Oh this is news…

As the house votes on its inquiry

With thanks to a long time reader who kindly informed us of something we didn’t realize and want to share with you.

“There are some rules that apply for Senate behavior during an impeachment trial. Among those rules are these. No member of the Senate can engage in campaigning during a Senate trial. That means Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, Kamala Harris, Cory Booker and Amy Klobucher would be off the trail.”
We didn’t realize that and since an impeachment trial could drag on for a month does that mean they will be locked up that long? I assume they can get out for the weekend, but a long trial can’t make them happy.
Of course others like Mayor Pete, Beto and VP Biden could stay out there.

We did some research on this and Intelligencer wrote this:
“The standing Senate rules do require a fairly expeditious beginning for impeachment trials after the House has passed articles of impeachment, so it’s not like Mitch McConnell can deviously get it rolling the night of the Iowa Caucuses. But if the House really doesn’t get its part done until well into December, you could easily see a trial running through the critical pre-Iowa stretch of frenzied activity. The Clinton trial, which was about as cut-and-dried as any presidential impeachment trial could be, lasted from January 7 until February 12, 1999. Let’s say for the sake of argument a Trump trial begins and ends precisely on those dates in 2020. It would encompass both the Iowa Caucuses (February 3) and the New Hampshire primary (February 11). If it started later or ran longer, it could directly interfere with the Nevada Caucuses (February 22), the South Carolina primary (February 29), or — worst-case scenario — the 12 states (including California and Texas) holding primaries or caucuses on Super Tuesday (March 3).

I wonder if the Democrats thought this through since the chances of the senate convicting is so slim.

one election update

This week Amy Klobuchar became the ninth candidate to make the November debate stage. She joins Joe Biden, Cory Booker, Pete Buttigieg, Kamala Harris, Bernie Sanders, Tom Steyer, Elizabeth Warren, and Andrew Yang.
Of those at the last debate, Julian Castro still has zero qualifying polls, Tulsi Gabbard and Beto O’Rourke each have two. 
Candidates have until November 13th to qualify for the debate on the 20th in Atlanta, Georgia.

Impeach, Impeach, Impeach

impeach

You can’t turn on any news outlet without the headline being impeachment, impeachment, impeachment. It’s a frenzy and you can sense the excitement in many over it. So what’s the real story?

Well if you’re confused you’re not alone. Everyone is, I think even those leading the charge for and against it are. The facts as best as I can simplify are these:

After the failed Mueller probe on collusion the immediate movement was to the other facet of Mueller’s report that were obstruction discussions he did not address. You remember the Nadler hearings day after day? What happened to that? We were told that all those obstructions were impeachable after the no collusion.

While that was hot and heavy came this “whistleblower” saying that the President had committed an impeachable act in a call with the Ukraine President. They said he used “quid pro quo” to hold up payments for an investigation on his potential 2020 opponent. That was impeachable.

Well then the administration released the call transcript and you can read it for yourself. I did not see the “quid pro quo”. I think the accusers agree now because they are not talking “quid pro quo” in the call anymore. Now it’s in the request and actions taken.

They then begin hearings to get the evidence they need and the secrecy becomes an issue. You have defenders saying this is a kangaroo court and we can’t call witnesses.
Now we are moving to the next step. A vote tomorrow on Halloween. A vote on impeachment? No. It will be a vote to do the inquiry they are doing now. I think the media confused a lot of people with this vote.

Follow all that? First it was impeach (for three years) on collusion, then for a month and half on obstruction, followed immediately by a quid pro quo, that has become “based upon his words and actions”. You might get the impression from this that it is all about impeach for any reason.

Where are we ending up? Well the vote will be completely on party lines and the hearing will go forward albeit more in public. Other than that not much will change. You hear that Republicans can now call witnesses, and Adam Schiff will be one. That’s not true. You see, witnesses called must be voted upon by the committee. His fellow Democrats will not allow him to be called and they have the majority.

Bottom line then is where does it go? I can only guess:
I see the Democrats are determined to vote to impeach. They are passionate and focused on this.
I don’t see any way based upon the current evidence the Senate convicts.
So who wins and loses in that scenario?
The President gets the stain of impeachment on his record and that hurts him forever. His own mannerisms created this.
The house will look very prejudicial and will put some of them in jeopardy in 2020. A non senate conviction will make them look zealous and hurt many.
The MSM will decry the Republican Senate and blame them, unable to separate their personal feelings from what they see as the evidence.
Respect for our institutions will decline. Future generations suffer for this.

Is there a way out?
The only way I see is what we reported at the outset of this. The hearings lengthen and finally the house leaders say “with the 2020 election upon us let the American people decide”.
They can save face, and run on the position that the President is a loose cannon and not fit for the role.
If they go to a vote and get ridiculed in the senate they can be hurt.

some other quick news thoughts

Susan Rice, she of the Benghazi video tape lie, said yesterday that Donald Trump was wrong not to inform President Obama of the Baghdadi killing.
Haven’t the Democrats found every which way to Sunday to attack the President on the attack and success of it?

Joe Biden said this about the President and Syria: (Washington Post)
“Biden lamented that Trump’s own friends and officials have essentially tricked him into leaving some troops in Syria by telling him he could control the oil there and referred to a U.S. official telling The Post: “This is like feeding a baby its medicine in yogurt or applesauce. It’s like dealing not with a commander in chief, but a whiner in chief,” said Biden. “It’s bizarre.” 

Speaking of Biden. I know the NYT this AM said he and his son did nothing wrong in the Ukraine, but since the House is investigating that country why not include what happened with them? Oh, outside impeachment, we don’t want any other facts, I see.
As for the NYT they didn’t say why Hunter got paid hundreds of thousands and never had to attend a meeting, do anything or represent the company anywhere. I guess if he did nothing the NYT thinks there’s nothing to investigate or see. I wonder what Pelosi and Schiff think.

Finally…

baghdadi

The news of the weekend changed late Saturday night when the President tweeted that “something big just happened”. From that tweet to the sweet news that Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi had been hunted down and sent on his way to meet his maker, it was the news of the day.

We applaud and salute those who planned the operation, the intelligence agencies that dedicated their lives to finding him, and the great military operators whose bravery, skill and coverage must be treasured by us all.
The world is a better place this morning with Baghdadi gone, and though he will be replaced, a message has been sent again, America will not forget and hunt you down.

reactions

The MSM was caught by surprise and had to revise their planned Sunday news show focus on impeachment. What made it worse for them is the President went on TV literally at the same time their Sunday news shows were to start. They were ready for impeachment and got Baghdadi.

Nancy Pelosi had this to say: “The House must be briefed on this raid, which the Russians but not top Congressional Leadership were notified of in advance, and on the Administration’s overall strategy in the region.” 
Two things on this:
First the Russians were not informed about what we were doing. They were informed we were flying helicopters over their troops to avoid conflict and people getting killed. To tell people what you did is misleading and just shows your obsession with the President and Russia.
Second you know why the President didn’t tell you? For the same reasons you are doing things in secrecy right now to impeach him. Payback is tough isn’t it?

Next the headline in the Washington Post was incredibly ridiculous. If you didn’t see it, this is what it said:
Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, austere religious scholar at helm of Islamic State, dies at 48″.
To call this brutal murderer an “austere religious scholar” is beyond words. This was a sick, depraved person who burned people in cages, had heads cut off and brutalized so many. Religious scholar?

The military operation was named for Kayla Mueller. She was a humanitarian aid worker who the terrorist leader captured and tortured in every way possible until her death in 2015.
Here’s what her Mom said “I still say Kayla should be here, and if Obama had been as decisive as President Trump, maybe she would have been.” Doubt you’ll see her on the MSM.

some additional News

Adam Schiff was on a morning news show yesterday and said that A.G. Barr is “weaponizing the investigation”. I had to stop and make sure I heard that right. Barr is being aggressive Adam? Let me ask a question:
We had three years and close to $50 million spent on a Russia Collusion investigation that said there was none. So now we have the A.G. appoint a Special Investigator to see how that rumor and charge came about .That’s weaponizing? Three years of chaos, division and false charges and we shouldn’t know how it began? I think you weaponized the false charges and we want to know how it started.

We keep asking why can’t we pass USMCA since it is a good deal for America and will create 180,000 jobs? Do you know that Mexico and Canada are our number two and three trading partners? Combined they are double China. Yet congress can’t pass this bill that the other two have already approved and is good for America? The Democratic law makers when questioned say this is a “priority” for Nancy Pelosi.
So I ask you this. You see impeachment and how that is moving? Which do you think is Nancy’s priority? The USMCA is languishing with her for a year. That’s priority?

Democratic Senator Katie Hill announced she is resigning yesterday. If you followed that story she was caught up in a sexual relationship story with a staffer, and someone (presumably her ex husband) released photo’s. She had won one of those Trump district seats last year. It will be up for grabs in 2020.
What’s most interesting about the story is this. It wasn’t until last year that the House changed its rules to prohibit relationships between members and their staffs. Think about that. They did it address male lawmakers. Isn’t it ironic the first one to fall afoul of the rule is a woman, and a bisexual woman, at that.

Long time Congressman John Conyers passed away over the weekend too. He co-founded the Congressional Black Caucus in 1969 and sponsored a bill to establish the Martin Luther King Jr. Day holiday. He is one of only a handful of people to serve in Congress for at least 50 years. I watched MSM coverage and they lauded his work as a civil rights person and his long time service, as they should have. Know what I didn’t see? Why he left a few years ago. Sexual harassment charges. That’s part of the record folks.

Finally today the European Union extended yet again Britains exit from it to Jan. 31. It’s time for Parliament to move on. The people voted.


One Thing…

one thing today

Since the whole Russian collusion story broke there have been underlying questions about the origin of it. This was escalated when the Mueller report came back and said there was no collusion. The question then was, well wait how did it start?

Before and after the Mueller report the MSM and major newspapers like the NYT and Washington Post called charges that the whole investigation was a crime by others, “a hoax”. They said it was a “Fox News and Right Wing Conspiracy”. You no doubt have heard that many times.

Well last night the story breaks that the investigation by John Durham (who the left liked until now), was moving from investigation to a criminal inquiry with subpoena power. That means that after months of investigation and visits to foreign countries they found reason to move forward.

Thus like many believed, there may well be something to what went on with the Steele Dossier and FISA Court requests and that whole theory. (FISA by the way is Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court).

So what does the NYT and MSM do today? How will they present this? After all they never covered it, just called it a “conspiracy” if someone brought it up. What would they do?
Well here’s what this AM brought as the lead story in the NYT:

Justice Dept. Is Said to Open Criminal Inquiry Into Its Own Russia
Investigation
By KATIE BENNER and ADAM GOLDMAN
The move is likely to open the attorney general to accusations that he is
trying to deliver a political victory for President Trump.

In the story they write:
“The opening of a criminal investigation is likely to raise alarms that Mr. Trump is using the Justice Department to go after his perceived enemies. Mr. Trump fired James B. Comey, the F.B.I. director under whose watch
agents opened the Russia inquiry, and has long assailed other top former law enforcement and intelligence officials as partisans who sought to
block his election.” 

The Morning news shows on the MSM followed that lead and questioned the whole thing. They are convinced that A.G.Barr is doing this to divert attention and protect the President from all the bad news. This is not real, it is just coverup by the evil administration. John Durham the Prosector they loved and trusted? They never mentioned him, this was all Barr. (But his day is coming, stay tuned).

There you have it. Incredible. A story they refused to cover, denied it had any truth, called it a conspiracy and refused to believe anyone associated with the Obama and Clinton teams could possibly do anything wrong is coming home. How to cover it? Call it another Trump team conspiracy.

America has to decide in 2020 what kind of country we want.

Musings….

just some musings today

What impact is impeachment going to have on the 2020 election? No one knows today, but the risks for both sides is monumental.
The Democrats have bet it all on impeachment. They come out with no (or phony) charges and they are done.
For Republicans if they have vote to acquit against real charges they are cooked.
Right now, after rereading the transcript, I don’t see it, but they are trying.

The next Democratic debate (Nov 20) is less than a month away. Thus far these eight have qualified for it. The others have until Nov. 13th to do so.
Qualified:
Joe Biden, Cory Booker, Pete Buttigieg, Kamala Harris, Bernie Sanders, Tom Steyer, Elizabeth Warren, and Andrew Yang.
Close:
Amy Klobuchar is one poll short of qualifying, Tulsi Gabbard is two short, Beto O’Rourke is 3 short. Julian Castro is four short.

Klobucher and Gabbard will make it. The later, thanks to Hillary.
Beto should make it but Castro may very well not.

NBC has the debate and named four women moderators for it. They are Andrea Mitchell and Kristen Welker from NBC. Rachel Maddow from MSNBC and Ashley Parker from the Washington Post.
Excited?

The latest CNN Poll has this for the Dems:
Joe Biden is widening his lead on the field. He is at 34 percent with Elizabeth Warren second at 19. A 15 point lead for Biden!
They are followed by:
Sen. Sanders at 16 percent. 
Mayor Buttigieg and Sen. Harris both at 6 percent.
Then a drop to 3 percent for Sen. Klobuchar and Beto O’Rourke.
Andrew Yang pulled in 2 percent support.
All other candidates polled at 1 percent or less.

The lack of a belief that any (barring an impeachment) can beat the President is leading to an increased look at “who else” might run. Judge Judy today has an article out endorsing Michael Bloomberg, and don’t you hear more and more about Hillary?
The other names mentioned this week are: John Kerry, Senator Sherrod Brown, former A.G. Eric Holder and Gov. Deval Patrick.
Stay tuned to this, because the Democratic hierarchy is truly concerned about the 2020 election.

For his part Joe Biden returned to “his hometown” of Scranton Pa, to deliver a rebuke of Mr. Trump’s economic policies and values. Basically he appealed to the working class voters who helped propel the President to victory and told them the President failed them – the working American.
Well if you look at manufacturing jobs created in the Biden eight years (a negative) and the Presidents three years (a positive), that is a tough argument. Then add wages and job availability and it gets even tougher. (Thus impeachment).

A quiet issue, that in past was headlines is this:
The government is running out of funding, with the current stop gap spending (called a continuing resolution), set to expire Nov. 21.
Legislators on both sides don’t want this issue, or shutting down the government, with the election only a year away.
Watch for them to quietly pass a short term spending measure to keep the government open.

What happened to all that idealogical belief they all had?
Where did the fire go?
Imagine if some said how about we spend within means?

Finally today get ready for the next administration attack.
The author of that anonymous column in the New York Times in 2018, (who was identified as a senior Trump administration official acting as part of the “resistance” inside the government), has written a tell all book to be published next month.
Watch the sensational here and how the MSM runs with it.

The New Middle East…

The President will speak at 11 today on Syria and the Middle East. I am guessing he will claim victory, tout the cease fire and say everyone is happy.

Syria, Turkey, Iran and Russia might be, but someone should check with the Kurds. I don’t think they quite are. They have though, completed the withdrawal of the safe zone during the cease fire period.

Now here’s the new world order in the Middle East:

Russia and Turkey reached an agreement to take control of the territory once held by Kurdish forces. (Northeastern Syria).
Under this new pact, Russian and Syrian forces oversee the withdrawal of Kurdish fighters.
This agreement further strengthens Russia’s ties with Turkey (A NATO Member), and shows the shift in the areas balance of power.
After their departure, Turkey and Russia will join forces to patrol (and control) the area. (300 miles).
One more key point here.
The agreement bolsters Russia’s support of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. He can now regain control over more of his country’s territory. It was why Russia went into the area to start.

So we have a new power player in the area and it’s Russia.

We’re out of the Middle East right? Not quite.

Defense Secretary Mark Esper met this week with the king of Saudi Arabia as the U.S. does a troop buildup there. (This is part of the agreement the President touted as one Saudi Arabia is paying us for).

What’s the end result?

Well on day one Russia is the power player in the area. Turkey gets what it wants. Assad gets to survive and is beholden to Russia. The Kurds lose.
So, it looks like clear winners and losers right?
Except this is the middle east and the divisions are so great that the minute you think you have it under control bombs start exploding. So let’s see.

The main question for the U.S. now is do the other players in the area still trust us? Saudi Arabia is so scared they are paying us to stay. What about the others? Egypt? Iraq? Qatar?
Add this, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan said he has reduced the number of American troops in the country in an effort to boost military efficiency. This on top of the failed talks with the Taliban.

The area remains violable and needs a steady, thoughtful approach as we proceed. What is not needed is another shoot first plan later move, by the President.

Some other news and thoughts

With close to 95% of the MSM coverage on the President and administration remaining negative it is difficult for the nation to calm and catch a breadth.

Yesterday there was major noise about the President using the word “lynching” referring to the probes of him. Major news all over the airwaves.

Yet did they tell you that Biden, Kerry and so many others used the same word (which they the MSM supported) in referring to the Clinton impeachment? They are shameless in their reporting just assuming the average viewer is too dense to see through it.

Meanwhile:

We get selective releases from the closed door “inquiry” on whether to impeach the President. Think about that. If this were reversed and the President a Democrat and congress Republican, would the media be doing what it is? I don’t think so, they would condemning every aspect of the “secrecy”.

The fact that congress slowed the timeline to bring this up tells you the story is not falling in place as they thought it would. You would never know this watching the MSM.

Another Monday…

We start the week after the President and administration took another bashing on the weekend news shows.
Just take notice of the interruptions, tone of questions and how the hosts go after guests and you can determine their leanings. Outside of Maria Bartiromo on Sunday Futures, it sure seems they all are anti administration.

Now the administration does not help as it continues to shoot itself.
Mick Mulvaney was on a number of shows and did little to recover from his remarks earlier in the week. He was attacked on them with his own words..
I think he compounded things by saying, the President is in the hospitably business in defending the Doral choice for the G7.
Really? He’s President now Mick.

The backing off Doral as the site illustrates again how impulsive the President is. In choosing Doral it was clear that it would lead the left and MSM to talk about personal profit. They would never cover what he has lost as President.
Just a dumb move that they have to back away from, but gives the public exactly the impression they didn’t want.

If politics and public opinion is based upon messaging: |
Then this administration is a failure. They continue focusing on the negatives, things people talk about when the economy is good, jobs are available and we are at peace. Not bread and butter issues.
Think about that.
So instead of a steady administrative message of growth, jobs, increased income and a bright future, the President is bogged down in mindless issues and ego connected defenses.
Politicians are masters at messaging.
This President and administration are not.

An Example. There are only 23 days left in this legislative session.
Shouldn’t the President and team be out there daily beating the drum for the USMCA? It should be an all day message that congress is failing to pass a bill that is good for the U.S. and will create 180,000 more jobs. Why the silence? And, why are they waiting for Nancy to pass it and take credit for doing it?
Does anyone in the administration know how to play the game? This is a winning message, winning program and America wants it. Where are they?

This is interesting.
Former Rep. Sean Duffy (R-Wis.) has joined CNN as a contributor. It will interesting to see his role. He is a strong right leaning individual and it will interesting to see his air time and use.

Latest Democratic poll from Iowa:
It showed Mayor Pete Buttigieg moving into the top three. The poll was taken after Tuesday’s debate and had Joe Biden at 18%, Senator Warren at 17% and Buttigieg at 13%.
Probably a reflection of his debate performance, the attacks on Biden and his son, Bernie’s heart attack and the challenges to Warren.

Speaking of Senator Warren she said:
She is working on how to fund her medicare for all program. Wait, you proposed something, said the middle class would save money and now are figuring out what it cost?
Am I missing something here?
You better check that free college and other stuff too.

Did you see these reports today:
President Trump is weighing leaving a small number of troops in Syria. How can that be was my first thought. Then I remembered, this President is shoot first, then aim and consider. You would think after three years he would learn.

Finally today an example of liberal thought and action.
In NYC, Mayor de Blasio’s plan to shut the Rikers Island Prison by 2026 has been approved by the city council. Now the plan is to replace and it with four smaller, borough based jails. In the end the city plans to have 1,000 less cells.
It’s part of the plan supporting recently enacted criminal-justice reforms to shrink the city’s jail population (currently about 7,000 inmates) to 3,300 by 2026.
The Mayor said this:
“Today we made history! The era of mass incarceration is over. It’s over!” 
A Republican council member in voting against it said:
“Thus, it will require putting more potentially dangerous offenders back on the street, jeopardizing public safety”.

What do you think?

SHOOT, AIM – OH WAIT!

This administration continues to do damage to itself. Look at yesterday:

BOOM:
Chief of Staff Mike Mulvaney goes out to clear things up and he creates a mess. He tried clarifying and backtracking later, but he linked the decision to hold up aid to Ukraine to the desire for a probe into the DNC server and 2016 election.
Way to help. Just give the left and MSM more fodder.

BOOM:
In his anger at the W.H. meeting with Pelosi and Schumer this week the President called General Mattis “overrated” as a military person. Really? The man you called “Mad Dog” you are attacking? The man who wrote a book and wouldn’t talk about you?
Mattis spoke last night at the Al Smith Dinner in NY. Here’s what he said:
“I’m not just an overrated general. I am the greatest, the world’s most overrated. I’m honored to be considered that by Donald Trumpbecause he also called Meryl Streep an overrated actress. So I guess I’m the Meryl Streep of generals. And frankly, that sounds pretty good to me.” 
Then he took this shot at the President (and his deferment):
“I earned my spurs on the battlefield; Donald Trump earned his spurs in a letter from a doctor.” 

And this is why the President doesn’t have the loyalty back from people that other Presidents did. They all know he will turn on them in a second and bury them. Leaders simply do not do that.

BOOM:
The W.H. announced that Energy Secretary Rick Perry is going to step down. Why? Well his name has come up all the time in this Ukraine mess and he is under investigation. He has been called to testify.
Of course it happens as the President heads into Perry’s home state to campaign.

BOOM:
Then there was this story out of Italy, where AG Barr has been investigating the tie to the 2016 election and the infamous Joseph Mifsud.
“The Italian government has determined that its intelligence services had no connection to a Maltese professor who told a Trump campaign adviser in 2016 that the Russian government had thousands of stolen emails that could damage Hillary Clinton’s candidacy”. This according to two senior Italian intelligence sources with knowledge of the matter.
“In a series of meetings in Rome over the past two weeks, high-level Italian intelligence officials have repeatedly told cabinet members and a parliamentary oversight committee that the intelligence services did not have a relationship with Joseph Mifsud, a mysterious ex-diplomat who was a professor at a Rome university in 2016”.

BOOM:
The President announced the next G7 Summit would be held at his Doral Club. Now let me explain this. I have been to that club for meetings on many occasions, it is ideal. Yes he said he would do the meeting at cost, no profit. But, you had to know that the left and MSM would be all over it and add it to their charges of his “personal gain” in office. It just fed the beast to attack.

What you won’t hear on the MSM is this.
According to Forbes, “hotel revenues at the Trump National Doral, arguably the Donald’s golf flagship, have dropped like a stone since Trump became president. Revenues at the Trump Doral in 2017 fell an astounding 16 percent.  and the resort lost 100,000 booked-room nights”.
The resort has only 643 rooms and revenue has been plummeting at the property since Trump announced for President. A consultant for the Trump Organization told Miami-Dade County tax officials in late 2018 that the resort was “severely underperforming” when compared with comparable hotel properties in South Florida.

When you hear the President is profiting from the office it is wrong. His properties have lost revenue and value. The Trump Organization has stopped building outside the U.S. to avoid issues. The President hasn’t even taken a dime in salary as President. The press won’t tell you this and the left will hammer him for proftiting, which is a shame; but he fed them this opportunity by choosing Doral.

So the administration gave the MSM plenty of material yesterday, and that’s before the continued beatdown on the Syria pullout.

was there Other worthy news?

Yes, but it was drowned out by their shoot first then aim approach.

The President has taken this strong stand on China as we all know. He has continually said that China is being hurt far more than us. The MSM hasn’t exactly backed him up. Well yesterday there was this news:
China’s economic growth slowed even more. China’s economy grew 6% in the third quarter as business activity continued to deteriorate. 
Not much coverage of this as the MSM focused on the negative.

Today is Mark Allen’s funeral. He was the soldier gravely wounded in trying to find and “rescue” Bowe Bergdhal. He was so wounded that he was never able to talk and function again. Did you hear anything about it on the MSM or see them cover this?
Do you think if the President this happened under was Trump you would have seen a lot on it? Especially since there was a claim “no one” was killed in the operation and we traded terrorists to get back a traitor?

Have a great weekend.

A Major News Day…

major news breaks all day and night

There were major events over the past 24 hours that will have lasting impact.

First the death of Rep. Elijah Cummings was a surprise.
Cummings was a major voice who made an impact in the House. He was heading a committee in the impeachment inquiry. May he rest in peace. He was only 68 years old.

The possible Brexit deal is big.
If passed there will be a major U.S. and England trade deal announced. It will further the restructuring of trade under this administration. I can’t say what the exit will mean to England, but I can say it will be a boost for the U.S.
By the way, what should not be lost in this is the difference between this administration and the past one. President Trump supported the Brexit exit and wants a new trade deal on day one. President Obama warned England if they vote to leave they would go to “the bottom of the list”.
Let’s see if the MSM remembers this.

On Turkey it was quite a day.
The WH meeting certainly got news. According to whom you believe either Nancy Pelosi or President Trump were out of their mind. Maybe the whole situation in Washington is.
The American voters in 2020 have to fix this and decide what direction and kind of country we want.

The situation in Syria is dire and at a crossroad.
V.P. Pence and Secretary Pompeo are in Turkey as I write this to meet with Erdogan.
This is complicated but consider this:
Erdogan is tough and has long wanted to attack across the border.
It is clear to me he was going in now, whether we stayed or left.
President Trump did not want another Mideast conflict.
His problem is he pulled the troops and made the decision without consultation with anyone.
His tendency to act alone harms him with the military and congress.
His gut that this is not our fight and we don’t belong there is right.
The way he did it, leaves him open to criticism.
Now what are his opponents saying? He was wrong to pick up and leave?
What is there solution? Do you hear what they would have done?
We all accept we don’t want ISIS to reform, but what would they have done if Turkey came across the border?
When you hear the criticism, listen for what they would have done and would do now. They never say. Only that Trump was wrong.
Where were Nancy and Chuck when Obama called ISIS the JV? Right behind him then.
Where were they when the previous administration did not enforce the red line in Syria? Right behind them then.
Now they are hawks?
The President’s biggest mistake was acting alone after a call with Erdogan and not asking or seeing what congress and the military had to say.

Here’s an example of how quickly and surprisingly we left:
On Wednesday, the U.S. military said two F-15E jet fighters carried out an airstrike to destroy an ammunition-storage facility, latrines, tents and other parts of the Syria headquarters of the American campaign to destroy Islamic State after pulling its forces from the base.
Col. Myles Caggins, a spokesman for the U.S.-led coalition overseeing the fight against Islamic State, said the airstrikes were intended to ‘reduce the facility’s military usefulness.
Sounds more like a retreat than a withdrawal doesn’t it?

Did you see the President’s letter to Erdogan?
He was clear in his threat to him. The question now is what will Turkey do and how do we react? If they continue the assault we need the heaviest of sanctions and NATO needs to join us.
The same NATO that refused to guard the border with us when asked.

The Democratic debate on Tuesday:
Drew only 8.3 million viewers. This was down from last month’s debate and not good news for them.

I know the polls show Joe Biden is still at the top but:
I remain convinced he is in big trouble. You know the old “follow the money”, well check this out:
In the last quarter his campaign spent almost $2 million more than he raised. This was caused by sluggish fundraising coupled with the expenses of maintaining a big payroll and a nationwide operation.
His cash on hand sum of $8.9 million is so low that it’s almost four times lower than the $33.7 million banked by Sanders, nearly three times lower than Warren’s $25.7 million war chest and more than twice as small as Pete Buttigieg’s $23.3 million.
Joe is in trouble. At the bottom of this blog is a list of all quarterly reports.

Remember Bowe Bergdahl who deserted and became a campaign issue?
Well they kept saying no one died trying to save him to defend the past administrations moves at “rescue” and then pardon. Here’s what happened yesterday:
A retired soldier who was shot in the head while searching for US Army deserter Bowe Bergdahl in Afghanistan a decade ago has died of complications from the injury, according to reports.
Master Sgt. Mark Allen, of Loganville, Ga., was severely wounded in 2009 when he and other troops looked for Bergdahl, an Army private who deserted his post and was captured by the Taliban.
Allen, who died Saturday at age 46, was shot during an insurgent ambush in 2009, when he was left paralyzed over much of his body after suffering a traumatic brain injury.
His wife, Shannon Allen, told WSB radio she did not learn about the circumstances surrounding her husband’s injuries until 2014, after former President Barack Obama negotiated Bergdahl’s release in a swap for five Taliban members held at Guantanamo Bay.

Allen’s funeral is Friday.

Third Quarter fundraising reports for the Democratic candiates:
Steyer: $49.6 (all but $2 million of that was from the candidate himself)
Sanders: $25.3 
Warren: $24.6 Buttigieg:
$19.1 Biden:
$15.2 Harris:
$11.6 Yang:
$10Booker:
$6 Klobuchar:
$4.8 O’Rourke:
$4.5 Williamson:
$3 Bullock:
$2.3 Bennet:
$2.1Delaney:
$870KRyan:
$430KSestak:
$370KMessam:

Debate…

The debate had no major candidate flub or breakout moment but some significant observations.

Elizabeth Warren has risen steadily in past polls as she avoided any counter attack. Last night she got attacked and had a rougher night.

The Medicare For All Program has the same problem the Republicans and administration have had, how do you pay for it? You have heard us for years say, you cannot insure (Bernie said there are “87 million under and uninsured”) people and not drive up costs for all. Bernie said taxes are going up, Warren said no for the middle class. One is telling the truth.

Everyone was for higher taxes on the “wealthy”. The problem with that is this. Once a tax is in place the government spends the money and the lower in the tax brackets it goes.
Which is another issue, no one ever talks about in either party, cutting spending and maybe one day balancing the budget.

The moderators asked a softball question on Syria. Of course the President was wrong, thank you to the twelve who reiterated that. Wouldn’t it have been nice to know what they would have done? Wouldn’t it have been nice to ask them when President Obama withdrew if they felt the same and he made a mistake?

I’m sorry they didn’t ask about China. Where do they stand and what would they do with the standoff now? Do they agree with Biden that China is not an issue? How come China got so bad while they where all in Congress? Did they see this mess coming? What did they do to stop it?

While on the subject of trade wouldn’t it have been nice to ask where they stand on USMCA and if it should have been passed already? Some of them were there when NAFTA passed. How about the TPP, would they have cancelled it as the President did?

One more question while I’m at it. They all want the President impeached over the Ukraine. I would like to know, based upon the released transcript, would they resign if they were President?

The candidates all seemed to indicate the economy is bad, jobs are not there and we headed in the wrong direction. Yesterday there was a report released that real income in the eight Bush years went up about $500. In the Obama years, $1,000. In the first three years of this administration $5,000. Wouldn’t that have been a great question?

Finally, my thanks to Anderson Cooper who informed America that Biden’s son did nothing wrong. Thank you Anderson, now I can stop following that story.

Ongoing…

the noise

The noise continues about impeachment and dominate the news.
What is starting to emerge are questions about the secrecy of the hearings.

In our lifetime we had the Nixon and Clinton impeachments. They were open books for all to see. This behind closed doors secrecy is new to us and once the MSM catches up to the people beginning to ask questions, they may report this.

Now Congressman Schiff said he “may not” call the whistle blower to the hearing. Why? Well he says, he “has the transcript”.
Don’t you wonder why they want to keep the identity secret? If the person colluded with Schiff’s staff and worked for a Democratic Primary candidate shouldn’t we be able to understand his/her motive?
Don’t we want to know why the whistle blowers report was so much more damning than the actual words in the transcript?

There’s a lot here we don’t know here. This much I do. I read the transcript and if both sides say that’s it, then there is no case except a political one.

What happened with trey gowdy?

First we heard from the President that Trey Gowdy was joining his legal team. Then we heard Fox had ended their relationship with Gowdy since he was joining the administration. Now we hear it won’t happen. So what did happen? Here’s what we hear:
Advisors to Gowdy and the White House were shocked to see the announcement come out. They were still wrestling with lobbying rules that prohibited Gowdy from starting until January. That would be far too late to assist in the impeachment inquiry. So now it appears as if there is no deal.

Just another example of the lack of discipline in the White House.

Biden’s Son

I watched the short released interviews with Hunter Biden this AM. It seemed to me to be more about the President and his children than Hunter and his actions. Let’s see what the rest looks like as they release more.

The next debate is tonight

There will be twelve candidates on stage and that is way too many for a debate. The interesting thing will be to see how candidates three to twelve go after Biden and Warren. They can attack the President, but they need to beat those two to win the nomination. Maybe this is the debate they take off the gloves internally in the party. We’ll see.
Bernie may have indicated this with his “she (Warren) said she is a capitalist to the bones, I am not”. If he takes that path he will drive this party even further left and that is not good for them.

Syria, Turkey and the middle east

What a mess. Now we are putting on sanctions. The entire area is a quagmire if you get involved. Let me explain it as simple as I can.

The area had long time despot leaders who kept the factions under control in their countries through strong military action without any dissent.
Think the Shan of Iran, Gaddafi in Libya, Saddam in Iraq, and Bashar in Syria.
So, when you overthrow one and try to install a democratic government all the factions arise, infighting begins and no one can control anything. They all think they should be in charge and won’t be treated fairly. It’s that simple.
So when President Carter let the Ayatollah Khomeini over throw the Shan, the unraveling began.
What you have now are multiple countries in states of internal strife with no means to control it. Any involvement has no solution because the factions will not get alone with each other.
The best thing we did was become energy independent and are able to walk away from direct in country involvement.
Now with Syria factions joining the Kurds to fight Turkey the area got even worse. Russia was in Syria supporting Bashar, does that mean they will have to take on Turkey? But, Turkey was buying military equipment from them. See what a mess every move creates?

Just a few tidbits…

Congressional member Nita Lowey of Westchester, NY announced she will not be running for reelection. She represents the area that Bill and Hillary reside in. You know what that means? One person looking closely at running is their daughter Chelsea.
In fact, last year when asked if she saw herself running for elected office she answered “if someone were to step down or retire” she would “have to think if it’s the right choice for me.”
Well someone just stepped down.

You heard the news that Trey Gowdy is joining the President’s legal team. Two things you should know. First, he cannot become active until sometime after January because of the lobbying rules and regulations. The question is can the President wait that long with all the impeachment action underway.
Second, the rumor within the White House is that they want Trey to replace Rudy. One undisclosed source said that every time Rudy goes on TV they are “pulling their hair out”.
Add the arrests yesterday of some associates of Rudy and you can see why this all might be true.

This AM you awoke to news of an attack on an Iranian tanker. This points clearly to the unrest in the Middle East these days. With the US puling back there is really no one stepping up to try and control things. The Europeans who need the oil have always relied on the U.S.. Will they do more now? Will Russia try and step in to control the area? All unanswered questions that will unfold over the months ahead.
This much is true. If we had not become oil independent the attack this AM would have driven oil prices way up and destabilized a lot of markets. It would also have forced more U.S. surveillance and interaction in the area.
No one will talk about this today but the drive for energy independence, accomplished despite pushback from many, was a major move for us.

Finally as we write this there is optimism that the U.S. and China are approaching a mini deal at least on tariffs. The details of this agreement, if reached, will have a major impact on the news and election ahead.

Short Takes…

just thinking and wondering today

I agree so strongly with the President when he says, “Why is it always our war?” In fact I have asked that question any number of times with the current Iran situation. We act now and we are there forever, when others need them more.
But, with the Kurds who bet it all on us, we had made it our affair. How do we abandon them now?

Now the issues here are bigger than that, too.
It does provide an opportunity for ISIS to regroup and thousands of their soldiers to possibly be freed from captivity. If they do reform, the President would own it. There are an estimated 10-12,000 of them in captivity.
But there is something else here.
The President tried to get the countries these ISIS prisoners came from to take them back and deal with them. They wouldn’t do it. It reinforced his “why is it always us” thought. When our allies refused to help in the area or take prisoners back he decided to walk.
We did take two ISIS individuals responsible for beheadings with us.

Watching the NBA leadership and players waffle around in China is laughable. Remember when they moved the All Star game out of Charlotte until North Carolina changed its bathroom gender law? They wanted gender free bathrooms and moved the game. They had no trouble standing up then. 
Their teams have refused to go to the White House for political reasons. Any number of coaches and players have spoken out on current administration stands. 
So how come now, in this free speech moment, they won’t speak up? (Answer: follow the money). Let’s hope the NBA does not apologize for free speech rights.

This week Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez called for all prisons to be closed and those committing crimes to get alternative service in the community. There’s been a movement to cut prison for some crimes and to reduce sentences. NY, in fact, is moving toward closing their infamous Rikers Island Prison. 
Do you think this hurts AOC? Well she has raised $1.4 million for her re-election. An incredible amount. 

Along those same lines did you see this? The person who killed four NY Homeless people was out on bail courtesy of a do good group. The group posted his bail money and he got out of jail. So he killed four people. I guess if we follow AOC’s recommendation we won’t need these do good bail groups in the future. 

In this era of fairness the Minneapolis Mayor wanted to charge the Trump campaign $530 000 for their rally costs tonight. They charged $26,000 to the Dems last time. 
They say the higher costs were because of Trump’s hate and actions. 
Now think about it, they don’t see hate in their action. 

Some news we don’t hear is this.
Republican senators are pressing the Justice Department to pursue criminal charges against women who made false rape allegations against Supreme Court Justice Brett M. Kavanaugh during his confirmation hearing last year.
Nine of the Republican members on the Senate Judiciary Committee sent letters to Attorney General William Barr and FBI Director Christopher Wray asking for an update to their four referrals for criminal investigation.
It’s important to note what they said to protect people into the future:
“We are grateful to citizens who come forward with relevant information in good faith, even if they are not entirely sure about the accuracy of that information. But, when individuals intentionally mislead the committee they divert important committee resources during time-sensitive investigations and materially impede its work. Such acts are not only unfair; they are potentially illegal.”
I agree, don’t you?

So Hillary says about the President and 2020, that “obviously I can beat him again”. And there folks is all you need to know about the impeachment efforts since the day after the election.

On It Goes…

on impeachment

You don’t need us to tell you what you see and read so we will continue with limited comments on the issue, concentrating on some side issues:

Those saying that this isn’t hurting Joe Biden are blind. Have you seen the polls where Elizabeth Warren has caught and passed him?

Every time the MSM or some politician says we have a new whistleblower report about the call, I wonder, “Why do you need that since you have the transcript?” Am I missing something? Isn’t the transcript better than someone’s recollection of the call?

Those (like Congressman Schiff) who say the President is not cooperating, we ask this. Who released the call Transcript and Whistleblower Complaint? Isn’t that outside the norm?

Now Congressman, who made up lines from the transcript, lied about contact with the Whistleblower, and will not release the Volker transcript?
This despite selective leaks from Volker that out of context made you look good?

It makes you wonder who is the one trying to hide something?

It is becoming clearer that congress may have acted too hastily thinking there was more to this story after hearing from the whistleblower. The question remains how do we get out of this?
I remain with the thought they just drag it out and then say we are going to let the people decide with their vote in November.

the president

The President is facing major pushback from both sides on his Syria decision. If Turkey attacks and slaughters the Kurds, this will cause permanent damage for him.

On the positive side China is in the country today and trade negotiations are underway. If the administration can make a positive deal, it will be a great boost for the President.
China, by the way, showed the world some colors with their NBA action all because a General Manager in San Antonio supported the Hong Kong protesters.

Just another interesting week.

Trump and Foreign Policy

Just a reminder to long time readers that we have long said the President is a reluctant warrior when it comes to foreign policy and not the war monger the media presented him as during the campaign.

The move in Syria is in harmony with his distaste for war and sending our military into harms way. He does not want conflict and his instinct is to avoid it.

Now think of his image in the media and then think of recent events like Iran shooting down the drone. He stopped retaliatory action. When Iran attacked the Saudi oil fields, what action did he take? Look at how he apologies for North Korea’s shooting rockets.

The bottom line is he does not want conflict. The President talks tough and has this warrior image, but it is not in his DNA to do anything.

That is separate from his other deep belief that other countries should be paying their fair share of defense and military costs. He believes in having a military so strong that no one would dare challenge us, but if we are defending you, then pay your share.

Thus the decision in Syria to get out. The variable here, as noted yesterday is the Kurds. Loyal fighters with us in the middle east, leaving them to be slaughtered is not defendable.
You can be for peace and want to avoid conflict and never send a soldier into a situation that does not involve our security, but when you commit to someone and they to you, then you must meet your obligation.

Impeachment Weekend…

The weekend news and Sunday shows were all about impeachment and whistler blower number two.
Like you we heard enough about this. Our only comment is this:
You can have ten whistle blowers, but what does that matter since the transcript of the call is out? We read it. What does any additional whistle blower add?
It’s the add they better have, or all the time on the news and Sunday shows was a wasted time. We read the transcript.

The week ahead promises more of the same.:
More Depositions.
More Whistleblowers
More Deadlines from Congress
More Noise In The Media.
More Counter Tweets From The President
More Pressure From The Media On Republicans To Speak Out.

One other thought today

The President’s move to leave the Kurds isolated is a blow to U.S. integrity and trust from foreign countries and leaders. The Kurds were the ones who stood up beside us to fight ISIS and were defenders of the U.S. in the region. When we walk away we leave them at the mercy of those surrounding them and who are dedicated to their demise.
The President at heart deplores war and wants to bring the soldiers and sailors home. It’s his gut reaction and he wants to avoid conflict. This is in line with that, but leaving a loyal ally to face certain destruction sends a message to others. If you are North Korea and they are telling you to get rid of your weapons can you trust the U.S. five or ten years from now? You know your weapons protect you, you can’t be sure about the changing whim of the U.S. government.

We’re Still…

We end the week where we started and it basically comes down to this:
If you watch most of the MSM and read the NYT and Wa Post, you are convinced that the President has done an impeachable act.
If you watch and read the more conservative outlets you are convinced this is backfiring and the President will emerge stronger.

So the question to me is how are we going to get out of this?
If the Democrats bring the current charges to an impeachment vote can they prevail?
I would guess those anti the President will stand with them, and those for the President with him. That leaves the great middle. Do they think this is enough for impeachment?
My thought today is I don’t think so.

Now consider this.
What we have is an impeachment inquiry which some 225 members of congress are for. Do you know how many of them have committed to voting for impeachment? Only twenty-five (25) so far.
There’s a difference between inquiry and impeachment. It’s not talked about much in the media, but is a key number to watch.

If more doesn’t come out, (and don’t discount the free wheeling President saying or doing anything to aid that) my question is how do both sides get out of this?

The Democrats can’t take this to a vote, sure to lose in the senate if the house votes impeachment and leaving many in jeopardy.
So here’s what I think happens barring some new disclosure.
The President refuses to supply the documents they want.
The Democrats go to court and may win.
The President’s team files an appeal and time passes.
Finally Nancy Pelosi announces that the administration has stonewalled and with the election upcoming we’ll let the people vote the man out.

That scenario avoids a vote on the charges we see to date which are weak, and avoids the chance for the house or senate to say “innocent”.

Just our thought. Now who wins and loses?
Joe Biden will be the biggest loser. His reputation and campaign are damaged, and his less than out-front defense these two weeks has not done him any good.
No matter how they handle the outcome both sides will be disliked even more by the other.
The President will take another hit on his style.
Pelosi and Schiff will feel the scorn of the right more than ever.
The American people are losers. Where is USMCA?
Elizabeth Warren is the winner. Biden is damaged, the is President mired in more mud, and Bernie had a heart procedure (we think he had a heart attack). So she gains in the Democratic primary as we see it.

BUT, in November 2020 the people get to vote and decide. You own the ultimate judgement.

Politico put it this way this AM:
The only difference of opinion now is not over the facts, really. Republicans say there’s nothing to see here; it’s just Trump trying to root out corruption. And Democrats say his own words are evidence that the president is deeply unfit for office and deserves to be impeached.

Some other news

An example of the impact on Biden’s campaign was the announcement he raised $15.2 million for his presidential campaign during the past three months. This was a drop from before and well behind Bernie, Warren and Mayor Pete.

NBC reported this about what happened prior to Ukraine meeting:
“‘Heard from White House – assuming President Z convinces trump he will investigate / ‘get to the bottom of what happened in 2016, we will nail down date for a visit to Washington’, former U.S. special representative for Ukraine negotiations Kurt Volker wrote the top Zelenskiy aide on July 25, just before Trump spoke by phone to Zelenskiy. That phone call led a U.S. intelligence official to file a whistleblower complaint that set off a cascade of fast-moving events, ultimately leading to an impeachment inquiry into the president.

My question about this is, do you want to get to the bottom of 2016 and what happened? We spent $45 million on the Mueller probe because we said Trump colluded with the Russians. If he didn’t, as Mueller said after two and a half years, don’t we want to know what happened? I do.
Then add this from the WSJ today:
Trump’s administration is browbeating u.s. allies –– Australia, Italy, Ukraine, the United Kingdom — to investigate the origins of the Mueller probe”.
Still no problem for me. We spent years and millions on a charge that wasn’t. How about the truth?

From the surreal

Kellyanne Conway’s husband George:
George T. Conway III, husband of White House aide Kellyanne Conway, writes that President Trump’s “ingrained and extreme behavioral characteristics make it impossible for him to carry out the duties of the presidency in the way the Constitution requires.” 

Maxine Waters yesterday said how dangerous Trump was with this :”He is setting some of us up to be killed”.
Funny coming from her who told people to harass and go after Trump supporters in restaurants, on the streets, where they shop and all.

Finally

Unemployment numbers today showed:
3.5% unemployment – lowest in 50 years
African-American unemployment at all time low 5.5%
Hispanic unemployment at – 3.9% also a record low
Asian American employment at 2.5%


With Impeachment…

Since its impeachment all the time on the airwaves and in print we don’t want to add to the noise and will limit what and how often we say it.

So let me start with this. In introducing the “inquiry” Nancy Pelosi said this:
“This is a very sad time for our country. There is no joy in this,” said Nancy Pelosi Saturday. “We must be somber. We must be prayerful. … I’m heartbroken about it.”
Does anyone join me in doubting the sincerity of that statement?

My next question is this:
So now we all agree it’s okay for AG Barr to be seeking information since he is assisting the prosecutor (Durham) on gathering information, so impeachment is all about getting Rudy Giuliani involved? Are they going to vote impeachment on that? Really?
What if Rudy says I was the President’s lawyer and congress was trying to impeach him and I was investigating how the charges started, because I saw an issue?

Then there is no direct link to holding funds tied to the request. If you see that in the transcript you see something I didn’t read.

I did hear VP Biden say he did that. Does it matter to anyone?
By the way, Biden is done. He was done before this, but this finishes him.
I bet Obama is really angry. He is being dragged into this and took pride in “no scandals” during his time. Hmm.

Is there a difference between the President asking the Ukraine President to investigate something than the three Democratic senators asking them to do the same, or face possible financial implications? I know the MSM said there is but I wonder. Here’s what was in their letter:
“Ukrainian efforts abetted by a U.S. political party to interfere in the 2016 election should not be ignored,” the senators wrote. “Such allegations of corruption deserve due scrutiny, and the American people have a right to know when foreign forces attempted to undermine our Democrat processes.”
How come now that the Mueller probe (which that was about) is over, that now understanding what Democrats might have done in that same election is not important?

Why the haste of this investigation? Is there a connection here to the I.G. and Durham reports about what happened in 2016 are coming out soon? Is this a cover for that? Might they be connected?

Are we rushing this because the first primaries are in four months and they don’t want people asking “why are we doing this for in an election year?”

What about business for the good of the nation? This AM:
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is sending a letter to all House members urging the prompt approval of the deal, known as the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement. “While many parts of the economy are strong, such as employment and wage growth, others are weakening, such as manufacturing and business investment,” the letter reads. “To keep our economy growing it is imperative that our nation’s elected leaders take steps to restore certainty and boost business confidence.”
Might be a good idea to take time out of impeachment I would think.

Finally today the impeachment mess is taking away from a great story out there. This week John Bolton spoke publicly for the first time. We all know he did not see eye to eye with the President and he made that clear. Here’s what he said about North Korea:
“It seems to be clear that the DPRK has not made a strategic decision to give up its nuclear weapons. In fact, I think the contrary is true. I think the strategic decision that Kim Jong Un is operating through is he will do whatever he can to keep a deliverable nuclear weapons capability.”
He outlined some possible approaches but did appear confident that North Korea would never comply. He closed with these words:
“If you believe … that it is unacceptable for North Korea to have nuclear weapons, at some point military force has to be an option.” 

His speech should have been big news, but impeachment is all we hear.