by Conrad Black
The presidential election result is now down to five questions.
- Can the president override the Democratic media’s thunderous campaign to terrorize the country over the coronavirus?
- Can the president successfully connect Joe Biden’s campaign to the hooligans, anti-white racists, and urban guerrillas who effectively are being encouraged by the corrupt Democratic mayors of many of the nation’s largest cities?
- Will the economic recovery and the decline in the unemployment generated by the COVID-19 shutdown continue at its recent pace and strengthen the economy as a pro-Trump electoral argument?
- Will the Republicans make adequately clear to the country the authoritarian and Marxist implications of the Biden-Sanders unity document?
- Will special counsel John Durham indict senior members of the Obama Administration over their handling of the spurious allegation of collusion between Donald Trump and the Russian government in the 2016 election and Justice Department violations of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), and how will Biden himself come through it?
Apart from the Durham question, the president has it in his power to produce answers favorable to himself on the other four questions.
Trump’s Coronavirus Record
He has a very defensible record in his handling of COVID-19, was prescient in restricting direct air travel from China and Europe to the United States (which the Democrats opposed), and cooperated even with governors who had been extremely antagonistic prior to the pandemic. He sought and accepted the guidance of leading epidemiologists in taking drastic measures to “flatten the curve,” and he showed evident executive ability in quickly developing world-leading coronavirus testing capacity and supplying essential equipment throughout the country.
Trump has been represented as cavalier about the virus itself—a perception problem that has arisen due to his efficient response and move to reopen the economy more quickly than the Democrats, who had hoped that they could prolong the shutdown until the election in order to blame the president for the resulting economic depression.
The president effectively declared victory and sponsored a back-to-work movement and the Democrats have responded by using their iron-fisted control of the national political media to portray the president as cruel and incompetent, while they espouse a completely fatuous policy of indefinite lockdown, colossal emergency income substitution from the treasury, mass testing and tracing of everyone that has been in recent contact with those who test positive and badgering them to self-quarantine.
It is absurd. The president moved on Tuesday to counter this campaign in his first coronavirus press meeting for many weeks. He was businesslike and effective. What is needed is a full-scale public relations campaign including news film of the president at key distribution sites and medical centers. Excessive staging and histrionics must be avoided, and the reduction in fatality rates, improvement in techniques for protecting the immunity-challenged, and administration of therapeutics should all be emphasized—it being understood that 90 percent of the national political media will go to extraordinary lengths to deny the president credit for anything. At some point, there should be a backlash in the president’s favor to this heavy press bias.
Urban violence, defunding police, and the balance between curbing police mistreatment of African Americans and doing everything reasonably responsible to discourage and punish crime, have now become a great chicken game.
The president has already begun to taint the Democratic Party by identification with notoriously corrupt and incompetent Democratic civic political machines. The Democrats have governed in Chicago for 89 years. Their ethics and competence have been in decline for decades and latterly in freefall, and the present mayor, Lori Lightfoot, is a racist and a seeming idiot. The Jussie Smollett case was a vivid depiction of the venality of the Chicago Democrats; they are so rotten it is a wonder that the roofs are still on the public buildings.
In New York City, the surrealistically inept Mayor Bill de Blasio has squandered almost everything his distinguished predecessors Rudolph Giuliani and Michael Bloomberg accomplished. Eric Garcetti in Los Angeles, Ted Wheeler in Portland, and Jenny Durkan in Seattle are all hopeless and the last two, as well as Chicago’s Lightfoot, effectively have sided with rioters and arsonists against their own police departments.
Parts of Chicago and New York are just 360-degree shooting galleries as the demoralized and defunded police essentially have given up, and murder rates have skyrocketed. The president will have to judge when it is better to exercise his constitutional duty to defend federal government property and ensure the enforcement of the nation’s laws than it is to allow the sanguinary spectacle of the disintegration of municipal government in some of the nations great cities to illuminate the depths of Democratic urban decay and hypocrisy.
The Economy and Unemployment
As the country awaits the president’s timing in these matters, there is no reason to doubt that unemployment will continue to descend quickly.
A huge amount of new demand has been injected into the system by relief measures and people prefer employment to unemployment, a preference further economic assistance measures should encourage.
The Democratic pantomime of posing as the chief enemies of the coronavirus rather than its political beneficiary, and as the authors of emergency job or replacement schemes more remunerative than work itself cannot last much longer.
There is no need until after Labor Day to paint too vividly the implications of the “progressive” unity agreement between presumptive Democratic nominee Biden and Vermont socialist Bernie Sanders. It should be a strong argument in September and October, especially the intended elimination of the oil, gas, and coal industries and their 7 million jobs, the destruction of the southern border wall the president has been building, the reopening of the United States to unlimited illegal entry, the enactment of a substantial part of Senator Elizabeth Warren’s infamous $52 trillion healthcare plan, sharp income tax increases and likely a wealth tax.
Important to note, too, is their intentional strangling of the American ethos of self-advancement through hard work and merit as well as their push for the destruction of independent schools in order to reinforce the monopoly of the strictly Democratic teachers’ unions. The hope of these Democrats is to impose more of the slothful philistinism and the largely anti-American current spirit of American schools and universities. Lazy and unpatriotic Americans tend to look toward Democrats for salvation.
Joe Biden is an implausible candidate; the Democratic Party has disgraced itself by its reliance on pestilence and racist mobs, and its platform consists of exploitation of public COVID-19 hysteria, the creation of lawless urban chaos while blaming it on Trump, a Marxist economic redistribution, and the embrace of unlimited undocumented immigration.
A Democratic Party victory would cripple the free market, strangle the American tradition of earned upward mobility, buy votes with unprecedented cynicism and extravagance, and entrench a regime of socialist wealth redistribution which has never attracted significant public support anywhere in the United States.
Only the dementia of fanatical Trump-haters and the almost airtight political bigotry of the national political media have permitted this levitation to continue as long as it has. It will not make it to Election Day.
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Conrad Black has been one of Canada’s most prominent financiers for 40 years, and was one of the leading newspaper publishers in the world as owner of the British telegraph newspapers, the Fairfax newspapers in Australia, the Jerusalem Post, Chicago Sun-Times and scores of smaller newspapers in the U.S., and most of the daily newspapers in Canada. He is the author of authoritative biographies of Franklin D. Roosevelt and Richard Nixon, one-volume histories of the United States and Canada, and most recently of Donald J. Trump: A President Like No Other. He is a member of the British House of Lords as Lord Black of Crossharbour.