42 thoughts on “News/Politics 10-30-18

  1. I have come to this thread off and on just to see what is happening. I don’t like the tone I find here. Somehow the love of Christ is missing. It is okay to disagree over politics, but let’s not put each other down for our politics. We are beginning to reflect our culture, but this is not our home.

    Liked by 7 people

  2. And with that in mind…..

    Shut. It. Down.


    “Special counsel Robert Mueller is churning in uncharted legal waters as he tries to nail a Russian firm for bankrolling Moscow’s deceptive social media invasion into the 2016 election.

    It is not only Concord Management and Consulting LLC’s attorney saying this. Defense attorney Eric Dubelier said in court that Mr. Mueller created a “make-believe crime” and that the “real Justice Department” would never have brought such an indictment.

    U.S. District Judge Dabney L. Friedrich also is expressing doubts about Mr. Mueller’s unique prosecutorial adventure, though she is not saying she will dismiss the charges, as Mr. Dubelier has requested.

    A review of the transcript of an Oct. 15 hearing shows the judge’s reservations. She said of Mr. Mueller’s team, “They’ve got a heavy burden at trial to prove that knowledge.” She was referring to awareness that Concord knowingly defrauded the Federal Election Commission, the Justice Department and the State Department.

    “I will give you, Mr. Dubelier, this is an unprecedented case, for sure,” the judge said.

    The attorney had argued that there is no specific federal law against interfering in a U.S. election. He said there are no previous prosecutions on defrauding the FEC by using fake social media personas.

    “And I agree, at trial, if this case survives, they’re going to have to show that Concord and others conspired and had the specific intent to defraud,” Judge Friedrich said.

    When prosecutor Jonathan I. Kravis argued that Concord is aware that the U.S. enforces election regulations, Judge Friedrich said, “It’s hard to see how not revealing identities at political rallies and not revealing identities on social media, how that is evidence of intent to interfere with a U.S. government function as opposed to confuse voters.”

    Mr. Mueller brought the indictment in February against Concord, as well as a Russian trolling farm company and various Russian operatives.

    The indictment is one of two against Russian entities that together stand as Mr. Mueller’s showcase prosecution in the Justice Department’s 27-month investigation into supposed Trump-Russia collusion. He has yet to charge a Trump associate with election interference.”

    Because he has no case, and zero evidence of wrong doing by Trump.


  3. Surprising?

    Not really.


    “You may have thought it was just a couple of oddballs and a blip on the radar when some modern-day witches decided to cast a hex on Brett Kavanaugh. (I guess they didn’t use enough eye of newt in that effort since he’s now on the SCOTUS bench.) But it turns out that that wasn’t some niche effort. A new report at Marketwatch reveals that an increasing number of younger people (we’re looking at you again, millennials) are rejecting organized, traditional religion in favor of the divinations of astrologers and witches casting spells.

    More than half of young adults in the U.S. believe astrology is a science. compared to less than 8% of the Chinese public. The psychic services industry — which includes astrology, aura reading, mediumship, tarot-card reading and palmistry, among other metaphysical services — grew 2% between 2011 and 2016. It is now worth $2 billion annually, according to industry analysis firm IBIS World.

    Melissa Jayne, owner of Brooklyn-based “metaphysical boutique” Catland, said she has seen a major uptick in interest in the occult in the past five years, especially among New Yorkers in their 20s. The store offers workshops like “Witchcraft 101,” “Astrology 101,” and a “Spirit Seance.”

    “Whether it be spell-casting, tarot, astrology, meditation and trance, or herbalism, these traditions offer tangible ways for people to enact change in their lives,” she said.

    Yes, the “Catland” referenced in this article is the same one that hosted the Kavanaugh hexing and seems to be the northeastern epicenter of this movement. It’s been building for a while now, however, and it’s not limited to the Big Apple. Back in January, John covered a story describing the growing ranks of “young American women who have been drawn to witchcraft as a sign of feminism and community building.”

    Sure, some of them may just be dabbling in these things as an exercise in finding a new way to express their feminist ideals and resistance to the President. But in many of the cases detailed in the report, we’re talking about people who take their witchcraft seriously. I regularly listen to a few podcasts on paranormal subjects, not politics, and the hosts tend to be almost uniformly liberal. (Some of them regularly veer off topic to bemoan how horrible the world is since the 2016 elections and, frankly, I just consider that a bonus in terms of entertainment.) But when they talk about spells and other witch-related subjects, they’re not joking around. Some of them regularly burn sage in their homes and offices to cleanse the areas of negative influences. There’s a thriving market for books, crystals and other witch paraphernalia.”

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Now about that roving band of invaders……


    “Now we know what the equipment will do. Rather than send 800 troops to the southern border, as reported last week, the Trump administration plans to deploy 5,000 troops to help secure it as multiple migrant “caravans” from Central America approach it. The Wall Street Journal reports that the deployment even has a mission name — “Operation Faithful Patriot”:

    The U.S. military plans to deploy 5,000 troops to the southwest U.S. border in anticipation of a caravan of would-be asylum seekers and migrants currently moving northward in Mexico, U.S. officials said Monday.

    The new figure is a major increase from initial estimates of 800 troops and would represent a military force equal to about one-third the number of customs officials currently working at the border. The military sent about 2,000 National Guard troops to the area earlier this year.

    The U.S. and federal law-enforcement officials said troops are likely to be deployed to ports of entry, at least in initial phases of the U.S. military mission, which the Pentagon has named Operation Faithful Patriot.”


  5. While Dems have been campaigning and blaming Trump for all that is wrong in the world, Senate R’s have been busy working. 🙂


    “Senate Judiciary Committee holds nominee hearings during recess, and Dems are @#$%$#

    For all the Democrat complaining, no one is stopping them from attending and asking questions.”

    “You may recall that just after Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation, Democrats agreed to confirm 15 federal judicial nominees in exchange for Mitch McConnell putting the Senate in recess so that vulnerable Senate Dems could return home to campaign.

    #TheResistance was upset. While they can’t stop nominees, they demand resistance for resistance sake. But Senate Democrats had other priorities.

    So Senate recess was a time for Republicans to halt the judicial confirmation train from rollin’ down the tracks?


    Before you can get to a floor vote, you need a Committee vote. And before you can get a Committee vote, you need a Committee hearing.

    So, the Senate Judiciary Committee has continued to hold hearings on nominees. lining up more Committee votes for just after the midterms.

    Nina Totenberg at NRP writes, Trump, Republicans Continue Remaking The Federal Courts — Even As Senate On Recess:

    … And now, for the first time, the Senate Judiciary Committee is holding confirmation hearings during a Senate recess, over the objections of the minority party.

    No other Senate committee has been holding hearings during the current recess. But for judicial nominees, the Senate confirmation train keeps on running — even though, and likely because, Senate Democrats can’t be there. The Democrats and allied independents are defending 26 seats in next month’s elections and have to campaign during the final weeks before the midterms.

    This week, just two senators — Republicans Orrin Hatch of Utah, who is retiring, and Mike Crapo of Idaho — showed up at the hearing for two appeals court nominees. The senators excused the nominees after just 19 minutes, several minutes of which were consumed by one controversial nominee talking about his wife, parents, children and even his cat.

    Hatch, who chaired the Judiciary Committee for eight years, never held a recess hearing for a federal judge nominee. When asked this week why Republicans went ahead this time, he said, “We have to move ahead, and if they’re not cooperating, you just go ahead.”

    Jennifer Bendery at Huff Po notes that Democrats may have shot themselves in the foot by agreeing to these dates before they knew there would be a recess, Senate’s Out? Nobody’s Around? Perfect Time To Advance Trump’s Court Picks, Says GOP.:”.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Revenge of the Normals…….

    Where it hurts most, at the ballot box.


    “You know, there’s nothing that Normal Americans can identify with more than a guy living in a Ford panel van covered with Trump memes and soccer manifestoes who sends bombs that don’t work to Democrats who support policies that don’t work. Likewise, Normal people totally identify with – let me get the liberal narrative du jour right here – a Trump-hating freak who shoots up a synagogue. And I think it’s a terrific midterm strategy for our Democrat friends is to keep making that idiotic case. (extreme sarcasm for the benefit of the willfully obtuse)

    The Official Media is in a frenzy explaining how Donald Trump personally instructed Kooky Weirdo de Florida to mail pipe bombs to washed up Dem hacks and that nameless garbage being in Pittsburgh via a series of cunningly encrypted dog whistles. “Make America Great Again” is apparently code for “Mail bombs!” Nothing says “Murder Jews” like moving the embassy to Jerusalem and ending the Iran deal.

    Oddly, of 63 million Trump voters, only one jerk managed to decode this cipher. The other hated Trump for liking Jews too much. But, as CNNMSNBC’s brain trust and such thinkers as rock legend Joe Scarborough teach us, their crimes are on all of us anyway for some reason.

    We’re all to blame for one kook’s real terrorism because…well, he thought Trump was part of the giant Zionist conspiracy to make him a friendless loser, so it’s not clear why. Maybe it being a useful lie is reason enough.

    We’re also to blame for the other idiot’s pantomime terrorism pursuant to the dippy moral calculus proposed by the same peeps who spent eight years slobbering over the protege of Bill Freaking Ayers. Ayers, as you would never know from watching our media, was a leader in an actual campaign of political bombings that actually maimed and killed actual people. So, when libs feigned shock at those raising the possibility that leftists might be responsible for doing something leftists had a history of doing (as well as a history of faking hate crimes where they were the victims) at a politically convenient time, the faux outrage rang hollow.

    And how faux the outrage was – and so very selective too. Leftists demand you ignore the near-miss massacres at the Family Research Council and the baseball field by committed leftists who were not any crazier than their political allies, only more proactive. The message is that you Normal Americans are complicit for voting for a guy who doesn’t hate your guts.

    I think that on November 6th, the Democrats are going to get a message back from the people they are shamelessly lying about.

    Normal voters are not going to look at this blood libel and say, “Yeah, I feel personally responsible for the actions of that Elizabeth Warren-channeling fake Indian stripper guy with a kilometer-long rap sheet who totally would not have done anything nutty if it weren’t for Trump. And also for the crimes of a scuzzy coward who hates Trump. I guess I have a moral obligation vote for people who will ruin this surging economy, restore America to its rightful place as a laughingstock on the world stage, and attack my rights of free speech, free exercise of religion, and to keep and bear arms to protect myself from exactly these kind of aspiring Stalins. Because that idea makes sense. I’m convinced.”

    I think Normal people are going to be furious at these lies. I think they see how liberals and their water-carrying Fredocon lickspittles are making a desperate play to stop the Republicans’ momentum going into the election. And it is not like the Liberals have had a really good sense of what issues to glom on to lately. They thought crucifying Brett Kavanagh with false claims was going to stir up a blue wave. The electorate turned towards the Republicans. They thought that a caravan of greedy foreigners coming north to cash in on our welfare state was going to do it. The electorate turned towards Republicans even harder. Gee, what to do? It’s not like they can run on their crappy policies…

    Oh, here’s a great idea. Let’s tell Republican voters that they are personally responsible for the actions of some fruitcake nimrod who looks like he’s on a day-pass from the mid-1990s WWE and another loser who sounds like a Goebbels fever dream. Good plan, if you’ve never met a Normal person.”


  7. This will shock no one….


    “New Evidence Suggests Planned Parenthood Lied To Congress About Aborted Baby Part Profits

    The Center for Medical Progress submitted evidence to a federal judge to back up a new accusation Planned Parenthood may have lied to Congress.”

    “In 2016, Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley referred Planned Parenthood to the FBI for investigation following PP’s testimony in front of Congress. CMP asserts the reason for that might be that Planned Parenthood fabricated key information it submitted to Congress.

    After years of footwork and lawsuits, CMP has asked the judge in California to force Planned Parenthood and their suspect business partner, Advanced Bioscience Resources (ABR), to produce the original records from their baby body parts harvesting programs. As a result of CMP’s undercover work, ABR is also now also under federal investigation for working with Planned Parenthood to procure aborted baby body parts, which the company sold to government-funded researchers.

    In the last few weeks, CMP has helped make public the fact that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) had a hefty contract with ABR. As a result, in late September, HHS announced that it had terminated the contract because they were “not sufficiently assured that the contract included the appropriate protections applicable to fetal tissue research or met all other procurement requirements.”

    Still, all of these inappropriate business relationships led CMP to continue digging. What they found was disturbing, to say the least. ABR is currently under CMP’s filing with the court. Based on sealed documents reflecting Planned Parenthood’s invoices for payment for aborted baby parts, both ABR and Planned Parenthood produced what purported to be the same set of invoices, “but they produced different versions of the same invoice,” CMP states.

    Additionally, “the revenue totals and procurement totals” for fetal body parts “do not match” the totals that Planned Parenthood reported to congressional investigations years ago. The filing asks the court “to verify that [Planned Parenthood] are not producing fabricated evidence.” In a statement, CMP’s project lead David Daleiden said,

    The glaring discrepancies in Planned Parenthood’s alleged documentation of their baby body parts revenues call into question every statement Planned Parenthood has ever made in defense of their abortion harvesting programs. This would not be the first time Planned Parenthood has apparently doctored critical evidence about their own wrongdoing … It is imperative for prosecutors to seize the original financial records from Planned Parenthood and their accomplices immediately, so these depraved enterprises cannot continue to cover up their criminal sale of baby body parts.”

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Peter, the comments on that article in 7:23 are better than the article itself. They have an honest, peaceful discussion. For example, someone points out that it’s a bit odd to say “enemy of the people” is way, way over the top when the writer himself regularly calls the left “diabolical.” It’s OK to suggest that someone’s interests are satanic (if words really mean something), but not to use the word “enemy”? Someone writes a comment and finishes it with “So tell me Rod and others, what is worse: to be called an enemy of the people or to be treated as such?”

    Here’s a comment from the comment section: “Well one just had to look at how the news media handled the Kavanaugh accusations, the ricin vs. “pipe bomb” mailings, giving debate questions to Hillary, ect, and even going back to ABC withholding the Juanita Broadrick interview until after the impeachment hearings to know that they are your enemy if you are the right of Hillary Clinton. How should we refer to them? Rod, and any other orthodox Christians reading this: the people in the media hate you. They might occasionally quote you when you are critical of Trump or the GOP, but they will have no problem throwing you to the side and impeding on your religious liberty when they get in power.”

    I think “the REAL enemy of the people” was exaggeration. But is “enemy of the people” over-the-top? Not at all.

    Liked by 3 people

  9. Here’s another: “Oh, come on. We have had two years of non stop anti Trump screaming from a media that tried their best to overturn an election by screaming and treating as real any fake story about Trump. I dislike Trump very much. The man is a clown. But the media has been WORSE and they have been trying to create sometihng evil in our society – they have attempted to be a mob unto themselves, screaming incoherent creatures who spend all day long mindlessly trying to slam Trump. They are the problem in our democracy. Trump is the reaaction to a media that was a Communist style Pravda for Obama, telling us that anything the Dear Leader did was Holy. Trump is merely telling the truth.”

    Liked by 3 people

  10. @6:51 “I think that on November 6th, the Democrats are going to get a message back from the people they are shamelessly lying about.”

    I think so AJ. And so are Never-Trump Republicans. ;–)

    Liked by 1 person

  11. AJ, I saw the trick or treat candy you linked on yesterday’s thread. The winners candy will be much better than that, but I would like to get some of the Presidential candy as a consolation prize for Ricky, as I still think he’s going to have to make another trip to Gatlinburg to get the good stuff. ;–)


  12. Debra, remind me what this bet was? Was it whether the mid-term elections support Trump? If so, what numbers was the bet based on?


  13. I’m about halfway through a book that could probably be usefully read by everyone on this thread, several years old but at least as relevant as when it was written: How the News Makes Us Dumb. The thesis is that the whole idea of daily news forces the media to come up with something “new” every day, which ends us (1) creating non-newsworthy news most of the time; (2) putting really important information in the same slot as the trivial; (3) making “news” into marketing and entertainment and profit; (4) letting us think we are well-informed about the world when in fact we know very little; (5) focusing on the “now” so intensely that what seemed highly important just yesterday is no longer relevant at all.

    He points out that it is the news that has made politics far more important than it should be, and the presidency far more important, and has forced politics to be all about changing things all the time and that the whole idea of daily news is what is to blame–it is an unfixable problem. You can’t just have better news or less biased news. It caught my attention that he said historians can go through decades in a lecture an hour long, but Americans think an hour watching what happened just today is worthwhile! My husband and I are watching Robert Godfrey’s excellent church history series, which is 72 lectures of less than a half hour each. And indeed he takes two lectures (45 minutes or so) to talk about Calvin. Yet we can give an equivalent amount of time to finding out what happened today, most of it totally inconsequential?

    He points out that once in a great while we have something newsworthy, and buy a newspaper then (that has long been my own philosophy–I bought one the day after 9/11, for instance) . . . but that books are better yet for reading about history. He also looks at how “news” reacted to the concentration camps, realizing that the biggest “news” of the century was something that was simply beyond them. They wanted it to be seared into people’s memories, but that is exactly the opposite of the way the news is supposed to work. We’re supposed to move on each day to today’s stories and forget yesterday’s.

    He also pointed out that the very standard of presumed objectivity is itself a problem. First, there is always an opposite viewpoint (suggesting that truth is not objective) and one gets the idea that two extremes have been interviewed and that truth is always somewhere between them, which is not always the case. (Sometimes the truth is actually more extreme than one of the two interviewed.) He handles that topic better than I can explain it, but it made sense. He also pointed out that the news insistence on looking for the newsworthy emphasizes that certain things don’t play well on TV, for instance religion. If you go to a denominational meeting looking for “news” you are going to focus in on whatever is controversial, and so you end up making it look like this whole meeting was a discussion of gay marriage (that wasn’t quite the example he used) when in fact it might have been a tiny part of one meeting–because it just isn’t newsworthy to talk about how many people attended, or discussions of the budget, and so forth. News “slants” by its very presence.

    And I’m only about halfway through!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Cheryl, originally it was if the Republicans keep the House and the Senate, I win because I have maintained they’ll keep them both. But Ricky has said if they just keep the Senate he will be so thankful that we’ll call it a draw and in that case we both pay up. The payoff is brisket from Ricky’s favorite client for me and white chocolate from Gatlinburg for him.

    I recently told my Dad about the bet, and was half expecting him to be scandalized because 1) it’s a bet and 2) it’s over the internet. I was driving in his car and he was sitting in the passenger seat and was very quiet when I told him. I glanced over and saw a small smile on his lips and he murmured ‘Brisket sounds very nice…’. So I’m planning to share if things go the way I think they will. :–)

    Liked by 4 people

  15. And gambling, too?

    I’ve been very critical of my own industry in recent years. We’ve been unwilling to self-criticize, trapped too often in our own left-leaning cocoon. The coverage of Trump has been, largely, unfair in my view.

    But not always.

    The problem with the whole ‘enemy of the people’ and ‘fake news’ charges is that, again, it swipes with a very broad brush. Those of us in the media have all felt the sting of these accusations now trickling down to a very personal level. I was called out by name in a bull horn at a recent anti-homeless rally (for daring to interview someone from the “other” side at a counter-protest across the street). I’ve been accused on social media of being a liberal, a bad reporter and of fomenting “FAKE NEWS!”

    Social media attacks, especially, can be uninformed & vicious.

    There’s no nuance in these debates, we in the media are portrayed simply as “the enemy” — can you trust everything you read? No. Can you trust some (maybe even much) of what you read? Yes.

    The danger is we’ve lost our ability to independently discern the value of the news we consume. Part of this is due to the explosion of hyper-partisan “news” sites that are more opinion than straight news.

    But there’s some good reporting out there, both locally and nationally. We need to regain our willingness and ability to read with open yet discerning minds and not automatically tag an entire segment of the media as “the enemy.” There are conservative reporters who may work for publications that are considered “liberal.” More importantly, there are working journalists who are still dedicated to the idea and goal of unbiased news reporting.

    Most of us in the media at large are just trying to do our jobs, often in communities where we also live and shop and are your neighbors. To automatically assume we’re all part of the “enemy” is taking its toll and will only cause some members of the media to push back out of human nature.

    Others among us just look forward to getting out of the business in this environment.

    If I hear or see false and often stupid accusations of “Fake News” referenced one more time …. argh.



    Anger toward media spreads into local communities

    NEW YORK (AP) — The hostility she’s felt from the public recently wasn’t necessarily the last straw in television news photographer Lori Bentley-Law’s decision to quit the business after 24 years, but it was one of them.

    Bentley-Law’s recent blog post explaining why she was leaving Los Angeles’ KNBC-TV hit home for many colleagues. While President Donald Trump’s attacks on the media are usually centered on national outlets like CNN and The New York Times, the attitudes unleashed have filtered down to journalists on the street covering news in local communities across the country.

    When a president describes the press as enemies of the people, “attitudes shift and the field crews get the brunt of the abuse,” she wrote. “And it’s not just from one side. We get it all the way around, pretty much on a daily basis.”

    The Radio Television Digital News Association is spreading safety and self-defense tips to journalists, most notably advising limits on the use of one-person news crews. The RTDNA has begun compiling anti-press incidents, like last week when an intruder was shot after kicking down glass doors at Fox’s local station in Washington. The National Press Photographers Association is developing workshops to spread safety advice to its members.

    “The environment has changed,” said Chris Post, a photographer for WFMZ-TV in Allentown, Pennsylvania. “I’ve witnessed the transition.”

    … Bentley-Law was startled when the essay on leaving her job got 11,000 hits in three days. She usually counts readers to her personal blog in the dozens. Her intention was to tell friends and colleagues why she was leaving, and instead was flooded with texts and emails from frustrated journalists across the country.

    “I suppose my experience isn’t unique and certainly resonated,” Bentley-Law, who declined to be interviewed, said via email.

    On her blog, she wrote that “I don’t want to be immersed in sadness every day. I don’t ever want a cute little girl in pigtails to look up at me and say, ‘We hate you.’ I don’t want to hear ‘fake news’ shouted at me anymore, or to be flipped off while driving my news van.”…

    Liked by 5 people

  16. Thankfully, I’ve been reporting on the same community for so many years that I’m fairly “known.” But even so, I’ve taken heat from people I’ve dealt with personally in the past, which stings. I don’t take it personally, it’s the whole “bad media” vibe that’s swept through the nation.

    I had to laugh the other day when one of our detractors posted on a very hostile social media page an editorial our paper had run that agreed with her position, essentially, regarding the homeless issue. She was shocked, I think.

    But that, of course, has nothing to do with — and it should have nothing to do with — what we do as journalists.

    I typically don’t even read our editorials or candidate endorsements. I’m old school, the editorial page belongs to the publisher and should never bleed over or affect what we do or cover as reporters.

    Same with advertising.

    I have no clue if our chain is now more conservative or liberal, I suspect we are a bit of both.

    Liked by 4 people

  17. DJ, There is definitely a hard thick line drawn between opinion and news reporting in my local online outlet the chattanoogan dot com. If there is a shootout on Wilcox St. there will be the bare minimal facts (time, date, police presence, injuries: serious/non-serious). There are never speculations such as type of injury, names of victims or suspects, motivations etc. When I read it I am sometimes frustrated by the lack of detail because the whole ‘story’ could have been written by listening to a police monitor. But then I realize that news is not necessarily supposed to be a ‘story’. That’s part of the problem I think. And then there is the opinion page, which is full of all the speculations on local issues one could desire. And often more. :–)

    Liked by 1 person

  18. The obvious response to counter an invading force. They’ve been warned.


    “The U.S. military announced Monday that, by the end of the week, it will send 5,200 active duty troops to the southwest border, as well as helicopters and heavy equipment to build new barriers, to meet a request from the Department of Homeland Security to augment resources in anticipation of the arrival of two caravans of migrants currently in Mexico.

    The deployment of active duty service members was triggered by President Trump’s remarks last week that he wanted the military to get involved in dealing with the caravan of migrants from Central America.

    On Monday, Trump, who has made the caravan and immigration a top issue ahead of the midterm elections, tweeted that the caravan of migrants included “Many Gang Members and some very bad people” and that they would not be allowed to enter the United States unless they went through “the legal process”.”

    “McAleenan said the caravan in Mexico now numbers 3,500 people and cited a second group of 3,000 that has become a concern because it has had violent interactions with security personnel as it attempted to enter Mexico Sunday.

    “We want to be ready for that,” he said. “We think this opportunity to harden our ports of entry, to be ready for mobile deployment between ports is a better way to prepare for the potential arrival of a large group like this.””


  19. So what have we learned so far?…….


    “Much (if not most) of what we have learned about the real scandals and true Russian collusion underlying the 2016 presidential election derives directly or indirectly from the dogged work of House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes and his Republican colleagues on the committee. In recognition of his efforts, Rep. Nunes has been punished by the dross of April Doss and others soldiering in the Democrat/Media complex. Rep. Nunes deserves some kind of award for service to the republic such as a Presidential Medal of Freedom.

    In his October 21 Washington Examiner column Byron York took a look back on what we have learned so far thanks to Nunes and colleagues including Trey Gowdy, John Ratcliffe, Bob Goodlatte, Jim Jordan, Mark Meadows:

    • The important role that the incendiary allegations in the still-unverified Trump dossier played in the FBI’s investigation of the Trump campaign.

    • The fact that the dossier was commissioned and paid for by the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic Party.

    • The unusual circumstances surrounding the formal beginning of the FBI’s counter-intelligence investigation into the Trump campaign.

    • The troubling deficiencies in the FBI’s application for the FISA warrant and renewals to wiretap onetime Trump campaign figure Carter Page.

    • The anti-Trump bias of some of the top officials in the FBI investigation.

    • The degree to which the dossier’s allegations spread throughout the Obama administration during the final days of the 2016 campaign and the transition.

    • Obama officials’ unmasking of Trump-related figures in intelligence intercepts.

    • The fact that FBI agents did not believe Michael Flynn lied to them in the interview that later led to Flynn’s guilty plea on a charge of lying to the FBI.

    • The role of the opposition research firm Fusion GPS in the Trump-Russia probe.

    • Nunes and his colleagues learned these things, and told the public about them, over the determined opposition of the FBI, the Justice Department, and Democrats, both on the Intelligence Committee and in the larger House.

    • In fact…the FBI and Justice Department fiercely resisted the investigation. They withheld materials, dragged their feet, and flat-out refused to provide information to which congressional overseers were clearly entitled. Sometimes disputes were settled by the intervention of House Speaker Paul Ryan on Nunes’ behalf. Sometimes they weren’t.

    • Nunes and the others performed a public service by investigating something no one else was investigating. The Senate Intelligence Committee conducted the big, bipartisan, flagship congressional probe into the Trump-Russia matter. Special counsel Robert Mueller, with full law enforcement powers, investigated Russian meddling, whether any Trump people were involved, and the question of whether the president attempted to obstruct the investigation.

    • No one wanted to investigate the investigators, even though their conduct cried out for scrutiny”

    And there’s more…..


    “Nunes and his colleagues learned these things, and told the public about them, over the determined opposition of the FBI, the Justice Department, and Democrats, both on the Intelligence Committee and in the larger House.”

    (And never-Trumpers…)

    “But no one wanted to investigate the investigators, even though their conduct cried out for scrutiny.

    The work is not yet done. These days, a joint group from the House Judiciary and Oversight committees is conducting interviews with several figures in the Trump-Russia matter. In addition, Nunes and other Republicans are still urging President Trump to release additional parts of the Carter Page surveillance application that they say will be contain new revelations.

    None of this has been bipartisan. The work has been done by Republicans and opposed by Democrats. And if Democrats win control of the House, as a number of polls suggest they will do, it will stop immediately.

    If Democrats win, Rep. Adam Schiff, who has opposed nearly everything Nunes has done, will become chairman of the Intelligence Committee. Rep. Jerrold Nadler will head the Judiciary Committee. And Rep. Elijah Cummings will take over the Oversight Committee.”


  20. Debra (12:09) — and now that news outlets are so focused primarily on digital and websites (rather than print editions) you’ll find evolving versions of a story like that as more details are gathered (but sometimes the bare minimum was all they had when the print edition deadlines arrived). Scanner details will build as witnesses and detectives are contacted, but that often takes a while.

    Liked by 1 person

  21. A news story doesn’t have to be boring, but it should always be fair and accurate — as much as that is possible working on tight deadlines and often with limited information.

    Liked by 2 people

  22. DJ yes, I do think the digital press has exerted its own lind of pressure. But I have been frustrated twice this year by the scarcity of detail to major incidents occurring a little over a mile frome my house and on my route hpme from work. Both involved SWAT and multiple police, and one also had a military humv and camo clad persons. It’s possible that the internet has made me lazy and I so rarely watch tv I don’t know when or where to find the news



  23. Debra, my husband and I have had times we’re curious enough about things that we check online reports for several days and never do find anything. One day we had to detour on our way home from church, for instance, because our usual intersection was absolutely flooded with emergency vehicles, including a couple of hook-and-ladder fire trucks, with police cars coming from all directions. Another time, driving our older daughter home after her high-school graduation, we drove past two separate accidents involving motorcycles (one of them with a dead white-tailed buck on the road, so one would think that accident was likely fatal), and neither showed up anywhere, that day or the next.

    Donna, do I agree that the media are the enemy of the people, no–but I would say a hefty percentage of the news media is doing harm, and overall it’s doing more harm than good. I’ve long thought that TV (for ANY purpose) does far more harm than good, though in moderation it’s closer to neutral, and the same is probably true of all forms of media. (Radio probably the most likely to have done more good than harm overall–but I haven’t researched radio and haven’t listened in years.) I wouldn’t say public schools are adversarial to America, either–but I wouldn’t agree that either phrase is something that must never be said. The problem isn’t people saying such things–free and open debate can handle stronger language than that–the problem is that the country is so divided that just about any statement can become an excuse to act out. And pro-Trump and anti-Trump divisions bring out the worst in people on both sides. Had Reagan ever said the media were the enemy–something I can see him saying well before being provoked as sorely as Trump has been–citizens would have discussed it, and some would have agreed and some disagreed, but it wouldn’t have gotten the attention, outrage, etc. that it gets from a president whose every move is controversial, and whose every word seems to inflame both sides.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. I just want you people to note the amount of restraint I’m showing here. I’ll be nice, but man, some people just beg for it…..


    “The youth vote may determine the Democrat Party’s destiny, which may not be as majestic as the party hopes. New York Magazine published interviews with 12 young people explaining why they probably won’t vote in these midterms.

    I’ve seen articles spouting youth enthusiasm for Democrats, but the magazine claimed that “only a third of people ages 18 to 29 say” they plan on casting ballots for the midterms.

    A few reasons? The big blow failed Democrat presidential candidate Hillary Clinton took in November 2016. Another feels “like the Democratic Party doesn’t really stand for the things” he believes in. One person gets anxious when he has to mail anything.

    Why They Won’t Vote
    Tim, 27, in Austin has never voted, but if he did, he’d only consider it symbolic because Texas is a red state. He tried to register to vote for the 2016 election, but he missed the deadline because he hates “mailing stuff” since it gives him anxiety.

    Then he brought up his ADHD:

    I have ADHD, and it makes it hard for me to do certain tasks where the payoff is far off in the future or abstract. I don’t find it intrinsically motivational. The amount of work logically isn’t that much: Fill out a form, mail it, go to a specific place on a specific day. But those kind of tasks can be hard for me to do if I’m not enthusiastic about it. That’s kind of a problem with social attitudes around, you know, “It’s your civic duty to vote.” I once told a co-worker I didn’t vote, and she said, “That’s really irresponsible,” in this judgmental voice. You can’t build a policy around calling people irresponsible. You need to make people enthusiastic and engaged.”



  25. Which reminds me of the scene in Young Frankenstein with the team of horses and the name of the Cloris Leachman character.

    Once again: “Math!”


  26. Debra (1:38), TV typically gets its news from newspapers, locally and otherwise. I’ve seen local TV reporters actually scanning our stories in the newspaper at story scenes. Typically we’ll write a story and the next day the TV stations will call the people featured to follow with their own stories.

    When it comes to local, more community-oriented news, it’s probably the dwindling staffs and outlets (a whole other issue that’s pummeling the business) that are making for less fleshed-out news stories.

    Frankly, I think it’s the state of our culture has influenced everything, including the media, for the worse. Again, Trump is the symptom, not the cause (though he also causes controversy of his own, pushing the boundaries further).

    Liked by 1 person

  27. I have read a physical newspaper daily for more than 50 years. (I started very young–with the LA Times and the San Pedro News Pilot).

    My husband considers our local paper, a NYTimes affiliate, worthless. I insist we have to receive it to know what’s happening locally. (They DID win a Pulitzer Prize for their fire coverage).

    But the annual bill came over the weekend–close to $500, and after my double-take, I paused.

    The president is on the front page nearly every day being blamed for something. I rarely read the front page anymore because it is so negatively slanted.

    The paper has led the charge for marijuana growers over homeowners.

    I deliberately vote against all their suggestions in their editorials.

    Do I really want to pay that kind of money for such one-sided coverage?

    Well, what would you do if your husband asked you?


  28. I was curious so I checked out our online editorials — all pretty much conservative, probably reflecting one of our large local acquisitions in recent years, a paper known for its staunch libertarian editorials.

    Coverage, of course, is not supposed to reflect what’s on those pages.

    I don’t know why print subscriptions are so high, but that’s happening across the board. I think the aim is instead to encourage much cheaper digital subscriptions as newspapers continue to transition from paper to screen.


  29. I miss seeing all the newspapers on the lawns in the mornings, hearing it slap against the steps. But I haven’t subscribed to a physical newspaper in years now.


  30. My favorite nerds have been very hard at work. If you assume there is a zero percent chance of a Democratic Senate AND a Republican House (which is a good assumption), then there is roughly a 5 in 7 chance that Debra gets her brisket and I get my candy.

    I am going to have to figure out to get that brisket to Tennessee in good shape. I figure the folks at The Hard Eight will have helpful advice.


  31. Ha. You know Republicans are in good shape when Ricky starts trying to figure out how to mail the brisket.

    Debra ;–)


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