Saturday, August 8, 2015
Earlier today I had a conversation with Governor Scott Walker of Wisconsin. He’s out on the campaign trail now. I started the interview with the late breaking news about Chattanooga, but also got him to focus on his one big item and why liberals, even when winning, seem so angry.
Obama could never trust Hillary to be loyal to his disastrous policies and controversial legacy. But Biden? Yes, he most likely would stay loyal to Obama. This has the potential to make the Republican race seem dull.
While the attention of the world was on the first Republican presidential debates in Cleveland on Thursday night, the drama in the Democratic Party may soon overshadow anything the GOP has to offer. Look at what’s happening on the way to Hillary Clinton’s coronation in 2016. All of a sudden, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), a self-identified “democratic socialist,” is within striking distance in some of the key early primary states. But the real action is with Vice President Joe Biden. Will he or won’t he challenge Mrs. Clinton? That is the question.
If we take our cues from The New York Times, Hillary should be worried. First came the story about two inspectors general seeking a criminal referral involving Mrs. Clinton’s use of her email server while she was secretary of state, and the potential mishandling of classified material. Then, after pushback from the Clinton camp, the Times pulled back, to some extent. No, it wasn’t a criminal referral, they determined on second thought. Yet now the FBI has opened an investigation, and they only get involved when crimes are alleged, or there is the possibility that national secrets may have been compromised.
Are we witnessing a situation like 1968, when Eugene McCarthy entered the Democratic primary race against then-President Lyndon Johnson, and when McCarthy did well in New Hampshire, then-New York Senator Bobby Kennedy decided to jump into the race. Will Biden be Bobby Kennedy to Sanders’ Gene McCarthy, in terms of challenging the presumed Democratic Party standard bearer, once it has become clear that the standard bearer is vulnerable? Have the media and their allies in the Democratic Party decided that Hillary is too badly damaged, and ethically challenged to win the election?
The news media are star-struck by The New York Times, which, allegedly, provides “all the news that’s fit to print.” As Accuracy in Media has repeatedly demonstrated, the news that the Times editors actually see fit to print is often full of bias, inaccuracies, and complete spin. And, sometimes, the Times transparently involves itself in promoting or destroying candidates.
Maureen Dowd’s recent Times column, “Joe Biden in 2016: What Would Beau Do?,” begins by comparing scandal-plagued Hillary Clinton with Tom Brady, and then proceeds to promote Vice President Biden’s chances by recounting the emotional words that sons Beau and Hunter apparently used to encourage their father to run for president while Beau laid on his death bed, dying from brain cancer.
“When Beau realized he was not going to make it, he asked his father if he had a minute to sit down and talk,” writes Dowd. “Of course, honey,” said his father, she recounts.
Lois Lerner emails obtained from the House Ways and Means Committee are displayed in Washington, Wednesday, July 30, 2014. (AP Photo)
A trove of IRS emails show top official Lois Lerner had a deep commitment to the Democratic Party and a significant dislike for the new conservative grassroots groups that formed under the Tea Party banner and sought tax-exempt status from the agency.
"Crazies" and "a--holes," were the blunt terms Lerner used to describe conservatives, who, with a Supreme Court decision striking down the campaign finance reform law, were bringing about "an end to America," she wrote.
The emails are included in a bipartisan report issued Wednesday by the Senate Finance Committee, which cited "gross mismanagement" and also "personal politics" as the root cause of the IRS mishandling of tax-exempt applications from Tea Party organizations.
Democrats on the panel emphasized the mismanagement, declaring there was no evidence the groups were singled out because they were conservative. They cited lack of training, lack of oversight and ineptitude as the main culprits in the mishandling of hundreds of tax-exempt applicants that were subjected to extra scrutiny and delays.
"The results of this in-depth, bipartisan investigation showcase pure bureaucratic mismanagement without any evidence of political interference," said Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon, the top Democrat on the finance panel.
But Lerner, the former top official who oversaw tax-exempt groups, showed a true dislike for conservative-leaning organizations, according to her email conversations with her husband and associates.
"Well, you should hear the whacko wing of the GOP," her husband, Michael Miles, wrote to Lerner in November 2012.
"The US is through; too many foreigners sucking the teat; time to hunker down, buy ammo and food, and prepare for the end. The right wing radio shows are scary to listen to."
Lerner responds, "Great. Maybe we are through if there are that many a--holes."
The attorney for a top aide to Hillary Clinton when she was secretary of state has informed a federal judge presiding over FOIA requests from Judicial Watch related to Huma Abedin's employment status, that she will destroy electronic communications not already handed over.
“Ms. Mills does not believe that she has paper copies of potential records in her possession. Following our production on August 10, 2015 [of the defense counsel’s version of the electronic records], we have instructed her to delete any and all electronic records in her possession,” said the attorney.
Judicial Watch announced that the State Department today provided a status report as required by a July 31 federal court order requiring the State Department to request that Hillary Clinton and her top State Department aides Human Abedin and Cheryl Mills confirm, under penalty of perjury, that they have produced all government records in their possession, return any other government records immediately, and describe their use of Hillary Clinton’s email server to conduct government business. The State Department filing shows that the agency sent the former officials the request and a copy of Judge Sullivan’s order but that both Mills and Abedin, who responded through their attorneys, ignored Judge Sullivan’s request to submit information under penalty of perjury. The State Department reports that Mrs. Clinton has yet to respond. Contrary to both Judge Sullivan’s order and the State Department’s request, Ms. Mills’ attorney said that she told Ms. Mills to destroy federal records in her possession on Monday, August 10. Tonight, Judicial Watch filed an urgent response informing Judge Sullivan of this plan to destroy federal records.
The State Department produced the August 5 letter it sent to Mrs. Clinton, which included a copy of Judge Sullivan’s order.
The developments come in a Judicial Watch Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit that seeks records about the controversial employment status of Huma Abedin, the former Deputy Chief of Staff to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of State (No. 1:13-cv-01363)). The lawsuit was reopened last month because of revelations about Hillary Clinton’s email records.
Letters produced yesterday show that, on July 31, the State Department, for the first time, demanded that Mills and Abedin “return all copies of potential federal records in your possession.” The State Department did not provide correspondence demanding Mrs. Clinton return all copies of potential federal records. Despite the court’s July 31 order for immediate disclosure, the State Department and its Justice Department attorneys took six days to disclose the 13 letters, which total 19 pages.
Prior to August 5 court-ordered letters, the State Department had asked no questions of Clinton, Mills, and Abedin about Mrs. Clinton’s separate email system or classified material.
Think about the acronym POTUS, President of the United States. Now imagine Donald Trump when you hear the phrase POTUS. Is that thought merely surprising or terrifying?
Polls seem to indicate that at least some are willing to put the destiny of the United States, indeed of the entire world, into “the Donald’s” hands just because they are angry at the political system. Really consider Donald Trump and the kind of president he would be were he to actually be elected.
Who among us would feel comfortable giving this person complete control over the nuclear codes. POTUS is, after all, charged with the power to use them. At some point, Donald Trump becomes no joke.
Now that the primary debate season is underway, Trump is the first choice of 19 percent of GOP primary voters. In reality, that is actually a fairly tiny number of actual persons, but they seem to believe in Trump as the one best able to explain the issues important to a president, and in his dismissal of the debates as just a waste of his time.
Trump admitted that he has little experience in the exchange of ideas that debates entail. He sees as his strength his unwillingness to control his emotions and to engage only with bombast. In fact, it is those very qualities that have made Trump the centerpiece of these very early days in the presidential election process.
Electing a president is more than a game. Russian President Vladimir Putin will not be dismissed with the “you’re fired” catch phrase. Allies, like Germany’s Angela Merkel, are just as unlikely to be reassured by Trump’s assurances that he will “know just what to do.” Trump, however, seems to have convinced himself he is ready to run the country.
Trump set the rules on his TV show, but he certainly will not be able to do so in the debates or the campaign months ahead. We will now see whether he can operate without his own rules. On Thursday night, Republicans opened the first part of their process for showcasing their candidates for the office of president. A Trump true to his outrageous form is preferable for entertainment purposes, but for the good of the country, a more controlled Trump is a better outcome.
The debates are intended to give the public an opportunity to learn what choices we, as voters, will be offered. Up to the debates, Trump has certainly been clear about what kind of leader he will be. In the end, however, it is not the Donald but we, America’s voters, who must take responsibility for the momentous decision of who will be POTUS, the most powerful person on the planet.
[VIDEO] Trump on Obamacare: "Insurance Companies Are Making A Fortune Because They Have Control Of Politicians"
BRET BAIER, FOX NEWS: Gentlemen, the next series of questions deals with Obamacare and the role of the federal government. Mr. Trump, Obamacare is one of the things you call a disaster.
DONALD TRUMP: Complete disaster, yes.
BAIER: Saying it needs to be repealed and replaced.
BAIER: Now 15 years ago you called yourself a liberal on health care. You were for a single-payer system, a Canadian style system. Why were you for that then and why aren't you for it now?
TRUMP: First of all I'd like to go back to [Iraq] -- in July of 2004 I came out strongly against the war with Iraq because it was going to destabilize the Middle East. I'm the only one on the stage that knew that and had the vision to say it and that's exactly what happened. So I just want to say that.
As far as single-payer, it works in Canada, works incredibly well in Scotland. Could have worked in a different age, which is the age you're talking about here. What I would like to see is a private system without the artificial lines around every state. I have a big company with thousands and thousands of employees and if I'm negotiating in New York or New Jersey or California, I have like one bidder.
Nobody can bid. You know why? The insurance companies are making a fortune because they have control of the politicians. Of course with the exception of the politicians on the stage. But they have total control of the politicians. They're making a fortune.
It is a problem for small states everywhere overshadowed by mighty neighbours. How to stick out? And perhaps assert national pride at the same time?
On Friday North Korea came up with its own typically idiosyncratic answer, announcing that from next week it will use its own unique time zone. Pyongyang said that it will pull back its current standard time by 30 minutes, making it GMT +8.30, rather than GMT +9.
The move is a diplomatic salvo aimed squarely at Japan, the country’s former colonial overlord. Local time in North and South Korea and Japan has been the same since Japan’s rule over what was a single Korea between 1910 and 1945.
The North’s official Korean Central News Agency said that the establishment of a sovereign “Pyongyang time” was aimed at what it called rooting out the legacy of the Japanese colonial period.
The new time zone will take effect on 15 August – the 70th anniversary of Korea’s liberation from Japanese rule at the end of the second world war.
“The wicked Japanese imperialists committed such unpardonable crimes as depriving Korea of even its standard time while mercilessly trampling down its land with 5,000-year-long history and culture and pursuing the unheard-of policy of obliterating the Korean nation,” the KCNA dispatch said, in classically accusing tones.
North Korea now joins a select club of small, proud nations that have anomalous time zones. It includes the mountain kingdom of Nepal, which at GMT +5.45 is 15 minutes ahead of Delhi, its vast neighbour. Kathmandu adopted Nepal Standard Time in 1956. It has stuck with it, ostensibly in order to balance its sprawling eastern and western halves.
Mr. Trump: There. Is. No. Excuse.
8:41 PM - 7 Aug 2015
I stand with @megynkelly.
8:42 PM - 7 Aug 2015
While Trump has been at the top of the national polls recently, Fiorina has been considered a longshot candidate. This week may be a turnaround for her, however, after her highly-praised performance at the GOP debate, where she didn’t just dominate the early “undercard” debate, but was also favorably viewed as superior to many of the top ten candidates who were invited to the prime time debate.
Ann Althouse writes a perceptive commentary (hat tip: Instapundit ) on an aspect of Hillary Clinton that bothers me a lot, too: that wid...
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