Walls and Negotiation

Last Friday, President Donald Trump hosted House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D, CA), Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D, NY), House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R, CA), Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R, KY), and a few others for another round of attempted negotiation over the border wall we so badly need.

The outcome?  Pelosi and Schumer continued their refusal to negotiate at all.  They demanded the government’s partial shutdown be ended before they’ll say a word about funding for a wall.  Never mind that, as they’ve made clear since last month, that word, their only word, is “No,” anyway.

Has Jeff Flake Relocated to Utah?

After Mitt Romney’s unprovoked tirade in his New Year’s Day op-ed in The Washington Post—before he even was sworn in as the Republican Senator from Utah—I have to ask.

The Trump presidency made a deep descent in December.

It’s downhill from there.  America is divided and getting more so—and that’s President Donald’s fault, not at all the Progressive-Democrats’.  It was the Progressive-Democrats that tried to assassinate with smear a Supreme Court nominee.  It’s Progressive-Democrats that daily dismiss those who disagree with them as ignorant, racist, misogynists.  It’s Progressive-Democrats who want to abolish ICE, hamstring CBP, and functionally eliminate our nation’s borders by demanding they be entirely open.  It’s Progressive-Democrats who move to protect illegal aliens, even at the cost of murdered cops, American citizens, and the expansion of our drug abuse epidemic, while declining to protect those same cops and citizens with the same energy.

Center of the Political Spectrum

Where is it?  The German news outlet Deutsche Welle seems to typify Europe’s view of it, and its view is illustrated in this article about the inauguration of Brazil’s new President, Jair Bolsonaro.

DW labeled Bolsonaro a right-wing politician.  Why? Because he’s “pro-gun, anti-corruption,” as though wanting a safe population living and working in an honest market with an honest government is somehow not what everyone wants.  Oh, wait—here it is: Bolsonaro said on his assuming Brazil’s presidency that Brazil has been

“liberated from socialism and political correctness.”

And in his separate inauguration speech, Bolsonaro had promised to

Of Course They Can

President Xi Jinping of the People’s Republic of China increased pressure on the Republic of China to surrender and be “unified” with the PRC.

Mr Xi said differences in political systems can’t be used as an excuse to resist unification.

Of course they can. Those differences are what makes the two nations separate from each other.  Never mind that the two have been independent of each other ever since the mainland under Mao Tse-tung won then-China’s civil war and drove the Kuomintang off the mainland onto the island of Taiwan, with Mao then creating the PRC.  The reason for the civil war was precisely those differences, differences over which the Communists were willing to kill those who opposed them.

Brexit and a Pan-European Military Establishment

Recall the year-old EU effort with PESCO (the EU’s carefully euphemistically named Permanent Structured Cooperation), the bloc’s effort to form an EU army that would represent and act in the (sovereign) name of the European Union in defending Europe from outside incursions.  Oh, and be less dependent on us and our nuclear umbrella, our treasure, and our blood for their defense.

We’re seeing yet another example of the too-broad effort to unite all of Europe under one political flag, as this PESCO effort continues to lag.  More importantly, we’re seeing the cost to the EU of Brexit.  As Handelsblatt Today observed, the current situation is one of military failure:

Bloomberg, Democrats, and Rehabilitation

In a Fox News piece about billionaires contemplating running for President in 2020, one comment jumped out at me.  Adrienne Elrod, erstwhile Hillary Clinton senior advisor and current Progressive-Democrat strategist, made this remark about Michael Bloomberg’s chances in particular, were he to enter the primary contest for the Progressive-Democrat Party’s nomination.

[T]he biggest thing that’s going to hurt him more than his personal wealth is the fact that he used to be a Republican.

Fox News cited her as continuing:

She said that would be a “far bigger liability” competing in “a very left-leaning progressive grassroots primary.”

Trump and Powell to Meet

Oh, the danger.  At least what Peter Nicholas and Paul Kiernan worried about in their Friday Wall Street Journal piece.  President Donald Trump might exert too much pressure on Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell.

[A] sit-down could pose serious risks to the perceived independence of the Fed, according to lawmakers, former Fed officials, and longtime central bank watchers.

Maybe even fire Powell, or threaten him with that.

Most of the ones making such claims are Progressive-Democrats manufacturing a beef for the sake of having something Trumpian about which to whine.

Racism and Naming Schools

Jason Willick had an op-ed in Friday’s Wall Street Journal that recounted a failed effort to rename a Palo Alto, CA, middle school in honor of an American WWII war hero. That hero was PFC and Silver Star recipient Fred Minoru Yamamoto of the US Army’s 442nd Regimental Combat Team; he was killed in action in 1944 in the Vosges, in eastern France, by German artillery.

Happy New Year

Originally published in 2012, I repeat it here.

This blogger hopes for increasing prosperity for all in the new year just begun.  Following are some additional thoughts, from those better than I.

Dinner was made for eating, not for talking.
–William Makepeace Thackeray

New Year’s Resolution: to tolerate fools more gladly, provided this does not encourage them to take up more of my time.
–James Agate

Those who gave thee a body, furnished it with weakness; but He who gave thee Soul, armed thee with resolution.  Employ it, and thou art wise; be wise, and thou art happy.
–Akhenaton

Side Note

Much has been made of the Republican Party’s “control” of a unified Federal government these past two years, with Republicans “controlling” the House of Representatives, the Senate, and the Presidency.  Much is made, also, of the Republican Party’s continued “control” of the Senate, indeed its increased “control” following the mid-terms, as a result of which Republicans extended their majority from 51 to 53.

The latest is Matthew Continetti’s claim on last Friday’s Special Report (hosted by Bret Baier on Fox News): in discussing the Schumer Shutdown Redux (my term, not Continetti’s), Continetti insisted that this shutdown began in that unified government—repeating particularly the claim that Republicans “controlled” the Senate.