Friday, October 7, 2016

Election 2016: Forget the Lies. It’s About the Issues

What is this election about? The New Jersey Star-Ledger editorialized Clinton's lies vs. Trump's lies: separate and unequal. A whole editorial about who is the least egregious liar. You can read it if you want. I left these comments, edited and expanded for clarity:

Both Clinton and Trump are liars? Yawn! This is old news. It’s non-essential. What I focus on is the party platforms. From a pro-liberty, pro-American principles perspective, the Democrats are immeasurably more destructive. The worst of the Democrats’ policies are:

    • The Democrats have been captured by anti-industrial environmentalists who value unaltered nature over maximizing human well-being. They will double down on their war on reliable, economical energy, in the form of policies aimed at forcing Americans into 50% unreliable “green” energy  within 10 years and elimination of fossil fuels by 2050.

    • They have also been captured by radical neo-communist egalitarians who value economic equality over individual rights, political equality, and economic progress. They will accelerate their war on individual human diversity and achievement, in the form of a demagogic anti-economic inequality crusade that appeals to the basest of human emotions—greed and envy.

    • They will continue their war against free speech and intellectual freedom—the First Amendment—in the form of endorsing a constitutional amendment to repeal Citizens United, thus giving the political class the power to control political speech.

    • They will continue their drive to hollow out the Second Amendment, thus undermining the individual right to self-defense. They will use the legitimate issue of “gun control” to so heavily regulate gun ownership as to effectively ban guns just as racists have used the legitimate issue of “voter ID” to restrict the racial minority vote.

    • They will add a dangerous new dimension to their war on free speech and intellectual freedom, in the form of federalizing the Democrat-led AGs United for Clean Power,” which is pursuing a prosecutorial assault on ExxonMobil and numerous intellectual institutions, under cover of “fraud,”  for dissenting from the Left’s climate catastrophist dogma. This blatantly fascist “inquisition” is more attuned to a Castro or Mussolini regime than to a major American political party.

    • Dovetailing with the Democrats’ war on intellectual freedom is the Obama Administration’s assault on private colleges, in particular for-profit colleges. The government’s regulatory apparatus coupled with the government’s virtual takeover of student loans is increasing federal control of higher education, a key goal of the political powerluster.

    • Their deliberate mis-identification of the causes of the 2008-09 financial crisis and Great Recession—blaming private business rather than government “affordable housing” crusades—for the purpose of rationalizing the massive regulatory expansion over the economy generally and finance in particular. This is consistent with the Democrats’ unrelenting power-lust that drives them, under cover of their slogans of counterfeit compassion, to ceaselessly expand the federal regulatory tyranny.

    • The Benghazi atrocity, Hillary’s email scandal, and Obama’s absurd claim that climate change is America’s greatest national security threat are all indications that the Democrats simply don’t take national security seriously.

    • Add to this horrific litany the Democrats’ generally insatiable appetite for taxing away earned wealth to create new and ever-broader handouts. The Democrats’ idea of “helping” the middle class is to turn it from self-sufficiency into a welfare class—funded, of course, by money seized from, you guessed it, middle class (i.e., productive) Americans.

    • Finally, and in the long term most importantly, there is the issue of Supreme Court nominees. “Liberals,” or so-called “Progressives,” believe the U.S. Constitution is a “living constitution”—that is, a hollow document devoid of any supporting philosophical principles such as inalienable individual rights or division of governmental powers. Hillary and the Democrats, if given the chance, will install liberal/progressive judges. What will this mean? The great achievement of the United States of America is to check government power over the individual, limiting government at all levels to the protection of individual rights—rights defined as guarantees to freedom of action (the pursuit of happiness], not an automatic claim on material benefits that others must be forced to provide [e.g. “free” college or taxpayer-provided health care]). Liberal/progressive judges—that is, Leftist judges—believe that the constitution, being devoid of principles, can be interpreted any way that fits current politics. Being statists, a Left-dominated Supreme Court would essentially neuter the constitution: Such would be the final nail in the coffin for individual rights and limited government.

True, the Republicans are wedded to the authoritarian social agenda of the religious conservatives. But the GOP’s social authoritarianism is not the main threat to America today. Clearly, the Democratic Party has gone way beyond the “social safety net” Old Left agenda. The Democrats burgeoning economic authoritarianism, coupled now with a war on free speech and its newly emerging fascist impulse, is the most urgent threat. The Republicans are nowhere near as authoritarian, on balance.

Clinton and Trump are both liars. So what? There are much more important issues than who is the worst liar. It is those issues I will focus on. So, here’s where I stand at this time:

Both Trump and Clinton have strong authoritarian impulses, and neither have much respect for Americanism or the U.S. Constitution or the Declaration of Independence. Both can lead the country in the wrong direction. In essence, the choice is between two Democrats. But here’s the difference: Clinton is very much wedded ideologically to the statist Left, and can be counted on to advance its agenda. Trump, on the other hand, has no ideological leanings; in fact, very little in the way of intellectual coherence. He’s a buffoonish loose cannon. But by that very fact there is much more of a chance he can be influenced toward pro-liberty, pro-constitutional policies than Clinton.

At this point, I’m leaning toward a bad quasi-Democrat choice—Donald Trump—in order to keep out a catastrophic Democrat choice—Hillary Clinton. But whatever my presidential choice, I’ll be voting straight Republican down-ballot in hopes of blunting some of the Democrats’ dehumanizing collectivism/statism.

Related Reading:

The Democrat Party Platform Committee’s Call to ‘Investigate’ Climate Dissenters is Undisguised Fascism

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