As of today I find myself starting a new project in Silicon Valley – a place I’ve never been before, but now I expect I’ll be here for 6-12 months. I’ve ensconced myself in a one-bedroom, one-bath furnished apartment that is costing me about half again as much per month as a 4800 square foot house in the Denver area – granted I bid the job with that in mind.
But, holy crap!
Anyway – moving right along:
The news of the weekend was, of course, the inauguration and its aftermath. I wasn’t able to watch the event Friday as I was on the road, negotiating a couple of snowy mountain passes in western Colorado and then making my way across Utah. But I listened in as events proceeded, thanks to the miracles of modern satellite radio. The moment of the day was President Trump’s speech:
It’s important to note that the speech did not present many traditional Republican themes; it was populist, not conservative; somewhat protectionist, not unfettered free trade.
It’s also important to note that most of the free trade agreements brokered in recent years haven’t really ended up being “free” trade; the governments involved can’t resist meddling.
Donald Trump shows us once again that he’s something different. He ran as a third-party candidate, co-opting a major political party in the doing. Some of his rhetoric in this speech could have come from Bernie Sanders; some from Pat Buchanan. It’s hard to read, and I’m still making up my mind about it.
But one thing I find baffling is the pants-shitting from the professional Left. Protests were expected, sure; that’s the First Amendment in play, and I’m delighted to live in a country where protestors aren’t shot or jailed, as would happen in plenty of places around the globe. But there are “concerns” expressed about one phrase President Trump used: “America First.”
Another note: You’ll notice that I have now eschewed the use of “The Donald” to refer to President Trump. He is now the President, duly elected and inaugurated, and I will only refer to him as such. I did the same for President Obama. Readers of these virtual pages know I have little regard for President Obama, but it is a matter of respect for the office of the President to address the man in that office properly. I’ll do the same now for President Trump.