Friday, February 24, 2017

Cruising the Web

The Washington Post points how how much Trump's new National Security Adviser, Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster differs with Trump on policy. THey differ on whether or not Russia is a threat and whether we should be work within multinational organizations like NATO. When it comes to the best way to respond to Islamist terrorism, Trump just riffs idiotically without any real understanding of what he's bloviating about. McMaster helped design the most successful counterinsurgency effort our country has been involved in since 9/11.
McMaster and Trump have very different understandings of the right strategic response to terrorism. Trump has lamented that the United States did not take Iraq’s oil and quipped that terrorists’ family members should be targeted. By contrast, in Iraq, McMaster developed counterinsurgency doctrines in which soldiers worked not just to destroy targets but to protect populations and win local communities’ hearts and minds.

Trump speaks of terrorism and Islam as if they were nearly synonymous. On the record, he has stated that “Islam hates us” and that there is “tremendous hatred” within the religion itself. McMaster discusses Islam in a manner consistent with the tactful U.S. foreign policy formulation that’s been used over the last decade. He refers to militant Islamists with the moniker “salafi jihadists” — referring to the Islamist ideal of restoring a bygone glory. McMaster says such practices have a “perverted” and “irreligious interpretation” of Islam.

For McMaster, the sources of Middle Eastern angst are primarily political. He explains the Afghanistan and Iraq insurgencies through a narrative of grievances exacerbated by “ethnic, tribal, and sectarian polarization.” As a student of the 19th-century German military thinker Carl von Clausewitz, McMaster is wary of promising fast and cheap victories.
Promising "fast and easy victories"? That's Trump's usual M.O. for all policies. Perhaps, Trump will allow himself to learn from the man he just chose as his National Security Adviser. We can only hope.

Ben Shapiro has some very important advice for conservatives: don't assume, simply because a group or person is in opposition to the same groups you are, that those groups and people are your friends. Just because those on the left don't like someone, doesn't mean that conservatives need to embrace that person.
Unfortunately, many conservatives have embraced this sort of binary thinking: If it angers the Left, it must be virtuous. Undoubtedly, that’s a crude shorthand for political thinking. It means you never have to check the ideas of the speaker, you merely have to check how people respond to him.

That’s dangerous. It leads to supporting bad policies and bad men. The enemy of your enemy isn’t always your friend. Sometimes he’s your enemy. Sometimes he’s just a dude sitting there minding his own business.

You don’t have enough information to know.

The logic of “if he melts snowflakes, he’s one of us” actually hands power to the Left, by allowing leftists to define conservatives’ friends. It gets to choose whom we support. This isn’t speculative. It happened during the 2016 primaries, when the media attacked Trump incessantly, driving Republicans into his outstretched arms. The media’s obvious hatred for Trump was one of the chief arguments for Trump from his advocates: If, as his detractors claimed, he wasn’t conservative, then why would the leftist media hate him so much?
But it's not enough to be hated the MSM. That' doesn't mean that someone, er, President Trump for example, is automatically right and good in everything he says and does.
If the media opposed Trump with all their heart and all their soul, that must have been some sort of reaction to Trump himself.

It wasn’t, though. It was a combination of factors, including the fact that Trump was amazing press and the press thought Trump an unusually weak candidate. More-honest leftist commentators openly preferred Trump to more-conservative candidates such as Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio.

But Trump’s war with the media carried him to the nomination, and from there to the presidency.

In fact, Trump continues to live off of this backward logic. His press conference last week was no ballet of informational expertise and policy knowledge, nor was it a brilliant recasting of his policy successes. It was a blunderbuss attack on the media, entertaining in the extreme, occasionally daft, occasionally ridiculous. Yet many on the right immediately concluded that it was the most successful press conference in world history, not because it was successful with Americans per se — there was no evidence of that — but because it was a successful assault on the media, who had it coming.

Never mind if Trump lied to the media. They were angry. That showed it worked. Watching Chuck Todd fulminate and Chris Wallace rage and Don Lemon bemusedly tut-tut scratched conservatives where they itch — and it made Trump a hero.

None of this is to argue that Trump is a leftist or that conservatives are wrong to support many of his policy prescriptions. But if your standard of right and wrong is whether the Left hates it, you’re making a category error.

It’s not good enough to just be opposed by the Left – you must actually oppose the Left. We must ask what someone is fighting against, not merely whom. We must ask what tools they’re using — and we must insist they use the truth. Ideas and values matter more than identity.

But not anymore. The Left’s identity politics is focused on racial, ethnic, and sexual identity — aspects of identity that place you somewhere in the hierarchy of intersectionality. The Right’s identity politics comes with a label: enemy of the Left. So long as you’re wearing that button, you’re presumptively on our side and you’re nearly bulletproof.

Until it turns out that you’re not. Until we jump the wrong way because we substituted political laziness for a philosophy. Until we embrace somebody nasty because the other side hated him or her and stop caring about truth so long as the other side is triggered.
So many times, on Twitter or in comments from my blog's readers, people will criticize me for criticizing Trump and the basic argument is that Trump makes the right enemies. He's driving the media nuts and it's about time that someone did that. They're just sitting back and chomping on the popcorn enjoying his press conference because he's attacking the media. But that' isn't enough. There are actual policy changes that conservatives should want to see enacted. And we're going to need a president with political skills to help figure out the right policies and then how to push them through. And we're living in a toxic, partisan environment. It would be difficult for the most gifted politician to enact the sorts of policies on taxes, health care, immigration, regulatory reform that conservatives would like to see happen. Those conservatives who wish to see those policy changes take place should be asking themselves whether Trump's bluster and organizational deficiencies are furthering those goals, instead of thinking that having him attack journalists is sufficient fun for the next four years.

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Of course, the media deserve all the opprobrium that they receive from conservatives. Jonah Goldberg riffs on Mika Brzezinski's Kinsley gaffe this week when she said it was the mission of the press to "control exactly what people think."
Consider the hot topic of the moment: illegal immigration. The syndicate that distributes the column you are reading follows the AP Stylebook, which says that I am not allowed to refer to “illegal immigrants” (i.e., people who migrate illegally), but I can refer to illegal immigration (i.e., the act of migrating illegally). Kathleen Carroll, then the senior vice president and executive editor of the Associated Press, explained that the change was part of the AP’s policy against “labeling people.”

Many news outlets followed suit, using such terms as “unauthorized” or “undocumented” to describe immigrants formerly known as illegal.

The move was hailed by left-wing immigration activists as a great leap forward. And for good reason: It is part of their agenda to blur the distinctions between legal and illegal immigration, and to make it sound as if objecting to the former is morally equivalent to objecting to the latter. But as a matter of fact and logic, the difference between an “unauthorized immigrant” and an “illegal immigrant” is nonexistent.

The media play these kinds of linguistic games all the time. Economics professor Tim Groseclose walks readers through countless examples in his book Left Turn: How Liberal Media Bias Distorts the American Mind. Partial-birth abortion virtually never appears without a “so-called” before it, and the procedure is virtually never described clearly. The word “kill” is almost never used to describe any abortion, despite the fact that this is what happens. Whenever some great sweeping piece of liberal social legislation is passed by Democrats, it’s a “step forward.” Whenever a law is repealed, Republicans are “turning back the clock.”

The language games are part of a larger tendency of journalists to follow certain scripts that conform to how coastal elites see the country.

In 2015, during the ridiculous hysteria over Indiana’s religious-freedom law (since revised), a news reporter went around a small town asking business owners about the law. The owner of Memories Pizza, Crystal O’Connor, said anyone could eat there, but they’d probably turn down a job to cater a gay wedding. The story was immediately blown up by national news outlets as proof of some prairie fire of anti-gay discrimination, even though no one had been discriminated against. Memories Pizza had to shut down.

My hunch is that O’Connor nodded along when Trump said the press is the enemy of the American people.

For those liberals trembling in fear about Trumpian authoritarianism, David French presents a thoughtful counter-argument that Trump is "trending less authoritarian than Obama.
Lost in most of the coverage of President Trump’s decision to rescind the Obama administration’s transgender mandates is a fundamental legal reality — the Trump administration just relinquished federal authority over gender-identity policy in the nation’s federally funded schools and colleges.

In other words, Trump was less authoritarian than Obama. And that’s not the only case. Consider the following examples where his administration, through policy or personnel, appears to be signaling that the executive branch intends to become less intrusive in American life and more accountable to internal and external critique.
Trump's nominee for the Supreme Court is known for arguments against extended administrative overreach. Gorsuch has argued that the bureaucracy should not be making decisions that really belong in the purview of the legislative branch.
By overturning judicial precedents that currently require judicial deference to agency legal interpretations, the Court could put a stop to the current practice of presidents and bureaucrats steadily (and vastly) expanding their powers by constantly broadening their interpretations of existing legal statutes.

For example, the EPA has dramatically expanded its control over the American economy even without Congress passing significant new environmental legislation. Instead, the EPA keeps revising its interpretation of decades-old statutes like the Clean Air Act, using those new interpretations to enact a host of comprehensive new regulations. If Gorsuch’s argument wins the day, the legislative branch would be forced to step up at the expense of the executive, no matter how “authoritarian” a president tried to be.
The real reason that those on the left are so worried about certain policies enunciated by the Trump administration is for this very reason. Liberals prefer to have decisions made by unelected bureaucrats and judges rather than having the power that they've accrued in the past decades given back to Congress and the states.
Indeed, if you peel back the layer of leftist critiques of Trump’s early actions and early hires, they contain a surprising amount of alarmism over the rollback of governmental power. Education activists are terrified that Betsy DeVos will take children out of government schools or roll back government mandates regarding campus sexual-assault tribunals. Environmentalists are terrified that Scott Pruitt will make the EPA less activist. Civil-rights lawyers are alarmed at the notion that Jeff Sessions will inject the federal government into fewer state and local disputes over everything from school bathrooms to police traffic stops.

A president is “authoritarian” not when he’s angry or impulsive or incompetent or tweets too much. He’s authoritarian when he seeks to expand his own power beyond constitutional limits. In this regard, the Obama administration — though far more polite and restrained in most of its public comments — was truly one of our more authoritarian.
The contrast with Obama is stark.
Obama exercised his so-called prosecutorial discretion not just to waive compliance with laws passed by Congress (think of his numerous unilateral delays and waivers of Obamacare deadlines) but also to create entirely new immigration programs such as DACA and DAPA. He sought to roll back First Amendment protections for political speech (through his relentless attacks on Citizens United), tried to force nuns to facilitate access to birth control, and he even tried to inject federal agencies like the Equality Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) into the pastor-selection process, a move blocked by a unanimous Supreme Court. In foreign policy, he waged war without congressional approval and circumvented the Constitution’s treaty provisions to strike a dreadful and consequential deal with Iran....

Liberals were blind to Obama’s authoritarian tendencies in part because they agreed with his goals and in part because their adherence to “living Constitution” theories made the separation of powers far more conditional and situational. But authoritarianism is defined by how a president exercises power, not by the rightness of his goals. It’s early, and things can obviously change, but one month into the new presidency, a trend is emerging — Trump is less authoritarian than the man he replaced.
Boy, that sounds like a debate resolution that would really get people heated up. Authoritarianism, for some, is in the eye of the beholder. If you don't like Trump's policies, then you don't care how he's achieving them; he's still an authoritarian proto-fascist. If you like what Obama did, you don't care what means he used to achieve his ends. But not caring about how policies are achieved simply because you like the end result puts the country on a road to authoritarianism. Remember, the evasion of legislative solutions that Obama chose has set precedents that Trump and all the presidents who come after can emulate. That's why the Founding Fathers designed a system in which ambition can check ambition. As we're losing that, we're closer to an authoritarianism that should scare both sides of the ideological spectrum instead of being happy when the policies you like are the ones being enacted.

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Heather Wilhelm has some fun ridiculing the idea that leftist feminists have to have women's strike, ludicrously called "A Day Without a Woman."
If all goes according to plan, the Day Without a Woman will be actually a Day Chock-Full of Very Vexed Women Laser-Focused on Making You Late for Work. “The idea,” wrote the strike’s organizers in a February 6 group Guardian op-ed, “is to mobilize women, including trans women, and all who support them in an international day of struggle — a day of striking, marching, blocking roads, bridges, and squares, abstaining from domestic, care and sex work, boycotting, calling out misogynistic politicians and companies, striking in educational institutions.”

Ooh, that sounds effective! Just kidding. It sounds kind of annoying. But come on, let’s not be cynical. It’s for such a good cause, right? It’s all focused on truth and justice and good government, and a bipartisan response to specific policies proposed by the Trump administration, right? Well . . . let’s ask the organizers of the march. Spoiler alert: Here’s where things get a little foggy.

“On March 8th, International Women’s Day, women and our allies will act together creatively to withdraw from the corporations that harm us and find ways to support the businesses, organizations and communities that sustain us,” declares the Women’s March website, profiling its “Day Without a Woman.” Further questions, according to the March’s Twitter feed, include the following: “Do businesses support our communities, or do they drain our communities? Do they strive for gender equity or do they support the policies and leaders that perpetuate oppression? Do they align with a sustainable environment or do they profit off destruction and steal the futures of our children?”

Well! That’s strange. This seems like a standard, vague list of clich├ęd left-wing hobbyhorses, not a principled protest engaging current policy problems. Don’t worry, friends: Surely further research and reading will clarify things.

Well, okay, maybe not. Along with an end to “male violence” and, predictably, “a defense of reproductive rights” — in other words, abortion — “we also need to target the ongoing neoliberal attack on social provision and labor rights,”

....The upcoming “Women’s Strike” — and the dozens of iterations likely to come after it — has made it clear that it now has little to do with Donald Trump. It’s the same old leftist song and dance, desperate for a new marketing pitch. It’s a protest movement that would likely decry any Republican president — even if she were a woman. Beware, ladies. Beware.
How about "A Day Without a Leftist"? Sounds like it would be about the same thing. And no one would notice or care.

Lanae Erickson Hatalsky and Jim Kessler put forth an analysis in the Washington Post of why demographic changes in the United States have not led to a permanent Democratic majority.
Why did changing demographics not lead to electoral destiny for Democrats? Our report out this month provides several answers, starting with the fact that demographic change isn’t evenly dispersed. In our system of place-based government, unless millennials move to the rural South or the growing Latino population settles in equal measure across the Rust Belt, demography will take a long time. Take the U.S. House. Going into the 2016 cycle, the 159 House districts deemed safely Democratic by the nonpartisan Cook Political Report are already majority-minority. (The average is 45 percent white.) The 90 swing districts are 70 percent white — much closer to the breakdown in safe Republican districts, which number 186 and are 75 percent white on average.

The Senate is even more daunting, where 23 not very diverse states with 46 seats skew red, compared with only 13 states with 26 seats that cater blue. And despite Hillary Clinton’s popular-vote victory, Donald Trump won about 2,600 counties while she won 489. That might have been enough to keep the electoral college tally close, but it’s also a recipe for losing pretty much everything down ballot. So while national demographic numbers may continue to shift relatively quickly, they won’t significantly affect electoral outcomes if the changes are concentrated in the same cities and counties that already go blue.

“Demography equals destiny” also presumes voters are static beings with unwavering ideologies and consistent voting behavior. But voters aren’t merely reflections of their demographic characteristics, and it’s insulting to treat them that way. Young voters and voters of color aren’t monolithic liberal blocs who will always and reflexively support Democrats.

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Today is the 100-year anniversary of President Wilson being given the Zimmermann Telegram. That was the offer sent by the German foreign minister to German ambassador in Mexico offering an alliance with Mexico if they would attack the United States. They promised to help Mexico regain the land it had lost in the American Southwest after the Mexican-American War. The British intercepted the telegram and gave it to the Americans while making it public. The outrage over this helped pave the way for the U.S. to enter the First World War. Arthur Herman sees some lessons for the United States today from that long-ago diplomatic story.
What can we learn today from the Zimmermann Telegram? First, don’t underestimate America. In 1917 the Germans mistook self-restraint for weakness, and it cost them the war. Others would make the same mistake later: Japan and Germany in World War II, the Soviet Union at the start of the Cold War, al Qaeda on the eve of 9/11. Today Russia and China bid fair to make the miscalculation once again.

The second lesson is that conflicts will find America, even if America doesn’t seek them out. Just before his inauguration in 1912, Wilson remarked to a friend: “It would be the irony of fate if my administration had to deal chiefly with foreign affairs.” Yet two oceans didn’t make the U.S. safe from aggression then, and the danger is even greater in the age of ballistic missiles and cyber-attacks.

Wilson imagined he could keep the U.S. safe by staying aloof and above the fray. It took an intercepted telegram for him to realize that America had no choice but to act as a great power. One hundred years later, Mr. Trump should remember that Wilson’s realization has made the world—and us—safer.
Both my U.S. and European History classes just finished studying World War One. In both classes, at the end of the, unit, we listed all the political, economic, social, diplomatic, and cultural changes that emerged from that war. As I was writing all these consequences of the war on the board, it struck me that the changes for the U.S. and Europe resulting from this war were more momentous and long-reaching than from World War II. And just about none of them were predictable. Four empires collapsed and the tremors from those earthquakes coupled with the Russian Revolution are still being felt today. Not only was the map of Europe remade after the war, but so was the map of the Middle East as the Big Three drew boundaries of countries that had little correspondence to the ethnic divisions of that region. Ethnic and religious tensions today within Middle Eastern countries have roots at the Paris Peace Conference of 1919.

The economic position of the U.S. going from being a debtor to a creditor nation pushed us into being a great power whether we were able to realize it at the time or not. The changes for women and minorities rippled through society. Women achieved suffrage in many countries as a consequence of this war. Modernism in the arts, which had been beginning before the war, intensified and has altered all the arts since then, not for the better in my view. In the U.S, the reach of the federal government was stretched in ways that no Founder could have imagined, but progressives had been dreaming about. After a short hiatus in the 1920s, FDR would implement policies in the New Deal modeled on some of Wilson's policies put in place to run the country during wartime. When FDR asked in his first Inaugural address for "broad Executive power to wage a war against the emergency, as great as the power that would be given to me if we were in fact invaded by a foreign foe," it was the model of Wilson in World War One that he was thinking of. So as we remember the Great War, the centennial of which we've been commemorating since 2014, let's not forget all the unintended consequences that few can imagine that will emerge from any war that we again involve ourselves in.


trigger warning said...

Re French: Not only was the Buraq Obama regime authoritarian (school lunch, for Pete's sake), it was incompetently authoritarian, a deadly combination. Through idiotic and misguided "startup-style" aquisition and management, they exposed government agencies to a cybersecurity nightmare that will take years to repair. The Hill reported yesterday that GSA concluded:

"An inspector general’s report says that 18F, a startup-style group to provide digital products for federal agencies, failed to comply with a bevy of regulations. As a result, the department was awash in unapproved products purchased without requisite approvals."

This us what happens when ideologically-correct Skin Color Studies and Persian Lit majors are hired to run the government. The rallying cry will be "Remember the rollout of!!"

tfhr said...

"If, as [Trunp's] detractors claimed, he wasn’t conservative, then why would the leftist media hate him so much?" - Shapiro

I don't consider Trump to be a conservative BUT the answer to Shapiro's question would be the same for ANY candidate that dared to unseat the Queen on the eve of her blessed coronation. Shapiro knows as well as anyone that the MSM is wholly owned by the left and they back their candidate to the hilt, so his rhetorical question is a little disingenuous for my tastes.

What he seems to be deliberately missing here is this: While conservatives can find common cause with some of Trump's positions and most of us take comfort in his choices for national security team advisors and Supreme Court nominee, we view the Republican establishment, which mistakenly believes it is moderate (as opposed to impotent), as spending too much time complaining about Trump's rough edges while it failed to effectively counter Obama for eight long years. These same limp Republicans (McConnell, you know who you are) made Trump's ascendency possible.

I wanted to see Cruz as our next President but you can be sure that McCain and like-minded establishment figures in the Republican Party wouldn’t have lifted a finger to make that happen because they have no use for his conservative principles. The primary process was so poorly managed by the Party that it was absolutely worthless. I tuned it out before it even started. I stopped watching Fox because I got tired of the squabbling amongst Republicans and that network’s NYC centric obsession with Trump. I live in Maryland and by “virtue” of its blueness, it is effectively a flyover state for conservatives. I get how Americans in flyover states feel and it does seem to me that people on the coasts feel like the business of governing is all or nothing - and nothing ever in between.

I think it comes down to a choice between principles and opportunity. Instead of constantly bitching about how Trump offends you, use these next two years to nail down as law those conservative planks that Trump used in his platform to get the nomination and to beat Queen Hillary. There’s some good stuff there. The left could be doing the same where Trump sees things through what I consider to be a rather progressive lens. Trump says he’s all about making deals. It’s there but the left, so far, reflexively chooses to foam at the mouth and accuse Trump of being Hitler instead.

The establishment wing of the Republican Party is nearly as tone deaf at the left – and the Party’s leadership still doesn’t seem to understand why many Americans don’t see much difference between the Democrats and the Republicans when it comes down to the size and intrusive nature of government and its unwillingness to hear – to actually listen to – Americans.

Trump is an opportunist, one willing to make deals, so rather than wringing hands over principles that he may or may not possess (this goes for right and left), use the opportunity to make good things happen or at least get deals that include compromises that can help Americans.

trigger warning said...

My question to the Establishment conservatives: what have you conserved?

tfhr said...


Probably not fair that I answer for them but they've been rather unclear these past three or four election cycles, so here goes: I would suggest that they have been effective to the extent that they kept their places inside the Beltway. They've conserved a seat at the table/trough. They're at the Georgetown cocktail parties. Well except for Eric Cantor and John Boehner....

You get to be an extra in their movie. Now move along until we need you in 2020, they say. Someday when they figure out that their planes land at flyover country airports, they may change their tune but I won't hold my breath.

mardony said...

Oy vey! Another incredulous link (Shapiro, National Review) to America's most prestigious journal of white supremacy pontificating this canard:
"The Left’s identity politics is focused on racial, ethnic, and sexual identity...". Yeah, right (that canard is way right, in fact).
Look no farther than CPAC yesterday for participants (snowflake white), leaders, speakers, speech content, dog whistles, and wink-winks for what Republicanism has come to mean and who its principle constituents are. Fringe elements have taken over the administration (and most of the comments to this blog), and a ranting demagogue is their leader. And "compassionate conservatism" is on life support. And this blog ponders today how Republicanism can best move forward? (And stands up to its comment critics from wingnuttia?) Isn't revisionism that makes America great again doing that? What's the problem?

tfhr said...


Your reliance on smearing those with opinions that differ from yours as "white supremacists" suggests you lack the capacity to engage them effectively in the arena of ideas.

trigger warning said...

As my beloved English teacher auntie used to say, "Vituperation is the refuge of those with inadequate thinking skills."

tfhr said...


True enough but it is considered an asset on the left.

mardony said...

(This morning) "A few days ago I called the fake news the enemy of the people, and they are — they are the enemy of the people," Trump told the annual Conservative Political Action Conference. (chants of "lock her up" broke out minutes later among the all-white heartless claque of nodding donkeys)

(Yesterday morning) "We’re getting really bad dudes out of this country. And at a rate that nobody’s ever seen before. And they’re the bad ones. And it’s a military operation,” said Mr. Trump in a meeting with manufacturing CEOs at the White House.

(Yesterday morning, a little later) “There will be no use of military forces in immigration,” Gen. Kelly (Homeland Sec.) declared in a statement at the Mexican Foreign Ministry. “There will be no — repeat — no, mass deportations.”

Does this mean fake news is Trump's worst enemy? Sad that his real enemy is facts, not news.

The more cynical I get, the more one can't keep up.

mardony said...

Note to Betsy ~

Your blog and Bannen got my attention.

"Liberals prefer to have decisions made by unelected bureaucrats and judges rather than having the power that they've accrued in the past decades given back to Congress and the states." (Betsy, today)

"Civil-rights lawyers are alarmed at the notion that Jeff Sessions will inject the federal government into fewer state and local disputes over everything from school bathrooms to police traffic stops." (Betsy today citing D. French, Nat'l Review)

It's not just "civil-rights lawyers" and progressives, but all Americans who care about civil rights who are alarmed. As a reputed superb teacher of American History, you are well aware that this devious justification has been deployed again and again in our nation's history by states rightists on the wrong side of history's civil rights battles. This anti-federalism ploy was used to oppose abolitionists, fight women's suffrage, combat the repeal of Jim Crow laws, and battle same-sex marriage.

Darn right we're worried, despite being belittled for it by the likes of Nat'l Review. The National Review has an ugly history on civil rights. For detail, check historian D. Critchlow's 2007 book The Conservative Ascendancy, which documents that from its 1955 founding, its editors "opposed federal involvement in enforcing equal access to public accommodations and protecting black voting rights in the South" basing "their opposition on constitutional grounds and conservative resistance to radical social change." Critchlow noted that the rhetoric of Nat'l Review editors "overstepped the bounds of civility and was racially offensive."

When Bannen spoke yesterday of a "new political order" the meaning was clear to me and to his CPAC audience. Although civil rights advocacy is not a common theme of your blog, I hope Bannen got your attention. He got mine.

tfhr said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
tfhr said...


Your festering obsession with race is making you blind and crazy!

"This anti-federalism ploy was used to oppose abolitionists, fight women's suffrage, combat the repeal of Jim Crow laws, and battle same-sex marriage." ~ Blind, Crazy Mardony

You're certainly blind to irony and history. Just who was fighting abolitionists, women's suffrage, and the repeal of Jim Crow? When you Google that, be sure to use "Democrats" as your key word.

As for gay marriage - you can keep that - but the Koch brothers were supporting it long before Obama came out of the closet for it. Hillary too.

3...2...1..*KAPOW* (Mardony's head explodes covering floor with packing peanuts)

mardony said...

tfhr (toxic fetid hamster refuse) ~
Please explain how Greenland lost a trillion tons of ice in just four years. For the right answer, DeVos will give you a thorazine treat.

tfhr said...

Are we back to random topics?

OK, I'll try to answer but first, how many trillions of tons of ice is Greenland supposed to have? What is optimal? How many tons of ice has Greenland lost - and gained - over the last, say 10 million years?

All we really know is that the family long boat is still below the ice, despite the loss of four gazillion tons of it on Obama's watch.

(Good thing you didn't ask trigger because you just know he'd blame baby Harp seals for gnawing on it!)

mardony said...

tfhr ~
No the subject hasn't changed. On Feb. 9, as you were doing your usual Grog (from B.C.) imitation in Betsy's comments section, this time asserting that global warming was weather, I gave you this test to provide explanations. You have come up with zilch.

One last chance: Please focus your Grog caveman IQ on these, one by one please, no omissions, no weaseling.

Increases in earth, ocean, and atmospheric temperatures
Rises in sea levels
The melting glaciers worldwide
The thinning of the Greenland Ice Sheet
Increases in ocean acidification
Losses of Arctic sea ice
Atmospheric concentrations of CO2 and other greenhouse gases are increasing.
Worldwide humidity is increasing
Snow is decreasing in North Am.
The Antarctic ice crack is growing and ice is decreasing.

tfhr said...


It hasn't changed? Your topics change faster than the weather, Mardony. Just a few hours ago you were squealing about the National Review being a "white supremacy" publication and then you embarrassingly trotted out a Democrat hallmark like Jim Crow to attack federalism. Things like that would give me whiplash if I did that! I'd switch to a new topic too, if I were you.

So today is 25 FEB. If you want to resume a topic from 09 FEB, that's OK with me but if you want to abandon this current thread now because you're having your ass handed to you, I just have to ask if we will rejoin your racist-under-every-bed rantings 16 days from now? I don't want to be caught sleeping, so to speak.

Ha! I have to laugh for thinking you could go two weeks without branding someone as a racist! Never mind.

OK, did you do some research since 09 FEB?

You have a lot of questions; I have one: What is the optimal climate condition necessary to provide you with perfect man-made, Utopian weather?

Seriously, Mardony. If you believe politicians can control the weather, then what are they saying our global "thermostat" should be set at? There must be some sort of constant that must be achieved.

Or is this really about redistribution of wealth, perhaps?

mardony said...

tfhr Grog ~
Yup, Strom Thurmond, the Jim Crow king, was a Democrat (your favorite kind), until he switched to become a Republican after 1964. Why? Because he opposed the Civil Rights Act (like you).
He fathered a child with a 16 yr-old black maid and died a weasel, never owning up to it. Yup, your kind of Democrat.

tfhr said...


If nothing else, it is entertaining to watch you unravel.

While far from being a favorite of mine - just about like anyone that stays beyond two terms in DC - you should not lie about Thurmond on the matter of his daughter.

Besides that it is wrong to lie, here is the truth about Thurmond's daughter, Essie Mae Washington:

* She was his first daughter and was born in 1925 when he was a 22 year old lawyer

* He paid for her education at South Carolina State College while he was governor (I know, it's not your elite Harvard, but Thurmond also continued to help her with finances for some time after school)

During the time, I was in my sophomore year at South Carolina State. And at this time, he was the governor. And he would go around to the various colleges. When he came to South Carolina State, he asked the president how was I doing. And he sent for me. I was in my dorm at the time. A young lady came over and said, "The governor would like to see you in the president's office."

* She said she kept silent out of respect for her father and denied the two had agreed she would not reveal her connection to Thurmond.

So neither one of -- we didn't have any agreement of not talking about it. We just didn't talk about it, neither one of us. And actually, he wouldn't you know. And I didn't want to do this.

I had been asked a question, "Why have you waited so long?" Well, because I didn't want to do anything to harm his career. And it wouldn't have been any advantage to me. So, I didn't talk about it.

So who do you think Thurmond was keeping it all a secret from? Who was asking or really "cared" - until he became a Republican?

You should read Essie Mae Washington's interview with Dan Rather. She comes off as a very nice person and very genuine, especially in comparison to Gunga Dan, as he searches desperately for a way to squeeze something tawdry out of her.

It's sickening that people like you try so hard to turn her story over with your pitchforks until it meets your sick brand of politics. I think Thurmond lived up to his responsibilities as a 22 year old single attorney having a mixed race child out of wedlock, especially in that era. Of course he went on to be a Democrat stalwart in South Carolina politics and when it came to the Civil Rights bill he followed the same path as most Dems of his day and age. He compares well with Fulbright (Bill Clinton's mentor) and Albert Gore (Fat Al's sire). Go see how many other Democrats voted against the Civil Rights bill and compare that with the Republicans.

Go ahead. I'll wait. Really. Do some reading because right now you're blocking punches with your face and it's getting tedious.

tfhr said...


I think I should call you "Ricochet", since you're all over the place today. I was waiting for you to get back on your Global Climate Warming Change Jihad and now you're back to the race card with Strom Thurmond. Whatever. I just added this note because I forgot to put in bold font the part about how and why Thurmond and his daughter kept things quiet.

Go read the Rather/60 Minutes transcript and get back to me about why you tried that cheap shot instead of climbing back on that sad dog sled headed to the South Pole.

I'm glad you say you're against racism. Maybe someday you'll actually BE against racism. It's never too late to make a good change.

tfhr said...


Nothing heard in response to the dressing down you received for your ugly attempt to use Essie Mae Washington.

You should be ashamed but first you'd need to have some underlying sense of decency for that - and we both know it's not in you.

I suspect you've been sitting there thinking, "If only Thurmond could have convinced that maid to get an abortion...." But then your horrid day dream would have been interrupted at the sudden thoughts of what kind of money might have been generated and poured into campaign coffers if Planned Parenthood could have helped back in 1925. What a war chest that would be, right? Margaret Sanger would be so proud.