Friday, April 22, 2011

Oh my God - I think he’s really running

Through a number of news programs and articles recently I think that Donald Trump is actually running for president of the United States.  What started out as a harmless prank is now becoming frightening reality.  I’m not laughing Donald – it ain’t funny anymore.  

Thursday I heard Trump say that we should just take Iraqi oil.  Now I’ve said that after 5 or 6 drinks, but I wouldn’t say it to a news reporter on National television.  While it may be attractive to imagine that we are in the 18th Century and we can simply overwhelm a country or portion of the world and extract the wealth without regard to the indigenous population – what message does that send about America in the Twenty-first century?  His statements are useless bravado and nothing more. 

Trump says he will slap a 25% tariff on Chinese goods.  Who exactly does Trump think will pay that tariff?  The Chinese?  Businessman Trump doesn’t seem to understand the basics of business.  The Smoot-Hawley Act that raised tariffs on 20,000 different imported goods in 1930 and was largely blamed for accelerating the economic downturn of 1929 that became a Depression.  People pay those tariffs and other taxes – not countries and not corporations.  Trump should know better – apparently he isn’t an historian either.

I guess I should be grateful.  When compared to Donald Trump, Tim Pawlenty looks absolutely brilliant. 

Courage to Stand: An American Story 


  1. If people have to pay a tariff on Chinese goods, they might decide to just buy American. Allowing cheap crap to come in free just encourages people to buy cheap crap. Tariffs are supposed to give your companies an advantage over foriegn companies. Free trade is BS and it needs to stop. That doesn't mean we should let American unions set outrageous labor prices. Chinese costs should go up, and American costs need to go down.

    That said, I don't want Trump for President. A man who can't go bald gracefully can't be graceful in any other area either.

  2. 10th - Free Trade is now and always will be the best option. Tariffs don't work and we prove it everytime we impose them. We only lose where government get involved in trying to "fix" something.

    You are however right about Trump.

  3. Naturally we Americans would be paying the 25%. The problem with Chinese products is that the people earn mere pennies per hour compared to even our lowest labor. American manufacturers have the additional costs of insurance, environmental and labor laws (federal, state and local). The Chinese don't have those costs hence the low costs of their products.

    Having an open market with China is stupid. The trade inbalance is the problem. If China purchased more from the US then the issue would be mute.

    Yes, it cetainly looks like Trump will take the plunge. That in itself is sad. Trump is leading in GOP polls? So how weak is everyone else's message?

    The fact is that Zero now has a record which he didn't have before. ANY candidate from our side should be able to bash him with his abysmal record and win provided that the message is articulated.

    Straight in your face attacks against Zero's record is the receipe. Trump has shown the GOP that is the method that resonates with the voters. The question is will the other hopefuls jump in or just watch.

    If they need talking points we could right a list starting with:

    1) apologizing for America's arrogance to the world.
    2) bowing to 3rd world dictators
    3) not supporting Iran's protestors
    4) 9 day delay in responding the BP oil spill
    5) his adpotion of EVERY Bush policy which he ran against
    6) Not lifting the drilling moratorium and defying court order.
    7) ObamaCare and defying court order
    8) Sueing Arizona instead of dealing with the border.
    9) 60% of all US casualties in Afghanistan are Zero's
    10) the war in Libya
    11) Where is the stimulous money?
    12) 5 TRILLION in additional debt

    That's just for starters, I could go on.

    Trump isn't the problem. The problem is the milktoast GOP and a shitty message. It's time to play offense. You as a military man know that you don't win a war by playing defense.

  4. Ahhh - the dreaded double standard. China is a trading partner who buys $500 Billion of our stuff every year. Open (free) trade is the life-blood of a capitalist economy. I love it when people demand socializing our market-based economy so Americans can build kazoos and plastic shoes instead of Chinese children.

    Unions destroyed the American textile, automobile, steel, etc. industries and what the unions didn't destroy the government finished off (the last incandescent light bulb factory closed down recently). China is the very least of our problems.

    The GOP field is weak to be sure - that might coax someone out of the wood work to save us from lunatic Trump if nothing else. I think that if history is any indication - whoever is the front runner 17 months out will not be on the ballot in November 2012.

  5. 10th seemed only to comment on the price of foreign goods but did not mention the other reason Americans originally preferred to buy foreign goods - because they were better made. As consumers, we were not only looking for a way to buy goods a lower prices but American workers did not produce quality products. Between union strikes, demanding better working conditions, not giving a rip about the quality of their work or smoking dope on the breaks, American quality went down the tubes. I am a patriot and would love to buy American but I still drive a Honda because it is better than anything the Americans can turn out. I'd love to see Americans take pride in what they do again. I think the last time that happened was during World War II.

  6. I'd like to make two points. First, the reason that Trump scores so well in recent polls is that the far-right of the GOP has driven out the more moderate [sensible] candidates. Those candidates understood that they didn't have a chance in the early primaries because those primaries and caucuses are dominated by far-right elements.

    Apparently today's GOP has forgotten the lessons that the Democrats learned in the 60's- that a swing to the edges of the spectrum brings political disaster.

    Trump's birther nonsense appeals to these wing elements. Pawlenty's sensibility and intelligence does not. That's why I predict that Pawlenty will not go very far.

    Secondly, there was a list prepared by Hardnox- 12 points that he feels will doom Obama. Sadly, that list appeals to only the far-right, a group that already hates him and will not vote for him anyway.

    Presidential elections are determined by the independent, swing voters, not the to party wings. These voters don't give a rat's ass about any of those 12 points raised by Hardnox. They are interested in the ECONOMY.

    If the GOP tries to run on any other topic than the economy, then Obama will win in a landslide. I suggest to Hardnox and others on the far-right to crumple up that 'list' and select a candidate that will deal with REAL issues, REAL problems with this nation.

  7. Muck Rake –

    Thank you for your visit and comment. Based on your specifically expressed biases at your site I think that your visits will make for a lively discussion.

    I love the accusations of the “far right.” Who exactly are the “far right?” Trump is decidedly not “far right.” We’ve been exposed to Trump’s bombast for years now and he is at best a “moderate” Republican. I have always thought that the birth certificate issue was a red herring and one that Obama allowed to exist for some political advantage. He appears to have played that card today in order to discredit Trump who is savaging Obama’s ignorant policies in the media.

    Liberals would have you believe the “far right” are violent Nazis (creatures of the political left actually) or worse. The further right you travel in the political spectrum the more people want to be left alone by government. This is the home of the conservative whose beliefs are rooted in natural law, tradition, and here in the United States the Constitution and Declaration of Independence. Further – and based on your reference to “Jesus pimps” you really won’t like this – in the American tradition our Christian underpinnings are particularly important.

    Trump does not score well with the right-wing of the electorate (where I reside) rather he scores well with populist sentiment that is temporary rather than informed by deeply held beliefs on the right or the left. While you are correct in observing that the non-affiliated voters in the middle (“Independents”) do tend to provide the winning mass that turns elections they poll as more conservative than most people give them credit for. We are a right of center country.

    The electorate is moving closer and closer to Hardnox’s list. The stifling government, crushing debt, left-wing slush fund (“Stimulus”), failure to secure our borders, and the amateurish foreign policy will bring down this President in 2012. Left-wing hatred of America and her values makes Obama incapable of addressing our problems – it just isn’t in his DNA. That’s why he is so gaff-prone – his first instinct is always wrong. Obama is enamored with the trappings of power, but doesn’t really like his job. Being President isn’t what he thought it would be – it is constrained and temporary unlike the offices held by his heroes and mentors who are for the most part dictators. But he does get to play some really great golf courses.

    The mantra for 2012 may once again be “It’s the economy stupid.” The left has never had a winning economic strategy. That is exactly why though Obama inherited a blank check and a huge political advantage in the House and Senate – he took an ailing economy and made it worse with every action he took. There is no evidence that he ever took Economics 101 and he is proving to be a poor student of experience.

    The challenge for Republicans as Hardnox points out is to be bold and attack these failing policies head on. While the economy is certainly the central failing of the Obama presidency, unfortunately it isn’t his only failing. This President is making Jimmy Carter look Presidential and I didn’t think anyone could do that.

  8. Liberals would have you believe the “far right” are violent Nazis (creatures of the political left actually) or worse.

    I must disagree. I use the phrase 'far right' to denote a position on the political spectrum. If the spectrum is numbered from 1-7, 4 being middle, then the far right would be #7; the far left #1. There is no other inference about 'these people' except where they lie on the spectrum [ not the Asperger's spectrum].

    I must further disagree with your 2nd assertion, The electorate is moving closer and closer to Hardnox’s list. By 'the electorate' do you mean that 10% middle, the ones who swing slightly left or right each presidential election? If so, I cannot fathom that they give a damn about the war, Libya, Arizona, "apologizing" or Iran's protesters. That stuff is nothing but political blather and these folks in the middle cut through that BS like a hot knife in butter.

    The want to see jobs, a secure housing market, and enough money in their pockets to have a little fun. It is really all about the economy.

    How about that live birth certificate today? The Donald will have to do a lot of spinning to get back his 'reputation.'

    When you said of Obama, "There is no evidence that he ever took Economics 101 and he is proving to be a poor student of experience," the economics training is apparently of little value in the White House. After all, GW Bush had an MBA from Harvard Business School. Need I say more?

    By the way, thank you for allowing my comments to be published. Hardnox and several others moderate [block] my comments. What was it that GW Bush said, "There ought to be limits to freedom."

  9. Like all conservatives - I'm all about freedom. Keep it respectful and clean - and there will be no need to block or delete comments. As George Bush knew the limits on your freedom are described by the scope of our freedom. Your freedom stops where it encounters mine – at that point we have to negotiate. Your freedom doesn’t trump my freedom. You are also not free to be libelous or insulting. That was the meaning of George Bush’s words – but then I assume you already knew that – if not you should.

    Your namesake “Muck Rake” would indicate you are on a quest for truth – you will find it here.

    The use of the term “far right” is generally used by liberals to denote an extreme point of view or an extremist. Nothing could be further from the truth – the most benign person would be one from the “extreme right.” However virtually all political violence is committed by the left. An extremist from the left is a vile and exceptionally vicious person generally. If by “far right” you meant John Adams, Ronald Reagan, or George Washington then we are cool. They are all a “7.”

    Many of the today’s political philosophies try to disguise the fact that Communists, Nazis, and Liberals are all cousins politically speaking and live in the same zone on your political spectrum chart. Stalin, Mao, Hitler, and Mussolini were all a “1” while FDR, Wilson, and Obama are each a “1.5.” Hillary Clinton is a “2” on several scales.

    You have every right to disagree with my opinion that voters are moving our way. It’s useless to argue about it – we’ll both know who is right on the morning of 7 November 2012.

    George Bush’s MBA lead directly to six robust years of economic growth and increased government revenue year-over-year in an extremely difficult environment. The Democrats blocked efforts by Republicans that started in 2003 to prevent the implosion of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac which lead to the current fiscal crisis. Remember Barney Frank’s assertion that they were a sound as could be? Bush’s ability to deal with the crisis was throttled by a hostile Congress beginning in January of 2007. If we had someone as “dumb” as George W. Bush in the White House beginning in January 2009 there would have been no stimulus bill, no hyper-deficit spending, no Obamacare, and the jobless rate would have topped out at 7 or 8% and would have headed back down. Oh – and we probably wouldn’t be bombing Libya.

    If you want to see jobs, a secure housing market, and have a little mad money to have fun with – it’s easy – vote Republican and get all your friends to do that too.

    As for Trump – he’s a lunatic – he doesn’t have a “reputation” to recover.

  10. Amigo,

    Good retort.

    I see mud rake is still whining about my not posting his garbage. Mud has done this on several blogs that I frequent. I think he’s stalking me. Maybe I should be flattered but I'm worried that he might be gay.

    Polite discourse is always welcome. I have a “No Trolls” warning on my blog which he violated. The reason I will not publish his posts is that I refuse to provide him a forum for which to spew his hatred. He has his own silly blog for that.

    As far as us mud’s labeling us as "extremists"... for the record we are Americans that actually believe and revere our Constitution (anathema to liberals like mud) and like you Amigo am REAL PROUD of that label. We have lots of company.

    The screams from the left get louder each day as the window of opportunity closes on their bullshit ideas. The American people are awake to their agendas and they are not taking it anymore.

    I often asked liberals two questions:

    1)“if liberal programs are so great why are they not embraced universally instead of being forced on everyone”.

    2)“name ONE just ONE liberal program that has been successful”


  11. Hardnox got all puffed-up on a recent comment, attempting to 'scare' me by listing his physical statistics. Wow. Apparently it was meant to warn me, like a school yard bully, that he could come after me or some other juvenile antic typical of adolescence.

    Yet, like Donald Trump, he’s a lunatic – he doesn’t have a “reputation” to recover.

    Common Sense- of course you and I will disagree about politics because we occupy different places on the political spectrum. Yet, that fact need not stop us from engaging in conversation. I quite enjoy engaging the 'other side' so that I can try to understand what they stand for and where they are going.

    May I first ask you, and the question might surprise you- what kind of conservative are you? cultural, fiscal, libertarian, social...? It is important to me because the term 'conservative' these days may represent several distinct ideologies.

    I am not a flaming liberal, if that is a 'category' of liberalism. Rather, I am a social liberal, perhaps #3 on my gradient. I inherited my values from my grandfather, an immigrant from Germany, who fled his homeland during the reign of Bismarck. He believed, as do most Western European nations, in the social welfare fabric. During the Great Depression my grandfather wrote letters to his family back in Germany telling them of the terrible conditions here and berating the government for not taking care of its citizens.

    That's part of my story. Yours?

  12. Mud,
    Once again you hurl insults. The reply that you refer to was not to you as you claim but as a typical flaming liberal you made assumptions. How quaint you are.

    How about an adult reply to the subject at hand? Too much for you?

  13. My friend Hardnox doesn’t approach the difference between conservatism and liberalism (progressive, socialist, democrat, whatever) as an academic exercise. We are both business owners and we feel it directly in our pocket. Since there has never been a liberal program that has actually worked or a tax that liberals haven’t fallen in love with – they are the natural enemy of all Americans. Further it isn’t just about money but rather the very real encroachment on and abridgment of our rights as Americans. Again – it has gone beyond an academic exercise. At some point even the most obtuse liberal has got to recognize the carnage that they have left in the wake of their good intentioned yet badly conceived policies.

    To answer your question directly, I would say that I am a natural American conservative. My conservatism is informed by my degree in history, my Christian faith, my life experience, family upbringing, and innate common sense. I spent 22 years in the United State Marine Corps, ten years in the telecommunications business, and the last four years as a small business owner. I believe in freedom and individual responsibility.

  14. At some point even the most obtuse liberal has got to recognize the carnage that they have left in the wake of their good intentioned yet badly conceived policies.

    Tell me more about this curious hypothesis. I really don't understand what the 'carnage' is that you reference. Could you expand on this?

  15. That is a very long list. It begins with President Woodrow Wilson who gave us the gift of the Federal Reserve, Federal Trade Commission, and Income Taxes. He presided over an explosion in the size and scope of government stifling trade and business activity pitching the American economy into a depression.

    He ran for a second term with the mantra that he kept us out of World War I and then promptly got us into that war - he needed a couple hundred thousand casualties to get a seat at the table and force the first completely useless international debating body on the world (The League of Nations). Along with the other knot-heads at Versailles he helped plant the seeds for World War II.

    Like all liberals he tried to stifle debate against his socialist policies with the Espionage act of 1917 and followed it up with the Sedition act of 1918. He was pro-labor union adding that to the chaos he was creating in the market place. He set up a propaganda office (Nazi Joseph Goebbles used it as a model in Germany later) that was designed to delude the nation about what he was actually doing. He also tried his hand at censorship to discourage debate.

    Socialists made great inroads into the government during his administration.

    Wilson was the first modern Democrat (progressive, socialist liberal, whatever). The entirely negative impact of his regime is still being felt today as bureaucracies never seem to shrink.

    That is the damage done by one Democrat President with a free hand from a Democrat Congress. That appears bad until you get to Franklin Delano Roosevelt who was the single most destructive President in our history. That of course is saying a great deal when you consider the utter destruction wreaked on America by Lyndon Bains Johnson. Remember the "war on poverty?" We lost and it is estimated that we have flushed at least $7 Trillion dollars down the toilet.

    I could go on for pages - but you should get the point. If you don't - we are wasting our time as you never will.

    As Harnox and I have pointed out - there are no liberal success stories only chaos and waste.

  16. Thank you for this history lesson, but I expected you to tell me what effect this 'liberal' policy had on you, personally. I never expected a history lesson that reached back to Wilson.

    Of course you and I will never agree on any of this as we come from two different cuts of cloth, yet hopefully we can politely debate.

    What about the past two decades? Do you find that 'liberal carnage' is greater than conservative carnage? Further, is the 'carnage' that you reference human life? If so, how did you react in May 2003 to Bush 43's preemptive war on Iraq? You referred above that Wilson needed a couple hundred thousand casualties to get a seat at the table. What did you think of the causalities emanating from GW Bush's adventure in Iraq?

    Perhaps your reference to 'carnage' did not refer to death during war, although LBJ contributed greatly to these deaths in Vietnam. Yet it appears that your disdain of Johnson was not over an actual war, but rather his so-called 'war on poverty.' Did I get the correct war?

    If I may ask, how did this war on poverty affect your life here in 2011? I keep coming back to the present because, after all, we do live in the here and now. Is your current financial situation and/or your future financial prospects in any way diminished by Johnson's War on Poverty some half-century ago? In other words, how has that impacted your life here in late April 2011? Where is the 'waste' that you continually reference?

  17. I started with Woodrow Wilson because he is the first modern Democrat (again progressive, socialist, liberal - it's all the same). History is important because as we have told you Liberals have never had a successful program - everything they have done is contradictory to free market capitalism, freedom, and common sense. Two weeks after tax day is a poor time to ask me how Wilson and Democrats effect my life.

    These various schemes by liberals are not unfathomable - people have tried to point out that they would not work at the time. Think of the stimulus package, cash for clunkers, and Obamacare - all spectacular failures. Those things just put a couple of trillion dollars right into the National debt - for no good purpose and they were completely counter productive.

    But liberals say "We don't want a history lesson - trust us." We don't have to disagree - these are empirical facts - liberal "solutions" don't work. They never have and they never will. For you or anyone else to say that Wilson's Federal Reserve was a good idea after Bernanke just monetized $900 Billion of our debt debasing our currency and driving up the cost of everything - think about that - because of what he did EVERYTHING - is more expensive. Does that effect my life? Your life? I love tomatoes - particularly the Roma style. Last year I could buy them for $0.99 a pound - I paid $2.79 a pound for them this week. Are liberals screwing up my life? what do you think?

    Wilson is an easy one to pick on because we know beyond a shadow of a doubt how he ravaged America. Most liberals are sensitive about Obama right now even though it is clear that he will go down in history as being the worst President of the 44.

    As they say - If you voted for Obama in 2008 to prove you weren't a racist; You have to vote for someone else in 2012 to prove you aren't stupid."

    Your attempt to divert with George Bush and his preemptive war in Iraq is instructive. Look back on how Bush took this nation to war in Iraq. It took months, he built a 30 nation coalition, he was fortified by 17 UN resolutions and still went back for one more to define the deadline for Saddam Hussein, and most importantly he sought the approval of Congress before hostilities. A tour de force on how to take America to war the right way. Now - contrast that with how Obama took the Nation to war in Libya. He got stampeded into war by three bloodthirsty harpies who know nothing about war, did talk to anybody, and appears to have been dragged into it by France, Britain, and the Arab League - when did we start working for them?

    Your mind is no doubt inserting charges about not finding WMD and the Niger Yellow cake issue. But focus instead on the the process - the most important thing that a President does is decide whether or not to risk America's sons and daughters by sending them (or not) to war. The President's first responsibility is as Commander-in-chief. We are a nation of laws.

    Don't get lost in anything else - focus like a laser on the process with which a President (43 and 44) took the Nation to war.

    Answer this before you do anything else - which President did it right? G.W. Bush or B.H. Obama?

  18. Whew! I just read all of that, and I commend you for not going DI on this guy. He is attempting to make real arguments, but he is obviously unarmed. "What did libs do to you today?" Are you serious? I bought gasoline today. It was 9 cents more than yesterday, because of the new money in circulation. Thanks, libs. I bought some strawberries yesterday, about 2 miles down the road from my house. I bought them about 100 feet from where they were grown, for $3 a pound. They were deliscious. I was in Wal-Mart today, where strawberries were $1.50 pound. You may think thats a better deal, but Uncle Sam took two dollars out of my pocket to give for that pound of strawberries. He took two dollars out of yours too. Neither of us bought those strawberries, even though we had already paid for more than half of them. Thanks, libs. That particular scam goes on and on.

    Jeans in Wal-Mart were $10. Thats pretty cheap. But wait. If you grow at least 5 acres of cotton, Uncle Sam will pay you $100,000. Then you get to sell the cotton. We taxpayers already paid for those jeans, even if we didn't take them out of Wal-Mart. Thanks, libs.

    I could go on, but I have to get up early to go out and slave away for the masters in DC.

  19. Common Sense- Thank you for your comment. I'd like to begin with 'tomatoes' rather than war. I'm sure the tomatoes gig was a joke and, as such, I will just smile and move on.

    Neither Bush nor Obama are 'right.' The U.S. Constitution gives no permission for a president to order a preemptive war. Of course, what is 'war' may be a question worth perusing, if you care to. Our last 'declared war' was WWII; all others have been some military action.

    As you are a veteran, I'd like to ask your opinion on whether presidents should order our Military onto foreign soil if they 'suspect' that there is something awry? Look at how often our presidents have sent our Military [often the Marines] onto foreign soil for spurious reasons or ideological whims. Presidents of both parties, Republican and Democrat, have done that without declarations of war. Surely, you will not state the the times that a Republican president did it was 'right' while the times that the Democrat did was 'wrong' will you?

    As the main topic of our conversation has been about money, specifically Federal spending, and as you are a Veteran, are you in favor of cutting the budget of the Defense Department? The latest Newsweek issue had an article titled, "How to Save a Trillion Dollars." The premise was that the Department of Defense does not need the $700 billion annual budget because it is bloated with programs and inventory that is no longer needed to 'keep us safe.'

    The article purports a savings of $1 trillion with these cuts: $15 billion in aircraft carriers; $500 billion by use of unmanned aircraft; $60 billion by shrinking missile defense; $287 billion by reducing global presence of our military; $112 billion trimming spy spending. What do you think? By the way, the article states that public tax dollars for defense costs each person in America $2700. That's a lot of Roma tomatoes.

    Imagine, if you will, how much money each person in America could realize if these asinine wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were ended and our troops were sent home. The great political debate now raging in DC about budget cuts and tax increases would fade away like snow in April.

    The Preamble to the U.S. Constitution has the line, "to provide for the common Welfare." Of what value to our 'welfare' are military excursions like Afghanistan and Iraq when, at home, people are losing their jobs, their houses and their savings? Our gas prices jumped to $4.15 yesterday. It is $5 in California. Do you think that the average American gives a rat's ass about the Taliban in Afghanistan or the Sunnis in Iraq?

    They are worried about making their shrinking dollars pay for food, the mortgage, clothes, gas, and othe living expenses.

    So, if you can- if you disagree with me about the need to continue our presence in these two Asian countries- is the 'general Welfare' of the citizens of this nation being served by continuing these military excursions with the enormous Defense Department allotments? Or would the citizens be better served by having those trillions flow back into the pockets of The People?

  20. Mud,

    The tomato story was completely factual. I do love tomatoes and if we become friends someday I will share my recipe for “Bob’s Salad” with you. The prices are real and they come from the same bin, in the same store, in my hometown. You asked for an example of how liberal (democrat, socialist, progressive) policies effected my life today and I gave you one. Roma tomatoes. That’s but one item – as I stated everything is more expensive today and the root of all evil is liberal policies.

    As for war – you don’t get away that easy. There has never been such a huge contrast between two Presidents as there is between G.W. Bush and B.H. Obama in the way they went to war. Put your unreasoning hatred of George Bush aside and focus on his job as President and his responsibility to the Nation with respect to Iraq. He did everything right – everything. Not one misstep, not one mistake, he didn’t step over a single line. On the other hand in taking us to war with Libya Obama did everything wrong.

    This is very important – if you can’t accept that, then I am completely wasting my time in engaging you in discussion. It doesn’t matter what source you consult – George Bush took us to war in a prudent and entirely legal manner. Obama has us involved in an area that is completely outside any reasoned national interest and he did it all wrong.

    Preemptive war is the lesson of Pearl Harbor and 9/11. We can never afford again to be complacent about our safety – there is nothing wrong with preemptive war. Bush wasn’t on a fishing expedition. While WMDs are the only thing that liberals can remember from those days they were not the principle rationale for war. Had 9/11 never occurred we would still have had to invade Iraq had Saddam Hussein followed the same course that he did.

    So I pose the question once again. Given the scope of Presidential responsibilities and the acceptable procedure for taking the Nation to war is it correct to state unequivocally that President George W. Bush did it right (Iraq) while President Barack H. Obama did it wrong (Libya)?

  21. Back to the tomatoes, first. I still regard your tomato example as a joke unless you can prove to me that the price at your vegetable stand is the direct result of 'evil liberal policies.' Just saying it does not make it so.

    My answer to your Bush/Obama question remains 'neither.' Neither the Libyan nor the Iraqi 'situation' was worth spending our blood treasure or out financial treasure. Thus, the premise of the question is wrong at the outset.

    Now, back to tax dollars. The traditional right-of-center theory of moving the national economy forward has been to reduce taxes, government regulations as well as lowering wages for workers. At the other end of the political spectrum, the left-of-center philosophy is fairly opposite of the three factors listed above.

    Traditional Democratic philosophy believes more in working for the rights of workers whereas traditional Republican philosophy centers itself on the rights of the business owner and investors. Did I get this generally correct?

    As both of these philosophies seem to be at odds with each other, will there ever be a common ground upon which compromise will work? Or will it assume stalemate- just as you and I will admit that neither of us will 'win' our debate?

    The upshot of it all, as far as politics is concerned, is the role of the government- that clearly is the only variable factor left for us to discuss here.

    Therefore I will return to taxes and finances because, at your first reply to me, you brought up Woodrow Wilson and the Federal Income Tax. In my last comment above, I wondered whether you believed that our tax dollars were spent wisely in the past decade or so- specifically the tax dollars that were spent on the two wars, Iraq and Afghanistan. After all, the financial 'pot' only holds x-number of tax dollars squeezed from The People.

    In other words, were the allotment of tax dollar expenditures for those two wars justifiable in an Economics 101 sense? Did we get the right 'bang' for our buck?

    As a small business owner, you surely are more learned than I regarding economics. You must be sure that your capital investments yield proper profits. So I ask you as a business person, was the use of those x-trillions of tax dollars a good investment for the economic stability of our nation? Or, on the other side of the coin, did that expenditure of x-trillions negatively impact our current economic stability? And if so, how badly?

    Had our governmental leaders opted for neither war [nor our week-long escapade in Libya] would their fiduciary responsibility to The People have been better served?

    Today the U.S. Debt hovers at $14 trillion. How did it get so large? Who authorized this type of spending? Your business, Common Sense, could never sustain a debt margin of that ratio. You would have quickly been bankrupt.

    My point, as I stated a few days ago, is that the Federal government has a fiduciary duty to manage the money collected from The People in a responsible way. I contend that the two wars now sucking the Federal Treasury dry were totally bogus expenditures and have contributed greatly to both the value of the U.S. dollar as well to the current U.S. Debt.

    I further engaged you on some spending cuts suggested by Newsweek which would trim a trillion dollars from the Defense Department budget. Had you considered this proposal? It seems to me that the recent so-called Ryan Plan called for zero cuts to the Defense Department. All but four Republicans voted for that plan in the House.

    Do you feel, as a retired military, that the defense needs of the U.S. in the 21st century require an entirely different tactical force than that of the 20th century? And if so, why do you suppose that the Republican members of the House believe that no changes need occur in our defense needs?

    What your opinion on all of this?

  22. Amigo,
    I was waiting for you to get to that point, although I remain impressed that you humored him that far. My patience isn't as generous.

  23. You fail Mud.

    To what does that refer?

  24. It appears, Common Sense, that you have opted out of this debate. I was surprised that you actually stuck it out this long. I will give you credit for two things that are quite uncommon in conservative blogs: you do not moderate comments and you actually engaged 'the other side.'

    Perhaps at a later date we can have another discussion.