16 thoughts on “News/Politics 5-6-17

  1. This is how I see the Democratic party right now. And it’s also why I think they are not going to make a comeback anytime soon….unless cooler and wiser heads prevail…if there are any left in the party to prevail….:–/

    In December 1964, a Silver Age of American liberalism, to rival the Golden Age of FDR and the New Deal, seemed to be upon us.

    Barry Goldwater had been crushed in a 44-state landslide and the GOP reduced to half the size of the Democratic Party, with but 140 seats in the House and 32 in the Senate.

    The Supreme Court of Chief Justice Earl Warren, the most liberal in history, was on a roll, and LBJ was virtually unopposed as he went about ramming his Great Society through Congress.

    The left had it all. But then they blew it, beginning at Berkeley.

    Protests, sit-ins, the holding of cops hostage in patrol cars—went on for weeks to force the University of California, Berkeley, to grant “free speech,” and then “filthy speech” rights everywhere on campus.

    Students postured as revolutionaries at the barricades, and the Academic Senate, consisting of all tenured faculty, voted 824–115 to support all Free Speech Movement demands, while cravenly declining to vote to condemn the tactics used.

    Middle America saw the students differently—as overprivileged children engaged in a tantrum at the most prestigious school in the finest university system in the freest nation on earth.


    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is another interesting take on Trump’s lean toward Andrew Jackson….and why the GOP should be wary of embracing Jackson over Lincoln.

    The Jacksonian tradition in America has, until recently, been neglected, and Trump is firmly within it. If it deserves to be part of the tapestry of the Republican coalition, the GOP should nonetheless curb its enthusiasm. It already has a perfectly acceptable — nay, altogether superior — 19th-century champion in Abraham Lincoln.

    Not only was Lincoln a founding figure in the party and on the right side of slavery, he is an unsurpassed exemplar of the GOP’s core values of personal responsibility and striving.

    Jackson, for all his flaws, belongs in the American pantheon. Trump’s comment the other day about Jackson perhaps preventing the Civil War occasioned much obloquy, but he was right about his stalwart unionism.

    The Jacksonian tradition in America has, until recently, been neglected, and Trump is firmly within it.

    In the midst of the nullification crisis with South Carolina in the 1830s, Jackson told a South Carolina congressman that “if one drop of blood be shed there in defiance of the laws of the United States, I will hang the first man of them I can get my hands on to the first tree I can find.”

    There’s a reason Lincoln reviewed Jackson’s proclamation against nullification when composing his first inaugural address.

    There are other similarities. In a speech praising Jackson back in March at the Hermitage, Trump talked of Jackson’s rise from backwoods obscurity; Lincoln traced the same path. Trump noted Jackson’s regard for common workers; Lincoln felt the same way. Trump celebrated how Jackson challenged the powerful; Lincoln targeted the Southern planter class.

    So, why wasn’t Lincoln himself a Jacksonian? This would have been the easy choice, given how Jacksonian Democrats dominated the areas where Lincoln made his first forays into elected politics. He instead became a Whig — and then a Republican — largely as a cultural choice.

    The Whigs disdained Jackson as representing “the passions.” He was a slave owner, gambler and duelist, and therefore, according to the Whigs, lacked the cardinal virtue of self-control. The Whigs believed deeply in self-discipline, lawfulness and reason.

    And this is the rub. This Whig ethic passed into the DNA of the Republican Party, but risks getting lost in a newly Jacksonian GOP.


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  3. It is interesting to think what Jackson would have done to Trump if Trump had treated Jackson’s wife as he treated Heidi Cruz.

    Jackson was an Indian Fighter and a friend and mentor to Sam Houston. Therefore, Texans are taught to revere Jackson.

    However, Robert E. Lee viewed Jackson and his supporters (including Lee’s disgraced half brother) as trash. The Southern elite saw the election of Jackson as the beginning of the decline which started when we gave the vote to white men who were not property owners.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. The Trail of Tears is a big deal around here. One of the trail heads for roundup is nearby. I have also seen where it is said to have ended in a Cherokee reservation in OK.


  5. The Trail was not much on my radar until 10 yrs ago. I was driving a back road on the way to a funeral, when I llooked up and saw the highway marker designating the road as part of the Trail.


  6. Seeing the Trail marker when and where I did fused those events together in my mind. Now I can not see the markers without feeling the grief of mothers and fathers who have lost sons and daughters prematurely, and whole communities bereft of their elders taken from them before their time.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. An unusual voice of reason on healthcare:


    However, the author and Ryan are Don Quixotes.

    Americans love socialized medicine. From folks around here who resist reforms to Medicare and think Ryan was too hard on those with pre-existing conditions to imbeciles who bellow praises for Australian socialized medicine, Americans want government to pay for their healthcare.

    We are heading for a single payer government system with no “profit”. Just remember we already have that: They are called VA Hospitals.


  8. Ricky, I admit I don’t understand the details of the insurance debate; I don’t really follow it. But what is all the protest against covering people with pre-existing conditions in some way? (I admit I’m not in favor of people refusing to buy insurance until they’re diagnosed with cancer, and then getting coverage that day and having it cover everything. That’s like the people in rural communities who refuse to buy fire insurance, and when they have a fire and the fire department shows up at their house only to make sure the fire doesn’t spread, they curse them out for not being allowed to buy insurance on the spot.) Nevertheless, if people who develop cancer are allowed to be dropped from their insurance because suddenly they’re too expensive to treat, then what they have isn’t really insurance at all. And I’m extremely sympathetic with the person who is diagnosed with something young and can forever after not change jobs or move or whatever because no new company will accept them and their insurance is good only in their current state–one more factor that hinders people’s willingness to pick up and move, by the way.

    There has to be some way to deal with the gamble a healthy 25-year-old makes not to buy insurance that will take 30% of a small paycheck, but not taking that insurance risks being forever uninsurable. My hunch is that the answer, years ago, would have been emphasizing high-deductible catastrophic insurance, not bells-and-whistles insurance, and the healthy 25-year-old faces such a low deductible for that insurance that it’s affordable and worth buying. But that ship has long since sailed; the insurance industry is a nightmare, and I don’t know of anything that can fix it without pain now.

    But I don’t think that allowing insurance agencies to invent new excuses to drop anyone who is actually sick is a very good answer.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Cheryl, The question is not whether those with pre-existing conditions should obtain insurance. The question is whether insurance companies should be allowed to charge more to such folks. By the way, I have a big pre-existing condition and would pay much higher premiums under a free market approach. In my opinion, that is what should happen.

    Michelle, the C section stats are an example of everything that is wrong with our overpriced, semi-socialized system. Many of the C Sections are for the convenience of the patient or the doc. I personally know of a huge number of these. That is one reason we pay 20% of GDP for healthcare and Singapore pays 5%. In Singapore the patients always pay for a portion of their care. C Section women aren’t treated as having a pre-existing condition because Paul Ryan is a big meanie. The C Section impacts the long term health expenses of the mother. So why are we overusing the technique? Because patients have no financial disincentive not to.


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