Tuesday, June 18, 2019

War as a Political Temptation of Trump

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

The media attention on Middle East violence had the effect of goading President Trump to send American soldiers to the region. But he should resist this temptation to become the world’s policeman.

The U.S. must not be drawn into another conflict in the Persian Gulf – regardless of any overhyped provocation. President Reagan stood patiently by as Iraq and Iran had an all-out war against each other from 1980 to 1988.
These conflicts halfway around the globe are never-ending. Henry Kissinger famously said about the war between Iraq and Iran, “It’s a pity they both can’t lose.”

We should protect our own soldiers by standing aside while Saudi Arabia and Iran fight each other, if they wish. We have been staying out of an ongoing conflict in Yemen, and we should continue that successful approach.

Thanks to tremendous American inventiveness, capital investment, risk taking, and a lot of hard work, the U.S. has achieved virtual energy independence. We do not need Persian Gulf oil anymore.

If European countries and Japan depend on oil tankers passing through the Strait of Hormuz, let those nations police that dangerous waterway. They are wealthy nations which can defend their own interests against Iran.

The pressure on Trump to support a sharp increase in the federal gas tax could be compared to the first temptation of Christ, when Satan challenged Jesus to turn stones into bread. Trump has properly resisted that first political temptation, which is a gimmick that would cause long-term harm.

Luring President Trump into a war with Iran is the second temptation. It is akin to Satan challenging Jesus to jump off a lofty temple, and rely on angels to bear him up.

In other words, a leap of faith. A leap into the unknown.

Fifty years ago, the U.S. government launched a rocket carrying three men to the moon and returned them safely to the earth. That was not a leap of faith; it was precisely calculated by natural laws which guaranteed a predetermined successful outcome.

War is not rocket science. Its consequences, political and otherwise, are not predictable.

A military maxim observes that no battle plan survives the first contact with the enemy. Every war has unpredictable consequences.

World War II, which we recently honored on the 75th anniversary of D-Day, entailed enormous losses in American lives as commemorated every Memorial Day. The invasion that General Eisenhower defined as a Great Crusade for “the elimination of Nazi tyranny over the oppressed peoples of Europe” resulted in 45 years of Soviet tyranny over the oppressed peoples behind the Iron Curtain.

Winston Churchill, heralded in England for standing strong and prevailing for freedom, became a hero of the war. But then he lost his next election in a landslide.

Yes, we have grievances with the revolutionary government of Iran. As we have with many other countries in the world, from Mexico to China.

Illegal aliens are pouring over our southern border, enticed by free medical care which California just enacted for them and by drivers licenses which New York State just gave them. These problems deserve President Trump’s undivided attention.

On November 4, 1979, Iran seized 52 American hostages and held them for 444 days until January 20, 1981. That was an act of war under international law, but the Reagan administration wisely chose not to go to war over it.

As a presidential candidate, Donald Trump strongly condemned the nuclear deal with Iran that John Kerry negotiated and Barack Obama implemented without the advice and consent of the U.S. Senate. As president, Trump has continued to criticize the deal, officially known as the JCPOA, and has refused to certify Iran’s compliance with it.

Trump justifiably complains about how the Obama administration allowed $1.7 billion dollars in actual cash to be flown to Iran on a cargo plane, supposedly to settle a debt that had been pending since the Shah was overthrown in 1979. But that money is gone now, and there’s nothing Trump can do to get it back.

Running for president in 2015 and 2016, Donald Trump excoriated previous Republican presidents for intervening in the Middle East. He has called the decision to invade Iraq “the single worst decision ever made.”

Some Republicans were unsettled by Trump’s scathing remarks about George Bush and John McCain, but most came around to support the man who promised to “drain the swamp” in Washington. Now the swamp, also known as the Deep State, is making a determined effort to tempt Trump into fighting a new world war against Iran.

For his final temptation, Satan took Jesus to the mountaintop and promised the whole world if Jesus would bow down and worship him.

President Trump should heed Jesus’ terse response: “Get thee behind me, Satan!”

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.

Saturday, June 15, 2019

A criticism of conservatism

From the Vox Day blog:
James Guiran explains why nationalism is necessary at Jacobite:

Establishment conservatism, it seems, is doubling down on its refusal to reckon with the realities of the American political landscape. It’s true that the ascendant left wants to revoke religious liberty, with the goal of subordinating Christianity (specifically Christianity) to the whims of the woke state; but this is only one facet of its platform. It also promotes a view of white Americans reminiscent of the ethnic hatred stoked against market-dominant minorities in certain countries in the 20th century (never mind that white Americans aren’t even the richest demographic!); claims that our country is fundamentally illegitimate; calls for the destruction of our borders; pushes for a credentialist economy in which no one can succeed without first obtaining permission from a committee of progressive priests, who will dispense it based more on loyalty to the cause than on any apolitical notion of merit; advocates for the abolition of the nation-state in favor of a tightly controlled and managed ‘inclusive society’ in which the inevitable ethnic conflict will provide the ruling structure with a bottomless well of opportunities to justify its own expansion; and seeks to subordinate everything, from colleges to corporations to open-source software organizations to knitting groups, to an arbitrary and intentionally byzantine code of conduct, in order to purge infidels from the whole of society. This is not ‘libertine,’ it is totalitarian. And the totality of that agenda must be opposed.

The conservative debate thus far has been premised on the idea that the proper response to Trump, the proper way forward, is to simply revitalize the platform of the Moral Majority. Not only does this fail to address many of the problems facing our country today ⁠— it has little, if anything, to say about immigration, which is necessarily the most pressing issue because its effects are permanent and irreversible  —  it offers little potential for attaining true hegemony.

If, at this juncture, you are still describing yourself as a "conservative" instead of a "nationalist", you are completely failing to grasp the nature of the cultural conflict. Conservatism can no more save America than Churchianity can save your soul.

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Democrats Already Sick of Their Own Candidates

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

Polling data from Iowa, where the first presidential nomination ballots will be cast next February, show a Democratic Party wishing that some of their candidates would drop out of the race. There has not even been a single presidential debate, yet CNN reports that grassroots Democrats already want fewer contestants.

Nearly 80% of the likely Democratic caucus voters in Iowa indicated their displeasure, in a poll by the Des Moines Register and CNN, at the large number of choices among candidates. But perhaps the real dismay is at who some of those candidates are.

Bill de Blasio, mayor of New York City, is one of the two-dozen candidates for the Democratic nomination for president. He scored a perfect “0” percent support for president in this poll of likely Democratic caucus voters.

De Blasio’s supporters for president, if he had any, might say that Iowa is a long way from his liberal base in New York City. But even in New York State, where Democrats vastly outnumber Republicans, de Blasio’s 29% approval rating is lower than that of Republican President Donald Trump.

It’s a mystery why the ultra-liberal de Blasio is running for president despite having such low approval ratings in his heavily Democratic home state. Billionaire Mike Bloomberg, a more popular mayor of New York City who could have broken all spending records to finance a run for president, decided against it for himself.

More than 75% of the candidates – 19 out of 24 – for the Democratic nomination have 2% or less support among likely Iowa caucus voters, which makes their bids exceedingly implausible. History shows that only candidates who fare well in Iowa, by placing in the top three or nearly so, have a viable chance to win the nomination.

Undeterred, 19 contenders gathered in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, on Sunday to pitch their candidacy to Iowa Democrats. Joe Biden, the frontrunner who has seen his lead dwindle amid his flip-flop on abortion and other missteps, skipped the event perhaps to avoid unfavorable comparisons with his younger, more energetic rivals.

Most of the Democratic candidates have angered the liberal base by avoiding the absurd demands for impeachment of Trump. Among the leading candidates, only Senator Elizabeth Warren has called for the impeachment of Trump, which may have boosted her poll numbers with the Leftist voters who want, more than anything else, to remove Trump from office.

But some Iowa Democrats are just fine with Republican President Trump, who returns to Council Bluffs where he held a 10,000-attendee rally before the midterm elections last year. Trump supporters then filled the entire Mid-America Center, which holds 8,000, and thousands more stood in the aisles and in the parking lot outside where they could watch on a huge television screen.

Many even camped out overnight beforehand just to have the chance to see Trump in action. And he did not disappoint as he galvanized the massive crowd with his speech.

“The Democrats have become too extreme, and they’ve become, frankly, too dangerous to govern,” he declared. “They’ve gone wacko.”

The impeachment talk proves Trump’s point, and even House Speaker Nancy Pelosi does not want to go there. She fears, and she should, a backlash by voters in the next election if the House Democrats do something so unfair to the president.

In his speech to Iowans last October, Trump promised to loosen regulations against adding ethanol to gasoline, and he has delivered on this promise just like all his others. He has approved year-round sales of gasoline having higher levels of ethanol than currently allowed, which boosts corn farmers.

In what may become a pattern in many regions of the country where Trump continues to have immense popularity, even a Democratic congresswoman sought to meet and welcome Trump’s visit to her district in Southwest Iowa. Congresswoman Cindy Axne (D-IA) announced that she wanted to be with Trump for his visit on Tuesday, which included Trump’s tour of an ethanol plant.

Energy is a winning issue for Trump, as American oil production has increased and prices have generally fallen. Despite the tensions with Iran, crude oil prices have fallen by more than 20% since April, which should yield lower gasoline prices for family vacationers this summer.

The CNN poll of Iowans had more bad news for Democrats. A majority of likely caucus voters in that party insist that a candidate must support abortion, think climate change is the greatest threat to humanity, and ban assault-style weapons despite the Second Amendment.

All of these positions are on the losing side in a general presidential election, as Trump’s victory over Hillary Clinton demonstrated last time. Perhaps that is why a solid majority of Americans, in another recent poll by CNN, expect Trump to win reelection.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Brits Should Listen to Trump and John Cleese

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

President Donald Trump’s visit to royal England is captivating the British as much as Americans, as Queen Elizabeth extends official state honors to him and his family. This is only the third time during her 67-year reign that Queen Elizabeth has welcomed an American president with such honors.

More than 150 participated in the royal feast with the Queen and the American president on Monday night. Despite all the overheated rhetoric against Trump, very few dignitaries declined to attend this fete epitomizing the Anglo-American tradition.

Dinner guests were seated precisely 18 inches from each other, and the royal family was adorned with their finest jewelry. Princess Diana’s son Harry, caught in an awkward spot between his anti-Trump American wife Meghan and the British tradition of cordiality, participated earlier that day.

The underlying politics marks a turning point for Great Britain, which is in the throes of division about its future. A majority want independence, as reflected by their vote in 2016 for Britain to exit Europe (“Brexit”), while a vocal minority want to be citizens of Europe.

This conflict is on display as one of Britain’s most famous entertainers of the last half-century, the Monty Python comedian John Cleese, criticized the loss in English identity. He tweeted last week that “some years ago I opined that London was not really an English city any more.”

Cleese continued, “Since then, virtually all my friends from abroad have confirmed my observation. So there must be some truth in it.”

For that, the internet erupted among those who demand political correctness, falsely accusing Cleese of being racist. But Cleese stood his ground, observing that “it’s legitimate to prefer one culture to another.”

Cleese is an icon of British humor, perhaps best known for his Monty Python skit “The Ministry of Silly Walks.” In it he portrays a government worker in charge of approving grants to develop silly walks, and Cleese’s own hilarious way of walking to his job caused fans to urge him to reprise his silly walk throughout his career.

But his criticism of the wrong turn taken by London is not silly at all, and is proven by many statistics. For example, last year the murder rate in London increased to its highest level this decade, often by gruesome stabbings and including at least one shocking murder by machete.

Cleese, though not known to be generally conservative, explained what London has become. “I suspect I should apologise for my affection for the Englishness of my upbringing, but in some ways I found it calmer, more polite, more humorous, less tabloid, and less money-oriented than the one that is replacing it.”

The anti-Trump mayor of London who skipped the gala for Trump at Buckingham Palace, Sadiq Khan, predictably criticized Cleese’s comments. “Londoners know that our diversity is our greatest strength. We are proudly the English capital, a European city and a global hub.”

But the London Mayor Khan went further in his personal attacks on Trump on the eve of his visit at the invitation of the Queen. Khan’s harsh rhetoric seemed contrary to the British tradition of genteel hospitality.

Mayor Khan published a strident newspaper article two days before Trump arrived, under the headline “It’s un-British to roll out the red carpet for Donald Trump.” Khan even insisted that Trump somehow “flies in the face of the ideals America was founded upon.”

Not content with those attacks on our American President, London Mayor Khan next did a video in which he insisted that Trump’s policies would somehow make women second-class citizens. Khan apparently supports legalized abortion, and asserted that Trump would cause women to have back-alley abortions.

Confronted with these potshots by the unleashed London mayor, Trump returned the favor by tweeting against Khan as Trump arrived in England. Trump compared Khan to the disastrous mayor of New York City, Bill de Blasio, and a greater insult is difficult to imagine.

Trump invites Britain to complete its exit from Europe without cutting any deals with the mainland, and instead look for future trade agreements with its longest ally, the United States. Trump-supporting Boris Johnson, who is the presumptive replacement of Theresa May as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, agrees with Trump that a “no deal Brexit” is the best approach.

“We will leave the [European Union] on 31 October, deal or no deal,” Johnson has declared. “The way to get a good deal is to prepare for a no deal.”

Europe’s loss can be America’s gain. A Great Britain under the conservative, Trump-like leadership of Boris Johnson can help revive that country and enable them to afford more of their share for military defense.
Trump properly embraces English culture rather than apologizing for it. So should British royalty and all of England.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on pseagles.com.