Keeping America More or Less The Same – The Arch Conservative

By Sarah Scherer, January 27, 2020

President Trumps first term leaves much to be desired, but so does the Democrats line-up

As the modern red scare gained bogus development after bogus development ad nauseum earlier this year, I couldnt help my sense of amusement as the hordes of media moguls and federal agents led Americans through an aimless and absurd narrative. Lo and behold, the Russia probe was nonsense. The Mueller report stated, [the investigation] did not find that the Trump campaign, or anyone associated with it, conspired or coordinated with the Russian government to assist the Trump campaign. Most Americans think otherwise, and who can blame them? Thats what a three year, 24-hour propaganda reel on most major news networks will do.

Clearly, I was too quick to be amused. The Donald seemed to coast to the front of the 2016 Republican primary, attracting thousands of people to his rallies, despite media negativity. Some saw Trump as a marketing genius, a 4D chess player who didnt care what they were saying, so long as his name was plastered on newspapers, magazines, and on the lips of cable news anchors. After four years of being dragged over the coals by liberals and bygone era neocons, the criticism seems to have gotten to a man who built his brand on likeability.

Its hard to imagine now. Trump? Likable? But recall his iconic Trump towers in every major U.S. city, watch an interview or two from the nineties, and youll see a man who was once admired as an American icon. A success story. A man who was humble, even, about his success. Disregard the post-facto outrage about his so-called mean-spiritedness on The Apprentice by humorless dolts. The fact is, Trump has shifted from beloved icon to the subject of never-ending controversy in three short years. The effect? The Trump presidency is Keeping America The Same, and I cant say Im surprised. If I had idiot, clown, irresponsible, dangerous, traitor, and liar ringing in my ears for a day, let alone years, Id probably break, too.

Where shall I begin? Build The Wall, the slogan second only to MAGA, has remained just that a slogan. This is a huge victory for the Democrats who have succeeded in blocking funds for the border wall, even from the Pentagon. It will be interesting to see whether Trump campaign re-promises the wall in 2020, but his lack of progress thus far will not inspire confidence in voters.

On foreign policy, I couldnt say I was disappointed. That is, up until yesterday when Trump declared war on Iran via Twitter. I fail to see any reason for sending young Americans to fight yet another aimless war other than prejudice against the backwards brown people who dont want a Western-style puppet government hoisted upon them. Or maybe its our utter disdain for those terrorists like Qasem Soleimani, that guy we just assassinated, who waged a 3-year long, successful military campaign against ISIS from 2014 to 2017. He was described by Dr. Afshon Ostovar of the Naval Postgraduate School as the linchpin in bringing together Shia and Kurdish forces to fight ISIS in an Oxford University Press article. Really, what is the aim?

One day, well get over our Cold War nostalgia and stop fighting our proxy war in the Middle East for no purpose but to flex our muscles at Putin, who is neither communist nor whose pipeline blueprints concern U.S. security. There are some communists who are a concern, though, and we ought to be preparing for that inevitable war with the Peoples Republic. And I dont mean trade war.

Speaking of trade, Trump recently accomplished replacing NAFTA with the United States Mexico Canada Agreement (USMCA). The agreement requires that 75 percent of materials that make up a car, for example, be sourced from North America. This is in comparison to NAFTAs 62.5 percent requirement. USMCA also requires that the workers producing these cars are paid a minimum wage of $16.00 per hour. As was true for NAFTA, failure to meet these terms would result in a 2.5 percent import tariff. Time will tell whether this new NAFTA rejuvenates the Rest Belt, boosting U.S. industry and Trumps polling numbers.

Among Republicans, there are the pleasantly surprised and the fed-up. Those who are happy right now probably didnt vote for Trump in 2016, or simply voted against Hillary. Ben Shapiro comes to mind, who resigned from Breitbart in 2016 because of their open support of candidate Trump. In a late 2018 editorial for Fox News, Shapiro had already changed his tune, calling Trumps foreign policy fantastic, and praising the Presidents ability to draw us closer to allies and throw a scare into our enemies.

On the converse, Trumps biggest proponents from 2016 are either uninspired or downright furious. Ann Coulter is a good example, who in 2016 said of Trump in an interview with The Guardian, Finally, we have a candidate who cares about Americans and not just the donor class. Disappointed by his lack of follow-through on Mexican immigration and the wall, Coulter didnt hold back criticism on The Daily Callers podcast, saying, Trump will just have been a joke presidency who scammed the American people, amused the populists for a while, but hell have no legacy whatsoever.

In recent days came Trumps decision to not retaliate against Irans missile attacks. Many expected a war to start, as World War 3 and military draft memes flooded the Internet. This unexpected decision in light of his aggressive tweets make the Trump presidency as much of a wild card in 2020 as it was in 2016.

Trumps failure to deliver populist promises like the border wall may affect his reelection odds. The effects of his trade policy, as well as an end to negotiations with China, have yet to be seen. On the campaign trail, Trump would do well to speak to voters outside the swamp, remembering the populist constituency that enthusiastically elected him in 2016.

Sarah Scherer is a senior studying international affairs. Sheisthe Executive EditorofThe Arch Conservative.

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Keeping America More or Less The Same - The Arch Conservative

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