Open Thread

Maddow has lived on Trump-Russia for two years. Not doing so well, now:

MSNBC host Rachel Maddow lost half-a-million viewers in just one week after special counsel Robert Mueller’s report indicated that he did not find enough evidence to support collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.

Maddow has been one of the most prominent voices on the collusion conspiracy, spending most of her programs over the past two years on allegations that President Donald Trump coordinated with the Russian government to win the 2016 presidential election…

We’ll see how it plays out – but I think a lot of people who aren’t committed Democrats were going along with this MSM Narrative simply because, until just now, their faith in the MSM remained mostly unshaken. But I wonder if this is the start of a complete break-down…where people in large numbers simply stop believing the MSM? This plus things like the Smollett case might make for a vastly different electorate in 2020 as opposed to 2016. Back then, almost everyone had their doubts about Trump…but come 2020, those doubts might be long gone, and that means Trump will get voted on based on how people think things are going.

RSM has more on this.

Meanwhile, Don Surber takes an early look at Trump’s 2020 strategy.

Excellent article about the history of America’s various two-party systems – but I think that while correct in saying we’re in a re-alignment phase, it doesn’t acknowledge just what one side wants: a complete revocation of everything that came before. Call it what you will – “the left” is just a bit of shorthand – the people compromising the real movers of the Democrat party despise the United States and the civilization it sprang from. They want it all gone and a completely new thing fashioned in its place. This is why I say that our current fight is for all the marbles. This isn’t FDR routing the remains of the Gilded Age GOP…this is a conflict between antithetical forces and one or the other will be eliminated.

The New York Times is upset that Poland is ok with admitting Christian immigrants but not so keen on non-Christians. My view: better that your immigrants have at least some familiarity with your national culture. Also my view: Christians are the most oppressed people in the world and should be first in line for all refugee claims in the West. Also my view: we should increase immigration from sub-Saharan Africa because that will inject some very devout Christians into the United States and will just really annoy the heck out of liberals.

A Two-Tiered Justice System Means a Bloody Revolution

It isn’t just things like Smollett (a pathetic, small figure) getting off – it is much larger than that: (HT: Ace of Spades)

A former Senate aide charged with doxxing Republican senators and extorting a witness reached a plea deal with federal prosecutors in Washington after his wealthy and well-connected family brought in experts to talk about his mental health and the private supervision they could provide him.

A judge signaled that Jackson Cosko had allegedly taken large quantities of sensitive information from the Senate, but banned media from hearing the details. A hearing had been scheduled for Thursday, but on Tuesday, the court canceled it and indicated that a deal had been struck behind the scenes. A plea agreement hearing, where the deal is to be officially signed, was set for April 5.

During Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s September 2018 confirmation hearing, Cosko — a former IT aide who once managed Democratic New Hampshire Sen. Maggie Hassan’s office computer accounts — allegedly posted to Wikipedia the home addresses of Republican senators who supported the Supreme Court justice.

Don’t try this at home, folks: you aren’t part of a wealthy and well-connected family and if you tried this, you’d be looking at many years in jail. It is only the Ruling Class which can get away with this – especially the liberal Democrat part of it (Republicans can’t skate quite as brazenly). And do realize this is Trump’s Justice Department which is allowing this vile person to get off with less than a wrist-slap. Which means that plenty of people at Justice don’t give a damn about Trump – they’re going to protect their buddies in the Ruling Class, come what may.

People will put up with a lot – as the Founders noted, people are disposed to suffer ills as long as they can. But what people find unendurable is a clear manifestation of injustice. If the regular folks feel that everyone is in the same boat, then a lot of things are allowed to slide. But if they start to perceive that some are in an entirely different boat and the rules don’t apply to them, then we get into a situation where the problem has to be rapidly corrected, or people will simply go outside the law to obtain justice…and that path leads to revolution.

I don’t think these idiots – and they are, truly, idiots – realize where this leads. Mommny and Daddy – clearly stupid people who don’t know anything about raising kids – are trying to protect their precious Jackson from the consequences of his evil deeds. But when regular folks see more and more cases where the connected get off, then what will happen to Mommy and Daddy’s precious, little child is that he’ll be strung up from a lamp post…right next to Mommy and Daddy. If they had the sense that God gave little, white mice they’d have let their kid go to jail for a while, because he deserved it. But that isn’t how corrupt and stupid Ruling Classes operate.

I hope Trump gets on this – and if I were him, I’d insist that no plea deal be entered without his sign off. Clearly, the Deep State is going on as if Trump means nothing: that he’ll be gone one day and it’ll all be back to normal. But Trump has a chance to nip this and establish justice and thus ensure domestic tranquility. If the opportunity is missed, then eventually people are going to get killed over things like this.

The Flynn Injustice

Somewhere during the travesty which was the Flynn hearing today, something broke inside me. I’ve now had a real change in how I’m looking at things – and I think some very hard times are coming for our country. In fact, our country may not survive the times that our coming.

A lot can be said about Flynn and what he did or may have done – but the struck me is that even if he’s guilty not just of a crime, but of intending to do wrong (there is a difference), there are probably a thousand other people infesting DC who are worse. Our nation is the most powerful nation, ever. And as the most powerful nation, every other nation on Earth, great or small, has a vested interest in moving US policy in a manner favorable to themselves. The only thing that stops a nation from trying to influence the United States is lack of cash. It probably is true that the Democratic Republic of the Congo (population, 84 million) would like to have as much pull in DC as, say, Saudi Arabia (population, 33 million), but the pragmatic facts of life are that Saudi has cash, Congo doesn’t. And, so, we’re always talking about Saudi Arabia while most Americans are probably unaware of the existence of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. And, for all we know, the Congo might have more useful stuff, and a more friendly-to-us population, than Saudi does. But, money talks…everything else walks. There are buckets of Americans – right and left – who are influenced by this foreign cash. But Flynn isn’t being punished for taking the foreign cash – the taking of the foreign cash is being used against Flynn because he picked the wrong guy to support for President.

Leaving aside, for the moment, the proof this provides of our two-tiered justice system, just how much of the foreign cash flowing through DC do you think might want to hamper or remove Trump? After all, there’s only one way that foreign cash can actually work to shape US policy: if that policy is not strictly America First. You won’t find foreign cash lobbying DC to protect American industries; you won’t find foreign cash lobbying for an American defense build up; you won’t find foreign cash, per se, lobbying to have American forces withdrawn from foreign countries (it does lobby to have Americans forces withdrawn from, or sent to, particular foreign countries in service of foreign policy desires); foreign cash certainly won’t lobby DC for a border wall, nor a reduction in immigration to the United States. Foreign cash is all for making the United States carry out the wishes of foreign powers – and it stands to reason that, outside Israel and a couple other places, no one is interested in having an American President who tells everyone to pound sand and looks after strictly American interests.

It is a huge amount of money – to take it out of today’s partisan atmosphere, this report from 2014 indicates that in 2013, the United Arab Emirates spent $14.2 million dollars influencing American policy. And, remember, this is what is reported because it has to be: when you are directly lobbying for a foreign power, you have to report it. But, if you’re not, you don’t. Money flows very easily through all cracks in the law. And $14.2 million doesn’t sound like a lot – but it is only one country, and if someone had just a million to spare for 2019, The Weekly Standard would have stayed in business. Just as there is more than one way to skin a cat, so there’s more than one way to spread cash around to people you want to control. You can give them speaking fees. Sinecure jobs. Help market things like books. On and on and on it can go…and no one really pays attention, but at the end of the day a large number of people with influence are pushing policies which may only incidentally be in our favor, but are definitely desired by foreign powers.

All of this came into my head in a flash as I watched Twitter reactions to the Flynn hearing – and a rage boiled inside me. My nation is bought and sold and those who are pledged to Justice are perverting the very concept in order to punish those who picked Trump. Which means, of course, that if they ever feel the need to direct that power against me, they will. And their pious intonations of patriotism while they are doing this nauseating hit job just made me even madder. The people going after Flynn – or delighting in his destruction – are, for the most part, not made up of people who deployed for six months to the Persian Gulf; nor hiked through the mountains of Afghanistan wearing our uniform; nor are they people who work our farms and ranches; they don’t man our factories; they don’t fix leaking pipes or drive trucks…they are just money-grubbers on the make. Their money tells them that Trump is a threat (their money is right about that) and so they go after the target picked by the money. They don’t give a sh** about what happens to America – all they want is their pay.

And how do we get rid of them? I had hoped that Trump would, indeed, drain the swamp…but can it be drained? For it to be drained, quite a large number of people (and at least 35% of them GOPers, by my guess) would have to go to jail. Who is going to prosecute them? And even if you found a prosecutor willing to do it, how are you going to get a jury in DC – where almost everyone who isn’t already on the take, wants to be – to convict? Trump can pardon Flynn (I hope he does, and soon) – and he can also pardon everyone associated with his campaign. But that doesn’t get rid of the crooks. And, meanwhile, at the State level (especially in New York) Democrats under the cloak of office are determined to use State law to punish Trump people in a way that Trump can’t stop. What are we to do? Roll over for them?

Thanks to Ryan’s cowardly leadership (which I believe was intentional: he wanted Trump to fail), we now no longer have the ability to legislate any changes. Certainly not any changes which would put any Democrat at risk. Can Trump get an AG who will find the (quite possibly few) people at Justice who are willing to enforce the law? I don’t know. But I hope he can – because if he can’t, then Civil War will come. I won’t want it to come. I’ll hate it when it comes. But it will come – because one thing people on our side are learning is that there is no justice for us. Unless at least some major Democrats are set in Flynn’s position, we’ll know that there is zero chance of a fair outcome…and people who are convinced that all outcomes will be unfair to them will start to take vigorous and direct action against their oppressors.

There is still a small window of opportunity for justice to prevail – I hope it does. But if Injustice is our fate, then I do believe that enough Americans will draw the logical conclusion from that.

Thinking About the Ruling Class vs Everyone

Over in Britain, the Brexit vote in Parliament has been delayed – because it probably would have gone down to crushing defeat and forced PM May’s ouster. I have no sympathy – she negotiated a deal which essentially kept the EU in power over Britain…except that, now, Britain wouldn’t even have a say in the EU. This, to me, was a feature, not a bug: the idea being, I’m guessing, that eventually the British people could be convinced that they must rejoin the EU. The plain fact of the matter is that no “deal” needs to be negotiated. All the British government has to do is say, “we’re out” and they’d be done. But that would only have happened if anyone in the British Ruling Class gave a damn about the will of the British people.

Meanwhile, over in France, les Deplorables have been conducting some pretty impressive riots. Seems that the French people have also had it with their Ruling Class selling them down the river. We’ll see how this comes out – personally, I’m hoping it develops into a genuine revolution.

Naturally, the Ruling Class is saying that the Russians are behind the French protests.

Still seeing lots of people speaking in favor of Experts. Ross Douthat has an interesting thing to say on that:

…meritocrats are often educated to be bad leaders, and bad people, in a very specific way — a way of arrogant intelligence unmoored from historical experience, ambition untempered by self-sacrifice. The way of the “best and the brightest” at the dawn of the technocratic era and the “smartest guys in the room” decades later, the way of the arsonists of late-2000s Wall Street and the “move fast and break things” culture of Silicon Valley…

Do read the whole thing. Mostly because you won’t agree with all of it. The bottom line is a fundamental irresponsibility. That they really lack merit and are often wrong isn’t the biggest problem: the biggest problem is that they never have to pay a price. Sowell often points this out in his books: those who propose to do all sorts of odd things are never the people who have to suffer the consequences. I came across a sorta-Conservative guy on Twitter (I’m guess he’s at least modestly famous, but I had never heard of him before) and he was arguing that America must take charge of the world! Be strong! Get out there and fight…and then I looked at his picture and saw a fairly fit, young man but his bio didn’t seem to include anything about military service. I suggested “you, first” to him: that if he wants America to flex her muscles in the world, that he go out and be that muscle…and get back to us once he was deployed.

Mixed right in with that was a small debate with a much beloved (and extremely liberal) friend where he was sort of on the side of Experts. I rejoined that the more stupid a person is, the more vital it is that they be consulted on the major issues. Experts build atomic bombs: morons drink beer and eat chips. On the whole, the more beer-drinking and chip-eating we do, the better off we are.

Chesterton once opined that it was disturbing how few politicians are hanged. And there is more in that than the mere healthy desire to kill those in charge from time to time. The larger issue is that a price must be paid for our follies…and every now and again, it would be salubrious to have those who promoted the follies be first up the scaffold. FDR, George C. Marshall and Ernest King are honored in the United States these days…you can find out all sorts of details about them and stand in rapt admiration over their deeds…but, you’ll find out less about the guys who were buried after dying of dysentery in a squalid, Japanese POW camp, even though the people ultimately responsible for those deaths were, precisely, FDR, George C. Marshall and Ernest King. You know: they made horrible, stupid mistakes…and then got other people, less famous, to pay the blood price to repair their errors. It would be simple justice if, every now and again, the FDR’s, Marshall’s and King’s swung from lamp posts.

But getting that done is very difficult. The problem is that you need people who can have a say but who don’t want to say much. Once upon a time, the Catholic Church tried it – at the peak, they managed to have King Henry II of England flogged for murdering St. Thomas Becket. To tell you how that came out, long term, one only needs say that Henry VIII had St Thomas’ bones scattered. The trouble is that people who care deeply about politics are those who tend to rise in politics…and they’re never terribly interested in fixing things; nor can they be relied upon to hang themselves are regular intervals.

So, Revolution is the only way out of this mess. We here in the United States are fortunate in that we have built in mechanisms which allows us alter or to abolish our government without the necessity of engaging in bloody revolution. Unless, of course, we get a situation where the Ruling Class tries an end run around the Constitution by, say, removing a popularly elected President on bogus charges. We’ll see how that plays out.

But make no mistake about it – we are entering, globally, a revolutionary time. It is a complex battle which pits those who make and do against those who consider themselves smarter than those who make and do. It is your local plumber against the CEO of a Fortune 500 company, if you want it in a nutshell. The victory for our side comes when we successfully demonstrate that the Ruling Class is both corrupt and illegitimate – that is when they’ll be turned out of power.