Open Thread

Remember Valerie Plame? Well, after her 15 minutes were up, she seems to have gone down the road of anti-Semitism…which may now make her a prime Democrat House candidate.

People are making fun of AOC’s latest brainstorm: a non-profit banking system run through the US postal service. Don’t make fun of it. You must view AOC as a junior-league Lenin. A Stalin-wannabe. She’s a tyrant in the making. Given this, of course she’d want to get banking into government hands…and then make the dispensing of loans based upon political rather than financial calculations. The perfect Leftist system is where everything you do is controlled by government and you can only do things (ie, live) if you are approved by the government.

I’m kinda hoping the Cubs go another 108 years without a championship.

Bio-pic about Tolkien’s early life – looks pretty good; understandable complaint about them excising Tolkien’s vigorous Catholic faith…but, that’s just Hollywood playing to a mostly non-Catholic audience.

Don Surber points out that China is likely thinking at the moment they can outlast Trump…just wait until another Democrat or GOP squish gets in there. I think the Chinese will find they miscalculated.

40 thoughts on “Open Thread

  1. Retired Spook May 10, 2019 / 9:58 am

    A couple parts of Surber’s post caught my attention. The first had me laughing:

    I fully understand where Red China is coming from. The communists believe they can wait President Trump out and get a better deal from another rent-to-own Democrat president.

    and the second had me hoping:

    Karin McQuillan believes the Democrat Party is collapsing in a pile of identity politics and the hidden radicalism it promotes.

    She wrote, “Democrats’ decision to change the demographics of our country through open borders is alienating many Hispanic voters. The attendance figures for President Trump’s El Paso rally sent a shiver of fear through Democrats: 70 percent of rally attendees were Latino, 50 percent were Democrats. This month, the McLaughlin poll shows a 50 percent jump in Trump’s approval among Hispanics. (emphasis – mine)

  2. Retired Spook May 10, 2019 / 10:19 am

    After non-stop pummeling by the Democrats for nearly 28 straight months, Trump’s approval rating (RealClear Politics average) hits highest point since month one of that 28 months.

    That’s got to make Liberals’ heads explode.

    • Cluster May 10, 2019 / 11:51 am

      If the media was just slightly less partisan, Trump’s approval would be in the 60’s

      And I agree, the Democrats are in the process of political suicide. Their unhinged antics over Russia and their authoritarian obsession over Trump and his family is not playing well anymore. I think the average American of any political stripe is starting to sense that their antics are not American. This is not how this country behaves.

      • Cluster May 10, 2019 / 11:56 am

        Case in point, here is Adam Schiff:

        That really doesn’t necessarily change in an impeachment proceeding where they can fight us likewise but there is another remedy that I think we really need to consider that maybe even quicker than an impeachment proceeding or the court proceeding and that is reviving Congress’ inherent power of contempt, something we utilize up until the 1930s where we in effect do our own judicial proceeding in the Congress, have a little mini-trial in the Congress and hold people in contempt and responsible and compel their production without even going to court. Now, it used to be we imprisoned people but we could also fine them $25,000 a day until they comply or some other number. That may be an even swifter remedy if we need to embark on it and we may have to.

        Their authoritarian nature is getting the best of them and it will be their demise. America does not endlessly investigate political opponents – that’s what socialist countries do and to no ones surprise, this is what Democrats want America to be. An authoritarian socialist country where they are in charge.

      • Retired Spook May 10, 2019 / 3:59 pm

        If Trump and all those around him are going to ignore subpoenas from Schiff and Nadler, I’m guessing they’ll ignore fines too. I’d personally like to see the House Judiciary Committee or the House Intelligence Committee attempt to arrest the President of the United States. That might be a full case of popcorn entertainment.

      • Amazona May 12, 2019 / 10:56 am

        I have been in three prisons. Let me clarify that: I have been in three prison museums. One was Alcatraz and one was the old Wyoming Territorial Museum in Laramie. And most recently, the Stasi Prison in Berlin, Germany. (The Stasi were the German socialist secret police.)

        All were unpleasant, but the worst by far was the Stasi prison, partly because it included elements specific to torture and brutality—not just the incidental brutality that occurs in every prison due to the character flaws of some prison personnel, but official state-sanctioned torture—-but mostly because of the biggest difference between the German prison and the others I toured.

        That is, in the American prisons the people incarcerated were there because of what they had DONE, but in the Stasi prison they were there because of what they THOUGHT and BELIEVED.

        Now we are seeing a member of the United States Congress openly advocating for something similar to this, advocating bypassing the judicial system (which is not guaranteed to rule the “right” way) in favor of using a legislative body of the American government now controlled by his party to hold “a little mini-trial in the Congress “ with the hope of being able to “imprison” a sitting president—-because he has the wrong ideas. Because he is not one of their own. Because he represents the opposition, and in the truest sense of Leftist ideology it is OK to persecute, prosecute, have show trials of and imprison people who don’t think the right way.

        We are seeing this played out as more and more information comes out about the weaponization of federal agencies to harass, persecute, prosecute and imprison people for, when we get right down to it, supporting the “wrong” person.

        We need to remember that if Donald Trump had not been elected to the presidency this would have continued and no doubt expanded in both scope and power, putting more and more Americans at risk as the Leftist machinery of government grew. It is already proving to be difficult to rein in and reverse, thanks to the help of the always-complicit Agenda Media and the growing sense of power on the Left, but with a strong president who is pretty impervious to the public opinion war being fought by the Left and a new, energized DOJ, there is hope. Without a President Trump the excesses and abuses of Leftist governance would have continued to expand and the people would have been subjected to even more intrusive and abusive actions by the government.

      • Amazona May 12, 2019 / 10:58 am

        House Intelligence Committee—–the newest oxymoron

  3. Retired Spook May 10, 2019 / 4:35 pm

    • JeremiahTMM May 11, 2019 / 4:56 pm

      Hillary and Obama looks like collusion big time.

    • JeremiahTMM May 11, 2019 / 5:06 pm

      That one woman , Hillary, has done more damage to this country than any woman in this country, past , present, and future. Hillary is the personification of evil. She has a train car load of people who have died because of her. She raised money from selling uranium to Russia to fill her pockets with campaign money, and she paid to try and stop Trump. I’m sure George Soros is in on it. As are a number of people in Congress.

  4. Retired Spook May 11, 2019 / 5:19 pm

    Interesting article at the Washington Examiner about a new Georgetown University poll on civility.

    • JeremiahTMM May 11, 2019 / 7:45 pm

      I believe that for a fact. And I’d say it’s going to start in the near future. The Democrats are severely desperate to take Trump down. They’re voting to freeze the statute of limitations for Presidents, and concoct a phony reason to indict and impeach him.

      As many people as support the President I hope they rise in defense of freedom if the Democrats force an impeachment. If they don’t they’re something very wrong with them. If people don’t rise up they will be led like blind people into a lions den. Then it’s just a matter of having pity on the nation.

  5. Cluster May 12, 2019 / 8:45 am

    So the panelists on MSNBC are talking about John Kerry’s on going conversation with Iran and Trump’s comment that he is violating the Logan Act and should be prosecuted. In the irony of all ironies, the panelists are “outraged” that the President would use the nations law enforcement agencies against a political opponent. I kid you not. Their self awareness is abysmal and honestly they’re just not very smart people.

    • Retired Spook May 12, 2019 / 8:54 am

      honestly they’re just not very smart people.

      Kinda makes you wonder how they’ve gotten away with the scam for as long as they have.

      • Amazona May 12, 2019 / 9:07 am

        Kinda makes you wonder how they’ve gotten away with the scam for as long as they have.

        The only answer is that their supporters are also not very smart people.

        In the same vein, the other night I saw a few minutes of the show about Ted Kennedy and the murder at Chappaquiddick, and what struck me—other than the honesty of the part I saw, which surprised me—was the discussion of his scripted TV speech about the event. An older woman wearing one of those little plastic rain hats was interviewed about the speech, and she said it sounded like he was just reading it. She did not sound at all impressed by it. But when asked if she would still vote for him she unhesitatingly said “yes”.

        (Which leads me to wonder how many pundits moaned and groaned and lectured the people of Massachusetts about “abandoning their principles” when they continually voted Kennedy back into office. Probably about as many who made the same comments about those who voted for Clinton. Gee, it almost makes you think there is a double standard 😉 )

        At least now that the movie has come out a few more people will understand the comment about O’Rourke: Looks like Bobby, drives like Teddy.

  6. Amazona May 12, 2019 / 9:45 am

    Does anyone still doubt the Steele dossier was intended solely to discredit Trump and swing the election to Clinton? Or that the FISA warrant applications were part of that plan? Red State has a very interesting article:

    Referring to an October 2016 meeting between Christopher Steele and Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Kathleen Kavalec: emphasis mine

    In Kavalec’s written account of the meeting, which took place ten days before the FBI submitted their first FISA application, she wrote that Steele admitted his work was political and that “Steele’s client is keen to see this information come to light prior to November 8.” She also wrote “You may already have this information but wanted to pass it on just in case.” In her handwritten notes, Kavalec quoted Steele as saying he was “managing four priorities — Client needs, FBI, WashPo/NYT, source protection.” She understood the man and his agenda after only one brief meeting.

    If ever there were an admission that taints the FBI’s secret warrant to surveil Donald Trump’s campaign, it sat buried for more than 2 1/2 years in the files of a high-ranking State Department official.

    https://www.redstate.com/elizabeth-vaughn/2019/05/11/joe-digenova-doj-ig-concluded-final-three-fisa-extensions-illegally-obtained/

    From one of the links in the above article:

    Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Kathleen Kavalec’s written account of her Oct. 11, 2016, meeting with FBI informant Christopher Steele shows the Hillary Clinton campaign-funded British intelligence operative admitted that his research was political and facing an Election Day deadline.

    https://thehill.com/opinion/white-house/442592-steeles-stunning-pre-fisa-confession-informant-needed-to-air-trump-dirt

    If redacted information from the Mueller report has been made available to selected members of Congress, certainly the heavily redacted and retroactively classified reports to the FBI about Steele and his efforts and agenda should also be unredacted, at least for the perusal of a Congressional committee and DOJ investigation.

  7. Amazona May 12, 2019 / 10:36 am

    Judicial Watch announced today that it obtained 44 pages of records from the State Department through court-ordered discovery revealing that the Obama White House was tracking a December 2012 Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request seeking records concerning then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s use of an unsecure, non-government email system. Months after the Obama White House involvement, the State Department responded to the requestor, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), falsely stating that no such records existed.

    https://www.judicialwatch.org/press-room/press-releases/judicial-watch-records-obtained-in-court-ordered-discovery-reveal-obama-white-house-tracking-foia-request-for-clinton-emails/

    The new records obtained by Judicial Watch are further evidence revealing the Obama White House’s early knowledge of questions surrounding Clinton’s email use. In late April, Judicial Watch announced that E.W. (Bill) Priestap, assistant director of the FBI Counterintelligence Division, had admitted, in writing and under oath, that the agency found Clinton email records in the Obama White House, specifically, the Executive Office of the President.

    “These documents suggest the Obama White House knew about the Clinton email lies being told to the public at least as early as December 2012,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “A federal court granted Judicial Watch discovery into the Clinton emails because the court wanted answers about a government cover-up of the Clinton emails. And now we have answers because it looks like the Obama White House orchestrated the Clinton email cover-up.

    • Cluster May 12, 2019 / 11:02 am

      Obama definitely knew of Clinton’s private server and email account. And Obama was also made aware of Russia’s interference intentions back in 2014. He did nothing about either issue. And can it be construed that collusion was in the works when Obama told Medeved that he would have “more flexibility” after the 2012 election? What did he mean by that? I would think our “journalists” might have some interest in that considering how concerned they are of Russia.

  8. Cluster May 12, 2019 / 12:11 pm

    Could this be construed as “foreign interference in our elections”?

    A four-count indictment accuses the financier, Low Taek Jho, of transferring more than $21 million from overseas to the rapper Prakazrel Michel, known as Pras, from June 2012 through that November. Prosecutors contend that Mr. Michel then gave $865,000 of that money to a network of straw donors who used it to make campaign contributions to a candidate identified as Candidate A.

    While the indictment unsealed on Friday does not specifically name the candidate in question — who is accused of no wrongdoing — it clearly refers to former President Barack Obama.

    • Amazona May 12, 2019 / 7:28 pm

      I have read, in several places, that Russia put about $100,000 into financing the little it did to influence the election, which was all or nearly all having trolls post various comments on various social media sites. (Some of which were hostile to Trump.)

      We never knew how much money China funneled into the Clinton coffers but we do have some idea of how much money Russia spent to buy Hillary when she was Secretary of State.

      But now we are talking about more than $20 M going to Obama. It is not only illegal, I have to wonder how much of it ended up in an Obama bank account. And what is the role of Malaysia in all of this? Sounds like we need an independent counsel to look into this.

      • Cluster May 13, 2019 / 8:24 am

        This is just another big scandal swirling around Obama. His administration was as dirty as they come.

  9. JeremiahTMM May 12, 2019 / 5:46 pm

    Spook, have you been witness to any of this?

    • Retired Spook May 12, 2019 / 10:18 pm

      It’s news to me Jeremiah.

  10. Cluster May 13, 2019 / 8:31 am

    Going back to “they’re just not very smart people” … I present Carl Bernstien

    After claiming it was the press who were doing a great job and Congress who was failing because they weren’t holding impeachment investigations, Bernstein suggested: “there has been no real bipartisan investigation of the most authoritarian president in our history…” “Probably,” he added as an afterthought.

    Did you get that? There has been no “real” investigation of this “authoritarian” President. 4 investigations (Congress, Senate, FBI, and Special Counsel), and 2 and half years later, Bernstien says on national tv that there has been no “real” investigation.

    https://www.newsbusters.org/blogs/nb/nicholas-fondacaro/2019/05/12/bernstein-only-miracle-can-save-trump-criminal-prosecution

    On a related note:

    May 12 (Reuters) – A Connecticut man has been indicted after prosecutors say he threatened to kill U.S. President Donald Trump and sent others bomb threats and mail containing suspicious white powder, according to court documents.

    Coincidence? I don’t think so.

    • Amazona May 13, 2019 / 9:24 am

      What caught my eye was “most authoritarian”. I guess I missed that. Has he sent tens of thousands of Americans to camps? Has he imposed martial law? Has he brought back the draft? Has he sent federal agencies to spy on Americans? All I’ve seen is expansion of personal liberty for Americans.

      I mean, I can see how that would irritate a Lefty, but that seems like a poor choice of words

  11. Cluster May 13, 2019 / 8:57 am

    Let me be the first to say that we have to stop listening to scientists. These people are as political and as stupid as the rest of the Democrat mobs:

    Astrophysicist Martin Elvis of the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory in Massachusetts teamed up with King’s College London philosopher Tony Milligan to explore how quickly space mining might exhaust the solar system’s viable resources………After four centuries, we would have only 60 years to rein in the growth of the space economy before the solar system’s usable resources would be completely gone.Based on these findings, researchers are proposing that industrial exploitation of the solar system’s resources be capped at one-eighth — leaving the rest as protected, wilderness-status areas.

    We don’t even have the technology yet to mine space but when we do … these scientists are already warning us that we will ruin the universe and deplete it’s resources despite the fact that we still don’t know how large the universe is. It’s proactive doom. Democrats are good at it. I have to say that any intern and at an average dry cleaner has more common sense then scientists.

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-7022535/Protect-solar-gold-rush-preserving-88-star-scientists-urge.html

    • Amazona May 13, 2019 / 9:19 am

      One resource we will never run out of is that of hysteria. Evidently the “scientists” have decided they have mined hysteria about this planet as much as possible, so they are moving into the solar system.

      But, as we will all have to be living out there within the next 12 years anyway, we will have ample opportunity to explore, and new opportunities for the hysterics to express anguish and outrage about our failure to Save Our Solar System.

  12. Retired Spook May 13, 2019 / 10:02 am

    Public Discourse, the newsletter of the Witherspoon Institute that Amazona turned me on to a couple years ago has an interesting essay this morning that dovetails with many discussions we’ve had on this blog, the latest manifestation of which is Cluster’s comment above that we need to stop listening to “scientists.” (and no, for you Lefties reading this, I don’t mean abandoning science, just holding science accountable for telling the truth)

    In our day, the alleged personal liberation of the sexual revolution is becoming progressively socialized in institutions and norms. As a result, we have moved beyond the cultural condition in which scientific research into the related social behaviors (hormonal contraceptive use, premarital sex, abortion, homosexual relations, gender transformation) is deployed for political ends, into a state in which the process of deciding scientific truth has itself become irretrievably politicized. In this new situation, the end does not merely justify the means, it becomes the means. What advances the desired political agenda becomes the new criterion of truth. (emphasis – mine)

    — snip —

    Moreover, he shows, almost none of the studies claiming to find “no differences” actually does so. Most violate or ignore basic requirements of scientific evidence, such as using a random sample, not letting participants know the political implications of the study, and accounting for mothers’ desire to make their children look good (“social desirability bias,” in sociology-speak). Many of the politically correct studies that report “no differences” actually do find differences. These are often buried deep in their data tables or technical analysis, but they do not escape Schumm’s gimlet-eyed scrutiny.

    Schumm’s strategy for exposing the weaknesses of the “no differences” research is old-fashioned scholarship: he has simply read more studies, and digested their contents better, than most of the authors whose work he examines. The typical “no differences” review in this field includes about eighty studies. In this book, Schumm includes over 330 studies. The bibliography alone is over thirty pages. Not content to accept results reported by the authors, he reanalyzes the data distributions from the tables of reported statistics found in most studies, to verify—or undermine—the claimed findings of a study. The results are compelling.

    Read the whole thing. Plug the terms “global warming” or “climate change” in place of “children of same sex couples,” and it still makes sense. It all goes back to Eisenhower’s warning in his farewell address about the technological elite that I referenced the other day.

    • Cluster May 13, 2019 / 10:20 am

      Eisenhower’s warning in his farewell address about the technological elite that I referenced the other day.

      Indeed and we are in the throes of that warning now. I have never seen more scientists willingly abandon science …. consensus is not, and has never been actual science.

      • Retired Spook May 13, 2019 / 11:21 am

        I’m reminded of this from a Michael Crichton lecture at Cal Tech from nearly 2 decades ago:

        […] 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.

        A couple weeks ago I was going to embark on a “quote of the day,” which I abruptly forgot after the first one. Consider this a continuation of that effort.

  13. Cluster May 13, 2019 / 12:47 pm

    LMAO – the latest from Bernie Sanders

    Banks make record profits discriminating against people of color and denying basic banking services to 63 million adults who are unbanked or underbanked.

    I am feeling a little “underbanked” today.

    • Retired Spook May 13, 2019 / 12:58 pm

      Just about the time you think they can’t get any nuttier, they do. They’re in the process of setting the intellectual honesty bar so low it will take a team of archaeologists to find it.

      • Amazona May 13, 2019 / 11:27 pm

        How about Corey Booker’s quote: “Abortion is health”

        Well, no, abortion is death. But in the Orwellian world of the Left………

  14. Cluster May 13, 2019 / 7:00 pm
  15. Cluster May 14, 2019 / 8:38 am

    And it begins:

    Attorney General William Barr has appointed a U.S. attorney to examine the origins of the Russia investigation and determine if intelligence collection involving the Trump campaign was ‘lawful and appropriate,’ a person familiar with the matter told The Associated Press on Monday. Barr appointed John Durham, the U.S. attorney in Connecticut, to conduct the inquiry, the person said. Durham’s appointment comes about a month after Barr told members of Congress he believed ‘spying did occur’ on the Trump campaign in 2016.

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7025815/Prosecutor-examine-Russia-probe-origins.html

  16. Cluster May 14, 2019 / 11:37 am

    Hard to argue with logic like this from AOC:

    “It was reported today that this weekend for the first time in human history we have reached atmospheric levels of carbon at 415 parts per million. This has never been seen in recorded human history. In fact meteorologist Eric Holthaus and journalist said simply about this measurement, ‘We do not know a planet like this.’ The last time our planet hit 415 we were in the Pliocene period. Oceans were 90 feet higher. Bacteria and diseases we have never seen before roamed the Earth. Humans did not exist. We have never seen a planet like this. And a planet like this is exactly what we are going to get, and it is exactly what we are going to inherit from previous generations if we do not act positively now.”

    • Retired Spook May 14, 2019 / 12:08 pm

      In fact meteorologist Eric Holthaus and journalist

      LOL! Now there’s an interesting double major. My guess is he’s not top tier in either field.

      The last time our planet hit 415 we were in the Pliocene period. Oceans were 90 feet higher.

      But now they are not 90 feet higher, so you have to ask if there’s any correlation.

      Bacteria and diseases we have never seen before roamed the Earth.

      Rings a little hollow. Migrants from Central and South America are bringing diseases that have been eradicated for years in this country, and the Dems are not only not concerned, they are actually encouraging it.

      Humans did not exist.

      But now we do. Again — correlation?

      and it is exactly what we are going to inherit from previous generations

      Yeah, I’m sure you would rather have inherited a civilization that did not use fossil fuels and invent the internal combustion engine. (think permanently stuck in the late 1800’s.)

      • Cluster May 14, 2019 / 12:11 pm

        She has so much garbage floating around in her head, she has difficulty making sense of things.

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