Monday, November 14, 2016

Reflections on weeping over the US Presidential election

By James T. Carney

Boy, if I had recognized that Trump’s election would have caused all the weeping and gnashing of teeth that I see [some, for example, in yesterday’s post], I would have voted for him. However, it would make more sense for “liberals” to start dealing with reality and learn some lessons from this campaign.

Hillary Clinton was the worst individual since 1924 to be nominated for President on the Democratic ticket. Had the Democrats nominated Joe Biden, they would have won in a landslide. Hillary lies like a trooper, as evidenced by all her false statements to the FBI and the public about why she used her own, insecure email account for government business. (Not only was her account insecure but the recipients were idiots – hundreds of thousands of her emails ended up on a computer owned by a sexual pervert.)
    She is as mendacious as they come. Goldman Sachs was not paying her $625,000 per speech [the amount varies by source] because she was the greatest orator since Cicero. They were buying influence, as were some donors to the Clinton Foundation. Hillary’s main interest in life is to be the first female President – and after that to be a millionaire. She has succeeded in the last at least.

Do the people who talk about [the vast] right-wing conspiracy remember that this conspiracy theory was Hillary’s response to the revelations about Bill’s affair with an intern who was closer in age to his daughter than to him? Was this a right-wing conspiracy? How many of the people who now condemn Trump for his treatment of women said anything about Bill’s? The answer is: almost none of them. Hillary’s lack of support among younger voters reflects their repudiation of the double standard of those who always condoned Bill’s bimbo eruptions.

Despite all the claims that Hillary won the popular vote, you might note that the Republican Party has elected 31 of our states’ governors, and has a majority in the U.S. Senate. Neither of these results can reflect the gerrymandering that politicians of both parties engage in. Probably one of the most extreme examples of gerrymandering is the creation of a “black” district in North Carolina that wanders all over the state. Of course, some liberals (including my sister and brother-in-law) are in favor of this as giving “blacks” some representation.
    I view gerrymandering as the greatest defect of the present system because it facilitates the election of extreme candidates and the retention of incumbents. We will see few professional politicians seeking to end gerrymandering, although progress has been made in Arizona and California.

The Democratic Party has sold out the working class in the interests of “open borders and open trade” – a Hillary policy that she was willing to tell Goldman Sachs about but not the rest of us. (Of course, the Republicans have sold the working class out too with the voodoo economics of tax cuts for the rich.) The steel industry has been devastated by imports of subsidized foreign steel. No administration up to now – Democratic or Republican – has been willing to protect domestic industry from unfair competition. Trump may be different, which is why he carried traditionally Democratic states such as Pennsylvania and Michigan.

Americans are not interested in adventures abroad. One of the two foreign policy disasters of the Obama administration was the Clinton-inspired intervention in Libya. If elected, she would have started intervention in Syria and possibly provoked clashes with the military. After eight years in office, Obama has us [still] involved in Iraq an Afghanistan. What we need to recognize is that we have no friends in the Middle East. We have temporary allies such as the Israelis and the Kurds, but they would all sell us for salt were it in their interest to do so. Witness, for example, Israel’s celebration of the arrival of Jonathan Pollard in Israel, where this traitor to the United States was seen as a hero to the Israelis. Trump stands for a less interventionist policy than Hillary did.

The Obama administration (which Hillary’s administration would have been a continuation of) has been a disaster for the wage-earning middle class. (Now, I myself have done well during this administration [Mr. Carney is an attorney-at-law], which is prima facie evidence that things are not right.) Wages are stagnant; many people are stuck working part-time when they want full-time jobs. What Obama needed to have done when he came into office was to enact the biggest public works legislation we have seen since the New Deal. The economy needs infrastructure improvements like no one’s business. The traditional – and economically sensible – Democratic approach to recession is spending on public works. Infrastructure spending would have increased the incomes of the working middle class.
    Obama, however, decided to use every inch of political capital to force through Obamacare – a bastardized piece of legislation that did nothing to deal with the real problems of health care – excessive administration expenses because there is no single payer; malpractice litigation resulting from a huge number of needless medical procedures; a piece-work system for paying for medical services; and government subsidization of drug companies.
    The ironic thing about the Republican victory is that it will result in the repeal of Obamacare, thus saving it from falling on its own as the costs of insurance keep rising because of adverse selection. [“Adverse selection” can be defined as strategic behavior by the more informed partner in a contract against the interest of the less informed partner(s). In the health insurance field, this manifests itself through healthy people choosing managed care and less healthy people choosing more generous plans.]

Illegal immigration, a major problem, is simply a subsidy for the rich. Illegal immigrants keep down wages for low-skilled work. If we did not have 11 million illegal immigrants, employers would have to raise wages to get employees to do back-breaking work that immigrants are willing to do for low wages. That development would do more to improve the incomes of the semi-working class than any change in the minimum wage will ever do. Of course, it would mean that all of us would pay higher prices for goods and services. So what?
    A fundamental demographic reality, which environmentalists understand, is that we do not need more people in this country. Our resources – particularly in the West – are being tapped out. Eighty percent of the world’s population would like to migrate to the U.S. We don’t need them and we cannot take them. That does not mean that they are criminals, rapists, etc. (although obviously some of them are). The real point is that we don’t need them, and the people in this country do not want them. Hence Trump.

One main problem of the elite is its focus on political correctness. Thus, the Obama administration refuses to use the term “radical Islamists” even though that is what we are dealing with. To use the term is to say that these people represent a minority of Muslims (they are “deplorables” in the Muslim population, if I may borrow a term from Hillary – a term that certainly epitomized her “eliteness” mentality). The reality is that treating Muslims as a disparate group (as is done in Europe) is simply to feed Islamic radicalism. The Paris bombers in Europe were able to hide out for months in the Muslim communities there. The New York City bomber here was found within a couple of days.
    Of course, one of the centers of political correctness is Yale University, which is starting to behave like the Russian Politburo in removing names because the individuals named are deemed to be in the wrong under today’s standards. My view is that if someone is so offended by the name of Calhoun College that he or she is humiliated, maybe that person should go elsewhere. [This residential college is named for US Vice President John C. Calhoun, an 1804 graduate of Yale College and an advocate of slave-holding and states’ rights. –Wikipedia]
    As Harry Truman said, “If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.” Trump does not give a shit about political correctness, which is one of his traits that many people find appealing.

Copyright © 2016 by James T. Carney


  1. Well written, James. Do you feel like a salmon swimming against the current?

  2. As democrats, we had little choice about Hillary. But the republicans had a wide open field and Trump was the best they could give us. I do agree with you that the Dems. need to shut up for now. I predict Trump well be turning to the Democrats for help within 6 months. The one thing that Washington DC does not like is someone they cannot control. Pence is the insider, and the man the Reps. want in the White House. Look for them to impeach Trump before his first year is over.

  3. A good analysis that doesn't spew hate rhetoric and bigotry in my opinion. Indeed, well written James.

  4. There are many reasons I did not want Hillary to run for President. One she was to close to Wall Street, and then there was Bill. But as far as the e-mails go and her so called lying---that is just so much bullshit. Trump's record for honest deals is nowhere to be found. As far as character---Bill and Trump run a close race, but Bill wasn't running and I'm sure you may hate him---I repeat, he wasn't running. I do not or didn't except Bill's conduct so why is it that Trump gets a pass? A pass by the way from the very people that pulled out their Bibles and beat their chest, crying sinner, sinner over Bill's crap. We had two bad candidates and America picked the worse of the two. I believe you will end up regretting that choice more than I will, Jim.

  5. I voted against Trump because he is a miserable excuse for a human being. However, I cannot accept Ed's whitewash of Hillary. The email scandal is not bull shit. What you saw there was a typical exercise in Clintonism. First is the effort to skate the law in order to keep things secret. Then, when things leak out, there is an extensive effort to cover up including the absurd claim that Hillary knew so little about how to handle emails that having two computers/phones was beyond her intellectual capacity. Then when the cover up is discredited, the blame is attached to some nefarious third party such as the vast right wing conspiracy or in this case the FBI Director who went from an angel who refused to prosecute Hilary to a villain who thought he had an obligation to tell Congress that in searching the computer of a sexual pervert who was the ex-husband of Hillary's closest confidant, he found hundreds of thousands of emails from Hilary. Now, no one asks how do these emails - which are certain government related and some of which are classified - end up in the computer of someone who has no position in the government. Ed, I don't blame Hillary for Bill's misdeeds - I blame her for her own which display the central premise of Clintonism: that they are above the law because they are on the side of the angels. America may have picked the worse of the two but there was little to choose between the two of them.

    1. Jim I don't disagree that what she did with the e-mails was not stupid. The Clintons do stupid things because they are smart enough to get away with it. Not unlike not paying your taxes, they seem to know where the line is and they keep walking right up to it. The FBI found there was not enough to charge her and the committee was not able to bring charges. While I believe someone that makes the money Trump has made and doesn't pay taxes should go to jail; he too knows where the line is. And while we may not like it, playing the system is not against the law. If it were, our jails would be full of white collared crooks instead of people of color.

  6. Jim, in your reply to Ed's comments you state that you "voted against Trump because he is a miserable excuse for a human being." But by voting for whomever you did vote for (not Clinton either), you effectively voted against her as well. And so did the millions and millions of eligible voters who didn't vote because they, like you, didn't like either of the two major candidates. If any of them also felt, as you do, that "there was little to choose between the two of them," then they, as well as you, are wrong. The Supreme Court appointment is by itself a huge difference. I can't imagine that you think otherwise. QED.
        And you acknowledge that Clinton was a better choice – or, in your words, "less bad" – than Trump. We of course don't know how many of the eligible voters who didn't cast a ballot at all (because they didn't like either candidate), nevertheless felt the same way you did: they were less repelled by Clinton than by Trump.
        American citizens bear the responsibility for the election of Donald Trump – not only those who voted for him under the illusion that he would help them, but also those who "voted against" both him and her, and those who didn't vote at all. The latter make up about 42% of eligible voters, over 95 million citizens.

  7. My opinion nor anyone else's opinion will change anything now. The snow ball is rolling down the mountain and there is no stopping it. All we can do is hope there is something left once it hits the bottom. There is the fact that Trump looks after Trump above all else and he has not forgotten how the Republican leadership treated him. We can hope for an eternal war in which nothing changes for four years or a big change in two years.