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Rocking horse people eat marshmallow pies © Robert Sommers 2017

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

That big sinking feeling.

The New York Times has a rather emphatic editorial today, The most extreme Republican platform in memory. It bears reading.
...It is as though, rather than trying to reconcile Mr. Trump’s heretical views with conservative orthodoxy, the writers of the platform simply opted to go with the most extreme version of every position. Tailored to Mr. Trump’s impulsive bluster, this document lays bare just how much the G.O.P. is driven by a regressive, extremist inner core.
Mr. Trump’s anti-Muslim phobia and fantasy wall across the Mexican border are front and center, along with his protectionist views, which deny long-held positions of the party. No less alarming is a raft of planks that ideologues pushed through to banish any notion of moderation and present-day reality from the party’s credo.
This majority has triumphed in securing retrograde positions that include making no exceptions for rape or women’s health in cases of abortion; requiring the Bible to be taught in public high schools; selling coal as a “clean” energy source; demanding a return of federal lands to the states; insisting that legislators use religion as a guide in lawmaking; appointing “family values” judges; barring female soldiers from combat; and rejecting the need for stronger gun controls — despite the mass shootings afflicting the nation every week.
The platform also makes homophobia and the denial of basic civil rights to gays, lesbians and transgender people a centerpiece. It repudiates same-sex marriage, despite strong support for this constitutional right in the nation at large. The party invokes “natural marriage” and states’ rights for determining which bathrooms transgender people may use, and it defends merchants who would deny service to gay customers.
I would rather not wade into the fetid swamp of personality politics, I prefer to talk about the issues that concern me. The GOP platform is anathema to my core beliefs in almost every instance.

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© Robert Sommers 2016
Things are evidently so bad that even George Will is sounding objective and clear about the foolhardiness of the GOP position and his fear of a Trump at the helm. This editorial started running nationally on Sunday, GOP minds are at sea — but not the right one.
This week, the Republican Party will formalize its judgment that the Navy, the nuclear launch codes and other important things should be placed in the hands of someone not known for nuance, patience or interest in allies and collective security.
Americans, dismayed by two consecutive commanders in chief — the recklessness of one and the inconstancy of his successor — must now decide whether, and if so how and by whom, they want U.S. power to be projected.
In the South China Sea, says Secretary Carter, America must steel itself for "a long campaign of firmness, and gentle but strong pushback." This will require freedom of navigation assertions, involving naval and air operations that challenge, among other things, China's expansive claims to sovereignty over islands and waters far from its mainland.
If the next president does not conduct such operations with steady, measured skill, the result could be the collapse of America's position in the world's most populous, dynamic and perhaps dangerous region, or war. Is any of this on anyone's mind in Cleveland?
If you are the Republican standard bearer and your positions are so whacked out that George Will feels the need to call you out publicly, and Alex Jones becomes one of your convention spokesmen, when your only hope of victory is stoking the fires of the race war and engaging poorly educated and somewhat angry white people, I would say that your party is in serious trouble.

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The Lou Holtz endorsement is priceless. Vote for Trump because the man runs an awfully nice golf course and will do his best to keep the dreaded game of soccer away from America.
Become us” and learn English, Holtz reportedly urged recent arrivals to the U.S.
I don’t want to become you,” he said, as quoted by the Daily Beast. “I don’t want to speak your language, I don’t want to celebrate your holidays, I sure as hell don’t want to cheer for your soccer team!”
Holtz endorsed Trump ahead of the Indiana primary in May, but made no mention of the GOP candidate’s comments on immigrants when doing so. Instead, he applauded the “first class” quality of Trump’s properties.
“There are nothing but winners in Indiana,” he said in a Twitter video announcing his support. “The main reason I’m endorsing him: I played on his golf course, I stayed in his hotel. He does nothing but go first class in everything. He wants this country to be first class as well.”
I may not exactly be a history whiz but if my memory doesn't fail, the first language spoken in the Americas that was not a native american dialect was not English but in fact Spanish.

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