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Wednesday, August 5, 2020

The Gipper Takes No Guff



Friends, this week's Newsmaker Show whisks you from 1861, to 1914, to 1981 -- all in the blink of an eye.  Brian and I discuss Abraham Lincoln's fateful decision to impose an income tax in 1861, as the Civil War began.  In this way, as in so many others, the federal government tested the waters in 1861-65 for what would turn into its permanent and inexorable expansion in the 20th century.  Then Brian and I cover the German attack on the Belgian city of Liege in 1914, which, if it had gone a little more smoothly, might well have led to a quick German victory in the First World War.  Finally, in 1981, President Reagan fired striking air traffic controllers, landing a solid blow on the labor union movement from which it has never really recovered.

When we get to current events, Brian and I talk about the boneheadedness of big city mayors, who won't take any federal help in the battle against crime...or maybe I should say "crime," because the Democrats seem to have convinced themselves that it's all an illusion anyway.  We talk about the ongoing negotiations over additional stimulus measures, and why the Dems might be happy to let the American worker twist in the wind.  Finally, we ask the question on everyone's mind these days: which zero will Biden pick as his co-loser, or deputy loser, in 2020?  My money's still on Kamala.

Listen in and be informed!

14 comments:

  1. DR. NICK

    Why is your money on Kamala? My money is on Rice. But you know, it could be Michelle. Surprise!

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  2. Dr.Waddy from Jack: I hate to say this,having grown up in a staunch union family and being well aware of the onerous conditions which generated the great labor unions (even in the '60's the basic steel plant I worked in was noisy,dirty and dangerous): the unions overreached. Their constantly increasing demands, I think, did much to cost Buffalo it's vital heavy industry. Priority one was benefits and good work was disdained.

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  3. Dr.Waddy from Jack: Now when heads of public employee unions raise their fists and do their Big Bill Heywood imitations, unless they represent law enforcement employees,they lose me. Reagan gave them their due. Sorry, but workers protected by civil service law enjoy a great advantage that labor unions never had. And I know from personal experience that marxists wield much power in public employee unions and their main concerns lie outside of working conditions. I saw it first hand as a steward for a NY State union.

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  4. Ray, I regard Kamala Harris as the only credible candidate for VP that Biden has on his list. She has the resume to be President. Susan Rice? Marginal, I would say. UN Ambassador and NSC advisor are important jobs, but still a stretch. She's also knee-deep in the Trump-Russia morass. The rest of the ladies of color on Biden's wish list are laughably under-prepared to step into the Oval Office. For me, it's just process of elimination... That may be thinking too advanced for Biden, though!

    Jack, I agree: the unions had a purpose, and in some ways they still do, but they were captured by gangsters and Marxists, and now by super-gangsters and super-Marxists, i.e. Democrats. Unions representing workers fulfilling essential services are also prohibited from striking for a good reason. Reagan did what he had to do.

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  5. Dr.Waddy from Jack: A thought about the expansion of Federal power from the Civil War on in stages: I don't know of a reason to think that Lincoln foresaw the factors leading to the rise of the great dictatorships of the 20th century but it may well be that only a firmly united US saved the world then. Was the undoubted expansion of the federal gov't an unavoidable consequence of the change from "these United States" to " this United States" without which barbarism might have prevailed?

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  6. Dr.Waddy from Jack: London was bombed by Zeppelin airships and lumbering huge Gotha bombers in WWI; it was very shocking to the Brits since the capital of the world had never been bombarded. Several hundreds were killed. One could wonder what effect this had on Churchill, who during his interest exile sounded the tocsin against advancing German air power and was finally heeded,just enough and just in time,with world historically consequences.In that sense,perhaps the WWI bombings might be seen as having strategic results.

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  7. Dr Waddy and Ray from Jack: I too think Harris is the very probable choice for the reasons Dr. has expressed. Doting Joe is just playing "inclusiveness" games in the probably already mandated choice of his successor.

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  8. Jack: you ask some very profound questions! Was the centralization of power in federal hands necessary to keep the U.S. intact? I suppose, if the Civil War was necessary, then maybe so. Then again, a Union Army competently led probably could have disposed of the South in a matter of weeks...

    Good point that the "strategic" air raids of WWI, puny though they were, exercised an out-sized influence on interwar thinking. To my mind, the naive faith that developed between the wars in the omnipotence of air power seems...deeply irrational, but we humans are star-struck by technology at times.

    Jack, I'm gratified to hear that you expect Harris to get the nod as well. Biden seems to be playing footsie with Whitmer, but could he really pick a woman with less than two years of experience as a Governor? And a WHITE woman besides (ick!)? I doubt it.

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  9. Dr. Waddy from Jack: Yeah, if either Lee or Scott had taken the field for the Union at the start, might have gone down that way.Either of them would have bested the Johnston's or Beauregard and Jackson had yet to rise. But Scott did advocate the "Anaconda Policy" of slow strangulation of the South. Perhaps with Lee as his field commander he would have given the aggressive Lee a free hand.

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  10. Dr. Waddy from Jack:Now that whitmer has earned a reputation as a disdainful elitist cuomesque dictator,in a swing state,she could be good choice (for us). Mike Pence reminds me of Tom Reed and Tom has demonstrated his ability to make haughty, presumptuous lefties look like the brats that they are.

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  11. Agreed, Jack -- Whitmer comes with too much recent baggage, and she is too closely associated with the "lockdown everything" pandemic strategy that is a decidedly mixed blessing for the Dems. Her repugnant skin color combined with her relative lack of state-level AND national experience should suffice to finish her off, as far as Biden is concerned.

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  12. I was reading today that Biden has a close professional relationship with Susan Rice. Trust goes a long way. Sleepy Joe may be looking for a friendly face in DC.

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  13. Dr.Waddy from Jack: Rice, as far as I can see, projects a haughty and dismissive mien and may well be unable to endure the campaign trail. Oh yes, she'll get an almost comprehensive free pass from the bigoted MSM but one outburst could do the trick. It's possible the dims will use her as their attack dog, fearing biden's verbal clumsiness. She may not be up to it; this isn't the UN podium and being Obama's girl, she will of course be reflexively hostile to the real America notwithstanding any slick Obamaesque fronting.

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