Sunday, August 21, 2016

Is the Media Unfair to Mr. Trump?

So I'm watching this speech by Donald Trump.  John C. Wright has been going on about how the media is carefully and deliberately trying to hide anything about Trump that might appeal to voters, and only present those things which they will find frightening or repugnant.  I figured it behooved me to let the man speak for himself.

He opens with some solid statements that men like Walter Williams and Thomas Sowell have been making for years, to wit, that crime hurts Black communities most, and that riotous protests especially are hardest on the people who are already hurting most.  He points out that the results of Democrat party fiscal and domestic policy has been the opposite of progress.  All well and good, but it's been ridiculously difficult to convince the victims that they are in fact in an abusive relationship with the Democrat Party.

He also wants to reverse NAFTA and some other free trade agreements because one result has been that production of easy to manufacture goods (eg, textiles), has gone overseas, and the Americans who used to do those jobs no longer have them. 

If you only look at the jobs and production that has gone to foreign countries, it's easy to suppose that free trade is a bad thing.  What gets ignored is how free trade helps us be richer by lowering the prices we pay for easy-to-make goods, and makes those desperately poor people who have started making those goods richer, by becoming more productive.  The upshot/counter argument is that ending free trade is our way of saying that poor people in Third World nations don't deserve to have an industrial revolution, or wealth.

And then he makes the second half about how the election is his Personal Struggle against corruption, and attacks on his opposition (for results and policy, as well as for their personal characters).  Admittedly, our system of campaign and election laws is designed (or, as he says, rigged) to make sure that only the Demicans and Republicrats can win elections. 

He calls for an end to the crony capitalism which has made him rich.

Uh huh.

He says he's going to protect every American job.  For each job protected, we've found that eight others wither before they can be created.  He's going to cut taxes for all workers and small businesses.  Good for him.  He says he'll make it very expensive for a company to pull up stakes and go elsewhere.  Bad populism, there.  He plans to reform the regulatory regime to make it more business friendly.  I hope so, but good luck with that.  He continues to take a hard line on immigration.  The idea that we should have immigrants who want to be Americans, who hold American values of justice, hard work, self-reliance, and tolerance dear, appeals to me.  The idea that we ought to tighten immigration otherwise doesn't.  It is absurdly difficult to become an American citizen.  Unless you're already a millionaire, you'd be lucky to make it in even a decade.

He wants educational reform -- school choice, charter schools, merit pay, tenure reform.  Jeb Bush did do some of that at one point in FL.  Perhaps he can be Mr. Trump's Secretary of Education.  He wants more police, more enforcement, and better judges and prosecutors.  He's out to take down cartels and gangs like was attempted with the Mafia in a previous generation.  But at what price for the innocent?  Will he bear in mind Blackstone's Formulation that it is better for many guilty to go free than that one innocent be punished?

In healthcare, he's out to repeal the PPACA, better known as Obamacare.  While not every clause of that law is bad, it's not worth it to try to save what was beneficial.  He intends to improve consumers' ability to choose the healthcare they want.  Well and good.  

He says he'll restore honor and reduce corruption.  That requires giving more teeth to the federal government's equivalent to internal affairs.  Didn't Mr. Obama also promise us the most transparent administration ever?  A particular policy, though:  no speaking fees paid to spouses of high-powered administration officials and bureaucrats.

He finishes with more populism, promising to fight for average American people.  There's a fair bunch of conservative virtue-signaling in his speech.  I find myself agreeing more and more that conservatism is just the liberalism of the previous two generations.

So far, I'd say the media probably aren't trying to be fair to him.  There are a few more recent speeches posted by the same Youtube account I can watch to see.  And I probably ought to revisit Mr. Trump's campaign site to see what his particular policy recommendations are.