Blocked China, bleeding Kansas, Missouri sanity, Michigan MAGA
A mixed bag in the news but overall, it's not awful.
Kansas is always going to be a “free soil” kind of state. As many state-level politically-motivated efforts to curb abortion were “triggered” when Roe v. Wade was overturned, Kansas put the issue to the voters, and the voters sided with Roe. Pro-life activists got the “Value Them Both” amendment to the Kansas state constitution on the ballot, where nearly two-thirds of voters decided to keep the existing law, which prevents the legislature from restricting first-term abortions.
As a firm believer in the pro-life cause, you might be surprised to learn that I have no problem with this result. The voters in Kansas have the right to decide how their state, which by the Tenth Amendment has the sovereignty to enforce police powers, regulates abortion. In fact, I think overall this result helps states like Georgia, where abortion is essentially illegal in all cases except by the “Plan B” prescription pills.
Why is this good? Because voters ultimately get to decide these issues. My brother Jay believes that only a national solution to the abortion question will work. He may be right—probably is right—but the problem is that for 50 years, the issue has been fossilized in legal stone by the Supreme Court and Roe. The fact that Kansas, which has always gone its own way, put the issues directly to the voters is a model for other states.
I think 97-plus percent of abortions are unnecessary, and given how our youth today struggle with even considering kids, are used as an emergency measure. The issue really is one of medical clinics and providers profiting off the removal, dissection, and sale of unborn fetuses. That’s a dark, ghoulish, and grotesque misuse of the medical profession, and not related to saving lives (when it is, then do it with a clear conscience). If the 97-percent of “procedure” based abortions were gone, I’ll be a happy pro-lifer, even if women take “Plan B” pills. Until enough states work out their own solutions to put the issue back to national policy (it will be many years, I think), Kansas offers a sane model of letting the voters decide.
“Eric” wins, the coward gets his way
If you haven’t heard, the cowardly simp who lives in his own private tax district (while Disney doesn’t anymore) endorsed “Eric” in the Missouri GOP primary for U.S. Senate. Now, “Eric” could mean Eric Greitens, the disgraced former governor who was forced to resign by a sex-and-money scandal that by comparison makes Ravi Zacharias look like Matthew McConaughey.
“Eric” could also mean Eric Schmitt, who won the primary to replace retiring Sen. Roy Blunt, out of 21 Republicans in the race. So “Eric” won, the voters picked a sane choice, though one somewhat aligned with the MAGA “America First” message. Trump thought he was being oh-so-clever, like a five-year-old who retorts “your mom” at being called a booger-eater.
Trump’s mixed record and Democrats own-goal
Trump had to resort to overtly stupid tricks (4D chess, people!) because overall, his record of endorsing winners is mixed. He lost in Georgia’s 6th CD, where Jake Evans went down in flames. Trump’s pick for Georgia governor, former Sen. David Perdue, was blocked at every road by the politically savvy and popular Gov. Brian Kemp, who pursued a strategy of “scorched earth” against Trump’s guy. The earth was indeed scorched.
Trump has won in Pennsylvania and Ohio with the political quack Dr. Oz for Senate and QAnon imbecile Doug Mastriano for governor. Trump’s guy Rep. Madison Cawthorn couldn’t think his way out of a self-checkout line, and lost to Chuck Edwards in North Carolina, but Ted Budd and Bo Hines did win for Senate and House nominations respectively.
Trump-endorsed Katie Arrington lost in South Carolina to the incumbent Rep. Nancy Mace.
And in Michigan, last night Trumpist John Gibbs ousted incumbent Rep. Peter Meijer, who voted for Trump’s impeachment. Gibbs’ win had the monetary assistance of the DCCC, according to Meijer’s op-ed published Monday.
This is not an insignificant amount of money for the Gibbs campaign, nor is it an insignificant act by Democrats. The DCCC’s ad buy was more than Gibbs raised over the entire duration of his campaign. It was also nearly 100x the support Donald Trump himself offered to Gibbs (a single $5,000 contribution from the Save America Super PAC). In other words, the Democrats are not merely attempting to boost a candidate over the finish line: They are subsidizing his entire campaign.
I don’t count Gibbs’ win as a win for Trump. I count it as a terrible strategy by Democrats to take a sane Republican out of the running to replace him with a Trumpist bot who they think they can beat. But now they’ve set up a straw race where they could lose, and end up with Gibbs in Congress. When it happens, we can call to commend them on an own-goal score.
David French provided the best encapsulation of what happened with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan. It’s behind a paywall, but it’s worth the price to read such clear prose. China could do nothing, because the U.S. Pacific Fleet, a real blue water navy, was right there.
Those three ships (along with their escorts) represent an immense amount of combat power. While the world knows the combat capabilities of an American fleet carrier and its air wing, fewer people understand the importance of both the America and Tripoli. The Tripoli is reportedly testing the viability of the so-called “lightning-carrier” concept, which can put as many as 20 F-35B fifth-generation fighters on each assault ship.
While I think President Joe Biden’s gaffe track is bad for American foreign policy, and the military’s navel-gazing can put us outside China’s OODA loop in a strategic sense, there is tremendous value in having a Big Stick and waving it as necessary. We can have all the internal political battles we want, but when China decides to dictate where an 80-year-old American can and can’t go, they can go stuff it.
And guess what? China sat by in their angst and did nothing, because there was really nothing they could do. We spoke softly, but the U.S.S. Ronald Reagan, America and Tripoli speak for themselves, very loud and clear.
I do worry about the vibe when China, Russia, and now Serbia and NATO-protected Kosovo are in a heightened state of angst. I worry that some anarchist idiot with no idea of what they are starting is going to go full Archduke Ferdinand and ignite something bad. I worry that America will put away our Big Stick and allow a small thing to enflame a great part of the world. And I worry that more young American men and women will have to die when the fire is out of control.
The Big Stick is a good doctrine, though many will see it as overly militant. I see it like carrying a concealed gun. There are those who carry one and secretly hope to be a Clint Eastwood character—a real-life “make my day.” The Kyle Rittenhouses of the world serve nobody’s best interests. But there are also those like Elisjsha Dicken, the 22-year-old who put 8 of 10 rounds on target to stop an active shooter in an Indiana mall two weeks ago. Having the capability, training, and equipment to stop evil before it takes innocent lives is important.
The U.S. is not always a force for good, when we decide to insert ourselves into foreign expeditionary wars for strategic political purposes: Vietnam, Grenada, Nicaragua, and yes, Iraq and 15 years too long in Afghanistan were arguably blunders that didn’t improve anything. Defending Kuwait, and preserving Sea Lines of Communication (SLOC) in the Western Pacific and Indian Ocean are both critically important for freedom around the world, as is the right of Taiwan’s citizens to self-determination.
It takes a very Big Stick to make that happen. And if you’ll allow me one off-color remark to end this, as my Uncle Abe used to say, “if the queen had balls, she’d be king.” Nancy Pelosi was a king this week, and she matched the Big Stick with her own.
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