Trump v. Pelosi v. AOC


Donald Trump is running for reelection, and it seems that he’d rather run against the sort of Progressive Democrat whose politics are strongly different from his own—”a choice not an echo” to borrow an old campaign slogan. While AOC won’t be the 2020 nominee, she’s the face of the Democrat’s for now, and that seems to suit Trump just fine.

Nancy Pelosi’s goals aren’t much different from She Guevara’s, but the two differ radically on how to achieve those goals. After six months as a congresscritter, AOC has shown that she is unwilling and/or unable to work within the established congressional order. She wants revolution now. Pelosi’s decades of practical politics have taught her that a recurring first step toward her goals is winning elections. She’s also seen what happens when her side’s politics moves too fast for the voters. See, eg., the elections of 1994 and 2010.

Pelosi isn’t all that popular with voters outside the costal blue zones, but recent poling shows that AOC and her squad of newbies are unpopular even in many Democrat strongholds. Thus, Trump would much rather have She Guevara as the face of the Democratic Party. As the coming primaries settle on the Democrat’s presidential nominee, that candidate will push AOC aside, but her effect on the party’s branding will linger, and Trump sees that as to his advantage.

So Trump is likely to continue baiting AOC and her squad. And given their mix of arrogance and inexperience, I suspect they’ll keep taking the bait.

Oh, one more thing … I’ve seen Trump’s tweets from last weekend labeled as “racist.” He suggested that a foreign-born congresswoman return to her homeland, straighten it out, and then come back to show us how it was done. How is that challenge racist?

Stressed Cities


WalletHub has a report posted listing the cities in the U.S. with the most-stressed and least-stressed populations. (H/T, Mark Tapscott at Instapundit) I took the cities with the stress scores in the 90th percentile or higher (i.e., the worst 10 percent) and looked up the party affiliations of their mayors. The Gentle Reader may make whatever he wishes of these data.

They’re Not Going to Like Their New Rules


Victor Davis Hanson has a post over at American Greatness titled Would President Joe Biden Become 25th Amendment Material?.

Biden is only the most egregious example of the impending applicable double standard that progressives have crafted though their own unhinged effort to abort the Trump presidency. Knowingly or not, they have made the once normal—allow an incoming president to face the consequences of his policies in his first midterm election and ensuing reelection bid—into the taboo.

Apparently, Democrats never imagined that their own slate of candidates might, according to their own standards, have far greater liabilities than Trump himself. And as we are likely soon to see, and as Biden himself has darkly hinted, ol’ Joe’s sins may pale in comparison to those of his now acerbic rivals.

We are in new territory where nothing is sacred, nothing is a gaffe, nothing is just a slip of the tongue—given that any means necessary were long ago justified to achieve the end of ousting Trump. And those means are soon going to be applied to the very politicos who recalibrated and welcomed them—and Biden first, and most embarrassingly, of all.

Read the whole thing.

A More Basic Question


Paul Mirengoff has a post over at PowerLine with A Question for Joe Biden. Biden showed some backbone during the last debate by refusing to apologize for his position on forced school bussing of children across communities for the purpose of achieving racial balance in school. During the Obama administration, HUD promulgated regulations aimed at  “affirmatively furthering fair housing.” AFFH has the goal of moving whole families across town to new neighborhoods to racial balance neighborhood populations. The Trump administration has reinterpreted those regulations, effectively putting them on hold.

Here’s Miregoff’s question for Biden—

I’d like to hear Biden say whether he supports the idea of the federal government conditioning grants to localities on their willingness to require that a certain amount of housing in mostly White neighborhoods be occupied by African-Americans. If Biden says he does this, and I think he almost has to, I’d like to hear him explain why it’s a good idea whereas busing was a bad one.

One possible answer would be that the goal of racial balance is good and that having minority children spread through the community eliminates the need for such bandaids as forced school busing.

I have a more basic question. Is racial balance for its own sake always a good goal? The last census data is almost a decade old, but it’s what we’ve got for now. It showed that blacks make up about 12.6 percent of the U.S. population and that Hispanics make up around 16.3 percent. Should NBA teams be forced to staff their benches with more Hispanics than Blacks? Or should the Lakers have different quotas from the Celtics because of the different balances in their cities? Or should we force families to move from LA to Boston in the name of balance?

Or should we let NBA teams hire on the basis of merit? If we allow a meritocracy in sports, why not in other businesses? Why not elsewhere?

The problem of sorting for merit is that half the population is below average. As a result, any system that sorts for merit tends to disproportionally reward top performers. As a rule of thumb, roughly the square root of any population will do half the work. (This may also be stated as 20 percent of the customers drink 80 percent of the beer.) That rule implies that in a country the size of America about 18,000 people would control half the wealth—and that about a dozen would have control of ten percent of the wealth. That’s not too far off from what we see in the Real World.

So here’s a yet more basic question, if we want to allow the best to rise to the top and given that the Marxist experiments of the 20th century all ended disastrously, what can we do to provide humanely for those among us who aren’t successful?