Obama greeted by “Yankee go home” signs in Peru and Greece

President Obama was in Greece and Peru a few days ago. He did not get a friendly welcome from the street according to many news reports:

In Lima, Peru for the APEC summit, hundreds of angry protesters greeted his arrival, demonstrating against him and TPP in the city’s financial district. Clashes with police erupted.

One sign said Salga de Obama, La Bestia Capitalista (Get Out Obama, The Capitalist Beast). Another displaying a skull and crossbones said EL TPP MATA (TPP kills).

According to Socialist Left alliance leader Martin Guerra, it “destroys the country’s economy, diminishes labor rights, privatize territories and hinders access to basic medical care.”

I guess that the Cairo speech, “hope and change” and “si se puede” did nothing for these demonstrations. They hate us just as much as they did when a pro-life cowboy from Texas was traveling on Air Force One.

To be fair to President Obama, these marches have been around for a long time, from VP Nixon in Caracas 1958 to President Reagan accused of starting a war by nuclear freeze nuts in 1983 to President Bush hailed as Hitler in 2003.

So what’s new? Well, it was not supposed to happen with Mr. Obama. We never had a president who ran to be popular and loved around the world.

P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

Turkey of the year: Who else but the media?

(My new American Thinker post)

We always have a little fun this time of the year and hand out some turkey awards. Frankly, I feel bad for the poor turkey who never ran to be the dish of choice for Thanksgiving or the symbol of these awards.

So with all due respect to the turkey, let me say that there is a clear-cut winner in 2016. In fact, I can’t recall the last time that anyone ran away with the award like this.

My “turkey of the year” is the media.

First, they gave Trump a billion dollars of free media. I guess that Trump was good for ratings because they chased him like a bunch of girls chasing Elvis in his prime. They went everywhere that Trump went and ate out of his hand no matter what he fed them.

Second, they went out of their way to destroy Trump, from 24/7 negative coverage at CNN to the New York Timesdetermining that it was their duty to protect us from his presidency.

In the end, Trump shocked them with a victory that not a single expert at these outlets saw coming. Now, he is playing them like a violin with daily speculation about his appointments.

Remember the old commercial? Bo knows baseball? Trump knows media!

A few weeks ago, Gallup made it all official: Nobody likes the media anymore. Worse than that, nobody believes them, as we see from this recent survey:

 Americans’ trust and confidence in the mass media “to report the news fully, accurately and fairly” has dropped to its lowest level in Gallup polling history, with 32% saying they have a great deal or fair amount of trust in the media.

This is down eight percentage points from last year.

One of three Americans believes that the media will call it accurately!

How long would a car maker survive if only one of three Americans had faith in their cars? Or what airline could stay a business with a reputation like that? Or who would buy a ticket to a baseball game if only one of three thought that the umpire was being honest behind the plate?

So the media is our “turkey of the year”. No doubt about it. They are off to a great start to win the award next year!

P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

The Clinton Thanksgiving dinner (a post from 2007)

(Note:  This is a post from Thanksgiving Week 2007.   At the time, President Bush was in his second term and Mrs. Clinton was looking ahead to 2008.  I share it to show that this cynical woman has not changed one bit.)

We wish Mr. & Mrs. Clinton a Happy Thanksgiving Dinner.

However, we are confident that Bill & Hillary will not be talking about free trade, drivers licenses in NY, or the unreleased documents at the Clinton Library.

Bill and Hillary Clinton are growing further and further apart with respect to their politics.  He moved to the center because he understood that the US does not elect liberals to the presidency.  Bill Clinton also had Ross Perot to take middle class votes from the Repblicans!  She is moving to the left in a hurry because the primary process is dominated by the same liberals that her husband threw overboard to win reelection in ’96!

There is a lot more:

“She has vowed to scrap the “don’t ask, don’t tell” rules her husband put in place allowing gays to serve in the military but only if they do not admit to being gay.

She has called for repealing part of the Defense of Marriage Act, which tried to limit the spread of same-sex marriage and which her husband signed, albeit reluctantly.

And she disagreed with her husband’s statement that there should be a presidential exception to a torture ban in case of imminent terrorist threat.” (A Clinton Distancing Act)

My guess is that the Clintons will not talk politics on Thanksgiving.   Hillary Clinton is running against Bill Clinton’s domestic legacy!

Again, that was from 2007 and nothing about this cynical and calculating woman has changed.  

Of course, she did not win the nomination in 2008 or the election in 2016. 

We can say thanks for that!

P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

He told me in Spanish: “ObamaCare me esta matando”!

Like many of you, I stop and get my morning coffee in the same place. It’s not unusual to talk a little politics over coffee these days.

I asked the manager: Were you surprised that Trump did so well with Hispanics? He answered no. By the way, my friend is a legal immigrant from Mexico with an outstanding work ethic and wonderful family.

There is a bit of disbelief in some corners about the Hispanic vote and president-elect Trump. it certainly did not turn out as predicted.   In other words, Hispanics voted for Trump after all, as we see in this USA Today report:

The Hispanic vote was bigger and more influential in the 2016 presidential election, just as predicted, but it also provided one surprise: more support for President-elect Donald Trump than expected.

Hispanics favored Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton 65% to 29%, a 36-point difference that helped her secure winning margins in states like Nevada and Colorado and kept her competitive late into the night in other key battleground states.

But that margin, based on exit polling conducted by Edison Research, was smaller than the 71%-27% split that President Obama won in 2012. And it was smaller than the 72%-21% her husband, former president Bill Clinton, won in 1996.

Why did he do that well? My friend gave me the answer, and it is ObamaCare.

He told me what his new premium would be and screamed in Spanish:  “Obama Care me esta matando”!

He told me that several of friends had similar complaints.

Another problem with ObamaCare and Hispanics is the idea that they are being forced to get it.   My experience over the years is that a lot of Hispanics pay cash for the doctors or medicine.  This is especially true of young men who rarely use insurance.

So what about the experts? They were wrong, specially so many in the Hispanic media. Why so wrong? My experience is that many Hispanic journalists are really Democrats working at a news agency.

Finally, the GOP has to do better. We will need more than 30% of a growing voting bloc. Hopefully, we can now focus on economic growth and school choice.

Let’s do that and you will see that 30% grow over time!

P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

Are Cubans about to turn Florida red again?

(My new American Thinker post)

In 2000, many will tell you that Governor Bush got a big help out of the Elian Gonzalez episode. It certainly didn’t hurt! He won by less than a 1,000 votes out of 7 million.

In 2012, President Obama beat Governor Romney by less than a point. Wonder who would have won Florida if Cuban Americans had known that the Obama administration was having secret talks with Cuba to reestablish relations?

In 2016, Cuba is back in the news again. The issue is that many of us disagree with the Obama approach toward Cuba, a policy that seems to have benefited the Castro dictatorship at the expense of the Cuban people.

I don’t live in Florida but my hunch may prove to be right on election day, as Andres Oppenheimer wrote this week:

If Republican candidate Donald Trump wins Florida, as some polls predict, and goes on to win the Nov. 8 election — a big if, but not an impossible outcome — he might have President Obama to thank for lending him a hand in the final stretch of the race.

Obama’s Oct. 14 decision to further relax the U.S. embargo on Cuba by allowing American tourists to bring back unlimited quantities of Cuban rum and cigars, as well as his Oct. 26 decision to abstain for the first time in a United Nations vote against the U.S. embargo on Cuba, have probably pushed many undecided Cuban Americans in Florida to vote for Trump.

“Cubans return to Trump,” read a sub-headline of The New York Times Upshot/Siena University poll released Oct. 27, which gave Trump a four-point lead in Florida. Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton was leading in the same poll only a month earlier.

The poll’s explanatory text by The New York Times’ Nate Cohn said that Trump’s surprising comeback in Florida — the most important swing state — might be thanks to Cuban American voters. Trump’s support among Cuban-American voters in Florida was at 52 percent, up from 33 percent in September, the story said.

My own unscientific poll is that Cubans fall into two camps.

The first camp, or where I reside, is that the Obama opening has opened nothing, except an oxygen line to a failing dictatorship. We are stunned that the Obama administration demanded nothing in return for a U.S. flag in Havana.

The second camp is made up of Cubans who were convinced that an opening would bring hope, or an opportunity for Cuba to change. My guess is that most of those Cubans are not happy with the results. They see more repression and Cubans desperately trying to leave.

On election day, these two groups will vote against the Cuba opening by putting Mr. Trump over the top.

P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

Chile and Allende on this day in 1970

On this day in 1970, my father and a couple of Chilean friends were following the presidential election on short wave radio.    I am talking the days when we didn’t have internet or cheap long distance calls.   My father was listening to the Spanish version of The Voice of America.

In the end, Salvador Allende was elected president in a 3-way contest:

Allende’s election in 1970 was his third attempt at the presidency.
In 1958, and again in 1964, Allende had run on a socialist/communist platform. In both elections, the United States government (as well as U.S. businesses such as International Telephone and Telegraph (ITT), which had significant investments in Chile) worked to defeat Allende by sending millions of dollars of assistance to his political opponents.
In 1970, the United States again worked for Allende’s defeat, but he finished first out of the four candidates. However, since he had garnered less than 40 percent of the popular vote, the final decision had to be made by the Chilean congress.
The United States worked feverishly to derail Allende’s selection but the election was upheld on October 24, 1970.
Allende immediately confirmed the worst fears of U.S. officials when he extended diplomatic recognition to North Vietnam, North Korea, and Cuba, and also began to take action to nationalize the holdings of U.S. corporations in Chile, notably ITT and Kennecott Copper.

Allende’s presidency was controversial from the start.   Chile went into political crisis that eventually led to General Pinochet overthrowing President Allende in 1973.    (I wrote about Chile’s 9-11 here)

Chile is doing quite well today, as we discussed with Carlos A Roncal in 2014.

In fact, the right had a big day in regional elections yesterday.

P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

2016: I will vote to protect the unborn

In the interest of full disclosure, I did not support Mr. Trump.

I was hoping that we’d nominate one of our extremely successful governors, from Bush to Kasich to Walker to Perry.  In Texas, I eventually voted for Rubio because all of those others were out and he was the most electable.

Let me say this.   My first vote was in 1976 when I proudly voted for President Ford.   Since that first vote, I have proudly supported each one of our nominees even when they were not my first choice such as Mr. Dole in 1996.

Since early summer, I have been struggling with a real dilemma.  However, we must think of the larger picture and voting for Donald Trump makes a lot more sense than electing Hillary Clinton by supporting another option.

In other words, someone will nominate Justices to the Supreme Court and I’d rather have Mr. Trump do that.

No one has dissected Mrs. Clinton better than Dr. Charles Krauthammer this week:

The soullessness of this campaign — all ambition and entitlement — emerges almost poignantly in the emails, especially when aides keep asking what the campaign is about.

In one largely overlooked passage, Clinton complains that her speechwriters have not given her any overall theme or rationale. Isn’t that the candidate’s job?

Asked one of her aides, Joel Benenson: “Do we have any sense from her what she believes or wants her core message to be?”

It’s that emptiness at the core that makes every policy and position negotiable and politically calculable.

Hence the embarrassing about-face on the Trans-Pacific Partnership after the popular winds swung decisively against free trade.

A Trump presidency, with VP Pence, a GOP Senate and House, could actually produce some important domestic results.

They could repeal Obama Care and actually replace it with something that puts the patient and doctor in control.

They could finally tackle tax reform, something that most of us have been calling for.

Last, but not least, a President Trump could be persuaded by Speaker Ryan to take a serious look at entitlements.

On free trade, I am not expecting much because tearing up trade agreements is a lot more complicated than everyone realizes.  I just hope that Trump’s supporters understand that.

On immigration, I do not really believe that a President Trump will get Mexico to pay for the wall or deport millions.  However, they may do something about sanctuary cities and respecting our immigration laws.

On foreign policy, it will be hell no matter who walks into the Oval Office.  President Obama is leaving such a mess in the Middle East that it won’t be pretty, from Syria to Iran.

My point is that there is hope with a Trump presidency to get some things done.

On the other side, there is no hope for governing if Mrs. Clinton wins.  There are also going to be some huge battles in the Democrat aisle because the left and Mrs. Clinton are not going to enjoy each other at all. The left is not a happy bunch these days as Politico wrote.

Yes I am voting for Mr. Trump, the lesser of the two evils this time around.

In the end, I will sleep comfortably knowing that I voted to protect the unborn this time around.

P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

A nice birthday gift if you can get it

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And the hits just keep on coming, as those Top 40 jingles used to tell us.

We learned that President Clinton was given a wonderful birthday gift years ago:

According to the newly released WikiLeaks emails, Bill Clinton, the husband of then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, received a birthday present from the Islamic country of Qatar in 2011 of $1 million.

“[Qatar] Would like to see WJC ‘for five minutes’ in NYC, to present $1 million check that Qatar promised for WJC’s birthday in 2011,” Ami Desai, director of foreign policy for the Clinton Foundation, wrote in 2012.

Let’s assume that Qatar was just giving the former president a birthday gift. In other words, let’s assume further that the wonderful people of Qatar just wanted to show their support for the former president and all of the wonderful things that he did for the world.

Or maybe his assistance in bringing the World Cup?

My question is this: do we want former presidents getting birthday gifts of this size? More importantly, do we want an ex-president, married to the current Secretary of State and future candidate for president, to be getting a gift like this? And shouldn’t gifts like these be made public? Did President Obama know that such a gift was made? Did that check go into a joint account or some account that benefits Mrs. Clinton as well?

As with everything Clinton, it raises ethical questions and transparency issues. It reminds us again that the Clintons love to navigate in secret until they are caught.

It also raises the question of what Qatar was expecting from Mr. and Mrs. Clinton. Maybe nothing, but the secrecy of this gift makes me wonder.

For the record, I am not opposed to countries honoring our ex presidents by naming schools or airports after them. I don’t even mind if they make a contribution to a charity of the president’s choice, such as to recognize the wonderful work that President and Mrs. Carter have done with Habitat for Humanity.

Again, this gift was made in secret and that’s wrong because we are talking about a former president married to the Secretary of State.

It stinks, like everything Clinton!

P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

Unprecedented “media coup d’etat” against Trump

As the readers of Babalu may remember, I was not a fan of Donald Trump in the primaries.   I was hoping for a governor, from Gov Bush of Florida to Gov Walker of Wisconsin to Gov Kasich of Ohio to our own Gov Perry of Texas.    Later, I voted for Senator Rubio in Texas because I saw him as the one most electable candidate after so many had dropped out.

My point is that I am not a Trump fan.    Nevertheless, Mr Trump is correct about the way that the media is treating his campaign.

Some of you may have heard about Barry Casselman’s post: A Media Coup D’Etat?

It was mentioned by Newt Gingrich at Fox News and ABC News

It is something that we should all read and here it is:

What we are now witnessing in the 2016 U.S. presidentialelection is an unprecedented media coup d’etat as many ofthe combined media forces (but not all of its members) are attempting to determine the next president before the voting takes place.

I want to make clear that I have not endorsed either HillaryClinton or Donald Trump, and that I have criticized each ofthem on occasions when I thought it was fair and appropriate.I found Mr. Trump’s  recently released video tape comments to be crude and unacceptable, and I found some of Mrs. Clinton’s comments in the release of texts from her speeches to be inappropriate and seriously wrong-headed.

Those are only my opinions, and I know they are not shared in many cases by partisans of each candidate. Nonetheless, I don’t feel it is my job or prerogative to tell my readers how to vote in this election.

Unfortunately, many newspapers, magazines, major and cableTV and radio networks are  choosing to take part in an attemptto influence the outcome of the election way beyond what Ithink are the acceptable standards of the media’s role in apresidential election. To be fair, it is not only the liberal media,but some in the conservative media as well who have joinedinto this endeavor.

This has taken the forms of days and weeks of one-sidedpress coverage (I distinguish that from editorial opinion), hoursof relentless and repetitious broadcasts of the most salacious material about Mr. Trump while downplaying equally serious material from Mrs, Clinton’s hitherto unpublished speeches and e-mails, obviously biased moderators of the TV debates so far, and generally one-sided coverage of the campaign itselfonce the primary/caucus season was concluded, Before that,the media clearly overplayed its coverage of Mr. Trump, and did so mostly uncritically, giving him an unfair advantage against his Republican nomination opponents.

I make a distinction between opinion writing and reportingjournalism. It is understood that some are writing with a partisan point of view. My attention here is directed to thosewho presume to be addressing their readers and audienceswithout unfair bias.

Media bias is nothing new. Polling of reporters show that anoverwhelming majority of them are liberals and Democrats. (Decades ago, it should be noted, most in the media were conservatives and Republicans.) Balanced coverage is perhaps an unrealistic expectation, but the behavior of so many mediainstitutions in 2016 goes beyond mere bias. The front page is not the editorial page. No wonder all polls of public attitudes show trust in the media to be so low.

It is understandable that much of Donald Trump’s manner, andmany of his words, turn off media and establishment elites inboth parties. It is fair to criticize him for his lapses. But HillaryClinton also speaks controversially and has made egregiousmistakes. To try to pretend that she does not have equally lowcredibility is unjustifiable.
Fortunately, the final say in an election rests with the voters.Donald Trump might well lose on November 8 because he wasnot able to persuade enough voters that he should be president.Perhaps he will make a comeback. It is not up to the media, however, to try to predetermine that result by bullying the public into their own way of thinking.
For whatever reason history has presented the Americanelectorate with two such flawed nominees, it is up to the votersto sort this dilemma out on their own.

In the interest of full disclosure, Barry has been on my show often.   He joined me last week to discuss the presidential race and this post.    Listen here!

P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

Why Trade With China And Not With Communist Cuba?

mai-tai

Daniel Ruth of the Tampa Bay Times is puzzled with the fact that Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn is enjoying mai tais on a goodwill/economic development trip with China, while turning his back on Communist Cuba where he could be raising Mojitos and smoking Cohiba cigars. (See http://www.tampabay.com/opinion/columns/ruth-tampa-mayor-courts-china-stiff-arms-cuba/2295156). While the argument seems logical at first glance, it is more complicated when delving deep into the facts.

Every politician is worried about one thing only – getting elected and re-elected. Mayor Buckhorn must be looking at the number of Cubans and Chinese in the Tampa area before taking a stand on the foreign policy that he will embrace. According to data from the 2000 Census, there were 14,674 (4.8%) Cubans versus 724 (0.24%) Chinese in Tampa. Moreover, Florida has a U.S. Senator in Marco Rubio who supports taking a hard-line in the U.S. relations with Communist Cuba. Thus, it seems a safer bet for Mayor Buckhorn to side with the conservative, Cuban community in Tampa.

There are good reasons to trade more openly with China than with Communist Cuba. For starters, it comes down to dollars and cents. The Cuban economy cannot be compared with the Chinese economy where China has become the U.S.’s second-biggest trading partner. China’s market economy has been growing since the mid-1980s – promoting faster market growth and expanding the personal freedom of millions of Chinese. In comparison, the Castro regime has not been willing to liberalize the economy and create a free market economy. Free enterprise continues to be highly restricted, while foreign investors are forced to conduct business with the Castro’s regime.

There are other valid reasons for the U.S. policy on Cuba. Cuban officials have granted “political asylum” to several U.S. criminals like Joanne Chesimard who was convicted of killing a New Jersey state trooper. Moreover, the Cuban Government still has not compensated the $7 billion in today’s dollars it owes to U.S. companies and U.S. citizens for confiscating their properties.

I would hope that the U.S. Government looks after the well-being of its citizens first.

How To Tell The Difference Between The Donald and Crooked Hillary

at-last-squirrel

I’m sure that you are overwhelmed lately with messages from friends regarding their inability of picking a candidate to vote for in the 2016 presidential election. Even the past suggestion of picking the lesser of the two evils does not seem to work in 2016.

Well, no more! It is not enough to wait until the Sept. 26th debate to make up one’s mind. The best way to tell the two candidates apart is by clicking on: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CEQuDyuQFKE