I used to be one of those obnoxious “white liberal” types, asking my fellow blue collar whites – Why do you vote against your own best interests? I was even tempted to call it “racism”.
When it came to Trump v. Clinton, though, that just didn’t make sense anymore. Here was Trump proposing what some of the better Democrats have been pushing for decades, protection of American jobs; and here was the Democratic Party nominating a would be outsourcer-in-chief. When my fellow “white liberals” picked up the old – Why do you vote against your own best interests? – rhetoric, I was like – ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!
As my regular readers know, I am not part of Trump’s cult of personality. I reluctantly supported him, because it was him or Clinton, and I have been willing to criticize him when I think it’s due. But this week, Trump is earning my praise!
- Trade – Remember when this was the Democrats’ thing? Little by little, Trump is coming through on his trade promises. About a month ago, he implemented 30% tariffs on imported solar panels. I remember in 2009-10ish when the AFL-CIO was denouncing China for their predatory trade practices in relation to solar panels and considering a lawsuit before the WTO. I worried that this would be as far as Trump would go, but now, here he is about to slap a 25% tariff on imported steel, and 10% on aluminum! Thank you Trump! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Trump is getting flak from his own party on this because, as I’ve always hoped, Trump is a bad Republican. On trade, Trump is a much better Democrat than the Clintons, and much of the members of the Democratic Caucuses in Congress.
- Repealing the Individual Mandate – Lest we forget, it was the neoconservative Heritage Foundation that originally came up with the idea to force people to buy health insurance. Obama himself, in 2008, warned that this could put people in a situation where insurance would be so expensive they’d sooner pay the tax penalty. Then Obama implemented the mandate, and many are, as he warned, paying the penalty because insurance is too expensive. Thanks Obama! But if Obama won’t honor his own positions, Trump will do it for him. Trump first tried to repeal the individual mandate as part of a larger health care reform. Upon failing to do that, rather than giving up, he worked a repeal of the mandate into his tax reform. Starting this year, there will no longer be a tax penalty for not buying health insurance. So while Obama did the bidding of the corporatist Heritage Foundation, Trump turned out to be a better Democrat than Obama on healthcare.
- Cautious foreign policy* – Remember when the Republicans were the warmongers? Things were simpler then. We hated Bush, the war in Iraq was a yuge mistake, and Obama would bring us change we could believe in. Then Obama made the mistake of appointing Clinton as Sec. of State, and she talked him into Libya, the biggest foreign policy disaster of his entire presidency. Thank goodness Obama didn’t go all in on Syria! While Trump isn’t perfect on this, so far he’s proven to be more cautious in practice than Obama, Bush, or either of the Clintons. While we are continuing to attack ISIS targets in Syria, we’ve mostly avoided conflict with the Syrian government, we’ve backed the Iraqi government just enough to push ISIS out, and there doesn’t seem to be any quagmires on the horizon. Meanwhile the “Democrats” are red baiting on Russia and beating the war drums themselves towards the Assad regime. It seems on foreign policy, Trump is a better Democrat than any Democratic President since Jimmy Carter, and better than most of the Democrats in Congress.
- Guns – This one is still uncertain, but following Trump’s listening session with the families and friends of victims of the recent shootings, Trump is open to some sensible gun safety regulations. He’s proposed expanding background checks, raising the age to 21 to purchase semi-automatics, and removing firearms from the hands of people with mental illnesses that could be at risk. We don’t know how much of this Trump will follow through with yet, but it is certainly noteworthy that once again, populist Trump is clashing with the real Republicans (and I don’t mean that as a complement to them) in order to do what’s best for the American people.
I’m not joining the cult of Trump or anything. I reluctantly supported him in 2016, and I just may again in 2020, depending on whom the Democrats nominate. I still have plenty of grievances with Trump. He is deregulating the financial sector like a Clinton and he’s completely blind to the realities of institutional racism in our criminal justice system. But as a blue collar Democrat, disgusted at the party that ignores our concerns to maintain its unholy alliance of Political Correctness and Neoliberal Corporatism; I’m looking at Trump and thinking –
I voted for some of my own best interests, and I just might do it again.
Defiant Trump Battles Globalists Like No President Before Him (by DC Whispers)