Backslid and Nancy

Over the weekend Donald Trump caved in over the government shutdown, agreeing to a budget, albeit temporary, which contained no funding for his wall. Those who a few days ago were saying Trump’s inability to compromise was destroying the nation are now hooting and mocking him for compromising. Given another showdown is on the horizon, this might not be very sensible. I’m not one of those people who believe Trump is playing 14D underwater chess, but I do think if another standoff occurs, he’ll be less inclined to back down. The fact that he did this time is pretty remarkable, and the simply truth is he’s been outsmarted by Nancy Pelosi who is a lot better at this hardball politics game than he is. There were good reasons why the Democrats wanted her back as speaker, and not some dimwit in her twenties.

However, in characteristic fashion, Trump may have inadvertently skewered the Democrats in the long-term. One thing I’ve not understood is how the chattering classes in Europe and America are so upset about Trump’s wall. A couple of weeks ago one of my lecturers, who is neither American or Mexican, wrung their hands and said “I do hope it won’t get built.”  Now you can argue that the wall is too expensive, or it will be ineffective, or it won’t look nice. What I don’t get is why people think foreign citizens should be free to enter the US for any purpose and any length of time without going through the formal channels. Trump appears to have got whole swathes of the global middle classes to adopt open border policies that were previously the preserve of the lunatic fringes, including the Democrats.

Whatever you think of the crudeness of Trump’s speech and the symbolism of an actual wall, immigration is a major concern to a lot of people, and most sensible folk believe borders should be controlled in some way. Otherwise, what’s the point in having a visa system at all? The Democrats forcing Trump into a humiliating climbdown over the wall won’t change that. Also, those who voted for Trump with the expectation that he will curb immigration are seriously unimpressed. They are asking, not without reason, why he didn’t get this wall built when the Republicans controlled Congress. These people are not suddenly going to decide maybe unfettered immigration is a good thing after all; rather, they are going to vote for someone who is deadly serious about grasping this nettle regardless of his other policies. The Democrats meanwhile have given a clear message to the electorate that they don’t believe their borders should be policed in any meaningful way.

Ultimately, citizens get the politicians, government, and country they deserve. If enough Americans – and indeed Europeans – vote for open borders, then so be it. But let nobody say they didn’t know what they were getting. For all the talk about the dangers of populist strongmen popping up everywhere, it’s yet to dawn on the ruling classes what’s feeding them. I have an inkling we’ve not seen anything yet.

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19 thoughts on “Backslid and Nancy

  1. A couple of weeks ago one of my lecturers, who is neither American or Mexican, wrung their hands and said “I do hope it won’t get built.”

    When you point out that most of Trump’s policies are just an extension Obama’s or Clinton’s (in this case Obama and Clinton built fences, or the separating children policy) you get looks of initially disbelief and then as if you have two heads.

    I also think Trump missed a trick, he should declare he’s building the wall out of solar panels with occasional camera towers doubling as wind turbines.

  2. When you point out that most of Trump’s policies are just an extension Obama’s or Clinton’s (in this case Obama and Clinton built fences, or the separating children policy) you get looks of initially disbelief and then as if you have two heads.

    Exactly. Their opposition to everything Trump does is so fanatical they’ve accidentally signed up to open borders, something no sane politician ought to do.

  3. Trump’s most appealing quality remains not being HRC. I like the disruption he causes but he is basically full of shit and seems destined to disappoint his base. Still, it could all have been much worse …

  4. Trump is USA Gorbatchev. He is trying to save something what is unsaveable.

    Well, let,s imagine that Trump gets his wall and immigration limits. Next president will take them all down and that,s it.

  5. Actually, Scott Adams has a very different take on this, and considering his record on things Trump, he will be right again. Trump is moving the frame and has put the democrats on record opposing something they want.

    As for not using the republicans whilst they had the majority, are you referring to the same bunch of idiots who couldn’t get rid of Obamacare, or who did everything they could to impede him? Those republicans?

  6. Those republicans?

    Fair point, but one would have thought Republicans too dim to write a healthcare policy would at least be able to master sticking their paws in the air and saying yea.

  7. Fair point, but one would have thought Republicans too dim to write a healthcare policy would at least be able to master sticking their paws in the air and saying yea.

    I take it you don’t meet many Republicans.

  8. …otherwise what’s the point in having visas?
    … other wise what’s the point of the nation state?

    FIFY

  9. He’s only given the Dems 21 days (or whatever period it is, basically nothing) for them to negotiate an agreed policy over the wall with him. If they give him the bums rush (which of course they will) then the shutdown will be back on. Then he can say ‘Well I tried, I gave my opponents an opportunity to negotiate in good faith and they stuck two fingers up at me, so this time I’m in for the long haul’.

  10. On the TV prog ‘Saturday kitchen’ they interviewed some growers in California crying about not having workers and the whole industry being potentially destroyed complete with sad faced nodding interviewer. My sister has a vineyard in Napa and I know from being involved with the process that the Mexican workers are skilled, hard working and well paid….they are also on legal seasonal contracts and take their money back home for a few months each year. Nobody from Trump down wants a wall to keep out everybody its just that inconvenient word ‘illegal’ seems to mess up the lefties….just build the thing.

  11. He has also defused the “gubmint workers are starving” cockrot that the media were trying to run with. He has been super-reasonable and the Dems have told him to fuck off. If he has sense its time for hardball. State of Emergency and if these ninth circuit Judgeboys try to stop him then arrest them for treason in their own courts.

  12. >Ultimately, citizens get the politicians, government, and country they deserve. If enough Americans – and indeed Europeans – vote for open borders, then so be it. But let nobody say they didn’t know what they were getting.

    Except in Ireland, where everybody wants an open border, but we can’t have one without total regulatory alignment, because reasons…

  13. Now you can argue that the wall is too expensive, or it will be ineffective, or it won’t look nice.

    Those are pretty much my positions, but it seems the only discourse possible is shouting “open borders!” or “racist!” at each other.

    They are asking, not without reason, why he didn’t get this wall built when the Republicans controlled Congress.

    Thank you!! It’s incredibly frustrating when one points this out to “rightosphere” types and receive lame ass partisan excuses or blank stares in response. The fact that the R’s didn’t get it done proves to me that neither they nor Trump really want to have a wall, at least not before 2020. After all, he perhaps won on that wedge issue, and if it gets funded (through the highly imperfect legislative and appropriations process) then maybe enough R voters stay home and a D is elected.

  14. What’s to hate about a good wall, anyway? Some pertinent statistics: Great Wall of China: In 2013, 10,720,000 tourists visited the Badaling and Mutianyu areas of the wall.

    Berlin Wall: More than 1.1 million people visited the Berlin Wall in 2018, according to the Berlin Wall Foundation, representing a new record.

    Hadrian’s Walll: The six sites recieved around 250,000 visitors in 2011/2012.

    Walls of Jericho: No visitor numbers available. Plenty of trumpets, though.

    To paraphrase Field of Dreams: Build a wall, and they will come. Probably not exactly what the Donald has in mind – but then, if they come bearing entrance fees…

  15. “I’m not one of those people who believe Trump is playing 14D underwater chess, but I do think if another standoff occurs, he’ll be less inclined to back down. ”

    I do agree, but he is playing standard chess. The edge he has is that he is clearly playing more than one move ahead, his opponents are absolutely not.

  16. imo Trump allowed Pelosi to win a pyrrhic victory to enable Trump to deliver his State Of The Union speech.

    The Dems opposition to border wall is hypocrisy and stupidity akin to Abbot. Clintons & Obama were tough on illegals and approved walls.

  17. The prevailing opinion seems to be that Trump is going to wait until the 14th, claim the Democrats have Had Their Chance, then declare a National Emergency, fund the wall that way and devil take the hindmost.

    If he does, it will absolutely set off impeachment proceedings. Which he’ll survive, because they can’t get it through the Senate, but what will happen afterwards is anybody’s guess. It might just start the civil war.

  18. Daniel,

    “It might just start the civil war.”

    Maybe, but it will be very short one.

  19. Aside from building their future vote base, “liberals” have no problems with unfettered immigration because it doesn’t really effect them / their pockets / the circles that they move in.

    Perhaps it’s time to welcome third world professional qualifications as being equivalent to the ones in the local market. Imagine the change in attitudes if say Latin American journalists, teachers etc were invited to come to California and practice their professions there.

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