Kamala Harris says lower-income kids should go to college for free

As reported by the Sacramento Bee:

Kamala Harris, in the final weeks of her U.S. Senate campaign against fellow Democrat Loretta Sanchez, released a higher education plan Tuesday calling for making public colleges and universities free for students whose families earn less than $140,000 a year.

She also wants to allow borrowers to discharge student loans in bankruptcy.

Harris announced the benchmarks ahead of a roundtable discussion with students at Los Angeles Trade Tech College. She joins other Democrats, including Hillary Clinton, in pledging to eliminate public university tuition. Clinton’s plan would by 2021 offer free public university tuition to families making less than $125,000 a year.

Harris’ plan, which builds on her efforts in taking on for-profit colleges, comes a week after she took criticism from Sanchez for accepting campaign contributions from Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump in 2011 and 2013, and then not bringing charges against Trump University, a for-profit program mostly shuttered in 2011. …

Click here to read the full story

What Do American Workers Have To Lose By Trying Donald Trump?

Donald TrumpIn a recent column, Joel Kotkin again makes a great case why American workers should vote against the Ruling Class and their poster child candidate, Hillary Clinton including:

“Middle-class revulsion with the political mainstream has been driven by slow economic growth, stagnant wages, a dysfunctional education system, and, for smaller businesses, a tightening regulatory regime. Homeownership is now at a nearly half-century low. New business start ups, for the first time in three decades, are not keeping up with the number of deaths. Both stats reveal a real decline in aspiration. Most Americans, in a stunning reversal of past trends, see a worse future for their offspring than themselves. Who can blame them? Middle-class breadwinners and working-class wage-earners now suffer from deteriorating health and shorter lifespans.”

However, Kotkin makes a remarkably week case why American workers should support Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump and continue America on the same track, albeit much more crooked.

Joel Kotkin does not criticize any of Donald Trump’s policies. Kotkin likes Trump’s “themes, notably economic nationalism and control of immigration.”

Kotkin’s stated reasons for American workers supporting Hillary Clinton are:

  • “A Trump administration would be unlikely to reflect blue-collar interests, but rather those of his inner circle, which includes some of the most ravenous Wall Street operators. The same is true of his general election opponent.”  [BTW, “ravenous Wall Street operators” overwhelmingly support Hillary Clinton.]
  • “His clear incompetence, narcissism and mean-spiritedness.”

One never knows whether candidates will attempt to fulfill their promises and whether they will be successful. On Wednesday, Donald Trump reaffirmed his immigration promises. Trump has been consistent in putting America and American first. Trump has not “moved to the middle” after winning the nomination like most politicians. While you can find isolated statements in Donald Trump’s many extemporaneous speeches and interviews, Trump has been remarkably consistent in his policy positions throughout the campaign.

Assuming is it uncertain whether Donald Trump will attempt to keep his promises and be successful in doing so, American workers have a choice between a known bad result in Hillary Clinton and possibly good, possibly bad result in Donald Trump, and if Trump is even partially successful in keeping his promises, he will be better than Clinton. Given that choice, wouldn’t every rational American worker choose the possible good result of Donald Trump vs. the known bad result of Hillary Clinton?

“Narcissism and mean-spiritedness” are subjective. Given the harm to American workers from Hillary Clinton continuing ruling class policies, why shouldn’t American workers support Trump whose policies will serve their economic interests? General Patton might be described as “narcissistic and mean-spirited,” but he was a great leader, who loved America, and led his men to victory.

I totally do not get “clear incompetence.” While not every business venture was successful, Donald Trump was very successful in business. He successful built many large projects in complicated, difficult political environments. He built a multibillion dollar company. Trump dispatched 16 other candidates in the primaries. Trump is gaining on Clinton despite the unified and unprecedented MSM bias and opposition and Hillary Clinton’s massive money advantage from Ruling Class donors.

Donald Trump would be hard pressed to do worse than the corrupt, incompetent, “do as we say not as we do” Ruling Class that is making America less free, less prosperous and less secure.

As Trump asks African Americans, what do American workers have to lose by trying Donald Trump?

This piece was originally published by Fox and Hounds Daily.

Pascal’s Wager – Bet On Trump

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Though born a few years after the official end of the Renaissance, Blaise Pascal was a true Renaissance man. He was a French mathematician, physicist, inventor, writer and top notch Christian philosopher. His most famous work is the book Pensees. The most famous item in that tome is a discourse on why it is logical and rational to live a Godly life even if you don’t believe in God.

This has become known as “Pascal’s Wager,” and can be summarized thusly: A rational person should live as though God exists. If God does not exist, you lose nothing except some worldly pleasures by believing in Him. But if God does exist, you gain eternal life by living a good life, but will suffer eternal damnation if you deny Him through a life of debauchery. (A giant hat tip to Father Lawrence at St. Francis High School long ago for patiently taking the many, many hours necessary to get this across to a bunch of thick-skulled seniors in “Apologetics” class.)

Pascal’s wager has become my fire-wall in arguing with the Kool-Aid drinkers of  NeverTrump. Backed into a corner on the fact that a federal judiciary appointed by a President Hillary is a clear and present existential danger to all things conservative, the last refuge of these scoundrels is that Trump can’t be believed. They say that Trump’s list of potential Supreme Court appointees – developed with the input of the impeccably upright and conservative Heritage Foundation and Federalist Society – is a scam, that he has no intention of appointing such stellar conservatives to the courts.

This is where old pal Blaise comes in. His wager applies to the Trump v. Clinton presidential choice in this way: If the NeverTrump folks are right and I am wrong – if Trump’s court appointments would be mediocre at best and as bad as Hillary’s at worst – then we are no worse off by voting for Trump. Whether he wins or loses, we still have an awful judiciary.

However, if I am correct and the NeverTrump folks are wrong, then Trump’s court appointments will be full of young Antonin Scalias and Clarence Thomases. That represents the difference between salvation for conservatives and our values from a Trump judiciary and the gang rape of the Constitution which is certain with a Hillary-appointed judiciary. This is a wager that ought to be obvious even to the most deranged NeverTrumpster. The only rational bet, the only safe bet – vote – is for Trump.

Rational thought, however, has never been a strong point of the NeverTrump cabal, and NeverTrump-land has lately become a logic-free zone. They obsess on irrelevancies, frothing about how much rent he charges his campaign office in Trump Towers, but ignore Hillary making the State Department a giant cash laundromat for her foundation. Hillary lying to the families of the four Americans murdered in Benghazi is not as important to them as how many copies of “The Art Of The Deal” the campaign has purchased.

NeverTrump-land is inhabited by large egos and small minds, happy to play into the hands of the left-wing media to elect Hillary. No minor official who served in a previous Republican administration is too obscure not to be given breathless headlines and interviews as they denounce Trump. Any former Fourth Assistant Undersecretary to the Chief Deputy Paper Shuffler in the Department of Swamps and Sewers is guaranteed 15 minutes of fame if he or she will wax hysterical about the dangers of Trump.

The moral preening of NeverTrump is as unending as it is astounding. Conservative icon Richard Viguerie aptly described the situation as a battle between “the new puritans and Trump’s revolutionary conservatives.” The conservative grassroots workers who are rallying to Trump are not rich or famous and don’t want to be. They want to be left alone to live their lives and raise their families as they see fit – through traditional conservative American values. By supporting Trump in order to do so they have become revolutionary conservatives.

On the other side of this divide is an a group of self-appointed conservative grandees – inside the D.C. beltway, insulated, isolated from the real world. Led by Billy Kristol, Bow Tie Will and National Review magazine, NeverTrump has devolved into a group of holier-than-thou pearl clutchers. They are the new puritans, horrified that this brusque, brash brute from New York dared to rouse the rabble in fly-over country, and did so without their permission.

Kristol and Will fit Vice President Spiro Agnew’s description perfectly of “nattering nabobs of negativism” and “effete, impudent snobs.” National Review was once a great magazine, founded by conservative giants Bill Buckley and Bill Rusher. As they rail against Trump, the new puritans currently running National Review have made it largely irrelevant. By embracing NeverTrump they are ignoring one of Buckley’s most famous bits of advice. He said that when faced with a choice between less-than-perfect candidates, conservatives should always choose “the most rightward candidate with the best chance of winning.”

Hmm, the most conservative candidate with a chance of winning. That’s apparently a tough one for our new puritans.

In closing, I want to once again make clear that I am well aware of Trump’s imperfections, both as a person and as a candidate. However, none of those imperfections threaten the future of the country. Hillary appointing far-left zealots to the federal judiciary and bureaucracy absolutely does. Longtime conservative warrior and comrade-in-arms Allen Brandstater  (we met in 1965 in “Youth For Reagan For Governor”) put the choice this way: “It’s between castor oil, which is unpleasant but won’t kill you and arsenic, which will.”

Bill Bennett, Secretary of Education during the Reagan years, put it a bit more elegantly: “Our country can survive the occasional infelicities and improprieties of Donald Trump. But it cannot survive losing the Supreme Court to liberals and allowing them to wreck our sacred republic. It would reshape the country for decades.”

Pascal’s wager would no doubt be on the castor oil, infelicities and all, instead of the arsenic.

Bill Saracino is a member of the Editorial Board of CA Political Review.

To Save Trump, Put Ivanka In Charge

Ivanka TrumpAfter a stunning primary upset and positive momentum from Cleveland, the Republican nominee has returned to his old bad habits: Too much time on Twitter. Too many fights with vanquished primary foes. 

Trump’s setbacks – magnified by a media intent on electing Hillary – are emboldening moderate Republicans in swing districts to abandon the nominee – a nominee that earned more votes than any other Republican in history. If the campaign doesn’t get back on message, a winnable election will be lost.

Luckily, the campaign doesn’t have to look far. Forget the white knight. Only the damsel can save The Donald in distress.  

“His best running mate, by the way, would be Ivanka,” Senator Bob Corker quipped last month.

Corker had the right assessment of Ivanka’s potential, if not the wrong position. Ivanka is deliberate, thoughtful and dignified. A focused leader, she’s proven capable of righting the ship once before. And most important of all, the candidate values her counsel.

“She’s one of the smartest people I’ve ever dealt with,” a real estate executive who has negotiated a Trump golf course deal, told Politico in its feature profile of Ivanka. “She was a thorough, diligent, excellent negotiator.”

There’s the obvious: Ivanka appeals to women and millennials – two groups that could decide the election. Conservatives should worry that she’ll move her father to the center, but more importantly, she moves her father to victory by focusing on bringing more people into a bigger tent.

“Like many of my fellow millennials, I do not consider myself categorically Republican or Democrat,” she said in her universally well-reviewed convention speech. “More than party affiliation, I vote on based on what I believe is right, for my family and for my country. Sometimes it’s a tough choice.”

“Off the charts” – that’s how pollster Lee Carter described focus-group reaction to Ivanka’s convention speech. “The bottom line is she is an amazing spokeswoman for him.” 

Ivanka’s also practical. Her convention dress cost $138 – a not-so-subtle contrast to Hillary’s $12,000 Armani jacket for a speech on income inequality.

But, it’s short-sighted, arguably sexist, to say that Ivanka’s value is strictly limited to “softening” dad’s appeal. Her greatest value might be the opposite: a hard commitment to staying on message and maintaining a disciplined operation.

Back in June, Ivanka took the Corey Lewandowski controversy into her own hands. Ivanka fired the hot-headed deputy who’d proven time and again to be a liability. Her action ended the infighting and gave Paul Manafort full reign to seal the deal on the first ballot. 

Most important of all, the candidate trusts her judgment. Last year, when a Trump presidency still seemed inconceivable, he indicated she’d take over the business operation if he proved victorious.

“One of my father’s greatest talents is the ability to see potential in people, before they see it in themselves,” the 34-year-old businesswoman said in her speech at the RNC Convention. “He taught us that potential vanishes into nothing without effort.”

Should Donald make the effort to put Ivanka in charge, his potential presidency will accelerate. 

Shawn Steel serves as California’s committeeman on the Republican National Committee. 

John Kasich and the “NeverTrump” Quislings

 

U.S. Republican presidential candidate businessman Donald Trump speaks at a veteran's rally in Des Moines, Iowa January 28, 2016. REUTERS/Rick Wilking - RTX24HM9

When Germany invaded Norway in World War II, they needed a collaborator in the Norwegian government to urge the Norwegians to reject their heritage and embrace the foreign ideology of Nazism. They found Vidkun Quisling, who was installed as Prime Minister.  He was a willing accomplice, telling his countrymen that the Germans may be bad, but were better than the alternatives.

Norwegians didn’t quite see it that way, and when the Germans were no longer present, patriotic Norwegians promptly tried Quisling for treason and executed him. Webster’s Biographical Dictionary notes, “The word Quisling has come to mean a traitor or turncoat.”

All of which brings to mind John Kasich, Mitt Romney and the other “NeverTrump” diehards.

Kasich has started running anti-Trump ads in Ohio. Mitt Romney never misses an opportunity to put a knife into his party’s presidential nominee. They are joined by a rag-tag bunch of GOP wanna-be’s, has-beens, never-beens and folks looking for quick “clicks” to their websites or blogs. The one thing they have in common is that they all sing off the “Home on the range” Clinton song book. In the midst of their anti-Trump screeds never is heard a discouraging word about the Democrat nominee.

Some of them are driven by a stiff-necked, blue-nosed, prissiness which cannot abide a GOP nominee they deem to be crude, rude and socially unacceptable. Others, specifically Billy Kirstol and the Bow Tie, are mourning their lost influence among Republican voters – those knaves who had the nerve not to vote for candidates favored by the ossified conservative establishment. Kasich is still smarting from his humiliating defeats at the hands of said GOP voters, as he managed to win exactly one state – his own. The motivation clearly missing from them and the other “useful idiots” in the NeverTrump camp is doing what is right for the country, even if it means swallowing a bit of their titanic egos.

They and their like are quintessential Quislings. They are selling the same snake oil that ol’ Vidkun tried to sell to the Norwegians – abandon your principles and your beliefs to embrace the foreign ideology of Clintonism. Sure, the Nazis may be bad in some respects, but that warmongering, alcoholic, mad-man Churchill is even worse. Substitute Clinton for Nazis and Trump for Churchill in the above sentence and you have a pure distillation of the NeverTrump outlook.

Those of us of a certain vintage have heard this all before. We heard it used against Barry Goldwater in 1964, and against Ronald Reagan when he ran for governor and president. The “NeverTrump” critique of Trump is sometimes a verbatim repetition of the pejoratives (for UCLA graduates that means really bad words) hurled at Goldwater and Reagan.

Mitt Romney is proof that the poisoned fruit doesn’t fall very far from the poisoned tree. His father George, at the time the Republican governor of Michigan, actively campaigned against Barry Goldwater and for Lyndon Johnson. George also opposed – surprise – Reagan when he ran for president. The Romneys are at least consistent in their political tone-deafness and treachery.

As I said in previous columns about the NeverTrump derangement, I know some fine folks who have qualms about Trump – as do I. However, a large majority of these conservative activists have come around, are supporting Trump and plan to vote for him, clothespin on nose or otherwise. For they realize that a) a Clinton presidency represents an existential threat to our freedoms and b) the only candidate who can prevent that is named Trump.

The conservative grassroots activists and worker-bee types get it. The folks who actually walk the precincts, make the phone calls and stuff the envelopes are the ones showing true statesmanship and leadership. It is a few insular, sclerotic, self-appointed conservative leaders, who haven’t broken a sweat in decades, who deign not to get their fingernails dirty by doing actual political work, who are having the hissy-fit.

Like ghostly apparitions of George Romney, Nelson Rockefeller and Bill Scranton they are doing everything possible to torpedo the Republican nominee, hoping to create the self-fulfilling prophecy of a Clinton victory. Of course, if that comes about these same folks will deny any responsibility for the disasters that a Clinton presidency will most surely bring.

In his absolutely must-read biography “Witness,” Whittaker Chambers describes the “useful idiots,” those Americans who were enamored of the Soviet Union and refused to see the truth. He wrote, “To me they seemed to know little about the forces that were shaping the history of our time. To me they seemed like little children, knowing and clever little children, but knowing and clever chiefly about trifling things while they were extremely resistant to finding out about the important things.”

The NeverTrump brigades are Hillary Clinton’s useful idiots. I re-emphasize to them that control of the Federal judiciary and federal bureaucracy are the important things. Everything else, including each and every one of Donald Trump’s manifest faults, are the trifling things.

When I speak of an existential threat to basic American freedoms, conservatives and our institutions I am being quite literal. A President Clinton will infest the Supreme Court and the full federal judiciary with liberal activists who will make Ruth Bader Ginsburg look like Anton Scalia. She will populate the federal bureaucracy with conservative-haters who will make Lois Lerner look like Mother Theresa.

Chambers also wrote in “Witness” about continually running up against a certain force as he was battling the Communists. He says he finally recognized that it “was the forces of that great socialist revolution, which, in the name of liberalism, spasmodically, incompletely, somewhat formlessly, but always in the same direction, has been inching its ice cap over the nation for two decades.”

That socialist ice cap has now been inching its way over America and her freedoms for about nine decades. Its work is almost complete. Give it another four years and the ice cap will envelope everything, blocking out all rays of light, hope and constitutional freedoms.

The only way to keep that from happening is to vote for our imperfect but absolutely essential candidate – Donald Trump.  If you can’t do that, pick up a Berlitz course in Norwegian. If you’re going to act like Quisling you might as well know the language.

Bill Saracino is a member of the Editorial Board of CA Political Review.

Pro-Sanders Delegates Censored at DNC, Claim California Contingent

As reported by the Daily Dot:

Bernie signsWhen Eden McFadden got to her seat at the Wells Fargo Convention Center in Philadelphia on Thursday afternoon, she discovered someone was already sitting there. Technically, a sign on the seat said it was reserved and, technically, it wasn’t actually her seat.

Instead, as a pro-Bernie Sanders member of California’s delegation to the 2016 Democratic National Convention, the blocked-off set of seats in the area where McFadden and her #NeverHillary compatriots had been sitting for the past few days represented just another incident in a series of indignities she argues is part of an intentional effort by DNC officials to prevent anything from cracking the public facade of a party unified to elect Hillary Clinton and defeat Donald Trump.

Watching the proceedings from the the outside, the first night of the DNC seemed like chaos. A searchable database of emails stolen from the DNC’s servers and posted online in a searchable database by Wikileaks late last week revealed efforts by DNC officials to bolster the Clinton campaign at the expense of Sanders—who had never, in his three decade career in office, run as a Democrat prior to last year. For Sanders supporters who had long suspected a bias toward Clinton among the party’s formal infrastructure, the emails turned a long-simmering fire into an near-apocalyptic conflagration.

From the very first moments of the convention, a constant din of piercing jeers from Sanders supporters served as a reminder of how much work the party needed to do to heal its primary-induced fracture.

Much of that visible chaos subsided over the course of the week, following the resignation of controversial DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz and Sanders’s full-throated endorsement on Monday night. In a mass text message sent out on Thursday, Sanders urged his supporters not to interrupt Clinton’s speech.

However, concerns that their voices were silenced during the primary has led to fears that party officials were doing something similar at the convention itself—especially among Sanders’s California contingent, which has been the loudest in its opposition to Clinton and many of the policies with which she has been associated, especially the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

For McFadden and other California delegates, the fight for the future of America was encapsulated by those roped-off seats. …

Click here to read the full story

NeverTrump’s Nemesis: California Delegation to Republican Convention

U.S. Republican presidential candidate businessman Donald Trump speaks at a veteran's rally in Des Moines, Iowa January 28, 2016. REUTERS/Rick Wilking - RTX24HM9

CLEVELAND, Ohio — California was the state where Ted Cruz was going to make his last, decisive stand against Donald Trump for the Republican nomination. Instead, the California delegation to the Republican National Convention is Donald Trump’s doomsday weapon.

The state’s 172 delegates were almost entirely “hand-picked by Trump,” the Sacramento Bee reports. And the sheer size of the delegation — the convention’s largest — makes it an effective tool for Trump to use to stop any “NeverTrump” insurgency at the convention.

The California contingent has been housed far away from the convention site, 60 miles west of Cleveland, in the Lake Erie town of Sandusky. The venue: the Kalahari water park and resort, where the drought-conscious Californian delegation might enjoy the sight of precious fresh water being wasted in every direction. (Some were not so impressed by the atmosphere, reminiscent of  National Lampoon’s Vacation: “It reminds me of a bad Chevy Chase movie,” one delegate told the Bee.)

Yet the delegation will be seated in the front rows for the duration of the convention, because it will present the most visible and enthusiastic bloc of Trump supporters in the Quicken Loans Arena.

The San Francisco Chronicle elaborates:

The 172-member California delegation, the nation’s largest, is Trump’s designated enforcer.

“We are the backstop,” California Republican Party Chairman Jim Brulte — in Hawaiian shirt — told me near the Zanzibar.

“If you want to mess, bring it on,” Trump’s California state director, Tim Clark — in flip-flops and shorts — explained. “This delegation was built for a fight. If the Never Trumpers want to start something, they have to go through us.”

Some members of the delegation have been on the Trump train forever; some, like Republican National Committeeman Shaun Steel, once called Trump a “clown” but now feel he is the best, and the only, alternative to Hillary Clinton. And one delegate, billionaire Peter Thiel — who is not staying in Sandusky — has a prime time speaking slot on the last night of the convention, when Trump accepts the GOP nomination.

The delegation has come a long way from early April, when the Cruz campaign mockedTrump’s California operation, predicting that Trump would fail to find enough delegates in each of the state’s 53 congressional districts.

Today, the delegation is strong, loyal, and — as even the East Bay Times observed — diverse, with youth, women, and minorities all represented amply.

Even the Chronicle acknowledged that the delegation’s vibe has changed. No longer is it made up of the “white-haired state senators” and “the political fanboys,” but grassroots activists like Rachel Casey, the woman who was infamously assaulted by anti-Trump demonstrators in full view of the media last month.

California was once among the states most skeptical of Trump. Today, in Cleveland, it is Trump’s most loyal.

Republicans hope that the rest of the party catches the same spirit.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. His new book, See No Evil: 19 Hard Truths the Left Can’t Handle, will be published by Regnery on July 25 and is available for pre-order through Amazon. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

This piece was originally published by Breitbart.com

Black Lives Matter — 3 Things We’ve Learned; and 1 Thing We Still Don’t Know

0811-riotThe Black Lives Matter movement has raged for nearly two years. In its better moments, it has provoked soul-searching by sincere Americans who want to understand each other, and who want the law to be enforced fairly as well as effectively.

In its worst moments — such as the one we are enduring now — Black Lives Matter has inspired violence, terrorized police, driven up crime and divided Americans.

Overall, the experience has produced three basic lessons — and raised one lingering question.

1. Lesson 1: Race does not actually matter in police shootings. A black Harvard economics professor has published a new study that reveals that there is no evidence of racial bias when police use deadly force. “On the most extreme use of force – officer-involved shootings — we find no racial differences in either the raw data or when contextual factors are taken into account,” the study concludes.

The study also reports that blacks and Hispanics are 50% more likely to experience somekind of force in their interactions with police (see below). But the claim that the police are killing black people has no basis in fact.

There is anecdotal evidence to support the Harvard study’s hard numbers. Fresno police recently shot and killed an unarmed white teenager, Dylan Noble. The police “body cam” videos of the shooting are painful to watch. It is not clear that they had to use deadly force against him. But it is also likely that they had some reason to, after he appeared to be holding a long object in one of his hands; seemed to reach behind his back, or to his waist; and walked towards officers who already had their guns drawn.

The common denominator in most of these sad events is not race, but often the unpredictable behavior of the victims.

2. Lesson 2: Racism is still a part of black Americans’ everyday experience. Though there is no racial bias in shootings, minorities do experience different treatment by police.

On Wednesday, Sen. Tim Scott (R-NC), a Tea Party conservative and the first black Senator from the South since Reconstruction, gave eloquent voice to that sentiment, describing how he had once been stopped by Capitol police. They did not believe the black man standing at the entrance to the building was a U.S. Senator.

“[T]he officer looked at me, a little attitude and said, ‘The pin, I know. You, I don’t. Show me your ID’,” he recalled.

That is not to say that black people are the only people who experience racism. Nor does it mean that America’s institutions are fundamentally corrupt. The idea of “systemic racism,” which has become a Hillary Clinton talking point, is an absurd contrivance that presumes all white people to be guilty, and is used to bully people — including liberals — into conformity with the radical left.

But as even former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani noted, as he called Black Lives Matter “inherently racist,” the perception of racism creates its own reality. And there is a basis for that perception, as the Harvard study notes.

3. Lesson 3: Police, like most people, want to do the right thing. One of the striking, but overlooked, common features of the Alton Sterling shooting in Baton Rouge, the Philando Castile shooting in Minnesota, and the Dylan Noble shooting in Fresno is that the police showed a genuine concern for the people they had shot, once the confrontations were over.

Police called paramedics right away, for example, after Sterling had been shot. And in the body cam video of the Noble shooting, one officer is heard literally pleading with the young man to raise his hands so he would not have to shoot again.

There are rare exceptions, of course. In the Tamir Rice shooting in 2014, where a police officer shot and killed a boy in a park armed with a toy gun, officers struggled to provide first aid.

There are some bad cops, and terrible mistakes by good cops. But police want to solve the problem — without placing public safety at risk.

The point is there is room for debate about how to improve police tactics, and rebuild trust. Airbnb founder Joe Gebbia recently noted that strangers who normally might not trust each other change their minds with just a little more information. As Giuliani sad, we “have to try to understand each other.”

Question: Do black people realize that white people have the same problems? It can be humiliating to be “profiled,” but police make snap judgments about people all the time. In some situations, they have to do so. And sometimes, the decisions are unjust and unfair.

But it is not a uniquely black experience. Breitbart News’ Lee Stranahan was arrested last weekend while covering Black Lives Matter protests, and wrote: “I did nothing to break the law. I was not obstructing traffic … the police came directly at me. I do not know why I was targeted.” Once arrested, he made an effort to be cooperative, and observed that despite being one of the only white detainees, he was treated equally, “no better or worse than any other polite prisoner.”

There has been so much rhetoric lately about “systemic racism,” after years of Occupy-inspired agitprop about inequality, that black people could be forgiven for ascribing the ordinary mishaps and challenges of life, wrongly, to racism.

Do enough black people know that most white people — even among the “wealthy” — struggle to pay the bills, wrestle with addiction, and have run-ins with the cops?

We have let our leaders politicize the everyday. We should try talking to each other, without them.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. His new book, See No Evil: 19 Hard Truths the Left Can’t Handle, will be published by Regnery on July 25 and is available for pre-order through Amazon. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

This piece was originally published by Breitbart California

Populist Unity Can Overcome the Establishment’s Supermajority

Back in 2012, the California Policy Center published an article entitled “The Forgotten 33%,” which included a graphic entitled “American Voter Breakdown 2012.” It depicted the U.S. electorate as comprised of 46% who pay zero net taxes, 20% who work for the government and are net tax consumers, the 1% “super rich,” and the “forgotten 33%,” who work in the private sector and earn enough to be positive net taxpayers.

The point of the article, then and now, was that people with an intrinsic preference for big government comprise a super-majority of voters in America. But something has changed since 2012…

AMERICAN VOTER BREAKDOWN 2016

Tax paying chart

The emergence of Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders as serious contenders to become president of the U.S. reflects a growing awareness among voters in all of the above categories that things can and should be better. The 33% who constitute America’s beleaguered taxpayers were angry four years ago, and this time around they’re furious. Their ire is the most easily explained: Now more than ever, they work long hours for less wages or lower profits, all while being told by the establishment press, by mainstream academia, and by left-wing politicians that they’re “privileged,” and still aren’t paying their “fair share.” If they’re white, they’re told their success is the undeserved result of their color, when in fact they’ve been the recipients of institutionalized reverse discrimination for nearly two generations. And no matter what their ethnicity, they confront soaring prices for housing, health care, and college tuition for their children.

The 33% who work and make enough to pay taxes are angry. And they should be. But what about the 46% who pay no net taxes?

The anger of the 46% takes various forms, nearly all of it justified. Many of them work, but qualify for the earned income tax credit and subsidized health care, which makes them net tax consumers. Many of them would like to work harder, but the only jobs available are part-time with unpredictable schedules which makes it impossible for them to work two jobs. Many of them would like to get a better education, but they are the products of failing schools where teacher tenure is more important than student achievement. And if they’re people of color and haven’t yet been successful, they’re perpetually told by the establishment press, by mainstream academia, and by left-wing politicians that they are victims of discrimination and their failures are not their responsibility – fueling additional anger.

And what of the 20% who work for the government? They are, for the most part, ensured decent health care and a secure retirement. But they are the targets of relentless propaganda from their unions, who have waged a multi-decade campaign to convince them they are underpaid, underappreciated and overworked. Many of them succumb to this nonsense. Others, and more than a few, are disgruntled for the opposite reason – they resent working for a unionized government where merit means less than seniority, and innovation is a threat.

But why are taxes consuming the 33%? Why are opportunities for good jobs and education being denied the 46%? And why does government get bigger every year but deliver less?

There’s a simple answer. Government unions. Especially at the state and local level, government unions have destroyed our public schools and driven our public institutions to the brink of bankruptcy. These government unions perpetually lobby for higher taxes, bigger government – more employees with more pay and benefits, more job killing regulations, and more programs ostensibly intended to help the less fortunate – regardless of their cost or actual effectiveness. The government union agenda is to increase their power and influence – a goal that has no connection with the public interest.

Government unions control state and local politicians, who in turn control every scrap of legislation sought after by big business. They encourage and enable cronyism. Their union controlled pension funds and their union backed government bond underwriting make them the biggest players on Wall Street. They ARE the “establishment” that has gotten everyone so agitated this time around.

Donald Trump, for all his hapless gaffes and hideous vitriol, is far too intelligent to identify government unions as the root cause of most of the problems in America. Unions make or break Trump’s development projects. And even if Trump did attack the government unions, he’d risk confusing voters, who by and large still don’t make a distinction between public and private sector unions.

Bernie Sanders, despite his belated attempts to pander to the African American left by challenging police organizations, is unwilling or unable to make the distinction between police personnel, whom we are lucky to have among us, and police unions that protect bad cops and intimidate politicians. And even if Sanders did take on the police unions, he would never take on the teachers unions – despite the fact they’ve practically destroyed public education in America.

Populist anger in America today is justified, and there is a unifying target for the anger – the “establishment” as represented by government unions and their clients; monopolistic corporations, America’s overbuilt financial sector, and the extreme environmentalist lobby that provides a phony moral cover for their iniquitous schemes. If public sector unions were illegal, this entire corrupt establishment would be threatened as never before. As it is, this awakening national dissent has seismic power, diffused in all directions, turning only on itself.

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Ed Ring is the president of the California Policy Center.

Never Trump Does The Hindenburg

Donald TrumpThat crashing sound and acrid burning smell you’ve noticed of late is the “NeverTrump” (NT) movement meeting political reality in the same manner the dirigible Hindenburg met the ground in Lakehurst, New Jersey.

To review the bidding, the NT cabal is led by a small coterie of Republican elitists and disgruntled king-makers. They think that the 13 million or so GOP voters who chose Donald Trump in the primaries (a record, by the way, and some two and a half million more votes than Mittens Romney received in 2012) should be given the middle finger, told to go pound sand, and then be expected to embrace whichever pliable stooge the establishment puts forward after they steal the nomination from Trump.

They are unlikely to succeed in overturning at the convention the clear popular choice of rank and file Republicans across the country, but that hasn’t stopped them from trying. Like the Hindenburg, NT is kept afloat by a combination of hot air and noxious gas. The most gaseous in the effort is William Kristol, he of the perpetual smirk. He has been holding his breath and stamping his feet since midway through the primary process. He’s throwing a gargantuan tantrum because the “little people” who make up the GOP base didn’t listen to them.

Billy Kristol’s main claim to fame is that he was Chief of Staff for Vice President Dan Quayle. Billy used to like to boast that he was the smartest person on Quayle’s staff.  As Charles Krauthammer observed, this “is akin to being the tallest building in Topeka Kansas.”

As if to prove Krauthammer correct, Billy’s first self-described “bombshell” for NT was to announce that David French would run as a third party alternative to Trump. If you are asking “David who?” you’re in good company. French is a writer nobody has ever heard of who writes for a once fine magazine, National Review, that nobody reads anymore. Eventually, even the anonymous Mr. French could see the Hindenburg-like trajectory of NT and withdrew from consideration. What followed was a series of trial balloons that made the Hindenburg look like the Starship Enterprise.

So the NT brain trust switched from recruiting a third party candidate to oppose Trump to stealing the nomination at the convention next week. I use the verb “steal” advisedly but correctly. The NT strategy is to change the rules (the rules every delegate to the convention ran under and was elected under) so that delegates legally bound to vote for Trump won’t have to do so. For instance, Republicans in my Congressional District cast 69.58 percent of their ballots for Trump, thereby earning him all three delegates from this district. The NT folks think that these delegates ought to ignore the votes of the 70 percent of local Republicans who sent them to the convention and vote for somebody else, anybody else, even if that person wasn’t on the ballot and received zero votes.

The tallest building in Topeka Kansas and his Quisling Caucus apparently think this would be a positive development for the GOP. After all, few things reinforce faith in democracy like ignoring the actual votes of the people. Billy World’s Trump Derangement Syndrome is so advanced that they believe changing the rules, not in the middle of the game but 95 percent through the game, and thereby stealing the nomination from the clear choice of the Republican primary electorate is justified by their prissy, starched collar, blue nosed disdain for this ruffian outsider named Trump.

Success for their larceny would rupture the party, perhaps irreversibly, but they don’t care. The great unwashed among the Republican voters – those barbarians in “fly over” country who ignored the advice of their betters inside the D.C. beltway – need to be taught a lesson. The Republican Party will be a shambles if their gambit succeeds, but at least they might have a chance to rule over the ashes. They need to destroy the party in order to save it.

As I said in my previous column, I know many fine folks who are skeptical of Trump. These are “worker bee” types by and large who, like me, had other favorites earlier in the primaries. The first part of conversations with them usually consists of my saying “yes, I know,” “I agree,” “you’re right about that,” etc. Lately to save time I open the conversation with, “I will stipulate to every negative thing you are going to say about Trump, now let’s talk about the 3 to 4 Supreme Court appointments and several hundred Federal court appointments the next president will have.”

For it is in the courts that the existential threat to our liberties lie. If there were 5 or 6 young, healthy Anton Scalias and Clarence Thomas’s currently on the Supreme Court I likely wouldn’t really care who won this November. But there are not. Donald Trump has published a list of stellar conservative jurists as candidates for court appointments. Hillary Clinton’s court appointments will be far left, quasi-Stalinist activists. She will fill the federal bureaucracy with conservative-haters who will make Lois Lerner look like Mother Theresa. The full force of the federal government will be embarked on a search and destroy mission against conservatives, our values and our freedoms.

Think I’m exaggerating? The Christian bakers in Oregon who demurred on participating in the gay wedding were not only fined $150,000 but also ordered to attend mandatory – mandatory – “sensitivity and diversity” classes. A couple of months ago Loretta Lynch promised to “vigorously prosecute” anyone who spread “inflammatory rhetoric” about Islam. The Obama-appointed U.S. attorney in Idaho has warned that it is “very likely against the law” to publicly comment in a “negative, provocative” manner on the case of three immigrant minors who molested a 5-year-old. The attorneys general of 11 Marxist U.S. states want to make felons of corporate CEOs who publicly challenge “climate change.” Add that to the violent onslaught on campus against conservative speakers. At a Trump rally in San Jose a month ago the police stood idly by while ordinary citizens were brutally assaulted (7 were hospitalized and cars vandalized while attempting to attend the public event). The day after, the mayor of San Jose blamed Trump and his “extremist” supporters for the disturbance. The local newspaper heartily agreed with him, stating that “extremist views like Trump’s have no place in civilized discourse and as such are certainly not protected by the first amendment.” Emphasis added. Those are chilling words, but just a sample of what would be allowed, nay encouraged, by a Clinton-appointed judiciary and executive branch.

Like it or not, there is only one candidate who can stop this from happening. His name is Donald Trump. Winston Churchill said of Democracy that “it is the worst form of government, except for all the others.” So it is with Trump the candidate. Imperfect, flawed and a thesaurus full of other pejoratives, but if you do not vote for him you are enabling the dark night of socialist repression that will most assuredly flow out of a Clinton regime. The shredding of the constitution will be on your head.

The last retort of the NT Clinton enablers is often “sometimes party loyalty demands too much.” Indeed it does. My first two votes for president were cast in 1972 and 1976. In neither year did I vote for the Republican nominee. I’m not supporting Donald Trump out of loyalty to my party. I’m doing it out of loyalty to my country.

Bill Saracino is a member of the Editorial Board of CA Political Review.