The Morning Jolt

Politics & Policy

On Making a Deal with Democrats

Yesterday, the White House delivered a list of items to Congress, which are what it expects to receive in exchange for preserving DACA and keeping DREAMers in the country.

The White House on Sunday delivered to Congress a long list of hard-line immigration measures that President Trump is demanding in exchange for any deal to protect the young undocumented immigrants known as Dreamers, imperiling a fledgling bipartisan push to reach a legislative solution.

Before agreeing to provide legal status for 800,000 young immigrants brought here illegally as children, Mr. Trump will insist on the construction of a wall across the southern border, the hiring of 10,000 immigration agents, tougher laws for those seeking asylum and denial of federal grants to “sanctuary cities,” officials said.

Trump’s new conditions raise questions — especially in light of the deal the president made with Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer three weeks ago, an unlikely alliance for an unlikely cause (protecting DREAMers and preserving DACA). The Left hailed the deal as a way to ensure 800,000 immigrants remain in the country, but many speculated about what exactly Trump was getting out of it. Some suggested it was a slap in the face of Senate Republicans, others wondered if it was just Trump wanting to get something done. If the White House plays hardball on DACA, he will make many conservatives happy.

The Bubbas vs. Uncle Sam

In a column for NRO, Michael Brendan Dougherty answers the claim that no citizens can be effective in a fight against the government, thus rendering the Second Amendment irrelevant. It’s a claim that crops up during every gun-control debate, but, as Michael argues, it’s not a very good one:

They ask something like this: “Do you really think Bubba in camo gear hiding in the forest is going to take on the U.S. military? The U.S. military has nuclear weapons!”

Who exactly do you think has stymied the U.S. in Afghanistan for 16 years? The Taliban is made up of Afghan Bubbas. The Taliban doesn’t need to defeat nuclear weapons, though they are humiliating a nuclear power for the second time in history. They use a mix of Kalashnikovs and WWII-era bolt-action rifles. Determined insurgencies are really difficult to fight, even if they are only armed with Enfield rifles and you can target them with a TOW missiles system that can spot a cat in the dark from two miles away. In Iraq, expensive tanks were destroyed with simple improvised explosives.

The argument that the U.S. military is stronger than the American people is factually true, but functionally illogical. Sheer military power can fall — and has fallen — to the “bubbas” of history. Defending one’s home and family from tyranny is an undervalued measure of militaristic capacity. In 1922, for example, Britain was one of the strongest, most widespread, and most feared empires. It controlled a quarter of global land and global population. And yet:

In that very year, they were forced to make an effective exit from the main part of their oldest colony, Ireland. Why? Because a determined group of Irish men with guns made the country ungovernable.

So don’t underestimate the bubbas.

A Strange History of the anti-Columbus Day Narrative

Every Columbus Day, social progressives employ the same narrative: Because Christopher Columbus was a racist who enslaved indigenous people, it’s racist to set aside a holiday for him. But the roots of the perennial Columbus bashing stretch far deeper, as Jennifer Braceras points out, to Marxism and white supremacy:

Friedrich Engels, who with Marx authored the Communist Manifesto, lambasted Columbus as the godfather of modern capitalism. According to Engels, Columbus’s westward journeys unleashed the era of “big commerce,” the world market, and the birth of the bourgeoisie. “The discovery of America was connected with the advent of machinery,” he wrote in 1847, “and with that the struggle became necessary which we are conducting today, the struggle of the propertyless against the property owners.”

For Marx and Engels — and, therefore, their supporters — Columbus is synonymous with capitalism. The hatred for him may not be as rooted in anti-racism as those who hate him argue; if anything, it is his lust for profit that created the monster of Columbus, not inherent racism.

White supremacists, too, helped promote anti-Columbus rhetoric:

In the 1920s, the Ku Klux Klan promoted negative characterizations of Columbus in order to vilify Catholics and immigrants, many of whom celebrated Columbus not only as a source of ethnic and religious pridebut also as a symbol of the free and diverse society that resulted from the European presence here. The Klan tried to prevent the erection of monuments to the Great Navigator, burned crosses in opposition to efforts to honor him, and argued that commemorations of his voyage were part of a papal plot. Rather than honor a Catholic explorer from the Mediterranean, Klansmen proposed honoring the Norseman Leif Eriksson as discoverer of the New World and a symbol of white pride.

So, Braceras concludes, it’s with great irony that the party of inclusion adopts a narrative invented to exclude.

ADDENDA: At Florida’s homecoming game against LSU (which they lost), the Florida fans broke into an impromptu rendition of Gainesville native Tom Petty’s “I Won’t Back Down.” It’s quite a sight:


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