Donald Trump in 2016 did not only run against the planted rumors of the fake Steele dossier, 90 percent negative media coverage, his own boisterous past, and the “Access Hollywood” tape. He also was campaigning against Hillary Clinton—and the nation’s quarter-century weariness with the Clinton scandals, crimes, money-grubbing, and hypocrisies.
For a quarter of the country, independents especially, a vote for Trump was not a referendum on a Democrat or Republican, or even love or hate for Donald Trump, but rather reflected a “Never Hillary” desire to be done with the very name Clinton.
So, too, in 2020 Trump will not be running only on his own record, or even his person but also against a living and breathing alternative candidate, one that both offers a precise antithetical agenda and displays a concrete personage.
Considering all of that, during the last week, Trump has been given great gifts in a way no one might have imaged just a month ago.
Discrimination by sex and by race are ancient innate pathologies and transcend particular cultures. But the American idea of sexismand racism in the 21st century — unfailing, endemic, and institutional discrimination by a majority-white-male-privileged culture against both women and so-called non-white minorities — has largely become a leftist construct.
We can see how these two relativist -isms work in a variety of ways.
What has gone wrong with the U.S. government in the past month? Just about everything, from the fundamental to the ridiculous.
Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu visited the United States to warn Congress about the dangers of a nuclear Iran. He spoke without the invitation of an irritated President Obama, who claimed that he did not even watch the address on television.
Hillary Clinton will not run in 2016 on the slogan of continuing the hope-and-change policies of Barack Obama. The president has not enjoyed a 50 percent approval rating since a brief period after his reelection. And he is no friend of the Clintons.
Abroad, chaos in the Middle East, failed reset with Russia, leading from behind in Libya, and the deaths in Benghazi are no more winning issues than are, at home, the Obamacare fiasco, $9 trillion in new debt, and the alphabet soup of the AP, IRS, NSA, and VA scandals.
Almost everything the administration has alleged about Benghazi has proven false. Yet also, in Machiavellian fashion, the Obama group successfully peddled useful fictions, effectively deluded the country, adroitly ensured President Obama’s reelection, and cast aspersions on those who sought the truth.
In that sense, so far, the lies about Benghazi have won, the truth has failed.
So what really happened?
The Obama administration felt that it was behind the curve concerning the 2011 unrest in Libya. The so-called Arab Spring revolutions had toppled other governments in North Africa, and it seemed that protesters would do the same in Syria and Libya.
All presidents at one time have fudged on the truth. Most politicians pad their resumes and airbrush away their sins. But what is new about political lying is the present notion that lies are not necessarily lies anymore — a reflection of the relativism that infects our entire culture.
Postmodernism (the cultural fad “after modernism”) went well beyond questioning norms and rules. It attacked the very idea of having any rules at all. Postmodernist relativists claimed that things like “truth” were mere fictions to preserve elite privilege. Unfortunately, bad ideas like that have a habit of poisoning an entire society — and now they have.
Texas gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis was recently caught fabricating her own autobiography. She exaggerated her earlier ordeals, lied about the age at which she divorced and was untruthful about how she paid for her Harvard Law School education. Continue reading “The Poison of Postmodern Lying”→
Tuesday night President Obama will deliver another campaign speech, this one marketed as the State of the Union address. As such, we can expect to hear, through the usual white noise of “I,” “me,” and “my,” vacuous bromides like “moving America forward,” and empty promises “to grow the economy, strengthen the middle class, and empower all who hope to join it,” as White House flack Dan Pfeiffer said. So after token references to economic growth, we can expect to be served heaping helpings of “income inequality” and “economic mobility,” the redistributionist chum for his hungry progressive base. Continue reading “Fight the Next War, Not the Last One”→
Hillary Clinton is no doubt a talented speaker. She recently went into what the left wing sees as the heart of darkness of the American 1 percent at Goldman Sachs, purportedly gave two brief chats, and walked away with a reported $400,000 in fees. Such compensation is almost as profitable as Hillary’s long-ago cattle-future trading, in which as a talented rookie speculator she beat one-in-several-million odds by parlaying an original $1,000 investment into a $100,000 profit.
That Goldman’s shenanigans were central to the 2008 housing and financial meltdown — and were empowered, in part, by Bill Clinton’s own prior twofer of deregulating Wall Street and appointing to Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae greedy, though liberal, incompetents of the likes of James Johnson, Franklin Raines, and Jamie Gorelick — apparently meant nothing to Hillary.
Her current frenetic speaking career is consistent with the ethics that allowed Anthony Weiner’s wife, Huma Abedin, to freelance as a six-figure private “consultant” while simultaneously working as Hillary’s aide and representing the U.S. State Department. With the Clintons, government service is never quite inseparable from private lucre. The more public anguish is voiced over fairness, and the more loudly the undue influence of big money over big government is criticized, the more both are drawn to just that. The Clintons must think of Wall Street the way the Reverend Jimmy Swaggart used to talk of “the Devil” — a dark force that nonetheless always alights on their shoulders, improperly but successfully seducing them. Continue reading “Hillary’s Odyssey”→