Archive for government

No escape?

Desperately seeking perfection. Sam Younnokis – “If the USA is a terrible, horrible place, what country do the (Millennial and elitist) critics think we should try to be like? Ignorance is bliss?

“Have the critics spent a year in whatever country that is? It seems reasonable that they should, to be sure they know what that country looks like instead of relying on second- and thirdhand reports.

It sounds promising when critics say we should give free medical care and education to everyone, and maybe in some ideal world, that would happen. Where is it happening right now? Nowhere.

Sweden has a great reputation among the perfectionists, but have the critics studied its history? The Swedes owned slaves a long time ago, some from neighboring peoples who were also Scandinavian, others from Ireland or places farther away. Do they get a pass if their slaves were white, or are they still on the hook for the immoral (by modern standards) practice of slavery? They also overran Norway at one point, not unlike Europeans overrunning the Native Americans in the United States. Are they still worth emulating, despite this awful (by modern standards) history?

The medical care provided by Cuba is supposedly state-of-the-art, but have the critics gone there for an extended period and experienced the care of the island’s doctors?

Truth is, no one who is here wants to leave. I’m not saying our country is perfect, but I doubt that perfection is possible. … We have nowhere to go. That is why we look for ways to fight for our country without tipping into civil war. This is, to us, the last best place on Earth, the shining city on a hill.

Will the Leakers in the Flynn Case Escape Justice? Julie Kelly – “Americans are reminded that the real criminals—top officials at our nation’s most trusted agencies—have yet to be charged for illegally leaking classified information about Flynn to the news media in an effort to sabotage Donald Trump’s presidency.”

“To date, none of the law enforcement or intelligence officials who illegally leaked the information about Flynn has been identified or charged, let alone tried and convicted.

while the wheels of justice move quickly for Trump associates such as Flynn, Paul Manafort, and Michael Cohen, there is no urgency in nabbing deep state criminals who actually threaten the rule of law and democratic norms. Despite their bluster about the danger that Trump poses to our institutions, it is they—not the president—who are destroying the integrity of those institutions without consequence.

Defeat and the Dossier Explain Everything. Victor Davis Hanson – “did we need Robert Mueller’s 18 months and $40 million to uncover and redirect to federal attorneys what was largely self-evident?”

“The diabolical Cohen also tried to enforce, extend, or create non-disclosure agreements (Swampese for hush money) with two women from Trump’s past. The two reappeared out of nowhere in 2016, apparently to translate their alleged Trump hookups of a few hours in years past to notoriety and additional profit in the new age of “President Trump.”

Who knows, had we a Robert Mueller in 1933 he might have been able to charge General Douglas MacArthur and his alleged bag man, aide Major Dwight Eisenhower, with at least something for secretly delivering a bribe of $15,000 to MacArthur’s then 19-year old mistress, Isabel Rosario Cooper (who allegedly had been the general’s mistress since she was 16).

And let us indict either the former director James Comey or the deputy director Andrew McCabe of the FBI—or both—for making false statements to federal investigators and Congress, given their respective testimonies under oath about leaking to the press and the role of the Steele dossier in FISA warrants cannot be reconciled.

To the degree there even exists a real 1799 Logan Act any more—which is meant to outlaw private citizens freelancing at foreign policy to undermine the current U.S. government—the locus classicus would obviously be citizen John Kerry’s secretive meetings this year with the Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif.

DC defrauded voters. Don Surber – “Prosecutors’ Narrative Is Clear: Trump Defrauded Voters. But What Does It Mean?” the New York Times asked in a headline.” Remember the McCarthy opinion cited here yesterday? That is the foil for Surber,

“The narrative means Bungling Bob Mueller cannot find any actual crime, and so he is making one up.

But the whole set up means Washington DC — from Congress to the media — still refuses to accept the results of the 2016 presidential election. The election of President Donald John Trump is America’s Brexit.

We live in times where those who were in power are willing to torch the earth to deny power to the people. The Senate dragged out confirmation of his appointees. The press lies about his every move. Obama’s people challenge every executive order in court, or so it seems.

The people crying fraud are the ones who want to defraud us.

Americans should not accept any charge against President Trump by this confederacy of swamp critters. They denied him a peaceful transition of power which nullifies any claim to moral high ground.

Federal Judge Rips DOJ and State, Orders Discovery on Clinton Emails. John Hinderaker – “At best, State’s attempt to pass off its deficient search as legally adequate during settlement negotiations was negligence born out of incompetence. At worst, career employees in the State and Justice Departments colluded to scuttle public scrutiny of Clinton, skirt FOIA, and hoodwink this Court.”

“One might note that it has been festering for a very long time. The relevant events are now six years in the past. The Obama administration was astonishingly successful at stonewalling investigations, and its stonewalling continues under a Department of Justice nominally led by a Republican, but staffed overwhelmingly by Democratic Party loyalists.

Judge Lamberth’s order explains at some length why the discovery he orders is not duplicative of other pending or resolved cases. Well and good, but a basic lesson here is the inadequacy of litigation as a check on abuse of government power. Apart from anything else, it is simply too slow. Congressional investigations potentially can be faster, but committees use their subpoena powers sparingly, for reasons I don’t understand, and congressional investigations are usually not competently conducted, apart from being hampered by rampant partisanship. It would help if we had either a nonpartisan or a two-party press, but we don’t.

Still, despite everything, the truth about Hillary Clinton’s scandalous tenure as Secretary of State may emerge in time for historians to evaluate it.

Comey Lied. Daniel John Sobieski – “James Comey is a serial liar and arguably a serial felon who supervised and directed Andrew McCabe, Peter Strzok, and Lisa Page in an organized deep state coup to keep Hillary Clinton out of prison and Donald Trump out of the White House.”

“In the normal course of events, one could understand the hundreds of “I don’t knows” and “I don’t recalls” former FBI Director James Comey during Friday’s testimony. Most FBI investigations are handled out of the field office in which the illegality allegedly occurred with the FBI Director not privy to all the details. But it was Comey who decided to run the whole Trump collusion and obstruction investigation out of FBI headquarters. He should have known and remembered every detail of his actions and those under him. He did.

Don’t count the “I can’t recalls” Just counting the contradictions and the lies would make quite a drinking game, starting the case which started it all — Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn’s “process lie”

Comey on Friday asked us all to believe that the man who remembered enough to write a book suddenly had total memory loss, saying “I don’t know” or the equivalent some 245 times.

Tucker is Wrong on this One. Elad Hakim – “Tucker Carlson’s conclusion that Trump is “not capable” and that he has not kept his promises is overly-simplistic and easily refuted.” describing what happens when you try too hard to be “fair and balanced.”

Chuck Todd, Lord of the Flies? Patricia McCarthy – “What is so fantastical about the mainstream media self-appointed czars of information delivery is how ignorant they are.”

“Ninety-five percent of those who pretend to deliver news to the American people are left-wing activists who consider it their honor and duty to tell the rest of us how to think. As Todd so freely opined at the “Recode Decode” podcast this week, they somehow failed to educate us illiterate morons who voted for Trump.

What is so fantastical about these people, these mainstream media self-appointed czars of information delivery, is how ignorant they are. Even Chris Wallace of “Fox News Sunday” seems to be either clueless about or uninterested in the available facts re: the crimes of the Clintons and the Obama administration.

Conservatives in America cannot escape the left. We are bombarded with their opinions, their agenda, all day every day. We cannot open a newspaper without being confronted with their opinions. We can’t watch a sit-com, with one exception, without being assaulted with their ideology. They, on the other hand, are clueless about our values, our hopes and prayers for this country. One would have to go looking for them and they most certainly do not go looking for them. And if they come across them by chance, they dismiss them as lunacy. They do not consider them, they just dismiss them. Critical thinking is being bred out of our culture; indoctrination reigns. Parents! Do not send your kids to university! Unless they are impervious to the dictates of the academic left, the values with which you raised them will have been eradicated by the time they graduate.

As in Lord of the Flies, our civilization is being eroded and undermined by the very people who claim to be its honest brokers. Chuck Todd and his ilk are the lords of the flies. They claim to be guardians of civilization while undermining it each and every day.

You cannot escape

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Don’t shortchange your objectives

Deconstructing the Anti-Gun Cult. Rich Logis – “It’s alarming how frequently Watts manipulates data to craft a narrative that America is held hostage to pervasive gun violence and how often she and her organization regurgitate the usual debunked Democrat and DMIC (Democrat Media Industrial Complex) myths, lies, half-truths, and conspiracy theories.”

“Anti-gun propaganda is powerful, and Watts’s skills are finely honed. Her LinkedIn profile shows that she held director and vice president positions with global reach at a prominent public relations firm, Monsanto, and General Electric Healthcare.

Another effective play out of the Everytown playbook is the use of eye-catching color graphs that show America’s alleged gun apocalypse:

Do Watts and Bloomberg know even a scintilla of this information? I suspect they do, just as they know that “assault weapon” has no actual mechanical or technical meaning, irrespective of how much their DMIC and politician sycophants parrot the lie.

Aspiring gun-confiscators always say the NRA has blood on its hands, but I’ve always thought those with fantasies of confiscation have more.

If the cult wants to be taken seriously by the “gun nuts,” tell the truth – the whole truth.

Ocasio-Cortez already threatening to abuse her office before even being sworn-in. Thomas Lifson – “Warning that it is stupid to troll someone who will join a body with subpoena power is clearly a threat to use that body’s power to retaliate. There is no other reason to mention that power.”

A Survival Strategy for Conservatives. Rick Hayes – “In the current political arena, conservatives are facing off against leftist Democrats in a blood contest in which the current rules favor only the left.”

“It’s more than just a lopsided playing field; it’s a contest where conservatives are forbidden to score and are the only side charged with penalties. And yet conservatives continue to enter these contests expecting to be treated fairly.

A lie is only a lie if it emanates from the lips of a conservative. Otherwise, it’s called a “misstatement” leading to no repercussions. Immunity agreements are granted only to those close to Democrats under investigation. Otherwise, everyone associated with a conservative under investigation is blackmailed with career-ending, bankruptcy producing charges.

How many times have we watched a conservative win a debate against a liberal only to be lambasted as being too much of a bully or mean-spirited?

It appears to be acceptable for conservatives to be labeled by their race, age, and sex without a hint of any objection by the media, whereas the mere mention of race, sex, or age by a conservative is grounds for ridicule, scorn, and being further labeled as a racist, sexist, or bigot.

Interesting. The objective cited is “survival.”  Contrast that to the President’s objective: winning. 

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Strike out. Doesn’t seem to matter. Yet?

Return to civility means surrender to the Democrats and media. J. Marsolo – “President Bush was a gentleman, a war hero, and courteous and civil to his political opponents. But his opponents, Dems and the media, were not civil to him, nor were they civil in their opposition to Bush’s policies and nominees.”

“In sum, Trump is not “civil” because he replies to his opponents who viciously attack him. Bush was civil because he raised taxes, attacked the NRA, and did not reply to those who attacked him. The Dems and the media want to return to the “civility” where the Dems and media attack and destroy, and Trump does not respond to the attacks. The Dems and the media are not used to a Republican who fights back when attacked.

Trump fights back, while the “civil” Republicans lay down and took the abuse like good sports. How dare Trump be anything but civil?

Ace of Spades uses a Jonah Goldberg example to illustrate why people like Glenn Reynolds avoid Twitter. Screaming Fake News™ then whispering corrections …

“It’s not good for society when two camps have contradictory beliefs about the basic facts they build their worldviews on — and those who do this deliberately, or who are churlish and grudging about correcting LIES they pumped out to the world (albeit unwillingly) are adding to the strife and division they write one column every two weeks decrying.

It would be good if we could all agree on the facts, wouldn’t it?

The war on standards, STEM edition. Paul Mirengoff – “Underlying this nonsense is the dogmatic assumption that, but for systemic discrimination and “microaggressions,” female representation in STEM would equal male representation.”

 

“Heather Mac Donald has written and spoken extensively about how identity politics is hampering America’s ability to maintain its dominance in STEM fields. Our main competitors, most notably China, are focused on making sure the best scientists, mathematicians, and engineers are doing the work. They care nothing about gender. And they spend virtually every dollar related to STEM on hard research and analysis.

The U.S., by contrast, is preoccupied with the gender and (to a lesser extent) the race and ethnicity of who is in the lab. And we pour money into promoting identity politics in STEM.
… 
Somehow, one doubts that China is indulging in these self-defeating shenanigans.

Ninth Circuit fully beclowns itself on illegal immigration. Jazz Shaw – “despite being smacked down by the Supreme Court on review, the judges on Tuesday went one step further and began striking down (or at least weakening) federal immigration law.”

 

“Tashima, who was originally nominated as a District Court judge by Jimmy Carter and later elevated to the Ninth Circuit by Bill Clinton, seems to be taking an overly broad view of the free speech issue. Certainly, the First Amendment protects even the most unpopular speech and opinions, but it’s long been established that there are limits to that right.

What’s under discussion here is not an airing of opinions or debate of an issue. It’s an example of incitement to engage in criminal behavior. We already have similar laws on the books and have for ages. Laws covering Incitement to Riot (under Title 18) draw clear distinctions between “urging or instigating other persons” (which is illegal) and “advocacy of ideas or expressions of belief, not involving advocacy of any act” (which is not illegal).

WaPo: Four Pinocchios to kickstart AOC’s Congressional career. Ed Morrissey gets in a ‘both sides do it’ dig here that contradicts itself. That is a form of rationalizing a deceit that is, perhaps, at the foundation of the point he is making. When it comes to the Left, incidents and facts of significance are cited as examples. When it comes to Trump (notable selection bias indication on this), it is just vague allegation.

“However, this episode demonstrates an uncomfortable fact of public life that has been expanding for quite a long time. At least politically, we have moved into a post-fact world. Some will point to Donald Trump as the main driver, and while he’s certainly a contributor, he’s hardly the starting point. Perhaps it began with Vietnam or Watergate; possibly one could point to Iran-Contra and have some justification. What seems undeniable is that we had begun moving in that direction by the time Monica’s blue dress emerged and suddenly presidential perjury was deemed not a big deal, and we had fully embraced it by the time we heard that a video was the cause of our woefully undersecured and abandoned consulate in Benghazi being sacked. Hillary Clinton ran just as shamelessly as Trump did in 2016, refusing to tell the truth about her own abuses of power.

Ocasio-Cortez will keep fact-checkers busy with her ignorance on math, budgets, and policy, but she won’t be the only one. We’ve incentivized shameless prevarication, and the only ones who will benefit from it are the demagogues and the fact-checkers who may or may not bother to unwind their lies. Kudos to Rizzo for aggressively checking Ocasio-Cortez in this instance, but until we care about honesty in political debate, we’re gonna send a lot more Ocasio-Cortezes his way while they talk us into disastrous policies — like Medicare for All.

On this, consider a VDH ‘angry reader’ response. The claim is the narrative “Since you never state that POTUS lies 80-85% of the time when he speaks publicly, what are some examples of his fake news.” VDH notes the ad hominem and lack of specificity in the claim and suggests “why not just focus on one network, CNN, and consider just a few of their more recent transgressions?

The headlines today are about Michael Flynn. See From fishy beginning, Mueller case against Michael Flynn nears end with no jail recommendation. Byron York – “What the sentencing recommendation did not address was the sketchy beginnings of the Flynn investigation.”

“Hill Republicans have been suspicious about the the Flynn case for quite a while. But they have not been able to get their hands on some key documents and testimony that might tell them what happened.

House investigators have a chance to learn more this week when, on Friday, Comey appears for a behind-closed-doors interview with members of the Judiciary and Oversight committees.

One-Eyed-Jack Law. Victor Davis Hanson – “Criminals and partisans, accusing others of criminality and partisanship.” Here’s a catalog to peruse …

“Mueller cannot fulfill the hype of the past 18 months, which forecast that the “all-stars,” the “dream-team,” and the Mueller “army” would make short work of the supposedly buffoonish Trump by proving that he colluded with Russia to swing an election. Collusion, remember, was hyped as doing what the Logan Act, the emoluments clause, the 25th Amendment, impeachment, media frenzy, and assassination-chic rhetoric had not.

By indicting a number of minor characters on charges that so far have nothing to do with collusion — for purported crimes mostly committed after the special-counsel appointment — Mueller has emphasized the quantity rather than the quality of indictments.

Mueller has already weaponized politics, making a crime out of the tawdry business of opposition research — but only sort of, since his interests in doing so are highly selective. And so his chief legacy will have little to do with whatever he finds on Donald Trump. He has already established the precedent that there is now no real equality under the law, at least as Americans once understood fair play and blind justice.

Such skullduggery poses the question of whether Mueller’s investigation has been simply derailed by partisanship. Or has it effectively served as a deliberate distraction from the felonious behavior of dozens of Obama-administration and Clinton-campaign officials — all determined to ensure, by any means necessary, that Trump would never be president?

Scott Johnson says Analyze this – “In my contrarian “Notes on the Cohen plea,” I made these points among others: … Now what? Probably nothing. I do not pretend to know. The truth of the matter nevertheless has its own continuing claim on our attention.”

Another take: Mueller strikes out trying to nail Trump – Flynn sentencing memo is a big nothing. Gregg Jarrett – “The memo isn’t a “smoking gun” showing President Trump colluded with Russians to win the 2016 presidential election or did anything else illegal.”

“Flynn should never have been prosecuted. The FBI agents who interviewed him concluded that he was telling the truth. This was confirmed by both former FBI Director James Comey and his deputy, Andrew McCabe, when they testified before congressional investigators. Had Mueller been forced to prove his case in court, he would have lost.

The law requires that a false statement be made “willfully and knowingly” (18 U.S.C. 1001). If Flynn’s recollection of the conversation with Russian Ambassador Kislyak is inconsistent with a transcript of their conversation, secretly recorded, it is not a crime. If Flynn interpreted his discussion differently than the FBI, it is also not a crime.

Flynn pleaded guilty not because he lied, but because Mueller crushed him financially and threatened to take legal action against the retired Army general’s son.

Flynn’s decision was understandable. Mueller’s actions were, and are, unconscionable and wrong.

Bureaucrats have the power to turn a tiny glitch into an insurmountable hurdle. Luboš Motl – “As you know, I hate bureaucracy – and some very real and viscerally unpleasant experience with bureaucratic operations is a substantial part of my opposition to the ideals of the Big Government, or almost any government or a left-wing social construct, for that matter.” A tale of woe, an example, and a warning…

“Now, the whole system is corrupt – too many pensioners want their pensions to go up and they will support any liar, perhaps any murderer or any kind of scum, as long as it will increase their expectation value of their pension. What are the prospects of a nation where democracy turns into this corruption where liars increasingly steal the money from the productive part of the nation and they are defending of their increasingly self-evident lies? As Benjamin Franklin said, once the people find out they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic. And we are seeing it in Czechia. When “democracy” wins over some totally self-evident and demonstrable facts and truths, it’s too bad.

The Coyote has found a take on the Russian Collusion, from TA Frank at Vanity Fair, “that seems to almost perfectly capture my current take on the whole affair.” It is honest in that it accepts the lack of supporting evidence. It suffers otherwise. Note the vague allegations that tend towards ad hominem (“Certainly, Trump’s ethical standards are low”) and judgmental rather than opinion. The definition of sleaze is also interesting. Then there is the attempt to minimize the Clinton impeachment as simple, justifiable perjury rather than perjury about domestic violence and abuse of intern relationships. That leads to excusing what the assault on Trump is doing in regards to relationships and dealing with Russia, a matter that has very serious implications. Indeed, Frank seems to think all is peachy keen with Russia despite goings-on in places like the Ukraine or the missile treaty or other expressions of Russian aggression.

 

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Conspiracy needs exceptional support. Is it there?

A Picture Is Worth More Than A Thousand Words To The Trained Eye. Jamie Wells, M.D – “Omission in itself, intentional or not, foments an inaccurate to more demonstrably false narrative depending on the degree.”

“With the rapid pace of technology spreading a word or image globally in a matter of seconds, the old saying “a lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on” is ever the more relevant today. We are a quick assumption first, deal with the collateral damage of corrective action later culture. And it is to our detriment. This manifests in little to big ways.

there are many ways to respect individual privacy and a person’s autonomy to disclose as much or as little as they desire and clarify inconsistent and erroneous messages that get spread as a result. But, the most important method of achieving this often delicate dance is urging the reintroduction into our culture of critical thinking and reasoning. Accepting what is shown as is with spoon-fed consumption does not make for an informed participant in society.

What’s the lesson? Because many sayings are timeless for a reason, when it comes to being intellectually honest and learning “the devil is in the details.”

The Scientifically Ignorant Drive GMO Debate. Alex Berezow – “There’s no nice way to put this. The scientifically ignorant are driving society’s science debates.”

“A few years ago, I reported on a study that found that people who were uninterested in science were the ones who were most fearful of it. I wrote that they “believe that science causes more problems than it solves, believe that humans should not tamper with nature, [and] feel that technology advances too quickly for them to understand.”

That paper’s finding was in complete agreement with the results of the new Pew study. And it adds to the growing narrative that one of the biggest threats to science comes from a society that remains willfully ignorant about it. How can we educate people about science if they don’t want to be educated?

Even worse, there are plenty of people who are willing to make a quick buck by cashing in on the public’s ignorance. …

It’s simply a truth of human nature that we are far more motivated by fear than by gratitude. That’s why political campaigns are almost universally about how horrible the other candidate is. It’s much easier to get a person to vote against someone (out of fear) rather than for someone (out of gratitude).

The bottom line, then, is that science debates are actually a struggle against human nature. And that is one tough thing to overcome, but it can be done.

The gender wage gap. Neo – “A new study underlines what many of us already knew.”

“It is very similar to the old “equality of opportunity” (the conservative point of view, although it was once also the liberal point of view) versus “equality of outcome” (the current leftist/liberal point of view, because leftist and liberal have increasingly fused).

The American public has been slowly, and then recently more quickly, moving to the latter goal from the former one: outcome vs. mere opportunity. How did this happen? …

It also helps that most people do not understand research and statistics. … since the basics also seem to be beyond the grasp of many people, most people are going to rely on interpreters of research—for example, articles in the MSM—to elucidate matters. And since the MSM has its own agenda, and that agenda is political rather than an objective reporting on the facts, way too many readers are going to assume that the MSM’s summary of the meaning of a research finding is reliable.

In other words, propaganda works, and the less a person knows about the actual subject matter, the more likely the propaganda will work for that person

The Best Argument Yet for Keeping the Caravan Out. Pedro Gonzalez – “Love, like hate, can blind us from seeing things as they really are. America is in a toxic relationship with immigration, and like a battered spouse, progressives keep crawling back to the same tropes and lies.”

Does ‘Make X Great Again’ Ever Happen in History? Victor Davis Hanson – “it is a scary idea that the fate of making America great again might hinge on the nihilism of the Democratic Party.”

Expert thinks Trump was set up. Don Surber – “At least six people with long-established ties to the FBI or to U.S. and Western intelligence made entrees to key figures in the Trump business organization or his presidential campaign between March and October 2016,” Solomon wrote.

Notes on the Cohen plea (2). Scott Johnson – “Sources tell Sperry that Mueller apparently withheld exculpatory evidence in the Criminal Information he filed last week against Cohen for lying about the duration of talks about a never-realized Moscow Trump Tower.” … “I would add, however, that I am quite sure it will not look anything like exoneration in Mueller’s report.”

Senator Mark Warner: The SSCI is “Working Closely” With Robert Mueller. sundance – “This is not me just haphazardly making a theory of how a corrupt Senate Committee and a corrupt Special Counsel working in concert with each other with mutual interests. This stuff is in our faces. All of the data-points involving the SSCI go in one direction…. toward corruption. There is not a single data-point going in the other direction.”

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When truth gets in the way, find a new way to skin the cat

When The Truth Gets In The Way. Derek Hunter – “there actually isn’t anything I can think progressives won’t toss aside, or into a woodchipper, if it became an inconvenience or an obstacle. This week was no different.”

“News organizations and Trump-hating journalists (which is just about all of them) were sexually aroused at the prospect of this latest, greatest smoking gun – that Don Jr. lied to Congress about…the timeline of discussions regarding a possible Trump Tower being built in Moscow. OK, not exactly the most exciting of charges, and certainly not conspiring to “steal” an election, but Democrats don’t really care how they destroy someone, they just want them destroyed.

But a funny thing happened on the way to the gallows – it was a lie. Not what Donald Trump Jr. said, he didn’t lie; the story was a lie. After five hours being a live story from NPR, and editor’s note” was added to this “blockbuster.”

You can add this to long list of bogus stories and narrative-enforcing lies that were wished true by reporters only to be proven otherwise after they’d spread and done their damage. And that’s really the point of these “fake news” stories, why they aren’t caught in the editing process, why no editors or publishers question stories that so perfectly encapsulate what pundits hope for but for which there is zero proof. It HAS to be true because they WANT it to be true.

What Is ‘Ballot Harvesting,’ And How Did California Dems Use It To Nuke The GOP? Scott Morefield – “Passed as a barely noticed change in the state’s vote by mail procedures in 2016 and signed by then-Governor Jerry Brown, California’s AB 1921 allows voters to give any third party — not just a relative or someone living in the same household, as was previously the law — to collect and turn in anyone else’s completed ballot.” There’s more than one way to skin a cat and the Left is very creative in finding them.

“Called “ballot harvesting,” critics say the practice is ripe for fraud. Consider “Lulu,” who was recorded trying to “harvest” what she thought was a Democratic voter’s ballot in Rep. Knight’s district.

It’s a “new service,” said Lulu, for “like, people who are supporting the Democratic party.”

The San Francisco Chronicle reported that 250,000 such ballots were used in Orange County alone, resulting in a Democratic sweep there.

Before its passage, a group opposed to the bill wrote: “AB 1921 would allow anybody to walk into an elections office and hand over truckloads of vote by mail envelopes with ballots inside, no questions asked, no verified records kept. It amounts to an open invitation to large-scale vote buying, voter coercion, “granny farming”, and automated forgery. AB 1921 solves no problem that a simple stamp can’t solve.

The Russia Probe Has Nothing to Do with Russia. Roger L Simon – “America is at war with itself and the russia probe is the leading, but far from the only, front in that war.”

“From the Okhrana (the tsars’ secret police that authored the Protocols of the Elders of Zion and specialized in agents provocateurs) to the Cheka to the NKVD to the KGB to the FSB, it has always been the same. The Russians — Soviet or not — have always engaged in disinformation. Their recent Facebook and Twitter oerings were nothing more than the tip of an iceberg that’s been sailing for years.

In other words words, there’s nothing new here. The indictments of the Russian hackers by Mueller and Company were no more than a face-saving charade.

Another Turbulent Week with Some Big Mysteries. Clarice Feldman – “From the outside it looks like Mueller used the FBI to harass someone who had the goods on him.”

“Doubtless, hoping to keep Manhattan hysterics from requiring hospitalization when their dreams are dashed, the NY Times prepares to let its readers decompress gradually, reporting that the President’s recall of the Russian deal and the documents he provided matches Cohen’s account.

Those of us watching the Mueller escapades and believing his role is to protect himself and the other DOJ, FBI, Obama officials, and intel heads from exposure for their misuse of national security information to target Trump are beginning to despair of their ever being brought to justice.

Surely, there are plenty of signs that the Mueller camp has grown desperate.

The FBI Raided My Sister’s House. sundance – “We already know the Senate Intelligence Committee is at significant risk and entirely tied-up in the matrix of a weaponized intelligence apparatus.”

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Blown narratives. So what.

NPR Blatantly Lies About Donald Trump Jr.’s 2017 Senate Testimony. Mollie Hemingway – “NPR falsely claimed that Donald Trump Jr.’s testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee in September 2017 conflicted with an account given by a former attorney for President Donald Trump.” Another careful takedown analysis of another event in the ongoing smear and propaganda campaign. The NPR response is also telling. See Ace of Spades – “NPR Adds a Huge “Clarification” To Article, But Does Not Retract It Or Admit The Central Claim It Made Is Entirely False

Comey Lawyers Tell Federal Judge: “Here’s your opportunity, judge, to make some law”. Sundance – “There is growing acceptance that federal officials feel they are above the law; two sets of legal principles that apply; one exclusive set for them, and another set for everyone else.”

“Though it might seem rather stunning for any federal official to make such an admission in public, that’s exactly what happened today. Lawyers representing former FBI Director James Comey made exactly that argument. Recognizing Mr. Comey had no legal basis to avoid a congressional subpoena, Comey’s lawyers actually said:

Here’s your opportunity, judge, to make some law.” (link)

The Nixon ‘Road Map’ Won’t Save Mueller’s Futile Prosecution. Conrad Black – “Completely insufficient attention has been paid to the recent revelations about the grand jury and federal court findings against President Richard Nixon. In a word, the entire basis of the case against Nixon himself has been completely undermined.” The current efforts to derail a President reveal similar ugly hate politics against Nixon. Dirty laundry is being examined and the dirt reveals the victim isn’t that portrayed by the Deep State and its media arm.

“The case against Nixon has always been based on the claim that he authorized the payment of campaign funds to people implicated in the Watergate break-in to encourage them to alter their testimony, and thus he obstructed justice.

About six weeks ago, three prominent lawyers from the Watergate era sued for all the Nixon “road map” material to be opened, because they were seeking the release of comparable material, insofar as there is any in the Trump inquiry, to be opened as well. The evidence opened up by the Shepard lawsuit to reveal the grand jury evidence involving Nixon. Nixon’s comments to the grand jurors who visited him reveal that the congressional committees and the Washington grand juries were falsely advised that the Nixon version of events effectively confirmed the road map.

In reality, Richard Nixon’s evidence conformed exactly to what he said about these matters in all other cases: that he had never approved or authorized any payments to obstruct justice, alter testimony or tampered with witnesses, and that he resigned as president when he learned that courts and congressional committees indicative of likely votes in both houses of Congress concluded that the road map was accurate and that Nixon would be convicted.

The historic implications of what has been discovered are very serious. No one with any interest in Richard Nixon, Watergate, and the continuing strutting and primping of the veterans of the Watergate catacombs—especially Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein—should listen to the podcast of authentic legal historian and Watergate veteran Geoff Shepard that has been posted by the Nixon Foundation below

At least there was a crime at the Watergate and a few other places. But both attempts at pseudo-legal putsches are and have been disgusting and profoundly illegal corruptions of the system, and contribute to an understanding of why the American prosecutors win a North Korean level 99 percent of their indictments, 97 percent without a trial, and the sweet land of liberty has six to 12 times as many incarcerated people per capita as comparable large and prosperous democracies: Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Japan, and the United Kingdom.

Mueller, by trying to destroy Trump through illicit means, is going to force a general examination of prosecutorial abuses. In the process, the reputation of an outstanding president will inevitably be redeemed. President Nixon’s one full term was one of the most successful in the country’s history.

Another blown narrative: USC study shows migrant caravan not about escaping ‘violence’. Monica Showalter – “What they’re not is people fleeing violence and persecution. So the asylum “narrative” promoted in the press and by the left-wing lawyers now stands exposed as phony.”

“That’s significant because the press has been playing up the asylum claims, and politicians such as California’s governor-elect have been making political hay off it. Turning on the treacle, Gavin Newsom tried to frame Sunday’s border charge as violence on people fleeing violence:

There we have it: “fleeing violence.” The term is repeated again and again in the left’s bid to create a “narrative.”

Except that it’s not violence that’s being fled; it’s the wages of being uneducated, low-skilled, and wanting more. Plus the big banquet of U.S. bennies – it’s always all about the bennies.

does a blown narrative make any difference to the underlying belief? Evidence only suggests is makes the behavior even more anomalous.

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imaginary hobgoblins, foreboding

New U.S. Climate Report a ‘Scientific Embarrassment’. Tom Harris And Dr. Madhav Khandekar – “The 1,656-page NCA report, produced by a team from thirteen federal agencies, is riddled with imaginary hobgoblins. Especially mistaken is the NCA’s repeated reference to increased warming and extreme weather events, both in the recent past and in the future.” The real question is why there is such mass delusion despite overwhelming evidence.

Nir Shaviv in Bundestag. Luboš Motl – “Gene has informed me that the Israeli astrophysicist, climate skeptic, and TRF guest blogger Nir Shaviv gave a testimony in the German Parliament, the greenest Parliament of any country in the world, on Wednesday.” It’s another example to the effect climate alarmism has on stimulating questionable behavior, especially in reactions against those who try to expose fantasy to reality.

Blackouts, deaths and civil unrest: warning over Scotland’s rush to go green. From The Herald Scotland, Sandra Dick – “A massive gap in the electricity system caused by the closure of coal-fired power stations and growth of unpredictable renewable generation has created the real prospect of complete power failure.” Read the full story here.

William Safire on Bungling Bob Mueller. Don Surber – “Safire pointed out that their excuse to seize power was to stop another 9/11.” … “Thus we see the seizure of new powers of surveillance is a smokescreen to hide failure to use the old power.”

“Safire saw the federal government for what it is: a bunch of blowhards covering their backsides. He also laid into John Ashcroft, the attorney general who proved conservatives are just as inept as liberals.

Fishing expeditions are Mueller’s specialty.

“This is not some nightmare of what may happen someday. It happened last week. Jim Sensenbrenner, chairman of House Judiciary, said the removal of restraints made him ‘queasy;’ Pat Leahy of Senate Judiciary is too busy blocking judges to object. Some sunshine libertarians are willing to suffer this loss of personal freedom in the hope that the Ashcroft-Mueller rules of intrusion may prevent a terror attack. They won’t because they’re a fraud.”

Remember Prague? In Michael Cohen plea deal, Mueller says nothing about key collusion allegation. Byron York – “the chattering class instantly began talking about the failed Trump Tower Moscow project.”

“it turns out the Cohen plea agreement also made news in what it did not cover. Specifically, it spoke volumes — without saying a word — about a key allegation of the Trump dossier, the charge that Cohen traveled to Prague to arrange secret payments to Russian hackers attacking the Clinton campaign. The accusation is the heart of the collusion allegation, and Trump-Russia special counsel Robert Mueller’s deal with Cohen strongly suggests that prosecutors have not found evidence to support it.

For more than a year, a number of Trump-Russia investigators on Capitol Hill have maintained that none of the dossier’s substantive allegations are true. The new plea deal between Cohen and Mueller is more evidence to support that.

But evidence doesn’t seem to matter to many. They’ ll make it up if they need to to keep their narrative going.

Foreboding – FBI Raids Home of Clinton Foundation Whistleblower. Sundance – “Make sure you read the entire [Daily Caller] article because if the DOJ was intending to throw a bag over the entire Clinton Foundation investigation and cover-it-up, that raid is exactly what they would do.”

“If the reporting of the raid by the Daily Caller is accurate; and given the nature of the timing for that raid; and accepting the at risk elements within the whistleblower case extended beyond Hillary Clinton to Robert Mueller; and noting how the SSCI was the recipient of the information/evidence as transmitted by Michael Horowitz; there is a solid appearance of the DOJ maneuvering to cover-up the underlying DOJ/FBI corruption by seizing -and controlling- all of the evidence.

How is this level of blatant disregard possible? Seriously, I really don’t know

It would appear there is no limit to what the corrupt Deep State officials will do to hide their unlawful activity; and apparently there’s not an honest person amid the organizations who can stop them. FUBAR. Very disturbing.

I hope I’m wrong.

Maybe there’s a valid reason for this FBI raid; if so, I can’t think of one.

Thomas Sowell – “Much of the social history of the Western world over the past three decades has involved replacing what worked with what sounded good.”

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Insults the intelligence – more examples

Ivanka: Come on, my e-mail issue is nothing like Hillary’s. Ed Morrissey – “There may be room to criticize judgment when officials don’t strictly adhere to their official e-mail accounts, but this proposed equivalency insults the intelligence.”

“To the extent there’s an issue at all, for that matter. ABC News’ Deborah Roberts presses Ivanka Trump to explain why people should treat her use of private e-mail any differently than Hillary Clinton’s as Secretary of State in an interview aired today on Good Morning America. Other than not transmitting classified material, not deleting half of all the messages while under subpoena, and not setting up a poorly secured server to evade constitutional oversight, Ivanka says, no difference at all

Clinton’s secret e-mail system was part of a deliberate and intentional design to corrupt legitimate oversight over her work at State by Congress and the courts, and succeeded at doing so. It was that corruption that had her political opponents demanding prosecution, and it should have resulted in legal consequences at least for the exposure of classified material in the course of that corrupt scheme. Perhaps Ivanka Trump should be more careful about ensuring that official business only comes through official accounts (and so should all public officials), but without that corruption, there is no equivalency between Ivanka and Hillary. This is just an excuse by ABC and other news media to minimize Clinton’s corruption.

Twitter restores Jesse Kelly’s account, claims suspension was temporary. John Sexton – “Though the reason for the removal of the account was a mystery, Twitter did clarify that the suspension was permanent.”

“The problem is compounded by the fact that there is almost no transparency in these cases. Kelly was perma-banned by Twitter with no explanation and no avenue of appeal offered. Two days later, after a lot of reaction from the right, he’s back and Twitter has a completely new story. There doesn’t seem to be any clear process behind any of this, just whatever whims are striking people at Twitter in a given moment.

Does anyone think Jesse Kelly would have had his account restored if he didn’t have lots of high profile people on the right willing to talk about his situation? I think Twitter looked at the reaction and decided retreat was their best option, but that doesn’t mean they’ve learned anything from this. How long before they decide to ban someone else on the right, instantly and without explanation? Not every person who gets banned is going to have the benefit of a segment on national television to help change Twitter’s mind.

Arbitrary and capricious. No process due or otherwise. Changing minds, changing stories. Insults a lot more than intelligence.

About those nooses found at the Mississippi state capitol (Update) . John Sexton – “the nooses and the “hate signs” were all a stunt designed to get attention for a progressive political message on the eve of an election. This is the far left’s idea of a voter guide.”

“Whoever placed the signs and nooses must be thrilled with how all of this worked out. They did their best to identify themselves with the signs but still got several hours in which the nooses were assumed by many to be the work of some right-wing hate group running rampant. The station that initially published the photos, the Associated Press, and the Capitol police didn’t do a great job explaining what had actually happened here in a timely manner.

Mississippi Rejects Democrat Race-Baiting. David Catron – “The Democrats … thought they had hit pay dirt when an out-of-state activist posing as a journalist found a video of Hyde-Smith saying something that could, with enough media topspin, be portrayed as an endorsement of Jim Crow.”

“It turns out, however, that Mississippi voters are not quite the fools the Democrats and the media took them for. Indeed, the transparent contempt with which the latter regard the residents of the Magnolia State probably contributed to the size of Espy’s loss. Instead of explaining why the Democrat would do a better job representing them than the Republican, they treated the voters like idiots.

They’ll just write the loss off to the inability of racist hayseeds to see the one true path of identity politics. Twitter will be filled with snide remarks about all the bigoted brain donors still waiting for the South to rise again.

The Hate For Melania’s Christmas Decor Is Even Worse This Year. Here Are The Many Cruel Things Leftists Are Saying. Paul Bois – “It’s well-established that we live in hell

“You may love Melania Trump’s taste in Christmas decorations; you may indeed dislike them, or perhaps even detest them. To each his own. But the venom leftists have spewed at the First Lady these past two years regarding her Christmas decor goes beyond mere differences in taste and into pure “Mean Girls” territory.

Media critic and DePauw University professor Jeffrey McCall agreed that the reporting on Melania’s work was “boorish.”

“Melania’s decorating touches have not received the same courtesy in a number of media accounts, as if reporters had any sense of stylish interior design in the first place,” McCall told Fox News. “This boorish reporting about the First Lady’s holiday decorating is culturally divisive and unnecessary.”

‘Are You Comfortable Tear-Gassing Children?’ L. Brent Bozell and Tim Graham – “TV networks, over-reliant on emotional images and under-reliant on facts, are presenting this as they present everything else: as an outrage caused by … President Trump.”

“So here’s the first thing we know: The Border Patrol was using tear gas at the border in the years of President Obama whenever illegal immigrants were brutally throwing rocks at our agents. Does anyone remember NBC asking Obama if he was comfortable tear-gassing children? Or did no one care about the immigrants then?

NBC was especially egregious because it never mentioned the rock throwing. To witness a barrage of rocks flying, as we have, and to see the mortal danger they pose (yes, they can kill) is to understand that agents are protecting themselves. This is how anchorman Lester Holt began, using Jackson’s obnoxious question: “President Trump is defending the use of tear gas on migrants who rushed at a major border crossing and attempted to get into the U.S. illegally.” That’s the action word — “rushed.”

Why can’t NBC report that deadly projectiles were thrown? And why does it always spread the silly notion that “it began peacefully”? There’s nothing peaceful about a mob rushing the border. There’s a term for this kind of reporting. It’s “fake news.”

Creating chaos — and “iconic” photos — was the point of the caravan organizers. It’s emotionally manipulative to the core, and the actual context of the photo only gets in the way of the propaganda. This isn’t “Nightly News.” It’s a mudslinging political advertisement.

It’s what illegal-immigrant organizers wanted, and what networks led by NBC were gullible enough to report.

Debunking 3 Myths About Trump Border Enforcement. Fred Lucas – “many of the critiques either don’t provide full context or are factually incorrect, based on information released Tuesday by the Department of Homeland Security.” … child separation, tear-gassing, asylum seeking, get the reality you won’t find in the mainstream Leftist propaganda machine.

Eternal Darkness of the Leftist Mind. Lloyd Marcus – “Folks, I continue asking myself, why do leftists think so differently from the rest of us?” Examples from Oprah, Dion, Eastern Michigan University, Will Ferrell and others …

“The most disturbing example of weird leftist thinking is their desire for America, their homeland, to suffer and fail. When Democrats take over the House in January, they will be obsessed with rolling back every one of Trump’s remarkable achievements for America. Our economy is booming. Black, Hispanic, women, and Asian unemployment are at historic lows.

Trump has ended the U.S. being exploited by foreign countries. Why is all this good news for Americans deemed bad news in the warped minds of leftists?

Please stop playing with my Holocaust, Geraldo/Cortez. Jack Engelhard – “Ignorance? Anti-Semitism? There is no comparison between today’s militant migrants and Holocaust survivors and no excuse for the spurious comparison.”

“It appears that throughout this entire great country, we have but one proper news channel, Fox News, and even over there we can use a day without Juan Williams.

Or Geraldo Rivera.

Geraldo Rivera is a man in his 70s. By this time he should be less of a fool. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is in her 20s and the product of our Progressive schools.

She cannot help but be an ignoramus. But either way, their beliefs are poisonous, indefensible and unconscionable.

Knowledge and Certainty “Laundering” Via Computer Models. Coyote Blog – Lengthy and with an obligatory TDS example at the end but otherwise worth considering to understand by climate and the economy are both easily subject to misunderstanding and use as propaganda tools.

“Paul Pfleiderer of Stanford University. … “In this essay I discuss how theoretical models in finance and economics are used in ways that make them “chameleons” and how chameleons devalue the intellectual currency and muddy policy debates. A model becomes a chameleon when it is built on assumptions with dubious connections to the real world but nevertheless has conclusions that are uncritically (or not critically enough) applied to understanding our economy.”

The TDS example provides an illustration of a common problem. The climate and economic arguments are about the future or what will be. The TDS example is about explaining what has already occurred and a rather significant and sudden change that correlates well with particular actions and has a good weight of plausibility. It’s one thing to be skeptical or critical but another to be blindly so.

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Fighting the Fake. a Sisyphean task?

Global Warming: Fake Science Again Serves Far-Left Political Agenda. Investor’s Business Daily – “Time for mass panic? Nope. Just more fake science.” Yeh, but just try to tell that to the Vatican

 

“The new National Climate Assessment (NCA) report, the fourth since 2000, seems to suggest a coming climate disaster, to paraphrase the film comedy “Ghost Busters,” of “epic, even biblical proportions.” But its forecasts and models border on the absurd. At some point, the scientific malpractice in these global warming scare reports has to end.

“The Fourth National Climate Assessment offers no hard evidence, just vague assertions and claims that past climate change is no evidence about future climate change,” wrote Dr. Ken Haapala, president of the Science and Environmental Policy Project. “It earns the distinction that it does not meet the standards of the Information Quality Act, and each page should be stamped: ‘Based on speculation, not hard evidence.’ ”

As we said, at some point the scientific malpractice of these government exercises in global warming propaganda has to end. This isn’t fake news. It’s fake science, which is just as dangerous.

So don’t let these phony predictions of imminent climate doom made by government bureaucrats frighten you. Be angry instead.

 

Latest Global Warming Lies from US Global Change Research Program. Norman Rogers – “The many scientists that dispute this junk science are ruthlessly attacked and marginalized.” … “The brazenness of the fake science is often shocking.”

 

“Junk science and fake science are not limited to global warming. They are invading many important areas of science. For example, the danger of low level radiation has been exaggerated by persistent use of a model not supported by data. The supposed danger of PM2.5 or small particles, smaller than 2.5 microns, that are suspended in the air, has been exaggerated without good evidence. The danger of DDT was exaggerated with the result that millions of children were killed by malaria. In each case there are special interests that profit from spreading junk science. Stories predicting disaster sell and the science establishment is selling.

The corruption of science has its roots in the political funding of science by the federal government. Somehow we have to make it less profitable for scientists to make up science. Peer review is a joke and doesn’t work. Certainly it would help if the public and the media were skeptical about any scientific theory that predicts a disaster unless we do what the scientists and their allies want us to do.

 

Why climate litigation is out of place. Donald J. Kochan – “we should be sensible when deciding what branches of government should navigate the heated debate.”

 

“Nevertheless, a recent nationwide strategy has looked to unelected judges and juries to craft climate policy. What might be called “the judicial strategy” started in 2015, with states like New York and Massachusetts beginning “civil investigative demand” inquiries into energy companies. And these efforts reached new heights recently when Acting New York AG Barbara Underwood filed a civil suit against ExxonMobil claiming it defrauded shareholders by supposedly hiding knowledge of climate change impacts through accounting practices that are not all that unusual across myriad industries.

 

Sierra Club joins Big Wind Bullies at Apex, Diminishing our Environment. Mkbarton – “Never forget, it was a brave representative of the Los Angeles chapter of the Sierra Club, Bob Hattoy, who coined the term “the Cuisinarts of the air” in a late 1980s battle against a wind project in Gorman, California.”

 

“Today’s Sierra Club has strayed so far from Muir’s original mission of protecting life and our natural environment it is unbelievable. We are greatly saddened to see the Sierra Club (a group many of us used to support) now lobbying for the destruction of vast swaths of rural America with industrial wind sprawl, while also shamelessly advocating for abortion and other far-left ideologies that have nothing to do with protecting the environment.

 

Exposed: A Key Element of the Wind Energy Fraud. John Hinderaker – “When it comes to energy, you cannot get reliable information from “mainstream” sources or from the government. “Green” energy investors like Tom Steyer have gamed the system, and whoever pays electric bills–i.e., everyone else–is the sucker in their game.”

Andrea Mitchell of MSNBC wins the prize for the stupidest comment on the border assault. Thomas Lifson – “There is a lot of competition, but one Trump-hater stands out for utter, implausible, easily-refuted inanity in attempting to demonize opposition to the organized attempt to force our southern border open to anyone who wants to come here and sign up for the rich subsidies and benefits offered to poor people.”

 

Jim Acosta’s lecturing of President Trump about harmlessness of caravan requires an apology. Thomas Lifson – “for his inaccurate contentions about the harmlessness of the caravan and his prediction that they wouldn’t storm the border. He should have heeded Yogi Berra, who warned, “It’s tough to make predictions, especially about the future.” … Twitter is full of humor at Acosta’s expense

 

Secretary Nielsen reports. Scott Johnson – “an update on what occurred and attempt to dispel many of the rumors and much of the misinformation circulating.”

 

“First, the violence we saw at the border was entirely predictable. This caravan, unlike previous caravans, had already entered #Mexico violently and attacked border police in two other countries. I refuse to believe that anyone honestly maintains that attacking law enforcement with rocks and projectiles is acceptable. It is shocking that I have to explain this, but officers can be seriously or fatally injured in such attacks. Self-defense isn’t debatable for most law-abiding Americans.

 

At the border: dealing with the invasion that isn’t an invasion. Neo – “The bad news (although it’s not news in the sense that it’s certainly not new): the US left (which now has come to include most Democrats, it seems) finds this outrageous. The tear gas, that is.” All of a sudden, SOP under Obama is now reason for outrage.

 

“The mob that stormed the border was not a Children’s Crusade; it consisted predominantly of young men. There were some children and women in it as well, however, a leaf out of the Palestinian book of putting children in harm’s way in order to get some good photo ops and play on the sympathies of the left in the country trying to protect its border. Tear gas is a miserable experience, but its time-honored use is to disperse crowds without the use of more permanently harmful means of crowd control.

The entire approach is a sort of left-handed (and leftist-generated) compliment to the people of the country it is used against. The more brutal the country really is, the less likely the opposing force is likely to use it, because truly brutal countries have no qualms whatsoever about using the deadliest of forces against anyone—including children—who would invade it, storm it, or otherwise harm it.

 

Why We Hate the Media, Chapter 12,186. Steven Hayward – “As if we need any more reason to distrust media bias, this juxtaposition says it all:” It’s the NYT from January and November. Fake News is not just False News.

 

Watergate revisited. Scott Johnson – “For those of us who lived through the days of Watergate, the Mueller Switch Project makes us feel young again. It is easy to forget, however, how little we know even to this day about the facts underlying the Watergate scandal.” Alinsky’s rules could make an interesting counterpoint.

Jack Shafer: the conservative revolt against twitter.Wake me up when this sad little uprising is over.” … Or as Ben Domenech wrote last night in a multipart tweet “Jack Shafer’s piece unintentionally illustrates why his suggestion for conservatives on Twitter utterly misses the point.”. Stephen Green picks up on this bit of misdirection at Instapundit. – “My take is that Shafer was in such a hurry to condemn Glenn’s self-removal from Twitter as “sad,” that he missed the real story. … Or if you’d like an even shorter take on Shafer’s latest for Politico: Fake news.”

 

 

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Credibility and false witness don’t share mindspace

The Enemy of the People’. Andrew C. McCarthy – “The president’s “fake news” and “the enemy of the people” epithets are best understood as a reiteration of these longstanding complaints in the barbed Trump style.” Here is an epic struggle with cognitive dissonance. Consider the assertion “a president would be impeached before a journalist spends an hour in prison for unflattering coverage.” But this wasn’t the result when it happened under the previous administration. Like the issue of politically tainted judges, an important issue is highlighted by stating the obvious. Too many have entirely too much of a struggle dealing with it and want the statement ‘toned down’ or said in a less blunt way. They end up mouthing overdone narratives like Trump Lies in a way that echoes their objections to how Trump’s Truths are expressed.

The Media’s Credibility Is Dead. R.C. Maxwell – examples given and explained …

“To be fair, anyone regardless of race or social class can be guilty of problematic views, but to tie me to white supremacy as a means to score points off an event that conflicts with one’s worldview is to abuse one’s position a journalist and continue the trend of dishonesty in the media. RWW may not be the most respected media outlet in the country, but it ranks on Google and has been spoken highly of by respected media outlets such as The Washington Post and the New York Times.

The Right Wing Watch article that calls me, the director of Arizona’s Black Conservative Federation, a white supremacist is still up. So is the Daily Beast article and image that attempt to link Posobiec to Richard Spencer and two neo-Nazi brothers arrested in a violent plot. These are just two trespasses of many that the media will continue to get away with.

When it comes to undermining faith in democracy, another low point. Byron York – “For more than two years, voters have heard Democrats accuse Republicans of trying to undermine confidence in the American democratic system.” But consider the Georgia case.

California Burning: How the Greens Turned the Golden State Brown. Edward Ring – “Opinions vary regarding how much of this disaster could have been avoided, but nobody disputes that more could have been done.”

“For decades,” Grimes notes, “traditional forest management was scientific and successful—that is until ideological, preservationist zealots wormed their way into government and began the overhaul of sound federal forest management through abuse of the Endangered Species Act and the ‘re-wilding, no-use movement.’”

But neither outcome is likely, and the reason should come as no surprise—we are asked to believe that it’s not observable failures in policy and leadership that caused all this destruction and death, it’s “man-made climate change.”

Expect tepid progress on new preventive measures, in a state so mired in regulations and litigation that for every dollar spent paying heavy equipment operators and loggers to do real work, twice that much or more will go to pay consultants, attorneys, and public bureaucrats. Expect “climate change” to be used as a pretext for more “smart growth,” which translates into “stack and pack,” whereby people will be herded out of rural areas through punishing financial disincentives and forced into densely populated urban areas, where they can join the scores of thousands of refugees that California is welcoming from all over the world.

Never forget, according to the conventional wisdom as prescribed by California’s elites, if you don’t like it, you are a climate change “denier,” a “xenophobe,” and a “racist.”

This is the issue that underlies the California wildfires, what causes them and what to do about them. What is a “sustainable” civilization? One that embraces human settlements, has faith in human ingenuity, and aspires to make all humans prosperous enough to care about the environment, everywhere? Or one that demands Draconian limits on human settlement, with no expectation that innovation can provide solutions we can’t currently imagine, and condemns humans to police-state rationing of everything we produce and consume?

That is the stark choice that underlies the current consensus of California’s elites, backed up by dangerous and growing cadres of fanatical militants.

Friday’s required federal climate report is just another example of the Californication of government.

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Will we find what has been lost?

On Thanksgiving, I’m Thankful For Trump. Bruce Bawer – “Finally, a president who isn’t a turkey.”

“I’ve been of voting age in eleven presidential elections. I voted in most but not all of them. Usually both choices were uninspiring. Whom to pick, a dimbulb D.C. drudge (Ford) or a smarmy phony (Carter)? A charmless technocrat (Dukakis) or an establishment empty suit (Bush senior)? In 1992 I bought Slick Willie’s act; the disillusion set in almost immediately after his inauguration. Bush junior and Obama were the two worst presidents since Wilson, but the men who ran against them weren’t world-beaters either. Even the one great president of my lifetime prior to 2016, Ronald Reagan, fell way short of carrying out the sweeping small-government reforms he’d pledged.

Past experience, of course, had taught me not to put too much stock in anything a politician says. But Trump was no politician. He wasn’t the front man for a bunch of rich guys or the mouthpiece for a staff full of policy wonks. He wasn’t scripted. He wasn’t focus-grouped. He wasn’t a mannequin projecting sham humility and offering up fake compliments to the hoi polloi. Yes, Obama had been a rousing orator, but he’d always been reading spiels written for him by a speechwriter. Trump was connecting with ordinary Americans in long, tireless, and patently sincere stream-of-consciousness monologues some of which were, frankly, tours de force. He was palpably having fun with it and actually enjoying the human contact.

This guy was talking in real language to real people about the things that really mattered to them and that he himself had been thinking seriously about for decades.

The answer: wow. So far, the results have exceeded all of my expectations. The border wall aside, Donald J. Trump has actually kept his promises, and then some. He’s done one good, gutsy thing after another.

U.K. Media: British Intelligence Heads Worried President Trump Will Discover Their Involvement in “Spygate”. Sundance – “An article published originally in the U.K. Telegraph, and republished via Yahoo News outlines growing fear within the U.K. government and British intelligence officers surrounding President Trump discovering how far they were involved within “Spygate”.

“The facts are not uncommon to anyone who has done research into the events of 2015 and 2016; however, the interesting aspect surrounds the current level of anxiety which indicates something is soon to become very public.

The central concern of the British officials surrounds President Trump declassifying evidence that will outline a coordinated effort by a weaponized U.S. intelligence apparatus to use their foreign counterparts for two aspects

Out: Russia. In: Saudi Arabia. Thomas Lifson – “The progressive narrative of President Trump as evil never changes, but the argument keeps changing.”

“Since Trump must be a pawn of nefarious foreigners (except when he is a dangerous nationalist, heedless of our obligations to other nations), we now have hysterical accusations that he is instead a pawn of Saudi Arabia, because he insists on maintaining the strategic relationship with that Arab absolute monarchy.

Yesterday, Democrat Representative Tulsi Gabbard, using vulgar language, accused the POTUS of being a Saudi agent, which would be treasonous

Barack Melts Down. John Hinderaker – “This is the central conceit of liberalism: we know how to solve the world’s problems–socialism!–but those pesky conservatives just won’t go along and make it unanimous.”

“The truth is the opposite: policy debates rage across a broad range of issues, and conservatives usually win them.

But, like a dead frog whose legs continue to kick, clueless liberals like Barack Obama parrot the pro-government line, not because it makes any scientific sense, but because it supports their statist desires.

Which brings us to the rest of Obama’s riff: Americans are “confused, blind, shrouded with hate, anger, racism, mommy issues.” This is more or less insane

We have entered a new era in American politics, and, make no mistake, it is the Democrats who have ushered in the juvenile, no-holds-barred epoch in which we live. Barack Obama should be condemned for the part he plays in debasing American political discourse.

Or consider Juan Williams on The Five in a dialog about civility over dinner. His answer was to dig out the trivia he uses to support Trump hatred as conversation topics where all could agree. It is amazing what he puts on the pedestals in his mind … but also rather telling. Instapundit on this: Leftists’ Fear/Hatred Of Their Families, as exemplified by leftist media all over explains a lot about their politics. Another insight is Stop pretending you don’t love Thanksgiving. Bridget Phetasy – “You get to tell your whole family that they’re fascists.” Mr. Williams, are you listening and can you tell satire directed at you when it is in your face?

“Obama judges”? Pretty much. Paul Mirengoff – “I like and respect Chief Justice Roberts, but I disagree with him.” This is the polite disagreement. For something more extensive and stronger, see Fischer’s comments following this citation. Keep in mind that the problem with a judicial oligarchy was a significant Trump campaign issue. The Chief Justice stepped in it …

“The questions of whether it matters who appointed a federal judge and whether such judges view litigants, including President Trump, with equal regard in any meaningful sense are empirical ones. If one can predict with a high degree of accuracy how a judge will rule in a highly controversial case, or in a case challenging a Trump edict the left doesn’t like, just by knowing which president appointed that judge, then Roberts’ defense of the federal judiciary fails.

I practiced law without appearing more than a handful of times before Obama-appointed judges. But even in the pre-Obama era, I could predict with a high degree of accuracy the way federal appellate court judges would vote in cases involving controversial, politicized subject matter

Chief Justice Roberts is right that we have an independent judiciary in the sense that no one can tell judges how to rule. He is also right that we should be thankful for this.

But we also have a judiciary in which federal judges very often decide controversial cases based on policy preferences and partisan considerations. No president has told them how to vote, but presidents have selected them based on which ideological side they are likely to uphold, and, especially in the case of Democratic presidents, the judges rarely disappoint.

Of Course We Have Obama Judges and Trump Judges, Clinton Judges and Bush Judges. Dov Fischer – “As the Left makes a mockery of the lower Federal Courts that we need to honor.”

“Impartial justice is central to life’s core values. The very notion is engraved into our Constitution, and our Founding Fathers even took steps to preserve judicial impartiality by guaranteeing federal judges lifetime tenure so that they never would fear personal ramifications of issuing unpopular decisions they believe justice demands.

One easily can read between the lines of a frustrated and perplexed Chief Justice John Roberts when he now desperately claims, with patent nonsense and perhaps even a dry sense of humor, that “we do not have Obama judges or Trump judges, Bush judges or Clinton judges.” Of course we do! The ACLU knows that we do. Roberts knows that we do. Everyone knows that. The radical “Progressive” cabal of Democrats and their Left Media stooges know it. Heck, the Obama and Clinton judges know it. Why did The Resistance go to war trying to destroy Clarence Thomas and Brett Kavanaugh? Why does the ACLU always run to the Ninth Circuit, up and down the West Coast, instead of seeking justice from a conservative appellate circuit in the Deep South? … But Roberts knows his denial is stuff and nonsense, and that it sounds ridiculous — even borderline delusional — to deny that today’s federal judiciary is chock-full of Obama judges and Clinton judges on a mission to stop President Trump’s agenda.

The system makes a mockery of the courts, as Chief Justice Roberts now desperately realizes. It creates a cynicism towards the rule of law by manipulating and leveraging judges into pawns of Democrat “Progressives.” Even if the liberal judges are trying to rule impartially, the context behind their very selections undermines their authority. People see that the ACLU and its ilk repeatedly run to Democrat-appointed judges under the umbrella of the Ninth and get the results they want. It creates a terrible aura of cynicism that “the fix is in” and that politics is ruling, not blind justice.

In so many ways, President Trump has reversed so much of Obama’s eight years, leaving so much as if Obama never were there. We are out of the nonsensical Paris Climate travesty, out of the Iran Deal, out of the bad NAFTA. Regulations have been reversed in grand style. The individual mandate is gone. Tax policy changed. The IRS is honest and no longer weaponized against political opponents. The Left media are exposed. The unemployed have returned to work. Food stamps no longer are a religious sacrament. College students falsely accused of rape now may defend themselves. There will be control of the southern border. Cuba and Venezuela no longer are our best two friends in the world, and Israel no longer is our worst pain. ISIS no longer rules half of Syria, and Putin has stopped expanding into his neighboring countries. NATO is paying some bills. For two years we have been spared Trayvon Martin dramas and the scene of cities burning like Ferguson (Michael Brown, “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot!” — never happened and no indictments) and Baltimore (Freddy Gray, all accused officers acquitted). We have closed down the PLO office in Washington, no longer are supporting terrorism by funding the UNRWA in Gaza, walked out of the terrorist-enriched UN Human Rights Council, moved America’s Israel embassy to Jerusalem, and voted against the annual UN resolution against Israel in the Golan Heights. White House visitor invitations are extended to patriots, not to people who sing lyrics extolling cop-killing, and overpaid fools who are given millions of dollars to throw or run with a ball are denounced when they disrespect our flag and national anthem.

It increasingly falls on the President to focus on making the lower and mid-level federal courts every bit as Constitutionally faithful as he has worked to make the Supreme Court. The way he marks the federal bench these next two years will play a major role in bench-marking his place in history. And if he succeeds, he might even improve Chief Justice Roberts’s place in history by creating a more balanced court that places the law and objective fidelity to the Constitution above Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals.

Instapundit – “If judges are as neutral and apolitical as Roberts pretends, then why so much sturm und drang over judicial appointments?”

“Two thoughts. First, in talking about “Obama judges,” Trump was merely echoing the common media trope that identifies judges in controversial cases based on who appointed them. …

Second, Roberts is in a particularly poor place to talk about apolitical judging after his transparent capitulation to the Obama Administration’s campaign of media bullying during the pendency of the ObamaCare case. He reversed his position in response to political pressure from an administration that was, at the time, a party to the case. He has no high horse to sit on.

UPDATE: Chuck Grassley to Chief Justice John Roberts: You Rebuked Trump — but Sat Silent Through Obama’s Abuse. The increased feistiness of people like Grassley and Orrin Hatch post-Kavanaugh has been an amazing thing to behold.

Living on the Edge. James B. Meigs – “Just as coastal communities must learn to live with hurricanes, communities that edge up against forests are going to have to learn to live with fire.” On Slate of all places, but there is the expected dig at Trump where the wildfire is dismissed as a factor so Trump’s comments about management can, obviously, be dissed. Like the note about Williams above, supporting hatred can require a lot of pickin’ and choosin’ and other denial of reality. But let’s look for the part of the commentary that does tell about what actually happened and how it could be addressed.

“if you look closely at photos and video of the aftermath, you’ll notice something surprising. The buildings are gone, but most of the trees are still standing—many with their leaves or needles intact.

Within Paradise itself, the main fuel feeding the fire wasn’t trees, nor the underbrush Trump suggested should have been raked up. It was buildings. The forest fire became an infrastructure fire. … The town of Paradise didn’t just experience a fast-moving wildfire, its own layout, building designs, and city management turned that fire into something even scarier.

like almost every disaster that kills large numbers of people and damages communities, the causes of the tragedy in Paradise are more complex than it first appears.

A number of environmental, political, and economic trends converged in Butte County in just a few hours on Nov. 8 to spark this fire. But the tragedy was the result of many longer-term decisions, decades in the making.

So, California’s fire country faces a double-barreled threat: More lives and infrastructure lie in the path of potential fires than ever before. And the fires are getting bigger. That combination explains why 6 out of the 10 most destructive fires in California history have occurred in the past three years.

The question is how to provide the right incentives for people so that we limit the chances of this happening again. Looking ahead, “We need to ensure that prospective homeowners can make informed decisions about the risks they face in the WUI,” Moritz, Tague, and Anderson say.

What else can be done? Building and zoning codes can be changed to make towns less fire prone. Homes that are built or retrofitted with fireproof materials—and landscaped to keep shrubbery away from structures—can usually survive typical wildfires. In new developments, homes can be clustered and surrounded by fire-resistant buffer zones, such as orchards. And, no matter how well designed, communities in fire zones need realistic evacuation plans and better emergency communications.

If global warming models hold true, fire seasons are going to be hotter and last longer. Just as people in coastal areas need to adapt to hurricanes, residents of fire country need to learn to live with fire.

Can’t forget “global warming” despite no evidence it exists much less aggravates disasters. It is worth noting the comparison to coastal areas where the dilemma has always existed about whether the build disposable structures or bunkers as reliance on insurance and government for recovery has about run its course. A great attraction for being a ‘beach bum’ or forest camper is a pleasant environment with a low cost of living – until the next hurricane or forest fire. Easy living: cheap, avoid maintenance and preparedness costs, take it as it comes …

California is struggling with the other source of compensation, the big pockets power company. It is the electrical grid bouncing in the wind that sparked some of these fires and is an easy target for culpability. Since the state is so gung-ho on renewable energy and solar panels, perhaps they should just make any electric power infrastructure crossing these forests illegal?

To understand the fire, Neo cites The Camp fire burned homes but left trees standing. The science behind the fire’s path. Thomas Curwen and Joseph Serna – “Gray smoke meant vegetation. Black smoke meant homes, possibly entire city blocks. The Camp fire was no longer just a wildland fire.”

“It was an urban conflagration,” Pangburn said. “It was structure-to-structure-to-structure ignition that carried the fire through this community.” … what Pangburn realized is that the Camp fire had changed its character upon entering the town — and in that revelation lay the hope for preventing tragedies such as this from happening again.

Most telling were the trees. Most of the pines that sheltered this community still had their canopies intact. The needles, yellowed from the intense heat, were not burned — evidence that the winds that morning had pushed the fire along so fast it never had a chance to rise into the trees. But as a surface fire, it lit up the homes that lay in its path.

Drawing lessons from tragedy is never easy, especially when those lessons have been known for years.

“Our problem is a society that is unintentionally, but actively, ignoring opportunities because of the cultural perception of wildfire,” said Jack Cohen, who is retired from the U.S. Forest Service where he worked for 40 years as a fire research scientist.

That perception, he argues, is based on myth and fear and complicated by an ongoing narrative that attributes conflagrations like the Camp fire to such factors as climate change, overgrown forests and urban encroachment into rural areas.

The first step, Cohen said, is to address the misinformation about wildland fires.

“When we look at the big flames but not the firebrands, we miss the principal igniter and pay attention to the show,” Cohen said.

Billions of these embers fly into neighborhoods, landing onto flammable roofs, into vegetation around the structure and rain gutters choked with leaves and needles.

We don’t have to live in ammo bunkers, Cohen said, and we don’t have to entirely eliminate fire from within the perimeter, just ensure that fires that occur within 100 feet don’t burn long enough or intensely enough to ignite other objects.

If Paradise and the other communities destroyed by the Camp fire are to be rebuilt, then the conversation must address the role that neighbors play collectively in protecting themselves and their environment.

Keys to Democratic success. Neo – “I continue to be surprised at how many people seem to think the direction in which the Democratic Party is going now is just peachy keen.”

“The first reason states the positives of what the Democrats offer: they promise “free” stuff to people who really do need it or who feel they need it. …

The second reason states the negatives of what Democrats say Republicans offer: racism and bigotry. The left has successfully managed to brand the right, even the moderate right—in fact, any Republican …

The actual consequences of a given policy in the real world, and the fact that most people in both parties want the common good and just have different ideas about methods to achieve it, has gotten lost.

Not a Hollywood Horror Story: Actor Loves Making Hallmark Movies. Jacob Comello – “Polhala admits that he was reluctant at first to do any work for Hallmark, whose channels have traditionally been the haunt of senior citizens and the families of their grandchildren.

“Hollywood has become synonymous with cynicism, entitlement, hypocrisy and group think. Its products and its people seem to be in a race to the bottom.
… 
Polhala mentions that his Hallmark films are by far the ones that get him the most notoriety nowadays, and don’t sacrifice family-friendliness to get him there. He relates that “… I am leaning into Hallmark because it’s fun to sit with my 7-year-old and show him what I do for a living … I’m leaning in because my 91-year-old Nana finally thinks I’ve made it in Hollywood because I’m on Hallmark.”

Polaha concludes with “… if you haven’t indulged yet, perhaps this is your year to go where the love is.” Sage advice.

So much has become lost. Perhaps some are re-discovering to find it anew.

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Metacognition is missing?

Why People Deny Science. Steven Novella – “A new study further shows that people are inconsistent in how they justify their beliefs.” They key flag here is they use of “Deny” as it is used as a perjorative for those who don’t toe the ideological line. That suggests a diversion. Science denial is being substituted for the broader concepts in psychology concerning how humans deal with a reality they have difficulty accepting. This is about such topics as cognitive dissonance and grief. If that bias and diversion, which is its own example of the problems being discussed, is understood then the column’s insights gain good value.

What all of this suggests is that people do not usually engage in metacognition – thinking about their own thinking. They may have a cognitive style that they tend to use, but otherwise they engage in whatever type of reasoning serves their purpose on any particular topic. …

To counter this we cannot just teach science or explain what the evidence says. We need to teach critical thinking skills – which is metacognition. Critical thinking includes an understanding of all the various ways our thinking can go wrong. Just as important, however, is that critical thinking involves stepping back from our own cognitive process to examine it objectively, to make a sincere effort to consistently apply valid logic and the same fair and objective criteria for evidence.

Doing this is really hard, because people are very good at motivated reasoning. We are extremely creative at inventing reasons to reject logic and evidence we don’t like, and those invented reasons can create a powerful illusion of being correct – so much so that almost half of people feel comfortable saying that no new evidence could even theoretically change their mind on a topic.

The Present American Revolution. Victor Davis Hanson – “Destroying the Constitution and seeking state-mandated equality of result

“Our present revolution is more multifaceted. It is a war on the very Constitution of the United States that has not yet brought the Left its Holy Grail: a state-mandated equality of result overseen by an omnipotent and omniscient elite. The problem for today’s leftists is that they are not fighting Bourbon France, a reactionary Europe of 1848, or Czarist Russia, but an affluent, culturally uninhibited, and wildly free United States, where never in the history of civilization has a people attained such affluence and leisure.

The courts have become revolutionary. They now routinely overturn popular referenda, presidential executive orders, and legislative statutes, mostly on the principle that better-educated, more moral and experienced judges answer to a higher, more progressive calling and know what in the long run is best for the uneducated rabble.

Almost everything we have seen in just the last three months — the Kavanaugh chaos, the “caravan,” the ongoing Mueller octopus, recounting election results until they are deemed “correct,” the Beto and Gillum neo-socialism craziness, the swarming of a Fox News anchor’s home, driving public officials out of restaurants, the media circus at presidential press conferences — are symptoms of revolutionary America. In this conflict, one side believes it is not only not fair but also not allowable that it lacks the necessary power to make us all equal — but equal only in the eyes of a self-anointed elite.

Thinking about their own thinking?

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No civility unless we win – everything.

So Much For The Afterglow. Derek Hunter – “We were told that civility would return once Democrats regained the House of Representatives. In fact, we were told that was the only way civility would return to a world of angry liberal mobs assaulting and shouting down anyone who dare not agree with them. We were lied to.”

“Being lied to by liberals is not a surprise. What is a little surprising is how quickly, boldly, and proudly they broke their word as if no one would remember the promise.

After winning the House, as expected, Democrats immediately turned the thermostat up to 11 by promising to investigate everything Donald Trump ever did. His high school girlfriends should be expecting a subpoena.

In the name of civility, Democrats openly spoke about going after the President’s tax returns and business records.

Democrats aren’t even going to pretend their word is worth more than a pile of soiled diapers anymore, Republicans need to get this through their heads and act accordingly.

Civility isn’t coming back until incivility stops working. Liberals learned Tuesday that there are very few consequences for bad actions. Since then it’s been a stream of even more – thwarting of state election law in Florida, ballots being “discovered” in strange places, more cries of racism when things don’t go their way.

It’s Not Quite Kristallnacht, but It’s Not The Fourth of July Either. Clarice Feldman – “DC police did nothing to these modern-day brownshirts.”

“Just days before the eightieth anniversary of Kristallnacht, when Nazis burned synagogues, looted Jewish homes and shops, and rounded up Jewish families for concentration camps, Tucker Carlson’s home was surrounded by Antifa thugs who pounded on his door (cracking it), terrifying his wife, uttered threats against him and his family and painted an anarchist symbol on his driveway

In several places in Arizona, Georgia, and Florida — most obviously in Broward and Palm Beach — Florida, election workers are racing to undo the results of a free election, undermining the very basis of our political system. And they are thumbing their noses at judicial efforts to halt the theft.

Trump Is Blessed with His Enemies. Conrad Black – “Now it is easy to see the disconcertion of the Democrats at their failure to derail Trump.”

“What was left of the pretense that he was somehow not a legitimate president has been shredded, and what the Democrats have taken as their inviolable extra-constitutional right to keep the president’s hands tied while the Mueller-Inspector Clouseau charade carries on into its third year, has been debunked. The silent eunuch attorney general, Jeff Sessions, has finally gone. And now the Justice Department will have the ability to discomfit the Democrats who misrepresented the Steele dossier, used it to obtain false FISA warrants, and who lied to Congress under oath, or to federal officials. This prestigious group appears to include Hillary Clinton, agency chiefs John Brennan, James Clapper, and James Comey, and former Attorney General Loretta Lynch. They are all vulnerable to grand jury indictments.

It is clear that in their distaste for Trump and overconfidence of a Clinton victory, the FBI, CIA, NIA, and Justice department all crossed the double-white line into improper activity, confident that President Hillary Clinton would sweep it under the White House rug. More important than vengeance on the wrongdoers is institutional reform and safeguards to prevent a recurrence.

God And Guns In The Synagogue. Daniel Greenfield – “Jews across America choose between self-defense and gun control.”

“There are two types of synagogues: those that believe in G-d and those that believe in government.

After the mass shooting in a Pittsburgh synagogue, the government synagogues turned to the government with calls for gun control. And those that believe in G-d, turned to the Almighty.

And then, trusting in the Almighty to stand with them against danger, they went out and got their guns.

The choice between self-defense and gun control is at also a choice between dependency and independence. It’s the quintessential dilemma out of which the United States of America was born.

The thing is, “gun control” means laws centered on tools used for self defense as well as for assault. It does not mean gun control. Actual control of human behavior is not within the scope of government. The mob rule ethos evident is today’s political activity should make that clear.

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Modern-day Robespierres

Investor’s Business Daily has two of note today. Midterm Elections: 5 States Could Wreck Their Economies In Futile Fight Against ‘Climate Change’ – “Next week, voters in five states will decide whether they want to raise their own taxes, kill jobs and lower their standards of living.” Memo To Midterm Voters: It’s Democrats, Not Republicans, Who Are The Extremists Today – “But look at the data, and you see that it’s Democrats who are increasingly well outside the mainstream.”

The Electronic Committee of Public Safety. Victor Davis Hanson – “

Investor’s Business Daily has two of note today. Midterm Elections: 5 States Could Wreck Their Economies In Futile Fight Against ‘Climate Change’ – “Next week, voters in five states will decide whether they want to raise their own taxes, kill jobs and lower their standards of living.” Memo To Midterm Voters: It’s Democrats, Not Republicans, Who Are The Extremists Today – “But look at the data, and you see that it’s Democrats who are increasingly well outside the mainstream.”

The Electronic Committee of Public Safety. Victor Davis Hanson – “Modern-day Robespierres send counterrevolutionaries to the virtual chopping block. They should recall his fate.” Megyn Kelly provides the example.

“Millions of Internet sleuth volunteers play the 18th-century role of the shouting mob in the street, as they google the condemned person’s name in search of a prior quote from YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, or any random outlet that can prove a “pattern” of incorrect expression or counterrevolutionary behavior.

We now fear the lethal wrath of the Internet’s Committee of Public Safety. But beware of fickle revolutionary temperament. Soon our 21st-century Robespierres may become so promiscuous and obnoxious in their beheading that they wear out even the mob — and find themselves next in line on a counterrevolutionary chopping block.

Is It ‘Hate Speech’ to Tell the Truth? Robert Stacy Mccain – “It is not yet illegal to tell the truth, however, and Republicans trying to prevent a Democrat takeover of Congress are telling the truth while it’s still legal.”

“Two days ago, CNN’s Jim Acosta wrote on Twitter: “We are not the enemy of the people. I am not your enemy. You are not my enemy. It is wrong to call your fellow Americans the enemy. We are all on the same team. We are all Americans.” This was a lie, of course. If you vote Republican, you’re not on “the same team” as CNN. They consider you their enemy, because you refuse to acknowledge their authority to tell you what to think and how to vote. This is the real “hate” problem in America — the media elite’s hatred of anyone who disagrees with them.

Lemon: Stop demonizing people. Also, white men are the biggest terror threat. Ed Morrissey – “It’s tough to know which is funnier: Lemon’s smugness as he delivers this rhetorical whiplash, Chris Cuomo’s hostage-tape face, or the “FACTS FIRST” chyron that displays through the whole pathetic rant.”

“The larger problem is our societal obsession on immutable characteristics as determinative rather than character. Not only have we not progressed past race and ethnicity, we practically wallow in it. We’re obsessed with ethnic identity as a marker of authenticity; we get DNA tests to claim it, we incentivize it through public policies that were intended to redress undeniable oppression and disadvantage. This obsession does nothing but divide people up into tribes rather than bring them together into communities. Lemon’s formula here duplicates that of other bigoted fringe groups; he’s only choosing more socially acceptable targets. The best option for this game is not to play.

New liberal line: Don’t blame Trump. Blame all Republicans. Jazz Shaw – “According to Catherine Rampell at the Washington Post, we now live in a “poisonous, increasingly violent political atmosphere.”

“The usual pattern on cable news is for the various hosts to begin by saying, “I’m not saying this is directly President Trump’s fault, but…” before going on to explain why it’s totally President Trump’s fault. Rampell, however, offers a refreshingly different take on the subject. She insists that you actually shouldn’t blame Donald Trump. You should blame the entire Republican Party.

If this is what passes for political analysis at the Washington Post these days, there are places that require more housecleaning than the GOP. You can’t make everything “racist” by using terms like dog whistle every time someone expresses an opinion you don’t care for.

Revoking birthright citizenship would enforce the Constitution. John Eastman – “President Trump’s comments are not even set to air until this weekend, but already they have created a firestorm of commentary, most of it ill-informed.” In this case, it is about a caveat in the 14th amendment and what it means. send counterrevolutionaries to the virtual chopping block. They should recall his fate.” Megyn Kelly provides the example.

“Millions of Internet sleuth volunteers play the 18th-century role of the shouting mob in the street, as they google the condemned person’s name in search of a prior quote from YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, or any random outlet that can prove a “pattern” of incorrect expression or counterrevolutionary behavior.

We now fear the lethal wrath of the Internet’s Committee of Public Safety. But beware of fickle revolutionary temperament. Soon our 21st-century Robespierres may become so promiscuous and obnoxious in their beheading that they wear out even the mob — and find themselves next in line on a counterrevolutionary chopping block.

Is It ‘Hate Speech’ to Tell the Truth? Robert Stacy Mccain – “It is not yet illegal to tell the truth, however, and Republicans trying to prevent a Democrat takeover of Congress are telling the truth while it’s still legal.”

“Two days ago, CNN’s Jim Acosta wrote on Twitter: “We are not the enemy of the people. I am not your enemy. You are not my enemy. It is wrong to call your fellow Americans the enemy. We are all on the same team. We are all Americans.” This was a lie, of course. If you vote Republican, you’re not on “the same team” as CNN. They consider you their enemy, because you refuse to acknowledge their authority to tell you what to think and how to vote. This is the real “hate” problem in America — the media elite’s hatred of anyone who disagrees with them.

Lemon: Stop demonizing people. Also, white men are the biggest terror threat. Ed Morrissey – “It’s tough to know which is funnier: Lemon’s smugness as he delivers this rhetorical whiplash, Chris Cuomo’s hostage-tape face, or the “FACTS FIRST” chyron that displays through the whole pathetic rant.”

“The larger problem is our societal obsession on immutable characteristics as determinative rather than character. Not only have we not progressed past race and ethnicity, we practically wallow in it. We’re obsessed with ethnic identity as a marker of authenticity; we get DNA tests to claim it, we incentivize it through public policies that were intended to redress undeniable oppression and disadvantage. This obsession does nothing but divide people up into tribes rather than bring them together into communities. Lemon’s formula here duplicates that of other bigoted fringe groups; he’s only choosing more socially acceptable targets. The best option for this game is not to play.

New liberal line: Don’t blame Trump. Blame all Republicans. Jazz Shaw – “According to Catherine Rampell at the Washington Post, we now live in a “poisonous, increasingly violent political atmosphere.”

“The usual pattern on cable news is for the various hosts to begin by saying, “I’m not saying this is directly President Trump’s fault, but…” before going on to explain why it’s totally President Trump’s fault. Rampell, however, offers a refreshingly different take on the subject. She insists that you actually shouldn’t blame Donald Trump. You should blame the entire Republican Party.

If this is what passes for political analysis at the Washington Post these days, there are places that require more housecleaning than the GOP. You can’t make everything “racist” by using terms like dog whistle every time someone expresses an opinion you don’t care for.

Revoking birthright citizenship would enforce the Constitution. John Eastman – “President Trump’s comments are not even set to air until this weekend, but already they have created a firestorm of commentary, most of it ill-informed.” In this case, it is about a caveat in the 14th amendment and what it means.

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The bloom of the ruse withers?

Census Win – Supreme Court Strikes Down Activist New York Court in Census Citizenship Ruling. Sundance – “framing a challenge based on the question being discriminatory- ruled that Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross must submit to a deposition to discover “the motives” of the decision.” A very typical example of assuming guilt and trying to prove it by any means necessary gets a blow but isn’t done yet.

“An appellate circuit panel initially agreed with the lower court and ACLU lawyers. However, U.S. Solicitor General Noel Francisco asked the Supreme Court to stay the circuit court ruling. SCOTUS agreed with the administration and blocked the ridiculous activist lawyers from questioning the cabinet; the supreme court does allow the plaintiffs to question the DOJ civil rights division lawyer.

The challengers are led by New York’s attorney general and left-wing activist groups such as the ACLU. They are claiming that President Trump’s real reason for adding the citizenship question is to reduce the representation of immigrant populations in the census. There is no structural basis for their claim. It is not likely their challenge will succeed on the merits. The case is schedule to go to trial November 5th.

Obama Tells One Whopper Of A Lie. It’s About Lying. Daily Wire – “Speaking in Nevada on Monday, former president Barack Obama uttered what may have been the most pompous, patronizing, and pretentious lie from a politician since Woodrow Wilson” Note that this isn’t a generic ‘he lies’ but rather a specific assertion supported by examples that can be observed.

Wow – The Bloom is Really Off The Ruse. Sundance – “When I watched this earlier today I noticed something was odd; the background sound and the responses from the visible audience don’t align with the visual as presented.”

“Watch. When President Obama is speaking there’s almost no visible reaction; but something more… LISTEN ! There’s almost no audible audience response… it just seems weird.

The media have always covered for the Manchurian lightbringer, so we knew something was off when we first watched the Obama presentation. Thanks to twitter video we now know what that something was … It’s the Obama Potemkin village again; only this time in Nevada.

Then, “Meanwhile in Texas” …. Pictures for comparison and contrast.

The Dems October Surprise May be on Them. William L. Gensert – “If we learned anything from the Kavanaugh smear and the endless Russia collusion investigation, it’s that just as Islam is a political system masquerading as a religion, Democratic Party ideals are a religion masquerading as a political system.”

“It has been said that President Donald Trump is a buffoon, that he is a loudmouth from Queens with little impulse control. But everything Trump does can be seen in a different light if one only bothers to look. Much of what the president says on Twitter and during political rallies can be interpreted as deliberate and designed to control the conversation.

Trump has Democrats playing his game and it’s not a good look for them. David Gelernter wrote in the Wall Street Journal that all the Democrats have is their hatred of Trump and many people may see that as a hatred of the country as well.

Another Reason Why You Got Trump: Feds Draft Plan to Discard Obama’s Transgender Ideology. J.J. Sefton – “And yet for the sake of maybe a few thousand mentally disturbed people, a nation of 315 million or so citizens is supposed to turn society upside down not just to accommodate them, but in fact, to submit to them. And by them, I mean the totalitarian Left.”

Yes, Be Very Worried Over Growing Polarization. Victor Davis Hanson – “Especially worrisome is the recent habit of social scientists and statisticians of claiming near-scientific authority through purported numerical precision.” It is one way that people deceive themselves and that is what leads to divergent outcomes and reason for worry.

“It is now difficult not to witness political sermonizing in popular culture in a fashion not seen in the recent past. The Oscars, Grammys, Hollywood movies, stand-up comedy, and professional sports were never devoid of politics, but they were not perceived as all-political. Such current ideological saturation of entertainment might explain why many of these venues are suffering losses in audiences, of which political weariness may be one contributing cause, and polarization and anger another.

Popular culture can certainly provide a much-needed veneer of commonality in language, fashion, and habit. But without a commitment to shared values, a common agreement on constitutional norms, allegiance to the rule of law, and some deference to collective American traditions and customs, factions that superficially seem similar in their language and habits might devolve into violence of the sort now associated with Antifa or attacks on invited speakers to college campuses (or even on congressional representatives).

The lesson from the American Civil War and the French Revolution, the rise of Nazism in Germany or of Bolshevism in Russia, is not that clear majorities of partisans and countless news junkies are needed to foment extremism and tear apart a country. Instead, it is that zealous and sometimes warring tiny minorities can escalate tensions, nullify opposition, and bully the silenced majority to sanction–or at least not object to–the violence by which they eventually make their illiberal agendas go mainstream.

Dear Resistance, listen to my lived totalitarian experience – you have no effing idea what you’re talking about. Arthur Chrenkoff – “As a straight, white, Christian, right-wing, middle class male of European extraction I get told to shut up a lot.

“you really have no idea, and I mean it with the greatest possible respect. Actually, I don’t. Most of you are supposedly mature, rational adults but you seem to have at best the most superficial knowledge of history and a complete lack of self-awareness, any sense of perspective, and an ability to contextualise. Having spent your lives relatively free of hardship, deprivation and persecution on any remotely comparable scale to people in other, less fortunate corners of the world, you probably get some frisson from believing yourself to be big actors at a critical time in history, the last line of separating civilisation from the descent into new dark ages. You’re free to engage in whatever ideological cosplay you want, but don’t expect others to take you seriously.

HT neo. Instapundit also linked the essay and the resulting storm got this update from Chrenkoff”

“You can very well believe that Trump is a bad president with wrong policies who is damaging American society and America’s international standing, but calling him Hitler or imagining that the United States is months away from a fascist dictatorship simply means I will never take you seriously. It’s stupid, self-indulgent and arguably insulting to the tens of millions of people around the world who have actually experienced real dictatorships and lack of freedom. It doesn’t insult me personally, as I’m not a sensitive type, but it simply makes me pity you for your pathetic need to cloak yourself with the rhetoric and symbols of historical martyrdom and heroism. Grow up and engage in politics like a rational adult.

Many examples of what he is talking about receive comments here.

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Wolves or cannibals?

Resurrecting the Jonestown Dead. Daniel J. Flynn – “Once historians settled on the facts, and agreed that a group that taught Russian to its members, issued to socialism examinations, and willed millions of dollars to the Soviet Union did not mesh well with the Bible thumper label, chroniclers shifted from obscuring the facts to offering unusual interpretations of them.”

““Unfortunately, the laudable aspects of Peoples Temple have been forgotten in the horrifying wake of Jonestown,” Julia Scheeres writes in A Thousand Lives. She posits, “If anything, the people who moved to Jonestown should be remembered as noble idealists. They wanted to create a better, more equitable, society. They wanted their kids to be free of violence and racism. They rejected sexist gender roles. They believed in a dream.”

Most people who wake up in a nightmare do.

Jonestown offers lessons if we listen. It occurred, as I write in Cult City, as a cautionary tale about ends rationalizing means, heaven on earth inevitably yielding to a less comfortable place, the profound wrongs people imagining themselves as right can commit, and outsourcing thinking to an ideology or guru. Not a factor mitigating their evil, socialism helped bring it about.

Jim Jones, who boasted of making the dead walk again, proved incapable of resurrecting his flock. Various revisionist histories prove impotent in this task, too.

End could be near for House investigation of Trump-Russia investigators. Byron York – “Among the things Americans know about the conduct of the Trump-Russia probe that they would not have known had Nunes and his colleagues not tackled the subject:

“Nunes and his colleagues learned these things, and told the public about them, over the determined opposition of the FBI, the Justice Department, and Democrats, both on the Intelligence Committee and in the larger House.

In fact, it would not be an overstatement to say the FBI and Justice Department fiercely resisted the investigation. They withheld materials, dragged their feet, and flat-out refused to provide information to which congressional overseers were clearly entitled. Sometimes disputes were settled by the intervention of House Speaker Paul Ryan on Nunes’ behalf. Sometimes they weren’t.

If they win, Democrats will of course be fully entitled to investigate what they want; that’s part of what is meant when it is said that elections have consequences.

But the work of Nunes and his fellow Republicans has been enormously valuable. When all the investigators, and the politicians, and the press were looking in one direction, Nunes looked in another — and found important information. That is not to say the other investigations were not important, too. But Nunes showed Americans something they needed to see. And if his work as chairman ends with the next election, it has still been an indispensable contribution.

Wolves in Wolves’ Clothing. Victor Davis Hanson – “although many Democrats in Trump states still dance the old bipartisan two-step, lots of blinkered progressive wolves don’t even bother to put on the sheep’s clothing.”

“As the economy kept booming and things overseas calmed down, the Democrats found it harder to run a campaign strictly against either the ogre or the incompetent Trump. So they stayed on the offensive and did not bother to hide their agendas of open borders, “Medicare for All,” abolishing ICE, identity politics quotas, radical feminism, abortion on demand, and climate change hysterias. And they were quite lupine in their sincerity even as the public insidiously began to tune them out.

But give progressive wolves credit. Unlike liberals, they are as they talk and act. They are at least proud of their agendas of remaking America in their own image—and in the last few weeks that image is appearing a veritable nightmare.

Here’s why Hillary Clinton losing her security clearance matters for the rest of us. Frank Miniter – “The mainstream media is treating the loss of these clearances as a move by Clinton to avoid a political snub by the Trump administration.”

“Treating this security issue in such a purely political manner misses a growing problem that the media is purposely trying to ignore, as an honest analysis of it doesn’t help their attacks on the current administration.

But this lax security is not simply a political story. It puts every one of us in jeopardy.

By overlooking and explaining away how Hillary Clinton treated government data, including classified information, and then covering up what Imran Awan allegedly did for years in the House, the mainstream media has done a massive disservice to the state of our democracy. Light needs to be shined on Congress and on anyone who abuses the safeguards of our system so that reforms can take place.

Growing Invasion Force Overwhelms Mexican Authorities – Approximately 10,000 Now Traveling through Mexico to U.S. Southern Border. Sundance – “Despite media claims to the contrary, elected Mexican officials previously promised to allow the invasion of Central American migrants. There is a history here.”

A different insider dish on Trump. Seth Lipsky – “With all the books about President Trump, one mystery has been ignored. How did this supposed clown manage not only to learn Ronald Reagan’s economic formula but also carry it to the next level?”

“Yet none has even tried to address the elephant in the room — how Trump built the platform of economic growth and jobs that managed to crack the Democrats’ presidential-election “Blue Wall” and leave our newscasters agape.

That’s the scoop that Stephen Moore and Arthur Laffer are about to publish in their new book “Trumponomics.” …

It’s not due to hit the bookstores until Oct. 30. You can bet, though, that the networks and the big Democratic papers are going to cover it with derision.

Back in the summer of 2015, these three musketeers of economic growth founded, with Steve Forbes, a committee to, as they put it, “unleash prosperity.” It wasn’t a Trump project. Their aim was to educate all candidates in tax cuts, spending limits, decreased regulations, sound money, the rule of law — and free trade.
… 
This story is not only about Moore, Laffer and Kudlow educating Trump. It’s also about Trump doing the educating (and surprising).

Invasion of the wolves, or of the cannibals?

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Reality and results can be hard to swallow

What Trump Knows That Obama Didn’t. Fred Barnes – “We all know Trump exaggerates and brags. But many of the economic gains were impressive, especially the fact that job openings outnumber job seekers for the first time on record.” As they say, it ain’t bragging if you can do it (Dizzy Dean) yet folks like Barnes haven’t quite got that figured when it comes to President Trump … yet.

“The Obama school of economists and commentators, embarrassed by anemic results, argued that economic growth was stuck, perhaps permanently, at 2 percent annually. That meant Obama was doing the best any president could do. Certainly far better than Trump, about whom they issued dire predictions: …

Wrong, wrong, and wrong. Trump’s economy is expected to grow by more than 3 percent this year.

Barack Obama is a proud man and it was somewhat endearing when he stooped to claim he had created the ground on which Trump’s economy was growing. The media sided with Obama, no surprise.

Trump is correct about the condition of the economy in late 2016. It was weakening. The shift in economic policy to the right changed the direction of growth from down to up, just as it had with JFK and with Reagan. That’s what tax cuts deliver and tax hikes don’t.

Another example is at Coyote Blog: “Readers know that I find Trump and his style to be distasteful, and believe he is dead wrong on immigration and trade” … “If one instead challenges his manhood, he is going to dig in his heels and likely childishly harden his position against whatever you support.” Reality speaks another story. Success is a response to judgment about “dead wrong” but since when does reality or results matter to those blinded by their bias? Consider the idea that there might be something ‘distasteful’ about dishonesty and false witness.

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Jobs vs. Mobs. You choose

White Privilege Means Having Your Reputation and Career Destroyed for Asking a Black Guy for I.D. [Warden] – “Yet another white person convicted by the media of racism, condemned by the internet mob, and fired from her job–all before her side of the story can be heard.”

“Now here’s the fun part: If and only if you watch the video on that news website do you discover that this “racist” white woman is married to a black guy.

Days later, buried at the end of a video most people won’t watch is a piece of context that most people would deem exonerating. Aren’t journalists terrific?

This is happening every other month or so, which leads me to believe that the people who record these videos know exactly how much power they possess to harm whites through weaponized online outrage, eagerly stoked by the left-wing media.

You are interested in civility, in getting along. But there is an entire group of sociopaths on the left who are not interested in these things at all. What they want is the power to control, humiliate, and ultimately ruin you.

Definitely not a mob: Multiple reports of left-wing partisans attacking GOP candidates, staffers. John Sexton – “Whoever dubbed this the Jobs vs. Mobs election was on to something.”

“Yesterday we had the threatening letter left at Sen. Collins’ home. Today, Fox News reports that a “tracker” with the left-wing group American Bridge 21st Century, Wilfred Stark, was arrested after manhandling the female campaign manager for Nevada GOP gubernatorial nominee Adam Laxalt.

Stark was arrested Tuesday night and remains in the Las Vegas city jail. But that’s not the only story of assault circulating today. Minnesota House candidate Shane Mekeland says he was punched by a large man during an event at a local restaurant.

Meanwhile, Minnesota State Representative Sarah Anderson, also a Republican, was attacked over the weekend by a self-described anarchist after she asked him to stop kicking her campaign signs.

Another Day, Another Lefty Thug on the Attack. JVW – “It’s time for the Republican National Congressional Committee to update the ad they created a last week. Let’s have everyone see just the type of people that “progressive” activist groups have on their payroll.”

“Well, you know, passions are running high and Trump has placed us on edge, right? I mean, this must be out of character for Mr. Stark; it’s not as if this Soros-funded group would employ someone with a history of this sort of action, would they?

Paid Democratic voter fraud ring uncovered in Texas. Jazz Shaw – “Despite being constantly assured by Democrats and most of the mainstream media (but I repeat myself) that voter fraud doesn’t really happen, these nagging stories seem to keep popping up.”

“The Attorney General’s office has been pursuing this case for two years and it’s a major organized crime situation. Known as “harvesters,” these women were part of a group that has been filling out ballots in the hundreds or even the thousands. While four women have been indicted on sixteen counts thus far, the AG is saying that there are more people involved and a lot more incidents. These are just the ones they feel confident they can get convictions on for the time being.

Democratic Mobs, Then and Now. Steven Hayward – “with the Democratic Party openly embracing mob tactics, we can make out a reversion to a very old pattern.”

“I went through Lincoln’s first significant public speech, his “Lyceum Address” of 1838, when we was just 28 years old. The formal theme of the speech is “The Perpetuation of Our Political Institutions,” but Lincoln spends a large portion of the speech decrying the rising mob violence of his time. After reviewing three examples of mob violence that had recently received national attention, Lincoln explained …

The Lynching of Mark Judge. John Zmirak – “The Democrats and the media have cast Judge onto the corpse heap of the politics of personal destruction. He has to go the rest of his life under the totally meritless shadow of hideous accusations —the worst you can throw at a man.”

“Political forces desperate to keep the Supreme Court as a means of ruling America by decree showed how utterly ruthless they really are, and Judge was collateral damage. Spiritual forces hungry for the ongoing sacrifice of unborn children were perfectly happy to destroy an innocent adult Christian along the way. Don’t let them win.

The Democrats Must Be Defeated. John Hinderaker – “The Democrats are trying to bully their way back into power through mob actions of various kinds. What you think of the Republicans is pretty much irrelevant. The Democrats’ bullying tactics must not be allowed to succeed. The republic depends on it.”

Trump Takes the Right Position (Again) on Khashoggi. Roger L Simon – “In the Middle East, suffused as it is by the Islamic doctrine of taqiyya — making it permissible, often required, to lie to the kufr (non-Muslim) for the good of the faith — it’s hard to discern who is telling the truth or anything close.”

“As for Trump, I think once again he is being smart not following the herd. If MBS turns out to be a total swine, there’s plenty of time to react accordingly. If not, the president has properly hedged his bets. In any case, in a world (the Middle East) where practically all leaders, other than Israelis, are various degrees of thugs, it may come down to the regrettable choice of the traditional the “enemy of my enemy,” etc. Thanks to Obama’s giveaway of billions, we know who that mainly is — Iran and its client Hezbollah.

Mob navigation, it is.

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Gosnell; Marxism warning; Constitutional threat

JD Mullane: The media’s still blacking out Gosnell. Ed Morrissey – “national news outlets ignored the story even when Gosnell came to trial. Only after Mullane’s picture of the empty courtroom pews set aside for media went viral on Twitter did the media show up to cover the trial.”

“The motive here is pretty transparent. Gosnell raises all sorts of questions not just about abortion itself, but also the manner in which pro-choice forces have cowed governments to the point of refusing to police clinics where abortions are performed. That’s precisely what happened in Pennsylvania for the 17 years prior to the discovery of Gosnell’s horrors, which happened because of an investigation into illicit drug sales. Even before that, though, the state and city refused to follow up on specific complaints about Gosnell’s work and refused to investigate the death of Karnamaya Mongar when it happened.

That editorial bias happens in less overt ways, too. For instance, the film Gosnell: The Trial of America’s Biggest Serial Killer opened in 673 theaters this weekend and scored the highest gross of any independent film released this week. It came in 12th overall, 4th among all new releases, and had a respectable $1,836 per-screen average. (In contrast, the highly promoted Bad Times at the El Royale scored $2,573 per screen.)

Mullane’s correct; the media still doesn’t want to talk about Kermit Gosnell. Fortunately, people can go directly to the theater to see Gosnell and to get an accurate recounting of his horrors.

A wonderful Catholic sermon against cultural Marxism. Luboš Motl – “Archbishop of Prague Dominik Duka has already defended Mons. Petr Piťha – while some Catholics have left the church in the middle of that sermon and some cultural Marxists, e.g. the Templeton-funded “priest” Mr Tomáš Halík, have attacked Mons. Piťha in the media. The priest has already been sued for “fearmongering” by a far left group (ČŽL, Czech Women’s Lobby), too.”

“Another threat, as I see it, is a certain convention’s extension of the rights and freedoms and we are completely overlooking the fact that freedom isn’t a sum of partial freedoms, freedomlets, and little freedoms. Instead, freedom is a unique, compact whole, and it is indivisible. It has the character of the sea that is not the sum of droplets like the rain. Freedom is either present – and then all the smaller things naturally follow from it – or it doesn’t exist and there’s non-freedom instead.

Who and What Threaten the Constitution? Victor Davis Hanson – “Trump poses no threat to the U.S. Constitution. Those who since 2016 have tried to destroy his candidacy and then his presidency most certainly do.”

“In general, free societies more often become unfree with a whimper, not a bang—and usually due to self-righteous pious movements that always claim the higher moral ground, and justify their extreme means by their self-sacrificing struggle for supposedly noble ends of social justice, equality, and fairness.

Media darlings, not media ogres, receive a veritable free pass to ignore constitutional norms. Champions of bipartisan consensus, “the people,” and the power of big government to do the “right” thing and advance social justice are the more dangerous to watch, not those championing the rights of the individual, and small and less intrusive government.

when the media become unctuous and complicit with those whom they are supposed to audit and cross-examine, then politicians and political movements—especially those voicing utopian bromides—grow ever more emboldened, empowered and occasionally quite dangerous.

During Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearings, we saw just how fragile a 231-year-long American institution of due process actually was when it was seen as an obstacle to social justice, the anti-Trump forces, the #MeToo movement, and the general progressive agenda.

The 231 year long American institution is just as fragile as the irresponsibility of its constituents.

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Plausible deniability? Or psychotic denial?

Hillary Clinton Calls for Incivility Against Republicans. Rick Moran – “The most prominent Democrat in the country has, for all intents and purposes, just given a green light to every left-wing kook and violent sociopath to be uncivil to Republicans.”

“I may be wrong but I haven’t heard of any Democrats and their families being chased out of restaurants or threatened with bodily harm by mobs. Nor have I heard about their personal information being published online.

Plausible deniability. That’s what Hillary Clinton now has if Republicans are injured or killed by the mobs. She wasn’t calling for “violence,” just incivility toward political opponents.

The problem is that, as McCotter points out, her words have enabled thousands of crazies who believe the hysteria against Republicans and Trump that has been ginned up by those who know exactly what they’re doing when they seek to create an atmosphere of violence and hate.

Clinton has given her blessing — indeed, her permission — for left-wing radicals to tear the country apart.

We are constantly informed of Trump’s “dog whistles” and “code words” to white supremacists and racists. There’s nothing coded in what Hillary Clinton just said. In my more than 40 years of covering and writing about politics, I’ve never heard anything more irresponsible — or frightening.

Hillary unleashes the thugs. Thomas Lifson – “The use of the word “destroy” is a deliberate attempt to portray violence as justified.”

“Unless sobriety suddenly and miraculously returns to Democrats driven insane by their unexpected loss to Donald Trump, the United States is headed for a downward spiral of political violence of the sort that has destabilized democratic regimes (Weimar Germany and Taisho Japan) and led to fascism and world war.

The WaPo, shamefully, now is a denier of leftist mob violence, instead blaming the right:

We already are so far down that path that the unthinkable is possible: the loss of our constitutional republic to armed conflict.

Democrats Consider Becoming ‘More Ruthless’ After Losing Brett Kavanaugh Battle. John Nolte – “Other than violence, what is left?”

“After launching at least a half-dozen debunked and outright phony allegations of criminal sexual deviancy against Kavanaugh, after accusing him of running a gang rape ring where women were drugged as a means to incapacitate them, after legitimizing the harassment of President Trump and Kavanaugh supporters up to and including chasing them out of public spaces, Democrats are thinking about becoming “more ruthless”?

Are we talking about the same Democrats who violated every norm to hold onto Christine Blasey Ford’s allegations against Kavanaugh until it could do the maximum damage? Are we talking about the same Democrats who used procedural trickery to pass Obamacare? The same Democrats who nuked the Senate filibuster? Who politicized the FBI to try to frame Trump as a Russian spy? Who weaponized the IRS against the Tea Party? Who accused Mitt Romney of murder? Who investigated Sarah Palin’s womb? Who accused Palin of a mass murder in Arizona? Who invented Borking? Who threatened a broadcast network’s license over a miniseries? Who are promising to pack the Supreme Court with more justices?

Footnote 43. John Hinderaker – “Now, Solomon expands on that story by pointing out that the intelligence agencies tried to hide information about that meeting from Congress and the American people

“The FBI and the CIA cannot be trusted. They have been hopelessly compromised by their effort to swing the 2016 presidential election in Hillary Clinton’s favor, and to bring down the Trump presidency after he won the election. Dishonest redactions tell us they have something important to hide, and it isn’t hard to see what that is. The veil of secrecy is slipping, and what we are seeing is the worst political scandal in American history. President Trump should declassify all documents having to do with the the FBI’s Russia investigation, the surveillance conducted on the Trump campaign, and related matters at the earliest possible moment.

Trust depends upon integrity and is necessary for a civilized society.

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