Month: November 2016

Fasten your seat belts

There are millions of Americans who voted for Donald J. Trump as their next president. So many decided that a change in direction on national policies was important that many blue states flipped over to become red states. This after a campaign in which the winning candidate did not lay out a specific agenda—just a lot of applause lines like building a wall along our border with Mexico, banning immigration into the country by those of the Muslim faith amid many others. Now as president-elect, Trump is slowly forming his government. Those who voted for change are going to get more change than they probably hoped for. Trump has named Steve Bannon, former chief executive of Breitbart News—known for its alt-right, nationalist, anti-Semite views—as his chief political strategist. Bannon’s appointment has many on both the left and the right very concerned about how much influence he will have over Donald Trump’s thinking. Until Trump is actually in the Oval Office will we not know what kind of president he will be. The awesome power of the office has a way of moderating the president. Already Trump is backing away from some of his proposals that got him where he is today: he won’t pursue a prosecution of Hillary Clinton for her use of a private email server while Secretary of State or for any alleged improprieties at the Clinton...

Read More

Christmas in Keizer

Many homes are still enjoying Thanksgiving dinner leftovers and cleaning up after a house full of guests and now their attention turns to the Christmas season. Keizer does love Christmas and there are plenty of activities and events to help enjoy their favorite time of year. It all starts with the annual lighting of Keizer’s Christmas tree at Walery Plaza at the intersection of River Road and Cherry Ave. on Tuesday, Dec. 6. Two lucky kids will be chosen to help Santa Claus flip the switch. Later that week the first Keizer Holiday Lights Parade will travel down River Road. Staged by the Keizer Chamber of Commerce, the parade takes over after the Festival of Lights Parade ended its 25-year run last year. It’s a big job to put on that parade and we’re fortunate to have oranizations and volunteers who will keep a light parade in town. Speaking of lights, on Dec. 2 the Miracle of Christmas display starts in the Gubser neighborhood and runs through Dec. 26. There will be lots of chances for Keizer kids to see and talk to Santa Claus. He’ll be making appearances at the Volcano Stadium (via helicopter) on Dec. 3, he’ll be at breakfast at the Keizer Fire hall on Dec. 11, he’ll be giving candy canes with help from Marion County Fire District #1 in the Clear Lake/Forest Ridge area...

Read More

Democrats at a crossroads

By MICHAEL GERSON    While the challenges of the GOP —its long-term demographic difficulties, its erratic leadership, the bitter struggle for its ideological soul—are obscured by victory, the problems of the Democratic Party are on full display. Republicans suffer from heart disease; Democrats have an ugly, gushing head wound. The losing party would be foolish to minimize the scale of its political failure. Hillary Clinton proved incapable of defeating a reality television host whom more than 60 percent of Americans viewed as unfit to be president. It is perhaps the most humiliating moment in the long history of Mr. Jefferson’s party. But the effect is more than reputational. The Democratic candidate and her team could not protect America from a serious risk to its ideals and institutions by an untested and unstable novice who flirted with authoritarianism and made enough gaffes on an average Tuesday to sink a normal presidential campaign. Donald Trump was riding a modest electoral wave in certain parts of the country, but it was not large enough to overwhelm a reasonably capable Democratic candidate with a decent political strategy. Trump’s vote did not burst the levees; it barely lapped over the top of them in the industrial Midwest. The “blue wall” was too low by just a foot or two. But why was the election even close enough for bad strategy in Wisconsin, Michigan and...

Read More