Trump’s First Year: Promises Kept Amid Critical Firestorm

By | 2017-06-02T18:30:05+00:00 January 18, 2018|
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President Trump promised in his first inaugural address that his administration would be guided by one “crucial conviction: that a nation exists to serve its citizens.” He went on to say that “every decision on trade, on taxes, on immigration, on foreign affairs, will be made to benefit American workers and American families.” His first year in office has been the story of promises kept.

And while the president’s critics reflect on a year full of sound and fury, the president and his supporters will take satisfaction in a year of successes despite unyielding opposition.

By every measure of personal and national prosperity, the nation is better off than it was one year ago. The Trump administration has overseen a renewed respect for citizenship. Gone is the lofty sounding rhetoric of globalism that led to unwinnable foreign wars and open borders. Back is talk of what we can do together as Americans. 

You’d hardly know of his accomplishments by watching cable news . . . 

Read the rest at USA Today.

About the Author:

Chris Buskirk
Chris is the Publisher and Editor of American Greatness and the host of The Seth & Chris Show. He was a Publius Fellow at the Claremont Institute. and received a Fellowship from the Earhart Foundation. Chris is a serial entrepreneur who has built and sold businesses in financial services and digital marketing. He is a frequent guest on NPR's Morning Edition. His writing has appeared in The Washington Post, The Hill, and elsewhere. Connect with Chris on Twitter at @TheChrisBuskirk
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5 Comments

  1. Old exJarhead January 18, 2018 at 5:50 pm

    After 28 years of decline; we, he, are Making America Great AGAIN!
    27 years late!

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  2. charlessmall18 January 18, 2018 at 10:33 pm

    In the original ancient Greek parable, poor Narcissus offended the Greek gods somehow and so they put a spell on him that made him fall in love with the first person he saw. The first person he happened to see was his own reflection in a pond. So he starved to death because he could not tear his gaze away from himself. No, Narcissus was not a narcissist.

    Histrionic: 1. of or pertaining to actors or acting [!]. 2. deliberately affected or self-consciously emotional; overly dramatic, in behavior or speech. Note the surprising first definition which is listed first because it appeared first in English, not because it is the “best” definition as many assume. The second definition is the one that actually applies to the DSM-IV condition. However – think about it! – it has been proven that a significant percentage of actors suffer from NPD/HPD which explains, among other things, their obnoxious behavior and many marriages.

    Narcissistic Personality Disorder
    (formerly Nardisstic/Histrionic Personality Distorder)

    NPD/HPD is in the DSM-IV
    NPD is in the DSM-V

    NPD/HPD is characterized by dramatic, emotional behavior, in the same category as antisocial and borderline personality disorders

    .
    NPD/HPD symptoms may include:

    * Believing that they are better than others
    * Blaming everyone but themselves for their failures
    * Fantasizing about power, success and attractiveness
    * Exaggerating their achievements or talents
    * Expecting constant praise and admiration
    * Believing that they are special and acting accordingly
    * Throwing a prolonged, histrionic fit when confronted with their own shortcomings
    * Failing to recognize other people’s emotions and feelings
    * Expecting others to go along with their ideas and plans unquestioninly
    * Taking advantage of others
    * Expressing disdain for those they feel are inferior (which is essentially everybody)
    * Being jealous of others
    * Believing that others are jealous of them
    * Setting unrealistic goals
    * Being easily hurt and rejected
    * Having a fragile self-esteem

    Although some features of NPD/HPD may seem like having confidence or strong self-esteem at first blush, NPD/HPDs are big on “show” for making good first impressions), it’s not the same and this quickly becomes apparent once you get to know an NPD/HPD sufferer. NPD/HPD crosses the border of healthy confidence and self-esteem into thinking so highly of themselves that you put themselves on a pedestal. In contrast, people who have healthy confidence and self-esteem don’t value themselves more than they value others.

    When they have narcissistic personality disorder, they often come across as conceited, boastful or pretentious. They often monopolize conversations. They may belittle or look down on people they perceive as inferior. They may have a sense of entitlement. And when they don’t receive the special treatment to which they feel entitled, they may become very impatient or angry. They may insist on having “the best” of everything. For example, the best car, the best athletic club, the best education, the best ideas, the best medical care, the best social circles, and so on.

    But underneath all this behavior often lies a fragile self-esteem. Such people obviously have trouble handling anything that may be perceived as criticism. So therapists agree that the condition is, for all practical purposes, un-treatable, because the first step in any treatment of a mental condition is to admit the you yourself have a problem – which an NPD sufferer is not only incapable of, but even hinting that an NPD sufferer has the problem of being an NPD sufferer, triggers and extreme reaction of the condition itself.

    “Crazy” is not a useful term when discussing mental disorders seriously. Basically there are two types of mental disorders: psychoses, such as schizophrenia or bi-polar disorder, that are caused by physical defects in the brain that can be treated but not cured, and personality disorders, that are learned behaviours (that sometimes can be un-learned/cured). When unusual behaviour or behaviours rise to the level of a personality disorder requires a through evaluation and history of the possible disorder (and possibly other disorders become they often come in constellations) by a trained professional to make a diagnosis. And not by bloviating arm-chair psychologists using argumentium ad ignorantiam or probatur assertio frequens to make a diagnosis. Also a 10-minute preliminary screen for overt signs of dementia is not probative, one way or the other, either. Take for, example, the very rare (one percent or less of population) Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD). The damage this personality does to an NPD sufferer and to those involved with an NPD sufferer is almost always severe. While an NPD sufferer’s behaviour is unusual, it’s not “crazy” in the common sense of that word. Here is a bit of background on the words themselves plus a list of symptoms and exposition I coped from the Mayo Clinic’s site about NPD:
    In the original ancient Greek parable, poor Narcissus offended the Greek gods somehow and so they put a spell on him that made him fall in love with the first person he saw. The first person he happened to see was his own reflection in a pond. So he starved to death because he could not tear his gaze away from himself. No, Narcissus was not a narcissist!
    From the OED: Histrionic: 1. of or pertaining to actors or acting. 2. deliberately affected or self-consciously emotional; overly dramatic, in behaviour or speech. Note the surprising first definition which is listed first in the OED because it appeared first in English, not because it is the “best” definition as some might assume. The second definition is the one that actually applies to the former DSM-IV Narcissistic/Histrionic personality disorder.
    Narcissistic Personality Disorder
    (formerly Narcissistic/Histrionic Personality Disorder)
    NPD/HPD is in the DSM-IV
    NPD is in the DSM-V
    NPD/HPD is characterized by dramatic, emotional behaviour, in the same category as antisocial and borderline personality disorders.
    NPD/HPD symptoms may include:
    * Believing that they are better than others
    * Blaming everyone but themselves for their failures
    * Fantasizing about power, success and attractiveness
    * Exaggerating their achievements or talents
    * Expecting constant praise and admiration
    * Believing that they are special and acting accordingly
    * Throwing a prolonged, histrionic fit when confronted with their own shortcomings
    * Failing to recognize other people’s emotions and feelings
    * Expecting others to go along with their ideas and plans unquestioningly
    * Taking advantage of others
    * Expressing disdain for those they feel are inferior (which is essentially everybody)
    * Being jealous of others
    * Believing that others are jealous of them
    * Setting unrealistic goals
    * Being easily hurt and rejected
    * Having a fragile self-esteem
    Although some behaviours of an NPD sufferer may seem like having confidence or strong self-esteem at first blush (NPD sufferers are big on “show” for making good first impressions), it’s not really the same and this quickly becomes apparent once you get to know an NPD sufferer. NPD crosses the border of healthy confidence and self-esteem into thinking so highly of themselves that you put themselves on a pedestal. In contrast, people who have healthy confidence and self-esteem don’t value themselves more than they value others.
    NPD sufferes often come across as conceited, boastful or pretentious. They often monopolize conversations. They may belittle or look down on people they perceive as inferior. They may have a sense of entitlement. And when they don’t receive the special treatment to which they feel entitled, they may become very impatient or angry. They may insist on having “the best” of everything. For example, the best car, the best athletic club, the best education, the best ideas, the best medical care, the best social circles, and so on.
    But underneath the thin veneer of all these behaviours often lies a fragile self-esteem. Such people obviously have trouble handling anything that may be perceived as criticism. So therapists agree that the condition is, for all practical purposes, untreatable. That’s because the first step in any treatment of a mental condition is to admit the you yourself have a problem – which an NPD sufferer is not only incalculable of, but even hinting that to an NPD sufferer that they have the problem of being an NPD sufferer, triggers an extreme reaction of the condition itself.
    Sharing a few symptoms, but still quite different is the

  3. charlessmall18 January 18, 2018 at 10:41 pm

    Don’t innovate; conglomerate

    First of all, “knowledge workers” are living in a dreamworld where they think that their jobs are immune from the trend to automate (or semi-automate) those jobs that can be automated (or semi-automated) and those jobs that can’t, are being ruthlessly de-skilled. Semi-automated jobs would include all forms of computer aided design.

    Many of those who voted for Trump because their jobs disappeared or which jobs now pay less understand what that feels like. The just don’t know who to blame (time and motion experts, industrial engineers, quality assurance personnel, etc). So too do “Knowledge workers” such as real estate agents, travel agents, stock brokers, accountants, and etc, who have seen the number of their jobs decrease as well as those that remain semi-automated and therefore paying less. One of the reasons Wal-Mart can sell goods so inexpensively is that the company invested heavily computerized modern materials handling and accounting. And American Exceptionalism does not extend to computerized modern materials handling and accounting. Such techniques work anywhere in the world equally well.

    Take the current foolish campaigns to teach our children how to program computers. The hardware tools of the trade necessary to become a programmer are: a decent PC, an Internet connection, and a place to plug it in. All the tools for developing programs are free. So the US Bureau of Labor Statistics quite rightly predicts that applications programming is a shrinking field in the US that will get lower and lower paid because the cost of entry is so low that virtually anyone in the world who has the requisite smarts can get into the programming business. And American Exceptionalism does not extend to the requisite smarts for programming. Such smarts are evenly divided across the human race.

    In the automotive field, all the major manufacturers are moving in the direction of having one design group that develops “platforms” (basic cars that can be adapted to various markets with different engines, trim, accessories, and so on) and the tooling and factories to produce them. Those working with such groups might be as highly paid as before, it’s just that the automotive makers need far fewer of them. And as the higher quality of the Japanese cars that gained a marketing beachfront in the US in the aftermath of the 1973 OPEC “oil crisis” proved, American Exceptionalism did not, and still does not extend to the design and assembly of automobiles. Currently the Buick division of what is left of General Motors is the only US auto maker that consistently ranks with German and Japanese cars in Consumer Reports quality and reliability ratings.

    How many microprocessor design groups are needed? You mean besides the ones at Intel, AMD, and ARM? And do they lay out the masks manually like the ones for the 8080 and the Z80 were done? No. Today they get a lot of help from software.

    Basic industrial products such as aluminum or steel? The primary raw material needed to produce aluminum is not bauxite ore, but kilowatt-hours and lots of them. Which is why the socialist Hydro Quebec, which Province of Quebec-owned massive hydropower system has lots of extra kilowatt-hours to sell, is why aluminum refining it done in Quebec and won’t be done in the US any time soon. Steel? Making common steels is a low-margin business. But specialty steels? Smith & Wesson, in Springfield, MA, does about 30% of its business in specialty steels and heat treating.

    So between automating, semi-automating, de-skilling and rent seeking – all of which are accelerating at exponential rates – it’s a very good question if there will be enough people left who are making good enough money to afford all the stuff that is being produced.

    This is not a joke.

    That Trump and his advisors think they can do something about these trends on a nationalistic basis is a joke. Especially if Trump listens to the generals and funds a military establishment that can fight two or more major campaigns anywhere in the world at once. The Dutch, Swiss, Swedish, French, Korean, and Japanese (among others) multinationals seem to be able to do business around the world without such an expenditure.

    Yeah, but then there are all those threatening threats that are threatening us so threateningly. So what’s a military-industrial complex to do?

    From the Oxford Dictionary of the English Language:

    de-skill, verb

    1. reduce the level of skill required to carry out (a job):
    “advances in technology had deskilled numerous working-class jobs”
    2. make the skills of (a worker) obsolete.

    First Known Use of deskill: 1941

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rent-seeking

    Rent-seeking

    In economics and in public-choice theory, rent-seeking involves seeking to increase a corporation’s or an individual’s share of existing wealth without creating new wealth. Rent-seeking results in reduced economic efficiency through poor allocation of resources, reduced actual wealth creation, lost government revenue, increased income inequality, and (potentially) national decline.

    Attempts at capture of regulatory agencies to gain a coercive monopoly can result in advantages for the rent seeker in the market while imposing disadvantages on (non-corrupt) competitors. The idea was originated by Gordon Tullock and the term was coined by Anne Krueger. The word “rent” does not refer here to payment on a lease but stems instead from Adam Smith’s division of incomes into profit, wage, and rent.

    Don’t innovate, conglomerate

    Adobe: to date Adobe has bought 45 companies
    Apple: to date Apple has bought 82 companies and an interest in 3 other companies
    Microsoft: to date has bought 197 companies and an interest in 67 other companies

    When a conglomerate buys another company, no wealth is created, it’s a zero-sum transaction. And typically the number of jobs decreases because, after a review, they fire half of every job that they have two of after the merger.

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