Sunday, July 31, 2016

Pipes On The Battles Against Islamist Terrorism. My Main Motivation for How I Will Vote. If You Do Not See It You Can Read It!

Maybe the 2016 Election is all about Hilllary
                versus Bill. (See 1 below.)

The battle against Islamist terrorists has not actually begun according to Daniel Pipes.  Pipes, unlike Huntington, believes conflicts remain political not civilizational.(See 2 below.)
If you do not see it you can surely read it. (See 3 below)
For those who have some knowledge of what The Founding Fathers intended when they established three independent branches in order to make them, more or less independent and equal, they also wrote structural language that was supposed to result in various checks and balances.

They also understood the effect power of personality might have on each branch.

From time to time one branch gains strength at the cost of another and I submit that , over the years, Congress has allowed itself to become weaker as The Executive Branch gained. However, the Supreme Court , though one of the structurally weaker branches, because it has no army, cannot even raise its own salaries, remains the strongest as long as we wish to remain a nation of laws. Why? Because Jurist's are appointed for life and their willingness to create law rather than faithfully interpret the meaning of The Constitution, can change the direction of our Republic emphatically and lastingly

This reason, alone, motivates me to vote for Trump over all of his and/or Hillary's negatives and/or positives.

When anyone, including members of my own family, tell me they are going to vote for other candidates, ie. Libertarians, Greens etc., I remind them of this fact.

Obama has radically altered the direction of our nation both by his own philosophy and resort to ruling by Executive actions but also through his appointments to the Supreme Court.  The next president will have no less than two and possibly three opportunities to appoint Jurists thereby altering the, so called, ideological balance thus, neutralizing any swing vote effect.

I can think of no more single determining reason to cast my vote for Trump.

1)  Mrs. Clinton v. Mr. Clinton

Bill Clinton’s 1992 Democratic agenda sounded downright Paul Ryanish.

 By William McGurn

When her husband was running for president in 1992, Hillary Clinton appeared by his side on “60 Minutes” to help him rebut claims he’d had a sexual relationship with Gennifer Flowers.

When asked if he “categorically” denied the allegation, Mr. Clinton responded “I’ve said that before.” Just to clarify her own role, Mrs. Clinton added, “I’m not sitting here—some little woman standing by my man like Tammy Wynette.”

Each was fibbing. In a deposition in the Paula Jones case years later, Mr. Clinton admitted that his relationship with Ms. Flowers had been sexual. Mrs. Clinton, meanwhile, would spend the next eight years in full Tammy Wynette mode, standing by her man through all the women and all the lies.

Which makes this year’s convention in the City of Brotherly Love even more of a triumph for Mrs. Clinton. Not only is she the Clinton whose name sits atop the party’s presidential ticket this time, in some ways the entire Democratic convention is a repudiation of all things Bill.

Start with the platform. Now, it’s true that platforms are not binding, but they give a good sense of how parties and candidates see themselves. Notwithstanding the “lock her up” chants from Bernie supporters here in Philly, Mr. Sanders says of the prevailing draft that “we now have the most-progressive platform in the history of the Democratic Party.”

It’s hard to recall these days, but Bill Clinton’s 1992 platform and presidency were once thought to deliver the Democratic Party from precisely this kind of thinking. Back then, Mr. Clinton was the face of the “New Democrat” who aimed to persuade the American people Democrats had changed from the McGovern days and could be trusted on values, the economy and national security.

In 1992, the party of Bill Clinton called business a “noble endeavor.” Its platform sounded downright Paul Ryanish, listing its “first priority” as “broad-based, non-inflationary economic growth and the opportunity that flows from it.” And it declared its opposition to “the adoption of new programs and new spending without new thinking.”

In his administration, Mr. Clinton would work with Republicans to pass welfare reform and repeal the Glass-Steagall provisions forbidding affiliations between banks and securities firms. He would sign the North American Free Trade Agreement. And in his 1996 State of the Union address, Mr. Clinton would declare that “the era of big government is over.”

In 2016, the party of Hillary Clinton has chucked all this overboard, embracing a plethora of new programs and spending. It has come out for “free” college education and a government health-care option. Mrs. Clinton opposes the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the biggest trade deal since Nafta. For this Clinton, the era of big government is back.

Nor is the rejection of Bill Clinton limited to economics. In 1992, when a Washington Post interviewer asked hip-hop artist Sister Souljah about black-on-black violence during that summer’s riots in Los Angeles, she answered that “if black people kill black people every day, why not have a week and kill white people.” At a Rainbow Coalition event sponsored by the Rev. Jesse Jackson, Mr. Clinton likened her to the white supremacist David Duke.

In 2016, by contrast, the Democratic Party of Mrs. Clinton has gone all in with the Black Lives Matter movement. This includes accepting the false idea that black men are being shot because of institutional racism among our men and women in blue.

Ditto for social issues. In his acceptance speech at the 1992 Democratic convention, Mr. Clinton famously said that abortion should be “safe, legal and rare.” In 2016, the party of Mrs. Clinton has thrown out “rare” for the most-extreme position possible: abortion on demand subsidized by the U.S. taxpayer.

Gone too is the call for a more muscular approach to foreign policy, a theme Bill Clinton used to criticize George H.W. Bush as too weak. “I believe our nation has a higher purpose than to coddle dictators and stand aside from the global movement toward democracy,” said Mr. Clinton.

Now, it’s possible that on Russia and NATO, Mrs. Clinton may repeat the weakness argument, given Donald Trump’s refusal to see Russian President Vladimir Putin’s aggression as a threat. But the Middle East is a better indicator of where her party has moved.

In 1992, the party of Bill Clinton chided the Bush administration for not being an “honest broker” and encouraging Arabs to believe the U.S. would deliver “unilateral concessions” from Israel. Though Mrs. Clinton’s allies have beaten back (for now) efforts to be more critical of Israel, the battle is a proxy for the party’s larger distrust of American force and the distancing from traditional U.S. allies that has characterized the two Obama terms.
This is Mrs. Clinton’s moment. So out goes Tammy Wynette, and all that 1992 Bill Clinton talk of getting “two for the price of one.” In the Democratic Party of Hillary Clinton, the left wing is back in charge. And it’s as much a repudiation of her husband as it is of Mr. Trump.

"The Battle against Islamism Has Not Yet Started"

by Ralf Ostner (interviewer) Global Review (Germany)

Global Review: Mr. Pipes, what do you think of Samuel Huntington's book Clash of Civilizations? Are religions the defining moments of culture, despite the Enlightenment and globalization? Where was Huntington right and where wrong?

Daniel Pipes: Huntington made some very major mistakes which have become increasingly evident in the two decades since he aired his thesis. For example, he thought U.S. tensions with Japan in the 1990s resulted from civilizational differences; a decade later, those tensions disappeared, replaced by far more severe problems with Europe, even though the United States and Europe form part of the same civilization. The real divisions, as always, remain political, not civilizational.

GR: Many people say that Islam is not a religion but a reactionary, totalitarian and repressive ideology comparable to fascism and communism; and that Islam cannot be reformed. Other people say that Islamism had nothing to do with religion and Islam. What do you say about relations between Islam and Islamism?

DP: Both these statements are silly. Of course, Islam is one of the major religions of the world; what is there to argue about? Islamism, a modern movement, however, shares much with fascism and communism. Islamism is a form of Islam. Denying this would be akin to saying that the Jesuits are not Christian.

GR: Some experts compare Islam with Confucianism and Hinduism. They note that in the 1950s, Confucian societies were thought unable to develop economically and socially, and that Confucianism was seen as an obstacle to progress; same with Hinduism in India. Today, however, East Asia and India are economic powerhouses and many people perceive Confucianism and Hinduism as drivers of this success story. Could the same happen with Islam, that it will also reform?
DP: Yes, it is possible that Muslim peoples will recover from today's predicament and go on to economic and political success. We have no way of predicting such things. And no civilization or religion stays permanently down.

The Hong Kong skyline: No one any more sees Confucianism as an obstacle to development.
GR: There is a broad spectrum of Islamists. Al-Qaida, the Islamic State, Boko Haram, Al Shabaab, which want to occupy territory by military means and create an ever expanding state. And then the Muslim Brotherhood, the Turkish AK Party and the Iranian Khomeinists. Which of these Islamist groups are the greatest danger for the West and which of these concepts do you think will be the most successful?

DP: I worry the most about the subtle, infiltrating Islamists. When it comes to force, we can easily defeat them. But when it comes to our own institutions – schools, law courts, media, parliaments – we are far less prepared to defend ourselves.

GR: In the Western countries many Islamophobic parties and politicians are on the rise. Do you think this will help the spread of Islamism or will these parties help the counter-jihad? Hillary Clinton said that Trump and his anti-Muslim speeches are the best recruiters for the Islamic State. True?

DP: I do not recognize the term "Islamophobe" and do not know what it means except, in the immortal phrase of Andrew Cummins as a word "created by fascists and used by cowards to manipulate morons."

Your question reverses the sequence of events. Islamist ideology breads Islamist violence, which starts the process and in turn inspires anti-Islamic sentiments. Anti-Islamic views might also inspire more Islamist violence, but that is incidental. The real dynamic here is Islamism creating anti-Islam parties. As Norbert Hofer has shown in Austria, they are approaching 50 percent of the vote and with it, political power.

GR: Focusing on the "Islamophobic" parties opposition to Islam ignores that they are largely semi-fascist. Geert Wilders says that the Koran is comparable to Hitler's Mein Kampf and that Islam is a totalitarian ideology. Can he be an ally in the fight against Islamism? Maybe Obama and Merkel are weak on Islamism, but do you support Wilders, Trump, Austria's FPÖ, Hungary's Fidesz or Jobbik?

DP: Anti-Islamic leaders and parties are unsophisticated and make many mistakes. I hope that, as they get closer to power, they will get more educated and serious. I do not support them but I do give them advice.
GR: The failed coup in Turkey helped Erdoğan establish his Islamist dictatorship. Do you think NATO will accept an Islamofascist dictatorship as a member state? Some experts say that Saudi Arabia is also a Islamist dictatorship, but a partner of the USA and the West. Therefore realpolitik will prevail. How do you think the relations between Erdogan-Turkey and the West will develop?

DP: As I understand it, NATO has no mechanism to expel a member state; if that is accurate, it has no choice but to work with Erdoğan. In the brief period since the coup attempt, Erdoğan has been very hostile to the West. Perhaps he will end up in the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation.

Turkey's president Erdoğan (R) shakes hands with NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg
GR: Besides Islamists, the West has to deal with Russia, China, and North Korea. How can it deal with all these challenges at the same time? Which counter-jihadi strategy do you find most promising?

DP: The strategic environment today is far easier than during the cold war; there is no determined ideological enemy with the tools of a great power at its disposal. The key is for the West not to go to sleep. Electing such leaders as Obama and Merkel, however, means going to sleep. The best counter-jihadi strategy is one that takes ideas seriously.

GR: It took the West two decades to get rid of fascism and 70 years to get rid of communism. How long do you think will it take to get rid of Islamism? Are we facing the zenith of Islamism right now or are we just halfway up the road and will it get even worse?

DP: The battle against Islamism has not yet started. I cannot predict how long it will take. It's still pre-1945 in communist terms and the 1930s in fascist terms. I see Islamism as having peaked in 2012-13 and showing signs of weakness.

GR: Will the bad experience with Islamism and secular military dictatorships in Muslim countries create a new democratic movement and a new Muslim spring in the future after a catharsis? Or do you think these countries are all failed countries which will disintegrate because they are incapable of changing course?

DP: Muslims are learning bitter lessons from the Islamist experience. I hope they will put these to good use, though so far there is very little evidence of this happening


Friday, July 29, 2016

Back From Hilton Head Posted Some E Mails From Others. Hillary Running Against Herself.

A recap of Hillary's speech and John Podhoretz makes the most clever of comments as follows:

The most amazing thing about tonight is that Hillary is giving this speech for free.

It would appear Hillary is running against herself. (See 1 and 1a below.)

We were in Hilton Head and upon my return I got a lot of responses to various comments  and postings I have made in previous memos. Here are a select few:

"Renie and I just returned from seeing Hillary’s America. It’s a great history lesson and a terrific film. Every American needs to see it.

Dinesh D’souza is a very talented guy and certainly understands what America has to offer. He got a raw deal and learned from that experience.

“Crooked Clinton” is very appropriate for Hillary and both, Bill and Hill should be in jail. F-----"


I’d like to believe the Democrats just walked in to a trap set by Trump, to wit:

1.       Step 1. The Dems accuse Trump of asking Putin to hack into Hillary’s server and turn over any documents found there.
Assume that’s true, though he’d have to be a lot smarter and a lot more Machiavellian than I think he is to try such a thing. This presumably has already taken place.

2.      Step 2. Not surprisingly, the Democrats promptly cry foul, saying that such an attempt by Putin would be dangerous and put America’s national security at risk. Already done.

3.      Step 3. To be done quickly. Trump quickly responds that “Hillary has been saying all along that her server contained nothing that was classified or contained any information at all that related to, or threatened, our national security. Are you, and by inference Hillary, now saying there WAS or IS information on her servers that is classified and if it falls into the hands of the Russians, it will endanger our national security?”

4.      Step 4. Republicans immediately ask via a widely televised Monday evening prime time news conference, “Which is it? Is Hillary’s server safe and free from any national security risks and thus perfectly safe to reveal to Mr. Putin all information about her wedding dress, Chelsea’s baby, dinner engagements, etc. which is what you’ve claimed all along?”  “Or, conversely, does the server, in fact, contain classified information which you’ve disclaimed all along and which if revealed to Mr. Putin would put America’s national security at risk. Further in the news conference, Republicans state, “Either you (Democrats) and Hillary have been lying to us all along about what’s in those servers or you’re crying wolf now about your concerns for the importance of Mr. Trump’s tongue on cheek request of Mr. Putin to hack into Hillary’s servers. Take your choice. Which story do you want the American people to believe?”  If there’s nothing in the servers but what Hillary has claimed all along, why the concern for Putin finding out what Hillary wore to Chelsea’s wedding? It seems axiomatic that if your concern is valid, those servers must per force contain enough classified information to be of genuine concern for American safety if revealed to Mr. Putin.

Dick, I think Trump would have to be a modern day Machiavelli to have dreamed up such a scheme. But how delicious would it be if he were. And how stupid of the Democrats to have fallen right into the trap. Either the Democrats are incredibly stupid or Republicans are clueless about how to wage political war on a relentless enemy. Somehow, I think there’s a story here. E-"

 One summer evening long ago I caught a whiff of something foul.  Nearby a fly buzzed the lamp, bumping into its shade as flies do.  The flies were more numerous and the odor more intense the next evening.  The stench could only be emanating from beneath the house.

The next morning I crawled under the house to investigate.  An adult possum had found his last resting place beneath our floor boards.  The carcass was in advanced decay.  The stench was overwhelming.

My young son and his buddy had positioned themselves outside, watching me in wonder.  I scooped the animal up in a shovel and carried the rotting body out into the sunlight for burial in our backyard.

The boys marveled at my ability to perform this distasteful task.  The stench kept them 10 yards away.  But I focused and got through it.  I believe I climbed a notch on their list of heroes that morning.

It was not a difficult job but it did require one thing - an awareness of the stench.  That may sound trivial but it’s not.

In this silliest of political seasons which cynics would say is a no win scenario for the American voter, there is a clear difference between the two major party candidates.  It is the only difference which matters.

One is aware of the stench emanating from Washington while the other proposes to build on it.  One is putting on work gloves and grabbing a shovel, the other is spraying air freshener.

A man in a Florida supermarket tried to buy half a head of lettuce.

The very young produce assistant told him that they sell only whole heads of lettuce.

The man persisted and asked to see the manager.

The boy said he'd ask his manager about it.

Walking into the back room, the boy said to his manager: 'Some asshole wants to buy half a head of lettuce.'

As he finished his sentence, he turned to find the man standing right behind him, so he added, 'And this gentleman has kindly offered to buy the other half.'

The manager approved the deal, and the man went on his way.

Later the manager said to the boy, 'I was impressed with the way you got yourself out of that situation earlier. We like people who think on their feet here. Where are you from, son?'

‘Canada, sir,' the boy replied.

'Well, why did you leave Canada?'the manager asked.

The boy said, 'Sir, there's nothing but whores and hockey players up there.

‘Really?' said the manager. 'My wife is from Canada.'

‘No shit?' replied the boy. 'Who'd she play for?
British Aplomb​

For my friends who appreciate the finer points of the English language used correctly.

 His Lordship was in the study when the butler approached and coughed discreetly.

"May I ask you a question, My Lord.

"Go ahead, Carson," said His Lordship.

 "I am doing the crossword in The Times and I have found a word I am not too clear on."

 "What word is that?" asked His Lordship."Aplomb," My Lord.

 "Now that's a difficult one to explain.  I would say it is self-assurance or complete composure."

 "Thank you, My Lord, but I'm still a little confused."

"Let me give you an example to make it clearer.  Do you remember a few months ago when the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge arrived to spend a weekend with us?"

"I remember the occasion very well, My Lord. It gave the staff and myself much pleasure to look after them."

"Also," continued the Earl of Grantham, "do you remember when Wills plucked a rose for Kate in the rose garden?"

 "I was present on that occasion, My Lord, ministering to their needs.  

 "While plucking the rose, a thorn embedded itself in his thumb very deeply."  

"I witnessed the incident, My Lord, and saw the Duchess herself  remove the thorn and bandage his thumb with her own dainty handkerchief."

"That evening the hole that the rose made on his thumb was very sore. Kate had to cut up his venison even though it was extremely tender."

"Yes, My Lord, I did see everything that transpired that evening."

 "And do you remember the next morning while you were pouring coffee for Her Ladyship,  

Kate inquired of Wills with a loud voice,

Darling, does your prick still throb?'

 And you, Carson, did not spill one drop of coffee?

THAT, Carson, is complete composure or aplomb.”

         I apply for the secretary job I seen in t
Paper. I can type real kwik wit one finggar and do Sum Acounting 2.
I think I am good on the fone and I am a pepole Person.  Pepole really seam to respond goodly to me. I'm lookin for a jobb as a secritary but it Kant be 2 Complikaited
My spelling is not 2 good but find that I awfin get a Job Bcuz of my persinalety..
My salerery is open so we can discus wat you want To pay me and wat you think that I am wurth, I can start imeditely. 
Thank you in advanse 4 yore Anser.
Hopifuly I M Yore best aplicant so phar.
Peggy May McBiggins
PS : I half included a pickture of me B low.

Dear Peggy May:
Start on Monday, we have spell check.

Sometimes, when I look at my children, I say to myself, 'Lillian, you should have remained a 
Lillian Carter (mother of Jimmy Carter)


By all means, marry. If you get a good wife, you'll become happy; if you get a bad one, you'll become a philosopher. 
- Socrates 

I was married by a judge. I should have asked for a jury. 
- Groucho Marx 

My wife has a slight impediment in her speech. Every now and then she stops to breathe. 
- Jimmy Durante 

I have never  hated a man enough to give his diamonds back. 
- Zsa Zsa Gabor 


Until I was thirteen, I thought my name was SHUT UP . 
- Joe Namath 


We could certainly slow the aging process down if it had to work its way through Congress.  
- Will Rogers  

Don't worry about avoiding temptation.   As you grow older, it will avoid you. 
- Winston Churchill 


By the time a man is wise enough to watch his step, he's too old to go anywhere. 
- Billy Crystal 


I was married by a judge. I should have asked for a jury. 
- Groucho Marx 



1)Analysis: Charmless Vessel Shouts Acceptance Speech at America

By Guy Benson

It's finally, blessedly over. As expected, Hillary Clinton's anticlimactic acceptance speech capped off a Democratic convention at which two of the weakest prime time speeches were delivered by the the two members of the nominated ticket.

There were powerful moments earlier in the evening -- including an impactful address by the father of a Muslim US soldier who paid the ultimate sacrifice for his country in Iraq, and an address from a valorous Medal of Honor recipient, who was shamefully heckled by some DNC delegates. But when the lights shone brightest, we got a perfectly nice little talk by Chelsea Clinton, an over-the-top 'Heroine Hillary' introductory video, and a over-long, mediocre, robotically-delivered address by the woman of the hour. Pete Wehner, a senior speechwriter for President Bush and an exceptionally harsh conservative critic of Donald Trump, rendered this assessment of her performance:

Some bits were better than others, but Clinton only seemed to truly come into her own when she was attacking Donald Trump -- her longtime friend and donor, whose wedding she attended. Hillary quoted Trump's infamous statement that he understands ISIS better than our generals. She looked into the camera, ice cold, and unleashed one of several stinging lines:

Alas, there is also no other Hillary Clinton. This is it.  If only she and Donald had taken some voice modulation lessons -- maybe (stronger) together? -- a few weeks ago, things might have been better.  They weren't.  In any case, even if you're inclined to agree with her temperament critiques of Trump (as I am), it's quite rich listening to a woman who knowingly compromised high-level secrets for her own selfish reasons and lied repeatedly about it lecture anyone about trust and national security.  The rest of her speech was almost entirely unmemorable -- although newscasts will love her 'break the ceiling, sky's the limit' formulation.  She talked a little bit about her upbringing and family, she tossed a few bland rhetorical scraps to independent and Republican-leaning voters, and she rattled off a laundry list of liberal-left agenda items.  She made sure to highlight her strong opposition to Citizens United -- because this woman is so terribly offended by money in politics, you see -- failing to mention that the ruling she abhors literally overruled the government's censorship of a film that was critical of...Hillary Clinton.  She also condemned "mean and divisive rhetoric," which seems apt in an age of Trump. But once again, physician, heal thyself. As I predicted, Donald Trump earned a clear polling bounce out of Cleveland. It may or may not be receding. I would be surprised if Clinton doesn't garner one from the program in Philadelphia, too.  But because this is 2016, and because the commentariat was largely enamored with the Democrats' gathering, this is a reasonable caveat:

By mid-August, 
the polls will likely have 'settled' a bit, and we'll have a better sense of the dynamics of the post-conventions horserace.  And then come the debates.  I'll leave you with a sentiment I felt acutely while watching the final evening of the DNC proceedings, and some sorely-needed levity:


Hillary’s One-Candidate Race

She’ll try to disqualify Trump because she loses if the election is a referendum on her.

Hillary Clinton testifies before the House Select Committee on Benghazi, Oct. 22 22, 2015.ENLARGE
Hillary Clinton testifies before the House Select Committee on Benghazi, Oct. 22 22, 2015. PHOTO: GETTY IMAGES

Conventions are useful for clarifying elections, and this week’s Philly confab notably so. A week of speakers—Democrat after Democrat beseeching the nation to please know thatHillary Clinton really is a good gal—has made something clear: This is, essentially, a one-person presidential race.

It’s Hillary against Hillary. This November is about whether Americans can look at 40 years of Clinton chicanery and nearly a decade of broken Obama promises, and still pull the lever for her. Not that Donald Trump doesn’t matter. He does, in that he can help sharpen those concerns. But Hillary is the main event.

The polls bear this out. Aside from his recent convention bump, Mr. Trump’s numbers have been largely consistent. Whether he leads or trails, and by how much, is mostly a function of voters’ shifting views on Mrs. Clinton. Lately her poll numbers have been devastating.
A CNN survey this week showed 68% of voters say she isn’t honest and trustworthy—an all-time high. CBS found virtually the same number: 67%. In the CNN poll, meanwhile, only 39% of voters said they held a favorable view of Mrs. Clinton. This is lower than any time CNN has polled Hillary since the spring of 1992—before she was first lady.
Mr. Trump’s poll numbers also bear this out. He is currently leading in the Real Clear Politics average despite no real ground game, little real fundraising, little policy message, a divided conservative electorate, and one of the messiest conventions on record. As of June 30, Mrs. Clinton and her allies had raised a stunning $600 million, which is already being spent to trash Mr. Trump. Yet to little or no effect. Mr. Trump is hardly a potted plant, but even if he were . . .
Mrs. Clinton’s problem is Mrs. Clinton. She is running against her own ethical morass. Already she was asking voters to forget about cattle futures and fake sniper fire and Whitewater and Travelgate. Then she chose to vividly revive the public nausea with her self-serving email stunt and her Clinton Foundation money grubbing.
Oh, she tried to roll out the usual Clinton defense: that this was just part of a renewed attack by political enemies. Yet the neutral inspector general of the State Department slammed her handling of official email; the FBI director (who works for Barack Obama) attested that she was careless with classified information; and she was caught on tape telling a series of lies about the situation. All of which makes it tough to blame the vast right-wing conspiracy. Tim Kaine’s many assurances that he “trusts” Mrs. Clinton was the campaign’s public acknowledgment that almost no one else in the nation does.
Hillary is running, too, against the reality of President Obama policies, which she promises not only to continue, but to build on. The president’s glowing appraisalWednesday night of his time in office bore no relation to the country most Americans see—one in which health care costs more than ever, they struggle to pay the bills, and terror attacks on Western democracies are a weekly event. The state of the country might not be quite so grim as Mr. Trump painted it in Cleveland, but the mood is much closer to that grimness than to Mr. Obama’s forced optimism.
The president’s policies, which Mrs. Clinton now owns, have alienated significant tranches of voters that she needs this fall—in particular blue-collar Democrats. Coal communities are rejecting Hillary outright. Many union workers are too, whether they be Teamsters for Trump, or police officers appalled by the Democratic Party’s attacks on their profession.
Mrs. Clinton is trying to win back that blue-collar support by moving sharply on issues like free trade, but she’ll be hard pressed to out-populist Mr. Trump on that score. Whatever Bill says, Americans do not look at Hillary and see “change”—at least not the kind of change they are after.
Mrs. Clinton will continue to warn that her opponent is a threat, to try to worry voters enough that they overcome their misgivings about her. Mr. Trump can certainly make that job easier for her. Conversely, he can help his own numbers and campaign by focusing precisely on her vulnerabilities, and by presenting a stronger policy agenda of his own.Hillary is also running against her own party, which has moved left without her. She has chased after progressives, adopting one position after another from Bernie Sanders,feting Elizabeth Warren, working “progressive” into every sentence. But this week showed that her party’s liberal wing is unconvinced, still feeling the Bern. Yes, she has done some uniting in Philly, and will likely get her own bump. At the same time, 45% of Democrats who voted in the primary told that CNN pollster they still wish Sanders were the nominee.

Mrs. Clinton is ultimately banking that a significant number of Americans won’t be able to vote for Mr. Trump. Certainly some won’t. But a dislike of Mr. Trump does not imply a like of Mrs. Clinton—and certainly not a vote for Mrs. Clinton.