Thursday, May 05, 2016

How to Get Up from a Fall (for the weak or elderly)

My mom fell a few days ago, and we had trouble getting her up. I wish I had watched this video before our different attempts to help her up. I am going to show my mom and dad this video as well as recommend it to my older friends.


Cruz and Reagan's 1976 Pattern: Don't Endorse, Campaign or Vote for Trump

Reagan and Ford at the 1976 Republican Convention
Ronald Reagan set an interesting pattern in pursuing the nomination in 1976 and with his after convention actions. 

Reagan picked a vice-presidential candidate before the convention, Richard Schweiker, to increase his chances of winning against President Gerald Ford. It didn't work, but was an interesting and clever way of changing the campaign dynamic.

Arguably, Cruz did a better job with the tactic in choosing Carly Fiorina before the convention this year. Carly Fiorina is really good enough to be President--smart, accomplished, articulate, charismatic. Schweiker was a sort of run-of-the mill politician. Both pre-convention VP choices had the same outcome. Reagan and Cruz lost.

After losing the nomination, Reagan was induced to give a speech at the convention. Here's what happened:
"I was at that convention and remember President Ford’s acceptance speech.
"It was classic Ford: a little dull and monotone. Ultimately, Reagan was called out of the gallery to address the convention. Some Reagan supporters believe Ford did that in the hope Reagan would embarrass himself by speaking without a script. But Reagan had prepared to address the convention and delivered his acceptance speech. It was couched in the context of where our country should go. It was substantive and vibrant and delivered with the passion Reagan brought to his best speeches. At its conclusion, Reagan endorsed the Republican platform but not Ford.
"The substance of what he did was not missed by anyone. David S. Broder, the highly regarded Post columnist, later wrote that the 1976 Republican convention was unique in political history, because it was the only time the delegates heard two acceptance speeches. Reagan later declined all pleas from Ford to speak on his behalf in key states."
Trump and Cruz at 2016 debate
Further, neither Ronald nor Nancy Reagan voted for Ford in 1976.
"Stunningly, Ronald Reagan declines to vote for the office of the presidency. He cannot bring himself to cast a ballot for Gerald R. Ford. Neither can Nancy, whose disdain for Betty Ford was clear throughout the Republican convention." (Killing Reagan, O'Reilly and Dugard, p. 115)
Of course, Reagan did this to a man much more honorable, decent and accomplished than Donald Trump.

Reagan came back to a stunning win in 1980. Ted Cruz, Carly Fiorina and Scott Walker need to pay attention to this pattern.

Update: Neither should they openly oppose Trump. They should campaign for other Republicans and for Republican platform positions, but don't address Trump or his policies specifically.
"However, on this day, Ronald Reagan is not a loyal Republican. He has been bitter since the convention, avoiding showing any overt support for Gerald Ford. Later this afternoon he will write a letter to a supporter in Idaho, stating that he has campaigned for Ford in twenty-five states and sent a million letters to back the president's campaign.
"But this will be disingenuous. Ronald Reagan did not take losing easily. He has refused to appear in public with Gerald Ford or even to be photographed with the president. Reagan's many campaign speeches were pro-Republican, but focused only on politicians who'd endorsed him during the primaries. Worst of all, in the final days of the campaign, at a time when Ford desperately needed Reagan to make a last-minute swing through the South to secure conservative votes, the governor flatly refused." (Killing Reagan, pp. 114-115)

Wednesday, May 04, 2016

I Did My Best, But Indiana Was in La-La Land

Over 1.2 million Indiana voters selected candidates who care nothing about the Constitution. (see chart below)

Fortunately, the Founders of the country set up a system that is hard to shake up. It takes many, many elections to do it or something like 3/4ths of the country being in favor of it. (see Article V of the Constitution)

The Constitution also makes it hard for raving political movements to gain much traction. President Obama had a majority in the House and 60% of the Senate for two years and only got Obamacare through during that time. After that, even though Republicans gained a majority in the House in 2010 and added a majority in the Senate in 2014, they proved utterly feckless as did the politically isolated President. It was pretty much gridlock on getting anything new through.

Checks and balances have worked superbly in the last eight years as well as throughout the country's history. For this reason, I am basically back to my popcorn/easy chair stance on the election.

All best regards to Indiana and shake things up voters.

New York Times graphic

Tuesday, May 03, 2016

Jake Tapper on Trump's Charge: Shameful!

This is how decent people respond to Donald Trump.

And why CNN is beating Fox News in the coveted 25-54 demo.
CNN was the No. 1 cable news network of the week in A25-54. This is only the third time CNN has won three consecutive weeks in the last 15 years. CNN finished No. 14 in prime time and Fox News finished No. 18 in all of basic cable last week.

Reagan: A Time for Choosing 1964

A good reminder about supporting what's right and good even if it loses the election.

Monday, May 02, 2016

Trump: Shoot at Russian Jets; Knight: He'd Drop Nuclear Bombs

Well, Donald Trump's foreign policy gets more and more interesting. Seems like Ted Cruz's joke that a Trumpertantrum might result in waking up one morning and finding that a President Trump had nuked Denmark isn't that farfetched.

Last week, while Trump was looking on appreciatively, Bobby Knight said that Trump would have the guts to drop the bomb as Harry Truman did saving "billions (sic*) of lives". Of course, we had been at all out war with Japan for three years before that and had lost over 110,000 killed or missing in action and a quarter of a million wounded. But, hey, why bring context up? (Interestingly, Ronald Reagan had an utter aversion to using nuclear weapons and worked to abolish them. Which may be why he was able to win the Cold War by economic means without firing a shot.)

Today, Trump said Russian planes that barrel roll over U.S. Air Force planes should be shot at "at a certain point".
“But I don’t know, at a certain point, you can’t take it,” the businessman continued. “I mean, at a certain point, you have to do something that, you just can’t take that. That is not right. It’s against all, you know, when you talk about Geneva convention, there’s gotta be things that are against it. You can’t do that. That’s called taunting.
. . .
“And if that doesn’t work out, I don’t know, you know, at a certain point, when that sucker comes by you, you gotta shoot,” Trump said. “You gotta shoot. I mean, you gotta shoot. And it’s a shame. It’s a shame. It’s a total lack of respect for our country and it’s a total lack of respect for Obama. Which as you know, they don’t respect.”
Wait, didn't Trump say the Geneva Convention was the problem?

And taunting is bad? How about torture? And killing the families of terrorists?

Maybe instead of shooting, we could "taunt" back or even use economic tools. Something a little more creative than shooting. But, then this is the guy who believes protesters should be taken out on a stretcher. So, why would he think of using brain power rather than brute force.
*The commentator and text say "millions of lives", but Knight said "billions". Knight is obviously as careful with his war policy suggestions as he is with his facts.

Cruz vs. Trump on Rape

Since 1990, when at Princeton, Senator Ted Cruz has been an anti-rape activist.
During his years at Princeton University, Cruz spearheaded efforts to fight date rape at the school. In an exclusive interview with Business Insider, he said his focus on the issue was in part inspired by a dark chapter in his family history.
"When I was in student government in college, protecting student safety was a real priority, and no student should ever have to face the threat of sexual assault," Cruz said in an email to Business Insider. "In my own family, my aunt experienced terrible abuse in prison in Cuba, and that made protecting women from assault all the more personal."
That sensitivity toward sexual assaults against women has continued in his time in the U.S. Senate where he was one of only 14 Republicans to vote for
a bill from Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-New York) designed to make it easier to prosecute cases of sexual assault in the military.
"It's why I'm working hand-in-hand with Sen. Gillibrand to pass sexual assault legislation for the military, and it's a major reason why I've spent so much of my career supporting law enforcement and seeking to bring criminals to justice," Cruz said.
Only two years later, 1992, Donald Trump was blaming Mike Tyson's rape victim:
“You have a young woman that was in his hotel room late in the evening at her own will. . . . You have a young woman seen dancing for the beauty contest—dancing with a big smile on her face, looked happy as can be.”
“It’s my opinion that to a large extent, Mike Tyson was railroaded in this case[.]”

And, of course, even today Trump loves that he's endorsed by "tough" guy Tyson.

H/T M B House