I watched and followed all the stories about the Memphis Police Murder this weekend. The five officers deserve the charges and removal from their positions. It certainly appears like they committed murder. So, we’re all on the same page; now the questions: At first glance my reaction was this was absolutely poor training. How could these officers act like this if they were adequately trained? Followed by, where was their leadership? Someone with experience to stop the madness? A few things seemed clear to me: These officers failed. The leadership of the Memphis Police failed. The political leaders of Memphis failed. A young man is dead, a family heartbroken, and now more pain is ahead for the families of the officers. What else do we know?
Well, we hear the term Scorpionto describe their unit. Do you know what that stands for? Street Crimes Operation to Restore Peace in Our Neighborhoods. It was formed in 2021 to crack down on violent crime in Memphis which had gotten so bad. With the public outcry about crime, the action was taken to create a special unit to combat it in key areas. The idea seems sound, but the leadership of Memphis failed. They failed to train the officers correctly. They lowered the police standards to hire recruits because no one wants the job anymore. Then they staffed it with inexperienced officers (some only two years on the job). They failed to monitor the team despite warnings.
Memphis leadership in elected offices and police leadership failed here. Their failure has a citizen beaten to death in the street, at least five young men they hired to bring order facing life in jail, a unit designed to protect vulnerable citizens disbanded, and more mayhem ahead. More than those five officers must be held accountable.
In addition, consider this. All weekend all we heard about was this one death. There are over 400 homicides in the nation in an average week. Don’t those lives matter? How come only a police death is important to the media? How about the police officers who are killed. There were over 60 of them last year. Don’t they count?
The media needs to tell the whole story and not just when police go astray. Everyone must be accountable for their actions.
It seems more and more that news is held to break late Friday just because the weekend news cycle means less coverage. It actually behooves the interested and concerned citizen to pay more attention. There are at least three news stories breaking this Friday afternoon into the evening: 1. For some reason the Memphis police have decided to release their video of the five officers that they arrested for second degree murder until late Friday. I don’t see how that’s a good idea with the weekend ahead, but we’ll see. 2. The San Francisco Police are going to release the body cam of the Paul Pelosi incident this afternoon, too. That seems like a better idea to try and keep coverage low. They don’t want coverage of this. By the way, all the daily news blogs this AM from Politico, Punchbowl, Axios and The Free Press never mentioned this in their morning editions today. They already have low coverage! 3. Then, the RNC is having its vote to choose their new leader today. I’m sure when they planned this meeting last year they had not idea it would be such a contentious choice.
Lot’s of news tonight. You may want to stay tuned on Friday nights now.
From The Committee To Unleash Prosperity
We have long talked about social security and how the system does not do you justice for retirement. Here’s a view from “The Committee to Unleash Prosperity” that they published last night:
Welcome To America’s Greatest Ponzi Scheme: Social Security You don’t have to believe us, here’s how the Congressional Budget put it:
Without legislative action, CBO estimates that benefits would be automatically cut by 23 percent across the board upon insolvency. We’ve pointed out many times that if Congress had simply allowed baby boomers the option of putting 10% of their paychecks into a 401k plan, they’d receive benefits almost twice as high as Social Security promises. Now they aren’t even going to get that. Now the CBO report confirms today’s young workers will get screwed even worse. Bernie Madoff and crypto thief Samuel Bankman-Fried were pikers compared to Congress. Someone, please explain how a Ponzi scheme like this is a “success.”
Think about what they said here. Your return is way below what it would be if they truly created a retirement program for the individual. Second, the Congressional Budget Office says the system is going bankrupt. Why? Simply because they used the social security money to get the annual budget more in balance and did not save it to pay for the retirement fund. Digest that for a second. They spent it on programs today. It was your retirement funds that they took out of your pay – AND – had your employer match the 6.25% tax. That is/was 13% of your salary going into YOUR RETIREMENT that they spent on programs they wanted. Our leaders failed us, and every time someone says we need to fix the system the left runs out and says we want to take people’s social security away. The media covers them as if they are telling the truth. In the end our children and grandchildren will have a bankrupt system – soon, too – as we once again lived for today and failed to protect tomorrow.
I’m Going To Leave That Here For All To Think About.
Gasoline prices are rising again (40 cents over the past month). So the administration kept touting they brought prices down “over last year,” do they now own this rise? Plus, the prices since they took office are up over 50%. Do they own that? Really, it seems they only own when there is a drop from the record heights they took it to.
Really, this is what Meta (Facebook) is now saying as they reinstate Donald Trump? “The public should be able to hear what their politicians are saying — the good, the bad and the ugly — so that they can make informed choices at the ballot box.” What, now? Really? After what you, Twitter and others did to influence an election, you say this? How do we suspend you for hiding the truth about the laptop and the false Russian Collusion stories?
Really, the President said House Republicans are “fiscally demented?” Wait, the national debt went up by 4.3 trillion in his first two years in office. That’s almost 14% of the total debt for our entire history. Why are Republicans demented for saying we have to get the deficit under control?
I am watching Democratic leaders, including the President, chastise those discussing the debt and saying we need to get control. Of course, it was “they want to cut your social security and medicare.” I think it’s time for Republican leaders to go before the cameras and say “we are trying to save a system that will go bankrupt according to government regulators. If you allow them to hide the facts, when the system goes under; remember it was them who said it wasn’t an issue.” Folks, if we don’t solve the spending and allow personal greed to rule the day, the entire economic system of the nation is going to decline. Just check history and why others who led the world failed.
Really, we’ve written here we don’t understand why we are not going hybrid with cars before we go full electric. Well Toyota and Hyundai made the bet that was the direction, and you can buy cars from them that get over 50 miles per gallon. But now with administration mandate of all electric, they have stopped investing in them. Here’s an offshoot: Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda, of Toyota’s founding family, is stepping down as chief of the world’s largest automaker. He had approached the industry’s rapid embrace of electric vehicles with trepidation.
Really, there are numerous stories that Speaker McCarthy and House Minority Leader Jeffries are getting along and sharing things with each other. Imagine that, leaders may be working together for the greater good of the nation and its citizens. Where have you gone, Nancy Pelosi?
Speaking of McCarthy, he has received full support from his party to deny Reps. Schiff and Swalwell seats on the intelligence committee, but is getting pushback from the same for denying Rep. Omar her seat. We agree with the pushback. They denied two, just even the score and hope it goes away. Don’t escalate. By the way, Schiff announced today that he is running for Senator in California.
Really, Donald Trump’s polls are up as the document scandal widens. What a side effect that is. Meanwhile, his former Chief of Staff General Kelly, said this about the former President: “He has this thing that he knows more than the generals, the economists, the geologists. He is incapable of saying, ‘I don’t know anything; I need some advice.'”
Really, Mike Pence too? Now we know there is a problem with the system and control. We need a commission or a czar in place right now to get control of secret and top level documents. As disturbing as this all is, how could no one know so many documents are missing? The library knows the day after your book is overdue. Maybe they should hire one of those strict librarians with a ruler to assure everything is returned.
I don’t want to hear anymore the defense of President Biden’s documents that “Donald Trump ….” Stop. Wrong is wrong. The law is the law. They are both wrong. Trump does not justify Biden or vice a versa. You break the law, you own the crime.
But don’t worry, we convicted four more people this week for Jan. 6th, 2020 activity. All is under control. Of course, because this was in Washington and the home of congress, it matters. You know that other group, who are really not a group, called Antifa? Well, in the last week they had riots in Boston and Atlanta. If we had a fair press they would tell you a little about the rioters. Here’s an example: The number three Democrat in the House now is Minority Whip Katherine Clark. Her son was arrested and charged with assaulting a police officer and other crimes. Now don’t you think assaulting a police officer by such a high profile person should be news? Did you hear it? Would you have if it were McCarthy or Scalise’s kid?
Here’s another one of the be careful what you do because when you lose power it could come back to bite. In the last Congress, Nancy Pelosi denied two Republicans seats on committees. It broke a precedent where party leaders were allowed to name their respective reps. The press praised the action, after all Paul Goser and Marjorie Greene were bad. Well, yesterday, McCarthy paid back the favor. Adam Schiff and Eric Swalwell were denied seats on the House Intelligence committee, Rep. Schiff for lying about Russian Collusion and Swalwell for dating a Chinese Spy. For good measure Rep. Omar was denied a seat on the foreign relations committee for her spoken words and views on Isreal. For me, I wish it would have ended with Schiff and Swalwell and we would be even with no more in the future. I am afraid we are escalating things now, but I don’t feel sorry for Schiff or Swalwell.
Did you follow the story of Hunter Biden going to court to fight his four year old daughter born from an affair with a stripper, from using his last name? He and the child’s mother are in court. The mother said the name is a benefit for the child. Hunter said it will harm the child. You know what harms children? Parents not taking responsibility for their actions. Everything you do has consequences, and Hunter, you did the deed, the child is yours. She has the right to her name even if you and your dad try to deny her existence. Where’s the coverage of this?
How about NYC Mayor Adams going to the border and saying something must be done. He further said “his city has no more room to house asylum seekers.” Oh, I see, now that it reached you in a limited matter it counts. You were a “proud” sanctuary city when it was Texas, Florida and Arizona with an issue. A few buses and the world looks different?
Almost as soon as the classifed documents were identified ,the spin began on why this was different than with Donald Trump. There were “only a few,” they said. It was “locked in a closet.” He “didn’t know they were there.” And the capper for me, “Biden tells the truth, Trump was a liar.” All wrong. As we said yesterday, if one was wrong they are both wrong, and they both are. The number doesn’t matter, one is illegal, so a “small number” like ten is no different than fifty. One is the magic number. The President denying he knew they were there is even more dangerous. If he didn’t place the documents in his office closet, who did? He said he “doesn’t know” what the documents are, his lawyers told him not to ask. What? You are the President of the United States, you understand that? You better know about top secret documents out in the open. As for one tells the truth and the other lies, that’s a lie. Trump had a problem with enhancing stories of himself, Biden has an outright problem with the truth.
And what’s with legal authorities? The documents come to light a week before the midterms and after all the hoopla over Trump’s documents at Mar a Lago, and we are not told? Why? It certainly would have made for some interesting dialogue. Before the 2020 election the FBI mislead us and social media on the authenticity of the Hunter Biden laptop by allowing lies to be told and even supporting them. Then we had the whole two and a half year false Russian Collusion narrative. Since when does the FBI take sides?
Speaking of the President, yesterday he was in Mexico for a North America Conference. Let me understand this now. The top six take aways are climate and economic equality? Where was Fentanyl, the scourge that has taken hundreds of thousands of our citizens? That’s not important? Where was the border crisis and help? Instead he takes praise for “not building one meter of wall.” If you’re satisfied with that, you are far to the left of this writer.
They Used To Call This War Creep
A story that hasn’t got much attention, but is certainly a step forward in U.S. involvement in the Russian/Uklraine war: The Pentagon is planning to bring Ukrainian troops into the United States for training on the Patriot missile defense system, U.S. officials said Tuesday, signaling the White House’s latest test of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s threshold for Western intervention in the conflict. Every involvement post WWII started with small steps.
The new congress kept its first promise, which was to eliminate 87,000 new IRS agents. Yesterday they voted along party lines to do just that. Except they will not be eliminated because the Democratic leadership in the Senate will not bring the retraction to a vote. So, the argument about the $1.7 trillion dollar bill passed on the last day of the 117th congress will prevail. With the new 72 hour wait rule the bill would not have passed. Now, if you think 87,000 new IRS agents is not a good idea, remember this, your vote counts. America voted on leaders and a party that thinks this is a good idea. Did you vote for that?
Then the new speaker announced last night that he will proceed with plans to oust Reps.Adam Schiff and Eric Swalwell from the Intel Committee and remove Rep. Ilhan Omar from the Foreign Affairs panel. Now if anyone cries foul, my question is, did you cry foul when Nancy Pelosi kept people off committees? If you did, I will listen, if not, your bias is showing.
Wait, Now They Found What? Where?
They found classified documents in President Biden’s former office? Wasn’t it the President who said about finding the documents in Trump’s possession “how could that have possibly happened?” If you justify either one as okay, then you are showing prejudice. It was wrong for Trump and it is wrong for Biden. Let’s see now what politicians say. Remember Hillary and Nancy Pelosi were both clear on the Trump finding that “no one is above the law.” I assume Joe Biden is someone.
Some News – Did You Know That…
That, Senator Ben Sasse of Oklahoma resigned this week? He is going on to become President of Florida University. The Senate is now 51-48 Democratic, though the Governor will appoint a Republican to replace him.
That Florida Democratic Party Chair, Manny Diaz, announced his resignation Monday? He was under pressure to step down after the party collapsed in the State in the midterms. In his resignation letter, Diaz held firm in his contention that Florida hasn’t turned fully red.
That Donald Trump will be back in the news today as former Trump Organization finance chief, Allen Weisselberg, will be sentenced for tax convictions committed while at the firm?
That Detroit school leaders decided to remove former HUD Secretary Ben Carson’s name from a high school science center named after him? Carson, of course, is one of the top brain surgeons in the world and a minority. Yet, the woke leaders decided he was not a good model. Meanwhile, the Detroit school system is one of the worst performing in the nation. Only one in six middle school students in the School System tested at or above the proficient level for reading.
That a bipartisan Senate group is visiting the border today to gather facts? They are going a few places including El Paso. Wonder what they find and see versus what the President did this weekend. He saw no illegal crosses, a clean El Paso and a firm border wall. Let’s see what the senators see today.
This from The Committee To Unleash Prosperity. For the year the CPI finished above 7%, which translated into the biggest annual rise in prices in some four decades. With wages only up 5%, this meant that family incomes fell by more than $4,000 in purchasing power. I think we all recognized this every time we shop, yet we reelected the same people for the most part? Why? Was the abortion issue really more important than anything else?
There are two schools of thought when it comes to the demonstration we saw on the house floor last week. The first is, you go behind closed doors and choose your leader. By the time it comes to the floor vote you’ve made your choice. Then you vote a party line. The second is, democracy is an open forum and you’re supposed to bang heads, discuss issues and disagree. So what was last week? A combination of both. One of the Rebel Twenty (Andy Biggs) ran against Speaker McCarthy in the Republican closed door meeting and lost 133-81. That didn’t settle it for the twenty who decided to buck the party. They decided to go to the floor to demand changes they wanted.
A few years ago the newly elected Democratic “Squad Members” made public statements that it was time for a “generational change” in the Democratic Party leadership team. They wanted Pelosi, Hoyer and team replaced. Behind closed doors they were defeated and came out and voted for Pelosi to stay, with the promise she would leave the post in four years. The Republican Twenty, part of the “Freedom Caucus,” decided they wanted a different tact.
The question is this. Do you prefer straight party endorsement like we have had, or open fights over the issues? One issue I like that they fought for was a guaranteed 72 hours before any vote by congressional members to pass a bill. Shouldn’t they know what they are voting for? The $1.7 trillion bill passed a few weeks ago was available for 24 hours. No one read it or knew all that was in it.
One thing that I think is way too open for any fringe or egoistical member to use is the single (one) person ability to recall the speaker. What is the purpose of that? So now any Andy Biggs or AOC can see something in some bill they don’t like and demand the speaker be removed. You know what that means? We would be back to last week where the whole house has to vote again. Do we think any Democrat will break ranks? They’ve been successful in passing their programs by voting as one. Thus, we are back to the fiasco we witnessed? That is as poor an idea as I could conceive. It lends itself to chaos.
So opening the bills for review, making debate real, demanding we pay attention to the deficit is all positive to me. Impeaching the speaker because 1 of 435 members has a motive is incomprehensible.
Was it all an embarrassment? Parts of the personalization of personalities was, but the debate and issues itself were not. It was democracy, American Democracy. If you don’t think that’s true, then try it in Russia, China, Iran and elsewhere in the world. In those places if you are on the National Soccer Team and don’t sing the Athem before a game you are subject to death.
As we promised, we have limited updates this holiday period and this may well be the last we’ll send for the year. Thus, allow us to wish you and yours the very best of the holiday season and the most joyous and healthy of new years in 2023.
Let’s start with Donald Trump, who managed to dominate the news despite being out of office, even if it was for all the wrong reasons. The latest was his “major announcement” proclamation. Amid all the anticipation of what it might be, he announces Superhero Trade Cards about his life. An ego still out of control. Then, the Jan. 6th committee announces they recommend charges against him and his attorney. Add this to all the other legal woes he faces. Later this week the House Finance Committee is expected to get the Trump tax info out into the public domain once it votes. Watch that uproar and coverage, because there is news there. .Did anyone ever start a Presidential campaign with so many missteps? The only one in recent memory I can think of was Gary Hart. He openly challenged the press to follow him if they didn’t believe he was not engaging in an extra marital affair. The press did follow him, and he was having an affair. They caught him on a boat named “Monkey Business.” End of campaign. I think Trump’s campaign is stuttering so bad that it is on life support now.
Then There’s The Current President
Let’s go to President Biden who survives because of a supportive press. He continues to tell story after story that upon investigation are proven untrue. The latest is about his Uncle Frank who was wounded in the Battle of The Bulge and refused a Purple Heart. He said when he became VP in 2008 his Dad asked him to correct it and he gave the medal to his Uncle. Great story. Except his Uncle died 9 years before he became VP, and his Dad died in 2002, six years before. How do you get away with it? Just assure your friends in the press laugh and don’t tell anyone.
Samuel Bankman- Fried
Then there’s the FTX scandal and the missing billions. We’ve been assured that the securities oversight committee will lead the investigation. Who heads that committee today? Maxine Waters, the same congressional person who threw a kiss at Sam Bankman-Fried after his last visit to congress. Her quote: “Rest assured that this committee will not rest until we have fully investigated all the crimes FTX has committed.” Oh, okay. The last time I felt this assured OJ said he was going to look for the real killer.
You Can Fool Some Of The People….
The administration has been touting loud and often that gasoline prices are now cheaper than they were a year ago. The networks reported it, and many citizens were praising the administration. Wait a minute, the price today is still a dollar above the day Biden took office. Since when was that good news? When you can fool some of people all the time.
Wait, This Is How It Is Supposed To Work
The President signed the Respect for Marriage Act, which assured federal recognition of same-sex marriage. It was a reaffirmation of the Supreme Court ruling but “protection for the future.” He said: “This law and the love it defends strike a blow against hate in all its forms … And that’s why this law matters to every single American.” Well, here’s some news for him and the senators. That’s the way the court is supposed to work. You, the legislative branch, make the law, the Court upholds it. That simple. It’s only in recent times we’ve gone to the court to make law. So thank you for doing your job as it was intended.
Oh, She Has Credibility
Now let’s talk American Federation of Teachers Randi Weingarten and her comments. Her remarks to the President: “What you have done for American education…has been more than any president – even FDR.” Okay, then explain this: “Math and reading scores for 9-year-olds in the US fell between 2020 and 2022 by a level not seen in decades, a foreboding sign of the state of American education two years after the Covid-19 pandemic began.” Would we accept that as great if Trump were President? I wouldn’t with kids that age, and you shouldn’t, no matter who is President.
How Not To Run A Party – If You Want To Win
Does any party know how to shoot themselves better than the Republicans? With a four vote majority in the House, five members have said they will not vote for Kevin McCarthy as speaker. One of the five ran against him in their caucus and got wiped out. But no change in their stance. Now 54 Republican Congressional members are saying they are for McCarthy and will never vote for anyone else. If you can’t manage the one house you have, how can you manage the nation?
Here’s Wishing You All A Happy Holiday and New Year.
The mid terms ended with the Georgia run off and it put an exclamation point on the voting and a few messages: – It’s not in your interest to be an election denier without provable evidence. – The former President may hold sway with some primary voters, but that is bad politics for a general election. – No one lost more with the candidates he selected and the results that occurred than Donald Trump. – If you think Donald Trump and his chosen candidates were not the issue, consider this in Georgia. Walker was the only statewide Republican candidate who lost. The GOP swept every other office — from governor to state insurance commissioner. – There are four congressional seats that sit between four more years of the current policies and a check. The 2024 election has already kicked off. Both sides need to think about the candidates they want to back if they want to win.
Meanwhile, the jury in NY found Trump Organization guilty in an off the books compensation scheme to pay some executives in car leases, apartments and cash and avoid taxes. The fine is not a large one ($1.6 million) for the corporation, but the conviction is. Now this is before the House got hold of the taxes that the former President would never release, so buckle up for that. Don’t forget the other cases pending against the former President and his companies. Oh yea, the head of the January 6th panel said his committee plans to recommend charges. He did not say against whom, but you may have an idea.
Speaking of convictions, there wasn’t much coverage but did you see or hear that Michael Avenatti was sentenced to jail on another charge for 14 years? He was sentenced for embezzling millions of dollars from four of his clients and ordered to pay nearly $11 million in restitution. Proving again that you need to be careful in picking your heroes.
Some Follow Up From Earlier Stories
Yesterday I outlined the story about the FBI and its involvement in the hiding of the Hunter Biden Laptop story and content release. Well, later in the day Elon Musk fired the company’s general counsel (Jim Baker) for his role in covering up some of the material Twitter was releasing on why it banned the story. Now Baker was the FBI’s general counsel and had played a role there in spreading the false Steele Dossier and a long connection to FBI and Trump stories. Musk said this about the dismissal: “In light of concerns about Baker’s possible role in suppression of information important to the public dialogue, he was exited from Twitter today.” Now let’s be clear, not everyone at the FBI is the problem, but there is an issue at the top levels with some that appears to need immediate cleaning.
In a second follow up, Iranian leadership last night issued statements that they have not relaxed any face covering rules for woman. They called the reports “fake and misleading news” to say they did.
Remember we mentioned the plan for the Democrats to change the primary season states? Well New Hampshire, as reported, has a law they must be the first primary in the nation. (Iowa is a caucus for that reason.) Yesterday the Governor of N.H. said this about the Democratic request to change their law: “An absolute joke.”
A Sign Of The Times
Not sure this story has been widely distributed but it is a sign of the time we are living in: Fans of the iconic Disney theme park ride Splash Mountain have a little over a month to take one last ride. Why? Disney will close Splash Mountain permanently on January 23 because the company says it promotes “racial stereotypes.” What and how you may be asking. Me too. Here’s what they said: The ride, which opened in 1989, is based on the 1946 Disney film “Song of the South.” The film has fallen out of favor in recent years because, critics say, it offers a racially insensitive depiction of Reconstruction in the American South just after the end of the Civil War.
If I have this right ,and it turns out to be true, then we have some real issues that the entire nation better wake up to. The story is that the FBI had Hunter Biden’s laptop for over a year before it became public knowledge in October 2020. Let’s digest that for a second. The FBI had the laptop and knew all that was on there. We know about the illegal drugs, photo’s, hookers and other stuff. Get past that, that was Hunter’s life. The real issue is that there are the notes and messages that clearly indicate the President knew the foreign activity his son and brother were doing and was assisting and profiting from it. Knowledge he denied knowing in interviews and at the 2020 presidential debate. In fact, he called it Russian interference.
Over time we have learned the FBI did not disclose anything because they didn’t want to influence an election, feeling that Jim Comey may have influenced the one in 2016.
I guess you can argue that is righteous, though I would argue the possible influence on our President should be known. After all, we did go through four years of Russian Collusion and the charge that the former President was compromised. All of which proved untrue. Add that the FBI, in pushing the false Steele Dossier, actually abetted the false charge and I would think that is taking a side.
Anyway, back to the current situation. The FBI had the laptop for a year, knew of its content, allowed that phony letter from former CIA experts to say it was probably Russian disinformation and said nothing. Except they did.
Now we learn the FBI alerted social media, like Twitter, that an October misinformation surprise was coming and would likely involve Biden’s son. Stop and think about that for a second.
Now, how did they know it would be coming out? Well, they were conducting surveillance on Rudy Guilani and, as you know, the store technician called him to give him a copy of the laptop because he was so afraid of the content and the FBI was doing nothing.
Knowing this the FBI informed social media heads of a likely misinformation campaign about to hit. Except, it wasn’t misinformation. The laptop was real.
That is unacceptable and if factual then heads must roll at the FBI immediately. To me, as I study this, that is what happened.
The next time someone mentions a threat to Democracy, you can tell them that there sure is. It is right before their eyes, they just don’t see it.
NBC reported that Georgia has set new records for early voting ahead of Tuesday. More than 1.85 million have voted early. And the contest is drawing new voters. At least 76,000 Georgians who didn’t turn out in the Nov. 8 general election have voted early. Wait, I thought you said that the new laws were designed to inhibit voting. Ready to admit you were wrong?
Senator Ernst of Iowa reacted to the Democrats changing their primary season and eliminating her home state: “We have seen a number of pushes in the past to change this, I’m glad that Republicans are staying the course. I feel Democrats have really given middle America the middle finger.” Does this make Iowa a red state now?
Interesting to see these two stories in the WSJ this morning on countries seeing protests now. Iran: The country’s attorney general said Iran had disbanded its so-called morality police and is considering altering the requirement that women cover their heads in public. China: Local authorities across China are paring back some of their strictest Covid-19 control measures, just days after public anger spilled over into rare protests against a zero-tolerance approach.
The Supreme Court gets another hot case this week sure to bring about controversy – which some want. The justices will consider whether a website designer’s free-speech rights entitle her to turn away customers, based upon her religious beliefs. The plaintiffs were seeking online services for same sex marriages and the defendant turned them away, despite state law protecting LGBT individuals from discrimination. Either way it will be big news.
Now for Trump News over the weekend…and he made news! He called for terminating the Constitution due to “massive election fraud” after the Twitter document dump about their role in limiting access to a Hunter Biden story. For accuracy purposes, here’s the direct quote on his “Truth Social” web site:
Now I would challenge you to go find those in public office who supported this – though, as you can see, he had 54,913 likes in the first 19 hours.
While on the subject of the Twitter release it was disgraceful how the networks, CNN and MSNBC failed to cover the story. Completely disgraceful, for a story they failed to cover prior to the election and now that they acknowledge is true, they still fail. The media is the problem as we’ve said over and over. Just report fairly and we will all win.
I guess Republicans have a hard time learning. Here’s a story on the Georgia runoff election next week: Georgia voters have cast more than 1 million ballots ahead of the Senate runoff. Democrats are pushing to bank as many votes as possible while Republicans, including Walker, have taken a less aggressive approach that will leave Walker heavily dependent on runoff Election Day turnout. Does that make any sense to anyone? Add that Election Day is a runoff and not a true Election Day, can’t we predict who will win?
The other news out of Georgia is the coverage of the race. Newsbusters.org just released in a new analysis. “ABC, CBS and NBC evening newscasts blasted the GOP candidate with 88% negative coverage, while the Democratic incumbent enjoyed 71% positive press. More than half of the coverage (nearly 46 minutes, out of 87 minutes total) consisted of personal allegations against Walker,, vs. a mere 11 seconds spent on personal accusations against Warnock,” the study said. One more interesting stat, “The networks spent the lion’s share of their airtime focusing on Walker, while Warnock received a free ride. Our analysts looked at all 87 minutes of evening news coverage of the race from September 1 through November 29. About three-fourths of this coverage (64 minutes, 42 seconds) was spent discussing Walker, vs. 21 minutes, 12 seconds talking about Warnock — a three-to-one disparity,” the research said.
While we’re on elections, did you see the Democratic plan to change their primary cycle? No more Iowa and New Hampshire at the top. Here’s the new plan: South Carolina on Feb. 6, New Hampshire and Nevada on Feb. 13, Georgia on Feb. 20, and Michigan on Feb. 27. Why? It gets the south more involved, and if you remember it was S.C. that was Biden’s firewall last primary season. It opens the primary to more minority voters and deemphasizes Iowa and it’s largely white voters to kick off the season and eliminate candidates. It will be interesting to see the reactions from Iowa and N.H. if they lose their first in the nation status, especially Iowa who is eliminated totally
We’re going to spend more time on Elon Musk in a coming blog, but isn’t it interesting how he went from left hero and icon to hated person? Why? Because he bought Twitter and wanted to make it an open forum for all sides. If you believe in and support free speech how can you be against his drive to air all sides? Twitter took a side and influenced the last election. Was that okay because it was pro left? In fact, the person who made the decision to ban the NY Post story on Hunter’s laptop now says it was a “wrong decision.” Why is he and outlets like CBS coming clean now? Answer: Because Musk is about to release the reasons why it was buried and the Republican congress is going to hold hearings on why the story was depressed. Folks, we have to be for Amendment One and free speech for all.
Meanwhile, Musktweeted that he had a “good conversation” with Apple’s CEO Tim Cook, and said that “we resolved the misunderstanding about Twitter potentially being removed from the App Store. Tim was clear that Apple never considered doing so.” That’s good news, and I hope it is true that there was never a plan or thought to do so. Social media must be free speech for all too.
It Can’t Be A Day Without Trump News
An appeals court halted the “special master” review of documents seized at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate. The decision was unanimous (3-0) and said the former president’s objections to the search should have been dismissed on jurisdictional grounds. This is a boost to the Justice Department’s continuing criminal investigation. Closing arguments were made in the Trump Organization Tax Fraud Trial Focus against his company. A decision is expected next week. Watch the coverage of this. Congress now has his taxes after the ruling they had the right. With weeks of house control left, watch for leaks and news on this. A little bit of good news for the former President was the investigation into whether his administration was behind the tax audits of James Coney and Andrew McCabe came up empty. The IRS’s inspector general didn’t find any evidence that they were targeted.
Two semi related news stories were on Kanye West. First, he has been suspended again from Twitter for posting a nazi swastika on the site in a post. Second, when questioned he said that he sees “good things about Hitler” and defended the Nazi regime in a antisemitic interview with conspiracy theorist Alex Jones. Here’s a quote: “You’re not Hitler, you’re not a Nazi. You don’t deserve to be called that and demonized,” Mr. Jones said to Mr. West at one point. “Well, I see good things about Hitler, also,” the rapper replied, who then credited the Nazi dictator with inventing highways and microphones. “Every human being has value that they brought to the table, especially Hitler.”
Be careful with the friends you pick and invite to dinner.
Today the House is going to take up legislation to avoid a nationwide strike by railroad workers. With less than two weeks until the strike deadline, President Biden called on Congress to impose a deal that was negotiated earlier this year to avert a shutdown of the country’s freight railroads. In his statement the President said this: “I am calling on Congress to pass legislation immediately to adopt the Tentative Agreement between railroad workers and operators – without any modifications or delay – to avert a potentially crippling national rail shutdown.” That deal was recently voted down by four railroad unions representing most of the union members. The rail workers have said they are angry and frustrated that the deal lacked paid sick days or other substantial changes to an attendance policy that penalizes workers for taking time off while they are sick. What is interesting to note is this: In 1992, two days into a crippling railroad strike, then Senator Biden came to the Senate floor and decried the lopsided nature of federal labor laws dealing with the rail industry — laws, he argued, that essentially allowed corporations, regulators and, ultimately, Congress to run roughshod over workers. He said then: “We need to restore a measure of balance to these negotiations,” before voting with just five other senators against halting the strike. Interesting right? Thirty years later, as president, he is turning to those same laws to prevent another strike and impose a tentative contract agreement that his administration brokered, but multiple rail unions voted to reject. I guess: It’s just easier to be “Union Joe”as a single senator among 100 than it is as president of the United States.
Same Sex Marriage Approved
Yesterday the Senate voted 61-36 to pass a law validating same sex marriage. What is interesting about this passage is to look at the timeline and the changing nation we live in. In 1996, just 27% of Americans supported same-sex marriage. In fact, that year President Clinton signed the Defense of Marriage Act, which denied federal recognition to same-sex marriages. Now, just 26 years later, we have a law making it legal as 71% (Gallup Poll) support same-sex marriage. In its approval yesterday, the measure repeals the Defense of Marriage Act and requires state recognition of legal same-sex marriages. Republicans pushed for religious freedom protections and amended language that shields nonprofit religious organizations from having to provide services in support of same-sex marriages, but they were voted down.
Disney In The News
In the last week Disney fired its CEO and then introduced what it called a boundary breaking movie titled “Strange World.” The movie was different for them in that it featured a gay teen romance as the main character, an environmental message and no princesses. Not exactly the Disney of your parents and grandparents childhood. Well, the movie grossed $11.9 million over the three-day weekend and $18.6 million over the five-day Thanksgiving holiday. That was far below what was expected and needed to be a Disney success. The film’s budget was a reported $180 million. Variety has projected that it could lose as much as $100 million.
Was This The Best Person For The Job?
When Sam Brinton was recently appointed and celebrated by the Biden Energy Department as the “first gender fluid person in the federal government, there were questioned if it was the right person for the role and if the appointment was more to support the transgender community. Well, Brinton is now facing felony charges and has been placed on leave after being accused of stealing luggage at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. Brinton is due in district court in Hennepin County, Minnesota, on Dec.19 on felony theft charges that carry a five-year prison term. According to court documents police used video surveillance to catch Brinton on Sept. 16 taking a woman’s hard-sided Vera Bradley roller suitcase from the airport’s baggage claim area while traveling to St. Paul from Washington. Brinton made the trip without any checked baggage but showed up at one of the luggage carousels and snatched the woman’s suitcase, according to a complaint. Brinton removed the luggage tag and “left the area at a quick pace,” police said in the complaint. Brinton checked into the InterContinental St. Paul Riverfront hotel and left the next day with the bag, which was worth $2,325 including its contents, according to the victim.
The President Sounds Like Reagan or Clinton
I watched the President yesterday as he visited a computer chip manufacturing site in Michigan. As I watched and listened to him talk of the booming economy I was reminded of speeches Presidents Reagan and Clinton gave as the economy boomed in their terms. Do you think we’re in that kind of economy, because I don’t. Yet, I think the President believes it. He boasted of his record in creating manufacturing jobs. “We’re strengthening American manufacturing. We’ve created more jobs in the first two years of any presidency, 735,000 manufacturing jobs, and counting,” he said. Again he is counting the jobs people went back to after Covid. The pandemic shutdowns eliminated 1.4 million jobs from February 2020 to April 2020, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. About 800,000 had been restored when Mr. Biden took office in January 2021.
The Democrats Choose Today
Today the Democratic caucus will choose their new leadership beginning January 2023. Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D., N.Y.) is expected to be chosen to lead congressional Democrats. Rep. Jeffries’s election would make him the first Black man to lead a major political party and mark a generational shift. He is 52 and will replace Nancy Pelosi. His team will include Katherine Clark of Massachusetts, and Pete Aguilar of California replacing Stony Hoyer and James Clyburn. Besides the age difference it will also be the first time there is no white male on a leadership team in congress.
Some Media Thoughts
Remember NBC reporter Miguel Almaguer who reported there was more to the Paul Pelosi attack story? He was pulled from the air and hasn’t been heard from since. Are you like me wondering why?
Little coverage but a judge allowed Devin Nunes defamation lawsuit against NBCUniversal to proceed, saying the former congressman had “plausibly alleged actual malice” over a Rachel Maddowcomment.
Interesting to see in the Georgia run off Hershel Walker is campaigning with Brian Kemp, the Governor who fought back against Donald Trump, and the former President is staying away.
How come all the coverage of election deniers are one sided? Always with the 2020 election. How about 2016 and Democratic leaders who denied the election? Examples: Soon to be new leader Jeffries wrote this on President Trump: “Stop Pouting, History Will Never Accept You As A Legitimate President.” “The more we learn about 2016 the more ILLEGITIMATE it becomes,” he tweeted in 2018, two years after the election. He added: “America deserves to know whether we have a FAKE President in the Oval Office.” “History will never accept you as a legitimate president,” he tweeted from his personal account in 2020. One more example: “Is Donald Trump” A. a legitimate President… B. a Russian Asset… C. an organized crime boss… D. a useful idiot,” he tweeted in 2019. “The American people deserve to know.” If Jeffries were a Republican running for a leadership position would all America know this?
Other leaders have been deniers too: Jamie Raskin, the Maryland Congressman who is in line to be ranking Democrat on the House Oversight Committee. In 2021, he led the second Trump impeachment effort. In 2017, he was the second House Democrat to attempt to block Trump’s electoral votes from being counted. He then wanted to impeach Trump only four months into his term. How many know that? Maybe Republicans aren’t the only deniers.
Protests in China joined protests ongoing in Iran. China leader Xi, in power since 2012, never faced this and will not allow them to fester. If protests keep spreading, the Chinese Communist Party’s governing logic and words of former left hero, Mao Zedong will prevail – you must prevent a single spark from becoming a prairie fire.
Venezuela joined Saudi Arabia in promising increased oil. Now, with Saudi Arabia, the administration granted Saudi Arabian Crown Prince-turned-Prime Minister Mohammed bin Salman immunity from a lawsuit over his regime’s 2018 murder and cutting up into little pieces of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. The same man the President called a murderer and promised to bring action against. Think there was a deal here since the Saudi’s announced a cut after the face to face meeting of President Biden and bin Salman? Now, with Venezuela, we are going to lift sanctions for this dictator to get oil revenue? Why aren’t we unleashing American oil? We are doing 12 million barrels a day domestically, when the projection was for 15 million by now. Again we ask what the difference to the environment is drilling elsewhere versus here. It’s the same environment, right? As for the 9,000 leases the administration talked about yesterday, well how about asking the oil companies about them and the approval regulation process put in place.
This from The Hill: Democrats drastically outpaced Republicans in pre-Election Day voting in key battleground states this year, allowing the party and its candidates to run up a massive vote advantage heading into Nov. 8. The Republicans, of course, banked on heavy Election Day turnout to overcome this. But after the so-called red wave that Republicans had predicted ahead of the midterms failed to materialize, a growing number of influential Republican leaders and operatives say the party needs to compete with Democrats more aggressively when it comes to early and mail-in voting. No kidding. How many elections do you need to lose to learn this?
Ronna McDaniel seems to have support to hold her job as head of the party. Why? And look at who announced he is running against her: The MyPillow Man himself, Mike Lindell announced that he is running to chair the Republican National Committee. “I am 100% running for the RNC chairman against Ronna McDaniel, I’m all in … and one of the things that one of the big donors said to me, he said, Mike, everybody wants you to be head of the RNC, some of them just don’t know it yet.” Count me as one who doesn’t, and doesn’t think he will ever think it’s a good idea.
Well, here’s a not so surprising statistical story out of New York: New York County’s top prosecutor has downgraded slightly more than half of all felony cases to misdemeanors in 2022, compared to 39% in 2019, according to new data. Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg made criminal justice reform a key part of his 2021 campaign and directed staff to downgrade certain felonies so defendants wouldn’t face as much jail time. A famous “day one” memo on downgrading charges resulted in a backlash from city police, and the district attorney backed off some changes. Data analyzed shows Mr. Bragg declined to prosecute 35% more felony cases this year than in 2019. The numbers also showed Mr. Bragg’s office wins a conviction when major felony charges are brought only 51% of the time, a decrease from 68% in 2019.
Don’t worry though, NYC voted 70% for its current Governor who promised to keep him in office and 30% for the Republican who promised to fire him on day one for not doing his job.
Hasn’t Elon Musk been fun to follow every day? He’s in the news consistently – almost Trump like. Yesterday there was the story of Alyssa Milano selling her Tesla because he was opening Twitter. I thought we wanted free speech? Anyway, she announced she was buying a Volkswagen instead, oblivious, of course, to the fact that the company was started by Nazi’s to support Hitler. Then Musk said “Yes” when asked on Twitter if he would support Ron DeSantis for president in 2024. See, he’s a right wing conservative, and they knew it. But: Musk also said he “voted for Biden over Trump” in 2020. Oh? “My preference for the 2024 presidency is someone sensible and centrist.” Then Musk announced he will release the reasons why Twitter banned the Biden Laptop story. Aren’t we all interested in that? That announcement caused havoc. Even the White House commented. Why?
That’s the same laptop that CBS, 769 days after The New York Post ran the story, verified as real!! The one that In 2020, Lesley Stahl (CBS) claimed ‘can’t be verified.’ Hey Leslie and CBS, you ran with a false Russian Collusion story for almost three years – how did you verify that? Please explain.
Let’s not forget Trump and his news over the weekend. He was in the news for his dinner with Ye (Kanye West), who brought along a few friends, one who is identified as a white supremacist. Friends like Ye, Trump does not need. Then he is facing legal challenges in four separate courts: The Mar-a-Lago documents case: The Justice Department will ask a federal appeals court in Atlanta to remove the special master from the case involving classified material from the estate. The Trump Organization Criminal Case In New York: Prosecutors rested their case hoping to convict his company largely on the word of two top executives who cut deals before testifying that they schemed to avoid taxes on company-paid perks. NYAG Civil Case: A separate group of Trump lawyers will appear at a hearing as part of the NY AG’s lawsuit against Trump, his children and his company. The NYAG has already successfully installed a court-monitor to oversee parts of the company. A Defamation Lawsuit: Was filed by a former Elle columnist and GMA contributor E. Jean Carroll. She is also filing a claim for battery under a New York law that now allows alleged sex assault victims to sue regardless of time frame.
Then the Supreme Court announced it would not block a House committee access to Trump’s tax returns. If they are turned over, how long before they are leaked to the press? Days? Hours? Minutes? The former President has refused to release these returns since the 2016 election.
Trump’s response to all this? His message to supporters (and request for funds): “The journey ahead of us will not be easy. Anyone who truly seeks to take on this rigged and corrupt system will be faced with a storm of fire that only a few could withstand. We will be resisted by the combined forces of the establishment, the media … and the most dangerous domestic censorship system ever conceived,” the message advised. “We will be attacked. We will be slandered. We will be persecuted, just as I have been from the beginning. But we will not be intimidated. We will persevere. And in the end, they will lose, and we will win. I did it before, and I will do it again. Will you vote for me a third time to be the 47th President of the United States?”
Now not all are buying the message for a lot of reasons, including loyalty. Look at this from former Rep. Lou Barletta from Pa., who Trump abandoned. “I was one of his most loyal supporters in Congress. But loyalty was only a one-way street.”
Meanwhile, President Biden didn’t disappoint us, he didn’t do much over the weekend (outside the oil fiasco above), but he did do: The eighth student loan pause on payments. Why? Jobs are plentiful he tells us, why are we delaying? It can’t be political can it? The courts have consistently swatted down Biden’s attempt to unilaterally cancel or suspend student loans. The Constitution clearly states that only Congress has the authority to appropriate money. His actions have been deemed illegal. So he does a pause under Covid and a compliant press covers it up.
Then we hear the railroad strike he so proudly prevented (before the election) was voted down by some of the unions. You know the one where media types like Scott Pelley (CBS again) asked with love and praise how he managed to get a deal. Remember that?
It Was A Quiet Weekend They Said, But There Was News.
With the holiday week upon us, we want to wish you and yours a Happy Thanksgiving and hope the nation can stop and be thankful for all we have. It is a special and unique holiday and says something about our values when we do. With that in mind, we will cease adding to your mail after this blog – unless events occur that drive us to reach out.
Some Thoughts As We Head Into The Week – First, Donald Trump
Does’t it seem, as you watch and read the political news, that one name continues to dominate above all else – Donald Trump? This from the weekend: Paul Ryan said he was never a “never Trump” person; but he is a “never again Trump” person. He added, “because I want to win, and we lose with Trump.” At a Las Vegas gathering of Republicans, the candidates who spoke were clear, 2024 is not 2016 and they are ready to take on the former President and see the party win in 2024.
Then there was Elon Musk reinstating the former President to Twitter. The left’s immediate reaction was “how many are going to die” because of this? What? What was that based upon? How many died because of the riots you supported in 2020? For his part, the former President said he was not going back on Twitter. He was dedicated to his own produced site, “Truth Social.” Let’s see now, he has 4.6 million followers on Truth Social — and 83 million on Twitter. What do you think?
Finally a Democrat on a Sunday show saying something nice about the former President? It’s true: Sen. Mark Warneron “Fox News Sunday” said this about TikTok: “I think Donald Trump was right. I mean, TikTok is an enormous threat. … So if you’re a parent, and you’ve got a kid on TikTok, I would be very, very concerned. All of that data that your child is inputting and receiving is being stored somewhere in Beijing.”
It’s a Christmas miracle!
Now Politics In General
In the end, after all the noise and spending, only 26 seats in the House switched parties in the 2022 mid-terms. 8 went from Republican to Democrat. 18 went from Democrat to Republican. A total of ten difference, which now gives the Republicans the same edge the Democrats had after 2020.
One more thing of note from the election: 96% of U.S. House races were won by the biggest spender.
President Biden turned 80 yesterday. If he runs again, he will be 82 on inauguration day. That’s five years older than Ronald Reagan was when he left office. Do you think he’s running?
Here’s one to watch today and this week. Remember all the praise the President got before the election about avoiding a rail strike? We told you he pushed the issue back to after the election. This is the week. The two largest railroad unions will decide whether to ratify a contract with freight railroads as early as today. A “no vote” could force Congress to step in to try and avert a rail strike just before the holiday season. A strike could happen as soon as Dec. 5, after the first cooling-off period ends for the 12 involved unions.
Is it The Gun Or The Individual?
You’ll hear a lot about guns after the Colorado incident this weekend. It has begun on the networks, but we know little about the shooter so far. What we do know is this about him: A year and a half before he was arrested in the Colorado Springs nightclub shooting, Anderson Lee Aldrich allegedly threatened his mother with a homemade bomb, forcing neighbors in surrounding homes to evacuate while the bomb squad and crisis negotiators talked him into surrendering.
Yet, despite that scare, there’s no record prosecutorsever moved forward with felony kidnapping and menacing charges against him, or that police or relatives tried to trigger Colorado’s ‘red flag’ law that would have allowed authorities to seize the weapons and ammo the man’s mother says he had with him. When they start telling us it was the gun again: Let’s ask why no action is taken when someone exhibits a threat. Ask too: If they want to ban knives, because that was the weapon of choice in the Idaho murders and many recent NYC subway attacks.
Maybe it’s the person and the failed action to remove them from the streets to protect the public.
As We Get Ready To Consume – Consider This
We have all grown up knowing that America was the bread basket of the world. We fed the world right? Well know this: New USDA data reported Friday, indicates that for the first time in decades, the U.S. is now buying more food from the rest of the world than the amount of our domestic agriculture products that are sold abroad. In 2022 the U.S. is expected to end the year with a net IMPORTER of food.
So first we went from energy independence to depending on the world, we are now importing more food than we exporting. Comfortable with that? Not me, but we just reelected the people who are leading us down that path.
Here’s Wishing You and Yours a Happy Thanksgiving.
With her announcement yesterday Nancy Pelosi ends an era that made history. Whether you are a supporter or detractor, you have to agree she made history. She was the first female Speaker ever. She is the first speaker since 1955 (Sam Rayburn) who lost the majority and survived to come back as speaker. Her time as speaker saw many historic turns. The Iraq War, the 2008 economic downturn, terrorism and covid. She was instrumental in the passing of the ACA and the focus on the climate. Recently she led the outrage overJanuary 6th. Amazingly she will maintain her record of having never lost a floor vote on legislation. She only brought votes she knew she had, even with the slim majority the past few years. She kept her members in line and voting the party line. She also has two lost impeachment trials. She had at least one deplorable act of tearing up a State of the Union Speech on live television as the President finished. She is left for history to judge, but a part of history she will be.
One aside, it will be interesting to watch her in the House now as she becomes another member following her party leader. She stepped down from leadership, but not from the House.
A Few Other Thoughts
We head into the second weekend since the mid-terms and we still have five house races uncalled. It would seem to me, that in a congressional district, you could have counted and recounted ten times by now.
With the bare minimum to have a majority (218) the Congressional Republicans announced a probe of the Hunter Biden ties to the President, stating there is a clear connection, and the President may be compromised. What I find interesting of their press briefing was that only the conservative networks reported on it yesterday. The major networks like ABC did not cover the story. These are the same people who carried the false Russian Collusion story for almost three years and told us that President Trump was comprised. Well. now we have some real evidence that needs investigation and nothing. Why?
The day after the mid terms (and since) we have called for the Republicans to replace their party leader (Ronna Romney McDaniel). Yesterday we heard that Rep. Lee Zeldin (the Republican Gov. candidate in NY) emailed committee members about his potential bid. She announced she is running again, but if you can’t figure out how to do early voting you are out.
Speaking of Romneys, things are brewing in Utah. When Senator Lee asked Mitt Romney for an endorsement late in the campaign this month, Mitt refused to back his fellow Republican. This further angered Utah Republicans and yesterday former Rep. Jason Chaffetz indicated he is going to primary Mitt in 2024. I think Mitt is in trouble in Utah.
On politics, if you think Donald Trump’s announcement wasn’t ill timed for Republicans, digest this: Democrat Sen. Raphael Warnock is so sure that former President Trump is so toxic in Georgia that he’s running a new ad that simply repeats the ex-president’s endorsement of his challenger Herschel Walker. I repeat, if you think Trump is the answer, you’re a Democrat.
To even out the political sides here’s the Republican bumper sticker of the week: Biden and Federman 2024 It’s A No Brainer
This should scare you: Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said he has a “plan” to deal with what’s expected to be an even worse border situation once he carries out a judge’s order to no longer use pandemic powers to oust illegal immigrants. The man who says the border is under control has a plan for the tens of thousands additional immigrants about to try and enter. Yea, right.
On a lighter note, how about the country of Qatar announcing two days before the start of the World Cup that there will be no alcoholic beverages for the games. Imagine, you have to watch a game for the game and not the beverages.
It’s still hard to believe that it took seven plus days to count votes in congressional districts. It took so long that the 2024 campaign actually kicked off while we were still deciding who won what.
I had a conversation with a good, well informed friend this morning on the reentrance of Donald Trump. He said he is awaiting the “start of him humiliating everyone, and to see who fights back and survives.” We had a good back and forth, and I ended up here: “The former President told me I would get tired of winning. Well, the Republicans lost the House in his mid-term year of 2018. They lost the Presidency and Senate in his 2020 Presidential run. They failed to capitalize on dire conditions in 2022 due to his demand for candidates who said his election was cheated. You know what? I am actually tired of losing.”
Let’s see what the people and party do now.
In the interim, the Democrats are front and center now. As we discussed yesterday, both McCarthy and McConnell survived in their caucuses. What does Nancy Pelosi announce today? The leaders of the House Democratic Caucus are all 80+ years old. The President turns 80 this weekend. It’s time for new leadership I would think. If they go that way the favorite in the clubhouse is Hakeem Jeffries. Now consider this. He is from Brooklyn, NY. So is Senate Leader Chuck Schumer. Wouldn’t that be interesting to have the congress led by two Brooklynites. Is middle America ready for that?
While we are still counting the 2022 votes, former President Trump kicked off 2024 last night. Buckle up for two years of noise.
The first question is this, was the timing right or too soon? In my opinion, way too soon, but the messenger is always about himself and not the greater need. Was the message right? Well, l it was certainly mellow toned as opposed to his past presentations. It was low key and restrained, as it needed to be. The post election 2022 results required that. He is not in the same position he was before last Tuesday. I know the results surprised him and took some of the air out of the moment. No elected officials were in the room. His son Donald Jr. and daughter Ivanka weren’t there either. Some called the hour long speech “low energy.” In fact, Jeb Bush Jr. tweeted this: “What a low energy speech by the Donald. … #SleepyDonnie.” How funny is that?
No need for me to get into the details except to say he did not address the Jan. 6th events that hang over him, especially as his VP’s book is released and Pence lays out the failures of leadership that day. No addressing all the charges against him and the family business. At some point he needs to address the former for us all.
Now, he’ll never get a fair shake from the media. Here are some examples from yesterday that may surprise you: Did you see any coverage that a US judge dismissed a lawsuit by Trump’s former lawyer and employee, Michael Cohen, that accused Trump and AG Barr of abruptly returning him to prison in retaliation for writing a tell-all memoir? We saw lots of coverage when it was announced, but not yesterday.
Did you see that a NY judge dropped charges from his niece in her inheritance lawsuit? It sure got a lot of coverage when she accused him of stealing her money.
Did you see that prosecutors dropped charges against Rudy Giuliani over his work on issues related to Ukraine? Well, they did, and you sure heard a lot about it back when they brought the charges.
Kind of ironic that post-election all these charges are dropped, isn’t it? It could make one a skeptic and reminds me of the famous statement by Raymond Donovan after all charges were laughed out of court: “Which office do I go to to get my reputation back?”
There’s So Much More Noise In The News
There’s lots more news to cover, but most of it is noise. Russian missile strike? It turns out to be something else apparently. Republicans meet and McCarthy does not have 218 votes. Just noise. When the joint vote is held he will. Scott is challenging McConnell. Just noise, the status quo will emerge.
So let me leave a thought on the issue we started with, Donald Trump and his message. I saw Majority Leader Schumer tell Republicans to change their message if they want to win. I don’t think it’s the message. I think people are fine with America First, energy independence and border control. I think it’s the messenger and not the message, and Schumer is wrong.
Here we are almost a week after the election and we have 18 House seats undecided. How can that be? We’re still counting! All we know is the Republicans have 212 seats won and the Democrats 205. Can you believe this? Why? Because we turned Election Day into election weeks and election months.
We turned going out to vote to we’ll bring the election to you and even help you fill out the ballot. Election night will never be what it used to be. It’s now election week plus.
One party was smart enough to figure how to play this game and the other failed to adjust and insists on day of. If the Republicans don’t change leadership and learn to play by the new rules they are doomed to losing. Sometimes in life you don’t make the rules, but you have to adjust to play by what they are. After losing the Presidency in 2020 they learned nothing. They proceeded to take the opportunity of 2022 and flush it away.
When 70% of the nation believes the the country is going in the wrong direction and the party who owned the Presidency, Senate and House still beats you, well you better look inside and start replacing your leaders. It’s this simple: You figure out how to make the rules work for you. Then you do it better than your opponent. If you can’t, get out of the way and let someone else lead.
The other Republican problem is Donald Trump. We haven’t been shy here condemning his actions, and he continues to add fuel to his distasteful actions. Going this week after two Governors in his own party who have won and are bright voices is beyond disgraceful. Why is he going after them? Because his massive ego cannot take the two of them being popular. Only he should be in the party, as he sees it. As we wrote for the last year, the Democrats are crazy trying to indict and disqualify him. He is their best asset.
We will repeat here what we said last Wednesday morning. Donald Trump must go away, he is an anchor in any general election. Yesterday he said, “It’s not my fault.” Mr. President, you are cause number one at fault.
Now he’s apparently ready to announce tomorrow that he is running in 2024. All that will do is hurt the Republicans in the Georgia runoff. Democrats are urging him to announce, while his party is begging he not do it. This is a repeat of Democrats funding his election denier candidates in Republican parties – knowing they would be easier to beat. Donald Trump doesn’t care. He didn’t care two years ago in Georgia when the run off resulted in two Democratic wins and senate control. He gave Joe Biden and the senate the chance to do all the programs and judges he has pushed thorough.
He didn’t care with the candidates he supported to win the primaries in 2022. As long as they repeated his lie that the 2020 election was stolen. The same ones who lost the senate and governorships this year.
Every republican leader must stop bowing at the Trump altar. You’ve fed that ego long enough. It’s time for history to be the judge of his presidency. He is not the answer to anything in the future.
In the end, inflation is up, real income is down, retirement accounts are suffering, the border is porous, crime is rampant, gas prices are up and optimism for the future is lacking. A majority believe their children will not have life as good as they did in the future. 72% said we are going in the wrong direction. Yet, the party in control won control of the senate, increased their number of Governorships and won state legislatures. We’re not sure if they won house yet.
What does that say about the Republicans and the American people?
The people spoke yesterday, well actually they have spoken with early voting for months, but we counted what they said last night. What they said was not what the pollsters and pundits were telling us. There was no red wave, no red ripple… there was a divided nation. We write this with a senate that is likely to end up as divided evenly as it was before, pending a probable run off in Georgia again. We write this with the thought the GOP is likely to win the House, earning the 218 seats needed, but not many more. We write this as Democrats have picked up two Governorships. That is a divided nation, and the issues we were told that were most pertinent proved not to be. Yes, inflation was up there, but the border and crime seemed less important than abortion. The latter in exit polls played a bigger part of the final vote than others.
So Now What?
We are going to have one major run off in Georgia. It will decide control of the senate. We head into two years of divided government. Even a three vote majority in the House opens things for the GOP to control committees and conduct investigations. Look what the Democrats did with a 50/50 senate and the VP vote. Buckle up for that battle.
Next, the Democrats have to attack inflation and the economy. They need that under control. They also better be concerned about oil prices this winter and into next year. President Biden made clear we are not approving any new drilling and coal plants should begin thinking about converting to wind and solar ones. States will now be adding their suspended gallon tax back on and the administration will turn off the strategic reserve. The price is going up in the next few months.
The Republicans have to rid themselves of Donald Trump. He hurt the party big time, and if you are a supporter of his and don’t recognize it, then it’s time to stop and think. He chose candidates to support based upon their supporting he won in 2020. He didn’t. Look at his Governor choice in PA. The top of that ticket hurt the entire down ticket as he lost by so much. Look at his choice for the senate in NH, a winnable senate seat. Here’s how bad it was. Trump raised funds for his PAC. He didn’t spend it. He saved it for himself. However, the Democrats were so excited about running against Trump election deniers they spent heavily in Republican primaries to assure Trump choices won. Think long and hard about that before you decide what you want in 2024. Democrats spent more to support Trump choices than he did. All he cared about was they fed his ego and said he won. Let me add one more example of Trump action: In Colorado where it was thought the Republican had a chance to win a seat. Well, he didn’t support Trump’s election claims and the former President told his supporters not to support him. Thus, the Republican had to run against an incumbent Democrat and Trumpers. He never had a chance.
One more message to the Republicans. You need a new party head. One who understands the rules have changed and months to vote might not be your choice, but you better get in the game. Relying on one day to offset months is just ludicrous. You either get the rules changed or you play by them and figure out how to prevail.
We’ll leave you with this as 2024 now looms ahead. The best candidate for each party to run against is either the current or former President. The only way they can ruin it is to nominate that candidate and make their opponent’s day. That’s a sad statement, isn’t it?