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Politicians Have Earned Your Distrust? Whadda mean I trust them!

I'm a big Kessler fan. Great author and astute investor.

Politicians Have Earned Your Distrust

Our leaders care more about putting ‘points on the board’ than doing what’s right.

By Andy Kessler, WSJ

Nov. 21, 2021 1:45 pm ET

Each day government bombards Americans with reasons not to trust it. It has been only 616 days since the Trump administration’s “15 Days to Slow the Spread.” From the Fauci dance—no mask, one mask, double masks—to the airport mess known as the Transportation Security Administration. If it’s OK for travelers under 12 and over 75 to keep their shoes on through airport security, then surely it’s OK for everyone. Americans aren’t stupid. Each time we’re spun or deceived or outright lied to, trust in government melts away.

Case in point: President Biden’s speech at the Port of Baltimore about the recently enacted bipartisan infrastructure plan, in which he said “this bill is going to reduce the cost of goods to consumers.” Spend more, prices go down? Not likely. A few breaths later: “I’m going to create good-paying union jobs—union . . . not $12 an hour, not $15 an hour—$45 an hour and up with good benefits.” And that will somehow reduce the cost of goods to consumers? C’mon, man. Is Sen. Joe Manchin the only one who understands the wage-price spiral? Inflation is “transitory,” we’re told. Uh-huh. Meanwhile, some Californians are pumping $5 gas.

Mr. Biden also claims the $1.75 trillion social-climate-porkfest reconciliation bill—really more than $4 trillion without accounting gimmicks—“costs zero dollars.” The administration must be using that new “equity” math I keep hearing about. A third-grader could see the deception. Any wonder why Mr. Biden has a 41% approval rating?

White House press secretary Jen Psaki declared the chaotic Afghan withdrawal the “largest airlift in U.S. history . . . so no, I would not say that is anything but a success.” That’s like saying the Titanic was a success as the largest lifeboat deployment in history.


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California government becomes less trustworthy by the minute. It lifted most Covid restrictions in June based on 70% of adult Californians receiving at least one vaccine dose, meaning you could go maskless in Trader Joe’s. By August, however, health officials, blaming the Delta variant, reimposed mask mandates in California’s big cities. Then in October, the same health officials said that restrictions will be lifted when 80% are vaccinated. No problem, 80% of adults had gotten jabbed. But wait, the new target is 80% of the entire population, including children under 12, who weren’t eligible for shots. Talk about moving the goal posts.


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Sen. Amy Klobuchar and others are going after Facebook, claiming its products are addictive. Maybe they are. But where is their outrage over other addictive products, especially tax-spewing government-sanctioned ones like cannabis, alcohol and gambling—aka weed, wine and what’s the line? These same social-media scolds also worry about Instagram’s effect on teens and body shaming, but until they outlaw Teen Vogue magazine and Victoria’s Secret ads, you know they aren’t serious.

Former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe used a federal visa program to set up an electric-car venture, GreenTech Automotive, with Hillary Clinton’s brother, and was sued in 2017 by Chinese investors for fraud. Mr. McAuliffe was dismissed from the suit in 2018, but those visa ventures are usually sketchy. Did that disqualify him for public office? Apparently not. Education policy, not candidate character, swung the Virginia governor race.

Others are more subtle. Did you ever wonder why former media darling and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo sent Covid patients back to nursing homes instead of to the Javits Center or the USNS Comfort hospital ship, which President Trump had sent? The Cuomo re-election campaign received more than $1 million from the Greater New York Hospital Association in 2018. Mr. Cuomo then increased Medicaid fees paid to nursing homes and hospitals. When the pandemic hit, the same hospital association requested that nursing homes be compelled to accept patients who had tested positive for Covid-19. Then, as deaths mounted, the Cuomo administration underreported the number.

Voting reform has caused needless boycotts, and Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred was booed in Atlanta during the World Series for moving the All-Star Game out of the city to protest Georgia’s voting reforms. Somehow Voter ID is bad, yet mail-in ballots are good for election integrity? That doesn’t even begin to make sense.

So what is the mindset of these trustbusting politicians? Virginia Democratic Sen. Mark Warner is often listed as a businessman, but he was really a political entrepreneur. His two most successful investments, Nextel and Capital Cellular Corp., wouldn’t have existed without government bandwidth licenses. Yet now he seems to hate Big Tech. Despite heated hearings and debates about antitrust action to break up Facebook and others, few bills have been passed. “It’s frankly nothing short of pathetic,” Mr. Warner said. Based on all the bluster over Big Tech, Mr. Warner added, “it would be a fairly damning commentary on Congress” if lawmakers “didn’t put some points on the board.” Forget about what is right for the economy or for citizens, it’s simply “points on the board.” It’s all about their careers, not yours. Trust me on that.

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