May 31, 2017

5000 posts later...

Back in November 2008 I first took to blogging about politics here on Nonsensible Shoes.  This is my 5000th post.  In the intervening 8+ years, I've gotten over 1.4 million page views (wow!).  I never imagined that I'd still be blogging this much later, especially if someone had told me that for all of the effort, I'd have made less than $500 in that time.

Seems futile when you put it in that light.  But that's not the primary point of this blog. 

The purpose of this blog is to espouse common sense conservatism and to be part of the pushback against liberalism in it's current form - hateful, deceitful and economically and socially ineffective.  I'd hoped to be part of a deluge of conservatism against the deluge of angry, bitter liberal tripe.  Unfortunately in the time since I started the blog we've gone from BushHitler to Kathy Griffin beheading president Trump.  In other words, on the left, nothing has changed.  Perhaps collectively conservative writers/bloggers have changed some minds.  We should regard those as wins. But the left is just as bitter, as deceitful and as dangerous to liberty as ever they were.

That does not make blogs like this failures.  It makes us as important as ever in standing up to progressive liberalism in order to do everything we can possibly do to ensure a progressive dystopia does not envelop America, which I regard as the last great hope for humanity.

#Covfefe pocket tweet party time

This was clearly an incomplete tweet that became a pocket tweet by president Trump.
"Despite the constant negative press covfefe."
The left could not wait to portray it as a president out of touch with, I don't know, English maybe?  It's a meme. Even the president was able to joke about it.

Yawner at CNN.

I know what the real meaning is however. According to Urban Dictionary a Fefe is a block party or a house party. Apparently the media's house parties suck.  You know that's the case because they are going to be throwing a party over the tweet. Lame. Good thing the media parties are by invitation only. The real story is that the media party is almost over.

The deluge is working

Yesterday I was listening to Rush Limbaugh and I was stunned that he was telling listeners to tune out (not of his show, but of the mainstream media deluge (assault) on president Donald Trump). I understand the rationale - it's disheartening to hear the constant drumbeat of Russia/incompetence/malfeasance that they fabricate about the president.

But to hear Rush Limbaugh say something like that makes me wonder if fatigue is setting in for Trump supporters .  Rush has always maintained that words matter, that paying attention matters and that fighting back matters.  To hear him advise people to step back a bit for their own mental health makes sense.  But, and it's an important but, that is succumbing to the onslaught because it means not fighting back 100%.  It's important to fight back because if you don't the deluge wins.  We are literally fighting a liberal tsunami of vitriol and deceit.  You cannot step back  and still win.  You need to fight harder, and more intelligently than your political opposition who hold all the high cards - media, education, entertainment, etc.  We need to organize our own efforts to break these important strangleholds.  Stepping back does not accomplish that.

To put a finer point on it - Rush is not asking his listeners to skip listening to his show - he was talking about the mainstream media. But that does not change the overall implication.  You cannot effectively refute a charge in a conversation with your liberal friends if you don't know about it.  You need to know what the media is fabricating.  You also need to know the truth (ergo, Rush, Breitbart etc.)

Rush is frustrated.  I get that. I am too.  For my own part I've been posting less, in some part because I have been listening less.  It's also harder to defend than to attack in politics.  But that does not make it any less necessary.  Also, the frustration we are experiencing is not entirely media driven.  A lot of it is directed at Republicans who are not moving effectively enough or quickly enough on president Trump's agenda to repeal and replace Obamacare, lower taxes, reduce regulation etc.  Those issues if successfully addressed would absolutely kill the media onslaught.  A booming economy trumps (pun intended) slander and faux scandal guaranteed.  Move the agenda forward as if your political life depends on it Republicans, because it kinda does.

Kathy Griffin is a symptom of a sick liberal culture

In case you missed the latest news cycle, this happened:
Here’s what’s happened in the past 19 hours: perpetual try-hard Kathy Griffin tweeted a photo of herself holding an extremely bloody and realistic (though extremely fake) decapitated head of Donald Trump, people got mad and accused her of promoting violence, Squatty Potty dumped her as a brand spokesperson, she deleted the image from her feed, she uploaded an apology video, and then President Trump tweeted that she “should be ashamed of herself.” Oh, and at some point during that timeline, the Secret Service got involved.
Normally I would not show this outrage but I think I have to do so at this point. As repulsive as this is, people need to see it.  It's liberalism with the mask taken off.  This is how they really think.  Kathy Griffin was simply doing what many progressive liberals are thinking.  Some liberals might only be mad at Kathy Griffin because she's errantly exposed their true feelings that they would dare not speak in mixed company.   Some no doubt are also legitimately offended by her actions.

People are rightly mad at Kathy Griffin. But she's not the real problem, she's just a symptom of the real problem. The real problem is a liberal culture that encourages free thinking ONLY if you agree with their point of view. The self-reinforcing nature of the liberal echo chamber creates an environment where it becomes not only okay but is encouraging of an attempt to push boundaries. Again, only so long as you push it in the direction they desire.

Kathy Griffin got too far in front of the curve of what is acceptable. But if this is allowed to continue, by 2020, her asinine attempt at humor might already be mainstream-ready. This is why the culture of political correctness and of liberal media domination needs to be repudiated and stopped. Without an effective countermanding voice to say "this is unacceptable", it is only going to get worse.

May 27, 2017

Saturday Learning Series - Travelling to Mars

Moon?  Been there, done that.  Let's go to Mars. Now exactly how safe is it?

May 26, 2017

Bill Whittle vs Bill Nye (it's not even close)

Bill Whittle destroys Bill Nye the science guy (except he's not).

Friday Musical Interlude - Beach House

A very 80's sounding "Wishes" by Beach House (from 2012 I believe).  This video version is from their short film Forever Still.

May 25, 2017

President Trump scolds NATO 'partners'

Since when is pointing out facts scolding?  And even if it is, so what? NATO partners have been taking advantage of America for years.
BRUSSELS — President Trump exported the confrontational, ­nationalist rhetoric of his campaign across the Atlantic on Thursday, scolding European leaders for not footing more of the bill for their own defense and lecturing them to stop taking advantage of U.S. taxpayers.

Speaking in front of a twisted shard of the World Trade Center at NATO’s gleaming new headquarters in Brussels, Trump upbraided America’s longtime allies for “not paying what they should be paying.” He used a ceremony dedicating the memorial to NATO’s resolve in the aftermath of the 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States as a platform to exhort leaders to “focus on terrorism and immigration” to ensure their security.
Call me overly obsessed with facts,  but countries paying less that 2% of their GDP are not living up to their obligations and instead are doling out generous welfare and free healthcare on the backs of American taxpayers who are making up the difference.

May 22, 2017

President Trump, trailblazer

Back when Obama was first running for president, I warned some friends who supported him that less important than the first African American president would be the first successful African American president.  My argument against Obama was not based on race it was based on ideology.  Obama was a far left candidate with policies not suited to America.  If he was going to be a president that delivered uninspired results, he would make it more difficult for there to be a second African American president for a long time to come.  Perhaps the implications had a racial component, but the rationale for arguing against his presidency was strictly based on his policy positions.  While I believe a quality African American candidate with sound policies can still win the presidency, I don't think it will happen with a Democrat as the nominee.  Democrats have taken the wrong lesson from his presidency.  We are at the early stages of a Trump presidency but there are some remarkable similarities in terms of being a trailblazer.

On the heels of an historic deal with Saudi Arabia, president Trump is now in Israel and making a similarly big impact.  President Trump has an opportunity to be a trailblazer for a businessman in charge of the government. Big deals and a booming economy, jobs aplenty may not make a difference with the media but it will do so with the American people.  Conversely a failure on those fronts will matter too.  No attempt to delegitimize president Trump by the left will matter.  The American people can and will overlook that if president Trump is successful.  But a failure on the economic front will cause Americans to perhaps take to heart a bunch of those fake news stories about Russia, chaos in the White House, president Trump being ill-equipped to handle the presidency.  The stuff that won't stick now, will stick.

Both presidents Trump and Obama were trailblazers but there is the opportunity for president Trump to for it to be for different reasons.  For president Obama it was because he was the first African American president, for president Trump it can be for being the first successful outsider in the role.  President Obama was successful in his agenda but in the long run if president Trump is successful economically (and he is set to be so, policy-wise at least), the Obama's presidency will in retrospect to even his admirers seen as less than successful. 

A successful Trump presidency really threatens the status quo.  For a future businessman to run, he might need only surround himself with quality legal advisers and the American people might see the benefits of having someone with a sound business sense in the White House.  Instead of being run by lawyers, it can be run by common sense.  President Trump might be not only a trailblazer for business people but for any and all outsiders.  In that sense a successful Trump presidency would bring a real notion of democracy and equality of opportunity back to America.  How can you argue against a successful achievement of that outcome?

Passing of a friend

On Saturday a good friend passed away.  The publisher of  Bob's Rants died.  He will be missed by many. Godspeed Bob.

May 21, 2017

Sunday verse

Have courage, strength and faith.

May 18, 2017

Milton Friedman vs SJWs

Imagine Milton Friedman trying to talk at a university in America today.  His cogent arguments would be considered hate speech and he probably would not even be allowed or invited to speak in many cases.  

SJWs today are anti-ideas.  Watch how Milton Friedman answers a question in the 1970s without being shouted down.  As a bonus his answer is masterful and hard to refute.  The real story though is that his ideas, perhaps disliked were at least heard.

NOTE - I do not believe that's Bernie Sanders, but the ideas Friedman espouses nevertheless, do indeed school current Bernie Sanders.

Global Warming Reminder - still not happening

Global Warming is still just flat earth conspiracy for the 21st century.  It's a created hoax (please click that link and watch the video there, it's not shareable or I would include it here).  Here are some other reminders from some of the scientists who say the debate is not over.  It should be because evidence supports no global warming.

Not convinced? How about a Nobel laureate telling you it's a hoax?

How about the co-founder of Greenpeace saying it's a hoax?

May 17, 2017

Trust, two ways - government and people

Quality takes time.
Trust is essential in relationships but it is absolutely essential when it comes to how we expect government to operate. People need to trust that government will act in their best interest, and do so effectively.  Political differences come down how much people trust their government and consequently, how much they want the government to govern and how much they want the government to stay out of way.  Conservatives do not trust government to do things more effectively than the free market, liberals on the other hand trust government more implicitly and believe that it will act in the best interest of the public more effectively than the 'invisible hand'.

Liberals complain about sinister big business and yet put trust in a government far bigger than any single business.  Government is bureaucracy. All those departments trying to justify their existence have to find problems.  It's a recipe for sinister, self-serving decisions.  Big government even if it is not sinister, is still a recipe for inefficiency.

A defining example of  government "efficiency" is Obamacare.  It was  more than 2000 pages put together in a matter of months by cobbling together pieces of ideas from practically everywhere. Consistency, critical re-evaluation and working together (not to mention bipartisanship) were not part of the effort.  In retrospect, it's the paper tiger of legislation.  It was all sizzle and no steak.  It was hollow and left to it's own devices, it will collapse under it's own weight.  There's no way something like that hodgepodge could go wrong, right?  

For odd juxtapositional comparison, consider the best-selling album Rumours. Five (unfortunately) drug-infused musicians who were constantly at each other's throats but were nevertheless talented, spent a year putting the album together.  Eleven songs, approximately 45 minutes of music that are brilliant.  It took longer to produce than Obamacare and was considerably less detailed though far more eloquent.

Government does not deserve the trust it has been bestowed by the left today (president Trump aside).  On the other hand, government owes the public more trust than it has offered in recent history. Dodd-Frank, FATCA, the EPA regulating farmers' dust, the IRS and its predatory investigations of Tea Party groups  - it is all based on the premise that people cannot be trusted to do things for the greater good and must be forced to do so.  That's fundamentally sad, and largely wrong. In Canada, with a much more left-leaning government than America, citizens  donate to charity at a much lower rate than their American counterparts.  That comes down to two factors: (i) higher taxes and therefore lower disposable income to provide donations and (2) less tax benefit for donating because the government would rather have the money than provide the deduction.

Give people the freedom to help others, spice it with tax incentives and you will have a lot of charity happening.  Americans are more generous than Canadians not because they are fundamentally better people - people are people - but because the system encourages it to be so. And why does the system encourage it?  Because their is more trust.  Not enough trust, but more than elsewhere.  You give that away as an American, at your peril.

May 11, 2017

Left Atwitter

Everyone who was screaming for former FBI Director Comey's head (or job at least) when he reopened the Hillary Clinton investigation in October is now screaming that his firing by president Trump is unjust.  How do you take someone with that sort of flip-flop in position seriously?

Answer: You can't.  

The whole Russia investigation is a political witch hunt to destroy president Trump. For 7 months this supposed investigation of president Trump's White House has led to absolutely zero charges.  It will eventually lead to zero charges.  If Hillary Clinton could get away with keeping classified documents in an unsecure environment ( a very serious crime with a lot of evidence) then this pursuit of Trump collusion with Russia (with no evidence revealed so far, and none forthcoming)  is destined to fail.

But that's not the point is it?  The point is to smear the president indelibly so that he not only cannot win re-election in 2020 but he cannot govern effectively in the interim.  The point is to invalidate his mandate in the minds of the public.  And it's working - so far only with liberals and Democrats already predisposed to hate the president anyway.  But they did this same thing with the second president Bush and they tried to do it with Ronald Reagan (without success).

So far Trump is doing many of the right things policy-wise.  The economy is rebounding on the speculation of the implementation of his economic agenda.  But it's becoming clear that he is not the next Reagan.  In the face of the onslaught, he has not elevated his communication to the level of Ronald Reagan.  Perhaps he can't.

In the face of the onslaught though, I'd urge conservatives to stand fast, so long as president Trump continues to attempt to deliver on his campaign promises.

May 10, 2017

Like clockwork, Trump derangement mania continues

With president Trump firing FBI Director James Comey a few things are certain. (1) Democrats will claim this is a Constitutional crisis precipitated by the firing of a man they were still excoriating last month(2) Republicans will panic and run like scalded dogs from the president, afraid to defend him for firing a man who seemed unable maintain a level of stability and continuity at the FBI (3) Trump will keep being a bull in a China shop (for better or for worse) (4) the media will be in full on hysteria mode.

In other words, this is business as usual, so far, in the Trump era.

It's worth noting the the acting Director in lieu of a replacement, will be a Hillary Clinton friend.

May 9, 2017

Comedians on Political Correctness (Part 1)

Back in the Cold War Era, liberals used to say that the way to defeat the totalitarianism of the Soviet Union was not to defeat them the way president Ronald Reagan did - by outdoing them in military spending, rather by exposing them to the lifestyle of the west.  By trading with them and giving the Coca Cola, blue jeans etc. they would be emotionally won over by the superiority of Western culture and socio-economic values.  Okay, it was never really tried so we don't know whether it might have worked.

But it's interesting that the left wanted this approach - engagement - in defeating the Soviet Union (maybe disingenuously perhaps), but do not espouse the same approach when it comes to ideas within Western society.  The want to police your language if you disagree.  In essence they want to police your thoughts.  Now that liberal control of the media is ubiquitous, suddenly having counter-cultural ideas are poison.  When liberal counter-culture was more of a sub-culture, it was the exact opposite: challenging their ideas was repression.  Apparently liberals are pretty much all ironically-challenged.

Comedy is an area that is being hard hit by political correctness.  Thankfully comedians are standing up to face it.  For those of us on the right, it's ironic that we seem to need to rely on comedians to fight this battle because we can't seem to do it very effectively ourselves.  Nevertheless, comedians do their verbally astute best to carry the fight against political correctness forward. Well some of them do.

Most recently, John Cleese:

Jerry Seinfeld:

Bill Maher, normally a liberal lunatic, sees it too, albeit from that perspective.  If it has gotten to Bill Maher, you know political correctness has gone way, way too far.

More examples to follow.

May 8, 2017

France Trumps Le Pen

Marine Le Pen, populist nationalist leader - not really the far-right extremist as the media so resolutely describes her - lost France's runoff election to Globalist, Socialist (aka "centrist" if you ask the mainstream media) and clueless neophyte, Emmanuel Macron in a blowout election.  Sad as it is for reformers around the world, it's not surprising.  France has become hopelessly socialist, hopelessly globalist and hopelessly the opposite of Brexit and Trumpian nationalism in America.

Heck, Macron has already threatened Poland with sanctions for not accepting their share of Syrian refugees.  

Le Pen was a long shot, not because her message was wrong, but because France is so far gone. It's going to turn into Greece (economy-wise) + Germany (immigration-wise) on a much larger scale because of this election.  And when that inevitably happens it's going to be hard to continue to feel sympathy for such a misguided nation of rubes.  Sorry France, but that's the truth.

May 6, 2017

Saturday Relaxation

Thought I'd share a Live Cam from the British Virgin Islands that I discovered this week. It might not be interesting at all hours, but it certainly has a relaxing feeling to it.

May 5, 2017

May 4, 2017

Well, that just happened

HR1628, The American Health Care Act of 2017, presented by Republicans, just passed Congress.

I swear on the live feed you could hear Republicans singing "Na na na na na na hey hey goodbye."

UPDATE: It seems it was Democrats singing, under the mistaken belief that Republicans just shot themselves in the foot. It's funny because these are the same people who passed Obamacare without reading it.

What just happened has no reason behind it

Well, I have to admit, I didn't see this coming.  President Trump was sounding like he was willing to work with Democrats.  I thought it was a bluff, or more accurately, a threat to get Republicans to work with him instead of being obstinate and locking in to the status quo.  Instead, it appears Republicans are the ones willing to work with Democrats to the exclusion of the Tea Party caucus.  Just, wow.

I suppose this should have been predictable.  A vast swath of establishment Republicans are pretty much RINOs anyway. So openly and eagerly working with Democrats is not a big stretch for them. Nonetheless, it stings as much as Bill Whittle et. al.  discuss here:

May 3, 2017

Note to GOP - snatch the first Trump offer you get

Donald Trump often sounds like a Democrat - so says Bloomberg - and he's "poking every major constituency in the eye" referring to Republican doctrine must haves.
This try-anything-that-works approach helped Trump win the White House, with voters who were tired of rigid partisan ideology, but it has made governing more challenging as fellow Republicans often don’t know what’s coming next.
And that's the point. The Republican congress has moved abysmally slowly and has yet to learn that what got Trump elected was the push to do something, anything, that might fix the economic and moral malaise America finds itself deep within. Trump would be smart to start moving left, if only to scare the GOP into a sense of urgency. If they see an Obama II agenda shaping up, they might be more willing to urgently engage the president and strike a deal that includes much or some of president Trump's agenda items in exchange for a more right-leaning package. With appointees like Gorsuch for the Supreme Court the president has proven he can do conservatism. What he likely won't do, is conservatism on establishment terms. Learn from that GOP.

May 1, 2017

99% of what?

Something I never understood was the protest movement claiming to be the other 99%.  Who would want to be the 99% part of anything?  The reason the so-called 1% are who they are is because they don't think like the herd.  They are unique. They are creative thinkers.  And if they aren't, if they're only lucky, then they will return to the herd eventually.

Trying to make the 1% feel bad for being different is anti-liberty. It's anti-creativity. It's anti-thought.  I'm pretty sure Albert Einstein for example was in the top 1% of his field.  He did mankind a service by being so.
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