August 18, 2015

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For another Trump day, we start with John Fund.

As much as I’ve slammed The Donald for his inconsistent and incoherent policy views, I’ve always praised Trump’s intelligence: “He is the P. T. Barnum of American politics, a brilliant self-promoter who knows exactly what he’s doing and who changes his opinions constantly to match what he thinks audiences want to hear, much as Barnum used to switch out circus acts between towns on his tour.” A liberal defender of Trump, former CNN host Piers Morgan, agrees: “He’s a smart, cunning, alert showman who knows what it takes to win.”


In the wake of last Thursday’s debate and his infamous “blood feud” with Fox News moderator Megyn Kelly, I have to say I was wrong. His swift, heady rise in the polls has brought out the inner Donald Trump, someone who could have stepped out of Animal House. …



George Will trumps the Donald. 

In every town large enough to have two traffic lights there is a bar at the back of which sits the local Donald Trump, nursing his fifth beer and innumerable delusions. Because the actual Donald Trump is wealthy, he can turn himself into an unprecedentedly and incorrigibly vulgar presidential candidate. It is his right to use his riches as he pleases. His squalid performance and its coarsening of civic life are costs of freedom that an open society must be prepared to pay.

When, however, Trump decided that his next acquisition would be not another casino but the Republican presidential nomination, he tactically and quickly underwent many conversions of convenience (concerning abortion, health care, funding Democrats, etc.). His makeover demonstrates that he is a counterfeit Republican and no conservative.

He is an affront to anyone devoted to the project William F. Buckley began six decades ago with the founding in 1955 of the National Review — making conservatism intellectually respectable and politically palatable. Buckley’s legacy is being betrayed by invertebrate conservatives now saying that although Trump “goes too far,” he has “tapped into something,” and therefore. . . . …




Rich Lowry writes on the “phenomenal incoherence of Donald Trump.”

… The loudmouth mogul may be very good at saying words, but coherence and consistency sometimes elude him. Especially when he gets beyond his comfort zone of extolling his own phenomenal awesomeness and calling America’s leaders stupid and the leaders of China and Mexico — the new axis of evil — smart and cunning.

After that, it gets foggy.

Consider his signature issue of immigration, where the incendiary words and stalwart tone evidently are a smoke screen for a poorly conceived amnesty scheme.

In a CNN interview, Trump outlined an amnesty via temporary deportation: “I would get people out, and I would have an expedited way of getting them back into the country so they can be legal.” How would the federal government, which can’t run the immigration system we already have, manage mass relocations of millions of people presumably to their countries of origin, only to be vetted and returned to the United States forthwith? “It’s feasible if you know how to manage. Politicians don’t know how to manage.” Oh.

As for so-called Dreamers, Trump has considered the matter very carefully: “We’re going to do something. I’ve been giving it so much thought. You know, you have, on a humanitarian basis, you have a lot of deep thought going into this, believe me. I actually have a big heart. . . . But the Dreamers, it’s a tough situation. We’re going to do something. And one of the things we’re going to do is expedite. When somebody is terrific, we want them back here. They have to be legally.”

There you have it — an immigration priority of the Trump administration will be legalizing “terrific” Dreamers after they’ve been deported/re-imported, on an expedited basis, of course. …




For a commensurate farce, we have “Donald Trump Through The Ages” by John Flowers.

The Death of Julius Caesar

So this is, maybe, a week after the Ides of March. I’m in Rome. I got a new coliseum there. Great coliseum. I build a lot them. Make a lot of money. Very successful. …

The Last Supper

I love Jesus, I do. But the guy can be long-winded. “Blessed are these people, Blessed are those people.” Basically, everybody’s blessed, but he’s gotta read through the whole Roman census before you find that out. …

The American Revolution

I would have people come up to me all the time and say, “Mr. Trump, Mr. Trump, you should lead our troops. You should have lead.” And I should have, because I would have ended the war, Day One.

I would have gone up to King George III, whom I know. I would have said, “Georgie, we’re leaving.” …

The Titanic

So they have this board of inquiry. They ask me to appear. They beg. Plead. Say I’m the only one who can make sense of this tragedy.

I show up. I don’t know what I can do, but I show up. They ask what I think happened. Everyone is saying, “The ship hit the iceberg, the ship hit the iceberg.” I tell them straight. I say, “No, that’s not what happened.” I say, “The iceberg attacked that ship.”

People are stunned. They never heard anyone say this before. They start clapping, start calling my name, they love me. They love how I tell the truth. I’m the only one who tells the truth.

I say, “Look, I know icebergs. Know a lot about them. No one knows more about icebergs than me. No one. …


Many Trump cartoons

August 17, 2015

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Craig Pirrong reacts to a WSJ article suggesting Turkey used supposed attacks on ISIS as cover for their continuing campaign against the Kurds.

Apparently the administration is shocked! Shocked! that Turkey took advantage of its deal with the US to hammer its real enemy (the Kurds) while leaving its frenemy (ISIS) virtually untouched:

Turkey has launched a series of aggressive airstrikes against Kurdish militants but has yet to turn its firepower on Islamic State in Syria as expected, increasing concerns in Washington about the Ankara government’s intentions.

. . . .

But some U.S. officials suspect Turkey is using its recent agreement with the U.S. to fight Islamic State as cover for a new offensive against Kurdish separatist group PKK.

A senior U.S. official said Turkey gave American officials assurances last week that it planned to wrap up attacks on the Kurds in short order, but it has kept up the bombardments focused on the group’s bases in northern Iraq near the Turkish border.

“It’s clear that ISIL was a hook,” said a senior U.S. military official, referring to Islamic State. “Turkey wanted to move against the PKK, but it needed a hook.”

Who knew? This was evident within minutes of the deal being announced, and should have been eminently foreseeable. The US got conned. Played. Pantsed. Obama and Kerry were chumps. Suckers. Patsies. Marks. So yes, the answer is (e)!

But by all means, after seeing them getting totally taken by a duplicitous Middle Eastern autocrat, we should totally trust their assurances that they have this Iran thing completely under control. With such an abysmal record of diplomatic failures, of which this is just the latest, Obama’s superciliousness towards the numerous critics of the Iran deal (supercilious, when he isn’t accusing them of warmongering and treason) is an amazing thing to behold.




In the Jerusalem Post, Caroline Glick says American Jews need to oppose the Iran agreement.

American Jewry is being tested today as never before. The future of the community is tied up in the results of the test.

If the Jews of America are able to mount a successful, forceful and sustained opposition to President Barack Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran, which allows the world’s largest state sponsor of terrorism to become a nuclear-armed state and provides it with $150 billion up front, then the community will survive politically to fight another day.

If the communal leadership and its members fail to fight, American Jews will find themselves communally disenfranchised. …


… By singling out and demonizing Jewish American opponents of the deal as corrupt, treacherous warmongers, Obama is setting the conditions for treating them as disloyal citizens can expected to be treated.

In other words, at best, Jewish opponents can expect to find themselves treated like other Obama opponents – such as Tea Party groups that were hounded and harassed by the IRS and other governmental organs.

AIPAC can expect to be subjected to humiliating, public and prejudicial probes. Jewish institutions and groups can expect to be picketed, vandalized and sued. Jewish activists can expect to be audited by the IRS.

In that meeting with American Jewish leaders, Obama seemed to present them with a choice. He reportedly told AIPAC’s representatives, “If you guys would back down [from their opposition to the deal], I would back down from some of the things I’m doing.”

Actually, he gave them no real options. Obama effectively told the leaders of the American Jewish community that as far as he is concerned, Jews have no right to advance their collective concerns as Jews. If they do, he will attack them. If they give up that right under duress, then he will leave them alone. So remain free and be hounded, or give up your rights and be left alone.

Some commentators have characterized the fight over the deal as a fight for the soul of the Democratic Party. This may be the case. But first and foremost, it is a fight over whether or not Jews in America have the same rights as all other Americans.

To be sure, Israel will be harmed greatly if Congress fails to vote down this deal. But Israel has other means of defending itself. If this deal goes through, the greatest loser will be American Jewry.



Debra Saunders says sanctuary cities are havens for criminals. 

“I am not remiss to say that from Washington, D.C., to Sacramento, there is a blood trail to Marilyn Pharis’ bedroom,” Santa Maria, California, police Chief Ralph Martin charged last week. On July 24, two burglars allegedly broke in to Pharis’ home as she slept. They sexually assaulted and beat her. Pharis, 64, a U.S. Air Force veteran, died in the hospital Aug. 1. It turns out that one of the two men charged for the crime, Victor Aureliano Martinez Ramirez, 29, is an undocumented immigrant against whom Immigration and Customs Enforcement issued a detainer in 2014. Ramirez has pleaded not guilty.

The case seems like Kate Steinle all over again. On July 1, Steinle was strolling on Pier 14 in San Francisco with her father, when a bullet pierced her heart. Authorities charged Juan Francisco Lopez-Sanchez, a seven-time convicted felon and undocumented immigrant who had been deported five times, with murder. He pleaded not guilty. If the San Francisco sheriff had honored an ICE detainer, Lopez-Sanchez would not have been in San Francisco on July 1.

I always thought there was a covenant with those who come to this country, legally or illegally. They’re supposed to be on their best behavior as a condition of staying. I thought President Barack Obama understood that when he promised to focus on deporting “felons, not families, criminals, not children, gang members, not a mom who’s working hard to provide for her kids.” But the administration has overly narrowed its view of criminal behavior, such that ICE targets only felons and undocumented immigrants convicted of three or more serious misdemeanors. …



John Fund says it’s Bill and Hill against the little people.

The late real estate magnate Leona Helmsley sealed her reputation as the “queen of mean” when she told a housekeeper, “We don’t pay taxes. Only the little people pay taxes.”

Hillary Clinton is under new scrutiny after the revelation that some of the e-mails on her now-infamous private server included information then classified as “top secret.” Her flat denial in March that classified information ever passed through the server was laughable at the time, and it’s been proven false now. But no one expects the Obama administration to punish Hillary the way it has so many “little people” who have mishandled classified data in the course of their government service.

Take former State Department analyst Stephen Kim. He’s now serving a 13-month sentence in a federal prison for leaking classified data on North Korea to Fox News reporter James Rosen, who in turn had his e-mail records searched by the Obama Justice Department without his knowledge. Journalist Peter Maass has made a compelling case that the North Korean material wasn’t sensitive: “According to court documents, one State Department official described the intelligence assessment as ‘a nothing burger,’ while another official said Rosen’s story had disclosed ‘nothing extraordinary.’” But Kim sits in prison nonetheless, a victim of the Obama Administration’s crackdown on the abuse of classified material. …

… But the rules on many matters were in Bill Clinton’s eyes only to be applied to “little people.” In 1996, Clinton had the nerve to argue in a Supreme Court filing that he was on “active duty” in the military, and thus immune from Paula Jones’s sexual harassment suit under the 1940 Soldiers and Sailors Act. (He later quietly dropped that absurd claim.) But soldiers under Clinton’s command were routinely punished for the same kind of misbehavior. Kelly Flinn, a female Air Force bomber pilot, resigned rather than face a court martial for lying about adultery to superiors. In 1998, the same year as the Lewinsky scandal, Sergeant major Gene McKinney was tried for sexual misconduct similar to that alleged against the president by Kathleen Willey. McKinney was acquitted of the misconduct charges, but convicted of obstruction of justice. …




Ron Fournier lambasts Jennifer Palmieri, Clinton spokesperson for her deflections, deceptions, and untruths. Here’s his close. The heavy type is Palmieri.

… “Hillary has remained absolutely committed to cooperating.”

This line would be laughable if it wasn’t so pathetic. From the start, Clinton has been committed to defying—not cooperating. 

“The server will remain private,” she vowed in March. Her attorney told Congress there was “no basis” to support a third-party examination of the server. Besides, he said, the server had been scrubbed. “There are no emails from Secretary of State Clinton’s tenure on the server for any review, even if such a review were appropriate or legally authorized,” attorney David Kendall wrote Congress. 

“This kind of nonsense comes with the territory of running for president.” 

No, it doesn’t. 

This kind of nonsense come with the territory of a Clinton running for president. 

The original sin is her decision to seize control of public documents. Clinton owns every ugly twist and turn, including harsh media coverage and GOP overreach.

“We’re committed to getting the real story out there.”

No, you’re not.