Category Archives: Tulsi Gabbard

Bookworm Beat 10/25/19: Media still lies about the Russia hoax, plus more

Mueller’s report didn’t stop media lies about the Russia Hoax. As Bill Barr closes in on the culprits the lies get more extreme and desperate. Plus more.

(This is a companion post to the No. 28 Bookworm Podcast, which I uploaded early today.)

Lies from the Left about the Russia hoax. The second part of my podcast is a short rehash of my much longer post about the New York Times’ spin on the news that AG Barr has elevated to a criminal investigation John Durham’s look at the origins of the Russia hoax. I won’t repeat that here, but I urge you to check out my post if you haven’t already.

On MSNBC, a former Obama official spins an amazing web of lies about the Russia hoax. On his podcast today, Derek Hunter played a snippet of Andrea Mitchell’s Report, a daily MSNBC program I’d never heard of before. It isn’t a news report; it’s just Democrat spin.

The topic from this particular episode, broadcast on October 22, was AG Barr’s investigation (and this was before the news about it’s going criminal broke). I can’t find a copy of the video to embed, but you can see the video here.

What fascinated me was the opening statement from Mitchell’s guest, a woman named Wendy Sherman. For those who, like me, had never heard of Sherman, she was the Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs in the State Department from 2011 to 2015. She was the lead negotiator for the Iran deal and also conducted nuclear negotiations with North Korea. This is a woman comfortable with selling out to dictators.

Here’s what she had to say about the investigation Barr is overseeing:

That short statement contains myriad lies, obfuscations, and misdirections, which I’ll address in a minute. The thing that most shocked me about it, though, was the opening sentence:

From the outside, this looks like a continuation of undermining the institutions of the United States government.

Why did that shock me? Because you need to understand what’s really been going on since 2016: The Left, using the FBI, the CIA, the NSA, the DOJ, the NSC, and the State Department, attempted a coup against a duly elected American president — after the Left’s attempt to fix the election failed.

Think about that.

Of the acts and institutions I mentioned, only the election is in the Constitution. The Constitution says who will be elected (the President) and prescribes a mechanism for the people to speak in a way that avoids mob rule and that assures a voice for everyone, not just for major population centers (i.e., the Electoral College). The alphabet soup agencies therefore attacked a core Constitutional function. That’s a big deal.

And what about those agencies? None of them show up in the Constitution. The State Department is old, having been established in 1789 to help the president carry out his constitutional foreign policy responsibilities, but it itself is not a core constitutional creation. The position of Attorney General also came into being in 1789, but it too is not mentioned in the Constitution. The Department of Justice itself didn’t come into being until 1870 and it too is not in the Constitution, neither the original or amended versions.

As for the alphabet soup agencies, here are their dates of origin and none of them have any Constitutional ties either:

  1. FBI – created in 1908, not in Constitution
  2. CIA – created in 1947, not in Constitution
  3. NSA – created in 1952, not in Constitution
  4. NSC – created in 1947, not in Constitution

So Sherman, in her opening sentence, is angry that bureaucracies are under attack, and not at all upset that the bureaucracies participated in a coup against a Constitutional election. She’s got it bass ackwards.

After getting everything wrong at a core, principled level, Sherman then swings into the obfuscation and lies:

The theory — it appears that Attorney General Barr is operating under is a debunked conspiracy that, I think, Ned can elaborate even more than I can.

You noticed, I’m sure, that while Sherman says “Ned can elaborate even more” she about the alleged “debunked conspiracy,” Sherman never explains it in the first place. The fact that she avoids is the Democrats horrible nightmare, which is Mueller’s reluctant admission that there was no Russian collusion. It was a fake.

Moreover, it was pursued by people who laundered information that tracked perfectly on a scheme first tried out on John McCain in 2008. (For more on that, I urge you to check out Dan Bongino’s books and podcasts.) In other words, there is no “debunked conspiracy theory.” There is just an actual conspiracy that’s slowly emerging from the darkness in which the actors hid it.

Then there’s this sentence:

It’s really crazy to be perfectly frank.

The sentence doesn’t have much substance, but I mention it for two reasons: First, it tracks the language of the whistle blower’s source (who I half-jokingly explained may be Triggly-Puff or someone similar considering his/her fragile sensibilities). That source, in trembling tones, called Trump’s perfectly ordinary conversation with Ukraine President Zelenskyy “crazy” and was completely “shaken” for that reason. Second, remember that the Democrats in the media have been pushing the argument that Trump is “crazy” and needs to be kicked out of office under the 25th Amendment. This word “crazy” has wormed its way into the Lefts’ collective psyche. Some would call it projection….

But here’s the really big lie Sherman utters:

Durham is a professional, but none the less it is quite concerning about what they’re doing and, indeed, I think it is raising questions among diplomats around the world who are being questioned about whether in fact Russia was responsible for interfering in our elections, of course they were, all of our agencies, all 17, of them have said they did and we need to really be on our toes about what will happen in the upcoming election.

That “17 agencies” claim is a hoax that started (surprise!) with Hillary Clinton in the final debate before the 2016 election. There, when she was talking about the hacked DNC server and John Podesta’s little phishing problem, she said,

We have 17, 17 intelligence agencies, civilian and military who have all concluded that these espionage attacks, these cyber attacks, come from the highest levels of the Kremlin. And they are designed to influence our election. I find that deeply disturbing.

Here’s what really happened: The Department of Homeland Security and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence issued a joint statement saying they were confident that the attacks on the DNC and other sites came from Russia. It was an official statement from the top of a combination of 16 agencies (plus the DNI). These 16 agencies are:

  1. Air Force Intelligence
  2. Army Intelligence
  3. CIA
  4. Coast Guard Intelligence
  5. Defense Intelligence Agency
  6. Office of Intelligence and Counter Intelligence for Energy Affairs
  7. Office of Intelligence and Analysis
  8. Bureau of Intelligence and Research
  9. Office of Terrorism and Financial Intelligence out of the Treasure Department
  10. Office of National Security Intelligence
  11. The Intelligence Branch of the Justice Department
  12. The Marine Corps Intelligence Activity
  13. The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency
  14. National Reconnaissance Office
  15. The National Security Agency/Central Security Service
  16. Office of Naval Intelligence

No one can tell me that the Coast Guard or the Navy or the National Reconnaissance Office or the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency were looking into the hacked DNC server. And, indeed, you don’t have to try spinning those lies to me.

That’s because we know what happened. The FBI showed up at the DNC and asked to look at the hacked server. The DNC refused, telling the FBI that a private company called Crowdstrike had looked at the server and fingered Russia — and that the FBI would have to live with that. The FBI, usually so zealous about protecting its territory, meekly acquiesced.

Crowdstrike, of course, has Ukraine ties, which is why President Trump, when talking to Zelenskyy, the new President of Ukraine, about the incredibly corrupt administration before Zelenksyy came on board, asked for Ukraine to look into Crowdstrike to help determine its connection to the claimed Russian collusion issue that roiled the Dems for three years. In other words, Trump is doing the work the FBI never did but lied about, and that the intelligence community lied about, and that Hillary then exaggerated and lied about, and that Wendy Sherman now lies about.

You can see how easily Sherman voiced all her lies, misdirection, and misrepresentaion . . . and how tedious it is to unpack and explain things. The criminal investigation had better have loud and clear results or the American public will never understand what happened.

All of this reminded me that, when it comes to the Left, you must never trust, but you must verify. Just think of what Mary McCarthy, a former Communist, had to say about Lillian Hellman, a communist until the day she died: “Every word [Hellman] writes is a lie, including ‘and’ and ‘the’.” Hellman sued for defamation. That was a bad idea.

For a little color, here’s a quotation from Phyllis Jacobson’s March 21, 2010, New Politics’ review of Joan Mellen’s Hellman and Hammett. New Politics, it should be said, is a socialist publication:

McCarthy started producing evidence of some of Hellman’s lies, including her statements indicating that she knew nothing about the Moscow Trials. Hellman had, she pointed out, signed statements applauding the guilty verdict. But then she produced the most damaging of all Hellman’s lies, the chapter in Pentimento, the second volume of her memoirs (later made into the film, Julia with Jane Fonda playing Hellman (Julia) to Vanessa Redgrave’s anti-fascist activist), in which Hellman portrays herself heroically carrying money into Nazi Germany for her socialist activist friend. A complete fabrication. Hellman had appropriated the life of Muriel Gardiner who later told her own story in Code Name Mary, a story Hellman had learned from their mutual friend, lawyer Wolf Schwabacher. Told by London that she would have to produce evidence of the real Julia to proceed with her case against McCarthy, Hellman was frantic and became tangled in a web of additional lies. She actually had the chutzpah to plan to visit Muriel Gardiner to ask Gardiner to say that she was not Julia, a meeting that never came off. Hellman still hadn’t thought her way out of her dilemma when McCarthy’s attorneys’ motion to have the case dismissed on the basis that Hellman was a public figure was denied. The case was scheduled to proceed. But it never did. Hellman died before that could happen.

(I was a teenager when the movie Julia came out and I saw it on its first run. I was uninformed regarding just about everything in that movie, but I still hated it with every fiber of my being, for it was so obviously a self-serving lie. I never willingly watched another Fonda or Redgrave movie after that.)

Are you ready for President Michelle Obama? Mike McDaniel thinks that, as the Democrat candidates continue to implode, putting people off with their personalities, lies, and Leftism, the Democrat Party will begin casting about for a savior. I think so too.

Hillary clearly thinks she’s that savior, but she’s completely nutty. In the same interview in which she attacked Tulsi Gabbard as a Russian asset, Hillary had this to offer as one of the reasons she lost in 2016 (emphasis mine):

I think it’s going to be the same as 2016. Don’t vote for the other guy. You don’t like me. Don’t vote for the other guy, because the other guy is going to do X, Y, and Z. Or the other guy did such terrible things. I’m going to show you in these flashing videos that appear and then disappear and they’re on the dark web and nobody can find them, but you’re going to see them and you’re going to see that person doing these horrible things.

As an aside, don’t let Hillary’s attack on Tulsi lull you into thinking Tulsi’s one of the good guys. Tulsi’s not a Russian asset and she has moments of sanity, plus I’ve been told she looks good in a bikini, but do not mistake her for anything but a stone cold Leftist. This is not a case of the enemy of my enemy is my friend. Just because Hillary doesn’t like Tulsi doesn’t mean you should.

So if Hillary’s not the one, who is? As I said, both Mike and I worry that it might be Michelle. Michelle’s claims that she doesn’t want to run mean nothing. She’ll answer the call if drafted.

Leftists love Michelle unreservedly and they know that she’ll be the second coming of Barack Obama. Moreover, while the sexism charge didn’t stick when Trump debated Hillary, because Hillary is so unlikeable and hard and unwomanly, don’t think Trump will have an easy time debating Michelle. Despite her more manly attributes, she still comes across as more feminine than Hillary. While she’s not as smart as Trump is, the fact that she’s a black woman will create optics so bad that even Trump might have problems opposing her in a debate.

The homeless industrial complex. PowerLine noted that a local television station in the San Francisco Bay Area revealed that, at least in the Bay Area, little of the money allocated to the homeless actually makes it to them.

In San Jose, for example, of $14 million in taxpayer money allocated to homeless, only $2 mil goes to homeless with the remaining 86% going to rental subsidies (which is arguably for the homeless) but also admin and “crafting plans”

Homelessness is big business for bureaucracy and the parasites it attracts. Ending homelessness is the worst thing that could happen to them.

Finding my people in Tennessee. Back in 2008, when Obama was the Democrat candidate and McCain, with Sarah Palin at his side, the Republican candidate, I got into a discussion with a Democrat who could not believe that I would let Palin get within a heartbeat of the presidency. I pointed out that she had significantly more executive experience than Obama and that she had several significant political accomplishments to her name. I also pointed out that Obama’s only accomplishment by 2008 was self-promotion.

The Democrat, exasperated, huffed at me, “She’s not one of us.”

I knew what he meant. We lived in the True Blue San Francisco Bay Area. We and all our friends went to top public and private colleges. We and all our friends were members of the professional class. We and all our friends (well, except for me), were pro-abortion, anti-fossil fuels, pro-“climate change is real”, anti-war, anti-gun, etc. And Palin wasn’t.

Fast forward 11 years, and here in Tennessee I’ve finally found my people. I’ve started attending a local Toastmasters to help me get over my microphone fear with podcasting.

The people who attend the meeting are lovely — very friendly, very interesting. Also, unlike my past community, they make open references to God and the Bible, with no attendant embarrassment; they make open, unashamed references to guns and hunting; and they discuss core political issues, such as the Electoral College and the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact in an intelligent, non-partisan way. (Toastmasters is not meant to be partisan, something I highly respect.)

I’m home at last.

The post Bookworm Beat 10/25/19: Media still lies about the Russia hoax, plus more appeared first on Watcher of Weasels.

No. 16 Bookworm Podcast: With Trump, stop listening and start paying attention

If listening to Trump irks you, stop listening and start focusing on his accomplishments. Then do the same for the Dem candidates. Then vote for Trump.

(If you prefer listening over reading, the companion podcast to this post is embedded below, or you can listen to it at Libsyn or at Apple podcasts. I’m trying to make a go of my podcasting so, if you like the podcasts, please share them with your friends and on social media. Giving my podcast good ratings helps too.)

When I’m bored, I watch video compilations showing how to do things better. Each video has 20-30 clips showing clever tricks for doing anything better (cleaning, packing, cooking, etc.). The videos are “show and tell,” without narration, but with a music soundtrack. These soundtracks are always horrible.

This video, viewed over 270,000,000 times, shows both the useful information and the horrible music:

The bad music doesn’t make me avoid the content. Instead, I mute the music.

There’s a point to his seemingly irrelevant anecdote: When NeverTrumpers start wittering on about about Trump’s latest bombastic tweet or speech, or another act of boastful puffery, I want to tell them to do as I do with my life-hacking videos: Turn off the sound and just focus on the content — the content, in this case, being his achievements in office.

It occurred to me that this would be an interesting test to apply as well to the top Democrat candidates, each of whom functions at three different levels: (1) Promises to the base; (2) personal style; and (3) actual accomplishments.

When it comes to promises to the base, the Dems are almost indistinguishable:

  • Free health care for everyone, including illegal aliens who will be let into the country without barrier and allowed to stay without limits;
  • Seizing all privately held guns;
  • Creating policies that ignore that human biology, absent statistically insignificant aberrations, divides humans into two sexes, male and female;
  • Ceding control over foreign policy, national security, and trade to international organizations (i.e., NATO and the UN);
  • Allowing China to continue using unfair, illegal trade practices to drain the world’s wealth into its coffers;
  • Bowing before the Iranian mullahs;
  • Treating totalitarian, misogynistic, homophobic, anti-Semitic, anti-Christian, blood-thirsty Palestinians as equal negotiating partners with the Israelis who have a full and free democracy; and
  • Using energy policy to roll us back to a pre-modern time without planes, trains, and automobiles, as well as without lights, heat, air-conditioning, computers, stable food supplies, clean water, and anything else that relies on a stable, abundant supply of energy.

(Andrew Yang’s proposed universal income and Tulsi’s slight differences on the border and abortion do not detract from the core Leftism of their policies. Also, on Israel, the candidates have been all over the board, but they seem to have coalesced around the realization that the base is hostile to Israel.)

On style points, what can I say? It’s always personal.

I personally find unappealing Kamala’s nasal, bored affect; Warren’s scolding schoolmarm; Bernie’s spit-flecked New York-accented hectoring; Booker’s Spartawuss self-righteousness; Tulsi’s flat, loud drone; Buttigieg’s precocious little boy; Klobuchar’s “Mother knows best ” vibe; Robert Francis O’Rourke’s shrill adolescent hipster act; Yang’s tech-savvy, hip Asian dude cutesiness; Williamson’s New Age, crystal-clutching love bombing; and, of course, Biden’s “confused old man yelling at the clouds” dementia.

Here’s the thing, though, about both personality and campaign promises: What we hear is unrelated to what is. As with those life hack videos, the auditory input is noise that disrupts our brain, obscuring our ability to see what’s going on. With this post, I’m asking you to try to look at the Democrat candidates and Donald Trump with the noise turned off. Look, instead, at the high (and low) points of who they are and what they’ve actually done or tried to do.

At the end of this post, you can see the full bullet-point lists I made giving bios for each candidate, followed by their significant accomplishments and failures. I made the lists the lazy way, relying almost entirely on information culled from Wikipedia, which tends to be Democrat friendly. For purposes of the body of this post, here’s a super-brief summary of the candidates’ highs and lows, again without the background noise of promises and personas:

Joe Biden was a marginal student, haunted by a plagiarism charge in law school; he had minimal private sector legal experience; he spent 44 years in D.C. (36 in the Senate and 8 as Veep); he ran twice for president, with plagiarism again a problem. While in D.C., he opposed federal busing; helped pass a crime law that stripped men from black communities; borked Robert Bork and hi-tech lynched Clarence Thomas; banned “assault weapons”; flipped and flopped on war; and opposed the Surge but supported the total withdrawal from Iraq that led to ISIS. He’s also way too handsy and sniffy with little girls and grown women.

Elizabeth Warren was a decent student who ended up as a career legal academic, first in Houston, then in Austin, then Pennsylvania, and finally at Harvard. It’s believed she achieved her last two gigs because she claimed, falsely, to be Native American. I had her for banking law during her Austin years and hated her, finding her confusing and dishonest.

Warren gained fame for two studies, the first pointing out the obvious, which is that good schools raise housing prices, causing people to incur high debt loads, and the second, using shoddy research methods, making inflated claims about medical bankruptcies.

In addition to a high Harvard lecturer salary (combined with a low workload), she made many millions flipping foreclosed houses and advising corporations on legal matters that might not be too popular with her base, such as working for Dow Chemical on breast implant cases to limit its liability to women. Overnight, though, she turned into a fiery Leftists SJW. In addition to becoming famous for her pronouncements, her single concrete accomplishment in politics was to create the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, an agency given the task of overseeing the American financial sector without itself being overseen or answerable to any of the three constitutional branches of government.

Bernie Sanders is now and always has been a professional communist. He lives and breathes communism. Unlike today’s millennials, who don’t remember the Cold War and who learn nothing in college, he has no excuse for celebrating communism, for he saw played out in real time how communism killed approximately 100 million people around the world, and brought hunger and terror to countless others. He’s held political office since 1981. During that time, he putzed around in a small Vermont town and then made speeches in the House and Senate. He was once pro-gun but is no longer. He is technically Jewish, but is hostile to Israel and recently accepted an endorsement from Linda Sarsour, an open anti-Semite. He dreams of bringing every aspect of American lives under the government’s — that is, Bernie’s — total control.

Kamala Harris was raised in an extremely affluent household (and, like Obama, raised for many years outside of the U.S.). A lawyer, she got her political start in the bed of California House Speaker Willie Brown, effectively sleeping her way to the middle. She was elected as San Francisco’s District Attorney and then as California’s Attorney General. She was often hard on crime, which ought to be an honorable thing but, in today’s world, is a record that she’s trying to bury. She also was involved in several ethics scandals and Tulsi rightly accused her of violating prisoners’ rights and condoning unconstitutional prosecutorial misconduct. As Senator, she’s done nothing but oppose Trump.

Cory Booker has born the burden of being a light-skinned black(ish) man, from an affluent background, when all he’s always wanted was to be is a dark-skinned black man from the mean streets. He’s hyper-educated, having attended Stanford (a B.A. and an M.A.), Oxford (on a Rhodes scholarship), and Yale (J.D.). He got off to a good start as mayor of Newark, slightly lowering crime in his first two years, but that didn’t last. Corruption dogged his administration, especially with the $100 million Mark Zuckerberg gave the city for education reform. The money benefited everyone but Newark kids. Once in the Senate, Booker worked on gay rights initiatives, was pro-Israel, wanted tougher sanctions against Iran, and, during the Kavanaugh hearings, called himself Spartacus for publishing documents that the Republicans had already produced. He also thinks we should all be vegans.

Pete Buttigieg is gay, married, hyper-educated, and portrays himself as an expert on “woke” Christianity (not to be confused with textual Christianity). He attended Harvard and Oxford. He joined the Naval Reserves (good for him) and spent 7 months in Afghanistan, mostly working as a driver in a dangerous region. (Since he’s multilingual and was in naval intelligence, I assume the driving gig utilized his language skills.) He’s in his second term as mayor of South Bend, one of America’s most crime-ridden mid-sized cities. In that role, he incurred $800,000 in settlement costs connected with firing the city’s first black police chief; repaired or demolished 1,000 blighted properties; and started a nightly laser light display.

Julian Castro comes from a radical household, for his mother co-founded La Raza. He attended Stanford, admitting that he was an affirmative action admission. He then got a degree from Harvard law. He spent the next few years alternating between local San Antonio politics and running a small private law practice. He eventually became San Antonio’s mayor, which was a springboard to becoming Obama’s HUD secretary. In San Antonio, he created “a community wide visioning effort” and used increased sales taxes to expand pre-K education. As HUD secretary, he claims to have stabilized the housing market, helped after community disasters, and worked on lead safety in government housing.

Amy Klobuchar got a B.A. from Yale and a J.D. from the University of Chicago, after which she worked as a corporate lawyer before going into local politics. She’s been in the U.S. Senate since 2006. She has her name on lots of successful bills, primarily (it seems) because she attaches herself like a leech to anodyne causes that offend no one. She was recently outed as an exceptionally abusive boss. Her public vibe is “Mother knows best.” Her private behavior is “Mommie Dearest.”

Robert Francis O’Rourke is a rich, college-educated slacker who bummed around for years, married a billionaire’s daughter, and used a stint on the El Paso City Council to get elected to the House of Representatives. He made his name nationally by running unsuccessfully for Ted Cruz’s Senate seat. While in the House, he focused on making the southern border more efficient (better trained officers, lower waiting times). When Israel was under attack by Hamas, he refused to support funding for the Iron Dome defense system, saying that American had been cruel to Israel by being kind, so he was going to be kind by being cruel . . . or something.

Andrew Yang is the child of a wealthy Taiwanese immigrant household who went to a very chi-chi boarding school and then got a B.A. from Brown and a J.D. from Columbia. He worked as a lawyer and test prep instructor being founding a start up aimed at funding entrepreneurs whom his company located by trolling colleges for top graduates. He claims to be good at math.

Tulsi Gabbard has a B.S. in Business. She got elected to Hawaii’s legislature and, while there, joined the Army National Guard. She was called up and spent a year in Iraq as a specialist for a medical company. Apparently it agreed with her, because she attended Officer Candidate School, graduating with honors. As a second lieutenant, she became a military police officer. She served in Kuwait, training the Kuwait National Guard, and currently holds the rank of major. On the home front, after rising through Hawaii politics, she was elected to the U.S. House. She has worked on successful bills to improve airport screenings for handicapped vets and to give Congressional medals of honor to Filipino and Filipino-American WWII vets. She’s tried to return elections to paper ballots. She shows occasional strong common sense (paper ballots, no third trimester elections, better border security), but is mostly a toe-the-line Leftist.

Marianne Williamson is a college drop-out who made her name as a New Age guru, writing books, lecturing, and ministering. She created an organization, with which she is no longer associated, that brought food to HIV/AIDS patients in L.A. She also created the Global Renaissance Alliance, an initiative to organize worldwide “citizen salons” to pray for peace and Leftist causes. She recently made news for her insight that conservatives are nice people compared to Leftists.

Donald Trump . . . where to begin? He was a phenomenally popular businessman who took the golden spoon he was born with and turned it into a diamond-encrusted platinum spoon. He made himself and his persona one of his best and most popular products; built high-end properties all over the world; created a reputation for getting projects done on time and under budget; was famous in the New York construction world for giving women and minorities prominent positions on projects; has always fought to win; used bankruptcy strategically, in a way that harmed creditors, but greatly increased his wealth; and created the most popular reality show in TV history – to name just a few things.

Without any political experience, he left every politically experienced Republican competitor in the dust and mowed over the woman that America’s powerful Leftist institutions had anointed as president. Once in office, he set about keeping his promises, from super-charging the economy, to trying to control illegal immigration, to wiping out ISIS on the battlefield, to criminal justice reform, to supporting Israel, to reining in China, supporting the Second Amendment, and more. You really need to check out the Trump laundry lists at the bottom of this post.

Seen this way, have turned off the noise, and promises, and personality quirks, none of the Democrats can hold a candle to Trump. Except for Andrew Yang and Marianne Williamson, neither of whom has ever held office, all that most of the Democrats have done is to run for and hold office. Their job histories are pathetic, their military service limited (although still respectable), and their records of accomplishments as politicians are scanty.

The only two who actually did accomplish some things over the years are Biden and Harris, and they’re either running from those records (e.g., Biden for supporting the Iraq War; Harris for being tough on crime) or they would be running from the records if they had any decency (e.g., Biden who invented “borking” and the politicization of the Supreme Court; Harris presiding over grossly unconstitutional prosecutorial misconduct).

Trump, for all his boasting and bombast, his wheeling and dealing as a developer, his bankruptcies and phoenix-like recoveries, is a man of tremendous accomplishments. Before he was president, he did things: he managed budgets, met deadlines, negotiated deals, entertained people, and created vast amounts of wealth for himself and others. Since he’s been president, as I noted in brief above and spelled out at greater length below, he’s supercharged the economy; worked to secure our borders; bolstered our allies; worked to undercut China’s economic, national security, and technological attacks on America; supported the Second Amendment, and generally been the most successful conservative president in American history.

If you’re an ostensibly conservative but allow his personality to blind you to his accomplishments, please admit that you’re not really a conservative. And if your hatred of Trump leads you to throw your weight to that bunch of nonentities cluttering Democrat primary ballots, just own up to the fact that you’re a Leftist.

As for those people who are not very politically engaged, I suggest you go with a proven winner. Looked at objectively, without the noise and the personality parade, the Dem candidates are, as I said nonentities, as well as being hypocrites and largely ineffectual politicians. Moreover, I would argue that, in Bernie’s case, he is a genuinely evil man who managed to live through the Cold War without ever acknowledging the 100 million or so deaths communism caused in his lifetime. That’s evil. The others are just various shades of Red with the front-runners – Biden, Harris, and Warren – invariably behaving in ways inconsistent with the policies they wish to foist on the rest of us.



ADDENDUM: CANDIDATE INFORMATION

Joe Biden’s quickie bio:

  • Graduated from college with a BA in history and poly sci.
  • Was accused of plagiarism at Syracuse University Law School.
  • Practiced law briefly as a public defender and then went into private practice.
  • Won his first local political office, for county councilor, one year after graduating from law school, while continuing his private practice.
  • Four years after graduating from law school, through a series of flukes, he become a U.S. Senator for Delaware. He spent the next 36 years in the Senate, leaving only when Obama needed a Veep who wouldn’t threaten him.
  • Ran unsuccessfully for president in 1988 and 2008. His 1988 campaign was damaged when he plagiarized a British politician’s speech.

What Joe Biden has accomplished or failed to accomplish:

  • Opposed federal busing legislation.
  • Helped pass the Comprehensive Crime Control Act, which saw large numbers of black men imprisoned.
  • Sought arms control during the Cold War.
  • Took the lead in borking Robert Bork and hi-tech lynching Clarence Thomas.
  • Spearheaded the 1994 “Assault Weapons Ban”.
  • While on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee took the lead in ceding American power to international organizations such as NATO and the UN.
  • Supporter bombing the Balkans.
  • Opposed the first Gulf War.
  • Supported initiating both the Second Gulf War and the war in Afghanistan before turning against the former, to the point at which he opposed the successful Surge, after which he supported the devastating total withdrawal that paved the way for ISIS.
  • Took the lead on the Violence Against Women Act, giving federal civil remedies to women on the receiving end of gender-motivated crime. Biden considers it “the single most significant legislation that I’ve crafted during my 35-year tenure in the Senate.” Fortunately for Biden, the act did not cover pawing or nuzzling women and little girls.

Elizabeth Warren’s quickie bio:

  • Grew up as a financially insecure middle-class white girl in Oklahoma.
  • Got a B.S. degree from the University of Houston in speech pathology and audiology.
  • Attended Rutgers Law School, and did it while raising one child and pregnant with another, something that deserves kudos.
  • Lecturer at Rutgers Law School.
  • Associate Dean at the University of Houston Law Center.
  • Professor at the University of Texas School of Law, which is where I admit to my bias against her: I took Warren for banking law. While I’d admit that I was a slightly clueless student, she was a horrible teacher. She never finished one thought before going on to the next one. She also did something I’ve always found unforgivable, which was lying about what would be on the test. I earned a decent grade in the class, so this is not sour grapes on my part. I just genuinely dislike her.
  • Professor at the University of Pennsylvania Law School.
  • Professor at Harvard Law School, which was under the mistaken impression that it was hiring a Native American woman — something it did because she formally identified as a native American woman.

What Warren has accomplished or failed to accomplish:

  • Irked Native Americans by stealing their identity for professional advancement.
  • Made her fame with the insight that middle-class people bought expensive houses to be in good school districts, overextending their finances and driving up housing prices. This was the same type of brilliant scholarship that, back in the 1970s, saw impressive academic articles saying mother’s milk is good for children or the sun rises in the east.
  • Due to shoddy research methods, drastically overstated the connection between personal bankruptcies and medical costs.
  • Despite her anti-rich rhetoric is a mult-millionaire, having made much of her money teaching minimal classes, flipping foreclosed houses, and giving expensive advice to corporations.
  • Took the lead on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, an agency intended to govern the entire American financial sector without any oversight from any of the constitutional branches of government.
  • Became both famous and infamous for assuring Americans that anyone who made it did so only because of socialist government programs and had a duty to yield to government demands that it return a chunk of that money to the system.
  • Introduced an unsuccessful bill that would have forced banks to give students the same lending rate that the banks paid to the federal government for use of those funds.
  • On a lot of committees, makes a lot of speeches, raised a lot of money, but other than the CFPB, has not accomplished anything while in government.

Bernie Sanders’s quickie bio:

  • Graduated from the University of Chicago with a BA in poly sci.
  • Went straight to communism while in college and never left it.
  • Had short stints in the late 1960s as a Head Start teacher, psychiatric aide, and carpenter.
  • Entered politics in the early 1970s, trying to become a Vermont governor or U.S. Senator on behalf of the “Liberty Union” anti-war party.
  • Honeymooned in Moscow at the height of the Cold War.
  • Became mayor of Burlington, Vermont, from 1981 to 1989.
  • Served in the House of Representatives from 1991 to 2007.
  • Served in the Senate from 2007 through to the present.
  • Is a millionaire, thanks to book sales, and he and his wife own three houses.

What Bernie has accomplished or failed to accomplish:

  • Used his platform as the mayor of a small town in Vermont to opine on U.S. foreign policy in Latin America.
  • Hosted a Noam Chomskey speech in Burlington.
  • Reduced cable TV rates.
  • Improved Burlington’s Lake Champlain waterfront.
  • Collaborated with 30 Vermont musicians to record a folk album.
  • In 1987, U.S. News and World Report ranked him as one of America’s best mayors. The potted Wikipedia bio makes it unclear if Burlington did well because of or in spite of Bernie.
  • Opposed the Brady Bill and, indeed, was generally against gun control until he recently became for gun control.
  • Voted for the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act that removed so many men from America’s black communities.
  • Opposed the Patriot Act.
  • Voted against both the first and second Iraq Wars.
  • The he sponsored two successful bills while in the House: one to designate a postal building and other for a veterans’ compensation cost adjustment.
  • He is hostile to Israel, although many of his relatives died in the Holocaust, and just accepted the endorsement of Linda Sarsour, an open anti-Semite.

Kamala Harris’s quickie bio:

  • Born into an upper-middle-class family. Like Barack Obama, while she is partially black, hers is not the American black experience.
  • Lived and was educated in Quebec during her middle and high school years.
  • Attended Howard University, receiving a BA in poly sci and econ.
  • Got her J.D. from UC Hastings in San Francisco.
  • Worked as a deputy DA in Alameda County, specializing in child abuse cases.
  • Started in politics when her boyfriend Willie Brown, then the California Assembly Speaker, threw two political sinecures her way, netting her large salaries for little work. I like to say that she’s the politician who slept her way to the middle.
  • Became an Assistant DA in San Francisco, quitting eight months later because of personnel problems in the office.
  • Returned to City Hall, this time running the Family and Children’s Services Division in the City Attorney’s Office.
  • Successfully ran for City Attorney, although she was found guilty of violating an agreed-upon campaign spending limit of $211,000 by nearly $100,000. Kamala eventually spent almost $625,000 to win the election.
  • Re-elected when she ran unopposed.
  • Elected as California State Attorney General.
  • Elected as a US Senator.

What Kamala has accomplished or failed to accomplish:

  • Refused to seek the death penalty when a police officer was shot and killed in the line of duty, infuriating the entire police department and (of all people) Dianne Feinstein.
  • During her tenure as San Francisco’s District Attorney, the felony conviction rate rose significantly. She’s trying now to run from this record, especially because, as Tulsi Gabbard pointed out, her office engaged in criminally unconstitutional prosecutorial conduct.
  • Worked to prevent hate crimes against LGBT children in San Francisco and supported same-sex marriage.
  • Successfully introduced a Homeowners’ Bill of Rights in the California legislature.
  • At Loretta Lynch’s urging, brought criminal charges against pro-Life activists who used secret recordings exposing the fact that Planned Parenthood outlets were illegally selling fetal body parts.
  • Argued against changes to address overcrowding in the California prison system, overcrowding so severe that the US Supreme Court called it cruel and unusual punishment. Was accused of using prisoners as slave labor, especially for fighting wildfires.
  • Opposed sex reassignment surgery for a mentally ill man in prison, a sensible stand but one that has offended many in the LGBT community.
  • Since entering the Senate, she’s opposed Trump and run for president.

Cory Booker’s quickie bio:

  • Born into an upper-middle-class Newark family.
  • Attended Stanford, receiving a BA in poly sci and an MA in sociology.
  • Awarded a Rhodes Scholar and studied U.S. history at Oxford, earning an honors degree.
  • Obtained a J.D. from Yale Law.
  • After graduating from law school, worked for less than a year in two left-leaning pro bona legal organizations.
  • Within a year of graduating from law school, won a seat on the Municipal Council of Newark.
  • After four years on the Municipal Council ran for mayor of Newark.
  • Four years later, in 2010, ran for reelection as mayor of Newark and won again.
  • Cut short his mayoral career to enter the U.S. Senate, via a victory he won in a special election in 2013, after incumbent Frank Lautenberg died unexpectedly.
  • In 2014, won the senatorial seat in the regular election.
  • Is now running for president.

What Booker has accomplished or failed to accomplish:

  • Crime dropped during his first two years as mayor, but rose significantly thereafter.
  • Trimmed the city budget a little.
  • Talked Mark Zuckerberg into giving $100 million to the Newark public school system. A Leftist authoried book, The Prize: Who’s in Charge of America’s Schools?, revealed that graft and waste ate through the money with minimal benefits for students.
  • During his second term, Booker helped get a woman out of a burning house.
  • During his mayoralty, the Newark Watershed, which supplies water to municipalities in northern New Jersey was found to be corrupt.
  • In Congress, co-sponsored the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, which would primarily have benefited the LGBT community.
  • Co-sponsored Bob Menendez’s failed Nuclear Weapon Free Iran Act of 2013, calling for tougher sanctions against Iran.
  • Co-sponsored the Respect for Marriage Act, a failed initiative to recognize same-sex marriage.
  • Pledged to oppose all of Donald Trump’s nominees for administrative jobs, without regard to their qualifications, just because…
  • Co-sponsored an unsuccessful act making it a federal crime to boycott Israel if protesting actions by the Israeli government.
  • Sought to legalize marijuana at the federal level.
  • Called himself Spartacus for publishing documents that had already been produced to the public.

Pete Buttigieg’s quickie bio:

  • Gay and married.
  • Considers himself a scholar of woke Christianity.
  • Attended Harvard and received a BA in history and literature.
  • Got a Rhodes scholarship, which led him to a First Class BA degree from Oxford in philosophy, politics, and economics.
  • Worked as an intern at a local TV news station.
  • Before heading to Oxford, worked as a “conference director” for former Defense Secretary William Cohen.
  • Became an ensign in the U.S. Navy Reserve. Spent 7 months in Afghanistan as a naval intelligence officer, although a lot of his work was driving people around (albeit in neighborhoods as dangerous as inner city South Bend or Chicago).
  • Became mayor of South Bend, Indiana, and is now in his second term.

What Buttigieg has accomplished or failed to accomplish:

  • Demoted South Bend’s first black police chief and then reappointed him. These and other personnel decision cost the already cash-strapped city $800,000 in out-of-court settlements.
  • Successfully repaired or demolished 1,000 blighted properties in South Bend.
  • Led the initiative to fix traffic in South Bend.
  • Led the initiative to have a nightly laser light display in South Bend.
  • South Bend, incidentally, is one of America’s most dangerous cities, a situation that has not improved on Mayor Pete’s beat.

Julián Castro’s quickie bio:

  • Son of one of the founders of La Raza.
  • Attended Stanford, receiving a BA in poly sci and communications. Admitted that he got in due to affirmative action.
  • Attended Harvard Law.
  • Worked for a major Democrat donor law firm after graduation.
  • Within one year of graduation from law school, elected to the San Antonio City Council.
  • Ran for mayor four years later and, when he lost, set up his own law practice.
  • Ran for mayor again four years later and won the election.
  • During the Obama administration, became Secretary of Housing and Urban Development.

What Castro has accomplished or failed to accomplish:

  • Created SA 2020, “a community-wide visioning effort.”.
  • Expanded San Antonio pre-K education through a sales tax increase.
  • Delivered a keynote address at the DNC convention in 2012.
  • In a memo he wrote when he left HUD, he identified his own accomplishments as stabilizing the housing market, rebuilding communities hurt by national disasters (helped with $1 billion in taxpayer funds), and helping to further lead safety protections in government housing.

Amy Klobuchar’s quickie bio:

  • Received a BA in poly sci from Yale.
  • Attended the University of Chicago Law School, and was on the Law Review.
  • Worked as a corporate lawyer in Minnesota for thirteen years before getting elected as Hennepin County attorney, a position to which she was reelected.
  • Elected to the U.S. Senate in 2006 and reelected in 2012 and 2018.

What Klobuchar has accomplished or failed to accomplish:

  • According to a 2016 “Medill on the Hill” article, in the previous two years, Klobuchar passed the most bills that became laws. None of them seem to have been important laws. Without reading more, I get the feeling that she attached herself to easy issues.
  • Fully supported Russiagate.
  • Was exposed as the boss from Hell who abused and humiliated her employees, resulting in the highest staff turnover in Congress.

Robert Francis O’Rourke’s quickie bio:

  • Comes from a rich, connected El Paso, Texas, family.
  • As a teenager, belonged to a computer hacker group called Cult of the Dead Cow, which resulted in his engaging in felonious conduct. He also wrote creepy things for the group about sex and violence.
  • Attended Columbia University, earning a BA in English lit.
  • Was arrested when he was 23 for trespassing at a University of Texas El Paso physical plant.
  • Was arrested when he was 26 for drunk driving. The arrest occurred after he hit another car and then tried to flee the scene.
  • Tried to be a rock musician.
  • Worked as a live-in caretaker and art mover, before his uncle hired him to work as the uncle’s internet service provider.
  • Worked as a proofreader.
  • Worked at his mom’s furniture store while living in an apartment building his father owned.
  • Opened an internet services and software company using a loan his father took out for him. His mom was his first client.
  • In 2005, married a billionaire’s daughter.
  • Served on the El Paso City Council.
  • In 2012, was elected to the House of Representatives, and was re-elected in 2014 and 2016.
  • Resigned from the House to run unsuccessfully for the Texas Senate in 2018.

What O’Rourke has accomplished or failed to accomplish:

  • Supported redevelopment of a depressed area in El Paso, which never came to fruition.
  • Opposed the War on Drugs while on the El Paso Council.
  • Co-sponsored a bill to improve training for customs officers and agents and require special reports on use of force.
  • Helped pass a bill that, in relevant part, created public-private partnerships to lower wait times at ports of entry on America’s southern border.
  • Refused to support funding for Israel’s Iron Dome defense system, saying in part that the U.S. has just been too good to Israel, which was actually bad for Israel.

Andrew Yang’s quickie bio:

  • Born to highly educated, well-paid immigrants from Taiwan.
  • Got bullied at public schools (who hasn’t?).
  • Attended Phillips Exeter Academy, one of the most elite boarding schools in America.
  • Attended Brown University, graduating with a BA in economics.
  • Attended Columbia Law School.
  • Worked as a lawyer and a test prep instructor.

What Yang has accomplished or failed to accomplish:

  • Created a start-up aimed at funding entrepreneurs by trolling college graduates for future stars.

Tulsi Gabbard’s quickie bio:

  • Born in American Samoa and raised in Hawaii.
  • Home schooled through high school, except for two years at a Christian Missionary Academy.
  • Graduated from Hawaii Pacific University with a BS in Business Administration.
  • In 2003, while already a member of Hawaii’s legislature, joined the Hawaii Army National Guard.
  • Spent one year serving in Iraq as a specialist for a medical company.
  • Attended Officer Candidate School, graduating as her classes “distinguished honors graduate,” becoming a second lieutenant and assigned to be a military police officer.
  • Served in Kuwait for a year helping to train the Kuwait National Guard, receiving an honor for her outstanding work. Currently holds that rank of major.
  • Elected to the Hawaii House of Representatives.
  • Elected to the Honolulu City Council.
  • Elected to the House of Representatives, in which she still serves.

What Gabbard has accomplished or failed to accomplish:

  • As noted above, served in the military.
  • While on the Honolulu city council, worked to help loosen parking restrictions for food truck vendors and authored and passed a bill allowing city workers to seize personal belongings stored on city property (after 24 hours’ notice).
  • While in the House, introduced and got passed a law improving airport security screenings for severely wounded veterans.
  • Introduced and got passed a law to give the Congressional Medal of Honor to Filipino and Filipino-American veterans of WWII.
  • Introduced and got passed a law to help prevent child abuse and neglect on military bases.
  • Introduced a bill to return American elections to paper ballots to prevent fraud and foreign election interference.

Marianne Williamson’s quickie bio:

  • Upper middle class Jewish girl from Houston.
  • Studied theater and philosophy at Pomona College for two years before dropping out of college, burned out by anti-war protests during the Vietnam era and by general existential despair.
  • Read Helen Schucman’s A Course in Miracles, a book all about spiritual transformation. Schucman claimed that Jesus’s voice dictated the book to her.
  • Inspired by Schucman’s book, Williamson became a professional New Age guru, teaching classes, writing books, and ministering to New Age congregations.

What Williamson has accomplished or failed to accomplish:

  • Oprah likes her.
  • Net worth of is estimated at being between $957,000 and $4.5 million.
  • Created Project Angel Food to support people with HIV/AIDS in Los Angeles.
  • Co-founded the non-profit Global Renaissance Alliance, set up to create a network of “citizen salons” around the world that would pray for national growth, peace, and Leftist causes.

Pre-White House Trump bio (gleaned from a very hostile Wikipedia article):

  • Born into an affluent family to a real-estate developer father.
  • Graduated from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania with a B.S. in economics.
  • Avoided serving in the Vietnam War, whether by legitimate or illegitimate means.
  • Avoids all alcohol and recreational drugs, loves fast food, and need only 3-4 hours of sleep per night.
  • After working for his family business, Trump launched his Manhattan real estate business with a $70,000,000 loan that his father and the Hyatt hotel chain jointly guaranteed.
  • Was the first major developer to hire a woman to manage a large commercial development project.
  • Developed vast, high-end commercial properties across Manhattan which, along with his flamboyant personality, made him one of the world’s most famous people.
  • Began developing properties all over the Eastern Seaboard and around the world.
  • Famous for being aggressive about land grabs, pushing regulations, and bullying people.
  • Famous for dumping bad projects, while usually managing to retain some profit as well as his name on the project.
  • Strategically used bankruptcy to regroup and recoup his wealth.
  • Respected for bringing projects in on time and, often, under budget.
  • Wrote (or co-wrote or didn’t write) a best-selling book called Trump : The Art of the Deal.
  • Furthered his brand working with World Wrestling Entertainment.
  • With The Apprentice, created and worked on the most popular reality show in television history.
  • Without ever having run for office before, won the presidency on his first try, against a crowded, experienced field, against the woman whom the establishment had anointed as the next president, and despite an attempted Obama / Deep State coup to destroy his candidacy or wipe out his presidency.

A partial list of his accomplishments in office, drawn from White House’s own web page:

• Almost 4 million jobs created since election.
• More Americans are now employed than ever recorded before in our history.
• We have created more than 400,000 manufacturing jobs since my election.
• Manufacturing jobs growing at the fastest rate in more than THREE DECADES.
• Economic growth last quarter hit 4.2 percent.
• New unemployment claims recently hit a 49-year low.
• Median household income has hit highest level ever recorded.
• African-American unemployment has recently achieved the lowest rate ever recorded.
• Hispanic-American unemployment is at the lowest rate ever recorded.
• Asian-American unemployment recently achieved the lowest rate ever recorded.
• Women’s unemployment recently reached the lowest rate in 65 years.
• Youth unemployment has recently hit the lowest rate in nearly half a century.
• Lowest unemployment rate ever recorded for Americans without a high school diploma.
• Under my Administration, veterans’ unemployment recently reached its lowest rate in nearly 20 years.
• Almost 3.9 million Americans have been lifted off food stamps since the election.

[snip]

• Signed the biggest package of tax cuts and reforms in history. After tax cuts, over $300 billion poured back in to the U.S. in the first quarter alone.

[snip]

• Opened ANWR and approved Keystone XL and Dakota Access Pipelines.
• Record number of regulations eliminated.
• Enacted regulatory relief for community banks and credit unions.
• Obamacare individual mandate penalty GONE.

[snip]

• Last month, the FDA approved more affordable generic drugs than ever before in history. And thanks to our efforts, many drug companies are freezing or reversing planned price increases.
• We reformed the Medicare program to stop hospitals from overcharging low-income seniors on their drugs—saving seniors hundreds of millions of dollars this year alone.
• Signed Right-To-Try legislation.
• Secured $6 billion in NEW funding to fight the opioid epidemic.

[snip]

• Increased our coal exports by 60 percent; U.S. oil production recently reached all-time high.
• United States is a net natural gas exporter for the first time since 1957.
• Withdrew the United States from the job-killing Paris Climate Accord.
• Cancelled the illegal, anti-coal, so-called Clean Power Plan.
• Secured record $700 billion in military funding; $716 billion next year.
• NATO allies are spending $69 billion more on defense since 2016.

[snip]

• Confirmed more circuit court judges than any other new administration.
• Confirmed Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch and nominated Judge Brett Kavanaugh.
• Withdrew from the horrible, one-sided Iran Deal.
• Moved U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem.
• Protecting Americans from terrorists with the Travel Ban, upheld by Supreme Court.

[snip]

• Concluded a historic U.S.-Mexico Trade Deal to replace NAFTA. And negotiations with Canada are underway as we speak.
• Reached a breakthrough agreement with the E.U. to increase U.S. exports.
• Imposed tariffs on foreign steel and aluminum to protect our national security.
• Imposed tariffs on China in response to China’s forced technology transfer, intellectual property theft, and their chronically abusive trade practices.
• Net exports are on track to increase by $59 billion this year.
• Improved vetting and screening for refugees, and switched focus to overseas resettlement.
• We have begun BUILDING THE WALL. Republicans want STRONG BORDERS and NO CRIME. Democrats want OPEN BORDERS which equals MASSIVE CRIME.

The post No. 16 Bookworm Podcast: With Trump, stop listening and start paying attention appeared first on Watcher of Weasels.

No. 8 Bookworm Room Podcast: Leftists and NeverTrumpers are caught in a political riptide

A political riptide is carrying Leftists and NeverTrumpers further from reality on myriad important issues — and Trump is holding the only life preserver.

(If you prefer listening to reading, you can find the podcast at the bottom of this post, at LibSyn, or at Apple Podcasts. And if you like the podcast or the post, please share.)

How much do you know about riptides? For those who don’t know anything about them, they’re currents that run in narrow channels perpendicularly away from the shoreline. There you are, just swimming along happily in the ocean when you realize that you’ve been pushed dangerously far from the shore. If you panic, you start pushing back against the riptide, exhausting yourself.

The way to save yourself — assuming that’s still possible — is to swim perpendicularly to the riptide. That is, instead of swimming towards the shore, which is an impossibility if the riptide is strong, you have to swim parallel to the shore, breaking out of the rip tide. Only then, if you have strength left, can you head back to the land. But as I said, the real danger is the fact that riptides can be subtle things that gently, relentlessly, and imperceptibly leave you in tremendous danger.

The Democrats and NeverTrumpers in my world are finding themselves caught in the riptide of Leftist politics. I need a little personal history here to explain.

I grew up in a completely Democrat world. My family, most of their friends, my educational institutions, the communities in which I lived as a lawyer and a parent — all Democrat. I ought to have drifted along in those waters endlessly, without ever realizing that they were getting dangerously polluted.

What saved me was that I knew Israel. I knew Israel because my parents lived there during the British mandate period, during the Israeli War of Independence (in which they participated), and after Israel gained her independence. I knew it because I’d visited Israel. And I knew it because I knew lots and lots of Sabras  — that is, native Israelis, whether blood relatives or friends. Moreover, growing up in a less heated time, I also knew lots of Arabs, both Christian and Muslim, all of whom were lovely people and good friends. Add to that the fact that I’m a history major and had a very solid foundation in both Western and Middle Eastern history, going back to the Biblical era, and it was the one subject about which you could not lie to me.

What this knowledge meant was that I realized fairly early on, back in the 1990s, that the American Democrat party was embracing one of Marxism’s core principles — anti-Semitism. I was too ignorant in then to know that anti-Semitism has its roots in Marxism, but I sure understood that it was slowly oozing out of all the “best,” most intellectual media that informed my world back in the day: NPR, The New Yorker, The New Republic, The New York Times, etc. Significantly, these were the main news sources for all the Yuppies, both Jewish and non-Jewish, who made up my world. Sadly, these outlets (maybe not The New Republic), are still what these old friends consume.

Back in the day, those media outlets could tell me anything they wanted about the Clintons, the Gores, the Bushes, Clarence Thomas, the banks, the federal reserve, foreign policy, etc., and I’d believe it. Well, almost anything. Having lived in England during the early 1980s and seen the miserable quality of medical care people received under the National Health Service, Hillary’s attempt at socializing American medicine didn’t impress me. Still, I was young and would live forever, so I simply didn’t care that much that the Clintons wanted to nationalize American healthcare.

The one thing, though, that the “high-end, intellectual” media had to be truthful about if it wanted to keep me was Israel — and increasingly, it was not being truthful. The anti-Israel animus permeating my media outlets was becoming too much to bear. One day, I realized that I was caught in a riptide of lies and was floating further and further from facts — not Bidenesque-truthiness unrelated to facts — but actual facts.

At that moment, I stopped dead, sighted the shore, and started swimming parallel to it — and perpendicular to that lying riptide. This meant discovering alternative outlets such as *gasp* Fox News and National Review, as well as conservative blogs. Even more than that, it meant using YouTube and other outlets (when they were still honest) to find original content without having it first run through any media, Left or Right.

When I figured out what was going on — that the modern Democrat party was completely unrelated to the Kennedy-style Democrat Party in which I was raised and was becoming a harder Left party with a decidedly anti-Semitic edge — I tried to sound the warning to friends and family. “Riptide!” I hollered. They laughed at me or found me paranoid and irritating. “The water’s fine. Times change. You have to change with them. There’s no danger here.”

But there was danger, of course. There was the danger that honoring different races and cultures in America, a laudable thing, would be used to fuel an identity politics that turns Americans against each other and invites everyone to join the race to the bottom of victimhood.

There was the danger that acknowledging same sex relationships, which are private and should be none of my business, would be used as a wedge to destroy the nuclear family, begin an attack on the First Amendment’s protection of freedom of worship, and eventually deny biological reality altogether.

There was the danger that the Democrats’ long-standing love affair with Europe’s alleged “sophistication” and disdain for America’s small town naivete would be used to attack American sovereignty in favor of UN guidance for American policies.

And there was the danger that America’s borders, which are what most fundamentally define a country, would eventually be seen as a hindrance to getting a very specific kind of voter: That is, voters who (sadly) have long been accustomed to Marxist-style socialism and corruption and will vote for it provided that the politicians promise them something for nothing. This is not a racist comment, it’s a comment about culture and, more specifically, the culture in Latin America. We could say the same about the European culture, but they’re not yet streaming over our border. With this newly imported citizenry, freedom becomes less and less of an option.

And all along there was that riptide. It was so subtle. For those people who wanted to be “good,” as defined in the media I once listened to and read, standing against gay marriage wasn’t showing concern for traditional institutions or for religious liberty, but was “hate.” Believing in American sovereignty through strong borders and functioning immigration laws wasn’t a common sense way to maintain a nation’s integrity but was racism. Being suspicious of countries that exported murderous terrorists wasn’t a matter of national security, it was “Islamophobia.”

And then, as people got further from the shore of common sense, the riptide grew stronger. Suddenly, it’s hate to believe that there a sex differences. It’s racism to believe in any borders, let alone strong ones, because children will cry — or at least, Latin American children will cry. And it’s Islamophobia to point out that two Muslim congresswomen routinely malign America and seem more concerned with countries overseas than with the one they purportedly represent. The riptide keeps pushing people further and further away from any ability at all to swim back to shore.

Some of the saddest people caught in the riptide are the NeverTrumpers. They’re the ones whose hatred for Trump’s personal style (a style I’ve learned to enjoy tremendously) has not only seen them pushed seaward by the riptide, but has actually seen them embrace the tide and swim away from the shore as hard and fast as they can. They’d rather drown than acknowledge that, right now, the only one holding a life preserver is Donald Trump.

I see this, of course, in well known NeverTrumpers such as Jennifer Rubin, Max Boot, or David French. I also see it closer to home with people on my Facebook page. One man whom I’ve known for thirty years morphed from a conservative born-again Christian to a flagrant Leftist based solely upon his Trump hatred.

Today, he’s incensed that, when the Trump family travels, it likes to stay at Trump properties — which means that the Secret Service stays at Trump properties too. The horror! The corruption! Some small percentage of the money paid for those hotel stays goes into Trump’s bank account. As an example, the Politico article my friend cites says that in August 2017, of the $16,600 the Secret Service spent on a trip, $5,700 went to a Trump hotel. That’s not $5,700 to Trump — that’s to the hotel, which was charging for rooms and service. Trump was therefore probably enriched to the tune of $100 or $200. I’m shocked!

My friend also accepts uncritically any headline that savages Trump or his administration. The latest outrage is the claim that Ken Cuccinelli, an immigration official, is rewriting the verses on the Statue of Liberty to say that they mean that America will only welcome white European immigrants. Were my friend less in thrall to TDS, and a more discriminating consumer of information, he would actually read what happened. For example, Matt Walsh, of the Daily Wire, has a good article explaining the media’s gross and grotesque dishonesty.

It began when the Trump administration made the logical announcement that Americans shouldn’t be paying for welfare for new immigrants. When my parents came to this country in the 1950s, they had to promise and prove that they wouldn’t become a “public charge,” a concept going back to 1882 — and they never did. Recent administrations have ignored this law, but Trump seeks to give it meaning again.

So what does the media do? NPR asks Cuccinelli how he can betray the promise on the Statue of Liberty?

Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!

Were I Cuccinelli, I would have pointed out that this is poetry on a giant sculpture, not legislation, and it therefore has no affect whatsoever on public policy. He, however, said that you can be “tired” and “poor,” and still not be a public charge. The media immediately came out with the headlines that horrified my friend. Walsh quotes a few:

“Cuccinelli rewrites Statue of Liberty poem to make case for limiting immigration”

“Trump immigration official offers rewrite for Statue of Liberty poem

“The Trump Team rewrites the Statue of Liberty”

As Walsh explains:

These are all absurd lies. Cuccinelli never rewrote, or suggested that we rewrite, or even said anything about rewriting the poem on the Statue of Liberty. He also isn’t the one who brought up the poem. He was asked a question about whether the policy is consistent with the poem — which, again, doesn’t matter anyway — and he provided an answer. But this is a trick that the media loves to pull. They ask you a weird and irrelevant question, you answer it, and they report your answer as if you were the one who brought up the subject. A petty and disingenuous little ploy. And they weren’t done with Cuccinelli just yet.

How true that the media was not done with Cuccinelli. The next strike occurred when he tried to explain that the language “wretched refuse” was a reference to Europe’s class system, which treated its lower class like . . . well, refuse. Back to Walsh:

[H]e was giving necessary context to the poem in an effort to explain who the “wretched refuse” were, and why that language was used. His point, obviously, was that accepting “wretched refuse” doesn’t mean accepting non-contributors who only want to exploit America’s welfare system. Rather, it means accepting contributing and self-sufficient people from lower classes in society. But, again, Cuccinelli isn’t the one harping on the damn poem. It is the media that has decided to focus this entire conversation around the words on a plaque affixed to the Statue of Liberty.

To rational people free of the riptide, Cuccinelli’s point was obvious. But to the media, which is neither rational nor honest, Cuccinelli proved that the entire Trump administration is permeated with white supremacist thinking. Once again, Walsh collects some headlines:

Statue of Liberty poem was only supposed to welcome white immigrants ‘from Europe,’ Cuccinelli says

“Immigration official Ken Cuccinelli: Statue of Liberty poem refers to immigrants from Europe”

“Ken Cuccinelli: Statue Of Liberty Poem About ‘People Coming From Europe’”

The lack of logic behind the first and second batch of headlines is striking. In the first round, Cuccinelli is lambasted for rejecting the Statute of Liberty’s promise. In the second round, he’s lambasted for imposing a white supremacist worldview on the Statute of Liberty. How he can simultaneously reject it entirely and then embrace it as a white supremacist doctrine is never explained.

In a sane world, we’d see Leftists and NeverTrumpers look at the receding shore and thinking, “Wow, we might be in deeper waters than we realize.” In a heated partisan world driven by an increasingly dishonest (and possibly) insane media, these same Leftists and NeverTrumpers are either drifting along mindlessly or worse, swimming ever harder away from the shore.

This is a very dangerous time in American politics. My hope is that, as elections near and ordinary people start paying attention, they look at these crazed political die-hards and think “Whoa! Those people are drowning. I’m not going to let them take me down too.”

With that last thought in mind, I’ll end this on a happy note. I follow on Facebook a Jewish man who is, as I once was, a lifelong Democrat. He is also, as I always have been, a strong Israel supporter. I’ve been watching him struggle for months with the fact that one of the defining characteristics of the new Democrat party is its hostility to Israel. Just today, he put up a post about the fact that Tulsi Gabbard is now co-sponsoring Ilhan Omar’s pro-BDS bill. The comment he included? “And you’re out!” I suspect that he’s figuring out that he’s caught in a riptide and that, if you love Israel, the only free, pluralist democracy in the Middle East, there is no room for you any more in today’s Democrat party.

My hope is that, with every passing day, as the political crazies swim and float closer to the drowning point, other people grab for the life preservers.

Photo credit: Travel Photography from PhotoEverywhere

The post No. 8 Bookworm Room Podcast: Leftists and NeverTrumpers are caught in a political riptide appeared first on Watcher of Weasels.

No. 3 Bookworm Room Podcast — Michelle Obama, Tulsi Gabbard, and cat ladies

It speaks to our vapid celebrity culture that Michael Moore believes that talentless, accomplishment-free Michelle Obama is the Democrat Party’s only hope.

I am having fun figuring out more efficient ways to do the podcast. My first podcast, in addition to the days of trying to figure out how to record, edit, and publish it, took five hours to create; podcast No. 3, the one that is the subject of this post, took only 2 hours. I’m not saying that it’s a better interface from the audience viewpoint but it was definitely a better experience on my end. Here are the ideas I developed in the podcast. Alternatively, just listen to the podcast itself, which you’ll find at the bottom of this post:

Help us, Michelle Obama; you’re our only hope.

My starting point in the podcast is a Michael Moore appearance on MSNBC (h/t American Thinker) in which Moore said, with perfect, almost tearful, sincerity that Michelle Obama is the only one who can win the election for the Democrats and save America from more Donald Trump. His desperation is both charming (from a conservative point of view) and pathetic (from any point of view):

What fascinated me was the fact that Moore doesn’t make any claim that Michelle has the skills to be president. He simply argues that she can debate Trump (I think he’s wrong) and that people like Michelle Obama. In other words, if this election were held in high school, where popularity is everything, Michelle would win.

It’s no surprise that Moore doesn’t point to any of Michelle’s actual accomplishments, because she has none. She spent some time as a junior associate in a law firm, then went to work in Chicago city politics and then, as her husband’s star began to rise, got a make work position at the University of Chicago. Apparently she broke some fundraising records there, but only the naive would think this had to do with her charm and skills rather than scoring points thanks to her husband’s political trajectory. Once she was First Lady, her signature accomplishment was making school children hate lunch.

Michelle Obama is nothing more than a media product: From the very first day, the media has been singing her praises. She’s the new Jackie O, she has the most gorgeous arms, she’s incredibly stylish, she’s brilliant, she’s hip, she’s charming. Peel away the slavish praise and there’s no visible there there. Indeed, the only way in which Michelle Obama compares to Jackie O isn’t about style; it’s about the fact that, like Jackie, Michelle married well and then, after leaving the White House, became fabulously rich and started leading a louche Rivieria lifestyle, something I find decidedly at odds with American values.

Once upon a time, we elected presidents based upon their accomplishments, whether in or out of politics, before they got to the White House. Washington led the Continental Army to victory. Adams, Jefferson, and Madison were towering intellectual giants of the Revolution. Jackson was a war hero. Lincoln was a successful lawyer and effective politician. Grant won the Civil War. Teddy Roosevelt won everything. Wilson (a vile man) was president of Princeton and governor of Virginia, Truman was a successful WWI commander and had a long political history (one that was fairly clean despite the dirty Democrat Midwestern political machine), Eisenhower helped win WWII, Kennedy served with honor in WWII, Reagan had a long career in politics and served as California governor. I could go on but I hope I’ve made my point. Even George Dubya, while a disappointing president, wasn’t elected just because he was H.W.’s son. He also served successfully as Texas’s governor and was an experienced businessman.

And then there was Obama, whose only accomplishment was . . . being Obama. When he took the White House, he’d never achieved anything significant for anybody but himself by constantly attaining higher and higher positions in which he did nothing of note. That didn’t matter, though, because Obama — handsome, Ivy League educated, well-spoken, and hard Left — was part of America’s new aristocracy.

The old aristocracy, the British kind that we broke with in 1776, ignored accomplishments and looked to lineage. For example, that’s how Charles II finally won the throne, long after his father was executed and Cromwell died. He got it because he was born to it. As a ruler, though, he left much to be desired, with a courtier writing of him:

Here lies our sovereign Lord the King,
Whose word no man relies on.
Who’s never said a foolish thing
Nor ever done a wise one.

The list of foolish monarchs, men and women who got power because they were part of the ruling class, is legion. Sometimes they surprised people by ruling well and wisely; more often than not, people were lucky if these “in crowd” rulers at least had the wisdom to choose good advisers.

America, as I noted, has now developed its own aristocracy, one made up, not of blood, but of the “proper” beliefs and connections. I learned this in 2008 when a Leftist friend told me that it was irrelevant that Sarah Palin, who was running for Vice President, was a much more accomplished executive and politician than Barack Obama, who sought the Oval Office. The problem with Palin, he said, was that “she’s not one of us.” She’s not a graduate of a prestigious college (preferably with a graduate degree), she’s not driving a hybrid car and, most importantly, she doesn’t hew to the Democrat party platform. Not only do “we” dislike her politics, she is not worthy of political victory.

Same goes for Trump, one of the most successful men ever to sit in the Oval office. All that kinds for Moore and his ilk, though, is that Michelle is a new American aristocrat. George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, James Madison, and all the other Founders, the ones who fought for a true republic, must be weeping in their graves.

Don’t get fooled: Tulsi Gabbard is just another Leftist

Tulsi Gabbard is a beautiful woman. She’s easily the most beautiful person ever to run for president. She’s also proven that she has the killer instinct to strike like a rattlesnake (witness her recent attack on Kamala Harris). Moreover, her military record and hostility to Islamism make her appealing to centrists. Unlike the other vet on the Democrat stage — Buttigieg — she lacks the poorly disguised existential anger that hides behind his cute little chipmunk face. Buttigieg knows that his Christian God doesn’t approve of his lifestyle and is busy trying to rewrite his faith to suit his desires. It’s not a good look.

Don’t be fooled, though. Just as Williamson, behind the New Age gibble-gabble, is a generic Leftist, the same is true of Tulsi. Just look at her official website.

As is true for all the top tier Democrat candidates, Tulsi supports socialized medicine, although she pays lip service to keeping some sort of private insurance around (probably for the rich people). She voted for the Medicare for All Act of 2019 and mounts the usual attacks on insurance and pharmaceutical companies:

No one should be forced to choose between putting food on the table and paying for life-saving medication. But that’s exactly what’s happening to millions of Americans as a result of Big Pharma’s chokehold on Medicare. They’ve managed to buy access into Congress, barring the government from negotiating cheaper prices for consumers, so they can continue to price-gouge those trying to buy life-saving medication and rake in profits at the expense of the American people.

It doesn’t seem to occur to any of these Lefties that bringing companies into the government fold is fascism. If you’re scared of corporations now, just wait until they’re in bed with government. Then they’re really scary and there’s no free market to protect you.

Also like her fellow Dems, Tulsi wants to socialize American higher education by forcing American taxpayers to fund community and two year colleges and to pay for “middle-class students” at public universities. This is free money for Leftists.

More scarily, publicly funded higher education is a way to complete the indoctrination of all American young people. Colleges are Ground Zero for every crazy idea floating around now: socialism, identity politics, virtue signaling, and the general insanity that we see about race, gender, feminism, etc. Colleges are why corporations are virtue signaling themselves into bankruptcy (see Gillette’s ill-advised ads) — college grads with useless Queer, or Gender, or Race degrees eventually leave Starbucks for mid-level management jobs and destroy companies from within. They also infest the social media companies that are trying to destroy American political discourse.

Tulsi is an abortion extremist. She doesn’t say so explicitly, but she supported 2013’s “Women’s Health Protection Act” which would have removed all state mandated limits on abortion. This means abortion up to and even after the moment of birth.

When it comes to so-called “climate change,” Tulsi checks the “generic Dem” box there as well:

Here are a couple of other Tulsi climate sound bytes, all of which are aimed at returning us to a pre-modern era of green landscapes and starving people:

As president, I’ll tackle climate change by ending subsidies to big fossil fuel and agribusiness corporations, ban offshore drilling, harness innovation to create jobs in renewable energy, provide better opportunities for our farmers, and ensure every American has clean air and water.

And

We need to invest in 100% renewable and safe energy sources like wind, solar, and geothermal. I also support a ban on fracking, ending the $26 billion/year in fossil fuel subsidies, as well as all subsidies or waivers to the nuclear power industry, which should itself be completely responsible for paying for its own insurance and paying the long term cost for safe storage of nuclear waste over centuries. I will also work to provide other incentives for a renewable energy economy.

On race, Tulsi voted yes on the “Commission to Study and Develop Reparation Proposals.” No, it’s not voting for reparations, but it’s getting the ducks in a row to vote for reparations. My parents came to this country in 1954 and struggled, always. Most of my classmates growing up were the children of people who had escaped Communist China or Communist Vietnam with the clothes on their backs. Why any of them, who had nothing to do with slavery, should pay reparations to people who were not themselves slaves is beyond me.

On immigration, Tulsi talks about border security, but it’s pretty clear that she wants to fast-track citizenship (that is, voting status) to those who cheated:

The only area in which Tulsi sounds actually conservative is that her passionate anti-War stance is combined with a desire to strike back at radical Islamism. In that way, she’s somewhat like Trump insofar as she and Trump have broken with both the Wilson doctrine and the Obama-led peace movement. I’ve written about Trump’s stance at some length here, so I won’t repeat it now. I’ll just say that, as between Leftist Tulsi and promising-keeping, conservative Trump, I’ll keep Trump for foreign policy, thank you very much.

The Rule of Law applies even to cat ladies

The last thing I want to blog about is a bit random. You may have seen the story from Garfield Heights, Ohio, about a 79 year old woman being sent to jail for 10 days for feeding stray cats.

At first glance, it sounds like government run amok, but it’s really not. Feeding feral cats is not innocuous. Feral cats have lots of nasty diseases and the food you put out for them brings in other animals, such as rats and raccoons. I know this because, about 15 or so years ago, I spent two years of my life working on a crazy cat lady case. She’d started putting food out for cats and was eventually feeding every raccoon and rat within an umpteen block radius. These animals, some of which could have been rabid, were breaking into surrounding homes and threatening children.

Heck, just think about what’s going on in Baltimore, Los Angeles, Sacramento, Seattle, San Francisco, and all those other Leftist-run cities that allow human behaviors that encourage rats and raccoons. Those cities are starting to have medieval diseases. There’s nothing cute about engaging in behaviors that encourage vermin.

I don’t care that this gal is a cute little cat lady. What matters is that she refuses to stop illegal behavior that civil government rightly discourages. It’s a step in the direction of public health and the rule of law to make her take things seriously (something she clearly hadn’t done after numerous citations).

If you want to listen to the podcast, which roughly parallels the post above, you can click on the player below. Alternatively, here’s a link in case you can’t get the embedded link to load. I really would like to make a go of it, so assuming you find the podcast somewhat meritorious — I’d appreciate it if you’d spread the word:

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No. 2 Bookworm Podcast — Night Two of the Democrat Debates

The second night of the Democrat debates again revealed that Democrat candidates are anti-Constitutional, power-hungry, very strange people.

I’m still going forward with my podcast experiment but, as I promised, I’ll keep blogging too. I’ll include a link to the podcast at the bottom of the post, but here, more or less, is what I talked about.

First, my primary impression was that all of the Dems on the stage led with their emotions. Indeed, it was often all that they had to offer. The worst of it was when they got to the subject of illegal immigration. It seemed as if all they could say was “the children! the children!”

None of the candidates, however, seemed to have any compassion for American children. They didn’t care about American children who end up in the foster system because their parents committed illegal acts. They didn’t care about American children killed by gang members who entered America illegally. They didn’t care about American children orphaned or killed by illegal aliens driving drunk. The only children they care about are the Latin American ones.

The whole thing emphasized — again — that Democrats really despise Americans. We Americans betrayed the Democrats’ power grab when we voted for Trump and they want their revenge: they want us to be reduced to a minority by a population that is already accustomed to corrupt governments that use socialism to control them and, moreover, a population that will vote Democrat. This isn’t about race; it’s about culture. No matter how horrible Latin American governments are, they gave their people free things. It’s very hard to train a people used to enslavement — with the prison walls made up of horrible services rather than walls and metal bars — to leave that prison and embrace true liberty. And that’s why the Dems want them and not you.

And here’s what I said, more or less, about a few of the candidates:

Kamala proved last night that she’s a good candidate when she’s in an offensive position and a dreadful one when she’s in a defensive position. In other words, she can handle herself when she’s been prepped, but falls apart when she’s blindsided, as she was by Tulsi.

This is consistent with what I’ve always heard about her, which is that she’s Willie Brown’s disciple. He does the thinking and she does the acting. Because Kamala works hard, she can prep for anticipated scenarios and come off looking good. However, because she’s not very bright, when the unexpected happens, she’s helpless. If identity politics is enough to power her to the nomination (female and black, albeit, like Obama, not part of the American black experience), Trump will eat her alive. And if, by some bizarre chance, she gets to the Oval Office, unfriendly foreign leaders will eat her alive too.

I also dislike Kamala’s voice. She sounded sedated last night, highlighting the fact that her nasal voice sounds bored and condescending. When she roused herself to some semblance of anger, she sounded shrill and shrewish. She can give Hillary a run for the money in the unpleasant affect category.

What really made me crazy about Kamala was when she insisted that healthcare is a “right” not a privilege. In America, our rights are defined by the Constitution. Moreover, they are rights inherent in each one of us, entirely separate from the government. Unlike the situation in socialist countries, government can neither give us these rights nor take them away from us. Only in socialist systems is a “right” something entirely under government control.

If Kamala wants healthcare to be a right, there are two ways to make it happen. First, you amend the Constitution. Second, you get the government out and open healthcare entirely to the free market. In that way, healthcare comes under people’s control and out from under government control.

Moreover, that will help control prices because a significant part of what we pay for our healthcare is actually government compliance. Back in 2008, I read that insurers in California were subject to 1,500 separate regulations, both state and federal. Texas, which eschewed most state regulations, was therefore able to offer substantially cheaper insurance. I don’t know how Obamacare affected that, but I do know that regulations cost lots and lots of money.

Another thing Kamala did was to emote over illegal alien children in a government facility:

I went to a place in Florida called Homestead, and there is a private detention facility being paid for by your taxpayer dollars, a private detention facility that currently houses 2,700 children.

And by the way, there were members of us — Julian was there, members of Congress, they would not let us enter the place, members of the United States Congress. So I walked down the road, I climbed a ladder, and I looked over the fence. And I’m going to tell you what I saw. I saw children lined up single file based on gender being walked into barracks.

I don’t know about you, but except for the size of the place, that sounds like every American summer camp ever for the last 100 years. Moreover, what the Left refuses to admit is that we separate children for their own good. After all, stories like this demonstrate that “family asylum” is an invitation for predators and traffickers:

A Honduran migrant admitted to purchasing a baby for $80 in Guatemala after finding out that it was easier for family units to apply for asylum at the United States border.

Amilcar Guiza-Reyes, 51, confessed to immigration agents when he presented himself at the border with the six-month-old boy and was told he would be required to undergo a DNA test.

According to U.S. officials, the undocumented immigrant, Guiza-Reyes reportedly bought the child during his stop in the western Guatemalan town of Huehuetenango and continued his journey through Mexico before reaching the southern U.S. border where he was detained May 7.

The case is one of thousands which officials flagged as potentially fraudulent in recent weeks. (Emphasis mine.)

As for the other stuff about Kamala — her complicated health care plan, her verbal slip ups, etc. — you can read more and better analyses about those things elsewhere.

When it comes to Biden, who did manage to hang in there by the tips of his fingers (and he owes Tulsi a debt of gratitude for that), Trump really did a number on him with the “Sleepy Joe” moniker. You could see Joe trying desperately to be super perky to belie any signs of age and torpor. However, by the end of the 2.5 hour long evening, he was showing the strain. He was often talking in word soup (lots of words, not lots of meaning), and he set himself up for an endless meme when he gave that weird call out to some sort of text or phone number.

Biden also revealed that there’s nothing moderate about him. He did so by stating, loud and proud, that “we should put some of these insurance executives who totally oppose my plan in jail for of the $9 billion opioids they sell out there.”

That’s wrong on so many levels. First, insurance executives don’t sell opioids. Second, they’re not doing anything illegal by paying for appropriately prescribed opiate prescriptions. Third, he didn’t say they should be jailed if they engage in illegal activity regarding opiates. He said they should be jailed if they “totally oppose my plan.” You know who agrees with that attitude? Maduro does. So does Erdogan. And Kim Jong un does too. Those are dictator words, not moderate worlds.

Lastly, I think Biden went overboard trying to sell redemption for prisoners. I’m all for offering redemption for those who feel remorse, but Biden sounded as if he wanted to set them up for life:

Right now, we’re in a situation where, when someone is convicted of a drug crime, they end up going to jail and to prison. They should be going to rehabilitation. They shouldn’t be going to prison. When in prison, they should be learning to read and write and not just sit in there and learn how to be better criminals.

And when they get out of prison, they should be in a situation where they have access to everything they would have had before, including Pell grants for education, including making sure that they’re able to have housing, public housing, including they have all the opportunities that were available to them because we want them to become better citizens.

Inslee strikes me every time as a moron who’s also a climate change monomaniac. I’d like to laugh at him, except that too many people are marching in the same parade he’s trying to lead. No wonder every Leftist wants fully taxpayer funded college. It’s at those colleges that they turn out indoctrinated drones who believe in “science” as if it’s a magic spell, rather than a process — a process, moreover, that the climatistas have long since abandoned.

Gillibrand provided the best unintentional laugh. Before I get to that, though, let me say that I have never seen someone speak in so many cliches (although Booker tries), nor have I ever seen anyone so nakedly ambitious. She says anything and everything — often contradictory things — in her endless efforts to scrabble her way up to the top tier of politics.

But back to the funny thing. Although it got a laugh, her “joke” about cleaning out the Oval Office with Clorox was not funny. First, she never made that kind of joke about Bill Clinton, who really did soil the Oval Office. Second, Trump has behaved with apparently perfect discretion since he’s been in the White House. Third, Gillibrand’s father was tangled up in that NVXM sex slave cult. She should leave jokes about sleaze at home.

No, the really funny thing was when Gillibrand touted herself as a “white privilege translator”:

I think as a white woman of privilege, who is a U.S. senator, running for president of the United States, it is also my responsibility to lift up those voices that aren’t being listened to.

And I can talk to those white women in the suburbs that voted for Trump and explain to them what white privilege actually is, that when their son is walking down a street with a bag of M&Ms in his pocket, wearing a hoodie, his whiteness is what protects him from not being shot.

When his – when her – when their child has a car that breaks down, and he knocks on someone’s door for help, and the door opens, and the help is given, it’s his whiteness that protects him from being shot. That is what white privilege in America is today. And so, my responsibility’s to only lift up those stories, but explain to communities across America, like I did in Youngstown, Ohio, to a young mother, that this is all of our responsibilities, and that together we can make our community stronger.

Gillibrand knows that this is B.S. If she really believed it — heck, if any of the white candidates believed this — she and all of the others would withdraw from the presidential race. After all, they keep arguing that their white privilege is practically insurmountable. The only way to give non-whites a chance is if whites stay out. No wonder the DCCC fired all its white people! If whites are as toxic as Gillibrand says, they need to go.

And that’s what I put on the podcast, which you can find here or listen to here:

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Are there any normal Democrat primary candidates?

Watching the Democrat primary candidates emerge on the debate stage will be like watching a clown car disgorge its contents. Currently, they’re a joke.

I’ve been looking at the roster of current candidates for the Democrat primary and I have to ask — are any of them normal? Please understand that I’m not talking about qualifications. I’m really just talking about normalcy, as Warren G. Harding would have said. And for the ones who are normal, they are so undistinguished it’s almost breathtaking.

Just think about this roster of announced or thinking-about-announcing Dem presidential candidates. They make Jeb! look like a normal dynamo. Indeed, they make every Republican candidate ever look normal, scintillating, and highly qualified:
John Francis O’Rourke — Hit and run drunk driving, cow porn poetry, feeding his wife baby feces, eating dirt, sweating excessively, and so much more. Much, much more.

John Hickenlooper — Watches hardcore porn with his mother. ‘Nuff said.

Elizabeth Warren — She’s Fauxcahontas with a tin political ear and she drinks beer like a robot.

Joe Biden — Do I need to say more than “bad touch” Biden?

Cory Booker — I call him Spartawuss. Ace calls him “the Fiercely Heterosexual Cory Booker.” I’d respect Booker more if he’d just admit that he’s gay. Oh, and he admits to assaulting a woman in college.

Amy Klobuchar — The politician who would give Joan Crawford a run for her money in the “no wire hangers” category.

Kamala Harris — A woman who started her political career by sleeping her way to the middle, who lacks any charm, who has bad political instincts, and who lies about smoking pot in college. No, just no.

Andrew Yang — There’s the whole “don’t circumcise me, bro” thing, plus there’s that thing about handing out taxpayer money like candy. Why doesn’t he start with handing out his own money like candy?

Marianne Williamson — Her campaign asks people to “think. love. contribute.” She’s a New Age guru. Do I need to say more about that, either?

Bernie Sanders — Aside from being a hardcore communist, which means he cheerfully accepts one of the most evil, deadly ideologies in human history, he honeymooned in the Soviet Union, never met a totalitarian dictator he didn’t like, and drunkenly sang songs half-naked while in Russia. Really?

Kirsten Gillibrand — Do we really want as president a woman who sounds like a Barbie doll on helium and one, moreover, who panders to the Left even more than Elizabeth Warren? I don’t think this woman has stuck to any principled position ever.

Jay Inslee — This is a man with zero name recognition. Other than that, he’s a generic Leftist politician who’s been tight with the Clintons. He’s a Leftist of last resort.

Pete Buttigieg — The only openly gay candidate (sorry, Cory, you should have been honest). Buttigieg sounds great on paper, at least if you’re a Leftist (he loves Bernie), and he’s got that whole Bill Clinton Rhodes Scholar thing. The problem is that Buttigieg presides without distinction South Bend, Indiana — and that’s the sum total of his management experience.

Julian Castro — Like Inslee, a completely generic Leftist politician. His only distinctive qualification in the Democrat Party is that he’s Hispanic. Haven’t we learned from Obama that electing to the presidency because he’s a token representative of his race doesn’t presage good outcomes?

Tulsi Gabbard — Sorry, Tulsi, but you’re way too close to Assad in Syria. That’s some serious bad judgment.

John Delaney — Who?

Trump is now and always has been an eccentric, so maybe he doesn’t meet the “normal” metric. Nevertheless, before becoming president, he had a stunningly accomplished career distinguished by actual accomplishments. Moreover, in his two years as president he’s racked up a string of executive successes both domestic and foreign capped by getting a clean bill of health from political operative Robert Mueller and his team of Trump-hating attorneys.

I don’t see any of the Democrat clown car passengers taking Trump on successfully in 2020. Of course, that’s what everyone said about Trump vis-a-vis the Republican primary candidates so no, I’m not making predictions. I’m just struggling to deal with the facts before me.

Sitting here, I see a bunch of really weird or totally blah people, all of whom lack significant accomplishments. And that’s not even factoring in their hard, harder, hardest Leftist positions and their active or passive embrace of the anti-Semitism Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib have made the Democrat Party’s worst kept secret.

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