Saturday, August 06, 2022

Indiana Leads the Way (Down the Tubes)

Maybe even more than most medical procedures, there are lots of different reasons that someone would need an abortion. Between a quarter and third of American women have had the procedure done, either in a clinic or pharmaceutically.

Because religious hypocrites have made an artificial controversy out of it, women who have had abortions tend to be reluctant to step forward and talk about it -- you could just be asking for a lifetime of hateful judgment and trouble. So even though there are "I Had an Abortion" t-shirts for sale, you won't see many on the street. The religious right has cultivated negative stereotypes of these patients that are far from reality. In today's environment of moralistic suppression, the average citizen remains unaware just how common this medical procedure is.

If you think abortions are something for welfare queens and slutty irresponsible teenagers, ask your wife about her abortion. Ask your sister, your daughter. Ask your mom. They may or may not be honest with you.

Through hook and crook, the Christian Right has been able to load up the Supreme Court with ideologues who surprised no one in their decision to overturn Roe v. Wade and allow states to make abortion illegal. The firehose of horror stories is already opening as girls, women and trans-men are prevented from obtaining medical care they need.

Kansas Republicans put the issue to a vote in the midterm primary election, expecting an easy win, and had their ass handed to them when it turned out a big majority of people, even in Kansas, feel strongly about retaining the right to an abortion if they need one. The far right's rhetoric was clever enough to suck the press into bothsidesing a manmade controversy but it was not enough to prevent actual human beings from expressing themselves at the voting booth. Abortion is not a moral issue, it is a medical procedure, and people are smart enough to know they might need it someday.

Indiana has been the first state to pass a law banning abortion subsequent to the Supreme Court decision. Indiana's law was signed yesterday.

I wonder how that's going to turn out for them.

Earlier this year one of the state's biggest employers, pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly, announced that they would be investing 2.1 Billion dollars in two new manufacturing sites in Indiana's Boone County. That was good news for Indiana. Two point one billion dollars, in what is not our richest state.

Today Eli Lilly made this announcement:

Lilly recognizes that abortion is a divisive and deeply personal issue with no clear consensus among the citizens of Indiana. Despite this lack of agreement, Indiana has opted to quickly adopt one of the most restrictive anti-abortion laws in the United States. We are concerned that this law will hinder Lilly's - and Indiana's - ability to attract diverse scientific, engineering and business talent from around the world. While we have expanded our employee health plan coverage to include travel for reproductive services unavailable locally, that may not be enough for some current and potential employees.

As a global company headquartered in Indianapolis for more than 145 years, we work hard to retain and attract thousands of people who are important drivers of our state's economy. Given this new law, we will be forced to plan for more employment growth outside our home state.

Statement from Eli Lilly and Company

Boom -- there goes that two billion, just like that.

The Republican Party used to be the "pro-business" party, taking management's side against the needs of workers, but lately the GOP has devolved unapologetically to a position of fascist Christian nationalism, replacing capitalist economic principles with self-serving group identity slogans and fundamentalist moralism regarding (other people's) personal, especially sexual, behavior. Well now, as some famous person once said, "As you sow, so shall you reap."

It is bad when Big Pharma commands the high ground, but that's what it's come down to. It's great that Republicans are going to heaven, that's fine, but a company like Lilly needs smart people to work for them here on earth, and who would move to Indiana now? As other states fall into lock-step with the religious movement, the US will become intellectual Swiss cheese, with holes in places where the people who remain are ignorant, uneducated, poor and unemployed, and freely give away their rights. Let's see who follows Indiana's lead.


Anonymous Brian Tyler Cohen: said...

Hell of a week for Biden:

-528k July jobs added
-Unemployment at 3.5% (50-year low)
-Zawahiri killed
-CHIPS Act passes
-PACT Act passes
-Inflation Reduction Act deal
-Gas hits 50+ day low (median US price below $4/gal)
-Kansas protects abortion

And he oversaw it all with COVID.

August 06, 2022 3:58 PM  
Anonymous For anyone needing a break from Christian Nationalists said...

Christians Against Christian Nationalism

As Christians, our faith teaches us everyone is created in God’s image and commands us to love one another. As Americans, we value our system of government and the good that can be accomplished in our constitutional democracy. Today, we are concerned about a persistent threat to both our religious communities and our democracy — Christian nationalism.

Christian nationalism seeks to merge Christian and American identities, distorting both the Christian faith and America’s constitutional democracy. Christian nationalism demands Christianity be privileged by the State and implies that to be a good American, one must be Christian. It often overlaps with and provides cover for white supremacy and racial subjugation. We reject this damaging political ideology and invite our Christian brothers and sisters to join us in opposing this threat to our faith and to our nation.

As Christians, we are bound to Christ, not by citizenship, but by faith. We believe that:

People of all faiths and none have the right and responsibility to engage constructively in the public square.

Patriotism does not require us to minimize our religious convictions.

One’s religious affiliation, or lack thereof, should be irrelevant to one’s standing in the civic community.

Government should not prefer one religion over another or religion over nonreligion.

Religious instruction is best left to our houses of worship, other religious institutions and families.

America’s historic commitment to religious pluralism enables faith communities to live in civic harmony with one another without sacrificing our theological convictions.

Conflating religious authority with political authority is idolatrous and often leads to oppression of minority and other marginalized groups as well as the spiritual impoverishment of religion.

We must stand up to and speak out against Christian nationalism, especially when it inspires acts of violence and intimidation—including vandalism, bomb threats, arson, hate crimes, and attacks on houses of worship—against religious communities at home and abroad.

Whether we worship at a church, mosque, synagogue, or temple, America has no second-class faiths. All are equal under the U.S. Constitution. As Christians, we must speak in one voice condemning Christian nationalism as a distortion of the gospel of Jesus and a threat to American democracy.

August 07, 2022 11:09 AM  
Anonymous Christian Nationalism and the January 6, 2021 Insurrection said...

By now, most Americans understand that Christian
nationalism played a role in last year’s violent attack
on the Capitol. But the movement’s contribution is
much more complex and goes deeper than is widely
appreciated. Understanding its part involves looking
beyond the Christian nationalist activists and signage
at the specific event of January 6, the day that former
President Donald Trump’s attempt to overturn the 2020
election crossed into violence.

In order to grasp the role of Christian nationalism in this
and other recent political developments, it is helpful
to know something about the movement itself — its
structure, its forms of operation, and its ultimate goals.

Because Christian nationalism is identified (or, more
accurately, because it identifies itself) with a religion,
the movement is often understood as a set of religious
and/or theological positions that are then assumed to
lead in a deductive way to a certain set of cultural and
policy preferences, and from there to a certain kind of
politics. But Christian nationalism is, first and foremost,
a political movement. Its principal goal, and the goal of
its most active leaders, is power. Its leadership looks
forward to the day when they can rely on government
for three things: power and influence for themselves and
their political allies; a steady stream of taxpayer funding
for their initiatives; and policies that favor “approved”
religious and political viewpoints.

The strength of the movement is in its dense
organizational infrastructure: a closely interconnected
network of right-wing policy groups, legal advocacy
organizations, legislative initiatives, sophisticated data
operations, networking groups, leadership training
initiatives, and media and messaging platforms, all
working together for common political aims. Its leadership
cadre includes a number of personally associated
activists and politicians, some of them working through
multiple organizations. It derives much of its power and
direction from an informal club of funders, a number of
them belonging to extended, hyper-wealthy families.
It took me some time to navigate the sea of acronyms,
funding schemes, denominations, and policy and kinship
networks, and I lay out much of this ecosystem in my
book, The Power Worshippers. Yet the important thing to
understand about the collective effort is not its evident
variety but the profound source of its unity.

August 07, 2022 11:31 AM  
Anonymous Christian Nationalism and the January 6, 2021 Insurrection said...

A key to the movement’s durability is its influence on
elected political leaders (and their appointees). Its
influence on these leaders depends in large part on its
ability to deliver large numbers of votes in a consistent
way. And its ability to deliver these votes rests on at least
three important mechanisms:

The first is that Christian nationalism serves as an effective
tool for controlling information flows to a significant part
of the population. It is a way of creating a population that
will be receptive to certain forms of disinformation and
immune to other types of information, which the present
leadership often denigrates as “fake news” or “the lying
media.” This gives the leadership cadre, and their political
allies, a tremendous degree of power.

A second mechanism for mobilizing mass political
power involves manufacturing and focusing a sense of
persecution and resentment among the rank and file. To
be clear, the movement draws on a wide range of preexisting
anxieties and concerns. But its real contribution
consists in identifying and promoting grievance and then
aiming it at political opponents.

And finally, the movement offers its supporters a means of
reconciling two seemingly contradictory notions: that our
nation is the greatest nation on earth precisely because
it is a Christian nation; and at the same time that our
nation is overrun with alien and evil forces. On the one
hand, Christian nationalists are America, at least in their
own minds. On the other hand, movement supporters
are persuaded that America is in the grip of malevolent
forces, which they variously identify as “secularists,” “the
homosexual agenda,” “the communist threat,” and even
“demonic organizations,” and they insist they need to
“take America back.” The ability to keep a population in
this state of tension — engaged in an apocalyptic struggle
between absolute good and its opposite — is critical to
the movement’s power.

All three mechanisms were on display during the
attempted coup, which erupted in violence on January
6. On the matter of information flows, there was no
shortage of publicly available evidence on the question
of the integrity of the 2020 election. There was no factual
support for the fraudulent claims that were repeatedly
promoted by Mr. Trump and used as the pretext for his
attempted coup. There are of course many sources of
disinformation, and a number have become the focus
of commentators: social media in general, Fox News,
Breitbart News Network, and too many others to count.
All played significant roles, no doubt. But it is clear that
disinformation about the 2020 election was promoted
by many Christian nationalist leaders and organizations,
and it had a lasting impact among the rank and file. Within
the Republican base, survey data shows2 that white
evangelicals are the most likely cohort to believe in Mr.
Trump’s election lies.

August 07, 2022 11:38 AM  
Anonymous Christian Nationalism and the January 6, 2021 Insurrection said...

Many Americans have underestimated the movement’s
influence on our politics, in part because we often hear
predictions of the movement’s imminent demise — usually
accompanied by reporting on the rising numbers of the
so-called “nones.” These predictions overlook the fact
that you don’t need to win the support of a majority of
Americans to dominate in election cycles or to transform
society through the courts. In a country where around 40
percent of people don’t vote, an organized and committed
minority that turns out to vote in disproportionate
numbers can dominate in election cycles. The politics of
minority rule are further entrenched through flaws in the
American electoral system, such as voter suppression,
gerrymandering, and other antidemocratic practices
that many of the movement’s political allies are intent
on promoting.

The leadership of the Christian nationalist movement
conveys messaging to their followers through a wide
range of means. Among the most important is the
targeting and exploitation of the nation’s conservative
houses of worship. The faith communities may be
fragmented in a variety of denominations and theologies,
but movement leaders have had considerable success in
uniting them around their political vision and mobilizing
them to get out the vote for their chosen candidates.

Leaders of the movement know that members of the
clergy can drive votes. They also understand that if you
can get congregants to vote on a small handful of issues,
you can control their vote. And so they draw pastors into
conservative networks focused on political engagement
and offer them sophisticated tools that they can use to
deliver the “correct” messages about the issues that they
wish to emphasize in election cycles.

Notwithstanding the generally toothless regulations that
the Federal Election Commission imposes on religious
organizations, movement leaders have effectively
turned many conservative houses of worship into a
tax-advantaged way of promoting candidates and promoting
a political party. Some prominent pastors have delivered
explicitly partisan political messages from the pulpit.
Most, however, avoid directly endorsing political
candidates themselves; instead, they may distribute
materials, such as voter guides, that leave little doubt
about which issues ought to matter in election cycles and
which political candidates are aligned with the supposedly
“biblical” worldview.

It is fair to say that the coup attempt started with the
actions of Mr. Trump, who very few people identify
directly with the “family values” that Christian nationalists
frequently claim to support. But this misses the point
about the way this kind of movement operates. Once
the movement laid the basic groundwork for an
antidemocratic politics, others in Mr. Trump’s position
could have done what he did. The movement threw its
support behind Mr. Trump at a critical moment, delivering
to him the Republican Party’s most reliable slice of
electoral votes. He in turn gave the movement everything
he had promised them: power and political access, access
to public money, policies favorable to their agenda, and
above all the appointment of hard-right judges. At the
2021 Road to Majority conference, a gathering of religious
right activists, strategists, and political leaders, Senator
Lindsey Graham said, “Bottom line is President Trump
delivered, don’t you think?”

No doubt things might have played out differently had
a different Republican politician come to power in 2016.
But as we look to the future, it would be false comfort to
imagine that the entire episode can be written off to the
actions of a single bad leader. With or without Mr. Trump,
the movement will remain committed to the illiberal,
antidemocratic politics that the former president so
ably embodied.

August 07, 2022 11:43 AM  
Anonymous The backlash to Christianity: Republicans are now panicked — but they only have themselves to blame It's not lack of school prayer causing people to abandon faith, it's that Christianity has become a toxic religion said...

There can be no doubt about it: Religion, especially Christianity — while still powerful in American culture — is in decline. Fewer than half of Americans even belong to a church or other house of worship. Rates of church attendance are in a freefall, as younger Americans would rather do anything with their precious free time than go to church. As religion researcher Ryan Burge recently tweeted, "Among those born in the early 1930s, 60% attend church weekly. 17% never attend. Among those born in the early 1950s, 32% attend weekly. 29% never attend. Among those born in the early 1990s, 18% attend weekly. 42% never attend."

In response to Americans losing interest in faith, Republicans are in a full-blown panic, lashing out and accusing everyone else — liberals, schools, immigrants, pop culture, you name it — for this shift in religious sentiment. Worse, more are advocating the use of force to counter this decline. If people don't want religion, well, too bad. More Republicans are arguing that Christianity should not be optional — First Amendment be damned.

"There's also growing hostility to religion," Justice Samuel Alito recently whined, in response to criticism of recent Supreme Court decisions meant to foist fundamentalist beliefs on non-believers, particularly the overturn of Roe v. Wade.

As Jack Jenkins of Religion News Service reported, increasing numbers of Republicans are ignoring the plain text of the First Amendment — which says the government shall "make no law respecting an establishment of religion" — in favor of the tortured myth that there's no separation of church and state. Former Ohio treasurer and failed Senate candidate Josh Mandel, Rep. Lauren Boebert of Colorado and, most troublingly, Justice Neil Gorsuch have all dismissed the idea that such a separation is mandated by the Constitution.

Christian nationalism, the idea both that the U.S. should be an explicitly Christian nation and that the laws should enforce fundamentalist Christian beliefs, used to be an unthinkable idea in American politics. Now it's normal among the Trumpist branch of the GOP. As Heather "Digby" Parton writes, the GOP candidate in Pennsylvania's gubernatorial race, Doug Mastriano, barely hides his Christian nationalist views. Instead, he pals around with Gab CEO Andrew Torba, who openly says things like, "We don't want people who are atheists. We don't want people who are Jewish," because this is supposedly "an explicitly Christian country."

And, of course, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia has made this crystal clear, recently declaring: "We should be Christian nationalists."

This term, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of a high school football coach who wants to lead Christian prayers from the 50-yard line during games, which is a direct reversal of decades of jurisprudence against coerced religious displays in public schools. Gorsuch defended the ruling by claiming that the prayer was merely a private act, despite being held in public and done in a way to make players feel they would be penalized for not joining. But right-wing groups understand fully that the ruling was meant as an open invitation to forced Christian prayer in schools. As the Washington Post reported this week, "activists are preparing to push religious worship into public schools nationwide." Your kid may be Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, atheist or otherwise non-Christian, but too bad. They better recite the Lord's Prayer in class or risk being punished or ostracized.

August 07, 2022 4:07 PM  
Anonymous The backlash to Christianity: Republicans are now panicked — but they only have themselves to blame It's not lack of school prayer causing people to abandon faith, it's that Christianity has become a toxic religion said...

As blogger Roy Edroso documents, Republicans are justifying this turn towards compelled religious performance by whining about the empty pews in their church. He points to an op-ed by David Marcus at Fox News in which Marcus complains about declining faith and argues that the recent Supreme Court ruling will turn things around. "[I]t will be a new day for prayer in public schools. And God will operate a bit more openly," Marcus gushes.

Mandated faith is morally reprehensible and in direct violation of human rights. But it's also wrong to pin this decline in religious fervor to laws and customs protecting religious minorities from such coercion. On the contrary, if Republicans want to know who is to blame for young people abandoning the church in droves, they should look in the mirror.

As Robert Jones of the Public Religion Research Institute told Salon in 2017, there's "a culture clash between particularly conservative white churches and denominations and younger Americans" over issues like science, education, and gender equality. Younger people brought up in these churches increasingly reject the sexism, homophobia, and anti-science views of their elders. Since the churches won't reform to be more egalitarian and pro-science, they find that these younger people are walking away altogether.

These trends will likely only accelerate in the wake of the Roe overturn, especially as Republicans grow more fanatical in their efforts to punish Americans for having sex. All but eight Republicans in the House voted against the legal right to use contraception. Fewer than a quarter of them voted to support same-sex marriage rights. Both of these rights are wildly popular. Eighty-four percent of Americans believe in the right to use contraception (and over 99% of those who have had heterosexual sex have used it). Over 70% of Americans believe in the right to same-sex marriage.

The more both Republicans and the Christian establishment reject these basic rights, the more they can expect to be rejected themselves, especially by younger people.

"[T]hese days it seems the people most likely to identify themselves as Christians tend to be Republicans as well the most vicious, hateful, un-Christian sons of bitches you'd ever want to meet," Edroso writes. Sure, some people respond by seeking liberal churches. But it's simpler and easier to just give up on being a Christian altogether, to drop all that baggage.

As an atheist myself, I really don't care if large numbers of people give up religion. On the contrary, it seems like a sensible choice to me. But if Republicans don't like people losing faith, well, they need to admit they did this to themselves. If they'd moderated their views and made their churches more tolerant and welcoming places, more people would be interested in attending. And all this talk of forced prayer and Christian nationalism isn't going to help matters, but will instead make ordinary people hate them even more. As with the GOP-led book bans only leading more kids to read the forbidden books, Republican attempts to foist their beliefs on others only causes more backlash against Christianity itself.

August 07, 2022 4:07 PM  
Anonymous the coming education election... said...

The single most bizarre aspect of the COVID-19 pandemic policy response was the shutting of schools, public and private. One country never did that—Sweden—and the results were fabulous: zero deaths and zero educational losses. That this was the right choice should have been obvious from the beginning.

COVID-19 was never a serious threat to kids, mercifully.

In those fateful days, 55 million U.S. kids were suddenly sent home, and their parents’ lives were massively disrupted to care for them and oversee their education. That happened for those lucky enough to be able to homeschool—a practice once nearly illegal and then suddenly made mandatory—but for millions of kids, they simply slipped through the cracks, some losing as much as two years of education.

When the kids finally went back, they faced a coronaphobic environment with mandatory masking, as well as a general message that they and their friends are disease vectors and that they had better comply. They were hit with rolling lockdowns in the name of track-and-trace, along with the pathological futility of somehow forever slowing the spread.

The result is a mental health crisis coupled with a dramatic decline in reading and math scores. We really are talking about a lifetime trauma, far worse than a natural disaster. It was entirely man-made. It should raise fundamental doubts about the wisdom of our overlords.

August 07, 2022 10:51 PM  
Anonymous the coming education election... said...

So why did the shutdown happen?

As far as I can tell, such an egregious policy response has been baked into the modeling since 2006. The nonmedically minded computer programmers who put together the whole idea of disease avoidance through “social distancing” developed an obsession with stopping schools, particularly ending school buses. In their view, kids are uncontrollable disease spreaders, so the only option is to put a stop to the whole enterprise.

An earlier modeling exercise for lockdowns written by Neil M. Ferguson of Imperial College London and published in Nature just assumed that school closures would reduce the “attack rates” of a virus by 40 percent. This was echoed in 2006 by Robert Glass and his top two acolytes, Richard Hatchett and Carter Mecher, both of whom were pushing hard for school closures throughout February 2020 and somehow managed to get their way.

“Just watch kids with runny noses and coughing and sneezing and touching one another (especially the younger ones),” Veterans Administration consultant Mecher wrote in March 2020 to public health officials all over the country. “You couldn’t design a better system to spread disease. Schools and daycare centers are clearly amplifiers of disease transmission. … We can guarantee that if the US does not close schools now, they will eventually close all the schools and universities out of desperation.”

As for the downside, forget about it, he said.

“We don’t need to exhaust ourselves searching for perfect solutions to address all these challenges associated with the 2nd and 3rd order consequences of school closure.”

Strange how Mecher otherwise stayed out of the public eye for the duration of the pandemic.

In the big picture of things, the school shutdowns made absolutely no sense either epidemiologically or politically. The public school system in this country has been considered the crown jewel of Progressive achievements for more than 100 years. They began in this country in the 1880s at the state level as an effort to Americanize immigrant communities. They gradually became part of the normal function of government at all levels.

One might have supposed that the ruling class establishment would protect the schools above all else, not shut them down for fear of a virus that poses a near-zero risk to the kids. The flu pandemics of 1958 and 1969 didn’t cause this, and not even the polio scares of the 1940s were enough to force school closures. That it all happened in 2020 is a measure of just how bonkers the world became nearly overnight.

Now there’s a real crisis at work in even finding teachers, many of whom have been massively demoralized not only from the closures but also the vaccine mandates. The Washington Post reports that “rural school districts in Texas are switching to four-day weeks this fall due to lack of staff. Florida is asking veterans with no teaching background to enter classrooms. Arizona is allowing college students to step in and instruct children. The teacher shortage in America has hit crisis levels—and school officials everywhere are scrambling to ensure that, as students return to classrooms, someone will be there to educate them.”

This problem is coupled with the huge demographic upheaval of parents with young families fleeing the blue states for red ones in search of a better place to raise the ones they love the most.

August 07, 2022 10:52 PM  
Anonymous the coming education election... said...

This might also be a tremendous opportunity for reform—dramatic reform. The education question shouldn’t actually be too difficult for any society that considers itself to be free. Parents want their kids to be educated, and many institutions and people are thrilled to be part of the project. It might be heresy to say it, but consider that the entire industry would be better off without any government involvement at any level.

There’s no reason why the entire sector should be treated like something uniquely requiring government intervention to make possible. We know now that government can’t be trusted in this realm. In fact, this trust may never return. Public schooling was already entering a crisis phase with curricula ever more detached from parents’ wishes and kids being treated inhumanely in an increasingly mechanized and bureaucratized system heavy with administrative expense.

The issue of homeschooling should at least be fully settled by now. Anyone who wishes to do so should be free to do so. But what about myriad hybrid schools that combine family, community, religious institutions, and civic associations? Most states have far too many regulations—including teacher certifications and curriculum requirements, as well as laws on compulsory attendance—that make the formation and development of more complex solutions too difficult.

If the Republicans are looking for solutions here, they should start with getting the federal government entirely out of the picture, starting with the immediate abolition of the Department of Education, which has done nothing to improve educational systems and much to inhibit innovative solutions at the local level.

It’s also time to revisit the issue of so-called child labor laws (imposed only in 1938) that stop hybrid school-work solutions and end up conscripting kids into an inhumane environment for 12 years. It’s pointless. Even now, kids on family farms (and also child actors!) are free to enjoy employment while also pursuing school studies. This right needs to be extended to everyone. It’s preposterous that a 13-year-old can’t legally serve a sandwich in a local shop and get paid to do so.

Beyond that, deregulation of the entire educational sector should be the main theme here. And the system of funding needs dramatic change, too. Right now, it’s tied to property taxes, which, in turn, are linked to the system of school districts, which profoundly affects housing prices and ends up making most schools “public” in name only. A just system would link payments made to services provided, just as with private schools.

The system we have now is in the midst of an unsustainable crisis that’s crying out for dramatic change. The incredible irony is that U.S. educational institutions were massively disrupted and even wrecked by the very same crowd that built them in the first place. Even The New York Times is publishing writers who now say they never should have closed.

Indeed, but for all the catastrophic results, at least it has created a giant opportunity for massive reform that rejects the top-down, property-tax-funded, bureaucratically controlled model rooted in control, coercion, and compulsion, in favor of a system better suited to a free people. The way to prevent school lockdowns from ever happening again is to create a giant wall between government and education, then let millions of flowers bloom

August 07, 2022 10:53 PM  
Anonymous Roevember is coming said...

Roe, Roe, Roe your vote!

Oh and thanks for the 3-part piece of crap from:

Jeffrey Albert Tucker (/ˈtʌkər/; born December 19, 1963) is an American libertarian writer, publisher, entrepreneur and advocate of anarcho-capitalism and Bitcoin.

For many years he worked for Ron Paul, the Mises Institute, and Lew Rockwell. With the American Institute for Economic Research (AIER) he organized efforts against COVID-19 restrictions starting in 2020, and he founded the Brownstone Institute think tank in 2021 to continue such efforts.

As of 2021, he is Chief Liberty Officer (CLO) of[1] He is an adjunct scholar with the Mackinac Center for Public Policy,[2] a research affiliate of RMIT University's Blockchain Innovation Hub,[3] and an Acton Institute associate.[4]

He's LYING about children not suffering from COVID-19.

No surprise there!

August 08, 2022 7:12 AM  
Anonymous Roevember is coming said...

Latest count for the Montgomery County Executive race:

David T. Blair
Democratic 8,328 21,026 26,077 55,431 39.17%
Marc Elrich
Democratic 7,453 20,575 27,445 55,473 39.20%
Peter James
Democratic 325 1,142 959 2,426 1.71%
Hans Riemer
Democratic 4,203 10,838 13,136 28,177 19.91%

Montgomery executive race: Elrich claims victory as Blair seeks recount

August 08, 2022 7:44 AM  
Anonymous Abortion rights supporters are availing themselves of an unlikely tool: Weapons that conservatives left behind in their battle against the Affordable Care Act: “each competent adult shall have the right to make his or her own health care decisions.” said...

As it turns out, a number of state constitutional amendments passed by Republicans in the early 2010s in an effort to counter the Affordable Care Act, symbolically or otherwise, are now being explored as avenues to overturn restrictive abortion bans. These so-called “health care freedom” amendments—versions of which were proposed in at least 44 states and successfully written into five state constitutions—were put forth by conservatives when opposition to Obamacare was near its highest point. A decade later, Obamacare remains mostly intact and highly popular, while these amendments are suddenly proving to be useful in ways their authors never intended.

“When you look at the political context in which [the constitutional amendments] were happening, there was this anti-Obamacare debate,” said Dr. Philip Rocco, a political science professor at Marquette University and co-author of a book exploring state challenges to the ACA. “Now a part of these state constitutions, they could be read far more broadly.”

Nowhere is this phenomenon more evident than in Wyoming, one of the 13 states with a “trigger” law on the books that was designed to immediately outlaw abortions once Roe was overturned.

In late-July, a coalition of Wyoming residents, medical providers, and abortion-supporting nonprofits filed a lawsuit alleging that House Bill 92—the state law which makes performing an abortion in Wyoming a felony crime punishable by up to 14 years in prison except in rare cases of rape, incest or health risks—was unlawful and unenforceable. Among the plaintiffs’ many arguments against the legislation was that it allegedly violated Article 1, Sec. 38 of the Wyoming state constitution, which guarantees that “each competent adult shall have the right to make his or her own health care decisions.”

That language was inserted into the constitution via a 2012 ballot initiative designed to push back against Obamacare’s individual mandate. A couple years earlier, efforts to amend the constitution with language more specifically tailored to the ACA fell short of the two-thirds legislative majority required to send the matter to the voters. Instead, broader language was put forth, with proponents promising the amendment would “preserve individual rights.” Even at the time, however, some worried the sweeping amendment might go too far—then-State Representative Mary Throne, a Democrat who represented Cheyenne, told a local paper the amendment might have unintended consequences. Nonetheless, on November 6, 2012, Wyomingites voted 73–22 to approve the broad provision enshrining the right to health care determination for residents of the Equality State.

August 08, 2022 2:43 PM  
Anonymous Mark Eades said...

Dumb Christo-Fascist Lauren Boebert Wants Required "Biblical Citizenship Training" in Public Schools

In an interview on right-wing Christian talk show FlashPoint, dumb Christo-fascist congresswoman Lauren Boebert called for legislation requiring “biblical citizenship training” in public schools.

As any well-informed American knows — and as any member of Congress certainly should know — the “Establishment Clause” of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution explicitly prohibits any official religion being established in the United States. The founders of the United States themselves and generations of Americans since have interpreted this to mean separation of church and state as a basic principle of American government.

Lauren Boebert lacks even a high school graduate’s understanding of American government, because she isn’t a high school graduate, and has evidently never sought to educate herself on such matters. However, Republicans far more educated than Boebert have likewise denied that any such separation between church and state exists, and openly call for the United States to be transformed into a Christian nationalist theocracy.

As bad as they are now, they’re only going to get worse.

August 09, 2022 9:28 AM  
Anonymous Right-wing Lion caught lyin' said...

FTC Takes Action Against Lions Not Sheep and Owner for Slapping Bogus Made in USA Labels on Clothing Imported from China

Owner Sean Whalen Published Video Stating that He Could Conceal Origins of Apparel by Ripping Out Made in China Tags and Replacing with Made in USA

The Federal Trade Commission today took action against apparel company Lions Not Sheep Products, LLC, and its owner Sean Whalen for falsely claiming that its imported apparel is Made in USA. According to the FTC’s complaint, the company added phony Made in USA labels to clothing and accessories imported from China and other countries. The FTC’s proposed order requires Lions Not Sheep and Whalen to stop making bogus Made in USA claims, come clean about foreign production, and pay a monetary judgment.

“Companies that slap phony Made in USA labels on imported goods are cheating their customers and undercutting honest businesses, and we will hold those companies and their executives accountable for their misconduct,” said Sam Levine, Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. “American consumers have the right to know the truth about where their clothes and accessories are made.”

Utah-based Lions Not Sheep is an apparel company that sells t-shirts, sweatshirts, jackets, and sweaters on their own website as well as through Amazon and Etsy. The company and its owner Whalen heavily marketed it through social media channels, claiming that it would “show people it’s possible to live your life as a LION, Not a sheep.” Their Made in USA claims online and on product labels included “Made in the USA,” “Made in America,” “Are your products USA Made?” “100% AMERICAN MADE,” and “BEST DAMN AMERICAN MADE GEAR ON THE PLANET.” In most cases, the products advertised using these claims consist of wholly imported shirts and hats with limited finishing work performed in the United States.

The complaint alleges that on Oct. 8, 2020, Whalen published a video of himself to his social media accounts, with the title MADE IN AMERICA! alongside a Chinese flag. In the video, Whalen said he could conceal the fact that his shirts are made in China by ripping out the origin tags and replacing them with tags stating that the merchandise was made in the United States.

Enforcement Action

The proposed order settling the FTC’s complaints against Whalen and Lions Not Sheep prohibits the conduct alleged in the complaint. The order requires that Whalen and Lions Not Sheep:

Pay judgment: They must pay a judgment of $211,335.

Cease making bogus Made in USA claims: They must stop claiming that products are made in the United States unless they can show that the product’s final assembly or processing—and all significant processing—takes place here and that all or virtually all ingredients or components of the product are made and sourced here. Under the terms of the proposed order, Whalen and Lions Not Sheep are prohibited from labeling products as “Made in USA” unless the final assembly or processing, and all significant processing that goes into the products occur in the United States; and unless all or virtually all ingredients or components of the products are made and sourced in the United States. They must also submit compliance reports.

Come clean about foreign production: Under the order, any qualified Made in USA claims must include a clear and conspicuous disclosure about the extent to which the product contains foreign parts, ingredients or components, or processing. Finally, to claim that a product is assembled in the United States, Whalen and Lions Not Sheep must ensure that it is last substantially transformed in the United States, its principal assembly takes place in the United States, and U.S. assembly operations are substantial.

August 09, 2022 1:31 PM  
Anonymous The difference between "this" and Watergate said...

“What’s the difference between this and Watergate?” Donald Trump raged in a statement Monday night after FBI agents.

Well, as a Watergate and FBI historian, four things stand out to me:

The idea the FBI launched a raid on a former president would have been approved and monitored at the highest level of the Justice Department; hard to even imagine how high the bar of probable cause must’ve been for the Bureau to initiate such a politically sensitive search….

A search warrant means an independent federal judge ALSO signed off on the probable cause and, independently, believes evidence there was likely a crime committed AND that more evidence would be found at Mar-a-Lago. That’s huge too.

The fact the search apparently didn’t leak until basically when word came from Donald Trump himself shows the FBI and the Justice Department conducted this search by the book and a high degree of integrity. No leaks? Impressive. Surely only a small team knew inside DOJ….

Taken together, this is one of the most significant, sensitive, and politically explosive actions the US Justice Department and FBI has ever taken—one of a tiny handful of times it’s ever investigated a president.

Bottom line: The FBI & DOJ must’ve known they had the goods.

Originally tweeted by Garrett M. Graff (@vermontgmg) on August 8, 2022

Marshall Cohen

Trump is raising hell, accusing Dems of "weaponizing" DOJ for political purposes. This goes without saying, but here's a reminder: Trump was the king of politicizing DOJ during his presidency. Here's a list of 25 political opponents that he publicly said should be investigated.

1. 2016 Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton for the Uranium One deal
2. The Clinton campaign for supposed "Russian collusion
3. The Clinton Foundation for alleged "corruption" with foreign countries
4. Former President Barack Obama for not doing enough to stop Russian election-meddling
5. The Obama administration for "illegal surveillance" of the Trump campaign
6. President Joe Biden for participating in a "treasonous ...coup" against his campaign while VP
7. Rep. Adam Schiff for "treason" during the 2019 impeachment probe
8. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for supposedly "lying" about her ties to Russia
9. Senator Mark Warner (D-VA) for "illegal[ly]" discussing then Mueller probe
10. Senator Richard Bllumenthal (D-CT) for lying about his military service
11. Former Rep. Elijah Cummings for the "corruption mess" in Baltimore
12. The anonymous NYT op-ed author for threatening "national security"
13. Tech giant Google for "trán" and "working with the Chinese government
14. The FBI to see if it "infiltrated" the Trump campaign with informants
15. The Justice Department to see if it "infiltrated" the Trump campaign with informants
16. Special counsel Robert Mueller for this "conflicts" of interest
17. Mueller prosecutor Andrew Weissmann for unspecified wrongdoing
18. Former FBI Director James Comey for his "lies" and "leaks"
19. Former FBI Director Andy McCabe for political donations receive by his wife
20. Ex-Brithis spy Christopher Steele for his "phony and corrupt" dossier
21. Opposition research firm Fusion GPS for its coordination with Steele
22. Former DOJ official Bruce Our for meetings with Chris Steele
23. Former FBI agent Peter Strzok about his political texts with Lisa Page
24. Former FBI lawyer Lisa Page about her political texts with Strzok
25. MSNBC host Joe Scarborough regarding the possible "murder" of his intern in 2001

8:36 AM · Aug 9, 2022·Twitter Web App

August 09, 2022 1:43 PM  
Anonymous Typo repair said...


13. Tech giant Google for "trán" and "working with the Chinese government


13. Tech giant Google for "treason" and "working with the Chinese government

August 09, 2022 2:01 PM  
Anonymous "Only the guilty plead the fifth" said...

Trump Takes the Fifth Amendment in New York Deposition

Donald J. Trump declined to answer questions from the New York state attorney general’s office on Wednesday, a stunning gamble in a high-stakes legal interview that is likely to determine the course of a civil investigation into his company’s business practices.

In a statement released shortly after the questioning began on Wednesday, Mr. Trump said he would invoke his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination, explaining that he “declined to answer the questions under the rights and privileges afforded to every citizen under the United States Constitution.”

That means he knows he is guilty.

August 10, 2022 10:57 AM  
Anonymous homosexuality never produces life, two of 'em ain't ever a marriage said...

"Montgomery executive race: Elrich claims victory as Blair seeks recount"

how shameless can a local politician be?

an incumbent gets the support of 39% of voters and calls that victory...


August 10, 2022 9:56 PM  
Anonymous Violent Crime: let's give it a more accurate name: abortion... said...

"Montgomery executive race: Elrich claims victory as Blair seeks recount"

how shameless can a local politician be?

he's been running the county for four years and 61% of voters OF HIS PARTY prefer someone else do it...

and he calls that a victory!

he's the Montgomery County version of Jabba the Hut!


August 11, 2022 2:09 AM  
Anonymous Gov. Hogan heads to Iowa State Fair. said...

WASHINGTON (7News) — The Iowa State fair is known for its corn dogs, its cow sculpted from butter, its grilled pork chops and presidential politics. As Republican Larry Hogan considers a run for the White House it’s almost mandatory and so Thursday Hogan is going to the fair in Des Moines, Iowa.

“You have to come in, give it a shot, make your case, look voters in the eye, as we say 'shake their hands look them in the eye' and tell them where you stand,” said University of Iowa political science professor Tim Hagle.

Hagle explains that’s because the Iowa caucuses will once again kick off the presidential primary season in 2024. It is essentially the starting line for the race and those interested in running need to jockey for position now.

In each presidential election year, Iowa traditionally holds the first primary caucuses in the country and New Hampshire has the first primary. Presidential hopefuls have long made stops in both states well ahead of their party’s nomination process.

“Even if you don’t have a lot of name recognition nationally people will listen to you. You can come in, talk to various folks or come to come to the Iowa State Fair, as Gov. Hogan is doing, and meet with other groups as well and that’s how you begin the process," said Hagle.

Hogan won't say whether he is running or not. But lately, he has sure looked like a candidate.

Ahead of the 2020 election, Hogan visited Iowa in March 2019, but insisted that he was only there to attend to National Governors Association business.

In March this year, Hogan said that he would be going to Iowa and New Hampshire to stump for local candidates.

He traveled to New Hampshire for campaign-style appearances. He also met with former President and First Lady George and Barbara Bush in Maine. On Tuesday, in what would seem an appeal to the conservative base, he issued a statement calling on the Biden administration to release the documents authorizing the search of former President Donald Trump’s home at Mar-a-Lago.

On Thursday, Hogan will meet with police, and firefighters and he will flip pork chops with Iowa’s Republican governor at the Iowa Pork tent at the state fair. Then he’ll wander among the animal barns and fair displays to speak with the voters first in line to choose the next president. Professor Hagle says it’s a responsibility Iowans take seriously.

“It’s not like we’re the kingmakers. The way we usually talk about it in Iowa is we separate the contenders from the pretenders," said Hagle.

As for any possible plans to run for president in the 2024 Republican primaries, Hogan has said he would not announce any political plans until after his second term as governor expires. Hogan is term-limited and leaves office in January 2023.

Contribute to Maryland's next governor here:

August 11, 2022 7:05 AM  
Anonymous "Conservatism consists of exactly one proposition, to wit: There must be in-groups whom the law protects but does not bind, alongside out-groups whom the law binds but does not protect." said...

"an incumbent gets the support of 39% of voters and calls that victory."

Elrich got 39.20% whereas Blair got 39.17% of Democratic primary votes in 2022.

See for yourself:

If confirmed after Blair's requested recount, Elrich will win.

Most of us understand that the person who gets the most votes in any contest wins that contest.

Of course Trumpettes posting hateful remarks at 2AM may not understand that simple truth: the person who gets the most votes wins.

August 11, 2022 8:02 AM  
Anonymous The Shovel’s view on the Donald Trump FBI raid said...

We are certainly no fans of Donald Trump – let’s make that clear from the outset. But yesterday’s raid by the FBI on the home of a former president sets a dangerous precedent.

A precedent which now means that anyone who evades taxes, attempts to undermine an election, sexually assaults women, manipulates the value of their assets, uses state resources to enrich themselves or aids and abets the overthrow of a democratically elected government will be subject to investigation.

Is that the world we want to live in? Where anyone accused of insurrection can be subject to questioning from law enforcement officers?

It’s a slippery slope. Before we know it, regular citizens accused of defrauding the government, concealing evidence, manipulating financial documents, tampering with witnesses or perverting the course of justice will also be held to account.

Or to put it another way, if we simply shrug our shoulders and fail to question the actions of the FBI, soon any old Joe Citizen who is suspected of ripping classified government documents into small pieces and flushing them down the toilet will be obliged to answer to law enforcement, as well as their plumber.

If we don’t ask the hard questions about the potential motives of the FBI now, soon any one of us who buries our ex-wife in a small grave at the side of their golf course in order to gain a tax concession will be treated with suspicion.

As Trump supporters put it so clearly yesterday, if this can happen to a President, it could happen to anyone who has committed insurrection, assault or fraud. That’s a chilling thought.

We are on new ground here. As Donald Trump himself made clear, this is the first time a former president’s home has been raided. Proof, if ever we needed it, that the FBI shamefully only targets people who it considers to have committed a crime. Who gave FBI director Chris Wray that authority?

As we made clear earlier, we’re certainly not Trump supporters. But in today’s partisan world, it would be easy to fall into the trap of cheering on the FBI’s actions, without taking a step back to look at the bigger picture. If Trump goes to jail, it opens the door for every lying, corrupt, perverted piece of shit to go to jail too. Is that what we want?

August 11, 2022 12:15 PM  
Anonymous Matt Lewis said...

I’m a Conservative, and I Don’t Know What the GOP Stands For

Free markets? Nope. Limited government. Uh-uh. Strong foreign policy? No, America first. Rule of law? LOL.

You’ve got to stand for something, or you’ll fall for anything (at least according to the great country and western philosopher Aaron Tippin). But it also happens to be true.

Take the Republican Party.

Instead of turning on Donald Trump following the devastating revelations in the Jan. 6 hearings (or, at least, exercising strategic silence), the party’s reaction was to immediately fall in line. Again.

Trump, himself, is full of contradictions. The obvious hypocrisies include: “You can’t resist” (a police officer); “Lock her up!” (back when he thought it was OK to suggest using the government to jail his political opponents); and “If you’re innocent, why are you taking the Fifth?” (before he invoked the Fifth Amendment nearly 450 times this week). Clearly, this is an unprincipled man, whose positions are a matter of convenience.

But his impact on the Republican Party transcends his own moral flexibility. Look no further than the FBI’s search of Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence for proof.

After a 2020 election cycle that saw the “law and order” party criticize Democrats for wanting to “defund the police,” we’ve seen quite a few members of the right’s commentariat blithely wave off video of MAGA rioters beating Capitol police officers with flagpoles. (Those cops’ lives don’t matter, to the Blue Lives Matter crowd.) Now, a lot of those same voices on the right are saying, “Defund the FBI.” So much for lionizing the law enforcement heroes who run toward danger.

Why the reversal? It’s not because the police have suddenly become more abusive, and it’s not because Republicans figured out that standing against law enforcement wins votes. The real reason concerns Trump’s attempt to avoid accountability and oversight.

But this is just one of many outrageously cynical flip-flops for the party of Trump. Today’s GOP is inscrutable, even deranged. And the changes transcend a political reordering that brought more working-class Americans into the GOP fold—swapping free trade for populist protectionism and moving past the wealthy blue blood image evoked by establishment elites like Mitt Romney.

Consider foreign policy.

Ronald Reagan famously showed moral clarity by confronting and calling out the Soviet Union as an Evil Empire. Trump, by contrast, lauded Russian President Vladimir Putin (not to mention other authoritarian leaders of places like North Korea and China).

August 12, 2022 12:48 PM  
Anonymous Matt Lewis said...

Consider a commitment to the American project, itself.

The fundamental goal of conservatism in America was to conserve democracy. Today’s illiberal right wants to destroy it. Conservatives lionized the Founding Fathers and America’s past leaders. Now, for all their fulminating over the left removing statues and renaming schools, some of Trump’s defenders sought to rhetorically tear them down as a way of excusing Trump’s inexcusable behavior in office. Republican politicians boasted about being for the “rule of law” and being “constitutional conservatives.” But then, they supported Trump’s bogus “emergency” order regarding the border wall.

And there’s more. Conservatives long decried the culture of victimhood, yet Trump constantly plays the victim and refuses to accept responsibility for anything (much less blame). Likewise, conservatives have criticized identity politics and “playing the race card.” Trump, who called New York’s attorney general (who is investigating him) a “racist,” does so with glee.

It’s all about power, presumably. But once issues and tactics become indistinguishable from the other side (except to the degree that you have escalated their worst impulses and tactics), the contest becomes a pointless power play. Presumably, it’s about tribalism. But who is our tribe? Absent any transcendent principles or policies, how do we tell the red shirts from the blue shirts?

For the GOP, I’m pretty sure the litmus test is to be pro-Trump. The only color that matters is orange.

The biggest reversal, of course, has to do with reversals. Conservatives have historically espoused a belief in moral absolutes, while decrying moral relativism. Yet, so much of what today’s conservatives say—about the “establishment” and institutions (like the FBI)—could have been spouted by a Berkeley hippie in 1968.

Go down a list of issues—character, values, free trade, earmarks, Russia, spending, law and order, the rule of law, etc.—and you’d be hard-pressed to find any semblance of a consistent position. Today’s Republican Party is 180 degrees different from the party that most of its members—like myself—signed up to join.

So we are left with a party without a foundation, without a roadmap, and without a soul. It does have a brand though, it’s tacky and gold-plated and it reads “TRUMP.”

While it may be possible for the GOP to abandon its premises and coast on the borrowed capital of the past, enduring without a raison d'être requires a constant stream of revenge fantasies to rationalize supporting such a shallow cult of personality.

Absent deep, abiding principles, we’ll fall for anything. Donald Trump probably won’t be around to see the aftermath when the music stops.

August 12, 2022 12:50 PM  
Anonymous Trump first leaked the unredacted warrant — with the names of FBI agents — to Breitbart said...

Four days after Donald Trump publicly confirmed the search of his Mar-a-Lago resort by the FBI, the public now has access to the search warrant.

Shortly after 3 p.m. on Friday, the Justice Department confirmed that the former president's lawyers would not oppose the public release of the search warrant and underlying receipt of materials, which had already begun to circulate widely — including to friendly outlets like Breitbart and the Wall Street Journal.

The right-wing Breitbart initially cited three criminal laws including the Espionage Act, which covers the unlawful retention of defense-related information that could harm the U.S. or aid a foreign adversary, before adding a clarification meant to downplay the severity of the allegations.

The site also included the names of the individual FBI agents involved in the search. The court issued release of the warrant, which was approved Friday afternoon, redacts that sensitive information. On Thursday, a man with a reported history of fervent support for Trump was killed in a shootout with FBI agents.

Signed on Aug. 5 by federal magistrate Judge Bruce Reinhart, the warrant lists the "transmission of national defense information or classified material" and the collection of "any evidence of the knowing alteration, destruction, or concealment of any government and/or Presidential Records, or of any documents with classification markings."

According to Politico, the retrieved documents include the highest levels of government classification. One item was labeled "Executive grant of clemency re: Roger Jason Stone, Jr.," the longtime confidant pardoned by Trump in his final days in office. Another item was labeled "Info re: President of France...

August 13, 2022 7:14 AM  
Anonymous Trump lies and lies and lies some more said...

The National Archives and Records Administration issued a statement Friday in an attempt to counter misstatements about former president Barack Obama’s presidential records after several days of misinformation that had been spread by former president Donald Trump and conservative commentators.

Since the FBI search of his Florida home and club this week for classified documents, Trump has asserted in social media posts that Obama “kept 33 million pages of documents, much of them classified” and that they were “taken to Chicago by President Obama.”

In its statement, NARA said that it obtained “exclusive legal and physical custody” of Obama’s records when he left office in 2017. It said that about 30 million pages of unclassified records were transferred to a NARA facility in the Chicago area and that they continue to be maintained “exclusively by NARA.”

Classified records from Obama are kept in a NARA facility in Washington, the statement said.

“As required by the [Presidential Records Act], former President Obama has no control over where and how NARA stores the Presidential records of his Administration,” the statement said.

Despite the official statement, Trump continued to peddle his false claims in light of The Washington Post report that classified documents relating to nuclear weapons were among the items FBI agents sought in a search of Trump’s Florida residence Monday, according to people familiar with the investigation.

Within minutes of the statement from the Archives, Trump again pushed his evidence-free claim in response to the latest reports, saying, “What are they going to do with the 33 million pages of documents, many of which are classified, that President Obama took to Chicago?”

Trump appears to be addicted to lying, constantly feeding himself more.

August 13, 2022 7:45 AM  
Anonymous Republican response to Trump FBI search raises specter of political violence against law enforcement said...

Death threats and calls for violence against federal law enforcement have surged following the FBI search of former President Donald Trump’s South Florida resort and home, punctuated by an incident Thursday when an armed suspect tried to enter an FBI field office in Ohio.

But Republicans have largely been quiet about the spike of violent threats against law enforcement, despite making support for police a hallmark of their campaigns in response to Black Lives Matter protests against repeated local police shootings of unarmed Black people.

In the immediate aftermath of the search, Trump supporters online, including one extreme-right activist who stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6, talked about being ready to use weapons (“lock and load”) and alleged the country was already in a state of “civil war” — repeating language long used by top cable pundit Tucker Carlson.

In an interview Thursday morning on “Fox & Friends,” longtime anchor Steve Doocy pressed Rep. Steve Scalise, R-La., on why Republicans were not doing more to tamp down threats — some from within their own ranks – against law enforcement.

“A lot of agents are receiving specific death threats because there are a lot of people, online and elsewhere, who are demonizing the FBI,” Doocy said, citing attacks from Reps. Paul Gosar, of Arizona, and Marjorie Taylor Greene, of Georgia, extremist members of the House Republican conference. “Whatever happened to the Republicans backing the blue?”

“We’re very strong supporters of law enforcement, and it concerns everybody if you see some agents go rogue,” said Scalise, the second-ranking Republican in the House, who himself was the target of political violence when a gunman aligned with the left shot lawmakers in 2018.

Pressed on who specifically went “rogue,” Scalise said, “We want to find that out.”

And during a press conference Friday of the top House Republicans overseeing the intelligence agencies and national security agencies, Rep. Elise Stefanik, one of Trump’s top allies, blasted federal law enforcement rather than decry the threats against them.

“House Republicans are committed to immediate oversight, accountability and a fulsome investigation ... regarding Joe Biden and his administration’s weaponization of the Department of Justice and FBI against Joe Biden’s political opponent,” the New York Republican said.

August 13, 2022 8:43 AM  
Anonymous Republican response to Trump FBI search raises specter of political violence against law enforcement said...

Republicans are spurring further violence against law enforcement by toying with conspiracy theories and baseless allegations, said Trygve Olson, an expert on authoritarian tactics and an adviser to the Lincoln Project, a group of current and former Republicans who oppose Trump.

“They are playing with fire in radicalizing people towards the FBI and the rule of law,” Olson said. “It is a very, very dangerous game. The kind of game that if it were happening in any other country would be setting off five-alarm fire bells at the State Department to speak out.”

In a brief press conference on Thursday, Attorney General Merrick Garland announced that he approved the search warrant and filed to have limited amounts of the search warrant and the findings included in its return released to the public. He then decried the threats of violence sent to himself and others in the wake of Monday’s search.

“The men and women of the FBI and the Justice Department are dedicated, patriotic public servants every day,” Garland said. “They protect the American people from violent crime, terrorism and other threats to their safety while safeguarding our civil rights. They do so at personal sacrifice and risk to themselves.”

Trump himself has pushed unfounded accusations about the unprecedented search of a former president’s home, and apparently decided not to fight the release of the search details, hours after Garland filed for its release.

Not long after that, Trump rebutted a stunning Washington Post report that the materials he had taken included highly sensitive intelligence about nuclear programs by claiming, without evidence, that the FBI planted the evidence — the same unsubstantiated claim he made at the beginning of the week in fundraising appeals.

August 13, 2022 8:44 AM  
Anonymous Conservatives can't leave other people's sausage alone said...

Just in time to distract their base from the Cheato Benito hiding nuclear secrets, the wacko right creates another culture war "outrage":

Cracker Barrel accused of going ‘woke’ by pushing plant-based sausage

Cracker Barrel has become the new battleground of America’s culture war after the Southern-themed restaurant chain posted a Facebook notice touting its new plant-based sausage.

“Discover new meat frontiers,” the Lebanon, Tenn.-based company wrote on its Facebook page next to a photo of a serving of scrambled eggs and two sausage patties made by Impossible Foods, the vegan-sourced meat manufacturer.

The post continued: “Experience the out of this world flavor of Impossible Sausage Made From Plants next time you Build Your Own Breakfast.”

The plant-based offering apparently got stuck in the craw of the chain’s customers who thought that the company was betraying its traditional country-style brand.

“I just lost respect for a once great Tennessee company,” one Facebook user wrote.

“You just lost the customer base, congratulations on being woke and going broke…” wrote another commenter.

Another alienated customer wrote: “May be for some folks, but not me. I like old fashioned sausage with my breakfast.”

The jilted customer continued: “If some customers want this and willing to pay for it, then more power to them; but give me real sausage and bacon.”

One Facebook user vowed to never eat at Cracker Barrel again, writing: “Thanks Cracker Barrel now my family won’t be able to dine there because the troves of hippy stoner vegetarian lib cucks will now be invading my favorite chain restaurant and pushing their immoral commie lifestyle on me and my children.”

“I’ll be taking my hard earned money to Waffle House or wherever we can at least smoke inside,” the Facebook user wrote.

Others on Facebook denounced the critics as “snowflakes” who were “getting triggered by a meat alternative showing up on a menu.”

“Y’all can still order regular meat, you know that right?” wrote one commenter.

“Some of y’all need to grow a backbone immediately.”

The Post has reached out to Cracker Barrel seeking comment.

The company responded to one commenter, writing: “The menu is always changing, but our love for our customers never will.”

Cracker Barrel is the latest restaurant chain to test a new plant-based meat alternative.

Burger King, McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Denny’s, Bareburger, Del Taco, TGI Friday’s, Carl’s Jr, Kentucky Fried Chicken, Panda Express, and Pizza Hut are among the chains that have at one time offered plant-based meat alternatives on their menus.

McDonald’s last week concluded its US-based test of its McPlant burger, with no new plans to expand the pilot, according to CNBC. The news sent the share price of Beyond Meat plummeting by some 6% last week.

Despite the setback, the market for plant-based meat alternatives has exploded in recent years, growing to a multi-billion dollar industry due to increased consumer awareness of climate issues as well as abuse of animals in factory farms.

August 13, 2022 11:12 AM  
Anonymous Keep your attention on your own pants, Ted said...


David Edwards

Here's the video of Ted Cruz joking that Elizabeth Warren might have a penis.


12:12 PM · Aug 14, 2022·Twitter Web App

August 15, 2022 9:17 AM  
Anonymous Conservatives maneuvering to place their favorite authoritarian above the law said...

Republicans have all but declared that Donald Trump exists above the law, and Democrats expect them to make that official if they retake the House.

Trump loyalists treat any investigations into the former president as illegitimate, and Democrats have begun to examine various parliamentary tools Republicans could use to essentially defund the various probes and make him untouchable by the law, wrote Washington Post columnist Greg Sargent.

“They want to ensure that Trump is above the law,” said Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA). "[Anyone] who poses a threat to Trump must be deterred, blocked, punished, or fired.”

Reps. Lauren Boebert (R-CO) and Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) have already called to defund the FBI after agents searched Mar-A-Lago, and House minority leader Kevin McCarthy has put attorney general Merrick Garland on notice, and Breyer warned that a GOP House majority could reinstate the obscure Holman Rule that would allow them to use spending bills to target the salaries of specific federal officials.

Rep. Andy Biggs (R-AZ) has already floated that idea, and Republicans could also cut funding for Trump investigations or any prosecutions related to the Jan. 6 insurrection -- even though such measures would never pass a Democratic-controlled Senate or be signed by President Joe Biden.

“I have no doubt whatsoever that they would use the threat of government shutdowns and debt ceiling breaches,” Beyer, who anticipates “some of the worst attacks on the rule of law this country has ever seen.”

August 15, 2022 12:47 PM  
Anonymous TTFers think that a county executive that 61% of his own party won't vote for is a smashing success!.... said...

"Republicans have all but declared that Donald Trump exists above the law"

no Republican has done that

there is no reason to believe Trump has committed a crime

every ex-President has had disputes with the predecessor administration about document retention

they are commonly settled by negotiation

but the truth is, when Trump was President, he had he power to declassify any documents he chose to

the Dems are saying he didn't take the steps to do that but there are no such steps required by law, only tradition

indeed, if there were such a law, it would likely be unconstitutional

and Americans elected Trump with the full knowledge that he doesn't feel constrained by tradition

Dems mistakenly believe there is a unelected governmental deep state with broad authority

they're wrong

and Garland should resign over this

this precedent should not be allowed to stand, else every newly elected President will try this

have Dems learned nothing from Harry Reid's mistake in eliminating the filibuster for judicial confirmations?

August 15, 2022 1:09 PM  
Anonymous TTFers think that a county executive that 61% of his own party won't vote for is a smashing success!.... said...

Donald Trump's office said on Friday that the classified materials the FBI seized from his Mar-a-Lago estate were declassified under a "standing order" while he was president that allowed him to take sensitive materials to the White House residence at night to keep working.

The official statement is likely to become the focus of the president's legal defense as the FBI and Biden Justice Department investigate whether he stole records covered under the Presidential Records Act or mishandled classified materials under the Espionage Act, allegations included in a search warrant released by a federal court in Florida on Friday.

The president's defense is rooted in the legal principal that the president and vice president are the ultimate declassifying authority of the U.S. government and through executive orders most recently issued in 2003 by George W. Bush and Barack Obama in 2009 that specifically exempt the president and vice president from having to follow the stringent declassification procedures every other federal agency and official must follow.

Trump has maintained for weeks that any documents still containing classified markings in his possession after he left office were previously declassified. On Friday night, the statement issued explained exactly how that declassification occurred in his mind.

The very fact that these documents were present at Mar-a-Lago means they couldn’t have been classified," the former president's office stated. "As we can all relate to, everyone ends up having to bring home their work from time to time. American presidents are no different. President Trump, in order to prepare for work the next day, often took documents including classified documents from the Oval Office to the residence.

"He had a standing order that documents removed from the Oval Office and taken into the residence were deemed to be declassified," the statement added. "The power to classify and declassify documents rests solely with the President of the United States. The idea that some paper-pushing bureaucrat, with classification authority delegated BY THE PRESIDENT, needs to approve of declassification is absurd."

Two former senior aides who worked for Trump in the latter half of his term said they were aware that Trump routinely took documents to the residence rather than return them to the Staff Secretary or the intelligence official who provided them. Asked whether there was a standing order, one former official "I don't know anyone or anything that disputes that."

August 15, 2022 1:36 PM  
Anonymous TTFers think that a county executive that 61% of his own party won't vote for is a smashing success!.... said...

Ordinarily, documents declassified by a president are later retrieved and marked declassified, usually by crossing a line through the prior classification markings. But former top aides to prior presidents acknowledged the president's power to declassify was absolute and at times resulted in instant declassification decisions.

One prior administration official related an instance where his boss, while talking to a foreign leader, gave top-secret information to the leader, declassifying simply by sharing what he had seen in a top-secret marked document. Another official related an instance he witnessed in which a president, during a meeting, received a top secret document and one official got up to leave because his clearance was only at the secret level.

"The president instantly approved that staffer to stay and consume the top-secret intelligence because it benefited the president's work at that moment," the person said.

The president's detractors in Congress, the DOJ, and the intelligence community are likely to contest the president's arguments. But officials familiar with national security law said courts generally have held the president's power to declassify is far-reaching and that the process for how that happens can be more happenstance, something the Bush and Obama executive orders from 2003 and 2009 made clear.

Obama's executive order no. 13526, issued in 2009, laid out the stringent process all federal officials and agencies needed to follow for declassification, but explicitly exempted the sitting president and vice president from having to follow those procedures.

"Information originated by the incumbent President or the incumbent Vice President; the incumbent President’s White House Staff or the incumbent Vice President’s Staff; committees, commissions, or boards appointed by the incumbent President; or other entities within the Executive Office of the President that solely advise and assist the incumbent President is exempted from the provisions of paragraph (a) of this section," the Obama order stated.

Officials said it is likely the FBI will seek to find any officials or witnesses who knew or can confirm there was a "standing order" as described by the Trump statement. But in the end, officials said the president's declassification powers were sweeping and likely would be viewed as such by the courts.

August 15, 2022 1:37 PM  
Anonymous TTFers think that a county executive that 61% of his own party won't vote for is a smashing success!.... said...

Vice President Kamala Harris decided to speak out on the FBI's unprecedented raid of former President Trump's Mar-a-Lago home in Palm Beach, Florida last week. Harris's comments mark a stark contrast from the position taken by White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, who said it would be "inappropriate" to comment on the matter.

"As a former prosecutor I will tell you, I don't speak about anybody else's case. But I have full confidence that the Department of Justice will do what the facts and the law require," Harris told the press. "Any so-called leader who engages in rhetoric that in any way suggests that law enforcement should be exposed to that kind of danger is irresponsible and can result in dangerous activities."

If the company line is we have no knowledge of this, and we're not commenting on it, why is the Vice President inserting herself and commenting on it?

Now with Karine Jean-Pierre today saying nobody in the administration should comment on this, it shows me just how fragmented this administration is. There has been this conversation that Biden and Harris are not aligned in so many ways and that there's an icy relationship there, that's exactly what I see here. Kamala Harris is looking for, as we head closer and closer to 2024, some way to make a mark because she hasn't done it in the time that she's been in office."

She's made a mark, it's just been a very bad one.

Attorney General Merrick Garland announced last week he personally authorized the search of Trump's Florida property. The White House denies any advance knowledge of the search

August 15, 2022 1:42 PM  
Anonymous homosexuality can't produce life, why would we call that a marriage? said...

The U.S. was the worst-performing of the major Group of Seven economies in the second quarter, the latest data show.

The U.K. Office of National Statistics on Friday released the G-7 comparison alongside reporting the British economy shrank by a 0.1% rate in the April-to-June period.

On the quarterly basis that most countries outside the U.S. employ, the American economy fell by 0.2% in the second quarter. Canada had the strongest showing, with its economy accelerating by 1.1%, and the Italian and French economies also grew while Germany’s stagnated.

The chart was compiled before Japan on Monday reported a 2.2% annualized, or 0.5% quarterly, growth rate for the second quarter.


The average American is shelling out an extra $717 a month because of the hottest inflation in decades, according to a new analysis.

The financial squeeze stems from the rising cost of a number of everyday goods, including cars, rent, food and health care. While the rapid pace of price increases eased slightly in July, the consumer price index still climbed 8.5% from the previous year – hovering near a painful, four-decade high, the Labor Department reported on Wednesday.

The number was calculated by comparing prices for goods and services in July versus how much households would have paid for those same items in January 2021, when inflation was 1.4%.

"While prices did not change from June to July 2022, prices increased 13.3% from January 2021 to July 2022, costing the average American household $717 in July 2022 alone," the analysis said.


July inflation was “only” 8.5% year-on-year vs. 9.1% year-on-year in June, mainly because energy prices fell on the month. In the hope that fading inflation would slow the Federal Reserve's monetary tightening, the 30-year US Treasury bond yield dropped – for about 10 minutes.

Traders decided that the light at the end of the tunnel was probably the headlamp of the oncoming express, and the 30-year bond yield snapped back.

A close look at the numbers suggests that resurgent inflation is far from under control. Rent inflation, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reckons, is rising at a 6.1% annual rate. The Zillow index of rental costs, based on actual transactions made on its website, shows 15% rental inflation as of the end of June.

The worst labor productivity decline on record during the second quarter of 2022, meanwhile, points to long-term and persistent inflation. Output per manhour in the nonfarm business sector declined by 2.2% at an annual rate. Think of it as the economic equivalent of long Covid.

We haven't seen labor productivity declines of this magnitude since the 1970s, during the last great wave of inflation.

August 15, 2022 1:53 PM  
Anonymous just listen to them whistles blowin'.... said...

More than a dozen FBI whistleblowers have come forward to investigators in Congress, according to Rep. Jim Jordan.

The congressman, who is the ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee, said the number has risen to 14 after the FBI raid at Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort.

During a conversation about alleged politicization at the Justice Department, along with former Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe, Jordan made the case that the public has "figured it out" when it comes to what he characterized as the Left generating a lie, the "Big Media" reporting the lie, Big Tech amplifying the lie, and then both piling on Republicans when they catch on and say something. He said there are agents in the bureau who have realized the same.

"Fourteen FBI agents have come to our office as whistleblowers, and they are good people," Jordan said. "There are lots of good people in the FBI. It's the top that is the problem. Some of these good agents are coming to us, telling us what is baloney, what’s going on — the political nature now of the Justice Department — God bless them for doing it — talking about the school board issue, about a whole host of issues."

This would appear to be quite a bump from a little more than two months ago, when Jordan told said that, in total, six FBI officials have approached the committee, two related to a controversy surrounding a school boards memo and four related to Jan. 6. At the time, in early June, Jordan sent a letter to FBI Director Christopher Wray warning that multiple former FBI officials were coming forward with information suggesting the bureau was "purging" employees with conservative viewpoints.

On the Senate side, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) has disclosed his team received whistleblower disclosures, including disclosures related to the federal investigation into Hunter Biden.

"It is becoming a well-worn trail of agents who say, 'This has got to stop.' And thank goodness for them," Jordan said on Sunday. He also expressed the view that voters will vote in a Republican majority in Congress, allowing the GOP more power to carry out a bevy of investigations

August 15, 2022 2:29 PM  
Anonymous Slidin' Biden is making inflation great again !!!!!!!!!!.......... said...

The frantic and deadly U.S. evacuation from Afghanistan was so disorganized that 1,450 children were evacuated without their parents, and senior leaders in Vice President Kamala Harris’ and first lady Jill Biden’s offices, as well as one of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, asked private veteran groups for assistance evacuating certain people from the country.

In the waning days of the evacuation, more than 1,000 women and girls waited more than 24 hours on dozens of buses, desperately circling the Kabul airport and trying to avoid Taliban checkpoints. Many of them were told multiple times they were not allowed to enter the airport. Now, nearly a year since the Taliban took control of the country, fewer than one-third of them have managed to flee the country.

These are just some of the findings in a new report by the House Foreign Affairs Committee one year after the Taliban swept into the Afghan capital of Kabul, almost instantly rolling back more than two decades of U.S. and NATO military support and nation-building efforts.

More broadly, the report asserts President Biden and top officials in his administration repeatedly – and perhaps intentionally – misled the American people when they said the fall of Kabul came as a surprise and there was no alternative other than depending on the Taliban for security in the Afghan capital as the U.S. military evacuated hastily.

The report asserts that the chaotic withdrawal that left more than 800 American citizens stranded in the country was completely avoidable if Biden and his national security team had listened to the warnings and advice of military leaders, U.S. diplomatic officials operating on the ground, and international allies.

It adds that one of the most tragic outcomes of the evacuation – the death of 13 U.S. servicemembers and 160 Afghans in a suicide bombing at the Kabul airport – could have been prevented if the administration had accepted the Taliban’s Aug. 15 offer for the U.S. to control the capital city’s security until the end of the withdrawal.

Such an arrangement would have allowed American forces to extend the airport’s security perimeter, creating more space for evacuating Afghans and a far more orderly process. It also would have prevented U.S. servicemembers from being penned in amid the frantic crush of Afghans desperately trying to board U.S. military planes, leaving them vulnerable to the suicide attack, several former officials told the committee, according to the report.

“There were many sins if you will – there was a complete lack of and failure to plan,” Rep. Mike McCaul told CBS News’ Face the Nation Sunday. “There was no plan executed.”

August 15, 2022 2:35 PM  
Anonymous Kamala's ancestors owned slaves: will she pay reparations? said...

For over a year, we've heard Democrats wailing about existential threats to "democracy!" Curiously, this has happened while these same Democrats in Congress have worked hand-in-glove with their fellow Democrats in the Justice Department to disregard all norms to hunt down and attempt to destroy President Joe Biden's chief political rival, former President Donald Trump, as well as Trump's top aides and even his political supporters.

Last Monday, the Biden Justice Department crossed a red line by ordering an unprecedented, unnecessary, and unlawful FBI raid of Trump's home and offices in Mar-a-Lago. The purported purpose of the highly controversial home raid with a brigade of 30 FBI agents—a raid Attorney General Merrick Garland admitted he personally ordered after his aides initially denied it—is related to 15 to 25 boxes of presidential records, some of which bureaucrats at the National Archives claim are classified and which Trump took to Mar-a-Lago when he left the White House over 18 months ago.

All presidents take mementos and other records when they leave office. They don't pack their own boxes. The National Archives takes the position that almost everything is a "presidential record." And the federal government, in general, over-classifies almost everything.

Even if Trump took classified records, that isn't a crime. The president has the inherent constitutional power to declassify any record he wants, in any manner he wants, regardless of any otherwise-pertinent statute or regulation that applies to everyone else. The president does not need to obtain Congress' or a bureaucrat's permission—or jump through their regulatory or statutory hoops—to declassify anything. The Supreme Court reaffirmed this in the 1988 case, Department of the Navy v. Egan : "The President, after all, is the 'Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States.' U.S. Const., Art. II, § 2. His authority to classify and control access to information bearing on national security...flows primarily from this constitutional investment of power in the President, and exists quite apart from any explicit congressional grant."

Thus, if Trump left the White House with classified records, then those records are necessarily declassified by his very actions. He doesn't need to label that decision for, or report that decision to, any bureaucrat who works for him. It is pretextual legal nonsense for the Biden Justice Department to pretend Trump broke any criminal statute. Indeed, it is noteworthy that Attorney General Garland apparently did not seek an opinion from the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel (OLC)—the de facto general counsel for the executive branch—before ordering this home raid of his boss's chief political enemy. Perhaps Garland knew OLC wouldn't give him the answer he wanted.

August 15, 2022 10:57 PM  
Anonymous Kamala's ancestors owned slaves: will she pay reparations? said...

In 2012, former President Barack Obama secretly told the Russian president he'd have "more flexibility" to negotiate with Russia after the 2012 presidential election. To convey that message is to clearly transmit highly classified information. So why not an Espionage Act violation? Well, because Obama was the president—period.

All former presidents also get a federally funded office, called the Office of the Former President. They get lawyers and other staff, security clearances, Secret Service protection, and secure facilities (SCIFs) for the maintenance of classified records. Even if Trump had classified records, then, they were protected and secure.

At best, then, this amounts to a dispute over the Presidential Records Act. If the boxes sought by DOJ contain presidential records, then the National Archives "owns" them—but they'll almost certainly stay with Trump in his eventual presidential library.

That's the bureaucratic dispute. That's it. This is not any crime (the Presidential Records Act is not a criminal statute), let alone one requiring a 30-person FBI brigade and unprecedented raid of a former president's home and office.

It is routine for any Office of the Former President to negotiate with the National Archives. The Archives could have also alerted Congress. The Biden Justice Department could have filed a civil lawsuit. Or the Biden Justice Department could have sought more subpoenas. Instead, DOJ went nuclear, with its unprecedented, unnecessary, and unlawful home raid—even knowing Trump had already been holding these records at Mar-a-Lago for 18 months. So why now?

To put this in perspective, former President Bill Clinton stole more than $190,000 in china, flatware, rugs, sofas, and other personal gifts from the White House. The Clintons eventually caved to public pressure and paid $86,000 for the items. There was no FBI raid.

Then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton set up an illegal home server containing some of our nation's most classified records. She openly admitted to stealing and destroying records herself, putting our national security at risk. There was no FBI raid. In fact, the FBI never even questioned her.

To add insult to injury, the Biden Justice Department obtained this unprecedented, unnecessary, and unlawful home raid warrant from U.S. Magistrate Judge Bruce Reinhart of West Palm Beach. Reinhart had just recently recused himself on June 22, 2022, in Trump's civil lawsuit against Hillary Clinton. What's more, in 2017, Reinhart blasted Trump's integrity on Facebook: "Donald Trump doesn't have the moral stature to kiss John Lewis's feet." So, what changed over the last two months to make Reinhart's clear judicial bias (somehow) go away?

FBI Director Christopher Wray recently testified that the FBI was too busy to stop dangerous and illegal intimidation campaigns outside Supreme Court justices' homes. This was after an attempted assassin was thankfully arrested outside Justice Brett Kavanaugh's home. The FBI apparently didn't have the time to investigate actual threats to the lives of constitutional officers, but it had plenty of time to raid the home of a former president over an 18-month-old records dispute—with which Trump publicly stated he was fully cooperating

August 15, 2022 10:58 PM  
Anonymous homosexual marriage is an inherently sado-masochistic arrangement that should be discouraged by any civilized society said...

Last week, federal agents launched an unprecedented raid on former President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate. The warrant, signed by Attorney General Merrick Garland, demanded the seizure of virtually any document created during his four years in office. To many observers, it reeks of a fishing expedition, which, as Democrat election lawyer Marc Elias said, will likely force Trump to litigate this sorry affair while campaigining in 2024. That, it seems, is the point.

It escaped the notice of few that two days after the raid, Hunter Biden skipped aboard Air Force One with his father for a flight to a family vacation on Kiawah Island, South Carolina, considered the "Hamptons of the South." The President's son remains unmolested by federal law enforcement, although he is currently under federal investigation for tax fraud, money laundering, and unregistered lobbying. We now know that Biden père has played a role in several of his son's shady business dealings.

"No one is above the law," Trump's critics say—except, of course, those who are.

This discrepancy in the application of the law is an example of what political theorist Samuel T. Francis coined "anarcho-tyranny" in a 1994 column for Chronicles magazine, referring to "essentially a kind of Hegelian synthesis of what appear to be dialectical opposites: the combination of oppressive government power against the innocent and the law-abiding and, simultaneously, a grotesque paralysis of the ability or the will to use that power to carry out basic public duties such as protection or public safety." It's an apt description for what's happening in the U.S. these days. Today's anarcho-tyranny expresses itself in the Biden administration's penchant for selectively enforcing law and order: punishing people for the same or similar offenses differently based on their relationship to the powers that be.

Americans became intimately familiar with the concept in its strict sense after the death of George Floyd triggered the Black Lives Matter riots. Although they proved the most destructive and costliest violent demonstrations in recent American history, an analysis by The Guardian found that the "vast majority of citations and charges against George Floyd protesters were ultimately dropped, dismissed or otherwise not filed."

There is something to be said about Mar-a-Lago being raided under the pretext of a Presidential Records Act violation by the same FBI that kneeled in solidarity with Black Lives Matter near the National Archives as flames engulfed Washington.

August 16, 2022 6:48 AM  
Anonymous homosexual marriage is an inherently sado-masochistic arrangement that should be discouraged by any civilized society said...

Americans were similarly treated to the outlines of anarcho-tyranny when FBI Director Chris Wray announced that the violent mask-wearing thugs known as "Antifa" do not constitute a terrorist organization but a disembodied ideology. Meanwhile, whistleblowers revealed the FBI's Counterterrorism Division created a "threat tag" to monitor investigations into parents who attended school board meetings to oppose vaccine and mask mandates. Parents exercising their First Amendment rights are apparently a greater threat to federal law enforcement than militant anarchists at this point.

The question, then, is why? Under anarcho-tyranny in all its forms, an issue is presented to the public not merely as a problem but as a crisis that necessitates the regime to assume extraordinary powers in response. The regime, Francis writes, "exploits that problem as an instrument by which it continues to enhance its power, though neither the fake problem it exploits nor the real problem that exists is affected."

Official declarations of racism as a "public health crisis" like those that followed the Black Lives Matter riots, provide pretexts for radical redesigns of society that invariably empower the managers who oversee top-down change. Meanwhile, law enforcement shifts from targeting criminals to innocents.

Thus, as crime rates rise and police retreat from the streets, the Internal Revenue Service moves to hire 87,000 new agents, including special officers who will carry firearms and "be willing to use deadly force."

Likewise, if the real problem were corruption among politicians, then most of Congress and every living commander-in-chief, except for perhaps peanut farmer Jimmy Carter, would be enjoying the Caribbean clime of Guantanamo Bay at this moment. But if Trump is arrested and indicted, the problem of political corruption won't go away. It will, however, establish a precedent that it is perfectly legitimate for the regime to prevent a candidate viewed as threatening to the established political order from running for president by any means necessary

August 16, 2022 6:48 AM  
Anonymous Conservatives showing that they are no longer interested in democracy said...

"But there is more at stake than the health of the Republican Party when its core activists, as well as a growing number of officials and those campaigning for governmental positions, openly espouse hostility not just to democratic principles but, increasingly, to the word “democracy” itself. It has long been a talking point on the right — from a chant at the 1964 Republican convention where Goldwater became the G.O.P. nominee to a set of tweets in 2020 by Senator Mike Lee of Utah — that the United States is a republic, not a democracy. The idea, embodied by the Electoral College’s primacy over the popular vote in presidential elections, is that the founders specifically rejected direct popular sovereignty in favor of a representative system in which the governing authorities are states and districts, not individual voters. But until very recently, democracy has been championed on the right: President George W. Bush, a subject of two books I’ve written, famously promoted democracy worldwide (albeit through military aggression that arguably undermined his cause). For that matter, in Trump’s speech at the rally on Jan. 6, he invoked the word “democracy” no fewer than four times, framing the attempt to overturn the 2020 election as a last-ditch effort to “save our democracy.”

What is different now is the use of “democracy” as a kind of shorthand and even a slur for Democrats themselves, for the left and all the positions espoused by the left, for hordes of would-be but surely unqualified or even illegal voters who are fundamentally anti-American and must be opposed and stopped at all costs. That anti-democracy and anti-“democracy” sentiment, repeatedly voiced over the course of my travels through Arizona, is distinct from anything I have encountered in over two decades of covering conservative politics.

It’s the failure to reinstall a legitimately defeated president, under the misguided belief that victory was stolen from him, that seems to have ushered in the view among Arizona Republicans — and many more across the nation — that democracy itself was at fault and had been weaponized by the political left, or the “enemies from within,” as McCarthy once put it. As it happened, Rose Sperry wasn’t the first person to invoke the Wisconsin senator at the Lions of Liberty event. “I had a weird dream last night about Joseph McCarthy,” said one of the morning’s featured speakers, Jim Arroyo, the head of Arizona’s biggest chapter of the Oath Keepers, a far-right paramilitary group made up largely of current and former members of the armed forces and law enforcement. McCarthy, he said, “was not only right — he understated the seriousness of it...”

Arroyo’s eschatological rhetoric was echoed by the down-ballot Republican candidates who spoke to the group. One of them was Selina Bliss, a precinct committeewoman and nursing teacher at Yavapai College who was running for a State House seat. (On Aug. 2, she was defeated by the G.O.P. incumbent, Quang Nguyen, who earlier this year authored legislation, later signed into law, requiring that Arizona high school students receive anti-Communist civics instruction.) Bliss reminded her friends and neighbors that they belonged to a thriving activist movement: “We Republicans, we conservatives, we’re the grass roots, we come from the bottom up.”

"It once would have been jarring to hear a candidate for state legislative office ignore the usual parochial issues — property taxes, water access, state funding for universities — and instead repudiate the very idea of democracy in America. But Bliss’s view was hardly out of place here. Sperry, the activist sitting in the audience, had posted on Facebook a few months before: “Please strike the word democracy from your vocabulary! WE ARE A REPUBLIC!!!”

Entire article is at link above.

August 16, 2022 10:09 AM  
Anonymous USA Today: Trump Organization CFO Allen Weisselberg expected to plead guilty in NY tax case said...

NEW YORK — Donald Trump's longtime finance chief is expected to plead guilty as soon as Thursday in a tax evasion case that is the only criminal prosecution to arise from a long-running investigation into the former president's company, three people familiar with the matter told The Associated Press.

Trump Organization CFO Allen Weisselberg was scheduled to be tried in October on allegations he took more than $1.7 million in off-the-books compensation from the company, including rent, car payments and school tuition.

Prosecutors in the Manhattan district attorney's office and Weisselberg's lawyers met Monday with the judge overseeing the case, Juan Manuel Merchan, according to court records. The judge then scheduled a hearing in the matter for 9 a.m. Thursday but did not specify the reason.

The people who spoke to the AP did so on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly about the case. They said the purpose of Thursday's hearing was for Weisselberg to enter a guilty plea, but cautioned that plea deals sometimes fall apart before they are finalized in court.

Weisselberg's lawyer, Nicholas Gravante Jr., told The New York Times on Monday that Weisselberg has been engaged in plea negotiations to resolve the case, but did not specify terms of a potential plea deal. Reached by the AP, Gravante declined to comment.

The Times, citing two people with knowledge of the matter, said Weisselberg was expected to receive a five-month jail sentence, which would make him eligible for release after about 100 days. The deal would not require Weisselberg to testify or cooperate in any way with an ongoing criminal investigation into Trump's business practices.

Trump's company, the Trump Organization, is also charged in the case but did not appear to be involved in the plea agreement talks. Weisselberg and the Trump Organization have pleaded not guilty.

The Manhattan district attorney's office declined comment. A message seeking comment was left with a lawyer for the Trump Organization.

August 16, 2022 11:39 AM  
Anonymous Conservatives sounding more like the Taliban said...

Democratic U.S. Rep. Eric Swalwell of California posted audio of a violent death threat against him and his family, with the speaker calling for "all Democrats" to be killed and ending with a call for "Trump 2024."

Swalwell, married with three children, is a popular target for the right. The California Democrat is a former candidate for president, a visible member of the Democratic Party, and is co-chair of the House Democratic Steering Committee.

In the audio, a male voice can be heard hoping for decapitations of the Congressman, his wife, and their children. The language is graphic.

"I want to say, not me, but I hope someone cuts [his] throat from ear to ear," the voice quips. "Cut his wife's head off, cut his kids' head off."

"You still banging the Chinese spy Fang Fang?" the voice adds. "We’re coming to your house this weekend. Gon’ get you and them little mutant bastards, them little mutant offspring of yours. We’re gon’ get ya.”

The voice also references President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, using horrifically racist slurs, along with Back Lives Matter, immigrants, and Democrats in general.

It also attacks the state of California and Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom, and then Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer.

It ends with a repeated call of "Trump 2024!"

"Listen to this death threat against my children," Swalwell wrote, posting the audio on Twitter. "Since the FBI search of Mar-a-Lago, Trump, McCarthy, and MAGA Republicans are stoking violent rhetoric against lawmakers and law enforcement. Someone is going to get killed."

In 2019, Swalwell also posted a death threat he received. Fox News' Tomi Lahren mocked him on social media.

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) questioned the veracity of the audio, saying there was “no way that happened.”

“Because we all know good Trump supporting fathers would say, “that’s the Democrat who had sex with a Chinese spy,” she tweeted.

August 16, 2022 12:47 PM  
Anonymous when will Slidin' Biden retire?... said...

Three passports, Privileged documents. A file on a presidential pardon. As evidence surfaces about what FBI agents seized during the raid of former President Donald Trump's estate in Mar-a-Lago, new questions about the real focus of the investigation and new avenues for legal challenges are bubbling to the surface.

The Justice Department informed Trump's team Monday that agents gathered the former president's passports and are obligated to return them, and that officials are also reviewing seized materials that may be covered by various privileges.

Kevin Brock, who served as FBI assistant director for intelligence under former Director Robert Mueller, said the new revelations raise legitimate questions about over-collection of evidence that could lead to significant legal challenges. Trump lawyers are weighing whether to ask a federal court to name a special master to review sensitive documents and protect the president's 4th amendment, executive and attorney-client privileges.

"Trump's attorneys could have a runway to argue the scope of the search is overly broad," Brock said. "Search warrants normally require a level of specificity that seems to be missing in this warrant. Specificity is important in order to protect 4th Amendment rights from exuberant government overreach designed to find whatever they can."

Brock said he was particularly troubled FBI agents felt comfortable seizing a record of Trump's pardon of longtime friend Roger Stone, which the bureau disclosed in court documents. He said it suggested the raid may have something more to do with the Jan. 6 Capitol riot probe, where Stone has been a figure of interest, than an investigation into classified records.

"The president’s authority to grant pardon and clemency is clear but what isn’t clear is why the retention of a clemency order would be considered illegal," Brock said "The fact that it is highlighted on the receipt list, and that it has to do with Stone, will likely provide ammunition to Republicans who are asserting that the search was less about a document dispute and more about a hunt for derogatory Jan. 6 information."

The revelations came on a day when DOJ also opposed requests to unseal the FBI affidavit explaining the motive for the search, arguing such a move could imperil this and other investigations.

Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton, whose conservative watchdog regularly sues the government to release documents and is seeking to compel release of documents in the Trump search, said the government's first court filings appear to describe an overly broad search that went far beyond classified records.

"They were engaged in a fishing expedition, and the warrant itself wasn’t about classified information, though it mentioned it," Fitton said. "It talked about all sort of other documents. It basically gave the FBI carte blanche to anything they wanted from the Trump home.

"And the fact that a judge signed off on it is very troubling," he added.

August 16, 2022 1:53 PM  
Anonymous Trump is giving the FBI the January 6 treatment said...

Donald Trump has expressed many emotions about his actions inciting an insurrection on the Capitol on January 6, but as witnesses, both public and private, can attest, not a single one of them was remorse. Mostly, he appears to feel pride in the power he has over his followers. His former press secretary, Stephanie Grisham, described Trump on the day of the riot as "gleefully watching on his TV as he often did, 'look at all of the people fighting for me,' hitting rewind, watching it again." During her public testimony about January 6, former White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson said Trump was so amped up that he demanded the Secret Service take him to the Capitol to lead the mob. A now-retired police officer who was part of Trump's motorcade that day confirmed the report. Even video footage from the day after the riot shows Trump reluctantly suppressing his pride, no doubt at the advice of legal counsel.

Since then, Trump has toggled between feigned disapproval and open gloating about January 6, even though it did not accomplish his goal of blocking Joe Biden from the White House. He's flirted with pardoning the rioters if he ever regains the White House. He's tried to make a martyr of Ashli Babbitt, the Trump supporter who was shot during the riot when she tried to lead a mob toward fleeing members of Congress. When asked about the "hang Mike Pence" chants at the riot, which were a direct reaction to his provocations, Trump defended the rioters as "very angry."

Because of this, no one should be surprised that Trump is now reacting to a man attacking the FBI offices in Cincinnati by doubling down on his inciting rhetoric. After FBI agents searched Trump's Palm Beach resort, Mar-a-Lago, for classified documents, Trump has been using every avenue possible to send a message to the Department of Justice: Stop the investigation or my supporters could become even more dangerous.

On Saturday, the New York Times reported that Trump "reached out to a Justice Department official to pass along a message" to Attorney General Merrick Garland. "The message Mr. Trump wanted conveyed, according to a person familiar with the exchange, was: 'The country is on fire. What can I do to reduce the heat?'"

The message is disguised as helpful, but it's obviously meant to be threatening. It's a variation on the cliched mobster threat: "Nice place you've got there. Shame if something happened to it." Both Trump and the intended target understand that Trump is the one who lit the fire with his repeated claims of being "persecuted" and the flat-out lies he uses to bolster those claims. So his "question" is really more a form of blackmail. He's not actually offering assistance, so much as trying to remind Garland of his continued power over his followers.

The threatening nature of this rhetoric was underscored by Trump's game-playing with the warrant release. First, he pretended not to have the warrant and demanded that it be released, even though he did have a copy and could release it whenever he wished. Then his team released the warrant to Breitbart before the DOJ had a chance to release it. By doing so, Trump made sure the version of the warrant that spread most rapidly was one featuring the unredacted names of the individual FBI agents involved in the search, putting them and their families in danger.

August 16, 2022 2:40 PM  
Anonymous Trump is giving the FBI the January 6 treatment said...

In case there was any doubt that this was intentional, Trump is playing the same game with the affidavit that led to the warrant.

The DOJ is resisting the public release of the affidavit underlying the search warrant, which has much more detailed information about what crimes Trump is suspected of and the evidence the FBI has to support their suspicions. Its release would not only be highly unusual, but it would also "likely chill future cooperation by witnesses," authorities argued. Trump responded with a rant on Truth Social, his far-right alternative to Twitter, in which he demanded "the immediate release of the completely Unredacted Affidavit." As with the warrant release, the only purpose of releasing an unredacted affidavit would be to expose the identities of people who have provided evidence against Trump.

Monday morning, Trump made his veiled threats to Garland public, going to Fox News to engage in faux-handwringing over how the "country is in a very dangerous position," as if he weren't the person who made it that way.

"There is tremendous anger, like I've never seen before, over all of the scams, and this new one—years of scams and witch hunts, and now this," he said. "If there is anything we can do to help, I, and my people, would certainly be willing to do that."

Trump, of course, is actually the one turning up the heat. By making false accusations of "scams," Trump reframes his threatening behavior as reluctant self-defense. In reality, however, he is not the victim here, there is no scam, and he is under no obligation to rile up his most violent supporters with conspiracy theories and lies. In other words, his comment was another spin on the same insinuations: Nice country you've got there. Shame if something would happen to it.

As Eric Kleefeld of Media Matters reported Monday, Fox News has been heavily hyping "Trump's veiled threats that his supporters will carry out more political violence against federal law enforcement." As Kleefeld notes, Trump is using the passive language of faux "predictions" to package his threat, by saying things like, "the temperature has to be brought down in the country. If it isn't, terrible things are going to happen." But, of course, he and his targets both know things aren't just "happening." They are being provoked by Trump's hyperbolic language and hint-dropping to his followers.

January 6 committee member Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill., called Trump out Monday on CNN, calling Trump's messaging to supporters "creepy."

"It does strike me as something like, you know, what you hear from the mafia. 'If you want your store to be secure, give us money,'" he added.

August 16, 2022 2:41 PM  
Anonymous Trump is giving the FBI the January 6 treatment said...

Everyone saw on January 6 how Trump's rhetoric works. He doesn't need to explicitly call for violence. He insinuates. He winks. He nudges. His audience understands exactly what he's getting at, and, all too often they act. On January 6, when Trump said to "march" on the Capitol, the crowd knew exactly what he was insinuating. What he's hinting at now, with his "predictions" of "terrible things," is even less subtle. Coupled with his insistence on making public the names of any FBI agents who are investigating him or people who have testified against him, his implications of violence are undeniable.

While the veiled threats are certainly affecting some pundits, who are publicly entertaining the idea that the FBI should give in to intimidation, it's unlikely that it's going to work. It didn't on January 6, even though Trump was quite effective that day at unleashing a mob on the Capitol to stop the election certification. As media researchers Jared Holt and Emmi Conley explained on Holt's podcast this week, it's even more unlikely to work now. There's a lack of a concrete target for Trump's minions to focus their rage on, they point out, plus some of the most effective far-right ringleaders are too busy being prosecuted to organize another attack.

The pathos of the attack from Ricky Shiffer — who shot at a Cincinnati FBI office with a nail gun, before dying in a cornfield after a lengthy standoff with police — illustrates the current logistical problems with Trump's threatening approach. Still, that Trump continues to work this strategy is alarming evidence that January 6 is not firmly ensconced in the past. Trump has not abandoned his violence-centric approach to getting what he wants, regardless of what it costs the country or his followers.

August 16, 2022 2:42 PM  
Anonymous TTF: teaching tomfoolery said...

If the Federal Bureau of Investigation is going to be roving the countryside looking for presidential documents, then Barack Obama’s residence must be next. By now, you all know about the federal raid on Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home, executed under the pretense of document retrieval. The FBI deployed many agents to find documents for the National Archives. The political class doesn’t want Trump to run again, and they used their allies at the Department of Justice to deliver that warning. Agents broke into the safe, manhandled Melania Trump’s clothing, and absconded with boxes of supposed documents meant for preservation, but reportedly barred Trump’s lawyers from overseeing the search.

All of this over some reported missing records—it’s just waggish that the feds would think we, the American people, would buy this narrative. I don’t think even the staunchest Trump hater even believes this line, with their main criticism being just that—the cover story isn’t plausible. It’s not, but let’s have some fun with this game. If federal agents are roving nationwide to ensure the National Archives is content, then Obama’s house must be ransacked next because the issue tracking all his documents stems back to 2018. Troves of Obama files went missing—vanished into the ether. Real Clear Politics around this time reported on the lost files, with Hillary Clinton’s email fiasco via her private homebrew server again being mentioned (via RCP):

In the middle of directing the difficult task of transferring the historically important records of the Obama administration into the National Archives, the archivist in charge, David Ferriero, ran into a serious problem: A lot of key records are missing.

A first-rate librarian, Ferriero has been driving a much-needed digital overhaul and expansion of the National Archives over the nine years of his appointment. This will greatly improve the ability of digital search locally and remotely, as well as accessing the files themselves.

To support this effort, in 2014 President Obama signed the Presidential and Federal Records Act Amendments. For the first time electronic government records were placed under the 1950 Federal Records Act. The new law also included updates clarifying "the responsibilities of federal government officials when using non-government email systems" and empowering "the National Archives to safeguard original and classified records from unauthorized removal.” Additionally, it gives the Archivist of the United States the final authority in determining just what is a government record.

August 17, 2022 6:27 AM  
Anonymous Trump’s Republican Defenders Inexplicably Forgot To Expect the Worst said...

When news broke last week that the FBI had searched former President Donald Trump’s residence and offices at Mar-a-Lago, South Carolina Senator Tim Scott reacted with concerned caution. “We need to let this play out and see exactly what happens,” he said in a CBS News interview. “But we should have been stunned and surprised and shocked with what happened yesterday.”

Scott’s measured reaction was the exception and not the rule. Most Republican officials responded to the search with threats to open investigations of their own into Attorney General Merrick Garland and the FBI, with calls to defund the FBI and retaliate against federal agents, and with freewheeling claims that the United States had become, in their words, a banana republic, a Third-World dictatorship, or some other kind of foreign autocracy.

The knee-jerk reactions looked bad in real time, as I noted last week. They look even worse now. And they represent a surprising departure from what had once been a time-tested series of responses for whenever Trump did or said something boorish, authoritarian, or outright bigoted: Don’t be the first to rush to his defense. This was the time tested means by which Republican electeds dealt with Trump’s firehose of controversy throughout his time in office: “Sorry, no, I didn’t see the tweet you’re talking about.”

As Election Day neared in November 2020, for instance, it looked possible and even likely from polls and early-voting counts that Trump would not win reelection. The former president suggested that he wouldn’t concede the election if he lost, would file legal challenges if he disagreed with the margins, and wanted to stop states from counting mail-in ballots after Election Night. “We’re going in the night of—as soon as the election is over—we’re going in with our lawyers,” he told reporters at one point.

Trump’s reasons were transparently self-serving. Thanks to his own misinformation campaign about voting by mail, those who relied on it tended to be considerably more likely to vote for then-candidate Joe Biden. This led to a predicted and semi-observed phenomenon known as the “red mirage” and the “blue shift”: in-person votes that trended Republican would be counted first, while absentee votes that trended Democratic would be counted later. This would not be a problem in a healthy democracy where leaders expressed confidence in the democratic process. For a party that had spent years gorging itself on voter-fraud myths and chosen a would-be autocrat as its leader, it was a recipe for disaster.

For most elected Republicans—or at least those who weren’t actively part of Trump’s pre-January 6 schemes—his efforts to undermine American democracy were something to ignore. “It’s not new for Trump’s party brethren to duck and cover when he says something troubling,” Politico noted at the time. “But after five years of perfecting the art of explaining how they ‘didn’t see the tweet’—the much parodied talking point to which Republicans on Capitol Hill often resort—it is shocking but not surprising that they aren’t speaking up now, even when the integrity of America’s electoral system is under attack by their party’s leader.”

August 17, 2022 6:51 AM  
Anonymous Trump’s Republican Defenders Inexplicably Forgot To Expect the Worst said...

There were a few instances where some leading Republicans expressed mild criticism of Trump. Only after January 6, when he sent a mob to attack Congress, some top GOP lawmakers did condemn him. (It didn’t last long in most cases: McConnell famously denounced Trump for his role in the insurrection and then voted to acquit him for incitement of insurrection during the impeachment trial a few weeks later.) His infamous Helsinki summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin and his corrosive remarks after the white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia drew above-average levels of Republican consternation.

But those few moments stood out mainly because they occurred against a backdrop of acquiescence and silence by top Republicans. When Trump wrote on Twitter in 2019 that four Democratic lawmakers—all of whom were women of color—were “people who hate America” who should “go back” to where they came from, it drew a flurry of condemnation from the left and mostly chirping crickets from the right. “The reality is I want to shift back to the issues and the America they represent versus the America that I want to see,” North Carolina Senator Thom Tillis, who was up for reelection at the time, said while brushing off requests from reporters to weigh in on the president’s remarks.

This inclination to avoid commenting was strategic on two levels. For one, many Republicans apparently considered it unwise to criticize Trump lest they become victims of his wrath, as many other anti-Trump Republicans became over the four years of his presidency. As for defending Trump when they agreed with him, there was another strong point in favor of keeping silent: He might inflame things even further and place any Republicans who had defended him in an even more uncomfortable spot.

Since the search of Mar-a-Lago, reports emerged that some of the classified materials pertained to the nuclear secrets of either the U.S. or other countries, which are among the most sensitive secrets held by the federal government. (The exact nature of these reported secrets hasn’t been made public and may never be.) Multiple news outlets also reported that the search was far from spontaneous: Government officials had already spent months quietly trying to recover classified documents and other official records before resorting to a search warrant. Trump and his lawyers, for some inexplicable reason, apparently held some back.

Some of Trump’s more fervent allies fell back to wilder assertions to defend him. Trump had a standing order to declassify anything that went into his personal residence! (That’s not how it works.) The FBI may have tried to plant evidence! (Astonishingly unlikely.) There was a spy or a traitor inside Mar-a-Lago! (Trump loyalists are free to spend as much time as they want accusing each other of betrayal.) One Fox News host even approvingly cited Richard Nixon’s infamous claim that if the president does it, then it’s not illegal. That is not a sign that things are going well for you, to say the least. When it comes to a certain segment of Trumpworld, the last 96 hours felt like watching someone try to swim while wearing a tuxedo.

Over the weekend, however, leading Republicans have remembered their best practices and have started to fall curiously silent—a modified, limited hangback, if you please. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, who threatened to investigate Garland if the GOP retakes the House in the fall, has returned to tweeting about inflation and Afghanistan. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell kept himself at a similar arms-length approach. Perhaps they and their colleagues have relearned a maxim that the writer Tom Scocca first proffered on Twitter in 2016 at the dawn of the Trump era. “Nothing about Trump has ever looked kinda bad at first but turned out OK,” Scocca wrote. “He’s always worse than you thought.”

August 17, 2022 6:51 AM  
Anonymous TTFers think that a county executive that 61% of his own party won't vote for is a smashing success!.... said...

Rep. Liz Cheney was defeated Tuesday night in the Republican primary for Wyoming's at-large Congressional District. Her loss means only two of the 10 House Republicans who voted to impeach former President Donald Trump over the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol have survived their ludicrous vote.

Cheney said she will continue to do everything she can to make sure Trump can never be President again. She apparently doesn't trust voters with the decision. She's never had much faith in democracy....

"There were a few instances where some leading Republicans expressed mild criticism of Trump. Only after January 6, when he sent a mob to attack Congress,"

there is actually no evidence he asked anyone to "attack" Congress

his rhetoric was pretty offensive but, as usual, Dems badly overplayed their hand to the extent that prudent people need to separate themselves from Dem rhetoric

and, of course, the suspension of voter integrity rules because of pandemic concerns, made it hard to argue against Trump's allegations

while there is indeed no evidence of widespread fraud, there is also no evidence it didn't happen

and Dems have tried hard to make these temporary measures permanent

undermining our voting process in perpetuity

"McConnell voted to acquit him for incitement of insurrection during the impeachment trial a few weeks later"

it was the right vote

there was no evidence to justify such a charge

"his corrosive remarks after the white supremacist rally in Charlottesville"

his remarks after the Charlottesville rally have been mischaracterized shamelessly by Dems and the MSM

"many Republicans apparently considered it unwise to criticize Trump lest they become victims of his wrath"

actually, he doesn't hold office but Dems would dearly like the election in 2022 to be about Trump instead of their record

why should Republicans play into Dems' desperate game plan?

"Since the search of Mar-a-Lago, reports emerged that some of the classified materials pertained to the nuclear secrets of either the U.S. or other countries, which are among the most sensitive secrets held by the federal government. (The exact nature of these reported secrets hasn’t been made public and may never be.)"

that's convenient

that way you can make up things that can never be proven false or true

what would these "nuclear secrets" be that the media is throwing against the wall?

clearly the technology is already widely understood

August 17, 2022 10:33 AM  
Anonymous No surprise U.S. can't fill poll worker jobs after threats from 2020 election deniers said...

"while there is indeed no evidence of widespread fraud, there is also no evidence it didn't happen"

Yeah, maybe that Italian satellite worked --- is that what you're getting at?

Some of Trump's idiot attorneys and his Chief of Staff actually pushed this bullshit.

"...during Trump's last weeks in office, his chief of staff Mark Meadows tried to persuade the Department of Justice to investigate these claims. Meadows emailed Rosen a link to a YouTube video about the claims; Rosen forwarded the email to his deputy Richard Donoghue, who responded it was "pure insanity""

All you spout is trollish willful ignorance.

USA Today: By the numbers: President Donald Trump's failed efforts to overturn the election

August 17, 2022 12:21 PM  
Anonymous Liz Cheney said...

We really are in God's country. And it's wonderful to welcome so many here. I want to say first of all, a special thanks to every member of Team Cheney, who is here in the audience, and to tell you our work is far from over.

Among the many, many blessings that we have as Americans, and as individuals and as human beings, the blessing of your family is surely the most important. And so I want to thank all my family and pay a special tribute to those who are here with us tonight. My mom and dad, Dick and Lynne Cheney, and my husband Phil, and four of our five kids are here—Katie and Gracie and Philip and Richard are all here tonight. Elizabeth is starting law school today, so we'll have another generation carrying on dedication to the Constitution and to our freedom.

A little over a year ago, I received a note from a Gold Star father. He said to me, 'Standing up for truth honors all who gave all,' and I have thought of his words every single day since then. I've thought of them because they are a reminder of how we must all conduct ourselves. We must conduct ourselves in a way that is worthy of the men and women who wear the uniform of this nation. And in particular, of those who have given the ultimate sacrifice.

This is not a game. Every one of us must be committed to the eternal defense of this miraculous experiment called America and at the heart of our democratic process—our elections. They are the foundational principle of our Constitution.

A few years ago, I won this primary with 73 percent of the vote. I could easily have done the same again. The path was clear, but it would have required that I go along with President Trump's lie about the 2020 election. It would have required that I enable his ongoing efforts to unravel our democratic system and attack the foundations of our republic. That was a path I could not and would not take.

No House seat, no office in this land is more important than the principles that we are all sworn to protect, and I well understood the potential political consequences of abiding by my duty. Our republic relies upon the goodwill of all candidates for office to accept honorably the outcome of elections. And tonight, Harriet Hageman has received the most votes in this primary. She won. I called her to concede the race. This primary election is over but now the real work begins.

The great and original champion of our party, Abraham Lincoln, was defeated in elections for the Senate and the House before he won the most important election of all. Lincoln ultimately prevailed, he saved our Union and he defined our obligation as Americans for all of history. Speaking at Gettysburg of the great task remaining before us, Lincoln said, 'That we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain. That this nation under God shall have a new birth of freedom and a government of the people, by the people and for the people shall not perish from this earth.'

As we meet here tonight that remains our greatest and most important task. Most of world history is a story of violent conflict of servitude and suffering. Most people in most places have not lived in freedom. Our American freedom is a providential departure from history. We are the exception. We have been given the gift of freedom by God and our founding fathers. It is said that the long arc of history bends toward justice and freedom. That's true, but only if we make it bend.

Today, our highest duty is to bend the arc of history to preserve our nation and its blessings to ensure that freedom will not perish, to protect the very foundations of this constitutional republic. Never in our nation's 246 years have we seen what we saw on January 6. Like so many Americans, I assumed that the violence and the chaos of that day would have prompted a united response, a recognition that this was a line that must never be crossed. A tragic chapter in our nation's history, to be studied by historians to ensure that it can never happen again.

August 17, 2022 12:39 PM  
Anonymous Liz Cheney said...

But instead, major elements of my party still vehemently defend those who caused it. At the heart of the attack on January 6 is a willingness to embrace dangerous conspiracies that attack the very core premise of our nation. That lawful elections reviewed by the courts when necessary, and certified by the states and Electoral College, determined who serves as president.

If we do not condemn the conspiracies and the lies, if we do not hold those responsible to account, we will be excusing this conduct, and it will become a feature of all elections. America will never be the same.

Today, as we meet here, there are Republican candidates for governor who deny the outcome of the 2020 election, and who may refuse to certify future elections if they oppose the results. We have candidates for secretary of state who may refuse to report the actual results of the popular vote in future elections. And we have candidates for Congress, including here in Wyoming, who refuse to acknowledge that Joe Biden won the 2020 election and suggest that states decertify their results.

Our nation is barreling, once again, towards crisis, lawlessness and violence. No American should support election deniers for any position of genuine responsibility, where their refusal to follow the rule of law will corrupt our future.

Our nation is young in the history of mankind and yet we're the oldest democracy in the world. Our survival is not guaranteed. History has shown us over and over again how poisonous lies destroyed three nations. Over the last several months, in the January 6 hearings, the American people have watched dozens of Republicans, including the most senior officials working for President Trump in the White House, the Justice Department and on his campaign—people who served President Trump loyally—testify that they all told him the election was not stolen or rigged and there was no massive fraud. That's why President Trump and others invent excuses, pretexts for people not to watch the hearings at all. But no citizen of this republic is a bystander. All of us have an obligation to understand what actually happened. We cannot abandon the truth and remain a free nation.

To believe Donald Trump's election lies, you must believe that dozens of federal and state courts who ruled against him, including many judges he appointed, were all corrupted and biased, that all manner of crazy conspiracy theories stole our election from us and that Donald Trump actually remains president today. As of last week, you must also believe that 30 career FBI agents, who have spent their lives working to serve our country, abandoned their honor and their oath and went to Mar-a-Lago, not to perform a lawful search or address a national security threat, but instead with a secret plan to plant fake incriminating documents in the boxes they seized. This is yet another insidious lie.

Donald Trump knows that voicing these conspiracies will provoke violence and threats of violence. This happened on January 6, and it's now happening again. It is entirely foreseeable that the violence will escalate further, yet he and others continue purposely to feed the danger. Today, our federal law enforcement is being threatened, a federal judge is being threatened. Fresh threats of violence arise everywhere. And despite knowing all of this, Donald Trump recently released the names of the FBI agents involved in the search. That was purposeful and malicious. No patriotic American should use these threats or be intimidated by them. Our great nation must not be ruled by a mob provoked over social media.

August 17, 2022 12:40 PM  
Anonymous Liz Cheney said...

Our duty as citizens of this republic is not only to defend the freedom that's been handed down to us. We also have an obligation to learn from the actions of those who came before, to the stories of grit and perseverance of the brave men and women who built and saved this union. In the lives of these great Americans, we find inspiration and purpose.

In May of 1864, after years of war and a string of reluctant Union generals, Ulysses S. Grant met General Lee's forces at the Battle of the Wilderness. In two days of heavy fighting, the Union suffered over 17,000 casualties. At the end of that battle, General Grant faced a choice. Most assumed he would do what previous Union generals had done and retreat. On the evening of May 7, Grant began to move. As the fires of the battle still smoldered, Grant rode to the head of the column. He rode to the intersection of Brock Road and Orange Plank Road. And there, as the men of his army watched and waited, instead of turning north back towards Washington and safety, Grant turns his horse south toward Richmond and the heart of Lee's army. Refusing to retreat, he pressed on to victory. Lincoln and Grant and all who fought in our nation's tragic Civil War, including my own great-great-grandfathers, saved our Union. Their courage saved freedom. And if we listen closely, they are speaking to us down the generations. We must not idly squander what so many have fought and died for.

America has meant so much to so many because we are the best hope of freedom on earth. Last week in Laramie, a gentleman came up to me with tears in his eyes. 'I'm not an American,' he said, 'But my children are. I grew up in Brazil. I know how fragile freedom is, and we must not lose it here.' A few days ago, here in Jackson, a woman told me that her grandparents had survived Auschwitz. They found refuge in America. She said she was afraid that she had nowhere to go if freedom died here.

Ladies and gentlemen, freedom must not and will not die here.

We must be very clear-eyed about the threat we face and about what is required to defeat it. I have said since January 6, that I will do whatever it takes to make sure Donald Trump is never again anywhere near the Oval Office.

This is a fight for all of us together. I'm a conservative Republican. I believe deeply in the principles and the ideals on which my party was founded. I love its history. And I love what our party has stood for. But I love my country more.

So, I ask you tonight to join me. As we leave here, let us resolve that we will stand together—Republicans, Democrats and independents—against those who would destroy our republic. They are angry and they are determined, but they have not seen anything like the power of Americans united in defense of our Constitution and committed to the cause of freedom. There is no greater power on this earth. And with God's help, we will prevail. Thank you all. God bless you. God bless Wyoming. God bless the United States of America.


Cheney's resounding defeat in yesterday's primary proves conservatives and the Republican party has abandoned democracy in favor of a demagogue, conspiracy theories, and red hats made in China.

August 17, 2022 12:44 PM  
Anonymous guys shouldn't dress like girls and play sports with them... said...

"is that what you're getting at?"

what I was getting at is that by removing proper verification and documentation procedures, it made it impossible to tell if there was widespread fraud or not

further undermining confidence in the process is how hard Dems and the mainstream tried to push the completely unsubstantiated claim that "experts say this was the most secure election in history"

by definition, it couldn't have been because we loosened verification and documentation procedures

"All you spout is trollish willful ignorance."

well, if it's so ignorant, why do you have so much trouble demonstrating how?

"Cheney's resounding defeat in yesterday's primary proves conservatives and the Republican party has abandoned democracy in favor of a demagogue, conspiracy theories, and red hats made in China."

actually, it proves her constituents recognized that she didn't share their priorities

this country has real problems

if she was working to solve them rather than obsessing on a defeated former President, se might have had a chance

she can probably get a job at CNN or MSNBC though

which is probably what she's really aiming for

August 17, 2022 1:50 PM  
Anonymous Merrick Garland....LOL!!!!!!!!!!! said...

Bush Republicanism, that zombie political persuasion which in its heyday did for the GOP and the conservative movement what Jimmy Carter and Mike Dukakis did for the Democrats, might not quite be dead. But rigor mortis set in several years ago to be sure.

Just ask Liz Cheney, whose political career was zombified in January 2021 when she opted to not just turn on Donald Trump in a public fashion — Cheney was always a Never Trumper; she just didn’t out herself as one until she thought the coast was clear — but to harp on the question.

Cheney voted for the idiotic post-presidential impeachment of Trump. Then she volunteered to serve on the disgraceful kangaroo court that is the Jan. 6 Committee, perhaps the most counterproductive political fiasco since Monsieur Robespierre felt the guillotine’s blade.

The rumblings within the GOP have gotten louder and louder since — especially as Trump-backed challengers have knocked off one impeachment voter after another, and the MAGA/revivalist wing of the party has laid waste to the Bush Republican crowd up and down the GOP ballot this year.

And Tuesday, the voters of Wyoming delivered to Cheney a metaphorical echo of what befell Robespierre. Harriet Hageman, a lawyer who’s made a name for herself going to war against the EPA and environmentalist wacko groups over a three-decade career and who ran unsuccessfully for governor in 2018, clobbered the most prominent Never Trumper in elected office by a 65-31 percent margin, with almost 60 percent of votes counted at time of publication.

The size of that beatdown is a big deal.

August 17, 2022 2:57 PM  
Anonymous Dems are prancing around waving wands that Slidin' Biden's approval rating is up..BUT IT'S STILL LOWER THAN TRUMP'S WAS AT THE SAME POINT...LOLOLOLOLOLHAHAHAHAHAHAROFLHEEHEEHEEHARDYHARHARLOLOLOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! said...

FiveThirtyEight’s composite approval rating for Biden, which is a weighted average of a number of polls, rose to 40.6% on Wednesday, an increase of more than 3 percentage points from 37.5% on July 21—the lowest of his presidency so far.

It’s the biggest rally in Biden's approval rating since he became president.

Biden's low came just days before Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) abruptly announced he reached a deal with fellow Democrats on the Inflation Reduction Act, signing off on more than $360 billion in spending to combat climate change after he held up earlier versions of the bill for a year while negotiating the price of the legislation down.

The past few weeks have also been marked by positive economic news, including plunging gas prices, strong jobs numbers and signs inflation may be starting to cool off, as the Biden Administration brushes off indicators that suggest the economy may have entered a recession.

Biden can also tout approving a drone strike that killed Al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahri, signing the PACT Act benefiting veterans exposed to toxic burn pits and signing the CHIPS Act to boost the competitiveness of the U.S. computer semiconductor manufacturing industry against China.


Biden's approval rating is still lower than former President Donald Trump's at the same point in his presidency: 42%, according to FiveThirtyEight

August 17, 2022 4:05 PM  
Anonymous Hey it's Donald - Has anyone seen my pillow guy? He was supposed to get me back in the Oval Office by now. said...

MSNBC's Joe Scarborough revealed a pair of "disturbing" phone calls he had this week with a friend and family member calling for the destruction of the U.S. government as investigators move closer to Donald Trump.

The FBI search of Mar-A-Lago has spooked the former president and enraged his supporters -- which Trump has tried to use as leverage to reduce the heat on himself -- and the "Morning Joe" host said that included some previously "boring" moderates who were now willing to destroy the constitutional republic rather than hold Trump accountable.

"If people want to understand the depths to which this anti-American sentiment is running in the Republican Party, I had two conversations yesterday," Scarborough said. "One with a family member and one with a Washington fixture, since the days of Ronald Reagan. Both were talking about how the FBI was the gestapo and they needed to be stamped out, spoke of revolution, and the Washington fixture, a guy who I always considered to be a mainstream conservative, a guy who, in the past at least, expressed concerns about some of Donald Trump's extremities, said to me, 'Joe, we can replace the U.S. government."

"It's not about the government, it's about an individual," he added. "Here's a guy that said we can throw away Madisonian democracy, we can throw away the Bill of Rights, we can throw away the Constitution. We can just get rid of a government that has fed and feeds more people, that's liberated more people throughout history, that's keeping the flames of freedom alive right now in Ukraine and in Central Europe, than any other country on the planet, and we can replace the U.S. government. That is the depths to which this cancer has spread among mainstream Republicans, and Liz Cheney is right. These people are angry, and they want to destroy our country -- the country where we have democratic elections and the winners who get the most votes are recognized as the winners, and the losers concede to those winners, and Donald Trump has changed all of that now."

Cheney, who until last year was the third-ranking Republican in the U.S. House and had one of the most conservative ratings in Congress, lost her GOP primary to pro-Trump candidate Harriet Hageman after voting to impeach the former president and serving on the Jan. 6 Committee investigating his attempt to overturn his 2020 election loss.

"Well, the hatred and the animosity spewed towards [president] Joe Biden from these people I spoke to yesterday, said -- they said, he's a moderate -- like boring guy from Delaware," Scarborough said of his friend. "Like, he used do do this to [Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez], you used to do this to [Sen.] Bernie Sanders and used to do this to [House speaker] Nancy Pelosi, and now Joe Biden is the radical who is destroying them?"

"It's just, it's nonsense," Scarborough added. "The problem is, it's dangerous nonsense when they start talking about the FBI being the gestapo and how the FBI needed to be defunded and how the FBI needs to be wiped out, and how we can replace the U.S. government. That's treasonous talk. Five years ago, that would be considered treasonous talk."

August 17, 2022 4:35 PM  
Anonymous TTFers need to lay off the psychedelics said...

""It's just, it's nonsense," Scarborough added. "The problem is, it's dangerous nonsense when they start talking about the FBI being the gestapo and how the FBI needed to be defunded and how the FBI needs to be wiped out, and how we can replace the U.S. government. That's treasonous talk. Five years ago, that would be considered treasonous talk.""

Joe Scarborough is the kind of demagogue that has made MSNBC the cable mews channel with the lowest viewership

objecting to the FBI's conduct in recent years is, by definition, American

in America, the agencies of the government are accountable to the people

having a President of the United States conduct a criminal investigation of the person who is currently leading in polls to run against him happens in Russia all the time

and over what? a document retention issue

we have courts to settle such disputes

as for "replacing the government", we vote on whether to do that every four years, and if the election were held today, the Biden administration would be replaced

which is why the Dems are trying an end-around to prevent the voters from having the option of voting for Donald Trump

but were you talking about the institutions of government?

the Dems want to eliminate the Constitution by reinterpreting it until it reinforces their agenda

they want to eliminate the Supreme Court by irrelevance, adding more justices any time they disagree with the views of the current ones

they want to eliminate the Electoral College that they feigned such concern for when it was temporarily delayed on January 6

August 18, 2022 6:09 AM  
Anonymous 61% of Dems in MC voted against the county executive and TTF thinks he hit a grand slam.... said...

In Russia, Putin stays in power by investigating and arresting any potential opponents. National security is often the rationale. Joe Biden is apparently a disciple of Putin.

According to a Department of Justice spokesperson, three passports belonging to President Donald Trump have been returned after they were improperly confiscated by the FBI during a raid at his Mar-a-Lago home last week.

Trump reported the confiscated passports Thursday. They were not itemized by the FBI as items taken.

"Wow! In the raid by the FBI of Mar-a-Lago, they stole my three Passports (one expired), along with everything else. This is an assault on a political opponent at a level never seen before in our Country. Third World!" Trump said Monday on Truth Social.

Members of the media claimed "DOJ sources" refuted the claim, but have been disproven.

The passport returns come less than 24-hours after DOJ prosecutors urged a judge not to release the affidavit that led to the raid.

"The affidavit supporting the search warrant presents a very different set of considerations. There remain compelling reasons, including to protect the integrity of an ongoing law enforcement investigation that implicates national security, that support keeping the affidavit sealed," DOJ presented to a federal judge. "Information about witnesses is particularly sensitive given the high-profile nature of this matter and the risk that the revelation of witness identities would impact their willingness to cooperate with the investigation. Disclosure of the government’s affidavit at this stage would also likely chill future cooperation by witnesses whose assistance may be sought as this investigation progresses, as well as in other high-profile investigations."

Trump is demanding the affidavit be released.

August 18, 2022 6:17 AM  
Anonymous the despicable day of dastardly Democraps is nearing nightfall said...

As a mother of two, I’m well acquainted with the tradition of back-to-school shopping. But this time, preparations look different for many families. From invasive COVID-19 vaccine requirements and woke curricular materials to surging costs for school supplies, back-to-school season has parents peeved — and for good reason.

From the beginning, President Joe Biden and Democrats have put special interest groups over students. The Biden administration slow-walked school reopenings and prioritized teachers unions’ demands over parents’ needs, with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Rochelle Walensky meeting with families just once while granting “instant access” to union bosses. In fact, Walensky even admitted that she changed the CDC’s school reopening guidance to give teachers unions “what they need.” Emails show she went so far as to recommend that schools keep their doors shut — just because the unions said so.

Children paid the price. Studies show students who learned remotely for the majority of the 2020-2021 school year “on average … lost the equivalent of about 50% of a typical school year’s math learning during that time.” The fallout was especially dramatic for low-income, black, and Latino students, leading to “the largest increase in educational inequity in a generation.”

Now, Democrats in Washington, D.C., have handed families in public, charter, and private schools an ultimatum: Get the COVID-19 vaccine or be expelled. This mandate disproportionately affects minority families. Roughly 40% of black school-age children in Washington, D.C., are unvaccinated, which means they could be banned from returning to school in person. The learning losses they will suffer as a result will have long-term consequences.

Even when students are in the classroom, they’re being bombarded with woke propaganda and radical gender ideology. In California, the San Diego Unified School District is promoting K-12 lesson plans that encourage children to explore “gender identities,” such as “non-binary,” “pansexual,” and “two-spirit.” In Washington, D.C., schools, children as young as 4 years old are being taught to identify “racist” family members and check their own “white privilege.” And in more than 4,500 classrooms all over the country, instructors are teaching the New York Times’s “1619 Project,” a discredited left-wing alternate history that claims the United States is inherently and irredeemably racist, as fact.

Parents who speak out at school board meetings have little recourse; when they do, they risk becoming targets of an FBI investigation, thanks to Attorney General Merrick Garland. To make matters worse, the Biden administration is spending millions of dollars from the Democrats’ $1.9 trillion spending spree on “anti-racist” and “social activism” indoctrination of children.

While the White House splurges on the taxpayers’ dime, parents are struggling to provide their children with the school supplies they need. With inflation at a 40-year high , everything is more expensive — including basics such as school supplies and uniforms. Sixty percent of parents report spending more on school supplies this year thanks to surging costs, spending an average of $661 per student, up 8% from 2021 and 27% from 2019. Even school districts are seeing dramatically higher costs for food, transportation, and school goods.

August 18, 2022 7:18 AM  
Anonymous the despicable day of dastardly Democraps is nearing nightfall said...

On the other hand, Republicans are championing parental rights and educational opportunity for every student. Over the 2020-2021 school year, 19 of the top 20 states with the highest percentage of in-person student learning were led by Republican governors. It’s Republicans who have fought against critical race theory and leftist efforts to replace parents with the state.

In Oklahoma, Gov. Kevin Stitt disciplined two Democrat-dominated school districts for failing to remove CRT from their curricula. And in Florida, Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a bill protecting parental rights in education.

Republicans have also led the charge for school choice expansion. Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin increased funding for educational options, strengthened parents’ rights over their child’s learning, and banned CRT from being taught in his state. And in the Grand Canyon State, Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey signed the most expansive school choice law in the nation.

As a mother, I understand how insulting it is to co-parent with the government. I’ve seen the strain that inflation is putting on family budgets. And I know I’m not alone. All over the country, parents are protesting at school board meetings, recalling rogue school board members, and running for office themselves. If Democrats think these parents aren’t going to show up at the polls on Election Day this November, they’re in for a surprise. Democrats are woke. Parents are awake.

August 18, 2022 7:19 AM  
Anonymous Laura Ingraham is delusional to think GOP voters will grow tired of Trump. They love his crimes said...

Donald Trump's in the headlines again, and as usual, it's because of sinister and criminal activity. This time, there's the added bonus of suspected espionage, likely around nuclear secrets, because Trump's criminal aesthetic is as understated as his tacky gold-plated New York penthouse. Unsurprisingly, this is causing some in the GOP elite to occasionally slip up, and allow their longing for Trump to just go away to peek out.

"The country I think is so exhausted," Fox News host Laura Ingraham said Monday on a right-wing podcast. "They're exhausted by the battle, the constant battle, that they may believe that, well, maybe it's time to turn the page if we can get someone who has all Trump's policies, who's not Trump."

Of course, Ingraham fails to remember that the majority of the country has always opposed Trump, who lost the popular vote by millions in both 2016 and 2020. Like most Republican pundits, she habitually conflates "the country" with "Republican voters," who are a minority, just one with disproportionate power due to serious flaws in the constitution.

Poor word choice aside, Ingraham's argument is basically that the corruption is finally wearing thin and that Republican primary voters may very well be ready to nominate someone else in 2024. Someone who is just as fascist, but without all the crime and corruption. Someone like, well, Florida's Gov. Ron DeSantis, who is even more authoritarian than Trump, but appears to have a lot less personal drama due to spending his non-work hours powered down at a recharging station.

And unsurprisingly, Ingraham is getting livid pushback from Trump loyalists. Newsmax host Eric Bolling unloaded on her Tuesday.

"What do you mean, 'No Trump?'" Bolling whined. "What's wrong with you?"

This debate between Ingraham and Bolling is refracted through their personal desires. Ingraham's job is secure, Trump or no Trump, and so she's likely just feeling personally exhausted by defending the utterly indefensible, night after night. Bolling is at Newsmax, where he landed after being fired after sexual harassment allegations at Fox News, only because of his skills as a Trump sycophant. But while their views are defined entirely by their career ambitions, it is reasonable to ask who is right: Will Republican voters finally get sick of Trump or are they sticking by him no matter how cartoonish his crimes get?

The answer is the latter.

Yeah, yeah I know there's polling and focus group data that suggest otherwise, but Trump will easily knock out his primary competitors in 2024, as he did in 2016, with the puerile bullying that so thrills the GOP base. More crucially, this "exhaustion" argument fails to understand that Trump's criminality is not something that Republican voters merely tolerate — it is central to his appeal to Republican voters, especially primary voters.

August 18, 2022 9:13 AM  
Anonymous Laura Ingraham is delusional to think GOP voters will grow tired of Trump. They love his crimes said...

Trump is a unique figure in American politics in two major ways. First, no other president has come even close to Trump, in terms of corruption and criminality. His rap sheet of sexual assault, financial crime, fraud, election cheating, attempted election theft, and blackmail schemes is so long that anyone who tries to recite it all invariably forgets another dozen scandals. Second, no ex-president has ever been so powerful, at least in the modern era. There's a reason people who leave the office never run again, even if they are popular like, say, Barack Obama. They know that their party's voters are usually ready for some fresh blood.

Trump's criminality helps explain his cult-like hold over the GOP base. His degeneracy is aspirational to these voters, who like to imagine that they, too, are along for the ride of floating above law and custom. (The audacity of the January 6 insurrectionists illustrates this phenomenon. The conveyor belt into jail for them illustrates the delusional nature of it all.) But the appeal of Trump's malevolence goes beyond the right's fantasies of reality TV villainy. It's about ideology. Fascism and corruption are as inseparable as Rudy Giuliani and cheap hair dye.

Fascism, authoritarianism, whatever you want to call it: It's an ideology that exists to refute modern ideals like democracy and equality under the law. Instead, it's about worshipping power and enforcing strict social hierarchies where the empowered class gets to do what it likes, while the oppressed classes have to live under the yoke. Openly flouting the law isn't just a demonstration of power. It's a tribute to the fascist ideal, where "the law" is something that only applies to the hated out-groups. (Yes, yes, I'm familiar with Frank Wilhoit's famous 2018 blog comment you are about to quote at me.) So Trumpers aren't hypocrites for wanting Hillary Clinton locked up for not committing any real crime while hoping Trump escapes justice. Crushing the rule of law and demonstrating that the only thing that matters is tribalism and power is the entire point of Trumpism.

A fascist leader who isn't also corrupt and a criminal doesn't make sense. What is the point of having all that power, if you're not going to flaunt your ability to get away with behavior that "lesser" people go straight to jail for? Plus, it drives liberals crazy when Trump gets away with yet another crime, and nothing tickles the GOP erogenous zones like infuriated liberals.

Rep. Liz Cheney's devastating primary loss in Wyoming Tuesday night perfectly illustrates this. Sure, there are lots of factors that feed into it, including the non-stop villainization of her in right-wing media and, of course, Republican misogyny. Ultimately, however, Cheney's defeat was a result of her rejecting the central motivating concern of Trumpism, which is the obliteration of rule of law in favor of a society organized solely on the basis of status and power. Cheney is rigidly right-wing in most ways, but she drew the line at how much impunity power should buy a person like Trump. For Republican primary voters, that is inexcusable. What good is power if you still have to live by some of the rules that you would enforce on others?

Having a president who gets away with serious crimes, while Black Lives Matter protesters and leftists are imprisoned and tear-gassed for no real reason, is pure heaven for the power-obsessed fascists that make up the most enthusiastic portion of the GOP base. There are, of course, other Republican voters who aren't quite as obsessive. But those people tend to vote less in primaries. That's why the increasingly unhinged radicals increasingly dominate the GOP candidate list.

August 18, 2022 9:13 AM  
Anonymous Laura Ingraham is delusional to think GOP voters will grow tired of Trump. They love his crimes said...

It's not just Trump, either. From Doug Mastriano in Pennsylvania to Kari Lake in Arizona to Tudor Dixon in Michigan, the candidates who are performing well with Republican primary voters, even in swing states, are those who are running on a platform of pure authoritarianism. They demand total immunity for people in their tribe while passing laws to destroy people they don't like for things that shouldn't be crimes, like aborting problem pregnancies or admitting that gay people exist. That, more than anything, is what their voters want.

Defending Trump for possible espionage may make Ingraham's job more annoying, but don't cry for the woman who made herself rich feeding fascist lies to an aging GOP base. Trump is exhausting, but that's exactly why his base loves him. He's successfully built a fantasy that titillates them: The man who can commit crimes without limit and never faces a moment of real accountability for it.

Sure, they may feel moments of doubt, since "flagrant criminal" really isn't a good image for a general election candidate. But when primary voting time comes around, the vicarious thrill of getting away with it will always trump Republican voters' more rational concerns. The only way to break the cycle is for Trump to face real criminal penalties, and prove that he does not possess the superhuman powers his base imagines him to have.

August 18, 2022 9:13 AM  
Anonymous Slidin' Biden is making inflation great again !!!!!!!!!!.......... said...

"Donald Trump's in the headlines again, and as usual, it's because of sinister and criminal activity. This time, there's the added bonus of suspected espionage, likely around nuclear secrets,"

this is why the judge needs to release the affidavit

our country is too fragile to withstand months, or years, of leaks without any substantiation

we had that during the Mueller investigation and when the findings were released, the speculative leaks were completely unproved

the warrants already released don't suggest any "nuclear secrets" are involved

Trump is an unpleasant and narcissistic personality

however, there is no proof of "sinister and criminal activity"

August 18, 2022 9:51 AM  
Anonymous Trump's thugs do his bidding said...

WASHINGTON (AP) — Hundreds of federal judges face the same task every day: review an affidavit submitted by federal agents and approve requests for a search warrant. But for U.S. Magistrate Judge Bruce Reinhart, the fallout from his decision to approve a search warrant has been far from routine.

He has faced a storm of death threats since his signature earlier this month cleared the way for the FBI to search former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate as part of a probe into whether he inappropriately removed sensitive materials from the White House. Reinhart’s home address was posted on right-wing sites, along with antisemitic slurs. The South Florida synagogue he attends canceled its Friday night Shabbat services in the wake of the uproar.

And if the affidavit it released, Trump's thugs will send their "storm of death threats" to every witness named in it.

But that's what you GQP thugs want.



August 18, 2022 10:23 AM  
Anonymous no fence was necessary around the Supreme Court when Roe was issued said...

The FBI division overseeing the investigation of former President Trump's handling of classified material at his Mar-a-Lago residence is also a focus of Special Counsel John Durham's investigation of the bureau's alleged abuses of power and political bias during its years-long Russiagate probe of Trump.

The FBI's nine-hour, 30-agent raid of the former president's Florida estate is part of a counterintelligence case run out of Washington – not Miami, as has been widely reported – according to FBI case documents and sources with knowledge of the matter. The bureau's counterintelligence division led the 2016-2017 Russia "collusion" investigation of Trump, codenamed "Crossfire Hurricane."

Although the former head of Crossfire Hurricane, Peter Strzok, was fired after the disclosure of his vitriolic anti-Trump tweets, several members of his team remain working in the counterintelligence unit, the sources say, even though they are under active investigation by both Durham and the bureau's disciplinary arm, the Office of Professional Responsibility. The FBI declined to respond to questions about any role they may be taking in the Mar-a-Lago case.

In addition, a key member of the Crossfire team – Supervisory Intelligence Analyst Brian Auten – has continued to be involved in politically sensitive investigations, including the ongoing federal probe of potentially incriminating content found on the abandoned laptop of President Biden's son Hunter Biden, according to recent correspondence between the Senate Judiciary Committee and FBI Director Christopher Wray. FBI whistleblowers have alleged that Auten tried to falsely discredit derogatory evidence against Hunter Biden during the 2020 campaign by labeling it Russian "disinformation," an assessment that caused investigative activity to cease.

Auten has been allowed to work on sensitive cases even though he has been under internal investigation since 2019, when Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz referred him for disciplinary review for his role in vetting a Hillary Clinton campaign-funded dossier used by the FBI to obtain a series of wiretap warrants to spy on former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page. Horowitz singled out Auten for cutting a number of corners in the verification process and even allowing information he knew to be incorrect slip into warrant affidavits and mislead the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act court.

In congressional testimony this month, Wray confirmed that "a number of" former Crossfire Hurricane team members are still employed at the bureau while undergoing disciplinary review. In the meantime, Wray has walled off the former Russiagate investigators only from participating in FISA wiretap applications, according to the sources.

Sen. Chuck Grassley, the ranking Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, has asked Wray for copies of recent case files and reports generated by Auten and whether he is included among the team the FBI has assembled to determine which of the seized Trump records fall within the scope of its counterespionage investigation and which fall outside of it.

Some former FBI officials worry that Auten, a top bureau expert on Russia and nuclear warfare, will have a hand in analyzing the boxes of documents agents seized from Trump's home on Aug. 8 to help determine if any of the alleged Top Secret material he kept there might have been compromised, potentially putting national security at risk.

"It is a disgrace that Auten is still even employed by the bureau," said 27-year FBI veteran Michael Biasello. "I would substitute other analysts and agents."

August 18, 2022 10:25 AM  
Anonymous only America persists in gender reassignment for minors, Europe has shut it down.... said...

A spate of headlines this month declared that America’s surge in transgender identification wasn’t being caused by a social contagion. These articles were prompted by a new study by Jack Turban and colleagues in Pediatrics, flagship journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics. The study claimed that social influence isn’t the reason that as many as 9% of America’s youth now call themselves transgender. Thus, Dr. Turban argues, efforts in conservative states to regulate on-demand puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones and surgery must be resisted.

Yet Dr. Turban’s study is deeply flawed and likely couldn’t have survived a reasonable peer-review process. The swift response from the scientific community made both points clear—with even those who support hormones and surgery for gender-dysphoric youth noting that Dr. Turban’s shoddy science undermined their cause.

Nevertheless, the media have promoted his work as a refutation of the claim that the wildfire spread of transgender identity is an example of social contagion—a phenomenon in which members of a group (mostly young and female) mutually influence one another’s emotions and behavior.

The Turban study rejects the social-contagion theory on the grounds that more biological boys than girls identified as trans in 2017 and 2019, according to data collected from 19 states by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Youth Risk Behavior Survey. But the researchers who helped design the CDC questionnaire explicitly warned that youths who identify as transgender may list their sex as their gender identity, making it impossible to discern who is male-to-female or female-to-male (a limitation Dr. Turban has acknowledged in the past).

In this latest study, he cites three sources suggesting that respondents interpret “sex” as “sex assigned at birth”—even though none of those studies says anything of the sort. To use a flawed sex statistic in an attempt to set aside the well-documented phenomenon of gender-dysphoric female teens’ flooding clinics is so amateurish that one can’t help but suspect bad faith.

The AAP has been giving Dr. Turban a platform for years, despite the mistakes that plague his research. Pediatrics published his highly flawed 2020 study alleging that puberty blockers reduce suicide in teens. The journal even chose the article as its “Best of 2020” despite receiving rebuttals that pointed out the rate of attempted suicide was twice as high among the puberty-blocked group and Dr. Turban hadn’t controlled for the possibility that better mental-health outcomes might be the result of factors other than hormonal intervention.

August 18, 2022 10:31 AM  
Anonymous only America persists in gender reassignment for minors, Europe has shut it down.... said...

In his correspondence with physicians who asked how such a study could be named best of the year, Lewis First, editor in chief of Pediatrics, said that award is based on “website views and article downloads,” not “editorial choices.” In response to a rebuttal from one of us (Julia Mason), who warned that the AAP was encouraging the misleading idea that sex can literally be changed, a reviewer said that her statement shouldn’t be published as it could be “offensive to the pediatric readership of the journal.” Pediatrics seems to be basing its editing choices on political calculation and the sensibilities of trans-identified teens. One wonders how many pediatricians who rely on the journal for professional guidance are aware of these criteria.

The AAP has ignored the evidence that has led Sweden, Finland and most recently the U.K. to place severe restrictions on medical transition for minors. The largest pediatric gender clinic in the world, the U.K.’s Gender Identity Development Service, was ordered to shut down in July after an independent review expressed concerns about clinicians rushing minors to medical transition. Medical societies in France, Belgium and Australia have also sounded the alarm. The U.S. is an outlier on pediatric gender medicine.

A major reason for this is the capture of institutions such as the AAP. Last year a resolution was submitted to the AAP’s annual leadership forum to inform the academy’s 67,000 members about the growing international skepticism of pediatric gender transition. It asked for a thoughtful update to the current practice of affirmation on demand.

Even though the resolution was in the top five of interest based on votes by members cast online, the AAP’s leadership voted it down. In their newsletter, they decried the resolution as transphobic and noted that only 57 members out of 67,000 had endorsed it. The following year, however, when only 53 members backed a resolution that supported affirmative intervention, the AAP allowed the motion to go through, saying that the previous year’s measure was “soundly defeated” while this year’s received “broad support.” When members submitted another resolution to conduct a review of the evidence, the AAP enforced for the first time a rule that shut down member comments, effectively burying it.

The AAP has stifled debate on how best to treat youth in distress over their bodies, shut down efforts by critics to present better scientific approaches at conferences, used technicalities to suppress resolutions to bring it into line with better-informed European countries, and put its thumb on the scale at Pediatrics in favor of a shoddy but politically correct research agenda. Its preference for fashionable political positions over evidence-based medicine is a disservice to member physicians, parents and children.

August 18, 2022 10:32 AM  
Anonymous Yep, Amanda's right, as usual said...

"They demand total immunity for people in their tribe while passing laws to destroy people they don't like for things that shouldn't be crimes, like aborting problem pregnancies or admitting that gay people exist. That, more than anything, is what their voters want."

as the TTFTrQll has clearly demonstrated over and over again.

August 18, 2022 10:52 AM  
Anonymous How deliberately they continue to forget said...

"no fence was necessary around the Supreme Court when Roe was issued"

Shot Fired Into Home of Blackmun, Often Threatened Over 1973 Abortion Ruling

And countless of these:

Kansas Abortion Doctor, George Tiller, Shot And Killed In Church in Witchita, KS


No wonder GQPers want guns legal. They aim to shoot those who do not adhere to their beliefs.

August 18, 2022 11:00 AM  
Anonymous Loyality, like that given to a mafia don said...

Allen Weisselberg, a Top Trump Executive, Pleads Guilty in Tax Scheme

Mr. Weisselberg has refused to cooperate in the Manhattan district attorney’s broader investigation into Donald J. Trump and his family business.

One of Donald J. Trump’s most trusted executives stood before a judge on Thursday and pleaded guilty to 15 felonies, admitting that he conspired with Mr. Trump’s company to carry out a scheme to avoid paying taxes on lavish perks — even while refusing to implicate the former president himself.

As part of the plea deal with the Manhattan district attorney’s office, the executive, Allen H. Weisselberg, is required to testify at the company’s trial if prosecutors choose to call on him, and to admit his role in conspiring with Mr. Trump’s company to carry out the tax scheme. That testimony could tilt the scales against the company, the Trump Organization, as it prepares for an October trial related to the same accusations.

“Yes, your honor,” Mr. Weisselberg said again and again in response to detailed questions from the judge, Juan Merchan, who asked whether he and the Trump Organization committed the criminal conduct underlying each of the 15 counts.

Under the terms of the plea deal, if Mr. Weisselberg testifies truthfully at the upcoming trial, he will receive a five-month sentence. Mr. Weisselberg, who was facing up to 15 years in prison, must also pay nearly $2 million in taxes, penalties and interest.

The plea deal does not require Mr. Weisselberg to cooperate with the district attorney’s broader criminal investigation of Mr. Trump, and his admissions will not implicate the former president. His willingness to accept jail time rather than turn on Mr. Trump underscores the extent of his loyalty to a family he has served for nearly a half-century, and it helped stymie the larger effort to indict Mr. Trump.

August 18, 2022 12:02 PM  
Anonymous At least Nixon had the good grace to resign and slink away in shame said...


Half of Republicans line up behind Trump in fight with FBI-Reuters/Ipsos

Thu, August 18, 2022, 10:23 AM
By Jason Lange

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Half of U.S. Republicans say federal law enforcement officials behaved irresponsibly since searching former President Donald Trump's Florida home for classified documents taken from the White House, a Reuters/Ipsos poll found this week.

FBI agents on Aug. 8 removed 11 sets of classified records from Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, some of which were labeled "top secret," a status reserved for the most sensitive U.S. national security information.

Trump announced that the search had taken place and has alleged without providing evidence that it was a politically motivated act, while Democratic President Joe Biden's Justice Department has said it is applying the law impartially.

The two-day Reuters/Ipsos poll completed on Wednesday suggests Republican voters could be largely siding with Trump despite the Republican Party's longstanding support for law enforcement.

Still, a significant slice of Republican respondents backed the FBI in the poll, a view closer to those of prominent Republicans such as former Vice President Mike Pence who on Wednesday called on the party to stop attacking the agency.

Fifty-four percent of Republican respondents said the FBI and Justice Department have behaved irresponsibly following the Mar-a-Lago search, compared to 23% who said they behaved responsibly. The rest said they didn't know.

Views on the unprecedented search reflect the nation's polarized politics. While Republicans have mostly lined up behind Trump, 71% of Democrats and about half of independents said federal law enforcement has acted responsibly.

Four days after the search, the Justice Department confirmed it was investigating whether the Espionage Act had been violated when documents were removed from the White House and taken to Trump's home.

U.S. media organizations on Thursday will ask a federal judge to release the evidence that the Justice Department submitted to convince a court it had probable cause to believe a crime had been committed.

Trump remains wildly popular among Republicans and is considering a 2024 presidential run.

The FBI has warned that threats against federal law enforcement have increased since the Mar-a-Lago search.

Concerns about political violence have surged since the deadly Jan. 6, 2021, assault on the U.S. Capitol by Trump supporters who tried to stop lawmakers from certifying Biden's victory in the 2020 presidential election.

Three days after the search of Trump's home, an armed man with right-wing views tried to breach an FBI office in Cincinnati, Ohio. He was shot dead by police following a car chase and gun battle.

The Reuters/Ipsos poll showed 85% of Americans think it is unacceptable for someone in their political party to commit violence to achieve a political goal. But among Republicans and Democrats alike, 12% of respondents said that kind of violence was OK.

The Reuters/Ipsos poll is conducted online in English throughout the United States. The latest poll gathered responses from 1,005 adults, including 436 Democrats and 387 Republicans. It has a credibility interval - a measure of precision - of four percentage points.

August 18, 2022 2:06 PM  
Anonymous homosexuality can't produce life, why would we call that a marriage? said...

a few facts that TT won't teach:

1. as an ex-President, Trump has security to view or possess confidential material at any level

2. as an ex-President, Trump has 24/7 security so the documents are perfectly safe in his possession

3. document retention is always in dispute when a President leaves - no other President has ever sent an FBI squadron of 30 agents to search is predecessor's home

4. the Espionage Act is very broad and contains many actions that most Americans wouldn't find very nefarious

"Trump announced that the search had taken place and has alleged without providing evidence that it was a politically motivated act"

Biden has made plenty of accusations of people's political motives without "providing evidence"

by it's nature, motivation is impossible to prove

but few people don't recognize this as political

August 18, 2022 2:48 PM  
Anonymous Because they're not facts - they're just stuff you pulled out of your said...

1. No he doesn't. Nor does any other ex-president.

2. There are different classifications of security, and it is highly unlikely that Mar-a-Lardo is built for the highest level of security required for some documents.

3. It appears that Biden didn't even know the FBI was planning something like this. You beef appears to be with Mr. Garland.

4. If the FBI got word of a regular citizen hiding top secret documents in one of their closets they would have crashed their home with a no-knock warrant in a heart beat, not played footsie with their lawyer for nearly 18 months before finally going in for documents that had been officially requested.

Trump did this to himself. If he had returned them if February of 2021 he could have said "oops, sorry, boxes got mixed up in the shuffle." He probably would have gotten away with it.

Having kept them for so long, and knowing he can barely read, one has to wonder what the heck he was planning to do with them?

Use them to blackmail the US govt? Sell them to other countries to pay off his real estate loans?

Few reasonable people don't recognize EVERYTHING Trump does is political, and for his own personal benefit.

But the political right hasn't been reasonable at least since Obama got into office.

August 18, 2022 5:20 PM  
Anonymous Jennifer Bendery said...

Ex-CIA Director Says Today’s GOP Is Most Dangerous Political Force He’s Ever Seen
“I agree,” said Michael Hayden, in response to a journalist who covers extremism describing Republicans as "nihilistic" and "contemptible."

Former CIA director Michael Hayden, a Bush administration appointee, said Wednesday that today’s Republican Party is the most dangerous political force he’s ever seen.

Hayden, who is a retired U.S. Air Force four-star general and also the former director of the National Security Agency (NSA), made his claim on Twitter, in response to a tweet by Financial Times associate editor Edward Luce.

“I’ve covered extremism and violent ideologies around the world over my career. Have never come across a political force more nihilistic, dangerous and contemptible than today’s Republicans. Nothing close,” Luce wrote in the tweet.

“I agree,” Hayden wrote in response to the tweet. “And I was the CIA Director.”

Hayden served as the CIA’s chief from May 2006 until February 2009. He was appointed by former President George W. Bush, and he was confirmed to his post by every Senate Republican who was present that day, except for one, Sen. Arlen Specter (Pa.).

Hayden was also the NSA director from March 1999 until April 2005, appointed by former President Bill Clinton. During his tenure, he oversaw the NSA’s controversial warrantless wiretapping program put in place after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.

Hayden has recently been warning about the damage that former President Donald Trump is doing to the country. Despite being a Republican, he endorsed Joe Biden for president in 2020 and even cut a video for him.

“If there is another term for President Trump, I don’t know what will happen to America,” Hayden said in the Oct. 2020 video released by Republican Voters Against Trump. He cited Trump’s disregard for the truth, his refusal to reject the actions of violent white supremacist groups and his disregard for America’s allies as reasons the nation could be in jeopardy.

August 18, 2022 5:25 PM  
Anonymous DeSantis' unconstitutional law gets a smackdown said...

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — A Florida judge on Thursday declared a Florida law championed by Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis that restricts race-based conversation and analysis in business and education unconstitutional.

Tallahassee U.S. District Judge Mark Walker said in a 44-page ruling that the “Stop WOKE” act violates the First Amendment and is impermissibly vague. Walker also refused to issue a stay that would keep the law in effect during any appeal by the state.

Walker said the law, as applied to diversity, inclusion and bias training in businesses, turns the First Amendment “upside down” because the state is barring speech by prohibiting discussion of certain concepts in training programs.

“If Florida truly believes we live in a post-racial society, then let it make its case,” the judge wrote. “But it cannot win the argument by muzzling its opponents.”

The governor’s office did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment. DeSantis has repeatedly said any losses at the lower court level on his priorities are likely to be reversed by appeals courts that are generally more conservative.

The ruling Thursday came in one of three lawsuits challenging the Stop Woke act. It was filed by private entities, Clearwater-based and others, claiming their free speech rights are curtailed because the law infringes on company training programs stressing diversity, inclusion, elimination of bias and prevention of workplace harassment. Companies with 15 or more employees could face civil lawsuits over such practices.

That lawsuit says Honeyfund seeks to protect the rights of private employers to “engage in open and free exchange of information with employees to identify and begin to address discrimination and harm” in their organizations.

Another lawsuit, which was filed Thursday by college professors and students, claims the law amounts to “racially motivated censorship” that will act to “stifle widespread demands to discuss, study and address systemic inequalities” underscored by the national discussion of race after the killing of George Floyd, who was Black, by Minneapolis police in May 2020.

“In place of free and open academic inquiry and debate, instructors fear discussing topics of oppression, privilege, and race and gender inequalities with which the Legislature disagrees,” the lawsuit says. “As a result, students are either denied access to knowledge altogether or instructors are forced to present incomplete or inaccurate information that is steered toward the Legislature’s own views.”

Like the professors, a group of K-12 teachers and a student claim in a third pending lawsuit that the law violates the Constitution’s protections of free expression, academic freedom and access to information in public schools.

“The Stop WOKE Act aims to forward the government’s preferred narrative of history and society and to render illegal speech that challenges that narrative,” the lawsuit says.

August 18, 2022 5:46 PM  
Anonymous How long before the Red Hats turn into Brown Shirts? said...

Republican House candidate Carl Paladino suggested on a radio show that Attorney General Merrick Garland “probably should be executed” following the FBI search of President Donald Trump’s Florida estate last week, according to The Buffalo News.

Garland “should not only be impeached, he probably should be executed,” Paladino said in an interview with a Breitbart radio host last week, according to the outlet.

“The guy is just lost. He’s a lost soul. He’s trying to get an image, and his methodology is just terrible,” he added. “To raid the home of a former president is just... people are scratching their heads and they’re saying, ‘What is wrong with this guy?’”

Paladino is running for the GOP nomination to replace the retiring Rep. Chris Jacobs (R-N.Y.) in western New York state. He is a businessman who previously ran for governor in New York in 2010. Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.), chair of the House Republican Conference and third-ranking member in GOP House leadership, has endorsed his campaign.

A Stefanik spokesperson did not immediately return a request for comment.

When asked later in the interview to explain his comment suggesting the execution of the U.S. attorney general, Paladino claimed he was “just being facetious.” [Of course he did, because you know, if you're serious about it you go to jail.]

Paladino’s kidding around about executing U.S. officials comes amid a huge spike in threats to law enforcement over the raid on Trump’s estate. Some supporters of the former president have used violent rhetoric online, calling on Garland and other federal agents to be assassinated. GOP lawmakers have fanned the flames by attacking the FBI and calling for it to be defunded.

FBI director Chris Wray, who was appointed in 2017 by Trump, called threats circulating online against federal agents and the Justice Department “deplorable and dangerous.”

Paladino has a history of making controversial and fringe comments. Earlier this year, he praised Nazi leader Adolf Hitler’s ability to rouse “the crowds” and declared Hitler “the kind of leader we need today.” He later said that he does not actually support Hitler. [Of course he did, you know, because of that pesky "political correctness" thing.]

In 2016, Paladino said that he would like to see then-President Barack Obama die from mad cow disease and first lady Michelle Obama “return to being a male and let loose in the outback of Zimbabwe where she lives comfortably in a cave with Maxie, the gorilla.”

August 18, 2022 5:53 PM  
Anonymous Who ordered the basket of deplorable vegetables? said...

With President Joe Biden's approval rating stuck in the low 40s, Republican Senate candidates should in theory be having an easy time with raising money and putting their Democratic rivals on the defensive.

However, as Politico's Playbook notes, this has not been the case, as several Trump-backed Republican Senate candidates have struggled to gain traction in what should be a favorable political environment.

"In Pennsylvania, a ferocious Democratic campaign to paint Mehmet Oz as an out-of-touch carpetbagger has left him trailing in multiple polls," Playbook notes. "Herschel Walker may be a Georgia Bulldogs legend, but key voters appear to be doubting him after a series of gaffes and abuse allegations. The backing of Silicon Valley titan Peter Thiel hasn't yet been enough to sell Blake Masters' sharp-edged conservatism to Arizona voters."

Oz has been performing particularly poorly against Democratic rival John Fetterman, as several polls have come out showing him trailing by double-digit margins.

David Bergstein of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee tells Politico that "Senate campaigns are candidate-versus-candidate battles" and that "right now, the Republican roster of recruits, it's looking like a bunch of rotten crudités."

The reference to "crudités" is a shot at Oz's already-infamous campaign video shot inside a grocery store in which he complained that Biden was to blame for the high price of crudités, which Fetterman was quick to point out are referred to as "veggie trays" in Pennsylvania.

August 18, 2022 6:16 PM  
Anonymous homosexuality never produces life, two of 'em ain't ever a marriage said...

"1. No he doesn't. Nor does any other ex-president."

yes, he does

Presidents have the highest level of clearance

it can only be removed by a Presidential order from the current President

Biden hasn't done that, nor has any President

indeed, the reason ex-Presidents are given staff and offices is so they can be ready if called by the current President for assignments, generally requiring highly classified briefings

and, when Trump declares his candidacy, he will receive daily intelligence briefings similar to what the President gets

"2. There are different classifications of security, and it is highly unlikely that Mar-a-Lardo is built for the highest level of security required for some documents."

probably not

but Mar-a-Largo is

Trump went there frequently when President bringing whatever documents he needed and also having them sent there

obviously, it's secure

he has a full complement of Secret Service watching every inch of the place

say, do you ever know what you're talking about?

"3. It appears that Biden didn't even know the FBI was planning something like this. You beef appears to be with Mr. Garland."

just because he doesn't remember it, doesn't mean he didn't know

he'd have a hard time remembering what he had for breakfast

he heads up the executive branch

if he had an objection to this action, Garland would be fired

it's not feasible he wasn't told about this crossing of the Rubicon

"4. If the FBI got word of a regular citizen hiding top secret documents in one of their closets they would have crashed their home with a no-knock warrant in a heart beat, not played footsie with their lawyer for nearly 18 months before finally going in for documents that had been officially requested."

he's not a regular citizen

regular citizens chose him to be President with the full knowledge he would have access to classified material

August 18, 2022 9:16 PM  
Anonymous Why would Biden allow Trump - the guy who got impeached for trying to blackmail President Zelenskyy for dirt on his son - keep his security clearance? said...

"Presidents have the highest level of clearance
it can only be removed by a Presidential order from the current President
Biden hasn't done that, nor has any President"

Where do you get your information from, Russia?

31 CFR § 2.2 - Access to classified information by historical researchers, former Treasury Presidential and Vice Presidential appointees, and former Presidents and Vice Presidents.

§ 2.2 Access to classified information by historical researchers, former Treasury Presidential and Vice Presidential appointees, and former Presidents and Vice Presidents.
(a) Access to classified information may be granted *only to individuals who have a need-to-know* the information. This requirement *may be waived*, however, for individuals who:

(1) Are engaged in historical research projects;

(2) Previously occupied a position in the Treasury to which they were appointed by the President under 3 U.S.C. 105(a)(2)(A), or the Vice President under 3 U.S.C. 106(a)(1)(A); or

(3) Served as President or Vice President.

(b) Access to classified information may be granted to individuals described in paragraph (a) of this section upon:

(1) A written determination by Treasury's Senior Agency Official, under Section 5.4(d) of Executive Order 13292, that access is consistent with the interest of the national security; and

(2) Receipt of the individual's written agreement to safeguard classified information, including taking all appropriate steps to protect classified information from unauthorized disclosure or compromise. This written agreement must also include the individual's consent to have any and all notes (including those prepared or stored in electronic media, whether written or oral) reviewed by authorized Treasury personnel to ensure that no classified information is contained therein and, if so, that the classified information is not published.

(A) A historical researcher is not authorized to have access to foreign government information or information classified by another Federal department or agency.

(B) A former Treasury Presidential or Vice Presidential appointee is only authorized access to classified information that the former official originated, reviewed, signed or received while serving as such an appointee.

August 19, 2022 1:14 AM  
Anonymous Why would Biden allow Trump - the guy who got impeached for trying to blackmail President Zelenskyy for dirt on his son - to keep his security clearance? said...

(C) A former President or Vice President is only authorized access to classified information that was prepared by Treasury while that individual was serving as President or Vice President.

(ii) Granting access to classified information pursuant to this section does not constitute the granting of a security clearance for access to classified information.

(d) Treasury personnel will coordinate access to classified information by individuals described in paragraph (a) of this section with the Director, Office of Security Programs, who will ensure that the written agreement described in paragraph (b)(2) of this section is signed as a condition of being granted access to classified information.

(e) Any review of classified information by an individual described in paragraph (a) of this section shall take place in a location designated by the Director, Office of Security Programs. Such persons must be accompanied at all times by appropriately authorized Treasury personnel authorized to have access to the classified information being reviewed. All notes (including those prepared or stored in electronic media, whether written or oral) made by an individual described in paragraph (a) of this section shall remain in the custody of the Office of Security Programs pending a determination by appropriately cleared subject matter experts that no classified information is contained therein.

(f) An individual described in paragraph (a) of this section is subject to search, as are all packages or carrying cases prior to entering or leaving Treasury. Access to Treasury-originated classified information at another Federal department or agency, as may be authorized by the Director, Office of Security Programs shall be governed by security protocols in effect at the other Federal department or agency.

(g) Treasury personnel must perform a physical verification and an accounting of all classified information each time such information is viewed by an individual described in paragraph (a) of this section. Physical verification and an accounting of all classified information shall be made both prior to and after viewing. Any discrepancy must be immediately reported to the Director, Office of Security Programs.

(h) An individual described in paragraph (a) of this section may be charged reasonable fees for services rendered by Treasury in connection with the review of classified information under this section. To the extent such services involve searching, reviewing, and copying material, the provisions of § 2.1(b)(8) shall apply.

August 19, 2022 1:15 AM  
Anonymous Oh wait, he didn't! said...

By David E. Sanger
Updated Feb. 10, 2021

WASHINGTON — President Biden said on Friday that he would bar his predecessor, Donald J. Trump, from receiving intelligence briefings traditionally given to former presidents, saying that Mr. Trump could not be trusted because of his “erratic behavior” even before the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol.

The move was the first time that a former president had been cut out of the briefings, which are provided partly as a courtesy and partly for the moments when a sitting president reaches out for advice. Currently, the briefings are offered on a regular basis to Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama.

Mr. Biden, speaking to Norah O’Donnell of CBS News, said Mr. Trump’s behavior worried him “unrelated to the insurrection” that gave rise to the second impeachment of Mr. Trump.

“I just think that there is no need for him to have the intelligence briefings,” Mr. Biden said.

“What value is giving him an intelligence briefing?” Mr. Biden added. “What impact does he have at all, other than the fact he might slip and say something?”

The White House said this week that it had been reviewing whether the former president, whose impeachment trial in the Senate begins on Tuesday, should receive the briefings. The chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Representative Adam B. Schiff, said last month, just before Mr. Biden’s inauguration, that Mr. Trump’s access to any classified information should be cut off.

“There is no circumstance in which this president should get another intelligence briefing, not now and not in the future,” said Mr. Schiff, Democrat of California, who was the House manager for Mr. Trump’s first impeachment trial, a year ago.

“Indeed, there were, I think, any number of intelligence partners around the world who probably started withholding information from us because they didn’t trust the president would safeguard that information, and protect their sources and methods,” Mr. Schiff said. “And that makes us less safe. We’ve seen this president politicize intelligence, and that’s another risk to the country.”

August 19, 2022 1:21 AM  
Anonymous Oh wait, he didn't! said...

The question of how Mr. Trump handles intelligence came up several times during his presidency. Shortly after he fired the F.B.I. director James B. Comey in 2017, Mr. Trump told the Russian foreign minister and the Russian ambassador about a highly classified piece of intelligence about the Islamic State that came from Israel. The Israelis were outraged.

Later in his presidency, Mr. Trump took a photograph with his phone of a classified satellite image showing an explosion at a missile launchpad in Iran. Some of the markings were blacked out first, but the revelation gave adversaries information — which they may have had, anyway — about the abilities of American surveillance satellites.

There were other examples, and Mr. Trump’s aides later said that because he declined to read intelligence reports — preferring an oral briefing — he did not see the “(S)” and “(U)” markings that indicated “secret” and “unclassified.”

But there was a deeper worry about how Mr. Trump could use intelligence now that he has retreated to Mar-a-Lago, his club in Florida. The former president has talked openly about the possibility of running for the White House again, perhaps under the banner of a third party. The fear was that he would use, or twist, intelligence to fit his political agenda, something he was often accused of in office.

Among those arguing to cut off Mr. Trump’s access was Susan M. Gordon, a career C.I.A. officer who served as deputy director of national intelligence until 2019, when she left after being passed over for director.

In an opinion article in The Washington Post in January, Ms. Gordon, one of the most respected intelligence officers of her generation, wrote that the danger of providing intelligence to a president whose business deals might make him beholden to foreign investors and lenders was just too great. Ms. Gordon frequently briefed Mr. Trump.

“His post-White House ‘security profile,’ as the professionals like to call it, is daunting,” she wrote the week after the attack on the Capitol. “Any former president is by definition a target and presents some risks. But a former President Trump, even before the events of last week, might be unusually vulnerable to bad actors with ill intent.”

August 19, 2022 1:21 AM  
Anonymous Trump can thank Watergate (and Nixon) for the Presidential Records Act - which he completely ignored said...

After a week punctuated with reprimands of the Department of Justice by Republican lawmakers and their subsequent demands for accountability following an FBI search of former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence, the search warrant released Friday indicates the search was conducted in connection with, among other things, the Espionage Act.

The Espionage Act is actually a series of statutes under 18 US Code Chapter 37 related to the collection, retention, or dissemination of national defense or classified information. The Mar-a-Lago search warrant referred to Section 793 — “Gathering, transmitting or losing defense information,” which doesn’t just cover “spying” in the sense that many think of when they hear the term. Section 793 specifically states that people legally granted access to national defense documents — people like the former president — are subject to punishment should they improperly retain that information.

Under the Presidential Records Act, which relates to the retention of government documents by the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), official documents and other material or information a president or a vice president may have obtained while in office must go to NARA for preservation.

The Presidential Records Act is a post-Watergate innovation that “changed the legal ownership of the official records of the President from private to public, and established a new statutory structure under which Presidents, and subsequently NARA, must manage the records of their Administrations,” according to the NARA website. Under that statute, presidential records belong to the national archivist — and therefore the American people — when a president leaves office, unless that person has the permission of the archivist to dispose of records that are no longer useful.

That didn’t happen at the end of the Trump administration; instead, as Maggie Haberman reported on a recent episode of the New York Times podcast The Daily, Trump took 15 boxes of material with him when he departed for Mar-a-Lago as Joe Biden took office. Those boxes contained, as Haberman recounts, items like a raincoat and golf balls. They also contained a number of documents that fell under the Presidential Records Act, and NARA spent the better part of 2021 negotiating with Trump’s team to obtain those records. When NARA finally received those documents earlier this year, Haberman reported, they found several marked “classified.”

Violating the Presidential Records Act alone would be significant enough, but, as Haberman said, “the fact that there were documents marked ‘classified’ in these boxes raised all kinds of concerns from federal officials.” Even more concerning, Trump apparently didn’t return all of the records falling under the Presidential Records Act — prompting Monday’s Mar-a-Lago search. That yielded 11 tranches of documents, four of which are top secret, three of which are labeled “secret,” three others labeled “confidential,” and one labeled “various classified/TS/SCI documents,” meaning they’re meant to be read only in secure rooms by people with high levels of security clearance, according to the Justice Department’s property receipts.

August 19, 2022 1:45 AM  
Anonymous defund the Dems said...

"President Biden said on Friday that he would bar his predecessor, Donald J. Trump, from receiving intelligence briefings traditionally given to former presidents,"

saying he was going to is not the same as doing it

Biden never issued a Presidential order revoking Trump's security clearance

"Violating the Presidential Records Act alone would be significant enough"

not really

every former President has had disputes about the records

plus, there are no criminal penalties under the act

“the fact that there were documents marked ‘classified’ in these boxes raised all kinds of concerns from federal officials.”

markings can be outdated

Trump, by removing these records, declassified them

btw, it's common knowledge that things are overclassified in Washington

how about the affidavit the DOJ doesn't want to release?

first, they were saying they couldn't because of national security

then, they changed to saying it's to protect the investigation

now, they've pivoted to saying it's for the protection of the witnesses

truth is, it's a way to dodge accountability

August 19, 2022 7:32 AM  
Anonymous Roevember is coming said...

Right wing politicians act like abortion is some kind of fun party for women, one that is easily discarded as no big deal. They give it no more thought than they would give to a highway bill or naming a post office.

This is the result:

A South Carolina lawmaker on Tuesday had to fight back tears as he explained that an anti-abortion law he’d voted for led to a young woman nearly losing her uterus, and even put her life at risk. Republican State Rep. Neal Collins told the state’s House Judiciary Committee that he’d lost sleep after learning about the case of a 19-year-old woman whose water broke after just 15 weeks of pregnancy. He said that because the fetus had a heartbeat, lawyers advised doctors that they could not remove the fetus, despite that being the recommended medical course of action. The young woman was discharged from hospital. “First, she’s going to pass this fetus in the toilet,” Collins said. “She’s going to have to deal with that on her own.” He added that a doctor told him that there was a “greater than 50 percent chance that she’s going to lose her uterus” and “there’s a 10 percent chance that she will develop sepsis and herself die.” “That weighs on me,” Collins added. “I voted for that bill. These are affecting people.”

Huh. It weighs on him. He voted to protect a 15 week old fetus that cannot survive over the health and possibly the life of the fully formed human in whose body it exists.

The good news is that this lurid, horrifying story finally woke him up and he’s decided not to vote for a total ban with only an exception for the life of the mother. If only they would listen to people who actually understand the ramifications of their intrusion into the most intimate decisions people have to make in their lives they might be spared those sleepless nights when they are confronted with the cruelty they’ve inflicted on people.

August 19, 2022 7:44 AM  
Anonymous It's not just a good idea, it's the LAW said...

"plus, there are no criminal penalties under the [Presidential Records] act"

There doesn't need to be - that is already covered under existing laws:

18 U.S. Code § 641 - Public money, property or records

Whoever embezzles, steals, purloins, or knowingly converts to his use or the use of another, or without authority, sells, conveys or disposes of any record, voucher, money, or thing of value of the United States or of any department or agency thereof, or any property made or being made under contract for the United States or any department or agency thereof; or

Whoever receives, conceals, or retains the same with intent to convert it to his use or gain, knowing it to have been embezzled, stolen, purloined or converted—

Shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both; but if the value of such property in the aggregate, combining amounts from all the counts for which the defendant is convicted in a single case, does not exceed the sum of $1,000, he shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than one year, or both.

The word “value” means face, par, or market value, or cost price, either wholesale or retail, whichever is greater.

18 U.S. Code § 2071 - Concealment, removal, or mutilation generally

(a) Whoever willfully and unlawfully conceals, removes, mutilates, obliterates, or destroys, or attempts to do so, or, with intent to do so takes and carries away any record, proceeding, map, book, paper, document, or other thing, filed or deposited with any clerk or officer of any court of the United States, or in any public office, or with any judicial or public officer of the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both.

(b) Whoever, having the custody of any such record, proceeding, map, book, document, paper, or other thing, willfully and unlawfully conceals, removes, mutilates, obliterates, falsifies, or destroys the same, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both; and shall forfeit his office and be disqualified from holding any office under the United States. As used in this subsection, the term “office” does not include the office held by any person as a retired officer of the Armed Forces of the United States.

18 U.S. Code § 1505 - Obstruction of proceedings before departments, agencies, and committees

Whoever, with intent to avoid, evade, prevent, or obstruct compliance, in whole or in part, with any civil investigative demand duly and properly made under the Antitrust Civil Process Act, willfully withholds, misrepresents, removes from any place, conceals, covers up, destroys, mutilates, alters, or by other means falsifies any documentary material, answers to written interrogatories, or oral testimony, which is the subject of such demand; or attempts to do so or solicits another to do so; or

Whoever corruptly, or by threats or force, or by any threatening letter or communication influences, obstructs, or impedes or endeavors to influence, obstruct, or impede the due and proper administration of the law under which any pending proceeding is being had before any department or agency of the United States, or the due and proper exercise of the power of inquiry under which any inquiry or investigation is being had by either House, or any committee of either House or any joint committee of the Congress—

Shall be fined under this title, imprisoned not more than 5 years or, if the offense involves international or domestic terrorism (as defined in section 2331), imprisoned not more than 8 years, or both.

August 19, 2022 9:06 AM  
Anonymous The "standing order" has no legs said...

"Trump, by removing these records, declassified them"

18 officials from Trump's administration say otherwise:

'Fiction': Top Trump Officials Tell CNN His 'Standing Order' Claim Is Rubbish
Trump's claim about a "standing order" that automatically declassified documents he took home is false, according to many of his former administration officials.

More than a dozen former top Trump administration officials have refuted former President Donald Trump’s claim that he had a “standing order” stipulating that classified documents automatically became declassified when he took them from the Oval Office to his White House residence, CNN reported Thursday.

Since the FBI searched Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort for top-secret materials that may have been improperly taken there, Trump and his allies have claimed, among other excuses, that the former president had a “standing order” in place that declassified them.

But, according to 18 officials from his administration who spoke to CNN, no such order was ever issued.

Several officials reportedly laughed or scoffed at the notion. One called it “bullshit.”

Many of them even went on the record.

John Kelly, who was Trump’s chief of staff from 2017 to 2019, told CNN that “nothing approaching an order that foolish was ever given” during his tenure.

“And I can’t imagine anyone that worked at the White House after me that would have simply shrugged their shoulders and allowed that order to go forward without dying in the ditch trying to stop it,” he added.

Mick Mulvaney, Kelly’s successor, also said he was not aware of any such order.

Trump’s former national security adviser John Bolton called Trump’s claim “a complete fiction.” Olivia Troye, who was a homeland security adviser to former Vice President Mike Pence, called the idea of a blanket declassification “ludicrous.”

A president does have the authority to declassify documents, but there is a formal process involved. It’s not clear if Trump followed that process. The documents the FBI sought from Mar-a-Lago were reportedly very sensitive in nature and included materials related to nuclear weapons.

The “standing order” excuse is among a rotation of other explanations that Trump and his team have offered. Trump has also claimed baselessly that any damaging materials found by the FBI must have been planted on his property.

August 19, 2022 9:13 AM  
Anonymous the gay agenda is totalitarian said...

"A president does have the authority to declassify documents, but there is a formal process involved."

that process is not statutory, it is a set of rules formulated by unelected bureaucrats

in America, the only legitimate authority is that bestowed by voters

"The documents the FBI sought from Mar-a-Lago were reportedly very sensitive in nature and included materials related to nuclear weapons."

you keep repeating this dubious claim without any evidence

funny how you are always criticizing Trump for making a claim without evidence

yet, that's your standard MO

perhaps your hypocrisy is what's keeping you up at night

August 19, 2022 10:18 AM  
Anonymous we are so fortunate Merrick Garland was blocked from the Supreme Court - he is an enemy of the Constitution said...

The Justice-backed FBI raid of former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago winter resort home has increased the percentage of people who believe that President Joe Biden is using the G-men as his “personal Gestapo.”

In the latest Rasmussen Reports survey, 53% of likely voters agreed that “there is a group of politicized thugs at the top of the FBI that are using the FBI as Joe Biden’s personal Gestapo.”

August 19, 2022 10:38 AM  
Anonymous Why to Trump and his boot lickers keep changing their story so much? said...

""A president does have the authority to declassify documents, but there is a formal process involved."
that process is not statutory, it is a set of rules formulated by unelected bureaucrats
in America, the only legitimate authority is that bestowed by voters"

It is amazing how quickly proponents of the "law and order party" can make up excuses for their dear leader to ignore secret information protocols.

Federal courts have ruled that they will refuse to recognize what they consider to be an inference of declassification.

The U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals wrote in a 2020 decision about whether statements made by then-President Trump declassified the existence of a CIA program that “declassification, even by the president, must follow established procedures.”

"Declassification cannot occur unless designated officials follow
specified procedures. (76) Moreover, courts cannot “simply assume,
over the well-documented and specific affidavits of the CIA to the
contrary,” that disclosure is required simply because the information
has already been made public. (77) The Shiner affidavits, in addition to
justifying the two FOIA exemptions, expressly stated that no
declassification procedures had been followed with respect to any
documents pertaining to the alleged covert program. (78) Moreover, the
Times cites no authority that stands for the proposition that the
President can inadvertently declassify information and we are aware
of none. Because declassification, even by the President, must follow
established procedures, that argument fails.

(75) Id. (citing Cafeteria Workers v. McElroy, 367 U.S. 886, 890 (1961)).

(76) As explained above, Executive order 13,526 established the detailed
process through which secret information can be appropriately
declassified. [Oh look, this rule was made by an elected president - Thanks Obama! - NOT an "unelected bureaucrat!"]

(77) Phillippi, 655 F.2d at 1325, 1330. The Times is also concerned that
“unless the President declassifies information by formal means or with
magic words – or the circumstances are otherwise “exceptional” – a court
can NEVER infer declassification[.]” [BB 33] Such concerns are mitigated,
however, by the “official acknowledgement” doctrine. If the President
publicly discloses the existence of a covert program within the Wilson
framework, [BB 32-32] then there would be no need for courts to “infer

August 19, 2022 12:30 PM  
Anonymous when will Hillary be tried for mishandling classified information?.... said...

sorry, the Supreme Court would not uphold that decision

bureaucrats work for the President, no the other way around

The public perception is growing – that a “double standard” exists in applying laws, including the Fourth Amendment. One standard exists for Democrats, another for Republicans, including former President Trump. The impact is of that perception on public trust is devastating.

In cases like former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s proven mishandling of classified documents, use of a secret server, intermingling of open and classified documents where susceptible to foreign espionage, foreign fundraising for her foundation while Secretary of State, destruction of tens of thousands of emails, “bleaching” of her hard drive, creating a false story to trigger an FBI investigation into her 2016 opponent – no legal consequences.

In the case of former President Donald Trump allegedly mishandling of documents – while making them available to Justice, keeping them under lock and key, and negotiating – the result has been unprecedented legal consequences, a massive FBI raid on his home.

What is publicly known suggests Trump held documents of importance to him at his home, some relating to decisions made, some tied to conversations with foreign leaders, some memorializing privileged attorney-client conversations, some subject to executive privilege, possibly all declassified.

What is also known – or should be – is that presidents ritually have conversations with National Archives on leaving office, are allowed to retain some documents. From George Washington through Jimmy Carter, presidential documents were the exclusive property of the president.

After 1978, following the Presidential Records Act of 1978, documents deemed official “presidential records” were considered “public,” with exceptions for personal retention. Conveniently, Carter signed that act in 1978 but it became effective January 20, 1981 – the day Carter left office and Reagan assumed office.

Notable, the act leaves questions unresolved. For example, under Section 2208, the Archivist can make documents public without a former president’s approval, if his successor permits it, which raises the question – what if the Archivist feels political pressure to disgorge private or untimely data? What if an outgoing president has concerns about potential unfairness or selective release?

Under Section 2201, which sets “official record” definitions, gaps are worked out between a former president and Archivist, such as what is the “segregable portion” of a document for retention purposes, and “direct effect upon” presidential duties.

A former president is allowed to retain “personal records,” including “documentary materials,” “diaries, journals, or other personal notes,…,” “materials relating to private political associations…,” “materials relating exclusively to the President’s own election…,” and “materials directly relating to the election of … “ lower officials.

Deciding what is difficult. Room for accommodation exists, built into the statute. Also note that a president can declassify documents. No Supreme Court precedent exists indicating a president cannot declassify absent typical procedures.

August 19, 2022 12:38 PM  
Anonymous when will Hillary be tried for mishandling classified information?.... said...

By contrast, a secretary of state is not a president. A secretary cannot declassify documents the State did not classify. A President can declassify anything.

Compounding public cynicism, some in the media want to compare Clinton’s obfuscation and alleged crimes with Trump’s actions. These arguments are laughable, the media reaction tragic.

The Washington Post says, for example, Trump’s possible mishandling under 18 USC 793, 2071, and 1519 is different because penalties are higher than for crimes Clinton might have faced under 18 USC 1924 for “unauthorized removal and retention of classified documents.”

They make much of ten-year versus five-year potential prison terms, a complete red herring. That has nothing to do with the Fourth Amendment. Liberal outlets try to distinguish the cases saying Trump is “under investigation” for not stopping rioters on January 6, another red herring.

They say Clinton’s egregious mishandling of classified material was cleared by the FBI’s James Comey – who had no legal authority to do so and was rushing his own anti-Trump agenda. Being cleared by Comey is more vilification than vindication, but liberals forget that.

Despite constant line-blurring, apparent deception, and intentional misinterpretation, like pretending she might have “wiped” her server with a “cloth,” Clinton is deemed “cooperative.”

Meanwhile, Trump’s lawyers allowed full access last May – more than a year after he left office, but he is accused of being uncooperative, as questions remain over a second subpoena. That was enough to bring the wrath of Biden, Justice, and the FBI down around him.

The disparate, unequal treatment of these two national leaders is breathtaking, Clinton and cronies getting a free pass, even after creating a false probe of Trump tied to “Russia collusion” that proved distracting, fictional, and remains under criminal investigation.

Bottom line? The public is losing confidence in Democrat leaders at Justice, the FBI, and White House. Polls show plummeting public trust, a sense that institutions are not acting fairly, are politically corrupt, and work under a politically motivated “double standard.”

The impact of this turn is serious. The recent raid on former President Trump’s home – an unprecedented, arguably unconstitutional turn – highlights and compounds the problem. Americans see it all and it gives them pause.

By way of a comparison, imagine fair turnabout. Imagine dozens of armed agents upending Speaker Pelosi’s home, Senator Feinstein’s home, or the 65 others suspected, for evidence of “insider trading,” as all 67 are suspected of abusing the public trust.

Imagine the White House itself or homes of President and Hunter Biden raided, turned upside down, boxes taken out – or the homes of both Clintons and their daughter, all ransacked.

Who knows what else might happen, homes of former Presidents, Attorneys General, FBI directors, IRS leaders, governors and mayors could be stormed, sacked, boxes taken.

Main point? We do not do that in America. We have a Fourth Amendment. Politics should not interfere with equal administration of the laws. A “double standard” for Democrats and Republicans is not just dishonest. It is illegal, unconstitutional, and killing public trust.

August 19, 2022 12:38 PM  
Anonymous Why do Trump and his boot lickers keep changing their story so much? said...

"The documents the FBI sought from Mar-a-Lago were reportedly very sensitive in nature and included materials related to nuclear weapons."

you keep repeating this dubious claim without any evidence

funny how you are always criticizing Trump for making a claim without evidence"

American media outlets aren't perfect, but they have a FAR better record of telling the truth - and importantly - admitting their mistakes when they are wrong.

Republicans have had 18 months to hunt down evidence of widespread election fraud and they have come up with bupkis. The few cases they have found have usually been perpetrated by republican voters. What we do know now is that there have been far more LIES about widespread election fraud than there has been actual voter fraud.

I'm not privy to nuclear secrets, or the sources that supposedly tipped off the media reports. But 18 months from now, I fully expect that what the media has reported in the last week is far more accurate than anything Trump and his cronies have had to say about it.

August 19, 2022 12:40 PM  
Anonymous Why do Trump and his boot lickers keep changing their story so much? said...

"In cases like former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s proven mishandling of classified documents... – no legal consequences."

Trump and his DOJ had 4 full years to abuse Hillary over this. The fact that they didn't forces one to conclude one of the following:

A) Trump and his DOJ were entirely incompetent an unable to prosecute these "crimes."


B) Despite all of the right-wing teeth gnashing and accusations, what she did didn't actually rise to the level of a crime.


C) They simply could not find enough actual evidence of a real crime to risk prosecuting her, and then losing in a court of law.

Given how many times Rudy lost his election fraud challenges, it seems unlikely that was a concern for them, and they had no problem "investigating" Hillary multiple times for Benghazi and finding nothing to charge her with. So A or B appears more likely.

August 19, 2022 12:52 PM  
Anonymous Why do Trump and his boot lickers keep changing their story so much? said...

"Polls show plummeting public trust, a sense that institutions are not acting fairly, are politically corrupt, and work under a politically motivated “double standard.”

Those polls are a measure of how well the ex Liar-in-Chief can manipulate the sentiments of right-wingers by claiming he's a "victim." He's a master at manipulating media, and getting all sorts of "free" media. That's how he got into office.

Polls don't affect whether he actually committed crimes or not, which is the real issue you keep trying to distract from.

"By way of a comparison, imagine fair turnabout. Imagine dozens of armed agents upending Speaker Pelosi’s home, Senator Feinstein’s home, or the 65 others suspected, for evidence of “insider trading,” as all 67 are suspected of abusing the public trust."

If they have evidence of crimes to level that meets or exceeds the threshold of what sent them to Mar-a-Lardo, then they should start sending agents out now.

US politicians have profited far too much by their access to insider business information, and their connections to large corporations. They no longer vote in the interest of the majority of US citizens, but rather for beck and call of the corporate oligarchy.

When politicians get into office they should have to trade in all of their stock investments in for a standard index fund; let them decide if they want S&P 500, NASDAQ, or some other one if they like - or spread them out to all of them. But buying and selling individual stocks should be illegal until they are no longer in office.

I'm all for more law and order being applied to the criminals in Congress. Maybe once some of them end up in jail they'll start behaving more like adults once they know their actions have consequences.

August 19, 2022 1:08 PM  

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