Archive for General

Coming to a head as clarity peeks above the surface here and there

Clarice Feldman: ‘Collusion’ Collapses: Dem Congressional Espionage Ring Takes Center Ring – “In truth, the Russians “colluded” through GPS Fusion to harm, not help, Trump and the evidence of that is coming out.” Then there is the history: the Plame case, Whitewater, the misuse of classified information, and special versus independent counels. There is a lack of predicate and other malfeasance in this history – did you know that “Last year, Libby sought and received a reinstatement of his law license and an investigation was held, with counsel confirming his innocence” ? The same players are doing it again and the parallels are striking.

It’s time to repeal the Special Counsel law which has now been used twice to hamstring two Republican Presidents, has dubious constitutional authority, and will never result in the indictment of a prominent Democratic politician.

While the press has been promoting a ridiculous and ass backwards Russian collusion story, it has been sitting on a far bigger story: The likelihood that the Congressional Democrats financed and enabled the largest espionage ring in U.S. history.

Buckle your seatbelts. Draining the swamp is going to create a lot of waves.

Meanwhile, people are noting the effort that went into uncovering the provenance of a letter a nine year old sent to the President and how this compares to the lack of effort in digging into Fusion GPS and related scandals.

Rober Simon: Proliferating Scandals Make Mueller Investigation Ludicrous – “Even if Mueller were even-handed and the exact right person for the job — an open question at the moment — no single special counsel could handle all this. It’s a game of whack-a-mole to beat all games of whack-a-mole. Let’s enumerate the scandals as of this moment, several or all of which are or could be connected.”

Quite a litany, huh? Are all six connected? It’s hard to say at this time. Maybe all are or none are. I would imagine it’s some, if not all. But they’re all connected morally — plus beneath all this are the endless leaks, which I suppose could constitute a scandal of their own.

Now let’s play that game from Sesame Street — “One of these things is not like the others.” Yes, you got it. It’s number one. In that case, Republicans are under suspicion. In the other five, it’s the Democrats. And yet the only one under official investigation by Robert Mueller and crew is one. Something rotten in the state of…? You bet!

Daniel John Sobieski: Political Unmasking of Team Trump Must Be Prosecuted

Despite multiple investigations of alleged Russian collusion dating back to Trump’s, shocking to liberals and progressives, election, the only crimes we know have been committed have been the leaking of classified information by Trump opponents, starting with the illegal unmasking of former National Security Adviser Gen. Michael Flynn.

This is nothing less than an attempted coup, sedition against the government of the United States by official sworn to uphold the Constitution.

Sen. Tim Kaine has carelessly thrown out the word “treason” regarding charges of Team Trump collusion with the Russians, whom he and others claim is trying to subvert our democracy. It is clear that it was not the Russians, but Team Obama that was and still is trying to subvert our democracy. The breathtaking subversion and criminal activity that is involved here is only now becoming apparent

Forget Watergate, Democrats. Compared to your own criminal enterprise, Watergate was indeed a third-rate burglary. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, you have a lot of work to do and a lot of people to prosecute for their crimes against the government and people of the United States.

Powerline has insight into two other fronts: Paul Mirengoff on why Europe balks at Russia sanctions; Trump won’t veto them and John Hinderaker on why The Obamacare Drama Is Not Over. The only simple thing about issues these days is the block opposition of the Democrats and that solidarity is saying the Left is not concerned about the issues but rather about rejecting elections.

The fact is that the Democrats need Republicans to prop up their failing, Rube Goldberg-like health care scheme. Congressional Republicans tried to oblige them, but Democrats preferred the presumed political gain that would result from the GOP’s failure. Now, the Democrats need the Trump administration to bail out their pet project. I find it hard to see any reason why the administration should oblige them.

Ed Krayewski: Get a Speeding Ticket, Pay the DA for Better Treatment – “Louisiana’s pre-trial diversion programs helps drivers avoid higher insurance premiums—and enriches DAs’ offices.”

The hustle reveals what a central role revenue-raising plays in policing.

The fact that some moving violations can be downgraded so easily to non-moving violations suggests that they were not moving violations in the first place—that they were always primarily revenue-raising endeavors.

David Middleton: Fake News: Trump official, Scaramucci, says Earth is only 5,500 yrs old. – “Anatomy of a fake news story.”

Here we have a young geologist, writing for Forbes, with a Young Earth Creationist obsession, fabricating a story. This errant misquote is now being repeated as fact-based news on multiple Internet outlets… the anatomy of a fake news story.

More FUD Mongering by John Bowden: Hackers break into voting machines in 90 minutes at competition – “Tech minds at the annual DEF CON in Las Vegas were given physical voting machines and remote access, with the instructions of gaining access to the software.” When you give someone access, then, sure, there’s a way to break into them. The story is misdirection in order to create a headline and FUD mongering propaganda. That is also a form of Fake News. The real question is about voters who have access but aren’t qualified to vote and about ballot management practice that allows improper access to the voting process and product and about auditing and verification procedures.

Patricia McCarthy: Trump Is Different, and Different Scares People – it is about understanding what is behind the behavior.

Leave a Comment

Forgotten History the Rewritten History

The Forgotten History of Britain’s White Slaves in America by Janet Levy.

A well written and well researched historical narrative, White Cargo does an excellent job of elucidating a forgotten part of our colonial past by telling the story of thousands of Britons who lived and died in bondage before African slaves were transported to the New World.

In contrast consider John Hinderaker’s observation about Confederate: More Left-Wing Propaganda – “The premise of Confederate is that the South prevailed in the Civil War, and now, in the 21st century, slavery still exists there.”

The show will “draw a line” between slavery and “voter suppression,” whatever that means, and mass incarceration–being convicted of a serious crime is just like being a slave,

Liberals love to talk about slavery. In fact, kids who go to public schools could get the impression that the only thing that happened in American history between 1600 and 1964 was slavery.

Actually, if liberals wanted to create a television series about modern slavery, they wouldn’t have to concoct a counterfactual history. There are plenty of places where the institution of slavery has been translated into the 20th and 21st centuries. They could set their series in Cuba, for example. What does slavery with “no whips and no plantations,” as Bloys put it, look like? Cuba would be an excellent example; they would only need to replace whips with more lethal devices.

Then there is the U.S.S.R., or China, or East Germany, or North Korea. The modern form of slavery isn’t really hard to find. We have been more or less surrounded by it for quite a while. But HBO is looking for left-wing fantasy, not reality.

Scott McKay: Forget about Trump and the Russians. The real action is with the Awan brothers and Fusion GPS. – “There’s a lot of debate about Trump’s “drain the swamp” mantra these days, but nobody is really denying the swamp exists. And nobody can — not with Fusion GPS and the Awan brothers skulking around in the muck.”

If you’re sick and tired of the never-ending “Trump And The Russians” scandal, which for all its hype has produced scant little actual evidence of anything other than desultory cooperation on the part of the president’s camp with an investigation it quite reasonably believes is a kangaroo court, this letter from Goodlatte’s committee might just be what the doctor ordered.

Ace: More on Fusion GPS: Veteran Washington Reporter Says Media Won’t Report on Fusion GPS’ Activities as a Major “Source” of “News,” Because If You Dug Down Into It and Saw Fusion GPS’ Emails With the Media, “It will look like an apocalypse”

Leo Goldstein: The “Battle for The Net” – a Little Twin of Climate Alarmism – “Both issues are built upon scientific or technical matters, serving as an obstacle for public understanding.”

Net Neutrality is the good principle that a provider of information access service, a device, or a platform must be neutral regarding the content accessed or transmitted by its service, device, or platform. In particular, Internet Service Providers must not discriminate between net traffic based on the content or originating website. Also, they must not give preferential treatment to their own services, such as voice over IP, relative to their competitors.

Under the pretext of net neutrality, FCC crafted multiple regulations that made broadband ISPs almost unable to manage their own networks, and put their whole operations in the legal grey area. Not incidentally, the robust growth in broadband providers’ competition that preceded Obama election stopped and many new broadband technologies (like WiMAX) became buried. For the first time in the history, Internet access prices started to rise! But that was only a prelude to the real action.

Just like climate alarmists, Free Press et al. created a bogeyman and declared it the enemy in the battle. Only this time, it’s not “fossil fuels,” but broadband ISPs and cable companies, … The Left has recognized a unique advantage in fighting a bogeyman – the bogeyman neither fights back nor argues. Thus, they win every debate!

same ol’ same ol’

Leave a Comment

Their conduct is ignoble and dishonorable

IN AMERICA WE DON’T WORSHIP GOVERNMENT — WE WORSHIP GOD.” Donald Trump’s greatest tweet ever says Cheryl K. Chumley. “The fact we have a White House chief who isn’t afraid to give power to this principle by speaking it loudly and proudly is an about-time moment in American politics. Simply put: Trump gets it. What a relief, and respite from the government storm, for us all.”

VDH: Trump’s circular firing squad – “Democrats and Republicans alike are missing their target and hitting each other.”

The result is that when factions of the Republican Congress are not battling each other, they are feuding with Democrats and often with the Trump White House.

At best, some anti-Trump intellectuals and pundits still cannot separate Mr. Trump’s conservative agenda (which they privately support) from Mr. Trump’s reality television persona (which they find boorish and beneath the dignity of the presidency). At worst, some are so invested in the idea that Mr. Trump would or should fail that their opposition threatens to become an obsessive self-fulfilling prophecy.

The result of the circular firing squad is a crazed shootout where everyone gets hit.

Forgotten in the hail of 360-degree suicide gunfire is the only story that counts: the welfare of the United States.

Discovery! It is what was gleefully anticipated in the Mann v Ball and Steyn case that Mann avoided with a contempt of court judgment. Now there’s another effort to expose the Left with this court process to uncover reality. Thomas Lifson says Palin goes for the jugular in defamation lawsuit against the New York Times.

A nightmare is unfolding for the New York Times that could well be devastating for the collapsing credibility and mindshare of the entire progressive media. In a court filing by defense counsel for the New York Times, the scope of the discovery being sought by Palin’s legal team was revealed. If the court allows, the story that it could tell might well be all too revealing.

There is more exposure, too. Michael Bertolone: Donald Trump, the (Un-)Masked Magician – “Trump has stripped the bark off the Washington elite, exposing their sleight-of-hand, doublespeak, and delay tactics designed to preserve the status quo.”

They have attempted to paint him as a madman, unhinged and out of control. However, there is a method to his supposed madness, which he has honed over the years as a tactic to draw his opponents out and reveal their hidden agendas and ulterior motives.

And there is another reference to magic by Brian C. Joondeph: What if the Trump-Sessions feud is one big charade? – “What if this is all one big distraction? A charade? A magic trick?”

This is just my theory. If Trump fires Sessions tomorrow, then my idea heads straight to the ash heap of foolishness. But if he doesn’t, don’t watch Trump’s Twitter account. That’s the magician’s misdirection. Instead, watch what isn’t being widely reported in the mainstream news. Watch what the lefty bloggers are having fits about. That’s where the magic trick is taking place.

Ace picks up on the Left’s version of magic: Must-Read Piece About Fusion GPS – “Lee Smith details the history of the firm.” Capitalism filling a market, which in this case is propaganda. Isn’t it wonderful?

Basically, some reporters realized that the model of news-researched-by-newspapers was over. So they opened a research/”comms” shop to research the news (or “news,” or even #FakeNews) and just deliver it to friendlies, chiefly on the left, who have neither the institutional support nor the personal work ethic to do the work themselves.

Lee Smith: “Rather, the problem is that the mediating institutions that enabled Americans to debate and decide our politics and policies, here and abroad, are deeply damaged, likely beyond repair.”

John Hinderaker: The Democrats’ Obstruction Continues – “Al Franken and Amy Klobuchar should be ashamed of themselves. They don’t even pretend to have any basis for objecting to Justice Stras’s nomination. They are acting out of sheer partisanship and, frankly, hatred of the president who surprised them by being elected. Their conduct is ignoble and dishonorable.”

Leave a Comment

Fake this. Fake that. What’s real?

Richard W. Rahn: Crony capitalism against the real thing – “Collusion between government and business corrupts the free market.”

A government that spends trillions of dollars and controls the fate of tens of millions of businesses and individuals through regulation is nothing more than a gigantic honey pot for those who seek to gain without engaging in productive activity.

President Trump has been explicit about understanding at least part of the problem. Yet, he has given little indication that he understands the true depth of the problem. Even his limited attempts to rein in government have caused his opponents to fear that he will take away their honey pot, which, in part, explains their vicious attempts to get rid of him.

Eric Rozenman: The fake ‘health care’ debate – “The real battle is over entitlement to medical insurance.”

Confucius, who lived so long ago that famine, not obesity, menaced public health, supposedly observed that “the first step to wisdom is to call things by their proper name.” If so, then angry congressional town hall meetings and serial legislative impasses are not really about health care, let alone reform.

If “reform” implies improvement, then that’s not what we’re shouting about. Rather, the demand is for “entitled” medical insurance.

In affordable democracies, government at all levels — local, state and federal — can only be the agency of last resort. For reasons of liberty, equality and security we do not privatize functions such as justice and defense — police, courts and the military. But most other economic and social activity belongs in the private, not the public, sphere.

The long campaign for “universal health care” reflects in no small measure the statist compulsion, dating to the progressive era, for government by experts, dictating to the common people for their own good. That necessarily means an ever-contracting sphere of individual liberty and free choice leading to more rigid supply of goods and services, lower profits and less innovation.

Richard Berman: Peddlers of junk science – “Anti-chemical activists use flimsy cancer claims to tarnish industries.”

Most research organizations don’t find themselves needing to save face with highly publicized studies proving they align with the rest of the scientific community. But IARC has made a name for itself not through prestigious research, but by its controversial involvement pushing political agendas and bowing to activist researchers.

It’s curious how an agency that claims moral authority for weeding out conflicts of interest (read: private-sector scientists) would permit testimony from the employee of a green nongovernment organization that rakes in more than $130 million each year by promoting a global fear of chemicals.

Groups like IARC have the benefit of hiding their politics behind the clout of an international health organization. Unless industries want their products raked over the coals by an agency whose existence depends on the promotion of public fear, they need to join the ranks of leaders speaking out against IARC’s tactics.

Now what.

Leave a Comment

What is “The Whole Truth?”

The American Council on Science and Health has two of note this morning. Ruth Kava writes that These Chickens Can’t Cross The Road – “The Organic Consumers Association avers that organic foods since they supposedly contain no pesticides, GMOs or other such “dangerous” items, are better for you.”

But an exposé recently published in the Chicago Tribune begs to differ.

Writing specifically about Herbruck’s Poultry Ranch, located in Saranac, Michigan, journalist Peter Whoriskey notes that Herbruck’s is probably responsible for around ten percent of all the eggs sold in the US. His information belies the common misconceptions about organic chicken production.

while organic proponents may feel good about the supposed lack of pesticides and GMOs in their chickens, as far as the birds go, being raised organically isn’t what it’s cracked up to be.

Alex Berezow: Call junk science by its rightful name: Fake news – “The future of our republic depends on a properly informed electorate.” He takes up a list of his ten favorite junk fads and buzzwords.

By dumping these and other buzzwords, our society will be smarter, healthier and more scientifically savvy. In a world in which alternative facts are gaining ground, it’s past time to junk junk science.

Robert Knight: Rooting out vote fraud – “Why the vote fraud panel frightens the left.” It is getting so easy to compare and contrast the hypocrisy, double standards, and bullying behavior.

Judging by the unhinged reaction this past week to the first public meeting of President Trump’s blue-ribbon voter fraud panel, progressives are terrified.

They’re fearful that these election experts are actually going to do the job they’ve been given — uncovering the extent to which the nation’s voter rolls are vulnerable to fraudulent activity. How else to explain the panic and shots fired before the commission even met?

but surely he’s heard about the Democrats’ and the media’s obsessive Russian conspiracy theories. Bet he won’t tell them to shut up and get a grip.

Falsely accusing their opponents of racism, homophobia or jingoism has become the left’s default tactic when they aren’t rioting in the streets, shutting down campus speakers or shooting Republicans at a softball practice.

The progressive left is certainly afraid. They loathe scrutiny, and honorable men and women revealing the truth. We’re still waiting for that “civility” and “tolerance” that we heard so much about before Mr. Trump was sworn in.

Meanwhile, let’s hope and pray that the vote fraud commissioners, like the man who appointed them, have thick skins.

Rowan Scarborough: Fact-checkers drawn into heated debate over number of noncitizens who vote illegally – The defense of the Left is an assault on all fronts.

A right-leaning fact-checker is fighting critics on the left who say its conclusion that a lot of noncitizens vote illegally is bunk.

The online battle of debunking and rebuttal is playing out as a much larger war has erupted between President Trump’s commission on election integrity and Democratic state leaders. They are refusing to provide the panel with public voter registration data. Left-wing groups are suing to stop the commission’s work, which could settle the noncitizen debate by collecting enough data.

One way to settle the noncitizen debate could be the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity. The co-chairmen, Vice President Mike Pence and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, want the states to provide what is normally public voter registration data.

Democrat-led states are stonewalling the commission, and a leader of this resistance is Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe.

Bruce Fein: Recasting Trump’s election integrity commission – “Supreme Court, Constitution offer guidance for voter fraud probing.” The argument offered here brings to mind the special prosecutor investigation and just how far down the tubes an expectation of responsibility in government has gone such that excess micro-managing is needed.

The EO should be narrowed to examining whether a cluster of federal laws prohibiting non-citizens from registration or voting have been adequately enforced by U.S. Attorneys or the Criminal Division of the Department of Justice. The President, after all, is constitutionally entrusted with of taking care that the laws be faithfully executed under Article II, section 3.

Concrete evidence of non-citizen voting is not required to justify an Advisory Commission investigation.

Enforcement of our federal prohibitions on non-citizen voting is too important to be left to conjecture or speculation.

Jeffrey Folks: To Sink Trump Is to Sink Ordinary Americans – “The left is determined to sink the Trump presidency.”

Obviously, the left hates Trump with a vengeance, but what they despise even more is the average American with his dream of freedom and opportunity.

Hillary Clinton let it slip when she mocked the “basket of deplorables,” those whom she accused of racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia, and Islamophobia. Having at first insisted that “half” of Trump voters fall into these categories, she then retreated from that figure: it was somewhat less than half who are deplorable.

Rarely has a presidential candidate been so candid and so obtuse at the same time, for “deplorable” is exactly what the left thinks of average Americans. And for that reason, Trump’s presidency cannot be allowed to succeed, even if sinking Trump means sinking the country. The left is willing to savage our economy, trash health care, weaken our national defense, and lose the fight against terrorism just to see that the deplorables are kept in their place. That is the central motive of the anti-Trump forces.

It is important to understand the true source of the left’s disdain. It has nothing to do with policy or the good of the country. It is, in effect, closely aligned with the psychology of racism – the need of defensive groups to transfer their uncertainties to an object of scorn.

This is a dangerous state of affairs. The left’s brazenness is something new, and something that holds the potential for great danger.

In order to remain a cohesive movement, leftism, which has no positive agenda, must continue to ramp up hatred of its opponents. It has come to resemble a “pack” motivated by instincts of power rather than a source of civil debate.

Chicago Tribune: The bill for treating a gunshot wound: $21,000 for the first 35 minutes – It is about the costs of gun violence as if it is the weapon used that is the problem. Why the medical expenses are so high and the role of government sponsored payments for those expenses in the costs are only considered to emphasize the problem. Then there is the elephant in the room:

The data are further confirmation of how skewed gun violence is along racial and socio-economic lines. Nearly two-thirds of the hospital inpatients treated for injuries suffered as a result of firearm assault were black males ages 15 to 44, the data showed.

That is the second part of the problem that is being ignored. Putting up gun laws is so easy and makes one feel so good it doesn’t matter if they have any impact or not. Trying to address the underlying problems is hard and brings the pain home in the form of dashed dreams and fantasies.

The Washington Examiner is showing its bias in asking for The whole truth. It is assuming it doesn’t have it. This is what someone does when they don’t get the answers they want:

Perhaps the only way for Trump to prevent an ever-expanding investigation, to keep things focused narrowly on questions of alleged collusion with Russia, and to make sure nobody gets dragged into side matters, is for all the president’s men to tell the whole truth rather than either to invite perjury investigations or to give technically true answers that actually conceal the real story and thus invite futher probing.

The fact is that the administration has been remarkably open and transparent. The fact is that witch hunts like the Russian Collusion Conspiracy are never prevented by reality and facts or even by a complete lack of foundation – as is readily visible in this case. For example:

This was not illegal, as far as we can tell, although seeking dirt from such a source was politically boneheaded and morally compromising. Nor is it illegal, unseemly though it is, to veil the truth in one’s public statements. Trump Jr. could even argue that he said nothing clearly false.

i.e. there is nothing there so we have to cast judgments such as “boneheaded and morally compromising.” The request for “the whole truth” is revealed as a never-ending demand for a falsehood that supports preconceived judgments and desires and a denial of reality. It’s gotcha’ politics.

Leave a Comment

An awareness of conflict

Starting point is at ace with Warden citing Evan Sayet: Donald Trump is America’s first wartime president in the Culture War – “why attempting to shame us for Trump’s lack of dignity isn’t having the effect they’d hoped it would.

“We Right-thinking people have tried dignity. There could not have been a man of more quiet dignity than George W. Bush as he suffered the outrageous lies and politically motivated hatreds that undermined his presidency. We tried statesmanship. Could there be another human being on this earth who so desperately prized “collegiality” as John McCain? We tried propriety – has there been a nicer human being ever than Mitt Romney? And the results were always the same.

“So, say anything you want about this president – I get it, he can be vulgar, he can be crude, he can be undignified at times. I don’t care. I can’t spare this man. He fights.”

Who controls the institutions in this country? The left does. All of them–the media (both news and entertainment), the schools, the government bureaucracy, the upper ranks of our military, most of the politicians, Wall Street, and all of our corporations.

That’s what we’re up against–terrorism from an opponent more powerful than us. And no, I’m not using that word rhetorically. They are literally engaging in terrorism, both physical and psychological to intimidate and silence opinions that they find disagreeable– a list which, by the way, is ever changing and expanding.

This is a different world now. Or maybe, we’re finally just perceiving it correctly. As I said in an earlier post, it isn’t one that I wish to live in.

Others are joining the fray. Ace: NRA Releases Blistering Attack Ad Against… the Washington Post – “It’s good that people are starting to understand this isn’t politics any longer; this is about whether democracy will even be allowed to continue.”

VDH: The Fifth American War – “The wars between Trump, the media, the deep state, and the progressive party — replete with charges and counter-charges of scandal, collusion, and corruption — are merely symptoms of a much larger fundamental and growing divide between Americans that is reaching a dangerous climax.” … “In sum, behind the daily hysterias over collusions, recusals, obstructions, and nullifications, there is an ongoing, often vicious war over the very nature and future of Western culture in general and America in particular.”

The lawyers are noticing. Paul Mirengoff: Leftist judges turn administrative law into a sham – “The phrase “you can’t make this stuff up” seems appropriate. Except that these two judges did.”

The ruling prompted a friend with at least three decades of experience practicing administrative law to say: “Administrative law is a sick joke.” Another friend with just as much experience in the field or more responded: “How does it feel to have devoted your whole adult life to a profession that is little more than a sham?”

There is an awareness of the conflict and the fact that it is about those things once assumed to be a part of a solid base.

Leave a Comment

War on many fronts

Stories this morning tell of engagement on many fronts. The ACLU, The Southern Poverty Law Center, and the American Psychiatric Association are all topics today.

Robert Knight: The ACLU’s attack on election integrity – “By attacking the presidential advisory commission, the organization tips its liberal hand.”

If you don’t think the Left is terrified by the prospect of clean voter rolls, you might not have heard about the latest ploy by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).

The ACLU has sued President Trump, Vice President Mike Pence and the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity, charging them with violating federal “transparency” laws.

Given the media-fed hysteria over Russia’s alleged tampering with last November’s election, you’d think progressives would welcome a thorough investigation. They claim loudly that vote fraud is just a myth, and that voter “suppression” is widespread, but they don’t want anyone actually investigating voter rolls and election records. Why not?

Washington Times: Restoration of the judiciary continues – “The Senate Judiciary Committee advances a slate of new judges.”

Restoring the federal judiciary to its constitutional moorings is what many Americans call Job 1, and it was on this issue they put aside their considerable reservations about Donald Trump, swallowed hard, considered the alternative, hoped for the best, and cast their votes for him. On this score, he has redeemed their faith.

Stephen B. Presse: Charging treason and ruining a republic – “Treason is defined very clearly in the Constitution, and Donald Trump Jr.’s actions don’t come close.”

Aside from the obvious implication that it might well be Mrs. Clinton who was acting adversely to the interests of the United States, and not Donald, Jr. (and just such a charge was levied by Peter Schweizer in his book “Clinton Cash: The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich” (2015)), those charging Donald, Jr. with treason betray an astonishing lack of understanding of the term.

but all of that misses the larger point about the silliness of invoking treason against the son of the president. Perspective is always cast on the present by looking to the past and, in particular by trying to understand the concerns of our framers.

As it turns out, those who put together the Constitution were deeply concerned with the abusive prosecution of treason by the British government. It was their understanding that “constructive treason” was the scourge of British subjects.

John Fund: Not All Foreign-Influence Scandals Are Created Equal – “Two decades ago, the media weren’t obsessed with Chinese interference in a presidential election.”

I’m glad the news media is pursuing the Trump–Russia scandal, but let’s not forget the differences between how they are covering Russia compared with how they reported a similar story — this one involving Communist China — that developed during Bill Clinton’s 1996 reelection campaign.

The sprawling fundraising scandal ultimately led to 22 guilty pleas on various violations of election laws. 

Indeed, much of the media basically gave the Clintons a pass on evidence that special-interest donors to the Clinton Foundation frequently managed to score favors from the State Department.

Instapundit: Haiti Official Who Exposed The Clinton Foundation Is Found Dead. – “Given his connections, his former position, and the whistle he was blowing, Eberwein’s death seems like a big enough story that you’d find it somewhere other than alt-news sites, but as I’m writing this post, the major news outlets have yet to touch it.”

Mark A. Hewitt: How the Left Hijacked the American Psychiatric Association and Normalized Personality Disorders – “The evidence is clear—the American Left succeeded in lobbying the American Psychiatric Association (APA) to eliminate some of the sexual identity disorders from their Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders(DSM).”

With the updated DSM-5, the APA voted against Dr. McHugh and his side, common sense, and biology.

The DSM, as the United States’ universal authority for psychiatric diagnoses, has been fully compromised and subject to the whims of an out of control Left-majority APA.

The American military used to go through great lengths to recruit, train, and employ men and women “of sound mind and body.” However, “there is no standardized mental assessment for people trying to enter the military. A bill before Congress may finally direct the U.S. military to screen individuals for mental issues before they are allowed to enlist. If the DSM remains DOD’s universal authority for psychiatric diagnoses, the sexual identity disorders, such as transgenderism, will not be considered as mental disorders. What will they test? The DSM is the standard reference.

The Trump Administration needs to decertify the compromised DSM as the universal authority for psychiatric diagnoses in the United States and reject its authority as the source reference for the Obama policy of transgenders in the military. To do anything less is collaborating and promoting mental disorders.

John Hinderaker: Is Global Warming Alarmism A Complete Fraud? – “I usually try to give global warming hysterics the benefit of the doubt–sincere but misguided, not good at math, unacquainted with the Earth’s highly variable climatic history, and so on. But sometimes data come along that make that sympathetic attitude hard to sustain.” Another story in the news was about how Miami will be underwater ‘real soon now’.

Judith Curry: Alarm about alarmism – “The climate change debate has entered what we might call the “Campfire Phase”, in which the goal is to tell the scariest story.” – Oren Cass (twitter)

In terms of what is technically wrong with the NYMag article, Andy Revkin pretty much sums it up perfectly with this tweet:

Scariest stuff isn’t worst-case science; it’s bad fit of @deepuncertainty & time scales with indiv. & collective human risk/response traits.

Richard Fernandez: The Shift – “Mark Leibovitch, chief national correspondent for the NYT Magazine recorded his impressions of Washington DC, the town that melted down.”

The significance of Washington’s meltdown will hang on how adaptable the American politics proves to be. The Resistance so far has been less a call to rebuild Washington than the scream of someone having his leg amputated without anesthesia. The GOP side is behaving like survivors shouting out a headcount after a collision to see who’s left alive. Among the Dems only Sanders is faintly stirring under the wreckage but ever more faintly.

IBD on a fundamental problem: Social Security And Medicare Are In Worse Shape Than You Think – “The Social Security report finds that the “trust fund” will run out of money in just 17 years. The news only gets worse from there.”

Thomas Lifson: The Left is Already Preparing Tomorrow’s Fake News – “A reader strolling down the street in Chicago spotted a recruiting poster for “Activist Jobs,” a bit of an oxymoron.”

Goal-oriented acts that are compensated are called “work,” not “activism.” But in the photograph below, the two different categories of endeavor are conflated:

The confusion is deliberate and speaks to a larger strategy of the Left, also based on deception.

the use of activism, video drama, and demonstrations by a political movement led to victory, though in this case it was tyranny in the form of a brutal Communist dictatorship, not justice, that triumphed. From the standpoint of the hard left, this was a feature, not a defect.

It has worked on issue after issue. And here we are today with transgender bathrooms and other ornaments of the progressive worldview imposed on the public.

However, with the emergence of Fox News and the internet, alternative narratives gained enough prominence that the propaganda machine started failing, losing its hegemony at first, and at an increasing pace, its credibility.

When candidate Trump popularized the iconic expression “fake news,” he coined a meme that served to throw off balance not just the ostensible current target CNN, but the entire progressive media establishment. Their ability to manufacture outrage has drastically declined along with their credibility.

The progressive worldview is entirely based on fantasies about human nature. From there they go on to create entered systems (communism, socialism, and progressivism) based on the idea of perfecting mankind through the wisdom of the state. Gramsci taught the communists to grab control of education and the media, where they create imaginary worlds for the masses to consume. This technique has been in place for decades, winning its battles no matter which party controls the White House or Congress. Politics is downstream from culture, as Andrew Breitbart taught us.

By breaking up the Gramsciites’ control of mass media, technology has fundamentally damaged the Left’s ability to impose its narratives. And now they face a president who uses the tools of that technology to communicate around them directly to the public in the millions.

Yet because they have no idea what else to do, they compulsively return to the fantasy narrative of Russian “collusion,” and will persist until it backfires, exposing the web of connections of Hillary Clinton, the green movement, and many others, to the Kremlin.

Jazz Shaw: For liberals, the shadow of Donald Trump looms far larger than the man – “it hasn’t been hard for me to pick up on the trend towards doom and gloom among liberal “thought leaders” this year.”

Yes, clearly President Trump has ruined everything so you can all mope about, dreaming of the beautiful American landscape which has fallen into ruin. But just to make sure that we’re all on the same page here, precisely what is it that’s changed since noon on January 20th of this year? I’m not trying to pester you too much during your period of mourning, but could you provide me with some specifics?

The idea that these are “dark days” and that things have gotten so much worse is entirely a matter of perception, driven largely by the media.

Angry and depressed people tend to die younger and experience a host of health problems which they might have otherwise avoided. Try to relax a bit and wait until the President actually does some of the things you’re so sure that he’s planning before you spiral into despair.

Busy busy busy

 

Leave a Comment

Corrupting the professions

Fist it was journalism. Then the judiciary. Now it’s psychiatry. Jessica Chasmar: Psychiatry professors call on Congress to ‘end the Trump presidency’ – “Psychiatry professors from several Ivy League universities who argue Donald Trump is unfit for the presidency are calling on Congress to take “lawful steps” to remove him from office.” There is so much wrong here it is hard to tell where to start. Snap judgments without a proper examination are antithetical to any medical profession. Psychiatry emphasizes the need for the practitioner to know himself because the very nature of their field involves the working of the mind. To conclude anyone “unfit” as here is as backwards as assuming guilt without any evidence of crime or, say, assuming collusion with Russia without any evidence that such activity occurred.

Clarice Feldman: The Russian Collusion Story: The Acme of Fake News – “the non-stop media promotion of some nefarious scheme between Russia and Trump does not pass even the most cursory forensic examination, proving once again in the age of fake news, you cannot remain a passive consumer of news.” Citing Richard Fernandez, the core issue is “finding new energy supplies to 1) keep the price of oil low enough to contain Russia (and Islamism); and 2) adapting to a disruptive information revolution no one can seem to control.” and that makes it the Trump Russian Collusion Fantasy.

If you’re looking for collusion with Russia, it is not to be found in the Trump Tower meeting. Paul Mirengoff of Powerline details the Russian efforts through environmental groups — at best Stalin’s “useful idiots” — to tamp down US energy production.

Just as Fernandez detailed the rise of Samizdat in Russia as the official press was uniformly distrusted, the growth on alternate media in the U.S. is disrupting the old news models.

Nothing so illustrates why the media has deservedly lost all credibility than it’s unending, overdone effort to fit any action on the part of the President or those around him into a narrative of Russia somehow colluding with him to defeat Hillary.

isn’t it curious that those who claim to consider a meeting to listen to opposition research, bought hook line and sinker the ridiculous-on-its-face Dossier concted by GPS against Trump, a far more likely piece of Russian intel disinformation? Or why they ignore DNC officials meeting with Ukrainian government officials for dirt on then Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort.

In any event, Legal commentators on both sides of the aisle have confirmed there was nothing illegal about the meeting. I suppose we can’t expect much more of a press corps so stupid it mistakes the Star Spangled Banner for France’s La Marseillaise, and Bastille Day for the 100th Anniversary of the U.S. entry in WW I.

You’ll just have to work harder in the face of such ignorance and bias to find out what you need to know.

Ginni Thomas: News Orgs Keep Trying To Take Down Trump, But He’s ‘Kryptonite To The Smear’ – “Many in the media are working with progressive interests to undermine and remove the president by using mass manipulation cloaked as reporting.”

Media entities she has admired, such as the New York Times, Washington Post and CNN, have suspended their journalistic rules, and made excessive reporting mistakes and errors, because they have decided President Donald Trump is antithetical to their beliefs.

Using emails exposed from FOIA requests or the WikiLeaks dump of emails leaked in 2016, Attkisson’s new New York Times bestseller, called “The Smear: How Shady Political Operatives and Fake News Control What you See, What you Think and How You Vote,” is a damning indictment of the media.

Erickson: Were Democrats Working With The Russians? – “If, as the Obama Administration claimed, the Russians merely wanted to undermine American trust in the democratic process, would not they work both sides against each other? It is looking more and more like that may be the case.”

Suddenly it seems more than a coincidence that Prevezon’s lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya, has a meeting with Donald Trump, Jr. at the time Fusion GPS is putting together a dossier claiming the Trump campaign had been meeting with Russians. But it gets even more tangled than that. … Natalia Veselnitskaya’s visa for entry into the United States had expired by 2016.

It could just be a coincidence that the Obama Administration let Natalia Veselnitskaya enter the United States to meet with Donald Trump, Jr. It could also be a coincidence that her client, Prevezon, hired Fusion GPS to help Russia at the same time Fusion GPS was compiling a dossier on Donald Trump claiming Trump was working with the Russians. And it could be a coincidence that the FBI considered hiring the man who helped Fusion GPS compile that dossier.

It could all be a coincidence, or it could start to paint a new picture. The Russians could have been masterfully playing both sides so that whoever won, Russia came out on top. Mrs. Clinton, after all, claims she reset the relationship with Russia.

Scott Johnson: A witch hunt? – a response to Mona Charen’s “16 Things You Must Believe to Buy the ‘Witch Hunt’ Russia Narrative”. The 16 “shards” are what those suspicious of the President base their allegations of lies. As Johnson notes, there is suspicion and allegation but very very little substance. He says “I look to administration policies to ascertain the reality of Trump’s views” and that look tends to contradict the collusion idea.

My response: I take it that you are alluding to President Trump has characterization of the investigation conducted under the auspices of Special Counsel Robert Mueller as a witch hunt, or a “WITCH HUNT.” I think Trump is right. Here I would cite the case made by Andrew McCarthy in the June 21 column “Mueller’s empire.” Andy’s column makes several important points on which I have slightly expanded

I think the Democrats and their media adjunct reject the legitimacy of the Trump presidency. I think they have jointly undertaken the project of removing Trump from office. Trump’s critique of CNN et al. has much of substance to it and is a legitimate form of political self-defense.

Neo-neocon is, understandably, surprised that Snopes’ Dan MacGuill would take up The Lies of Donald Trump’s Critics, and How They Shape His Many Personas – “An in-depth analysis of the false allegations and misleading claims made against the 45th President since his inauguration.” This is in Snopes line. It’s just that it is going upstream a bit more than usual.

Over the past two years, many thousands of broadcast hours and probably millions of words have been devoted to Donald Trump’s relationship with the truth. Equally, the President has made accusations of dishonesty and bias against the media and his political opponents a central part of his persona and presidency.

What lies are told about the President? Is he lying when he makes these allegations? In a feverish atmosphere of claim and counterclaim, when everyone seems to reflexively accuse everyone else of “fake news”, it can be difficult to know what’s what.

most of the falsehoods levelled against Trump fall into one or more of four categories, each of them drawing from and feeding into four public personas inhabited by the President. …

Some of these claims are downright fake, entirely fabricated by unreliable or dubious web sites and presented as satire, or otherwise blatantly false. But the rest — some of which have gained significant traction and credibility from otherwise serious people and organizations — provide a fascinating insight into the tactics and preoccupations of the broad anti-Trump movement known as “the Resistance,” whether they were created by critics of the President or merely shared by them.

Generally speaking, we discovered that they are characterized and driven by four types of errors of thought:

Infused throughout almost all these claims, behind their successful dissemination, is confirmation bias

In some ways, these sorts of massive exaggerations and gross distortions are even more corrosive and destructive than fake news about diarrhea on the golf course, because they bear some distant relationship with the truth.

Snopes also refers to their archive on Trump with a lot more about the news reports and Trump’s statements. It seems to be very short on lies from the President if lies are defined as an attempt to deceive. As for confirmation bias, here’s another example.

Jonathan H. Adler: ‘Why have so many . . . embraced such a transparently flawed book?’ – “To date, most of the criticism of Nancy MacLean’s “Democracy in Chains: The Deep History of the Radical Right’s Stealth Plan for America” has come from libertarian writers and academics. Not anymore.”

Henry Farrell and Steven Teles have an extended essay on Vox.com discussing the book and the broader phenomenon of sloppy, conspiratorial thinking about political and intellectual movements.

Why have so many left-wing readers embraced such a transparently flawed book? The most persuasive explanation is that MacLean confirms and extends their deep preexisting suspicions.

Another critical behavior seen in Adler’s comments and citations is the bias towards ‘both sides do it’ assuming equality of integrity. That assumption bypasses the core issue in why MacLean’s book is flawed and why there is a problem in political loggerheads. Consider, for instance, “The Trump administration’s combination of sleaze and regulatory power” tossed off as an axiom. No specifics. No referent. No measurement scale. No awareness of just how dishonest such allegations happen to be. “deep preexisting suspicions” indeed! 

Leave a Comment

totally unhinged

Jonah Goldberg: Climate-change fearmongering has turned totally unhinged – “One of the hallmarks of the “Ugly American” is the habit of thinking foreigners will understand what you’re saying if you just shout it louder and louder. The Ugly Environmentalist does something similar.”

A recent New York magazine cover story on climate change assured readers that all of the previous climate-change alarmism was too tepid. Basically, by the end of the century, the living will envy the dead and much of the planet will be uninhabitable or a re-enactment of a “Mad Max” movie.

The more you sound like some cowbell-wielding street preacher wearing a sandwich board that says “The End is Nigh!” the more likely people will ignore you. Particularly if your last few terrifying predictions didn’t pan out.

It’s remarkable how many of the people who rightly recoil in horror at the idea of using, say, the war on terror to justify curtailing civil liberties have no such response when someone floats similar ideas for the war on climate change.

I believe, along with the late economist Julian Simon, that humans are the ultimate resource. We solve problems, and I think we’ll solve climate change, too.

Matthew Continetti: The One Sentence That Explains Washington Dysfunction – “The political class never expected Donald Trump to become president.”

The other day Senator Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania explained why Republicans are having such trouble with health care. Speaking at a town hall during the July 4 recess, Toomey said, “I didn’t expect Donald Trump to win. I think most of my colleagues didn’t. So we didn’t expect to be in this situation.”

And because the political elite held this view with such self-assurance, with all the egotism and snobbery and moral puffery and snarkiness that distinguishes itself as a class, it did not spend more than a second, if that, thinking through the possible consequences of a Trump victory.

Among those consequences: The expectation that Republicans might actually try to keep the promises they’ve made to voters over the last eight years.

A corollary to the widespread belief that Trump would lose was that criticizing him had no cost.

Well, joke’s on us, because not only did Trump become president, he knows how to hold a grudge.

Deroy Murdock: The vote fraud that Democrats refuse to see – “As the bulletproof evidence of fraud adds up, they still claim, “There’s nothing to see here.”

This pathological denial is even more intense, now that President Trump has taken vote fraud seriously enough to appoint a bipartisan panel to get to the bottom of it.

Never mind, leading Leftists insist. The issue is bogus, and the commission is evil.

Craftier liberals have inched away from the baseless “Vote fraud = Loch Ness Monster” argument. Now, some claim, vote fraud is not “widespread.”

John Sexton: Code Pink activist who disrupted Sessions’ hearing gets new trial – “Judge Morin tossed the case because of something that didn’t happen.” Another case of a political judge letting the law go by the board for his political ideologies?

David Prentice: The Mystery of the Russia Collusion Derangement Continues – “It’s like a class B horror flick. The undead just keep coming.”

Nothing stops them. They are unceasing in their bloodlust, supernaturally strong as they keep going, nothing kills them.

Chief in the minds of many is the question, does anyone actually believe this crazy narrative as it becomes a class C movie? Does anyone actually believe that the President of the United States or his staff, colluded with the Russians to steal the election from Hillary Clinton? The surface answer is, no, no one can really believe something that inane for so long without one shred, or hint of evidence that it is true. That only happens in class D movies.

How do we reconcile the haughty superiority complex of the left with the increasingly obvious nothingnotevenveggie-burger of the Russian narrative?

We can’t really. It’s a mystery. One that’s very deep, complex, and somewhat incomprehensible.

Because psychosis is serious. Because delusion is destructive. Because denial is, as the saying goes, not just a river in Egypt. And the mystery of how this idiotic, laughable and ludicrous narrative survives is important to solve.

So how do we explain this mysterious psychotic delusion?

At this point, it’s not possible. Theories abound. Many of them are true. One can blame Clinton bitterness, Obama weaponizing the government, the deep state fighting Trump, the Democrats gone mad, the media following them all over the cliff, the democrat base requiring blood for the loss. So much craziness, so little time.

One thing is for certain. This irrationality should stop.

The one thing that is no mystery: Trump’s agenda is what America wants, and expects. If you do not deliver it, you can kiss your power good bye.

How do you stop irrationality? What do you do about it? What happens if nothing is done? Think, maybe, Venezuela?

Leave a Comment

Big bro may think it a crime – for you, anyway.

Ralph Z. Hallow: Trump faces double standard from left-wing media, Democrats – “President Trump is facing the double standard with which the left-wing press and Democrats have been soiling American politics for many years.” A primary indicator in the latest case is just how fast some take to their moral high horse and call DT Junior dumb or similar. In doing so they are acknowledging no breach of law, ethics, or morality but just have to express their hate.

Absurdity is now the norm in the left’s drive to undermine the public’s confidence in the institutions that have made this the go-to country for seekers of opportunity and freedom all over the world for more than two centuries.

Eager to convict a Republican of violating laws that exist only in minds of Democrats and their spokesmen in the press, Democrats in Congress held hands and agreed it’s not whether but by how much the Trump family has sold out America.

Expecting Democrats like Mr. Wyden and Mr. Moulton to grasp the absurdity of criminalizing everyday candidate-voter interaction is, of course, akin to setting out to draw bathwater from the Sinai Desert. You don’t get the water and you look foolish for trying.

The meeting wasn’t illegal. It wasn’t an immoral encounter. Failing to get available dirt on the opposition is what’s immoral if not outright criminally negligent in politics – not just here, but everywhere. That’s why Messrs. Manafort and Kushner didn’t and shouldn’t have steered Donald Jr. away from the meeting. It’s the calculating Democrats and news media and the gullible Republicans in the amen chorus of Trump critics who labeled as dumb or felonious what is in fact simply the Trump trademarked violation of political correctness and Washington’s standard operating procedure BTE (Before Trump Era).

The Democrats-news media-Never Trump GOP axis is trying to kill the Trump presidency in its first year. May this unholy alliance go the way of that other axis of 72 years ago.

Eugene Volokh takes up the legal questions in wondering Can it be a crime to do opposition research by asking foreigners for information? – “Foreigners who aren’t U.S. citizens or U.S. permanent residents, the argument goes, are barred from providing candidates any “thing of value” in connection with any American election campaign.”

Yet that, it seems to me, can’t be right. It would raise obvious First Amendment problems: First, noncitizens, and likely even non-permanent-residents, in the United States have broad First Amendment rights. See Bridges v. Wixon, 326 U.S. 135 (1945) (“freedom of speech and of press is accorded aliens residing in this country”); Underwager v. Channel 9 Australia, 69 F.3d 361 (9th Cir. 1995) (“We conclude that the speech protections of the First Amendment at a minimum apply to all persons legally within our borders,” including ones who are not permanent residents).

Second, Americans have the right to receive information even from speakers who are entirely abroad. See Lamont v. Postmaster General, 381 U.S. 301 (1965). Can Americans — whether political candidates or anyone else — really be barred from asking questions of foreigners, just because the answers might be especially important to voters?

Patricia McCarthy: The Left Media’s Extraordinary Popular Delusions – “That the left is suffering from a psychic break is clearer than ever these past few days.”

David Archibald: Never Go Full California – “It used to be said that Australia was usually 5 years behind the US in adopting new trends; in turn the US was led by what happened in California.”

The closest historical example of what Australia is doing to itself now is the 1856 cattle-killing frenzy of the Xhosa tribe in what is now South Africa. Briefly, a teenage girl named Nongqawuse and her friend Nombanda went to fetch water. Upon returning, she said that had met the spirits of three of her ancestors who had told her that the Xhosa people should destroy their crops and kill their cattle. In return the spirits would sweep the British settlers into the sea. Then their granaries would fill again and their kraals would have more and better cattle. The cattle-killing frenzy that followed killed between 300,000 and 400,000 head of cattle. In the resulting famine, the population of the province dropped from 105,000 to fewer than 27,000.

Michael Tracey: The Basic Formula For Every Shocking Russia/Trump Revelation – “The overall political climate gets further degraded and warped without any commensurate upside.”

Jim Geraghty: Trump’s VA Secretary Is Off to a Fast Start – “Change is coming to the most maligned of cabinet agencies, even if big fights still lie ahead.”

Leave a Comment

The nub of the problem

The Washington Times has a full slate this morning. An editorial: Treason, anyone? – “The Democratic hysteria in pursuit of Trump slips into Nut Country.”

Hysteria is never a substitute for argument, even when the prey is Donald Trump. This is a caution lost on the hysterics who, try as they might, cannot dispatch the president to the island of lost presidents. So they keep raising the ante of speech and fantasy.

The latest accusation against the Trump administration is treason, a serious crime indeed, and one that some of the unhinged Democrats, locked in the agonies of Trump Derangement Syndrome, are throwing around as if they know what they’re talking about.

Invocation of the word “treason” is nonsense, as any jackleg lawyer or U.S. senator should know.

Jennifer Harper: Media fixated by Trump ‘bombshell’ du jour – “The news media has been on a never-ending quest to build a case for the impeachment of President Trump for many months.”

The current edition is centered on Donald Trump Jr. following a New York Times story published this week titled simply “Trump’s son met with Russian lawyer after being promised damaging information on Clinton.” The account, written by three reporters, is too detailed and baroque to go into here. Suffice it to say, the story launched a now-familiar press feeding frenzy.

Rowan Scarborough: Democrats intentionally used disinformation from Russia to attack Trump, campaign aides – “the public record shows that Democrats have willfully used Moscow disinformation to influence the presidential election against Donald Trump and attack his administration.”

Some Democrats have widely circulated the discredited information. Mr. Steele was paid by the Democrat-funded opposition research firm Fusion GPS with money from a Hillary Clinton backer. Fusion GPS distributed the dossier among Democrats and journalists. The information fell into the hands of the FBI, which used it in part to investigate Mr. Trump’s campaign aides.

Mr. Steele makes clear that his unproven charges came almost exclusively from sources linked to the Kremlin and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Jazz Shaw: When it comes to obstruction, Chuck Schumer is playing the long game – “There’s always a bit of gamesmanship over any “controversial” nominations, but as the Wall Street Journal points out this week the problem is no longer with the White House.”

The final point being brought up by the Journal is equally disturbing. The more time Schumer can chew up with these low level appointments, the less time there will be for any of the rest of the President’s agenda to be acted on. Since the only real game plan that the Democrats have right now is to #RESIST! Trump, this is hardly coincidental. The WSJ editors open their piece with a demand for the GOP leadership to, “restore normal order.” That sounds good in theory, but as long as Schumer is following the rules currently on the books (which were written when nobody even imagined this level of obstructionism) it’s difficult to see what can be done. This is not the New York Senator’s first trip to the rodeo and he knows how to play this game as ugly as possible.

James Robbins: Donald Trump Jr. was within his rights to meet with Russian lawyer – “those who are dead-set on invalidating the election results by other means still persisted. Lacking evidence of actual crimes, they have been forced to drum up narratives around more nebulous, subjective offenses.”

This story is hardly as inane as the collective furor that has been generated around the Russia issue writ large. … The situation became even murkier when it was revealed that Veselnitskaya had hired an investigator from Fusion GPS,

Ed Rogers: The media’s mass hysteria over ‘collusion’ is out of control – “The wailing from the media and their allies about Donald Trump Jr.’s meeting with some “Kremlin-connected Russian lawyer” (whatever that means) may be the last gasp of this faux scandal. Good riddance.”

As I have written before, there are always people hovering around campaigns trying to peddle information and traffic in supposed silver bullets. There should be nothing to report on when a private citizen who works at a campaign takes a meeting with a friend of a friend offering information about an opponent. And yet, the media wants to make it a smoking gun.

Anyway, Trump Jr. took the one-off meeting, and nothing happened. Is that not proof of non-collusion in and of itself? If you choose to believe otherwise, your disdain for President Trump is getting the best of you and you need help.

For many in the media and elsewhere, the collective grievances that they have against Trump personally, the White House as a whole and Trump’s policies somehow justify their zealous promotion of the “collusion scandal.” But not because the story is valid. Rather, the media know that they are not getting to Trump with anything else. Today, much of the “news coverage” of Trump and Co. is about payback. The media thinks they aren’t getting the truth and so they don’t have to deliver it either. It is a bad cycle that is not working for the White House or the media. With this much intensity, it is hard to see how this ends well.

The Anatomy of Fake News Wrapped in One Short Paragraph [Warden] – “Now there’s an interesting series of words, full of all kinds of insinuation intended to lead unaware readers to particular conclusions. Let’s break this down.” Shaken. Struggled. Meddling. Say, what?

And so there you have it. A series of vague, non-sourced, non-evidenced statements mashed together into one stinking pile of obliquely implied wrongdoing.

This is #FakeNews from top to bottom. This is how they do it.

But they aren’t getting away with it any longer, are they? People are wise to the game and the trust that they lost will never be regained.

Jack Hellner: What counts as treason differs depending on the letter after your name – “We should all remember that this really has nothing to do with Russia.”

Democrats can do whatever they want with foreign countries, including enemies like Iran and Russia, including giving them uranium. But any Republican, especially someone connected with Trump, had better not ever talk to these people, even when he gets nothing in return, or there will be continuous investigations and wall-to-wall reporting.

Charles Hurt: Long live President Trumpopov! – “You don’t have to be a seasoned Kremlinologist steeped in the chicanery of klepto-thugocracies to realize that America really dodged a bullet in last year’s presidential election.”

The Clintons would NEVER search for dirt against a political opponent. Just ask Bernie Sanders, Vince Foster or Barack Obama. (The conversation with one of those three would be a trifle one-sided.) Or Monica Lewinsky!

And if they ever did accidentally stumble upon the dirt of an opponent, the Clintons would be TOTALLY forthcoming about it when asked about it. It is the Clinton way. Just ask Ken Starr.

And, famously, President Obama would never stoop so low as to allow the world’s most powerful espionage apparatus to spy on his political opponents — except for all the times he did. In the past year. That we know about.

Yes, this is how bad things had become around here. The political establishment is now so lazy, self-serving and entrenched that spying on political opponents and suggesting they be put do death is only natural for them. This is just how things work in a klepto-thugogracy.

Clifford D. May: Celebrating the values of the West is right because they’re the best – “Trump’s campaign for the survival of Western civilization drives the so-called ‘progressives’ crazy.”

This truth should be held self-evident: Freedom, human, civil and individual rights, representative government, separation of church and state, the rule of law, pluralism and tolerance are all Western concepts, rooted in classical Greece and Rome and developed in the Enlightenment. The American Revolution began a historic attempt to build a nation-state based on them.

It required a revolution in moral thinking to come to the conclusion that slavery, bigotry and discrimination are evils. That revolution began within the West and was led by such individuals as William Wilberforce who — trigger warning — was a white, evangelical Christian.

“Our own fight for the West does not begin on the battlefield,” the president added last week. “It begins with our minds, our wills, and our souls.” Yes, it does, and that, I’m afraid is the nub of the problem.

Valerie Richardson: Maryland attorney general pushes Republican bounds of lawsuits against Trump – “With regard to what we see Brian Frosh doing, I mean, he’s suing President Trump for everything from soup to nuts,” said Mr. Shoemaker, himself a lawyer. “Every week, it’s something with him.” But it’s a holy cause, you see. However, the real question is state AG’s using public money to support litigation that is based on political ideology. That is corruption.

Democratic prosecutors have defended their aggressive legal activism as necessary to guard against what they describe as the Trump administration’s irresponsible deregulation efforts and unpredictable administrative impulses.

Certainly Democrats aren’t the first to take to the courts to oppose an unfriendly White House. … The difference lies in the sheer volume of the Democratic challenges as well as the rationale behind the litigation.

While Republicans had fought to stop the federal government from encroaching on state authority, the Democrats want to safeguard federal regulations and programs, not thwart them, said Andrew M. Grossman, a partner with BakerHostetler in Washington, who was involved in the Clean Power Plan litigation.

Connecticut lawyer Margaret A. Little said the result is that Democratic prosecutors are abusing their enforcement power to advance a policy agenda.

Rep. Ron Estes: Americans want results, not resistance – “The takeaway from my race and the other special elections is voters want Congress to solve problems and pass reforms that improve their daily lives.”

The takeaway from my race and the other special elections is voters want Congress to solve problems and pass reforms that improve their daily lives. They want practical results. The House has already passed healthcare reform, and I’m confident a bill will make it to the president’s desk. In the meantime, Congress can engineer tax reform by following a blueprint similar to one embraced by House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady, R-Texas, House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wisconsin, and many of my colleagues.

That blueprint is based on three principles: competitiveness, fairness, and simplicity.

The Representative is right.

Leave a Comment

Beating that dead horse

Wesley Pruden: Another dead horse, another beating – “Dead horses are useless to most folks, but Democrats, rendering plants and certain newspapers are determined to follow the stink.”

The magpie media just can’t let go of the Trump-Russian collusion story, no matter how many unearthed horses turn out to be dead. Maybe there really is the story of the century lurking in the shadow of Donald Trump, but this one ain’t it. The New York Times used to be better than this.

John Sexton: Professor Weinstein’s sin: He stepped outside the progressive bubble and spoke to Tucker Carlson – “Weinstein was asked a total of five questions and points out that none of his answers were particularly inflammatory. What did happen though was a big uptick in the number of people outside the campus bubble who saw what was actually happening at Evergreen.”

Zimmerman concludes the piece by noting that there were reasonable, rational people on the right who contacted Weinstein after his Fox News appearance to tell him that, while they disagreed with his politics, they appreciated his tone and his approach. Zimmerman writes, “Real connections with people were forged and those connections improved understanding.”

There’s a certain irony in the fact that a faculty heavily engaged in social criticism of all kinds was unable to criticize even the worst behavior when it took place among their own little corner of society. Instead, they attacked the one person who dared to step outside the campus bubble and say what was obvious to everyone else: Something was badly amiss at Evergreen College.

Beclowning Nevada. Ed Morrissey: Nevada governor: State of emergency over a massive shortage of … – “In other words, Nevada is about to declare a state of emergency over a lack of marijuana — and are doing so for the children. Man, I never thought I’d hear that argument.”

Jazz Shaw: Media gears up to combat voting integrity laws – “These arguments have long since sunk to the level of tiresome nonsense. It’s yet another case where we see liberals fighting against something which would hopefully reduce crime. How anyone with a pro-crime platform can continue to attract as many voters as they seem to do remains a mystery for the ages.” and then there’s San Francisco and California take additional steps toward lawlessness – “Clearly San Francisco is upping their game when it comes to defying the law here.”

Leave a Comment

The Propaganda Campaign

Robert Knight: The real news from Poland – “Many in the media continue to paint the president as only a bungling incompetent boob.”

Unless you went to some lengths to access President Trump’s stunning address in Warsaw, Poland on Thursday instead of relying on media coverage, you missed a remarkable event.

The reason you may have missed this is that the media continues to paint Mr. Trump in the worst possible light. Their zeal to produce fake news about him is shameless and laughable.

Contrasted with Mr. Obama’s international Muslim apology tour in June 2009, Mr. Trump celebrated the shared Judeo-Christian values sustaining the two nations. In fact, he referenced God 10 times.

In an editorial criticizing Mr. Trump for defending “the West,” The Washington Post declared that “human rights, freedom and the dignity of every individual” spring from no particular culture.

While the fake news media portrayed President Trump as a jingoist and bumpkin, he was delivering lines like this: “You were supported in that victory over communism by a strong alliance of free nations in the West that defied tyranny. Now, among the most committed members of the NATO Alliance, Poland has resumed its place as a leading nation of a Europe that is strong, whole, and free.

A lot of people have urged Mr. Trump to act more “presidential.”

In Warsaw this week, he did just that. And the media cannot stand it.

Don Thieme: The Historical Resonance Of Trump’s Speech In Poland – “It is hard to send a message that recalls history, reassures partners and allies, and cautions rivals, but in less than an hour in front of a monument on Krasinski Square, Trump did just that.”

Ralph Z. Hallow: Why the American press thought it heard high-pitched animal sounds coming out of Warsaw – “Only Western Europeans wrote symphonies. That, as any Japanese, Chinese, Iraqi, Indian classical musician in America will tell you, has one hell of a lot to do with everything.”

Mr. Capehart, Mr. Zeleny and many dozens of other talented writers and talkers for U.S. newspapers, magazines and TV networks have declared war on American exceptionalism in favor of they know not what.

But they are the vanguard of a socialist, collectivist, internationalist movement that will take America to the same grave to which all previous great powers in world history have been dragged.

Mr. Trump thinks we in particular and the world in general owe to Western Europe more than can be enumerated here, from the Magna Carta, the Renaissance, Reformation, industrial Revolution, astronomy and on and on. That is what Mr. Trump was people-whistling about in Poland.

Tom Cotton and Mike Lee: Drones and federalism – Why the states must lead on drone regulation. Along with Sen. Dianne Feinstein (CA) and Sen. Richard Blumenthal (CT) it is an interesting idea.

The bill, titled the Drone Federalism Act, would recognize the right of states and local communities to govern drones within a specified zone of authority, the airspace under 200 feet. The FAA would still be responsible for the overall safety of the skies. But at this low altitude, state and local governments would be able to set guidelines for the “reasonable time, manner, and place” of drone flights.

The bill also preserves the rights of every American by reaffirming the long held doctrine that owners control the immediate 200 feet of airspace above their property. The FAA would be prevented from authorizing the operation of an unmanned aircraft in the immediate reaches of airspace above a property without permission of the owner. Hobbyists would also be required so secure permission from the owner before flying a drone within 200 feet above a private held property.

Linda Sarsour’s Call For ‘Jihad’ Against President Trump Is A Call For Treason – “Islamic activist Linda Sarsour’s recent comments can leave a person with the impression that she is inciting sedition from Muslims in America.”

Islamic activist Linda Sarsour, co-chair of the 2017 women’s march, says she is “outraged” every single morning when she wakes up and remembers who is in the White House, referring to the president of the United States, Donald Trump. Speaking to the Islamic Society of North America, she recently made several astonishing statements, the totality of which can leave a person with the impression that Sarsour is inciting sedition from Muslims in America.

VDH in IBD: Will California Ever Thrive Again? – “The basket of California state taxes — sales, income and gasoline — rates among the highest in the U.S. Yet California roads and K-12 education rank near the bottom.”

The result is Connecticut and Alabama combined in one state. A house in Menlo Park may sell for more than $1,000 a square foot. In Madera three hours away, the cost is about one-tenth of that.

In response, state government practices escapism, haggling over transgendered restroom issues and the aquatic environment of a 3-inch baitfish rather than dealing with a sinking state.

And if faculty economists at the University of California at Berkeley keep hectoring the state about fixing income inequality, they might first acknowledge that the state pays them more than $300,000 per year — putting them among the top 2% of the university’s salaried employees.

Elites need to go back and restudy the state’s can-do confidence of the 1950s and 1960s to rediscover good state government — at least if everyday Californians are ever again to have affordable gas, electricity and homes, safe roads and competitive schools.

Herschel Smith: When Knives Are Illegal – “I called Lawyer after Lawyer and heard the same thing, the Law does not matter.” … but … “And in case I haven’t mentioned it enough times, every real man carries a knife all of the time.”

Leave a Comment

Class act.

Gateway Pundit: Saturday, President Trump picked up the hat of a Marine that was blown off due to the turbulence from the President’s helicopter.

Andrew Thomas: The left’s war on Christianity and why it hates Trump – “In contemporary America, Democrats have become congruent with the left, and the belief that the government owns us is a pervasive sentiment.”

Why is this? Democrats, as a political party, have literally denounced religion, particularly Christianity. At that same Convention in 2012, the delegates filled the arena with loud booing during the attempt to reinstate the word “God” into the Democratic Party platform.

Persecution of Christians was practically Obama administration policy, including lawsuits of Christians refusing to subordinate their beliefs to government mandates.

Then along came Donald Trump. He does not believe in big government. He dislikes politicians, regulations, and bureaucracy. The people he has hired in his administration have similar beliefs. The Republicans, who hold majorities in both houses of Congress, also believe in smaller government (for the most part).

The American left has shown itself to be dangerously unstable. For them, politics is not a trivial pursuit, it is a deadly serious bloodsport, and they play to win. On the other side, Trump is playing political “rope-a-dope”.

Are human rights endowed by our Creator, or bestowed by government? That is the basic question and conflict in America. In order to resurrect their government god, the Dems must destroy our Creator. But first, they must destroy our President.

Jazz Shaw provides the low-down on another fake meme: World in crisis after Ivanka Trump briefly sits in for POTUS at G-20 – “Did you happen to hear the latest portents of doom and disastrous tidings out of the G-20 summit?”

So this was quite the disaster, eh? Imagine the nerve of the President not only abandoning his important duties, but letting one of his children take his place. It was an insult to the assemblage. Or… perhaps not. Someone at Bloomberg actually took a moment to examine the situation and found that there was nothing to see here and Trump was simply doing what many of the other assembled leaders had done throughout the day.

Oh… and why did President Trump “step away” as the Washington Post describes it? Bathroom break? Just bored with the proceedings and wanted to check on the baseball scores? Nope. Bloomberg had that angle covered as well. “Donald Trump’s daughter, Ivanka, took his seat at a Group of 20 meeting table in Hamburg, sitting in for the president when he stepped away for one-on-one meetings with world leaders.”

That was immediately followed by a Peter Drucker quote in the feed list: “Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.”

Patterico shows how the ‘other side’ sees it: Stephen Hayes: Trump Caved to Putin – “So yesterday a wily former KGB agent got over two hours to have a crack at a simpleton who knows the nation’s most prized state secrets. What could go wrong?” When you start with the presumption that a person who has built himself to billionaire wealth and won the U.S. Presidency over stiff competition is a “simpleton” you are saying more about yourself that about what you are observing. Try to square what Patterico and others of his ilk are saying they see to Clarice Feldman: Trump Grinds the G20, the Bureaucratic Underground, and CNN into Hamburger – “As Trump worked successfully on trade and defense issues in Europe, his administration was quietly plugging security leaks and maladministration in our own bureaucratic underground.”

David Goldman (Spengler), no stranger to such things, says the Trump address in Warsaw sent a message that was “calculating and subtle” and “those who abhor Trump as an ignoramus should hang their heads in shame

Steven Hayward: Trump: The West’s Suicide Hotline? – “It is a tedious chore to unwrap everything wrong with the left’s reaction to Trump’s speech and the wider issues it raises.”

(Jonah Goldberg does a nice concise job of it in his most recent G-file.) I decided to dust off James Burnham’s classic, Suicide of the West: An Essay on the Meaning and Destiny of Liberalism, first published in 1964 but recently reissued by the great people at Encounter Books, for a refresher on why the reaction to Trump is nothing new. There are lots of illuminating passages in Burnham (who is enjoying something of a revival recently), but this one (at pp. 178-178 if you want to look it up) fits nicely for the present moment:

John Hinderaker: It’s True: Liberals Hate Western Civilization – “On the Left, however, Trump’s speech has been criticized for its principal virtue, the president’s spirited defense of Western civilization. Here are some of the many such instances.” … “So you can’t celebrate or defend Western civilization without being denounced by liberals as a white nationalist, a fascist, and so on. It is good to know where they stand.”

Victor Joecks Las Vegas Review-Journal: Group twists truth in health care ad targeting Heller – “It’s easy to make heart-wrenching ads when you’re not bound by pesky things like the truth.”

Keep that in mind when you see television commercials shrieking that people will die if Sen. Dean Heller votes for Republicans’ Obamacare replacement. Opposing groups are spending big to deceive Nevadans about the impact of that bill.

Nice to see this! 

Leave a Comment

It’s the culture

The must read for the day is David French: Yesterday, Donald Trump Struck a Righteous Blow against Universalism – “It’s a false ideology, a burden and a cancer on our body politic. It defies reality.”

These statements [of previous presidents] are remarkably similar, perfectly encapsulate a universalist view of human nature and human freedom, and are totally and completely wrong. Our previous presidents — and, indeed, much of the intellectual establishment left and right — have sold the American people a false bill of goods about human nature, their own history, and the role of culture in the inculcation of our civilizational values.

Trump, by contrast, located the values that other presidents have deemed universal squarely within a Western context, and he specifically rejected a universalism and moral equivalence, declaring that “there is nothing like our community of nations. The world has never known anything like our community of nations.”

The response from thinkers on the left was swift and outraged.

Trump’s “sin” here isn’t racism but rather calling out the false god of post–Cold War establishment utopianism. Ross Douthat is right. Trump’s speech wasn’t white nationalism, it was a rejection of universalism

The fiction of the universalist Left and the universalist Right is the notion that the best human values, including that alleged “longing for freedom,” are somehow transcendent and universal.

The best Western values, in other words, aren’t the result of universal virtue bursting forth but rather a centuries-long and uneven process of acculturation and education — one that’s often at odds with human nature and specifically designed to suppress our worst impulses.

Not all people have the same desires, and not all faiths teach the same things. Some cultures are superior to others. Trump yesterday reminded America and its allies that the culture they’ve built, imperfect as it is, is both valuable and vulnerable. That’s not racism. That’s just truth.

Richard Fernandez: Babel – “David Gerlenter writing in the Wall Street Journal says something self-evidently true. The Left seems to have won every single culture battle fought.”

Even before Breitbart’s warning there was Orwell who understood that the Left’s ultimate ability was to uproot the past and plant their chosen seed for the future. 

Yet the real mystery — one which even Orwell himself did not anticipate — is why, despite having won every culture battle, the Left has lost the war. … The current political crisis is the collective shudder of mortality passing through “every university, newspaper, TV network, Hollywood studio, publisher, education school and museum in the nation”. The left may have “wrapped up the culture war two generations ago” but it is rotting inside the wrapping.

The Left is losing because it failed, it lost the Mandate of Heaven, as the Chinese would say;

Washington Times: Sounding off overseas – “Someone should tell Barack Obama he’s not the president anymore.”

He’s making diplomacy difficult now for President Trump, and that’s probably his point. Mr. Trump is trying to get freeloading members of NATO to pay their dues, and the United States has difficult trade issues with Frau Merkel, who in turn faces an election with lagging support. Mr. Obama may be useful as a souvenir of happy times.

He has appointed himself to push back against trends that violate human rights, or suppress democracy or restrict individual freedoms and to fight back against “those who divide us.” Everybody knows he’s talking about the man who succeeded him.

For comparison and contrast, read Trump Colludes with Poland by Daniel John Sobieski. “Trump was also speaking to both Vladimir Putin and Germany’s Angela Merkel. Poland is a NATO member that, unlike Germany, has met its NATO commitments. It is also a country that has refused to adopt the European Union’s suicidal policy of open borders.”

Or try Trump and de Blasio in Europe: A study in contrasts by Avrohom Gordimer. “President Trump is tending to state business of the highest order at the G-20 summit in Hamburg. … In contrast, Mayor De Blasio is in Hamburg to join the protesters.” What was that about a “sellout of America? (see Chumley below)”

America has leaders who are loved by the media but who accomplish little, as well as leaders who get things done yet are often lambasted or ignored by the media. The story of President Trump and Mayor De Blasio in Hamburg speaks volumes about this phenomenon. It is a study in contrasts, and we all know who comes out ahead where it matters most.

Allahpundit: New York mayor jets off to Germany to protest Trump as city reels from cop’s assassination – “This makes sense once you remember that ostentatiously signaling one’s virtuous opposition to Trump is the highest calling of a leftist politician right now.”

Bruce Fein: Who should fund science research? – “Government spending a bad deal for taxpapers.”

The case for government funded science is unconvincing. Members of Congress and the White House think and act with partisan motives. They could care less about funding science for its own sake. Thus, government funded science comes with strings— a variation of the golden rule. He who has the gold dictates the scientific discovery. Thus, with the backing of Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin, Trofim Lysenko decreed the inheritability of acquired characteristics.

Further, scientists with or without government funding are human. They are driven by the same ulterior motives as everyone else. They labor tirelessly for money, fame, or status. To paraphrase Adam Smith in Wealth of Nations,” I have never known much good done by those who affected to conduct scientific research for the public good. It is an affectation, indeed, not very common among scientists, and very few words need be employed in dissuading them from it.”

Government funded scientific research is as vulnerable to error as is research funded by private sources with ulterior motives.

Luboš Motl takes off on Venus and Hawking’s scientific illiteracy – “every intelligent 10-year-old kid must know why this possibility is non-existent, why the statement is nonsense.”

Some scientists including Roy Spencer have pointed out how absurd these Hawking’s statements were from a scientific viewpoint.

But lots of the scientists who have paid lip service to the lies about the so-called global warming or climate change in the past have remained silent and confirmed that their scientific dishonesty has no limits. I despise all the climate alarmists who know that statements like that are absurd but who hide this fact because a lie like that could be helpful for their profits or political causes. You know, what these jerks and the people who tolerate these jerks’ existence haven’t quite appreciated is that it is only lies that may be helpful for them.

Cheryl K. Chumley: California charts sellout of America, Trump on climate – “It’s a love fest for the left.”

The real danger, though, is not climate change. Rather, it’s politicians like Brown who press for regulatory control of all matters environmental, and who see nothing wrong with bypassing the White House to unite with world leaders and press a global will onto a sovereign United States. In a phrase, that’s called selling out America.

Thomas Lifson: California Dems panic over their tax hike, sue 3 college Republicans for successful recall petition – “Caught by surprise, the California Dems reacted stupidly.”

That’s pretty thin gruel, but then again, left wing judges can grab power and forbid or require pretty much anything they want, as the travel ban kerfuffle illustrated. It takes the Supreme Court to weed out the renegade judges’ decisions, and that takes time, if it even happens.

But trying to quash a recall election following a tax increase, and dragging three kids into court looks really bad, and it will be especially odious when the gas tax hits on November 1st, and people start complaining about the money missing from their wallets when buying gas.

As the recall election of Gray Davis showed, there is a high level of ambient frustration and anger in California.

Most Californians could not name their own state senator, even though these solons represent more people than a member of the US House of Representatives. There is enough discontent that if the issues are properely framed, some real havoc could be inflicted on the Dems.

Ace has loaded up the Fake News™ front. Polish President: I’m Tired of this #FakeNews by the #FakeNewsMedia That My Wife Snubbed Trump – “At what point do they confess they’ve got a serious problem?” James Clapper Kinda-Sorta Accuses CNN of Spreading #FakeNews, While On CNN – that’s about Jim Acosta and the 17 intelligence agencies. Queen of Conspiracies Rachel Maddow: Someone Sent Me a Forged Document Claiming to Establish the Russian Collusion the Left is Crazy About So I’m Going to Blame a Right Wing False Flag Operation – “Yes, and I’m sure the forged RatherGate documents were created by a pro-Bush operator too, Rachel.” Finally, Ace notes that Milo Sues Simon & Schuster Over Reneged Book Deal for… $100 Million. In that light, one needs to note what happened to M. Mann on his hocky stick lawsuit with Tim Ball, Or maybe Sarah Palin v NYT. Whoooeeee! Things are a poppin’!

Another case is described by John Sexton: Some media outlets had a freakout about the House dress code yesterday – What will they (try to) dig up next?

By definition, it’s not news that a longstanding dress code still exists. Beyond that, what made this fun for the left was the idea that a male Republican (Paul Ryan) was responsible for this “new” policy. They really wanted a chance to break out that Handmaid’s Tale analogy and this, briefly, seemed to be it. But, bottom line, we are still not living through the Handmaid’s Tale and Paul Ryan is not ushering us toward a dystopian future.

Back on the culture wars is James Delingpole: #CNNBlackmail Is the Best Thing Since Trump Got Elected – “Sure, on one level it resulted in weapons-grade trolling and a few deliciously funny memes; but in bigger picture terms it was something much more significant than that – a pivotal moment in the Culture Wars.”

Or maybe a better analogy would be the one I used on Sirius XM: the moment during the Second World War when, under the command of the brilliant Bill Slim, the ill-equipped, neglected British Fourteenth Army realized that the only way to beat the Japanese was to fight with the same aggression, cunning, and mobility of the Japanese. In other words, to use the enemy’s tactics against them.

Just like CNN, just like Antifa, just like the left generally, the Japanese were a horrible enemy to fight: utterly without scruples, fanatically convinced of the justice of their wicked cause, terrifying in the swiftness with which they swarmed and overran your position. By the time you knew what had hit you, you’d either be dead — if you were lucky — or tied, wounded, to a tree while the enemy got ready to use you for bayonet practice.

They hunt in packs; they swarm; they move as one as if controlled by some sinister hive mind; they are immune to reason; they are completely without mercy.

To experience these terror tactics is a demoralizing and frightening thing.

Too often the response of the right has been to feel a bit sorry for itself because it’s all so unfair. And then persuade itself that if only it keeps on making the same arguments as before then eventually logic and truth will prevail because, after all, the facts of life are conservative.

There’s at least one major problem with this response: the left isn’t interested in logic and facts — and hasn’t been for quite some time.

#CNNBlackmail, make no mistake, was a pivotal #winning moment.

Why and how did we win? Partly by using the enemy’s tactics against them; partly by exploiting a few strengths of our own.

Definitely one good thing to have come out of #CNNBlackmail is that the enemy has shown its true colors. But the far, far better news is that the good guys have fought back.

The word of the day is Gramscian. HT to Glen Reynolds for link to Eric Raymond’s Gramscian damage to explain the term. “Americans have never really understood ideological warfare.” … “ideological and memetic warfare has been a favored tactic for all of America’s three great adversaries of the last hundred years — Nazis, Communists, and Islamists.”

But the Soviets, following the lead of Marxist theoreticians like Antonio Gramsci, took very seriously the idea that by blighting the U.S.’s intellectual and esthetic life, they could sap Americans’ will to resist Communist ideology and an eventual Communist takeover. The explicit goal was to erode the confidence of America’s ruling class and create an ideological vacuum to be filled by Marxism-Leninism.

While the espionage apparatus of the Soviet Union didn’t outlast it, their memetic weapons did. These memes are now coming near to crippling our culture’s response to Islamic terrorism.

The first step to recovery is understanding the problem. Knowing that suicidalist memes were launched at us as war weapons by the espionage apparatus of the most evil despotism in human history is in itself liberating. Liberating, too, it is to realize that the Noam Chomskys and Michael Moores and Robert Fisks of the world (and their thousands of lesser imitators in faculty lounges everywhere) are not brave transgressive forward-thinkers but pathetic memebots running the program of a dead tyrant.

The process won’t be pretty. But I fear that if the rest of us don’t hound the po-mo Left and its useful idiots out of public life with attack and ridicule and shunning, the hard Right will sooner or later get the power to do it by means that include a lot of killing. I don’t want to live in that future, and I don’t think any of my readers do, either. If we want to save a liberal, tolerant civilization for our children, we’d better get to work.

neo-neocon: National security leakers upset at being monitored for leaks – “The premise of this Politico article initially seems so bizarre it’s hard to fathom.”

The title, “Trump’s leaks crackdown sends chills through national security world,” had me scratching my head and asking, “Isn’t that what’s it’s supposed to do?”

For quite some time there have been an unconscionable number of leaks of national security information from those working in the field. This is not only potentially damaging, it’s often a criminal act. If a person is hired to work in national security, that’s one of many things that person learns at the outset and is expected to respect.

neo-neocon also notes the media fascination with Ivanka Trump’s fashions.

Look, let’s face it: Ivanka Trump would look striking and incredible—in a good way, that is—if she was wearing the proverbial gunny sack. I mean that. The woman is gorgeous, she has a knockout figure despite three children, and she’s nearly six feet tall without heels—and she wears stilettos a lot, which must make her about six foot four.

Can you imagine that person walking into a room? You can bet all eyes would turn, and it wouldn’t be because of the outfits.

And, it appears, the daughter sat in for Dad at a G-20 gathering. Family values? Anti-women? etc. etc. That’s what ‘they’ claim. But look at what is in front of your eyes and wonder about how distorted the Trump-o-phobes eyesight must be.

Leave a Comment

July 4, Liberty, Dignity, and History

Richard W. Rahn: The anti-liberty lobby – “Those who claim the right to others’ labor would fit in with slaveholders.”

The 13th Amendment to the Constitution prohibits “involuntary servitude” and slavery. At what point does a tax on someone’s labor — where the proceeds of that tax are largely used to provide income or services to others — constitute “involuntary servitude”? At various times, many countries, including the United States, have tried to place very high tax rates on the “rich” or others — and it always fails. The “rich” withdraw their taxable labor by taking more leisure time or move to the shadow economy, or to where they are more lightly taxed. Those who think they have the right to the labor of those they revile, i.e., the “rich,” have the same mentality of the slaveholder who also thought he had the right to others’ labor.

Liberty is not only being destroyed by taxation and regulation; it is also being destroyed by formal and informal speech codes, particularly on college campuses. Those who would seek to impose limitations on the free expression of others are actually revealing they have much of the mindset of King George III of England at the time of the American Revolution — who also believed that speech he did not like was impermissible.

Geoffrey P. Hunt: Beneath the Dignity of the Office – “The first article of impeachment against president Donald J. Trump — if the Democrats regain the U.S. House majority — will be that his behavior demeans the office of the President.” See The Hill: House Democrat introduces bill to amend presidential removal procedures)

In fact, Donald Trump has restored dignity to the office, when you consider how Barack Obama soiled the office with his own dissembling, fabrications, and manipulations, not to mention the sort of race hustlers, hoodlums, felons, and traitors routinely welcomed to Obama’s White House.

WWE is the perfect metaphor for the mainstream media. Phony but authentic in its phoniness. Mostly fabricated, but built upon a few truths once upon a time.

The irony is lost on CNN that WWE replaced the three-ring circus, with Trump, and CNN the main event. And CNN will taste the clammy canvas every time, with Trump still president, refreshed for another bout, where the outcome is already known.

Bethany Patterson: The New York Times needs to raise its journalistic standards – Publications – AEI – “This description is and should be an affront to every reader who wants the truth and facts from a newspaper. At the very least, Shear should have reported by what authority Trump’s claim was “debunked” — that is, shown to be incorrect — then readers could decide for themselves.”

Scott Johnson: The eternal meaning of Independence Day – he cites Lincoln’s speech of July 10, 1858 and one comment in that speech rings a bell in today’s arguments about entitlements and taxing the rich and how health care is a “right” and how, for instance, Nevada is whining that it must have other people’s money for its health care.

They are the arguments that kings have made for enslaving the people in all ages of the world. You will find that all the arguments in favor of king-craft were of this class; they always bestrode the necks of the people, not that they wanted to do it, but because the people were better off for being ridden. That is their argument, and this argument of the Judge is the same old serpent that says you work and I eat, you toil and I will enjoy the fruits of it.

Didn’t President Lincoln get some of his fame or notoriety as a wrestler, too?

Another oft cited speech today: Calvin Coolidge on Independence Day.These great truths were in the air that our people breathed. Whatever else we may say of it, the Declaration of Independence was profoundly American.” As Reynolds says: “read the whole thing.”

Back on the Real Russian Front, Scott Johnson notices The romance of Soviet stooges – “Vivian Gornick is the author of the 1979 book titled The Romance of Communism. It’s a romance with which many readers of the New York Times are familiar even if the thought of it is revolting to anyone who knows the relevant history.”

Austin Bay: The History Of Fake News: A brief history of weaponized information – “Contemporary universities do a lousy job of improving the critical thinking skills of students — such a lousy job that you might conclude many professors don’t want their students to know how to think.” From the article in National Interest by David V. Gloe:

How to begin to learn how to discern fake news? By rediscovering the broad civic applicability of the historical method. It starts with modifying the national epistemological approach to acquiring knowledge, and, applied across the population of the United States, the impact could be profound.

Quite when America started deviating from critical thinking is unclear, but a test of American college students, the College Learning Assessment Plus (CLA+) shows that, in over half of the universities studied, there is no increase in critical thinking skills over a four-year degree. The reasons for this are far from clear, but the pursuit of knowledge has become more argumentative, opinion-based and adversarial than illuminating. Research papers are reminiscent of watching the prosecutor layout a criminal case on Law and Order.

The article uses the World Wars to illustrate its points on Fake News in the light of intelligence agencies and propaganda. Gloe says “Fact-based and objective reporting and analysis is surely the gold standard, but information consumers also have a role, even a civic obligation as citizens to take some responsibility for what they allow themselves to consider as truth.” An example often cited here can be seen between Hanson and Newmark, both students and teachers of history. When Newmark speaks of Trump she often falls into judgment while Hanson observes and opines. Newmark leaves no room for options in perception and interpretation. Hanson does. That provides clues about which to consider as most credible and which source is at higher risk for Fake News.

Leave a Comment

adults in the room

Henry Miller: Putin’s ‘sock puppets’: How Russia ‘uses’ anti-GMO activists to undermine crop biotech and science – “Alex Berezow of the American Council on Science and Health has described how RT subtly undermines the United States’ technology and economy.” This provides clues as to the real Russian collusion issue and the Fake News issue.

Genetic engineering in agriculture is a sector that holds intense interest for the Russians. Harkening back to the Lysenkoism catastrophe for Soviet agriculture in the Soviet Union, their expertise and R&D in that area are virtually nil, and there is a ban on genetically engineered organisms from abroad entering the country, so they’ve adopted a strategy of trying to stymie its development elsewhere.

And that brings us to the U.S. home-grown anti-genetic engineering movement, which is well-coordinated and well-financed. It’s unclear how or if it is directly supported by Russia; it may simply be that, as one of my colleagues, a prominent Russia expert, speculated, “Whatever stirs up trouble in the U.S., Russia is ready to help make it worse.”

Pursuing the Russian agenda, the activists regularly trot out a litany of false accusations about academics, and USRTK has filed harassing Freedom of Information requests for emails and documents of at least a hundred public university faculty and staff members, hoping to find embarrassing snippets that might imply conflicts of interest.

These sorts of campaigns are pernicious because they further erode the ability of disinterested observers – the public — to judge what is true and what is not with respect to complex public policy issues.

Book review by Joel Mokyr: Rulers, Religion, and Riches: Why the West Got Rich and the Middle East Did Not by Jared Rubin. It has food for thought about the role of religion in governance garnered through a look at history. But look at the current situation, the reality behind the question.

The Middle East, it has been said, is not just a collection of failed states. It is a failed region. It generates a disproportional number of the world’s orphans and refugees, its GDP per capita is intolerably low despite oil riches, and there are few signs that there is light at the end of tunnel. Democracy seems to have been put on the back burner indefinitely, and human rights are a lost cause in most countries and in retreat elsewhere. Intellectually, too, things look rather dismal: In 2005 Harvard University alone produced more scientific papers than 17 Arabic-speaking countries combined. Muslim countries contribute just 2.5 percent of more than 11.5 million papers published worldwide each year (Muslims constituted 23 percent of the world’s population in 2010).

Rubin has written an important and timely book. His methodology is very much that of the historically informed economist: certain choices are made at some point because they make sense, that is, the benefits to those that make the decision exceed the costs. But once made, these initial conditions can have cascading unintended and unanticipated consequences, and those historically contingent causal chains may well be what drove much of the great and little divergences that our profession is so interested in. Equally important, this well-argued and sensible book about Islam provides a much-needed antidote to the toxic rubbish masquerading as scholarship produced by some of the Islamophobes in the current American administration (e.g., Gorka, 2016). The Middle East’s problem is not Islam; it is History.

Why? “Rubin is correct in pointing out that in the most progressive countries in western Europe the ability of religious leaders to halt progress was limited.” The U.S. follows what appears to be the main theme. The U.S. Constitution enjoins its government from making laws regarding religion and leaves religion as a personal matter – at least until the culture wars starting in the 60’s came to the stage. A secular government also leaves innovation and entrepreneurship to the individual and that is a key to economic and scientific progress. This also, in the U.S. has been under assault as illustrated in the debate about government regulations or even, as in the opinion cited above, about the faux religious movements, such as environmentalism, attempts to intervene in and control commercial activity.

The review is tainted as the cite of the ad hominem about the “current administration” and Gorka being “Islamophobes” illustrates. One cannot also ignore the impact of religion on governance and the fact that there is a significant difference between the teaching of Christ in the New Testament and that of Mohamed in the Koran. The essence of the book is that Christianity allowed social progress. Islam did not.

Peter Morici is on this theme with Forces that will reshape civilization – “Innovation and productivity will point the way.” He seems to refute Mokyr/Rubin but gets lost in advocating government control abd the historical examples of socialism and shows diminished grasp of reality with climate change. It’s a PC list all the way down.

Back on the Trump phenomena: while there are stories about Republicans aghast at the war on the media or getting vapors over his manner of expression, Jennifer Harper describes how Trump wins the media war, battle by battle – “There is a reason why the mainstream news media and the Democratic Party are in an uproar: They’ve been left out of the political equation by a player who understands the game better than they do.” Their turf has been invaded.

“As we know now, most of the media totally missed Trump’s appeal to millions upon millions of Americans. The prejudice against him blinded those news organizations to what was happening in the country. Even more incredibly, I believe the bias and hostility directed at Trump backfired. The feeling that the election was, in part, a referendum on the media, gave some voters an extra incentive to vote for Trump. A vote for him was a vote against the media and against Washington,” writes Michael Goodwin, a New York Post columnist.

Don Surber illustrates the media’s problem with Chuck Todd: “I don’t” want to discuss issues – “He had the expert on plans to repeal and replace Obamacare — a trillion-dollar problem — and all Todd wanted to do was talk about his butt-hurt over tweets.”

Tom Price is a doctor, former congressman, and now secretary of the largest government agency: health and human services.

He deigned to take time out of his holiday weekend to go on “Meet the Press,” the longest running Sunday morning show. On November 6, “Meet the Press” will celebrate its 70th anniversary.

Instead of substantive questions about policy host Chuck Todd asked about tweets.

Dr. Price handled him beautifully.

The public sees this scene repeatedly and it is consistently the Administration leaders who are the ‘adults in the room’ and its opposition that is childish. There are a lot of stories that illustrate this.

sundance on Sunday Talks: White House Signals Support For Ted Cruz “Consumer Choice” Healthcare Amendment… – “The vast majority of the most severely impacted people within the discussion, middle-class workers/taxpayers who do not qualify for medicaid, have been essentially locked out of the legislative consideration. It is refreshing to see middle America finally being part of the equation.” This is part of a strategy and the issues and implications are described.

Bill Scher: Democrats, Beware the Single-Payer Siren – “Democrats who are giddily munching popcorn while watching Republicans struggle with trying to repeal Obamacare may want to put down the tub.” It’s the contrast to the adult discussion about getting out of the messes in governance created over the last few years.

Sean Davis: Progressive Journalists Are Outraged At The NRA For Pointing Out Leftist Violence – “Two days before an assassination attempt on Republicans, the NRA posted a video on Facebook warning of leftist violence. Progressive journalists are now pretending political violence is the NRA’s fault.” Dana Loesch NRA PSA comes up. Again. Loesch and the NRA obviously struck a nerve.

Barely two weeks after a progressive Democrat activist attempted a mass assassination of Republican officials, progressives are outraged at the NRA for noting that the Second Amendment gives people the right to defend themselves, with arms if necessary, from people who might try to assassinate them or their families.

You might not remember it because the news media pivoted away from the story as quickly as possible

“And when that happens, they’ll use it as an excuse for the outrage,” Loesch concludes. You can watch the full video here. Rather than undercutting Loesch’s claim that progressives reflexively scream racism whenever anyone challenges them, McKesson only underscored her point by accusing her of being a white supremacist for pointing out violence committed by leftists.

“Like Goldfarb, Applebaum also appears to be under the misimpression that no major political violence occurred in the U.S. in recent weeks.

Rather than attempting to exploit what happened in Alexandria earlier this month, Dana Loesch and the NRA predicted it. And rather than acknowledging the reality of what happened, McKesson and Goldfarb and Applebaum chose instead to close their eyes and stick their fingers in their ears and scream at the NRA and its allies for pointing out the need to protect the right of self-defense in the wake of a politically motivated assassination attempt on Republicans.

Jeffrey Folks: The Most Abused President in History – “That’s the judgment of Fox News’s Brit Hume, who sees today’s partisanship as “the most intensely hostile political atmosphere” in memory – in his case, a memory stretching back almost 50 years.”

I wonder how Trump can stand it. The president must be incredibly thick-skinned or possessed of a truly magnanimous soul. Although he often defends himself by striking back, it’s hardly proportional. For every Trump tweet, there are thousands of attacks from the liberal media.

It’s clear that the left is grasping at straws and has now descended into name-calling, the lowest form of rhetoric. If the attacks were based on substance, they might be taken seriously. But “crazy lunatic”? That is the stuff of an affronted seven-year-old, not of an educated adult.

Thomas Phippen: Trumps Spend $5 Million Less Than Obamas On White House Salaries – “While $22 million in savings is a tiny amount compared to the nearly $20 trillion national debt or the $3.9 trillion federal budget, “it could be a leading indicator of Trump’s commitment to cut waste, fraud and taxpayer abuse,” Andrzejewski said.”

VDH: Trump’s High-Stakes Tweeting – “Trump’s strongest supporters are sometimes the most anxious critics of his tweeting—not because his is a failing presidency bordering on caricature, but because it is adroitly unwinding the Obama transformation.” … “Is ad hominem tweeting, then, endangering or empowering Trump’s agenda? Or both? Or neither?”

Start with the given that there are now regrettably few accepted norms of presidential behavior. Trump’s occasional uncouthness is a symptom, not a catalyst, of the times.

Trump, in comic-book fashion, tweets his body slam of CNN; the socialist Bernie Sanders’ wife stands accused of evicting the disabled in what looks to be a real-estate scam by a failed college president.

Factored into the Trump’s tweeting controversies are other variables mostly left unsaid by the media:

Trump has melted down partisan journalists and left the American progressive media in shambles. It was Obama, not Trump, who established the practice of going after journalists by name, both materially and rhetorically, … Trump saw Obama’s precedent, and proverbially trumped it.

CNN is now no longer a news organization, but has been reduced to caricature by Trump hatred. It has been exposed not just as unprofessional and dishonest but also has run the gamut from scatology to violence porn to simple fraud.

Another strange fact is that amid the extraneous tweeting, Trump displays an undeniable natural cunning.

We do not know whether there is a saturation point at which Trump’s base will tire of the occasional ad hominem crude tweets, but so far we clearly have not reached it. Why?

So far, for three reasons. … First, half the country despises the mainstream media and sees it as arrogant, corrupt, hypocritical, and in need of comeuppance. … Two, conservatives favor Trump’s ongoing agenda on immigration, health care, tax, regulatory and national security reform. … Finally, no one has calibrated quite the nation’s deep antipathy toward the coastal media-university-political-cultural nexus, most specifically its utter hypocrisy.

There is a limit to Trump’s crude personal tweets, but apparently no observer has yet calibrated where it is—given the country’s disdain for the media, the progressive hypocritical agenda, and the scatological and obscene rhetoric of Trump’s opposition.

I would urge the president to stop tweeting about nothings and to keep his powder dry for bigger game to come than Joe and Mika. But considering that I have been urging just such pruning of tweets as a matter of strategy for Trump for a long time and that I have been mostly wrong about the downsides of his twitter invective for just as long, perhaps the president knows something I don’t.

Then there’s Kevin D. Williamson: Junkie Running Dry – Judgment and ad hominem are on the table to contrast to what VDH offers. It’s a comparison between the adult and the child. For Williamson, looking at results takes second fiddle to trying to offer a cute put down.

Some people simply cannot handle the fact that Donald Trump was elected president. One of those people is Donald Trump. Trump has shown himself intellectually and emotionally incapable of making the transition from minor entertainment figure to major political figure.

What do you think he reads first in the morning: His national-security briefing or Page Six?

I’d wager that Trump could list at least three times as many cable-news commentators as world leaders. He is much better versed in CNN’s lineup than in NATO’s.

Pollak: Donald Trump, Twitter, and the ‘Presidential’ Standard – “President Donald Trump addressed criticisms Saturday that his use of Twitter to attack his critics is not presidential. “My use of social media is not Presidential – it’s MODERN DAY PRESIDENTIAL,” he tweeted, and added: “Make America Great Again!”

One thing is clear: Trump has always used this method of fighting his critics. In 2012, he tweeted: “Everybody tells me not to hit back at the lowlifes that go after me for PR–sorry, but I must. It’s my nature.”

Nothing has changed in thirty years, except for the medium.

Trump’s critics often contrast his behavior with that of his predecessor, President Barack Obama, who was known for his cool demeanor. But Obama was not above insulting people from the bully pulpit

One difference is immediately apparent: Trump generally confines his attacks to members of the media and political elite, while Obama attacked ordinary people, or Americans as a whole.

A further question is how “presidential” conduct is to be measured. Trump may flout social conventions, but never flouts the Constitution.

Trump is certainly capable of playing by the rules of decorum. One would like a president to do so at all times. Yet recent history is littered with Republicans who played nice and lost elections, or backed down from a fight once in office. Controversial tweets may be a political hazard of a winning mentality.

Regardless, many Americans prefer a president who breaks the social norms of politics to one who breaks the rules of the Constitution, however politely.

Allahpundit: Carl Bernstein: The media needs to do a “different kind of reporting” during this “malignant presidency” – “I guess he means that the press needs to make Trump’s temperament and basic fitness for office a regular part of its White House beat, to an extent even greater than it typically does for Republican presidents. (Dubya was “incurious,” Reagan was senile, etc.) Which of course they already do.” Child. Allahpundit then quotes Jake Tapper’s remarks to the L.A. Press Club as an Adult contrast: “O]ur facts need to be squeaky clean and uncorrupted. We are not the resistance, we are not the opposition, and we are here to tell the truth and report the facts regardless of whom those facts might benefit.”

Leave a Comment

Here’s how it works. No pretenses.

Cheryl K. Chumley: My first-person brush with news bias: ‘You’re fired!’ – “The media’s not just unwittingly biased.”

The media’s very often head-on, all-out, glaring-eyed, aggressively, angrily fever-pitched intentionally biased. Trust me on this. I’ve been part and parcel of the media for years and have seen, too up-close-and-personal for taste, just how the liberal minds of the supposed Reputable News Outlets work.

Take notes. Media bias isn’t just a national problem. It’s local, as well.

So let’s not be so surprised when Trump hits at the media as an “enemy,” and when news outlets and news people are accused of intentional bias — of intentionally skewing and faking the news. It happens, it happens frequently, and it happens at all levels of news organizations.

Ralph Z. Hallow: Trump’s coarse Mika Brzezinski remarks the inevitable, and needed, reaction to coarse journalism – “Not presidential by previous standards? Yes. But he’s the man we elected. We knew he’d do that. We wanted him to hit back.”

His own wobbly-kneed incompetent party — the majority party in the House and the Senate — hides under desks and behind chairs rather than hit back.

America has become the coarse nation that some thoughtful conservatives warned about 40 years ago. Mr. Trump, left to defend himself by himself, is defending our honor too.

Never, however, have I seen news and opinion disseminators for all major news outlets so basely treat a president. My gut tells me that my silence and that of others would be seen as acceptance of these transgressions of the norms of civilized behavior.

Byron York: The price of fighting with Trump – “People who get into fights with Donald Trump often end up diminished by it.”

Of course one could say that Trump is at fault, that he regularly engages in spats that are beneath the dignity of the presidency. He should not, for example, respond in kind to “small hands” jabs. But Trump is Trump. He does what he does, which is what he did during the campaign and before. And now, in the White House, he has enlisted his media adversaries, wittingly or not, in a campaign against “fake news” that resonates with his core supporters.

“They like him, they believe in him, they have not to any large degree been shaken from him, and the more the media attacks him, the more it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy on the side of the Trump supporters who fervently believe the media treat him unfairly,” Tony Fabrizio, Trump’s campaign pollster, told the Washington Post.

And for those who continue to jump into sloppy fights with the president? They will walk away diminished for having done so.

Brian C. Joondeph: Trump the Junkyard Dog: Poke Him and Expect to Be Bitten – “Junkyard dogs are good in a fight, mean and nasty when provoked. They’re often docile when treated decently, with respect and kindness. But don’t poke them with a stick or kick them unless you want to be attacked with bared teeth and a nasty bite.”

President Donald Trump is a junkyard dog. Raised in New York City, he spent his entire working life dealing with N.Y. politics, graft, regulations, backstabbing, and aggressiveness. A true junkyard. It’s not the lunch room at Bergdorf Goodman on Fifth Avenue; it’s the trenches of political warfare and bureaucracy of building hotels and managing real estate.

Were they expecting a George W. Bush response of turning the other cheek – of repeatedly not reacting to criticism, content to “let history be the judge of what he did”? How did that work out? The Bush approach reflects the refined highbrow world he grew up in, not the rough-and-tumble world of New York City, where Trump cut his teeth.

Neo-neocon: “It probably does not need repeating, but I never was a Trump fan prior to the election, and I still have plenty of reservations about him and consider some of his actions and words intemperate, obnoxious, and offensive. Nevertheless, he’s been a better president than I expected, and has kept his word on some important subjects such as judicial appointments. But the way the left and the press have distorted his actions in this matter is inclined to make me more sympathetic to him than before, not less. I cannot be alone in this.”

Steven Hayward: Winning Weariness – “Trump warned us that there’d be so much winning that we’d get tired of all the winning. And while this week has been consumed, as usual, with the sideshow of another one of Trump’s impetuous tweetstorms, the ledger is indeed showing a lot to celebrate.” Meanwhile, Trump’s predecessor is alleging a lack of leadership and there is constant braying about lack of qualifications, intelligence, and whatever. Facts don’t matter to these folks.

Adam Shaw: Liberal States Get Jittery as Trump Looks to Clamp Down on Voter Fraud – “fearing that Trump is launching a “voter suppression” commission.”

the states objecting have said they won’t comply if they believe the effort is more likely to produce voter suppression rather than the stated goal of election integrity.

“This entire commission is based on the specious and false notion that there was widespread voter fraud last November,” Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, a close Clinton ally, said in a statement. “At best this commission was set up as a pretext to validate Donald Trump’s alternative election facts, and at worst is a tool to commit large-scale voter suppression.”

It is not clear how such a commission could be used to commit voter suppression. States such as Alabama, Missouri, and Kansas have said they would provide the information, Axios reported.

Groups that highlight alleged cases of voter fraud referred to McAuliffe’s statement as “posturing.”

John Hinderaker: Democrats Refuse to Cooperate In Voter Fraud Investigation – “Why would Minnesota law preclude responding to the federal commission’s request? If you keep reading, you find that it wouldn’t.”

The Election Integrity Commission is trying to find out how much illegal voting goes on. The Democrats constantly tell us there is no, or virtually no, voter fraud. If that were the case, one would think that they would want to cooperate with the commission to prove their point. The fact that they don’t want the commission to be able to find out, for example, how many people are registered voters in multiple states, suggests that what they really want is for voter fraud to continue, because they know they benefit from it.

It’s the usual. Those knee deep in the muck are trying to pretend the muck doesn’t exist. That denial can get quite desperate and quite creative. There are stories that releasing voter data requested to investigate the quality of the known voter fraud problem are violations of privacy and provide opportunity for ID theft hacking. The problem is that all this effort to sweep things under the rug is starting to smell.

Sally C. Pipes: Ignoring single-payer siren song – “Single-payer health care has failed spectacularly everywhere.” But it is still being pushed with venom and vigor. Why?

Even private insurers are wondering aloud about a government takeover of the nation’s healthcare system. In June, Mark Bertolini, CEO of Aetna, said, “Single-payer, I think we should have that debate as a nation.”

That debate should be a quick one. Single-payer has failed spectacularly everywhere it has been tried. Patients subjected to such systems routinely wait months for care — if they’re able to receive it at all. And those delays can be deadly.

Leslie Eastman : Will next month’s total eclipse cause interstate gridlock? – “transportation officials are gearing up for potential gridlock along the interstate that may occur because of skyward rubbernecking.”

Facilities catering to tourists that lie in the “path of totality” (between Oregon and South Carolina) are already cashing in on the eclipse.

Alaska Airlines is offering a special eclipse-viewing flight.

There are six especially fun spots that will be having viewing parties.

So, plan now for where you want to see the eclipse…and don’t forget to view it safely!

Oregon is gearing up and they are looking at a 1%er protest type mess or maybe a Frat Party (Animal House) model, not a Tea Party ‘leave no trace’ experience.

Leave a Comment

Aggressive response to a bully

William L. Gensert: Genius of Trump and the NRA – “Aggressiveness has been missing for too long on the right.” Dana Loesch, in an NRA PSA stirred the pot with one example. The President provided another.

It seems that no matter how far the left sinks in their attacks on Republicans, the right can never seem to bring itself to fight back.

when the president fights back with his own tweet, he has crossed the line.

It’s a double standard that has been strictly enforced by left for some time but today more than ever. Trump is the elected first Republican in memory who won’t shut up and take it.

Liberals who believe they are on the side of all that is right and just exercise their moral right to use any tactic or behavior low and vile in pursuit of a more progressive society. They offer conservatives no such option — Republicans must obey the rules — you know, the rules they make.

Do you get it? The left can actually do violence and it’s okay, yet, should anyone bring up their progressive penchant for violence, and they’re calling for civil war.

It’s high time we stop acquiescing to this type of one-sided fight.

With the left, conservative free speech constitutes violence. Yet, when they use actual violence to suppress conservative speech, they are merely exercising their right to free speech.

With the NRA ad and the tweets from Trump, the worm is turning. We finally are fighting back.

Cristina Laila: Eric Holder Sends Out Ominous Midnight Tweet to ‘Career FBI/DOJ Employees’ – “After an 8 year crime spree, also known as the Obama administration, it’s a little difficult to tell who Eric Holder is warning.” But, you know, it’s the Republicans to watch out for as they catch up to the shenanigans going on in the swamp with their investigations.

Ed Morrissey: Former Medicare trustee: “People will die” claims “spurious,” “fallacious reasoning” – “There’s certainly room to criticize the alternatives being proposed to the ACA, but this fallacy isn’t criticism as much as it’s the rhetorical equivalent of sticking ones fingers in their ears and shouting gibberish.”

by adding millions of people to a declining network of providers, the net impact is to make it more difficult for the poor to seek effective and timely medical care. Furthermore, the funds that might have helped the poor are now being distributed in favor of the expansion enrollees. One does not need to say that “PEOPLE WILL DIE!” in order to point out the failure of the ACA’s approach and its distorted outcomes.

But of course, that won’t stop the demagoguery. We posted this earlier in the week, but it’s worth adding Remy’s Reason video here again as a reminder that fallacies can really make people feel good about their own righteousness.

David Kopel: Federal court enjoins California large-capacity magazine confiscation – This is a rundown of the quality of the arguments being used by gun control advocates and why a judge was not persuaded by them.

In 2000, Eugene Volokh compiled many quotes from gun control advocates stating that their ultimate goals were prohibition and confiscation. Today, confiscation is still being pushed, wherever politically viable. At least for now, the federal judiciary is keeping California from sliding all the way down the slippery slope.

A lot of specious arguments, inane allegations and innuendo, and just plain lack of intellectual integrity is on display. These examples indicate that perhaps there is an increasing aggressive exposure and dissection of such material.

Leave a Comment

Rumble, rumble

Stephen Dinan: Obama-appointed judges dismiss Supreme Court ruling, continue blocking Trump’s immigration crackdown – “The judges in those deportation cases have rejected Mr. Trump’s argument that he has wide latitude to decide who gets kicked out, without having to worry about district courts second-guessing him on facts of the case.”

Notably, all four of the judges — including one in San Francisco who blocked part of Mr. Trump’s executive order against sanctuary cities — were appointed to the bench by President Obama.

“Almost all of the judges are acting outside of established law,” said Hans von Spakovsky, a senior legal fellow at The Heritage Foundation who served as a Justice Department lawyer in the Bush administration.

For David Leopold, a former president of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, the judges are heroes upholding the Constitution when the political branches of government won’t.

“You’ve got the Republicans playing ball in the Senate and the House. The only institution that’s putting a check on this guy is the judiciary,” he said.

Where lower-court judges pored over Mr. Trump’s campaign statements and perused his Twitter account looking for evidence to use against him, the Supreme Court took the president’s executive order at face value.

“These judges are clearly hoping these cases don’t get appealed, don’t get to the Supreme Court, because if they do, they’re going to get overturned,” he predicted. “The lesson to them is they need to quit making political decisions based on the fact they don’t like the president and his policy, and start making legal decisions that follow binding precedent.”

It seems like the law, as it is written, doesn’t matter much to many who profess otherwise.

Andrea Noble and Dan Boylan: Schumer uses Senate rule to scuttle meeting on ‘unmasking’ by Obama officials – “Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer invoked a parliamentary rule against holding committee meetings beyond the first two hours of the Senate’s day.” The protection of the party over-rides any other concern. The race card is also being played.

“It’s disturbing and reckless for the minority leader to block the briefing,” the Iowa Republican said. “We’ve seen too many recent reminders of how unsafe the world is today. This is no time to play politics with our national security.”

Later Wednesday, Ms. Rice, who is black, charged that race and gender could be driving the scrutiny she is currently facing.

Across Capitol Hill, at least five committees are currently conducting inquiries into Russia’s alleged role in influencing the 2016 campaign, possible ties between Mr. Trump’s presidential campaign and the Kremlin and Mr. Trump’s firing of FBI Director James B. Comey in May.

The investigations have bogged down Mr. Trump’s presidency, which has called allegations of Russian interference “a hoax” and a “witch hunt.”

Mr. Trump’s defenders on Capitol Hill say the multiple probes have yet to unearth anything substantive and should conclude as quickly as possible.

Ace: Democrat Senator Dick Durbin Refuses to Release Email Correspondence He Had With Leftwing Assassin James Hodgkinson – “Apparently it’s both nothing important, and something important enough to hide from the public.”

VDH: The progressive boomerang – “Efforts to take out Trump are coming back to haunt Democrats.”

The progressive strategy of investigating President Trump nonstop for Russian collusion or obstruction of justice or witness tampering so far has produced no substantial evidence of wrongdoing.

The alternate strategy of derailing the new administration before it really gets started hasn’t succeeded, either,

A third strategy of portraying Mr. Trump as a veritable monster likewise so far has failed in four special elections for House seats.

Mr. Trump acts as if he is a Nietzschean figure, assuming that anything that does not destroy him only makes him stronger. And now, slowly, his accusers are becoming the accused.

Now that Mr. Trump is emerging from successful House special elections and has fended off six months of media attacks, celebrity invective and progressive efforts to abort his tenure, he seems to be going back on the offensive.

Currently, House and Senate investigations are doing to Democrats what has been done Mr. Trump. So far, these probes seem to have better chances to prove alleged wrongdoing.

In sum, to thwart a new president’s policies, it is probably wiser to offer alternative agendas instead of trying to destroy him before he has even entered office.

Paul Mirengoff: Trump supporters teach Starbucks a lesson – “It’s a sad commentary that Starbucks employees need to be “coached” not to insult customers who show support for the President of the United States, or any other public official or candidate for office.” There is a comparison and contrast here not only in the ‘what if the shoe had been on the other foot’ but also for comparing how Starbuck’s staff treated a customer and how that customer’s community responded. The response was polite, to the point, had humor, and didn’t adversely impact the business.

 

Leave a Comment