Quote of the Day

Is Trump any “stupider and delusional” than Joe Biden? (A separate but nonetheless pertinent question: is Trump any more dangerous and destructive than was Barack Obama?)

I think we can agree that Trump is not an intellectual. All things considered, though, I am not so sure that is a liability in a political leader.

Back in 2015-2016, I wrote probably a score of columns making fun of Donald Trump. He is a man that, in some ways, cries out for caricature. I was at that time backing Ted Cruz. Then Cruz dropped out and it was Trump or Hillary. To me, that was an easy choice. I regarded Hillary as the most corrupt serious candidate for President in history (I did not then know about Biden’s unfathomable corruption). So I cast my lot, somewhat reluctantly at first, in with Trump. But the more I listened to him, the more I was impressed with what he said: about the inner cities, energy, regulation, the border, the media, foreign affairs. True, he was not a master of the honeyed phrase, but I agreed with him about many things.

Then there was his actual performance. He actually accomplished almost everything he promised to do (the great exception was getting rid of Obamacare: John McCain, in his last fit of pique, prevented that).

Trump pushed through a huge tax cut that benefitted the majority of taxpayers and increased federal revenue by billions. He exploited our energy resources and made America energy independent. He drastically curtailed illegal immigration. He drastically reduced the regulatory burden on businesses. Until Covid hit, the economy boomed. Inflation and unemployment were low—minority unemployment was the lowest on record—and wages, especially wages at the lower end of the scale, soared.

Trump managed to get three Supreme Court Justices and hundreds of federal judges approved. He challenged the destructive ideology of critical race theory and what’s come to be called DEI. In foreign affairs, he moved our embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, something that had been promised since the time of Bill Clinton but which was never done. He brought into being the Abraham Accords, a world historical achievement, in my opinion, which should have won him the Nobel Peace Prize. He destroyed ISIS. He rebuilt the US military infrastructure. And he did all this, remember, to the steady drum beat of a hostile media and deep state apparatus that kept screaming about (we know now) illusionary Russian collusion, etc.

Trump’s two biggest liabilities, in my view, were incontinent spending and poor personnel choices. I am afraid that he has not learned to forgo the former. About the latter, though, he seems to have made great strides. If he is elected we won’t see anymore Rex Tillersons or Jim Mattises. Whether he will be able to navigate the perilous, weed- and snake-infested waters of The Swamp is another question. I have recommended he bypass Washington altogether, beginning with holding his inauguration elsewhere. I don’t think he will, though, and I think it is an open question whether he can triumph over the entrenched elite that actually governs the country.

But the bottom line, for me, is that Trump was, despite the monolithic hostility of the establishment, an extraordinarily successful president. Was that the work of a “seriously stupid and delusional” figure? I don’t think so, but opinions, I’ve noticed, vary.

From Defying the Odds: Trump’s Bronx Speech and Its Impact. RTWT.

6 thoughts on “Quote of the Day

  1. I saw Trump work in NYC – okay played the game but there were times where he stepped in an accomplished what people said could not be done. I am thinking The Ice Rink in Central Park. there are others but in general he is a New Yorker, We get things done. May not be the way you would have done, may not have been very elegant but they get done.

  2. If you get too disillusioned with Trump, you can always vote for the Libertarian offering. Hahahahahaha!

  3. So, verdict(s) are in. And btw, I am not a huge Trumper; he’s an incredibly flawed candidate and person, but the alternative is simply a dimwitted institutionalized evil (controlled by others) and eventually fatally destructive to the Country.

    As I see it, the only way to peacefully enact change is to take a VERY long view (for the US)–at least two generations. There has to be an organic-growing-to-massive-scale initiative, funded by conservative billionaires and grass roots, to sow the seeds of the philosophies of the Founders and other ‘great minds’ (Sowell, Hayek, etc.).

    The D-Mafia will stop at nothing–absolutely nothing–to gain and hold power (per Angelo Codevilla’s spot-on writing). We need a way to seed and subsequently permeate/control all our institutions with constitutional conservatives (I am not saying social conservatives). A way to make it so that in 30 years, when the D machine is looking to continue to brainwash voters to protect their grift and control, they find voter base that is less than 40% receptive to their views–and at the same time, the vote-counters have come from that constitutional conservative program, the candidates are from there, the judges hearing contested election cases are from there, the dominant media is from there, teachers in the majority of K-12 education are from there, and so on.

    In short, we all need to put this ahead of our jobs and material comfort–just as the Founders did.

    If the present course continues unabated, in short order we will be put in front of a wall and shot–first ‘virtually/socially’; then financially; and eventually physically.

    I do not wish for violence. But after the summer of 2020, we all need to realize that if we are to avoid violence, we need a scale/scope of sustained commitment that anyone born after WWII has not seen (no offense to the many who’ve sacrificed in our various wars since–but I’m talking about a scale that dwarfs the number who were involved in post-WWII conflicts).

    Or maybe I’m over-reacting. Open to feedback/criticism, as always.

  4. “As I see it, the only way to peacefully enact change is to take a VERY long view (for the US)–at least two generations. There has to be an organic-growing-to-massive-scale initiative, funded by conservative billionaires and grass roots, to sow the seeds of the philosophies of the Founders and other ‘great minds’ (Sowell, Hayek, etc.).”

    You’re about two generations too late as far as I can tell.

    1. For the current period, yes; definitely too late.
      The current model is effed in the extreme–so yes, I agree.

      I’m thinking about how to change it going forward. We’re 2 laps behind in a 4 lap race.

      I don’t want to resort to violence; hence my thinking of internal gradual revolution.

      That said, my forefathers unleashed Hell on the Brits in upstate NY in the late 1700’s, and it would be disrespectful to not honor their legacy.

  5. I have a PhD in information systems and teach at a state STEM university (second/third career) so I am surrounded by “intellectuals”. No you do not what an intellectual running things, they can’t run their own research and courses that well. Wilson, had a PhD and surrounded himself with intellectuals, we know how well that turned out. FDR went even further with socialist leaning intellectuals (but I repeat myself) and we know how well that turned out. They almost eff up our war effort. Intellectuals never can run things they just think so and are so god awful wrong it is pathetic. Trump knows how to run things, to get things done, that is what we need.

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