SCOTUS Insanity

There are many cases where the Supreme Court has exercised their right to “interpret” our Founder’s Constitution to the detriment of our culture and common sense, and one of those cases reflects the current debate over the burning of the American flag.
The Supremes in Texas v. Johnson, 491 U.S. 397 (1989); United States v. Eichman, 496 U.S. 310 (1990) invented something called “symbolic speech” which common sense calls “action.”

The Founders didn’t understand “speech” to be anything but utterances and writing. It took the Supremes about 210 years to divine speech to include actions.

Perhaps a newly constituted SCOTUS toward the end of Trump’s first term can reduce the insanity of the previous Court, and address Wickard v. Filburn, 317 U.S. 111 (1942) as well.

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Who is Geert Wilders?

Well, he is the Dutch equivalent to Nigel Farage, who engineered BREXIT, but the Dutch are holding a trial on Geert because he publicly said that the Dutch had too many Moroccans, and that the Moroccan populations were causing a disproportionate number of crimes.

You see, saying the truth can get you fined, or worse in the Netherlands, and actually in Britain as well. Britain has banned Geert, and his trial is well underway in the Netherlands.

Free speech isn’t free in Europe! It hardly exists.

Now here is the rub: Geert Wilders is the head of the PVV Party, the Populist political party of the Netherlands, and that party was in about a 20 to 25% of the population before his trial. With his trial, the popularity of the PVV party has almost become a majority!

Britain talked about banning Trump from entering Britain, but with the election, Britain decided not to ban. But they did ban Geert, and what will they do if he becomes the head of the Dutch government!

All of Europe is undergoing a populist revolution with gains in France, Germany, Austria, Italy, Netherland and others. BREXIT was not predicted the day before it passed, Trump was not predicted before he won, and other strange things may fall in the next few years that will change the political map.

Castro

He tried firing squads, he tried sending academics into the sugar fields, he tried neighborhood snitches, he tried arresting journalists, he tried sending armies into Africa and South America to support Communism, he tried supporting Hugo Chavez/Maduro, he tried isolating his people from the outside world…but he failed.
His People revered him even in poverty, remembering that they were dirt poor under Batista, but the rich were really rich. The revolution didn’t make the poor any richer, but they loved seeing the rich made poorer. This is the eventual goal of Democratic Party wing under Sanders. 

Uniform poverty!

Now the liberals will tell you that the reason for Cuban poverty was the US embargo, but that claim can be dismissed easily: Canada had no embargo! Europe had no embargo, and those economic entities are hardly chopped liver!

Waiting!

There is so little news these days, as the nation comes to grips with a new, and untested administration.
Initial indications are that Trump is still expending time and energy — both of which are in short supply — to yell at the media. Not that the media doesn’t need some yelling, but it can more easily be done by surrogates. One can only think that Trump was taking a page from baseball players who question umpire calls, hoping to get marginal calls in the future.

Trump has lived in NYC all of his life, he knows the Times and their biases. They are not going to change. At least for some time, the Times — like most of us — is in denial. I don’t think Trump thought he would win, although his data cruncher says HE thought Trump would win.

Who knows the truth? Truth is elastic in politics.

Too bad. There are few more areas where truth is more needed.

One unforced error that perfectly demonstrates Trump’s inexperience, and a perfect example of why his staff needs to take his Twitter account account away, and that was Trump’s comment about who he would welcome as Ambassador from Great Britain. I can just see the frost on the British reply that they would determine who their Ambassador would be. 

Oooops

I Hope, I Hope, I hope

While I am impressed with the announced Trump Cabinet appointments, the several people under consideration for future appointments impress me more: General Mattis for SecDef, Michelle Rhee for Education, and Mitt Romney for SecState. Those are power players even stronger than one could hope for.
The Romney/Mattis combination an international carrot and stick of enormous proportions, should they get the job. Michelle Rhee has led the public discussion on education reform for more than a decade. 

I hope, I hope, I hope

Aleppo 

Aleppo is a good example of how TV influences our policy. 
A century ago, or even half that, these atrocities existed but now they are in our living room. This triggers our natural wish to provide assistance.

The current feckless administration supported the humanitarian convoy filled with food and medical assistance for the 250,000 starving Syrians — but the convoy was attacked and destroyed, probably by Russians.

When there is a “ceasefire” the fire does not cease, and the corridors designated for the civilians to leave the besieged city are under sniper fire so no civilians can flee. Of course the US could run a convoy of supplies to the city, and challenge anyone to stop them, with US air power overhead, but this wussified administration would never consider doing that.

Will a Trump administration undertake it? 

Last Week

It’s time to look at the last week from my perspective.
I didn’t vote for either Trump or Clinton, so I didn’t get too excited or depressed by the surprising results. I really expected Clinton to win because I trusted the media — Reuters assured me there was a 90% chance of Clinton winning.

“By Maurice Tamman | NEW YORK

With hours to go before Americans vote, Democrat Hillary Clinton has about a 90 percent chance of defeating Republican Donald Trump in the race for the White House, according to the final Reuters/Ipsos States of the Nation project.”

I was never an official member on the #NEVERTRUMP group, but I was at least an Auxiliary Member. I am still a non believer, awaiting results.

Since the election there have been two main stories — the kids in the streets and the Cabinet. Everything in the Cabinet discussion is pure speculation. The kids in the streets is very much real, and the Republicans should encourage them because it will put more independents in the “R” column.

Meanwhile, Republicans are reading tea leaves trying to divine the direction of the Trump presidency. Who is in, who is out? Who will have which Cabinet positions — it’s all speculation and it is, as usual, those who know don’t talk, and those who talk don’t know. Anyone who talked would be off the Trump Team.

(It must have galled De Blasio, the New York City Mayor to have to go to the Trump Tower and kiss the Trump ring! Those two do not like each other one bit.)

My Libertarian publication (Reason Magazine) weighed in on the Trump win:

“If there is an advantage to electing a preening, petty, thin-skinned, whiny, vindictive, vacuous, mendacious, boorish bully to that office, it may be that he prompts a reconsideration of the absurd hopes and cultish veneration that surround the presidency. Perhaps a ridiculous President Donald J. Trump will encourage Americans to take the presidency less seriously.”

No, “If there is an advantage to electing a preening, petty, thin-skinned, whiny, vindictive, vacuous, mendacious, boorish bully to that office” it is that his election put a nail in the Clinton dynasty’s metaphorical coffin