Archive for January, 2019

Where is Don Quixote when you need him?

Mueller’s Danse Macabre At Arrest of Stone. Conrad Black – “Strong-arm Tactic Shocks American Decency.”

“People who might be vulnerable and have known — or claim to have known — the president are indicted for unrelated conduct and then browbeaten and threatened with indictments of their families, unbearable legal costs, and endless press smears to invent inculpatory testimony against the president, with a guarantee of immunity from prosecution for perjury. This is the standard playbook of American prosecutors. It has been denounced repeatedly and every informed person in the country knows about it, but nobody does or says anything consequential.

This danse macabre of the ludicrously numerous and over-armed FBI agents filmed by invitation by the CNN propaganda service in their strenuous exercise to frighten Roger Stone’s cats and dogs raises the questions of what Mr. Mueller and his entirely partisan Democratic lynch-mob, some of whose most prominent members have been exposed and disgraced and fired, think they are now doing.

Whenever the suggestion that it might be time to wind down this stupor-inducing affront to the Bill of Rights starts to get determinedly to its feet in full voice, Mr. Mueller vanishes from sight.

Beclowning themselves to “get” Trump. Don Surber – “Michael Harriot of The Root wrote, “Exclusive: Clemson’s Black Players Refused to Accept Donald Trump’s Invitation to the McCookout.” The picture tells the story but perhaps a more significant tell is the ‘attitude’ and ‘tone’ expressed in the quotes of Harriot about the President. Has he no decency?

Victorina Morales is the best reason yet to cancel the SOTU speech… permanently. Jazz Shaw – “Morales is the illegal alien who was working at the Trump National Golf Club in New Jersey until the media exposed her immigration status. This is presumably a maneuver designed as a jab at the president.” … “We have a Democrat willing to violate federal law to transport an illegal immigrant to the State of the Union address. (8 U.S. Code § 1324 makes it a felony to “transport, or move or attempt to transport or move” an illegal alien.)

POTUS Interview: Speaker Ryan Lied on Border Wall Funding Promise to Get Omnibus Signed. sundance – read this carefully to catch the ‘tone’ and ‘attitude’ of the president in his own words. Compare and contrast to Harriot and his ilk.

Why Trump Will Win the Wall Fight. David Catron – “He continually adapts while the Dems remain static.” Another compare and contrast. The President has his focus on issues. His opponents on enemies.

“The Democrats squealed with delight when the President decided to temporarily end the partial government shutdown. Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer, and their media supporters believe they have won a famous victory. Indeed, more than a few have declared the Trump presidency dead. This isn’t merely delusional, it means that two years of dealing with “the Donald” have taught them nothing about how he operates. The President is adapting to the post-midterm political environment by changing his “game face.” The Democrats continue to indulge their irrational antipathy toward Trump and embrace increasingly inane policy positions. Meanwhile, he is becoming more presidential.

A Letter to Nick Sandmann of Covington Catholic Ten Days Later. Dov Fischer – “It now is some ten days since you unintentionally became famous, and you blessedly no longer are the news outside Covington. But I write to tell you that you are not forgotten for many of us whom you made proud.

“Obama once said that, if he had had a son, it would have been a boy like Trayvon Martin. Nicholas, I do not doubt that. Not for a moment. I would rather set the boys of CovCath as role models.

New Yorkers in the Left Media cannot understand why CovCath boys like you would smile in the faces of people like that lying phony Native American “Vietnam Vet.” That is because in New York they never would have smiled at him in the first place, figuring he might have a knife or a tomahawk, so they would have run away from him. The Left Media do not understand a culture where you actually look people in the eye, smile their way, and stand your ground.

You did not back away. You demonstrated the best of the Covington Catholic education you have gotten by standing your ground and just smiling at him. That smile said: “I am here in peace. I am not going to be incited into escalating your menacing confrontation. So you can go on beating that stupid drum of yours all day, Ringo, but I am not going to back off, nor will I be drawn into a fight. Because I am here to support life and the rights of the unborn.”

You and your classmates never should have been criticized by your local Diocese. The Diocese embarrassed itself nationally when they instantly criticized CovCath kids without having the facts. That was a national disgrace, doing unto you guys what they would not have wanted others to do unto them. Lev. 11. If they must publicly criticize a Catholic, let them pick on someone their own size and comment instead on New York Governor Cuomo’s new “Gosnell Law” that legalizes tearing the limbs of fetuses apart, limb by limb, as late as nine months into pregnancy. But tell them to bang the drum slowly.

what people do to make jabs at windmills in their minds … 

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Economic consequences

Texas town committed to green energy for 25 years, now residents are paying the price. John Sexton – “Texas Public Radio reports that the switch to green energy may not have helped consumers but it definitely helped Georgetown’s PR effort.” It’s all about feeling morally superior, not about life and health.

The number of jobs lost to Obama-era anti-franchise rules is staggering. Jazz Shaw – “By allowing labor unions to hold franchisers like McDonald’s responsible for labor practices of their franchisees, despite having no direct control over those policies, they opened the door to all manner of lawsuits, government fines, and other mischiefs.”

“Even going on the conservative side of the report’s estimates, we’re talking about somewhere in the neighborhood of a quarter million job opportunities lost at a time when the nation was still struggling through one of the more anemic recoveries on record. And, as the report’s authors concluded, all of this was both predictable and avoidable. In fact, many industry analysts did predict it when the rule change went into effect. We just failed to avoid it.

The real reason that some of those NRLB changes were put in place under Barack Obama was the fact that he needed to do some favors for the labor unions.

The enduring appeal of extreme leftism. Neo – “Communism/Socialism is an idea whose time has always come, ever-fresh and ever-new. It keeps rearing its ugly head wearing a new mask, like some vampire returning in a new guise. But can’t we finally drive a stake through its wretched heart?

“In 2014 (but still quite relevant today, if not more so), Robert Stacy McCain wrote an essay describing the latest renaissance of the idea that persists in the face of all empirical evidence to the contrary, and which was correctly critiqued by the economist Ludwig von Mises not long after the Soviets came to power

Combine all that natural appeal with the undeniable propagandist skill of the left—including their willingness to lie in the most brazen manner—and you have an even greater effect. And then combine all of that with ignorance of history and economics, our culture’s reluctance to teach the young our good points and its eagerness to harp on our bad ones, and the fact that people only tend to really learn something through bitter and personal experience.

The Left Strikes Where It Hurts–Debate. John Hinderaker – “Competitive debating had its faults, but there was never any doubt that facts, evidence and logical argument were all that counted.” … “this episode demonstrates that there is no bastion of reason that liberalism cannot infiltrate and pervert.

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The Potomac two-step. Denial. Projection. Faux (?) outrage …

Voter Fraud: Yes, Noncitizens Are Voting In Elections — Texas Just Proved It. Investor’s Business Daily – “When President Donald Trump brought up the idea that noncitizens were casting ballots in elections, the reaction was fast and furious. Such a thing, if it exists at all, is exceedingly rare, we were told.

“After a yearlong voter-fraud probe, Texas discovered that, lo and behold, 95,000 people identified as noncitizens had voter registrations. What’s more, 58,000 of them voted in one or more Texas elections.

But wait. Isn’t all this stuff about noncitizens voting a load of bull? When Trump appointed a voter-fraud commission in 2017, Democrats and the press howled in protest.

Less than a year after he put it together, Trump disbanded his commission, not because it didn’t find anything, but because it faced a fusillade of lawsuits and stonewalling from state election officials.

The most likely explanation for Democrats’ indifference is that they benefit from sloppy enforcement of election laws. We recently pointed out that several House elections in California could have flipped from red to blue thanks to these sorts of fraudulent efforts. And California election officials seem clueless — or utterly indifferent — to whether noncitizens are voting in state elections.

That would explain why Democrats treat every effort to improve ballot integrity as an attempt to suppress voter turnout.

Brennan Brays Again. Scott Johnson – “he remains at large. He is not under indictment. The FBI has not sent a heavily armed battalion to raid his home and take him into custody in front of his friends at CNN.

“Is there any dispute about Brennan’s lies? I don’t think so. Looking around for a summary of Brennan’s lies, I find Victor Davis Hanson’s useful compilation in the June 2018 NR post “A reply to Ronald Radosh’s smear.” The compilation purports only to be illustrative, not exhaustive.

Brennan’s braying represents a classic case of non-denial denial. What a lying partisan hack Obama put in charge of the CIA. And let me add, incidentally, that Brennan’s hackery probably does not even constitute his worst quality.

The Potomac two-step: Will no one stand up to the corruption in the FBI, DOJ, and CIA? Patricia McCarthy – “For nearly ten years now, Americans who have been paying attention have known that our government has become corrupt, that its premier institutions were weaponized by the Obama administration to the point that we have become something of a police state or banana republic.

“It appears we are now a police state. Stalin would be proud. The left and the media all approved of this preposterous bit of nasty theater. Stephanopoulos said such tactics are “common,” a blatant lie. … Stephanopoulos is nothing but a tool of the left, a talking head with a script to read. Who writes the bilge he reads? Would be good to know, but one thing is certain: they have as their goal the destruction of America and its most cherished values.

Bigotry Against Christians Harms The Media’s Reputation. Mollie Hemingway – “The Atlantic’s Taylor Lorenz decided to dunk on Pope Francis for a tweet about Jesus’ mother Mary, claiming Christ faked his resurrection.”

“In recent days we’ve seen reporters attack Karen Pence for volunteering at a Christian school, attempt to dig up dirt against Christian schools, and viciously attack 16-year-old Catholic boys who were being harassed by adults spewing racist and homophobic slurs.

The Christian teachings of Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection are central to the faith, but not everyone is called, as St. Paul puts it. And those who don’t believe view this central teaching as a stumbling block, as Lorenz does.

All that said, the mockery and disrespect in the anti-Christian tweet — and its favorable reception from other journalists — tell us something about the way many in the media treat Christians. As the media lean into their progressive political ideology, they are becoming more and more anti-Christian.

if The Atlantic and other media outlets wonder why they have lost their reputation recently, it can look to the disparity in how it treats conservatives and their ideas and how it rewards the journalism and anti-Christian bigotry of their liberal staff.

Stage Set For A Deal With Democrats. Conrad Black – “the president has just removed from the deck and shredded the best Democratic card, crinkled and greasy at the edges though it had become: the endless claim that he was a madman who would never retreat or compromise, a psychotic bull in the China shop of the world’s nations, rampaging through American government, heedless of any sense of compromise or nuance.

“The Democrats will have to deliver something believable on border security, and if they repair to the leftist house of debating cards, that there is no problem and therefore nothing need be done except a few humanitarian measures, they will be hammered. Pelosi and Schumer are tired components of the creaking and grunting pantomime horse of liberal Democratic medievalism, but they can’t take that argument to the country.

Against Trump: Three Years Later. Julie Kelly – “The NeverTrump crusade sparked by the “Against Trump” issue is adrift and angry. In the past three years, self-proclaimed conservatives of this variety have embraced the climate change agenda, opposed tax reform, and saved Obamacare.”

“NeverTrumpers have been silent about, or worse, helped to justify, the unconstitutional and alarming weaponization of the world’s most powerful law enforcement and intelligence apparatus to undermine a rival presidential campaign, then sabotage a duly elected president.

three years after the nation’s leading conservative outlet published a lengthy appeal to purge Donald Trump from its ranks, the president has an 80 percent approval rating among American conservatives. Trump has cut taxes; restrained the regulatory behemoth; appointed a legacy bench of conservatives federal judges; challenged lazy, ungrateful allies; rewritten outdated trade pacts; confronted a chronic border crisis; and reinvigorated the country’s manufacturing base. He’s defended the unborn, the working class, the patriotic, and the faithful while rejecting the stultifying chokehold of identity politics.

Meanwhile, his so-called conservative detractors are scrounging for primary challengers that sound more like Barack Obama than William F. Buckley, Jr. The damage they’ve done to the modern-day conservative movement will long outlast Trump’s presidency.

And three years later, they have largely proven—once again—that they are still very good at failure.

Sec. DeVos rule change on campus sexual assault now a magnet for angry personal attacks. John Sexton – “This is the kind of thing that would lead journalists to make generalizations about the kind of people who would make such ugly attacks a woman Education Secretary. At least that would be the case if only the attacks were coming from the right. But in this case, the attacks don’t fit the narrative.”

The Next States to Get Hammered by the Blue State Model. Dispatches from District 48 – “people who flee California because it is too expensive and dysfunctional come to Arizona and immediately begin voting for exactly the same policies that made California expensive and dysfunctional. Therefore, I tend to read being in an “inbound” state with dread, knowing that folks are moving in right now to make us the next Illinois or California.

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Cultural turmoil

Can the Republic Survive the Mainstream Media? David Harris – “People complain of the cultural turmoil and upset in the country without realizing that the mainstream media – which nowadays includes almost all broadcast media as well as the digital giants Facebook, Google, and Twitter, and others – are the main determinants of the mood and cultural milieu of the United States.”

“While almost nobody fully grasps the profound cultural influence of the media, we all respond to media-fostered agitation when they’re upset – notably when conservative/Republican ideas are in the ascendance – and the relative calm and quiescence when their like-minded, left-leaning Democrats are in charge.

A sad, perhaps damning adjunct in terms of cultural survival is that while we feel the swings in mood of the culture, most of us have little idea about the media’s pivotal influence.

For the last 50 years, the media have been shooting Republican fish in a barrel. These are also major factors contributing to why most Republicans seem more comfortable in the minority; at least there they can temporarily keep their heads down and enjoy a less precarious existence. Their irrelevance and relative powerlessness gives them welcome respite from the media crosshairs and its highly effective elimination strategies.

We may already have been done-in by the silencing of dissent through oppressive control of information and near-instant social pummeling of the non-compliant; along with coincident and, in some respects, consequent atrophy of independent thought; the terror of non-compliant politicians; and widespread ignorance of and indifference toward the country’s mission and laws. Time will tell.

Attack of the Techno-Lynch Mob. Victor Davis Hanson – “The entire psychodrama boiled down not to what the facts on the ground showed, but rather who each party was perceived innately to be.

“On the one side, the suspects were seen as rambunctious teenage kids (thus easy targets not especially schooled in the arts of rhetoric or repartee).

On the other side, the stereotypes were even more striking.

Add that all up and we had a Medieval morality play ripe for exploitation.

In our new race and gender morality, a teenager when confronted by an activist adult must play the adult as the activist adult plays the role of teenager.

The key in these Internet lynchings is to get in first and worst—and keep at it.

We have been here before, from the Tawana Brawley farce and the Duke Lacrosse myth to the Ferguson “hands up, don’t shoot” and the University of Virginia fraternity rape yarns—and dozens of staged truth-to-power race and gender mythologies in between.

We may have iPhones instead of rope, but human nature has not changed. The competition to appear tough, cruel, defiant—and morally superior—is fed by crowds of anonymous laptop and smartphone shock troops.

What, then, must we relearn from the latest progressive fantasy? … Media truth is relative … Rhetoric not action matters. … The progressive cause feels it is close to victory.

Eventually these Reigns of Terror come to an end when a few finally scream that the emperor is naked and push back—but usually only after thousands of lives are ruined. And we are not even close yet to making Internet lynching an unprofitable venture.

How Many FBI Agents Does It Take to Terrorize an Unarmed 66-Year-Old? George Parry – “All of which leads me to shake my wooly gray head and wonder aloud if any of these two-fisted crime fighters who took down the cunning and dangerous Roger Stone are in any way embarrassed by their participation in this vaudeville act.

“After all these years of investigation, indictments of foreign nationals who will never appear in an American courtroom, and process crimes generated in large part by the investigators themselves, the mask is slipping and the act is wearing thin. Just like the Wonderful Wizard of Oz, the Great and Terrible Mueller is slowly emerging as, in the words of Dorothy, the Great and Terrible humbug.

America Lost Vietnam but Saved Southeast Asia. William Lloyd Stearman – taking on one of the original lies at the beginning of the modern era burdened by Leftist deceit and propaganda. (WSJ via outline.com) That perfidy created much human suffering that still echoes.

“America got into World War II because of Vietnam. … It is widely believed that the Vietnam War was unwinnable. But a 2004 History Chanel documentary featured interviews with knowledgeable North Vietnamese who thought otherwise.

The defeat created more than a million South Vietnamese refugees, who escaped by sea. More than 300,000 drowned, according to a Red Cross estimate. Large numbers also died in concentration camps or were executed. …

Yet even the defeat in Vietnam accomplished a lot. … “America’s action enabled noncommunist Southeast Asia to put their own houses in order. By 1975, they were in better shape to stand up to the communists. Had there been no U.S. intervention, the will of these countries to resist them would have melted and Southeast Asia would most likely gone communist.”

Headlines in the Roger Stone case such as “it’s not the crime, it’s the cover up” prompt reminiscence as the Left attempts to dig up its glory days of Nixon and Vietnam. Distortion, deceit, and populations paying the price are no matter to them. Avoiding the draft; thinking war and love are opposites; and moral preening have all had their place and what drove that is still a cancer on society today.

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meaningful discussion?

People Strongly Against GMOs Had Shakier Understanding Of Food Science, Study Finds. Jonathan Ahl – “However, previous surveys have shown that providing more scientific facts about GMOs to people doesn’t change their minds.” ‘Study finds’ is a flag so skepticism and salt need to be ready to hand. This one is nearly oxymoronic: those who are ignorant don’t know much and don’t learn. The interesting finding is what this state does to people’s expression of their opinions. Meaningful discussion?

“People who most intensely oppose genetically modified food think they know a lot about food science, but they actually know the least, according to a peer-reviewed paper published in January in the journal Nature Human Behaviour.

Then it went on to ask a series of true-or-false questions about science, ranging from basic issues like whether the core of the Earth is hot or cold to questions on genetics, like “Does a non-genetically modified tomato have genes?”

The results showed the more strongly people reported being opposed to GMOs, the lower their test score.

“A lot of people are upset by genetically modified food,” said Sydney Scott, a marketing professor at Washington University in St. Louis, one of the schools that ran the study.

“We have to get people to recognize gaps in their knowledge before we try to teach them new things and have a meaningful discussion,” she added.

Census Fight Is About Dollars and Votes. Rachel Bovard – “There is ample evidence to suggest that the judge’s ruling was ill-informed and partisan.” so it’s about Justice, too.

“glossed over in the foamy outrage on the Left is the rank and hypocritical irony that census documents ask about race, ethnicity, sex, sexual orientation, homeownership status, electricity bills, job status, age, and even the number of toilets in each house—but a question about citizenship is somehow considered too invasive.

But the legal analysis aside, there are two key aspects to this debate. The first is to knock down the claim that the Trump administration is using the census as a means toward deportation. They’re not. But the second is to explain why the determination of citizenship is vitally important to the basic functioning of representative government.

Ultimately, though, the Left’s concern with Census participation does not arise out of some benevolent impulse toward civic participation. Rather, it stems from their two chief concerns, which govern everything: money and power.

Those on the Left, particularly the plaintiffs in this case, are preoccupied with ensuring as much federal money as possible flows to their states, which have very high illegal immigrant populations.

But perhaps more important is the role that illegal immigrant populations play in something called apportionment—the drawing of congressional districts based upon population.

It’s a cynical gambit, but a very real one. And it’s why attention must be paid at every level—to the big, flashy debates over the border wall, and the smaller, but equally important questions on the Census.

Trump wins because he isn’t screwing anyone over. Don Surber – “Unlike the politicians in Washington, he is not trying to vanquish his enemies. He just wants to get a deal done.

Establishment Republicans say this will establish a dangerous precedent. They always say that. Again, who cares? Democrat presidents do whatever they like anyway.

President Trump tried working with these fools but they do not want to cut a deal. They want him to fail, die slowly, and be buried upside down facing away from the sun.

He is not trying to screw over anyone. He is willing to give them something in return for the wall.

No. They would rather starve then let him eat.

No MAGA Hats in the Opinion Workers Union Hall. Clarice Feldman – “1000 reporters lost their jobs, Mueller jumped the shark in arresting Roger Stone in the middle of the night, and the President moved on to another stage of the long Build the Wall battle.” Caitlin Flanagan is cited as noting how Nick Sandmann worked to calm things down in this long summary of a WoW Week. On the budget barriers, the conclusion is

“Should the opposition then run to some numbskull judge in the 9thCircuit to stop him, he will have made his record that no other avenue was available to protect America’s defense. Ignore the claims that the Democrats won this battle. I don’t think they did.

Anti-Trumpers Only Embarrass Themselves. Deroy Murdock – “When you are a jackhammer, everything looks like a broken sidewalk. This is why the Trump-hating media are demolishing themselves.

“The Left’s journalists and artists are so deeply consumed by vile, vicious, venomous rage towards President Donald J. Trump and his supporters that they have become incapable of clear thought.

The media also make jackasses of themselves by complaining about small things that proved untrue.

What explains the media’s incessant self-mutilation?

More likely, though, the Trump haters have learned nothing from all of this. As they labor to destroy the president, these ink-stained suicide bombers are destroying themselves.

Is meaningful discussion possible in these circumstances?

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An agreement has been made. Glee and gloating may blind some about consequences if it is not kept..

Progs and NeverTrumps celebrate Trump postponing SOTU at their peril. Thomas Lifson – “even the New York Times realizes that the story is far from over, calling Trump’s move a “seeming capitulation.”

“Trump has ensured that his next SOTU, whenever it takes place, will get a huge television audience. … Trump has also given the lie to caricatures of him as “impulsive,” “reckless,” and likely to blunder us into a nuclear war, views held as gospel among the NeverTrump faction of putative conservatives. … Trump has removed a huge distraction from the real battle, over the border barrier, and the Dems’ refusal to fund the federal government with a physical barrier funded. … Trump has reaffirmed his commitment to constitutional governance, including the specifics of executive, congressional, and judicial power. This is crucial, because both the legislative and judicial branches have disregarded their responsibilities and limitations

Why Trump went for a 21-day suspension of the partial shutdown, and what happens next. Thomas Lifson – “Nonetheless, as President Trump correctly noted in the Rose Garden address, it was an “agreement.” The Dems agreed to procedural rules that can be used to make the case for border barrier construction.” Pelosi et al are celebrating a touchdown with a fervent glee. They don’t seem to realize that one touchdown does not win the game. Trump appears to have his eyes on the bigger picture.

“Democrats naturally are gloating, calling it a surrender and admonishing Trump to “learn his lesson” and acknowledge his defeat by the wise and all-knowing Nancy Pelosi. This certainly gives them a sugar high while providing evidence for future use that their priority is humiliating Trump rather than attending to the needs of border security.

Trump’s stonewall on the shutdown had to end because a choke point had been discovered by the opposition (a group that includes Congressional Democrats and government employee unions along with the media): commercial aviation.

It may be coincidence, but this kill shot job action occurred in the wake of extraordinary signs that House Democrats were wavering in their support for Pelosi’s “not one dollar” opposition to a border wall – while the government is (partially) shut down.

It is possible that the conference committee will not be able to come up with anything that satisfies both parties, in which case the partial shutdown resumes, but this time with the Democrats shown to be willing to shut down the government in order to prevent a border barrier. … And President Trump will be delivering the State of the Union address at a date to be determined, but before the shutdown might resume. This will allow the highest possible platform for President Trump to comment on the negotiations, with Nancy Pelosi sitting behind him.

One big news item is about a science fair project on football inflation trying to prove Brady cheated. Many headlines are out there on the budget deal and most are in a similar vein: they are about defeating the President and not about the issues involved. The focus on personality rather than the state of the country is telling. A few are taking note of the tactics and strategies and how the ‘opposition’ is being played. One such tactic is a common managerial technique. A bi-partisan congressional committee has now ‘accepted’ a charge to produce results in a clearly defined arena on a defined time schedule. That’s a focus and a definition of responsibility that has not previously existed. An agreement has been made. There will be consequences if it is not kept.

Tripwire – Chairman Adam Schiff Sends HPSCI Witness Transcripts to Robert Mueller, Does Not Release Publicly. sundance – “This is a key tell and completely irreconcilable by those who work for Epoch Times news organization who continually claim that Rod Rosenstein and Robert Mueller are working earnestly toward the cause of justice.”

“Cunning Schiff is essentially diffusing a background question about how Mueller is able to exploit transcripts that were given to Rod Rosenstein by Devin Nunes when he asked the DOJ to conduct the declassification review. Notice no-one in the media asked this question because it would show the uncomfortable synergy between Rosenstein and Mueller.

Speaker Pelosi, Adam Schiff (HPSCI), Elijah Cummings (House Oversight), and Jerry Nadler (House Judiciary) are working with Robert Mueller (team) and Rod Rosenstein (internal DOJ corrupt officials) on a very carefully constructed plan toward the goal of an impeachment vote against the sitting President.

Unfortunately, too many people, on all sides, still refuse to believe the institutions of the DOJ and FBI are comprehensively corrupted.

Roger Stone’s SWAT team arrest: Are we even America anymore? Patricia McCarthy – “After news broke of the pre-dawn raid on Roger Stone’s home Friday morning in Florida by twenty-nine heavily-armed agents in nineteen vehicles, lights flashing, CNN serendipitously on hand to film the raid, millions of us realized once and for all that we are no longer living in the America we knew and loved.”

“Those same millions of us have known for over two years that the Mueller “probe” is a huge and well orchestrated cover-up. There are now at least two books, Gregg Jarrett’s and Dan Bongino’s, and well researched investigative articles that prove this beyond doubt.

That such an aggressive show of force could be visited upon a non-violent person accused of alleged verbal crimes is truly frightening. That so many in the media are celebrating the use of such a Gestapo tactic is horrifying. Suddenly, it is catastrophically clear that America is no longer a constitutional republic, a nation of laws and justice.

Roger Stone’s Arrest: What’s Scandalous, And What Isn’t. John Hinderaker – “The salient point is that Mueller’s indictment of Stone confirms that the Trump campaign had nothing to do with the theft of emails from the Democratic National Committee or their publication by Wikileaks

“Now, for what is truly scandalous about Roger Stone’s arrest: the manner in which it was carried out. The arrest was preserved on video because someone–presumably either the FBI or Mueller’s team–tipped off CNN, and CNN had cameras stationed in front of Stone’s residence at 5:00 in the morning. The video shows a dozen heavily armed FBI agents carrying out what can fairly be described as a paramilitary operation against Stone’s home. Why? Was there some reason to think Stone was so dangerous that it required a pre-dawn raid by a dozen agents with AR-15s to take him into custody?

No such claim has been made, nor would it be plausible. The show that Mueller and the FBI put on for the cameras of their political ally, CNN, was a disgrace.

A few years ago, I couldn’t have imagined saying this, but the FBI has proved to be corrupt and hopelessly politicized. It needs, at a minimum, a thorough housecleaning. It might even be necessary to put the FBI out of business and start over with a new federal investigative agency.

Jack Handey – “I hope life isn’t a big joke, because I don’t get it.”

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Ultimate irony – but will it register?

The Ultimate Irony of the ‘Native American Elder’ and the MAGA Hat Kids. Selwyn Duke – “Had Western civilization never existed and the dreaded white man not ever arrived on these shores, the Indians would still be living a stone-age lifestyle. The “noble savage” suckers may romanticize this, but neither they nor Talking Bull want any part of it.

Libels of and threats to Covington Kids will face Kentucky justice. Thomas Lifson – “the prospect of Kentuckian jurors judging those who libel or threaten their children is delightful. There are two separate avenues available, and both are being explored by people ready and willing to act.

“Trump Derangement Syndrome, which is the underlying reason why the explosion of hate for the Catholic Church has become so public (in anticipation of the appointment of Amy Coney Barrett to the next SCOTUS vacancy), is literally “derangement” – meaning that ordinary internal mental cautions that prevent people from crossing important lines are discarded in a frenzy.

If one or more people from outside Kentucky are indicted and brought to the state for prosecution under a terroristic threat statute, it would sober up a lot of others.

The real evil of fake news. Gavin Wax – “The fake news media is playing a game of sleight of hand with the American people. By creating a narrative and having an entire industry built around feeding this narrative, they attempt to get the public’s mind off the brass tacks of what is happening in terms of public policy.

Apologies Aren’t Enough After The Covington And BuzzFeed Media Fiascos. Investor’s Business Daily – “If mainstream reporters don’t like Trump calling their work “fake news,” they should stop providing him so many fresh examples.

Joy Behar: We jumped to conclusions about the Covington Catholic kids because we desperately want Trump out of office. Allahpundit – “How did a truthbomb like this end up being casually dropped by, of all people, Joy Behar?” Of course, it’s Allahpundit and he has to get a few TDS digs in but there is an awareness worthy of note.

David French noticed too: “When activists and partisans do that, they send a clear message to their opponents: They will destroy you if they can. … That’s the message that sent a shudder up the spine of husbands and wives during the Kavanaugh hearings. That’s the message that sends a shudder up the spine of moms and dads as we watch men and women try to ruin the Covington Catholic kids. This isn’t just a media scandal. When we see the hate, some of us see our sons, and we know that in America today, their futures, their reputations, and – given the prevalence of death threats – perhaps even their very lives are in the hands of an angry mob.”

But not all of this is due to cognitive dissonance. I think some of the doubling down is a deliberate strategy. If you want to marginalize the Bad People then the original narrative of the confrontation must prevail, whatever the evidence says. Keep pushing it. Hope that the sheer cumulative force behind the assertion carries it to widespread acceptance despite all evidence to the contrary. It works, you know. It’s happened before.

This is the lesson to learn from all of this, if you haven’t learned it already. neo – “I finally noticed and comprehended this game about two years post-9/11—a process I’ve described in my “a mind is a difficult thing to change” series—and this was one of the main reasons for my political change.” Rush Limbaugh has been on a tear about this and it is good to see a growing awareness. Neo has several good posts on his topic this morning as well.

“The tactic is even more blatantly obvious now. But many people who self-describe as being on the right seem to remain blind to it. That’s one of the themes of this recent post of Ace’s, in which he quotes a Twitter user named davereaboi as writing the following (the “you” here is the supposedly conservative press):

People are furious that those of you who bought into it and couldn’t resist making knee-jerk Virtue Signaling condemnations have not yet learned about the nature of the enemy we’re fighting:

Activists are trained to set up these scenarios, the media runs with stories that are too good to check because they reinforce their biases. They do this on purpose. You just have to read Lefty activist literature. It’s all there, for decades. *Not knowing is your failure.*

That is the heart of the matter. How can intelligent people have been taken in by this? I really don’t know. It’s not just that they’re in the Beltway, or interested in virtue-signaling, although those things are part of it. At this point they seem incredibly stupid and destructive, or else only pretending to believe in what they say they believe.

We know what game the left plays. Why don’t all writers on the right know it, too?

What happens when only one side enjoins in battle?

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The bell tolls for thee

Covington Catholic diocese sticks to its calumny against its kids. Monica Showalter – “So much for the church’s teaching on ‘dignity and respect of the human person.’

“This is sick stuff because the facts show that the kids acted with admirable restraint in the face of a genuine provocation to violence. They should actually be drawing praise from their diocese.

Sue The Bastards! [Updated]. John Hinderaker – “Is this the most outrageous hate campaign of my lifetime? I think so. Being sued is much too good for these liberals, but I am afraid it is the best we can do.” There may be a mounting frustration that this ‘is the best we can do’ as not enough to address the evil. They understand for whom the bell tolls.

YGBKM: Twitter suspends troll account that spread Covington video. Ed Morrissey – “In other words, we all got gaslighted, as Catholic News Agency’s Kevin Jones realized

The Left vs. Logic. Deana Chadwell – “The left has walked away from absolute truth and therefore from sensible policy and therefore from sanity.

“Our language is a contract that we have with others in our society and we mustn’t breach that contract. … The left has been majoring in language reassignment for decades.

When a contract means nothing …

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Pravda Redux. no apologies. grave danger

Bill Kristol deletes tweet, fails to apologize for jumping on phony story of MAGA hat kids harassing Native American. Thomas Lifson – “He quietly deleted his tweet claiming moral superiority for what he imagines John McCain would have done, compared to that reprobate Donald Trump (who correctly did nothing).” For why apologies are needed, see The Truth about the Lincoln Memorial Incident. Taylor Day – “There was plenty for Americans to be upset by in that video, but contrary to the reporting by the Associated Press, the bad behavior did not come from the group of boys.

“Despite the hateful rhetoric directed at them, the boys are now being held to higher standards than the adults that are indisputably provoking them, and they behaved admirably. While they misread the atmosphere when the Native American group approach them as being friendly and continued to dance and call out their High School’s prideful chants, they quickly realized the awkwardness of the situation when the Native American elder singled out one of the MAGA-hat wearing teens and put himself inches from the young man’s face beating a drum.

The crime the mainstream media is claiming occurred? The teen assaulted the man with his smile.

The media should be ashamed of how they quickly picked up and ran with edited footage of the “altercation” to pose the boy, who said not a word nor flinched a muscle and offered only an innocent smile that was most likely a nervous reaction to the oddity of performance before him, as a racist bigot.

The liberal media has been under pressure this week after a Buzzfeed News article implicating President Trump in crimes was promptly discredited by Mueller’s office. However, they clearly have not learned any lesson from their failure to act with integrity by pushing a narrative that is framed and false, and they will eventually have to reap what they have sown from their intentional seeds of defamatory divides.

When the Press Sees Red. Michael Brendan Dougherty – “The condemnation of the students was nearly universal. … And then, predictably, the story began to unravel.”

“Like so many stories that supposedly conveyed the reality of Trump’s America, that so perfectly displayed white Christian menace, it turned out to be fake. Fake, like the Ohio University student who sent herself anti-gay hate mail; manufactured, like the racist harassment on a bus that Hilary Clinton tweeted about; an attempted frame-up, with liberal credulity made into the co-conspirator, like the vandalism of a Jewish cemetery done by a progressive reporter.

But good enough to share, good enough to cause doxxing, and justify the harassment and assault of children.

Whatever happened, it conveyed a reality “that seems impossible to deny.” I can’t imagine accepting a payment for writing that kind of conclusion. Although, writing it serves as some testimony to Fallows’ embarrassment. It “seems” impossible to deny only if you felt an overwhelming compulsion to condemn this kid, his school, and his community, “whatever happened.” The posited menace is real, the events, they don’t matter. Whatever.

I would like to welcome the liberal press to the Reality Based Community, but there are fewer Catholic children who deserve getting spat on in it. So I doubt they’ll show up.

From the BuzzFeed Psychodrama to the Covington Video Melodrama. Victor Davis Hanson – “it would be wise for everyone to take a deep breath and wait at least 24 hours before snap editorializing, in response to the latest sensational morality tale flashing across electronic media.

An example at Slate: Trump’s Rhetoric Is Raising the Risk of Right-Wing Terrorism. Daniel Byman – “We need to have a serious debate about the causes of political violence, before the next attack.” He goes on about anti-semitism and gun control completely oblivious to reality. His world is a very dangerous construct of fantasy and ideology completely detached from reason or integrity to satisfy his need for a bogeyman to blame for all ills he thinks he sees. Compare and contrast what Byman thinks Trump has said to that directed at the Catholic teens.

Reporting on each other: the Covington boys, the Native American, and the smart phone vs. the telescreen. neo – “Today’s smart phones (not envisioned by Orwell) can record, as well. But what they record, how it is edited and used and described and slanted, is the task of social media and the MSM.

“One person who did apologize, and quite profusely, was Scott Adams. I’m embedding his video in case you’re interested in watching. As Adams says, “This is fake news that actually damages the lives of children.” What I find especially interesting—and what I haven’t yet heard Adams explain—is how he, of all people, was originally among those taken in by this story

If the viewers of such videos don’t have a huge amount of skepticism, they are easily taken in by people using videos to mislead. Even people with a great deal of skepticism, such as Scott Adams, can apparently be taken in by the right video presented in a very clever way.

This is obviously a grave danger, because videos (like photos before them) can easily give the appearance of being the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, and can whip the crowd up into enormous hatred. And yet the actual truth can be something very, very different.

What can you believe? How can you tell?

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Fact free and the cost of eggs

Dear reporter: First, wipe the egg and the smirk off your face. Don Surber – “He fell for the BuzzFeed story — leaked to change the subject from the shutdown — which Bungling Bob Mueller disavowed late Friday. … Blake took to Twitter this morning to virtue signal about journalism.

The Tables Turn on Pelosi and the Media. Clarice Feldman – “While she might have thought otherwise, the power of the commander-in-chief is far greater than that of the speaker of the House, and the humiliating way this was brought home to the congressional equivalent of Maerose Prizzi (h/t Michael Walsh) was something.

“CNN and MSNBC alone made almost 200 references in 12 hours to the BuzzFeed story.

The fun and games were soon over. In an unprecedented move, Special Counsel Mueller’s office said the story was untrue.

Fact-Free Politics: From Climate Change to Trickle Down. Thomas Sowell – “In this era when there has been more information available to more people than at any time in the past, it is also true that there has been more misinformation from more different sources than ever.

“We are not talking about differences of opinion or inadequate verification, but about statements and catchwords in utter defiance of facts.

The next time someone talks about “climate change deniers,” ask them to name one — and tell you just where specifically you can find their words, declaring that climates do not change. You can bet the rent money that they cannot tell you.

It is much the same story on economic issues. … Here, yet again, all you need to do is think back over your own life, and ask yourself if you have ever — even once in your entire life — seen, heard or read a single human being who advocated this “trickle-down theory.”

Issues in both economics and science can get complicated. But when one side of those issues has to resort to demonstrably false catchwords, that should give us a clue.

Fact free isn’t cost free.

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How dare you! (but who cares, anyway?) See how that works?

How Dare Karen Pence Be Christian! Michael Brown – “The outrage is over any connection between the historic Christian faith – the dominant, oppressive religion of America! – and the public square. Such a connection must be severed at once.

“In the famous words of John Adams, “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious People. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

We do not check that morality and that religion at the door when we are elected to public office, nor do our family members.

Mrs. Pence, we are with you!

It’s Open War on Christianity. John Hinderaker – “The overt bigotry on display from members of the left-wing press is, in my opinion, shocking.” He cites David French at the National Review explaining the situation.

Quit hoping that Trump will just go away. Rich Lowry – “The walls supposedly are always closing in on Donald Trump. The end is always beginning.

“Despite media reports that Trump is perpetually furious and feeling besieged, he has never shown the slightest brittleness or sense of being overwhelmed in public. He’s always his same ebullient, combative, outrageous self.

He’s the least likely president to get worn down by an impeachment fight. What would discourage or deflate the normal human energizes him.

Besides all this, no one should really hope for a premature end to the Trump presidency. Whatever the exact circumstances, it’d be a trauma to the republic and not accepted by a significant plurality of the electorate. The wish fulfillment of Trump’s critics is better directed toward the less spectacular, yet difficult-enough task of beating him in 2020.

Weird new frontiers in media bias: BuzzFeed versus Robert Mueller? Howard J. Warner – “Those on the right see this as further evidence of “fake news,” and the left argues that this proves how fair Mueller will be.

“Given the damaging nature of these claims by BuzzFeed, one would imagine that other network reporters would be careful repeating this story. They use the caveat that “if it were true,” then this would be impeachment-worthy. But the glee in their voices was unmistakable yesterday morning and throughout the day. Now they are apoplectic because the lie was revealed.

The outcome of this error in reporting will be watched carefully, but probably no one will be punished. The result will be a stalemate that continues the animosity in Washington and threatens our republic.

Giving Pelosi a Taste of Her Own Medicine. Karl Notturno – “Au contraire, senator! Sophomoric responses seem to be the only responses that sophomores can understand. It’s sad because it seemed as though Graham was in the process of growing a spine.

“Many establishment conservatives, for some reason, hate getting their hands dirty. They hate engaging in the mudslinging that is the very hallmark of politics.

the only conservatives and Republicans the mainstream media and its surrogates are capable of respecting are either dead or emasculated.

Perhaps the only surprising fact here is that more NeverTrumpers haven’t joined the former category; excessive hand-wringing and pearl-clutching cannot be good for one’s health.

We must have learned something from years of abuse from an overly biased media and sophomoric political pundits who seem more concerned with scoring cheap political shots than actually governing the country and preserving its well-being. In fact, we obviously did learn something. We elected Donald Trump.

Abuse and cheap political shots are easy. And if one side won’t dignify them with a response, let alone a retributive attack, they are an exceedingly effective weapon. …

The only way to deter such base tactics is to use the same tactics effectively against the perpetrators. …

The incalculable schadenfreude that many downtrodden conservatives have felt over the past few years as they have watched President Trump mercilessly troll the Democrats is only amplified by the ironic fact that the president was able to do so simply by using the Democrats’ tactics more skillfully than they could.

Civility and etiquette are nice things. And they are also expensive when deployed only by one side.

Buzzfeed, Like Lawfare, Has a Role to Play in Resistance Operation. sundance – “While the media banter relentlessly about their latest resistance angle du jour; it is perhaps a more beneficial discussion to remind and outline the larger strategy at play. Honing the political skills.

“The baseline here is that everything the institutional-left does, is sequential and planned. This is what they do. This is all they do. None of the characters within the institutions of professional leftism create anything; build anything; have a life purpose for anything, other than organizing their efforts to exploit control of others via politics. This is all they know how to do.

Optics and innuendo are key elements, tools per se’, in the Alinsky narrative engineering process.

what matters is the ‘claim that needs to be investigated’. Did President Trump direct Michael Cohen to lie to congress; no, that’s silly.

All of it is a nothing-burger, but that doesn’t technically matter for the needs of the ‘resistance’; what they need is a tenuously valid innuendo trail they can exploit with Michael Cohen on February 7th, that will allow Elijah Cummings to pass that specific aspect to Adam Schiff and Jerry Nadler.

See how that works?

Trump Puts Schumer and Pelosi in a Brilliant Vise Grip. Jim Davis – “Trump has created a lingering atmosphere in which Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer feel compelled to stop him at any cost. In political terms, they’re willing to die on this hill.” This is another ‘see how that works’ essay. “We didn’t hire Trump to go to church with us. We hired him to clean house. This is the best chance to get it done.

All Three Networks Ignore ‘March For Life,’ Cover Pro-Abortion ‘Women’s March’ Instead. Paul Bois – “An anti-Trump march happening tomorrow is more interesting to the networks

“According to LifeNews, despite an estimated 100,000 people being in attendance at the pro-life march along with President Trump’s address to the crowd via video, the left-wing machines could not so much as “give a passing mention to the March for Life” during the Friday morning shows.

She continued, “The fact that the March for Life happens every year makes it even more notable. Every single year for 45 years there has been a huge march protesting U.S. abortion law, despite making little headway in national policy over that time. That’s incredibly newsworthy.”

What happens when one’s voice is not heard? These folks have been incredibly patient. Just how long will that last?

Schiff for Brains Misleads Congress. Julie Kelly – This is about Bruce Ohr versus Adam Schiff. It illustrates the problem related to equality in justice and how the Left protects its interests.

“The new chairman of the House Intelligence Committee authored a memo dated January 28, 2018, ironically titled, “Correcting the Record—The Russia Investigation.” But it is Schiff who needs to correct his own record in light of new and damaging information that contradicts several claims he made in that document.

Representative Adam Schiff: about Bruce Ohr’s testimony. neo – “Adam Schiff would like nothing better than for Trump to be impeached, and if he has to lie to do it, that’s certainly an activity with which he’s both practiced and comfortable.

More on Fusion and FISA and the FBI and DOJ. neo – “The plot thickens, and it was already plenty thick

“Sorting out the details of the lies and the truths on this entire “Russia collusion” story has been practically a full-time job. One thing that has been clear for a long long time now is that the FISA application process based on the Steele dossier stank to high heaven.

But is most of America following this outrage, or caring? My answer is “no.”

And yet America has just installed a House determined to cover all of this up and to destroy Trump, which was the original idea in the first place.

Useful idiots, Kristof edition. Scott Johnson – “Lo these many years since the Russian Revolution and the collapse of the Soviet Union, the New York Times is still doing public relations for Communism.” – Yet another ‘this is how it is done’ case study.

“Professor Hirschfeld’s increased awareness of Castro’s tyranny caused her to ask a question that evidently did not occur to Kristof: “[T]o what extent is the favorable international image of the Cuban health care system maintained by the state’s practice of suppressing dissent and covertly intimidating or imprisoning would-be critics?”

Suffice it to say that Kristof seems not to have bothered himself with a call to Professor Hirschfeld before composing his monument to stupidity.

Lots of folks not bothering with due diligence, it seems.

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Just where is the corruption?

The big news today is the big revelation from the transcript of the testimony Justice Department official Bruce Ohr gave Congress in August. Lucianne.com cites several stories on this. Criminality Of Deep State, Investigation Of Trump Confirmed — Has U.S. Become A Banana Republic? Investor´s Business Daily, by Staff. What Bruce Ohr Told the FBI. Wall Street Journal, by Kimberley A. Strassel. Stunning: Ohr Testimony Reveals Top DOJ Officials Briefed About Steele Before FISA. Sara Carter.

Then there’s Something Different Within The Bruce Ohr Testimony. sundance – “While reading a great article by Mollie Hemmingway at The Federalist, something stands out that might lend a cautious amount of optimism toward ongoing ‘spygate’ investigative inquiries and accountability.

“Until the release of the Ohr transcript all prior reports and leaks of witness testimony have been from the FBI side of ‘spygate’. Bruce Ohr is the first witness from the Main Justice (DOJ) side of the issue.

Within the released witness transcripts, lawyers from the FBI were interceding in the testimony and instructing witness not to answer questions; and/or blocking statements from the witness to the questioners. This pattern exists in Comey, McCabe, Baker, Page, Priestap and Strzok statements. However, there is a stark difference, a much more fulsome set of answers, obvious in the testimony from Bruce Ohr.

In the aftermath of the corrupt enterprise, and as the house of tenuous cards begins to collapse, the exoneration of Clinton is the lesser risk; and the discoveries of how far out of bounds the FBI and Intelligence Community traveled becomes the bigger risk.

Other news: Mr. Cohen is saying he was instructed to lie to Congress. A CODEL (Congressional Delegation) was instructed to used commercial transportation for a visit overseas, the State of The Union deplatforming brouhaha continues, the mud flies … 

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dehumanizing invective. is it a disease?

A License To Hate. Victor Davis Hanson – “Note the force of such dehumanizing invective that transcends political differences. Trump voters were not just mistaken in their political allegiances.”

What is it that really smells here?

“These outbursts were all voiced from highly educated elites (Caputo has a journalism degree from the University of Miami, Deutsch graduated from the Wharton School, Jeong from Harvard Law School, Strzok received a master’s degree from Georgetown, Wilson attended George Washington University). And all engaged in vicious and cowardly stereotyping of a demographic in a manner that they assumed involved no downside. Rather, the smears were delivered on the expectation of winning approbation from their peers. And they did in twitter-fueled competitions to find the crudest pejoratives.

But the hatred was not confined to the media and politicos, but rather also came from the very top of the Democratic Party.

What is again odd about these examples of open progressive racist, cultural, and class contempt for the American interior, is not just how ubiquitously politicians and journalists voiced them, but also how candidly and indeed confidently they repeated notions of smelly, toothless, ape-like, lazy “garbage people.”

Never Trumpers hardest hit. Don Surber – “As Bungling Bob Mueller’s investigation looks more futile by the hour, the Never Trump crowd has turned on him. They know he has squat.”

“They are trying to dissolve the Crazy Glue that stuck them to the Russian conspiracy as it becomes clear that there was no Russian collusion — and that the FBI had no business investigating President Donald John Trump.

The State of the Shutdown. David Catron – “Dem SOTU stunt signals their growing desperation.” get out your dictionary: “Having been lured into a political oubliette and chained to a wall, they are now being systematically immured by a man upon whom they have heaped countless insults.”

“The damage has now reached the point where Pelosi and Schumer are facing growing revolts in their own conference, particularly among freshman Democrats in the House, over their refusal to even negotiate with the President.

And it goes without saying that there are other Democrats who want an end to the shutdown — the furloughed federal workers. … He put their dilemma in the form of a question on Twitter: “Do the Dems realize that most of the people not getting paid are Democrats?”

The Democrats and the legacy “news” media immediately denounced Trump’s claim as false. … The political contributions of government “workers” in the 2016 presidential campaign tell the tale, as the Hill reported at the time

These hopelessly lopsided contribution percentages soundly refute any claim that a significant number of Republicans have been furloughed during the shutdown.

Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer might as well face it. President Trump has spent most of his life negotiating with real estate developers, unionized construction companies, and New York zoning officials. He comes from a business environment that makes the Beltway look like a chapter of Habitat for Humanity. So, to put it bluntly, they have already lost. Trump has them in a deep hole, chained to the wall, and is busy with brick and mortar cutting off their only source of political oxygen. The country is with him on this and he knows it. Border security “trumps” bureaucratic comfort. Time to make a deal, #Chancy.

related: Government Shutdown: Pampered Federal Workers Don’t Deserve Anyone’s Pity. Investor’s Business Daily. “The worst thing about the government shutdown isn’t the — minimal — harm it’s causing. It’s all the misplaced hand-wringing about federal workers, most of whom are overpaid and underworked, and all whom will get their back pay once government reopens.”

Pelosi’s stunt is just more progressive de-platforming. John Sexton – “it seems pretty clear from the left’s reaction that what’s happening here is just more de-platforming of Trump.” … “In other words, to the degree it’s possible, don’t let him speak.”

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Humpty Dumpty

A migrant caravan full of women and children led by a convicted child rapist? Monica Showalter – “In a jaw-dropping news item utterly ignored by the mainstream press here, a top Mexican migration official told La Razón, a left-leaning Mexican newspaper, criminals were coming to dominate the caravans now, with open-borders activists agreeing.

“Somewhere, somehow, this truth has got to eventually get out. The press isn’t reporting it. But the fact remains, the caravan problem is becoming a criminal enterprise and criminals, extremely violent ones, are among its leaders.

If that, and this arrest, is not a case for a wall, what is it going to take?

It’s Climate Alarmists Who Remain in Denial. Marc Sheppard – “Notice how in the ten years since liberal journalist Ellen Goodman introduced the term into the debate, “denier” has all but replaced “skeptic” and “realist” in the public lexicon.

“So then, 20th-century warming and cooling patterns do not correspond to man-made atmospheric CO2 concentrations but do correspond to natural solar, ocean, and cloud variations. And yet, the left wants to legislate a “Green New Deal” that would completely rewire the U.S. economy and add tens of trillions of dollars to the national debt in order to reduce atmospheric CO2.

Tell me: exactly who is in denial?

If Only Trump Haters Could Realize How Dangerously Our Democracy Is Being Threatened. Dov Fischer – “What has gone around will come around ever more destructively.”

“What Democrats and other Trump haters do not grasp is that everything the FBI top brass has done to President Trump is being tested now: Will our society tolerate such FBI behavior aimed at our freely elected national leader? Is it OK to run wildcat operations within the FBI aimed at destroying a President whom the FBI leadership detests? More than whether Strzok and Page had a “secret society” and “insurance policy” to prevent Trump from governing, more than whether Comey deserved to be fired by Trump for being the dishonest and untrustworthy snake he is, more than whether the Mueller Investigation has gone completely off the rails after two years of searching for collusion that did not exist, we face a serious and much more threatening Constitutional crisis for the future: Do we have systems in place to deter the FBI from doing yet even worse to a future President?

If today’s outrages against Trump are accepted by the Left, it all will be done again — only not to Trump next time.

Once broken …

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Thought police

35 Times the FBI “Deviated from Standard Practice” or Committed Crimes in Effort to Exonerate Hilary and Indict Trump. Jim Hoft – “Of course the employees of the FBI are in a funk, their fearless and corrupt leaders, as well as leaders in Obama’s corrupt DOJ, went to extravagant links to exonerate the obvious criminal actions of Hillary Clinton, and then to do all they could to prevent candidate Trump from winning an election. Then once the election was won by President Trump, they went to unheard of depths of deceit and corruption to attempt to remove him from office.

The FBI’s ‘Trump treason’ probe flunked civics. Rich Lowry – “US presidents over the decades have made many foolhardy decisions that have undermined our security; never before have they been deemed a fit subject for an FBI investigation.” … “If the Times reporting is correct, the FBI grew more suspicious of Trump’s conduct based on comments that have been widely misunderstood. Among the bill of particulars:

“As part of the executive branch, the FBI should brush up on the powers of the chief executive. The president gets to fire subordinate executive branch officials. He gets to meet with and talk to foreign leaders. He gets to make policy toward foreign nations. Especially important to the current investigation, he gets to say foolish, ill-informed and destructive things.

the Times story is a damning account of an offense against our political order, and not by Trump.

Watergate by Any Other Name. Roger Kimball – “For almost three years now, the intelligence services and police apparatus of the deep state have worked tirelessly to undermine Donald Trump.

“Asked recently by Fox News host Jeanine Pirro whether he is or has ever been working for Russia, Trump responded, “I think it’s the most insulting thing I’ve ever been asked.” Quite right, too. For the rest of us, though, it’s more than insulting. It’s been going on so long that we are tempted to forget what this travesty really is. Familiarity has bred indifference. It is time that we woke up to the truth. What we have been witnessing is a blatant and nefarious effort to repeal the results of a lawful election and undermine the integrity of our democratic institutions. The fact that this attempted coup is being undertaken not by wild-eyed revolutionaries but well-accoutered bureaucrats high up the feeding trough of the deep state makes the assault on our freedoms more, not less, frightening.

Trump’s shutdown trap? Thomas Lifson – “In only five more days of the already-“longest government shutdown in history” (25 days and counting, as of today), a heretofore obscure threshold will be reached, enabling permanent layoffs of bureaucrats furloughed 30 days or more.” Bug or feature?

“Keep in mind that saboteurs cannot be individually identified and RIFed, but they can be included in the layoffs if they meet the criteria above in terms of seniority and service, and that they must be given 60 days’ notice. But once they are gone, they are no longer free to obstruct using the “process” as their friend because they are gone.

Of course, you can expect lawsuits on every conceivable point I suspect that the definition of “furlough” would be one matter of dispute.

President Trump has proven that he is a “disruptor” who changes the framework of thinking on major issues by refusing to accept the “givens” – the assumptions of how things always have been done, and therefore always must be done.

Such a mass RIF would be the Trump version of Ronald Reagan firing the air traffic controllers when they went on an illegal strike in 1981. That was completely unexpected by his enemies, vehemently criticized, and successful.

Trump’s language, Trump’s thought. Neo – it’s about the English professor grading tweets for spelling and grammar in order to rationalize his ad hominem judgments. Neo takes on the absurdity of the professor’s efforts.

More on the Government Shutdown and Keeping Parks Open. Dispatches from District 48 – “I often criticize this President, but this is one area Trump should be applauded. I think the wall funding issue is a dumb reason to go into budget gridlock, particularly when he had 2 years of Republican Congresses to get this done, but given the fact of the shutdown he should be applauded for attempting to reduce its impact on ordinary Americans. President Obama, for all his reputation of caring and hope, was to my mind overly callous in explicitly trying to make the shutdown more painful for average people.” He still doesn’t understand what has been happening in Washington D.C. in anything other than overly simplified terms but this topic is his bread and butter.

NEVER CHANGE: Journos are fact checking Trump on the number of hamburgers he purchased for the Clemson football team. Greg P. – “They’re correcting his spelling mistake, too:

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Can you control your vehemence?

NYT Reveals FBI Retaliated Against Trump For Comey Firing. Mollie Hemingway – “A Friday expose from the New York Times reveals that the FBI investigation of Trump for alleged treason was little more than retaliation against the president for lawfully firing an incompetent and ethically challenged FBI director.”

“Admitting there is no actual evidence for their probe into whether Trump “worked for the Russians,” FBI officials instead cited their foreign policy differences with him, his lawful firing of bungling FBI Director James Comey, and alarm that he accurately revealed to the American public that he was told he wasn’t under investigation by the FBI, when they preferred to hide that fact.

… Just last month, CNN reported that top FBI officials opened an investigation into Trump after the lawful firing of Comey because Trump “needed to be reined in,” a shocking admission of abuse of power by our nation’s top law enforcement agency.

The latest Times report does provide more detail than these earlier reports, however, and none of it makes the FBI look good. In fact, it provides evidence of a usurpation of constitutional authority to determine foreign policy that belongs not with a politically unaccountable FBI but with the citizens’ elected president.

In sum, the framing of this New York Times article is either poorly conceived or outright disingenuous at every turn.

For one of the nation’s largest newspapers to suggest that this makes the president — and not the FBI — look bad actually validates two of Trump’s biggest complaints: the media are hopelessly biased, and there really is a “deep state” out to to overturn the 2016 election.

Backtracking Lies Worsening – REMINDER: The FBI Counterintelligence Operation into Donald Trump *DID NOT* Start After Comey Firing. sundance – it does go deeper. Here is an analysis of testimony.

In border fight, Democrats want ‘technological wall’ that won’t keep anybody out. Byron York – “The point, for those illegal immigrants, is not to enter the United States without being detected. It is to enter, be caught, and begin the asylum process that will allow them to stay, one way or the other.

“San Diego faced an intolerable situation in the 1980s. The border fence was a key part of the solution. Now, a congressman from San Diego is dead set against building a physical barrier to stop illegal crossings in other parts of the country the way it did in San Diego.

Peters reflects his party’s leadership and their determination to stop the construction of any more barriers on the border. But Democrats from Pelosi down still want to appear strong on border security. Now, they are advocating sensors and drones and cameras that would watch an unfenced border — while doing nothing to stop the flow of illegal immigrants.

Politicians and lies. neo – “To some extent, politics almost demands it, depending on how one defines “lie.” Is a bragging exaggeration a lie? Is an optimistic promise a lie? How exaggerated does it have to be before it becomes one, rather than mere hyperbole?

“Opinions are not lies, as long as the speaker really believes what he or she says (which is not always the case in politics or in life). Opinions can be incorrect, they can be based on faulty reasoning or faulty information, but as long as they are sincere you can’t call them lies. And yet so-called “fact checkers” do so on a daily basis.

Facts are facts, but sometimes competing information (Kellyanne Conway’s much-maligned “alternative facts”) is out there and it can be very difficult to ascertain what’s correct and what’s incorrect. So politicians constantly argue by citing one fact or another, or one statistic or another, that bolsters their own point of view. That’s only a lie if the facts are obviously wrong or made up.

I often hear that Trump lies far more than any other president. That’s not my perception, unless you count as lies a lot of things that aren’t, and/or a lot of things that are minor and inconsequential. The people who keep telling me that Trump lies so much are astounded and offended if I try to say that Obama lied as well; they just don’t see it that way. One can go to charts listing the lies of either or both to prove a point, but of course the charts almost always (maybe even always) represent partisan efforts to make one or the other look worse (for example, see this critique of one of the Times’ efforts). And I’m not interested in sheer numbers—it’s the subject matter and import of the lie that matters, not the quantity.

Which leads me to the conclusion that Obama’s lies were far worse than Trump’s.

Lying to one’s self is perhaps the worst ‘false witness’ sin. That is what happens when one twists and distorts reality to suit one’s fantasies. This top layer is often seen in the expression of judgments of others. Every day you can see this: ‘worst this’ or ‘evil that.’ When you can’t control the vehemence of your opinions of another, you cannot control anything.

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Plausible deniability?

Stupid New York Times tricks. Thomas Lifson – “By reporting awkward facts but burying them, the NYT is able to claim that its coverage is comprehensive, while sheltering readers from facts that counter its preferred narratives.”

“As most newspaper editors and writers understand, this means that only a small percentage of readers will ever see these key words, even though they are the most politically significant and currently relevant aspect of Palij’s story. It could easily have been in the lead paragraph, and almost certainly would have been prominently featured had the Obama administration made his deportation a priority. This hideous man had resisted deportation for 14 years, after all, so expelling him was not easily or quickly accomplished. It is an achievement that reflects well on President Trump.

To say that the majority of Times readers “harbor” anti-Trump sentiments is to understate the situation. The paper remains a practitioner of the same trick as it used to obscure the great historical crime that was as uncomfortable to its readers then as praiseworthy actions of President Trump are today. The fact that the Holocaust is central to both evasions brings the story full circle.

Peace is breaking out. Media won’t cover it. Don Surber – “Behind the talk of tariffs and trade deficits, the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula loomed. A war that began 68 years ago nears its end.

“Which is why the Fake News Media hides this good news. Democracy dies in darkness, and the American press is become darker than the ocean’s floor.

Border Wall Construction Continues. sundance – “With massive amounts of misinformation surrounding the southern border and the need for a border security wall, the following video has been produced. Pushing back against intentional media disinformation is something critical to supporting President Trump.”

There Is a Pony in the Mueller Heap of Dung. Clarice Feldman – “It is increasingly obvious that there is a pony in the heap of Mueller Trump-Russia dung, and the pony is a corrupt FBI and CIA covering up their unlawful conduct.”

“The New York Times, which has been desperately digging through the dung for years, finally found the pony: “No evidence has emerged publicly that Mr. Trump was secretly in contact with or took direction from Russian government officials.” Then they buried it as deep in the pile as they could in a story sourced to unnamed former law enforcement officials and “others familiar with the investigation.”

The story revealed that, as President Trump tweeted, “the corrupt former leaders of the FBI, almost all fired or forced to leave the agency for some very bad reasons, opened up an investigation on me, for no reason & with no proof, after I fired Lyin’ James Comey, a total sleaze.”

The Pony is not Russia – There Is No There There. The Pony is the hiding of deep-seated corruption in the intelligence community, FBI, and Department of Justice.

Trump Has the Democrats Cornered. Jim Daws – “No sooner had the Democrats taken back the majority in the House of Representatives than they proved their harshest critics correct – the party no longer concerns itself with the interests of the American people.

“While all this plays out, the Democrats will be all over the opposition media, declaring Trump a tyrant for having the audacity to secure the nation’s borders. It will be Trump Derangement Syndrome on parade as one wild-eyed leftist after another vehemently argues against what Americans can plainly see is common sense.

Trump’s greatest value is as a disruptor, and all this disruption is just too delicious, as it forces the Dems to play their losing hand.

This would also be a good time for the administration to get its communications act together and correct several fallacies the opposition media have ingrained into the public’s consciousness

Can the propaganda machine implement the adage that telling a big lie often enough can make it seem the truth? Do they have sufficient plausible deniability to maintain the narrative? For how long? How much damage will be done? 

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crying wolf – the world is doomed! we tell you again and again and again

How many times have the media predicted doom because of Trump, and how many times have they been dead wrong? Jack Hellner – “The purpose of the report was not to be objective news because anyone with a brain knows the shutdown will end soon. The purpose was to scare the public, damp down economic growth and destroy Trump.

“Why does the media continue to use the clearly partisan economist Mark Zandi who has been 100% wrong on so much as an expert and call him independent? The answer is because he provides them with garbage to attack Trump and Republican policies which is also their goal.

How many times has the media yelled doomsday since 2016?

The greatest threat to our prosperity, our freedom and our Republic are journalists who continually repeat Democrat talking points as if that were news and seeking to make the economy collapse by continuously predicting doom for the sole purpose of destroying Trump and electing Democrats. These journalists certainly aren’t interested in lifting up the economy as a whole, and that is a shame.

see also Trump Deserves Credit for China’s Changing Stance on Trade By Tony Shaffer. The mainstream economists only see tariffs as a tax. Trump sees them as a weapon. The economists don’t get it and won’t learn.

The Dems Who Cried ‘Wolf!’ Dov Fischer – “Three years of lies and smears are doing the anti-Trumpian hysterics and haters no good.

“If you keep wasting the time of grown-ups by falsifying alarms, one of these days when you have a real alarm to sound, the grown-ups will disregard you. That day has come for Democrats. After two years of sounding the alarum that the President is a Fascist, a Dictator, a Tyrant, a Nazi, Dementia-Ridden, a TraitorF – – –him, the President is a  M – th – – – u – c – e – (go ahead and buy the letters from Vanna, from De Niro, or from that newly elected trash mouth out of Detroit) the Left has lost its ability to stir emotion outside its own echo chamber. Have a bad name to call Trump? Ho-hum.

So that manifest lie about Trump became my Rosetta Stone for the Trump presidency even before he was elected in November 2016. It alerted me early that, for whatever the reason, the Democrats, the academia Left, Hollywood and Broadway, the Corrupt Left Media, and all the others of that cruel and viciously deceitful cabal had settled on a strategy that they would lie baldly and badly about Trump, fabricate the wildest falsehoods and accusations, call him the worst names, use every excuse to compare him to Hitler — even as it would be they who would leverage the Nazi technique of the Big Lie.

For two years the Left has been accusing the President of the craziest things imaginable.

Even as the Left counts Trump’s “Pinocchios,” while ignoring Pelosi’s and Schumer’s obvious lies in opposing a wall now that they all avidly supported as perfectly moral and necessary before Trump became President, it is they who have been lying about him 24/7 from the time he launched his Presidential bid.

Every day the Pelosi-Schumer insult factory will continue heaping invective his way, amplified by the Don Lemons, Chris Cuomos, Anderson Coopers, George Stephanopouli, Chuck Todds, Todd Chucks, and all the other such fungible characters of TV Land. However, those whom they most seek to influence — fair-minded people in the center — long ago have learned to tune them out. They have cried “Wolf!” too often, and they are poised to be out-foxed.

H.R. 1: Democrats Act to Strip State Powers Over Elections. J. Christian Adams – “If you thought the midterm elections had problems, wait until you learn about Nancy Pelosi’s plan.

“Democrats in Congress have announced their top legislative priority, and it isn’t health care, immigration, or taxes. Instead, they want to centralize power over elections in Washington, D.C. H.R. 1 is number one on the legislative agenda because it is the number one priority of House Democrats, leftist groups, deep-pocketed dark money, and those who use election process rules to help win elections — or at least to cause chaos.

The bill is a 571-page dreamscape of wild wishes and federal mandates on states. The Constitution decentralizes power over American elections and puts states in charge. H.R. 1 would undo that.

More Mueller madness. Scott Johnson – “In a rational world, this story would be understood as an exploding cigar. It reveals a scandal, but the scandal is located inside the FBI. What we have here is a graphic illustration of the forces against which President Trump has contended for the past two years (including the Times). They mean to remove him from office.

“The Times story exposes more than one scandal. It exposes the overlapping scandals of which Trump is the victim, not the perpetrator. They are the biggest scandals in American political history.

One does not need to be a clinician to get a handle on the madness that permeates the Times story. There is an utter lack of self-awareness. The actors here — the Times and their sources — share the understanding that the story reflects poorly on Trump. As Paul puts it, however: “If it’s true that the FBI undertook the investigation described by the Times, this tells us plenty about the FBI. It tells us nothing about Trump.”

CNN’s Anna Navarro Files Her Nails During Discussion About Innocent Americans Murdered by Illegal Aliens. Kemberlee Kaye – “Mind you, Navarro is what passes for a Republican and conservative at CNN and on The View.” A new poster girl …

“The clip perfectly encapsulates the current border wall debate. There are those who take seriously the murder of innocents on American soil at the hands of those who had no right or permission to be here. And then there are those who find this tragic news yawn and mockworthy.

The contempt is being used as a weapon, a point of argument. Is Fischer right and people will recognize the children crying wolf?

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hyperbole, undoing, reality, going to pot

Shutdown reaches the people-will-die stage. Don Surber – “People Will Die is the last-resort of the Democrat Party arguments.” … “The predictions are worthy of a global warmist.”

The great undoing continues. Scott Johnson – “Yesterday Pompeo gave a speech at the American University in Cairo. The speech was a sort of counterpart to Obama’s June 2009 speech in Cairo. Obama’s speech was a nauseating exercise in fake history, destructive diplomacy and strategic self-destruction. By contrast, Secretary Pompeo represents the voice of sanity. In substance he repudiated Obama’s speech and related strategic vision. Pompeo could not have been more blunt.

The Great Issue of Our Time. John Hinderaker – “is whether, as a people, we are too dumb to sustain a democracy. This question arises often; for me, most recently, upon seeing this Daily Mail headline: “Twitter user stuns the internet with math that proves one 18-inch pizza has more in it than TWO 12-inch helpings.”

Marijuana, mental illness, and crime. Paul Mirengoff – “According to Mother Jones’ Stephanie Mencimer, Berensen’s book “takes a sledgehammer to the promised benefits of marijuana legalization, and cannabis enthusiasts are not going to like it one bit.” Her discussion fully justifies this statement.”

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Why no skepticism critical inspection? Intellectual integrity too much of a burden?

Is traditional masculinity pathological? Luboš Motl – “when the umbrella organization standing above all U.S. psychologists explicitly says that “masculinity is pathological”, we’re supposed to think that everything is fine. Sorry, it’s not fine.”

to claim that life on Earth is pathological in general is insane – and irrational.

Why? Because the adjective “pathological” is ultimately a value judgement that must be made by somebody who is man-like.

The APA guidelines are a reflection of the cancer of the extreme left-wing politicized science that has already conquered many disciplines. The first ones included the humanities and some social sciences but psychology is relatively close to natural sciences which is why this particular trend is so disturbing.

Media’s Angry Response To President Trump’s Oval Office Speech Comes Up Short. Mollie Hemingway – “The Democrats’ theme for the evening was ‘facts, not fear.’ Many major media also adopted the same theme.”

“The coordinated talking point began hours if not days before the speech even aired, with CNN’s Alisyn Camerota saying yesterday morning, “Fact-checkers are eating their Wheaties and getting extra rest since they will be working overtime tonight to separate fact from fiction on this border situation.”

But when it came time to back up this talking point about factual inaccuracies, the media whiffed. Most of the alleged “fact” “checks” were instead critiques of opinions. Many critiqued things not included in Trump’s speech. And sometimes the “fact” “checks” dinged Trump for saying completely true things.

Checking facts is extremely important. It’s a vital function of journalism and one that was sorely missing for a good eight years of the Obama presidency. It’s not that journalists have over-corrected — a genuine return to fact-based reporting wouldn’t just be welcome but preferable. The problem is that they’re extremely confused about the difference between value assessments and facts. They also struggle with basic logic and reading comprehension.

And people trust media oblivious to the dripping hate and anger?

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