump with all their  being. Nothing that he does is forgiveable -- JR.


Senator: ‘I Stand with’ Trump; ‘Montanans Are Sick and Tired of Listening to…Radical Democrats Trash Our Country’

The citizens of his state are “sick and tired” of hearing Democrats attack America and its founding principles, Republican Montana Senator Steve Daines declared Monday.

On Monday, Sen. Daines took to Twitter to voice his support of President Donald Trump:

“Montanans are sick and tired of listening to anti-American, anti-Semite, radical Democrats trash our country and our ideals. This is America. We’re the greatest country in the world.

“I stand with @realdonaldtrump”

On Sunday, Trump sparked controversy when he attacked “’Progressive’ Democrat Congresswomen” for espousing policies “from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe, the worst, most corrupt and inept anywhere in the world.”



Jesse Watters: Dems Call Trump ‘A Nazi Rapist,’ But Cry Their Eyes Out When He Says, ‘Go Home’

Democrats complaining about President Donald Trump’s tweets can dish it out, but they can’t take it, Fox News’ “The Five” Co-host Jesse Watters said Monday.

“When did ‘Love it or leave it’ become racist?” Watters asked, dismissing Trump’s Sunday tweet that progressive Democrat congresswomen who hate America should move to the socialist countries they so admire. Trump even invited them to return to the U.S. once they’ve proven their policies work, Watters noted:

“These were not racist [comments]. This about patriotism. When did ‘Love it or leave it’ become racist?

“Not only leave it, but ‘Hey, come back and help us fix our problems.’ This country is so sensitive now. We are not talking about death, famine, drought, or anything. We are talking about a word, a tweet. We’re not even talking about an action and people are crying their eyes out about this.”

Watters went on to say that Democrats have said many worse things about Trump than he has said about them – and, yet, freak out over his words in order to avoid having a debate on real issues:

“They have said so many worse things about this president: ‘He is a Nazi rapist who deserves to be in prison for the rest of his life.’

“He says, ‘Go home’ and they say, ‘Oh, my God, this is the biggest scandal since Watergate.’”

“These people are so bereft of actual ideas they create this thing because they’ve deceived the rest of the country as to actually what he said. He says this to everybody - of all stripes and of all genders, of all parties: Romney, Rosie, Don Lemon, Maxine, McCabe.

“Everyone gets it a little bit below the belt and every time he does it everyone acts shocked like we haven’t been watching this for three years, and instead of fighting back on the substance, they cry and they pout and they look soft and they look weak.”



Trump moves to lessen the pain of a tax beloved by the Left: capital gains taxes

Australia abolished its capital gains tax long ago

It’s official. President Trump wants to index capital gains taxes for inflation. This would be a big stimulus boost for the U.S. economy immediately and over time and could get us back to 3 percent to 4 percent growth by liberating potentially hundreds of billions of dollars for new capital investment. My sources tell me that the president has told his White House team that if he can get his legal counsel to give him a ruling that he has the right to make this change administratively, he will do exactly that.

I’m not a lawyer, so I won’t weigh in on whether the White House has the authority to define what constitutes a capital “gain” on a stock or a property. Traditionally, a gain has been defined as the difference between the price that an asset has been bought at and the price it is sold at. The issue is whether these gains should be adjusted for the inflation rate over the time period the asset was owned. In other words, should the gain be defined as the change in the cost of living over the period.

If you bought a stock 10 years ago for $1,000 and over that time the inflation rate was, say 20 percent, if you sold it for $1,200 is that $200 a genuine gain to the shareholder?

In an ideal world, Congress would define a gain over for an asset held over a long period of time as taking into account inflation. This would reward risk taking and capital investment by reducing the “real” capital gains tax. It would also induce more shareholders to sell stocks in old assets and companies like Macy’s and buy into shares of new-age companies that will be the wealth and job creators of the future. I suspect most Americans would think that would be a fair treatment.

By the way, Congress wants to give itself a cost-of-living raise each year, a measure supported by such leading liberals as Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Why not a similar deal for those 100 million Americans or so who own stocks?

Even Democratic Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer of New York has in the past spoken out in favor of killing this inflation penalty. He once said on the House floor “If we really want to increase growth, there are proposals that we can do. I would be for indexing all capital gains and savings and borrowing.” As leader of the new left-wing Democratic Party, he is now against this after he was for it.

Stock ownership has been treated roughly in the tax code over the past decade. Under President George W. Bush, the tax was lowered to 15 percent. But under President Obama, the rate rose almost 60 percent, to 23.8 percent — thanks in part to an Obamacare tax increase. This rate is higher than even at the end of Clinton era.

It is also one of the few tax rates Mr. Trump has failed to cut to promote a stronger economy. A run at reducing the Obamacare capital gains penalty was killed in the Senate because of class warfare arguments.

The left says that investors are not very sensitive to the capital gains tax rate. Len Burman, an economist at the Brookings Institution, says that the rate of tax has not had much impact on the buying and selling of stocks. But the evidence of the last 40 years tends to refute that.

After the capital gains tax increase in 1986 from 20 percent to 28 percent, capital gains revenues actually fell from $44 billion a year to $27 billion a year by 1991 because fewer people sold stock at the higher tax rate. After Bill Clinton cut the capital gains tax back down to 20 percent again, capital gains revenues surged from $54 billion in 1996 to $99 billion in 1999. The rich actually paid more tax with the lower rates.

No one knows for sure how much unrealized capital gains that would be sold if indexing were adopted as federal tax policy. In the short term, this could mean hundreds of billions of dollars of sales of stock and then tens of billions of dollars of tax revenues collected by the government.

Without indexing, some of this revenue would never be collected because shareholders often hold onto stock until death and pass it on to their heirs tax free. Some of the stocks would be put in charitable foundations where tax on the gains is never paid. So the liberal charge that this policy would be a tax give-away to the rich is highly exaggerated.

History also shows that the capital gains tax — all other things equal — is inversely related to venture capital funding for start-up firms. A low capital gains tax attracts dollars to higher-risk investments. What’s wrong with a nice boost for the women and men who start new companies in America?

The lawyers at the Treasury Department and the Office of Legal Counsel will determine whether indexing can and should be done with a stroke of the pen by President Trump. But as an economic matter, this tax change would be a home run crashing off the centerfield score board.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCHPOLITICAL 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.

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