Faithless Elector Calls on Fellow Electors to Abandon Trump

This makes a very unlikely scenario possible

A Trump elector wrote a New York Times Op-ed today vowing to not cast a vote for Trump. Christopher Suprun is one of Trump’s 306 electors, chosen by Texas to represent the people of Texas in casting a vote for Trump on the 19th.  Despite being pledged to Trump by the voters, he has decided that he knows better than the voters who selected him. Some have estimated as many as 7 faithless electors this year who will choose an alternative to Trump.
 
This is nothing new. There have been some 157 faithless electors over the years. In 2004, an elector reportedly made an error when he wrote John Edwards rather than John Kerry. In 1872, 63 electors chose not to vote for Horace Greeley, who died after election day. In every election Nixon ran in, two wins and one loss, at least one elector defected.  
 
7 electors only represents about a sixth of the margin that put Trump over 270. Unless there is a major shift, Trump will still receive the 270 electoral votes needed to win. If there is a major shift, Congress will choose between Trump, Clinton, and anyone else who gets electoral votes.
 
The 7 electors who have so far declared that they will not choose Trump have indicated they will vote for John Kasich. Calling themselves the Hamilton Electors, if they can sway another 30 electors it could create an unprecedented situation.  Congress would then choose one of the top three candidates who received electoral votes.  It would be possible in that situation for Congress to choose John Kasich, making him the next President instead of Trump.
The chances of this happening are slim to none.  Even if enough faithless electors banded together to stop Trump, it’s highly unlikely that the Republican Party would either split their vote allowing Hillary Clinton an opening or go against the will of their own voters. Kasich’s own top adviser has poured cold water on the idea.
Faithless electors have never changed an election outcome.  29 states have laws against faithless electors, but the penalties are minimal fines and none have ever been enforced. What might make 2016 different is that Trump comes into the Presidency with historic unfavorable ratings, Christopher Suprun wrote about his dissenting vote in a New York Times Op-ed, making it very visible ahead of time, and some electors have received death threats. They have more to think about than they might in a normal election year.
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American Nationalism vs. White Nationalism

The difference between being an American Patriot and a Fascist

If you are like me, you grew up saying the national anthem, setting off 4th of July fireworks with no thought towards legality, watching Veteran’s Day and Memorial Day parades, and being proud to be an American.  I’ve stood up when the song says “I’d proudly stand up next to you”.  We’ve sung God Bless America.  We sing along to the national anthem at sporting events.  I love America.

America to me is many things.  It is apple pie, freedom to worship, respect for the military who fight and die to protect our freedoms.  It is the Bill of Rights, freedom of association, freedom to drink beer, spit, cuss, or not.  America is the freedom to call divine condemnation down upon the President, or pray for divine providence depending on how your political beliefs fall.

Nationalism is defined as patriotic feeling, principles, or efforts.  An extreme form of this is feeling of superiority over other countries.  Guess what, America is superior and I’m OK with saying that.  Our constitution is superior, our military is superior, and our people are superior.  That may be more my truth than actual fact, but I have no issue believing it.  I love America, and I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else.

Today, two groups have misidentified American Nationalism as White Nationalism.  The White Supremacists claim us as theirs, and the Globalists seek to disassociate with us. White Supremacists have long attempted to usurp Patriotism because in most countries Nationalism and supremacy go hand in hand.

I love to travel.  I’ve been to 15 countries over 5 continents.  The unique thing about America is that there is no American race.  If you go to Korea, you will find a country filled with Koreans.  Korean is different from Japanese or Chinese.  If you go to Argentina, you will find a country filled with Hispanic Argentinians.  You won’t find a large Russian population.  There are almost no blacks.  If you go to Italy, the country is filled with Italians.  That’s just how most nations work.

Much of America is different.  When I take my kids to the park, we see other mixed families like my own.  We see every continent represented, except maybe Australia and Antarctica.  But my town has an Australian presence too.  That is America.  We aren’t White Supremacists because America is not a white country.  It’s a diverse country made up of it’s citizens.

That is why I can feel comfortable identifying as an American Nationalist.  When I say our people are superior, I mean our first generation immigrants from India as much as I mean our Mayflower descendants. I also mean our African American citizens and our Hispanic citizens.  That is America, and that is what the vast majority on the right mean when they talk about Patriotism and Nationalism.

Jon Stewart got it right when he identified the Liberal hypocrisy of calling all Trump supporters racists.  Yes, there are some.  And they call themselves Nationalists which makes the whole thing very confusing for Globalists.  But they are not representative of the movement that thinks it should be OK to dislike someone for not standing for the anthem.

Kaepernick received a great deal of criticism for his anthem protest.  But it was instructive. It gave us an opportunity to separate the Nationalists from the Fascists.  Fascism is an authoritarian and nationalist system of government.  When Kaepernick refused to stand, Nationalists were split.  Some said he had the right, but was stupid for directing his anger at America in general.  Others said he had the right and it was a good protest that got attention and will hopefully make America better.  Fascists said Kaepernick should be punished, deported, or forced out of the league by the government for taking such action.

If you love America, you might be a Nationalist.  If you think your race is superior, you are a racist.  If you think your race represents your nation, you are a racist Nationalist and you might be a White Nationalist (if that happens to be your race).  If you are a racist Nationalist and think the government should enforce the supremacy of your race, you are a Fascist and could be rightly labeled as a Nazi.  If you think the government should somehow give special recognition to your race, you might be Alt-Right.  Or you could be Alt-Left.  You might be a Black Panther.  KKK aren’t the only racist “Alt” group out there.  If you think America is nothing special, you might be a Globalist or you might just be jaded.

As for me, I’m an American Nationalist.  Nothing more, nothing less.  I’m proud to be an American.  I’m proud of America.  I’m proud of the soldiers of every race, creed, and ethnicity who stormed the beaches of Normandy to fight White Supremacist Fascists.  I’m proud of the melting pot, the traditions that are not mine but belong to fellow Americans, and the freedom of conscience to worship and believe as we see fit.

I’m not blind to America’s problems.  We shouldn’t be.  We should recognize them and fix them because we love America.  If you love your house and your roof leaks, you hire a roofer.  You don’t lock your doors  and board up the windows so no one will see the leak. America isn’t perfect.  But the American Dream is that liberty and Providence leads to improvement on both a personal and national level.  America has sometimes been and continues to be downright evil in some cases. We used to own and sell people as slaves. Today we still allow the killing of the unborn. Racism is still a huge problem. These things need to be fixed. But I can and do love my imperfect country. Let’s fix it together.

I didn’t vote for Trump. I wrote in the name of a Libertarian Republican. But Trump won because of people who view America the way I do.  Not White Nationalists, not Fascists, not Alt-Right, just old fashioned Patriots.

What Makes Up 4.6% Unemployment

Why no one is cheering a return to Bush level unemployment

The last time the unemployment rate was 4.6% was August, 2007.    Bush was President and Democrats had been in control of Congress for only 8 months.  By October, 2009 unemployment had hit 10%.

However, that number has been steadily dropping since then, falling below 5% for the first time of Obama’s Presidency in January, 2016.  Today, after adding only 178,000 jobs, the rate fell to 4.6% again.  In fact, monthly job growth has been anemic for 8 years while the unemployment rate has steadily fallen.

The reason economists have been cautious is that the drop in the unemployment rate has less to do with job growth and more to do with how many have given up looking for a job. The U-6 unemployment rate is only a measure of the percentage of workers in the market who are employed.  It doesn’t count anyone who is not working and not actively seeking work.

Since January, 2009 the number of employed workers in the United States has increased 11 million.  That is an increase of 8% over 8 years.  On the other hand, about 15 million have dropped out of the workforce since January, 2009.  That’s nearly a 19% increase in the permanently unemployed over 8 years.  4 million more have dropped out of the workforce over the last 8 years than have been hired.

But we are still growing, so that’s good, right?  New hires rose 178,000 in November. On average, they’ve grown about 135,000 a month under Obama. The economy needs a minimum of 145,000 new jobs a month just to keep up with population growth. On the other hand, an average of about 155,000 have dropped out of the labor force each month. No credible economist is cheering 4.6% unemployment this time because it only represents long term economic failure.

 

Trump vs. The Media

Why they are losing and how they can win again

On October 10 before a national debate with Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump pulled off the prank of the century on the media.  Dogged by an old video of Trump saying horrible, demeaning things about women, he invited the press to a meeting to discuss it and apologize.

When they arrived, Trump had a panel set up.  He was there with four women from the Clintons’ past.  Juanita Broaddrick was a woman Bill Clinton had raped, Kathleen Willey and Paula Jones were two women Clinton had sexually harassed and assaulted, and Kathy Shelton was a lawyer who had represented a child rape victim in a case Hillary Clinton cheated to win for the defendant.  The war between Trump and the media was on, and Trump was up 1-0.

In a recent Washington Post article, they recognized Trump’s constant victories over the media and lamented how they really don’t know what to do about it.  Obama went as far as to blame Trump’s victory on bars and restaurants that play Fox News.  In fact, their recent attempt to marginalize competing news sources by labeling them as “fake” has become a parody itself as more information is released by Wikileaks showing how the mainstream media sent the Clinton campaign debate questions ahead of time, let them edit articles, and apologized if they thought an article was too harsh on her.

voting-boothWhile the Washington Post was calling out the “fake” right wing media for making claims that 3 million illegal aliens hacked the election by voting illegally, the New York Times was claiming that Putin and the Russians hacked the election by distributing fake news, hacking DNC emails, and possibly even interfering with the voting booths themselves. You can now identify which way a fake news source leans just by looking at who they think stole 2016.  This works for everyone from CNN and NYT to Fox News and Breitbart.

How do the mainstreams fix this and get back on the path to being trusted and having political influence?  It might help if they sought a truce.  The media has a very adversarial relationship with Trump.  On July 23, the Huffington Post put out a piece about how to defeat Trump. Disgraced, yet highly respected journalist Dan Rather said the media must do what he did to Bush and be more biased to beat Trump. The media that ignored Joe Biden for 8 years now has 24 hour surveillance on Trump’s Twitter account just waiting for a gaffe to jump on.

When Trump saved 1,000 jobs at Carrier, the media congratulated themselves for finding a silver lining in something Trump had done.  Then of course they predictably changed their minds on the deal labeling it an empty PR stunt that encourages crony capitalism.  It’s funny how Obama hasn’t even left office yet and suddenly stimulus, crony capitalism, and picking winners and losers is a bad thing again.

For the mainstream media to win again, it would help if they weren’t so obviously biased. They have become so predictable that we almost wonder if Trump says some of the more crazy things he says on purpose.  A prime example came this past week when Trump tweeted that flag burners should maybe get a year in jail.  Predictably, the media went crazy.  Typically blind NPR went running back to the 1980s to criticize Trump for making the same unconstitutional error that George HW Bush made.  In the process they skipped 2005 when Hillary Clinton co-sponsored a bill to put flag burners in jail for a year.  This of course has us all curious if Trump knew about Clinton’s bill, or if he just got extremely lucky.

If the media wants to beat Trump, they need to stop trying.  They need to go back to what they learned in journalism school and seek fact rather than substantiation of their truth. They need to ask questions again. Skepticism is a lost art.  A little balance wouldn’t hurt either.  CNN may be making a game changing move in their attempts to bring Megyn Kelly on board.

If they keep trying to be the propaganda wing of the Democrat party, Trump is going to keep beating them.

 

“This may well be the beginning of the end”

Another NYT columnist standing on the corner with a sandwich board

“This may well be the beginning of the end”.  That’s the opening statement from Charles Blow at the New York Times in a November 21st Op-Ed.  The title of the article is “Trump: Making America White Again”.  Blow’s argument centers on Trump’s cabinet picks and how that makes America patriarchal, white, racist, and misogynistic.

Of course, Blow’s timing wasn’t great.  Since labeling Trump a racist misogynist, Trump has picked three women for his cabinet including Elaine Chao, an Asian American immigrant.

Blow’s charges of racism, sexism, and so on are standard Liberal fare.  To be sure, Trump and Bannon have had many issues with saying blatantly sexist stuff, and Trump may have even done some things that were almost as bad as what Democrat favorite Bill Clinton did back in the day.  But as far as Trump’s “orange glow” being the sun setting on America, not quite.

Even Blow’s evidence for AG pick Jeff Session’s apparent blatant racism comes from dubious sources.  Blow cites the Southern Poverty Law Center, which is a radical Leftist group that labels all things Conservative as racist, bigoted and homophobic, yet is still considered a valid source by Liberals.  What is even funnier is SPLC’s actual statement, which considers Sessions to be a racist because he opposes illegal immigration.

SPLC considers opposition to illegal immigration and sanctuary cities to be akin to white supremacy and eugenics.  Of course, that’s rich coming from a party that is pro-abortion. Abortion rates among minority groups occur at alarmingly high rates.

Trump is not creating the white male utopia that Blow fears.  If anything, Trump is focusing on middle class workers who are a large percentage white.  They’ve been ignored for a while, which created one of the demographic shifts in this election.  The other major demographic shift was that Hillary Clinton received the lowest share of the black vote in 20 years.

Every year some whacko group predicts the end of the world.  A few years ago it was the end because the Mayan calendar had run out.   Harold Camping predicted the end of the world 12 times.  This year, it’s the New York Times.

Somali Refugee Attacks Students With Knife and Car

Democrats call for stricter gun control

Today was a terrifying day for Ohio State students.  Somali refugee Abdul Razaq Ali Artan plowed his car into a group of students on campus and came out swinging with a kitchen knife.  11 were sent to the hospital with injuries.  Although originally reported as an active shooter, 18 year old Artan appears to not have had a gun.  He was shot and killed by the police.

Artan had posted anti-America posts on his Facebook page prior to the rampage.  He seemed to suggest that America was interfering with Muslim countries.  After the attack, Hassan Omar, president of the Somali Community Association of Ohio called it upsetting, adding “We are American and we don’t want somebody to create this problem”.

Shortly after the attack, the Twitter universe erupted with calls for more gun control, including a tweet from Democratic Representative Sheila Jackson Lee decrying the “senseless shooting at an Ohio State University”. While the scene was still fresh, former Vice Presidential candidate Tim Kaine added that he was “Deeply saddened by the senseless act of gun violence at Ohio State this morning.”  Ohio State University is a gun free zone, and apparently the only shooting was when Artan was shot by police.

In addition to the hero police officer who stopped the attack, there were other heroes on the scene.  In one class room, military students protected their fellow students by closing them in a room and standing guard at the door.

The press is not speculating about the motive.  Our prayers are with the injured and their families.

The Dakota Pipeline

And a burning question about civil disobedience

As always, there are two sides to every story. I would liken this to getting a permit to build a pool in your back yard, following all the steps to secure that permit after legally buying your home, getting three quarters of the way done with the pool and finding a group of protesters in your back yard one morning because your home is on a Native American burial site.  An opinion piece in the Orlando Sentinel suggests that the popular story about the Dakota Access pipeline may not be as truthful as we all think.
According to the Orlando Sentinel piece, the company followed all the rules, attempted to contact and meet with tribal leaders ahead of time, submitted to an intense permitting process, and according to court records only ran into trouble after getting 77% done with the project.  Masked by claims of intrusion on tribal land, many politicians and celebrities have been attracted to the area by the mere fact that pipelines are associated with global warming.  Typically, the true reasons for the protest lie at the end of the list of grievances.
Liberals and Libertarians have decried the police use of tactics usually reserved for trespassing rioters who destroy personal property.  Of course, that response by police and authorities may be because protesters are trespassing, rioting, and destroying personal property.  Green Party candidate Jill Stein even had a warrant for her arrest issued after vandalizing construction equipment.
If you are a protester and you are on someone else’s property destroying their equipment and costing them money, you are the one choosing the consequences of such action. If that includes water cannons on a cold day or the rubber bullets that police use against trespassing rioters, then those consequences should be accepted. If in fact the Sioux tribe is in the right and the company, government, courts, etc are in the wrong about the facts of this case, then such measures are indeed unjust.  As usual, the weight of the consequences and the violence towards the pipeline workers will be measured by public opinion.
Speaking of public opinion, here is a question for our friends on the left who are so outraged at the treatment of protesters who are on government or private land, destroying private equipment, and refusing to move. Where were you when an Oregon farmer was sent to jail for protecting government land with a controlled burn to prevent wildfires? Remember when a bunch of farmers protesting the government’s attempt to seize Cliven Bundy’s land protested by seizing a remote ranger’s station?
Despite not damaging the station, these protesters weren’t called demonstrators.  They were called occupiers and trespassers.  More liberal media outlets labeled them as white militants.  This didn’t end with riot gear.  It ended with the FBI shooting and killing one of the ranchers at a traffic stop.  Where were the celebrities, politicians, etc during the Bundy protests?  The media is focusing on land taken from the Sioux hundreds of years ago and ignores special laws designed to help Native Americans today. During the Oregon mess the media asked why farmers would be so obstinate about the government taking their land when they receive so many subsidies.
To be clear, I’m not suggesting the Oregon farmers were right in their standoff.  But neither are the rioters and vandals at the Dakota Pipeline site.  Add this sad tale to the mounting argument of a biased and inconsistent media reporting.