All you Trump deniers out there should step back for just a moment and think about the person the American people have elected president.

Forget how much you hate the guy and how you knew all along that he could never become president. Put that aside and think objectively for a moment. First of all, this is a man who inherited some money, a lot of people do. But he took his inheritance and turned it into a multibillion dollar, internationally known company. Not many people do that. He has also written best selling books and hosted a top rated television show.

The folks who decided that all of these accomplishments were accidents are now trying to figure out what happened on election night.

After all these accomplishments, at a time when many people are slowing down and looking for a more relaxing lifestyle, Trump decided that he wanted to be president of the United States. This is not easy by anybody’s standards. Trump started off by beating the pants off the best the Republican Party had to throw at him. He beat them in gang fights and he beat them one on one.

Then he went up against the Clinton political machine, which is supposed to be one of the best in the business. Trump defeated Hillary Clinton where it counted, in the Electoral College – and it wasn’t even close.

So no matter what you think of his hair, or his ego, this is an accomplished man who sets out to achieve a goal and then does. Trump is not going to make novice mistakes on diplomatic customs like some of his predecessors. You can bet he’s not going to hire a Russian translator out of the phone book to translate for him in Poland like Jimmy Carter did.

But Trump is going to blunder. The biggest transition for Trump may be the difference in running a company, where as CEO you make a decision and then it is done, to being president, where you make a decision and then see if you can convince enough folks in Congress to go along with you.

It’s a very different world and Trump has never been involved in politics before, which means he gets to ask the question, “Why do we do it that way?” Sometimes it turns out the answer is because it has always been done that way and sometimes it’s because it’s the only way it can be done.

*****

I’m not a big fan of the Democratic Party but I do love the Democrats’ pick for House Minority Leader. Having Rep. Nancy Pelosi as the leader of the House congressional Democrats means that the Democrats are looking backwards and will be even less of a factor in the upcoming Congress than they are in the present Congress.

Pelosi is on her way out. She is already 76. If the Democrats win control of the House in 2018, which is enormously unlikely, are they going to elect her speaker at 78?

No, what this means is that the Democrats still have absolutely no idea what happened to them on Nov. 8. They believed their own pundits and pollsters and still believe them. The Democrats thought there was no way Hillary Clinton could lose and she would sweep a bunch of Democrats into office. Pelosi no doubt thought she would be speaker again. When everything the Democrats – including the Democrats who make their living giving political prognostications – had fell apart, the Democrats had no plan B. So they are still putting the remains of plan A in place, even though the main parts of plan A, getting Hillary Clinton elected president, fell through as well as the plans to win a Democratic majority at least in the Senate and maybe the House too.

It gets better because Pelosi is now saying that despite the fact that the Democrats lost everything there was to lose on Nov. 8, she doesn’t think the Democratic Party needs a new direction. I know they say it’s not true, but new research may prove that overuse of Botox really does numb the brain. Pelosi is, as noted, 76. There must be entire Botox ranches that do nothing but raise the Botox necessary to keep Pelosi’s face smooth as an egg. Of course, her face is frozen in one expression, but it’s a small price to pay if you want to look like a 76-year-old who had used way more Botox than is good for you, and that is certainly the look she has achieved.

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OK, I listened to National Public Radio again and it is fine if these people want to be “We Hate Trump” 24-7. This is America and they have every right to express their outrage that the American people would be so stupid as to elect someone who they don’t think has the qualifications to be president. But there is absolutely no way under the sun that I should be forced to pay for such a network.

I heard someone on public radio say that charter schools had ruined public education. Of course, this was accepted as a fact. It means that in North Carolina about 150 charter schools have ruined over 2,500 public schools in the state. It is an incredible accomplishment, one that certainly defies belief, but it is what passes for fact-based reporting on the left these days.

The interesting part of the statement is that if you take out the silly part about a few charter schools destroying public education – an immense system – the reporter was admitting that public education has been destroyed. That is fascinating because the left has maintained that there is nothing really wrong with public education that a few more dollars wouldn’t fix.

On NPR I heard stated as a fact that 90 percent of what Trump said was false. This statement is false on its face.

For example, when Trump gave a speech in Greensboro and said, “It’s great to be here in Greensboro, North Carolina,” there you had facts that are true, although you could argue about the “It’s great to be here” part. But even if you don’t think that’s true, it doesn’t mean it’s false.

If, for instance, you don’t believe that Trump is going to build a wall, it isn’t a false statement for him to say that he will. It may turn out to have been a false statement, but you can’t say it is false now because you don’t know whether he will build a wall or not.

As one would expect on NPR there was no mention of the fact that Hillary Clinton told some whoppers herself out on the campaign trail. She said that there was no classified information on her private homebrew email server. Now that is a false statement. There was classified information on her server; it is not debatable.

But why quibble about political has-beens?

Trump and the Republicans in Congress need to immediately cut off all federal funding for the Public Broadcasting Service. It is a liberal propaganda machine and it is way past being reformed. NPR claims that only a small percentage of their funding comes from the federal government. So if the folks at NPR are being honest, losing federal funding at all levels will hardly cause a blip in their budget.

If, however, they are not being entirely honest about how much of their funding comes from the federal government, they are going to have to get out and raise some money pretty quick.

I predict the latter.

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The left is saying that Trump has broken his promises because now he is saying that the wall might be a fence in some places. Wow, wouldn’t it be nice if the liberal media were so nitpicky with Democrats? Small things like Obamacare is going to cost less and you can keep your doctor? Those seem to be pretty big lies but evidently the press didn’t think so.

What I took away from Trump’s talk about a wall on the Mexican border was that a wall, a fence, an electronic force field, something would be put in place so that people cannot stream across the border at will. I don’t think most Trump supporters care whether the wall is brick and mortar, metal or carbon fiber. The test for the wall will not be how closely it resembles the Great Wall of China but how well it works.

But I love this quote from Larry Summers, the former Harvard professor who worked in the administrations of both Bill Clinton and Barack Hussein Obama: “Finally, fences, walls and barriers are not an effective approach to resisting undesired flows of people.”

Think about it all the people who have fences around their yards, the businesses that have fences, stadiums and arenas that have fences to keep people out. Those fences don’t work? It is an amazing statement and it makes me wonder if a roof is an effective way to keep the rain off my head or if a blanket is an effective way to stay warm in the winter. If fences don’t really keep people out then we may have to rethink everything.

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Those who are still stunned that Trump won may want to consider momentum rather than pure polling data in the next big race. When a race is close, momentum makes a huge difference, but it’s harder to track than just people saying how they plan to vote.

Historically, candidates have come back from what appeared to be huge deficits in the final weeks because they had momentum and the support for their opponent was never strong.

In 2012, the way I saw the election was that Mitt Romney was building momentum right up until the debate where Candy Crowley decided to become a participant and not the moderator. That appeared to take the wind out of Romney’s sails. If he could be stopped dead in the water by a newsreader, how in the world was he going to face down world leaders?

Trump had some blips in his momentum, but they seemed to all be caused by Trump being Trump. In the final weeks Trump was looking and acting more presidential than he had earlier in the campaign. He was also out campaigning everywhere. The news media didn’t make much of it, but Hillary Clinton wasn’t making nearly as many campaign appearances as one would expect a candidate who is losing to make. Oh, but she didn’t know she was losing because she believed her own press releases and her zealots in the mainstream media who couldn’t imagine that she would lose.

In that way the Hillary Clinton campaign believing their own supporters, who happened to be reporters and editors, worked in Trump’s favor. Hillary Clinton ran her campaign like she was way ahead in the polls, as if the polls were under reporting her support, not overreporting it. If Hillary Clinton had had any idea that she might lose there is no telling what kind of October surprises would have been unleashed by her campaign.

I suppose we won’t know until the books start coming out, but it seems likely they had more dirt on Trump that they didn’t use because they didn’t see the need.

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Democrats who still can’t believe they lost the presidential election continue to bring up the fact that Hillary Clinton won the popular vote. It is an interesting statistic but it makes absolutely no difference. It’s like claiming your football team didn’t really lose because they gained twice as many yards as their opponents. In football it doesn’t matter how many yards a team gains as far as the score goes. In presidential politics it doesn’t make any difference how many popular votes a candidate receives, the only thing that matters are the number of electoral votes.

Maybe this problem could have been avoided if someone on the Clinton team had read the rulebook before the game started.

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The mainstream media are nothing if not inventive. The mainstream media completely missed the presidential election. Much of what was reported about the election was dead wrong. So what does the mainstream media do? They invent this problem with fake news sites and try to blame the election on fake news sites.

Anyone who has gotten more than a toe wet surfing the internet knows that there is a whole world of junk out there. But it’s hard to make the connection between the three foods you should never eat, toenail fungus and the mainstream media believing their own press releases instead of reality.

I suppose it is absurd to think that the mainstream media would make a statement like, “We’re sorry. We got this one wrong.” That’s not going to happen. The mainstream media have pretty much stopped printing corrections. Or stopped printing meaningful corrections.

And the mainstream media are not going to move one inch to the right. The editors and journalists in the mainstream media are committed leftists who think that a bunch of uneducated slobs were fooled by Trump.

But what this election did accomplish, other than electing Trump president, is proved to millions of Americans that they cannot believe what they read or hear in the mainstream media. It demonstrated to millions who had not been paying much attention that they couldn’t trust the news they saw on television to be true. And that is huge.

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Here’s an idea that conservatives should love. Instead of Trump appointing Cabinet secretaries for all of the various and sundry Cabinet level departments, he should be appointing some un-secretaries. The job of the un-secretary would be to dissolve as much of the department as possible and then fold the remainder into some other department and go home.

It seems like every federal department spending tens of billions of dollars should be performing at least one or two useful functions. Maybe they aren’t. But getting rid of the Department of Education, which brought us common core, the Energy Department, the Internal Revenue Service, and the Department of Housing and Urban Development would be a good start.

Then there are a whole bunch of agencies that need to go, and it appears that more than a dozen have something to do with regulating climate change.

It’s funny. One of the reasons given for not eliminating federal departments is that it doesn’t save much money. When you look at a budget of about $4 trillion, saving $100 billion seems hardly worth the effort, but that is how you get to be $20 trillion in debt.

It does matter. Cutting wasteful spending should be done because it is wasteful, and it is also good fiscal policy. Besides, if you can cut $100 billion here and $100 billion there, pretty soon you’re talking some real money.

It’s true that to bring the federal budget under control the federal give-away programs are going to have to be reformed. Everybody knows that it’s going to have to be done, but nobody wants to be the one to do it.

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Beginning on Jan. 20, President Trump has earned himself a four-year lease on the most prestigious address in the world. One question floating around is will Trump actually live in the White House. The initial appearance is that the White House may not be his primary residence.

President George W. Bush spent a lot of time on his ranch in Texas, but that was halfway across the country. New York is less than 40 minutes away by air. So what difference does it make whether Trump sleeps in the White House or in Trump Tower? He may use the White House as an office and official residence, but not his actual residence.

It will certainly be a different set up from Bill Clinton. When he was elected, he didn’t own a home anywhere. It turned out the only property he owned was some land up on the White River that was supposed to be a vacation development one day. Reports are that investment didn’t work out for him too well.

The mainstream media will make a huge deal of whatever Trump’s living arrangements are, but with telecommuting, being physically in the same office with someone else is no longer required.

Trump loves New York, but the security problems with having the president of the United States living in a residential, retail, office complex on Fifth Avenue in New York must be keeping the Secret Service up at night.

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Obama gave his final national security speech this week, and to say the response from the military officers present was tepid would be kind.

Obama is not well liked by the US military and for good reason. His top advisors in the White House have no military experience, and according to reports from the White House they regularly overrule the military on military decisions.

One of Hillary Clinton’s reported accomplishments while she was secretary of state was that she had not started any major wars. You might be able to say the same about Obama, but his military policy has been a complete and utter failure.

He got out of Iraq and then had to get back in. He announced the US was pulling out of Afghanistan, but then he realized he couldn’t unless he wanted another Iraq on his hands so he didn’t, and he got the US involved in Syria. Nobody will admit how many troops we have in Syria and it takes a Middle East expert to figure out who we are supporting in Syria.

Then on the other side of the world Obama has allowed China to build military facilities in a disputed area of the South China Sea.

The Iranians released the hostages in 1981 as soon as Ronald Reagan was sworn into office. They didn’t want to mess with Reagan, but did want to mess with President Jimmy Carter for as long as possible.

Trump has already sent a message loud and clear to China by speaking with the president of Taiwan. You can safely bet that attitudes about the US and how the US will be treated are going to change on Jan. 20. So far Trump, unlike Obama, appears to be a man of his word. He will be tested, and how he performs will to a great extent determine how the US will be perceived in the world.

 

 

Parisian Promenade at Bicentennial Garden