The Iowa caucus debacle came on top of the Trump impeachment, another low-turnout event with the public. People began telling reporters that the three-year death struggle between Democrats and President Trump wasn’t their idea of Washington’s purpose.
So what, other than hunting Donald Trump, does the Democratic Party stand for?
A recurring argument of this column is that in the U.S. and Europe, the presumed efficiency of governments has been worn down by the programs and responsibilities they’ve created for themselves, some with good intentions. By now, it’s just too much.
During the Depression, Franklin Roosevelt struck a defining bargain with the public: Cede to the government expanded powers over the details of American life, and government will administer it efficiently. For the public, giving government the power to regulate and rule was supposed to be a net plus.
The bargain behind Bernie Sanders’s Medicare for All, funded by new taxes on the middle class, is that it too will be a net plus. Come Election Day in November, will 50% of the electorate actually believe Democrats today could competently administer a national health-care system in the U.S.?
Mr. Sanders, who filed as a Democrat for this election, isn’t that much of an outlier. All his rivals, including the “moderates,” are proposing more additions to the already massive government labyrinth they’ve built for decades.
But in those places where the modern Democratic Party is in charge, they often govern badly or incompetently on a grand scale.
Detroit, from coast to coast.
Characteristically of the left, Bloomberg is being branded as a racist for actions he took as mayor that helpedblack residents of New York, specifically, his continuation of the tough-on-crime policies that began under former Mayor Rudy Giuliani and his police commissioner William Bratton. Those policies included proactive measures intended to deter street crime of the type that had turned much of the city into a dystopian war zone. One of those measures, the most controversial of them, came to be known as stop-and-frisk.
The very term has been branded as racist based on the fact that the number of blacks and Hispanics stopped and frisked by police in New York was disproportionate to their share of the population. Gentle readers, when you see stop and arrest rates for this or that ethnic group compared with that group’s share of the overall population, you know you are being hoodwinked. It is the criminal offender pool that must be compared to the stop and arrest rates, and in New York City — as is the case in any other city you can name — it is blacks and Hispanics who commit the vast majority of violent crime.
In 2018, blacks were 72.6 percent of the shooting suspects in New York City, and Hispanics were 24.1 percent (see page 12 of this NYPD report). Blacks and Hispanics were also 73.3 and 22.4 percent of the city’s shooting victims, respectively, so it should be beyond saying (but sadly isn’t) that curtailing shooting incidents will be a balm to those communities. Arrests for firearm possession closely mirrored these statistics (see page 13 of the same report), so it’s clear that, by the benchmark that matters, there is no racial disproportion among the arrestees.
Bloomberg, fearful of the racist label sticking despite its lack of a factual basis, has apologized for stop-and-frisk, in essence saying he regrets the tactic that brought about crime reductions few thought were possible. The NYPD investigated 2,262 murders in 1990; in 2019 the number was 319. This decrease would not have been possible without the proactive measures, stop-and-frisk chief among them, initiated by leaders unafraid of political backlash.
TURNING VIRGINIA INTO CALIFORNIA, PART II: At Bacon’s Rebellion, Hans Bader points out that the Old Dominion has passed the most extreme anti-discrimination statute in the South (the bill simply awaits reconciliation between the House and Senate versions):
For example, the Virginia Values Act contains no protections against groundless or unreasonable lawsuits: It doesn’t allow employers to obtain their attorneys fees when such lawsuits are brought to shake down an employer over a meritless claim…Another flaw of the Virginia Values Act is that it provides for unlimited punitive damages, “without limitation otherwise imposed by law.” This is troubling, because punitive damages are often imposed in a random, unpredictable, and arbitrary way, and limitations imposed by law are appropriate to constrain such abuses and provide greater consistency.
Virginia is fast becoming a very bad place to do business. When Northern Virginia turned blue, it turned deep blue. It is dragging the rest of the state with it to the depths.
FEEL THE BERN: Panicked Democrats Fear Bernie Could Cost Them the House.