Category Archive 'Republicans'
11 Nov 2017

Tax Cut

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24 Oct 2017

Kurt Schlichter Nukes George W. Bush and the Anti-Trump GOP Establishment

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George W. Bush attacks Trump for promoting “bigotry and falsehoods.”

Kurt Schlichter responds to the GWB speech of four days ago, in which the former president broke his long political silence… to attack a Republican Administration.

All human institutions are essentially a reboot of high school, and within the political scene the Never Trumpers are convinced that they are the cool kids despite being the chess club of American politics. No, they aren’t the cool kids. They’re geeks, they haven’t won a tournament in years and, more importantly, they’re the freaking chess club.

In contrast, we normals are just that, the members of the student body who have lives and after-school jobs and girlfriends and who don’t care about the dorks padding their resume with student body presidencies or, in this case, jobs at the Eagle Liberty Council for Freedom. Except now we normals have been forced to pay attention because the would-be in-crowd has so totally screwed things up that there’s no real choice but get involved in campus activities and burn down the whole damn schoolhouse. …

What have these guys achieved? The clowns they support in Congress can’t even repeal Obamacare. …

We normals are sick of being looked down upon and exploited by a bunch of people who, if this was a movie, would be played by James Spader – except trainwreck 2017 James Spader, not louche/suave 1986 James Spader. I guess that makes Bill Kristol the Nepo-Con Duckie, if Duckie was a less-cool, backstabbing deep-state-loving weasel trying to sell Molly Ringwald a cabin on one of his crappy cruises.

In place of trying to earn respect by demonstrating competence, they’ve chosen to try to diss us into submission. George W. Bush decided to go all Mean Girls in a speech that insulted his (former) supporters while delighting the left, and therefore the Never Trumpers. Now, if you read W’s speech on paper, every word of it about bigotry being bad is true. But you give speeches in context, and here the context is decades of leftists and their media poodles falsely accusing the normals of racism and bigotry. So when W adopted that language, he also knowingly or negligently adopted that narrative; the former newspaper and current brochure known as the L.A. Times crowed: “In stunning attack, George W. Bush rebukes Trump, suggesting he promotes falsehoods and prejudice.”

And so, of course, the supporters of this Trump guy are therefore…. Well, you get the picture. That is, if you’re not being willfully obtuse, like the Fredocons, who were delighted that Bush decided to break his 16 years of super-principled silence in the face of liberal attacks to slander the very people who had voted for him and defended him. If being “principled” means letting liberals use you like a slit trench then trashing the people who had your back to please the people using you like a slit trench, you can keep your damned principles.

RTWT

Scathing, but deserved.

15 Jun 2017

Conspiracy of Silence

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Thomas Lifson marvels at the conspiracy of silence on the part of Republicans which has allowed the MSM to fabricate and keep running for months coverage of a completely imaginary story involving supposititious collusion with Russia for which no evidence whatsoever has been identified.

The stunning truth is that the American political and media establishment allowed a phony story – that they knew was phony — to dominate our political discourse for months. When James Comey testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee last week, he revealed that he had informed many important Congressional leaders that there was no investigation of President Trump and the Russians underway, even as MSNBC, CNN, The New York Times, and the Washington Post daily carried stories alluding to an imaginary investigation.

None of these informed leaders spoke out! They allowed a make-believe tale intended to harm the legitimacy and therefore political power of President Trump to dominate mindshare in the nation’s collective political conversation. …

The American people were played as patsies, their attention diverted to a fantasy that had — and still has — no evidence whatsoever of its existence. That fantasy was propounded for political reasons, and used to subvert the outcome of a democratic election.

And except for Senator Grassley, the entire roster of congressional establishment held its tongues.

28 Mar 2017

Trump, the last Rockefeller Republican

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Back in the 1960s, young conservatives used to sing a parody of “Rock of Ages” that, in part, went:

“Rockefeller’s not for me,
He is anti-GOP.
He is for the Welfare State,
And he’s had more than one mate.”

Throughout the 2016 Presidential Campaign, theoretically-inclined Americans struggled to identify exactly where Donald Trump belonged on the scale of ideology.

Trump had no political record. And Trump’s combination of positions, including Nativism, Protectionism, along with promises to repeal Obamacare, yet at the same time, “take care of everybody” had little to do with either conventional liberalism or conservativism.

Last week’s Obamacare Repeal-and-Replace effort failed because the small, actually seriously principled portion of House Republicans, the Freedom Caucus, declined to follow Trump’s leadership, when that leadership insisted on retaining the socialist heart of Barack Obama’s great leap forward into conformity with the Bismarkian model of National Health Care embraced by so many European and Asian countries.

Just yesterday, I happened to catch Fox News’ Chris Wallace referring with Establishment disdain to the Freedom Caucus’s insistence on removing key Obamacare features such as universal coverage including the subsidizing of health insurance for the elderly and ill by an insurance purchase requirement for the healthy and young.

Last week’s breakdown of Republican solidarity exposed the ideological fault line dividing Donald Trump (and his Nationalist Alt-Right inner circle) and the mainstream GOP. Serious, ideologically-principled Republicans are still Goldwater Republicans, determined to fight for government consistent with the ideals and principles of the founders, firmly resistant to Progressive appeals to sentimentality, Populism, and the example of European countries.

Donald Trump lacks Nelson Rockefeller’s Dartmouth polish and patrician accent, but we begin to see revealed the basic similarities. Like Rockefeller, Trump is a divorcée and a flagrant sexual opportunist, utterly indifferent to conventional Middle American sexual morality. Trump has the advantage of operating decades further along in the progressive decline of Religion and morality in the United States. Back in the 1960s, a divorced man was looked upon as an untrustworthy oath-breaker and loose-liver, unfit for national office. By 1980, when Ronald Reagan (who had been long divorced) ran, it was a non-issue. Last Fall, Trump proved that, in the 21st Century, a fellow on the record with having approximately the same sort of approach to romance as Hugh Hefner, would have little difficulty brushing off even feminist indignation and could easily be elected.

Last week’s events, on the positive side, confirmed again that Donald Trump is a man of his word. He promised a great and beautiful replacement of Obamacare bill that would cover everyone and he attempted to ram that through. On the negative side, all this confirms that Donald Trump has no ideological aversion to the Welfare State and no theoretical commitment to stopping, or turning back, the Left’s step-by-step march toward universal socialism. Trump is, at best, a “Me Too, But a Little Less” Republican in the style of Eisenhower. More accurately, in the combative New York-style of the late Nelson Rockefeller.

Like Rockefeller, Trump is (mostly) pro-business, though he will expect business to play ball with government. Like Rockefeller, Trump is a law-and-order Republican. Trump means to enforce immigration laws. He will continue to wage the War on Drugs. He will continue to lock ’em up, and will probably increase sentences at some point. Like Rockefeller, Trump will devote a serious effort to making Big Government more efficient and more economical, thus enabling the Welfare State to avoid longer its inevitable bankruptcy.

In the political contest for the Presidency, Trump went from triumph to triumph. Trump’s fidelity to his campaign promises, and his business-like style of going right to work and expecting results NOW, not next year or the year after, was refreshing and gave the opening months of his presidency a positive tone. Wall Street responded by booming.

Now, Trump has experienced his first real setback, his first political defeat. How Trump responds to this one will obviously have a major impact on the overall success of his presidency. If Trump simply sulks and blames conservatives for saving Obamacare, the same pattern of failure is bound to repeat itself. If Trump instead learns to compromise and goes back and puts together a renewed alliance with conservative Republicans, there is nothing stopping him from trying again and finally repealing and eradicating the legacy of Barack Obama from American life, and then moving forward more strongly than before to fulfill the rest of his promises and agenda.

He has already comfortably surpassed the political achievements of Nelson Rockefeller. Hopefully, Trump will avoid Rockefeller’s example of bitter progressive Republican animosity toward conservative Republicans and Rockefeller’s ultimately futile isolation.

13 Mar 2017

The Ring is Tempting and Corrupting

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12 Mar 2017

The Non-Ideological Obamacare Repeal

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Robert Tracinski explains why repealing Obamacare is such an uphill battle. When you replace Conservatism with Populist Nationalism, you’re lacking the necessary conviction to oppose the Welfare State.

If you want to know why Republicans have bogged down, notice one peculiar thing about the Obamacare debate so far. It’s not really a debate over Obamacare, it’s a debate over Medicaid. That’s because Obamacare mostly turned out to be a big expansion of Medicaid. The health insurance exchanges that were supposed to provide affordable private health insurance (under a government aegis) never really delivered. They were launched in a state of chaos and incompetence, and ended up mostly offering plans that are expensive yet still have high deductibles. Rather than massively expanding the number of people with private insurance, a lot of the effect of Obamacare was to wreck people’s existing health care plans and push them into new exchange plans.

Ah, but what about all those people the Democrats are claiming were newly covered under Obamacare? A lot of them—up to two-thirds, by some estimates—are people who were made newly eligible for a government health-care entitlement, Medicaid. But shoving people onto Medicaid is not exactly a great achievement, since it is widely acknowledged to be a lousy program.

Conservative health care wonk Avik Roy explains why: “[T]he program’s dysfunctional 1965 design makes it impossible for states to manage their Medicaid budgets without ratcheting down what they pay doctors to care for Medicaid enrollees. That, in turn, has led many doctors to stop accepting Medicaid patients, such that Medicaid enrollees don’t get the care they need.” Partly as a result, a test in Oregon found no difference in health outcomes between those with access to Medicaid and those without.

Then again, a massive expansion of Medicaid fits perfectly with the preferences of the welfare statist’s boosters: lousy free stuff from the government is better than good stuff you pay for yourself.

Yet notice this hits a big Republican weak spot, one I suspect Obamacare’s promoters knew about all along. Obamacare just boils down to an expansion of an old, existing, traditional government entitlement—and Republicans are lousy at rolling back traditional entitlements. …

Democrats create new entitlements, then Republicans reform them. Democrats get all the credit for showering us with benefits, and Republicans accept the role of the mean-spirited accountants who tell us we just can’t afford it. …

[As to the existing bill:] Pradheep Shanker sums it up nicely when he describes the Obamacare replacement bill as a piece of legislation with no ideological point of view.

    My biggest complaint about this bill is that there really is no governing philosophy in its writing. It neither pleases conservatives nor moderates. It makes half measures to increasing patient choice, but retains taxes such as the Cadillac tax, while at the same time maintaining the employer based health insurance system. It doesn’t maximize federal support for the poor, nor does it fully adopt the free market…. The muddle created by the GOP here makes it very difficult to make a sound, concise argument regarding specifically what their goal is.

That makes sense, in a way. It’s a bill with no governing philosophy for a party and a president who have no governing philosophy.

Read the whole thing.

09 Mar 2017

“Kill Obamacare and Give It a Closed Casket Funeral”

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Kurt Schlichter has a message for President Obama and the Congressional GOP leadership.

When Paul Ryan and his congressional clown car of alleged conservatives surprised us by just sort of dropping Obamacare Jr. on us, I wasn’t surprised to see them trip all over their Guccis during the utterly inept roll out. These nimrods couldn’t effectively communicate to Elizabeth Warren with smoke signals. But even I was shocked at how transcendently crappy their proposed Obamacare replacement is. Let me put it this way: the only thing that steaming pile of failure would be good for is as the key prop in a very specialized, niche German porno film.

Seriously, how many times do we have to tell you? Obamacare must die. Kill it dead – with fire!

When are you going to get it through your wonk spheres that we don’t want a government-led health care system that leaves the people who infest D.C. in charge? We don’t need a “plan” because 85 percent of us already have a plan – it’s called “Taking responsibility for supporting ourselves and our families like damn adults.”

Yeah, we really mean it when we say we want Obamacare gone. DOA. Kaput. Call it over to the mob boss’s house under the pretense that it’s going to be made, then shoot it through the face so its mother can’t give it an open coffin at the funeral.

Are you feelin’ us now?

25 Jan 2017

One Fine Day

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Democrat party socialist & dwarf Robert Reich put up a post on Facebook the other day which seemed to me to have a ring of truth.

I had breakfast recently with a friend who’s a former Republican member of Congress. Here’s what he said:

Him: Trump is no Republican. He’s just a big fat ego.

Me: Then why didn’t you speak out against him during the campaign?

Him: You kidding? I was surrounded by Trump voters. I’d have been shot.

Me: So what now? What are your former Republican colleagues going to do?

Him (smirking): They’ll play along for a while.

Me: A while?

Him: They’ll get as much as they want – tax cuts galore, deregulation, military buildup, slash all those poverty programs, and then get to work on Social Security and Medicare – and blame him. And he’s such a fool he’ll want to take credit for everything.

Me: And then what?

Him (laughing): They like Pence.

Me: What do you mean?

Him: Pence is their guy. They all think Trump is out of his mind.

Me: So what?

Him: So the moment Trump does something really dumb – steps over the line – violates the law in a big stupid clumsy way … and you know he will …

Me: They impeach him?

Him: You bet. They pull the trigger.

I think he’s right, that if (or, perhaps I should say: when) the Mainstream Media finally comes up with a scandal that sticks and Trump’s teflon covering breaks, the democrat wolfpack will close in, and they will be joined in bringing him down by plenty of Republicans.

But Reich seems to miss the point. Mike Pence operates as Presidential Insurance for Trump. Pence is a dyed-in-the-wool hardcore conservative. If they knock off Trump, from the left’s point of view, Pence might actually be worse.

10 Nov 2016

Victoria (on Twitter): “Republicans Right Now”

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lionking

08 Mar 2016

Megan McArdle: Trump Can’t Afford a Third-Party Campaign

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TrumpCabbage
2014: Donald Trump has announced he will build five new luxury apartment buildings in the heart of Manhattan with separate entrances and elevators for the poor tenants.

“I’m doing a great thing for this city. I didn’t have to put low-income units in my building. They should be happy they have it. There is no reason however for the normal wealthy people who pay their hard-earned money for a nice apartment to have to be bothered with the riff-raff.”

“They are on the third floor because our market research has shown that the poor are very unhygienic and don’t bathe regularly. They also have a tendency to boil cabbage for dinner. We didn’t want any of those odors wafting down into the lobby area.” (Note: This quotation is satire, not a real news item.)

And Megan McArdle says, Donald Trump can’t afford to run a Third-Party campaign and hasn’t got the ability to raise adequate funds elsewhere.

Donald Trump is not going to run as a third-party presidential candidate, even if he’s denied the Republican nomination. …

I’m not saying whether it would be a good idea for the GOP to deny him the nomination if he gets a plurality but not a majority of the delegates. But if it does, he won’t run third-party: He can’t afford it.

I direct you to his personal financial disclosure form, which said he had about $300 million in cash and marketable securities. That’s a lot of money! Stunningly, however, it is not enough money to run a major presidential campaign, which now clocks in at around $1 billion.

If Trump runs as a third-party candidate, the money to do so is going to have to come mostly out of his own pocket. The Republican Party’s traditional donors certainly aren’t going to help him. And so far, he’s shown no ability to raise the kind of staggering totals that, say, Bernie Sanders has managed to get from small donors. Trump’s campaign has raised just $25 million, of which only about $8 million comes from sources other than Donald J. Trump. He’s raised less in small contributions than Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio have.

02 Mar 2016

We Are Screwed

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Fates
Detail, John Melhuish Strudwick, A Golden Thread, 1885, Tate Gallery.

This ought to be a locked-in-concrete, dead-certain Republican year. America has a two party system, and Americans have an instinctive habit of giving both sides a turn at the presidency. Unless the incumbent walks on water like Ronald Reagan, after 8 years, the American public is hankering for a change and typically turns the ball over to the other team.

Beyond that, running against Hillary is a lot like running against the mean old woman of every Blues song, who moreover seems likely any day to be indicted.

But, along comes Trumplestiltskin.

In Scenario 1, Trump wins nearly all the rest of the primaries. The GOP caves and gives him the rest of the votes he needs for the nomination, and then the Party splits. Movement conservatives, the people who nominated Barry Goldwater and elected Ronald Reagan, and the intellectuals (very possibly including the Neocons), conceivably including socially-moderate, but snobbish, Country Club Republicans take a hike. In significant sectors of the Party, voting for The Donald is just infra dig, and some contend that even Hillary would make a more responsible first magistrate. Trump loses, Hillary becomes President.

Scenario 2, Trump has a ceiling, getting a plurality of delegates on the first ballot, but no majority. Conservatives and GOP Establishmentarians will die in the last ditch before nominating Donald. The knives come out. Trump delegates are pulled away on subsequent ballots, and a brokered convention nominates Cruz or Rubio. Donald J. Trump is no sportsman. He immediately forms a Third Party, and in the election proceeds to pull all the numbskulls and Reagan democrats away from the GOP candidate. Hillary becomes President.

There is no scenario 3.

The Trumpkins are going to say: This isn’t fair. We’re having a Revolution, and the rest of you are supposed to get on board. Donald Trump is our only hope of Change. Change you can believe in. And the rest of us, the sane people, are going to make little circle next to our temples with our index fingers at the idea of turning all the power of the Presidency over to a totally-unprincipled, egomanaical airhead with the morals and manners of the most spoiled rich kid in the entire country. Some of us actually know what happened when they made Gaius Julius Caesar Augustus Germanicus, nicknamed “Caligula” (“Little Boots”) by the Army, Emperor. It was not pretty.

29 Oct 2015

My Favorite Moment in Last Night’s GOP Debate

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Tweet101

Hat tip to Stephen Green.

06 Sep 2015

Congress Can Kill Obama’s Iran Deal (But It Won’t)

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ObamaDust

Andrew McCarthy, in NR, explains that, not only can the Republican majority in Congress stop Barack Obama’s Iran Treaty, on the basis of the terms of last April’s Constitution-reversing Corker Bill, Congress is obliged to.

While maddening, the Corker bill is not an abject congressional surrender to Obama and Tehran. It is a conditional surrender. It would grant Obama grudging congressional endorsement of the deal in the absence of a now unattainable veto-proof resolution of disapproval, but only if Obama fulfills certain basic terms. Obama has not complied with the most basic one: the mandate that he provide the complete Iran deal for Congress’s consideration. Therefore, notwithstanding Washington’s frenzied assumption that the 60-day period for a congressional vote is winding down, the clock has never actually started to run. Congress’s obligations under Corker have never been triggered; the Corker process is moot. …

The Corker legislation — formally known as the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act of 2015 — is crystal clear. In its very first section, the act requires the president to transmit to Congress “the agreement. . . . including all related materials and annexes.” It is too late to do that now: the act dictates that it was to have been done “not later than five days after reaching the agreement” — meaning July 19, since the agreement was finalized on July 14. Underscoring the mandate that all relevant understandings in the Iran deal — including, of course, the essential understandings — must be provided to lawmakers, the act explicitly spells out a definition of the “Agreement” in subsection (h)(1). Under it, this is what the administration was required to give Congress over six weeks ago in order to trigger the afore-described Corker review process:

    The term ‘agreement’ means an agreement related to the nuclear program of Iran . . . regardless of the form it takes, . . . including any joint comprehensive plan of action entered into or made between Iran and any other parties, and any additional materials related thereto, including annexes, appendices, codicils, side agreements, implementing materials, documents, and guidance, technical or other understandings, and any related agreements, whether entered into or implemented prior to the agreement or to be entered into or implemented in the future.

The act could not be more emphatic: To get the advantage of the favorable Corker formula that allows him to lift the anti-nuclear sanctions with only one-third congressional support, the president was required to supply Congress with every scintilla of information regarding verification. …

It is not enough to say that Congress has no obligation to proceed with the Corker review process. It would, under the act, be impermissible for Congress to do so.

Read the whole thing.

Of course, the sad reality is the Mitch McConnell and John Boehner are conscious that democrats are wilier and more determined than they are, and have, in everything, the backing of the national media. They have a majority of both houses of Congress and polls show that two thirds of the public opposes the Iran Deal, and they still won’t fight.

06 Aug 2015

First Republican Debate Transcript

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GOPCandidates

The Daily Caller obtained an advance transcript of tonight’s first Republican debate in Cleveland, Ohio.

Moderator: Welcome to the first Republican presidential debate. Assembled on stage are the top 10 candidates according to the average of the last five national polls. Let me quickly explain the format. For the first half of the debate, we will direct all questions toward Donald Trump. For the second half of the debate, we will ask the other candidates to respond to what Donald Trump said. Mr. Trump will, of course, be permitted to critique both your answers and you personally. So let’s begin. Mr. Trump, your opening statement please.

Donald Trump: Thank you for having me tonight. Look, I’m not a debater, I’m a doer. So this is an unusual setting for me — and, by the way, not just unusual because I’ve never really debated before. It’s also unusual because I’ve just never been in a room with so many losers before. I’m a really rich guy — I mean, much richer than most people know. Like over $10 billion rich. Maybe over $100 billion. And I’m not even saying this to brag. I’m just saying I don’t usually deal with so many losers. I mean, look at these guys. Just look at them. [Begins pointing at each candidate, one-by one] Looooser. Looooser. Looooser. Looooser. Ted Cruz is only a semi-loser because he said some nice things about me. Looooser. Loooser. Loooser. And looooser. All total losers. Trump’s a winner. I can make American great again.

Moderator: That concludes our opening statements.

Read the whole thing.

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