Calm the Hell Down
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One of life's most important lessons is that you should never make big life decisions while angry.
On the cover:
Donald Trump Superfan
Robin Roy is one very eager supporter of U.S. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump. Wearing a t-shirt reading "Obama, Youre Fired. Vote Trump 2016", she had waited along the rope-line for a chance to meet Trump in person at a campaign rally in Massachusetts. - Brian Snyder ©2017 Brian Snyder
Elections Have Consequences
It isn't, of course - as I write this, Super Tuesday is still a couple of days away, and only a fraction of the delegates have been allocated. But choosing the right candidate is extremely important for the GOP to have any prayer of winning the general election.
The biggest drawback to Donald Trump's candidacy is that he pretends to be pseudo-conservative, yet whenever he is pressed for details on his policy positions, he is outed as the New York progressive that he is.
His biggest distinction from the Democrats is his tough stance on immigration, yet his proposed plan includes touchback amnesty...and it is widely agreed that any kind of amnesty would spell the end of Republicans' chances in national elections.
He claims to hate Obamacare, yet he has praised Obamacare's insurance mandate and advocated for a massive expansion of Medicare. To fight criticism on this point, he presents a false dichotomy: it's either his plan, or "people dying in the streets."
He fails to understand that giving any government funds to Planned Parenthood is tantamount to funding abortions. He defends Planned Parenthood with their own propaganda, saying that Planned Parenthood "does a good job in a lot of different areas...but not abortion." This is the rough equivalent to defending a serial killer because he spent the last few decades teaching Sunday school.
He supports (and has profited from) imminent domain a la the Kelo decision.
He recently advocated for loosening libel laws so he could start suing media outlets that printed negative things about him. Granted, he said "false," but on the campaign trail, he has repeatedly called truthful criticisms lies...taken to its logical conclusion, this would spell the end to the First Amendment, outlawing any criticism of a Trump government. This is extremely concerning, coming from a man who routinely uses the law to bully people.
He has a strange relationship with the white supremacist movement...a look at Donald Trump's Twitter activity from back in January showed that the majority of Trump's retweets were of tweets from white supremacists supporting him. He has been endorsed by David Duke and the KKK (who he shied away from denouncing, and lied about not knowing). A white supremacist group has been making robo-calls for Trump in multiple states.
I don't know where Trump comes down on the white supremacist movement, but the fact that so many white supremacists seem to be fans of his is very concerning.
Donald Trump has praised Vladimir Putin, Tiananmen Square, and recently retweeted a quote from Benito Mussolini.
In the 2008 Republican primary, Senator John McCain was a force to be reckoned with. In the American media, he was described as a "maverick," a man with a long history of public service; a war hero who could lead our nation to victory in Iraq and Afghanistan, and who would reach across the aisle and get things done.
Any time another candidate even smelled like he might get anywhere near McCain in the polls, the media would hammer him into oblivion, amplifying every scandal, real or perceived, until the effects showed in the polls and the next primary's results.
In the end, John 'Maverick' McCain was the GOP nominee...and the rest, as they say, is history - the kind of history that the mainstream media is intent on repeating.
No sooner had the primaries been decided than the media turned on McCain. One day a "maverick," the next day a doddering old man not fit to be president. The war hero couldn't even figure out how to send an email! Nobody cared that it was because of his war injuries that McCain had difficulty using a computer - what difference did that make, when the geezer is up against "the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy. I mean, that's a storybook, man."
It's bowling for presidents - the media sets them up, and knocks them down, and the masses don't seem to be the wiser, running from this story to that scandal to the Community Organizer turned Savior of America.
And now they're doing it again.
Thus far, the media has played softball with Trump...more like whiffle ball, really. The first tough question Donald Trump was faced with came during a Fox News debate back in August, and that one question led to weeks of vitriol, all of which was resurrected five months later when Fox refused to bow to Trump's demand that Megyn Kelly be removed as a debate moderator.
The left-wing media has tons of dirt on Donald Trump that they haven't used yet...and while the media holds laser-like focus on Trump's dubious criticism of Cruz, maybe throwing in a few minor jabs at Trump to maintain a veneer of 'balance,' most media outlets don't plan to run with any of the big stories until after the primaries. Polling has shown that Trump is the least likable candidate in the field, and once the media stops pulling its punches, he doesn't have a prayer.
The other aspect of this is the free advertising Trump has received from the fawning media. Election coverage has been dominated by two things: stories about Donald Trump, and stories about candidates' reactions to Donald Trump. This media dominance has given Trump the ability to run a successful campaign while spending relatively little money compared to many other candidates...but when the media switches from whiffle ball to hardball, Trump will have to start spending oodles of money he likely won't have. The Democrats have a huge war chest saved up for this election, and if Trump has to start fund-raising in the middle of the general election, they will spend him into oblivion.
Finally, "Trump University" must be considered. Donald Trump is being sued for fraud. According to court documents, the alleged fraud was quite significant...and it just so happens that Trump will likely have to testify in one of the two civil cases brought against him right in the height of the presidential campaign. When the press chooses to turn on Trump, this will provide them with plenty of ammunition.
Love Him Or Hate Him...
Another aspect that cannot be ignored is that there is little room for middle ground where Trump is concerned. The Donald has engaged in an extremely vitriolic campaign of character assassination against anyone who disagrees with him or threatens his standing in the polls in any way. This has been primarily aimed at Ted Cruz, though he has thrown out insults and lies toward any candidate that looks like they might threaten him in the polls. The extreme nastiness of these personal attacks - combined with his left-wing policy preferences - makes it extremely difficult for many in the GOP's conservative base to stomach the idea of voting for Trump in the general election. We've been fed moderate RINO candidates for the last few election cycles, and we're told that they are the only candidates who can win...and then we watched as the moderates lost to a left-wing ideologue, twice.
This time around, it looks like our candidate may be a left-wing narcissistic would-be tyrant with a penchant for destroying anyone who has the audacity to disagree with him. While we are being told that refusing to vote for Donald Trump is equivalent to voting for Hillary Clinton, in my opinion it's still a toss-up as to who would make a worse president.
There is still time for America to avoid a huge mistake, but at this point, it's anyone's election to lose. One of life's most important lessons is that you should never make big life decisions while angry. Calm down and think before casting that vote.
Robert Cleveland, Senior Conservative Editor: Robert Cleveland is the IT Director for a document management services company. When he isn't working on computers and scanners, he's spending time with his wife and kids, or writing about just how jacked-up Washington politics is. He is a strong believer that hard work and freedom are what make America the greatest nation on the planet, and it is of the utmost importance that we never lose those values. Robert's other writing can be found at his blog, more...)