In The News

A few stories I’m following right now:

  • I’ve been critical of some of Trump’s cabinet choices. But my first impression of Mattis, the proposed Secretary of Defense, is positive. He opposes torture, supports a two-state solution for Israel, recognizes that the Iran deal is flawed but that tearing it up would be a mistake. His approach to Iraq was a big reason the surge worked and his musings show an active and sharp mind. He has been willing to praise or criticize politicians from both sides. Moreover, Trump said that one thing that impressed him was that Mattis opposes torture, which Trump ostensibly favors, and made a good argument against it. One of the big concerns with a President is that he will surround himself with Yes Men. Mattis is definitely not a Yes Man. He’s a good choice. But the thought process behind the pick is also encouraging.
  • Of course, he’s still thinking about Bolton for State, so it’s not all roses.
  • Trump sent out a tweet the other day saying that flag burning should be banned and come with a loss of citizenship. You can pretty much guess my response to this: I’m with Scalia.
  • Of course, Hillary Clinton her own damned self once co-sponsored an anti-flag burning bill. No matter what Trump does, let’s not lose sight of what the alternative was like.
  • Neither Obama nor Biden will attend Castro’s funeral. Good.
  • Trump’s deal to keep Carrier from shipping jobs to Mexico (actually, Pence’s deal) does not impress me. It’s a $7 million tax break specifically for Carrier to keep 1000 jobs in Indiana. It’s crony capitalism and an example of what we shouldn’t be doing. We have an entire economy run on backdoor tax breaks, regulatory holidays, subsidies and special dispensations. What we need to do is make America a better place for all businesses through comprehensive and universal regulatory and tax reform.
  • However, I suspect the Carrier deal is a preview of Trump’s Presidency. He’ll make a huge fuss about little things he does like saving a thousand jobs, to give the impression that he’s doing good (which, to be fair, all Presidents do). The real good will have to come from Congress, who have the power to unshackle our economy.

Comments are closed.

  1. CM

    Bolton would be a disaster as your Reason piece makes very clear. The guy is a nut, who has had his day (a day he shouldn’t have had to begin with). Wtf would anyone want to restore that destructive Iraq war era nonsense? Oh that’s right, because libs will hate it…..and that appears to actually be a relevant consideration to some.

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  2. InsipiD

    If Trump wants to personally go all Bruce Lee on people who burn the flag, I don’t have a problem with that.  I do have a problem with putting them in jail for it.  You must be free to be as big an idiot as you want to be.  As long as your flag burning doesn’t set my house ablaze, carry on.

    Against all odds, Trump is really looking like a winner right now, and the recount sure seems like petty idiocy after the Carrier thing was announced (limited though it is).

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  3. grady

    I don’t like the idea of outlawing flag burning either.  It was only a tweet from Trump, not policy.  It portrays a sentiment within a lot of Americans that destroying/disgracing our national symbol is a disgusting act.  But when we have a national conversation about freedom of speech and freedom of expression in this country, maybe the right and left can realize that emotional tirades on the internet, “hate speech”, microaggressions or any other things that you don’t want to read/hear are also expressions that anyone should be able to do.  That also includes everyone’s right to judge you based on what you said or did.

    When I went to college we were supposed to be challenged by opposing ideas.  I’m not so sure that everyone is mature enough to handle that concept.

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  4. grady

    “The real good will have to come from Congress, who have the power to unshackle our economy.”

    Trump seems like he will keep a spotlight on immigration, healthcare reform and the economy (taxes/tariffs/etc) as a minimum.  Let’s hope that Congress does work together enough to get some legislation that works for the country.

    Or are we going to see another 4 years of partisan BS?

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  5. AlexInCT

    The good news is, the Ryan-led Congress seems ready to undo a lot of the midnight regulations that Obama passed.

    Lets pray they do, and they also get rid of Obamacare for sure.

    The bad news: Pelosi got to keep her job. The Democrats really haven’t learned anything.

    Bad news for who? The democrats I would surmise. Pelosi winning this again to me was another victory for those of us that want the D.C. machine to die an ugly death, and this woman is the most well equipped and prepared to do so from within while she tries to fuck the little people over in the name of helping them. Can’t be happier with this choice I tell ya.

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  6. AlexInCT

    But my first impression of Mattis, the proposed Secretary of Defense, is positive.

    To me, he is the best choice possible to fix a military that has basically been run by people put in charge over the last 8 years whom’s most important qualifications were loyalty to the king in D.C. instead of the US, leading to shit like this.

    BTW the military is in the state of disrepair and disorder it finds itself today, as well as facing an inability to actually function as a military force, by design. Over the last 8 years it to was fundamentally transformed from a hard core force with experienced people and top notch gear to an overworked and under prepared entity which was ordered to tackle such big problems as making ships steam using recycled french fried oil to fight global warming, and made to waste manpower, equipment and ammunition on fights they were not allowed to decisively win. In short, Obama has made sure to leave the US military as inefficient and ineffective as the left managed to make it after Vietnam, right when the USSR was expanding its influence all over the globe. And wouldn’t you know that the world today, with the exception of actually really being far more unstable and dangerous, looks much the same?

    Things that make you go hmmmm……

    Anyway, this guy has made awesome quotes. I particularly agree with the first and the last quotes in the article:

    “Be polite, be professional, but have a plan to kill everybody you meet.”

    The military’s job is to show the flag, and then when the enemy decides to show its true colors, to mow them down without mercy. War today has been turned into a video game where people expect it to be sanitize with minimal use of brutal and effective force. Because of that we have more of it than we should have. It is supposed to be a horrible thing, and you get that when you fight to win, breaking the enemy’s spirit to fight, by rolling over them without mercy. You also get a lot less of it when the bad guy knows they will be dealt with without mercy.

    “PowerPoint makes us stupid.”

    I work in corporate America, and I see what this tool has wreaked. It is indeed a tool intended to make stupid people make decisions without having to have the qualifications to understand the complex things they make decisions on. It is no wonder that the elite managerial class loves the stupid thing.

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