Archive for government

Saving Face: Mueller, Media, PETA,

Facing humiliation, Mueller backs away from prosecution of Russian entities by Thomas Lifson – “What on earth could cause a prosecutor to walk away from his central mission to focus instead on incidental and tangential matters?”

“Barrett’s use of the words “take responsibility” for the case is the answer. Though not a word of it appears in Barrett’s article, the prosecution of the Russian entities has already turned into a farce, as Mueller is caught in a trap of his own making with the hasty indictments of entities he never expected to defend themselves. So slipshod was the work that one of the inducted entities was not even an incorporated entity (i.e., it did not exist) at the time of the alleged offenses.

Have you ever heard of anyone “farmng out” the central mission of a multimillion dollar operation in order to focus on tangents? Even though the Trump-hating media will refuse to mention it, this move is a confession that Mueller is cutting his losses and leaving others to take the blame when the case collapses.

Now It All Starts Making Sense – Deep State “Fixer”: Henry John Kerner, The Cover-Up Expert by sundance – “Thanks to the efforts of Judicial Watch, we now find a name at the very heart of some of the most controversial investigative collapses in modern political history.”

“The same John McCain staffer who told the IRS to weaponize their database to target Tea Party groups, was intimately involved in Fast-and-Furious, Benghazi, IRS and now -under the Trump administration- “Spygate”.

If you wanted to control or cover-up a DC scandal where would you need to be? What position(s) would you need to control? A) the witnesses, and the investigators. In essence, deep inside the agencies or committees doing the investigation. That’s exactly the functionality where Henry John Kerner comes in.

Yesterday it was revealed that Henry J Kerner (Henry Kerner), as a former McCain senior staff official, was part of a bipartisan DC team who constructed the IRS weaponization program to target the Tea Party. That’s bad enough. However, a little more digging, you’re not going to believe this: the same guy who was attached to the prior investigations, is now in charge of all DC “corruption” and “whistle-blowing” cases, including the current FBI and DOJ corruption.

Henry Kerner is Special Counsel in charge of all “whistle-blowing” witnesses and cases of government corruption. Henry Kerner controls the events as the lead official, the Special Counsel in charge of the Office of Special Counsel; and he is in the position to manipulate/control any investigative outcome.

No wonder the Deep State feels empowered. With DC control agents ensuring the corruption and gross misconduct remains hidden, there’s not much fear of getting caught.

Unreal.

Why doesn’t PETA use its money to help animals? by Scott Walter – “PETA has spent the last few years carefully tracking every isolated incident at the over 1,500 PetSmart locations and fabricating a trend of neglect and abuse.”

“The smear campaign is not surprising, given the source of the allegations. PETA is not an association of concerned pet owners, but rather an extremist organization dedicated to eliminating all human use of animals and actually establishing animal rights.

Long story short — PETA is an untrustworthy extremist group which does not represent mainstream approaches to animal welfare. Their hypocritical attacks on PetSmart might make flashy headlines, but they also reveal a striking double standard when it comes to actually helping all creatures great and small. When it comes to treating animals ethically, animal lovers should know that PETA doesn’t even put its money where its mouth is.

The Big Lie: Leftists Care about Children by Tom Trinko – “We know that leftists don’t really care about this because it happened under Obama, and they said nothing. It even happened under Bush, and they didn’t complain about it then, either, even though they hated Bush.” … and there’s more, a lot more.

Kids in cages: The fake news that made child separation a big story by John Sexton – “after each dishonest photo, we eventually get a fact-check, but by that point the outrage whipped up by the fake image has already taken hold. This is the “hands up, don’t shoot” approach to journalism all over again.”

Check Out First Lady Melania Trump’s “Beauty & Dignity” Photo That Is Now Going Viral by DCWhispers – “Those reporters appear sub-human while the First Lady sits inches away and yet far removed from them.

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Flailing: SPLC, Fonda, and more

SPLC Keeps Denying. Black-on-White Violence Keeps Happening by Colin Flaherty – “Just a few days ago, the SPLC declared that black-on-white violence is the “biggest lie” because everyone knows the real problem is white-on-black violence.”

“But what crazy luck: The more the SPLC says black criminality is a myth, the more it just keeps happening. Isn’t that what you would call a day at the races, where every winner went off at more than 100 to 1?

Maybe it’s just the World’s Greatest Coincidence.

Or maybe the SPLC’s work is odder than a nine-bob note.

The SPLC never mentions how snakebit it is when it comes to talking about black-on-white crime. It has produced mountains of paper for battalions of talking heads, all denying that black criminality is a problem. But videos, victims, 911 calls, witnesses, and police reports are overwhelming SPLC’s fantasies with mountains of real stories.

Peter Fonda Take Note: We Are On The Verge Of Someone Close To Trump Getting Killed by Douglas MacKinnon – “Does someone from the Trump family, the Trump Cabinet, or even the Trump administration have to be assaulted or worse, killed, before we accept the fact that a growing number from the far-left have put a rhetorical bounty on their heads.”

“If has-been actor Peter Fonda suggesting Barron Trump be “ripped from his mother’s arms and put in a cage with pedophiles” does not horrify you with the obscene brutality of its message, nothing ever will.

From this cauldron of bubbling and putrid hate filled from the twisted minds of enraged liberal politicians, “journalists,” entertainers, and academics, spews forth the dangerously deranged like Fonda who have proven there is no line they will not cross to inflict “punishment” and harm upon anyone connected with President Trump.

Beyond the terrifyingly rhetorical, is the real.

Anarchists from the Democratic Socialists of America just confronted Kirstjen Nielsen — only the head of the Department of Homeland Security entrusted with the massive job of protecting us all — in a restaurant in Washington, D.C., and forced her to flee.

They assailed her with her full security detail around her.

Let that sink in for a second.

And other patrons at the restaurant applauded the assault …

Border Politics and the Use and Abuse of History by Victor Davis Hanson – “The media outrage usually does not include examination of why the Trump administration is enforcing existing laws that it inherited from the Bush and Obama administrations

“Mexico’s policies of deliberately exporting its own citizens are decades-old and hinge on providing it a social safety valve in lieu of domestic economic and human-rights reforms.

Finally, it is unfortunate that former CIA and NSA director Michael Hayden and former first lady Laura Bush have both demagogued the issue by respective grotesque and ignorant comparisons of current border shelters to the Auschwitz-Birkenau extermination camp and the forced Japanese internment during World War II.

One can disagree with a current policy without stooping to distort history to smear an administration, especially when such tactics in the past have been used against those now employing them.

Border Patrol Agent Sets The Record Straight On CNN, Embarrasses Host by Amanda Prestigiacomo – “If the media were witnessing what he and his fellow agents have been witnessing, Cabrera said, they wouldn’t be advocating for policy which would act as an incentive for more parents and guardians to send their children to the border alone.”

“Cabrera explained that he’s witnessed pre-teens traveling to the border alone with their parents’ expectation that they would be raped in the process, and adolescents dying in front of him from heat stroke on the their journey.

“When you see a 12-year-old girl with a Plan B pill, or their parents put her on birth control because they know getting violated is part of the journey, that’s just a terrible way to live. When you see a 4-year-old girl traveling completely alone with just her parents’ phone number written across her shirt. I mean, come on now, something needs to be done,” he said. “We had a 9-year-old boy last year have heat stroke in front of us and die with no family around, and that’s because we’re allowing people to take advantage of this system.”

Baldwin then claimed that it was President Trump who was separating families at the border, unlike the Obama Administration. As noted by Daily Wire Editor-in-Chief Ben Shapiro, that is false:

The Left and Children by Trevor Thomas – “In their latest attempt to swing this fall’s election toward the Democrats, the left now wants us to focus on “the children.” They haven’t really thought this through.”

“Liberals the world over should work hard to avoid any debate that significantly involves the lives and wellbeing of children. Most anyone armed with even the slightest bit of the truth when it comes to liberalism and “the children” can easily quiet the left in virtually any debate that involves children or the family.

How did Peter Strzok’s notorious text stay hidden so long? by Byron York – “lawmakers — and the public — did not learn of the explosive second part of the exchange — Strzok’s “We’ll stop it” answer — until last Thursday, when Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s report on the Clinton email investigation was released.”

“Turns out there was more to the story. Horowitz didn’t know about the text, either — for quite a long time. The Justice Department failed to turn it over to him, and he didn’t discover it on his own until the investigation was nearly over. At hearings before the House and Senate this week, Horowitz told how he found the text, and while he pointed no fingers, his account raised questions about the Justice Department’s actions.

The Stanford Prison Experiment: A lie that won’t die by John Sexton – “this was an experiment carried out in 1971 by Stanford psychology professor Philip Zimbardo.” It looks to another case of corruption of the soul by ideological fantasies taking precedence over reality.

“There was always plenty of reason for skepticism of the methods and the results, but the findings fit with what social engineers on the left wanted to believe about crime and punishment and prisons. So the Stanford Prison Experiment was accepted uncritically and given a warm welcome from the media for nearly 50 years. It seems to me there are some lessons that can be drawn from this about people’s willingness to take advantage of the unearned authority presented to them but those lessons have nothing to do with prisons.

Fake news, fake research, deceit distortion, … this is what happens when you lose your grip on reality.

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It’s a war of attrition where one side isn’t concerned about collateral damage.

The Big Immigration Charade by Roger L Simon – “If you sought to preserve the violent, reactionary and undemocratic regimes of countries like El Salvador and Honduras — and, to a great extent, Mexico — into perpetuity, how would you do it?”

“One way would be by providing a permanent U.S. safety valve for all their poor and downtrodden, the victims.

Just as with Europe and the Middle East, open borders can salve the soul and make us all feel good about ourselves, but they come with a price.

With everything for propaganda and almost nothing for reality, I don’t see the logjam being broken any time soon.

The real agendas behind the ‘separation of families’ PsyOp meme by Peter Barry Chowka – “This recent wave of immigrants, coming from poor countries with repressive backward regimes, as a rule do not believe in the laws and the importance and supremacy of the founding documents of this country, including the Constitution.”

“Our domestic politics are increasingly manipulated by, and now follow and reflect, this profound demographic shift. Soon, living in the United States will totally be like living in the s—t hole countries of Mexico and Central America. (In 2017, the most powerful Democrat in the California legislature — open borders activist and California State Senate President Pro Tem Kevin De Léon — bragged that “‘half his family’ was in the country illegally, using false documents, and eligible for deportation.” De Léon is now challenging fellow Democrat Sen. Dianne Feinstein from the left in the November election.)

As we have seen in recent years, law breaking from the streets to the political suites no longer carries consequences for the preferred classes — whether they are entrenched politicians, high-level Deep State bureaucrats, or illegal immigrant invaders. Just ask Kate Steinle’s surviving relatives about that.

Top Senate Democrat Shoots Down Cruz’s Proposal to End the Family Separation Democrats and the Media Supposedly Care So Much About, In Order to “Keep the Focus on Trump” – spite is more important than solution.

The White House press corps is broken beyond repair by Joseph Curl – “His aggressiveness (read: bad behavior) made Donaldson one of the first “star” reporters at the White House.”

“And now, with Donald Trump as president, it’s all exploded. There’s no decorum at all at the White House anymore. “Journalists” routinely go on extended rants, yell at the press secretary, and grandstand in the briefing room with lengthy (and heavily biased) speeches.

The new paradigm is attack — as crudely and profanely as possible — in the esteemed mission to “ask questions for those that have no voice.”

The idea now is, make headlines. BE the news. Yes, America, that’s the state of journalism today. Fake news indeed.

News Fatigue? Join the Club by Bob Maistros – “why wouldn’t the public be emotionally expended from the anger and accusations, bullying and backbiting, “fake news” and “fact checks,” insults and innuendo, posturing and protests, threats and trolling, and virtue-signaling and violent rhetoric and imagery spewed from every direction today?” The data is there in front of him yet still he cannot see and falls into ‘both sides are the same’ trap.

“And my educated guess is that the reason news fatigue affects one party more is that for most of that time, one side — progressives, abetted by allies in the media — has dominated this “perpetual outrage cycle” to wear down opposition to once-radical ideas and erode adherence to traditional American values.

In fact, as I once observed (presciently, if I do say so myself) in the same-sex marriage context, the whole idea of the left’s unabated and uninhibited assault is not to win debates. It’s to extend them ad infinitum, ad absurdum and ad nauseam, alongside extortion and intimidation — until opponents lose their grip on certainty and collapse in confusion, exhaustion and disarray.

It may seem that the objective in this unyielding, any-means-to-an-end onslaught is the triumph of liberal ideas. But it’s really power. Progressives recognize that by deploying rage to sow social and economic chaos, they open the door for Big Government “solutions.”

The Time I Got Punished for Hate Speech by Don Fisher, Jr. – “Hate speech changes on a whim, which is why we need self-appointed overlords to guide us toward correct and approved conversations.”

“So I rode out my time in Facebook jail, commiserating with friends via old-fashioned email because my Facebook Messenger was also turned off during this time, lest I spread more of my “hate speech.” Did I learn anything during my virtual incarceration? Yes. The Facebook admins are every bit as authoritarian and repressive in this digital world as the Gestapo were during their time, but without the spiffy uniforms. Will I modify my speech and behavior? Not a chance.

Mueller Has Strzok Out by George Neumayr – “The only thing Trump obstructed was a partisan railroading.”

“The other night MSNBC ran a fawning documentary about James Comey. It was full of howlers about the unfathomable depths of his “integrity.” None of the clips age well, but one in particular captured the utter lunacy of Comey serving as Mueller’s presumed chief witness — a clip in which Comey accuses Trump of “lies, plain and simple” for describing the FBI as “poorly led” and in “disarray.” Here is a former FBI director categorizing Trump’s opinion, and a manifestly correct one at that, as “lies.”

That’s the fatuous, un-rigorous level on which Mueller’s probe is proceeding. His forthcoming report will consist largely of his close friend’s hyperventilating grievances against Trump, as if the wounded ego of one of the worst FBI directors in American history, an FBI director the Justice Department’s Inspector General has found to be unprofessional and reckless, counts as a “constitutional crisis.”

The Mueller probe is like a Soviet show trial revolving around the hurt feelings of a pampered commissar.

The toxic origins of the Mueller probe are impossible to expunge. His report will represent nothing more than the fulfillment of the “insurance policy” Strzok and his mistress discussed in Andrew McCabe’s office a few doors down from Comey’s — a plot to impeach Trump via harassing investigation if they couldn’t defeat him at the ballot box.

and this morning, Rush Limbaugh is talking about the wages of hate …

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globalism

The elite embrace selfishness, bigotry and hatred of Trump and his supporters by Steve Hilton – “This time, the ideology has nothing to do with policy. The new elitist ideology is personal, visceral, emotional.”

“Until recently it was possible to discern a policy-based ideology of elitism. It was the establishment consensus around the benefits of globalization, automation, centralization and uncontrolled immigration.

Over the past few decades, this elitist policy agenda was implemented regardless of actual election outcomes.

It starts with selfishness. … The next component of the new elitist ideology is bigotry.

But perhaps the defining characteristic of the new elitist ideology – the one that truly brings them all together: from establishment Republicans in Congress, to the intellectually fossilized conservative “intelligentsia,” to the media overlords comfortably ensconced in their affluent hipster enclaves, to the arrogant tech titans of Silicon Valley, to the preposterous and vain Hollywood virtue-signalers like poor old Robert De Niro – is hatred of President Trump. Their brand is hate.

What do Republicans suspect really happened in the FBI Trump-Russia investigation? by Byron York – “The struggle to uncover the FBI’s conduct in the Trump-Russia probe has made some congressional investigators deeply suspicious of the bureau.”

“Congressional investigators came away with the impression that the FBI was hiding something. It was.

investigators have discovered a number of times in which Trump figures were approached, sometimes by people with FBI connections, with offers of derogatory information on Clinton. Each incident was before the FBI says it began the Trump-Russia investigation, code name Crossfire Hurricane, on July 31, 2016.

Some Republicans believe the FBI will, finally, comply. Maybe that will happen, and maybe it won’t. But the only thing that can reduce suspicion in the current atmosphere is more openness.

A Guide to Spygate by Mark Wauck – an insider tries to figure out what happened based on his knowledge of procedure and practice.

“These considerations may shed some light on the thinking that went on in the White House as these events unfolded, as suggested by Susan Rice’s “email to self.” If President Obama did, in fact, state that everything should be done “by the book,” that would help explain why the FBI jumped through all these hoops in the effort to cover their actions. To all appearances, the FBI and DoJ were operating “by the book.” It’s only when you examine the details — and especially the FISA details — that you begin to see what a threat their activities constituted to our republic.

Why the OIG Report Should Scare the Hell Out of You by David Catron – “The OIG is infected by a far more dangerous disease than political bias — fear.”

“The Justice Department’s tepid OIG report, with its risible assertion that there was no political bias in the FBI’s Clinton email probe, suggests that it was written by people afraid to tell the unvarnished truth about the conduct of the federal government’s police apparatus, an agency that openly defies congressional oversight and has participated in a vendetta against a sitting president. The FBI’s leadership clearly hopes that the Democrats will win majorities in Congress and put a halt to the investigations into its multifarious abuses of power. The OIG is loath to face the ruthless reprisals that would inevitably follow such a disaster.

In other words, the Justice Department’s Office of Inspector General is filled with people who fear the FBI. Think about that for a minute. What is the usual term for a government whose members live in fear of its police arm?

And, in the cause of halting further investigations into deep state skulduggery, the Democrats immediately used the OIG report to attack the Republican chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Devin Nunes

The IG’s Report May Be Half-Baked by Andrew C. McCarthy – “The cop-out is that we are dealing here with “discretionary” calls; therefore, the IG rationalizes, the investigators must be given very broad latitude.”

The Anti-Profiling Movement Is Killing Black Pedestrians by Jack Cashill – “From time to time, the media tell the truth about issues that have a racial edge, usually by accident.”

“A look at the actual report, however, suggests that the perceived disparity is much more likely to be a result of black driving habits than police biases. Yes, statistically, blacks were 85 percent more likely to be stopped than whites.

What the media did not report, however, is that blacks were 129 percent more likely to be stopped than Hispanics, 224 percent more likely to be stopped than Asians, and 400 percent more likely to be stopped than American Indians.

the media ask their audiences to ignore all inconvenient statistics, all logic about police motives, and even the fatal consequences to black pedestrians for no better reason than to perpetuate the myth that law enforcement practices are “deplorable.” Cops have heard that word before, and that is one reason why Donald Trump is president.

The Dream and the Nightmare of Globalization by Victor Davis Hanson – “Yet what would become the globalized project was predicated on lots of flawed, but unquestioned assumptions

“The end result of the last seven decades was a far more prosperous world of 7.6 billion than was ever thought imaginable. Stalin’s nightmare collapsed. So did Mao’s—sort of. Radical Islam was checked. The indigent in the Amazon Basin got access to eyeglasses. Amoxicillin made its way into Chad. And Beyoncé could be heard in Montenegro. The impoverished from Oaxaca became eligible for affirmative action the moment they crossed the U.S. border. Europe no longer tore itself apart every 20-50 years.

But soon a number of contradictions in the global order became self-evident. Consumer quasi-capitalism not only did not always lead to democracy and consensual government. Just as often, it enhanced and enriched authoritarianism.

Democracy and referenda became suspect, the moody fickleness of those who did not know what was good for them.

CA does it again, Hillary Clinton – Feminist, Banning guns and Dems promise tax hike by Bruce McQuain – “California continues to lead the country … in it’s descent into madness:”

“ This is simply more effrontery and “in your face” behavior by Democrats in California as they continue to do all they can to nullify federal law.

Lord of the Flies by Bruce McQuain – “nothing is more offensive to me than the exploitation of the various teens that survived the shooting and have become activists.”

“Many people were empathetic when they cried out after the shooting, more than willing to let them vent their rage and emotion and offer suggestions, no matter how ill-considered, on the problem at hand. That’s part of the process of grieving and healing. And it is certainly understandable in that context. But their exploitation, almost immediately for a political agenda, was as Megan Fox says above, done by an “evil, ruthless enemy with no scruples or boundaries.”

this tragedy has been a clinic on how exploitive, ruthless and evil certain parts of the left are and the fact that they will stop at nothing nor can they stoop low enough to pound their message home.

Exploiting children of a tragedy?

Just another day at the office.

Then there’s the children crossing the border …

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History is a harsh mistress?

Look who is mad at DeNiro and the C-worder by Don Surber – “Anger isn’t a strategy,” Frank Bruni of the New York Times wrote.”

“”You’re demeaning yourselves. Many voters don’t hear your arguments or the facts, which are on your side. They just wince at the din,” Bruni said.

Mind you, he does not say he disagrees with their statements. He just does not want them to say it publicly. Democrats need to fool people into believing they are not a bunch of raving maniacs.

His complaint about De Niro saying F— Trump was not because it is unAmerican to not accept the results of an election.

His complaint about De Niro saying F— Trump was not because it is wrong to expose children to such language.

His complaint about De Niro saying F— Trump was not because disrespecting the president is disrespecting the American people who elected him.

No, Bruni’s complaint about De Niro saying F— Trump was because De Niro was too honest about his feelings.

To Trump’s Critics: Where’s the Beef? By David Gayvert – “Never Trumpers across the political spectrum have been hysterically decrying the existential threat the president poses

“Oh, and lest you haven’t heard, Trump is a racist, sexist, xenophobe, homophobe, Hitler, fascist (a word that has lost all meaning in modern popular discourse) and the dumbest man ever to be elected president.

Yet in all of these dire warnings and assertions, precious little evidence for such eschatological claims is ever offered, even as all data to the contrary is studiously ignored. Indeed, the only proof that his critics conclusively, if inadvertently, demonstrate is that they really, really, really dislike the guy.

The Silencing of the Inspectors General by Victor Davis Hanson – “For nearly eight years, the Obama administration sought to cover up serial wrongdoing by waging a veritable war against the watchdog inspectors general of various federal agencies.”

“In 2014, 47 of the nation’s 73 inspectors general signed a letter alleging that Obama had stonewalled their “ability to conduct our work thoroughly, independently, and in a timely manner.”

The frustrated nonpartisan auditors cited systematic Obama administration refusals to turn over incriminating documents that were central to their investigations.

Still, Obama was right in a way: A scandal does not become a scandal if no one acts on findings of improper behavior.

Finding government abuse and doing nothing about it is worse than not finding any at all.

Union suing to stop Trump’s union reforms by Jazz Shaw – “despite fighting for a preposterous notion, the union will no doubt have a large, vocal cheering section among Democrats since they will be perceived as RESISTING Trump. And since they’re filing in DC, they’ll probably find a judge to back them up on the first round. I hope I’m wrong about that, but history is a harsh mistress.”

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Hysteria: global order, guns, race, chemicalz

The Rocket Man and the Dotard by Richard Fernandez – “The public acrimony following the conclusion of the recent G7 summit only confirmed the breakup of the ‘international world order’.”

“No longer do people believe that Hillary Clinton’s defeat and Brexit’s passage was a fluke. They accept it as part of something larger.

What went horribly wrong for Soros in 2018 was the future he believed in and poured his fortune into creating disappeared. The real future, to the anxious anticipation of Angela Merkel and many ordinary citizens is about to make its appearance. What will it be?

WOW – POTUS Trump Just Promised An End To The New World Order (VIDEO) by DCWhispers – “This bit of video is remarkable on so many levels. No U.S. president has so openly and boldly challenged the New World Order status-quo as is done here following Mr. Trump’s short visit to the G7 Summit.”

“He calls out the favorite news media tool of the globalists, CNN, and then proceeds to declare the old ways are done, that the United States will no longer allow the needs of its own people to be secondary to the manipulative demands of the globalists.

This man puts himself at terrible risk for saying such things. It is why his supporters revere him and why his enemies despise and fear him so much.

Credit service shuts down payments on all gun purchases by Lois Weiss – “Several gun-related businesses were suddenly — and without warning — disrupted in recent weeks when Intuit stopped processing credit card payments because sales were gun-related.” Intuit has gone bonkers with anti gun hysteria.

50 Media Mistakes in the Trump Era: The Definitive List by Sharyl Attkisson – “We the media have “fact-checked” President Trump like we have fact-checked no other human being on the planet.”

“That’s probably why it’s so easy to find lists enumerating and examining his mistakes, missteps and “lies.” …

Our repeat mistakes involve declaring that Trump’s claims are “lies” when they are matters of opinion, or when the truth between conflicting sources is unknowable; taking Trump’s statements and events out of context; reporting secondhand accounts against Trump without attribution as if they’re established fact; relying on untruthful, conflicted sources; and presenting reporter opinions in news stories—without labeling them as opinions.

What’s worse, we defend ourselves by trying to convince the public that our mistakes are actually a virtue because we (sometimes) correct them. Or we blame Trump for why we’re getting so much wrong.

Another Big Obama Lie by Jed Babbin – “And now Iran is bragging about its contribution to 9/11 — just the thing to keep in mind in Singapore.”

“The periodic revelations of scandalous behavior, usually to the detriment of our national security, provide needed remedial courses in the legacy of Barack Obama. The Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations’ report last week, showing how Team Obama lied to Congress about money going to Iran for the 2015 nuclear weapons deal, is more instructive than most.

Trump, the NFL players, and the pardons by neo-neocon – “Although I often agree with Mirengoff, we’re going to have to disagree on this one.” You can’t interpret what Trump does without allowing for a nuance that went right past your considerations.

Booker: Trump the One ‘Playing the Race Card from the Very Start’ by Nicholas Ballasy – “a potential 2020 Democratic presidential candidate, pushed back against critics who have told him he’s “playing the race card” when speaking out against racial injustice.” Racism is when everything you see has a racist tint and it becomes an obsession.

“Booker said one of the best ways to tackle racial injustice is to have an “honest conversation and dialogue.”

Booker explained why he supports removing about a dozen Confederate statues from the Capitol building.

Why Democrats Hear a Secret Racist Dog Whistle and Republicans Don’t by Scott Adams – “Hardly a day goes by without some stranger on Twitter telling me in ominous tones that I will someday pay dearly for being a racist “apologist.” They assume I see President Trump the same way they see him.”

“In my book Win Bigly, I describe how the public is watching two movies on one screen. In Movie 1, Trump is a monster with many flaws, racism being at the top of the list. In Movie 2, President Trump ran on a platform of being a Republican who disdains political correctness, and the predictable outcome of that is non-stop accusations of racism. As a public service, I compiled some of the plot differences in the two movies, roughly in the order they happened, so you can compare the two scripts. I won’t try to convince you to switch movies. I’m only making the point that Trump supporters literally don’t see what anti-Trumpers regard as obvious.

As I often say, we humans are not good at knowing which movie is the “real” one because the facts in evidence often fit more than one explanation of the past. So instead of looking to the past, I recommend seeing which movie best predicts future scenes.

I realize no one reading this post will change movies because of it. My only point today is that mainstream Trump supporters are not knowingly supporting someone they believe to be a racist. It only looks that way to the folks trapped in Movie 1.

Movie 1 is where you see everything and anything from the ‘other side’ with the presumption it’s racist.

Sacramento County Votes To Cancel ICE Contract by Jazz Shaw – “This latest incident of Trump Derangement Syndrome is not only ineffective in terms of “protecting immigrants” but imposes yet another burden on the budget of the county which is home to the state legislature.”

“The contract they are canceling was worth millions of dollars per year to the already cash-strapped district. And all they had to do to collect the federal funds was briefly house criminal illegal aliens in a facility which was already in place and in need of funding to sustain it.

When asked how they would justify this refusal of federal funds, one county supervisor simply said, “Our budgets are reflective of our values.” That’s rather odd considering how hard Sacramento is fighting to demand federal funds continue to flow their way in the form of Justice Department grants which may be canceled due to noncompliance.

If Sacramento County wishes to make this decision it’s up to them. ICE can simply haul the illegal aliens off to another facility, moving them even further away from their families, legal representation and support networks as their cases are processed. Good job, Sacramento. You’ve certainly shown President Trump who the boss is now, haven’t you?

The latest “boys beat girls in track event” story by Jazz Shaw – “One student not only took first place in both events but set new state records in each. The second place finisher was also head and shoulders above the rest of the field. The problem is that both of those competitors were boys, though they “identify” as girls.” It’s a war against girls as scholarships and honors are at stake.

99.99% Of The Pesticides We Eat Are Made By Plants by Josh Bloom – “If you are dwelling under the illusion that you can prance into Whole Foods and overpay for a bunch organic stuff without pesticides, this article will disabuse you of that fallacy.” Another obsession assigning evil to a ‘race’ which, in this example, is the human race.

“The divide between “natural” and “artificial” chemicals is meaningless – something many Americans do not know. The origin of a chemical is irrelevant. Your body cannot tell what is natural or synthetic – only the properties of the chemical matter.

It is hard to blame consumers; the organic food industry and Internet quacks have done a masterful job in creating a narrative that maintains that we are all being poisoned by tiny quantities of thousands of man-made chemicals, and the way to avoid this is to buy so-called “natural” products because they don’t contain chemicals. But the narrative is dead wrong. Great marketing. Terrible science.

Science-based medicine versus other ways of knowing by David Gorski – “Those who promote pseudoscientific or prescientific medicine, however, frequently appeal to other ways of knowing, often ancient knowledge from other cultures and pointing out deficiencies in SBM to justify promoting their treatments. Do their justifications hold water?”

“Unfortunately, promoting rigorous science remains as difficult now, if not more so, as it was in 2008. Scientifically unfounded health scares, antivaccine views, anti-GMO activism, and the increasing respectability of quackery like acupuncture, energy medicine, and the like leave SBM under assault as never before.

proponents of integrating pseudoscience into medicine—of course, that is not how they would characterize themselves—can’t win on the science, at least not when it is accurately represented. So instead they use other techniques, and one of the most common tropes to which they resort is the appeal to other ways of knowing.

Unfortunately, there is one form of this special pleading that is gaining some currency, and that’s basically carving out an exception to the requirement for rigorous science for “traditional medicine,”

Many of the cultures whose medicine is being promoted have a long history of having suffered predation and oppression under the colonialism of European and American powers. This cannot be denied and is a powerful force making claims for IWK sound more compelling.

This is the basic narrative of IWK: “Western” biomedical science is a cultural construct whose dominance is due not to its success in diagnosing, treating, and, in some cases, eradicating disease but rather to past imperialism and colonization by European powers.

There’s also more than a little bit of a racist tendency that has been called the “cult of the noble savage,” wherein indigenous peoples are romanticized as being “purer,” more in tune with nature.

I also can’t help but point out that embracing other ways of knowing about medicine has become a business opportunity

Scott Pruitt and the Chemical Industry Collude to Deregulate Toxics by Steve Cohen – “At the end of the Obama Administration, Congress enacted its first significant piece of environmental law since the 1990s by revising the 1976 Toxic Substances Control Act and requiring the assessment of the toxicity of a small number of new chemicals.” Notice the ad hominem, the anti-industry implications, and the ‘collude’ to see the bias. This is from a major university website yet intellectual integrity and evidence based conclusion are missing.

“Last week, the chemical industry colluded with Scott Pruitt’s Environmental Destruction Agency and proposed gutting the new law by limiting the assessment of risk to direct exposure and ignoring the persistence of chemicals in water, air, food or land. …

It is clear that America’s chemical companies are unwilling to allow the public the right to determine if their products are poisons that should be banned or in some way limited. It is also clear that Pruitt and Trump do not care if toxics are deregulated. Their actions put the health of Americans at greater risk.

While climate change is the big dramatic issue that has captured so much of our attention and generates a wide range of emotional response, toxic chemicals may well be an equally pervasive problem in the modern world.

It’s all there, even the climate hysteria, population bomb, and evil politicians from the other party.

If you want to know why ‘civil discussion’ is just a pipe dream, see the reports about De Niro at the Tony Awards show and the audience reaction. Just how can you discuss anything with a hysteric? See also Bill Maher hopes for a recession, audience applauds by Karen Townsend – “Maher wishes an economic recession upon his fellow countrymen” and the audience applauds?

 

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A focus on important things versus inanity – what side are you on?

Trump exposes the G-7 summit as a total fraud by Ed Straker – “President Trump didn’t play along with the usual narrative at the G-7 summit, and the liberal media predictably characterized him as the villain

“Lost in this breathless “transcription” of events is the question of whether America should lead on so-called “issues” such as climate change, oceans, and supposedly “clean” energy.

Let’s step back and look at the larger picture. Most people have heard of the G-7, but very few people know what it’s actually all about. People are vaguely aware that the G-7 is a group of industrialized nations who get together every year, but few people know what actually goes on.

You would expect a meeting of the leaders of the most important countries to be concerned about fighting terrorism, reducing taxes and regulations, and reducing trading barriers. That last issue was the one that President Trump focused on, to the dismay of the other attendees who wanted their usual painless photo op where they could virtue signal about women or the environment.

But to their surprise President Trump focused on the important things, reducing global trade barriers, even suggesting the total elimination of all tariffs in all G-7 countries. This would greatly spur economic growth, if agreed to.

But don’t expect the media to focus on that. Rather than honestly reporting that Trump focused on our top international economic priority, access to foreign markets, they will portray Trump as a boor and an unenlightened unenvironmentalist.

“It’s going to stop, or we’ll stop trading with them,” Trump said by Don Surber – “President Trump is the Great Clarifier who shows people for whom they are.” There’s a lot of critters hiding under the covers that Trump is ripping off the bed and they obviously don’t like the exposure.

“At the G7 summit, the globalists tried to treat President Trump as if he worked at Starbucks.

This greatly amused Our President.

Unlike Starbucks, President Trump is not backing down. He will not open America’s bathrooms to bums just to appease the cool kids.

President Trump owned the summit.

America would win a fair fight, but we do not have that.

The Left Achieves Perfection by Tom Trinko – “Leftists have achieved perfection, and for once not only in their own minds. Yes – for the first time, modern leftists have managed to be perfectly wrong on every single issue.” Here’s how on #MeToo, Free Speech, Racism, The Rule of Law, and Freedom of Religion. Peeking under the covers reveals a lot of ugly.

How Poisonous Politics And Social Media Managed To Even Ruin Sports by Jazz Shaw – “What was once just a pleasant, if pointless, afternoon of fun for the team and the White House staff has morphed into a toxic brew.”

“If anyone from a championship sports team goes to visit the President for a congratulatory visit, critics of the Oval Office occupant will swarm in and declare them to be evil incarnate and decry how they are ruining the sport.

It’s a poison which didn’t come from the White House or the professional sports leagues. It came from the internet and a handful of players who decided to start an infection which turned into an epidemic.

This is one of the sadder statements about 21st century America in recent memory. This is why we can’t have nice things.

Something has changed significantly for the worse. The game simply isn’t the same. It’s probably never going to be the same again. And it’s sad.

New York Times reporter broke the biggest rule in journalism by Michael Goodwin – “His [New York Times editor Abe Rosenthal] point was not about private conduct. It was about the credibility of the paper. When the two conflict, the paper must come first.”

“That lesson came rushing back to me as I read about the case involving James Wolfe, the longtime security director of the Senate Intelligence Committee. Federal prosecutors charged Wolfe with three counts of lying to investigators about his contacts with reporters, one of whom is Ali Watkins, who covers federal law enforcement for the Times.

“All leak investigations — whether they directly target reporters or not — are a grave threat to press freedom,” the Freedom of the Press Foundation said …

I agree that any government action that chills free expression is worrisome, but the First Amendment is not a license to break the law. As such, the foundation’s condemnation is so wrong-headed that it serves only to undercut support for media freedom.

Its absolutism about the “grave threat” of all leak investigations is ridiculous and, if that were the law, it would be impossible for America to keep any secrets.

Moreover, the suggestion that Wolfe was a whistleblower is not based on known facts.

The “absolutism” is about a logical fallacy being used to rationalize improper behavior. The ‘whistleblower’ concept is another example.

Secrets Travel Fast in DC by Clarice Feldman – “Along with the massive breach of security in the still unresolved case of the Awan brothers, who had access to the email accounts of dozens of Democratic congressmen” … and there’s more, a lot more, in the Feldman list.

“You think so much coordinated skullduggery leaves any time for much else?

Is Merkel’s fantasy very different from our notion that a large, lavishly funded intelligence bureaucracy using its enormous technological capabilities to spy on us all and manipulate the press keeps us safer from foreign intrusions and leaking of vital national security matters?

Still denying Trump’s election by Don Surber – “President Trump called for the G7 to reinstate Russia and become the G8 again.”

“There is no way this is administration policy. The president just says things. But when he says things like this, it has real and adverse effects on America’s geopolitical position,” Rothman tweeted.

You almost have to be Martian to be that out of touch, but in their little world, President Trump does not set policy for the Trump administration.

As far as the impact, what “has real and adverse effects on America’s geopolitical position” is the bitter clinging by the American press to the notion that even at this late date, they still can overturn the 2016 election and install Hillary Clinton as the rightful heir to the throne. They see themselves as Robin Hood defying Prince John.

Then there’s the Singapore Summit. 

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Media, leaks, propaganda, meddling, paradoxes

Jeff Sessions Delivers: DOJ Nails Senate Intel Committee’s Security Chief as Deep State Leaker by Ian Mason at Breitbart. James A. Wolfe: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know by Jessica McBride at Heavy. Mata Hari journalism? Veteran Senate Intelligence Committee staffer, in romantic relationship with NYT reporter, arrested in probe of leaks by Thomas Lifson at American Thinker.

“This story has all the elements of a compelling drama, one that does not appear congenial to the major media. Watching the way this plays out will be one thread in what promises to be a summer of major revelations, including the release next week of the DOJ Inspector General’s report.

Leak Wars: A NY Times source is exposed by Jazz Shaw – “This was all the buzz last night on social media and for good reason.”

“The arrest is what it is, really. At least one of the subjects Wolfe is accused of leaking relates to the Russia investigation, which has been leaking like a sieve since the beginning. It’s a serious charge, and if proven, Mr. Wolfe is potentially facing some dire consequences.

What’s more interesting to me is the reporter’s role in all of this and the reaction coming from the media. Ali Watkins “declined to comment” last night, but she’s supposedly the one who had been dating Wolfe and then conveniently coming up with some big scoops. The seizure of her phone and other records related to her source brought swift condemnation from the Gray Lady, which released a statement saying such an intrusion would “endanger reporters’ ability to promise confidentiality to their sources and, ultimately, undermine the ability of a free press to shine a much needed light on government actions.”

The Freedom of the Press Foundation piled on with their own accusation, saying, “All leak investigations — whether they directly target reporters or not — are a grave threat to press freedom. Whistleblowers are the lifeblood of reporting, and the Trump administration is directly attacking journalists’ rights by bringing these cases.”

That seems to be the go-to allegation from the media when something like this happens.

Digging out secrets from a committee engaged in that sort of work before they were finished and ready to release their findings isn’t whistleblowing or protecting the public. It’s damaging the process and risking other sources, all apparently in the name of generating bad headlines for the White House. I’m having a hard time feeling too much sympathy for either Wolfe or Watkins this morning, honestly.

The White House Press Corps: Pull their credentials by Earick Ward – “The White House Press Corps has jumped the shark and needs to be reined in.”

“Having a White House press credential is not a right; it is a privilege. The First Amendment prevents Congress from making any law … abridging the freedom of speech, the freedom of the press. It does not grant license to media sycophants to drive their agenda in the people’s house. For far too long, we’ve allowed the left free rein. It is time to take charge of the narrative and make it known that we will no longer tolerate the press obfuscating the news.

Sarah Huckabee Sanders needs to make an example of one or more of the Press Corps by yanking their credentials.

In the past week, we have seen at least three incidents where this action was more than justified.

The lawless, porn-respecting , MS-13-loving, humorless American left by Patricia McCarthy – “No one can be surprised that most members of the Democratic Party and its media farceurs have lost any semblance of a sense of humor.”

“As the brilliant Salena Zito wrote during the campaign, the left takes Trump literally but not seriously. His supporters take him seriously but not literally. Guess who is the smarter group!

This observation was the most astute of the entire campaign and election. But the lefties never learn. They still believe in their coming blue wave. Pelosi says the low unemployment is meaningless, the tax cuts are “crumbs,” and that consumer confidence is low despite it being at an 18-year high. They see, hear, think, and propagate what they want to be true, not what is true.

One thing is certain. The American left has moved so far to the deranged radical left that even former liberals, like Alan Dershowitz, Mark Penn, and Doug Schoen, are frightened. So irrationally revolted by Trump’s election win, the Democrats have lost all sense of reason and reality. They are now motivated only by pure hate. They relentlessly accuse Trump of what they do as a rule: lie, cheat, and propagandize.

Our left cannot abide the fact that the character traits they have assigned to Trump are false. They are in fact the left’s own habits of mind – projection and dissemblance, day in and day out.

Let us all pray that enough voters wake up to the fact of what the left has become by the 2018 midterm election. These crazy, humorless, gang-loving, porn star-adoring people must not be in charge of anything or anyone, least of all the greatest country on the planet.

Panic time at Camp Mueller By Wesley Pruden – “Some lawyers who have followed Mr. Mueller’s meandering pursuit of the president understand what he’s trying to do but are puzzled about how he’s going about it.” … “Drill deeper and it gets even thinner.”

“Direct evidence of witness-tampering against Mr. Manafort, in Prof. Rosenzweig’s telling, is mostly vapor. “Saying ‘we should talk’ is hardly the stuff that true witness-tampering charges are made of. More to the point, if the entire conversation in which Manafort participated lasted for less than a minute and a half, he would have to be a very, very fast talker to have accomplished anything.”

But Mr. Mueller can’t blame the rest of us for wanting to know what he’s got. Indicting Paul Manafort again, or even sending him to jail to sweat out the needed evidence, won’t satisfy. The reason he’s having so much trouble finding evidence of collusion between Donald Trump and the Russians to cook the 2016 election may be because there isn’t any.

The Spying That Dare Not Speak Its Name by George Neumayr – “Be sure to read the fine print in the media’s propaganda. The media’s pooh-poohing coverage of Spygate grows more laughable by the day.”

“As stupid as this coverage is, it is still worth dissecting, if only for its propagandistic shadings, telling omissions, and inadvertent revelations.

A spy who infiltrated the Trump campaign using means of low deceit is thus turned into a “source” who “reached out” to it.

The reporters on the piece obviously had access to the government officials who know the whole story about Halper. So why don’t they tell it?

Mexico launches a new round of meddling in US elections by Monica Showalter – “For all the talk about Russia meddling in our elections, the real meddler, Mexico, is at it again.”

“The Mexican government is specifically striking out at Trump voters.

Vox, which seems to like this sort of news, has the report:

Mexico has done amazing amounts of meddling in our elections, particularly the last one. It was the only nation that openly advertised to its nationals to come over to its diplomatic consulates (not places U.S. nationals are allowed to go to) and register to vote in U.S. elections, something that in California undoubtedly led to a lot of Mexican nationals voting and the resulting cancelation of Americans’ votes, meaning the disenfranchisement of American voters. That’s a foreign policy objective for them.

California, understand, does not check if voters are illegal and on its voter signature form and has slyly changed its “I certify I am a U.S. citizen” to “I certify I am a U.S. resident” to avoid prosecuting illegals for voting. Mexico knows this well.

Ten Paradoxes Of Our Age by Victor Davis Hanson – “The 21st century is reminding of us of some uncomfortable truths.”

“The Western world is in turmoil largely because of the widening gap between what the people see as true and the “truth” that their governing classes impose on them for the purported greater moral good. The result is a schizophrenia like that seen before the collapse of the Soviet Empire, in which no one believed that the reality they lived had anything to do with the reality delivered by the media and the state. Trumpism and popular movements in Europe are simply symptoms of another problem—that what the ruling elite said was true was often a lie.

Notice the “widening gap” and its relationship to intellectual integrity and cognitive dissonance. Exposing the gap and clarifying its parameters is very difficult for many to take.

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Revealing reactions, Leaking for a narrative, identity or behavior

The World As It Wasn’t by Matthew Continetti – “Barack Obama’s revealing reaction to Donald Trump’s victory” as described by Ben Rhodes.

“Obama’s words once again revealed his colossal lack of self-awareness. The passages of The World As It Is that Baker quotes in his piece reinforce the widespread impression of our forty-fourth president as an aloof, smug, vainglorious chief executive totally divorced from political reality. The shock, disgust, confusion, and horror with which Obama and his team greeted the election results exemplified the very attitudes toward democratic procedure and populist conservatism that fueled Trump’s rise. The only lesson Barack Obama drew from the election was confirmation of his own moral superiority.

Even the former president’s moments of “self-doubt” were framed as opportunities for lackeys to remind him of his greatness.

As the Wiseguys Turn: McCabe, Comey, and the FBI Boys by Michael Walsh – “what began as an investigation into Russian “collusion” on the part of the Trump campaign and perhaps the president himself, is now steadily being revealed as the sham byproduct of the fixed-fight “probe” of the Clinton email “matter” that allowed the former secretary of state to head into the 2016 election “cleared” of any wrongdoing by the Obama “justice” department.”

Prosecutorial Fanatics by James Black – “Messrs. Comey, Fitzgerald, and Mueller aren’t in the business of seeking truth and justice.”

“President Trump would be right to pardon Martha Stewart and Rod Blagojevich. They were both railroaded by overzealous prosecutors, James Comey and Patrick Fitzgerald, who along with Robert Mueller personify the prosecutorial fanaticism that cares more about high profile convictions than serving justice.

The preeminent American jurist, Robert H. Jackson, once said, “While the prosecutor at his best is one of the most beneficent forces in our society, when he acts from malice or other base motives, he is one of the worst.”

Comey, Fitzgerald, and Mueller exemplify the latter.

They rely overwhelmingly on something else about which Jackson warned: “[A] prosecutor stands a fair chance of finding at least a technical violation of some act on the part of almost anyone.” Mueller is currently testing whether that axiom extends to the president.

In a departure from standard practice, rather than investigating a supposed crime, for over a year now Mueller has been searching for one.

The double standards these three prosecutors epitomize are the product of pathological opportunism and professional expedience, or as Robert H. Jackson would put it, “base motives.”

Who leaked portions of the IG report, and why? By Thomas Lifson – “the leaks came from people anxious to minimize the impact of the report when it finally comes out, and to shape its impact in a direction favoring a narrative that is hostile toward conservative concerns.”

What to Expect from that IG Report, and When Do We Expect It? Let’s Ask Byron York at Ace of Spades HQ – “Oh, we’ve got some leaks about the upcoming report. It will not surprise you to hear that it’s Hillary partisans who appear to be doing the leaking, pushing out the story that if Comey erred, he erred in declaring she had acted with great carelessness in setting up her completely illegal, completely hackable secret server.”

Athletes Can No Longer Play Nice by Liam Warner – “The Philadelphia Eagles’ aborted White House visit shows it’s no longer possible to separate the office of the presidency from the incumbent.” i.e. for the Left, it is who you are and not what you do. This is a fundamental reason why the conversation has gone so sour.

“Thus while there may have been some on the Warriors or the Eagles who refused to accept Trump’s invitation because they thought he was bullying athletes on this particular issue, there are and have been others who declined such invitations because they hate Trump for any number of other reasons. In other words, they no longer think it possible to separate the office of the presidency from the incumbent of that office; respecting the former appears to them an approval of the latter.

In the good old days, this separation was possible.

Not anymore. People who were falling over themselves to visit Barack Obama, our last cool president, will not visit Donald Trump.

The blame for turning a harmless White House visit into a political stunt falls not on Trump but on the players and their miscalibrated moral sensitivities.

The Pruitt “scandal” watch continues: Lunchgate by Jazz Shaw – “Shark (jumping) Week continues as the media attempts to generate a new “scandal” about EPA Cheif Scott Pruitt on a near-daily basis.”

CNN’s April Ryan called out for fake news tweet by colleague by Karen Townsend – “It’s easy to understand why President Trump has found so many supporters of his fake news narrative about the mainstream media when a really blatant mistake is made due simply to the anti-Trump bias of a White House correspondent.”

The High Price of Stale Grievances by John Hinderaker – “That is the title of this essay by Columbia undergraduate Coleman Hughes. The piece is quite brilliant. More than that, Hughes must be one of America’s bravest young men.”

This is my *shocked* face: Amazon turns over policing of its charity program to SPLC by William A. Jacobson – “Relying on SPLC’s evaluation of groups reflects a corporate political culture that is hostile to conservatives.”

“As readers are aware from dozens of our prior posts, SPLC has become a primary tool to attack conservatives and stifle speech through its hate and extremist lists. Those lists are highly politicized, including in the past people such as Rand Paul, Ben Carson and Ayaan Hirsi Ali. Being designated a hate group or extremist by SPLC can spell the end of campus and other appearances. In the case of the Family Research Council, it led to violence when an SPLC follower used the list as the basis to attempt a shooting at FRC headquarters.

An August 2017 Politico Magazine article, in which I was quoted, highlighted how SPLC has become politicized, Has a Civil Rights Stalwart Lost Its Way?:

What’s all this worry about net neutrality?

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The Framer’s remedy for an exercise in gratuitous severity

A long game that’s taking too long by Paul Mirengoff – “Though McConnell is sometimes criticized by conservatives for lack of legislative successes, Senate Republicans have accomplished quite a bit under his leadership, notwithstanding the slimness of their majority.”

“There is one area, though, where McConnell has come up short — confirming nominees for key positions in the Trump administration, especially in the Department of Justice. Currently, nominees are pending for four key Assistant Attorney General position: for the Criminal Division, the Civil Division, the Civil Rights Division, and the Environmental & Natural Resources Division.

The Civil Rights Division is ground-zero for issues of major concern to conservatives, including racial preferences and quotas, voting, local police practices, religious freedom, transgender issues, and much more. In the absence of Trump’s nominee to head the division, Eric Dreiband, liberals still call the tune there to a distressing degree.

The Environmental & Natural Resources Division is a critical partner of the EPA in the rolling back of oppressive and needless regulations. Every stride Scott Pruitt’s EPA has made will be challenged in court. Unless the Justice Department is able successfully to defend these actions, Pruitt’s efforts will be for naught.

Here’s where Mitch McConnell shoulders some of the blame. The Senate is working basically part-time, often just three days a week. With so few hours of floor time available, with frequent recesses, and with Democrats insisting on 30 hours of floor debate on so many nominees, the confirmation process is moving at a snail’s pace.

Dem investigations into Scott Pruitt have officially jumped the shark (Another rant) by Jazz Shaw – “The Democrats and their media enablers have been on the warpath against EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt pretty much since the day he was nominated for the post. ” It’s why the DOJ appointments are important.

“the Left has had an especially fierce ax to grind with Scott Pruitt right from the start. It’s not tough to imagine why. He’s been one of the most staunch defenders of Trump’s agenda, making him particularly irksome to many in the media. Also, since one of the President’s top priorities was to roll back regulations, a lot of that work took place in the EPA. Pruitt is widely viewed as Trump’s hired gun who is “undermining the Obama legacy” by rolling back burdensome environmental regulations. Many of these same people are also upset that Pruitt changed EPA policy, forbidding the use of “secret science” when considering regulations and demanding transparency.

All of this has led to one media or Democratic investigation after another. You’ll recall when the press turned Pruitt’s trip to the G-7 in Italy into a scandal over how much it cost while ignoring the fact that his predecessor in the Obama administration took the exact same trip at nearly twice the price. But this latest question really takes the cake. If you want to begin looking into illegal gifts, has anyone been keeping tabs on all of the free opposition research and deceptive advertising the Washington Post, the New York Times and MSNBC have been doing for the DNC during the runup to the 2018 and 2020 elections? Those kinds of services don’t come cheap in the private sector and it’s looking more and more like an in-kind contribution to the Democrats at this point.

A Worthy Pardon for Dinesh D’Souza by Andrew C. McCarthy – “The selective, politicized prosecution of conservative author, producer, and activist Dinesh D’Souza was an exercise in gratuitous severity. President Trump’s pardon of D’Souza, announced today, is the remedy the Framers had in mind.”

“The Obama Justice Department’s extortionate tactic of turning a regulatory violation into a potential seven-year felony put enormous pressure on D’Souza to plead guilty. When he did, rather than just accept its pound of flesh, the Justice Department aggressively pushed for a prison sentence. A bravura performance at the sentencing proceeding by D’Souza’s lawyer, Ben Brafman, convinced the sentencing judge not to imprison him; but D’Souza was still confined to a halfway house for several months — a ridiculous imposition since a halfway house is supposed to be a way-station where incarcerated inmates are transferred for integration back into society. No matter what you think of D’Souza’s politics, his treatment was abusive.

President Trump’s pardon of Dinesh D’Souza is just.

Compare this to Betsy Newmark’s view: “It just looks tawdry.” … “If I were a Trump adviser, I’d have him issue a series of pardons to the usual sorts of people that normally receive presidential pardons – poor unfortunates who got a raw deal.” As McCarthy points out, that is exactly what Trump is doing. So why is Newmark so off the mark? She cites McCarthy. “So maybe D”Souza deserved a pardon. I just wish Trump would temper his Trumpiness when it comes to pardons and add to the list of reasons explaining his pardons a general sense of decency and clemency.” The implication is that her reasoning is tainted by TDS, not reality. The quality of the case succumbs to “Trumpiness” and that is sad.

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Gaslight, Propaganda, etc.

Gaslight means “manipulate (someone) by psychological means into questioning their own sanity” see Psychology Today: 11 Warning Signs of Gaslighting and compare the list to what you can see in the news every day. A problem is that when you attempt to deceive others, you often have to start with yourself.

Gaslighting Themselves: Why Trump Critics Miss the Obvious by Henry Olsen – “they have little to no sense of why people might disagree with them and why Trump’s ultimate demise is far from the smug certainty they assume it is.”

“anti-Trumpers like Kristol would be well served if they took the reasons for Trump support seriously and spent more time addressing them and less time assaulting every maladroit tweet the president sends.

If the last few years of populist movements have taught us anything, it is that the people of any democratic nation know when they are being condescended to and dismissed. When such condescension rises to the level of being perceived as a “long train of abuses and usurpations,” they will invariably “provide new guards for their future security.” Those who claim to be defending American institutions against Trump’s purported depredations ought to be the first to recognize that treating the people with respect as one’s equals is the first, and the most important, principle of American democracy. The fact that this too often seems to be overlooked is perhaps the biggest reason for his rise and his continued—and perhaps his future—success.

NY Times: Sorry for missing 80% of Trump’s rally audience by John Sexton – “God knows mistakes happen when writing stories on a deadline. You really, really don’t have to convince me that can happen. And yet, and yet…

“The accidents and errors made by reporters appear to be systemic and partisan, i.e. they arise from bias built into the media system. We know that because these errors don’t arise randomly without any consistent partisan thrust. Instead, they always occur in one direction. You never see a story like this that over-estimates Trump’s crowd size by 80%. If Davis had overestimated the crowd by as much as she under-estimated it, she’d have claimed there were 10,000 people there. In fact, that’s pretty much what Trump himself did, suggesting the crowd may have been 12,000, which is more than the venue holds.

It’s a given that Trump is a political partisan, especially about his own rallies. What’s the NY Times’ excuse?

The fact that Davis corrected the error is great, but this sort of thing wouldn’t happen if the NY Times had even a few reporters who were mildly sympathetic to the President. I’m not talking about die-hard Trump boosters, just someone who isn’t quietly part of the resistance bubble. But of course, you don’t have those people at the NY Times and so we get errors like this that always cut in one direction.

Maybe the NFL anthem protests aren’t about the anthem after all by Jazz Shaw – “Our friend Andrew Malcolm, writing at McClatchy, tackles that question this week. In particular, he looks at the fan reaction to the protests, showing up in the form of falling stadium attendance, reduced merchandise sales and sagging television ratings.” An attempt at gaslighting seems to be encountering problems.

“when millionaire football players began taking a knee in front of the Stars and Stripes as the National Anthem played and their billionaire team owners refused to do anything about it, the simmering resentment found a ready outlet. The press was quick to take the side of Kaepernick and his buddies, hurling insults that those who were offended. The fans weren’t seeing players protesting racial inequity. They saw a group of spoiled, elite, professional athletes spitting on Old Glory.

I think Andrew Malcolm is onto something here. And I think most of the media gets this equation precisely wrong. Rather than trivializing the issues that the kneeling players claim to be bringing to light, you might find a surprising number of us joining in and agreeing that there’s more to be done in terms of racial divisiveness in the country if they would just take their protest off the field and do it during a press conference or at some other venue.

The left’s defense of evil by Katie Pavlich – “Over the past few weeks, Trump derangement syndrome reached new levels after the left openly defended some of the most vicious, evil human elements around the globe in fruitless opposition to the president’s administration.”

“In the worst form of partisanship, the left has been defending evil for the sake of opposing President Trump. This strategy emboldens the wicked, including MS-13 and Hamas, while resulting in choosing wrong over right.

Enviro-Thugs Sue To Keep Natural Food Flavors Out Of Food by Josh Bloom – “EWG has teamed up with another bunch of geniuses from seven other groups (1) to sue the FDA for allowing food to be added to food. That’s not precisely true, but it’s pretty damn close.”

“The fact that a chemical is a chemical regardless of its source is misunderstood by most Americans, with the help of the organic food and supplements industries. While it may be brilliant marketing, scientifically it is an abomination. There is no difference between a chemical that is isolated from a plant and the same chemical synthesized in a lab. None.

What Earthinjustice is doing will not make a single person healthier or unhealthier. But the bank accounts of EWG, NRDC, and the others will be much healthier once the lawyers get done twisting the science.

That is all this suit is about. Power and money, science be damned.

Rudy sheds light on Trump’s legal strategy – and has some fun, too by Peter Barry Chowka – “Among the topics touched on with new clarity were the validity of the Mueller investigation itself, the disagreements about whether the FBI’s tactics in 2016 entailed spying, the perception that the Trump team is planning a major PR campaign as part of its defense, and the question of whether or not President Trump will testify under oath.”

“So, you got a group there that’s a lynching mob, so let them do their job and, boy, we’re ready to knock the heck out of you with our report, which will be authoritative. It will be backed up. It will be backed up with law and facts. And we’ll let the American people decide this.

i.e. it’s a lynch mob trying to use gaslighting techniques in order to make their case.

More Evidence Of Mueller’s Overreach by Paul Mirengoff – Earlier today, Scott put the matter this way: “The Mueller team apparently thinks that Trump can be guilty of a crime for the exercise of one of his constitutional powers (or not!).”

“Looking at the bigger picture, the notion of a prosecutor investigating a president’s personnel decisions (e.g., the firing of Comey) or interactions with cabinet members (e.g., Sessions) is troublesome. I’m not denying the possibility that a president could, in the course of making a request of officials in his government, commit a crime. If there were reason to believe Trump had requested that Sessions shoot Mueller, that would warrant investigating.

But a request that a cabinet member exercise his normal duties is light years away from that.

Mueller isn’t just nit-picking, he’s constraining the president’s exercise of his proper powers.

And it’s not just Mueller. Consider some of the judges issuing injunctions to stop the President.

Trey Gowdy Didn’t Even See Documents He Claims Exonerate FBI On Spygate: Reports By Mollie Hemingway – “Gowdy claimed that the FBI’s use of spies against the Trump campaign was perfectly proper, but multiple reports indicate he never even saw the full records Congress subpoenaed on the matter.” This is the sort of thing that creates questions as things don’t fit together.

“The actual dispute is not whether the FBI used at least one person to spy — or secretly collect information — on people in Trump’s orbit, but whether this is something routinely done against Republican candidates and should be accepted uncritically, or whether it should be fully investigated by the media, the public, government watchdogs, and elected lawmakers obligated by the Constitution to conduct oversight on the agencies to which they appropriate taxpayer funding.

Gowdy’s curious exoneration of the FBI caught many by surprise given his work on the previous HPSCI report that found widespread abuse of surveillance procedures targeting the Trump campaign.

Gowdy seemed confused or mistaken about simple facts related to the investigation.

“Right to try” somehow makes it into law by Jazz Shaw – “allowing terminally ill patients an easier path to attempt experimental drugs and treatments which were not yet approved by the government for general use. I’ve never been sure why this is controversial as long as there are guidelines for when and how doctors can determine when someone is beyond hope of recovery through conventional treatments.”

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Israel, Russia, Racism,, Propaganda, etc.

The Obama Administration’s Hypocritical Pretext for Spying on the Trump Campaign by Andrew C. McCarthy – “Where was its concern about Russia during its eight years in power?”

“Assuming the Obama administration told the FISA court that Page was a clandestine agent of Russia, I’d make two observations: First, the only publicly known allegations that Page was engaged in such clandestine activities come from the Steele dossier, and appear to be unverified.

Second, Page has never been charged with a crime, which would be odd if the FBI had been able to verify its FISA application claims — posited four times over a year of surveillance — that he was engaged in activities that appeared to be federal crimes.

while the law liberally permits criminal investigators and intelligence officers to use informants, there are situations in which spying is resisted. Among the most important are those involving our politics, particularly elections.

The question of what amounts to egregious misconduct in the context of Russia cannot be answered in a Trump vacuum. It must be informed by history.

The point, however, is that after 30 years of embracing and empowering Moscow, it is not credible — particularly for an administration that was among the worst offenders — to say, “We had to use spies and FISA surveillance against the Trump campaign due to suspicion that Trump might embrace and empower Moscow.”

the Obama administration decided to use its counterintelligence powers to spy on the Trump campaign, using at least one covert informant, electronic monitoring of communications, and other intelligence-gathering tactics. It ignored the norm against deploying such tactics against political opponents, not based on evidence of a Trump-Russia criminal conspiracy, but on speculation about the Trump campaign’s Russia contacts and Russia sympathies. Speculation by a government, an administration, and a Democratic-party nominee with their own abysmal histories of Russia contacts and Russia sympathies.

Why the ‘Racist America’ Meme is Collapsing by Pedro Gonzalez – “There is a very specific narrative being crafted by mass media and for good reason.”

“What does the media have to say about all this? More of the same. They must portray America as a nation in which minorities are perpetually victimized and incapable of being aggressors, while marginalizing dissident voices. This narrative is convenient not only to the Left but for establishment Republicans as well.

The Left fears that it might be losing control of their minority auxiliaries, without whom their narrative falls apart, and with its collapse goes their cultural hegemony. …

The media and the elites embedded in and aligned with it constitute the opposition party. The product of their agenda is an America divided along racial, ethnic, and cultural subnational lines—all in conflict against the very principles of this nation, elevating “group rights” above individual rights on the pretense of anti-racism.

For as long as we let Democrats carry out its business of polarizing the nation—a crime it has yet to be held accountable for—America will continue to be, as Arthur Schlesinger, Jr. warned, a cult of squabbling nationalities, “against the original theory of America as ‘one people,’ a common culture, a single nation.”

Congressional Republicans’ Secret Weapon by Fred Barnes – “In mid-May, senators Cory Booker (D-N.J.) and Tom Udall (D-N.M.) introduced a bill to kill the CRA. There was no fanfare or excitement, and no angry vows of resistance.” This is a matter of Congressional oversight and part of a larger struggle to inhibit such oversight as a means to get around Congress.

“Republicans have been using the Congressional Review Act (CRA) to wipe out Obama-era regulations since the Trump presidency began. And Democrats, responding groggily, have just gotten around to doing something about it.

The CRA allows Congress to look back at regulations adopted in the dying days of a president’s tenure and, if it so chooses, vote them down. In effect, this requires one party to be in control. And they better be Republicans. Democrats adore regulation.

There are limits on CRA power. The act applies only to rules and regulations put into effect in the prior 60 legislative days.

But it has significant advantages. To kill a regulation, only a simple majority is needed. So filibusters are of no use. And a CRA vote is an official act of Congress, though the regulation under review is not. Reversing a CRA vote would take congressional action. A presidential order—Obama’s favorite way to govern—wouldn’t do the job.

The clock may have expired on many egregious Obama regulations. But the CRA appears to have a long­er lifespan than the 60-day timetable might suggest. … olks at CFPB didn’t abide by the proper procedures and failed to submit the document to Congress, which is what starts the CRA consideration clock.

Elon Musk continued squabbling with the media over the weekend by John Sexton – “When I wrote about Musk’s idea last week I said I didn’t think it would work. But even if it won’t work, it’s still instructive how angry many in the media have become at Musk for suggesting they need improvement. They are reacting to his Pravda idea like vampires to garlic. What are they so worried about?”

OPCW: Call us crazy, but maybe Syria didn’t give up their chemical weapons after all by Ed Morrissey – “Here’s an explanation: you got played.” This is related to the McCarthy item cited above.

“Five years after the Nobel committee granted the OPCW its Peace prize for certifying the elimination Syria’s chemical warfare munitions, the head of the organization that bought Bashar al-Assad’s claim has had second thoughts.

Uzumcu and his organization aren’t the only ones who got played, of course. Barack Obama and John Kerry got played too, by both Assad and Vladimir Putin, after having punted the chemical-weapons issue to Russia

Rehov Removed by Scott Johnson – “Rehov’s video revealed the reality of the so-called “peaceful demonstrations” against Israel’s alleged “blockade” of Gaza. Rehov exposed the “demonstrations” as terrorist assaults on Israel staged by Hamas.” There are several of these ‘anti-Israel’ revelations on Powerline today. Scary descriptions of how the propaganda is being promulgated.

“Rehov’s videos have now been removed from YouTube and Rehov’s account shuttered “for violating YouTube’s community guidelines.” What is happening here?

The United Nations, Beyond ParodyIDF Strikes GazaAll They Are SayingThe Italian Crisis—And OursSocialism’s Victory Tour – Read and weap. Or worry. Or hope the word is getting out.

An English Teacher’s Incorrect Correction of a Trump Letter Illustrates His Critics’ Reflexive Condescension by Jacob Sullum – “Let’s argue about the president’s policies instead of his “grammar & style.” The English teacher got a few minutes of fame for the effort to contribute to a “a continuing series on what a huge doofus the president is.” Like the assertions of ‘liar’ as a character trait sans any substance, this fits the pattern: petty, vindictive, and irrelevant.

“Mason’s showy but erroneous pedantry illustrates the tendency of Trump’s opponents to cast policy disagreements as questions of competence and to delight in everything that reflects badly on him, even when that thing is not, strictly speaking, true.

Almost all of Mason’s corrections are complaints about capitalization.

“Secret Science” Regulation: A Time for Truth by cbeisner – “What would you say if a major government agency imposed regulations on the basis of “scientific studies” that couldn’t be tested because their authors wouldn’t make the data, methods, and computer codes available?”

“For decades, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has built new regulations on studies whose authors refuse to grant access to their data, computer code, and methodology. Such studies are not subject to replication by other scientists. Falsifiablility is the essence of physical science, and replication is the acid test of scientific research. But for over two decades we’ve been in an irreproducibility crisis. Over and over, published studies, even in peer-reviewed journals, have turned non-replicable.

“Secret science” has been especially common as the basis for regulation related to one of the most politicized, controversial branches of modern science, anthropogenic global warming (AGW).

At last, though, a solution may be in sight. Last month EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt requested public comment on a new rule, “Strengthening Transparency in Regulatory Science” (STRS), designed to solve that problem.

Distortions, Misdirections, and Lack of Accountability Continue to Plague Climate Science by Dr. Tim Ball – “Over the period from 1930 to 1970 a new applied mathematical technique called statistics developed and was applied to all the social sciences. This was when the conflict developed between, the ‘hard’ sciences and the application of the scientific method and techniques to other disciplines.” Some interesting tidbits of history as well as the science and the political corruption.

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Knowing and thinking and then behavior

Betty Crocker: Pro-GMO And Proud Of It by Alex Berezow – “There’s a lot of money to be made in kowtowing to the latest dietary fads and unsubstantiated health scares.” … “May Betty Crocker live long and prosper. And may companies like Panera Bread learn that honesty is a far better marketing strategy than deceitful fearmongering.” The stimulus was to a Twitter Troll. A comparison and contrast is illustrated.

“Consider Panera Bread … they boasted that their food didn’t contain artificial preservatives, apparently unaware that food waste — something that preservatives help prevent — is a gigantic problem that needs to be solved*.

Or consider all the money that can be made by accusing and suing food companies over perfectly safe products. An entire industry has been built around California’s Proposition 65, a gold mine for unethical activists and lawyers. The latest travesty forces manufacturers to place cancer warning labels on coffee.

Given the thoroughly unscientific and litigious milieu in which we live, companies find themselves scrambling to appease the uneducated Twitter mob and apologizing for being in business. That’s why it’s such a breath of fresh air when a company stands up to the hysteria.

The Disease-Mongering Of The American Diet by Edward Archer – “Only 100 years ago, eating and drinking were still major causes of death.”

“Unclean food, milk, and water killed millions of people through food-borne diseases such as typhoid, diphtheria, cholera and scarlet fever. By the 1930s, untold millions suffered and died from malnutrition and nutritional diseases such as pellagra, beriberi, scurvy, rickets, and goiter.

But that was then…

In the 21st century, animals rarely eat humans and the American food supply is safer and more nutritious than at any point in history. These are well-established facts — in the U.S. almost no one has nutritional deficiencies, and in 2012, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) determined that 8 out of 10 Americans were not even at risk for deficiencies. Despite this, millions of Americans still fear the safety of their food. Why?

These government reports were significant because it demonstrated that both politicians and researchers were willing to ignore rigorous evidence to the contrary and indirectly regulate the U.S. food industry by picking “winners” and “losers” (i.e., allegedly “healthy” and “unhealthy” foods, respectively).

Butchers ‘living in fear’ as vegan attacks on the rise, says Countryside Alliance by Helena Horton – “international groups coordinate attacks which take place in the UK, explaining: “”Social media has been a catlalyst for much of this campaigning, both in terms of bringing together international groups and if they find the right independent business it does bring a lot of pressure on family businesses and farmers.”

Trump says Mueller probe has ‘destroyed’ people’s lives by Mark Moore – “They journeyed down to Washington, D.C., with stars in their eyes and wanting to help our nation … They went back home in tatters!”

Real Conservatives Refuse To Kneel Before Their Liberal Overlords by Kurt Schlichter – “The liberals were likewise beside themselves at the results of our push back, prompting them to go into one of their trademark sessions of coordinated but inept gaslighting.” The NFL players got him started on quite a rant.

“This kneeling thing was mindless performance art designed by these leftist jerks, and enabled by the liberal elite and its slobbering media lapdogs, to insult us to our faces by committing an act of calculated disrespect to our country and to the Normal Americans who built it, feed it, and protect it.

It was a scam and a lie from the word “hike.” This dimwitted protest was always directed at us, and no one else. If it wasn’t us, who was it? The America-loathing elite that was cheering them on?

Let’s get real. They wanted to rub our faces in their contempt, to laugh at us as we had to endure it, humiliated by our own powerlessness. We were supposed to just sit there and take it. We are never supposed to use our own power to fight back.

Here’s how we roll. When the enemy deploys its power against us, whether it’s some football jerk dissing us via Old Glory or some tech titan deciding to not allow us access to social media, we will fight back using whatever power we have. We’ll bankrupt the NFL before we just sit there watching them flip us off. And we’ll leverage our political power to regulate the Twittfacegrams into submission if they keep trying to exclude us from participation in our own culture. There is no conservative principle that requires you to not use your most effective weapon in your own self-defense. None.

Backfire: Publix retreat means less cash for anti-NRA Democrats By Valerie Richardson – “Grocery chain suspends donations under pressure from Parkland activist.” Bullies, again, invite response.

“While Publix tilts decidedly right in its political giving, the supermarket giant has also donated more than $760,000 since 2008 to Democratic committees, including at least two dozen candidates for federal office at odds with the NRA.

Publix suspended its political giving Friday after Mr. Hogg and other activists launched a boycott and announced “die-ins” at two stores over reports that the company had donated $670,000 in three years to GOP gubernatorial hopeful Adam Putnam, a staunch NRA supporter.

Minutes before the Friday protests began, Publix issued a statement saying that the company “did not intend to put our associates and the customers they serve in the middle of a political debate.”

Loose Canons. Obama’s Guilty Contentment by Jed Babbin – “He and his administration remain an ongoing scandal, no matter how much he brags about being Mr. Clean.”

“Obama’s eight years in office, from January 2009 to January 2017, was a period of time in which democracy-threatening scandals were overlooked by a comprehensively politicized Justice Department and the media which served, in the words of former Obama deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes, as an “echo chamber” for the administration’s spin.

The scandalous conduct of Obama and his team, from Obama himself to Hillary Clinton to Lois Lerner, always had the purpose of serving Obama’s agenda and was often illegal or unconstitutional or — as occurred during and after the 2016 election — a combination of the two that constituted the greatest threat to our democratic system of government since the Civil War.

In a speech last week, Hillary Clinton said “Right now we are living through a crisis in our democracy. There are certainly not tanks in the street but what is happening today goes to the heart of who we are as a nation. I say this not as a Democrat who lost an election, but an American afraid of losing a country.” She should know. Obama created that crisis with her willing and eager participation.

Trump-Russia, the bank shot investigation by Byron York – finding a crime instead of investigating one means that innuendo, association, and propaganda campaigns are the tools, not evidence and reason nor justice.

“Put it all together, and the impression left by the public parts of the Mueller probe is that Mueller has spent more than a year circling around the basic question of his investigation — Was there collusion? — but not answering it. He has liberally employed the prosecutor’s technique of using unrelated charges to pressure targets in hopes of getting damning information on the real issue.

So now prosecutors, and the press, are looking farther and farther afield — to the taxi king and beyond — in hopes of uncovering the collusion conspiracy they believe exists but so far can’t find.

Spy Name Games by Andrew C. McCarthy – “Our contretemps over the nomenclature of government informants has me unable to shake this arresting moment from my memory.”

“The Obama administration blatantly politicized the government’s intelligence and law-enforcement apparatus. Their Chicken Little shrieks that public disclosure of FISA warrants and texts between FBI agents would imperil security have proven overblown at best (and, in some instances, to be cynical attempts to hide embarrassing facts). “Trust us” is not cutting it anymore.

In the end, it is not about who the spies are. It is about why they were spying. In our democratic republic, there is an important norm against an incumbent administration’s use of government’s enormous intelligence-gathering capabilities to — if we may borrow a phrase — interfere in an election. To justify disregarding that norm would require strong evidence of egregious wrongdoing. Enough bobbing and weaving, and enough dueling tweets. Let’s see the evidence.

Most programmers think like folks in humanities, not natural scientists by Luboš Motl – “Coders as a community ceased to be STEM people.”

“And this dismissive attitude towards mathematics and “theory” in general may be enough to do some things in humanities – and, as I have argued, in most of the coding, too. The only problem is that our civilization stands on lots of other things, the actual beef of the modern technology, where this “sufficiency of language-like conventions plus common sense” simply doesn’t work. There is a huge amount of vital “theory” – mathematical identities, laws of physics, and stuff like that – that someone simply has to know (and some kids have to learn it) for our civilization to be even maintained – and surely for it to keep on advancing.

Mathematics classes don’t teach just something. They teach something important

Schools shouldn’t be growing spoiled brats. … Self-confidence of the people who don’t really know much is harmful or dangerous for the whole civilization. A kid should learn that there’s way more wisdom in the world than he or she will ever learn. The kid should be actively persuaded that this is the case. When the kid is actively persuaded about this important truth, it becomes more humble and respectful towards the mathematics, science, and wisdom that the mankind has accumulated, and that’s exactly what should happen!

In the good old times, this kind of humility was widespread and many things were OK because of that … Humility and respect for the actual knowledge and achievements of the mankind have been declared politically incorrect. The only thing that the people are demanded to be humble towards is the politically correct group think itself. It’s a lethal combination.

Trolls: leftist fantasies of rightist bigotry by neo-neocon – “There are various ways to tell that a troll is a troll, but I’m not going to reveal them here. Trade secrets. What interests me about the Pretender type of troll is what the phenomenon reveals about the leftist mind.”

“Since the actual person behind the troll character is almost certainly on the left, however (or at least some group opposed to the right), that person can only create a caricature of a commenter on the right, one that sounds plausible to the troll but actually isn’t believable at all. Because, funny thing, the stereotypes that a person on the left generates (or swallows) about those on the right are just that, stereotypes and caricatures.

The Pretenders’ comments are a leftist fantasy of what people on the right think, but that fantasy is something emanating from the mind of leftists. Food for thought.

There’s more than knowledge. There is how to think.

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Educating the public with reality.

The Great Unmasking by Clarice Feldman — “I’m not talking about the unmasking of persons caught up in the Obama administration’s illegal surveillance of everyone connected with Trump and his campaign.  For that, there’s been more than sufficient evidence.  If you need more while we wait for the OIG reports, here are some excellent summaries …”

“I’m talking about a different series of unmaskings: Heroes and Knaves, Allies and Foes, Pundits and Nincompoops, Friends and Enemies of Israel, all unmasked by the genius of President Trump.
 … 
It’s appropriate this Memorial Day weekend to salute the retiring NSA director, Admiral Mike Rogers, for courageously standing up against the Obama Administration and the intelligence apparatus, risking all to blow the whistle on the illegal sharing of FISA information on the part of those working to aid Hillary and defeat Trump.  A full timeline of his actions is detailed here
 … 
Our closest “ally,” the U.K., colluded with the Obama administration to spy on Trump and his campaign.
 … 
A real ally in this fight is not the German-dominated E.U., but Saudi Arabia.
 … 
My friend Don Surber, the Sage of West Virginia, poked fun – as we all should – at those nincompoops who have posed for years as foreign policy experts
 … 
In the benighted corridors of J Street, most reform synagogues, the Upper West Side of Manhattan, and such enclaves of comfortable left-wing Jews, Obama and his party remain friends of the Jewish state, substantial evidence to the contrary notwithstanding. 
 … 
I would be remiss if I left out of the unmaskings list those conservatives for whom Trump can do no right.  Had you asked Bill Kristol or Mona Charen, David Frum, or Jennifer Rubin, for example, to make a wish list of what they hoped a Republican president would accomplish, there’s no doubt in my mind that what he has already achieved would far exceed that list. 
 … 
As for blacks, while the Democratic Congressional Black Caucus, in lockstep with the “conservative” #NeverTrumps, see nothing but consistent Trump failures, Louis Farrakhan’s tweet this week must have set their jaws dropping:

Yes, indeed, “The stars seem to all be in a strange new alignment.”

 

 

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Scandal Free? Really. Separating fact from Fiction

‘Scandal-free’ Obama is daring Trump to bust corrupt members of his administration by Monica Showalter – “Mouthing an old trope dating from his time in office and ever since, former President Obama declared at a Vegas conference that he had a scandal-free administration, quite unlike President Trump.”

“he made that mendacious claim just as he was being paid big dollars at the Las Vegas conference itself, which as most Americans know, is typically a disguised bribe for some favors performed earlier, and in itself a scandal. His fees are reportedly $400,000, which is nice money for a few minutes of speaking work.

It was rife with crony business deals, described here. There were major policy scandals, such as the subordination of embassy security abroad to the need to shill a ‘narrative’ about al-Qaida being on the run in time for elections, as happened in Benghazi. There was the monstrous Solyndra green energy scandal where business cronies left taxpayers on the hook for hundreds of millions of dollars and made out like bandits themselves. There was the gunrunning scandal of Fast and Furious which allowed guns to move into the hands of Mexican cartels, leading to the death of a U.S. border agent. Nobody was punished, of course. There was the scandal of the emails at the Environmental Protection Agency, where officials illegally used pseudonyms to evade Freedom of Information Act laws and got away with it. There was Hillary Clinton’s illegal private server set up to evade laws the same way and created a vast opening for foreign hackers and espionage of top secrets, with Obama willingly participating in it the communications. There was the IRS targeting of political dissidents and the lies to cover it up, again, completely unpunished. There were the ‘lost’ emails – of the FBI, of the IRS, and Hillary Clinton herself while she was at the Department of State. There were the smashing of Blackberries with hammers, again, to evade transparency laws and lawmen, too. There was Clinton’s pay-to-play foundation-State Department nexus, corruption of the highest variety, and an investigation squelched due to Obama’s politicization of the FBI. There was Obama’s politicization of intelligence reports to say what he wanted on the war front, as well as his weaponization of the intelligence agencies to spy on political opponents and reporters. It turns out some of his people did go to jail, or were headed there for leaks – and he pardoned them to keep them out. Such as his “favorite” general here.

But according to Obama, the fact that no one was ever punished is the actual justification for his claim that he never had scandals. The fact that no one was ever punished is perhaps the biggest scandal of his administration.

Obama claims he had no scandals because he allowed any consequences, no matter what anyone ever did, no matter what laws they broke, which is not an argument to claim he had no scandals.

With the stream of lies about a scandal-free administration, the path is now clear that it’s time to clean house on the continuous lawbreaking of Obama officials that hasn’t been punished a whit. It’s time to create consequences for those who thumb their nose at the law, justified only by a compliant press and their own leftwingery. Obama just gave President Trump the green light.

Not so fast Obama, your biggest scandal is unfolding before our eyes by Larry O’Connor – “The notion is obviously absurd on the face of it, for anyone who paid unbiased attention over the eight years of his presidency.”

“The fact that these troubling episodes have not risen (in some people’s minds) to the level of the multiple “Generic-Gate” scandals that crippled presidencies of the past is less a testament to Obama’s ethics than it is commentary on the two institutions charged with monitoring and exposing these dramas.

From everything we are learning (and we have just begun to scratch the surface) one of the most disturbing aspects of Spygate is that, it appears, at no time did anyone in any position of authority in the DOJ, the FBI, the White House or the intelligence community raise an objection or even a concern over the actions they were taking. This tells you just how programmed these stalwart institutions had been in their blind allegiance to the political goals of President Obama and the Democratic Party.

Of all of the scandals, abuses of power and miscarriages of justice seen during the eight years of Obama’s lackluster (and shockingly unmemorable) presidency, the biggest and most outrageous one is still in its infancy. Let’s let Spygate play itself out before we start polishing up the marble for President Obama’s monument.

Jarrett and Obama are Behind Spygate by Daniel John Sobieski – “Unless we assume the FBI went completely rogue, it is inconceivable that the deployments of personnel to spy on the Trump campaign and make provocative contact with its lesser members could have occurred without the full knowledge and control of the occupants of the Oval Office.”

Ace of Spades notes that FBI spending $70 on a conference table was withheld from Congress because they thought it was a “national security” concern. Then there’s the John McCain mea culpa on the Iraq war – “Ah, #MuhPrinciples. How they doth mutate and transform.” The problem is a good idea corrupted by bad politics that drove it into being something it was not supposed to be as illustrated by the corruption now being used by the corruptors for personal leverage. Vietnam was like this, too.

Five Ways to Know if You Can Talk to Someone about Climate by Charlie Martin – “Since we first covered the Climategate Files here at PJ Media in 2009, the controversy has continued, but with some interesting changes.”

“Of course, the more the climate dogma is disputed, the more the climate change cultists resist. On the other hand, we’ve seen a lot more people coming out as thinking maybe, just maybe, there are some points of responsible dispute in the argument about climate change.

On the other hand, there are a lot of dogmatists who simply can’t be productively argued with

He dips his toe into the ‘both sides do it (sans evidence)’ thing but then goes on to list five specific questions that can discriminate between the sides. The apologia for PC is contradicted by the case he makes.

A Reminder: Why the US Rail System Is At Least as Good As the European System if You Care About Energy Use at Coyote Blog – “I know that the supposedly pro-science global warming alarmists sometimes are not actually very focused on science, but this is pretty simple to think about.”

“Most of the intellectual elites and nearly all the global warming alarmists deride the US for not having the supposedly superior rail system that France and Germany have. They are blinded by the vision of admittedly beautiful high speed trains, and have frittered away billions of dollars trying to pursue various high speed rail visions in the US.

Jordan Peterson and the left-wing smear machine by John Sexton – “Horton says the social pressure was so intense that she felt scared to speak up with her opinion. She believes that pressure to conform to a narrow, approved view is a much bigger problem for the left.” Peterson is a Canadian psychologist who dared to talk about actual reality and, hence, has become a poster boy for Leftist bullying.

“The hyperbolic uniformity of the leftist attack on Peterson is emblematic of the growing tendency to reduce left-of-center thought to the status of a rigidly simplistic ideology. Increasingly, what passes for progressive political thought today offers little more than a scripted set of weaponized hashtags (you must be pro- #metoo and anti-patriarchy, no further thought required). This narrowing of our public discourse is disturbing, and worrisome on multiple, mutually reinforcing levels…

“The Left’s attack on Peterson is so unrelenting, so superficial, and quite frequently so vicious, that many of us who work and/or live in left-leaning social environments feel scared to speak up against it…

“I realize that Peterson has at times said things that I disagree with and might even find offensive. But I’m much more concerned with—and disgusted by—the endless stream of tendentious and dishonest articles from leftists critics that grab onto such statements and blow them out of proportion, while aggressively erasing everything else the man has ever said or done from the record.

Carol Horton is correct. The left isn’t listening to Jordan Peterson, they’re just trying to destroy him as efficiently and quickly as possible. That dynamic says a lot about the left, none of it very good. Kudos to Horton for having the courage to stand up to the mob.

The Left And The Right Aren’t Hearing The Same Jordan Peterson by David Marcus – “A New York Times Magazine hit piece says more about the mainstream media than it says about Jordan Peterson.”

“In fact, much of Peterson’s insistence that we listen to, and understand, our ancient myths, legends, and stories is not because they tell us how we should be, but because they tell us how we have been. These old narratives give us insight into what our ancestors thought about being human, where humanity had been, where humanity wanted to go. This is an essential tool for understanding western thought and ideas — assuming we still wish to be human.

The DOJ’s defiance of Congress by neo-neocon – “Kimberly Strassel in the WSJ on the real constitutional crisis that’s going on

“the Democrats and the press (redundant, I know) would have us believe that it’s Congress and the right who are out of line for questioning or doubting the DOJ and its veracity and fine intentions, despite all the reasons there are to doubt that veracity and those fine intentions (and as though the left itself doesn’t doubt that veracity and those fine intentions when it suits the left’s purposes).

none of this investigation of the excesses of the DOJ re the Trump campaign would be going on if the GOP didn’t control Congress. This fact should be driven home by every GOP participant in the Congressional campaign for 2018, because I believe most people don’t connect those dots and realize what the effect of a Democrat-controlled Congress would be (and by “most people” I include a lot of people who call themselves conservatives and are angry at what they call the GOPe).

As Strassel wrote, “congressional Republicans worry about losing their oversight authority in the midterms,” and well they should. In fact, we should all worry about it.

Two different worlds: If you look at the MSM, you’d think Trump was doing very very poorly by neo-neocon – “And that has been true for his entire presidency. … So take a look at a sampler for today at memeorandum.”

“Nothing unusual about today; it’s very typical. Trump doing badly vis a vis North Korea. Trump “venting anger” at this and that (often, it’s Trump “raging” and/or “out of control”). “Concerned by Trump, some Republicans Quietly Align With Democrats” (although funny thing, what I’ve seen most of the time is a few concerned Democrats quietly aligning with Republicans). Sad tales of separated “immigrant families” (i.e. illegal immigrants). Focus on a weirdo 9-11-truther GOP candidate for Congress in a district in Illinois in which the Republican primary was uncontested and the Democrat is virtually certain to win anyway. Hit piece du jour on Jordan Peterson. Seahawk wide receiver saying “Trump is an idiot, plain and simple.” Featured op-ed in the WaPo entitled, “Are Republicans abetting a demagogue—or something worse?” And perhaps my personal favorite: “The Chilling Effect of Trump’s War on the FBI.”

Trump Moves the Narrative Football by Andrew Klavan – “I see no free speech violation, even in spirit, in the NFL’s ruling that players should not disrespect the flag during the National Anthem. The players were taking that action on company time, in company uniform, while doing the company’s business, representing the company and, clearly, hurting the company’s bottom line.”

“The NFL anthem controversy is a prime example of how Donald Trump is doing something of yuge importance that conservatives never think to do, and that intellectual conservatives don’t even seem to understand needs doing. He is challenging — and often changing — the left’s narrative.

The narrative is essentially a set of assumptions so pervasive that people are afraid to oppose them. They think they are alone in disagreeing with those assumptions and they fear they will be deemed immoral by the majority. For a long time, the left has controlled this narrative by dominating and censoring the means of communication: social media, the news networks, Hollywood and the academies.

Trump makes it easier to fire deficient govt workers… finally by Jazz Shaw – “The latest executive order news coming out of the White House addresses some long overdue questions about government workers and their unions.”

“Some of the biggest (and best) changes address policies which we’ve been carping about here for years. The first one shortens the period of Performance Improvement Plans (where the misbehaving or underperforming worker is given time to straighten up and fly right) to 30 days across all agencies. Under the old system, these PIPs could last up to half a year.

The next change really hits the motherload, though. Trump is clamping down on so-called “official time” where employees who are union officials can spend unlimited time doing union work while they are on the clock, sometimes doing zero work for the public. They also get to use offices and other government equipment for union work at no cost. Trump is clamping down on that, ordering that no union officials spend more than 25% of their work hours on union business and ordering a new agreement where the unions can use their own facilities or pay rent for using government offices. These changes are long, long overdue.

Separating fact from fiction in the FIRST STEP Act before Congress by Taylor Millard – “The House of Representatives is signing off on a bill which appears to be a good measure in the push for justice reform on the federal level.” Another bit of ‘hidden’ news that is also plagued by dishonest claims. Millard explains.

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Helping the public understand

It’s about describing things in a way that the public can understand them. It’s made particularly difficult by the efforts of the news sources much of the public depends upon obfuscating, distorting, and ignoring events.

Bombshell: More Obama admin spies attempted to insert selves into Trump campaign by Thomas Lifson – “The eye-opening disclosure came at the end of a highly informative discussion with Cater Page about his interactions with Stefan Halper, the informant already believed to have pumped members of the campaign for information.”

“Up until the revelations of spies (or “informants” as the New York Times and other anti-Trumpers call them) worming their way into the Trump campaign, it was fiendishly complex explaining to members of the general public what went on. But everyone understands the words spy, secret agent, and informant.

The revelation that the Obama administration security apparatus was spying on the Trump campaign is easy to understand and outrageous on its face.

It Depends on What Your Definition of ‘Spy’ Is by Eric Felten – “So that no one misses the message, it’s right there in the headline: “F.B.I. Used Informant to Investigate Russia Ties to Campaign, Not to Spy, as Trump Claims.

“Is this an outrage, as the president has tweeted? If the spying—yes, I said it, because that’s what it was, in any normal use of the word—turned up a conspiracy between Team Trump and the Kremlin, the enormity of the president’s offense will make any question of how the evidence was collected fade away. But if no such conspiracy is uncovered, efforts to spy on the campaign will appear to be a gross abuse of the FBI’s investigative powers.

Could it be that the insistence that a spy not be called a spy is born of a concern that there might not be proof to be had of the sort of conspiracy that would make Americans accept the spying as justified?

When did Trump-Russia probe begin? Investigators focus on mystery months by Byron York – “Revelations that an FBI informant insinuated himself into the Trump campaign have led some congressional investigators to rethink their theories on how and why former President Barack Obama’s Justice Department began investigating the 2016 Trump presidential effort.”

A few weeks before the opening of the investigation — those are the words that have raised eyebrows among Hill investigators. If it was before the investigation, then what was an FBI informant doing gathering undercover information when there was not yet an investigation?

The question has pointed investigators back to the issue of when the probe began — not when a piece of paper was formally signed but when the FBI, and perhaps other U.S. intelligence agencies, began investigating the Trump campaign.

Investor’s Business Daily, As Evidence Piles Up, The Media Ignore The ‘Other’ Trump-Russia Scandal – “There have been two major ongoing investigations involving President Trump. One is looking into whether Trump colluded with Russia. It’s borne no fruit. The other involves abuse of power at the highest levels of government to hurt Trump and is producing damning evidence by the bushel. Guess which one the press is ignoring?”

“A good reporter, or at least one who isn’t hopelessly biased, would be able to see that the real story isn’t the go-nowhere Mueller investigation, but the more troubling story of abuse of power by Obama administration officials to protect Hillary Clinton and then derail the Trump presidency.

Concealed FISA Docs May Hold Key to Trump Surveillance by Sara Carter – “President Trump meets with FBI, DOJ and DNI

“this meeting is crucial because it will be a major opportunity for the President to order the Justice Department and FBI to turn over classified information requested by the House Intelligence Committee that may finally lead to the answers related to the scope of the FBI’s surveillance on the Trump campaign. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, FBI Director Christopher Wray and Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats will be at the White House to discuss the classified nature of the request by the committee and they will argue against the disclosure of the documents.

So what can Trump do to ensure a proper review of these documents and what could be one of the biggest scandals in modern American politics?

Over the past week, a mountain of leaks regarding classified information regarding the FBI’s operation into the Trump campaign have been shared with The Washington Post and The New York Times. Many lawmakers and sources closely connected to the FBI and DOJ this reporter has spoken with believe the leaks came from the DOJ and Bureau in an effort to stay ahead of the story and frame the narrative.

The former senior U.S. intelligence official, who worked as a clandestine officer, told this reporter that it is imperative an investigation be conducted into the Bureau and Obama Department of Justice.

“It appears the FBI created the probable cause to trigger an investigation,” he said. “I would have never believed in my life that this would occur in America. We never in our history have had armed representatives of the state involved in usurping the wishes and the actions of the public at large to unseat a duly elected president. You can’t overstate the importance of this because they have weaponized the national security tools that are designed to protect the US from external enemies and weaponized it to go after a campaign and sitting president.”

Ace of Spades: Derek Hunter: I Used to be Skeptical of the Existence of a “Deep State.” I’m All Out of Skepticism Now. – Extraordinary claims require extraodinary proofs. – We now have extraordinary proofs. Follow the links! … Former Clinton Pollster Mark Penn: To Save the Republic, Robert Mueller and the Deep State Must be Stopped and DefeatedA sensible opinion, coming from a completely unexpected speaker. And yet more links to relevant material.

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The Choom Gang losing its covers

What Obama and his political Choom Gang did is far worse than Watergate By Charles Hurt – “If this was orchestrated without the express knowledge of Mr. Obama, then it reveals just how blatantly he instructed by example the weaponizing of the entire federal government to carry out his low, dishonest and unjust ideology.”

“If this conspiracy was carried out at the express direction of Mr. Obama or other high officials in his administration, then they belong in jail. From unmasking of political opponents, to leaking their names to the press, to killing legitimate investigations, to launching politically motivated witch hunts, a racket of this scale could not have been carried out without some major juice and cover at the top levels of the Department of Justice, FBI and the White House.

The rogue henchmen carrying out the dirty work, as always, presented as perfect, decent and most honest little Boy Scouts like former FBI Director James B. Comey.

What the Obama administration did to infiltrate the Trump campaign, spy on political opponents and then launch a wicked vendetta against them is worse than anything J. Edgar Hoover ever did — at least that we know about.

It is worse than any of the domestic abuses by the CIA during the Cold War.

It is worse even than what the federal government did to undermine civil rights activists like Martin Luther King Jr.

As bad and corrupt as it is to harass innocent citizens under any circumstances, it is so much worse to weaponize the government to pursue and punish and eliminate domestic political opponents. That is the sort of thing that destroys a Republic.

Does the Justice Department have to tell Congress what Mueller is doing? by Byron York – “Special counsel Robert Mueller’s recent admission that the May 17, 2017, Justice Department order defining the scope of his investigation was just for show, and that the real extent of his probe is a secret, is reverberating on Capitol Hill.”

“Now Grassley argues that the Senate has a right to see the memo, too. “This committee likewise should be permitted to review the true nature and scope of the special counsel’s investigation,” Grassley wrote to Rosenstein. “It is unclear precisely how, or whether, the Department is following its own regulations, what the actual bounds of Mr. Mueller’s authority are, and how those bounds have been established.”

In the letter, Grassley appeared unhappy that he, as the chairman of the Senate committee charged with overseeing the Justice Department, did not learn the true extent of the Mueller investigation until long after Mueller was appointed.

Grassley also noted that the Justice Department’s secrecy with the Mueller appointment comes after months in which the department withheld a variety of other documents related to the Trump-Russia affair.

Devin Nunes describes DOJ leak trap that he and Trey Gowdy avoided by Thomas Lifson – “Devin Nunes fully understands the depths to which the cover-up forces within the Department of Justice will stoop to protect their misdeeds from exposure.”

“he described a leak trap that was attempted against him and fellow House committee chairman Trey Gowdy. As he explains below, in the past they have gone to meetings at the DOJ but denied the documents they sought, only to have leaks follow. They were invited to another meeting at the DOJ on Friday, which they figured out was a ruse intended to be used to afterward blame them for leaks. When they found out that no documents would be produced, they declined.

The entire scandal of spying on the Trump campaign through abuse of the surveillance capabilities of the intelligence apparatus is shot through with set-ups: luring young George Papadopoulos to London, setting him up with information and then getting him to blab it to the Australian ambassador to London, briefing President Trump on the Steele Dossier and then leaking it to the media so as to provide an excuse for their coverage, and many, many other incidents. Nunes and Gowdy are smart enough to spot the pattern and decline to be patsies.

H.A.L.P.E.R. Spells Game Up for Obama’s Spies by Clarice Feldman – “The New York Times and Washington Post, the Democrats’ semi-official newspapers this week megaphoned the instigators, offering up their justifications without naming his name.”

“the name is Stefan Halper, who, as I wrote here last week, was paid a substantial sum by the Department of Defense’s Office of Net Assessment.

If it was for this work – and it suspiciously looks like it because the payments were made in July and September of 2016 when he was weaseling his way into the campaign – then we know we have the DNI, CIA, DOJ, FBI, Dept. of State and the Defense Department working for Hillary’s election and to smear and create a basis for further spying on Trump and his campaign.

The NYT and Washington Post stories were clearly dictated by the perpetrators of this unprecedented effort to interfere with our elections. A careful reading shows that they leaked just enough about Halper to positively identify him while the press refuses to name him because the selective leakers warned, “that exposing him could endanger him or his contacts.”

Wretchard tweets something impossible to deny: “The biggest problem with politically weaponizing intelligence agencies is it CREATES a pathway for the foreign takeover of the system. If once a hostile power takes over the WH, it obtains the power to remain indefinitely.”

We now have an imaginary crime – collusion – with imaginary evidence and even imaginary defendants. What is not imaginary is the selfish effort to destroy our polity by several handfuls of men and women who abused their positions of trust for intended partisan gain that failed. Give them the hook already.

The Hunter Becomes the Hunted by Richard Fernandez – “The Russian collusion affair, which began with the incoming president on the defensive, has now become a set of simultaneous offensives with each side trying to jail the other.”

“The invaluable timeline of the investigations compiled by Sharyl Attkisson seems to confirm what Lee Smith of Tablet Magazine has already suggested: that the roots of domestic spying predated the Trump candidacy. He notes that “Obama officials vastly expand[ed] their searches through NSA database for Americans and the content of their communications. In 2013, there were 9,600 searches involving 195 Americans. But in 2016, there are 30,355 searches of 5,288 Americans.”

Avoiding a crisis depends on not crossing certain lines and concealing that fact if it has occurred. That has now gone by the board. When a system is undeniably confronted with deceitful lawlessness it is like finding the dealer was cheating at cards. Trump, by officially demanding an answer into whether the previous administration engaged in political spying, is effectively accusing them of cheating at cards. As everybody knows, once you ask this question at a table, the surface game stops and a deeper game begins. Suddenly the little cardboard rectangles don’t matter anymore.

Watergate II: Collusiongate by neo-neocon – “Unlike Watergate, the current crisis in government/spying/politics doesn’t have a memorable name. But for those of us who lived through Watergate it has a certain resonance with that event as well as major differences, imparting a strange sense of familiarity, dislocation, and increasing alarm.”

The Latest Whopper — The FBI Was Actually Trying to ‘Protect Trump’ by Brian C. Joondeph – “It’s now to the point that Mueller’s team is investigating anyone in Trump’s circle who ever ate a bowl of borscht or drank a sip of Russian vodka.”

“A few days ago, the WaPo published an opinion piece entitled, “The FBI didn’t use an informant to go after Trump. They used one to protect him.”

Sure, they did. I can’t wait to read from the WaPo how Iran wants nukes to “protect” Israel or that that sanctuary cities are for the “protection” of legal, law-abiding residents of those cities.

They are “protecting” Trump by indicting his associates, squeezing them to rat out Trump, leaking to the media, withholding exculpatory evidence, and so on.

See what a tangled web the deep state is weaving? They have handed Trump the keys to the kingdom, providing precedent and justification to do to his next opponent what was done to him and his campaign. And future presidential campaigns as well. The Banana States of America.

All because of Obama and his administration’s tangled web and “practice to deceive.”

Dirt on Hillary by J. Marsolo – “The problem is not getting dirt on Hillary. We have the dirt on Hillary. There is so much dirt it is mindboggling for anyone who cares, which excludes Democrats and the Media.”

Mueller Year One: Journalism’s Real Heroes Continued by Julie Kelly – “A brave group of journalists—aided by key amplifiers in social media, cable news, and talk radio—continues to push back on the media’s sycophantic service to the Democratic Party in which so many reporters, news personalities and political pundits are invested.”

“Now, reporters who tried to convince us Trump was nuts for claiming Obama’s FBI spied on him are spinning hard to persuade us that an “informant” isn’t really a “spy.” But these antidotal journalists and influencers are not letting them get away with it.

Why the left buys into every anti-Israel smear by Gil Troy – “Reporters love playing the “peaceful, oppressed protesters-of-color” against “the armed, white, persecuting soldiers”

“It’s striking how easy it is to discover the truth — or at least see some complexity behind these stereotypes. You need not be a pro-Israel fanatic to assume the story must be more complicated — just as you can be a pro-Palestinian critic of Israel without caricaturing Israelis as Nazis or Ku Klux Klanners.

When people so willingly engage in self-deception, something deeper is taking place.

How Democracies End: A Bureaucratic Whimper by Victor Davis Hanson – “there has certainly been nothing yet in this administration comparable to the Obama-era efforts to curb civil liberties.”

“One strange trait of the die hard NeverTrump Republicans and progressives is their charge that Donald Trump poses an existential threat to democracy. Trump, as is his wont, says a lot of outrageous and weird things. But it is hard in his 16 months of rule to find any proof that Trump has subverted the rule of law.

While we understand those on the left refuse to believe that a constitutional “legal scholar” like Obama would even think of allowing the executive branch to go rogue, it is indeed strange that in almost every NeverTrump attack on Trump’s conduct, there is almost no recognition or indeed worry that we have been living through one of the great challenges to constitutional government in our history.

But stranger still is what we already know of the 2016 election, and the lack of outrage from constitutionalists, who daily warn us of what Trump might do—when we already know what the U.S. government has done in violation of civil rights, constitutional principles, and likely federal laws.

the threat to our civil liberties is coming from supposedly sanctimonious and allegedly judicious career FBI, Justice Department, and intelligence agency officials, progressive and self-described idealistic former members of the Obama national security team, and anti-Trump fervent campaign operatives, all of whom felt that they could break the law—including but not limited to illegally monitoring American citizens, and seeking to warp federal courts and even the presidential election because such unsavory and anti-constitutional means were felt necessary and justified to prevent and then subvert the presidency of Donald J. Trump.

It is willful blindness for progressives and NeverTrump Republicans to overlook what has happened only to damn what has not happened.

This is the way democracies end—not with a loud boisterous bang, but with insidious and self-righteous whimpers.

Nunes approaches the target (2) by Scott Johnson – “As Nunes has persisted, anonymous authorities resisting his demand commenced a leak campaign

“The leak campaign of the anonymous authorities who took to the Times and the Post for the stories that surfaced late Friday was intended in part falsely to defame Nunes. Rep. Nunes appeared yesterday morning on Sunday Morning Futures with Maria Bartiromo to discuss it. Questioned by Bartiromo, Rep. Nunes spoke of his demand for the documents in issue and the resulting flak. This is an astounding interview.

Perspectives on an “outing” by Paul Mirengoff – “the informant used by the FBI in 2016 to gather information on the Trump campaign was not some previously unknown, top-secret asset whose exposure as an operative could jeopardize lives.”

“It’s understandable that the FBI and the mainstream media want to distract attention from the scandal of the FBI spying on a presidential campaign by talking about “outing” — first of a top secret agent and, when that narrative fell through, of a well-known longtime collaborator. This effort was never likely to succeed because the scandal of spying dwarfs the counter-narrative of “outing.” And now we know that the counter-narrative is a largely a smokescreen.

Venezuela “Votes.” Is There a Lesson Here For Democrats? By John Hinderaker – “barring your rivals from running is a tried-and-true path to a second term

“Here in the U.S, the Democratic Party tried a subtler approach.

At the moment, the Democrats’ relatively subtle approach doesn’t appear to be working very well. Next time, perhaps, they won’t take any chances, and will go full Maduro.

Investor’s Business Daily: The Net Neutrality Zombie Lives! – “The Senate has voted to raise net neutrality from the dead, a very bad idea.” … ““Net neutrality” is one of those brilliant marketing gimmicks that passes as something that enhances equality and freedom, but in fact destroys it.”

“The dead hand of government regulation will not promote competition, better services or lower prices. That only happens when market participants can respond to market demand and price their services accordingly. The House is expected to reject the bill, and we urge them to do so. If not, President Trump should veto it.

Uber Drivers Just Killed All the Parts of the Job They Supposedly Liked the Most, Coyote Blog – “the California Supreme Court has ruled that Uber drivers are Uber employees, not independent contractors, under California law

“People don’t always seem to have a good grasp of cause and effect. I don’t know if this is a general problem programmed into how humans think or one attributable to the sorry state of education. My favorite example is all the people who flee California due to the high taxes, housing prices, and stifling regulation and then — in their new state — immediately start voting for all the same things that caused them to flee California.

Congratulations Uber drivers, in the quest to try to use the power of government to extract more money for yourselves from the company, you just killed your jobs as you know it. You may have had freedom before but now you are working in Office Space like the rest of us.

It will be interesting to see if a bunch of California progressives let $50 billion in equity go down the drain just to avoid offending the sensibilities of their fellow California progressives.

God Hates Gun Violence by Mark Galli – “We American Christians have a biblical call to reduce firearm deaths in our land.” Violence isn’t in the Ten Commandments. False witness is. Galli provids an example of how the Devil corrupts men’s souls. Galli commits violence against truth in his comments in Christianity Today. He chooses a weapon to castigate, skirts around hum an nature in a deceitful way, and propagates myths of anti-gun fanatics.

Trump Is Going Full Alinsky – and His Opponents Are Flummoxed by Brian C. Joondeph – “What a refreshing treat to finally be on offense, scoring touchdowns, leaving Democrats and NeverTrumps babbling.” … “Let’s look at a few of the rules Trump has used to turn the new world order upside-down.”

Code Red: The Coming Eruption by David Prentice – “Code Red for the left. Worst cognitive dissonance ever. They have no clue what is about to hit them.” There is hope that the ship will be righted and float to calmer seas.

Stephen Miller: Trump America’s ‘negotiator-in-chief,’ what voters wanted ‘times 10’ by Paul Bedard – “In a break from past administrations, President Trump is using brass knuckles to personally cut deals on trade, military burden sharing, diplomacy, domestic energy production and regulations that aides describe as unprecedented and propelling an economic boom.”

““Everything that the American people hoped for when they cast that ballot for change for a new kind of leadership in Washington, everything that they hoped they would get, I am telling you that they not only received it, but they’ve gotten it times 10,” said senior aide Stephen Miller.

Donald Trump’s Socratic method by Ronald Kessler – “While the press likes to portray President Trump as impetuous and impatient with details, when it comes to important decisions, he usually weighs options carefully.”

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