April 24, 2017: Fantasy and reality

Rowan Scarborough reports: Democrats cling to intel dossier riddled with fiction in desperate attempt to take down Trump – “An anti-Donald Trump “dossier” created by a former British spy and financed by Democratic-linked money has significant detractors: the people accused of crimes in a supposed Trump-Russia conspiracy.”

The 35-page dossier by Mr. Steele has taken on critical importance in recent weeks for Democrats in Washington. They cite its accusations without corroboration as the reason for a special commission to investigate Mr. Trump and his aides for a supposed role in Russia’s hacking of Democratic Party email servers.

But there is independent evidence that Mr. Steele’s story is wrong.

Of the dossier, the former diplomat said, “There is stuff in there that just defies logic. Lots of it.”

Today, the Steele creation is cited by Democrats trying to get Congress to appoint a special commission and by some liberal news websites that contend it is true.

Robert Knight picks up on another issue where Fake News is being used by the Left. Voter fraud oughta be a crime – “Undermines fair and honest elections.” The Governor of Virginia provides the case study.

Joseph Stalin is credited with observing that, “It’s not the people who vote that count, it’s the people who count the votes.”

Over the last two decades the left has been changing both the rules of our election process and America’s demographics to suit their political agenda.

A perfect example is Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s brazen attempt to get more than 200,000 convicted felons onto the state’s voter rolls in time for the last election. Undaunted after his slapdown by the state supreme court, the governor recently vetoed six common-sense election integrity bills sent to his desk.

Once committed, vote fraud cannot be undone. The only sensible approach is to take measures to prevent it in the first place.

Vice President Pence’s commission on voting integrity will have the opportunity to ensure that our electoral system safeguards the right of U.S. citizens to have fair and honest elections.

Another case study is about the takedown of Fox News. Cheryl K. Chumley describes the third push: Sean Hannity, Fox star, vows legal action against ‘serial harasser’ – “Over the weekend, another woman, Debbie Schlussel, came forward to accuse another Fox News host — Sean Hannity — of sexual harassment. Insert collective groan here.”

But here’s the backstory, just the same: Schlussel, a former frequent face on Fox and on Hannity’s show, went on Today’s Pat Campbell show just recently and said, while in Detroit with Hannity on a previous occasion, he repeatedly asked her to come back to his hotel room. She said she declined, and as a result, Hannity never invited her back on his show.

But Hannity, unlike fellow former Fox star Bill O’Reilly, who reportedly paid out $13 million to various female sexual harassment accusers over the years, isn’t reaching for his wallet. Rather, he’s turned toward his legal team.

there’s also this: No matter how you slice it, Fox News has suffered a major public relations ding in recent months. And it’s going to take quite a while for the cable outlet to recover and reemerge as the place not just conservatives, but traditional family advocates, go to get their news. If ever.

This is, of course, the age-old weapon long used by vindictive womyn. Despite all the rhetoric about equality from the feminist contingent, the Title IX college ‘late’ regret’ allegations accepted without due process to destroy men, the brouhaha about the Vice President’s sensible chaperon policies, and the teacher rape student cases, implication and innuendo and questionable accusation by womyn to take down men is as old as the hills. From Ailes to O’Reilly to, now, Hannity, there is a pattern of assault against figurehead conservative media that speaks for just how ugly the Left can be. Hannity is saying that it’s time to change tactics and no longer just buy it off as a matter of convenience. It is time to fight back.

It appears that O’Reilly may be planning on doing so as well. He may also be looking at trends where viewers are eschewing cable for direct I’net feed and choosing the moment to ride that wave. See Ned Barnett about Justice for Bill O’Reilly – “O’Reilly’s case is a microcosm of a trend in America that the “wronged” woman must always be right, and the “wronging” man must always be wrong.”

Renee Garfinkel provides an example of analysis beginning to realize there is a new world of strategists on the stage. Trump’s tweets: Distraction or strategy? – “President should focus on terror, national security, domestic policies.” Note the ‘should’ as a bias indicator. The tag line indicates an old paradigm focus rather than a look at trying to figure out what actually is. But there are glimmers of reality in the essay.

When a president shoots himself in the foot, the entire country suffers a self-inflicted wound.

Famously impulsive and distractible, the impact of President Trump’s personal foibles and flaws is exaggerated by a staff wholly lacking in government experience. According to some observers, this confluence of factors resulted in the embarrassing display of incompetence that was the “Repeal and Replace” health care debacle.

Other, more cynical Washington watchers see it differently. They detect deliberate strategy, not incompetence, behind Trump’s apparently self-inflicted wounds.

Take the Russian investigation. The executive branch of government should be as motivated as Congress to uncover – or put to rest – questions about Russian attempts to influence U.S. and other democratic elections around the world. But instead of cooperating, Trump changed the subject by tweeting a bogus accusation of Obama and wiretapping.

If they are strategies, Trump’s techniques of deflection and diversion have been pretty effective so far. Congressional and media resources are busily engaged with them. In the meantime, the press has inadequately attended to serious, difficult issues, such as foreign policy.

Using the Russian allegations as a case study is also interesting. The tweet about “Obama and wiretapping” has been shown to be anything but bogus and they did turn the attention from bogus Trump collusion allegations (see story above) to actual governmental spying on political opponents.

The world is a dangerous place, and the U.S. can ill afford distractions and lack of focus in the Oval Office.

The president owes the American people a plan.

If Garfinkle was listening to what has been said and done rather than preaching about what he thinks should be, he’d know where the distractions are coming from and what the plan is. If he was at all aware, he’d know that “Famously impulsive and distractible” was a false ad hominem meme and that “a staff wholly lacking in government experience” is quite at odds with actual performance. There is an indicator for just how far off base Garfinkle and his compatriots really are. It is in the polling of Trump voters, even the reluctant ones, who are showing significant acceptance that the new President is indeed getting the job done. (see Poll: 96% of Trump Supporters Would Vote for Him Again, Win Popular Vote)

Byron York: Trump’s 100 days: An executive success – “During last year’s campaign, Trump spoke frequently of all the things he would do almost immediately upon entering the Oval Office.”

By the last weeks of the campaign, Trump actually dialed back some of his promises. On October 22, he traveled to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania to announce his “Contract with the American Voter,” which formalized his pledges for the first 100 days.

The “Contract” was a single piece of paper. The front listed 18 actions Trump would take under his executive authority as president, and the back listed ten pieces of legislation he would introduce in Congress.

Now, three months into the Trump administration, the front and the back of the Contract are two very different stories.

On the executive action front, Trump has kept a significant number of his promises:

But the back page of the Contract is a different story. Unlike many of his speeches, Trump was careful not to promise legislative success. “I will work with Congress to introduce the following broader legislative measures and fight for their passage with the first 100 days of my administration,” he said in the Contract

But it is precisely in the legislative area that the 100 day mark is such an unrealistic measure. Congress acts on its own schedule. Truth be told, next January, on the occasion of Trump’s first year in office, if he has passed either a full-scale Obamacare repeal and replace measure or a major tax reform measure, that would be a reasonably good legislative record for a first year.

Roger Kimbal takes a look at Trump vs. Obama: A Study in Contrasts – “A full recitation of the differences between Barack Obama and Donald Trump would fill a book.”

There is not, so far as I have been able to determine, anything similar in Donald Trump’s makeup. His approach to problems, to events generally, is less ideological than pragmatic. “What’s the right thing to do in this particular case?” That seems to be his cynosure. You might not like the answers he gives, but it is easy to see that they come not from a previously adopted program or ideology but from an ad hoc response to the case at hand. Critics call that “confusion” or “inconsistency” or “contradiction.” I’m not sure those categories have much purchase in this context.

In 2014, Obama made headlines when he traded five senior Taliban leaders held captive in Guantanamo Bay for the release of Bowe Robert Bergdahl … Donald Trump, through diplomatic intervention with Egyptian President al-Sisi when he visited Washington earlier this month, quietly secured the release of the Egyptian-American charity worker Aya Hijazi, her Egyptian husband, and four other humanitarian workers who had been held for three years by Egyptian authorities.

Mark the difference.

Obama ordered the liberation of terrorists to secure the release of an anti-American Army deserter whose desertion cost the lives of at least six Army soldiers who had been sent to look for him. Trump hears about the plight of a U.S. national, uses a behind-the-scenes diplomatic initiative as an occasion to secure her release, and celebrates it at the White House.

The moral is that, for The New York Times, Donald Trump is unable to perform a humanitarian act. Everything he does must be filtered through the lens of left-wing political animus.

As we approach Trump’s hundredth day in office, however, I am happy to say that I sense a change in the anti-Trump dynamic. The anti-Trump venom is as widespread and hysterical as ever. But as the days go by and Trump governs not as Hitler but as a deliberate executive, toting up victories here, setbacks there, rain checks and extenuations and opportunities, more and more people will say, “This guy is the real deal. He gets things done. He delivers on his promises. He really is making America great again.” The effect of that sentiment will be to marginalize the mainstream media.

John Hinderaker picks up on The Associated Press Interviews President Trump – “the more I have listened to Trump and, especially, read transcripts of his speeches and interviews, the more I am impressed by the fact that if you look past his gee-whiz real estate developer style and his generally-overlooked implicit self-deprecation, what Trump is telling us is usually very smart.”

Scott Adams was prescient.

Maybe ‘The Hero’ is back. Read Clint Eastwood to Direct Film on Heroes Who Stopped ISIS-Inspired Train Attack in Paris by Melissa Mullins – “Forget calling him a Hollywood director. Clint Eastwood is quickly earning the title of America’s director.”

Meanwhile, the effort to re-write history is underway. Jazz Shaw reports that New Orleans begins tearing down some Confederate history – “Somehow I don’t think this story is going to draw as much press attention as the fights over the Confederate Battle Flag of the past couple years, but you’ll quickly see some parallels.” This is part of an effort to personalize a created opponent to obfuscate an ideological fantasy.

There is something inherently destructive and short-sighted about these efforts to whitewash our history (if you’ll pardon the phrase.) I spent some time stationed outside of New Orleans when I was in the navy and had the chance to see and photograph several of the monuments under discussion. (When I was there, the Liberty Monument was still in its original location right in the middle of Canal Street. It was later moved.) These are long standing memorials to a controversial but still important and very real part of our history. They should definitely spark civil discussions about the nation and how the past shaped who we were and the journey to come. Removing them because you find the nation’s history offensive is shallow and does a disservice to the generations to come. But it’s the path that New Orleans has now chosen, so we’ll have to rely on photographs to remember them in the future.

Jazz also describes a desecration of art in NYC: Fearless Girl and a load of bull – “it once again all comes back to context and the infinitely variable responses we have to art.” It is another example of picking at symbols to promote an ideological fantasy whether it is removing them, altering them, or something else. Maybe they need to turn the bull around to face the other way?

On Democrats and the support for lawlessness and anarchy is a Nevada Representative. Are violent demonstrations acceptable political speech? Titus thought so – “Rep. Dina Titus last week said violent protests on college campuses are responses to Donald Trump’s presidency and proposed budget. She also included violent protests in a list of ways people are “coming together” to oppose Trump.” For where this leads, take a look at Venezuela’s socialist hell.

Speaking of Venezuela, the Pope steps in it again. Robert Spencer reports that Pope Francis calls refugee centers concentration camps – “The Pope continues to exhort Europeans to commit civilizational suicide, and doesn’t hesitate to shame them into it by claiming it’s their Christian duty.”

Except for that little matter of the Nazis putting people in concentration camps in order to work them to death or murder them outright. But what need does the Pope have for such petty details?

“Leave them; they are blind guides. And if a blind man leads a blind man, both will fall into a pit.” (Matthew 15:14)

“Pope Francis called refugee centers concentration camps. A Jewish group says there’s no comparison,” by Cleve R. Wootson Jr., Washington Post, April 23, 2017

David Prentice provides a retrospective on The Bush Family Conundrum – “To this day, I am uncertain how to see the Bush family.”

This brings me to the biggest problem they had (and have): they never understood the nature and character of their political opponents. They never comprehended what the Democratic Party became and stood for as it lurched to the left. They didn’t care to realize that these were nasty ideological leftists who were not just in a simple disagreement with them. They likely never read the sick tomes of Howard Zinn, nor understood how the left used his work. They never understood the evil of Saul Alinsky, and how the left gained and kept political power. While the left was, and is, at war with us (the right), the Bush family appeased it.

In a word, they were naïve.

Trump just showed us how to win: have a vision, be unafraid to communicate it, and know just how nasty your opponents really are. Fight them. Conservatives, it’s time to move on from the Bush family, and go back to Reagan’s vision of a great America. Throw out your timidity, communicate as if your lives depended on it, keep your promises, and defeat leftist tyranny.

If we don’t, we won’t have much left to conserve.

There is an education goin’ on.

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