Lame Duck Trump

It’s time for Americans to accept a simple fact: Donald Trump is a lame duck president.

After his reelection in November 2006, George W. Bush’s presidency remained constantly embattled over the US occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan. His approval numbers dropped below 50% in mid-2005, beginning a long and painful slide throughout his second term as president. Things did not get really bad until 2007, when the economy, which had until that point been more or less expanding, began to show serious and deep systemic weakness.

As the subprime mortgage crisis inserted itself with a crash into the American daily lexicon, Bush’s approval numbers dropped below 30% for the first time in the middle of 2007. By 2008, only 25% of Americans approved of Bush’s job performance, as grim casualty numbers continued to roll out of Iraq coupled with hemorrhaging job numbers in the U.S. economy.

Without the support of increasingly timid Congressional Republicans fighting for their political lives in the wake of the president’s collapsing popularity, George W. Bush’s legislative agenda became increasingly reactive, easily undermined by the Democratic controlled Congress. In every sense, George W. Bush spent more than half of his final presidential term as an ineffective lame duck long before the 2008 elections.

“The government sometimes … adopts
through passion what reason would
reject; at other times it makes the
animosity of the nation subservient
to projects of hostility instigated by
pride, ambition, and other sinister
and pernicious motives.  The peace
often, sometimes perhaps the liberty,
of nations, has been the victim.”

-George Washington-

Since his inauguration, the highest Donald Trump’s approval has been was 46%, four days into his presidency. His approval numbers dipped briefly and rose again to 45%, on March 11th. His popularity has slid inexorably downward since, with his approval number popping above 40% for the last time on June 22nd, almost 2 full months ago. In the last week of polling (8/7/2017-8/14/2017), Trump’s approval numbers have sunk to between 34% and 37%, and there’s no indication of them improving.

Trump is now in the same situation George W. Bush found himself in 2007. While Bush accomplished many of his campaign promises during his first term, he still had much unfinished business. He had planned on serious regulation reform, on making his 2003 tax reform permanent, on putting an end to the inheritance tax, and on other conservative platform agendas. With the support of just 1 out of every 3 Americans, however, Bush’s agenda were dead on arrival in Congress.

With only 34% of Americans supporting his agenda, how exactly do Republicans expect Trump to achieve now what he could not when he was at 45% approval? It’s time for Americans to accept a simple fact: Donald Trump is a lame duck president. Trump has no more chance of getting his political agenda through Congress now than George W. Bush did 10 years ago. There is only one sensible recourse at this point.

The interests of the nation demand a change in leadership, and, to be frank, a Pence presidency couldn’t possibly be any worse than the circus that Trump’s presidency has devolved into. Whether it be through resignation, impeachment, or declaring him unfit via the 25th Amendment, cut the cord.

Liberty is For The Win!

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In The Shadow of the Russian Bear

Abandoning a core tenet of western civilization is the opposite of conservatism.

Some things are abundantly clear now. First, Donald Trump lied about the contacts between his campaign staff and Russian government. Second, Donald Trump, Jr. repeatedly lied about a meeting he had with individuals with curious ties to the Russian government. Third, the entire MAGA movement position that the Russian collusion story being a fallacious story concocted by the media created for the sole purpose of discrediting the president is itself a fallacious story concocted by the president for the sole purpose of discrediting the media.

I am not going to pretend to know the details of any of these meetings, or, with any certainty, that they were necessarily dubious in intent. However, after the release of the emails by Donald Trump, Jr. of his correspondence with and the ever changing inconsistent story regarding first even the existence of the meeting, then the nature of the meaning, and even how many people attended the meaning, no rational person can continue to argue that the Trump White House is honest.

The driving force of the Make America Great Again movement was, at least allegedly, a reaction to the perceived rampant dishonesty from the Democratic administration of Barack Obama and the complicit media that, for eight years, strained the credulity of Americans by shoving one bad policy after another onto the backs of the American people while the media simply abandoned any pretense of objectivity or even reality by outright failing to report on stories that were inconsistent with the political needs of the Democratic party.

Americans were simply tired of being lied to, either openly or by simple omission.

“You lie!
-Joe Wilson-

Then along came Donald Trump. In plain, smash mouth rhetoric, Donald Trump waded into the front, hitting back at the partisan media. He called them out on their lies, usually on issues where the media was being obviously deceitful with a clear political agenda, but also in defense of politically ridiculous assertions (such as the matter of Obama’s birth certificate) that the media rightfully pushed back against him.

Among the core principles of “western civilization” (something the MAGA set loudly and often hysterically claim to be staunch defenders of) is that of devotion to personal integrity. This devotion to integrity is, as I just demonstrated, the very reason many Americans were so angry in the first place. When Harry Reid stood on the Senate floor, abusing the privileges of speech within the rules of the Senate and the Constitution, and falsely accused Mitt Romney of tax evasion, Conservatives were outraged because his statements were lies!

When Obama promised that Americans would pay an average of $2500 less a year on premiums, that they could keep their doctors, that if they liked their plan, they could keep their plan, Conservatives were outraged, because they knew that basic economic showed that insurance companies could not offer more services to more people for less cost. When MSNBC purposefully pushed the narrative that “white racists” were threatening violence against Barack Obama, because they some were carrying guns to a protest, Conservatives were justifiably offended when it turned out that the “racist gun toting white protester”  turned out to be a Black conservative gun rights advocate.

The shameless dishonesty of these Democratic Leaders and a complicit media created the very political wave that would lead to Trump’s electoral victory.

“To the best of my knowledge no person that
I deal with [has anything to do with Russia].”
-Donald Trump-

Now that Trump is the president, however, and Republicans control Congress, the same people who once howled in outrage over the bald faced lies of their political opponents now not only tolerate exactly the same bald faced dishonesty from Donald Trump and his brood of conspirators, Fox News, Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, Breitbart, Info Wars (which should have no more credibility than the side show National Enquirer), they perpetuate the lies.

Even while Trump’s eldest son reveals that everyone around Trump, including high up in his campaign had regular dealings with Russian officials, the MAGA movement proves that it cares even less about the devotion to personal integrity than the radical left they oppose. Abandoning a core tenet of western civilization is the opposite of conservatism. It is a betrayal of it. None that pursue a policy based on deceit and propaganda can be counted among patriots. Not now. Not ever.

Liberty is For The Win!

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Painting the Leopard: Never Means Never

Like many conservatives in 2016 and 2017, I believed the definition of “never” was well understood and generally accepted, and when people said it, I thought I knew what they meant. I was mistaken.

“Can an Ethiopian change his skin or a leopard its spots?
Neither can you do good who are accustomed to doing evil.”

-Jeremiah 13:23-

The problem with absolutes, such as “always“, “every“, “all“, “never“, and “none“, especially when used in philosophy or even politics, is that it takes just one counter example to blow up even the most well constructed argument. Just when you think something is absolutely true of “all” people “everywhere“, someone inevitably comes along and, merely by existing, punches a neat, irreparable hole in any political theory.

This, of course, isn’t a new idea, having been around since at least Adam Smith first observed the obvious problems with even the most benevolent of planned economies. People rarely do what planners want them to do, or even what planners think the people should do in their own best interest. Their reasons for doing (or not doing) anything at any given time are often incomprehensible to anyone but themselves, with whim, not wit, guiding their decisions.

While these observations, liberally paraphrased as they may be, are most typically used in economic arguments against the sort of top down economic structures common among mercantilist and socialist economies, they were, and remain, primarily observations of basic human nature. People may, in fact, act in a certain way, but they aren’t likely to act in that way forever or for the reasons you even expect.

All of this being said, however, there are still some things that are fundamentally and always true, and, as conservatives, these assumptions are part and parcel of our ideological framework.

“What a stupendous, what an incomprehensible machine is man!
Who can endure toil, famine, stripes, imprisonment and death itself
in vindication of his own liberty, and the next moment, be deaf to all
those motives whose powers supported him through his trial…”
-Thomas Jefferson-

The political right has often, with good reason, objected to radical redefinitions of established words, like “marriage” (which has long been culturally defined) and “gender” (which has long been scientifically defined), and resisted creation of meaningless words, like “assault rifle” (as if there is any other kind of rifle) or “transgender” (as if throwing a dress on a man makes him anything other than a man), loaded terms that provoke a debate outside the scope of this article.

Despite the right’s repeated and principled rejection of novel meanings of words, suffice to say, there is a very large segment of the political right that has taken gross liberties with the definition of a very simple word that’s meaning has, until the last year or so, been extremely well understood: “Never.” Let’s get the definition of this word absolutely clear. Simply put, “Never” means “not ever“. Less simply, it means “under no circumstance“, “at no point in time (before, during, or since)“, “absolutely not“, “to no extent or degree“, and is a direct opposite of “always“, “sometimes“, and “in certain conditions“.

My memory is very clear on this. All around me, there were men and women who stood up and declared, with full throated conviction, “I will never support Donald Trump!” The #NeverTrump hashtag was born on numerous social media platforms with the purpose of spreading and supporting this commitment to principled politics ethics. Like many conservatives in 2016 and 2017, I believed the definition of “never” was well understood and generally accepted, and when people said it, I thought I knew what they meant. I was mistaken.

“The whole art of government consists in the art of being honest.”
-Thomas Jefferson-

Despite whatever the moral cowards in the Republican Party or the “Make America Great Again” crowd may presently believe, no amount and no combination of election victories makes an unworthy man elevated to the presidency of the United States any less unworthy of that office. As Donald Trump has demonstrated time and time again, he is a man whose fundamental disconnect from the truth and adolescent obsession with trite and petty insult borders on the pathological.

More disturbing than Donald’s own demonstrable inability to conduct himself with any integrity at all, is his millions of accomplices across the country who defend even his most ludicrous and provably false statements. Regardless how “well intentioned” their motives may be (and that, itself, is more than a little dubious), no amount of white washing can eradicate the spots of any leopard, particularly one who insists on revealing those spots for the entire world to see practically every day on Twitter.

And shouting “Fake News” until blue in the face doesn’t repair the demonstrable abandonment of even the very simple rules of English vocabulary. If the meaning of the word “never” can be so easily abandoned, there is no ground to stand on with respect to the definitions of “marriage“, “man“, “woman“, or even “rights“. So congratulations Trump Train, merely by existing, you have punched a neat and irreparable hole in your own mind numbing circular arguments. Bravo.

As it turns out, painting a leopard still remains a time terrible idea. Always. Every time.

Liberty is For The Win.

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Running Out of Rails: Trump’s 100 Days

So 100 days later, how have Donald Trump’s central campaign promises held up?

Every president has 100 days with which to set the stage for his administration, setting the tone for the rest of his tenure as president. Couple this with the great political, economic, and social dilemmas that are rending our nation apart, and that tone grows that much more important to a nation gnawing on anxieties and divisions that spilled over from the previous administration into this one. Let us not forget, however, that this man, so his most ardent supporters assured us, was a political ringer.

Donald Trump was supposed to be a titan of deal making, quite literally “writing the book” on it. His ran on getting things done, ahead of schedule, with everyone involved a winner. In a deeply divided political year, to the true believers, this was exactly what the doctor ordered. After all, for most of eight years, the Republican Party has been playing underdog in practically every political fight on Capital Hill. Finally armed with not only the White House, but a high octane deal making machine White House, the sky was not only the limit, it was promised.

When the starting bell rang and the gates opened on January 20, 2017, what we were told to expect was a thoroughbred champion-to-be. What crossed the finish line, however, has been a horse of a completely different color. With zero significant legislative victories, a handful of largely meaningless executive orders, nosebleed inducing 180º flip flops, a clown car of personnel changes indicative of vicious infighting, and a growing foreign policy scandal that simply will not go away, the first 100 days of Trump’s presidency clearly has not gone as planned.

“We’re going to win so much. You’re going to get tired of winning.”
-Donald Trump-

Let’s start with what we were promised. First, Donald Trump and his stalwart supporters promised us that, despite his numerous flaws, the smash mouth real estate developer tycoon was a brilliant and strategic negotiator, the likes of which has never been seen. His pedigree as a successful deal broker that his vocal supporters claimed made him worth the gamble. With his Midas touch deal making, he promised he’d unify not only the Republican Party but the entire country. After eight years of scorched earth demagoguery in Congress and from the White House, Americans yearned for this.

Second, Donald promised to deliver on priorities that all Americans cared about: jobs. While on the campaign trail, not a week would go by without Donald eviscerating the Chinese for cheating and stealing American jobs through “unfair trade deals”. Donald promised to get America back to work by getting forceful with the Chinese. Once and for all, Donald Trump promised to not allowing China to “rape our country” anymore. He promised, on “day one“, to formally declare China a currency manipulator in breach of international law.

Third, Donald promised to secure the homeland, once and for all. His trashing of the Obama’s demonstrably feckless foreign policy, especially when it came to dealing with ISIL/ISIS. The Donald made a big show of being willing to say “Islamic terrorism“, over and over again, announcing that not only could he defeat ISIS, where Obama had proven to be totally ineffective, he said that he would do so in less than 30 days. He would not only defeat ISIS, he would do so without involving the United States in the Middle East or getting involved in Syria.

Finally, among many policies that Donald Trump (and the Republican Party) promised to do immediately was to repeal (and replace) ObamaCare. Even though legislation repealing and defunding ObamaCare has passed the Congress on numerous occasions, faced numerous court challenges, and has been the source of deep political outrage from Republicans and conservatives ever since it was passed without a single Republican vote, it withstood all of this, largely through the veto power under Obama, and helped along with a shocking betrayal by the Supreme Court. If there was ever a low hanging pitch begging to be smacked out of the political park, this was it.

So 100 days later, how have Donald Trump’s central campaign promises held up?

“…[Donald] is a chaos candidate, and he’d be a chaos president.”
-Jeb Bush-

Take just five minutes to browse any social media site, and you’ll find that the virtual (or too often very real) blood letting has only gotten worse under Trump, far surpassing even the worst days under Obama. After “The Donald” angrily declared war on the House Freedom Caucus, with several of his surrogates openly threatening political retribution, any illusion that Trump is interested in unifying either the party or the nation are simply gone. Quite simply, as far as his promise to unify party and country in his first 100 days is concerned, Trump has been a fantastic failure to the point that it defies description.

In regards to China, Trump’s drumbeat of hard line rhetoric and tough talk has turned into a soggy bowl of noodles. Very obviously, Donald Trump failed to deliver on his “Day One” promise of formally declaring China a currency manipulator. Twenty-four hours quickly became forty-eight. Days and weeks passed. Other than an executive order calling for an investigative review of trade balances, China falls completely off of Trump’s radar. Then, suddenly, Trump has done a complete 180 and said China isn’t a currency manipulator after all. On dealing with China, Trump has failed spectacularly.

Trying to deliver on tough talk on Islamic Terrorism, Donald began his administration by green lighting a military operation in Yemen that cost an American serviceman his life and killed left women and children noncombatants dead. Even after Trump has done several victory laps after the Yemen raid (that has yet to have produced any actionable intelligence) and then dropping a MOAB on some terrorists in Afghanistan a few weeks later, ISIS remains very conspicuously no “defeated“. Then, after promising not to get involved in Syria, he gets involved in Syria. After 100 days, Trump has not only failed to deliver on his promise, he’s broken those promises while getting people killed in the process. Looks kind of like a fail to me.

And as far as the low hanging pitch right in the middle of the strike zone? To be fair, he had help with the aborted “Trump Care” plan. Despite having months to come up with a plan, after conspicuously challenged by Marco Rubio to give details about his big plan to replace the failing ObamaCare, and the Republicans having years to devise their own plan, the American Health Care Act was rolled out onto the launch pad, then quietly rolled back off of the launch pad without a vote. ObamaCare was the one thing Trump and the Republicans were voted in, election after election to do something about. Honestly, 100 days is about 99 more days than should have been necessary to have fulfilled this promise.

“You know what they say about men with small hands…”
-Marco Rubio-

Trump was billed as the king of deal makers. He ridiculed his opponents as being “low energy” politicians that didn’t have what it takes to get the job done. It should be crystal clear 100 days into Trump’s phony phoned in presidency that, if there is one thing that Donald Trump knows a lot about, it’s not having what it takes to get the job done. As far as what tone Trump’s first 100 days in office have set? Probably somewhere along the lines of a flatbed of bag pipes being slowly fed to a rush hour bridge collapse.

Yes, that bad.

Liberty is For The Win!

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Playing with Fire: The Syrian Problem

Inconsistency, it seems, is the only consistent policy between the Obama and Trump administrations.

In 2010, after nearly a decade of war in Afghanistan and Iraq, deposing two tyrannical regimes, the military forces of the United States were on the clock to leave Iraq in December of 2011. Just 4 years earlier, the entire world watched Saddam Hussein, the “butcher of Baghdad“, hang for his countless crimes against the people of Iraq. Whatever direction political opinion of the Iraq War may have been blowing in America, the wider psychological and political impact of seeing the corpse of a hated dictator hanging limply by his neck resonated across a region of the world dominated by such hated dictators.

The seeds of change had been planted in the largely Arabic nations from Morocco, on the western coast of Africa, to Iran, deep in the heart of the Middle East. The tinder of raw nerves of decades of living under repressive dictators that, until Saddam, had seemed simply a fact of life now lay exposed. The entire Middle East became a powder keg of pent of rage that, for the first time in generations, had hope for release. The smoldering discontent that would soon explode into a raging inferno of protests and civil war awaited only a single spark.

“The cause of America is in a great
measure the cause of all mankind.”
-Thomas Paine, Common Sense-

Like countless men before him throughout history, Mohamed Bouazizi did not seek to start a revolution. He was simply a man born poor under a despot in Tunisia. At age 10, he dropped out of school to support his parents and put his younger sister through school. Unable to find steady work, Bouazizi, an honest man who believed in honest work, decided to take his fate into his own hands, becoming a merchant, selling fruit on the side of the street. He would buy his wares on credit, then sell them for a small profit, about $5 (US), the next day.

This was his life, and he embraced it. Through honest work and sheer will, day by day, customer by precious customer, Bouazizi hoped only to better his humble lot in life. One fateful day in December of 2010, a corrupt police official accused Bouazizi of not having paid for a permit to operate his stand, nevermind that no such permit was required by law. Bouazizi protested, partly out of indignation but mostly because he had no money to pay the official’s bribe.

As punishment, the police turned over his cart, spilling his livelihood into the street, and seized the only thing of value Bouazizi had on him, his produce scales. After futilely trying to get his scales back for an hour, with no way to pay back his debt, continue his business, or to pay for his sister’s schooling, Mohamed Bouazizi stood defiantly in the middle of the street in front of government offices with a can of gasoline. Before stunned onlookers, Bouazizi doused himself then screamed, “How do you expect me to make a living!?

The fire he lit set the entire Arab world ablaze.

“It is change , continuing change, inevitable
that is the dominant factor
in society today.”

-Isaac Asimov-

The Arab Spring was a moment in time, a chance for great leaders to do great things, and to change the fate of the world for millions who lived under tyranny. Sadly, for those rising up against their tyrannical governments, the west has long since exhausted its great leaders. When America had an opportunity to stand with the people, who had lived for so long under the yolk of tyranny yearned for freedom and equality, America failed to be America.

The United States and its European allies, instead of siding with the people, tried to prop up dictatorships in countries like Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, and even Syria. In the philosophical space that should have been filled by western values of individual Liberty and moral equality, in rushed radical Jihadism, uncontested. The battle lines in people’s hearts had been drawn, and, with the absence of American idealism, the intractable fighting began between the tyranny of political elites on one side and the tyranny of radical Jihadism on the other.

The full cost of Obama’s feckless foreign policy during the Arab Spring is spilling over into our streets, and, in no small part, set the political stage for the rise of Trump. Trump then came into the White House on a wave of bluster, slogans, and pejorative. However, if we objectively compare the “Obama Doctrine” to the “Trump Doctrine“, it’s hard to see any difference after the April 6th bombing of a Syrian and Russian held airfield. In just a few weeks, we went from “regime change” under Obama, to “not our business” briefly under Trump, and now back to “regime change” again.

Inconsistency, it seems, is the only consistent policy between the Obama and Trump administrations.

“Against the insidious wiles of foreign influence…
the jealousy of a free people ought to be constantly
awake, since history and experience prove that
foreign influence is one of the most baneful
foes of republican government.”
-George Washington-

Let’s be absolutely clear on one point. Where there is no clear American interest, the United States should not engage in a policy of “nation building“. By “American interest“, I mean where American lives have been taken by bad actors abroad. If it were not for the lives taken by Barbary pirates, Jefferson would have had no justification to spend American lives in Tripoli. Were it not for the lives taken at Pearl Harbor, Roosevelt would have had no justification to spend American lives in Europe and the Pacific. Were it not for the lives taken on 9/11/2001, Bush would have had no justification to spend American lives in Afghanistan.

As of the time of this article, no American lives have been lost because of the Assad regime in Syria. Despite this, Donald Trump has decided to pick a fight Syria and, by proxy, Russia. By all accounts, the airfield that was bombed by US forces was up and operational again within 24 hours, but the foreign relations damage may be permanent. Whether Assad goes or stays, there is nothing to be gained by intervening on behalf of either side, with the Syrian government being geopolitically aligned with the Russians and the rebels being geopolitically aligned with Jihadists.

If Trump’s intent is truly to do good for the sake of doing good, not simply for his own political aggrandizement or, worse, to deflect attention away from the many suspicious connections between his campaign and Moscow, then there are avenues for a pro-American non-intervention. It would, however, create significant long-term friction between Washington and Moscow. There are no safe alliances to be found in Syria, but there is a group within Syria that has capitalized on the political instability to try to assert their autonomy: the Free Kurdish Movement.

While not perfect, the Free Kurdish Movement has a legitimate and morally justifiable political grievance. Though the United States should not directly involve itself in the military activities and necessities of the Kurds, it is long past time for the United States to take an affirmative stance in support of Kurdish independence, but that is the topic for another time.

Liberty is For The Win!

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Stay Off of Reagan’s Grave

Here, however delayed, is a four point argument on the differences between Ronald Reagan, a titan of American conservatism, and Donald Trump, a populist, celebrity loudmouth.

Recently, there has been a push by the Republican Party’s propaganda machine to draw comparisons between Donald Trump and Ronald Reagan. In a recent article by Tammy Bruce, she focuses on parallels between how Ronald Reagan was treated in the media to how Donald Trump is being treated by the media, which would otherwise be a meaningless, but not inaccurate comparison had she not wrote one sentence in particular that put a burr under my saddle. She writes, “I do believe there are many similarities between Reagan and Trump.

No, Tammy, there really aren’t, and your argument not only fails to support that statement, it’s ridiculous on its face. On the first premise about the media attacks, I can’t remember a single modern Republican president or presidential candidate that didn’t come under withering and often vicious attacks from the American media. So suggesting that Donald Trump is somehow “just like Reagan“, because he is attacked by the press is a sophomoric argument. Cancer, tobacco companies, and oil spills have all come under withering and vicious attacks, so is Trump like cancer?

Reality check time. In no uncertain terms, comparing Donald Trump in any way to Ronald Reagan is nothing short of a slander of Reagan’s legacy, and I will not stand for it. In fact, I was so incensed by the implication that it’s taken days for me to trim this article from fireball to a somewhat polite retort. Here, however delayed, is a four point argument on the differences between Ronald Reagan, a titan of American conservatism, and Donald Trump, a populist, celebrity loudmouth.

1) Different generations.

Ronald Reagan was a member of the Greatest Generation. The generation that experienced the First World War, then fought through the Second World War, despite the terrible cost in human life, against the racist malevolence of Nazi Germany and imperial Japan. The generation that carried itself through the Great Depression. The generation that raised their children through the darkest hours of the Cold War. The generation that sent their children to fight against communist North Korea and their communist Chinese allies in the Korean War. Reagan’s generation saw the true heart of Communism and Fascism first hand. In every way, Ronald Reagan was a product of his generation.

“Our natural, unalienable rights are now
considered to be a dispensation of government,
and freedom has never been so fragile, so
close to slipping from our grasp as it is at this
-Ronald Reagan, 1964-

Donald Trump is a member of the Baby Boomers. The generation that was born in the shadow of the Cold War, after the Second World War. They vaguely remembered the Korean War. When the last of the Cold War era battlefronts escalated into full out war, the Boomers ultimately lost to a broken enemy, abandoning thousands of American soldiers to die in hellish Viet Cong prisoner of war camps and disappear into unmarked graves, and spat on the veterans who survived for defending their country. Selfless patriotism fell out of vogue. Under the Baby Boomers, divorce became fashionable and abortion legal. Trump’s generation became the “me” generation. In every way, Donald Trump is a product of his generation.

“It’s scary, like Vietnam. Sort of like the
Vietnam-era. It is my personal Vietnam.
I feel like a great and very brave soldier.”
-Donald Trump, 1997-

2) Different ideological backgrounds.

Even while the president of the Screen Actor’s Guild, Reagan was already actively anti-Communist, anti-Socialist, and vocally pro-American. During the 1950’s, Reagan traveled the country as a spokesperson for General Electric, speaking on the importance of political and economic freedom to the American way of life. By 1964, when Ronnie gave the historic “A Time for Choosing” speech supporting the Barry Goldwater’s presidential campaign, his political ideology had been sharpened by over a decade of public and personal exploration. By the time Reagan took the presidential Oath of Office in 1981, becoming the 40th president of the United States, his conservative ideology had grown deep roots for over three decades.

“I didn’t leave the Democratic Party. The party left me.”
-Ronald Reagan, 1962-

Since 1987 alone, Donald Trump changed political parties no less than 6 times. During his campaign for president, Donald Trump espoused political positions on both sides of dozens of policy issues, from public land use to taxation, from minimum wage to health care. Before 2010, Donald Trump gave substantially more to Democrats ($686,250.00 total, from 1989 to 2010) than to the Republicans ($520,390.00 total, same time period). In fact, only after first flirting with running in the 2012 presidential election did Trump stop writing checks to Democratic politicians. The only thing that is certain about Donald Trump’s guiding ideology is that he clearly doesn’t have one.

“In many cases, I probably identify more as Democrat.”
-Donald Trump, 2004-

3) Different professional backgrounds.

Ronald Reagan came to prominence as a celebrity, possessed of a personal charm and movie star good looks. Unlike Hollywood celebrities of today, Reagan didn’t “study” to become an actor. Instead, he majored in economics and sociology, and, though not an outstanding student, he graduated with a well rounded education. After college, he went into sports broadcasting, which lead into his career as an actor. His involvement in the actor’s union took him into more political realms, especially after he became president of the Screen Actors Guild. After serving in the Army Reserves during World War II, he found himself more and more interested in political philosophy, most specifically in the growing threat of Communism. It was this personal investment in pro-American ideology that lead to his run for governor of California in 1967 and ultimately for president in 1976 and 1980. Ideology, not personal celebrity, guided Reagan’s political ambitions.

“There are no constraints on the human
mind, no walls around the human spirit,
no barriers to our progress except
those we ourselves erect.”
-Ronald Reagan-

Donald Trump was born into the real estate business built by his grandmother and father. His obsession with his own personal wealth and celebrity began immediately. He studied at an Ivy League school, a fact he repeatedly reminds people of, studying business, though his academic records, like Obama’s, remain sealed. He was already involved in his own business ventures in college, and the degree, something his father insisted upon, was only tangential to his pursuit of wealth and celebrity. By the time Trump was in his 40’s, he was already a world famous billionaire, known mainly for slapping his name on everything from board games to airplanes, from frozen meat to luxury casinos. Almost all of these companies have crumbled into bankruptcy, still his personal brand persists. Personal celebrity, not ideology, guides Donald Trump’s ambition.

“I don’t even wait. When you’re a star, they
let you do it. You can do anything. Grab ’em
by the pussy. You can do anything.”
-Donald Trump-

4) Different personal backgrounds.

Ronald Reagan was born in a small town, the child of 2nd and 3rd generation Irish and Scottish Americans. Reagan’s father was a salesman and his mother a homemaker, both deeply religious people. Ronald went out into the world, becoming a sports announcer, which lead him by chance to Hollywood, where he started acting. It was in Hollywood that he met his first wife, Jane Wyman, with whom he two children, and adopted a third. His involvement in the screen actor’s union created an irreconcilable difference between himself and Jane, and she divorced him in 1948. A year later, Ronald Reagan met Nancy Davis, and the two dated for three years, before marrying in 1952. They had two children and spent over half a century together, until Ronnie’s death in 2004.

“Whatever I treasure and enjoy… all would be
without meaning if I didn’t have you.”
-Ronald Reagan, to his wife, Nancy-

Donald Trump was born in Queens, New York, the fourth child of 3rd generation German American and 1st Generation Scottish American. From very early age, Donald was involved in his father’s real estate business. Accustomed to wealth, Donald grew into an unruly and cruel young man, bullying other students at his school. He became so unmanageable that his parents enrolled him in a military academy, hoping to reform him. At age 31, Donald married Czech model, Ivana Zelníčková. Their rocky marriage ended in 1991, Donald having later admitted to numerous infidelities, the final straw being with actress Marla Maples. Donald married Marla in 1993, then divorced her just 6 years later in 1999. In 1998, Donald became involved with his current wife, Melania Knauss, who he married in 2005 and then allegedly cheated on in an affair with Karen McDougal.

“You know, it really doesn’t matter what
(the media) write as long as you’ve got a
young and beautiful piece of ass.”
-Donald Trump-

I have long since personally written off the Republican Party as philosophically bankrupt, and this misbegotten attempt to take credibility from Ronald Reagan and staple it cheaply onto Donald Trump’s rudderless presidency simply goes to prove just how bankrupt the Party of Reagan has become. This is why the GOP is desperate to draw political connections between the historically popular Ronald Reagan and the historically unpopular Donald Trump for obvious reasons.

While many Americans view Donald Trump negatively (55% disapproval per Gallup), his political agenda in Congress remains politically dangerous for members of Congress who would ultimately pay the price for aligning themselves with him. Loss of control of Congress would be devastating to the Republican Party’s hopes of pushing through any long term legislative changes. This is why these propagandist vultures are trying to open up Reagan’s grave to carve off pieces of his legacy.

This must not be allowed to happen. For better or, more likely, for worse, Donald Trump’s personal political circus is his own. To Tammy Bruce and all of the other GOP pundits I say leave Ronnie’s legacy alone. Don’t taint his memory with Donald Trump’s dishonor. If Donald is going to somehow succeed as president, he will do it alone, and evoking Ronnie’s memory isn’t going to save him one moment of shame, nor should it.

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A Short Word: The Trump Inauguration

By making an issue of how many people did or didn’t attend his political Quinceañera, Donald Trump manages to undermine not only his own credibility but now also the credibility and dignity of the Office of President.

Last Friday, Donald J. Trump officially became the 45th President of the United States of America. Eager to get right to the crucial business of the people, his first official press release was whining about the media’s reporting on how many people attended his inauguration. Apparently, members of the media had compared photos of the 2009 inauguration of Barack Obama, where 1.8 million Americans were in attendance, to a photo of a more sparsely filled National Mall last Friday, with fewer than 600,000 people.

President Trump’s press secretary, Sean Spicer, despite all visual evidence to the contrary, issued a statement that “This was the largest audience to ever witness an inauguration – period – both in person and around the globe.” Trump’s many supporters of course now believe that the media is lying (they aren’t), Trump’s many critics believe the media is obviously telling the truth (because, in this case, they are), and many others are wondering why this is even something a 70 year old man, let alone the president of the United States, should care about.

While this fight between the biased media and the new President’s infamously fragile ego rages in the American media, many Republicans, including those that only reluctantly supported Donald after the primaries, are insisting that conservative critics “give him a chance“. What, exactly, are we supposed to give him a chance about? To prove the last 70 years of his life are not indicative of who he is or who he will be as president? To prove that he really isn’t a petty, hysterically thin skinned, narcissistic thug, who gets what he wants through lies, slander, intimidation, and gross propaganda?

No, Donald Trump has already had countless chances to demonstrate that he can conduct himself like a well adjusted adult, and he’s blown each and every one. From citing actual tabloid crony lies about his political opponents, to telling bold faced lies to his constituents, and, finally, to demonstrably gross exaggerations about his popularity, Donald Trump has proven that he is more qualified to be bridezilla-in-chief than the commander-in-chief. Give Donald a chance? Pass.

“For ye suffer fools gladly, seeing ye yourselves are wise.”
-2 Corinthians 11:19-

Just 8 years ago, President Obama took office armed with a sophomoric political agenda shielded from legitimate criticism by his soaring personal popularity. As his general popularity waned, however, an increasingly flustered Obama flailed at political critics and opposition press, genuinely shocked that he and his bankrupt policies weren’t universally adored. This combination of nonexistent self-criticism coupled with a world class fragile ego resulted in a legacy of economic flaccidity, repeated limp wristed foreign policy, shuttered factories, puzzled allies, and emboldened foreign foes.

If the first 72 hours of Donald Trump’s administration are any indication, though, we’re in for a brutal few years of cyclical preening indignation, political grand standing, and escalating adolescence from the White House that will make Obama’s clownish “Beer Summit” seem to have the gravity of “The Last Supper“. Unfortunately for Americans, this reality TV circus promises to be the norm for a Trump administration still in its infancy and in no danger of ever growing up.

By making an issue of how many people did or didn’t attend his political Quinceañera, Donald Trump manages to undermine not only his own credibility but now also the credibility and dignity of the Office of President. We’ll soon find out if there is a limit to how much adolescent drama the world will tolerate from the United States before it simply loses all faith and credit in us as a country.

Please forgive us conservatives if we demand President Eggshell to standards above sea level.

Liberty is For The Win!

We just checked, and it turns out that fighting for Liberty isn’t free, because it requires time and energy to research, prepare, and propagate this message for you. Please drop just a dollar a month into the proverbial tip jar and become a Patriot Patron. Of course, don’t forget to like, subscribe, and share. Keep this fight for Liberty going! – @LibertyIsFTW