June 8, 2017

Trump is Undiplomatic, Ignorant, [and Viscerally Hates Immigrants] But "There's a Lot He Gets Right"

Briton, historian, and columnist for UK Daily Telegraph Timothy Stanley writes, as reprinted by CNN, on Europe and terrorism: There's a lot Trump gets right.

The free world was led for eight years by the sublimely intelligent Barack Obama, who left office with things in pretty much the same disorder. The promise that Trump holds out is to be honest about the situation and take the steps necessary to change it. Where he oversteps the line, the law will hopefully restrain him -- as the travel ban illustrates.

But he is right about the need for a Western-Israeli-Saudi alliance against terrorism. He is right about the basic need to restore control to migration. He is right to project an image of the West that is tough and unashamedly Western. The West should cease apologizing for what it is.

The British Conservative government stands by the President in part because it needs him: Britain voted to leave the EU, and now Trump is Britain's closest diplomatic partner.

The situation recalls Voltaire, asked on his death bed if he'd renounce the devil; he replied: It's a bit late in life to start making enemies.

So, the state visit will go ahead, and there will be protests. But if Trump could only get off Twitter for five minutes and focus on the essentials of the Western alliance, he'd discover that Europe is edging closer to his way of thinking on the most important issue of our time. There is, increasingly, more agreement between us than disagreement.

UPDATE: I have revised my title because, as my blog brother points out, POTUS Trump does have one more important failing.

Posted by JohnGalt at 2:03 PM | Comments (8)
But johngalt thinks:

I continue to be at a loss over the reaction to Trump's TEMPORARY "travel ban." It's for ninety. freaking. days. During which, recommendations are to be made for new procedures to use when travel. resumes.

End of Civilization! Fascist police state!

Not.

Posted by: johngalt at June 9, 2017 11:13 AM
But johngalt thinks:

I dunno, maybe I'm just so used to presidents who get, at best, half of what they do right or, at worst, almost nothing. A guy getting everything right except one, despite being a troglodyte, kinda makes me want to say, "Hell yeah!" I scarcely thought I'd live to see the day. And I'm an optimist.

Posted by: johngalt at June 9, 2017 11:18 AM
But jk thinks:

You're right and I hope you hear my begrudging acceptance. If you built a time capsule and visited 2016 me with the news that Sen. Rand Paul had been elected and had accomplished the list I just enumerated, then I'd've been a happy boy. "Just kidding," sez you, "that was President Trump!" I'd need a Valium.

But nossir, I am not restricting the entire dangerous side of Trumpism to "a temporary travel ban." He's pulled us out of TPP and directed his folks to look at Nafta, Two GOP legislators have drafted a very restrictive restriction on Visas. Fed funding for "Sanctuary Cities" is threatened and ICE enforcement is way up.

The net effect will be far fewer visas, refugees, trade deals, and a large reduction in immigrant labor. Carrier and Ford have been carrotted-and-sticked to rework production plans. These results are not only not commensurate with liberty, but they are deleterious to prosperity.

Posted by: jk at June 9, 2017 11:53 AM
But johngalt thinks:

I do hear your begrudging acceptance. And it deserves explicit approbation, which I have not yet given. But how to give it? The main theme of this post and the linked article is, "Hey, that completely useless buffoon has done so many things right that maybe, just maybe, it is through knowledge and foresight and not mere accident." I guess I can only say, I congratulate you for setting aside enough personal vitriol that you are able to recognize said fact. (Which is no small feat given that so many hyperventilating partisans of the left are still not convinced that Hillary Clinton is not the rightful POTUS.)

To your points:

TPP and NAFTA are not unmitigated goods for American prosperity. For the most part since the end of The War (WWII) America has negotiated treaties with the other nations of the world from a position of benevolence. Sort of a built-in Marshall Plan Clause that all such treaties came to always be expected to contain. Hey, you know what? Europe has been rebuilt. Canada and Mexico are fully functioning economic powers in their own right. They may not be as big and as prosperous as America, but they can become more like America if they follow the right policies. Obtaining favorable trade treatment from The Great Satan is no prerequisite. If it were, how did America become the biggest and most prosperous without its own favorable treatment from some other benefactor?

Sanctuary cities are immoral outlaw regimes and should be opposed at every turn. Withholding federal jack is the very least that should be done. ICE enforcement is also long overdue. Most if not all of the consequent hardships are only so sad because of the incredible laxity of enforcement for decades prior. The law exists and should be enforced until it is changed. There is a process for changing laws. I think it's even written down somewhere, for handy reference.

I'm pro-individual, which means I'm also pro-immigration. I'm also pro-safety and anti-redistribution, which means all the laws have to apply to all the people equally. Being outside of "the system" is one more way of rigging it.

Posted by: johngalt at June 9, 2017 1:58 PM
But jk thinks:

Well, I have been insulted before, but I never thought I'd be compared to a CNN reporter. The nerve.

I do not say "that useless buffoon has done some good things," rather "that man of questionable grounding in the principles of liberty has produced outcomes favorable to liberty." And I think I have heard similar tones from you.

It's a vexing conundrum.

I typed the letters T P P and thought that we'd end up discussing individual issues which may not be productive. Yes, TPP has many flaws and is hated by many libertarians and free-market types. However, I do not think those reasons overlap with the President's objections.

One side line worthy -- some sunny day -- of further discussion is Sanctuary Cities. That smells of local control and federalism to this nose. You might not like the outcome, like states vowing to continue Paris Accord goals, but the decentralization is refreshing, nicht wahr?Sheriffs refusing unconstitutional gun laws?

Side chatter. But do know I do not consider the President "a buffoon" though his style is not one I'd program into a Sim Candidate. He has exceeded expectations in some important areas. But his ungroundedness rightfully inspires some skepticism, and just because his opponents are deracinated lunatics, I reserve the right keep my distance and judge each policy and action on its own merit.

Posted by: jk at June 10, 2017 11:50 AM
But johngalt thinks:

Thanks for answering my comment - I was concerned I had laid it on so thick as to harm a friendship (even though I know you can take anything I dish out.)

The "useless buffoon" construct was aimed specifically at the author of the linked post. Others swept up with the broad brush were linked only by their disapproval of POTUS Trump.

I never suggested that the man is a consistent, philosophical American hero, merely that he is the right man for the job America needs done at this moment - to call into question every aspect of our nations governing methodology, from top to bottom. The administrative, or "deep" state is so entrenched that some china must be broken before things can be put on a proper rights-respecting course, for Americans and for the rest of the world. I truly believe this.

And for all his failings I think even the most skeptical observer has to admit, he's purdy good at breaking china.

Posted by: johngalt at June 11, 2017 12:32 PM

December 9, 2016

"Hate Speech" Show Trial

"Putting this son of a bitch in jail is suicide. He has to sign or we'll never get that metal."

"No, we need an example, not a martyr."

"We can't set a precedent here. Not with this man."

"No."

Those are the pivotal lines in this scene from the movie adaptation of a favorite book. The end of the scene came to mind when I read about the verdict in the just completed trial of Geert Wilders on the charge of "hate speech."

Populist anti-Islam Dutch MP Geert Wilders has declared that he and his voters are not racist, despite being found guilty on Friday of discrimination against Moroccans.

He was acquitted of hate-speech in a closely watched trial ahead of next year's key election.

In their verdict, the judges said 'the inflammatory character of the way in which the statements were made have incited others to discriminate people of Moroccan origin.'

But they added that there was 'insufficient evidence' that his words at an election rally in 2014 amounted to incitement to hatred.

The judges also dismissed the prosecution's request to impose a 5,000 euro fine on the far-right MP, whose Freedom Party (PVV) is eyeing an upset victory in the March 2017 polls.

'In this case, the most important question is whether Wilders has crossed a line. This judgement has answered that question,' the judges said in their verdict.

'Therewith, the chamber finds that justice has been done. Consequently, no punishment is imposed.'

"Not a martyr" indeed.

Wilders, 53, immediately gave notice that he intended to appeal his conviction, as he believed it was 'a big loss for freedom of speech.'

The most recent opinion polls predict the PVV will top the vote, saying it could seize 34 seats in the 150-seat lower house of Dutch parliament, some 10 seats ahead of his nearest rival, Prime Minister Mark Rutte's Liberals.

Rather than hurting the controversial lawmaker, observers say his trial has boosted his popularity among Dutch voters, worried about the influx of immigrants and driven by eurosceptic sentiments.

Posted by JohnGalt at 7:33 PM | Comments (0)

June 28, 2016

'es a 'oss!

Nigel Farage, being hosslike (and having some kind words about Mister Trump).

Posted by John Kranz at 5:23 PM | Comments (0)