American Elephants


Nationalism: Is it good or a bad thing? And What do we mean by Nationalism anyway?an? by The Elephant's Child

In a speech at Hillsdale College in October, Victor Davis Hanson talks about Nationalism. Is is good or bad — and what are the lessons from history? It’s fairly long, but worth every minute, if you are satiated after turkey and all the fixings, and don’t want to move for a while…  or save it for another day, but do watch it when you can. Lots of food for thought. important food for thought.



Victor Davis Hanson on “The Case For Trump” by The Elephant's Child

This was first posted in May, this year. I think it’s time to review it once again, because there is so much here and it is so valuable. Please watch the whole thing, you’ll be glad you did. It’s a long conversation, but you can spread it out over several days if need be.



Patrick Moore, the Sensible Environmentalist by The Elephant's Child

Patrick Moore was one of the founders of Greenpeace, and deeply interested in saving the world’s whales when Japan was increasing their interest in whaling. Japanese whalers have for many years exploited a loophole in the founding treaty of the International Whaling Commission which allows whaling for ‘scientific research’. Whaling was a major industry, peaking in 1846 to1852 for whale oil, spermaceti oil and whalebone for ladies corsets. (think Moby Dick). The Japanese have announced a return to whaling in July of this year.

Moore came to environmentalism because of who he is and where he was born, and left Greenpeace because he is an honest man. He believes firmly that science and environmentalism can go together. He is not impressed with the Green New Deal, to put it mildly.



The Big Singapore Meeting: Big Breakthrough or Waste of Time? by The Elephant's Child

President Trump has gone to Singapore, had a good meeting with Kim Jong Un of North Korea, and returned home to the utter consternation of the media. They were eager for some kind of catastrophe. Trump is too new, too ill-informed about international affairs not to have made a complete mess of it. Here, from the White House, is the joint statement of President Donald J. Trump of the United States of America and Chairman Kim Jong Un of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea at the Singapore Summit. (You might find it fun to look up the Democratic People’s Republics of the world and see just who they are, and how they’re doing.)

The agreement is not all that much. They agree to try to make peace. They agree to try to commit to de-nuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and they will commit to recovering POW/MIA remains. Nancy Pelosi threatened that the Senate would have to confirm it. It’s not a treaty, Nancy, there’s nothing to confirm. They had a meeting and agreed to try to do a little more.

President Trump said that the entire effort was dedicated to Otto Warmbier, the young American who made the mistake of taking a propaganda poster in Korea, whereupon the Koreans threw him into prison, brutally mistreated him and when he was released, he barely got home before he died.

I’m including links to some articles that capture some of the ideas that explain what is going on. The first is “How Twitter Diplomacy Works” by Thomas Farnan. He begins:

President Trump this week will bust 68 years of diplomatic white paper inertia and meet the leader of a nation with which America has been at war since 1950. President Trump this week will bust 68 years of diplomatic white paper inertia and meet the leader of a nation with which America has been at war since 1950. …

Do read the whole thing.

The White House prepared for the meeting carefully. They learned that Kim was a big movie fan with a huge library of movie videos, and they prepared their own—which Trump played for the Chairman on an iPad. Scott Adams (Dilbert) discusses the video brilliantly here:

There has been some angry objection from Conservatives that Mr. Trump buttered up Kim, said he cared about his people, (but he doesn’t and he;s a brutal dictator and murderer. ) Yes, but refer back to the simple statement that we have been at war since 1950.

There are some underlying things that we just don’t know about. North Korea has been a subsidiary of China, and China’s Xi has ambitions. How North Korea fits into that we don’t know. Useful or annoyance? When Kim shot off this last batch of nuclear tests, something happened to his test site, and the mountain collapsed, but we don’t know how bad it was or what it means.

Our media wants to portray the whole thing as a colossal failure of one sort or another. They want Trump embarrassed, disgraced (TDS kicks in here) so you can’t rely on much that they have to say. They’re already going on about the failure of Trump’s G-7 meeting and how he insulted the Canadians etc. ,etc. Here’s some useful commentary on that: American Greatness: “Trump is Right: G7 Needs a Wake-Up Call on Trade.” From Investor’s Business Daily: President Trump Didn’t Sigh G-7’s Leftist Agenda—Smart Move”.

From The Wall Street Journal: Why Trump Clashes With Europe” (subscription barrier), and THE WEEK: “If Europe is serious about challenging Trump, it should actually challenge him” by Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry.

This is not all that much reading, you will find it valuable. There are some important insights here. And keep that one phrase in mind: “68 years of white paper diplomatic inertia.”

 



About Draining That Swamp… by The Elephant's Child

How about a little good news for a change? You may be astonished to learn that it comes from Canada. Conrad Black says that “the Canadian media has failed in its coverage of the biggest political news in the world in many years. Trump is the most successful U.S. president since Reagan.” (Do read the whole thing.)

But no one relying on the Canadian media would be aware that he has more than doubled the economic growth rate, reduced illegal immigration by about 80 per cent, withdrawn from the insane Paris Climate accord, helped add trillions to U.S. stock market values, created nearly two million new jobs, led the rout of ISIL, and gained full Chinese adherence to the unacceptability of North Korean nuclear military capability. He will probably pass the greatest tax cuts and reforms since Reagan, if not Lyndon Johnson, by Christmas, and may throw out the most unpopular feature of Obamacare, the coercive mandate, with it.

And here’s Victor Davis Hanson at American Greatness:

After 10 months of governance, Trump’s deregulations, a foreign policy of principled realism, energy agendas, judicial appointments, efforts at tax reform and health care recalibration, cabinet appointments, and reformulation at the Departments of Education, the EPA, and Interior seem so far conservative to the core.

In the few areas where Trump conceivably differed from his 16 primary Republican rivals—immigration, trade, and foreign policy—the 20th-century Republican/conservative orthodoxy was actually closer to Trump’s positions than to those of recent Republican nominees, John McCain or Mitt Romney.

Vast majorities of conservatives always favored enforcement of federal immigration law rather than tolerance of sanctuary cities. They wanted to preserve legal, meritocratic, diverse, and measured immigration, not sanction open borders. And they championed the melting pot over the identity politics of the salad bowl.

After the daily criticism and angst from the junior journalists, it’s nice to hear about the president’s accomplishments for a change, for there are a lot of them.  A little celebration is in order.



Yes, The Climate Is Changing, Just as It Has Done for Millions of Years. by The Elephant's Child

After President Trump withdrew from the Paris Climate Accords, many lefties seem to be asking “But don’t you believe the climate is changing?” Of course the climate is changing. That is what climate does. You have perhaps heard of the Ice Age when much of America was covered with an ice sheet? Or the Little Ice Age from which  we have been recovering? Here is a simple graph showing the natural climate variability of the past 2,000 years showing the average of 18 non-tree ring proxies that coincide with known events in human  history. Note the decimal points. Water freezes at 32º Fahrenheit or at 0º Celsius. The chart shows temperature anomaly.

The Medieval Warm Period (900 to 1300 AD) was the finest weather known to man. Ice sheets, glaciers and sea ice contracted enabling sea exploration and settlements at higher latitudes. Villages and farms were established on Greenland and grain crops were sown and cattle and sheep were raised.   Cathedrals were built in Europe, and monasteries and universities. Population increased, food was more plentiful. The warming was global. The Little Ice Age began in the late 13th Century with a decrease in solar activity. There was crop failure, famine, disease, war and depopulation. The Little Ice Age ended around 1850 and it has been warming a little ever since.

A little increased Carbon Dioxide in the atmosphere, a fertilizer for plants, makes progress in human well-being. The greening of the Earth feeds hungry people. Louis Pasteur’s germ theory and the principles of vaccination, pasteurization, and the cause of disease was a monumental advance. Then there’s Jenner( smallpox vaccine) and Lister( antiseptics) and Fleming(penicillin). Then there’s our own Norman Borlaug, father of the green revolution who is referred to as the man who saved a billion lives, with the development of high yielding crops. May I suggest that Liberal angst over President Trump’s exit from the misleading Paris Climate Accords is a wee bit misplaced?



History, Revisited. by The Elephant's Child




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