John Balentine wrote a column about choosing hope, about liberals and conservatives seeking each other out (“Here’s Something: This year, choose hope”). He wanted to lay a foundation for all of us acting in a way that would not be toxic to our “pluralistic” society. Does he have any memory of the civility exhibited by President Obama over the past eight years and how badly he was treated? Now he expects open-mindedness, now that Republicans are in control. And he is thankful that Donald Trump is “thinking outside the box.” Does he have any memory of the things the president-elect has said or tweeted? Next he dismissed the entirety of Obama’s foreign policy as “stuck in a rut.” Does he remember the war years that preceded the last eight years? Instead of bombing, we are talking to Iran, and opening up to Cuba. He ignored the accomplishments of Obamacare and its slowing of costs, instead focusing on the 25 percent increase in current plans in 2017, increases that will not be significant after subsidies for 77 percent of those actually impacted. He ignored job growth and banking reforms.
I’m all for open-mindedness. Let’s not decry fake news by claiming a fact-free Trump is what we need. I hope to discuss further my objections to what I see coming, and I hope Balentine will revisit his feelings about not playing into fear while at the same time seeing the Trump years as “just what the doctor ordered.” Has he observed the transition?