Category: New Posts

unknown-2-h_2017.jpg

Iger for President? DISNEY Political Cat-and-Mouse Game…


The Hollywood exec won’t rule out a 2020 run and recently weighed in on gun control and immigration. Still, says one skeptical politico, “When he shows up in Iowa, let me know.”

Officially, Walt Disney Co. CEO Bob Iger is not running for president. At least not yet. The 2020 election may feel eons away, but the Des Moines International Airport will soon start crowding with candidate wannabes, and while Iger has plenty of time to make up his mind, the clock is ticking and the whispers will only grow louder.

While Iger, 66, hasn’t explicitly said he’s interested, he also hasn’t ruled himself out, which sets him apart from Sens. Al Franken and Chris Murphy, who recently have taken themselves out of the hypothetical running.

Those who know and work with Iger in Hollywood say he is seriously considering a presidential bid, which would be perfectly timed with his plans to step down as Disney CEO in 2019. One fellow media titan tells THR that Iger would be a great candidate if he decides to run but stops short of saying he is encouraging him to do so. Iger told THR in June 2016 that “a lot of people” have urged him to run for office, though that was a political lifetime ago.

The Iger option may be stoking enthusiasm in some quarters of the entertainment business, but outside its media bubble, Democratic strategists desperately seeking a way to reclaim the White House from Donald Trump are less sure how serious Iger is about running and, if he is, whether he could be a credible candidate for the party’s nomination in 2020. (Although maybe that’s not what he has in mind: The New York Times recently reported that Iger no longer is registered as a Democrat.)

“Success in business can be a compelling attribute, but most important in the wake of Trump will be to demonstrate a passion for doing good that can inspire people again,” says Brian Fallon, Hillary Clinton’s campaign press secretary. “And, for anyone seeking the Democratic nomination, certainly a specific, bold commitment to progressive values.”

Joe Trippi, who ran Howard Dean’s 2004 presidential campaign, warns against confusing trial balloons with active candidacies. “When [Iger] shows up in Iowa, let me know,” he says.

At a Vanity Fair conference Oct. 3, Iger looked visibly uncomfortable when writer Nick Bilton polled the audience on whether the superstar CEO should run. After a divided response, Iger guaranteed that his wife, Willow Bay, dean of the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, was not on the side cheering for the idea. It was a canny way of confirming that the topic has at least been broached within the Iger household while withholding any details of what actually has been discussed. To be clear, no reporter has been able to get Iger to say whether he wants to be president, including The Times‘ Jim Rutenberg, who cornered Iger at a cocktail party after the panel but couldn’t get the exec to say more than he did onstage. (Iger did not respond to requests to comment.)

Perhaps the biggest reason to take an Iger candidacy seriously is that no one thought the man currently occupying the Oval Office had any shot, either. And Iger is not the first media mogul to toy with the idea of running for president: Michael Bloomberg weighed a run in 2016 shortly after returning to his financial information empire after 12 years of serving as mayor of New York.

And Iger of late has begun sounding more like a politician, with strong statements on issues like gun control and immigration. On Sept. 5, he released a statement calling Trump’s plan to end the DACA immigration program a “cruel and misguided decision.” At press time, he’s the only CEO of a publicly traded media company to denounce Harvey Weinstein.

Symone Sanders, who served as press secretary for the Bernie Sanders campaign, compares Iger’s steps into political terrain to his ABC network’s late-night host Jimmy Kimmel, who recently crusaded against the Graham-Cassidy health care bill. “I don’t think Jimmy Kimmel wants to run for president,” she says. “He’s just a good person.”

And former CNN U.S. president Jonathan Klein cautions that media executives — even ones who run sprawling entertainment empires that touch nearly every aspect of consumers’ lives — do not have the same name recognition and cultural awareness as TV stars. “Maybe Adam Levine could run,” he says, “because The Voice is so popular.”

This story first appeared in the Oct. 18 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.



Source link

Goodbye, Columbus… at Least for Now


Austin, Texas city officials voted to completely replace Columbus Day with Indigenous People’s Day. They voted to remove Columbus Day from city calendars calling for public schools to teach that Columbus is not a positive role model. The resolution says that honoring Christopher Columbus’ role in history promotes values of intolerance and violence. Those words caused me to wonder if Columbus’ values really promoted intolerance and violence, and how his values compared with the indigenous people of America.

To make the statement, “Christopher Columbus’s role in history promotes values of intolerance and violence” seemed to me a bold and unprovable prejudicial statement. Intolerance and violence exists, and has existed in every society all over the world throughout all time. 

With that understanding, I concluded that promoting values of violence and intolerance was probably not what changing the name of the holiday was really about. I still wanted to research which of the two, Columbus or Native Americans, were more violent and intolerant than the other, but I suspected Austin’s city council was more interested in changing history than trying to define Native Americans as less violent and intolerant. That being the case, Austin’s city council is at the very least perpetuating intolerance, and for some maybe even inciting violence.

It requires very little reading to discover high levels of intolerance within many of the Native American nations that occupied this continent during Columbus’s time. The level of intolerance of the natives in those nations was only exceeded by the violence within and between them, as well as toward any other outsiders who trespassed. Tribal wars were constant. Conquered nations were enslaved and slaughtered. Human sacrifices to the gods were a way of life.

I found that gender equality was nowhere on the horizon for the natives in the time of Columbus, nor in the centuries that followed. The Native American nations also embraced a very racially violent separation from one another. Values espoused by Christopher Columbus must have been quite different in that they ultimately resulted in a declaration promoting equality for all regardless of race or gender.

To remove Christopher Columbus from the calendar and school curriculum is an attempt to erase history, not an attempt to foster peace and tolerance. All history is important to learn and remember. Native American history is important, as well as that of those who came here later and created a civilization where everyone could live together in peace regardless of the circumstances of their birth.

Christopher Columbus was one of the early European adventurers who came here in the fifteenth century seeking to expand his world. He accomplished that, bringing with him his Christian beliefs and civiized standards. It is indisputable that violence and intolerance followed, but he did not create the nature of man. Violence and intolerance were behind him and in front of him. The message Columbus carried with him throughout his life was one of rising above the nature of man, not submitting to it.

Much of our Native American history is rich and wonderful. To the best of my knowledge, I can only claim a European ancestry, but to have Native American blood somewhere in my blood line would be a great honor. It is unimaginable to me that any American today would not be interested on some level in learning about the history of the ancient occupants of this continent and those descended from them. We are familiar with many of the names of the great Native American nations from American literature and movies. Most of the stories we have been exposed to all our lives have been works of fiction, but I look forward to more historical truth in future accounts.

Historical truth is important, and we need not erase any of it to celebrate more of it. Austin, San Antonio, and all the other cities opting to change Columbus Day to Indigenous People’s Day certainly have the freedom to do that if that is what they choose, but to do it in the name of tolerance or justice or peace is just a lie. All history lessons have a beginning point, and Christopher Columbus is still a good point from which to launch a beginning for the historical account of a European advance upon this continent, and the eventual founding of the United States of America.

It would take three centuries of struggling through violence and intolerance for that to happen, but Christopher Columbus’ bears no responsibilty for that fact. Continuing to print “Columbus Day” on the calendars in America on 12 October in recognition of his accomplishments is good and appropriate for our children that they may know his contribution is one for celebration as a holiday.

Having a day on our calendar designated as Indigenous People’s Day is something I can support, but eliminating Columbus Day for it is just someone wanting to perpetuate intolerance by crying intolerance. Let’s celebrate both and record all historical truth.

We are living in a time of disinformation and historical revisionism. Perhaps there is a pattern emerging from the histories that are being presented by revisionists for public flogging. Christopher Columbus’ Christian values is but one of the most recent. Revisionists will continue marching toward their utopian mirage, but I suspect truth will ultimately prevail.

Austin, Texas city officials voted to completely replace Columbus Day with Indigenous People’s Day. They voted to remove Columbus Day from city calendars calling for public schools to teach that Columbus is not a positive role model. The resolution says that honoring Christopher Columbus’ role in history promotes values of intolerance and violence. Those words caused me to wonder if Columbus’ values really promoted intolerance and violence, and how his values compared with the indigenous people of America.

To make the statement, “Christopher Columbus’s role in history promotes values of intolerance and violence” seemed to me a bold and unprovable prejudicial statement. Intolerance and violence exists, and has existed in every society all over the world throughout all time. 

With that understanding, I concluded that promoting values of violence and intolerance was probably not what changing the name of the holiday was really about. I still wanted to research which of the two, Columbus or Native Americans, were more violent and intolerant than the other, but I suspected Austin’s city council was more interested in changing history than trying to define Native Americans as less violent and intolerant. That being the case, Austin’s city council is at the very least perpetuating intolerance, and for some maybe even inciting violence.

It requires very little reading to discover high levels of intolerance within many of the Native American nations that occupied this continent during Columbus’s time. The level of intolerance of the natives in those nations was only exceeded by the violence within and between them, as well as toward any other outsiders who trespassed. Tribal wars were constant. Conquered nations were enslaved and slaughtered. Human sacrifices to the gods were a way of life.

I found that gender equality was nowhere on the horizon for the natives in the time of Columbus, nor in the centuries that followed. The Native American nations also embraced a very racially violent separation from one another. Values espoused by Christopher Columbus must have been quite different in that they ultimately resulted in a declaration promoting equality for all regardless of race or gender.

To remove Christopher Columbus from the calendar and school curriculum is an attempt to erase history, not an attempt to foster peace and tolerance. All history is important to learn and remember. Native American history is important, as well as that of those who came here later and created a civilization where everyone could live together in peace regardless of the circumstances of their birth.

Christopher Columbus was one of the early European adventurers who came here in the fifteenth century seeking to expand his world. He accomplished that, bringing with him his Christian beliefs and civiized standards. It is indisputable that violence and intolerance followed, but he did not create the nature of man. Violence and intolerance were behind him and in front of him. The message Columbus carried with him throughout his life was one of rising above the nature of man, not submitting to it.

Much of our Native American history is rich and wonderful. To the best of my knowledge, I can only claim a European ancestry, but to have Native American blood somewhere in my blood line would be a great honor. It is unimaginable to me that any American today would not be interested on some level in learning about the history of the ancient occupants of this continent and those descended from them. We are familiar with many of the names of the great Native American nations from American literature and movies. Most of the stories we have been exposed to all our lives have been works of fiction, but I look forward to more historical truth in future accounts.

Historical truth is important, and we need not erase any of it to celebrate more of it. Austin, San Antonio, and all the other cities opting to change Columbus Day to Indigenous People’s Day certainly have the freedom to do that if that is what they choose, but to do it in the name of tolerance or justice or peace is just a lie. All history lessons have a beginning point, and Christopher Columbus is still a good point from which to launch a beginning for the historical account of a European advance upon this continent, and the eventual founding of the United States of America.

It would take three centuries of struggling through violence and intolerance for that to happen, but Christopher Columbus’ bears no responsibilty for that fact. Continuing to print “Columbus Day” on the calendars in America on 12 October in recognition of his accomplishments is good and appropriate for our children that they may know his contribution is one for celebration as a holiday.

Having a day on our calendar designated as Indigenous People’s Day is something I can support, but eliminating Columbus Day for it is just someone wanting to perpetuate intolerance by crying intolerance. Let’s celebrate both and record all historical truth.

We are living in a time of disinformation and historical revisionism. Perhaps there is a pattern emerging from the histories that are being presented by revisionists for public flogging. Christopher Columbus’ Christian values is but one of the most recent. Revisionists will continue marching toward their utopian mirage, but I suspect truth will ultimately prevail.



Source link

The Regrettable Marriage of the NFL and Left-Wing Identity Politics


What we are witnessing in the media narrative around the NFL protests is the prevailing modus operandi of contemporary leftists seeking to introduce their identity politics into all aspects of American life, even where those politics are unwelcome for most Americans.  In fact, we actually saw the left orchestrate something quite similar just a few years ago.

Consider the words of an article from 2014 by Neal Gabler, in which he argued that the NFL is the “Last sports bastion of white, male conservatives.”  In it, the author cites an Experian Simmons study, noting, in clearly accusatory terms, that 83% of NFL fans were found to be white (sin of sins!), “64% were male, 51 percent were 45 years or older, only 32% made less than $60K per year,” along with the fact that “registered Republicans were 21% more likely to be NFL fans,” and finally, that “NFL fans were 59% more likely than the average American to have played a round of golf in the last year.”

The NFL, Gabler offers, is “just a place where rich old angry white men can enjoy their world on Sunday – even if that world may be crumbling around them.”

The author doesn’t hide his disdain for the NFL and its fans, whom he believed to be the political villains of the day.  But why were they villains?  Well, his most prominent argument centered on the “Michael Sam draft saga,” which was proof that they were all homophobes.

You see, the media had constructed a narrative that Michael Sam’s draft position, and his subsequent success or failure in the NFL, represented a referendum on NFL fans’ opinion on homosexuality and same-sex marriage.  If Sam was drafted low or unsuccessful, it could only be the homophobia of these villains that was to blame.

Of course, Michael Sam’s draft position and career was much less a function of the fans than a function of facts.  He was generally thought to be too small to play defensive line, and too slow to be an edge rusher or linebacker in the NFL.  But it was never really ever about Michael Sam.  It was about marginalizing opponents of same-sex marriage and advancing the left’s agenda by introducing its diseased identity politics into America’s most popular sport. 

Now fast forward to today, and substitute black NFL players kneeling during the National Anthem for Michael Sam, and you’ll realize that there are striking similarities in the media narrative.  Only it’s not about homophobic fans these days, but racist ones.  The villains, however, are the same exact people.

Two months ago, if Colin Kaepernick wasn’t hired by an NFL team, it was the rich old angry white men in the NFL fan base that were to blame.  Today, if NFL players committing acts of disrespect toward the flag and Anthem to promote whatever cause they want to promote isn’t accepted without question by the fans of the NFL, then these same rich old angry white men are to blame.

It’s all purely identity politics meant to sow division and promote the radical left’s agenda, and the NFL has played into this effort so seamlessly that it has become impossible to separate leftist identity politics from the NFL itself.

To be clear, the NFL could have avoided its current troubles with a simple statement after Colin Kaepernick first knelt during the National Anthem in the 2016 NFL preseason to promote Black Lives Matter talking points.  It would not have been a difficult statement to write or issue.  Here’s an example off the top of my head:

We respect our players’ individualism, and their right to pursue efforts of social and political activism in their personal lives.  However, as the NFL seeks to welcome all fans of the game, irrespective of age, gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, or political stance, we will henceforth require that NFL players engage in all such activity off the field.  The NFL seeks to provide the most positive and entertaining football-viewing experience possible for its valued fans, and its policies will be appropriately tailored to meet that goal in the future.

They could have then understandably required that players on the field stand for the Anthem.  But they didn’t do that, instead choosing to support the players that disrespected the flag in all the Sunday spectacles.

In the past, it was possible to both oppose leftist identity politics and support the NFL.  They have created a circumstance where this has now become impossible, so millions are choosing to support neither.

This devotion to identity politics is a real problem for the left and the NFL, and a bigger one than they probably know.  It’s so obvious that even many progressives recognize it.  Months ago, the Wall Street Journal published a fantastic article titled “The Liberal Crackup,” written by liberal Columbia professor Mark Lilla.

This excerpt stands out in particular:

To meet the Reagan challenge, we liberals needed to develop an ambitious new vision for America and its future that again inspire people of every walk of life and in every region of the country to come together as citizens.  Instead we got tangled up in the divisive, zero-sum world of identity politics, losing a sense of what binds us together as a nation.  What went missing in the Reagan years was the great liberal-democratic We.  Little wonder that so few now wish to join us.       

Guess what?  There is nothing which “binds us together as a nation” as profoundly as the American flag.  From the advocates of FDR’s “great liberal-democratic We” to the advocates of Reagan’s “great conservative-patriotic Us,” there is a general agreement among left and right about the sanctity of the flag.  The only ones thumbing their noses at it are radical SJWs who seek to marginalize it as a symbol of villainy.  And the NFL is now in league with them in doing so. 

The flag is who we are.  And the Anthem is one treasured moment where we get to stand and express that, in spite of our different skin colors and creeds and politics, we share a common bond as countrymen.  Given that no other sport would have been more deserving of the title “America’s sport” than football, for the NFL to enact policies to ensure that its players respect the American flag and the Anthem should not have been a difficult decision. 

But, regrettably, the NFL has instead chosen damage the sport and its future in order to promote the left’s cancerous agenda.

William Sullivan blogs at Political Palaver and can be followed on Twitter.

What we are witnessing in the media narrative around the NFL protests is the prevailing modus operandi of contemporary leftists seeking to introduce their identity politics into all aspects of American life, even where those politics are unwelcome for most Americans.  In fact, we actually saw the left orchestrate something quite similar just a few years ago.

Consider the words of an article from 2014 by Neal Gabler, in which he argued that the NFL is the “Last sports bastion of white, male conservatives.”  In it, the author cites an Experian Simmons study, noting, in clearly accusatory terms, that 83% of NFL fans were found to be white (sin of sins!), “64% were male, 51 percent were 45 years or older, only 32% made less than $60K per year,” along with the fact that “registered Republicans were 21% more likely to be NFL fans,” and finally, that “NFL fans were 59% more likely than the average American to have played a round of golf in the last year.”

The NFL, Gabler offers, is “just a place where rich old angry white men can enjoy their world on Sunday – even if that world may be crumbling around them.”

The author doesn’t hide his disdain for the NFL and its fans, whom he believed to be the political villains of the day.  But why were they villains?  Well, his most prominent argument centered on the “Michael Sam draft saga,” which was proof that they were all homophobes.

You see, the media had constructed a narrative that Michael Sam’s draft position, and his subsequent success or failure in the NFL, represented a referendum on NFL fans’ opinion on homosexuality and same-sex marriage.  If Sam was drafted low or unsuccessful, it could only be the homophobia of these villains that was to blame.

Of course, Michael Sam’s draft position and career was much less a function of the fans than a function of facts.  He was generally thought to be too small to play defensive line, and too slow to be an edge rusher or linebacker in the NFL.  But it was never really ever about Michael Sam.  It was about marginalizing opponents of same-sex marriage and advancing the left’s agenda by introducing its diseased identity politics into America’s most popular sport. 

Now fast forward to today, and substitute black NFL players kneeling during the National Anthem for Michael Sam, and you’ll realize that there are striking similarities in the media narrative.  Only it’s not about homophobic fans these days, but racist ones.  The villains, however, are the same exact people.

Two months ago, if Colin Kaepernick wasn’t hired by an NFL team, it was the rich old angry white men in the NFL fan base that were to blame.  Today, if NFL players committing acts of disrespect toward the flag and Anthem to promote whatever cause they want to promote isn’t accepted without question by the fans of the NFL, then these same rich old angry white men are to blame.

It’s all purely identity politics meant to sow division and promote the radical left’s agenda, and the NFL has played into this effort so seamlessly that it has become impossible to separate leftist identity politics from the NFL itself.

To be clear, the NFL could have avoided its current troubles with a simple statement after Colin Kaepernick first knelt during the National Anthem in the 2016 NFL preseason to promote Black Lives Matter talking points.  It would not have been a difficult statement to write or issue.  Here’s an example off the top of my head:

We respect our players’ individualism, and their right to pursue efforts of social and political activism in their personal lives.  However, as the NFL seeks to welcome all fans of the game, irrespective of age, gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, or political stance, we will henceforth require that NFL players engage in all such activity off the field.  The NFL seeks to provide the most positive and entertaining football-viewing experience possible for its valued fans, and its policies will be appropriately tailored to meet that goal in the future.

They could have then understandably required that players on the field stand for the Anthem.  But they didn’t do that, instead choosing to support the players that disrespected the flag in all the Sunday spectacles.

In the past, it was possible to both oppose leftist identity politics and support the NFL.  They have created a circumstance where this has now become impossible, so millions are choosing to support neither.

This devotion to identity politics is a real problem for the left and the NFL, and a bigger one than they probably know.  It’s so obvious that even many progressives recognize it.  Months ago, the Wall Street Journal published a fantastic article titled “The Liberal Crackup,” written by liberal Columbia professor Mark Lilla.

This excerpt stands out in particular:

To meet the Reagan challenge, we liberals needed to develop an ambitious new vision for America and its future that again inspire people of every walk of life and in every region of the country to come together as citizens.  Instead we got tangled up in the divisive, zero-sum world of identity politics, losing a sense of what binds us together as a nation.  What went missing in the Reagan years was the great liberal-democratic We.  Little wonder that so few now wish to join us.       

Guess what?  There is nothing which “binds us together as a nation” as profoundly as the American flag.  From the advocates of FDR’s “great liberal-democratic We” to the advocates of Reagan’s “great conservative-patriotic Us,” there is a general agreement among left and right about the sanctity of the flag.  The only ones thumbing their noses at it are radical SJWs who seek to marginalize it as a symbol of villainy.  And the NFL is now in league with them in doing so. 

The flag is who we are.  And the Anthem is one treasured moment where we get to stand and express that, in spite of our different skin colors and creeds and politics, we share a common bond as countrymen.  Given that no other sport would have been more deserving of the title “America’s sport” than football, for the NFL to enact policies to ensure that its players respect the American flag and the Anthem should not have been a difficult decision. 

But, regrettably, the NFL has instead chosen damage the sport and its future in order to promote the left’s cancerous agenda.

William Sullivan blogs at Political Palaver and can be followed on Twitter.



Source link

For Dems, Every Crisis Is an Opportunity


To the bitter, common man, deplorably clinging to his guns and religion, it is unseemly the way progressives strive to let no crisis or catastrophe go to waste.

Let’s start with Barry and his merry band of minions and sycophants.

We should all remember “Fast and Furious” — not the movie, the scandal. Though perhaps it is presumptuous to use that term, because, apart from Sharyl Attkisson, then of CBS News, much of the media studiously ignored this first of many Obama administration scandals. Here’s a short refresher. Eric Holder, Barack Obama’s mini-me, and our esteemed “my people” attorney general, through the aegis of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) allowed, and in some instances impelled, straw buyers to purchase firearms with the purpose of smuggling them across the border into Mexico so they could be used by drug cartels and various other nefarious cliques in the commission of crimes. This was done to create sufficient evidence to prove the nation needed more robust gun control measures. For what it was, it was successful because their little gem of a plan resulted in the deaths of hundreds of Mexicans and at least one America Border Patrol Agent.

In this instance, Barry and Eric were creating the crisis they wanted to exploit. Yet, it is emblematic of the entire “crisis is opportunity” mentality.

They didn’t care that people would have to die in order for them to make their case; they just wanted to make their case. That a person would have to be some kind of monster to sacrifice lives for political purposes escapes the sensibilities of the Democrats and the media (progressives=Democrats=media). It never occurred to them that right-thinking people would care about dead Mexicans because, in their way of thinking, those dead Mexicans were being sacrificed for the greater good — in this case, gun control.

This crisis is the perfect example of what progressives have become in this country. Nothing matters to them, not dead Mexicans, not a dead Border Agent, and certainly not the constitution, or even what the majority of Americans want. All that matters is the politics and if Mexicans have to die in order for them to force upon the nation stringent gun control, or even gun confiscation, then it is a small price to pay.

If you need another example of their situational morality, you need to look no further than Charlottesville, which was a collusive operation involving Antifa, Black Live Matter (BLM), and the Democrats, represented by the odious Terry McAuliffe, Governor of Virginia and the repugnant Michael Signer, Mayor of Charlottesville.

From the beginning, it was stagecraft. In August, fifty people assembled at a park in Charlottesville to protest the removal of a cultural icon, the statue of Robert E. Lee, they were soon joined by several hundred white supremacists. While this was going on, several thousand Antifa and BLM reprobates mobilized outside the park and were waiting for their signal.

At the prescribed moment, even though the protest was peaceful, the police under control of Mayor Signer and Governor McAuliffe moved to force the protestors out of the park into the waiting arms of Antifa and BLM. We all know what happened then — exactly what the Democrats wanted to happen. One person died that day, but for them, that was not a problem because it was in service of a greater goal, creating a “white nationalist” crisis that could only be solved by voting for Democrats. 

The Democrats cannot have blacks voting any other way except Democrat, so they decided to create a crisis where they could mythologize the several thousand white supremacists remaining in this country as a symbol of the embedded racism throughout America as represented by the Republican Party.

As a side benefit, they created a trap in which they could ensnare any Republican who didn’t denounce racism with enough vigor, labeling them as racists while blaming the whole thing on Trump and his “divisive rhetoric.”

If we didn’t have a complacent media, that little dirty trick would not have been possible. Yet, since the media is in bed with the Democrats all we heard is what Trump allegedly did or didn’t say.

These are just two incidents where Democrats were willing to create a crisis to exploit for political gain.

With respect to the recent shootings in Las Vegas, where 58 people died and almost 400 were injured. How long did it take the Democrats, led by the harpy Hillary Clinton, to call for “sensible” gun control measures? To Democrats, “sensible” gun control really stands for total control because what they really want is to confiscate all the guns in America.  

Stephen Paddock’s heinous act of savagery was the perfect crisis to make their point — even better than “Fast and Furious” because the dead were Americans –and they didn’t even wait for authorities to start washing away the blood to start making their case.

Note, however, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama’s almost total silence when the Harvey Weinstein scandal broke. They waited days before speaking because that was a crisis in their own house. Obama’s daughter interned for the man, for goodness sake.

Weinstein was one of them, and it took some time before they figured out an angle where they could tar Trump in particular and conservatives in general with the nastiness of Weinstein’s cruel and abusive acts toward women.

Even the death of an American Special Forces soldier is an opportunity to accuse Trump of not being sympathetic enough to the dead soldier’s widow — because no low is too low for Democrats to sink in order to make a political point.

How about the recent hurricanes — have you heard they were all Trump’s fault? He didn’t care enough about Puerto Ricans to effectively help the devastated island. At least, that’s what the Democrats said, led by the mayor of San Juan as she stood in front of pallet after pallet after pallet of relief supplies that she refused to release to her people.

That’s where we are today. Hillary, Barry, and their progressive brethren sit like ghouls awaiting the next crisis — hoping that enough people are either killed or injured for them to prove to America that Democrats should control everything. Maybe they’ll get lucky and the nation will suffer a truly horrifying tragedy.

After all, a crisis can be a beautiful thing for those who are willing to exploit it to realize their political dreams.

To the bitter, common man, deplorably clinging to his guns and religion, it is unseemly the way progressives strive to let no crisis or catastrophe go to waste.

Let’s start with Barry and his merry band of minions and sycophants.

We should all remember “Fast and Furious” — not the movie, the scandal. Though perhaps it is presumptuous to use that term, because, apart from Sharyl Attkisson, then of CBS News, much of the media studiously ignored this first of many Obama administration scandals. Here’s a short refresher. Eric Holder, Barack Obama’s mini-me, and our esteemed “my people” attorney general, through the aegis of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) allowed, and in some instances impelled, straw buyers to purchase firearms with the purpose of smuggling them across the border into Mexico so they could be used by drug cartels and various other nefarious cliques in the commission of crimes. This was done to create sufficient evidence to prove the nation needed more robust gun control measures. For what it was, it was successful because their little gem of a plan resulted in the deaths of hundreds of Mexicans and at least one America Border Patrol Agent.

In this instance, Barry and Eric were creating the crisis they wanted to exploit. Yet, it is emblematic of the entire “crisis is opportunity” mentality.

They didn’t care that people would have to die in order for them to make their case; they just wanted to make their case. That a person would have to be some kind of monster to sacrifice lives for political purposes escapes the sensibilities of the Democrats and the media (progressives=Democrats=media). It never occurred to them that right-thinking people would care about dead Mexicans because, in their way of thinking, those dead Mexicans were being sacrificed for the greater good — in this case, gun control.

This crisis is the perfect example of what progressives have become in this country. Nothing matters to them, not dead Mexicans, not a dead Border Agent, and certainly not the constitution, or even what the majority of Americans want. All that matters is the politics and if Mexicans have to die in order for them to force upon the nation stringent gun control, or even gun confiscation, then it is a small price to pay.

If you need another example of their situational morality, you need to look no further than Charlottesville, which was a collusive operation involving Antifa, Black Live Matter (BLM), and the Democrats, represented by the odious Terry McAuliffe, Governor of Virginia and the repugnant Michael Signer, Mayor of Charlottesville.

From the beginning, it was stagecraft. In August, fifty people assembled at a park in Charlottesville to protest the removal of a cultural icon, the statue of Robert E. Lee, they were soon joined by several hundred white supremacists. While this was going on, several thousand Antifa and BLM reprobates mobilized outside the park and were waiting for their signal.

At the prescribed moment, even though the protest was peaceful, the police under control of Mayor Signer and Governor McAuliffe moved to force the protestors out of the park into the waiting arms of Antifa and BLM. We all know what happened then — exactly what the Democrats wanted to happen. One person died that day, but for them, that was not a problem because it was in service of a greater goal, creating a “white nationalist” crisis that could only be solved by voting for Democrats. 

The Democrats cannot have blacks voting any other way except Democrat, so they decided to create a crisis where they could mythologize the several thousand white supremacists remaining in this country as a symbol of the embedded racism throughout America as represented by the Republican Party.

As a side benefit, they created a trap in which they could ensnare any Republican who didn’t denounce racism with enough vigor, labeling them as racists while blaming the whole thing on Trump and his “divisive rhetoric.”

If we didn’t have a complacent media, that little dirty trick would not have been possible. Yet, since the media is in bed with the Democrats all we heard is what Trump allegedly did or didn’t say.

These are just two incidents where Democrats were willing to create a crisis to exploit for political gain.

With respect to the recent shootings in Las Vegas, where 58 people died and almost 400 were injured. How long did it take the Democrats, led by the harpy Hillary Clinton, to call for “sensible” gun control measures? To Democrats, “sensible” gun control really stands for total control because what they really want is to confiscate all the guns in America.  

Stephen Paddock’s heinous act of savagery was the perfect crisis to make their point — even better than “Fast and Furious” because the dead were Americans –and they didn’t even wait for authorities to start washing away the blood to start making their case.

Note, however, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama’s almost total silence when the Harvey Weinstein scandal broke. They waited days before speaking because that was a crisis in their own house. Obama’s daughter interned for the man, for goodness sake.

Weinstein was one of them, and it took some time before they figured out an angle where they could tar Trump in particular and conservatives in general with the nastiness of Weinstein’s cruel and abusive acts toward women.

Even the death of an American Special Forces soldier is an opportunity to accuse Trump of not being sympathetic enough to the dead soldier’s widow — because no low is too low for Democrats to sink in order to make a political point.

How about the recent hurricanes — have you heard they were all Trump’s fault? He didn’t care enough about Puerto Ricans to effectively help the devastated island. At least, that’s what the Democrats said, led by the mayor of San Juan as she stood in front of pallet after pallet after pallet of relief supplies that she refused to release to her people.

That’s where we are today. Hillary, Barry, and their progressive brethren sit like ghouls awaiting the next crisis — hoping that enough people are either killed or injured for them to prove to America that Democrats should control everything. Maybe they’ll get lucky and the nation will suffer a truly horrifying tragedy.

After all, a crisis can be a beautiful thing for those who are willing to exploit it to realize their political dreams.



Source link

Trump and the Return to Constitutional Government


President Donald Trump is doing something that has not been seen in the last eight years. He is devolving — returning — power from the Executive Branch (the Office of the President), primarily to the Legislative Branch (the Congress). We are seeing this in three recent developments.

First, he announced an Executive Order cancelling the program created by former President Obama commonly known as DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals). The DACA program was fashioned by way of an Executive Order signed by President Obama in June 2012. Under the DACA program, Mr. Obama ordered the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to allow aliens illegally residing in the United States to get work authorizations, Social Security numbers, and driver’s licenses — none of which are legally permitted under statutory law. Mr. Obama originally wanted Congress to enact such a law — commonly known as the DREAM Act (Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors) but was unable to persuade Congress to act. So Mr. Obama decided to take matters into his own hands. Hence, rather than work with Congress to change the law, he simply ordered DHS to suspend enforcement of those parts of the law he did not like. Trump did not end DACA immediately. His Executive Order will not take effect for six months — creating a window for Congress to address this, as is their role, via legislation. So by cancelling Obama’s executive order and ending the DACA program, Trump is sending this issue back where it belongs — to the Congress — to be addressed with legislation.

Next Trump announced that he will decertify the Iran Nuclear Deal created by President Obama. Notice the word “Deal.” This is not a treaty. Trivial distinction, you say? Au contraire, this is a very important distinction. A treaty is binding on any country that enters into it. A treaty has the effect of law — which is why the power to ratify a treaty is held, solely, by the U.S. Senate — something President Obama was unable to persuade the Senate to do. This is also why Obama had to call it a “historic understanding.” As such, this deal required the certification of the President on a regular basis (every 90 days). While Mr. Obama was president, he certified the deal every time. And, 90 days ago, Trump reluctantly certified the deal again. But at the next 90-day mark – Oct. 13, after due consideration, President Trump refused to certify, effectively giving Congress a 60-day window to reimpose Iran sanctions suspended by the deal, or kill the Iran deal if they so choose. Again, Mr. Trump is sending this issue back where it belongs — to the Congress — to be addressed.

Finally, Trump has ended ObamaCare subsidies being paid to Insurance companies. The subsidies were known as CSR (Cost Sharing Reduction), and are paid directly to insurers to cover losses they incur by participating in the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as ObamaCare. Under the terms of ObamaCare, some subsidies (paid to patients) were authorized by Congress, but others (CSR payments to insurance companies) were not. Mr. Obama believed Congress would, in the future, consider amending ObamaCare to include CSR payment authorization. But Congress, seeing the cost of such payments growing out of control, refused (which is probably why Congress did not agree to authorize CSR payments in the first place). Once again, Obama, unable to persuade Congress to act according to his wishes, simply ordered the Treasury to make the payments. Congress took Obama to court, claiming the President had no authority to order these payments, and a federal judge sided with Congress — but allowed the President to continue to order the Treasury to make the payments until he and the Congress could reach an agreement, with no deadline for that agreement given. And CSR payments continued — until President Trump chose to end them and insisted that Congress decide this issue.

It should be noted that the Constitution allows only one branch — the Legislature (Congress) — to create legislation (laws). The Executive branch is charged with enforcing the law, the Judicial branch is charged with reviewing and validating the Constitutionality of the law, but the Congress is the only branch that can create the law. In all three of these cases, Trump is insisting that Congress perform its function — make laws. In doing so, Trump is determined to devolve the authority for making laws to its rightful holder, Congress.

Until recently, this was the approach usually taken by a President. FDR guided the New Deal through Congress via a series of Congressional Acts (the Securities Act of 1933 that created the SEC, and the Social Security Act of 1935 were two that are still in place to this day). Lyndon Johnson got the Civil Rights act of 1965 through Congress (it should be noted that Johnson did this with little support in his own Democrat Party — most of his support came from the opposition Republican Party). Richard Nixon got the Clean Air Act of 1970 (creating the EPA) and the Consumer Product Safety Act of 1972 through Congress (both houses controlled by the Democrats). And Ronald Reagan got the Graham Rudman Hollings Act (tax reform that unleashed a wave of prosperity) through a Congress in which the House of Representatives was controlled by Democrats. Bill Clinton (Welfare Reform in 1996, through a Congress controlled by Republicans) and George W. Bush (Tax Relief in 2001) were similarly successful in shepherding legislation through Congress. A number of these legislative achievements stand to this day. Others have been modified by subsequent legislation. But all of them were created by a body of legislators — not by one man, the president. And because of that, they cannot be undone by one man — even a president. Perhaps Obama is now finding out the true, temporary, nature of the Executive Order and the permanence that marks the results of the legislative process.

So in this way President Trump, agree with him or not, is devolving power from the Executive branch to the Legislative branch in a way not often seen in his predecessor. And the irony is clear: This Constitutional devolution is taking place at the hands of the former private sector CEO, and reversing the previous actions of the “Constitutional law expert.” 

President Donald Trump is doing something that has not been seen in the last eight years. He is devolving — returning — power from the Executive Branch (the Office of the President), primarily to the Legislative Branch (the Congress). We are seeing this in three recent developments.

First, he announced an Executive Order cancelling the program created by former President Obama commonly known as DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals). The DACA program was fashioned by way of an Executive Order signed by President Obama in June 2012. Under the DACA program, Mr. Obama ordered the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to allow aliens illegally residing in the United States to get work authorizations, Social Security numbers, and driver’s licenses — none of which are legally permitted under statutory law. Mr. Obama originally wanted Congress to enact such a law — commonly known as the DREAM Act (Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors) but was unable to persuade Congress to act. So Mr. Obama decided to take matters into his own hands. Hence, rather than work with Congress to change the law, he simply ordered DHS to suspend enforcement of those parts of the law he did not like. Trump did not end DACA immediately. His Executive Order will not take effect for six months — creating a window for Congress to address this, as is their role, via legislation. So by cancelling Obama’s executive order and ending the DACA program, Trump is sending this issue back where it belongs — to the Congress — to be addressed with legislation.

Next Trump announced that he will decertify the Iran Nuclear Deal created by President Obama. Notice the word “Deal.” This is not a treaty. Trivial distinction, you say? Au contraire, this is a very important distinction. A treaty is binding on any country that enters into it. A treaty has the effect of law — which is why the power to ratify a treaty is held, solely, by the U.S. Senate — something President Obama was unable to persuade the Senate to do. This is also why Obama had to call it a “historic understanding.” As such, this deal required the certification of the President on a regular basis (every 90 days). While Mr. Obama was president, he certified the deal every time. And, 90 days ago, Trump reluctantly certified the deal again. But at the next 90-day mark – Oct. 13, after due consideration, President Trump refused to certify, effectively giving Congress a 60-day window to reimpose Iran sanctions suspended by the deal, or kill the Iran deal if they so choose. Again, Mr. Trump is sending this issue back where it belongs — to the Congress — to be addressed.

Finally, Trump has ended ObamaCare subsidies being paid to Insurance companies. The subsidies were known as CSR (Cost Sharing Reduction), and are paid directly to insurers to cover losses they incur by participating in the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as ObamaCare. Under the terms of ObamaCare, some subsidies (paid to patients) were authorized by Congress, but others (CSR payments to insurance companies) were not. Mr. Obama believed Congress would, in the future, consider amending ObamaCare to include CSR payment authorization. But Congress, seeing the cost of such payments growing out of control, refused (which is probably why Congress did not agree to authorize CSR payments in the first place). Once again, Obama, unable to persuade Congress to act according to his wishes, simply ordered the Treasury to make the payments. Congress took Obama to court, claiming the President had no authority to order these payments, and a federal judge sided with Congress — but allowed the President to continue to order the Treasury to make the payments until he and the Congress could reach an agreement, with no deadline for that agreement given. And CSR payments continued — until President Trump chose to end them and insisted that Congress decide this issue.

It should be noted that the Constitution allows only one branch — the Legislature (Congress) — to create legislation (laws). The Executive branch is charged with enforcing the law, the Judicial branch is charged with reviewing and validating the Constitutionality of the law, but the Congress is the only branch that can create the law. In all three of these cases, Trump is insisting that Congress perform its function — make laws. In doing so, Trump is determined to devolve the authority for making laws to its rightful holder, Congress.

Until recently, this was the approach usually taken by a President. FDR guided the New Deal through Congress via a series of Congressional Acts (the Securities Act of 1933 that created the SEC, and the Social Security Act of 1935 were two that are still in place to this day). Lyndon Johnson got the Civil Rights act of 1965 through Congress (it should be noted that Johnson did this with little support in his own Democrat Party — most of his support came from the opposition Republican Party). Richard Nixon got the Clean Air Act of 1970 (creating the EPA) and the Consumer Product Safety Act of 1972 through Congress (both houses controlled by the Democrats). And Ronald Reagan got the Graham Rudman Hollings Act (tax reform that unleashed a wave of prosperity) through a Congress in which the House of Representatives was controlled by Democrats. Bill Clinton (Welfare Reform in 1996, through a Congress controlled by Republicans) and George W. Bush (Tax Relief in 2001) were similarly successful in shepherding legislation through Congress. A number of these legislative achievements stand to this day. Others have been modified by subsequent legislation. But all of them were created by a body of legislators — not by one man, the president. And because of that, they cannot be undone by one man — even a president. Perhaps Obama is now finding out the true, temporary, nature of the Executive Order and the permanence that marks the results of the legislative process.

So in this way President Trump, agree with him or not, is devolving power from the Executive branch to the Legislative branch in a way not often seen in his predecessor. And the irony is clear: This Constitutional devolution is taking place at the hands of the former private sector CEO, and reversing the previous actions of the “Constitutional law expert.” 



Source link

There Can Be No Compromise on Immigration Reform


On October 8, the White House released a list of “Immigration Principles and Policies” that President Trump says “must be included” in any legislation legitimizing President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals executive order (DACA).  Trump is cutting a deal: Congress gets DACA if Trump gets immigration reform. 

The million-dollar question: is it a good deal?  No, unfortunately.

Before getting into the details, it is worth briefly reviewing DACA and highlighting Trump’s key demands.

Summing up DACA: President Obama signed an executive order in June 2012 that let all illegal aliens who arrived in America before they were age 16 apply for legal work permits, Social Security numbers, and driver’s licenses and made them eligible for earned income tax credits.  The order gives recipients most of the privileges associated with citizenship.  Enrollment must be renewed every two years.  Since 2012, nearly 800,000 illegal aliens have taken advantage of the program – most of them adults.  Basically, DACA is renewable amnesty.

Depending upon how broadly Congress legislates on DACA, somewhere between 800,000 and 3.5 million people could be granted de facto amnesty and given a pathway to citizenship.  Remember: not everyone who can enroll in DACA is enrolled.  This is an enormous number of people, comparable in scale to the Reagan-era amnesty.

On the other side of the equation are President Trump’s demands. In exchange for DACA, Trump wants funding for the wall (the House Homeland Security Committee has already allocated $10 billion toward the wall); an extra 10,000 ICE officers, 1,000 immigration lawyers, and 370 judges to help clear the deportation backlog; legislative penalties for “sanctuary cities”; an E-Verify system to bar illegals from the job market; passage of the RAISE Act; and a number of other minor concessions.

Of these reforms, the RAISE Act is the most significant.  Very briefly, the RAISE Act is an immigration reform bill sponsored by Senators Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) and David Perdue (R-Ga.).  The act would not only cut legal immigration into the U.S. by roughly 50 percent, but break the cycle of chain migration by giving priority to economically valuable immigrants rather than those with family connections.  If passed, the RAISE Act would be the most significant piece of immigration legislation since the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965, which ushered in the era of mass migration.

It is difficult to overstate the economic benefits of the RAISE Act, which are twofold.  First, the legislation would reduce overall immigration levels significantly.  Second, it would better calibrate the type of immigrants arriving in the U.S.

Reducing the overall level of immigration is important because America’s economy does not need additional labor.  The labor market is over-saturated as is.  Real unemployment remains high, and there is no sense exacerbating the problem.  Furthermore, fewer immigrants would help improve working conditions and wages for U.S. citizens.  This has already begun in a few locations – the logic is sound and empirically valid.  And fewer low-skilled immigrants means fewer people on welfare.

The act also ensures that America gets high-quality, skilled immigrants by prioritizing people with valuable skills.  This is the type of immigrants most likely to help expand the economy in the long run – immigrants whom U.S. policy should have been targeting for decades.

Trump Should Not Surrender on DACA

All that being said, President Trump should not trade DACA for the RAISE Act – nor for the other assorted goodies.  Why not?  It all boils down to political asymmetries.

There is little doubt that President Trump’s demands are more valuable than DACA on paper: DACA would grant residency to, at most, 3.5 million people, whereas the RAISE Act would cut immigration by 500,000 people per year.  Therefore, it should not take long for the benefits of ongoing immigration reduction to outweigh the one-time costs associated with preserving DACA.  Furthermore, the RAISE Act would prevent a wave of chain migration in the wake of a DACA amnesty, setting aside another major concern.

However, this assumes that the RAISE Act will last.  It will not, and herein lies the political asymmetry.

The Democratic Party lost the war of ideas decades ago and now depends upon immigrant voters to survive.  In fact, a report from the Center for Immigration Studies shows that immigrants vote left by a ratio of at least 2:1, and the gap is widening.  This has major political consequences – especially since there are now over 40 million legal immigrants in America.  For example, the last presidential election Democrats won without immigrant voters was that of Lyndon B. Johnson back in 1964 (excluding Ross Perot’s vote-splitting antics in 1992).

Democrats need immigration, and they know it.  Should the RAISE Act pass, the Democrats will work night and day to repeal it.  Eventually, they will succeed.  After all, the RAISE Act is just a piece of ordinary legislation.  Conversely, a DACA amnesty will not be reversible – given how bitterly divided America is over the deportation of illegal immigrants, the likelihood of successfully stripping residency or citizenship rights from amnesty recipients is basically nil.  Amnesty is permanent; immigration reform is not.  The same goes for just about everything else on President Trump’s list – with the exception of the wall, perhaps.

There can be no deal on DACA and no compromise on immigration reform until the Democrats stop playing identity politics and begin putting Americans first.  President Trump would be wise to acknowledge this.

On October 8, the White House released a list of “Immigration Principles and Policies” that President Trump says “must be included” in any legislation legitimizing President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals executive order (DACA).  Trump is cutting a deal: Congress gets DACA if Trump gets immigration reform. 

The million-dollar question: is it a good deal?  No, unfortunately.

Before getting into the details, it is worth briefly reviewing DACA and highlighting Trump’s key demands.

Summing up DACA: President Obama signed an executive order in June 2012 that let all illegal aliens who arrived in America before they were age 16 apply for legal work permits, Social Security numbers, and driver’s licenses and made them eligible for earned income tax credits.  The order gives recipients most of the privileges associated with citizenship.  Enrollment must be renewed every two years.  Since 2012, nearly 800,000 illegal aliens have taken advantage of the program – most of them adults.  Basically, DACA is renewable amnesty.

Depending upon how broadly Congress legislates on DACA, somewhere between 800,000 and 3.5 million people could be granted de facto amnesty and given a pathway to citizenship.  Remember: not everyone who can enroll in DACA is enrolled.  This is an enormous number of people, comparable in scale to the Reagan-era amnesty.

On the other side of the equation are President Trump’s demands. In exchange for DACA, Trump wants funding for the wall (the House Homeland Security Committee has already allocated $10 billion toward the wall); an extra 10,000 ICE officers, 1,000 immigration lawyers, and 370 judges to help clear the deportation backlog; legislative penalties for “sanctuary cities”; an E-Verify system to bar illegals from the job market; passage of the RAISE Act; and a number of other minor concessions.

Of these reforms, the RAISE Act is the most significant.  Very briefly, the RAISE Act is an immigration reform bill sponsored by Senators Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) and David Perdue (R-Ga.).  The act would not only cut legal immigration into the U.S. by roughly 50 percent, but break the cycle of chain migration by giving priority to economically valuable immigrants rather than those with family connections.  If passed, the RAISE Act would be the most significant piece of immigration legislation since the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965, which ushered in the era of mass migration.

It is difficult to overstate the economic benefits of the RAISE Act, which are twofold.  First, the legislation would reduce overall immigration levels significantly.  Second, it would better calibrate the type of immigrants arriving in the U.S.

Reducing the overall level of immigration is important because America’s economy does not need additional labor.  The labor market is over-saturated as is.  Real unemployment remains high, and there is no sense exacerbating the problem.  Furthermore, fewer immigrants would help improve working conditions and wages for U.S. citizens.  This has already begun in a few locations – the logic is sound and empirically valid.  And fewer low-skilled immigrants means fewer people on welfare.

The act also ensures that America gets high-quality, skilled immigrants by prioritizing people with valuable skills.  This is the type of immigrants most likely to help expand the economy in the long run – immigrants whom U.S. policy should have been targeting for decades.

Trump Should Not Surrender on DACA

All that being said, President Trump should not trade DACA for the RAISE Act – nor for the other assorted goodies.  Why not?  It all boils down to political asymmetries.

There is little doubt that President Trump’s demands are more valuable than DACA on paper: DACA would grant residency to, at most, 3.5 million people, whereas the RAISE Act would cut immigration by 500,000 people per year.  Therefore, it should not take long for the benefits of ongoing immigration reduction to outweigh the one-time costs associated with preserving DACA.  Furthermore, the RAISE Act would prevent a wave of chain migration in the wake of a DACA amnesty, setting aside another major concern.

However, this assumes that the RAISE Act will last.  It will not, and herein lies the political asymmetry.

The Democratic Party lost the war of ideas decades ago and now depends upon immigrant voters to survive.  In fact, a report from the Center for Immigration Studies shows that immigrants vote left by a ratio of at least 2:1, and the gap is widening.  This has major political consequences – especially since there are now over 40 million legal immigrants in America.  For example, the last presidential election Democrats won without immigrant voters was that of Lyndon B. Johnson back in 1964 (excluding Ross Perot’s vote-splitting antics in 1992).

Democrats need immigration, and they know it.  Should the RAISE Act pass, the Democrats will work night and day to repeal it.  Eventually, they will succeed.  After all, the RAISE Act is just a piece of ordinary legislation.  Conversely, a DACA amnesty will not be reversible – given how bitterly divided America is over the deportation of illegal immigrants, the likelihood of successfully stripping residency or citizenship rights from amnesty recipients is basically nil.  Amnesty is permanent; immigration reform is not.  The same goes for just about everything else on President Trump’s list – with the exception of the wall, perhaps.

There can be no deal on DACA and no compromise on immigration reform until the Democrats stop playing identity politics and begin putting Americans first.  President Trump would be wise to acknowledge this.



Source link

Hillary Clinton Never, Ever Leaves


Dr. Leo Marvin: You think he’s gone?  He’s not gone.  That’s the whole point!  He’s never gone!  [Leo opens the door, and there’s Bob.] 

Hillary Clinton is our Bob Wiley.  She stalks the American people, inserts herself in our lives at every turn.  Bill Clinton tried to give us a heads-up when he campaigned, saying that by electing him, the people would get two for the price of one.   Americans ignored the warning, elected Bill, and opened the door to Hillary. 

Fresh off his swearing in, President Clinton announced that his wife would be his Bobby Kennedy and gave her the National Task Force on Health Care Reform.  Hillary immediately went to ground, her task force cloaked in secrecy until she was sued in federal court and ordered to open the fact-finding meetings.

Hillarycare went down in flames in part because of her secret meetings.  So Hillary stepped back, served out her sentence as first lady, and then went to work on her own presidential bid.  First up, a Senate seat – great launching pad.  She picked New York because you can’t be too liberal for the Big Apple.  Mao Tse-tung is not too liberal for the Big Apple. 

But even in New York, Hillary couldn’t win a race in her own right.  She was hit with what I like to call the “Lazio effect.”  This phenomenon occurs whenever there’s a choice between Hillary Clinton and someone else, anyone else, even a Republican, Rick Lazio, in New York, for goodness’s sake.  After the first debate, Lazio led in the polls, and post-debate conventional wisdom was that Lazio won.

But, again like Bob, Hillary can’t or won’t take a hint.  Her team picked up an angle from debate tapes when Lazio crossed the stage to hand Hillary a campaign finance pledge.  Lazio, much taller than Clinton, towered over her, could be seen as invading her space.  The Clinton team and their media hammered the message home: Lazio’s a sexist bully, a “creep” who “menaced” Clinton.  Her dirty politics prevailed, and she won the Senate seat.

Fast-forward to the 2008 presidential election.  Hillary now had senator on her résumé, had an overflowing war chest, knew all the right people (has dossiers on most of them), and was in position to be the first female president.  It’s a lock.

She was looking good in the primaries, ahead in the polls, but then, wham!  Hillary was again broadsided by the Lazio effect – an alternative, a Hillary escape clause. 

Senator Barack Obama started closing in and then took the lead.  Black trumps woman any day of the week, so the super-delegates switched, and Hillary found herself staring up at bus axles.

Obama got the White House, and Hillary got a consolation prize: secretary of state (SOS).  This SOS gig gave Hillary the gravitas to cinch her promised presidential win in 2016. 

But then Hillary screwed up the SOS gig, arrogantly dismissed pleas from the Benghazi embassy for increased security – hell, for any security.  Then, on September 11, 2012, she left those at the embassy for dead.     

Hillary was not about to let the incident tarnish her political career.  She blew off Benghazi – time to move on.  Or, as she so brilliantly phrased it in the congressional hearing, “What difference at this point does it make?”

Finally, it was 2016, and Hillary was ready to collect.  She kicked off her presidential campaign with a flurry of excitement.  This was her hour, her time, and this time, no one was going to stop her. 

Bam!  The Lazio effect struck yet again.  Hillary’s rightful claim to the throne was challenged by a 70-year-old communist, Bernie Sanders, who preaches what he doesn’t practice but offered enough free stuff to the snowflakes to garner an increasing number of votes.  Oh, and he’s not Hillary. 

An unintended consequence of Bernie’s popularity was that his rise highlighted the Democrats’ “super-delegate” fix: the fact that the election was rigged for Hillary before the first vote was cast.  And Donald Trump was out there, telling the world that poor Bernie can’t win because the election’s rigged.

Then, right before the Democrat convention, WikiLeaks published the bombshell that the primaries really were rigged against Bernie.  Of course, that didn’t change the winners and losers.  The DNC shuffled personnel and shut out those who objected to the phony election, and Hillary made history as the first female presidential nominee of a major party.  

Meanwhile, the media were busier than a cat covering crap on a hot tin roof trying to bury Hillary’s emerging scandals: an unsecured server used for classified information, obstruction of justice and destruction of evidence with 33,000 deleted, bleached emails, hammered iPhones, other “lost” government phones and devices. 

But Hillary’s got friends in high places.  FBI director Comey came forward to shut down the criminal stuff with a blanket acquittal of all charges. 

The press continued to manage Hillary’s campaign, didn’t report the crime stuff, addressed health issues only once the controversy was viral on Twitter, and were pretty much able to keep a lid on the damaging stuff.  Plus they were gaslighting the hell out of their viewers: “Hillary can’t lose,” “Polls show a Clinton landslide,” “Trump’s going to suffer the biggest electoral defeat in political history.”

With that kind of support, what could go wrong?

Kaboom!  You guessed it: the Lazio effect.  Unfortunately for Hillary, there were two candidates from major parties in the running, and that second option is always a death knell for Hill’s hopes.

Voters weren’t scared off by the phony polls.  They showed up in record-breaking numbers, stood in line for hours, and crawled over crushed glass to vote.  And as the media openly wepg, railed against white people, and begged someone to wake them from this nightmare, the votes were counted, and it was President Trump.  

At long last, Hillary was gone.  She slinked off into the woods, and people breathed a sigh of relief.  Surely, she won’t dare show her face in public again.  The humiliation’s too great, the loss too painful. 

But Hillary’s not capable of shame or embarrassment.  No, she sprang back onto the scene with a new book, What Happened.  Then she was back on TV to promote her book, to comment on every national tragedy, paint Puerto Rico as Trump’s Katrina, help Democrats push gun control after the Las Vegas massacre, sanction the NFL protest to our anthem.    

And now she’s inserting herself in our ally’s politics as well.  As Nigel Farage tweeted, “Hillary Clinton is part of the global elite that want to overturn Brexit. We will resist.

Yep, it’s back to the drawing board for Hillary.  Brexit was the first evidence that people can still have a voice in their government.  So Hillary’s working to undo Britain’s decision, to override the British people’s will and take back globalist control. 

Oh, you thought Hillary was out of the picture, that when she was defeated, humiliated in an electoral landslide, she’d be too disgraced to show her face in public?  Ha!

You think she’s gone?  She’s not gone.  That’s the whole point!  She’s never gone!  [We turn on the TV, and there’s Hillary.]

In the movie What About Bob, a needy psychiatric patient, Bob Wiley, stalks his psychiatrist, Dr. Leo Marvin.  Bob follows Dr. Marvin on his vacation, invades Dr. Marvin’s family, shows up at dinner, spends the night, even co-opts the doctor’s television interview.  Everywhere Dr. Marvin turns, Bob’s there.  No hints, insults, or humiliation can loosen Bob’s death grip on the doctor. 

Dr. Marvin finally loses it and throws Bob out, tells him to never come back.  He slams the door on Bob and then turns to his despondent family.  They’re sad that Bob is gone. 

Dr. Leo Marvin: You think he’s gone?  He’s not gone.  That’s the whole point!  He’s never gone!  [Leo opens the door, and there’s Bob.] 

Hillary Clinton is our Bob Wiley.  She stalks the American people, inserts herself in our lives at every turn.  Bill Clinton tried to give us a heads-up when he campaigned, saying that by electing him, the people would get two for the price of one.   Americans ignored the warning, elected Bill, and opened the door to Hillary. 

Fresh off his swearing in, President Clinton announced that his wife would be his Bobby Kennedy and gave her the National Task Force on Health Care Reform.  Hillary immediately went to ground, her task force cloaked in secrecy until she was sued in federal court and ordered to open the fact-finding meetings.

Hillarycare went down in flames in part because of her secret meetings.  So Hillary stepped back, served out her sentence as first lady, and then went to work on her own presidential bid.  First up, a Senate seat – great launching pad.  She picked New York because you can’t be too liberal for the Big Apple.  Mao Tse-tung is not too liberal for the Big Apple. 

But even in New York, Hillary couldn’t win a race in her own right.  She was hit with what I like to call the “Lazio effect.”  This phenomenon occurs whenever there’s a choice between Hillary Clinton and someone else, anyone else, even a Republican, Rick Lazio, in New York, for goodness’s sake.  After the first debate, Lazio led in the polls, and post-debate conventional wisdom was that Lazio won.

But, again like Bob, Hillary can’t or won’t take a hint.  Her team picked up an angle from debate tapes when Lazio crossed the stage to hand Hillary a campaign finance pledge.  Lazio, much taller than Clinton, towered over her, could be seen as invading her space.  The Clinton team and their media hammered the message home: Lazio’s a sexist bully, a “creep” who “menaced” Clinton.  Her dirty politics prevailed, and she won the Senate seat.

Fast-forward to the 2008 presidential election.  Hillary now had senator on her résumé, had an overflowing war chest, knew all the right people (has dossiers on most of them), and was in position to be the first female president.  It’s a lock.

She was looking good in the primaries, ahead in the polls, but then, wham!  Hillary was again broadsided by the Lazio effect – an alternative, a Hillary escape clause. 

Senator Barack Obama started closing in and then took the lead.  Black trumps woman any day of the week, so the super-delegates switched, and Hillary found herself staring up at bus axles.

Obama got the White House, and Hillary got a consolation prize: secretary of state (SOS).  This SOS gig gave Hillary the gravitas to cinch her promised presidential win in 2016. 

But then Hillary screwed up the SOS gig, arrogantly dismissed pleas from the Benghazi embassy for increased security – hell, for any security.  Then, on September 11, 2012, she left those at the embassy for dead.     

Hillary was not about to let the incident tarnish her political career.  She blew off Benghazi – time to move on.  Or, as she so brilliantly phrased it in the congressional hearing, “What difference at this point does it make?”

Finally, it was 2016, and Hillary was ready to collect.  She kicked off her presidential campaign with a flurry of excitement.  This was her hour, her time, and this time, no one was going to stop her. 

Bam!  The Lazio effect struck yet again.  Hillary’s rightful claim to the throne was challenged by a 70-year-old communist, Bernie Sanders, who preaches what he doesn’t practice but offered enough free stuff to the snowflakes to garner an increasing number of votes.  Oh, and he’s not Hillary. 

An unintended consequence of Bernie’s popularity was that his rise highlighted the Democrats’ “super-delegate” fix: the fact that the election was rigged for Hillary before the first vote was cast.  And Donald Trump was out there, telling the world that poor Bernie can’t win because the election’s rigged.

Then, right before the Democrat convention, WikiLeaks published the bombshell that the primaries really were rigged against Bernie.  Of course, that didn’t change the winners and losers.  The DNC shuffled personnel and shut out those who objected to the phony election, and Hillary made history as the first female presidential nominee of a major party.  

Meanwhile, the media were busier than a cat covering crap on a hot tin roof trying to bury Hillary’s emerging scandals: an unsecured server used for classified information, obstruction of justice and destruction of evidence with 33,000 deleted, bleached emails, hammered iPhones, other “lost” government phones and devices. 

But Hillary’s got friends in high places.  FBI director Comey came forward to shut down the criminal stuff with a blanket acquittal of all charges. 

The press continued to manage Hillary’s campaign, didn’t report the crime stuff, addressed health issues only once the controversy was viral on Twitter, and were pretty much able to keep a lid on the damaging stuff.  Plus they were gaslighting the hell out of their viewers: “Hillary can’t lose,” “Polls show a Clinton landslide,” “Trump’s going to suffer the biggest electoral defeat in political history.”

With that kind of support, what could go wrong?

Kaboom!  You guessed it: the Lazio effect.  Unfortunately for Hillary, there were two candidates from major parties in the running, and that second option is always a death knell for Hill’s hopes.

Voters weren’t scared off by the phony polls.  They showed up in record-breaking numbers, stood in line for hours, and crawled over crushed glass to vote.  And as the media openly wepg, railed against white people, and begged someone to wake them from this nightmare, the votes were counted, and it was President Trump.  

At long last, Hillary was gone.  She slinked off into the woods, and people breathed a sigh of relief.  Surely, she won’t dare show her face in public again.  The humiliation’s too great, the loss too painful. 

But Hillary’s not capable of shame or embarrassment.  No, she sprang back onto the scene with a new book, What Happened.  Then she was back on TV to promote her book, to comment on every national tragedy, paint Puerto Rico as Trump’s Katrina, help Democrats push gun control after the Las Vegas massacre, sanction the NFL protest to our anthem.    

And now she’s inserting herself in our ally’s politics as well.  As Nigel Farage tweeted, “Hillary Clinton is part of the global elite that want to overturn Brexit. We will resist.

Yep, it’s back to the drawing board for Hillary.  Brexit was the first evidence that people can still have a voice in their government.  So Hillary’s working to undo Britain’s decision, to override the British people’s will and take back globalist control. 

Oh, you thought Hillary was out of the picture, that when she was defeated, humiliated in an electoral landslide, she’d be too disgraced to show her face in public?  Ha!

You think she’s gone?  She’s not gone.  That’s the whole point!  She’s never gone!  [We turn on the TV, and there’s Hillary.]



Source link

How Corrupt Are American Institutions?


Blame Sean Hannity. Or give him all the credit. The intrepid talk show host has been claiming for months that there is nothing to the Trump-Russia allegations, that the real tale of Russian collusion is linked to Hillary Clinton. The fact that very few people have taken this seriously has only caused the firebrand conservative to dig in deeper and repeat his talking points both more often and more fervently.

His insistence the Russian story would “boomerang” against the Democrats has been largely based on his communications (both on- and off-air) with Julian Assange and investigative reporters John Solomon and Sara Carter.

It seems like only yesterday justice was closing in on the Travel Office, Whitewater, the Clinton-era transfer of missile technology to the Chinese government, Fast and Furious, Solyndra, IRS harassment of conservative groups, the Clinton emails, Benghazi and a dozen others.

We might have believed Sean Hannity’s predictions, but we’d seen this movie before. Then came Tuesday. John Solomon and Alison Spann of the Hill and Sara Carter of Circa News had a story that may have broken open the largest national security scandal since the Rosenbergs.

In 2009, the Obama Justice Department began investigating a Russian plan to expand Russia’s atomic energy business by acquiring uranium in the United States. Through bribery, kickbacks, money laundering and extortion, the Russians were able to acquire 20% of the uranium mining rights in the United States. Shareholders in the Russian firm Rosatom funneled $145 million to the Clinton Foundation in the months leading up to the Obama administration’s approval of the transaction.

The sale was officially approved in 2010 by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), whose members included both Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Attorney General Eric Holder. Apparently neither Holder nor Clinton informed the other members of the committee just what an historic act of corruption they were participants to. Not only did the DOJ and FBI let the sale proceed, they sat on the information they had gathered and let the investigation drag on until 2015, when Rosatom executive Vadim Mikerin and other defendants reached plea deals to little fanfare.

Current Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein oversaw the FBI’s investigation, as did Andrew McCabe, the current deputy FBI director. And the man in charge of the FBI during most of the Rosatom investigation was none other than Robert Mueller, the special counsel now investigating Russian influence in the 2016 election.

The government informant at the heart of the case was (and remains) forbidden to speak to Congress by an Obama Justice Department gag order (that gag order has yet to be lifted by the Trump Justice Department).

If this story is true, then all our worst fears have been confirmed, and we are indeed living in a banana republic, with one set of rules for the rich and powerful, and another set of rules for everybody else.

The question going forward: what kind of country will we live in tomorrow? Now that we know that Russian collusion is real and that the Obama administration engaged in it, what will be done about it? Will the laws against government corruption finally be enforced, or will the guilty walk again as we’re treated to another round of Congressional committee show hearings?

This scandal will be a true test — perhaps the final test — of whether American government can still work for the people. If Republicans walk away from this story for fear of ruffling Democrat feathers, we will know that the fix is in.

A lot of reputations are on the line, beginning with that of Donald Trump. Will he demand of his administration that it faithfully execute the law, without fear or favor.

Then there’s Jeff Sessions. Our attorney general will have to determine if the Trump DOJ has the stomach to investigate the Obama DOJ. Sessions has a chance to end this affair with a reputation as a true champion of law and order. Then again, he may cement his image as a chivalrous knight of old, merciless to peasants who cross borders and deal drugs, but always ready to give his social and political peers the benefit of the doubt.

Congress’ reputation is on the line, too. Paul Ryan, Mitch McConnell and the rest of the GOP will have a lot to answer for if they fail to demand answers to hard questions. This isn’t a game of pin-the-tail-on-the-Trump anymore. The implications of the Clinton/Rosatom story can’t be overstated, and Congress must lead the charge in determining whether Andrew McCabe, Rod Rosenstein, and Robert Mueller should now have any role in an investigation dealing with Russian influence, and more importantly, whether they should have any role in government at all.

And finally, there’s the media. The New York Times recently announced an ad campaign with the slogan: “the truth is more important than ever.” It’s time to prove it. If Russian collusion was a problem yesterday – and the media has breathlessly told us this for ten months – then Russian collusion is a problem today, and the Clinton story should get all the attention the Trump story received and then some, especially seeing as how there’s actual evidence in the Clinton story. It’s probably too much to hope that the media will flip on the Democrats and report the truth, but if justice runs its course while the media pretends there’s nothing to see here, folks, then whatever shred of credibility the press has remaining will be gone.

The early returns aren’t promising. The relentlessly tweeting Trump hasn’t mentioned the story as of this writing. Jeff Sessions, in Capitol Hill testimony on Wednesday, offered only a cryptic statement that he would “review” Charles Grassley’s request that he look into the Clinton matter. (The ever-disappointing Sessions also suggested that Rod Rosenstein might be in charge of reviewing the propriety of an investigation that was led by Rod Rosenstein). On the bright side, Grassley’s committee has opened an inquiry into the matter, but then again, it’s hard to imagine a satisfying outcome to a story that begins with “Grassley’s committee has opened an inquiry…” As for the non-Hannity media, the Clinton story was met with stony silence (no denials, just silence). The big story Wednesday was not $145 million in bribes to the Clintons, but rather a controversy about whether Trump said something inappropriate or awkward to the wife of a soldier killed in battle during a phone call in which Trump offered his condolences.

If we are to remain a country of laws and not of men, the people we’ve chosen to uphold our institutions are going to have to do better than this. It’s one thing if our system of justice and our national security have been put up for sale; it’s quite another if the politicians and bureaucrats who did it face no consequences.

How corrupt are American institutions? We’ll know very soon. 

Blame Sean Hannity. Or give him all the credit. The intrepid talk show host has been claiming for months that there is nothing to the Trump-Russia allegations, that the real tale of Russian collusion is linked to Hillary Clinton. The fact that very few people have taken this seriously has only caused the firebrand conservative to dig in deeper and repeat his talking points both more often and more fervently.

His insistence the Russian story would “boomerang” against the Democrats has been largely based on his communications (both on- and off-air) with Julian Assange and investigative reporters John Solomon and Sara Carter.

It seems like only yesterday justice was closing in on the Travel Office, Whitewater, the Clinton-era transfer of missile technology to the Chinese government, Fast and Furious, Solyndra, IRS harassment of conservative groups, the Clinton emails, Benghazi and a dozen others.

We might have believed Sean Hannity’s predictions, but we’d seen this movie before. Then came Tuesday. John Solomon and Alison Spann of the Hill and Sara Carter of Circa News had a story that may have broken open the largest national security scandal since the Rosenbergs.

In 2009, the Obama Justice Department began investigating a Russian plan to expand Russia’s atomic energy business by acquiring uranium in the United States. Through bribery, kickbacks, money laundering and extortion, the Russians were able to acquire 20% of the uranium mining rights in the United States. Shareholders in the Russian firm Rosatom funneled $145 million to the Clinton Foundation in the months leading up to the Obama administration’s approval of the transaction.

The sale was officially approved in 2010 by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), whose members included both Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Attorney General Eric Holder. Apparently neither Holder nor Clinton informed the other members of the committee just what an historic act of corruption they were participants to. Not only did the DOJ and FBI let the sale proceed, they sat on the information they had gathered and let the investigation drag on until 2015, when Rosatom executive Vadim Mikerin and other defendants reached plea deals to little fanfare.

Current Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein oversaw the FBI’s investigation, as did Andrew McCabe, the current deputy FBI director. And the man in charge of the FBI during most of the Rosatom investigation was none other than Robert Mueller, the special counsel now investigating Russian influence in the 2016 election.

The government informant at the heart of the case was (and remains) forbidden to speak to Congress by an Obama Justice Department gag order (that gag order has yet to be lifted by the Trump Justice Department).

If this story is true, then all our worst fears have been confirmed, and we are indeed living in a banana republic, with one set of rules for the rich and powerful, and another set of rules for everybody else.

The question going forward: what kind of country will we live in tomorrow? Now that we know that Russian collusion is real and that the Obama administration engaged in it, what will be done about it? Will the laws against government corruption finally be enforced, or will the guilty walk again as we’re treated to another round of Congressional committee show hearings?

This scandal will be a true test — perhaps the final test — of whether American government can still work for the people. If Republicans walk away from this story for fear of ruffling Democrat feathers, we will know that the fix is in.

A lot of reputations are on the line, beginning with that of Donald Trump. Will he demand of his administration that it faithfully execute the law, without fear or favor.

Then there’s Jeff Sessions. Our attorney general will have to determine if the Trump DOJ has the stomach to investigate the Obama DOJ. Sessions has a chance to end this affair with a reputation as a true champion of law and order. Then again, he may cement his image as a chivalrous knight of old, merciless to peasants who cross borders and deal drugs, but always ready to give his social and political peers the benefit of the doubt.

Congress’ reputation is on the line, too. Paul Ryan, Mitch McConnell and the rest of the GOP will have a lot to answer for if they fail to demand answers to hard questions. This isn’t a game of pin-the-tail-on-the-Trump anymore. The implications of the Clinton/Rosatom story can’t be overstated, and Congress must lead the charge in determining whether Andrew McCabe, Rod Rosenstein, and Robert Mueller should now have any role in an investigation dealing with Russian influence, and more importantly, whether they should have any role in government at all.

And finally, there’s the media. The New York Times recently announced an ad campaign with the slogan: “the truth is more important than ever.” It’s time to prove it. If Russian collusion was a problem yesterday – and the media has breathlessly told us this for ten months – then Russian collusion is a problem today, and the Clinton story should get all the attention the Trump story received and then some, especially seeing as how there’s actual evidence in the Clinton story. It’s probably too much to hope that the media will flip on the Democrats and report the truth, but if justice runs its course while the media pretends there’s nothing to see here, folks, then whatever shred of credibility the press has remaining will be gone.

The early returns aren’t promising. The relentlessly tweeting Trump hasn’t mentioned the story as of this writing. Jeff Sessions, in Capitol Hill testimony on Wednesday, offered only a cryptic statement that he would “review” Charles Grassley’s request that he look into the Clinton matter. (The ever-disappointing Sessions also suggested that Rod Rosenstein might be in charge of reviewing the propriety of an investigation that was led by Rod Rosenstein). On the bright side, Grassley’s committee has opened an inquiry into the matter, but then again, it’s hard to imagine a satisfying outcome to a story that begins with “Grassley’s committee has opened an inquiry…” As for the non-Hannity media, the Clinton story was met with stony silence (no denials, just silence). The big story Wednesday was not $145 million in bribes to the Clintons, but rather a controversy about whether Trump said something inappropriate or awkward to the wife of a soldier killed in battle during a phone call in which Trump offered his condolences.

If we are to remain a country of laws and not of men, the people we’ve chosen to uphold our institutions are going to have to do better than this. It’s one thing if our system of justice and our national security have been put up for sale; it’s quite another if the politicians and bureaucrats who did it face no consequences.

How corrupt are American institutions? We’ll know very soon. 



Source link

The Mythical Far Right


Few ideas are as silly or destructive as the idea that there is an “ideological spectrum” that has at one extreme Nazis and fascists and at the other end communists.  There is no “far right” that connects in any way with conservatism.  The communists and Nazis are not simply totalitarians, but totalitarians who believe in almost identical values.  That is why Orwell in 1984 could describe an Inner Party that everyone understands but fits nowhere on an “ideological spectrum.”

Moving too far in the direction of Ronald Reagan and Barry Goldwater never, ever leads to totalitarianism, but moving too far in the direction of Hillary Clinton or Nancy Pelosi always leads to totalitarianism.  All totalitarians believe in is power and all the goodies that flow from a monopoly of power.  That is why the vast majority of German communists joined the Nazi Party after it came to power and why practically all the Nazi leadership was composed of Marxists and radical socialists.

There was a reason why the word commu-Nazi was once on the lips of pundits in the free democratic West.  Nazis, communists, and fascists were virtually indistinguishable in their rhetoric, programs, and actions.  All hated God, particularly Christianity; all loved statism, particularly highly centralized statism (the destruction of the individuality of the states of Germany was noted in 1934 as the salient political change wrought by Nazis); and all demanded the rule by political party and not by normal government.

What is meant, then, by the “danger of the far right” – like what we have seen in recent European elections, particularly last month in Germany and this month in Austria?  If that danger is anti-Semitism, then we must grasp the grim fact that the notional “left” is anti-Semitic and has been for a long time.  The Soviets were virulently hateful toward Jews and treated Jews worse than the tsars did.  Iran, which routinely threatens the destruction of Israel, could be placed on the “far left” rather than the “far right” if we must subscribe to the illogical “ideological spectrum.”

What about grievances to victim groups?  Again, the Nazis based their entire argument for power on the victimization of the German people.  As with all lies by totalitarians, there was a smidgen of truth in Nazi complaining.  The Allies starved Germans after the Armistice to force better terms, and the Allies either denied plebiscites (in Austria and in Alsace-Lorraine) or ignored the results of plebiscites (in Silesia).  But this minor oppression of Germans never justified another world war or a holocaust. 

Why, then, do totalitarians continue to profess the existence of “extremist” groups on the ends of the “ideological spectrum”?  If there is no ideological spectrum, then facts, policy positions, and intellectual integrity are the only arguments for asking people to trust anyone with power.  We see in America some people who would love that to be the determining factor in elections and some people who would recoil in horror at that consequence.

What does the manifestation of so-called “far right” electoral successes really mean?  It means that some politicians are brave enough to deny the consolidation of power in tighter and smaller groups, which means an assertion of nationalism (or in America, federalism) and a rejection of such farcical illusions as the European Union or the United Nations.  It also means that voters are beginning to see the light, perhaps just before sunset.  This “far right” means also the decentralization of power right down to the individual and away from the state. 

It also means the assertion of historic values of Western civilization, and it means a defense of those values against totalitarians, which means radical Islam, Marxism, and all other groups who are intent upon the destruction of Western civilization.  These political movements in Britain, France, Germany, and Austria, and elsewhere in Europe, are “extremist” only in defending these vital and noble traditions against the real mobs and gangs of our planet.  We should hope these movements prevail in Europe and the rest of the Western world.  They are, in many ways, our only hope.

Few ideas are as silly or destructive as the idea that there is an “ideological spectrum” that has at one extreme Nazis and fascists and at the other end communists.  There is no “far right” that connects in any way with conservatism.  The communists and Nazis are not simply totalitarians, but totalitarians who believe in almost identical values.  That is why Orwell in 1984 could describe an Inner Party that everyone understands but fits nowhere on an “ideological spectrum.”

Moving too far in the direction of Ronald Reagan and Barry Goldwater never, ever leads to totalitarianism, but moving too far in the direction of Hillary Clinton or Nancy Pelosi always leads to totalitarianism.  All totalitarians believe in is power and all the goodies that flow from a monopoly of power.  That is why the vast majority of German communists joined the Nazi Party after it came to power and why practically all the Nazi leadership was composed of Marxists and radical socialists.

There was a reason why the word commu-Nazi was once on the lips of pundits in the free democratic West.  Nazis, communists, and fascists were virtually indistinguishable in their rhetoric, programs, and actions.  All hated God, particularly Christianity; all loved statism, particularly highly centralized statism (the destruction of the individuality of the states of Germany was noted in 1934 as the salient political change wrought by Nazis); and all demanded the rule by political party and not by normal government.

What is meant, then, by the “danger of the far right” – like what we have seen in recent European elections, particularly last month in Germany and this month in Austria?  If that danger is anti-Semitism, then we must grasp the grim fact that the notional “left” is anti-Semitic and has been for a long time.  The Soviets were virulently hateful toward Jews and treated Jews worse than the tsars did.  Iran, which routinely threatens the destruction of Israel, could be placed on the “far left” rather than the “far right” if we must subscribe to the illogical “ideological spectrum.”

What about grievances to victim groups?  Again, the Nazis based their entire argument for power on the victimization of the German people.  As with all lies by totalitarians, there was a smidgen of truth in Nazi complaining.  The Allies starved Germans after the Armistice to force better terms, and the Allies either denied plebiscites (in Austria and in Alsace-Lorraine) or ignored the results of plebiscites (in Silesia).  But this minor oppression of Germans never justified another world war or a holocaust. 

Why, then, do totalitarians continue to profess the existence of “extremist” groups on the ends of the “ideological spectrum”?  If there is no ideological spectrum, then facts, policy positions, and intellectual integrity are the only arguments for asking people to trust anyone with power.  We see in America some people who would love that to be the determining factor in elections and some people who would recoil in horror at that consequence.

What does the manifestation of so-called “far right” electoral successes really mean?  It means that some politicians are brave enough to deny the consolidation of power in tighter and smaller groups, which means an assertion of nationalism (or in America, federalism) and a rejection of such farcical illusions as the European Union or the United Nations.  It also means that voters are beginning to see the light, perhaps just before sunset.  This “far right” means also the decentralization of power right down to the individual and away from the state. 

It also means the assertion of historic values of Western civilization, and it means a defense of those values against totalitarians, which means radical Islam, Marxism, and all other groups who are intent upon the destruction of Western civilization.  These political movements in Britain, France, Germany, and Austria, and elsewhere in Europe, are “extremist” only in defending these vital and noble traditions against the real mobs and gangs of our planet.  We should hope these movements prevail in Europe and the rest of the Western world.  They are, in many ways, our only hope.



Source link

We Are All Harvey Weinstein's Victims…and Enablers


The Harvey Weinstein story continues to reverberate, as new accusations, denunciations, or other consequences of his decades of sexual harassment seem to come to light every day.  Weinstein has dutifully been abandoned by company, industry, friends, politicians, and family.

The movie and television industry now appears to be focused on reassuring the public that the era of “sexually predatory behavior and workplace harassment in our industry is over.”  That appears to be a tall order.  Before such a declaration can be made, we must first understand what is “over.”  The scandal is about more than mere sexual misconduct or even rape.

Of all of the articles and accounts of this scandal, the most telling so far appeared in the Weekly Standard on October 9.  Lee Smith, instead of merely repeating fresh condemnations, focused on how Weinstein had gotten the industry to protect him for so long.  Weinstein’s power in both the movie and publishing industries insured that he could purchase an army of enablers.  But simply stating that fact does not go far enough.  One must imagine the relevant scenarios and take them to their logical conclusions, as does Smith:

They [the “journalists” who protected Weinstein] wouldn’t dream of crossing a guy who could turn them into culture heroes with a phone call. Hey, I just optioned your novel and I already know who’s going to make the movie. And oh yeah, please confirm that you don’t, like I think I may have heard, have a reporter looking into a story about me.

Imagine the implications of that scenario.  Weinstein’s sexual assaults became so frequent that his publishing and moviemaking decisions were geared toward covering up those assaults.  Those whose employees might be investigating Weinstein became prime candidates to have their articles turn into books and movies.  Instant stardom and riches awaited those who would keep quiet.  

Over the past thirty years, few individuals have exercised more influence over the national culture than Harvey Weinstein.  His movies have been well known.  At one time, “Miramax bought the rights to every big story published in magazines throughout [New York] city.”  His financial contributions bought access and more to the White House.  He made careers from Hollywood to New York to Washington.  I need not list his beneficiaries, but they are well known (some of whom now issue obligatory press releases denouncing Weinstein’s decades of mayhem).

Not only did this influence provide cover for Weinstein as he victimized Hollywood’s women, but it created a whole new class of victims who have been ignored over the past week (and apparently the previous few decades).  I refer to Hollywood’s consumers.  We complain about our choices in movies (and television).  We lament that there is nothing to watch (even though we spend exorbitant amounts to see and subscribe to these nothings).  There have always been theories as to why our entertainment lacks quality.  Now Harvey Weinstein has provided us with the most interesting theory of all.  If the Weekly Standard’s scenario is correct, then Weinstein’s choices in movies and even book options were motivated not by quality (or even his own bottom line), but by the need to cover up rape and sexual harassment.

The nation’s media now devote endless bandwidth to ever more breathless denunciations by those who were all too happy to take Weinstein’s money as long as the accusations could be squelched.  But instead of serving as a conduit for the press releases of Weinstein’s former allies and enablers, maybe our nation’s “journalists” should try a different approach.  Maybe they should research actual correlations between Weinstein’s movies and his cover-ups.  We now have enough accusations to span several decades of movie production and distribution.  How hard could it be for the New York Times or the Washington Post to figure out which Miramax movies resulted from which rape coverups?  Who was Weinstein paying off by approving or distributing which movie?

The Washington Post still takes credit for bringing down President Nixon in the Watergate scandal more than four decades ago.  The powers that be are still (as of 2017) writing books and making movies about Watergate.  Exploring the motivations behind particular movie investments should be child’s play by comparison.  There is enough material here for decades of new articles, books, and movies.

Weinstein’s offenses arguably have done more damage than anything that happened in the Watergate Hotel in 1972.  The movies that occupy our theaters (and enter our homes through cable and DVD) set the tone for our culture more than any other contributing factor.  That the purpose of those movies was to aid Weinstein in bribing journalists into silence would be of interest to the people who have devoted many hours of their leisure time to sitting through those movies.

In our naïveté, we expect that movie-makers try to make the best possible product.  We note continuity errors and inconsistencies in a storyline.  We criticize acting or directing and wonder why a particular scene (or the entire movie) is not somehow better.  But we have never considered that the game might be rigged from the start.  When expensive movie projects are “green-lighted” for the purpose of concealing sexual harassment, it becomes apparent that Hollywood has other motivations than our enjoyment (or even its own bottom line). 

If recent press releases are any indication, it appears that Weinstein was not alone.  The problem appears to be widespread.  Who knows how many movie deals resulted from the need to cover up some sex scandal?  How many scandals are our movie dollars suppressing?  Should we simply applaud Hollywood for belatedly denouncing Weinstein and then file back into the theaters?

Unlike the powers that be in Hollywood, the average consumer does not have money to waste for the purpose of hiding someone else’s sexual harassment scandal.  Our dollars are limited.  Our time is limited.  Yet we have dutifully entered the theaters and paid our cable bills for decades for the now apparent purpose of enabling an alleged rapist (and others).  Why bother to oppress the peasants when the peasants will oppress themselves? 

But we are not bound by the past.  Just because we have supported Hollywood and its various unknown agendas does not mean we must do so forever.  We have other things to do with our time.  We will never get back the hours we spent mesmerized in front of the screens (both big and small).  But now that the truth has blown up in all of our faces, what excuse do we have to continue filing into theaters and vegetating in front of our televisions?  While the whole truth may never be known, we need no longer care if we would only find something else to do and leave Hollywood to drown in its own swamp.

The Harvey Weinstein story continues to reverberate, as new accusations, denunciations, or other consequences of his decades of sexual harassment seem to come to light every day.  Weinstein has dutifully been abandoned by company, industry, friends, politicians, and family.

The movie and television industry now appears to be focused on reassuring the public that the era of “sexually predatory behavior and workplace harassment in our industry is over.”  That appears to be a tall order.  Before such a declaration can be made, we must first understand what is “over.”  The scandal is about more than mere sexual misconduct or even rape.

Of all of the articles and accounts of this scandal, the most telling so far appeared in the Weekly Standard on October 9.  Lee Smith, instead of merely repeating fresh condemnations, focused on how Weinstein had gotten the industry to protect him for so long.  Weinstein’s power in both the movie and publishing industries insured that he could purchase an army of enablers.  But simply stating that fact does not go far enough.  One must imagine the relevant scenarios and take them to their logical conclusions, as does Smith:

They [the “journalists” who protected Weinstein] wouldn’t dream of crossing a guy who could turn them into culture heroes with a phone call. Hey, I just optioned your novel and I already know who’s going to make the movie. And oh yeah, please confirm that you don’t, like I think I may have heard, have a reporter looking into a story about me.

Imagine the implications of that scenario.  Weinstein’s sexual assaults became so frequent that his publishing and moviemaking decisions were geared toward covering up those assaults.  Those whose employees might be investigating Weinstein became prime candidates to have their articles turn into books and movies.  Instant stardom and riches awaited those who would keep quiet.  

Over the past thirty years, few individuals have exercised more influence over the national culture than Harvey Weinstein.  His movies have been well known.  At one time, “Miramax bought the rights to every big story published in magazines throughout [New York] city.”  His financial contributions bought access and more to the White House.  He made careers from Hollywood to New York to Washington.  I need not list his beneficiaries, but they are well known (some of whom now issue obligatory press releases denouncing Weinstein’s decades of mayhem).

Not only did this influence provide cover for Weinstein as he victimized Hollywood’s women, but it created a whole new class of victims who have been ignored over the past week (and apparently the previous few decades).  I refer to Hollywood’s consumers.  We complain about our choices in movies (and television).  We lament that there is nothing to watch (even though we spend exorbitant amounts to see and subscribe to these nothings).  There have always been theories as to why our entertainment lacks quality.  Now Harvey Weinstein has provided us with the most interesting theory of all.  If the Weekly Standard’s scenario is correct, then Weinstein’s choices in movies and even book options were motivated not by quality (or even his own bottom line), but by the need to cover up rape and sexual harassment.

The nation’s media now devote endless bandwidth to ever more breathless denunciations by those who were all too happy to take Weinstein’s money as long as the accusations could be squelched.  But instead of serving as a conduit for the press releases of Weinstein’s former allies and enablers, maybe our nation’s “journalists” should try a different approach.  Maybe they should research actual correlations between Weinstein’s movies and his cover-ups.  We now have enough accusations to span several decades of movie production and distribution.  How hard could it be for the New York Times or the Washington Post to figure out which Miramax movies resulted from which rape coverups?  Who was Weinstein paying off by approving or distributing which movie?

The Washington Post still takes credit for bringing down President Nixon in the Watergate scandal more than four decades ago.  The powers that be are still (as of 2017) writing books and making movies about Watergate.  Exploring the motivations behind particular movie investments should be child’s play by comparison.  There is enough material here for decades of new articles, books, and movies.

Weinstein’s offenses arguably have done more damage than anything that happened in the Watergate Hotel in 1972.  The movies that occupy our theaters (and enter our homes through cable and DVD) set the tone for our culture more than any other contributing factor.  That the purpose of those movies was to aid Weinstein in bribing journalists into silence would be of interest to the people who have devoted many hours of their leisure time to sitting through those movies.

In our naïveté, we expect that movie-makers try to make the best possible product.  We note continuity errors and inconsistencies in a storyline.  We criticize acting or directing and wonder why a particular scene (or the entire movie) is not somehow better.  But we have never considered that the game might be rigged from the start.  When expensive movie projects are “green-lighted” for the purpose of concealing sexual harassment, it becomes apparent that Hollywood has other motivations than our enjoyment (or even its own bottom line). 

If recent press releases are any indication, it appears that Weinstein was not alone.  The problem appears to be widespread.  Who knows how many movie deals resulted from the need to cover up some sex scandal?  How many scandals are our movie dollars suppressing?  Should we simply applaud Hollywood for belatedly denouncing Weinstein and then file back into the theaters?

Unlike the powers that be in Hollywood, the average consumer does not have money to waste for the purpose of hiding someone else’s sexual harassment scandal.  Our dollars are limited.  Our time is limited.  Yet we have dutifully entered the theaters and paid our cable bills for decades for the now apparent purpose of enabling an alleged rapist (and others).  Why bother to oppress the peasants when the peasants will oppress themselves? 

But we are not bound by the past.  Just because we have supported Hollywood and its various unknown agendas does not mean we must do so forever.  We have other things to do with our time.  We will never get back the hours we spent mesmerized in front of the screens (both big and small).  But now that the truth has blown up in all of our faces, what excuse do we have to continue filing into theaters and vegetating in front of our televisions?  While the whole truth may never be known, we need no longer care if we would only find something else to do and leave Hollywood to drown in its own swamp.



Source link