Right now I’m having amnesia and déjà vu at the same time. I think I’ve forgotten this before.
1. REPUBLICAN NATIONAL CONVENTION
I have been listening to some of the speeches this week from the RNC. I am a busy guy, so there is no way I took in the gavel-to-gavel coverage of the convention. My opinion was that this year's RNC was like a train wreck. It was exciting and disastrous at the same time. This was supposed to be when the three competing groups--Establishment, conservative, and Trumpist--would bury the hatchet, unite, and take down Hillary Clinton. Unfortunately, that just didn't happen.
The Establishment types like Kasich, Romney, and the Bushes were conspicuous in their absence. Those guys are done in the Republican party. Their only hope is for Donald Trump to lose, and the Trumpists to go back to drinking PBR and watching football and hockey highlights on ESPN. What they don't get is that the Trumpists can't afford cable or Pabst anymore. This is an important fact to remember. Those Joe Sixpack working class Republicans are more than happy with a Bush or a Romney so long as the economy is humming, and there are working class jobs. It doesn't take much to placate them. So, what happened?
Mitt Romney lost. That is what happened. And it was the way he lost. He indicated that he cared more about the 1% than working class Americans. That ended the complacency of who I call the Trumpists aka the "silent majority." If you scratch below the surface, there is not a whole lot of difference between Trump and Romney. The difference is that Trump speaks to the people in the cheap seats where Romney aimed for the luxury sky boxes. Neither man is animated by any deeply held convictions.
As for the speeches, I can note a few things. I think Chris Christie's mock trial of Hillary Clinton was his campaign to be named Attorney General if Trump wins. I think Christie would be a great AG. I cringed during Peter Thiel's LGBTQ sodomite speech. Then, there was Ted Cruz. That guy deserves his own paragraph.
Ted Cruz did not endorse Trump. He told Republicans to "vote their conscience" and for the person who they thought would uphold the Constitution. The Trumpists immediately knew that Cruz was not talking about Trump because Trump is a man without conscience or principle. That fact speaks volumes. Cruz never insulted Trump or denigrated the man or anything. He simply refrained from endorsing a man who never apologized for his slandering of the man's wife or father. Was Cruz right to withhold his endorsement? Absolutely. And Cruz told Trump he was not going to endorse him. What did Trump think was going to happen?
Cruz is truly a man of principle. I laugh when people portray him as some Machiavellian political schemer. If the man is a schemer, he is not very good at it. If you want to see what a sellout looks like, just think back to when Bernie Sanders endorsed Hillary Clinton. What did Sanders get for that? Or consider Chris Christie being reduced to beta male status after endorsing Trump early on. What do you get for selling out? You don't get anything.
Cruz will pay a political price for what he did, but it is worth paying. Cruz knows he will be hated now and loved later. As for me, I truly wish that guy had won the nomination instead of Trump. But he didn't. If Trump loses, I sincerely hope Cruz runs again in 2020. Ted Cruz is a true conservative. He is what this country really needs.
What this country doesn't need is Hillary Clinton. I support whoever the Republican is in a race. In this case, it is Donald Trump. Love him or hate him, he is better than the alternative. I can understand why guys like Cruz or Mark Levin put a wide space of daylight between them and Trump. They don't want the taint of the man clinging to them. At the end of the day, I think the Establishment and the conservatives will hold their noses and vote for Trump. And if Trump wins, they will spend the next four years being his biggest critics.
I used to like Mark Shea. Now, I don't. I quote him now:
The case for Hillary is simple. She’s not Trump. That’s it. That’s all. I support Hillary with the white hot passion of a thousand shrugs. Which is to say I’d vote for her if I had to (if I lived in a swing state), but will vote a third party protest both against the both of them since I live in ultra-violet blue Washington and don’t have to vote for her for her to carry the state.Basically, Shea makes the same argument for supporting Hillary that I make for supporting Trump. There is one big difference between Trump and Clinton. Trump says that he is pro-life and pledges to support pro-life policies and appoint pro-life conservatives to the SCOTUS. He may or may not honor that pledge. I would not be surprised if he didn't. But Hillary has virtually guaranteed that she will support the pro-death position on abortion and euthanasia with as much passion as she can muster. Shea's case for Hillary is like saying Darth Vader is a better choice than Jabba the Hutt because he looks so cool in the mask and the cape.
Here's the deal. Shea really likes Hillary. He can't go along with her abortion stuff, but he is more than willing to go along with the rest of her program. This is because Shea is not a conservative but a closet socialist. I can't see the stain of it on his pants, but I can smell it. And it isn't pleasant.
Trump is a scoundrel. Hillary is evil. It would be great to be able to choose for Luke and Leia, but sometimes, you have to gamble on Han Solo. Han was not a boy scout, but he came through when it counted. I think Trump will do the same.
3. CLINTON / KAINE
Hillary picks a Catholic in Name Only for her veep slot. Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine has only one purpose to serve in this campaign. He has to deliver Virginia. Hillary knows she has the blue states like New York and California, and she has no chance in red states like Texas. She just needs a handful of red states to make the electoral difference. Virginia is a "purple" state because it can be either red or blue. Ohio and Florida are also purple states. Virginia has 13 electoral votes.
This website is a handy way to game possible electoral outcomes. If you turn Virginia blue, that puts Hillary at 230. She needs just 40 to win the election. That leaves the battleground states of Florida, Ohio, and others. I can fill out NC for Trump and NH for Hillary. I think Trump might carry Wisconsin. Hillary will take CO and NV. PA will probably go for Hillary which leaves her one vote shy. I will give Iowa and Ohio to Trump. It could be up to Florida which Trump must win but probably won't. If Trump did win Florida, it would be a tie of 269 for each. Trump winning Florida is the worst case scenario for Hillary, yet she would still be tied with him. This is why Virginia matters.
Hillary must gamble that Florida will go for her, and it probably will. It went for Obama in the last election, so it is a good bet it will go for Hillary. But if she could afford to lose Florida and still win in Ohio. She has options. But who will deliver Ohio?
Kaine was a safe pick, and he eliminates Virginia as a possible headache. If you want to know why I think Hillary picked Kaine over someone like Elizabeth Warren, it all comes down to math. The guy is just boring. Hillary needs boring for balance.
4. Q & A
Q: Are you not a sellout for supporting Trump?
A: I became a sellout the moment I moved from being a libertarian back to being a conservative. People who understand conservatism in the Burke/Kirk mindset will understand completely why I now support Donald Trump. Conservatism is fundamentally about making the least worst choice. In any and every decision, you must make the best choice of the options you have available remembering that the perfect is the enemy of the good.
I am a principled conservative and supporting Trump does not run contrary to those principles anymore than when Reagan supported Nixon and Ford though he was a Goldwater man. At the end of the day, you vote Republican because Republicans are always better than Democrats.
I wish we had better options. I wish Ted Cruz was our guy. But he isn't. So, vote for Trump. Four years is a long time. I want those four years to be better than the last eight.
5. ODDS AND ENDS
--The Antichrist will come from Turkey. He will be Muslim, and his name might be Erdogan.
--Twitter is anti-conservative. They can ban Milo but not ISIS or BLM.
--The DNC will be a week of equating Trumpism with Nazism.
--Munich is looking like a white guy gone nuts. Expect a whole media thing about Islamophobia to drown out the reality of Muslim barbarism.
6. QUOTABLE QUOTES
Cross, toil, anguish: such will be your lot as long as you live. That was the way Christ went, and the disciple is not above his Master.
ST. JOSEMARIA ESCRIVA
Rudeness is the weak man’s imitation of strength.
Liberals claim to want to give a hearing to other views, but then are shocked and offended to discover that there are other views.
WILLIAM F. BUCKLEY
Men cannot improve a society by setting fire to it: they must seek out its old virtues, and bring them back into the light.
He who suffers in patience, suffers less and saves his soul. He who suffers impatiently, suffers more and loses his soul.
ST ALPHONSUS LIGUORI
The measure of love is to love without measure.
ST. FRANCIS DE SALES
It is not the actual physical exertion that counts towards a one’s progress, nor the nature of the task, but by the spirit of faith with which it is undertaken.
ST. FRANCIS XAVIER
7. LINKS OF INTEREST
Materialism: The False God of Modern Science
Why Are the Classics Necessary?