FGF OP-ED
A Voice from Fly-Over Country
May 19, 2016

Conservatives, Liberals, and Trump
by Robert L. Hale
fitzgerald griffin foundation

MINOT, ND — Conservatism and liberalism are two ideologies, both vying to destroy the traditional values that have made America great. Together they are succeeding amazingly well.

Democrats have embraced liberalism and socialism. Hillary Clinton has espoused Democratic liberalism, and Bernie Sanders has espoused socialism. Republicans have their own brand of conservatism espoused by the Bushes, Cruz, Kasich, Romney, Rubio, and Ryan.

Trump does not fit into any of these ideologies. I submit this is why there is such hysteria from both parties. Mr. Trump has them baffled, and they are unable to understand why America is listening to him.

 

Rather than espousing an ideology, Trump sees the troubles in America as problems needing actual solutions rather than ideological ones.

   

The reason both sides give for eliminating Mr. Trump from serious consideration for president goes something like this: Trump is hateful, mean, rude, ignorant, disrespects women, has no understanding of statecraft, is unpresidential, does not play by their rules, and is not really a conservative. Hurray!

A recent piece by Mychal S. Massier, an ordained minister who serves as founder and Chairman of the Racial Policy Center, is enlightening. He is a former member of the National Center for Public Policy Research and former National Chairman of the conservative black think tank, Project 21. Mr. Massier brilliantly sums up the fruit of today's liberal and conservative thought.

“Viewing problems from the liberal perspective has resulted in more problems, more entitlement programs, more victims, more government, more political correctness, and more attacks on the working class in all economic strata.”

“Viewing things according to the so-called Republican conservative perspective has brought continued spending; globalism to the detriment of American interests and well-being; denial of what the real problems are; weak, ineffective, milquetoast leadership that amounts to Barney Fife as Deputy Sheriff, appeasement-oriented and afraid of its own shadow.”

 

Rather than looking at problems as problems requiring solutions, liberal and conservative politicians, bureaucrats, and academics seek to impose solutions that ignore fixing anything.

   

Mr. Trump confounds Republicans and Democrats, particularly the Beltway branch of those parties and the elites who run state governments through their established “old boy and girl” networks. Mr. Massier suggests this is because he is neither liberal nor conservative but rather a pragmatist.

Rather than espousing an ideology, Trump sees the troubles in America as problems needing actual solutions rather than ideological ones. His confidence that he can solve problems is seen by ideologues as arrogance. This should surprise no one who has actually accomplished anything in life. The greatest challenge is posed by the know-it-all bureaucrats who get in the way of solutions and problem solvers. They do so behind the cloak of government and take no personal responsibility; they have rarely, if ever, accomplished anything in their lives other than playing political gamesmanship.

Two recent examples illustrate Mr. Massier’s analysis.

First, President Obama, through Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Julian Castro — a life-long politician and self-proclaimed product of affirmative action — announced a settlement agreement with Baltimore County in March. The settlement was the outcome of federal bullying that resulted in the county providing 2,000 Housing Choice Vouchers to help families gain access to “higher opportunity neighborhoods.” In short, the outcome mandated taxpayer-subsidized funding to relocate the poor to upper-income neighborhoods.

This is a typical liberal solution applying liberal ideology. There is a 40-plus year history showing that this type of “charity” and “good intention” not only does not work but actually harms those whom Obama and Castro claim they want to help.

 

Mr. Trump does seem arrogant to these folks because he looks at problems with an eye to actually fixing them. He is confident that problems can be resolved.

   

These subsidized families are unable to compete with their neighbors in basic areas such as clothing, opportunities to travel, and social experiences. The children of the subsidized end up feeling inferior to their peers; worse, some develop envy and animosity toward their neighborhood and school peers.

The only beneficiaries are the Obamas and Castros, who think they are doing good through their charitable mandates. These mandates are funded by taxpayers, who are generally unaware of how their taxes fund a welfare system that breeds animosity and assails the beneficiaries’ self-worth.

Second, America’s academic elites are debating whether required algebra is really necessary. They argue that mandatory algebra is the chief reason that 20 percent of young Americans fail to graduate from high school. Broken families, teen pregnancy, drugs, and politically correct curriculum are not mentioned as contributing factors.

The leading proponent of abandoning algebra is political scientist Andrew Hacker, a professor emeritus at Queens College. It is significant that he is a political scientist and not an educator or mathematician. Mr. Hacker presses his argument by asking the critical and penetrating question, “Will algebra help you understand the federal budget?” A more meaningful question might be “Would anything help us understand the federal budget?”

 

Liberal and conservative political ideologues have no motivation to fix anything. Both seek to grow their political, bureaucratic, and academic kingdoms at the expense of unaware taxpayers.

   

Rather than looking at problems as problems requiring solutions, liberal and conservative politicians, bureaucrats, and academics seek to impose solutions that ignore fixing anything.

Mr. Trump does seem arrogant to these folks because he looks at problems with an eye to actually fixing them. He is confident that problems can be resolved.

Liberal and conservative political ideologues have no motivation to fix anything. Both seek to grow their political, bureaucratic, and academic kingdoms at the expense of unaware taxpayers. To do that, they need to breed more problems so they can con the public into believing that if they are given more money, they will fix what it is they have broken.

The charade goes on. Maybe Mr. Trump can break the downward spiral.

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A Voice from Fly-Over Country is copyright © 2016 by Robert L. Hale and the Fitzgerald Griffin Foundation. All rights reserved.

Robert L. Hale received his J.D. in law from Gonzaga University Law School in Spokane, Washington. He is founder and director of a non-profit public interest law firm. For more than three decades he has been involved in drafting proposed laws and counseling elected officials in ways to remove burdensome and unnecessary rules and regulations.

See Mr. Hale's biographical sketch.

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