Category Archives: Climate Change

Bookworm Beat 11/9/19: Illustrated edition with Trump virtues and Dem corruption

A monster illustrated edition that reminds you who Trump is and who the people are who wish to destroy him, along with the usual silly stuff and beauty.

We start with wisdom about impeachment and reminders about why we support President Donald J. Trump. Please consider sharing the first two posters, for they articulate core American principles people should know.

Some forgotten footage of Trump being interviewed back in the 1980s. He’s always been a doer and someone who loves America:

And now back to Deep State people who wish to destroy Trump. In poster immediately below, by the way, that’s Eric Ciaramella with a whole bunch of very powerful Democrats.

And now to the ordinary stuff, the stuff not about Donald J. Trump, that reminds us why, no matter how you feel about Trump the man, you need to support Trump the President:

A reminder who we are as Americans:

And I’ll leave you with lots of laughs:

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No. 29 Bookworm Podcast — Your government hates you; it really hates you

This podcast uses homelessness and the military as a prism to focus on the ruling class’s disdain for ordinary Americans and its transnational allegiance.

My latest podcast is up and running. You can listen to it through the audio embed below, or at LibSyn, or through Apple Podcasts. This podcast discusses:

1. The homeless “crisis,” which really involves governments using taxpayer dollars to subsidize homelessness.

2. The fruits of Obama’s military — one dedicated to social justice and climate change — reveal themselves in the attacks his high-ranking officers (plus one of Clinton’s officers) level at Trump.

3. Around the world, the ruling class has nothing but disdain for the people it rules, seeing itself instead as a transnational brotherhood government for like minded people in other governments — and the people are starting to rebel.

Here are hyperlinks to articles I cite. To the extent I cite to an earlier post I did, if the links are already in that post, I have not reiterated them here:

Heather MacDonald’s podcast at City Journal’s Ten Blocks

My post about the cancer in Obama’s military

The Navy press release about Harpy Daniels, the Navy drag queen

The Navy Times article about Harpy Daniels

The CNN article describing the spate of Naval accidents

The fact that John Kennedy also canceled newspapers

As always, if you like this podcast, please share it with others and leave a review at the Apple podcast site. It’s the only way the podcast can grow. Also, feel free to email me at bookwormroom *at* I am very slow responding to emails, but I do read them and I always respond (eventually). I’ll also put up a companion post tomorrow.

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Bookworm Beat 9/28/19 — the Ukraine and climate change illustrated edition

When politics get stupid, as they did last week with climate change and Ukraine whistle blowers, the memes get really good — and I’ve got lots of them.

Pennywise Adam Schiff Ukraine hoax

And as a bonus, Mini-AOC is back with back with a wonderful parody:

The post Bookworm Beat 9/28/19 — the Ukraine and climate change illustrated edition appeared first on Watcher of Weasels.

Bookworm Beat 9/22/19: the anthro-moronic climate change illustrated edition

I admit that I got carried away in this illustrated edition — 69 pictures! — but between climate change cultism and general Leftism, I couldn’t resist.

Climate Change

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Bookworm Beat 9/4/19 — my political Festivus edition

When it comes to Leftist lunacy, I feel like Frank Costanza on Festivus: “I got a lotta problems with you people, and now you’re going to hear about it!”

Festivus time for airing of grievancesYes, it’s a little early in the year for a Festivus celebration, but the news is irritating me so greatly that I simply have to speak out. Here are a few of my specific peevish grievances (that is, these aren’t large, existentially ideological grievances, but are small, peevish ones instead) with the Left:

1. “This is the worst [weather event] in history!” You see it in all the headlines: “Hottest day in history!” “Worst hurricane in history!” “Coldest winter in history!” These headlines make me crazy and it’s not just because they’re being used to shill anthropogenic climate change fears nor is it because a lot of them are false. (For example, since 1924, there have been thirty-five Category Five hurricanes in our part of the Atlantic, most in September. Dorian was just the latest, not the most exceptional.)

No, what really irks me is that phrase “in history” or its companion phrase “ever” (“Worst heat wave ever!”) What the dopes in the media miss, or perhaps willfully ignore, is the fact that we have barely any weather history. Instead, we’ve only been measuring weather data since the second half of the 19th century. I learned this when I read Simon Winchester’s delightful Krakatoa: The Day the World Exploded: August 27, 1883. In it, he notes that the volcano’s explosion was the loudest sound ever recorded — and that it was recorded only because the Victorians had an obsession with record keeping.

Before the Victorians came along, there were always people who kept records, but once the Victorians came along it became a “thing.” For the first time in human history, people had (a) instruments that could measure things with a fair degree of accuracy and that were affordable, and (b) the literacy and leisure time to note and record these things.

Thus, in the late 19th century, owning a reliable thermometer, checking the weather daily, and taking the time to write it down was something entirely new. Before that, there were no reliable thermometers and only the richest could afford such unreliable tools as existed for measuring temperatures. The fact that people were no longer living at subsistence level and were literature enabled them to find the time and have the skills to record data.

That’s why we know how loud Krakatoa: All over the world, as the sound waves reverberated around the earth, over and over, busy Victorians were looking at their reliable time-pieces (the first affordable, mass-produced watches were driven by railway needs and came onto the market in the late 19th century) and noting down the time at which they heard that strange loud noise.

All of which means that our reliable weather data isn’t about “history” or “ever,” but is, instead, about 150 years old, at most. Everything else is guess work, based upon random reminiscences and best guesses using things such as Arctic core samples or tree rings.

Even before President Trump during his mere two years, and despite dropping CO2 emissions from the US, managed to destroy the environment (or so the Left claims), bad weather events happened. As it happens, just today, Trump tweeted out his own debunking of the Left’s climate claims.

One example of bad weather, really, really bad weather, happened in 1713, in Charleston, South Carolina, when the storm was so severe that the Ashley and Cooper Rivers both rose and inundated the entire city. Indeed, the 18th century was a miserable one for deadly Atlantic storms. Moreover, in those days before satellite weather forecasts, people routinely died at sea during storms, something that almost never happens now. In other words, not only are there fewer storms now, but modern science better protects people from those that happen. Note too, that when it comes to protecting people from the weather’s fury, whether it’s the satellites in space, the newsrooms that disseminate weather data, the better built houses and boats, or the roads that evacuate people and bring in supplies, fossil fuel makes all that survival possible.

For another example of a hellish weather phenomenon, don’t forget the 1900 Galveston, Hurricane, which is estimated to have killed 10,000 people. The only reason Katrina killed so many in the modern era, despite all the modern I described in the preceding paragraphs, is because Democrat-government graft meant that the levies were not properly maintained. It was their breakage, not the storm itself, that killed.

The reality is that we have no idea what the worst weather events are in history, because our knowledge of history, when it comes to weather is so minute as to be useless for purposes of ranking weather events. So it really gets my goat to see media outlets try to terrify people with historically illiterate claism.

2. “Making news out of nothing at all.” I loved the old Air Supply song Making Love Out of Nothing at All. (I was in my very early 20s when it came out, so what do you expect?) What I hate is the way our modern era, a combination of social media and a professional media that has nothing to do but stir up trouble, makes news out of nothing at all.

For example, the fact that some harried barista in Philadelphia heard a Muslim-looking guy (who was in fact Muslim) say my name is “Aziz” and then wrote down “Isis” is not news. It’s not news if the barista was illiterate as many are; it’s not news if the barista was rushed and careless; and it’s not even news if that random barista was not being nice. It’s not news if one person somewhere sustains a minor insult. The media should be assiduously ignoring this story, not relentlessly promoting it.

And remember, we’re not just talking a local media outlet promoting it, something like a neighborhood Patch website. This link about the Aziz/Isis story goes to the WaPo, for goodness sake! In it, you’ll learn that the guy to whom it happened, instead of laughing it off as another example of wacky barista spellings or saying to himself “what an a-hole” and then letting it go, had an emotional breakdown: “I was shocked and angry. I felt it was discrimination.”

Get over yourself, dude. In fact, everyone who magnifies every slight into a deep personal attack needs to get over himself, herself, xirself, or whatever else self that person is.

Here’s the overarching message we should be sending: None of you are that important and your feelings are not news.

Now, if Starbucks, a hard Left chain at which employees still occasionally manage to do things that offend Leftists, had as its official policy that “Irish need not apply,” or “Negros need to place their orders at the back door,” or “Jews need to report to the local concentration camp” — well, that would be newsworthy. Errant, low-paid, low-level employees who do stupid things need to be ignored (although a word to management is often helpful).

The media’s obsession with individual feelings or failings, though, is not newsworthy. It’s sick and it destroys societal cohesion.

3. Making teenage medical records private. I know someone whose son has a very serious medical problem. He’s currently scheduled for a surgery that might help control the problem.

After the surgery was scheduled, the mom went to the hospital website to make sure all the data was in order: date, time, medical allergies, description of surgery, identity of surgeon, etc. To her surprise, she was blocked from logging on. A phone call to the hospital revealed the problem: Because her son had turned 12 after they scheduled the surgery, she was now barred from seeing any of his medical records. She went ballistic.

There’s an easy enough fix for the Mom, of course, which is to log in as your child. I did that for years, with my children’s hearty approval, because they were totally uninterested in monitoring their appointments, vaccinations, prescriptions, etc. If your child doesn’t approve, though, even though you are legally responsible for your child’s well-being (and both loving and even un-loving parents feel morally responsible), you are shut out.

But let’s think for a moment about why a 12-year-old should have medical privacy. What could a 12-year-old be doing that would cause problems if Mom and Dad found out? Only one thing, of course: Sex.

The 12-year-old gets privacy rule is so that girls can get on the Pill and get abortions, and so that both girls and boys can get treated for sexually transmitted diseases. Privacy helps ensure teen sex, the younger the better. I’ve got a problem with that.

Lefties, of course, will point out that parents can be cruel if they discover their youngster is having sex. This is true. A small minority of parents will be cruel, perhaps dangerously so, but it’s easy to imagine that those parents are already dangerously cruel.

A larger minority will be angry at their child if they learn the child is engaged in sexual activity at age 12. But here’s the deal: The government does not exist — and should not exist — to protect teens from angry parents when the teens engage in illegal, unsafe, or immoral behavior. As the saying goes, that’s not how this works. That’s not how any of this works.

The reality is that most American parents love and care for their children. For the government to deny parents access to their children’s healthcare is a step to breaking that bond, destroying the nuclear family and, through that mechanism, increasing the power of the state.

This 12-year-old thing happened under the radar. Perhaps we should put it back on the radar and get the government out of parent/child relationships.

4. President Trump’s tweets. The preceding bolded language is a bit of a head fake. I actually love President Trump’s tweets. I almost always find them amusing or informative and they always have a point. The point may be to circumvent a hate-filled media, to taunt unfriendly countries, to position himself in campaigns, or to make traditional presidential statements, but they’re never random happenstance, no matter how much the Left likes to pretend otherwise.

However, Derek Hunter, in a podcast the other day, had his own point and I thought it was a good one: President Trump needs to make some serious statements about his policies. I instantly thought of Roosevelt’s fireside chats. We know from Trump’s performances at State of the Unions and other official occasions that he and his speechwriters can craft spectacular speeches that drive home powerful principles in compelling language.

It would be an excellent thing if Trump would make 10-15 minute videos in which he explains in simple, but serious, language the rationales behind his policies. He needs to explain why he won’t jump on board the anthropogenic climate change band wagon; why he believes illegal immigration is bad for America and for Latin America; why Israel is our ally; why socialism is bad; why the Second Amendment matters; why 3rd trimester abortions are wrong; etc.

Trump does reference all or most of those issues at his rallies. However, even though the rallies are lots of fun, the really important policy ideas or factual statements tend to get lost. Sometimes they’re awkwardly phrased, which diminishes their power; or they’re buried in a mountain of issues so no one notices them; or they’re broken up, so that the whole picture only shows if you listen to every rally speech he’s given. That’s not good enough.

Thinking about it, I would love it if whoever does the PragerU videos would go to the White House and give President Trump’s staff a primer in doing similar videos to those PragerU produces: short, honest, incredibly clear, pointed, and informative. It would be hugely helpful to political discourse in this country if serious Americans had a little more to hang on to than tweets and disjointed campaign speeches. I know we have a short attention span in modern America, but surely we can handle an intelligent 5-10 minute video from our president explaining important matters of public policy.

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About those fraying National Parks

I don’t doubt that our National Parks are in need of repair, but some of them might find extra funds if they’d stop their climate change virtue signaling.

The Daily Caller reports that America’s National Parks are in a state of extreme disrepair:

The most iconic U.S. national parks need billions of dollars in maintenance to repair crumbling roads, dilapidated buildings, rundown campsites and leaky pipelines, according to experts and federal government figures.

Nearly $12 billion is needed to repair infrastructure, mostly crumbling roads, at 419 park units managed by the National Park Service (NPS). The maintenance backlog grew $313 million in 2018 alone, federal figures state.

“It’s a problem that cannot continue indefinitely,” John Garder, a senior director at the National Parks Conservation Association, told The Daily Caller News Foundation in an interview.

The Interior Department has been grappling with its growing deferred maintenance backlog for years even as millions of people visit national parks every year. Park advocates worry the growing need for repairs could not only ruin a visitor’s experience but also damage natural habitats.

I’m not going to argue with that assessment, for I’m perfectly ready to believe that the federal government, whether through bureaucratic mismanagement, corruption, or actual lack of funds (perhaps partly due to being spread too thin thanks to Obama-era land grabs) has fallen down on the job of maintaining America’s National Parks. I wonder, though, if one of the funding problems might be misplaced priorities because the parks are staffed and managed by people who have bought wholesale into the whole climate change ideology.

Item One for my off-the-cuff theory is a story that made the rounds just last week: Glacier National Park had signs telling people to enjoy the glaciers while they could because anthropogenic climate change meant that they’d vanish by 2020. As with all climate change doom-and-gloom predictions, the signs were wrong and needed to be changed:

The National Park Service (NPS) quietly removed a visitor center sign saying the glaciers at Glacier National Park would disappear by 2020 due to climate change. [Ed: This article leads with a reference to one sign, but reading on makes it clear multiple signs were wrong and needed to be changed.]

As it turns out, higher-than-average snowfall in recent years upended computer model projections from the early 2000s that NPS based its claim glaciers “will all be gone by the year 2020,” federal officials said.

“Glacier retreat in Glacier National Park speeds up and slows down with fluctuations in the local climate,” the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), which monitors Glacier National Park, told The Daily Caller News Foundation.

“Those signs were based on the observation prior to 2010 that glaciers were shrinking more quickly than a computer model predicted they would,” USGS said. “Subsequently, larger than average snowfall over several winters slowed down that retreat rate and the 2020 date used in the NPS display does not apply anymore.”

Aside from the fact that it’s irritating to be hectored constantly by environmentalists (something that always irked me at San Francisco Zoo, where every animal enclosure came with a lecture), those signs cost money. Had they been done at a neighboring Kinko’s, they might have been cheap, but since they were federal signs on federal property, they were probably priced at federal prices. I’m sure you remember the $640 toilet seats at the Pentagon back in 1986. (That’s $1,495 per toilet seat in today’s dollars.)

And speaking of toilet seats, that brings me to Item Two in my short list of examples positing that climate change virtue signaling might be driving up management costs in our National Parks. In California, low flush toilets are ubiquitous. This makes sense because, the state has failed to upgrade its water infrastructure since 1960, despite regular droughts in a naturally semi-arid climate and the fact that the state’s population has doubled in 60 years. Not every place, though, suffers these kinds of shortages, which brings me to Cades Cove.

Cades Cove is a valley that’s part of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The cove is extravagantly beautiful. It also has an interesting history. In the late 18th century, the Cherokee established a small village (or possibly just a permanent hunting camp) in Cades Cove. In 1819, thanks to the Treaty of Calhoun, the Cherokee lost their claim to the cove. Europeans came to the cove in 1818.

What makes this remote cove fascinating is that the small group of families that settled there lived in relative isolation for the next 100 plus years. They were not completely isolated, for they traded with neighboring communities, had a post office, sided with the Union in the Civil War, and also sent their sons to WWI and WWII. Still, Cades Coves’ residents were an isolated community, making moonshine, marrying within the community, supporting several very fundamentalist churches, and not having water or electricity until the 1930s and 1940s. Their rudimentary cabins and churches remain to delight the visitor looking to see how Americans lived in a pre-modern era.

I found something else fascinating about Cades Cove, which is that the National Park Service is doing an unimpressive job of managing the place. For one thing, there are no placards at the various sites. A one-way, 11-mile road takes the visitor past 12 different historic structures. None of them have information beyond the name of the structure. At Glacier National Park, they’re spending money on nonsensical signs to warn about a nonexistent glacier Armageddon, but at Cades Cove they can’t be bothered to tell visitors about the sights.

The visitor’s center was no help. Rather than having a display with good information about Cades Cove, it was just a gift shop that was almost indistinguishable from the gift shops that litter the American landscape at privately held tourist attractions. There was one other thng about the visitor’s center that bugged me: the bathrooms.

To begin with, the women’s restroom was dirty, with toilet paper all over the floor. I don’t know if that was mismanagement or lack of funds, but the mess contrasted strongly with the obviously recently retrofitted low flow toilets in each stall. This kind of low flow toilet:

Those low-flow handles aren’t that expensive, but they obviously cost more than leaving the old handles in place. They also make no sense to me. According to the National Park Service, “The average annual rainfall in the highest elevations of the park is around 85 inches.” To help put that rainfall in perspective, San Francisco averages less than 20 inches of rain per year; Minneapolis averages 28 inches of rain per year; and New York City averages 47 inches of rain per year. In other words, there’s a lot of water in the Smoky Mountains. In other words, water conservation in the Golden Gate Recreation Area makes sense. It makes less sense in one of the rainier regions in the U.S. (Please advise me if I’m wrong, and that in fact it’s difficult to get water into and sewage out of the well-visited cove.)

While those handles are a minor cost in a big budget, if you multiply climate change virtue signaling costs (e.g., signage and flush handles) across the entire National Park system, it’s going to add up. You could say that we’re going to see lots of public money get flushed down the toilet. Between land grabs and virtue signaling, before pouring more money into the parks, we the taxpayers should first see unnecessary costs chopped from the federal budget.

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Ah, Earth Day…the Irony!

Monday April 22nd. was Earth Day. A day dedicated to saving the planet through energy conservation and…recycling!

STOCKTON — A thick, billowy plume of black smoke visible for miles scarred an otherwise pristine blue sky over the Port of Stockton on Monday afternoon, caused by a stubborn, wind-blown fire at… a recycling center. …The blaze was fueled mostly by pallets of paper, plastics and other recyclables.

Forget your carbon offsets! Ain’t no thicker, blacker smoke than a good plastic fire. Burning tires (pictured) come close, if you have enough of them, but the irony of filling a pristine blue sky with thick black smoke from recyclables on Earth Day was just too precious not to take note of! And, lest we forget, April 22nd. is also Vladimir Lenin’s birthday!

Happy Earth Day from Stockton, California! Happy belated birthday, Vlad!

Mike A.K.A. Proof writes at Proof Positive

Photo by Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources

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President Trump is the “dayenu” president

No matter how imperfect Trump is, looking at his record of accomplishments, as to each one I say the Passover word “dayenu” — it would have been enough.

During the Passover dinner, one of the songs Jewish families sing is Dayenu. It is in the nature of a “count your blessings song,” with the song reciting each of God’s miracles during the Exodus and, after every verse reciting “dayenu,” which means “it would have been enough” or “it would have sufficed.” Growing up,  I considered this song one of the best parts of the proceedings. I was in good company, for Jews have been singing Dayenu for around one thousand years.

The song consists of three groups of praise for God’s miracles. The first group recites the miracles that challenged Pharaoh, the second recites the miracles that were the Exodus itself, and the third recites the miracles of being with God and getting the Ten Commandants during the forty years in the wilderness. Chabad provides a nice version of the lyrics in  both English and Hebrew:

If He had brought us out from Egypt, and had not carried out judgments against them Dayenu, it would have sufficed us! אִלּוּ הוֹצִיאָנוּ מִמִּצְרַיִם וְלֹא עָשָׂה בָהֶם שְׁפָטִים דַּיֵּנוּ
If He had carried out judgments against them, and not against their idols Dayenu, it would have sufficed us! אִלּוּ עָשָׂה בָהֶם שְׁפָטִים וְלֹא עָשָׂה בֵאלֹהֵיהֶם דַּיֵּנוּ
If He had destroyed their idols, and had not smitten their first-born Dayenu, it would have sufficed us! אִלּוּ עָשָׂה בֵאלֹהֵיהֶם וְלֹא הָרַג אֶת בְּכוֹרֵיהֶם דַּיֵּנוּ
If He had smitten their first-born, and had not given us their wealth Dayenu, it would have sufficed us! אִלּוּ הָרַג אֶת בְּכוֹרֵיהֶם וְלֹא נָתַן לָנוּ אֶת מָמוֹנָם דַּיֵּנוּ
If He had given us their wealth, and had not split the sea for us Dayenu, it would have sufficed us! אִלּוּ נָתַן לָנוּ אֶת מָמוֹנָם וְלֹא קָרַע לָנוּ אֶת הַיָּם דַּיֵּנוּ
If He had split the sea for us, and had not taken us through it on dry land Dayenu, it would have sufficed us! אִלּוּ קָרַע לָנוּ אֶת הַיָּם וְלֹא הֶעֱבִירָנוּ בְּתוֹכוֹ בֶּחָרָבָה דַּיֵּנוּ
If He had taken us through the sea on dry land, and had not drowned our oppressors in it Dayenu, it would have sufficed us! אִלּוּ הֶעֱבִירָנוּ בְּתוֹכוֹ בֶּחָרָבָה וְלֹא שִׁקַּע צָרֵינוּ בְּתוֹכוֹ דַּיֵּנוּ
If He had drowned our oppressors in it, and had not supplied our needs in the desert for forty years Dayenu, it would have sufficed us! אִלּוּ שִׁקַּע צָרֵינוּ בְּתוֹכוֹ וְלֹא סִפֵּק צָרְכֵנוּ בַּמִּדְבָּר אַרְבָּעִים שָׁנָה דַּיֵּנוּ
If He had supplied our needs in the desert for forty years, and had not fed us the manna Dayenu, it would have sufficed us! אִלּוּ סִפֵּק צָרְכֵנוּ בַּמִּדְבָּר אַרְבָּעִים שָׁנָה וְלֹא הֶאֱכִילָנוּ אֶת הַמָּן דַּיֵּנוּ
If He had fed us the manna, and had not given us the ShabbatDayenu, it would have sufficed us! אִלּוּ הֶאֱכִילָנוּ אֶת הַמָּן וְלֹא נָתַן לָנוּ אֶת הַשַּׁבָּת דַּיֵּנוּ
If He had given us the Shabbat, and had not brought us before Mount Sinai Dayenu, it would have sufficed us! אִלּוּ נָתַן לָנוּ אֶת הַשַּׁבָּת וְלֹא קֵרְבָנוּ לִפְנֵי הַר סִינַי דַּיֵּנוּ
If He had brought us before Mount Sinai, and had not given us the Torah Dayenu, it would have sufficed us! אִלּוּ קֵרְבָנוּ לִפְנֵי הַר סִינַי וְלֹא נָתַן לָנוּ אֶת הַתּוֹרָה דַּיֵּנוּ
If He had given us the Torah, and had not brought us into the land of Israel Dayenu, it would have sufficed us! אִלּוּ נָתַן לָנוּ אֶת הַתּוֹרָה וְלֹא הִכְנִיסָנוּ לְאֶרֶץ יִשְׂרָאֵל דַּיֵּנוּ
If He had brought us into the land of Israel, and had not built for us the Beit Habechirah (Chosen House; the Beit Hamikdash) Dayenu, it would have sufficed us! אִלּוּ הִכְנִיסָנוּ לְאֶרֶץ יִשְׂרָאֵל וְלֹא בָנָה לָנוּ אֶת בֵּית הַבְּחִירָה דַּיֵּנוּ

So you can get a sense of the melody, here is the Maccabeats’ charming version of the song (although when we were kids we perked up rather than collapsing during the song):

The point of the song, obviously, is not to get greedy, but to be grateful for whatever gifts or miracles come your way. God doesn’t need cumulative miracles to prove His greatness and the debt Jews owe Him. Each little thing He did, standing alone, would have been enough.

So what’s this got to do with Trump? Well, let me first assure you that I am not likening Trump to God. He is no God. He is, instead, a very imperfect man, but one who nevertheless has taken a series of steps that, even if each stands alone, is a reminder why a Trump presidency is so much better than the Hillary alternative.

The genesis for this thought came about because I got an email from a very dear friend, one whom I respect more than you can imagine, who is baffled by my fondness for Trump. Before the Mueller report, he saw Trump as a crude buffoon. Since the Mueller report, he sees him as a dangerously corrupt individual. Worse, he sees Trump as way less successful than a good Republican president should be. As readers of this blog know, I’ve come to hold Trump in quite high esteem. Thinking about how to explain my esteem to my friend, I came up with the “dayenu” meter.

To begin with, remember that America’s choice in November 2016 was completely binary: Hillary or Trump. So we’re not measuring Trump against some perfect Republican candidate; we’re measuring Trump against Hillary, who was committed to continuing the Obama administration, although with the addition of the Clintons’ unique brand of financial corruption. It is in that context that I look at what Trump has done. (As an aside, I would argue, as Wolf Howling already has, that Trump is proving to be an extraordinary conservative president who, only halfway through his first term, can measure up even to Ronaldus Magnus.)

Also, regarding what Trump has not done, or not yet done, I never lose track of the fact that, for two-and-a-half years, Trump has been contending with the weight of an entirely false accusation that he entered into a conspiracy with Russia to keep Hillary from the White House. (Incidentally, that’s why Trump said he was “f**ked* when he realized the immensity of this whole Russia collusion hoax. He wasn’t saying, “Oh, my God, the jig is up! I’m going to jail.” He was saying, “Oh, my God, this will paralyze my effectiveness as a president.”)

So here’s my dayenu recital for Trump:

If Trump had merely presided over a booming economy, even if one accepts Leftist talking points that it wasn’t his policies that made the change — Dayenu.

If Trump had merely lowered taxes, even if one accepts Leftists talking points that lower taxes didn’t help the economic boom — Dayenu.

If Trump had merely massively cut regulations, even if one accepts Leftist talking points that lessening the government’s stranglehold over businesses didn’t help the economic boom — Dayenu.

If Trump had merely presided over minorities seeing the best economic years of their lives, even if one accepts Leftist talking points that Trump didn’t help the economic boom — Dayenu.

If Trump had merely appointed two conservative Supreme Court justices, even though the remaining Leftists Supreme Court justices show no sign of vacating their seats — Dayenu.

If Trump had merely put dozens of strict constructionists in federal appellate and district courts, even though enough Leftist judges remain to thwart many of his policies — Dayenu.

If Trump had merely taken seriously and worked hard to address American’s concerns about illegal aliens flooding our southern border security, even though the Democrats’ have successfully hamstrung Trump through Leftists activist judges — Dayenu. (Don’t get me started on Congress’s failure to act on the southern border when Republicans controlled both houses. Just don’t get me started.)

If Trump had merely shifted the long-standing, failed paradigm that saw the US sending no-strings (or almost no-strings) money to North Korea and, instead, offered Kim Jong-un a carrot and stick approach to abandoning North Korea’s nuclear program, even though Kim recently conducted a rocket test and talked to Putin — Dayenu. (I’m not worried about Kim allying with Putin, because he’s always been allied with communist regimes; I think his recent posturing, including that rocket test, is just that — posturing intended to keep his own worst enemies, the ones inside his regime, at bay.)

If Trump had merely defeated ISIS on the battlefield, even though radical Islamism remains a worldwide scourge — Dayenu. (You have to start defeating radical Islamists somewhere, especially because it’s the nature of Islam to respect a strong horse and want to gut and devour a weak one.)

If Trump had merely walked out of the illegal Kyoto Accord, which was set to deplete the American economy while propping up the hyper-polluting Chinese economy, even though his administration is still paying some lip service to the cult of climate change — Dayenu.

If Trump had merely supported a reinvigorated American oil, gas, and coal sector, which will bring employment to vast numbers of people and lower product prices for everyone, even though the climatistas are up in arms — Dayenu. (I have long believed that “renewables” cannot provide First World energy needs. Forcing America onto renewables will return us to a pre-industrial time which, while pastoral, was deadly and uncomfortable. The answer is to use our technology to make cleaner-burning fossil fuels and, if Scott Adams is correct, to turn to Generation IV nuclear reactors, which are completely safe and will burn up existing nuclear waste.)

If Trump had merely withdrawn from the illegal Iran Deal — which propped up the mullahs and funded world-wide terrorism — and instead reimposed economic sanctions on Iran, even though the mullahs are still rattling sabers and making trouble — Dayenu. (Nobody expected the mullahs to collapse the instant Trump undid that vile deal; it’s enough that he undid it and is starting to reapply pressure on a very shaky regime.)

If Trump had merely reinvigorated the American military by pouring more funds into it and by ending the habit of treating it as a social justice experiment, even though doing so hurts the feelings of transgender people — Dayenu. (The military exists to protect our nation, not to make people feel good about themselves.)

If Trump had merely put the screws to China’s predatory trade practices, which have been depleting the American economy for decades, in such a way that China appears to be backing down, even though people on the Left and the Right are now saying all tariffs are bad — Dayenu. (I believe in free trade, but free trade works only if there isn’t cheating. Moreover, while many claim that things will eventually right themselves if left alone, that’s a fine thing to say to one or two generations of Americans who are economically destroyed by China’s unfair trade practices, which include intellectual piracy, slave labor, and government underwriting in the marketplace. This “dayenu,” incidentally, also goes to the new trade deals Trump negotiated with other nations.)

If Trump had merely managed to de-fang most of Obamacare, which was a drag on the economy and which destroyed people’s relationships with their physicians while doing nothing to improve the delivery of medical care in America, even thought the vicious, unprincipled John McCain did everything he could to block Trump’s efforts — Dayenu.

If Trump had merely proved to be the staunchest friend Israel has ever had in the White House, or certainly the staunchest friend since Reagan, and implemented policies that are putting a stop to the Palestinians’ non-stop, bad faith demands, even as the whole Democrat Party is turning increasingly anti-Semitic — Dayenu.

If Trump had merely presided over a Department of Education that withdrew the “Dear Colleague” letter that turned already Leftist campus administrations into fanatically man-hating entities that destroyed young men without due process and on the merest threads of accusations, even though . . . I don’t know what “even though” clause could be used here — DAYENU!

If Trump had merely threatened to withdraw federal funds from institutions of (ostensibly) higher education that squash free speech, even though . . . heck! There is no “even though” here either.  DAYENU!

If Trump had merely shown fearlessness in the face of stifling, Leftist political correctness, thereby freeing other Americans to speak honestly, even though . . . what’s the downside here? None. DAYENU!

I could go on all day with this. Trump is rude, crude, bumptious, impulsive, cold-blooded, combative, etc. I see that. I also see that he’s incredibly funny, that he has a wonderful knack for making Leftists reveal their true colors, and that his initiatives, even if imperfect or ultimately ineffective, nevertheless have shifted paradigms at home and abroad in ways that are important to and beneficial for America.

As far as I can tell, the worst thing that Trump has left completely unfixed and unaddressed — and something that is a dangerous time bomb that could destroy America — is the $21 trillion national debt, which skyrocketed under Obama and has continued to rise under Trump. This is unsustainable and we need to work hard and fast to bring government spending down even as we hope that the soaring economy will help increase tax revenues to pay off that debt.

Also, while I’m on the subject, I want to address the Mueller report’s statement that Trump refused to let Mueller interview him and the allegation that Trump played with the idea of dismissing Mueller and, while he eventually did not do so, asked White House counsel to lie about the fact that he even contemplated that dismissal.

First, the undoubted fact that Trump refused to allow Mueller to interview him: No sane attorney would have allowed Mueller anywhere near his client. We saw with General Flynn that the Mueller approach was to trip people up on small, inconsequential details, and then use those trip-ups to prosecute them for perjury in the hope of squeezing more out of them. It was Mueller’s version of the torture Torquemada used during the Spanish inquisition.T

Just think for a moment about the fact that the FBI agents who interviewed Flynn believed he was trying to tell the truth, but that he didn’t remember something they knew only because of their spying. Despite Flynn’s manifestly honest intentions, and the fact that he did not committed any of the crimes for which he was being investigated, Mueller destroyed Flynn professionally and financially, and finally brought Flynn to heel by threatening Flynn’s family.

Imagine what would have happened if Mueller, with all the information available to him through Obama-era spying, had gotten his talons into Trump. The only way to protect Trump was (a) to demand that Trump respond only to written interrogatories that could be carefully reviewed with an attorney and (b) to have Trump in those interrogatory responses denying remembering anything as to which he did not have absolutely perfect recall. To do otherwise would have thrown Trump into the maw of the new American Stasi.

I’m equally unimpressed with the allegation that, according to White House counsel Don McGahn, Trump wanted to fire Mueller, backed down on that desire, and then instructed his attorney to lie. It’s meant to show that Trump had evil in his heart, even though he didn’t fire Mueller, and then he tried to make his attorney complicit in that evil. Let’s unpack this, shall we?

First, we only have Don McGahn’s word for this. Trump was never asked about his side. The due process protections of examination and cross-examination are missing, making this pure hearsay from an attorney who had witnessed how Mueller destroyed the lives of those who didn’t cooperate with him. In that way, his testimony was probably as honest as any testimony coming from one of Torquemada’s victims.

Second, I can tell you as an attorney with decades under my belt that clients, when talking to their attorneys, often ask, “Can we do X?” or “Can we do Y?” with X and Y being either stupid or against the law. By the way, please remember that things can be against the law even if they’re not morally wrong. One of the scary things about today’s over-legislated and over-regulated world is that it’s impossible for us to know what the law is, making us sitting ducks for zealous or biased prosecutors. The fact that Trump didn’t know his suggestion couldn’t fly means nothing.

Once client asks such a question (“can we do X?”), the attorney’s role is to be extra cautious to protect the client. This may mean drawing lines that the attorney recommends the client not cross. When you have a bulldog client such as Trump, you, as the attorney, may have to take a strong stand to show that you’re not joking about the fact that something that seems logical and moral is still illegal: “No, you can’t do that, and if you insist on doing it, I’ll have to quit as your counsel.”

If that thread is indeed what McGahn had to make, Trump then did what 99% of clients do: He backed down and McGahn remained as his attorney. But Trump is in a unique class. Rather than this back-and-forth staying confidential, so that no one knows what ideas a client had before behaving perfectly legally, his attorney spilled the beans, making Trump look uniquely evil rather than completely ordinary.

One more thing about Trump’s query about firing Mueller, if he indeed did make that query: To the extent Trump knew he was being framed, it was quite reasonable for him to wonder if he could stop a baseless witch hunt intended to invalidate an American election.

Third, keep in mind that we’re dealing with exceptionally humorless people here. I sure you remember how, on the campaign trail, Trump said, “Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing,” Sane people immediately recognized that Trump was making a humorous riff about the fact that Hillary’s blatant, grossly illegal security violations meant that the Russians had almost certainly been in possession of her emails for years.

Insane people — and that means the entire Left — insisted that Trump had the brazen effrontery to demand in public that Putin collude with him to hack Hillary’s already hacked emails. When you remember that Mueller’s attack dogs were all die-hard Democrat establishment members, you start to wonder, as I do, it’s entirely possible that Trump made an obvious joke to McGahn (“Hey, remember not to tell Mueller I wanted to fire his humorless little ass”).

So, yeah, I’m totally unimpressed by Mueller’s obstruction drama. And if you’d like more reasons to be unimpressed, I recommend watching this Mark Levin video on the subject:

Finally, if you’re interested in a stellar analysis of Trump — warts and all — as well as an explanation for why every American should find appalling the behavior of the bureaucratic caste arrayed against him, I highly recommend this Victor Davis Hanson interview, every minute of which is entertaining and informative (hat tip: Maggie’s Farm):

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Bookworm Beat 3/8/2019 — the Democrat Party goes full anti-Semitism

An illustrated edition focusing on the Dems’ weirdly ecumenical transition from anti-Black (slavery, Jim Crow, ghettoization) to untrammeled anti-Semitism.
(Plus other examples of the myriad threats socialists pose to America, and the way Trump is a bulwark against those threats.)

Before getting to the posters, a short video I urge you all to watch:

We now return to our regularly scheduled illustrated edition

Anti-Semitism Ilhan Omar David Duke Democrats

The post Bookworm Beat 3/8/2019 — the Democrat Party goes full anti-Semitism appeared first on Watcher of Weasels.

NPR goes full bat guano crazy

You should never go, well you know

Via Newsbusters:

“Should We Be Having Kids In The Age of Climate Change?”

That was the audacious question NPR’s website and All Things Considered radio show asked on Aug. 18, as it promoted a college professor’s “radical” proposal that people need to have fewer children because of the “prospect of climate catastrophe.”

The academic proposed a “carbon tax” on children, to decentivize procreation, in wealthy nations.

NPR correspondent Jennifer Ludden reported that Professor Travis Rieder presented “moral” arguments to James Madison University students, claiming the best way to protect future generations from the threat of climate change is “by not having them.”’

Read the rest here