Dear (Eventual) Stickies and Great-Grandstickies,
The Donald is a consciously created character having much in common with the professional bad guys of the fake wrestling industry. Keep in mind that endless, unlikely plot twists are a staple of this art form (apologies to Meryl Streep and company, et al.). Bad guys become good guys become bad guys become ambiguous guys.
The USA has morphed into a bizarre reality show and the Donald is the director, producer, and star. He knows what he wants to accomplish, he really does want to Make America Great Again. I'm certain he knows America is still great, but she's gotten lost in the woods. Hopefully only temporarily. But he probably would regard even my simple analogy as unnecessarily complicated.
Keep it simple, my friend. That's show biz. That's how you keep the audience in the palm of your hand.
I wrote a column about this (as you may or may not know) very subject in early December of last year, my third official "Dear Stickies" letter, that was my take on how it was that the Donald managed to become the POTUS much to the surprise of most.
I voted for Gary Johnson, the libertarian party candidate, in spite of some serious reservations. I mention this for two reasons.
First, I wrote another column suggesting that people vote for me for president because I sincerely had no desire whatsoever to be the president. My logic was based on a bit of ancient Chinese wisdom. The best
The whys and wherefores of that proposition require an entire letter of their own. Suffice it to say that they're (hopefully) obvious to a seasoned grup with common sense. Oh, please don't assume the previous sentence necessarily has anything to do with you since I've no way of knowing when, or even if, you will ever read this. Anyway, I have to confess I've been known to feel clueless for days at a time, so in the end, I couldn't bring myself to vote for myself.
Second, I'm trying to maintain an open and/or optimistic frame of mind as far as the Donald is concerned in spite of my doubts, which are legion.
I'm a somewhat gloomy chap by nature but I was fortunate enough to be married to a woman who absolutely insisted on "looking on the bright side" in any and all situations in spite of the fact she was doomed to die young due to the health problems she was born with.
Though gloomy is my baseline, I'm a firm believer that we live in a universe where everything is defined by, and is part of, it's opposite. More ancient Chinese wisdom, that yin-yang stuff you have probably heard about (yet another letter asking to be written).
For the moment, let's just say then when I find myself waiting for the results of one of fates coin tosses I'm aware it occasionally will land sunny side up (though, of course, I doubt it) since that's the nature of reality. In fact, to honor the memory of the best friend I'm ever likely to have, I consciously make a point of not only hoping it lands sunny side up, I force myself to acknowledge there's usually a sunny side even when it doesn't.
[By the way, it's yin-yang, not ying-yang. A ying-yang is a commonly used expression, with variable meanings, that usually refers to one of one's naughtier bits.]
That said, the Donald has set about making America great again. He's chosen his cabinet secretaries and most are not the usual suspects. That is, his cabinet is top heavy with successful people from the real world and light on professional politicians and academics. Good.
It's said that his management style is similar to that of Lincoln and FDR -- encourage individuals with wildly different viewpoints to fight it out, he takes it all in, then he makes a decision. Also good.
He's issued a bunch of executive orders, most of which I like, some that I love, a few that creep me out. In acknowledgment of looking on the bright side, let me mention the two I love the most.
First, folks appointed to positions in The Gummit by the Donald can't cash in when they move on in that they are forbidden to become lobbyists for five years after leaving The Gummit. Also, they can't lobby on behalf of a foreign gummit, forever.
In my semi-humble opinion, this should be the law of the land, not an executive order that can be canceled by the next POTUS. And of course, this being The Gummit, there's a loophole. Lobbyists have to register as lobbyists. Call yourself a consultant instead of a lobbyist and you're off the hook. However, with tighter laws, and most importantly, congressional term limits, the people could still win. Get rid of professional legislators and "consultants" will instantly lose much of their clout.
[Another semi-humble opinion: Without congressional term limits we are doomed. I've mentioned this before, I'll mention it again.]
Second, a new rule for the rule makers. I speak of the unelected bureaucrats (and bureauons) of The Gummit. Specifically, the minions (of The Gummit"s 1,700,000,000 professional minions) that crank out the endless reams of rules and regs that keep the citizens of the land of the free in line.
For every new rule, two old rules must be canceled. Again, why ain't this the law of the land?
If you're curious about just how many rules The Gummit can come after you with, so am I. Google the phrase, "approximately how many rules has the federal government passed" or something like it and see what happens. If you can find what looks like a legitimate straight answer please email me at the email@example.com.
He's officially authorized the building of -- The Wall. Now, regardless of what you or any given one of my gentlereaders feels about immigrants, legal or otherwise, this is just dumb. I hope it's hyperbole, a negotiating tactic.
The only purpose a wall across the Mexican border will serve is as a temporary jobs program. Build it and they will come. Under, over, or around, they will come.
Then we'll have to build walls along the other three borders. Of course, beach front property will suddenly get dramatically cheaper. And, we could build the wall a hundred feet back from the water and create giant public beaches on both coasts extending from Canada to Mexico.
Wait a minute! What are we going to do about Alaska? Maybe that's why the Donald speaks highly of the Puteen. He's gonna' con him into building a wall on Russia's side of the Bering sea. Poppa loves you.
Have an OK day.
*NOTICE* (I can dream can't I?)
Dear Undocumented/Illegal Aliens (U/IA),
If we catch you trying to sneak in, you're going home. Period.
No more sanctuaries. If you commit a crime, no matter how long you've been living here, you're going home. Let's make it clear that if you're a U/IA you don't get access to our safety nets. Keep this in mind, we're not kidding. We won't let you die because as a group, we're nice people. But once we patch you up, you're going home.
Sound harsh? You bet. But our conscience is clear.
Because we're going to finally acknowledge that almost no one wants to round up the U/IAs living here peacefully. We're gonna' admit that most of you have jobs that some of us, by necessity, have, but most of us don't want. We're going to admit the real unemployment rate is above 9%.
We're going to document you. All will be required to register, and if they can pass a criminal background check and have a job or are supported by someone that does, they will be given a red/white/blue card so we can find out who they are and make them legal -- maybe, eventually, citizens.
Once legally registered, you will have access to our safety nets. However, if you're not registered and we catch you, you're outta' here. Once registered you won't be deported for criminal acts, just punished like our native born bad guys, but will never become a citizen.
Registered, seasonal migrant workers, who can pass criminal background checks, will be permitted but will have no access to public safety nets and will be instantly deported if it's discovered they're not registered. Social services to be supplied by any legal charity or employer that wishes to do so.