The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Monday, September 30, 2019

Pandora's Box

The Dems and their trained hamsters in the media have not yet reached "peak crazy," but they're hurtling toward it. Fast-tracking their impeachment inquiry in a desperate attempt to remove Donald Trump from office before the country votes in November, 2020 they will be met not by a gentleman Republican (think: Romney or McCain) who will accept Democrat accusations and vilification with grace, hoping that the public will see that conservatives are better people than their opposition. Rather, they will encounter Trump, a man who is perfectly willing to use equally vicious and combative tactics to defend himself and his presidency. It will get ugly and it will get there quickly.

The Dems don't seem to realize that they are vulnerable, very vulnerable. Their effort to remove Trump opens the door to inquiries that go back to Hillary Clinton's 'pay for play' grift while she was Secretary of State; the very questionable history of the DNC email hack; the Dems' multiple efforts to enlist the Ukrainians in taking down Paul Manafort and then Donald Trump; the soft coup attempt that enlisted senior executives in the FBI and national intelligence agencies, the failed efforts to promote a Russian collusion hoax, and much more.

Victor Davis Hanson offers the following predictions:
Impeachment, remember, will make the Kavanaugh hearings look like a seminar on etiquette, and so everything and anything can happen once dozens of unhinged leftists are unbound.

Be prepared for a half-dozen Christine Blasey Ford-type witnesses to pop up, and 20 or so unhinged Cory Booker-esque “I am Spartacus” performance acts, along with a whole slew of new Steele dossiers—all interspersed with breathless CNN bulletins announcing new fake news developments with “the walls are closing in” and “the end is near” prognostications. Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) is already reading fantasies to the House Intelligence Committee and passing them off as the text of Trump’s phone call to Ukraine’s new president. Only after he was called on such absurdities did he describe his performance as a parody.

The Left is hellbent on impeachment and the absence of a case won’t matter. They do not care if they will sow the wind and reap the whirlwind.

In the coming days, after all, we will probably learn that the whistleblower’s “Schiff dossier” was prepared by ex-Lawfare-type lawyers in service to House Democrats, who just needed a vessel to pass off the hit as a genuine cry of the heart, rather than a scripted attack with all the Steele dossier/Mueller report/Comey memo fingerprints: classification obfuscations, footnotes to liberal media hit pieces, pseudo-scholarly references to court cases, and lawsuit-avoiding, preemptive disclaimers about not actually possessing firsthand knowledge of any of the evidence, prepped hearsay, supposition, and the subjunctive and optative mood composition.

In a sane world, the impeachers would worry their charges that Trump forced Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky to investigate his possible 2020 Democratic opponent Joe Biden might boomerang. After all, Trump never actually cut off Ukrainian aid. Nor did he outline a quid pro quo deal. Essentially he is accused of unduly asking a foreign president to clamp down on corruption in his midst going back to 2016. So what? Especially if there is something more to the strange antics of Hunter Biden and CrowdStrike.
In their frenzy to reach peak crazy, Dems have opened their own Pandora's box, a container filled with a proof of Democrat dishonesty, corruption, and yes, collusion, that will not reflect well on those who have opened it. They've decided that the political gutter is where they want to be. Okay then, let the games begin.

Sunday, September 29, 2019

Peak Crazy

It seems that whenever you think the Democrats and their trained hamsters in the media have reached peak crazy, they do something even more nutty to make you a liar. For example, I though peak crazy was reached when the Dem's attempted to destroy the reputation of a nominee for SCOTUS, Bret Kavanaugh, because they didn't like the fact that he was a conservative. During a Senate hearing that displayed their pre-disposition for the politics of personal destruction, they insisted that we all believe Christine Blasey-Ford even though her evidence=-free accusations were 35 years old, bizarre on their face, unsupported by friends and acquaintances who knew her at the time, and suspicious given that she lied about things like being afraid to fly. But as if to prove me wrong, the Dem candidates for President then relied on poorly researched and obviously partisan book on the Kavanaugh hearings that suggested that when he was in college (30 years ago) the now-Justice wagged his penis in the face of a woman (who by the way, told the writers that she remembered no such incident). The Dem candidates demanded Kavanaugh's impeachment based on ... well ... nothing.

And speaking of impeachment. It was okay, I suppose, when leftist crazies like the Squad demanded impeachment of Trump, because, well ... Trump. Many thought we had reached peak crazy on the subject. But nope. Now the whole of the Dem hierarchy are on board because of a phone call. No matter that lots and lots and lots of suspicious stuff has gone on in the past few months including: (1) a secret and conveniently timed rule change within the intelligence community that allowed hearsay to be introduced as evidence by a whistleblower; (2) a "whistle blower" who the IG noted is arguably partisan and who unquestionably got help in prepared his/her report in a way that made it look like a brief to the Supreme Court; (3) the fact that Joe Biden in his own words admitted to obstructing an investigation into his son's Ukrainian dealings, and (4) serious questions about why the younger Biden was paid $50K a month to consult on energy matters he knew nothing about. Given these questions and a whole lot more, it's truly crazy to suggest that impeachment is a reasonable political response, but ... well ... crazy is as crazy does.

Roger Kimball comments:
Just last week, an all-points bulletin was blaring from the Get Trump media and the assorted fantasists in the Democratic Party. “Now we’ve got him, lads. Impeachment is just around the corner.” The New York Times said so. So did CNN and MSNBC. So did Nancy Pelosi, soon-to-be-former speaker of the House. Representative Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) was so certain of it that he thought he could get away with pretending to read the transcript of Donald Trump’s call with the Ukrainian president while actually just making stuff up.

Really. There he was, piece of paper in hand, addressing the House Intelligence Committee (and millions of viewers at home), exuding his signature “the-President-is-not-above-the-law-deer-in-the-headlights-automaton” countenance. The whole thing, Schiff said, was a “mafia-like shakedown.”

“I want you,” he pretended to read, “to make up dirt on my political opponent, understand, lots of it, on this and on that. I’m going to put you in touch with people, not just any people, I’m going to put you in touch with the attorney general of the United States, my attorney general Bill Barr. He’s got the whole weight of the American law enforcement behind him.”

When it was pointed out that Donald Trump said none of that, Schiff replied that his words—his lies—were a “parody.” Oh.

In general, one tends to admire perseverance. We like to think it betokens a certain seriousness of purpose. We remember The Little Engine That Could from our childhood and want to root for the blundering but stalwart underdog. “I think I can, I think I can, I think I can.” But in this case, the Democrats are not bringing the Christmas presents of impeachment and the destruction of a duly elected president they dislike to the boys and girls on the other side of the mountain. On the contrary, they are making fools of themselves. What we are seeing unfold before our eyes is not a reprise of The Little Engine That Could but a signal illustration of Chesterton’s observation that madness means “using mental activity so as to reach mental helplessness.”
The Dem's trained hamsters in the media are scurrying around trying to make crazy look like sober, considered thought. It's absolutely comical to watch. They keep telling us the Biden and son are NOT the story, that despite the hard evidence that payments to young Biden were made and demands to obstruct justice by Biden-the-older resulted in the dismissal of a prosecutor inverstigationg corruption in the Ukraine (oh, BTW, Biden was Vice President of the United States at the time he obstructed justice), there's nothing to see here. The Dems and their hamsters keep telling us that Trump's concern was purely to "get" his potential 2020 opponent—as if a brief mention in an otherwise unrelated phone conversation was somehow infinitely more serious than the phony Russian dossier bought and paid for by Hillary Clinton and the DNC in 2016. And as if to punctuate peak crazy, that episode doesn't seem to concern the Dems.

Kimball goes on to discuss the bigger picture:
I think Thomas Lifson, writing for The American Thinker, is right. The whoops of the impeachment war dance are echoing in an otherwise silent and most severe chamber. All this frenetic activity—the screaming front-page headlines, the salivating attacks on Trump in the now-routinely anti-Trump Drudge Report—all that, as Lifson says, is but the “prelude to the coming time bombs about to explode in their faces.”

The bombs in question, Lifson points out, have names: Michael Horowitz, the Justice Department inspector general whose report on malfeasance in the FBI and the “intelligence community” is due any day; John Durham, the U.S. attorney looking into the origins of the attempted coup against Donald Trump; and John Huber, the U.S. attorney who is looking into the FBI’s surveillance of Carter Page and connections between the Clinton Foundation and the Uranium One scandal.

Those time bombs are indeed ticking, and even the Dems must be able to make out the tick-tick-tick above the fury of their anti-Trump skirling. Some people say that what we are witnessing is just an instance of hardball politics. They hate us, we hate them, let the game begin.

I think it is much worse than that. There were plenty of hints and adumbrations before, but it really took shape with Donald Trump. What we have seen over the last few years is an effort to render a large part (indeed, a majority) of the electorate illegitimate.

Donald Trump won the presidency in a free, open, and democratic election. And yet a sliver of the population—the Antifa thugs, the Hollywood brats, the media sissies, the beautiful people with expensive degrees, and, of course, the radical fringe of the Democratic Party—all refused to accept the results of the election.

It’s not just that they disliked Donald Trump. They declared him illegitimate. By implication, they declared anyone who supported Trump illegitimate, too. In essence, they bowed out of the social compact that underwrote the legitimacy of the American regime ...

What has been happening these last three years is not just an effort to destroy Donald Trump. That, indeed, is merely incidental to the larger project of destroying the fundamental American consensus. I do not think it will succeed. But I am sufficiently disillusioned to realize just how grave a threat these forces pose to what we used to be able to call, without irony, the American dream.
The threat is real and unprecedented. It is crazy. But with the new leftist Democratic party, it appears that we'll never reach peak crazy.

Friday, September 27, 2019


In their crazed, ever-changing attempts to rid the nation of a duly-elected president, the Democrats have achieved a two-fer. The party base has now been taken over by far-left activists, and they will not be denied. They dislike Joe Biden intensely. Sure, not like the red-hot hatred with which they view Donald Trump, but still a dislike that is palpable. Biden is old school, a moderate, and that gets in the way of their vision of a socialist Utopia with leadership that will put big government at the center of all of our lives, reducing freedoms once held dear, controlling speech and thought, wrecking our economy, and encouraging the flight of capital outside our borders, which have been opened to all. Biden, therefore, is a problem.

Using this latest Ukrainian phone call "scandal" as a way to remove Trump from office also sullies Biden with the taint of ethical, if not criminal, lapses. The Dem base hopes for a two-fer — Bye, Bye, Joe. Bye, Bye Donald.

Kim Strassel comments:
The Trump years have been rough on Democrats’ sensibilities, and their thinking has become increasingly addled as a result. The party has worked tirelessly to create an issue worthy of impeaching the president—Russia collusion, obstruction of justice, Stormy Daniels, tax returns. This week Democrats jettisoned all that in favor of the only issue that implicates their own front-runner for the nomination. Genius.

The one person who has been as much in the news this week as Donald Trump is former Vice President Joe Biden. It’s a dubious accomplishment. The only way to discuss Mr. Trump’s nonsmoking-gun phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is to acknowledge the subject of the ruckus: Mr. Biden’s glaring conflicts of interest during his vice presidency vis-à-vis his son Hunter’s business interests. Since Democrats insist on making this all about Ukraine, get ready for daily new revelations about the young Mr. Biden’s questionable activities and “Quid Pro Joe’s” involvement.

This is why the former vice president’s promises that this scandal will fade are nonsense. True, the media is doing double-duty on his behalf. Its general line is that Mr. Biden’s conflicts are fine; asking about them is corrupt. We are seeing a lot of stories about how Democrats are determined not to let Republicans “Hillary” Mr. Biden—a historical rewrite that places the blame for Mrs. Clinton’s notorious ethical travails on her rivals. The “fact checkers” are out in force with soothing assurances that there’s no evidence any Biden broke the law.
It's very likely that in the fever swamp of Democratic strategy, the House will vote out articles of impeachment over a phone call that by any rational reading, was meaningless. The Dems are willing to put the country through all of this because they are unwilling to propose policies and candidates that can defeat Trump at the ballot box—a mere 14 months away. Their actions are not simply hard-ball politics, rather they are grotesque and disgusting.

If the Dems succeed in their effort to impact the election, not by proposing better ideas and solutions, but via "impeachment" dishonesty and innuendo, politics, already ugly in this country, will morph into a hellscape of phony accusations and hoax allegations. They are far too deranged to realize that what goes around comes around. When they do return to power, they will be attacked in the same way. That's not good for the country, but given their recent actions, it's apparent the Dems don't much care about that.

Richard Fernandez (@wretchardthecat) tweets:
The unfortunate nature of a power struggle is not about who's right, but who is stronger and more ruthless.
The Dems have that sage wisdom on their side.

They are stronger in the sense that the have an array of tools (the media, the arts, academia, entertainment, and even the deep state) that they can bring to bear to defeat their enemy. All of those tools define the narrative and do so with a venom that exhausts all but the very strongest opponent.

They are significantly more ruthless. The Dems are not only willing, but enthusiastic about using lies and the politics of personal destruction to ruin and defeat their opponents by any means necessary.

Their quest for power is paramount. It's all consuming, and it's driving them to collective insanity. That's particularly frightening if you give them even a small chance of grasping the reins of power.


As the Dems and their trained hamsters in the media tell us that our republic has been threatened by a "whistle blower report" that is momentous, Victor David Hansen does a little analysis:
The whistleblower admits to hearsay (“I was not a direct witness to most of the events described”). His term-paper report is laden with anonymously sourced rumors, e.g., “According to multiple White House officials I spoke with,” “I was told by White House officials,” “Based on my understanding,” “I learned from multiple officials,” “I do not know whether similar measures were taken,” “I do not know whether those officials spoke with or met with . . . ”

Between references to Internet news accounts and “I heard from” and “I learned from” and “I do not know” anonymous officials, there is nothing here to launch an impeachment of any president.

In the complaint are all the now-familiar tell-tale signs of pseudo-exactness, in the form of Mueller-report-like footnotes and page references to liberal media outlets such as Bloomberg, ABC, and the New York Times. There is the accustomed Steele-dossier scare bullet points. We see again Comey-memo-like disputes over classification status with capital letters UNCLASSIFIED stamped as headers and footers and TOP SECRET lined out.

Scary references abound to the supposed laws that the legal-eagle whistleblower believes were violated. In sum, there is all the usual evidence of an administrative-state bureaucrat, likely to be some third-tier Brennan or Clapper-like intelligence operative, who is canvassing disgruntled White House staffers, writing a report that imitates intelligence-department formats, combing the Internet, in “dream-team” and “all-star” footnote fashion, for scare quotes and anti-Trump stories, and then likely having it dressed up in legalese by an activist lawyer. Take all that away, and one is left with “I heard.”

After nearly three years of this, we know the delivery system that ensues. Along with the sensationalized initial media hype, the promised “smoking gun” leak usually follows. But when the “overwhelming” evidence or “walls are closing in” documents are released, there is no criminal act to be found other than occasional art-of-the-deal bluster from Trump. And then on to the next crude coup attempt, since the line of wannabe Glen Simpsons, Bruce Ohrs, Andrew McCabes, and John Brennans seems endless.
The Dems are persistent, no doubt, but they are also shameless. Power is what they want, and based on the history of false accusations levied over the past 30 months, they will stop at nothing to get it.


The Legal Insurrection blog looks at the backstory and also comments on the ramifications of the actions of "moles in government:"
The left grew used to having opponents of a certain type [e.g. John McCain, Mitt Romney who were 'gentlemen and would never push back on the vicious and often deranged attacks that often come out of the left], and Trump most definitely is not of that type. That’s why the NeverTrumpers [in the GOP] hate him, too, perhaps even more than the left does, because the NeverTrumpers were (and are) of that type as well.

They all feel deeply betrayed, not so much by Trump as by the American people who chose him and repudiated them. And the people must not be allowed to get away with it.

Impeachment is just one part of the war against Trump that has been waged relentlessly since the day he was elected and even before. This latest issue regarding Trump’s conversation with Zelensky is notable for many things, but one of them is the evidence it gives of the relentless surveillance of Trump by moles in government willing to report every single thing he does that might be capitalized on by the anti-Trump forces. Trump can trust no one, and no foreign head of state who talks to him can trust that their communication will not be broadcast to the world.

This is not good for the country, but the Democrats think it’s very good for them.

Thursday, September 26, 2019


On numerous occasions during the last 30 months, we've seen the Democrats and their trained hamsters in the media promote a Russian collusion hoax while at the same time doing everything possible to cover-up a soft coup initiated during the Obama administration, coordinated by the FBI and CIA, and participated in by the Clinton campaign, the DNC and ... the Russians. To make matters worse, the Clinton campaign actually paid for a dossier derived from questionable Russian sources containing false information about Donald Trump. The Dems and their trained hamsters in the media were notably disinterested in any of that.

Now, however, they're crazed over a single Trump phone call with the Ukrainian president asking whether Joe Biden used influence (either direct or indirect) to channel big money to his son—a man who was hired as an energy "consultant" by a shady Ukrainian company for $50K a month (!) but who had no background or expertise in energy matters. While Vice president of the United States, Biden also had a Ukrainian prosecutor removed from an investigation that may have led to his son by threatening to withhold aid to the Ukraine — obstruction, anyone?

The trained hamsters have consistently gotten everything wrong about political influence in the 2016 general election. They have relied on innuendo, phony and/or biased sources, and a purposeful lack of context, serious omissions, and outright lies in their attempt to destroy Donald Trump. They have failed, and they're crazed by that failure.

Kimberly Strassel of The Wall Street Journal is a true journalist and has gotten just about everything right vis a vis the Russian collusion hoax. She broke major parts of the crossfire-hurricane scandal and has been fearless in her reporting. In the aftermath of the Democrat House careening toward impeachment, she tweets about the phone call transcript and the rush to impeach the president

@KimStrassel ... Most Democrats and most of the media have never accepted Mr. Trump as a legitimate President... so they have looked every day since Election Night in 2016 for some reason to expel him from office.

@KimStrassel ... 1) Having read DOJ’s Trump-Ukraine release, here’s the real story: This is another internal attempt to take out a president, on the basis of another non-smoking-gun.

@KimStrassel ... 2) As to call transcript itself: Trump’s actual “favor” is that Ukraine look backward, to what happened in the 2016 election. This is a legitimate ask, since election meddling looks to have come from both Russia and Ukraine.

@KimStrassel ... 3) (Indeed, this is a big enough issue that we find out this morning that U.S. Attorney John Durham is looking at what role the Ukraine played in the FBI investigation.)

@KimStrassel ... 4) It is actually Zelensky who brings up Rudy Giuliani—saying they can’t wait to “meet him.” And it is Zelensky who references “that investigation,” as he goes on to promise that “all investigations will be done openly and candidly.”

@KimStrassel ... 5) Trump says “good” and expresses worries that a “good” prosecutor was “shut down.” Mentions “Biden’s son” and that Biden bragged he “stopped the prosecution.” Ends that bit with “It sounds horrible to me.”

@KimStrassel ... 6) Trump's several references to Giuliani are mostly to say what a great guy he is. He says he will have Giuliani and AG Barr call. He asks Zelensky to speak/work with both.

@KimStrassel ... 7) And, never mind, because: DOJ in statement says the President has not spoken to AG about investigating Biden and has not asked the AG to contact the Ukraine. Also, Barr has not communicated with Ukraine—“on this or any subject.”

@KimStrassel ... 8) Meanwhile, the IG back in August referred this to DOJ as potential violation of campaign finance law, based on whistleblower complaint. Criminal Division evaluated and determined no violation: “All relevant components of the Department agreed with this legal conclusion.”

@KimStrassel ... 9) Whistleblower? Look at this nugget, referenced in the OLC opinion. The IG’s review found "some indicia of an arguable political bias on the part of the Complainant in favor of a rival political candidate.”

@KimStrassel ... 10) Media got all this so wrong. And Democrats look all the more partisan and radical to have moved toward impeachment.
Another journalist who has also been consistently accurate in her reporting throughout the past 30 months is Mollie Hemingway. In response to the Dem's dishonest histrionics of the past two days, she writes:
Prior to the release of the transcript, media and other Democrats misrepresented the phone call as an abuse of office. It is unclear how a United States president attempting to get to the bottom of foreign interference in democratic U.S. elections constitutes an abuse of power, as many Democrats have alleged in recent days. The focus on the phone call comes ahead of the much-anticipated release of an Inspector General report on political spying abuses by the Obama administration as well as declassification of materials expected to detail efforts to spy on the Obama administration’s political opponents using false information ...

The Department of Justice confirmed today that Ukraine’s role in 2016 election meddling is being investigated and that some Ukrainians are already cooperating with the probe. “A Department of Justice team led by U.S. Attorney John Durham is separately exploring the extent to which a number of countries, including Ukraine, played a role in the counterintelligence investigation directed at the Trump campaign during the 2016 election,” DOJ spokeswoman Kerri Kupec said in a statement. “While the Attorney General has yet to contact Ukraine in connection with this investigation, certain Ukrainians who are not members of the government have volunteered information to Mr. Durham, which he is evaluating.”
Hmmm. Looks like the Dems are scrambling to re-direct their trained hamsters away from Ukrainian interference in the 2016 election and toward bogus allegations that a single phone call is tantamount to election interference. Again, it does appear that Joe Biden used his influence as Vice President to enrich his son—and that's against the law, but ... whatever.

But there's more and the Dems are scrambling to make it go away. Here's conservative commentator Rush Limbaugh on "Crowdstrike," a private security firm that the Dems hired to investigate their allegation of hacking into their server in 2016. Note that the DNC did NOT allow the FBI to investigate. That in itself is intriguing.
CrowdStrike is alleged to have gotten something big wrong about Ukraine. CrowdStrike accused Russia of hacking a Ukrainian artillery app resulting in heavy losses, even though Ukraine has no incentive to help Russia, which is attacking them. Ukraine said it never happened. And yet CrowdStrike was asserting that Russia hacked a Ukrainian artillery app. How do I know this? Well, Andy McCarthy’s written about this in his book Ball of Collusion. Here’s the short little passage that’s relevant.

“CrowdStrike widely believed to have been wrong in a controversial 2016 judgment when it claimed that Russia hacked a Ukrainian artillery app resulting in heavy losses of howitzers in combat against separatists used by Moscow.” That’s a pretty big thing to be wrong about, and the only reason to point it out is, okay, if they’re wrong about that, what if the Democrat National Committee server was not hacked?

Do you realize how convenient it was for them to be able to say that Russia hacked their server and then link Trump to Russia? The FBI never assumed that because they never got to investigate it. So the presence of CrowdStrike, Trump asking the president of Ukraine to look into CrowdStrike as well as Biden and his son.

Now, just a little bit more about CrowdStrike ’cause I have paid attention, there’s not a single — I haven’t seen a single report focus on CrowdStrike in this transcript. Now, I know why the Democrats are ignoring it. The Democrats are bent out of shape that Trump even knows about CrowdStrike. They think Trump’s an idiot. With Trump specifically zeroing in on CrowdStrike the Democrats have learned today, after reading that transcript, what Trump is really doing here.

Trump is soliciting assistance from allies all over the world to help Barr prove the scam run against him. That’s what’s going on. That’s what the Democrats have learned today with that word “CrowdStrike” being in the transcript. CrowdStrike, the founder of CrowdStrike is a Russian emigre who hates Putin with a purple passion. It seems to color CrowdStrike’s security work.
If this is true (and that's a big IF), the Dems have once again allowed TDS to guide their strategy and in the end, have opened a can of worms that may yield very unpleasant information about them and their actions. We'll see.

It's also apparent that the new Democratic party has no shame. They have been consistently wrong about every important accusation leveled against Donald Trump. They have outright lied about many of his statements, lied about Russian collusion, lied about obstruction of justice and will now lie about the Ukrainian phone call. When they are proven wrong, there is never an apology, only the next outright lie along with specious allegations of wrongdoing. A significant percentage of independents already understand this. A growing number of African Americans and Latinos are street smart and understand an attempt to railroad someone who has made their economic lives much better. And a small, but growing number of moderate Dems no longer recognize their party and have decided to #Walkaway. Good.


I have written on numerous occasions (e.g., here) that the Dems will take impeachment off the shelf if and when the results of major investigations of the soft coup conducted against Donald Trump begin to be made public. The results of these investigations will be damning and the Dems have to give their trained hamsters in the media a reason to look away. Funny, how that seems to be happening right now. The IG report on the soft coup is due to be released within a few weeks. Hmmm.


The editors of the Wall Street Journal are no friends of Donald Trump and have criticized him repeatedly over the past 30 months. After exposing Trump's phone call as the nothingburger it is, this is what they write:"
If Democrats want to pursue impeachment on this thin gruel, then Americans should also consider the process by which this became a national political crisis. First a whistleblower who is still unidentified brings a complaint based on what he heard about a President’s phone call. By the way, the OLC memo says in passing that the IG’s review acknowledges “some indicia of an arguable political bias on the part of the Complainant in favor of a rival political candidate.”

Then the IG makes a flawed legal judgment that Congress must see the complaint. When his argument is rebutted, word leaks to the press, Congress cries coverup, and suddenly we are putting the country through another impeachment upheaval.

Is anyone else troubled that this is all it takes to impeach a President? If a bureaucrat who dislikes a President can trigger a complaint based on hearsay that forces the disclosure of presidential diplomacy, the conduct of foreign policy will be severely hampered. Democratic Presidents won’t be spared once Republicans figure out how this works.

Mr. Trump’s refusal to abide by the normal guardrails of presidential decorum is often offensive. It can also be risky—for himself and U.S. interests. We have often criticized him for it. But impeaching a President is voting to annul an election, and that should require far more evidence than we have from this Ukraine phone call.

Democrats may not be able to stop themselves now that Speaker Nancy Pelosi has joined the impeachment parade. But the voters should ask if impeachment on these terms will do far more harm to American democracy than Mr. Trump’s bad judgment.
Voters should also ask themselves something else. The Dems are now a party that is intent of using "thin gruel" as a means to negate a legitimate election. They bounce from from one manufactured partisan hoax to another as each is exposed as nonsense. Their dishonesty is exceeded only by their viciousness. Ask yourself—Do they deserve to lead? I submit that they do not.

Wednesday, September 25, 2019


It's hardly shocking that left-wing Democrats have now taken over the Democratic party. Driven by (1) an inability to accept the results of the last presidential election, (2) a serious case of Trump Derangement Syndrome, and (3) an intense hatred for a president who fights back against the myriad "hoax" accusations that have been leveled at him, they now demand impeachment. Fine. Now the public at large will have to decide:
  • Does a party that could rid the country of a "criminal" president by winning the next election have to resort to a political maneuver that will roil the country and wind up accomplishing nothing?
  • Does a party that cares more about rutting in the gutter to destroy a president they don't like deserve to govern our country?
  • Does a party that is composed of proven liars (think: Adam Schiff) who promulgated a Russian conspiracy hoax (judged such by their own special counsel) deserve to lead?
  • Has a party that has accomplished exactly nothing legislatively since taking over the House in 2018 demonstrated that they can achieve anything that benefits the American people?
  • Will a party that has demonstrated viciousness coupled with horrendously bad judgement in the Brett Kavenaugh hearings and then in the subsequent "redo" of recent weeks demonstrated the right temperament to lead?
  • And now, has a party that is careening toward impeachment based on the flimsiest of evidence, demonstrated anything other than desperation in their attempt to depose a sitting president rather than defeat him at the ballot box.
But the Left demands impeachment so the Dems and their trained hamsters in the media follow. It's both pathetic and concerning, but not the least bit surprising. In fact, it's the culmination of 30 months of deranged behavior on the part of the left-wing Democratic party.

I'm hopeful that the 2020 Democrats will be punished in exactly the same way that the 1998 Republicans were punished when they ginned up an impeachment inquiry against another successful president, Bill Clinton. The Dems don't think that will happen. I have faith in the American people and their innate sense of fair play. Therefore, I suspect this will be far worse for the Dems that it is for Donald Trump.

Tuesday, September 24, 2019


This past weekend, we were presented with yet another self-congratulatory awards show, the Emmys, designed to promote the 'artistic' accomplishments of the Hollywood glitterati. Thankfully, there was only a smattering of de rigour political posturing, but the entertainment industry in general, and the Hollywood glitterati in particular, have promoted the Left's narratives with even more fervor than usual during the age of Trump. Whether it's virtue signaling during an awards ceremony, tweeting an anti-Trump meme, or otherwise participating in moral preening (while doing almost exactly the opposite in their personal lives), Hollywood celebrities are the darlings of the media and far-too-often, lionized by the general public.

Jim Geraughty comments:
The cultural power of celebrities — or more specifically, the average American’s misplaced trust in the judgment of people who they recognize from being on television or in the movies or hearing their music — is profoundly disturbing. I suspect that the process of becoming a celebrity is almost inherently psychologically damaging. They enjoy the cheers and adoration of large crowds but have difficulty developing and sustaining real behind-the-scenes relationships. Their fans love the characters they play, sometimes oblivious to the fact that the actor is not the character. Most of them are constantly evaluated based upon their appearance by strangers, developing all kinds of obsessions and disorders and frequently going under the knife to preserve their youthful looks. Their ideas for maintaining good health would give the American Medical Association nightmares. Addictions flourish and are almost endlessly enabled. Almost everyone they encounter wants something from them — an autograph, a picture, sex, to read a script, to play a role, or to offer help breaking into the business. And this is before we get to the point that their world lets the likes of Harvey Weinstein thrive and flourish.

Most of the people who create our popular culture are constantly marinating in a culture of exploitation, greed, envy, objectification, abuse, hedonistic excess, and runaway lust of every kind. It’s amazing any of them come out of the process of becoming famous with their head on straight. And yet so many of our fellow countrymen are endlessly fascinated with the inmates of the asylum.
It's worth noting that the glitterati project a pseudo-moral fervor that can be hypnotizing, making an observer truly believe that they feel strongly about a particular issue. It's also worth noting that they are actors and that the persona they project for public consumption has little if anything to do with their real-life actions or character.

Monday, September 23, 2019


It has become standard operating procedure for the Democrats and their allies in the media and the deep state (think: the intelligence services) to overplay their hand in their fevered efforts to destroy Donald Trump. The latest installment in their never-ending attempts to unseat a duly-elected president is yet another manufactured scandal that has backfired and ensnared a leading Dem contender for the 2020 presidential nomination. This one has an unnamed intelligence agency "whistleblower" reporting that Trump promised an unnamed "favor" to a Ukranian official that was "troubling." The Dem's trained hamsters in the media initiated their usual selective feeding frenzy, without realizing that their Dem masters had a few dirty dealings with the Ukraine during the Obama administration (recall the Joe Biden was Vice president at the time) and in the run-up to the 2016 election.

After obligatory leaks, it turns out the Trump is alleged to have asked the Ukraine's president to investigate dirty dealings between Biden's son, Hunter, and a Ukrainian natural gas company, all precipitated by alleged influence peddling by Biden himself. The horror!! A president asking that alleged corruption by a senior government official (Biden) and his offspring) be investigated in the country in which it occurred.

Unfortunately for the Dems, the true scandal may have to do with Biden and his son and their machinations in the Ukraine. Like the gang that can't seem to shoot straight, the Dems have opened the door to all of that and although the trained hamsters are trying mightily to close it, they may not succeed.

Roger Kimball reports:
As has been reported previously, but then swept under the proverbial tapestry and into the oubliette, in 2014, while Joe Biden—still the vice president—was overseeing America’s Ukraine policy, chip-off-the-old-block Hunter became involved with a “controversial” (code for “corrupt”) Ukraine natural gas company. President Trump’s critics are skirling that he is trying to collect “dirt” on Joe Biden for his own political advantage. But, Schweitzer asks, what sort of “dirt” would that be?

Therein hangs a tale and it’s name is “Burisma,” the aforementioned natural gas company that, until several months ago, employed Hunter Biden. Schweitzer explains:
In April 2014, Hunter Biden agreed to join Burisma’s board of directors, ostensibly to advise on legal issues, The New Yorker reported. Biden had no known expertise on the natural gas industry, but Burisma was certainly in need of help.

Earlier that month, British officials had frozen the London bank accounts of Burisma’s owner, Mykola Zlochevsky, and soon after, Ukrainian officials opened their own corruption investigation into Burisma, the Kyiv Post in Ukraine reported.

Hunter Biden helped to recruit a legal team for Burisma, including former Obama administration Justice Department official John Buretta and several American consulting firms, the New York Times reported.

The younger Biden was well compensated for his efforts. Records obtained by the Government Accountability Institute show he was paid as much as $83,333 per month for his work at Burisma.
Nice work if you can get it, and good old Hunter Biden seems to be an ace at picking up that sort of work. I wonder how he does it?

It almost goes without saying that Hunter Biden denies any wrongdoing, says he had no role in the investigation, and that he and dear old dad never spoke about the company. But here (again, courtesy of Peter Schweitzer) are some thought-provoking, ah, coincidences:

On April 16, 2014, Devon Archer, Hunter Biden’s business partner, made a private visit to the White House for a meeting with Vice President Biden.
  • Five days later, on April 21, Joe Biden landed in Kiev for a series of high-level meetings with Ukrainian officials.
  • Soon thereafter, the United States and the International Monetary Fund pumped more than $1 billion into the Ukrainian economy.
  • The next day, there was a public announcement that Archer had been asked to join the board of Burisma.
  • Three weeks after that, on May 13, it was officially announced that Hunter Biden would join, too. Like Hunter Biden, Archer had no background or experience in the energy sector.
  • In March 2016, Ukrainian officials fired Viktor Shokin, the controversial prosecutor general whose office was overseeing the investigation into Burisma.
  • Six months later, the Burisma case was dropped entirely.
  • According to Joe Biden himself, the former vice president played a key role in the prosecutor’s dismissal.
How? Easy-peasy. In March 2016, Biden threatened to withhold $1 billion in U.S. loans if Shokin was not fired. This wasn’t just “reported” by a “source.” It came right from Biden himself. In a 2018 speech, he bragged, “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 bitch. He got fired.”
Will wonders never cease?
The trained hamsters want this "scandal" to be all about Trump. But the reality is that it's about influence peddling by Biden and corrupt practices that enriched his son. Yeah, I know, this is business as usual in Washington, but it seems to be that Trump was well within his rights to ask for an investigation in this episode, despite the hyperventilating by the Dems and their trained hamsters in the media.


David Catron puts an exclamation point on this episode when he writes:
he Democrats increasingly resemble those wannabe jihadis who blow themselves to rags by mishandling homemade explosives. Their animus for President Trump is such that they consistently underestimate the danger to themselves presented by “bombshell” revelations when managed with insufficient care. The already questionable credibility of Elizabeth Warren was recently damaged when, based on a now-debunked New York Times story, she precipitously demanded the impeachment of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh. A similarly impulsive Democratic response to the “explosive” claims made by an anonymous intelligence official about a telephone conversation between President Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky will inevitably explode in their faces.

Joe Biden is particularly vulnerable on this score. The substance of the call involved Trump’s request for an investigation into the business dealings of Biden’s son, Hunter, according to the “whistleblower.” The erstwhile VP is extraordinarily foolish to draw further attention to a son who has long been suspected of improperly leveraging his father’s prominent role in Ukrainian relations with the United States. Biden, however, is not exactly renowned for his critical thinking skills. Consequently, he responded defensively to a reporter’s question about his son’s Ukrainian activities during at a Saturday event in Iowa by calling for an investigation into the whistleblower’s accusation: “You should be looking at Trump.… Why is he on the phone with a foreign leader, trying to intimidate a foreign leader?”

This is rich, considering that Biden has bragged in public about using his own position in the Obama administration to get a Ukrainian prosecutor fired. In 2018, Biden spoke to a meeting of the Council on Foreign Relations and boasted that he had threatened to withhold $1 billion in U.S. loan guarantees from Ukraine if Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin wasn’t immediately canned: “I looked at them and said: ‘I’m leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you’re not getting the money.’” The ostensible reason for this heavy-handed pressure to get rid of Shokin was the man’s corruption. Presumably, it was just a coincidence that this particular prosecutor was planning an investigation into Burisma Holdings, a Ukrainian company for which Hunter Biden worked as a “consultant.”
Like the dozens of other "bombshell" revelations/smears that the Dems have adopted as their own, this latest "revelation" has been timed suspiciously. The IG report that may very well demonstrate that the soft coup initiated by executives at the FBI and CIA was real is due out in a few weeks. The trained hamsters need something else to focus on so they can ignore the the biggest political scandal in our nation's history, so ... this latest faux "bombshell."

Sunday, September 22, 2019


We're continually told by the four constituencies that the Trump administration is "chaotic," that his foreign policy is a mess, that we are not respected by our allies or our adversaries. That's abject nonsense, belied by clear foreign policy accomplishments, but Trump Derangement Syndrome rules the day. Iran is a case in point.

Trump wisely withdrew from Obama's Iran deal, an agreement that did nothing substantive to offset Iran's nuclear ambitions and funneled billions to a rogue regime that is the worst of a number of bad actors in the Middle East. With harsh sanctions put in place by Trump, Iran is being squeezed — hard — and as a consequence, they're acting out—seizing ships and recently, bombing Saudi oil fields. Their hope is that Trump, like other U.S. Presidents, would allow himself to be convinced to respond with force, beginning a conflict that we'll later have to extract ourselves from with concessions. To date, Trump has been too smart for that, refusing the admonitions of neocons who want a kinetic response and instead ratcheting up sanctions, grinding the Iranians into the ground. In an amusing turn of events, Trump's resistance to kinetic action has rendered the Democrats speechless—they're not sure how to respond.

Holman Jenkins, Jr. summarized all of this when he writes:
Our policy is working. Only when and if it serves our interest do we need to respond militarily (though it might be useful to strengthen the effect of sanctions by attacking under-the-table Iranian oil exports). It does not need to be done, as Arab and other critics suggest, to validate the 40-year U.S. policy of preventing any rival power from dominating the gulf and its oil resources.

We don’t have to prove that commitment at the drop of every hat. One of the many benefits of the U.S. domestic oil resurgence is that we don’t have to overreact to lesser disruptions of the oil flow from every regional spat or upset. The world economy remains adequately supplied. If prices go up a bit, the U.S. now benefits as a major producer, offsetting some of the damage on the consumer side.

Our position is stronger than ever. Only weak nations need to overreact.

Which is just as well. Even Donald Trump’s most devoted followers, for better or worse, have little desire to see him become a war president. They sense that recent wars haven’t served U.S. interests. They understand that the peculiar dynamics of the Trump presidency would not provide the unifying and rallying oomph that sometimes makes war an attractive domestic political proposition. Nor would being a war president particularly suit Mr. Trump’s episodic and wandering leadership style.

Which is also fine. There is no reason to oblige the Iranians and the Saudis, in their different ways, in how we respond to the attack. The Iranian goal is to lure the U.S. into a confrontation that Washington would eventually be wiling to pay to get out of, presumably by lifting sanctions and resuming the Obama nuclear payola. For the Saudis and their local allies, they wish to see the world’s superpower expend some of its military stockpiles to degrade Iran’s offensive capabilities in ways that would convenience them but wouldn’t do much for us ...

There are no guarantees, but the evidence so far is encouraging. Sanctions have cut Iran’s oil exports by 90% since April 2018. The regime is plodding toward a domestic crisis that, as of now, Iran’s leadership appears to hope it can escape by initiating provocations meant to suggest a wider war unless the U.S. backs down. Yet these war threats, if allowed to materialize, would only accelerate Iran’s domestic crisis. Though more provocations may be coming, these would only make it tougher for a future Democratic president to cancel the sanctions and reinstate the Obama nuclear deal. It’s hard to see a way out of Iran’s sanctions trap except by meeting U.S. demands to curb its obnoxious regional behavior.

Whether from shrewdness or instinct or an inability to reconcile his bellicose Twitter style with his urge for deals, Mr. Trump’s administration has defaulted to a useful strategy. It consists of letting sanctions work while leaving it to our local partners to cope with any spillovers that don’t fundamentally affect U.S. interests.
Any policy and any action that causes the Iranian regime to struggle is a win for the West. Donald Trump has created a nightmare for the Mullahs, economic stress that is hurting them badly, and an attitude that does not allow them to ensnare the United States in a regional conflict that we can't win. That may change if the Mullahs get really desperate, but if they do something that cannot be ignored without kinetic action, I can only hope we respond with overwhelmingly disproportionate force.

Friday, September 20, 2019


Roger Kimball make what amounts to rather a obvious comparison between the upheaval of the 1960s (for those of us old enough to remember those years) and the even more extreme actions now occurring as part of the Trump era. At the center of the upheaval within both eras is the Left, provoking change that is occasionally good, but far more often bad. Kimball offers useful insight when he writes:
... many of our most prominent cultural figures seem to believe that they occupy a unique perch at the very apogee of virtue and moral rectitude and are therefore entitled, O how entitled, to discard the achievements and admonitions of the past as so many false starts and dead ends on the way to true enlightenment, which is to say to whatever they happen to believe at the moment.

It is important to remember how general was the assault on our civilization in the Sixties. It wasn’t just protests against the Vietnam War, the sexual revolution, the new hedonism. What was aimed at was nothing less than what Nietzsche called the transvaluation of all values. Among other things, it represented a categorical repudiation of the American consensus, not just its engines of prosperity and individual liberty but also the basic tenets of our self-understanding, tenets that went back through English liberalism and the Scottish Enlightenment to the political meditations of the Greeks and the Romans.

We see something similar today in a different modality. In some ways, indeed, the assault on the fundamental values of our civilization is more thoroughgoing today than it was in the 1960s. This is partly because those conducting the assault are not launching their fusillades from outside the establishment but are themselves well integrated into and often highly-placed members of the establishment. They are, in a word, the Elite. It is also partly because the assault is no longer undertaken in the name of freedom and truth, however spurious, but, strange though it sounds, against both.

George Orwell was right when he observed that the first indispensable step towards freedom is the willingness to call things by their real names. We — which is to say, our masters in the media and cultural establishment — have lost that fortitude. The triumph of political correctness has encouraged an epidemic allergy to candor. The hope is that the embrace of euphemism will alter not only our language but also the reality that our language names.
It's a cliche to note that not only the gray-headed elites who grew up in the 60s, but many of their children, now are in leadership positions in business, media, entertainment, academia, and the deep state have to a great extent adopted the ideology of the Left. That means that those who follow them, younger millennials, are being mentored to act, think, and respond in ways that parrot that same ideology, and as a consequence, will set the stage for a massive change in governance.

That's a probable future reality, but here's the problem. This is the era of the euphemism—changing the name of something is believed to change the reality of that thing. It's nonsense, of course, it's authoritarian by design, and its intent is to warp reality to fit a particular worldview.

But why? The reason, I think, is that the worldview promoted so vigorously by modern elites will fail in its effort to achieve its utopian promise. Deep down, I suspect that at least some of the elites know this, but their thirst for power is so strong that they suppress it. As a consequence, when faced with the failure of their ideas and the unrest that will likely result, the elites must be able to control the language, the medium, the history, and the actions of those among them who might begin to ask questions. Those questions will be deemed "racist," or "misogynist," or "classist" or any of a growing number of epithets that describe thought crimes.

Orwell was right—freedom is the ability to call things by their real names, to use appropriate adjectives to describe people who have done despicable things, to jettison magical thinking and rely on reality (even if that reality collides with political correctness). That won't happen under the governance of the modern elites. As massive change in governance occurs, freedom will be lost.

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Politics, Predictions, and Policy

Do you know Greta Thunberg? She's a Swedish teenager who travels the world warning about the threat of climate change. She demands that those in power accept the finding of scientists and public policy "experts" who have formed a "consensus" that dire things will happen in 12-, 30-, 50-, and 100-years because our climate is changing as a direct result of human-generated pollutants dominated by CO2. Given her impressionable age, her fervor is understandable. Her argument is that her generation and those that follow are threatened by the actions of this generation and the ones that preceded it. She demands action and has become a darling of the media. She is not a scientist or an expert in climatology.

Michael Crichton [1942-2008] was a novelist, screenwriter, and medical doctor who wrote well over a dozen bestselling novels that explored science and technology and its impact on the future. His books were rich in scientific/technological detail and his stories (think: The Andromeda Strain, Jurassic Park, State of Fear) are becoming closer and closer to reality as the 21st century proceeds. I recently ran across a speech given by Crichton in January, 2003 in which he discussed science, consensus, and how both can be manipulated to impact public policy in ways that are often counter-productive.

In his speech, Crichton discussed a variety of instances in which unproven scientific hypotheses and limited, sometimes manipulated data were used to make frightening predictions that were themselves used to influence public policy. During the 1970s, the threat of nuclear war between the United States and the USSR was real. No one—and I do mean NO ONE—was in favor of nuclear war. As if a nuclear exchange wasn't bad enough, an even more terrifying specter was raised by some scientists. Crichton writes:
In 1975, the National Academy of Sciences reported on "Long-Term Worldwide Effects of Multiple Nuclear Weapons Detonations" but the report estimated the effect of dust from nuclear blasts to be relatively minor. In 1979, the Office of Technology Assessment issued a report on "The Effects of Nuclear War" and stated that nuclear war could perhaps produce irreversible adverse consequences on the environment. However, because the scientific processes involved were poorly understood, the report stated it was not possible to estimate the probable magnitude of such damage.

Three years later, in 1982, the Swedish Academy of Sciences commissioned a report entitled "The Atmosphere after a Nuclear War: Twilight at Noon," which attempted to quantify the effect of smoke from burning forests and cities. The authors speculated that there would be so much smoke that a large cloud over the northern hemisphere would reduce incoming sunlight below the level required for photosynthesis, and that this would last for weeks or even longer.

The following year, five scientists including Richard Turco and Carl Sagan published a paper in Science called "Nuclear Winter: Global Consequences of Multiple Nuclear Explosions." This was the so-called TTAPS report, which attempted to quantify more rigorously the atmospheric effects, with the added credibility to be gained from an actual computer model of climate ...

[The nuclear winter model was structured so that] none of the variables can be determined. None at all. The TTAPS study addressed this problem in part by mapping out different wartime scenarios and assigning numbers to some of the variables, but even so, the remaining variables were-and are-simply unknowable. Nobody knows how much smoke will be generated when cities burn, creating particles of what kind, and for how long. No one knows the effect of local weather conditions on the amount of particles that will be injected into the troposphere. No one knows how long the particles will remain in the troposphere. And so on.

And remember, this is only four years after the OTA study concluded that the underlying scientific processes were so poorly known that no estimates could be reliably made. Nevertheless, the TTAPS study not only made those estimates, but concluded they were catastrophic.

According to Sagan and his coworkers, even a limited 5,000 megaton nuclear exchange would cause a global temperature drop of more than 35 degrees Centigrade, and this change would last for three months. The greatest volcanic eruptions that we know of changed world temperatures somewhere between .5 and 2 degrees Centigrade. Ice ages changed global temperatures by 10 degrees. Here we have an estimated change three times greater than any ice age. One might expect it to be the subject of some dispute. But Sagan and his coworkers were prepared, for nuclear winter was from the outset the subject of a well-orchestrated media campaign. The first announcement of nuclear winter appeared in an article by Sagan in the Sunday supplement, Parade. The very next day, a highly-publicized, high-profile conference on the long-term consequences of nuclear war was held in Washington, chaired by Carl Sagan and Paul Ehrlich, the most famous and media-savvy scientists of their generation. Sagan appeared on the Johnny Carson show 40 times. Ehrlich was on 25 times. Following the conference, there were press conferences, meetings with congressmen, and so on. The formal papers in Science came months later.

This is not the way science is done, it is the way products are sold.
Crichton went on to cite multiple instances in which the consensus of prominent scientists was proven to be dead wrong. Here are a few excerpts:
I want to pause here and talk about this notion of consensus, and the rise of what has been called consensus science. I regard consensus science as an extremely pernicious development that ought to be stopped cold in its tracks. Historically, the claim of consensus has been the first refuge of scoundrels; it is a way to avoid debate by claiming that the matter is already settled. Whenever you hear the consensus of scientists agrees on something or other, reach for your wallet, because you're being had.

Let's be clear: the work of science has nothing whatever to do with consensus. Consensus is the business of politics. Science, on the contrary, requires only one investigator who happens to be right, which means that he or she has results that are verifiable by reference to the real world. In science consensus is irrelevant. What is relevant is reproducible results. The greatest scientists in history are great precisely because they broke with the consensus.

There is no such thing as consensus science. If it's consensus, it isn't science. If it's science, it isn't consensus. Period.

In addition, let me remind you that the track record of the consensus is nothing to be proud of. Let's review a few cases.

In past centuries, the greatest killer of women was fever following childbirth . One woman in six died of this fever. In 1795, Alexander Gordon of Aberdeen suggested that the fevers were infectious processes, and he was able to cure them. The consensus said no. In 1843, Oliver Wendell Holmes claimed puerperal fever was contagious, and presented compelling evidence. The consensus said no. In 1849, Semmelweiss demonstrated that sanitary techniques virtually eliminated puerperal fever in hospitals under his management. The consensus said he was a Jew, ignored him, and dismissed him from his post. There was in fact no agreement on puerperal fever until the start of the twentieth century. Thus the consensus took one hundred and twenty five years to arrive at the right conclusion despite the efforts of the prominent "skeptics" around the world, skeptics who were demeaned and ignored. And despite the constant ongoing deaths of women.

There is no shortage of other examples. In the 1920s in America, tens of thousands of people, mostly poor, were dying of a disease called pellagra. The consensus of scientists said it was infectious, and what was necessary was to find the "pellagra germ." The US government asked a brilliant young investigator, Dr. Joseph Goldberger, to find the cause. Goldberger concluded that diet was the crucial factor. The consensus remained wedded to the germ theory. Goldberger demonstrated that he could induce the disease through diet. He demonstrated that the disease was not infectious by injecting the blood of a pellagra patient into himself, and his assistant. They and other volunteers swabbed their noses with swabs from pellagra patients, and swallowed capsules containing scabs from pellagra rashes in what were called "Goldberger's filth parties." Nobody contracted pellagra. The consensus continued to disagree with him.

There was, in addition, a social factor-southern States disliked the idea of poor diet as the cause, because it meant that social reform was required. They continued to deny it until the 1920s. Result-despite a twentieth century epidemic, the consensus took years to see the light.

Probably every schoolchild notices that South America and Africa seem to fit together rather snugly, and Alfred Wegener proposed, in 1912, that the continents had in fact drifted apart. The consensus sneered at continental drift for fifty years. The theory was most vigorously denied by the great names of geology until 1961, when it began to seem as if the sea floors were spreading. The result: it took the consensus fifty years to acknowledge what any schoolchild sees.

And shall we go on? The examples can be multiplied endlessly. Jenner and smallpox, Pasteur and germ theory. Saccharine, margarine, repressed memory, fiber and colon cancer, hormone replacement therapy, the list of consensus errors goes on and on.

Finally, I would remind you to notice where the claim of consensus is invoked. Consensus is invoked only in situations where the science is not solid enough. Nobody says the consensus of scientists agrees that E=mc2. Nobody says the consensus is that the sun is 93 million miles away. It would never occur to anyone to speak that way.
The parallels with modern day claims of catastrophe supported by scientific "consensus" and backed by models for which "the underlying scientific processes [are] so poorly known that no estimates could be reliably made" is striking. Crichton commented on the broader issue:
As the twentieth century drew to a close, the connection between hard scientific fact and public policy became increasingly elastic. In part this was possible because of the complacency of the scientific profession; in part because of the lack of good science education among the public; in part, because of the rise of specialized advocacy groups which have been enormously effective in getting publicity and shaping policy; and in great part because of the decline of the media as an independent assessor of fact. The deterioration of the American media is dire loss for our country. When distinguished institutions like the New York Times can no longer differentiate between factual content and editorial opinion, but rather mix both freely on their front page, then who will hold anyone to a higher standard?

And so, in this elastic anything-goes world where science-or non-science-is the hand maiden of questionable public policy, we arrive at last at global warming. It is not my purpose here to rehash the details of this most magnificent of the demons haunting the world. I would just remind you of the now familiar pattern by which these things are established. Evidentiary uncertainties are glossed over in the unseemly rush for an overarching policy, and for grants to support the policy by delivering findings that are desired by the patron. Next, the isolation of those scientists who won't get with the program, and the characterization of those scientists as outsiders and "skeptics" [or "deniers"] in quotation marks-suspect individuals with suspect motives, industry flunkies, reactionaries, or simply anti-environmental nutcases. In short order, debate ends, even though prominent scientists are uncomfortable about how things are being done. When did "skeptic" become a dirty word in science? When did a skeptic require quotation marks around it?
Crichton wrote this over 16 years ago. Had he lived, I suspect he would be unsurprised by the celebrity achieved by Greta Thunberg.

Being a skeptic doesn't say that you're dismissing any scientific claim out of hand, but it does say that every scientist must be able to prove that their hypotheses and models conform to the real world today and provide compelling evidence that those same hypotheses will conform to the world in the future. And until hard, irrefutable proof is forthcoming, public policy and the politicians who craft it should proceed cautiously when relying on "consensus."

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Broken Glass

In the aftermath of the latest failed attempt (by the New York Times) to perpetrate a vicious smear of SCOTUS Justice Brett Kavanaugh, people have been reminded of past attempts perpetrated by the Democrats and their trained hamsters in the media. And more than a few of those people are fed up — pissed off big time. John Kass, an actual journalist (as opposed to the partisan hacks who work for the NYT) for the Chicago Tribune is one of those people. He writes about the forces that motivated the NYT to lie, omit critical facts, and otherwise attempt to ruin Kavanaugh's reputation forever—all because he doesn't accept their Leftist world view:
The left lost control of the Supreme Court through the 2016 election of President Donald Trump, who has nominated two conservative justices and may nominate another if he’s reelected in 2020. Since 2016, the left has waged cultural war, delegitimizing all institutions that may stand in their way.

Theirs is a dangerous game with far-reaching implications, but the left reveals itself, clearly, as determined to destroy Kavanaugh’s credibility, and that of the Supreme Court itself, to protect past gains. Unhindered, in fact aided and cheered on by many in the media, the left proceeds on its scorched-earth strategy.

What is dangerous is that what is burned in their culture war are American institutions, and the scorched earth is the American republic ...

The left’s end game is the delegitimization of the Supreme Court, if justices don’t give them the political outcomes they can’t achieve through legislation.

One way to accomplish this is to sear into the American mind the idea that Kavanaugh is personally illegitimate, and therefore, his reasoning and decisions are illegitimate. Though the allegations against him remain uncorroborated, and most are incredible and fall apart in embarrassing fashion, like the one most recently in the Times, the assault continues.

And not only against Kavanaugh, but also against other justices and future nominees. They are warned that destruction and humiliation await.

So, the left would hang upon his neck an asterisk like some medal of shame, a reminder to future history that everything he accomplishes is illegitimate.
Democrat politicians condone this behavior, and their leftist supporters justify it because in their fever swamp of Trump Derangement Syndrome, an elected president (and his nominees, once confirmed) must be removed 'by any means necessary.'

Those of us who have observed this despicable behavior smile and nod when reading this tweet by @johnekdahl (who did not vote for Trump in 2016 and doesn't particularly like his style):

He won't be alone. #Walkaway.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019


If you were to listen to the Democrat candidates for President, you're surely convinced that minorities are suffering, women are chattel, and the middle class is in the dumps because we have a "racist," "misogynist," "fascist" president who is a "FAILURE." One thing is certain, based on actual economic data, Trump has "failed" to hurt the very people the Dem's tell us he loathes.

Investor's Business Daily provide a radically different set of facts, not opinions:
To its credit, [The Washington Post] recently analyzed Labor Department data. What it found was shocking: More than 86% of the jobs added since the end of 2016 went to minorities. Out of 5.2 million new jobs, minorities accounted for 4.5 million.

If Trump’s a racist, he’s an abject failure.

What about that other favorite epithet of the left, “misogynist”? If Trump hates women so much, why do his policies seem to provide so many opportunities for them?

As The Daily Signal’s Mary Margaret Olohan notes: “Among full-time, year-round workers, the number of women increased by 1.6 million and the number of men increased by about 700,000 between 2017 and 2018.”

The median real income for female-headed households with no spouse rose 5.8% from 2017 to 2018. For married couples, there was no change. The poverty rate for female-led households shrank from 26.2% in 2017 to 24.9% in 2018.

OK, but surely, billionaire Trump hates the poor and his policies have been disastrous for them, right?

In fact, as the Census data show, the number of people living in poverty fell by 1.4 million people in 2018 alone, with the poverty rate dropping from 12.3% to 11.8%, its lowest since before the 2007 financial crisis. That decline was led by female-headed households, minority ones in particular, the most vulnerable of all.

Meanwhile, Department of Agriculture data show that 6.3 million Americans have fallen out of the food stamp program since Trump took office. The main reason: parents in poor families are getting jobs and are no longer eligible.
Say what you will about Trump the man, Trump the president deserves credit for an economy that is helping everyone.

Monday, September 16, 2019


With all of the problems facing our world and our country—the opioid crisis, gun violence and the way in which we try to control it, on-going racial tensions, bankruptcy facing major U.S. cities, a climate crisis that we are told will lead to the destruction of the planet, a roiled Middle East in which the hegemon Iran is conducting a shadow war via proxies against its neighbors, North Korea as a growing nuclear power, the India-Pakistan conflict, the Russians' mischief as they try to regain a power position that has long since faded, the economic upheaval in the EU, and on and on—you'd think the Democrats and their progressive allies would have plenty to worry about and policy positions to propose.

Instead, they appear to want to reprise one of the most despicable episodes in American political history and take yet another swipe at Supreme Court Justice, Brett Kavanaugh. The New York Post reports:
New York Times reporters Robin Pogrebin and Kate Kelly spent months reaching out to Yale alumni for more dirt on Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s undergraduate years more than three decades ago, and came up empty.

That’s the actual bottom line of their Times article that dropped online Saturday, though they suggest otherwise — since they clearly want to not just boost sales of the book, but also do whatever they can to further smear the justice.

How dishonest was the piece? Well, its biggest “shocker” is noting the existence of yet another alleged Kavanaugh incident — but the article leaves out the fact that the supposed victim doesn’t remember a thing.

Mollie Hemingway, one of the authors of Justice on Trial, a book that honestly looks at the Kavanague hearings, reinforces the Post's position:
“The Education of Brett Kavanaugh: An Investigation” is neither a look at the education of Brett Kavanaugh nor an investigation. They admit they found no evidence to support the claims made by Christine Blasey Ford or Debbie Ramirez, although they say their “gut reaction” to the allegations is that they are true. They generously concede that their “gut” tells them that Michael Avennati client Julie Swetnick’s claims are not true, citing the lack of corroboration.

The “lack of corroboration” standard was unevenly held to by the authors. Blasey Ford’s four witnesses all denied knowledge of the party at which her alleged assault took place. Ramirez went from telling Ronan Farrow “I don’t have any stories about Brett Kavanaugh and sexual misconduct,” to telling friends of an incident for which she “couldn’t be sure” Kavanaugh was involved, to now being the centerpiece of the Pogebrin and Kelly book. Ramirez also had no eyewitness support for her story that allegedly took place at a well-attended party, even after friendly media outlets contacted some 75 classmates trying to find corroboration. Both women had the support of many friends and activists, however.
This lack of journalistic integrity would be surprising if it wasn't so common at the NYT. In fact, it appears that the NYT will publish any lie as long as it serves to bolster the progressive cause du jour.

At the time of his confirmation hearing, I commented at length about the Democrats depraved treatment of Kavanagh—here, here, here, here, and here. And now, some Democratic candidates for president* have decided to double down on their truly disgusting behavior and suggest that Kavanaugh be impeached.

And this crew tells us we should allow them to lead? Incredible.


* Left leaning New York magazine proudly reports:
At least six Democratic presidential candidates have released statements calling for the impeachment or removal of Supreme Court justice Brett Kavanaugh after new details supporting and adding to the sexual misconduct allegations against him were revealed over the weekend.
They go on to suggest that Kavanaugh's impeachment will become a 2020 election issue, demonstrating just how out-of-touch the majority of leftists actually are. It's heartening to note that a substantial number of Democrats and virtually all Independents were appalled by Kavanagh's treatment by the Democrats in the Senate. If the Dems think that dredging up this unseemly debacle yet again (with more wholly unsubstantiated allegations) will help them, they truly are deranged.


Willian A. Jacobson comments on the manner in which Democrats can't accept reality or for that matter, political defeat:
It’s never over.

It wasn’t and isn’t over for Clarence Thomas, who continues to be maligned some 27 years later. The permanent investigation and torment of Brett Kavanaugh follows a well-worn Democrat path.

That’s why Kavanaugh has been and continues to be such a clarifying event.

Trump supporters are going to support Trump. The continued attacks on Kavanaugh serve as a motivator, as Rita Panahi expressed:
Nothing has galvanised conservatives more than watching an innocent man being smeared by false accusations. Astonishing that the Left still hasn’t worked out that Kavanaugh in the news cycle is hugely beneficial to Trump.
There are many others who may not be Trump supporters, but are willing to support Trump. John Ekdahl, who isn’t a Trump supporter and voted for Gary Johnson in 2016, expressed a sentiment I suspect is widely shared:
The Kavanaugh railroad is the most politically clarifying event in my life, and it is why, as the New York Times seems intent on reminding us, I will crawl over broken glass to vote for a guy I don’t particularly like next year.
This latest smear attempt against Kavanaugh tells us a lot more about the Dems that it does about Justice Kavanaugh. It's vicious, dishonest, and reprehensible, but that's the game plan. I truly do hope it becomes a "clarifying event" for those who might be on the fence for next year's election.

UPDATE-2 (9-17-2019):

Hopefully the last word on the ugliness associated with the Democrat's to use lies, omissions, and outright viciousness in an attempt to "put an asterisk" next to Brett Kavanaugh's name:

William Mcgurn provides us with insight into the reasons and strategy behind the Dem's repugnant behavior in the Kavanaugh situation:
This is what Democrats do when they believe there could be a fifth vote to overturn Roe, the 1973 decision that upended the laws of all 50 states to legalize abortion. It’s why Sen. Ted Kennedy in 1987 slandered Judge Robert Bork as a man working for an America where “women would be forced into back-alley abortions” and “blacks would sit at segregated lunch counters.” It’s why Judge Clarence Thomas was savaged in 1991, when he faced his own last-minute inquisition over alleged sexual harassment. And it’s why the assassination of Justice Kavanaugh’s character continues.
Personally, I'm pro choice. But that doesn't mean I would countenance vicious attempts to destroy a good person's life and reputation because of the CHANCE (!!) that he MIGHT (!!) vote in a way that would jeopardize Roe v. Wade. If there are solid reasons why current precedent should be maintianed (and I believe there are), the Dems should work hard to convince a majority of the country that they are valid. Rather than the on-going ugly smear that they have initiated, might it not be better to push for solid law that would protect the right to choose, replacing Roe v. Wade with something that is unassailable. But that requires work and compromise—ad hominem attacks against a sitting justice on SCOTUS are so much easier.

Thursday, September 12, 2019

A few Questions—II

Before the first Democratic debate in June, I proposed a set of questions that I thought might be useful to ask. Now that 10 candidates remain, these questions (most have not been asked) remain relevant, so I repeat them here with a few modifications. The debates, hosted by two titular democratic operatives (rather than objective newspeople) will offer up softball questions so that Bernie and Liz, Joe and Beto, Kamala and Pete look good. Here are a few questions that should be asked:

[One plus sign (+) represents a core question and two plus signs (++) represent a follow-up]:

The Economy

+ By every reasonable measure, the U.S. economy under the Trump administration is strong. Do you agree?
++ If not, please explain how 3.6 percent unemployment and GDP growth of 3.2 percent are bad things? Then explain how your policies would improve the economy.
+ Has the Trump economy benefited African Americans and Latinos?
++ If not, how do you explain the fact that both groups are experiencing the lowest unemployment and the highest wage growth in history?
+ Has the Trump economy improved the wages of middle class workers?
++ If not, what specific policies would you implement to improve on the 4.4 percent wage growth of the past four years?
+ Have women been sidelined in the Trump economy?
++ If yes, how do you explain that women have experienced the lowest unemployment rate in history over the past two years?
+ Deficits and debt have grown during this administration and your party has indicated that it is against both. Do you think that reduced federal spending is an effective way to reduce the deficit and the debt?
++ If yes, what specific federal spending would you reduce?
++ If no, would you raise taxes to reduce the deficit and the debt? How would you implement the tax increase? With respect, please provide us with actual numbers, not broad platitudes.


+ Please describe for the American people your definition of the term, "Democratic Socialist?"
++ Do you consider yourself a Democratic Socialist and why?
++ Is capitalism a good system that benefits the middle class?
+ Do you support the notion of Universal Basic Income?"
++ If yes, how can you explain a recent study by Public Services International, a decidedly left-wing, pro-Union organization, that came to the conclusion that UBI is unworkable and doesn't improve the prospects of those who receive it?
+ Did Venezuela's rapid adoption of socialist policies under Hugo Chavez and then Nicholas Maduro have anything to do the economic collapse of the country and the resultant humanitarian disaster? Please explain your answer.
++ Should Nicholas Maduro remain in power, and if not, why not?
++ Why do you think it is that a current presidential candidate, (i.e., Bernie Sanders) once praised Hugo Chavez?
+ Democratic socialists like Bernie Sanders or Liz Warren ignore the failure and repression in socialist countries like Cuba or North Korea, Venezuela or Nicaragua, but instead use Scandinavian countries as examples of"successful socialism." Yet the leaders of those countries argue that they are NOT socialist but rather free market economies with some generous social programs. Do you honestly believe that generous social programs that work in, say, Denmark, a country that has a relatively homogeneous population that is smaller than that of many major US cities can be scaled up to a country of 320 million people?
++ If yes, please explain how you would accomplish such scaling.
+ Do you agree that socialism, even when instituted with the best intentions, has a tendency to go bad, sometimes, very very bad.
++ If you disagree, how would you characterize the millions who died by oppression and starvation under Joseph Stalin or Mao Zedong, or the utter destruction of a country and economy under Cuba's Fidel Castro or Venezuela's Nicholas Maduro?
++ Why is it, do you think, that large centralized government control sometimes leads to very bad things (e.g., Mao's Great Leap Forward policy which led to the deaths of up to 45 million people)? How can you assure the American people that some Democrats' brand of socialism won't ultimately lead to very bad things.

Medicare for All

+ Are you in favor of eliminating private health insurance in conjunction with universal health care, a.k.a. Medicare for all?
++ If yes, how can you assure the American people that the same federal government that has been shown to be less than efficient in its programs and services (e.g., the VA) will somehow provide exemplary medical care?
++ If yes, how can you assure the American people that the "cost controls" that are inherent in such a system won't result in doctor shortages that are now occurring in the United Kingdom?
++ Since all 320 million citizens will now be on Medicare, how will your administration ensure that care will not be rationed or that waits will not be overly long?
++ What level of additional taxation will be required to pay for your Medicare for all program? Howe much will the program cost over ten years?
+ Will participants in "medicare for All" be able to keep their own doctor?
++ Why is it, do you think, that President Obama made that promise but didn't keep it?
+ Are you in favor of price controls for big pharma?
++ If yes, do you think that big pharma will reduce the amount of R&D it currently performed to develop new drugs? If you don't think that will happen, what incentive will you provide to have them continue at their current rate for R&D when their revenues go down?


+ It is the position of many Democrats that the "rich" don't pay their far share of taxes. Given that the top 10 percent of all taxpayers currently pay about 70 percent of all federal income taxes, what percentage should they pay? 80 percent, 90 percent, 100 percent? Please be specific.
++ Some in your party have suggested that people making over $50 million a year pay a 70 percent "mega-millionaires" tax. Do you agree?
++ If yes, will the money raised appreciably reduce our deficit?
++ Others in your party have suggested that becoming a billionaire is somehow immoral. Do you agree?

Income Inequality

+ Many members of your party have made much of income disparity in the United States. Some have suggested that a corporate CEO should earn no more than 15 or 20 times the pay of the average worker in their company. Do you agree?
++ Would you suggest the same 15 or 20 times pay multiple for entertainers who currently make tens of millions of dollars for movies or music tours or for professional athletes who are paid very large salaries?
+ Do you think it's fair and appropriate that ex-presidents or other politicians are paid very large speaking fees after leaving office?
++ Specifically, is it fair that Barack Obama was recently paid a reported $700,000 for a one hour speech?
+ Who specifically would you hold responsible for income inequality?
+ Can you identify a period in world history where there was no income inequality?
+ Why is it that government workers have average salaries that are considerably higher than equivalent average salaries in the private sector?
++ Is that an "inequality?
++ Should it be remedied by decreasing government worker pay rates?
+ In the interest of reducing income inequality, would you endorse the notion that members of congress be paid a salary that is in line with the average wage in their congressional district or state?
++ If it's worth considering, would you be willing to endorse the idea of a rather substantial pay cut for members of congress to make that happen?

The Living Wage

+ Are you in favor of a mandatory "living wage" of $15.00 per hour, even for entry level jobs?
++ Can you explain how that number was derived and why it isn't higher, say $20 or $30 per hour?
++ How do you explain the fact that in locales that have implemented the living wage, entry level jobs have decreased in unprecedented numbers?
++ Given that, how has the living wage helped those workers who no longer have a job?
+ Are you in favor of limiting the amount of automation a company can install in the workplace?
+ Are you in favor of a special tax on automation devices (e.g., robots)?


+ Many in your party argue that they are NOT for open borders but want high tech solutions to illegal border crossing rather than physical barriers. Can you describe the "high tech" solutions and provide evidence that they will, in fact, reduce illegal crossings?
+ Members of your party have suggested that border walls are ineffective or are "against American values?" Do you agree, and if so, will you pledge to take down already-constructed walls on our southern border since they are ineffective and against our core values?
+ Many in your party suggest that asylum be granted liberally. Do you agree? And if so, under your administration, how many asylum seekers would be admitted each year? Please provide an order of magnitude—10,000, 100,000, 1 million, 10 million?
+ Is there ever a reason to deport an undocumented immigrant? If the answer is no, why? If the answer is yes, what crimes would qualify as deportable offenses?
+ Do you agree that ICE should be abolished?
+ Would you be in favor of deporting a known member of the murderous gang, MS-13, if he or she was proven to be an illegal immigrant?
+ Do you believe that the 2020 census should ask each respondent whether or not they are a U.S. citizen?
++ If not, why not?
++ And if you argue that the question should not be asked, please explain why the suppression of important measures of our population is somehow a good thing?

Law Enforcement

+ Everyone agrees that there are racial incidents that do occur in law enforcement, but do you believe that there is systemic racism throughout the law enforcement community?
+ Do you believe that the FBI and U.S. intelligent agencies should act against a duly-elected President of the United States because they do not like his political positions or his personality?
++ If the Republicans developed a dossier on you, would you be comfortable allowing the FBI to use it as the basis for an investigation of your campaign? And if you were elected, your presidency?
++ If a special prosecutor were named to investigate your administration would you be comfortable with a prosecutor whose entire team was composed on GOP lawyers?
++ Do you believe that James Comey, John Brennan, and James Clapper are honest and non-partisan members of the law enforcement and intelligence communities?
+ Do you believe that senior members of law enforcement, intelligence, and DoJ plotted against Donald Trump both before and after he was elected president?
++ If not, how do you explain the evidence recently brought to light by ongoing IG investigations within the FBI and by the DoJ?
++ If you suggest that thise investigation are bias, are similar investigation by Democratic House committees also biased?
++ If not, please explain why that is.
+Do you believe the special counsel's finding that Donald Trump did not collude with Russian in any way? If not, do you know of any evidence to contradict those findings, and if you do, can you provide a brief summary of that evidence?

Supreme Court

+ During the hearings for Judge Kavanaugh, your party had no problem probing his high school record. Many members of your party also noted that it is incumbent upon everyone to "believe the woman," regardless of any lack of supporting evidence. Will you go on record right now supporting the notion that any Supreme Court nominee you name should be investigated all the way back to his or her high school yearbook and that any untoward behavior during high school would be disqualifying for that nominee regardless of their lifelong achievement and record?
++ I wonder if you'd comment on the sexual abuse allegations leveled against VA Lt. Governor, Justin Fairfax, with specific emphasis on why we should not "believe the woman" and demand that he resign immediately?
++ Why do you think that both individual remain in office in VA?


+ Your party has not explicitly condemned or censured Rep. Ilhan Omar for her anti-Semitic statements? Are you willing do so now, and if not, how would you explain your reticence to Jewish supporters of the Democratic party?
++ If you argue that Omar's statements are NOT anti-Semitic, do you believe that support of organizations like CAIR—a rabidly anti-Israel group—is appropriate for a member of congress?
++ Would you endorse CAIR's positions on Israel?
+ The New York Times published a decided anti-Semitic cartoon earlier this year. Would you reject an endorsement from the NYT because of that.
++ If not, would you condemn any GOP opponent who might accept the endorsement of a media source that, say, published a racist cartoon.
+ Do you support the BDS movement, a movement supported by some of the Left that tries to boycott, divest, and sanction the State of Israel?
++ If not, would you be willing to reject those on the left that do endorse BDS?
+ Do you think that someone can be anti-Israel, but at the same time, not anti-Semitic?
++ Regardless of your answer, is it also possible to be anti-Israel and anti-Semitic, like, say, the palestinian group Hamas or the leadership in Iran?


+ Some in your party have suggested that reparations be paid to African Americans for slavery. Do you agree, and if so, how would you implement this policy?
+ Are racial preferences in education and business a good thing?
++ If yes, can you cite specific research or evidence to support your position?
+ Do you subscribe to the belief that our country is systemically racist?
+ Do you subscribe to the belief that "white privilege" is the dominant reason for economic disparity between the races?

The New Green Deal and Climate Change

+ Many in your party have taken the position that anthropogenic climate change is the "existential threat" of the 21st century. Some have suggested in the New Green Deal that we have 12 years to act or catastrophe will occur. Others have suggested that we should mount a WWII level effort to correct the problem. We understand that the New Green Deal is "aspirational," but what aspects of it would you implement in your first term in office?
++ Given the threat of climate change, would you be willing to impose sanctions on or take military action against, say, India or China because they are the world's primary polluters?
++ Since climate change is an existential threat, and private jet aircraft are notorious polluters, would you be willing to forego all private jet travel for the remainder of this campaign?
++ What increase in electricity rates across the nation would your administration be willing to accept to save the planet from climate change. Please be specific and provide a percentage.

The Vote

+ Are you in favor of voter ID laws to eliminate even the appearance of voter fraud?
++ If you oppose such laws because of claimed "voter suppression," please explain why the requirement for an ID doesn't suppress applications for other government programs (e.g., SNAP EBT cards), air travel, using a credit card, cashing a paycheck, or getting a driver's license?
++ Please explain how the argument that members of one group are incapable of getting a government ID isn't condescending and racist?
+ Are you in favor of the constitutionally mandated electoral college?
++ If you are in favor of abolishing the electoral college, please explain what the phrase, "tyranny of the majority," means to you?
++ If you are in favor of abolishing the electoral college, are you also in favor of limiting states rights and allowing a central government to control most aspects of our society?
+ Do you believe, as many of your party indicated in 2016, that failure to accept the results of a properly conducted election is anti-democratic and wrong?
++ If so, can you explain how the continuing efforts of democrats to remove a duly elected president from office isn't simply a failure to accept the results of an election?

International Relations

+ Can you identify the actions that caused Libya to become a failed state?
+ Can you identify the actions that caused Syria to become a failed state?
+ Why is it, do you think, that so many Muslim majority countries in the Middle East are failed states or economically crippled?
+ Do you view Israel as an "oppressor?"
++ If not, what would you say to members of your own party who think that it is?
++ Do you believe that some elements of the Left are anti-Israel?
++ Do you support the BDS movement?
+ Do you believe that trade negotiations with China are a good thing?
++ If that's the case, what would you do if negotiation broke down?
+ Many in your party defended Barack Obama's Iran Deal and condemned Donald Trump when he nullified the deal. Where do you stand on Iran and what would you do if they continue their development of nuclear materials and/or ICBMs?
+ Many in your party have criticized Donald Trump for his interactions with North Korea and Iran. Do you agree with that criticism?
++ If you do, what would you have done differently if you were president in the same circumstances?

Censorship and Free Speech

+ Do you agree with Antifa activists who shout down conservative speakers in the name of anti-facist action?
+ Do you agree that a university has the right to charge conservative student groups a "security fee" to protect the speakers they invite on campus from progressive activists who might try to disrupt the speaker?
++ Why is it, do you think, that progressive groups are not charged the same fee?
+ Do you agree that political views different than yours have a right to be heard?
+ Should private corporations in the form of major social media players, who are now analogous to public communication utilities, be able to censor speech they do not like?
++ If yes, how do you define hate speech or incitement?
++ Why is it, do you think, that the majority of those banned from Twitter or Facebook come from the conservative side of the political spectrum?
++ If so, who, if anyone, should make a decision on whether those views will be heard?

Election Interference

+ Many members of your party have suggested that the Russians helped Donald Trump win the 2016 election. Earlier they claimed that Trump colluded with them in that regard. Yet, Robert Mueller found absolutely no evidence of collusion. Do you accept that finding?
++ If you do not accept Mueller's findings, what evidence can you offer to refute Mueller's conclusions?
++ If you do accept Mueller's findings, do you think that members of your party who claimed the evidence was compelling—Rep. Adam Schiff comes to mind—should apologize for making spurious, unsupported claims of collusion?
+ Many members of your party have suggested that an unsolicited offer of "dirt" on an opponent from a foreign adversary MUST be reported to the FBI. Do you agree?
++ If you do agree, how would you characterize a covert paid solicitation of "dirt" on an opponent from a foreign adversary, for example, the Clinton campaign's paid solicitation of a salacious dossier on Donald Trump built on Russian-supplied disinformation. Is that the same or worse?
++ If you agree that it's the same (or worse), do you endorse a full-blown federal investigation into Clinton's actions in 2016?
++ If you think it's not as bad, explain your reasoning.


+ Do you agree that Donald Trump should be impeached?
++ If yes, please cite specific—not abstract—evidence that would rise to the level of impeachable offenses.
+ At the time, were you in favor of Bill Clinton's impeachment?
++ If no, please explain why and how his actions did not rise to an impeachable offense, yet Donald trump's action have.