Ad Hominem vs. Ad Rem (Hairdo or Country)

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Recently, I had a discussion with a business friend about the future of Donald Trump. The man is a religious conservative Trump supporter, yet critical of him. “What do you think, will become of him?” my friend asked. I replied, “I think he will be reelected.” – “Well, now” the friend objected, “I would not be so sure of that. I voted for Trump but there are some things about the man that I dislike and resent and if he keeps doing those things, I am not sure I will be voting for him again.” Naturally, I now wanted to know what he objected against. He explained that he resents Trump’s use of cusswords and his occasional habit of arguing ad hominem instead of ad rem. He meant that he dislikes Trump’s style of attacking his opponents not just on the issues abut also on their personalities, poking fun of them and often ridiculing them. And as a good Christian my friend resents the use of cusswords.

I argued that Trump has done a lot of good for this country and that he attempted to cure many ills inflicted upon us by leftist and globalist ideologues. Politics, I said, is a pig-wrestling event and if you wrestle with pigs you may get dirty. And what is more important – that a president accomplishes the right things for his country or that he speaks in mild-mannered and polished ways while inflicting disaster upon his country – like Mr. Obama, for example? I reminded him to consider how Trump was treated by his political opponents. Two impeachment attempts, the freely invented Russian Collusion hoax, investigation after investigation, false accusation after false accusation. The entire deep-state government was weaponized against him, never mind the Constitution or the rule of law. Falsehood after falsehood. And then you condemn the man if he uses a cussword? Seems to me like accusing a rabbit of running against the one-way street while trying to escape a wolfpack.

In commemoration of my conversation with my friend I would like here to list some of Mr. Trump’s main accomplishments.

  • Trump appointed two Supreme Court justices, 53 federal appellate judges, and 146 District Court judges as well as two judges for the Court of International Trade, who have been confirmed by the Senate.
  • Trump’s tax cuts of 2017 and his canceling of excessive government regulations on businesses gave a tremendous boost to the American economy. An estimated 25,000 pages of regulations were canceled, resulting in savings of approx. $3,100 per household per year. Another result of Trump tax cuts combined with deregulation has been the addition of thousands of new jobs pushing pre-Corona unemployment to the lowest point in 50 years, and unemployment among African-American and Hispanic workers to the lowest level it has ever been in history.
  • Trump was the first president ever to personally attend the pro-life March for Life in Washington, D.C. on January 24, 2020. He reduced funding for Planned Parenthood and protected healthcare workers who refused, based on their religious faith, to participate in abortion or assisted suicide.
  • Trump expanded educational freedom by appointing Betsy DeVos, one of America’s leading advocates for greater school choice, to be Secretary of Education, resulting in rising support for charter schools, taxpayer-funded vouchers, and tax credits for private-school vouchers.
  • Trump has reaffirmed our commitment to support and defend Israel. He moved the United States Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. He recognized the Golan Heights as part of Israel.
  • Trump mediated an agreement between Israel and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to establish full diplomatic relations between the two countries, including the establishment of permanent embassies and the beginning of direct airline flights between the two countries. (John Kerry “It can’t be done.”)
  • Trump built over 400 miles of efficient border wall and established a measure of security and stability again at our southern border thus stemming the uncontrolled influx of illegal immigrants, drug and child traffickers, organized criminals, terrorists, and sick people. Just compare this to what the southern border looks like after two years of Biden.
  • Trump worked tirelessly to defend religious freedom, and his Justice Department has defended religious freedom in numerous court cases, such as supporting the case of Colorado cake designer Jack Phillips at the Supreme Court and the right of faith-based organizations not to be required to provide access to abortion performers through their health care plans. He overturned the Obamacare HHS regulation that had forced them to do so.
  • Trump withdrew from the Paris “Climate Accord”, because he saw the whole climate hysteria as what it is: a ruse of the globalists to tear down the United States and to destroy the concept of individual liberty and because it would have dramatically increased US energy cost. Biden joined again and just look at your energy cost!
  • Trump approved the Keystone pipeline, the Dakota access pipeline, and oil production from the Alaska National Wildlife Refuge, a vast uninhabited region that could produce up to 20 percent of our total petroleum needs. His administration has also granted more permits for the mining of oil, gas, and coal from federal lands. The result has been lower energy prices and U.S. energy autarky so that we became a leading exporter rather than a net importer of energy. We have more fossil fuel than the rest of the world combined, yet under Biden we are bleeding at the gas pump and must beg our political rivals for oil.
  • Trump brought hundreds of American production companies back to the USA by normalizing our corporate taxes and levying import taxes on foreign imports, in particular Chinese imports.
  • Trump’s decision to abandon the “waterways of the U.S.” policy rightfully returned control of water on private lands to the owners of those lands, rather than the federal government seizing control over nearly all waterways in the United States, a policy that hindered farmers, ranchers, and developers.
  • Trump halted the Obama-imposed harsh annual increases in projected average miles per gallon required in new cars every year. This decision lead to more consumer choice and less expensive and safer cars, which is much better than the Democrat policy of ever-higher mileage goals, requiring ever-lighter and smaller cars, which means more dangerous cars and less consumer choice. Biden reversed this decision and is now pushing electric cars that will carry you 330 miles after which you have to recharge for an extended period of time – if you can find a charging station.
  • Trump broke ISIS. Under his leadership, U.S. military forces located and killed ISIS founder and terrorist leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and the Iranian terrorist mastermind Qasem Soleimani.
  • Trump insisted that NATO countries start to pay their fair share of defense costs, and most NATO countries responded by increasing their defense budgets.
  • Trump restored many due process guidelines that universities must follow in processing title IX accusations of sexual assault on university campuses.
  • Trump directed the Department of Education to revoke the Obama administration’s guidance letter that had directed schools to allow children who claim to be “transgender” to use the bathrooms, locker rooms, and showers of their choice, and to join sports teams of their choice, even when their choices differed from their biological sex. Of course, Biden reinstated it all.
  • Trump has negotiated new trade agreements with Mexico, Canada, and China, and all of them give more favorable treatment to the United States than the previous treaties did.
  • Trump streamlined environmental reviews for major construction projects. In order to build a new section of highway, a new subway line, or a new gas pipeline, the necessary environmental impact statements took an average of 4.5 years, and many ran for six years or longer.
  • Trump clearly recognized the national sovereignty of the Ukrainian nation and identified the Russian aggression as a war of conquest. He authorized the selling of actual military equipment to Ukraine, including Javelin missiles that were necessary to defend against Russian aggression. Obama had sent blankets.
  • Trump has been the first president to decisively denounce China’s blatant practice of industrial espionage and bullying, stealing of intellectual property, and violating international copyrights.
  • Trump withdrew the U.S. from the Iran nuclear deal, called the Joint Comprehensive Plan for Action, which allowed Iran to build a nuclear bomb within the next few years. Biden reversed this and now the Iranians are very close to having nukes. God help us all.
  • Trump signed the Veterans Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act, which gave the Secretary of Veterans Affairs streamlined authority to fire unproductive employees and to appoint new medical directors at VA hospitals. Biden reversed this all and our Veterans are just as bad off as they were before Trump.
  • Trump signed the First Step Act on December 21, 2018. This law gives judges more flexibility in reducing mandatory sentencing guidelines in individual cases, eliminates the “three strikes” requirement of life imprisonment for some offenses, improves opportunities for academic and vocational education within prisons, provides more support for the successful reentry of released prisoners into society, and requires prisoners to be placed in prisons near their place of primary residence where possible.
  • Trump protected Federal Property from rioters. When understandable protest against the death of George Floyd, a convicted criminal and drug addict, as the result of excessive police force turned into rioting and destruction of historic monuments Trump announced that any destruction of federal statues and monuments would result in fines up to $10,000, and suddenly the attacks on these statues came to an abrupt halt. When rioters threatened to destroy the U.S. courthouse in Portland, and the governor and the mayor were not protecting this federal property, President Trump sent in federal officers to protect it. The courthouse was not destroyed and the slightly over 100 U.S. marshals and DHS officers inside the building were protected until eventually the mayor of Portland sent local and state police to protect the building.

Mr. Trump accomplished all of this against stiff and hostile opposition from the Deep State, the Mainstream Media, the Democratic Party, and even from his own Republican Party (Mitch McConnell etc.).

I would like to say to my friend that I understand it if you do not like Trump’s hairdo or his strange gesturing, or body postures. I also understand that you disapprove of his personal attacks on some of his opponents or that you have no sense for Trump’s somewhat weird sense of humor. But what is more important – that a president accomplishes good things for his country or that he speaks politely and pleasantly? Obama was a smooth talker, but he pretty much wrecked this country.

When Neville Chamberlain met with Adolf Hitler in Hitler’s Mountain retreat in Berchtesgaden in 1938, he was pleasantly surprised by Hitler’s nice manners, good humor, and gracious and jovial behavior as a host. He called him a “jolly good fellow” and believed his promises of “no further territorial demands”. He made the grave mistake of judging the man by his words and demeanor instead of by his deeds. His misjudgment cost the lives of hundreds of millions of humans.

Those who today believe they should not support Trump because of his words, looks, and demeanor may make an even greater mistake, because if Trump won’t become our next president, this country will probably be irreparably damaged and our enemies will feel emboldened to attack us in every whichever way possibly to finish us off – including nuclear war.

I my view, Trump 2024 is our best defense against this doomsday prospect, even if his hairdo is weird, his language is sometimes foul, and his attacks are sometimes ad hominem. Seems to me that not voting for Trump in order to punish him for his language and mannerisms is throwing out the baby with the bath water and, last but not least, such criticism of Trump is exactly the same ad hominem style, which some of his critics criticize him for. As I see it, some conservative Trump critics need to get their priorities straight.

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