Happy Valentine’s Day! All you men who are panicking at those words had better get to buying flowers, candy and cards and making dinner reservations. Don’t worry, I’ll be here when you get back. For the rest of you, here’s an interesting article about the origins of Valentine’s Day (there really was a Saint Valentine, who lived around 270 A.D.) and some of the famous holiday traditions. There are also some useful tips, like the most common mistake people make when buying flowers, and the three easiest dishes to make at home to impress your Valentine. And I'll toss in one of my own: don't make those dinner reservations at McDonald's.
Also, if you’re looking for a perfect photo to share with your Valentine on social media, check out these two swans at a rescue center in England, forming a heart shape with their long, graceful necks.
After a few days of public name-calling, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo actually met with President Trump on Thursday to talk about the Administration’s decision to remove New Yorkers from Global Entry and several other Trusted Traveler Programs that let people avoid long lines when returning from abroad.
Cuomo has been railing that it was political retribution and trying to paint it as a personal attack by Trump on New York with nefarious racist intentions. In fact, it was done because the databases to insure travelers are allowed in the US legally and don’t have criminal records are based on state drivers’ license records – and New York recently started giving licenses to undocumented immigrants and blocking the feds from seeing their state motor vehicle database with the necessary background information.
In short, the state expects federal agencies entrusted with guarding national security to have as little regard for who someone is and whether they’re in America legally or not as New York liberal Democrats do.
Not unexpectedly, there were no breakthroughs in the meeting, although Cuomo signaled a willingness to compromise a little by restoring federal access to driving records “on a limited basis.” Which is useless, not just because it’s limited but because having a New York drivers’ licenses will still be no guarantee that someone has the legal right to be in America at all. And he’s still vowing that “If they think they're going to extort New York into giving them a database of undocumented people, they're wrong. I will never do that."
It’s a welcome development to see Cuomo at least putting aside the overheated rhetoric for an hour and having a White House meeting with Trump “as if he’s the President.” But if he expects Trump to compromise on national security, I think he’s barking up the wrong tree. Gov. Cuomo needs to realize that as chief executive of his state, it’s his sworn duty to faithfully execute the laws, not to aid and abet people who violate them. His government’s indulgence for lawbreakers is already causing a spike in crime in New York, and President Trump is absolutely correct to hold firm in refusing to allow the contagion to spread to the federal level.
It's too bad all New Yorkers have to pay for the stubbornness and bad policies of their politicians. But if you elect people who refuse to take their jobs seriously and respect federal law, then go stand in the back of the line.
Considering that Joe Biden’s hopes for staying alive in the Presidential race rest on turning out black voters for him in South Carolina, I can’t help thinking that his strategy for appealing to them wasn’t very well thought out. He’s running an ad that’s mostly positive until it suddenly takes a negative turn and tries to paint President Trump as a racist and America as a nation where black people are struggling to survive. He also repeats the same quote from the Rev. James Cleveland (“I ain’t no ways tired”) that Hillary Clinton famously used in 2007 and that caused her to be roundly mocked and accused of racist pandering (as Joe now is, by Deroy Murdock.)
And who thought it was a good idea to include that photo of the so-called “cages” at the border? I know Democrats love to blame Trump for those (actually, they are detention facilities, not “cages”), but did nobody on Joe’s staff think anyone would point out the fact that they were actually built under the Obama/Biden Administration?
If Biden wants to appeal to black voters, I’d think the last thing he’d want to do is ask them to think about how things are going for them now (wages rising, black and black youth unemployment and black poverty rates all at record lows) and vote to go back to the way things were when Obama was President. Here’s a thought: try appealing to black voters by telling them how he’s going to improve things for Americans of all races, instead of trying to frighten them by saying the other guy is a racist and wants to “put y’all back in chains” (one of his previous unfortunately quotes.) Except that would require policies that would actually improve on what’s already working. This is why we get demagoguery, pandering and race-baiting: because that’s easy and actually improving people’s lives is hard.
California recently passed a law called AB5 that its “progressive” sponsors say is designed to help contract workers. But as Ronald Reagan once pointed out, one of the three biggest lies ever is, “I’m from the government, and I’m here to help you.” By mandating union-style work conditions for everyone, they’re forcing contract workers out of business all over the state, devastating everyone from Uber drivers to artists and musicians to work-at-home moms and freelance writers.
But there could be a silver lining. For years, Californians have been reflexively voting for leftist politicians, who have been driving the Golden State into the ground and driving middle class business owners to move to other states. But independent and artistic types just kept on electing far-left Democrats, blind to the destruction they’re causing because they never connected all the homeless people, filth, crime, blackouts, wildfires, lack of affordable housing, etc., to the insane policies of the people they kept electing.
But now, as Erica Sandberg at City Journal reports, these independent contract types are suddenly having a Damascus Road experience. They’ve had the heavy boot of dumb leftist government come down on them, and they’re getting “woke” in a whole new way. AB5 is such a terrible, awful, no good, very bad law that’s destroying so many people’s livelihoods that these reliably kneejerk Democratic voters are suddenly turning into Independents, Republicans and Libertarians in droves.
Could AB5 possibly be the fuse that finally starts a revolution to turn California red? That might be too much to hope for, but it’s an exciting thought. In the meantime, as you’re still pondering who to vote for in the November elections for Congress and the White House, bear this in mind: Democrats in the House are already pushing a national version of AB5, to “help you”… into the poor house.