Open Thread

My view on the GOP Primary is: I will support the nominee. I will not engage in nasty fights with fellow GOPers or GOP-leaning voters.

With RDS now officially in, the shape of the race is clear; it is mostly Trump vs DeSantis with Trump enjoying a huge amount of loyal Trumpster support while RDS is looking for a way to draw some of that vote over to himself. The rest of the pack is probably kidding itself about getting the nomination and, on balance, they probably help Trump by splitting up the anti-Trump vote. Of course, some of these also-rans likely won’t make it to January…the money battle is important right now. Not for Trump and RDS who functionally have unlimited amounts, but for the rest…any of them who want to be around past South Carolina had better come up with some hefty bucks. Those who can’t will likely bow out before the Iowa caucuses.

Do keep in mind that the Democrats are very likely paying for GOP division. We have seen over and over again how relative peanuts will get people to alter their views. It would cost only, say, $100,000 to get a prominent Trumpster pundit to start going “only Trump” as a means of keeping Trumpsters home if Trump doesn’t get the nomination. It wouldn’t cost any more to pay a DeSantis pundit to start going “only DeSantis” for the same reason. The Democrats very much need a divided and weakened GOP for 2024 because that is the only way they drag Biden’s senile carcass into a second term.

As I’ve said for a while, I’m not at all confident of GOP victory in 2024 – because of those divisions being diligently fostered. But I have had a little bit of a mental shift; there is a chance. What I see is that Biden – who has never been loved – is losing what popularity he had. Inflation continues to bite as does overall economic anxiety. We’re already in a recession which is being hidden by number juggling. And now the Culture War has taken an interesting turn. From Biden on down, they are all-in on the transgender thing especially for kids…but outside a few lunatic Blue enclaves, parents are rejecting this. What we might have is a perfect storm brewing where Democrats are set to become unpopular both on economics and social issues…hammering on abortion just barely scraped them by in 2022…that issue is a lot less salient for 2024 while other social issues are coming to the forefront. It could be a very interesting year.

CNN Headline: “Minorities, immigrants and now members of the LGBTQ community are being warned of the risks of visiting Florida after the nation’s largest LGBTQ advocacy group issued a travel advisory following newly passed laws and policies”

Reminder: this lie is not pitched at you. They don’t care about you. They know you’ll never vote Democrat. This lie is for Democrats. And it doesn’t require them to actually believe there’s tyranny in Florida…but what it does tell them is that this is what they have to say is happening in Florida. This is to keep the conversation within the Party Line. That is, to keep them voting Democrat no matter how bad it gets.

33 thoughts on “Open Thread

  1. Retired Spook May 25, 2023 / 4:44 pm

    The first debate is going to be interesting when they ask the obvious question, “will you support the eventual GOP candidate if it’s not you?” I picture RDS having no problem saying yes to that question. I don’t have as much confidence in Trump’s answer. Like Mark, I will vote for the GOP candidate no matter who it is.

  2. jdge1 May 26, 2023 / 12:00 am

    Property Rights Score Huge Win as SCOTUS Strikes Down Biden’s EPA Land Grab

    This is a considerable win for land owners and a big slap down for overreach of unelected government officials.

  3. Cluster May 26, 2023 / 9:10 am

    I too will vote for whoever the nominee is, but admittedly will have to hold my nose if it’s Haley or maybe even Tim Scott. I don’t an establishment candidate, and because of that, I need to hear a couple things from RDS:

    1. Will he end our commitment to Ukraine? This war is nothing but a money laundering operation and to shield the Biden’s illegal activity … including other American politicians. Ukraine is easily one of the most corrupt countries in the world, and is not a functioning democracy by any stretch of the imagination, so there is no other reason why we are there. Ron needs to tell me that he will end this Democrat war.

    2. Will he purge the DOJ? The FBI leadership is completely corrupt and the first action of any new President will have to be to fire Wray and all other top brass and rehire and refocus.

    3. Will he pardon J6 defendants and investigate Adam Schiff, Gerry Nadler, and Nancy Pelosi for their roles in manufacturing lies surrounding that event?

    Ron has a lot of establishment support, which is understandable considering the other guy is the Orange Guy and you know how offensive he is, lol, but my worry is that Ron will bow to the money and pressure from the establishment. Who gave him all that money, and what do they want?

    • Amazona May 26, 2023 / 10:22 am

      re: DeSantis donations and the $8.2 million donate after what the Left (and Trump) tried so desperately to paint as a “disastrous” introduction as a candidate.

      It’s also important to remember that campaign donations are capped at a fairly low amount, unlike donations to Super PACs where big-time donors like to send their money. That means that almost all of that $8.2 million would have to have come from normal, small-dollar donors around the country. There’s no way to spin that other than being impressive.

    • Amazona May 26, 2023 / 10:45 am

      You wonder if DeSantis will pardon J6 defendants and investigate Adam Schiff, Gerry Nadler, and Nancy Pelosi for their roles in manufacturing lies surrounding that event?

      It looks like he’s taken a pretty strong stand on that.

      Newly declared GOP presidential candidate and current governor of Florida Ron DeSantis appeared on the “The Clay Travis & Buck Sexton Show” Thursday and vowed that if elected, he would immediately tackle the problem of the political weaponization of the Department of Justice.

      As we’ve reported extensively here at RedState, Merrick Garland’s DOJ has turned the department into an attack machine for the Biden administration which metes out punishment depending on which side of the aisle you’re on. They’ve basically eschewed ethics and the rule of law altogether.

      DeSantis vowed to push back on the first day of his administration and to aggressively use the power of the pardon that would be bestowed upon him by the Constitution.

      • jdge1 May 26, 2023 / 12:57 pm

        As we’ve reported extensively here at RedState, Merrick Garland’s DOJ has turned the department into an attack machine for the Biden administration which metes out punishment depending on which side of the aisle you’re on.

        Which was no different with Obama’s and Eric Holder. The two of them conspired in so many facets of organized crime. Fast & Furious is just one example. Bidum makes that look like child’s play with the military aid he’s sending to Ukraine and what he left behind in Afghanistan.

    • Amazona May 26, 2023 / 8:14 pm

      We’d better get our act together and get some final ruling on Natural Born Citizen or voting for Haley would be voting for someone who is not even eligible for the position.

      • Retired Spook May 27, 2023 / 9:55 am

        You can bet that if Nikki Haley were to be elected President, the Democrats would suddenly find a compelling interest in challenging the Natural Born Citizen requirement.

      • Amazona May 27, 2023 / 11:12 am

        Exactly. Yet the Right insists on creating situations to trap us later. So much of it is due to that starry-eyed fanboi mentality—-as soon as someone says or does something appealing, there is a groundswell of “He (or she) should be our next president!”

        This swooning over every Shiny New Thing is not helpful. And no, not everyone who has a lot to offer to the Conservative Movement is qualified to be President of the United States. Ramaswamy is bright and has good ideas, but that’s not enough to qualify him for the presidency, even if he had been born to citizen parents and was, therefore, eligible for the job.

        We need to get over the swoony Fan Club Identity Politics mentality and develop a keener understanding of what it takes to be an effective president, or—at this stage—what it takes for that person to be an effective candidate.

  4. Cluster May 26, 2023 / 9:18 am

    This is heart warming …

    How Awkward! First Lady Jill Biden is left begging for applause after line in speech falls flat with Washington DC crowd

    What did she say, one might ask? Well here it is …

    ‘I’ve visited red states and blue states and I’ve found that the common values that unite us are deeper than our divisions,

    And NO ONE clapped. Thankfully. Like me, I think most Americans are f***ing done with politicians platitudes and empty rhetoric. How many times this election season will we hear “the rich need to pay their fair share”? Then ask yourself, how many times over the last couple decades have you heard the same thing? It’s an absolutely meaningless phrase designed to fire up the losers, of which there are many. And all Democrats have are empty platitudes, and for that matter, so do establishment Republicans. When was the last time you heard Lindsay Graham say anything of substance??

    America has some serious problems, and we need some serious people.

    • Amazona May 26, 2023 / 10:41 am

      The Dems seem to think that after years of them, and especially of Cadaver Joe, telling the nation that conservatives are not just morally corrupt and essentially evil but are domestic terrorists and pose an existential threat to democracy, sending out the remarkably charmless fake “Doctor” Jill to murmur an empty platitude would fix that.

  5. jdge1 May 26, 2023 / 9:45 am

    Senate Democrats introduce bill to give federal government massive power over online platforms

    Well, this sure doesn’t reek of an opportunity for the left to seize massive control over the last vestige of free speech for the general public able to reach the masses (/sarc). They want to control “disinformation”. Would be hilarious if they weren’t masters of disinfo. And then they want “penalizing power”, code word – punish (crush) any opposition. Thank goodness they don’t currently have control of the congress, but you can be sure this will stay on their radar until they do.

    Bennet’s Digital Platform Commission Act would create a new five-person body of commissioners nominated by the president and confirmed by the Senate, backed by an 18-member Code Council of “experts” in various subjects including “disinformation.” The commission would have broad rulemaking, investigative, and penalizing power, ostensibly in the name of promoting public safety, access to government services, business competition and consumer protection, protection of digital infrastructure, prevention of “deceptive, unfair, unjust, unreasonable, or abusive practices,” algorithm fairness and transparency, and ensuring a “robust and competitive marketplace of ideas with a diversity of views at the local, State, and national levels.”

    • Amazona May 26, 2023 / 10:38 am

      This is a bold effort to codify Wrongthink and officially criminalize it. They have already tried to criminalize freedom of expression and association in other ways, such as the J6 efforts when they deposed people and grilled them on their opinions, and tried to make the case that the opinions of Trump regarding the election were crimes.

  6. Cluster May 26, 2023 / 9:53 am

    Such a good article, and something we have discussed here quite a bit

    “Authoritarianism can be found on both sides of the political spectrum,” Krispenz and Bertrams said. “Indicators of authoritarianism on the political left are anticonventionalism (i.e., the absolute endorsement of progressive moral values), top-down censorship (i.e., the preference for the use of governmental and institutional authority to suppress any speech that is considered as offensive and intolerant), and antihierarchical aggression (i.e., the motivation to use force and aggression to overthrow established hierarchies).”

    “For example, an individual high in LWA might declare anyone to be ‘old fashioned’ who is opposing their own ‘progressive values,’ strive to suppress free speech to regulate the expression of right-wing beliefs in educational institutions, and even endorse the use of violence to reach their own political goals.”

  7. Amazona May 26, 2023 / 10:36 am

    I’ve been saying for a long time that Trump’s handling of Covid, particularly his bragging about being responsible for the “vaccines”, will turn out to be his Achilles heel. Not following the advice of the CDC in the beginning, but failing to get other opinions and most of all looking at hopes of prevention rather than means of treatment.

    DeSantis may have just fired the first shot in that war, an introduction into the idea that letting Fauci run things was foolish and damaging to the country.

    I think he did great for three years, but when he turned the country over to Fauci in March of 2020, that destroyed millions of people’s lives.

    • Cluster May 26, 2023 / 11:31 am

      … but when he turned the country over to Fauci in March of 2020, that destroyed millions of people’s lives.

      I don’t disagree with that, and I did hear Ron speak to the J6 persecutions, but my number 1 concern is Ukraine and I don’t know where Ron is with that. IMHO, the Military Industrial Complex is Americas biggest threat, followed closely by Big Pharma, then the Corrupted Deep State. These are powerful and corrupted entities that need to be challenged and dismantled.

      • jdge1 May 26, 2023 / 1:41 pm

        …but my number 1 concern is Ukraine…

        My number one concern is the same I had for Trump during his first nomination, draining the swamp and dismantling the weaponization of government. Only then can you deal with the international issues we face. While Trump did make some inroads toward this effort, it wasn’t nearly enough. While I understand, much of it takes a joined effort with congress and the president, there were many areas that could have been addressed that were not. I think one of Trump’s initial failures during the earlier part of his presidency was attempting to “work together” with the left. I believe he now knows what a BIG mistake that was and won’t likely repeat it.

        Both DeSantis and Trump have shown enough to see they both have the smarts & willingness to deal with the problems we face and attack it beyond pre-election platitudes. They each have areas where they excel and areas where they will need to rely on others to be highly effective, as the complexity of running the country is greater than most realize. This means putting competent, trusting people in the right positions. Based on his previous trip to the Whitehouse, this is still a concern I have for Trump where several in his administration were in & out, not only not doing a good job, but actually going in the wrong direction. I think part of that was due to the fact that he wasn’t a politician with insider knowledge and experience, something that many people were actually excited about because that indicated he was less beholden to political shenanigans. But it still created issues for him.

        Trump has a tendency to shoot himself in the foot, in part because his ego is so big it doesn’t allow him the necessity to accept responsibility for wrong decisions. His handling of covid and the jab being one. And this is quite significant as he still seems to hold the jab is a good thing. I’m guessing partly because he still wants a pat on the back for his part in rolling it out so quickly. But in light of its devastation, for which there are a significant number of continued and mounting problems, the last thing I need is for him to suggest it was / is a good thing. It makes me concerned that he will still allow it to be administered, when the program should be shut down and a multitude or people prosecuted for their part in this atrocity

      • Amazona May 26, 2023 / 7:48 pm

        Great post on all levels.

        My sense of why Trump didn’t go full-bore on attacking the Bureaucratic State was that he was thinking of the upcoming election and that he had to tone down his approach a little till after the election.

        I’ve said many times here that if Trump would just buy an hour of prime time and make a speech in which he took responsibility for initiating the vaccine effort and for believing what he was told, but that he was wrong and in retrospect it was a mistake, he would accomplish the double win of savaging Biden for his vaxx promotions–on all fronts, from promoting it to protecting the drug companies to the dictatorial edicts forcing people to bend the knee or lose their jobs to the refusal to admit the damages—as well as defanging the claim that his ego keeps him from ever admitting to a mistake.

        That one act would have opened a door to a devastating anti-Biden campaign, with increasing evidence of vaxx damages ignored by the administration to the example of the dictatorship attitude of Biden (and all Leftists) to the appearance of corruption in the billions of dollars funneled to the drug companies. It would have created a huge framework of campaign material that the Biden group simply could not deny or overcome.

        Every time he preens about his promotion of the drug I see him setting himself up for the damage he could have and should have been inflicting on Biden. Now he is just handing that entire argument to DeSantis, with the added danger to him of being as big a target as Biden.

      • Amazona May 26, 2023 / 8:08 pm

        The worst and most dangerous federal agency is the IRS. Pass legislation replacing the income tax with a consumption tax and the IRS is defanged. With a Fair Tax, you pay an additional 17% on everything you buy except food and medicine and used goods—on new goods and services. The tax is collected at point of sale.

        This puts control of finances in the hands of the taxpayer. Want to buy a new car or house? You have control, so you can simply not buy taxable items or services until you have saved enough money to do what you want to do. That new car will cost you more up front, but as a used car will have greater value because there will be no tax on it for the buyer.

        This would gut the IRS, making it just in charge of making sure businesses charge the tax. Any IRS employees whose jobs are cut can be shifted to Immigration to work on the inexcusable backlog of immigration applications. The IRS costs us billions of dollars a year and is our version of the Gestapo, able to act without due process and proven to be used as a weapon against political opposition.

        The only danger would be in writing a bill that has enough wiggle room in it for a greedy Congress to add an income tax to a consumption tax. It would have to be clearly stated that it is a replacement, not an addition.

      • Amazona May 26, 2023 / 7:50 pm

        Ukraine will be an easy fix. Just stop sending money. We don’t have American troops there, and we can provide a little military aid in the form of some equipment to show compassion for the Ukrainians without propping up Russia.

        The best thing we can do for Ukraine without being involved is jump start our petroleum industry and cut off Russia’s biggest source of revenue.

      • Amazona May 26, 2023 / 7:54 pm

        Trump was doing a good job on the Deep State, merely by slashing budgets and relocating offices. Look at the career bureaucrats who had hissy fits and refused to move to Colorado or Missouri. Cut off the funding and let the staffing limit itself as people refuse to leave the Beltway and a large proportion of the Deep State problem will be resolved. Then we just need some muscular legislation regarding the requirement for rules and regulations to be part of the legislative process and the ability to fire federal employees and the Deep State will be impotent.

    • Retired Spook May 26, 2023 / 12:01 pm

      In other news, a flock of pigs was seen flying over the nation’s Capitol. Maybe CNN is just trying to get out ahead of bad news. Nah!! It’s CNN

  8. Amazona May 26, 2023 / 9:37 pm

    For the last, oh, I don’t know… forever… ranchers and farmers large and small have taken care of their livestock with antibiotics and antimicrobials that were available at farm stores. These medicines treat common illnesses and infections that people who own large animals and livestock are very familiar with and qualified to treat.

    But now he unelected, unaccountable, faceless, nameless, power-hungry monarchs at the FDA have decided that none of our farmers, ranchers, or hobbyists will be allowed to have those medicines anymore without visiting the vet for a prescription. This will cost the farmers tens of thousands of dollars a year in added vet bills, which they will then pass onto the consumer, forcing prices even higher during a time of record inflation.

    There was no debate in Congress, no federal law passed, no chance for a town hall or public debate, no reading of a bill, no commercials warning the public so they could stop this encroachment on liberty and sanity. We have been informed by federal decree that this is now our new reality.

    This starts in June of this year. Some have suggested that this is a move to keep people from buying Ivermectin, which has been shown in studies to improve COVID symptoms. It doesn’t matter why they did it; the bigger problem is that no federal agency should be able to institute any sweeping federal mandate without input from the people it affects. Or even more so by the legislature, which is the only legal source of laws. This is tyranny.

    But perhaps worse than this shocking display of federal f*ckery through the executive branch exercising immense power it should not have is the fact that our representatives are shocked and confused at how this happened. Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.) replied to a tweet discussing this new rule claiming ignorance. “I mean no slight to you by my reply, but I don’t recall voting on this recently. Was this done at the state level? Too many rules are implemented by agencies these days.

    Well, DUH! Rep. Massie, or should we say Rep. Obvious. “Too many rules are implemented by agencies these days” is basically the definition of the Deep State, or the Bureaucratic State.

    There is the speculation that this might have been prompted by the sheer effrontery of some people to use ivermectin—a drug not only developed for use in humans but the recipient of a Nobel Prize for its use by humans—after the State told us not to. So they just flex their federal muscles, have some unelected political appointees create a “regulation” and—problem solved. The masses are brought to heel.

    • Amazona May 26, 2023 / 9:42 pm

      Not many chicken vets out there, folks. Trust me. I tried to find one.

    • Amazona May 27, 2023 / 9:03 am

      And now, speaking of flexing federal muscles, we have the newest BLM overreach.

      Those offering testimony in Washington D.C. with regard to a proposed Bureau of Land Management rule expressed major concern that the Biden administration’s burdensome regulations on public lands, including the highly controversial proposed rule entitled “Conservation and Landscape Health” would lack congressional oversight.

      The big picture Todd Devlin said he aimed to paint for members of the U.S. House Committee on Natural Resources Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations during the May 24 hearing titled, “Examining the Biden Administration’s Efforts to Limit Access to Public Lands” was the conservation rule must have cooperative agency status, it must go through the full-blown EIS, and it must be an amendment to the Resource Management Plan. This would be the only time in history that the Federal Land Policy Management Act (FLPMA) would be rewritten without congressional action.
      Devlin said the rule will mandate the BLM manage for preservation rather than meet their multiple use mandate.

      FLPMA mandates that ACECs (Areas of Critical Environmental Concern ) can only be designated when a resource management plan (RMP) is finalized. The proposed rule, however, would grant the BLM the authority to manage proposed lands of unlimited acreage as ACECs without the requirement of an updated RMP. This gives the BLM a new ability to create de facto Wilderness Study Areas of any size without the input of state and county governments by side-stepping the RMP establishment or revision process mandated by FLPMA.

      This is reminiscent of prior moves to create “Wilderness Areas” and roadless areas on federal lands, which is basically a way to prevent the use of these lands. There was a big move to create roadless areas in Forest Service lands and to prohibit forestry, which are both violations of the reasons the FS was created. Harriet Hageman schooled me on this, as she used to fight the feds on these efforts. The FS was created specifically to provide an ongoing source of lumber for the nation, to protect the watersheds, and to provide a source of recreation. Prohibiting forestry and restricting access by banning all roads are violations of the charter and intent of the Service, which is administered by the Department of Agriculture because of its nature.

      There is a steady, insistent move by the Bureaucratic State to assume control of the entire nation, and unlegislated edicts by federal agencies are part of this effort.

      THIS is the Deep State

    • Amazona May 27, 2023 / 1:30 pm

      While I can accept the theory that Covid was a bioweapon, what I don’t understand is what was its target demographic. It’s hard to understand how or why a bioweapon would be purposely released which has no protections for those responsible, but which will target entire populations indiscriminately.

      And a slow-release bioweapon, such as one that causes cancers, is harder to understand when looking for a motive. Was it just an experiment, a “Gee, I wonder if it would be possible to create something that does ‘this’ ” that just got loose into the world? Or was it a strategy, that some entity would benefit by the fairly gradual reduction in population by a means that might appear to be natural (cancer) and not a weapon of war?

      I keep coming back to “qui bono?” Who benefits? And how? So far, to me, that is the biggest missing puzzle piece.

      I’ve been thinking that cancers represent one aspect of Unintended Consequences of a recklessly rapid and poorly thought-out effort to find a vaccine for Covid. Seeing that there are three possible oncogenic mechanisms baked into this man-made virus raises all sorts of questions. [Whoever designed the virus — nature, Chinese bioweapons engineers, or Fauci and that guy from North Carolina — TRIPLED the ways that covid could encourage cancer cells to grow and flourish in the body.]

  9. Amazona May 27, 2023 / 4:17 pm

    • Retired Spook May 27, 2023 / 5:08 pm

      The super PAC claimed that DeSantis supported a 23 percent tax increase on purchases. However, this is a somewhat disingenuous claim because the sales tax would have eliminated all other federal taxes, including the income tax if enacted. DeSantis co-sponsored the Fair Tax Act (HR 25) in Congress multiple times, which aimed to reduce the overall tax burden and eliminate the IRS.


      • Amazona May 27, 2023 / 5:31 pm

        And I’ve heard recommendations as low as 17% as a consumption tax.

        Which Super PAC was spreading this lie? It tells you a lot when you realize that the only negative about a candidate is either a lie or that he once ate some pudding with his fingers.

        If I had known DeSantis had sponsored a Fair Tax bill I would have been in his camp a lot sooner.

      • Retired Spook May 27, 2023 / 5:43 pm

        Me too. Our old Tea Party group that started back in 2010 is still active, first Tuesday of every month. It’s evolved into a community action group, and we still pull in anywhere from a dozen to as many as 50 attendees, depending on the topic of the presentation. Tuesday, June 6th is a presentation on the Fair Tax.

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