GOLDBERG – Spammers; NOONAN – American rebellion; WaPo: Be very afraid; CHAREN – Back to demagoguery.
GOP: FIELDS- Beck on Trump’s bullcrap; BLAKE – Big things for Ted; COLLINS – Trump calls Ted a liar; MOORE – America trumped; RUSHBO – Only Ted.
LEADS: FUND – O’Keefe tests NH law; ZEOLI – Twitter to sway election; HATTEM – More emails; WASHINGTON TIMES – Unhappy days.
PA : KNEPPER – Wolf’s hikes; SNYDER – Ups & Downs.
END NOTES: LEVIN 02/11/16; KABBANY – Colleges out of control; WATTS – Sun silent
Help for Veterans
Valley Forge Park has 5.4 empty miles and money to build huts for guys who suffered 200+ years ago. Room for vets??????
VALLEY FORGE PATRIOTS & CITIZENS FOR LIBERTY REACHING OUT TO HELP HOMELESS VETERANS
We at Valley Forge Patriots & Citizens for Liberty are trying to help. We are asking for donations of food, gently used warm clothing and blankets.
If you have anything you would like to donate and you are going to our Feb. 3 event at King Of Prussia Vol. Fire House , please bring it with you.
If unable to attend that event (but, you really, really should!), feel free to contact Janet Warnsdorfer at firstname.lastname@example.org or (610) 469-3268.
“Local GOP politicos believe the basic order reflected in older South Carolina polls — Donald Trump in the lead, Ted Cruz in second, Marco Rubio in third — still stands, but they can’t guess how close the contenders are to each other.” Byron York
“Hillary Clinton is struggling to connect with young women voters, so she’s brought in . . . Madeleine Albright?” Liz Peek
Jonah Goldberg, NRO: “Spammers at the Gates”
“. . . Whenever political conspiracy theories break out into the open, pundits and intellectuals name-check the brilliant but flawed essay ‘The Paranoid Style in American Politics’ by Richard Hofstadter.
“Under President George W. Bush, the ‘9/11 Truthers’ were the poster boys and girls of the paranoid style. Others hinted that the flooding of New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina might have been deliberate. Under President Obama, it was the “Birthers.” A related theory was that Obama is a secret Muslim. A generation before that, it was the John Birch Society and various other groups convinced that fluoridated water was a nefarious Communist plot. And let’s not even get started on the issue of who really killed Kennedy. “Such theories have been commonplace since the 18th century, when the Masons first took over this country and duped people into thinking elections matter.
“I kid, I kid.
Like many other contagions, such notions tend to get disinfected when brought out into the sunlight. And then we forget about them. The problem, however, is that the contagion is still there, like mold spores beneath the floorboards. Conspiratorial thinking really isn’t about politics, it’s about life. And it has no permanent ideological home.
“Indeed, ‘conspiratorial thinking’ isn’t even the right term. A better one might be ‘gnosticism.’ Properly speaking, gnosticism should be capitalized (even my spellchecker says so) because the capital G version refers to a heretical Christian faith born in the second century. There’s no need to delve too deeply into all of that, but the word gnosis means ‘knowledge’ in Greek, with a connotation of ‘secret knowledge,’ or, if you will, the hidden truth.
“In an era when everything was suffused with religious meaning and orthodoxy, the heretical Gnostics argued that the official story of Christianity was a ruse. They claimed special insight and secret wisdom. They knew the real deal. If the Gnostics were alive today, they might send you e-mail spam saying, ‘Click here to learn the five things the Church doesn’t want you to know about your eternal soul.’ “Today, religion doesn’t suffuse everything, and for many Americans it doesn’t inhabit anything at all. But the gnostic impulse is alive and well, eating away all forms of orthodoxy like termites behind the drywall. . .”
Peggy Noonan, WSJ: “Trump, Sanders and the American Rebellion”
“As institutions lose respect, voters think: Let’s take a chance.
“. . . We’re in the midst of a rebellion. The bottom and middle are pushing against the top. It’s a throwing off of old claims and it’s been going on for a while, but we’re seeing it more sharply after New Hampshire. This is not politics as usual, which by its nature is full of surprise. There’s something deep, suggestive, even epochal about what’s happening now.
“I have thought for some time that there’s a kind of soft French Revolution going on in America, with the angry and blocked beginning to push hard against an oblivious elite. It is not only political. Yes, it is about the Democratic National Committee, that house of hacks, and about a Republican establishment owned by the donor class. But establishment journalism, which for eight months has been simultaneously at Donald Trump’s feet (“Of course you can call us on your cell from the bathtub for your Sunday show interview!”) and at his throat (“Trump supporters, many of whom are nativists and nationalists . . .”) is being rebelled against too. Their old standing as guides and gatekeepers? Gone, and not only because of multiplying platforms. Gloria Steinem thought she owned feminism, thought she was feminism. She doesn’t and isn’t. The Clintons thought they owned the party—they don’t. Hedge-funders thought they owned the GOP. Too bad they forgot to buy the base!
“All this goes hand in hand with the general decline of America’s faith in its institutions.
“We feel less respect for almost all of them—the church, the professions, the presidency, the Supreme Court. The only formal national institution that continues to score high in terms of public respect (72% in the most recent Gallup poll) is the military. . .”
WaPo: “The utter ugliness of Donald Trump’s campaign should scare us all”
“. . . Both Mr. Trump and Mr. Sanders offer convenient scapegoats and simple-sounding solutions. For Mr. Sanders, the “greed” of the “billionaire class” has rigged the system against working people. Tax the 1 percent, and everyone else can have free college and free health care. Political obstacles can be swept away by a “political revolution.” America’s enemies will be fought by a mythical Sunni Muslim coalition. The villains for Mr. Trump are “stupid” people running the government who allow foreigners to take advantage of the United States. The solution — well, his solution — is to elect Mr. Trump.
“We think both men are dangerously if seductively wrong in their facile diagnoses and prescriptions. . .”
Mona Charen, JohnBatchelor: “Thursday 11 February 2016 / Hour 1, Block A”
“Mona Charen, NRO, in re: . . . this president has unilaterally changed legislation in a number of matters; also tried to rewrite EPA envtl legislation (just stopped by Supreme Court) and immigration legislation. Very little reaction by legislators to this. It‘s as though the voters think that electing a president is electing an emperor. Back to demagoguery: depressing, as both Parties have turned to people who are irresponsible, play upon worst fears and instincts – for his or own personal advancement. Trump: “We should just take the oil from Middle Eastern countries!” “Kill the wives and children of terrorists” “Build a wall and make Mexico pay for it” “Kim Jong-eun [DPRK dictator with nukes; quite unstable]: Have the Chinese get rid of him quickly” The overseas narrative about the US is that it’s immature and reckless; Euros think Trump is a credible American leader. If the GOP can’t mount a serious effort to [shift] this, it will destroy the Republican Party – as Trump destroys, inter al., Constitutional limits. Bernie Sanders is a different sort. Day of the Demagogues As the results of New Hampshire’s primary were coming in Tuesday night, some commentators on Twitter were jubilant about the “disruption” the victories of an inane socialist demagogue and a foul-mouthed nationalist demagogue represented to the “establishment.” Yes, mobs are disruptive. Madame DeFarge enjoyed a good shakeup herself. Senator Bernie Sanders believes that eight years of the most leftist president in American history have left the plutocrats in total control. Channeling the late Hugo Chavez, he promises to lift the minimum wage to $15 per hour, provide free college educations for all, and deliver universal health care (with only a small tax on the middle class). How will he pay for it? “With a tax on Wall Street speculation.” http://www.nationalreview.com/article/431122/bernie-sanders-donald-trump-wall-street-immigration-demagoguery
GOP . . .
Michelle Fields, BigGovt: “Glenn Beck on Trump’s Christian Faith: ‘Biggest Crock of Bullcrap I’ve Ever Heard’”
“TV host Glenn Beck attacked Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump Thursday, saying “too many people are looking at Trump and believing that man has ever opened a Bible … that’s the biggest crock of bullcrap I’ve ever heard.”
Beck, founder of TheBlaze.com, spoke at a rally in South Carolina for Republican presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX)>
“‘I’m going to be very blunt with you tonight,’ Beck said. ‘Donald Trump is very dangerous in my opinion.’
Beck criticized those who believe that this country can be saved by a man who creates ‘gaudy buildings.’
He argued that Trump can’t just “come in and magically fix us.”
“‘He’s gone bankrupt four times,’ Beck added. ‘You can’t declare bankruptcy as a country.’ . . .”
Aaron Blake, WaPo: “Don’t sleep on Ted Cruz. The next five weeks look very, very good for him.”
“Cruz’s win in the Iowa caucuses last week was, as it has been for every recent GOP Iowa winner, heavily reliant on evangelical Christians. He over-performed among this group, beating Trump 34-22 among them.
“Two points here. The first is that, yes, Iowa is a very evangelical state, and not every state — read: New Hampshire — has the same makeup. In fact, New Hampshire is the least religious state in the country, according to Gallup, and PRRI reports only about 1 in 10 residents is an evangelical.
“In this regard, though, the next few weeks of the GOP race look a whole lot more like Iowa than New Hampshire. And that is fantastic for Cruz.
“It may not shock you to see the most heavily-white-evangelical states clustered in the South. Many of them are significantly more evangelical than Iowa, where 64 percent of the GOP electorate last week was evangelical.
“And here is the second point: The most evangelical states are pretty heavily front-loaded in this process — thanks in large part to the “SEC Primary” on March 1.
“South Carolina on Feb. 20 and a whopping six of the 11 states holding contests on Super Tuesday/”SEC Primary” Day on the first of March have more evangelicals than Iowa does.
And here’s where it gets even better for Cruz: Heavily Christian Kansas and Louisiana and heavily evangelical Kentucky vote just four days later on March 5, followed by heavily evangelical Mississippi on March 8 and heavily evangelical Missouri and North Carolina on March 15. In fact, if you exclude Maryland and West Virginia from the definition of “Southern,” the Southern states will all have voted five weeks from now. . .”
Eliza Collins, Politico: “Trump calls Cruz a liar”
“Donald Trump has a new line of attack against Ted Cruz — he’s a liar.
“Over the past 24 hours, Trump has tweeted five times in some variation that the Texas senator is not truthful.
“It all started Thursday morning with a tweet from the billionaire that Cruz was making negative robo-polls. Cruz flat-out denied the allegations Thursday to reporters before a rally in Fort Mill, South Carolina.
“‘We are getting reports from many voters that the Cruz people are back to doing very sleazy and dishonest ‘pushpolls’ on me. We are watching!’ Trump tweeted.
“‘I have no idea. We had nothing to do with them. I don’t know what they were. We had nothing to do with them. So I had read reports of what is being said but somebody else is doing them, not us,’ Cruz said.
“But Trump was not swayed. . .” http://www.politico.com/story/2016/02/trump-ted-cruz-liar-219190
Stephen Moore, American Spectator: “America Trumped”
“Trump is the anti-Obama in every way. (Not so . . .)
“Tuesday night was a moment of clarification. We learned two things about election 2016:
“First, Trump is a political force of nature and, though not unstoppable, is in a commanding position to win the GOP nomination. For all the talk about who among the governors and Senators who got 12 percent and 11 percent and 10 percent, Trump won more of the vote than Bush, Rubio, and Cruz combined.
“As Rich Lowry of National Review points out, ‘Trump won nearly every demographic group. Old and young. Rich and poor.’
“Second, Hillary is the Walking Dead. She isn’t going to president.
“Democrats are as glum as can be today, because the realization is setting in that they are going to nominate someone as likable to voters as Michael Dukakis. Tuesday’s vote was a resounding rejection by 60 percent of Democrats of Saint Hillary.
“Quick: What is Hillary’s message? A third Obama term? Voters overwhelmingly don’t want that. She’s reinvented herself so many times she has no convictions at all.
“Meanwhile, Trump surges. His splendid victory speech last night, was all about love of country — about patriotism.
“It is striking that Trump is the anti-Obama in every way. Obama blames America first for every problem on the earth, from global warming to terrorism. Trump emanates love for America and pledges to “make America great again.”
“Obama hates business. Trump runs businesses.
“Obama is a pessimist. Trump is an optimist.
“Obama is an elitist. Trump is a populist.
“Obama is a college professor and a community organizer. Trump is a job creator and a profit maker.
“Obama is incompetent. Trump is a professional — he exudes competence.
“A few thoughts and predictions going forward. . .”
Rushbo: “If Conservatism Is Your Only Priority, There Is No Choice Other Than Ted Cruz”
“. . . If conservatism is your bag, if conservatism is the dominating factor in how you vote, there is no other choice for you in this campaign than Ted Cruz, because you are exactly right: This is the closest in our lifetimes we have ever been to Ronald Reagan.
“In terms of doctrinaire, understandable, articulated, implementable conservatism, there’s nobody closer. . .”
LEADS . . .
John Fund, NRO: “James O’Keefe Stress-Tests New Hampshire Voter-ID Law: It Fails”
“Guerrilla videographer James O’Keefe and his Project Veritas team have for years documented just how easy it is to commit voter fraud in states ranging from Minnesota to North Carolina. In 2012, his undercover exposés at the polls convinced the New Hampshire legislature to pass a bill mandating that voters show a government-issued ID — even college ID cards are acceptable. If voters have no form of ID, they can sign an affidavit and still have their vote counted. The votes needed to approve the bill over the objections of then-governor John Lynch were provided by his fellow Democrats.
“This year’s presidential primaries were the first in which the ID law was fully in effect, so O’Keefe returned to New Hampshire to see how it was working out. He didn’t find the long lines and confusion predicted by liberal critics, but his undercover team found out just how easy it still is for non-residents to vote. He released a video documenting his findings.
“The video shows poll workers advising Project Veritas journalists how to skirt the rules in order to vote as non-residents. . .” http://www.nationalreview.com/article/431205/new-hampshire-voter-id-okeefe
Rich Zeoli, CBSPhilly: “Milo Yiannopoulos: Twitter Will Try to Sway the Presidential Election”
“PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Associate Editor at Breitbart.com, Milo Yiannopoulos, alleged that Twitter is on the verge of collapse and will try to influence November’s presidential election on behalf of the Democratic nominee.
“Yiannopoulos, during an interview with Rich Zeoli on Talk Radio 1210 WPHT, claims that Twitter’s management is obsessed with shutting down conservative ideas on the social media platform
“There is absolutely no question that that is precisely what is directed at…It becomes very, very clear once you start looking at who is employed at Twitter. This guy used to work for Obama. This guy used to work for Hillary.”
“He believes the company is struggling and will make one last attempt to sway the election while it is still relevant. . .”
Julian Hattem, The Hill: “State Dept. to release 550 Clinton emails over Presidents Day weekend”
“The State Department will release 550 emails from Hillary Clinton’s private sever this weekend, under pressure from a federal judge who earlier this week appeared visibly annoyed at its delayed efforts.
In a court filing late on Wednesday night, State Department official Eric Stein told the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia that department staffers have made “significant progress” on preparing the emails for release.
As a result, the department will now be able to release the roughly 550 emails — which represent roughly 14 percent of the 3,700 remaining Clinton emails — on Saturday, in the middle of the three-day Presidents Day weekend. The department had previously said that it could not release the emails until late next week.
Releasing the emails on Saturday “provides time to address any additional problems that may arise,” Stein wrote, “as have occurred in the past at this final stage in the process.”
Washington Times: “Unhappy days are here again”
“Hillary has cooked up a mighty Democratic stew that nobody wants
The marketing folks are reminded of the dog-food company that launched a campaign for its latest offering, citing veterinarians and learned researchers that the food was the most nutritious ever to make a canine menu, and the television commercials aimed at pet owners were the most attractive, the most clever, and the most expensive in the company’s history. But nobody was buying it. The company called in their senior executives to sit around a table for two days to figure out what the problem was. None of the consultants had a clue. Finally a junior executive at the end of the table spoke up. ‘The problem is,’ the(y) said, ‘the dogs won’t eat the stuff.’
“Hillary was the inevitable nominee eight years ago, until a little-known freshman senator from Illinois ate her lunch, dog food though it may have been. She had more money than anyone else, a great resume, a famous “wife of” riding a magic name, an enormous campaign organization overflowing with expensive consultants, and the only noise anyone could hear was a loud pffffffft! Nobody was buying.
“The years seem to have only withered her appeal, such as it may be. Like Winston Churchill’s famous pudding, her campaign has no theme. When she gets on the stump she squeaks without the bubble, and can only glower when someone asks her a question she doesn’t like. She gets lots of those.
“The infamous emails continue to leak from her infamous email server, which is now in the hands of the FBI, and the only reassurance she can offer friend and foe is that she’s never done anything wrong and anyone who says otherwise must be a member of the vast right-wing media conspiracy that so hounded her husband, who as everyone knows had never done anything wrong, either. The Democratic establishment that was only yesterday “all in” for her, no longer seems to be.
Worst of all, the shellacking she took in New Hampshire has emboldened her critics and may have given President Obama pause if he is tempted to put a leash on the FBI’s investigators who appear to be closing in on tell-tale emails. . .”
PA . . .
Leo Knepper, CAP: “Governor Wolf Includes a Retroactive Tax Hike in Budget Proposal”
“Governor Wolf gave his annual budget address to a joint session of the General Assembly on Tuesday. One of the strangest things about the speech was that he didn’t talk about any of the details of his 2016-2017 budget proposal. Instead, he spent nearly thirty minutes lecturing and insulting House and Senate Republicans because they have refused to give him the spending and tax hikes he’s demanded in the 2015-2016 budget.
“It’s hard to blame the Governor for not wanting to talk about the details of his budget proposal. As we noted last week, Wolf is insisting that there is a structural deficit; at the same time he’s also demanding that the General Assembly authorize a budget that spends even more money. To pay to cover the budget deficit, that his proposal makes worse, he is calling for numerous tax increases. His fantasy, or nightmare, budget includes a retroactive 11 percent increase in the personal income tax. Wolf’s income tax hike would include all money that you’ve earned since January 1, 2016. Since the budget doesn’t get passed until June that means taxpayers would virtually be guaranteed to have to write a check to the Pennsylvania Treasury to cover the difference.
“Governor Wolf’s proposed budget is so absurd that even left of center newspapers are calling him out on it. From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:
‘Gov. Tom Wolf is caught in a time warp. It’s February 2016, but he thinks it’s November 2015. That’s when he thought he had a “deal” with the General Assembly on a 2015-16 budget.
‘Earth to governor: There was no deal, there is no deal, and the proof is there is no completed budget for the fiscal year that is seven months old…In his speech Tuesday, the governor said, ‘We are going to have to face hard facts.’ Indeed. It is a fact that the compromise he favored last fall passed the Senate but not the House, so get over it.’
“Governor Wolf ran his election campaign as a realist who wanted to help out the middle class. However, his policy positions make it perfectly clear he’s living in a fantasy land at this point and is bent on increasing taxes on the middle class. Wolf’s budget pays lip service to improving efficiency to cut costs in some departments. However, he does not mention any of the areas that are the real cost drivers. . .”
Sy Snyder, PoliticsPA: 02/12/16 Ups & Downs
“Kathleen Kane. The Attorney General fended off the first major attempt to throw her out of office on Wednesday. The State Senate sought to formally remove Kane but fell short of the two-thirds threshold when the Democrats rallied around her. The AG was so happy she agreed to her first interview in months and kept the door open to a re-election campaign. Of course, the State House is still moving towards impeachment and her legal problems aren’t going away. Nevertheless, this was a rare good week for Kane.
Tom Wolf. This week Governor Wolf gave his second budget address despite the fact that a first budget was never fully completed. As a result, Wolf’s address was accusatory and alarmist with subtitles like “Commonwealth in Crisis” and “We Had a Deal”. We’ve previously discussed the possibility that the notion of annual budgets may be becoming a quaint relic. If the Governor keeps raising the stakes, however, he only stands to lose more when a deal doesn’t get done. It’s difficult to see how Wolf extricates himself from this mess and unclear if he can do in time to save his teetering popularity.
Pat Toomey. Pennsylvania’s junior Senator continues to benefit from the crowded Democratic primary. He is far and away the biggest fundraiser in the race and holds about $9.58 million in his war chest. As for his potential opponent it seems, given the number of attacks already launched against her, that Toomey and the NRSC fear McGinty the most. Yet while the Governor’s former Chief of Staff has been raking in cash at a good pace, she is also rapidly spending it in order to hold off two viable challengers, Joe Sestak and John Fetterman. So the Democrats remain divided while the GOP is solidly united behind the incumbent.
Lindy Li. The wunderkind candidate started off the week rather terribly thanks to the Rothenberg & Gonzalez Political Report. Gonzalez ripped Li, saying his interview with her left him “speechless and confused”. She recovered somewhat when she secured the endorsement of Congressman Cartwright among others. On Thursday, however, the DCCC revealed their first “Red to Blue” list and for the first time in memory PA-6 was nowhere to be found. Politics is a merciless sport and Li got knocked down this week, now it’s up to her to get back up.
Mary Ellen Balchunis. Mary Ellen Balchunis is one of the more intriguing politicians to pop up on our radar in recent years. The 2014 nominee got crushed by Congressman Meehan but that doesn’t seem to have diminished the fervor of her supporters. She wins local endorsements, and carried our reader poll, despite the opposition of party leaders. Now the DCCC is publicly backing her primary opponent Bill Golderer. In most cases this would earn a down arrow, but since Balchunis doesn’t seem to want their support anyway, a split is the best way to categorize her week.”
END NOTES . . .
Mark Levin (02/11/16)
“On Thursday’s Mark Levin show, The greatest outrage of this election is not the candidates who switch positions but the lack of justice in the case of Hillary Clinton and her email scandal. She needs to be pulled in front of a grand jury and questioned about her violation of the Espionage Act and other federal statutes. Instead of trailing the campaign in an orange jump suit she should be in prison in one.
“Also, Governor John Kasich will continue to remind us that his father was a mail man and how he balanced budgets. He claims to be the greatest governor in Ohio’s history. However, he expanded Medicaid to the point where the bank of Ohio will be broken in 5 years. Kasich says that we can’t leave people behind but is leaving behind the people in his state whose budget he destroyed.
“Later, DDT needs to make a comeback and would be an effective weapon against the Zika virus here and in the third world. The research is on the side of DDT as being safe for the environment, yet that didn’t stop the EPA and environmental activists such as Rachel Carson from stirring up hysteria over it. Thanks to them it was banned and millions in the third world have died as a result. Finally, Obama has thrown in with Hamas and there is no question that he is against Israel and what it stands for.”
Jennifer Kabbany, TheCollegeFix: “Why colleges are out of control”
“The following is a speech given on Nov. 17, 2015, by Jennifer Kabbany, editor of The College Fix, to the Temecula Valley Republican Women Federated:
“The current campus unrest didn’t just spring up randomly. What you are witnessing has festered and grown like a bacteria in a petri dish until this highly visibly public outbreak of campus lunacy showed itself in full force.
“What are these students so upset about? Are their lives in danger? Is their country being invaded by armed radical religious extremists? Are they made to denounce their God or be beheaded? Or are they forced by their communist government to hide their religious beliefs or be jailed? Are the female college students being raped and abused, forced into marriages and required to undergo genital mutilation? Are their children being kidnapped and sold into sex trafficking operations? Are they forced to abort their second or third child? Do they toil every day under a hopeless economic system that offers them no hope whatsoever to advance on their creativity, hard work and chutzpah? Are they starving – living on rice and beans and a portion of water and nothing more? Do they lack basic medicines needed to avoid an early death?
“The answer to these questions is NO. . .”
Anthony Watts, WUWT: “Solar cycle 24 activity continues to be lowest in nearly 200 years”
“. . .As you can see from the plots in Figure 1, the current level of activity of solar cycle 24 seems close to that of solar cycle number 5, which occurred beginning in May 1798 and ending in December 1810 (thus falling within the Dalton Minimum). The maximum smoothed sunspot number (monthly number of sunspots averaged over a twelve-month period) observed during the solar cycle was 49.2, in February 1805 (the second lowest of any cycle to date, as a result of being part of the Dalton Minimum), and the minimum was zero.(ref: Wikipedia)
“Below is what the NOAA Space Weather Prediction Center has offered this month. Sunspot count continues below the red prediction line. 10.7 cm radio flux is about at the prediction level, and the Ap geomagnetic index continues to rise, suggesting that the solar magnetic dynamo might be a bit more active, but that activity isn’t translating into increased sunspots or radio flux. . .”