REAGAN VS TRUMP: WHO WINS?
The much-ballyhooed Hundred Days of President Biden having just passed, this is as good a time as any to reflect on how the next four years might go. Or however long his health holds out. Be forewarned this may not please everyone. Relax. This is not intended to “surprise friends and foes.” I’m not turning into Mitt Romney.
However Biden got the keys to the Oval Office, Trump has no one to blame but himself. Democrats are gloating that Trump was the best motivator for voting they ever had. Perhaps. The first time he ran, he had the advantage of running against arguably the most despised woman of the day. Nurse Wretched turned off all but her most loyal sycophants, and repelled anyone else who might have voted for another candidate to oppose Trump. Against all expectation, he squeaked through.
In 1980, another Republican eked out a victory over a hapless Jimmy Carter. Many voters were ambivalent about Reagan. Was he, as Democrats painted him, unstable and eager to launch nukes against the Communists? He disarmed his most vocal critics during the debates with an avuncular manner. But he was not merely a cue-card-reader with an impeccable sense of timing. Underneath his easy-going demeanor, he knew exactly who the enemies were, and how to go over the talking heads of the alphabet-soup media directly to the ears and heart of Americans.
Four year later, he won in the nation’s biggest landslide of history – losing only Minnesota, his opponent’s home state, and D.C., which may as well be a land-locked nation in the middle of Turdistan.
This clearly demonstrates how one should go about building on success to win over voters who were uneasy at first. Reagan was opposed by a House and a Senate controlled by the Democrats. How did he pull it off?
Let me count the ways:
1. A sense of humor. In the right hands, this is the most potent weapon of all. It has to performed without rancor or drawing blood. Just poke a few holes through the veneer. Thin-skinned people holler the loudest. And that was precisely Trump’s most fatal weakness. He could dish it out, but he couldn’t take it.
2. Letting others take credit. No leader, least of all a president, should let pride get in the way of a job well done. Make no mistake, there were plenty of achievements. He had a lot of help. So did Reagan, and he did it without a Republican majority for most of his two terms. Let that sink in.
3. Don’t take things so personal. Trump was constitutionally incapable of letting slights go unanswered in the most spiteful manner he could muster. Sometimes you just gotta let things go. The kid on the playground who invariably invites the most attention is the one who LETS the others get under his skin. “Well, that’s how Trump is – he gives as good as he gets.” Wonderful strategy. You see how well that paid off.
Fair or not, if it isn’t close, your opponents can’t cheat. – May 12, 2021
IT'S AN AMAZON JUNGLE OUT THERE
You have to run pretty fast to keep up with the hypocrisy lately, particularly since the November elections.
Jeff Bezos, owner of the Amazon behemoth, also owns the Washington Post. Has since 2013. He flipped over a sofa cushion to look for a button that popped off his bespoke suit and found enough money to buy a Kit-Kat bar from the bodega next door, and had enough change left over to buy the newspaper. I mean, the whole company.
Before the recent elections, many people were wary of allowing universal mail-in voting because of the potential for fraud. The Washington Post sniffed that such opposition was “bogus fear mongering.” The newspaper that Jeff Bezos owns. Still with me?
Lately, Amazon employees in Alabama have been militating for unionization. The National Labor Relations Board ruled that 6,000 workers in a Bessemer warehouse would cast ballots over a seven-week period. Sound a lot like early voting?
Not so fast, Amazon shot back. Ballot security can only be guaranteed with in-person voting. Got that?
Don’t get me wrong. Unions have their rightful place in the nation, as long as they make the workplace a safer place, and they ensure the administration follows the law. Does anyone seriously believe that if unions were to disappear altogether, administrators would suddenly see the light and treat all employees with respect?
Well, as Mom used to say, “Sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander.” When Bezos is done talking through both sides of his mouth, he’s gonna need a lot of sauce to go with that fowl, feathers and all. - January 28, 2021
Nuns vs Nones
Biden has tapped Xavier Becerra, presently attorney general of the People’s Republic of California, to head the Department Health and Human Services. If you know nothing else about him, here’s something you SHOULD know: He sued the Little Sisters of the Poor, a group of nuns that cares for the elderly poor.
Why would anyone sue nuns, you ask? Becerra wanted to force them to provide RU 486, also known as abortion pills. Because as everyone knows, an order of nuns desperately needs access to abortifacients.
So, Biden wants someone who actually sued nuns. Here's your
talking point for the next four years. As in, "What do you think of a
president who appoints the guy who sues nuns?" Or, "Biden has some
good ideas, I guess, but did you know he appointed someone who sues nuns?"
Or, "Whoa! I didn't think Biden would say anything like that. But then he
DID appoint a guy who sues nuns."
Try dropping that line in anywhere in a conversation with a Biden supporter. Let the fun begin! - December 17, 2020
Flashback to 1896
Trump’s reelection campaign is stirring to life. A 3:41 video appeared in my FB page (it made past the censors) which features lots of stirring scenery and references to American heroes. Runs a little long for TV spots, though. I suppose he decided to try a lighter touch to appeal to voters for a change instead of shouting with all-caps on Twitter.
Nobody ever solicits my opinion for ads. I can’t imagine why. My rates are low, and I don’t know how to use Twitter so I won’t be blabbing about my clients’ habits or offhand remarks.
Remember when Eagle Scouts were BOOED by the attendees at the 2000 Democratic National Convention? Had I been in charge of advertising, I would have beat them on the head with this clip over and over until the only people left voting for Democrats would be the immediate family of the candidates, and they'd never admit it on camera. This year, I'd run clips of the anarchists tearing down statues of Abraham Lincoln and abolitionists, with voice-overs of the wacky mayors, governors and representatives who made all this possible. The Reagan landslide would seem merciful compared to the results.
I seriously doubt the DNC will be soliciting my opinions, either. But if they do, I’ll congratulate them on borrowing a page from the 1896 McKinley Front Porch strategy. Back then, the GOP candidate, who shared Trump’s affinity for tariffs, sat out the campaign, greeting well-wishers to his home in Canton, Ohio. The best thing the Democrats can do is run a Basement Campaign, except keep Biden out of reach of anyone with a microphone or camera. Or the key to the basement.
You can reach me here on my account. If you’re driving around my neighborhood, look for the house with the Gadsden flag, or the Gonzales “Come and Take It” flag, or the Texas state flag, or the . . . well, there’ll be a flag. But I guarantee it won’t be rainbow-colored. - July 6, 2020
State representative Harold Dutton will face Houston Councilman Jerry Davis in a runoff for district 142. The long-time incumbent is upset that a mystery challenger, Natasha Ruiz, forced the matchup. Dutton, who has never had to face a runoff in 36 years, is so upset that he hired a private eye to find out if this person even exists.
It must be embarrassing to learn that a non-entity can come out of nowhere and take 20 percent of the voters he presumes were his.
Rice professor Mark Jones believes that name recognition helped propel a less well-known candidate for the Railroad Commission, thus Jim Wright defeated Ryan Sitton in the Republican primary. Never mind that the Wright the professor has in mind was a Democrat. Also, according to the Chronicle, Wright beat Sitton, “in almost all the counties that make up industry and conservative strongholds.” On the other hand, name recognition didn’t help yet another Bush running for U.S. representative.
Suck up, buttercup. Maybe your district just doesn’t like you as much as you thought.- March 9, 2020
And Then There Were 17
O’Rourke came within 3 percentage points of defeating Cruz, and mistook losing as a national mandate to lose to more candidates. As if this weren’t enough, he poisoned any other statewide chance as he declared “Hell, yes, we’re coming for your AR-15!” His bold stance promptly put him behind Andrew Yang who’s about to bust out of the one-percent pack with a two-percent support. Yang, you may recall, also gave us this gem: “I’m Asian, so I know a lot of doctors.” Tiger Moms swelled with pride, but the Woke wing of the Democrats don’t have a sense of humor. About anything. – November 2, 2019
STEAKS AND SNOWFLAKES
What goes best with that medium-rare steak – a bottle of St. Arnold Elissa, or a cup of melted snowflakes? - January 28, 2018
|Just like everyone else, only blacker.|
DANCING CHIC TO CHIC
Recent events since the inauguration of Trump reminded me of a lengthy essay by Tom Wolfe – “Radical Chic.” Wolfe captures the essence of the ferment of the late 60s and the liberal guilt trying to atone for all the injustices committed since Cain bumped off his younger brother in a fit of pique that cattle breeders were more acceptable in God’s eyes than vegetable growers, putting an end to the rumor that vegetarians are non-violent.
As everyone knows, streets are filled with protesters because they’re angry that Nurse Ratched didn’t win as pundits had promised. The poised and polished pants suit pol got blindsided by an utter rube with a bank account to rival the foundation account founded by Hillary. They’re angry about a lot of other things, some legitimate, some frivolous.
Whatever the basis of their grievances, they have decided that the best way to get their point across is by dressing in costumes dreamed up by drunken gynecologists at a reunion in New Orleans. Many were also sporting pink knit beanies with two points that look like teats on an old sow.
At Berkeley in California, the home of the “free speech movement,” protesters chased off a Trump spokesman and smashed and vandalized property, set fires in the street and assaulted innocent individuals. Not even Starbucks was spared in the mayhem. They could write a 700-word essay on the concept of irony based on personal experience, assuming they are literate.
Tom Wolfe records the reaction of one wary gentleman at a trendy Manhattan party attended by Black Panthers. His words are worth pondering:
“He’s a magnificent man, but suppose some simple-minded schmucks take all that business about burning down buildings seriously?” - February 19, 2017
Tom Wolfe, author of The Right Stuff, a paean to the Mercury astronauts and test pilots of Edwards Air Base, introduced the colorful phrase “augur in.” An augur is a tool used for boring. No, not reruns of Hee-Haw, but a device to punch holes in the ground. Thus, a flier who “augured in” with his aircraft and the defective engine with one wing on fire basically drilled a hole into the earth, more or less obviating the need to dig another one. Just stick in a cross and a marker and call it a day.
As the nation prepares to dig in for another four years, it’s hard to tell who’s going to dig a deeper hole. Trump detractors highlight the numerous gaffes and spurious claims ever since he first descended The Tower to announce his candidacy. And to be sure, there were plenty. And yet not only did he NOT dig a hole from which he could not emerge, he built an even higher mound on which to stand. And the more dirt his opponents threw at him, the higher he built that mound.
Ronald Reagan was called the Teflon President because nothing ever stuck on him. Trump, on the other hand, may be the Magnet President. He seems to relish in the opprobrium.
And why not? Consider who’s throwing the dirt. Lately, Meryl Streep denounced the president-elect at one of the dozens awards ceremonies celebrities indulge in because of their oppressed status. Streep also stood up for Roman Polanski, a convicted child rapist, who received – wait for it – an award! From the Hollywood elite! When celebrities recognize someone who could not be present to accept it because he would walked off the stage in handcuffs, you can be sure the bar for moral standards has been set rather low.
The harder they hit the nail, the deeper it goes. And like it or not, the nails have been fighting back against the hammers. If you want your opponent to maintain his popularity, here’s how to do it
1. Send out a Tweet like Charlie Sheen, begging God to take “Trump Next Please!” six times. I guess he wanted to meet the limit on characters. Charlie Sheen appeared in an interview after getting fired from a TV show because of drug and alcohol abuse. He survived because he has “tiger blood.” He was also accused of holding a knife to the neck of his estranged girlfriend. Who’s winning now, Chuck?
2. Attempt a boycott of LL Bean – not exactly a hotbed of conservative activism – because one out of more than 50 family members contributed to a Trump political action committee. A donation of $60K is not pocket change to the average American, but a film doyenne like Streep might find this under the sofa cushion.
3. Promise you’re going to move to Canada if your opponent is elected, then stay put. If you’re Alec Baldwin, you can do this as often as necessary. Otherwise, someone should invoke a law to apply to celebrities concerning endorsements.
Years ago, football legend Joe Namath wore stockings to demonstrate to women how good they would look on their legs. The FCC ruled that celebrities must actually use the products they endorse. Is it too much to ask that celebrities stand by their public vows? - January 17, 2017
CUPCAKES AND CRYBABIES
Well, how about THAT!
Nobody saw this coming. I was convinced that Nurse Ratched in a pantsuit was going to walk away with this, and both houses of Congress.
This year has not been an edifying lesson in Democracy. Trump didn’t deserve to win, but we didn’t deserve Hillary, either. But, as they say in poker, you gotta play with the hand you were dealt. Joker’s wild. We must simply hope that he turns out to be a better president than he was a candidate.
We’re already off to a good start. Trump kept Hillary out of the White House. She LOST. If she’s disappointed, imagine what Bill must be thinking. No living in the White House, stalking the corridors for interns; no overnight stays in hotels all around the world, stalking the halls for maids; no fundraisers, stalking the room for waitresses; no . . . well, you get the idea.
Another big plus is watching grown men crying on live TV. As the returns filtered in, with erstwhile blue states turning red – Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Ohio, etc. – Hillary supporters began looking subdued, then somber, then . . . are you crying? Really, a grown man, crying? Is that what too many Starbucks lattes do to you? Are you eating enough meat? You DON’T eat meat? Oh, well, have a granola bar. Crybaby.
The election brought out more crybabies than a maternity ward. Colleges across our fruity plain held “cry-ins” and allowed students to postpone exams because of emotional stress. The Washington Post reported that some colleges offered students Play-Do and therapy dogs. Seems to me therapy cats would fit in better. If you think losing an election is hard, wait’ll you graduate and have to show up for work. Every day.
Suck it up, cupcakes. Everybody else feels the same way and their rainbow pony is stuck in traffic.
Many celebrities swore they’d move to another country if Trump won. It’s a lengthy list, but right at the top are Whoopi Goldberg, Amy Shumer, Lena Dunham, Miley Cyrus, and Jon Stewart. I’m retired, so I’d be happy to pitch in and help them pack. I’m not holding my breath, though. Alec Baldwin made the same promise if Bush were elected. He reneged twice.
If only a few of them follow through, we’ll be well on the way to making America great again. - November 11, 2016
As the ads on Ginseng knives declaim, But wait! There's more! Co-hostess Michelle Collins, who calls herself a comedian, smirked, “She helps patients with Alzheimer’s, which I know is not funny, but I swear you had to see it. … I swear to God it was hilarious.” In another Tweet, she sneered that nurses should “prescribe yourselves a Valium and let’s just all relax."
Speaking of The View, it declined nearly 50 percent among women 25-54. In the ensuing uproar, she moaned, “I did not know she was a nurse. I just was not paying attention." No kidding.
If you're still wasting your life watching Whoopi and the rest of her coven natter mindlessly for an hour, I plead with you to unplug the tv before Medusa turns you into stone. - September 18, 2015
I’ve had a few days to simmer down in the wake of the narrow Supreme Court decision on Obamacare or, as I’m calling it, Caretax. Outrageous as it was, conservatives should be inured to this by now.
In 1973, another Republican appointee wrote the Roe v Wade decision which, interestingly, was severely castigated by a DEMOCRAT appointee. I daresay you’ll never see an assist from a Democrat appointee ever again on a conservative issue of such importance. Common sense has been strained out them early in their career.
True, Roe v Wade knocked down every single state protection of the unborn, but it didn’t require women to get abortions. But the damage was done, and it was irreparable. The road was paved for even more literary license to allow justices to rewrite the Constitution.
People all across this fruity plain pay taxes for things they’ll never need or use. Everybody pays taxes for schools even if some don’t have kids in school, or don’t have kids. Don’t drive a car? You still pay transportation taxes. And so forth. And don’t forget the subsidies for stuff you’ll never eat, drive, wear or live in.
It’s only natural the solons in that whitewashed tomb would connect those two dots. So now we all get to pay a tax – a tax vociferously denied by the very man who proposed the law – on something opposed by a huge majority of voters but midwifed by congressmen with promises of favoritism and waivers.
As long as we’re governed by men we should expect disappointment by our highest court. Dred Scott and Plessy v Ferguson are two examples embraced by liberals and conservatives alike. As Mark Twain famously observed, those that respect the law and love sausage should watch neither being made. I can live on sausage. But I don’t expect other people to pay for it. - July 1, 2012