Tuesday, February 28, 2017
The "Echo Chamber" lives on.
In an article on the Atlantic website, a former Obama White House staffer explains why she resigned from the Trump White House after only eight days. Rumana Ahmed thought she should "try to stay on the NSC staff during the Trump Administration" she writes, "in order to give the new president and his aides a more nuanced view of Islam, and of America's Muslim citizens."But then the executive order suspending visa issuance for Syrian refugees and suspending it temporarily for nationals of seven Muslim majority countries forced her hand. She quit. She "had to leave because it was an insult walking into this country's most historic building every day under an administration that is working against and vilifying everything I stand for as an American and as a Muslim."The basic premise of the story doesn't pass the smell test. Trump campaigned with an opening bid to temporarily ban all Muslims from entering the United States. But Ahmed wanted to stay on anyway. And then she left, after eight days, when a much more lenient policy was implemented. It doesn't make sense.Hers was the second story in less than a week in which a government official explained that they'd resigned because of Trump's policies. Ned Price, a CIA analyst who worked at the Obama White House, authored a cri de coeur for the Washington Post to explain why his disagreements with Trump's policies prompted him to leave government service. "To be clear," wrote Price, "my decision had nothing to do with politics."What a strange coincidence that Price and Ahmed worked for the same person in the Obama White House, national security adviser for strategic communications, Ben Rhodes. In fact, they worked in the same room, outside of Rhodes' office, as the 2016 New York Times Magazine profile of Rhodes showed: "In the front office, [Rhodes'] assistant, Rumana Ahmed, and his deputy, Ned Price, are squeezed behind desks, which face a large television screen, from which CNN blares nonstop."Among their other duties, Price and Ahmed helped manage Rhodes' "echo chamber" to market Obama's policies. Former CIA analyst Price explained to the Times magazine how he manipulated American public opinion from his desk in the White House. The Obama NSC relied on "compadres" in the media to proliferate its message, Price said. "I will reach out to a couple people, and you know I wouldn't want to name them — "Atlantic magazine journalist, and now editor, Jeffrey Goldberg was one of the Obama White House's validators, according to the Times magazine. With the Rumana Ahmed story, it's not clear if Goldberg was complicit with the echo chamber, or if he was used by it. When I emailed the editor of the Atlantic to ask for clarification regarding Ahmed's employment status in the White House, Atlantic magazine senior director for communications Anna Bross replied: "Rumana Ahmed was a direct hire by the NSC and not a political appointee. She was staff and planned to stay on."That's wrong. Ahmed was a political appointee in the Obama White House. According to Trump White House officials, it was very late in her tenure in the Obama administration when she applied for a civil service position with administrative duties. "Burrowing," as it's commonly called, is the process through which political appointees move into career government status. She was granted her new status at the end of January, just as the Trump team was moving into the White House. That is, Ahmed took the highly unusual step for a White House staffer of choosing a considerably less ambitious career path in government, as she went from a junior policy position to a secretarial post.Why? Because as a political appointee from the Obama administration she was inevitably going to be replaced by a Trump appointee and she wanted to stay on. And yet in only four days—not eight, because, say sources, she took several days off—she came to the conclusion that she had failed in her attempt to influence the Trump team, which in fact "was attacking the basic tenets of democracy."Right, it was a set-up. The article is part of an information operation. Paired with that of her former officemate, Ned Price, Ahmed's story pushes the message that Trump is so bad that gifted public servants are resigning from their positions. The Washington Post story from late January incorrectly reporting that the mass exodus of senior officials from the State Department was unique to the Trump White House, rather than the normal bureaucratic turnover that greets every new administration, touched on the same narrative. In this case, it seems that Ahmed applied for a post only in order to resign from it, after collecting a paycheck for four days. Thus, U.S. taxpayers covered research expenses for an Atlantic story.Is Ben Rhodes behind this latest echo chamber campaign? Who knows? It's equally unclear why Atlantic editor Jeffrey Goldberg, rightly sensitive to charges that he's a willing political operative, would put himself in position to be compromised. In the email, I asked Goldberg why Ahmed didn't just play it straight. Why did she have to misrepresent her employment status? Isn't the story good enough to stand on its own without misleading the public? Her argument is not totally unreasonable, and supported by lots of other people.As it stands, her article, along with that of her former NSC staff colleague Ned Price, is part of a political campaign, the effect of which is to further undermine one of America's key political institutions, the press.As I argued elsewhere recently, "Everyone knows that the press typically tilts left, and no one is surprised, for instance, that The New York Times has not endorsed a Republican candidate since 1956." A little less well known outside of Washington, D.C. is that the CIA also leans to the left, at least many agency analysts, like Price, do.But this is no longer simply about bias. Large parts of the press have willingly become instruments in a campaign of political warfare. This, as Rhodes told the New York Times Magazine, was the purpose of the echo chamber. "I'd prefer a sober, reasoned public debate, after which members of Congress reflect and take a vote," Rhodes explained. "But that's impossible."The damage that the echo chamber has done to the public sphere is part of Obama's legacy—and, many contend, part of the reason for Trump's success. Payback is why the Trump White House banned the Times, CNN and several other major news organizations from a press briefing Friday.For many, this will confirm Trump's hostility to a free press. It is difficult to make that case, however, when the press continues to lease itself out to the Democratic operatives managing the echo chamber, even out of power. Eroding the public space with information operations, like the Ahmed and Price articles, does not preserve democratic institutions, but further tests the public's faith in them.The logic at work here—retaliation and doubling down—is not conducive to procedural politics. Rather, it is the logic of eliminationism, in which power cannot be shared but must be held absolutely by one side or the other. It is the style typical of Third World regimes and other morally corrupt polities. It is inimical to building consensus and respecting the shared rights, privileges, and obligations that are the hallmark of liberal democracies. If there is no consensus available in the public sphere, because that space has been corrupted, the only possible way to govern is by taking all the other side's players off the board. This is not governing but ruling.
Monday, February 27, 2017
There is no doubt it is best to have a fair and independent press, just as there is no doubt it is best to have a sober and kind mother.But what if the press is unfair, biased, incompetent, and lies like an actual propaganda outfit?Wouldn't you prefer they recognized the problem and reformed themselves?Similarly, yes, you'd like a sober and kind mother. But what if a mother is a chronic junkie and abusive to her children? Shouldn't she de-toxify herself both chemically and psychologically?And if you don't insist on that -- but just babble on about how important a mother is, no matter how unmotherly she may be -- aren't you just a damn enabler to evil?A lot of "conservatives" -- Crocservatives, let's call them -- seem to be defending the media while the media still refuses to admit it's done a damn thing wrong, and in fact is just doubling down on all its sins.Mollie Hemingway makes this point a lot. She's often badgered, "Don't we need an adversarial media?" She says yes, but then points out the need to reform.No one in the media, nor the Democrats, nor the Establishment GOP, wants a reformed media. Not now, certainly.They want it in full partisan War Room mode, because they are short of generals in their armies at the moment.So to avoid conceding the very real need for media reform and reflection, they dodge the question by framing the only question as "Isn't the media important?"Why yes, yes it is. And a mother is important too.But when I tell her to get off the crack, she shouldn't keep telling me that mothers are important and that it's unamerican to criticize moms (or apple pie or baseball).
Labels: The Press
Ace of Spades
One thing became clear to me after reading Bush's book about his father is that he is thoroughly Establishment, as is every member of his family. He's not going to fight to change things for the American worker because they are cogs in the machine. He and his class are very much a feudal aristocracy. Noblesse Oblige and all that but Noblesse above all.One thing that strikes me is that Bush was pretty ignorant of the press as president or at least posed as being ignorant of them. On one hand, I guess, he was trying to float above them.On the other hand, he very rarely rebutted the actual opposition party in the country, the national media, and I know many of his supporters pulled their hair out begging for him to actually do some presidential communications on this front. (And trying, futilely, to do for Bush what he couldn't or wouldn't do for himself.)Strange to me that guy whose Administration was hit by a thousand Grim Milestones and cooked-up scandals (Valerie Plame, for example) would be so kind to the media.My theory is that both the Democrats and the semi-deposed Establishment GOP have few hands at the levers of power -- except for their friends in the media and the permanent DC bureaucracy, so both have some investment in cultivating those power centers and pushing for them to have continued power.Or even expanded power: Bill Kristol tweeted he favored the Deep State over the Trump state.In the Democrats' case, it's just more of their same strategy of 60 years. In the Establishment GOP's case, it's making peace with an old adversary to destroy an even more dangerous, existential-threat adversary.It just surprises me -- in a way that perhaps it should not -- that so many "conservatives" are now taking the media's side, as it's tottering and wounded in a way that it has literally never been in my lifetime.For some, it seems, the leftist media isn't the hero they deserve, but it's the hero they need.
I’ve spent the last day and a half in dread, looking at the coordinated attack on Milo, and the debacle on the right. As someone who was never-Trump before it was cool, and who only capitulated because she was never-Hillary more, and an anti-communist from the time she could understand the word, I felt divided when people piled on on never-trumpers. But this is ridiculous and has passed all bounds of civilized behavior.The charges against Milo are contrived from a) video editing and b) rumor and innuendo and c) pretending no one ever used the word “boy” to mean man, thereby meaning playboy is for 10 year olds and “playing with the big boys” means middle schoolers.IF the attack on Milo were about, say how outrageous he got before the election (he’s been walking it back since. I suspect he gets a little battle mad as I tend to.) I’d shrug and say “whatever”. However this is a contrived and false attack and one that apparently came from the right but is teaching the left the way to take every one of us down. You might not like Milo or his lifestyle, but you should not under any circumstances, applaud this means of taking him down. And if you do, I hope you experience likewise and get to experience what you like so much. There is a good chance you will. They’ve tasted blood with Milo. We’re next.Links: the full unedited thingThe other full unedited thingPossible McMullin involvementMilo fighting pedophiles: here, here and here. And now, what I have to say.*For years, in publishing and in the arts, if you weren’t a hundred percent behind them, the whisper campaign started: “She’s white supremacist.” “She’s racist.” “She’s an homophobe.” (Yes, I have been accused of that. By the left AND the right.)And if the right buys into this, denounces and piles on, it just gives power to the left. Do you see them distancing themselves from irresponsible, economically corrupt Hillary? No. But you self-righteous little goody two shoes can’t wait to distance yourselves from Milo.And his is how you give the left the rope to hang you with.Milo is taking fire, because he can communicate with college students; because he’s getting a following; because his VERY EXISTENCE denies the stereotype that the right is racist/sexist/homophobic. The left HAS to destroy Milo.And if you cooperate in his destruction, you are next.You can tell them “you took that out of context, and you should be ashamed of yourself for rushing to judgement.” You can mock them with the Shaw quote. You can call them the judgmental prudes they are.Or you can let Milo be taken down and cower in the dark, waiting for the knock on your door. It WILL come.
Labels: Milo Yiannopoulos
I’ve slowly, gradually, achingly reached the conclusion that for a committed ctrl-Leftist, there is not now, nor can there ever be, a Good Conservative. There are Nice Conservatives—who will of course be patted on the head and given table scraps, for being willfully second class human beings in the hierarchy of moral perfection—but there are no Good Conservatives.Perfect example: Mitt Romney never got treated any better than they treated Bush before him, nor Trump after him.I happen to think Mitt was the most genuinely decent person to run for the Presidency since Reagan, and yet Romney got called Literally Hitler just like they call all of us Literally Hitler, whenever it suits them.The Nice Conservative is an indentured servant, polishing the silver in the ctrl-Leftist mansion. Never speaking unless spoken to. Tipping his hat. Straining to smile, and step out of the way. Whenever they tell you to shame someone, you shame them. Whenever they tell you to hate someone, you hate them. If they tell you to escort that person to the door, you not only escort him to the door, you throw thim out with vigor — and pray that the ctrl-Left Master notices.But as soon as any of us stop being Nice, or we actually start to peel their grubby little paws off the levers of power, they freak out. It’s a four-alarm house fire. We all become Literally Hitler. For daring to stand up. The indentured servant has talked back. This is a violation of the rational order. Sacrilege.Thus the Nice Conservative will get thrown out of the mansion and beaten with a rod, along with all the other Mean Conservatives—whenever it suits the ctrl-Leftist Master’s purposes.Ergo, we are all Deplorable. All of us.
Read the whole thing.
Sunday, February 26, 2017
Ever wonder how the poor get all those drugs, legally, with which they are killing themselves?
Why Trump wonBut how did so many millions of un-working men, whose incomes are limited, manage en masse to afford a constant supply of pain medication? Oxycontin is not cheap. As Dreamland carefully explains, one main mechanism today has been the welfare state: more specifically, Medicaid, Uncle Sam’s means-tested health-benefits program. Here is how it works (we are with Quinones in Portsmouth, Ohio):[The Medicaid card] pays for medicine—whatever pills a doctor deems that the insured patient needs. Among those who receive Medicaid cards are people on state welfare or on a federal disability program known as SSI. . . . If you could get a prescription from a willing doctor—and Portsmouth had plenty of them—Medicaid health-insurance cards paid for that prescription every month. For a three-dollar Medicaid co-pay, therefore, addicts got pills priced at thousands of dollars, with the difference paid for by U.S. and state taxpayers. A user could turn around and sell those pills, obtained for that three-dollar co-pay, for as much as ten thousand dollars on the street.In 21st-century America, “dependence on government” has thus come to take on an entirely new meaning.
Thus the bittersweet reality of life for real Americans in the early 21st century: Even though the American economy still remains the world’s unrivaled engine of wealth generation, those outside the bubble may have less of a shot at the American Dream than has been the case for decades, maybe generations—possibly even since the Great Depression.IVThe funny thing is, people inside the bubble are forever talking about “economic inequality,” that wonderful seminar construct, and forever virtue-signaling about how personally opposed they are to it. By contrast, “economic insecurity” is akin to a phrase from an unknown language. But if we were somehow to find a “Google Translate” function for communicating from real America into the bubble, an important message might be conveyed:The abstraction of “inequality” doesn’t matter a lot to ordinary Americans. The reality of economic insecurity does. The Great American Escalator is broken—and it badly needs to be fixed.With the election of 2016, Americans within the bubble finally learned that the 21st century has gotten off to a very bad start in America. Welcome to the reality. We have a lot of work to do together to turn this around.
Saturday, February 25, 2017
When the Media are not only liars, they are stupid liars.
The media is selling the proposition that Trump is a Russian puppet. As Walter Russell Mead points out:
If Trump were the Manchurian candidate that people keep wanting to believe that he is, here are some of the things he’d be doing:
- Limiting fracking as much as he possibly could
- Blocking oil and gas pipelines
- Opening negotiations for major nuclear arms reductions
- Cutting U.S. military spending
- Trying to tamp down tensions with Russia’s ally Iran
Who does this actually sound like? Right, the first time, you smarty you, it's Barack Obama! But othe media though that obama was a wise and firsighed statesman and Trump, who wants to expand oil exporation, including fracking, build more pipelines, build up the U.s. military and impose sanction son Iran is Russia's worst nightmare.
Yet, according to the really stupid liars in the press, Trump is supposed to be the Russian puppet.
You can't make this stuff up.
Some in the media are convinced that Trump is a Putin puppet AND a war hawk who will start World War 3.
There's not fixing stupid.
Some in the media are convinced that Trump is a Putin puppet AND a war hawk who will start World War 3.
Already there are some days when they mount both attacks at the same time: the hawkish traitor whose Nazi style America First ideology leads him to lick Putin’s boots. The media wants to cast Trump as both Neville Chamberlain and Adolf Hitler; but you can’t give the Sudetenland to yourself.
There's not fixing stupid.
Friday, February 24, 2017
Letter to Patricia Richardson, publisher of the Virginian Pilot
Dear Ms. Richardson:
The steady stream of hate directed at Donald Trump and his supporters on the pages of the Virginian Pilot really has to be seen to be believed. The idea that Republicans are Nazis from whom women, Blacks, LGBTQ or those-of-to-be-determined-sex need to be protected is widespread on these pages. In this, the Virginian Pilot has a lot in common with academia.
The paper reflects academia’s profound shock of Hillary Clinton’s defeat last year, reflecting the profound shock of many inside the media/campus bubble. Academia offers “grief counseling” to students “traumatized” Trump’s election. The Virginian Pilot offers unlimited access to the “letters to the editor” department. At Virginia Tech the morning after the election, officials sent an email to students “waking up with fear, anxiety, concern, questions, and confusion among many other emotions,” directing them to campus services offering “support.” The Virginian Pilot assured them that no one they write about voted for Trump so Trump can’t be a legitimate President. Every day brings another story about a march, a demonstration, a riot and a claim that Putin put him in office.
In Greenwich Village, a woman who sounds exactly like any number of letter writers to the Virginian Pilot, let loose an obscenity-filled tirade against the police officers who were attempting to keep order outside New York University’s Kimmel Student Center, where College Republicans were hosting a speech by comedian Gavin McInnes. Screaming that President Trump’s supporters at the event were “Nazis,” the woman unleashed more than a dozen obscenities in less than two minutes. “Why are you here?” she screamed at the NYPD officers. “You’re not here to protect these students from Nazis. No, you’re not! This is completely [bleeped] up. And these students had to [bleeping] face them on their own. You should be ashamed of yourselves! You should be standing up to those Nazis!” The woman was Professor Rebecca Goyette, an adjunct professor at Montclair State University in New Jersey. Professor Goyette last year staged an exhibit that included her fantasies of castrating Donald Trump. You can see her “art” here: (http://archive.is/yO3a9)
There’s a certain playbook that Liberals follow: Nixon was Hitler, Goldwater was Hitler, Reagan was Hitler, Bush was Hitler and how Trump is Hitler. Of course conservatives have also worried about presidents who abused their power. But calling Trump Hitler, or Mussolini, is now so common that it simply means that the writer simply doesn’t like Trump and has lost the intellectual battle. Name-calling is simply overdone and foolish, just as accusations of racism have become devalued; people stop paying attention and those who use these terms lose all credibility.
It’s really simple. If Trump is a Nazi, his supporters must be Nazis. Someone voted for Trump? Nazi. Someone voted against Hillary? Nazi. Someone doesn’t agree with same-sex marriage? That was Barack Obama in 2008, so he’s a Nazi?
Polls show that over half of the country supports Trump’s temporary ban on refugees, only 38% disapprove. An Emerson College poll found that the public views the Trump administration as more truthful than the news media, with 48% saying Trump is truthful, compared with only 39% who say the media are being truthful.
Among Independents 62% say they're not confident that the media will cover Trump fairly in the IBD/TIPP poll, and fewer than 19% describe the news media as truthful in the Emerson poll.
What's more, 59% of independents — and 57% of those who are ideologically moderate — say Democrats should find ways to work with Trump rather than try to obstruct him.
When Republicans lose elections they grumble and write letters to the editor. Before the election, Leftists said if Trump won, that there would be violent mobs of hate; intolerant fascists would try to silence those with whom they disagree. And they were right. Did they know that they were talking about themselves?
How did we get to the point that when Democrats lose they take to the streets and beat their opponents bloody? Part of the problem is that the legacy media provides cover for them; they are their publicity department. It whitewashes the violence and intimidation. Every riot is downgraded to a “demonstration” which is always “mostly peaceful.” The LA Times referred to the murder of five police officers as part of a peaceful protest in which the chant of “hands up don’t shoot” was heard just before the killing began. It was described by one participant as “… the most peaceful Black Lives Matter demonstration I'd been to.”
They said that if I voted for Trump, that groups of people would be identified and persecuted. And again, they were right. The press and the rest of the media identify anyone who supports the current president as either an extremist or a bigot. Yet Trump won the Electoral College by 70 votes, which means his support is hardly extreme; in fact it’s mainstream. Look at a map of voting patterns. Democrats are concentrated in a few urban islands while the rest of America is Trump country. Based on the narrative presented in the Virginian Pilot you appear to believe that most of America is out-of-step with America.
Day after day, week after week, the Virginian Pilot encourages anti-Trump vitriol, hate and violence by its editorial choices demonizing the President and his supporters, effectively justifying the violence done to those supporters who dare to raise their heads. Do you really want to be the heirs of the editorial writers of the Jim Crow era? They whipped up racists to do violence to innocent people who have the “wrong” skin color. Is the Virginian Pilot going back to the days of “Massive Resistance?” It remains to be seen how this will end, but I suspect it won’t end well.
It’s a mistake to go back to a time when the motto of the Virginian Pilot was "True to the Democratic Party in victory or defeat." I understand being partisan, leaning to the Left, being avowedly Liberal on the editorial pages. But there are lines that should not be crossed. In those ugly times newspapers didn’t actually urge the KKK to lynch black people, they just wrote about “uppity blacks” sullying the virtue of white women. People who were on the edge of violence got the hint, and innocent people died.
The press is always pressuring conservatives denounce hotheads on their side. But when it comes to lunacy on the left, the media looks away when it’s not actually supportive. That gives a green light to the conclusion that political opponents can be beaten, bloodied, or even murdered. After all, what right-thinking social justice warrior would not kill Hitler if he could?
Don’t encourage urban warfare with a wink or a nod; it’s never a good idea. Despite the fact that most of the violence has been directed at Trump supporters, there are hotheads on both sides. The optics of masked rioters setting fires and smashing windows, and protesters standing in the schoolhouse door, as Democrats did in Washington DC the other day brings back memories of George Wallace. Is this really the end of the political spectrum you want your newspaper to represent?
Your story about the local women who attended the Women’s March on Washington stands out in my mind as a great example of cherry picking, shaping the news to promote a Leftist worldview. The story said that the hats were “cat-eared.” What an interesting euphemism. In reality they were shaped like vaginas. The march was led and organized by people who wanted people to dress as women’s genitalia. And women did. Observers were blown away by the vulgarity of the speakers. The celebrities like Ashley Judd who spoke to the women shouted obscenities, spewed hatred for the duly elected President who they denounced as a moral monster bringing the dark night of Fascism to this country. One speaker, Madonna, told the crowd that she thought about “blowing up the White House.” Another featured speaker, Donna Hylton, was a felon who spent decades in prison for kidnapping, sodomizing and killing a real-estate broker, Thomas Vigliarolo. If this is really: “… the best of what we are all about” as the story says, I would hate to see the worst. The women from our area may be nice people, but they lent their presence to a bizarre and hate-filled event while your story omitted any reference to what the organizers were actually saying and doing.
On a closing note, I question the wisdom of aggressively alienating over half your readership.
Very truly yours,
Labels: Virginian Pilot
CPAC and The Camp of the Saints
CPAC thinks that the Republicans won the last election and that they are the Republican Party writ large. In a way, unfortunately, that’s true. What CPAC is doing is celebrating the victory of the man who refused to attend their last meeting, and whose nomination they opposed. In this meeting they showed they are the Party of the Small Tent. The Party of the Green Eyeshade. The Tax Collector for the Welfare State.
CPAC views itself as the distilled, pure, unsullied core of the Republican Party.
That's the core that has been losing the culture and the country for generations. Trump represents a rougher, tougher core tired of losing and willing to do what it takes to win rather than lose gracefully.
When I heard Dan Schneider read the altRight out of the Party, I immediately knew who they were: The Camp of the Saints.
Spoiler alert: at the end of the book, the Saints died.
Now that the Clintons are no longer ruling the roost, more of the truth will come out.
Illegal fundraiser for the Clintons made secret tape because he feared being ASSASSINATED over what he knew - and used it to reveal Democrats' bid to silence him
Getting on the wrong side of the Clinton Crime Family can get you dead.
Getting on the wrong side of the Clinton Crime Family can get you dead.
In the never-before-released footage, Chung described how he feared for his life after he publicly admitted to funneling money from Chinese officials to President Bill Clinton's 1996 reelection campaign.He also claimed Democrats pressured him to stay silent about his dealings with the Clintons and said the FBI tried to enlist him in a sting against a top Chinese general at a Los Angeles airport.
During Chung's case, DNC officials claimed he misled them and urged the judge to give him a harsh sentence. But the judge declined, and even noted in the sentencing statement that it was 'strange' nobody from the DNC was prosecuted for accepting the illegal funds.'It's very strange that the giver pleads guilty and the givee gets off free,' said U.S. District Judge Manuel L. Real.Judge Real also said the leaders of the DNC were 'two of the dumbest politicians I've ever seen' if they were not aware of the campaign funding scheme.He blasted U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno for failing to appoint a special prosecutor to investigate Democratic involvement in the scandal....'His concern about his safety was understandable, given that there had been three attempts on his life which required FBI protection… and given his knowledge of what happened to people such as Ron Brown, who as Secretary of Commerce, was deeply involved in arranging – and selling seats on - Clinton administration trade missions to China,' added Abernethy.Bob Abernethy, the church friend who helped Chung make the tape, said the death of Clinton's commerce secretary, Ron Brown, (pictured) was among the factors which had made him fear for his lifeBrown, the point person for Clinton's trade policy with China, was killed in a plane crash in Croatia in 1996. Some speculated that he was preparing to go public with information on the illegal Chinese campaign contributions shortly before his death
Thursday, February 23, 2017
Dear AP, I want to go to your bathroom. do you mind if I use the ladies room, or are yours all unisex?
An Arlington preschool teacher has been fired over a series of anti-Semitic posts on social media, including a tweet that said “kill some Jews.”Nancy Salem, who was fired from The Children's Courtyard, also retweeted: “How many Jews died in the Holocaust? Not enough!”Tweets by Salem and other University of Texas at Arlington students were made public after watchdog group Canary Mission reported that 24 current and former students had made anti-Semitic comments online.Salem, along with 18 other students in the report, belonged to the UTA chapter of Students for Justice in Palestine, which Canary Mission said was a “focal point for campus anti-Semitism.”
This kind of thing will not make it to the MSM.
Monday, February 20, 2017
Love or hate Donald Trump, one of the reasons he managed to win the election was that he spoke a truth we’ve all known for quite some time now, but which few others were willing to say openly: the press is the enemy of the American people. It’s a sad state of affairs, and indicative of the descent into technocratic government.
Why are blogs so popular on the Right?
The intrepid anti-blog freeper missed that point. No matter how much training the technocrats in government and media receive, we cannot trust them. They are no longer reporters of facts, they are agents of propaganda as dishonest and skewed as the editors of Pravda.
Blogging is relatively popular in the right-wing world, not necessarily because we are the best, or the most highly trained professionals, but because most of the highly trained professionals have stopped doing journalism at all. They are pure propagandists, at this point. The market had a demand for news that was either unslanted, or slanted the other direction in a sort of compensation for the blatant left-wing agitprop spewed 24/7 from the major news outlets (Fox possibly excepted).In other words, the proliferation of bloggers like myself is due almost entirely to the media not performing its own stated function. Some time ago, Tom Nichols and I got into it over whether or not the public ought to be informed about unclassified material. Tom took the position that it was better to keep as much as possible out of the public eye, because the public is too stupid, and decisions are best left to the experts.
Tom isn’t even a Leftist, but he is a technocrat. And his default position is trust the experts. He used the example of airline pilots. Certainly we trust them, right? The comparison was all wrong. Airline pilots are observably good at their jobs. We can see their record, and determine that for the most part, they do a wonderful job. The media, on the other hand, is observably bad, and in many cases intentionally so. We can see it in our own lives, when they misreport everything with a political spin. But some people still believe it is better to trust them because they are the experts? It doesn’t make any sense.
The media doesn’t like you. They wish you ill. If they could dispose of right-wing America with a wave of their hand, they would do it without hesitation. Their contempt for you is open and obvious.
I’ve had my issues with Donald Trump, and no doubt I will continue to have them. But on this matter, he is 100% correct, and conservatives ought to take note. The media is your enemy. They don’t merely disagree with you, they hate you. You are a basket of deplorables. You are bigots. You are the whitelash (even if, paradoxically, you are not white). You are stupid hicks, fundie Christian loons, or whatever else they might come up with.
They see you as the enemy. You ought to see them as the same. And, having done so, the advice of Francis Porretto is important to digest and understand fully.
Kevin Williamson does a pubic service by giving us a reminder of how the press described Mitt Romney.
The problem with the man currently leading the Republican party is that he is, as the Washington Post puts it, a hostage to the “fanatical policies of the extreme right.” His administration “insults women” and his unwelcome presence in public life “insults us all.” And, because the Republican party is all about the winning these days, the GOP establishment is “ready to forgive” . . . what? . . . “just about anything — as long as he wins.”
So says the Post, which is not alone in this estimate: Extreme on economic issues, extreme on the so-called social issues, he even has had an “extreme foreign-policy makeover,” according to The Atlantic. His views on immigration, MSNBC says, represent the Republican party “shrinking down to its most extreme elements.” One cable-news panelist insists he was the most extreme Republican presidential candidate ever. Paul Krugman laments that he has forsaken all serious policy thinking for “dangerous fantasy.” Nicholas Kristof of the New York Times is also alert to the “dangers” he presents, the “most dangerous of all” being his views on Iran, though Kristof also worries that he is too buddy-buddy with that awful, scheming Benjamin Netanyahu. Predictably, Chris Matthews and Rachel Maddow dogpiled him for his perplexing relationship with Moscow. Vice calls him a “sociopath” and Maureen Dowd dismissed him as “an out-of-touch plutocrat” who keeps “his true nature . . . buried where we can’t see it,” a devious figure who is so awful deep down inside that he “must hide an essential part of who he is” from the public.
that's when he springs the surprise and lets us in on the joke that his is how the press referred to Mitt Romney
Saturday, February 18, 2017
Dickerson tells Hewitt that we can’t throw out our standards on how presidents handle the media, but that “the press did all that good work ruining its reputation on its own.”
Dickerson specifically pointed out the tendency of the media to provide “hysterical coverage to every little thing”:
Right on!But that one comment, they don’t trust you anymore, is a summation of where we are in America, because I really do think Manhattan-Beltway elites have lost the country.
The liberal talk show host and conservative Breitbart editor tried to find common ground during an 11-minute discussion, which made national headlines earlier this week after previously scheduled Real Time guest The Intercept co-founder Jeremy Scahill dropped out of the show to protest Yiannopoulos’ booking.
“The reason [liberals] want to police humor is they can’t control it — because the one thing all authoritarians hate is the sound of laughter,” Yiannopoulos said.
“And also because when people laugh they know it’s true,” Maher agreed. “… You are so helped by the fact that liberals always take the bait.”
Labels: Milo Yiannopoulos
I don't think that first Amendment you refer to says what you think is says.
Friday, February 17, 2017
Her version of the story is false and the White House has the tape to prove it.
A work in progress. Read the whole thing:
The press has a problem, and it seems to be getting worse. Whether through bias, sloppiness, or sheer panic, the mainstream media has dropped its standards since President Trump was sworn in.Rather then adjusting adeptly to Trump's easy relationship with the truth and his tendency to abuse members of media, by dialing up their standards, a significant number of journalists have tripped over themselves recently to repeat every bit of gossip and half-cocked rumor involving Trump and his administration.
Tuesday, February 14, 2017
More mainstream media mess-ups: The Muslim Olympian 'detained because of President Trump's travel ban' was detained under Obama
Who's the liar, the press or the Muslim?
Reporters have done it again.
The latest media misfire on the Trump administration involves Ibtihaj Muhammad, a New Jersey native who made headlines last year when she became the first female Muslim-American to win an Olympic medal for the United States.
Muhammad, a lifelong American citizen, claimed in an interview last week that she was detained "just a few weeks ago" by U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents. She said she was held for two hours without explanation.
Her remarks on Feb. 7 earned her an entire news cycle, as several journalists ran with reports suggesting, and alleging outright, that the American Olympian had been ensnared in the president's executive order temporarily barring immigration from seven Middle Eastern countries.
But Muhammad has since clarified crucial parts of her story, including the date on which she was detained. A Customs official with direct knowledge of the incident has also disputed much of how she characterized what happened.
"She comes and goes many times. She travels quite extensively. She has never been stopped before," the official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said Monday in an interview with the Washington Examiner, confirming that she was indeed detained. "She wasn't targeted. The checks are totally random; random checks that we all might be subject to."
Journalists reacted to the story on social media with the usual mixture of despair and outrage.
The problem with this particular news cycle is that Muhammad was detained in 2016, weeks before Trump had even been sworn in as America's 45th president.
To put it plainly, reports suggesting, and alleging, that the executive order had ensnared an American champion are totally false.
Before we go, a few points bear further discussion, and none of them reflect well on Muhammad or the press.
First, it's mind-boggling that no one in that room on Feb. 7 thought to ask her for the exact date on which she was detained. It's a basic duty of journalism to get the who, what, where, when, why and how to every story. That Muhammad's interviewers didn't think to pursue the "when" is astounding.
Secondly, Muhammad isn't blameless in all of this. A less-than-charitable person would suspect her of being intentionally vague and imprecise. She was asked a simple "yes or no" question about the president's immigration order. Instead of giving a simple answer, she provided an anecdote involving the very misleading use of "just a few weeks ago."
Her follow up remarks in that interview are also suggestive. Here's the next part of the transcript:
PS: That must have been a scary moment for you.
IM: It's really hard. My human response is to cry because I was so sad and upset and disheartened — and just disappointed. At the same time, I'm one of those people who feels like I have to be strong for those people who may not be able to find that strength.
I feel like I have to speak up for those people whose voices go unheard. It was a really hard two hours, but at the same time, I made it home. I try to remember to be positive and to try to leave all these situations, even if they may be very difficult, with love. I think that we will come out on top as women, as people of color, as Muslims, as transgender people, as people who are part of the disabled community — I think that we'll come out on top.
Muhammad, who did not respond to the Examiner's request for comment, did no one any favors with her language. Her remarks seemed to suggest her detainment had something to do with the president's executive order. Based on the press' coverage of her comments, many reporters clearly took that to be her meaning.
Lastly, the biggest problem with this particular news cycle is that so many reporters took Muhammad at her word. Few attempted to corroborate her story with Customs. That much is evident from the fact that several journalists thought the incident occurred post-Jan. 27.
In short, this entire news cycle is the result of reporters rushing to fill in the blanks in vague remarks made by a Muslim woman who, they thought, had been affected by the president's immigration executive order. They thought wrong.
Monday, February 13, 2017
A U.S. Air Force B-52 Stratofortress, B-1 Lancer and B-2 Spirit fly over Guam after launching from Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, for an integrated bomber operation Aug.17, 2016. This mission marks the first time in history that all three of Air Force Global Strike Command's strategic bomber aircraft are simultaneously conducting integrated operations in the U.S. Pacific Command area of operations. As of Aug. 15, the B-1 Lancer will be temporarily deployed to Guam in support of U.S. Pacific Command's Continuous Bomber Presence mission. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Joshua Smoot)
The administration is considered truthful by 49 percent of registered voters and untruthful by 48 percent.
But the news media is less trusted than the administration, with 53 percent calling it untruthful and just 39 percent finding it honest.
Sunday, February 12, 2017
Interesting blog post. Examples ...
- Neo-nazi James von Brunn, the US Holocaust Museum shooter, June 2009, has been labelled a "right-wing" terrorist, and no doubt many vaguely think of him as a "Christian" terrorist.
- In fact, he could just as easily be called a "left-wing" terrorist: He hated Israel, opposed the Iraq War, thought 9/11 was an inside job, hated Fox News, hated neo-cons, hated Bush and McCain, and finally he hated Christianity, and said he was a socialist(the Nazis were collectivists).
- He referred to "the insane teachings of Jesus", and said the gospels are: "stuffed with lies, miracles, guilt trips, betrayal, virgin birth, eternal damnation, salvation - a scenario appealing to the superstitious, vulnerable, ignorant yearning sheep - he named his hoax "Christianity." ... "Christianity" destroyed Roman Civilization." So he is not a Christian terrorist.
- Andrew Joseph Stack, the perpetrator of the Austin tax office suicide attack in Feb 2010, has been labelled a "right-wing" terrorist.
- John Patrick Bedell, the perpetrator of the Pentagon shooting in Mar 2010, has been labelled a "right-wing" terrorist.
- Roger Stockham arrested in Jan 2011 for threatening a Detroit mosque.
- But, far from being a Tea Party member, he's leftist / Islamic / mentally ill.
- He is a convert to Islam, and said in the threats that he was: "a local Muslim terrorist on a roll." A witness says that he: "called himself a mujahedeen".
- In fact, this seems to be a case of a Sunni threatening a Shia mosque. And more. Not quite the Tea Party narrative, then.
- Acts 17 Apologetics point out that some people rushed to call him a "Christian" terrorist, and the local Police Chief even said:"He picked Dearborn as a stop because of the huge Arab and Muslim population." When in fact he picked a Shia Muslim mosque because he was a Sunni Muslim.
- In a similar phenomenon to the Tucson blood libel against Sarah Palin, people even accused Acts 17 Apologetics of inciting the attack! They have a lovely response: "It seems that our hate speech (i.e. drawing attention to disturbing facts about Islam, while maintaining our love for Muslims) somehow caused the Sunni-Shia split. Perhaps Jem believes that Nabeel and I constructed an Acts 17 time machine, travelled back to 632 and caused division in the Muslim community right after Muhammad died. Perhaps I went to Abu Bakr and said, "Hey! You should be leader!" Then Nabeel went to Ali and said, "You're better than Abu Bakr!" Fourteen centuries later, the division we caused led a Sunni convert to attack a mosque. Acts 17 must be even craftier than we thought!"
- The Washington Navy Yard shooting of Sept 2013 was not blamed on the right, but it was fascinating that the shooter turned out to be an Obama supporter.
- A friend said about him: "He was more of a liberal type; he wasn't happy with the former [Bush] administration. He was more happy with this [the Obama] administration -- as far as presidential administrations."
- Of course, primarily he was mentally ill.
- But don't you think that if he was a Tea Party supporter, all hell would have broken loose?
- It also emerged that the shooter created a webpage with the name "Mohammed Salem", though there is no evidence he was Muslim.
- The Las Vegas shooters in June 2014 were labelled as "right-wing".
- However, it turned out they were supporters of the left-wing "Occupy" movement.
Before the election, we were told that Trump was a Nazi and his jackbooted thugs would take over and put people into camps and treat them as nonhumans. That is, to do what was only done previously in America by Democrats.Society is more divided now than at any time since the Civil War. People hate other people because of who they voted for. People are even choosing friends and breaking apart from family members based on who they supported in the last election. Beyond Facebook unfriending, relationships are impacted. It’s based on fear, disappointment, and hatred, and it seems to be all coming from one side.Leftists said if Trump won, that there’d be violent mobs of hate, and intolerant fascists would try to silence those with whom they disagree. And they were right. It just was by a group of people from which they didn’t expect it: themselves.What is happening, in the larger sense? Historians will study this election and our times as unique, but what seems to be unfolding in politics and America overall is stunning not only in its scope, but hypocrisy.The “othering” of a group of people
They said that if Trump won, that groups of people would be identified and persecuted. And again, they were right. There is now a movement to identify anyone who supported the current president as an an extremist, which is kind of hard to do when he won the Electoral College by 70 votes, which means his support is hardly extreme and maybe, you know, mainstream.
Labels: liberal fascism
One of the great things about being a pundit is that they don’t dock your pay for being wrong.
Headline thanks to Glenn Reynolds.
Comments by Matthew Continetti
"Republicans seized her microphone," writes the New York Times. "And gave her a megaphone."Who's she? Elizabeth Warren, the overrated Democratic senator from Massachusetts. The other night Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell rebuked her for impugning colleague Jeff Sessions. Exercising a little-known rule, the Senate revoked Warren's floor privileges for 24 hours. Now, says the Times, "Ms. Warren is considered a very early frontrunner for 2020, should she run."I'm sorry. I just can't. We are three weeks into the presidency of Donald J. Trump, the most unusual and unconventional man to inhabit the White House in a century, possibly ever, and the New York Times is already naming the frontrunner to replace him? The same media and consultant class that assumed Hillary Clinton would win the presidency in 2008 and again in 2016 presumes to declare how a Senate kerfuffle in February 2017 will affect Iowa caucus-goers in 2020? Who are these people? Where did they come from? What makes them so obtuse, so beholden to gossip, so given to wish-casting, so certain that their momentary impressions of trivial matters carry cosmic weight? Was it college that inflated their sense of self-worth? Is that what $50k a year buys you—a degree in smug? We may never know.Let me make a confession. I have no idea who the Democratic nominee will be in 2020. Nor am I completely sure, since we are being honest, who the Republican nominee will be. (Trump, I guess?) McConnell's decision to cut off Warren may have been a disaster of epic proportions for the GOP. Or it could have been a brilliant strategic move, elevating an unlikable Massachusetts liberal to the top of her party. McConnell himself is probably ambivalent.I do suspect, however, that if Harry Reid had cut off Ted Cruz's microphone in 2013 the Nevada Democrat would have been hailed as a hero and genius. Even so: The shoe-on-the-other-foot argument may not count for much any more. Nothing may count for much any more. If the last year and a half has taught us anything, it is that what we think is supposed to happen does not. Brexit was not supposed to happen. Trump was not supposed to happen. The Patriots' comeback was not supposed to happen. Yet here we are.And no one seems to be drawing lessons from any of this. I open Twitter and see the very people who were convinced Trump wouldn't win the Republican nomination, who were convinced he'd lose the general election, immediately embrace the most negative interpretation of anything Trump says or does, of any event that might impact him in the slightest. They may well be right. But they just as easily may be wrong, as they have been, consistently, for some time. A modicum of humility and skepticism would go a long way. I understand that these qualities are not especially useful in a city of careerists and poseurs and pseuds. But why not give them a whirl nonetheless.
Saturday, February 11, 2017
DARVO (Deny, Attack, Reverse Victim and Offender)
Words mean things. Facts matter. When young Democrats dishonestly label their opponents “Nazis” and incite violence as a tactic to prevent the president’s supporters from speaking, we are witnessing an attempt to redefine reality by the abuse of language.
Some conservatives have criticized Milo Yiannopoulos for his deliberate use of insulting language as if this were the reason the Left is rioting in its attempts to silence him. Yet does anyone suppose that if I were to submit this little article to the Daily Californian, they would publish it? Don’t be absurd. You see I use no slurs here, but that’s not what really offends them. They are offended by the truth — facts are “hate” and dissent is “harassment,” according to 21st-century Third Wave feminists.
In which a "piece of meat" gets called out for what her boyfriend calls her.
Academics really want the promises of Communism. That's why they lie about the actual practices of Communism. Despite a century of actual experience.
This is where the New Nazis get their ideas.
One of the biggest problems with mainstream liberalism is its fetish for abstract principle over material reality. It is prone to forgetting that in a democracy, principles exist as a means to an end: the guarantee of maximal rights and liberties for the greatest number of people.
This is the ideology that allows you ... no it demands ... that the people standing in the way of your goals need to die. Hitler did it, Stalin did it, Mao did it. It's social justice.
Saudi Arabia has expelled 39,000 Pakistanis in the past four months amid what it says is a crackdown on terrorism, according to the Saudi Gazette.
Most deportations were for standard visa violations, reported the English-language daily newspaper, published in Jedda. However, officials were also reacting to concern over a number of terrorist attacks, it said.
Saudi Muslims must be Islamophobes.