Freedom of Assembly

Remember that neo-Nazis too are guaranteed freedom of speech and assembly in a liberal democracy.   It only breaks down when they are responsible for hate speech against any other group (Blacks or Jews) and/or inciting violence.   Remember that they marched in Skokie, Ill, and the official Jewish Community recognized their right to march.  I well remember in the 1970’s when the neo-Nazis came from their HQ in Virginia to march in Washington DC.  As long as they had a permit they were protected (ironically) by the predominately Black police force.  But, if they infringed the regulations, they were quickly shut down and dispersed.

Once they planned to disrupt a Jewish Community Council march in support of Israel (how did we find out, that’s a secret) of which I was the organizer.  I arranged for a group of activist Jewish students from the local campuses to be present to provide protection. But, these were not just passive guards, they were trained, some of them had black belts and one was an expert with a nun-chuk (a fiendish weapon).  When the neo-Nazis showed up our guards attacked them and forced them to withdraw, meanwhile others had been assigned to slash their tires.  When they raced back to their cars they could not escape, they were beaten soundly and never came back.  You might ask where were the police during this ruckus, they just stood back and watched.

While I admit there is a fine line between a defensive reaction and an offensive attack, there is a difference.  The removal of the statue of Gen. Robert E. Lee was initiated by the left and the Blacks. When the KKK, neo-Nazis and White Supremacists marched in Charlottesville against that removal of the Lee statue they were attacked by the organized hard-left antifa trained cadres.  The liberal-left biased media tend to ignore this fact, but I agree with Pres. Trump, both extremes deserve censure.

Note that the antifa, the hard-left vigilantes, do not simply fight the fascists, their aim is to take over the government, destroy capitalism and democracy and bring in a socialist regime that resembles the former Soviet Union (an abject failure) and Venezuela (that has just become a dictatorship of the Party and its Secty. Gen.)  To ignore the role of these leftist thugs in the current situation and to romanticize it is a failure of realism that could have significant consequences.  There are many good people in Virginia who are not extremists, who are not racists, who would like to see the statue of Gen. Robert E. Lee left alone and who demonstrated peacefully.  These people will continue to support Pres. Trump.

Advertisements

Tearing down statues

After the defeat of Communism in the Soviet Union almost all statues of Lenin, Stalin and similar pro-communist monuments were torn down.  I well remember arguing with our guide (no doubt a KGB agent) when we were being shown around Novosibirsk in 1989, just after perestroika was introduced by Gorbachev.  She proudly showed us the huge monumental statues of workers and peasants standing outside the train station in the center of the city.  Everyone admired them, but I said they were ugly manifestations of communist realism and they would be torn down one day.   She was shocked, but I was right.  In Moscow and other cities in Eastern Europe some of the statues were relocated to a park outside the city where they can still be viewed if someone wants to see them.

We shouldn’t forget the tearing down of the statues of Saddam Hussein when the US defeated his army in Iraq, and those of countless other dictators (Mussolini, Ceacescu, Idi Amin, and so on).  But the situation in the US is different.  The civil war between North and South is still a wound in the body politic of the USA.  I was surprised to find that many of the statues of Southern leaders were erected comparatively recently, mainly as a reaction against the civil rights movement.  But, statues are convenient symbols and I totally oppose groups of vigilantes pulling down statues by their own decisions.

It may be that statues of Confederate soldiers are inappropriate, for example in Baltimore.  But, I lived in Maryland, and Maryland was a divided border state during the Civil War.  Baltimore was pro-Northern and the hinterland was pro-Southern.  Rockville, Maryland, which was a small town during the civil war, was the closest that Confederate forces came to the capital, Washington DC.  They occupied Rockville in 1863 and were then driven out by Union forces.  There is a statue of a Confederate soldier standing near the court-house in Rockville to commemorate this event.  It would be unfortunate if a crowd gathered and tore down this statue.  Be careful when you start taking the law into your own hands and tearing down symbols that you don’t like.  Others too can play that game, and then where are you?

We don’t want to see statues of George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, not to mention other historical figures, pulled down unilaterally because they were slave-owners, capitalists, or merely objectionable.

 

 

A Pox on Both Their Houses

I am, of course, against the KKK, the white supremacists, and especially the neo-Nazis. But, I am not bothered by the statue of Gen. Robert E. Lee remaining in the square in Charlottesville, Va.  He was an excellent general, an important historical figure in the history of the United States, and he came from Virginia.  He was offered to be the Commander-in-Chief of the US Federal army (yes, of the North), but he turned it down to become the C-in-C of the Confederate Army of Virginia.  Like all Southerners of his time he supported slavery.  But, as Pres. Trump noted in his press conference today, so did George Washington and Thomas Jefferson.  They were both slave owners.  As he asked “where will it stop, if we take down the statues of all Confederate generals, shall we also take down the statues of all slave owners, including Washington and Jefferson?”  I think not!

I am also, of course, against the organized militant hard left activists, known as the “antifa” who dressed in combat gear (black body protectors and helmets) came to the rally in Charlottesville looking for trouble.  But, the biased liberal-left media failed to report their activities.  Here again I agree with Pres. Trump, extremists on both sides who came to foment violence and destruction must both be condemned.  It is ridiculous for any reporter to take the high moral ground and disparage Pres. Trump for criticizing both sides, it does not mean that he “equates” them.  They both deserve to be condemned. And Pres. Trump is right again when he says that there were many protesters who came to demonstrate peacefully against the removal of the statue of Robert E. Lee.

The US will be the poorer if the statues of all early historical figures whose politics and views are not consistent with those of the left and the Black population today are unilaterally removed.  This is politically correct racial politics at its worst.  I protest this trend, to quote William Shakespeare in “Romeo and Juliet” I say “a pox on both their houses.”

 

Arrest the Leakers

Within days of Pres. Trump speaking confidentially on the phone with the leaders of Australia and Mexico, transcripts of the calls were published in the Washington Post.  Who does this help, only the enemies of the United States.  Why on earth would any self-respecting American in a position of responsibility in the White House leak such confidential and damaging information.  How can we expect any foreign leader to speak frankly with the President of the USA if they except to see their words in the newspaper a few days later.

This has to stop, and AG Sessions laid out the case in his statement today.  Already four government employees have been charged with crimes for leaking classified and confidential information.  I know that leaking is a way of life in Washington, and that some leaks, such as the co-called Pentagon Papers that showed that the Nixon Administration had been lying to the American people about the Vietnam War, and the more recent cases of Wikileaks, have done some good.  Clearly some people will resort to leaking information if they feel that it is against their basic principles.  But, now it has got out of hand, almost everything is being leaked, if only to tarnish the reputation of Pres. Trump.  Maybe it is Obama hold-overs and maybe not, but it has to be stopped.

Some of you may have seen the movie “Snowden” about the leaking of the huge number of documents showing that the US under the Obama Administration was analyzing US communication traffic (although not the actual content) to obtain security information and lying about it.  The movie was directed by Oliver Stone, a well-known leftist with anti-government opinions.  But, whatever the supposed principled opinions of Snowden, he broke his contract with his employer, the US government, when he revealed classified information, and he deserves to pay for it.  There is nothing different between Edward Snowden and any other spy, such as Jay Pollard and Aldrich Ames.  If he felt he must take this step he must pay the price.  Leakers must be arrested, charged and serve time.  Even those that leaked information about Hillary Clinton.

 

US Immigration policy

I was an immigrant to the USA, but I was that rare person, I was a legal immigrant. There are believed to be approximately 12 million illegal immigrants in the USA now, but that’s probably an underestimate.  As a legal immigrant, who went through the whole process of providing the necessary documentation, waiting my turn and then after 5 years in the USA taking the test and becoming a US citizen, I greatly resent all those illegal immigrants who avoided all the legal requirements.  It is clear to me that illegal immigration must be stopped and in that I agree with Pres. Trump.

The left are quite unconsciously locked in a contradictory argument.  They want to protect the illegal immigrants, give them legal status, let them reside unmolested in sanctuary cities.  Yet almost all of these illegals are entirely unqualified for any job other than unskilled and menial labour.  But, at the same time these liberals want to raise the minimum wage and help  lower class Americans to get jobs.  But the illegals compete with US citizens for  fewer and fewer unskilled manual jobs.  This leads to un-employment and greater costs to the middle class to support all the Americans on welfare.  Wouldn’t it make more sense to try to stop the illegal immigration by spending money on improved security (“The Wall”) and deport more illegals and give lower class Americans more chances to find jobs.  At the same time, the influx of drugs and Mexican drug cartels into the US should also be fought.

But, the recent statement of Pres. Trump addresses legal immigration, preferring skilled workers to unskilled.  This has been the requirement of immigration law in the US for a long time, it’s not new.  I was asked to write letters to support the immigration and citizenship of foreign workers and I had to emphasize that they were highly skilled and would be an asset to the USA.  I agree that this should be the focus of all immigration law, since there are fewer and fewer unskilled jobs and those that there are should be available to American workers, not a permanent unskilled foreign (mostly Mexican) underclass.

I saw the hostile exchange between Stephen Miller representing the Trump Administration and Jim Acosta of CNN in the White House press room yesterday.  It was highly partisan.  Why is CNN and the media in general representing the left in this argument, rather than seeking to find the truth and reporting it.  We want to know what the Administration is saying , not have it filtered by hostile opponents.  But, that aside, quoting the poem on the statue of liberty as an example of US immigration policy is ridiculous leftist nonsense.  It has not been followed for most of American history, certainly not since the exclusion of Jews from the late 1920’s onwards.  I as one who went through the legal process to immigrate to the USA in the 1960’s, can attest to the fact that it bears no resemblance to Emma Lazarus’ emotive poem.

 

The White House Mess

Some readers seem to think that I am a die-hard Trump supporter.  Although I agree with much that Trump has formulated as his policies, on healthcare, immigration and jobs, nevertheless I made clear at the outset that there were three or more Republican candidates for President that I would have preferred over Trump.  Nevertheless, through his clever use of social media and direct communication with the American people, Trump won both the Republican nomination and defeated Hillary Clinton.  It behooves us to take such a winner seriously.  I also think that many people make a mistake when they equate intelligence with leadership qualities.  I have little doubt that most of my readers are more intelligent that Pres. Trump.  But, he’s the one who took the difficult path and won the race, and is now the leader.

However, Trump has had great difficulty in organizing an effective White House Staff. He fired his former spokesman (Sean Spicer), his former Chief of Staff (Reince Priebus) and his Communications Director (Anthony Scaramucci) in just over 10 days. This indicates a degree of chaos in the White House.  He tried a friend, Scaramucci, but it just didn’t work out.  Now he has brought in Gen.  John F. Kelly, whose first action was to fire Scaramucci.  It seems from the press briefings that Kelly is now in charge of all communications in the White House with the President, and the fluid situation with friends and relatives flowing in and out is now over.   Hopefully order will replace chaos and this will help Trump’s legislative plans.

The fact that Scaramucci lasted only 10 days, after he gave an expletive-laced interview to a reporter, is not bad news but good news.  Trump made a mistake and quickly reversed it.  That is being decisive, and now he has a strong ex-military Chief of Staff who hopefully will put the White House in good order.   It can only go up from here.

Focus on Real Issues

I agree with the majority of the American people, who cares about the so-called “Russia collusion” investigations, they are unimportant and will lead nowhere.  They are merely a device by the Democrats that demonstrate how desperate they are that they lost the election, and can’t get over it.  Trump was elected fair and square, its old news. Russians may have interfered in the election but there is no evidence whatsoever that they in any way did so with collusion from the Trump campaign.

There have been any number of hearings, Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner testified, and the Committee even dropped the need for former Trump Campaign Head Paul Manafort and Trumps’s son to give evidence.  Why? because there was no basis for an investigation.  The American people are tired of this “get Trump at any cost” mentality, and it is indeed costing both in time and money.  What they want is for the Congress to do the business of the people that is necessary, to finally come to terms with the real issues, of health care, tax reform and infrastructure repair.  This is what Pres. Trump has been saying, to both Democrats and Republicans alike.

What is the real news that is being overlooked by the biased liberal news media: 1. The Dow industrial index has continuously risen from less than 20,000 when Trump was elected to over 26,000 now.  That rise in the US stock market is an incredible indicator of the strength of the US economy; 2. The top 5 technology companies in the US (Apple, Google, Microsoft, Yahoo and Alphabet) have added 3 trillion dollars to their worth in the past few months and now spend more on R&D than the US Government;  3. As Trump promised, ISIS is being defeated with US help, in Mosul and Raqqa; 4. After incredible opposition from Congress, the Trump promise to repeal Obamacare finally has been stopped due to Republican resistance.  So stop the show trials and get to the real business of government.