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On August 14, 2019, pollster YouGov published a study about the overlap in the British public’s political views.

Their ‘Left-wing vs right-wing: it’s complicated’ is a must-read for everyone.

Before Brexit — and Trump — shut down what used to be stimulating political discussions with friends, I, too, found this disparity. I’m glad a polling organisation has discovered this and made it public.

YouGov’s article accompanying its survey results show that the left-right divide is indeed murky (emphasis in the original, purple one mine):

YouGov shows that the left-wing to right-wing political spectrum is actually much more complex than previously thought when it comes to public opinion

A new angle of attack from Jeremy Corbyn seems to be that Boris Johnson is presiding over the most right-wing government in living memory.

That might be a helpful move if politicians had an accurate assessment of where the public stands on the left-right spectrum. But if the reaction in Westminster to YouGov survey data from earlier this week showing that 75% of Brits (including 61% of Labour voters) support the PM’s proposed expansion of stop and search powers is anything to go by, they may well not.

Framing politics in terms of left-wing and right-wing might be simple for politicians, and comforting to activists, but it seems that these terms just aren’t that useful for talking about – or indeed to – the general public.

A new YouGov study reveals that the political wing spectrum is poorly understood and also that huge numbers of people don’t hold consistent left- and right-wing outlooks.

YouGov asked participants to rank socio-political views as left-wing and right-wing. YouGov has not assigned any label to these. They have taken these perspectives from the British public:

However, when the researchers probed further, they found that the public actually hold a mix of socio-political views:

I know I certainly hold differing views, and people have asked why. I say that I am a centrist and hold conservative views on some things and more left-wing views on others. Of course, they generally accuse me, at best, of being ‘inconsistent’ and, at worst, a ‘traitor to the cause’, but I am far from alone.

Look at the crossover YouGov found:

Those charts show all manner of socio-political contradictions. Spend some time studying them. Wow!

YouGov says the public do not understand political classifications:

For those who spend their days immersed in Westminster goings on, awareness of how the left-to-right spectrum works is taken for granted. But our results show that the wider public is in fact largely unfamiliar with the categorisation.

I think that YouGov’s statements there are incorrect. I do not think Parliamentarians, whether MPs or the Lords, understand the overlap in the charts above, either. I think they would be surprised. Here is one example (emphases mine):

However, these views do not appear to be distinct to one end of the spectrum over the other: 78% of right-wingers also think that green and renewable energy should be prioritised, while 78% of left-wingers also think that global population growth is a problem.

And what about these?

a majority of left-wing Britons (59%) believe that school discipline should be stricter, making it the most commonly-held right-wing view among the left. Likewise, 55% of left-wingers believe criminal justice in Britain to be too soft, a plurality of 47% want to see tighter restrictions on immigration, and sizeable minorities of 39% support capital punishment and 36% support Britain having a nuclear arsenal.

And this one?

among Britons who support a greater redistribution of wealth, 59% support capital punishment, 72% think the criminal justice system is too soft and 68% want tighter restrictions on immigration.

On the supposed opposite end of the spectrum:

among Britons who want less redistribution of wealth, 47% the government to take a dominant/significant role in managing the economy, 42% think the minimum wage is too low, and 35% think the UK has a responsibility to aid poorer nations.

I would like to see a similar survey conducted in the United States and France. I reckon the findings would be similar.

In closing, although our political betters think we, the ‘great unwashed’, are ‘stupid’ or ‘sheep’, we, in fact, have a nuanced understanding of politics — and life.

YouGov concludes:

There is space in the current political landscape for some very radical appeals to be made that would prove very popular. This applies to all parties, not just Boris Johnson. Any politician willing to do so could find themselves with the keys to victory.

Politicians should catch up to our way of thinking. The sooner the better.

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It was on Wednesday, July 24, 2019, that Theresa May made her final appearance at the Despatch Box in the House of Commons at PMQs (Prime Minister’s Questions). Boris Johnson succeeded her as Prime Minister later that day.

Here’s a great video compilation of Boris in action. He was declared the next Conservative Party leader on July 23:

Today’s PMQs session was bittersweet. I remembered liking Mrs May wholeheartedly until March of this year.

Outside of Brexit, she was a very good PM, as MPs from both sides of the aisle made clear during today’s 65-minute PMQs.

The link in the next tweet shows a list of MPs who asked today’s questions. Mrs May did not wear this suit, by the way:

Instead, she wore the royal blue one that matched Angela Merkel’s in colour. As it looks like wool, that must have been over the top when we are not only in July but also in the middle of a heatwave:

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn paid her a brief compliment on her ‘sense of public duty’:

Political pundit Guido Fawkes noted with irony (colour and italics in the original):

Remarkably he will now be onto his third Tory Prime Minister, not that he’s had much to do with that himself…

May asked Corbyn with good humour if he would follow her example:

She said:

Perhaps I could just finish my exchange with him by saying this – as a party leader who has accepted when her time is up, perhaps the time is now for him to do the same.

She also reminded the House of his many political flip-flops:

An Independent MP later agreed with her:

May has taken 4,540 questions during her PMQs sessions since she became PM in 2016. She has spent hundreds of hours answering them.

Both Conservative and Opposition benches gave her credit for:

– lowering public borrowing (the lowest rate in 17 years);

– a stronger economy, despite Remainers’ anti-Brexit Project Fear;

– reducing unemployment;

– actively supporting legislation, currently in place, to combat slavery;

– actively supporting legislation, also in place, to prosecute perpetrators of domestic violence;

– supporting law enforcement, although, as always, more work needs to be done;

– promoting a more equal society, as she promised in July 2016;

– being a solid role model for women, including those in politics;

– showing dignified, respectful leadership.

Indeed, Brexit was her only black mark.

After she listened to a warm tribute from Jo Swinson, the new female leader of the Liberal Democrats, May rightly pointed out that only the Conservatives have had two female prime ministers! She added that most of Britain’s political parties have or have had women leaders. She concluded by saying that there is only one party that has not had a woman leader: the Labour Party! (We cannot count the Brexit Party, because they have no MPs yet.)

Philip May was in the spectator’s gallery to watch his wife give her final appearance in Parliament as PM. A Conservative MP mentioned it. You can see that she really loves her husband, because she blushed and smiled broadly at his mention.

When she left the dispatch box, she received one minute of applause and a standing ovation from Conservative MPs.

Theresa May will now sit on the backbenches as a Conservative MP.

Outside of Brexit, she did a great job as PM.

Thank you, Mrs May.

Guido Fawkes has a rundown of what happened next. I’ve inserted tweets from the BBC:

13:00 TM returns to Downing Street to say goodbye to staff.

14:00 TM leaves Downing Street for the last time as Prime Minister, making a short speech outside.

14:15 TM goes to Buckingham Palace to tender her resignation to the Queen.

15:00 Boris goes to Buckingham Palace to be formally appointed as Prime Minister.

16:00 Boris makes his first speech as Prime Minister from the steps of Downing Street.

17:00 Boris heads to his Commons office to begin his Cabinet reshuffle.

Expect the top jobs to be announced by 10pm…

I wish Boris Johnson well as Prime Minister.

Early last week, James O’Keefe and his Project Veritas team were victims of censorship with their exposés of Instagram and Google algorithms designed to throttle pro-Trump media:

Around the same time, Reddit’s popular The_Donald was ‘quarantined’, just as the 2020 presidential campaign got underway with the Democrat debates:

Speaking of the Democrat debate, watch the blackout during the broadcast:

President Trump tweeted:

But I digress.

Back now to the main story.

The_Donald has been under attack by the Left since 2016. The subreddit (forum) has been enormously popular in red pilling — providing political wake up calls to — wavering Democrats, especially Bernie Sanders supporters.

Naturally, the Left wants to stop The_Donald.

On June 24, Media Matters got involved, claiming posts advocating violence against police on one of The_Donald’s threads.

Oddly, The_Donald’s true posters — and moderators — are very pro-law enforcement. Could there have been an infiltrator?

In any event, Reddit is loaded with questionable ‘subs’ (subreddits) that actually do advocate violence and, in other areas, aberrancy (to be polite):

Hmm. From the same Twitter account holder only a few weeks ago:

Anyway, the end result was a quarantine for The_Donald:

Among other outlets, Gateway Pundit covered the story in brief.

Not surprisingly, The_Donald’s quarantine has attracted more readers as well as active pushback against Reddit (emphasis in the original):

Hi r/the_donald. Since reddit has banned this subreddit, I have gotten 38 people to create accounts just to subscribe.

I just wanted to say that I don’t agree with what’s happening. No matter your belief, you should have a platform without being silenced. Keep fighting.

Someone replied (emphasis mine):

We’ve added 6500 new subs since this morning by the looks of it. 754k to 760.5k

Splendid!

Some will ask why The_Donald doesn’t go elsewhere. They did set up a site with the same name on Voat, but the Left infiltrated it. Blueshare is affiliated with the aforementioned Media Matters:

We need another platform but thedonald sub at voat never took off and was taken over by antisemitic shills from blueshare.

Another issue is that newer platforms lack the capacity to handle large volumes of traffic. Public awareness of alternative platforms is also not very good. People visit platforms with which they are familiar.

One of Reddit’s moderators contacted The_Donald saying that Reddit wants the forum gone, therefore, readers should not give in or go elsewhere. Click on the image to enlarge:

The key points of the moderator’s message are as follows, taken verbatim:

Here is the thing you need to understand, it’s not enough for them to have a community like this put on the backburner. They want it to not exist. To exist means your ideas permeate, which is too much for them to bear. They don’t want alternatives, even if those alternatives are minority viewpoints. They want only one viewpoint to permeate. Their own.

This is where the_donald comes in. Please do not have this community sperg out and go to voat or gab.ai or whatever else. That’s what the wider reddit community wants to see happen. They want you deplatformed and irrelevant. You need to cherish what you have. This community is likely the largest trump community on the internet. It has to be protected, not segmented.

And for every subscriber this subreddit has, there are probably 10x lurkers that just browse without accounts. This subreddit has an important role to play in 2020. Don’t give the admins an excuse to shut you guys down. Don’t play into their hand.

You need to push back. You need to fight for your place in discourse, and you need to legitimize yourselves by existing and refusing to die. That will be your best revenge.

There are members of the reddit do-it-for-free crowd that are sympathetic to the_donald, but we always have to be quiet or we’ll be kicked off our teams. We are out there though. good luck to you.

I stopped reading The_Donald a few months ago. I’ll be reading it a bit more often now. I hope others will do likewise.

On Tuesday, May 14, 2019, Zogby Analytics published a poll showing that President Trump’s popularity continues to rise:

Even the British noticed:

Larry Elder posted the link to Zogby’s findings:

Zogby’s article says, in part (emphases mine):

A new Zogby Poll® of 852 likely voters nationwide in the U.S., conducted from 5/2/19-5/9/19, with a margin of sampling error of +/-3.4 percentage points, shows President Trump’s job approval rating at its best since we’ve been tracking the figure

President Trump’s job approval rating has seen a post Mueller report boost! We called it a few weeks ago. But that’s not the complete story as to why the president has reached a peak in his job approval rating. Trump is also riding high on positive economic news-a record high stock market, low unemployment, and solid GDP growth at home. At the moment President Trump’s approval rating is higher than Obama’s at the same point in his presidency-Zogby Analytics had President Obama at 48% approve/52% disapprove on 05/09/2011.

Also:

One of the demographics to give Trump a very good job performance rating were self-identified social networkers (59% approve/40% disapprove-people who engage with social media). Trump has a huge following on Twitter and often utilizes his Twitter account to frequently get his message across to the public. The president also made strides with college educated voters (55% approve/45% disapprove), and saw support increase slightly with non-college educated voters (47% approve/50% disapprove).

Great news for 2020!

Not knowing the circumstances surrounding the inferno at Notre-Dame in Paris is bad enough.

Now lovers of the mediaeval cathedral, the French capital’s monumental house of worship, wonder what is meant by the words ‘restoration’ and ‘rebuilding’.

Does the French government consider the two words to be the same as the average person who treasures what was lost? What about expert architects? What about building contractors?

This was what the cathedral looked like at the end of the day on Wednesday, April 24, 2019. Protective coverings were placed over the vulnerable parts of the structure:

One week later, on Tuesday, April 30, Paris police released aerial footage of the protective sheet covering the cathedral’s massive roof from a drone’s eye view:

That day, Le Huffington Post reported findings of a YouGov poll they commissioned in France which showed that 54 per cent of people want a restoration ‘identical to the original’. Only 25 per cent support President Macron and Prime Minister Philippe’s plan for an ‘architectural gesture’:

Twenty-one percent of the people surveyed were undecided.

The more conservative the participant, the greater the desire for a full, authentic restoration: from 66 per cent to 69 per cent, depending on political orientation.

A design firm from Lyon, NAB, released its plans for a greenhouse roof garden and spire containing beehives unlikely to please those who love the original structure with its dramatic vaults. Le Huffington Post published NAB’s shocking images on April 26. Have a chair nearby, because you’ll need a sit down and a cuppa after seeing them.

That same day, Le HuffPo released a short video wherein an architect, a historian, an urban design expert and a sociologist gave their opinions of the current buzz by government officials, architects and building firms about the cathedral’s reconstruction. Interviewed separately, they said the same things. The project seemed to be politically motivated, with an objective of proposed plans devised too hastily involving companies eager to make money at the expense of France’s — and the world’s — heritage. One said that the stone needs at least a year to dry out thoroughly, therefore, completing the reconstruction in five years’ time was a nonsense:

Those hoping to be part of Prime Minister Philippe’s working group on the way forward for Notre-Dame will need to take UNESCO’s perspective on board, too. Fortunately, UNESCO agrees with the French public with whom YouGov spoke:

The Art Newspaper‘s editorial begins with this (emphases mine):

The 28 April appeal by over 1000 academics, restorers and architects for an extension to President Macron’s five-year deadline for the restoration of Notre Dame can find comfort in the the cathedral’s status as a Unesco World Heritage site, because the guidelines on how to approach restoring such a great monument already exist.

They are implicit in the conditions accepted by France when Notre-Dame was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1991 as part of a grouping that includes the great buildings along the Seine from the Pont de Sully to the Pont de Bir-Hakeim.

First and foremost, Notre Dame’s World Heritage status calls for international principles of restoration to be integrated into the discussions on how to restore it. Decisions will have to be taken on how to consolidate its structural parts, restore the damaged surfaces, reconstruct the roof, the spire and the stained-glass windows. All these choices need to be made in accordance with the conservation principles promoted by the World Heritage Convention and expressed in the Conservation Charters of the International Council on Museums and Sites (Icomos). While the international documents, starting with the 1964 Venice Charter, do not bear legal value per se, they are recognised by the French Codes as the basis for decisions on the conservation and reconstruction of historical monuments.

So far, so good.

The editorial goes on to say that this does not preclude using modern technologies and techniques to achieve a more ‘resilient and secure’ result. These would not affect what a visitor or regular worshipper sees, however:

The “contemporaneity” of this gesture will lie in its in its construction techniques and monitoring technologies, rather than the visible forms of the building.

But — and it’s a big ‘but’ — more modern stained glass might be part of the renovation and restoration:

if new windows are needed, it could be a great opportunity for contemporary artists, as with the designs of Marc Chagall and Imi Knoebel for Reims cathedral.

UGH. No, just no. Those modern stained glass designs are horrible, and I’ve viewed a number of them in European cathedrals from the 1970s to the present.

So, although that is just one man’s opinion, he happens to be Francesco Bandarin:

an architect and former senior official at Unesco, director of its World Heritage Centre (2000-2010) and assistant director-general for culture (2010-2018).

I do think a lot of French people will be upset if Notre-Dame is not restored to the original design. Admittedly, the following discussion took place on Holy Thursday, three days after the fire, when emotions were running high. From RMC’s Les Grandes Gueules:

One of the panellists, a young Protestant, said she wanted the cathedral restored to the original. She put forward her case with passion:

She said that she was quite conservative when it comes to restoring historic buildings because they are testaments to their respective eras:

Traditionalists could find 21st century help a boon to their cause.

In 2015, Andrew Tallon, an architectural historian, had the foresight to capture the complete design of Notre-Dame digitally:

As for the actual building work, BFMTV’s high-tech expert Anthony Morel said that the use of 3D design enabled one monument in Egypt to be rebuilt to the original, down to the smallest detail. He says the same can be done with Notre-Dame. This is a great little video. Just watch the pictures:

As for recreating the Forest — the oak roof — offers have been coming in from around the world from owners of large estates with old oak forests who are willing to cut down trees a few hundred years old and replant new ones.

So, although one of France’s heritage experts said on April 16 that rebuilding the Forest cannot be done

Bertrand de Feydeau, vice-president of Fondation du Patrimoine, said the cathedral’s roof cannot be rebuilt exactly as it was before the fire because “we don’t, at the moment, have trees on our territory of the size that were cut in the 13th century.”

… do a search online for offers of oak donations and there are many news articles to read, including this one from England’s Nottingham Post on April 19:

The Duke of Rutland has pledged to send ancient oak trees from the Belvoir Castle estate to France to help with the rebuilding of Notre-Dame following a devastating fire.

The historic cathedral in Paris was hit by fire on April 15, causing huge damage to the building, large parts of which were made from wood.

Donations have been pouring in from around the world to help with the project, and British estates and gardens have also got in on the act.

Around 100 historic homes have pledged to donate oak trees which were planted hundreds of years ago to be used for timber, including the Duke of Rutland, who owns Belvoir Castle.

He said: “Anyone who lives in an old building knows there’s something special about the way it was built and the materials used.

“The trees in the original roof at Notre-Dame probably started growing over a thousand years ago.

“We’re able to donate replacements because my great-great-grandfather had the foresight to plant trees that would only be valuable long after he died.

“And in turn we’ll replant every tree we fell – someone will need them for something in another few hundred years …

Belvoir Castle itself has been destroyed by fire, last being rebuilt in 1832.

It is a member of Historic Houses, an association for independently owned historic homes and gardens in Britain.

It was the Duke of Rutland who suggested to the members they should donate oaks towards the rebuilding of Notre-Dame.

And even though they will only be able to donate a fraction of what is needed, they hope it will inspire others to do the same.

There is hope. People WANT to help — and ARE helping!

Let us continue to pray for the proper and full restoration of Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris.

My next post will look at Notre-Dame from the perspective of the positive influence of aesthetics on the meaningful religious experience.

Pointman’s is a great site for socio-political commentary not only on the present but also the past.

On January 5, 2018, Pointman wrote about phony political parties, jaundiced voters and declining governments. Please take the time to read ‘The Misrepresentation of the People Act’ in full.

Excerpts follow, emphases mine.

Political party set-ups are essentially the same wherever one lives:

The actual names vary from country to country; Republican or Democrat, Conservative or Labour, Liberal or Labor. There are always a few tiddler or schism parties wandering aimlessly around the political edges going nowhere accompanied by nothing other than their own strident outrage at something or another, but the essential shape is two big mainline parties, or in some cases as in Germany, comfortable coalitions of such long-standing that they might as well be one party anyway.

As we know, one party is in power for a time, then the opposition party takes hold of the reins, then the cycle repeats. Sometimes this works. Sometimes it doesn’t:

When it works as it should, it’s a pragmatic recognition of the debilitating aspects of the same party being in power for too long, and also acts as a natural emetic to get rid of them. That hackneyed old saying about the corrupting effect of power is very true …

Where this paradigm breaks down is when the leaders of both the parties begin to treat the whole election process as a turn and turn about thing; okay, you’ve won power for a couple of administrations and then it’ll be our turn. We won’t rock the boat too hard for you other than giving you a jolly strict telling off when you make a public cockup of something. The unspoken but understood caveat on being an effectively quiescent opposition party is that the big players in it still get a decent share of the power and money floating around that’s commensurate with such tacit co-operation.

When the system doesn’t work, it is because both parties have too many commonly-shared interests:

The people running these parties, and being run themselves by big money interests in various shapes and forms, tend to share the same education, privileged background and über political world views of what used to be termed internationalism but has now mutated into a bastardised consensus of smug political globalisation, because that’s what’s really good for their super rich patrons.

For the low-information person, including a voter, a change of government looks stable and normal. However, that is not necessarily the case:

it’s inherently unstable since it lacks any feedback to correct the corruption such power in perpetuity will inevitably engender. It pushes the day of reckoning further ahead, but that day will arrive in the end.

As always, the basic cause allowing this situation to develop is electorates disinterested in politics who sleepwalk into this mess. For too many years they’ve listened to the vague promises of jam tomorrow from political con men whose only talent is stringing the mark along.

That has troubled me, personally, especially when I speak with Americans who invariably elect the same people for years and years on end. These are congress-critters and senators who are useless in serving their constituents, yet Americans keep re-electing them. It really bugs me a lot.

Now and then, someone new and fresh emerges on the scene who is elected, but they seldom seem to be around very long. But, no one cares, and the cycle of electing self-serving politicians continues:

There is a propriety Antipodean shortcut into this situation which involves electing a reasonably sane leader who’s very quickly stabbed in the back by one of his underlings who turns out to be incompetent but has the saving grace of being eminently corrupt. Anyway, this combination of lazy electorates and seemingly Alzheimer stricken populations who can’t quite connect promises made and promises not fulfilled, will eventually break down.

This definitely happened in the United States, and one man is doing his very best to rectify the situation. That said, there is still a lot of rot in both the Democrat (un-‘Democratic’) and Republican parties, to the extent that politically-aware voters have dubbed both the Uniparty. And, what follows is a highly accurate description of the end result that the Uniparty and, in other countries, long-term coalitions bring about:

It’s all about them, not you. The vested interests prosper at the expense of impoverishing the ordinary person, irrespective of their race, colour, creed or politics …

By this late stage, the bulk of electorates are totally jaundiced about any involvement in the political process and those actively engaged in it as foot soldiers are starting to suspect they’re not even a minor player in the game, but the football. They’re regarded by their betters as highly motivated, but easily manipulated drones busy at work producing honey for their masters.

By this time we’re heading into stage 4 cancer in the body politic, but the status quo of those deeply entrenched in power will start to defend itself by any and all means available, whether legal or not. Imagine getting the snouts of a hungry herd of swine out of a steaming swill-filled trough, and you’ve got a pretty good idea of the immensity of the task.

The next stage is to create a new — phony — third political party that sweeps into power:

As the new broom of the faux opposition party being elected isn’t working any more, it’s possible to invent a third party that’s making all the right reformist noises but is still a cat’s-paw of the current background interests.

Much of the time, these parties are unsuccessful.

Pointman says this happened in Greece …

It was a freshly minted party by the power mongers which just continued on in the same old way, but was quickly found out.

… and in France, with Emmanuel Macron in 2017:

with a hitherto unknown leader Fifi Macron mincing around in front of it and making all the right noises. A few months in, he promptly junked the modest tax reforms of the previous nominally left-wing administration which were a tad too expensive on his extremely rich backers who’d put him into power to do just that. At the same time, he started lumping more and more taxes on blue and white-collar workers.

Today, Emmanuel Macron is facing the prospect of a ninth weekend of demonstrations by overly taxed, low income French men and women: the yellow vest movement — les gilets jaunes:

Despite disparaging reports you might have heard about them, they’re painfully ordinary people struggling to survive in Macron’s France. There’s a lot of them and they’re composed of that most dangerous segment of any electorate, those pushed into a corner with no way out and not much to lose.

As I listen to French talk radio (RMC) every weekday, I have been following this movement with interest — and the way in which Les Grandes Gueules are covering them. For the first few weeks, the hosts and panellists were empathetic. Before Christmas, their opinions became more critical, which made for interesting discussions as some panellists are still on the side of les gilets jaunes. Fair enough, shops and restaurants lost a lot of trade in cities at the heart of the protests, but the media seemed to focus on the violence rather than the vast majority of peaceful protesters. This year, the media, including the two Grandes Gueules presenters, are shifting the narrative a bit towards the ‘we’ve all had enough of les gilets jaunes‘.

One thing that did not help the yellow jackets’ cause was the vehicular break-in at one of the French ministries last weekend. The other was a boxer who started punching policemen, also last weekend. He had no criminal record prior to that.

Once the weekend demonstrations became a regular fixture — about a month in — violent rabble-rousers started infiltrating the movement, which has attracted a few extremists from both the Left and the Right.

This ongoing violence gave the media carte blanche to negatively cover the movement as a whole. Lately, there has been less coverage of the ordinary gilet jaunes who gather to protest because they cannot make ends meet.

The media were rightly, in my opinion, taken to task for it today. Here is Michel Onfray, a philosopher, who tells them the media have been labelling les gilets jaunes racist, sexist, homophobic and everything else pejorative under the sun. And he accuses the two Grandes Gueules hosts of similar negative coverage — equally ‘staggering’ (sidérant). They did not like that at all:

This weekend, it will be interesting to see if the government — via the police — allows any protests to go ahead.

Pointman already sussed that on January 5, and referred to preventive arrests made near the end of 2018:

Riot cops or paramilitary thugs are deployed to brutally suppress public demonstrations against an administration that’s becoming a dictatorship in all but name. Not only are public demonstrations being physically attacked, but wholesale arrests and incarcerations start to become the norm. Behind the scenes, preventive arrests start to be made. With regard to the weekend after weekend protests in France, numbers like 1400 arrests made are bandied about by the Quisling media, but what’s not being disclosed is 1000 of these were preventive arrests. Arrest and imprisonment of people before any protest has even been made. When that begins, we’re on the slippery slope with occasional stops for doing things like arresting schoolchildren and treating them like POWs.

He reminds us of the situation in Venezuela:

If the government manages to put down what is in effect a rebellion, you end up with a dictatorship with a nice name like the Democratic People’s Republic of Whatever, as happened in Venezuela and with the usual dire results for the inhabitants.

The alternative is something akin to America’s Revolutionary War, which had a good outcome.

Pointman then discussed President Trump and the constant opposition he is facing:

A third and extremely rare outcome is a natural leader primarily in touch with the people rising to power. Even more rarely, if not uniquely, that person comes from the super-rich classes, who’re usually the power brokers and puppet masters behind the various thrones, and refuses to accommodate them. They will bring to bear every power at their command to destroy him, because he’s betrayed what should be his natural class, is re-energising swathes of the electorate to re-engage with politics and they’re rallying to the colours of someone who’s actually doing things for them.

That is exactly why Trump haters should rethink their position. President Trump has done and will do more to help America and her people than any president in living memory.

As far as Europe is concerned, Macron won’t last beyond one term (if that) and Merkel has seen the writing on the wall for her chancellorship:

The heart of power within the EU was Germany with France as the supporting act, but Fifi is finished and Merkel has become an electoral liability even for her own party. Like the stricken battleship Bismarck, she’s alone and steaming around in circles with no flotilla rushing to her aid. A few more torpedoes and she, like the EU, will be out of the game.

Eastern Europe, he says, is breaking away from Western Europe’s outlook on the world, recognising the sovereignty of the nation state rather than globalism.

Ultimately, voters everywhere in the West need to wake up, smell the coffee and become more engaged with what is going on. Are we being represented or, as Pointman posits, misrepresented? I think we know the answer.

On my recent post, ‘Mid-term vote discrepancies — a dress rehearsal for 2020?’, reader Mark C posted five imperatives that the Republican party must accomplish before 2020.

He has given his permission for a guest post, which is much appreciated:

Here’s how the GOP can win back every American to its fold.

Step 1.) The Republican party needs to go back to its roots, not just to the time of Lincoln, but also to the time of Jefferson. This means that it must abandon the New Deal and take steps, not just lip service, to restore constitutional, limited, and secular government, individual rights, and economic and social freedoms.

The GOP needs to realize that liberalism (in its classic sense) is independent of either the left wing or the right wing, although liberalism was certainly a brainchild of the left wing that slipped away from it when it finally achieved power. I’m hoping that the Trump administration will do this. If not, at least it can pave the way for a presidency that will commit to do the same platform.

Step 2.) Republicans need to cease enabling extremists in both right and left wings by either adopting milder versions of leftists’ programs (like George W. Bush when he signed the No Child Left Behind Act) or doing things that will play into the hands of their detractors (like Todd Akin in 2012 did when he made a callous remark that nobody needs to worry about abortions as the result of rape because women don’t become pregnant as the result of rape).

For this to happen, the GOP must adopt a new way of recruiting new members. For instance, detractors have been accusing the Republican party of having members with ties to neo-Nazi and neo-Confederate groups, so it behooves the GOP to exclude such people from the party and start recruiting more sensible people from diverse background sharing a common appreciation of the tenets of (classical) liberalism. We already have the likes of Brandon Straka and Candace Owens, but we need more of them, which leads to the next step.

Step 3.) Many Americans fall in love with leftism because they think that private entities such as churches, charities, and non-public schools have been failing them. This the Republicans should bear in mind.

Thus, Republicans who are schoolteachers, CEOs, and managers of charities must make the first move in helping many worse-off kids have quality education, talented yet unemployed minorities have jobs, and neglected people such as elderly veterans and laid-off employees start a new life, so that people will no longer depend on the government for help. Also, Republicans need to remind everyone that anyone, even a leftist, can start a business, and they can cite as an example Bill Gates who gave free contraception to women after the Trump administration resolved to stop its governmental funding.

For Republicans who sell guns, they can provide free gun training, especially to minorities, starting with their non-white, non-male, and non-Christian friends if they have one.

Republicans involved in businesses and other private organizations must make genuine efforts to help those in need so as to deprive leftists of their base.

Step 4.) The GOP must hire more reliable advisers to its fold. Dinesh D’Souza isn’t enough. It needs people like Larry Elder and Thomas Sowell to strengthen the party, especially in economic matters.

Also, I know of a libertarian schoolteacher that can help the GOP get its act together. His name is Kelley L. Ross, PhD, the author of the online philosophy journal friesian.com. He ran for Congress several times as a Libertarian, and I think that he can advise President Trump as well if he resolves to join the GOP. Here’s a primer to his political standpoint at http://friesian.com/ross/kindof.htm.

Step 5.) This one is the most important of all steps that I’ve listed so far. Republicans need to be articulate when it comes to stating political truths. That involves vocabulary.

It means that Republicans must cease adopting the terminology of its detractors. For example, Republicans must always say “illegal alien” and “illegal alien intrusion” instead of “illegal immigrant”, “illegal immigration”, “undocumented immigrant”, “undocumented immigration”, or even “immigration”. Doing otherwise would jeopardize their reputations. Rep. Steve King is one recent example of this.

Also, Republicans can smash accusations of racism by saying that racial segregation and discrimination against women mandated by the government are enemies of the free market and the principles of Founding Fathers.

Well, I’ve said what I had to tell the GOP to win back the country. Whether it does what I’ve listed here is up to them.

These are so straightforward and simple, yet, how many Republicans will take these on board?

I will offer a few qualifiers of my own on the above. So far, President Trump is the only Republican following Mark C’s five-step plan.

Re Step 1: The Republican National Committee must craft a set of talking points for Party members: a one- or two-sided card with a summary and a detailed booklet explaining them, not unlike a short and a long catechism. For example, the GOP must make clear that smaller government does not have an impact on ‘free stuff’ for the truly needy. Another example is that, since ridding industry of crippling regulations, manufacturers are able to operate more efficiently:

It is also important to note, that at the same time, the US has the cleanest air in the world:

On Step 2, Trump’s Prison Reform plan is a brave and necessary one, even if middle-class Republicans might balk.

Step 3 assumes that Republicans are not active in charitable endeavours. Personally, I think they are, but they operate under a biblical principle of not boasting about their good deeds. However, I agree that they should get more publicity from conservative media and the Republican Party. I’m not sure that Bill Gates and free contraception is a good talking point, but I understand the principle of private enterprise helping to improve society. The GOP corporate tax cuts have enabled businesses to give more to charity. On January 31, 2018, the White House picked up media points about the benefits that lower taxes provide, including charitable giving. The Wall Street Journal had an article about Pfizer at that time, which said in part (emphasis mine):

As a result of savings from the tax changes, Pfizer made a $200 million contribution to the company’s charitable foundation in the fourth quarter, plans to pay $100 million in bonuses to employees and will make a $500 million contribution to its U.S. pension plan by the end of September. The company said it plans to buy back $5 billion in shares this year and invest $5 billion in manufacturing and other capital projects in the U.S. over the next five years.

I wholeheartedly agree that Step 4 is vital. Democrats have dozens of pundits, and Republicans have very few.

Step 5 is also critical. Republicans do need to use correct vocabulary. They also need to make it clear that a Republican president, Abraham Lincoln, signed the Emancipation Proclamation after the Civil War and that Republicans were the ones promoting civil rights in the 1960s via the late senator Everett Dirksen who helped to write and pass the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Civil Rights Act of 1968. Interestingly, both Lincoln and Dirksen were from Illinois. They must also stop calling Democrats ‘liberals’; today’s Democrats are leftists, totally illiberal.

Well, there’s no better — and easier — place to start with talking points than the GOP chairwoman’s — Ronna Romney McDaniel’s — Twitter account. Go for it, Ronna. Make the Grand Old Party great again!

In closing, I would add a sixth step to Mark C’s five. Republicans must develop an aggressive GOTV — Get Out The Vote — plan that rivals the Democrats’. They have to learn how to go door-to-door to canvass and also make sure they distribute tons of flyers with varying messages, depending on the stage of the election campaign.

Regardless about what one’s personal opinions are about the much-derided Stephen Bannon, his documentary about President Trump is one which must be seen, particularly with America’s upcoming mid-term elections in mind.

This is his complete video, Trump@War, which is well worth watching. It is one hour and 16 minutes long:

‘Explicit version’ in this instance does not mean anything a family cannot view together, unless they find President Trump’s manner of speech appalling. If they do, then this documentary is not for them. They are not Americans who respect the polity of the Great Republic.

The first third of the film explores Trump’s candidacy from the summer of 2015, complete with film of the escalator scene, through to 2016 with the Left’s unhinged violence.

After 40 minutes or so, Trump’s first term, the present one, unfolds, with its many accomplishments nationally and internationally.

Trump @War makes clear that the US president has many enemies at home, however, what is worth noting is that many of America’s former enemies respect the man who is attempting to wrestle them into a peace-loving proposition.

For this reason, please, America, vote a straight Republican ticket on or before Tuesday, November 6, 2018. Thank you. The world depends on it.

In closing, below are two important pro-Republican adverts to watch. I hope any Americans reading pass these onto their friends before November 6. (There’s rough language in the second, but it is good that it was left in, because it shows how much hate that guy has.)

Thank you in advance for passing these along!

The GOP — Grand Old Party — has come out with some good adverts in the run up to the mid-term elections.

A recent one is about the violence that Democrat legislators encourage.

Before getting to the ad, however, here are even more examples of how the unhinged Left are attacking Republicans, even wet ones like Senator Jeff Flake from Arizona:

The Secret Service has also been investigating people who have sent threatening items sent through the post to Republicans and their family members:

Now on to the recent ad from the Republican Party:

Here’s the YouTube version:

That’s former Speaker of the House (yes) Nancy Pelosi (D-California) indirectly advocating violence against political opponents. The Daily Wire‘s Ryan Saavedra reports her quote (emphases mine):

“We have to have total clarity about what we do when it comes to everything — a woman’s right to choose, gay marriage … whether it’s about immigration, whether it’s about gun safety, whether it’s about climate …” Pelosi said earlier this week. “I think that we owe the American people to be there for them, for their financial security, respecting the dignity and worth of every person in our country, and if there’s some collateral damage for some others who do not share our view, well, so be it, but it shouldn’t be our original purpose.”

Pelosi was Speaker of the House under Obama for a time and famously said of the bill for Obamacare:

We have to pass it to find out what’s in it.

Incredibly, millions of Americans believed that line.

One hopes they will not make the same mistake on Tuesday, November 6.

It would be a shame if Pelosi were once again Speaker of the House.

Vote Republican.

Senator Lindsey Graham is a bit of a wet Republican.

However, he is passionate in seeing Republican judges appointed, such as Justice Kavanaugh. The crazy Left gave him a lot of flak for that.

On Tuesday, October 16, 2018, he appeared on FOX & friends to give his viewpoint on voting Democrat in the upcoming mid-term elections:

The Democrats of the 21st century are all about chaos, intimidation, violence and open borders.

Vote Republican on or before November 6.

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