57 thoughts on “News/Politics 11-19-18

  1. A good laugh, but still fake news.

    The NYT, still makin’ it up as they go……


    “Vice President Mike Pence on Saturday laughed off the suggestion that President Donald Trump has recently questioned his loyalty, saying that he “was tempted not to dignify it with a comment.”

    A New York Times story on Friday reported that multiple aides and outside advisers to the president had said Trump was openly asking whether Pence was loyal to him.

    Earlier in the week at a White House press conference, Trump was asked about Pence and had his vice president stand as he responded that he felt “very fine” about having Pence be on his 2020 ticket.

    While talking to reporters overseas on Saturday, Pence acknowledged talking with Trump in a phone call earlier in the day about the article but said that Trump made clear to him that he had never questioned Pence’s loyalty.

    “Let’s just leave it that we had a good laugh, and you know, the president said to me, ‘There are no anonymous sources that would say what that article said,’” Pence said.

    Pence responded to the article while in Papua New Guinea at APEC, the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation.

    “The president and I are very close,” Pence said to reporters. “We have a very strong relationship. And I’ve been honored to serve as his vice president. And I was honored when he asked me to run with him again.”

    On Saturday, Trump tweet without evidence that The New York Times “made up sources” for their story and that they “refused to ask” Trump for a quote.

    “I can’t imagine any President having a better or closer relationship with their Vice President then the two of us,” Trump tweeted.”

    And unlike the NYT;s imaginary source, they’ll go on the record as well.


  2. Doing the job Democrats won’t.

    Federal gun prosecutions up….

    Illegal immigration and fraud cases go down.


    “It’s one of the rare things on which Mayor Rahm Emanuel and President Donald Trump agree: the need for more federal gun prosecutions in Chicago.

    In 2014, Chicago’s Democratic mayor declared that federal prosecutors in Chicago, working under then-President Barack Obama, were doing a “horrible” job tackling gun crime.

    Trump took up the issue, beginning as he campaigned for the Republican nomination for president. And just after he assumed office in early 2017, he tweeted that he would “send in the Feds” if the city didn’t “fix the horrible carnage.” Days later, Jeff Sessions, his attorney general at the time, promised to step up gun prosecutions in Chicago.

    Now, a year and a half later, the mayor and the president seem to have gotten what they wanted. Federal gun prosecutions in Chicago are up, as they are nationally.

    That’s according to a Chicago Sun-Times analysis of court data that also found that the number of federal fraud prosecutions in Chicago has fallen in recent years and that fewer illegal immigration cases are being brought here than a decade ago.

    Days ago, John Lausch, the U.S. attorney in Chicago, noted the rising number of gun prosecutions. But Lausch also said: “We’re not patting ourselves on the back. I mean, we have a lot of work to do.””


  3. The ultimate fake news story.


    “Fake news is a serious problem in our political life. I’m not referring to a pathetically small number of Facebook ads bought by Russian provocateurs. I’m talking about the fake news that was paid for by the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee; fabricated by Democratic Party-allied consultants; propagated by the FBI and the CIA; promoted by the broadcast networks, CNN, MSNBC, the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Associated Press; trumpeted by pretty much every senior elected Democrat; and kept alive by the appalling Robert Mueller. The claim that the Trump campaign colluded with the Russians to “steal” the 2016 presidential election is the great fake news of our time.

    How successful have the Democrats been in propagating that myth? This survey by The Economist and YouGov suggests that they have been successful beyond their wildest dreams. First the numbers, then some observations. Click to enlarge:”


    “Note the question asked: Did Russia “tamper with vote tallies in order to get Donald Trump elected President?” There is no evidence–I repeat, none–that Russia “tampered with vote tallies.” To my knowledge, no one has claimed that Russia tampered with vote tallies. I am not aware of any plausible theory on which a foreign power could tamper with vote tallies. To say that Russia tampered with vote tallies is as credible as asserting that the moon is made of green cheese.

    And yet, two-thirds of Democrats say it is either “definitely true” (31%) or “probably true” (36%) that Russia tampered with vote tallies. Women are especially gullible; 48%, across all party lines, have fallen for this fake news. Sadly, 70% of blacks have bought it hook, line and sinker. The Northeast is the country’s most ignorant region, apparently: 47% of Northeasterners have fallen for the hoax.

    So the Democrats, by their constant hysteria and innuendo, have convinced a large majority of their followers, and 42% of all Americans, of a palpable falsehood that was fabricated in order to assure Hillary Clinton’s election and then, when that effort failed, perpetuated in an attempt to cripple President Trump’s administration.”


  4. Exactly zero…..



  5. Yeah…… funny that.



  6. ———————–



  7. The other countries around the Pacific Rim have difficult choices to make: China is led by aggressive authoritarians. The US is led by a childish imbecile.


  8. The press corps will be crying now, just remember to thank Jim Acosta.

    He built this.


    “Acosta got his press pass back, but his media colleagues will pay the price

    Court ruling permits White House to promulgate press conduct and discipline rules, something the White House is eager to do.”

    “On Friday, November 16, 2018, the federal District Court in D.C. granted a temporary restraining order compelling the White House to reinstate CNN’s Jim Acosta’s “hard pass,” that gives him privileged access to the White House for press briefings and events.

    As described in our coverage of the decision, there is no written opinion or transcript as of now that can be reviewed to understand the precise parameters and reasoning of the judge. As of this writing, we only have media reports as to the judge’s stated reasons.

    Based on those media reports, it appears that Acosta won on procedural grounds, that he was not afforded due process in the revocation of his hard pass. The judge stated that the ruling was narrow, and that it did not include a determination (yet) that Acosta’s First Amendment rights were violated.

    Acosta exploited the lack of formal procedures and process to get back his pass. But that may come back to bite his colleagues.

    While I didn’t expect the judge to grant the TRO, I predicted Acosta’s lawsuit risked taking bad facts and making bad law, Jim Acosta and his media enablers are on the verge of creating law that will damage journalism:

    “Bad facts make bad law” is a common saying. What that means is that bad facts in a specific case can create legal precedent that is damaging to others, not just the bad actor in the case.

    Nowhere is that more clear than in the pending motion by Jim Acosta and CNN, publicly supported by over a dozen major media outlets, requesting a Temporary Restraining Order and Preliminary Injunction forcing the White House to restore Acosta’s press “hard pass.” ….

    In the absence of clear law, the president and press have established certain norms of conduct. The White House gets to decide who gets hard passes, but usually gives such passes to numerous reporters for each of the major networks and newspapers without singling people out for denial.

    A reciprocal norm is that reporters who get hard passes, while they may ask difficult and contentious questions, do not abuse the privileged access status of hard passes by disrupting press conferences or other events.

    Acosta has pushed these norms to the extreme ever since Trump took office. He is a showboater who makes everything about him. He shouts questions in very dramatic fashion. He offers commentary and criticism, as if he were a political opponent and the press conference were a debate.

    Acosta’s conduct prior to November 7 was the subject of much criticism from Trump and Sarah Sanders, among others, but he never lost his “hard pass” before. All the while, CNN promoted Acosta’s antics for ratings and clicks, and other media were largely silent as they witnessed his aggressive self-aggrandizing performances during press conferences and press briefings.

    As even the NY Times acknowledges, under the TRO Ruling the White House can design policies and procedures to regulate the conduct and discipline of reporters granted access to the White House:””

    Trump says thanks Jim. 🙂


  9. We can’t miss you if you won’t leave.


    Liked by 1 person

  10. Boot and Nichols are just waiting to see if the imbecile is impeached and removed or defeated in 2020. If he is, they will be back. The libertarian types may be gone for some time.


  11. They won’t be back. We don’t want or need them. Trump won without them last time, he’ll do it again.

    You and your Democrat friends own them now. They’re all yours.


  12. The best corrupt govt. money can buy.


    “Schumer got $50K in donations from Facebook — and his daughter got a job”

    “What does it take to friend a U.S. senator?

    If you’re Facebook, all you need is about $50,000 in donations – and a cushy job for the politician’s daughter.

    Facebook employees, including some at the top of its corporate pyramid, have helped fill Schumer’s campaign coffers – and he’s returned the favor by carrying water for the social media giant in Congress, according to a recent report.

    And Alison Schumer, the senator’s youngest of two daughters, works as a Facebook product marketing manager – which pays an average of $160,000, according to Glassdoor.com.

    “It sure looks hinky,” political strategist Susan Del Percio told The Post. “This is an industry that’s been trying for years to fend off heavy government regulation by actively cultivating relationships with senators and House members.”

    Last week, it emerged that Schumer has been a strong advocate of Facebook on Capitol Hill. He pressured Sen. Mark Warner (D- Virginia), one of Facebook’s most aggressive challengers in Congress, to back off from investigating the company, according to The New York Times.”


  13. Following the process…….

    The process now says you get your credentials suspended for acting like a jackass.

    And Acosta and CNN thought they’d won……

    Hehe. 🙂


    “Jim Acosta and CNN were granted a Temporary Restraining Order on Friday, November 16, 2018, restoring Acosta’s White House “hard pass,” to allow him privileged access to the White House grounds for press briefings and other events, pending further court action.

    The White House promptly announced that it would promulgate rules governing press conduct and discipline, to address the court’s concern that Acosta was not afforded due process.

    The court required the parties to files status reports by noon today as to how they wished to proceed with the next stage, the request for preliminary and permanent injunctions.

    Acosta and CNN have filed an Emergency Status Report (pdf.)(full embed at bottom of post) with the court seeking expedited hearing of the motion for a preliminary injunction, stating that the White House has threatened to revoke Acosta’s hard pass again. The Decision Transcript (pdf.)(full embed at bottom of post) was filed as an exhibit to the tion, the first time the transcript has been publicly available.

    In the Status Report, Acosta and CNN say that the White House has threatened again to revoke Acosta’s hard pass:

    Following this Court’s TRO decision, Plaintiffs offered to resolve this dispute amicably by working with Defendants and the White House Correspondents ‘ Association to establish protocols for White House press conferences on a going forward basis. Defendants did not respond to this offer to cooperate; instead, after 9 p.m. on Friday, just hours after this Court’s order requiring the restoration of Acosta’s White House press pass, Defendants Sarah Huckabee Sanders and William Shine sent the attached letter, stating, among other things, that they had made the “preliminary decision to suspend [Acosta’s] hard pass due to [his] onduct at the President’s November 7, 2018 press conference.” Ex. 58 at 1. They demanded a response by 5 :00 p.m. on Sunday and arbitrarily set a deadline of 3 :00 p.m. Monday for their determination as to whether the “preliminary decision” becomes “final.” Ex. 5 8 at 1.

    In response, as set forth in the attached letter, Plaintiffs objected to Defendant’s attempt to provide retroactive due process, and have requested that Defendants refrain from – yet again – violating the constitutional rights of CNN and Acosta. Ex. 59.

    Plaintiffs remain hopeful that the parties can resolve this dispute without further court intervention. But in light of Defendants’ stated intentions, Plaintiffs respectfully request that the Court enter an order requiring Defendants to file their opposition to Plaintiffs’ motion for a preliminary injunction on Tuesday, November 20, 2018, as required by Local Rule 65 .l(c), with Plaintiffs’ reply due Tuesday, November 27, 2018, or according to an expedited schedule the Court deems appropriate. Plaintiffs further request that the Court schedule a hearing on the motion for the week of November 26, 2018, or as soon thereafter as possible. Finally, Plaintiffs respectfully suggest, in response to the Court’s inquiry, that briefing on the merits and the preliminary injunction should not be combined, as discovery may be necessary to resolve Plaintiffs’ claims.

    Here is the letter referenced in the Emergency Status Report, which reads:”


  14. Dems are now the party of the elitists.

    And they’re converting new followers among the so-called “educated” and moneyed crowd of elitist R’s like Ricky.

    They won’t admit their treachery, of course, and will instead blame you know who.

    Or Trump has been using his time machine to travel back in time again and change the past for his own nefarious purposes….. or something.


    “In 2004, liberal journalist and political scientist Thomas Frank caused a stir with his book, “What’s the Matter with Kansas,” a broadside against the natives of his home state and their lurch to the right that Frank perceived to be against their economic interests.

    In the wake of the 2018 midterms, it should be the Republicans asking, “What’s the Matter with Kansas?,” after Kris Kobach lost the governorship to Democrat Laura Kelly in a state in which registered Republicans outnumber Democrats almost 2-1.

    Some in the GOP establishment were quick to point the finger at Kobach, whose tough approach to immigration had made him a controversial figure in the media. But a closer look pours cold water on that theory and shows a more disquieting story for GOP.

    Kobach ran just a few percentage points behind Sam Brownback, the most recently-elected GOP governor, almost everywhere in the state — except one place.

    Kelly blitzed Kobach in Johnson County, by far the most affluent county in Kansas, one that had not voted for a Democrat for president since Woodrow Wilson in 1916, but which has been trending Democratic in recent years.

    Sam Brownback carried it by 3,000 votes (1.5 percent) in 2014. Kobach lost it by 44,000 (16.5 percent) in 2018. A total drop of 9 percent — more than 47,000 votes; that was greater than his statewide margin of defeat.

    But these affluent voters weren’t’ turning away from allegedly “extreme” Republicans like Kobach; they were turning away from Republicans in general.

    Until 2018, the Johnson County district had been represented by Kevin Yoder, co-chairman of the Bipartisan Congressional Civility Caucus. He’d been a moderate on immigration, frustrating the party’s right wing.

    Yet Yoder, who won Johnson county 62.7 percent to 37.3 percent in 2014 lost it to challenger Sharice Davids 53-44 in 2018, a drop of more than 17 percent, a drop far steeper than Kobach’s vs. Brownback.

    But the data show there’s nothing unique going on in Kansas. Yoder and Kobach’s experience was imitated in wealthy districts throughout the country.

    Much of the media’s discussion of the GOP “losing the suburbs” frames the issue in a way to flatter the sensibilities of liberals and Democrats (the two parties split 49-49 in the suburban vote according to exit polls).

    The Democrats actually did slightly better in the suburbs in 2006 and 2008 and only slightly worse than 2012 when GOP dominated the House of Representatives elections.

    The reality is that the Democratic Party has become the party of the rich (including rich suburbs) and the poor, and the GOP the party of the forgotten and increasingly disempowered middle class.

    Want proof? At the conclusion of the election, Democrats control all 20 of wealthiest congressional districts in the country (They won the top 10 by an average vote of 65-34 percent).

    Republicans are allegedly the party of the rich and big business. The biggest winners of the Tax Cuts and Jobs act were both the top 1 percent and the 90th percentile and up. Yet, data suggests these affluent voters have pocketed the tax cut and went out and voted for the Democrats.”

    Ungrateful traitors.


  15. And they only keep the poor around for votes, tossing them bread, circuses, and handouts to keep them occupied while they pillage the rest of the country.


  16. We have now returned from our trip to gorgeous Gatlinburg. There’s lots of candy in the mail for Ricky and friends and I have been assured it will arrive by Wednesday this week. I told the clerk who helped package the boxes at the candy store that the candy was the payoff for an election bet and was being sent to Texas. He was a retired military man who has lived in Texas, but was from upstate New York. So Ricky’s favorite Southern candy comes to him with the complements of a military Yankee. :–)

    PS I think I figured out the real reason Ricky likes Gatlinburg so much. More later. ;–)

    Liked by 3 people

  17. I saw the link of Mona Charen’s review of Sasse’s book. I think I will bookmark the review and read it after I have read the book myself. I was hoping to be well into it by now, but Thanksgiving is my very favorite holiday, so I’m trying to take the time to savor all of it.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Oh come on

    Liked by 1 person

  19. NOT FAIR!
    You can only leave the GOP once.

    I see where Trump has criticized California’s forest management. He suggests clearing out the underbrush.
    You can tell this ma has no concern for the spotted owl…

    Liked by 1 person

  20. He did mention him in his 2000 book while criticizing US foreign policy, but I don’t think “pointed him out” is accurate.

    But yeah, the fact is he should have been caught sooner, and would have been without the implicit help of the Pakistani govt. These are known facts.

    And yeah, Clinton had a shot and failed to take it. Also a known fact.

    And finally, yeah again, we paid them billions while they let him “hide” right in their back yard.

    So mostly accurate.


  21. So help me out here fellas, what’s the issue?

    I mean other than Trump saying it, which makes everything bad, I know….

    But really, what’s the problem with his statement?


  22. Just like this I guess, when Trump says it it’s the worst thing ever, even though it’s true. But when someone else does it’s OK.

    This IS an invasion.


    “Hundreds of angry residents took to the streets of downtown Tijuana on Sunday to protest the caravan of Central American migrants that has been streaming into the city in recent weeks.

    Carrying Mexican flags and singing the national anthem, the demonstrators marched to a sports complex where about 2,000 of the migrants are being housed. There, held back by a wall of riot police, they denounced the mostly Honduran migrants as “criminals” and “freeloaders” who were openly flouting Mexican law.

    “This is an invasion!” shouted local carpenter Luis Alexis Mendoza, according to the Los Angeles Times. “We demand respect. We demand that our laws be followed.””

    Yet when Trump says it it’s raaaaaacist. 🙄


  23. Here’s some excerpts from his book. He’s clearly embellishing somewhat, but not totally.

    This was from a Fact Check CBS did on some things Scarborogh said about Trump, but it’s useful because it covers the releveant protions of the book in question.


    “The record: Trump did mention bin Laden by name in Chapter 4, called, “The Foreign Policy We Deserve.” However he merely pointed bin Laden as an illustration of haphazard foreign policy — not to predict that bin Laden would be responsible for the next attack against the U.S.

    “Instead of one looming crisis hanging over us, we face a bewildering series of smaller crises, flash points, standoffs, and hot spots. We’re not playing the chess game to end all chess games anymore. We’re playing tournament chess–one master against many rivals. One day we’re all assured that Iraq is under control, the UN inspectors have done their work, everything’s fine, not to worry. The next day the bombing begins. One day we’re told that a shadowy figure with no fixed address named Osama bin-Laden is public enemy number one, and U.S. jetfighters lay waste to his camp in Afghanistan. He escapes back under some rock, and a few news cycles later it’s on to a new enemy and new crisis,” Trump wrote. “Dealing with many different countries at once may require many different strategies. But there isn’t any excuse for the haphazard nature of our foreign policy. We don’t have to reinvent the wheel for every new conflict.”

    This portion was after the first Trade Center bombing but before 9-11 Trade Center attacks.

    “The record: Here’s what Trump had to say about a terror attack in his 2000 book.

    In Chapter 1, he wrote, “I really am convinced we’re in danger of the sort of terrorist attacks that will make the bombing of the Trade Center look like kids playing with firecrackers. No sensible analyst rejects this possibility, and plenty of them, like me, are not wondering if but when it will happen.”

    And in Chapter 5, there was this: “In our age of miniaturization, weapons have shrunk–and the threat against us is suddenly very large. When a nuclear device can fit in a suitcase, and a canister of anthrax can devastate New York, Boston, Los Angeles, or any other American city, the equation has changed radically.”

    He also wrote, “Yet it’s time to get down to the hard business of preparing for what I believe is the real possibility that somewhere, sometime, a weapon of mass destruction will be carried into a major American city and detonated.”

    Trump was, in fact, right that there was a terror attack far greater in scale than the 1993 World Trade Center bombings, which killed six people and injured more than 1,000. The Sept. 11 attacks killed nearly 3,000.

    He was off-base about other aspects, though. Trump predicted the terror plot would be the result of the miniaturization of weapons like nuclear bombs or a canister of anthrax.”

    “The record:The 9/11 attacks also didn’t come without warning. As early as December 4, 1998, former President Clinton was warned that bin Laden was preparing to hijack U.S. aircraft, according to the 9/11 Commission Report. But Trump’s assessment that “the inadequate use of intelligence is pervasive” rings the most true given the intelligence failures that occurred prior to the attacks.

    “Information was not shared, sometimes inadvertently or because of legal misunderstandings. Analysis was not pooled. Effective operations were not launched. Often the handoffs of information were lost across the divide separating the foreign and domestic agencies of the government,” the commission’s report said.”


  24. AJ, I’m actually willing to read his tweet as completely accurate. The ridiculous Trumpian thing is he made the tweet as a thinly-veiled jab at one of the SEALs involved in the OBL capture. Why? He’s so petulant. And yet…

    That Navy SEAL did make the every-bit-as-equally-absurd comment that Trump’s hostility to a portion of the media is indicative of some kind of “assault on democracy,” which is pretty stupid, but anyhoo…


  25. But under the Trumpkin understanding of how our government functions, isn’t every individual Navy SEAL authorized to conduct major operations inside Pakistan whenever he so desires upon the suggestion of the host of a reality television show?


  26. Ricky,

    I’m sure that made perfect sense in your head, but something is clearly lost in translation.

    In other words, pipe down, you’re babbling again.


  27. Until then, I will help.

    1. Do you understand that Trump was attacking McRaven for the timing of the raid on Bin Laden?

    2. Do you understand the absurdity of that charge by Trump? Apparently not, so we must continue.

    3 Do you understand that although McRaven was in overall command of the raid on Bin Laden, authorization for the raid had to come from the President, not McRaven?

    4. Do you know that McRaven was never the President?

    5. Did you note that in his Tweet, Trump said that he had previously suggested action against Bin Laden?

    6. Are you aware that before his unfortunate election as president, Trump was the host of a reality television show?


  28. SolarP, It is all relative. Beto is green, and not particularly bright. However, he would never say something as stupid as the Trump Tweet you posted @12:06. Now I guess you might say that Trump isn’t as dumb as that Tweet makes him seem. You might say that Trump acts dumber than he really is because his cult lets him get away with it. That may be true.


  29. You might even say that Trump acts dumber than he really is in order to appeal to his uneducated cultists. That would probably be snarky and condescending, but that may also be true.


  30. 734 wasn’t snarky, 655 was.

    But give Ricky credit. Social media is having fun with Trump’s leaf raking comment, Finns are demonstrating their raking prowess, and yet Ricky hasn’t posted a thing.

    Liked by 1 person

  31. HRW is correct. My comment at 6:55 was inappropriate.

    I had just been thinking on the way home how this Trump/McRaven incident is the perfect example of what we have been discussing over the last few days. Trump is like that blue/gold dress that was posted a while back. He is constantly saying something that 50-55% of the country thinks is absolutely idiotic, but 40-45% see as normal or correct. As Nate Silver and his buddies have chronicled, the best predictor of whether you see Trump as a blue dress or a gold dress is that college degree. It is very, very strange.


  32. Ricky, a person can be very bright and very well educated without a college degree . . . and very stupid and very poorly educated with one.

    My little brother (a Texan, FWIW) got his GED to finish high school. As far as I know his only college classes have been some classes taking Spanish. He works with his hands, working at UPS and building houses. I have a college degree, graduated with honors with a B.A. But I always learn something in a conversation with him, since he is brilliant and has a lot of wisdom. A hundred years ago, it wasn’t uncommon for adults not to have finished high school, and I think it would be a little hard to say we are smarter these days than they were.

    Where did Jesus go to college, BTW?

    Liked by 4 people

  33. All true, Cheryl. I was ruminating on similar thoughts as I was walking.

    Nevertheless, the people who have those degrees seem much better able to see through Trump’s nonsense than those who don’t.

    I think it may well have something to do with Trump himself and who he has spent his life targeting. After brief efforts to run legitimate businesses resulted in multiple failures, he moved into ventures that exploited the uneducated: casinos, a strip joint, fake universities, money laundering, etc. As noted before, all of his wives were uneducated.

    He has spent his life conning the uneducated. The smart ones will not be conned, but he is very good at exploiting those who can be conned.

    Charles Murray could explain what is going on, but after the grief he received for The Bell Curve, I am not sure that he will.


  34. Trump is probably right about the effects of efficient maintenance of forests. I thought the forests all looked remarkable when I was in Germany the last time (about 35 yrs ago). I noticed that there was a pronounced lack of underbrush and, yes, the forest looked raked and cleaned out. The Germans are very fastidious though. They also swept the paths in their gardens until not a leaf was out of place, as well as their own sidewalks and the street in front of their home.


  35. Like I said. Ricky is an elitist wannabe, He can’t help it.

    But it’s OK, I’ve been called worse by far better men than him.

    I can live with his snobbery.


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