Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Band of Brothers No More?

Take a good look. The three freshmen senators, all of whom
think they could be the next president of the United States.
On Friday, in the early hours of the morning, when all normal people were in their beds or in bars, the senate was voting on the budget. The Republicans in the senate passed their budget, and the Republicans in the House passed theirs. And in the coming days they will be meeting to try to get the two things together, so that they can send a budget to the president.

 But the story of the present is three freshmen senators who were there that morning. Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz and Rand Paul. All are part of a political party that does not actually exist, except in ideology. The Tea Party, and all are on the far right, and might be running for president in the coming months. Cruz has already announced he is, and is off and running. Paul has a special announcement on the 7th of next month, and it is a pretty sure bet he will be announcing a presidential bid. And Rubio is “still thinking about it.” He has an announcement on the 13th, himself. In his book American Son, he mentions more than once that his wife does want him to be in politics forever, and this could be the reason he had not made anything final yet.

 But these three, who seem to agree with each other on most issues, if not how to tackle immigration and how much money to give defense, have always seemed to work well together, or at least, “done no harm” and, although they will willingly rip apart just about anybody anywhere at any time, they don’t usually rip each other’s faces off.

 But with the presidential campaign coming up, this could change, drastically. In Republican Primaries, (make that just about any primary, even primary school) things get nasty. Sometimes out of desperation to win, sometimes out of a feeling your opponent is evil, sometimes out of almost petty slight, mud is slung, names destroyed, attacks ads aired, and war breaks loose across the party.

And here is the thing: Of these three, assuming all do end up running, only one, or possibly none of them, will be president come election night, and the losers will have to go back to the senate and work with the one that is, or work with each other with someone else who becomes president.
And during the budget battles, this was on display, just a little bit, with Paul and Rubio both putting up amendments to the budget, and each voting against the others one’s. Both amendments failed, but Cruz backed Rubio.

 Paul attacked those who didn’t vote with him, including of course, Rubio and Cruz, saying they had been “reckless” and “irresponsible,” saying they “courage” and conviction to lower the deficit and debt. He ended with saying there are two groups in the Republican party, those who care about lowering the debt, (presumably himself) and those who don’t.

 Paul, Cruz, and Rubio need to be careful. Very, very careful. Of course they have to debate, they have to speak their minds, they have to say what they think on the campaign trail, and let the issues out, but they can’t become enemies. They cannot come out of the elections hating each other with a passion, and unable to work together. If they do, they’re sunk, the three titans of the Tea Party and the far right are dead in the water, and like a scattered navy of old, when the ships of the line were separated, they were picked off by the enemy, one by single one.

Andrew C. Abbott

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Losing hold on sanity

State Senator Ernie Chambers is the type of fellow the phrase “one small fry short of a happy meal” was invented for, or any of the others phrase you please to designate someone as having an elevator that doesn’t go to the top level-basically, as being nuts.

This 77 year old state senator from Omaha Nebraska said just recently that if he had a gun, he might shoot a cop. He went on to say that members of the police are like members of ISIS. As if all those remarks, which he refuses to apologize for, and has been duly condemned by his fellow legislatures for, who have asked him to resign, were not bad enough, he followed it up by saying the police are a threat to free speech.
Now, the constitution protects free speech, even disgusting forms of it, such as this, and bad old Ernie has automatic protection anyway for things he says on the floor of the legislature. But this man seems to have forgotten one little thing about the freedom to say he wants to kill cops, and that is that the only reason he has the right to say that is because of the cops, who keep people like him who do have a gun from overrunning the rest of us.
The very people he seems to want to shoot are the very reason he has the right to say he wants to do it. Today, if you are enjoying being safe, thank a cop.

Andrew C. Abbott

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Palestine: Blowing up

He is a guy you’ve probably never heard of; Dr. Riyad Mansour, Permanent Observer of Palestine to the U.N. He was on NBC’s Meet the Press with Chuck Todd on Sunday, for an interview. Recently Palestine, or rather the lack of the existence of Palestine, has been in the news, with the comments by Netanyahu, about the fact that he may not be behind a two state solution there.

The idea of a two state solution in the Israel Region, with one being for Jews, the other for Arabs, is a sticky situation. Americans are, according to Gallup earlier this year, pretty evenly split about it. Obama supports it, as do many others, but there are fears that it could become a Terror State if allowed to exist.
And this brings us to Dr. Riyad Mansour. Who, on Meet the Press proved why so many are concerned about giving people like him a state of their own. When Chuck Todd asked this man who is the permanent observer to the UN of the state that does not yet exist him why he was not pushing forward talks with Israel and America, but rather going to the International Criminal Court, and possibly after that the UN, to get what he wants, Mansour had this to say: “Listen, you know, people should appreciate what we are doing, we are refusing to seek violent ways to try to resolve this conflict.”
Completely unbelievable. We should respect the fact that he’s not blowing people up.
No, that is not how society works. Normal people don’t blow people up. I have never heard yet, in Western Culture, someone lauded because they don’t blow people up. “You know, that guy sure is a bad football player, but at least he doesn’t blow people up.” Or, “you really should marry him, honey, I know he can’t hold a job, can’t do anything, but at least he is not blowing people up.”
It is such a simple thing, such a basic thing, and somehow we are supposed to think that they have made a great accomplishment. “You know man, I don’t like that news anchor, but at least he finally learned how to speak, when he was in his 20s he was still all goo, goo gaga.”
This is almost a sort of inferiority complex from this man, that thinks his region has sunk so low, when they are not killing people, it deserves a party. A two state solution will probably be reached in years to come, although of course it will be very difficult. But no matter which side of this you are on, we can all agree that people like Dr. Riyad Mansour only make things worse. He is not helping anything. I am glad he is not blowing people up, but I’m glad like a mother is glad her high school graduate knows how to dress himself, we kind of expect it, and it doesn’t mean you’re a grown up now.
Until we can not only expect nonviolent solution coming from the Middle East, but can also expect that Arab and European can sit down and talk things out like European and European Nations talk things out, we have a long way to go. “The battle isn’t won yet, Mr. Frodo.”

Andrew C. Abbott

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Hobos: The Knights of the Road

Hopping the train.

Today, most people who have a business card, as I do, which says they keep a blog on politics are probably planning on writing about Ted Cruz, the man who just announced he is running for president. Or maybe about Rand Paul, the man who is about to announce. Or perhaps they are writing about Iran and its coming atomic bomb, or maybe take another look at Hillary Clinton. But not today, we’ll save Cruz and the politics for later. The story today is about a man named Chuck.

I met him yesterday, and he is a man well into his old age. And somehow he started talking about Hobos, the men who started jumping trains during the Great Depression.
The Hobos have a storied history. They were men out of work at a time when it wasn’t possible to find it, and so the only they could do was hop an illegal ride on freight train boxcars to a city that might have work. Some cities might have it, others might not, and some might have it for a while, but often, they ended up keeping on going.
Riding the train, hopefully to a job
On the places that they stopped, they would knock on doors, “work for a meal, ma’am?” Of course some people were kinder than others. Some had work, some just had angry words. And so, if they were not wanted, the Hobos would put a certain mark by the house which said to their fellow brothers “don’t stop here.” And on the house that had work and food, there was another mark, the “stop here” sign.
In Chuck’s town, the cars came in on Friday, and left on Monday, so the Hobos were there for a couple of days, and his home had the “Stop here” sign. The Hobos would come, his father would have them mow the lawn, clean up the alley way, whatever, and give them what he could. That is, until he died. When he did, knocking on the door was a small army of men, down on their luck with ragged hats, come to pay their respects to the man who had been kind to them. And they came much more often after that, to see if Chuck’s widowed mother needed anything done.
For a long time they had just been an oddity, Chuck told me, people who visited his house. But then, as he became an older teenager, and things didn’t improve, and he got bored in town, he started hopping boxcars himself. He had a problem though; his uncle was a Railroad Detective, the man who was supposed to keep the boxcars free of people. But he also had a solution-without telling his uncle he was turning Hobo, he asked him at what times the Detectives did their sweeps, and so he knew when to jump the cars and hide, to stay out of a night in jail for vagrancy and trespassing.
Chuck, unlike many, was never caught. And today he has lived a good life, has a home, and it’s been decades since he jumped a car, of course.
But since this is a political blog, I have a thought about these hard working, industries men, and how they were always willing to work, and get the job done. And to solve their problems. Maybe we should elect some men like them to congress. Anyway, they were gentlemen, or at least tried to be, with their own rules of conduct. They even called themselves the Knights of the Road.

Andrew C. Abbott 

Saturday, March 21, 2015

When Congress Runs Smoothly

One in, one out. Loretta Lynch, the incoming,
and Eric Holder, the outgoing, Attorneys General
This morning, in his Weekly Address, the President complained that congress is not running smoothly.
Loretta Lynch, his nominee to be the next Attorney General,  the president says, should be allowed a confirmation vote by the Republican controlled Senate. Lynch would replace Eric Holder, the scandal ridden Attorney General, who has resigned effective upon the office being filled by a new appointee. Holder has been held in contempt of congress for previous mistakes.

Mrs. Lynch would be the first black woman to be made Attorney General of the United States, and has a long and distinguished history as a prosecutor. So it could be understandable why some would think that she should not, as is now the case, have been waiting for confirmation to her position longer than the last five appointees combined.
Democrats are outraged, or at least say they are, by this turn of events. With Senator Dick Durbin Illinois saying that Republicans are asking Lynch to go to the back of the bus, as if she were Rosa Parks. The President says this is all the Republicans fault, and that they are not making congress run smoothly.
And the President is right, if by running smoothly he means congress rubber stamps everything he wants done. But he is wrong if by running smoothly congress is supposed to stand by its campaign promises, represent the American people and protect them.
Dick Durbin, the Democratic Senator who has done a lot of important work in
the past, but is embarrassing himself over race comments; former presidential
candidate and current Senator John McCain has asked him to apologize
And one of the groups of people that congress is supposed to protect, one of the groups that this Republican Congress won the senate on last year with their platform being prolife, is the unborn.
Mitch McConnell, the head of Republican Senators, has promised Lynch will get her vote, and that he will even vote for her and have his senators vote for her, but first, the Democrats have to do their bit. And that bit is to pass a little 68 page bill that would come down even harder on human traffickers then we already do. The Democrats support the bill, except for something in it which will not allow money collected under it to fund most abortions. So they won’t pass it.
Perhaps Lynch will make a good Attorney General, certainly her record is very good. But in congress, there are thing we call deals, things we call bargaining, in other words, what serious senators call governing, that thing they were sent to Washington by the people to do.
Somehow though, Dick Durbin and others don’t get that. This is a deal that is not too hard to make, it’s not complicated, especially for all these well educated people. Democrats don’t filibuster a bill hurting human traffickers, maybe even vote for it, although they don’t even need to be that radical, although they probably should, and the Republicans will not only not block Loretta Lynch’s nomination, they will even vote for her!
The way government is supposed to run is on a checks and balance system, with congress not having too much power, and the president not having too much power. So congress is running smoothly, at least the Republicans are making it run as smoothly as they can with Lynch, with their proposed deal.
The Republicans are not making Loretta Lynch go to the back of the bus. This has nothing to do with race, and everything to do with protecting the lives of the unborn. It is the Democrats in the senate who are, at the moment, fouling things up, just like they did with the DHS shutdown a few weeks ago. Instead of complaining, and playing the blame game, they should get on the ball, and stop blocking the bill. Then congress would run smoothly again.

Andrew C. Abbott

Thursday, March 19, 2015

The President was wrong...again

Yesterday in Cleveland, Barak Obama was speaking to a civic group, and he had a suggestion which he admitted would be hard to implement, but would be “fun” to try. The President’s big idea? Make voting mandatory, presumably for all people over 18 in good health and sound of mind.
This is not the first time this idea of making everyone for someone, even if its themselves, every election unless they can prove they were dying of cancer or something, has come into the public debate in recent years. The president reminded everyone that the people who usually do not vote in politics are the mainly the minorities, the less educated, in fact, the overall less privileged, who tend historically to vote more Democratic. And of course, it would be harder for a few men like the Koch brothers or George Soros to buy an election if everybody voted.
And the president is right, voter turnout is a problem, in last year’s midterm elections, just around 36% of Americans voted. And in 2012 when we were electing the President of the United States, over 40% of American citizens who could have did not exercise their right to vote. So it is understandable why our president would want more people to exercise their constitutional right to vote.
However, the president’s remedy is wrong. The president says there should be a law, but the facts are against him. Exhibition one: Amendment One to the United States Constitution:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
The first two parts of that amendment are all that is needed to debunk the president’s well-meaning but wrong solution to the voter turnout problem.
Firstly: There are those whose religion forbids them from voting. Just last year I ran into a group of them, called Hutterites, in Minnesota. These well educated, good, upstanding citizens, aside from clothes many would see as old fashioned, were in every respect like just about everybody else, except for some deeply held and sincere religious beliefs, one of which was that they should not vote in governmental elections. What happens to these people? Are they to be fined, are they thrown in jail because of their beliefs? I am sure these sort of people did not cross the president’s mind when he made his statement, he may have never heard of them, but the fact remains, this would inhibit free exercise of more than one religion.
Secondly: And also free speech. There are some who use form of free speech we may not disagree with, some we may even find terrible and in extremely bad taste, not to say unpatriotic, such as burning the flag, but it is legal, because it is a form of free speech, and the constitution says we cannot abolish it.

And so too is not voting. If a person or group of people want to boycott an election to make a statement, if they want to boycott all elections, that is their right, it is their privilege, not to vote. And there is nothing we can do about that.
The president was well meaning here, but wrong, again.

Andrew C. Abbott

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

My Run In with the Labor Lobby

The panel
Terre Haute, Indiana -My mother likes to visit libraries, and, I found out recently, library websites. On one of them, she discovered a notice that at one particular library here in Indiana, there was going to be a “Cracker Barrel Session” where you sit around and ask state congressmen questions. I was expecting a quiet, almost sleepy little session which no one, including the congressmen, were overly interested in. I was wrong.
When we arrived, underneath a tent outside, a Democratic State Senator was screaming about how our Governor Mike Pence, a man who is widely popular here, and about whom some are whispering for the presidency, was shutting down public schools. (He’s not; he’s simply allowing people to go to the school of their choice, or homeschool.) It seems the teachers association, along with the labor unions, had gathered together to do their best to annoy the four Republican congressmen who were there for the session, and cheer for the two Democrats. The story made the news.
I got inside past the signs and screaming, and secured a second row seat to the drama.
Recently, in a story that is even making national news, Governor Pence decided that the only Democrat who was elected in the statewide elections last year was making a mess of things in the department of education, and a lot of people agree. A bill is passing through the state legislature in Indianapolis to lessen her hold on power.
But the teacher’s didn’t like that…at all. And as for the unions? Unions have done a great deal of good in the history of this country, procuring the eight hour work day down form ten hours and in some places even twelve. But these union members apparently wanted everyone in the state in the unions, whether they wanted to be or not.
The moderator from the beginning was unable to keep peace. (She was a woman probably in her seventies, and could not talk over the yelling.) As one congressman came in, the crowd began jeering and booing. It got worse. Screaming, catcalling, yelling, and asking State Congressman Morrison if he had a guilty conscience; Morrison shot back that it was real brave for the man who had said that to then walk away without waiting for a reply.
One teacher came up and began to complain that most teachers in Indiana only make about 49,000 dollars a year. According to Census.gov, that is the average median income in America for a family of 2, for any job.
It was an interesting glimpse for me into the distortion of the facts by these activists. And their inability to be quiet when others were talking. At one point the moderator threatened to have the police men who were around to remove the loud mouths. She never did.
People who were given the microphone were told to hold their comments, (it was supposed to be questions, they were mostly comments) to 3 minutes. But when told to stop, they would just keep going.
The screaming was constant, when the Representatives tried to speak, they were forced to stop and wait for the room to reach some sort of calm. Some “commenters” from the floor, when they had the microphone even tried to tell them when they could speak and when they couldn’t.
At the end of the session, the panel of legislatures (the two Democrats, every time they spoke, which was rarely, were wildly applauded,) was allowed to give closing remarks. This ignited choruses of screams from the audience, and a young man went to the microphone, trying to take over the meeting, saying the people should have their say, not the legislatures, the crowd yelped that they wanted to hear him speak, not the congressmen.
The moderator held fast for once, and told him no. He still stood there. She told him no again, and he tried to start speaking. Finally she told him no one more time-the congressmen could speak, not him. Curse words flew from the audience, and suddenly well over a hundred teachers and union members got up and walked out with the young man, (he was a member of neither group) to hear what he had to say.
It turns out, (I collared him later to ask) what he had wanted to talk about all along was that the teachers were saying they cared so much about children, (and I believe almost of all of them do, and deeply) but many of them also back abortion, which kills children. When he started his talk outside, the small crowd that had gathered from the walkout ran for their cars.
But what was the outcome of all of this screaming? Nothing, not a single blessed thing. Most of the people in that room were Democrats, but in Indiana the Republicans control a supermajority of the legislature, and the governorship. The state for the most part supports school choice; they even support ousting the Democrat in the Department of Education.
The state is Red, and looks destined to remain that way. Most people here in Indiana would have supported the legislatures in that room, and have been appalled at the disrespect shown. But unfortunately almost none of those people were there.
The reason? They have families, and jobs, and farms, and normal lives. Most of them do not have time to hold up a sign and scream that they support something. And so their voices are not heard. And the organized minority of yellers sometimes gets their way. Not all the time. I am sure Pence will be able to pass his bill and oust the Democrat, but over time, pressure builds, as it has in this country in recent years.
And when all the legislatures see is screaming, yelling groups of people supporting left wing principles, somehow they begin to think they had better support this, or get voted out of office, and the farmer in his pickup truck soon realizes his taxes are rising to pay for someone else’s social program, programs which many times do not even work.
And so the liberals are there, and they are organized. They get out and march, they get out and vote. Let’s make sure that in our communities, when we have an opportunity, we should do the same. Always remembering of course to walk softly, and carry a big stick-and that stick should be the facts.


Andrew C. Abbott

Saturday, March 14, 2015


Republicans have had much to laugh at recently, when it was revealed that a lot of Democrats do not
actually read the bills they vote on to pass or not to pass in the senate committees.

The following is a true story.
Congress works in strange and complicated ways. (I know, that was not a news flash). Before a bill can come through the House or Senate to even be argued about on the floor, debated about, and eventually voted on, it has to go to a smaller committee, where almost everything dies. Even Barak Obama quipped last year that he proposed a toast at a party with congressmen, and it died in committee.
But this is the story of one brave little  68 page bill, which began as an idea in someone’s mind, and finally got turned into a bill, and submitted to congress, where it got sent to that torture room of the inquisition for bills, the committee. The bill was something very easy to get behind- a bill to help end human trafficking in America, something everybody from any party should support.
And, shock of all shocks, it made it  through. If that one did not give you a heart attack, here is something that might. It passed through committee with unanimous support from BOTH DEMOCRATS AND REPUBLICANS. (I know, I know.)
With such support, it seemed as if the tale was destined to end. The bill was going to pass. The credits were going to roll and the music was going to play, we had reached the last page and saw the words “THE END.” Oh but wait, like in a Captain America movie, with the extra scene,  or just as we are about to get up from our theatre seat before Ferris Bueller yells at us, another scene comes on-and Harry Reid, head of Senate Democrats, with a message-in what he called the most unusual circumstance he can possibly recall, somehow the Republicans had managed to put in the bill that the money that was going to be collected in fines from the traffickers could not be used to fund abortions unless in case of rape, incest, or if the birth of the child endangered the life of the mother.
And so, in an unbelievable turn of events, because a bunch of Democrats were too busy doing other things rather than govern, so they didn’t have time to read the bill-the trafficking bill will probably be scuttled.
And the Democrats are going to blame the Republicans for not telling them what was in a bill that part of their job description is that they would read. The case is unbelievable, and leaves us remembering this simple fact-if the Democrats wanted to be consistent in their protection of minors from trafficking, endangerment and death, they should pass this bill and others like, to outlaw one of the worst crimes our modern society allows-killing a child because it is inconvenient for it to live.
This turn of events is, as even the Huffington Post said, laughable. Unbelievable, in fact. These senators were elected to do a job, and if they want to do it right they should do what any fifth grader is taught to do...your homework. Read the bill. Maybe the Democrats should go on air and say what you have to say after you inevitably lose the hit TV Show, “I am not smarter than a fifth grader.” And then they need to go to the blackboard, and write it out a thousand times.

Andrew C. Abbott


Thursday, March 12, 2015

If Hillary wants to be president, she will have to learn to live an inconvenient life

"Because only Hillary Clinton controls her personal email account and admitted she deleted many of her emails, no one but Hillary Clinton knows if she handed over every relevant email," Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus

In 1959, John Fitzgerald Kennedy was running for President of the United States. After giving a televised speech which he knew his father had watched, he called the senior Kennedy to ask how he had done. A friend of Jack’s later recalled watching Kennedy listen to his father on the phone for about fifteen minutes before hanging up. The friend then asked Jack how he had done. He replied that he had no idea. If, while running for president, he said, in front of all the cameras, he had fallen flat on his face, “Dad would have said ‘boy the way you picked yourself up was great!’” And that is the attitude many seem to be taking towards Hillary Clinton’s most recent scandal.
It began about ten days ago when it turned out Hillary, as Secretary of State, had not had a government email account, (and thus a protected, classified account). The email account, while it apparently did not have classified information going over it, did have “sensitive information” going over it. Information that it would be much easier for foreign nations to hack because the email account was not a government one.
Hillary did not say much about it for over a week, during that time it was discovered that she not only had had a private email account, she had also decided, by herself, which documents, (she has to turn over all work related document) were indeed work related, and which she would keep. She kept more than half.
Now the shouting match has begun, some say laws were broken, some say they were not, I'm not a lawyer, I don’t know. But one thing is clear, the guidelines states she had to have a government account, and she did not. Her response at last was this: She did what she did for convenience. (Watch the video here.) Whatever is in the emails, I doubt there will be some major revelation that will suddenly force all of us to make public apologies to conspiracy theorists and tell them they were right all along.
But Hillary Clinton clearly broke guidelines she was supposed to follow, and her response is oopsey-daisey, oh well, it was more convenient that way. Although she did admit she made a mistake, she clearly has no interest in doing her best to remedy it. Even Democrats are saying she needs to allow a private arbiter to go through them. As one Republican Senator said, you don’t calling holding on yourself in football, and it is not up to her to say what is important evidence on her, and what is not.
Making a mistake as a person in public service is one thing, telling everyone it was better for her that way, she is not going to answer our questions on the rest of the emails, and so, basically, we should all just get lost, is quite another. And the response of many Democrats is that she should now run for president to stop the questions-what a response. Completely unbelievable. I can recall no parallel in history. When you make major mistakes, usually, you either don’t run for president, or you wait a while to prove to us that you are trustworthy, and won’t make the same mistake again. A presidential campaign should never be a stunt to avoid a congressional hearing.

Being president is, I hear, really inconvenient some days. You have to tell the truth even when you goof up. You have to do unpopular things, its not all just flowery beds of ease, and if Hillary Clinton ever wants to be president, she will have to learn that. 
If it is inconvenient for Hillary Clinton to follow the law now, her breaking it as president would be inconvenient for the rest of us.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

There is no college degree to be president

Much has been made in recent weeks of Scott Walker, Governor of Wisconsin, and his lack of a college degree. (He left college to join the Red Cross.) This apparently was not much of a problem before, but now that he is eyeing the presidency, such newspapers as the Washington Post, are taking it on, as well as the New York Times, although there has been some rather common sense coverage, pointing out that legally the only thing a person needs to be president of this nation is to be a naturally born citizen, have lived here for the last fourteen years, and be at least thirty-five years of age.

Scott Walker is over 35 years of age, he is a natural born American, and he has lived here for  more than the last 14 years. Oh yeah, but he doesn't have a college degree.

While it is a valid point that often times in life college degrees help, in fact they often really, really help, it is not necessary for this job, and it should be pointed out that no college in the world that I am aware of offers a degree in being president. While certain degrees could aid a president is some aspects of the job, there are so many aspects that one would have to go to college for many lifetimes to get a degree in all of them, and then, we are reminded that degree does not always equal brains. 
Besides the legal qualifications for presidency, there are quite a few others. Among them is having a good head on your shoulders, being able to be executive to the world’s greatest nation, being able to manage without interfering too much or making a mess of our economy, being involved in foreign affairs and keeping our place in the world as a respected nation, and keeping all 318,000,000+ Americans as safe as possible. And there are many more. Like I said, there is no college degree for it.
And let’s remember that in 2016, if Walker decides to run, he will be running against others who have college degrees, but some in things like physiology and medicine for Dr. Ben Carson, and Mike Huckabee, who went to Bible College to be a preacher. And even Rand Paul, who is at the top of the pack of potential candidates, is also trained as a doctor. None of these men are in any way disqualified by their degrees, and Walker certainly is not harmed because he did not finish his final semester. There are college degrees that you can get in Greek Philosophy. If Walker had got one, no one would attack him for it. But would it have helped being president? No.
If a little historical background is in order about how good a president can be without a college degree, George Washington didn’t have one either. (That is not to say Scott Walker is the next George Washington, far from it.)
In context of the American people, we have something in statistics we call a normal distribution. When you have a sample of people you are investigation, what is “normal” is described as what is true for 68% of them. How does that hold out here? Well, with our sample as the American people, 68% percent of them, exactly, do not have a college degree. So, yeah, actually, he is a normal person.
And so, really, the whole thing about college here is almost irrelevant. Maybe he will make a good candidate and good president, maybe he won’t, maybe he won’t even run. But either way, Scott Walker’s destiny, and the destiny of the American Nation, should not be hung on a piece of paper, however important in most of life, which is completely unable to show us who would make a good president, and who would not.
Andrew C. Abbott

Monday, March 2, 2015

Donald Trump would make a good president-for about 90 days

We have all heard the name. Trump Tower. Trump Card. Trump this, Trump that, and Donald Trump, the man who seems to think that if there was a Mount Rushmore of business men his would be the only face on it, the man whose board game "Trump" states on the box that "It takes brains to make millions, it takes Trump to make Billions" is again eyeing the White House.
At exactly noon on Friday Donald Trump appeared before the Conservatives for Political Action Conference, to announce, as he seemingly has every four years since Bill Clinton was the in-thing, that is considering a White House Run. But there is a catch-this time he says he is serious, telling Sean Hannity of Fox News that on a scale of 100, he was somewhere around "80."

"Trump will realize he can't fire congress."

In his speech at CPAC, and in the days around it, Self Proclaimed Brilliant Billionaire Donald Trump has decided not to renew his contract for another year of Celebrity Apprentice saying he has more important things to do, and has begun hiring staff and possibly raising funds. He has been reminding everyone about what a great negotiator he is, telling them of his exploits in getting buildings like "The Old Post Office Building" a well sought after piece of Real Estate.
Right now, we don't even know if he is running, but here is what I think about a possible candidicey. Of course, a main hurdle for most if not all candidates in the field at the moment is money. That won't be anything like a problem for Trump. According to Celebrity Net Worth, The Donald is worth 4,000,000,000 dollars, (4 billion).
But there are two ways this would effect other people in the race for the GOP Nomination. One is that Trump would be taking donors, because of course, while he could fund his own campaign, if he's smart he won't. Fundraising is a way not only to save your own money, but to prove to others that people like and are willing to give money. So he will be taking even more donors from the already diminishing donor pool. And secondly, his own money will not be going to someone else who will now be his opponent.
Of course, Donald Trump is a business man, and pundits like Howard Kurtz say it will probably not be happening. And again, when Trump toys with the presidency, his name gets out again, we all are reminded who he is, and he has a ton of fun. Which is probably what he wants, not the crushing weight of the American presidency.
But there is one thing to be said for him-despite all his faults-and that is that he is a man who does not know how not to get things done, who does not accept defeat and who doesn't get what you mean when you say "it can't be done." He is like the kind of guy, when you take a job, and you have a "no questions asked firing clause" for the first ninety days, you want him for the ninety days, but that's it.
Trump says he could close the border, build the army, and fix the problems, especially with ISIS. "I would hit them so hard and so fast that they wouldn't know what happened." And at first, he probably could. Look at Obama, a much weaker personality, how he was able to manhandle and pass the now hated Obamacare during the honeymoon.
Trump talks a lot about how he has more business experience then anyone who has ever become president. Which is true, although we are reminded the last time a billionaire ran for president, and his name was Ross Perot, the guy who lost.
But after the honeymoon phase, after everyone wakes up from the hang over from inauguration day, Trump is going to realize that it is The White House, not the Trump House. That America is not a business, he can't fire congress, although under extraordinary circumstances they can fire him.
He has always been most interested in profit, when you make more money than you spend, you are winning. But now the measuring sticks are much more complicated. Its not all about money any more, its about all sorts of things. And I think as he begins to realize that, as he must have every four years for the past decade plus, he will realize he will not want to get out of the real world of business and into gridlocked Washington.
It is not likely Trump will announce his candidacy, but if he does, it will certainly be very interesting show biz. He is unpopular with the country, but we all have to respect him. But he won't become president, certainly.
Trump's best bet is to stay where he is, doing what he is doing. And perhaps he can make a Mount Rushmore of business in some beautiful tourist spot in America, with his face on it, and maybe JP Morgan, Gates, and a couple of others. We would call it Mount Trumpmore.

Andrew C. Abbott