What’s the Difference between Socialism and Democratic Socialism?

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is the new it girl of the left. She captured the imagination of liberal America when she defeated longtime Democratic congressman Joe Crowley in the Democrat primary. Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez called her the future of the Democrat Party.

She calls herself a democratic socialist.

So what’s the difference between regular old socialism and democratic socialism? We can look out to the world and see examples of socialism. There are the communist countries, most of which collapsed in the early 1990’s. Today, we most often point to Venezuela, a country with vast economic resources that elected an avowed socialist and then quickly descended into abject poverty and despotism. A google news search for Venezuela returns story after story of deprivation, misery, and brutality, all done in the name of socialism.

But that’s not democratic socialism, they say.

Continue reading

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.

Continue reading

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.

Continue reading

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.

Continue reading

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.

Continue reading

The Me First Presidency

If you spent any time in conservative circles the last decade you likely heard the complaint that President Obama was too egotistical. Personally, I think the fact he wrote two autobiographies before he was even elected to the Senate should be proof enough for anyone. But he also demonstrated his self-centeredness on a regular basis. After a significant speech, you could count on finding articles and discussions on Twitter and conservative websites about the number of times Obama used the words “I” or “me” in a speech supposedly about someone or something else.

A speech about the economy became a speech about him. When delivering the news that Seal Team Six had killed Osama bin Laden, he referenced himself more than the Seals and intelligence agents who made the raid possible.

And yet, in the race to be the most egotistical, self-centered president in American history, Trump just left Obama in the dust.

Continue reading

Death Panels Are Real. Just ask the Parents of Alfie Evans.

When America debated Obamacare in 2009, Republicans raised the specter of what Sarah Palin called “death panels.” This was not a fantasy or an exaggeration designed to take normal policy and make Democrats look bad. It was in the bill.

Continue reading

Being a Veteran does not confer Special Status in a Democracy

I spent a few months shy of five years in the US Army, during which I twice deployed to Iraq. We as a country have decided that merits special treatment in certain circumstances. Some businesses provide discounts. Every Veterans Day I even get free meals. And my local supermarket has designated parking space for veterans.

But in a democracy, my military service gets me the same one vote as everyone else.

Continue reading

Starbucks shows there’s no way to escape Social Justice Warriors

Starbucks is a proudly progressive company. 90% of Starbucks’ political donations go to Democrats, according to opensecrets.org. A few years ago, the coffee giant urged its employees to start conversations about race with customers until they realized customers just wanted, you know, coffee. More recently, Starbucks has committed to hiring 10,000 refugees by 2022.

None of that prevented Starbucks from being lambasted as racist and boycotted for a single incident before all the facts were even known.

Continue reading

U.S. and Allies bomb Syria. Good. What’s next?

Last night, President Trump announced joint air strikes with Britain and France against Syrian dictator Bashar Assad in response to his repeated use of chemical weapons against Syrian rebels and civilians. This is an important step for American national security and the world order we helped establish, but it is only a start. The real test comes next.

Continue reading