Beyond the Cusp

December 17, 2016

What a Difference the Media Makes

 

Thinking back just over eight years to the media coverage of the election of President Barack Hussein Obama and his overwhelming Democrat majority in both houses of Congress and with a filibuster proof majority in the Senate and the media was all dreamy-eyed. There was their obvious euphoria which reflected much of the population’s reaction to having elected the first Black President. There was speculation of all the wondrous things to come, universal healthcare, a more perfect society, booming economy, jobs galore, the end of war, historic changes and a better Supreme Court. It was almost ghoulish when some articles even listed three or potentially four older Supreme Court Justices who might pass on or resign during President Obama’s terms in office. Oh yea, and his reelection was already in the bag, the one item which was apparently true. There were no mentions of crime rates, homeless people, drug problems amongst teens and young adults, rampant crime or even mention that some who had voted for Senator John McCain might not be as “in” with the election results. No, there was no mention of them or that they were not happy with the idea of fundamentally changing America and feared they were about to experience a rerun of President Jimmy Carter on steroids. Little did they know but they were also going to get a big dose of President Lyndon Baines Johnson and steamrolling over Congress and a pinch of President Lincoln and his disregard for the limitations of the Constitution. The ride was going too long and especially hard for Strong Conservatives, Religious Traditionalists, Strong Foreign Policy and Constitutional Purists. In most of the media, even presumably conservative Fox News with the only exceptions being some conservatives talk radio and television and editorial page writers who predicted a long cold time in the winter grounds of the political world. They were exiled and shunned with much of the media predicting the end of conservatives and the Republican Party. They were almost correct.

 

The presumed common knowledge that any Republican could and would have defeated Hillary Clinton and done so with a far more definitive vote count in the popular vote and Electoral College. Some doubt this bold and seeming obvious logic and ask if Jeb Bush had been the Republican candidate, would he have done as well or even won? Then counting out Jeb Bush, which of the other fifteen remaining candidates would have won? Would Chris Christie, Marco Rubio, Ben Carson, Scott Walker, Mike Huckabee, Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, John Kasich, Rick Perry, Bobby Jindal, Carly Fiorina, Rick Santorum, Lindsey Graham, George Pataki or Jim Gilmore really have drawn voters to the polls in the numbers that Donald Trump? Would any of these have made a bigger spectacle of the media and their bias and used the media against the system as did Donald Trump? Granted, there might have been a select few, no more than three, who would have honestly had a better than even chance of defeating Hillary Clinton using traditional political theater. Republicans should face the fact that Donald Trump really was the choice looking back because Hillary Clinton had the old style game wrapped up and had the funding to bury any Republican message put forth in the traditional manner. Trump won by making news report him and often only him and that was what was necessary to outdo Hillary Clinton and the billions she had to spend. It was being brash and in the face of the media demanding time that gave Trump the edge other candidates would have lacked. Name a single Republican who could have gotten more media than Hillary Clinton and also been considered electable by normative standards, the means all the others with the possible exception of Ted Cruz whose appeal was even more limited than Donald Trump had.

 

Forward to the media after this Electoral College landslide and what are the media covering. Their main stories are “stolen election,” popular vote, Hillary Won, Electors need be allowed to switch to Hillary Clinton, end Electoral College, American democracy (forgetting that America is actually a Constitutional Democratic Republic with the words other than Democratic having the majority of the weight), Russian hacking, Russia backing Trump, and more Hillary Clinton needs to become the winner by any and all means necessary. When not declaring Donald Trump illegitimate, questioning election results, giving slanted or even false stories about delegates changing their vote on the first ballot of the Electoral College (never happened and most delegates are sworn to vote for the declared winner of their state on the first or first two ballots with some having to do so no matter how many ballot votes are necessitated), then they are talking of all the threats and difficulties which President Trump will face. Some news items are talking up the challenges and negatives in society which they have not mentioned for the past eight years, really weird how all these things, low workforce participation, higher than reported unemployment, crime rates climbing, murder rates at all-time highs, foreign problems in the Middle East, especially Iran, Afghanistan, and Syria which were all under control until Trump won because that caused them to explode, Putin, more Putin, and some even decry that Donald Trump was elected President and has done nothing about any of these problems. Truth is Donald Trump will not actually be elected President until next week after the Electoral College votes and sends their results to Congress and then we technically need to wait for Congress to accept the ballots and then he becomes President Elect, probably some time a week before the Inauguration. Oh, another item is that he does not become President until after the swearing in at approximately noon on January 20, 2017 and then he becomes President with absolutely no advisors, Cabinet, or Administration in any working order as he has to present all his appointees for Senate ratification. These are often a simple formality with an occasional debate and extra few days or a week required and rarely is anyone the President desires on his Cabinet turned down. Expect the Democrats to filibuster and try to prevent some, if not many or even a majority, of President Donald Trump’s Cabinet appointments with the possibility that some will be refused because the Democrats refuse to permit a vote to ratify their appointments. While this is not unheard of, it has not been a practice and the last time there was even doubts was with President Ronald Reagan and we cannot recall any from before that going back to the first republican President, Abe Lincoln, who was the last to have any appointments to his Cabinet debated harshly.

 

Why the problems with the Cabinet. Well, the media has been debating the problem already. President Trump has chosen two Generals, actually three but the third does not require Congressional approval as he will be the National Security Advisor (but he may require release from the seven years required retirement time before serving in government which falls to Congress), both of whom President Obama let go, forced retirement, fired (you choose the description which fits your thoughts as they all end the same way) thus also require waivers as well as approval to their positions. The generals are General James “Mad Dog” Mattis (ret) as Secretary of Defense and General John Kelly (ret) as Secretary of Homeland security (Lt. General Michael Flynn as National Security Advisor). The positions that the media is all hyperventilating over, having retired Generals appointed from the Marines and Army, are hardly positions where having served in a ranking position in the military would exactly be a disqualification and one might claim an advantageous part to have in one’s background. General John Kelly (ret) served largely in intelligence and that General James “Mad Dog” Mattis (ret) was an infantry and combat arms commander who was loved and highly rated by the men who served under him, both as officers and enlisted down to the lowest grunt. Lt. General Michael Flynn also has a background serving in the Defense Intelligence Agency as well as holding Joint Functional Component Command for Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance. General James “Mad Dog” Mattis service history is extensive and reads U.S. Central Command, U.S. Joint Forces Command, Supreme Allied Commander Transformation, 1st Marine Expeditionary Force, U.S. Marine Forces Central Command, Marine Corps Combat Development Command, Commander 1st Marine Division, Commander 7th Marine Regiment, and Commander 1st Battalion, 7th Marines. General John Kelly (ret) served as United States Southern Command, 1st Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, and Multinational Force West. We would not be exactly upset, saddened or even perturbed should Donald Trump choose a few more Generals as well as others with extensive military background as we fear that such men and women with such experience are going to become a needed commodity sooner rather than later as the world, especially the Middle East and Europe crumble before our eyes.

 

We can expect much of the media going into hypoxic shock from hyperventilating and potentially passing out with some requiring medical treatment for what will eventually be referred to as TRDS, or Trump Reflexive Distress Syndrome. There is probably no cure but as we understand, it is treated by having the afflicted color in coloring books (neatness not required nor is coloring inside the lines), petting puppies and kittens, hugging warm blankets while suckling on a pacifier or thumb, standing in a corner screaming obscenities at the wall (only for the most severe cases) and the always required stress counselling with a trained and licensed Stress Counsellor. There will continue to be long lists of a litany of troubles, criminal waves, lawless cities, and general disasters worldwide which are the direct result of the Trump victory and also the greatest threats to world societal peace and thus things that a President Trump will be responsible for contending with. Of course there is an instant solution to all these ills, find a way to elect Hillary Clinton instead of Donald Trump and all these problems would disappear until a Republican would get elected, like that would ever happen in a sane world. See, even we are showing signs of stress due to all those who are suffering from TRDS (Trump Reflexive Distress Syndrome). Those who voted approvingly for Donald Trump and have been celebrating this victory should be advised to not turn on their radios or televisions unless they know and have wisely chosen where and from whom to get their news. Choose incorrectly and your sanity will be rocked by the openly biased partisanship against Trump which is close to universal even across the ocean in Europe the leftists are in shock. There is hope that these people can be settled sufficiently such that they can explode again should Donald Trump even run and especially should he win a second term.

 

TRDS or Trump Reflexive Distress Syndrome

TRDS or Trump Reflexive Distress Syndrome

 

Puppies at George Mason University Picture Care of Washington Post

Puppies at George Mason University
Picture Care of Washington Post

 

But first, why don’t we all agree to wait and see how he performs before denouncing him as a failure because all these problems are out there and he has not done a single thing. You are correct, but that is because he is not the President yet. If you had truly wanted actions taken on these issues you would have been covering them for the past eight years and wondering where President Obama was on these problems but instead you simply celebrated having won the election because that is what it is all about, winning. President Obama summed up the left when he stated simply to the Republicans when they were intentionally locked out of anything to do with the crafting of Obamacare and he blurted accusingly, “We won!” What an argument over any input on such an overreaching piece of legislation but on the other side, Obamacare is pure Democrat Party crafting and did not receive a single Republican vote in the entire two houses of Congress. Unprecedented, and there you have it.

 

Beyond the Cusp 

 

November 25, 2016

Media Suddenly Discovers Dastardly Destruction Everywhere

 

With the election victory by Donald Trump and his running mate Mike Pence the media has discovered numerous pressing situations bordering on the brink of catastrophes. Suddenly Syria has become a conundrum of crushing confrontations waiting for the President elect while the current resident of the White House faced much lesser problems and addressing this would be asking a bit much. Oddly enough they also realized that Iraq is torn with ethnic strife as well as having much of its territory either occupied or threatened by the Islamic State. They also found that the Islamic State is operating as they please in Syria. Yemen is in the midst of a civil war and threatens a vital waterway at the south end of the Red Sea called the Bab-el-Mandeb. Saudi Arabia and Egypt have split with Egypt now aligning with Russia and Bashir al-Assad while Saudi Arabia continues to fight the Yemen Houthi rebels who are backed by Iran. The Saudis are also backing terrorist groups fighting Bashir al-Assad and some suspect they are knowingly funding and arming the Islamic State through alternate avenues. Turkey’s Erdogan appears to have suddenly gone rogue demanding immediate answers for Turkey’s admittance to the European Union (EU) one day and threatening to turn away any offer from the EU and consider joining the joint trading group organized by Russia and China called the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO). There are warring tribal groups contending with terrorist groups and crime families all vying for control of their slice of what was Libya. The Sudan and South Sudan are still fighting and there is a civil war of sorts in South Sudan adding to the confusion. There are terrorists plaguing Nigeria and even Europe is being overrun. Their prognosis is that the election of Donald Trump has caused the nations of the Middle East and Northern Africa (MENA) to explode suddenly and fiercely into frenzied destruction and fighting breaking out everywhere. Additionally, Russia is protecting their ports in Syria, namely in Latakia, and thus also protecting Bashir al-Assad who is ever so slowly regaining control of Syria one costly meter at a time. Wait; Russia has use of a port in the Mediterranean Sea, this is big. Oh how simple things would have stayed had only the voters in the United States had chosen wisely and elected Hillary Clinton.

 

The sudden awakening of the mainstream media to the problems throughout MENA states and beyond is almost amusing. Anyone reading news services from these effected regions have known and spoken with furrowed brows and stern hard faces often using terse terms describing ongoing events which continue to spin further and further out of control. Many have laid the problems at the feet of fecklessness in the foreign policies of the United States over the past decade emphasizing the retreat and resentment at being abandoned left to the scoundrels and other threats without any hope of rescue from those they had believed were their ally and eternal friend. As long as the United States did not have even a dog in the fight, and we mean literally not even a dog, let alone manpower or military forces, these traumatic conflagrations were unimportant as far as the media was concerned. The White House ignored these problems while making the one-off mention brushing aside concerns as if they were nothing more than a hiccup on the timeline of history as the White House was making it. The White House and especially President Obama and his Secretaries of State Hillary Clinton and John Kerry along with Samantha Powers and Susan Rice, the pair were Presidential Security Advisor and Ambassador to the United Nations and then switched positions a while after Benghazi, have all painted the Middle East as there being a situation in Syria and the Israeli-Palestinian problem and if only Israel would make nice and completely surrender to the Palestinians then miraculously Syria would become peaceful overnight as would any other disturbance anywhere in the world. It is as if the only actual disturbance in the force is Israel, so does that make Israel Yoda? Seriously, the Obama White House position has been that Israel causes unrest throughout the Middle East and beyond and it is the Jews residing beyond the 1949 Armistice Lines on lands gained in a defensive war started by Egypt and Syria and joined on day two by Jordan despite pleading from Israel for their remaining neutral. This Jordanian attack led to Israel liberating Judea and Samaria from Jordan’s illegal occupation for nineteen years including half of Jerusalem.

 

Had Syria and Egypt attacked any other nation in the world and had Jordan joined on the second day and, for example let us say they attacked Peru; if Peru in that war had gained the lands of Judea and Samaria, they would have been allowed to retain the lands and even push any non-Peruvians off the lands with minimal complaint from the world. The problem is they did not attack Peru but instead they attacked Israel. There is an effort initiated by the British when they saw that allowing the formation of the Jewish State was going to upset the Arabs they decided to do whatever they were able to prevent Israel from ever coming to fruition. They could do this as they controlled the Mandate for the geographic area called Palestine, a name derived from the Roman name for the area of southern Syria, Syria Palaestina.

 

Roman Provinces of Syria Palaestina

 

The British after World War I continued to import Arabs to reside between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea with ample assistance from the Arab League and surrounding Arab nations from as far as Algeria though largely from the Sudan, Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Iraq and even Turkey. This kept the Jewish population below fifty-percent thus never quite fulfilling the requirement of being capable of ruling a nation. In the aftermath of World War II the British had lost their taste for empire and simply wanted to leave the Middle East and particularly the area which was to become Israel. Ever since the British leaving and Israel being founded there have been numerous studies which have shown how the Arab world has designs to be rid of the Jewish State and how often the European nations are supportive of the Arab efforts as though they would love for Israel to fail, they do not have the will to cause such in any manner other than indirectly. Do not misunderstand as the Europeans gladly enrich their lives with the discoveries and inventions from Israeli sources and even have utilized some such as instant messenger programs to support the BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanction Israel) Movement and other injurious acts.

 

Denouncing Israel in the United Nations General Assembly and throughout the various agencies which often act in injurious ways such as when recently UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) ruled that the Temple Mount and surrounding areas have no historical ties to the Jews or Judaism which is a manner of denying the existence of the First and Second Temples and close to two-thousand years of Israelite and Jewish history. And UNESCO comes in a poor second when it comes to denunciations of Israel where the UNHRC (United Nations Human Rights Council) who have denounced Israel in virtually every meeting for the past five years. The General Assemble also has a poor record though there has recently been some small headway with Israel sponsoring resolutions which was passed by a vote of 129-30-8 to set up technical training, global entrepreneurship and sharing of technologic systems through assistance efforts where often Israel and other developed nations share technological advancements in areas such as agriculture and power generation assisting these developing nations making greater and stronger strides toward a bright future.

 

Needless to point out that all these problems, wars, conflagrations and turmoil have existed for much of the past decade and is not a reaction where the world all but exploded because of the election of Donald Trump. We can also predict some of the big news stories and special editions where a story is expounded and enlarged all passed off as news. There will be all sorts of new findings about the rampant homelessness and how people are feeling helpless and cannot seem to find any assistance for their plight. The mentally challenged living on American city streets not receiving their medications and suffering because of the difficulty in receiving proper care will be another feature story, multi-part most likely running for a week or for four straight Sunday night prime time. Unemployment stories will be big initially and the people who are now not considered to be seeking work as their unemployment insurance ran out and they have been unemployed over one year thus are not part of the computations, well, the media will now use a newer and more accurate definition which they will mention softly and in passing once and then count people who have not held a job up to five years, maybe a decade. There will be heartbreaking stories of youths dropping out of school and the United States will have a drug problem once again. There will be heart-wrenching profiles of people being deported for being illegally in the country whether that be overstaying a student visa because you found a good job and who wants to return to the Ukraine about now. There will be stories about how families are on the verge of being broken up as one or any number of the family are here illegally. Many of these stories will be about people who are using the system to press their particular case and many will remain and become legal citizens within a decade, but while they are uncertain their stories play oh so well. Let us leave you with what you may find to be an unbelievably astounding fact; President Obama has deported more people than any previous President.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

November 24, 2016

If We Lose then Everybody Loses

 

The demonstrations (riots) occurring across the United States largely in the major cities, especially Democrat Party strongholds claiming that Trump is not, can not and never will be their President refuse to abate. Apart from this being a definite example of delusional denial, it is also much ado about nothing as the rules on how the office of President is chosen has been known for well over two-hundred years and all contenders understood the rules going in. It is not like Hillary Clinton has even shown the slightest designs or desires to challenge the results. There has been a number of disgusting results turn from these examples of bad behavior with one of the most egregious was the beating of a fifteen year old Rockville, Maryland High School student by numerous classmates for wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat. This was far from the only casualty from the protests where stores have been breached with their windows smashed and merchandise stolen. In one case a Starbucks Coffee store was broken into and coffee mugs were stolen and used as projectiles thrown at the police. Numerous other reports have surfaced of Trump supporters or just some refusing to join the protests being pummeled and beaten simply for not agreeing with the mob. For those who agree with these activities I have a simple question, what would your reaction have been if Hillary Clinton had won the Electoral College vote but lost narrowly in the popular vote and Trump supporters took to the streets rioting and beating Hillary supporters? If that would have struck you as indefensible, as I would hope it would, why are the current malcontents then tolerated. If Hillary supporters and all who voted for any of the candidates other than Trump, especially respected members of those groups, would come out and denounce these rioters then perhaps the United States could start working towards healing.

 

Civility is the basis for civilization and what allows disparate groups to coexist despite differing opinions. Elections are presumably the peaceful means for choosing leaders which has presumably been accepted as a replacement for generals or others leading their band of armed insurrectionists and taking the seat of power by force. That is the alternative which these demonstrators, especially those causing damage and beating anyone thought to be from the opposition, and the reason elections were initiated. Changing government by revolution every time a sizeable and well-armed group decided they should lead coming in and murdering the current leaders and destroying much of the capital city and sometimes leading to a major civil war destroying much of the kingdom all just to make a transition in power might be considered paying too high a price when compared to simply voting. Is this the system which is now being proposed by those rioting in the streets? Do any of them really believe they are going to get their way and Hillary Clinton will suddenly become the next President because they are rioting and destroying property? Lastly, what gives with the governors and mayors who are permitting such lawlessness? And lastly, enough with the ridiculous Trump supports the KKK or the Nazis or white supremacists of any stripe. That is no more true than Hillary Clinton being called a Communist or an Anarchist simply because some well-know Communist sympathizers or Anarchists came out supporting her, as I am sure there were at least a few. Just because some malcontent from any extreme on the political spectrum comes out in support does not make the candidate a supporter of the extremists represented by the particular claim of support. We do not control which crazies support a candidate and often cannot fathom even why there might be any reason for such support. Donald Trump has little to no actions in his past which infer in the slightest that he has a bigoted bone in his body. He is not a racist, anti-Semite, homophobe, sexist or even misogynist, though some might try to argue the last due to his action in decades past when male-female relations were quite different than today.

 

Anti Trump Demonstration

Anti-Trump Demonstration

 

Then there is the claim that the Electoral College is unfair as it grants a resident of Wyoming as carrying greater weight than a resident of California or Texas or New York or even Alaska. Oddly enough, that was the whole idea of the Electoral College. When the Constitution was drawn up the founding Fathers realized quite quickly that any candidate for President if they could win New York and Virginia by wide margins could lose nine of the remaining eleven states and still win the election. This, in their thoughtful minds, seemed to give Virginia and New York far too much power and they needed all the states to sign onto the new Constitution. Remember the Federated States of America was the dysfunctional governance where the Federal government was too weak to run the nation and the country was disintegrating. The Constitution was the grand compromise which gave the smaller states significant additional representation in choosing a President simply by adding two Electoral Votes, one for each Senator, to the number of Representatives and thus making it so all the states would be represented in the White House. As the United States grew and Wyoming became the least settled state per square mile, Wyoming receives the greatest benefit of the Electoral College system and California is likely harmed the most followed by Texas, but it all works in the end as Wyoming still has but three Electoral Votes and is seldom the deciding state. We need remember that without the Electoral College system the United States would never have come into being and the Federated States of America would have dissolved into individual states and more resembled Europe economically, militarily and in all too many other ways, Alaska would still be a part of Russia, Hawaii would still be a Spanish colony or an independent nation, Texas would either be its own nation or still part of Mexico after Santa Anna beat the Texas militias. And Wyoming would still be Wyoming all alone and pretty much ignored as nobody would want to take the time or energy to conquer her. Wyoming would be pretty much unchanged as any invading army would need to defeat a number of states before reaching Wyoming and then would stand little chance against the mountain men who know their woodlands and highlands very well and live as they please even now. Lastly, Wyoming has some of the most breathtaking views that can be found anywhere within the United States, and that comes from having lived there.

 

In closing, can we do something which has gotten the United States through tougher and more distressing times than anything a President Trump can cause. The country is nowhere near as divided as many seem to wish to have it appear. You might have heard of this other time when brother took up arms against brother and the nation was divided into the blue and the grey and we fought a Civil War, a real Civil War and not just civil unrest. We realize you believe you are fighting a civil war, but trust that you are not and should you actually become that violent, well, let us just warn that you would not like how that would end. The United States survived President Grant, it survived President James K. Polk who did not even campaign but was elected due to two things, the party he represented had the election in the bag and his opponent ran on the slogan of, “Who the h3ll is James K. Polk?” Perhaps if his opponent, who is just as nameless today as then, had campaigned with his name in a slogan instead of his opposition, perhaps he might have won but instead all anyone knew was both sides were preoccupied with James K. Polk. He ran against Henry Clay who was one of the founding members of the Whig Party. We even survived a President who pretended to have a middle name, well, middle initial because all the great Presidents had a middle name. Thus we had President Harry S (for nothing) Truman sometimes stated by his contemporaries as Harry ask for nothing Truman because persuading Harry Truman was wasted effort as he drew his own course and never deviated from a decision and was the reason for a sign on his desk which faced the door reading, “The Buck Stops Here.” We survived a President who was an avid big game hunter, went hunting with the Czar of Russia and spent as little time in Washington as possible, a man who despite great wealth gathered a group of roughnecks and went to war because it would be jolly fun, yep, President Theodore Roosevelt. The United States has survived virtually every kind of President imaginable, Harvard educated, Yale educated and self-taught, raised in luxury and poverty, military men and pacifists and somehow the United States has developed a life of its own which manages to always return to a central pillar based on equal freedoms being granted to ever wider portions of the nation’s peoples. One example was due to President elect Donald Trump who opened his Palm Beach resort called Mar-a-Lago; he insisted that it be opened to everybody including specifically Jews and Blacks, something never permitted in “exclusive” resorts, clubs and other venues breaking this barrier which held into the 1990s. The outrageous fact here is not that it was Donald Trump who broke the barrier and fought a running battle with the city officials for over a decade because of his inclusive policies but that Palm Beach had such rules in place into the 1990s and was still regarded as an all American resort town, now that is unbelievable and a truth that needs more emphasis. Still, if we all calm down we will survive the coming four years and then we can review whether Donald Trump was more President or clown and if clown, replace him and get on with life. Thank you.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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