19A021 Trumpian "Liberty" by Jim Davies, 5/21/2019    


In 2016 there was a fair amount of libertarian support for Donald Trump, and for sure his victory was stelllar in that it protected Americans from the disaster of a victory by Hillary Clinton. My own, muted contribution appeared that March as A Take on Trump. He has some good points (Hillary has none) and some bad ones. That ZGBlog noted that he falls well short of being a libertarian.

In office, the monolithic, Democrat Sore Losers Club has hobbled him badly so that very few of the more attractive parts of his program have taken place, while other influences (such as Jared Kushner) have steered him to do very poorly in areas where we hoped he might do well.

He's made commendable progress with North Korea, though has fallen short of withdrawing US troops from the trip-wire of the 38th Parallel, but rather than complete a US withdrawal from the MidEast he has said troops will remain indefinitely in Afghanistan (why??) and he's currently making serious threats about waging war upon Iran (why??) He promised better relations with Russia but has yet to deliver; sanctions on that country remain in place.

He has ripped up the trade agreement with China (fine; governments have no business making any trade agreements at all) but has imposed a tariff on incoming Chinese goods; there is no call for that whatever and those taxes will make living more expensive. He's a businessman; he must know that. It's hard to tell whether he imposed them so as to curry favor with his protectionist base, or whether he's unable to over-rule his own State Department bureau-rats.

One item of the China trade is Huawei, a fast-growing telecom company which has been blackballed by the President because some of its products allow the Chinese government a "back door" through which it can spy at will on all who use them for communications. He says it amounts to espionage. So it may; but at the very same time his US Government is spying relentlessly and massively on all the communications, domestic and foreign, it can get its fangs around. Windows-10, for example, soon to become the only supported standard from Microsoft, has such a back door; the company cooperated by inserting it, yet curiously does not advertise it to users as a desirable feature. Accordingly, Trump is operating a double standard. His tongue is forked.

So while matters would have been worse yet under Hillary, there has been no increase in liberty under Donald and that's disappointing. He has not even reversed the persecution of Julian Assange, whom he claimed to admire while campaigning; he has offered no immunity to Edward Snowden, done nothing at all to slash the monstrous power of the NSA and has not even dissolved his IRS, which he claimed to "hate." He is pursuing his trademark "Wall" to please his anti-immigrant base, yet that is ridiculous and needless; mass immigration would stop cold if the motive were removed by repealing minimum wage rates, OHSA regulations, etc. And I didn't hear that he's negated many of the 20,000 anti-gun laws that limit liberty across the land.

The movement that put him in office is a bit of a Rubes' Revolt. A large part of the population has understandably grown disgusted and disgruntled with the arrogant, complacent rule of soi-disant "liberals" and demanded change; good! But they are not coherent. They haven't learned why things are so wrong, and so have not identified the culprit: government itself.

The fault for that is largely ours. We have the answers, and in TOLFA we have the method of delivering them. We need to use those resources with greater urgency. Will you?

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