Archive for politics

Is truth an invention?

Tammy Bruce on The rot of political correctness – “In today’s academy, truth is an invention. Expecting people to show up on time is racist. Censorship is good. Silencing opposing viewpoints imperative. Violence to enforce safety is natural.”

For the last 25 years, under the guise of “political correctness,” we’ve been watching the inexplicable flow into our culture. The idiotic demands of political correctness in the 1980s, ironically relying on the decency of the American people for their acquiescence, was just the prep course, an amuse bouche before the main course of creating social chaos and destruction.

It sounds dramatic, and it is, and it’s also the only way the left maintains power — brainwashing people into believing that social norms must be destroyed in order to create a more perfect society. From the ashes would emerge the great collective phoenix.

Just ask the Soviet Union, Cambodia, Cuba and Venezuela how well that works out.

There is naval gazing due to a couple of ‘close but no cigar’ votes where the Democrats have invested heavily. Gabriel Debenedetti: Democrats begin to wonder: When do we win? – “For all the roiling anger and energy at the grassroots, the party still fell short in Georgia and Kansas. And Democratic prospects in upcoming elections aren’t promising.” Perhaps have something the part is for might be a start. When “resistance” and lawlessness and obstruction and hate are your key drivers, strength is limited.

“The biggest driver of enthusiasm right now is the rejection of Trump and the Trump agenda,” said party strategist Jesse Ferguson

Schatz believes the party’s messaging needs some refining. In his view, that means officials at the DCCC should cut the doom-and-gloom messaging in their fundraising emails — a significant way the party communicates with backers.

IBD describes The Democrats’ Desperate Ploy To Block Tax Reform – “Democrats say they won’t work with President Trump on tax reform unless he first releases his tax returns. This has to be the lamest excuse for not fixing the tax code we’ve ever heard.” It’s becoming quite clear that this obsession is just another gambit to obtain something, anything, with which to smear, defame, and denigrate.

Let’s be clear. This is not about tax reform at all. And it’s not about making sure Trump isn’t sneaking some provision into a reform bill that will secretly benefit him or his family.

This is about politics, pure and simple.

Democrats continue to hope that there’s something in Trump’s tax returns that they can blow out of proportion to further hamper his administration, and they think they have some leverage over Trump at the moment.

But the question regarding the public’s need to see Trump’s tax returns has already been decided by voters, hasn’t it? They knew before casting their ballots that Trump had refused to release his tax returns, and voted him into office anyway.

Tax reform is vital to restoring economic growth and vitality. No one denies that. If tax reform fails — and the economy suffers as a result — it won’t be Trump’s tax returns that are to blame. It will be shortsighted Democratic lawmakers kowtowing to the extremists in their party.

Another of the petards coming home to roost is described by George Neumayr: Confirmed: John Brennan Colluded With Foreign Spies to Defeat Trump – “This is the open scandal that Congress should investigate.”

An article in the Guardian last week provides more confirmation that John Brennan was the American progenitor of political espionage aimed at defeating Donald Trump. One side did collude with foreign powers to tip the election — Hillary’s.

The Guardian story is written in a style designed to flatter its sources (they are cast as high-minded whistleblowers), but the upshot of it is devastating for them, nonetheless, and explains why all the criminal leaks against Trump first originated in the British press.

Liberals pompously quote the saying — “the bigger the lie, the more it will be believed” — even as their media enshrine it. Historians will look back on 2016 and marvel at the audacity of its big lie: whispers of an imaginary Trump-Russia collusion that wafted up from the fever swamps of a real collusion between John Brennan and foreign powers seeking Trump’s defeat.

Another one raising ire is by the OregonMuse: Berkeley: An Autopsy – “So who is to blame for the seemingly ongoing Berkeley riots?”

Meet Jese Arreguin, elected mayor of Berkeley, progressive loon, terrorist enabler, idiot. His Twitter TL reads like a conservative parody of a progressive Twitter account.

What it boils down to is that the rioting that happened this weekend, as well as the previous riots, occurred because Arreguin wanted them to. After all, it was his peeps that were rioting, and the people they were punching, beating, and pepper-spraying, i.e. Trump supporters, veterans, honest free-speech advocates, and other normal people, are generally not “progressive” enough for the likes of the Berkeley mayor.

Business owners and residents of Berkeley should take note. And perhaps look into hiring private security as Ann Coulter is scheduled to speak at Berkeley on April 27th.

Things were a bit different elsewhere as Brett T. notes Auburn takes Berkeley to school as police unmask anti-fascists outside Richard Spencer speech – “To be honest, we’re less interested in what alt-right leader Richard Spencer said Tuesday night at Auburn University than it what the police patrolling the event were up to, which was especially shocking in the wake of the latest round of rioting in Berkeley.”

Ed Morrissey describes another hazardous front Beware: “Democratic radical left” provoking a government shutdown, warns … – “One Senator warns that radical activists on the Left have pushed Democrats into complete “across the board obstruction” that will precipitate a government shutdown, which Chuck Schumer will do to appease hardliners despite the fact that it won’t have any success.” The key concept is one of deciding how much to invest in fighting which battles. In a war of attrition, care is needed to assure some return on the assets at risk. The Democrats are investing all in everything and this is likely to leave them nothing for anything.

Democrats plan an all-out fight against that funding, even in a nominal amount, as part of La Resistance to Trump. That much, at least, would be part of the actual discretionary budget process, unlike the “defund ObamaCare” government shutdown in 2013 that ended up flopping — and nearly distracting voters from the even bigger disaster of the ObamaCare rollout. As we see to this day, ObamaCare gets most of its funding and does most of its spending by statute rather than appropriations, which meant that the 2013 defunding effort was a dead end right from the start.

the Trump administration has some cards to play, too. Government shutdowns leave a lot of discretion in the hands of the president, and that could allow Trump to score a few points whether the media covers it or not.

In the end, presidents win shutdowns because they have a lot more leverage, even with a hostile media. Furthermore, a shutdown undermines the Left in a way that doesn’t apply to the Right — it attacks the notion that we need bigger and more-present government in all issues. Schumer & Co can’t afford to have a shutdown go on long enough to disprove their entire raison d’être. Even with a sympathetic media behind them, budget obstructionism is not sustainable for long, and will eventually infuriate voters who expect Congress to do their jobs rather than stamp their feet and threaten to take their ball home.

Another cause of the day is also starting to reap its ‘dividends.’ Jazz Shaw: San Francisco’s minimum wage spike is already shutting down restaurants – citing the Washington ExaminerSan Francisco’s higher minimum wage is causing an increasing number of restaurants to go out of business even before it is fully phased in, a new study by the Harvard Business School found.” It’s just like those global warming studies with dissonance between fantasy and reality. It is also worthy of note that it isn’t the elite that get the impact of the Left’s efforts.

Whenever I write about the “Fight for 15” and the impact of steeply increasing minimum wage rates on employment I am regularly assured by liberal activists that such concerns are either false or severely overblown. There is an entire body of work in the progressive sphere dedicated to nothing but this particular propaganda effort. The premise makes no sense in terms of basic economics (or simply math, for that matter) but it keeps on being repeated. And yet, when the experiment is moved off of the chalkboard and out into the real world the opposite always seems to happen.

As the Harvard study found, the most expensive and highly rated restaurants don’t seem to be affected at all. The closures and cutbacks are hitting all of the more modest priced outlets with lower customer ratings. Unfortunately for San Francisco’s workforce, that’s the majority of them.

There is a tide coming in.

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Marches to Protests to Sowing the Wind to Reaping the Wild Wind

Ethan provides 10 Reasons Why You Should March For Science (Synopsis) – “While there are undeniably many with very strong political opinions, the march itself isn’t political, but is rather a celebration of science and all it does for the world.”

The way to keep moving the world forward in the best way possible is strongly rooted in science and scientific investigation, and its greatest enemy is dogmatic, biased argumentation and reasoning. We live in a world that is extraordinarily dependent on science and technology, and that’s why valuing our investments in it and the results of our investigations are more important than ever.

The reasons aren’t listed but only link to an article at Forbes which has totally obnoxious nagware inhibiting review of its articles. The comments to Ethan’s post do provide some evidence of the skepticism about the integrity of his assertions. A Forbes writer also has a related post on The Global Warming Policy Forum: This Isn’t A March For Science — This Is About Economic And Political Policy by Tim Worstall, Forbes. It is a summary that links to a “full post” on Forbes, aarrrrghhh!

The complaint which is driving the ‘March for Science’ isn’t about an attack on science at all. Far from it, it’s one group of scientists not understanding that the policy they advocate is, by the scientific experts in the policy, considered to be a bad one which should be replaced.

The point is that we have yet another ‘protest’ that is falsely based by people who haven’t applied any of the intellectual rigor that is at the core of scientific literacy to their ideas. That leads to Ace and Backlash: Alleged “Antifascist” Rioters Are Finally Met By Counter-Rioters – “Even Noam Chomsky warned the “Antifas” to stop with the violence before even greater violence was visited upon themselves.” David French describes the Battle of Berkeley – “The leftist mob has sown the wind. Now, the whirlwind looms.”

If the media accurately and comprehensively reported on leftist mob violence, it would see that a pattern has emerged: On campus and in the streets, a violent or menacing core seizes the ground it wants, blocks access to buildings, and shuts down the speech or events it seeks to suppress. This violent core is often surrounded and protected by a larger group of ostensibly “peaceful” protesters who sometimes cheer aggression wildly and then provide cover for the rioters, who melt back into the crowd. After the riot, the polite progressives condemn the violence, urge that it not distract from the alleged rightness of the underlying cause, and then do virtually nothing to enforce the law and punish the offenders.

We are now teetering on the edge of a truly terrifying incident, one trigger-pull away from a slaughter. Campus and urban progressives have a choice to make. Is this a nation of laws?

Every single time the progressive establishment ignores, minimizes, or whitewashes leftist violence, it sows the wind.

Is anyone at all shocked that when the police hang back, others will step into the void? Leftists are fond of saying “violence begets violence.” If we don’t restore the rule of law, we’ll all find out just how right they are.

Actions have consequences.  

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Foreign Intelligence and Cooperation

If you think spy thrillers are something, try In Her Majesty’s Disservice by Clarice Feldman. It’s dot connecting with what is known at this time about “wiretapping” and foreign intelligence agency assistance in spying on political opponents.

Rich Lowry writes in the NY Post that Obama’s record of bowing to Russian interests provides circumstantial evidence that he was the real Russian stooge. There’s no reason to believe that his long-time Secretary of State would have proven less so than he was.

There’s every reason to believe that Trump, on the other hand, will not be. There’s also every reason for the heads of the Western allies whose intelligence agencies cooperated in the electronic eavesdropping of Trump and his associates to come clean and apologize, and for those in the U.S. who orchestrated this to suffer fully the legal consequences of unlawful acts.

Scott Johnson notes that “Smith’s April 5 Tablet column hasn’t gotten the attention it deserves. In it Smith asks: “Did the Obama administration’s abuse of foreign intelligence collection start before Trump?” Smith argues that the Trump/Russia narrative replays Obama’s abuse of FISA to smear political actors opposing the administration in the lead-up to the Iran deal.” There is a drip, drip, drip and it is filling the basement. People are beginning to notice patterns that lead them outside their desired paradigms.

 

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A Sundance Saturday and a Change in the Winds

A busy pundit today, Sundance has Secretary Wilbur Ross Delivers A Message – The “UniParty” Congress is Put On Notice… – “The bought-and-paid-for UniParty congress has been under the influence of the globalist-minded U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and the myriad of K-Street lobbyists, for almost two decades” AND Microsoft Transparency Report Shows Massive Increase in 2016 Obama Era FISA Orders… – that’s about the significant spike in FISA orders in 2016 AND President Trump Realigning Geo-Political Alliances, and Few Paying Attention… – “President Trump is fundamentally realigning international geo-political alliances and almost no-one is connecting the dots.”

On the Department of Commerce, the theme is familiar: “To start, we have brought a new energy to enforcement, working to ensure that all countries play fair and by the agreed-upon rules. We have been executing these trade investigations very rapidly.” i.e. there have been a lot of words, how about some action? The new administration seems to think actually enforcing the law is a good thing to do.

Number two relates to the Obama Political Opponents Problem. Secrecy laws prevent disclosing details but the summary has clues.

Microsoft tries to thread the needle of transparency by telling its consuming audience as much about governmental collection of data as possible. Toward that end Microsoft releases a biannual transparency report.

Within the latest transparency release Microsoft reports in the first half of 2016 they received a massive increase in FISA orders; primarily from U.S. governmental agencies.

The last item is about fundamental change in governance that seem to escape notice in The Swamp. “President Trump has expended nothing other than his sheer will, and yet he has leveraged gains that are jaw-droppingly consequential.” The case study is Chinese relations.

To build upon that mutually beneficial friendship – President Trump seeded the background by appointing Ambassador Terry Branstad, a 30-year personal friend of President Xi Jinping.

To enhance and amplify the friendship and personal respect – U.S. President Trump used Mar-a-Lago as the venue for their visit, not the White House. And President Trump’s beautiful granddaughter, Arabella, sweetly serenaded the Chinese First Family in Mandarin Chinese song showing the utmost respect for the honored guests.

Unfortunately most people are unfamiliar with the severity of Chinese tradition as it relates to family and respect. However, these gestures are intensely well received. Russia’s Vladimir Putin can deliver nothing even remotely comparable to the charm of the granddaughter of the U.S. President singing for President Xi and his wife in their native tongue.

Do not underestimate the value of these gestures and how it was perceived by the recipients as personal respect – far above the level of traditional political respect which would be customary during such encounters. President Trump made this visit personal, and his words after the meeting were all personal, not positional.

The panda fur has not only been stroked perfectly, it has been elevated in its own magnanimity without even so much as a bow.

Three things appear odd: #1) How no-one amid almost all media can see how effective this approach by President Trump has been; and #2) Nothing has been expended in order to achieve these remarkable results; and #3) Accepting all of the above, Donald Trump has planned this out for a long, long time.

The supporting cast today is also in full throat on similar themes. American Resurrection by David Prentice takes a look at a few other items to note. “Let’s face it — the obstruction of the “we must resist anything Trump does” leftists had taken its toll.” … “But the tide has turned in this war for the resurrection of the American spirit. Events have taken place that will overcome the obstruction of Trump’s big agenda.”

Global warming: Science or dogma? by Michael Nadler uses the ‘bury their heads in the sand’ idea to try to explain how so many miss so much.

The Science & Environmental Policy Project is an outstanding resource for those unwilling to bury their heads in the sand and blindly accept the notion that human-caused catastrophic global warming is settled science and must be the highest priority in allocating the world’s limited economic resources.

There’s been change on that front, too. Breitbart has stories on EPA Chief Scott Pruitt Calls for ‘Exit’ of Paris Climate Agreement by Ben Kew – “Since taking office, Trump has revoked a range of environmental legislation—including Barack Obama’s climate orders—with a plan to focus on energy independence and revitalize the coal industry” AND Trump’s Use of the Congressional Review Act Is a Legislative Milestone by Joel B. Pollak – “the use of the CRA is no small accomplishment. Future administrations will never be as careless in expanding the executive authority of the federal government far beyond the scope of the authority envisioned in the U.S. Constitution” AND Trump and Kelly ‘Dismantle’ Obama’s ‘Progress’ for Illegal Immigrants by Bob Price – “Jail is jail,” Butler County, Ohio, Sheriff Richard Jones told the New York newspaper. “It’s fair and it’s human, but we don’t put chocolates on the pillows” AND Trump Appoints Religious Liberty Defender Roger Severino to Head HHS Office for Civil Rights by Dr. Susan Berry – “It’s a super appointment. Roger Severino is a very balanced thinker who is also an experienced litigator,” said Family Research Council senior fellow Ken Blackwell, … LGBT rights advocates criticized Severino’s appointment.”

Writing at the Daily Signal last year on the issue of North Carolina’s bathroom privacy policy, Severino asserted, “The radical left is using government power to coerce everyone, including children, into pledging allegiance to a radical new gender ideology over and above their right to privacy, safety, and religious freedom.”

On the ‘yet there’s a long ways to go’ front is a John Hinderaker report Solar Power: An Environmental Disaster – “Solar power is expensive, unreliable and environmentally destructive. So it doesn’t come into being through consumer demand; rather, by government fiat or subsidy.” The case this time is a 60 acre solar panel install on a National Guard facility for $25 million (plus land rent) that could provide energy for 1,700 homes only under optimum conditions that never exist.

maybe it is irrelevant to point out how wrong the global warming alarmists are, and how severely their uneconomic installations damage the environment. Their doctrine is a religious faith that has nothing to do with science or history, and everything to do with government greed, so rational arguments are wasted on them.

Don’t forget the damage to the less well off for whom energy is a disproportionate part of their budget, either.

Maybe you’ve seen something about “Hold My Beer” lately and wondered where that came from? Jared Keller has the story about The Greatest ‘Hold My Beer’ Moment In American History Is Thanks To This Drunk Marine Veteran – “Have you ever risked life and limb to win a barroom bet, your veins so full of liquid courage that some harebrained feat of strength and derring-do actually seemed like a good idea? If you’re anything like those rambunctious partygoers swimming in Natty Light who sacrifice their bodies for the amusement of their fellow revelers, there’s a chance you’ve probably uttered this phrase: Hold my beer… and watch this.”

As for the body politic’s views on Trump, consider Greg P. KA-CHING! Trump, RNC have YUGE fundraising quarter – looks like a lot of money going towards Trump and colleagues.

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Daniel Greenfield: The “RESISTANCE” Democrats Are A Terrorist Party – “The Democrats have committed to overthrowing our government.”

In this century, Democrats rejected the outcomes of two presidential elections won by Republicans. After Bush won, they settled for accusing him of being a thief, an idiot, a liar, a draft dodger and a mass murderer. They fantasized about his assassination and there was talk of impeachment. But elected officials gritted their teeth and tried to get things done.

This time around it’s “radically” different.

This fantasy is part clickbait. Leftist media outlets are feeding the worst impulses of their readers. But there is a bigger and more disturbing radical endgame.

A similar program implemented in Europe, with a covert alliance between Communists and Nazis, led to the deaths of millions, the destruction of much of Europe and the temporary triumph of the left.

The left has declared that President Trump’s victory is illegitimate. The response is “Resistance.” That covers violent anti-government protesters, states declaring that they are no longer bound to follow Federal immigration law and Senators obstructing for the sake of obstruction.

Jazz Shaw: The media sure loves the term “deportation force” – another case study on this ‘Resistance’ centered on the Left’s Propaganda Machine.

we’re ramping up our efforts to locate, apprehend and deport illegal aliens and the number of crimes being considered as triggers for prioritized processing has been expanded. That seems to be having a dampening effect on enthusiasm among those considering coming here without following the legal process. That’s good news, right? You might think so, but we’re seeing a new trend in the mainstream media this month which tends to color the story in a very different way. This recent entry from the Washington Post is a prime example, describing the administration’s efforts in terms of constructing a nationwide deportation force. (Emphasis added)

Rather than wringing your hands over whether or not there’s some sort of “mass deportation force” shaping up, perhaps you might consider a different approach in covering this story. What’s going on here might have been described in an earlier and gentler era as law enforcement. An expanded pool of law enforcement officials seeking to arrest and deport those who violate our long standing immigration laws is not some sinister shadow government plotting to institute the New World Order. They’re upholding the law.

There’s a war on. It’s only violent in small spots so far. The question is whether society can fall back to what K. A. Ellis calls revelation:

By revelation, I mean the wisdom and knowledge revealed to us by our infinite and personal Creator, essential for navigating both the earthly and unseen realms. By revolution, I mean the overthrow of an existing order in favor of a new order.
 …
Many Christians today are attracted to the ideas of historical Marxist revolutionaries, despite the philosophy’s historic tendency toward violence to achieve and maintain control.
 …
Yet power without revelation ultimately produces tyranny; resistance without revelation ultimately yields to anarchy.

Wisdom and knowledge from any source is difficult. Even Ellis skates around it. False Witness abounds. Self delusion is rife. Judgment overwhelms observation. Introspection and self knowledge take a back seat. The temptations of the Devil are difficult. There’s more to this war than you might think.

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Biased? Incestuous? Conflicted in Interests? In the Media? Unbelievably sordid? Say it ain’t so!

As if you didn’t know, Cheryl K. Chumley provides more observations: Meet the liberal press — a mainstream media cabal with deep ties to the Democratic Party – “there are those who still scoff at the idea of a biased mainstream media – at the notion that some in the press, many in the press, actually have active intents to take out Trump, tear down conservatives, trash the Republican Party, and build up the left. … Well, let the facts speak for themselves then.”

Follow the money and it underscores the inherent biases and ties between mainstream media and Democrats even more.

What’s worse than the actual donations, however, is the denial of bias.

Well, give me an open bias over a cloaked, feigned, secretive bias any day. Members of the media can profess all they want – wear whatever party pin they want – pretend independence and “no affiliation” all they want. In the end, actions speak louder than bumper stickers. One need only look at the dollars and donations, skim through the connections, marriages and Democratic Party-mainstream media ties, and it’s clear: the left-leaning press is alive, well and kicking in modern day America.

Melania Trump wins one. See Melania Trump – An Apology by Daily Mail and Mailonline – Media that got a bit carried away with Fake News and was called to account. A rumored $3 million in damages were awarded in addition to the apology.

Greg Gutfeld is entertaining in How to explain Trump to your liberal friends (not that they’ll listen) but he rather destroys his own point with the PC ‘both sides do it’ idiom.

We are now completing the third month of the Trumpocalypse.

The assumption that he’s anti-gay or hates minorities or women requires a logical disconnect — to make not just one leap of faith, but four or five concurrent leaps while juggling six balls of unequal weight.

So feel free to hate the guy. That’s OK. The right did that with President Obama. It’s a team sport thing. But it might be as false now as it was then.

Where he misses is the the Left is full of hate for the person while the Right’s hate is for the policies. In terms of Limbaugh, who expressed a desire that Obama’s policies failed, the Left now actively tries to destroy Trump the person.

Better advice on this from the Coyote: My Customer Service & Communication Advice to the United CEO – “My company serves nearly 3 million visitors a year. Though we always try for 100% satisfaction, some customers are going to slip through the cracks and be dissatisfied.”

you seem to be trying to teach this customer a lesson, and make them realize they have been bad. Even if the customer is really a jerk, this is never, ever ever ever going to happen. You will never ever convince a jerk that they are a jerk, because almost by definition jerks last self-awareness, so stop trying.”

In a more serious vein is Walter E. Williams on The Cancer Eating Away at College Campuses – “The average American has little knowledge of the extent to which our institutions of higher learning have been infected with a spreading cancer.”

Today we’re seeing the re-emergence of the mentality that gave us loyalty oaths, in the form of mandating that faculty members write “diversity statements,” especially as part of hiring and promotion procedures. They are forced to pledge allegiance to the college’s diversity agenda.

By the way, the next time you hear a college president boasting about how diverse his college is, ask him how many Republican faculty members there are in his journalism, psychology, English, and sociology departments.

College administrators have closed minds about their diversity agenda, but there’s nothing more effective in opening up closed minds than the sound of pocketbooks snapping shut.

John Hinderaker says A Shoe Drops: Obama Administration Spied On Carter Page [Updated] – this is about a WaPo story on a FISA warrant that again supports Trump’s Famous Obama Wiretap tweet.

The current leakers, whoever they are, described the Obama administration’s FISA application in detail. Or else the Post reporters have seen it.

In any event, the Obama administration failed to find any evidence that anyone associated with Trump was somehow cooperating with the Russians–not even a “junior member of the [Trump] campaign’s foreign policy advisory group,” as Page described himself. If they had, we would have learned about it long before now.

We haven’t heard the last of this story, but for the moment one thing is clear: a great many people, inside and outside of the media, owe President Trump an apology. Assuming that President Obama knew of, and approved, the FISA application–a safe assumption, I think–Trump’s much-reviled tweet was true

UPDATE: We are now starting to get a picture of how sinister this whole Democratic Party misinformation campaign is. Through the last half of 2016, the Obama administration was desperately searching for evidence of some link between the Trump presidential campaign and Russia. They went to the length of seeking (twice, reportedly) and finally obtaining a FISA order that allowed them to spy on at least one insignificant Trump associate.

In addition, we now know that Susan Rice headed up an operation whereby raw NSA intelligence was sifted for names of Trump associates, no doubt in hopes of uncovering dirt of some sort.* And we also know that these efforts came up dry. The Obama administration found no compromising information about Trump or any of his associates.

Nevertheless, ever since the Inauguration the Democratic Party, especially its press wing in Washington and New York, has relentlessly pushed the Trump/Russia story. What story? There isn’t one. But that hasn’t stopped Democrats in the press from talking about little else for the last three months.

And yet, all along, the Democrats have known that their spying produced nothing. This whole story is almost unbelievably sordid. The relevant Congressional committees should investigate thoroughly, and criminal prosecutions should follow where laws have been broken.

It is time to get to the bottom of the Obama spy scandal.

Benny Johnson says The Most Stunningly Detailed 2016 Election Map Was Just Released—Democrats Should Be Scared, Very Scared – “Ryne Rohla at Decision Desk HQ set out to model American voting patterns, not just on a national or state level, but by burrowing down to the most localized, nuanced metric available: local precincts.”

Rohla knows that voting trends reflect the true spirit of a people, at least for a window in time. This data is important and measuring it accurately is essential. However, even in our digital-first society, nailing down the accurate voting habits of a rural district is difficult.

There are maps from previous elections, too, so you can see changes. All told, though, it is a sea of red with speckles of blue.

A lot of the Trump governmental reorganization effort to ‘drain the swamp’ reminds me of the movie Force 10 From Navarone. The commando team could not take out the bridge as assigned as it was too well built but taking out the dam upstream was another matter. The resulting flood would take out the bridge. But, even then, the explosives didn’t immediately destroy the dam but only weakened it to let the water do its work. That ‘slow demolition’ surprised everyone except the explosive expert. Trump, too, is setting things in motion, dealing with sabotage, and working around obstacles while the swamp critters are expecting immediate dramatic results and using simple one-to-one models for their paradigm. They, like the Force 10 commando team, are puzzled in that they are hearing explosions but nothing is happening immediately that they can actually see but they can hear some strange rumblings in the dam.

See 20 Ways Trump Unraveled the Administrative State by Sean Moran. 

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Four Ten is not Ten Four, Good Buddy. Whoda’ Boss? A matter of style in leadership

Rowan Scarborough provides an analysis that is about leadership style. The image he paints is a near reverse of what is proclaimed in the Left’s Propaganda. Unlike Obama, Trump defers to generals’ advice on military strategy – “The same President Trump who can be gruff and erratic in public tweets is a commander in chief who is deferential and attentive when he talks to a star-studded cast of his closest military advisers.”

People familiar with the budding relationships portray Mr. Trump as often in listening mode among his generals and as accessible as the next phone call. They contrast the billionaire real estate developer’s affinity for the top brass with former President Barack Obama’s documented standoffishness.

But they share the body clock of a president who sleeps only several hours a day as well as a disdain for political correctness.

“No. 1, they get along very well,” said the former officer. “I call it street sense. They know how to talk the line, and Trump does too. Trump is like talking to a concrete worker. These two generals have got a man who listens and does not pretend like Obama and others to know everything.

Andrew Malcom opines about What Trump’s attack on Syria did – and did not – do.

Trump campaigned against U.S. military being a global policeman. This single strike doesn’t mean that’s changed. His justification was based on the paramount importance of U.S. national security. … But Trump’s action has also now become a new certainty that other international troublemakers must include in their assessments of American power.

Sundance says President Trump Calls Commanding Officers of Guided Missile Destroyers USS Porter and USS Ross…The Commander-in-Chief personally calls both commanders of the two missile destroyers who carried out the mission in Syria to thank them for their exceptional performance on mission. How cool is that?”

One thing about the U.S. is that it’s more likely California will go Venezuelan rather than the entire U.S. The IBD says Taxifornia Does It Again – “California’s far-left government has done it again. Not realizing its real problems are excessive spending on misplaced priorities, excessive taxes, too much debt and a far-too generous welfare state, its legislature working in cahoots with Gov. Jerry “tax-and-spend” Brown has pushed through the largest tax hike in state history.”

All told, the new taxes are expected to collect $5.2 billion a year.

Since 2004, California has lost more than 1 million people, representing a $26 billion net income loss.

Sure, right now, the state is enjoying a tech boom. But it won’t last. As wealthy taxpayers and businesses flee the state, who will pay all its bills? Even clever Jerry Brown hasn’t figured that out.

On the Healthcare issue, IBD brings up the lessons of history: A Guide To Repealing ObamaCare, Hidden In Plain Site – “As Republicans stumble around in search of a way to repeal ObamaCare, they should look to the states for answers. After all, several of them had to find solutions when their ObamaCare-like reforms started to fail.” This is fundamental to what is special about U.S. governance. Let the states do the experimenting. Let other states learn from what happened.

 

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Don Surber on What’s Happening

There is the news you don’t hear much about. Don Surber says Trump is plowing and salting the fields of a bureaucratic oligarchy.

When the Environmental Protection Agency thinks it has the authority to fine a chicken plucker in West Virginia because there are feathers in the ground that might wash off in the rain, then we no longer have environmental protection of navigable waters.

We have a monster.

Glenn Reynolds … “one reason why so many Reagan Revolution reforms foundered in the courts was insufficient attention to the niceties of administrative law. I’m glad to see that the Trump Administration is taking the right steps to avoid that error.”

The media and the Washington Establishment have dismissed President Trump as an outsider who does not understand government.

But as a builder who dealt with building codes, safety, and politicians for the last 45 years, he understands the whole concept of the hidden levers of government. Plus Newt Gingrich schooled him well.

Gingrich gave us the Congressional Review Act of 1996 to repeal bad regulations.

There’s big stuff going down and trying to ignore it is going to get ever more difficult for the Left’s Propaganda Machine.

On another front in the same war is Ed Morrissey: Unganged, or how the Senate learned to stop worrying and love the Reid Option. It’s Deep Change time all over government.

Perhaps one of the most remarkable aspects of the showdown in the Senate this week was the lack of any visibly organized compromise effort.

It was clear that this was obstructionism for obstruction’s sake, which is why McCain and others bitterly consented to the precedent change on Thursday. Had Democrats waited for a second opening to launch this attack — and a more provocative nominee — McCain and Collins would not have likely consented to the Reid Option. Regardless of whether or not a “gang” could get formed, Democrats badly blundered on strategy and practically forced McCain and others into the change.

If Senators really want to save the filibuster, then they need to end its abuse — and the only way to do that is to make filibusters costly, in both political and personal terms. As I wrote Wednesday at The Week, it’s time to end the two-track system that produced the cheap and easily abused filibuster

 …

 If the Senate can’t accomplish that much and fix the problems they’ve created for themselves, then their supposed distinctiveness isn’t worth preserving at all.

This goes back to the Amendment that changed the selection of Senators from a state function to a popular vote function. The Senate’s original flavor in governance has suffered from the original intent as the federalist idea has regressed in the onslaught of Democratic Idealism based on the individual voter rather than the collective voter balance.

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4/8/2017: Overboard. Do we do anything?

Going Overboard with #Russiagate by Robert Caskey explains the strategy involved. Remember Obama’s “no scandals” bragging? … maybe because they were not on the front page and not going anywhere in congressional hearings. That is where the tables being turned changes tactics. They tried it with Bush and the simple measure of their effectiveness is the poll numbers. Now it’s Trump’s turn.

It’s a sad day for politics in America when Rep. Trey Gowdy has to plead with Democrats in Congress to be “constructive” and responsible in finding the truth, but Gowdy knows as well as anyone that his appeal is doomed to fall on deaf ears. Democrats in Congress and their allies in the media have officially become obsessed with the alleged links between the Trump administration and Russia, and it has very little to do with concerns over the integrity of the electoral process or the fate of American democracy.

In reality, the president’s opponents see the investigations into Trump campaign associates and hangers-on as an invaluable weapon.

as long as the press and the Democrats can keep RussiaGate on the front page, President Trump and the GOP will never have a chance to tackle their legislative priorities and will be stuck in a constant cycle of mini-scandals that undermine the administration without ever actually impugning it.

President Trump’s opponents will continue to lay this trap for as long as they can, and the administration needs to take care not to fall into it by indulging conspiracy theories and letting themselves get bogged down fighting interference actions.

This last is ‘swamp critter’ advice and it does not appear that the President is playing that game. He has another approach and a lot of the ‘politics as usual’ paradigm people haven’t yet Grokked the Scene.

Democrats Aren’t the Opposition. The Media Is by Amanda Carpenter – “Where, oh, where is the leader of the loyal Democratic opposition these days?” This is a trying to come to grips with reality story with alternative hypotheses being examined to find one that is most comfortable for the moment.

For those making purely political calculations, it makes far more sense for team Trump to attack the members of the media, who represent a serious threat to Trump’s influence and power, than the Democrats, who appear to be no threat at all.

The only thing standing between Trump and his agenda, whatever that is, is the media. Just look at how terribly the Democrats have handled the nomination of Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch.

The problem is that the media problem is well known and understood and the President has been addressing it. One only has to look at the howling from the media to see this. One thing the President has not done is to simplify any issues and problems that confront him and this particular propaganda problem is just another example. The President’s response to problems has many facets and both short and long term implications. Those who do not pay attention, those who over-simplify, they are going to face ongoing dissonance.

John Sexton on Nikki Haley’s UN warning: ‘We are prepared to do more but we hope that will not be necessary.’ – Russia is being called out: “they are either complicit, incompetent or foolish.”

Haley placed blame on the Russian government saying, “Every time Assad has crossed the line of human decency, Russia has stood beside him.” Haley then examined Russia’s failure in Syria as the Russian representative sat perusing his phone and mostly avoiding eye contact.

“It could be that Russia is knowingly allowing chemical weapons to remain in Syria. It could be that Russia has been incompetent in its efforts to remove the chemical weapons. Or it could be that the Assad regime is playing the Russians for fools, telling them that there are no chemical weapons, all the while stockpiling them on their bases.

“The world is waiting for the Russian government to act responsibly in Syria,” Haley said. After outlining what the U.S. expected from Syria and its allies in the future, Haley gave a final warning: “The United States took a very measured step last night. We are prepared to do more but we hope that will not be necessary.”

Patience.There’s something new and different on the table and it will take a while to see what kind of difference it makes.

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4/7/2017: Missiles and Barricades and Causes

In the Washington Times this morning Mercedes Schlapp says Nunes takes the high road as Democrats offer only obstruction – that’s all about the misuse of the Office on Congressional Ethics to pursue political gains. Stephen Dinan provides a history lesson as Schumer advances his crusade to make ideology the focus of Supreme Court nominations – that’s a crusade by Democrats to destroy the rule of law that is, of course, blamed on Republicans. Cheryl K. Chumley points out why Preet Bharara’s anti-Trump ‘diss a red flag on Obama holdovers – for the Left it is always a win/lose issue and they do not accept a reality such as the will of the voter as a loss. Steve Milloy says The EPA lied — nobody died. “The Environmental Protection Agency’s human experiment program exaggerated the danger of outdoor pollutants.” The Left will fabricate reality, if needed, to suit their desires. The EPA case parallels the climate effort. Anthony J. Sadar and Susan Z. Forney pick up on another front is this effort to impose the real world on the Left in The changing world of climate change – “With its rollback of climate rules, the Trump administration taps the brakes on the unsettled ‘settled science’.” Then there’s a report about a slapdown of an international crime that was specific, focused, and timely – components of any effective discipline. If that’s too much of a Right bias, there’s an essay by Donald Lambro that is full of doom and gloom FUD mongering about what is coming over the horizon to bite the President, and the U.S.A.

On that Syrian Strike, the howling is rather isolated. The Daily Mail notes that Hillary Clinton called for the US to toughen up its response to Assad’s atrocities just hours before Trump launched strikes on Syria – “Clinton reiterated how she had favored a tougher approach against Assad when she was Secretary of State.” They’ve also got Thank you, Mr Trump! First images of damage at Assad’s burnt-out airbase emerge as tearful Syrians cheer US missile raid – “US missiles appear to have shattered hangars, destroyed at least nine Syrian jets, weapons and a fuel store, as well as leaving left giant craters in the runway at al-Shayrat military airfield near Homs.” … “Anti-Assad Syrians have been celebrating the strike after the horrific chemical weapons attack – critics in the country say that the US should be focussing on destroying ISIS.” Sundance has a report on the Clear and Concise Pentagon Statement on U.S. Missile Strike Against Shayrat Airfield in Syria… – “The U.S. is stating evidence that Bashir Assad did launch chemical weapons from this exact airbase, and Russia was willfully blind in their complicity.”

Meanwhile the New York Post opines that The filibuster war was all about Democrats’ excesses – “For all Democrats’ hyperbolic howls of outrage over Senate Republicans’ vote Thursday to “go nuclear” and end the filibuster for Supreme Court nominations, it is without question the left that has driven the “judge wars” to this point.”

And, no, Republicans didn’t help the cause of Senate comity by refusing even a hearing for Garland last year. But they were simply applying a standard — the “Biden rule,” after Sen. Joe Biden — that Democrats set long ago, when the shoe was on the other foot in the last year of Republican presidencies.

What the GOP has really done is ensure, as Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said, that there will no longer be two sets of standards: one for a Democratic president’s nominees and another for a Republican.

But J.M. Opal has a different view at Time: America Should Never Be ‘Great Again’ – “President Donald Trump is different. Unlike any of his forty-four predecessors, he does not even pretend to care about constitutional rules or official protocols. He has no need for facts or norms.” That is full TDS gone ‘round the bend’ with no regard for reality directly at hand. He even sees this but doesn’t recognize what he is saying.

More profoundly, we could see each other as flawed and vulnerable members of the same society, as civic brothers and sisters who are equally American. No longer dazed by frontier mythologies or blocked by Constitutional rules, we could think boldly and practically about a happier, more caring nation — one based on a new Bill of Rights, perhaps, or even on a new Constitution.

A similar, and related, delusion, is about how Shrieking Tantrum Throwing Titty Babies Score Another Awesome Victory Against Ever Saying Anything Even Mildly Clever [Warden] – “you might have missed this monstrous act of violence perpetrated against all women everywhere.” A jewelry store put up a billboard suggesting “Sometimes, it’s OK to throw rocks at girls” displaying some of their favorites (diamonds, rubies, emeralds, …).

Rather than apologize, they could have amped up the aggression by responding, “Well, we’re not too worried. The kind of people who lose their minds over an innocent turn of phrase aren’t our customer base–they’re far too ugly and hateful for any man to gift them with something so thoughtful and precious as fine jewelry, so we can safely ignore their tantrums.”

I’d lay down money that the response would have been largely positive and resulted in increased sales. People are fed up with all this chicken-shit bullying and, as Trump has shown us, these hypocritical scolds only have the power you grant them.

Keep in mind, there’s likely a high correlation between the population that is outraged over the billboard and the population that thinks it is OK to stone a woman to death in the mid-East because she offended her owner.

Ed Morrissey comments on Politico: Ivanka’s secret meeting with Planned Parenthood turned out as well as you’d expect – “Experienced politicians (and “advisers,” paid or not) recognize that Planned Parenthood does not operate on the principle of moderation. With pro-abortion groups like PP and NAF, you’re either a true believer, a heretic, or an apostate. They aren’t interested in back channels, especially not with Republican administrations. Ivanka did nothing but make herself a target for Richards et al.” There are many other examples, the SCOTUS nominee process being a glaring one right now. Not only is the line solid, anyone who dares think ‘moderation’ is going to get slimed and bullied.

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4/6/2017: Overlimit. Too much. Enough already

Jenny Beth Martin: Democrats continue to blow Up Senate tradition – “Sen. Chuck Schumer dusts off his playbook.”

Liberal media outlets are decrying the end of the Senate’s venerable traditions and putting the blame – where else? – squarely at the feet of Senate Republicans. The New York Times laments that the Republicans’ decision to end the use of the filibuster for Supreme Court nominees is further proof of the “decaying standards of civility among lawmakers.”

A brief history lesson is in order.

President Obama once famously remarked that “elections have consequences.” Indeed. But Democrats would do well to remember that sometimes elections are the consequence. November 2018 could end up being a devastating consequence for the Democrats’ fool’s errand in filibustering Judge Gorsuch.

Ed Morrissey takes note that the Reid Option has nuances: Senate GOP ready to go nuclear — with a side of tactical – when you pick a fight … well, go back to that VDH column cited above.

Let’s just say that McConnell plans to make it verrrry interesting. Not only will Democrats not have the filibuster on Gorsuch, they may end up with only a fraction of the normal time on future nominees too. They can also thank Harry Reid for this change, too

Not that it isn’t justified on its own. Reid pulled that one out of his hat in 2013 to deal with a significant number of appointments in a short period of time, so the precedent exists … Democrats have gone full obstructionist on Trump appointments, using procedural tricks to delay confirmation as long as possible on practically every Cabinet appointment. What better way to make them pay for that privilege than to reimpose yet another Reid innovation on the Democratic minority?

Judson Phillips: Ronald Reagan warned us – “Dems put liberty, freedom on the brink of extinction.” This is the sort of rhetoric commonly seen from the Left: hyperbolic and extreme. The difference is that the Left is talking fear about what is to come (with Republicans in charge) while this is based on what has already happened (with Democrats in charge).

Ronald Reagan warned Americans that freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. America is one generation removed from the late President Reagan’s term in office, and freedom now teeters on the brink of extinction.

During the eight years of the Obama Regime, there was one constant theme. The Democrats, or as real Americans refer to them as the “Party of Treason,” weaponized the government to be used against the political opponents of the Democrat Party.

Meanwhile the cover-up continues. There is a report that Nunez is stepping aside from the investigation into Russian meddling because “leftwing activist groups” have mounted an ethics complaint smearstorm. Renewed attacks on Gorka have earmarks of Soviet propaganda playbook by Monica Showalter is another example of the same tactic. “Now The Forward is back with more grotesquely false attacks, not the least bit concerned about its reputation.”

The reporting about Steve Bannon is an example of Swamp limited paradigms. Headlines were about “removal” and demotion and whatnot. A closer look at reality indicates that Bannon’s role is as an adviser and roving troubleshooter. His NSC appointment was sharply criticized by the Swamp Critters so they are happy about his being relieved. What they don’t understand is the implications of Bannon’s statement that his role was to “de-operationalize” the NSC. i.e. his role was to ‘fix’ the mess Susan Rice left behind. See ‘Other Fish to Fry’: Despite Screaming Headlines, Bannon News Considered ‘Logical Evolution’ – “In fact, his changing role in the Trump administration was planned, according to Bannon.”

Or see the NY Post on Why the media want to bury the Susan Rice ‘unmasking’ news

The folks at CNN and MSNBC are working overtime to splash cold water all over the startling disclosure that President Barack Obama’s national security adviser, Susan Rice, was behind the “unmasking” of Trumpites in transcripts of calls with Russian officials.

“Another fake scandal being peddled by right-wing media” is what CNN anchor Chris Cuomo (brother of New York’s Democratic governor) called it.

Then there’s Eli Lake conflating importance and manufacturing reality to support his views: The Real Political Scandal? Actually, There Are Two – “Depending on where the facts lead, we will know whether Obama’s national security adviser, Susan Rice, was justified in unmasking the names of Trump transition officials or whether the media’s obsession with the government’s Russia investigation was warranted.” For Trump, it’s suspicion and speculation. For the Obama camp, it is history and evidence.

It’s possible that Trump was just an unwitting beneficiary of this foreign meddling. But he and his associates have seemingly gone out of their way to act guilty.

in the meantime, Trump’s political opponents have weaponized the allegations of collusion against him. This does not support Trump’s claim that Obama illegally wiretapped Trump Tower.

Concern about unmasking is not a smokescreen, a nothing-burger or a diversionary tactic. It’s a real story. So is how Russia helped Trump win the White House. Don’t trust anyone who says “There’s nothing to see here.”

The facts are there but you have to look carefully to find them. The Russian collusion conspiracy depends solely upon Podesta’s physhing email breach coupled with paranoia about routine foreign leader communications by an incoming administration. The ‘wiretapping’ conspiracy depends upon front page news articles and whistleblowers. The ‘authorities’ have repeatedly asserted that the Russians did not hack the election yet that doesn’t seem to faze the likes of Lake.

John Podhoretz picks up on the deceit in Unravelling the Team Obama anti-Trump leak machine – “She didn’t “leak,” she only “unmasked.” This is former National Security Adviser Susan Rice’s self-defense.”

It’s important to note that Rice wasn’t an intelligence official or analyst. She was a foreign-policy aide. She had no need of operational intelligence in these cases.

The obvious question to ask when it comes to the unmaskings is whether they were secured, by Rice or others, at least in part to make it possible for someone else to leak names and information at some point. Her deputy Ben Rhodes bragged about his ability to control the Washington conversation when it came to the Iran nuclear deal, for example.

Because we know that did happen. We know someone leaked the unmasked information.

It is at precisely such moments of high melodrama that committing a crime like leaking the name of an American caught in telephone surveillance of a foreign national might seem like the truly moral thing to do, given the horror of an untrammeled and undiminished President Trump bestriding the narrow world like a Colossus.

None of this is to say the subject of Russian meddling isn’t the paramount concern. It is. But examining and getting the real story on the discomfiting behavior of the Obama White House in its final months is being all too flippantly dismissed by people who would be screaming bloody murder if Susan Rice were, say, Scooter Libby.

Where the obfuscation about “Russian meddling” occurs is in the efforts to paint it as Trump malfeasance. The fact that the evidence in such meddling tends to point Left is what stimulates the overboard defense and histrionics.

Andrew C. McCarthy says On Susan Rice, the Issue Is Abuse of Power, Not Criminality – “At her direction, the Obama White House violated the public trust.”

It should come as no surprise that the defense Ms. Rice and Obama apologists are mounting is heavily reliant on a fact that is not in dispute: viz., that the intelligence collection at issue was legal.

I anticipated that line of argument a week ago. The issue is not technical legality, it is monumental abuse of power.

Abuses of power are offenses against the public trust. They often overlap with a criminal offense, but they are not the same thing as a criminal offense.

This is why a “high crime and misdemeanor” — the constitutional standard for impeachment — need not be an indictable criminal offense. It may be a chargeable crime, but it need not be one.

If the new reporting is to be believed, Rice orchestrated the unmasking of communications involving the Democrats’ political rivals — the Trump campaign. Her current stress on the lawfulness of the intelligence collection is a straw man.

But the technical legality of any particular instance of unmasking is beside the point. The question is abuse of power.

The abuse of power and public trust are at the core of the Political Problem right now in the behavior of the opposition party. It is why words such as “treason” and “sedition” are surfacing more frequently. The Gorsuch nomination is providing a case study in irresponsible participation in government by elected officials as they struggle to rationalize an opposition that is unprecedented and totalitarian.

What is on the front pages tends to hide the growing tide of news that is likely to make a more significant long term impact. FoxNews reports on a SoCal water issue: Trump administration revokes Obama-era directive blocking controversial water project – this is an environmentalists worst nightmare from either a ‘it will destroy the desert’ perspective or a ‘corporate greed’ perspective or the ‘human plague’ perspective.

“The Trump administration wants to open the door for a private company to exploit a natural desert aquifer and destroy pristine public land purely for profit,” Feinstein said in a statement. “The administration is completely undermining federal oversight of railroad rights-of-way.”

Despite the pushback from Feinstein, the project enjoys a good deal of support in Congress. Rep. Rob Bishop of Utah – the chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee – was one of 18 members of Congress to urge Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to revoke the BLM directives.

Ed Morrissey cites Reuters: Time’s running out for Republican “stealth assault” on regulatory state, you know – “according to Reuters’ headline writers, the GOP effort to roll back Barack Obama’s regulatory expansion over the last few months of his administration is a “stealth assault.” 

Stealth assault? The expansion of the regulatory state was a major issue in the 2016 election, especially the lame-duck efforts of Obama, with Republicans from Donald Trump down to individual House Republicans pledging to roll it back. What’s more, as the Reuters story itself notes, Republicans are even working in broad daylight to fulfill this campaign pledge

The White House itself clearly wants to keep this effort stealthy by issuing a dozen or more press releases in the last two months about CRA efforts to roll back regulation. Trump ensured that the Republicans remain in stealth mode by staging a signing ceremony last week for four CRA bills from Congress

The phrase “stealth assault” conveys both a sense of underhandedness and a sense of illegitimacy to Republican efforts, both of which are nonsense.

So Reuters admits to not doing their job and then blames them nefarious rascally Republicans. And then they wonder why they get laughed at.

Victor Davis Hanson provides Insight based on Ancient laws, modern wars – “The most dangerous moments in foreign affairs often come after a major power seeks to reassert its lost deterrence.”

Rightly or wrongly, China, Iran, North Korea, Russia and Middle East-based terrorists concluded after 2009 that the U.S. saw itself in decline and preferred a recession from world affairs.

Amid such growing chaos, a return to former (and normal) U.S. deterrence would inflame such aggressors and be considered provocative by provocateurs.

Finally, it is always better to be safe and ridiculed than vulnerable and praised.

He then provides ten “few old rules” we should remember “for these scary new crises on the horizon.” It is interesting to note that it appears that the new administration seems much more cognizant of these rules than the previous one. A case in point is the recent comment about not broadcasting threatened actions in advance (versus the Obama shifting Red Line in Syria).

Oh, and there Might be another scandal from the Scandal-Free Administration (TM). Ace notes this wondering Did Obama Illegally Divert Money From Fannie and Freddie Mae to Prop Up Obamacare?

Jazz Shaw: So that green card holder caught voting in Texas was “scapegoated” – “the editorial board at the Washington Post has seen fit to take up her cause in an argument this week claiming that she was made out to be a “scapegoat” for partisan Republican purposes.” Familiar? Same ol’ tactics. Massive amount of hot air and outrage; minimal evidence, reality, or reason.

The outrage being expressed here is no doubt sincere, but also misguided and driven by partisan, liberal dogma. The complaints being put forth by the editors can be broken down into a few separate categories, each of which is problematic.

the “travesty of justice” they describe is rooted in the fact that Ortega’s sentence was “too heavy.”

A second point the Post seeks to make is the unprovable claim that voter fraud, including ballots cast by ineligible immigrants, is such a rarity that we shouldn’t be punishing anyone this severely

The last point the Post attempts to make is that Ortega was “guileless” and just made some sort of mistake.

All of this adds up to a rather dubious picture if you’re trying to claim that Ms. Ortega is some sort of “scapegoat.” But even if she is, we probably need a considerably larger herd of such goats. As long as we have major news outlets advocating for weeks long sentences or probation in cases of voter fraud, none of the people perpetrating this crime are going to take it seriously. And indeed, the Post has once again shown that they don’t feel it’s a very serious crime either.

It’s a roilin’ boiln’ stew of a mess out there. This post is going over limit and the stew is too big for the pot. So you’ll need to get out on your own to manage the stew.

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4/5/2017: TDS and total lack of control

Ajit Pai and Maureen Ohlhausen of the FCC and FTC say No, Republicans didn’t just strip away your Internet privacy rights – The WaPo calls this an “opinion” yet it has a lot of explaining and very little opining.

April Fools’ Day came early last week, as professional lobbyists lit a wildfire of misinformation about Congress’s action — signed into law Monday by President Trump — to nullify the Federal Communications Commission’s broadband privacy rules. So as the nation’s chief communications regulator and the nation’s chief privacy enforcer, we want to let the American people know what’s really going on and how we will ensure that consumers’ online privacy is protected.

During the Obama administration, the FTC concluded that “any privacy framework should be technology neutral” because “ISPs are just one type of large platform provider” and “operating systems and browsers may be in a position to track all, or virtually all, of a consumer’s online activity to create highly detailed profiles.”

The FCC’s regulations weren’t about protecting consumers’ privacy. They were about government picking winners and losers in the marketplace. If two online companies have access to the same data about your Internet usage, why should the federal government give one company greater leeway to use it than the other?

The FTC is in here because privacy in Trade is their bailiwick. The FCC got involved in order to make ‘special distinctions’ to go after perceived villains. The effort now is to level the playing field and put Trade practices in the FTC and communications technology practices in the FCC.

Tammy Bruce is all too real concerning Trumpmageddon – “The Democrats’ fever dream is doomed to fail.”

It’s not clear how long liberals will be able to keep up their perpetual Trump outrage, but a clever entrepreneur should immediately establish sanatoriums within which Hollywood types, Democratic operatives and “activists” receive the care they need when they collapse from exhaustion.

It’ll be rehab for bullies

The media, Hollywood and smug liberals are getting a lesson from a president who isn’t swayed by screams or threats or even polls. He’s focused on making things in this country better. Mr. Trump does have a challenge, though, and that’s making sure his message is communicated clearly and strongly enough to make sure the malevolence of his opponents is barely audible like the old, dead leftist echo that it is.

Cheryl K. Chumley notes the elevated insanity in The left’s lunatic plagiarism sling at Gorsuch – “The left-leaning media, working in concert with Democratic will, have launched an all-out last-minute attack on Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch, accusing him of plagiarism.”

It’s bogus, by independent accounts. But this is how the left works: Smear, disgrace, tear down, defame and defile. Anything to keep him from being confirmed, it seems.

The judge has penned literally thousands upon thousands of pages of documents and rulings as a judge — but the left, led now by Buzzfeed and Politico, apparently have found three instances where his writings seemed suspect.

One person Gorsuch is accused of plagiarizing actually flatly denies he plagiarized.

And another, emeritus professor Jon Finnis of Oxford University, said similarly.

But this, from Buzzfeed … And this, from Politico, a separate headline: “Gorsuch’s writings borrow from other authors.”

The White House has fired back.

The left’s concerted attack against all-things-President Donald Trump marches on. But this latest instance, an attempted assassination of a well-regarded and esteemed member of the judiciary, however, is a new and despicable level of low, even for the left.

Rd Whelan has more on these Bastardized Charges – “Surprise, surprise. Another desperate 11th-hour smear, something that appears to have become a rite of passage for Republican Supreme Court nominees.”

If you want to see another form of Trump Derangement Syndrome, check out Jonah Goldberg at National Review. The President Is This Presidency’s Worst Enemy – “The administration doesn’t suffer from a failure of ideas, but a failure of character.” One of the first clues that you’re not dealing with someone fully in charge of his bias is Goldberg bringing up the “Why so much chaos, then?” There are other clues such as his citations and a priori assumptions not to mention the thing about Tweets.

Trump brings the same glandular, impulsive style to meetings and interviews as he does to social media. He blurts out ideas or claims that send staff scrambling to see them implemented or defended. His management style is Hobbesian. Rivalries are encouraged. Senior aides panic at the thought of not being part of his movable entourage. He cares more about saving face and “counterpunching” his critics than he does about getting policy victories.

It’s true that Trump has racked up some wins — a few relatively easy executive orders and the Supreme Court nomination of Neil Gorsuch, who’ll wind up taking the late Antonin Scalia’s seat one way or another.

Such a diatribe should make for a good classroom exercise about finding logical fallacies. There is the ad hominem, of course, then the appeal to authority, then the minimizing of counter arguments, … it’s a rich source but very typical of those who haven’t come to grips with the Trump reality. Just how far those ‘relatively easy’ wins and such have to mount up to make an impression is going to create a scale for the depth of the derangement and dissonance.

The IBD gets into a result of the Propaganda machine and the dissonance expressions such as Goldberg’s. Trump’s 34% Approval In IBD/TIPP Poll Is Nothing To Cheer, Or Ignore – “The reaction to the latest IBD/TIPP poll showing President Trump’s approval ratings taking a big hit has been, well, depressing.”

Clearly, the left’s total war against Trump has taken its toll. Every day it is wall-to-wall attacks in news, entertainment, academia and every other corner of daily life. Rather than argue and debate Trump’s policies — about which the public is largely in agreement — they’ve resorted to their favorite weapon: the politics of personal destruction.

So, congratulations, Trump haters. You’ve managed to drive down his numbers before he’s had a chance to actually get much done.

This is not to say that Trump hasn’t contributed to his own poor ratings with his ill-conceived tweets, newbie administration mistakes, and a seeming lack of focus on the issues that got him elected. But nothing Trump has done justifies the level of hatred and vitriol being thrown at him.

For now, however, the results are what they are. Reality sometimes can be uncomfortable or unpleasant. But just as celebrating Trump’s low approval is wrong, so is denying it altogether.

It is early yet and the vitriol has been unprecedented both in its quantity and in it’s depths of depravity. As Tammy Bruce wonders about above, the question is really about how long the Left can keep it up. Alicia Colon notes something the Left, and people like Goldberg, miss. It is something that does and will surface and won’t have the kind of stench that the many Obama scandals that are surfacing right now have. The Very Presidential Donald Trump; What A Surprise!

My Democrat relatives were in complete agreement as were the NeverTrumpers in the GOP who ranted about the arrogant New York native as not being presidential material.

They dragged out every single negative Trump news item and when that didn’t dissuade us; they simply made up fake ones. They had no idea whom they were dealing with.

The truth is that on a superficial level, Donald Trump may be arrogant, boastful, a tad narcissistic and he tends to fly off the handle with maddening tweets.

But what I have come to believe since his election is that he is a brilliant strategist who loves this country.

In other words, what you see in Trump tends to be more a reflection of yourself. That is why it is important to understand one’s self first and to be aware that perceptions do not necessarily truly reflect reality. Check your feelings and if you find anger or other negative emotion, be particularly careful.

On those smelly things that are surfacing, see Katie Pavlich about Bribery: New Documents Show IRS Targeting Scandal Was More Expansive – “New documents obtained by government watchdog group Judicial Watch show the IRS targeting scandal was more expansive than previously known.”

the documents show IRS officials essentially bribed groups and offered tax exempt status in exchange for limited political activity. In other words, limiting opposition to President Obama’s agenda.

“No wonder the Obama IRS has been hiding these records. The new smoking-gun documents contain admissions by the Obama IRS that it inappropriately targeted conservative groups,” Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said in a statement. “But the records also show that the abuse continued – as the Obama IRS tried to force conservative applicants to give up their First Amendment rights in order to finally get their applications granted.”

Another one also has revelations summarized by Ace citing Andy McCarthy: The Russia Story Finally Yields a Watergate-Sized Scandal, But Not the One the Leftist Media and Democrat Party (BIRM) Were ExpectingWorth reading in full.

The two moves were required together to start the conveyer belt of leaks from Rice, Clapper, and the whole gang to their co-conspirators at CNN and the Washington Post. The two work in tandem to propel the information across the national sea, like the sail that catches the wind and the mast that transfers the wind’s power into the ship itself.

And that’s why CNN is so furiously attacking a Real News story: They’re protecting their sources, and protecting their own asses as well: In any genuine criminal probe of the leaks, CNN reporters could be sent to jail on a judge’s contempt order if they refuse to reveal their sources, just as Judith Miller was ordered to jail for refusing to give up her sources in the Valerie Plame investigation.

There is a good example of how the Left deals with unpleasant reality by John Sexton who notes that 20 House Democrats request removal of Devin Nunes from Russia investigation – “A group of House Democrats led by Rep. Gerry Connolly sent a letter to Speaker Paul Ryan Tuesday asking for the recusal of House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes from the ongoing investigation into Russian influence on the 2016 election.”

The idea that Democrats are trying to rescue the House from too much partisanship is, of course, absurd. There is still no proof behind the allegations the Trump campaign colluded with Russian hackers, an allegation which is once again trotted out in this letter. The allegation itself has become a means to an end: to keep the attack on the administration going and collect as many Republican scalps along the way as possible. “This is about country, not party,” would sound less like a laugh line if Democrats would stop using these accusations as a cudgel against Republicans in the media. Instead, we have House Democrats continually talking up collusion and even impeachment in advance of any proof.

No matter how absurd or dishonest there is a solidarity and persistence to be admired. This is the battle at hand and many on the Right do not quite get it, yet. The Public may have realized this and the last election illustrates that.

John Hinderaker takes apart the AP problem with TDS saying The Associated Press Is Guilty of False Advertising – “Like other Democratic Party news outlets, the Associated Press is conducting a daily war against President Trump and his administration.”

Do you want to know what is really false advertising? The AP’s claim that its “fact checks” constitute “a look at the veracity of claims by political figures.” In reality, the AP “fact checks” only one political figure, President Trump, with occasional attacks on members of his administration. Here are the headlines for the last 25 AP “fact checks.” Judge for yourself:

We could go on (and on), but you get the drift. The Associated Press was once a respected news service, but today it is just one more member of the Democratic Party’s press auxiliary. There is no reason why anyone should take anything from the AP seriously, if it relates to the Trump administration or to any subject of partisan controversy.

 

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4/4/2017: It’s the climate!

Let’s see, who is it with all the Nazi talk? Oh, yeah. Valerie Richardson notes some book burning as House Democrats urge teachers to trash book by climate scientists on global-warming dissent – “Three ranking House Democrats on Monday urged teachers to throw away copies of a book written by climate scientists challenging the catastrophic global-warming view, saying the nation’s schools are “inappropriate” forums for such a discussion.”

“My advice to Grijalva and his colleagues is that they pull their heads out of the sand long enough to read the book. Then they will understand why scientists, voters, and now the President of the United States all believe global warming is not a crisis,” said Mr. Bast. “It’s time to move on, find another fake crisis to hype to scare voters and raise campaign dollars. The global warming scare is over.”

Kelly Riddell notes another effort to squash, dismiss, and demean for even the slightest of excuses: Melania Trump’s official portrait sparks liberal outrage – “Trump Derangement Syndrome is real, folks. The latest example is the liberal reaction to first lady Melania Trump’s official portrait, which was unveiled on Monday.”

“While some commenters gushed that the first lady was ‘beyond beautiful’ and ‘gorgeous,’ others mocked the image as highly airbrushed and compared the gauzy background — a window in the White House residence — to 1990s school portrait settings,” AFP reported.

You know what I think? So what? The picture’s gorgeous, and her ring is beautiful. She and her husband made no secret of their wealth when Mr. Trump ran for office, so why are we shocked now?

There’s no reason. Unless you’re looking to nitpick. Unless you detest Mr. Trump and his presidency so much, nothing is off limits, including his criticism of his wife. It’s called Trump Derangement Syndrome. And unfortunately, I think it’s an incurable disease for many in the media.

Greed and envy driving hate all the way down.

On the other side of things, the defense is getting frantic. The perp to defend in this episode is Susan Rice (again). First up is Major media spiked scoops on Susan Rice’s role in unmasking Trump’s team by Thomas Lifson – “If Mike Cernovich is to be believed (and I think he is, since nobody is denying this), the New York Times and Bloomberg knew about Susan Rice’s unmasking of Trump officials but sat on the story.”

Then there’s the Benghazi Liar Susan Rice’s Treachery Continues by Daniel John Sobieski – “Call it the tale of two National Security Advisers, Michael Flynn and Susan Rice.”

Well, isn’t that special? While Trump’s pick for this sensitive post was under scrutiny, Obama’s adviser was doing opposition research which involved data mining classified intelligence reports. Rice requested the unmasking of names, something only three people, according to Circa, were authorized to do

Susan Rice was a key cog in both the Clinton and Obama administrations’ disinformation machines designed to keep the truth from the American people and hide what was arguably criminal negligence in the deaths of many Americans at the hands of terrorism. That she should be up to her eyeballs in this current round of corruption by Team Obama, using classified data gleaned by surveillance of Americans to sabotage an incoming president, is both unconscionable and not urprising.

The Investor’s Business Daily picks up on this and several other scandals. Is Susan Rice The Missing Piece In Obama Spy Scandal? – “While the Democrats continue to flail wildly, accusing House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes of all kinds of hypothetical misdeeds, evidence is growing that the Obama administration had an actual spying program on its domestic political opponents, namely the Donald Trump campaign. If so, it was more than just wrong — it was a crime.”

The New York Times and Washington Post have both reported on Obama administration efforts to surreptitiously keep tabs on Trump. It seems to have been an open secret in the media, largely shrugged off.

Then, As The Susan Rice Scandal Explodes, The Russia Election Hacking Story Gets Murkier – “While the momentum behind the Russia-election-meddling story chugs along, the claim that sparked the entire drama — that Russians hacked the Democratic National Committee — appears to have suffered a big blow. Does anybody care?”

The Russia connection was first made by a private cybersecurity firm whose work has been treated as unassailable — until last week, when it had to rewrite and retract statements made to support that claim.

Normally, you’d think this would be huge news, since it gets to the very heart of the entire Trump/Russia scandal.

But the VOA’s reporting, and CrowdStrike’s decision to alter that key report, have been ignored by the mainstream press. The Washington Post, for example, hasn’t bothered to tell readers that its breathless Dec. 22 story no longer holds up.

Where people go when things are not going their way is on display: Potty Mouthed DNC Chairman Perez Doesn’t Share American Values by Chip McLean – “The head of one of the two major parties uses potty mouthed language in public…and then goes on to say he doesn’t care what people think about what he said.” Put this in context of all the disgust about Trump’s Tweets, which don’t go near so far.

The Party of the Potty Mouth is also reaping its rewards for previous anti-American rhetoric. Michael A. Thiac says Cops Going Galt – “Cops are pulling back and yes, “women and minorities” will be “hardest hit.”

Effective law enforcement is, by its nature, proactive. Cops have to go out, meet people, observe the actions on the street, know the “usual suspects” who commit most of the crime, terrorizing the people of these, mainly, minority communities. They need to concentrate their efforts on the relatively few people who do commit the crime.

something has happened on the way to more murders and mayhem. The Eric Holder/Loretta Lynch Justice Departments, in coordination with radical groups like Black Lives Matter and the ACLU, have made the police the targets of lawsuits, interference, harassment and other efforts to stop enforcement of the law.

cops are not trusting by their nature, and after seeing officers being lynched for doing their jobs, will not stick their necks out immediately

And, on other ‘Fake but Persistent News’ is Gender Pay Gap? What About The Workplace Death Gap? – “This huge gap has nothing to do with discrimination, of course. It has everything to do with the type of jobs men and women voluntarily choose to take.”

“Because women earn less, on average, than men, they must work longer for the same amount of pay,” the NCPE says.

Leave aside the fact that his pay-gap claim — based on a comparison of median incomes for women and men in the Census data — has been repeatedly debunked because it fails to take into account various factors other than discrimination that explain the difference.

Economist Mark Perry has for years noted that there’s an even bigger and far more consequential gender gap in the workplace — one that literally means the difference between life and death.

He notes that official government data show that men suffer almost all of the workplace fatalities that take place in a given year.

Colin Flaherty says Crime Is the New Black Entitlement

As long as black people are permanent victims of relentless white racism, cops should not chase them, juries should not convict them, judges should not sentence them, schools should not punish them, and white victims should not complain about the black crime and violence so wildly out of proportion.

Courtroom racism is rampant and if you do not see that, well, you know what that makes you.

That is part of the greatest lie of our generation and here is why.

The over-policing thing was a hot topic on the Democrat presidential campaign trail last year. Berry and Hillary each tried to outdo the other with the sympathy for the plight of the black criminal

So any difference in discipline and academic performance can be the result of one cause only: White racism.

Like the gender pay gap, the black justice gap stimulates a constructed rationale to defend against reality.

Tim Ball has a good rundown on tactics and strategy saying We Won Climate Battles, but Are Not Winning the Climate War: Here’s Why. – “Mann took it very seriously, was well prepared and exploited it for every political opportunity – he dominated the entire proceedings. He had the advantage of not caring or having to care about the truth. His performance was designed for most of the public who have no idea about what is true. He knows this works because that assumption has driven the juggernaut from the start.”

Wallace’s charge that Tim Ball, Fred Singer, and others have challenged the AGW meme to no avail is correct. This, despite all the scientific evidence presented over the years up to and including Heartland’s 12th Conference and the recent Congressional Hearing. Little or nothing has changed. What is the solution?

Trump won in the minds of working and middle-class people, which is where the climate war must be won for lasting victory. They only need to understand enough science to know how it was corrupted, but they must know the motive. Until that happens, all the AGW proponents need to say is that Trump is acting to line the pockets of his billionaire friends. Mann demonstrated the technique in his congressional presentation.

One understanding that does seem to be gaining popularity is that the Left is playing the mind game rather than the reality game and have no compunctions in regards to honesty, morality, or ethics.

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4/3/2017: Lawful Authority, Whose Consensus?

A question of lawful authority – “For liberals it’s fine to run outside the baselines when the cause is theirs” by Robert Knight provides an hypothesis for the Gorsuch opposition. The core is about something seen in Venezuela recently where its Supreme Court tried to invalidate the Parliament.

Over the years, federal courts — especially the Supreme Court — acquired an outsized role in the nation’s affairs, especially during Franklin Roosevelt’s administration. Think of the federal government as a three-bodied creature, with one of the bodies in a black robe towering over the others with a giant Nancy Pelosi gavel.

Nonetheless, given the Court’s near-omnipotence, the central question of what constitutes lawful authority will dominate public discussion in years to come, especially if there is a conservative majority. Right now, “lawful authority” is in the eye of the beholder on many levels.

To progressives and the lockstep media, legitimate authority means only advancing progressive causes. If so, it’s no big deal for liberal presidents or judges to run outside the baselines when they need to score some runs.

Democrats’ various ‘reasons’ look to Republicans like excuses to oppose Gorsuch for Supreme Court by Alex Swoyer

Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer, New York Democrat, ticks off a long list of his objections. The latest is a complaint that Mr. Trump didn’t do enough to “consult” with Democrats before making his pick.

“Democrats have been forced to talk about pretty much anything: President Trump, think tanks, you name it. Anything, but the nominee himself,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Kentucky Republican, said Thursday on the Senate floor, mocking the growing list of complaints.

two months after Mr. Trump nominated Judge Gorsuch, Democrats still are searching for a consensus line of attack against him.

It’s a case of throwing mud and hoping something will stick. That is not a tactic breeding effective governance. Democrats are finding that a lot of what they throw is reflecting back on them.

Cheryl K. Chumley says Another Dem boards the impeachment fantasy train – in this case, Fox News token Leftist Juan Williams.

Could the left please, please, please get it in their heads that prosecution generally follows crime — not precedes it?

And that simply believing someone’s guilty of something is not, in fact, proof positive of guilt?

Perception is not — Not, with a capital “N” — proof. It’s not guilt. It’s not even allegation. In this case, in this polling case, it’s just really what the guy next door thinks.

All this current talk about impeachment of Trump, whether it’s from Rep. Maxine Waters, who’s made it a personal goal of hers to boot the president from the White House, or most recently, from Williams, fact is there are no facts, no pieces of evidence and, most importantly, no charges to impeach Trump.

And honestly, the more the left talks about it, the more irrational they seem.

The Russian Collusion Conspiracy is a big keystone for the likes of Williams. Kurt thinks The Russiagate Scam Will Blow Up In The Democrats’ Smug Faces.

If you’re stressed out about this whole Russian nonsense, relax – Donald Trump didn’t do anything wrong, and he’s not going be impeached, arrested, or ritually disemboweled. When the truth comes out and it explodes in the Democrats’ soft, girlish hands, we’ll all be laughing and toasting their humiliation with Stoli shots.

But neither absurdity of conclusions, lack of evidence, distortion of language, innuendo or anything else has made an impact. All reality does is to stimulate psychiatric defensive behaviors that get really, really, ugly and highly destructive of all in the vicinity.

John Hinderaker picks up on this saying It’s 2004 All Over Again – “Lately we’ve been hearing a lot about truth. It started with hysteria over “fake news” during the last election season. The “truth” narrative went into overdrive with President Trump’s unexpected (by most) victory.”

Actually, none of the current controversies has anything to do with the nature of truth, or whether truth is (figuratively speaking) on its deathbed. Liberal journalists are just getting the vapors because, once again, they have been found out. When Donald Trump succeeded Barack Obama as president, they went from a gaggle of slobbering groupies to a pack of baying hyenas. Some people approve of the head-snapping, 180-degree reversal, while others don’t. But everyone knows it happened.

The liberal media have a couple of problems. One is manifest bias. Another is gross incompetence. We and others have documented so many lies, and so many errors, coming from the New York Times, the Washington Post, CBS, CNN, etc., that few have any confidence in their reporting. That is as it should be.

The crisis that we face is not epistemological, it is political. There is no shortage of evidence, and the truth is rather clear: liberal governance has failed. The country is awash in debt, its influence around the world is in decline, its social programs have mostly failed, its borders are porous, its governing class is corrupt and incompetent, and in recent years its leaders have not even tried to advance the interests of the American people.

That is the truth. That is why Donald Trump was elected president, and why Republicans now dominate at every level of government. And that is why liberal journalists are in a panic.

Another such fantasy, as illustrated by the LA Times, is described by Kelly Riddell: Mainstream media: Trump’s first 100 days worst ever. Really?The LA Times editorial board decided to do a four-part series on our “dishonest president” starting on Sunday, writing, in part, “nothing prepared us for the magnitude of this train wreck.”

Of course, all of this is absurd — and predictably over the top from a press corps that has never approved of his candidacy, let alone his presidency.

Mr. Trump has withdrawn from TPP, approved the build-out of the Keystone XL and Dakota Access Pipelines, proposed a streamlined budget which includes a Reagan-era increase to national defense, started to enforce our immigration laws, which decreased illegal border crossing by 40 percent in his first month, and has nominated Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court — a process that has gone incredibly smooth.

The stock market has reached its highest since the early 1990s, the Dow Jones broke through the 20,000-point threshold for the first time, and manufacturing and mining jobs have rebounded in Mr. Trump’s first jobs report.

As for the idea that Mr. Trump’s first 100 is the “worst we’ve ever seen in a president”?

Lucianne also mentions the story, Our Dishonest President, as “The most astonishing editorial ever written. Be sure to read our commentary.”

On the Falsity of Climate Consensus: Judith Curry’s March 29, 2017, Testimony – “Groupthink” … “sausage making” … “bullying” … “substantial uncertainties” … “premature consensus” … These terms were used by the scholarly Judith Curry in her important, the-future-will-note Congressional testimony last week against the neo-Malthusian, nature-is-optimal natural-science community.”

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4/2/2017: The Narrative: compare and contrast

Jazz Shaw dissects the propaganda on Government shutdowns: a tale of two media narratives – “The next chapter of the Resist! movement is beginning to build up a head of steam and it centers around the possibility that an impasse on spending authorization could lead to a government shutdown.”

Sounds absolutely heroic, doesn’t it? The party in power can be brought to heel if the Democrats can cleverly exercise their power.

Compare that to a different story. This one was unfolding in October of 2013.

That seems… different somehow, doesn’t it? “Bracing” for a shutdown. Republicans are “demanding” while President Obama and Senate Democrats were heroically “refusing to give in.” The nasty old GOP “prefers keeping the government closed.”

So if the GOP is in the minority and they obstruct the passage of a spending bill, they get the blame. But if they are in control and the Democrats are in the minority and out of the White House… the GOP gets the blame. See how that works? Get ready for more of the same as the end of April gets closer if we don’t have some sort of viable budget deal on the horizon. I just wanted to put this out there as an early stake in the ground because you can smell the narrative coming like a cow patty on a griddle.

The propaganda will likely remain the same but, if Shaw is any indication, its perfidy will be a topic for discussion and exposure for what it is.

The Weekend Pundit has wisdom on a A Purely Defensive (And Understandable) Move where the SJW crowd went hyperbolic in outrage.

I find it interesting, but unsurprising, that the Left has lost its friggin’ mind over the revelation that Mike Pence prefers not to dine alone with women who are not his wife.

While Pence has both religious and moral reasons for doing so, many other men understand the risk entailed by doing so. Considering the hostile environment created by the various feminist groups, SJW’s, and the perpetually offended Left, it’s no wonder no sane man would want to put himself into a position that has a high risk of destroying his reputation, or worse, his career. Call it a necessary defensive move in a situation created by the very same people who are now slamming Pence for publicly stating his preferences and the reason behind them.

Just consider the recent brouhaha about due process in Colleges regarding alleged rape or the Anita Hill situation or the news about the assault on Bill O’Reilly as part of the ongoing Fox News assault. For the Left, Gender is a weapon.

Jay Caruso: Media Bias Goes Far Beyond Language – “Kellyanne Conway was profiled in New York magazine, and the photos are typical of the portrayals of conservatives.” The bread and butter of photographers is to tell a story without telling it. The picture tells it and it is a matter of the impression the photograph leaves the viewer. Caruso dissects a case study.

Recently, New York magazine published a profile piece on Donald Trump’s White House counselor and campaign manager, Kellyanne Conway. The profile itself is well written, and overall I found it to be fair and interesting. That said, when I saw the accompanying photos, I couldn’t help but be taken aback. I’ve been a photographer for over 20 years, and I’ve done editorial and corporate headshots before. What I saw in New York magazine is something I would never present to a client.

Thomas Burke: Co-opting Jesus’ Name – anything is a weapon and there are no constraints about how it is used! The foil in this case is Nicholas Kristof writing a satirical opinion piece in the New York Times:And Jesus Said Unto Paul of Ryan…”,

The American progressive Left frequently decries the use of the name of Jesus Christ for political gain. I’ve heard this personally in conversation and read it in many articles, and the condemnation is often intense, claiming that co-opting Christ’s name or actions to argue public policy, especially by those on the Right claiming to be Christian, is plainly disingenuous and despicable.

Another baseline: if you talk to leaders in the church about helping their communities, you may hear them speak in terms of relief versus development. … Looking at our most expansive and expensive entitlement programs in the U.S. — Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, the ACA, SNAP — they are all by definition relief programs. They provide no long-term ability for their recipients to better their lives and remove themselves from the program.

What Kristof’s column really boils down to is money. It echoes a Socialist paradigm in which the making of money is evil because money itself is evil. Kristof and others attempt to use the words of Christ to authenticate this belief.

The irony about pieces like Kristof’s is they commit the exact offense the American Left accuses conservative Christians of committing: co-opting Jesus’s name to score political points.

John J. Vecchione: The Congressional Review Act and a deregulatory agenda for Trump’s second year – this is a Congressional tool dug out of the dust in the shed whose purpose is resolving problems with Executive over-reach. Vecchione explains what a CRA is and how it works.

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4/1/2017: Walkback

Ace notes a couple of cases where Walkback is in play. Did This Clinton Campaign Worker Admit A Role in Pushing the Russia Story to Congress and the Media? – “Elizabeth Farkas is doing a lot of walking back of her March 2 comments.” That’s about the acknowledgement of the Obama WH intelligence efforts to learn about the Trump campaign. Another example is Claims that Russia Was “Defnintely” Behind Election Hacking Relies Almost Entirely on Report Commissioned by Democrats From Private (and Partisan) Firm; That Firm Seems to Be Walking Back Its Claims – “From Hot Air, Jeff Dunetz reports that the security firm “Crowdstrike” is withdrawing the report that the FBI relied so much upon.” Even Rachel Maddow is hedging her bets according to Jeff Poor.

Of course, this is because the hits keep coming. It used to be ‘Fake News’ that was the concern. Now it’s ‘Fake Outrage’ – and it’s about time this was put on the table. “Wall Street Journal columnist Kimberley Strassel writes that Democrats like California Rep. Adam Schiff are conveniently “ginning up fake outrage” at Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) in order to bury the bombshell news Nunes discovered” (Breitbart.com). Then there’s Joel Pollak who posits Blue State Blues: The White House Loves the Russia ‘Scandal’ – “But the joke is on the journalists. They are spending so much time on the non-story that they are missing what President Donald Trump is actually doing.”

Ed Morrissey: McCaskill: I’m filibustering Gorsuch over his “stunning lack of humanity” – “Just two days after warning Democratic donors about the dangers of absolute obstructionism on the nomination of Neil Gorsuch, Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO) has decided to, er, go full obstructionist on Gorsuch anyway.”

McCaskill had this much right — Gorsuch is such an eminently qualified nominee, possessing such obviously superior judicial temperament, that a filibuster at this point only demonstrates that Democrats will abuse their minority position to block anyone from the Supreme Court. If they let Gorsuch pass, giving Republicans “a Scalia for a Scalia,” then a filibuster on the next nominee would at least carry some moral weight of having cooperated in governance on the first opening, and might have allowed them to get enough Republicans to block the Reid Option when it really matters. With this filibuster, Schumer’s throwing that away just to make the extreme activists on the Left happy. We’ll see how happy they get when Ginsburg or Breyer get replaced with William Pryor or Ted Cruz.

Related is John Sexton’s Protests in Venezuela as opposition party denounces socialist ‘coup’ – “Today there were protests in the street opposing what many are calling a “coup” and the beginning of a true dictatorship.” Where are the Democrats trying to lead when they refute and deny the established government? Venezuela is the model.

The Coyote has two up this morning worth considering. Another Reason to Discuss Government-led Local Business Development is about Flint compared to Grand Rapids in Michigan in the post WW II era. One went big and government. The other small and personal. There were good times and now …

In the other post, he explains Why I Quit Recruiting for Princeton – “it was becoming clear to me that Asians, with the same qualifications, had a much worse chance of getting in than other similar kids of other ethnicities.”

 

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3/31/2017: Exposure and painting oneself into a corner

New Crime in California: Performing Undercover Video Journalism While Not a Democrat by William A. Jacobson. “A message to non-Democrats who dare target a cherished liberal group like Planned Parenthood.”

For the most part, the mainstream media that uses similar undercover video tactics — which is how 60 Minutes made its name — has remained silent about this abuse of the criminal laws to target undercover investigations against a cherished liberal group like Planned Parenthood.

The L.A. Times, to its credit, calls out the blatant politics behind the move, Felony charges are a disturbing overreach for the duo behind the Planned Parenthood sting videos

The Wall Street Journal was more blunt: “If the videographers at the Center for Medical Progress had wanted to avoid prosecution, they should have secretly recorded conversations with Michael Flynn.”

The political move draped in the criminal law by the California Attorney General is a threat to investigative journalism everywhere, and by everyone.

On the front lines there are three items at the top of the stack. Tucker Carlson’s evisceration of a lefty prof is more than entertaining by Thomas Lifson notes that “A counter-narrative is building to the MSM’s constant Trump-hating. It is not that Trump is driven by hate (“Love Trumps Hate”), rather it is the left that is driven by hate – for America, especially the Trump-voting, America-loving, war-fighting parts of it.” Schumer and Schiff are doing their best to show that this counter-narrative is indeed truthful. Wesley Pruden: Girding Republican loins for the war – “Chuck Schumer, the leader who leads as if his minority is the majority, has set out to destroy the Gorsuch nomination by any means necessary.” Rep. Adam Schiff Responds To White House Challenge To Review Obama Surveillance…by sundance explains the conundrum Schiff faces now that he has been formally invited to the intelligence that he excoriated Nunez about.

The problem for Adam Schiff is the need to control (try to hide) the content that confirms surveillance of President-Elect Trump and his transition team. Simultaneous to that objective he needs to create/maintain a false narrative in a Russian Conspiracy.

In order for Schiff to maintain his public protestations, entirely based on politics, he must mislead about the rules and laws surrounding the intelligence product. Schiff must also keep the committee from seeing the full executive intelligence report that is concerning to Devin Nunes. The intelligence product is “Go8” level, but has the support of the NSA to share with the full committee.

Chairman Devin Nunes and the White House are holding the higher hand because they have the truth on their side and they are welcoming transparency and openness regarding the facts.

This is why the punditry is full of commentary about the process and not the content as can be seen in Schiff’s response to the White House invitation. Going after how the information surfaced is a diversion from what the information reveals.

There are few more items a bit farther down the stack. Biden is attempting to dismiss what is called the Biden Rule in regards to the SCOTUS nominee. The Democrats have used the hold on the Garland nomination, in accord with Biden’s 1992 assertions (and Schumer’s in 2007), as a grudge for revenge no matter the cost. Then Ed Morrissey says Price: You’d better believe Phase 2 is still on – “Democrats have no one to blame but themselves. The language in the Affordable Care Act created huge gaps in the statutes that defaulted many decisions to the agency in charge. Price reminded Congress of just how often it had surrendered its legislative authority in the passage of ObamaCare, and how much leeway he inherited as Secretary of Health and Human Services.”

Guy Benson notes a Point and laugh: Watch these lowlights of Democrats’ shameless filibuster hypocrisy

Two-and-a-half minutes of tear-your-hair-out hypocrisy from the usual suspects: Senate Democrats who were once highly enthusiastic about filibustering Bush nominees, who then lined up to abolish the practice they’d pioneered, passionately arguing that every nominee deserves an “up or down” vote — only to join a proposed filibuster to deny President Trump’s nominee…an up or down vote. This is great work by the Free Beacon’s David Rutz, showcasing painfully obvious evidence that many of these Senators are shameless, say-anything, bad-faith actors on this front. This whole spectacle is quite irritating on one level, but the double-standards at play are so ludicrous and ham-handedly executed that it’s tempting to laugh out loud at these people

Laugh out Loud and similar shaming are indeed in order as the alternatives are much, much worse. It’s what the Left tries to do. Case in point is Progressives are stunned Mike Pence chooses not to eat alone with women other than his wife by John Sexton – “There have been many silly controversies since the election but perhaps none sillier than lunch-gate. To be fair, no one is actually calling it that but quite a few people on the left seem unable to grasp Vice President Pence’s commitment to his wife. Specifically, he refuses to eat alone with women other than his wife and won’t attend events featuring alcohol unless she is there.” … “Every bit of this seems written to intentionally misunderstand Pence’s views, to compress things that are in no way alike into a false similarity and to mock Pence without even pausing to think about the issues.”

Meanwhile, the Vice President had to take the chair to approve the legislation overturning a regulation banning denial of Planned Parenthood funding. As with many other such bills going through Congress, this takes regulations promulgated by the Obama administration over the last few months off the table and makes it such that similar regulations cannot be implemented without Congressional approval. The Democrats are reaping what they sowed and the crop hasn’t been fully harvested yet.

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3/30/2017: The nature of the struggle

Rowan Scarborough: How liberal professors are blackballing studies confirming Trump’s claim of voter fraud – There is the Russian Collusion Conspiracy, the Sanctuary City thing, and, of course, Catastrophic Anthropogenic Climate Change so this sort of denial of idea inspection and intellectual integrity should not be surprising. Academia is not showing ia very pleasing color.

More than 90 political scientists have signed an open letter calling for the blacklisting of studies done by Virginia professors who estimated that thousands, and perhaps millions, of noncitizens register to vote and vote illegally in U.S. elections.

“The Left is desperate to preserve the ability to steal elections, so a blacklist of inconvenient but valid research would be par for the course,” Mr. Fitton said in an email. “Judicial Watch has analyzed the study and believe it to be solid research.”

Guy Benson: Unprofessional: Biased Politifact tries, and fails, to defend its sloppy “false” rating on Obamacare claim – “For the uninitiated, Politifact is a left-leaning “fact check” organization whose biases have been well-documented over the years.” It’s a matter of emphasis and interpretation twisted to fit a point of view and Benson provides statistics to show how it’s done.

Those statistics speak for themselves. Politifact sometimes does thorough and worthwhile work, but the preponderance of evidence regarding the focus of their analyses might lead an impartial observer (actually impartial, not Politifact ‘impartial’) to reasonably conclude that they’re an opposition research leg of the Democratic Party.

John Sexton highlights another view of the same phenomena: Rep. Nunes: ‘Democrats aren’t really serious about this investigaton’ – “As far as I know they’ve done very little to even look through the documents that the intelligence agencies have provided,” Nunes said.

Yesterday a Democratic member of the Intelligence Committee accused Nunes of being part of a White House-orchestrated cover-up. Other Democrats including ranking member Adam Schiff and minority leader Pelosi have called on Nunes to recuse himself. Meanwhile, Republicans including House Speaker Paul Ryan and Oversight Chairman Jason Chaffetz have stood by Nunes. Yesterday Chaffetz said calls for an investigation of Nunes by Democrats were “silly.”

That the case against Nunes is ultimately silly was made clear last night by a six-minute segment on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. The segment featured the usual Jon Stewart-style hyperbole and gimmicks and culminated with Colbert using a chalkboard to draw a stick figure of Nunes with his head inside Trump’s posterior. The Democrats are pulling out all the stops against Nunes, but ultimately the stick-figure gag really does sum up their argument.

And more from Allahpundit: Ridiculous: California files 15 felony charges against producers of undercover Planned Parenthood videos – “Fifteen felony counts. How many felonies were the Manson family charged with?”

This investigation was launched by pro-abortion left-wing hack Kamala Harris, then attorney general of California and longtime recipient of Planned Parenthood lucre, who parlayed her persecution of David Daleiden and the Center for Medical Progress — replete with a police raid of Daleiden’s home in search of undercover footage — into a U.S. Senate seat last November. Not satisfied with merely persecuting Daleiden under existing law, Harris even took the extra step of collaborating with Planned Parenthood to draft new legislation that would make secretly recording medical-care providers a distinct crime. The Daleiden investigation that she began has now been picked up by the new attorney general, Xavier Becerra (himself a Democratic former member of Congress), who decided yesterday to drop a cool 15 felony counts on Daleiden and his partner, Sandra Merritt, for exposing Planned Parenthood’s possible sales of fetal body parts because they recorded the conversations without the subjects’ consent. Unlike most of the 50 states, California requires both parties to a conversation to agree in order for it to be recorded lawfully.

Here’s the latest from Daleiden, released just this morning in a show of defiance. Sample quote: “Dr. Taylor explains to the investigators, ‘In Arizona, if the fetus comes out with any signs of life, we’re supposed to transport it. To the hospital.’ When one investigator then asks, ‘Is there any standard procedure for verifying signs of of life?’ Dr. Taylor replies, ‘Well, the thing is, I mean the key is, you need to pay attention to who’s in the room, right?’” No public interest in having that exposed, right?

Andrew Malcolm is wondering Are there any adults in Washington? Schumer and Trump no longer talking and notes one of the critical differences in the political debate.

Now, Schumer calls Trump a “liar” and Trump calls Schumer the Democrats’ “head clown.”

Like Harry Reid before him, Schumer has harshened his rhetorical tone to satisfy Democrats’ liberal donor base. Otherwise, its wealthy members would see only chaos at the Democratic National Committee where new chairman Tom Perez has asked for every single staffer’s resignation. Perez is the party’s third chair in less than a year.

Just what is the difference between calling someone a liar compared to labeling them as a head clown? As a hint, consider that you can work with a clown as that is a matter of style of behavior. Calling someone a liar, on the other hand, is an assertion of lack of trust and trust is the cornerstone of any effort to work together on solving problems in a group.

John Hinderaker notes how The World’s Greatest Humanitarian Crisis Arrives Just In Time – “As President Trump moves to fulfill his campaign promises across a wide range of issues, the response from the left is always the same: you can’t do that.” The recipe is getting stale.

But the Associated Press never lets facts stand in the way when bashing Donald Trump is at stake! The AP’s story goes on ad nauseam, but you get the drift. The AP turns to an authoritative source, a former Obama administration official

Rather than trying to feed many millions of terrorized people indefinitely, why don’t we go to the source and send in troops to kill the Islamic terrorists? I would support that policy, but somehow I don’t think that is what the Associated Press or other elements of the Democratic Party have in mind. They just want to bash President Trump, relying on fake news and fake statistics.

Rick Wallace posts his Reflections on Mark Steyn’s ‘A Disgrace to the Profession’ about Dr. Michael Mann on WUWT. It is a long essay with 28 citations. He covers a lot of ground but the observations on common behaviors from the Left are worth noting.

What I will argue in this essay is that Steyn has done serious students of the AGW hysteria an even greater service. In fact, this work reveals some features of the hysteria that are, I think, critical for understanding it in depth. The present essay, which will elaborate on this point, is intended as a contribution to the study of what one of those quoted in Steyn’s book called “pathological science”.

And throughout all this, there has been a perpetual refusal to acknowledge wrongdoing of any sort – or even any errors at all.

This vehement defensiveness has been accompanied by continual attacks on opponents and even colleagues who question any of his methods

This style of aggressive counterattack has continued even to the point of publishing a book that defends his work and belittles his critics. And as we all know, it has also spilled over into actual lawsuits on at least two occasions.

Along with this is the constant self-aggrandizement.

The institutions that Mr. Strong and others have created together with all those over-busy government agencies will still be with us. And how all that will turn out is something I really can’t foretell. What does result when mastodons like these have been let loose to roam the countryside?

There is a struggle that strikes deep.  

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3/29/2017: Obfuscation and other deceit

Washington Examiner: Democrats muddy the waters around Devin Nunes – “The striking part of his revelation was not that there had been surveillance but that information gleaned about Trump campaigners, supposedly of no intelligence value to the federal government, may have been shared illegally throughout government without concealing the identity of the Americans involved.”

Democrats and their media allies have refused to address this serious allegation on its merits. Their related call for Nunes to recuse himself from the panel’s separate investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election is a non-sequitur and has nothing to do with the issue he brought up.

Democrats are trying to compound media confusion between the Russia investigation and apparent but unrelated lawbreaking by the feds before Trump took office.

Democrats have responded to Nunes by throwing up a smokescreen, which suggests they are worried about possible wrongdoing against Trump, not about hinted wrongdoing by his campaign.

The issue is not the surveillance, but what was done with the information.

Nunes is right to demand answers quickly by going to the source. Democrats’ calls for him to recuse himself from a completely separate investigation are not just disingenuous, but are intended to confuse the public.

The issue is not the surveillance, but what was done with the information.” – The Snowden Argument confused these concepts. Its presumption was that having information was the same as using information and, therefore, any attempt to obtain information was a nefarious invasion of privacy. There is a struggle about this in commerce as knowing about a customer is a means to better be able to cater to a customer’s needs and interests. That is why the mail is filled with ‘privacy statements’ so customers can know what to expect.

When it comes to government and public security, the stakes are higher. Nunez is being smeared by misrepresentations based on compartmentalization of security information. This is one technique to preserve integrity between ‘using’ and ‘having’. The laws regarding concealment of innocent parties in intelligence reports is another such precaution. The leaks outside of secured compartments that reveal the identity of innocent parties is the kind of governmental breach of trust that Snowden and his ilk were worried about. That is why it is the leaks that are serious as they are not about a single event or person but rather about the relationship between the government and its people, a relationship that is necessary for the government to do its proper job.

Scott Johnson says A Times source outs herself – “Evelyn Farkas is the former Obama administration deputy secretary of defense — and now an MSNBC analyst.”

I have lifted the video and slightly modified the transcript of Farkas’s response from the post here by Sundance at the The Conservative Tree House site. Sundance has more in the way of commentary in an update that may or may not be on point or withstand scrutiny. I agree with Sundance on this point: “Looks like Devin Nunes and the House Intelligence Committee ha[ve] a new person to bring in for testimony.” Yes, indeed, let us hear more from Ms. Farkas regarding “the Hill people” and her underlying project under oath.

John Hinderaker describes another one: Leaked DHS Document Is Another Democratic Party Scandal – “At Breitbart.com, Michael Patrick Leahy has what strikes me as an explosive story.”

So it appears that what happened here is that Democratic Party activists in the Department of Homeland Security either created a bogus document or dug up a poorly-researched draft document that had never been issued, and fed it to Democratic Party activists at the Associated Press. The Democratic Party activists at the AP published a story based on the anonymous document, which two Democratic Party activists on the bench used as a pretext for orders enjoining the president’s travel order.

Those orders should be viewed as purely political acts that have no basis in any valid judicial reasoning or authority.

The campaign continues …

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3/28/2017: Tell a Lie Often Enough … Obsession!

Paul Mirengoff: Trump administration blasts Russia’s handling of weekend protests – “Since taking office two months ago, President Trump has taken no action that can reasonably be viewed as favoring Russia.” Yet the headlines today are replete with the Democrat Party’s conspiracy theories that Trump colluded with Russia to win his election. The desperation is showing in the heated personal attacks on any target they can find, repeated and insistent calls for people to step down from important posts based on figments of their imagination, and other irrational behavior. Meanwhile. Russia illustrates just why the hyperbole about Trump as a Tyrant is so off base as well as the ridiculousness of the Russia Collusion Conspiracy ethos.

The size of the protests wasn’t large by U.S. and Western European standards. On the other hand, in the U.S. and Western Europe, one does not risk arrest and worse by participating in peaceful protests.

Readers may recall that Medvedev was the official to whom then-president Obama made his promise of greater “flexibility” towards Russia once that pesky 2012 election was over.

The Trump administration has condemned the arrest of Russian protesters. The State Department issued this statement: …

White House press secretary Sean Spicer read the State Department’s statement to the press. Thus, the White House is on the record as condemning Russia’s action in no uncertain terms.

Perhaps one of the reasons the Democrats are exposing such behavior is that the putrid pile that was swept under the rug for the last eight years is being exposed. An example: Schumer goes off on Trump supporter at NYC restaurant, witness says. Schumer has convinced himself that Trump is a Liar. That, like the Russia Collusion Conspiracy is something they repeat so often to themselves via their propaganda machine that they believe it true. The belief is so strong that no evidence, no reality, no logic is going to change it.

Glen Reynolds is one of the few that get the name right. It’s not a nuclear option. “Go full “Reid Option” and nuke the filibuster. Because the last several years we were told repeatedly how outdated and undemocratic the filibuster is.” The Democrats’ names should be applied to identify their destruction of traditional protocol in the Senate.

Herschel Smith: Homeowner’s Son Shoots And Kills Three Would-Be Robbers With An AR-15 – “He did one thing right, and one thing very wrong.”

This is impossible. We all know that no one needs that awful high capacity magazine, and no one needs an AR-15 for self defense, even against multiple intruders. And we all know that it’s more dangerous for the homeowner to have a gun than it is for the assailants. Guns take on a life of their own and turn and shoot the innocent like they have an evil brain. The report must be mistaken.

First, what he did right. … If an intruder is in your home, you must assume they are armed, and armed with more than you can see in the instant you are making your decisions of life and death.

Now to what he did wrong. He talked to the police. Boys and girls, don’t ever talk to the police. Not even if you shot in self defense, not even if you have nothing to hide, and not even if you’re an honest and decent human. Don’t talk to the police.

Ever.

Even the police don’t talk to the police in shooting situations until the situation is settled and proper procedure can be assured.

Eric Worrall on Florida: The Sun State with Hardly Any Household Solar – “If the raw economics of solar made any sense, buyback schemes would not be needed to make household solar attractive.” Yet here we go in Nevada again as Left rears its ugly head in their war on the poor (re Las Vegas Sun).

Another falsehood that won’t quit meets reality described by Mark Perry: Evidence of employers paying women 20% less than men for the exact same work is as elusive as Bigfoot sightings – “this year’s Equal Pay Day will publicize the 20% unadjusted difference in median annual earnings for women and men in 2015 (most recent data available) when absolutely nothing relevant is controlled for

Despite the widespread acceptance of the frequent “66/77/80 cents on the dollar for the same job” claims documented above, there is rarely ever any specific evidence presented showing that specific organizations are in violation of federal law by paying women 20% or more less than men for doing the same job. What politicians like Obama, Clinton, and Edwards, and gender activist organizations like the NCPE and AAUW are really implying is that firms and organizations across the country are rampantly and illegally violating the Equal Pay Act of 1963 by paying women 66/77/80 cents on the dollar for doing the same work as men, and those deliberate, flagrant and ongoing violations are somehow going undetected. If there were such ubiquitous gender wage disparities in violation of federal law, why are there not extensive investigations by the Department of Justice, the Office of Civil Rights, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, or by Governor Edwards’ office? And why isn’t there a cottage industry of law firms specializing in representing women who are victims of the supposed pervasive gender discrimination, the way there are hundreds of law firms representing mesothelioma victims who were exposed to asbestos on the job in previous decades?

And Nevada Leftists are celebrating because they finally got state acceptance of the ERA – just 32 years too late. The facts just don’t matter and they’ll even go so far as to forget the calendar to make themselves feel good.

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