American Elephants


Are You Surprised at How Low the Democrats Will Go? by The Elephant's Child

Desperate, desperate, desperate Democrats. They have called President Trump every name in the bad name book, they have used every gimmick from Kathy Griffin holding up the mock bloody severed head of the President of the United States, to huge diapered baby balloons, marches on the Washington Mall, with rude signs indicating the hatred and despair of a (not quite) united American womanhood at the resident of the White House, and of course, leaving the usual mess behind for someone else to clean up.

A Special Counsel was appointed to investigate the possible collusion of the President of the United States with Russia, for that nation to interfere in the elections because if Vladimir Putin had not interfered, Hillary would have won. The President needed to be impeached, and Mr. Mueller was supposed to come up with the evidence of high crimes and misdemeanors. but in order to be authorized to investigate impeachment, there first has to be some evidence of a high crime. Ooops.

Devin Nunes is Chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, and they are looking into the strange behavior of the leadership of the FBI. Devin Nunes has been attacked by the Democrats here and in California, and now President Trump has ordered the documents of the Russian collusion investigation released to the public with redactions removed, except those essential to national security. It seems to be panic time, and oddly, John Brennan, former Director of the CIA seems very upset.

With all this hullabaloo going on, President Trump seems to be doing a rather splendid job in office. Vice President Mike Pence said the economy is booming because the Trump administration is rolling back Obama administration policies. Not, former President Obama, because you started the boom. More than four million jobs created since Trump took office, record low black and Hispanic unemployment, wages rising at the fastest pace in a decade , and the highest middle class income in recorded history. The Left’s war on energy is over, red tape is being destroyed and unnecessary regulations eliminated. The economy is growing at a healthy four percent, and President Trump is keeping his promises to the people.

Democrat propaganda has supposed to have turned the people against this unworthy (he tweets) occupant of the White House, and it’s not happening. His tweets are supposed to be “unpresidential” and unbecoming to the dignity of the office. Nobody seems to have noticed that they are largely strategic.

A President of the United States is just an ordinary man (or, at some point a woman) with all the flaws and foibles of an ordinary human being. We’re electing him as a CEO of the country to tidy up the place and keep things running and keep us out of trouble for four years, and if he does a good job, we’ll give him another four years. If you look back through the long list of presidents, there aren’t very many outstanding ones. We make a big mistake by falling in love with a president. We are not electing royalty, but a plain — one of us. We have kind of assumed that someone qualified for the presidency needs to have experience in government, but that may be wrong. We’ve thought that governors are our best bet, but we’ve got a large number of governors that are making a colossal mess of their states. It would seem that we need someone who knows how to manage things and get things done, in spite of political and media warfare.  Need I remind you that President Trump is donating his salary to the country?

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We Know the Economy is Growing: Here’s the Proof by The Elephant's Child

The U.S. Census Bureau’s annual report on U.S. Income was released on Wednesday, and it underscores how the Obama administration’s policies of redistribution retarded growth for years. From the Wall Street Journal:

Real median household incomes ticked up 1.8% to $61,372 between 2016 and 2017 while the poverty rate dropped 0.4 percentage points to 12.3 % according to the Census Bureau. Income gains were strongest among Hispanic households (3.7%). The poverty rates for blacks and Hispanics fell to 21.2% and 18.3% respectively, the lowest since at least 1972.

Incomes increased across the distribution range with the share of people earning less than $15,000 declining 0.3 percentage points to 10.7, the lowest level since 2007. The proportion of households earning more than $150.000 increased by 0.7 percentage points to 14.7%.

Investment earnings have driven up incomes at the higher level. At lower levels the income growth appears to be due to more people working more. Last year the number of people with employment earnings rose by 1.7 million last year, the numbers of people working full-time and year-round grew 2.4 million. This has lifted nearly one million people out of poverty in 2017.

Former president Obama tried to take credit for the surge of good news, but the slower growth over the past 8 years has meant that lower-skilled people who were working part time have moved to full time jobs, though that has slightly depressed the statistical growth in median earnings for full-time workers. Employers are scrounging for workers with job openings hitting a record high of 6.9 million in July.

Democrats are always sure that economic growth is simply the rich growing richer, for they assume that is who gets the tax cuts. They are sure that more direction from those in charge, and more regulation will help business to grow. But freedom is always the spark. The people who have built a business and grown it, know what they need, and a little more freedom to keep a little more of their own money usually means they invest it where it will do the most good.

That suggests that perhaps the bureaucrats in D.C. don’t really know more about running a business than the deplorable folk out there actually doing it. The small businessmen of America are not the ones getting in trouble for improperly using campaign funds on vacation travel.

Then I ran onto this article about Hillary’s five point plan to “build an economy that works for everyone.” It’s an excellent run-down of all the reasons we didn’t vote for Hillary.

A 100-days jobs plan: Break through Washington gridlock to make the boldest investment in good-paying jobs since World War II. Hillary will fight to pass a plan in her first 100 days in office to invest in infrastructure, manufacturing, research and technology, clean energy, and small businesses. She will strengthen trade enforcement, and she’ll say no to trade deals like TPP that don’t meet a high enough bar of creating good-paying jobs. And she will make the U.S. the clean energy superpower of the world—with half a billion solar panels installed by the end of her first term and enough clean, renewable energy to power every home in America within 10 years of her taking office.

There’s more wonderfulness, do read the whole thing. Its an excellent summary of why Democrats just don’t understand free market economics.



Just About What I Expected. Former President Obama Speaks. by The Elephant's Child

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Former President Barack Obama received an ethics in government award at the University of Illinois, and took advantage of the occasion to trash Donald Trump, claim that  any recovery that was happening started in his administration, and criticized everything about Trump’s presidency, calling it a “dark period” in American history. Periods of progress in America were frequently followed by periods of resistance to change and a “step back”.

Gosh, I can remember back to Obama’s Inauguration, and an excited young black woman was thrilled that she would not have to worry about paying her bills, because Obama was going to pay them. Many black Americans had not believed that a black man could be elected to the presidency, and were justifiably proud and thrilled that it could happen. Many Americans who did not vote for him, thought that having the first black president was probably a good thing for the country.

Obama helped out our black citizens by giving them welfare and health care, and raising taxes to pay for it. Donald Trump has given them jobs—real, good paying jobs, 201,000 new jobs just in August, as worker wages have surged to a nine year high. The new unemployment rate remained unchanged at 3.9%.

Obama was grateful that President George W. Bush remained quiet during his presidency, and did not criticize him, and promised to stay quiet during the Trump administration, but the horrors of a surging economy and thousands getting off of food stamps was just too much for him.

Over the past few decades the politics of division and resentment and paranoia has unfortunately found a home in the Republican party.

Obama referred to Trump as a “bully” who deserved to be rejected by the American people. Republicans, he said were appealing to “tribe”by trying to divide people by race and gender. Excuse me, Who is trying to divide Americans by race and gender? That theme seems to be coming out of our universities, and last time I looked, they are not havens of Republicans or conservatives.  He even blasted Republicans for “cozying up to the KGB” He pointed to a rise in white-nationalism and racial division, and attacked Republicans for stoking resentment in order to remain in power.

We are Americans, we’re supposed to stand up to bullies, not follow them,” he said. “We’re supposed to stand up to discrimination. And we’re sure as heck supposed to stand up clearly and unequivocally to Nazi sympathizers.

After any president’s tenure in office, everyone tries to sum up what worked, and what didn’t. Any administration will have high points and failures. George W. was wise to refrain from comment in recognition that future historians will evaluate and sum up the job he did, and his present comments won’t help, and could hinder. Good lesson, Obama might take notice.

More than anything, he attempted to take credit for today’s surging economy.  Good luck with that one.

(slightly updated for clarity)



A Class In the Government’s Separation of Powers by The Elephant's Child

In the circus of yesterday’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearings on the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court, Nebraska Senator Ben Sasse, the youngest member of the committee delivered a “master class” on “the proper allocation of authority” among the three branches of government the judicial, legislative and executive branches. It was a much needed clarification, and a roadmap that Brett Kavanaugh has followed throughout his twelve years on the federal bench.

James Copland, writing for the Manhattan Institute, has spelled out Ben Sasse’s important contribution to the proceedings. Nebraska Senator Sasse holds a PhD in American history from Yale. Congress’s unfortunate delegation of authority has been a major problem for years. Congress doesn’t want to be bothered with administering the laws they pass, so they pass them off to agencies to put into action.

That means that the Congress doesn’t get the pushback they need for dumb moves, don’t get the feedback on how their ideas are working, and in general getting that constant feedback would make them more responsible about the laws they issue. Do read the whole thing, it’s not that long, but illuminating.



The First Day of Kavanaugh Hearings, and Democrats Embarrass Themselves. by The Elephant's Child

Today is the first day of the hearings on the nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to be a Justice of the Supreme Court. Why are we not surprised to learn that Democrats plotted to disrupt the Kavanaugh hearing? Dick Durbin admitted that Democrats plotted over the weekend during a conference call by Charles Schumer on how to use protests and interruptions to disrupt the hearings.  Democrats obligingly threw a tantrum, interrupting the proceedings 62 times without waiting for proper recognition from the chair, speaking out of turn. Dianne Feinstein  claimed that “More people will die in mass shootings if Brett Kavanaugh gets confirmed.” Which is a remarkably silly statement.

The usual Hollywood far-lefties screeched and demonstrated clearly that they have no understanding whatsoever of the Supreme Court, the job of the justices, and how the law works. They also don’t seem to grasp the idea that their big mouths and embarrassing behavior has meant that a lot of Americans have quit watching current Hollywood movies in favor of  British movies, or old or even silent movies instead. Some of us read instead, and a good book beats another car chase easily.

The Supreme Court chooses what cases put before the court that they will hear. It’s cases that cannot be solved successfully by a lower court. If Judge Kavanaugh were an ardent opponent of abortion or a passionate member of the NRA (he’s not) he would have to recuse himself. And he would have to wait for a difficult case that suggested that Roe v. Wade was somehow improperly decided. The idea that a conservative justice threatens laws that the Left holds dear is not only silly, but demonstrates ignorance of our independent judiciary. It has long been clear that Democrats are poorly informed about just how our Constitutional Republic is supposed to work. When you are opposed to Capitalism, that goes with the territory.

Brett Kavanaugh is an outstanding nomination to the Supreme Court. He has a long record of carefully conceived decisions, some of which the Supreme Court has referred to in their decisions. The American Bar Association has recommended him highly. The Democrats have investigated him, every case he has ruled on, they have examined his wife’s emails and decisions as a town manager of the small incorporated city where they live (one restaurant). Before they were married, she served as personal secretary to President George W. Bush, and was a personal assistant while he was Governor of Texas. The Bushes attended the Kavanaugh wedding. Having found no dirt so far, Democrats want the record of every moment that Kavanaugh was part of the Bush administration. He may well be the best qualified nominee ever to appear before Congress.

Kamala Harris (clearly running for the Democrat’s nomination for President) made a fool of herself with interruptions and ill-informed statements.



A Brief History Lesson: What Was The Cold War? by The Elephant's Child

British historian Andrew Roberts explains what the Cold War was all about. Oddly enough, even those who lived through it are apt to forget. The left really thought that communism might be a better system.

You still hear the echoes in Nancy Pelosi’s comments  that tax cuts have nothing to do with growing an economy, but are simply gifts for the very wealthy who clearly don’t deserve it. (That’s what the Left wants the poor to believe) Since she is very wealthy, who knows what she really believes. Democrats want people to pay more taxes so they will have more money to give to the poor to buy their votes.

The idea that free people, able to keep more of their own money, can create, invent, expand their businesses, or act on their own ambitions, somehow is not as important as control by their betters.

It’s followed by a fireside chat with Dennis Praeger.



Just What Does Being “Presidential” Mean? by The Elephant's Child

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I have always suspected that Leftist ideology would prefer that we were more like Europe. Not sure what that means—Kings and Queens instead of boring old presidents? More castles for the exceedingly rich so they don’t have to build their own? Surely it’s not more wars. I also suspect that it’s partly because they are more than a little unfamiliar with history. They are very big on blaming America for slavery and racism, apparently unaware that slavery was the way of the world pretty much until the British and America banned it. American Indians practiced slavery. The vast majority of the trans-Atlantic slave trade went to the sugar islands of the Caribbean and South America, not here.

My point, however, is that Americans don’t understand the efforts made by the Founding Fathers, the early settlers, and historians well-versed in history to not favor any kind of royal trappings, they wanted us simple, ordinary, common, down-to-earth, good people. After the Revolution, when we thought we were done with British royalty, many wanted George Washington to be a King, but he would have no truck with that. He really didn’t want to be the President —he just wanted to go back to his farm. Whenever someone got to yearning for more elegance, there was usually someone else to remind that we don’t do that sort of thing. There was just an extensive article this week about the tendency of residents of “the swamp” to want to buy great art (with taxpayer dollars) to make Washington DC  a little classier.

Which brings me to the vast complaints about President Trump. The problem is the tweets. Of course it’s the language too, the Queens accent, (Dan Bongino, who is from Queens. says Trump talks like someone from Queens who is in the construction business.) Even the Never Trumpers always emphasize the tweets. The insults, the name-calling, the criticism. He’s Not Presidential!! they cry, forgetting that tweeting was not available to the previous 44 or 43.  I don’t mind because it tells us what he’s thinking, and I find that helpful information. And if they knew a little more presidential history, they wouldn’t yammer on about being “unpresidential.”

But “presidential”— if there is some particular standard for presidents, I must have missed it. We have had a very few exceptional, a lot of more or less OK ones, some marginally competent and some downright awful. The party that is not in power always has nasty thing to say about the president that is in power. Presidents are only ordinary men (so far) with all the faults and quirks that go along with being human, who are maybe a little more ambitious that the rest of us. We elect them to run the country for four years, and if they do a very good job we may give them another four years. We ask a lot of a president, but he gets to surround himself with the best advisors he possibly can get along with, but he’s the boss. When the board of directors of a corporation needs a new CEO do they sit around the table complaining about his funny hair, or his tan out of a bottle? They want someone who can make the company work better, earn more money, make better products, hire better people, make the company grow and prosper.

But isn’t that exactly what Trump is doing? Making the country grow and prosper? Black and Hispanic unemployment is the lowest in history. Small business prospering, large business prospering. But the Media says Trump is a racist? (see previous post) No, former Speaker Pelosi, tax cuts are not just for the rich. Everybody benefits, and the rich don’t necessarily benefit the most. And announcing that the first thing you’d do when you get back in power is to end the tax cuts immediately requires an immediate remedial course in economics, as well as a failure to get back in power.

When you cut taxes, people are able to keep more of their own money, and invest it in new businesses, new products, new ideas, or just buy something they’ve needed for years. When the government dumps dumb regulations that are not accomplishing anything, people are freed up to do new things. But the environment! Trump is getting rid of regulations. Yes. filling the gas tanks of America’s cars with fuel made of corn (food) was a dumb idea. The Paris Climate Accords were a scheme to get the rich countries to give a big chunk of their wealth to poor developing countries for free, and pretending that it had some effect on the climate (it didn’t) was a dumb idea.  What the Left hates is that the country is prospering under Trump, and there’s a possibility that he might get re-elected, which accounts for much of the venom.




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