John Peeler: In stable democracies, the major political parties keep authoritarians out of power through “gatekeeping” actions, such as isolating and defeating extremists, rather than allying with them, and by rooting out extremists in their own ranks.
John Peeler: Imagine what would happen if the Pentagon budget were slashed. How many millions of workers, from uniformed service members to civilian employees, to contractor employees, would lose their jobs?
John Peeler: Pretty much everyone who has tried to say no to him, or to deflect him from some of his more outlandish, less-thought-out ideas, pretty much all of them are gone.
John Peeler: Democrats need to let it be known that they will do all in their power to shut down Congress. If the Congress refuses to be a check on the President, at least it should be stopped from being an accessory.
Lamb’s performance shows us that blue collar, less-educated populations are still open to appeals by the right kind of Democrat: relatively conservative on issues like guns or abortion, pro-union, pro-safety net programs like Medicare and even Obamacare.
John Peeler: Trump will let it be known when he opposes something, but won’t propose something and stand behind it. That’s how he scuttled the deal on immigration, and how he snatched defeat from the jaws of victory in the failed attempt to repeal Obamacare.
John Peeler: Clinton was a petty and foolish philanderer. Trump is a menace to the Constitution. But Trump’s supporters will defend him because they hope he will have the power to accomplish what they want done. Even at the expense of the Constitution itself.
John Peeler: With the new tax law, Americans will be specifically discouraged from donating to charity because they’ll get the same standard deduction whether they donate or not.
John Peeler: Suppose that every woman, child, and man whose income fell below the poverty threshold received a monthly income that would suffice to keep them out of poverty.
John Peeler: It’s conceivable the Democrats could give Trump a symbolic victory by supporting immigration enforcement and authorizing a wall, but then slow-walk the appropriations process. In return, they save the Dreamers.
John Peeler: Rents in poor areas are, paradoxically, high, because the poor population are largely captives: they are prevented by means legal and illegal from moving out.
John Peeler: The first comprehensive immigration law set quotas by national origin, intended to return the ethnic mix of the country to something like what it had been about the time of the Civil War.
John Peeler: The thing is, his base is holding. About 40 percent of the public still approve of his performance.