Never Say Never and Obama’s Waterloo
Hillary Clinton (pending the conclusion of the criminal investigations about her emails and the Clinton Foundation which linger on) may well be the Democratic nominee. As it is perfectly clear that Trump will win the Republican nomination the #NeverTrump bleats are beginning to fade. Many have realized that their arguments are ridiculous, and are more related to the diminution of their power to affect opinion than they are to substance. This week, as well, the administration gets its failures in foreign and domestic policy off the front pages as the loony press attempts to justify his public school unisex bathroom diktat and downplay overwhelming, mounting opposition to it.
A. The #NeverTrump wizards are getting some pushback from their colleagues, as the effort to mount a certainly futile third party effort goes nowhere.
If you are still on the fence about who to vote for in the general election, I’d like to highlight some facts and opinions in contrast to the #NeverTrumpers.
There’s this from an online friend “Ignatz Ratzkywatzky” in response to the claim that Trump is no “true conservative”:
He helped on Reagan's campaigns.
He endorsed McCain and Romney.
He contributed 136 times to the GOP and 86 times to Dems since 1999; exclusively GOP since 2010.
13 of his 17 five figure contributions were to the GOP; exclusively GOP since 2008.
He has stated a number of conservative opinions through the years.
He is not particularly conservative but cherry picked or simply wrong assertions are not convincing.
The amusing thing is seeing quasi-conservative neocons like Kristol, the very essence of their movement being dissatisfaction with and turning away from their Dem roots, speaking in high dudgeon and declaring anathema a quasi-conservative guy who became dissatisfied with and turned away from his Dem roots.
Among those pushing back against the #NeverTrump pundits, is the Wall Street Journal’s James Taranto who takes issue with their disrespect for differing views and their illogical arguments:.
He takes on Commentary’s Peter Wehner and Noah Rothman, National Review’s Jonah Goldberg, and Kevin Williamson, the Weekly Standard’s Stephen Hayes, and the Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin, in a brilliant fisking. Read the whole article, but here are some highlights:
[Of Wehner] his grotesque rhetoric -- from a man who, in that 2014 piece, extolled the virtues of intellectual humility, self-reflection and open-mindedness -- is all too typical of conservatives who style themselves ##NeverTrump. It’s not just that they disagree with Trump or find his character wanting, or even think Hillary Clinton is the lesser of evils. Trump’s ascendance has caused them to lose perspective, to take leave of ordinary logic. He’s driving them mad.
[Of Goldberg who contends Trump supporters constitute a ‘personality cult’]: But Goldberg does not even begin to make that case. His vision is so distorted by his loathing for Trump that he fails to see the “litmus test” he cites -- the expectation that a political party’s elected officeholders will fall in behind the party’s presidential nominee -- for what it is: a feature of every ordinary campaign. Similar failures of logic: The Weekly Standard’s Stephen Hayes sarcastically tweeted yesterday, apropos of the Trump-Ryan powwow: “We will now unify around principles we don’t share. GOP #2016.” Well, yes. That is pretty much the definition of a major political party.
[Of Rothman who argues that winning the election is not worth sacrificing one’s principles] Rothman is saying it’s not worth winning an election if the cost is losing one’s ability to appeal to the majority. Isn’t winning elections the whole point of appealing to the majority? Or is the point that the majority to which Trump hypothetically appeals includes too many of the wrong kind of people?
[As to Rubin’s desire to make the Republican party more selective] She wants to reinvent conservatism as liberalism with entitlement reform. Good luck with that. Even more absurd than the substance, though, are the circumstances under which she issues these diktats. She’s providing a long list of those who are to be excluded from conservatism while rejecting and vowing to “stop” the nominee of the more conservative of the two political parties. She’s in front of a house pretending to stand guard, when in reality she has locked herself out.
Jonah Goldberg observes in the column we quoted above: “The conservative movement can wait out a [Hillary] Clinton presidency intact.” He imagines it is intact now: That may be the most succinct statement of the problem.
Taranto is not the only writer who thinks the #NeverTrump conservative commentators have “lost their marbles”. David Horowitz joins him.
He takes issue with Bret Stephens, Bill Kristol, and George Will, who think we can just wait out a Hillary presidency. His particular aim is at Stephens who argues that in the Wall Street Journal. He notes that the Republican Congress presently was unable to hold in check Obama’s overreaching and ask how they could possibly undo the foreign policy wreckage of this administration and do better against her than they did against Obama. He reminds readers that she was secretary of state when “we abandoned Iraq”, “supported the overthrow of an American ally in Egypt and its replacement by the Moslem Brotherhood, the fountainhead of al-Qaeda and Isis”; “colluded in the overthrow of an American ally in Libya”. To this list he reminds us that she was behind the scheme to run guns to al-Qaeda in Syria, denied our ambassador in Libya security, and then lied about the cause of his murder. The capper, of course, is that her willful mishandling of classified information on an unsecured server violates the Espionage Act. He concludes:
This is not serious stuff, yet it is being peddled by first-rate conservative intellects and the fate of our nation may yet hang on it. The greatest obstacle to a Republican victory in November is the fratricidal war now being waged by the “Never Trump” crowd against the only person who might prevent the disaster awaiting us if the party of Obama and Kerry and Hillary and Sharpton prevails in November. Their Trump hysteria notwithstanding.
Don Surber, who is in the process of writing a book about Trump and has done extensive research on him, argues persuasively that he has the “leadership skills to lead the free world.”
To Trump detractors who say Trump flip-flops, Surber responds:
You can bet your assets that he will change his position at any time, anywhere, and any place if given new facts. He was pro-choice until he realized that a baby is not an inconvenience but a gift from God.
Yes, I get that he is not a cookie-cutter conservative when it comes to policy. But writing policy is not a president’s job. You hire people like Ted Cruz to draft policy. That is what President Bush 43 did.
Trump’s biggest selling point is that like Bush 43, Reagan, and Eisenhower, Trump accomplished something in life before entering politics. That taught him that public policy has consequences. Leaders should be aware of the damage as well as the good they do.
Over at the Weekly Standard Fred Barnes wraps it up:
“On November 8, we'll choose between Clinton and Trump. It's not so much that he is better, though he is. But she fails to meet minimal standards a conservative or a Republican should insist on. A vote for Clinton would be wrong. Voting for a third-party candidate or not voting would be half a vote for Hillary. To defeat her and the myth, a vote for Trump is required.”
Whether or not Hillary will be Trump’s opponent still remains up in the air as a number of criminal investigations and civil proceedings against her and her aides proceed.
B. The Bathroom Waterloo
Ridicule is a proper response to the attorney general’s equating public schools’ blocking boys self-identifying as "transgender" from using girls’ bathrooms and locker rooms to segregation of blacks, and Iowahawk is on it tweeting “
[T]his calls for a Norman Rockwell painting of National Guard troops escorting a brave drag queen to the ladies room.
Much as the media is working to tamp down fury at the administration’s heavy hand on unisex bathrooms and locker rooms in public schools, I think it is a rallying point for those many Americans who see every effort to humiliate them, deprive localities and states of the right to self-governance, endanger themselves and their families to advance an utterly silly proposition.
How preposterous is this?
In an article in The Washington Post in 1975, [Supreme Court justice Ruth Bader] Ginsberg wrote to dispel the fear that the Equal Rights Act would “require unisex restrooms in public places.” According to Ginsberg, “Emphatically not so.”
The now-Supreme Court justice continued, “Separate places to disrobe, sleep, perform personal bodily functions are permitted, in some situations required, by regard for individual privacy.”
Ostensibly this Lynch overreach is to protect the sensibilities of transgendered students.
I can find no statistics on the number of adults, let alone children, who are transgender, but it is certainly a small number (less than 1 percent), and schools which tried to accommodate them by allowing them to use a single stall unisex bathroom or a curtained off locker room were rebuffed by the government. This is what sensitive school administrations have done to protect these demonstrably vulnerable kids from bullying.
To use a facility designated for girls or boys when a child thinks he’s in the wrong body does not require a note from a doctor under the Lynch extortion order, the kids can just decide this on their own, even if they fully retain their original biological equipment. For those who remember adolescence, the rule seems certain to end badly.
In response to parental and common sense objections one school board head says he’s throwing the Department of Justice order in the shredder, He observes that the threat to cut off federal funding for those districts that don’t comply will hurt the poorest children, as those funds go to offset the costs of school lunch programs and aid to disabled students. Texas governor Gregg Abbott says it will mean the end of public schools and vows a legal fight against the order. “President Obama, in the dark of the night -- without consulting Congress, without consulting educators, without consulting parents -- decides to issue an executive order[snip] forcing transgender policies on schools and on parents who clearly don’t want it.”
In St. Louis girls walked out of school in protest.
It remains to be seen what affect this overreaching policy will have on girls’ sports -- where boys can if they so desire, compete as girls. Will U.S. teams resemble the former East German “women’s” teams? Will the Olympics officials go along with the rule that boys can compete as girls if they want to? The school year is almost over but I have no doubt the furious, perfectly understandable outrage against it will only grow in fall and the new school year begins.
Trump has stated he opposes the rule on federalism grounds:
“I believe it should be states’ rights and I think the states should make the decision, they’re more capable of making the decision,” Trump told the audience for ABC’s “Good Morning America”. When pressed, he repeated his pro-federalism policy: “I just think it should be states’ rights. I think many things actually should be states’ rights, but this is a perfect example of it.” He has allowed people to use whichever bathrooms they choose in his private establishment which is his right.
I’m dying to see what Hillary’s view is should any reporter dare ask her. Maybe they’re too busy asking her about the Clinton Foundation corruption or Benghazi or her emails on a private server.
In any event the Obama’s daughters attend private school not covered by the directive and Hillary’s daughter did as well.