When I was trying to figure out the common threat for this illustrated edition, I saw that it was that most of these posters involve Leftists being naughty.
My personal history, which sees major stories drop whenever I’m away from my computer, means I think my upcoming trip will trigger an October surprise.
Without fail — and this has held true for the fourteen years I’ve been writing Bookworm Room — whenever I can’t blog, something big happens. Whether I’m doing trial prep, caring for a sick child, experiencing a power outage, or am otherwise away from my computer, big news breaks. Always. It’s as predictable as the sun rising in the east.
I’ll be leaving in a couple of days for a week-long trip, during which time I’ll have minimal internet access. (Don’t worry, though, because Wolf Howling will keep this site lively.) Because I’ll be mostly incommunicado, if the past is a predictor of the future, an October surprise, whatever it may be, is coming down the pike.
I’ve been amusing myself trying to imagine what the surprises might happen. One of my theories is that James O’Keefe, of Project Veritas, will drop a really big video about the Deep State. The last few videos were amusing, but they were about fairly small fry Leftists abusing the taxpayer’s dime while working for the government. I think O’Keefe has something big he’s still holding on to.
I’ve also been hoping for the last year and a half that Sessions will start indicting people. I’ve been clinging for months to the theory that the feud between Sessions and Trump is theater, intended to create distance between the two when the indictments drop. Yeah, yeah, I know this is just a gossamer-fine fantasy, but I still like it, so I’m still hoping it’s an October surprise.
Lastly, I wonder if an Inspector General will have something interesting to say in the next ten days. The two Inspector Generals I know of have been very, very quiet. Too quiet, if you know what I mean….
And that’s kind of where my imagination runs out on the conservative side of the aisle. On the Leftist side of the aisle, I expect Mueller to announce all sorts of horrible things about people close to Trump, or at least closer to Trump than the other people Mueller’s caught in his web. Because I think the Russia collusion is a sham that was cooked up within the FBI, DOJ, CIA, and State Department (not to mention the White House), whatever Mueller’s cooked up won’t be fundamentally serious, but it will keep the media happy in the days before the election.
Your ideas, please?
The unproven calumnies aimed at Donald Trump’s head are a reminder that, when governments, corporations or mobs deal in false accusations, justice is dead.
Within the past few days, Bob Woodward dropped a book claiming to have first, or second, or third hand information from anonymous people who are, like, totally in the know, and thereby backing up Omarosa’s claim that Donald Trump is a crazy meanie. With perfect timing, an anonymous, but nevertheless really important person, wrote an op-ed for the New York Times in which s/he announced that Trump is a crazy meanie, so that the person has been forced to mount a seditious movement . . . er, sorry, a Deep State movement . . . er, sorry, a resistance . . . er, sorry, a “steady state” movement (yes, really — “steady state”) to undermine the will of those American people who just happened to elect Donald Trump.
From the moment Trump got the Republican nomination, and with increasing hysteria and ferocity after he won, he’s been called a traitor, a Hitler, an idiot, a drooling idiot, a madman, a sex-crazed madman, a Nazi, a fascist, a criminal — and those are the nice things that we’re hearing about him. Oh, and again, these accusations come with striking regularity from anonymous sources.
I don’t see any of those things when I look at Trump. Instead, I see someone like my dear departed client. My friend was brilliant, chaotic, irascible, and one of the hardest workers I’ve ever seen, a man to whom vacations were anathema.
My friend also hated yes-men. Instead, he forced people, often rudely or brutally, to challenge his ideas. Sometimes he went his own way, but just as often he listened to other people’s positions and acted upon them. He was a difficult man to work for, but a strong and loyal friend. More than that, he sharpened my brain and elicited from me the best thinking I could offer anyone as a legal adviser. I was my best, smartest self when I worked for him. You can imagine how I miss him.
Trump is even more brilliant than my friend, and more persuasive and manipulative. I actually think he has as good a chance as any man on earth to bring the Deep State down rather than to be done-in by that same Deep State. Moreover, even as the media, Hollywood, and the Democrat Party (all heads of the same Leftist hydra) hurl non-stop, bizarre, anonymous, unfounded accusations at Trump, the American people are may possibly notice something interesting about this brilliant, difficult man: No matter the chaos leading to them (a stimulating, abrasive process), his actions are rational and, even better, really effective.
Leftists naturally insist that it was just another Obama miracle that, the very moment Trump stepped into office, all of Obama’s policies, which hitherto had failed, suddenly blossomed into effectiveness. Sane people, though, know there is no such magical coincidence.
Instead, Kurt Schlicter’s normals (that would be you and me) think that Trump’s policies are responsible for the bursting economy (which especially benefits minorities); the low jobless rate (especially benefiting minorities); the “tariff war” that resulted in Europe, China, and Mexico making huge concessions; the military demise of ISIS; the economic collapse in Iran; the long-awaited dismissal of Palestinian grievances and the end of subsidies for terror; the reinstatement of civil rights for college men; and North Korea’s willingness to engage with South Korea and give up its nukes. [Read more…]
This is a hodge-podge about debased funerals, corrupt investigations, stupid Leftists, Hollywood hate, and other stuff to amuse and dismay the reader.
Regarding the obsequies for McCain, it’s clear that the Wellstone funeral was a warm-up. I’d like to think that ordinary Americans, rather than being moved politically by demagoguery over a dead body (demagoguery that same dead person, when alive, planned for), won’t be impressed but will be disgusted. And that’s all I have to say on the subject.
McCain’s seat is not a hereditary asset. Rumor has it that the Arizona governor is contemplating giving McCain’s seat to his daughter, the execrable Meghan, or to his meaningless (but nicely wealthy) cipher of a wife, Cindy.
This is an appalling idea. These Senate seats belong to the American people. They are not family sinecures or heirlooms. Whatever drives Governor Ducey’s decision-making about filling that seat, it better be for the good of Arizona and the Republicans who elected McCain, and not for the good of the McCain political dynasty.
Aretha Franklin’s funeral turns into a circus. Aretha Franklin was a woman of tremendous talent who, so far as I know, always comported herself with dignity during a long life in the public eye. I wonder what she would have made of her funeral.
In the seats of honor were an antisemitic, anti-White, anti-Christian, homophobic madman and all-around hater (Farrakhan), an illiterate race hustler and antisemite (Sharpton), a somewhat literate race hustler and antisemite (Jackson), and a credibly accused rapist and serial sexual assaulter (Bill Clinton) who compulsively ogled an under-dressed entertainer in an obvious and unseemly fashion.
Bill was not alone when it came to sexually compulsive behavior. Bishop Charles Ellis III one of the pastors at the funeral seemingly spent a minute groping singer Ariana Grande (the same woman Bill ogled).
The viewing of the body revealed a raddled old harridan who claimed she had what it took to govern our nation but who is, in fact, so physically compromised she can no longer climb stairs on her own.
Giving a eulogy was a Georgetown sociology professor, Michael Eric Dyson, whose oozing Trump Derangement Syndrome suddenly gushed out in a burst of ghetto language attacking the sitting president. His verbal diarrhea was based upon that fact that Trump stated (accurately) that Franklin, whom he paid for her singing services at his hotels, “worked” for him. In Donald’s world (the real world), where talent is rewarded with well-remunerated employment, that was high praise indeed. Dyson, however, saw things in a different way: [Read more…]
Justice is supposed to be blind. That is not the case in America today and President Trump is partly to blame.
[Update: This today from the Daily Caller:
President Donald Trump chose to have the indictments of 12 Russian hackers announced before his Helsinki summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin, according to a Tuesday Bloomberg report.
Trump wanted the indictments announced ahead of the Monday summit to give him leverage over Putin, a source familiar with the matter told Bloomberg on Tuesday. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein gave Trump the option of having the indictments released before or after Helsinki, according to the report.
Rosenstein cited national security concerns to allow him to share details of grand jury proceedings with Trump.
A portion of this post was based on incomplete information and thus has been edited to reflect the above, that the timing of the indictments was at the behest of Pres. Trump. The thrust of the original argument remains.]
With the Mueller investigation discredited, Frank Bruni suddenly realizes that Trump used America’s winner-take-all system to enact conservative policies.
Frank Bruni’s latest opinion piece at the New York Times — Robert Mueller, You’re Starting To Scare Me — is a fascinating window into the Progressives’ narcissistic mindset. Superficially, the column has a single point: the Mueller investigation is sucking so much oxygen out of the room that nobody is paying attention to what Trump is actually doing. In reality, though, it presents a world in which there can be only one point of view and one way to do things. All other viewpoints aren’t just different, they are unacceptable, even in a two-party democratic republic.
Before I get to the “Trumpian horrors” that Bruni lists, I want to take a minute to comment on his overarching thesis (that Mueller’s investigation sucked all the available oxygen out of D.C.’s news reporting). Much as it pains me to agree with Bruni, I have to. He’s perfectly correct that the Leftist media’s obsessive focus on the elusive Russian collusion theory has left them without time or energy to talk about the other things that Trump is doing.
However, while I’m always happy to blame Mueller for lots of things, the reality is that the silence on Trump’s other activities isn’t Mueller’s fault; it’s the media’s fault. Just see my reference, above, to the media’s “obsessive focus” on Mueller. Nobody is making them devote 90% of their time to that story; it’s their choice.
Bruni’s plaint probably explains why Trump didn’t exercise more executive authority over the past year to constrain the Mueller investigation. It wasn’t just the bad optics of doing so or the fact that Trump is a law-abiding executive and therefore was unwilling to interfere with a process he knew would reveal him to be innocent anyway. It probably suited Trump just fine to have the media off screaming about Mueller’s investigation, leaving him free to govern.
Mueller Bruni is right about his major thesis, though, doesn’t mean he’s right about the minor thesis, which is that Trump has been committing governing atrocities all over the place. Apropos governing atrocities, when I think of them, I think of acts that violate the Constitution or the law of the United States. Some examples would be (1) allowing administrative agencies to legislate, as was the case with Obama’s HHS and EPA mandates; (2) weaponizing the IRS to shut down conservative groups during an election year; (3) spying on reporters; (4) entering into multi-million and billion dollar deals with foreign governments (the Paris Accord and the Iran Deal) without getting Congressional approval; (5) going into war in Libya without Congressional approval; (6) illegal gun-running into Mexico; (8) unilaterally changing Congressionally-legislated immigration laws to align with the Democrat Party platform, etc.
In all the examples I mentioned above, the problem for me is not that I disagreed with Obama’s policies. That’s a given, because Obama comes from a political ideology I oppose and, with him in the White House, I knew that his executive acts would run counter to my desires. However, that’s the way things happen in a “winner takes all” two-party democratic republic. The real problem for me is that each of the above acts exceeded Obama’s executive power under the Constitution or out-and-out violated federal laws. It’s one thing for an executive to pursue legal and constitutional ends that jive with his political ideology, even if I disagree with that ideology; it’s another thing entirely for him to go rogue. [Read more…]
Having heard the news about the raid on Michael Cohen, Scott Adams says “Fire ’em all,” and explains why.
BREAKING: Trump’s personal attorney’s office raided. Now Trump can do some firing. https://t.co/ClXRfxhIkF
— Scott Adams (@ScottAdamsSays) April 9, 2018
[If the above video won’t play, you can find the content here.]
The FBI gave Hillary a free pass for national security violations; now it conducted an outrageous raid against Trump’s attorney right before the IG report.
This morning, the DOJ, based on allegations passed on by Bob Mueller, executed a warrant on Trump’s personal attorney, Michael Cohen, sweeping up a host of material covered by attorney client privilege. Indications are that the information related to Stormy Daniels, something completely unrelated to a single thing about Trump-Russian collusion.
[Update 1: By all accounts, Cohen was fully cooperating with the FBI and DOJ. So why and how this warrant? The procedure for issuing this particular warrant would have had to pass a high bar and involved multiple people at DOJ. My suspicion, reinforced by the following from Liz Shields at PJM, is that it is the mother of all fishing expeditions:
One thing is curious: Mr. Cohen was cooperating with the authorities, so why were the jackboots brought in? A special team of agents will need to go through the material in order to identify communications that are protected under attorney-client relationship. If the New York agents just happen to find something relevant to Mueller’s investigation they can turn it over to the special counsel, The New York Times reports.
So just who made the decision to seek a warrant in this matter? We’re still waiting to find out. It is just being reported that the AG for the Southern District of New York, a Trump appointee, was recused from this matter and he, just like Jeff Sessions did with Rosenstein, turned the matter over to someone else in his office — all with the approval of Rosenstein. Rosenstein also approved the warrant at issue here.]
[Update: Andy McCarthy, writing at NRO, puts the investigation of Cohen in perspective:
Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign was caught hiding the sources of 1,300 large campaign donations, aggregating to nearly $2 million. The campaign also accepted more than $1.3 million in unlawful donations from contributors who had already given the legal maximum.
Under federal law, such campaign-finance violations, if they aggregate to just $25,000 in a calendar year, may be treated as felonies punishable by up to five years’ imprisonment . . .
The Obama campaign did not have a defense; it argued in mitigation that the unlawful donations constituted a negligible fraction of the monumental amount it had raised from millions of “grass-roots” donors. Compelling? Maybe not, but enough to convince the Obama Justice Department not to prosecute the Obama campaign — shocking, I know. During the Christmas holiday season right after the 2012 campaign, with Obama safely reelected and nobody paying much attention, the matter was quietly settled with the payment of a $375,000 fine.
Is the $130,000 in hush money Donald Trump’s personal lawyer paid to porn star Stormy Daniels on the eve of the 2016 election a campaign-finance violation? Probably, although it’s a point of contention. Even if we stipulate that it is, though, we’re talking comparative chump change.
Yet, as that lawyer, Michael Cohen, has discovered, what was not a crime in the Obama days is the crime of the century now. . . .
This is a mockery of equal justice, which makes the execution of this warrant look like an utter abuse of our legal system, all in an effort to overturn the results of the 2016 election.]
This warrant is from the same bastards who have yet – two years after the fact – to execute a warrant to verify that the single most basic fact of the collusion story, that the DNC server was hacked by the Russians. This from the same bastards that allowed Hillary to maintain her private server for months after it became known that she had run all State Dept. business through that server, all but certainly exposing thousands of confidential, secret and top secret documents and items of information in violation of our state secrets laws. During that time, Hillary and her attorney wiped that server clean. And now these bastards, seemingly having found nothing on which to charge Trump relating to Russian collusion, and having given Hillary and her team a pass on crystal clear felonies, go after Trump and/or his personal attorney on a technical violation of election law? These worthless bastards are out of control.
It is hard to express just how outrageous this is [Update: though Alan Dershowitz does a good job of it]:
The attorney–client privilege is one of the oldest recognized privileges for confidential communications. The United States Supreme Court has stated that by assuring confidentiality, the privilege encourages clients to make “full and frank” disclosures to their attorneys, who are then better able to provide candid advice and effective representation.
Indeed, the Attorney Client privilege is not merely judge made law well over a century old, it is part of the Federal Rules of Evidence passed into law by Congress. If a prosecutor is even thinking of violating it, he has a high bar to overcome. That is doubly so in this case where the warrant was issued ex parte, without any chance for Trump or his attorney to object and be heard. [Read more…]
Recent commentary from Adam Schiff, Andrew McCarthy, Lee Smith and others illuminates important issues swirling around the Trump-Russia collusion narrative.
Rep. Adam Schiff, one of the four Congressional Democrats with the clearance to actually put eyes on all of the top secret documents made available to date by the FBI and others as part of the House Intelligence Committee investigation, made a jaw dropping admission in so many words while answering media questions. He admits he has seen no evidence to date to establish any sort of criminal conspiracy between Trump and Russia. In other words, more than a year into this politically-driven investigation, there is no Trump-Russia Collusion.
So, if there is no evidence to support any of the allegations, when are we going to start investigating to determine whether this was a criminal enterprise involving Christopher Steele, CIA Director John Brennan, Fusion GPS, the DNC and others to throw the election to Clinton, destroy Trump’s presidency, and protect corrupt government officials?
Lee Smith, writing at The Federalist, looks in detail at how senior figures in the media, namely New Yorker editor David Remnick, Atlantic editor Jeffrey Goldberg, former New Republic editor Franklin Foer, and Washington Post columnist Anne Applebaum, coordinated with Fusion GPS and the DNC to create an echo chamber, driving the Trump Russia collusion narrative. It is a sordid story that needs to come out as well.
On a related note is a Ted Talk given by Sheryl Attkinson, where she not only puts in perspective “fake news,” but identifies the source of the fake news controversy, much of which involves the Trump-Russia narrative, with a starring role from a Google owner. The progressive left has used the mantra of “fake news” to justify their creep into censoring conservative voices. I’ve long believed that social media sites and the major search engines are so powerful that they need either to be subject to anti-trust litigation and / or they need to be required to adhere to the First Amendment as if they were a public institution. [Read more…]
A year after the collusion story against Trump took hold, we know it’s fake and it’s boomeranging with potentially serious consequences against Democrats.
The year 2017 started with the Proggies pushing the “Trump colluded with Russia” narrative to overturn Trump’s election. 2017 ended with the collusion narrative in tatters and on its way back to bite the Proggies in the posterior, if indeed, as it seems, the entire investigation, including FISA warrants, was a joint operation of the DNC, Hildabeast, Fusion GPS, and the FBI to criminally misuse the legal system to undermine Trump, both during the campaign and then after the election. It makes bugging the DNC headquarters at the Watergate Hotel look quaint in comparison.
So, 2018 starts with the Proggies unable to push the collusion narrative, tied as it is to the Steele dossier, to undermine Trump. Instead, the Proggies are on the defensive, doing their best to claim that the Steele dossier was merely ancillary to the collusion investigation. It is quite the enjoyable “shirt collar” moment.
Going full circle to the moment Trump fired Comey, the new hotness is, once again, that Trump obstructed justice. The only thing that comes anywhere close to a colorable obstruction claim was Trump’s telling Comey that he hoped the FBI could see its way to treating Michael Flynn with leniency. As I pointed out here at the time, Trump’s words, as well as Comey’s contemporaneous interpretation – that he was not being ordered to end the investigation of Flynn – always meant that the event cannot serve as the basis for an obstruction of justice charge. Period.
Indeed, it seems that the Proggies’ primal scream of “obstruction,” always inchoate, now extends far beyond, Flynn. The latest narrative is that Trump, to win the 2016 election, tried to obstruct the entire investigation into collusion between his administration and Russia. Leaving aside, for the moment, that it seems ever more likely that the investigation is itself unlawful, the Proggies are suddenly claiming that they are in possession of new evidence that Trump obstructed everything. This charge comes from the latest op-ed in the Times, Did Trump Obstruct Justice? [Read more…]
Although academia has been seeding American Leftism for 70 years, Trump, despite his many foibles, is the weapon that will destroy that system.
This is going to be a slightly more discursive post than usual, simply because I’m trying to tie together three disparate thoughts. Thought One is how we got here, by which I really mean how the Left got where it is and managed to completely cow conservatives, especially those ostensible conservatives elected to Congress. Thought Two is to remind you to read a stellar post telling Trump how to handle Mueller. And Thought Three is another stellar post explaining precisely why Trump’s support is unwavering, no matter the hue and cry from the Left.
How we got here
We got here because of academia. When Marxism first hit America, it hit at the worker and union level. In America, at least, the workers of the world really were trying to unite. Unfortunately for their initial success, their unity took forms that were antithetical to most Americans.
To begin with, many of the workers were foreign, highlighting the fact that Marxism too was foreign. To Americans who still read the Constitution, Marxism was scarily alien. It’s values were too unlike ours and they resisted it strenuously.
Another problem with early Marxism in America was that many of its early supporters openly espoused violence, which most Americans found frightening. Back in pre-WWII America, nobody on the Marxist side of the equation had the wits to come up with something called Marxophobia and then to try to make Americans feel guilty about it. Americans felt no guilt when they feared the violence and totalitarianism that Marxism promised.
Lastly, Marxists back in the day insisted on talking like Marxists, with all sorts of ridiculous words and phrases such as “dialectic” and “come the Revolution,” and an insistence on talking about the “proletariat” and the “bourgeoisie.” It was, quite simply, off-putting.
What the Marxists figured out during WWII, thanks in no small part to the Left’s huge push to bring America to the aid of the Soviet Union once Hitler invaded Russia, was that, while Americans were not amenable to hard Marxism, they could be totally swayed by soft Marxism. This idea landed hardest and best in America’s colleges and universities. There, mild-mannered professors in rumpled, tweedy suits carefully indoctrinated their students in a whole new way of thinking about America’s liberties.
Mostly, these academics inculcated in their middle-class students a sense of guilt about America’s bounty — never mind that the bounty resulted from hard work and innovation. To the Leftists, America’s wealth, no matter that it was earned, not inherited, was evil, and young people had to pay for their countries’ sins. Moreover, when students protested against this indoctrination (and yes, back in the day, some did), the same Marxists hid behind the Constitution’s protections.
This was a brilliant strategy. If you’ve got the college students, you’ve got the next generation of elementary and high school teachers, and the next generation of news people, and the next generation of screenwriters, and the next generation of women’s magazine writers, and the next generation of college professors. And with each iteration, with each generation that passes through, you can dig in the message harder and deeper, until you end up with the insanity of intersectionality, cultural appropriation, safe spaces, triggers, political correctness, and all the other tropes that work as vehicles for intellectual tyranny.
If you read Helen MacInnes, who wrote during the height of the Cold War, you see everything already spelled out in her books. She had the number of that first generation of indoctrinators. This is most apparent in one of her lesser known books, Neither Five Nor Three, which she published in 1951. [Read more…]
The past week has reinforced one of the most important rules in life and politics: Never give a Leftist an opening. Block him at every turn or you lose.
Never give a Leftist an opening about Israel. As I mentioned earlier, I had the pleasure of attending the 14th Annual Ariel Avrech memorial lecture, at which Daniel Greenfield spoke. One of the points he made was that we Jews and Israel supporters should not enter into arguments justifying or proving our right to exist. Some things, after all, go without saying. Nobody asks Norwegians or Germans to justify their right to their ancestral lands and Jews should not have to do so either.
I’ll add to what Greenfield said by noting that there’s also a very practical reason for avoiding arguments, which is that engaging in an argument also allows the opposition to continue arguing. In this regard, I was reminded of something my sister-in-law, the clinical behaviorist taught me: Don’t argue with a teenager! Instead, reflect what they said but constantly return to your rule, a rule that needs no defending or explaining. Otherwise, you will get sucked into the teenager’s world, one in which your teen has all the time in the world and all the energy to incessantly push his or her cause. Two simple dialogues will suffice:
The wrong way to talk to a teen
TEEN: Can I go to the mall with my friends on Monday night?
YOU: No. It’s a school night.
TEEN: But all my friends are going.
YOU: We’ve talked before about the fact that, just because your friends go, it doesn’t mean you can go.
TEEN: Yeah, but everyone is going. I’ll be the weird dork if I don’t get to go.
YOU: You’re never a weird dork. Look at how many friends you have. People like me.
TEEN: They only like me because I do things with them. If you won’t let me go to the mall….
YOU: Look, we’ve talked about how you need your sleep on school nights.
TEEN: That’s silly. You know that even when I’m home I always go to bed late and I’m fine.
And on it goes, with you constantly responding to the shifting sand of your teen’s argument, and your teen taking every one of your responses as a new opening and a new opportunity. After all, you’ve got a life, while the teen has a monomaniacal need to go to the mall Monday night. Who’s got more stamina for the argument?
The right way to talk to a teen
TEEN: Can I go to the mall with my friends on Monday night?
YOU: No. The house rule is no malls on a week night.
TEEN: But all my friends are going.
YOU: Nevertheless, the house rule is no malls on a week night.
TEEN: That’s not fair!
YOU: I’m sorry you don’t think it’s fair, but it’s the house rule. No malls on a week night.
TEEN: Everyone will think I’m weird if I don’t go.
YOU: [Empathetic listening statement optional here.] Still, you know the rule: No mall on a week night.
Israeli’s, Zionists, and anyone else who supports Israel should take a page out of the smart teen parent’s handbook. Israel is a nation that exists. End of story. Live with it. [Read more…]