Merry Christmas! (posted 12/21/17)

It’s only a few days before Christmas, and I thought I’d post one more time before everyone who hasn’t already scattered for the holiday scatters for the holiday.

I have a couple of favorite stories to mention, followed by a “Best-of” Christmas list.

Story 1 – Trump closes out the year with a great tax cut that is sweetness and light, six ways to Sunday!  Cutting the corporate rate from universe-high to competitive-with-other countries is going to boost economic growth to an extent that will surprise only single-celled organisms and Paul Krugman.  Plus, in probably the best under-reported, seemingly unrelated bonus ever, the Obamacare mandate was killed as a part of this!

Holy cow!  It’s like you were just given an amazingly delicious candy bar, and then you found out that the foil it was wrapped in is gold of such high quality that you are now in a higher tax bracket… and your taxes just got cut!  Plus, the chocolate that it is made of is delicious, and yet somehow causes you to lose weight and lower your cholesterol.  Plus it’s Christmas morning, and the prize turkey – the enormous one, in the poulterer’s window in the next street but one – is still available, and the kid passing by your mansion – delightful boy, remarkable boy – will run and get it for you for a crown.  Which you now have plenty of, because of your magical gold-wrapped candy bar, and your tax cut!  God bless us, every one!

2. What is the only thing more fun than watching the Trumpkin take a tax-cut victory lap right before Christmas? Watching the congressional Democrats lose their minds over it. Nancy Pelosi said, “Oil can.  Oil can.”  By which she meant, “this is a disaster, the world is ending!”  Chuck Schumer said, “Waaaahhhh!”   Elizabeth Warren painted her face with ashes and did the Ghost Dance, piercing her flesh in a mysterious ceremony understood only by the Connecticut Commanches.  Or was it the Massachusetts MicMac?  Or the Wampanoag WASPS?  I can never remember what tribe she is from.   (Say it with me: we should never stop mocking Elizabeth Warren.)

My favorite leftist reaction – dutifully picked up by various leftist reporters – was that this tax reform will mean a huge tax increase in 2027 for most Americans.   The first time I heard that, the date slipped past me.  But the third or fourth time, I started wondering, and with just a few seconds on Google, I realized what these slimy pols are saying: the tax cut will sunset in 2027.  So technically, they are correct – if nothing changes in 10 years (!), and the rate is allowed to revert to what it is now, then Americans will face a tax increase.

WHEN THIS TAX CUT ENDS!  Do you get it?  This tax cut is terrible.  Because it’s so great, that when it ends and rates go back to what Democrats want, it will be terrible.   That gall of these people should not continue to surprise me, but somehow it still does.

It’s like a doctor telling a 25 year old with a scary cancer diagnosis, “I’m afraid I’ve got some bad news.  We have a treatment, but it’s going to result in you dying after what is likely to be declining health, in your mid-90s.”

The 25-year-old starts to cry, but then looks confused.  “What?  You mean, the treatment is going to cure my cancer?”

“Yes,” Doctor Schumer says, “for now. But I’m afraid that’s going to mean that you’ll die of old age, in a weakened state, after what we expect will be a long decline.”

“You mean, 70 years from now?!”

“Yes.”

“After I’ve lived a full life?  Surrounded by my kids and grandkids?”

Doctor, exasperated.  “Are you not getting this?  You’re going to die!”

“In the year 2087?  Not next spring, when all the flowers are in bloom?”

“Yes!  You finally understand!”

“Please stand right there, while I strangle you with your stethoscope.”

And, scene.

 

3 – A new poll just came out with the finding that Hillary Clinton’s approval rating is at an all-time low.

I know, she should be old news, and we should be tiring of kicking that nearly dead Clydesdale-ankled horse, and her approval ratings have no pressing political importance.  And yet, they fill me with sweet, unreasoning glee.

Several of you were kind enough to call me the gift that keeps on giving this year, but I am a lightweight in that category beside Hillary Clinton!  She has spent a full year stepping on one rake after another, with truly gratifying results; she’s written a book and given what seems like 1000 speeches, and has blamed everyone but the defensive backfield of the TCU Horned Frogs for her loss in the election.  And just by staying in the public eye, she is a constant reminder of how great it is that she is not the president.  Hillary 2020 – We’re all with Her again!

This has truly been a December that verged on “too much winning!”  So as I prepare myself to celebrate Christmas, and I warm myself by standing next to the embers that remain from the last of Obama’s legacy, now totally consumed and turned to ash by a fire as orange as the hair of the man who lit it, I reflect on the best of the Christmas season.

Best Christmas music/songs:  Handel’s Messiah; O Come, O Come Emmanuel; Once in Royal David’s City; and Hark, the Herald Angels Sing all have to be in the Top 5.  For a singer, I really like an eccentric guy named Sufjan Stevens – check out some of his Christmas songs on Youtube.  Also, our Lutheran church features Silent Night (sung by candlelight) on Christmas eve, and always has us sing one verse in German.  Which is hilarious, because there is no greater juxtaposition than that between lyrics about a soothing, moonlit scene and the lilting, back-of-the-throat consonants of German (“Stille NACHT, heilige NACHT!”).   (Manger owner’s kid:  “Daddy, where does that angry wise man who is cursing at baby Jesus come from?”  Dad:  “Germany.”  Child: “Ohhh. Now it makes sense.”)

Best Christmas writing:  Dickens to win, place and show on this one, with A Christmas Carol.   I love this one so much that I both watch at least two versions of it each year, and listen to it on cd as we drive to see family.  If you like to listen to books, get Frank Muller’s version, which is perfect.

Best Christmas decoration:  the tree, of course.   A wreath is nice, some garland is cool, and I can appreciate a Santa outfit, but the tree is the main event.   I know, it’s a pagan Germanic thing, but Christianity subsumed a cool tradition, and made it more about love and family and less about cleaving your enemies’ skulls with a battle axe.  So, well done, Christians.

Best Christmas memory: The year my sister and I got toys that were so gender appropriate that it was ridiculous.  Mom and dad got us each a giant, cardboard and plastic playhouse type of thing: my sister’s was a kitchen (with an oven that opened!) and mine was a tank.

A tank, I tells ya!  With a viewing slit to look through as I imagined steering over snowy fields near Bastogne, and a plastic machine gun with a range of fire that included whichever German pillboxes were nearby, and also my sister’s kitchen, which I repeatedly raked with imaginary .50 caliber bullets.

There was no gender dysmorphia around the Simpson household, is my point.

I hope you all have a great Christmas!

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