For the political elite, President Trump’s inauguration was like a party from hell. First there was the inaugural speech, in which Trump skewered “a small group in our nation’s capital” who have prospered at the expense of heartland America. His election was more than a routine contest between parties, he said; it was a movement, and “at the center of this movement is a crucial conviction, that a nation exists to serve its citizens.” “From this day forward,” he roared, “it’s going to be America first, America first.”
Then there was the inaugural parade, with the military ensembles; the police and veterans’ groups; the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts, the bands from Olivet Nazarene University and Texas State; the high schoolers from Indianapolis and Frankfort, West Virginia; the Mid America Cowgirls Rodeo Drill Team; and, not least of all, the Rural Tractor Brigade.
Where was Beyoncé, Michelle’s “role model” for her girls? (Those inured to vulgarity may wish to check out her performance of “Formation,” not what I’d want my daughter, if I had a daughter, to be doing.) Where were Usher and Alicia Keys, with their chart-topping “My Boo,” an insipid testament to hormones and doing just about anything you want? Where was the rhetoric of “us” and “them,” designed to wrench the country further apart and drive minority turnout in future elections? (There was plenty of that in Charles Schumer’s mind-numbing introduction of Justice Roberts, but Trump had nothing to do with that.)
Life is filled with ironies, telling stories lurking below the surface of consciousness, surfacing in moments of epiphany.
So it is with The Resistance.
The Resistance is the rag-tag assemblage of Democrats, leftists, socialists, feminists who fancy themselves all that stands in the way of the fascistic dreams of President Donald Trump.
They see Trump as the embodiment of Hitler and so they are the Resistance.
We saw them out in force the day of inauguration harassing people on their way to the event. We saw them chanting their slogans. We saw them hurling abuse at Trump supporters. And we saw them destroying public and private property.
(In fact, police arrested more than 200 rioters on Friday and those charged with rioting face 10 years in prison.)
The next day we saw half a million women descend upon Washington for the Women’s March and reportedly 2.5 million women take to the streets across the West to protest Trump’s presidency.
It was as, Piers Morgan so aptly put, a gigantic hissy fit.
Now, the newly elected president has done little yet to warrant this level of opposition, but it is the promise (or threat) of what he proposes that sends shivers down their spines.
President Trump will upend the New World Order which holds that national interests should be subordinate to global interests, that borders are lines on a map, that the developed nations owe the less developed nations reparations because the success of the former came at the expense of the latter, that the global economy must be managed and controlled in the name of the environment.
Or as Gloria Steinem put it poetically, talking about the Women’s March:
“We are here and around the world for a deep democracy that says we will not be quiet, we will not be controlled, we will work for a world in which all countries are connected. God may be in the details, but the goddess is in connections.”
The New World Order has been in the making for decades with like-minded politicians in countries across the West wholly embracing the ideals of globalism. It is the reason the European Union exists. It is the reason the IPCC exists. The goal is always the same: a socialist global authority that ultimately controls nations.
The fight against climate change was to be the vehicle carrying us to the socialist utopia, with the United Nations in the driver’s seat, because to save the planet from CO2 emissions meant that governments had to take control of their economies, choosing who would win and who would lose and handing over hundreds of billions of dollars to the UN and less developed countries.
Globalization allowed China to rapidly develop its economy at the expense of the West, particularly the United States which lost millions of manufacturing jobs and saw massive increases in its trade imbalance.
China’s rapid growth began when Republican President George Bush granted that country favored nation trading status. That made it safe for corporations to move manufacturing operations to China.
Under the Democrats, America embraced the UN’s climate change programs to such an extent that CO2 was declared a pollutant. That gave the Environmental Protection Agency license to wage war on producers and industry alike.
Now, many Americans resisted all of these developments. Tea Party Republicans fought a rear-guard war against President Barrack Obama for eight years. But it wasn’t until Trump threw his hat into the GOP primaries that a majority of Republicans knew they had a champion.
Trump brought the rank and file together on a promise he would essentially undo all the policies that had led to the destruction of the working and middle classes. National interests would be upheld. Borders would be protected. Interventionism would end. Security would be paramount. The Constitution would be revered. It was old fashioned nationalism and patriotism.
In other words, Trump was the spearhead of the true resistance.
That’s the message he took on the campaign trail and it won him the election.
It was not force that propelled Trump to victory. There were no brown shirts descending upon the rallies of opponents. There was no rioting. There was no intimidation. No buildings were set ablaze by his supporters. No businesses were looted. No streets were blocked.
No, this great debate which Trump started was settled peacefully in polling stations across America.
So for the Democrats and their globalist supporters to claim today they are the Resistance is ludicrous. It is they who have tried to intimidate people. It is they who are the bullies. It is they who employ the tactics of fascists.
Whenever The New York Times or some other mainstream news outlet holds itself out as a paragon of professional journalism – by wagging a finger at some pro-Trump “fake news” or some Internet “conspiracy theory” – I cringe at the self-delusion and hypocrisy.
No one hates fake news and fact-free conspiracy theories more than I do, but the sad truth is that the mainstream press has opened the door to such fantasies by losing the confidence of the American people and becoming little more than the mouthpiece for the Establishment, which spins its own self-serving narratives and tells its own lies.
Rather than acting as a watchdog against these deceptions, the Times and its mainstream fellow-travelers have transformed themselves into little more than the Establishment’s apologists and propagandists.
If Iraq is the “enemy,” we are told wild tales about how Iraq’s non-existent WMD is a danger to us all. If Syria is in Washington’s crosshairs, we are given a one-sided account of what’s happening there, black hats for the “regime” and white hats for the “rebels”?
If the State Department is backing a coup in Ukraine to oust an elected leader, we are regaled with tales of his corruption and how overthrowing a democratically chosen leader is somehow “democracy promotion.” Currently, we are getting uncritical stenography on every conceivable charge that the U.S. government lodges against Russia.
Yet, while this crisis in American journalism has grown more severe in recent years, the pattern is not entirely new. It is reflected in how the mainstream media has missed many of the most significant news stories of modern history and has, more often than not, been an obstacle to getting at the truth.
Then, if the evidence finally becomes so overwhelming that continued denials are no longer tenable, the mainstream media tries to reclaim its tattered credibility by seizing on some new tidbit of evidence and declaring that all that went before were just rumors but now we can take the long whispered story seriously — because the Times says so.
It cannot be merely coincidental that the incomes and wealth of the top 5% have pulled away from the stagnating 95% in the 25 years dominated by neocon-neoliberalism.
One unexamined narrative I keep hearing is: “OK, so neocon-neoliberalism was less than ideal, but Trump could be much worse.” Let’s start by asking: would Syrian civilians agree with this assessment? The basic idea in the “OK, so neocon-neoliberalism was less than ideal, but Trump could be much worse” narrative is that the modest problems created by neocon-neoliberalism will pale next to what Trump will do, implying jackbooted Waffen SS troops will soon be marching through America on Trump’s orders.
This narrative is yet another example of American parochialism: since neocon-neoliberalism didn’t cause American cities to be bombed and its institutions demolished, it’s really not that bad.
Try telling that to the Iraqis, Libyans and Syrians who have been on the receiving end of neocon-neoliberalism policies. The reality is very unpleasant: for those targeted by America’s neocon-neoliberalism, nothing worse is imaginable, because the worst has already happened.
President Donald Trump gave a masterful inaugural speech that resonated with the people who voted for him and for whom he is a beacon of hope.
Trump laid down the law and underlined why he won:
“Today’s ceremony, however, has very special meaning because today we are not merely transferring power from one administration to another – but transferring it from Washington DC and giving it back to you the 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. While they have celebrated there has been 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 today.”
Trump let it be known that he holds both parties and past presidents responsible for the mess in which America finds itself today. Tough words, but they needed to be spoken.
That’s why he pointedly drew attention to the problems Americans face – from the loss of jobs to the carnage in many inner cities.
And so he promises to deliver:
Safe schools and neighborhoods
Affordable health care
Fair trade policies
Sane foreign policy
In making these promises, Trump cuts across ideological lines. He will not please conservative purists, nor will he please liberal purists either. But he stands a good chance of pleasing the American people who are not driven by ideology.
The new president is facing an incredibly rough couple of years. He needs to grow the economy by at least four per cent per year and create 25 million jobs to make a dent in the deficit and ultimately the $20 trillion accumulated debt.
It can be done. He is a businessman and his cabinet is filled with businessmen. They know what to do.
If Trump can secure a few big victories earlier on, he will win over his detractors. He deserves a chance to try.
After all, Americans gave Barack Obama two chances to keep his promises and still he failed.
I really don’t know what the Left truly believes is going to happen the day after Donald Trump is sworn in as President.
Do they believe that people will be rounded up and shipped off to concentration camps?
To judge by the comments on social media, it is literally the end of the world.
I can appreciate the sorrow at losing an election. No one likes to lose. It hurts. I get it. But try and be a gracious loser.
After all, Trump was elected fair and square. He gained the most electoral votes and that is how presidents are elected.
Those who seek to delegitimize his victory argue that he didn’t win the popular vote or that he was aided by Russian hackers.
It’s all nonsense. Presidential elections are not a national popularity contest. It’s 50 popularity contests. A candidate has to win in a sufficient number of states to earn the 270 electoral votes to win the election.
Hillary Clinton forgot that. The media forgot that. The pollsters forgot that. The only one who didn’t forget that was Trump.
That’s why he was stumping and holding rally after rally in key states. That is where he won.
Clinton won big in California and New York. That’s it. California is what gives her the edge in the popular vote.
Big deal. It just doesn’t matter. It’s not how the race is won.
As for the role of the Russians, it was non-existent. No evidence, not a single shred of evidence has been presented that says the Russians hacked the DNC email servers or the account of John Podesta. There is nothing. Nada. Zip. Zero. If there was, you can bet your bottom dollar we would have heard about it. All we have are assertions. Nothing more.
So Trump’s presidency is legitimate. There are no ifs, ands or buts. He is president. Period.
There is nothing in Trump’s campaign, his speeches, his track record that suggests in any way, shape or form that he will be some sort of crazy, dictatorial president.
If anything the last few weeks have shown his priority is on creating jobs and reaching out to people who can help rejuvenate the crumbling inner cities of America.
Obamacare will be replaced with something better and more affordable.
Existing laws governing immigration and security will now be enforced.
Parents are going to get some choice in how their children are educated.
US allies will be asked to pull their weight in NATO.
A rapprochement with Russia will be attempted.
There will probably be extensive efforts made at deregulation.
Energy resources will be developed.
And there will be less government involvement in people’s lives.
None of this is radical and none of it threatens anyone’s lifestyle or ability to participate in American society.
So grow up. Quit your bitching. Be part of the solution and not part of the problem.
Blaming Venezuela’s spiraling inflation on “economic war and mafia attacks,” Hugo Chavez’s successor, socialist President Nicolas Maduro has raised the nation’s minimum wage for the fifth time in a year. The whopping 50 percent wage hike raises the monthly wage to between $12 and $60, in U.S. terms, depending on whether one goes by the state-controlled or the more accurate black-market exchange rate.
No matter what, though, the measure will provide no relief given Venezuela’s projected 1,600 percent inflation rate.
Decades of Chavez-ism have finally demonstrated Margaret Thatcher’s dictum: Socialists “always run out of other people’s money.” Venezuela’s paper money has lost so much value that it is no longer counted at the point of purchase. It’s weighed.
The once-affluent and still oil-rich nation came to this because of a long train of abuses, missteps and shortsighted moves typical of socialist regimes. These began when Venezuela nationalized its oil industry in 1976. The pretext for nationalization was to take profit from capitalists and return it to the people. But when the government seized the oil companies, it removed the profit incentive people had to develop and maintain the physical apparatus that brings oil to market. Predictably, everything has fallen into disrepair.
It also removed another equally important force: the loss incentive.
On Jan. 17, the CBC National aired a mini-documentary on the rise of white nationalism in the aftermath of the election of Donald Trump, and I just had to watch. I wanted to see what research the MotherCorp had done. What was going to be the angle?
As it turned out, there was virtually no research. There were no statistics presented. There were no membership numbers. There was hardly any substantial presentation. This was basically a story about Richard Spencer.
Now, most people do not know who Richard Spencer or what the alt-right is, but he is the head of the National Policy Institute, which is “an independent organization dedicated to the heritage, identity, and future of people of European descent in the United States, and around the world.”
In other words, Richard Spencer is a white nationalist.
What drew media attention to Spencer was his support of Donald Trump and a video in which Spencer gave the Nazi salute and shouted “Heil Trump.”
That meeting drew a lot media attention because the news media like to either characterize Trump as a racist or someone who enables racists.
Spencer and his beliefs seem made to measure.
The thing is Trump has denounced Spencer and racism repeatedly.
“I condemn them. I disavow, and I condemn,” Trump said in a New York Times interview in New York on Nov 21, adding “I don’t want to energize the group. I’m not looking to energize them. I don’t want to energize the group, and I disavow the group.”
Trump said his goal was “to bring the country together.”
The president-elect reiterated his objections to the group and again disavowed them in an ABC interview with Lesley Stahl.
And he’s disavowed them in numerous speeches during the campaign.
In fact, Trump’s forceful denunciations have disappointed Spencer and his few followers, leaving them feeling dejected and abandoned.
This is all old news. It was a tempest in a teapot in November and it is absolutely pointless today.
Trump has no more control over those who support him than outgoing President Barack Obama does.
I have yet to see a documentary from the CBC on Obama’s role in encouraging violence against police officers.
So why bring up Spencer two days before Trump’s inauguration?
Spencer is irrelevant. He has very few supporters. There were a mere 14 commentators on his Reddit channel.
All the CBC succeeded in doing was falsely linking Spencer to Trump when no such link has been shown or proven.
It was just more fake news and yet another sad day for television journalism.
The federal Liberal government plans to impose a national coal phase-out, based on the same faulty arguments used in Ontario — namely that such a move will yield significant environmental benefits and reduce health-care costs. One problem: those arguments never made sense, and now with the Ontario phase-out complete, we can verify not only that they were invalid but that the Ontario government knew it.
Together with Fraser Institute economist Elmira Aliakbari, I just published a study on the coal phase-out in Ontario and its effects on air pollution over the 2002–14 interval. Our expectation was that we would find very little evidence for pollution reductions associated with eliminating coal. This expectation arose from two considerations.
First, ample data at the time showed that coal use had little effect on Ontario air quality. Environment Canada’s emissions inventories showed that the Ontario power generation sector was responsible for only a tiny fraction (about one per cent) of provincial particulate emissions, a common measure of air pollution.
“Insanity is doing the same thing, over and over again, but expecting different results.”
That quote has been attributed to Albert Einstein, but apparently that’s a tenuous connection and there is actually a fairly fierce debate as to who actually coined it.
It doesn’t really matter who said it first. What does matter is that it so accurately sums up what is wrong with so much of government thinking on CO2 emissions.
Let’s leave aside the issue of whether CO2 is actually good or bad for the climate. The United Nations and a large number of governments have concluded that it is. So let’s assume they’re right for the moment.
If CO2 is bad for the environment, then clearly we must do everything we can to reduce its emission and, perhaps, even eliminate emissions altogether.
That is the rationale behind the push for renewable energy. Wind and the sun, the argument goes, can eventually supply all the energy we’ll ever need and reduce CO2 emissions.
This is actually a testable assertion. Enough countries have been trying to reduce CO2 emissions for decades now, so we can see how they have fared.
Germany has been the leading European country behind the push to reduce emissions and has spent more than anyone on reducing CO2 emissions by developing renewable energy resources. If any country should have seen gains in this area, it is surely Germany. So how has well has it fared?
Germany’s renewable energy program, as the Environmental Progress website shows, has been an abysmal failure. CO2 emissions actually increased from 2015 to 2016., despite the fact that it added 10 per cent more wind turbine capacity and 2.5 per cent more solar panels over the same time period. It generated less than one per cent more electricity from wind and one per cent less from solar.
This is the second year in a row that emissions have increased and the reasons are two-fold. One, the country closed one of its nuclear plants. Two, the country received less sunshine and wind in 2015 and 2016.
As climate skeptics are fond of saying, the wind doesn’t always blow and the sun doesn’t always shine. The erratic nature of wind and solar power means that you cannot reasonably expect turbines and panels to produce on a consistent basis.
In other words, you can increase your wind and solar capacity by 100 per cent and still only get a marginal increase in electrical output. The wind doesn’t always blow and the sun doesn’t always shine.
The trouble is that the cost of renewable energy development is staggering. Billions and billions of Euros have been spent by Germany and CO2 emissions have increased.
Not only that, but German consumers are now paying more for electricity than they did before. Prices have risen by close to 50 per cent over the course of the past decade.
Now, most people would not mind paying more for electricity if the additional costs actually accomplished the stated purpose – reduce CO2 emissions. But I can’t imagine anyone is happy to be paying more while CO2 emissions are going up.
This is where the insanity quote comes into play. We have the example of Germany’s failure at hand and what are we doing in Canada? Unbelievably we are proposing to do exactly the same thing, but are expecting different results.