Checkout the List

Here is a list I published in my blog in March 2015 of what I thought a new president should work on. Look down the list and see how well President Trump has done so far.

  • REDUCE THE SIZE AND SCOPE OF GOVERNMENT;
  • ENCOURAGE THE PRIVATE SECTOR TO GROW AND CREATE EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES;
  • BUILD THE PIPELINE;
  • REDO THE TAX CODE;
  • RE-ESTABLISH OUR FORMER MILITARY POWER, INCLUDING NATO;
  • RECOGNIZE IRAN AND PUTIN AS BEING REAL THREATS TO WORLD PEACE;
  • CONDUCT A REAL WAR ON ISLAMIC RADICAL JIHADISTS;
  • STAND WITH OUR SUNNI ARAB ALLIES, KURDS, AND ISRAEL IN THE MIDDLE EAST;
  • CANCEL MOST OF OBAMA’S EXECUTIVE ORDERS AND AGENCY-ISSUED REGULATIONS;
  • REPLACE MOST OF OBAMACARE WITH A PRIVATE SECTOR PATIENT/DOCTOR PLAN;
  • ACHIEVE A BALANCED BUDGET PROCESS IN FOUR YEARS;
  • BUILD BACK CITIZENS’ TRUST IN GOVERNMENT;
  • SPEAK THE TRUTH TO THE PEOPLE;
  • TAKE CARE OF OUR VETERANS; AND
  • NEVER USE THE FOLLOWING WORDS OR PHRASES: FAIR SHARE, SAVE THE MIDDLE CLASS, LEVEL THE PLAYING FIELD, A NATION OF COWARDS ABOUT RACE, TRANSFORM AMERICA, EVERYONE PAYING A FAIR SHARE, CARBON TAX, WORKPLACE VIOLENCE, WAR ON COAL, DANGERS OF CLIMATE CHANGE, LEAD FROM BEHIND, DEPEND ON THE U.N., WAR ON WOMEN, AND I DID, MY ADMINISTRATION, I HAVE A PEN AND PHONE.

I think he has done rather well.

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Professor and The Nunes Memo

 A  fictional discourse between a political science Professor and his students.

The Professor greeted his Seminar students and said, “You all are doing well.
Some of you need to work on your personal confidence factor. The people you will be working for will be constantly assessing you. You will be playing in the biggest game of all.

“For example, right now this Nation is involved in a great crisis. Yes, I’m speaking about the Nunes Document and the various reactions to it. You all know that I worked in the Reagan White House the last two years of his second term. I had several routine duties. One that took very little time and was always approved, was the Intelligence Community requests to the FISC, The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. They were all relatively brief, clearly written and highly classified. They had to be handled quickly due to the nature of the collection target.

“There was great trust between the Court and the intelligence collectors. I never saw or even suspicioned that any deception was involved. All the FISC requests that came through the Reagan White House were approved quickly by the a FISC judge. None were controversial. The Judges, then and now, would have been astounded and outraged by the process exposed by Rep. Nunes.

“The Rule of Law is, perhaps, the single most important pillar of  American Democracy. Using evidence provided by sources paid for by the Clinton Campaign, the Democratic National Committee and rogue elements of the FBI and Department of Justice to secure a warrant to surveil American citizens who happen to represent an opposing political party presents a very serious crisis to our entire legal system. The elements of the Intelligence Community, the Justice Department and the FBI who knowingly participated in this illegal process must be held accountable through the Grand Jury process and a Special Counsel who was not part of this illegal process or a confident of those who did.

“The current Special Counsel, Robert Mueller’s highly partisan investigation must be ended or put on hold until the men and women of the FBI and Justice Department who were knowingly involved in this illegal activity are, at least, removed from office and put on administrative leave. Mueller has found absolutely no evidence of collusion which is not a crime. His now illegal search for “obstruction of justice” actions on the part of the President are nothing short of a continuation of the discredited FISC warrant. I believe Mr. Mueller’s activities under this illegal warrant should be one of the subjects for investigation by a legitimate appointed authority. As part of the clean up process, Attorney-General Sessions and several others should be given a chance to step down or be fired. Compared to the activities laid out in the Nunes memo, Watergate looks like a minor event that received appropriate responses.”

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The Professor and The NFL

A  fictional discourse between a political science Professor and his students.

As soon as the Professor took his place at the head of the table, Robert said, “With everything going on why is so much coverage and attention being given to the NFL players taking a knee during the pre-game national anthem? Is it really that important?”

The professor looked down the table at the ten students in his political science honors seminar and asked, “How many of you think the issue Robert raised is important enough for us to devote class time to discussing it?”

Four of the ten students raised their hand. “Alice, your hand was up. Why is this issue important?”

“I think the behavior of the NFL players who take a knee are disrespecting sacred parts of our heritage and national culture. How we respond will say a lot about how we feel about our national history and beliefs. What does being an American mean?”

“Anyone else care to comment? Edward said, “This is simply a case of Americans exercising their Constitutional rights to protest parts of our history and culture that they believe need to be discussed and changed.”

“Okay. You are interested and so am I. As you have learned it is important to understand not only the issue but to have some understanding of the biases, agenda and experiences of the speaker. I may be an open book to those who have taken a previous course from me of read some of my publications. But for the rest of you, I am a Korean War Vet from the coal mining and steel mills of western Pennsylvania; studied at Pitt, Duke and other places here and abroad in the fields of politics and national security; briefly participated in the civil rights sit in movement in North Caroline and met Martin Luther King in the process; served 21 years in the CIA with several foreign assignments including two years in Vietnam and Moscow; my last government job was as a special assistant to President Reagan for national security affairs. Politically I’m a Republican with strong leanings toward populism and nationalism. With that background it must be clear that I am not a liberal.

“I don’t believe the Government should punish people for disrespecting the flag or the national anthem and the thousands of veterans whose sacrifices made it possible for them to have the right to protest. But I have no respect for those who do, especially when they are men being highly paid to play a game. They are incredible athletes, but first and foremost they are entertainers working for people who make fortunes from ticket sales, TV rights, NFL apparel  stores and stadiums paid for by tax payers.  I don’t even think they all know what they are protesting.

“This is no place for government intervention. It is up to the owners and the fans. I am no longer a fan. I no longer watch the games or talk about them. Weak NFL management, greedy owners and pampered athletes have made their bed and are totally responsible for diminishing viewers and sales.

“Rather than being dismayed by the actions and greed of the NFL, I am heartened by the response of the people where our true strength lies.”

 

 

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The Professor: What is a Socialist?

A  fictional discourse between a political science Professor and his students.

“Who has the next question? Okay, Paul, you’re up.”

“You often refer to Progressives and Socialists. Is there a difference and what is a Socialist?”

“You all know this but I like to start with basics. The agenda or mission of both the Socialist and Progressive Parties is to own and control the ‘means of production.’  In their terms the ‘means of production’ includes all economic activity.  In their very attractive messaging that is what they talk about.  The average person thinks, “What’s so bad about that? I certainly don’t control any big businesses or factories. No one works for me. The big capitalists and bankers on Wall Street control everything now. If the Socialists want to take over it won’t affect my family. Maybe getting the profit at any costs people out of the loop will be a better deal for me. That doesn’t sound dangerous or even a big problem to me.”

“What the people are never told is that to control the entire network of ‘the means of production’ someone has to be in charge. In the case of the Socialist or Progressives, the someone in charge is the elite of the Socialist Party. What was a decentralized economic system subject to market influences and the decisions of thousands of relatively independent owners, managers and financiers is now highly centralized under the control of Socialist managers. These managers removed from close contact with the various production facilities must make decisions that set production goals, distribution of goods and services, research and development areas and budgets, the work place environment, the number and skills of the workers required throughout the production cycle, the cost of goods and export and import requirements.

“From a moral standpoint the socialist managers are no worse or better than the capitalists they replaced. The Socialists claimed they would make things better for the workers and their families. I believe the majority of them really try to improve living standards for the working class. What they soon discover is that a highly centralized system where one segment is integrated with several others requires a strict application of rules. These rules in turn require some form of enforced discipline and that is the problem. People, managers or workers, must obey the rules or the production goals of the 5 and 10 year plans will fail and people will suffer.

“Once you have  centralized management of the ‘means of production’ the required rules and laws to make it work take the choices people made out of their hands. What schools your children can go to, what they study, where they work  and live is determined by the Socialist elite group of managers. The essence of freedom is the ability of individuals to make their own choices, good or bad. When the drive to follow your own choices clashes with the need for the centralized economy to meet its goals, the individual must either accept the rules or be punished. Millions of people were killed in China and Russia for resisting government rules. Socialism does not lead to freedom. It always leads to coercion, totalitarianism  and economic ruin. Socialists and Progressives are the same thing. In America Progressivism sells better than Socialism.

 

 

 

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Professor: The New Era

A  fictional discourse between a political science Professor and his students.

“Good to see you all looking so alert and thank for putting up with the last four weeks of class. I trust my replacements bought fresh perspectives to you. There is so much going on between the Trump forces and those who absolutely hate him. I’ve never seen the like of these times, even in the worst of Nixon and Watergate. So, I just had to go to Washington and check with my old contacts to see what is happening. Rather than the almost impossible task of briefing you on what I learned, or think I learned, let’s do a question and answer format.

“Who would like to start?” Hands shot up and the Professor nodded at Alison who said, “Democracy by its nature is naturally messy but why is it so difficult for the Republican Congress to pass legislation?”

“Right to the heart of things. Good question. First the ideological struggle between Republicans and Democrats must cross a much wider gap. Both parties have undergone radical change in the last few years and neither one seems to recognize the extent of the change. The Democratic change occurred first and is now firmly entrenched. The old party with its ability to work with the opposition is gone. The Progressives have taken over and moved the ideological base of the party far to the left. Just look at the people who are now party leaders:  Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Chuck Schumer, Nancy Pelosi, and a host of other governors and members of Congress. This move has cost them hundreds of political positions in the federal, state and local governments. It will take time to move their base to the new socialist ideology. During this period, they cannot govern, but they can obstruct and are doing that very well with their get rid of President Trump at any cost using any means that work. Don’t miss the Saul Alinsky message in their tactics.

“The Republican party has also changed, perhaps even more dramatically. The move of their base, with the leadership and appeal of President Trump, to a populist nationalist party, is being fought very hard by the entrenched Republican establishment. They are, I believe more effective in stopping the Trump Program than the Democrats. Neither party seems to recognize the playing field has shifted as they are still playing the old game and wondering why it doesn’t work.

“At stake is the allegiance and well-being of millions of Americans. Slightly more than half of the popular vote was won by the progressive candidate. That should give any Republican pause and get them working to forward the Trump program.

“The appeal of the Sanders’ program is typical of the success of the appeal of socialism to an un-informed segment of the population that doesn’t understand the world- wide failure of Socialism. Cuba and Venezuela are recent and nearby examples of the failure and ugliness of the social cost on the lives of millions of people.

“The short answer to Alison’s question is that the ideological gap in American society is now wider than at any time since the Civil War. This is no time for observing the action while straddling an ideological fence. There will be no reaching across the aisle to get things done unless the Republicans get rid of their do nothing Congressional leaders, go to simple majority votes in the Senate, shut down the insane look for collusion between the Trump campaign/ administration and get some responsive leadership in the Department of Justice. I hope the 2018 elections will weed out the Republicans who continue to obstruct the governing process. My recent time in Washington has convinced me that this is the time to stand up and be counted.”

 

 

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The Professor: The Senator Sessions Problem

A fictional discourse between a learned political science professor and his students.

“I know you are all very busy, but I want to get some of my critical thoughts out to you before we meet in the classroom. Also, I want to put them in writing before I forget them or they are overtaken by fast-moving events.

“You have heard me say I think the ‘rule of law’ is critical to the success of democratic governments. The current appointment of a Special Consul troubles me, for no crime has been identified. Congressional committees are investigating unsourced allegations that people associated with the Trump campaign colluded with the Russians. That is strange, for collusion is not a crime and does not appear in our legal code as a crime. What does that leave?

“In recent history, the Special or Independent Consuls were appointed to investigate a crime and that is what they did. Not necessarily the crime that led to their appointment, but one they found in their free-range probing. With the resources and time available to these extra-legal consuls, they were able to find some illegal activity to prosecute, even if the illegal activity was an untruth uttered under oath. Some might think the Special Consul created the crime in the process of their investigations. But, at least, in those cases they were investigating a crime.

“With no crime or even evidence of a possible crime, the Special Consul will begin by investigating people until a crime is found. A very strange process for a democracy that prides itself on adherence to the ‘rule of law.’

“Only dictatorships of the left or right investigate people to search for a crime. Through coercive interrogations, the Stalinists, Nazi and religious inquisitors always found or constructed a crime and severely punished the culprits. Mr. Mueller and his rapidly expanding staff are doing what? Since they have no crime yet, they are investigating people in search of crime that they will eventually construct so they can prosecute the people who are suspected of participating in some imaginary collusion with the Russians or some barely related activity. Shades of the Stalin Government.

“If Senator Sessions had not so unwisely recused himself for any matters involving Russian collusion, we would not have a Special Consul and certainly not one like Mr. Mueller, who, if he is so honorable and ethical, would not have taken the anti-democratic task of investigating people to find some prosecutable crime. In addition, a legal reading of the legislation authorizing the selection and appointment of a Special Consul shows Mr. Mueller to be ineligible for the position because of his long-term relationship with Mr. Comey. Apparently that disqualification did not concern the Deputy AG Mr. Rosenstein but surely it would not have been missed by Senator Sessions if he had been doing his job as a full-time Attorney-General.

“Why is President Trump concerned and angry with Senator Sessions and the Department of Justice? Very simple, he sees his family and promises to the American people threatened by the unconstrained freewheeling of a biased Special Consul investigating people looking for a crime they can prosecute and an Attorney-General is not overseeing a police state type of disregard of the American ‘rule of law.’”

 

 

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The Professor: Realities and Challenges in the Trump era

A fictional discourse between a learned political science professor and his students.

In little over a month, I’ll be seeing some of you in my honors seminar. For those of you who have other plans and commitments, I’ll continue to send you my thoughts and analysis of current events.

I believe this next class maybe the most important one I’ve ever taught. There is too much at stake for any American who loves this country to sit on the sidelines. The realities are fundamentally frightening. We have just come thru an extraordinary period of destructive national government policies. I’m not being a pessimist when I say, we cannot survive as free democratic nation unless we can recover from the results of the last ten or so years.

First the realities as I see them. The nation is deeply divided between the people who want the welfare promises of socialism and those who believe there is no individual freedom and prosperity under any form of socialism. In a cradle to grave government, there are very few individual choices. An absence of individual choice defines the absence of freedom. President Obama knowingly presided over a transformation process that would ultimately lead to a socialist government. A process that Hillary Clinton would have continued. Remember they both made no secret of the allegiance they paid to Mr. Saul Alinsky.

It was Mr. Alinsky, a brilliant revolutionary writer, who provided the intellectual under pinning to the Progressive movement, including the name. Mr. Alinsky stressed to his followers that the terms socialism and communism would not attract wide support in America and to use the term progressive instead. He also used the terms ‘leading from behind’ and ‘the issue is never the issue.’ I will cover the political takeover of the center/left Democratic Party by the Progressives. Today the Democratic Party of the American political scene is only a misleading name for the Progressives.

The Progressives do not accept that Donald J. Trump won the national election and is now their president. They are doing, and will do anything to bring down his Presidency before it can establish itself and bring America back. They are supported and, even led, by the national media, our higher educational institutions, and the entertainment world. The deluge of misinformation and lies from our once renown media outlets, is having an effect. Without the Presidents tweets, there would be no other broadly disseminated information source. I believe that is true but am still amazed by the weirdness of that statement.

Even though President Trump won the election and selected his cabinet and other government employees, his own Department of Justice, is at best, not engaged and at worst, actually hostile. How else can you explain the existence of a Special Consul when no crime has been identified and it is staffed and run by those openly opposed to the Trump Administration? How could this happen when the Attorney-General and his deputy were appointed by the President?

In my seminar, we will examine the past policies of President Obama and apply the America First principle to both domestic and international actions. Advanced warning, don’t sign up if you base your arguments on emotional beliefs. Just the facts, please.

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