Year One of making America great again!
By Mark Alexander
In his 1980 presidential debate with Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan did what he would often do in the years that followed: He talked over the mainstream media cameras and spoke directly to the American people. On this particular occasion, he asked, "Are you better off than you were four years ago?" They were not, of course, and they thus entrusted Reagan with two presidential terms to right our nation's course.
Today, only a leftist suffering from the deep denial associated with Trump Derangement Syndrome refuses to acknowledge how much better off our nation is today than it was just one year ago. Notably, Donald Trump has also found a way to talk over the heads of the Leftmedia propaganda machine — social media. Fortunately, Trump's chief of staff, former Marine Gen. John Kelly, is helping his boss refine his use of that message medium.
In the first week of 2017, I had concerns about what a Trump presidency would look like, but I knew for certain that our nation would be better off on his worst day in office than on Hillary Clinton's best.
Two months earlier, like most other constitutionally conservative defenders of Liberty, I had encouraged fellow Patriots to vote for the Trump ticket — as I did personally, motivated primarily by four lines of reasoning.
First, Hillary Clinton (never an option) would have taken the domestic and foreign policy catastrophes implemented by her predecessor and their statist Democrat Party and driven those stakes further into the heart of Liberty.
Second, one of the deepest stakes would have been Clinton's Supreme Court nominees, which would have further advanced her tyrannical "rule of men" agenda over our Republic's Rule of Law mandate. It is that most fundamental republican principle which all federal politicians and administrators have sworn "to Support and Defend," but which those on the Left violate constantly and contemptuously.
Third, though the ranks of genuine conservatives in the House and Senate have grown substantially, the so-called "establishment Republicans" were still in control. We were ready for a Trump detonation in the middle of that status quo "leadership," to set a course for something other than more of the same.
And last but certainly not least, I have known and followed closely the career and policies advocated by Mike Pence for 20 years. Trump's choice of Pence, versus Clinton's pathetic choice of Sen. Tim Kaine for her ticket, spoke volumes about Trump's leadership potential.
So are we better off than we were a year ago? President Reagan would, I think, be proud of the conservative agenda that Donald Trump has pushed through.
All the leftist denial notwithstanding, here is what the Trump administration's domestic policies have helped create in just 12 months.
Headline unemployment is now at its lowest mark in 17 years, though I note this benchmark with caution as there are many Americans who had to take subsistence jobs during the previous eight years.
Trump's policies are righting our nation's economic course. American businesses have created more than 1.7 million new jobs, including almost 160,000 manufacturing jobs and another 58,000 in mining and logging. Notably, the number of illegal immigrants vying for American jobs and lowering American wages has declined significantly.
GDP topped 3% for the last two quarters of 2017. (In the 32 quarters of Obama's "recovery," only twice did he register a GDP of 3% or better.)
Our economy, re-fueled in large part by enthusiasm for the future, is once again growing. The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index is at a 17-year high, and the National Association of Manufacturers’ Outlook Index is at its highest annual average in its history.
Even The New York Times has had to acknowledge, "A wave of optimism has swept over American business leaders, and it is beginning to translate into the sort of investment in new plants, equipment and factory upgrades that bolsters economic growth, spurs job creation — and may finally raise wages significantly." (One can only imagine the gnashing of teeth that took place prior to publishing that single sentence.)
The prospects of continued growth are being supercharged by the Republican passage of tax reform — $1.5 trillion in tax cuts — almost 60% to families, most of whom will now be able to file their IRS return on a single page.
The tax reform measures also repealed the so-called "Affordable Care Act" individual mandate burden on individuals and families.
Economic growth will be boosted by record cuts in government regulations and new accountability measures. The Trump administration eliminated 22 regulations for each new one enacted. Trump signed 15 Congressional Review Act resolutions into law, more than any other president.
The rogue EPA, which has been weaponized by Democrats to control and micromanage economic development, is being reined in. Trump has unleashed energy development to reduce our nation's dependence on foreign energy sources. And the so-called "Consumer Financial Protection Bureau" has been put on notice.
And on the coattails of the U.S. economic recovery, the global economy grew at a faster rate than it has since 2011. That's American leadership. The Trump administration has worked to close hundreds of billions in deals to sell American products abroad. And in recent months foreign companies have announced $50 billion in new U.S. projects.
While economic strength certainly bolsters Liberty, Trump nomination of more than 70 conservative federal judges, including that of now-Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch for the seat vacated by the revered late Justice Antonin Scalia, has been a critical step to ensuring Liberty for the next generation. Republicans confirmed a record-setting 12 conservative federal circuit judges.
And the year in foreign policy has been favorable, unless you're an adversary of the United States. The most notable advances in U.S. national security interests would certainly include Trump's confrontation of China's nuclear puppet, North Korea and Kim Jong-un.
Just a few short years ago, we heard that "al-Qa'ida is on the run." And when that proved untrue, we heard that "we've contained them." Today, however, we can truthfully report that al-Qa'ida's bloodier successor, the Islamic State, founded in effect by Obama and Clinton, is really on the run, having been largely eradicated from its rat holes in Iraq and areas of Syria. However, so-called "lone wolf" Islamist sympathizers remain a daunting threat to Western Europe and the U.S.
Further, there are emerging democracy movements around the world fueled by the knowledge that they will now have U.S. support. The most notable movement now underway is that challenging the terrorist-sponsoring Islamist theocracy of Iran.
Notably, despite the overwhelmingly anti-Trump media in his first year, versus Obama's overwhelmingly adoring media in his first year, their approval ratings are virtually identical, with both at 46% at the end of their first year.
Leftists have thus far failed to derail Trump's "Make America Great Again" agenda, so in collusion with their Leftmedia public relations outlets, they've created a colossal fake news farce to undermine public support for our duly elected president, most notably their claims of Russian collusion and corruption. However, now that it appears to be Clinton who orchestrated the collusion delusion, the Democrats' next line of attack ahead of this year's midterm elections will most likely be "sexual harassment" claims.
Before the end of this month, I'll be covering in detail the critical issues for maintaining control of the House and Senate this year, starting with the "Trump Effect — Good and Bad," then covering the abject corruption among Obama's deep-state operatives within the Department of Justice and the Demos' Detestable DACA strategy.
But for now, let me just say that I'm grateful for the year just passed for many reasons — and that the future prospects for Liberty are in much better hands than they might have been.
I hope you and your family had a peaceful and joyous Christmas and that many blessings, large and small, come your way throughout this New Year. Know that your Patriot team is all about resolve, not resolutions, as we remain on the wall day in and day out.
Mark Alexander is the executive editor of the Patriot Post