An “authentic, fully American history and tradition” is lacking in Trump’s thinking. To wit, reading this article by Daniel Krauthammer titled, Without Exceptionalism, both lifted me up as-well-as saddened me. The article made my spirit sour because of the reinvigorated understanding of “what it means to be an American” by a young man while-at-the-same-time my heart sunk because of the state of the American people in nominating a complete scoundrel in all regards to the Grand Ol’ Party. What a roller-coaster ride that was! I will take Charles Krauthammer’s word for it that Daniel “has the sharpest, most brilliant mind, sharper than mine.” Without further adieu, here is Michael Medved reading over and commenting on Daniel’s article:
The key point I see in Daniel’s piece is that Trump views markets, wealth, and ultimately America as a zero-sum game:
- Trump’s world is a zero-sum game, and Trump’s America will start winning again only when everyone else starts losing. This simplistic thinking defies logic and basic economics. But it does appeal to a certain sense of American nationalism: that “we” as a collective need to rally around a strong leader who will make us once again richer and more powerful than everyone else. Why? Because we’re us and they’re them. This kind of nationalism, however, is completely unexceptional. The leaders of literally any other country on earth could—and often do—say the same thing to their people and appeal to the same nationalistic sentiments. There is nothing uniquely American about what Trump espouses. There is no American ideal or philosophy providing a moral reason for this national mission to “win.”
He shows an almost Keynsein propensity that manifests itself in trying to fit the American Soul into an Excel spreadsheet — viewing “what” we are… kinesthetically… at his deepest understanding [if that even applies to “The Donald”] depicting the United States as the “Crimson Permanent Assurance,” a (mostly) standalone short in Monty Python’s Meaning of Life about “a crew of aged accountants who throw off the yokes of their oppressors, take up the mantle of corporate piracy and set sail on the high seas of international finance.”
What a joke!
What an ass.
Every day I am more-and-more convinced in my decision to leave the Presidential choice BLANK come November. For the first time, since I started voting, I will not vote for the President of These United States. Bill Kristol is right when he says that we have 5-months ahead of us of watching GOP pundits (like Sean Hannity and others) “defending, apologizing for, and excusing” Donald Trump’s obvious zero-sum intelligence.
Good luck with that.
Amen to that! I won’t be either.
“America Guided by Wisdom”
(Click to Enlarge)
On the fore ground, Minerva, the goddess of Wisdom, is pointing to a shield, supported by the Genius of America, bearing the arms of the United States, with the motto UNION AND INDEPENDENCE, by which the country enjoys the prosperity signified by the horn of plenty at the feet of America. The second ground is occupied by a Triumphal Arch with the Equestrian Statue of WASHINGTON placed in front, indicating the progress of the liberal arts. On the third ground, Commerce is represented by the figure of Mercury, with one foot resting on bales of American manufactures, pointing out the advantages of encouraging and protecting Navigation, signified by an armed vessel under sail, to Ceres, who is seated with emplements of Agriculture near her. The Bee Hive is emblematic of industry; and the female spinning at the cottage door, shews the first and most useful of domestic manufactures.
~ Benjamin Tanner’s descriptive text.
The first black poet in America to publish a book, Poems on Various Subjects: Religious and Moral, spoke of this wisdom that guided one of our Founding Fathers in a poem entitled, “His Excellency General Washington.”
Just a small bio on this American gem before the poem:
- Phillis Wheatley, the first African-American to publish a book of poetry, was probably born in 1753 or 1754, somewhere in western Africa. At roughly 7 years old, captured by [most likely Arab] slave-traders. She was considered too sickly for hard labor plantations in the Caribbean or Southern U.S. colonies, she became a domestic servant for the Wheatley family in Boston. Though they kept slaves, the Wheatley’s were relatively progressive; after witnessing Phillis copying the alphabet in chalk, instead of punishing her, they decided to cultivate her academic interests. During a period when some states outlawed teaching slaves to read, Phillis was studying Alexander Pope and John Milton. Actually, the education she received from the Wheatley’s was superior even to most Caucasian males’ schooling.
May I also add to History Bitches slightly adapted info above that Phillis was also steeped in the Bible. And being a poet she was well aware of “lady wisdom” in Proverbs. (A more complete bio of her is below):
Richard Gamble writes about this “exceptionalism” with a warning…
And so, goodbye…
Mark Levin opines well on the GOP Convention and it’s rules… which were established BEFORE the candidates ran. So if you hear Trump wining about the GOP not following rules, or people saying things like if it’s not Cruz or Trump it’s a useless convention. The rules negate this thinking.
Then I excerpt a small blurb from Levin’s larger audio about “Dwight Eisenhower and Abraham Lincoln never complaining about having a contested convention, so why is Donald Trump? When previous candidates had to go to a contested convention, they knew what they had to do and what the rules were.”
Both segments are from 4/6/16 and 4/7/16 shows respectively.
For more clear thinking like this from Mark “the Great One” Levin… I invite you to visit: http://www.marklevinshow.com/
Mind you, this Larry Elder audio opens with Ronald Reagan discussing Milton Friedman.
In this fill in for Dennis Prager on Monday, Larry Elder’s first two segments of the show are really a “GOP vs Ideals” 101 course. Economics, Donald Trump, GOP nominees since 1988, Milton Friedman, Ronald Reagan, Obama, and more are covered in “Sage” fashion.
As usual I learn from Larry and I share this with you in the hopes you will as well.
The larger interview of both Tavis Smiley and Cornel West can be found here: http://tinyurl.com/ls6nrtw
In this portion Larry Elder deconstructs Tavis Smiley’s view of Ronald Reagan and his impact on the black community in the 1980’s. In fact, even though Tavis promises to rebut Larry’s stats… to date Larry has received no such response. And Larry often notes this in his radio show and in writing:
…Smiley: Every stat you cited, vis-a-vis people of color, does not measure up when you talk to the people of color who had to live through the hell of those eight years of Ronald Reagan.
Elder: What do mean, “talk to the people”? I’ve just given you labor stats, census stats — these are facts, Tavis. Unemployment fell faster in the black community than the white community — it fell faster for teens, it fell faster for adults, it fell faster for Hispanics. And you’re telling me when you talk to people, they don’t like Reagan, so therefore stats go out of the window?
Smiley: Larry, your numbers are not true. When I get back to my office, later today or tomorrow, I’ll send you some more numbers. You know this — numbers don’t lie, but people do. The numbers are very clear.
And Tavis Smiley’s “more” numbers have yet to arrive.
This seems to be a popular rejoinder when people confront Trump supporters about him being a Democrat:
- Yeah, but Reagan was a Democrat before being a Republican.
Brent Bozell responds to this non-sequitur in the National Review special edition on Trump:
Its called a “moral bank account,” Reagan spent years involved in the conservative movement before running. Trump has just “changed”… but wants single-payer health care (more left than Obama-Care), wanting to put his extremely left wing-sister on the Supreme Court, etc.
Prager explains this to the first caller in this two call upload:
The “A Time for Choosing” speech given by Reagan in 1964 could never be made by Trump:
However, I agree with George Will that this delineation with the common man of what a Republican “is” versus “isn’t” is past it’s time of any fruit:
The following is from Caffeinated Thoughts:
- “Gay marriage, in my opinion, is a conservative idea.” ~ Greg Gutfeld
….With all respect to Greg Gutfeld, who I usually agree with, gay marriage is absolutely not a conservative idea. Not unless, as liberals do with marriage, one redefines conservatism.
How is that? What is conservatism? That itself can be problematic. If you ask 10 self-identified conservatives for a definition, you might get 10 different answers. This much, however, can be said:
Conservatism aims to conserve the time-tested values, ideas, and principles that have been sustained over time by previous generations and traditions. (Here, a crucial correction to Greg Gutfeld: gay marriage is not a tradition.) These are values, ideas, and principles—usually with a Judeo-Christian basis—that have endured for good reason and for the best of society, citizens, country, culture, and order. That’s a brief summation that the late Russell Kirk, probably conservatism’s preeminent philosophical spokesman, would endorse—as would Ronald Reagan, the face of modern conservatism.
In an important speech at CPAC in February 1977, Reagan stated this: “Conservative wisdom and principles are derived from willingness to learn, not just from what is going on now, but from what has happened before. The principles of conservatism are sound because they are based on what men and women have discovered through experience in not just one generation or a dozen, but in all the combined experience of mankind. When we conservatives say that we know something about political affairs, and that we know can be stated as principles, we are saying that the principles we hold dear are those that have been found, through experience, to be ultimately beneficial for individuals, for families, for communities and for nations—found through the often bitter testing of pain or sacrifice and sorrow.”
That’s a solid definition of conservatism. Gay marriage, merely by its total newness alone, fails that rudimentary definition. Gay marriage has never been done before. One would never expect a conservative to rush into something as utterly unprecedented—and that directly repudiates the laws of nature and nature’s God—as this completely novel concept called “gay marriage.” Same-sex marriage not only revolutionizes marriage but also human nature generally and family specifically, the latter of which conservatives have always understood as the fundamental building block of civilization.
One would expect a progressive to support redefining marriage, because for progressives, everything is always in a state of never-ending, always-evolving flux…. Redefine family, parenthood, motherhood, fatherhood, womanhood, manhood, gender? Sure, says the progressive.
For conservatives, however, this is unthinkable. Indeed, a conservative cannot even “conserve” when it comes to gay marriage, because gay marriage is an untried idea unimaginable by any people until only very recent days.
To be sure, conservatives, especially those whose conservatism springs from religious underpinnings, should recognize and respect the inherent human dignity of all gay people—being fellow human beings made in the image of God—and should not mistreat them. But those conservatives cannot, in turn, blatantly violate (if not blaspheme) the teachings of their faith and their God on the sanctity of male-female matrimony.
The point: a radical leftist is eagerly willing to remake marriage and family in his own image, but a conservative is not. To the contrary, the task of the conservative is to fight that rebellion, to affirm and defend and preserve and conserve the natural-traditional-biblical family—i.e., that time-tested institution that Reagan called “the most important unit in society,” “the most durable of all institutions,” “the nucleus of civilization,” “the cornerstone of American society.” And children, said Reagan, “belong in a family” with a mom and dad. In fact, Reagan maintained that it is in a family that children are not only cared for but “taught the moral values and traditions that give order and stability to our lives and to society as a whole.” America’s families must “preserve and pass on to each succeeding generation the values we share and cherish.” Above all, Reagan stated that our “concept of the family” “must withstand the trends of lifestyle and legislation.”
And yet, gay marriage is no mere trend of lifestyle and legislation. By breaking the ancient Western standard of marriage between one man and one woman, it will forever alter our concept of family that has formed the nucleus of civilization….
The above nugget comes by way of Dr. Thies (professor of statistics and econometrics at Shenandoah Univ. in VA.), and I will highlight what I thought was important within this important post via Libertarian Republican:
….Nate Silvers, the uber-geek of politics, amasses a lot of data: candidates’s voting records (if they served in Congress), their public positions on issues, and fundraising sources. Based on the average of the two or three scores he develops, Jeb Bush comes out like Mitt Romney, John McCain and Bob Dole, three fellows who did win the nomination of the party in open years, although less conservative than George W. Bush and Ronald Reagan.
The bad news for Jeb Bush is that the Republican Party has been shifting to the right and what might have been acceptable in the past may no longer be. Looking at where the average Republican in Congress stood immediately before Ronald Reagan became President, they pretty much lined up with Romney, McCain and Dole. Back then, Reagan was considerably to the right. But, today, the average Republican in Congress stands more or less where Reagan stood….
(CNSNews.com) – Liberal supporters of President Obama’s executive amnesty claim that Obama is only doing what the conservative Ronald Reagan once did.
“Reagan never did this,” an indignant Rush Limbaugh told his listeners on Wednesday.
“If Reagan did this, then why did Obama once say he didn’t have the power to do this?” Limbaugh asked. (President Obama on numerous occasions has said he does not have the power to change immigration law without Congress. “I’m not the emperor of the United States,” he told Telemundo last year.)
“Well, why didn’t he say, ‘Wait a minute, yes, I can. I can be a dictator ’cause Ronald Reagan was, everybody knows.’ Why didn’t he cite Reagan back then?” Limbaugh asked on Wednesday. “Why didn’t he cite Reagan last week, last year? Why let this controversy gin up? If Reagan did it, why not say it at the outset and then shut up everybody?”
Limbaugh described himself as “almost speechless” as he prepared to explain to his audience “just how big the Left is distorting this.”
Far from issuing an executive order, Reagan in 1986 signed legislation passed by Congress — the Simpson-Mazzoli Act.
“Congress debated and passed a law to grant amnesty to three million illegal immigrants, and Reagan signed it. They are saying that’s exactly what Obama’s going to do. They are claiming that Reagan signing legislation, thereby making it legal, is the same thing as an Obama executive order. It’s breathtaking what they’re trying to say here.
“Reagan had a statute behind him,” Limbaugh continued. “The statute was called Simpson-Mazzoli. The very law that Reagan had signed was signed after it was passed by Congress. What Obama is about to do is write a law, or rewrite a statue all by himself.”
Writing in The Atlantic on Nov. 18, David Frum also said there are “huge differences” between Obama’s executive amnesty and the actions of Reagan did in 1986 and George H.W. Bush in 1990.
He gives the following four reasons:
1. “Reagan and Bush acted in conjunction with Congress and in furtherance of a congressional purpose, while Obama’s executive order would not further a congressional purpose.” In fact, Obama’s order “is intended to overpower and overmaster a recalcitrant Congress,” Frum said.
2. Reagan and Bush legalized far fewer people than Obama apparently plans to do. Obama’s two rounds of amnesty — first the young “Dreamers” and now their parents — could affect as many as 5 million people, Frum wrote, and thus “he would — acting on his own authority and in direct contravention of the wishes of Congress — have granted residency and work rights to more than double the number of people” who received amnesty under the 1986 Simpson-Mazzoli Act.
3. “The Reagan-Bush examples are not positive ones.” Frum says the 1986 amnesty did not work as promised, as illegal immigration actually increased in the years after the amnesty. “Let’s not repeat their mistake,” he wrote.
4. “The invocation of the Reagan and Bush cases exemplifies the bad tendency of political discussion to degenerate into an exchange of scripted talking points. ‘Oh yeah? Well, this guy you liked also did this thing you don’t like!’ Is that really supposed to convince anybody?” Frum asks. “What we have here is not a validation of the correctness of President Obama’s action. It’s…an effort to curtail argument rather than enlighten it.”
Politicians and leaders from both sides of the aisle make mention of this myth that we funded/created Al Qaeda via weapons, training, and money to the likes of Osama Bin Laden. The Daily Caller in 2013 notes:
…in just a one-month span, Sen. Paul has — not once, but twice — advanced a conspiracy theory that says that during the Reagan era, the U.S. funded Osama bin Laden.
During John Kerry’s secretary of state confirmation hearing, Paul said ”We funded bin Laden” — a statement that prompted Foreign Policy magazine’s managing editor, Blake Hounshell, to fire off a tweet saying: “Rand Paul tells a complete falsehood: ‘We funded Bin Laden.’ This man is on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.”
But that didn’t discourage Paul. During a much anticipated foreign policy speech at the Heritage Foundation today, Paul doubled down, saying: “In the 1980’s the war caucus in Congress armed bin Laden and the mujaheddin in their fight with the Soviet Union.”
The only problem is that this is, at best, highly speculative — and, at worst, the perpetuation of an outright myth.
This also puts Paul in the same camp as Michael Moore, who said: ““WE created the monster known as Osama bin Laden! Where did he go to terrorist school? At the CIA!”….
And this is the crux of the matter.
Truthers took Michael Moore’s non-evidential presentations and statements and ran with themAnother example that shows this myth isn’t necessarily one owned by strictly by politicians, as, this conversation on a friends FaceBook shows:
Antony: failed foreign policy means today’s buddies are tomorrows boogiemen.
Hunlsy: I just love the fact they’re fighting us with the weapons and training that we gave them.
Antony: Oh where oh where did Iran get those P3s and F-14 Tomcats?
Antony: it was the US – we used to be buddies with Iranians too. We played both sides of the Iran/Iraq war, which predicated Gulf I.
Hunsly: Likely from the Russians. Regardless, we’re fighting a group, not a country. This group makes all of its IEDs & buys all of their weapons with the money that we gave them.
Here is my short intercept of the above conversation. More info will follow it:
This is somewhat of a myth — that we sold the majority of weapons to the Taliban, to Iraq, and the like. For instance, in the following graph you can see that (in the instance of Iraq, which I was told over-and-over-again was weaponized by the U.S.) you have to combine the U.K. and the U.S. to equal 1%.
Much like us supporting Stalin in defeating Hitler, we were aligned with people whom we didn’t see eye-to-eye with in order to beat the USSR during the Cold War (WWIII)… a war that was fought from 1947–1991.
And thirdly, the Taliban didn’t exist when Reagan said this:
Reagan didn’t say that about the Taliban because the Taliban didn’t exist yet. He said that of the Mujahedin, the same men who would later go on to fight the Taliban under the name “Northern Alliance”
The Afghan Northern Alliance, officially known as the United Islamic Front for the Salvation of Afghanistan (Persian: جبهه متحد اسلامی ملی برای نجات افغانستان Jabha-yi Muttahid-i Islāmi-yi Millī barā-yi Nijāt-i Afghānistān), was a military front that came to formation in late 1996 after the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (Taliban) took over Kabul. The United Front was assembled by key leaders of the Islamic State of Afghanistan, particularly president in exile Burhanuddin Rabbani and former Defense Minister Ahmad Shah Massoud. Initially it included mostly Tajiks but by 2000, leaders of other ethnic groups had joined the Northern Alliance. This included Abdul Rashid Dostum, Mohammad Mohaqiq, Abdul Qadir, Sayed Hussein Anwari and others.
The Northern Alliance fought a defensive war against the Taliban government. They received support from Iran, Russia, India, Tajikistan and others, while the Taliban were backed by al-Qaeda. The Northern Alliance was mostly made up of ethnic Tajiks, but later included Uzbeks, Hazaras, and Pashtuns. The Taliban government was dominated by Pashtuns with other groups being the minority. After the US-led invasion and establishment of the Karzai administration in late 2001, the Northern Alliance broke apart and different political parties were formed.
The mujaheddin fighters who had previously defeated the communist government and formed the Islamic State of Afghanistan (ISA) came under attack and in 1996 lost the capital to the Taliban. At this juncture the Mujahedin resorted to the creation of UIF because Rashid Dostum and other warlords who belonged to various tribes but to no specific political party did not want to recognize the ISA as a legal entity, so the defeated government devised a military strategy to utilize these forces while not offending their political sensibilities.
In October 1996 in Khinjan, Ahmed Shah Massoud and Dostum came to an agreement to form the anti-Taliban coalition that outside Afghanistan became known as the Northern Alliance.
CNN was doing a special on Afghanistan and Peter Bergen asked for questions from viewers that he would answer. One of the questions is as follows: “If it’s true that bin Laden once worked for the CIA, what makes you so sure that he isn’t still?”~ Anne Busigin, Toronto, Canada
Peter Bergen responds:
This is one of those things where you cannot put it out of its misery.
The story about bin Laden and the CIA — that the CIA funded bin Laden or trained bin Laden — is simply a folk myth. There’s no evidence of this. In fact, there are very few things that bin Laden, Ayman al-Zawahiri and the U.S. government agree on. They all agree that they didn’t have a relationship in the 1980s. And they wouldn’t have needed to. Bin Laden had his own money, he was anti-American and he was operating secretly and independently.
The real story here is the CIA didn’t really have a clue about who this guy was until 1996 when they set up a unit to really start tracking him.
One person in a forum that was similarly challenged pointed out that this surely wasn’t the Taliban because they hated women in any position of authority — look at the pic at the top again.
As you read on, keep in mind Mr. Bergen was not a fan of conservatives, or Republicans. With that in mind, enjoy the rest, it is posted here so it will never disappear on me:
And here is another great post responding to the non-evidential/conspiratorial [leftists] on the subject: