Adios a Fidel

 

It was so romantic when those truckfuls of young men with beards took over the cesspool of Havana on New Year’s Eve (a scene immortalized in The Godfather Two). They were bringing freedom and relief from poverty to the beleaguered people of Cuba who had suffered under American imperialism for more than sixty years.

When his main acolyte – the beautiful Che – was through shooting a few hundreds of political opponents – which took weeks – the business of revolutionary construction began in earnest. Soon, the Revolution had to face an invasion from disgruntled sons of the exiled Cuban upper-class plus a few misguided sons of the working class. The invasion was roundly betrayed by the fabled Pres. John F. J Kennedy. After that, the Revolution found extravagant financial support from the Soviet Union. a poor country itself but a large one.

Later, the leader of the Cuban Revolution tried to get the US nuked by his big Russian brother. That cool leader must have had his reasons, I am sure.

The stubbornness of opponents ( “guisanos,””worms”) was so great that the Revolution was forced to jail a few thousand of them, including poets (along with thousands of men whose crime was homosexuality). Other obdurate traitors to the Revolution left Cuba on balsa rafts and on rafts made with old barrels. Many drowned at sea. Their choice! After a while, one Cuban in five was living abroad, away from the workers’ paradise.

The Revolution triumphed in the fields of education and public health. Nowadays, Cubans’ level of literacy is a high as that of other Latin American countries. Although it’s not really free, the Cuban public health service is pretty good, what with its separate public-public sector and its sector for Communist Party members only, the two strictly equal to each other, of course.

When the first leader became too old, somehow, the best revolutionary found to succeed him was his little brother, as happened in other people’s democracies such as North Korea.

In the meantime, there had been several military adventures, all in tropical countries where even ordinary Cuban privates could afford bananas, for once. That they did not win anywhere was not their fault. One prominent general even had to be shot by the leadership because he was dealing drugs. His trial lasted a whole week.

Today, after fifty years, progress is so great that ordinary Cubans easily earn forty or fifty dollars a month. Many earn three times more by renting their bedroom to foreign visitors. Take university professors and medical doctors. They can always make much more than fifty a month be driving a taxi. And meat is now available six days a month instead of the customary four. You can’t argue with this!

As Westerners, we must be especially grateful that the Cuban Revolution has made the island into one of the best destinations for sex tourism in the world.

Yes, Fidel was really, really cool and we will all miss him. He was our youth. He gave Communism a second breath  with plenty of coconut-scented sun lotion. We could have sworn it would have worked this time: human progress, with smiles and liberty. He did embarked on a great experiment in human happiness. That it may have failed repeatedly is not his fault at all. Nobody is perfect. At least, his long life of power and influence has had the great merit of showing what happens to Communist take-overs in the long run, when no external factor puts a precocious end to them.

PS  To this day, many Cubans and an embarrassing number of Western leftists believe that the Cubans’ poverty is mainly due to the US BLOCKADE of the island. Well folks, there was a blockade, in the early sixties. It lasted two weeks (fourteen or fifteen days). Since then, there has been an American economic embargo on Cuba. It means that Americans cannot buy from or sell most items to Cuban economic actors. Cubans could always buy anything from and sell anything to anyone else in the whole wide world, including our Canadian cousins who have everything we have. We are talking here of a fifty year-old grand lie. You had to be cool, like Fidel and his little brother to pull it off!

WITH A LITTLE PATIENCE AND PERHAPS REPEATED ATTEMPTS, YOU CAN HEAR A VOICE BLOGGING FROM INSIDE CUBA BY JUST ACTIVATING THE LINK BELOW. IT’S NOT ALWAYS UP TO DATE, THE BRAVE WOMAN BLOGGER DOES WHAT SHE CAN TO ELUDED INTERRUPTION:        https://generacionyen.wordpress.com/

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Trump, l’un-Obama

Je suis desole mais je n’ai pas le courage de former les accents pour ce texte avec mon logiciel anglais peu commode. J’espere que vous pourrez quand meme me lire.

Chers amis francophones:

La victoire electorale de Donald Trump vous aura choque, bien sur car vos grand medias vous ont trompes tout en demontrant leur incompetence. Pour commencer, leurs envoye speciaux, ou meme permanents, connaissent generalement mal l’Anglais. Pour finir, ils sont eux-memes mal informes. Ils donnent l’impression de ne jamais sortir de Manhattan et de Washington D.C. On dirait qu’ils ne lisent que le New York Times, celui-la meme qui a accompli le fait-de-guerre journalistique de se tromper jusqu’a la derniere minute sur les probabilite de victoires de la candidate qu’il soutenait de facon ehontee.

Le monde tremblote, il est dans tous ses emois parce que, faute d’information elementaire, il ne sait pas a quoi s’attendre de la part de l’improbable President Trump. Je vais essayer de vous le dire brievement. Ce que j’ai a dire va surement surprendre nombre d’entre vous, francophones, et surtout des Francais soumis continuellement a une presse gauchiste rudimentaire autant que malveillante. On pourra juger de ma propre credibilite en parcourant le rest de ce blog qui comporte entre autres chose, plusieurs affichages en Francais

Il faut d’abord comprendre deux choses. Premierement, ce n’est pas tant que Trump a gagne, mais plutot, que Clinton a perdu. J’ai moi-meme vote pour Trump, et ma femme aussi, parceque nous pensons que Clinton serait en prison – sur la base de plusieurs chefs d’accusation – si le processus judiciaire normal n’avait pas ete deraille a dessein par l’administration Obama.* Ni ma femme ni moi n’avons beaucoup de choses positives a dire sur Mr Trump. L’analyse posterieure des bulletins de vote demontre que beaucoup de gens qui le considerent peu fiables ont quand meme vote pour lui. Il parait avoir remporte sensiblement moins de voix que Clinton. Il possede donc un mandat limite.

Deuxiemement, ce qui vient de se passer n’est pas seulement une victoire presidentielle plutot modeste mais un ras-de-maree anti-Democrate ( le parti) a tous les echelons. Les Republicains possedent aujourd’hui plus de sieges electifs qu’ils n’en n’ont jamais eu depuis la Grande Depression des annees trente. Cette domination inclut 39 postes de gouverneur sur cinquante.

Qu’attendre de cette nouvelle donne politique?

L’Immigration

Il est hors de question qu’on expulse dix ou onze millions d’immigrants illegaux. Trump a annonce qu’il allait pourchasser et sortir du territoire national les etrangers en etat d’irrregularite qui ont aussi aussi commis des crimes. Ceci est exactement, et depuis plusieurs annees, la politique… d’Obama. Il est possible toutefois qu’il le fasse avec plus de vigueur que son predecesseur.

Construire un mur sur la frontiere Sud comme il l’a promis maintes fois serait une grosse betise. D’abord, les Mexicains en situation irreguliere qui quittent les Etats-Unis sont aujourd’hui plus nombreux que ceux qui y entrent. Ensuite, meme dans les milieux les plus hostiles a l’immigration illegale, on a chacun ses exception, ses “bons Mexicains” sans lequels on aurait du mal a fonctionner. Si le gouvernment federal se mettait a expulser les Mexicains en situation irreguliere mais innocents de tout crime de droit commun, on commencerait vite a les cacher. (Moi aussi.) D’ailleurs, Trump a, durant sa campagne, bien evite de mentionner la plus evidente maniere de faire cesser l’immigration illegale. Il s’agit simplement d’appliquer la legislation existante et qui punit les employeurs de travailleurs en situation irreguliere. En fait, Trump va tendre un simple barbele aux endroits de la frontiere qui ne sont pas encore fortifies. Ensuite, il va imposer une taxe de 1/1000 de 1 % sur les mandats vers le Mexique et il declarera qu’il a construit un mur et qu’il a fait payer le Mexique!

Il y a en fait, pas un mais deux problemes d’immigration. Le premier est de savoir si on accepte des gens qui commencent leur sejour dans le pays en enfreignant les lois existantes. Le second, c’est de savoir si on les admet a la citoyennete. Ce sont deux questions bien distinctes. Beaucoup de Republicains repondent a la premiere question par un : “Non, mais….” Ils sont unanimes, par contre, pour s’opposer a leur accession a la citoyennete. Ceci pour plusieurs raisons dont l’une est que ceux des immigrants qui votent le font surtout pour le Parti Democrate.

Il y a aussi le cas special des immigrants Musulmans, dont beaucoup de refugies. Apres plusieurs attentats commis ici par des Musulmans et apparemment (en apparence) au nom de l’Islam, et vus les problemes lies a la menace terroriste que continuent a affliger la France et d’autres pays etrangers, l’idee de soumettre les immigrants Musulmans a une super-verification est bien accueillie. Il ne s’agit pas du test sandwich jambon/biere, par exemple. On peut imaginer de soumettre tous les immigrants a une question pointue sur la separation de l’etat et de la religion tout en leur faisant savoir que leur reponse est sujette a publication nominative. (Pour les Musulmans qui suivent les ecrit sacres de l’Islam a la lettre ce concept est une abomination.) Bien sur, les vrais terroriste mentiraient. En les faisant repondre a cette question sous serment, on organiserait un maniere instantanee de poursuivre en justice et surtout de placer en garde a vue ceux qui mentiraient et qui seraient pris plus tard. Contrairement a une propagande Democrate repandue mais mensongere, le programme de Trump ne comporte aucune mesure a l’egard des Musulmans qui resident deja aux Etats-Unis, soit comme citoyens, soit comme immigrants legaux. Aucune!

La fiscalite et l’economie

Avec une majorite aux deux chambres, Trump ne va pas se priver de baisser les impots, presque tous les impots, sans doute. Il fera le pari qu’une telle mesure incitative relancera l’economie vers une croissance normale pour l’Amerique, soit 3+% p de PIB annuellemnt. Il fera aussi le pari qu’a moyen terme, cette relance renflouera les caisses de l’etat federal. Une administration Trump fera entre aures choses, le necessaire fiscal pour recapturer des millards de dollars appartenant a des societes americaines mais parques a l’etranger a cause de la forte fiscalite a laquelle leur repatriation fait aujourd’hui face. Cela fera surement un appel d’air en Europe. Desole!

Les accords commerciaux internationaux

Mr Trump a fait beaucoup de bruit pendant sa campagne et s’est attire beaucoup de soutien politique en denoncant des accords economiques internationaux “injustes” auxquels appartiendraient les Etats-Unis. Ces accords seraient la cause, selon M. Trump, de la rapide disparition des emplois industriels americains (malgre la progression continue de la production industrielle). J’ai bien l’impression que Mr Trump ne comprend pas vraiment la logique economique de la specialisation et des echanges, y compris les echanges internationaux. Il est vrai que la plupart de gens ne comprennent pas non plus, et, je pense, surtout en France. Je resume donc: Quand les Canadiens font pousser leur propres bananes, il appauvrissent tout le monde. C’est ainsi parcequ’il y a des tas de choses qu’ils font mieux que la cultures des bananes. Il serait preferable de se consacrer a ce qu’ils font de mieux et d’acheter des bananes sous les tropiques.

J’ai toujours pense que l’existence neanmoins de tant d’accords commerciaux internationaux constituait une sorte de miracle et meme la preuve d’un sorte de sagesse des elites politiques. (Il n’est pas trop tard pour se mettre a la comprehension de la logique sous-jacente aux accords commerciaux internationaux. Les liens qui suivent vous ameneront a plusieurs essais sur la question sur ce blog-meme. Je les ai tous ecrit deliberement pour ceux que j’appelle les “ignorantsintelligents”:

version courte: https://factsmatter.wordpress.com/2009/08/15/the-de-industrialization-of-the-us-a-string-of-enlightening-fallacies-essay-on-international-economics-in-plain-english/

Le cours complet: /https://factsmatter.wordpress.com/2010/11/25/specialization/)

Il est pourtant vrai que la plupart des accords internationaux aboutissent aussi a des pertes d’emploi. En gros, tout le monde, Pierre, Paul, Marie Jeanne, Lucie, Eric, et Jean y compris, tend a vivre mieux grace a tel accord, mais Jean perd son emploi dans l’affaire. Trump ne semble voir que ce dernier aspect-la des choses.

Tout ce qui fait reculer les echanges contribue a diminuer le niveau de vie des uns et des autres sans pour autant, ou necessairement faire retrouver son emploi a Jean. Malgre cela, Trump va surement essayer de renegocier plusieurs accords internationaux pour leur faire favoriser plus les entreprises americaines. Dans la mesure ou il reussit, cela equivaudra a une baisse de revenu reel pour les travailleurs se trouvant de chaque cote de l’accord. C’est ainsi parce que les bananes cultivees au Canada doivent couter plus cher que les bananes du Honduras. C’est ainsi aussi parceque des bananiers Honduriens verront leur emploi diminuer our disparaitre si les Canadiens produisent leurs propres bananes. “Dans la mesure…” peut facilement impliquer une baisse de revenu negligeable et meme pas perceptible.

En plus, toute modification unilaterale d’un traite peut amener l’autre partie a prendre des mesures retorsives, autement dit, a faire de meme: “Tu imposes un tarif douaniers sur mes bananes; j’impose un tarif douaniers sur tes boulons.” Le fait que la riposte est aussi suicidaire que l’attaque ne la rend pas moins probable. Cela arrive tout le temps. C’est ce qu’on nomme en Anglais: “trade wars”. Selon moi, l’election de Trump risque donc d’etre suivie par une baisse du niveau de vie generalisee profitant cependant et seulement a une classe ouvriere americaine pourtant en rapide declin demographique. Toujours a mon avis, la premiere consequence sera peu perceptible tandis que le profit politique qu’en tireront le President Trump et le Parti Republicain le seront.

Le rechauffement global

Il s’est avere difficile pour l’administration Obama autant que pour ses predecesseurs de faire accepter a un grand nombre d’Americains **: 1 qu’il existe un rechauffement global important; 2 qu’il est lié de pres aux activites humaines; 3 et qu’ il convient de s’inquieter des maintenant. Le President Trump ne va surement pas faire du zele la ou l’Apotre Obama a largement echoue. “Don’t hold your breath.” “Ne retenez pas votre souffle” en attendant qu’il agisse vigoureusement sur ce plan-la

*Oui, c’est vrai, le President -elu Trump a ete poursuivi pour escroquerie. Il s’agit d’une affaire d’universite privee plus ou moins bidon portant son nom. Il a use de la possibilite, selon la coutume americaine, de terminer l’affaire en offrant aux plaignants une somme suffisante pour qu’ils retirent leur plainte. La vie continue, donc.

** Moi compris.

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Trump Disappoints Already

I voted for Trump. I never had high expectations of Donald Trump but he has already disappointed me. All I was hoping for was that he would appoint Supreme Court Justices who believe in the Constitution and that he would inflict bruising wounds on politically correct speech. In truth, there is still an excellent chance he will accomplish the first and he did OK on the PC speech. The problem is that he also did something completely unexpected, something I had not even considered. He has quickly demonstrated a propensity to make peace. That’s wrong.

President-elect Trump has a few weeks to put pressure on the Democratic Party to purge its gangster-Clinton element completely and to eliminate many Obamanistas to mark disapproval of Pres. Obama’s failed policies. Note what I am NOT saying: I don’t call for the expulsion of the “Socialist” wing of the Demo Party, of Sanders’ followers. There probably would be no cause anyway because many will just split to rejoin Sen. Sanders who was not even a Democrat until 18 months ago. Above all, I am not calling for the destruction of the vanquished Democratic party. I believe in the two-party system and I believe in alternance in office. And there are many Democrats with whom real conservatives like me (unlike Trump who is not one) can enter into compromises. It’s just that we should not even begin to compromise with those who are notoriously bought and paid for, or too much, with those who tried too big things and failed.

I wouldn’t stop at a little pushing around of the Democratic Party. I believe in rewarding friends and punishing enemies. It’s satisfying and it encourages the place-keepers to do the right thing next time. Now, I would target Washington DC where an alliance of overpaid federal employees and black citizens marching in lockstep behind their white Democrat overseers gave Clinton 95% of their vote. D.C., the national capital, is not in the habit of making its own living as a city. It lives off federal subsidies. With Republican majorities in both houses, if I were Trump, I would work to reduce the D.C. appropriation. I am not mean-hearted so, I would not reduce them to abject poverty. I would hurt them enough so they and others noticed. Perhaps, I would hope to make buses come less often and parking fees to increase a lot.

There is another way to reach the same punitive ends, a more constructive way, but it’s too complicated. Washington DC has one of the highest school expenditures per student in the world and some of the worst school results. I wish Pres. Trump would ask Congress to decrease substantially the D.C. appropriation unless there was a legally binding promise that within three years, one of three of its students would be enrolled either in a charter school or in one of the existing hoisty-toity private schools.* (Reminder: In eight years, Pres. Obama’s daughters did not spend a single day in public school.)

With all this brave talk, I am aware of the fact that Trump did not win a big mandate. At this point, I am not sure whether he even won the popular vote. What is sure is that he did not win by a landslide. He should therefore engage in narrow but forceful action. The big paradox is that after all the drama, and after all the childish liberal melodrama that followed, it looks like under President Trump, a non-conservative, the American people are now going to get the kind of national orientation they like in general, from a center-right government.

PS Outside a disreputable bar last night, an unknown liberal with a sob in his voice made my night. He informed me confidentially that Trump was about to appoint Sarah Palin as Sec. of the Interior. What a lovely thought!

* Note for overseas readers: Washington DC schools are about 100% s racially segregated. Practically all the white students in D.C., largely children of the political class, attend private schools, paying schools.

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The Morning After the Election

It’s the morning after. The millions of Americans who were held in contempt for ten years have been made whole. The Hollywood stars, the college professors with one publication to their name, the political establishments of both parties, those who think they are an intellectual elite because they almost read three books in college, they all got mud in their faces, and that’s the sweetest thing. America elected a president who is too rich for the special interests to buy him. The big donors who paid into the Clinton Foundation slush fund lost all their money. F… them!

A thoroughly corrupt candidate with nothing to say aside from repeating claims of twenty years ago was decisively trounced by a political nobody, by a rank outsider. Her main aspiration, she said, was to break a (non-existent) glass ceiling. It’s been many years since anyone objected to the prospect of a female president. Does anyone think that the white blue-collar workers who put Trump over the top would have hesitated for a a second to vote for black, female professor and former Sec. of State Condoleeza Rice because she is black and because she is a woman? Sounds silly just asking the question.

The victory did not put me in a forgiving mood, nevertheless. Behavior is supposed to have consequences. The Republican notables who disparaged and insulted Donald Trump ought to make themselves very small. The whole Democratic Establishment should be forced to act like the loser it is. After all, losing House races and Senate races, and the presidential race, as well as mot governors’ races should make one humble even if one doesn’t want to be.  It’s going to be a steep  learning curve for the vacuous liberal elite. The big media which so shamelessly sided with Mrs Bill Clinton throughout the campaign ought to be laughed out of the public arena. They did not do themselves any favor in this race, on top of their declining readership.

 

I hope we will heard from Sen. Bernie Sanders who was cheated of his chance of win the Democrat primary. He has been quiet too long.

The future is fraught with uncertainties – as usual. One thing is sure though: The next Supreme Court appointments will not be the disasters they would have been under a Clinton presidency.  She would not doubt have looked for a transgender lesbian member of a racial minority to begin with. A President Trump will appoint Justices who will treat respectfully the Constitution that served us so well for 250 years.

This being said, Mrs Bill Clinton did win the popular vote. This is enough to limit the size of President Trump’s moral mandate. I hope Pres. Trump will act quickly to take advantage of the Republican domination of both houses to repeal the self-destructing Obamacare and to begin a restoration of funds to our armed forces. I hope and think that he will tear up the worthless, and mendacious agreement with Iran – which is not a treaty at all according to the US Constitution. (No Senate approval= no treaty.)  The mullahs ougth to be kept wondering what’s next. We know where they live.

Frankly, I never liked Trump much and I said so clearly in previous postings. The big unknown is what is he is going to do about our international trade treaties. They are good for Americans in general but deleterious to many. Something energetic had to be done at the federal level to alleviate all hardships traceable to trade agreements. The views President-elect Trum has expressed on trade treaties are plain wrong. Nearly everything he asserted about immigration is also factually wrong, to begin with.

On a personal note: I told my wife that since Hillary failed to break the glass ceiling, she, my wife had to begin obeying me. I wonder if that’s going to fly!

 

If you are reading this from overseas, I wonder if you are suprised. If you are, why do you think you were so misled?

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To Women Voters:

I take the liberty to point out a small number of issues that I am told are important to women. I do it because I used to be a respectable social scientist and because I have been retired for ten years which gives me plenty of time to stay informed.

Women voters have been misled for years by propaganda explicitly pointed at them. It wasn’t necessarily a conspiracy though but a kind of uncritical cultural convergence. Many of those who spread misinformation believe it themselves. So, in a way, they are morally innocent. That’s no reason to follow them down the wrong path, and down the cliff. Below are five topics about which you may have received false information that has been repeated over and over until it sounded true.

The first female president

There is a widespread feeling among American women that it’s time finally to elect a female president. For some, it’s a sort of symbolic restitution. I can’t speak to this because I am only a man. Other voters, both females and males, seem to think that a female presidency would result in significant improvements in the lives of American women. A relevant reminder: Eight years ago, Americans elected the first African-American president. For many, it was a vote filled with hope for positive change in the area of race. After two Obama administrations, almost eight years latter, it’s time to take stock. However you evaluate the Obama administrations in general, two facts stand out. First, race relations in American have not improved (to say the least). Second, African-Americans are not better off than they were eight years ago. In fact, they are slightly worse off economically. (My own position on having a woman President is straightforward: I would vote for Stanford Professor Condoleeza Rice, for President, in a heartbeat.)

Abortion

The 1973 Roe vs Wade decision made abortion on demand available throughout the territory of the United States. Candidate Trump has provided a list of potential nominees to the Supreme Court . Some of those nominees are pro-life. This raises the question of what would happen in the unlikely event that Roe vs Wade were overturned by a new Supreme Court. You may have been led to believe that abortion would become illegal. That’s simply not true. Legislation on abortion – if any – would revert to the individual states as the Constitution requires (same as murder, theft, sequestration, and spitting on the sidewalk). The likelihood that all fifty states would forbid abortion on demand is simply zero. The likelihood that half of them would is also zero, I believe. The worst case scenario is that abortion would become geographically inconvenient. (In case you wonder, I believe, just like former President Bill Clinton, that abortion should be legal, safe, and rare.) There is no chance that not electing Mrs Clinton will make abortion illegal.

Pay disparities

We have been told that women received interior pay for equal work for so long that it has almost become the truth. Even my local female Republican candidate for Congress uses this line. It’s not the truth. The reality is that women receive unequal pay for unequal work. There are various reasons why this is. (A broader treatment of this matter is on my blog and accessible through these links: https://factsmatter.wordpress.com/2014/04/13/unequal-pay-for-women-only-part-one and https://factsmatter.wordpress.com/2014/04/15/unequal-pay-for-women-only-part-two-there-really-is-a-part-one) In fact, paying women unequal pay for equal work has been against federal law for more than thirty years. Doing it is an invitation to costly class action suits. It’s probably important not to vote for someone on the basis of “facts” that are not facts at all. And then, there is the issue of why anyone would mislead you so badly. (Myself, I am going to vote for the Republican lady candidate for Congress although I think she should check her facts better.)

Immigration

Candidate Clinton has said clearly that she is is for open borders. This may come from a generous heart. Yet there are too many people from poor countries who want to come to the US to live. Even, if all of them are good people, the USA is like a lifeboat: If too many climb aboard, the boat capsizes and everybody drowns, the original passengers (Americans as well as existing immigrants) and the newcomers (would-be immigrants). To remain a decent society, a generous society, the US has to somehow restrict admission. Open borders is not a possible policy, it’s a dangerous fantasy. (In case you are wondering: I am an immigrant myself, so is my wife.)

Civility

Candidate Trump bragged – thirteen years ago – about making crude sexual gestures. There has not been a single formal complaint or any charge brought against him on this account. That’s although – unlike former Pres. Bill Clinton at the same stage – he has temptingly deep pockets, the kind of pockets that would give fighting courage to any moderately aggressive attorney. Candidate Trump often also has a filthy mouth, and he occasionally uses sexist language, that’s a fact. Candidate Clinton is good friends with and approves of, and patronizes artists who routinely sing of perpetrating gross sexual violence on women (including in the last days of her campaign). They too use obscene words. They do so routinely, every time they perform. (I don’t use such language myself but my wife of forty years does, another story, obviously.)

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Pre-election Distemper

I warn you that I am not in a good mood today. Read at your own risk.

Breathless news: The best college soccer team in America was just suspended by university authorities. The players’ trespass is to have been discovered scoring members of the female soccer team on their physical attractiveness. Apparently, they relied on a scale of 0 to 10. The horror! I don’t know how much such scoring women do. Whatever it is, I think they should do it more. It would save many from making horrible mistakes in the area of marriage. Here is how it works, young woman: If you don’t like how he looks, you won’t like him in bed. If you don’t like him in bed, everything he does will annoy you. That’s how Mother Nature fixed it.

I wonder if the political generals at the Pentagon will resist the temptation to serve Pres. Obama and the Democratic Party a big victory in Mosul on the eve of the election. In the meantime the sickening agony of Aleppo in Syria continues. Both the Syrian dictator’s forces and the Russians bomb civilians at will there. There is a moral consensus in the US that it’s not our fight.

Fate will punish us for our indifference to all that suffering and it won’t take long. The tyrant Putin is being encouraged by American passivity. He does not even have much choice. With the price of oil down, Russian citizens’ fragile and modest prosperity it threatened. Russian military victories against unarmed civilians are what Putin feeds his people. For dessert, they get the completely unexpected goody of prevailing over the USA. It must taste like a small revenge after the bitter debacle of the Soviet Union, another avatar of Russian nationalism.

The stage is set for another Russian military adventure, one where an emboldened Putin, by mistake, goes on to step into an area that Americans somehow, for traditional and for sentimental reasons, feel they have to protect. American military personnel will die because we did nothing while Aleppo was being murdered. Remember, you read it here first.

Another American soldier was killed in a forgotten area of Afghanistan because he did not have enough brothers around him to be safe doing what he was doing.

A black church was recently set afire in Alabama. A slogan was written on a part of the wall that was not supposed to burn down, I suppose. It said, “Vote for Trump.” Like that. N. S. ! Some credulous fools will accept the incident, as intended. When the local police completes its investigation, the main suspect will turn out to be black. Too late; the damage will have been done.

On 11/3/16, the Wall Street Journal had a long in-depth article about the Trump family’s business interests in foreign countries. As it happens, in some cases, their local business partners are connected to, or related to, or simply know, prominent politicians. The money amounts mentioned are small for any foreign business venture. Makes you wonder why the WSJ would publish such boring tripe . I am afraid I understand the underlying logic though . One candidate has sold out to foreign interest multiple times. The other candidate MIGHT do the same through his family IF he is elected.

This is crazy, of course. I don’t know if the existence of this article results from a sort of misplaced sense of balance whereas my real mass murders are weighed against the homicide you might just commit in the future because you own a kitchen knife. I hope such silliness is the explanation. I wouldn’t swear on it. The Wall Street Journal, this flagship of conservative rationality, may have begun to tack already. It shows in its reporting on terrorism. If an unknown party explodes a car bomb at the door of a Shiite mosque during prayer time, killing 100 civilians, the Journal identifies the doers as “militants.” It’s not a slip of the pen; it’s every time. If the “militants” shout Allahu Akbar, that does not make them “Islamists.” Editorially, in the Wall Street Journal, as with the Obama administration, there is no such thing as an “Islamist terrorist.” Osama is smiling in his watery grave. (He needs a smile because he has been trying to finish that business with the 72 year-old virgin.)

Soon, I am going to be called an extremist when all I am doing is stand in place, faithful to the same old values for more than 230 years.

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Dear Millenials:

Many of you seem to prepare to vote for Mrs Clinton in spite of what she and her allies did to the once promising candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders. It seems also that accumulating evidence of her corruption has little effect on you. In part, it may be a diminishing returns phenomenon: The first mouthful of ice cream makes you very happy, the eleventh, not so much. Or, you might think of evidence of your beloved’s infidelity. The first revelation could kill you;…. In another part, – and I am speculating here – you may think that Mr Trump is so obscene, and so often sounds like a madman, that we can’t have him as a Commander-in-Chief, no matter what. In addition, Mrs Clinton promised you a lot of free stuff and you may be suppressing the thought that there aren’t enough of the very rich to tax to pay for all those gifts. (Look into your heart!)

This short essay is an attempt to remind you of your own interests. Mrs Clinton has said nothing – or so little that it’s easy to miss – about economic growth. One exception: She says she will follow Pres. Obama’s lead in shutting down the cheap energy that comes from American soil. That’s the same cheap energy that underlies America’s economic success.

Mr Trump has announced clearly that if he were president, he would cut taxes in general, and he would do his best to decrease the impact of regulations on business. You may be skeptical, thinking that a President Trump would lower taxes only for the rich. Well, even if that were true (it’s not) it would likely leave you better off than you are now. The rich and the very rich don’t eat the money they obtain, legitimately or not. They don’t bury it in their sumptuous manicured backyards. They invest it and this, in turn, creates job and a demand for workers. When employers compete for workers, wages and salaries go up as on an escalator. The rise affects positively even those whose labor is not directly in demand.

You might be cool to the idea of decreasing the weight of regulations. After all, you probably like the fact that the quality of your tap water is regulated (in most places.) However, many regulations are unnecessary and even the useful ones impose at least a bureaucratic burden on companies thus limiting their job creation. I remind you that many towns and counties have employees pension funds as their main financial problem. At the federal level, the problem is probably worse but it is obscured by the federal government’s huge ability to borrow. (By the way, you and your children will inherit the debt unless we experience high economic growth for many years.)

Here is an example of the weight of regulations from Santa Cruz, California, where I live. The city ordered me to repair a sidewalk in front of my house that has been deformed by a tree on my property, the same tree the city forbade me from cutting several years ago. I got three estimates from concrete contractors. In the two lowest estimate, the cost of a city permit accounts for about 1/6 of the total. (Yes, read this again: I have to pay the city for the privilege of making repairs I am forced to make by the city as a result of the city ‘s previous action.) It’s clear that the repair is going to cost more than it should, Either, the contractor will do less work because of this 1/6th burden. or, I will have less money to spend, to hire another company to paint my house, for example. Either way, city bureaucrats are eating potential income that would be better in the pockets of others.

A President Trump would also appoint Supreme Court Justices more likely to be favorable to enterprise than anyone appointed by Mrs Clinton.

Those are difficult things to think about if you have a job and others issues to deal with. Here is an easy way to quantify the problem.

Under the Obama policies that Mrs Clinton has promised to continue, the economy (GDP, roughly ) has grown only by about 1.5% a year.

Under Trump, there is a good chance it would grow at a historically normal 3.5%.

To get a handle on the difference, imagine you have $10,000 to invest, one time. At 1.5% per year, after ten years, you would have $11,600.

At 3.5%, you would have $14,100 after the same ten years.

The difference between the two figure, $2,500 is all potential investment and therefore additional employment or increased wages.

After twenty years, the figures are $13,500 and $19,900 respectively. That’s a difference of about $6,400 attributable entirely to low vs high growth rates. $6,400 is large amount of extra money to invest and to create jobs with. Remember also that it’s more than half of the amount you started with. ($10,000).

Briefly put: In a national economy growing at 1.5% many people or most people are morose because jobs are hard to come by and they don’t pay well. In an economy growing at a normal 3.5%, there is a lot of optimism in the air, nearly anyone can afford specialty beers, and having roommates who are not friends or lovers becomes an old bad dream.

I hope you will think of the next twenty years when you cast your ballot.

Please, think of sharing this essay on-line.

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