45 thoughts on “News/Politics 7-28-18

  1. Kristol may take the word of a deep state NSA lawyer, most never-Trumpers would.

    The rest of us? Not so much. The NSA has repeatedly (and in some cases illegally) spied on US citizens since it’s inception. Of course she’ll defend the practice. But until it’s redacted, we have no idea if what she says is true, it’s just her opinion, which as I already noted, isn’t worth much.

    I trust her and the NSA about as much as Comey and Brennan, which is not at all.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. And here’s an example why I don’t.

    Not an opinion in the Weekly Standard, but under oath.


    “The testimony starts :55 minutes into the YouTube link of the hearing below. If you’re interested in the questions about the government computer intrusion, you can scroll to 1:37:30 and 1:57:45.

    The Justice Department continues to use taxpayer money to fight my lawsuit against the FBI and others, rather than learning who is responsible for the improper remote intrusions into my computers.”

    Even here, they stonewall and hide the truth.


    Here’s the video testimony. You have to skip ahead to 1:37:30


  3. “What we (the media) have learned since Trump’s election”


    “Eighteen tumultuous months into the Trump presidency, there’s one thing we’ve learned about the media.

    For all our hand wringing over how badly we missed the forecast on Donald Trump’s electability; for all the self-flagellation over obvious signs conveniently ignored; for all of our admissions that we’d gotten so stuck in our own echo chamber, we couldn’t see what was before our eyes; for all of our pledges to re-examine the way we report, seeking to peer outside the DC-New York City bubble; for our promises to listen rather than preach and to report rather than tell people what to think— we didn’t mean it.”

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Good. Maybe this will stop Democrat politicians from ordering the police to stand down while Trump supporters are assaulted. The 9th Circuit gets it right for a change,


    “Court: Trump Supporters Can Sue San Jose Over Mob Attack Outside 2016 Campaign Rally

    Police failed to protect rally attendees from a violent anti-Trump mob: “Someone needs to be held accountable for it””

    “The people who were attacked claimed the police failed to protect rally attendees. Now a court has ruled that they can move forward with a lawsuit against the city.

    Kartikay Mehrotra reports at Bloomberg:

    Trump Supporters Can Proceed With Lawsuit Over San Jose Violence

    Supporters of Donald Trump attacked during a presidential campaign rally in 2016 won a ruling allowing them to proceed with a lawsuit against the city of San Jose, California, over claims that police failed to protect them from violence.

    Protests in June 2016 in downtown San Jose quickly devolved into a bloody scene when demonstrators outside the rally venue attacked the president’s supporters, pelting them with eggs and water balloons before punching them and snatching their “Make America Great Again” caps and setting them ablaze.

    A federal appeals court in San Francisco on Friday upheld a lower-court ruling rejecting the city’s claim of immunity to allegations that officers blocked Trump supporters from escaping an area where anti-Trump protesters became violent.

    Melanie Woodrow of ABC 7 News has more:

    Court sides with President Trump supporters in riot civil rights lawsuit.”


  5. We have known for a while that this would be the Asian Century. As the US retreats and repeatedly damages its own reputation, it becomes more likely that this will be the Chinese Century.


  6. Looks like Twitter will have to answer for shadow banning conservatives. And note never-Trumpers are left alone, it’s only those who support the President, Gaetz, Nunes, Jordan, and Meadows that had the problem.


  7. No. That wasn’t what happened.


  8. It’s been the Asian Century for quite a few years already. Since we have provided China with all of our technology, factories and market access, one would have to be seriously deluded to believe that they wouldn’t make it their own and use it against us. But I’m sure the Neo-Con, Never-Trump wing of the Republican party and the Democrat establishment will devise a convenient war to distract and unite us before too long. I just listened to a snippet (all I could take) of Jay Sekulow on the radio beating his war drum and drawing a bullseye on Iran. I only hope Trump avoids that colossal trap, as any such unnecessary war will seriously damage his usefulness to his domestically focused supporters.


  9. Historians will write that the American Century ended in three acts:

    1. Little Bush’s invasion of Iraq and the chaos it created for the next 15 years in many other countries led the rest of the world to seriously question the foreign policy judgment of US leaders.

    2. The Subprime Mortgage Crisis of 2007-2009 had dangerously negative effects on the economy of the entire world and led the rest of the world to seriously question the economic judgment of US leaders.

    3. The election of Trump, his economic illiteracy, his embrace of dictators like Putin, Xi and Kim, his attacks on longtime allies, his rejection of continuing US leadership on trade and foreign policy and his constant dishonesty, ignorance and buffoonery has led the rest of the world to regard Trump as a laughingstock and Americans as selfish, decadent ignoramuses who can be conned by such a ridiculous demagogue.


  10. I always thought House Democrats would face a dilemma if they win back control of the House in November:

    1. Follow their hearts and move to impeach Trump based on whatever Mueller reports or folks like Schiff can discover; or

    2. Leave Trump in office so they can run against him in 2020 and possibly consolidate their 2018 gains.

    I think Helsinki changed all that. The majority of Democrats (and certainly the vast majority of House Democrats) now think Ttump is an actual traitor, a willing stooge of Putin, and a clear and present danger to the country.

    I think Trump understands what is at stake for him in November. That is why he is promising to campaign for vulnerable House Republicans. Ironically, the best things he could do for those Republicans would be to:

    1.Declare victory in the Trade War and repeal all of his tariffs; and

    2. Be very quiet for 3 months.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. We should certainly learn from China how establish a solid reputation. Their care for human rights and dignity, not to mention their great regard for the law and the divine Lawgiver, make them a nation to emulate in every way in the 2000s.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. It is sad that we are giving up world leadership to the Chinese, particularly to those (American and otherwise) who remember the best parts of The American Century. All three acts of the American decline set forth @1:55 were important in placing China in its current position.


  13. AJ raised some interesting points yesterday about Pete Sessions:


    A couple things on your Sessions link..

    Did he think there’d be no consequences for fighting the will of R voters and not backing the President? Traitors usually pay a price.

    “But the Texas congressman pointedly declined to say whether he’d campaign as an ally of the president, who narrowly lost Sessions’ North Dallas district in 2016.”

    Did he think this type of R was making a comeback? Did he think this is where the party is currently at?

    “And he appeared to concede that some in the business-friendly area — which is home to a number of prominent country club-style Republicans, including former President George W. Bush — have soured on the bombastic commander in chief.”

    Did he or his country club type supporters disillusioned with Trump really think it would turn out any other way when they allowed themselves to be persuaded to ally with Dems, as some clearly have?

    “But Allred hinted at another strategy: Winning over traditional Republicans who felt disillusioned with the president.

    “I think if you are a George W. Bush Republican, you don’t see yourself in this version of the Republican Party led by Donald Trump,””

    If he loses, and I doubt he will, it’ll be of his own making. You guys wanna blame Trump, but Sessions built this all by himself.”

    I am somewhat familiar with Sessions, his district and his voting record. Here are a few facts:

    1. Sessions’ district does have country club Republicans like Little Bush, but it also has a bunch of Democrats. He defeated an eleven term Democrat in a very tough race in 1996.

    2. Sessions has held that seat for 22 years not by moving to the left to woo the Dems, but by being an effective conservative. His lifetime score from the American Conservative Union is 95, one of the very best in Congress.

    3. He was battling Clinton and Obama while Trump was donating to Pelosi, Hillary and Schumer, sexually assaulting women and running a fake university.

    4. AJ called Sessions a “traitor”, not because of any lack of conservatism on the part of Sessions, but because Sessions refused to identify himself as a Trumpkin.

    This is why many conservatives consider Trumpism to be a cult.


  14. Solar P has now raised another interesting point. So here are a few of the actions of the US in the last 100 years which I believe established 1917-2017 as The American Century:

    1. Intervening decisively in World War I.
    2. Being at the forefront in technological innovation during that entire century.
    3. Defeating Imperial Japan and helping to defeat Nazi Germany.
    4. Being at the forefront in the creation of the UN, the IMF and the World Bank.
    5. Rebuilding Europe economically via The Marshall Plan.
    6. Creating NATO to protect Europe from communism and protecting large areas of Asia, Africa and the Western Hemisphere from communism.
    7. In the Reagan years, providing a model of economic growth for the world with deregulation, free trade, tax reform and the rule of law.
    8. Imperfectly, but steadily being a leader in the area of human rights.
    9. Sending Christian missionaries around the world.
    10. Sending billions of dollars of aid to the poor around the world when poverty, disease or disaster struck.
    11. Defeating international communism and taking the lead in the incorporation of Eastern Europe into the Western Alliance.
    12. Establishing international rules for trade that have led to an explosion of trade and lifted about 2 billion people out of extreme poverty.

    During this time it was always critical that the free world respected the judgment of US leaders on economic and foreign policy matters. It was also important that the US was seen as reasonably dependable and that its people were seen as reasonably intelligent.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Yeah, yeah…. we know….

    Repent! The end is nigh!

    Same crap, different day. Seriously, some new material would be nice.


  16. Like it wouldn’t be hard to create a list of counter-examples and (contra-China) how China isn’t doing anything like this to make it its century, etc….. Not really not interested in getting into this with someone whose only goal here is to antagonize, but I understand your point.


  17. They can’t keep the story straight.


    “There has been bitter debate about the release of a heavily-redacted version of the FBI’s application for a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrant to wiretap onetime Trump foreign policy adviser Carter Page. The debate centers on whether the FBI gave the FISA court judges enough information to assess the anti-Trump motives of the people behind the Steele dossier.

    House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes, R-Calif., set off the argument last February, with the release of the so-called Nunes memo. In the memo, Nunes wrote, “Neither the initial application in October 2016, nor any of the renewals, disclose or reference the role of the DNC, Clinton campaign, or any party/campaign in funding Steele’s efforts.”

    The release last weekend of blacked-out copies of the original application and three renewals confirmed Nunes’ description; the documents did not mention the DNC or Clinton campaign’s role in funding Steele. Nevertheless, defenders of the FBI’s actions in this case argued that even if the FBI did not specifically include the words “Clinton campaign” or “DNC,” the bureau fully informed the court that the people involved with the dossier had a political motive against candidate Donald Trump. To support their position, defenders pointed to a multi-paragraph footnote in the FISA application that contained this sentence: “The FBI speculates that the identified U.S. person was likely looking for information that could be used to discredit Candidate #1’s campaign.”

    The “identified U.S. person” referred to Glenn Simpson, the Fusion GPS opposition researcher who recruited former British spy Christopher Steele to search for Russia-related dirt on Trump, who is referred to as “Candidate #1” in the application.

    “The FBI gave the court enough information to evaluate Steele’s credibility,” former Justice Department official David Kris wrote on Lawfare. “The footnote disclosing Steele’s possible bias takes up more than a full page in the applications, so there is literally no way the FISA court could have missed it.”

    But the footnote did not, in fact, disclose Steele’s possible bias. It disclosed Simpson’s possible bias. The FBI’s disclosure of bias — “The FBI speculates” — referred specifically to the “identified U.S. person” who might have wanted to discredit the Trump campaign. That was Simpson, not Steele.

    Indeed, a close reading of both the FISA application and the Nunes memo raises questions about whether the FBI told the judges anything about Steele’s possible bias — even though the bureau had evidence that the former spy was out to get Trump.

    In the initial and later applications, the FBI did not even hint that Steele, referred to as “Source #1” in the application, was biased against Trump. In fact, on more than one occasion, the FBI presented Steele, who had worked with the FBI in the world soccer corruption investigation a few years earlier, as a reliable source with no marks against his credibility.

    “Source #1’s reporting has been corroborated and used in criminal proceedings and the FBI assesses Source #1 to be reliable,” the FBI wrote. “Source #1 has been compensated [REDACTED] by the FBI and the FBI is unaware of any derogatory information pertaining to Source #1.”

    In another part of the footnote, the FBI said Simpson “never advised Source #1 as to the motivation behind the research into Candidate #1’s ties to Russia,” suggesting Steele had no idea that his employers were trying to stop Trump.

    In yet another part of the footnote, the bureau said “the FBI believes Source #1’s reporting herein to be credible.”

    The problem for the FBI is this: The initial FISA application containing those footnotes was filed in October 2016. In the previous month, September, Steele told Justice Department official Bruce Ohr that he, Steele, was “desperate that Donald Trump not get elected and was passionate about him not being president,” according to Ohr’s account quoted in the Nunes memo. At the time of applying for the warrant, the Justice Department knew about Steele’s “desperate” and “passionate” anti-Trumpism, but did not tell the court.”

    Liked by 1 person

  18. “Same crap, different day. Seriously, some new material would be nice”, says AJ @ 5:45.

    Two minutes later, he posts his 173rd post attacking the Carter Page FISA Applications despite never being able to ever identify a single false accusation in the 400+ pages of the applications.


  19. All accusations in the FISA application based on the Dossier are invalid and assumed false by default, unless proven true by other means. Yawn. I am tired of repeating myself too, so I’m on to more important things…

    Now that the American Century is over, perhaps our country can begin to think about articulating a public policy that is based on more than crass materialism and the ungodly gain of a few gambler/traders here at home,and the destruction of traditional ways of life at home and abroad. I do not know that Trump himself is going to be much help there. His purpose, as I see it, has been to convince the elite here that their free ride is indeed over and they must now treat the country like an actual country rather than a pawn for multinational global interests. Since it will probably take more time for this lesson to really sink in, I am prepared to give Trump another term. But I am also hoping that people who think seriously will be sharing ideas on a constructive way forward. There are already small signs that this is beginning to happen.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Debra, You packed a lot into 6:29:

    1. Since The Trump Cult can’t identify any allegations in the 400+ pages of the Page FISA App that are actually false, it insists on assuming that all the allegations are false. Yes, I understand that is what the Cult has been doing.

    2. The ideological Trumpkins believe that the top 20% of US taxpayers who have been funding the entire federal government (21% – 50% only pay enough to cover the earned income credits (welfare) of the bottom 50%) have been getting a “free ride”. The National Association of Globalists hereby invites all Trumpkins and Democrats to join us in that “free ride”.

    3. Here is a person who shares your worldview and would like to work with you “on a constructive way forward”. She also dislikes the elite and wants to raise their taxes. Like Trump, she is economically illiterate. Thanks to Trump, she and others like her may soon be running the country.



  21. In China, they fly in suits all the time, *including a tie,* (if I may be so bold), and never even turn on their phones in a place as sacrosanct as an *American airport (praise be to its name)*!


  22. Or, Trump Jr. is the guy who paid for his own upgrade, and they load first in number order when called. You know, like happens about ten thousand times a day on flights world-wide.

    You guys are sad. Pathetic really.


  23. Meanwhile, in matters adults actually care about…..


    “Gross domestic product, or GDP, is the measure of choice when assessing the health of any economy, especially in the United States. GDP, which is measured at annual rates, includes the value of production of all goods and services produced in a country. In the one year since President Trump took office, the first quarter of 2017 through the first quarter of 2018, real GDP grew at a 2.55 percent annual rate. This is higher than the growth for six of the eight years former President Obama was in office, or even five of the eight years when former President George W. Bush was in office.

    Moreover, the economic growth rate in the first year of Trump in office is higher than the average annual growth rate for the entire presidencies of both Obama at 2.05 percent and Bush at 1.71 percent. For the full 65 years from the first quarter of 1953 through the first quarter of 2018, annual real GDP growth in the United States averaged 2.95 percent, which is still substantially higher than the first year under Trump.”


  24. It is interesting to be reminded about how William F. Buckley, William Rusher, George Will and the other writers at and readers of National Review reacted to Nixon and the Watergate scandal. Will has changed little in 46 years. I had dismissed Nixon as too liberal by 1972, but like Rusher was sympathetic to Nixon whenever he was attacked by liberal Democrats.


  25. Face. Palm.


    “Members of Congress should be able to work together to protect houses of worship from having to pay taxes, especially in an election year when both parties want to earn the faith community’s vote.

    In an era of pervasive partisan politics, however, not even that is a guarantee.

    Some Republicans do want to tweak a portion of their 2017 tax bill that will now force nonprofits, including churches, to pay a 21 percent tax on the value of certain employee benefits. But most others downplay the problem or deny it needs to be addressed.

    Assistant House Minority Leader Jim Clyburn of South Carolina is rallying Democrats around new legislation to repeal the provision.

    But he can’t do it without help from Republicans, and calling their tax bill the “GOP tax scam” isn’t going to win over lawmakers who are fiercely protective of this congressional session’s biggest legislative achievement.

    “(Democrats and Republicans) are describing the problem in very different ways,” said Galen Carey, vice president of government relations for the National Association of Evangelicals. “One side is saying ‘this is an oversight,’ the other is calling it Republicans’ war on religion … overheated rhetoric probably won’t help us get a solution.”

    Short of legislative action, a public relations nightmare could be awaiting lawmakers who voted for the tax bill back home.

    “This is an issue that will not go away,” said Dan Busby, president of the Evangelical Council for Fiscal Accountability. “When you stir up 100,000 houses of worship, and then hundreds of thousands of nonprofits on top of that, you have a pretty mighty force that is going to get attention on this issue.””

    Sad that the drama queens still gotta drama……


  26. The purge of Austin and it’s history begins……..


    “Known as both the “father of Texas” and the namesake of the state’s capital, Stephen F. Austin carved out the early outlines of Texas among his many accomplishments.
    He also opposed an attempt by Mexico to ban slavery in the province of Tejas and said if slaves were freed, they would turn into “vagabonds, a nuisance and a menace.”

    For that reason, the city of Austin’s Equity Office suggested renaming the city in a report about existing Confederate monuments that was published this week.

    Also on the list of locales to possibly be renamed: Pease Park, the Bouldin Creek neighborhood, Barton Springs and 10 streets named for William Barton, the “Daniel Boone of Texas,” who was a slave owner.

    To be sure, the identified streets and parks are only suggested for reconsideration. And the city, Bouldin Creek, Pease Park and the Barton-related landmarks — a group that includes Barton Springs — were included in a lower-tier list of “assets for secondary review” in the report. Still, the report did identify several streets staff consider related to the Confederacy and worthy of more immediate action. Those streets are:

    • Littlefield Street

    • Tom Green Street

    • Sneed Cove

    • Reagan Hill Drive

    • Dixie Drive

    • Confederate Avenue

    • Plantation Road”

    I’m sure the Dems in charge of the city will name it something more appropriate.

    Like Obamaville…….

    Or North Mexico…….

    You know, something more reflective of what it’s become, not what it was.

    Liked by 2 people

  27. This is sort of the video version to yesterday’s 5:39 post.


  28. AJ @9:37, One of the changes that has negatively affected the country over the last 50 years has been the release of the mentally ill from institutions. In Texas, we have dealt with that situation by creating a city (Austin) that attracts and retains the vast majority of our mentally ill.

    I think Reagan may have tried the same thing with San Francisco in the 1960s. Alas, the city was not geographically large enough to accomplish its purpose. Fortunately, Austin is not located on a peninsula and can be expanded to accommodate more inmates/residents as the need arises.

    Liked by 1 person

  29. Kevin D. Williamson distills a whole week of high school economics into one easy to understand column.


  30. One of my friends on FB succinctly pointed out why our politicians were voted out of office and/or are disliked.

    “When you’re fleeing for your life from a fire you don’t {*#%]*[¥ care about plastic straws.”

    Liked by 3 people

  31. Aj: July 28, 5:47pm

    They can’t keep their story straight because they knew what the result would be had they done so. Just like they knew what the result would be if they had said “candidate #2” paid for the dossier.


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