Saturday, February 10, 2018

The Glory of Sports as Life

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Every so often an event occurs that makes us stop, look around and take in the greatness of America. I experienced just such an event this week.

Let me start with a little back story about Philadelphia and sports. No city in the country loves their sports teams like the City of Brotherly Love. I've lived in other cities and traveled this country extensively and can honestly say we are borderline psychotic when it comes to our sports. Whether it be the 76'ers, the Flyers, the Phillies or even college teams like Villanova and Penn State, we are a sports town through and through. But no team is as beloved as the Eagles.

Coming into this season the Eagles were thought to be a good team with a second year quarterback who showed flashes of brilliance but looked to need more seasoning. We lost what I considered the heart of the team in running back Darren Sproles early and I thought that would have a significant impact on the team. We also lost left tackle and all pro Jason Peters, special teams star Chris Maragos and middle linebacker Jordan Hicks. Yet this team just kept winning.

But then the worst happened, Carson Wentz went down with a knee injury and was out for the year. Philly wept...this was our year and now it wasn't.

Next man up.

Enter Nick Foles. Where many teams would have folded, this is not many teams and one could say there's never been another like them. they became closer and shut out the distractions. They rallied around their backup QB and made an unbelievable run to immortality.

The city went along for the ride and invested themselves. This city had their hearts broken too many times to count and we are jaded. We were wary of wholeheartedly giving ourselves to the team but we did and they did it.

The parade was epic as we all knew it would be. People poured in from everywhere. People drove over the nigh before and slept in their cars or waited in long lines to catch a train. They walked across bridges, rode bikes and or caught Uber's. Everyone knew they had to be on Broad Street or along JFK Parkway. Beers were consumed before most people ate breakfast. It was a was our party. No longer did we have to hear the lame "how many rings do you have?" from people who's team hasn't won a championship in two decades. No, we are the reining champs and the energy because of that was palpable.

It was an enormous love-in. African-American guys from West Philly were hugging white guys from the suburbs. we sang, we danced and we did the Eagles cheer until we couldn't sing anymore. We watched a crazy center dressed like a leprechaun on acid go on an epic rant and it brought the city to a crescendo. We were all part of it and just for one day politics didn't matter, color didn't matter, social status didn't matter. We were all just Eagles fans and champions.

Little kids stared in awe, adults cried, police officers danced, school teachers who no one knew were even a sports fan drank beer with a construction worker. It was a day I'll never forget.

Now let's do it all over again next year.

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Trump Proving America & Free Markets Work...Again.

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For some reason, every decade or so America forgets that we are a nation built on free market economics. Perhaps it's the occasional downturns that do it or the promise of a brighter future espoused by a left-wing community organizer with no history of working anywhere that required any business acumen. Sometimes it's scandal that pushes us in the direction of European socialism. Either way, for some reason people lose their collective minds and we elect people who hate free markets and corporations.

But then a funny thing happens, people look around and say to themselves that we are seriously offtrack. It may be because they are unemployed, under-employed or just stagnant in their position. They grow sick of being called selfish wanting more for them and their children when they know they are not.

The Obama years are a great example of that. Obama has an inherent belief that the USA has been a bad actor, that we've ravaged lesser nations and exploited them for our gain. The unshakeable belief that corporations are evil to the nation, their employees and society as a whole (until he and his fellow Dems need money) guided us during the Obama years. You may recall his "you didn't build that" bullshit. He undermined corporations at every turn and instead of holding America up as an economic beacon for the world he attacked them. In all my years I never once thought we'd have a sitting president attempt to thwart the very power that makes us great.

Enter Trump. By cutting regulations, cutting taxes and constantly pushing American business as good for the world, he's fundamentally changed us as a nation. We have hope where none existed under Obama unless you were here illegally, living off the government dole or enjoyed paying more for health insurance while getting less. We are in the beginning stages of an economic tsunami whereby the sheer power of the US economy will lead to a turnaround globally. Trump has laid a plan out that ensures we trade equally in the world market place. His actions will force several things to happen; if other nations want to succeed they will have to innovate, improve efficiency and take risks, all the hallmarks of free markets. His speech this week in Davos was a great example. "America is open for business" is exactly the thinking that made America great.

Democrats have been reduced to telling Americans that $1,000 is "crumbs" while just a few years ago were praising $40 as huge. They are loathe to even acknowledge that the economy is booming, people's 401K's are getting fatter and people feel secure in the future. Instead they attack it and even go so far as to say that Obama is responsible. But they are once again on the wrong side of where the nation is. People vote their pocketbook or wallet. There's no way the citizens of the US will stop this economic juggernaut. Democrats are in the unenviable position of arguing that the extra money you take home every two weeks or that bonus you just received is "crumbs" or is just a big ploy by your employer to screw you. The fact people have more money and very few Democrats voted for it is a an even bigger problem for them is if they beat Trump (an idea looking increasingly unlikely) they will have to vote to raise taxes once again.

These are really good times in America regardless of what's said by Democrats and in the fever swamps on the left. Real people are making real money and the middle class is being rebuilt. In spite of what every liberal and never Trumper believed, we are booming and they can all be left to their miserable lives where Trump lives rent free in their heads. The oil and gas sector is leading the world while hurting Russia and OPEC in the process forcing real change. Chinese expansion will be seriously curtailed if we forge further economic alliances with emerging Asian nations.

Overall we are in a good place with some missteps--namely the tariffs slapped on washing machines and solar cells reported this week. Yet the grade for economic policies is a solid A+.

Sunday, January 07, 2018

Trumps First Year Was One For the Ages

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For those of you who have known me for awhile, you know I've been writing about politics for the last 15 years. This blog started when the invasion of Iraq did in 2003. I've blogged most of the W years and all of the Obama years but slowed down as the Trump campaign and eventual first year occurred. Mainly that is because of the much higher profile of Facebook and Twitter and how the Trump campaign did exactly what the Obama campaign did; got their points out via social media. This blog reaches a minimal audience--well down from the heyday back in the 2006-2010 years. I could reach 300-400 people daily on Facebook and Twitter and maybe change one mind or even secure one wavering vote.

Over the last year, I've seen something I never thought I'd see; true change and reform within the federal government. In the past, it was just a slight change from left to right and back again. Obama changed that, he took the federal entity farther left than any previous president save possibly FDR. He fundamentally changed the power of the presidency by enacting regulations over legislation. He had his pen and his phone and he used them increasing spending to unseen levels and growing the federal civil service to grotesque levels never envisioned by the constitutional framers. He also expanded the executive branch in ways never seen before and when us on the right brought up the fact that the power allowed him would be seen as a precedent for future presidents we were laughed at because the left truly believed that they would establish a generational foothold on that branch.

Then along came Donal J. Trump. Here was a man that played by a set of rules the establishment and the media (but I'm redundant) couldn't fathom. After years of patting the blur collar voter on the head every four years assuring them they would be taken care of while simultaneously creating an America where they had no place finally caught up to them. Trump spoke directly to them. He went to Ohio, Wisconsin, Michigan, western Pennsylvania and the heartland and said I see you, I understand you and I will help you. Amazingly, a billionaire from New York connected with the forgotten blue collar worker and allowed them to see his vision. He won in spite of his faults because people who wanted the American dream saw in him as one who could deliver it. Hillary's people were playing from a 2008 playbook where Trump was playing by a 1980 playbook with a 21st century media. He also played by the rules that say if you win the electoral college you win the election; total votes don't mean anything. While Hillary ignored those who Trump most appealed to in favor or fundraisers and coastal elites, Trump went out and stumped for for historically democratic voter and made them feel like there was true hope.

So Trump beat Hillary. Immediately the media ganged up on him. Never had I seen a winning candidate not even in office suffer the negative publicity that Trump did from the media. They beclowned themselves by shedding any journalistic integrity they once had and printing any salacious story they could without even doing a little investigating. In the past, that would've doomed the president elect. But not Trump, he went back after them on every single story. He changed the news dynamic by tweeting at 2:00 AM or releasing a flurry of tweets at 5:59 AM. He drove the news cycle and when they had something they thought would stick he'd change the news cycle again. He tweeted out stories before the authors of them could release them and put his spin on the story before it could be digested.

But amazingly and without the media noticing it, he went to work. The single most conservative supreme court nominee was nominated and confirmed, The media would lose their minds and he'd tweet out something different and they would go in that direction. Allegations of Russian interference in the election were running rampant based on a dossier that was paid for by the Democrats so Trump selected a special counsel to investigate shutting people up while he worked but then fired the head of the FBI whom many on the left blamed for Hillary losing. This forced the media to do a 180 on Comey and say he was a good guy, a martyr after destroying him for months. Meanwhile, anyone paying attention saw exactly what was happening. Trump was simultaneously making the media crazy while he went about his daily work of reducing regulations--a key part of what his agenda was.

He's changed the federal judiciary for a generation. Anyone who knows how America works knows that the judiciary is the single most critical element of real and true change. He focused on the economy and did what Obama could never do; gave hope to people and consumer confidence is the most important part of that. Where Obama never had a year of 3% growth, Trump did it quickly. Unemployment fell, people went back to work and with the tax bill, the next two years will roar at levels unseen since the late 90's tech boom.

On the foreign policy front he canceled our participation in the Trans-Pacific Partnership ensuring that our jobs would not be shipped overseas and got us out of the Paris Climate Agreement which would have cost us trillions. He began renegotiation of NAFTA, which was a disaster for American workers and even went so far as to cut the corporate tax rate to low not seen in decades. All this was done with a congress that was shell-shocked and poorly led. Most importantly, ISIS was exterminated from the land they held in 10 months through cooperation with the Kurds, Iraqi's and Russians. He also did what many red-blooded Americans have hoped for by giving the UN the finger. His single act of saying he was moving the embassy to Jerusalem exposed the hypocrisy of the vaunted body in mid-town Manhattan. On North Korea, he went right at the fat little dictator whom previous presidents only gave lip service to and then kicked the can down the road for the next POTUS.

So here we are. The African-American and Hispanic unemployment rates are at historic lows, the stock market is reaching new heights daily and consumer confidence is high. Amusingly, liberals are out of their minds and still raging about events that happened months ago while sputtering about today's latest tweet. Meanwhile Trump is transforming America for the foreseeable future. People in blue states will no longer allow taxes to be raised because they can no longer deduct them on their federal taxes. Blue states will have to rein in spending and if not, they will turn red.

This is all after just 11 months.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Saturday Morning News & Notes

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Happy weekend, y'all.

-This was a busy week in politics with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals rejecting the presidents appeal to re-instate the temporary ban from 7 nations who cannot properly vet their own people. The 9th Circuit is the most overturned appellate court in America so that won't stand for long. If opponents of Trump's plan actually paid attention to what he plans on doing, they would see it's a solid plan and one that will provide a measure of safety and security. Plus, all one needs to do is look at the example set by Germany. Angela Merkel welcomed refugees into Germany and spent a ton of political capital defending her actions. That turned out to be a really bad decision on many levels. She now is implementing policies more strict than what Trump has laid out.

-Trump supporters have been calm thus far (in spite of what you may have header on #fakenews CNN or MSNBC). While liberal fascists burn down stores, halt free speech and throw bricks and feces, those on the political right have sat back and just watched. Eventually, if things continue as they have this first month of the Trump administration, they will not be content to just sit by and take it. This is a warning and a statement of fact, those who elected Trump are a calm lot happy to make a decent paycheck, take a weeks vacation and go out to dinner one night a week. But there is also a predominance of alfa genes in the group and all it will take is one spark to set that fire. If events like this continue, I fear that blaze may begin sooner rather than later.

-Back during the Obama years, many federal agencies were stocking up on ammo--so much so that it affected supplies in some areas. The reason was never addressed by Obama and the issue faded. Well now it's back again. Why the hell does the National Park Service have hundreds let alone thousands of rounds of ammo stored? I guess the question now is why was it not protected from theft?

-Trump is meeting with Japanese PM Shinzo Abe this weekend. Japan is critical in the efforts to curtail Chinese ambitions in the region and Trump's warmness is a clear sign to Beijing that Trump is looking to strengthen our relationship with Tokyo. The US has numerous military bases throughout the Home Islands and Okinawa and they would be critical for any offensive efforts or in a defensive role.

-Expect word soon that we will be ramping up operations in Afghanistan soon. One General called our efforts in the 16-year was "stagnant". General Mattis is meeting with NATO leaders this week in Europe for talks on the situation.

-Chucky Schumer thinks he can stop Trump's Supreme Court nominee. Unfortunately for this sniveling weasel his predecessor left him some baggage to deal with--mainly the use of the nuclear option. Once Harry Reid pulled that out, it can't be put back and expect Mitch McConnell to invoke it for Gorsuch.

Thursday, February 09, 2017

We've Got Memes

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I stole them so you steal them as well.

Fucking Jodie

Be careful, it ain't like Call of Duty

Now that's an impressive arsenal

Tuesday, February 07, 2017

"Not Until the Boom"

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Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly spoke on the Hill today talking to the House and one of the topics was the temporary ban on the seven nations who do not have the infrastructure to properly vet their people immigrating or claiming refugee status in the US.

Kelly was blunt and told the panel that it's critical we have this ban in place and that the court order stopping it may well have allowed those who wish us harm to enter. When asked how would we know he said "not until the boom" which appeared to take some on the panel by surprise.

Do they not understand that is the reason Trump wants the ban in place? In the liberal mind Trump's only rational is that he hates Muslims and it never occurs to them that he is doing it to protect the nation because they refuse to admit to themselves that we have an enemy who wants to kill as many of us as they can.

In the days since a liberal judge ordered the ban halted, untold potential enemies may have entered. Will any of the prop who were against the temporary ban actually care. Will they comfort the husbands, wives, sons or daughters of the next attack? They no longer have Obama running interference for them by labeling the attacks as "workplace violence" or "a lunatic with a gun". If we get attacked again and it comes to light that they entered during this time period, I will blame liberals and excoriate them as I never have before.

Let's see what the Ninth Circuit rules tonight but make no mistake, by fighting this temporary ban, liberals have made America less safe and for anyone paying attention, the terrorists mostly hit the soft underbelly of America or more plainly, liberal cities.

Video available here as is the full transcript.

Monday, February 06, 2017

Monday Night News & Notes

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Tom Brady is the best ever. End of argument. He's in the pantheon of greats along with Gretsky, Jordan, Howe, Griffey Jr. and Walter Payton.

Here's what's new in the world:

-Apparently the Hamas explosives guru wasn't that careful around explosives.

-Trump and Mattis need to address this immediately. When half of the strike fighters can't fly due to money, they are nothing but expensive paperweights.

-The world is moving to the right. Le Pen, Brexit, Trump and now Temer in Brazil.

-The Iraqi army is leaving ISIS fighters bodies in the street to rot as a warning and lesson. No matter how far into the future we go, the middle east will always be tribal and vicious.

-Example #298,742 why Trump was elected.

-Did you know the Patriots winning was due to White Supremacy? Me neither but apparently the SJW's believe that to be the case. I watched the game and I saw quite a few black men playing in the white jerseys. Is it possibly because the Patriots field a majority white receiving corps? I don;t know, I guess I'm just not smart enough to see race issues everywhere and in everything. I just enjoyed watching a good game.

-China believes they have reached the point they could surpass the US for sea supremacy in the South China Sea. I'm guessing once Mattis gets the Navy back to a sharp edge, China will learn that they are not yet at that point.

-I'm by no stretch a Lady Gaga fan but her performance was excellent. I thought I'd miss it coming home from the party I was at but I saw it all and she killed. It ranked up there with Prince and Michael Jackson in my humble opinion.