42 thoughts on “News/Politics 2-3-20

  1. Well, well, well….

    And now you know Giuliani had to be attacked by Dems and their mouthpiece media. Can’t have him finding where the real crimes were.


    “Ukrainian Prosecutor Biden Demanded Be Fired Files Federal Complaint in Kiev”

    “We’ve all seen the clip at least a hundred times. Speaking at a Council on Foreign Relations event in January 2018, former Vice President Joe Biden boasted that he threatened to withhold $1 billion in U.S. aid to Ukraine unless then-President Petro Poroshenko fired the prosecutor who was investigating Ukrainian natural gas company Burisma Holdings in the next six hours.

    “I said, ‘you’re not getting the billion’ … I looked at them and said, ‘I’m leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you’re not getting the money.’ Well, son of a b****, he got fired. And they put in place someone who was solid at the time.”

    Hunter Biden was appointed to Burisma’s board of directors in 2014 shortly after Joe Biden became President Obama’s point man for Ukraine and was paid $83,000 per month. In March 2016, Burisma and its owner/founder Mykola Zlochevsky were under investigation by Ukrainian Prosecutor General, Viktor Shokin. Shokin was about to question Hunter Biden when his father delivered his now-famous ultimatum.

    French media outlet, Les Crises reported last week that Shokin has filed a federal complaint with Ukraine’s National Bureau of Investigation (NABU) which accuses Biden of abusing his power. According to PJ Media, this report has been confirmed by multiple sources.

    I have reprinted Les Crises’ translation of Shokin’s Complaint against Biden below (emphasis mine).

    I’m also including an excerpt from an earlier post here to give readers an idea of the scale of the corruption that allegedly occurred. President Trump’s personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, returned from an evidence-gathering trip to Kiev, Vienna, and Budapest in December. His findings bolster Shokin’s case. A second post about Giuliani’s findings can be viewed here.

    Giuliani alleges that the corruption in Ukraine in 2016 was so extensive that it was President Trump’s “duty” to request an investigation.”


  2. Swamp creatures.


    “The Vindman Twins Are Creatures of John Bolton

    The American people have the former national security advisor to blame for the presence of the self-serving brothers on the National Security Council staff.”

    “During his four decades as an accumulator of power in the nation’s capital, a holder of high offices in the State Department, and finally a stint as President Trump’s national security adviser, John Bolton has been well known for his scrupulous attention to the hiring and firing of his staff.

    He always has demanded unwavering personal loyalty as well as fealty to his own—not his president’s—policy agenda. He has performed the most rigorous vetting on all who have been selected to serve on his various staffs, both the small number of political appointees a political appointee such as himself is allowed to have as well as the more numerous personnel selected from the foreign service, civil service, military services, and intelligence agencies.

    The extremes to which Bolton goes to enforce his Bolton-centric scheme of things were exposed dramatically in the episode of his handpicked choice as deputy national security advisor, Mira Ricardel. The latter had a well-deserved reputation as “Bolton’s Bolton”—that is, a screamer, a browbeater, and a toxic boss par excellence. Ricardel’s exercises in Attila the Hun’s management methods were so over-the-top that they attracted the displeased attention of First Lady Melania Trump, who took the rare step of publicly calling for Ricardel’s dismissal. Ricardel had denigrated and disparaged members of the first lady’s staff.

    Notwithstanding the public denunciation of Ricardel by the first lady, a standoff ensued. Bolton never relented in his support for his hatchetwoman. Ricardel finally was pried away from her White House position in November 2018 at a moment when Bolton was out of the country and unable to barricade her office door.

    This incident illumined in high relief that Bolton’s loyalties are never to his superiors but always to himself and to others only so long as they remain his sycophants.

    The strange case of the Vindman twins (Alexander and Yevgeny) should be examined in the light of Bolton’s Roi du Soleil management style.

    In July 2018, three months or so after becoming President Trump’s national security adviser, Bolton hired both Army Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman as a Ukraine policy specialist for the National Security Council and his identical twin brother, Army Lt. Col. Yevgeny Vindman, as deputy legal counsel in the NSC’s “ethics” office.

    Bolton is totally responsible for this pair of unusual hires. There is no explaining this strange duo of appointments as something that the bureaucracy simply slipped over on Bolton. That is not Bolton’s way.

    Anyone who has been involved in national security affairs in Republican administrations since 1981 knows that it is impossible that the Vindman brothers were given sensitive jobs in Bolton’s NSC without Bolton having become assured of their usefulness and loyalty to Bolton and his agenda. Both the Ukraine policy and the “ethics attorney” slots are of vast personal priority to Bolton.

    On the face of it, it is very odd for any administration to hire a pair of identical twin Army lieutenant colonels to work at the very same time in the same office in any part of the government, much less on the elite, super-sensitive National Security Council staff. Concerns over conflicts of interest are magnified when one of the identical twins is an “ethics counsel” privy both to allegations and self-disclosures of sensitive financial data and any legally and ethically questionable actions by NSC staffers.

    In Washington, if a person in Yevgeny’s position and with his political bias breaks the seal of the confessional, he doesn’t get excommunicated; he gets lionized in the mainstream media.

    Given the bizarre situation Bolton had brought about with the twins serving in sensitive positions on his staff, one might have expected that Alexander and Yevgeny would have recused themselves from dealing with one another in any fashion that could be construed as a possible conflict of interests.

    But the NSC is a particularly gassy precinct of the swamp, so expectations of prudence and “abundance of caution” between identical twin Army officers on the NSC staff of course were misbegotten.

    So here we are. “


  3. Yeah, let’s go with this strategy.


    “Democrats’ Election Strategy: Call Everyone A Moron”

    “Democrats find themselves in an unenviable position for the 2020 election: they have to convince the American public that they don’t know how bad they have it at a time when we have it pretty good. Their task is like me trying to convince my 2-year-old daughter that she doesn’t really like chocolate ice cream – an impossibility. But when the alternative is to run a campaign extolling the virtues of socialism and the need for government to take life decision-making powers away from individuals, talking people out of believing reality seems like an easier task.

    The economy is churning along, Democrats have to make people believe it’s not. They’ve seized on GDP growth being only just over 2 percent last quarter, thinking this will help them. It won’t. GDP is a helpful indicator, but when you have record low unemployment, a booming stock market (hello, 401k!), and wage growth being disproportionately reaped by low income workers (hello, power of full employment), the public isn’t buying it.

    The one thing Democrats don’t understand about the American people is everyone doesn’t want to be a billionaire. It’d be nice, no doubt, but the vast majority of people aren’t seething with anger that they have to fly commercial while liberal elites have a Gulfstream at the ready. We notice the hypocrisy but don’t begrudge their success. They’re happy with being able to afford to fly more than they’re obsessed with the method of flying.

    Most people just want to be secure in their lives – be able to pay their bills, take care of their families, and have some money left over to have fun with friends and family. They wouldn’t turn down a trip to the Swiss Alps for a ski vacation with the rich and famous, but they’re content with going to the Grand Canyon or to visit loved ones for a few days. Not everyone wants to be a Kardashian.

    The politics of jealousy works on some, but not many and certainly not many in the Heartland of the country. But jealousy is what Democrats are offering, and when that offer is rejected they turn vicious.

    Politicians are too skilled at manipulation to frame their contempt in blatant terms, but chunky TV sidekick Andy Richter wasn’t. “I’m from the supposed Heartland, and in a political context ‘the Heartland’ does not mean not-Washington. It means the place where white people run things,” Conan O’Brien’s joyless laugh track tweeted this week in response to comments from Pete Buttigieg about needing leadership from flyover country. “And if he doesn’t know that he’s far too naive to be President,” he concluded.

    If you aren’t them, you are their enemy.

    “Mayor Pete,” for his part, is no better. The progressive mindset is not dependent upon geography, it is an arrogance every bit as contagious as the coronavirus. And Pete is just as infected as every other Democratic candidate.”


  4. Why prolong the inevitable?


    “Editorial: Witnesses would have prolonged inevitable”

    The impeachment trial of President Donald Trump is expected to conclude later this week, without hearing from the additional witnesses demanded by Democrats.

    Uncertainty about that outcome was settled when Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tennessee, gave Senate Majority Leader the final vote he needed to block the calling of former national security adviser John Bolton and others Democrats believed would bolster their case for removing Trump from office.

    Democrats who pushed the impeachment through the House on a straight party line vote and without conceding to Republican requests to call witnesses, are, as expected, crying “cover-up.”

    But Alexander got it exactly right in explaining his decision:

    “There is no need for more evidence to prove something that has already been proven and that does not meet the United States Constitution’s high bar for an impeachable offense. …

    “The question then is not whether the president did it, but whether the United States Senate or the American people should decide what to do about what he did. I believe that the Constitution provides that the people should make that decision in the presidential election that begins in Iowa on Monday.”


  5. Clarence Thomas is tired of the media getting his history wrong.


    “Director Of Powerful New Clarence Thomas Documentary Opens Up: ‘He Just Got Tired Of Having His Story Distorted’

    ‘It’s a classic story of going from dire poverty in the segregated South to the highest court of the land, including many spiritual and intellectual twists and turns.’

    “The climax of “Created Equal: Clarence Thomas in His Own Words,” arrives when the venerable justice recalls the moment he learned his nomination to the Supreme Court was confirmed. Speaking very much “in his own words,” Thomas remembers thinking, “whoop-dee-damn-doo.”

    The humor is poignant because it comes after viewers journey with Thomas through his whole life, from rural poverty in the Jim Crow South to Yale, from one marriage to another, from seminary to the Supreme Court, and from hard-earned respectability to a devastating confirmation battle. After watching decades of blood, sweat, and tears culminate in a character assassination of historic proportion, “whoop-dee-damn-doo” feels about right.

    The corporate media’s one-dimensional rendering of Thomas is deeply unfair, and that’s where director Michael Pack steps in. “Created Equal,” Pack’s compelling new documentary, opens in select theaters on Jan. 31. (See here for the full list, or to request a local screening.)

    Pack managed to get the famously quiet jurist talking, guiding viewers on an intimate march through his remarkable life, starting in little Pin Point, Georgia, and ending where he sits today. “Created Equal” features two surprisingly fast hours of original interviews with Thomas and his wife Ginni, cut from more than 30 hours Pack spent interviewing them in a Virginia studio over a six-month period.

    I chatted with Pack earlier this week about what it was like behind-the-scenes of “Created Equal,” his experience working so closely with Justice Thomas, why the story is so relevant today, Joe Biden, and so much more.”


  6. This foreign hack continues to meddle in America, and never in a good way.


    “The announcement that George Soros will commit $1 billion to create the Open Society University Network (OSUN) has flooded the mainstream media and the internet in the last several days. The announcement has attracted public attention and certainly deserves a closer look.

    George Soros is a currency speculator with political ambitions. His goal is to remake the world. The idea of the “open society” goes back to the period of the Cold War when Karl Popper, a British philosopher, advanced it as a response to the Soviet threat. It has been largely neglected since then. George Soros has turned the open society into his personal ideological tool that he uses to realize his political ambitions. He has already spent over $32 billion of his money to achieve this goal and he is determined to continue pursuing his agenda.

    George Soros and his organization — Open Society Foundations (OSF) — are very political in orientation. Soros himself characterizes his activities as “political philanthropy” — a euphemistic term he uses for what we commonly call buying political influence. Politics comes first. All other ventures of the OSF, including educational ones, are directly related to politics.

    There is some confusion in the rationale for creating OSUN. Soros himself is the source of this confusion. On one hand, he writes in his articles that the goal of OSUN is to help educate “young people and promote ‘personal autonomy.’” On the other hand, he also stresses that he wants to use education to “fight nationalism, climate change, and to promote the ideal of open society.” These two orientations are at cross-purposes. Fighting nationalism and climate change and promoting an “open society” are clearly political in their orientation. The title of Soros’s article devoted to OSUN is “How a Democratic Counteroffensive Can Win”, which also points to the political nature of this new venture. When politics is infused in education, the result is usually indoctrination.

    Soros made the initial announcement of the new project in a speech he gave at a dinner funded by his organization at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. The speech was clearly political in nature. For much of it, Soros talked about the current political situation in the world and the threat of authoritarianism. Only at the end of the speech did he include a lengthy section dealing with the new educational venture. The inclusion of education in what essentially is a political speech confirms that OSUN is primarily about politics, not education (however conflated the two may be in Soros’s mind).”


  7. Sure looks like it…..


    “Do FEC Records Prove Michael Bloomberg Bought His Way onto the Democrats’ Debate Stage?”

    “On Friday, the Democratic National Committee announced a major change of their debate requirements for the upcoming primary debate February 19 debate in Las Vegas, removing the individual donor threshold, thus opening the door for billionaire Michael Bloomberg to participate. Because Bloomberg is self-funding his campaign, it was impossible for him to meet the 225,000 individual donor threshold to participate in the debates.

    The donor threshold was controversial when it was first rolled out last year, but that doesn’t mean everyone’s happy now that it is gone. Current and former candidates were, in fact, outraged at the news because the DNC refused prior requests to change the rules to ensure more diversity on stage.

    “The DNC didn’t change the rules to ensure good, diverse candidates could remain on the debate stage,” tweeted Elizabeth Warren. “They shouldn’t change the rules to let a billionaire on. Billionaires shouldn’t be allowed to play by different rules—on the debate stage, in our democracy, or in our government.”

    “When @CoryBooker led an effort to change the debate thresholds, the DNC refused — saying they couldn’t benefit any candidate,” former candidate Julian Castro tweeted. “It seems the only candidate they’re willing to benefit is a billionaire who’s buying his way into the race. Total mess.”

    Candidate Tom Steyer said the Democratic Party’s decision to change the rules now “to accommodate Mike Bloomberg and not changing them in the past to ensure a more diverse debate stage is just plain wrong.”

    Tulsi Gabbard’s response was slightly different. Instead of moaning about the Democrats not changing the rules to ensure diversity on stage when Democratic voters apparently preferred older and whiter candidates, she accused Bloomberg of buying the DNC.

    Does Tulsi have a point? Did Bloomberg buy the DNC? According to the Federal Election Commission (FEC) records, she might have a valid point.

    On November 19, 2019, five days before announcing his candidacy, Michael Bloomberg made three donations of $106,500 each to the Democratic National Committee.”

    “These are, in fact, separate donations, and not duplicate entries. If you look at the individual records for each donation, they have unique transaction identification numbers, 34364928, 34364940, and 34364931.

    It is not clear when the requirements for the January debate in Iowa were established, but according to reports, they were announced publicly on December 20, 2019. It is certainly possible the committee had already established the requirements for the January debate when Bloomberg entered the race, but there is definitely reason to be suspicious that Bloomberg’s donations, which totaled $319,500, were effectively used by Bloomberg to influence the DNC to change the rules to favor his candidacy where other candidates’ requests had failed to do so.”


  8. Meanwhile, Bernie and his people suddenly realizes the fix may be in again. 🙂




  9. An interesting theory….. that Bloomberg isn’t really running, but if he does it this way, it gets him out of those pesky campaign finance laws that limits how much he can help other candidates. By self funding his own “campaign” against Trump, he skirts around the rules.


    “Michael Bloomberg Isn’t Really Running For President, And That Should Worry You

    The staff, the ad spending, the campaigning — Michael Bloomberg was going to do all of this to defeat President Donald Trump already. Doing it as a ‘candidate’ exempts him from limits on PACs and political donations.”


    “There is very good reason to believe Michael Bloomberg isn’t actually running for president.

    Of course, there is plenty of evidence to the contrary. For one, he declared he is. He’s also hired more than 1,000 staff and is still expanding, offering salaries far above campaign averages. This week, he became the first of the declared candidates to have campaigned in all 14 states of March 3’s Super Tuesday primary battle, and he’s spent a quarter billion on political advertising so far. All would point toward Bloomberg indeed running for president.

    But here’s the snag: He wanted to do all of this anyway. Everything, that is, but the declaration bit. That, he was loathe to do. But the staff, the ad spending, the campaigning — he was going to do all of this to defeat President Donald Trump already, and we know this because he told us so.

    As early as February 2019, the billionaire pledged he’d spend at least $500 million to defeat the president as either a candidate or as what Politico called “a shadow political party for the Democratic nominee.” That massive spend, the report continued, represents “just 1 percent of Bloomberg’s estimated net worth.”

    Just a month later, the wealthy New Yorker laughed at the idea he would ever run for president, mocking “Amtrak Joe” Biden for apologizing “for being male, over 50 [and] white,” and Beh-tóh O’Rourke, who Bloomberg joked had “apologized for being born.” Well, a few months later he jumped in anyway. But does the world-renowned winner have any intention of actually winning the nomination?

    We might all agree it is strange to hear the hyper-competitive Bloomberg declare he will pay his sizable staff to work on behalf of the people who are supposed to be his primary opponents. His “army of some 500 staffers will march on through the general election in November even if he loses the Democratic nomination, campaign officials [told] NBC News” back when he employed a measly 500 staffers.

    Of course, Bloomberg has said the same of the now $2 billion he’s reportedly willing to spend for any campaign to defeat Trump.

    This magnanimity in defeat doesn’t seem to square with Michael Bloomberg, cut-throat capitalist billionaire, but it does make sense when viewed in the light of his Bloomberg News empire, which loses money every year. The losses don’t seem to bother Bloomberg, because in this aspect of business he is a man who wants his ideas in the world and is willing to pay to make it happen.

    So why declare? Simply put, the billionaire mayor gets a lot more for his money as a candidate than he ever could as a donor or even as the operator of a super PAC.

    First, there are limits to what a donor can give a campaign, and $2 billion is way out of the question. Even so, Bloomberg could pour billions into an organization to sway elections, as Charles Koch and George Soros seek to do. Then, there’s something campaigns have that no PAC has — and that’s access to the best rates the market has to offer.”


  10. Oh, and there was a game on last night.

    If you missed it, here’s all you needed to see.

    A 3 and half hour game, in 13 minutes.


  11. Ruh-roh Joe……



    “Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham said Sunday that he and other Republicans will begin calling witnesses within weeks for hearings related to Hunter Biden’s work in Ukraine, as well as the FBI’s surveillance of former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page.

    “We’re going to get to the bottom of this,” Graham pledged in an interview on Fox News’s “Sunday Morning Futures.”

    In the interview, Graham urged GOP Idaho Sen. Jim Risch, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, to call the chief of staff to former Secretary of State John Kerry to testify about concerns he reportedly raised about Burisma Holdings, a Ukrainian energy company where Biden served as a director.

    Biden joined the firm in 2014, shortly after his father took over as the Obama administration’s main liaison to Ukraine following the overthrow of its pro-Russia president, Viktor Yanukovych.

    Republicans have questioned whether Joe Biden, as vice president in 2016, improperly pressured the Ukrainian government to shut down an investigation into Burisma. Joe Biden and Democrats have accused Republicans of using the Burisma issue to distract from impeachment proceedings against President Donald Trump.

    Democrats allege that Trump pressured Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to open investigations into the Bidens in exchange for military assistance.

    The Senate is poised this coming week to vote to acquit Trump on two articles of impeachment related to his actions toward Ukraine.

    Graham said he also wants to hear from Kerry’s stepson, Christopher Heinz, who was a business partner of Hunter Biden. State Department emails show that Heinz contacted officials at Foggy Bottom on May 13, 2014 to raise red flags about Hunter Biden’s relationship with Burisma, which has been investigated for corruption.

    The South Carolina senator also wants to hear from George Kent, a State Department official who testified in the Trump impeachment hearings that he raised concerns about Burisma in 2016. “


  12. Blaming the tech giants? OK, make your case, but don’t forget the Democrat politicians who enable it all……

    That’s whose most responsible.


    “Liberalism’s ‘cesspit’?: IAN BIRRELL says tech giants have turned San Francisco into a dystopian nightmare of addiction, homelessness and criminality ”

    “Gilles Desaulniers moved to San Francisco 40 years ago, settling in the ‘friendly, quaint and affordable’ city after running out of cash while driving from Canada down the West Coast of America.

    Today he runs a grocery store filled with fresh fruit, vegan snacks and organic wines typical of this famously liberal Californian city.

    But Gilles has shut one outlet and would sell up entirely if anyone wanted this one, his remaining shop.

    Each day, up to 30 people stroll in and openly steal goods, costing him hundreds of dollars.

    He has been bitten twice recently by people in his shop and he also found a woman turning blue in the toilet after a drugs overdose, a hypodermic needle still stuck in her leg.

    He showed me a metal door that is corroding due to people urinating in his doorway, then spoke of finding a man relieving himself in full view of infants playing in a child centre next door.

    ‘Our society is falling apart,’ says Desaulniers.

    ‘If people do not play by some rules, society does not function. But it feels like there is no order, there is no shame.’

    He uses two apocalyptic movies to illustrate the state of his adopted city: ‘Living here feels like A Clockwork Orange and Blade Runner have both come true.’

    I could grasp his despair. I had just passed dealers selling drugs beside a police car parked outside government offices, and seen their customers openly smoke fentanyl, an opioid 50 times stronger than heroin, then collapse on the street.

    All cities have their seedy sides. But this is the very centre of San Francisco, by an upmarket Westfield shopping mall thronged with people in designer clothes perusing Rolex watches, Louis Vuitton handbags and Tiffany jewellery.

    The beautiful city by the bay, where Tony Bennett famously left his heart and which poses as a beacon of progressiveness, has more billionaires per capita than any other on the planet.

    Not long ago, a seven-bedroom home here recently sold for $38 million (£29 million), while at the Michelin-starred Saison restaurant, the ‘kitchen menu’ starts at $298 a head and reservations require a $148 deposit.

    The city authorities have a huge $12 billion budget, handing their 31,800 staff average annual pay and benefit packages of an astonishing $175,000.

    Yet the tide of homeless, addicted and mentally ill people washing up here has become so severe that a global expert on slums claimed San Francisco may be more unsanitary than some of the poorest parts of Africa and Asia.”


    Own it Democrats, this is your fault.


  13. I posted that, and then read this too…..

    Like I said….. own it Dems……


    “San Francisco Public Works Director Arrested On Alleged Public Corruption Charges

    Perhaps part of the reason the streets of San Francisco are covered with feces, needles, and desperation?”

    “We have been following the diseased streets of San Francisco for a while, including the development of a human poop report app and the fact that the city’s residents have to fend off the homeless from in front of their stores and homes.

    Part of the problem may just have been the priorities of its city officials. For example, the Public Works Director, whose staff is tasked with keeping the streets clean, has been arrested on alleged public corruption charges.

    A top San Francisco public official and go-to bureaucrat to mayors over two decades was charged with public corruption Tuesday, upending City Hall as elected leaders scrambled to reassure the public that bribery and kickbacks would not be tolerated.

    The complaint unsealed against San Francisco Public Works Director Mohammed Nuru and longtime restaurateur Nick Bovis focuses on an aborted attempt in 2018 to bribe a San Francisco airport commissioner for retail space.

    It also alleges other schemes in which Nuru is accused of trying to help his friend score contracts to build homeless shelters and portable toilets, along with a restaurant at the city’s new $2 billion transit station.

    Perhaps certain California congressional representatives should check out the case the FBI is bringing against Nuru. This seems a lot like actual bribery!”


  14. Troll level……


    And even better, some of the @$$hats in the media are actually fact checking Trump’s claims….. and yes, turns out, he’s short! 🤣😂🤣



  15. ~ More than anything, this election is about President Trump.

    For most incumbent presidents running for reelection, approval ratings really matter. With Trump, there are several different striking ways to look at those numbers. He’s historically unpopular — the most unpopular incumbent ever to stand for reelection.

    He has a very locked-in base, with sky-high approval in his own party. But those who strongly disapprove of Trump outnumber those who strongly approve. Likewise, no modern president has had such high numbers of people who say they will definitely vote against him for reelection.

    There is tremendous intensity that motivates Trump’s supporters and opponents. Despite the many advantages he has (more on that later), he is incapable of sticking to a message that highlights those benefits. For every tweet about the great economy, there’s another that picks a fight with a movie star or retweets something offensive. Trump remains impulsive and undisciplined — something he thinks works great for him, even though many Republicans (privately) disagree. …

    … While Democrats might hope that Trump is so unpopular that a ham sandwich could beat him, that is not the case. The Democrats’ choice for a nominee matters, because an election is not just a referendum on the incumbent; it’s a binary choice between two candidates. … ~


  16. Also from the NPR piece above:


    … Trump has megabucks to spend, but often overlooked is that the amount the Democratic candidates raised as a group in the last quarter was twice as much as Trump raised during that time. That shows how much grassroots enthusiasm Democrats could tap into if and when they unify behind one candidate. This year there’s the rare possibility that the challenger will not be outspent by the incumbent. Another reason that might be the case this year is Mike Bloomberg.

    Even though he’s unlikely to become the nominee, the former New York City mayor says he will spend up to $1 billion to defeat Trump, even if the nominee is a left-wing candidate like Sanders or Warren. …

    … One unusual factor of Trump’s presidency is that his approval rating has not tracked with the economy in the same way it did for other presidents. But it remains Trump’s greatest strength and Democrats’ greatest challenge. …

    … Socialism has a clear negative connotation to many in the electorate, and Republicans use “socialism” as a dirty word, but it’s not among younger voters — the heart of Sanders’ base in the Democratic Party.

    Still, this debate is occurring at a time when trust in institutions, public and private, remains in the basement. So it’s a challenge for Democrats’ argument that giving government a much bigger role in the economy is a good thing. …

    … It’s possible this will not be an “it’s the economy, stupid” election, but an “it’s the culture, stupid” election.

    Despite his bragging on the economy, Trump is a culture warrior at heart and plans to run another us-against-them campaign, ratcheting up the grievance among his base against East Coast liberal elites, the media, immigrants and kneeling black athletes.

    For many of his supporters — farmers, white evangelicals, non-college-educated rural voters, for instance — economics takes a back seat to the cultural issues Trump champions, including immigration, abortion, school prayer and gun rights. …

    … Every election is determined by who goes to the polls. This year, the shape of the electorate is harder to discern than ever, because it’s likely we’ll see a historically large number of voters. Democrats hope it’s like 2018, when turnout surged among Democratic-leaning groups: Latinos, young voters and, especially, college-educated women.

    Trump, on the other hand, is counting on being able to bring out many more of his core voters — the white working class — who did not show up in 2016. …

    … Also, while the electorate continues to get younger, browner and more female, a lot of those voters live in the wrong states as far as Democratic hopes at winning go. In other words, it doesn’t matter as much if there’s a huge surge in turnout in California and New York (two states where Hillary Clinton got one-fifth of all her votes from); it matters who shows up in Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. In Michigan and Pennsylvania, white, working-class voters make up 56% of eligible voters; in Wisconsin, it’s 61%. …


  17. It’s all about to launch and it’ll be a whirlwind from here on out. From World Magazine’s Sift today:


    Iowa caucuses kick off primary season

    About 200,000 Democrats are expected to gather Monday evening across Iowa to begin the process of picking their party’s challenger to President Donald Trump. The meetings at about 1,600 sites will determine how the state divides its delegates to the Democratic National Convention this summer. Democrats have 41 delegates to dole out, while Trump is expected to win all 40 of the state’s Republican delegates.

    Who is predicted to win among the Democrats? Polling is tight between Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont and former Vice President Joe Biden. Real Clear Politics’ final aggregate of Iowa polls gives a narrow edge to Sanders, with about 25 percent to Biden’s 21 percent. The only other candidates polling in double digits are former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg and Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts. The public will get a better idea of who is in the lead earlier in the night because Democrats have decided to release the results of each round of caucus voting.


  18. ~ As has been the case since 1972, Iowa will hold the first presidential nominating contest in 2020. Its caucuses will be held on February 3. This will be followed by February contests in the other traditionally early voting states of New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina. Super Tuesday follows on March 3. That date will be even more prominent in 2020 as California moves up its traditional June primary. By the end of March, events covering well over 50% of each party’s delegates will have taken place. The Democratic convention is in July, with the GOP following in August. The 2020 presidential election is scheduled for November 3. ~



  19. I’m not a listener, but sad news




    At the end of his show today, Rush Limbaugh revealed that he is fighting stage 4 lung cancer. Rush has posted a transcript of the segment here. I am posting the audio below. Either way, the news is crushing. … He is irreplaceable. There is no one like him. Not close. …


  20. Have to call BS.

    “Trump has megabucks to spend, but often overlooked is that the amount the Democratic candidates raised as a group in the last quarter was twice as much as Trump raised during that time. That shows how much grassroots enthusiasm Democrats could tap into if and when they unify behind one candidate. This year there’s the rare possibility that the challenger will not be outspent by the incumbent. Another reason that might be the case this year is Mike Bloomberg.”

    That’s just false. If you think Bernie’s money and supporters, or Warren’s for that matter, will flow to an establishment candidate like Biden, you’re dreaming. Especially if they continue to rig the game against Bernie and Liz. More of it will go to Trump. Just like happened when Hillary screwed them last time around.

    That’s just not sound analysis. There’s more wrong in the NPR authors “assumptions” in other areas too.



    “… It’s possible this will not be an “it’s the economy, stupid” election, but an “it’s the culture, stupid” election.”

    They lose this battle too. The general voting populace is more in line with Trump culturally than they are elitist Democrats.Whether it’s immigration, abortion, gun rights, whatever, they lose.



    “… Every election is determined by who goes to the polls. This year, the shape of the electorate is harder to discern than ever, because it’s likely we’ll see a historically large number of voters. Democrats hope it’s like 2018, when turnout surged among Democratic-leaning groups: Latinos, young voters and, especially, college-educated women.”

    I will leave you with this……. half the people she mentioned are notorious for not showing on election day. The other half don’t care to answer, or give the easy answer and keep walking.


    “One likely culprit is what pollsters refer to as nonresponse bias. This occurs when certain kinds of people systematically do not respond to surveys despite equal opportunity outreach to all parts of the electorate. We know that some groups – including the less educated voters who were a key demographic for Trump on Election Day – are consistently hard for pollsters to reach. It is possible that the frustration and anti-institutional feelings that drove the Trump campaign may also have aligned with an unwillingness to respond to polls. The result would be a strongly pro-Trump segment of the population that simply did not show up in the polls in proportion to their actual share of the population.

    Some have also suggested that many of those who were polled simply were not honest about whom they intended to vote for. The idea of so-called “shy Trumpers” suggests that support for Trump was socially undesirable, and that his supporters were unwilling to admit their support to pollsters. This hypothesis is reminiscent of the supposed “Bradley effect,” when Democrat Tom Bradley, the black mayor of Los Angeles, lost the 1982 California gubernatorial election to Republican George Deukmejian despite having been ahead in the polls, supposedly because voters were reluctant to tell interviewers that they were not going to vote for a black candidate.

    The “shy Trumper” hypothesis has received a fair amount of attention this year. If this were the case, we would expect to see Trump perform systematically better in online surveys, as research has found that people are less likely to report socially undesirable behavior when they are talking to a live interviewer. Politico and Morning Consult conducted an experiment to see if this was the case, and found that overall, there was little indication of an effect, though they did find some suggestion that college-educated and higher-income voters might have been more likely to support Trump online.

    A third possibility involves the way pollsters identify likely voters. Because we can’t know in advance who is actually going to vote, pollsters develop models predicting who is going to vote and what the electorate will look like on Election Day. This is a notoriously difficult task, and small differences in assumptions can produce sizable differences in election predictions. We may find that the voters that pollsters were expecting, particularly in the Midwestern and Rust Belt states that so defied expectations, were not the ones that showed up. Because many traditional likely-voter models incorporate measures of enthusiasm into their calculus, 2016’s distinctly unenthused electorate – at least on the Democratic side – may have also wreaked some havoc with this aspect of measurement.”


    And one thing she did get right as well,

    “. In other words, it doesn’t matter as much if there’s a huge surge in turnout in California and New York (two states where Hillary Clinton got one-fifth of all her votes from); it matters who shows up in Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. ”

    The left coast and the liberal controlled northeast won’t decide this, real America will.


  21. And this found what I said above to be true…….

    “If you think Bernie’s money and supporters, or Warren’s for that matter, will flow to an establishment candidate like Biden, you’re dreaming.”


    “They lose this battle too. The general voting populace is more in line with Trump culturally than they are elitist Democrats”



    “This One New Poll of Democrats Explains Why Donald Trump Will Be Reelected

    Just 25 percent of Democratic voters want a candidate promising a “bold, new agenda,” which is exactly what party and media elites will cram down their throats.”

    “On the one hand, a new Fox News poll spells doom for Donald Trump, with a fistful of Democratic presidential candidates beating the incumbent. Former Vice President Joe Biden cleans Trump’s clock by 10 percentage points, 49 percent to 39 percent. Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders (I) wins 49 percent to 40 percent. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D–Mass.) ekes out a 43 percent-to-41 percent victory. And Sen. Kamala Harris (D–Calif.) and South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg both squeeze out a 1-point margin, 42 percent to 41 percent.

    On the other, more consequential hand, that same poll underscores why Trump is almost certainly going to win reelection in 2020. One of the questions asked Democratic voters whether they will vote for a candidate with a “bold, new agenda” or one “who will provide steady, reliable leadership.” Fully three-quarters of respondents want the latter, with just 25 percent interested in the sort of “bold, new agenda” that virtually all Democratic candidates are peddling so far. This finding is consistent with other polling that shows that Democratic voters are far more moderate than their candidates. Even allowing for a doubling of self-described Democrats who identify as liberal over the past dozen years, Gallup found last year that 54 percent of Democrats support a party that is “more moderate” while just 41 percent want one that is “more liberal.”

    “Yet with the exception of Joe Biden (more on him in a minute), all of the Democratic candidates—certainly the leading ones—are pushing a massively expansionist agenda, thus putting themselves at odds with their own base. Bernie Sanders’ Medicare for All would cost $37 trillion in new spending over a decade and his free-college plan would cost the federal government about $47 billion a year. He plans to spend much, much more, as does Elizabeth Warren, who is running on promises to spend $3.3 trillion over a decade in new giveaways that will be paid for by an unworkable, probably unconstitutional “wealth tax” that will at best raise $2.75 trillion.

    To greater and lesser degrees, the other Democratic candidates are also offering variations on the big government or “bold, new agenda” theme. For this, they get massive online attaboys, which makes it seem as if there is a groundswell of support for such positions. Based on data from The Hidden Tribes Project, which uses polling and survey data to get a truer sense of voter and partisan ideology, The New York Times reported that the “outspoken group of Democratic-leaning voters on social media is outnumbered, roughly 2 to 1, by the more moderate, more diverse and less educated group of Democrats who typically don’t post political content online.” That same dynamic plays out in the more-traditional commentariat as well. Writing in The New Republic, Alex Pareene takes it as a given that the Democrats should nominate a big-spending president and effusively praises Elizabeth Warren especially for demonizing specific individuals and companies. Despite her weak poll numbers, Politico claims that Warren is now a “potential compromise nominee,” a fantasy belied by the small number of actual Democrats interested in anything resembling a “bold, new agenda.”


    And sleepy Joe inspires no one.


  22. I thought it was a very fair analysis. Sorry.

    Sometimes we have to step back from our own biases — and that’s the case on both sides. It’s not easy, I know. But recognizing that we’re seeing things through a particular set of lenses is always the starting point.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. As for who’s going to win in November, it’s far too soon to project, especially with such an evenly divided electorate. I think Trump has a good shot and winning re-election. But I’m not rich enough to place any money on that one just yet. Let’s wait until there’s a Democrat nominee and a general election campaign is underway. And what happens in the news cycle, globally and otherwise.

    All kinds of things can happen between now and November, as any political consultant worth his or her salt will tell you.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. DJ,

    No, overall it was pretty good. But some of those assumptions she made (the ones I noted) will find her far out in the wilderness from actual reality come voting time. We know how badly it played out for those folks last time too that made these assumptions and generalizations. It didn’t turn out well. 🙂

    And let’s not forget, there’s another shoe to drop here. Several in fact. Durhams cases in reference to the first Dem hoax, Russia, the fraud FISA warrants, and this info which will come out, and will sully up the current leader, Biden. November is a long way away.


    “Lindsey Graham Wants Senate Intelligence Committee to Call Whistleblower ‘to Understand How All This Crap Started’

    “The day of reckoning is coming.””




  25. AJ: ” … far out in the wilderness from actual reality come voting time”

    Only time, world and national events, and what is sometimes/often a fickle electorate will tell on that front. We’ll talk the day after the election 🙂 At that point we’ll see how it all shakes out. Predicting beforehand, especially in our current volatile political environment, is very tricky.


  26. Further proof.

    “Pew Research: Dems On Twitter Are More Liberal And More Likely To Support Warren, Sanders”

    And more likely to vote Trump if they think the Dems rigged it against them. 🙂


    “Twitter is not the real world. If you’ve spent any time on Twitter arguing about politics then you probably already know this. But a new survey by Pew Research has confirmed that Democrats on Twitter are both further to the left and less interested in finding middle-ground with Republicans than Democrats who don’t use the platform.

    A 56% majority of Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents who use Twitter describe their political views as liberal or very liberal. This share is substantially larger than the 41% of non-Twitter Democrats who describe themselves in this way.

    Differences between Democrats on and off Twitter extend beyond ideology. About two-thirds of Democrats who do not use Twitter (65%) say it is more important for a Democratic candidate to seek common ground with Republicans, even if it means giving up some things Democrats want. A smaller share of Twitter-using Democrats (54%) take this view; 45% prefer a candidate who will push hard for policies Democrats want, even if it makes it much harder to get some things done.

    Naturally, this divide winds up shaping who Democrats support, with Twitter progressives being far more likely to support Sanders or Warren:

    Democrats on Twitter are 11 points less likely to name Joe Biden as their first choice for the nomination than Democrats who are not on Twitter. By contrast, candidates such as Elizabeth Warren (+8) and Bernie Sanders (+7) receive higher levels of support among Twitter-using Democrats than among those who are not Twitter users. For Biden and Warren, differences in support between Twitter users and non-users hold even after accounting for factors such as age, education and political ideology.

    Here’s a chart put together by Pew to show the on vs. off Twitter comparison for leading candidates:”


  27. I cut myself off at the end.

    The point being this is a win for Trump either way. If it’s Sanders or Warren that win the nomination, they alienate the more moderate majority and make Trump more appealing and less radical. If they stiff Sanders and Warren, their supporters go to Trump just for spite, as many did last time around when they felt Clinton stiffed ’em.

    There is no candidate currently running that will unite all sides of the Dem caucus. Bloomberg is and always will be an R to the hard left, and we already know how they’d feel about Hillary or Lurch stepping in, so I really don’t see how they can beat Trump if things continue on their present course. 🙂


  28. Oh boy…..

    You had one job…..



  29. Sounds like a hoot. 🙂



  30. It’s a slow speed train wreck. 🙂


    And now we know why the Des Moines Register pulled their last poll. They didn’t like the results, but it sounds like it was actually pretty accurate. 🙂


  31. Re the poll – from WSJ article:


    ~ “Nothing is more important to the Register and its polling partners than the integrity of the Iowa Poll,” Carol Hunter, the Register’s executive editor, wrote on the newspaper’s website. “It appears a candidate’s name was omitted in at least one interview in which the respondent was asked to name their preferred candidate.”

    The name of Pete Buttigieg, the former mayor of South Bend, Ind., was left out of an interview, and it was unclear if other candidates may have been omitted, according to a person familiar with the situation. The problem involved a call center that conducted the surveys, the person said.

    Lis Smith, Mr. Buttigieg’s communications director, confirmed on Twitter the involvement of their campaign in the situation.

    “Our campaign received a report from a recipient of the Iowa Poll call, raising concerns that not every candidate was named by the interviewer when asked who they support,” she said. “We shared this with the organizations behind the poll, who conducted an internal investigation and determined not to release it. We applaud CNN and the Des Moines Register for their integrity.” ~


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