Long ago when I studied advertising at the Federal Trade Commission, I learned that consumers will believe extravagant praise of an item whether that praise is from a biased or unbiased source. Politicians have learned this in a big way this year.
Long ago, candidates wanted praise from senators and secretaries of defense.
Now, they get it from their children and, amazingly, people believe it.
Recently, my wife and I listened to a replay of Trump’s acceptance speech. I got a jolt. It could have been given by Richard M. Nixon in 1968. Basically, Trump said that Americans were sick and tired of being pushed around by criminals.
The name of the game now is “law and order.” We’re going to back up the cops, not run them down the way Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton have been doing. We’re going to make our cities safe.
I kept thinking, How are we going to do that? We already have by far the largest number of prisoners of any nation on earth. We already have tough sentencing laws.
What will we do different? Trump said he was going to build a wall and keep out all illegals so they can’t murder law-abiding Americans. It makes total sense to me, but how will he do it?
There are already about 12 million illegal immigrants in America. What do we do with the jobs they do? Anyway, a very tiny percentage of homicides against American citizens are done by illegals. Any is too many, but how will he deal with 12 million people here illegally?
I am all for being as tough as possible on criminal illegals. But deporting 12 million people? Is that possible?
Trump says wages have not risen in the past 10 years; in fact, they have fallen. I’m not sure that’s true if we count fringe benefits, but even if it is, how will he improve the situation? Most of the drop occurred in the wake of the crisis of 2007-2008. That was caused entirely by GOP policy mistakes.
President Obama has spent like a madman trying to fix things, making an eventual Treasury default a certainty. But even roughly $10 trillion of deficits have not brought complete recovery. What will Trump do differently? Don’t we need some details?
Donald Trump, without one single minute of foreign policy or defense experience, is going to defeat ISIS and al-Qaida, supposedly mostly by calling them what they are: Islamic terrorists. How will that help beat ISIS? They like being known as Islamic terrorists. We are not going to shame them into disappearing. I admire Trump’s frankness, but it’s going to take more than that to liquidate those killers, who can draw upon a limitless supply of insane murderers.
Obviously, I could go on: How will he create more opportunity for poor, fatherless black young men? He never says. How will he lower taxes and lower the deficit? It’s been tried and it doesn’t work. How will he cut taxes and the deficit and spend more on defense? It cannot be done. It’s astonishing to me that anyone believes politicians on the stump at all.
Donald Trump has flaws. But he’s Thomas Jefferson compared with his opponent. There’s real trouble.
Ben Stein is a writer, actor, and lawyer who served as a speechwriter in the Nixon administration as the Watergate scandal unfolded. He began his unlikely road to stardom when director John Hughes as the numbingly dull economics teacher in the urban comedy, "Ferris Bueller's Day Off." Read more more reports from Ben Stein - Click Here Now.
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