#2020election

Amateurs vs Professionals

The Trump victory of 2016 was an anomaly but if the last 4 years proved anything, no matter how depraved or sinister the actions (eg impeachment, sordid SCOTUS confirmations, ripping up SOTU speeches, bailing out felons etc) made by the Democrats were, the professional political class should never be underestimated. This election proved it.

One big thing Trump did for America is pull those dormant voters out of the woodwork. Record turnout. Alas, he looks set to lose to Biden. We were wrong. We thought law and order, patriotism and lived experience via a stronger economy were the hotbed issues.

While official declarations have yet to be made, we don’t believe the law courts and legal actions will make much of a difference. It will only make Trump look like a sore loser, which is one narrative the media might lay claim to being close to the mark.

Do rallies matter? Yes and no. MAGA rallies had lots of energy which in part pulled another 5 million votes for Trump. Biden rallies, as infrequent and apathetic as they looked, couldn’t be the contributing factor to another 6-7 million at this point.

Do polls matter? Clearly not. They have been so far out of the ballpark that the team has had to relocate to another suburb. 2016, Brexit and especially this election have proven yet again how useless polls are. We are no better.

We’ve never hid we don’t much like the policies of Biden/Harris as the people of many who have experienced have had for theirs. Yet the eagerness to get rid of Trump was a risk the majority were willing to make.

Unfortunately, Trump’s character was part of the problem. He was an uncouth outsider. Who spoke his mind. Who often laid minefields on Twitter, some which blew up in his face. Yet, to 71 million people, it was a bridge too far. A complicit mainstream and social media only amplified and distorted reality. In this day and age, perception is reality.

With Trump likely to lose, a probable Republican held Senate will mean much of Biden’s policies will be hard to enact. So back to gridlock and partisan gamesmanship. At the very least, the Senate was the electorates’ insurance policy to prevent a full buffet of socialist policies.

Having said that, Trump’s record pre-COVID had much going for it. Record low unemployment for minorities, faster growth, restored manufacturing capability, energy independence, peace deals, no wars, who got NATO members to commit to their own self mandated targets, ditching WHO and the Paris Accord and a strong front to China. COVID was his low point.

Unfortunately, it wasn’t enough to convince voters. They have chosen a dottery but seasoned career politician with a checkered history over an amateur who probably didn’t heed the advice of his party when he needed it most. His run was too late.

How do the GOP regroup? It could well be Americans want Trump-style policies in the White House, just without the Trump noise, bluster and theatrics. We must not forget that 5 million more deplorables still ended up backing him over the 2016 result. Who will be on the 2024 ticket? Nikki Haley? It is our bet but what do we know?

Like we always say, how Americans feel about America is a matter for them!

Open Letter to America from Australia

Dear America,

As one of your closest allies, we cherish our long term relationship. Long may it prevail. We have spilt blood together in the defence of democracy. Australia has always been the first country to sign up to support the US on the battlefield to protect freedom and liberty.

For a bit of perspective, we thought we’d subject what is going on over there to what Aussies call a “pub test.” It is a figure of speech which depicts bar patrons decide what passes as truth or fiction over a beer. After all, a drunk man speaks a sober man’s mind.

From the offset we want to declare we have absolutely no say in how any of you choose to vote. Nor do we want to have a say. Your future should be in your hands, not ours. Although we are struck by how many liberals from other nations demand you vote according to their wishes, not yours.

We hope that November 3rd can deliver a free and fair election where democracy is the only winner. We have our doubts here.

Sometimes a voice who has no say in the outcome can provide perspective. We have no skin in the game. We just hope to provide our view of things.

In Australia, we also suffer the daily musings of a left leaning mainstream media obsessed with clickbait over facts. Nothing as bad as what you have over there but the ideology behind it is the same. Steeped in identity politics and pushing woke causes.

Our journalists, like yours, believe that Twitter is an accurate representation of the majority. Nothing could be further from the truth. We often write that journalistic integrity will only return when the media loves Americans more than they hate Trump. Ours too. What used to be a profession that thrived on facts, now focuses on activism. How many obituaries of slain terrorists read like they were scholars and selfless philanthropists of the highest order?

Watching the VP debate this week, we heard Senator Kamala Harris make the absurd assertion that foreign leaders think more highly of Chinese President Xi Jinping than President Donald Trump. Really?

What many of you may have missed several months ago was that soon after our Prime Minister Scott Morrison proposed an independent investigation into China’s mishandling of COVID-19 outbreak, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) retaliated with tariffs and one senior bureaucrat even went as far as to say Australia waschewing gum stuck to China’s shoe.

Aussies are stoic. To us that was a spit in the face. That annoyed us. We are sure it would rile Americans too. We maybe a small nation but we aren’t a bunch of pushovers.

Unfortunately, up to that date, our political class had long kowtowed to China because of the relatively huge size of the trading relationship with Australia. Expediency was put ahead of principle.

Since coronavirus, many Aussies, including our law makers, have come around to the same philosophy of Trump. All bets are off when it comes to China now. We’ve had enough. We don’t trust the CCP. No one wants to be insulted without reason.

Look, we understand President Trump has an unorthodox style to say the least. He can be petulant at times. He is prone to exaggeration and has a glass jaw. But he gets things done which is ultimately the main aim of his role, no?

Trump must be the only politician in living memory to be condemned for actually keeping his promises.

You don’t have to like Trump. After all who looks to their politicians for moral or spiritual guidance? Yet he is mercilessly attacked every single day by the media which often finds itself peddling false narratives. It seldom apologizes but surely American citizens must be growing tired of story after story about how the orange man is bad.

To us he is a breath of fresh air. No massaged or nuanced comments. Full blunt force. He doesn’t care who he offends. He only looks forward. We totally get that he ruffles feathers. Yet after decades of failed administrations, isn’t he a monster of their own creation? Didn’t they give birth to him? Had they executed on behalf of the American people, Donald Trump would never seen the light of day in the Oval Office.

We post a legitimate question. Can you honestly say that the Left side of politics in America has made a sound argument to the voting public as to why it considers itself the sensible, credible and morally superior alternative via its actions?

The Russia hoax – which now looks like a hit job which goes all the way to the top of the Obama administration – has revealed the sinister side of the establishment.

If this were Australia, no matter which party affiliation one supported, few if any would blindly accept such blatant collusion courtesy of taxpayer funded agencies seeking to pervert the course of democracy. We would demand those responsible be brought to justice and punish the party that indulged in the duplicitous behaviour.

You can be absolutely sure if Biden prevails, #Obamagate will be dead and buried forever. That is the sincere hope for the guilty parties. Who doesn’t delete their phone records by entering their password incorrectly? Who doesn’t take out indemnity insurance if they are following the letter of the law? Is it any wonder Obama is campaigning so hard for a man he took forever to endorse?!

Let’s not forget that Barack Obama even took to using John Lewis’ funeral as an opportunity to make a campaign speech during his eulogy. Crass. Michelle Obama has hardly graced herself talking about her “low grade depression” from her $15m Martha’s Vineyard mansion.

Even if you hate Trump, having him serve four more years to bring corrupt officials in public agencies to heel is the cheapest insurance policy Americans can pay. Failure to do so will mean that you openly authorize federal agencies to defraud you at will to remain in power. Jim Comey and friends never thought they needed to worry about their actions until Hillary Clinton lost 2016. His recent testimony was unbelievable.

We watched the Kavanaugh Senate confirmation circus in disgust. An accomplished man was besmirched in much the same fashion of Clarence Thomas in the 1990s. It was a farce.

The impeachment clown show led by Nancy Pelosi, who grinned her way through the ‘sombre occasion’, was a national embarrassment. Member of Congress, Rep Rashida Tlaib, promised to “impeach the mother f*cker!” What a disgrace to the office. She smiled on her way to cast her vote as if it was some sort of big joke. Recall the embarrassing moment where Adam Schiff chased after Jerry Nadler who stormed the podium to make his own closing remarks. Officials behaving like unruly teenagers.

Perhaps the biggest revelation to come from COVID-19 is not so much the virus but the overt display of power drunk Democrat mayors and governors. They have been borderline despotic and utterly hypocritical. These politicians live by the creed “rules for thee, but not for me!

Most recently, Nancy Pelosi got caught unmasked in a hair salon. Instead of accepting the double standard, she claimed she was set up and sought to legally ruin the business. True colours. Pelosi also showed how out of touch she is by revealing her $20,000 freezer full of boutique ice cream during lockdown when her district is in such squalor.

Who could forget Oregon Gov Kate Brown ordering child protective services on a hair salon owner who wanted to feed her family? What was the connection?

Or LA Mayor Eric Garcetti threatening to cut off the utilities of businesses defying lockdown. How pleased we were to see Californians let off July 4th fireworks in defiance of the order not to.

Or Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan calling CHAZ a “summer of love” until it affected her personally. How we laughed at these protestors demanding supplies from the functional democracy they sought to overthrow.

Perhaps the most disgraceful episode of COVID-19 was the vile reaction from the left wishing death on Trump. Argue all you want about his handling of the pandemic but the Left’s derangement and unsuitability has been on full display. Do people that wish death on others show all the hallmark qualities of leaders capable of uniting a nation?

Never mind the actions of NY Governor Cuomo stuffing nursing homes with infected patients or then NYC Health Commissioner Oxiris Barbot cheerleading identity politics and encouraging people to reject Trump’s xenophobia instead of falling back on her own medical expertise. Orange man bad.

Then came the BLM protests.

The George Floyd incident united a nation. The majority of the public were well on side in fighting for justice and equality right up to the point where they ended up being attacked by the mob in restaurants, neighbourhoods, cars or even protecting their homes.

Peaceful protests gave way to looting, arson, carjackings, assault, shootings and violence. Statues were pulled down. Public and private property destroyed and defaced. Were Nancy Pelosi’s “people will do what they do” comments acceptable? Was talking 100 days after the violence started to condemn it when the polls started to swing sincere? Of course not.

How we felt sorry for struggling businesses under the jackboot of draconian lockdowns having to suffer a further kick to the guts, despite being innocent bystanders. The damage will be lasting. Sure BLM leaders might scream that insurance will pay for the looting now but they overlook the reality that premium hikes will all but guarantee they can’t reopen.

Cities that have been run by Democrats for half a century or more ordered their police to stand down. Is it any wonder that wrapping law enforcement in red tape has dire consequences? The fools sitting on the Minneapolis City Council gave us front row seats to witness how crime flourishes when liberal policies are applied. Who knew they’d be forced to reexamine their own self-inflicted wound?

Then liberals want to tell you that Senator Kamala Harris is a credible candidate. She openly sponsored and supported the MFF which has bailed out felons charged with rape, battery and sexually assaulting an 8-yo child. She even praised career felon Jacob Blake and his family, including his anti-Semitic father. That’s right, criminals are now the innocent victims in the minds of Democrats. It is your fault they stole your wallet.

Even worse this has led to a string of activist DAs across America who want to prosecute innocent parties before evidence is even heard. Think of the sinister behaviour of Fulton County DA Paul Howard who is covering up his own unethical behavior by framing cops who acted in the scope of the law he outlined during the arrest of Rayshard Brooks. Never mind that he was drunk, resisting arrest and fired a taser at the police because he knew he was going straight back to prison. No wonder the police unions are supporting Trump.

Think of Jake Gardner who was acquitted of murder in an act of self defence. Soon after an activist DA folded to mob pressure and prosecuted him with manslaughter, Gardner committed suicide.

Then the public was subjected to woke displays by the sporting codes. The NFL, NBA, MLB and others all joined in ramming politics down the throats of fans who had just paid hard earned money to distract themselves from the grind of life. How surprising that the NBA has just realised that lecturing fans is a bad idea and will remove overt displays in the locker room?

Oh to be lectured by Colin Kapernick who openly celebrated July 4th under Obama but lambasted it as a glorification of white supremacy this year. And Disney is going to give this serial victim a contract to produce a docuseries. Don’t even get us started o the hypocrisy of Alyssa Milano.

We don’t pretend that racism doesn’t exist. However when people like Jussie Smollett, Jonathan Lopez and Sabrina Belcher stage hate crime hoaxes we feel that the fight for equality is closer than it has been for decades of people are forced to conjure it. Hate crimes are a fraction of what they were 30 years ago.

Just look at Congresswoman Ilhan Omar who has pledged to dismantle the system. You know, the very system that rescued her from a Kenyan refugee camp and delivered her to the highest levels of government office. Hardly held back by systemic racism, wouldn’t you say?

When Joe Biden says “#YouAintBlack“, “poor kids are just as smart as white kids“, described blacks as “superpredators” in the 1994 crime bill, told Hispanics that their community is far more diverse than blacks or letting you know he is surviving lockdown because a black woman is restacking the grocery shelves, who is the racist? Trump has denounced white supremacy countless times. Listen for yourself.

We could go on and on with countless more examples including Nancy Pelosi’s recent wish to invoke the 25th Amendment. These people will stop at absolutely nothing to gain power. They care not one jot for you. Don’t forget that Nancy Pelosi felt so deeply for the loss of George Floyd that she called him George Kirby. Senator Chuck Schumer got it wrong too and guess what, YouTube has removed the video!

Yet another issue where Trump is 100% correct. Do you want some biased tech giant in control of what it deems you can consume? If these open platforms are taking on editorial decisions on what you are allowed to see, they should lose sanctuary status from prosecution. Surely you should have 100% control of what you view, read or hear without some apparatchik arbitrarily deciding for you.

As the debates have revealed, Joe Biden is a Trojan horse for a radically left agenda.

Your taxes will be raised, the Supreme Court will be packed and the GND is a formality. The Obamagate investigation will be buried and you can be assured the Democrats will embark on a 4-yr revenge fest based on their own.

We aren’t saying Trump is perfect. Far from it. Yet he hasn’t started a war, he’s got NATO to reach into their wallets, signed historic peace deals people like John Kerry said would never happen. He achieved record low unemployment rates for blacks, Hispanics and women. He is about to get pharma prices slashed 90% and is the only candidate that will hold China to account.

This is your country at stake. Ultimately we think that ‘lived experience’ will prevail. We think that Americans want their livelihoods back. They want the streets to be safe. They want honest cops. But they want honest politicians even moreso. They want prosperity. They want to have pride. They don’t want to be made to feel guilty for crimes they didn’t commit to people that didn’t suffer.

Say what you like about Trump, but from 10,000 miles away, none of you should expect a NY property developer to be the cleanest shirt. However the last four years of Democrat derangement have shown they are absolutely unfit to lead. Double standards, hoaxes and scandals backed by a hysteric cheerleading mainstream media.

Like Aussies, we know deep down Americans are a parochial and patriotic bunch. You have so much to be proud of and the last thing you need is to be lectured to by power mad career politicians with so little to show for other than lining their own pockets.

Do you want to die standing on your feet, or live on your knees. Because that is what is on the ballot.

God Bless America.

Regards,

FNF Media

Who knew? More mail-in ballot malarkey

Detroit election officials have revealed that 72% of absentee ballot precincts recorded totals didn’t match the actual number of votes.

Wayne County, Michigan’s largest county, is calling for an official investigation.

Detroit also had problems with precinct count mismatches in the 2016 presidential election. Election officials couldn’t reconcile vote totals for 59% of precincts.

What could possibly go wrong on November 3rd?

25% of Mail-in Ballots disqualified in Brooklyn

Nothing to see here?!

According to the NY Post,

“A staggering 25% of mail-in ballots cast in Brooklyn for June’s primary elections were declared invalid, it was revealed on Tuesday, as Mayor Bill de Blasio called on the Board of Elections to shape up by November.

More than 120,000 absentee ballots were filed in Kings County for the June 23 primary but about 30,000 were initially disqualified — and it wasn’t the fault of the voters, according to Rodneyse Bichotte, head of the Brooklyn Democratic Party.

Bichotte — also a state assemblywoman whose district includes Flatbush, Ditmas Park and Midwood — said the disqualifying issues included a lack of postmark or late arrival.

The BOE was still untangling the mess six weeks after the primaries and was unable to provide hard citywide figures on Tuesday.”

It wasn’t that long ago when 19% of ballots in the Paterson New Jersey election were disqualified following accusations of ballot theft, voter fraud and intimidation. That occurred soon after it was reported that up to 700 Republican voters in one New Jersey township received ballots listing only Democrat candidates in the mail.

Any wonder Nancy Pelosi is so insistent on there being mass mail-in voting.

We wrote about the outcomes from the Carter-Baker Commission which highlighted that mail-in ballots posed the biggest risk for voter fraud.

Forget what Trump says. Just pay attention to the restless natives

Investor: Peasants Will Be Out With Pitchforks if We Don't Start ...

Unless Joe Biden runs with Michelle Obama as his VP, we still think Trump gets reelected in an electoral college and popular landslide. Yes, we can hear many laughing out loud. We are used to it as we were when we said he would win back in 2015. For all of the same reasons, only amplified. People are tired of the status quo.

Up until the time of the State of the Union speech in February this year, it felt like his second coronation was a formality. Nancy Pelosi knew it when she tore up his speech. Has coronavirus really changed all that?

The prevailing sentiment perpetuated by the mainstream media is that Trump’s catastrophic bungling of coronavirus will kill off any chance he has of winning 2020. To think that Joe Biden is the mouth-watering alternative despite having served under a president whose policies were repudiated in 2016 by the electoral college.

FNF Media thinks that Americans are pragmatic people when push comes to shove and that American exceptionalism is a good thing. They want the dream. They don’t live to be stuck in poverty assessed welfare. Sure, we non-citizens can scoff at their right to bear arms or hosting World Series which exclude other nations but ultimately we don’t get a say. That is a matter for them. If they don’t like it, it is up to them to change their government to fix things. Trump would never have been elected were it not for decades of failed administrations who didn’t deliver that gave birth to him.

Despite all of Trump’s often ridiculous bluster during the coronavirus outbreak, none of it was out of character for the last 3.5 years. The mainstream media has beamed more deranged coverage than ever. People have become numb to the constant drone that they hate him, especially when he trolls them with their own hypocrisy. Let’s be clear, were the likes of CNN truly resonating with the masses, the ratings would reflect people attuned with the rhetoric. This is simply not happening. In fact, the opposite.

Sadly during this crisis, Americans have seen the utterly shameless exploitation of their livelihoods by the ugliest partisan politics seen during any crisis of this scale. They see straight through the pork barrelling. Do liberal-leaning citizens honestly believe that gender diversity on boards and airline emissions regulations are ‘must have’ pieces of legislation in order to pass a $2.2 trillion rescue package designed to protect them? Do they believe a $250 billion supplemented boost to small businesses to support the income of workers should be held back until more identity politics driven data collection is fast-tracked? When people see Nancy Pelosi parading her $24,000 refrigerators filled with $13 a pint ice cream punnets on late-night TV they aren’t amused. 

Is it any wonder so many more Americans are taking to the streets to protests the lockdowns imposed by the states’ governors? As we pointed out in the COVID19 data, those infected and those who tragically met their fate from this deadly virus are relatively minuscule. More and more Americans are seeing this. Very few of us know anyone who has caught it outside of a few celebrities and the UK PM. This is why social distancing is fraying nerves in American households. They can’t easily quantify what is going on using their own experiences.

If anything, these protests point out that Americans are still happy to play the risk/reward ratio if their economic security can be maintained. America hasn’t fluked being 25% of the global economy on 5% of the world’s population for nothing. They would chance contracting coronavirus if that meant being able to feed their families.

Which brings us to China. Trump’s political and media enemies may have cuddled up to China since he took office, but the shambolic WHO response to this crisis and the misinformation emanating from the communist propaganda apparatus will rile 22 million who are on the unemployment queue. More and more Americans can see through an Ethiopian Marxist WHO chief appointed by a Portuguese socialist both serving the communist dictatorship with a president for life.

This activity is red meat to Trump’s base and he knows it. He doesn’t need to say anything. It is becoming self-evident.

Suspending funding for WHO was the right thing to do. WHO is a failing bureaucracy in desperate need of reform. What is the point of funding a body that is supposed to have independence enshrined in its charter when in reality it runs strict political agendas geared to the whims of its ideological brothers in Beijing?

How many leaders of other countries are throwing up two fingers at China in the face of all the revelations about when they knew and how they covered it up? Macron? Merkel? Trudeau? Crickets.

Trump is almost alone in publicly smashing China’s complicity in all of this. Governments around the world may be staying mute over China’s deceit but we can be assured this is not lost on the peons. They have had enough of staying at home. They are sick of facing oppressive sanctions imposed by those they voted in.

The media can sell this as xenophobia or any other form of identity politics but the fact is Trump’s 2016 campaign warned of China. He spoke of bringing jobs back. He spoke of being screwed over on trade with China. He was right.

We all know many Americans are hurting. They want prosperity returned. While the media conflates his term as merely sorting out his billionaire 1%ers, the reality is he has helped the Bottom 50% by a much larger margin. They will know this lived experience, which in politics will ultimately be the most important factor. Trump’s bluster won’t matter. His record up until coronavirus kicked off will.

The Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis (FRED) reported the net worth of the bottom half of the population was $1,070,183mn at the start of 2017. As of the third quarter of 2019, it was 1,668,034mn. That’s an increase of 55.86%. The Top 1%, had $29,955,829mn. In 3Q 2019, it was $34,533,370mn, or 15.3%. Under Obama, net worth for the Bottom 50% declined from $1.7 trillion in 1Q 2009 to $1.1 trillion, down 35% over his two terms. Democrats should be outraged that the ultra-wealthy did much better under Obama with a 100% gain in net worth under his term vs the paltry 15.3% so far under Trump.  Source: FRED Top 1% and Bottom 50%.

This might explain why the “forgotten” wanted large scale change and will continue to support those who can facilitate it.

All coronavirus has done is exposed the despicable bile of partisan politics. Witnessing a concerted effort to remove Trump in the midst of an untold financial tsunami will not sit well with people. This isn’t about partisanship. They will want someone that can deliver. If it comes with all of Trump’s vulgarity then so be it. After all, a man that can win an election with ‘p*ssy grabbing’ on the ticket can produce miracles.

So there is Trump’s election strategy in a nutshell – “China, China, China!”

Good luck with Joe Biden telling Americans that President Xi has America’s best interests at heart! How can he say this when his former boss was not greeted with red carpet, a mobile stairway or a welcoming committee of important dignitaries on his final state visit to China?

Forget the polls. Forget the media spin. Coronavirus has hit the raw nerve of patriotism and the one person who is accused of constantly lying will be the only one speaking the truth. Americans are at a crisis point. Best not question their loyalty to Old Glory.

We may hate the idea of a new cold war but that is up to Americans to decide. We are at their mercy. Ultimately it is best to have a strong America given China’s soft power expansion.

The folly of endorsements

The last time we found Elizabeth ‘Fauxcahontas’ Warren talking of endorsements it was a group of hateful feminists – 3,400 of them to be precise – who threw their weight behind her.

Supposedly the backbone of democracy she spoke of came from the likes of the BlackWomxnFor (BWF) movement, which states on its own website,

“THE SPACES CREATED BY BLACK WOMXN FOR ARE INTENTIONALLY INCLUSIVE OF ALL BLACK FOLKS THAT DO NOT CLAIM MALE IDENTITY.

THIS INCLUDES BLACK TRANS & CIS WOMEN, GENDER NON-CONFORMING FOLKS AND OTHERS.”

Yes, inclusivity must have exclusion at its heart. Liberal logic at its finest.

Now that Biden has Warren’s support, will this old white male who challenges voters to tests of toxic masculinity get the support of those that supported her?

Will Biden be awaiting Julian Castro’s endorsement? Recall the senator stated he wanted to guarantee that trans females would have full access to abortions during the Democratic Party primaries. When Castro dropped out he threw his weight behind Warren even though his supporters backed Biden. So much for knowing the mood of one’s following.

At last, Obama has finally got around to backing his former VP. How eerily silent the former president was when allegations about his creepy nature around pre-pubescent girls came to light.  Despite Obama awarding  Biden with a Presidential Medal of Freedom and saying he was the best VP in American history, not one word had parsed his lips in terms of an endorsement.

In what CNN hopes is fake news, the cable network noted that more than 200 former staffers that worked in former President Barack Obama’s campaigns and administration signed a letter endorsing Elizabeth Warren’s 2020 presidential run.

Did Obama realise that Biden said at the time of his staffer’s progressive support for Warren, “I don’t need an Obama endorsement.

Biden said he wanted to put Obama on the SCOTUS bench as an election campaign manifesto, if he’d take it.

Obama’s administration is often credited with “zero scandals” recall his DoJ was so crooked a Texas District Court judge, Andrew S. Hanen, ordered its lawyers to undergo 5 years of compulsory ethics training in 2016 for deliberately misleading the court over illegal immigration. He also ordered AG Loretta Lynch to file a comprehensive plan within 60 days on how to “prevent this unethical conduct from ever happening again.”

Will Biden ask for Obama’s campaign team for help? They said at the time,

We are a group that really uniquely knows that electability is self-determining and that oftentimes it’s the people with the boldest vision and the most unlikely candidacies early on who can really shift the field…Sen. Warren really has the zest and the grit and the gumption and the audacity that we loved that President Obama really embodied.

Just how much value can one put in an endorsement? Because the endorsers of his endorser originally endorsed someone else.

Our view is this election won’t be based solely on the characters per se. There is so much material on both candidates when it comes to gaffes. Lived experience is what is at play here. Telling people they’ve never had it so good when they are struggling doesn’t win votes, which is why Trump won in 2016. This was our thinking at that time. Forget massaged data emanating from the White House marketing departments. It only pushes people the other way. 

The 2020 election will be a test of Americans resolve to be able to live out the American dream. If they vote in Biden and go back to the very administrations of the past that failed to deliver for decades we’ll know they’ve thrown in the towel. If the Bottom 50% believe that the positive change in fortunes under Trump – which we pointed out in the SOTU – before COVID19 shut down the economy, he is still very much in the race. The media will undoubtedly try and play the race card against Trump’s anti-China rhetoric, but never come between an American and patriotism in a crisis.

The one fatal flaw experts forget when seeking to mimic #Abenomics style endurance

Pain

Over three decades ago, the Japanese introduced a TV programme titled, ‘Za Gaman‘ which stood for ‘endurance‘. It gathered a whole bunch of male university students who were challenged with barbaric events which tested their ability to endure pain because the producer thought these kids were too soft and self-entitled. Games included being chained to a truck and dragged along a gravel road with only one’s bare buttocks. Another was to be suspended upside down in an Egyptian desert where men with magnifying glasses trained the sun’s beam on their nipples while burning hot sand was tossed on them. The winner was the one who could last the longest.

Since the Japanese bubble collapsed in the early 1990s, a plethora of think tanks and central banks have run scenario analyses on how to avoid the pitfalls of a protracted period of deflation and low growth that plagued Japan’s lost decades. They think they could do far better. We disagree.

There is one absolutely fatal flaw with all arguments made by the West. The Japanese are conditioned in shared suffering. Of course, it comes with a large slice of reluctance but when presented with the alternatives the government knew ‘gaman’ would be accepted by the nation. It was right.

We like to think of Japan, not as capitalism with warts but socialism with beauty spots. Having lived there for twenty years we have to commend such commitment to social adhesion. It is a large part of the fabric of Japanese culture which is steeped in mutual respect. If the West had one lesson to learn from Japan it would be this. Unfortunately, greed, individualism and self-entitlement will be our Achilles’ heels.

It is worth noting that even Japan has its limits. At a grassroots level, we are witnessing the accelerated fraying of that social kimono. Here are 10 facts taken from our ‘Crime in Japan‘ series – ‘Geriatric Jailbirds‘, ‘Breakup of the Nuclear Family‘ and the ‘Fraud, Drugs, Murders, Yakuza and the Police‘ which point to that old adage that ‘all is not what it seems!

  1. Those aged over 65yo comprise 40% of all shoplifting in Japan and represent the highest cohort in Japanese prisons.
  2. 40% of the elderly in prison have committed the same crime 6x or more. They are breaking into prison to get adequate shelter, food and healthcare.
  3. Such has been the influx in elderly felons that the Ministry of Justice has expanded prison capacity 50% and directed more healthcare resources to cope with the surge in ageing inmates.
  4. To make way for more elderly inmates more yakuza gangsters have been released early.
  5. 25% of all weddings in Japan are shotgun.
  6. Child abuse cases in Japan have skyrocketed 25x in the last 20 years.
  7. Single-parent households comprise 25% of the total up from 15% in 1990.
  8. Domestic violence claims have quadrupled since 2005. The police have had to introduce a new category of DV that is for divorced couples living under the same roof (due to economic circumstances).
  9. The tenet of lifetime employment is breaking down leading to a trebling of labour disputes being recorded as bullying or harassment.
  10. In 2007, the government changed the law entitling wives to up to half of their husband’s pension leading to a surge in divorces.

These pressures were occurring well before the introduction of Abenomics – the three arrow strategy of PM Shinzo Abe – 1) aggressive monetary policy, 2) fiscal consolidation and 3) structural reform.

Since 2013, Abenomics seemed to be working. Economic growth picked up nicely and even inflation seemed like it might hit a sustainable trajectory. Luckily, Japan had the benefit of a debt-fueled global economy to tow it along. This is something the West and Japan will not have the luxury of when the coronavirus economic shutdown ends.

However, Japan’s ageing society is having an impact on the social contract, especially in the regional areas. We wrote a piece in February 2017, titled ‘Make Japan Great Again‘ where we analysed the mass exodus from the regions to the big cities in order to escape the rapidly deteriorating economic prospects in the countryside.

Almost 25 years ago, the Japanese government embarked on a program known as
‘shichosongappei’ (市町村合併)which loosely translates as mergers of cities and towns. The total number of towns halved in that period so local governments could consolidate services, schools and local hospitals. Not dissimilar to a business downsizing during a recession.

While the population growth of some Western economies might look promising versus Japan, we are kidding ourselves to think we can copy and paste what Nippon accomplished when we have relatively little social cohesion. What worked for them won’t necessarily apply with our more mercenary approach to economic systems, financial risk and social values.

Sure, we can embark on a path that racks up huge debts. We can buy up distressed debt and repackage it as investment grade but there is a terminal velocity with this approach.

The Bank of Japan is a canary in the coalmine. It has bought 58% of all ETFs outstanding which makes up 25% of the market. This is unsustainable. The BoJ is now a top 10 shareholder of over half of all listed stocks on the index. At what point will investors be able to adequately price risk when the BoJ sits like a lead balloon on the shareholder registry of Mitsui Bussan or Panasonic?

Will Boeing investors start to question their investment when the US Fed (we think it eventually gets approval to buy stocks) becomes the largest shareholder via the back door? Is the cradle of capitalism prepared to accept quasi state-owned enterprises? Are we to blindly sit back and just accept this fate despite this reduction in liquidity?

This is what 7 years of Abenomics has brought us. The BoJ already has in excess of 100% of GDP in assets on its balance sheet, up from c.20% when the first arrow was fired. We shouldn’t forget that there have been discussions to buy all ¥1,000 trillion of outstanding Japanese Government Bonds (JGBs) and convert them into zero-coupon perpetual bonds with a mild administration fee to legitimise the asset. Will global markets take nicely to erasing 2 years worth of GDP with a printing press?

Who will determine the value of those assets when the BoJ or any other central bank for that matter is both the buyer and seller. If the private sector was caught in this scale of market manipulation they’d be fined billions and the perpetrators would end up serving long jail sentences.

Can we honestly accept continual debt financing of our own budget deficit? Japan has a ¥100 trillion national budget. ¥60 trillion is funded by taxes. The remainder of ¥40 trillion (US$400 billion) is debt-financed every single year. Can we accept the RBA printing off whatever we need every year to close the deficit for decade upon decade?

In a nutshell, we can be assured that central banks and treasuries around the world will be dusting off the old reports of how to escape the malaise we are in. Our view is that they will fail.

What will start off as a promising execution of Modern Monetary Theory (MMT), rational economics will dictate that the gap between the haves and the have nots will grow even wider. Someone will miss out. Governments will act like novice plate spinners with all of the expected consequences.

In our opinion, the world will change in ways most are not prepared for. We think the power of populism has only started. National interests will be all that matters. Political correctness will cease. Identity politics will die. All the average punter will care about is whether they can feed their family. Nothing else will matter. Climate change will be a footnote in history as evidenced by the apparition that was Greta Thunberg who had to tell the world she caught COVID19 even though she was never tested.

Moving forward, our political class will no longer be able to duck and weave. Only those that are prepared to tell it like it is will survive going forward. The constituents won’t settle for anything else. Treat them as mugs and face the consequences, just like we saw with Boris Johnson’s landslide to push through Brexit.

The upcoming 2020 presidential election will shake America to its foundations. Do voters want to go back to the safety of a known quantity that didn’t deliver for decades under previous administrations and elect Biden or still chance Project Molotov Cocktail with Trump?

What we know for sure is that Trump would never have seen the light of day had decades of previous administrations competently managed the economy. COVID19 may ultimately work in Trump’s favour because his record, as we fact-checked at the time of SOTU, was making a considerable difference.

Whatever the result, prepare to gaman!

 

A message from Bernie Sanders’ field officer

We very much doubt Bernie Sanders would endorse what his field officer said. Perhaps his staffer is just disgruntled that Bernie cut his hours

Fauxcahontas throws a gutter ball

Democrat presidential nominee Elizabeth Warren was asked at a town hall meeting at a bowling alley about her claims to be Native American. Here is the video of her reply.

Confirming what everyone already knew, Warren said,

I am not a person of color, I am not a citizen of a tribe, and I have apologized for confusion I’ve caused on tribal citizenship, tribal sovereignty, and for any harm that I’ve caused.

Confusion? Hijacking an identity for the sole purpose of advancing one’s career. Couldn’t be much clearer.

Talk about inauthenticity. To try to pin it on her parents for leading her to believe that identity. Imagine the presidential debates if she wins the nomination. Grab your popcorn.

Impeachment for budding US constitutional experts

Image result for impeach

Salvatore Balbones has written one of the better pieces as goes impeachment to all those budding US constitutional experts in The Spectator today.

In the United States, no president has ever been convicted in an impeachment proceeding, even if he was guilty. In 1998, Bill Clinton almost certainly committed at least two high crimes (perjury and obstruction of justice), and God knows how many misdemeanours, but even he was acquitted. And that was with Republicans in control of the Senate. The idea that Donald Trump would be convicted on vague charges of ‘abuse of power’ by two-thirds of a Senate where his party controls an absolute majority is preposterous. Even Donald Trump isn’t that unpopular.

And then there’s the election. In case you haven’t heard, 2020 is an election year in the United States. Conviction in an impeachment proceeding removes the incumbent from office, but it doesn’t automatically disqualify him from running again. That takes an additional vote. But if Senate Republicans not only convict President Trump but also disqualify him from holding office in the future, who would be the Republican candidate in the 2020 elections? Currently, no one else is (seriously) running. The national Republican party isn’t even holding candidate debates, and some state parties are cancelling primaries and caucuses. It seems very unlikely that the Republicans would let the Democrats walk into the White House unopposed.