Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Conservatives Have Conservatives To Blame For GOP State Of Affairs

Guess what fellow conservatives?
There is a huge problem in our ranks and we have ourselves to blame.
Before ye call me a sellout, RINO, etc., etc., read on.
A case in point and what I will concentrate on is the Republican leadership in congress. 
Recently former Speaker of the House, John Boehner, all but handed conservatives a gift by giving up and leaving congress. Mind you, Mr. Boehner was not some hippy, left-winger. He was reliably conservative while moving up the leadership ladder. Something happened when Mr. Boehner attained the pinnacle of house leadership, the speaker's office. Mr. Boehner came in as House minority leader and acted as such when he became the speaker. It appeared that Mr. Boehner was more interested in cutting the deals no matter what rather than taking stands against the overreach of the executive branch. Sure, we are in divided government and at some level, deals will be cut. Conservatives simply wanted floor votes on a myriad of proposals that did not have a chance of even getting out of the then Democrat senate. But Mr. Boehner did nothing when the Republicans took control of the senate this year. 
As I noted yesterday, the GOP could simply have taken a page from the Democrat playbook of 1974-76 and sent the whole left-wing agenda to an impotent President Ford. He vetoed 66 pieces of legislation and was only overridden on 12. That's an over .800 winning percentage. Maybe it will end up the same but what the Republican base wants to see is less deal making and some back-bone. Count me in that group. 
But when Mr. Boehner quit, where was the great conservative to win over the disparate forces of the House of Representatives GOP caucus? 
NO ONE, but NO ONE wanted the job. The current Speaker, Rep. Paul Ryan, literally had to be dragged into the job. Where was Daniel Webster? Where was anyone in the Freedom Caucus? Huh? 
I'll tell you where they were. 
Hoping that they would not have to try for a job that saw a pretty conservative fellow, Mr. Boehner, run out on the rail.
I fear that some firebrand conservatives realize that because deals have to be done, some disgusting, some just unpalatable, they do not want their fingerprints on it. Really, that is what we have to conclude.
You know who cut some lousy deals with a worse political landscape but turned out to be a damn good president?
Ronald Wilson Reagan.
So the dude literally dragged into the speaker's chair, Mr Ryan, cut a lousy budget deal that as he said the cake was already baked.
He is right. 
What was he supposed to do? Rip it up and start over? Maybe. Give conservatives more of a place at the table? Well, duh! 
By getting this out of the way, next year is going to be different. Conservatives will have a place and Mr. Ryan will make much more of a conservative effort to govern with the most left-wing president in our lifetimes. 
We conservatives expect a lot and were promised a lot over the past couple of election cycles. at a real level, we have been hosed. But we also are so damn tribal, we can't get a good, unifying governing majority. 
I hope my fellow conservatives think about all of this and don't think blowing up the place will make for a winning coalition. 

Monday, December 21, 2015

The Trump Train Rolls Along To The Cliff

I still do not get it, the Trump Train that is.
It seems that the Donald's support only grows and it is whenever he opens his illogical mouth and shoots off some absurdity.
Is it the fault of the GOP establishment? The Democrats? The Dear Leader, President Obama, himself?
It's all of the above I'm afraid.
The GOP establishment seems more interested in cutting deals, such as the latest budget deal in congress, than ever confronting the Democrats and their titular leader, the president of the United States. Votes should have been had on repealing Obamacare as an example. Yes, the Democrats would fight in the senate and try the filibuster. So what? The GOP leader, Ol' Mitch McConnell, could drop a nuke on the filibuster and make the Dear Leader, President Obama, veto it.
The Dems did this to Gerald Ford after he became president in 1974 and they swept to super-majorities in both houses in the midterm elections that year. The impotent successor to Richard M. Nixon in less than two years as president vetoed a total of 66 bills. Only 12 vetoes were overridden by congress and thus became law. And I will note that a Democrat, one Jimmah Carter, was elected president in 1976.
My point?
It can be done and not hurt in the long run. It inspires a base that is needed to turn out the vote in 2016 no matter who the candidate is. It shows a party that believes in what it runs on.
I get all of that.
I would like to remind my friends who are on that Trump Train thinking that the Donald walks on water and says nothing wrong, there is nothing wrong with having a little political experience when running for office.
Despite the comparisons to one Ronald Wilson Reagan, by the time he made his serious campaign for the presidency in 1976, he had served two successful terms as governor of California, and was able to enact welfare reform before it was cool. He had a record. And he had a lot of serious people supporting the failed '76 effort. Many of those would be influential in his two successful terms as president.
I'll say it.
Donald J. Trump can not and could not shine Ronald Reagan's shoes on a  good day.
Yeah, go ahead and show a picture of Mr. Reagan shaking the Donald's hand once as proof I am wrong.
Policies and ideas matter.
I have written before and will again that the Trump Train is more like the eventual Schwarzenegger Train Wreck.
There is no there there. What proof does ANYONE have that the Donald can do anything that he says he wants to do.Yesterday in an interview, the senate majority leader, Sen. McConnell, said there will never be passage of any Trump plan to ban Muslims entering the United States. Sen. McConnell and congressional leadership is a whole other post. There is no record because while the Donald has never been in any political office. Like Benedict Arnold Schwarzenegger, there is the feeling of somehow we should just trust him.
I don't.
The Donald has no serious policy advisers. His national spokeswoman, Katrina Pierson, seems to be as unserious as he is.
In the end I do believe that the Donald could score some early victories. Or maybe not. The Donald does not have much organization in Iowa, a caucus state. He leads substantively in New Hampshire, but it is essentially an open primary. Think some Democrats won't try to skew the vote there? The Donald could win in South Carolina, but many pols there are making their support clear now that Sen. Goober Graham has left the presidential race.
If your a conservative and Republican, the only way we win is with the most electable CONSERVATIVE in any given race.
And that is not Donald J. Trump and his merry train wreck in the making.

Tuesday, December 08, 2015

Trump's Muslim Plan A Non-Starter

I get the point that Donald J. Trump is making regarding Muslims coming to the United States and our extremely permissive immigration policy, especially under the Dear Leader, President Obama.
But it is a non-starter for a variety of reasons.
For one, the way that Trump says we can stop Muslims coming to the United States is to simply ask them at the point of customs.
Really?! Does the Donald really think that a Muslim being asked that question is going to answer honestly? Why would they?
And many are not coming to stay but to travel and do business. Are we going to ban people who practice Islam, or at least say they are Muslim, from doing business in the United States? And travel, are we really going to turn away people simply coming to see relatives and or travel and go home? Many do that. Not all stay over their visas.
The insanity of the Donald is that he compares what he proposes to what the paragon of liberalism, one Franklin Delano Roosevelt did in the opening days of the United States entering World War II.
Interning Japanese-American CITIZENS and to a lesser extent German-Americans and Italian-American CITIZENS in concentration camps and taking away their property.
Why many Trump supporters are also pointing out that the former worst president of the United States, Jimmah Carter, banned Iranians from travelling to the United States during the Iranian hostage crisis of 1979-80. Even that is kind of wrong as this points out that the ban was against travelling TO Iran.
What is the pattern in all of that?
The United States took these actions against nationalities, not religions. And even that became questionable especially concerning the Japanese-Americans during World War II. The fact was that it was a total overreaction and did not prove to be effective. We threw the baby out with the bath water.
You know what nations use what Trump is talking about against a nation?
Arab and Islamic nations against Israel. If one has an Israeli passport, don't bother trying to go to a nation outside of Egypt or Jordan, the two Arab-Islamic nations Israel's have relations with.
Is that what we want?
I don't.
There is a way to make the point by simply not accepting refugees on face value. To some that is harsh and xenophobic, but rather than try to cherry pick between Syrian Christians and Muslims, we have to be willing to say no to any at this time.
What should be done is to visit this aspect of immigration without the whole so-called "comprehensive" immigration reform refrain and set very concrete policies for allowing or not allowing refugees into the United States. It is the role of congress and the executive branch. But I suspect that both have very different ideas on how to handle this situation.
But outright banning Muslims coming to and fro is not the same as banning people from nations that are clearly our enemies and or frenimies. My United States passport does not have a place for religion and it should not. Is it the price of living in the type of society we do, a free one? Possibly. But again, if congress and the executive could work out some kind of legislation that could do a better vetting process, it would help.
This brings  me to a new conclusion about the Donald.
I thought I answered the question that the Donald is not a fascist in the traditional sense of the word and he is not.
But he is a strongman type. The Donald is used to getting his way in business and it is totally different from politics in which, like it or not, coalitions are built. He acts and reacts like a businessman that has a set way and expectation.
What is troubling is that man conservatives, myself included, see the current occupant of the White House as a sort of strongman. Yet many Trumpettes do not seem to get that the Donald is the same thing only with an R after the name.
My point is that I do not want to replace one strongman for another. I want to see a constitutionalist in the White House. One that does not want more power but willing to let go of power, especially as in regards to usurping state rights and or obligations via Washington, D. C.
The Trump Muslim plan is a non starter and the reaction of a strongman, not a leader.

Thursday, December 03, 2015

Barbara Ma'am Boxer Continues To Be The WORST Senator

Seriously, I just hope that if California is stuck with either Kamala Harris or Loretta "Woo! Woo! Woo!" Sanchez as U. S. senator after next year for anything is a improvement over current Sen. Barbara Ma'am Boxer.
She is without a doubt the WORST person in the senate and that is saying a lot.
Look, both political parties have some hack people elected in safe seats and are none too bright. To be fair, a Republican senator I can think of that fits is Louisiana's David Vitter, who just lost his bid to become Louisiana governor.
But Sen. Vitter can't hold a candle to Sen. Ma'am Boxer.
Unbelievably after one of the worst terrorist attacks on American soil since 9/11, in a push for federal gun control laws, the ignorant tool said this:

Sensible gun laws work. We've proven it in California. And were not going to give up.

Has the tool been under a rock for the past what, 24 plus hours?! Did she not see the carnage that was committed in a state with some of the toughest gun laws in the land? How in the hell could this tool say what she said?
Yes, two people had a helluva lot of firepower. Most were high-powered at that. And all indications are that the two terrorists that carried out the attack yesterday in San Bernardino, Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik, obtained the weapons legally. And because of the California laws regarding magazines and the like, they are different than in other parts of the United States. They take longer to reload. And don't forget the bomb factory that was in the home of the two terrorists. And since they were killed in a shootout with law enforcement, we will not know what the California gun charges would have been.
But because today was a vote to try to increase background checks and allegedly close a "loophole" about gun show sales, our national embarrassment spoke in her usual manner.
People still get guns. Law abiding citizens follow the law to get guns. Some criminals do as well. Most who are criminals, however, do not. Even an outright gun ban, which is what is had essentially in France, can't stop people, especially committed terrorists, from obtaining weapons. Whether they be guns and or IED's or God forbid even worse.
What matters is how illegal use of guns are prosecuted. Not whether the person had the gun in the first place.
Sen. Ma'am Boxer's replacement has to be better than her for she is not a national treasure but a national buffoon.

Media Coverage Of Islamic Terrorism Pretty Much What You'd Expect

Yesterday, December 2, 2015, a husband and wife committed an act of terrorism that killed 14 and wounded 21 in San Bernardino, California.
As it turns out, it is  safe to say this was an act of terrorism, not "workplace" violence. The two suspects, Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik were not exactly, oh I don't know, Scandinavian. By the looks of the names, definitely Middle Eastern and or South Asian. And as more information is disbursed, it appears that they were . . .wait for it . . .practicing Muslims.
Put the two together and you get, RADICAL Islamic terrorism.
No, it was not some anti-abortion fanatics. It was not a case of workplace violence. It was a well planned assault on a group of innocent people, having a Christmas party.
But the media coverage is actually worse than expected.
Sometimes I wonder about the whole cable news thing. All the networks, CNN, Fox News and MSNBC. All engage in speculation and not trying to get the facts. Some of it is the sheer laziness of reporters. It is much easier to tweet and engage in speculation than actually using resources to obtain the facts and disburse that. Thus we end up with newspaper front pages like this doozy:

Why of course, it's all about gun control! And beating up people of faith, mostly Christians.
Too bad the terrorists had bombs that just did not go off.
Why do I mention the anti-abortion angle? Well, as reported by Allahpundit over at Hotair, Bloomberg Business made sure to note that the shooting was taking place near the local Planned Parenthood clinic. And again, knowing little if any facts, political "leaders" used the occasion to push for gun control. Again, not knowing any of the facts.
One fact is that the home of the terrorist, Farook, was described as an IED (improvised explosive device) factory. That as many as twelve pipe bombs were found is better reported in the foreign press than our own press.
Our press is interested in narrative and facts be damned.
The most important thing that media should do is remember the five W's and one H.
There is nothing taught in a reputable journalism school that adds an S-speculation-to the story formula.
The fact is that the line no longer exists between a reporter and a pundit. Every reporter seems interested in producing spin than fact gathering. Pundits think that their opinion is fact.
We must absolutely demand better reporting and less punditry in these events. It takes time and serious investigation to ascertain facts. It's not neat and tight as an episode of CSI. Once the facts are indeed in, report it accurately and then, then lets comment and pundit away.
When people that are supposed to deliver facts engage in speculation and feed a particular narrative, they are failing in their basic duty.
As the American media continues to decay further into irrelevancy, we the consumers of information end up being uninformed and unable to make up our minds as to what would be the best way to understand and deal with any given situation.

Tuesday, December 01, 2015

If I Am Against Donald Trump, Who Am I For?

I don't think that it is a secret that I support Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) for the GOP nomination for president in 2016.
But I also strongly oppose the campaign that one Donald J. Trump has been and continues to run for the same GOP nomination.
A thought came to me when I was on a Republican site on Facebook.
A gentleman was making the case that many of us that oppose the Donald seem to beat up on the guy and do not boost the candidate that we support.
The gentleman was and is right.
Thus I took his challenge and explained why I support Sen. Rubio over any other candidate. As it turns out, the gentleman is a Rubio supporter as well.
But his point was spot on.
One of the aspects of Trump supporters is the fact that they are always on defense because of the many wild things the Donald says. In their zeal, they are mocking and demeaning those that oppose their candidate. And we who oppose the Donald end up feeding this and forget we support some other candidate.
If someone that criticises the Donald does not support another candidate at this point in time, then it is nothing but dumping on Trump and I don't support that.
A candidate like the Donald comes around once a generation. Yes, he is tapping into a certain group of people. Not all are a bunch of racists and or bigots. Not all think the United States is in such a state that we need to Make America Great Again. What does animate many is the fact that the promises that the GOP leadership has made over the last five years have fallen far short. That the leadership has ridden the Tea Party and their agenda only to not support it when it counts. Sure, we're not able to win every battle but at least we put the Dear Leader, President Obama, and the Democrats on the record on any given issue. At least most could say that the leadership tried. Maybe there will even be a stronger negotiating point as well. What the Donald does is sound like a Tea Party candidate because he says the GOP establishment sucks. Yet on many an issue, he is not a Tea Party candidate in the least.
That is why I oppose the Doanld's candidacy.
But why I support Sen. Rubio is because of the fact he actually took on the GOP establishment and won. Many seem to forget that. All that some can remember is that Sen. Rubio tried to cut a deal on illegal immigration. Something that I oppose and think that the junior senator from Florida realizes was a huge mistake. I remember that Sen. Rubio took on now Democrat Charlie Crist and defeated him handily in a GOP primary. Had Mr. Crist won that race and the subsequent election in 2010, that would have been a sure vote for so-called comprehensive immigration "reform". As it turned out Crist was such a loyal Republican, he became an Obama Democrat and a loser in running for his old job in 2014.
Sen. Rubio has a solid conservative record in the senate (American Conservative Union lifetime rating 96% as of 2014. A Conservative review lifetime rating of 80%. Both well north of 50%.). And before people scream that he has missed senate votes, his record on that is quite a lot less than that of the last two senators to run for the presidency, Secretary of State John F. Kerry and the Dear Leader, President Obama.
When righteously criticizing the Donald, we must make the case for our candidate as well and that needs to be at all times. Just writing the latest wild comment and dumping on it shows us to be tearing down and being not much better than what we say about the supporters of the Donald.
It's not just about what we are against but what are we for.