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Assume the worst about both candidates:

Hillary Clinton is a pathological liar, a threat to our National Security, a pay-to-play politician willing to sell access to anyone in government for the right price, is willing to destroy any woman who threatens her husband or her political future, etc., etc., etc.

Donald Trump is unqualified to be President, is crude and dismissive of women, has fondled half the women he has met, has been bankrupt himself and will do the same to our country, etc., etc., etc.

This presidential campaign has become the biggest schoolyard shouting match in history, and, like kids yelling insults, much of what is said is false and/or misleading.  So what can you believe and who should you choose?

Most people are holding their nose and making a choice.

Here is what I believe to be true and how I plan to vote:

  1.  Hillary is an egoist.  She will do whatever she believes serves her self interest.  Any failure will be hidden from public view or rationalized as having been caused by others or by conspiracies against her.  The egoist puts herself and her desires above all else. She believes she can get away with any action legal or illegal.  She believes she is above the law and above those she would rule.  She is more likely to destroy others than to build herself.
  2. Trump is an egotist.  He will do whatever he believes will enhance a positive view of him.  Any failure will drive him to do something to make him look so good that people forget the failure and see only his success.  The egotist puts his image above other concerns.  He is more likely to pose with a beauty queen than to destroy one to prove his power.
  3. Egoist vs. Egotist.  It is an important distinction.
  4. Donald Trump got the nomination of the Republican Party because he is not part of the political establishment.  Period.  For the most part, those who backed hims did not care if Trump was a brilliant businessman or not, whether he had a concrete plan to improve fix any of the ills of our federal government or not, whether he employed more female executives than anyone in his industry or not, whether he saw women as objects to be manipulated or not.  All that mattered to a large numbers of citizens was that for the past 40 years (covers the political lifetime of most voters) an elite cabal of political functionaries has taken effective control over the lives of most Americans.  A large and growing number of people are sick and tired of being used by their political “betters” and want to see change.  At this point, the desire for change is great enough that many feel that any change away from the self-serving, ego-driven, aloof politicians, regardless of party affiliation, will be for the better.  Trump may be ego-driven.  He may feel he is better than the rest of us (just like most politicians do, especially the Clintons).  He is not, however, seen to be part of the current “ruling elite”, not part of the establishment.
  5. There are a lot of people who resent Hillary Clinton for getting away with crimes that would put the rest of us in jail.  They don’t like being told what to do by people who have never really “done” anything except tell others what to do.
  6. Like a majority of those who voted for Brexit, I think the American public is getting fed up with being governed by condescending, self-interested politicians.  As a result, they could well vote for any “non-establishment” option.
  7.  The national media are part of the establishment.  They are working hard to preserve the status quo.  They live in a world that is oblivious to the feelings and concerns of “average Americans.”  As a result, like in the U.K. during the run-up to the Brexit Vote, their sheltered viewpoint blinds the media to the real feelings of the majority of Americans.  They are out of touch.  People don’t know who to believe, but they are certain that national media have an agenda and are not to be believed.

It has been said often that doing the same thing and expecting a different result is insanity.  I think many are willing to risk most anything to see if we can’t break the cycle.  People want less government control and they want more efficiency out of their government.  They don’t want to be led by people who break the law.  They will vote against the “Establishment”.  They will vote against “more of the same.”  I will.


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Brexit – Why did the Brits Vote to Leave?

The answer to that question is not a simple one and must take into account a myriad of different things.  However, we can get a good insight by looking at one simple item of news today.

The European Commission has decided that Apple owes almost $15 Billion in back taxes to Ireland.  You would think that Ireland would love that.  But it’s not the case.  Here’s why:

Corporate taxes in Ireland are about 12.5% vs. the 35% average in the USA.  That, and an educated and less expensive workforce, has led to Apple (and Microsoft and Facebook and Google and about a dozen huge US companies) to establish facilities in Ireland.  These companies employ about 140,000 people in Ireland.

It was the Irish who improved their education system to prepare its people to become a highly valued workforce.  It was the Irish who decided to establish a tax system that would be attractive to foreign investment.  The EU did neither of these things.

Now, the EU thinks it is unfair for Ireland to make itself more attractive to investment than the rest of Europe so they want to punish the Irish while pretending to work for them by winning for Ireland a big tax windfall.

This is all about the EU flexing its muscle and keeping a ‘curve breaker’ in line.  The Irish are too smart to fall for it.  They are fighting the EU ruling.  In short, the Irish are doing a better job than the EU and they want the folks from the EU to butt out – almost in the same way that the Brits wanted the EU out so they could once again determine their own fate.

Of course, Apple is also fighting this and it will be interesting if the Largest US company or the European Union will prevail.  The backlash against central planning and globalism seems to grow daily.

Hillary Clinton currently leads Donald Trump by anywhere from 5 to 15% depending upon which polls you read. The press is falling all over itself demanding that everyone agree with them that Donald Trump will be defeated in an historic Clinton Landslide.

It is interesting to note that in 1988, George H. W. Bush trailed Michael Dukakis by 17% in July and still by 7 to 10% in late August.  Dukakis ended up winning a total of one state – his home state of Massachusetts.

Similarly, in 2000, Al Gore led George Bush by up to 10 points in mid-September.  In September, John McCain led Barack Obama by as much as 5 points.  As late as October, Jimmy Carter led Ronald Reagan by 4-6%.

Obviously, my point is: “Most successful pundits are selected for being opinionated, because it’s interesting, and the penalties for incorrect predictions are negligible. You can make predictions, and a year later people won’t remember them.”   -Daniel Kahneman (emphasis is mine)

Romney landslideBrexit Prediction

The much anticipated Brexit Vote in favor of Leaving the EU surprised a lot of people.  Especially the detached, urban-centered, media.   They did not see it coming because they had not taken an hour’s drive out of the city to learn what the “common man” thought about living under EU Rule. The political elites managed no better than the media.  479 Members of Parliament came out in favor of “Remain.”  Only 158 came out in favor of “Leave.”


What have we learned?

First, the vote was clear.  Those who took the trouble to vote, by a margin of 52% to 48% wanted out of the EU.  72.2% of those qualified to vote turned up and did their civic duty.  That is a greater turnout than any national poll/election in the past 20+ years.  This was not something to be “corrected” by a recount.

Baby Boomers voted largely to “Leave.”  Was this just looking back at better times, hoping to return to a more orderly, more British society?  Were youth who voted overwhelmingly to “Remain” led to believe (brainwashed, the Boomers might say) in the sanctity of multiculturalism and globalism?

If one thing has been shown in the few days since the people of the U.K. voted to exit the E.U., it is that the elitists, liberals, and the governing class are poor losers.  Everything I have read suggests that the losers are doing all they can to overturn the will of the people.  So convinced were the political class of victory for the “Remain” vote, they are now convinced that the “Leave” campaign must be guilty of the type of misdeeds to which they are often a party.  They are planning everything from a second referendum (re-vote) to bureaucratic maneuvers to delay the actual separation indefinitely.

The losers are resorting to name-calling and personal attacks.  They suggest that only very small minds could be convinced to leave the EU.  Who could believe leaving the EU would be better than staying, being multiculturalists, globalists, etc.?  Many are making it known that they will “punish” the Brits for this action.  Having read many of the scare tactics used in the campaign, I don’t doubt that there will be threats and skulduggery.

The most poignant article I have read to date ties the exit vote to fear of rape and increased crime.   Most people don’t understand international trade.  Probably fewer understand why it is their duty to house and feed able bodied young Muslim men.  But, they fully understand when women they know (including wives and daughters) are being assaulted at rates far greater than ever seen in the U.K. before.  With the majority of this increase in crime and offenses against women coming from immigrants of the Muslim faith, it is easy to see how many blame the EU for this problem.

Time will tell if this turns out to be good for the United Kingdom.  In my view the Brexit victory is a long-term positive for the U.K., the U.S. and, yes, for Europe.  Here’s why:

  1. Central Planning/Collective Action doesn’t work.  Short term, it can show some impressive efficiencies.  Long term it kills initiative and the work ethic and is unsustainable;
  2. Central Planning is dangerous.  It creates, among other things, agricultural monocultures that are susceptible to massive kill-offs from a single vector.  Isn’t it strange that multiculturalism is the holy grail of the Globalists in the EU but they don’t see the downside to agricultural monocultures which they legislate into effect;
  3. The political class was shown, once again, to be totally oblivious of the interests and the will of the people whom they rule.;
  4. Independent thought and action, self sufficiency, and individuality create a stronger culture and one that is resilient and sustainable, if enough people are willing the work for it;

In the meantime, this battle between the Elites and the Populists will get its second hearing in the U.S. Presidential Election in November.  Some say this bodes ill for Hillary, who much like the “Remain” campaign has the support of the majority of youth and the media.  Both groups showed themselves to be out of touch with the majority in the Brexit Vote.  Donald Trump’s presence in Scotland to dedicate a new golf course just as the Brexit votes were counted may show that he is more in tune with the people than either the media or the political class.

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