America Can Confront Putin Without Going to War

I see too many Republicans defending/excusing Russia in order to defend Trump. This is wrong. Trump is wrong.

Romney was right. Russia is America’s number one geopolitical foe. The list of recent Russian transgressions is extensive.

Russia is led by a former KGB agent and has invaded and annexed territory from two neighboring countries, the first time this has happened in Europe since World War II. Russia is bombing civilians in Syria while supporting Iran, the number one state sponsor of terror in the world. Russia is assassinating dissidents on NATO soil using banned chemical and radiological weapons. A year ago yesterday, Russian forces shot down a civilian airliner over Ukraine. And as Trump periodically admits, Russia interfered with our elections.

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America First?

After his election, Obama went on what became known as an apology tour. He went to other countries and criticized America for past actions. Mitt Romney, along with most Republicans, rightly called him out for it.

We can have debates about what America has done or is doing, and the right way forward, but those debates should be conducted in-house. There is no excuse for the president of the United States, or any other Federal employee for that matter, condemning America in foreign lands for whatever reason, let alone to excuse the bad behavior of other countries.

It was wrong when Obama did it. It is wrong when Trump does it.

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Let’s Get Rid Of This Whole Democracy Thing

Democracy is messy and doesn’t always get the right results. Sometimes the president uses and abuses his power to harm those he should protect. Sometimes Congress fails to pass an important piece of legislation, or worse, passes a bad law. Sometimes the executive agencies enforce laws in a way we don’t like.

Enough.

It’s time we give up on democracy. Sure, we can keep Congress, the Constitution, and all that hullabaloo around for old times sake, but we need a supreme governing body that will do the right thing without having to worry about what the American people want.

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Dear Democrats: We Warned You

I have a simple message for Democrats: I told you so. And I don’t hate to say it. In fact, I quite enjoy saying “I told you so.”

In 2013, Democrats we’re frustrated that Republicans were filibustering some of President Obama’s nominees. Republicans were in the minority in the Senate and could not defeat Obama’s nominees outright, but they could use Senate procedure to keep them from being confirmed, just as whichever party was in the minority has done for decades. But instead of taking their lumps and working out a compromise with Republicans, Democrats decided to change the rules of the Senate to ram their nominees through.

Republicans at the time warned Democrats that they would not always be in the majority and would one day want the rights the filibuster offered the minority party.

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Public Sector Unions are a Conspiracy Against the Public

It’s been a good week at the Supreme Court. It is disquieting that four justices believe it is constitutional for the government to force pro-life pregnancy centers to advocate for abortion, or that the president loses his executive authority if he said bad things on the campaign trail, but in the end California’s law mandating abortion support was overturned and the so called travel ban was upheld.

While both of those cases are interesting, today I want to discuss the last case to be decided this year: Janus v. AFSCME. When the sun rose on June 27, 2018, approximately half the States had laws forcing government employees to pay union dues even if they did not want to join a union. By the time the sun set, that was recognized as an unconstitutional act.

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Who Gives More to Charity – Liberals or Conservatives?

We all know the standard tropes by now: liberals are compassionate and empathetic. Liberals care about people and their well-being. What’s more, they believe everyone deserves a helping hand and a base level of comfort.

Conservatives, on the other hand, are defined by social Darwinism. People should fend for themselves and if they can’t hack it, too bad so sad. Pull yourself up by your bootstraps or don’t, we don’t care.

At least, that’s the impression you get from watching movies and TV, or spending any time on a college campus.

And yet, study after study routinely shows that conservatives give more to charity than liberals. Why is that?

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Natural Governments and Unnatural Liberty

Revolutionary governments often keep the rhetoric, but most quickly drop the revolution.

Consider North Korea, which was created as a communist country dedicated to eradicating class differences. They have kept the ideological language of communism, but quickly morphed into a society defined by a rigid class structure with a ruling family that claims power with a logic more akin to the divine right of kings than as the vanguard of the proletariat. Instead of advancing towards a communist utopia they regressed to a government recognizable to feudal Europe.

Similarly, the Soviet Union preached a world wide class struggle and the destruction of nation states. But when threatened by Hitler, Stalin quickly set that aside and urged his people to fight for Mother Russia in the Great Patriotic War.

That’s understandable, because communism is built on lies and failed economics. But it’s not just communist governments that abandon their ideals to maintain power. At the turn of the Eighteenth Century, Haiti was embroiled in the first successful slave revolt in the modern world. The liberated slaves outlawed slavery and massacred their former masters. Then the leaders of the revolt, former slaves themselves, quickly reintroduced slavery under a different name.

The French Revolution’s ideals of liberty, equality, and fraternity turned into the Great Terror and dictatorship in just a few years.

Time after time, revolutionary zeal was set aside in the name of preserving power. I don’t know about North Korea’s Kims, but I have no doubt the leaders of the Soviet, Haitian, and French revolutions truly believed in the ideals they fought for. Some were evil (communism) and some were noble (anti-slavery, liberty), but when push came to shove, power trumped them all.

So what does this say about our American Revolution?

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