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Thursday, May 16, 2019

UNC board members tells male graduates, buy a nice ring for a woman, and both will increase in value



A Jesse Helms protege shared his Ozzie-and-Harriet worldview with UNC-Wilmington graduates at their graduation last weekend.

Tossing the one-minute welcome the university gave him to read, UNC governor Tom Fetzer, 64, launched into a six-minute lecture on "topics including continuing education, personal advice on finances, and technology," The Wilmington Star-News reported.

In his off-the-cuff remarks, Fetzer offered a view of life that would have made the late actor Doris Day weep with joy:
Let me just cut to the chase young ladies, there are only two things in this world you should borrow money for. Your continuing education and a house. Pay cash for everything else because it’s a depreciating asset and you will end up owing more than it is worth. And that is the road to ruin. Those are the parents clapping. Young men, I will add one thing to the list for which you may borrow money. A diamond ring. Because it will appreciate, and so will she.
Elected mayor of Raleigh in 1993, Fetzer spent six years seeking endless tax cuts, privatization of city services and arguing that arts funding was a waste of money. He then became a powerful lobbyist, land speculator, and political consultant to losing presidential candidates Elizabeth Dole, Newt Gingrich, and Marco Rubio.

He was elected state GOP chair in 2009 and, with gobs of money from dime store billionaire Art Pope, led the party to win control of the North Carolina General Assembly and gerrymander themselves into power for the next decade. The legislature, busy stacking the UNC board of governors with Republican pols while downsizing it to make the old white men feel more comfortable, appointed him in 2017.

Within a couple of months, Fetzer drafted and sent a letter chiding board chair Louis Bissette and system president Margaret Spellings for insufficient protection of a Confederate memorial on the UNC-Chapel Hill campus without showing it to 13 members.

He then joined a cabal of UNC board members to call for the board to create its own staff and move away from Chapel Hill to run the university system directly.
"The process of abandoning all beliefs, principles, values and policies in search of something in which no one believes but to which no one objects,” he said, reading Thatcher’s definition to the board on Sept. 7. “The process of avoiding the very issues that have to be solved, merely because you cannot get agreement on the way ahead.” 
Divisions in this board, if respectful, will be very helpful,” he said. “Raging internal conflict is a long-held American tradition, and I think even the casual student of history would have to agree that nothing great in this country occurred without a raging, raucous, robust, passionate debate beforehand.”
In 2018, Fetzer launched a private investigation of a candidate for chancellor of Western Carolina University and circulated the results to the board. He explained,
Upon reviewing the WCU candidate’s 50-page curriculum vitae, using an obscure and highly sophisticated investigative tool called Google, it took me all of two minutes to confirm an apparent misrepresentation by the candidate on page 1 of the person’s resume.
Then Fetzer hired a PI friend to investigate the candidate, who withdrew from consideration after having been vetted by two consulting firms and presented by president Spellings for approval. Fetzer admitted he had been recommended for the job himself and that his position on the board gave him access to the personal information he exploited.

Spellings, who got the presidency in 2015 after the board ousted a respected but Democratic incumbent, lasted only three years as the General Assembly turned the board over with new governors from the increasingly radical end of the state GOP and the legislature itself. She resigned n 2018.

In 2009, Fetzer- then 54- filed suit against a talk show host who forwarded a letter suggested he was gay.
Tom Fetzer, who served as mayor from 1993 to 1999, is running to be chairman of the North Carolina Republican Party. He said an anonymous letter was sent to GOP leaders claiming that he is a homosexual. 
Fetzer said Curtis Wright, a radio and television talk show host in Wilmington, forwarded the letter to the officials. Fetzer sued Wright and the stations where he works in May 2009. 
"I am not gay – never have been, never will be. There is absolutely no evidence whatsoever to support any of the scurrilous allegations made in the anonymous attack on me," Fetzer wrote in a letter to Republicans. "I will spare no cost or hardship in defending my good name. I intend to vigorously pursue legal action against any and all who spread these lies."
Fetzer married- " in a small wedding"- four months later.

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Pawns flock to Bishop in NC congressional do-over primary



Decades of data tell us that political primary voters are the most motivated, and ideologically strict- of all registered residents in any given district.

This is all the more so in gerrymandered districts, where, once a party has chosen and stuffed its nominee into office, voting becomes a ritual act for years- sometimes decades- thereafter.

North Carolina, for example, has ten Republican members of Congress despite routinely winning only half the vote. David Lewis, the chief gerrymanderer in the General Assembly, was candid in a 2016 presser: after federal courts struck down his plan for stacking minority voters in a few districts, he just redrew the lines to stack Democratic Party voters in a few districts.

Po-faced, Lewis said his plan rigged ten Republicans in place only because he couldn’t make it rig eleven.

The one hazard to gerrymandering is when a party long unused to competing picks bad candidates. NC Republican voters did that when they elected Robert Pittenger, a Campus Crusade for Christ organizer from Texas who found he’d rather harvest real estate than souls.

Pittinger barely won his seat in 2012, was unopposed in 2014 and won his 2016 primary by 134 votes. His stalker was Rev. Mark Harris, a Charlotte theocrat who promptly started running for 2018.

Humorless, self-regarding, and proudly homophobic, Harris was straight out of evangelical central casting, even preaching sermons telling women their job was to be a man’s “servant-lover.”

He spent vast sums to swing that 1000 votes he needed to defeat Pittenger, and then Democrat Dan McCready, in 2018; he just spent a lot of it on a vote rigging and suppression campaign in two rural counties at the eastern end of the Ninth.

Pittenger famously claimed “Jesus is my only constituent,” and there may have been something to the assertion. After the election, Harris developed a septic infection, then suffered two strokes he concealed until he got caught out lying about his knowledge of the corruption in his campaign. His avenging angel was his son, an assistant US attorney.

Suddenly Harris cited strike-induced memory lapses while under oath, and the state board of elections ordered a do-over of the whole vote.

Republicans spent decades in the congressional minority, collecting big paychecks and opposing everything because they couldn’t pass anything. They created the Fox News audience giving incendiary speeches in the empty House chamber at night on C-SPAN. After two years of controlling all branches of government under President Trump and still getting nothing done, they lapsed back into the minority last fall.

Little wonder, then, that ten Republicans filed to snag Pittenger’s empty House seat this year: it’d be inside work and no heavy lifting, just taking selfies at patriotic events in the district and angling for guest slots on Fox News. They included a Republican-turned-Democrat who ran for the supreme court last year; a man for ran for governor as a Democrat and a Republican; a former GOP legislator and failed gubernatorial candidate, and a doctor who has run for Congress every few terms since the 1980s without ever getting the voters' message.

Half of them don’t even live in the district.

Well, yesterday NC-9 Republicans spoke, and out of the ten hate-mongers in the buffet, they picked the worst.

NC State senator Dan Bishop of Charlotte promised he’d be Trumpier than Trump, would build Trump’s wall, and defeat the bogeyman of socialism who’d been hiding under everyone’s bed since the fall of Communism.

In Raleigh, Bishop was a zealot among zealots. As one account put it,

Shortly after he was sworn in..., he pledged to introduce legislation that would criminalize protesting against former elected officials, citing “ubiquitous leftist rioters” who had chanted “Shame!” at ex-Governor Pat McCrory for having signed the Bishop-sponsored HB2 into law. Then, in the wake of a series of student protests against alt-right speakers on the UC Berkeley campus, Bishop introduced a “campus free speech” bill that would have made it easier to punish students at publicly funded colleges for demonstrating on campus, while simultaneously rewriting the definition of “harassment” on college campuses in a way that would make it legal to discriminate against minorities, women, and individuals who identified as LGBTQ. And this spring, he sponsored a bill that would have both armed public school teachers and give them the authority to arrest their own students. 

Bishop also got outed as an investor in the online chat app Gab, a haven for American Nazis and domestic terrorists like Pittsburgh synagogue shooter Robert Bowers.

Bishop responded that he was the real victim, wondering why a British tabloid was going after him for taking a $500 flyer on a website whose content was a mystery to him despite his listing it as a follow on his Twitter account (he also tweeted that he bought into Gab because he was tired of “the Silicon Valley thought police.”)

But Bishop’s legacy is that he was the author of HB2, North Carolina’s infamous Bathroom Bill of 2016. It’s most discriminatory parts are still on the books, but Bishop says that’s all old news, we need to move on to new ideas and groups to hate on (oddly, Bishop failed to promote his support for the Trump Tariffs: having cost the state billions in lost business and reputation, he’s a natural for cheerleading the economic pain his and Trump’s trade wars will inflict on rural NC).

Having last chosen Mark Harris, who tried to ride a 2012 antigay state referendum into a 2014 US Senate election (he lost to the human weathervane, Thom Tillis), 9th district Republicans knew a winner when they saw one. Last night they picked Bishop, awarding him 47.7% of their votes.

24,677 Republicans turned out: about 10% of registered GOP voters. 7 of ten were over 65.

Among the also-rans- seven of the ten candidates won less than 1000 votes- number 2 was Union County commissioner Stony Rushing, a Dukes of Hazzard’s Boss Hogg impersonator anointed by Mark Harris and a Second Amendment evangelical.

Third place went to Matthew Ridenhour, a Mecklenburg County commissioner turned out of office last fall. His slogan was, “It takes a Marine to beat a Marine,” (the Democratic candidate, Dan McCready, was one) and it sounded both clever and butch until a radio debate last week in which an audience member asked, if that was true, why did he lose his council seat to “a female academic”?

(A side order of misogyny with an anti-intellectual glaze? Yes, please!)

My personal favorite came in fourth. Leigh Brown is a Realtor Registered Trademark Sign who doesn’t live in the Ninth but has been lusting for power for years, starting with an independent bid for NC governor in 2012. More recently, she gave money to several out of state liberal congressional Democrats, but mostly she slaved tirelessly as chair of the National Association of Realtors’ political action committee.

Having raised scads of cash from members, Brown rebranded herself as a gun-totin’, gated communities, North Carolina values conservative and held out her hands to her PAC. The realtors ladled $1.3 million into Brown’s campaign.

Another realtor-candidate, Kathie Day, must be sooo pissed.

Leigh Brown blanketed Mecklenburg County with TV ads (three of four voters in the district live there and in Rushing’s adjoining Union County). She was so ubiquitous she started to crowd out the car dealers on the evening news.

And yesterday, Leigh Brown received 2,624 votes.

The Realtors spent $495.42 per vote on her race, which is something to ask about the next time you’re negotiating one's commission.

See y’all in November!

Monday, April 8, 2019

Scandal-plagued NCGOP launches new voter registration drive



Torbett often like to rides his motorcycle down to South Carolina, where helmets aren't required.
"It's not the hair blowing in the wind. It's just the freedom to get out there and hear the noises," he said.
NC Rep. John Torbett, making his fifth try to repeal NC law requiring motorcyclists to wear helmets.
 

Fear of firing

The Acting President has added another acting cabinet member.


Friday, April 5, 2019

For fading Fox News stars, Sinclair Broadcasting is the new Branson; sex creeps welcome



Sinclair Broadcast Group, the nation’s largest TV station owner, rolled out its latest news and public affairs program this week, a one-hour broadcast called “America This Week” hosted by Eric Bolling.

If Bolling’s name is familiar, it may be because he spent a decade on Fox Business Network and Fox News, hosting opinion shows such as “The Five.” He left Fox in 2017; Sinclair hired him to host the new show, naming him its senior political anchor.

Bolling isn’t the only prominent former Fox personality to make the move to Sinclair, a company based in suburban Baltimore that owns 191 TV stations across the country, including WJLA, Washington’s ABC affiliate. Last month, Sinclair signed up former White House adviser and Fox commentator Sebastian Gorka as a contributor. In January, it hired veteran Fox reporter James Rosen, adding him to its Washington bureau.

The Fox-centric background of Sinclair’s new hires may be little more than a coincidence, but it could also reflect a mini-Fox-ification effort by Sinclair. Both have long aired commentary that appeals to conservatives.

“We look for people who have credibility and show a commitment to quality journalism,” a Sinclair spokesman, Rob Ford, said in a statement that made no mention of Fox. “For years, Sinclair has been one of the most honored and awarded broadcasters in the industry, and we are always looking for ways to expand our already impressive roster of talented journalists. We have hired talent from some of the biggest networks and will continue to seek out new additions wherever they exist as part of our commitment to bringing diverse viewpoints to our audiences.”

Fox and Sinclair compete for news viewers in different ways. Fox airs nationally via cable; Sinclair is more decentralized. Its stations broadcast in small towns (Elko, Nev.) and large cities (Baltimore, Seattle). Many of its stations produce their own local news programs, but Sinclair supplements these with commentary segments and news reports produced in Washington.

It often orders its stations to carry these segments on a “must-run” basis, giving its newscasts both a local and a national focus.

The company drew attention last year when a video went viral showing its many news anchors reading a seemingly Trump-friendly promotion about “biased and false news” from the same company-supplied script.

Sinclair’s chief political analyst, Boris Epshteyn, is a former Trump campaign and White House adviser who reliably sides with the president in commentaries that Sinclair distributes to its stations. Epshteyn appeared frequently on Fox and other cable networks as a Trump surrogate during the 2016 campaign and during the early days of the new administration. He also wrote opinion columns for Foxnews.com, although he was never employed by the network.

Sinclair’s national news reporting often stays close to Trump’s line, too. The day before the 2018 midterm elections, WJLA aired back-to-back interviews with the president’s son, Eric Trump, and an exclusive interview by Sinclair’s Washington bureau with the president. There were no equivalent interviews with Democratic candidates or party representatives.

Sinclair reportedly was gearing up to create a competitor to Fox News last year. At the time, it was on the verge of acquiring 42 major-market stations owned by Tribune Media for $3.9 billion and supposedly was considering converting one of the Tribune outlets, cable superstation WGN, into a news and commentary network. Among its rumored hires was Bill O’Reilly, who was forced out of Fox News in 2017 over sexual harassment allegations. Sinclair denied the reports at the time.

Any such plan was ultimately scotched by federal regulators, who delayed approval of the Sinclair-Tribune merger on regulatory grounds, leading Tribune to pull out of it and to sue Sinclair. Since then, there has been no sign of any effort by Sinclair to create such a network.

Bolling’s first show this week brought together his old Fox colleagues Gorka and Rosen as interview guests. Bolling also conducted interviews with Lara Trump, the president’s daughter-in-law and adviser to his 2020 campaign; Corey Lewandowski, Trump’s former campaign manager; and Stephen K. Bannon, Trump’s former White House chief strategist.

Bolling has also moderated televised town halls for Sinclair, including a discussion of the opioid crisis. Bolling’s 19-year-old son died of an overdose in 2017.

Both Bolling and Rosen — who was with Fox nearly 19 years — were forced out under controversial circumstances. Bolling parted ways with the network in 2017 a month after he was accused by three colleagues of sending unsolicited and lewd photos to them, as first reported by HuffPost. (He disputed the allegations.) Rosen was reportedly forced out for making “sexual advances toward three female Fox News journalists,” according to NPR, which also reported that Rosen was accused of groping a colleague in 2001 when they traveled together. (Rosen did not comment on NPR’s report.)

Neither Bolling nor Rosen responded to requests for comment from The Washington Post.

Gorka, who appeared regularly on Fox News star Sean Hannity’s show, said last month that he decided not to renew his contract with Fox because of his new gig with Sinclair.

His early projects for Sinclair included a 30-minute special last year about the failures of socialist regimes around the world titled “Inside Socialism.” Another Gorka-hosted special last year was titled “The Rise of Terrorism: A Clash of Cultures.” It featured Gorka, a hard-liner on immigration, asking viewers, “Can the teachings of Islam and Western values ever be reconciled? Is it possible for the waves of refugees arriving in the West to assimilate and coexist peacefully?”

Gorka’s hiring at Sinclair, however, apparently doesn’t preclude him from appearing on Fox. He told the Hollywood Reporter last month that “I’m still supporting Sean Hannity and other Fox shows as a free agent as my new schedule permits.”

The existential congressman



When you're a Republican congressman and your caucus puts you in limbo for being under indictment or too racist even for them, how to pass the days and between cashing paychecks?
Oh yes, and for almost all members of Congress, some time needs to be set aside for crafting legislation and preparing for (and attending) committee hearings. Almost all members, that is, other than King, and his two compatriots, Rep. Chris Collins of New York and Rep. Duncan D. Hunter of California, both of whom are under federal indictment and were booted from their committees. 
“It sucks,” said Collins, who noted that he plans to fill his time with caucus meetings — caucuses that include: the Toy Caucus, the Propane Caucus, the Battery Storage Caucus, and, for some reason, the Morocco Caucus.

Long Week in the Carolinas

March 31: a University of South Carolina student assumed the car that pulled up in front of a bar at 2 am was her Uber driver. She was very wrong.

March 31: Why are NC Republicans so fetishistic about charter schools?

For the girls at Charter Day School, a tuition-free charter school of 900 students in Leland, N.C., near Wilmington, the issue was equality. Girls were required to wear skirts, jumpers or skorts, which look like a skirt but include shorts-like fabric underneath. Boys, on the other hand, were required to wear pants or shorts.
Keely Burks, one of the students involved, was in eighth grade when the American Civil Liberties Union filed the suit on behalf of the girls and their guardians in 2016.
In a blog post at the time, she described how “distracting and uncomfortable” it was to have to pay attention to the position of her legs while sitting in class. She recalled when, in first grade, she and other girls were told by a teacher that they could not sit “crisscross applesauce” like the boys, but instead had to sit on the floor with their legs curled to the side.
She said in the post that she and her friends started a petition that garnered more than 100 signatures before it was confiscated by a teacher.
“Personally, I hate wearing skirts,” Keely wrote. “Even with tights and leggings, skirts are cold to wear in the winter, and they’re not as comfortable as shorts in the summer.”
If it were up to her, she wrote, she would wear pants or shorts every day to school. While some of her peers may still want to wear skirts, she said, “we should have a choice.”
The policy prohibiting girls from wearing pants or shorts was part of Charter Day School’s overall approach emphasizing “traditional values” in education, the judge summarized in his ruling. The school’s handbook said the dress code was in place to “instill discipline,” “promote a sense of pride and of team spirit” and reflect the standards of parents who choose to send their children to the school.
The school, which opened in 2000, aimed to foster a culture that preserved “chivalry and respect” among students, Baker Mitchell, the founder of the company that oversees Charter Day and other schools in southeastern North Carolina, wrote in an email to a parent about the uniform policy in 2015.
“The uniform policy seeks to establish an environment in which our young men and women treat one another with mutual respect,” he wrote, according to the email exchange, which was included in court documents.
March 31: Miss Lindsey launched a twenty-month fan-dance cabaret act for an audience of one. 



April 2: NC GOP Labor Commissioner Cherie Berry, who never managed to repeal the state minimum wage and issued a 2016 guidance memo that people who couldn't get to work because of a hurricane could legally be fired under the Tar  Hell State's right to work law, says she will not seek a sixth term in the service of business.

Berry, whose empire extends to many obscure niches of Carolina life, has become known as the Elevator Lady since she altered inspection certificates in every one of the state's elevators to include her photo and name in 2005.

In 2016, The Washington Post did a study of election results and found Berry's tax-paid campaign fliers pushed up her vote over that of other GOP candidates in more liberal NC counties where tall buildings- and more elevators- are.

Unlike the Queen of England, whose pictures on coins have been gently updated over her 67-year reign, Berry is forever the ingenue of 2005. She will now fade into obscurity, being confused in the grocery with the old lady on the Great British Baking Show.


*****

Dallas the Psychic


April 2: NCGOP is on a roll. Fresh off their triumphant cliff-dive in the 9th district congressional race, the party chair and its biggest sugar daddy have been indicted for trying to bribe the state insurance commissioner- another Republican.

WRAL-TV reports, "Executive Director Dallas Woodhouse tweeted moments ago that the party is aware "of the developments today in Charlotte" and will respond soon."



April 2: SC Attorney General Alan Wilson is high on life, as the evangelical killjoys say: 
In the Statehouse lobby, Wilson said of the medicine, “They use words like stoned, high, wasted, baked, fried, cooked, chonged, cheeched, dope-faced, blazed, blitzed, blunted, blasted, danked, stupid, wrecked — and that’s only half the words they use. Are these consistent with something that describes a medicine?”
What do they call an Oxycontin high?

April 2: In the NCGOP, scratch an evangelical pastor-turned-pol, and a scandal billows out.


#MAGAWeek 2



April 2: Elephants have the longest mammalian gestation period, and it still only takes them a year and a half:
Barrasso: “I’ve been working on a plan since the day I got to the Senate.”
Todd, with the punchline: "You’ve been in the Senate for 12 years."
The president promised a Republican health care replacement plan for those who live long enough to see if finally exist.

After nine years of trying to kill of the Affordable Care Act, the president declared the GOP would re-brand itself "the party of health care" and put Senators Rick Scott- a Medicare fraud king- and Senator JohBarrassoso, who said he has been thinking about how to replace Obamacare from the first day he arrived in office, in 2007, two years before President Obama as sworn in- in charge.

Today the president says that, although they have a great plan, the Republicans will hold it hostage against the American public giving Trump a second term in office.

Still looking forward to the End Times, evangelicals said they are willing to wait a bit longer for losing their health coverage. "We won't need it no more."


Then he sent out Sarah Sanders to walk back the closing of the Mexican border. #WINforTheGuacLobby

April 2: Say what you will about Joe Biden's grabbiness, but his tendency to talk without his mind engaged has made Donald Trump's federal court-rigging increasingly a breeze:
People are probably familiar with the back story, but I’ll recap: When Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia died in February 2016, McConnell and the Republicans quickly served notice that they would not even hold hearings on a replacement until a new president had been elected. They argued that precedent was on their side by pointing to the “Biden rule.” Essentially, then-Sen. Joe Biden (D-Del.) had argued in June 1992 against holding hearings before that year’s election if there had been a Supreme Court vacancy.
Imagine if Uncle Joe wins and a Supreme Court nomination comes up.

April 2: "Hours after the Senate voted down a disaster relief package that Democrats argued didn’t include enough money to help storm-ravaged Puerto Rico, President Trump took to Twitter on Monday night to lash out at the opposition party and the island’s leaders.


Trump, who has reportedly said in private that he doesn’t want “another single dollar” going to Puerto Rico in the wake of Hurricane Maria, again complained about funding for the island and called San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz, a frequent critic, “crazed and incompetent.”

“The Democrats today killed a Bill that would have provided great relief to Farmers and yet more money to Puerto Rico despite the fact that Puerto Rico has already been scheduled to receive more hurricane relief funding than any ‘place’ in history,” Trump tweeted around 11 p.m. “The people of Puerto Rico are GREAT, but the politicians are incompetent or corrupt.”


April 2: Teabaggist congressman, stuck in the minority, says he's headed for the Branson of politics.



April 2: The Big Penis Party will run against Alan Alda next year. #MAGA vs. #MASH

April 2: Sensing an opening for a short, elderly moderate white guy, Bloomberg takes a mulligan on The White House.

April 2: A Florida Trumpikazi congressman, Matt Gaetz, is opposing the LGBT Equality Act because he worries the president will use to declare he is a woman.

He also frets that men would use the opportunity to infiltrate women's groups advocating for the rights Gaetz opposes them having.

One might have thought he'd be down on the bill because The Gays might claim they are straight and want to watch the Super Bowl in a neighbor's man cave.



April 2: Why do celebrity golfers play golf with a man who does stuff like this?:
At Trump Bedminster in New Jersey, Trump once won a senior club championship from 87 miles away. He’d declared that the club should start having senior club championships for those 50 and up, but he forgot that one of the best players at the club had just turned 50. Having zero chance at beating the guy, he went up to his Trump Philadelphia course on the day of the tournament and played with a friend there. Afterward, according to a source inside the Bedminster club, he called the Bedminster pro shop and announced he’d shot 73 and should be declared the winner. The pro, wanting to stay employed, agreed. His name went up on the plaque. “But then,” says the source, “somebody talked to the caddy up in Philly and asked him what Trump shot that day. The caddy goes, ‘Maybe 82. And that might be generous.’ He pulls that kind of shit all the time around here.”

He's also the 1999 club champion at a club that wasn't open yet.



April 2: Hot on the heels of a whistle blower's disclosure that 25 White House employees denied security clearances for cause got them anyway, a Chinese babe has talked her way into Mar-a-Lago with two passports, four cell phones, and a thumb drive loaded with computer malware. She said she was just there to swim. Then she said she was there for a UN event. Then she said a friend in "Chy-ner" told her to do it.

April 3: Citing the success of Boeing's self-certification of airworthiness, the Trump regime is extending the concept to pork production. That is not a joke.

April 3: Trump's friend the president of Brazil emerged from an Israeli Holocaust museum declaring the Nazis were left-wingers because they used the word Socialist in their party name.

This jackassry is popular among US Repblicans, too.

Evangelicals salivate as God delivers unto them a presidential candidate they can openly gay-bash




Laura Ingraham, Fox News' mother superior of blonde news babes, has daily meltdowns on her program that the network packages and sends out like free online college course lectures.

She has a particular and long-standing animus toward The Gays. NBC News reported,
The conservative firebrand has also compared same-sex relationships to incest, equated transition-related care to “child abuse” and suggested people would rather wear “adult diapers” than share a restroom with a transgender person.
Her gay brother, Curtis, has called her a soulless monster.

In her defense, Laura Ingraham has written that she was way worse before:
Laura Ingraham had previously apologized in a 1997 op-ed for the Washington Post for her anti-gay actions while editor of Dartmouth’s right-wing The Dartmouth Review. In the 1980s, the paper infiltrated a meeting of gay students, some of whom were closeted, and outed at least one of them, labeled them “sodomites,” and published excerpts and quotes from the meeting.
Ingraham wrote that “in the 10 years since I learned my brother Curtis was gay, my views and rhetoric about homosexuality have been tempered,” particularly after watching Curtis “and his companion, Richard, lead their lives with dignity, fidelity and courage.”
Ingraham also wrote that she had helped Curtis cope “as his partner fought bravely to stave off death from AIDS.”
But Curtis told Daily Beast that any tempering of Laura’s views was reversed as she leaned more heavily into her religious views, including telling him that she would “agree to disagree” with him about same-sex marriage and other issues.
And that's not the half of it.  Jeffrey Hart, the faculty adviser for The Dartmouth Review described Ingraham as having "the most extreme anti-homosexual views imaginable", claiming "she went so far as to avoid a local eatery where she feared the waiters were homosexual".

Little surprise, then to see that she is bustin' corset stays at the prospect of a gay president.

Here's what she snarked on April 2. Let's fisk it. My comments are in italic.

Laura Ingraham: Why new 'It' Democrat Pete Buttigieg is just another media creation - and why we should beware

Three weeks ago, we showed you how the Democrat infotainment complex launched Beto O'Rourke into the political stratosphere, complete with a glossy, beautiful Vanity Fair feature.

On October 24, 2014, Alan Eustace became the record holder for reaching the altitude record for a manned balloon at 135,890 ft (41,419 m). Dr Eustace also broke the world records for vertical speed skydiving, reached with a peak velocity of 1,321 km/h (822 mph) and total freefall distance of 123,414 ft (37,617 m) – lasting four minutes and 27 seconds."

O'Rourke is at the low end, where jet airplanes fly: Every poll since the Vanity Fair cover shows him stuck between third and fifth among Democrats running. In The Atlantic, Edward Isaac-Dovere confirms Ingraham's result but not her alleged malign media motive: "O’Rourke has shot forward to low double digits in the polls, ahead of most of the people who beat him into the race, and appears to retain about the same level of popularity across age groups and other demographic breakdowns. Media coverage of him raises his name identification, and name identification raises his poll numbers, and raising his poll numbers raises his media coverage, and all that helps his mammoth fundraising, so he might just be able to will his dream into reality.

The former Texas congressman was a hot political pin-up with an impressive fundraising haul. He went from Texas Senate race loser to a modern-day matinee idol, complete with legions of adoring female fans.

A pin-up model (known as a pin-up girl for a female and less commonly male pin-up for a male) is a model whose mass-produced pictures see wide appeal as popular culture. Pin-ups are intended for informal display, i.e. meant to be "pinned-up" on a wall. Pin-up models may be glamour models, fashion models, or actors. These pictures are also sometimes known as cheesecake photos. Cheesecake was an American slang word, that was considered a publicly acceptable term for seminude women because pin-up was considered taboo in the early twentieth century.

The term pin-up may refer to drawings, paintings, and other illustrations as well as photographs (see the list of pin-up artists). The term was first attested to in English in 1941; however, the practice is documented back at least to the 1890s. Pin-up images could be cut out of magazines or newspapers, or on a postcard or lithograph. Such pictures often appear on walls, desks, or calendars. Posters of pin-ups were mass-produced and became popular from the mid-20th century.

Male pin-ups (known as beefcake) were less common than their female counterparts throughout the 20th century, although a market for homoerotica has always existed as well as pictures of popular male celebrities targeted at women or girls. Examples include James Dean and Jim Morrison.

Matinée idol is a term used mainly to describe film or theatre stars who are adored to the point of adulation by their fans. The term almost exclusively refers to adult male actors.

Matinée idols often tend to play romantic and dramatic leading or secondary leading roles and are usually known for having good looks. The term can be taken as faintly pejorative in that it suggests the star's popularity came from the afternoon matinée performances rather than the "big picture" evenings and, hence, a less discriminating audience. Matinée idols often become the subject of parody during the height of their popularity, an example being Stan Laurel spoofing Rudolph Valentino in his film Mud and Sand.


Now a somewhat old-fashioned term, the phenomenon reached its height from the 1920s to around the 1960s in Hollywood. "Teen idol" is a similar term, which more often refers to youthful musicians rather than film actors. The term differs from "sex symbol", which refers to a star's sexual attractiveness in and outside of film more so than their romantic performances on the screen. A sex symbol, however, may also be a matinée idol.

Invoking terms of the World War II era, Ingraham is playing to the Fox News base of viewers, whose average age is from 65 to burial. Her rant's title is reminiscent of the Hollywood term "It Girl"- an attractive young woman, generally a celebrity, who is perceived to have both sex appeal and a personality that is especially engaging.

The expression it girl originated in British upper-class society around the turn of the 20th century. It reached global attention in 1927, with the popularity of the Paramount Studios film It, starring Clara Bow. In the earlier usage, a woman was especially perceived as an it girl if she had achieved a high level of popularity without flaunting her sexuality. Today the term is used more to apply simply to fame and beauty.

Fox News meat puppets and their viewers love their innuendos- and silent dog whistles, too- and Ingraham's invocation of ancient terms applied to celebrity women sends low-frequency thrills up the legs of elderly conservatives, who often refer to LGBT people as "it": a hat-tip to deviancy and sexual confusion.

While O'Rourke did raise a ton of cash- $70.2 million, over twice his opponent's- he didn't deploy it effectively enough to move the needle much in a race against a uniquely unattractive and disliked incumbent, Ted Cruz. The closest he came was three points in midsummer 2018. It took Cruz until October 10 to crack the 50% line:



In the end, Cruz won by seven.

"He went from Texas Senate race loser to a modern-day matinee idol..."? 

In just four months?

But soon, it seemed like a sleight of hand, all of it --  or maybe just hand flailing.

"...the association of limp wrists with male homosexuality was very well-established in the United States by the beginning of the 20th century. A pair of postcards from around 1910 show limp-wristed men saying things like, “Sweet perfume of Violets! What a charming policeman.” In a Canadian postcard from the middle of the century, a dainty gentleman points, limp-wristed, at a police officer and asks, “Is it true you fellows always get your man?” At some point—certainly by the early 20th century, but maybe even earlier—gay men co-opted stereotypical postures and hand gestures as a way to signal their sexual orientation. In a 1919 homosexuality trial in New Hampshire, for example, the judge asked a witness how gay men identified each other. The witness said a gay man “acted sort of peculiar, walking around with his hands on his hips… the expression with the eyes and the gestures.

"In his controversial instructions on how to deal with gay-acting children, Pastor Sean Harris picked up on a recurring theme in popular culture: how to train apparently gay men to assume stereotypically heterosexual mannerisms. In the 1956 film version of the play Tea and Sympathy, for example, a college student tries to teach his roommate how to walk like a heterosexual man. The same scene occurs in the 1996 film, The Birdcage, in which Robin Williams repeatedly strikes Nathan Lane’s hand in an attempt to make him appear more masculine."

Ingraham is puffing furiously into her dog whistle again here. An article of faith at Fox is that LGBT Americans are just another client group of the Left.

Then came the gaffes about being a part-time parent and his apology for his privilege. And didn't you just start feeling exhausted by it all? And I think in this weird news cycle, Beto already kind of seems like yesterday's news.

Why attack one candidate when you can hit two in one column, even while claiming one is on the skids? Ingraham has been whaling away at O'Rourke for weeks: news fatigue is one problem Fox News fans do not have. She even re-runs the same story under different headlines to keep the pot boiling, as we see from this rant running twice in a day:



Meanwhile, the newest darling of journalists, Hollywooders and metro-lefties is the mayor of South Bend, Indiana. Meet 37-year-old Pete Buttigieg -- Navy reservist, Harvard grad, Rhodes Scholar. And he's a married gay man, which means if he won the presidency, it would be a presidential first. And remember America likes firsts.

The coastal elites, I don't think they've ever loved a Midwesterner as much as they love Pete. He's a charmer.

Buttigieg is an Indiana native. He lives in Indiana. Indiana is part of the Midwest. While he probably will run, as of the date of this hit piece Buttigieg wasn't an official candidate yet.

"He is disarmingly charming," said CNN's Ana Navarro. "He's got this, like, you know, like almost like an innocence about him, but at the same time he is an intellectual."

Oh, Ana, he's beyond intellectual. He's so different from what we have now. He's "knowledgeable about the issues" and has a "good, positive spirit." And yes, he's humble. Leftists and never-Trumpers across the land are falling in love. But pronouncing his last name, that's another issue altogether.

Here Laura switched to the 'Foreign, Bad' Worry Whistle.

All right, Mayor Pete smartly makes light of his last name. But what do we really know about the new "it" boy? Well as mayor of South Bend, he spent tens of millions of dollars on infrastructure.

See "It Girl", above.

President Trump ran on the promise of a trillion-dollar infrastructure plan. In office, he declared "Infrastructure Week" so many times it became a punchline. But when one attaches "infrastructure" to "liberal", Fox viewers think "light rail." Or-

He imported a lot of lime bikes, which a lot of locals abhor. And he seems to have trouble keeping track of the homicide numbers in his city.

Lime is a bike and scooter rental company. A capital L is therefore appropriate. As of the end of February 2019, there were 140 of their bikes in South Bend, with five downtown and the rest around the Notre Dame campus. The company has been switching them out for scooters over the last year reducing numbers from 3,000. "LimeBike in 2017 introduced its shareable bicycles to South Bend, the third city in which it had launched at that time. Users pay and track the bikes through a smartphone app. Many riders embraced the convenience of the bikes, but residents also complained about vandalized bikes and those left randomly on sidewalks or in front of homes.

"In May, the company announced it had changed its name from  Limebike to Lime, to reflect its expansion from bicycle sharing to scooters and electric bikes. At that time, Lime did not signal it would ultimately offer only electric vehicles.

"But it has recently started doing just that, either entirely pulling out of cities that only allow pedal bikes or switching to only e-scooters and e-assist bikes in markets that allow them, including the San Francisco Bay Area, Seattle, St. Louis, Tacoma, Wash.; Hartford, Conn.; Starkville, Miss.; and Rockford, Ill."

As for the murder rate, in 2015 the city recorded 17 in a population of 101,000.  It ranked 29th among the top 30 cities in Indiana. In 2018, there were 12. Conflating transit boondoggles with crime is a popular conservative trope. As the Duke of Wellington famously said of crime control, "Trains would only encourage the lower classes to move about needlessly." 

South Bend is a Republican town. Yet they re-elected Buttigieg overwhelmingly- after he came out as gay.

Don't be fooled by the carefully curated public image. Pete Buttigieg believes in a set of policies that would set back our economic gains and take money out of the pocket of people who work for government programs that don't. He would upend the Constitution to ensure that California-New York trumps the views of Heartland Indiana every time.

Buttigieg is certainly really smart. He worked at Mackenzie -- it's a global consulting company -- after finishing at Oxford.

It's McKinsey, dear.

Now he says he's a traditional Episcopalian, whatever that means these days.

"Now? As opposed to?" Ingraham's comment seems odd unless you follow evangelical media. See, e.g. Erick Erickson, "Mayor Pete Buttigieg Apparently Thinks Jesus Would Be Okay With Beastiality," The Resurgent, April 4, 2019. Erickson, the former head of the hard-right website Red State, also called unmarried former Supreme Court justice David Souter “a goat fucking child molester.”

In an interview with the conservative Christian Post, Buttigieg explained what "traditional Episcopalian" meant: "When asked when was the last time he prayed he said he prayed in Church on Ash Wednesday in the morning but noted it is an activity he finds challenging.

“I find prayer challenging. I’m liturgically conservative. I like to pray in church when we are all saying prayers at the same time because I think that’s a communal act of tuning our hearts a certain way. I have trouble with the traditional formats for prayer just because I have trouble, I mean grammatically,” he said.

“Grammatically when we pray we are in the imperative mood which means we’re telling God what to do. I get that there’s a lot more to prayer … but personally I think prayer is mostly about making sure that I am tuned. The prayer that makes the most sense to me is that may we delight in Thy will and walk in Thy way which is what we’re supposed to be, not telling God what he’s supposed to do,” he added.

New York Times columnist David Brooks  downsplained it even more: "He speaks comfortably about his faith and says that when he goes to church he prefers a conservative liturgy to anything experimental."

The "Now" modifier is pure innuendo- more of that "Other" stuff Fox so loves. Ingraham is a Newt Gingrich Catholic: both traded up from Southern Baptist moral stuffiness about sex.

And in a New York Times column, neocon moralist David Brooks, in full fanboy mode, writes, "Buttigieg is gay and personifies the progress made by the LGBTQ movement, but he doesn't do so in a way that feels threatening or transgressive to social conservatives. He has conservative family values. It's just that his spouse is a husband, not a wife."

Well, first of all, I don't know how many social conservatives David Brooks actually knows or interviewed for this column but Buttigieg's support for abortion on demand doesn't qualify.

Brooks explained his conclusion in his column:

"It’s important to remember that when Democrats vote next year, they’ll not only be choosing a policy alternative to Donald Trump, they’ll also be making a statement about what kind of country they want America to be.

"The Trump era has been all about dissolving moral norms and waging vicious attacks. This has been an era of culture war, class warfare and identity politics. It’s been an era in which call-out culture, reality TV melodrama and tribal grandstanding have overshadowed policymaking and the challenges of actually governing.

"The Buttigieg surge suggests that there are a lot of Democrats who want to say goodbye to all that. They don’t want to fight fire and divisiveness with more fire and divisiveness. They don’t want to fight white identity politics with another kind of identity politics.

"They are sick of the moral melodrama altogether. They just want a person who is more about governing than virtue-signaling, more about friendliness and basic decency than media circus and rhetorical war.

"Buttigieg’s secret is that he transcends many of the tensions that run through our society in a way that makes people on all sides feel comfortable.

"First, he is young and represents the rising generation, but he is also an older person’s idea of what a young person should be. He’d be the first millennial president, but Buttigieg doesn’t fit any of the stereotypes that have been affixed to America’s young people.

"Young people are supposed to be woke social justice warriors who are disgusted by their elders. Buttigieg is the model young man who made his way impressing his elders — Harvard, Rhodes scholar, McKinsey, the Navy.

"Young hipsters are supposed to flock to coastal places like Brooklyn and Portland; after college, Buttigieg returned to Indiana.

"Young people are supposed to be anti-institutional, but Buttigieg is very institutional — his life has been defined by his service to organizations, not his rebellion against them.


"Second, he is gay and personifies the progress made by the L.G.B.T.Q. movement, but he doesn't do so in a way that feels threatening or transgressive to social conservatives. He has conservative family values; it’s just that his spouse is a husband, not a wife.

"...Finally, he’s a progressive on policy issues, but he doesn’t sound like an angry revolutionary. Buttigieg’s policy positions are not all that different from the more identifiable leftist candidates. But he eschews grand ideological conflict."

By concluding Buttigieg "deftly detaches progressive policy positions from the culture war. He offers change without Sturm und Drang," Brooks' column was one of his "faint praise" specialties, warning his readers that Buttigieg is the Mike Huckabee of the Left: putting a smiley face on policies his readers will abhor. Ingraham is all about anger and Manichean opposites. It's a wonder she didn't call Brooks limp-wristed, too.

As for Brooks, his column drips the same sort of "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner?" condescension that people used to use when they talked approvingly of "qualified minorities."

As they did with Obama, the media is attempting to take a novice with limited experience and wrap him up in a warm, fuzzy, personal narrative. As with Obama, Buttigieg's parents were radicals. His father, whom he describes in his memoir as a man on the left, was a Notre Dame literature professor.

To Ingraham, "the left" included Senator John McCain. Republicans are obsessed by their comparative purity. At the end of Mach, 2019, The New York Times reported that Jessie Liu, Trump's nominee to be deputy attorney general, withdrew her nomination:
Senator Michael Lee, Republican of Utah, led the opposition to Ms. Liu’s nomination, on the grounds that she was not a conservative enough choice, according to a law enforcement official with knowledge of the debate.
NPR added,
Two sources told NPR that the attorney general got into a "shouting match" with Utah Republican Sen. Mike Lee, a key figure in opposing Liu's bid. 
Four lawyers familiar with the matter said the stumbling block for Liu was a broader concern about her conservatism — specifically, her stance on women's reproductive rights. Interest groups had begun drafting letters to senators about their fears that Liu would not support restrictions on abortion. Another key factor: Earlier in her career, Liu had an affiliation with the National Association of Women Lawyers, which sent a letter opposing the nomination of Justice Samuel Alito to the Supreme Court. 
Philip Alito, a son of the justice, works for the antitrust subcommittee in the Senate, a subcommittee that is chaired by Lee.
On April 5, 2019, another remarkable example hit the streets:
President Trump said Friday he is looking for someone “tougher” to lead the country’s top immigration enforcement agency, hours after the White House unexpectedly withdrew its nomination of Ronald Vitiello to lead U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. 
Asked why he had jettisoned Vitiello, the current acting director of ICE who had been scheduled to accompany him on a trip to the border Friday, Trump told reporters: “We’re going in a little different direction. Ron’s a good man. But we’re going in a tougher direction. We want to go in a tougher direction.” 
The move blindsided lawmakers, Department of Homeland Security officials and others across the administration who said Friday they could not fathom why the president would pull his ICE nominee at a moment when U.S. government officials are saying the nation’s immigration enforcement system is at a “breaking point.” 
...The president’s previous nominee to lead ICE, Tom Homan, languished without confirmation for months until finally stepping down in frustration. The White House picked Vitiello, a 30-year veteran of Border Patrol, as its nominee in August.
He seemed a perfect fit- a former never-Trumper turned lickspittle who had a nice turn for racist tropes:
During the 2016 presidential campaign, on Twitter, Vitiello compared Trump to the cartoon character Dennis the Menace and in another post likened Democrats to the Ku Klux Klan. During his confirmation hearing, Vitiello apologized for the tweets and said they were meant as jokes. 
In recent months, as unauthorized border crossings have soared to their highest levels in more than a decade, Trump immigration policy adviser Stephen Miller has been criticizing Vitiello to the president and looking for an opportunity to cut him loose, according to one senior administration official who works on immigration enforcement matters. 
...“Stephen wants to put Attila the Hun as director of ICE,” said the official, who believes Miller is seeking to install someone closer to him in the top ICE job.
So, that's great, but according to the Washington Examiner, Joseph Buttigieg was a committed Marxist, who affectionately embraced the Communist Manifesto and worked to "inject Marxism into the wider culture."

He was a Maltese, not a Marxist. One of his scholarly fields was the works of Antonio Gramsci (1891-1937), "an Italian Marxist philosopher and communist politician. He wrote on political theory, sociology and linguistics. He attempted to break from the economic determinism of traditional Marxist thought and so is considered a key neo-Marxist. He was a founding member and one-time leader of the Communist Party of Italy and was imprisoned by Benito Mussolini's Fascist regime.

"He wrote more than 30 notebooks and 3,000 pages of history and analysis during his imprisonment. His Prison Notebooks are considered a highly original contribution to 20th-century political theory. Gramsci drew insights from varying sources – not only other Marxists but also thinkers such as Niccolò Machiavelli, Vilfredo Pareto, Georges Sorel and Benedetto Croce. The notebooks cover a wide range of topics, including Italian history and nationalism, the French Revolution, fascism, Fordism, civil society, folklore, religion and high and popular culture.

"Gramsci is best known for his theory of cultural hegemony, which describes how the state and ruling capitalist class – the bourgeoisie – use cultural institutions to maintain power in capitalist societies. The bourgeoisie, in Gramsci's view, develops a hegemonic culture using ideology rather than violence, economic force, or coercion. Hegemonic culture propagates its own values and norms so that they become the "common sense" values of all and thus maintain the status quo. Hegemonic power is therefore used to maintain consent to the capitalist order, rather than coercive power using force to maintain order. This cultural hegemony is produced and reproduced by the dominant class through the institutions that form the superstructure." One can see why Trumpists find him annoying.

The Washington Examiner article's authors cherry-pick quotes to make Buttigieg senior a Communist without understanding their context. One can study and comment on radical ideas without advocating their implementation, after all. And as a role model for worldwide revolution, Gramsci is poor. He spent a long time in Mussolini's prisons and died without a single idea having been carried into practice.

Buttigieg's fields of study are better understood through the correct end of the telescope. An obit noted, "His research specializations included “modern literature, critical theory and the relationship between culture and politics,” the release said. He penned several articles and a book on James Joyce titled, “A Portrait of the Artist in Different Perspective.”

As for Buttigieg's mother, who taught at Notre Dame for 29 years, no source seems to identify what commie-symp field in which she taught.

Pete was close with this father, which you can expect, but which will lead, of course, many voters to wonder how far the apple fell from the tree. It's a question he's going to be asked on the campaign trail, but come on, why fixate on any of that? Does it really matter?

The Examiner article- and the Examiner is a hyper-conservative paper- explains. One assumes Ingraham's staff writers skipped over the bits contradicting her demanded outcome: 

"Pete Buttigieg, an only child, shared a close relationship with his father. In his memoir Shortest Way Home, Pete called his dad a “man of the left, no easy thing on a campus like Notre Dame’s in the 1980s.”

"He wrote that while he did not understand his parents’ political discussions as a young child, “the more I heard these aging professors talk, the more I wanted to learn how to decrypt their sentences, and to grasp the political backstory of the grave concerns that commanded their attention and aroused such fist-pounding dinner debate.”

"Lis Smith, communications adviser for Buttigieg’s presidential exploratory committee, declined to comment on how his father influenced his political beliefs or on Pete Buttigieg's thoughts on Marxist thinkers such as Gramsci.

"Pete Buttigieg said in an MSNBC interview on March 20 that he considers himself a capitalist but that the system needs changes.

“The biggest problem with capitalism right now is the way it's become intertwined with power and is eroding our democracy,” Buttigieg said, noting the influence of big businesses in government."

David Brooks says he is awash in conservative family values, and despite having never held state-wide office...

President Trump never held an office of any sort whatever, and evangelicals praise him as having been chosen by God. Other presidents who never held statewide office, Ingraham's touchstone, include Eisenhower, Hoover, Taft, McKinley, Garfield, Buchanan, Fillmore, Taylor, John Adams, George Washington, and- as the president likes to call him, "the late, great Abraham Lincoln."

...Buttigieg has something else going for him, "He's a progressive on policy issues but he doesn't sound like an angry revolutionary. He eschews grand, ideological conflict."

See above e.g. Mike Huckabee.

God, this reads like an old ode to Obama that Brooks wrote. Didn't he write the same exact thing about Obama? The aura and the historic nature of the man is far more important than the substance -- kids get used to it.

Did he? We'll never know from her. If he had, seems like she'd quote it, as she does another Brooks column, above.

But ignore all the gauzy profiles and you find Buttigieg is pretty much a garden variety leftist. He's kind of common...

The most favorable definition of "common" is "without rank; ordinary; of the most familiar class". As used by ragers on the Right, it includes "of inferior quality, low-class; vulgar."  Yet see also, "Buttigieg is certainly really smart. He worked at Mackenzie -- it's a global consulting company -- after finishing at Oxford", and "As with Obama, Buttigieg's parents were radicals. His father, whom he describes in his memoir as a man on the left, was a Notre Dame literature professor.", above.

and soft-spoken, for sure...

See, "limp-wristed" above.

but this is what he supports: the Green New Deal, a wealth tax, single-payer health plans, amnesty for certain illegals, packing the court with more than nine justices and getting rid of the Electoral College.

The Merrick Garland approach to court-packing is much easier. But for the latest models approved by the Right, click here. the Gren New Deal isn't even a law, but ideas alarm the Ingrahams of the world in a time when presidents declare Republicans are the party of health care- for a week.  

On the tax front, Fortune reported in February that "Support for raising taxes is widespread, according to a new poll, which found that 76% of registered voters want the wealthiest Americans to pay more."

61% favor eliminating the Electoral College.

"Certain immigrants"? That's what Trump people call DACA, which the president supports from time to time.

So, don't be fooled by the carefully curated public image.

See also, "Don't be fooled by the carefully curated public image", above.

The guy believes in a set of policies that would set back our economic gains and take money out of the pocket of people who work for government programs that don't. He would upend the Constitution to ensure that California-New York trumps the views of Heartland Indian every time.

"Indiana," dear.

Last August, he derided President Trump as basically a "disgraced game show host." And on Vice President Pence, he said this: "a social extremist the likes of which our country has not known in national politics."

In law and logic, the truth is a defense.

Wow. So much for those conservative family values.

When did idolatry become one? As for modeling such values, Ingraham's discards include uber-liberal former MSNBC host Keith Olbermann, former New Jersey Democratic Senator Robert Torricelli, family values adulterer and campaign finance law felon Dinesh D'Souza, and George T. Conway, attorney and husband of Kellyanne Conway.

There will now be a slight pause for silent reflection.

Beyond his boy scout demeanor...

It's Boy Scouts, dear. You have also denounced the Boy Scouts as being run by "gender benders" for admitting girls while citing mixed-gender clubs as normal: "It's another reason why Trump won," she added. "Boys should be able to have a boys club. Girls should be able to have a girls club. And if they want to have a club where boys and girls are doing activities together, that's fine too."

...and Mayor Peach schtick,...

There is no Mayor Peach ("Mayor Pete"?), but ignorance and  slovenly proofreading are Fox News punchlines:



Buttigieg is but another creation of a media apparatus desperate to oust Trump. It's the same reason they built up AOC and Beto - to whip up the Democrat base, keep them excited, keep them engaged.

Are those two over already?

Anything to divert voters' attention from the growing 401Ks, bigger paychecks and all that good news that happened because of Trump's policies.

One imagines people can see and read their paystubs, along with the 55 million Americans with 401k programs. On the other hand, if one assumes news is propaganda, this makes sense.

Oh, and another thing: The cool fact that Cool Pete speaks seven languages doesn't change the fact that socialism doesn't work in any of them.

Buttigieg speaks Norwegian, Spanish, Italian, Maltese, Arabic, Dari, and French. 

Norway is cool: 



Spain's political system is a multi-party system, but since the 1990s two parties have been predominant in politics, the Spanish Socialist Workers' Party (PSOE) and the People's Party (PP). ... The Economist Intelligence Unit rated Spain as a "full democracy" in 2016.

Italy has a mixed economy made largely of a free market with dwindling command economy elements. The political system allows for the private sector to own and control the countries resources and the means of production, and the prices and wages are established by supply and demand. After WW2, the economy, like the country, had to emerge from the rubble. By agreement with the Allies, the country instituted new political freedoms which allowed for economic freedoms as well. This opened the way for substantial economic growth through the 1960's but this stopped in the 1970s as the world's economic stagflation hit Italy hard. To combat this, Italy nationalized many industries and businesses, and begin heavy regulation of certain aspects of the economy including the financial industry. These efforts paid off, and by the late 1990s, many of the command elements began to be reduced as many of the public companies were sold to private investors. Today, Italy has the third-largest economy in the Euro-zone and the sixth richest in the world in terms of per-capita GDP. Politically, it is an unstable democracy, with a multiparty system that makes it difficult to hold office for long. While Italy has had 61 governments since World War II, since 1994 nearly all have been conservative, and the current one enjoys the favor of President Trump as being bigly in his image.

Malta has a competitive socialist party. It has a stable parliamentary democracy. It is also very small.

There are no socialist Arab states. The Arabist Bernard Lewis (1916-2018) stated: "Nobody seems to have a good word to say for Arab socialism. Commercial, professional, and middle-class elements bring against it the usual complaints which are brought against socialism in Western countries. Left-wingers dismiss Arab socialism with contempt as a half-hearted and inefficient compromise which has the merits neither of socialism nor of capitalism." Mostly it is academic nationalist wankery; in practice, it is authoritarian. President Trump is fond of the most authoritarian states in the region, which makes them not socialist.

Because Dari is one of two official languages of Afghanistan, it is not a socialist nation.

France is capitalist with a relatively high amount of government intervention. This would then be a combination of free market capitalism with some state capitalism thrown in. As President Trump often reminds us, much like the United States. But we are mindful about what the Right said about John Kerry's multilingualism. 

All deliberate speed



February 15, 2019:

The current situation at the southern border presents a border security and humanitarian crisis that threatens core national security interests and constitutes a national emergency. The southern border is a major entry point for criminals, gang members, and illicit narcotics. The problem of large-scale unlawful migration through the southern border is long-standing, and despite the executive branch’s exercise of existing statutory authorities, the situation has worsened in certain respects in recent years.

In particular, recent years have seen sharp increases in the number of family units entering and seeking entry to the United States and an inability to provide detention space for many of these aliens while their removal proceedings are pending. If not detained, such aliens are often released into the country and are often difficult to remove from the United States because they fail to appear for hearings, do not comply with orders of removal, or are otherwise difficult to locate.

In response to the directive in my April 4, 2018, memorandum and subsequent requests for support by the Secretary of Homeland Security, the Department of Defense has provided support and resources to the Department of Homeland Security at the southern border. Because of the gravity of the current emergency situation, it is necessary for the Armed Forces to provide additional support to address the crisis.

Now, therefore, I, Donald J. Trump, by the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including sections 201 and 301 of the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.), hereby declare that a national emergency exists at the southern border of the United States, and that section 12302 of title 10, United States Code, is invoked and made available, according to its terms, to the Secretaries of the military departments concerned, subject to the direction of the Secretary of Defense in the case of the Secretaries of the Army, Navy, and Air Force.

To provide additional authority to the Department of Defense to support the Federal Government’s response to the emergency at the southern border, I hereby declare that this emergency requires use of the Armed Forces and, in accordance with section 301 of the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1631), that the construction authority provided in section 2808 of title 10, United States Code, is invoked and made available, according to its terms, to the Secretary of Defense and, at the discretion of the Secretary of Defense, to the Secretaries of the military departments. I hereby direct as follows:

Section 1. The Secretary of Defense, or the Secretary of each relevant military department, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, shall order as many units or members of the Ready Reserve to active duty as the Secretary concerned, in the Secretary’s discretion, determines to be appropriate to assist and support the activities of the Secretary of Homeland Security at the southern border.

Sec. 2. The Secretary of Defense, the Secretary of the Interior, the Secretary of Homeland Security, and, subject to the discretion of the Secretary of Defense, the Secretaries of the military departments, shall take all appropriate actions, consistent with applicable law, to use or support the use of the authorities herein invoked, including, if necessary, the transfer and acceptance of jurisdiction over border lands.

March 29, 2019:

Trump, while speaking to reporters at an event at Lake Okeechobee in Florida, accused Mexico of choosing not to stop migrants coming to the U.S. southern border.

"If they don't stop them, we are closing the border," Trump said. "We will close it and keep it closed for a long time."

"I'm not playing games," he added.

Trump's comments to reporters came after he threatened in a tweet to close the border next week if Mexico does not take action.

"If Mexico doesn’t immediately stop ALL illegal immigration coming into the United States throug [sic] our Southern Border, I will be CLOSING...the Border, or large sections of the Border, next week," the president wrote in a series of tweets.

April 5, 2019:

Facing widespread opposition, President Trump backed down Thursday from his threat to close the southern border, instead giving Mexico a “one-year warning,” but also leaving his administration with no clear path to deal with a record surge of migrant families.

Trump had issued an ultimatum on Twitter late last week that he would move to seal the border to trade and travel if Mexican authorities did not halt illegal immigration.

The president’s pronouncement, coming amid reports that the U.S. Border Patrol was at the “breaking point,” surprised White House aides and sparked fear among Republican allies and business leaders over the potentially devastating economic impact of closing the 2,000-mile border with the nation’s third-largest trading partner.

In the days after his tweet, Trump and his senior advisers issued conflicting signals about his intentions, with some aides privately expressing befuddlement over his strategy. The president offered no public details, and aides worked behind the scenes to craft a plan that would satisfy Trump but minimize the economic harm.

Those efforts were rendered moot Thursday when Trump, in an exchange with reporters at the White House, suddenly shifted gears, saying that if Mexico does not stem the flow of drugs and migrants into the United States within the next year, he will impose first tariffs of 25 percent on cars and then, possibly, close the border.

“We’re going to give them a one-year warning, and if the drugs don’t stop or largely stop, we’re going to put tariffs on Mexico and products, particularly cars,” Trump said. “And if that doesn’t stop the drugs, we close the border.”

Later in the afternoon, ahead of a trade meeting with Chinese officials, Trump praised Mexico for “doing a very good job in the last three or four days since we talked about closing the border,” even though Mexican authorities have said they have not altered their enforcement policies.

April 5, 2019:

President Trump said Friday he is looking for someone “tougher” to lead the country’s top immigration enforcement agency, hours after the White House unexpectedly withdrew its nomination of Ronald Vitiello to lead U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Asked why he had jettisoned Vitiello, the current acting director of ICE who had been scheduled to accompany him on a trip to the border Friday, Trump told reporters: “We’re going in a little different direction. Ron’s a good man. But we’re going in a tougher direction. We want to go in a tougher direction.” 

The move blindsided lawmakers, Department of Homeland Security officials and others across the administration who said Friday they could not fathom why the president would pull his ICE nominee at a moment when U.S. government officials are saying the nation’s immigration enforcement system is at a “breaking point.”

...The president’s previous nominee to lead ICE, Tom Homan, languished without confirmation for months until finally stepping down in frustration. The White House picked Vitiello, a 30-year veteran of Border Patrol, as its nominee in August.

...During the 2016 presidential campaign, on Twitter, Vitiello compared Trump to the cartoon character Dennis the Menace and in another post likened Democrats to the Ku Klux Klan. During his confirmation hearing, Vitiello apologized for the tweets and said they were meant as jokes.

In recent months, as unauthorized border crossings have soared to their highest levels in more than a decade, Trump immigration policy adviser Stephen Miller has been criticizing Vitiello to the president and looking for an opportunity to cut him loose, according to one senior administration official who works on immigration enforcement matters.

...“Stephen wants to put Attila the Hun as director of ICE,” said the official, who believes Miller is seeking to install someone closer to him in the top ICE job.