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Monday, May 09, 2016

Cruising the Web

Andrew Klavan explains how conservatives are also to blame for Trump. There are too many people out there who have become too unforgiving of any deviation from full-blown opposition to Obama and the Democratic agenda as if any sort of compromise was a sin.
American politics is not a battle between demons and angels for the throne of God. It's a negotiation among immensely flawed human beings over the proper governance of a country. There are people on different sides with different opinions. Even among those who may be terribly wrong-headed, there are good folks trying to do their best. Such a scenario is, or should be, more like a football game than a war. On any given play, a good outcome is when you move the ball six or seven yards in your direction. When a Paul Ryan or Mitt Romney fails to walk whistling into the end zone, he is not a traitor to the team. And -- dropping the metaphor -- even when people stray from the purest form of your philosophy, they are often not villains but only allies who disagree.
We're a long way from Ronald Reagan's approach to compromise. He wrote in his autobiography, An American Life, about what he knew about compromise.
Although I may have been a former actor, I knew something about negotiating. As president of the Screen Actors Guild, I’d matched wits with some of the shrewdest negotiators on the planet—people like Jack Warner, Y. Frank Freeman, the president of Paramount, MGM’s Louis B. Mayer, and the heads of the other studios.

When I began entering into the give and take of legislative bargaining in Sacramento, a lot of the most radical conservatives who had supported me during the election didn’t like it. “Compromise” was a dirty word to them and they wouldn’t face the fact that we couldn’t get all of what we wanted today. They wanted all or nothing and they wanted it all at once. If you don’t get it all, some said, don’t take anything.

I’d learned while negotiating union contracts that you seldom got everything you asked for. And I agreed with FDR, who said in 1933: “I have no expectations of making a hit every time I come to bat. What I seek is the highest possible batting average.”

If you got seventy-five or eighty percent of what you were asking for, I say, you take it and fight for the rest later, and that’s what I told these radical conservatives who never got used to it.
If conservatives had adopted that attitude, they might not be filled with such hatred and derision for Republicans in Washington for not accomplishing the impossible in the midst of divided government. And the answer was not to vote for a Democrat pretending to be a Republican who is actually the ultimate insider as he brags about how he's paid off politicians for his financial benefit and now talks about how he wants to raise the minimum wage, impose tariffs, and raise taxes.

Victor Davis Hanson explores
all the ways that Obama's actions have led to having a reality star one election away from the White House.
It is now old wisdom that Barack Obama created Trump—as in the idea of a national pushback to Obama’s out-of-the-mainstream agendas and the unconstitutional way in which he pursued them. Forgotten is the insulation that Obama has also provided for the excesses of Trump as a candidate and, especially, if he were to be president.

Last week, in sober and judicious tones Obama all but warned Americans that they cannot seriously support Trump, who, he implied, is little more than a reality-TV conman. But such admonitions come from a president whose chief foreign policy advisor, a failed fiction writer and D.C. insider, just bragged how he deceived the media and Washington’s insider world by feeding amateurish journalists misleading talking points. Is it serious or in the spirit of reality TV for a president to invite to the White House a rapper whose court-ordered ankle monitor goes off in a presidential ceremony, or to give an exclusive interview with YouTube personality GloZell, noted for her selfies of eating breakfast cereal floating about her in a bathtub? Obama has lectured the media that they have to vent Trump, this from a candidate who never released his medical or college records, whose speech in praise of Rashid Khalidi was suppressed by the media, and whose entire memoir was only belatedly found out to be impressionistic fiction. Obama lowered the bar and Trump skipped over it.

Can Trump mislead much more than did Obama, who assured Americans that they would never lose their doctor or health plan but rather save money and have better care, and that pulling peacekeepers from Iraq would ensure a stable and self-reliant country? Obama, remember, also bragged abroad that he had all but closed Guantanamo within a year and would stop the Bush habit of piling up more debt? After Ben Rhodes and Jonathan Gruber, what exactly are the presidential standards on veracity that we must hold Trump to? (Links in original)
Read the rest of Hanson's column as he finds example after example of how Obama has set the pattern that Trump is now eclipsing from ignoring the Constitution to using vicious or sarcastic language about those whom he doesn't approve. And the reaction of Trump's followers as they rush to defend every egregious statement he makes echoes the adoration of Obama's supporters.
Trump, as the media has shown, is certainly a crude narcissist. But will he learn to boast as a smooth egoist that he can lower the seas and cool the planet? Does he insist that he is a better political handler and speechwriter than his handlers and speechwriters? Does he claim that he will be the fourth best president in U.S. history—albeit in an outer-borough accent rather than in an Ivy League mellifluous patois? “I,”“me” “mine” and “my” are now the normal baggage of a presidential speech.

As for the supposed fanatical Trumpsters, have they gone berserk with wild praise of Trump in near divine terms? Has a Laura Ingraham or Charles Hurt, or any other columnist, historian, talk show host, or journalist said that Trump’s neat pant crease presages that he will be a great president or that Trump makes his leg tingle, or confessed that Trump is a god, or assured that Trump would be the smartest president in the history of the office? So far, I have not read any such embarrassment in the Washington Times or American Conservative. After Obama, biased deification of a presidential candidate is old hat.
When Democrats snicker at Trump, they should recognize that he's just a less debonair version of Obama.
The point is not to whitewash Trump’s crudity and outlandishness, but to explain why it so far has not eliminated him as a candidate. Obama’s outright destruction of presidential protocols created candidate Trump. The media, which in Faustian fashion mortgaged its soul to empower Obama, has now lost all credibility as a legitimate critic and arbiter of the dangers of narcissism, half-educated pop knowledge, polarizing politics, and demonization of one’s critics.

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In case you were considering voting for the Libertarian candidate, Gary Johnson, this year because you're just so disgusted with the choice between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, here is a nice summary of what there is to like and question about Johnson.

Eliot Abrams has an interesting look at what it's like when you can't stand your party's candidate as he tells the story about being a Scoop Jackson Democrat in 1972. It's a good look behind the scenes from that period in history. He tells of how Jimmy Carter, who had supported Jackson, had actually asked Jackson to recommend to McGovern to pick Carter for vice president. And Abrams finds some lessons for Republicans this year from the trauma of the Democrats in 1972.
Today, that same situation will obtain: Conservatives seem unlikely to switch to a Democratic party whose heart and soul are with Bernie Sanders and whose candidate will be Hillary Clinton. Nothing we want is to be found in that party. Nor did we in 1972 believe a third-party candidacy was a smart maneuver, again because we believed the Democratic party could be won back—and thought a thorough trouncing of McGovern would be useful in winning it back. Republicans who will never vote for Trump need to decide whether the best way to win the party back is to support a conservative third-party candidate who can powerfully make the case for our principles or just vote for the down-ticket races, write in Ben Sasse for president, and let Trump fail colossally. In 1972 and 1973 there were complaints that people like Scoop Jackson had deserted McGovern, but the size of his defeat made it obvious that a few more endorsements or rallies would have done little to ameliorate his crushing loss.

The final lesson of the 1972 campaign and what followed it is that arguments matter. The Jackson Democrats had views: strong arguments about American foreign policy and strong critiques of McGovern and for that matter the d├ętente policies the Republicans were following in those years. We argued and argued, and when we saw Ronald Reagan making some of the same arguments we jumped on his bandwagon. Republicans who oppose Trump need to keep making the arguments that candidates like Rubio and Cruz and Bush made this year unsuccessfully. It didn't work this time but it can work next time, when voters see Trump collapse—and when they see an increasingly dangerous world and a Clinton administration wedded to a bloated federal government as the solution to every problem. Next time, in 2020, we'll have had 12 years of Obama and Clinton, Hillary will be in her mid-seventies, Trump will be gone, and a new generation of Republican leaders like Rubio and Cruz and Ryan and Cotton and Haley and Sasse will still be in their forties.

Veterans want the money Trump raised in their names.

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Gosh, it was a terrible weekend in Chicago.
Six men were killed and at least 39 other people have been wounded in shootings across the city over Mother’s Day weekend.
Sadly, that is just a typical weekend in a city that has some of the toughest gun control laws in the country.

San Francisco is thinking of letting 16- and 17-year olds vote in local elections. Having young people who mostly don't have jobs or pay taxes vote is one way to get more liberals elected. I wouldn't have thought that that was a problem in San Francisco. But, as Debra Saunders writes, it's a contrast for other nanny-state policies in the city.
Only Ken Loo, the nonelected fireman in the Wednesday debate, talked sense. "The voter age should be 18," he said. Most kids under 18 "don't have a job yet. Most of them don't have an income yet." Loo charged Wiener, Kim and other supporters with "hypocrisy" for pushing the "nanny state" -- San Francisco voted to raise the age at which adults can buy cigarettes to 21, before Gov. Jerry Brown signed a similar state law. City Hall thinks "you're not responsible enough at age 18, 19 and 20" to choose to buy, or not buy, tobacco. Yet somehow 16-year-olds are responsible enough to decide who passes such laws.

(Like Loo, I would discourage any adult from smoking, but it is legal and I don't think the government has the right to outlaw a legal activity for law-abiding adults. The same goes for the drinking age.)

Last year, when Avalos was pushing his vote at 16 measure, I asked him whether he believed 16- and 17-year-olds should be able to buy cigarettes. No, he replied. Giving a teenager the right to vote, he added, is "very different from saying someone is adult." Somehow San Francisco has constructed a system where adults cannot choose to buy legal products -- tobacco -- while children should be encouraged to vote for the folks who write these crazy laws.
Saunders points out that conservatives pushed legislation to establish 21 as the legal drinking age. But liberals push even more ridiculously contradictory policies.
Liberals have blurred the lines much further. Girls of any age can elect to have an abortion in California, but they can't get a tattoo without parental consent until they are 18. Liberals construct fancy arguments to justify the differences, but we know that they are using age as a pretext to trample on the rights of free adults to do things they do not like. If you fit their politics, they want to expand your franchise. If you do not, they feel free to tell you what you cannot do. Next stop: You have to be 21 to buy a gun to protect yourself.
Jazz Shaw writes on the same topic and how we struggle to define when people become adults.
We obviously have a wildly inconsistent and conflicted attitude toward what constitutes adulthood in America and there doesn’t seem to be much in the way of clarity as to how to resolve it or even if it needs to be fully resolved. We allow young men and women to not only enlist in the military but to enter basic training and begin their active duty service at 17. (I turned 18 in boot camp myself.) And yet while you’re old enough to fight and die for your country you are too immature to buy a pack of cigarettes or drink a beer. At what age are you enough of an adult to get married and start a family? It’s generally held to be 18, but with parental consent it can be as young as 13. (Thanks, New Hampshire!) Then again, in Mississippi you have to be 21. It’s pretty crazy all the way around.

When it comes to responsibility for committing a crime, how are we supposed to handle this? The linked report cites psychiatrists who claim that the brain isn’t fully formed and prepared to fully grasp concepts like personal responsibility and consequences prior to the age of 18 or even higher. But many of the cops I know in a couple of major metropolitan areas will tell you that the 17 year olds they run into in lower income, high crime areas are far from “children” by that age and some have lengthy criminal records already, largely due to environmental factors. The courts allow flexibility in particularly heinous cases and treat much younger kids as adults when they commit murder and other violent crimes. Just last December in Baltimore we saw a 14 year old scheduled for trial as an adult in the rape and murder of a 16 year old girl. Reading the details of the charges it’s hard to argue that this was “just a kid.”
And what happens when our nanny-state propensity meets up with feminist demands for control of their own bodies?
A pregnant woman shows up at a New York City bar and wants to go in and order a drink despite health warnings against consuming alcohol while expecting. Should the tavern serve her?

It's against the law to refuse, under city Human Rights Commission guidelines released Friday. They center on expansive protections for pregnant workers but also say mothers-to-be can't be kept out of bars or denied alcoholic drinks just because they're expecting.

"Judgments and stereotypes about how pregnant individuals should behave, their physical capabilities and what is or is not healthy for a fetus are pervasive in our society and cannot be used as pretext for unlawful discriminatory decisions" in public venues, the new guidelines say....

How to treat pregnant women who use intoxicants has long been debated in the U.S. Some states allow criminal charges against women who use illegal drugs while pregnant or permit detaining expectant mothers who drink heavily. And a pregnant drinker was portrayed as a moral dilemma on the ABC hidden-camera show "What Would You Do?" which featured bar patrons' varied reactions to an actress who appeared to be pregnant unabashedly guzzling tequila.

The U.S. Surgeon General and major medical associations say women should avoid alcohol during pregnancy. An American Academy of Pediatrics reiterated the admonition last October.
Yes, because the concerns of the woman being treated differently from a non-pregnant woman trump any concern about the baby's ultimate health.

Daniel Pipes reminds us that this year is the 100-year anniversary of the Sykes-Picot Agreement in which Britain and France divided up the Middle East during WWI. It was a typical great power-approach to colonial lands being freed from the yoke of the Ottoman Empire as a result of the war. Meanwhile, the British were also promising that same land to the Jews and the Arabs. It was a moment of great cynicism. I wrote part of my honors thesis in college about the mutually exclusive promises that the British were making at the time. Pipes advises us not to make the same mistakes again.
Sykes-Picot has a lesson for the present day, a simple and important one: foreign powers must not attempt unilaterally to decide the fate of distant regions, and especially not in a clandestine manner. This may sound like outdated or obvious advice but, at a time of failed states and anarchy, the powers again find it tempting to take matters in their own hands, as they did in Libya in 2011, where their intervention failed dismally. Similar efforts could lie ahead in Syria, Iraq and Yemen. Beyond those conflicts, Michael Bernstam of the Hoover Institution has argued for a broader redrawing of the region’s “antiquated, artificial map.”

No. Rather than seek to impose their will on a weak, anarchic region, the powers should hold back and remind locals of their own need to take responsibility. Rather than treat Middle Easterners as perpetual children, outsiders should recognize them as adults and help them succeed. Only in this way, over time, will the volatile, brutal, failed Middle East evolve into something better. Only in this way will it overcome the foul legacy of Sykes-Picot.
The danger, however, to following Pipes' advice, is that hundreds of thousands of civilians might have to suffer and die while that evolution takes place.

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Thirteen hours of Hillary Clinton lying. And I bet that oppo researchers could compile many more such videos. ( Link via Thomas Lifson via Instapundit.)

Lying seems to be a defining trait of this administration as Michael Goodwin writes of "The Democratic Liars' Club" based on the NYT Magazine profile of Ben Rhodes who bragged about deceiving the media and public about the Iran deal.
The latest clincher is the admission of a top White House aide that much about the Iranian nuclear deal was a fabrication sold to a lazy, gullible press corps. Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes boasts that most reporters were too dumb to know or care they were being misled.

“The average reporter we talk to is 27 years old, and their only reporting experience consists of being around political campaigns,” Rhodes told The New York Times. “They literally know nothing.”

He said that much of what passed for independent analysis of Iran in the media was a regurgitation of White House talking points. “We created an echo chamber,” he gloated. “They were saying things that validated what we had given them to say.”

Rhodes thus joins the infamous Jonathan Gruber, the administration insider caught conceding that ObamaCare was designed to exploit the “stupidity of the American voter.” If people understood the plain meaning, Gruber said, the law would not have survived.

The twin admissions mean Obama’s self-described legacy accomplishments — the Iran deal and the Affordable Care Act — are fraudulent to the core. Even worse, Obama himself led the charge for both scams, insisting that anyone who opposed the Iran deal wanted war, and that under ObamaCare, “you can keep your doctor.”

The implications are enormous and resolve any doubts that Obama is a con man in a league of his own. Instead of getting the Nobel Peace Prize, he is worthy of the Joseph Goebbels Award for proving Goebbels’ claim that “if you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it.”

Unfortunately, both the Iran deal and ObamaCare will outlast Obama’s term and do lasting damage to America, and in the case of Iran, the whole world. They make Watergate look like amateur hour.
A Hillary Clinton victory in November would continue this tradition.

And Mayor de Blasio is following the model of mendacity.
As for Mayor de Blasio’s misconduct, it has not risen to such corrosive destructiveness, but that’s only because his office limits his opportunities. But as the hydra-headed scandals swallowing his mayoralty suggest, he has rarely missed an opportunity to deceive the public by saying one thing and doing another.

The latest report has the feds investigating his 2013 campaign, which comes on top of probes focused on possible financial shenanigans in 2014, 2015 and this year. In short, much of his career is suspected of being one long crime wave.

Like his pals in the Democratic Liars Club, de Blasio fights truth with imaginary victimization. “How convenient that when we’re doing a lot of work to help everyday people, there’s all sorts of efforts being made to obscure that work,” he said of the probes.

That disinformation echoes Obama’s nasty tendency to accuse dissenters of ignorance and corruption or, when that fails, racism. Clinton, of course, retreats behind charges of sexism and, when that fails, claims to spot a vast right-wing conspiracy.

In fact, there is a conspiracy. It comprises monstrous lies told not only against the truth, but also against the very soul of America.

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I thought that Donald Trump went to the Wharton School and knows business and economics better than anyone else in the world. So how does he think that it's a good idea to muse about treating the US debt the way he's treated his company's debt and talk about making the country's debtors take a haircut on payment?
One day after assuring Americans he is not running for president "to make things unstable for the country," the presumptive Republican nominee, Donald J. Trump, said in a television interview Thursday that he might seek to reduce the national debt by persuading creditors to accept something less than full payment.

Asked whether the United States needed to pay its debts in full, or whether he could negotiate a partial repayment, Mr. Trump told the cable network CNBC, "I would borrow, knowing that if the economy crashed, you could make a deal."

He added, "And if the economy was good, it was good. So, therefore, you can't lose."

Such remarks by a major presidential candidate have no modern precedent. The United States government is able to borrow money at very low interest rates because Treasury securities are regarded as a safe investment, and any cracks in investor confidence have a long history of costing American taxpayers a lot of money.
When I teach about mandatory spending, students ask why interest on the debt should be included and what would happen if we just didn't pay it back. I explain that, for one reason, we contracted to pay the debt back at that rate. Secondly, it would become extremely difficult to borrow money in the future if we established the pattern of not paying it back at the rate it was borrowed at. And looking at how we're spending money, we're still going to need to keep borrowing money. As CNBC writes, Trump's words show how being a businessman doesn't mean that one understands financial markets.
Repurchasing debt is a fairly common tactic in the corporate world, but it only works if the debt is trading at a discount. If creditors think they are going to get 80 cents for every dollar they are owed, they may be overjoyed to get 90 cents. Mr. Trump's companies had sometimes been able to retire debt at a discount because creditors feared they might default.

But Mr. Trump's statement might show the limits of translating his business acumen into the world of government finance. The United States simply cannot pursue a similar strategy. The government runs an annual deficit, so it must borrow to retire existing debt. Any measures that would reduce the value of the existing debt, making it cheaper to repurchase, would increase the cost of issuing new debt. Such a threat also could undermine the stability of global financial markets.
Can you imagine what would happen to financial markets if Trump were president and said the same thing? And notice that Trump isn't interested in restructuring entitlement spending so as to reduce the debt. He'd rather float the idea of forcing creditors to take a loss on the interest we've contracted to pay them. Allahpundit contrasts Trump's dangerous talk with Paul Ryan.
His comments are actually a perfect illustration of the fiscal divide between the two most prominent Republicans in the country now, Ryan and Trump. Ryan’s spent years agonizing over ways to gradually reduce entitlement spending precisely so that the country won’t have to go through what Trump’s imagining here, in which the feds’ creditworthiness begins to crumble due to spiralling interest payments, easy money from creditors dries up, and the lights start going out.

Ross Douthat make a good argument for what conservatives should be doing in the wake of Trump's success.
THERE are many lessons that conservatives need to learn from the rise of Donald Trump. There are elements of his message that the party should embrace. There are grievances among his voters that the Republican Party must address.

But for conservatives to support Trump himself, to assist in his election as president of the United States, would be a terrible mistake.

It would be a particularly stark mistake for conservatives who feel that the basic Reaganite vision that’s dominated their party for decades — a fusion of social conservatism, free-market economics, and a hawkish internationalism — still gets things mostly right.

In large ways and small, Trump has consistently arrayed himself against this vision. True, he paid lip service to certain Reaganite ideas during the primaries — claiming to be pro-life, promising a supply-side tax cut, pledging to appoint conservative judges. But the core of his message was protectionist and nativist, comfortable with an expansive welfare state, bored with religious conservatism, and dismissive of the commitments that constitute the post-Cold War Pax Americana. And Trump’s policy forays since clinching the nomination have only confirmed his post-Reagan orientation.

Reaganite conservatives who help elevate Trump to the presidency, then, would be sleepwalking toward a kind of ideological suicide. Successful party leaders often transform parties in their image. William Jennings Bryan and Woodrow Wilson between them turned a conservative Democratic Party progressive. Dwight Eisenhower all but extinguished G.O.P. isolationism. Reagan himself set liberal Republicanism on the path to extinction.

A successful President Trump (and to support him is to hope for such a thing) could easily do the same to Reaganism. In a fully-Trumpized G.O.P., Reagan’s ideological coalition would crack up, with hawks drifting toward the Democrats, supply-siders fading into crankery, religious conservatives entering semi-permanent exile. And in its place a Trumpized Republican intelligentsia would arise, with as little interest in Reaganism as today’s conservatives have in the ideas of Nelson Rockefeller or Jacob Javits.

Donald Trump - such a gentleman.
[Howard] Stern has a knack for teasing out the soulful side of Trump, as he did again years later, during a poignant reflection on the inconstancy of beauty, the stamina of love and the possibility of vehicular mishap.

“Melania is in a horrible car accident,” Stern hypothesized. “She survives.” But one of her arms is paralyzed, one of her feet is mangled and one of her eyes is a ceaselessly oozing sore.

“How do the breasts look?” Trump asked, ever in search of the silver lining.

“The breasts are O.K.,” Stern responded.

“That’s important,” Trump said, adding that in such a case of mammary mercy, he would stay by Melania’s side.

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Here's a tale of what happens when someone who isn't sufficiently liberal appears on The Daily Show. Gavin McInnes relates what happened when he was interviewed about an article he'd written about feminism and women's soccer and how the complaint that women players aren't paid as much as men is a bogus statistic. Here is what happened.
What emerged was exactly what I expected, a totally edited segment that ignored my argument and attempted to depict me as a crazy person. They actually said “lunatic.” It aired Wednesday night and Media Matters grabbed it the next morning, claiming I’d been “called out.” We spoke for over an hour and I explained my position very clearly. Yes, American women’s soccer is on the rise and they did get unprecedented eyeballs for a game in 2015, but it was the World Cup. Though it would appear they were compensated less for all this success, their pay structure is very different from male soccer players’ so it’s almost impossible to accurately compare. Furthermore, the women’s soccer union negotiated this deal, so if they’re unhappy with how it played out, their problem remains in-house. This was all cut, of course, and we were left with a twisted response that ended with them taking a joke I made and pretending I was serious.

Though I’m confident I can discuss feminism and economics with clarity, I don’t actually know soccer players’ names, so when Minhaj asked me to name a few, I joked, “Bobby Daniels, Ziggler Norris, and a guy known to everyone as Junebug.” The last name was used to make it extra clear I was kidding. They had no idea. I know this because after the interview I told them they were made-up names and they were surprised. In the interview the correspondent was impressed with the names and called them “deep cuts.” In the edit they stick in a face where Minhaj sarcastically feigns interest like I’m an idiot. This is all over the interview. When you’re done talking, they capture a series of correspondent reactions they can put in later and they include this exasperated brow-pinching thing you do when you’re talking to a complete moron. On top of these edits, they add in voice-over where Minhaj can sound tough and yell, “You’re 0 for 2, Gavin” and “If you’re going to make up a name, you need to do better than Junebug.” Yeah, I know. That’s what a joke is.
McInnes goes on to detail how many people are involved to make Minhaj look good and him look bad.
Of course, the editing and voice-over are only the beginning. They had a team of researchers handling The Daily Show’s side of the argument. In the interview, the producer Stacey Angeles had her iPad ready to further Google any contradictions. “I want my information to be correct,” barked Minhaj at her when he appeared to be losing. His lap had a pile of notes on it, but they weren’t sufficient. They also had weeks afterward to carefully select a morsel that makes their argument look good. In the end, they were forced to pretend my joke was serious and put all their eggs in that basket. It was everything they accuse James O’Keefe of doing.

The staff and resources it took to make me look bad was downright alarming. When you factor in rents and salaries it must have cost a fortune to frame me and they still did a terrible job. Millennials will tell you that it’s just a comedy show and I’m overanalyzing it, but these same millennials get most of their news from shows like this
Conservatives consenting to go on The Daily Show should bring along their own cameramen to tape what really goes on and put it up on the web to contrast with the highly edited version that goes on TV.

Rick Moran at PJ Media links to the story of a couple of college students who just got expelled over their very dumb hate-crime hoax.
Are these the dumbest hate crime hoaxers in history? They violated the first rule of racial grievancing: Always make sure there isn't a video that can contradict your false claims.

In truth, incidents like this make it more difficult for those who are victimized by real hate crimes. Like women making false sexual assault claims against men, it damages the credibility of real victims who must overcome a skeptical public to advance their case.

The hoaxes won't stop until the police start sending people to jail. It's not just making a false statement to police - which is a serious enough crime itself. A hate crime hoax heightens emotions of blacks and whites and could lead to violence. For that reason, send the perpetrators to jail for a couple of months as an object lesson in violating the tranquility of the community.
Sounds like a plan to me.


Suvy Boyina said...

Yea, I don't see how a strict Constitutionalist conservative who cares about small government could vote for Hillary or Trump. They're both big government Yankee liberals. Trump is not a conservative. So with all of that being said, I think Gary Johnson could do very well this year. He's got a strong record against big government and vetoed almost half of the legislation sent to him as governor. Even if he gets 10-15% of the vote, that'd be huge in terms of the legitimacy of the Libertarian Party.

Usually, most libertarians are nutjobs, but Johnson is quite sane. Everyone actually concerned with limited government should--at the very least--give him a look. I'll also add that if Johnson does well, I think he hands the election to Hillary. However, the differences between Trump and Hillary are largely minuscule from a small government vantage point.

Marshall said...

Betsy, you (and Klavin) have it all wrong on "compromise" -- and blaming conservatives for not finding common ground with the Democrats. It is they who won't compromise (Obama famously said, "I won").

The problem the Republicans have is they overlook a simple solution: power of the purse: Revenue bills must originate in the House and by convention, appropriations bills as well.

The House is NOT compelled to structure appropriations bills in any set format and can instead pass individual bills to fund specific programs and departments (No Congress can bind future Congresses to specific "house" rules). The advantages of separating spending bills into smaller pieces are:

1. The House can freely exercise its "power of the purse" by refusing to lump individual appropriations into "Omnibus Spending Bills". Currently, the House can only threaten to "shut down the government" if agreement cannot be reached with the Senate and the President. Individual spending bills would allow the House to fund the functions of the government individually, without impacting other functions.

Thus, the Senate or the President (or the press) could not claim, "the XXXX (insert party in control of the House)" wants to shut the government down if they don't get EVERYTHING they want." Whole departments could be defunded. Even entitlement spending can be reduced in the same manner. The difference between discretionary spending and entitlements is that folks can sue the government if they don't get their "Obama Phones". However, funding for such resulting judgments must also be authorized by the House (judges cannot print money).

The only disadvantage to this strategy is that it will be much more difficult for House members and the leadership to "hide" monies in other appropriations bills -- earmarks and the like. This is actually a good thing.