February 22, 2020

When there is nothing left to say

Cats are cool. I’ve yet to figure them out.

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February 19, 2020

Believe it or not, through the magic of technology I was able to watch both the massive Trump rally here in Phoenix and the Democrats debate in Las Vegas simultaneously. After watching both I’m starting to feel pretty damned good about my prediction of a Hillary Clinton / Stacy Abrams ticket coming out of a brokered Democrat convention.

Let’s start with the Democrats. Even if you consider yourself a liberal, this is a shit-show – nothing more, nothing less. Watching it as the student of history, I am I can’t believe this is where the Democratic Party finds itself. Think about it: where is the party of JFK and Hubert Humphrey? Or Robert Kennedy? Or, shit, even George McGovern would look like FDR compared to these bozos. At least McGovern was a man of principle. These clowns are nothing more than a bunch of kindergarten scrubs, pandering to every lesser angel of our nature, resentful, negative, cynical. It was hard to watch, but from this vantage point the only one who came out with any shred of momentum had to be Pete Buttigieg, whom I believe will be the only one to get a shred of momentum out of this clusterf**k.

I’m picking Elizabeth Warren as runner-up solely for the way she sliced, diced, and filleted Mike Bloomberg, who, in my opinion, had no business being up there. If that’s what umptold millions of dollars will get you in political advice, that doesn’t say much for either the power of his money or his judgment. “Slo’ Joe Biden remained a lost soul up there, completely oblivious to the opportunity that presented itself when those protesters started chanting before he could get his closing statement rolling. He could (and should) have shown some leadership and moxie by telling them to shut up (it would have been the moment of the debate), but instead he just stood there looking like a doofus with a stupid look on his face. Tonight was the end of his campaign. And don’t get me started on Amy Klobuchar – what a shrill, nasty woman.

I’m sorry, but if you’re a dyed-in-the-wool JFK or Bill Clinton Democrat you had to be shaking your head at what Barack Obama has allowed this Party to become – a bunch of shrill, pathetic losers who couldn’t even get elected dog-catcher in Soda-pop Valley. It was that embarrassing.

Contrast that with Donald Trump’s massive gathering in Phoenix. As far as rallies go, it was fairly stock, thousands upon thousands of folks both inside and outside the arena having a good time. Lots of laughs, the usual combination of prepared comments mixed with Trump’s stand-up comedy. But the takeaway – and no image could provide a greater contrast between the two political events, was the scene of two men carrying a 100-year old World War II veteran into the arena and then see the President acknowledge him with his son Don Jr. Laugh all you want, Democrats and liberals, but I dare you to find anything even remotely as moving from anything your party has produced – or will produce – during this election season.

The more I see the Democrats on stage, the more I think you’re going to see a brokered convention and a Hillary / Abrams ticket come out of it. Of course, it will be a disaster for the Democrats come November, but it’s a disaster in the making already. I honestly don’t know where or how the Democrats go from here. At this point, I’m just looking for a single adult in the room. And not finding one.

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February 18, 2020

…continuing from Monday’s post…

Don Surber has an excellent article about what the damage Barack Obama did to the Democratic Party, resulting in the state the Democrats currently find themselves in. Like Michael Bloomberg, Barack Obama was about nothing except for himself. He allowed the Democrats to get decimated at the state and local levels by focusing solely on his own agenda and funneling significant dough-re-mi not to the Democratic Party, but to social justice and community organizations where it ended up being nothing more than grift.

Not even four years after he left office he’s left a Democratic Party polarized between young, energetic socialists completely out of tune with the majority of the country and a bunch of old fogey elitists trying to out-left each other:

Democrats running for president today are running against themselves. Recent stories include Amy Klobuchar disowning her 2006 call for “order at the border.” Mini Mike has apologized for his stop-and-frisk program which saved hundreds of black lives. And Breadline Bernie did a 180 on his call to ban the hiring of illegal aliens.

I won’t go into the way Quid Pro Joe has ditched everything he stood for because that is the nature of a grifter. He is a pay-to-play hack who fit in like a bug in a rug in the Obama administration. Biden is running again to fleece donors again who should know better by now.

But the rest have had to jettison their beliefs because Obama fundamentally transformed Democrats into a loser communist party that hates America and will punish it by stripping citizens of their inalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

The first step upon election is to make citizenship meaningless, which is the purpose of open borders. Businesses buy in because they think cheap labor is worth it. For some reason, corporations are led by people who foolishly believe their money will protect them from the consequences of the end of citizenship.

..and you wonder why any blue-collar bar in Milwaukee, South Bend, Gary, Evanston, or Cleveland is going to be filled with former Democrat Trump voters? And if you think they’re going back any time soon you’re dreaming. Tell me to go screw all you want, I’ve seen the numbers to prove it.

Not The Beatles, but after watching the “mockumentary” “All You Need Is Cash” for, like, the tenth time I can’t get this Rutles tune out of my mind. The bridge itself, a Neil Innes creation, is pure Lennon-McCartney. If The Beatles had done it in 1965 it undoubtedly would have been #1.

…heard this song over – of all things – the loudspeakers at my local Fry’s while in the coffee/tea/spices aisle. Talk about your deep track – The Ramones do Phil Spector! poor Joey Ramone must be having a damned good laugh about it over on the other side.

OK, maybe I’ve been a little overboard about Meg Myers recently, but her stuff is just so damned good. I can’t get her song “Numb” out of my head – it’s just so well made and I luv luv luv the bass line. Just watch this video and you might become a Meg Myers fan as well. I love the form she displays playing her Fender Precision bass and the Fender equipment her guitarist uses. That’s jake right there. And the looks ain’t bad, either.

I’ve been saying this forever, hopefully this tweet will gin up the conversation started in a meaningful way. Lila Rose rocks, thank you, Lila!!

Right now things look kinda ugly, but if the Sox are playing good ball and hanging in there come Memorial Day, watch the media start calling them “grinders” and “loveable dirt dogs” and all will be forgotten. Because that’s how being in Boston and a fan of the Boston Red Sox works. Of course, if they’re not playing well…

Called into a liberal radio show last weekend and steered them straight about the bullshit they were saying about Trump’s economy being the result of Barack Obama’s economic measures. Give me a break You want to know about what Obama, The Bushes and the Clinton’s did? One Bruce Springsteen song – Mr. Liberal himself – will tell you that. If you want to know the truth it’s all right here in plain view.

…which brings me full circle back to the beginning of this post and why Trump wins in a landslide this November. Because of all the Democrats who have come over to his side and, like I will, crawl over broken glass to vote for him.

Make America Great Again.

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February 17, 2020

Been a while since I posted but you can blame that on the fore-mentioned “Client Who Shall Remain Nameless”, who, against what I would call their better judgement, chose to go from being self-hosted (i.e., running their own software) to using my company to host all of their software for them. Not for me to say, but they must have got one sweet deal to make that kind of decision!

…anyways, we’re still waiting for (in election terms) the “late results to come in”, but the early returns say my team did one heckuva job to make the transition as seamless as possible. I’m not willing to call victory yet (talk to me in a couple of days) but all those fourteen-hour days the last three weeks appears to have paid off in the end.

…but I’ll tell you this: I’m getting too old for this sh*t.

In other news:

You can’t go anywhere without seeing Mike Bloomberg commercials on TV, but it doesn’t take a genius to see that, when comparing his commercials to Donald Trump’s, a vast difference in perspective. Trump’s commercials are about how his presidency has improved the lives of Americans; Bloomberg’s are all about him. You look at Bloomberg’s comments about farmers and medical care for the elderly, and you can tell he’s just a rich elitist who has no clue about this country’s core values and how the majority of its people go about their daily lives.

…in that regard, while Bernie Sanders is also wealthy I get the sense that the kind of fairness Sanders is pushing with his Democratic-Socialist agenda at least takes into account a certain segment of America he sees as marginalized. Bloomberg is all about maintaining and protecting the elite state and its interests. Sanders and Trump – while perhaps diametrically opposed in the role of government – at least have in many ways the interests of the “common man”.

…I’ve always pushed for Bernie to be Trump’s opponent. It’s about time a political campaign run on capitalism and “America First” runs against one on Democratic-Socialism and the globalist / climate change / wealth redistribution agenda. It’s good from time to time to see a country have to make hard choices as presented by two radically different views of what this country is and the direction it should head. It might be painful, but overall it’s healthy and cleansing. Bloomberg’s campaign, on the other hand, is nothing but a cynical effort at employing his vast wealth to ensure the elitist “haves” will always have and f**k those who don’t, all under the guise of exploiting the Trump haters. Were I a Democrat I’d be pretty pissed about the whole state of things.

I think this is a bigger story than the attention it will get. You want to call Trump voters a cult? Fine, but having looked at numbers (courtesy of my friend in the national GOP establishment) it’s clear that Trump has picked up an inordinate amount of Democrats and Independents since 2016, and they’re not just Trump voters, they’re willing to crawl a mile over broken glass just to vote for him and give the middle finger to the elite media and “Deep State” bureaucrats who think their jobs have entitled them to run their own fiefdoms.

…regardless of what you think of Trump personally, the fact is that folks are coming around to what he is (for better or for worst), understanding that Trump’s for the country and all the “common sense” kinds of values it has stood for in the face of a media and progressives with their hate America first, socialist / open borders / anti-rule of law / LGBTQ, etc. agenda. Folks who see the homeless camped out on streets, the attacks on law enforcement and criminal sentencing, and those who want to keep our military involved in useless overseas engagements increasingly see Donald Trump as someone who, while not living like those of us, nevertheless relates to us and our love of country in a personal way.

This is the kind of thing that happens when you allow pedophiles under the fear of mainstream media, social media, and LGBTQ activist reprisals to enter your tent. These people are a cancer and will ultimately destroy everything you have tried to build up over time in good faith. It’s the Boy Scouts and modern-day Protestantism today, it will be the Roman Catholic Church tomorrow. Don’t get me wrong (and I say this for, like, the hundredth time), I’m not talking about gays, lesbians, and bis who just go about their daily lives living their lives and looking for love in all the right (and wrong) places like the rest of us do; I’m talking about LGBTQ activists and pedophiles who use the courts, mainstream media, social media and their progressive agenda to push their sick and perverted hatred of themselves (because that’s what it is) onto others in order to justify in their own way their dead souls and empty lives.

More tomorrow…

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February 10, 2020

It will be two weeks since we had to have our rabbit Marlie put down. Like with most rabbits, Marlie’s final decline had been swift – we knew when she had stopped eating her Timothy hay five days earlier it was not a good sign. And while she had been struggling with one of her back legs for the past couple of years (onset of arthritis) and had been on low-dose pain medicine for the past few months, I’m guessing the increasing pain just made her lose the rest of her back legs mobility and her appetite. We knew it was time.

We got Marlie when she was between 1 1/2 and three years old back in 2012. Supposedly, she had had a mate and the mate passed away, so the people who had her didn’t want her anymore. She was a kind of funny-looking rabbit – whereas most rabbits have got all kinds of fine whiskers around their eyes and nose, Marlie had only a few gnarly-looking things. The one thing Marlie had in abundance was fur – it was thick (perfect for a nice winter hat!) and when I would groom her outside (never indoors!), running my hands through her luxurious coat, our front lawn would be covered in volcanic ash-gray clumps of fur. And you never got all of it – there was always more.

The one thing Marlie loved most of all was to eat. She ate constantly (which is why the picture above captures her very essence), and it always amazed us to see just how much hay she could put away in a day. Her favorite treat, of course, was her slice of banana in the morning, but she wasn’t picky – she would eat anything you put down in front of her. She was so food aggressive we were amazed she would have even tolerated a mate – we always laughed that Marlie probably eaten her mate. Because of her food aggression there was no way in hell Marlie was ever going to be bonded with another rabbit. And she didn’t seem to mind at all.

I had forgotten just how many rabbits from our past she crossed bunny paths with. Hard to believe now, but we originally tried to bond her with Butterscotch after Butterscoth’s mate, Geronimo, died very suddenly. Marlie hated Butterscotch with a passion. At one time Marlie was one of four rabbits in our house, finding her own place while Butterscotch had the area that would soon become hers after we gave Butterscotch to sister-in-law Tam. Marlie then learned to live with Cosmo and Peanut in our office, where fences definitely made for good neighbors!

Marlie always made you smile – her way of attacking food was truly comical. Now her area has been swept clean and awaits whatever next occupants we choose to adorn that area. Like all the other rabbits we have had in the past: Marble, then Pepper, then their breed of offspring (Marble Jr, Marble Jr. Jr., Half n’ Half, Marshmallow, Li’l Pepper, Bandit, and one other whose name escapes me), Half Pint, The Big Nipper, Ginger, Geronimo, Peanut, and Cosmo, Marlie was one of a kind who will be missed. Here’s hoping that across that Rainbow Bridge Marlie finds herself an eternal field of Timothy hay to munch her way through happily. On this side of the bridge, she is missed and the house won’t truly be the same.

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February 9, 2020

Beautiful pic on a Sunday night. February in Arizona, taken with the latest software update on my iPhone 6SE. Looks nice, eh?

The clouds are moving in ahead of a storm we’re supposed to get tomorrow and Tuesday. They’re calling for 1/4 to 1/2 inch of rain, with perhaps a thunderstorm or two. We’ll see. No one around here is going to complain about rain any time of the year!

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I had finished a bunch of chores, getting rabbit food for my sister-in-law, food shopping, removing all the frost coverings on our sensitive plants, and making sure my propane exchange tank was working as needed when – bang! – all of a sudden the urge hit me that, as beautiful a day as it was, I ought to go hit some balls.

The last time I had played golf was back in late September, so it had been almost 4 1/2 months since I had even swung a club. So I wasn’t sure exactly what I would be trying to accomplish – if anything – by heading out to the Kokopelli G.C. driving range on such a lovely, mid-70s Saturday afternoon.

Personally, I was pissed that in my haste to throw up last night’s blog post about all the music currently swimming in my head I had neglected to include the Bee Gees’ “Nights on Broadway” and “Got To Get A Message To You” and The Doors’ “Hyacinth House” and “L.A. Woman” that, while driving over to the driving range, I had that opening riff of “Hyacinth House” as the guide to the tempo I would try and achieve during this range session.

(Allow me to first of all state that I had already made the decision that I was abandoning the take-away I had adopted last year, taking the club back and gradually opening it at the top so as to then close it with “a snap” at impact (the idea being, you’d gain some distance from the inherent acceleration at impact). In my view, all that did was introduce the dreaded “two-way miss” – if I got the club square at impact it would go a gazillion miles, a little early I’d generate this ugly, dipsy-doo push to the left, a little late a big yank to the right. The last time I’d played, in September at TPC Scottsdale, Tracey would ask where the ball was going at any given swing and I’d have to say honestly I’d hadn’t the faintest clue.)

I paid my money for a medium bucket and headed out to the range with no small amount of trepidation. I honestly didn’t know what I was trying to achieve outside of getting over the mental hurdle of just hitting balls again. The “Hyacinth House” tempo in my head (I know this sounds bizarre, but, hey, we’re talking The Great White Shank here), I noticed there were a couple of spots wide open next to a guy in an Air Force Academy T-shirt who was working on his Callaway Epic driver, and I found myself immediately intrigued by his smooth hips / chest / shoulder tempo – the same kind of “Hyacinth House” tempo I had in my head. Suddenly, I was taken back to almost two years ago and that range session where a guy named Matthew recognized I wasn’t keeping my “Vs”; yes! that’s exactly what I wanted to get back to!!

Right off the bat, I was inspired to go with that single, simple move – hips, chest, shoulder all working together – not caring about whether I was turning the club-face open at the top of my back-swing or not and just focus on staying on top of the ball and finishing off on my right side. Focus on tempo (not jumping at the ball) and weight shift (get off that damned left side!). I also committed myself to the idea that if I felt like my stance at address was somewhat closed, then I was most probably square. And to make sure that I was playing all my irons in the middle of my stance.

It was pretty funny that, right off from the bat, I found myself not just making great contact as far as ball-striking went, but how natural it felt, like an old friend. Look, the fact is I’m never going to be at best a 20-25 handicap golfer; far easier to reconcile one’s swing and one’ approach to the game to gauge one’s abilities. So all I focused on was: (1) staying on top of the ball, (2) swing all the through so the club ended up somewhere around my right shoulder, and (3) don’t jump at the ball. If I can do all of these things consistently I think I’ll be that much further head of the game. Of course, I’m going to have to work on that pull from 120 yards in, but better to fix one “big miss” than the dreaded “two way”. And a couple-two-three times I actually had a baby draw to show for it!

In the end, it was a pretty good day. I know I’m going to have to work out that yank or pull to the right (most especially with my short clubs), but far better that than to have to deal with that fu**in’ two-way miss that was making my life miserable. Not only did I not know where the ball would go after any given swing, but that ugly dipsy-doo push left was costing me a ton of yards off the tee. Easier to work on a one-way miss than the dreaded two-way, that’s for sure!

A good start.

Filed in: Golf Quest by The Great White Shank at 01:30 | Comments (0)
February 8, 2020

I’m bushed. Hard week. Just the latest in a bunch of hard work weeks, with two really hard weeks coming up. Glad I have my music to help keep me sane. Here are the songs currently rolling around in my head, in no uncertain order. Taken together they don’t make much sense, but I can guarantee you there’s no Steely Dan.

Tikiyaki Orchestra – “Aloha, Baby!” and “Bachelor #1”

Bruce Springsteen – “Girls In Their Summer Clothes” (Channeling Phil Spector!)

Meg Myers – “Numb”. The lyrics are so good I’m putting them here, besides it accurately describes what work is like for me these days:

When all is said and done
Tell me how to write this
Tell me how to fight this war
I’ll keep marching on
Like a broken robot
Money back guarantee

I’m in your custody
But I am not a criminal
I can be your next big thing
Look at what I’ve become
Silly little monster, should have just held my tongue

I hate the feeling like this
Weight up on my shoulders
Pushing the pressure down on me
You think you want the best for me
But nothing really matters
If you force it, it won’t come

I guess I’m feeling numb
I guess I’m feeling numb

Sometimes I wish I could fly
Through a secret trapped door
Into another life (life)
Bury my head in the sand
I don’t want to grow up
La la la la la la

I hate the feeling like this
Weight up on my shoulders
Pushing the pressure down on me
You think you want the best for me
But nothing really matters
If you force it, it won’t come

I guess I’m feeling numb
I guess I’m feeling numb

I’ll play the game
I’ll do everything you tell me
All the losers win in the end

I’ll play the game
I’ll do everything you tell me
All the losers win in the end

I hate the feeling like this
Weight up on my shoulders
Pushing the pressure down on me
You think you want the best for me
But nothing really matters
If you force it, it won’t come

I guess I’m feeling numb
I guess I’m feeling numb

Also, Meg’s version of “Running Up That Hill”

Kate Bush – “Wuthering Heights” and “Running Up That Hill”

Raymond LeFebvre – “Soul Coaxing” “It seems to me, that after having lived all these years, that only thing that matters, are the memories.”

Donna Summer – “I Feel Love”

Blondie – “Happy Dog” (dedicated to my ol’ pal in Louisville, Jerome!)

REM – “Find The River”

The Sandals – “Wingnut’s Theme” (in my view the best surf song ever recorded!) and “Tradewinds”

Fleetwood Mac “Bleed To Love Her” (can’t tell you how much I love this song!)

The Ronettes – “Baby, I Love You”

Taylor Swift – “Delicate”

The Beach Boys – “Let Us Go On This Way” and “Baby Blue”

Jimmy Buffett – “Floridays” and “A Pirate Looks At Forty” (Both timeless in my mind’s rotation)

George Harrison “Marwa Blues” and “Cheer Down”

Katy Perry – “Roar”

Bob Marley – “Redemption Song”

Anything by Pink Floyd.

It’s the music that keeps me sane.

True quote today from sister-in-law Tam: “Just wanted to let you know I’m alive. I think it was the water.”
What a great opening for a novel.

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February 6, 2020

Huge fallout from across the political spectrum following President Trump’s State of the Union speech. Primarily thanks to Speaker of the House “San Fran Nan” Pelosi, who created an image for the ages, ripping up the President’s speech before millions of television (and internet, where it has, of course, gone beyond viral) viewers. Look, even if you’re on the so-called “other” side of the aisle, it wasn’t a good look. Fortunately, Mitch McConnell’s Senate has, in effect, done the same to the House’s impeachment charges. You see, two can play that game:

Impeachment must be viewed in the context of the Democrats’ effort to destroy Donald Trump that began prior to his inauguration. For more than three years, their get-Trump campaign has dominated the news. Mostly, it was the Russia hoax. The Democrats originally intended to use that as the basis for impeachment. When the Mueller report negated that plan, they switched–literally overnight–to the much weaker Ukraine theory. No matter. It was impeachment or bust, if only to continue filling up the nightly news with purported Trump “scandals.”

Now the smoke will begin to clear, and I don’t think the Democrats will like the landscape that comes into focus. Their Iowa caucuses were a laughingstock. They made fools of themselves (Nancy Pelosi, especially) during Trump’s State of the Union speech. And, most seriously, they don’t have a presidential candidate. Joe Biden is in freefall, and the party’s elders, such as they are, concede that Bernie Sanders would be a disaster. Will they turn to “Mayor Pete” Buttigieg? Will Michael Bloomberg be their savior? Or will Hillary Clinton or John Kerry come out of retirement? I think they are grasping at straws.

A few other random thoughts:

Meg Myers’ “Numb” is such a great tune. Great bass line, spooky guitar. I can’t get it out of my head. Trolling around YouTube it’s hard to find a song of hers I don’t like. I think she’s a very unique, talented, and underrated artist. With great shoulders.

Enough whining about the Red Sox trading Mookie Betts to the Dodgers, if it indeed ends up happening. First of all, David Price was a bad apple who should never have been traded for. That being said, it’s hard to see the Sox winning their World Series championship in 2018 without his iconic performances, so I guess that helped get the job done. But he was never a good fit in Boston, and following that incident involving Hall of Famer and all-around good guy Dennis Eckersley, I’m thinking the upper echelon knew he was at best a distraction, at worst a bad apple in the clubhouse. You won’t see me crying over his loss, for sure.

As for Betts, look, the guy was committed to going free agent, so what were the Sox supposed to do? I guess they could have waited for the July 31 trading deadline, but given Betts’ status and insistence on becoming a free agent, the Sox were always going to get taken to the cleaners no matter what they’d be hoping to get in trade. My feeling is, if Betts truly wanted to stay in Boston, he would have made it easier for them; given baseball salaries of late, the money was always going to be there in one form or another. I despise greed, and the guy was going to be making a ridiculous amount of dough-re-mi no matter what, so good riddance.

…methinks Mr. Betts is about to find out there is no such thing as the grass being greener on the other side (which it never is).

Disappointed in my senator Kyrsten Sinema for voting for the President’s impeachment on both counts. She’s always been her own person – she showed that at last night’s State of the Union speech, refusing to dress in “suffragette white” along with the coven of Democratic women who seem to think people really care about that kind of thing (they don’t). But I have to think that sleazebag lizard Mitt Romney‘s (I still can’t believe I voted for that weasel) vote to impeach purely (regardless of what he says) on personal grounds gave Sinema and West Virginia senator Joe Manchin sufficient cover to stick with their own caucus. After all, she’s a liberal and – dare I say it – a maverick, so you’re going to have to take the good with the bad. I still like her.

…mark my words, this is just the beginning of Romney’s ostracizing. As far as GOP politics is concerned, he’s toast.

Here’s another Meg Myers tune I really like. She’s, er, intense.

..and this one is very 90’s grunge. Love the Fender equipment!

Bernie? Mayor Pete? One can only hope either of these two win the Democrat nomination. They’ll get slaughtered at the ballot box in November. Of course, I think the same could be said about anyone the Dems nominate. There’s just too much economic good news to make American want to take a chance with a bunch of incompetents who can’t even run a rural state’s primary.

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February 4, 2020

Regardless of what most people think, politics is not micro, it’s macro. It’s about guiding vision as much – if not more – than results. If you needed any further evidence of that, think about the Trump presidency: Donald J. Trump’s actions – whether you approve of them or not – are the result of his sweeping vision of “America First” vs. unelected Beltway bureaucrats (a.k.a. the so-called “Deep State”) and the forces of globalism. The Democrats under House Speaker “San Fran Nan” Pelosi, the so-called “Resistance” operating inside the federal government, and their mouthpieces in the mainstream media operate under an illusion (no matter how misguided it might be) that the 2016 election was somehow stolen from Hillary Clinton, thereby making everything President Trump stands for and does, illegitimate.

As was mentioned in Monday’s post, the whole “Impeachment 1.0 / Russia Collusion” Mueller Report and “Impeachment 2.0 / Ukraine” were designed, in the minds of that so-called “Resistance”, to remove an unduly and illegitimately elected President from office.

Rarely, if ever, in American political history have you have three distinct events occurring in tandem that will, to one extent or another, influence American vision and perception entering a presidential election year as we are seeing before our very eyes in 2020. On Monday you had the closing arguments of the Senate impeachment trial of President Trump followed by the Iowa caucuses, on Tuesday you had the President’s State of the Union speech, and on Wednesday you’ll have the vote to acquit the President of the impeachment charges against him. Taken individually you’ve got enough power and emotion to fill more than a week of 24-hour news cycles; coming on the heels of one another? Unbelievable political intrigue and drama, chock full of contrasting visions and promises for our country.

Let’s take them one by one. In my mind, the story of the final day of speeches by the U.S Senate prior to the vote on the Democrats impeachment charges goes to Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, who delivered a blistering expose of those who he is convinced worked with the “human lemur” Adam Schiff and his team to frame the charges (if you want to call them that) involving “Impeachment 2.0”, including in his speech the so-called “whistleblower” Eric Ciaramella as one of the main conspirators who conceived the impeachment narrative. Paul’s charges went to the root of the entire impeachment saga, focusing on a cadre of un-elected bureaucrats who took it upon themselves to not just use a FISA court to spy on an opponent’s election campaign, but concoct a scheme to collaborate with the sitting chairman of the House Intelligence Committee to frame a sitting President on impeachment charges.

Hours later, the entire nation became witness to the absolute fiasco of the Iowa caucuses where all the political lunacy, intrigue, incompetency and outright craziness that is today’s Democratic Party was displayed for all to see. If, as the American Spectator’s Charles Lipson writes, America was looking for a steady, competent, and inspiring alternative to President Trump and his administration, they are now sorely disappointed:

To begin with, this failure makes the Democratic party look ridiculous. The damage is compounded because they are the ‘party of government’. That’s their brand, and it has been since Franklin Roosevelt proposed the New Deal. Democratic policies almost always call for more government, run from Washington. When people point to social or economic problems, Democrats reflexively respond with laws, regulations, and bureaucracies to tackle them (and taxes to pay for them). That prospect looks a lot less appealing when you can’t count the votes in a high school gym. It doesn’t encourage people to say, ‘These are just the people to handle my healthcare.’

Contrast that with the President’s State of the Union speech, one that was forceful, emotional, and brassy on what the President’s vision was for America. The President spoke in bold and (yes, in agreement with some of his detractors here) unusually partisan terms for such an occasion. If there was a conciliatory tone anywhere in the speech, I didn’t hear it. And to that I say, huzzah – that’s my President! America didn’t vote Donald Trump into office to be a go-along, get along kind of guy. They voted for a mover, a shaker, and a doer. Everything the President spoke about – free market capitalism, respect for the Constitution and the of law, freedom, the defense of our borders, and, as always, “America First” was in stark contrast to the den of “Resistance” vipers dressed in white to indicate their own competing vision of America, one involving socialized healthcare, open borders, unregulated abortion, government rule and regulation, and European-style democratic socialism. If folks were looking for a contrast in visions, one could hardly paint a broader distinction. As Powerline blog’s John Hinderaker writes:

This puts the Democrats in a tough spot. Through the first half of the speech, President Trump reeled off one item of good news after another: Record low unemployment! Lowest black unemployment ever! Lowest Hispanic unemployment ever! Rising wages, especially at the bottom! Median net worth skyrocketing! And so on. The Democrats greeted all of this with stony silence. When Trump announced that in the last three years, 10 million people have gotten off welfare, the Democrats looked as though they were ready to cry.

This comes across very poorly, I think. Would it really cost the Democrats anything to look as though they are happy about a good economy. I don’t think so, but their hatred of the president is so all-consuming that their judgment is warped.

Then, of course, there are the more controversial issues–controversial with the Democrats, anyway, if not with the voters. Like illegal immigration and sanctuary cities. In the battle between law-abiding Americans and criminal aliens, the Democrats made it very clear whose side they are on.

Which is the way it ought to be. Elections have consequences, and Americans (contrary to the Democrats’ impeachment vision) ought to have the right to choose their own vision for this country’s future. Personally, I had no problem with President refusing to shake Nancy Pelosi’s hand – she’s not just a political opponent but an enemy to him and his administration; I think Pelosi’s utterly classless move of ripping up the President’s speech in sight of everyone might garner her cheers from “the Resistance” who so want the President’s speech and agenda to be impeached, but it’s gonna have a lasting effect in the form of literally hundreds of presidential, House, and Senate campaign commercials:

Dems put on a show for a tiny gaggle of noisy hate-maddened lunatics. Trump played to a vastly larger audience, a contrast perfectly captured by him delivering a poetic and inspirational closing while Pelosi acted like a toddler and ripped up a copy of his speech.

Taken together, both actions illustrate in their own way the two grand visions before the American people in action: a President who considers impeachment a slap in his face, a stain on his presidency, and an act of disrespect to those who voted for him and support him, and a Speaker of the House seething with rage and resentment and reduced to a petty act of defiance, whose Party, even after the President’s acquittal tomorrow, remains determined to remove this President in any way possible before November 3.

This is what it has all come down to.

Filed in: Politics & World Events by The Great White Shank at 21:38 | Comments (0)

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