Coronavirus, masks, politics…and age

Masks seem to be working to fight the virus, even as some refuse them and US deaths near 100,000

In the context of the culture wars, absolutely anything can become controversial, even the wearing of face masks during a pandemic.

And as is so often the case with these things, I’m observing extremes at both ends of the continuum. Continue reading “Coronavirus, masks, politics…and age”

Amy Klobuchar’s hydroxychloroquine faux pas

CNN still likes to beat the “hydroxychloroquine is a rightwing conspiracy” drum on occasion. 

President Trump could declare that he’s a fan of vitamin C, and then that would become a rightwing conspiracy, too, in the minds of some folks. We hope for a COVID-19 vaccine by year’s end.  A cure for Trump Derangement Syndrome (TDS) is likely beyond the reach of modern medicine, though.

What does all this have to do with Amy Klobuchar? Continue reading “Amy Klobuchar’s hydroxychloroquine faux pas”

Biden’s Klobuchar dilemma

A crisis of Biden’s own making…

In his search for a viable running mate, Joe Biden seems to be leaning toward Amy Klobuchar. This has met with a mixed reaction.

The media continues to beat the drum of Stacey Abrams; but Abrams has few real qualifications to be VPOTUS. Even Biden probably recognizes this.

The Democratic Party’s African American and Latino base, meanwhile, is notably unenthusiastic about Amy Klobuchar. Klobuchar is too Midwestern, too bourgeois soccer mom, and (not to put too fine a point on it) too white. As in Wonder Bread. Continue reading “Biden’s Klobuchar dilemma”

Biden tells black people how to be black

You tell ’em, Joe!

Joe Biden gave white America yet another message in racial sensitivity the other day. He told African American interviewer Charlemagne tha God that African American voters torn between him and President Trump “ain’t black”. (So it turned out to be a grammar lesson, too, I guess.) The implication here clearly being that as a hack for the bottomlessly corrupt Democratic Party, Biden should be the African American voter’s hands-down choice. Continue reading “Biden tells black people how to be black”

The coronavirus recession and the election

As Bill Clinton famously said while campaigning for the White House for the first time: “It’s the economy, stupid.”

That was in 1992—but what about 2020?

The US economy is in bad shape as it reopens after a 2.5-month shutdown. This is an election year. The pundits are therefore speculating: Which party will win—and lose—at the polls in November?

Will the “coronavirus recession” harm Trump? Will it benefit Biden? Continue reading “The coronavirus recession and the election”

Stacey Abrams, Trump, and supermodel politicians

As if our politics couldn’t get any sillier: there is a new war of ideas brewing of late in the mainstream media and on social media: Who is more obese, the Democrats or the Republicans? Which group of politicians should be barred from the snack machines on Capitol Hill?

This all started a few weeks ago, when Nancy Pelosi referred to President Trump as “morbidly obese”. A backlash followed, as some Trump fans on social media asserted that the president is rather svelte. Continue reading “Stacey Abrams, Trump, and supermodel politicians”

Politics, Big Tech, and defining monopoly power

Trump claims the ‘radical left’ is ‘in total command and control of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Google’ and vows administration is ‘working to remedy this illegal situation’

But the president isn’t just attacking the tech giants over their politics:

Trump’s tweet came after it emerged that federal and state regulators in the U.S. are preparing to file antitrust lawsuits alleging Google has abused its dominance of online search and advertising to stifle competition and and boost its profits.

There are two issues here: a.) Do the tech giants exercise monopoly power (achieved through anti-competitive practices), and b.) Are they guilty of political bias? Continue reading “Politics, Big Tech, and defining monopoly power”

The Gary Hart scandal, 1987

It was May 1987, and the USA was gearing up for a presidential election.

Trump wasn’t running. Donald Trump was still a real estate developer in New York City, and still married to his first wife, Ivana Trump. 

Ronald Reagan was nearing the end of his second term. George H.W. Bush, his vice president, was Reagan’s heir-apparent. 

The Democrats, out of office for two presidential terms, were looking for a new standard-bearer. The likely favorite was Gary Hart, a 51-year-old Senator from Colorado. Continue reading “The Gary Hart scandal, 1987”

Mistresses, language wars, and the Associated Press

Associated Press mocked for declaring term ‘mistress’ is archaic, sexist

Notice, of course, that there has never been a term for “a man in a long-term sexual relationship with, and financially supported by, a woman who is married to someone else.”

This is no slam on women—or men, for that matter. There are certainly some married women who could afford to financially support male lovers on the side.  And heaven knows that there would be no shortage of heterosexual men willing to accept money for such a paid relationship. Men are dogs, after all. 

There is no male equivalent to the word “mistress” for the simple reason that everyone of junior high age or older already knows: Male and female sexuality are different. Men and women respond to different motivations in sexual relationships, and they face different supply-and-demand conditions. (Hint: Men are in supply, and women are in demand.) Continue reading “Mistresses, language wars, and the Associated Press”

CNN’s “Can you believe what Fox News said?” mode

Fox News dumps coronavirus coverage for anti-Obama conspiracy theory

CNN has embraced a narrative: That Donald Trump brought on the COVID-19 pandemic, and that Donald Trump is personally responsible for every American death (and probably every non-American death, too!) from coronavirus. 

Therefore, you really ought to vote for Joe Biden in November, right? Continue reading “CNN’s “Can you believe what Fox News said?” mode”

Bryan Adams should not have apologized

Singer Bryan Adams apologizes for social media post blaming ‘bat eating’ people for coronavirus

The music of Canadian rocker Bryan Adams was part of the soundtrack of my 1980s youth. His early single “Cuts Like a Knife” was a hit on MTV during my freshman year of high school. I still enjoy listening to his music from time-to-time.

Bryan Adams, like many of us, is frustrated at the coronavirus epidemic. COVID-19, which originated in China, has now killed 292,000 people around the world, including 83,000 in the United States. Continue reading “Bryan Adams should not have apologized”

Biden’s anti-Trump (Republican) outreach

Biden campaign reaches out to ‘disaffected Republicans,’ who reach right back

That was, of course, the grand argument for Biden’s nomination in the first place. Being a relative moderate within the Democratic Party, Biden will be able to reach swing voters—who will presumably include some disaffected Republicans (code for: Republicans who don’t like Donald Trump): Continue reading “Biden’s anti-Trump (Republican) outreach”

The WSJ on Barack Obama and Michael Flynn

President Trump’s personal style is not my style. Nor was he my first choice. (I voted for John Kasich in the 2016 GOP primaries.)

Nevertheless, we have only two choices in November. And I have come to believe that the Democratic Party poses an existential threat to the United States—with its embrace of socialism, anti-Americanism, divisive identity politics, and undemocratic, deep-state corruption. 

I would not have said this of the Democratic Party of 1980, or even 2000. I would say this about the Democratic Party of Barack Obama, and the Democratic leadership that has taken over since his presidency. Continue reading “The WSJ on Barack Obama and Michael Flynn”

Obama’s partisan spin on the COVID-19 pandemic

Well, boys and girls, here’s a shocker, as reported by the media wing of the Democratic Party (also known as CNN):

Obama says White House response to coronavirus has been ‘absolute chaotic disaster’

This was CNN, so of course the coverage of former President Obama was fawning and unquestioning. 

This is also an election year, during one of the most politically divisive periods of American history. Obama’s vice president, Joe Biden, is President Trump’s presumed opponent in the general election in November.

So, well…of course Obama wasn’t going to say nice things about President Trump. Obama is a politician, after all. Continue reading “Obama’s partisan spin on the COVID-19 pandemic”

Why the universal basic income (UBI) won’t work

It’s not about the Protestant work ethic; it’s about economics.

Three left-leaning senators have introduced a bill to grant a regular, taxpayer-funded income to all Americans in order to combat the negative economic effects of the COVID-19 shutdown.

This Senate trio is comprised of two names you’ve heard of—Kamala Harris of California, and Bernie Sanders of Vermont—as well as one who might have escaped your notice, Ed Markey of Massachusetts.

Harris and Markey are both Democrats. Bernie Sanders is an independent democratic socialist who identifies as a liberal Democrat when it’s convenient (like when he wants to run for president).

Their plan would provide two thousand dollars per person, to all Americans. So a family of four would get $8,000 per month, directly from the government, just like a paycheck. Continue reading “Why the universal basic income (UBI) won’t work”

Axl Rose vs. Steve Mnuchin on Twitter

I haven’t given Guns N’Roses (GNR) much thought since like…1988. That was when the band had its heyday, more or less. 

In fact, I never really gave the group much thought at all.

GNR was/is kind of like a retread of the mid-1980s act Mötley Crüe—a schtick that was already stale by 1988. When I do think of Guns N’ Roses, I usually hear Axl Rose caterwauling the refrain from “Sweet Child of Mine” in my head.

Nineteen eighty-eight was a good year for me, in most respects; but that’s a flashback from ’88 that I can do without.

But Twitter is the magic medium that keeps all past-their-prime celebrities in the public consciousness. (How many people would recognize the name “Alyssa Milano” in 2020 if not for Twitter?)

It turns out that Axl Rose, the now 58-year-old lead singer of GNR, took a potshot at U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin on Twitter.

Because of course, no celebrity is ever going to go after a Democrat on social media. Being good little herd animals, celebrities only attack herd-approved targets, i.e., Republicans.

As is usually the case in these situations, Axl Rose’s tweet wasn’t very articulate. He basically just called Mnuchin a name–the sort of thing that would simply be ignored if it had come from anyone who wasn’t a celebrity: Continue reading “Axl Rose vs. Steve Mnuchin on Twitter”

Republicans, Democrats, and decades-old sexual allegations

Being an Evil Republican™, I know that I am supposed to be giddy about the Tara Reide allegations. In 1993, when Biden was in his forties and Reide was in her twenties, the senator allegedly shoved his hand up Reade’s skirt, and committed other acts that fall short of rape, but certainly not short of sexual assault.

Here we have the smoking gun, right? The nail in the political coffin of Creepy Joe!

Or do we? Continue reading “Republicans, Democrats, and decades-old sexual allegations”

The GOP: the new party of the working class

Pinkerton: ‘Essential Workers’ Point the Way to a Republican Workers Party

Once upon a time, America lauded GI Joe and Rosie the Riveter; in 1942, the vice president of the United States declared that the 20th century should be remembered as the “the century of the common man.”

Yet weirdly, in the last few decades, an inordinate amount of praise has gone to billionaire tech tycoons and even to Wall Street plutocrats—once seen as the arch-enemy of the working class—especially if they’re progressive and woke

There’s no doubt that both the GOP and the Democratic Party have changed in the last quarter-century. 

In 1992, when Bill Clinton was elected for the first time, the Democratic Party was still predominantly the party of the mainstream working class. My maternal grandparents, like many other Americans of their generation, were both socially conservative FDR Democrats. Continue reading “The GOP: the new party of the working class”

Draft Cuomo?

He might be the Democrats’ only hope.

Before the coronavirus hit and made everything else in America borderline irrelevant, the main preoccupation of the nation was the upcoming 2020 election. Specifically, we all were waiting to see which bumbling Democrat would be tapped to challenge Donald Trump come November.

And how did that go? Suffice it to say that the Democrats’ selection process didn’t exactly raise the best and the brightest to the top. When the COVID-19 Great Pause put the country on hold, the Democrats were weighing the relative merits of:

a.) a cantankerous septuagenarian socialist who doesn’t understand how modern economies function, and

b.) a cantankerous septuagenarian Washington insider with obvious memory problems.

I’m talking about Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden, of course.

***

Let’s start with Bernie.

Bernie Sanders waxes adulatory when talking about the communist revolution in Cuba. That was the great Caribbean bloodbath where Che Guevara, Fidel Castro and friends put thousands of men, women, and children before firing squads. The Cuban communist revolution was followed by years of oppression and misery, which persists on the island to this day.

Really, Bern? You admire that?

Our best guess is that Bernie Sanders wants to try the more recent “Venezuelan plan” in America. That turned Venezuela, once the shining star of Latin America, into a hellhole where they no long have coffins to bury the dead.

But Bernie assures us that the same plan would work just fine here. “Democratic Socialism”—an oxymoron if ever there was one.

Sure, Bernie, we’ll get back to you on that!

***

Joe Biden probably has better intentions; but he’s reached a state where he’d be incapable of throttling the more radical elements in his party—which are many and worrisome.

Joe Biden, as noted above, has obvious memory problems. He also has a tendency to call Democratic voters things like “lying, dog-faced pony soldier” when they ask him uncomfortable questions at campaign events.

The Democrats seemed poised to hold their collective breath, and rally behind Biden as a figurehead. Biden would be an outwardly moderate Trojan Horse who might be able to smuggle the Democratic hard left into power.

That was the game plan, anyway. It wasn’t much of a plan, but it was the plan that the Democrats seemed poised to go with.

And then the world went to hell in the proverbial handbasket.

***

So now Joe Biden has yet another problem. It’s the same one that all of us are dealing with. The COVID-19 pandemic has made Joe Biden suddenly peripheral to the nation’s affairs.

Biden is the presumptive but unofficial nominee of the 2020 Democratic ticket. He should have something to say about all of this. But when friendly journalists have given him a chance to weigh in on the crisis, he’s been capable of little more than stumbling non-sequiturs.

Meanwhile, a majority of Americans approve of President Trump’s handling of the COVID-19 crisis.

At this rate, Donald Trump is going to have a cakewalk on Election Day.

The Democrats are going to be roadkill.

Unless…

***

Some Democrats are starting to rally around another candidate. This one didn’t participate in the tragicomic Democratic primary debates earlier this year.

I’m referring to Andrew Cuomo, whom no one was considering for president even a month ago. But the “draft Cuomo” movement is now gaining momentum.

Even though I’m a Republican, I can honestly claim that I saw this coming last week. I was listening to Governor Cuomo deliver one of his daily press conferences on the COVID-19 outbreak. I thought to myself, “Hey, this guy is a Democrat, and he sounds pretty reasonable and intelligent. Why are the Democrats so stuck on moonbats and loons, like Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders? Why don’t they run this guy?”

***

America’s governor? Maybe.

New York has become the epicenter (and in many ways, the symbol) of America’s coronavirus emergency. Through his daily television briefings, Andrew Cuomo has become “America’s governor”, in much the same way that Rudolph Giuliani became “America’s mayor” in the wake of 9/11.

Again, I’m a Republican. But as an outsider to Democratic Party culture, I can see where Cuomo has much to recommend him. Not only does he demonstrate himself to be a level-headed manager in an unprecedented national crisis, he also comes across as a moderate.

What do I mean by “moderate” exactly? Simple: not a socialist, and not obsessed with screechy identity politics debates. Cuomo has repeatedly expressed a need to get the private economy going as soon as possible. He is no glassy-eyed cuckoo of the Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez ilk.

I won’t lie to you: I probably wouldn’t end up voting for him. In fact, I almost certainly wouldn’t. But if he won the White House in November, I also probably wouldn’t fret too much about the country being in capable hands. A Cuomo presidency wouldn’t be the Bernpocalypse. It would be more like the Bill Clinton years, which (let’s be honest here) weren’t too bad, whatever your political affiliation.

***

But there’s a problem, you see: Many rank-and-file Democrats will dislike Cuomo for the very reasons that he vaguely appeals to me. Andrew Cuomo is a moderate, not a sputtering leftwing ideologue.

Joe Biden is a moderate, too, arguably. But Andrew Cuomo is a moderate who couldn’t be manipulated by the likes of Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib.

In choosing Joe Biden, the Democrats have chosen an easily manipulated Trojan Horse for the radicals. Andrew Cuomo would mark a shift back to the days when the Democratic Party was more mainstream. A return to serious adults and serious adult ideas. That might not sit well with the Bernie Bros and the “Resistance” crackpots on Twitter.

Should Trump have acted sooner against COVID-19?

Over the past week, a new narrative has emerged in the mainstream media: President Trump has finally, belatedly gotten serious about combatting the coronavirus, or COVID-19. A few brave correspondents at CNN.com—heretofore the mainstream media headquarters of the Resistance—have penned editorials of cautious praise.

Journalists aren’t the only ones. Minnesota Representative Ilhan Omar, one of Trump’s most implacable archenemies in Congress, openly praised the president’s ‘incredible’ response to the pandemic. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has had nice things to say about President Trump in recent days. In the face of this unprecedented national crisis, the lion and the lamb are lying down together—albeit at a safe social distance of six feet.

But such newfound respect for the president is by no means unalloyed. The other side of the narrative is that Trump should have known better; he should have acted sooner.

There is evidence, after all, that the intelligence community warned the president about the true dangers of coronavirus back in February—even January. And while President Trump did place early restrictions on travel to and from China, the full mobilization of the American  homeland didn’t really get underway until around the Ides of March, give or take a few days.

This brings up an obvious question, the one posed by the title of this piece: Should the president have acted sooner?

Let’s not beat around the bush about the answer: Of course the president should have acted sooner. Most of the rest of us should have acted sooner, too. Speaking of the Ides of March: On Sunday, March 15, I exercised at my fitness center in suburban Cincinnati. I was still half-convinced that I was going to be able to continue working out in a public gym, just like I always have.

But I was wrong. The very next day, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine shut down all bars, restaurants, movie theaters…and health clubs.

I failed to take COVID-19 seriously at first for the same reason that President Trump probably failed to take it seriously. We’ve seen this movie multiple times before, and it has always ended fine for Americans.

No, I’m not talking about the 2011 pandemic film, Contagion. I’m referring to events in the real world. How many times since the beginning of this century have we seen a new flu arise out of  some distant corner of the world, only to dissipate before it reaches American shores?

There have been global outbreaks of H1N1, the avian flu, SARS. None of them seriously impacted daily life in America.

We all make future predictions based on past events. Why should it have been any different this time?

The experts warned President Trump about COVID-19 in January and February of this year. That seems almost indisputable now. But those same warnings, if more generalized, were out there during the presidencies of Barack Obama and George W. Bush. They did nothing, either…so long as they didn’t absolutely have to.

Yes, Bush and Obama were both warned. Over the past fifteen years, I have heard and read multiple warnings from epidemiologists. They repeatedly said that the emergence of a truly global, society-altering pandemic was a question of when, not if.

If I knew that, as a private citizen, then Presidents Bush and Obama also knew. We should have been stockpiling protective masks, ventilators, and hand sanitizer, in the same way that we stockpile petroleum. Imagine how much more prepared we’d be now, if we’d started such actions in 2012, or 2006?

The coronavirus wasn’t the only existential threat that we might have seen coming. What about sentient human threats, like stateless Islamic terrorism?

At the beginning of this century, the cataclysmic black swan event was 9/11. As most readers will know, Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda were behind that.

The dangers of Osama bin Laden were known to President Bill Clinton. President Clinton had at least one clear chance to take him out with a missile strike. Clinton didn’t act decisively, though, for fear of the political consequences.

And what of Clinton’s successor, George W. Bush? Bush believed that he was going to be a domestic policy president. Shortly after taking office, Bush deprioritized the work of the CIA’s “sisterhood”—a group of mostly female analysts who were then closing in on the Saudi terrorist.

Less than a year into Bush’s first term, 9/11 occurred. How’s that for lack of foresight?

President Reagan, the hero of my Republican youth, played a pivotal role in bankrupting the Soviet Union with an expensive arms race that a Marxist economy simply couldn’t win. During the 1980s, American aid to the Afghan mujahideen helped turn the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan into the USSR’s Vietnam. That effort not only drove the Soviets out of Afghanistan, it also contributed to the collapse of the USSR itself.

What Reagan didn’t foresee, however, was that a decade later, Afghanistan would become the home base of the Taliban. And one of the Arab mujahideen—that same Osama bin Laden—would eventually stop killing commies and start killing everyone else, most of all Americans.

Oh, and President Reagan also didn’t foresee that after the fall of the USSR, Russia was going to turn into something that is arguably worse. Vladimir Putin’s Russia is preferable to Stalin’s USSR; but Mikhail Gorbachev’s USSR might have been preferable to this new incarnation of czarist Russia.

Reagan’s predecessor, Jimmy Carter, also failed to act when he really needed to. Carter should have recognized by 1977 that the Pahlavi regime in Iran was tottering. When the Shah of Iran visited the White House in November of that year, tear gas marred the state visit, as Iranian students studying in the US clashed with riot police. CIA analysts and State Department officials based in Iran (which was then a US ally) warned Carter that something bad was coming over there.

But Carter ignored the warnings. Or at least he didn’t act decisively on them. Fifty-two American hostages spent more than a year of captivity in Iran. And for forty years now, Iran has been not a US ally, but our most persistent and troublesome foe.

I grew up Catholic during the 1970s. In those days, the administration of John F. Kennedy, America’s sainted Roman Catholic commander in chief, was still very much a part of recent memory. Portraits of the fallen president hung in at least one of my primary school homerooms. We memorized passages of Kennedy’s 1961 inaugural address like we memorized passages of Catholic Church catechism. (I can still recite entire paragraphs of it from memory.)

Nevertheless, I can also see where Kennedy failed to heed warnings from his advisors, from history, and from common sense. Kennedy’s Bay of Pigs invasion (1961) was a disaster from the planning stage. Castro’s forces outnumbered the American-backed anti-communist guerrillas by at least 10-to-1.

Kennedy should have known that the Bay of Pigs wasn’t going to be a success. Members of the “deep state”, moreover, advised him not to proceed. But Kennedy went with his gut, and greenlighted the debacle.

The following year, Kennedy narrowly pulled us out of the Cuban Missile Crisis. But every historian will acknowledge that we could have just as easily been incinerated.

Why didn’t Kennedy foresee that the Soviets would put nuclear missiles in Cuba? After all, we had already put nuclear missiles on their doorstep, in Turkey. What the Soviets did was a logical escalation.

What was JFK thinking?

When presidents fail to heed the warnings of advisors and circumstances, the result is often a raft of conspiracy theories. There are Americans who believe that FDR deliberately sacrificed over 2,400 American lives on December 7, 1941, so that the isolationist American public would finally consent to join the war against the Axis powers.

By 1941, after all, FDR had ample evidence that a Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor was imminent. Relations between the United States and the Empire of Japan were already near the breaking point. For years, a final exam question at the Imperial Japanese Naval Academy was, “How would you carry out an attack on Pearl Harbor?”

The Japanese had also tipped their hand with their prior actions. Thirty-seven years before Pearl Harbor, Japan carried out a similar surprise attack on a different enemy. The Russo-Japanese War began in February 1904, when Japanese forces suddenly and without provocation bombarded the Russian naval base at Port Arthur, on the Chinese mainland.

Japan made an official declaration of war three hours later.

Did President Roosevelt knowingly immolate 2,403 Americans on the altar of geopolitics on December 7, 1941? If you believe that, then you essentially believe that FDR was a homicidal sociopath. I don’t believe that.

It’s possible, sure. But the far more likely explanation is that FDR, like so many US presidents before and after him, lacked a perfect insight regarding which dangers required an immediate response, and which could simply be monitored. For no president can respond with urgency to every potential danger.

Hindsight, moreover, is always 20-20. This is as true in our private lives as it is in the fates of nations. ICU units throughout the country are filled with terminal patients whose lifestyle diseases were entirely—or almost entirely—avoidable.

They were informed, ad nauseam, about the dangers of smoking. Their physician warned them to lose weight, to get more exercise. Watch that blood sugar, they were told. Your blood pressure is too high.

They had years to turn their situations around, to avoid disaster. And yet they still wound up in those ICU beds.

Why? They probably weren’t suicidal. But something else was always more urgent—more pressing. Who has time to worry about a heart attack that might strike you ten years in the future, when there is so much that demands your attention right now?

And so it goes with presidents. When you’re President of the United States, you’re constantly bombarded with warnings about short-term and long-term dangers to America. The Chinese are expanding their blue-water navy, with the aim of threatening the American heartland with nukes. Iranian and North Korean hackers are trying to take down our electrical grid. There’s also a new disease in Wuhan, China; you really ought to take a look at that.

On occasion, presidents overreact to a threat. (President Bush’s 2003 invasion of Iraq was a recent, textbook example of such an overreaction.) But most of the time, their mistake is to not recognize a potential threat until it becomes an actual, existential threat.

We can certainly make the case that President Trump fell into that trap in January and February of this year. He should have acted sooner and more decisively in a critical moment. He didn’t. But the same can be said of FDR, Clinton, Carter, Bush, and others.

President Trump is a polarizing figure. This statement doesn’t, in itself, mean that he’s objectively good or bad. It means what you already know: You can’t say his name in a group of people without eliciting strong reactions.

Americans tend to either love him or hate him. If you’re on the left, President Trump is horrible, evil—worse than Hitler, even. Worse than anyone or anything imaginable. Orange Satan.

If you’re on the right, meanwhile, President Trump is the nearly mythical figure of his political rallies (which won’t be resuming anytime soon, thanks to coronavirus). He’s The Art of the Deal, the charismatic host of The Apprentice. He’s the man who is going to Make America Great Again.

Perhaps Trump fits neither of those partisan hyperboles. Perhaps he’s simply yet another American president whose crystal ball was imperfect at a critical moment. And now, as a result, both the president and America find themselves behind the eight ball.

Notice how you don’t hear as much about the upcoming election in November in recent days. Oh yeah, that. We’ll certainly get around to it…provided we can all make it to the polls without having to don hazmat suits.

At the moment, most of us would be happy to simply see an America that is free of coronavirus. Let’s hope that President Trump, and our more conscientious leaders in both parties, get us there soon. There will be plenty of time to play Monday morning quarterback afterward, after the present crisis ends.

Bill De Blasio’s nationalization schemes are bad for your health

De Blasio: Coronavirus ‘Is a Case for’ ‘Nationalization of Crucial Factories and Industries’

Yes, because countries that nationalize industries have such a great track record on healthcare, right?

Mayor De Blasio is not a classical liberal; he is an angry, power-hungry leftist who is eager to exploit our worst instincts in a time of national crisis.

Our healthcare industry needs more competition, not less. And it certainly doesn’t need to be placed in the hands of government bureaucrats.

What we need right now more than anything (where the COVID-19 crisis is concerned) is a safe, cheap, and effective vaccine. What message will it send to companies that might develop such vaccines (as well as other life-saving products of the future), if we allow Mayor De Blasio to nationalize factories that make hand sanitizer and ventilators?

In addition to being a closet Trotskyite, Mayor De Blasio demonstrates an astounding ignorance of how modern economies actually work. (In this regard, he shares a lot of common ground with Bernie Sanders.)

Pete Buttigieg on ‘Jimmy Kimmel Live’

He’ll never be my choice for president; and he went after Amy Klobuchar with an uncalled-for vindictiveness during one of the Democratic debates. But as I’ve said before, never let it be said that Pete Buttigieg is without intelligence

And never let it be said that he is without a sense of humor, either. Earlier this week, the former candidate guest-hosted the Jimmy Kimmel Live show. He dished up some genuinely funny jokes, many of which were gamely self-deprecating.

Among other remarks, Buttigieg said that he was “the first gay man to wear pleated pants in 30 years.” 

Pete Buttigieg doesn’t apologize for his sexuality; but he doesn’t wear it on his sleeve, either. Nor does he have a chip on his shoulder about it. Now that society is increasingly normalizing LGBTQ individuals…and being gay (or trans, etc.) is not such a big deal anymore… Mayor Pete’s ability to poke fun at all aspects of himself is a quality that others should emulate.

And yes, I practice what I preach in this regard. I’m heterosexual and unambiguously cisgendered; but I always enjoy a good joke about middle-age bald men.