Yesterday’s post created interesting conversations and was the fruit of interesting conversations, but it raised some questions for people that I thought I’d answer here.
First, some analysis.
1., Obviously, the only way that Trump is not going to be the nominee is if Kasich and Carson get out, and Cruz and Rubio consolidate into a single ticket. Cruz with Rubio as VP. This is not going to happen. Trump is going to be the nominee.
2. There is much gossip about finding ways to work the system so that even if Trump is the selected nominee, someone else will be put forward, instead. If the GOP does this, it will be the end of the GOP. It is precisely because of shenanigans like that, that Trump has the support he has.
3. Many people are talking about running a third party candidate if Trump is the nominee. I find this fascinating. For the last 20 years, they’ve been shoving, “A vote for ‘Mr. Third’ is a vote for the Democrat.” Now that they are the Third, this logic is out the window. Note to the establishment: perhaps if you stopped putting up weenies, in the House, Senate, and President, there wouldn’t be this persistent threat of a third party candidate. Duh. Can you really not take a hint?
4. What people don’t understand is that if Trump is deprived of the nomination, he would not need to go ‘third party.’ There would be open warfare, with the result that Trump would take millions and millions with him. The GOP itself would, in effect, become the third party. This speaks to the post I’m about to write.
5. There is much talk about people leaving the country if Trump wins. This is one of the best arguments for Trump that I know of. Trump should immediately give air fare to all who want to leave the country. Send them off to England or Germany. These places will take anyone, and since they’re almost out of “other people’s money” to fund their socialist programs, they will welcome the influx of new money.
To the post.
In yesterday’s post, I argued that if we are so concerned that a President Trump will destroy the country, this actually speaks to a much more important, more fundamental problem: the executive branch has WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY too much power and authority. It certainly well exceeds what the Constitution states. Not that anyone has really cared about what the Constitution really states for a long time. But still.
One of the common sentiments that I heard in response to my post yesterday was that, yes, it is unfortunately the case that the executive branch has the power and authority that it does, so we don’t want Trump in that spot. As a Cruz supporter, I would certainly much rather not have Trump, but it should be very clear by now that the ‘purists’ like myself aren’t going to get our way. So, what then?
In my post, I argued that the problem and the solution are largely the same: CONGRESS.
If you simply went with what the Constitution allowed the President to do (or SCOTUS, or Congress itself, or the Federal branch as a whole), it just wouldn’t be possible for any president to do massive harm to the country. Some harm? Absolutely. Even in that more limited sense, the harm that a president could do is significant. But you would be hard pressed to think of something in your life that is not presently dictated from some level of government beyond your local municipality, with quite a few of those items falling right into the laps of the Federal government. From the amount of water in your toilet tank, to the kind of gas can you have, to what kind of information is on food labels, to the kinds of light bulbs you have… to whether or not you have health care, and whether or not having that health care will actually get you health care, or, as Obama said, “just a pill.”
The thing abut these items is that there really isn’t anything we can do about them. You literally need to persuade tens of millions of people to elect the president of your choice, and hope that this president’s policies will embody your perspectives enough to filter down to the 2,000,000+ Federal bureaucrats–bureaucrats who are adept at trench warfare and perfectly capable of working the system to maintain their own position and policies. Even Mr. Trump, or Cruz (who would be more likely to try) can monitor them all.
The GOP establishment is presently burning much brain power trying to figure out how to steal the nomination from Trump. But, a President Trump can only act on the authorities granted to him by legislation generated by the CONGRESS, sanctioned by SCOTUS, or spelled out in the Constitution. If we really are concerned about the great damage Trump can do, the legislation stripping the Executive Branch of as much power and influence as possible–ie, returning things as close to what the Constitution actually said in the first place–is a much more appropriate place to invest our time and energy. It would also have the added benefit of DOING WHAT THE HELL THEY’VE BEEN ELECTED TO DO IN THREE STRAIGHT ELECTIONS.
We can never lose sight of the fact that it was the establishment that created Trump by their refusal to make good on what has been expected of them.
Now, the other problem here runs deeper, but is connected. The establishment has no interest in radically limiting the scope of the Federal government. After all, they were complicit in created the bloated THING we have now. They love big government… although they vastly prefer they are the ones in charge of it.
The problem that the establishment has, which is shared by liberals, progressives, and other elites, is that they just don’t understand why Trump has the support that he has. To all of them, the Trump candidacy represents the manifestation of an ‘ugly under-current’ in the American populace. Now, why do they think this?
Very simply, the establishment, liberals, progressives, and other elites, all think they are absolutely the smartest people who have ever lived, and if you were as smart as them, then, well, you’d be a liberal, a progressive, and back the policies of the establishment. This puts them in a bind, because they know many people who are smart, who nonetheless do not share their views. How can someone who is intelligent not come to the same conclusions as them? Answer: they must be bigots; they must be racists; they must be misogynists; they must be greedy; they must be selfish. And so on. Hence, the spiraling and out of control ‘political correctness’ movement, replete with its war on ‘micro-aggressions’ and ‘safe spaces’ and ‘wars’ on everything.
And people are sick of it.
I saw a bit of Mike Huckabee this morning on Fox News and I thought he really put his finger on it. I began watching at around the 2:30 mark where he explained the ‘evangelical’ support for Trump:
He nailed it.
Remember, it was Paul Ryan just a few months ago that allowed funding for Planned Parenthood to sail on through for another year.
To make sure my own point is crystal clear, as much as I don’t like Trump, I believe that he is going to react favorably with pretty much whatever CONGRESS sends his way. If CONGRESS sends a bill to him that would defund PP, notwithstanding Trump’s tepid views on PP, I think he would sign that bill. If CONGRESS pushed a revised TPP, a new ‘deal’ with Iran, an overhaul or even total elimination of Obamacare, I think he’d go along with it. I’m talking about things, here, that CONGRESS heretofore has only given its own tepid opposition to… except the TPP, which, bizarrely, even the GOP… ahem… pay attention… even the GOP… supported.
We should stop trying to stop Donald Trump because we cannot stop Donald Trump without completely annihilating the GOP. Increasingly, people on the right are ‘ok’ with that. That is a BIG warning sign! Instead, we should start working to make sure that in 2016, CONGRESS has a strong conservative majority, with as few ‘establishment’ types as possible. This CONGRESS should then immediately start sending up legislation that would not only have the effect of limiting the president’s authorities and influence, but also its own.
I have to tell you that Huckabee’s comment regarding ‘ballots vs. bullets’ is prescient. Many, many, many, many people on the political right have given up on the idea that any of its elected officials are actually going to do what they are elected to do. This is why Trump has the support he does, but we have not yet seen a mass of Trump-like candidates and politicians for the House and Senate. If CONGRESS fails to follow through on conservative principles this time, regardless of who the president is, if you thought that this election cycle was extraordinary, wait until you see what is coming. Patience is wearing out.
And if you don’t like that prospect, there is a solution: if you are on the political right, you can stop treating your own base like dirt. If you are on the political left, you can stop calling people racists and bigots. If you are on the political right, when lefties start calling people racists and bigots, you can do like Trump, and tell them them they can go pound sand. Have the courage to start implementing conservative, limited government principles, while the people you deem ‘sane’ are in position to do so. Otherwise, you’ll get the ‘insane’ people. And, honestly, just like we are unable to stop Donald Trump, I don’t think we’ll be able to stop them, either.
So you see, all signs point towards Paul Ryan as being the symbol of what’s wrong in the GOP rather than Donald Trump. But you have to be willing to read those signs. So far, the movers and shakers in the GOP have been unwilling to do so.