Vegas

That’s from the White House moment of silence for the victims in Las Vegas. You can find a video of it if you want. It’s moving and appropriate. The video has a close-up near the end where Melania looks like she is about to cry, where the President looks sad and determined. Both are appropriate. Far more so than most of the reactions around the country or the world. As usual, I was watching British news yesterday morning, and the instant, insistent, and arrogant drumbeat for gun control angered me nearly as much as the massacre itself. It will be a long time before (if ever) I tune in again. From what I read the American media, and a good many politicians weren’t any better. It’s a time to mourn the dead, succour the wounded, and attempt to comfort the bereaved, then it will be time to see if we can figure out what happened, and what, if anything, we can do to prevent a  repeat.

I know essentially nothing. To me, it sounded too mechanical to be semi-automatic fire and too slow to be fully automatic fire. (Actually, it sounded like an old BAR). There are reports that he modified an AR 15 and/or an AK version to bump fire, or with a trigger device. Sounds about right to me. But there are reports out there supporting anything you want it to be. Nobody knows, but everybody is riding their hobbyhorses for all they’re worth. In sum, it is simply disgusting on all sides. Funny that of all of us, Donald Trump is nearly the only one to get it right.

I have little to add to that. In time we will know more, and perhaps there is a way we can make a repeat less likely. But it is also possible that, as Bill O’Reilly said yesterday, this is one of the prices we pay for freedom. Today, and as it was almost 250 years ago if so, it is worth it.

Eventually, the police will have more information for us,   as will the Federal agencies. The cause isn’t helped because they squandered their reputations one and all over the last few years, but that is where we are. God help us all.

God bless the victims, their family and friends, Las Vegas, and us all.

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45 Finally

And so for the forty-fifth time, we in America will pass the presidency to a new man. That man is Donald Trump, it hasn’t mattered since 8 November whether you (or I) think that is the greatest thing ever or the worst. As I say so often, reality is real. He joins an uninterrupted line that stretches back to George Washington. That is, I believe the longest continuous government in the world, quite a record for a bunch of men who rebelled against the greatest empire in their world, and when they managed to win, designed a government from scratch.

This has been a divisive election, the whole world knows that, and there are a lot of what can only be called sore losers around. This too is nothing new. My friend, juwannadoright, wrote of another one, we both remember.

It was Inauguration Day, January 20, 1961 and I was very sad.  John Fitzgerald Kennedy was going to become President of the United States, succeeding Dwight David Eisenhower in that position.

My parents had both supported Richard M. Nixon in the 1960 election and were disappointed in its outcome.  Nevertheless, like most of those in the country, they accepted its results and hoped that the new president would be good for the country.  Kennedy’s election was not the source of my sadness.  It was that we were losing Eisenhower.

I never knew either of my grandfathers.  But when I watched Ike on our Dumont television, he always impressed me as the kind of person who, if I were able, I would adopt as my foster grandfather.  He impressed me as calm, reasoned and a person who had control of every situation using his extensive life experience as his guide.  I felt safe with him running the country.  That was true despite the fact that many of our public buildings hosted “Air Raid Shelter” signs on their facades and that we conducted regular air raid exercises at school.  The cold war with our recently former ally, the Soviet Union, was in full bloom.

The presidential election of 1960 had not been without controversy.  Nixon carried 26 states to Kennedy’s 22.  But Kennedy won the nationwide popular vote by slightly more than 118,00,  rather remarkable considering that at that time there were 17 million more voters registered as Democrats than there were Republicans.   Kennedy overwhelmingly won the electoral college garnering 303 votes to Nixon’s 219, a margin of victory not very dissimilar from the margin that Trump had over Clinton in the 2016 election.  Ten states were decided by fewer than ten thousand votes each.  It was the closest election since 1916 when incumbent President Woodrow Wilson defeated Supreme Court Justice Charles Evan Hughes.  Despite a number of state recounts affirming the results, there were those who considered Kennedy’s election “illegitimate.”

She’s right, I remember it too. My parents supported Kennedy, but I remember it was a bit reluctant. They were New Dealers, like so many that lived through the Dirty Thirties and the Second World War, but they were also staunch Protestants. They would never have thought of discriminating in their personal lives against Catholics, but the history of our churches would have entered their minds. But it didn’t work out all that badly, although Kennedy’s inexperience did end up costing America both life and treasure. That’s the way of the world.

Unless we’re very lucky, Trump’s experience may be similar. Obama’s certainly has been, compounded by his seeming inability to learn from his, let alone others, mistakes. There are rumors of protests, well, there usually are, although they are spiced this time with threats of violence. Protest, as always in America, is fine, Violence, as always, is beyond the pale, and no doubt will be met accordingly. And no matter what anyone says, this is not the most divisive time in our history, that was 1861-65, and I pray we never again see the like.

Ronald Reagan, in 1977, gave a speech that summarized many of the problems we face. He said.

But how much are we to blame for what has happened? Beginning with the traumatic experience of the Great Depression, we the people have turned more and more to government for answers that government has neither the right nor the capacity to provide. But government, as an institution, always tends to increase in size and power, not just this government—any government. It’s built-in. And so government attempted to provide the answers.

The result is a fourth branch added to the traditional three of executive, legislative, and judicial: a vast federal bureaucracy that’s now being imitated in too many states and too many cities, a bureaucracy of enormous power which determines policy to a greater extent than any of us realize, very possibly to a greater extent than our own elected representatives. And it can’t be removed from office by our votes.

Hat tip to Steven Hayward at Powerline for that.

That is indeed much of our problem, as it is for others as well. The bureaucrats, however necessary they may be, have grown out of control, of the President, of the Congress, and especially of the People. That is a problem we must solve, our very freedom depends on it. Steve in his upcoming book says this:

“That bureaucratic government is the partisan instrument of the Democratic Party is the most obvious, yet least remarked upon, trait of our time.”

He’s correct, and it would be just as pernicious if it were the Republicans. Somehow, a solution must be found. But not today.

Today is a day to reflect on what we have created and sustained in America. A land that started as a subsistence farming strip along the Atlantic ocean has transformed itself into a free land that is by quite a lot the most powerful country the world has ever seen.

Congratulations, Mr. President and may God bless you and the United States.

Whittle on the Election

Yeah, I was out all day yesterday, and so got caught short. So here’s Bill Whittle on the election.

45

Well, we did it, we elected Donald Trump. Maybe it’s a good thing, I think so. But mostly because Hillary and her entitlement is so yesterday. In fact, maybe the day of dynasty in America has passed as well, Jeb didn’t do so well either. Something we’ll have to see about. Greg Gutfeld nailed a good bit of it here.

 

One of the more interesting things for me was that I ended up watching the election results on the BBC, there too it was a continuous broadcast until I gave up about 1:30 CST. What we do here is important. America is important to the world.

 

Winners:

Trump, of course. But strangely with the NY business dealmaker, who is somewhat reminiscent of a used car dealer, small town America won. It’s a potential victory at this point, but it could be a full on counterrevolution. Lots of work ahead, though.

See also: Brexit, and all the so-called right wing parties in Europe, this should give them hope as well. Again, America leads.

Losers:

Both political parties, maybe. They’ve both become too much of the Acela corridor.

Dynasties, as I said above.

And biggest loser of all: The old media, they threw off their cloak of objectivity, and while most of us said, “So, what’s new about that?” There were, I suspect, a lot of low information people who suddenly had a glass of cold water thrown in their faces.

A new day in America? Well, the sun came up in the east this morning, for the rest, it will be what ‘we, the people’ make of it. Because what really won yesterday, was America. Always new, always revolutionary, but the oldest continuous government in the world. On we go.

A Basket of Deplorable Videos

Ever wonder what’s stalled the economy and killed the American dream?

Clinton’s lie ratchet, yes, yes it is just like this

And it’s the same here, only the subject is different.

And poor little Hillary just isn’t a match for a man, not even Trump.

Hillary Pole dancing, now that’s deplorable!

 

How to Win the White House and Save the World

Cant-fix-stupid-cropI periodically reread (or watch) some of Reagan’s speeches, apparently Ace does as well. And he’s noticed something that has vaguely bugged me, as well:

I’ve been reading some of Reagan’s old speeches to confirm something to myself. At the Trump-less debate, Rand Paul finished his closing statement by saying something like, “And I’m the only Republican who’ll balance the budget.”

This provoked a reaction from me, because I thought — would Reagan have just made the promise that he would balance the budget? In a closing statement, in which he could chose his own words as he liked?

Looking back at Reagan’s speeches, I don’t see him just promising some government action. I see him promising a government action and then immediately telling you how this will directly and tangibly benefit you.

This has something to do with Trump’s appeal, he does it crudely, but “we’re gonna get rich” is surely a benefit. But other things we talk about have them too. Reducing regulatory burden? More jobs and/or better pay because business’ aren’t spending mega bucks doing government paperwork, and trying to comply with nonsensical ideas imposed by government lawyers. And so on, ad infinitum.

This ties into what economists call ‘opportunity cost’. Every dollar spent complying with Washington (or Lincoln, for that matter) could have been spent in other ways, buying a car, expanding operations, saving for college, whatever. It’s true for us all, business and labor, rich and poor, whatever. What the government takes, we can’t spend for what we want or need.

Ace again:

So often I hear candidates lapse into Conserva-Speak where they trouble themselves over points of policy, shorthanding years or decades of conservative ideological infighting on the issue.

But they do not end their statement with:

* This will make you freer.

* This will make you safer.

* This will make you richer.

* This will make you happier.

* This will make a better world for your children.

There is a principle called the 80/20 principle. You surely know it: 20% of the work produces 80% of the gains. But the next 80% of the work only produces the last 20% of the gains.

Trump is being taken seriously because he’s not forgetting the most important thing: to tell people

via How to Win the White House and Save the World: Don’t Talk <i>of</i> Reagan. Talk <i>Like</i> Reagan..

YUP!! Talk like Reagan, it a good part of why he won, twice.

A friend of mine published a so-called rant yesterday. I don’t think it is, really. To my mind, it is simple common sense, from those of us out here on the fruited plain, expressed quite clearly. Here’s part of what Cultural Limits had to say:

Two states into the 2016 presidential primary season, and the Republican “establishment” has yet to finish above third place.  Not that two states is all that much in the larger scheme of things (especially when the states in question are Iowa and New Hampshire, important only because they butted in at the front of the line), but out of the gate, the people who supposedly know what they are doing are losing, and losing badly.

Why?  Well, as so many of us have observed since 2009 when the electorate decided exercise their first amendment right to peacefully assemble, and over a million of them did so in Washington on September 12 of that year (a day that scared the $#@! out of all political operatives, according to one insider at the time), the American people are…how do we put this…PISSED OFF.  No one in Washington seems to be listening to the great unwashed masses that foot the bill for the government and everything else that seems to get stuck in the swamp that is the District of Columbia.  At that point over six years ago, the issue was mostly taxes, and the specter of ObamaCare, that has been every bit of the nightmare predicted.  Now…now the issues are so numerous that the people of the country fear for survival: the culture, the country, and, well, we the people ourselves.

We out on the fruited plain see an emasculated “establishment” that cannot or will not put our best interests ahead of their own and those of their donors.

[…] These are real, actual results which are the consequences of real, actual resentment stemming from real, actual betrayal.

The establishment may not see it that way, but the people do.  And that is what matters this time around.  2016 is the most important election in at least one hundred years in the United States.  The “dumbed-down” people are proving that they aren’t as much the blind followers as the “establishment” would like to believe.  The people aren’t falling for the narrative.  We are making up our own minds.  And we want America to be great again.

Now the question is who actually can facilitate that happening….

via: RANT: GOP Establishment FINALLY Notices How Ticked Off The Voters Are

Yes, and that is what We the (sovereign) People of these United States are going to decide this year, not the establishment (whoever they are). Us!

 

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