Bring it on! Doug Casey celebrates the government’s shutdown. From Casey at caseyresearch.com:
Justin’s note: The U.S. government is shut down.
It has been for 28 days now – making it the longest government shutdown in U.S. history by a wide margin. And there’s no telling when it will come to an end.
So it shouldn’t come as a surprise that the media’s having a field day with this. But I can’t help but wonder if this is as big of a deal as people are making it out to be. So I got Doug Casey on the phone to see what he thinks…
Justin: Doug, the U.S. government shutdown is now 28 days old. Are you surprised it’s lasted this long?
Doug: I’m not surprised, but I’m definitely pleased. There have been a number of shutdowns in the past. Sixteen days under Obama. Twenty-one days under Bill Clinton. Five separate shutdowns on Jimmy Carter’s watch. This one, like its antecedents, is no more than a tempest in a toilet bowl – just a nuisance for a small segment of the population. A proper shutdown would include the IRS [laughs].
In this case, the shutdown is because Trump isn’t getting the $5.7 billion he wants for his wall. But this begs the question… should there even be a wall? My answer is “no,” for a number of both practical and philosophical reasons. Keeping illegal aliens out is a good idea. But it would happen naturally if just two things were done.
Point number one, get rid of the welfare benefits that draw the wrong kind of people. During the 19th century, and up to the 1930s, there were absolutely no welfare benefits for immigrants – or anybody else, for that matter. As a result, you attracted opportunity seekers.
The battle over the wall is symbolically a battle over boundaries and limits. From James Howard Kunstler at kunstler.com:
The effrontery of Ms. Pelosi, Speaker of the House, in cancelling Mr. Trump’s State of the Union address in the chamber she controls is perhaps the worst insult to institutional protocol since the spring day in 1856 when Congressman Preston Brooks (D-SC) skulked into the senate chamber and smashed Senator Charles Sumner (R-Mass) about the head within an inch of his life with a gold-headed walking stick. Brooks’s attack was launched after Sen. Sumner gave his “Bleeding Kansas” speech, arguing that the territory be let into the union as a “free” state, and denouncing “the harlot slavery,” whom he imputed was Rep. Brooks’s dearest consort.
Many of us — except perhaps students immersed in intersectional gender studies — know how that worked out: a little dust-up in the meadows and cornfields known as the Civil War. We’re about at that level of animosity today in the two federal houses of legislature, though it is very hard to imagine how Civil War Two might play out on the ground. Perhaps opposing mobs (not even armies) meet in the Walmart parking lots of Pennsylvania and go at it demolition derby style, with monster trucks bashing their enemies’ Teslas and Beemers. Throw in clown suits instead of blue and gray uniforms and we’ll really capture the spirit of the age.
Not to be outdone, days after the SOTU cancellation, the Golden Golem of Greatness cancelled a Democratic Party grandstanding junket to the Middle East, led by Ms. Pelosi. A US Air Force bus has just departed for Andrews Air Force Base, where an Air Force jet waited for the junketeers. But then, with impeccable timing, Mr. Trump cancelled the junket — denying the use of military aircraft as Commander-in-Chief — and forcing the bus back to town with its load of elected dignitaries and their luggage — making the reasonable suggestion that they fly a commercial airline instead.
The Democrats aren’t helping themselves with the wall contrversy and the government shutdown. From Tom Luongo at tomluongo.me:
Nancy Pelosi (D – Boomers) has a problem. Scratch that, she has a number of problems, non counting her own ethical and moral shortcomings.
Pelosi is the Queen of Projection. She projects an air of invincibility while also projecting her weaknesses onto her political opponents. So, even though Nasty Nancy just got back her Speaker’s gavel, she does so at the weakest moment in the Democratic party’s history since World War II.
The traditional three-headed coalition of the Democrats has been shattered. The middle class Union guys are gone. By the time Trump is done with her over border security Pelosi’ll lose a bigger swath of the Hispanic vote than she already has.
All that will be left is her warmongering, globalist, shills for the MIC and the Deep State. Bicoastal Smug Liberals.
But, the hollowing out of the middle class is Pelosi’s biggest problem. Betraying the former Bernie Bros was the beginning. The Democrats under her leadership give lip service to bank reform which, in turn, has the hard-core Socialist left fired up.
That’s what rock-star Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez represents. She is the face of what’s left of Occupy Wall St. And she has a strong, knee-jerk, anti-incumbent, anti-establishment momentum behind her.
It doesn’t matter that she’s 28 years old, has little to no life experience or a firm grasp on reality. This is politics and these are chaotic times. She already has an acronym (AOC) and a nickname. She’s important.
Warhorses like Pelosi don’t know how to change their ways this late in their game. They think they can buy off people like AOC and outmaneuver her.
Pelosi faced a serious challenge to her party leadership in the run up to being elected Speaker of the House again. And she paid for that smooth vote with AOC’s appointment to the House Financial Services Committee.
When you’re going for the kill-shot on Trump there can be no weaknesses perceived.
But the big betrayal by the Pelosi Set is on war and empire. The same arguments animating the GOP insurrection against Trump by neoconservatives keeps Pelosi’s Smug Liberal interventionists happy.
The leadership of both parties love the Empire. They work non-stop to keep that gravy train flowing. It’s how they stay in power, amass incredible personal fortunes and why the country at large — left, right and center — hates their guts.
Do you think AOC wins her primary if the DNC hadn’t been so thoroughly despicable to Bernie Sanders’ supporters?
Or such full-throated supporters of questionable foreign interventions?
Pelosi is betting her political farm on border security. She does so because it is the one issue which galvanizes both her corrupt leadership with the populist, socialist Left represented by AOC.
They all hate what they perceive as bigotry.
Gabbard: The Anti-Pelosi
And it is also a distraction from the real issue that Trump put front and center, the Democrats’ weakness on foreign policy.
By announcing the pull out of U.S. troops from Syria and Afghanistan he reminded everyone just how much Pelosi et.al. love spending your money bombing brown people overseas for their profit.
As I said, appearance of strength is all that matters in politics at this level. Pelosi cannot afford to look at all weak during a government shutdown she started to oppose Trump and regain the White House in 2020.
So, while Pelosi is focused on being the establishment’s mouthpiece for taking down Trump to regain control over the vast government machinery, rebellions are happening within her own party.
Enter Tulsi Gabbard. Gabbard has real promise as the anti-war/anti-empire insurrectionist within the Democrats. She is a leftist version of Ron Paul in that she’s hated by everyone who thinks they are someone.
Because nothing unites the DNC and the RNC like the threat of peace getting an audience on the national stage.
When “anti-incumbent” is the watchword of the day, Gabbard throwing her hat into the 2020 Presidential race is a big deal. Gabbard will get support from anti-war Republicans, Independents and Libertarians.
They will cross party lines to vote for her in primaries, hurting the anointed ones.
She will successfully fund-raise on ending useless and counter-productive engagements in the Middle East. With her part of the Presidential conversation it forces her opposition to adopt her positions while simultaneously supporting Trump’s struggle against his own staff.
Trump should give her a lifetime membership to Mar-a-Lago.
Yes, she’s a mess economically, but that’s not where her value lies. She’s everything the current Democratic party isn’t: attractive, conscientious, brave and committed to peace.
And that is a nightmare for Pelosi. She’s positioned herself as being against whatever Trump is for. That makes her an easy foil for him.
With Gabbard in the race Trump can go hard on foreign policy and create havoc in the Democratic primaries. As long as he stays in the game, Gabbard is his stalking horse.
Don’t underestimate the political points he scored with canceling Pelosi’s overseas trip. This is the Donald Trump we asked for — end politics as usual.
Confront the banal hypocrisy of our ruling class.
And, most importantly, call out the cheap virtue signaling hacks like Pelosi get a free pass on every day in the media.
Trump made it clear that if Pelosi wants to conspire with foreign leaders against him that she can do it on her own dime.
And having the shutdown as the excuse in a perfect game of brinkmanship made it even more effective.
Pelosi acts like she has Trump dead to rights on petty corruption thanks to Mueller’s songbird Michael Cohen. I don’t discount how hard they are gunning for Trump now. But like Theresa May in the U.K. over Brexit, there is only so much people will take in service of petty party infighting.
Eventually a real political revolt occurs. Just ask Italian Democrats or Emmanuel Macron.
So Pelosi has to be careful how she plays her hand here. She’s losing to Trump on the wall. Every day the argument against it looks both silly and hysterical. $5.7 billion is less than one week’s interest on the national debt.
But, she’s pot committed to her position that ‘walls are immoral.’ What she may find out here is that if you back someone like Trump into a corner and promise to destroy everything he has, then he then has nothing left to lose.
And that is when he is most dangerous to not only her but to everyone she’s beholden to. After that her own people’s knives come out.
So, by starving the beast, I at least ensure they’re not squandering my money.
But I think it’s ridiculous that this government posturing is financially crippling the 800,000 government workers (and millions of contractors) who are now out of work – or being forced to work without pay.
To be fair, last night the president signed a law guaranteeing they would be paid for past work – a month into this fiasco. It’s a step in the right direction, as there’s a word for forcing people to work without pay – slavery.
But at its core, this whole shutdown comes down to a disagreement over $5 billion. That is how much money Trump wants to build the border wall between the US and Mexico. And Congress refuses to fund it.
Granted, that’s a lot of money to you and me. And it should be a lot of money to the government, too.
Somehow advocating for effective border and immigration control makes one a racist and white supremicist. From Ann Coulter at anncoulter.com:
By finally returning to the issue that won him the election, President Trump once again has a winning hand. That’s why we’re hearing so much about “white supremacy” this week.
Liberals lie all the time, but when they know they’re vulnerable they lie even more than all the time. They’re vulnerable on immigration. Even heroic, nonstop lying doesn’t help — as CNN has discovered.
So, naturally, the media have turned to their larger project of relentlessly trying to discredit conservatives as “white supremacists.”
Unfortunately for them, apart from a few crackpots — whom I assume exist in a country of 320 million people — there are no “white supremacists.” There were white supremacists 50 years ago, and they were all Democrats. (See my book Mugged: Racial Demagoguery from the Seventies to Obama.)
Today, “white supremacy” is nothing but a comfortable fantasy the left developed to explain its sick preoccupation with white people.
During the Obama regime, US Senator Schumer and US Rep. Pelosi agreed with President Obama that Walls do work and supported building a wall. Why do they oppose a wall now? The answer, obvious on the surface, is that with the presstitutes lined up against The Wall, Democrats can use the issue against Trump. However, this answer is not as good as it looks. Polls show that Trump has a far higher approval rating than the presstitute media and that Americans want the wall. So the question becomes: why have the Democrats lined up against the American people by opposing a wall? Why do Democrats oppose Americans having their own country as a place where American citizens live? Why do Democrats want America to be up for grabs by everyone who can illegally cross the border?
The answer, I think, is not just the immigrant vote, but also that in the last decade Democrats have become firmly allied with the ideology of Identity Politics, which teaches that “whiteness” needs to be dismantled, that is, done away with. https://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2019/01/14/identity-politics-white-genocide/ To have a massive inflow of nonwhites is a way to “decenter whiteness.” I would wager that if the illigal immigrants were white Europeans, the Democrats would be all for building The Wall.
Europe’s elite is finding it discomfiting that much of the peasantry can’t see the self-evident righteousness of their views and policies. From Raúl Ilargi Meijer at theautomaticearth.com:
There will be elections for the European Parliament on May 23-26 2019. They will likely change the face of Europe more than anything has done since the EU was founded. That is not some wild prediction. Many European countries have held elections since the last European elections in 2014, and just about all had outcomes that shook up domestic political ratios.
In most cases, countries went from traditional parties to newly founded ones. France erased the Socialists and center-right in 2017, and the final round of the presidential elections was between Marine Le Pen’s Front National and Emmanuel Macron’s brand-new En Marche. Macron won sort of by default, because France as a country would never have voted for Le Pen.
In Italy, M5S and Lega have taken over. In Germany, Merkel’s CDU/CSU coalition lost bigly though it remained the biggest party, but Angela lost her ‘socialist’ SPD partner which gave up so much it didn’t want to be in government anymore. In Spain, Mariano Rajoy’s center right lost enough to cede power to the Socialists who came up tops because they played a smart game, not because the Spanish wanted it to rule.
We don’t have to go through all 27/28 different countries to establish that there are almost tectonic shifts happening all over, away from traditional parties and towards whoever showed up without insanely extreme views. And if you think this move is now completed, you may want to think again.
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