Issues, News and Views
NEVER MIND MUELLER - LIFE GOES ON
2018/08/26 - Real news. Fake news. Who actually decides what's "news" anyhow? Who are the "they" who have put themselves in charge of that? And are they really honest, impartial people with no agenda? Hardly!
Seriously, who decides what's important and relevant to count as news? Well, one thing that's important is never to define something in terms of itself. But we'll do that anyhow it's important is to have a keen sense of what is important and what isn't, that's very important.
The mainstream media just goes on and on and on about the Mueller probe, but there really isn't all that much "news" that's "important" unless you live inside the Washington DC beltway. For the most part the day-to-day just doesn't matter that much. It won't matter until we get the Mueller report, at which time it might matter a lot. Or not. But you can be certain the inside-DC beltway new media will be in a frenzy no matter how searing or innocuous the Mueller report turns out to be. But in the meantime we get pelted with nonsense.
One of the characteristics of people who score highly in IQ type tests is their ability to separate the relevant from the irrelevant, to remain focused on the problem and not get lost in the weeds. If you are an investor in the stock market you will do much better if you don't panic over minor details, and instead have the pulse of the larger trends that are driving up, or down, the prices of your favorite stocks.
The same holds true for business investment decision makers attempting to put together their capital expenditure strategies. To them it matters less who the President is, than whether he or she is business friendly, and is pro-growth, and is determined to ensure a level playing field and an environment where business can thrive.
Such a President, whether named Donald Trump, Mike Pence, Nikki Haley, or whoever though probably not anyone with a "D" behind their name - will instill the confidence necessary to push forward with capital expenditures, knowing there is a solid chance that their investment choices will succeed. Those businesses will expand America's economic base, they will hire workers and pay wages, they will make profits and recompense their shareholders. And lots of taxes will be paid to sustain government programs. Mueller or not.
And so it is that Chalprem does not spend a lot of time worrying about and talking about the New Adventures of Donald Trump. You know, the "fake news". To our way of thinking, news is fake less so because it's true or false, and more so because it is relevant or irrelevant. And to that way of thinking, Jim Comey, the Mueller probe, Russian meddling and Donald Trump's possible misdeeds are fake news.
The real news what's really important is President Trump's policy achievements and objectives. The tax cuts, deregulation, obliterating ISIS (remember them?), immigration reform, standing up to Chinese cheating, and national security. Give the American people credit, they know what's important.
Polls show that what matters to every-day Americans are important things like the economy, the price of oil, interest rates, the unemployment rate, the deficit and national debt. And they view the Mueller-Comey sideshow as just that entertainment. You can tell that the collective intelligence of the mainstream media is pretty low, because while Americans want to focus on bread-and-butter issues, the media spends nearly all its waking hours and obsessed with the Mueller probe.
Some headline grabbers like to use the phrase "Constitutional Crisis" to, well, grab headlines. "Trump this and Trump that" they say, "and then we'll have a Constitutional Crisis". Nonsense. Trump is the President until he isn't, and then we have a clear Constitutional process for replacing him, in this case he would be replaced by next in line, Vice President Mike Pence.
The Constitution has a process for replacing the President. For example, if the President is replaced during the first half of his term, his successor can only seek reelection once so we would only get a maximum of eight years of Trump/Pence; if Pence replaced Trump during the second half of this term, we would get up to twelve years of Trump/Pence which gets America to 2028.
And would that really be so bad? No, not at all, in fact it would be great. Now, we have no way of knowing whether the President really is guilty of anything meaningful or not. We The People are routinely guilty of speeding, jay-walking and a host of other legal violations without legal action ever taking place. What will the Mueller investigation come up with? Speeding and jaywalking, or something much worse?
The general public can't know at this time whether Trump did anything bad or not, if so, whether it's a big deal or not will be up for debate, which is worrisome, because the mainstream media has not had a good track record of late for separating the relevant from the irrelevant. You can expect a public flogging from the biased media irrespective of the contents of the upcoming Mueller report.
But it doesn't look good for Trump at this point. The guilty verdict against Trump's campaign manager Manafort, the plea bargain with Trump's former Counsel Michael Cohen, and the immunity being granted to the Trump Organization's long-time CFO, together seem to indicate that something is going on, something not inconsequential, and quite probably not very good the President.
Now, suppose that apart from the blithering of the biased media, a public consensus develops that Trump really was a bad guy who did bad things and he is forced to resign: the fact of the matter is that scandals and sudden shocks at the Presidential level have in the past had little discernable impact on the economy or the stock market things just keep moving along.
The Kennedy assassination, Nixon's resignation, the Reagan shooting and Iran-Contra, and the smarmy Clinton scandals had little impact on the economy or the markets. Of course you never know the counter-factual, but so near as we can tell America worked through them just fine. Mostly they were tempests in the Washington DC teapot, stirred up by a self-obsessed media. There rest of us kept on plugging away with our day-to-day lives.
And so too, for whatever Mueller attempts to inflict on our nation. We all know that Trump is somewhat short-changed in terms of character, but so was Bill Clinton. They are not okay, but we are, we'll be fine. And we are already prepared for whatever Mueller dredges up.
Either it's not too bad, or Mike Pence becomes President. The far left nut jobs should be careful what they wish for, because they might just get it. Suppose the Democrats really do gain control of the House and actually impeach the President. Suppose they also gain control of the Senate and convict the President. Then what?
Americans did not particularly enjoy being dragged through the Clinton impeachment episode, and there is no reason to believe we'll enjoy such a fiasco any more this time. Oh, of course, progressives won't be able to get enough of it, but for the rest of us ?
And then what? Mike Pence as President? All the policy substance of Donald Trump, nothing measurably different, but without the smarm. An almost unbelievably normal person, with stupendous policy. This is who the Democrats want to run against in 2020?
And what about his Vice President? If Trump stepped down who would President Pence name as his own replacement? Well, how about Nikki Haley?
The first female VP, now with the inside track to become the first female President. And ethnically Asian, her immigrant parents are from the Punjab state of India. So that's a pretty good for those who care about Identity Politics. For those who care more about substance, Haley served six years (2004-2010) in the South Carolina state house, then served as Governor for six years before resigning after being confirmed as US Ambassador to the United Nations.
Without waxing poetic, a Pence/Haley would be a dream for the Republicans, and a nightmare for the Democrats. How far ahead can far-left nut cases think? This is chess, and if they're only playing checkers, then they are not thinking in sufficient detail, far enough ahead. They are much further ahead running against Trump in 2020; knocking him out would unleash a near-certain additional 18 years of Republican presidents. It's hard to see how Haley suffers a defeat.
Consider how having a not-Chinese Asian in the White House would strengthen our political hand in the Far East. There is some debate in China as to whether they should even want to supplant America as the world's greatest super-power, but to the extent that they want to and we want to prevent it, then having very close ties with India and building a major not-China alliance will be crucial.
Creating and presenting a united front on economic, financial, trade, shipping, military, control of natural resources, diplomacy, and other dimensions will be crucial as this century develops, and having a President who is ingrained with these concerns would serve us well. The point is that as good as Trump/Pence is, Pence/Haley might be even better.
But the Republican Party will be so much stronger post-Trump than it was before. Trump has shown a pathway to victory for the GOP that the beltway insiders could not conceive existed.
For example, Trump has shown that courting the working class vote is a winner, that this oft-ignored voting block wielded more clout than the conventional wisdom allowed for; and that this traditional Democrat block was available for Republicans, because most American workers see themselves in a symbiotic "win-win" relationship with their employers rather than in an adversarial "win-lose" relationship. Democrats have in the past courted the working class by using a class warfare us-against-them strategy; Trump has shown the GOP to stress the importance of uniting employers and employees, rather than dividing them.
Or immigration. Take a hardline, and stress the common sense. We are a nation of laws, not the arbitrary imperiousness of a King like George III or a President like Obama. Lawful immigration was, is and will be a great and necessary part of our past, current and future success, while illegal immigration damages us practically and erodes the fundamentals of our nation.
Enforce laws, and change the laws if they are flawed, or if they do not meet our needs. Immigrants don't like lawlessness any more than natives do the mindless nonsensical way we enforce our immigration laws or don't is an affront to all common sense Americans, regardless of the country of our birth.
Candidate Trump and President Trump have amply demonstrated that we can win elections and advance sound policy without caving to the ridiculous demands of illegals and their cheerleaders. Trump has taught us not to shrink from the challenges of the retrograde PC culture, but to face it head on and engage. Directly and aggressively.
The Trump agenda is fantastic and here at Chalprem we have voiced our support over and over. If two principled conservatives like Pence and Haley pick up the fight and continue wherever Donald Trump leaves them they will Make American Even Greater.
The real news is Trump's Make America Great Again agenda. A growing economy that creates opportunities for all Americans. The fake news is Russia-Mueller-Russia-Mueller.
Regardless of what happens with the Mueller investigation, we will still go to work. We will still take our kids to baseball and soccer, and still force them to eat broccoli and force them to continue their piano lessons. The next day we will drive the same car we did the day before, get up at the same time, continue earning paychecks. We will continue to demand things, and pay for them, and because we pay others will be incentivized to supply even as we work to supply others with what they demand. In other words, life goes on.
The law of supply and demand dictates that life will go on. The economy will continue to grow, the markets will continue to go up. Yes, they might experience some volatility while the know-nothings, the scaredy-cats, and the vol-traders do their thing. And when Mike Pence and Nikki Haley are sworn in the sellers will be wishing they had been buyers.
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