He took the bait, but she didn’t set the hook

In debate, Trump is no Mitt Romney.  In his first debate with Obama, Romney sliced and diced, and made Obama look clueless.  He was perfect.  Cruz, or Rubio, or Pence, or a lot of smart conservatives, could have done the same to Clinton last night.

Trump did well at first, but then he started to get pissed off.   He got trolled.  And when the brass at NBC signaled to Lester Holt that he’d better jump in and join the trolling, things got worse.  Trump seemed to let his temper get the best of him.  If Anderson Cooper gets under his skin the way Holt did, he’ll “lose” the second debate as badly as the first.

“Lose” is in quotes because this was the first period of a three period game, and he’s down a goal, but has two periods to make it up.  He’s still in it.  He didn’t disqualify himself.  And to the guys at the union halls in Macomb County, Michigan, he won.  These guys don’t like plastic bananas like Clinton, and they’re still pissed off about NAFTA, 22 years after it was ratified.  He’s got their vote, it’s in the bag.  Four years ago they didn’t bother to show up, and it cost Romney the election.  They’ll turn out for Trump.

But he needs help with women, and he’s got to help himself.  The town hall format in the next debate, just two weeks away, should allow him to show sympathy for the legitimate concerns of the people asking the questions.  And if smug socialite Anderson Cooper (heir to the Vanderbilt fortune) starts getting too cute, Trump should cut him off.  Cleverly, though, with a scalpel, not a meat ax.

Then comes the grand finale, on October 19th, with Fox’s Chris Wallace in the moderator’s chair.  The last debate is the most important (unless it’s one of the first two  — nobody knows anything), and it will set up the last, crucial, three weeks of the campaign.  If Trump can get a bounce out of it, he can ride the momentum all the way to November 8th, and the White House.

Roger Simon at PJ Media picked up on something I didn’t see.   Right at the end, when Trump was defending himself against charges of sexism, he was tempted to go after Hillary Clinton, as The Enabler of a Sexual Predator.  But he checked himself.  He says it was because Chlelsea Clinton was in the audience, and it made him uncomfortable.  By this time he was so pissed off that he might have blown the whole thing.  But he restrained himself, and lives to fight another day.

Also at PJ Media, Ted Cruz gives his assessment, and it’s worth a read.  If you admire Cruz, as I do, his explanation of his non-endorsement in Cleveland, and his recent reversal, makes complete sense.  If you don’t like Cruz, it’a all CYA.  But what he says sounds true to me.

So there is hope.  He’ll need to change, but if there’s one thing Trump’s good at, it’s maneuver.



Raiders of the Permanent Fund

You’ll find no one in public life more ethical and conscientious than all the men and women who have served as public members of the Board of Trustees of the Alaska Permanent Fund Corporation.  It’s a six member board, with four public members and two representing the Governor.

Now, for the first time in its 40 year history, the APFC is in danger of being controlled by a faction dedicated to raiding it.  Gov. Bill Walker needs just one more vote, and he’ll be able to get his hands on the Alaska people’s $50 billion nest egg.  The only thing that can stop him is the Alaska Legislature, by refusing to confirm his next appointment of a public member.

Walker made his first run at all this money just recently, when his lawyer tried to get the Permanent Fund to agree to lend the State of Alaska something close to $1 billion.  It would be purchasing oil tax credits from the companies which are due them, relieving the State from this legal obligation.   The APFC would buy them at a discount, and when the State eventually pays them off in full, the APFC will make a tidy profit.

Three of the public members saw through this scheme, and shot it down.  But if Walker gets his next appointment confirmed, say good bye to a billion dollars that belongs to the people of Alaska.

But Walker wants more than a measly billion dollars.  He wants Permanent Fund money to build a gas line south from Prudhoe Bay to Nikiski, on the Kenai Peninsula.  This is the district of Republican Speaker of the House Mike Chenault, and if this line is built Chenault and all his friends will get rich.

Vince Beltrami, the head of the Alaska AFL-CIO, is all in on this scam.  His members will make a lot of  money building a gas line, and that will make him rich too.

This gas line, if it were ever built, would be the greatest boondoggle of the 21st century.  Tens of billion of dollars, money that belongs to the people of Alaska, would be wasted on a project that makes no economic sense.  If it made sense, the oil companies, who actually own the gas, would invest in it themselves.

Critical to this scheme is the defeat of Republican State Senator Cathy Geissel, in District “N”, south Anchorage.  Beltrami is running against her as an Independent, and he’s fully funded, and has the support of the liberal Anchorage media.   The future of the Permanent Fund may depend on the outcome of this race.

Since this is my old district, I’m going to get involved, and we’ll beat Beltrami and protect the Permanent Fund.  Gov. Jay Hammond created the Permanent Fund, and in Alaska politics, I was a Hammond man, and still am.

Devil with a blue dress on

Since we won’t get Jennifer Flowers at the debate, how about Monica Lewinsky?

Actually, there is one piece of substance that I hope Trump deals with.  It’s important to people like me, at least.  And that’s a pledge to respect the Constitution, and the limits it places on the exercise of power by a President.  Obama’s worst sin as President, in the final analysis, is his blatant disregard for the Constitution.  If Trump points that out, he could not only promise to restore Constitutional government, he can ask Clinton if she intends to do the same.  Or does she endorse, and promise a continuation of, Obama’s lawlessness?

A lot of people are afraid of what Trump might do, as President, in a rash moment.  He needs to reassure these people, a lot of whom are Republicans or conservative independents, that he will not act unilaterally, but in consultation with Congress, and in collaboration with Congress, in accordance with the Constitution.  At the same time he is attacking Clinton for applauding, and in the case of illegal immigrants, promising to double down on, Obama’s disregard for the law.

In the NYT Ross Douthat writes about a spirit of political-cultural rebellion that is brewing in this country.  There’s so much crazy P.C. B.S. going on that people are going to vote for Trump as a form of protest.  I think he’s right, but I live in a bubble.  In my world everything looks like it’s going off the rails.  I read Drudge and Lucianne and RealClearPoltics, and so on, and I see lunacy all around.  But if you watch CBS News, or MSNBC, or NPR, you live in a different bubble, and there’s nothing to rebel against, because things are fairly normal, except for Trump.

But, in reality, a lot of very strange things are happening, all over this country, and I think Douthat has nailed it.  People have had their fill, and don’t just want to say “no”, they want to say “Hell, no!”  Ergo, Trump.

I had a very long talk with an old friend in Alaska who is a very shrewd political operator, and I learned a lot about what’s been going on up there for the last fifteen years.  I haven’t really paid too much attention.  Then back in February, at the last minute, I started a little media campaign for Cruz before the Alaska caucuses, and I started looking in to the political developments up there since Babbie and I left in 2001.

Things are not looking good for the Republican, or conservative cause.  In 2014, for the first time in many years, enough Republican State Senators were elected that they were able to organize without going in to coalition with the Bush Democrats.  That is threatened this year, and if Big Labor gets its way, there will be another coalition running the Senate.  The key race is in my old Senate District in South Anchorage.  The incumbent Republican is Cathy Giessel, who looks like an outstanding person and Senator.  AFL-CIO boss Vince Beltrami is running against her as an Independent, and they’re throwing a lot of money at her in attack radio.  The Alaska Legislature, run by Republicans, did not distinguish itself last session, and the liberal media is on a jihad against them.  As an incumbent she may be vulnerable in a throw the bums out year.  I’m calling her tomorrow with an offer to help.  I’ve been thinking about what I could do, and I’ve already come up with something that might work.  Since it involves RP co-founder Brendan, I’m excited about it, and ready to get started.

I had a good talk with my old buddy Robin Taylor of Wrangell, and I’ve found a way to get him involved as well.  There’s a lot of work that needs to be done in Alaska, political work, the kind of thing I’m experienced in.  Since I know many of the people involved personally, it’s more fun.

When Babbie and I left Alaska I did it with a sour taste in my mouth.  I had failed at what I had tried to do.  I wasn’t interested in Alaska politics any more, because I was bitter.  But you can only stay pissed off for so long, and then you’ve got to get over it.

Sort if like Ted Cruz.


You can’t hide your lyin’ eyes

Everybody’s got a B.S. detector, and we’ll all have ours tuned to the highest pitch Monday night.  The way our brains are wired, we take in a lot more information from our eyes than from our ears.  People can see better than they can listen.  And that’s why Trump will win the debate.

Clinton may out talk him or win more debate points.  Carter may have “won” his debate with the Gipper on that score.  But Reagan came across as a bigger man, who was at ease with himself, and had the best interest of the country at heart.  Trump’s no Reagan, to say the least, but all he’s got to do is look like a man who knows what he’s doing, and not fly off the handle, and he’ll win.  Because he’s going against a woman who never learned her husband’s most valuable skill.  Bill can lie through his teeth, with conviction, and sincerity.  It’s a gift, and she doesn’t have it.

Obama’s veto of the 9-11 bill, which allows lawsuits against the Saudis, is one of the few smart and principled things he’s done, and naturally the clowns in Congress want to override his veto.  Shameless political whores, all of them.  Congress, not the Democratic Party, is the most corrupt institution in this country.  Only Article V can overcome them.  At some point, Vice President Pence will get Trump to see this.  And if President Trump were to get behind it, it would cement his place in history.  The first use, by the States, of their Article V power would be a watershed event in our political history.  It would mean nothing less than a return to Constitutionalism, after 100 years of losing it.  And Trump could take credit.

Amy Demboski is an Anchorage Assemblywoman, and has a talk show on a small station in the Matsu Valley, KVNT.  She did a little digging in Alaska Public Office Commission and FEC reports, and she found out that all the thieves who donate to Begich also donate to Murkowski.  Surprise, surprise!  So there was no way Begich was going to run against her in a write in.  The money had all been committed to her.  If you want to listen to her rattle on about it for an hour and a half, here’s the link.

She needs to do more than talk about it on her little talk show.  She needs to spread the word, across the State.  Murkowski’s no more of a Republican conservative than Mark Begich.  They’re two peas in a pod, or, better yet, two sucklings on the same sow.  I’d like to write a country and western song, and call it “Two little pigs, side by side, sucking away for all they’re worth.”

The organizer of this suck fest is a guy named Jim Lottsfeldt, who I gather Anchorage Mayor, and Begich buddy, Ethan Berkowitz has hired as a Municipal lobbyist.  A pure political payoff.  The taxpayers of Anchorage are paying the wages of the most dangerous man in Alaska politics today.  He’s a Murkowski contributor, of course, and she owes him for all the union money she’s got, which is a ton.

This guy’s got the Mayor and Assembly of Anchorage in his pocket, and a United States Senator to boot.  I think he may be tied to Gov. Walker as well, but I’m not sure.  He’s definitely making a move to control the Alaska Legislature.  He doesn’t need a majority of Democrats.  There are enough Republican whores in the State Legislature who will leave their own, majority, caucus, and form a bipartisan coalition with the Democrats.  It’s happened time and again in Alaska, and he’s trying to set it up in this election by electing a union boss named Vince Beltrami to the State Senate.  I’m going to get ahold of whoever he’s running against and help them out.  I know a few things about politics in Alaska.

Rush Limbaugh went off on Murkowski last week.  Demboski posted it in her Face book page, here.  She apparently went on CBS News with Perky Katie Couric and made a complete fool of herself, as you would expect, and Rush saw it, and pounced.  He’s pretty hard on her.  You ought to watch.

The leaves are turning and the days shorten.  Harvest time is coming.  Time to sharpen your scythe.

Don’t worry, be happy.

This election shouldn’t be close.  Both Clinton and Trump should be losing badly, but one of them will win, and I think it’s Trump.  At just the right time, his tone is changing.  I don’t see a lot of him, but he seems to be mellowing a bit, which he must do.  People in this country are royally pissed off, but the Deciders are uncomfortable with a President who’s all pissed off.  The Ones Who Will Decide want to vote for someone, not just against the other guy.  They want to vote for a Happy Warrior, not a man waving a sword.

Trump should be a  happy camper right now.  He’s close to pulling off the greatest political coup in American history.  Nobody’s ever done it before, though plenty have tried, right back to Aaron Burr trying to steal the election from Thomas Jefferson.  Trump might pull it off, and he has every right to take a lot of satisfaction from it.  This ought to put him in a good mood Monday night, and if he comes across as not such a bad guy, after all, he’ll win.  Not much of a challenge, after what he’s been through.

Over at 538.com Aaron Bycoffe has devised The Snake, a very cool way to look at the election.  Bravo, Aaron.  It shows Clinton winning New Hampshire, and the election, with 272 EV’s.  After NH, her next weakest states are Colorado, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin.  I really don’t know much about NH and PA, but these other states should go for Trump, in the end.

Coloradans are cool, and with it, and Clinton is so 20th Century.  Colorado Democrats are Bernie Bros, and can’t stand Clinton.  They’ll vote for Johnson (the tongue poker!) or Stein, and give the State to Trump.  Add in conservative rural Colorado, and he’s home free.

Michigan has a successful Republican Governor, a Republican State Legislature, and four years ago became the 24th state in the union to pass a right to work law.  Don’t tell me it’s a blue state.  It’s purple, and it could easily go to Trump, on hatred of NAFTA alone.  There’s a lot of racial undercurrent in Michigan, and these riots in Charlotte are helping Trump.  Sincere thanks, once more, to the irreplaceable George Soros, and his goons at BLM.  Muchas gracias.

And, in the end, I’ll be surprised if Trump doesn’t win Wisconsin, especially after the Cruz endorsement.  There are a lot of popular Republicans in Wisconsin, like Gov. Scott Walker, and they’ve accomplished a lot for the people of Wisconsin.  All the fights he had with the unions produced tangible benefits for the people of Wisconsin, and they know it.  Expect a Trump swing through Wisconsin, joined by Walker, Ryan and Priebus.  It should win it for him, and with it, the Electoral College, and the Presidency.

It’s outlandish, but true.  Donald Trump will be the 45th President of the United States.  This thought doesn’t give me any particular pleasure, but it does have its bright side.  In Alaska, Trump voters are Miller voters, and this could be the end of the Stevens-Murkowski political machine.

I’ve been thinking about BAAM, and am going to hold off for a while.  Maybe voters in Alaska already know all this stuff about Murkowski, and don’t need to be reminded.  Just more negativity.  So I’m going to look on the bright side, and think about all the wonderful things that will happen in Alaska when the last of this gang of thieves is run out of public office.

I don’t really count Rep. Don Young as one of them, maybe because I like Don personally.  He’s just a goofball school teacher from the interior.  He came to Alaska from northern California to get a teaching job in the Bush.  You can make good money, right out of college, teaching school in these remote Alaska Native villages.  Don went to Fort Yukon, right in the middle of the real Alaska, and married a Native gal, to whom he was devoted for her entire life.  She was a very sweet woman.  They had kids, and a normal family life.  Don was a hard core Republican, and was in the State Legislature when the Republicans needed a sacrificial lamb to offer in the 1972 Congressional race.  Nick Begich was the Democratic incumbent, and this guy was good, a rising star in the national Democratic Party.  Don didn’t have a prayer, but he was a good sport, and was ready to take one for the team.

Begich and Hale Boggs went down in the Chugach two weeks before the election, and everyone knew they were gone.  Begich won easily, but Don managed to squeak out a win in the special election to replace him, and he’s been there ever since.  His wife died recently, and I guess being a Congressman gives him something to do in his grief.

I think this will have to be Don’s last term, and Alaska Republicans need to start thinking about who is going to replace him.