Beyond the Cusp

April 5, 2017

Letters from Our Friend

 

A friend of ours sent us some of his musings on Donald Trump. He was amongst those who voted for President Trump more as a vote against Madam Hillary than for The Donald. He decided initially to just take a close listen to President Trump’s speech to Congress and from there gave the story of his relationship leading to his vote. We turned the two into the more sensible order with the reaction to the speech second and his commentary on Trump from the start. We asked his permission to use them which he gratefully gave. We all agreed that his relating might clear the picture to some degree for others who also tread his path during the elections. With no further ado, we present his thoughts starting with the beginning.

 

After a year and three quarters of watching our Twitter-in-Chief operate and manipulate his way to the top, I just want to engage in a brief review.

 

It all started with his announcement of his candidacy for the position of President of the United States. I didn’t think he had any chance at all. The main street media (MSM) covered it and viewed him and his candidacy basically as a joke. He was just a businessman, an entertainer. As a politician he was a neophyte, an amateur who will quickly get his clock cleaned and his comeuppance from the real politicians. Trump was nothing but a side show, a flash in the pan, a one-off who will soon crash and burn. His candidacy was merely entertaining fodder to sell more copies. Much to the delight of the MSM, Trump spoke and said some of the awfullest outrageous things I have ever heard from the mouth of a politician. I thought that he was toast. The MSM thought he was toast. His candidacy rose in the polls to lead all the Republican candidates.

 

Then came the debates. Trump was at center stage because he led in the polls. He held his own. And he continued to speak. He managed to insult, in an ugly manner, any and all of the candidates that were challenging him in the polls. He went after their integrity, their reputation, their families. I thought he was toast. The MSM thought he was toast. Trump continued to gain in popularity.

 

Then came the primaries. Trump started winning. He didn’t win them all. He won most and scored well in the ones he didn’t win. And he continued speaking, making awful outrageous comments about any one and anything that challenged his lead. I couldn’t believe that he was still in the race, still in the lead. He should have been toast. The MSM started going apoplectic. Trump had become the focus and the center of their coverage of the 2016 Presidential campaign. The MSM didn’t understand. They thought they were all powerful, that they controlled the thought and voting behavior of the ‘people’, the public that they wrote for and spoke to. They thought they were so powerful that they could determine the candidates, and the winners, and the losers of the elections. The MSM started going all negative, all the time on Trump. Trump should have been toast. I couldn’t believe that he wasn’t toast. And the size of Trump’s campaign rallies continued to increase, although the MSM never reported on it. And Trump’s popularity grew.

 

Then Trump secured the Republican nomination for President. The MSM now went into full anti Trump mode. It was as if they had declared war on Trump and his candidacy. It was all negative, all of the time when reporting on Trump, his candidacy, and his campaign. Hillary was all but declared the winner. Trump had no chance. He was unfit, mentally unstable, a loose cannon, a racist, a misogynist, and an anti-Semite, a business failure, and a quitter. And he was stupid and unintelligent, as well. These characterizations were and are totally bogus. Most of the other charges against him were unsubstantiated or blatantly false. So I forced myself to listen to one of his campaign speeches. Parts of it I didn’t agree with, parts of it I liked, on other parts I had no opinion; but overall it met with my approval. I read one of his position papers. Parts of it I didn’t agree with, parts of it I liked, on other parts I had no opinion; but overall it met with my approval. As for Trump’s behavior, he continued saying and tweeting what seemed to me to be whatever popped into his head at that moment. Some were entertaining; some were awful, disgusting, and absolutely indefensible. I watched a Fox News interview of some commentators; and one of them, I think it was Laura Ingraham, who was asked, ‘now that Trump has secured the nomination, what advice would you give him for his campaign against Hillary’. She said she would advise him to act more presidential, that he should tone down his abrasive talk and espouse more on his political positions; that he should be nicer to the Press and to his opponent. However, her final comment was an observation that posed the question as to why should Trump change any of his campaign behavior. So far it has been highly successful. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Then all of a sudden, Trump no longer gained ground in the polls. It seemed that all the polls, all the time had Hillary as the winner.

 

Then Trump won. I was shocked. How could all those polls and pollsters been so wrong. Did their biases against Trump cloud their reporting. Did the MSM intentionally lie. Trump spent about half of what Hillary spent. And I think it was mostly his own money. Trump used the MSM to garner free advertising. He led them around by their collective noses and they followed like sheep. This relationship between Trump and the MSM continues in the same mode. The MSM still has not come to grips of the reality of Trump’s victory. They don’t believe that they were played. They still publish unsubstantiated and false news items about Trump. (The story of Trump and the prostitute doing an unmentionable act in a bed that the Obamas allegedly slept in is the most egregious one; that Trump is an anti-Semite is so blatantly false that it doesn’t require comment.) If the MSM lied so baldly during the presidential campaign, or maybe they only produced biased news, or possibly they were just incompetent, why should they be believed now. The MSM has not come to grips with the possibility that they are not as powerful and influential as they believe themselves to be.

 

Trump is Trump. He is still as obnoxious as ever saying things that are indefensible or simply beyond outrageous. My faith in the MSM was not shattered. I never fully believed them anyway. But now it seems to me that in reality they are no better than the tabloid press, those newspapers that publish stories about UFOs and alien abductions, and stories about celebrity gossip. Trump still plays the MSM. It had been big news about Trump being in bed with Putin and the Russians, that the Russians enabled Trump’s victory in November. So Trump tweeted that Obama ordered the bugging of Trump Towers and the narrative of the entire story changed directions. I have to admire Trump. He may be the best ‘player’ to have ever been elected President of the United States.

 

All hail the ‘player’-in-chief.

 

President Trump Addressing the United States Congress

President Trump Addressing the United States Congress

 

And this is his review of President Trump’s speech to Congress.

 

I think that I finally got it. I understand, maybe.

 

I watched Trump’s speech to Congress the other night (28 February 2017). Basically, I liked it. Nearly everything he said, I liked. I can’t think of anything in particular that disappointed me, except maybe that he mentioned Israel. I would have preferred that he had not mentioned Israel at all. The speech appears to have been positively received by the American public. I liked that he focused on the economic well-being and the physical well-being of the US citizens. I liked that Trump acknowledged that his constituency is the American public, not the citizens of other countries. Trump is definitely quite comfortable with the concept of the nation/state as the basis of governance.

 

During the speech when the camera panned to the Democratic members of Congress, most of what I saw were their sour faces. At times I could understand their disappointment. Most of what they felt was holy, now lay shattered in shards at their feet. At times it appeared to me that the Democrats/progressives/socialists are on the wrong side of history. I felt that the Democrats could easily be saying that famous quote from Walt Kelly’s famous cartoon character, Pogo, “We have met the enemy and he is us”

 

But as I perused the disappointed Democrats, I began to understand this issue from another point of view. That point of view involved Maslow’s pyramid, or Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. The Democrats talk about bathroom usage, gender equality, group identity rights, civil rights, equality of results. All these items are noble and righteous. Trump talks about the physical security of the individual, the economic well-being of the individual. The items on the Democrat’s list are those at the top of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. The items on Trump’s list are at the base of Maslow’s pyramid. According to Maslow, the base of the pyramid must be settled before issues above can be dealt with. It is obvious to me that many US citizens, if not most of them, are more embroiled in the issues of the physiological and safety that Trump talks about as opposed to the Democrat’s issues of esteem and self-actualization.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

March 10, 2017

Trump Mar-a-Lago Conflict of Interest

 

The conflict over Mar-a-Lago and President Trump spending most weekends and even (gasp) having Cabinet officers meet with him at this private club which Trump continues to (gasp) own and (gasp) make money from the paying guests who he has even been seen meeting and enjoying time joking and (gasp) they pay to belong to Mar-a-Lago some two-hundred-thousand-dollars per year and these rich members have an easy path to reach, talk and socialize with the President. This is influence by the rich members of this club. There has never been such access for the rich to have like (gasp) Mar-a-Lago (gasp) and President Obama would never have had such exclusive only access to where he spent time. Perhaps we should breathe a little easier and take a step back and look at the reality and not the hyperventilating hyperbole. I guess it was all common people who were not wealthy who had access to other Presidents who spent time at Martha’s Vineyard amongst the luxury resorts and privately owned cabins and estates or amongst all those yachts all which honestly just reek of high wealth and snobbery at the least equal if not more-so than Mar-a-Lago. The difference is the Presidents staying at Martha’s Vineyard often stayed at the mansion of some paltry multi-millionaire which could never have been as bad as staying at one’s own resort. But what actually galls the leftists is that President Trump also makes money off owning the resort where he also owns his own luxury suite and that he actually has Cabinet members meet with him at the resort he owns though he likely allows the Cabinet members stay for free, and that probably also upsets these currently perpetually upset. But let us look a little closer at some more reality which the left will contest the validity, but we checked and these are actual truths that follow.

 

Martha’s Vineyard

Martha’s Vineyard

 

The problem is that President Trump did not force everything using his name to change the name on the building such as the Trump Towers around the world or that he did not divest himself of his entire and total wealth and investments. This, they claim, is tantamount to the selling of the Presidency. Well, let us look at the actual requirements for a President to do in order to assume the office. Actually let’s concentrate on one thing which is not a requirement. When a person assumes the Presidency there is no requirement for them to divest themselves from any properties, companies they own or investments. They are not required to surrender their control over their investments. The reason most Presidents have placed their investments under the control of a neutral blind trust with an investment company simply was to avoid any temptation to use their knowledge from the office to influence their investments. The removing their connection to their investing is probably wise but a President is not required to completely distance themselves from all business and other financial interests. Does anybody honestly believe that George Washington allowed Mount Vernon to stop raising crops, released all the people working at Mount Vernon and divested himself from all investments? How about John Adams? Do you think he closed all of his business interests in Boston and stopped all actions at his estate? How about Franklin Delano Roosevelt and his wealth and business interests? If you have a sneaky feeling that these Presidents continued to allow their business interests and investments to make profits, then you are correct and that is because the President is not required to sacrifice their wealth just because they assumed the office of President. Imagine that, just becoming President does not mean that one must sacrifice everything when taking office, wow!

 

Why don’t we get down to the real crime which President Trump has committed. He is not a political leftist and he defeated the left’s candidate, the squeaky clean Hillary Clinton who has never committed a shady or compromising act in her entire life and has led an exemplary life with unprecedented accomplishments during her political career (gag). Benghazi had nothing to do with Clinton and the foreign contributions to the Clinton Foundation had no connection to the fact that it appeared like Hillary Clinton was in line to be the next President of the United States. The fact that the contributions came to a crashing halt when she lost the election was simply coincidence. All the revelations from the leaked e-mails from the Democrat Central Committee (that was leaked, not hacked) of corruption and coercion which denied Bernie Sanders any hope of becoming the Democrat candidate for President did not tarnish Hillary Clinton’s nomination. We could go on to the leaks and hacks from Wikileaks, not the Russians, which added so much fuel to the fire already burning down the Clinton campaign and the fact that Hillary Clinton campaigned predominantly in states where she was already guaranteed to win including spending most of the final three weeks campaigning in California and almost totally ignored Ohio, Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania which were the states which determined the election. Further, the fact that Donald Trump campaigned largely on issues while Hillary Clinton campaigned on personal attacks on Trump could not have had anything to do with her loss. And lastly, where Donald Trump defined the fundamental issues which many Americans in the general population across a broader spectrum which included ending illegal immigration, boosting the economy, increasing jobs and actually identified Islamist Extremist Terrorism as a threat to the United States; Hillary Clinton mostly accused Donald Trump as the biggest threat to the United States and promised to continue the economic programs of President Barack Obama, an economic policy most claimed had failed.

 

What is interesting is that the central idea behind Hillary Clinton’s campaign, namely that Donald Trump posed the greatest threat to the people of the United States and that Trump did not deserve to be President, was unfit for the office, was basically a racist hateful person who was a fascist and finally that the idea of a President Trump should be such an anathema to the citizens of the United States that anything and everything should be considered allowable in order to prevent such an eventuality. That Hillary Clinton was the nation’s savior from Donald Trump and was why she should be elected, is also the basic tone of the leftist continuous tantrum which we have witnessed since the election. The outrage started immediately after the election results were announced and the predictions of his being a complete failure and his administration being in disarray actually began before the Inauguration. Since the Inauguration we have heard a constant drumbeat demanding President Trump be impeached and that Vice President Pence needs to go at the same time as well as Speaker of the House Ryan and the list would probably continue on down the rest of the order of succession until they reached an acceptable individual which would be the first Democrat. Then if that Democrat proved not to be sufficiently to the left they would come under attack as well with demands they be impeached and this would continue until they either got a verifiable leftist or Hillary Clinton, which would be impossible as she is nowhere to be found on the order of succession. The reasoning behind the full bore rejection of President Trump is partially manufactured and based in the idea that if sufficient disruption can be brought to bear on the American public, that come the next election they will do the correct thing, elect the media and establishment candidate, also known as the leftist, socialist candidate. This has been the leftist tactic throughout the ages and usually leads to fascist governance where there is one final election that the leftists win and then they form a dictatorship. Should these riots and other tactics succeed, then what we are currently witnessing is the downfall and end of the American experiment and it will die as was predicted by political scientists where they have seen that historically democracies, including republics, die between two and four hundred years after they rise from the tyranny they defeated. This is called the Tytler Cycle of Power in Governance talked about here. Let us hope that this is not the signal that we are reaching the end of civility and the end of what has been called the Great American Experiment in Self Government. When the United States was first formed the monarchies of Europe claimed that it would fail and they would crawl back to Europe pleading for guidance because the common man was incapable of ruling themselves for long. It would be a shame to find out they were correct but simply got the time frame wrong.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

October 23, 2016

Barack Obama’s Wild Search for Any Legacy

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President Barack Obama entered office with even a great number of Europeans having sky high hopes for his future. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize largely due to his soaring rhetoric describing his desires and designs for a world blanketed in peace rather than strife, free of nuclear weapons rather than bristling with them, shared bounty benefitting all replacing areas torn by hunger and want, and his fresh message promising hope replacing despair. There appeared to be other areas of the world which also caught Obamaitis, a feeling of great hope due to dulcet tones of rhythmic rhymes and rhetoric promising the end of deprivation and the opening for all a grand cornucopia providing great giving filling the world with divine satisfactions and serenity, comforts and calm, lullabies and love. The world had to be at the leading edge of the Age of Aquarius.

 

 

This expectation of greatness and having found the leader for the new century who would wipe away all the old and stodgy ideas which presumably underlined the policies and failings of his predecessor, George W. Bush led to the reelection as if the expectations which had begun to fade could be brought to fulfillment if just the people would show their support and promise to stay the course with full support and continued adulation. Americans, as a whole, virtually all hoped that President Obama would be the President that all America could stand shoulder-to-shoulder with and repair the real problems facing the nation. Even, or possibly because of, many who initially feared that Obama would rule as what they perceived as an extreme leftist progressive anti-American still grabbed on to this prayer, this hope. I know as I was one such who had predicted that President Obama would be a President Jimmy Carter on steroids. I was wrong as I missed the part which would rival President Lyndon Baines Johnson with the steamrolling over all opposition; Constitution be damned. So now we sit in the closing months of a wounded Presidency which failed in even its own measuring stick. Gone beyond repair is Cap and Trade, Carbon Credits, the end of coal for energy, fracking continues, livable wage remains a dream, government run healthcare is in a shambles and the final crash is still ahead, universal nuclear disarmament is dead with the promise of proliferation like never before is about to spread these weapons across the most unstable Middle East and into North Africa (MENA) and, worst of all, there are numerous more wars with entire nations in various stages of disintegration as in Libya, Syria, Yemen and the Ukraine and the world seems closer than ever to the Eve of Destruction.

 

 

Musical interludes aside, the world is far more violent with more conflict and more nations in a state of complete anarchy where the governance has either disintegrated or no longer cares or represents the population. The continued anarchy and destruction in Syria and Libya can be indirectly or even directly attributed to actions or lack thereof by the United States under the directions of President Obama and largely the State Department. There have been reports online and in the mainstream media of recommendations made by the Pentagon and the Joint Chiefs of Staff being ignored and even directly countermanded by the White House. Examples of such advice being completely ignored which led directly to many of today’s problems include pulling almost every American military force after refusing to provide a new set of terms and protections for the troops as President Obama refused to permit the Pentagon to work with the Iraqi government leaving the State Department to negotiate which was postponed until a mere ten weeks before the then existing agreement lapsed. Then there was the shifting, sliding and finally fading to nothing Red Line in the Sand to bring destruction down on Syrian leader Bashir al-Assad if he unleashed chemical weapons. The final example we will give was the entire concept of leading from behind which directly led to the decapitation of Libyan governance without providing even a modicum of force in place providing time to form new governance resulting in tribal internal warfare tearing the nation apart.

 

Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Pentagon

Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Pentagon

 

To the present we are witnessing a change and President Obama taking the lead very quietly while attempting to force what his passivity failed to accomplish. We have witnessed stronger language targeting Russian President Putin while arming rebels more directly, though which rebels has been kept somewhat vague. Some reports claim they are al-Nusra and others who were once claiming allegiance to al-Qaeda but have since renounced any allegiances. Some unofficial sources not aligned with the State Department or Pentagon has shown alliances with some of these rebels with the Islamic State. Even more troubling has been the unprincipled support using American air power of Turkey President Erdogan bombing the one group which deserved the greatest support, the Kurdish Militias (Peshmerga پێشمەرگە), who have been the most successful against the Islamic State all the way back to their initial ISIS or ISIL stage and the main force rescuing the Yazidi while the world governments sat silent feigning helplessness with one exception which has provided light weapons, anti-tank weapons and special forces to train Kurdish fighters, a nation which must remain unnamed. President Obama has made the known fallacious claim that Turkey is fighting the Islamic State when the reality is they are attempting to wipe out the Kurdish forces and people in a genocidal war and assisting the Islamic State which has recovered Aleppo from Kurdish control. These anti-Kurdish efforts are pushing some Kurds to seek protection with Islamist forces they once fought against. Talk of turning friends into enemies, what a great strategy.

 

President Obama still claims his brilliant nuclear treaty with Iran, which even the French had to be beaten into submission after initially vetoing the agreement, prevents Iran from attaining nuclear weapons. The statement can only be made valid if one adds, “while I am President,” onto the end. Even the White House had admitted that Iran will be fully nuclear capable and free of any restrictions after just over a decade from now. Then we have the most recent evidence of the hard-line being taken in response to a pair of missiles fired from Yemen originating in the area held by Iranian backed Houthis Rebels. The American Naval forces were freed to respond in kind. Further the United States Navy was ordered to cross into the expanded regions now claimed by China after they built a number of new islands placing military assets including artillery and anti-ship missiles in an effort to control an important Asian trade route. This new and unprecedented stance by President Obama has come with minimal if any inclusion of the Pentagon or Joint Chiefs of Staff other than to relay the orders and is being executed in order to shore up support for Democrat candidates in the coming elections. This also permits Hillary Clinton to imply that she may have had a hand in this new direction by the White House to accommodate her stronger stance in foreign policy. It is all a feint to make her appear to separate from the lead from behind strategy when in reality she will not lead at all with one exception which is worthy of discussion before closing this article.

 

A President Hillary Clinton will continue to bow to Iranian hegemonic plans in the MENA region and continue to snub Egypt, Israel, Jordan and other allies unless they curry favor as was the way to play when she was Secretary of State with higher entry fees as she is now the President. Further, she will allow China to extend their hegemonic desires throughout the western Pacific Ocean and into the Indian Ocean. This will revive an ancient animosity between China and India, an India which is likely to surpass China as the most populous nation within a decade or two. Hillary Clinton will further aid the influx of Islamic immigrants all but unvetted into Europe, mostly western Europe, while also increasing the rate for accepting immigrants from across MENA and including the Horn of Africa, Pakistan, Afghanistan and other Islamic nations except Iran, they need to remain strong with a large and capable military with secret side deals done without Congressional oversight or knowledge when possible. There is one place where Hillary Clinton will not only stand strong but will seek new venues to pressure, Putin and Russia. For reasons known only to the least sane amongst us, there has been an undertone softly growing demanding that Russian President Putin be brought low and to bend and surrender to the “equality of women” and raise the position of Russian women to their “rightful place” in Russian society. This is partly the demand for a “No Fly Zone” in Syria as this would soon lead to a direct confrontation. Do not doubt that any Russian fighter caught entering such a zone, even after dropping their ordinance and simply transgressing on way back to base, they would be intercepted and very likely fired upon or, even worse, shot from the sky using missiles pressing the Russians to respond. Even if Putin would take such a situation and apologize, explain and request for unarmed aircraft, after dropping ordinance, for Russian pilots to use the “safe zone” for returning to base, the request would be refused bluntly and with no regard for any damage as such would be intentional. What is the end desired? We wish we knew!

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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