Saturday, January 28, 2017

We are down to one political party that represents Americans

Since the days of John Adams our country has been a two party system. George Washington warned against it, but the two party system is what is. For most of history both party's have had some good ideas and some bad ideas. But, for the most part, both party's, in their own way, wanted what was best for the country; for the American people.

Now we still have two party's. But the sad news is that only one has some good ideas and some bad ideas. The other party is so far gone now that it is on the wrong side of nearly every issue. This is a sad state, but it's true.

Go back to the election of 1960. You had John F. Kennedy against Richard Nixon. Both had some good ideas and some bad ideas. Kennedy was basically a conservative, and Nixon was a liberal republican. You may have preferred one over the other, but if your guy lost you didn't think it was the end of the country.

After Kennedy was assassinated the democratic party changed. The death of Kennedy put Lyndon John son in the White House, and this was when the party started to be taken over by radicals. This is when the hippies took over the democratic party.

Just to give an example, republicans are known for putting constitutionalists judges on the benches. For most of history both party's did this. For most of history, judges followed the rule of law regardless of their own personal opinion; regardless of their own party's political agenda.

Not now. The democrat party puts activist judges on benches. These are judges who use the bench to move the liberal agenda forward, rather than defending and protecting the Constitution; rather than following the rule of law. To democrats, to the liberals who control the democratic party, the Constitution is an obstacle in their way and it needs to be "liberally" defined. That's how Rowe-v-Wade was allowed to go through.

One party respects climate, and understands that it changes all the time; that it has always changed and always will change. They want clean air just as much as anyone. However, they understand the idea of man made climate change is a theory to be respected, and not a fact. The other party is so in bed with the climate change theory that they are willing to hurt our economy with stiff regulations.

For most of history both party's respected God. Today, one party is the party of God, while the other party -- the democrat party -- has done everything in their power to take God out of schools and out of Washington. One party respects life, while the other believes women should have the right to kill their unborn children at any point before they are born.

Basically, it's almost as though the republican party is the party of America, and the democrat party is the party of anti-America. Republicans understand that America has made the rest of the world better. Democrats believe America is what's wrong with the rest of the world. This is why they want to keep our borders open, because they feel guilty.

To give an example, republicans know there is plenty of money in the world for everyone to get rich if they wanted to; if they made the effort. They understand that American exceptionalism means that everybody has an opportunity to dream big and accomplish their dreams.

Democrats believe there is only so much money in the world. The believe if one person is rich, that someone else is poor. They believe that if one nation is rich, it's at the expense of others. That's why they support socialist ideas of taking from the rich and giving to the poor. Rather than teaching the poor how to fish, they just give them entitlements that someone else pays for.

This also explains why they want open borders and free trade agreements. I'm fine with open borders and free trade, but democrats have made our borders bleed. Free trade resulted in 70,000 jobs moving out of America because foreign labor is cheap, and then they sell their products in America at a lower price.

For example, there is a $60 billion trade deficit with Mexico. This was done on purpose. It's because democrats (and sadly, half of republicans too), have decided to take care of the people of other nations before our own.

Basically, conservative republicans are republicans. Reagan conservatives are republicans. Moderate republicans like John McCain are democrats. Democrats are now fascists.

Monday, January 23, 2017

George H.W. Bush: "Read my lips: No new taxes!"

Ronald Reagan leads the nation through the greatest period of economic expansion in U.S. history, and when term limits and age prevented him from running for a third term, an easy decision for republicans was to nominate his Vice President, George Herbert Walker Bush, for President in 1988.

George Bush was born on June 12, 1924, in Milton, Massachusetts, the second of five children. His parents were Prescot and Dorothy Bush. He was named after his grandfather, whose nickname was "Pop." So, it was only fitting that the younger George H.W. Bush be called "Poppy" or "Little Pot."

His father was a partner in a Wallstreet investment bank, so Prescot and Dorothy  had plenty of money. Despite this, they made sure George and his siblings were not spoiled.

When Pearl Harbor was attacked by Japanese warplanes on December 7, 1941, George Bush was 17 years old. He vowed that he would join the military as soon as he turned 18. And, true to his word, despite being accepted to Yale, and despite his father encouraging him to go to college prior to joining the service, Bush joined the Navy. On June 9, 1943, he earned his wings, becoming the youngest aviator in the navy.

On September 2, 1944, his plane was hit by anti-aircraft fire. Despite his plane being on fire and the cockpit filling with smoke, he completed his mission and dropped four bombs. He then flew as far as he could over the ocean until he couldn't stay inside the plan anymore, and ejected.

He inflated a raft. Japanese forces were in the area and were on the way to take him prisoner. However, out of the blue water came a U.S. submarine called the Finback. Bush had to stay aboard for a month while the crew finished their mission.

In total, he would participate in 58 missions. He would serve out his time in the military as a trainer of new navy pilots. He would serve until the end of WWII.

He became a student at Yale, had a son named George W. Bush, and graduated from Yale. His father wanted him to work with him, although Bush decided to take a job as an equipment clerk at an oil company in Texas. It's what got his foot in the door of the oil industry.

In 1951, he and friend started the Bush-Overbay Oil Development Company that they called "Zapata." The business became very successful.

His father was elected as a U.S. Senator out of Connecticut in 1952. By 1962, the younger Bush was bitten by the political bug and decided to get into politics. He was asked to run for chairman of the Harris County Republican Party (in Texas) and he accepted. He easily won.

This set him up nicely to run for the U.S. Senate in 1964. He would be opposed the incumbent Ralph Yarborough. During the campaign, John F. Kennedy was assassinated and Lyndon Johnson became President.

The very liberal Johnson would face Conservative Barry Goldwater in 1964, and Bush supported Goldwater. Johnson won in a landslide, and riding the wave of this landslide victory was Ralph Yarborough.

After the loss, Bush quipped: "I took some far right positions to get elected. I hope I never do it again. I regret it." This was among the first signs that Bush was not a true Conservative, more of a moderate republican. This would go on to haunt the rest of his political career.

In 1966, Bush ran for a seat in the House of Representative, and this time he won with 56.7% of the vote. He became the first republican to represent Houston in Congress. During his term, he angered his fellow republicans by supporting Johnson's Fair Housing Act.

In 1968, he campaigned for republican presidential candidate Richard Nixon, and for this Nixon was very thankful. That same year Bush successfully ran for a second term. In 1970, he gave up his seat in the House to run against democrat Lloyd Bentsen for the Texas seat in the U.S. Senate.

Bush lost. However, Nixon, wanting to thank Bush for campaigning for him in 1968, nominated Bush to become U.S. ambassador to the United Nations. In 1972, he was asked by Nixon to chair the Republican National Committee. He didn't necessarily want the job, but he said, "You cannot turn a President down"

After Watergate resulted in Nixon's resignation, Bush became chief liaison officer to the People's Republic of China. Beginning in 1972, Nixon had started to improve relations with China. At the time, little was known about this nation, so Bush considered his new assignment a challenge.

Rather than riding limousines through the streets of China, He and Barbara rode bicycles just like the Chinese residents did. In order to learn about the Chinese way of life, he and Barbara would also participate in many Chinese events and would socialize with the Chinese as much as possible.

Bush was tasked with the job if further improving relations with the Chinese, and improving relations between the two nations. His time in this post was considered by many as a success. It ended in 1975 when President Ford nominated him to head the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).

He loved his current job and did not want to change. The CIA at this time was a mess, and failure to fix it might hurt his future political aspirations. However, once again, he did not turn a President down. He used skills he learned in the oil business to fix the CIA. When Ford lost to Carter in 1976, Bush's term as CIA director abruptly ended.

So, this would put Bush in a nice position to begin preparing for a potential run for President in 1980. He was the son of a former U.S. Senator. He was a successful businessman and had gained extensive experience in both domestic politics and foreign affairs. It's probably fair to say he was among the most qualified people ever to seek the office.

A problem he faced was that he was up against a true conservative by the name of Ronald Reagan. While he was a conservative, it was quite clear that he was no Ronald Reagan conservative. While running against Reagan in the Republican primaries in 1980, he referred to Reagan's economic plan (which would later be dubbed "Reaganomics") as "Voodoo Economics." This would end up haunting Bush more than his opponent.

Many people thought Reagan was going to name former President Gerald R. Ford to be his Vice President. However, Ford sort of stepped in it when he said that if he were nominated for the post it would be like there were two Presidents in the White House. Reagan wasn't happy with that idea. So, he went with his #2  choice for the position and gave George H. W. Bush a surprise call.

The problem with Bush is that he is one of many republican politicians who are afraid of conservatism. Even though they might support the conservative agenda, they developed a fear that if they gave the impression they were too far to the right that their careers would take the same path as Goldwater.

Reagan was well aware that Bush was very qualified for the job. He was also well aware of his fear of Conservatism. So, he asked Bush if he would be able to support his Conservative agenda. Bush said he could.

Reagan campaigned as a Conservative. When elected he acted like a conservative, and cut regulations, cut taxes, and created an economic environment that set off the greatest period of economic expansion in U.S. history.

As Reagan's second term was coming to an end, George Bush was set up nicely to be the Republican nominee for President. Haunting him, however, were his comments in the past that hinted that he would not be conservative enough to gain the support of the republican conservative base.

In 1984, for instance, democratic nominee for President Walter Mondale said that if Bush were elected President he would raise taxes. While Reagan said he would not raise taxes during his second term, Bush said that there are times when taxes needed to be raised.

At the Republican National Convention on August 18, 1988, even though he had secured the nomination, these comments still hung over Bush's head. So, in order to gain the support of conservative voters, he said:

"Read my lips: No new taxes!"

These six words would go on to define his presidency, and not in a good way.

They would see him rode the wave of Reagan's popularity and a booming economy and handily defeat Democrat Michael Dukakis by an electoral vote of 426 to 111. He won 40 states to Dukakis's 10 and won the popular vote by a total of 53.4% to 45.6%.

I was freshman student at Ferris State University at this time. I watched the results come in with my friend Frank in the Bond Hall lobby. He was a democrat. Early in the evening, it appeared quite apparent that Bush was going to win. I remember my friend saying, "It's looking pretty apparent to me that Bush is going to win. Congratulations!

This landslide victory put Bush in a great position to continue the Reagan economic boom.

He failed.

He failed because he decided to play it safe and make no changes, rather than continuing the Reagan trend of reducing the size and scope of government. It became apparent, even to those who were new to politics such as myself, that Bush wasn't a true conservative. In fact, he was afraid of it.

And it was so sad to see. He was set up so nicely, if only he just acted as a conservative. He was not alone in this type of failure, as it plagued Ford in 1976, just as it would plague Bob Dole in 1996, John McCain in 2008, and Mitt Romney in 2012.

Reagan proved conservatism worked. Yet, for one reason or another, republicans, like Bush, continue to be afraid of it. It was because of this stupid idea that you have to move to the center, and to cater to democrats, and to negotiate with democrats, that doomed the Bush presidency.

It was for this reason that he reneged on his promise of no new taxes. However, not helping matters was that he did have to deal with a Democrat-controlled Congress.

In 1990 this Congress believed new taxes were needed to pay off the debt. Bush attempted to compromise so he didn't renege on his promise. The bill created no new taxes, per se. However, it did raise existing taxes.

This was called a broken promise, a sign that he could not be trusted. Nationalist Conservative Pat Buchanan played on this theme during the republican primaries in 1992. After Bush won the nomination, this theme was also used against him by former Arkansas Governor and democratic nominee for President Bill Clinton.

If winning re-election is considered as a sign of a President's success, then Bush's Presidency was flat out repudiated by voters, as he would go on to lose to Clinton by an electoral vote of 370 to 168.

To be fair, however, we must note here that Bill Clinton only earned 43% of the popular vote. So, during a typical election day, this would mean that Bush should have won.

However, businessman Ross Perot ran as a Reform Party candidate. He appealed to  voters by paying for commercial time and speaking directly to them, often referring to graphs and charts. He won a whopping 18.9% of the popular vote.

Most political analysts will claim that Perot cost Bush the election. However, some believe that if Perot shifted votes from Bush or Clinton, he did so equally, as exit polls showed he drew equally among conservative, liberal, and independent voters.

I'll let you decide if Perot cost Bush the election. However, I think it's fair to assume that Bush could have helped his chances if he would have had more faith in Conservatism. 

Fake News, a.k.a. the mainstream media

There have been a lot of accusations about fake news in the media recently. You have Facebook deciding it's going to try to screen out fake news. You have Hillary Clinton calling for regulations to stop fake news. But how do they decide what is fake and what is not?

I think that the calls to screen out fake news are merely efforts by leftists and leftist groups to stop voices they don't want to hear; it's efforts to shut up opposing viewpoints. It's efforts to shut up people like Rush Limbaugh. Worse, it's efforts to shut out voices like Breitbart and Infowars.

The real fake news is the mainstream media. If they were accurate, credible, trustworthy and fair in their reporting, it would be easy to screen out fake news. Yet since the mainstream media is so poor at doing their job, people hold the New York Times on the same level as some guy reporting the news from his bedroom. I mean, that's how bad it's gotten.

Personally, in the run up to the 2016 election, I did not pay much attention to mainstream media polls, and instead relied on secondary media outlets. They actually gave me optimism and hope. And, as it turns out, they were more right than the mainstream media.

You see, according to the mainstream media...
  • Donald Trump had no road to 270, as close to 90% of polls showed that Donald Trump had no way of becoming President and that Hillary Clinton had a 90% chance of winning
  • The Russians Hacked the election and a majority of people in this country think this is a serious issue.
  • Jill Stein called for a recount, and the media covered this as though it actually had a chance to work in order to delegitimatize Donald Trump. The truth is this entire story was a hoax and had no chance to work. 
  • Putin says he would like to build up his nuclear weapons. Trump says he would invite another nuclear arms race. What he meant by this is he would like to build up our military in a strategy called "Peace through strength. You create weapons so you don't have to use them. It's called deterrence. But the media acts like Trump is going to get us into a nuclear war. However, they never worry about Iran or North Korea causing a nuclear war. That's because they believe we are the cause of the world's problems. They create this fake story to make it look like Trump wants to start a nuclear war to make him look bad. 
  • Polls showed Donald Trump would lose Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconson, and it wouldn't even be close.
  • The media said Texas was in play. The truth is that Trump won their handedly.
  • Michael Brown had his hands up and said, "Don't Shoot!"  This was after he was shot by a police officer in Ferguson, Missouri. Turns out "Hands up, don't shoot!" It never happened. His hands were not up. Michael Brown was not running away from the police officers. His hands were not up. Everyone was lying about it. And this lie became so bad that football players, news ancors, all made light of this by putting their hands up. And it was all based on a lie. And it's a lie that was never corrected by the same media that lied about it. 
  • George Bush served dishonorably in the Air Force Reserve. This was according to Dan Rather in what became known as Rathergate.
  • It's fair to publish republican Donald Trump's taxes without his approval, but it's unfair to publish emails leaked about Hillary Clinton by Wikileaks. The Times reported the taxes, but barely mentioned the leaked emails. 
  • Iraq had weapons of mass destruction. They never did their own research, and never criticized this until after the War in Iraq was ongoing. 
  • They did not criticize comments about Obamacare by Obama such as "If you like your doctor you can keep your doctor," and "Healthcare costs will go down once Obamacare is passed." Both turned out to be lies the media never even considered questioning because they all wanted it to pass so badly. 
  • They gladly reported Hillary's lie that a video was responsible for Benghazi.
  • Fox news is liberal. The problem here is they confuse editorial shows with news shows. Actually, it was Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama who started this fake news story; they came up with it. Then, without questioning it, the media just took off with it. The true story was reported elsewhere: that Benghazi was the result of a terrorist attack. Four men died. They asked for increased security prior to the attacks. Hillary Clinton failed to listen to them. They all died. Then this fake story came out. If it wasn't for the so called "fake news" on the right, the true story of what happened never would have gotten out. This is why the mainstream media has lost credibility. 
  • George Zimmerman was guilty based on a tape unprofessionally edited by NBC News
  • Allegations by various women accusing Trump of sexual crimes were accurate enough to report. It's funny that Trump is a billionaire who has been in the news since I was in college in 1988, and there was never one sex allegation. And then, coincidentally, a month prior to the election there are several, and the media just goes with them as though they were facts. That's fake news. 
  • The New York Times is no longer objective. They reported this in a front piece article by Jim Rutenberg. They said they had to abandon principles of journalism because Donald Trump was too dangerous and had to be stopped. 
  • The New York Times has been objective for a long, long time. They have not, but have portrayed themselves as objective. They have been so bias that their reporters don't know the difference between an editorial page and news. They are unable to keep their editorial opinions out of their news articles. I will give examples of this in a later post. Anyway, objectivity is what gave the New York Times credibility and it's gone. It's why the media is in the shape it is today, and why Fox News is now the leading news outlet, and what gave rise to conservative voices such as Drudge, Rush Limbaugh, Breitbart, and Infowars. 
  • The economy is doing great right now. The White House reports a 4.5% unemployment rate and says the economy is good, and the media goes along with it rather than investigating the numbers. They do this in lieu of reporting that 94 million Americans are no longer in the workforce, and if these were added into the 4.5% the unemployment rate would be greater than 20%, which puts the number of unemployed at a rate similar to what was seen during the height of the great depression. But if you read the New York Times you wouldn't know. 
  • Brian Williams of NBC Nightly News was part of the news he was reporting. He ended up being fired because it turned out that he was making it all up. 
  • MSNBC host said Fox News held its Christmas party at one of Trump's hotels. The truth is that Fox News didn't even hold their Christmas party yet. 
  • Hillary Clinton reported that the Russians hacked the DNC Committee computers and were responsible for leaked emails. The media just went with it as though the Russians really did this. The media went with it because the wanted Trump to lose so badly. 
  • The democrats lost because the Russians Hacked the election. Hillary Clinton reported that she lost because the Russians hacked voting machines. The media went with this also in a last ditch effort to keep Donald Trump out of the White House. In order to maintain the integrity of voting, according to Greenhouse party candidate Jill Stein (who got less than 1% of the vote and has no chance of gaining enough votes to win). The recounts showed that Trump was the one who lost votes, not Stein or Clinton. Trump picked up votes in 2 of the 3 states. 
  • Republicans are supporting the effort to look into Russian hacking of voting machines. This is not true. It was only two republican senators -- Lindsay Graham and John McCain -- and not republicans in general. It was not the republican party, it was two establishment republicans who hate Donald Trump and would do anything to keep him out of the White House. 
It used to be if the New York Times, CBS, ABC, and NBC said something, it was believed. That's not the case anymore. There is no news organization that is credible and believable, and that's why the so-called "fake news" has sprung up. 

Monday, January 16, 2017

Low-Information Voters: Who Are They?

After the 2008 election, TIME magazine ran a story claiming that many people who voted for Obama never followed the news. This inspired Rush Limbaugh to coin the term "Low Information Voter."

He defined it as people who never follow the news and therefore are uninformed about the news. They don't know anything about politics. They don't know anything about the issues. They don't know anything about the candidates.

They pay attention to pop culture. They watch TV. They prefer to watch shows like TMZ and E! Entertainment than the news. They spend most of their time on Facebook paying attention to gossip. They listen to pop music. They watch TV shows and movies.

They watch shows like TMZ and E! Entertainment most of the year, only to get caught up in the moment just prior to the election. They feel the need to vote because they "need to do their part."

They generally consider themselves as independents, and independents are people who vote for the most popular candidate or the candidate who is most popular by the pop culture crowd.

They vote based on emotion more so than issues. They felt excited that Barack Obama was the first black president, so they voted for him. They felt offended that Donald Trump spoke the truth, so they didn't vote for him.

See, they vote based on emotion. They have no idea the issues. When they voted for Obama they had no idea he was a socialist. They don't even know what socialism is. They may even think socialism is good. They had no idea that Donald Trump's tax plan would benefit them. They do not know because they don't follow the news.They do not know anything about economics.

Some know who the president is while others do not. They may know the names of the candidates, although they do not know what the issues are. They are not informed on the important issues of the day.

And it's not that they don't care to be informed. Low-information voters simply choose to be informed about other things, like what actor won an Oscar, or what's happening in the latest episodes of Survivor.

They react; they do not think. They do not challenge themselves. They don't know about people who don't think like them. They hate people like Donald Trump and Rush Limbaugh based on what the people on the View said, although they have never listened to Rush, and never listened to a Trump speech.

Some of them are very smart people. Some of them are academics. They are the people educating our kids at the High School and College level. They teach liberalism because it feels good and sounds good, not so much that it is good. They don't see socialism and Communism as the failure it is, mainly because they just get swept up in the moment. They don't even know their own past. They don't even know their opponents.

On the contrary, informed voters know their opponents. Rush Limbaugh, for example, understands liberals better than liberals understand themselves. Informed voters understand that liberalism is the sister of socialism and Communism. But tell a liberal that and they will adamantly deny it. They will get angry and call you an uncaring idiot, racist, homophobe, and bigot.

They like people like Castro because it feels good and sounds good that Castro created a good education system and healthcare system. They fail to see Castro as the ruthless dictator that he is (was).

But I digress.

Most Low-Information Voters care more about pop culture than they care about what the national debt is and who will pay for it. They care more about planning that trip to Disney World than learning there are nearly as many people unemployed today as during the height of the Great Depression.

They are uninformed voters. They are not stupid, at least most of them aren't, they just don't care about the news, and therefore don't watch it. They don't understand history the way informed voters do.

Further reading:

Monday, January 9, 2017

The Brilliance of the Electoral College

Residents of less populous states like Rhode Island were leary of signing the Constitution because they feared they would be controlled by more populous states like New York. So, in order to make sure that each state had an equal say in who would be President, the founding fathers created the Electoral College.  It was essentially devised as a means of getting the smaller states to sign the U.S. Constitution.

Look at it this way. When the 13 American colonies were a part of Britain, the most populous part of the British Empire was in Britain. So it was people who lived in the most populous area of the British Empire (mainly the King), who decided how the government was going to be run. The colonies had no say. They essentially had to give into the whims of the King.

The electoral college is based on the idea of Federalism, or the idea that states are sovereign and the Federal Government can't control them. According to the 10th amendment, the Federal Government has certain powers, but anything not mentioned in the Constitution is relegated to the States to decide.

So, to protect Federalism, to protect state sovereignty, the founders created the electoral college. It essentially made it so the most populous could not gain control of the Federal Government in such a way that would essentially turn the rest of states into colonies. That's the system the founders wanted to get away from; it's the reason for the American Revolution.

They understood that there were areas of the United States that were highly populated. They also understood that people tend to gravitate to certain populations centers, so they understood that the population centers change over time. They understood that ideas change over time.

They wanted to make sure that regardless of where the population centers were that they maintained the integrity of Federalism. They wanted to maintain the power of the states. It's to support the idea that elections are decided by the States and not by the population.

A perfect example here is California and New York. California and New York are run by a bunch of liberals and progressives. Most of the people in these states are inculcated to believe in liberal and progressive ideals. They are also high population centers. So, imagine if these two states decided how the government was run. All the rest of the states would lose their sovereignty and become no more significant than colonies.

This idea turned out to be ingenious.

It was never even questioned until the progressive Al Gore won the popular vote in 2000 and George Bush won the electoral vote. It wasn't questioned again until progressive Hillary Clinton won the popular vote in 2016 and Donald Trump won the electoral vote.

Progressives essentially are claiming that Hillary should have won and that Donald Trumps presidency is illegitimate. But they are incorrect in their assertions. They are incorrect to assert that Hillary would have won if the rules were different. They fail to understand why the electoral college was created, and also what the reason for it is.

What they fail to tell you is that the rules at the present time make it so that Electoral Votes matter and the Popular Vote doesn't matter. For this reason, campaign strategies revolve around winning the electoral vote, not the popular vote.

There are some states that have lots of democrats, such as New York and California. Groupings of these states are called the blue wall, meaning that republicans in these states can vote, but their votes don't matter. There really isn't much point in Donald Trump spending much time there.

On the other hand, there are some states that have a lot of republicans, such as Texas. Groupings of these states are called the red wall, meaning that democrats in these states can vote, but their votes don't matter. There really isn't much point in Donald Trump spending much time there.

With the system the way it is, swing states are all that matters. Donald Trump and Hillary will spend most of their time in states like Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Wisconsin. With the electoral college, voters in these swing states are usually what determine who wins elections.

With the rules as they are, Trump gave up in New York and it's 28 electoral votes, and California and its 55 electoral votes. Instead, he spent a lot of time in Wyoming to capture its 3 electoral votes, Michigan to capture its 16 electoral votes, and Ohio to capture its 18 electoral votes. This strategy paid off, as all these swing states gave Trump their electoral votes.

Now, for the sake of argument, let's assume, that prior to the 2016 election cycle, the electoral college was abolished. This would have changed the strategy. Both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton would have spent hardly any time in less populous states, so that would take most of the swing states off the table. It would essentially take 80% of states off the table. Instead, they'd spend their time in New York and California.

If this happened, Trump and Clinton would have spent all their time campaigning in these two states. The campaigns would focus only on the issues that were relevant to the people in these population centers, which would probably include advancing the progressive agenda. The issues relevant to the rest of the nation would be irrelevant as the candidates would ignore those states.

Why, you ask, would Trump spend time in blue states like California and New York? Well, because there are a lot of republicans who do not vote in New York because they feel it is a waste of time. If they knew their vote counted, they would be more likely to vote. So Trump would be after these voters. Since there are a ton more potential voters in New York than New Hampshire, he would spend most of his time in New York and California, and maybe Florida and Texas.

This strategy would have made 80% of states irrelevant. The people living in these states would have no say in who becomes President, and they would essentially become slaves to the five largest states. These states would essentially be colonies rather than states.

So, with a different strategy, it is highly likely that Donald Trump would have been able to accrue the votes necessary to win the popular vote and still defeated Hillary.

Now, let us bring back the electoral college.

I would now like to use a simile that Rush Limbaugh used to put this into perspective. Let's use the 1960 world series, which had the New York Yankees playing the Pittsburgh Pirates. Over the course of four games, the Yankees scored a total of 55 runs and the Pirates scored a total of 27 runs. So, in essence, the Yankees scored the most runs, so they won the popular vote and should have won the world series.

But the total number of runs is not what determines the winner of the World Series. The winner of the world series is not who scores the most runs, it's who wins the most games. The Pirates won four of the seven games, so they won the world series. The Yankees won the popular vote, but the Pirates won the electoral vote, meaning the Pirates won and the Yankees lost.

The strategy to win the Presidency is not to get the most popular votes, it's to get at least 270 electoral votes. Trump accomplished this, and so he is our President-elect.

The way it is now, with the rules as they are set by the Constitution, talks between people from populous and non-populous states do occur, because we are a united nation where all states have a say in how the Federal government is run. Such talks are important to change minds, especially if the people of one state have a better way of running the Federal government.

In the United States, there's a vast amount of land that is divided into States. The Federal government is controlled by the people through the states. The Constitution was ratified by the states. The Bill of Rights was ratified by the states. And every President has been elected by the states. This is the same way the states controls the House and the Senate. This gives every person in every state a voice in how the country is run.

Another way to think of it is to think of America as a Democracy. This is what many young people think we are. This is what liberals think we are. So, when they see that Hillary won the popular vote, and she did not win, they see this as non-democratic.

You see? The problem is that we are not a democracy. The founding fathers did not like democracies. We are a republic, and so we elect people to represent us. That's what the premise of the electoral college is: we vote for electors. The electors then vote the way the people of the state want them to.

So, by having an Electoral College, the entire country gets represented, not just the most populous areas. This was because of the great foresight of the founders of this country.

Further reading:
  1. Conservative Tribune: Here's What The Media Won't Tell You About The Popular Vote

Monday, January 2, 2017

Ronald Reagan: Reaganomics

Ronald Reagan was one of the greatest presidents of all time because he followed the economic advice of Jack Kemp, who was an ardent supporter of Supply Side Economics. This inspired him to work with Congress to slash regulations and reform the tax code in an economic strategy that became known as "Reaganomics."

Reagan ran against incumbent Jimmy Carter and independent (and liberal republican Senator) John B. Anderson for President of the United States in 1980. Due to the unpopularity of the liberal President, and aided by a poor economy and the Iran-Contra Crisis, Reagan and the promise by Reagan won in a landslide.

Reagan received the highest number of electoral votes (489) ever by a non-incumbent presidential candidate. While Democrats maintained control of the House of Representatives, Republicans rode the Reagan wave of popularity to gain control of the Senate for the first time since 1955.

The election was also interesting because most polls had Ronald Reagan down by as many as seven points going into election night. However, as the results started coming in when polls closed, it quickly became apparent that the polls were wrong. About an hour and a half before California polls even closed, Jimmy Carter had conceded the election to Reagan.

In 1913, Woodrow Wilson signed the 16th Amendment, which created the progressive income-tax system. At that time it was a 1% levy on the wealthy. This top marginal income tax would creep up to 94% during the 1940s in order to pay for all of FDRs New Deal progressive (socialist) social programs.

So, the marginal income tax made it so that, as you make more profit, you pay more in taxes. Once you get up to the top income tax bracket, during the 1940s, you paid a 94% tax on all of your income. This would ultimately take a toll on the economy.

Reagan himself was a victim of the top income tax bracket having to pay a whopping 94% tax on that income during the 1940s and 50s. He was one of the top draws for Warner Brothers during this era, and once he crept up to the top bracket (aptly called "bracket creep) there was no incentive to keep making movies. This came at the expense of all the crew who put together his movies, who all had to look elsewhere for work.

The same type of situation was occurring in the rest of the nation due to high taxes to pay for out of control spending on progressive social programs, many born out of FDRs New Deal during the 1930s. Reagan referred to it as "creeping socialism."  The more people made, the less incentive they had to earn more. Once they made it to the top, they took their money and put it in a bank; they saved it rather than spent it.

Worded another way, "bracket creep" means that, as you make more income, you move into a higher income tax bracket. So, when Reagan came into office, the top marginal income tax bracket was 70%. Reagan believed that this acted as a disincentive to save, invest, expand, and create jobs and capital. This was socialism. It was the antithesis of capitalism.

One quick note here. To be fair, most people did not pay the 70% income tax. There were loopholes built into the system. These loopholes, or incentives, were created to get people to invest in the economy. Money could be put in certain places and you wouldn't have to pay a tax on that money. These loopholes made it so that some people, some very rich people, might have paid no taxes at all.

So, Reagan believed the way to stimulate the economy was to cut taxes, remove burdensome regulations, and cut spending. It makes sense. It's called capitalism. It's why some refer to conservatism as capitalism.

Would Reaganomics work? Well, note here that in 1981 the government, the U.S. Treasury took in from income taxes $480 billion. Save this thought for a moment.

In 1981, Reagan revealed his "program for economic recovery" to a Joint Session of Congress calling for $41.4 billion in cuts. These cuts would slash the Carter budget, although it would mostly slash programs created by FDR's Great Society. He did, however, vow to create a "safety net" for the poor, disabled, and elderly. He also called for a 30% tax cut and an increase in defense spending.

Reagan worked with republicans and democrats in Congress to push his agenda through. In the end, he earned the support of every republican along with 26 House Democrats.

At this time, Reagan enjoyed the support of two-thirds of Americans, and his highest approval rating. They really wanted to improve the economy, and they had Faith in Reagan's economic plan.

On March 30, 1981, Reagan was shot by John Hinckley Jr. He did not know immediately that he was shot. As soon as it was learned he was hit, he was rushed to the hospital, where he supposedly quipped to the nurses and doctors attending to him, "I hope we're all republicans here."

On April 28, 1981, Reagan appears before Congress for the first time since being shot. Some experts suspect that it was due to his rise in popularity following the assassination attempt that he was able to get his economic agenda through Congress.

Later that same year, Reagan's economic bill was approved by Congress. On July 39, 1981, he signed the Economic Recovery Act of 1981. However, rather than getting a 30% tax cut he had to settle for a 23% tax cut over three years. The top income bracket dropped from 70% to 50% and the lowest income bracket dropped from 14% to 11%. Over time, the top bracket dropped to 28%.

This was the largest tax cut in American history. It was simply a form of what Jack Kemp referred to as supply-side economics, and what the media dubbed, "Reaganomics." It was basically allowing capitalism to work. It was capitalism.
This was how you stimulate economies.

The recovery does not happen right away. While the country waited anxiously for signs of economic recovery, ' popularity dipped to 35%. Things did not look good for the country as the recession steepened, with unemployment at a six-year high. The U.S. now faced its largest budget deficit in history. Some were even calling for tax hikes. Yet Reagan was patient and predicted for things to improve.

Reagan then has to make a difficult decision whether he slashes the military budget to reduce the deficit or increase military spending. Reagan decides in favor of military spending, noting his desire to create peace through strength. This would end up being one of the many great decisions of his presidency, as it would help end the Cold war and turn the U.S. into the world's Super Power.

However, Reagan's popularity is so low during the mid-term election that the democrats pick up 26 seats in the House of Representatives, although republicans manage to maintain control of the Senate.

In 1979, Jimmy Carter hired Paul Volcker  as chairman of the Federal Reserve Board in order to tackle high-interest rates. Volcker raised interest rates to 15% and lowered the money supply to force businesses to lower prices. He believed this would lower interest rates. In 1982, he believed interest rates were low enough, so he cut interest rates and flooded the economy with money.

The economy did not improve. Calls were made for Reagan to change course. Reagan, however, stubbornly (confidently) decides to stay on course. While these were very stressful times, this decision would be one of the greatest in the history of the U.S.

Finally, by the spring of 1983, the first signs of economic recovery started showing. This would the beginning of the Reagan economic boom, the greatest period of economic prosperity in the history of the United States.

To this day, liberals credit Volcker's decision to raise interest rates in 1979, and then lower them in 1982, as the reason for the Reagan economic boom. Conservatives, however, credit Reagan's economic plan, otherwise known as Reaganomics.

Now, back to our question above. Did Reaganomics work? In 1989, when Reagan left office, the top marginal tax rate had dropped from 70% to 28%. The U.S. Treasury that year took in $950 billion. This meant that supply-side economics, Reaganomics, caused the amount of money made by the Treasury to double over Reagan's 8-year term as President.

How did this happen, you ask? It happened because it created more taxpayers. It created more jobs by reducing the top marginal rate on people. Whey you tell people that you get to keep more of your money if you move up to a higher income tax bracket, they are going to go out and do whatever it takes to earn more money.

They are going to quit finding places to hide their money. They are going to quit saving it. They are going to quit looking for loopholes. They are going to take that money and try to earn more money. They are going to put that money back into the economy; circulate it.

You can also think of it this way. Smal business owners are Subchapter S. Corporations, meaning they file their income taxes on a personal form. When taxes were high, they found places to hide their money rather than finding ways to earn more money. When taxes and regulations were reduced, this provided them an incentive to take their money out of hiding to invest in new capital, to expand their businesses, and to create more jobs and hire more workers.

They are going to expand their businesses. They are going to  invest in more capital. They are, in turn, going to create more capital. They are, in turn, going to create more jobs. You will then have more people working. With more people working, you save more taxpayers. With more taxpayers, the Treasury makes more money.

Add to this the fact that Reagan also signed bills causing the capital gains tax came down. The corporate tax came down. This meant that there was more money in the private sector and not at the government level.

So, as Reagan proved, capitalism works where progressivism fails at stimulating the economy. The same economic plan worked for Calvin Coolidge during the 1920s and John F. Kennedy during the 1980s.

Supply-side means leaving money in the hands of the people, rather than taking it and putting it into the hands of government officials. It means letting people keep more of the money they work so hard to work. It encourages them to find creative ways to be more productive and to earn more income.

This works to the benefit of everyone, from the top down. In fact, this is why supply-side economics is often referred to as "Trickle Down Economics." It offers an incentive for people at the top to take risks, and when they work out, it works to the benefit of everyone. And, as was the case during the 1980s, all classes of people benefited at nearly every level. The rich got richer, the middle class got richer, and the poor got richer.

Reagan was confident capitalism would work. He knew it worked for Coolidge and Kennedy before him. And, to the benefit of the nation, he was right. Reagan's economic prowess lead the nation into the longest period of economic expansion in the history of the United States. It was all due to "Reaganomics."

  1. Rush Limbaugh, "A Supply-Side Economics Lesson,", accessed 11/17/16
  2. Paul G. Kengor, "No Contest: The Reagan Stimulus vs. the Obama One," USA Today,, accessed 11/17/16