By Paul K. Schwartz @PKSpaul
You all know what a “bleacher bum” is, right? A bleacher bum is the rather vociferous fan sitting in the cheap seats at Yankee Stadium who heckles relentlessly both the opposition outfielders as well as the home team outfielders. He, or she, fires off insult after insult at Mickey Mantle for striking out in a clutch situation or at Bernie Williams for not throwing out a runner at third or at Babe Ruth for being overweight or any Boston Red Sox player for – well, being a Boston Red Sox player.
The bleacher bum sits back in his seat and takes in the entire game and then shares his expertise with the target of his or her analysis of that player’s skills or lack thereof.
What doesn’t ordinarily happens is for that “fan” to be provided with the opportunity to exchange places with the professional player to exhibit before the viewing audience his own “baseball” skill set. What doesn’t happen is for that “fan” to be provided with the opportunity to put his money where his rather loud mouth is.
Well, it may never happen in professional baseball but it certainly did happen in politics with the election of our current president, Donald J. Trump, the epitome of the “bleacher bum” who was given an opportunity to put his money where his rather loud mouth is.
Like the “bleacher bum” at Yankee Stadium, Trump had spent most of his “adult” years, and I do use the term “adult” quite loosely when it comes to Trump, attacking the previous occupants of the White House. He actually quite successfully used his fake attacks on President Barack Obama, especially his so-called “birtherism” controversy, to develop his racist, misogynist, xenophobic following which somehow and quite sadly placed him in the White House.
As with the “bleacher bum” who does not possess the skill set needed to successfully play professional baseball, Trump has demonstrated during his two years in office that he, too, possesses neither the skill set nor the experience to successfully fill his role as president.
What makes this situation even more dire is that he also lacks the motivation to do the necessary work to learn while on the job. Rather, he relies completely on a delusional view of his own understanding of how government works and how serious issues need to be addressed and resolved.
No, Mr. President, you do not prevent massive California forest fires by “raking” the forests. No, Mr. President, the scientists know more about the existence of climate change and the global warming it creates than you do. Listening is a critical skill requisite to being president. Oh, and by the way, Mr. President, just because it gets cold or snows does not mean that global warming is a hoax. Weather, Mr. President, and climate are not the same thing.
As well, Mr. President, when a federal judge rules against your actions regarding asylum, that judge is not playing politics and attempting to create policy. Rather, that judge might just be trying to interpret existing law, something which you do not think applies to you.
On the topic of healthcare, Mr. President, eliminating the individual mandate also eliminates a funding source to keep healthcare premiums down and cover pre-existing conditions. That, Mr. President, is how insurance works. Just as drivers with good driving records are required to have automobile insurance and expand the pool of insured to cover those with accidents, so too do individuals who are young and healthy need to contribute to the insurance pool to keep premiums down for all including those with pre-existing conditions.
As for the Federal Reserve, no, Mr. President, your “gut” is not more reliable than the “brains” of experts in the field.
Your most blatant misunderstanding of a critical issue very well may be the issue of tariffs. You recently stated that “billions are pouring in to the U.S. coffers” from tariffs on China. While that statement may be technically true, you apparently are under the misunderstanding that it is China who is paying that increased revenue into the U.S. coffers. It is not.
The tariff is paid for by the importer of record of the imported merchandise into the United States and is paid to Customs at time of release of that merchandise into the commerce of this country. The importer then passes that cost of doing business onto the retailer who then passes it on to the consumer, that is, the American public. In other words that tariff becomes the financial burden of the American consumer, including your base.
Now, certainly the increased price of the Chinese goods is not beneficial to the Chinese economy just as increased Chinese tariffs on American-produced products entered into China are not good for American businesses or the U.S. economy. That is why trade wars are never good strategically. However, regardless of impact, let it be clear that it is the American consumer who is filling the U.S. coffers as a result of the increased tariffs.
I could go on as the list of absurd claims and misunderstandings is added to on a daily, if not hourly, basis, but I’ll stop here and simply say this: Mr. President, it is time to go back to the 5th Avenue bleachers and expose your ignorance from there and not 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.