Several death sentences appeared in the past 72 hours. Judge, jury, executioner is President-Elect Donald J. Trump.
Death Sentence #1: “We Don’t Need You Guys Anymore”. Die, Big Media, Die. This death sentence was spoken by Dick Cheney, authored by Donald J. Trump:
Cheney To CNN’s Barbara Starr: Trump Took Us To Point Where We Don’t Need You Guys Anymore
CHENEY: I think one of the reasons people get so concerned about the tweets is it is sort of a way around the press. He doesn’t have to rely upon, uh, rely upon — this is the modern era, modern technology. He’s at the point where we don’t need you guys anymore.
Die Big Media, die. Trump gets around Big Media with his Tweets. A single camera trained on the elevators in Trump Tower commands all the attention. The camera ignores the Big Media Trump haters. The American public can see who goes up and down without a pundit. [We’ll have more from Cheney shortly.]
Death Sentence #2: “President-elect Trump also congratulated President Tsai on becoming President of Taiwan earlier this year.” The wise Gordon Chang understands the immeasurable vastness of what President-Elect Donald J. Trump did here:
Beijing today lodged a formal protest with the U.S. because President-elect Donald Trump, bypassing established diplomatic channels, spoke to Taiwan’s Tsai Ing-wen yesterday by telephone. [snip]
Why? In a few short minutes over the phone, Trump implicitly recognized Taiwan’s status as a sovereign state, thereby breaking with decades of settled China policy.
The call, as many have noted is the first known interaction between a U.S. president or president-elect with his Taiwan counterpart since the Carter administration broke diplomatic relations with the island.
Regardless of what Trump and Tsai said to each other, the fact the call took place would be sufficient to upset Beijing’s leaders, who view Taiwan as part of their People’s Republic of China.
Tsai, on the other hand, believes she heads a state called the Republic of China. Formally, her government takes the position it has sovereignty over all China but, as a practical matter, acts as if it is sovereign over only the main island of Taiwan and scattered islands it in fact administers.
Washington recognizes Beijing as the lawful government of China but in substance maintains the dispute between the two sides is unresolved and insists the resolution of the matter, when it occurs, be peaceful. The Taiwan Relations Act, U.S. legislation passed in 1979, provides for unofficial ties with Taipei and creates limited obligations to protect the island from Beijing. This American posture has continued, with only minor modification, since that time.
Trump, however, seemed to change everything Friday.
The entire take on China/Taiwan by Gordon Chang deserves a reading. China for a long time has played North Korea and nuclear bombs against the United States and its allies in an obvious way but the West and its hapless diplomats have responded like running dogs for a decayed decadent system. Trump changes all that.
Let’s go back to that Dick Cheney appearance:
FMR. VICE PRESIDENT DICK CHENEY: One of the most important things [President-elect Trump] can do is exactly the opposite of what his predecessor did. With respect to Iran and nuclear weapons, and don’t make the mistakes that the situation he is inheriting from the Obama administration represented. With respect to our status in the world, the capabilities of our forces, the belief on the part of I believe many of our friends and allies that they can no longer trust the United States or count on our guarantees. I think we need to do major progress and reverse the Obama policies and not that’s not a place for President Trump to start.
That’s pretty much what we wrote last month: do the opposite of what Obama did. And what Carter did too. American policy on China is not working. Rewrite the China policy. President-Elect Donald J. Trump pronounced a death sentence on the currently not working China policy. Foreign policy experts are shocked and in a fury. President-Elect Donald J. Trump is exactly right and Trump changed China policy before he is president, with a single telephone call he answered. Good job!
Chang sums it up:
What Trump has done is not “reset” Washington’s relations with China but put them on an entirely new footing. Up to now, Beijing has kept the initiative, and American presidents, especially George W. Bush and Obama, have merely reacted, trying to build friendly relations in spite of increasingly bold Chinese moves. The concept was that Washington had to maintain cooperative ties, increasingly considered an end in itself.
Trump, by seemingly not caring about Beijing’s reaction, has cut China down to size, telling its autocrats he does not fear them.
Just about everyone assumed the Chinese would create a crisis for Trump in his first months in office, just as they created crises for both George W. Bush—in April 2001 with the detention of the crew of the U.S. Navy EP-3—and his successor—the harassment of the Navy’s unarmed reconnaissance vessels, the Impeccable and Victorious, in March and May 2009.
Instead, Trump took the initiative and created a crisis for China’s leaders, and he did that more than a month before taking the oath of office.
Therefore, Beijing is bound to find the next months unfamiliar and unsettling.
There is, if you need a metaphor, a rather large bull in the china shop. And, yes, that could be a good thing.
Death Sentence #3: “President-Elect Donald J. Trump.” The deadliest sentence of all. It finished off the surrender monkeys of the West. It destroys the Euro. It destroys the European Union. It destroyed Matteo Renzi on Sunday, as predicted a month ago:
Trump’s triumph puts Italy’s Renzi in difficult position
Donald Trump’s unexpected victory in the U.S. presidential election is likely to make it even harder for Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi to win a crucial referendum on constitutional reform set for December.
Renzi was one of the few world leaders to publicly endorse Hillary Clinton and Trump’s triumph has not only put the Italian premier in a difficult diplomatic position, it has also underlined the rise of anti-elite sentiment around the world.
“This factor is weighing against Renzi because at the moment for many Italians he represents the establishment,” said Roberto D’Alimonte, politics professor at Luiss University in Rome. [snip]
“The Trump win does show that populism continues in 2016 and suggests a ‘no’ vote in the Italian referendum could be stronger than we assumed,” David Zahn, the head of European fixed income at U.S. fund manager Franklin Templeton, told Reuters. [snip]
Italy’s anti-establishment 5-Star Movement currently heads the opinion polls and its founder, Beppe Grillo, hailed Trump’s victory, seeing it as a vindication of his own maverick stance.
“It is those who dare, the obstinate, the barbarians who will take the world forward. We are the barbarians! The real idiots, populists and demagogues are the journalists and the establishment intellectuals,” Grillo wrote on his blog.
Jumping on the U.S. election bandwagon with an eye to the forthcoming referendum, former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi’s Forza Italia (Go Italy!) party put out Tweets saying “In America, they voted NO”.
The group’s parliamentary leader Renato Brunetta called on Renzi to resign immediately and not even wait until Dec. 4, saying his pro-Clinton stance had weakened Italy’s standing.
“From this day forward Matteo Renzi is politically finished, he is a dead man walking,” Brunetta said in a statement. “No other European country sided with one of the two contenders like Italy did. Now Renzi must reap the consequences and take responsibility for his bad choices.”
When Beppe Grillo started to make headlines as the leader of Italy’s biggest protest party more than six years ago, it was hard to avoid the puns. A comedian turned politician, Grillo was laughed at and branded a “clown.”
But by 2013, the laughing subsided, and German magazine Der Spiegel already had called him “the most dangerous man in Europe.” Three years later, he may finally be living up to that description, according to his critics.
On Sunday, a majority of Italians voted against legislative reforms in a referendum, according to major exit polls. Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, who had pushed for the reforms and was forced to call the referendum, admitted defeat on Sunday evening and announced that he would hand in his resignation on Monday. [snip]
Similar to Trump’s “drain the swamp” political message, Grillo has taken a strong anti-establishment and anti-corruption stance, accusing Renzi of preventing economic and anti-corruption reforms. [snip]
Referring to German Chancellor Angela Merkel and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, Gillo said in an interview with the Financial Times last year: “They have a kind of illness, it’s called alexithymia, which means difficulty recognizing the emotions of others: pain, pleasure, joy. . . . They don’t care if they have to put tens of millions of people into hunger to balance an account, it’s collateral damage. We’ve entrusted our lives to people who know nothing about life,” he said.
Life just got a boost in Italy and world-wide because of Donald J. Trump.
Will this last? Can this go on? Is this Donald J. Trump victory/victories just a one time magic moment that will flicker away like a candle that dies leaving only a trail of smoke? Look to Pennsylvania for the answer.
Death Sentence #4: “he made Philadelphia irrelevant.”
As we analyze the numbers from election night, we can only be amazed. The Decision Desk analysis concludes that everything Hillary2016 did was right if only the opponent was not Donald J. Trump. Michael Barone finally came to the conclusion we did last year that Hillary2016 would destroy lumps like Jeb Bush, John Kasich, even Ted Cruz:
Would Another Republican Have Defeated Hillary Clinton?
Donald Trump charted a new course to the presidency, and both parties have a great deal to learn from it. [snip]
That opening was the fact that Democrats were taking for granted their above-national-average support from non-college-educated outstate voters in their determination to build a new, “ascendant” majority of blacks, Hispanics, single women, and Millennials. They figured that outstate Obama voters were locked into the Democratic party and didn’t need any special attention. Turns out they weren’t and they did.
So the familiar partisan lines of the past 20 years have been redrawn, and now we have a more downscale Republican party and a Democratic party confined to its coastal and campus cocoons.
As we wrote so many times before, the Obama “coalition of the ascendant” was a suitable demographic for a situation comedy on TV, but not as a foundation for a political party that wants to govern and grow. The numbers from election 2016 confirm our analysis.
Will it all last? As Decision Desk notes, what Donald J. Trump did was astounding and deserving of respect:
Ring Around the Collar: The Philadelphia Suburbs And The 2016 Election
In June, I authored an article for The Federalist in which I argued that Donald Trump would not win Pennsylvania because any gains he might make with white working class voters would be insufficient to overcome the steep losses he was likely to suffer in the Philadelphia area. [snip]
Trump did badly in the Philly collar. From the Clinton campaign’s perspective not badly enough, perhaps; and certainly not the 20-30% debacle many polls were forecasting. Yet his margins in the Philadelphia area normally would have been enough to keep the Keystone State in the Democrats’ vaunted “blue wall.” Barack Obama won 690,000 votes in the Philly suburbs in 2012. Hillary Clinton received 729,000. Romney got 567,000. Trump dropped to 550,000. That’s a swing of 46,000 votes to Clinton. [snip]
What Donald Trump demonstrated with this year’s electorate is that a historic turnout by white working class voters could be and in fact was – contrary to the expectations of all but a handful of pundits – sufficient to negate the Democrats’ traditional advantage in the Philadelphia region and put Pennsylvania in the GOP column for the first time since 1988. Whether this lesson can be repeated is an open question, but it is one students of American politics will be studying for many years to come.
Since this post was published, the City of Philadelphia released its final vote tallies for the 2016 election. Donald Trump’s total increased to just under 109,000 votes, while Clinton’s soared to 584,000 votes, an increase of 21,000 and a mere 4,000 short of Obama’s 2012 total. Delaware County also has updated its figures. Hillary Clinton’s margin improved to 67,000 votes, as she did 12,000 votes better than Barack Obama did in 2012. Trump’s total in Delco also rose by 4,000 votes. He now stands 5,000 votes above Mitt Romney there. [snip]
Incorporating this new data yields the following updated results. Clinton’s total in the Philadelphia collar stands at 737,000 votes, an improvement of 47,000 on Barack Obama’s 2012 total of 690,000. Trump’s total rises to 554,000, which is 13,000 short of Romney’s count. This means Clinton’s improvement in the suburbs, which initially stood at 46,000, is now 59,000 votes. The updated totals in Philadelphia also reduce the swing there from 35,000 towards Trump to a more modest 17,000. Instead of coming out of the Philadelphia region only 11,000 votes ahead of Barack Obama, as my original calculations indicated, Clinton came out 32,000 votes ahead. What these updated results tell us, therefore, is that in Philadelphia Hillary Clinton performed more like Barack Obama, and Donald Trump performed even worse than Mitt Romney, than initially believed. In other words, Trump’s victory in Pennsylvania, impressive as it was, was even more impressive than it seemed at first glance.
Trump pulled off the near impossible: he made Philadelphia irrelevant. Whatever one thinks of the man, this feat is worthy of, nay demands, respect.
Read that again: Trump’s victory in Pennsylvania, impressive as it was, was even more impressive than it seemed at first glance. He made “Philadelphia irrelevant.”
It’s a death sentence for the Dims.
China, Europe, those that want to destroy the West, take heed. President Donald J. Trump is not Barack Obama. Trump is not even president yet and already the heads roll.
America’s enemies, take heed – America and the West are back, ready and willing to fight.