Archive for May, 2020

Besieged I tell you — besieged!

Matt Margolis: It’s Time for the Left to Stop Pretending Obama Was Scandal-Free – “How many scandals will it take for the left to admit that Barack Obama had the most corrupt presidency in U.S. history?”

Stephen Kruiser: The Morning Briefing: ‘OBAMAGATE!’ Monday Edition – “Obama is back in the daily news cycle, and this is probably the first time that the malignant narcissist isn’t happy about it.” Defending Biden against mounting evidence is one thing. Now it’s Obama and the evidence is in congressional hearing testimony and other documentation regarding the FBI, the DOJ, and the FISA courts. Then there’s the pandemic FUD mongering and economic warfare at the expense of the Bill of Rights to defend as well.

“As evidence mounts that the upper echelons of the Obama administration — include Obama himself — spent their final days spying and phone-tapping in an effort to ruin Michael Flynn and poison the entire Trump administration, the president and his confidantes are turning up the heat.
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Those of us here on the sane side of things know that the Obama administration was never sans the blemish of scandal as the stories have been told. They benefited from a press corps that spent eight years spraining their necks looking the other way.

The evidence that has emerged in the past week can’t be swept under the rug, especially with President Trump in command of the biggest bully pulpit on Earth.

Daniel Greenfield: Obamagate: President Trump Goes After Obama – “The treasonous investigators and their instigator become the investigated.” … “One man, not some nebulous organization or unaccountable bureaucracy, pushed the lever and decided to use the machinery of law enforcement and intelligence agencies to suppress the political opposition.”

“Investigations start by exposing, breaking down and then flipping the stooges, before working their way up the ladder to the bosses who gave the orders, and then the man at the top. The investigation formerly known as Spygate has been burning its way through the titular spies who did the dirty work.
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Steele has since testified that he not only knew that Hillary Clinton was in the loop, but that National Security Advisor Susan Rice had been briefed. Obamagate had linked together the figures empowered to conduct surveillance of political opponents with political figures in the White House. That’s how covert spying operations like Watergate work. The DOJ is meant to serve as a buffer against abuses like these.
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As I wrote three years ago, “Once Obama and his allies launched their domestic surveillance operation, they crossed the Rubicon. And there was no way back. They had to destroy President Trump or risk going to jail. The more crimes they committed by spying on the opposition, the more urgently they needed to bring down Trump. The consequences of each crime that they had committed spurred them on to commit worse crimes to save themselves from going to jail.”
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The tables are turning. And the question now becomes, will middle rank ex-feds be willing to go to jail to protect their bosses, will those bosses be willing to go to jail to protect cabinet members, and will they all be willing to go to jail to protect Barry? If Biden loses, so does the Obama Alumni Association.
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Obamagate is not just the reckoning the nation needs: it’s the reckoning that the rule of law deserves.

I&I Editorial: Media Find In Coronavirus A Crisis They Can’t Waste – “We can’t be the only ones who sense the glee with which the news about the body count, the Democrats’ wailing over the president’s handling of the crisis, and the “new normal” are delivered across our screens.” … “The coronavirus coverage goes beyond the “if it bleeds it leads” tenet of sensationalized media coverage. It’s a handy means for them to extend the cultural and political divides that have made the 50 states less united than they have been in any of our lifetimes.”

“If you doubt the power of the press, recognize that Gov. Ron DeSantis handled COVID-19 in Florida in excellent fashion, while Gov. Andrew Cuomo handled it nearly as badly as humanly possible, yet DeSantis has dropped in polls and Cuomo is at the height of popularity,” talk radio show host Ben Shapiro tweeted last week.
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Choose any issue, and there’s a media bias editorial waiting to be written. The legacy press is simply the Democratic Party’s Department of Propaganda

Tyler Durden: Trump Furious After NBC Apologizes For Chuck Todd’s Propaganda Edit Of Barr Interview – yeah, OK, another of those “pounce” “seize” overblown headlines, but … “Todd literally stole Barr’s line about ‘upholding the rule of law’ and flipped it around in a case of blatant propaganda. … Greg Price of the Daily Caller calls out the “blatantly dishonest” reporting by Todd.”

Lee Smith: Adam Schiff lied about the Trump investigation — and the media let him – “Last week, Acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell forced Democratic Congressman Adam Schiff’s hand. … They show exactly what you’d expect them to show: None of the former Obama administration officials who took to the airwaves immediately after Trump’s election to claim collusion had any evidence of it. … But what makes the transcripts significant is not what’s contained in them. Rather, it’s what they represent.”

“After Mueller filed his report last spring, CNN’s Jake Tapper said that “I don’t know anybody who got anything wrong.” Don’t expect anyone in the mainstream media to admit gross journalistic malpractice this time either. The tragic fact is that once-prestigious press organizations, including CNN as well as MSNBC, the New York Times and the Washington Post, weren’t fooled by the collusion hoax. They were an essential part of it.

Daily Caller News Foundation: Supreme Court rules encouraging illegal aliens to remain in U.S. is a crime – “unanimously upheld a federal statute that forbids encouraging illegal aliens to remain in the U.S. unlawfully in a decision Thursday.” … “The ruling by the nation’s highest court Thursday upholds the law. … The Supreme Court not only vacated the appeals court’s decision but also criticized the judges for “drastically” straying from judicial norms. … Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a liberal stalwart of the bench, wrote the high court’s opinion. … The decision brings to a close a court battle that lasted roughly 10 years.”

Victor Davis Hanson: Unbearable Truths About Our Current Political Moment – “What happens to a people when it can’t handle the truth?”

The chickens are coming home to roost …

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Why is the problem bigger than you might think.

Consider this headline: William Barr’s Perversion of Justice – New York Times, by Staff. It completely ignores the facts on the table. See Paul Mirengoff: An absurd and outrageous shot at Bill Barr or Ryan Saavedra: Democrat Law Professor Blasts Obama For False Statements About DOJ Dismissing Flynn Case then contrast and compare to the Washington Examiner …

Editorial: Travesty of justice finally ends for Michael Flynn – “The Flynn case is a stunning example of an abuse of power at the highest levels of the FBI, which was determined by any way possible to bring him down as part of an effort to damage Trump.”

Jason Killmeyer: Our Endangered Transfer of Power – “The 2020 election is fast approaching. If we end up with a landslide, we should be OK;” … “Our risk calculus is off. This is not the time or place in our history to rollout widespread changes to how Americans vote”

Clarice Feldman: January 5, 2017: A Day that Should Live in Infamy – “This week saw two major legal developments … Altogether they show a scandalous miscarriage of justice and media malpractice, which continues to this day, instigated by Barack Obama.”

“Once again, Obama makes a statement about law which is demonstrably false. In fact, not once to my recalling has he ever made a statement about the law that is correct.

As to the facts, you simply cannot count on media reports, so I will link for you the Government’s Motion to withdraw the case.

As you read it you will see that once specially appointed U.S. Attorney Jeff Jensen finally found the documents long hidden from the defense and court in the bowels of the FBI and DoJ, the government had little choice but to withdraw the case.

A number of analyses — by people who do know enough not to simply rewrite Obama press dictation — provide an accurate and chilling account of the persecution of Flynn.

Monica Showalter: Obama is panicking— “A huge Obama White House effort to spy on a political opponent and prevent him from serving in public office is slowly being exposed.” … “Sundance over at Conservative Treehouse has a very deep dive (it took me an hour to read it, but it never got boring) into the roots of Obama’s rage and why he’s running scared and starting to fight back.” but look at how he and his cohort fights back … e.g.

Charles Hurt: ‘Demand Justice’ Fight Back — Against Judges Who Like the Constitution – “The baseless accusation is even more audacious for anyone with the faintest memory of the decades-long onslaught these people have waged against an independent judiciary in America.”

Rutger Bregman: The real Lord of the Flies: what happened when six boys were shipwrecked for 15 months – “When a group of schoolboys were marooned on an island in 1965, it turned out very differently from William Golding’s bestseller” … “In hindsight, the secret to the book’s success is clear. Golding had a masterful ability to portray the darkest depths of mankind. Of course, he had the zeitgeist of the 1960s on his side, when a new generation was questioning its parents about the atrocities of the second world war.”

“For centuries western culture has been permeated by the idea that humans are selfish creatures. That cynical image of humanity has been proclaimed in films and novels, history books and scientific research. But in the last 20 years, something extraordinary has happened. Scientists from all over the world have switched to a more hopeful view of mankind. This development is still so young that researchers in different fields often don’t even know about each other.

Andrew Gilbertson: Blinded by Doomsday Predictions Masquerading as Science – “we have a serious problem with something masquerading as science: the manipulation of facts and data to create fearful predictive models.”

“It is important to emphasize that these ill fated prognostications were not made by carnival hucksters or Times Square loons in sandwich boards; they were the work of highly respected scientists and statisticians, widely publicized in the national media. All were taken seriously at the time.
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We need to respect science, but we must stop blindly accepting scientists’ unproven doomsday predictions.

George Neumayr: The Two Popes Problem – “When Pope Francis grants an interview, he makes news by subverting Church teaching. When Pope Benedict XVI gives one, he makes news by upholding it. Therein lies the two popes problem about which the media can’t keep complaining..”

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Scandal Free? Big lies + fake news = mythology

I & I Editorial Board: Where Does Lt. Gen. Flynn Go To Get His Reputation Back? – “It’s time to restore this good man’s good name, tarnished by an illegitimate and illegal investigation by Deep State insiders, and make just restitution for his significant financial losses. It’s the least America can do.”

Ernest S. Christian: ‘A Colossal Public Policy Calamity’ – “How did it come to pass that something as patently wrongheaded and predictably calamitous as the nationwide one-size-fits-all 2020 “lockdown” of America could occur?” … “The lockdown arose from the synergistic co-joinder of two contagions: The COVID-19 virus that can kill the body and the fear virus that clouds the mind.”

“The movers and shakers, the crisis makers, were those who created the fear virus with their now suspect but then hysteria-inducing predictions that the COVID-19 virus would kill upward of a quarter-million Americans, or many more, and those in the media who relentlessly spread the hysterical fear virus into every nook and cranny of the nation.

In that sense, the “deciders” were, respectively, the expert epidemiologists in the Deep State science bureaucracy who, even if wrong in their predictions, were almost certainly acting in good faith and the media mindbenders who almost certainly were not, but who nevertheless function as an extra-constitutional, unelected and largely unqualified fourth branch of American government.

Very quickly, overbearing and overreacting governors and mayors closed schools, churches and businesses even in areas far away from COVID-19 hotspots – so great was the irrational fear. Fear stalked the vast prairies as well as the rapidly emptying streets in the cities.

Katie Pavlich: ‘Scandal Free’ Obama Strikes Again – “It’s one of the biggest lies in leftist media and insider Washington politics” … “new information about the FBI’s unsubstantiated criminal investigation into General Michael Flynn proves Obama was engaged in scandalous abuses of power right up until the moment he left the presidency.”

<p”>Kaylee McGhee: Fake news isn’t a problem as long as it’s anti-Trump – “A deceptively edited video of Vice President Mike Pence is making the rounds, so it’s time for a fact check: … Any claim to the contrary is fake news spread by people unwilling to do a little research.” … “Kimmel was ultimately forced to acknowledge his mistake. His apology naturally included a not-so-subtle jab at the Trump administration. Alas, what more can we expect from people whose instinctual anti-Trump mindset leads them to actively create and spread fake news?”

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Witches brew

David P. Goldman: Don’t Forget Why the Deep State Targeted Mike Flynn – “Among all the heads and former heads of the 17 agencies that make up the US intelligence community, Flynn was the only one who had objected to the disastrous covert intervention in Syria and foreseen its baleful consequences. Obama fired him, but Donald Trump hired him”

Thomas Lifson: Dems respond to Flynn exoneration with the Big Lie strategy – “The biggest political scandal in American history finally is unwinding as documents are declassified and prosecutors and grand juries do their work.” … “The Democrats’ response is to double down and rely on the brute force of their media dominance to peddle a lie that, if repeated often enough, will be accepted as truth.”

David Catron: Dem Governors Face Dozens of Lockdown Lawsuits – “All have used the pandemic as a pretext for curtailing constitutional rights.” … “These governors behave as if they recognize no legal boundaries. Consequently, the voters have sought to correct them.”

“All of these defendants have four things in common: They are Democratic governors, they have used the COVID-19 pandemic as a pretext to arrogate illegitimate authority, none will voluntarily relinquish their newfound power, and all have committed multiple violations of the Constitution. By the standards of the above-quoted aphorism, all have been found sorely wanting in the kind of character intrinsic to genuine leaders. All deserve the utter contempt of the voters who elected them to office.

Bode Lang: The Five Worst Types of Virtue-Signaling – “Virtue-signaling is one of the lowest forms of opportunism, but not all attempts are equal.”

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encompassment

Alan Moran: The Lockdown Strategy Called to Account – “From these estimates and viewed in hindsight, the policy response is excessive.” This analysis does not put a value on all the moral preening going on, though.

John Tierney: What Do We Clap For When We Clap For Government? – “The desire for communion with our fellows is inborn—but substituting allegiance to government for that urge has its perils.”

“We’re all reveling in the joy of “encompassment,” as the economist Daniel Klein terms this primal yearning to share an emotion that involves everyone around us. When we sing in church or cheer at a football game, we tap into that same feeling experienced by ancient hunter-gatherers as they chanted and danced around the campfire.
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I hate to think of the price to be paid long after the clapping stops. That bill will encompass us all, too.

John Kass: The Kavanaugh-Biden double standard and an appalling lack of curiosity over Michael Flynn – “Those two stories, the one about Biden and Kavanaugh and the other about Mike Flynn, protrude from the skin like jagged bones, and painfully tell you what you need to know.”

Eileen F. Toplansky: Big Tech is Strangling Us – “How ironic that the 1984 iconic advertisement that Apple used to introduce the Macintosh computer “played on imagery from George Orwell’s 1984 novella [sic] presenting Apple as rebels fighting a technocratic elite.” … “How things have changed as the tech giants have morphed into near-totalitarian giants controlling far too much of our lives. Like serfs, we bend to their will or are punished.”

“Moreover, state and federal governments are now preparing to hire “contact tracers.” Also known as “disease detectives,” contact tracers notify people by phone, e-mail, or social media platforms [my emphasis] that they may have had “sustained contact” to someone who has the coronavirus. … Given those who sponsor this program, is it prudent to inquire whether this information can eventually be used against Americans?

sundance: BREAKING – DOJ Finally Releases Less Redacted 2nd Scope Memo (Aug 2, 2017) – Still Missing 3rd Scope Memo (Oct 20,2017)… – “The second scope memo (full pdf here) authorized Robert Mueller to target Carter Page, Paul Manafort, George Papadopoulos, Michael Flynn, and an unknown entity (Richard Gates, Michael Cohen, Michael Flynn Jr. likely possibilities).”

“The scope memos are important because when contrast against known evidence of investigative corruption the scope memos show how targets were selected by the Mueller team and approved by Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein. Additionally, the scope memos show what actions Mueller’s corrupt investigative authorities were looking into.

John Hinderaker: Lawsuit Challenges Minnesota Shutdown Order – “The complaint is embedded in full below. I think it poses a formidable challenge to the governor’s blatantly discriminatory and unauthorized exercise of executive power.”

Mike Wendland: Will there be resentment if I travel in my RV this summer? – “we think there will be resentment in some places about RV travel this summer because of fears over COVID-19. As we write this in early May of 2020, it’s very clear that some places will be not too happy to see RVers coming into their communities. Is some places, unnecessary travel is being discouraged by health and government leaders for the foreseeable future.”

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Reality. Does it exist?

Jessica Curtis: Who Is Out Of Touch With Reality? – “As a Republican, I have become accustomed to regularly being accused of ignoring the facts, putting party ahead of country, and willingly supporting policies that will harm, if not outright kill, my fellow Americans.”

“What Murphy said is outrageous and obviously not accurate. However, that is not the worst of it. No, what is even more wrong is that fully 60% of Democrats polled agreed with the senator. Let that sink in. Well over half of Democrats believe the president is more to blame for our situation than the Chinese. This is unhinged thinking. This truly does meet the test of putting party ahead of anything else.

Bruce Thornton: Our Dangerous Illusions About Risk – “The most formidable risk we are facing isn’t the coronavirus.” … “The coronavirus pandemic and the draconian lock-down responses to it have given us an object lesson in just how irrationally we evaluate and compare risk.”

“despite those gaps in data, a policy has been implemented that has so far cost an estimated $7 trillion dollars, lowered GDP by nearly 5%, thrown 30 million out of work, crashed the oil market, and dropped the Dow Jones by over 10,000 points, though half of that loss has been restored as of now.
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Nor is it just about dollars and cents. Deeming some medical procedures “non-essential” has not only beggared and shuttered hospitals, but put people at risk for sickness, disability, or death later on.
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We are witnessing a classic case of responding to panic and hysteria rather than calculating and comparing risks rationally.

Victor Davis Hanson: Do the Media Even Exist? – “The media exists in name only but not in fact.” … “The crisis instead is that they are now almost always wrong, and predictably wrong because they are lazy and biased—and they deny it to the point of self-delusion.”

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So many don’t seem to care about the path they trod and where it leads

A Triple Play at the Quadrant today: Peter Smith: A Plague of Authoritarian Fat-Headedness – “The blunderbuss policy instituted by the Australian government and by most governments was reactive and overblown. No proper and rigorous consideration was given to the consequences; to the joblessness, to the misery and to the health and wellbeing problems it would cause.” – Augusto Zimmermann: State Power, Control and COVID-19 – “sometimes I ask myself how can any rational person not see that the Wuhan virushas been ingeniously used to scare, brainwash and control entire populations, even to the point of what amounts to virtual house arrest.” … “Suddenly, our media are no longer questioning power, but colluding with power that takes away our fundamental rights and freedoms.” … “we are already living with all key hallmarks of a police state.” – Glenn Fahey: Our Closed Schools’ Herd Immunity to Evidence – “School closures in the crisis were not driven by a careful evaluation and consideration of available evidence, but by politics with a nod to ‘medical advice’ — which in reality soon admitted there was no reason to keep children out of school.”

Derek Hunter: If ‘Congress Shall Make No Law…’ Why Can Governors? – “governors across the country are ignoring or suspending almost every one of those rights enumerated at the top of the Bill of Rights, with little to no pushback from the press, which just happens to be the only part of the first two amendments not under assault.” … “Governors have declared coronavirus emergencies and wiped clean the rights our nation was founded for the purpose of putting those rights beyond the reach of government.” … “These suspensions were not done by vote; they were done with the stroke of a pen.”

Jazz Shaw: Cancel culture warriors still trying to cancel Masterpiece Cakeshop – “It’s now been eight years since liberal activists began their campaign to attempt to drive Masterpiece Cakeshop owner Jack Phillips out of business” … SCOTUS ruling of no concern to lower courts in yet another harassment lawsuit.

“Sadly, Phillips is hardly the only business owner to be targeted in this fashion and the tactics are almost always identical. The left identifies a perceived “enemy” of progressive values and tries to drive them out of business. And sometimes there isn’t even an aggrieved party to claim damages.

Clarice Feldman: Help, Officer… I’m Being Murdered by an Unmasked Gunman – “these restrictions set by the governors, and sometimes mayors or county chairmen, do violate our constitutional rights to free speech, assembly, due process, religion, and against takings. In the past, courts have permitted some limits in exigent circumstances, but for limited periods of time and when the government could prove after a hearing which afforded due process (testing the evidence) that no other, less restrictive means were available to deal with an emergency.”

“Attorney General William Barr has warned that although governments had the right to impose “reasonable and temporary restrictions’ during times of emergency, they must justify those restrictions as truly necessary and ensure there are not other ways to address the interests that are less burdensome.”

Some governors and mayors expanded and extended the restrictions, and the arbitrary nature of these became apparent.
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This kind of crazy is leading to more than protests. Overreaching and lunatic directives are inviting injunctive relief litigation.

Kai Kupferschmidt: Study claiming new coronavirus can be transmitted by people without symptoms was flawed – “Given how fast data are coming out amid the growing global crisis, it’s good to read even peer-reviewed papers with some extra caution at the moment” … “The fact that the paper got it wrong doesn’t mean transmission from asymptomatic people doesn’t occur. Fauci, for one, still believes it does.” This is another cornerstone supporting aggressive measures that looks to be much weaker than originally thought.

Joseph Curl: COVID-19 turning out to be huge hoax perpetrated by media – “When the postmortem is done on the media’s coverage of COVID-19 (and it will be), it will be clear that the virus was no Black Plague — it’s not even the flu on a bad year.” … “the media should be held accountable for telling us otherwise before they knew the facts. … But even if they do, asymptomatic transmission likely plays a minor role in the epidemic overall, WHO says.”

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A terrible path

Riley Snyder: Judge rejects conservative group’s attempt to block planned all-mail primary – “The Court finds that Defendants’ interests in protecting the health and safety of Nevada’s voters and to safeguard the voting franchise in light of the COVID-19 pandemic far outweigh any burden on Plaintiffs’ right to vote, particularly when that burden is premised on a speculative claim of voter fraud resulting in dilution of votes,” – This is a judgment that does not cite law or precedent but instead depends upon the judge’s future fears that have no founding in fact or reality. Abolition of rights should require a rather higher standard.

I & I Editorial Board: The Flynn Revelations Reveal A Criminal Conspiracy At The FBI – “These are not mere procedural quibbles, but profound questions about the integrity and legality of the FBI’s investigations into key officials in the incoming Trump administration,” … “These, it’s clear, are the real crimes. Not the imaginary collusion of Trump and his aides, including Flynn, with the Russians.”

David Horowitz: Malignant Hypocrisy – “The Democrats’ lynching of Brett Kavanaugh.” … “The disruptions were a strategic effort to create an alternative narrative for the proceedings themselves” … “Only in a severely disfigured political environment could these racist attacks on the Republican committee members, and defenses of a mob attack on congressional proceedings not be regarded with outrage and disgust.” The reference is the Tara Reade contrast.

Joseph Hippolito: The Roman Globalist Church – “Pope Francis accelerates Catholicism’s descent into humanist utopianism.” … “The letter conclusively proves that Francis is transforming the Catholic Church into another non-governmental organization. In the process, he is destroying the church’s identity and credibility.”

“When questioned by Pontius Pilate, Jesus said that his kingdom was not of this world. Yet as Sachs demonstrates, Catholicism is trying to gain the whole world by being like the world. By doing so, the church is losing its own soul.

David Catron: Blue States Become Laboratories of Despotism – “Democratic officials are conducting dangerous experiments with your civil liberties.” … “It’s obvious why these Democratic governors refuse to lift their job-killing lockdowns, despite clear indications that their ostensible goal of “flattening the curve” has been achieved. The actual point of the exercise has little or nothing to do with public health. … They don’t care how many lives they ruin. Nor do they give a damn if their actions are constitutional. They assume the voters are too stupid to see the despotic impulses that lie beneath their affected empathy.”

John Hinderaker: The CDC Is AWOL – “Why did the CDC go out of its way to disseminate less information that is highly relevant to assessing the current epidemic? I can’t think of a lot of different answers to that question. In the current emergency, CDC has shown itself to be one more on a long list of dysfunctional government agencies.”

neo: More on Flynn. And still more. “As terrible as the Deep State’s actions against Flynn (and Trump) have been, I have come to a point of cynicism so deep that I believe the majority of Americans (or at least a very large number) who hear about them will either ignore them, applaud them, justify them, or excuse them, and we will slide further and further down this terrible path.”

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