Issues, News and Views


Sworn In
April 10, 2017

A Tremendous Day for
sound jurisprudence and
our Constitution!

Watch the swearing-in
and savor the prospect of
a Supreme Court Justice
who will defend our

Below is our rating of
Supreme Court justices
based upon judgement of
their fidelity to the

As the chart illustrates,
there are too many rogue
justices on the Supreme
Court. These appointed,
life-term judges take it
upon themselves to
arbitrarily unilaterally and
autocratically over-rule the
will of the people. They are
the equivalent of tyrants.

It is crucial to our
Democracy to fill all open
seats on all Courts, as
they arise, with true-to-
the-law judges. With
originalist, textualist
judges who apply the law
as passed by the
representatives of the

It is NOT the role of judges
to over-rule laws they just
happen to dislike. As
Gorsuch said at the

"A judge who likes every
outcome he reaches is
very likely a bad judge..."

April 07, 2017

A Supreme Court seat
opened with the passing of
Antonin Scalia just months
before the 2016 election.

President Obama
nominated Merrick Garland
as a replacement, but
Senate Majority Leader
Mitch McConnell (R-KY)
blocked the nomination,
claiming that the voters
should decide.

Elections have
consequences. Democrats
were certain they would
hold the White House and
regain the Senate in 2016,
thereby giving them full
control of the nomination

But the GOP held the
Senate, and won the
White House, against
all predictions.
Republicans campaigned
on the Supreme Court
issue, and won.

And that's why Democrats
lost the Supreme Court
nomination: because they
didn't win the election. The
people spoke. As it should

January 31, 2017

President Trump has
nominated Neil Gorsuch to
the United States Supreme
Court. View the
proceedings at the White

As the President so
appropriately remarked at
the nomination ceremony:

"I have always felt that
after the defense of our
nation, the most important
decision a president of the
United States can make is
the appointment of a
Supreme Court justice.
Depending on their age, a
justice can be active for 50
years and his or her
decisions can last a
century or more and can
often be permanent."

We anticipate that Neil
Gorsuch will be an
outstanding Supreme
Court Justice, just like
Antonin Scalia, the great
man he will replace.

Neil Gorsuch: a judge who
understands both what a
judge's role is; and what a
judge's role is not.


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.


September 25, 2018 - Crude oil prices pushed through $72 today even as President Trump was at the UN lambasting OPEC for high prices. But it's not really OPEC's fault.

The fact is that we have had sustained global economic growth for years, and the world's largest economy - ours - is growing as fast as anyone's not called "China". Ironically, President Trump's yuge economic success is partly responsible for creating the demand that's pushing prices up.

Now, you could blame OPEC if you wanted to, but it is not clear they could increase production even if they wanted to, and at current prices they probably wish they could.

Or you could blame us - our production is restrained by distribution bottlenecks. We don't have enough railways and pipelines to ship the oil even if we could produce more.

You could also blame Obama for the Iran deal - it was a terrible deal, but the world now needs their oil as badly as Iran needs the money they get from selling it. Undoing the lousy Obama/Iran deal now will push up oil prices and inflict pain on us even as Trump seeks to inflict pain on Iran - just so you know.

Or you could blame the Venezuela of Chavez and Maduro - maybe Brazil, Columbia, Spain and the United States need to launch a military engagement to overthrow the Chavez/Maduro regime, to restore democracy and bring oil production back on line.

Or we could get a global recession to reset the global energy supply and demand curves.

That's what a recession is - it is the resetting process after a supply/demand bubble bursts. Keep an eye on oil.

September 21, 2018 - Crude oil prices finished the week on the rise with the West Texas front month futures contract closing near $72 per barrel.

Weekly statistics released by the federal Energy Information Administration contributed in part to the rise: U.S. daily production is at an all-time high of 11 million barrels per day, but hasn't grown beyond that level for three months. In addition, the EIA reported declining inventories to 3+ year lows.

And then there's the dollar - a weaker dollar means higher commodity prices, and the dollar index has declined from about 95.5 to 93.5 over the past few weeks,

And then there's oilfield servicer Baker-Hughes' weekly rig count - the numbe of US rigs actually dropped by 2 over the past week, while the Canadian counted dropped by over 10% from 226 to 197. What's up with that, shouldn't higher prices bring more production on line?
We hold to our conviction that high energy prices are the single most consistent cause of recessions. How high is too high is the big question, but oil in the $70's is unlikely to sustain strong economic growth.

That doesn't mean recession - we are not predicting recession, at least not yet by any means. But higher energy prices mean slower economic growth.

Think of it like driving your car - slowing down to save fuel to make sure you can get to the next gas station, that's what we're talking about. We are not talking about running out of gas and being left high and dry waiting for AAA.

September 11, 2018 - This morning the BLS released its monthly JOLTS report and the trend we have highlighted recently continues, and even stronger.

They reported that there were nearly 7 million job openings in America in July, 6.939 million to be exact. Meanwhile, in their August Employment Situation report last Friday they reported that there were only 6.234 million unemployed people. Consider the monthly progression:
  • 2018/02: -628,000 (more job seekers than jobs)
  • 2018/03: + 48,000 (more jobs than job seekers)
  • 2018/04: +494,000 (more jobs than job seekers)
  • 2018/05: +594,000 (more jobs than job seekers)
  • 2018/06: +258,000 (more jobs than job seekers)
  • 2018/07: +659,000 (more jobs than job seekers)

  • Bottom line is that the job market continues strong, very good news for all Americans.

    September 07, 2018 - The Bureau of Labor Statistics released its Employment Situation report today and the numbers continue to come in strong.

    The BLS reports that 201,000 new jobs were created in August and that the unemployment rate has held steady at 3.9%. One of the few negatives was that the participation rate ticked down a bit from 62.9% to 62.7%.

    The workforce participation rate points to a structural shortcoming in the US economy. Other thigns being equal we want to see more people entering the work, getting jobs, earning wages, paying taxes, and being self-sufficient.

    The reasons for not participating in the workforce are many, but might be syptomatic of deeper social ills. Government policy should always be oriented toward incentivizing healthy working-age people to work, and discouraging such people from not working.

    Still, this is a strong report. The fact is that in 2018 America, if you want a job you can get a job.

    September 06, 2018 - Historic. And Good. That's the only way to describe the weekly jobless claims data released this morning.

    If the 1960's truly were the "good old days" then welcome back, Kotter! Last week only 203,000 new jobless claims were filed - if that seems like a lot, well, it's not. It's the lowest number since 1969. Almost 50 years ago.

    America's population in 1969 was 203 million, now it's 328 million - an increase of over 60%. So on a per capita basis, the current figure would translate to about only 125,000 in 1969 size.

    Donald Trump truly is making America great again. Please don't ruin it by voting Democrat in November.

    August 16, 2018 - The Philadelphia Fed released its business outlook survey this morning and the report came out much weaker than expected.

    New orders were down substantially - is this just a random variation and nothing more, or the canary in the coal mine that presages a slowing in the economy?

    Granted, most of the economic data - productivity, leading indicators, jobless claims, etc. - have been solid to strong. But the "synchronized global growth" story withered on the vine quite a while ago, and more and more, the US is an island of economic growth unto itself.

    Keep an eye on commodities - oil and copper are sliding, while the dollar rises. This is what you expect to see in a slowing global economy where the US is seen as a safe haven. For now.

    August 10, 2018 - The Treasury Departments released its Monthly Treasury Statement this afternoon and is it ugly.

    Our - yes, you and me - our 12-month spending deficit increased from $749.9 billion at the end of June to $783.8 billion at the end of July, a deterioration of $33.9 billion.

    Disingenuous dishonest Democrats will blame the tax cuts, but the revenue decline contributed only $6.8 billion to the deterioration, the increase in spending contributed $27.1 billion.

    You can blame the $1.3 trillion spending package passed by Congress earlier this year. You can blame the RINO Republicans who claim to be fiscally responsible but spend worse than drunken sailors.

    Blame RINO Congressmen like John Faso (R-NY19) who voted in favor of the obscene spending package. Oh, and against the tax cuts. Votes for spending increases, and against tax cuts. A true Democrat, with an "R" behind his name.

    August 09, 2018 - A few years ago New York Governor Andrew Cuomo railed against conservatives, saying that pro-life/pro-2A people had no place in New York.

    Now upstate Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY18), running to replace the humiliated former Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, has decided to take that page out of Cuomo's playbook - that you win statewide office in New York by saying the meanest, stupidest things.

    In a rant yesterday he used the "f-word", the "a-word", and threatened to use a baseball bat against some ambiguously defined Trump supporters that he could conveniently define as broadly or narrowly as circumstances demand.

    The diatribe was clearly intended to excite the far left nut jobs that he needs to rally to his side, and he made clear there is a wide swath of the state's population he abhors, namely, Hilary's deplorables. Yet with plausible deniability.

    And this is a guy running for Attorney General. Nice to know we have such a level-headed fair-minded person looking to take the job. Looks like we can add this sleazy guy to our Attorney General Hall of Shame.

    August 07, 2018 - The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released its Job Openings and Labor Turnover Status (JOLTS) report this morning, and the results were much the same as recent months.

    Basically, there are far more job openings in America than there are job seekers by over a million. The BLS says there are 6.662 million openings, versus 5.651 million job seekers.

    Things that make you say, "Hmmm...". Anyone who wants a job should be able to get one. So why do we still have people wandering the sidewalks and subways shaking folks down for money? Why do we have so many people on food stamps?

    Why can't people just stay in school, graduate, and get a job? It's not supposed to be difficult or complicated, just something any responsible citizen can and should do.

    Why are people so needy and dependent, when there is so much opportunity? Hmmm...

    August 02, 2018 - Is job creation slowing? Maybe just a bit, and given some of the scorching hot reports recently, maybe that's not a bad thing.

    The federal government's Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that 157,000 jobs were created in July, down from recent prints well above 200K.

    On the plus side, private payrolls were up by 170,000 which means that non-private - that is, government - payrolls were down by the difference, 13,000. Now that is a cause to celebrate!

    Pretty well every metric was flat - the unemployment rate dropped a tick to 3.9%, while the participation rate was unchanged at 62.9%, year-on-year wages remained unchanged at +2.7%, and the average workweek was unchanged at 34.5 hours.

    So basically kind of an unmotivated ho-hum shoulder-shrugger of a report, maybe just about right for a lazy Friday afternoon in August...


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