CEO of America, Inc?

ar-170219969Don Surber hit on something, maybe something important the other day. Let’s take a look.

His inauguration speech was not that of a politician trying to be a statesman — there was no talk of any torches being passed on to a new generation. He simply laid down the law. He used the occasion to tell D.C. the high life is over, and it is time to serve America again.

Trump is the CEO who led a hostile takeover of the federal government — and if any employees don’t like it, there’s the door.

He hit the ground running upon election and then sped things up once inaugurated.

He is having the time of his life, well worth the $66 million he ponied up to fund his campaign and the billion bucks he will forgo in income he could have made if it were not for the campaign and his first term. Economists call that an opportunity cost.

Trump is the center of world politics, as the president of the United States should be.

The guy who had the job before was too lame and inexperienced to wear the crown.

But Barack Obama was better than the alternatives: a former first lady, an undisciplined war hero, and a Mormon groomed for the job his daddy wanted but lost when he said Johnson brainwashed him in Vietnam.

Americans in the 1960s decided they did not want a brainwashed president.

And in 2016, Americans decided politicians failed them, and they did not want a politician either. […]

He is pushing his agenda — largely written by Heritage Foundation wonks — fast and furious. The denizens of D.C. are panting for air.

“Just two weeks into his administration, Donald Trump’s presidency is off to a rapid pace. But even by his standards, Monday was especially frenzied,” Sam Stein of Huffington Post complained.

Stein quoted David Axelrod, Obama’s campaign adviser.

“There are so many fires burning in so many different places that there is sensory overload. There was a lot of action at the beginning of the Obama administration. But it was focused on dealing with a crisis. This is of a different nature and magnitude. I wouldn’t say an order of magnitude, because order is not necessarily part of it,” Axelrod said.

Trump has flooded the zone.

Washington is a sleepy old town that rolls at its own, Civil Service-protected speed. This reflects the political class, which thrives on problems. Actually solving those problems is another matter.

Democrats think filibusters can stop him. […]

Trump is bringing a sledgehammer to the status quo,” they wrote.

The sledgehammer is to get their attention. Trump explained this at the National Prayer Breakfast.

“The world is in trouble, but we’re going to straighten it out, okay? That’s what I do. I fix things. We’re going to straighten it out. Believe me,” Trump said.

Sure, he has a large ego, but I do not think that is the reason he ran. I think he ran because he thought his nation was led by people who want America to be a second-rate country.

His CEO approach to a system broken by politicians takes some understanding. His UN ambassador, Nikki Haley, lit into Russia, which CNN would have you believe elected Trump.

“Haley was speaking at an emergency UN meeting about a sudden upsurge in violence in eastern Ukraine, where Russian-backed separatists have been fighting the Ukrainian army. Her remarks were notable for the stark difference between her rhetoric and Trump’s,” CNN reported.

I guess good cop/bad cop is a concept foreign to CNN.

This incident shows the difference between a politician and a CEO. A politician would appoint Nikki because she is a she and a minority and cute as a button. A CEO would hire Governor Haley because she is tough as nails and won’t back down.

via Trump Is O.K. Crackerby – Watcher of Weasels

Yep, that about covers what I see. Hey, world, guess what, America is now starting to move at the speed of American business. That means that President Trump is so far inside the OODA loop of the Democrats that they just broke their necks swiveling their heads, the rest of the world is well behind that.

There is a reason that nearly everything that speeds up the world, from the steam locmotive to the internet, was either invented or perfected in America, often both. Even Alexis d’ Tocqueville commented that American are always in a hurry, speaking of getting it done “real quick”.

The only place our government has shown this before is in the American way of war. And even then, only when the national army was involved. In the Civil War (on both sides), in World War I, and especially in World War II, it was on display. The continuous unremitting pressure, the innovative tactics, often innovated at quite low levels, and the sheer ability to operate without higher authority. Who but America would put bulldozer blades on tanks? It was first done by an American sergeant in Normandy, to plow through the bocage.

Our now banned Dutch troll said the military has nothing to teach civilians, well in America we’ve never believed that, probably because our military reflects our country, not our elites. The sheer genius of those who decided how to teach America’s officer corp is remarkable. America’s wartime armies have always reflected our society, the peacetime services, not so much. It’s the civilian influx which has made them, like American business itself, unbeatable.

Britain’s Speaker Bercow may think he’s so right on, up-to-date that he threw away his wig, and said he wouldn’t invite Trump to speak in Parliament, well by the time he harrumphed through his planned lines, he was irrelevant, and the laughter in America had begun.

That’s American business, if it’s cheaper to build it in Mexico, it’ll be done, until it’s not. Trump understands that, I understand that, most of America understands that. The key is to change the reality, not the rules. And do it real quick.

What the world is seeing now, is American business (no not big business, this is mainstream entrepreneurship in charge) running America. You ain’t seen nothing yet.

America, Inc., CEO Donald J. Trump. Nothing like it in the world, ever. Wait till he gets up to speed.

Only in America do you hear:

Lead, follow, or get the f*** out of the way

Happy (Belated ) Birthday, Uncle Billy

shermanDay late and a dollar short, as usual for me. Yesterday was Uncle Billy Sherman’s birthday. While I missed it, I suspect he would have approved of my post.

Arguably, Uncle Billy is the man who won the Civil War, although he needed cover from Grant in the Army. But the people that admired his work is telling. Patton, Guderian, Rommel, Churchill, Liddel-Hart, Fuller, and many others that I can’t remember.

When he went ‘Marching through Georgia’ he epitomized something he really believed. When one goes to war, one must either “Go Roman or go home”. It’s a lesson our leadership has forgotten since 1945. But it is the cheapest way to fight a war, in blood and treasure and it also means you’ll fight fewer wars because not many are going to be keen to take you on.

He’s quite famous for a speech he made where he said this:

I am tired and sick of war. Its glory is all moonshine. It is only those who have neither fired a shot nor heard the shrieks and groans of the wounded who cry aloud for blood, for vengeance, for desolation. War is hell.

He also said this:

My aim, then, was to whip the rebels, to humble their pride, to follow them to their inmost recesses, and make them fear and dread us. Fear is the beginning of wisdom.

And this

But, my dear sirs, when peace does come, you may call on me for any thing. Then will I share with you the last cracker, and watch with you to shield your homes and families against danger from every quarter.

Overall, a pretty good description of American war fighting, and why I think he would approve of yesterday’s article.

My friend, Schaefferhistorian has a bit more on Sherman:

William T. Sherman was born on this day… in 1820.  Reviled by southerners to this day, nonetheless, Sherman stands as an American military icon.  His doctrine of total war has been tossed aside as an aberration, American military personnel have been paying the steep price for ‘partial war’ ever since.

via Happy Birthday Uncle Billy | Practically Historical

In other news, there are a couple of pretty good videos out this week, so let’s have a look. First from Whittle and company.

And this from Melanie Phillips, I also like

Perhaps we should end with another couple of quotes from Uncle Billy which seems appropriate for the times

I hate newspapermen. They come into camp and pick up their camp rumors and print them as facts.

I regard them as spies, which, in truth, they are.

Seems familiar, somehow. But he also had the solution for us.

 

I make up my opinions from facts and reasoning, and not to suit any body but myself.

If people don’t like my opinions, it makes little difference as I don’t solicit their opinions or votes.

Interegnum

Not in the classical sense, of course. Not for a second is the US Presidency vacant. That is why the Vice President is sworn in first. If something had happened to Obama and Trump yesterday, Pence would have simply taken over. As nearly always, the founders provided for all possibilities. Here is, what President Trump told us (and the world) yesterday.

 

Most of it, I  like quite a lot. None of it do I detest. But I have a problem. Ever since I started this blog in the summer of 2011, one of our main themes has been the shortcomings of (now ex-) President Obama. President Trump hasn’t had time to make any mistakes worth writing about yet, although I’m confident that eventually, he will. So, while I have huge amounts of stuff in the archives, I don’t really have much to add today.

Here is the transcript of the address:

The Inaugural Address

REMARKS OF PRESIDENT DONALD J.  TRUMP – AS PREPARED FOR DELIVERY

INAUGURAL ADDRESS

FRIDAY, JANUARY 20, 2017

WASHINGTON, D.C.

As Prepared for Delivery –

Chief Justice Roberts, President Carter, President Clinton, President Bush, President Obama, fellow Americans, and people of the world: thank you.

We, the citizens of America, are now joined in a great national effort to rebuild our country and to restore its promise for all of our people.

Together, we will determine the course of America and the world for years to come.

We will face challenges. We will confront hardships. But we will get the job done.

Every four years, we gather on these steps to carry out the orderly and peaceful transfer of power, and we are grateful to President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama for their gracious aid throughout this transition. They have been magnificent.

Today’s ceremony, however, has very special meaning. Because today we are not merely transferring power from one Administration to another, or from one party to another – but we are transferring power from Washington, D.C. and giving it back to you, the American People.

For too long, a small group in our nation’s Capital has reaped the rewards of government while the people have borne the cost.

Washington flourished – but the people did not share in its wealth.

Politicians prospered – but the jobs left, and the factories closed.

The establishment protected itself, but not the citizens of our country.

Their victories have not been your victories; their triumphs have not been your triumphs; and while they celebrated in our nation’s Capital, there was little to celebrate for struggling families all across our land.

That all changes – starting right here, and right now, because this moment is your moment: it belongs to you.

It belongs to everyone gathered here today and everyone watching all across America.

This is your day. This is your celebration.

And this, the United States of America, is your country.

What truly matters is not which party controls our government, but whether our government is controlled by the people.

January 20th 2017, will be remembered as the day the people became the rulers of this nation again.

The forgotten men and women of our country will be forgotten no longer.

Everyone is listening to you now.

You came by the tens of millions to become part of a historic movement the likes of which the world has never seen before.

At the center of this movement is a crucial conviction: that a nation exists to serve its citizens.

Americans want great schools for their children, safe neighborhoods for their families, and good jobs for themselves.

These are the just and reasonable demands of a righteous public.

But for too many of our citizens, a different reality exists: Mothers and children trapped in poverty in our inner cities; rusted-out factories scattered like tombstones across the landscape of our nation; an education system, flush with cash, but which leaves our young and beautiful students deprived of knowledge; and the crime and gangs and drugs that have stolen too many lives and robbed our country of so much unrealized potential.

This American carnage stops right here and stops right now.

We are one nation – and their pain is our pain.  Their dreams are our dreams; and their success will be our success.  We share one heart, one home, and one glorious destiny.

The oath of office I take today is an oath of allegiance to all Americans.

For many decades, we’ve enriched foreign industry at the expense of American industry;

Subsidized the armies of other countries while allowing for the very sad depletion of our military;

We’ve defended other nation’s borders while refusing to defend our own;

And spent trillions of dollars overseas while America’s infrastructure has fallen into disrepair and decay.

We’ve made other countries rich while the wealth, strength, and confidence of our country has disappeared over the horizon.

One by one, the factories shuttered and left our shores, with not even a thought about the millions upon millions of American workers left behind.

The wealth of our middle class has been ripped from their homes and then redistributed across the entire world.

But that is the past. And now we are looking only to the future.

We assembled here today are issuing a new decree to be heard in every city, in every foreign capital, and in every hall of power.

From this day forward, a new vision will govern our land.

From this moment on, it’s going to be America First.

Every decision on trade, on taxes, on immigration, on foreign affairs, will be made to benefit American workers and American families.

We must protect our borders from the ravages of other countries making our products, stealing our companies, and destroying our jobs.  Protection will lead to great prosperity and strength.

I will fight for you with every breath in my body – and I will never, ever let you down.

America will start winning again, winning like never before.

We will bring back our jobs. We will bring back our borders.  We will bring back our wealth.  And we will bring back our dreams.

We will build new roads, and highways, and bridges, and airports, and tunnels, and railways all across our wonderful nation.

We will get our people off of welfare and back to work – rebuilding our country with American hands and American labor.

We will follow two simple rules: Buy American and Hire American.

We will seek friendship and goodwill with the nations of the world – but we do so with the understanding that it is the right of all nations to put their own interests first.

We do not seek to impose our way of life on anyone, but rather to let it shine as an example for everyone to follow.

We will reinforce old alliances and form new ones – and unite the civilized world against Radical Islamic Terrorism, which we will eradicate completely from the face of the Earth.

At the bedrock of our politics will be a total allegiance to the United States of America, and through our loyalty to our country, we will rediscover our loyalty to each other.

When you open your heart to patriotism, there is no room for prejudice.

The Bible tells us, “how good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity.”

We must speak our minds openly, debate our disagreements honestly, but always pursue solidarity.

When America is united, America is totally unstoppable.

There should be no fear – we are protected, and we will always be protected.

We will be protected by the great men and women of our military and law enforcement and, most importantly, we are protected by God.

Finally, we must think big and dream even bigger.

In America, we understand that a nation is only living as long as it is striving.

We will no longer accept politicians who are all talk and no action – constantly complaining but never doing anything about it.

The time for empty talk is over.

Now arrives the hour of action.

Do not let anyone tell you it cannot be done.  No challenge can match the heart and fight and spirit of America.

We will not fail. Our country will thrive and prosper again.

We stand at the birth of a new millennium, ready to unlock the mysteries of space, to free the Earth from the miseries of disease, and to harness the energies, industries and technologies of tomorrow.

A new national pride will stir our souls, lift our sights, and heal our divisions.

It is time to remember that old wisdom our soldiers will never forget: that whether we are black or brown or white, we all bleed the same red blood of patriots, we all enjoy the same glorious freedoms, and we all salute the same great American Flag.

And whether a child is born in the urban sprawl of Detroit or the windswept plains of Nebraska, they look up at the same night sky, they fill their heart with the same dreams, and they are infused with the breath of life by the same almighty Creator.

So to all Americans, in every city near and far, small and large, from mountain to mountain, and from ocean to ocean, hear these words:

You will never be ignored again.

Your voice, your hopes, and your dreams, will define our American destiny. And your courage and goodness and love will forever guide us along the way.

Together, We Will Make America Strong Again.

We Will Make America Wealthy Again.

We Will Make America Proud Again.

We Will Make America Safe Again.

And, Yes, Together, We Will Make America Great Again. Thank you, God Bless You, And God Bless America.

A Bit of American Leadership

Follow Me

Follow Me

Sometimes that’s all it takes to change the world. Recently, Paul Bonecelli, wrote in The Federalist:

President-elect Trump’s nomination of Rex Tillerson is clear evidence that Trump wants to change U.S. foreign policy and its posture in the world. For him, arguably no other choice would do but of an outsider with a record of setting and achieving goals internationally.

That’s good, because the American people want a fundamental transformation of our foreign policy. They want an about-face in not just our policy but also our posture. Over the last eight years we have seen President Obama avoid conflicts whenever he could while an aggressor advanced its own interests (China). We have seen him reluctantly engage in conflicts but with no plan or intention to win (Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, the Islamic State). We have also seen him make one-sided deals favoring our enemies in order to burnish his image with the Nobel and academic crowd (Iran, Cuba).

Americans have seen all this and the collateral damage that ensues: our erstwhile allies express doubt about our commitments to them in the face of our enemy’s aggression, and our enemies gather courage and leverage as they press toward their goals, which are always national and always strengthen the ruling cliques in these countries.

What have American goals been under Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry? Whatever the ill-defined international community thinks they should be, from war and peace to climate change to refugees to trade. Obama and Kerry have not defined and defended American interests first and then sought to convince allies and enemies to join or accommodate us, respectively. Rather, Obama and Kerry have accepted whatever our opponents and various international bodies want to offer us.

via Rex Tillerson Is The Change America Needs And Our Enemies Deserve

Yep, and it’s putting it very kindly as well. I note that in World War II, the American people never flinched, even as the casualties mounted towards the end of the war, in the horrific campaigns in the Ardennes, on Iwo, and Okinawa, nor would they have in the Invasion of Japan. But they did in Korea, in Vietnam, and now in the GWOT. I don’t think America changed all that much, through Vietnam, it was mostly the same people. It was that the government went about the whole war thing half-heartedly, without trying for a victory. And the last eight years have been even worse, as the Obama administration bobbed about like dismasted Hobie Cat instead of the once magnificent ship of state.

And that’s why Trump, and especially Tillerson. Like him or not (I do), he, like his boss, always fights his corner, and does it effectively, and he does it creatively, and more often than not, he has won. Did you see this, from WAPO, via Powerline

Chavez responded by nationalizing ExxonMobil’s considerable assets in the country, which the company valued at $10 billion. The losses were a big blow to Tillerson, who reportedly took the seizure as a personal affront.

Only Tillerson didn’t get mad, at least in public. He got even.

Guyana, one of the poorest countries in South America, adjoins Venezuela to the East. ExxonMobil got rights to explore for oil off Guyana’s coast, and in May 2015, the company made a stunning announcement:

In the deep blue waters 120 miles off Guyana’s coast, the company scored a major oil discovery: as much as 1.4 billion barrels of high-quality crude. Tillerson told company shareholders the well, Liza-1, was the largest oil find anywhere in the world that year.

For tiny Guyana (population 800,000), the continent’s only English-speaking country and one of its poorest, it was a fortune-changing event, certain to mark a “before and after” in a country long isolated by language and geography.

And now, Venezuela is starving in failure, and Guyana is getting rich. All because of American leadership. More is going to happen, too. And not just in South America.

If you recall, Britain help draft and voted for the execrable UN Resolution 2334, just a couple weeks ago. But then in a stunning reversal, PM May sent Kerry to the naughty step for attempting to interfere with internal Israeli politics, and turned what was supposed to be culmination of Obama’s anti-Israel policy – the so-called Paris peace talks into a farce. All because Trump agreed with the American people that one doesn’t send one’s best friend to the end of the queue, one supports them. And what’s even better? This is

I note that both the FTSE and the Dow are up.I doubt it’s coincidental.

Reagan and Thatcher redux? Unlikely, but it would be wise to at least let Trump take the oath first. But we are beginning to see a more congenial atmosphere in the world already. There will be setbacks, there will likely be trouble, for oxen will be gored, and there will be alarums in the night, and rumors of war. But, those are all things that will happen anyway, and it is better for the people of the world, as opposed to their rulers, for the Great Republic to shape events than to be shaped by them.

And so, we end with two truths.

  1. One more day until the inauguration. And look what Trump has already accomplished!
  2. Hillary Clinton will never be president.

Video Saturday

So, it’s Saturday. How about a video round up, of some others views. Let’s start with Pat Condell

 

A bit harshly stated, perhaps, but I can’t say that I disagree with him. The Right Angle guys have something to say, as well.

 

And a bit on fake news, and where it comes from.

 

Yep. And if you have ever had the nightmare of dealing with flat pack furniture, especially IKEA’s well, you’ll understand.

 

Seriously but not Literally

america-vs-englandI again quoted whoever it was that said we take Donald Trump seriously but not literally again last evening. It is true, we do, we voted for him because he looks to us like a real outsider, who is his own man, not an owned man of the progs. It was exactly the same impulse that led to Brexit, I, and many other Americans and Britons think. Here’s more about that impulse and the repercussions, from a British blog, that I found through still another British blog: The Conservative Woman, which has become one of my favorites. Here’s some of what Herbert has to say:

In 2016, after the best part of five decades spent infiltrating our media, our universities, and our pop culture, the radical feminists, racial minorities who see race as their identity, LBGT types, statists, and haters of national pride and free market economics, came out of the shadows in a final act of revolution, confident that the world was theirs for the taking, and it all came to nothing.

Hillary Clinton, the archetypal feminist, was denied the most powerful position in the world, from where she would have wreaked untold havoc on the most basic values that America and the developed world stand for. And we Britons took back control of our national sovereignty from the creeping socialism and the Soros-funded open society, open-borders mentality of the EU.

This was a massive shock to the progressive left, of course, as witness the parade of their weak-minded, slogan chanting, under-achieving, envy-driven, really rather stupid professional grievance-collecting, entitlement-ridden, acolytes, who emitted what amounted to a shriek of anger that their well-laid plans had been foiled by democracy.

The reaction of this rag-bag army of misfits and malcontents finally showed the new left’s true colours to the world. They demonstrated publicly that all they had to offer was slogans: ‘racist’, ‘sexist’, ‘homophobe’, ‘fascist’ – and, of course, ‘climate change denier’ whenever that part of their plan could be slipped into the equation.

During the 2016 US Presidential campaign and the Brexit referendum in the UK, the progressive left threw everything at victory through the arrogant media, the self-satisfied celebrities, and the pc professors – the so-called experts – who came out of the woodwork, confident that they would swing us all to their all-pervading progressive worldview, and that we would submit.  We didn’t. In 2016, in the UK and the US, the silent majority of ordinary people thumbed their noses at all of them.

This was the real revolution – a revolution of common sense and decency – of values and freedom. It amounted to a rejection of identity politics, grievance cultures, climate change hysteria, alleged experts telling people what is right and wrong, politicians trying to take moral authority over the people who elect them levelling accusations that they were racist when all people wanted was to preserve their hard-won culture, and protect it from being swamped by alien cultures intent on hegemony.

Do read the whole thing at 2016: The year the worm finally turned | herbertpurdy.com

He’s right, it is a real revolution, in the same sense that the American Revolution was. It is an effort to restore, to complete the revolution, if you will, to stand things back in their proper place.

Brexit is and was an imperfect tool for this, but it seemed and seems to be fit for purpose, to divide the wheat from the chaff, so to speak. Similarly, Donald Trump is not, and was not a perfect candidate, many of us had reservations, and we may be clinging to a frail reed in his cabinet picks. We will see. But then, neither was Stephan Langton, or the barons a very good choice for the freedom of the common man, but they gave us the first of those charters that have marked our history: Magna Charta.

What is not in doubt is that after still another four or eight years of Hillary Clinton as President, it was going to be very unlikely to put this right, and so it was time to act. This was not a communal, collective act, this was a decision reached quietly, inwardly by millions of Americans, as was the Brexit choice in Britain, and for very similar reasons.

There is a reason why the Anglo-Saxon countries have a thousand year long history of increasing freedom, no matter the opposition. Kipling, as always stated it well.

“My son,” said the Norman Baron, “I am dying, and you will be heir
To all the broad acres in England that William gave me for share
When he conquered the Saxon at Hastings, and a nice little handful it is.
But before you go over to rule it I want you to understand this:–

“The Saxon is not like us Normans. His manners are not so polite.
But he never means anything serious till he talks about justice and right.
When he stands like an ox in the furrow – with his sullen set eyes on your own,
And grumbles, ‘This isn’t fair dealing,’ my son, leave the Saxon alone.

“You can horsewhip your Gascony archers, or torture your Picardy spears;
But don’t try that game on the Saxon; you’ll have the whole brood round your ears.
From the richest old Thane in the county to the poorest chained serf in the field,
They’ll be at you and on you like hornets, and, if you are wise, you will yield.

“But first you must master their language, their dialect, proverbs and songs.
Don’t trust any clerk to interpret when they come with the tale of their wrongs.
Let them know that you know what they’re saying; let them feel that you know what to say.
Yes, even when you want to go hunting, hear ’em out if it takes you all day.

They’ll drink every hour of the daylight and poach every hour of the dark.
It’s the sport not the rabbits they’re after (we’ve plenty of game in the park).
Don’t hang them or cut off their fingers. That’s wasteful as well as unkind,
For a hard-bitten, South-country poacher makes the best man- at-arms you can find.

“Appear with your wife and the children at their weddings and funerals and feasts.
Be polite but not friendly to Bishops; be good to all poor parish priests.
Say ‘we,’ ‘us’ and ‘ours’ when you’re talking, instead of ‘you fellows’ and ‘I.’
Don’t ride over seeds; keep your temper; and never you tell ’em a lie!”

Hopefully, it works, at least temporarily, but if it doesn’t, there is a further leavening in the Anglo-Saxons. It has come down to us known as:

The furor of the Northmen

I don’t think anybody really wants to go there, but we did back in 1688, and in 1776, and once more in 1861. It wasn’t pretty, but as always:

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