American Fail: Why l feel shell-shocked and fearful for my country

American Fail

All great nations rot and weaken and eventually crumble—typically from the inside out, but America’s slide seems more like a supernova. I’m no historian, but has any nation soared as high and crashed as hard as our 244-year-old American republic?

For the first time in my life, I fear for my country. What happened?

I think things went south beginning in 2016. We elected a polarizing president whose worst fault and best strength was that he was an outsider. Initially, the media and opposing party laughed at him. I laughed at him. Then in the space of a few hours on election night, the laughter ceased and the shock set in as tears flowed on one side.

The clown became Hitler

We’ve seen gridlock and nasty politics, but does anything compare to the vitriol of four years of Russian Collusion, Ukraine impeachment, and finally, COVID weaponization? Are there any limits to the lengths one side has gone to rid the country of the clown king? It’s an American Fail.

And now half of us are troubled by a troubling election. Somehow, some way, a guy who barely became his party’s nominee secured 12 million more votes than his party’s last superstar. Really? As far I can tell, Joe Biden’s best quality throughout his many years in politics is his gift of gab. If his gift is no longer golden, what’s left to offer voters other than his not being Trump?

This guy raked in a record 81,000,000 votes?

Of course, one could argue that Biden’s votes were simply votes against the other guy. It’s not that he’s uber-popular; it’s that he’s not Trump. I tell myself that repeatedly when trying to process the president-elect’s purported election victory, but it just doesn’t square for me.

Of course, the triumvirate of one party, their media, and big tech censor nannies assures us that all is well in election land. The 2020 version has been certified 100% clean and pure. Nothing to see here, plebeians—move along. Meanwhile I and half the electorate—some 74 million schlubs— are left scratching our heads suspiciously while becoming more and more cynical about the news we see and hear and, sadly, the country we love. American Fail.

It feels like the six years I spent serving in our military was for nothing. It seems like ages ago that right was right and wrong was wrong—for both political parties and a culture that knew the difference. Ronald Reagan and Tip O’Neill , Bill Clinton and Newt Gingrich—what happened to bipartisan leadership? It was DOA by 2018, maybe before.

Perhaps the death of compromise and the ramping up of rancor began when our media chose to chuck their ethics and tar and feather a president.

By hook or crook

My trust in media is dead. They killed it. Their self-inflicted coup de grâce fell swiftly with a fatal triad of Trump-hysteria, the pandemic, and an iffy election. I know of what I speak. I’m a journalism graduate—got a master’s degree in it.

Everything I learned in J-school no longer applies in the real world of journalism. News IS fake. For many reasons, I’m glad I became an advertising copywriter rather than a partisan faker. There’s more truth and honor in selling someone what they want rather than what YOU think they need.

The ubiquitous “What you need to know” spills their beans. The Washington Post tagline, Democracy Dies in Darkness, makes them look silly and sick with irony.

They think we’re fools. Telling us what they think we need to know is baby-steps propaganda. Telling us what we need to know about the election has become a media mantra. “No evidence of widespread voter fraud” is wordplay and full-on gaslighting. It’s also a straw man argument no one’s making.

They use “widespread” like we copywriters use “virtually” when pushing a product claim AND covering our clients’ butts. The Geronimo’s gerbil-driven drivetrain is virtually maintenance-free.

Here’s the catch: No evidence of widespread voter fraud doesn’t mean there’s no evidence of voter fraud. Widespread? No. Strategic swing-state fraud? Likely.

Voter fraud has happened in every single American election. Don’t buy it? Take a gander at this state-by-state list of convictions from The Heritage Foundation. Before you do, here’s a one-word and massive difference between the 2020 election and all the others—pandemic. The moment blue-state governors and their party began talking COVID and the election is the moment I began to fear for its integrity and our American Fail.

Crisis management

What did Obama’s Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel once say?

You never want a serious crisis to go to waste. And what I mean by that is an opportunity to do things that you think you could not do before.

Like an opportunity to bypass state legislatures to unconstitutionally change election rules in swing states in order ensure a victory you’ve convinced yourself will save our democracy? A serious crisis that comes along once a century? A serious crisis blue-state governors took full advantage of to do what they think best in the name of flattening curves and public safety?

Let me be clear. It’s not that I know that one party committed strategic voter fraud in swing states and stole an election. It’s that I don’t know that the election was clean and fair. I have my doubts. I suspect cheating from a party that wants abortion up to and after birth, no form of voter ID, to add illegal immigrants to voter rolls willy-nilly—their voter rolls, and free this, free that, pander, pander, pander. American Fail.

How can we be sure when we’re told to accept record turnout, record votes for Joe Biden, a record low ballot rejection rate for a record number of ballots, nutty statistical anomalies that strangely lined up nicely for one candidate, and a clear and dangerous political weaponization of a pandemic?

I still have hope

Ask yourself this question as you watch tonight’s two historic and pivotal senate run-off election race results—if you even care anymore. For a while, I didn’t, but isn’t America worth any and all our efforts to help ensure we’ll care about future elections and preserving our greatest freedom—our vote?

I think so. It’s why I still hope. 2024 will be here before we know it and chances are there will be no virus, no pandemic, and no opportunity to prevent us from going to the polls. If both parties are serious about election integrity, let’s urge our leaders to take steps to ensure it.

We desperately need voter ID requirements, rules and procedures debated and passed in state legislatures, more stringency regarding mail-in and absentee ballots, and as much in-person voting as is possible. I’m all for states’ rights, but the winner of a presidential election becomes president of our United States. It’s a federal—not a state—office.

We owe it to ourselves and to future Americans to reestablish trust in our elections. If we cannot push our leaders to value principle and patriotism over power, we may as well give up our republic. Ben Franklin wondered if we could keep it. It was a fair question then and is even more so now.

We’re at a crossroads. Fail or fight—it’s our country and our choice.

Wordplay: Dismissing voter fraud with a phrase

“There is no evidence of widespread voter fraud in the 2020 election.”

How many times have you heard this phrase parroted by pundits and partisans in media and politics? They say it and repeat it for one purpose—to convince Americans that the 2020 election was free and fair.
 
By using the word “widespread,” they create an artificial bar to imply that, absent of widespread voter fraud, our 2020 election is legit and Joe Biden is our president-elect.
 
In contrast, I have a better, fair and responsible statement:
 
“There is alleged evidence of strategic voter fraud in the 2020 election. The question is whether it exists and, if so, does it rise to the legal level necessary to affect the outcome of the 2020 election.”
 
That media members are tripping over themselves to quash all mention of voter fraud is DEEPLY disturbing. This is not how truth-seeking objective journalists pursue their vocation. Instead of acting as our watchdog over people in power, they’re acting like one party’s attack dog.
 
Additionally, there is no constitutional office or designation of “president-elect.” This term is a media creation. In the 2000 election, apparent winner George W. Bush became the president-elect only when all results in all states were verified and electors had cast their votes.
 
Joe Biden is the apparent winner of the 2020 election. He is not the president-elect. The votes have not been certified and electors have not cast their votes.
 
Finally, if our government does not overhaul our election system to restore trust in future elections, we’ll forever lose faith in our most essential freedom.

Trump acts like a fool. Biden seems like a tool. Who to vote for and why.

fool or tool
Photo by Jonathan Simcoe

Just like in 2016, we’re faced with two flawed candidates. One’s a fool and the other’s a tool. One runs his mouth and indulges his itchy Twitter finger. The other seems barely sentient. One steamrolled his way to infamy in the first “debate.” The other was interrupted so many times he had little chance to gaffe the night away.

One lashes out at hordes of media and political enemies. By doing so, he stokes their hatred and our division. The other is coddled by the same hordes who ask him hard-hitting questions like, “What flavor is your milkshake, Mr. Vice President?”

One makes unscientific assertions about COVID and takes the low road of name calling and ridicule at his MAGA rallies. The other weaponizes a pandemic and uses a mask as a badge of belief in science.

One respects power over character when dealing with dictators. The other blames Russia for his son’s incriminating and damaging emails while insisting he’s the epitome of a decent and honest guy.

Can we agree that neither candidate is a paragon of virtue? That both are flawed sinners—like you and me? Perhaps it’s time we look past their personalities and peccadilloes and focus like laser beams on their policies.

Policy 1: Taxes and your finances

Let’s talk taxes. Trump cut taxes and regulation in 2016, and the economy took off like a rocket. And even in the midst of blue-state lockdowns and COVID-driven partial restrictions in red states, our “new normal” economy is surprisingly better than expected.

Biden says he’ll raise our taxes. He also says he won’t raise taxes on income earners under $400k. But here’s the catch: Biden plans to eliminate Trump’s 2016 tax cuts. This means that earners below $400K will be required to begin paying the taxes cut by Trump. And this means that by cutting Trump’s tax cuts, Biden will raise our taxes. Get it? A tax cut cut is actually a tax increase.

The Wall Street Journal says Biden’s plan to tax “the rich” (over $400K earners) will increase their tax rate from 40 percent to 55 percent. This make-the-rich-pay-their-fair-share move will please socialist democrats like Bernie and AOC, but will drive wealthy businesses and taxpayers to outsource American jobs and shield personal income in order to lower tax burdens that will be too burdensome and vastly unfair.

Driving away job creators and investors is never a good plan for a free market economy. It is, however, an effective way to begin transitioning to a democratic socialist model. And any smidgen of socialism—democratic or no—paves the way for higher taxes, lower wages, and reduced access to quality goods and services.

Conclusion: If you want to pay less in taxes and enjoy a stronger post-COVID free market economy, vote for Trump.

Policy 2: Public safety and police

Trump says he’s all for police, the military and the rule of law in cities and towns like riot-riddled Minneapolis, Portland and Seattle. He’s said time and again that he’s ready to deploy the National Guard—and even the military—to restore order.

Biden and Harris express support for protestors, rioters and looters in these cities and elsewhere. They routinely parrot the media when replacing violence and looting with “mostly peaceful” protests. In doing so, they embrace a narrative that asks us to disbelieve what we see with our own eyes—fire, thievery and mayhem.

Trump wants to help police officers get a better at protecting us. Biden wants to defund them. Granted, defund is a scary word for reducing their budgets—and presence—in crime-ridden communities in which residents want and need adequate police support. Defunding the police is like removing locks from your doors and replacing them with signs that read: “Please, do not enter.”

Defunding the police is bad policy. Its proponents want to replace police with community leaders and social workers. This seems good from a Utopian point of view, but it flies in the face of human nature. Criminals follow their worst natural inclinations. Rather than curbing their impulses and desires when confronted by social workers and community leaders, they’ll rob them—or worse.

Conclusion: If you want to keep or make your community safe, vote for Trump.

Policy #3: Healthcare

Let’s face it: The Affordable Care Act, a.k.a. Obamacare, costs us much more and gives us much less than promised. Speaking of promises, the primary promise pitched to us by Obama and Biden was that if we liked our health insurance, we could keep it. This was never true, and Obama and Biden knew it all along.

Many of us pay double or triple our pre-Obamacare premiums and weren’t able to keep our healthcare plan or doctor. Question: How is paying more for less coverage and care options good healthcare policy? It’s not. The Affordable Care Act was not designed to be good policy—it’s a stepping stone to single-payer healthcare.

What is single payer mean? In a single-payer healthcare system, everyone’s covered regardless of their ability to pay. Our government would be the only entity paying for coverage, likely funded with our taxes. The “single payer” is the government.

What happens if government doesn’t have the funds to cover our coverage? What about government shutdowns? Will essential procedures be help up while politicians play chicken? Canada has single-payer healthcare, which is why those who can fly south to get better care without the long waits.

Single-payer healthcare is socialized medicine. I use it with the VA. Trust me: You don’t want single-payer healthcare. The doctors at the VA act like time-clock punchers. Why wouldn’t they? Their work is just a job. Their motivation is to get through the day, not to build a thriving private practice. It’s socialism versus private market.

Imagine our nation’s entire population in a massive and inferior single-payer healthcare system. It would be clunky, tenuous, incredibly expensive and fatally flawed. Government can barely do what it does right now. How would it fare trying to provide what democratic socialists contend is a human right?

Fool or tool?

As I say, Trump is a fool, but at least he’s his own fool. He says and tweets as he does because he’s honest about who he is. No one can say that with Trump what you see is not what you get in a president. He’s bombastic, bullying, in your face and combative. But ask yourself this: If you were the target of daily attacks from media, career bureaucrats and expats from your own political party, would you be rather touchy and defensive?

Biden is a tool because he’s governed by the whims and wishes of proud socialists like Bernie Sanders and heavy-on-passion-light-on-wisdom democratic socialists like AOC. Under pressure from them and their extreme wing of his party, he’s flipped on virtually every position he’s ever held while in office for four decades.

Can we agree that Biden’s not entirely there cognitively? If so, is it any wonder he’s a tool? In moments where Old Joe seems like the Joe of Old, he roars to life, but typically when someone hacks him off. When this happens, he lashes out at “reporters” and voters who ask him something more challenging than, “Why do you think Trump is so bad?”

Okay, let’s get to it. Vote.

All personality problems aside, if we focus on policy, do we vote for the fool or the tool? Keep in mind, that a vote for Joe Biden is a vote for Kamala Harris as president. This should be frightening. As unlikable as Hillary was and is, at least she’s honest in her beliefs. Hillary’s a true believer; Kamala’s a true pretender.

When it comes to political views and positions, Kamala is a chameleon and Machiavellian. She’s a Kameleon, a Kamachiaveleon. Virtually everything she says is strategically designed to help her gain power. Her full-frontal fakery is why she was booted so early in the democrat primaries and unable to garner even one percent of her party’s support.

Harris’ policies are frighteningly Californian. I know, I live in the Golden State. With high taxes, low-quality infrastructure, wildfires brought on by poor forest management, out-of-control homelessness, and tone-deaf leftist government policies, it’s not so golden anymore. If you vote for Biden, you’ll get President Harris.

In conclusion, if policy guides our vote—and it should—do we vote for the fool or the tool? Low taxes and proven economic growth and jobs or high taxes, slow growth, fewer jobs and less financial security?

Safer cities, neighborhoods and communities and respect for law enforcement or more anarchy, rioting, burning and looting and continued disdain for law and order?

Better healthcare with protection for those with preexisting conditions through repeal and replacement of Obamacare or expensive lower quality care and movement toward a gigantic and fatally flawed single-payer healthcare system?

Fool or tool? Let’s vote.