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July 7, 2023

How can we all be so connected, and our government be so disconnected?

One of the benefits of living in the 21st century is that thanks to jet travel and the Internet, I constantly talk to Americans from every state and every walk of life. And believe me, they are not shy about sharing their opinions. It gives me a perspective that I wish more of our politicians and media people inside the Beltway Bubble could experience.

According to a recent Pew Research survey, 65% of journalists think the news media is doing a good job of covering the important stories of the day, while only 35% of the public agree.

If I had to explain that yawning gap between the media’s public approval and its self-approval in one world , it would be “disconnection” (although I would accept “narcissism.”) I don’t think there’s ever been a time when the media was so out of touch with the people they’re supposed to be serving. You’d think the shock they experienced on Election night 2016 would’ve caused them to reflect a bit and make some changes, but they only doubled down on the demonizing of people they never talk to.

They apparently really believed in 2016 that when voters demanded “change,” they wanted bigger deficits and a bloated, more powerful regulatory state. Trust me, based on what they told me, they did not. And they didn’t think they were getting that when they voted for Biden, either. They’re so angry now not only because Biden’s policies are making their lives so much harder but because many believe they were the victims of a massive bait-and-switch con.

If you ask most Americans what they want from government, it’s not to have every aspect of their lives regulated and “transformed,” including those that worked a lot better before the government “improved” them. They don’t want 2,000-page bills nobody’s read, or bureaucrats telling them which doctor they can see or how much money they’re allowed to make. The list of what most Americans say they want from government is actually pretty short: national defense, secure borders, safe streets; smooth highways; health care for veterans, seniors, poor children, the disabled (all those who genuinely can’t help themselves); good schools, firefighters and (yes) police – now more than ever.  And it would be nice if the trash were picked up on time. That’s about it.

Yet somehow, the government finds so many ways to meddle in our lives that federal, state and local government spending combined now equals about 44% of America’s entire gross domestic product. And in some big cities, they don’t pick up the garbage at all. They just let people live in it.

In poll after poll, despite claims that socialism is on the rise, most Americans say they want less government and less spending. Even those who say they want government handouts like “Medicare For All” abruptly change their tunes when told what it will do to their tax bills and quality of services. They don’t give a hoot what the talking heads or the endlessly-surprised economists or the “too-big-to-fail” Wall Street failures say: they want government out of their lives, out of their wallets and out of their way.

Sadly, whenever political candidates support that philosophy, their opponents and the media paint them as cold-hearted and uncaring. Compassion has been redefined as the willingness to spend limitless amounts of other people’s money. The media also devote almost no time to examining political philosophies and a lot of time to gotcha games, gaffes, fake news and who’s ahead in the horse race.

But the horse is now out of the barn. For eight years, Americans experienced firsthand the results of so-called “progressive” policies. Government out of control, a health care boondoggle two-thirds of us didn’t want, and the economy still struggling long after it should’ve roared back.

The Election of 2016 was not a surprise to me. I predicted it months in advance because, unlike so many people who claim to represent or report on the American people, I actually talk to – and more importantly, listen to - people. Things were turning around quite well before a pandemic artificially shut down the economy and people let the media bamboozle them into blaming Trump and thinking they’d be bringing back moderation and “normality” if they elected Biden.

Now, they find themselves stuck with a combination of Obama and Jimmy Carter times 10. This isn’t what they voted for, but they’re getting it good and hard.

I predict that, despite the media’s best efforts to bamboozle us, politicians who try to sell Americans on socialistic, big government policies will eventually fail, for the same reason that a used car salesman has a hard time selling a lemon to the same customer twice. I think those politicians know it, too; hence their desperation to take over elections so they can control the results, and to rig the government through schemes like eliminating the Senate filibuster and the Electoral College and stacking the Supreme Court. They claim to be protecting “our democracy” while trying to silence and neuter all political opposition. They have to kill democracy to save it.

I also predict that politicians who were elected on a promise not to “fundamentally transform” America will remain in office only as long as they remember that Americans did not elect them to turn the United States into Venezuela.

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Comments 1-10 of 28

  • JoAnne Fletcher

    10/13/2023 02:29 PM

    You hit it on the head. Our country is going down into construction. We need to get our country out of debt and get this so called bitcoin and other made-up money ideas out of our country. What a joke. Those who invested into it deserved to lose. Our country started going to pot as far as I have seen in the last 30 years. It is hard to believe anyone from any media, those who call themselves traders or investors. It's a shame how being truthful has gone out the window.

  • Amelia Little

    07/16/2023 04:04 PM

    There are still those (in msm especially but also posters who only watch msm) who refuse to recognize what we had under President Trump. I did not agree with him absolutely 100% (like to name snake-in-the-grass wray to replace comey) but he did so much to support America--bringing jobs back to the US, energy independency, etc. And, hopefully would have shaved many unnecessary agenies from the government--and prevented heads of agencies from making laws--as in, recommendations have to be sent to Congress to make their wishes law (if they were for the good of the people, not for the pocketbooks of politicians.) I'm not sure how well President Trump would fare this time around--considering the number of RINO's in congress--many who are out for themselves and will do anything to thwart anything President Trump would try to do. However, I'm not sure exactly who on the docket would be able to accomplish much. God forbid anyone is crazy enough to let christy past the starting gun of a run.

  • william paul appelt

    07/08/2023 03:50 PM

    I really enjoyed your commentary.
    Like you, I came from a that time in our country. Born and raised in upstate New York, in the middle of nowhere, way far away from the big or smaller cities. My parents married from suburban families and bought a run down dairy farm. Fixed everything so that we had running water, electricity and other basics for the 5 of us and them to survive on. My Mom, a gardener and artist, tended a crop of vegetables and sold creative crafts to help. My Dad, the farmer with a degree from Alfred U. applied his skills from on the job construction work and book learning from college, was the one who nursed the cows into production, applied the reclamation of farmland into fertile field and even maintained a small forest by cleaning up trees that provided wood for two potbelly stoves for those very cold winters. The five of us (3 girls and two boys) look back in wonder how it happened. Just plain hard work and no nonsense but happy times to remember. Their memories were the same depression and war years. Mom and her Dad worked a victory garden in the heart of Brooklyn. My Dad served in the Navy, far from the fight but followed for 3+ years on a destroyer until the surrender. Not much action but heard too much Ray Acuff, no thanks to the Southern boys tossing overboard any other music to play on the record player. 3 boring years of endless ocean while in the quartermaster corps as a signalman. His German lineage probably put him where he could be isolated and watched even though he was 100% American born! After selling the farm, Mom & Dad moved to Arizona to "start over", built a house ground up and finished their lives there. In the town of Portal, they had the mountains behind them (Geronimo was famous there) and peace with the neighbors. Now that place is probably over run by illegals, being an hours drive from Douglas on the border.
    The point is, yes so much has changed and here we are. Yes, we can change it back if only WE all wake up together!
    So, Governor, keep talking and tell Sarah to keep fighting and let her kids show us how it is done (beautiful artwork).
    Sincerely, Bill & Lynda Appelt

  • Mark Hannah

    07/08/2023 07:52 AM

    We need to pass three Amendments to stop the federal overreach.
    1. Clarify what was intended by “Congress shall have power…To regulate commerce… and among the several States” This power was intended to ensure that States exchanged goods and services without prejudice toward other States, that’s all. Not dictating what types of vehicles we drive, stoves we own, light bulbs we can sell, on and on and on.
    2. Clarify the intent of the so called “necessary and proper” clause, which states “Congress shall have power…To make all laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into execution the foregoing powers, and all other powers vested by this Constitution in the government of the United States, or in any department or officer thereof.” This clearly only includes laws promulgated to support the enumerated powers within the U.S. Constitution and none of these aforementioned powers can be construed to give the feds any power to create any law regulating health care, the emissions of vehicles or power production, whether roads are racist, abortion, etc. Furthermore, the 10th Amendment caps federal powers as those enumerated in the Constitution as follows: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”
    3. Tie the federal budget directly to the GDP by mandating that the feds only get 3% of what is purchased.
    And we need the Convention of States to include these Amendments in their mandate.

  • Sandra Burdick

    07/07/2023 07:33 PM

    I'm 1000% in agreement. When I know something is coming up for a vote I almost always let Senators Cruz and Cornyn know my feelings. That also includes TX Reps and Senators, also Governor Abbott.

  • holger+and+sondra latt

    07/07/2023 07:16 PM

    Nothing new. the media has been selling the American people a bill of goods since I can remember and that was a long time. Since the 1960's while in HS.

  • Steven Lechtenberg

    07/07/2023 06:38 PM

    Another excellent read Governor. But the damage is already done. The next election will not change the course the country is on. This year our government will spend about 600 billion dollars servicing all this debt they are accumulating to supposedly SAVE OUR DEMOCRACY. By 2027, 2028 they will be spending close to a TRILLION DOLLARS to service all of the accumulated debt trying to save OUR DEMOCRACY. The entrenched bureaucrats, the swamp dwellers, the bubble dwellers, our elected royalty will turn to us and put the blame on us for not being more subservient to them. The dollar will be worthless as the printing presses will be burned up turning dollars to try and cover the debt they accumulated. The disturbing part is, they will go on with their shielded lives living in the Washington DC bubble and us citizens will suffer the consequences of their failed governance. Just wait and see, no matter who wins in 2024 the damage is already done and a collapsed economy along with a dismissed part in the world coupled with mass suffering and a decaying society will finally set the stage for a comeback, a slow comeback, but with a wiser population and a restricted government to finally once again serve the people, the way our founders intended it to be

  • Paul Kern

    07/07/2023 04:30 PM

    It is a bleak world like CS Lewis portrayed in his Chronicles of Narnia. The faithful few backed by Aslan(Christ) destroyed the wicked witch and her minions control. We need the Living God and His remaining few to stand tall and unwavering, despite the odds. A massive deception has put many, including the Church Pharisees to sleep. A massive housekeeping is needed. Light overcomes darkness.

  • JC Holland

    07/07/2023 02:39 PM

    Governor: The media is not out of touch to reality and there is no disconnect. They are doing exactly what they are told to do by the socialist democrats in charge.

  • Jim Greer

    07/07/2023 02:25 PM

    I couldn’t possibly even guess how many times l’ve heard or read the phrase “voted for Biden” nor do l know how many actually voted for him. One thing l can tell you with absolute certainty is that there were a WHOLE LOT more who simply voted against Donald Trump rather than for Joe Biden!!