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In addition to fomenting race riots, lying about murdered ambassadors, and shaking down random police departments on trumped up racism charges, it turns out the Obama administration did not simply spy on our allies.  It spied on American political “enemies” of the regime.  Trump was right!  And the main offender was none other than Youtube Fantasist, Susan Rice.  

FISA wiretaps are supposed to be carefully controlled, excluding information on Americans caught up in the dragnet, and “masked” before being wildly distributed.  She went out of her way to unmask these talks–none of which incidentally has been proven to be illegal, immoral, or otherwise problematic.  This widely disseminated gossip was supposed to be under lock and key, but we were governed the last 8 years by extremely peculiar people who had little regard for our traditions.  Trump at least, for once, is not engaged in typical Republican unilateral disarmament.

In a normal country, this would be a scandal of enormous proportions, on every front page, with people calling for her prosecution.  But we’re not a normal country, and the press long ago abandoned its core responsibilities.  It’s serious though.

It seems almost every time Trump exaggerates, he is proven right.  Yesterday it was that he would win.  Today it’s the allegations Obama abused sensitive intelligence gathering to attack a political opponent.  Maybe someone will study the numbers of aliens voting (legal aliens can’t vote either, remember), and it’ll get close the margin of “popular vote” victory for Her Highness.

Double Standards are offensive everywhere and to everyone.  Trump simply had the temerity to voice the collective “id” for the forgotten people about how much this happened, both during Obama’s administration, by the Press supporting Hillary, and in day to day life.

I haven’t had much to write lately.  I guess I’m a good example of the criticism that the GOP is a better opposition party than a governing party.  At least personally, I find offensive things in the world and the media easier to write about, whereas good governance–broadly understood–just lets me focus on other interests.  Politics, after all, is chiefly an instrumental good, one that creates space for real life to flourish:  art, literature, music, family, creativity, commerce, and friendship.  And Trump, so far, is doing a good job.

That said, the bipartisan hatred of him is likely rooted in something interesting I read recently–I can’t find the link sadly–that the large permanent bureaucracy of the government means that elections largely don’t matter.  Indeed, when coupled with judicial supremacy, 99% of what government might in an ordinary country control is out of the hands of the governed.  We can’t decide who gets to be in our country, who gets to go to which public schools, whether to have war or peace, whether to permit abortion, gay marriage, or much else, whether and in what ways we may associate with one another privately, and for 3/4 or more of the federal budget, whether tax dollars are spent one way or another. These matters have either been decided by others, rendered off limits on the basis of dubious readings of the Constitution, or otherwise through bipartisan consensus of the political leadership, are deemed matters on which the will of the governed is wholly irrelevant.

And the meaning of Trump is that an election happened where something might actually change.  Something tangible and real on the main matters of bipartisan consensus:  immigration, trade, and our muscular (but largely unhelpful) foreign policy.

The Russia hacking allegations have now gone full circle.

For months we were told, mostly through leaks and insinuations, that something really bad was afoot.  This information was coming from somewhere, and apparently it came from information obtained by investigators using a FISA warrant that the Obama DOJ approved. Apparently, the initial request was not even granted by the notoriously easy-to-please FISA Court.  Then it happened finally in October.  Obama denies “ordering” it, which is an enormous weasel word, because Loretta Lynch does not do something like this without notifying her boss.

What was being looked into? Who was being looked into? What was told to get this warrant? And, even if not being looked at directly, who was caught up in the net?  After all, spies don’t advertise their status–bad form and all–and Trump and anyone associated with him might have been heard speaking or meeting with someone on the FISA target list.

Trump this weekend had the temerity to say, “What the hell is going on, here?” And the media now demands proof.  They demand proof even when they themselves earlier acknowledged the wiretaps existed if not of Trump, at least of his close associates. And they demand proof after the Russian Hacking “proof” is so incredibly vague and misleading, as the definite connection of individual Russian hackers to the Russian government has not and cannot be made. Indeed, their entire “dossier” on the hacking of DNC emails was laughably lacking in detail and attribution.

Finally, known liar James Clapper has acknowledged after months of digging and looking they’ve come up with absolutely nothing on this Russia business. It’s all just a massive character assassination campaign.

Even if someone in the Russian FSB did coordinate hacking of Podesta’s emails, it didn’t amount to much because, while illegal, it happens all the time, and it didn’t influence the election, and, most importantly, did not come from or ever get coordinated with the Trump Campaign.  I know this because someone would have said so already if it did! Finally, I’m extremely skeptical of Obama’s denials; Obama bugged Merkel, offending journalists, and the entire American people with his NSA spying program.  And I’m mostly nonplussed about Russia’s activities here because (a) it exposed mendacity and duplicitly by DNC officials by releasing emails and (b) it happens all the timne, as we were told by Obama defending his spying of Merkel and by the defenders of Jonathan Pollard.

There is no there, there, except in one particular, the one Trump pointed out in his offending Tweets:  Obama allowed his political opponent (or his close associates) to be wiretapped in the middle of an election on the flimsiest of pretexts.

Theand Big Media campaign against Trump is about to collapse under its own weight, because the ultimate findings of its spying campaign are completely minimal, while the manner and method of the spying are damning to everyone involved:  the FBI, James Comey, Obama, the media, and all the Never Trumpers who breathlessly repeated this implausible bullshit.

Just by way of roundup, there are some great and in depth pieces on the subject today.

Byron York at the Washington Examiner.

Andrew McCarthy’s piece today (and last week).

And Robert Barnes on the potential culpability of Obama administration officials.

 

Now they’ve turned on Sessions, whom they tried to play “gotcha” with regarding a meeting he had, as Senator, with the Russian ambassador.  It appears he misspoke, and he has said so today.  He’s smart to recuse himself, which I think people generally should do to avoid the appearance of impropriety in positions of power.

The problem with this entire line of attack by ex-Obama people and Deep State elements at the CIA is that the underlying substance is absolute nonsense that no one believes.  It’s an attempt to delegitimize Trump and his subordinates, and it’s laughably stupid. Hillary lost the election all by herself.  The ties of Wikileaks and Russia and the election itself are tenuous at best. Wikileaks *did* expose duplicity in the DNC, which led to at least one resignation, but the main issues of the election were open for all to see.  In fact, the revelations from Wikileaks are hard to summarize and barely mattered to voters–I don’t quite get their significance myself, and I’m a close follower of these things.  And Russia, like everyone else, almost certainly thought Hillary would win and Trump would lose.

Trump openly said he wants friendlier relations with Russia, and the American voters heard that to the extent they cared–I agree with him for example–and voted accordingly.   No one is particularly scared of Russia.  Indeed, the Cold War has been over for 25 years.  Democrats seem more scared of a Christian and nationalist Russia than they ever were of the far-more-hostile Soviet Empire.
Democrats seem to have forgotten their internationalist pretensions.  Remember Kerry saying how they loved him in France.  Other countries, not least Mexico, weighed in on the election too.  Does anyone doubt Hillary’s people occasionally talked to them? Or Israelis? Britons? French? Or other foreign officials concerned with the election?  Let’s not forget, Hillary’s foundation took in tons of money from the UAE, Tunisians, and Saudis and God-knows-who-else in an obvious form of bribery.  But we’re supposed to be concerned a US Senator met with an Ambassador, which incidentally is something both ambassadors and senators are supposed to do?!?
Sessions is a very honorable man, as best I can tell.  He almost certainly misspoke, as the context of the question was contacts between Russia and the Trump Campaign.  That said, the underlying substance doesn’t matter to anyone.  It’s a sign of how insular and stupid these globalist haters are in that they think Americans are staying up at night worried about this, as if their cocktail party concerns for the “balance of power with Russia” matter to all but 5% of the electorate at most.  The only offensive thing about this line of attack is who it is coming from, likely ex-Obama people inside and outside of the government, who forgot that they and their team lost bigly in the election.
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Fake News Par Excellence

Trump and the Media

Trump’s tiff with the media this week was mostly a win.  For my entire lifetime, the press has almost uniformly abjured its core responsibility to tell the truth fairly and instead engaged in leftist information warfare.  Trump let them have it.  And, like so much else about Trump, one’s thoughts on this episode likely reflect one’s preexisting view of him:  he’s either a dangerous lunatic or a brash champion of the common people.

Whether Trump was impolitic or not, the media’s bad faith should not be deniable to anyone right of center.  It’s why we had so little reporting on the Fast and Furious scandal and constant, drumbeat-style repetition against the most minor scandals of Republicans. It’s why stories like Trayvon Martin or Ferguson designed to make whites and cops look bad are reported constantly and untruthfully to fit the “narrative, ” while we see under-reporting of black on white crime.  We hear about the national debt only during Republican administrations.  We don’t hear about the disastrous war in Yemen under Obama, but heard about Iraq constantly under Bush.  During the campaign, we heard little about Clinton’s email scandals–or her fraudulent actions in Whitewater or regarding cattle futures–while the media trotted out Trump’s ten year old jokes and ridiculous unverifiable accusations.  The media pulled out all the stops against Trump, but the people were wise to the game, and Trump won without ever pretending the media were anything other than what they really are:  the opposition.

On the whole, the media are dishonest, evil, malevolent people with a leftist agenda. They deserve no respect, no benefit of the doubt, and, on balance, they do more harm than good.  They are both a corrupt and corrupting institution.

Yes, we need freedom of the press, but that has nothing to do with media.  Anyone can report anything, and credentialism has nothing to do with it.  Indeed, the media are worse at it than ordinary people, because while professional journalists may know how to write or have established sources, their agenda blinds them.  In the age of blogs, big data, and twitter, the real truth often comes from obscure sources, personal experience, or primary documents getting out in other ways.  Of course, this is not ideal compared to a functioning, patriotic, and honest press corps, and yes there’s some frothing on the margins, with rumors circulating faster than they would otherwise, but, overall, the power of the legacy media as gate-keepers is over.

Trump’s blistering attack earlier this week, coupled with his rally in Melbourne today, are simply extensions of his successful electoral strategy.  It’s a strategy that reminds everyone who the media is and why most of what they say is not trustworthy, because they oppose what most ordinary people hold dear and that opposition is their foremost value, not honest reporting, balance, fairness, or anything else.  Trump’s strategy cuts out the middleman and gives unfiltered information to ordinary Americans.

Media and the Deep State

The media does not live on an island.  It’s part of, broadly speaking, the establishment:  the donors and leadership of the major parties, the universities, the CIA, the GS-14s, the think tanks, the Federal Reserve, Wall Street, the McCains and Petraeuses and Bushes and Clintons.

And those institutions and people share a broadly similar viewpoint on important matters:  pro-global trade, pro-immigration, pro-multiculturalism, pro-gay, pro-abortion, pro-feminism, pro-welfare-state, pro-“big,” pro-“maintaining international stability,” which all is collectively an anti-white, anti-Christian, anti-tradition, anti-private-property, anti-freedom, anti-small-business, and anti-Middle America  agenda.  In other words, their end product is the corporatist leftist smog that floats throughout our society, which affects everyone and everything.  It includes every school that un-names itself for Robert E. Lee, every “diversity awareness” seminar in corporate America, every jobless millennial in deep student debt after doing what she’s told by counselors and TV, every general who thinks its ridiculous to protect our own borders, but normal to protect those of Iraq, every Church that cares a lot about Islamic refugees but never mentions priests killed by Islamists, and all the rest.  It’s Davos People, the Cathedral, elites, or whatever term you prefer.

More dangerously for Trump and his agenda, the Establishment includes the permanent bureaucracy of the entire federal government, whether in administrative agencies like the EPA, DOJ, or DOL, but also many career DoD and CIA personnel.  And every president has found what is now being called the Deep State an obstacle.

Career civil service protection and the independence of quasi-legislative administrative agencies gives them power that would otherwise be in the hands of the executive.  We saw examples of this opposition when the Army dragged its feet in Kosovo for Clinton, in the State Department’s griping about the Iraq Campaign under George W. Bush, and in the Air Traffic Controller strike under Reagan.  Every president deals with this to some extent, but the resistance to Trump will likely be the most impressive yet, because unlike his predecessors, he came to power self consciously in opposition to this entire apparatus and the status quo  it has created.  Where the post-WWII establishment reflected a national, centrist consensus, today it reflects the globalist values of the corporate left.  As in the later days of the Iraq and Vietnam Wars, it also now reflects a significant gap between decision makers and the ordinary people.

Trump opposes the Establishment and all of what they’re about.  As he stated in his inaugural address, “What truly matters is not which party controls our government but whether our government is controlled by the people. January 20th, 2017 will be remembered as the day the people became the rulers of this nation again.”  He won because those institutions have lost legitimacy in the truest sense of the word:  they no longer reflect approval by the majority, they have failed to deliver the goods that their policies promised, and people feel that the Establishment is hostile to their way of life . . . and they’re right.

The Deep State’s Soft Coup

Trump has faced particular opposition from the intelligence agencies, who claimed a scalp in the form of proposed National Security Advisory, Michael Flynn.  Their actions here should be worrisome, because the power of the spy agencies is immense:  they can gather dirt through exotic means, leak it to the press,  and present information to make Trump appear either irresponsible or unable to control his subordinates.

They’ve employed this playbook in such varied locales as Libya and Ukraine, and now they’re employing it at home.  This used to worry many Americans back when it was used by Nixon against “domestic enemies” in the form of COINTELPRO program, but now that the left has become the Establishment, much like the Soviet KGB, the left sees the intelligence agencies as guardians of the elite and the status quo.  I’ve done some reading regarding the last days of the Soviet Union, and the most common complaint of ordinary people did not relate to abstract freedom, nor concern for their human rights, but the hypocrisy, double standards, and special privileges of an elite, who were seen as self-serving and arrogant. People don’t need to be well versed in political theory to know when they’re being screwed, and they’re doubly insulted when they’re being told simultaneously that they’re not.

Equally worrisome, Trump’s enemies have cheered on this soft coup, in spite of, or perhaps because of, its anti-democratic nature.   Bill Kristol, the prominent Republican analyst who founded The Weekly Standard, wrote on Twitter, “Obviously strongly prefer normal democratic and constitutional politics. But if it comes to it, prefer the deep state to the Trump state.”

Russia is just a prop in all this; the allegations against Flynn were flimsy, unsourced, and repeated breathlessly by the media and Trump’s enemies, but the recent hysteria directed against Russia–whether with regard to hacking the DNC or its actions in Crimea–are falling on deaf ears. Russia is not a communist country anymore with global ambitions, and people who were around during the Soviet Union’s prominence can easily see the difference.  Post-Soviet  Russia is also not a weak lackey to the West anymore, and they’re not so crazy about the West’s dictating how they deal with their neighbors and internal matters, such as gay rights, Islamic extremists, or meddlesome oligarchs. In addition, their traditionalism hits a positive note with the American Right; it is the “West” now fighting for transsexual rights and open borders to the Islamic World, and Russia is standing up for normalcy.  Thus where the Soviet Union (or Castro’s Cuba) had a progressive cachet, traditionalist white countries are always painted as nascent fascists.

Most Americans aren’t buying the Establishment’s propaganda on this or much else.  They don’t want wars in Syria to depose Assad, they don’t want war with Russia, they don’t want America to resemble Mexico City, and they don’t lose any sleep over deporting illegals.  In other words, they support what Trump said he will do, but the Deep State doesn’t like it and is trying to shame and bully and fear-monger them into supporting the status quo ante.

First, the Deep State believe in the Establishment’s views across the board, because they are coextensive with it. They want our money and troops and influence everywhere.   Second, they are self-interested, and know Trump is their enemy of business as usual.  Trump will reduce their influence, because he’ll shrink their portfolio. They’re not relevant in a world where American “leadership” doesn’t include wars in faraway places like Ossetia and Yemen.  Finally, they don’t want their sins exposed.  In addition to the Iran deal–which apparently Obama’s people left behind in the CIA are trying to protect–Flynn knew what they were up to in Syria, and the evidence points to something truly nefarious, namely tacit or possibly explicit support by the CIA for ISIS, which our government was ostensibly opposed to.  

Who Will Win?

Backing down on Flynn was a loss for Trump.  He may have also been annoyed at some fibbing by Flynn, as was the official explanation, but I fear he finally blinked.  He’s stood up to constant attacks for a year and a half, but every man has his limits. And this victory will embolden his opponents.

Desperate, self-satisfied, selfish and anti-democratic elements in the Establishment–that is to say the entire Establishment–will continue to wage direct and indirect warfare against his agenda, openly defy his directives, and have shown willingness to break the law to hurt him.  I’m concerned his experiences to date and the monumental task of dismantling and redirecting the infrastructure of the Deep State will be outside his level of expertise, as well as that of his team, if it were even possible for anyone.  Finally, I’m worried that folks in his team engaged in infighting–not always a bad thing–will selectively ally with the Deep State to oppose rival factions within the White House.  In other words, I’m concerned that Trump will try, but won’t succeed.  He’ll play whack-a-mole with the Courts, the Congress, and the Deep State, two out of three of which will be aligned against him regarding various issues at any one time.  And I’m concerned his full court press strategy–simultaneously issuing executive orders, nominating controversial people, cajoling businesses to invest in America, and dealing with other day to day issues–lacks the kind of single-issue focus needed to accomplish the dismantling of the Deep State piece by piece.

This opposition, of course, is superficially by design.   We have a system of divided government, with checks and balances, and a “run amuck” majority is supposed to be slowed down to catch its breath through these deliberately undemocratic checks.  But the system is not a perfectly balanced mechanism that always yields good results.  It depends on the integrity and composition of the American people, was not designed around modern party politics, and the founders did not consider that an unelected and powerful apparatus–the administrative state and the permanent bureaucracy–would have a say in all this.  It is precisely the presence and agenda of this extra-constitutional element to which Trump has directed his energies, and its powers are almost entirely alien to our constitutional structure.  It ostensibly works for and is accountable to the President, but it has been described by commentators accurately as the Headless Fourth Branch.  It will be the problem, along with its allies in the media and the courts.

Politics is more than politics.  Certain issues define the nation and its purpose as a whole. These questions–slavery, war, immigration–often yield Manichean conflict, because unlike tax levels, they’re not issues where the goals are largely agreed upon, but instead present questions of first principles:  Who does the government work for? Who should be in the country? What is our country’s defining characteristic?  Who are its friends and enemies?

Trump’s presidency is fundamentally a referendum on majority rule and the rights of the American majority:  do we reject open borders, job-killing trade, and endless foreign wars–as the American people want–or do we continue on this course because it is the desire of the Deep State, the Establishment, and its middlebrow cheerleaders?  The question is important for obvious reasons.  It is a question of what kind of country we live in, whom are our countrymen, and whether most of them will flourish or simply act as servants to the Establishment.  For Middle America, it’s fundamentally a question of survival and the survival of self-government.

The main feature of the dustup of Trump and the courts over his temporary immigration ban from 7 shit-hole countries is the philosophy of judicial supremacy, which holds that no action by any branch of government is beyond their reach, as defined by themselves, without any opportunity by those other branches for resistance.  In a system of checks and balances, this amounts to a blank check.

What started as a reasonable comparison of the broader Constitution (the supreme law) with a particular law in Marbury v. Madison has morphed into the assumption of the role of Platonic Guardians, who decree what “we the people” can and cannot do in areas over which the courts have no particular authority, expertise, or legitimacy.   They are simply making things up based on their own views of good and bad policy and invoke a few hoary sounding legal principles as cover.  It’s an insult to a self-governing people who have any pride.

Immigration policy is fundamentally part and parcel of broader foreign policy, and it’s long been outside the reach of the courts.  It’s the domain of the executive both through the basic principles of Article II and specific statutory grants.  Here, the president can prevent whole classes of aliens from immigrating for any number of reasons, and presidents ranging from Carter to Obama have done so.

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A Simple Matter of Executive Discretion that Did not Lead to Nationwide Protests

The Courts know this, but they don’t like it.  They equally don’t like that rednecks get to decide how to run their schools or punish criminals.  Thus, the courts have acted sometimes aggressively, sometimes gingerly, for more and more say in what every level of government does since the 1950s.

They decided how schools should be run, police should do their jobs, enemy prisoners of war should be treated, and whether states can outlaw things that have long been outlawed.  They do this in a variety of ways, but mostly through “penumbras” and “emanations” of the 14th Amendment and, barring that, through simply waiving a wand called “due process.” And sometimes, as in this case, with no real argument at all.  Their legitimacy is founded in their correct opinions, which miraculously happen to be the ever-changing prejudices of elites who went to places like Harvard and Yale.

There’s obviously a place for courts.  They’re supposed to decide cases before them in a neutral way, guaranteeing that procedures known in advance are adhered to in our adversary system. The courts, ideally speaking, are a neutral referee.  But a referee doesn’t get to call the plays.  More so than not, the Constitution is an organization chart.  It’s silent on most matters of substance.  It’s not a prism through which every matter on which people disagree can be resolved.  Since those areas of disagreement are nearly infinite, we have adopted democratic processes.  Counting votes is the most fair way to address the vast majority of things–its superior to counting bayonets in most cases–and courts are there simply to implement those decisions as written down in statute books.

The ultimate judicial virtue is humility. Many times they cannot act at all, and those tasks are left to other branches or to individuals themselves. Most judges embrace this; they don’t make the news and quietly perform their mostly technical job with skill and care.  But a certain type of judge with a certain type of education and a certain type of viewpoint is anything but humble; he is emboldened by his moral certainty and indifferent to the views of the people, whom he “knows” are wrong-headed and atavistic.

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A Judge Upholding the Dignity of the Office With Humility

It’s obvious something much more subversive is underway when the following statute is read to include a Court role:  : “Whenever the President finds that the entry of any aliens or of any class of aliens into the United States would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, he may by proclamation, and for such period as he shall deem necessary, suspend the entry of all aliens or any class of aliens as immigrants or nonimmigrants, or impose on the entry of aliens any restrictions he may deem to be appropriate.”  There is simply no room for the courts to have any say in this matter . . . . and they hate it.  On immigration, the legislature has spoken and left the matter to the President; the courts have no more role here than in deciding how many battalions to employ outside of Jalalabad.

Incidentally, the wartime analogy is an apt one, as we saw the courts abandonment of its traditional abstention doctrines during the Hamdan and Rasul cases under the Bush administration.  At the time, I wrote the following:

The Court’s decision ultimately betrays three major biases, all of which are very dangerous to our constitutional system and the future success of the war on terror.

First, the Court apparently will countenance no distinction between military and peace-time realities, demanding in effect the same level of US court involvement and scrutiny of decisions involving unlawful combatants that are not (and could never be) signatories to the Geneva Conventions entitled to their protections.

Second, the Court basically shows at every turn, in spite of its lip-service to the destruction of 9/11, that it does not think this is a real war, with a real enemy, where the safety of actual Americans is in grave danger. Why do I know this? Because the Court has resisted every demand to treat these military measures in a military operation against a military organization any differently from ordinary criminal procedures. Here, as in criminal cases, the burdens, procedures, rules of evidence, and likely outcomes are designed to favor defendants heavily under the Court’s recent line of cases.

Finally, the Court does not countenance any other branch of government acting without its ultimate approval and involvement. It simply will not follow its traditional abstention doctrines when that means the Court cannot review decisions of criminal liability, even when those decisions come from military courts in wartime and even when those “criminals” are war criminals from an unlawful military organization.

For a constitutional system that is supposed to embody a balance of powers, in which unreviewable and uncontrolled action by any one branch is suspect, the Court never expresses any doubts about its own rectitude and authority, even when it interferes in traditional executive wartime responsibilities. As always, “Quis custodiet custodes?”

 

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 D-Day Was Delayed by Two Weeks Due to a Federal Court Injunction, Thankfully the Courts Eventually Lifted It . . .  Yeah that didn’t happen.

Week one is over.  Let’s summarize what really happened:

  • Obamacare:  He allowed more flexibility on Obamcare, to relieve the burdens on companies and individuals.  I understand he has also pushed the replacement part to the front of agenda for Republicans  in Congress.  This is a good thing. Historically Republicans get tarred as anti-little-guy by showing so little concern for the losers of their war on the welfare state.  Obamacare at least has 2 or 3 times as many losers as the status quo ante, so it shouldn’t be hard to do something better, cheaper, without a hugely negative outcome.
  • Trade:  He got us out of TPP.  As with NAFTA, any trade deal needs to keep American jobs here, avoid massive trade deficits, and retain vital industries.
  • Mexico:  He showed Mexico’s president–who conspires with his consular officials to break our immigration laws–who the First World Power is, announcing his intention to support a renegotiation of NAFTA.  Peso fell massively.  They have forgotten who needs whom.
  • Faux Outrage on CIA Visit:  He made some media flacks unhappy during his CIA visit, as if people who want to flood us with Syrian refugees, give two figs about national security. Did they miss the news from Berlin and Paris? As with their “Trump will start WWIII” nonsense, their endangerment of America and the West is not a bug but a feature of their Marxist repopulation scheme.
  • Smaller Govt. Where it Counts:  He vowed to deregulate and shrink the government, along with immediate regulatory and hiring freezes, echoing his inaugural address theme that the government has become divorced from its “customers” and become a permanent, out-of-touch, and parasitic elite.  The burden of regulations is so massive and not particularly on radar of anyone since Ronald Reagan, whose regulatory agenda did a lot to spur massive economic growth.  The never-been-in-private-sector Obama could care less, and our anemic growth made it plain.
  • Pro-Life:  He ended US funding for NGOs that promote abortion overseas.  So much for him not being a conservative.  Abortion is bad enough, but it’s disgusting our taxpayer dollars are used to promote and pay for it anywhere.
  • Energy Independence:  He greenlighted the Keystone Pipeline, which, like so many infrastructure projects, has become lassoed by a combination of ordinary environmental regulations and the lunatic Global Warming Theory, a tool to destroy the wealth of the Western World.
  • Immigration Security:  He announced “extreme vetting” on immigrants from unruly countries like Somlia, Yemen, and hostile nations like Iran.  He also said we would be building a wall, and directed DHS and other relevant agencies to implement these rules. Restrictions on immigration are well within the presidential bailiwick–see generally 8 U.S. C. Sec. 1182(f)–even Obama did it to Iraq when a couple of them turned up in Kentucky working for al Qaeda. Of course, there were no Soros-funded rent-a-mobs that time, but this time everyone knows the policy’s motive and goal is different; it’s a declaration that we’re a real nation, not just an idea, and we get to decide who can visit and live here.
  • Strong-Arming Sanctuary Cities:  Even better, Trump announced funding would be yanked from “Sanctuary Cities,” who take a lot of federal funds, but don’t cooperate with U.S. deportation of felons and others on whom there is an immigration detainer.  I’m all for federalism, but Immigration has always been decided at a federal level.  Ask Elian Gonzalez.  Cities taking federal money but defying federal law in one of the latter’s core areas of responsibility is a joke.  And it has been tolerated under Republican and Democratic presidents because, until now, no one was serious about addressing illegal immigration.

All in all an amazing week full of activity, energy, and a unifying theme:  the good of the country and the American people.  While there were some needless forays into a pointless debate on Inaugural crowd size, it was overall a focused pro-business, pro-labor, and pro-conservative agenda in all of its particulars.

It was a reminder of the tremendous power of the presidency; he, after all, controls the enormous armies of workers and bureaucrats in myriad federal agencies.

And, perhaps not surprisingly for an unconventional candidate, it showed a lack of the usual “thanks for your vote and now I’m going to do the opposite” stuff we saw from Bush and other Republicans.  Historically, elected Republicans have forgotten the interests and desires of their core constituencies on so many issues, especially immigration.  Or they have embraced the unpopular parts of the culture war and agenda–indifference to workers, sexual purity spirals–while ignoring the low hanging fruit on the national question, where the policy and the views of the majority are largely in alignment.

This really was a special week, and, in some ways, a pleasant confirmation of all the reasons I supported Trump from the beginning.