Since Trump’s inauguration, I’ve tended to sit back and simply observe. Everyone has their own stories of the polarizing effects of the election. Three months later, tensions continue to run high. Families and friendships are still split. Protests abound. Social media comments…well, they follow their typical patterns of shallowness and cynicism.
For the record, here’s a few of my own thoughts:
The Constitution is Still Good Policy
Politicians typically get judged on their personality and charisma–sometimes even on their beliefs and credentials. But in America, judgment should ultimately be based on that to which the politician swears an oath to uphold: the Constitution.
Every president since George Washington has taken the same oath.The Constitution is the law of the land. The president is simply elected to preserve, protect and defend it. That’s his job.
A valid evaluation requires two things (at least): time and patience. Time to see what a person does with the responsibility he’s been given. Patience to wait. It’s debatable that Trump is receiving either. Nor is it apparent that loyalty to the Constitution is the benchmark by which he’s being judged.
Economic Freedom is Still Good Policy
Every country has a right to maintain sovereignty over its own economic affairs. The dark side of globalism is what it is at its core: a small conglomerate of international corporations and banking cartels that decide what’s best for everybody.
In reality, they decide what’s best for themselves.
So I’m not especially concerned when an administration stands questions the economic soundness of NAFTA and the TPP, or when it seeks to lure industry back to America. It’s economic common sense. It’s the same reason I applaud the UK for Brexit. It’s why I’m happy for Iceland’s stance to pay back foreign investors on its own terms.
I think it’s a good thing that the stock market has done exceptionally well in 2017 (though that seems to be changing) and that the job numbers are improving. Perhaps Trump should be given the benefit of the doubt.
Non-Interventionism is Still Good Policy
Trump will make mistakes and he’ll do things I won’t like. I’m withholding judgment at the moment on the Syria situation. Trump is clearly practicing diplomacy on multiple levels. He’s sending strong messages and attempting to garner GOP support.
However, Assad is not primarily the problem. I know he’s not a great guy. Neither was Saddam Hussein. But Assad is simply trying to get his country back. It’s highly questionable, not to mention illogical, that Assad would gas his own people.
The distinction between so-called rebel forces and ISIS/Al-Qaeda soldiers is extremely blurry. Giving any sort of support to rebel forces by a show of military force seems to be counterproductive. There are no good guys in this scenario. Endorsing (intentionally or accidentally) either side is a shaky policy.
And what about Trump’s previous vow of non-interventionism? It is hard for me to see how Trump is going to do both: appear strong and keep America neutral. He has avowed to counter radical Islam. This was apparently the purpose of dropping the bomb in Afghanistan.
But this and other actions will likely have consequences. There will be blow-back. Whether those consequences will be worth present actions is, of course, yet to be seen.
Trump will do well to keep focused on upholding the Bill of Rights, maintaining economic sovereignty and pursuing a non-interventionist policy. These three ideological pillars once made “America great.” They encourage the democratic process, individual rights and religious freedom. Only time will tell if Trump will stay true to this course.