Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Today’s Trump | Lefsetz Letter

You’ve got to be rich.

And it always comes down to who you know.

No one is willing to sacrifice anymore. Latest example? The Nevada Culinary Union. They bargained for a blue chip health care plan. Screw those who have inferior plans, or no plan at all. I’ve got mine, AND SCREW YOU!

How did it come to this? How is it that Americans drive gas-guzzling SUVs, which handle worse than cars, and are less safe than cars, and will kill those not driving SUVs, while the media excoriates electric cars, which even the auto industry admits are coming. Yes, if you follow the car business, you know that Volkswagen has doubled-down on electric vehicles. BMW cut back, and now they’re behind. And Tesla is winning not only because it’s cool, but it has the best technology, the best battery packs, the longest range! But we need to believe in the usual suspects, like GM, Ford and Chrysler, all of which have a long history of crashing after lining their pockets “giving the people what they want.”

It all comes down to marketing.

Which is how Michael Bloomberg went from zero to hero.

Because anybody with something does not want to sacrifice. Doesn’t want to be at risk of losing whatsoever.

And the media, the talking heads, the pundits, the opinion columnists, who are upper middle class if not outright rich, lobby for the status quo themselves. Because it works for them. They don’t want a renegade, they might lose their position.

But Donald Trump won by being a renegade. By talking about how the government does not work and the game is rigged.

The government has issues, but one thing’s for sure, the game is rigged.

Let’s see, all the people Trump pardoned/commuted today… It’s not like they had public defenders, it’s not like they didn’t have the right to appeal, they were convicted, fair and square, there’s a system, based on laws, and if you sacrifice the law…you’ve got chaos.

Which is what we’ve got today.

The automakers don’t want to lower fuel economy standards because they’re fearful of California. Sure, they’d like them to be brought down, but what if a Democrat wins and they’re pushed back up!

No one knows what’s gonna happen.

It is not business as usual.

But one thing is for certain, if you’re not rich, you don’t count, you have no voice.

Because they don’t want to let you have one.

Oh, they’ll let you call in to talk shows, they’ll get you fighting about secondary issues, but they won’t let you challenge the system, which is imperfect but works just fine for them.

You should watch Hasan Minhaj on obesity:

How America Is Causing Global Obesity | Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj

Americans are not fat because they’re lazy, unable to make good choices…no, they’re fat because big food wants them that way. First and foremost by the use of corn syrup, i.e. fructose, as opposed to the more expensive sugar. Got to keep those farmers voting Republican!

And as you will see in the Minhaj show, these big companies are not only fattening Americans, but Mexicans and Samoans… They get the law changed to their advantage, and they blame the consequences on YOU!

That’s today’s America, it’s your fault you’re not rich, it’s your fault you’ve got cancer.

Which brings me to last night’s John Oliver show, wherein he makes the case for Medicare for all:

Medicare for All: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver

Oliver goes through all the negative talking points, blows them away, and if you’re not for Medicare for all after you watch this, you’re greedy or, like members of the Culinary Union, have a blue chip policy.

But there can be no change.

But change happens. The last twenty years have been all about change. Digital disruption. It’s always outsiders with a creaky new way that is cheap and pooh-poohed that ultimately triumphs and kills what came before. Why can’t this happen in politics?


I’ll vote for any Democrat against Trump. But I must say, the DNC and the media are bending over backward to hand it to Michael Bloomberg. Today the polls came out and the stories were all about Bloomberg’s surge, when Sanders surged way ahead of the field.

Selective reporting.

It used to be different. There was the Fairness Doctrine, making sure the limited news outlets presented both sides.

And if you owned a megaphone, a newspaper, TV or radio station, you were powerful.

You’re less powerful today.

Those in power, the elite, hate technology, even though they selectively use it. I listened to NPR tonight wherein they sang the virtues of the independent bookstore, saying the digital book was neutered. But the sycophantic host even admitted he showroomed the Ron Chernow book on Ulysses S. Grant and bought the digital copy, because the physical book was just too heavy.

This is the establishment, they like it how it was, even though it’s no longer this way.

I get it if you’re a member of the Republican elite. The money and perks have always flowed upward. But the Democratic elite? They have contempt for those below them, believe they know better, spread their own disinformation in pursuit of their goals. There can be change, just as long as they don’t lose out.

And you wonder why the rank and file voted for Trump.

So it all comes down to hope. If Bloomberg is elected, we’ll get rid of the orange menace. But will the fundamental problems of this country be addressed? Of course not, because Bloomberg doesn’t even know how the hoi polloi live.

So Blagojevich broke the law. We don’t want our elected officials selling Senate seats. But we live in a country where our President can lean on Ukraine to neuter the campaign of Joe Biden, which he successfully did!

Mitt Romney did the right thing, and he was excoriated by the right, but…they still love him in Utah, because their society is built on the family and helping one another, morality.

Bernard Kerik was caught red-handed, as was Eddie DeBartolo, Jr. Commit a blue collar crime and you’re screwed, there’s a camera everywhere, you’re going up the river. But white collar crime is seen as less bad, these are good people, we don’t want to ruin their lives, like the judge said in the Stanford rape case. SO WHY DID THEY DO THIS?

That’s what you’ve got to ask. These people thought they were invulnerable, they’d been getting away with bending the rules for years, it’s just that this time they got caught. Whereas you’re lucky if you can get probation on the first offense.

So there’s a different legal system for the rich and poor. And unlike in the old days, the rich no longer worry about the optics. Trump doesn’t care how it looks, Kerik working with the Donald’s henchman Giuliani, Blagojevich appearing on “The Apprentice,” he just does what he feels like, with a vengeance, vindictively.

Susan Collins told us Trump learned a lesson…yeah, that he can do whatever he wants!

As for those who support him, it’s less about him than the tribe on the other side. They hate Democrats so much, they’ll endorse the behavior of any Republican, just ask the evangelicals.

So if you live online, you see contrary opinions.

But big media has told us it’s all cranks and their opinions don’t count. Meanwhile, Breitbart and the Daily Caller got Trump elected. Who cares about veracity, that demonstrates power.

And although the right decries authoritarianism in China, it refuses to publicize any story it doesn’t agree with, that doesn’t reinforce its position.

So, you can be an outsider, you can have the illusion of power, because you vote.

But for the first time in my life I’m starting to wonder if it matters. If we organize and come up with a contrary candidate, our own opinion, they shut us right down. Bernie Sanders is a socialist who loves Russia and will ruin the economy, after eliminating Democratic coattails.

Meanwhile, Trump is a guy who really loves Putin, and endorses/enables socialism for the rich, with low taxes, the carried interest rule, government handouts, but somehow that’s different.

It isn’t about Bernie Sanders the man, it’s about what he’s saying, telling the truth in a world where that is abhorred. The everyday person got screwed, and the playing field must be leveled, while everybody is taken care of while they get back on their feet.

But those on both the right and left say this can’t be so. Change must be gradual, and you know there can’t be change because the government is gridlocked, and you’re asking the impossible anyway.

Meanwhile, let’s hand the nomination to a billionaire who just recently was a Republican, who changed the law so he could serve a third term as mayor, who made the elites feel safe while his police force threw those less privileged up against the wall.

But that’s overlooked. Even the sexism. Because this is the guy the elites want, because he’ll just be the anti-Trump, who cares if he gets anything done.

And their plan is working. I was with three twentysomethings just now, all were Bernie fans, now they’re behind Bloomberg, the media has convinced them, they’re defeated. Even though it’s their future at risk.

So what we’ve found is despite our numbers, we ain’t got much power. Even if Bernie Sanders wins a primary, he loses. The owners of this country want it this way.

As for Michael Milken… Wasn’t he the first guy to make so much money on Wall Street? Isn’t he evidence of the basic problem? By pardoning him aren’t we endorsing this kind of behavior, especially if you employ your riches that remain for good causes?

It’s depressing. And everybody is telling us we know nothing and should do what they say. And however it plays out, they’re not gonna lose, but we are.

Meanwhile, we’re fighting each other for scraps and most have no idea how the game is really played anyway. Everybody believes they’re gonna be a successful entrepreneur, become a billionaire. Someone else did it, so why can’t they?

Because that other person had wealthy parents who gave them the best education at institutions where you can make relationships that pay dividends down the road. You never had a chance. And today, both parties are doing their best to snuff whatever light, whatever hope remains, out.

And you wonder why there’s a rash of suicides.

[from https://ift.tt/2k9aO1A]

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