Skip to content

America’s Mass Shooting Madness Deconstructed

August 13, 2019

America, we have a problem. Too many of our citizens have been releasing their pent-up furies by gunning down multiple strangers in public places. Just as alarmingly, these warped souls favor weapons specifically designed to gun down multiple strangers —20, 40, 60 or 100 fellow humans in as many seconds.

When three deranged mass shooters murdered 34 Americans within the space of a week earlier this month, we all started clucking at one another. As usual, our social media went haywire. (I can personally vouch for this, having triggered a Facebook firestorm that eventually gathered over a hundred comments.)

Who was to blame for our gun sickness? How would we solve it? Were guns themselves the problem, or could we point to the bubbling anger and fear that grip so much of America these days? How about the white supremacists, whose presence seems to be looming larger on the national landscape? Could we just blame the crazies among us? Or could it be something else, like the splitting of our country into progressive urban elitists and proletarian white reactionaries – two myopic and mutually hostile tribes? (Aren’t elitists supposed to be conservative while proletarians are socialist? Not in America!)

Of course, Trump emerged as a prime suspect, having allegedly incited the El Paso killer with his anti-Mexican rhetoric. Just a few weeks earlier, he had been skewered by the left for his “racist” putdown of the “Squad” – the four young Democratic Congresswomen who had been shifting their party’s goalposts sharply leftward. (Polite society apparently deems it racist if white people criticize individual people of color for any reason – Bill Cosby and a few other reprobates excepted.)

Trump knows how to rouse his base and alienate everyone else; he’s our divider-in-chief. The president might or might not be a racist himself, but he’s notorious for his “dog whistles” – those ill-disguised appeals to the racial resentments of working-class whites – especially the menfolk — who feel as if they’re being displaced and disrespected. If blacks, Latinos, gays and women can engage in strident identity politics, disparaging white males as perennial oppressors, it makes sense that some of those devalued white males would respond with identity politics of their own.

And yet… relatively few American mass shootings seem to be motivated by white supremacist politics, even if most of the shooters are white. In fact, the Dayton shooter was a leftist who endorsed Elizabeth Warren. (Did anyone blame her for inciting his rampage?) More typically, the Gilroy Garlic Festival shooter simply announced that he was “really angry” as he shot random strangers before being cut down by the police.

What about those brutal “assault weapons,” then? Semi-automatic handguns and rifles — those with the capacity to fire a dozen, two dozen or more shots without reloading — have accounted for 24 of the 25 deadliest U.S. mass shootings over the past 70 years. And yet they’re perfectly legal and easily obtained. Even Walmart sells them.

Righteous liberals and moderates have called for semi-automatics to be banned or even confiscated. The latter scheme worked in Australia, where gun deaths promptly plummeted. (Of course, the U.S. isn’t Australia; half our population seems to venerate guns as if they were stone idols.)

It’s too late to confiscate semi-automatics on these shores. Guns actually outnumber people in our ever-rambunctious republic — and at least half those guns are semi-automatics. We can’t seize them (or even ban sales of new ones) without the possibility of triggering a right-wing insurrection, so I’m convinced we should try a third option: ban private ownership of magazines that hold more than six rounds of ammunition. Seems sensible, right? Does anyone not intent on mass murder really need 100 rounds to bring down a pheasant or an armed robber?

Of course, the National Rifle Association has no intention of letting our legislators create bothersome obstacles to gun ownership, even though NRA members overwhelmingly support stricter gun laws. As long as so many of our elected representatives are sponsored by the gun lobby, it looks as if “thoughts and prayers” will have to suffice –- at least until the American people resolve to drive the lobbyists out of Washington.

What about all the madmen lurking among us? Aren’t they the problem? We rarely confine them to institutions these days, so they’re free to express their florid revenge fantasies by acting them out in public.

But here’s the rub: every country has its share of mental illness, yet the U.S. leads all “developed” nations in gun deaths by a whopping margin. Are mentally ill Americans crazier than mentally ill Europeans or East Asians? Probably not, but they have easier access to guns.

Seventeen states have passed some form of “red flag” laws designed to separate mentally ill people from firearms, at least while they’re judged to pose a threat. That means 33 states have no laws on the books regulating gun ownership among unstable individuals.

Opponents of such laws cite the unfairness of punishing anyone for potential crimes, and in fact, only a small minority of mass shooters are clinically insane. Angry, yes. Maladjusted, certainly. But do we really want to enact laws that isolate and discriminate against neurotics? Tough call.

Let’s round up some other suspects behind our mass-shooting epidemic. For one, Americans still worship success. American men, especially, are pressured to win big, and those who fall short can ferment in their frustration until they snap. (This isn’t a problem in more egalitarian cultures.)

We’re also a culture that worships fame; celebrities are our royalty. Any nitwit with a semi-automatic and a grudge can immortalize his name by mowing down multiple people in an orgy of gunfire.

Bullying looms large among younger shooters as a rampage motivator. “I’ll show them!” cries the poor ungainly nerd whose self-esteem has been shredded by his tormentors. And show them he does, even if he picks out his victims at random. Even if it costs him his life.

And let’s not forget the copycat factor, which probably played a role in the three successive mass shootings earlier this month. Someone on the brink of disintegration hears about a gun massacre, and an evil bulb flashes inside his seething brain.

Finally, we can always blame the media, certainly among the most polarizing influences in our dangerously polarized culture. Partisan TV networks, websites and radio stations are in the business of creating tribes; they crank out slanted stories guaranteed to raise the hackles of the faithful and confirm their belief that the other tribe embodies pure evil.

Regardless of whether Trump deserves his nightly pummeling on CNN and MSNBC, agenda-driven news is a destructive force; its purpose is to generate anger and division as well as tribal loyalty. It might not be fake news, but it’s willfully distorted news that cherry-picks the stories and angles most likely to inflame its chosen audience.

I can almost believe that the Russians have been infiltrating our media to divide us and drive us mad –- all the better to destroy American civilization and win Cold War II. But let’s face it: we’re already an angry nation –-  an angry nation with tons of guns and millions of alienated souls. If we keep encouraging anger and division, we have only ourselves to blame when some of our more volatile citizens lash out in deadly public rampages.


Rick Bayan is founder-editor of The New Moderate. You can find his three collections of darkly humorous essays in e-book form on Amazon for only $2.99 each. (Just search under “Rick Bayan.”)

1,168 Comments leave one →
  1. August 13, 2019 3:19 pm

    Good comments.But what is happening today in America is very different than what happens in foreign countries. Most of our issues rest in the trust in government, which began with the revolutionary war.

    We can blame anyone, but we need to only blame our government. NRA? Just read the history of the NRA and they supported 99% of governments efforts to make guns safe. They supported almost every gun control measure until the 70’s. It was not until government got so big, began using force through legislation and divided the country did the NRA begin opposing any gun legislation. Trust in government began to collapse in the late 60’s with Johnson’s complete and total lies about Viet Nam. Then the FBI raided the apt.of Ken Bellew in 1971, shooting him during the raid. To this day, the evidence used to support the raid is questionable. Ruby Ridge was another issue.But that Bellew raid changed the positions of the NRA resulting in Charlton Heston to say “You can have my guns when you pry them from my cold damn hands”. They have only become much less a supporter of our government and much more radicalized in the support of the wording in the constitution.

    Today one can look at the graph of peoples positions on the political scale. Up until the 90’s, it looked like a bell curve. Few at each end, with many in the moderate middle. Today, there are many more at each end, with the moderate middle a deep valley between two extreme mountain peaks on both sides. The left peak accepts and trust government completely, the right peak rejects and has little trust of government. This graph allows one to choose different years to see the changes over time.

    This is not a situation that is easily fixed especially with such divisive candidates
    for President in Trump, Warren and Sanders. Biden could be exposed as being mentally unable to be president, but even he has adopted the extreme lefts agenda.

    And gun control? These wackos will find many ways to kill multiple people. Just take a few minutes each time thinking about how one could kill many when you are in different environments. Its not that hard without a gun. Actually it is much easier if one justs thinks of the alternatives.

    • August 16, 2019 3:48 pm

      Ron: I guess the NRA has radicalized along with the right. And of course, the left has radicalized, too, leaving that crater in the middle. The biggest challenge for me, as a moderate, is to appeal to the more reasonable people (traditional liberals and conservatives) so they don’t latch on to the extremists’ world-view. We need to marginalize the intolerant ideologues at both ends of the spectrum.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 16, 2019 4:55 pm

        I am not a member of the NRA, I do not care what the NRA’s oppinion is.

        The FACTS – and everyone – including everyone here knows this, is that no proposed gun laws are going to do anything except make us “feel better”.

        I oppose ALL stupid laws that are just an effort to make people “feel better”.

        I do not know what the NRA’s position on “red flag” laws are – but in the past they have supported laws that bar specific people from gun ownership because of status such as mental health.

        There are myriads of reasons that this is a ridiculously bad idea – and at times int he past even the left was smart enough to understand that reducing the rights of people with mental health issues, would pretty much guarantee that people with mental health issues would not seek help.

        But the proposed Red Flag laws are worse. They would allow the police and others to screw over peoples rights subject to an incredibly low burden.

        I have no problem denying a person who was CONVICTED of a crime of some of their rights – like voting and gun ownership. Though we do need to be careful because quite often reducing the rights of convicted criminals increases crime.

        Regardless. there is not a principled issue.

        I would not take the right to free speach from a person with a mental health problem without meeting a very very high standard – what the courts call “strict scrutiny”.

        I would not take the right to self defense on a lower standard than I would use for free speach.

        The 2nd amendment is little more than a reiteration that we have the right to self defense.

        As with other rights you can not say – well you have the right to free speech – but you can not advertise on Television.

        And none of this view comes from the NRA.

        One of the reasons that I often characterize you as on the left, is you are constantly making this stupid argument that everything is about money or political clout.

        NO, It is about RIGHT and WRONG.

        When you target a group such as the NRA because they purportedly have influence you MAKE the issue whether they have influence, and not whether they are RIGHT.

        If Adolf Hilter contributed $1B to political action to support individual rights – I would praise him for it.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 16, 2019 5:06 pm

        “The biggest challenge for me, as a moderate, is to appeal to the more reasonable people (traditional liberals and conservatives) so they don’t latch on to the extremists’ world-view. We need to marginalize the intolerant ideologues at both ends of the spectrum.”

        What does this mean ?

        If you want to boycott Chik-a-filet – go to it.

        Though I strongly suggest that you take great care to be correct when you morally condemn others – because if you are wrong – I am going to be standing here morally condemning you.

        We are free to do lots of things that are stupid and make up look like fools.
        Wise people think before acting.

        Regardless, you are free to engage in persuasion – but you are NOT free to restrict the freedom of “extremists” to try to persuade too.

        One of the other problems that I have about this nonsenical idea that there is some moral virtue inherent to “centrism” or compromise, or the middle – is that history does not support that.

        Slavery was wrong, opposition to it was right. Those in the middle were morally compromised.

        I get really tired of hearing words like “extremist” used as a means to discredit and ignore someone. And can not make your use of “marginalized” into persuade using facts, logic reason.

        I do not care if a position is left, right, center, moderate, extreme, ….

        I care whether it is right or wrong.

        Do not tell me that you wish to silence someone because they are extreme.

        Do not tell me you wish to silence or “marginalize” someone.

        Tell me how you are going to carry the debate – with facts, logic, reason.
        Tell me how your view is correct – using facts, logic reason.

        I have little interest in where is falls in the spectrum of politics.

        I care whether it is right or wrong.

        Our founders were “extremists”, abolitionists were extremists, sufferagettes were extremists.
        those advocating for equal rights for women, minorities, homosexusals were extremists.
        They were also right.

      • August 16, 2019 5:18 pm

        Dave, there’s a huge difference between silencing and marginalizing bad ideas. Right now the extremists control the conversation, which only leads to more and more polarization. (We can agree that polarization is not in the country’s best interest, right?)

        As for my role as a moderate, I’ve explained this before: I don’t necessarily favor a middle course on every issue. I’m a boat balancer: when SJWs collectively blame white males for all the world’s ills and fling the word “racist” at every opportunity, they’re tipping the boat dangerously to one side; I aim to tip it back upright. Same with my opposition to extremist right-wing views.

        Am I more of a “statist” than you? Of course — you’re a libertarian, and I’m not. That doesn’t mean I’m in favor of the government running our lives. I believe in a sane balance between reckless extremes.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 17, 2019 12:07 am

        “Dave, there’s a huge difference between silencing and marginalizing bad ideas.”
        If government is doing it – then absolutely not. There is no difference at all.
        Subtle infirngement on rights is more dangerous.

        One of the reasons I do not like Justice Kennedy AT ALL, and one of the reasons I am not ever going to buy compromise as a principle, is because quite often compromise is WORSE than bad decisions.

        Bad decisions tend to fail bigger and tend to result in backlash – and we learn.
        Bad decisions are easier to reverse.

        Compromises are near impossible to get out of when we find they do not work as expected – and they rarely do.

        I would rather that you and the left openly try to ban all guns ourtright – then we can have the real debate over the issue. Your faux “common sense gun laws” approach is far more dangerous. It ultimately ends in the same place, but without ever having to have the real debate about the constitution and rights.

        “Right now the extremists control the conversation”
        False premise – you remain as free as always to speak.
        Regardless – Then do not listen.

        You are litterally making the same arguments that others here were making to try to silence me. That somehow the frequency of speech by one party imposes any limit on the speach of others.

        “which only leads to more and more polarization. (We can agree that polarization is not in the country’s best interest, right?)”

        The polarization is NOT being caused by our speech.

        Again you are not paying attention to posts here.

        I can go anywhere in this country. I can go to a grocery store, I can go to a mall, to work, to a concert, to a ball game …. pretty much anything, and not encounter polarization or division.
        Even on private things we sometimes fight about bitterly – like sports.
        With very few exceptions – we are not going to shoot each other, or ban relatives from Thanksgiving.

        There is only one issue that actually polarizes us. That is when one group of us – right or left seeks to impose their will on all of us using the force of government.

        That is it. That is the ONLY place we are seriously polarized.

        And the moment you grasp that is the problem – and it quite obviously is.
        Then you also grasp that at this moment the problem is not with Trump or the Right.
        It is solely with the left.

        If you doubt that – listen to the democratic debates.

        They are falling over themselves talking about how when elected they are going to impose their will on all of us by force. Trump comes up, but constantly things come up that have nothing to do with Trump.

        You say you want gun registration and restrictions on semi automatic weapons.
        Almost every candidate has demanded MUCH more. Several intend to acomplish that throudh exectutive order – despite the fact that Executives orders can only be used to:

        Direct those in GOVERNMENT, and then only as to how an existing law or an existing executive power is to be carried out.

        Regardless, we will have ‘polarization” – no matter who is president – we were highly polarized under Obama, as well as Bush and Clinton. Yes, it is getting worse.

        But regardless of when it was, the root was always the same – some of us trying to use government to impose their will on all of us by force.

        Nothing else polarizes us to that extent.

        And yes that polarization is dangerous.

        Ultimately when words and elections fail as the means of stopping one group from imposing its will on the other by force, what follows is violence. That was how we got to the revolutionary war. It was also how we got to the french revolution, and the civil war.

        So yes I am concerned – about the CAUSE of our polarization.

        I do not give a rats ass whether we agree on things politically.
        I would prefer a presidency that was calm and quiet – but NOT at the expense of diminished liberty.

        And that is the problem. the SOLE problem, the DANGEROUS problem.
        Not Trump, Not mythical white supremecy or inconsequential racism.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 17, 2019 12:47 am

        I do not care what SJW’s SAY. Bad or stupid speech – whether from the left or right is not the issue.

        It is what SJW’s etc DO that is the problem. Barring speakers from campus, heckling them until they leave. Demanding that force be used to not only prevent them from hearing ideas they see as unpleasant but to prevent ANYONE from hearing those ideas.

        I do not care how load you are. I do not care how much you speak.

        I care what you DO.

        No one is tipping the boat over with their words.

        It is with their actions or the actions that they intend to take if they ever get the power to do so.

        While I have problems with the screetching “racism” at everything. The problem is that it is false and it is backed by the demand that you be silenced.

        Calling Trump or anyone racist – is meaningless, if there is no expectation that the allegation results in action.

        Slurring someone is a prelude to violence. against them. It is the violence that is wrong.

        “Am I more of a “statist” than you?”
        This is not about comparisons, nor about labels.

        Labels are usefull when they efficiently communicate.

        But they are a problem when they are an excuse not to listen.

        It is irelevant which of us is more of what label.

        What is relevant is what works and what does not.

        I am libertarian because the older I get and the more experience I have the more I realize how incredibly rare success on the part of government is.

        Even those things that I – the libertarian think are actually the job of govenrment – government does badly. I can not think of a single example of anything ever that can be accomplished without government that is not far worse when done by government.

        You want me to share your views – to become more “statist”.
        Then PERSUADE me – using facts, logic, and reason that I am wrong.
        that the things you wish government to do – will actually work, will not on net be WORSE than doing nothing.

        If you can not do so – then government can not act on your wish.

        That is not libertarian – that is just the only moral way to act.

        Compromise, balance – all the other words you use – they are nice words.
        But they are just words. They are NOT principles.

        Compromise can be good or bad, Balance can be good or bad.

        Saying Compromise or balance answers no questions.

        There are situations where compromise or balance are a solution – sometimes the correct solution. But that is determine by the facts, by logic, and reason and by principles.
        Saying that something is a compromise does not add information. Nor does saying balance.

        Libertarianism does not give us the answers. It provides principles to help evaluate the facts and logic.

        But 95% of the issues can be resolved without a single libertarian principle – through simple utilitarianism.

        I am not personally utilitarian. I think utilitarianism is dangerous. I think that if the only principle you have is the greatest good, it is very easy to act immorally. I think that there are some instances where the greatest good is the WRONG answer.

        But the debate between utilitarianism and libertarianism (or anything else). is only relevant when what you seek to do can atleast meet utilitarian constraints.

        If you seek to do something where you do not KNOW that you are going to accomplish the greatest good – then you had better have a damned good principled argument for what you wish to do. Atleast 95% of the time pure utilitarianism gets us the right result.

        BTW I think utilitarianism is much like compromise, balance and your idea of moderate – it is a tool not a principle. But it has an advantage over compromise, balance, … it provides/demands measurable results, and if a utilitarian approach does NOT deliver the greatest good – that would be because you made a logic or factual error.

        One of the other reasons I am not utilitarian is that factual and logic errors are extremely common. Utilitarina approaches combined with bad facts or logic will produce bad results.

        But atleast utilitarianism should be self correcting – if you do not deliver the greatest good – you must correct your error.

        So I will make a very utilitarian proposal to you – and the entire left.

        I will agree to pretty much any law that the left or you wish to pass
        If and only if,

        That law includes explicity utilitarian provisions to measure its success – that I agree to.
        AND a reversal clause – and by reversal, I do not mean simply repeal.

        I will as an example allow you to impose whatever gun control laws you wish.
        But after 10 years the data MUST show a reduction in violent deaths AND overall crime in excess of existing trends. Merely continuing current trends is not sufficient. We get that by doing nothing. Merely reducing mass shootings is not sufficient – if the number of people killed in home invasions or other crimes rises more.
        If you do not get that result – then we are going to use the current law as a baseline and we are going to go the OPOSITE direction – just as far as you went.
        If you expand background checks and fail – we eliminate background checks.

        Regardless, the law YOU pass, must specify what you will do, a measureable beneficial NET benefit – not an artifact – it is not sufficient to reduce mass shootings, it is not sufficient to reduce gun deaths, you MUST reduce deaths from violent crimes. The law must also specify NOW exactly what happens when it fails – and that must happen automatically and must be allowed the same time to demonstrate success using the same terms.

        So tell me why that is not “moderate”, “Compromise”, “reasonable”.

        I will make a further prediction – if we had something similar as a requirement for all laws, we would pass almost no laws.

        I think that you know that gun control laws are not going to work, and you are not going to be willing to bet that they will where you have “skin in the game” where there is a consequence if you are wrong.

        “reckless extremes” – putting two words next to each other does not make a true assertion.

        Sometimes the extreme is reckless, sometimes it isnt.
        Sometimes it is reckless NOT to do the extreme.

  2. dhlii permalink
    August 13, 2019 6:21 pm

    As we go batshit crazy over “white supremacy”, I found this TED talk by a black man who essentially went “undercover” within the “alt-right” and discovered …. people, not all that different from himself, experiencing the same problems as he had.

    We will have assorted ism’s with us through to the end of humanity.
    But if we can not grasp that we are WAY past there being significant problems we are blind to reality.

    Every time I post
    “facts, logic, reason”
    What I am stating is that you can do anything you wish entirely inside your own domain.
    inject heroin, commit suicide – I may care, but it is not my right to interfere with your choices – even bad choices, so long and your stupidity does not cause actual harm to others.

    But when you seek to use force to constrain others – at the very least you need to be right.

    You can not use force against others to impose “your truth” on them.
    The only “truth” you are ever free to impose on others by force is THE TRUTH.
    One that is completely consistent with
    Facts logic reason.

    Approximately 4000 people were lynched in the United states from after the Civil war through to 1981 when the last lynching occured. There were only a handful of lynchings from the 50’s through to 1981.

    In the 60’s we had race riots in major cities in this country. The last of those was in 1992 after Rodney king.

    Numerous studies have demonstrated that institutional racism no longer exists in the US.
    And racism in any form has inconsequential impacts on minorities.

    When adjusting for all other factors – education, family structure, class,
    the data shows that race plays no measureable part in anyone’s success in this country today.

    You will do poorly – if you do not stay in school. White or black.
    You will do poorly – if you commit crimes. White or black.
    You will do poorly – if you get pregnant before you get married. White or black.

    There are numerous factors like these – all of which are inside our control, that have 1000 times the measureable impact of “racism” today.

    Yet the public discourse is a fevered swamp of accusations of racism. Everywhere I turn one group is denouncing the other has “hateful, hating haters”.

    To listen to the media, you would think that there is 20 lynchings happening a day,
    that blacks have to ride in the back of the bus.


    Facts, logic, reason.

    If the world does not ACTUALLY match the picture being painted for you,
    something is seriously wrong. and you should not trust those painting that distorted picture.

    Elsewhere I just read that a single year in college increases the overall oppinion that students have of those on the opposite side of politics by almost 10%.

    Righties with a single year of college increase their respect for those on the left by 8%, and lefties increase their respect for those on the right by 8%.

    To the extent this is accomplished it is because college forces us out of our bubble and exposes us to people whose views differ from our own.
    Or atleast it used to.

    Regardless, if you are ranting about rampant racism, about some purported surge in white nationalism, or white supremecy, you are out there with tinfoil on your head ranting about “the grassy knoll”.

    What is disturbing is that such a large portion of people today are suffering from this delusion that at a time when the US is the least racist it has ever been that race and white supremecy are somehow our most pressing problem.

    This is a problem that should not even be on our radar.

    • August 13, 2019 7:35 pm

      “What is disturbing is that such a large portion of people today are suffering from this delusion that at a time when the US is the least racist it has ever been that race and white supremecy are somehow our most pressing problem.”

      I accept the fact America is less racist today than ever before, but why does Trump use language and create situations that stoke those that have these views, specifically anti immigrant situations.

      There are ways to say things and not create the backlash that he creates. He may not be racist, but you sure could not prove it by me. Not because hemay be racist, but because he sounds much like the red neck bubba’s at the local pool bars that do nothing but talk about what the n=gg@rs and wetbacks did at work or some other situation.

      When one talks like a racist to generate the support of that group, one should not be surprised when you are identified as a member of that group.

      Ronald Reagan could have held the same political positions as Trump and he would never have been identified like Trump is identified because he talked and acted like a leader, unlike Trump that talks and acts likea ignorant, uneducated, obnoxious thug.

      It is not a dilusion. It is real because Trump makes it real. He feeds the left wing with sound bites daily and then when they use his exact words, he calls it fake news. The good news generated by his policies are being completely hampered by his tweets and spur of the moment news conferences.

      That is why he is going to lose by a fairly large margin. And we will be stuck with something 10 times worse than Obama given Trump will take down enough senators with him to put Shumer in charge. The onky benefit there is maybe McConnell will decide to retire before next election.

      • Priscilla permalink
        August 13, 2019 9:37 pm

        Ron, this is an honest question: What exactly has Trump said that is or sounds racist? Exactly how has he aligned himself with white supremacist groups? Because I read and hear a lot about his “dog whistles” and “white supremacist” language, yet, despite keeping very current on the things that Trump says and tweets, I have not heard him say or tweet anything that I would label as racist. Am I missing something?

        I remember when Obama inserted himself into the Trayvon Martin case by saying that, if he had had a son, that son would have looked like Trayvon. That, to me was a divisive and racially charged remark, which made it pretty clear that Obama was implying that Martin was the innocent victim of a racist cop. Is there a similar comment that Trump has made?

        Or are we just being spoonfed a lot of BS by an anti-Trump media?

      • dhlii permalink
        August 14, 2019 12:49 am

        I read the El Passo Shooters “manifesto”.

        While I has seen some on the right characterize it as an Eco Terrorist manifesto,
        That is an exageration.

        But it is true that the manfesto while more “right” leaning than left, is still a mishmash of right and left.

        I do not agree with almost anything in it. At the same time, it is not obviously “racist” or “white Supremist”

        Though I do not agree with the thoughts he expressed, they are not “way out there” – except that he was willing to murder for them

        This was NOT a KKK manifesto. In some places he expressed sympathy for illegal immigrants. He merely did not want them in the US and was prepared to kill to accomplish that.

        What disturbed me most about his “manifesto” is that, unlike that of the unibomber or Holmes, despite the political blending of ideas from the left and right (similar to the blending of Joseph Stack). it did not sound like the rantings of a paranoid schitzophrenic, and most of this young white male mass killers are paranoid schitzs.

        I strongly suspect we will find that the El Passo Shooter is deeply mentally disturbed.

        I suspect the same of the Dayton Shooter. Despite that shooter being practically Antifa – and no political confusion at all, AGAIN the reality is these guys are NUTS.

        We are not going to make any progress – if progress is even possible until we grasp that we are dealing with people who are:

        Near universally significantly above average in intelligence.
        They are going to figure out how to work around whatever obstacles you put in their way.

        Near universally mentally disturbed.

        The media and the left have made a big deal about the large number of mass killings.

        Most of these are NOT nuts. But those rarely make the news.

        These are instances of people who know each other – often intimately,
        they are tied to bitter divorces or personal conflicts like that.
        and they become mass shootings – because the place the shooter knows they can find the person they wish to kill is a mall, or a church or some place like that.

        But those stories do not make the national news – well except to identify the body count thus far this year and to have the media reassure us that all these deaths are the responsibility of guns, the NRA, republicans, racism, and Trump.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 14, 2019 1:08 am

        Trump is not “presidential” – he is not even trying.

        Obama on occasions was un presidential, but he did actually try.

        If the criteria is “presidential” Trump does not come close to any prior president.

        The relevant question is – does that matter ?

        Before Trump took office I would have said it did.
        I did not like it when Obama stepped outside the constraints of being presidential.
        Which he did not do that often, but still enough to annoy me and get my criticism.

        But Trump is almost never “presidential”

        So how much does that matter ?

        We each get a vote on that every 4 years in November.

        Personally, I am learning that it is much less important than I thought.

        I used to wish our president were faithful to their spouses and did not have sex with interns in the oval office.

        Clinton pretty much ended that fantasy.

        I still think lying under oath – even about sex is a really big deal.

        Nor am I happy with Trump’s past treatment of women – though he does not hold a candle to Clinton. Regardless, that was probably the key factor precluding me from voting for him in 2016. And may remain so in 2020.

        But that is a choice I get to make.

        I do not have a problem with the media – left right or otherwise – digging up dirt on candidates. I want them to vet them to find all the dirt their is.

        What I do not want is for them to transition from telling me about Clinton’s dealings with U1 and the Russians, and Trump’s conduct with women to telling me who I should vote for.

        To quite Sgt Joe Friday from Dragnet “just the facts Maam”.

        I get to decide how those facts effect my vote.
        Save the editorials for the editorial page.

      • Priscilla permalink
        August 14, 2019 7:49 am

        After the most recent mass shootings, Trump addressed the nation, calling for unity, condemning in very specific terms, white supremacy and other racist ideologies, and stated clearly his intention to seek and to support legislation that might keep guns out of the hands of those who might commit these atrocities. It was quite presidential, but it was ignored, in the frantic rush to blame him for the El Paso shooting, and the usual cacophony of voices claiming that confiscating guns from law abiding citizens will stop deranged killers. So my answer to the question of if it would matter if he were more “ presidential,” is no. Not in the least. He could deliver a latter day Gettysburg Address, mouth phony platitudes, and turn the other cheek when he’s attacked. None of it would matter.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 14, 2019 1:20 pm

        You make valid points.

        The press does not Treat Trump or his administration “fairly”.

        Each of us is individually the arbiter of what is “fair”.

        I do not personally care alot what the press says – because I no longer consider most of it neutral and accurate reporters of fact.

        I have little more respect for NYT or WaPo than for InfoWars.

        I am not for the most part ‘happy” with Trump’s “presidential demeanor”

        but Trump was inevitable. If he did not exist, he would have had to be created.

        Trump has grasped that under the right circumstances it is possible to take on those who “buy ink by the barrel”. That the press has gotten so overtly biased that it is possible to go toe to toe with them and prevail.

        I am not happy with the constant public combat between Trump and the press.
        But the answer is not for Trump to retreat quietly to the Oval Office and let the press smear him constantly.

        The press and the left has created a war, and the deciding factor in the war is ultimately going to be CREDIBILITY.

        The press and the left constantly claim that “Trump lies”.

        Yet Trump has been completely anally probed by the left, the press, the democrats, the FBI/DOJ and Mueller – and no one has found anything beyond the natural anger of someone forceably given a colonoscopy.

        This is important. It is critical for those on the left to beleive that somehow something was missed. It is critical – because if that is not so – they have been lying for several years.

        As I have said many times here. You can get past accusing someone of error.
        But if you accuse someone of moral failure – of lying, of crime, then either you prove your case or YOUR credibility is shot. We can easily forgive people for errors about facts.
        We can not forgive them for false moral slurs.

        Nor is Trump/Russia the only area this is true.

        I have also repeatedly said that ideas are important – and all of this exemplifies why, and it demonstrates why the LEFT is SOLELY responsible for the current bitter divisions.

        The concept of “Your Truth” vs. “The Truth”, The idea that everything is an oppinion and that all oppinons have equal merit, or that the actual truth is racist or hateful – all of this and more originates SOLELY from the left.

        Democrats as a whole may not grasp the fact that the philosophy and ideology that underpins the modern left drives the bitterness and failure that we face – but they are on the train none the less.

        Ideas matter.

        Absolute relativism leads to bitter conflict chaos destruction.

        It is not accidental that so much of what we think we know to be true – so much of what we are taught – in school, by the press, by professors, is FALSE.
        It is the direct consequence of the rise of an ideology and philosophy that subordinates facts to feelings and opinions.

        We battle here over gun control – even Trump is not pushing “common sense” “red flag laws”.

        Which are neither common sense nor will they be effective.

        There are legitimate questions regarding the statistical data we have on guns.
        It is arguable that OVERALL they make us safer – but it is not proveable to any high degree of probability. But the inability to prove that guns make us safer is NOT the same as proof that guns make us less safe. The data on that is pretty incontrovertable. From the absolute prohibition of guns, through to an assortment of restrictions there is no evidence at all that gun control in any form makes us safer.

        So why is this even an issue ? Why are we discussing doing things that we know ahead of time with certainty will have no positive benefit ?

        Because we live in a “post truth” society, because facts are just “my truth” – “your truth” is different. in the world of “your truth” “my facts” can be rejected, and substituted by “your facts”.

        It does not matter whether the issue is global population, gun control, climate change, or any of an infinite number of things that – some “consensus” – often of highly educated people all agree on. What the facts tell us what the data says – that is irrelevant – because it is at odds with the “truth” of some group of elitists.

        I have a great deal of respect for intellect, and I have objective measures like SAT’s and IQ that place me at 1 in 1000, yet I find more evidence of basic intelligence in the so called “deplorables”.

        I do not see actual evidence that “white supremecy” is on the rise.
        But even if it actually were – as wrong as white supremecy is – even it is by the evidence of history far less dangerous than views held by your average college professor.

      • August 14, 2019 12:11 pm

        First, I was critical of Obama on many things he said and if one could go back on this site, you would see how I addressed certain issues. But to list a few.

        1.Obama responded to the Henry Louis Gates arrest in Cambridge by saying “I don’t know, not having been there and not seeing all the facts, what role race played in that. But I think it’s fair to say, number one, any of us would be pretty angry; number two, that the Cambridge police acted stupidly in arresting somebody when there was already proof that they were in their own home, and, number three, what I think we know separate and apart from this incident is that there’s a long history in this country of African Americans and Latinos being stopped by law enforcement disproportionately.” The first two comments were fine, but the comment about African Americans and Latinos should have remained between himself and anyone investigating the issue and not made public.

        2.You have already address the Trayvon Martin comments and how race was brought into that discussion.

        3. After Ferguson and the policeman was not charged due to evidence showing how the incidence rally went down, Obama stated “I want my children to be seen as the individuals that they are, and I want them to be judged by the content of their character, I’m being pretty explicit about my concern. I’m being pretty explicit about the fact that this is a systemic problem,” Here again he brings race into the discussion which just fanned the right wing anti Obama rhetoric.

        So now we have Trump. He may not be racist, but his language and tweets say something else when they are all put together. And he gives the liberal media something almost daily, while they can ignore the fact that the Dayton shooter was a Warren supporter and very liberal.( I have seen little to nothing in the liberal press about that)

        1. Trump addresses the issue with Trump university and in that interview he states “Let me just tell you, I’ve had horrible rulings, I’ve been treated very unfairly by this judge. Now, this judge is of Mexican heritage.” And I can’t cut and paste his whole diatribe, but he goes on and on about the judge being Hispanic and belonging to some social club.

        2. He then has an issue with the Khan family and the wife is standing behind her husband like so many politicians wives who say nothing when the politician speaks. Trump addresses this issue by saying “I saw him, he was very emotional and probably looked like a nice guy to me. His wife, if you look at his wife, she was standing there. She had nothing to say. She probably, maybe she wasn’t allowed to have anything to say. You tell me,”. So here again the first part is fine, but why bring up the issue of the wife not saying anything with the history of him being considered anti-muslim. Why bring up the fact that those anti Muslims believe women are for sex and nothing else in the Muslim world and not to be heard from?

        3. Finally the last example. Baltimore. Is Trump the president of the United States or president of the Conservative States of America? His comments about Baltimore were way off target. He could make a point concerning the conditions and how the democrats have run down Baltimore over the years without describing it like he would the “shit hole” countries he described in earlier tweets. When he said “His Baltimore district is far worse and more dangerous. His district is considered the worst in the USA, Cumming’s District is a disgusting, rat and rodent infested mess. If he spent more time in Baltimore, maybe he could help clean up this very dangerous & filthy place.” In itself, this comment may not have been unacceptable, but put together with the multitude of negative comments Trump has made for years concerning immigrants, Muslims, blacks and Hispanics, it just was one more comments to build on the racist book. Describing Baltimore in this manner just gives the liberal press more gas for the fire.

        If I had large amounts of money to bet, I would be betting it today on a significant Trump defeat. I can not see Trump capturing WS, PN or OH and I can see him losing FL and NC. And in any state where a senator like NC is running, I would wager money on the democrat defeating the incumbent GOP senator due to the anti Trump vote. We already saw that in NC local elections in 2018 with democrat sheriffs taking offices in counties that have not had democrat sheriffs in 20+ years.

      • Priscilla permalink
        August 14, 2019 12:41 pm

        Ron, I wasn’t implying that you haven’t been equally critical of Democrats, like Obama and others. If anything, you have been more critical of them, and I think that they deserve it.

        My point in contrasting the Trayvon Martin comment by Obama and the rat-infested Baltimore district represented by Cummings comment by Trump, is that Trump’s comment was in direct response to Cummings’ remarks about the conditions at the border ~ remarks in which Cummings specifically blamed Trump for those conditions. Trump responded that conditions in Cummings’ district were worse, and he is right.

        Extreme overcrowding at the border has been caused and exacerbated by multiple factors, but Trump’s neglect of the situation is not one of them. On the other hand, it is fair to say that Cummings has been in a position to have billions of dollars spent on Baltimore, yet conditions have worsened. So, I don’t consider Trump’s comments racist in anyway, merely because he pointed out that a rich and powerful black congressman has soent more time getting rich and powerful than he has representing his own district.

        The press which went crazy over Trump’s comments, never pointed out that Cummings’ comments came first, and were direct attacks on the president for a situation that is largely the fault of Congress.

        I don’t deny that Trump fights divisiveness with his own divisiveness. But that is not the same as racism or white supremacy, which is what he is accused of.

        There is no doubt in my mind that the forces arrayed against Trump’s reelection will be massive, and may well be successful.

        I’m simply suggesting that Trump is not guilty of the worst charges against him, and that we will be far worse off with any of the Democrats who seek to put the final nails in the coffin of American unity.

      • August 14, 2019 12:45 pm

        Priscilla, the issues with Trump are more his stupidity in running his mouth and saying the first thing that comes to mind than actually being a racist. After you stick your hand in the fire, it would seem like one would learn to keep it out. Trump has his base, always will. It is those in the middle that voted for him that may sit out the election and not vote at all this time that will lead to his demise.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 14, 2019 4:52 pm

        Lots of us are bothered by Trumps language. But I think it is wrong to presume that what he is doing is out of stupidity.

        It is a mistake to presume that people who have been as successful in as many different ways as Trump has are acting out of stupidity rather than intentionally.

        If the response of those in the middle is to sit out the election – Trump will win.
        Trumps committed base – despite the media is more than 50% larger than the committed base of the Warren’s or Sanders.

        Hillary lost because more people would NOT vote for her than would not vote for Trump.

        There is alot of evidence already that democrats have exactly the same problem they had with McGovern and Mondale and Dukakis.

        Absolutely the far left of the country is energized. Democrats can count on 25% of the country coming out to vote no matter what.
        But Trump can count on 40%.

        At the same time HALF of democrats are uninspired and are unlikely to vote.
        You can phone poll forever, what matters is who will get out of their chair, into their car, drive to the poll, wait in line and vote.

        Further I see the enthusiasm gap tilting even more to the GOP as the election approaches.
        Democrats have gone too far left.
        They are fighting with themselves. Trump is doing everything in his power to encourage that.

        Not only has Trump/Russia faded – but more and more the forces driving the story will favor Trump – the investigation of the investigation is on.

        The more time that passes the more the impact of the Mueller investigation will help Trump and harm Democrats.

        Trump must keep the economy afloat for another year, avoid a bloody war, and not have a health crisis. If he manages that – he wins – “biggly”.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 14, 2019 3:19 pm

        It is not racist to make a factually true statement EVER.

        If the facts do not produce the results that conform to “your truth” it is “your truth” that is wrong.

        It does not matter if we are talking left or right.

        I will be happy to see a serious discussion of how to better address immigration – particularly issues at the southern boarder.

        I do not precisely share anyone’s views. To the extent there is a “right” answer at the southern border there is not a chance in hell either side is going to head that way.

        In the meantime we enforce the law – AS IT IS TODAY, the actual law. Not the right spin or the left spin, not what we wish the law was, not by changing it with the phone and the pen.

        Trump appears to be doing that.

        If I or you or the left or the right do not like the law as it is,
        it is WRONG to demand that Trump not follow the law.
        We get our way by changing the law, and if we can not do that – then we enforce the law as it is – no matter how flawed.

        Regardless, it is not “racist” to enforce the law as it is.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 14, 2019 1:50 pm

        Here is Trump’s approval vs. Obama’s over the same point in their presidencies.

        You read the tea leaves differently than I do.

        Absolutely there are plenty of bits and peices of data to suggest a massive defeat for Trump and the GOP.
        But there are as many data points to suggest a landslide for Trump.

        All of us care intently so we are desparately trying to predict the future, but it still remains to early to tell.

        Except that I would bet – that despite polls, if the election were actually held today Trump would win, and that is likely to improve over the next year plus.

        Trump will win because the devil you know is better than the one you don’t.
        Because we do not jump ship in a good economy,
        Because Biden is just Trump-Lite – as Romeny was Obama-lite – why take an immitation when you can have the real thing.

        Because no matter how crazy the left tries to paint Trump,
        he is the actual president and he has not actually done anything crazy – no matter how you characterize what he has said.

        Because if the contest is about Crazy – Trump has incredibly effectively inspired Democrats to jump off the left edge of the planet.

        Because every historical instance of the democrats going left has resulted in a republican landslide.

        To beleive Trump is going to lose big – you have to:
        Beleive that historic patterns will not hold – that is possible, but the burden of proof rests with you.
        Beleive the press – something increasingly hard to do.

        Finally, I am not worried about an anti-trump disaster.

        The bad part if it occurs is that I am 61 and will have to live through 4 years of warren or harris or ….

        But a Trump defeat will just mean the backlash against the following democrat will be all the greater.

        How do you think 2024 will go if democrats wipe the floor with the GOP in 2020, and can not deliver 3% growth ?

        I am not inclined to give Trump high marks for the economy – this is just an average economy.
        But I think it is established beyond any doubt at all that the socialist lite approaches of Obama and Bush will leave the economy performing about 1% lower. 4 years of that will be soul crushing.

        I am sure you can find rafts of experts who will tell us that Trump’s economy is really Obama’s creation or that things will not return to sub 2% under democrats.
        But these are mostly the same people who told us that we could not do better than 2%.

        When our model of how the world works – politics, climate, economics, ….. does not track reality – it is not reality that must yeild.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 14, 2019 2:10 pm

        Much of the evidence you cite – is both true and was inevitable.

        I beleive every single place in the south that you note flipping red to blue is an area that has experienced dramatic influxes of people from elsewhere – mostly the north.

        We are in the midst of a sort of reverse great migration. Those red southern states that have become very prosperous, have also attracted masses of democrats to move in from the north.

        But I would note that Republicans did extremely well in Florida in 2018 – which was otherwise purportedly a good year for Dems. Much of what I am reading is suggesting that FL is flipping from a battle ground to a red state.

        And yes, I can absolutely see Trump winning the same – and more rust belts states he did in 2016.

        There is absolutely no possibility that republicans are going to take California. But the current evidence suggests that they are likely to recoup all or most of their house losses in California.

        There is a fair amount of evidence that 2020 will be a slaughter for democratic house moderates. They were elected on promises that they have been completely unable to keep.

        Trump is running a massive campaign financial jugernaut, he is collecting more than all democrats combined. More importantly something like 63% of his donations are from individuals contributing less than $250. Even Sanders can not match that.

        If everyone who has made a small donation to Trump votes for him – Trump has already won.

        I do not think money is nearly as important in elections as the left things.
        But I do think that small donations are a method of gauging ACTUAL support.

        Like every election this one will be determined by independents and those in the middle.

        But Trump has an absolutely rock solid base of about 40% of the country that he can count on no matter what. And not just for their vote, but for money, and to volunteer and to recruit others.

        Democrats have a similar rock solid core – but because they have gone hard left – that core is only 25%. That 25% has massive press support, and has a voice that dominates everything.
        But it is a shrill voice that alienates people, and it has zero effect on Trump’s base.

        And I speak specifically of Trump’s base – because that is NOT the same as the GOP conservative base – though there is some overlap.

        Democrats have done absolutely nothing to attract the democrats who voted for Trump in 2016. In fact they have further alienated them. it would take a miracle for Trump to lose most of the democrats who flipped in 2016.

        I would also say that with respect to the middle – Trump has not done nearly the job of alienating the middle as the left.

        Trump faces any democratic candidate with a larger and more solid base.

        I suspect that polls probably give democrats an advantage outside those two base groups.

        But those outside those groups must choose to vote.

        Democrats have tried to make 2020 an oportunity to vote against Trump.

        But they have not given us any sane reason to vote FOR any democrat.

        That means people stay home.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 13, 2019 11:23 pm

        I am not personally happy with Trump’s language, but I am atleast as upset with the nonsense claims that Trump “stokes” racism.

        In fact that is absolutely false. Sure there are possibly two people in the country who are wingnut nazi/kkk white supremecists – who exactly like those on the left think that Trump is sending them coded messages. But the reality is that almost no one sane in the entire country thinks that Trump is telling THEM to go out and beat up black people, or muslims, or ….. And in fact hate crimes are on the DECLINE statistically – they have been for a long time, and Trump has not altered the trend. If Trump is “stoking” racism – ordinary non-racist people – i.e. 99.99% of the country have missed that “dog whistle” – because it is not there.

        What Trump IS doing is “bear baiting”.

        Trump is deliberately saying things that most people – and particularly most of the people who are likely to vote for him, either say themselves, or would say themselves if they did not know they would be called racist, things that are NOT racist, but things that he knows that left wing nuts will claim are racist.

        Every single time that Trump says something and the left whigs out and screams “racist, racist, racist” and many of us listen to what he said and say not just “that is not racist”, but that is something I could or did say, Trump gains thousands of votes and the left loses them.

        And the loses them point is really important – because the left loses those votes – even if the republican candidate is not Trump.

        When the left screams “racist, racist, racist” in response to Trumps remarks, and lots of people think “they could mean me” – the left loses those people FOREVER.

        You can not call someone a racist and ever expect them to vote for you.
        You alienate them for ever.

        You can argue with people, you can tell them they are wrong.

        But when you move to telling people they are stupid, liars, racists, immoral, evil,
        You lose them forever.

        What Trump does is NOT issue dog whistles to white supremecists.
        He issues “wolf whistles” to the left. He dares them to attack him.

        Everytime that they attack Trump is a way that many many people can easily say “they mean me”, they left alienates more and more voters and empowers trump.

        I would point something else out.

        Trump attacked Cummings and called Balitmore rat infested. The left whigged out, and spent days ranting “racist, racist, racist”.

        But a bunch of Trump supporters got together and went into baltimore and started cleaning up. They gave their time, they improved many city blocks, and got rid of 14 dumpsters full of trash.

        Does not sound to me like Trump was spraying racist messages to his followers.

        The left is making huge mistakes in their personal attacks on Trump and his followers.

        When the left and the media called Trump racist for saying Baltimore was rat infested and full of garbage they were:

        Boldy asserting that reality is racist.
        Attacking people who want to “make america great again” and are ready to volunteer their own time to pick up trash in Baltimore, to improve a part of the country that may not appreciate what they have done and may hate them.

        I do not have to like Trump to grasp that:
        Trump is not the problem – the left is.
        That the problem predates trump by more than a decade,
        That the only thing Trump does is bear bait the left which is stupid enough to take the bait.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 13, 2019 11:25 pm

        Apparently you have missed the recent stories criticising Ronald Reagan as a racist.

        Reagan might have behaved differently as president if he were president today.
        But he would face the same attacks.
        The problem is not with Trump.

      • August 14, 2019 12:20 pm

        What they say about Reagan today is beside the point. The point is he was not accused of being racist while president.

        You can defend Trump all you want. But I define stupidity the same way Einstein defined insanity. Trump keeps making ignorant comments about situations and uses language the liberal press can jump on as racist and then expects a different outcome. He is not going to get it.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 14, 2019 2:19 pm

        This is not about “defending Trump”.

        I personally disagree with Trump on more issues than you do.

        We are not fighting over policies.

        We are debating our different views into the crystal ball.

        While I think I am right – I have zero problem admitting that this is all reading tea leaves and ouija boards. We are not mostly arguing about actual facts.

        We are arguing about how people will vote in secret in a little over a year.

        No this is not about how Reagan was treated as president.

        It is NOT 1980. The democrats of 1980 were completely different people than today.

        If Reagan or his clone was running today they would be treated EXACTLY like trump.

        There are actual real world differences between Trump and Reagan.
        But not a single differences that would protect Reagan from exactly the same attacks by the left as Trump experiences.

        My point – over and over is – it is not Trump or the right that is creating our political divisiveness. It is the left – entirely.

        At this moment democrats are actually turning on Obama. They are turning on Clinton.
        Even Biden is facing many of the same attacks FROM THE LEFT as Trump.

        The drum beat of racist, hateful hating hater are going to be present and LOUD no matter who is the republican candidate.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 14, 2019 2:25 pm

        I completely agree with you that Trump is continually saying the things you are saying he is.

        But I think he is doing so deliberately. And I think that it is not insanity.

        It worked in 2016, and I think it actually works better over time.

        Trump is giving the media and the left every possible oportunity to call him racist and deplorable.

        That will doom him – if the overwhelming majority of people – not just those on the left and in the press beleive his remarks are racist.

        But every single time that someone says “they mean me” when the press is talking about racists – the left loses a vote – FOREVER. You can not accuse someone of racism and expect their vote. Trump is very deliberately trying to bait the press and the left into insulting him in ways that alot of ordinary people think apply to them too.

        While I think that Democrats are SOLELY responsible for the divisiveness of public life today.

        Trump is absolutely taking political advantage of their mistakes.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 13, 2019 11:39 pm

        “Trump feeds the left wing”

        ABSOLUTELY – on that we completely agree.

        Trump is doing several things – deliberately.
        Not one of which is sending coded racist messages to white supremecists.

        He is DELIBERATELY baiting the left, and they are taking the bait.

        I do not claim to have a perfect crystal ball, but D’s took the house in 2018 on the promise that they would be sane and moderate.
        Trump has played AOC and the squad like a fiddle. He has driven Pelosi into the left wing of her own parties arms. He has left the democratic house looking impotent, hyper partisan and on the left fringe.
        Further the democratic candidates for president are falling all over themselves to move further and further left.

        Every republican that has ever successfully painted their democratic opponent as far left has won in a landslide.

        Democrats are bending over backwards to paint themselves as left wing nuts.

        I do not know about you, but come November 2020, as voters enter the privacy of the polls, I think you are going to find a large number saying:

        I really do not like Trump,
        But the economy is good.
        We are not at war.
        If I stay off the internet my world seems peaceful and good,
        and Trump’s opponent – Warren, Harris, Biden, Sanders, …. They are just completely nuts and it is just too dangerous to elect them.
        And things are better than during the 8 years of Obama.
        The best I can hope for from a democrat is 4 more years of Obama.

        Except it is worse than that – democratic candidates are actually attacking Obama now.

        I know that everyone here is fixated on Trump.
        But what I see is a colossal train wreck on the left.

        And just to be clear – that is NOT what I want.

        I do not think that an insane democratic house that is fixated on Trump’s taxes and impeaching him by hook or crook is an effective check on Trump should he actually get out of control.

        I am seeing something that is virtually unprecedented in my lifetime, possibly in this countries history. The destruction of a political party.

        You can come back from being too far left or right.
        You can come back from being wrong.

        But if you call voters stupid, racist, hateful hating haters, if you have not lost them forever, you have lost them for a long long time.

      • August 14, 2019 12:25 pm

        I guess it comes down to how well the GOP can motivate their extreme and the numbers in that group that wlll vote compared to how well the democrats do in motivating their extreme and the number that vote in that group.

        Because there sure is nothing left for a sane moderate centrist positioned voter to vote for.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 14, 2019 2:37 pm

        Trump is not on the extreme of the GOP.

        A significant portion of his “loyal base” is NOT traditional republicans.
        They are “the deplorables”, they are the blue collar people of the rust belt who traditionally voted democrat – and Trump owns them. They are not merely for Trump – they are enthusiastically for Trump.

        There is about 40% of the country that will support trump NO MATTER WHAT.
        Democrats can only count on about 15%.

        I would further note that while it has taken time, Trump has taken ownership of the GOP.

        The never Trumpers are mostly gone – or atleast gone quiet.

        Who comes out to vote in 2020 will matter alot.

        Trump is way ahead on the votes that he can absolutely positively count on no matter what.

        Trump is in a position to make a POSITIVE appeal to the center.

        You can make 10,000 criticisms of Trump – but his message to the middle is still going to be:

        You do not need to like me. You do not need to like the current political conflict,
        All you need to ask is – do you like the economy, do you like the fact that we are not shedding blood all over the world. Trump will have many many things that he promises to deliver on that will keep or improve our lives. And Trump will be beleived – because more than any other president EVER he has delivered on promises.

        While Democrats will be asking us to vote FOR some democrat who has spent the past 4 years making themselves look lije and extreme left wing nut, not becuase you are FOR the democrat – but because you hate Trump.

        That is a lousy strategy.

        I absolutely agree with you on what Trump is doing.

        The question is whether it is stupid or brilliant.

        I do not disagree that it is unpresidential and annoying.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 13, 2019 11:59 pm

        People know the “good news”.

        We do not need the press to carp on the economy, it speaks for itself.
        Trump does NOT need to message on his accomplishements – though I am sure he will brag about them. All he must do is not screw them up.

        Trump is playing an incredible game of chicken with China.
        At its core I think he is doing everything WRONG.

        But I am watching the data, and so far the risk of the same kind of disaster as Smoot Hawley seems remote.

        The global economy we have today means that if Chinese by goods elsewhere rather than from the US, then other countries have to buy those same goods – from us.

        Supply on a global scale is not elastic enough to meet China’s needs without creating a whole somewhere else.

        Further China just devalued their currency – that is a HUGE deal. That will completely mitigate the effect of Trump’s tarrifs on US consumers, BUT it will increase the damage to the chinese. They will be able to sell more goods in the US – but for the same total amount of money as when they sold less. Americans will pay less.

        It will make it harder for americans to sell into China, but it will do so by screwing the chinese people.

        We are watching as Hong Kong goes slowly to hell.
        We have some cognizance of the political factors – but most of us are unaware that there are economic factors. Growth in Hong Kong has weakened.

        There appears to be a serious danger of another asian economic melt down like we had in the late 90’s – except lead by china. China has a very serious debt problem. It is hard for us to measure because of the closed nature of the chinese society. But it is estimated to be 300% of GDP If true that is a big deal. Further China has been financing this economic war with China, and it is not far from running out of money to do so.
        China has been a global lender for a long time, they could be about to shift to becoming a borrower, and given their levels of debt they may not get good terms.

        China appears to be trying to stall until 2020 in the hope of getting a democrat.

        There are even stories that the chinese are actually trying to do on social media what Russia purportedly did in 2016.

        All that Trump needs right now is enough wind behind stories suggesting China is trying to beat Trump in 2020, and voters are going to flee democrats.

        Lots of this is speculation – based on stories and data I am seeing.

        I am not prepared to bet my IRA on it.

        But I am betting Trump gets a deal with China before 2020.
        China appears to have more to lose than Trump

        Look, I am opposed to this type of brinksmanship – even if it works.

        But that does nto alter the fact that if this works and does not blow up in his face, it will make it far harder for D’s to nail trump in 2020.

        In fact, it does not have to work. All that must happen is for it to not blow up in Trump’s face.

        Trump will benefit politically from a trade war with China, that does not noticeably negatively impact the economy.

        It does not matter if it is a wise move.

        Among other things it will impress people like YOU.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 14, 2019 12:30 am

        McConnell is not retiring,
        and Trump is not going to lose.
        I think he is likely to win in an actual landslide.
        I think republicans will gain alot in the house, and maybe take it back.
        I am less sure of what will happen in the senate.

        Trump has received record numbers of SMALL donations – that is abnormal for republicans.
        He is receiving more donations below $250 than any prior candidate.

        It is highly likely these donors are voting for Trump.

        BTW after Castro Doxed GOP donors in texas GOP donations spiked.

        That is my crystal ball

      • August 14, 2019 12:28 pm

        If you ever get to central NC after the election or I get to PN, the loser either provides me a Philly Cheesesteak or I provide some western NC pork BBQ because I don’t see Trump coming close to winning another term.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 14, 2019 3:05 pm

        I will be happy to by you a cheesesteak – no matter who wins in 2020.

        I will be happy to celebrate that it is over.

        though no matter what the fights will begin again the next day.

        I am not tied into NC politics. Though I am aware that NC is likely shifting from red to pink or even purple.

        There are an assortment of trends like that throughout the country.
        As I noted Florida appears to be moving from purple to pink or even red.

        There are many red states that are moving towards Pink, and many purple states that are also moving towards pink.

        I do not think local changes mean much nationally – though they mean a great deal for the people living in that state.

        PA and the rust belt went for Trump in 2016. that was unexpected.
        But Democrats have done absolutely ZERO to change that.
        These states did not flip because Hillary did not campaign there much – though she might have eked out a win had she done so. They flipped because Trump is speaking LOUDLY to voters there – and not republican voters. And that has not changed.

        There are going to be shifts throughout the country.

        Though I think Trump will win – and in a landslide.
        That will not have a huge impact on the congress.

        I think republicans will gain in the house – not because of Trump’s coattails, but because democrats failed to deliver on the promise of 2018. They thought people wanted impeachment. What they wanted was good divided government. I think moderate democrats are going to get massacred – because they did not live up to their promises.

        I do not know what will happen in the Senate.

        One thing we should grasp is that red, pink, purple, blue – each election for each office is individual. the GOP did very well in the senate in 2018 – and came very very close to doing incredibly well – while getting mascred in the house.

  3. dhlii permalink
    August 13, 2019 8:26 pm

    Dog Whistles ? Honestly Rick ?

    This crap is boring and tiring.

    Absolutely Trump talks to his base.
    But he does not use “code”. He speaks to it directly.

    Regardless, the “dog whistle claim is jut more stupid nonsensical effort to censor speach.

    If Trump was speaking to his base in “dog whistles” – by definition – you and the left would not recognize it. If you do, or think you do – then it is not a “dog whistle”.

    Regardless, Trump does not need to speak in code. What he says quite up front is perfectly clear.

    Whether we are talking about “dog whistles” or all kinds of other stupid claims to be able to read the minds of other people – and that is all that a “dog whistle” claim is – the belief that you can listen to what Trump (or anyone else) says and grasp the secret encode message that is being passed back and forth.


    It is immoral to attribute to someone things they did not actually say, because you beleive that is what they wanted to say or what they thought.

    You can not know the mind of another person.

    When judging another person you FIRST and foremost judge them by they ACTIONS.
    Even the Christian God who purportedly knows each persons heart, divides the sheep from the goats based on what they have done.

    Not what they have thought, not what they have said, not what they intended to do.

    Any claim you or anyone else has to being a good person, or a bad one is rooted solely in your ACTIONS, not your thoughts.

    I do not care if like Jimmy Carter you lusted for other women in your heart.
    What have you actually done.

    Nor is this specifically about Trump.

    I do not care whether you are making nonsensical claims that you hear and understand dog whistles, or know the intentions of another. I do not care who you claim to know more intimately than you possibly can.

    You are deep into Orwellian territory.

    Our public discourse is right out of 1984 with claims of thought crimes.

    For that is precisely what you are claiming when you assert that you hear and understand “dog whistles”

    A great deal of what is wrong with our public discourse, a great deal of what divides us is that much of out conflict is over things that no one has said or done.

    There is plenty of room for public debate over what has actually been said and done.
    It is nonsense to presume to fight over the idiocy that we know what other people intend, or are somehow saying in code.

    • August 16, 2019 4:08 pm

      Of course the left-leaning media brand Trump as a racist. (I challenge that view; I think Trump just likes successful people better than unsuccessful people.) But I still think it’s fair to say that his utterances, while not overtly racist, embolden racist sentiments that his supporters might have suppressed in the past. This isn’t entirely a bad thing: for too long we’ve been coerced into believing that any criticism of any person of color, for any reason, is racist. (That’s what CNN did to Trump when he criticized the “Squad” — every mention of his statement was preceded by the word “racist.”)

      On the other hand, we have to be careful that Trump’s freewheeling approach to racial issues doesn’t trigger a real rise in white supremacist radicalism. Like you, I think the reports so far have been greatly exaggerated (there’s far more anti-white rhetoric out there than anti-POC these days). But Trump needs to watch his tendency to mouth off irresponsibly. We need out president to ratchet down the rhetoric.

      By the way, I agree that Obama blew his chance to be a uniter. Here was an intelligent, judicious biracial man perfectly positioned to de-escalate the racial tensions that arose during his administration. Instead, he reflexively took the distorted Black Lives Matter position on every incident.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 16, 2019 10:24 pm

        I think it is a really really bad idea to presume that you know what other people are thinking.
        Whether that is presuming that Trump, or those on the left or …. are thinking something different from what they are actually saying.

        It might be true that they are saying one thing and thinking another.
        But there is still no way to KNOW anything except what they are saying.

        That problem becomes infinitely more complex when you claim to know what someone is thinking based on what they heard someone else say.
        Especially when there is no clear direction.

        If we are going to presume that Trump’s remarks trigger white supremecists then we have to presume the rhetoric of those on the left also triggers people.

        I would further note that generally people are more likely to be motivated to act by the words of those the DO NOT like that those the like.

        Cuomo nearly punched some guy out for calling him Fredo.
        A significant factor in Trump’s victory in 2016 is backlash of voters tired of being called racist hateful hating haters.

        If you go down this “triggering” road, you should be prepared – it leads to hell and the inability to speak.

        Between dictating that people can not say something because it might inspire some nut job to do something stupid, and saying that you can not say something because it might make someone angry and then retailiate against you or yours, ultimately you can not speak.

        Finally you just plain can not try to attribute rationality to the conduct of irrational people.

        If Trump “inspired” the El Passo Shooter as an example – then so did AOC, and Dr. Suess.
        While I do not accept the characterization of him as an eco terrorists – there is an awful lot in his manifesto that is right our of Paul Ehrlich (population bomb) AOC – Green New Deal, and Dr. Suess – the Lorax.

        Should we ban the Lorax now ?

        If you are going to game things and try to say – hear is someone who did bad things – and he gave his reasons – and I am going to focus on the reasons that justify my attacks on ideologies I do not like – but completely disregard those that reflect badly on my ideology – you are drowning in confirmation bias and cherry picking.

        We do not “NEED” the president to ratchet down his rhetoric – we WANT the president to ratchet down his rhetoric. They are NOT the same.

        I WANT Trump to ratchet down his rhetoric – atleast sometimes.
        There are times I get secret pleasure from his thrashing someone or group that I think deserves it, and who has no problem berating the rest of us.

        Regardless, I would prefer a president who projected calm and chose words carefully.

        I would also prefer a president who got government out of the way so that growth was above 2%.

        It appears that we do not get to choose a president who can BOTH behave calm and considered AND get government out of the way of the economy.

        Both Bill Clinton and Trump leave alot to be desired as persons, and their personal conduct as president was less than exemplary. But both are so far presiding over strongish economies. Conversely both Bush and Obama were softspoken and calming in their rhetoric. And both presided over weak economies.

        My point is “You cant always get what you want”.

        We get to pick – we can have Trump’s rhetoric along with the strongish economy,
        the radically diminished participation in foreign wars, Or we can have a weak economy with a president whose speach does not offend our ears.

        Or more accurately – when we vote – we are not going to get a choice that is what we want.
        No matter what. We get to pick among what is offered and we are always essentially chosing the lessor evil.

        If you think that is Biden – or Harris or Sanders – that is your choice.
        My vote is almost certainly going to the libertarian candidate – even if it is John McAffee – and he is crazy. But if I was forced to pick only between Trump and the democratic candidates, there might be one or two who are polling at zero that I could pick over Trump – but not a chance I am picking one of the leaders.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 16, 2019 10:30 pm

        In innumerable issues what bothers me most about Obama is not BLM or stuff like that,
        it is that he did NOT do any of the things that he actually could have done something about.

        This entire immigration mess was resolveable – in 2009 in any way democrats wanted, or after 2010 by compromising with republicans – and there was plenty of room for compromise.

        Prison and sentence reform should have been Obama’s issue. Instead Trump has taken ownership – what Trump has done is too little. But Obama did nothing.

        There was a real possibility for necescary reforms to policing in the US under Obama.
        But instead of noting that mostly our police are good people, but there is room for improvement, he jumped into Martin and Brown and end up on the wrong side of the facts.
        He actually made making progress harder.

        Furgesson (and my community) has a real problem – there is massive policing for the purpose of taxing the poor to fund government – that is a problem that there are facts to back up. that is something that Obama could have done something about.
        Instead he fixated on Martin and Brown and find that he had backed the bad guys and therefore could not accomplish anything.

  4. dhlii permalink
    August 13, 2019 8:44 pm

    Addressing “Dog whistles further”.

    Approximately 65m people voted for Trump.
    If we assume that somewhere between 1/3 and 1/2 did so reluctantly – deciding that Trump was the lessor evil. that still leaves about 40M voters who actually voted for Trump because they wanted him as president. That BTW squares reasonably well with the portion of his support that is unshakeable.

    When you talk about “dog whistles”, when you say that Trump is engaged in wink and nod racism, you are saying that 40M americans are white supremist, racist xenophobes.

    There is a twitter storm over “Fredo” right now. As someone apparently called Chris Cuomo “Fredo”. Skipping the fact that Cuomo has called himself and others “fredo” on the air – including Donald Trump Jr.. And ignoring the fact that Cuomo threaten to beat the shit out of the person who said it.

    Fredo has now magically become an ethnic slur – akin to calling a black person the “n word”.

    I have zero doubt that the person who called Cuomo “Fredo” intended to insult Cuomo.

    But now “Fredo” is coded speach for “racism” – despite the fact this was a white person calling another white person “Fredo”.

    All this pretence that you know what other people really mean when they speak, is akin to calling 40M americans “racist”.

    You complain about the divisions in this country. Calling 40M people racist does a pretty damn good job of dividing the country.

    If Democrats wish to win the presidency, it should be crystal clear they are going to have to win in the rust belt.

    Ranting about “dog whistles” and calling every white american in the midwest who shares Trump’s views on immigration or trade a racist, hateful, hating hater/xenophobe is NOT going to win their vote.

    I am told that 2020 is going to be close. I highly doubt it. I think Democrats and the media are doing everything possible to alienate as much of the country as possible.

    Purportedly the MAJORITY of registered democrats, are NOT keen on the long list of freebies that all the democratic candidates are throwing arround like candy.

    Alienating democrats is not the road to victory.

    Calling 1/2 or even 1/3 of the country white supremecist racists – is not the road to victory.

    Regardless, claims about coded messages, dog whistles and racism say more about the people making those claims than they do about Trump or his supporters.

    I am not a big fan of the average voter, but calling them all racists, or white supremecists, or deplorables, or russian stooges is not going to get their vote.

  5. dhlii permalink
    August 14, 2019 12:56 am

  6. Priscilla permalink
    August 14, 2019 9:00 am

    Rick, your treatment of the intractable gun debate is eminently fair, reasonable and moderate.

    The problem is that the “debate” itself is phony. There really is no genuine debate. Those on the left want to remove all guns from the hands of citizens. They don’t give a good goddamn if those citizens are good guys, bad guys, or crazy-as-a-loon guys. They simply want a compliant populace, which will accept their rule, and, then, when that populace realizes that the leftist rule has destroyed their prosperity and taken away their rights and liberties…well, they won’t be able to do much about it.

    Those on the right, who are constantly blamed for the fact that there are “too many guns” in America, are always on the defensive, and long ago learned that giving an inch will result in the left taking a mile. They are dug in.

    It’s like a football game, one team always on offense, the other always on defense, and the vast majority of Americans playing the part of the football.

    Do I think that there is something drastically wrong in our society, and that, whatever it is, it is causing young men to fall into nihilistic insanity, violence, and despair? Yes, I do. Do I think that this is happening because they have too-easy access to guns, or that reducing that access will solve the problem? No, I do not.

    Moreover, the more that the left insists that guns are the problem, the more I believe that this is a cynical strategy, meant to move the football down the field. And the more I sympathize with those on the right who, in addition to bearing the brunt of never ending blood libel, have come to believe, not unreasonably, that they will be the victims of government force, should the left ever get its way.

    • August 14, 2019 12:33 pm

      Has anyone ever heard the liberals blame the gun when a white police officer shoots a black man?

      • dhlii permalink
        August 14, 2019 3:12 pm

        Both Harris and Warren have come out and accused Officer Williams of murdering Micheal Brown.

        I think there is alot wrong with Williams conduct. A lone officer in a cruiser should NOT be seeking out confrontation over jay walking.

        But there is a gigantic gulf between Williams made mistakes and Williams was a racist murderer.

        I want the rules changed regarding policing. I want the police to be less driven to resort to weapons. I want police officers fired when there are questions about their conduct.

        Williams is not a murderer or criminal.

        He is just someone who should not be a police officer.
        There are alot of those.

      • August 14, 2019 8:24 pm

        You made my point that I asked in reply to Prescilla where she discussed guns in reply to Ricks article.

        Warren and Harris were not the knly dems to blame Williams. In every police shooting by a white policeman on black violator, its the policeman that caused to death. But whenever a shooter takes out multiple individuals, it is the gun that caused the problem and not the shooter. The first thing that come up is gun control.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 14, 2019 9:49 pm

        There is video from Hong Kong right now of protestors waiving the American Flag, singing our national anthem and demanding a bill of rights and specifically a 2nd amendment.

      • August 14, 2019 10:31 pm

        China will crush this. They cant afford letting it go on and spreading to the main land. It does not fit their 30 year plan, just like any trade deal does not fit their long term plan.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 15, 2019 2:19 am

        I expect they will – I beleive they have already cleared the airport.

        Regardless, doing so comes at a cost. We both are old enough to remember first Poland, and then later the collapse of the entire USSR.

        These things take time. There were several Solidarity uprisings in Poland that were shutdown, before progress was made. there were unsucessful revolts in Hungary and Checkloovakia. First Poland and then the USSR.

        I do not expect China to remain authoritarian for the rest of my life.
        But I can not tell if the transition will occur today or in 20 years.

        I find myself once again recommending Coases’s “How China became Capitalist”.
        It is a wonderful, book, easy to read, teaching economic and political concurrently.
        Coase ends by nothing that economic freedom alone can only take China so far, and that there really is not some distinction between economic, political and other forms of freedom.
        That China is close to peaked unless they improve political freedom.

        I was in China in 1998 to adopt my daughter – china is MORE totalitarian today than it was in 1998.

        We do not know enough about China to know for sure – but I think that Trump has china in a terrible bind. Devaluing its currency was a very bad sign (for China), It is a sign of serious economic weakness.

        Again we do not know enough – but do not rule out things like Poland and Solidarity, or even The Fall of Honecker. Today is probably not that day – but it is coming.

        Further Hong Kong is a big deal. At Tienamen square the protestors knew they were unhappy but did not know what they wanted. They had know understanding of western government, democracy or any of that. They had no exposure to those things.

        Hong Kong was a british protectorate. The people in Hong Kong are not nearly so censored and deprived of political constructs as those on the mainland.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 15, 2019 2:20 am

        The chinese governments long term plan is SURVIVIAL.

        And I would suggest that is far less assured than most of us perceive.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 14, 2019 1:30 pm

      This is not about “giving an inch”.

      Whether your “solution” is tiny or draconian, you are obligated to prove it will have a significant net positive effect before you may impose it by force.

      That alone is NOT sufficient, but it is still necessary.

      The data does not exist to support claims that ANY gun control laws are net positive.

      That should be the end of the debate.

      Nor is gun control unique.

      Pretty much everything the elites you chastize propose – has no net positive effect.

      I have constantly attacked the nonsense that is climate change.
      But even if we accepted the climate change religion as absolute fact,
      NOTHING that the left proposes would have a consequential net benefit.

      If the claims of warmists are true – we will be 4C warmer by 2100 – NO MATTER WHAT.
      If we implimented their schemes – most of which are litterally impossible – we would still be 4C warmer in 2100.

      Just like Gun Control – we manufacture a problem – one that real or imagined has no actual remedy, and use that to justify doing things that will not help with the alleged problem.

      What does it take before we cease beleiving people who have been wrong – Always and about everything ?

      And these are the people calling Trump a liar, and half the country racists ?

    • August 16, 2019 4:56 pm

      Priscilla: I don’t think anyone but a lefty extremist would suggest that we ban all guns; the argument has always been centered over two things: background checks and semi-automatic (i.e., “assault”) weapons. The Second Amendment notwithstanding, we don’t allow private citizens to own functioning cannons, flame-throwers and other military hardware; reasonable gun control advocates would simply add assault weapons to that list. My own proposal was to ban high-capacity magazines that enable crackpot shooters to mow down dozens of people within a minute.

      Will gun control solve everything? No, of course not. (That’s why I listed so many issues behind America’s mass shooting epidemic.) But if it prevents five or six mass shootings each year, it will have been worth it.

      I don’t remember if you saw the lengthy comment thread on my Facebook page when I railed against semi-automatics. One of my conservative friends expressed a viewpoint that struck me as a perfect vicious circle of almost paranoid reasoning: “the government is coming for our guns, so we need our guns to fight back.” Aside from the fact that 1) nobody is coming for their guns and 2) their guns would be relatively useless against Army tanks and drones, it seems like a pretty poor excuse for hoarding assault weapons. If they didn’t have those guns to begin with, there would be no need for them to use those guns to defend themselves.

      On most other matters, I believe that conservatives have taken it on the chin for much too long. But not on this one. There’s no need to fear a slippery slope scenario in which the government confiscates all guns; they’d have to repeal the Second Amendment, which would require the approval of 3/4 of the states. It won’t happen.

      • August 16, 2019 5:40 pm

        Rick is this Facebook page a personal page for personal friends or one where you make brief comments on current issues and followers can comment like on a open page? If so, what is the page name. I like Facebook as it limits the lenght of comments most people make. Ron

      • Rick Bayan permalink
        August 16, 2019 6:43 pm

        Ron: It was my personal FB page, which I use mainly to post photos of my walks. (Whenever I post anything on politics, it usually ignites a flame war between my conservative and leftist friends.) But I also have a New Moderate page on Facebook — really just a portal to this site.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 16, 2019 10:47 pm

        “The argument has always been centered over two things: background checks and semi-automatic (i.e., “assault”) weapons.”

        No Rick, the argument has not been centered on that.

        First those are bad ideas – we know they do not work.

        The Clinton era AWB accomplished nothing.
        And adopting “assault weapon” rhetoric just proves what you DO NOT KNOW.

        Nearly all handguns in the US are “semi-automatic”.
        All semi automatic means is that the fire one bullet every time you pull the trigger and you can pull the trigger several times without having to reload.

        Just about every gun in the country except bolt action rifles is “semi-automatic”

        The fundimental differences between say a Glock-17 and an AR-15 is that the Glock fires a heavier projectile – but at a much lower speed – because the barrel is shorter.

        But beyond that, the NRA and gun enthusiasts have made it perfectly clear they beleive the left has ZERO interest is “common sense” gun regulation – and it is absolutely clear they are correct.

        Listen to every single current democratic candidate. They are all after far more than re-instating the stupid and meaningless AWB and implimenting better background checks.
        BTW I do not think that a single gun used in a Mass Shooting was obtained without a “background check”

        Regardless, the AWB did not work. A stronger AWB will not work.
        Background checks will not work.

        There will be as many gun deaths before as after any “common sense” law you propose.

        Everyone knows that. Are you honestly going to argue otherwise ?

        Unless you are prepared to make an argument for whatever gun laws you propose based on FACTS – and evidence. All you are doing is acting on feelings.

        I do not want any laws about anything made on the basis of feelings. – not gun laws, not speech laws.

        After you manage to pass whatever stupid laws you want. There will be more mass shootings, and we will have this entire debate all over again – and we all know where it ends – with gun bans. It took almost 60 years to destroy our healthcare system incrementally.
        And we are still trying to bit by bit work our way to government provided healthcare – despite the fact that REAL DATA demonstrates conclusively that the less government the better and cheaper our healthcare will be.

        Progressivism is CANCER – eating away at liberty in small bits. Slowing making everything it touched sick, and using that sickness as justification for more poison.


        I do not care what the problem is. When you have a government solution that you can prove works – we can talk about making it into law.
        Until they LEAVE THINGS ALONE.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 16, 2019 10:52 pm

        Aparently you are NOT following the posts here.

        TODAY (and for all of US history), it is perfectly legal for a private citizen to own:

        A cannon – I know someone who owns about a dozen, and several other people who own one or two.

        A flame thrower – infact you can buy a TF-19 Flame Throwing Drone.

        Additional – you can own a Gatling gun – that was an immediate predecesor to the machine gun. It is perfectly legal as long as you do not attach a motor to the crank.

        Despite the fact that people can own all of these weapons of war – I have not heard of a mass shooting with a cannon, or a gatling gun, or a flame thrower.

        But if you make AR-15’s illegal – I suspect I will hear about them.

      • August 17, 2019 1:26 am

        It all comes down to weapon of choice. Young white males use assault rifles. Muslim terrorist use pressure cooker bombs. Anti-government zealots use truck bombs. In Germany and Canada they use trucks driven into crowds. I believe that was also used in NYC on a bike path.

        Just look around and anyone with one cell of brain material could find a way to kill multiple people, and in many case many more much easier than toting in rifles and multiple clips.

        Ban the assault rifle and bombs will replace them, or a vehicle. In Charlottesville 1 died and 28 were injured. Had that been moving at a rate much faster than 25 MPH, more than 1 would have died.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 16, 2019 11:00 pm

        “But if it prevents five or six mass shootings each year, it will have been worth it.”

        There is no “if” – either you can demonstrate that it will, or you should be done.

        We can not morally infringe on liberty if we can not at the very least PROVE that we will have a positive outcome.

        Mass Shootings in Austraila, did drop (to zero) after Austrialia confiscated nearly all guns.
        But mass killing deaths remain near constant, nut jobs shifted to arson.

        Hope is not enough.

        BTW even proving that you will reduce the number of mass killings is NOT actually sufficient – not even using a pure utilitarian justification.

        You have to PROVE that net deaths will drop.

        If whatever law you propose completely eliminates ever mass killing death in the US – average of about 29/yr over the lang run, but increases the number of people who are killed in home invasions by more than 29 – that you are actually proposing to change the law not merely to infringe on liberty but to actually make us LESS SAFE, and to increase the number of people killed – merely changing how they are killed.

        I find the entire gun debate not merely tiresome but evidence of the fact that so many have stupid knee jerk emotion driven reaction that they then pretend are somehow rational.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 16, 2019 11:19 pm

        “Aside from the fact that 1) nobody is coming for their guns”

        Rick – that would be called misrepresentation – hopefully willful blindness – the entire purpose of the laws that you seek to pass is to prevent ANYONE even law abiding people from having guns that you have decided they should not be allowed to have.

        Absolutely you are “coming for their guns”. Further unless you are deaf – you can watch the democratic debates – the democratic candidates are falling all over themselves to “come after your guns”. YOU might personally at this moment not be “coming after their guns” – atleast not the ones they already own. But you are blind and deaf if you are pretending no one is, or that nearly the entire democratic party isn’t. Further, quite honestly because you are unable to get past emotion and address the problem with facts – you are not to be trusted – not on guns, not on anything. We have myriads of examples where government infringed on our liberty – what it did failed – because it pretty much always does, and so government came back and infringed on liberty more.
        There will be mass killings probably from now till the end of time. They will continue NO MATTER WHAT LAWS YOU PASS. But if you are going to pass laws based purely on emotion – not facts, all that will happen is we will get new stupid laws incrementally until there is nothing left of whatever right you started to infringe on.

        “2) their guns would be relatively useless against Army tanks and drones”
        In Philadelphia a few days ago – they proved VERY effective against the police.
        If Criminals are capable of using guns effectively against government – why do you beleive citizens are not ?
        Regardless, it is YOUR argument that is flawed.

        If the citizens of HK had AR-15’s right now – do you think the police would be bothering them ?
        Do you think the Chinese military would be thinking Twice about coming into HK ?

        The purpose of an armed populace is NOT to directly confront the miltary in a set peice battle. It is to intimidate government, and to assure that government understands that if it goes too far there is a cost to pay.

        Regardless the purpose of an armed populace is to threaten POLITICIANS not the military.

        The purpose is to make sure that those who are holding weapons AND likely to be willing to use them, are the people not the government. While it is not impossible, it is damn hard (and unconstitutional) to use the US military against the US people.
        But then if the 2nd amendment is not worth the paper it was written on – why should we beleive that the restictions on the use of the military as a police force are going to hold ?

      • August 16, 2019 11:39 pm

        Fact: 24 of the 25 worst mass shootings over the past 70 years involved the use of semi-automatic weapons. How is it “emotional” to conclude that just maybe these weapons don’t belong in private hands? We don’t allow bazookas and tanks in private hands, so how is it a violation of the 2nd Amendment to ban gadgets designed to facilitate mass murder? (By the way, I don’t think you noticed that I favor banning high-capacity magazines, not the guns themselves.)

        As for the usefulness of assault weapons in fighting a tyrannical government… the Philadelphia police could have bombed that house, but they wisely chose to use restraint. (They didn’t want a repeat of the notorious MOVE bombing.) The government would probably respond differently if there were an armed insurrection.

        By the way, who among the Democratic candidates favors confiscating all guns? I’d be interested in finding out.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 17, 2019 4:58 am

        Fact: just about every mass shooting ever was committed by a male.
        Fact: 99% were commited by males under the age of 30
        Fact: pretty much all of them had mental health problems.
        Fact: a very large percentage have been diagnosed as paranoid Schozophrenics.

        Every one of those facts – and then some have Actual significance.
        You claim is merely correlation.

        Fact: Mass killings in Austrailia did NOT decline after AU confiscated all guns.
        Fact: The trends for Violent Crimes in AU from the gun ban to the present is indistinguishable from the same Trend in nearby and demographically identical NZ.

        Fact: there is no statistically significant correlation between a decline in violent crimes of any kind at all and any gun law of any kind – anyplace ever. No gun law ever implimented ever has had any impact on any trend.

        This should not be surprising because I do not beleive there is an example of ANY law ever successfully altering the trend it was implimented to “fix”.

        So yes, belief that “this time will be different” is an EMOTIONAL response not a factual one.

        Fact: 24 of the 25 worst mass shootings over the past 70 years involved the use of semi-automatic weapons.

        Unless you are going to call hand guns Semi automatic weapons (which they are) then your “Fact” is false”, Semi-automatic Long Guns are only present in about have of Mass Shootings. The Columbine killers had handguns – semi-automatic, because pretty much all handguns are semi-automatic, And an italian carbine No semi-automatic rifle.

        The Va Tech Shooter had only Handguns.

        BTW you have autmoatically skewed your statics by starting with “”mass shootings”.
        OKC involved no guns.
        9/11 involved no guns.
        Alone those two account for more “mass killings” than the rest of the entire last 100 years.
        Prior to OKC and 9/11 the worst mass killing in the US was in the early 20th century, it was at a school and it involved Bombs.

        “How is it “emotional” to conclude that just maybe these weapons don’t belong in private hands? ”
        Because there are approximately 350Million guns in private hands in the US – and more people die from poisoning from the things you find under your sink.

        Based on the numbers Guns – are SAFER than cars.

        “We don’t allow bazookas and tanks in private hands, so how is it a violation of the 2nd Amendment to ban gadgets designed to facilitate mass murder?”

        I have no idea whether we allow Bazooka;s and neither do you.
        I do know that we allow CANNONS, and FLAME THROWERS.
        I also know that even if we banned flame throwers you can make one from $15 in parts from Autozone.

        I know that the overwhelming majority of “mass shooters” share several traits two of which are: Smart, and Nuts.

        Do you really think that if you confiscated every gun in the US, that would stop them ?

        Mass killing is a rare crime. It has no effective counter of consequence. It is near impossible to identify the perpatrators ahead of time – despite the patterns there. Are you p-repared to lock up everyone showing paranoid schizophrenic symptoms in the US ?
        Diagnosed paranoid Schizes are only twice as likely to commit violent crimes as the rest of us – yet they make up about 50% of mass shooters – atleast the ones that are not estranged husbands killing wives and families – often in church – because church is a place that family anihilators know that they can find their victims.

        We know alot about mass killings. We do not know anything that will help us prevent them.

        Nothing. Banning guns is pissing into the wind. Columbine happened during the prior AWB.

        As I haver said repeatedly – which you just keep ignoring. No gun law ever has had a demonstrable beneficial effect on a crime trend.

        Expecting that “this time will be different” is substituting emotion for fact – and you know it.

        You do not honestly expect that any Gun Control laws will work – not if you are honest with yourself. You are hoping against hope. You are chosing to act in the only way that seems possible in the futile hope that just maybe it will work.

        But now some facts the other way. AR-15’s are used several times every year to successfully defend homes against multiple home invaders. Handguns are used hundreds of times a year to actively thwart crimes in progress. Home invasion rates are significantly higher in areas where criminals know there will not be guns.

        “By the way, I don’t think you noticed that I favor banning high-capacity magazines, not the guns themselves.”

        More ineffectual nonsense. No one is confiscating existing “high capacity magazines”.
        We saw the effect of that stupidity during the prior AWB too. There were inumerable ways arround the high capacity magazine ban and millions were sold.
        Both high capacity magazines and “semi-automatic” rifles sold in higher numbers after the ban.

        And your ability to interfere is getting less every single year.

        I have not tried to buy guns or high capacity magazines over the internet – but I doubt it is difficult. US Customs does not have the capability of searching every single package (or a tiny fraction) coming into the US. I have zero doubt that if you make something illegal in this country – you will be able to get it over the internet.

        When RU-486 was banned in the US – women were buying it from France over the internet.

        You can find the gcodes to build a perfect Colt 1911 on the internet – complete, no serial number. The equipment to make one costs about 1200, and you can make as many as you want. the same equipment will allow you to make the lower receiver for an AR-15 – that is the part that ATF licenses – every other part is readily available for purchase.
        An M16 lower receiver is just as easy to make as an AR-15. I do not know that the gcodes for an M16 are available. But I would be shocked if they are not.

        With a $100 3d printer you can make a one shot plastic pistol.

        And none of this addresses the fact that you will always be able to buy guns from criminals.

        There is not a law in all of existance that has EVER stopped a criminal from committing a crime. Someone who is going to murder alot of people does not give a flying fig about the laws you pass.

        Maybe they will build their own AR-15 (or M16). Maybe they will buy one from a criminal.
        Or myriads of other ways. Maybe they will build a flame thrower. Or use Bombs.

        The Anarchist’s cookbook is readily available on the internet for free. I have a print copy that I received from a friend who was a bit squirrely 20 years ago.

        What every law you pass – will absolutely guaranteed has a small but noticeable NEGATIVE impact on the safety of actual law abiding private citizens. It will have ZERO effect on mass killings and probably none on mass shootings.
        And you either know that or you are willfully blind. It is not like the actual facts have not been readily available for a long time.

        While the only documented beneficial effect EVER of gun control – is a slight reduction in GUN Suicides – over the long term the suicide trend is undisturbed, there are numerous documented negative impacts. Obama commissined the CDC to report on guns – hoping for a CDC report that would provide “ammunition” for gun control laws. But the CDC actually did a good jobs and found that the evidence strongly suggested that guns were actively used to thwart more crimes than were committed using guns. That more burglaries are thwarted by homeowners with a gun that all gun crimes put together. And the CDC estimated that the PASSIVE effect was about 3 times larger – that is the deterent effect on burglars who avoided homes and communities where guns were likely in homes.

        “As for the usefulness of assault weapons in fighting a tyrannical government… the Philadelphia police could have bombed that house, but they wisely chose to use restraint. (They didn’t want a repeat of the notorious MOVE bombing.) The government would probably respond differently if there were an armed insurrection.”

        Do you read what you write ? I thought I was the one who was presumed to be nuts here ?

        The Philadelphia incident was an extremely rare event – a drug arrest where the drug dealer actually decides to shoot it out. That almost never happens – even though we have over 200 swat raids in the US every day. It only qualified as a “mass shooting” because 4 or more people were shot. It had nothing to do with most of what we call mass shootings.

        Regardless, it is the job of police officers to arrest criminals. That is sometimes risky – as happened in Phila. Though Policing barely makes the top 10 riskiest jobs and is far less risky than fishing or farming. It is what police sign up for. It is their job. I expect them to do it.
        I expect that they will do it without killing innocent people – as they did at Waco and Ruby Ridge – and as you note Move. I expect them to do it if possible without killing the criminals.
        I have no problem with police working to keep themselves safe – But the sagety of the rest of us comes FIRST.

        If you can’t deal with that – and I personally could not, then do not become a police officer.

        “By the way, who among the Democratic candidates favors confiscating all guns? I’d be interested in finding out.”

        Its the internet – do you really think I can not find plenty of examples of that ?

        “Confiscation could be an option,” Cuomo opined. “Mandatory sale to the state could be an option.”

        Poughkeepsie mayor John Tkazyik wrote an op-ed in which he claims Michael Bloomberg’s gun control organization MAIG (Mayors Against Illegal Guns) “intended to promote confiscation of guns from law-abiding citizens.”

        Following a Senate Budget Committee hearing, a hot-mic caught several New Jersey state senators disparaging gun owners.

        “All they want to do is have their little guns and do whatever they want with them,” one Senator said. “They don’t care about the bad guys.”

        Another stated that the Senate “needed a bill that was going to confiscate, confiscate, confiscate.”

        Steve McLaughlin introduced a wish list for Senate Democrats that included plans to confiscate so-called “assault weapons,” confiscate ten-round clips, and set up a database for every gun in the state.

        Former Vice President Joseph R. Biden, the front-runner in the Democratic race, said he would create a gun buyback program and remove military-style rifles from people’s possession once the weapons are banned.

        “They should be illegal, period,” Mr. Biden said on CNN. “Look, the Second Amendment doesn’t say you can’t restrict the kinds of weapons people can own. You can’t buy a bazooka. You can’t have a flame thrower.”

        Sen. Kamala D. Harris said she was open to a mandatory gun buyback program. She also suggested that she was fine with police knocking on doors and taking away weapons. When she was California attorney general, she said, authorities took guns from felons and people deemed dangerous to themselves or others.
        Kamala Harris has previously stated that if she were elected president, she would use executive action to enact control, including banning entire classes of weapons she and liberals think look scary.

        Former Rep. Beto O’Rourke of Texas said he was willing to impose an Australian-style mandatory gun buyback and national gun licensing programs.

        Early in the Democratic race, Rep. Eric Swalwell of California presented himself as a leading gun control voice and was the first candidate to propose a mandatory buyback program.

        The federal government must ban assault weapons and implement a buyback program to get assault weapons off the streets. – Sander Tweet.

        BTW gun buyback programs have been extensively studied – they probably make things worse. They are alot like “cash for Klunkers” – and that worked so well.
        Generally damaged, defective old guns get turned in and bought back and far to often the money is used to buy new better guns.

        Honestly Rick I do not know why any debate on this issue remains.

        There are zero actual facts in favor of gun control – even the UK with its draconian gun laws has LESS gun deaths before its gun laws – that was a long time ago.

      • August 17, 2019 1:03 pm


        If I am looking at the statistics correctly for Australia, from 1971 to 1994, a 24 year period, Australia had 20 mass murders for a total of 120 people.

        From 1995 to 2019, a comparative 24 year period, Australia has had 26 mass muders and a total of 128 dead

        !971-1995 averaged 5 dead per murder
        1996- 2019 averaged 6 dead per murder
        No significant change in the numbers per murder.
        (Source wiki)

        They find other means!

      • dhlii permalink
        August 17, 2019 3:27 pm


        I have thrown out lots of statistics – and particularly statistics about Austrailia – BECAUSE we had a nearly controlled experiment with Austrailia. For 2 decades AU switched to draconian gun laws while NZ with identical demographics did not.

        It is extremely rare that we have direct comparisons that require so few adjustments.

        At the same time we must be careful with statistics. We must make sure the statistics we are looking at actually measure what we want to look at.

        As an example AU’s gun laws DID reduce – even eliminate “mass shootings”.
        It did not however have a statistically significant effect on mass killings.

        What is your goal ? To stop killing people with guns ? or to stop killing people ?

        Scottland which is very white, has draconian gun laws, and almost zero gun violence.
        But the homocide and violent crime rates are slightly higher than caucasions in the US.
        The scotts kill people with knives.

        What do you want to stop – killing, or killing with guns ?

        AU did have a brief significant decline in suicides. It also had a sustained decline in gun suicides. But over the long run the suicide rate reverted to the trend – people just found other ways to kill themselves.

        I am making arguments about guns here.

        BUT my core argument is NOT about guns. I really do not care alot about guns.

        I do care about the steady errosion of our rates through feel good laws that DO NOT WORK.

        In another post I addressed childrens car seats – same problem. We do not care whether the law actually does any good. We know – atleast some of us that we have a costly law with no benefit but we are not going to do anything about it. Because that is the way government works. We make laws that do not (and can not work) in order to “feel good”, and then we ignore it when they fail.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 17, 2019 5:39 am

        Fact: – in all mass shootings since 1982 there were 141 handguns, 53 rifles, and 30 shotguns used. BTW all the rifles were NOT semi-automatic. I have not been able to separate out the semi-automatic rifles yet, But I know there were ZERO semi-automatic rifles at columbine.
        There were handguns a shotgun and an italian carbine.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 17, 2019 6:05 am

        The most deadly US mass shooting remains Las Vegas – 58 dead.
        In Nice the same year 86 people were killed by a truck.
        Since 1982 there have been 434K gun homocides.
        Mass shooting make 0.2% of that total. Mass shootings over more than 40 years total about 1/4 the number who were killed at 9/11. Assault weapon deaths by mass shooting are 0.06% of the total.

        Your odds of being killed in a mass shooting are just under 1:400K

        The NRA estimates that there are about 5M AR-15’s in the US – that is a bit more than 1% of all guns. Politifact puts it at 6-10M.
        The odds of being killed by an assault rifle in a mass shooting are less than 1:1,000,000

        Since you like “facts”

        Twice as many mass shootings have taken place in Blue states than red states.
        Though “swing” states edge out blue states by a little.

        8 States and DC still have State assault rifle bans that are stronger than the Clinton era AWB. All of these are still in place. 31% of all states have not had a mass shooting.
        Only 1 state with an AWB has not had a mass shooting.

        Only 14% of states have had a mass shooting involving an “assault rifle”.

        Clinton purportedly ran an oped recently praising his AWB.

        Depending on how you slice the data you can in SOME permutations claim that there was a decline in mass shooting during the AWB – the deviation is very small.

        However the frequency of assault weapon use was unchanged.

        Further since the AWB expired almost 50% of the Assault weapon fatalities in mass shootings have been police – there have been several mass shootings specifically targetting police and these have used assault rifles.

        The narrative that “assault rifles” have been used in nearly all mass shooting is FALSE.
        The semi-automatic weapons claim is spurious – nearly all guns are “semi-automatic” but only a tiny portion of semi-automatic weapons are rifles. In fact I beleive 100% of all handguns are “semi-automatic”.

      • August 17, 2019 1:28 pm

        If there are 5 million people that own 5-10 million AR15’s, are they the ones that would trust government, or are they the ones more like the red neck bubba’s, four wheel raised oversized tire truck owners, western ranch owners and other rural conservative gun owners? Would they line up at the doors of the BAF waiting to hand over their AR15’s.

        My brother -in-law is in that rural gun owner category. Has 3 AR’15s. Has them stored in different places. He would be like Charlton Heston. You would have to pry them from his dead damn hands before turning them in. And if a democrat wins, I bet he will be buying more.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 17, 2019 4:20 pm

        If merely 1% of AR-15 owners resist violently having their guns taken away there are only two possible outcomes.

        Government turning a blind eye to AR-15 ownership and not enforcing the law.
        Gun violence far greater than all mass shootings.

        The police will enforce the law – against very small numbers of AR-15 owners. They will likely tolerate it if police deaths in the line of duty double – to 250/year. But more than that – and they are just plain NOT going to enforce the law. Police are NOT going to send SWAT teams to the homes of known AR-15 owners where there is a 1% chance of a shootout resulting in POLICE casualties, if there is no other reason to target that person than because they have an AR-15.

        Which is another issue we should not EVER make laws that law enforcement is not going to enforce, or that it is going to excercise very large discretion in enforcing.

        WE do not want a situation where large numbers of americans are “criminals”, but we are not going to try to prosecute them. That actually increases crime. When you label an otherwise law abiding citizen a fellon, you decrease the constraints stopping them from committing other crimes.

      • August 17, 2019 1:33 am

        Dave you left out that DC already came for their guns and a conservative court ruled against them. Had it been a liberal democrat court, no one in DC would be owning a hand gun (legally) and all others would be worthless because they would have to be unloaded and locked up. Hand Heller V DC been upheld, don’t you think DC would have banned assulat rifles along with many other states?

      • dhlii permalink
        August 17, 2019 5:20 am

        Here is a graph of the murder rate in DC with the implimentation of DC’s draconian gun laws marked as well as their being struck down.

        It took some time after the laws were implimented for the murder rate to spike, and the murder rate was already declining when the law was struck down.

        I can try to argue that the law made DC more violent – it would be a weak argument.

        But there is absolutely no way that you can argue that gun laws made DC safer – it clearly did not.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 16, 2019 11:21 pm

        “If they didn’t have those guns to begin with, there would be no need for them to use those guns to defend themselves.”

        If you were not trying to take their guns – there would be no need for them to use those guns to defend themselves.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 16, 2019 11:30 pm

        This is not a conservative issue. I am not a conservative.

        Aside from proving that what you wish to do will be NET better – something you can not do.
        You must do one other thing that you can not succeed at.

        Amend the constitution. We do not wish the constitution and its amendments away because they interfere with passing the laws that some of us want at the moment.

        The constitution is much weaker than it needs to be in protecting our rights,
        but at the very least we should not make it weaker by ignoring it when it is inconvenient.

        If you wish to infringe on the right to own guns – then you must amend the constitution.
        And BTW in doing so you must revise TWO amendments – the 2nd and the 14th.

        No matter how hard you try to pretend the 2nd does not say what it plainly says – the legislative history of the 14th amendment is absolutely clear. The intention of the 14th amendment was to assure that newly freed negroes would have the right to own guns.
        It was beyond the ability of northern occupation forces to protect negroes – and the post civil war history makes that abundantly clear, The reconstruction congress passed the 14th amendment to permanetly secure the right of individuals, regardless of race to own guns for the purpose of protecting themselves against the majority.

        If you think that the founders and the ratifiers of the 14th amendment were wrong, or that the need has passed – while I disagree, you can resolve the matter by amending the constitution.

        That is hard. It is supposed to be hard. It should be completely impossible to infringe on a right.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 16, 2019 11:34 pm

        So let me summarize your argument:

        We should do something that there is no evidence will work – to make us feel better.
        We should do it despite the fact that we are infinging on the natural right to self defense, the constitutional right in the 2nd and 14th amendment.

        We should not amend the constitution – because that is too hard. and you have no problem with ignoring impediments to infringing on rights. So long as those are rights that are not important to you personally.

        Rick -I understand the emotional appeal of passing a law in the hope of fixing some scary problem. It is precisely BECAUSE that appeal is so strong that we MUST have strong impediments.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 16, 2019 11:45 pm

        Why do you not need to repeal the 2nd amendment to do what you wish to do, but you would be stopped by the 2nd amendment if you tried to go farther ?

        Any argument you make, can be made for further infringment.

        If we do not need 15 round magazines for rifles – we have even less need for them in hand guns.

        If you are going to ban “semi-automatic” weapons that is pretty much everything but bolt action rifles and maybe pump shotguns. It is absolutely every gun that holds more than 1 bullet and can fire more than once by pulling the trigger another time.

        Any argument that an AR-15 is not covered by the 2nd amendment – makes almost all firearms unprotected by the 2nd amendment.

        If you try to pretend that the militia clause is limiting clause rather than a justification – then there is no individual right to own any weapon.

        And all of this requires completely ignoring the 14th amendment.

        You are essentially saying that white southerners we free to confiscate weapons from Blacks in the south – knowing they would end up getting killed.

        If you are saying we are past that now – that similar situations will never arrise – then change the 2nd and 14th amendment.

        But if you claim that you can do what you want without infringing. but that the 2nd amendment will ultimately prevent government from going further – that is crap.

        Either it is sufficient to stop you here and now, or it is never sufficient to stop anyone whose heart is ahead of their brain from acting stupid but with purportedly good intentions.

        I say purportedly – because I do not accept good intentions EVER as a justification for bad acts. If you act badly – that is the end of it.

  7. Savannah Jordan permalink
    August 14, 2019 3:35 pm

    I am almost finished reading Chernow’s “Grant”, the biography of Ulysses S. Grant. The war was of course the most violent era in American History but the period after the war was probably the second most violent era. Our current polarized society pales in comparison to the Reconstruction Era. It truly is amazing that our democracy survived. Although that society had even more anger and polarization than our current society, there were not instances of one gunmen killing 20, 40, 60, 100 people almost simultaneously. The difference is that we have allowed people to own weapons of mass destruction. I do not see why we cannot ban the sale of these guns and buy back those already in circulation. 70% of voters want a ban on assault weapons but the Congress is controlled by powerful minority who care nothing for the security and safety of our society. You don’t need an assault weapon to take down an intruder, in fact, an assailant using an assault weapons negates the ability of a victim to defend themselves. Even if the victim has an assault weapon by the time they realize what is happening the assailant has already fired 20 shorts or more. As I said this small powerful minority care nothing for the safety and security of this country. They are driven by the euphoria of power which they experience when they feel these weapons of mass destruction pulsating in their hands. We are watching our children slaughtered in their schools so that these people can experience their orgiastic high.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 14, 2019 6:24 pm

      I have not read Chernow’s grant.

      But you are wrong about the differences between society today and then.

      In the debate leading to the 14th amendment it was ABSOLUTELY clear that the priviledges and immunites clause was explicitly intended to guarantee the right of BLACKS to own GUNS. That was probably the most important factor in tipping the scales when Heller was decided.

      Further the history of the period you are referencing is tied strongly to GUNS.

      Immediately post civil war and for almost 10 years, the south was occupied by norther armies, and black ownership of guns was HIGH, those two factors resulted in the governments of many southern states being overwhelmingly black, with numerous federal representatives and senators being southern blacks.
      This came to an end when Grant pulled troops from the south with a part of that deal being the confiscation of the guns of blacks, and that was followed by the first great period of southern violence and lynchings.

      I would further note that even during the civil war – available personal weapons were more capable than the military weapons of the government. That persisted even into the indian wars were custers defeat was as attributable to inferior weapons as most anything else.

      Easy to load multiple shot revolvers were PERSONAL weapons in the Civil War,
      Repeating rifles were PERSONAL weapons in the Civil war.

      Even in the 20th century – serious guns and rifles were a fixture within the civil rights movement.

      BTW actual assault weapons are already banned. No automatic weapon has been used outside of the military in a crime since tommy guns during prohibition.

      As to need: There are numerous instances every year – many times the number of mass shootings, were someone with an AR-15 or similar weapon successfully defends their home against multiple criminals – so yes there are real world scenarios were such weapons are necescary. Obama commissioned the CDC to study the issue, and even the CDC found that the DOCUMENTED evidence demonstrated that guns were USED MANY more times in the US to prevent or limit crimes than gun deaths, and that the deterent effect was likely an order of magnitude greater.

      Further we have evidence from Austrailia of exactly how the program that you propose would work. The answer is that it did not.

      Mass Shootings dropped to zero. Mass killings remained constant, Arson’s spiked, briefly suicides by gun declined but there was overall no statistically significant effect of Austrialias heinous gun laws.

      The UK actually had less gun violence BEFORE implimenting its modern gun laws.
      London has banned knives – because if people want to kill people – they will find a weapon.
      The rate of murder and violent death in scottland is a bit more than 1/2 that of the US – sounds promising – but Scotts who can not own guns murder more of their fellow scotts than any other caucasion group in the world. In the US about 50% of all gun deaths involve black shooters – in fact the rates of violence throughout the world vary very very little – by race.
      All differences in rates of violence between countries can be entirely derived by the ethnic makeup of the population – not the laws – that is WORLD WIDE.

      But lets go farther.

      More people are killed each year by lighting in the US than in mass shootings.
      More people are killed each month in Chicago than in a year by mass shootings.

      4 times more people die of drug overdoses than all gun deaths – including suicides.
      3 times as many from accidental falls, and 3 times as many from automobile accidents.

      in 2016 374 people were killed by long guns in all forms – that is shotguns, and rifles as well as AR-15’s. I beleive about 15% of long gun deaths are attributable to “assault weapons”,
      And long guns make up less than 10% of all gun deaths. There were 3700 murders using knives at the same time. according to the FBI.

      A “good guy with a gun” stops a potential mass shooting – it happens about 10 times a year, thought it pretty much never makes national news.
      But it is rarer than it would be otherwise – because mass shootings occur almost exclusively in “gun free” zones – which is precisely why mass shooters target those areas.
      Further concealed carry is severely restricted in most of the country.

      But inside of homes guns are used many times every day to stop crimes as noted above in the CDC’s work.

      Post Christchurch NZ – finally capitulated and imposed draconian gun control and buy back.
      Problem ? New Zealanders are NOT cooperating. Despite the fact that it is a crime, they are not turning in their guns.

      In the US there are about 350M guns. Do you understand what the cost to buy those back would be ?

      Do you understand how much violence will occur if you try to ?

      Lets say 1% of all gun owners decide to keep their guns – even though doing so makes them criminals – in NZ right now that is running close to 50% not 1%.

      So now you have to send in law enforcement to confiscate their weapons.
      That is 3.5M raids by swat teams. If 1% of those raids turn violent, that is 35K violent raids.

      Is that an improvement over 1 or 2 mass shootings a year ?

      Do your really want 35K gun battles between otherwise law abiding citizens and police swat teams using automatic weapons ?

      When ever you propose a law – ANY LAW, you should always factor in the cost – in $ and blood of enforcing that law. NYC’s laws barring the sale of loose cigarettes ended with Eric Garner losing his life. If you pass a law – some small portion of otherwise law abiding citizens will decide – they are not going to obey – and they are going to do so right up to the point where law enforcement must use deadly force.

      If you want to ensure that the current conflict between the left and the right becomes violent and involves weapons – pass restrictive gun control laws.

      Are you not old enough to remember Ruby Ridge or Wacco ?

      The entire justification that McVeigh used for the OKC bombing was driven by government efforts to crush militias and confiscate guns.

      Even the mass murders that you are attempting to thwart will now have a bigger and better cause.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 14, 2019 6:34 pm

      I am not an expert in “gun culture” – but it is pretty clear that you are not either.

      Criminals pretty much never have weapons like AR-15’s. These are not useful weapons for burglaries, or most crimes.
      Even Mass Shooters do not typically use “assault weapons” – the majority of deaths in mass shootings are from handguns.

      Different weapons are more useful for different circumstances.

      Burglars as an example – are NOT typically armed – atleast not with guns.
      ANY gun is a deterent to most burglars, there is plenty of data that burglars avoid:
      Homes with dogs,
      Homes where there is a probability that residents are armed.

      But handguns are ineffective in dealing with multiple attackers.
      Handguns are close range weapons, not area defense or denial weapons.

      As to “small powerful minorities” – 42% of americans have one of more gun in their home.

      That is a powerful minority – it is NOT a small one.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 14, 2019 6:38 pm

      “They are driven by the euphoria of power which they experience when they feel these weapons of mass destruction pulsating in their hands. ”

      Really – so you are expert on the motivations and feelings of other people ?

      When you make an argument presuming to know what others think and feel – you are with near certainty WRONG.

      Even the christian god judges us on our ACTIONS not our thoughts.

      Christ did not ask – when I was hungry did you think about feeding me, or did you feel bad about my hunger.

      When you presume to know more about other people that there are facts to support – you have lost your argument.

      Worse still you are dangerous.

      It is possible to justify anything if you get to presume that your assessment of the motivations and feelings of others are correct.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 14, 2019 6:44 pm

      “We are watching our children slaughtered in their schools so that these people can experience their orgiastic high.”

      The leading cause of death for children under 12 is automobile accidents.

      If you put your kind in the car or on a bus – they are about 1000 times more likely to be killed than by a mass shooter at school – pursuing some “orgiastic high”.

      More children die each year in hot cars than mass shootings.

      About 100 times more kids are killed each year – by things under their kitchen sink than by mass shooters.

      If you are worried about kids – worry about actual threats, not unicorns.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 14, 2019 6:45 pm

      BTW – welcome.

      Despite the criticism, new voices are welcom.

    • August 14, 2019 8:41 pm

      Savannah, it is not the issue of banning certain types of weapons. If you look at the history of the NRA you will find they supported almost every gun control legislation until 1971. That is when the FBI raided Ken Bellews appt and shot him based on very weak information. He was an NRA member and was reported to have stockpiled weapons which were not found. That changed Charlton Hestons position on the government and since that time they yave opposed every law proposed.

      It is trust in government. You trust government to stop with the assault weapons ban. I think an assault weapon is useless for the average American, but I have little trust in government. I believe once they ban assualt weapons, then any pistols used in murders will be banned. Unlike government in the past (ie 1930’s ban on machine guns and nothing further), today the ban on one weapon is the key to unlocking bans on multiple weapons.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 14, 2019 10:05 pm

        The 2nd amendment serves many purposes.

        Our founders intended that it guarantee the right of settlers to hunt for food,
        The authors of the 14th amendment explicitly intended that negros in the south would be able to have guns to defend against southern whites.
        The right to self defense is nearly universally recognized – and like the right to free speech you can not restrict a right by infringing on the necescities of that right.

        Put simply if the 2nd amendment merely said that we all have the right to self defense, the government would STILL be barred from banning guns.

        There are other purposes to the 2nd amendment – but one other that is true is it is there to ensure the right of the people to stand up to government. To revolt if necescary, but even short of revolt just to remind the government that their power is not unlimited that at some point citizens will take up arms. Our declaration of independence makes it clear that it is absolutely justified to take up arms against an oppresive government.

        The US government does not meet that threshold today. Hopefully it never will.
        But americans are entitled to own weapons specifically to prepare for that possibility.

        To those who keep playing this nonsensical game that our founders did not mean weapons of war – military weapons.

        The Pennsylvania long rifle, was the high tech M16 of its day – actually it was MORE state of the art for the time. While it served many purposes. it proved to be the near perfect weapon for american irregulars early in the war. While it took 3 times as long to load and fire, it also had 3 times the range. In myriads of engagements throughout new england, colonists unleashed vollies against the english from outside the range of british weapons and then separated to reload and prepare for the next strike.
        Throughout the war it was impossible for the british to move troops in much of the country because the could not survive clashes with colonists in the woods where revolutionary forces could strike and retreat repeatedly without ever getting in the range of the british.

        In fact the Pennsylvania rifle remained in use in the US until near the end of the 19th century.

        Put simply ordinary americans at the time of the revolution owned weapons supperior to the british military.

        Further during the revolution – all kinds of other weapons – like warships and artilery were owned by ordinary people.
        Even today – you can not own an M16 – but you can own a cannon.

  8. August 14, 2019 8:52 pm

    True moral conservatives (there are few remaining) will fight to replace Trump with a suitable human candidate.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 14, 2019 10:15 pm

      And we continue the long long line of posts that argue:

      Trump is unfit – because I do not like him.

      Is there any argument here beyond – Walsh must be right because he is saying things I agree with ?

      I would be happy to have a real discussion – facts, logic, reason, regarding Trump’s fitness to be president.

      There are plenty of legitimate fact based arguments that can be made, and some I might agree with. Though I will point out that the same can be said of every president in my lifetime – even if the reasons might differ.

      Ultimately outside the provisions of the constitution and the actual 25th amendment fitness to be president is determined by voters on election day, and like it or not Trump won that argument. You get to try again in 2020.

      I have no problem with someone challenging Trump – whether from the right or left.

      I am absolutely certain I can pick 100 people that I would prefer as president to Trump.
      Unfortunately not a single one is a plausible contender for either party.

      George Will has repeatedly criticised Trump – and except that Trump remains the lessor evil of the choices we have had – I would otherwise mostly agree with Will.

      But again there is not a single president elected during my lifetime – that I could not pick someone I think would be better.

  9. dhlii permalink
    August 15, 2019 2:34 pm

    “Go into the London Stock Exchange – a more respectable place than many a court – and you will see representatives from all nations gathered together for the utility of men. Here Jew, Mohammedan and Christian deal with each other as though they were all of the same faith, and only apply the word infidel to people who go bankrupt. Here the Presbyterian trusts the Anabaptist and the Anglican accepts a promise from the Quaker. On leaving these peaceful and free assemblies some go to the Synagogue and others for a drink, this one goes to be baptized in a great bath in the name of Father, Son and Holy Ghost, that one has his son’s foreskin cut and has some Hebrew words he doesn’t understand mumbled over the child, others go to heir church and await the inspiration of God with their hats on, and everybody is happy.”

    We bemoan the conflict and division of modern public discourse. But entirely miss that conflict is ultimately about only one thing – attempts to accomplish by force what we could not accomplish by persuasion.

    In everything that we are prohibited from using force – we get along extremely well.

    I can walk down the streets of Berkeley or Montgomery Alabama, and engage with most anyone, and so long as I those interactions have nothing to do with what government should compel, conflicts will be few and cordial.

    • August 15, 2019 8:32 pm

      Dave, how true your comment “We bemoan the conflict and division of modern public discourse. But entirely miss that conflict is ultimately about only one thing – attempts to accomplish by force what we could not accomplish by persuasion.”

      Since most have left this site for places unknown to me, I have been searching for a site where one can comment and not be torn apart by those that have differing views. Once again, after years of not visiting that other “moderate” site that calls itself moderate, I visited their site today and began reading their post and the comments that followed. Lord have mercy, if they posted anything that was not anti-Trump, hell would freeze over. And occasionally there will be someone comment about a subject that does not fit their political thinking and the poor person it riddled with personal attacks by those commenting instead of a debate between the two taking place.

      Basically there, as well as other sites, force those commenting to adhere to their agenda, or they are forced out. Unlike here where the many that leave do so on their own accord because they can not force those that stay to their way of thinking.

      • Priscilla permalink
        August 15, 2019 9:43 pm

        I seem to recall that it was during the Bush 43 administration, that people started talking about “Bush Derangement Syndrome.” And that seemed
        like a good term for people who were calling Bush and Cheney “war criminals and the like.

        But it was nothing like Trump Derangement Syndrome, which I have begun to believe is an actual mental disorder, brought on by intense hatred, mob mentality and mass hysteria.

        I’m not claiming that everyone who opposes Trump suffers from TDS, but millions of them do. I’ve seen people who I know to have been reasonable, often thoughtful, liberals, turn into raving, angry Trump haters, who talk about what a filthy, disgusting human he is, how unfit he is to be president, and how ashamed anyone should be to support him. And, if you can get a word in edgewise, and have the nerve to ask what exactly makes them hate the man so much, they can usually only talk about the fact that he is a racist, that he separates children from their families, and that he doesn’t respect women. If you bring up people like Kellyanne Conway or Nikki Haley, even Sarah Sanders, they scoff at you, as if those women don’t count.

        It’s scary to see this kind of hate, from otherwise normal people, directed at the duly elected president. I mean, I don’t expect all people to like him ~ I didn’t like Obama at all…could barely stand to listen to him, by the end of his term. But it didn’t define me, or affect my life in any negative way. I just think that TDS is different from anything I’ve seen in my lifetime.

        Am I wrong about this?

      • August 15, 2019 10:40 pm

        Priscilla, no you are not wrong. You know I am not fond of Trump, not because of anything the left says, but because of what he says. As Dave comments, he may be doing this out of character, acting, and manipulating his opponents much like Mohammad Ali did with George Foreman and “rope-a-dope”.

        But with those s on the left, you can nit debate anything Trump does. They go ballistic if you question their anti-Trump positions.

        I support his trade positions. Not because tariffs are good, but changing the Chinese trade policies from a position of strength.
        I support his new immigration policies. No benefits before citizenship. The left can moan about how hard hearted that is and what the statue of liberty stands for, but when that was constructed and immigrants came throughbEllis Island, there were no government handout to be had like today.
        I support.his healthcare positions, his choices for SCOTUS and his deregulation.

        But damn, it seems like every day he says something that is a total turnoff and I think,” did he really say that” and sure enough he did.

        But like dave also said, once in the voting booth, I may gag and vote for him to be one vote agaist the democrat. Even if NC is not really.key to a presidential election.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 16, 2019 2:51 am

        I do not agree with you or Trump on ANY of the positions you support Trump on.

        But I have no doubt that you and I can have a civilized debate over those issues.

        I am going to relentlessly argue my position with “facts, logic, reason” – millions of mind numbing pages of it. It is highly unlikely I will persuade you. There might be a few times that I call some idea stupid or moronic, but I am not going to insult you as the means to win the argument. You may call some of my arguments stupid. You are not likely to be persuaded,
        But you are not going to insult me as a means to win the argument.

        Our disagreement is not going to preclude my buying you a Cheese Steak if I ever get to NC.

        When you call people racists, haters, liars, cheaters, it is near impossible to come back.
        Once you do that further debate is nearly impossible.

        We have seen that with Bush, with McCain, with Palin, with Romney and with Trump.
        And we have seen that here.

        When you resort to slurs, you create TWO walls between you.
        The first is to return to reason your opponent must forgive you.
        The second is that you must get past your own shame at making a false accusation.

        The latter is harder than the former.

        Once you call someone a racist – or similar Slurs, there is no coming back.
        They will never forgive you.
        And the likelyhood of your ever admiting even to yourself to having falsely accused someone of being a racist is about zero.

        Once you call someone a racist – in your mind, they must be a racist forever.
        Being wrong, is being immoral yourself.

        This is what is dividing our country.

      • August 16, 2019 2:29 pm

        OK, so lets start with this You say “I do not agree with you or Trump on ANY of the positions you support Trump on.”. So in a few words if possible please explain as will I. Nothing long, just pertinent thoughts on what drives my positions.

        1. I understand your trade positions and you believe that open trade at any cost is good trade. And I support that up to a point. If a country in Africa can produce jeans with the same quality as American produced jeans and they sell in America for the same price as the American produced jeans or less, that is fine. We are helping build up a poor economy. But I will never accept a car company being owned 50%+ by the Chinese , producing that car, sending it here without a tariff while our cars are taxed 25% going to China. China is not a developing economy, it is the #2 ranked economy and #1 by purchasing power. And Buick is not selling that car any cheaper than a competitor model made in America, so the buyer is not getting any break.
        2. Immigration and not giving benefits to immigrants. I support immigrants coming to this country legally, but I do not support them living off the government once they get here. Find a job, work and build up your life, don’t sponge off those that do.
        3. Eliminating the ACA is going to be near impossible, so doing the next best thing, eliminating much of the force within the legislation works for me. I would rather have that than beating my head against the wall, complaining about all the things like the penalty included and not doing away with those parts the can be eliminated.
        4. I think Trump has made some good appointments to SCOTUS. I would like to see some more like Kennedy and O’Conner, but the last two have not been as bad as Sotomayor and Kagan.

        Your turn, and Priscilla please jump in if you have comments!

      • dhlii permalink
        August 16, 2019 4:21 pm

        “I do not agree with you or Trump on ANY of the positions you support Trump on.”
        Sorry, that is a misstatement. I beleive I meant “MANY”.

        Regardless, the point was we do not agree, but we are capable of civil debate.
        One of the reasons for that is that we stick close to facts and arguments, and not slurs and invective.

        I second point was that I am far from a “trump supporter”.
        But there is not some manditory binary – you each support Trump on EVERYTHING, or on NOTHING.

        Apparently Trump was inquiring about the possibility of buying Greenland from Denmark.
        And the left has gone balistic.

        Why ? Denmark appears uninterested – that’s fine. But the idea is not evil, racist, stupid, ….
        It is just one that does not interest the danes.

        If it became serious. I might ponder whether I think it is a good idea or a bad idea.
        But it is not an evil idea or an immoral idea, or a racist idea.

        I have no problem with addressing our differences on trade and immigration and …
        But I think we have hashed them to death.

        I do not think there is a place for government in free exchange beyond enforcing agreements and baring the actual use of force.
        Buying something from your neighbor, from the neighboring city, from the neighboring state, from the neighboring country from the neighboring planet – if it ever comes to that, changes nothing.

        The historical evidence is the deeper government in free exchange distorts markets, and decreases efficiency – and that means we are less prosperous than we would be otherwise.

        And it does not matter at all WHY government is interfering.

        With respect to your arguments such as those about quality.

        Absolutely – as the buy you get to decide whether you will pay the asked price for the quality of product offered – whether it is from Ohio, Africa, or China.

        I have absolutely ZERO problem with your preferences – EXCEPT that you wish to force them to be my preferences too.

        If I find the price/quality of African Jeans acceptable – I should be free to buy them.
        If you do not- you are free not to buy them.
        There is no role for government.

        If you want to help build a poor country – you are free to adjust your purchasing choices.
        If you do not want to help China – again you are free to not do so.

        But you are NOT free to decide for me.

        I have zero problems with “buy local” or “buy american” campaigns.
        There is absolutely nothing wrong with engaging in persuasion.
        Even if I think what you are seeking to persuade me regarding is a bad idea.

        There is no right to control any more of the market than your OWN choices.
        There is no right to buy at the price you want, or to be able to sell – not in the US or china.

        It is wrong for China to tarrif incoming products – and they should not do that.
        But the real harm is to their own people. There is no right for US sellors to sell to chinese customers.

        BTW this is actually much the same as immigration.

        I am still trying to work somethings out.
        But most of the immigration debate does NOT involve rights.

        There is no right to come to the US.
        I think immigration is so obviously a net good, that we should do whatever it takes to impliment open borders – but that requires eliminating our entitlement system.

        But so long as there is no right involved, the argument is utilitarian not principled.

        Apparently there is a big war at the moment because Kuccinelli quoted the plaque in front of the Statute of liberty – that Plaque includes a paraphrase of the Emma Lazarus poem that includes “public charge”. Kuccinelli was berated for misquoting “the new collusus” – but he wasn’t quoting that.

        Regardless, I fully agree with the “public charge” construction – though for the most part I would impliment it inversely.

        I do not care who comes – but you will not receive government aide.

        I have told you before – I think we could solve the immigration debate trivially by getting government mostly out of the decision making.

        Just say that ANYONE can come to the US if they have a sponsor. But make sponsorship meaningful. If you sponsor someone YOU are responsible for them. You are essentially committing to be their “safetynet”.

        If YOU wish to sponsor chinese, or guatamalan’s or hatians or nigerians, or muslims – that is up to you. The government need not “vet” people, need not set quota’s,

        You get in if you have a sponsor, and you don’t if you can not get one.

        I would let anyone, any organzation, any business, any church sponsor people.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 16, 2019 4:34 pm

        The ACA is in almost all ways nearly gone already. What is “impossible” is turning reality into an expressed decision.

        What is harder and necescary is getting government out of healthcare.

        There is a chart floating arround showing long terms price trends of various things.

        The ONLY things that have a long term inflation adjusted trend of price increases are those things heavily controlled by government – healthcare, education.

        Everything else has become cheaper and better.

        If you want Healthcare even more F’d up – keep trying to have govenrment fix it.

        I am still on the fence over Kavanaugh – and Gorsuch occasionally F’s up.
        But despite that Gorsuch is on track to becoming the most significant justice of the 21st century.

        Kennedy is a disasterously bad justice. OConner was better and better still after leaving the court. But both had the same problem – they sought to compromise over issues of principle.

        That NEVER works out well, It just leaves us fighting forever.

        It is often better to gets something dead wrong, then to fudge in the middle.

        I think Kennedy was a good person but a lousy justice.
        But I have more problmes with Roberts.
        Roberts seems to think the fundimental role of a supreme court justice is to prevent the court from being controlversial.

        That is absolutely 180 degrees wrong.

        The most important work of the court is saying NO when all of government and most people think the answer is yes. SCOTUS is there to protect our individual rights. Everything else it does is small potatos. And protection of individual rights matters most when those rights are not popular.

        The Skokie decision is in my view one of the greatest decisions of the court.
        They said no to government when nearly everyone wanted them to say yes, to protect the rights of people who few of us think deserve rights.

        That is the highest purpose of the courts.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 16, 2019 4:38 pm

        With few exceptions I find it harder to trash specific justices.

        Many of Sotomayor’s or Kagan’s decisions are absolute garbage.

        But SCOTUS sometimes gets things right through unlikely coalitions.

        Sotomayor and Kagan and others on the left have on rare occsion been on the right side of 5-4 decisions

        I have more problems with Roberts particularly as he keeps being the 5th vote on a bad decisions and then writes an oppinion that essentially says “I am actually wrong and I know it, but we are going to decide this specific case this way because doing otherwise would make the court look too political”.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 16, 2019 2:36 am

        Our bitter divisions are NOT about Trump.

        They are unequivocally about politics, ideology.

        They are about the use of force to accomplish what we were not able to accomplish through persuasion.

        If Ted Cruz had been elected – or Mario Rubio – we would still be at war.
        The tactics might be different, but the issues would be the same.

        Many of us have observed that if Democrats wish to beat Trump – they need a moderate, not Warren, Harris, Sanders – or pretty much any of the 20 dwarves.

        But democrats are not going to run a “moderate”.

        All the PC nonsense is tactics, it is not the objective.

        The objective is to use government to force all of us to live as they wish, without having to do the work of persuading us that their preferences for us are our best choice.

        The violently “anti-trump” forces are not even really anti-trump.
        They are anti not getting their way – by force if necescary.

        If Trump could manage as Ron says and many of us would wish, to act presidential, to quit saying things that provoke the left – that would change nothing.

        Trump – or any other republican – any other person who was president who did not give them what they wanted, would be decried as a racist, hateful hating hater.

        That has been the tactic for decades, certainly it was the tactic against Bush, and McCain – Sarah Palin’s treatment was immoral. and Romney.
        I do not think any of those republicans were or would have made good presidents.
        But they were not racist hateful hating haters.

        The slurs and insults are to avoid having to debate the issues.
        We have seen EXACTLY the same thing HERE.

        Do not debate the issues – attack the person.

        In a real debate over the issues – the PERSONS on either side of the argument DO NOT MATTER, What matters is the facts and the arguments.

        I agree with Trump on somethings and not on others.
        I agree with Trump on more than Obama – but Obama was not wrong on everything.

        Regardless, while there were exceptions – the debate during the obama presidency was primarily about ISSUES, not personality.

        The objective and the core of the bitterness and divisiveness, is that way too many of us are trying to get our way on issues – to force others to live as we wish, and the tools we are using are NOT, facts, or arguments, but slurs and insults.

        Is it any wonder we are deeply divided ?

        If we substitute some “president X” for Trump and pretend that this President X is the same as Trump in policies, but somehow manages to be presidential, and respectful, that President X does not have a racist, hateful bone in their body – but still makes the same policy choices as Trump – the media and the left would be doing EXACTLY the same things they are doing now.

        The real conflict is NOT over Trump or his demeanor, or racism, or intolerance.
        It is over the inability of the left to continue to impose its polices on the rest of us by force.

        There is not a snowballs chance in hell of a moderate democrat being the Democrats candidate – because the very people who are most bitterly attacking Trump – do not want a moderate.

        What is wrong, what is dividing us, is the effort to win a debate on policies, by slur rather than facts, argument or actual persuasion.

        Ron fears – and what the left and the media beleive, is that they have so poisoned the well with Trump, that few will vote for him. They believe they have made Trump LOOK so bad that they are going to win no matter what. They are therefore intent on nominating the most left wing candidate they can.

        The left is doubling down on the failed strategy of 2016.

        Ron is deathly afraid that is going to work.

        History shows that it will backfire BADLY.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 16, 2019 1:58 am

        Thank you.

        I would stress again. The divisions in this country right now are pretty much entirely about politics. Pretty much completely about accomplishing by force what can not be accomplished by persuasion.

        Everyday americans work together, shop together, buy things from each others, go to the grocery store together, church together, ball games together – without the vitriole.

        We come together at holidays – and do not disown each other over football, or whose mash potatoes are better. Sometimes we clash over things – but rarely with the bitterness of politics, where fathers and sons, brothers and sisters can refuse to sit down and eat together.

        The country is not divided. We do not agree over absolutely everything. But we do not need to agree. We can tolerate our differences and move one. Except in the domain of politics.

        What distinguishes politics from everything is – is that politics is about government, about the use of force. And our disagreements – ALL OF THEM, are about attempting to use force to get what we could not through persuasion.

        Despite my often bitter attacks on the left – I am a “lefty” – in the sense that I favor diversity. I think this country and people as individuals are better off with greater tolerance and greater diversity.

        I part with the left over only two things – but those things are critical.
        Facts, and the use of force.

        I am not free to use force to compel you to live as I wish – even if I am right about how you should live. I have defended the right of Master Cake and myriads of others to do things that I find offensive. I will be happy to join people in protesting and picketting master cake.
        But I absolutely totally completely oppose the use of force (government) to make Master Cake do what I beleive to be right.

        If you judged demographics by my friends – the country is 70% homosexual. I have supported my friends right to marry who they please, to share equally in all the rights that the rest of us have. I have supported gay rights since the late 70’s – when I first understood what being gay was, and that no matter how much it personally disturbed me, that gay people felt the same love for their partners that I did.

        But it has hurt me, torn me apart to watch people who are my friends, on acheiving there own freedom to live as they wished, to start actively trying to deprive others of the same rights. I fully agree that no god that I know would turn their back on others – gay or straight.

        But we are NOT free to use force to compel others to do what we believe to be right.

        And we should not be surprised when we try to do so and find our social fabric rent and our divisions large and bitter.

        There is only one route to healing our divisions – those who seek to use force to do what they beleive to be good, must stop. It does not matter whether you are right. You may not impose your will by force.

        At different times and on different issues, it is sometimes the left, and sometimes the right that seeks to get their way through force.

        At this time, the primary advocates of force are on the left,
        and that is where our problem is.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 16, 2019 2:02 am

        I frequently post here.

        Prof. Turley is an old school liberal – a civil libertarian. I do not always agree with him, though I do alot. The comment section has plenty of nut jobs – on both sides, and plenty of vitriole.

        I would not call it a moderate site. Though it is a site where those on the left and the right manage to coexist – often very immoderately.

        Overall I found the nastiness of the comments – less than those here.
        That does not mean that there was not lots of sniping.

  10. dhlii permalink
    August 15, 2019 2:43 pm

  11. dhlii permalink
    August 15, 2019 2:51 pm

    Woodstock at 50

  12. August 15, 2019 11:59 pm

    Well Dave I have to say you were right on this one. Notice paragraph #3.

    According to the left wing news, the sky is falling.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 16, 2019 3:40 am

      I am highly dubious of claims that americans are being hurt by Trump’s tarrifs.

      Just to be clear – I am talking about facts, I am not talking about what is right.

      I remain vigorously opposed to tariffs. Trade wars are very dangerous.

      But all that said:

      Trump’s rhetoric is tremdously anti-globalist (though we have to be careful about what “globalist” means), but the incredibly global nature of the economy means that China’s efforts to retaliate against us – and our targeting of China have little effect on americans.

      If China buys Soy for Brazil instead of the US – whoever bought brazilian Soy before, needs Soy.

      The effect of China’s retaliation against the US has been almost without impact.
      Pull up the production figures for the crops the Chinese are not buying from the US – and there is barely a blip on the production curve.

      The vast majority of what the US exports generally – and specifically to china is comodities.
      The chinese can buy those goods elsewhere and we can sell ours elsewhere. Supply is NOT sufficiently elastic in Soy or produce. Musical chairs with no one pulling out a chair.

      But the converse is not true. What the US does not buy from China – china is not going to sell. The rest of the global market does not have enough demand to make up for US purchases.

      There were forces driving production from China BEFORE this spat.
      As Chinese labor costs rise – as they have been for decades, either US automated production becomes attractive or less developed countries with cheaper labor become attractive. china was losing textiles before the trade war, and losing manufacturing to the US before the trade war. Absent the trade war that would have been a problem and would have required adjustments, but would not have been a huge problem for China.
      This trade war has accelerated the exodus of production from China. Companies are moving production from China to other parts of Asia. China is facing severe problems with capital flight – that is negatively impacting investment. Despite the fact that americans view China as the lendor buying our debt – china has massive debt itself. We have poor information on that, but there are estimates that Chinese debt may exceed 300% of GDP. China has managed that enormous debt from the money provided by its trade surplus with the US that is dwindling and other factors are eating away rapidly at chinese surplus capital.

      Hong Kong is happening concurrently with this. China is threatening force. And they may resort to force. But the price to pay will be enormous.
      When Russia invaded Crimea 80B in foreign capital left Russia in a few weeks. The Russian economy has not recovered from that loss of investment. That capital flight preceded and was independent of sanctions.

      The Asain financial crisis in the late 90’s that was devestating to much of south east asia, was amplified many many times because at the first signs of trouble hundreds of billions in investment left Asia in weeks. China is highly vulnerable to that.

      I am hoping that Trump’s soft rhetoric regarding Hong Kong is because he knows he does not need to say a thing. Because Xi is not stupid and knows that while no one will retaliate militarily and there might even be no formal sanctions, that using force in Hong Kong will have massive negative economic consequences.

      I hear lots of people talk of China as a rising economic power – and she is. But there is no nation on earth with the economic might of the US. Even if the GDP of China and the US were equal – the US is near invulnerable to capital flight (for now), China is not. No investor in the world is ever going to think of the US economy as having the same level of risk as anywhere else on the planet. China does not and will not have that economic stability for a long long time.

      We are hearing talk that this conflict with China is likely to trigger a recession.
      The probability of a serious economic impact on china is very high – at this point certain.
      Further China’s devaluation of the Yuan will likely save chinese production – but it does so by directly subsidizing US consumers at the expense of the Chinese people.
      It assures that more of the impact will fall on china.

      It is probable that a recession in China will negatively impact the world – but it will not UNIFORMLY negatively impact the world.

      I am not sure of the impact on the rest of asia – there are reasons that weakness in the chinese economy harm the rest of asia, but alot of the capital flight is to other asian countries, and alot of the production flight is to other asian countries.
      I have no idea whether the net will be negative of positive for much of asia

      The European economy has been weak for 50 years. Hiccups anywhere in the world cause problems in the EU.

      A recession in China or Asia or the EU will negatively impact the US. But the scale of the impact in the US will be less than elsewhere.

      We are already seeing stockmarket impacts – but the US stock market has been out of sync with the economy since the financial crisis. Stocks skyrocketed during the obama administration even with a weak economy. There are reasons for that, but they are not relevant here. The important point is that the conflict with china can have large impacts on the US stock market with much much smaller impacts on the economy.

      The big losers will be IRA’s but not MOSTLY the base economy.

      Most of the prediction models I have seen reported, have Trump winning in 2020 if the economy is above 2% growth. But 2% will not produce the landslide I keep predicting – just a Trump win.

      To those who keep saying Trump is stupid.

      Maybe Trump is incredibly lucky. Or maybe he actually knows what he is doing.

      If the conflict between the US and china results in Trump losing in 2020 – I will take that as proof that Trump is as stupid as some people claim. If however the negative impacts on the US are small, I would strongly suggest that all of us consider the possiblity that Trump is as he likes to say “Smart than the generals (or the economy).

      I would also offer that Trump has an Ace up his sleeve or atleast the possibility of one that has greatly improved in the past month with Johnson becoming UK PM.

      A real UK-US free trade deal would be a huge win-win for both the UK and the US.

      It would significantly mitigate any impact of the conflict with China on the US, AND significantly mitigate the impact of Brexit on the UK.
      And a pure free trade deal with the UK is something Trump would have zero trouble selling to his base.

      I would also note that Hong Kong is the 3rd most consequential financial center in the world.
      After NYC and London. Absolutely no matter what HK is going to get kicked in the teeth.
      If the Chinese use military force in HK – a large portion of the financial markets are going to leave en masse. Further China has other large Finacial markets – though not on the scale of HK – they are taking a large hit no matter what.

      One last thing. Trump would have far greater difficultly with this conflict with China had he not boosted the US economy first. Just about every place above where I claim the US has an advantage – that advantage would be MUCH smaller at 2% growth than at 3%.

      Trump can (barely) afford to risk a 1% hit to US growth.
      Obama was absolutely never in a position to do so.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 16, 2019 3:52 am

      Sorry, a few other things.

      There is already evidence that China is trying to meddle in the 2020 election in ways much larger and much less subtle than claimed regarding the Russian in 2020.

      China’s strategy at the moment seems to be to try to make it to 2020 and hope Trump loses.
      And they are doing more than HOPE, they are starting to actively pursue that.

      The impact of China trying to take down Trump in the US election will be absolutely totally devastating to DEMOCRATS. After spending 2 years carping about Trump/Russia the democratic party can not survive even the perception that China is aiding them.

      Not even aiding them against their wishes.

      And there is nothing that the Democrats can do about it.
      Even the democrats attacking China – benefits Trump.

      If you want to question Trump’s character – I will listen.

      But Trump is either the luckiest man to ever live or he is far smarter than we give him credit for.

      And specifically to Ron and those ticked off by alot of what Trump says.

      Absolutely he is capable of pissing off even his supporters.

      But what is the NET effect ? Trump’s war with the left has driven democrats to the left.
      Trump has wreaked havoc on Pelosi’s plans to make the Democrats look good
      Trump has driven Pelosi into bed with the Squad – at the time she was trying to disempower them. Trump has made AOC the face of the entire democratic party.

      I have no idea if Trump really asked Israel to block Ilbran and Presley.
      While the stories are mostly hostile to Trump and Israel,
      All bad press is not as bad as it seems.

      The stories are essentially reading – even if these congressmen are anti-semites plotting to take down israel Netenyahu should have let them in.

      It is not good for Democrats any time any member of the squad gets public attention.

  13. Savannah Jordan permalink
    August 16, 2019 10:33 pm

    There was a ban on assault weapons during the Clinton Administration. The government did not confiscate non-assault weapons. We have rules regarding who can drive a car, how fast we can drive, do we have insurance. That doesn’t mean the government is going to confiscate cars If you distrust the government how is having an assault allay that fear? Are you going to successfully fight a government that can drop a hydrogen bomb on a dissident region? The only function of assault weapons is to kill other citizens. they do not in any way form a defense against a tyrannical government.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 17, 2019 12:53 am

      There was an AWB during the Clinton administration.
      It was entirely cosmetic. It did not effect the number of AR-15’s sold – in fact they went Up dramatically.
      Some of the most Famous US mass shootings happened during the AWB – like Columbine.
      There were no AR-15’s no “assualt rifles” at columbine.

      • August 17, 2019 1:51 am

        Very interesting. Semi automatic handguns with max 10 round clips and a shot gun. And these clips don’t qualify for most of the democrats bans. In reading about that, had the actually read how to make a bomb and have it go off, many more would have died from the bombs in the cafeteria that failed to ignite and the bombs in the cars that failed to explode were many gathered.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 17, 2019 5:36 am

        In terms of the issues we face – mass shootings are essentially noise.

        Each year the police shoot more unarmed people than are killed by mass shooters.
        The largest portion of those are black.

        To build on Rick’s “Fact” theme – 100% of all unarmed people shot by police are …. wait for it, shot by police and unarmed. There is a perfect correlation. And about 80% of them are black.

        I do not want to start a BLM thing going – because police shootings have been on a slow decline for a long time. and even though lots of unarmed blacks are shot by police – they are often shot by black or minority cops. There is no evidence of systemic racism.
        But it is trivial to tell a part of the story and make it seem like there is.

        100% of all mass shootings involve guns – duh.
        100% of automobile fatalities involve cars.

      • August 17, 2019 1:20 pm

        If you want people to believe something,make it a sound bite, say it often, use some fact that is true or not true but makes it sound real and say it for a long period of time. After a period of time, people begin to believe it and will act on it. This DC gun chart shows the opposite of what gun control should show and what proponents say.

        Just like now, the democrats are saying we are going into a recession, they are saying it often, they are using one economic fact (inverted interest rates) and they will be saying it for a long period of time. People will begin believing it is happening, They will cut back on purchases and that will make the democrat lie a reality so the economy is weak in Nov 2020.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 17, 2019 4:13 pm

        I watched a TED Talk recently that started out excellent before going off the rails.

        It started by stating that complex systems – like economics and weather, and particle physics are nearly always governed by very simple rules.

        The problem is that even if you have a simple rule that predicts near perfectly the behavior of a single interaction, when you scale the system to billions, and even trillions of concurrent and continuous interactions, the system is no longer predictable – even if you know all the rules.

        The fundamental rules of economics are relatively simple. The rules of economics are at their core just rules of human behavior. But human behavior in economic exchanges – despite variation is highly predictable – and that is the LAWS of economics – and they are immutable. We just plain can not “nudge” people to behave outside of those LAWS.
        In fact we have found that PREDICTABLY, humans will react to NUDGES to push the entire system back to as close as possible to what would have been without the nudge.
        And that is why the 2nd order effects of all government actions are usually larger than the first order effects. Because people push back and try to restore what was before.

        They do not typically succeed – atleast not completely, and as a result the NET is almost always WORSE. Most laws would work, if humans just did what the law sought to push them into doing. But they do not. Not with environmental laws, gun laws, minimum wage laws, ….

        Back to economics (and everything).

        For any proposition, for any projection, for any hypothesis, there is ALWAYS some statistic or other evidence to support it. The world is just so incredibly complex that there is evidence in that complexity to find a correlation atleast in something to whatever outcome you want.

        Further you can expand that evidence exponentially – if you are willing to muddy the meaning of words. Rick was absolutely correct – semi-automatic weapons were uses in 23 or 24 mass shootings. Almost every single handgun is a “semi-automatic”.
        But Only about 1/2 of all mass shootings involve semi-automatic rifles, and only about 1/4 of all mass shooting deaths are from semi-automatic rifles.

        But even those statistics are highly unstable – atleast in the short run.
        The Las Vegas Shooter used exclusively semi-autmatic rifles and killed 58 people.
        In one instant he doubled the number of deaths from semi-automatic rifles.
        But over time things will regress back to norms.

        Regardless statistics on extremely rare events like mass shootings are almost useless.
        A single event can totally warp the data.

        What it can not do, is change the fact that these are extremely rare events.

        Back to the economy again. There are alot of good reasons to be concerned right now.
        As much as I would like to blame the nay sayers for essentially self fullfilling prophecy.

        As I noted earlier – nudges do not work – including scaring people into recession.

        I want to be careful even about guessing.

        What is going on with China is a BIG deal.

        There is good reason to SUSPECT china is in serious economic trouble.
        But China is such a black box to us, it is hard to be certain.
        But if our best guesses are right – there are serious problems.
        China is heading for recession.
        BTW a recession in china would be very low growth rather than negative growth.
        But the chinese economy MUST have higher growth or there will be serious political unrest.

        Not mentioned in the HK mess is that HK has had weakened economic growth recently.
        People in HK are angry with the chinese – not merely over rights, but also over a weaker economy.

        Problems in China will effect the rest of the world – even the US.

        But the scale of the problem outside of china, and more importantly to us, the impact on the US is harder to assess.

        In the bubble of pure US china relations – China could have a severe recession and have minor negative impact on the US. China SELLS us things, they BUY little from us.
        That is the problem you are upset about. But that means reductions in their buying have little effect on the US. And there is no chance they are going to sell us less.

        I very much do not like the brinksmanship Trump is engaged in (most everywhere)

        But my prediction is that he wins – pretty much all of it, and pretty much all the time.

        China is currently trying to last through 2020 and hope for a democrat president.
        I do not think they can make it.

        I am absolutely certain we are looking at events in HK like those in Poland with Solidarity.
        The only question is how long can Xi and China hang on.
        I do not know that.

        With respect to the US – my guess is that Trump is NOT going to have 3% growth through 2020. But anything about 2% probably gets him re-elected. And I do not think we will see sub 2% growth.

        I would further note recessions are incredibly hard.

        They are always trivial to explain after the fact, but impossible before hand.
        There are a few places I have concerns – our balloning student debt. and the fact that we have not fixed any of the porblems that caused the “great recession”. All the truly evil things in the fincial sector regulation are still present – if anything worse,

        BUT at this moment they do not appear to be causing misplaced exhuberance. or willful blindness regarding risk – and those are the precondictions for recession.

    • August 17, 2019 1:00 am

      Savannah, it is great to see someone here with a new set of views that can be debated I sure hope you stick around. And should I or anyone else here use pronouns like “you”, do not take it to mean “you personally” but “you” as a collective of others with differing views. There are way to many sites where one makes a comment and they get creamed by the opposing side and “you” means “you personally’ I avoid those sites!

      Yes there was a ban on assault weapons during the Clinton administration. And that was legislation that was an outgrowth of Bush 41’s executive order that banned these weapons from being imported from foreign countries. But why our illustrious government put a sunset provision into that legislation and let it sunset in 2004 is beyond my comprehension. We would be much better off had it stayed as the views then were not as radical on each end of the political spectrum as now..

      But I do not believe one can compare driving a car to owning a gun. There is no amendment that guarantees one can drive a car unlike gun ownership. The arguement goes to the words “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” The courts have to decide what “infringement” would be and if banning assault weapons would fall until that wording.

      I agree that there is really no useful purpose for anyone to use an assault weapon for protection. I see no purpose for hunting. I have a shot gun and will use it if someone breaks into my home. One shot will blow them away. No need for 50. And I only need to point it in the general direction of the intruder, not aim it to hit what I want to hit. My son carries bank deposits to the night drop from his restaurant and carries a handgun (with a carry permit) It holds enough bullets to protect him.

      But the issue comes back to what I referenced before the FBI began raiding NRA members homes with sketchy evidence in the 70’s. The declining trust in government and the increasing use of force that the government uses to achieve it objective. I call it creeping government where they get one little thing they want and then they take just a little more.That seemed to occur in the 90’s with Washington D.C. banning handguns and requiring others to be store unloaded and securely locked. That case defined “creeping” government and fed the fears that all guns would be banned. SCOTUS ruled in Heller v D.C that the legislation was not legal and went against the 2nd amendment.

      That is what many (maybe not me completely) but most of the people opposing the assault weapon ban believe will happen again if the assault weapons are banned. First the assault weapon, then anything automatic, then 12 bullets, 6 bullets until they ban guns completely. And if SCOTUS becomes liberal, that most likely could happen.

      It is not that having an assault weapon is going to allay a fear that a tyrannical government will take over, it is the fear that we will end up like the UK and other countries where all weapons are banned for the most part.

      Last, in the first part of the 2nd amendment it states ” A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State” the founding fathers defined militia meaning the “citizens” (that were the militia at the time) were guaranteed to keep arms to protect a free state. That also is viewed very differently between liberals and conservatives.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 17, 2019 5:00 am

        I will be happy to compare guns to cars. Gun owners kill fewer people.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 17, 2019 5:13 am

        The history of the 2nd amendment is actually equivocal.

        There is zero doubt that northern and western state absolutley intended an individual uninfringable right to bear arms.

        Southern states had different traditions and different fears. Southern plantation owners were outnumbered by blacks something like 7:1 And southern plantation owners did not have a really great relationship with other southerners – most of who lived in worse conditions than slaves. Regardless the southern states explicitly intended guns to be kept in secure armories.

        The muddy language of the 2nd amendment reflects this. As with many laws even today – it was written so that each side could claim it meant what they wanted it to mean.

        The recent SCOTUS decisions strengthening gun rights DO NOT rest on the 2nd amendment. They rest on the 14th. While the founders were not clear. The authors of the 14th amendment were crystal clear. The “priviledges and immunities clause” of the 14th amendment was explicitly intended to guarantee to newly freed slaves not merely all the rights, but essentially completely equal treatment by the law for negros. Openly disscussed and explicitly intended was the individual right of negros to own firearms.

        There is lots of other history to the “priviledges and immunities” clause – it was explicitly intended as a slap in the face of the supreme court of the time. It was intended to strengthen the 9th and 10th amendments and to make clear that the priviledges and immunities clause in the constitution (not the 14th amendment) was to be given TEETH.

        The authors did not use the term ‘rights” deliberately – priviledges and immunites was intended to remove from the domain of government things that were not generally recognized as “rights”

        Whenever we are discussing “limited government” we should not constrain ourselves to the constitution and bill of rights. The reconstruction amendments were explicitly intended to fix the fact that both state and federal power had grown – with the blessing of the supreme court and the reconstruction amendments were intended to reshackle government.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 17, 2019 5:14 am

        As a matter of grammar the “millitia clause” of the 2nd amendment has no meaning. It is an explanation or justification, it is not a constraint. There is no gramatically valid way to read it as limiting the operative clause.

      • August 17, 2019 1:11 pm

        Dave, Militia may not have meaning as written, but do you REALLY believe Roberts won’t find some way to make it have meaning so the court does not “appear political”. Bush 43 was bad president and this appointment was one of his worst.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 17, 2019 3:37 pm


        Roberts is the proof of my attacks on “moderates”.

        When you try to find the answer in the middle, split the baby, placate everyone,
        When you operate on the principle that if everyone is equally upset with the result you have it right – that would be Roberts. That is “moderate” – atleast as is often defined here.

        I am less hard on OConner as she “repented” after leaving SCOTUS.
        She ultimately decided that her decisions on Religious freedom were wrong – that it trumped our drug laws, that Kelo was decided wrong. …..

        When we get a BAD scotus decision – it is EASIER to fix than these messy “compromises”.

        Roberts seems to actually understand the constitution and rights. His decisions on issues that he does not percieve as threats to the court itself are often quite good.

        But he does nto understand that principles matter MOST in the hard cases.

        And that is also what is wrong with the arguments that get made about “moderate” here.

        In any given issue – for those that have an answer – and many like mass shootings DO NOT have an answer, the right answer is no more likely the moderate one than the left or right one. More simply often the EXTREME is the RIGHT answer. It is wrong – sometimes even immoral to sacrifice right for moderate. It is often even better to lose, to get the WRONG answer than to compromise.

        Just to be clear I am NOT positing a universal rule. I am attacking an existing “moderate” universal rule that is WRONG. Sometimes the MODERATE answer is right. But not ALWAYS. not even most of the time.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 17, 2019 1:11 am

      “We have rules regarding cars”

      Yes, we also have rules that similar apply to guns that no one opposes – like you can not murder people.

      We do not have rules that say you have to get special permission from government to buy a car.
      We do not have rules that say you can not buy a motorcycle or you can not buy a sports car.

      The 2nd and 14th amendments are not generally considered to apply to cars.

      There is actually no state in the US that requires that you have insurance to drive a car.
      Every state has the option to post a bond.

      Do I distrust government – absolutely!
      Does having a gun allay that fear – no, it provides more options should government infringe on our rights too much.

      We have been through this before – read the declaration of independence.

      “whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends (securing rather than infringing on our rights), it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government,” By force if necescary.

      The history of the world tells us that no government serves its people well forever.
      That all government trends toward abuse ultimately.
      At best some forms move to tyranny more slowly.

      Regardless the question is not whether guns “allay” that fear. It is whether they are an impediment first, and a remedy second to the natural tendency of government toward tyranny. They are.

      The purpose of an armed populace is not PRIMARILY direct conflict with the US military.
      It is as a threat to politicians.

      I am not especially concerned about the US military – do you really beleive that if Trump or Sanders ordered the US Airforce to drop an atomic bomb on Alabama they would do so ?

      Do you really beleive that if some US president ordered Tanks to be used against the people of detroit – that the Army would do so ?

      If government became so tyranical that the people felt compelled to confront it with arms,
      I suspect few in the military would follow orders to oppose.

      Even in East Germany in 1989 – the military refused Honnekers orders to fight the people – and the Berlin Wall collapsed and shortly after the USSR fell.

      That would have occured faster had eastern europeans been as well armed as americans are.

      Or more accurately a situation like the USSR never would have come about.

      Regardless if you argue that the government is likely to drop H-Bombs on people or send in tanks – you have already lost the argument, you have demonstrated that even you beleive that government is dangerous. The good news is I do not beleive governemtn is nearly as dangerous as you. I beleive the danger is sufficiently small that before we get to the point were AR-15’s are insufficient the problem will be resolved.
      In fact I beleive that the existance of an armed population is the reason we will never get to the point were we need to take arms against the government.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 17, 2019 1:30 am

      Actual assault weapons are illegal already.

      Every gun in the US EXCEPT bolt action rifles, and arguably pump action shotguns is a “semi-automatic weapon”
      Every single one of those – something like 350Million, will fire one bullet for each pull of the trigger, for atleast 5 shots before reloading.

      The difference between a Glock and an AR-15 is that:
      The barrel of an AR-15 is much longer and therefore the velocity of SOME AR-15 rounds is significantly higher – therefore they can travel farther and more accurately.

      Pretty much all mass shooters have handguns – usually several. They are far more effective in “killing civilians”. SOME Mass killers also have semi-automatic rifles.
      The have those because – AR-15’s look scary – they are intimidating.
      In most Mass Shootings – they are LESS effective than handguns.
      They do not fire any faster, they are much slower to shift, they are more effective at killing large numbers of people at close range. It is harder to deflect a handgun that an rifle.
      If you get close enough to a mass shooter to reach the tip of the barrel – the gun is useless,
      If you are right in the face of a mass shooter with a handgun – you are still dead.
      You must take a handgun away from a massshooter. All you have to do is get near enough an AR-15 to deflect it.

      The one useful feature of a semi-automatic rifle to a mass killer is that there is no body armour that is protection against a rifle.
      Therefore a rifle will cause the police to proceed slower.
      The most important thing in a mass shooting is the amount of time the shooter has.
      We were very lucky at California, Dayton and El passo in that the shooters targeted places with security and in dayton police already present.
      Most mass shooters seek out places where the police are distance and there is no security.

      If none of their targets have guns – hence the reason they like to target gun free zones,
      they have 3-10 minutes before police arrive. The number of people who are killed is directly proportionate to the time it takes for someone with a gun to arrive.

      The moment there is ANYONE with a gun at a mass shooting – the shooter has to focus on defense. They have to seek cover and move slowly – basically the killing stops.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 17, 2019 1:56 am

      “The only function of assault weapons is to kill other citizens. they do not in any way form a defense against a tyrannical government.”

      Oppinion misstated as fact.

      Have you ever heard of Ruby Ridge ?

      FBI officers without a warrant murdered Randy Weaver’s son, his infant child, his dog, a friend and his wife.

      After murdering the dog and his son, Weaver and the rest of his family held off the FBI for 11 days.

      I think when the government murders your dog and son without a warrant – that is tyranny.
      Even if you think there is some justification – I think Weaver was justified in beleiving it was Tryanny. And after the fact the courts decided that Weavers actions were justified too.

      Or have you heard of Wacco ?

      Five Armed ATF agents tried to break into the home of a religious community and murdered several of the congregations. They were forced to retreat by the davidians weapons.
      That seige lasted 51 days – before the government murdered all the branch davidians – including their children.

      Wacco and Ruby Ridge were Timothy McVeigh’s justification for the OKC bombing.

      I am not sympathetic to McVeigh – meaning the misconduct at Wacco and Ruby Ridge as bad as it was, was not a justification for OKC.

      It did however demonstrate that it is possible to inflict serious harm to a tyranical government.

      The Bundy;s held off the government for weeks in Oregon in protest over BLM illegally confiscating their land.

      In a separate incident in Nevada other members of the Bundy familiy ultimately peacebly ended an armed standoff with BLM and FBI.

      Once again after the courts examined things – the media narrative failed. The FBI had provoked the armed conflict and the Bundy’s remained passive – It was found that the FBI had setup snipers ahead of time targetting the bundy’s

      There were several trials and all ultimately ended up with charges dismissed.
      And the court excoriating law enforcement.

      Our government often acts tyrannically. BLM and FBI have learned that most families in the west are armed and that you need to deal with them respectfully.

      The Bundy’s, Weaver, the Davidian’s are all odd balls. They are religious nutcases.
      But none of them were actually dangeorus – until confronted by armed government agents acting OUTSIDE the law.

      I would suggest reading Radley Balko’s book “The Rise of the Warrior cop”.

      In 1960 law enforcement in the US had revolvers and a few pistols.
      Today there are 3500 Swat teams throughout the US. These teams have body armour, flash bang grenades, and M16’s – that is an ACTUAL “Assault Rifle” – and quite a bit more dangerous than an AR-15, many of them have Armoured personel carriers.

      We just had an incident were a drug dealer got into a gun fight with police who were trying to arrest him.

      That is unbeleiveably rare. To the extent criminals have weapons it is to use against other criminals or against their victims. Criminals almost never use a weapon against a police officer. A drug dealer who looks funny at a gun is dead if the police come to arrest him.
      The mere presence of a gun adds atleast 5 years to their sentences.

      The fact is that police very rarely encounter a criminal prepared to shoot it out with the police.
      There is virtually no need for swat teams. Yet they are legion throughout government.
      Even the Department of Education has a swat team. Can you explain to me why anyone in the Federal government outside of the FBI has a swat team ?

      Why do we want the Department of Education – or HHS having a swat team ?

      So you do not think your govenrment is dangeorus ?

    • dhlii permalink
      August 17, 2019 2:04 am

      Savannah – do not take me at my word.

      I would strongly encourage you to get past tropes that you have heard.
      If this is an issue that you really care about – then learn about it.

      Do not take as gospel what I say. At the same time use the same skepticism for those whose views you seem to have adopted uncritically.

      It is nearly impossible to find “unbiased” sources of information – on pretty much any topic.
      And even if you do, whatever conclusions those sources come to the side whose ox gets gored is going to claim they are biased.

      If you want to learn truth – start with skepticism of your own position – no matter what it is.
      That is hard to do, but it is very difficult to get past confirmation bias. Whatever position you hold you need LOTS of exposure to that of people who do not share your views.
      Preferably to the BEST exponents of the position you disagree with.

      When you have heard what the best of those you disagree with argue. When you have checked their claims and facts, if you still hold to your views – either you have found the truth, or you are beyond hope.

  14. Priscilla permalink
    August 17, 2019 11:52 am

    Over the course of my life, I have become a strong believer in gun rights. I also believe that there are reasonable limits that can and should be placed on those rights, and that most of those limits are already codified into law. The fact that these laws are not enforced doesn’t make the right to own a gun any less important.

    What arguments have been convincing to me?

    1) Every American should have the right to defend him/herself and his/her property. It has always disgusted me when elites who have armed bodyguards, tell the rest of us that we should take our chances against those who would do us harm, because guns are “too dangerous.” They are not dangerous to responsible, law-abiding, non-suicidal adults. Virtually all mass shootings could be stopped by armed citizens at the scene. Most mass shootings take place in “gun-free” zones. Women, in particular should be armed, particularly women who live in high crime areas, where they and their children are vulnerable to violent crime.

    Another person’s irresponsibility should not remove my inalienable right to self-defense. It that person chooses to shoot himself or someone else, my rights should not be abridged.

    2) Socialist governments always disarm their citizens, before they rob, imprison, or massacre them. (See Germany, Venezuela. Also, note that protestors in Hong Kong are waving American flags and demanding a 2nd Amendment-style right of their own) Will a semi-automatic handgun or rifle defend against a full-on attack of armored vehicles, nuclear bombs, etc. Of course not. But, had Jews in Germany been armed, putting them in death camps would have been far more difficult, and would have gotten the attention of the rest of the world , perhaps before it was too late. Not too many years ago, I would have scoffed at the idea that any political party or government in the US would attempt to violently oppress or control law-abiding American citizens of a different political persuasion.. Today, I’m not so sure. In fact, I believe that it is eminently possible.

    3) Semi-automatic weapons are not “assault weapons” unless they are used as such. Machine guns are illegal, and have been for decades. Large capacity magazines are standard equipment these days, and there is no correlation between crime and the size of a magazine.

    Enforce the gun laws on the books. Reform our mental health care system. Reform our educational system. Don’t disarm good citizens.

    • August 17, 2019 1:33 pm

      “I would have scoffed at the idea that any political party or government in the US would attempt to violently oppress or control law-abiding American citizens of a different political persuasion.. Today, I’m not so sure. In fact, I believe that it is eminently possible.”

      Careful Priscilla, I have been called “paranoid” and “somewhat nuts” when I mention distrust in government.

      Maybe we could meet when they lock both of us up in the mental ward (-_-).

      • Priscilla permalink
        August 20, 2019 10:38 am

        Yes…let’s hope that we don’t get put in the organ donor’s wing!

        “Despite the absence of an organized system of organ donation or allocation, wait times for obtaining vital organs in China are among the shortest in the world—often just weeks for organs such as kidneys, livers, and hearts. This has made it a destination for international transplant tourism and a major venue for tests of pharmaceutical anti-rejection drugs. The commercial trade in human organs has also been a lucrative source of revenue for the Chinese medical, military and public security establishments. Because there is no effective nationwide organ donation or allocation system, hospitals source organs from local brokers, including through their connections to courts, detention centers and prisons.”

      • dhlii permalink
        August 20, 2019 6:28 pm

        The problems with the chinese justice system is completely independent.

        Outside of we know that getting government OUT of organ donations works better than any other approach.

        Much of China’s approach is free market.
        BUT the use of organs from prisoners is clearly GOVERNMENT meddling in the free market.

      • Priscilla permalink
        August 20, 2019 6:45 pm

        I can’t agree with you on this, Dave. China is not free market, it’s a centrally controlled and subsidized economy, which has taken advantage of and perverted free market principles in order to become a global economic power. The Chinese government is brutal and authoritarian, and the fact that they slaughter political dissidents in order to sell their organs is the epitome of evil. It is as bad as anything that the Nazis did.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 17, 2019 2:21 pm

      I have held different positions on Guns at different times in my life.

      Even today – though I would still expect that you would change the constitution first, I am open to discuss gun laws THAT ACTUALLY WORK.

      But I have zero interest – whether the issue is guns or healthcare or environmental protection in feel good laws that do not deliver on any promise and have a NET negative impact.

      I went after Rick for reacting emotionally. He responded with an inaccurate fact.
      But Even if his “fact” was correct – it was still a fact standing alone in the air. That fact did not provide a basis one way or the other for effective action.

      100% of all mass shootings – involve people. We could eliminate all mass shootings by eliminating people.

      It is absolutely true that if it was actually possible to eliminate every single “semi-automatic” weapon on the planet – there would be no more mass killings with semi-automatic weapons.
      But that tells us absolutely nothing about the impact on mass killings as a whole.
      Further getting rid of every single semi-automatic weapon on the planet is a ludicrously impossible hypothetical. In the US over 40 years 50 rifles have been used in mass shootings – many of which were not “semi-automatic”. There are between 5 and 10 million AR-15’s in the US today and probably double that in semi-automatic rifles. You are as likely to git rid of all of them as you are to get rid of all the knives in the country.

      It is not happening, and anything short of a massive effort that involves confiscation of hundreds of millions of weapons from hundreds of millions of people will have no effect.
      The very last people you will successfully deprive of guns are criminals.

      In the US efforts to confiscate weapons – will be met by force. It is likely that most of us will gripe and comply – but if only a few thousand people are willing to resist the confiscation of their weapons by force – the number of dead from mass killings will look paltry. If you start sending SWAT teams to confiscate guns – there are going to be thousands of dead police officers and tens of thousands of dead otherwise law abiding citizens.

      New Zealand just implimented Austrailia style gun control and confiscation.
      They have about a 30% non-compliance rate. And New Zealand just did not have a fraction of the gun ownership the US has.

      Further the only difference between this debate over guns and the debate over myriads of other similar laws – is that we have a large vocal contingent of the population resisting gun control.

      I recently tripped over a massive amount of data on Automobile child safety.

      Infant car seats appear to be more effective than alternatives. But the statistical data on Car Safety seats for children 2 and over is that there is no statistically significant difference between the use of car seats and not. Children over 2 on the whole are as safe without a car seat in accidents as they are with them. The information comes from real world data collected from actual accident reports. But very preliminary studies have been done with crash test dummies that is consistent with the real world – though I thought the purpose of testing was to model the real world – not the other way arround.

      Regardless there are some subtle differences – Car Seats are BARELY statistically significantly safer in front end collisions where the child is in the front passenger seat.
      But they fare signifcantly worse in side impacts.

      What is the chance we are going to see car seat laws for kids over two go away ?

      We have the same thing with things like our FDA. I have heard people HERE argue that without the FDA or food and our drugs would not be safe – that people would die.

      Well guess what – people ARE dying. The cost to get a drug through the FDA approval process is heading towards $2B. That means that any drug that can not produce $2B in profits in about 7 years will not get developed. PERIOD. If you have some illness of disease that will not produce $2B in profits – no one is even going to try to help you. You are doomed to suffer – and possibly die.

      We have passed orphan drug laws and expedited processes that are supposed to address this – they do not work. The FDA will not expedite the approval process NO MATTER WHAT, no FDA bureaucrat is going to sign off on a drug that has not had massive testing – because they will get blamed for any deaths. It is ok to preserve the status quo – because we do not count people who would have lived if drugs were allowed to be developed, Nor will drug companies work on orphan drugs – even with orphan drug laws – they know the FDA is not going to cut them slack and they know they too will be held accountable.

      Nor is this confined to drugs – virtually all medical treatment that is under the FDA proceeds abysmally slowly.

      I am really really tired of “feel good laws” that make PREDICTABLY make things worse not better. Not just gun laws – but ALL laws.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 17, 2019 2:53 pm

      I want to address “assault weapons” or more accurately the deliberate destruction of language – 1984 NewSpeak. As Orwell noted – if you control language you control people.

      The deliberately misrepresentative use of words is not confined to guns.

      By the actual definition of the word I am a “liberal” – not a conservative, not a “libertarian” – which is just a newish term because the left has mangled the meaning of the term liberal.

      I am a person for whom individual liberty is a foundation principle – that is a liberal.

      We are tossing about the term “racist” all over the place.

      If you are not for open borders – you are a racist. If that is the case – racism has been thoroughly watered down. If you are not for open borders you are not even clearly xenophobic.

      If you oppose immigration from shithole countries you are a racist.
      How is it that white people favoring indian and chinese immigrants over central and south american immigrants is racist ?

      If you are not sure you want your daughter in a womens bathroom or shower with a preoperative MTF trans person – you are transphobic.

      If you think that womens sports should not be for people who have been marinated in testosterone for 15 years of their life – you are intolerate.

      Apparently a normal female has 35% of the upper body strength and 51% of the lower body strength of a normal male. Almost any MTF Trans person is going to be highly competitive with the best in womens sports – women who have trained all their lives.

      Women’s equality may come about very shortly – lead entirely by MTF trans people.
      If that is your idea of equality – MTF Trans people as the leading women in sports and business.

      We have this massive effort to equate speech that we do not like with violence. No one has ever died or been hospitalized by a sharp word. The original “safe space” was a panic room in your home – where people with weapons could not get in to harm you – not a place where you did not have to hear unpleasant words.

      Maybe you can protect yourself from words and ideas that you do not like – but doing so does actual harm to you as a person. You are WORSE off not better off if you retreat to safe spaces and refuse to confront unpleasant ideas. The real world is not especially pleasant.
      You do not have the right to be protected from the world – even just from nature – from rain and snow and huricanes, earthquakes and tornados. Life in nature is solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short as Hobbes noted. You have no right to more. everything beyond that requires human effort – must be earned. The good news is that in thousands of years humans have gotten extremely good at making the quality of our lifes many orders of magnitude better – but that requires effort. Retreating to your “safe space” – ultimately means returning to short, nasty and brutish.

      The point is that getting words right matters. And wherever it is clear that words are being used innacurately – particularly when we are talking about law – and the use of force by government. That is a serious problem. It is near certain that the innaccuracy is NOT a simple lack of precision, but a deliberate effort to hide the actual nature of the issue being debated. Weapons are described as “assault weapons” specifically to conjure in our minds the notion that those who buy those weapons do so with the intention of going out to commit mayhem. We constantly hear – correctly, that no one needs and “assault weapon”.

      Of course we do not. The 10M people who own AR-15’s are not out “assaulting people”.
      They did not buy AR-15’s to “assault” anyone or anything. The term and the language are deliberately in error. Other more accurate phrases for such weapons would be “area defense weapon” – but that denotation does not lend itself to the images that justify infringing on rights.

      We are fixated on “mass shootings” – these are the real world examples of guns being used for the person of “assault” – but given that in 40 years – 50 rifles have been used for “assaults” – out of 10million that pretty much should give the lie to the perception that the purpose of buying these weapons is “assault”. I have zero doubt that in the past year – much less 40 years – more than 50 cars have been used to “assault” people.
      But we do not call cars “assault cars”.

      Language matters – especially when you are using it to justify the use of FORCE.

      If getting it right undermines your arguments – the problem is with your arguments.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 17, 2019 3:16 pm

      I want to challenge your charge to “enforce the laws on the books”.

      While I do not want to add new laws. One of the issues is that we ARE pretty much doing the best we can.

      Some on the gun community WANT Red Flag laws. Or more ability to constrain people with mental health issues.

      I DO NOT. The way to protect one right is NOT to infringe on others.

      There is a much stronger causal relationship between mental health issues and violence than that with weapons. But even there the relationship is correlation not cause.
      schitzophrenics – the most irrationally violent of mental health suffers are on the whole only TWICE as likely to commit acts of violence as normal people.
      While they are radically disproportionately represented in irrational crimes of violence.

      I would absolutely oppose relaxing our contitutional protections for people with mental health problems because they are double the risk of ordinary people for crimes of violence.

      In a different context – across the globe, rates of violence are rigidly tied to ethnicity.

      You can come very close to accurately establishing the rate of violent crime in most any country by knowing the racial mix of the country and the historic rates of violence for each ethnicity. With blacks having the highest rates of violence – about 8 times that of asians who have the least.

      So should we reduce the rights of blacks because they are twice as likely to be involved in violent crimes as whites ? The rate of violence for blacks is about the same as the rate of violence for schizophrencis.

      Should we have be able to go to court and say – he is black, blacks are demonstrably twice as violent – lets deprive him of his rights ?

      Correlation is not enough to infringe on peoples rights.
      Even actual causation is not enough. I think there is little doubt that there is MORE than a correlation between mental health issues and violence. Schizophrenia CAUSES violence.
      But despite near absolute certainty on that, it still does not cause violence 100% of the time. It does not cause violence sufficiently much of the time to justify infringing on the rights of those unfortunate enough to have schitzophrenia.

      Even where we have proof of causation – if the frequency with which that manifests itself is sufficiently low – we STILL have no justification to infringe on rights.

      We have spent centuries addressing mental health.
      We still do not know what the hell we are doing.

      We have instutionalize masses of people – that went really really badly.
      We deinstitutionalized them – and now the mass of permanent homeless in the US are the same people who would have populated our asylums in the past. Further we have turned mental health into a criminal problem – and our prisons are filled with people with serious mental health problems.

      Put simply we have a problem that DOES NOT HAVE AN ANSWER.

      If we made mental health checks manditory and institutionalize every single schizophrenic – assuming we could accurately identify every one. we would cut mass shootings down to almost nothing.

      Are you prepared to do that ? I am not. I will tolerate the small increase in risk to avoid infringing on the rights of a million or so schizophrenics in the US.

      I said that Rick was acting out of emotion. Many many many problems DO NOT HAVE ANSWERS. We do not like that. You can not pass a law to solve a problem that does not have an answer. Maybe sometime in the future we will find an answer to that problem.
      But today we do not have one.

      It is not only acceptable, but the only moral choice for a problem that does not have an answer is not to act blindly to just “do something” to “FEEL” like we have acted.

  15. dhlii permalink
    August 18, 2019 5:34 pm


    You asked for democratic presidential candidates on Guns.

  16. dhlii permalink
    August 18, 2019 5:36 pm

    Wherefore human laws do not forbid all vices, from which the virtuous abstain, but only the more grievous vices, from which it is possible for the majority to abstain; and chiefly those that are to the hurt of others, without the prohibition of which human society could not be maintained: thus human law prohibits murder, theft and such like.

    From his masterpeice – Summa Theologica, Thomas Aquinas

    13th century libertarianism.

  17. August 19, 2019 1:15 pm

    Off the subject of gun control, weapons, killing, etc.

    As has been stated numerious times here, every action has a reaction, many negative. Yesterday they held a farmers market in east Winston Salem, the minority district of town. There were interviews of organizers and customers. Many comments of thanks, need and “food deserts”. One organizer, older lady said years ago minorities lived ” on the wrong side of tracks, in shanty towns, but also houses on small lots”. She went on to say that even though the houses were run down, many with outhouses, the residents also used much of the property to grow vegetables. Some had communities where one person grew tomatoes, one corn, okra, etc, and then everyone shared, canned and preserved crops for winter consumption. Then public housing came, took much of the old homes, people moved into better conditions, but had no way to grow anything. Diets suffered and over the years much public housing today is not much better than the shanty homes due to public housing getting run down by residents who care less because they dont own the house. And with the decline in conditions, grocery stores moved out leaving “food deserts”.

    And she went on about more farmers markets funded by different organizations to provide low cost veggies, but it still does not solve the issue of food deficiencies caused by living conditions and lack of access.

    Basically her words, not mine and before responding, yes the lady was black, not a white middle class white “do gooder” sticking her nose in.

    • Priscilla permalink
      August 20, 2019 10:13 am

      That is a very interesting story, Ron. The idea of “public housing” has always been a flawed one. It basically assumes that people want to live in sub-par neighborhoods, ripe for all kinds of crime, and receive their livelihood from the government, rather than be given the opportunity to rise from poverty.

      Billions of dollars get spent on urban housing projects that isolate poor people from those who can afford decent housing, and more billions are spent on the horrible schools to which they are forced to send their kids. Most of the money spent on “education” goes to providing child care and meals for students, and very little~ if any~ on providing adequate teaching of skills and information that students need to get good jobs.

      When Trump said that Elijah Cummings district was rat infested, and that Cummings did nothing to help, Trump was slammed by the media. But people in Cummings’ Baltimore district said that Trump was right, and that they felt trapped in poverty.

      Encouraging the poor to form communities like the one that this woman talked about, where people work together and support each other is something that many politicians don’t want. They want dependence.

      • August 20, 2019 12:01 pm

        Yes, taking away independence in the name of government support results in dependence. Dependence = vote

        But, once again, Trump might be right about Baltimore, a few in Baltimore might agree with him, but the assinine way he said what he said turns many voters off. Im almost at the point that I would vote for Sanders just to get this nut case out of the White House. I cant watch any news, even local, without hearing some crap Trump has said or tweeted. that day.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 20, 2019 6:46 pm

        How is Trump’s “way” of talking of Baltimore – assinine – given that Cummings himself described Baltimore residents – not merely the city itself as infested with drug addicted zombies.

        Trump’s remarks might be assinine. But then so are those of just about ever politician ever born.

        I do not like the members of “the squad”. I support Israel’s handling of two of them recently.
        Some of the remarks that they have made ARE Anti-semtic (or more actually anti-jewish, since most arabs are semites)

        But all of them are not.

        I think the cartoon recently tweeted by Ilbran was not funny.
        I am pretty sure that both she and the cartoonist are bigots.
        But the cartoon itself was just bad, not “anti-semetic”.

        I think MOST (not all attacks on Israel) are WRONG.
        But all are not inherently bigoted.
        You can disagree on policy without automatically being a bigot.

        What applies to Israel also applies to immigration.

        It is beyond dispute that Trump is anti-illegal immigration.
        That does not make him racist.

        I do not like Trump’s rhetorical style – but that is all it is, just style.

        If the news angers you – do not watch the news.

        Trump is drawing huge crowds to his rallies.

        They may not be “presidential” but they are not hatefilled.
        Trump’s supporters are having fun.

        On Twitter there is a group called “the deplorable choir”.
        There are a bit stereo type – I am not sure that is not deliberate – young anorectic southern blondes. Regardless, there clips are “funny”.

        I have said many times that Trump is “backlash” against the left – and he is.
        But mostly it is not “violent rhetoric”
        Mostly he and his suporters “make fun” of the left.
        Often by carcituring themselves.

        I am not a fan of “the proud boys” – but if they are the pinnacle of white supremacy, white supremacy is pretty tame.
        The PB went to portland, walked arround a circle and went home, and the left went nuts.

        Alot of “trump supporters” are having fun, the left is not having any fun.

        This is also why Trump is likely to be re-elected.

      • August 20, 2019 8:13 pm

        Dave, I have said multiple times in multiple ways why I think Trump is an asshole and youvhave failed to understand, even if you disagree. One has to understand before disagreeing.

        There are ways individuals can say something based on the positions they hold. What Cummings says can be in one manner and it is acceptible based on who he is talking to. He is only talking to a small group of individuals in a small area of the country. Trump is president. He is the president of 100% of America. He is president of liberals, conservatives, libertarians, etc. even if they accept it or not.

        There are few people in leadership in government I would refuse to let them in my home.. Hillary Clinton is one, Trump is another. I find him an obnoxious asshole that uses division to achieve his goals. It wont take many like me to shift the election to the “D”. Unlike you, I fully expect all three arms of government to be in democrat hands.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 21, 2019 6:24 pm

        I agree that Trump is an asshole.

        I would prefer a president who was not.
        But I would choose an asshole over a crook.
        I would choose and asshole over an idiot.
        I would choose and asshole over a racist, a mysoginist.

        We should expect our president not to be an asshole.

        But an asshole remains the lessor evil over a number of other factors.

        Further Trump was elected in part BECAUSE he is an asshole.
        Because Trump’s supporters think he is THEIR Asshole – he is the asshole who bitchslaps the people who have been bullying them.
        That is not the only factor – but it is a major factor.

        And it is a part of why I blame out current mess on the left.

        In any consequential way there is only one side demanding to impose their will on all of us by force at this moment.

        I do not have a problem with the existance of media bias.
        I do have a problem with those who can not see the egregious degree of bias that exists.

        I have a problem with those who attack infowars and think it is somehow different from the new york times.

        NYT won 2 pulitzers for 2 years of pushing a fraud. That should be embarrassing.
        And now they are selling racism.

        Why is it that few seem to understand how incredibly dangerous shouting hateful, hating hater at the drop of a hat is ?

        When you say Trump is a racist – for whatever the last remark he made was – you are also saying the 10’s of millions of people who agree with that remark are racist.

        When you make disagreement over policies into moral conflicts – you had damn well better be absolutely right.

        It is far more dangerous than disagreements over facts.

      • August 21, 2019 7:24 pm

        Ok, now that we agree what he is and why he was elected, you left out one significant factor.

        There were few who found Trump and Clinton unacceptible and were willing to vote for something and not agaist the worst like myself. Many found Clinton to be totally unacceptible in swing states and also questioned Trump, but would not vote for Johnson, a much more “average voters candidate”.

        I believe that many of those never Clinton voters are closer to Biden than Trump in their political beliefs. They remember the “moderate Joe”. I think that handful of voters in PN, NC, WS will vote for Joe because their vote for Trump to begin with was weak.

        This was not a case of soccer moms and democrats supporting Reagan. This was a case where the main stream GOP candidates split the mainstream GOP vote, giving Trump a foothold and then capturing the nomination. We will never know if Trump woukd have gone head to head aganst one other “true” republican if Trump woukd have been nominated, but I have my own doudts. But those never Clinton voters are different than Reagan democrats.

        They will come home if there is anyone they trust nominated.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 21, 2019 10:44 pm

        There are almost never single reasons for anything.

        There are a dozen things that could have tanked the election for Trump.

        but there are also a dozen that could have made the victory more lopsided.

        Regardless, the blame is NOT on the voters. It is on the candidates, the parties, and the campaigns.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 21, 2019 10:53 pm

        You have a point regarding “never Clinton voters” and with certainty the pure never clinton voter is not voting for Trump – unless Clinton is nominated again.

        Further post election Trump has alienated neo-conservatives, and is not likely to get them back. Though I am not sure that short of die hards, the remainder of neo-cons have not just evaporated to become something else. Neo-Conservatism is dead – and that is a good thing.

        At the same time Trump is running atleast 10% higher with all minority groups than any republican in decades.
        Further while democratic zealots are energized the democratic base is NOT.
        Trump does not have to get lots of minority votes. He does not have to keep all the never clinton votes. All he needs is for center left moderates of all flavors to stay home – which is highly likely.

        If you wipe the center out, If this election is decided by those who are certain to vote for Trump, and those who are certain to vote for any democrat – Trump wins – in a landslide. \\

        Every election is a complex battle – between holding onto your base, appealing to those freindly to you in the middle, and discouraging those leaning against you.

        Obama won against Romney by getting several million gop leaning voters in the swing states to stay home.

        Anything short of a crappy economy is a huge head wind for any opponent.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 21, 2019 8:16 pm

        If you wish to treat the same remarks by different people differently – for whatever reasons.
        You are free to do so, but it undermines your credibility.

        That is ALOT of my point – it is NOT Trump’s remarks. It is the disparity in different peoples responses.

        Regardless, Facts do not have feelings. Facts are not racist.
        That is important. If facts divide us – the problem is with whoever thinks the facts are divisive.

        Trump does “use” division – the division created by others.

        BTW Trump is as likely to deliberately drive unity – in bad ways strategically.
        Trump has very effectively driven the democratic party and Pelosi to defend “the squad”.
        That was deliberate, it was effective, and it brought people together rather than apart.
        But it brought democrats together when they should have stayed apart.

      • August 21, 2019 8:39 pm

        and how long will our 24 hour brains remember that the dems came together due to the gang.

        Just a few days ago we heard all these reports that Venezuel ians woukd overthrow their government. Now we hear nothing.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 22, 2019 12:16 am

        It does not matter what we remember, Pelosi was actively struggling to marginalize “the squad” and to give moderate Dems some accomplishments to campaign on in 2020.

        Trump goaded Pelosi into screwing over moderates.

        Trump does this all the time. He is very very effective at getting the press and the left to rush to defend the most left leaning things he can manage.

        The lefts knee jerk anti-trumpism is self destructive and highly manipulable.

        If Trump came out in favor of Cinderalla – the Left would immediately call it racist.

        And that is not a joke or hyperbolee – and that is sad.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 22, 2019 12:18 am

        The odds of Madoru surviving are ZERO.

        Though it does not matter – so long as Venezuella is socialist and a mess the harm is to the left.

        It is actually better for Trump and Republicans for Venezuella to just keep getting worse.

        Every single story about Venezeula is a reminder that is what the left is trying to sell us – THIS CAMPAIGN.

      • August 22, 2019 12:15 pm

        Well duh! Yes, the odds of Maduro surviving is 0%. He could die today from a heart attack. He will be dead of natural causes in 75 years.

        I’m talking about reporting 3 months ago that Guaido would be president in days because the people would overthrow Maduro and cracks in the military support was occuring.

        Nothing in news today, people have moved on, the only constant since 2017 and 2019 is Trumps obnoxious assinine personality that has his approval with women down to 34%. And women elect the president for the most part.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 22, 2019 2:17 pm

        The point is that the world is moving towards freedom – while US democrats are embracing venezuelan socialism.

        I do not know how long Madoru will live. But his presidency has very little time left.

      • August 20, 2019 8:19 pm

        Well Dave, I have said multiple times in multiple ways why I think Trump is an asshole and youvhave failed to understand, even if you disagree. One has to understand before disagreeing.

        There are ways individuals can say something based on the positions they hold. What Cummings says can be in one manner and it is acceptible based on who he is talking to. He is only talking to a small group of individuals in a small area of the country. Trump is president. He is the president of 100% of America. He is president of liberals, conservatives, libertarians, etc. even if they accept it or not.

        There are few people in leadership in government I would refuse to let them in my home.. Hillary Clinton is one, Trump is another. I find him an obnoxious asshole that uses division to achieve his goals. It wont take many like me to shift the election to the “D”. Unlike you, I fully expect all three arms of government to be in democrat hands.

      • August 20, 2019 12:02 pm

        Priscilla, Yes, taking away independence in the name of government support results in dependence. Dependence = vote

        But, once again, Trump might be right about Baltimore, a few in Baltimore might agree with him, but the assinine way he said what he said turns many voters off. Im almost at the point that I would vote for Sanders just to get this nut case out of the White House. I cant watch any news, even local, without hearing some crap Trump has said or tweeted. that day.

      • Priscilla permalink
        August 20, 2019 12:37 pm

        Ron, I do have a lot of friends that feel as you do about Trump. And I worry that he’s turnng off too many people.

        I am much more disturbed by the dishonest media that reports non-stop about whether Chris Cuomo was right to curse and threaten a heckler who called him “Fredo” (a term that he himself has used to refer to Don Jr.) but fails to cover the major cleanup in Baltimore that was organized and carried out by a Trump-supporting GOP group. Or doesn’t call out the outrageous lies of presidential candidates like Harris and Warren, who both said last week that Michael Brown was “murdered” by a cop, when that is blatantly untrue. Or Joe Biden, whose son and brother have become millionaires as a result of sweetheart deals with China, that they got when Biden was VP. Give me Trump’s tweet’s any day over these liars.

        Trump is a bizarre character, that is for sure. And his tweets can be truly cringeworthy, but he almost always turns out to be right. He’s got a sense of humor, and doesn’t take himself as seriously as most politicos, so I can tolerate his tweeting. And he’s been spied on and investigated non-stop, and no one has been able to find anything that he has ever done that was illegal or anti-American. Which is more than I can say for many D.C. politicians.

        I guess, when it comes right down to it, I don’t really care what he tweets, as long as he’s not trying to screw over the people who elected him. But I can sympathize with people like you, who wish that he would give them a reason to support him, or at least stop acting like a reality tv star instead of a president.

      • August 20, 2019 4:15 pm

        Priscilla, we have always had media that picked stories to cover. The reason that Fox exist is due to the MSM becoming a left wing mouth piece, but that is their right. I find what Google, Facebook and Twitter does disturbing, but that is their right. When you have as much money as Zuckerberg, Bezos and others, you have the means to distrubute the informstion you want distributed. (Maybe Warrens elimination of billionaires is not a bad thing!😝😁). If conservatives are so upset with Facebook and Google, put your money where your mouth is, star your own companies and compete by communicating the truth.

        But I want someone in the White House that I would not mind having in my own house. And if the White House called me today and said Trump was going to be in my area and wanted to come into my house, I woukd tell them no F’in way. If I were a member of a team and was invited to the WH for recognition, I would quitely not show up.I want to be miles from this man. He personally stands for everything I despise.

        I dont have any problems with most of Trump’s policies. I have no use for the man. Respect is earned and he does nothing to earn anyone’s respect. I had no respect for H Clinton since the only reason she did not divorce Bill was to promote her own career. I respected Jonhson and that is why I voted for him. He was genuine, you saw what he was and he had executive experience without all the crap that Trump and Clinton brought.

        But this attitude got me in trouble all the way from when I was in the service to the day I retired.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 20, 2019 7:03 pm

        I think this is pretty much where I am at with social media censorship.

        If you censor, you are a publisher and you are responsible for your content.

        It you wish to be a public forum, and have the protections afforded public forums you may not censor

      • dhlii permalink
        August 20, 2019 7:14 pm

        “He personally stands for everything I despise.”


        I understand that you do not like Trump’s style.

        But the things that YOU “stand for” and those Trump stands for are much closer most any one else posting here.

        There is this claim that Trump is trying to “divide” the country.

        How so ? I do not see that.

        Absolutely he is attacking left wing nuts.

        But left wing nuts are not the country – they have “divided” themselves.
        All Trump does is points out – these people have really nuts ideas.

        If that is “division” – that is fine with me.

        I certainly do NOT want the ideas of the left presumed to be broadly supported.

        How do Trump’s remarks “divide” us ?

        At most they call attention to the fact that it is the left is trying to foist on us things that are bad ideas and most of us do not want.

        AOC, Cummings, etc Attack Trump.

        Trump attacks back. That is politics.

        But when you claim that AOC or Cummings or … can not be criticised because they are black or brown or gay or muslim or ….

        THAT is dividing us.

        When you claim that facts are racist – you are the one looking to divide.

        Cummings AOC etc are free to use whatever tactics they wish.

        What surprises me is that neither you nor those on the left see through them.

        Yet myriads of the unwashed “deplorables” have no problem telling the difference between political tactics and actual racism.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 20, 2019 6:54 pm

        The media is biased. There is nothing wrong with that – so long as we grasp it.

        The person who disturbed Cuomo at a resturant is no better than those on the left who disturb republicans trying to eat.

        Cuomo reacted much worse than Tucker Carlson or Sandra Huckabey.

        I do not care what the media covers – so long as I understand their biases.

        It is not important that I know every goof thing that Trump supporters do.

        It is important that I understand that the media coverage does NOT accurately reflect what is going on in the world.

        Even when the media is not politically biased, they still adhere to the “if it bleeds it leads” approach.

        We will hear about every mass shooting.
        We will not hear about every time a crime is thwarted by someone with a gun.

        I am OK with that. But it is important for me to know that the news is NOT showing me the world as it is.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 20, 2019 6:57 pm

        “Trump is a bizarre character”

        If Trump did not exist – he would have been created.

        The escalating lunacy of the left absolutely ensures that Trump or someone like him was going to emerge.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 20, 2019 7:00 pm

        For the most part Trump does not actually try to “screw over” anyone.

        He does “punch back” twice as hard. But mostly he is not just fixated on his supporters.

        He really is striving to “Make America Great Again”.
        For everyone.

        Many of us do not like what he is doing, and do not beleive that will make america great again. But that is a disagreement on what will work, not on what Trump’s intent is.

      • August 20, 2019 8:25 pm

        Very interesting how we agree on many things and how different we are concerning Trump.
        I support and defend Trump on policy and div orce myself from Trump the person
        You seem to defend Trump the person and divorce yourself from many of his policies.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 21, 2019 8:30 pm

        We agree that Trump is an asshole – that is about personality.

        There is still a difference between asshole and racist.
        The former is supposed to be much more subjective than the other.

        Making moral judgments of others is still dangerous. It is something all of us should do carefully. When you make a false claim of immorality about another – you are immoral.

        Call Trump an Asshole. Few will disagree.

        Call him a racist – and you better have compelling evidence. Subjective judgment is not sufficient. Further Call Trump racist on the basis of expressions that tens of millions of people share – and even if your are right – you have just alienated tens of millions of people.

        Everyone keeps asserting that Trump is divisive.

        The entire ideology of the left is divisive. Divisiveness is inherent ideologically in all permutations of leftism.

        Every time you accuse Trump and transitively tens of millions of people of racism, sexism, homophobia, unless there is perfect overlap – you grow the number of people who will never vote for you. Trump pisses over relatively narrow groups – and infact that is a part of what we are constantly fighting over. Trump says some people on both sides are “good people” and the left transforms that into Trump supports white supremecy. trump says Baltimore is rat infested – and he is racist. Trump says that MS-13 is rapists and criminals – and somehow that is all hispanics are evil.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 20, 2019 6:24 pm

        “Public housing” is one of the better proofs that government can not do anything competently.

        Most public housing is worse than the places provided by “slumlords”. It is dangerous, it is piss poorly maintained.

        And it is “infested” with violent criminals and drug dealers.

        What is not – will be in very short time.

        Everything that government has ever done to address this has failed.

        Big public housing like “cabrini green” have been disasters, smaller complexes like in my town are horrible.

        For a while “section 8” was touted as a great success – and very early it was.
        But after they cherry picked the people who were going to succeed no matter what, “section 8” because a “conveyor belt” to transfer the criminals and drug dealers in public housing complex into functioning working class minority neighborhoods – destroying them.

        Nor is this unique to the US – The UK and EU have see all the same problems.

        It is extremely difficult for private charities to effectively help people.
        Government does far worse.

        While at the same time – we have watched as – without the slightest intention of charity, free markets have taken whole nations out of abject poverty

        We are all cautiously watching China and hong kong right now.

        Hong Kong and Singapore were impoverished fishing villages 75 years ago.
        The standard of living in Sinapore and Hong Kong is HIGHER than the US.

        Watching protests in HK we should remember that aside from their political system and race these people are just like us – maybe even wealthier. We are not watching poor people in the USSR revolting. This is as 1.7M people in NYC decided to protest DeBlassio, or Trump.

        Recently I watched “Hooligan Sparrow” on Netflix. You can watch that just to get an idea of what ordinary life in mainland china is like today. Both in the cities and for farmers.

        In 1973 China was poorer than Africa. Today they are at the bottom of the first world.
        No charity was involved in this. Further it all happened DESPITE a horrible government,
        It all happened because that government choose to turn a blind eye to free markets “At the margins”. again I recommend reading Ronald Coases “how china became capitalist”
        Because it is the story of what works to raise people from abject poverty.

        And the answer is that it happens automatically so long as government stays out of the way.

        The rate of improvement in india has been slower. But much the same has happened in India in the past 50 years.

        Regardless, we know how to fix poverty. The hard part is “letting go”, allowing people to do it themselves, and just staying out of their way.

        Trying to help them does not work.

        In 1938 Black families had the same attributes as white ones.
        There were few single parent families.
        Levels of education were nearly that of whites
        Schools were nearly on par with whites,
        unemployment was Lower than whites.
        Crime rates for blacks were much the same as whites.

        There were problems – many – black and white did not graduate from HS.
        Schools were not particularly good.
        Black Schools had very little resources.
        But the quality of education was still not that different between races.

        Today after all our efforts to “fix” things
        Things are worse.

        Jim Crow was horrible and no one wants to go back.
        But the so called “welfare state” while good intentioned, really is systemically racist.
        If not intentionally so.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 20, 2019 6:25 pm

        If a statement of fact is true – it is not racist. PERIOD.

  18. dhlii permalink
    August 20, 2019 5:24 am

    The majority of people violently killed in the US are murdered by people they know.
    Of those who are killed by strangers 1/3 are killed by police – atleast 3.5/day.
    That is far more than mass killers.

    I saw a recent Tweet of the killings at Kent State, with a caption to the effect of
    We should not trust government with assault weapons.

  19. dhlii permalink
    August 20, 2019 5:34 am

    So Libertarian humor×900

  20. August 20, 2019 12:08 pm

    Having problems again with Word Press. Hopefully this only show once as it says atuff post, does not and I have to change one word to get it to post. Then a few minutes later they both show up.

    Liberal, Conservative, Libertarian, I think everyone should be concerned as to the power these companies have.

    Yes Dave, I know you have no problem with this and you willbsay no votes were cha nged or influenced by their actions. However, I find this more concerning than a few votes that might get changed in a handful of pricincts.

    • Priscilla permalink
      August 20, 2019 7:00 pm

      Ron,I saw this today, and it is really frightening. I was going to post it, but you beat me to it!

      So I’ll post this video by Tim Pool, a independent journalist, who supported Bernie Sanders in 2016, but has become disenchanted with the far left (just as Epstein has become disenchanted with the Clintons), is well worth the 25 minutes it takes to watch the whole thing. Pool himself is being “de-ranked” by You Tube and no longer gets as many views as he once did, despite the fact that he is not a conservative.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 20, 2019 7:30 pm

        The ONLY problem I have with what Google, FB etc are doing – is that they are supposed to be a “neutral public platform”.

        What they are doing is called “persuasion”, and I do not care if the Russians, the Koch’s Sorros, … are doing it. I do not care how much money who is spending,
        I do not care if it is dark money or in the sunlight.

        I would entirely abolish the FEC or limit them exclusively to voter fraud and bribery.

        If Trump’s money is coming from people you do not like – that is the medias job to feret out.

        If Biden’s money is coming from people I do not like – the same thing.

        Neither of us should be allowed to decide who can contribute to who – nor how much.

        IF Google wants to “influence” the election – fine. But if they do so by censoring and filtering, then they are no longer a neutral public forum and should not be treated that way.

        We have repeatedly discusses what the “rules” for TNM should be.

        Those are Rick’s business. If Rick wants to limit long posts, or multiples or links to videos or libertarians, or whatever – that is his right – this is his forum. But no one would then pretend it is a neutral platform.

        This article by Andrew McCarthy is excellent.

        What is increasingly clear is that throughout and after the 2016 election the US and US IC, and Obama knew EXACTLY what Russia was doing.
        They knew damn well it was not unusual.
        They knew they were not CONSEQUENTIALLY and successfully attacking the actual voting institutions.
        They knew that the attempts to “influence” the election were inept and innefective.

        And most importantly long before the election they knew that Trump was NOT colluding with Russia.

        Right now Social Media is trying to thwart China’s efforts to “sow disinformation” about HK.

        That is BAD not good. I have zero problems with China engaging in their own social media efforts. It is not “social medias” job to police content by supressing what they disagree with.

        It is the job of the press and the citizenry to expose lies – not to supress them.

        Does anyone think that a massive social media campaign by China would significantly change impressions ?

        One of the problems with censorship is that there is a presumption that those doing the censoring know what is true and what is not, and are not biased themselves and that supressing purportedly false is better, and that people are too stupid to know what is true and what is not. If that is the case – then government by the people is not possible.

      • Priscilla permalink
        August 20, 2019 8:49 pm

        Dave, I agree with much of what you say, but I do not think that the huge tech platforms like Google, FB, YouTube (same company as Google), and Twitter should be allowed to operate with immunity from defamation liability. If they can’t be sued for the lies and slanders that they encourage, or for the censorship that they clearly use (such as blocking Mitch McConnell for tweeting video of the mob outside of his house threatening to kill him, but allowing the members of the mob to tweet death threats), then they should be regulated or broken up as monopolies.

      • August 20, 2019 11:49 pm

        Priscilla hopefully the Prager U case will take care of it. But who knows with John Roberts being the swing vote on SCOTUS. He may say that he supports Prager U but ruling in their favor would look political and he does not want the court to appear political, so the ruling is 5-4 against PU.

        And breaking them up will never happen. The precedent seems to be set by Microsoft years ago when they almost gave operating systems and software to computer manufacturers and 90% of all computers came out of the factory already loaded with Microsoft programming. They basically ran anyone like companies that made software like Word Perfect and other spreadsheets out of business. Congress investigated to make themselves look like they were doing something, but basically did nothing and Microsoft kept dominating the industry until smart phones came along.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 21, 2019 10:38 pm

        I do not think Prager is going to win, I think the issue will be moot.
        Trump’s recent EO is directing the FTC and FCC to make rules based on the DMCA.

        The rule is trivial. I content provided is entitled to Section 302 protection from liability only if they conform to exactly the same constraints as government with regard to censorship.
        If they do not, then they are a publisher and not a neutral public platform and they are not entitled to section 302 protection.

        I suspect the court will split, but I do not think that SCOTUS will find a problem, and to the extent they do, then they are likely to scuttle section 302.

        There is not an interpretation of the constitution that allows Section 302 to be constitutional, but bars FCC/FTC from putting Section 302 to effect through regulation.

        My preference would be to strike section 302 – but that is not going to happen.

        Not only do I think this will not have a problem with SCOTUS, but I suspect it will be a 7-2 or even a 9-0 decision.

        This is not a “hard choice”. SCOTUS will not be being asked to allow FCC/FTC to decide whether Google or FB can censor. They will be deciding if Social media can both censor and be permitted protection for liability for what they allow published.
        They are not going to get that.

        We have centuries of law regarding what and how the government can censor.
        I do not agree with those – but it is irrelevant – Social Media has acted far outside of them.
        To SCOTUS this is not “punishment”, it is just presenting Social media with a choice – between being a neutral public platform with very very few permissible basis for censorship, or being a publish – where you are free to choose as you wish but have responsibility for what you publish.

        This is not going to be the FTC or FCC deciding, it will be the courts.
        And again they have decades of case law on government censorship to guide them.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 21, 2019 8:36 pm

        We are now getting into “Walter Block” anarchocapitalist areas.

        In a “perfect world” I would just eliminate defamation law.

        People would place less credibility in defamatory remarks if they understood there was no consequence to defamation.

        The existing defamation laws make it easier to beleive false public statements.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 21, 2019 8:38 pm

        My prefered solution to Social Media would be to see people leave google, etc.

        It would not take much for tech giants to reconsider. Small losses in market share are worth billions.

      • August 21, 2019 8:42 pm

        So how does one use something other than Google. My computer just automatically boots up Google Chrome.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 22, 2019 2:22 am

        You have to make your own choices as to what constitutes supporting google.

        Brave is an open source browser – it is based on the Chromium Web Rendering engine,
        you can migrate from Chrome to Brave trivially preseving passwords, links and settings.

        Brave has built in ad and tracker blocking. It upgrades connections to secure connections wherever possible.

        But it is still based on the Chrome render engine – which is open source – Google supports it, but it is still open source.

        There are other choices if you do not want anything at all from google.

        I am not looking to run my life google free.
        I am looking to send a message.

        I use Brave – I have also found it to be faster and less of a memory pig – mostly because of the crap it filters out.
        But I can not get streaming services – netflix, amazon, hulu to run on Brave, and for reasons I do not understand at all, I can not get TNM to log me in and keep me logged in properly on anything but chromium, not brave, not chrome, not any other browser.

        Vimeo is an alternative to youtube.
        But it is hard to live without Youtube.
        There are choices other than Vimeo.
        I tried one as was quickly reminded – there are real nutcases out there.
        But the problem with most is they are not popular yet.
        Regardless, I cut back on my use of Youtube, but I have not gone cold turkey.

        DuckDuckgo is an alternative to Google’s search engine
        I have been using it for a couple of years.
        Once in a blue moon – usually only to prove to myself how politically skewed google is, I actually try google again. On the rare occasions I use windows machines I usually end up with Bing by default.

        Except for the political bias – google is still the best search engine.
        But not by enough that I care.
        ddg works fine for me.
        There are other choices too
        but DDG is probably the largest “safe” alternative
        and DDG does not track you.

        You can use proton mail instead of gmail.

        Or if you have web hosting of your own domains – I have about 20 domains.
        You can create as many email accounts as you want in each domain.

        There are several alternatives to facebook and twitter.
        I have accounts on all of them.

        I also have a facebook account in a “fake” name.
        I use that exclusively as a login ID for website all over the place.
        I do not post on face book,
        I do not read things on Face Book.
        The only one who posts on or uses my real facebook account is my wife.

        Twitter is a cesspool. Everynow and then I get back on it briefly.

        But way too many people I know – some personally, many famous post juvenile and stupid stuff on twitter.

        Trump is far from the most offensive person on Twitter,
        He is far from the most offensive famous person on twitter.

        I can live without twitter.

        Anyway, I am slowly increasing my efforts to negatively impact social media giants whose conduct bothers me. I do not do so by leaving them.
        I do so by diminishing my dependence on them.

        will they notice ? Not if I am doing this alone. But the more of us do this, the more they will notice.

        And I will guarantee you even the most liberal hedge fund managers will tell them to stop the censorship if there is even a few percent drop in revenues due to a user reaction to their conduct.

      • Priscilla permalink
        August 20, 2019 8:52 pm

        I just saw that you had already posted a Prager video that pretty much says the same thing, so maybe we do agree!

      • dhlii permalink
        August 21, 2019 8:39 pm

        In “libertopia” – Prager is wrong – we should just get rid of defamation laws.

        In the real world – Prager is right.

  21. dhlii permalink
    August 20, 2019 11:46 pm

    The most interesting parts of this are about 2/3 of the way in.

    Spoiler alert – while getting good data on mass shootings in the developing world is nearly impossible. Even doing the job badly – ranks the US 61st in the world in per capita mass shootings – with several european countries – where the data is excellent and where gun control is prevalent with higher – sometimes MUCH higher rates of mas shootings.

    Some developing countries – where data is very difficult to acquire have rates as much as 60 times that of the US – and better data will only increase those numbers.

    • August 21, 2019 12:00 am

      Figures don’t lie but liars can figure. So can statistics!

      But what difference does it make what happens in other countries? To me not a damn thing.

      If we can do one thing that will stop one shooting at a school, mall, etc and it does not trample on rights, I am for it.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 21, 2019 10:40 pm

        “If we can do one thing that will stop one shooting at a school, mall, etc and it does not trample on rights, I am for it.”

        Everyone is in agreement with you on that.

        But we have no evidence that such a thing exists.

      • August 21, 2019 11:10 pm

        Well maybe if every politician would stop pointing fingers and stop using shootings as a way to divide and get elected, maybe one small step at a time can takes place that changes some situations so they dont happen.

        But I dont think anything can come from a compromise of the extreme positions held by both.parties. It is just too good of an issue that generates votes and that is the goal of politicians, not solutions. If you can energize your base using guns as an issue, why would you want the problem solved? If they solved the problem, it might mean some people might not be concerned enough to vote on less divisive issues and that politician may lose their career. And maintaining a career is goal #1.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 22, 2019 12:30 am


        There are a few things that might actually reduce mass shootings.
        Not a one of those stands a snowballs chance in hell.

        The odds of getting rid of gun free zones, or board open and concealed carry laws, or teachers being allowed to have guns in schools are about zero.

        The “ideas” of the left have all been tested one place or another.
        They do not work.

        That is not surprising. This is a problem that likely does not have an answer – atleast not today.

        No amount of work by politicians can change it when fixing a problem is beyond the power of government.

        I have criticised Rick for making this about emotion – you are doing the same.

        I am not opposed to looking for answers. I am not fatalist.

        But I do understand that it is damn near impossible for government to fix problems that are actually as small as this.

      • August 22, 2019 12:22 pm

        Hey, maybe all we need is the two sides to set down and talk, show some “friendly conversation” set an example to talk and not be controversial. Maybe one or two kids seeing that might not be moved to grab a gun and settle issues by shooting people. Maybe that would save 10-20 people just by talking. That could be step one without ever having government do anything except talk and show people communication is better than confrontation.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 22, 2019 2:28 pm

        Nearly all of the mass shooters that make the news are nuts. Actually mentally disturbed.
        These are not people who will change by sitting down and having a polite conversation.

        There are lots of ideas that could reduce our political divisiveness, none will effect the number of mass shootings.

        There are few places in the US where people rush to settle a dispute by grabbing a gun.
        Those are placed like Chicago and Baltimore.

        Yes, we all need to talk more – and listen more. But government has no role in that.
        And in fact government is a negative influence.
        So long as one side believes that if can impose its will on others through the use of government force – there is no foundation for talking.

        While we do not talk enough. Our most fundimental political problem is that we make all problems political – i.e. problems to be solve by government and force.

        Few problems are actually solved by force. And the more you use force to solve problems the larger the resistance you build.

        Even if not well expressed the current political turmoil – our divisiveness is about limited government. Not Trump. It is not even really about left-right, except that at this moment the proponents of bigger government are primarily on the left.

        Big government is a self defeating proposition. If big government proponents get what they want they automatically create more opposition. They create the divisiveness we are bemoaning.

  22. August 21, 2019 12:45 pm

    I just figured out why Trump is interested in Greenland. There was an article today about scientist working in Greenland in short sleave shirts, walking on ice that formed millions of years ago, how large sections of glaciers the size of some states are bresking off and how warm it has been in Greenland. So Trump, the developer, sees Greenland the next opportunity for development. Another Trump Golf Course, Trump Greenland International.

    • Priscilla permalink
      August 21, 2019 9:23 pm

      Lol. Trump himself tweeted this (I told you he has a sense of humor about this stuff!)

      • dhlii permalink
        August 22, 2019 2:24 am

        And left wing nuts are going to take him literally,

        Regardless, is this a post from someone who has no sense of humor ?

    • dhlii permalink
      August 21, 2019 10:42 pm

      I think the US should try to buy Greenland.
      I think we will fail.
      I think that we could pay far more than anyone is talking about and it would be a good deal for us.

      But if it does not happen – it does not happen.

      But it is not “crazy”.

      • August 21, 2019 11:22 pm

        Why in the hell would we want a piece of land/ice that would only invigorate the left more than they are when more ice melted. And if the Democrats got control, our EPA could go batvshit crazy issuing regulations on Greenland. We are already $22T in debt. Where is the money coming from? W

        He’s nuts and didn’t have anything else to get his face on the news, so he comes up with this brainfart.

        I can see it now. Trump v Biden. Election 2020 Nuts v Senile.

      • Priscilla permalink
        August 22, 2019 8:42 am

        Ron, from Forbes:

        “The US has long considered Greenland to be a strategic location for military purposes. Less than 1,000 miles from the north pole, Thule Air Base on the island’s northwestern coast provides missile warning, space surveillance and space control US authorities.

        The airspace is also of strategic importance both to the military and for commercial flights. Increased Russian activity in the airspace has caused concern back in Denmark.

        But with the melting ice, the island’s vast quantities of metals and energy resources—believed to include iron ore, lead, zinc, diamonds, gold, copper, uranium and oil—are becoming more accessible than ever before. Local politicians want to exploit these resources with an eye on becoming fully independent from Denmark. Given that Denmark still supports Greenland economically to the tune of half its annual budget, the potential value of these resources is clear.

        And that’s exactly why Denmark isn’t going to entertain the idea of letting go of Greenland. That along with the fact that despite the economic reliance on Denmark, the population of 56,000 have a large degree of political autonomy.”

        So, I don’t think its a crazy idea. The Chinese are trying to build a airport for military planes there themselves. But, as Dave says, it’s unlikely to happen. But that doesn’t mean it’s crazy to try. We did buy the Virgin Islands from Denmark.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 22, 2019 2:10 pm

        Trump proposed doing it so its crazy – and it must be racist too.

  23. August 21, 2019 5:04 pm

    Well I wondef id MSNBC, CNN and others will break into their 24 hour coverage of Trump’s immigration policies and give some good news some coverage.

    They are doing about 5-7 surgeries a day on most all parts of the body including eyes for many who have escaped Venezuela.

  24. Anonymous permalink
    August 21, 2019 8:03 pm

    “Trump has snubbed an ally over some whacked-out fantasy to buy Greenland, told Jews who vote for Democrats that they’re disloyal, and referred to himself as the Chosen One. I eagerly await GOP loyalists saying with a straight face they think this is a stable, normal person.”

    • dhlii permalink
      August 21, 2019 11:06 pm

      Do you honestly beleive the relationship between the US and Denmark has suffered ?

      If you are so nuts that you are actually offended by people offering to trade money for property your not worth listening to.

      The world DEPENDS on that.
      You are not obligated to agree – and the Danes do not wish to sell.
      That is their right – just as we are free to offer.

      Any Dane who is insulted to learn that something of theirs – Greenland is of sufficient value that someone else would make an offer for it – is bat shit.

      I think this has zero consequence with respect to Denmark as an Allie – but if I am wrong – we do not want Denmark as an allie.

      Frankly I remain with George Washington – we should not be forming allegiances,, we should be doing what is in our nations interests, and what is right, and hoping that other nations join us because we are right, not because they are an allie.

      If Putin invades Denmark – do you think that Denmark is going to snub US aide because we offered to buy Greenland ?

      Can you tell me a single example where the US needs Denmarks suppport where the Danes will snub us that is actually a good idea ?

      Are the Danes going to tank NATO over this ?

      This entire line of reasoning is nonsense.

      I expect that Denmark will ALWAYS do what it thinks is in its best interests – whether the Danes like Trump or not. Nor do I want Denmark to do anything different.

      The Danes should NEVER screw their own people – to make the US happy.

      This is more of this nonsense that decisions should be made on emotion and personality not facts, logic and reason.

      “Churchill: “Madam, would you sleep with me for five million pounds?” Socialite: “My goodness, Mr. Churchill… Well, I suppose… we would have to discuss terms, of course… ”
      Churchill: “Would you sleep with me for five pounds?”
      Socialite: “Mr. Churchill, what kind of woman do you think I am?!” Churchill: “Madam, we’ve already established that. Now we are haggling about the price”

      Do you think that the Danish people would not think twice if Trump offered Denmark $2T for greenland ?

      There is no insult to an offer.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 21, 2019 11:17 pm

      This is Trump’s actual remark.

      “Where has the Democratic Party gone?” “Where have they gone where they are defending these two people over the state of Israel? And I think any Jewish people that vote for a Democrat, I think it shows either a total lack of knowledge or great disloyalty.”

      If there are jews offended by that – I am prepared to listen.
      But unless “anonymous” is jewish – you are doing the same thing Trump is – you are presuming to know the minds of jewish voters.

      Except that I suspect Trump is better at “mind reading” than you are.

      Further Trump’s remarks are far more tame than those of Tlaib – who seems to think that the US government is entralled to “the benjamins”.

      While I disagree with “the Squad” on Israel. I support their freedom to attack Israel.
      I think the members of “the squad” are quite obviously “anti-jewish” not just anti-Israel.
      But many (not all) of their remarks are just anti-Israel, and I am opposed to the “fake” cries of racism when directed at Trump and the “fake” cries of anti-semetism everythime one of the squad says something stupid about Israel.

      As to Trump’s remarks ? Jews are free to vote as they please. But Israel is a very important factor in the lives of many many many jews, and Trump is perfectly correct in noting that if Israel is important to you – you would be stupid to vote democrat.
      And there is absolutely nothing wrong in saying that.

      There is nothing wrong, because it is obviously true.
      But there would actually be nothing wrong if it was false.
      All misstatements of facts are not lies of moral failures.
      Especially when the conclusion that something is a misstatement is ideological itself.

  25. Anonymous permalink
    August 21, 2019 8:05 pm

    Hillary Clinton:
    “In the last 24 hours, the administration has announced:

    – They will seek the power to detain migrant children indefinitely

    – They won’t provide flu shots to families in detention

    Six children have already died, three in part from the flu.

    This is a recipe for more tragedy.”

    • dhlii permalink
      August 21, 2019 11:34 pm

      If you want more illegal immigrants to bring their children – treat them incredibly well.

      The New Colusus does NOT say – “bring me your huddled masses yearning to be free – and I will give them free healthcare, free meals, …”

      Every single family in ICE detention can leave anytime they wish.
      All they have to do is drop an asylum claim that they have less than a 2% chance of winning and ICE will fly them back to their country of origen.

      Contra the left and the press these people are not prisoners.
      They are not free to enter the US, but they are absolutely free to return home.

      We can debate all kinds of aspects of immigration policy, but we do not owe illegal immigrants anything – not flu shots, not food. We did not make them come here.

      We may CHOOSE to give them aide,
      But as a nations we owe ZERO positive obligations to anyone.
      If that were not true – we are done as a nation, positive rights are unsustainable.

      Are YOU entitled to a free flu shot from government ?
      Are you entitled to a bad and food and free healthcare from govenrment ?

      Why do immigrants have more rights than you do ?

      I support very near open boarders.

      I would be 100% behind a law that said anyone who wants can come here – so long as they have a sponsor who will meaningfully commit to supporting them if they need assistance.
      I think most of us would.

      That is ANYONE, no other questions. Let the sponsors do the vetting according to whatever criteria matters to them.

      I would support allowing 10’s of millions to just cross into this country as they please.
      I would revoke the laws that make hiring them a crime.
      I would allow them the same opportunity as the rest of us.
      But I will not support giving even ONE of them a single dime of public money.
      I do not support our government giving citizens public money, why would I support giving non-citizens public money ?

      I would sponsor immigrants myself, and I would give to groups that do.
      But that is MY choice.
      And I could make it as I please.
      I could choose to sponsor immigrants from china – as my daughter is from China, and that matters to me. Would that make me racist ?
      Regardless, you can sponsor whoever you please, and me who I please and Microsoft as it pleases, and churches as they please – my church sponsored several Muslim Burmese families

      But our government should NOT be making such choices.
      It should not be deciding whether Guatemalans or Asians get to come here.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 21, 2019 11:36 pm

      Dragging your family several thousand miles accross treacherous parts of the hemisphere and trusting to human trafickers and drug dealers – that is the recipe for tragedy.

  26. Anonymous permalink
    August 21, 2019 8:09 pm

    Alison Done:
    “Trump is so DESPCIABLE, DISGUSTING, DISGRACEFUL & DESPERATE that the ONLY question really becomes:

    WHY are We The People putting up with THIS???

    The protests in #HongKong should inspire all of us to MARCH NOW.”

    • dhlii permalink
      August 21, 2019 11:46 pm

      If you think Trump is as bad as Xi – why not go to China ?
      If you think Trump is as bad as Putin – why not go to Russia ?
      If you think Trump is as bad as Kim – why not go to North Korea ?
      If you think Trump is as bad as Madoru – why not go to Venezuela ?

      Protest Trump if that is what you want.

      But comparisons to Xi and Hong Kong are idiocy.

      I would note that While Trump’s public support of protestors in hong Kong is weaker than I would desire, He has said more in their support than Obama did of Iranians.

      Further Trump needs to say little about Hong Kong.

      Trump has put to screws to Xi and China.
      He brought the worlds attention to China.
      Trump’s “trade war” with China has served the protestors in Hong Kong AND
      the Protests in Hong Kong serve Trump.

      It is entirely possible that China will resort to the use of force.
      They will pay a very heavy price, if they do.

      I would further note that pretty much anything that happens with China – will help Trump.

      If Xi capitulates – either on trade or on Hong Kong – Trump will get credit.
      If Xi does not – Trump will be vindicated in taking a tough stand with China.

      Trump has been incredibly successful in marginalizing the Chinese government in the past 2 years.

      I have fought here with Ron over some of these issues.
      I think that Trump’s trade related actions are wrong.
      But I am not oblivious to the way they have played out.

      Trump’s handling of Trade is WRONG. But it is benefitijng him anyway.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 21, 2019 11:53 pm

      If you are opposed to Trump – you should be running as hard and as far as you can from China, as it is huge political win from Trump.

      There are inumerable outcomes – whether of the protests or the “trade war” almost all favor Trump.

      Anything short of a global recession that actually hurts the US substantially favors Trump.

      Any response to the protestors – favors Trump.

      To screw up Trump would have to turn his back on the protestors, and negotiate a bad deal with China – Like Obama did in Iran.

      Worse yet – there is evidence, and more important stories, that China is meddling in the 2020 election. That is a huge losing story for democrats.

      You have spent 2 years ranting about Russian interferance in the US election in 2016.

      In doing so you have given Trump a “chinese interferance” story to flog through 2020.

      Meanwhile Russia has its own problems.

      It is about even odds Putin does not survive to 2020.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 22, 2019 12:00 am

      Trump asked a question. It is a valid question.

      It is a question unrelated to immigration – that was just a gigantic “red herring”.

      Lots of jews have been PUBLICLY asking the same question.

      Trump showed up in Pittsburgh.

      Where was Clinton ? Farakahn ? TLaib ? AOC ? Pelosi ? …..

      And can we quit pretending that nuts are actually driven by ideology ?

      Or do I have to point out to you how the Dayton Shooter was falling of the left edge of the planet and murdered his sister along with alot of others ?

      These guys are NUTS.
      You are NUTS if you think their “ideology” matters.
      People have engaged in mass killing for centuries.
      They do it today – throughout the world.

      The US ranks 61st in Mass shootings per capita among 172 nations in the work over the past 40 years. 5 Europearn countries – including Germany, France, Norway and Sweden Rank higher. And those countries have strict gun laws.

      The people doing this are NUTS.

  27. Anonymous permalink
    August 21, 2019 8:14 pm

    Caron Rotz;
    “A reminder that the Tree of Life synagogue shooter murdered 11 Jews on Shabbos because of their congregation’s social justice work and support for immigrant rights. The President’s labeling of liberal Jews as disloyal is a validation of this kind of violence. It’s chilling.”

  28. Anonymous permalink
    August 21, 2019 8:15 pm

    American Footware Association:

    “77% of U.S. apparel, footwear, and home textile imports from China will be hit with Trump’s additional #tariffs on September 1.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 22, 2019 12:10 am

      So make up your mind.

      If you honestly beleive that you should NOT be free to buy footwear at the cheapest possible prices – then why are you opposed to Trump and Tarrifs ?

      Regardless, clothing is moving out of china – and has been for some time.
      There are many other countries that would are happy to produce US footwear cheap.

      And I fully expect that you will tell me that they are evil – just as you have told me the chinese are evil, for doing so.

      I am opposed to Tarrifs. But I am not stupid, or hypocritical.
      Just as Companies can move out of the US – they can move out of China.
      China has devalued the Yuan. That mitigates significantly the negative impact on US consumers. BUT it does so at the expense of the Chinese people.

      Knowing what is going on in China is a black art, but the best guess is that have serious debt problems, and the shadows of a recession that may spark even more broad political unrest.

      The protestors in Hong Kong know well that if Xi crushes them, the world will join Trump in sanctions on China.

      Are you going to be bemoaning the cost of Sneakers if Xi crushed the HK protestors ?

    • dhlii permalink
      August 22, 2019 12:11 am

      Why would anyone seriously opposed to Trump think that China is a good issue to bring up ?

  29. Anonymous permalink
    August 21, 2019 8:20 pm

    Logan Bayroff: “It is dangerous and shameful for President Trump to attack the large majority of the American Jewish community as unintelligent and ‘disloyal.’ But it is no surprise that the president’s racist, disingenuous attacks on progressive women of color in Congress have now transitioned into smears against Jews.”

    • dhlii permalink
      August 22, 2019 1:28 am

      Yes, any statement you do not like is dangerous, and …. racist.

      There are many jewish democrats who have said the same thing,

      Democrats are constantly claiming black voters should not vote republican – and republicans are claiming blacks should not vote democrats.

      It is the same thing. Are you calling those people out ?

      I guess trump’s adminisions to Xi to avoid using force in Hong Kong are … racist.

      Do you understand when you make everything racist – nothing is racist ?

    • dhlii permalink
      August 22, 2019 1:37 am

      “But it is no surprise that the president’s racist, disingenuous attacks on progressive women of color in Congress have now transitioned into smears against Jews.””

      Absolutely – Trump attacks “progressive women of color” – because they are progressives – aka idiots.

      I can find you women of color attacking them too – are they racist too ?

      Regardless, if this is a smear against jews – then the democratic party is a smear against all minorities. Trump is asking for Jews to vote against democrats – because Democrats do not care about Jews. You do not have to like that argument.

      I would further note that he has not “smeared” jews.

      If you are a jew who votes democrat despite the attacks of democrats on Israel.
      That is “disloyal” to israel. And if israel is not important to you as a jew – that is choice, not a smear. The only people that Trump’s argument addresses in any meaningful way is jews that care alot about Israel.

      Regardless, the criteria you are using to call something a “smear” would make all politics impossible.

      No one could ask for anyone else’s votes.

      If there are jews actually offended by Trump’s remarks – then his remark is going to drive them to vote against him.
      They do not need you to tell them to do so.

      Or don’t you think Jewish voters are smart enough to be able to make the decision as to how to weigh Trump’s remark themselves ?

  30. Anonymous permalink
    August 21, 2019 8:23 pm

    Bruce Bartlett:
    “For the zillionth time, Republicans don’t give a shit about the deficit. If they did they wouldn’t have decimated federal revenues with a POS tax cut. All they care about is slashing spending for poor people. Deficits are just an excuse.”

    • dhlii permalink
      August 22, 2019 1:40 am

      Do Republicans care about deficits ?


      Are Deficits a problem ?


      If the sole criteria for your vote is deficits and your only choice is a republican or a democrat, which should you vote for ?

      The republican – who really only cares about deficits when democrats are in power ?
      The democrat – who never cares ?

      You are screwed no matter what, but atleast you can shame republicans.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 22, 2019 1:43 am

      Tax cuts and deficits are interrelated and independent.

      I would be happy for a constitutional amendment that limited total taxes to 10% of GDP
      and max aggrate tax rates to 10% of total personal income.

      I would support that even if it ballooned the deficit in the short run.

      The problem – whether it is republicans or democrats is a SPENDING problem.

      It is NOT the governments money.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 22, 2019 1:48 am

      “Spending government money on poor people” has done what Jim Crow failed to do.

      It has made minorities into a dependent class. It has increased minority crime, it has decreased the quality of minority education, it has destroyed the minority family.

      Nothing that any “racist”, KKK member, …. has ever done has been as harmful to minoritues as the very things you are lauding here.

      Please tell me what “spending for poor people” has done them any good ?

      You are advocating for the most racist programs that the US has ever implimented.

      If you gave a damn about poor people you would do something to help rather than to chain them into government dependence and genocide.

  31. Anonymous permalink
    August 21, 2019 8:27 pm

    The IDIOT speaks:

    Donald Trump:
    “Denmark is a very special country with incredible people, but based on Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen’s comments, that she would have no interest in discussing the purchase of Greenland, I will be postponing our meeting scheduled in two weeks for another time….”

    • Priscilla permalink
      August 21, 2019 8:52 pm

      Roby, how are you?

    • dhlii permalink
      August 22, 2019 2:01 am

      So ?

      I have no problem with Trump going to Denmark.
      I have no problem with Trump not going to Denmark.

      I can not think of anything of consequence Trump needs to talk to Denmark about – including greenland

      I am sure if the price was high enough – the Danes would sell.
      And if not they are stupid.

      You seem to think there is something here.

      If Trump offered to buy danish office furniture would that be offensive ?

      I guess this is racist too ?

      The Danes must be part of some oppressed racial minority

      After all wasn’t the Dutch West India company instrumental in 17th, and 18th century african slave trade ?

  32. Priscilla permalink
    August 21, 2019 9:14 pm

    “The Chinese are currently working on creating monkey-human hybrids, in order to produce organs which would be compatible with humans (nice of them to work on a project that would save the lives of political prisoners, so that they could just rot in prison:

    According to the newspaper, the Spanish-born biologist Juan Carlos Izpisúa Belmonte, who operates a lab at the Salk Institute in California, has been working working with monkey researchers in China to perform the disturbing research.

    Their objective is to create “human-animal chimeras,” in this case monkey embryos to which human cells are added.”

    So far, they have only created a hybrid embryo, which they destroyed, but they apparently are still trying to figure out some of the issues that could arise from allowing a human-monkey hybrid to be born. For example, would human cells migrate to the brain, creating a monkey with human consciousness? Could monkey diseases/viruses mutate into ones that could affect humans? And so forth….

    The information comes from a Spanish scientist, who has traveled to China, to work on the project. Seems incredibly dangerous.

  33. Anonymous permalink
    August 21, 2019 10:44 pm

    More intemperate stupidity from the IDIOT:

    “Trump threatens Europe. “We’re holding thousands of ISIS fighters right now. And Europe has to take them. And if Europe doesn’t take them, I’ll have no choice but to release them into the countries from which they came. Which is Germany and France and other places.”

    • August 21, 2019 11:44 pm

      OK Anonymous, instead of just posting sound bites and tweets, how about giving us your thoughts on the issues you address.

      I will offer my thoughts. We captured 1000’s of ISIS fighters. They are now in camps held mostly in Syria.
      1. Do we stay for years and hold them in Syria?
      2. Do we enlarge our efforts in Gitmo and move them there?
      3. Do we bring them to America and hold trials and the ones found guilty placed in prison here?
      4. Do we do with them what we did with former Gitmo prisoners, only to have them back fighting like former Gitmo prisoners?
      5. Do we move them to camps in countries where we have permanent bases, like Germany, France, Japan and hold them there?
      6. Do we identify the country from which they came, return them to those countries and allow those countries to handle them in whatever form they find appropriate?

      Please add any alternatives I have not listed and tell us why you support what you do. I support #6.
      #1 I doubt Syria will want us there for years.
      #2. The left woukd have a shit hemmorrage if we reconstituted Gitmo.
      #3. Thevright woukd have the same reaction if we brought them here.
      #4. I an option, but we need to know we will be fighting them again or msy be their target here.
      # 5. I doubt citizens of developed nations would be willing to take ” our prisoners”.
      So that leaves #6..

      • dhlii permalink
        August 22, 2019 2:44 am


        You beat me too it.
        And my response was more tongue in cheek.

        Regardless, there is pretty much NOTHING Trump can say about what to do with these people that is not going to offend someone.

        Given that apparently many of them came from other countries in Europe, I personally think it is quite reasonable to return them to those countries – essentially they are the problem for those countries.

        But I am open to discussions.

        Maybe we should send them to South Bend Indiana

        I do not have a problem with turning them over to Assad.

        I want us out of Syria – completely.
        We never should have gone there in the first place.

        I want us out of Iraq, and Afghanistan.

        I do not care if that purportedly empowers Putin.

        I can not threaten Trump with not voting for him – because I am not anyway.

        But I wanted us out of these places faster than he has done.

        Defering to “the generals” in Afghanistan was a mistake.

        I am not isolationist. There are sometimes justifications for the use of US military power.
        We were right to take out afghaistan. While we did the job badly, having failed to take out the taliban when we had the chance. We also made a mistake in staying.

        Anytime we are actually justified in removing the government of a country.
        We are equally justified in leaving that country in chaos.

        However we should not have invaded Iraq, or gone to Syria or Libya.

        It is not our job to depose despots.

        It is our job to protect our country and to destroy governments that commit acts of war against us.
        We are not responsible for rebuilding them after wards.

        Further we are not any good at it.

      • Priscilla permalink
        August 22, 2019 3:03 pm

        Buy Greenland, and send them there!! 🙂

      • August 22, 2019 4:40 pm

        Well I know what I would do and it is the same, most severe punishment that a traitor receives, especially one that is a member of our military. If its good enough for our citizens that trun on America, its good enough for terrorist from other countries. And I would sleep good after it happened.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 22, 2019 7:57 pm

        As I understand it, these people were captured on the battlefield as combatants.
        They are the citizens or legal residents of other countries.

        If they were merely combatants we are obligated to return them to the country they legally reside in – which can figure out what it wants to do with them.

        If they have actually engauged in war crimes then the nation that captured them can address their “war crimes”. If they engauged in “crimes against humanity” then they are the problem of international tribunals.

        Because of the behavior of terrorists – no one really wants them.

        If Germany or France or … takes them back, there is a serious risk of acts of terrorism and hostage taking in an attempt to get them freed. And no one really wants them to be freed.

        In fact many of our european allies would be happy if the US locked them in Gitmo forever.
        That would nearly eliminate the risk of acts of terror targetting their countries as the means of liberating these people, and would allow the peoples and even governments of Europe to protest their encarceration and treatment at GITMO – even though no country really wants these people back on the streets anywhere.

      • August 22, 2019 8:29 pm

        But Roby pointed out the left has its anus all cramped up because Trump said he was going to give them back to their native country. Europe might be happy with them at Gitmo, but our fellow democrats would want them released.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 23, 2019 12:03 am

        What the left wants is Trump’s destruction.
        With respect to issues like these combatants – the only thing they have thought of is – how to paint whatever Trump said as crazy racist, hateful. ….

        They have not actually considered alternatives. If Trump had made a different choice – they would have attacked that.

        No they do not want to release these people.

        They do not even want to think about the actual issue or what should be done about it.
        All thought is about how to paint Trump badly. Nothing else.

        This is true in myriads of areas.

        Just look at the DNC debates. Not a single issue is serious.

        We are not going to forgive all student loan debt or have free college.

        It is just not happening. If any of these democrats were actually elected – and had a congress that would rubber stamp whatever they wanted – they would not do this – because they are not that stupid.

        They are not going to abolish ICE or CBP or decriminalize imllegal immigration.

        And they are also NOT going to talk about actually doing anything about immigration.

        They are opposes to Trump – but they are not for anything.
        They are not even for the status quo.
        To the extent they stand for anything it is “magic” and they are not even prepared to tell anyone the magic they are counting on.

        They are all talking about gun control – eliminating semi-automatic weapons – that is all handguns and nearly all rifles.

        But they are not going to do it. They do not have any real plan – including doing nothing.
        They are going to take meaningless, annoying harrasing and inefective steps incrementally pissing people off further and further – but they are not ever going to do anything.

        They stand for nothing – because their ideology is one gigantic cosmic disasterous self contradiction.

      • August 23, 2019 11:14 am

        Dave, so I am trying to get my hands around Trump’s personality.
        I watched the clip of the “chosen one”. Then I was told he was joking again. Then I watched it again. Well he and those who believe that have a very different view on a joke than I have or he has a sense of humor dryer than the Mojave Desert because I only saw a man talking fast, giving thoughts on issues and this came right out and he kept right on talking. Not a joke to me.

        However Greenland. I am going to say he may be acting like a millioaire businessman who walks in, tells his minions that I wsnt this done, go do it and they all walk out ready to follow instructions all while asking, what the “F” are we doing this for? And many businessmen.operate this way.

        So I will retreat from my “nuts” position on buying Greenland and there is a reason for it in some way. What that reason is escapes me, as well as millions of Americans because he is doing the same thing with Greenland as he would with his business.

        Many Americans are walking around asking “What the “F” does he want to buy Greenland for, another site for Trump Tower”?. And that is NOT PRESIDENTIAL LEADERSHIP!

      • dhlii permalink
        August 23, 2019 1:35 pm

        So you have watched the clip and still do not think Trump was joking.

        I do not understand how that is your perception.
        But I am not going to argue about your perception.

        I do not think it was “dry”, I think it was obvious. Je was behaving much as he did in the clip from one of his rallies where he does the “I can act presidential, but that would be boring” skit. But I do not think you have to watch alot of Trump to grasp the joke.

        I would further note the Press, ran a few stories on that, and then moved on – even they know it was a joke.

        I would also suggest something else ALWAYS related to Trump stories – though it is a good idea overall. DO NOT trust the media reporting – especially when they tell you what trump said or did, without video or actual quotes or only with small excerpts.

        In nearly all the “Trump did something outrageous” stories, there are paragraphs of discussions of what Trump said – telling us exactly what it meant. But often there is not even a short out of context quote. There is never the full remark, particularly not with context.
        When discussing tweets – we rarely get the actual tweet.

        The press does not beleive we are capable of making judgements on our own.

        Regardless when straight news reporters are telling you what you should think and not telling you what the facts are – things are very wrong.

        If you really think Trump was serious – then the only conclusion I can see is that you must conclude that Trump is delusional – in a way that actually meets the 25th amendment.

        Though I would note – if that is actually true – there is going to be mounting evidence of that – not in offensive remarks, but in actually delusional remarks, and not in small or arguable delusions, but in great ones.

      • August 23, 2019 5:32 pm

        Sorry Dave I watched it again. There was notong humorious in his comments!

      • dhlii permalink
        August 23, 2019 8:00 pm

        Humor “ha Ha” arguably not – though it is not much different from his “boring president” schtick from his ralies, which is definitely funny.

        Humor as in pres baiting – absolutely, and it worked.

        Further the line is delivered in such an obviously and deliberately highlighted way that there really are only two possibiliies.

        He actually thinks god spoke to him.

        Or he is joking.

        There is not some middle ground.
        There is not even just being an arrogant prick – though he was being a bit self important.

        He was quite literally “chosen” to deal with this problem.

        If you really think that Trump thinks he heard the voice of god directing him.
        Then it is time for the 25h amendment as it actually is supposed to work.
        Further if that is the case – there will be lots more examples – not merely of offencsive behavior but of behavior indicating hallucinations.

        Disagreeing with someone, does not make them crazy.

        And the only choices here are crazy or humourus

        I would further not this story did not even last a full news cycle – because most everyone understood it was humor.

        Including those falsely reporting it.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 23, 2019 1:48 pm

        I just do not get the Greenland outrage.

        I am not going to jump onto the “We must buy Greenland” bad wagon.

        But it is NOT a bad idea. Approx. 3-4 times in the past we have tried to buy it before.
        Harry Trump tried to buy it and ended up with the Virgin Islands instead.

        The Danes do not appear to want to sell.
        That is OK too.

        What I do not understand is why the fuss ?

        What is wrong with Trump trying to buy Greenland ?

        Yes, Trump tweeted out the meme somebody put together with the giant golden Trump tower on Greenland. I thought that was brilliant of him, and self efacing.

        The actual reasons for wanting greenland are strategic.

        Alaska is our only connection to the Arctic. Russia has substantial borders on the arctic. They are actively seeking to make it their private domain. Canada and Denmark are not up to standing up to Russia. The US already has more personel in Greenland that the Danes do. Our early warning system for much Russian malfeasance depends on Greenland.

        Further there are indications that Greenland might be a significant source of “rare earths”
        What though not as “rare” as the name implies, are still only found a few places – none of which are in US control, and Rare earths are a strategic resource.

        Yes, there is a little bit of the businessman in Trump.

        Greenland would be an asset to the US – so why not buy it ?

        Harry Truman was a businessman at one Time. so is Trump.

        Trump did what business people (and even ordinary people) do when they want something that someone else owns – he offered to buy it.
        You do that dozens of times a day.

        Governments rarely do that – they generally use guns and try to take it.

        To me this whole greenland thing is a total non-issue.

        We should buy it if we can. But the Danes do not wish to sell.
        Unless they change their mine – end of story.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 23, 2019 1:52 pm

        Businesses do not do things that are “nuts”.

        There are many reasons for the US to buy greenland – but mostly that is just an issue about how much we should be willing to pay.

        Regardless, I do not understand all the outrage over Greenland.
        I do not understand why you or anyone else thinks it is “nuts”.

        If it ever becomes serious, there will be a debate over the “price”.
        Personally I think it is much more valueable to the US than to Denmark.
        But I do not think we are going to have that discussion.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 23, 2019 1:59 pm

        I do not know if the golden Trump tower on Greenland was done by a supporter or Someone on the left. But Trump’s use of it is brilliant.

        If you actually Think Trump wants to put a Trump Tower on Greenland – you are the one who is nuts. I do not think there is a Trump Tower anywhere in the world with less than a million people and I mean in the city it is in. There is not enough high end tourism in all of greenland to support a Trump tower. There is not enough people in all of greenland.

        Greenland is going to be sparsely populated forever. But it does have strategic military value as an outpost on the Arctic, as a means of constraining Russia, as a means of protecting the US. I doubt as an example the Danes would currently allow the US to place ABM’s on greenland, yet it would be an excellent site for ABM’s to protect against Russian ICBM,s

    • dhlii permalink
      August 22, 2019 2:29 am

      Again So ?

      What do you want to do with these people ?

      Send them to Gitmo ?

      Release them into the mideast ?

      Send them to Los Angeles ?

      Execute them ?

    • dhlii permalink
      August 22, 2019 2:49 am

      Speaking of idiocy.

      Yes, this is a satire site.
      But sometimes the satire is so true.

  34. dhlii permalink
    August 22, 2019 12:59 am

  35. dhlii permalink
    August 22, 2019 3:19 am

  36. dhlii permalink
    August 22, 2019 3:26 am

  37. dhlii permalink
    August 22, 2019 4:50 am

    Wasn’t someone here constantly posting Joe Walsh attacks on Trump ?

  38. dhlii permalink
    August 22, 2019 4:55 am

  39. dhlii permalink
    August 22, 2019 4:08 pm

    An execellent Rubin Report with a Black NRA advocate mostly covering the actual facts regarding guns.

  40. dhlii permalink
    August 22, 2019 4:43 pm

  41. August 22, 2019 7:12 pm

    When I worked. at the hospital, there were many stories about those cominv for treatment, many high on drugs or with mental conditions.

    Had someone wslked in and said they “were the chosen one” cosideration for a complete mental evaluation would have been considered.

    This guy is totally off the wall. Cant wait until tomorrow to hear what he comes up with next.
    Antichrist maybe?

    • Anonymous permalink
      August 22, 2019 8:09 pm

      President Trump yesterday joked about giving himself the Medal of Honor: “I wanted one, but they told me I don’t qualify … I said, ‘Can I give it to myself anyway?’”

      • August 22, 2019 8:33 pm

        That doesnt count if he ” joked” about that. People, even politicians, say things all the time joking about different things.

        I want the “serious” comments that are off the wall.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 22, 2019 11:42 pm

        “I think one thing that should be distinguished here is that the media is always taking Trump literally. It never takes him seriously, but it always takes him literally. … I think a lot of voters who vote for Trump take Trump seriously but not literally, so when they hear things like the Muslim comment or the wall comment, their question is not, ‘Are you going to build a wall like the Great Wall of China?’ or, you know, ‘How exactly are you going to enforce these tests?’ What they hear is we’re going to have a saner, more sensible immigration policy.”
        Peter Theil.

        But others have noted the same thing.

        I would further note that The left did the same with Obama.

        In fact we all tend to take the politicians we like seriously but not litterally.
        And those we do not literally but not seriously.

        Many of the ‘offensive’ remarks of Clinton, Obama, leading democrats were not meant to be taken literally

        Such as the deplorables comment or the clinging to guns and bibles. or taking a gun to a knife fight or punching back twice as hard.

        The problem with the remarks of most democrats – is they are awful whether litteral or merely serious.

        Fundamentally the left hates PEOPLE who do not support the IDEAS, while the right hates IDEAS, and attacks PEOPLE for supporting them.

        Look at the public conversation:

        “Trump is a racist”
        Sometimes followed by some weak evidence to support that.
        Quite often the purported evidence reguires enormous amounts of mind reading to reach a conclusion like racism.
        But it is easy for the left to jump to racism – if you disagree with their ideas you are vile, and presumptively racist.

        The right has gone after Obama, Clinton – Nearly the entire 2020 Democratic lineup for “Socialism”. We can debate how strongly that characterization applies – though many 2020 democratic candidates have openly embraced socialism.

        The world does not fit anything perfectly – and obviously you can find counter examples.
        Still there is a pattern.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 22, 2019 11:43 pm

        Even the article on the Hill grasped that Trump “Joked”.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 22, 2019 8:11 pm

      Watch the actual clip. It comes off entirely different in context.

      Trump was being playful, and he was goading the press.

      To an extent he was suggesting Chosen by god.
      To an extent he was suggesting chosen by voters.
      To an extent he was suggesting – I am the person was was president at the time this problem had to be dealt with.

      Regardless, you can like the way he speaks, or not.
      But he was clearly not delusional.

      • August 22, 2019 8:54 pm

        Dave, there was NOTHING playful in that comment. He was 100% serious. He said it without thinking or hesitation. He believes what he said. And to most people who have just one religious blood cell in their veins amoung millions, “Chosen One” has only one meaning.

        John 15:16 – Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and [that] your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.

        Trump truely believes God chose.him to take on China!

        I have called him obnoxious, assinine, asshole and other adjectives, but I am now in the mentally unstable category. Right now Delusions of Grandeur to start.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 23, 2019 12:13 am

        Find and play the clip.
        I did.

        I would also suggest you find clips of Trump’s at his rallies. There is one a couple of minutes long of Trump pantomiming “acting presidential”.

        When you get past the picture of Trump that NYT and MSNBC paint – he is actually having a great deal of fun as president. And Trump clearly does not take himself seriously.

        Sometimes Trump is somewhat Serious. I think what he says and does regarding China is very meaningful. I do not think it is the “truth”. But I think it is very calculated.
        He is saying what he wants whoever his audience is to hear. That audience might be Xi, not the press. Further I think Trump is incredibly good at playing different factions off against each other. He is working Asia incredibly. We were told that if we did not join TPP we were going to be 2nd fiddle in Asia. Trump owns asia, He has the vietnamese eating out of his hand, the Japanese, the South Koreans. He has them all playing against each other and for him. Today the US is the dominant power in Asia – not China, and we are not part of the TPP.

        But at other times he is incredibly playful – Like Reagan’s mcrophone test about nuking the USSR. Only Trump does it all the time.

        Yes, he is absolutely self obsessed – everything is about him. He is the focus of his world.
        But that does not make everything he says serious.
        He is often the jester in his own world.
        Absolutely he loves being in front of the camera and he plays for it.
        but that is exactly it – he plays for it.

        regardless, watch the clip. It is very tongue in cheek.
        He knew exactly what he was doing. He was playing the press.

      • August 23, 2019 11:18 am

        Like I said, I watched it. Not even a flicker.of a smile. Guess I worked for to many egotistical assholes that acted just like Trump that were not joking to find humor in his comments.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 23, 2019 2:06 pm

        People generally do not smile or laugh at their own jokes.

        I do not even think this is a close call. He clearly went “deadpan” – pretty much exactly the shift he does when he does his “Boring presidential Trump” riff in his Rallies.

        Regardless, if you want to try to treat this straight.

        There are two “chosen” options. Chosen by the people – in that sense Every president is the one chosen to have to deal with whatever comes up. That is just a tautology.

        The other is chosen by god. Do you really want to have that discussion ?

        One of the big problems with the left – is they can not distinguish between

        “I disagree” and
        You are …. evil, crazy, racist, delusional, ….

        If you are making moral judgements of another person – regardless of the basis,
        you had better be right, because if you are not the moral cost is yours.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 23, 2019 2:34 pm

        People generally do not smile or laugh at their own jokes.

        I do not even think this is a close call. He clearly went “deadpan” – pretty much exactly the shift he does when he does his “Boring presidential Trump” riff in his Rallies.

        Regardless, if you want to try to treat this straight.

        There are two “chosen” options. Chosen by the people – in that sense Every president is the one chosen to have to deal with whatever comes up. That is just a tautology.

        The other is chosen by god. Do you really want to have that discussion ?

        One of the big problems with the left – is they can not distinguish between

        “I disagree” and
        You are …. evil, crazy, racist, delusional, ….

        If you are making moral judgements of another person – regardless of the basis,
        you had better be right

      • Priscilla permalink
        August 23, 2019 8:24 am

        Ron, he was joking! Watch the clip.

      • August 23, 2019 11:26 am

        OK two against one, he was joking. I still dont see it. But like I told Dave I worked much of my career where the CEO’s were much like Trump. I can desribe them, but not worth the time to do that. But after working 35+years in one location with two CEO’s that were sarcastic egotistical idiots that would say they were the ” chosen one” to do something difficult, my views on comments like that is much different than others would vew them.

      • Priscilla permalink
        August 23, 2019 12:51 pm

        Haha, didn’t mean to ‘gang up’ on you, Ron. Trump can be an asshole, and his sarcastic style of humor is not really funny.

        I was reading an article last night about how exhausting it is to try and follow the 24 news cycle in the age of Trump, and I completely agree that it is. I have seen many people simply stop following the news entirely, because they can’t stand the constant outrage. Both of my sons, who were very interested in politics, have basically checked out, and I’ve been tempted to do so myself.

        As we have all pointed out, at one time or another, there is plenty of blame on both sides. I was listening to an interview with Piers Morgan the other day, and he made a very good point. (He’s about as neutral as source as you could find these days : a Brit, who knows Trump quite well and likes him ~ he was the winner on the first season of “The Aprentice.”) He thinks that Trump is both sane and smart, but disagrees with him on many issues. Morgan considers himself a liberal, voted against Brexit, but now finds liberals to be completely intolerant and illiberal, both in the US and the UK.

        He said that the death of journalism is almost entirely at fault for the situation that we find ourselves in. He believes that, if Trump got praise when he was right, in addition to condemnation when he was wrong, he would be a very different president, and would, for political reasons, behave in ways that were politically advantageous for him. But, as it is, he is condemned no matter what he says or does, so there is no political upside for him to try and change. The only upside for him lies in fighting back, and condemning his enemies.

        It strikes me that this will be our politics going forward, on both sides, regardless of whether Trump wins or loses in 2020, and it will destroy our political system.

        Now, maybe we’ll survive as a democracy, but it will be a very different democracy than what we have known. And there is a real danger of authoritarianism taking the place of constitutionalism. Already, the Democrats have made it known that, should they win the Senate/House/Presidency, they will end the filibuster entirely, pass whatever laws they want, and pack the Supreme Court with activist justices.

        I don’t realistically see how we come back from that.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 23, 2019 3:40 pm

        Democrats get away with alot more in the way of political stunts than republicans.

        I vigorously oppose all the efforts to erode the senates anti-majoritarian rules that have existed for centuries. I oppose them whether democrats do it or republicans.

        With few exceptions though both parties threaten, Democrats always cross the line first.

        Had presidents been able ot put the justice of their choice on the court with a majority of the senate – SCOTUS would have between 7 and 9 extremely conservative justices.

        But more stupid here.

        The coming election is near certain to be about Turnout.
        SCOTUS is a major turnout issue for Social Conservatives.
        A major factor in Trump’s victory – atleast shoring up his support of social conservatives was his list of prospects and his promise to pick from it.

        Announcing before the election that you are going to change all the rules and stuff the supreme court is less likely to bring democrats to the polls that Republicans.
        And it is going to alienate those in the middle.

        I recently read a 2020 analysis – that I think was overly optomistic for Republicans – but it did make a very very important point. Trump has locked nearly everyone who voted for him in 2016. To the extent he has lost some neo-cons, he has won over many never trumpers.

        Put simply Trump does not have to work very hard to replicate his 2016 results.

        2016 was not the peak voter turnout year – but it was 0.4% shy of the highest voter turn out ever. Current signs are 2020 will NOT be a peak turnout year.

        To win the whitehouse Democrats have to get almost 2% higher turnout than in 2016 – that would blow away the record. Current indications are minority turnout will be lower than any recent presidential election AND that Trump will pick up about 8% more of the minority vote than any prior republican.

        The other big issue for 2020 is that 2016 had the largest 3rd party vote in a long long time.
        about 5%. Nearly all of that was libertarian.

        Contra what the left has claimed – if every stein voter voted for Clinton Trump would still have won.

        To make a difference Clinton would have had to get MORE than half of the libertarian vote – and that is not happening.

        If third party voting drops to historic norms and third party leaning votes split 60:40 republican as they normally do, Trump pick up something like 1.5M votes.

        Trumps biggest area of concern is among white women.
        They have to run out and 10% more have to vote against him than did in 2016

        Regardless, Democrats announcing reasons that republicans should get out and vote is stupid.

      • August 23, 2019 5:27 pm

        Priscilla, I have absolutely no problem with “ganging up” on me from you and Dave since you both address the issues and offer debate. Those that question you personality are the ones I have a problem with. And I dont mean like saying someone is not understanding or not reading/ hearing something said and saying future debate is fruitless, I mean other personal comments like ” if you cant understand x, then I cant help you”

        So to address Trump. Trump called Rubio “little Marco”. Bush “low energy Bush”. Now its “sleepy Joe”. And in my mind he is constantly demeaning people. I retired after working 20 years with a CEO that was about 10 years younger than I was. I was called Ron by everyone at the hospital. Superiors, equals, my employees. Except this ass. Everytime I saw him individually or in meetings, it was ” Well how is Ronnie doing today” or some such demeaning use of my Nick name only my mother ever used. And he did that with Don’s, Jon’s, and women with names he could make child like. It was his way to make others inferior, just like Trump.

        So I have no use for people like that and find no humor in anything they may say unless it is a true joke.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 23, 2019 7:36 pm

        Almost everyone that Trump has “labeled” – including everyone you cited, came after him first.

        I can not think of an instance where Trump has tossed the first insult.

        What distinguishes Trump is that his insults stick.

        I would agree with you that I do not want the president to “punch back twice as hard” – which BTW is a quote from Obama.
        But it is what we have.
        And of all the things I do not want in a president – it is far from the most important.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 23, 2019 7:51 pm

        My name is the same as my fathers.

        I have been called “little david”, “Davie”, “David Jr”. and an asortmet of other things.
        I was never especially happy with them.

        I worked for/with my father. At one point in an office with 50 people 6 were named david.
        That Guaranteed I was getting called “david Jr”. most of the time.

        A very tiny number of people have called me “junior” – aside from a sister who is a sociopath and unfortunately a member of the family, my mother fired all the rest.

        During the conflicts over my fathers estate, we received the some of the communications of the executor. This was a person who had been a freind – if not close. Who had worked for me, and knew that no one called me “junior”.

        Throughout his communications it was “junior” this and “junior” that.

        Mind you this is AFTER my father is dead, and when I am nearly 60 years old.

        Anyway – I am not aware of Trump doing this with freinds or co-workers.

        In fact I am not aware of many successful people who do not go to great efforts to call people who work with them whatever they want. It is a trait of good leaders.
        One I lack. I do not insult or demean people, but I do not remember their names either.

        Tell me that Trump is using these kinds of terms for freinds and subordinates and you have my ear.

        Back to the my executor thing above – After the executor called the police and falsely accused me of stealing, AND he and his lawyer told the court he has done no such thing and AFTER I produced the police report where the officer states that the executor reported to the police that I was stealing, After those things on occasions in court I refered to the executor and his lawyer as liars.

        When someone attacks you – especially falsely, they are no longer entitled to the respect we normally afford people.

        I wish as president that Trump would go there less. But it is still not a moral offense.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 23, 2019 6:38 pm

        How do we come back ?

        The route we are headed is towards a constitutional convention.

        Arguably enough states have asked for that that Congress could call for one now.
        But we are only a few states away from there being no arguably left.

        Anything is possible at a constitutional convention – but the most likely result is a plethora of amendments.
        A few of those could favor the left.
        We could get proposed amendments restricting campaign financing.
        Or trying to reverse CU.

        But the net impact will be positive.

        Term Limits are extremely popular.

        And remember – whatever comes from a constitutional convention must be ratified by the states. It will be easy to gets states to ratify limiting federal power.
        They are not going to agree to limit their own easily.

        I do not think that you can get a constitutional convention to change the rules the house and senate operate under
        But a trivial amendment would be to require that any changes the house or senate make to their own rules can not take effect until the next session. That would get rid of these nonsense attempts to get rid of the fillibuster.

  42. Priscilla permalink
    August 23, 2019 11:56 am

    Big, important news stories of the week:

    1)Trump is asked about rumors that he thinks buying Greenland would be a good idea ~ an idea that has been tossed around since the Truman administration~ and answers that he believes it would be, based on strategic military considerations, as well as Greenland’s wealth of natural mineral resources. (The press goes wild, mocking him for such a “stupid” idea)

    2) Trump explains that China became a much worse problem after the previous 3-4 administrations failed to stop Chinese currency manipulation, corporate espionage and intellectual property theft, and the targeting of American industry/jobs through exploitation of NAFTA loopholes. He jokes that he’s the “chosen one” who got stuck with the job. (The press goes wild, mocking him for believing that he is a god)

    3) Sean Spicer is announced as part of the umpteenth season of Dancing With the Stars. The press goes wild, ranting that he will politicize the serious, respected show. (Unlike Tom DeLay, Tucker Carlson, and Rick Perry, who were definitely not political figures)

    Totally unimportant news stories of the week:

    1) CEO gives major interviews on Fox and CNN, alleging that he was asked by the FBI to help get his ex-girlfriend, a Russian agent, into the Trump, Cruz and Rubio 2016 campaigns. Says that Peter Strzok was the agent who communicated with him.

    2) Joe Biden explains that the JFK, MLK and RFK assassinations occurred in the late 1970’s, forcing the Biden campaign to release a statement from his neurosurgeon, claiming that he does not have brain damage.

    4) Anti-Semites Ilhan Omar and Rashida Talib slam Israel for barring them from coming into the country of “Palestine” and promoting the BDS anti-Israel movement. (The press goes wild, praising them for their anti-Semitic bravery, and calls Netanyahu a puppet of Trump)

    • dhlii permalink
      August 23, 2019 3:08 pm

      Naddler just criticised boththe anti-semitism of Trump and “the squad”.

      I really do not like Nadler – but Kudos to him for treating both sides the same.

      In this instance I think he is wrong – but atleast not in a politically biased way.

      It is not anti-semitism to attack Israel. It is not anit-semitism to praise israel.
      It is not anti-semitism to question why jews are loyal to Israel.
      It is not anti-semitism to ask why they are not.

      Just as it is not racism to ask why minorities still support democrats who have F’d them over repeatedly.

      Trump is not anti-semetic – and only in the nonsensicaly world of the left could someone whose CLOSE son-in-law is extremely jewish, and whose daughter converted be “anti-semetic”

      My kids are both asian – if someone accused me of being racist against “yellow people”
      I would be frothing mad.

      “The Squad” is actually stupidly and ill informedly anti-semite, and they are mostly wrong regarding Israel. But those are independent. Attacks on Israel are not anti-semetic -even when they are wrong

  43. Anonymous permalink
    August 23, 2019 2:46 pm

    NBC -“NEW: President Trump tweets that he is “ordering” US companies to look for alternatives to China, though it’s unclear under what authority the president would invoke to force businesses which are not state-run to comply with what he views as an order.”

    Was President A-Hole joking here too

    • Anonymous permalink
      August 23, 2019 2:58 pm

      Word Of The Day:


      1-Messy, wordy jargon
      2-Incomprehensible gibberish
      3-Confusing legal or bureaucratic language

      SYNONYM: Trump-speak

      EXAMPLE: Trump’s American business bafflegab causes stock market tumble:

      • dhlii permalink
        August 23, 2019 7:13 pm

        We are not citing Joe Walsh again ?

      • dhlii permalink
        August 23, 2019 7:32 pm

        There are much worse Walsh tweets, but that is not the point.

        It is arguable whether many of these examples of Walsh’s remarks are actually racist.

        It is not arguable that Whatever the standard is – Walsh is more racist than Trump.

        It is also not arguable that YOU have associated yourself with someone who make Trump look civil.

        Arguments of the form – “someone else says” – are fallacy. Most are appeals to authority. All are fallacy.

        Regardless, they are a type of fallacy that inextricably weds you to the “authority” you cite.

        Please keep using Joe Walsh to make your arguments.

        How about some Max Boot too ?

        And some Bill Krystol, he was pushing Walsh as a republican challenger to Trump in 2020.

        If you wish to pretend the rest of us have some guilt by association with Trump
        You guilt is worse.

        There are reasons you should make fallacious arguments.

        One of the reasons is that fallacy ultimately leads to natsy bitter debates full of accusations, and recriminations.

        The responsibility for that rests with those who resort to fallacy as their means of argument.

        Put simply – on your own terms, you OWN (or ar OWNED by) those you cite.

        There is a gigantic golf between defending one persons speach – whether good or bad.
        And using that of another to do your bidding.

        I can defend the right of NAZI’s and even Joe Walsh to speak his mind, without defending what they actually say.

        But when you offer someone else’s as an authority on anything – you tie yourself to them much more strongly that if you are merely difending their right to be wrong.

        Saying someone IS right about something weds you to them.
        Saying someone has the right to say something weds you to liberty.

    • August 23, 2019 5:46 pm

      Trump is the GOP reaction to Obama ‘s “Administration by Force”.

      Sanders/Warren etc is the extreme lefts reaction to Trump.

      Hold.on tight for the GOP reaction to socialist force driven politics. Trump will look tame compared to what will come after that fiasco.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 23, 2019 8:04 pm

        Executive orders are limited tin domain to the constitutional powers of the president.
        They are further limited by constitutional laws.
        And they are further limited to the direct conduct of the executive branch.

        Trump can not Order citizens to do anything.
        He can not order Congress or the supreme court.

        The most he can do is order the executive ranch not to do business with companies that do business with china.

        That would be unwise but still within his powers.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 23, 2019 7:07 pm

      “If President Obama had ….”

      President Obama DID do many of those things.

      It is possible to argue that Trump is the most vigorous enforcer of US immigration laws in a century. But even if Trump is #1 Obama is #2. The cages that the left bemoans were built by Obama.

      Trump’s “muslim ban” EO version 1 was nearly word for word the same as a an Obama EO that was mostly ignored by the press.

      The better statement is that if Trump had the FBI, CIA, NSA, DOJ, IRS,…. targetting political oponents – he would already have been impeached.

      Yet there is zero doubt Obama did all of that, and increasing evidence that he did much more. If what the CEO of Overstock is telling us is correct:

      Not only did the Trump intelligence investigation being in 2015 but Rubio and Cruz were targeted TOO, and this was not been directed as normal by field offices of the FBI but entirely from big muckety mucks in the top of DOJ/FBI in DC.

      Please tell me excatly what it is that Trump has DONE that is nearly as egregious as Obama.

      As time moves we are even learning more about the Clinton investigation that is damaging.

      During the entire Clinton Email investigation – no one was obligated to make any statements under penalty of perjury. We now know that not only were Clinton’s emails on a private bathroom email server bas ass naked to the world, but they were echoed to a gmail account.
      We now know that Clinton and her staff were repeatedly told that what they were doing was a massive mishandling of classified information, that it was illegal and that it needed to stop.
      We now know they were taking pictures of information on secure terminals inside the SCIF using ipads and then retyping them into emails. Put simply that means they KNEW they were sending classified information. Everything on a secure terminal is presumed classified, and if you need to take a photo of it to copy it you KNOW you are doing something wrong.
      I do not think we yet know how they got ipads into the SCIF – that is not allowed.
      Merely taking pictures in a SCIF is a crime.

      So please explain to me what the basis is for the obama administration to by spying on Trump, Rubio and Cruz in 2015 ? Steele has not yet raised his ugly head.

      All this appears to be tied to Butina. And what appears to have occured is that people in the top Tier of the FBI/CIA/NSA were using the CEO of Overstock to redirect Butina at political enemies and to provide them a heads up ahead of time so that they could monitor her.

      Eseneitally unbenownced to Butina and the Russians the CIA, NSA and especially thge FBI were “running” her as a foreign agent targeting political enemies for the purpose of gaining political advantage.

      Do you not understand how wrong this is ?

      From what I can tell – nothing Butina was actually doing was improper or illegal.
      She appears to be a pro gun libertarian from Rusia trying to connect like minded people in both the US and Russia.

      The crime is not what she was doing – but what the Obama administration was essentially using her for – The FBI, DOJ, CIA, NSA were being used to create the appearance of campaign related foreign espionage for political purposes where there was none.

      It is pretty much certain that Mueller uncovered this. We know that After telling the country Butina was a major spy, and locking her in solitary for a year, that Mueller ultimately agreed to just deport her.

      It is arguable that silencing Butina was the actual goal, because too deep a lok at Butina exposes the entire Obama administration.

      So is this stuff OK with you ?

      What exactly is it that Trump has done that compares ?

      If you are going to say Obama could not have gotten away with What Trump did – you are going to have to have real examples of something Trump has done that is worse than Obama ?

      Thus far I beleive Trump has lost in the Supreme court 2-3 times. One was a case Obama started that it is arguable Trump deliberatly lost.

      The other two were 5-4 decisons. Obama has lost in the supreme court 9-0 more than all prior presidents combined.

      Surely you are not saying that SCOTUS thinks that Trumps actions thus far have been more lawless than Obamas.

      What are these acts that obama could not have gotten away with ?

      70% of Trump’s presidency has been undoing the extraconstitutional things Obama did.

      THAT is what all these nutjobs thik is outrageous.

    • Priscilla permalink
      August 23, 2019 7:50 pm

      China is illegally exporting massive amounts of fentanyl into the US.

      Enough to kill every man, woman and child in this country, and it is the Chinese government that is doing this, using the subterfuge of false packaging and labeling, among other things.

      It is, for all intents and purposes, an act of chemical warfare, and it’s been going on for some time.

      If Trump wants to order American shipping companies to cooperate with our goverment’s efforts to stop a foreign enemy’s attempts to poison and kill our citizens, I’m good with that. And, if you’re not, because you hate Trump? Then you’re seriously deranged.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 23, 2019 8:29 pm

        Turn about is fair play – but Chian should be targeting the UK not the US. It was the british that were adicting the chinese to opiates 200 years ago.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 23, 2019 8:44 pm

        I do not know all the details of this.

        But I am still opposed to Trump directing private companies.

        I am even more strongly opposed to efforts to find ways to filter our shipments.

        I do not want the government to easily eb able to figure out what I am buying from Who.

        If I want to Buy Amoxicillian from Canada, or RU486 from France or whatever from China circumenting our FDA and regulations and drug laws – I think that is fantastic.

        I want all economic regulation to fail because it is beyond govenments ability to enforce.

        If that means more narcotics – so be it.

        Portugal decriminalized everything over 20 years ago. The results have not been perfect. Drug addiction has not disappeared. But many of the negative impacts have disappeared completely.

        I am not a drug user, so I have to trust what I hear. but it is my understanding no one deliberately takes Fentenyl or CarFentynyl. The high is too short and not that good.
        It is becomeing more common because it is cheap – because it is synthetic and opiates are not. And because it is easy to transport because of its incredibly high concentration.

        As I understand it a sheet of paper dipped in carfentinyl provides the equivalent of 10000 hits. The bad news is that an inocent person just touching the paper without gloves can overdose.

        Regardless my understanding is that fentinyl and carfentinyl would likely disappear if you legalized drugs. Their values are low cost and the ability to thwart law enforcement.

        We have lots the war on drugs – just as we did prohibition. It is long past time to admit that.
        It is time to figure out how we can quit trying to deal with drugs as a crime problem.

        I know families that have been destoryed by drugs. I know good people who have become bad people over drugs. I am not pretending this is not a problem.

        I put a great deal of effort into tilting the odds that my kids would not develop drug problems – and whether by effort or luck I have been fortunate so far.

        But I understand that everyone is not.

      • Priscilla permalink
        August 23, 2019 8:57 pm

        So, if I gave you a “cookie” and you consumed it, because I told you that it was made of flour and sugar, but it was actually spiked with poison,and I knew that it would kill you, that would be acceptable in your view?

        Why have a government at all, if not to protect us from foreign enemies who seek to harm us?

      • dhlii permalink
        August 23, 2019 11:30 pm

        Fraud and murder are not economic transactions – they are crimes – they are uses of force against another, and they are the legitimate domain of government.

        If I give you money expecting Fentinyl in return – and I get fentinyl from you – that is not within the legitimate domain of government.

        If the chinese(government or private) lie to american consumers – even drug addicts, there is a role for government. but so long as the exchange is free an honest, it is not the business of government.

        Government has three roles – all of which are inextricalbly related to the social contract – yeilding out natural right to initiate force, in return for the protection of our other rights by government – particulerly when force or fraud are used.

        Most of the time the use of force or fraud is a crime (or an act of war).

        Governments first role is the punishment of crimes.
        Its next role is the enforcement of agreements.

        The only role government has in free exchange is – ensuring that it is free, and then ensuring that the parties live up to what they agreed to do.
        That is the 2nd role of government.

        We have a duty not to harm our neighbors.
        When we do so through force or fraud that is a crime.
        But sometimes we harm others without using force or fraud – usually, if not always unintentionally. If I skid on an icy road and run into your porch – I harmed you.
        I am responsible to repair the damage to your porch.
        That is the third role of government – enforcing the requirement that I make you whole if I harm you.

        Harms must be real. If you are a snowflake and go into emotional shutdown because of my words – that is your problem. Nor can the harm by hypothetical. Nor can the harm be diminish.

        Those are the three legitimate roles of government
        Criminal law
        Civil/contract law
        Tort law.

        Free Trade between individuals within a country – within the constraints of LEGITIMATE criminal, civil and tort law, is not the business of government.
        Nor is trade between individuals and different countries.

      • Priscilla permalink
        August 23, 2019 11:39 pm

        If China is exporting fentanyl ILLEGALLY, that is, exporting it in boxes that say “baking soda,” and they are doing so for the express purpose of harming the US, that is NOT free trade. And the President of the US has a duty to stop it, and, if necessary, to retaliate. Do you not accept that a government has a right to defend its laws from foreign state actors who try to violate them? I wonder if we are talking past each other, because I have never known you to make an argument like that.

      • August 24, 2019 12:15 am

        Priscilla, Dave makes these arguements all the time. If “A” buys anything from”B” and its a fair exchange , then he believes that should be legal. Anything from any one or any country.

        However, how is Trump going to enforce that regulation? No one can expect UPS, FedX or any shipper to search every box sent from China. I suspect he would find some derogatory comment to say about UPS if they began opening shipments destined for Trump Resorts to look for fentenol.

        And the Chinese could care less what he does. They could be taken to the WTO about illegal shipments, be sanctioned and they will just give us the finger and continue shipping.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 24, 2019 3:11 am

        Your argument that UPS, Fedex etc can not inspect every package is good too
        Government should not be seeking to do the impossible. If it can not be done properly it should not be done half ass.

        Next we have govenrment converting Law enforcement to a private task.
        And imposing the cost on private actors.

        China and Xi are not immune to their world image – or Tanks would have rolled through Hong Kong long ago.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 24, 2019 12:38 am

        Fraud in free exchange is NOT deceiving the government, it is deceiving the other party to the exchange.

        I do not care how the chinese package the product.
        I do care if they are selling baking soda to people expecting baking soda, and they are getting fentinyl.

        Nor do I care about the phrase “illegally” when that is refering to laws outside the legitimate scope of government.

        The rule of law is NOT the rule of any law that can get made.
        It is the rule of actual legitimate laws.

        The declaration of independence is a claim that England both did not make laws for the colonies that were needed and made laws that were not legitimate.

        And that both actions were outside “the rule of law”.

        A nation can have volumes of laws – and still be lawless.

        I do not accept that ANY nation has the authority to “defend” itself against breaches of invalid laws. Slavery was constitutional and legal in the US at one time. It was never moral, or just or inside the legitimate power of government.

        I have attacked those on the left for their claims to be able to read Trumps or anyone else’s mind. The same is true of your efforts to read “china’s” mind.
        Further what is on china’s mind – does not matter.
        I do not care what their “intent” is.

        Are their actions within the legitimate scope of government to interfere with.

        In each of the areas I noted regarding legitimate government – what mattered was ACTIONS not intentions.

        While intention is often an element of crimes. It is NEVER sufficient alone.
        There must be an actual act that abridges a right.

        We have also discussed this in the context of whether Trump “obstructed justice”.

        Intent alone is NOT obstruction (or any other crime), partly because we do not prosecute thought crimes, and partly because we can not read minds.

        I similarly opposed Bushes “preemptive war” doctrine – again we can prepare for the bad acts of other nations based on our guesses as to their intentions.
        But “acts of war” require ACTS,

        So long as the buyer and the sellor both understand the transaction and enter it freely – the hypothetical “intentions” of either are irrelevant.

        I do not think we are talking past each other.

        You are just bumping into the fact that I am a really hard core libertarian.

        I have problems with China’s purported actions – they too fall outside the scope of legitimate government. But outside of actual acts of aggression (force) against the US or its people, the responsibility to address the illegitimate and unjust actions of the chinese government belong to its people.

        I would further not – while legitimate government absolutely positively rests on a MORAL foundation, all acts that are immoral are NOT within the scope of govenrment.

        I think that it is wrong – immoral to sell people some drugs. I think it is wrong – immoral to take some drugs. But everything that is immoral is not and should not be illegal.

        I think that chineses efforts to amplify drug problems in the US are immoral. But that is not inside the scope of legitimate government to thwart.

        I think the efforts of the Russian govenrment (as well as those of the US government) to influence foreign elections are immoral – they are also outside the legitimate scope of govenrment. But thwarting them is ALSO outside the legitimate scope of govenrment.

        Many people – drug dealers, foreign govenrments try to persuade people to bad choices – that is immoral. That does not make it illegal.

        Beyond those three pilars of legitimate government, fighting immorality is private – meaning outside the scope of government. It is the role of individuals, churches, civic groups. charities.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 23, 2019 11:39 pm

        If I wish to sell Tide Pods – is it the business of government to prevent that ?
        People have been injured or killed by eating tide pods.
        So long as I sell Tide Pods as Tide Pods, so long as I do not sell them to you as candy – why should government have a role ?

        Can I sell you a gun ? A car ? A Bicycle ? These are all dangerous things.

        Can I sell you a gun – even if you might harm your self of others ?

        So long as I can sell you other dangerous things – why can’t I sell you drugs ?

        People buying Drugs know they are dangerous. But they want to buy them anyway – just like cars and guns.

        Government has a role:

        If I offer you candy and give you tide pods.

        If I sell you candy and give you nothing.

        If high on sugar I run down your mailbox.

      • Priscilla permalink
        August 24, 2019 10:28 am

        This is actually the kind of discussion that I really like about Rick’s site. The 3 of us have been here for umpteen years, and we have agreed and disagreed on any number of issues ( Dave, I do remember practically begging you to vote for Romney, and running smack dab into your argument that Romney would just take us to the same place that Obama would, just more gradually) And, over the years I have come to understand and even agree with many of your arguments. It helps that Ron is also libertarian in his outlook, but with a more pragmatic, conservative side. Or maybe it’s the other way around. I guess that I genuinely am somewhat of a populist, now. Or, at least I often argue like one. Is there such a thing as a conservapopitarian?

        Anyway, all that aside, any American president has a duty and obligation to insure national security. In my opinion, Trump is doing the right thing, although , as time goes on, he might be more successful using a different strategy. Right now, he is pursuing a trade war as opposed to a shooting war, because trade is how the Chinese have chosen to weaken us and strengthen themselves. Unfortunately, success may lead to more aggression on the part of the Chinese, who have used “free trade” to provide a platform for them to become the world’s leading exporter of consumer goods.

        The truth, that everyone now knows, is that free trade with a centrally controlled economic power does not result in everyone prospering, and in our case, it’s resulted in the hollowing out of our industrial jobs base, among other things.

        So, what is the job of a chief executive in this situation? How does a president protect American interests, without being rolled by a foreign government who uses “free trade” as a weapon?

      • August 24, 2019 11:51 am

        Priscilla, now are you mixing arguements?
        1. Trump ordering companies like FedEx UPS and all other carriers to search for and refuse all deliveries of fentanyl
        2. Trade war to get actual fair trade between countries

        Because I think I am 50-50 with each or you on these.
        Dave does not support Trump on trade policies. ayou seem to.
        Dave does not support Trump on inspecting Chinese shipments, you seem to.

        I’m with you on trade.
        I’m with Dave on inspecting shipments from China.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 24, 2019 3:05 pm

        Just to be clear:

        Trump’s trade war with China is about two things – China buying more US goods.
        Intellectual property.

        Both of these are inconsequential.
        Ultimately China WILL buy more from the US – despite their efforts to avoid that.

        Intellectual property is a misnomer. It is fundimetally unprotectable.
        Furhter the whole premise of stealing IP rests on the false premise that a nation capable of stealing IP AND making use of it, was not capable of developing it in the first place.

        What the US should fear is not China “stealing” but what happens when circumstances reach the point where the average chinese person is as able to create as the average american.

        Japan reached that stage – but Japan is not a nation of 1.3B people.

        China has a LONG way to go to reach the US standard of living which is a prerequisite for real intellectual competition. If it ever reaches that – china will dominate the world – just from the sheer number of people.

        I am much more concerned about the US trying to limit what americans can buy – that negatively impacts our standard of living.

        Even if inspections of all packages were possible the cost increase to US consumers would outweigh any benefits.

      • August 24, 2019 3:41 pm

        Dave, I will say this one more time. I know completely that you accept China doing anything they want with trade. I understand. I also understand that jobs may not return regardless. If we stop importing from China, we may import from Mexico.

        HOWEVER!!!!! Please understand my position on trade even though you dont agree. Before all this China trade war started, China imposed a tariff on our cars going to China at a minimum of about 25%, with some higher. We imported Buicks from China without tariffs. NO!! I dont support protectionist tariffs except for limited, specific reasons like Harley Davidson reorganization in 1983. Limited for reason and duration. I dont support farm supports or tariffs on agriculture to protect our farmers that keeps foreign product out if those countries dont penalize anything going to them, ie sugar tariffs.I can accept some African nation trying to build a democratic nation and their economy by manufacturing something like jeans and then putting tariffs on jeans to protect their business, but not China. Its close to #1 economy. They need no tariffs! Free, Fair, Equal, Matching! 0%= 0%. 50% = 50%

      • dhlii permalink
        August 24, 2019 8:19 pm

        No I do not accept that China should do whatever it pleases regarding Trade.

        But China doing stupid things – HARMS CHINA, and is therefore not the business of the US government.

        “the jobs are not returning”.
        If I said that it is incorrect. More accurately
        One way or another the jobs were going away no matter what.
        The difference is the former presumes they went away by some chinese malfeasance – never to return.
        The other that their departure was inevitable.
        That is the only thing that is actually true.

        To the greatest extent possible a functioning free market will ALWAYS strive to DESTROY as many jobs as possible and replace them with more productive ones.

        It is completely irrelevant whether less productive jobs go to china, robots, mexico, outsourcing, india, …..

        The process of raising standard of living ALWAYS requires the destruction of jobs.

        That is what being MORE PRODUCTIVE means. Doing more with fewer people.

        We have 8 years of 2% stagnant growth – if you really want to stop ALL job losses – you are looking at an economy that would be significantly worse than that.

        None of this has anything to do with China.

      • August 24, 2019 9:51 pm

        Dave, you are not reading or understanding my positions on trade. So I dont have to enter it again, I will copy and paste.

        “HOWEVER!!!!! Please understand my position on trade even though you dont agree. Before all this China trade war started, China imposed a tariff on our cars going to China at a minimum of about 25%, with some higher. We imported Buicks from China without tariffs. NO!! I dont support protectionist tariffs except for limited, specific reasons like Harley Davidson reorganization in 1983. Limited for reason and duration. I dont support farm supports or tariffs on agriculture to protect our farmers that keeps foreign product out if those countries dont penalize anything going to them, ie sugar tariffs.I can accept some African nation trying to build a democratic nation and their economy by manufacturing something like jeans and then putting tariffs on jeans to protect their business, but not China. Its close to #1 economy. They need no tariffs! Free, Fair, Equal, Matching! 0%= 0%. 50% = 50%”

        I said nothing about jobs. I also said I dont agree with our protectionist ag policies. I said nothing about productivity. I said I support fair, free, equal , matching trade!

        So, dont respond. It will do no good and this tread is beginning to get bogged down with too many cooments trying to load.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 25, 2019 1:47 am


        I read, and I think reasonable well understand your position. I just disagree.
        Am I prohibited from making arguments that are not direct responses to yours ?

        What I will cede is that:

        1). Trump has demonstrated that their are instances in which the negative impacts of Tarrifs to the imposing country are not large.
        Just to be clear – there are many instances in which they are large.

        2). There are POLITICAL circumstances in which the negative impact of Tarrifs on a trading partner might be of value.
        Overall, I do NOT support using trade – such as sanctions, as a weapon. It is not usually very effective. I am not sure how unique the situation with China is right now.
        Trade Sanctions – which are nothing more than an infinite tarrif, have been far less effective than their advocates have claimed in the past – Iraq, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Cuba, …. all come to mind.
        However it is my impression at the moment that Xi/China are under significant pressure right now. I think if Xi could do so without losing face (and losing power) he would do so.

        As with most of the issues that I disagree with you and Trump on – such as immigration:

        There are good choices, bad choices, and ones in between
        In immigration Trump is complying with the law, and doing what is best out of what is politically possible. I do not have to fully agree to reject the claim that Trump’s approach to immigration is disasterous. It is not. It is not what I want, but there are far worse choices.

        Trump’s handling of Trade is much the same. It is not what I want, It is not the best, but it is not the disaster that the left and media are trying to sell.

        Further if Trump succeeds in opening China – and I do not mean merely with respect to Trade. I mean if Trump’s pressure creates the impetus needed to bring about political change in China – that would be good.

        Just to be clear – even if that happens – I expect it to be chaotic – atleast at first.

      • August 25, 2019 11:53 am

        Dave “Am I prohibited from making arguments that are not direct responses to yours ?”

        No, but when one responds within the thread of comments on a discussion, it seems to be safe to assume that the comment is a direct response to what others posted. That is what “reply” refers to. The message I get at the top of notifications shows ” in response to Xxx”, and then the original comment is listed so readers know what the response is for.

        When one clicks ” leave comment” at the beginning of the comment section, that opens a new discussion. I thought that was for comments not in direct response to what others had posted.

        How else are we to determine if a comment is a direct response to one made by another or a new line of thoughts?

      • dhlii permalink
        August 25, 2019 6:25 pm

        To clarify.

        Often I respond point by point to other comments.

        Often I respond to the broad theme of a thread.

        Sometimes both.

        Further – I am not alone,

        If I were we could not have jumped from mass shootings to trade and immigration.

        I post more frequently and often more voluminously than others – guilty.

        As to deviating from the core of some comment I am responding to,
        my posts are not unique.

      • August 25, 2019 9:14 pm

        So when we deviate and others react to the original issues being discussed and it is not posted in the heirarchical root of cooments, then we should not be surprised when others respond as though they pertained to previous comments in the heirarchy. WordPress is like an outline of comments. Based on that, I assumed you were respond ing to my comment.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 26, 2019 3:22 am

        I was responding to your comment.

        I was not necescarily point by point responding to each of your arguments.

        Why is this an issue ?

        I thought I was the one who purportedly has asbergers or autism or some spectrum disorder that can not cope with deviation ?

      • August 26, 2019 12:21 pm

        “Why is this an issue ?”

        It is totally impossible for me to follow comments on wordpress after 50+, so the only way I can follow someones lines of thinking is through email notifications received from Word Press.

        In these email notifications is much or the original comment from person#1 and then the response from person#2.

        So if person #1 says the sky is blue.
        And person #2 says the ocean is salty and its in response to the sky being blue comment,
        That is an issue since I have no clue as to what the salty sea has to do with a blue sky.
        And going back sorting through 200+ comments to find what it refers to is impossible.

        So why is it an issue for you when I respond in the way I do asking what does a salty.ocean have to do with a blue sky?

        But to make things easier going forward, I will ignore your comments that dont relate unless in the beginning heirarchy of comments.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 26, 2019 7:07 pm

        I have WP email me new comments.

        For the most part my response is driven by the portions of the comment excerpted in the Email. Only rarely do I go back to WP and research the original comment.

        That is my “style”,

        Once in a whole I have had problems with that – because my replies are to a single comment – and then only part of that comment, not the entire thread.

        But I post for my own pleasure. Not formal debate.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 24, 2019 8:41 pm

        With respect to your “position on china”.

        China, Mexico, Michigan, Pitsburgh – it makes no difference.

        There is no RIGHT to sell to someone. There is only a right to offer.
        There is no RIGHT to buy from someone. There is only the right to ask.
        There is no RIGHT to a job. There is only the right to ask, and to get paid what was agreed on for the work that you completed.

        That does not “sound” pleasant, or fair. But it is life. You can attempt to intefere though govenrment, but you can not actually create a right where one does not exist.

        Further the absence of these rights is extremely important.
        It is the absence of rights to buy, sell, a job, that require us to persuade others of the value of what we are offering. That is the single most important factor driving rising standards of living. To get the sale, the job, … you have to strive to deliver more value than others for less cost. As buyers as sellors, as job seekers as employers. We all are competing. Succeeding requires we do better than others.

        This is not a “china thing”.

        Absolutely China is making poor choices.
        But it is stupid for america to respond to Chinese stupidity with stupidity of our own.

        I will qualify this in only TWO ways.

        First – thus far all of Trump’s “completed” deals have resulted in freer trade than when he started. That makes this debate about the morality and efficacy of means not ends.

        Put simply thus far Trump has succeeded in doing good by behaving badly.
        I am NOT an ends justifies the means person.
        Further MOST of the time people argue the ends justify the means – they end up with both bad ends and bad means.

        Second – there is more going on with China that just Trade.

        Reagan quite literally spent the Soviet Union into oblivion.
        Trump appears to be applying a permutation of that to China.

        That is an entirely different discussion.
        Can we use economic warfare to bring about change in a totalitarian regime.
        Again MOST of the time – that does not work. Sanctions as an example are pretty ineffective.

        At the Same time I think that Trump – like Reagan, became president at the right moment, and had a rare oportunity to act – possibly effectively.

        Trump has been so “lucky” that an intelligent person must get past beleiving it is just luck.

        At a time when most of us have thought of China as strong and beligerant, Trump has recognized that the China is weak.

        Nor does this just appear to be with respect to China.

        In area after area where the conventional wisdom has been the US does not how the power to accomplish its will. Trump has succeeded in getting pretty much what he wants.

        China has been fighting the fact that significant difficult structural and political changes are necescary if it wants to continue to raise the standard of living of the chinese people.
        Further that if it fails to keep raising standards of living – change will come about a different way.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 24, 2019 8:46 pm

        There is only one legitimate reason for Tarriffs – as taxes to support government.

        For that, they must be uniform and low, and other forms of taxes must be eliminated.

        Regardless, the actual economic evidence on Tarriffs is unequivocal. All are bad, some are worse. Does nto matter which side.

        But an awful lot of what Trump is doing is Political – on multiple levels not economic.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 24, 2019 8:49 pm

        Whenever you use words like “fair” and equal, you are wrong, you play into the hands of the left.

        Our founders fought for liberty – not equality.

        The french revolution was about equality more than liberty.

        Every bloody revolution in history promised fairness and equality.

        These are chimeras. They do not exist and we would not want them if they did.

        Further – freedom will be equality and fairness hands down all the time.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 24, 2019 2:36 pm

        I like debating how things SHOULD be.

        But the fact that everything is not as I think it SHOULD be does not make everyone who disagrees evil.

        I do not agree with some of what Trump has done – particularly on Trade.
        Btu I am capable of looking at things as they are and grasping that even thought Trump is not doing what I think is best, he is doing “good enough” or better than the prior status quo.

        I am not nearly so worried about china. All the issues raised regarding China – are problems for the chinese people. They are not really problems for the US

        Further I find it interesting – in two years, Trump has successfully (with Xi’s help) made China into a Paria.

        Regardless. I expect China to change – radically, in my lifetime.
        I do not know if that change will come tomorow – which is possible, or in 15 years.

        I find it really odd that american youth is embracing an ideology that has failed so miserably throughout the world – that STILL has a grip on too many people, and that we are still seeing the last of its failings arround the world.

        Anyway overall I think the parts of China that are working – that are the reasons for its success post Mao – are a very good influence on america.
        And the parts that are not – will eventually fail on their own.

        BTW Trump’s “Trade War” appears to be “succeeding” because of mostly free markets.
        china is dependent on the US for what we buy from them. There is no replacement for access to the US markets. Conversely the US is not dependent on what China buys from us.
        China MUST buy the things it buys from the US – and if it does not buy them from the US it will buy them from another country and US producers can replace as suppliers whoever that country shorted when if shifted to selling to China. China buys global commodities from us.
        If China does not buy our Soy – someone else will.

        But if the US does not buy Chinese iphones – the global market will not provide China an equivalent market.

        That is why China has devalued its currency – and that likely more than vitiates even the Tarrifs Trump has not yet imposed.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 24, 2019 2:48 pm

        The “truth” is that China’s trade gamesmanship harms its own people more than anyone else.

        There is no “right” to sell to someone, nor a right to buy from them.

        Free trade EXPLICITLY means trade that occurs when both sides CHOOSE to exchange.

        China wants one sided trade – that is a valid choice, but one that harms them.

        “Consumption is the sole end and purpose of all production; and the interest of the producer ought to be attended to only so far as it may be necessary for promoting that of the consumer.”
        Adam Smith.

        We have been seeing production shifting from China for a long time – and accelerating now.

        High end production is returning to the US – because we are better at flexible mass production of high end goods – but that is highly automated, there are few jobs, but the pay very well.
        Low end production is shifting to countries that are where China was a couple of decades ago.

        This has not wreaked havoc on China until the present – because even as production leaves China, global demand grows, so china produces ever more – even as production of many things moves elsewhere.

        In the face of Trump’s confrontation with China – the departure of manufacturing from China is accelerating – and that production is NEVER coming back – just as the US is never getting all those textile manufacturing jobs back.

      • dhlii permalink
        August 24, 2019 2:56 pm

        China is NOT responsible for hollowing out our industrial jobs base – that was inevitable.

        SOME of what has occured with China is much like what occured with Japan previously.
        And will occur again with other countries.

        Jobs will ALWAYS flow to places that can make goods cheaper.

        As with Japan before and with China now – low paying jobs – the jobs the chinese purportedly “stole” from the US are leaving China – for other low wage low skill countries.

        The only way these jobs ever return to the US is if robots do them.

        This is NATURAL. It is how it MUST be forever.

        Standard of living rises only when we produce greater value with less human cost.

        China taking crappy jobs from the US was on NET a very good thing for the US.
        Even though it might not seem that way for those who lost jobs.

        Just as the ever improving spinning machines were a good thing when the ludites tried to burn them all.

        We are approaching the point at which millions of US jobs are going to be lost to driverless vehicles. That will be very bad for people whose job is to drive. but it will be very good for the country as a whole.

        And that story will repeat forever. It is the story of how standard of living rises.
        The mechanism is painful, but it is effective.

  44. dhlii permalink
    August 23, 2019 3:43 pm

    IT is so easy to pass a firearms background check that a reporter with a clean record failed TWICE at Walmart

  45. August 25, 2019 12:19 pm

    Dave, not sure where webdisagree with immigration. So lets discuss.
    I have said many times that what we have is not working.
    I have said all barriers need to be removed. They dont work anyway.
    i know terrorist are much more able to enter, most wont risk getting caught with hispanics escaping their home countries.
    I have said our immigration regulations need complete rewrites.
    I support almost unlimited immigration.
    Immigrant coming here come here for a better life.
    No government support of any kind, money, healtcare, food stamps, etc. Better life = working.
    The only government support is vaccinations at ports of entry to ward off illnesses from other countries. (Remember the indians welcomed Europeans and thousands died from plague, chicken pox, influenza, measles, scarlet fever, smallpox, tuberculosis, and whooping cough. Then the Europeans were not welcomed!) And greed and colonist negative views of indians created more problems!

    Your thoughts.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 25, 2019 6:35 pm

      I am going to disagree only in the sense that there is not necescarily a single best solution to immigration.

      We can discuss what you have proposed.
      There are many other possibilities we could discuss.

      But while you and I can have a rational discussion – even if sometimes we disagree over immigration, trade, ….

      Right now the country can not manage to do so.

      The problem is NOT an absence of ideas to discuss.

      The central problem is that one side of the debate – of pretty much all debates, has no interest in debate. They are not even interested in finding an answer. They are merely interested in using the existance of the debate as proof the other side is immoral.

      You and I can discuss immigration – and I would enjoy that.
      But nothing is happening regarding immigration – unless republicans manage to FORCE something through congress somehow. And that is unlikely.

      Democrats and the left are not going to have a discussion – they have precluded themselves from being able to do so. Merely to attempt to find answers is “racist”

      There is no “other side” to this debate. I do not mean the other side is short of ideas.
      It is worse than that. The only thing they want from the immigration debate is to assail opponents with claims of racism.

      Every attempt to solve the problems of immigration are “racism”.

      They are not even arguing for the status quo. They are not arguing FOR anything.

      I would say they do not know what they want – but they actually do.
      What they want is to be able to constantly scream racist, hateful, hating hater.

      That is it, that is the goal.

      And that is not something that can be worked with

  46. August 26, 2019 4:25 pm

    “Rep. Tom Malinowski, D-N.J., defended the presence of both legal and illegal immigrants on Tuesday, asking his constituents: “Who do you think is mowing our beautiful lawns?””

    Damn, the Democrats can only dream of a GOP member saying somsthing this racist and not having the MSM demanding his resignation.

    • dhlii permalink
      August 26, 2019 7:14 pm

      Dan’s comments are no more/less “racist” than Trump’s.
      i.e. None.

      But I would ask – why we have “illegal immigrants” mowing our lawns ?
      Why not the neighbor kids as kin decades past ?

      Likely because our laws have made it such that hiring people to mow your lawn is illegal, and the only people who will do it are “illegal immigrants”.

      Get rid of the Minimum wage. Get rid of “payroll taxes” – each of us is individually responsible to pay our income taxes – not our employers.

      Get rid of all the assorted mandates on employers to do all kinds of stupid things to benefit government, and allow people to hire people to do anything under any terms that all parties can agree to.

      Get rid of the “social safety net” – that is what savings and private charity are for, and if you eliminate those and their taxes – you will eliminate the deficit, and have enough extra income – even at low wages to fund those services yourself. Government is the most ineficient and expensive way to deliver services anyway.

      If you can not “get rid” of those things, then at the very least restrict them to citizens.

      If you do all of that, you can actually have open boarders.

  47. dhlii permalink
    August 26, 2019 7:45 pm

    Unfortunately this is unlikely to ever get the attention the Kavanaugh free for all got last fall.

    The gist of this is that HuffPo defamed a black College professor that was an aquaitance of Kavaugh’s in its reporting. Frankly the media defamed lots of people.

    Regardless it accused Evans of dealing drugs and being involved with Kavanaugh and others in acts that lead to the death of David Kennedy.

    When you accuse someone in the press of murder – you had damn well better get the story straight. HuffPo did not.

    Frankly this is little different from the entire media reporting on Kavanaugh – and in fact on most everything today.

    Much of the press is worse than gossip.

    This is also part of why Trump is likely to win in 2020.

    There is nothing that is in the press that is likely true anymore.
    Every straight news story is an op-ed, and all are liberally spliced with rumors rather than verified facts.

    Recently Rick chimed in noting that 23 of the last 24 “mass shootings” involve assault rifles.
    Somehow that was evidence that he was using facts not feelings.

    First the data asserted was wrong – just about every mass shooter has hand guns, and that is the primary weapon they use. Only about 40% of mass shooting involve rifles. Those are just the ones that tend to make the news.
    Mostly because the lone wolf mentally disturbed mass killer is fixated on image.
    They want to be seen and remembered as a dangerous person. They seek infamy.
    So they will do whatever it takes to get the atention of the press.
    And AR-15, body armor and targeting a school, as well as leaving behind a manifesto are all techniques that increase their profile – that and body count.

    Regardless, it is also true that every single mass shooter in the past 40 years was ambulatory – they were not physically handicapped. They had two working arms, legs, …

    My Point is that correlation is NOT causation – even if Rick had gotten the “facts” straight.

    Choosing feelings over facts does not mean – not having any facts.
    It often means asserting that some facts have meaning, when there is no evidence that they do. Though the very commonly ties to asserting facts that are WRONG.

    Recently the media and several prominent politicians have claimed that the US is by far the worst country for mass shootings – by a factor of 4. That based on a single study by an ideological professor, that refused to share either his data or methods, and that was simply disproven by researchers who bothered to check the data.

    Nor was this fundimentally a question of reasonable differences in interpretation or data collection.

    The US has kept excellent records of mass shootings for several decades.
    The error in the FBI records of “mass shootings” is likely to be small – though it near certain is a small understatement of the total US mass shootings.

    Most foreign countries do not keep records of the same quality – the primary source of records of such information is news stories.
    Gauging the number of mass shootings in a foreign country from news reports is fraught with error – pretty much all of which lean towards massively understating the numbers.

    If ten researchers using the same defintion of mass shootings do independent research on a specific foreign country, they are likely to come up with 10 different widely varying results.

    But the nature of the methods of research and the data tell us that absent deliberate bias and failure to use the agreed criteria, that the best number will be the largest number.

    When doing research it is very important to understand the nature of the problem and the nature of the data.

    I have had multiple projects over the past several hears that involved collecting massive amounts of data of a physical phenomena, that was very noisy. The data smeared all over the place. But in both instances the physical facts, dictated that as noisy as the data was it did NOT distribute in a traditional “bell curve”. That the data distributed essentially as a waterfall with a fairly hard edge at one end. And that Edge was the “correct” value.

    A version of this is true about gleaning data on anything from press reports.
    Absent fake reports of mass shootings, and accidentally conflating two different reports of the same shooting, the “best” number of mass shootings derived by gathering data from press reports will be the highest number – nearly always.

    Using press reports over the past 40 years – the US ranks 61st out of 172 countries in mass shootings per capita. The US has less significantly mass shootings per capita than about 1/2 of europe – countries were private ownership of guns is illegal.

    There is no evidence that any gun law ever concocted has had any effect at all on mass killings, and little on “mass shootings”.

    Absent actual evidence of an effect – and random factoids such as asserting that most mass shooters are red heads – whether true or not, is STILL arguing feelings over facts.

  48. dhlii permalink
    August 28, 2019 1:12 am

    • August 31, 2019 12:35 pm

      We need more of this type humor and satire and less of the insane attacks on politicians we see today. We have become blinded to the real problems being created by our government.

      What is overlooked too often by everyone is the loss of rights such as those experienced by this legal immigrant. Few understand when this can happen to one, it can happen to anyone. And when it goes on for 82 days, we are no better than third world countries.

  49. dhlii permalink
    August 31, 2019 2:50 pm

    A tale of two reports.

    So the Mueller report comes out and finds:

    No evidence that Trump or the Trump campaign “colluded” with Russia during the 2016 election.

    Evidence that Trump was angry about an investigation that we are increasingly learning had absolutely NO LEGITIMATE basis, that was purely political, that was the product of actual collusion between a politically corrupt administration and the opposing political campaign.
    That Trump was NOT the only target – that Senators Rubio and Cruz were also targeted, and that Trump MIGHT (everyone Mueller claims Trump talked to about this denies it publicly) have talked about firing Mueller.

    Mueller speculates that Trump might have fired Comey to “obstruct justice” – despite myriads and increasingly good reasons to fire Comey, and despite the fact that Mueller produces the evidence that Trump KNEW that firing Comey would not end the investigation.
    But Mueller is unwilling to make a legal assertion that constitutes Obstruction.

    At the end of the day, that is all Mueller comes up with.

    From this the “news” is that Trump was not “exhonerated”.

    That he obstructed justice – a claim that is ludicrous on its faces and that despite all his hemming and hawing Mueller refuses to assert.

    That the only reason that Mueller did not conclude Trump obstructed Justice was an OLC oppinion that a sitting president can not be indicted – Mueller bungles answering this in his testimony and as a result publicly explicitly denies that, but still that is what the news reports.

    Then we have the IG Comey report(s).

    In the Clinton email report the IG excoriates SOME of Comey’s actions as insubordinate, and outside his authority. But finds his refusal to recommend prosecution of Clinton within the domain of legitimate actions – though at the extreme end, despite excoriating the way he handled it.

    In the separate report on the Comey’s role on the Trump/Russia Collusion investigation,
    The IG refers Comey to the DOJ for prosecution – that is the STRONGEST conclusion of criminal conduct that is inside the power of the IG.
    The IG may convene Grand Juries, Indict, or prosecute, he also may not subpoena anyone not currently employed by government.

    The DOJ deside NOT TO PROSECUTE – because such a prosecution would appear to be political.

    So you basically have the STRONGEST assertion the IG can make of CRIMINAL misconduct – and Comey, the Press and nearly the entire democratic party reports this as exoneration.

    In the actual IG report on Comey the IG concludes what Trump and others have argued all the time – that the briefing of President Elect Trump by Comey of the Steele Dossier was:
    the result of a conspiracy of top Obama administration officials, for the purpose of leaking the steal Dossier to the press as well as an effort to hopefully entrap Trump into some admission, or action that could be used to jump start the Crossfire Hurricane investigation. That Comey has lied to Trump repeatedly – when he Comey told Trump he was not under investigation, and that Comey LIED TO CONGRESS when he told Congress there was no investigation of Trump.

    The IG repeatedly finds that Comey violated DOJ/FBI rules regulations, procedures and protocols. Just to be clear – in many instances that is a CRIME.

    There is much more in the IG’s Comey report, and we still do not have the IG’s overall

    So how is it that there can be so much disagreement regarding what is purportedly the clear meaning of each of these reports ?

    How is it that some of us see a government conspiracy against Trump, and others see dutiful public servants doing their jobs who have been exonerated, and a President who should be indicted and jailed ?

    Further – it is not just this issue – but myriads of issues, like Catastrophic Anthropocentric Global Warming and a host of others – that ALL divide much the same way, and pretty much exactly the same groups of us are on opposite sides of each issue.

    Speaking of CAGW, The Mann defamation lawsuit against Dr. Tim Bell has been dismissed, and Mann was ordered to pay Bell’s legal fee’s. Skeptics portray that as “proof” that Man is a fraud, and Bell is correct. It is my understanding that the case was NOT decided on its merrits, but was thrown out because Mann refused to provide discovery. The distinction is small. Usually people refuse discovery because it is damaging to them. Discovery failure is usually interpretted as the legal equivalent of an admission. But actual evidence – beyond what already exists (and there is alot of that) that Mann is a fraud was not presented.

    Regardless, Mann is somehow spinning this as a victory too. I am not quite sure how, as he must pay Bell’s legal fees, and his defamation claim has been tossed.

    Speaking of CAGW – recent Finish study found that the Human component of the past 40 years of climate is about 0.1% that the primary driver of global temperature changes is variations in low cloud cover.

    Regardless, My point is how is it that reality is perceived so radically differently in so many many ways by one large group as from the rest of us ?

    This pervades most everything we discuss here.

    I accused Rick of responding emotionally to the gun control debate.
    There is no evidence of any kind of any net beneficial (or even a positive effect) of gun control aside from a temporary reduction in suicides.
    You can lob whatever talking points or spin you want, you can lob erroneous facts, or maybe good ones – the claim that the US has the highest per capita rate of mass shootings over the past 40 years is FALSE – we are ranked #61 with 1/3 of europe with higher rates.
    It is also not true that “assault rifles” were used in 23 out of 24 of the most serious mass shootings. About 40% of mass shootings involve some form of long gun – rifles, shotguns, 90% of mass shooters use handguns, and most of the actual shootings are by handguns.

    Regardless, the point is that if we are unable to agree on facts, how can we possibly agree on anything ?

    Cognative biases are present in ALL of us. All of us must be careful – it is very easy and tempting to only see the evidence that supports our personal point of view and not that which contradicts it. And the world is incredibly complex, and there is ALWAYS evidence that APPEARS to support just about anything you wish to claim.

    At the same time it is usually possible to determine the most probably correct set of facts,
    Those consistent with the rest of reality.

  50. dhlii permalink
    August 31, 2019 4:04 pm

    I have repeatedly said that environmental and other safety improvements will occur regardless of government action if they have merit.

    The article below covers many things, but one is that numerous companies are IGNORING Trump’s elimination of regulations – particularly environmental regulations.

    Somehow this is presented as proof that Trump is evil or wrong or that we should not deregulate. Yet it is exactly the opposite.

    While I absolutely OPPOSE nearly all regulation of the economy, I particularly OPPOSE efforts of industries to get government to regulate them.
    The is only one purpose for an industry to demand that it be regulated – and that is to create barriers to entry to competitors. That is it, the only reason.
    Industries can develop good practices standards entirely on their own. There are myriads of those – such as ISO 9001 or UL certifications. The only purpose served by government regulation is preventing those who choose not to join industry standards – to create barriers.

    Conversely the CHOICE of BP, car companies to continue to follow regulations that have been relaxed of eliminated – is NOT proof that government should keep those regulations.
    It is closer to proof they were never needed.

    Even though CAGW is bogus – it is generally in the interests of all businesses to do what consumers value. If a significant enough portion of clients want something – even something stupid, businesses will do it. They will even call it “smart” or “green” whether it is or not, if that is what consumers want.

    Further much of what regulations seek to force is often a good idea for other reasons.
    As I have noted before all waste is just a product waiting to happen.
    When oil companies release methane into the air – whether it is actually harmful or not, they are releasing something that is a potential product. Almost always that is INITIALLY cheaper.
    But in the long run all businesses SLOWLY convert waste into new products.
    Methane has value. It was never going to be released or burned forever.

    More efficient automobiles have value. Car makers are always going to seek to make better more efficient cars – particularly if consumers value that.

    The only difference between having regulations – laws, and not having them, is whether absolutely everyone is FORCED to do something, or whether each business gets to decide on its own what the best ideas are.
    In a free market methane emissions will be curtailed eventually automatically – either because consumers value it, or because methane can be captured and resold as a product.
    Or both. But 100% of producers will not do that all of a sudden. In a free market each producer will seek its own way to reduce costs, increase sales and expand its market, and make consumers happy. Other businesses will follow those approaches that succeed.

    Regardless of what BP or automakers saying – the choices they make are ALWAYS what is in stockholders interests, That is nearly always what is in consumers best interests.

    Businesses do not behave civically or environmentally responsibly because of morality,
    they do so because it is in their interests.
    Following their interests constrained only by a few restrictions prohibiting the use of force, IS moraliy. Because morality is rooted in freedom.

  51. dhlii permalink
    August 31, 2019 4:18 pm

    In compiling the US temperature record the NOAA makes adjustments to the raw data from thousands of US weather stations. Because the quality and siting of many of more than 90% of these stations have problems that effect their long term accuracy

    In 2005 NOAA started a program to address the varied quality of weather stations across the US. They identified 114 – out of over 4000 weather stations that all met extremely strict standards – such as no heat sources within 100ft of temperature sensors.
    They further picked stations that were geographically evenly disbursed across the US.
    One of the objectives was to have a core of extremely high quality stations that required no adjustments.

    Recently the NOAA reported on US temperatures since the start of the program in 2005.

    This certified high quality network shows no warming in the US since 2005.

    The importance of the US temperature record is impossible to understate.

    Despite the problems with most US weather stations – the US weather station data is much higher quality than the rest of the world. The US also has the longest term robust geographically disbursed data of any country in the world.

    In 1900 90% of the weather stations in the world – were in the US.
    In 1900 the only large land mass in the planet with a uniform network of weather stations was the US.

    While the oldest “thermometer” records go back to 1645,. Most of the world is not well covered even today. There are still land masses with 1000sq miles with only 1 weather station. 75% of the earths surface is water and there is no actual grid of coverage of oceans.

    Others have taken the NOAA high quality station information further.
    They have pulled the historical raw data for those stations going back 80 years.

    That shows that temperatures in the 1930’s were HIGHER in the US than those today.

  52. September 1, 2019 11:16 pm

    They can use core samples and read the trees to get much of their historical info. I have no problems accepting that the earth is warming. It has happened for eons, I just have a problem when government tries to get involved, especially ours because they are not doing it to change anything, they are doing it for political reasons that lead no where. If Trump was to come out tomorrow and say the earth is warming and immediate changes in our policies need to take place, the democrats would immediately fond data that supports the earth cooling.

    • Priscilla permalink
      September 2, 2019 9:25 am

      No question about it. Whether or not the earth is warming or not is not the issue. The issue is whether or not government can or should do anything about it, even if it is.

      Apparently, green politicians in Europe are called “watermelons.” Green on the outside, Red on the inside.

      No coincidence that AOC’s priority is the Green New Deal.

      • Anonymous permalink
        September 2, 2019 2:38 pm

        A supremely asinine response.

        By that obtuse illogic the government should not be making plans to address Hurricane Dorian, because, you know – it may not reach landfall; or plan for any future possible natural disasters, because, duh, governments should mind their own business.

        And the US government at all levels should stop testing water and air quality because, you know, double-duh, AOC and her pals drink water and breathe air.

      • Priscilla permalink
        September 2, 2019 3:50 pm

        Nothing at all wrong with making plans to address genuine concerns and urgent situations, Roby.

        Particularly when we have evidence that those plans will save lives, as in, for example, evacuating people out of the likely path of a hurricane.

        The climate change pushing Obama’s are not sufficiently concerned about global warming that it stopped them from dropping a cool $15 million on beachfront property in Martha’s Vineyard, or stopped Barack from taking his umpteenth private jet flight to a luxury climate conference in Italy this past spring.

        And self-avowed socialist, AOC, is fine with you and I not traveling by air when it suits us, but she hops planes and takes private cars when it suits HER.

        Because she’s our better, you know? And elected by at least a couple thousand New Yorkers!

        So, yeah. They’re power hungry hypocrites, maybe not red on the inside, but slightly pink…

      • dhlii permalink
        September 2, 2019 8:23 pm

        “Nothing at all wrong with making plans to address genuine concerns and urgent situations, Roby.”

        Nearly always those concerns are NOT genuine or urgent and even when they are government is almost entirely ineffective.

        “Particularly when we have evidence that those plans will save lives, as in, for example, evacuating people out of the likely path of a hurricane.”

        With extremely rare exceptions evacuations are voluntary – and for the most part government does very little except tell people “please get out”,
        Shetlers are provided by non-profits, churches, or people stay with relatives.
        They mostly drive themselves.

        Getting people out after disaster has struck is done mostly by volunteers, not government.

        Again the same MAGA hatted people Roby hates.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 2, 2019 8:36 pm

        The real big deal about the Martha’s vinyard property – much like the billions being invested in the maldives is that it proves that people who care a great deal about money and tend to be extremely careful with their own money do not actually buy this bunk.

        According to the Warmests – Obama’s Martha’s vinyard property will be under water and worthless within his lifetime, before the mortgage if any runs out.

        if he beleives in CAGW he is either betting the government will compensate him, or throwing away his money.

        But the real truth is more likely something else. He is smart enough to know that the CAGW garbage he is selling is just that – poppy cock.

        As you said – WaterMellons Green on the Outside red on the inside.

        None of this – not the environmentalism, not what is offered about governmnet on air and water, or dealing with disasters has absolutely anything of consequence to do with solving problems. Government does very very little of that. It in fact sucks at it.

        Just to be clear – I value the environment – both near me and elsewhere.
        But the environment is far better off int he hands of the robber barrons of the past – than government. Our air and water are better left to ourselves, the efficiency of our cars is something we get to express our views on with every purchase – and believe me car companies listen to OUR whims. We are better off dealing with our own disasters – in fact we are extremely good at it.

        I have a friend who does disaster evaluation work for insurance companies. When Dorian strikes somewhere – he will be sent out QUICKLY to assess damages and expidite repairs.

        One of the things insurance companies have learned is that the quicker you deal with the damages they less severe they are.

        Christy (a republican) botched things royally post Sandy by baricading the AC Island and prohibiting people from coming and going.

        Mold is a huge problem when the interior of buildings get wet.

        Mold problems are Cheap to deal with if you act fast.

        Dry the place out. Get air moving, reduce the humidity, open up the walls at the bottom to let air in and moisture out. Spray everything with bleach.

        2,000 dollars in the day or two after or 50K two weeks later.
        You chose. Insurance companies have learned to act fast.
        It is their money.

        Government gets in the way. The incentives are wrong.

      • September 2, 2019 4:30 pm

        So Roby “By that obtuse illogic the government should not be making plans to address Hurricane Dorian, because, you know – it may not reach landfall; or plan for any future possible natural disasters, because, duh, governments should mind their own business.”

        Is it governments responsibility to provide you with transportation for you, your family and your pets from your $1M home on the barrier islands of Ga, SC and NC, or is it their job to give you information so you can make your own decision to get in your Mercedes and leave before the storm hits?

        For some, government is responsible. For others, government is not responsible for much of anything other than national security. And even then, there are huge differences when some believe security begins with the border and others believe in open borders.

        Then there are those that understand government plays a limited role. Yes, water safety when supplied by government services or private suppliers with government contracts. But who should pay for testing if you have a well? And who should require you to have it tested and how often?

        If the government monitors meat packing plants, should they monitor you beef if you raise them and slaughter them yourself? How about chickens?

        If those that dont get flu shots spread flu to others, should we require everyone to carry certifications yearly that they are vacinated, or blocked from public places for safety reasons for others if they are not?

        Government plays a role, but it has become way out of hand with what people think that role is.

        How do you see governments role?

      • Anonymous permalink
        September 2, 2019 8:37 pm

        Ron, the anonymous post wasn’t from Roby…
        He writes at a much higher caliber of vitriol….

      • dhlii permalink
        September 2, 2019 8:52 pm

        If I have attributed an anonymous post to anyone particular – that is an error.

        We are all free to post anonymously.

        But anything you say has far more credibility if you are willing to attach your name and reputation to it.

      • September 2, 2019 9:06 pm

        OK Sorry Roby, I “assumed” it was you since your last post was from “A” and Priscilla responded previous to mine as an answer to “roby”

        Whatever, my comments still the same.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 2, 2019 8:46 pm

        “Is it governments responsibility to provide you with transportation for you, your family and your pets from your $1M home on the barrier islands of Ga, SC and NC, or is it their job to give you information so you can make your own decision to get in your Mercedes and leave before the storm hits?”

        It is Entirely YOUR responsibility.
        It is your property, your home, it should be your insurance.
        There should be ZERO govenrment disaster insurance. All that does is encourage people to build in stupid places, and make the public foot the bill.
        More and more government disaster insurance is a subsidy for the uber wealthy.

        It is not governments business to tell you whether to stay or go.
        It is not governments business to provide you adivce on the matter.

        NOAA should go. We had an opertunity to get rid of them a few decades ago.

        A caribean weather satelite was failing prematurely and there was no scheduled replacement for years.

        The re-insurance industry quickly came up with over a Billion dollars to privately build and loft a new satelite BEFORE the old one failed completely.

        But government changed plans and found a way to get a replacement up – because they did not want private competition. Weather – and Huricanes particularly are one of few places where government has a near monopoly and thinks it has a stellar reputation.

        But it is a task that we can easily manage privately.

        Who shoudl tell you when to leave your home when a disaster might strike ?

        Why not your insurance company ?

        They can monitor the weather, and they can notify you – by phone or myriads of other ways and they can tell you – that if you do not get out – you will have waived personal injury and death benefits. They can decide if they will pay to put you up.
        They can decide if they will insure your million $ barrier island home, and at what rate.

        And you can make intelligent decisions as to whether to build or own there and whether to stay or leave based on the actual costs to you.

        I do not care where you build.
        I do not care whether you stay or go in a huricane.

        What I care about is that whatever decisions you make the costs and benefits are YOURS not MINE.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 2, 2019 8:11 pm

        “By that obtuse illogic the government should not be making plans to address Hurricane Dorian,”

        Actually bother to learn something about this – governments role in things like huricance – particularly the federal government is nearly non-existant.

        We have had “natural disasters” for 4billion years, they have not required government.

        Government involving itself in natural disasters is extremely recent. Coolidge did absolutely nothing – nor did his predecessors, I do not thing that FDR, Truman, Kennedy, .. involved themselves in natural disasters.

        Even today – Government spends money but does NOTHING of consequence.

        We spent an unbeleiveable fortune on New Orleans after Katrina. You can not find evidence of that money. Smaller fortunes were spent after Sandy,

        More Recently both Puerto Rico and Texas were hit by massive Hurricanes.
        Billions were spend – much more on Puerto Rico than Texas.

        If you go to Texas – you will find no evidence the huricane ever happened.
        Puerto Rico still has not recovered.

        8B was spent on Haiti after the earthquake – decades ago – the country is still a pile of rubble.

        Government is totally ineffective in natural disasters.

        It is more of an impediment than a cure.

        HOWEVER there are things that do occur regarding natural disasters.

        Denny’s, Walmart, Lowes, Hom Depot – are preparing. They have had national plans for disaster relief for decades.

        They have moved in the supplies that they need. Every Denny’s has a disaster plan.
        They are prepared to open 24×7 in the event of a disaster. They are prepared to provide a place to stay – and hot food and coffee if possible, and sandwiches if not.

        Walmart has not merely stocked up on food, but on the specific types of food that people consume in emergencies – aparently Strawberry poptarts are very high on the list.

        Regardless the point is they actually KNOW what is needed.
        And they not only have supplies on hand – but they have reserves prepositioned already in trucks and warehouses just outside the storm zone and they will have those supplies available almost immediately.

        Home Depot and Lowes are similarly prepared – BEFORE and AFTER, with what people need to secure their property, and with what they need immediately after.

        And again they have supplies prepositioned outside the likely effected areas,
        And they dynamically adjust as needed.

        And that is merely the national chains. nearly all businesses do this.

        Some particularly small busineses and entrepeneurs will be transporting water, fuel generators, into the effected zones. Those people will likely “gouge” – which is stupidly illegal. Because the spike in prices immediately after a disaster makes sure that people take only what they actually need and leave some for others.

        If water’s price is fixed before and after a disaster – the shelves will be cleared by a few people who panic and water will be in short supply. If the price is allowed to float – people will only take what they need relative to the supply available and every will be able to get some.

        Regardless, prices will normalize rapidly – because those “national chains” do not gouge.

        They know damn well that a disaster is a time in which they are judged and the impact of that is for decades. If they deliver what people need in large supplies affordably – everyone will remember.

        A Texas Walmart after the last huricane had a mess inside the store. There were damaged goods as well as stuff in good condition, the aisles were blocked and it was impossible to open the store.

        The store manager took a bulldozer and pushed the entire contents of the store into the parking lot and put a “free” sign up.

        Then she quickly restocked the store with the items that were needed by people post disaster at normal prices.

        People remember who is there to help when they need it.

        Wise businesses know the good will they can build during a disaster lasts for decades.
        And ill will lasts just as long.

        Further even the people who work at national chains – are part of the communities where they live.

        Even those things that you think are actually governments job like directing traffic – are almost entirely handle after a disaster by volunteers – not government. There are just not enough police to do the job, and they have other things to deal with.

        The people helping you when disasters strikes – whether local or people coming from elsewhere – a disproportionate number of them are the MAGA hatted people that you hate.

        When Trump called Baltimore rat and trash infested – hundreds of his supporters mobilized to clean up parts of baltimore – not the city, not government.

        All the government does in the aftermath of a disaster is get in the way – and months later write checks – usually to all the wrong people. There is little more corrupt than the way government cash is distributed in a disaster – which should be self evident by the different ways places recover.

      • Anonymous permalink
        September 2, 2019 8:26 pm

        “We have had “natural disasters” for 4billion years, they have not required government.”

        Wonderful; you now surpassed Priscilla for asinine statements.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 2, 2019 8:50 pm

        Aparently facts are now assinine because .. Feelings ?

        Are you capable of making and defending and argument ?
        Or is all you are able to do is post slurs.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 2, 2019 8:20 pm

        Yes the US government should stop testing water and air quality.

        You are free to test the quality of your own water and air.

        I have my water tested every couple of years.

        I am capable of deciding what I need to do to my water to make it as I want.

        Further governments involvement actually makes it worse.

        We have a problem in my community because some local KFO’s are spiking problems in the water. But nothing can be done – the government approved them, and approved the way they are processing waste. You can not sue them – because since they have done what government asked they are protected from lawsuit.

        But everyone including the government knows they are the source of our most significant water problems.

        If there were no regulations – poluting water is a TORT.
        We could get together and file a class action tort and get them to clean up.

        But because they are protected by regulations we can do nothing.

        Government is not the answer with respect to the environment – it is the problem.

        Two of the top three sources of water polution are GOVERNMENT – directly.

        There are almost no incidents each year in the US of private septic systems poluting our water supply. Even though there are a massive number of private septic systems in much of the country. The largest single source of water polution today is municiple sewage treatment.

        That is a GOVERNMENT failure not a private one – yet we increasingly make it harder and harder to have private sepitc systems and require people to use polluting overloaded municipal ones.

        AOC and her pals do drink the water and breath the air – and the water and air are the worst where govenrment has the most control.

        That should tell YOU and HER something.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 2, 2019 7:39 pm

        CAGW is a religion, It makes little pretense of being anything else.
        It is much like the church telling Galileo that the sun orbits the earth.
        Facts do not matter.

        If it is “your truth” that is sufficient to use force against others.

      • Priscilla permalink
        September 2, 2019 9:26 pm

        I was listening to an interview with a meteorologist who studies hurricanes, and he said that the conventional wisdom that warm waters are causing more intense hurricanes is simply not borne out by the facts. He admitted that the idea of it made sense, but the reality is that hurricanes have not been any more or less intense over the last 20 years that they have ever been.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 2, 2019 9:37 pm

      • September 2, 2019 11:15 pm

        Dave this has been discussed many times. Joe Bistardi with Weatherbell Analytics, formerly of ACCU Weather, now with his own company and a regular on many different news stations has provided this info many times just himself. He also has a Saturday update on the subscription site that is free where he discusses global climate and constantly points out how warm in one part of the globe is cool in another. Right now sea temperatures in the southern hemisphere is below normal, while the northern sea temps are slightly above.

        There is also evidence that solar activity has declined over the past couple years and will continue to be below normal for its solar trends, but sea temperatures that control much of the global climate takes a few years to cool, which it seems to be happening.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 2, 2019 9:39 pm

      • dhlii permalink
        September 2, 2019 9:51 pm

        There is nothing at all happening regarding huricanes, extreme weather – either in the norther hemisphere or southern the atlantic, the pacific, ….

        The total number of large violent storms per year is nearly constant and has been forever,
        When the Atlantic is active – the pacific is quiet and visa versa.

        There is no difference in the numbers, there is no difference in the total energy.

        I found another graph that suggests strongly that huricane formation and strength is increased by COLD water.

        My actual understanding is that it is really really dificult to form a huricane.
        That the conditions of temperature humidity ets are very narrow increases and decreases in temperature result in no huricanes.

        There is a completely separate issue regarding damage and making landfall.

        The majority of huricanes and tropical storms do not ever make landfall.

        A huricane of mass shooting making landfall is much like a mass shooting – it is sufficiently random and low probability that spikes and drops have no meaning – there is no trend.

        US Huricane damage has increased over time.
        But adjusted for inflation it has decreased.

        Though there are all kinds of caveats – we are building better,
        But we are also building more very high value homes in more dangerous places.

        Further though Dorian still threatens, this is the first time in a number of decades that no huricane or Tropical storm has struck the mainland US during august.

        But one must be very careful with such statistics.

        The earth is HUGE, dozens of records that have stood for 100 years – are broken every single day – and have always been and will always be broken.

        There is nothing actually unusual about unusual.

        One of the things that has changed in my lifetime, is that the media is going farther and farther accross the world to fine “blood”.

        The world as a whole is getting SAFER, and the media must go farther to find the disasters and other bad stories to fill the news.

        We get a message that things are getting worse, when nearly everything is getting better.

    • dhlii permalink
      September 2, 2019 5:55 pm

      “They can use core samples and read the trees to get much of their historical info. ”

      Actually no they can not – or more accurately, they have NOT demonstrated the ability to do so yet.

      That is the entire point of the “hide the decline” critique of Mann Hockey Stick.

      The big deal is NOT grafting the thermometer record onto the tree ring record.
      It is that Man truncated the tree ring record when he did so.

      He did that because since 1960 The tree ring record has been “declining” – hence “hide the decline.”

      A proxy has little value if it does not CONSISTENTLY reflect what is really occuring.

      We can not trust that Tree Ring temperature measures 1000 years ago are correct if the same tree rings did not accurately reflect the real world temperatures in the past 70 years.

      This is a critical problem with ALL proxies – how do you validate them ?

      BTW not even warmists claim that Tree Rings are a proxy for temperature.

      Tree rings are effected by a very large number of factors – by far the largest being the moisture.

      Tree Rings are only usable as a proxy for temperature where NATURE controls the other variables – such as moisture. That is why all the tree ring proxies are in arctic climates – because the humidity in those regions has been close to constant for 1000+ years.

      but skipping past that – the infamous Mann Hockey stick was constructed from Tree Ring Cores from 12 siberian Trees – but that sample came from collection of tree ring core data with well over 200 trees. Mann (and Biffra) used criteria to select the specific trees they used that produced the results they wanted.
      There is pretty much no other subset of the same 200+ tree that will produce the same results.

      The entire sample produces quite different results.

      The critique above has taken nearly a decade to evolve. Why ? Because Mann/Biffra and company refused to provide their data and methods.
      All that skeptics knew was that they used some subset of the 200+ siberian Tree Cores – data for which is publicly available. Skeptics had to literally reverse engineer all the methods used and determine the specific tree core subset used. they had to test every possible combination of the 200+ samples to determine which exactly matched Biffra/Mann’s published works.

      This is NOT how real science works. One of the major problems with the politicization of modern science is that we have altered the scientific method.

      The most fundimental part of the scientific method is repeat ability.
      Past scientists published papers with data and methods and other scientists decided based on whether they could reproduce the results whether they were meaningful and valid.

      Modern Science has been politicized – this is the effects of the rise of post modern philosophy – which essentially rejects reality.

      I keep trying to tell you that philosophy is important.
      Ideas matter – when good ideas – sound philosophy is broadly accepted – humans throughout the world thrive.

      Western thought – which has evolved starting with the greeks (arguably much before), has lead to a gradually accelerating improvement of the human condition.

      One of the fundimental problems of the left is that it is rooted on an entirely different philosophical premise.

      We discovered – Correctly in the past century that there is no such thing as objective truth.
      Or more accurately that human perception is not the same as reality and that reality is perceived differently by each person.

      The left has falsely concluded from this that each different perception of reality is equally valid.

      The consequences of this are enormous.
      Steven Pinker does an excellent critique of “The Blank Slate” on you tube.

      The Blank Slate is the transformation of this idea that all perceptions are equally valid to biological science – and we see the problems with that in the news today.

      Most of us over 40 understand that a person is determined partly by nature and partly by nurture. But the modern left rejects this – Humans are a “blank slate” – everything can be programmed.

      If you are born with XY chromosomes – you can still be fully female.

      This concept that everything is perception, and everything can be changed by altering perception pervades the left. It is fundamentally a form of nihilism and it is inherently chaotic and destructive.

      It is why science has become completely unmoored. Because scientists have received an education that tells them essentially that reality can be whatever they want it to be.

      CAGW is true – because it is the reality they choose. Cherry picking Trees to get the results they want is acceptable – because it produces the results they want – and it is even from real data, if carefully selected data.

      I am not saying there is some great organized conspiracy.
      I am saying that ideas have massively pervasive effects.
      That the fundimental idea of the west – that humans have free will – is an incredibly powerful idea that has had an unbelievably positive impact on humanity, and that this left post modern concept that all viewpoints are equally valid is incredibly nihilistic and destructive.
      That is poisons everything it comes in contact with – including science.

      Further it explains why today with few exceptions educated – often highly educated people are the most out of touch with reality.

    • dhlii permalink
      September 2, 2019 6:17 pm

      “I have no problems accepting that the earth is warming. It has happened for eons,”

      In the broadest terms – the universe, the solar system, the earth are all COOLING,
      and that is inherent. It is rooted in the laws of physics.

      But even outside of the cosmic scale, merely looking at the earth – the trend in all but the shortest terms is cooling.

      Over the past million years the earth has been an ice ball more often than not.
      It is only within the past 150,000 years that the earth has been mostly habitable
      And even human recorded history corresponds to a 10,000 year period of unusual warmness.
      During that period – the spikes in human acheivement almost all occured during unusually warm periods.

      Prior to about 1970 – which is the earliest point at which human CO2 could have a measureable effect on climate, the drivers of climate were NATURAL.

      We can hindcast the past with a very high coeficient of correlation solely using 6 know astronomical/solar cycles. There is a problem with these in that though the correlation is near perfect, the mechanism by which these cycles drives climate is not understood.
      Variation in direct solar radiation is NOT sufficient to explain historical climate.

      This is the basis that climate scientists use to determine that 90% of “climate change” in the 20th century is “anthropogenic” – because they THINK they understand the impact of solar radiation completely and therefore whatever is left unexplained must be human.

      The problem with that is that does not work hindcasting the past.
      It results in past climate with very little variation – no roman warm period, not medieval warm period, ….

      In other words Micheal Mann’s “hockey stick”.

      If you accept that the climate of the past 2000 years was not nearly uniform until 1960 or that it varied greatly over the past 10,000, 100,000 1,000,000 years – then you have rejected modern climate science. Because modern climate science REQUIRES the past to be close to FLAT. if it has substantial variation, then there are natural drivers of climate that we do not understand, and therefore the conclusion that humans drive 90% of warming since 1960 has ZERO scientific foundation.

      This is also important because those 6 natural solar cycles started trending downward in approximately 2000. We are in the midst of a solar minimum that occurs about once every 200+ years. Early indications are this may be one of the largest minium’s of the past 2000 years. The earth has enormous thermal lag in some aspects. Cloud formation responds rapidly to changes in solar radiation, but ocean temperatures take decades to shift.

      Regardless, there are alot of less left leaning scientists who are more concerned about the possibility of dramatic cooling than warming. We do not KNOW what is going to happen.

      It is also possible that Human CO2 has substantial effect AND that the sun essentially going inactive has a negative effect and that the only reason we have had stable temperatures for 20 years rather than declining temperatures is because of human CO2.

      That is not my view, at the same time I do not presume to know absolutely the truth about climate. Regardless the possibility exists that in the near future we could be dliberately trying to massively boost CO2 to offset the impact of a quiet sun.

  53. Anonymous permalink
    September 2, 2019 8:45 pm

    The Oval Office Idiot’s infatuation with the NK’s dictator facilitated these advances:

    “Hard to know who deserves more credit: Kim for successfully completing tests of a rapidly-deployable solid-fuel rockets that threaten the region including American bases or @potus @realDonaldTrump for allowing it to happen.… via @nytimes

    • dhlii permalink
      September 2, 2019 9:12 pm

      “The Oval Office Idiot’s infatuation with the NK’s dictator facilitated these advances:”

      Talk about assanine remarks.

      Are you really saying that NK is getting WMD capability faster and better, because we are not ignoring them like we have done the past 75 years ?

      With respect to Trump – In numerous areas I would act and speak differently than he does.
      Past presidents have acted and spoken differently than Trump.
      I do not like the way Trump speaks and some of his actions.

      But the past track record of those who spoke more eloquently is not so stellar as to give meaning to any claim Trump is making things worse.

      North Korea is and has been a problem for decades. No one has done anything effective about it.

      The worst Trump could do is not arguably worse than what presidents past have allowed.

      I pray that Trump is actually effective with NK – because no one before him has, and arguably
      Trump is now having to try to fix this well past the time it is probably too late.

      In the end I will Judge Trump – in NK and elsewhere based on his accomplishments.

      Thus far though less than perfect Trump is doing quite well internationally.

      He has struck many trade deals that are atleast incrementally better than those of precessors – we are closer to actual free trade with Canada and Mexico.

      We shall have to see what happens with China – asia in general is a giant mess with many things going on. Trump’s actions to contain China are having small temporary negative impacts on our economy and stock market. but they are bolstering much of the rest of Asia.
      China is suffering from capital flight as factories and investment moves elsewhere.
      Nor does 100% of industry have to leave China to be effective.

      I keep reminding people that 1% 2% of change radically impacts nations economies and the viability of businesses.

      The rest of Asia is booming. Japan, Taiwan, Vietnam, Thailand, The Philpines

      China’s loss is their gain. This also radically alters the balance of power in the south china sea. Obama kept the US navy out of the way of the chinese – even in international waters.
      Trump has demanded the navy fly the flag throughout the south china sea.
      That not merely hurts China – but helps everyone else – Vietnam, South Korea, Japan, ….

      While we fixate on all the negative news about China – we forget that the rest of asia is benefiting from the US conflict with China.

      In the mideast – I wish we were OUT. But we are closer to that than we would be with any other president.

      The mideast is still a mess – but it is mostly NOT our mess.

      Trump has reduced our dependence on foreign oil, which has large positive benefits for our relations to the world.

      Russia – more specifically Putin is suffering. Your can credit Trump or not, but it is happening regardless, and it was not under Obama.

      Europe has lots of problems – they are not OUR problems.
      Whatever the problems of Europe with the US or Trump – they are tiny compared to their own internal messes.

      The worst rational predictions for the economy are better than under Obama.
      Regardless we have had more than 2 solid years that were better than any two year period under Obama – and those in the midst of total political chaos.

      I am of a split mind over the effect of Trump overall.

      On the one hand he actively fosters chaos, and too much chaos negatively impacts us all.
      On the other – though not doing as great as Trump claims we are doing 50% better than under Obama and bush.

      Maybe we would be doing better still without the chaos. Or maybe it is the chaos that gices Trump the ability to do what is making the economy better.

      I do not knwo.

      I do know that 2 years of Clinton would have been much worse.

  54. Anonymous permalink
    September 2, 2019 9:00 pm

    Memorial Day the federal US holiday for remembering and honoring the military personnel who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces was celebrated by President Trump playing golf at his hotel in Ireland the past two days. His resort, located far from Ireland’s capital city, is benefiting from the substantial fees – paid by US taxpayers – for Donnie’s golf dalliance.

    Brain Dead Trump enablers (his voting block) don’t find anything obscene is this scenario. Let’s give the Devil his due: in America this apparently is acceptable behavior. Future US presidents can count on substantial revenue flows if they own the right businesses.

    • dhlii permalink
      September 2, 2019 9:25 pm

      On memorial day 2017, Trump gave a speach at Arlington. On memorial day 2018 Trump gave a speach at Arlington.
      On memorial day 2019 Trump gave a speech on the Carrier USS Wasp in the pacific.
      On the 75th aniversary of D-Day – june 6. 2019 Trump was at Normandy.

      If he managed to stop by HIS golf course in Ireland for a round between the Pacific and France, does that piss you off ?

      If you wish to cancel the Secret Service and return to what was done for almost 200 years of US history – I am fine with that.

      But current LAW requires that a host of people follow the president wherever he goes.
      No matter who the president is.
      No matter what we are paying someone for that – unless we change the law.

      Obama went to his own home in chicago and the one he bought in Hawaii, and to frinds in Martha’s vinyard, where he know lives.

      All of this cost tax payers.

      A great deal of the cost of presidents residences is covered by tax payers – as the government must provide facilities to secure them as well as to conduct the business of the nation while the president stays there.

      So far Trump has NOT had the government foot part of the bill for new homes anywhere.
      Trump already has gazillion dollar shiny edifices across the world.
      He does not seem to need a new home in Hawaii or Martha’s vinyard with tax payers footing the bill.

      Absolutely I oppose tax payers footing the bill for any of this.

      So change the law. I will support you – so long as you change the law such that NO one gets to suck at the government teat – not this nonsense that only Trump can’t benefit from being president.

    • September 2, 2019 9:25 pm

      Whoever is posting this crap, get your facts straight!.

      According to CNN “Trump arrived at his Trump National Golf Club in Sterling, Virginia shortly after 10 a.m. ”

      Pence is in Ireland And he arrived about 8 hours (!:30p.m. edt) ago.How did he get a round of golf in when they are 4-5 hours ahead of us in daylight?

      I am not sure if you are educated in communication these days, but everyone (except me and a few others) have a smart phone. They are connected 24 hours a day. Trump knew the hurricane was moving at walking speed and might make it across one of the islands (THAT IS NOT ONE OF OURS) before he completed his golf outing, but days from our coast. If anything happened, it was a short trip back to Camp David or the White House. He was always connected to any news that would happen. And once he made sure all the assets were in place, was he just suppose to sit at his desk and pick his nose? At least he was not tweeting.

      But then Obama could march his ass across the globe and no one said a damn thing about that! AND OH, by the way, Obama played over 300 rounds of golf while president. So was he disconnected?

      I have many things against Trump, but being disconnected with the news is not one of them. In fact, I would prefer him to be more disconnected than he is!

      • dhlii permalink
        September 2, 2019 9:32 pm

        The facts are completely screwed up.

        For every “memorial day” since being elected. Trump has been either at arlington or otherwise with the military. In 2019 he went from the Wasp in the Pacific to Normandy for D day.

        I presumed that the poster meant that Trump somehow stopped at his golf course in Ireland on the way between the two. I have zero problem with that.

        But apparently the poster is confusing labor day – which is NOT military, and Memorial day, as well as Pence with Trump and Virgina with Ireland ?

        Or am I wrong ?

        But other than that the facts are correct.

        Regardless, facts do not matter, because “feelings”.

        Trump is entirely evil as far as the poster is concerned – as a concept.

        If he did not actually do whatever evil he was accused of – whether that is an actual evil or not. It does nto matter – because the accusation “feels” right therefore it is true.

        So Trump is guilty of a non-crime that he did not actually do.

        How is that different from saying “its monday” ?

    • Priscilla permalink
      September 2, 2019 9:58 pm

      “Memorial Day the federal US holiday for remembering and honoring the military personnel who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces was celebrated by President Trump playing golf at his hotel in Ireland the past two days.”

      Heh. If you don’t know the difference between Memorial Day (May) and Labor Day (September), I don’t think that we can take anything you say very seriously. Not to mention that, as Ron has pointed out, Trump is not in Ireland.

      My apologies to Roby, wherever he is.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 2, 2019 10:11 pm

        I do not know what Trump is doing today or where he is – and our anonymous reporter does not seem to either.

        I am not personally a golfer, but relaxing seems to be exactly what all of us shoudl be doing on memorial-er-labor day.

        Unfortunately I am working.
        But the work is fun.

      • Anonymous permalink
        September 3, 2019 7:29 pm

        Yes, I confused Trump’s earlier Ireland visit with Pence’s Ireland Memorial Day visit where he, like Trump, stayed at Trump International Golf Links and Hotel in Doonbeg, US taxpayers forking over money again to a Trump business 180 miles or so from Dublin (where previous US Presidents stayed for state related meetings), adding the additional cost of two additional flights to ferry Pence to Dublin and back.

        And you’re right, Pricilla, anyone making a gaff like the one I made shouldn’t be taken seriously. And I’m sure you’re going to hold others to the same standard. Like Trump confusing 9/11 with a 7/11 convenience store. And misstating the country where his father was born. And mistakingly mixing up Toledo with the Dayton mass shooting. Or his Independence Day speech when he praised the Revolutionary Army for ‘taking over the airports’ from the British. Or confusing the Mayor of San Diego as the Mayor of Oakland?

        But after his daily continuing barrage of mistaken mental spillage, you’ve remained mute about those gaffs, misstatements, lies, and idiocies, and instead keep offering him subservient loyalty. That reminds of a classic scene from the Danish silent film Häxan, about witchcraft beliefs in the Middle Ages, where the witch supplicants to curry favor line up to kiss Satan’s behind.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 3, 2019 9:34 pm

        I am all for setting rules for presidents, vice presidents, cabinet officials, congressmen, regarding their travel and other expenses where those are covered by tax payers.

        Nor would I object to radically reducing the government provided security for these people.

        Given the oportunity I will take a hatchet to government expenditures of all forms.

        I would not pay the president, vice president, cabinet appointments, or congressmen AT ALL.
        Those positions are public service – they are not “jobs”. You want to work for the government – work for it.

        You want me to bemoan the expenses that Trump and Pence are racking up – ABSOLUTELY! As well as those of Obama, Pelosi, ….

        But you want me to pretend that there is anything unusual or uniquely outrageous regarding Trump ? Nope. In this regard he is indistinguishable for presidents of recent past.

        Go ahead – reign him in. I am behind you.

        But lets not pretend it is about Trump.

        Do it because it is the right thing to do – for ALL presidents and politicians.
        And if you do not beleive that – then quit complaining.

        I am very much not interested in this – nonsense that Trump must abide by made up rules that did not apply to anyone else from George Washington or Barack Obama.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 3, 2019 9:57 pm

        We all make errors on occasion. I concentrate on trying to get my facts straight and care less about, spelling, grammar, or expressing myself succinctly. That is my choice.
        For the most part I enjoy writing comments. My one concern is that I will someday get something substantive wrong. Everyone makes mistakes and once in a while big ones.
        But I have zero doubt that the very people here whose posts are fact free, or have the facts wrong most of the time, will not EVER let me live it down if I make a small mistake on a fact,.
        No a doubt in the world.
        I expect to be held to a far higher standard by you and everyone who disagrees with me, then they hold themselves to.

        There are two problems with the error you made.
        The first is that the frequency and scale of errors that we make is and should be reflected in our credibility. As I said – we all make errors. Those who make them rarely are much more credible than those who do not. Those who make a few significant errors are less credible than those who make more insignificant errors.

        The 2nd problem is that your error is insignificant – EXCEPT for the importance you placed on it.

        The discrepancy between the facts you offered and the actual ones is only consequential because you are making a MORAL claim.

        It is of small importance whether this was labor day or memorial day, whether it was Trump or Pence, if your argument is that we are paying too much for the accomodations of our leaders.

        It is of great importance when you are claiming fraud, corruption, lying.

        When you make a moral claim – you are betting more than your personal recollection,
        you are betting more than your correctness on the facts, you are betting your own morality against that of those you are attacking.

        When you accuse someone else of a moral failure – you had better be right, you had better have your FACTS straight. Morality is not determined by feelings.

        Elsewhere today I read that the conflict we are having today is so bitter because it is a conflict at the level of first principles.

        This is also why the core problem is with the left.

        There is no one on the right, no trump supporters, no actual moderates, independents of libertarians who seek to change the foundational ideas that have shaped humanity for 500, 1000, or more years. The most extreme libertarian position, still rests on the foundation of western Judaeo christian free will – and the entire human philosophy – that has taken millenia to evolve, is the product of atleast 10,000 years of evolving global thought but is primarily today associated with the west.

        The conflicts I might have with conservatives or even actual liberals as opposed to progressives, do not threaten that foundation. At most they are about the edge cases – what rises to sufficient level to infringe on individual rights. But the fundimental presumption of individual liberty is shared.

        The left today seeks to destroy all ideas, all philosophy that is an impediment to acheiving their desired ends. Nothing is a legitimate impediment to getting what they want.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 3, 2019 10:07 pm

        The Trump mis-statements you reference – were NOT moral accusations.

        I would prefer that Trump gets his facts perfect. I would prefer the same of you.

        But all misstatements are not equal.
        If you like your doctor you can keep them – caused real harm to real people.
        Further it was a lie that people relied on in voting and other life decisions.
        And many of the people who relied on it got screwed.

        Who was harmed because Trump said Toledo instead of Dayton ?

        With regard to your mis-statement. You not merely alleged unique corruption, where there is nothing more than the status quo corruption that has existed for decades by those from both sides – in fact all the way back to washington. But you separately claimed that Trump had disrepected veterans.

        Both of those are MORAL claims.

        You are free to call out immorality. But you should do so carefully.
        The damage to you for factual errors is substantially smaller than moral errors.

        “If you like your doctor you can keep them” – was not just a factual error – it was a moral one.
        And that is why it is significant.

        The Trump/Russia collusion nonsense – which has always been a self evident fraud, but we are increasingly learning that those foisting it on us KNEW that, and did so to a far greater extent than we knew before – and THAT is a MORAL failure, not just a factual one.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 3, 2019 10:33 pm

        “But after his daily continuing barrage of mistaken mental spillage, you’ve remained mute about those gaffs, misstatements, lies, and idiocies,”

        If we exclude “lie” – which is another moral claim on your part, we can debate the extent to which Trump is more prone to factual error than say Obama. we can also debate whether the scale and frequency of those errors is different.

        I do not expect perfection – from Trump, Obama, myself, you.

        I do expect that the more important the fact is the more important it is to get it right.
        I also expect that when we are talking about more than facts – when we are talking promises, or coverups, or lies, that it is both important to uncover those, and important to be correct when making claims of moral failure.

        The “lie” regarding Benghazi – was not a factual error – Obama, Clinton, Rice, Powers new the facts – we now know that Clinton and Obama knew this was a terrorist attack and knew the group that perpatrated it during the attack.
        That lie was a moral error. It was a deliberate attempt to escape responsibility for failure, in order to win what was at the time a close election.

        We had much the same going on regarding Clinton and her email.
        We now know that Clinton and her staff were repeatedly told – this was wrong you can not do this, that there were enormous security problems. Eventually she fired the guy telling her that and continued to do it anyway.

        The claim that Clinton did not have intent – is garbage. Did she intend that the Chinese get classified communications – probably not, But she was told that was possible.
        More importantly she did not accidentally have a private mail server for government documents, she did so deliberately. She did not accidentally send classified information – she did so deliberately. This was a moral failure.

        Trump does lots of things I do not like, or that you do not like.
        He does not pretend to be “holier than thou”. He does not lie about what he is doing.
        He is not hiding what he is doing.

        Openly doing things you disagree with is radically different from covertly hiding the mistakes you have made.

        You can not even find a moral failure on the part of Trump that reaches the level of “if you like your doctor you can keep them” – much less Benghazi, IRS Gate, Fast & Furious, EmailGate,

        The wikileaks emails hurt Clinton because they confirmed what most of us already knew – she was immoral.

        Find an actual moral failure – not a policy difference.
        Find ONE and you are 1% of the way to proving Trump is as morally bankrupt as Obama or Clinton.

        This is not about “loyalty” – there are lots of things Trump could do that would get many of them to turn on him on a dime. He danced arround with Gun regulations for a few instants and saw his support drop by several points quickly, until he back pedaled.

        Almost no one is loyal to Trump.
        But we are enjoying the degree to which he drives the left to apoplecty.

        Your own frothing and foaming are entertaining.

        So we have switched from Hitler allusions to Satan ?

      • dhlii permalink
        September 3, 2019 10:39 pm

        So accusing everyone who is not frothing as you are over Trump of being Satan’s supplicants – that is your idea of how to persuade ?

        You do not seem to grasp that you went far past attacking Trump. You are attacking half of the country.

        So one came out today and demanded that no one wear red baseball caps, because they were being confused with MAGA hats and this was traumatizing people.

        I do not “support” Trump. Though there is a huge gulf between support and oppose.
        But I do actually support MAGA.

        I am happy that the Obama America Appology Tour is over.
        America is far from perfect, but it is self evidently pretty dam good.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 3, 2019 11:05 pm

        Here is another example of why you are not taken seriously.
        More than a Year ago The WaPo fact checker gave Sara Huckaby Sanders 2 Pinochios for saying that Comey’s actions where improper and possibly illegal.

        To anyone with a brain that was SELF-EVIDENTLY True at the time.
        Comey testified to congress that he had provided memos that he deliberately made of converstations with Trump to Richman with the intention that he provide them to the press for the purpose of getting a Special Counsel appointed.

        The IG refered Comey to the DOJ for prosecution for those actions.
        That is the closet thing the IG can do to indict.
        DOJ has purportedly declined to prosecute.

        The IG report not merely says Comey’s actions were improper, it says so by multiple standards and it loudly notes that his actions were a horrible example of misconduct to an agency with 35,000 people that he was charged to lead.

        Put Simply Sanders statement was accurate. WaPo’s assessment was ludicrously false.

        This happens so constantly, that almost no one outside the left pays any attention anymore to the latest “argh Trump” rant.

        Not only do YOU have no crediblity left – nother does WaPo or NYT.

        To the extent we have a consequential problem with “public deception” it is not with Trump.
        It is with the left and the press, and with you.

  55. dhlii permalink
    September 2, 2019 10:02 pm

    Bad things happen – and people die.
    It does not require someone with an “assualt rifle”.
    There are other ways to kill numbers of people.
    and if bad guys don’t, accidents and even nature will do so too.

  56. dhlii permalink
    September 2, 2019 10:08 pm

    It is time for Trump to pardon:
    Flynn particularly,
    and to commute Manafort’s sentence.

    If we are not going to prosecute Clinton and Comey for multiple clear violations of the law.
    For using the power of an appointed federal office for personal political gain, for lying under oath, they we can not be prosecuting people outside of government who can legitimately engaging in politics using their own resources for much lessor offenses.

  57. dhlii permalink
    September 3, 2019 2:00 am

    While this is MOSTLY about democrats behaving badly, there are bad republicans in this.
    As you listen to those early on defending this you should note that when this finally made it to court – and ONLY because someone refused to abide by the gag order the court found not only was no law broken, but that the premise of the investigation was rooted in law and crimes that do not exist.

  58. dhlii permalink
    September 3, 2019 2:46 am

    Dave Rubin interviews are usually longer than this – but it is still not short.

    But if you want to understand alot of what is wrong with the media, and silicon valley this will give you a clue. The best stuff is towards the end.

    but the begining is necescary to understand that the story is about the person who made VR into reality and was destroyed by the left, the press, silicon valley, facebook because he supported Trump in 2016.

    He was called a racisist, a homophobe a mysoginist. he lost he company.

    Today you have a choice – if you wish to accomplish anything, if you want to contribute, change the world, be judged on your accomplishments and you harbor even mildly republican thoughts – shut up about them, or you are done.

    You are only free to hold a controversial opinion if that opinion leans left.
    The oligarchs of the left are actually doing what the right has been accused of through history. Worse they are doing so badly and through egregious misrepresentation.

  59. dhlii permalink
    September 3, 2019 1:35 pm

    Your citing one source – there are many others.

    To falsify a scientific theory only ONE fact has to be at odds with the theory.
    Just one.

    CAGW has myriads of flaws. Does human activity have an impact on climate – probably, but the scale of that impact is not established as a question of science and is likely small.

    We talk about fossil fuels – yet Dorian has more energy than all fossil fuels ever consumed by man. The scale of natural energy flows is gargantuan and humans though in our present numbers are no longer unnoticable, are still PUNY in comparison.

    Much of CAGW depends on awe at large numbers – we likely accurately know the giga tons of ice melting in antartica and Greenland. But we ignore the larger amounts of new ice created each year.

    The explanation of different facts is often less than obvious – parts of antartica are rising – suggesting a buildup of snow and ice. Other parts are dropping – suggesting ice melting.
    But wait – it also appears that the continent as a whole is sinking into the mantle slowly – aparently because of the massive INCREASE in the amount of ice.
    Additionally for a frozen continent Antartica is surprisingly volcanically active.
    And this too melts ice.

    There are atleast 3 major ocean currents. Each has a cycle and they are almost never in sync. These currents have massive effects on weather.

    But the biggest issue with climate science is the presumption that we know much more than we likely do.

    I just read evidence that the electromagnetic field of the sun has a dramatic effect on the field of the earth. And that the energy transfers their are enormous – making the energy of Dorian look tiny. These are areas that we have almost no understanding of – and they potentially have massive effects on climate.

    We have only recently started to understand the link between solar activity – sun spots and gravity, and the orbits of planets. But we have known that sun spots correlate strongly with climate for more than a century.

    CAGW is crap science. But that does not mean we know whether future climate will be warmer of colder. My guess is colder. My guess is that solar activity is a big factor and it is declining. But my guess is just that – a guess. It is a guess that has more REAL science behind it than CAGW. Which is amazing we have spent many many billion dollars on CAGW research – which of course mostly found what scientists wanted to find. And yet we know little more than 40 years ago, and much of what we know is likely wrong.

  60. dhlii permalink
    September 3, 2019 3:41 pm

  61. dhlii permalink
    September 3, 2019 4:31 pm

    Someone asked for proof that Democratic candidates were talking about actually confiscating weapons.

    • September 3, 2019 9:15 pm

      Few believe me when I use the analogy of us being crabs in the warming water unnerved by the rights that slowly cook away.

      As they are stripped away, propaganda will be spread on how the government is protecting us.

      • Priscilla permalink
        September 4, 2019 12:56 am

        Well, Ron, don’t you know that politicians like O’Rourke just want to confiscate all of the weapons of good law-abiders in order to protect us from those people!

        And, I love the way that these politicians talk about gun “buy-backs.” As if the government sold them in the first place. It’s like a kidnapping being called an adoption…

        At least Beto pretty much called it what is. I suppose he doesn’t have much to lose, being that he’s under 2% in the polls…

      • dhlii permalink
        September 4, 2019 5:22 am

        Beto is not alone. Virtually every democratic candidate has said something.

        All of them want bans – even though they are clueless about what they are banning.

        Most of them want “buy backs” – they are not saying whether they are “manditory” buy backs.

        Voluntary buy backs are stupid arrangements like “cash for clunkers”.
        The government overpays and people tend to take the money and go out and buy a better gun.

        I have not verified this yet, but I heard reported recently that despite draconian gun laws – gun ownership in Austraila has returned to pre-ban levels.
        I am not sure if the law is being ignored or if the government is just handing out gun licenses like candy.

        New Zealand passed similarly draconian laws post Christchurch, and I am told that very large numbers of people are refusing to turn in their guns.

        Any law that is disregarded by as little as 10% of the population FAILS.

        BTW Biden openly admitted some time ago that government is NOT going to verify that people are not LYING on their background checks. The law enforcement resources do not exist to do so.

        This BTW applies to EVERYTHING – including clean air and water regulations.
        If you do not have the resources to enforce the law
        DO NOT MAKE THE LAW. All you do is UNDERMINE the rule of law and create opportunities for corruption if you pass laws that are not going to be rigorously enforced.

        If you pass a law that requires significant resources to enforce you are BY DEFINITON creating a police state.

        Law is not about “feeling good”. Either the law efficiently accomplishes a valid purpose – or the law is IMMORAL and anyone advocating for it is IMMORAL.
        In fact by advocating for “feel good” laws the left is actively undermining its own key principle.

        The left is fixated on absolute equality – particularly equality of outcome.
        The rest of us are focused on equality before the law.

        Any law that has/requires significant discretion is INHERENTLY unequally applied and has an unequal outcome. At best a law that can not be strictly enforced becomes RANDOMLY enforced – more likely it is used, to target the very people that the left claims to advocate for – the poor, the least well off.

        Do you think that Tom Steyer worries about “vagrancy laws” ?
        At worst the application is corrupt.

        Do not make laws you are not going to vigorously enforce – that is called EVIL.

      • September 4, 2019 3:03 pm

        Priscilla, just to be clear, I blame both the extremist left and extremist right for trampling on rights. I blame the right for forcing moral decisions on individuals and the left for taking rights away and forcing social decisions on citizens.

        Examples, the left, PPACA and forced purchase of a private companies product. The right, abortion and marijuana laws.

        We now have a very damaging law going through our state legislature and supported by the idiotic right. After years of losing revenue from the decreased production of tobacco, many former tobacco farmers invested into planting hemp once the feds said ok. The state did not have hemp laws. Much of the hemp is smokable and due to police not being able to tell the difference without testing, they have passed in one chamber a law where hemp can not be grown nor sold. Farmers have invested $100 thousands+ in growing this product since it is used for various mefical conditions and this coming year would be the first harvest.

        The police can buy mobile testing equipment as many states have done, but ours does not want to spend the money, so harm comes to farmers to assist police in an ever ending fight against marijuana that will never be effective.

        Hate to say it, but unless I live to 100 I will never see the reaction to the impact these changes will have on society, but I see nothing good coming from them, unlike liberals and conservatives supporting their social agendas.

      • Priscilla permalink
        September 4, 2019 3:18 pm

        I don’t disagree, Ron, but I draw a line between stupid and counterproductive regulation and the outright trampling of constitutional rights, which are considered unalienable. What Democrats are doing when they say that they will confiscate legal firearms, create gun registries for that purpose, is far worse, in my opinion, than passing a law that can be repealed. Protestors in Hong Kong are not waving American flags because of our marijuana laws.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 4, 2019 4:38 pm

        “but I draw a line between stupid and counterproductive regulation and the outright trampling of constitutional rights, which are considered unalienable.”

        There is no difference.

        All regulation and law – even legitimate law tramples rights.

        All bad law:
        is stupid and counter productive
        AND tramples rights.

        The constitution for the most part does NOT identify unalienable rights.

        In the constitution the term “priviledges and immunities” is used – deliberately.

        The 14th amendment DELIBERATELY repeats the term.

        Priviledges and immunities was used specifically to strongly assert that the privilidges and immunites clause in the constitution itself as well as the 9th amendment really mean what they say.

        Do not take my word for this – we actually have the debates over the 14th amendment

        And those debates are relevant to the question of citizenship too.
        I actually support “if you are born here, you are a citizen” – even for illegal aliens.
        But the issue did come up, and the authors and ratifiers made it clear – they meant people who were legitimately in the country and willingly subjected themselves to its laws.
        The did not mean the children of diplomats or others who were not here legitimately.
        We had actual open borders – mostly at the time
        But they still did not mean being born here alone was enough.

        I think it should be.
        But I also think the constitution should be enforced AS WRITTEN,
        and it should be changed when we do not like that.

        But back to “priviledges and immunities”

        The right to trial by jury is NOT a natural or unalienable right.
        It is a right created by the constitution.
        The right to the protection of the law is NOT a natural or inalienable right,
        it is a right created by government.
        The right to free speech, or to firearms or to property
        ARE inalienable rights

        Priviledges and immunities was used specifically to engulf ALL rights – natural rights as well as the rights we enjoy as a consequence of legitimate government, and the right to equally benefit from legitimate government. It was also intended to give more teeth to the 9th and 10th amendments which were very important to the framers, AND to the reconstruction amendment authors, but which SCOTUS has intentionally completely ignored.

        The constitution created a government with ONLY enumerated powers.
        IT made allowance for those additional primarily administrative powers that were “necescary and proper” to accomplish the ACTUAL enumerated powers, but still requiring the LEAST infringing means of doing so. All else was within the priviledges and immunities of citizens and outside the power of government to infringe.

        Put simply – for people – whatever is not prohibited is allowed.
        For govenrment – whatever is not allowed is prohibited.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 4, 2019 4:52 pm

        Gun laws have UNIVERSALLY failed even utilitarian requirements.

        A huge variety of different gun laws have been tried throughout the planet.


        That alone should be sufficient – no need for the 2nd amendment, no need for the 14th.
        No need even to recognize self defense as a right.

        Laws that do not provide a NET benefit are WRONG.
        Period. They are IMMORAL.

        The use of FORCE is NEVER justified if you can not produce a demonstrable benefit.
        There is no need for even a constitution to accept that.

        The entire purpose of govenrment is to use FORCE only for our net BENEFIT.
        Anything else violates the fundimental purpose of government.

      • September 4, 2019 5:39 pm

        Well, I view anything that infringes on anyones life that impacts individual freedom stupid and illegal, regardless if it can be repealed by congress or overturned by courts.

        I view the constitution as the law of the land for anyone living here legally, either a citizen or immigrant. ( Illegals are not covered in my mind). So we now have a president that supports policies where legal immigrants possessing honey can be locked up for 82 days without legal assistance. Who is next, you or I?

        This is what I call a crab in the crab pot. Who is concered when things like this happen? Bet few have any concern that someone can be locked up without recourse.

        Is this less egregious than government taking guns? I think this is worse since I view this violating multiple rights covered in the bill of rights, whereas guns is covered by one original and one additional after the civil war.

        But the issue is not if you or I find loss of rights more serious if due to that constitution or by law. It is that 80% of people care less or are oblivious.

      • Priscilla permalink
        September 4, 2019 5:50 pm

        Fair enough guys, but I still think that the right to self defense is a bedrock right that supports all of the others. ( Did Trump say he supported what happened to that honey guy? If so, that’s not good!)

        Now, I am not one of those who thinks that the right to bear arms is limitless, but I think that, if we agree to confiscation of legal weapons, or force gun owners to register in a federal database, we are fully cooked crabs.

      • September 4, 2019 6:15 pm

        Trump did not comment. No one commented. Just a few mefia outlets commented. I saw it on a Libertarian Nation Facebook post. No where else. Notice I had to find in on just a few media places that I could share.

        And that is the problem. You or I.might not be any different than the honey guy. How would they view you coming through customs with honey?

        But I am not one to ask about Trump and immigrants. He makes it very clear how he views anyone that is not white european ancestry blood people.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 5, 2019 9:21 am

        I do not beleive the president needs to individually condemn every racist act in the country.
        I do not beleive he needs to speak up about every single bad act by law enforcement.

        I would like it if Trump did, and I will hold him accountable if he defends this nonsense.

        But the corrections to these problems reside with the courts and legislature – not the president.

        We do however need to start holding those in power accountable.

        I do not know that he needs to go to jail – and I doubt that would happen regardless,
        But James Comey needs prosecuted.

        Not because Trump was his target – but because his conduct was illegal and wrong.

        I am less concerned about his “leaking” – though there is a very important issue their – and LOTS of law enforcement does this – when a cases is dead, they “leak” information to the press in the hopes that a news story will “make something happen”.

        That is exactly what Comey did, and it is what others in law enforcement do all the time,
        and it is mis use of the power of govenrment – and yes that is actually a crime.

        When you act inside of government in a way that abridges the civil rights of others – that is a crime.

      • September 5, 2019 11:37 am

        “But the corrections to these problems reside with the courts and legislature – not the president.

        We do however need to start holding those in power accountable.”

        Corrections will never happen because too few care. We already have a large portion of the country buying into anti-republic society policies and most everyone else not faring.

        Right not that warm water feels so good on our aches and pains!

      • dhlii permalink
        September 5, 2019 9:10 am

        Where things fit is complex.

        Even creatures we do not beleive have free will, or freedom are presumed to have a rigt to self defense.

        But no freedom exists without free will.

        Regardless, Self Defense is far far closer to axiomatic or a principle than a value.

        And you can not say – you have the right to defend yourself – but we are going to deny you the capacity to do so.

        This is what the left gets wrong about Citizens United – though Money may litterally be a form of speech it does nto matter if it is not, nor was the decision based on that. Nor was it based on corporate personhood.

        The basis of the decision was that you can not regulate speech through the back door.

        Government can not as an example constrain a free press by regulating paper, or radio, or the internet.

        Govenrment can not constrain free speech by passing laws that permit you to say whatever you please – on tuesdays after 3am in the shower.

        You can not regulate a right by boxing it in with regulations on the tools to effectuate that right.

        If you have the right to self defense – you have the right to the tools to defend yourself

      • September 5, 2019 11:26 am

        “Government can not as an example constrain a free press by regulating paper, or radio, or the internet.

        Govenrment can not constrain free speech by passing laws that permit you to say whatever you please ”

        Effective now. Maybe not once a Democrat president, Democrat congress and Democrat SCOTUS passes, signs and approves legislation that violates rights in the constitution, but interpretation finds different legality.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 5, 2019 9:14 am

        “I am not one of those who thinks that the right to bear arms is limitless,”

        We presume that everything more substantial and an AR-15 is not allowed.

        That is false. Private citizens have owned tanks, artilery, and warships.

        You can legally own a gattling gun today – so long as it is hand cranked.

        You can not own an automatic weapon – or more accurately owning one is very severely restricted,

        I beleive we have restricted explosive devices, but most “weapons of war” are not regulated.

        More problematic is that no one will sell them to you.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 5, 2019 8:59 am

        If Trump has something to do with the Honey case – then “fie on him”.

        but I am pretty sure this is just ordinary government stupidity having nothing specific to do with The president and more to do with the fact that law enforcement will do anything the courts let it get away with.

      • September 5, 2019 11:19 am

        Trump not directly involved, but his policies concerning immigration caused much of this problem. Then add the infringement on right we allow to go unchallenged, you end up with issue like this.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 5, 2019 3:47 pm

        I am not a big fan of the word (or concept) of “policy”.

        Government is about LAW.

        I do not always agree with the law.
        In fact I often disagree with the law, and I expect that we should all change it.

        But the role of the executive is to enforce the laws as they are.

        As best as I can tell that is what Trump is doing on immigration.

        He has done everything up to and including beg democrats in congress to pass better immigration laws. And they have refused.

        I see very little related to immigration as “trump’s” problem.

        Even Obama’s head of DHS has come out publicly – though quietly supporting Trump’s “policies” – because they are the law. Because Obama tried to do things differently, and it blew up in his fact, and in the end – except for the fixation of the press Obama did many of the same things Trump is.

        Familiy separation was implimented by Obama.

        There is not a single place ICE is housing immigrants that was not constructed BEFORE Trump. All the “cages” were constructed by Obama.

        I am fully prepared to discuss better immigration policy.
        I am fully prepared to let ALOT more people come here.
        Because I think that it can be done such that it will be NET good for US.

        But I do not have huge amounts of sympathy for illegal immigrants.
        Though I do have some admiration of them.

        Regardless, they are making a choice.

        They chose to leave their countries – I do understand why.
        They chose a long arduous and dangerous trek to get here.

        They all choose to stay in detention. Any of them can get out of detention at a moments notice – if they agree to be deported.

        They are not in prison – they can leave.
        What they can not do – is get into the US.
        That is all.

        That is something they have a desire to do. A desire I greatly respect.

        But they do not have a right.

        And government is ultimately about rights.

        Charity is a private not public obligation.

      • September 5, 2019 5:45 pm

        Well, a see I did comment about immigration, so I was wrong where I said I had not. Since it is impossible finding anything on wordpress after 300+ comments and it takes minutes to load all the videos, I am not accessing word press to see the complete discussion. But I will say that a president cant blame the predecessor after months in office. As much as immigration was in the news, its not that difficult to issue E.O’s to clarify how regulation should be enforced. Trump can not blame anything that went wrong with immigration, such as separating kids from family and not letting them see their parents for months. I said at the time if you come here illegally, then expect to be separated, but I never said I supported that happening for months without families seeing each other for konths, as reported by a recent report concerning the separated kids.

        You say there is nothing called common sense. I believe there is. Common in this definition is an acceptible belief held by a large number of citizens. Sense is the intellegence driving an acceptible belief. So in this case, common sense is separating kids from parents if the parents are locked up, but allowing visitation regularily to insure kids are not tramatized, as has been reported. Trump can not blame the lack of common sense on Obama since this happened in 2017-18.

        The honey man is another issue, but related. His directives concerning immigration severely impacted this mans rights. If they can lock him up, then you or I may be next coming through customs.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 5, 2019 8:36 pm

        I am not trying to blame Obama for Trump’s policies.

        I am merely pointing out that despite the rhetoric from the left and the media – there is very little substantive difference.

        Obama started out with relaxed immigration policies – and he ended up with a massive influx of unaccompanied minors and then with “families”

        Both of those changes were a direct result of his changes in policies.

        Way too many people fail to note that immigration for the south is actually predictable, it is driven by economics, and it is also driven by the incentives we create – even if unintentional.

        The ranting and railing of the left about famility separation is actually encouraging people to come and bring their families – because they beleive it increases the odds of their getting in, and they beleive that in the conflict between trump and the left – the left MIGHT win.

        Anyway Obama’s lax policies resulted in an influx that required him to reverse his policies – to actually become more draconian than before.
        That was necescary to stem the swell that the relaxed polices created.

        Trump inherited Obama’s more stringent policies.

        There are only a few things that are different from Obama.

        First the economy is stronger – and that is driving increasing numbers of illegal immigrants.

        Both Obama and Trump want to deal with “the dreamers” – Obama just acted outside of the law unilaterally, Trump is following the law and trying to use the dreamers to leverage better law.

        Trump has a bug up his ass over “the wall” that Obama did not.
        “The wall” Will have a significant effect, but it is NOT sufficient on its own. It is not an “answer” just a tool.

        Last Trump is NOW acting to try to reverse regulations and other decisions that made it more difficult to deport people quickly, that essentially produced “catch and release”.

        The existing law allows Trump to expedite hearings and deport people who cross outside of border crossings in something like 90 days. But congress will not fund enough beds to keep people for 90 days.

        Even Jeh Johnson – Obama’s DHS director has supported most of Trump’s policy’s regarding immigration. Because with few exceptions they are the same policies that Obama had.

        That is not “blaming Obama”. That is pointing out that the left and the media are hypocrits.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 5, 2019 8:39 pm

        I am not trying to microparse your comments and make accusations because your present comments differ from your past ones in some insignificant way.

        To the extent I would point any thing out – it is that just as you are not lying – neither is Trump over similar minor inconsistencies.

        One standard for all of us. I prefer that we do not level accusations of lying easily over matters of little consequence.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 5, 2019 8:55 pm

        Based on your own definition of terms – there is no such thing as common sense.

        What is commonly held is quite often NONSENSE.

        And what actually makes sense is not often commonly held.

        All we need to do is look at all the failures of “Common sense XXX laws”
        Common sense gun laws
        Common sense drug laws

        Preceding “Law” with “common sense” pretty much guarantess that what follows will be nonsense.

        We noted here constantly – that gun laws DO NOT WORK.

        In my book when you do something over and over and expect a different result – that is insanity not “common sense”.

        With respect to child separation.

        No, there is no “common sense”

        The entire arrangement is caused by our own existing screwed up laws.

        And whether they “make sense” or not – I expect the actual law to be followed not ignored because it is not “common sense”.

        With respect to “child separation”.

        What I would recommend would be keeping the family together, but “the law” prohibits holding children in custody for long enough to get through the deportation process.
        To keep the families together requires releasing the parents and that takes a process that could be completed in 90 days and makes it last over 2 years – the instant you release the parents.

        Congress will not change the law allowing families to be kept together, and will not fund facilities to hold the number of immigrants detained in a week for 90 days, much less all of them.

        Familiy separation is not “the right thing” – it is the only thing that conforms to existing law.

        Nor is your visitation idea “common sense”

        The children are placed in foster care. Foster care is always FAR AWAY from where these people are detained. Foster parents would have to transport kids long distances regularly,
        DHS would have to handle massive numbers of visitors.

        Regardless those being detained can end the separation in an instant by agreeing to return to their country. We are constantly forgetting – these people are NOT incarcerated.

        They are “free to go” at any time. What they are not is “free to go into the US”.

        Actual rights matter. There is a gigantic gulf between the use of force to interfere with someones ability to obtain something they want but have no right to, and the use of force to deprive someone of something that is theirs by right.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 5, 2019 9:06 pm

        Most of the “fact check” sites “claim” that it is false that the “family separations” occurred under Bush and Obama.

        That “fact check” is absolutely false.

        There is only a single difference between Bush/Obama and Trump regarding “family separation”. That is Trump is trying hard to 100% enforce the law that those caught within 100 miles of the board and NOT at a checkpoint, can be held until their 90 day hearing and then deported immediately. That is what the law perscribes.

        Obama and Bush excercised “discretion” and released significant portions of those caught at the border – especially those with families.

        One of the results of this was that illegals learned quickly that if they crossed as a “family unit” they would likely be released and it could take years to get deported.

        Almost no one seems to grasp that often “humane” “Common sense” creates incentives that make things WORSE. Not better.

        The only “policy” that has changed between Obama and Trump is the “Policy” of enforcing the law without discretion.

        I do not call that “policy” that is “the rule of law”.

        I think that a “policy’ of disregarding the law, is actually called “lawless”.

        But there is very little regarding immigration that Trump is doing differently from Obama – EXCEPT that Trump is not excercising discretion. He is just ‘following the law”

      • dhlii permalink
        September 5, 2019 9:08 pm

        The “honey man” never should have been detained. That was a stupid decision of individuals in law enforcement.

        The big problem has more to do with our idiocy and lawlessness with regard to drugs than immigration.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 5, 2019 9:01 am

        80% of us could care less – until we are the ones sitting in jail.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 4, 2019 4:09 pm

        I am opposed to any group that seeks to Trample Rights – left right, or whatever.

        At different times in our past – the right has been the bigger threat than the left.

        Today that is NOT the case.

        The most egregious likely potential abuses by the right are fundimentally continuation of a bad status quo. I will fight to change that. But the right is not seeking to burn down the house. The left is. The Left is seeking massive disruption. I would really like to see massive disruption. But all forms of massive disruption are not equal, and those the left seeks are pretty much the exact opposite of those I seek AND those the left seeks come at the EXPENSE of individual rights.

        I am not going to get what I want. But I can and should hope to see small steps in my direction. And that IS POSSIBLE with the right in power. Trump IS actively deregulating.
        He is “lying” about the scale of deregulation – but we really are seeing 5 regulations removed for each new one added, and we really are seeing way less economically significant regulations.

        I am not Ecstatic About Trump’s court appointments. But I do not think there are enough qualified libertarian candidates to fill available positions. I do however think that “outsourcing” judicial appointments to the Federalist society has been a HUGE success.
        The federalist are the most libertarian of all consequential groups within the law today.

        I am still pissed at 1 in 5 of Gorsuch’s decisions, and maybe half of Kavanaugh’s on controversial issues – but I am pissed at nearly all of Roberts on controversial issues.
        Frankly I am more likely to agree with Ginsberg than Roberts.
        And even when I don’t – her wrong decisions are better than Roberts wrong decisions.

        Regardless, my point is that the big threat to liberty at the moment is NOT from the right.
        That does not mean we should not keep a watchful eye on them – AND Trump.

        It does not mean there is not lots of the status quo that should be rolled back.

        But the left is not looking to roll back to greater individual rights – that is libertarians.
        They are not looking to protect the infringements that exist – that is conservatives.
        They are looking to impose a vast set of new ones – that is progressivism.

        And they are not even slightly bashful about it.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 4, 2019 4:19 pm

        Our drug laws are absolutely idiotic.

        This nonsense did not work during prohibition.

        It is not working today.

        What is pretty disturbing is that we had to pass an amendment to the constitution to prevent the volstead act from being declared unconstitutional.
        We have repealed that amendment.

        If the Volstead act was unconstitutional without the 18th amendment and that has been repealed – why are drug laws constitutional ?

        It is decades past time to GIVE UP.

        We have lost the war on drugs.
        There is absolutely no possibility of ever winning.
        We are not going to ever do any better than the moment
        and that is pretty bad.

        We are never going to reach some utopia where illegal drug use vanishes – or even diminishes through current means.

        We know what works – well, what works better.

        Portugauls solution does not work.
        But it is 10 times better than what we currently have..

        If idiots in your state are passing stupid hemp laws.

        Fie on them
        Fie, fie, fie

  62. Priscilla permalink
    September 5, 2019 9:36 am

    “He makes it very clear how he views anyone that is not white european ancestry blood people.”

    Intrigued to have you bring this up, Ron, and I don’t mean to put you on the spot, but how does he make this clear?

    • dhlii permalink
      September 5, 2019 10:37 am

      I am with you Priscilla.

      We are lobbing these stupid “racist” grenades all over.

      Disagree with anyone on anything – and you are racist.

      In some moderate profile conflict that was completely about sex, the result was the press repeating claims of racism – yet there was not a racial minority in the argument.

      To the extent that you MIGHT be able to argue that Trump’s immigration policies are “racist” – he is seeking to favor “yellow” people over “brown” ones. Though even that is not accurate.

      Trump has repeatedly said he is looking to increase legal immigration and decrease illegal immigration.

      There is not and will not be significant immigration of “white people” to the US.

      White Europeans make up pretty much an inconsequential portion of US legal immigrants.

      This debate is about very low skilled immigrants from central and south america vs much higher skilled immigrants from Asia.

      • September 5, 2019 3:00 pm

        Dave, I think you are jumping to conclusions. I dont think I said anything about immigrants and his racist speech. I did provide Pr iscilla examples that are a trend in Trumps comments that support my thinking. And this is something where my thoughts have gone from people claiming this are full of 💩 to there is something there. No one can be so stupid to continue making these remarks without there being something behind their comments.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 5, 2019 4:28 pm


        I can not find the microscopic difference between “racist speech” and Trump does not actually say anything racist, but what he says taken as a trend is racist.

        To me this is like the lefts claim that Republicans use “dog whistles”.

        Absolutely !!! And only when only the Cats hear them – the problem is with the cats, not the dogs, or the “dog whistles”.

        If you have to work hard to figure out the secret meaning of what someone else says – the problem is you, not them.

    • September 5, 2019 11:57 am

      Priscilla, I won’t go into all the detail statements and actions Trump has taken since becoming president, but will just list a couple. And put this in context with the reaction of the right when Obama took sides on Treyvon Martin and said if he had a son he would look like Treyvon.

      The first I will list is the case concerning the Latino judge in California. Trump did not react to the negative ruling because the case ruling was wrong, he attacked the judge because he was Latino.

      The second was Trump response to Puerto Rico and the hurricane. How much did he say the hurricane was devastating to that area and how we needed to assist compared to the amount of times he commented about how corrupt the government was and how much money they wasted, blah, blah blah.

      The third, and I think most revealing, is Trumps rallies. Word is that many Latinos support Trump, but not one of his rallies have been to any area that is not hugely white.

      And last, but not really anything big except for the native American, his calling Warren Pocahontas. One who does not view native American secondary citizens would not use this name to describe someone claiming to be native american since Pocahontas was an historical woman important in the history of this country.

      So do you want more because almost weekly he comes up with something that may not seem racist by itself, but when added to everything, there is a pattern.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 5, 2019 4:04 pm

        The latino Judge thing was BEFORE the election.

        Trump’s statement was not as bad as painted.

        If you think Trump attacked him because he was Hispanic rather than because of his decision – then you do not know trump at all.

        I do not know whether the decision was right or wrong.
        But I do know that Trump attacked because of the decision.

        AS to Puerto Rico.

        I am really really tired of this lame nonsense.
        1) The federal government should not have a role in natural disasters.
        2) Whether the federal govenrment has a role or not, the money and other things it does are ineffective.

        TX recovered – rapidly. Not because of federal money, but because TX is a functioning first world region – because it was in the interests of the people their to get back on their feet.
        Because they solved their problems quickly so they could go back to earning money.

        PR failed for the same reason Haiti failed and Somalia, and ….
        Because it has crap for institutuions and no amount of money will fix that.

        Every dollar the federal govenrment spent on PR was wasted – litterally.
        We can not find most of it. It disappeared in corruption.

        So why should we give more ?

        If you want to fix PR – cut them loose. Make they solve their own problems.
        They can, and will, when there is no one their to bail them out.

        And Sorry – Trump should be praised for Tagging Warren Fauxcahantas.
        She is a fraud. Her ludicrous claims to indian herritage perfectly represent what is WRONG with the left.

        If you want to call yourself a woman – you are a woman – even if you have a penis, and xy chromosomes.

        If you want to call yourself an indian – you are an indian – even if there are no indians in your family tree.

        If you want to call yourself black you are black regardless of how white you are.

        If I want to be rid of my “straight white male priviledge” – it is trivial.
        All I need to do is “identify” as a non-binary, cherokee lesbian – and my “priviledge” is gone.

        I find it absolutely hillarious that the left which fixates on all this discrimination is solving the problem of discrimination against women, and minorities by empowering white men to quite litterally take over minority status.

      • September 5, 2019 6:04 pm

        Dave, as Ricky Ricardo woukdcsay to Lucy, “Let me ‘splain somethin to you”

        1. There is a difference between what is and what should be. Right now it is accrptible behavior for the government to help out after natural disa sters. You can not defend a Trump negative by attacking the acceptible behavior. It is very clear to me today that Trump is anti-brown. And dont bring up employed browns because that is a buy productnof making a good white evonomy.

        2.Can you imagine the outcry by liberals if Warren had said she was black because she had some miniscule amount of African American heritage and Trump called her “Tubman”?

      • dhlii permalink
        September 5, 2019 9:25 pm

        Yes, there is a gulf between what is and what should be – in fact reasoning from one to the other is a fallacy called Hume’s Guillotine. Or the is/ought problem. And you are on the wrong side of it.

        What “is” is not “acceptable” or right. merely because it “is”.

        Government actions regarding natural disasters are expensive, ineffective, more often harming that helping and corrupting.

        There is lots of data on all of the above.

        That we “accept” something does not make it right, nor does it make it work,

        And yes, absolutely I can “defend trump” by attacking an “accepted” behavior – BTW accepted and acceptable are NOT the same.

        That is a “majoritarian fallacy”.

        Or as your mother would have put it – “just because all your friends are jumping off roofs does not mean you should”

        As to Trump being “anti-brown”

        AGAIN if you claim a moral failure in another, that is radically more serious than claiming a factual error.

        If you say someone is wrong about a fact – and you are incorrect – the world does not end and while your credibility may take a hit, your morality need not.

        If you say someone is EVIL – either you are right, or you are immoral.
        There is not much middle ground.

        As to “anti-brown” – Trumps support amoung blacks and hispanics is horrid.
        But it is approximately twice that of Romney. Trump’s hispanc support is about what Bush’s was and his support among blacks is double that of bush.

        Most of the people screaming “racism” regarding Trump are neither brown, nor black – though obviously there are exceptions.

        Is Trump racist ? Probably – in the same way that 95% of the country is racist.

        In the way that the KKK is ? Not a chance.

        Attacking Trump for the same meaningless racism that most people have – including the very people accusing him, is going to create a huge problem for those who think they are getting rid of Trump in 2020.

        You can not call Trump “racist” for holding views that 60% of people share, and expect to win an election.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 5, 2019 9:37 pm

        “2.Can you imagine the outcry by liberals if Warren had said she was black because she had some miniscule amount of African American heritage and Trump called her “Tubman”?”

        If you make a false claim of “victim status” – you deserve whatever anyone calls you.

        I back Trump 200% in calling Warren “Fauxcahantis” and I would note – Warren was attacked for that before Trump was on the stage.
        And she deserved it.

        If you claim to be black – when you are not – you deserve whatever epitaphs you are given.

        I do not care as an example if you were born with an XY chromosome and wish to live as a woman. Your business. I will likely personally respect that wish MOST OF THE TIME.
        But that will remain MY CHOICE. When you start showing up in children’s restrooms – I am locking you up. When you start lecturing teenage girls on the use of tampons – I am calling you out, when you start competing in women’s sports I am shutting you down, When you start calling your penis a vagina I am calling you nuts. When you start forcing women to wax your genitals – because you claim to be a woman – I am going to send you to jail – certainly not attack those who refuse to wax a penis because you call it a vagina.

        REALITY matters. FACTS “trump” what you call “common sense”.

        Though there are TWO evil things going on.

        One is the demand that we reject facts for feelings.

        The other is that the status of victim has become so important that people will lie to acheive it

        Jussie Smollet being one example.

        Neither of these two women are “black” – they are the same woman.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 5, 2019 4:22 pm

        If you can not come up with actually racist ACTIONS,
        or OBVIOUSLY racist words,

        When you play this – well what he is saying is not actually racist, but take in context with all the other not actually racist things he says it still adds up to racism – you are DESTROYING meaning.

        Trump is about as “racist” as tens of millions of his supporters.
        He is about as racist as tens of millions of his opponents.

        Are there ar few serious racists in this country – a few ?

        Does racism rank anywhere on the list of problems that even minorities should be concerned about today – NO.

        Regardless the “trump is a racist” argument – will guarantee Trump’s re-election.
        Calling Trump racist is calling half the country racist. ‘

      • Priscilla permalink
        September 6, 2019 9:39 am

        I think it is an exaggeration to call Trump anti-brown. I think that he is anti-PC, and, these days, being politically incorrect necessarily leads to charges of racism. He is also a product of a political system that encourages divisive rhetoric, and he has been uniquely successful at using it. But divisiveness and racism are very different things.

        I have a good friend, with whom I worked for many years. For the last few years, she has been a leader in a nationwide wellness movement, called GirlTrek. GirlTrek forms walking groups that encourage black women to get more exercise. The mission of the group is to reduce the high rates of cardiovascular disease in the African-American community.

        A few years ago, after seeing pictures of one of her groups on her Facebook page, but not knowing at the time that it was an organization meant specifically for black women, I texted her and said that I was interested in joining. Her response was that she would welcome my participation, but wanted me to know that I would be the only white woman in the group, and she didn’t want me to be uncomfortable with that.

        Long story short, I was uncomfortable with it, so I chose not to join, but I appreciated her giving me the heads-up, and she and I remain close today. I didn’t want to crash an organization that was clearly not meant for “people like me.” To be clear, I do not consider Girl Trek to be racist or sexist. Nor do I think that I am racist or sexist.

        But, here’s the thing… if the situation had been reversed, i.e. if I had been an organizer and leader of a group that was marketed specifically toward white women, regardless of whether or not the racial aspect of the group was based on credible health risks that white women face, both I and the organization would likely be branded as racist.

        Trump critcized a judge who belonged to an organization called La Raza (the Race) Lawyers, which advocates for citizenship for illegal immigrants. Granted, Trump was not clear that it was this judge’s immigration advocacy that he regarded as a conflict. Nevertheless, even after he clarified his tweet, why would Trump be called a racist for expressing skepticism of an activist judge, but the judge was largely spared from any scrutiny for advocating ethically-based immigration policies?

        Bottom line, I just think that intersectional politics, constant allegations of racism, and charges of white privilege have made the definition of racism so broad as to be almost meaningless. Like almost everything else in politics today, it’s made to divide us along racial lines.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 6, 2019 10:02 am

        There is complexity to lots of this.
        The simple part is
        just because you do not like the position of another person does not make them racist.

        Tucker Carlson just did a segment on the “racist trees” at some California community.
        The segment was totally insane – even Tucker started saying some nonsensical things – anthropomorphizing the trees.

        Trees are not racist – PERIOD. They have value – to humans. But they do not have RIGHTS.
        We need not care what the trees think.

        But that has how insane this gets.

        Trump attacked a judge who was hearing a case he was involved in.

        Attacking a judge is generally stupid.
        But it is NOT inherently “racist” to attack someone whose decisions you do not like.
        It is not even racist if they are actually right and you are wrong.

        Disagreement – even vigorous disagrement is not RACIST.
        Being Wrong – even badly wrong is not RACIST.

        Most of the time when I am at odds with Ron, I understand his point – even if I still disagree.

        But on this claim of – the individual things Trump says are not racist, but when you look at the entire package it is clear is CRAP, and it is WRONG.

        That is like saying – the defendent is accused of a crime.
        I can not prove that the defendant committed a single element of the crime,
        but taken a a whole all the things I can not prove, prove that he committed the crime.

        That is garbage.

        Nor is this about “defending Trump”.
        It is about we are headed straight for hell fast if we are lobbing racist had grenades at everything anyone says that we do not like.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 6, 2019 10:12 am

        Your “GirlTek” example raises an entirely different issue.

        Racism, Sexism, … are not in all circumstances inherently evil.

        A group that wishes to restrict its members based on some shared identity.

        Race, sex, or any of bazillions of other shared attributes or experiences – is INHERENTLY discriminatory, but it is not INHERENTLY immoral.

        We would tend to frown on an all white males organization. We have even in many instances made those illegal.

        While we should frown on those MOST of the time,.
        We should never have made any form of discrimination illegal.

        There is no rational basis for making discriminating against women illegal – that would not also make discriminating against men illegal.

        Canada is having a nasty mess because some MTF trans person is trying to get grooming salons that only serve women to serve him.

        It points out the idiocy of anti-discrimination laws – if you can not discriminate against women, you can not discriminate against men, and even if you somehow manage to distinguish between those – making one legal and the other not, then how do you sort out discriminating against men who identify as women ?

        There are differences between various types of discriminiation, but sorting out those differences is for people within their own live – not for the law.

        We choose not to join groups with only blacks or only women especially when those groups are formed arround that shared identity – because we are uncomfortable their.

        Those are private decisions.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 6, 2019 10:26 am

        The most fundimental issue regarding Trump’s attack on the judge is that it was ABSOLUTELY clear Trump was attacking the judge because he did not like his DECISIONS.

        So he looked at the judges other life choices and affiliations and attacked whatever he could.

        If the judge had been affiliated with NAMBLA – or NORML that is what Trump would have attacked.

        You can bemoan that Trump attacks everything that moves – particularly everything that disagrees with him. You can claim Trump should be more discerning and limited in his attacks. But the pattern is not that Trump is “racist” it is that he attacks everyone he disagrees with.

        His attacks are typically fallacious – ad hominem, they are logical nonsense,
        but they are not racist.

        Even being WRONG is not racist.

        What is wrong about our public discourse today is that one side does not tolerate any disagreement at all. They do not resolve disagreement with argument.
        They seek to pummel any dissent into silence.

        A survey just came out – 70% of college conservatives say that they must self censor in school or their grades will suffer.

        Ben Shapiro addressed a bit of that in a short video on Elizabeth Warren – who aparently taught him at Harvard – she also taught my wife at UofP.

        Warren has always been on the left. But Shapiro noted that when she was teaching law school her leftism was moderated by facts. Her famous paper on the effects of health care costs on bankruptcy – is remarkably good and rational. Her writtings as a professor disown the very things she is saying today as a senator. She explicitly wrote that what she now advocates for will not work.

        Anyway Shapiro noted that in college and law school he was a strong advocated for his conservative views in class – that he clashed with professors including Warren and they had excellent discussions.

        But when he took exams or wrote papers – he wrote as a flaming leftist.
        He made the point that tests and papers were submitted using student numbers and that he would have failed had he wrote what he actually beleived.

        We are increasingly that way – our public and private persona’s must be different.

        And voters are learning that the ballot box is truly secret.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 6, 2019 10:35 am

        If you want a solid attack on Trump – he does well by using the same tactics as the left against them.

        Several editorials have noted that Trump follows “alynski’s rules for radicals”

        Trump does not “argue” facts, logic, reason. He engages in ad hominem.

        He does exactly what those who oppose him do – except better.

        Elizabeth Warren chose to make her racial origens a public issue. Trump thumped her on the grounds that SHE chose.

        But ultimately whether Warren is part Cherokee or not has absolutely zero bearing on whether she is right about issues or not.

        The efforts of people to use “intersectionality” as a substitute for valid argument is WRONG.

        It should be ZERO surprise that the counter attack will be rooted somehow in their own intersectional claims.

        When you claim authority based on membership in a racial minority – pointing out that you are WRONG is not “racism”. It is not even racism if your counter argument is false.

        You do not get a free pass, an exclusion from the requirment that you make a valid argument because you have chosen to make your race, gender, …. part of the argument and a phony basis for having some authority.

      • September 6, 2019 11:36 am

        Priscilla, first, I do not want a Democrat president. I did not vote for Trump nor Clinton, so I have not voter dog in this show. So, when I say what I say it is not coming from any support position for Trump.

        I support most all of Trumps policies, even immigration, but the way it has been implemented is a disaster. And his messaging in the issue has fed that belief in me. The first story to come out about kids being separated should have had Trump on the phone telling DHHS managers to get the problem fixed with in days or they were fired! And his tweets should have supported that message. Voters dont know if Bush or Obama did the same. And after 18 months in office, it was no longer pertinent.

        I did not like Trump because he was the “bully bastard”. I did not like way, and still dont, like the way he belittles others. But I did not think at the time of the election that he was racist.

        But most people are not like you and Dave. Dave has an encyclopedic memory that allows him to pull data from years ago supporting positions of others that offset actions by Trump. You have a way to look at actions and not words. But I think I am closer to many voters where words are about as damaging a deeds. And his words TO ME show a racist leaning because there are no “deeds” that offset the words.

        But there might be another issue. 25% far right, 25% fat left, both active controlling the message and messenger, 50%:turned off and tuned out ( accepting what they are given by 25%)

      • dhlii permalink
        September 6, 2019 12:20 pm

        Your beliefs are your beliefs – and your feelings are your feelings.

        I do not understand them. but they still are what they are.

        As to how he has “implimented”…

        He has to a large extent done what Obama did, he has followed the law more closely, and he has done what those who voted for him expected.

        As to messaging – no he has not done so in a way in which those on the left and in the media would be happy – is that a surprise ?

        Do you think that the media would have been kinder to a president Cruz ?

        President Jeb would not have done what Trump promised – the Press still would have savaged him, but not as badly.

        I have very little interest in the tribal spats between Trump and the media.
        They deserve each other and I prefer not to listen.

        There is no “getting the problem fixed” with respect to “family separation”.
        If you follow the law – families will be separated. PERIOD.

        If you do not like that – change the law. That is CONGRESSES Job not Trump’s.

        Immigration is a complex mess – the law is crap. But Trump’s legitimate choices are relatively simple and narrow.

        And even if I do not like the law – I want Trump to follow it.

        If we had honest press – that is where this would have ended.

        I absolutely agree that Trump “throws his weight arround” and I do not like that.
        That is why I am neither a billionaire nor president.

        I get very upset with Trump – when he “bullies” people who are not really part of the process.
        He sort of stepped in it with the Gold Star families – while they were engaging in politics, we still give latitude to people who have made sacrifice for the country – we do not agree, we do not do as they say, but we listen politely and do not attack them.
        The same with the families of children shot at Sandyhook or Parkside.

        But if you have a bully pulpit at CNN to attack Trump – I have zero problems with his attacking you back.

        I do not care if the “”heavyweight” engage in their own MMA cage match with each other.

        Trump rarely makes the mistake of “bullying” people who are not themselves in the business of throwing their weight arround. And he rarely attacks them first.

        Put simply, while I do pay more attention to that than I should, I just do not care in the way you do.

        BTW – while I have a pretty good memory. Mostly I just live in the internet ERA.

        Everyone in my family is adept at their own “fact checking”.

      • September 6, 2019 12:50 pm

        Dave, “As to messaging – no he has not done so in a way in which those on the left and in the media would be happy – is that a surprise ?”

        Your micro-tunnel vision misses a macro-huge problem!

        Yes, the left is not happy. Yes his base is happy!

        BUT the happy and unhappy ARE NOT the ones that will reelect Trump or elect Biden/Sanders/Warren. They are not you or Priscilla type voters. They are the ones like me who had to make a decision to vote third party, hold their noses and pick between two awful choices ( in their mind) or not vote at all. They were the few tenths of a percent in three states that put Trump in office.

        They, not his 35% base he keeps energized, are the ones that are going to say ” I cant stand anymore of this crap in the White House” and will vote for one of the Three Stooges on the left. It takes very little to shift <.5% of the vote and that is the percent that could change control.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 6, 2019 6:57 pm

        Despite what the media says everything sane I am reading says this will be a low turnout election. Further there is lots of evidence that the democrats numbers from 2016 and 2018 are the best they can possibly do. Without an Obama on the ticket – and even he was weak in 2012, there is no charasmatic democrat draw.

        Trump appears to be doing poorer with white women than in 2016, but better with white men. He is also doing badly with minorities – but BETTER by alot than Romney or McCain and as well with hispanics as bush and better with blacks.

        You say moderates with decide 2020 – not if they stay home.

        Further, lots is made of the effect of Stein and Johnson in 2016.

        It is near certain that Clinton would have gotten near 100% of stein voters.
        But Trump would have gotten 65% of Johnson voters, and it there is no third party draw taking 6M votes from D’s and R’s – Trump picks up almost 2M votes.

        When you say Trump keeps his base – that is not 25% of voters that is very near 100% of those who voted for Trump in 2016.

        He will lose a few, but he is near certain to pick up even more.

        The democratic base meanwhile is in trouble. You are seeing all the candidates go hard left right now – because D’s have a serious danger of alienating their base by not being far enough to the left.

        But by the time of the general, they will have driven many moderate D’s to sit this out.

        There is a further HUGE factor in 2020.

        Like it or not Trump will be the “safe Choice” – he was NOT in 2016.
        In 2020 he will be an absolutely known quantity.

        Better the devil we know than the one we do not.

        You can not extrapolate from Trump’s negatives to voting.

        Finally 2020 is looking to be a replay of

        Dems are going left. History tells us that whenever they do – the lose in a landslide.

        Absent the economy tanking in 2020 Trump wins in a landslide.

        I know that is not “conventional wisdom” – though lots of credible political analysts are saying that. The atlantic did a story interviewing all the losing 2016 Republican campaign managers about the democratic candidates. They all thought this would be a “fun” election.
        They were handicapping the democratic primary like crazy.
        But they were 100% agreed on the fact that no democrat will be Trump in 2020.

        BTW, I may not vote for him – but I want Trump to win in 2020 – this Trump exactly as he is.
        That is the only thing I think that will shock democrats enough to get their act together.

        I think the democratic party is in danger of becoming irrelevant. They have gone too far left.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 6, 2019 7:05 pm

        Historically in the past 100 years Voter turnout averages at 58%

        Since Nixon only 3 elections have been over 58% turnout
        Bush Kerry, Obama McCain and Trump – Clinton.

        Turn out losses will almost entirely effect democrats.

        Democrats MUST get higher turnout than 2016 to beat Trump – and that is NOT likely to happen.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 6, 2019 12:39 pm

        You made a “whataboutism” argument and I want to address that.

        If something is today – it was wrong in the past.
        The fact that Obama did it too does not make it right.

        But noting that something was done by Obama, and Bush and …
        DOES highly the incredible hypocracy of those doing the attacking.

        I really like Glenn Greenwald – even though I sometimes disagree,
        because his positions on issues do not change based on who is in office or power.

        He has taken Bush, Obama, and Trump to task for exactly the same misconduct.

        If you were not speaking out about some issue that you are flaying Trump over – 4 years ago when Obama was doing it. That means that:

        Either you are unbelivably hypocritical,
        or the issue is not truly as important to you as you pretend.

        Most of the issues democrats current;y fixate on regarding immigration are NOT that important.

        Family separation can be fixed 3 ways – not one of which involves Trump.

        Do not bring your family to the US illegally.
        When you do and you are caught – agree to leave on your own, and your family will be deported with you.
        Congress can change the law. Currently the law requires those caught within 100 miles of the border to be detained until their initial disposition hearing. If that is done, 95% of the time they will be deported. Other law prohibits children from being detained in the facilities that hold adults for more than 14 days.

        Yes, Obama “solved” the problem by exercising discretion and ignoring the law and releasing both parents and children.

        This resulted in an increase of people bringing their families to the US illegally.

        Incentives actually matter.

        What Trump is doing may sound “mean” but I do not get bent out of shape over people having to face the KNOWN consequences of their own actions.
        Particularly where these illegal immigrants can re-unite their families trivially by agreeing to return home.

        I have far more problems with people comparing detention to “concentration camps”

        These do not even compare to prisions.

        If you are sent to prison you stay until your time is up.

        You end up in a detention center BY CHOICE.

        You did not have to enter the country illegally, and you are free to leave.

        Not having the choice that you want is NOT interfering in your rights.

        I want our immigration system to be differnet than it is.

        But if I succeed in getting a system that is as I want it, I do not want the next president or the own after to ignore the law and do as they please.

        If I succeed in changing the law to be as I think it should – I do not want to have that prove fruitless because some president or courts substitutes their whim for the law.

        That is the rule of law. It is also why the courts are obligated to originalism.

        They are neither allowed to give me the world I want – without requiring that I change the law to reflect my wishes, NOR to take from me law that I fought to get – because they think it should be different.

        Lawmaking is supposed to be hard – but when we get it right it is also supposed to be durable. and hard to change.

      • September 6, 2019 2:49 pm

        Dave “Either you are unbelivably hypocritical,
        or the issue is not truly as important to you as you pretend.”

        Yes this is correct, but add one more.
        3. The issue was not discussed nationally by the press that identified the issues as they are now being covered, leaving individuals uninformed.

        So the hypocrits are those covering the subject since it was not important when Obama was president, but it is now. I had no idea as to the extent and lenght of time kids were separated. I still have no idea the extent of the problem, but there are way too many reports about these kids for it not to 7be disturbing.

        And yes, the truth lies between AP/NPR/MSNBC/NY Times and For news/National Review/Breitbart and what these outlets report. But the complete truth is either not published or so limited in outlets one has to have investigative abilities to find it.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 6, 2019 7:17 pm

        Trust of Trump is low.
        Trust of the press, the left government, democrats, …

        is all far lower still.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 6, 2019 7:20 pm

        Voting is not unfortunately determined by informed voters.

        At the same time – more so than ever before, people are enjoying the show on the news, but paying no attention when they vote.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 6, 2019 12:43 pm

        Have the actions of the US government or the Whitehouse been more “racist” since Trump was president than before ?

        You say we only have words – that is false.

        Trump has probably pardoned more black and brown people than Obama.

        Minorities are doing disproportionately better under Trump than Obama.

        There is no evidence of ACTUAL as opposed to made up increases in discrimination under Trump.

      • September 6, 2019 3:00 pm

        Dave, you are totally missing the point.

        I dont give a 💩 what the actions are. Trump is not communicating his actions. His administration is not communicating his actions. Not one media outlet the masses read or listen to is communcating his actions other than Fox Business and that is economics.

        What that 1%-2% of voters see and hear that make the difference in 3-4 states he needs to win only see what he says or tweets. And too much leans toward a racist position. Maybe for you, it does not. You are in his 35% base. But its the 1%-2% that swing that hears what they were always told not to say by their parents and have told their kids to avoid saying. And it is not a slip, its constant, so he means to tweet what he tweets!

  63. Priscilla permalink
    September 6, 2019 1:18 pm

    Ron, I agree that the Trump administration has had any number of disastrous roll-outs, beginning with the original travel ban on the 7 countries identified by Obama as “countries of concern”. I think that probably 40% of this has been Trump’s fault and 60% has been due to inaccurate, and sometimes flat-out false, reporting. How many people, for example, still believe AOC’s lie that people in migrant shelters have to drink toilet water?

    I have real concerns about the 2020 election, because there is not a single Democrat that I could support, even if I wanted to. Biden is clearly not up to the job, and the rest of the serious contenders are only slightly to the right of the Communist Party.

    A big problem, as I see it, is that Trump is damned if he does and damned if he doesn’t. Even when everything goes perfectly, the Democrats and the media will create some bogus narrative that will distract from any positive result. An example today is the huge brouhaha over the hurricane map with the Sharpie markings, when real story should be the thorough and excellent preparation for a dangerous storm, and the fact that the governor of the Bahamas has publicly thanked the US for coming to its aid and saving many lives.

    The other problem is one on which I often agree with you, which is that Trump has a tendency to step on his own successes. I attribute that to the fact that he knows that, if he doesn’t say something positive, no one in the press will. But he’s too often inarticulate and comes off like an oaf. He also seems incapable of just letting something go, even if pushing back may do more harm than good.

    The fact that all of the Democrats are now talking about confiscating guns, instituting single payer healthcare, forgiving student loans, restricting and punishing private business in the name of climate change, packing the Supreme Court, eliminating the Electoral College, etc. just makes Trump’s mistakes that much more concerning, because so many people dread the potential of irreparable damage to our republic.

    • dhlii permalink
      September 6, 2019 7:16 pm

      No I do not think Trump has had “disasterous rollouts”

      I think and outraged left has found outrage in everything.

      The initial travel ban was not a disaster – and but for wing nut judges it would have survived.
      The revised Travel ban reflected ZERO changes in substance.

      I would further note that the media has rapidly decreasing influence.

      The war between Trump and the media has been a major net loss for the media.

      They have trashed their credibility and influence.
      We may find them entertaining – but we are more interested in the show then the issues.

      The media could report that Trump murdered someone in central part in front of 10000 witnesses – everyone would listen fascinated,. More than half the country would not beleive it.

      Further Trump has a significant number of potential vicrtories teed up between now and the election. He will not get all of them, but he will get some

      He can survive 1000 sharpie gates. The left can not survive Trump suceeding .

  64. September 6, 2019 10:08 pm

    I would not take this serious except I get tweets from Trump. I just ignore most of them, but after my feed was filled with crap about Alabama, I began wondering why Alabama was even being mentioned with Hurricane Dorian. This seems to answer one question. Why was that important for Trump to waste so much time on it.

    Please read and respond with your thoughts. Mine is he may not be a mental case, but he is the epitome of that horrendous business leader that goes ballistic when business deals go bad, blames everyone else, even when the decisions made were their own.

    How much smoke does there need to be before a fire is detected?

    • Priscilla permalink
      September 7, 2019 8:39 am

      Again, according to the Associated Press, it appears that the president was not wrong when he tweeted that the hurricane could impact Alabama:

      “The latest defense came out Friday evening, when the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration issued a statement from an unidentified spokesman stating that information provided by NOAA and the National Hurricane Center to the president had demonstrated that “tropical-storm-force winds from Hurricane Dorian could impact Alabama.” The advisories were dated from last Wednesday, Aug. 28, through Monday, the statement read.”

      This sort of thing happens all the time. Trump tweets something informative, based on briefings that he gets as POTUS. The news media hasn’t heard about it, checks with their “sources,” (who obviously don’t know much), and go right to their standard BS about Trump’s mental state: “He’s losing it!” “He’s a tyrant!” “He won’t admit he’s wrong!”

      And then…whaddya know? It turns out that he was right all along. But the lies did their work, because only a fraction of the people who now believe that Trump is a raving nut, will read the report 2 days later, that the Weather Service WAS warnig of impacts to Alabama.

      If he hadn’t repeated the warning, and Alabama suffered damage, we would have seen a Katrina-like response, no doubt.

      • Priscilla permalink
        September 7, 2019 8:46 am

        The AP even slants its correction story, and continually repeats the lie that Trump made up the information about Alabama.

        Until the end when we read:

        “This story has been corrected to reflect that Alabama was included in charts mentioning wind speed probabilities from August 28 to August 31. The story previously said it was not.”

      • dhlii permalink
        September 7, 2019 7:58 pm

        The entire story should be pulled and replaced with

        “Once again we lied about Trump and got caught”

        Except no one is paying attention – mostly.

        But come Nov. 2020 voters will KNOW three things.

        the past 4 years have been better than the prior 16.
        The next 4 are likely to be better than the prior 16.
        Lots and lots of things the Press and the left have claimed regarding Trump have been false.

      • September 7, 2019 10:12 pm

        dave “The entire story should be pulled and replaced with”

        The entire story would never have been a story had Trump kept out of the lmelight trying to be important. Like I said, He could have said this is big, follow local emergency services instructions and been done with it.

        but no, he had to stick his nose in and like the bully at school, when you can make the bully look bad, you goad them into making an ass out of themselves, just like the media has done here.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 9, 2019 3:57 am

        If Trump had said nothing – the story would be Trump does not care about the potential victims of Dorian. Or some other such nonsense.

      • September 7, 2019 12:49 pm

        This is very interesting exercise taking an article concerning Trump reactions and behaviors and asking for others to read and analyze.

        i read the article and ask why would the leader of 300+M people and the most powerful country spend so much time on insignificant information that no one other than himself and a few others are paying attention to. I asked why demean yourself getting into a pissing contest while men and women are still dying in Afghanistan and I have seen nothing where Trump commented about Sgt Borreto Ortez death. Could be its because he is Puerto Rican and ” not really American”. I can find nothing about this while he was obcessed with Alabama.

        You and Dave read the article from the issue of the information about Alabama being true or not. Ya’all looking at the “”nitty gritty” detail while I am looking at the reaction to many of the details as well as the importance of the details.

        Kind my career. While I had accountants working with the numbers and developing the detail, I was.looking at the financial reports and what the results meant for the future. I did not get into the “nitty gritty” unless it had a significant impact on the results.

        To me, bitching about a meterological forecast days in advance that did not come to be is a totally insignificant occurance. When you get days out, the spaghetti models have little in common.

      • Priscilla permalink
        September 7, 2019 1:18 pm

        I think that your point is well taken , Ron, and in another administration, it would be bizarre for a POTUS to argue the veracity of such a minor detail.

        But, in another administration, the story would have been how thorough and well coordinated the storm preparation was, not that the President “lied” about the hurricane possibly affecting Alabama.

        If Trump did not push back, there would be an attempt to turn
        “Sharpiegate” into a story of incompetence in the face of potential natural disaster. Since he did push back, the story is that he’s a mental case.

        Trump canceled a foreign trip, stayed engaged with his DHS Secretary and the NWS, used his giant Twitter following to keep the public informed of the dangers of this storm…and he’s called out as a poor leader?

        Damned if he does and damned if he doesn’t. As far as I’m concerned, he handled this just fine. “Turning the other cheek” would be interpreted as weakness, so might as well push back.

      • September 7, 2019 6:04 pm

        Well, In my view, in any other administration the president would not have stuck his nose into the minute details like they were experts in meteriology. They would have said this is a major storm, then documented all the preparation and said to stay informed by the weather updates by the weather service and local channels. They would.not place themsekves into a pissing contest, especially knowing the press was going to nit pick every word or action.p

        This guy can not go a day without being the expert in everything from astrology to zoology and commenting on his expertise daily.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 7, 2019 8:35 pm

        Any statement that begins in any other presidency is inherently wrong regarding Trump.

        Obama got massive media attention – alot of it negative despite the press and the left fawning over him.

        One a quiet news Day Trump is getting 3 times the coverage that Obama did on peak days.
        And it is nearly all negative.

        I do not understand why you pay much attention to the traditional press any more.

        You can not make rational decisions based on the news. Probably you never could, but you certainly can not now.

        Democrats hold a climate summit proposing to take $93T from us to fight something that has far less chance of proving correct than Dorian reversing course and heading to Alabama.

        I can not help but beleive if Trump favored “Climate Change” the press and the left would feel bound to oppose.

      • September 7, 2019 10:40 pm

        Dave “You can not make rational decisions based on the news. Probably you never could, but you certainly can not now.”

        Thanks for clearing this up. I was wondering why I was aimlessly wandering around mumbling to myself and now I know. Not everyone is as smart and informed as you to understand fake news.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 9, 2019 4:37 am

        Ron, you understand that the mdeia today is crap – as well as I do.

        This is not about being informed.

        This is just about that you keep getting suckered by them anyway.

        That and the BIG thing I have gotten from the Trump presidency – is the 24hr news cycle is MEANINGLESS.

        With few exceptions the only people paying attention to the news are those who want to beleive what reporters are saying.

        Those people make up a small portion of us.

        They are driving Democrats. They are driving much of the media.
        They are driving our college students, and our colleges.

        But that is pretty much it.

        You are upset with Trump – because you think that he is going to flip the country democrat.

        Yet, you have said – your not voting for any current democrat.
        Your not voting for Trump either.

        To win the election – democrats have to do more than get you to stay home or vote 3rd party, they have to get you to vote for a democrat.

        2020 could go myriads of ways. But what I see – not at this instant – though almost inevitably, is that Trump’s core is going to VOTE. That core overlapps with the traditonal republican core but it is not quite the same – it is also LARGER than the traditional republican core and these people are LOYAL. And despite appearances it is LARGER than the current democrat base – which will also likely vote.

        Trump lost some republicans from his CORE but gained blue collar democrats in critical states.

        Democrats are merely shrinking their base – to only the most dedicated leftists.

        I like people like Johnathan Goldberg and George Will. These are close to my people.
        But they do not grasp that for all Trump’s problems – he is still much better than any democrat, and most republican candidates.
        Jeffrey Tucker – an influential anarcho capitalist – a never trumper in 2016 has noted that While far from perfect, Trump has been the best president for libertarians since reagan – and possibly back into the 19th century.

        Don’t pay attention to all the noise/news. focus on what happens, not what is said.

        I think your fears of a democratic sweep are baseless.
        Trump is winning in a landslide.
        Whether Republicans hold the senate or flipp the house is not related.

        And this is happening BECAUSE of all the things that have you bothered.

        Because the left continues to pummel Trump over nonsense.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 7, 2019 8:45 pm

        “This guy can not go a day without being the expert in everything from astrology to zoology and commenting on his expertise daily.”

        Trump did not claim expertise in weather – he reported what he was told.

        I do not beleive he should have done anything – it is not the governments business.

        But you do – you think government should deal with national disasters.
        Further if Trump did not speak about Dorian – the stories would be Trump does not care.

        Trump not only knew who Ortez was, and honored him, but he changed his actions as president as a result of Ortez’s killing.

        I am not trying to claim Trump does everything well. Only that the press deliberately chooses to report that he does everything badly – even if they have to lie or completely ignore things to do so.

        I would further argue that While Trump is not “an expert on everything”,
        that his past track record demonstrates that he is very good at processing information and drawing good conclusions.

        Mattis just published a book critical of Trump.

        Yet Trump’s “I know more than the generals” has proven correct.
        Trump did NOT mean he knew more about guns and weapons.
        He meant he knew more about what he and the american people want, and knew that it was possible to get that. I do not think he had a “plan” beyond – get out of the mideast without doing so with our tail between our legs. That and – do not beleive what “the generals” tell you when politics is involved. It has taken more time that it should have. He has defered to “the generals” too frequently. But more progress has been made than in the prior 16 years.

        What Trump “knows” is how to get things done.

      • September 7, 2019 10:55 pm

        Dave “But you do – you think government should deal with national disasters.
        Further if Trump did not speak about Dorian – the stories would be Trump does not care.”

        Are you so tunnel visioned you can not understand what the hell others are trying to say? Are you unable to separate your views from those of others and not attack them for those views?

        When did I say government should deal with national disasters? Right now we have both government and private agencies that predict weather. Those agencies share some info on issues like hurricanes. Government does not create 20+ models that create a spaghetti forecast of where hurricanes are going. So if someone does it, fine, someone does it. The weather services is just one agencies among many.

        Now go back and read my comments about Dorian. You will find out I never said he should not have commented.

        But to refresh your memory, please read this when you are awake and have not been drinking so you understand my point now and my original comment.

        Trump should have commented. He should have said this has the potential to be big, it is powerful, it is heading toward Florida and to make sure you stay informed. He should have referenced the actions taken by officials to make sure people stayed safe and that there were people ready to react once the storm came through and help where help was needed. STOP. No reference to when , where, how strong, or speed of movement. Let the agencies do that. Had that happened he would not be fighting this idiotic pissing storm he is now embroiled in.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 9, 2019 4:57 am

        I am not trying to “attack” you Ron.

        I completely get that you are frustrated.

        I even get much of what you are bothered by.

        But I am not expecting perfction for the president.
        (Or you)

        We are having a discussion. My views are not the same as yours.

        Obviously I am more inclined to mine than yours.

        Much of what we are discussing is “crystal ball” stuff.

        I could easily be wrong. I should not have to say that.

        My point about Dorian, or Ortez, is that you are expecting perfection in an instance we can not even define or agree on what that is.

        I do not expect perfection generally – not from Trump, not from Obama.

        I DO expect perfection – before you infringe on my rights.

        Most of the comments of Trump that drive people apoplectic and nearly inconsequential.

        Yes, he was not wrong about where dorian COULD go, but it went were it was likely to go as opposed to where it MIGHT go.

        I think Trump should have stayed out – because the whole federal government should have stayed out.

        But given that my pocket is getting picked regardless, Nothing Trump said or could have said about Dorian mattered at all. Right or wrong – Dorian was going to do what Dorian was going to do. The back and forth of the press cycle be damned. Nor was dorian going to listen to the president. Amy president.

        Thus far Trump has NOT pulled something like “fast and furious”.
        IRSGate, Benghazi. The Clinton email scandal, changing immigration law by presidential fiat, failing to enfore the laws we have., having the FBI/CIA investigate congressmen, the press, and opposing political candidates.
        We KNOW Obama did those – and not just this Trump/Russia thing that is falling apart, but Obama actually pulled warrants to surveil journalists, and had CIA spying on Feinstein and the Senate intelligence committed staff, and we now learn that the political investigations of the 2016 election started in 2015 and involved all the leading republicans and some of the democrats.

        Tell me Trump has done those – and I will be OUTRAGED.

        But expect me to flip out over some flip charts about Dorian ?

        Does the president have the actual power to do something about the path of a huricanne ?
        If not – why are we even reporting this ?

        I am guessing if Dorian causes Damage in NJ or NY – Trump is going to be called a racist.
        Or maybe he already is – there must be some what to spin the flip charts as “racist”

      • September 9, 2019 11:40 am

        Dave, “My point about Dorian, or Ortez, is that you are expecting perfection in an instance we can not even define or agree on what that is.”

        I dont expect perfection. But I do expect intelligence. I do not and never will expect stupidity. Yes I am bothered by stupidity in a person elected as our president.

        Its how you get involved that shows leadership v stupidity.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 10, 2019 6:09 pm

        I am entirely with Jordan Peterson on this.

        Trump is not stupid.

        Trump has had some good luck (and some bad), but no one accomplishes all the things he has done purely through luck.

        People who have succeeded in multiple domains are highly intelligent.
        That is pretty much the signature mark of intelligence.

        I think that Trump deliberately embraces chaos as a tool to getting what he wants – and I very much do not like that. Even calling him “reckless” is inaccurate. Actual recklessness would have resulted in catastrophic failure long before this.

        Even where I disagree with Trump – he is actually very effective at getting what he wants.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 9, 2019 5:02 am

        “Let the agencies do that”.

        To a large extent I would agree. Though I would get the government out of most of this.

        But I will note two things:

        Whatever the issue – if Trump speaks, the press will micro parse what he says and attack.
        If he does not – he will get criticized for not caring AND most of our govenrment agencies are not especially trustworthy – and certainly Trump does not Trust them.
        The FBI and the Intelligence community have been working against him since he was elected.

        Left on the own NOAA would make reports about Dorian into a platform on Climate change – even though 2019 is starting as a record LOW year for huricanes.

        Regardless, I have no problem with attacking Trump,
        but if you want me to care the attack needs to be


      • dhlii permalink
        September 7, 2019 8:27 pm

        You can not trust what the media reports regarding Trump.

        If Trump does not continually bring that to our attention, we will be lulled into beleiving the media.

        Regardless, name almost anything that has been reported about Trump that is not either false or deliberately spun in a misleading fashion.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 7, 2019 8:04 pm

        Donald J. Trump‏
        Verified account

        Unbeknownst to almost everyone, the major Taliban leaders and, separately, the President of Afghanistan, were going to secretly meet with me at Camp David on Sunday. They were coming to the United States tonight. Unfortunately, in order to build false leverage, they admitted to.
        ….an attack in Kabul that killed one of our great great soldiers, and 11 other people. I immediately cancelled the meeting and called off peace negotiations. What kind of people would kill so many in order to seemingly strengthen their bargaining position? They didn’t, they….
        …only made it worse! If they cannot agree to a ceasefire during these very important peace talks, and would even kill 12 innocent people, then they probably don’t have the power to negotiate a meaningful agreement anyway. How many more decades are they willing to fight?

      • September 7, 2019 10:27 pm

        Nice that he said something more than 24 hours after it happened, between all the fake news crap and other retweets he did yesterday and today. And from my perspective, it does not give the soldier the recognition they deserve when you bury a comment about a soldier in a tweet declaring a peace meeting was cancelled.

        But thats me and my perspective. If the concern is the soldier, its a official comment from the white house announcing the death (now that there are few and days between) and giving the soldier the respect he deserved from the Bush/Obama/Trump war. Not some crap on twitter that many people don’t read, either becasue twitter is a crappy site or people dont follow Doofus Donald.

        Yes, I am totally burned out and turned off by his crap.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 9, 2019 4:13 am

        YOU are making my point about the Dorian coverage you think Trump should have stayed out of – BTW I agree, I do not think natural disasters are the business of the federal govenrment. But the press and most people DO.

        Now you are ranting because Trump did not say enough about Ortez fast enough.

        I do not know the details regarding Ortez.
        My understanding is he was killed by an IED.

        If so he is a hero for volunteering to go to afghanistan.
        As are lots of live people.
        But we usually do not piss on the dead.

        Bush used to call the families of every soldier killed – the same day.
        It was terribly hard on him, and he did not go public with it.

        That is the appropriate handling.

        Trump and Obama have done differently – and not so well.

        Trump found himself being recorded on a call to a soldiers family by a democratic represenative from the district for the purpose of embarrasing Trump.

        Separately more so that Bush or Obama, Trump is actively trying to get us Out of Afghanistan and the mideast.

        Except that he has done more than all his predecessors – I would be critical of his handling of Afghanistan.

        JUST LEAVE. The country belongs to the Afghani’s
        They get to have the government they want.
        We do not need “agreement”.
        If they sponsor terrorism in the future – we can blow the govenrment away again.
        It took less than a month last time.

        Our millitary id very very very good at destroying enemies.
        It sucks at nation building – and that is not our or their job,.

        So yes, I think Trump is the best friend our soldiers have – he is getting them out of wars we do not belong in.

        One of Trump big loud conflicts with “the generals” – Mattis and company, was over Afganistan more than a year ago.

        He wanted a plan to get out – they gave him CRAP,.

        He ranted and raved, but eventually he went with “the generals” – not Bannon or the american people. Bannon was out. But over time – so were all the generals.

        And now we are leaving – something we should have done years ago.
        Something Trump should have done 2 years ago.

        Even many of the things I am pissed at Trump over – he is still head and shoulders above any democrat – and frankly a crap load of republicans.

        No I am not pissed over Ortez.
        But I am pissed at the press,

      • dhlii permalink
        September 7, 2019 8:13 pm

        What I presume when the media reports on Trump is that they are lying.
        I presume that based on their history over the past 3 years.

        I presume that whatever they say the truth is something different.

        It does not matter what the issue is.

        I presume that they will ignore if possible any instance in which Trump does well or even just what is expected.

        You said Trump ignored Ortez’s death. I do not think that cancelling secret peace negotiations and calling him a great great soldier is “ignoring him because he is puerto rican”

        I would strongly suspect that Trump has done even more regarding Ortez,
        But unless his wife or media calls the media claiming Trump said something stupid or evil to her, you will not hear any story about Trump doing anything good, or merely what he is supposed to.

        That is fine – I do not have a problem with that.

        But you are jumping the shark when you presume that the picture deliberately painted by the media is true.

        You can not draw conclusions regarding Trump – or many many other things based solely and what is and is not reported in the media and how.

        You should know by now that it is false, and you will have to find out truth a different way.

        Alex Jones is more credible than NYT and Wapo – and that is pretty bad.

        Regardless, you can not draw conclusions from what the press reports.
        You can not draw conclusions from what the press does not report.

      • September 7, 2019 10:36 pm

        This whole thread started with a comment concerning Trump sticking his nose into the hurricane issue and then I shared an article that reported he goes ballistic when people disagree with him.

        My point in all of this is leadership. Leaders don’t get into the cow paddies in the field. They lead. He is not doing this from my perspective. He steps out in the field and when something goes bad, he steps in the bull crap and keeps going further into the field until the shits all the way up to his waste.

        The only way he has to remove himself from the dung he finds himself in is to belittle others to make them look smaller because he can not defend what he has done.

        So lets close this discussion because my views on Trump today is the same they were when he ran in 2016 and I refused to vote for either of them. And I suspect thats what I will do in 2020, but since the Libertarian party may not have a viable choice, the top of my ballot will be blank.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 9, 2019 4:22 am

        My point is that no matter what Trump did – he was going to get criticised,

        And now we find the criticism was wrong.

        I am having a problem with your persepective – I can not see how it makes sense.

        You do not want Trump to comment about Dorian – yet when he did not comment about Ortez fast enough – that was a problem too.

        Whether Trump should have spoken on Dorian – is small potatoes – but we haf a whole news cycle about “stupid trump, or demented Trump” – only in the end – it was his detractors that were wrong.

        So if you falsely accuse someone of incompetence – what is the price ?

        From what I can tell, it is not possible for Trump to make you happy.
        You are going to hold him accountable
        When he speaks
        When he does not
        and even if he is right.

        When you make false accusations of others – in my book YOU become the news – not your target.

        To me the news is not “Is Trump competent”, but “why do we trust our press about anything”
        and Who in the press should we trust ?

        While I agree with your view of presidential leadership

        That is NOT the expectation of the press or the majority of people.

        We expect the president – any president to speak on all issues – large and small.

        If we expect that – we can not criticize ANY president for doing so.
        And certainly not for being RIGHT.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 7, 2019 7:54 pm

        This Hurricane crap does not matter.

        Of course when a hurricane is camped over the Bahama’s the probable path of future Travel includes Alabama and much of the US.

        Of Course NOAA had to fess up – there is this thing called “the way back machine”.

        And of Course the media is reporting it as Trump getting them to fall on their swords.

        The whole thing is stupid, it is like The Russian nonsense.

        What reason does Trump have for on his own projecting Dorian to Alabama ?
        Why would he choose to say something that was wrong and that he was going to get caught at ?

        The cognativ disonance you have to tolerate to be a lefty is amazing.

        Trump has to be so brilliant as to have successfully conspired with Putin to steal the 2016 election – right under the noses of the Obama FBI/CIA/NSA who we now know where watching since 2015. But Still bumbles like Carter Page and George Papadopoulis managed spycraft that those in the US intelligence services have never managed, and left no finger prints, and under intense scrutiny never cracked.

        And at the same time Trump must be so stupid as to project Dorian onto Alabama knowing that it was almost certainly not going to do that, and all this to no personal benefit.

        How does Trump benefit from getting Dorian wrong ?

      • September 7, 2019 10:07 pm

        Dave “The whole thing is stupid, it is like The Russian nonsense.”

        You got that right. Why is Trump making such a big deal? Why did he stick his fat nose into it in the first place?

      • dhlii permalink
        September 9, 2019 3:55 am

        “Why is Trump making such a big deal? Why did he stick his fat nose into it in the first place?”

        Because when Trump does not stick his nose into things we get a whole news cycle about Trump is unprepared and does not care.

      • Priscilla permalink
        September 8, 2019 8:33 am

        I think that, since Hurricane Katrina was successfully spun as a gigantic failure of the Bush administration to protect the black citizens of New Orleans, hurricanes have been big political stories. Obama made a big show of coming here to NJ after Hurricane Sandy, walking around the beaches and hugging the people whose homes had been destroyed. Many commentators claimed that it stopped the momentum that Mitt Romney had going into the last 2 weeks before the election, and made Obama look both caring and presidential.

        If Trump had gone to Poland as planned, after being briefed by advisors that Dorian had the potential to hammer Florida, how do you suppose that would have gone for him politically? You don’t think that the media Outrage Machine would have gone into overdrive, claiming that Trump didn’t care about the people of Florida (or Georgia or Alabama, or the Carolinas)?

        Of course that would have been the narrative. Sending Pence to Poland, staying at Camp David , and remaining engaged in the storm effort was the most prudent and logical choice, both from a leadership prospective and a political one.

        It’s fair to say that he may not have needed to be involved as a hands-on manager, but he sure as hell needed to be involved for his political survival.
        Democrats were rooting for the storm to devastate the southeast, so that it would reflect badly on Trump, as if any president could stop a hurricane.

        The other thing is…in the ultra-dumb Sharpiegate dispute, Trump turned out to be right, and the media turned out to be the liars. So I’m not gonna fault him for being hands-on.

      • September 8, 2019 11:34 am

        So again I will just write two short comments.
        1. I must be one of the few that thinks Trump involvement in details opens himself for criticism if the details dont pan out.
        2. I understand I dont communicate well since I try to point out the issue from the 5000 ft level and the responses come from the 6ft level.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 9, 2019 6:33 am

        “So again I will just write two short comments.
        1. I must be one of the few that thinks Trump involvement in details opens himself for criticism if the details dont pan out.”
        It does, and not getting involved opens him up for criticism for not getting involved.

        “2. I understand I dont communicate well since I try to point out the issue from the 5000 ft level and the responses come from the 6ft leve;”

        I do not think that is our difference.

        If I have understood your posts – you think that Democrats swooping in in 2020 would be a disaster for the country, and you think Trump is making that more likely.

        You see every exchange between Trump and the press as a potential gaffe and an potential oportunity to sour voters.

        Is that approximately your position ?

        My reaction is:

        Nothing is more damaging to the left than success.
        If what you fear happens – we will get a Trump II in 4 more years and having a D behind your name will be a blue badge of shame.

        Nothing could destroy the democratic party faster than actually honoring their promises.

        Obama came in like a tidal wave sweeping republicans away following a disaster.
        And he failed very nearly as quickly. Not so bad as to lose in 2012, but so bad that he lost the house and the senate AND so bad that no democrat was winning in 2016.

        I think most of them are smart enough to know that.

        You seem to like more of what Trump actually does than I do. And what it to continue – but “quietly”.

        Quietly is not going to happen.
        Things were not quiet with Obama – but they are an order of magnitude less quiet with Trump.

        This is not going to change until the left and the media actually learns this crap does not work.

        It is ALWAYS possible to spin what happened in a damaging way.
        Sarah Sanders was Trashed from day one.
        She was trashed as a liar for BEING RIGHT.
        Do you see an apology in the NYT ?

        The only way Sanders was not going to be attacked and trashed was to be exactly the opposite of who they said they were. And I am not sure that would be enough.

        Trump and Co would be savaged from the left and the media do matter what they did or did not do.

        Trump interrupted the left narrative that the future was theirs.

        Trump is going to be hated by the left and trashed by the media – no matter what.

        Part of that I have no problem with.

        I WANT a hostile press.

        The problem is I also want an HONEST press, and we do not have that.

        I know you hate it when I discuss ideas – but the dishonesty of the left today is inextricably linked to the philosophy of the modern left.

        When all viewpoints become valid – truth loses value.

        Modern Journalists do not care about the truth.

        It is not the hostility of the press that is the fundimental problem
        it is that they are disconnected from the truth.

        And that is important – take the Sanders example – she was Smeared for statements that were and are absolutely correct.

        That has now been established by the IG.
        But the harm to her is done.
        She is more hated than ever,
        She is hated for everything she said.
        She is hated for what she said.
        And those who hate her DO NOT CARE whether it was true or not.

        When truth goes out the window – you can be hated for things you DID NOT SAY or DO.

        One of the things I loath about most of these “Trump is a racist” stories,
        is we get 20 paragraphs of Trump’s remarks are racist.
        But we do not get two sentences of what Trump actually said.

        That is not accidental.

        Ron, this does not end well – that is a legitimate fear.

        But it is my view that the collapse will be on the left.

        You can not lie this long, this big and this often without destroying your credibility.

      • September 9, 2019 11:55 am

        Dave , “Is that approximately your position ?”

        Yes and jo.

        Yes, Trump is leading us to a Democrat sweep. ( My view only)

        No, not everything he says ( treets) is used agaisnt him. ,i.e., China economic policy leading to a downturn in economic growth in China OK. Press can attack policy only. But then he tweets some crap about Mark Sanford disappearing to Argentina with his girl friend after announcing a run against Trump. So now the lame stream media focuses on the stupidy of the Sznford tweet and not China.

        When my son would get in trouble at school because he kept reacting in an unacceptible manner to circumstances that had no importance, I tolf him to keep his damn mouth shut! That is also my thoughts about Trump.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 10, 2019 6:16 pm

        I do not think Trump wants the attention focused on his policies toward china.

        The less the media is paying attention to the Trump part of the china issue – the less Trump can accomplish.

        Even the current hong kong protests are a distraction for him.

        One the one hand they put the screws to Xi, but on the other there is little Trump can do about Hong Kong and all of that comes at the expense of the negotiations he is actually interested in.

        I have not followed Trump’s Sanford tweets – but your claims about what Trump said – accurately reflect what happened.

        Sanford was a rising republican – one with lots of positions I liked who dropped everything – an election, his family everthing to chase the “love of his life” in brazil, only aparently he was alone in that love.

      • September 10, 2019 6:56 pm

        Dave, i put political issues in different categories
        Critical…Demands immediate and.uninterrupted attention
        Very important.. Requires many hours of attention, but some can be handled while other task attended to.
        Important… Needs attention, but career staffers can handle providing recommendations.
        WTF difference does it make… Sanford and where the hell Dorian was projected to go days before it bogged down in Bahamas fall into that category.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 11, 2019 2:03 am

        “what difference does it make ?”

        If the issue is so unimportant that Trump should not tweet about it.
        then the media should not cover his tweets either.

        I share your questions as to why Trump says some of what he says.

        But most of it is not important. And people say unimportant things all the time.

        Ultimately Sanford will/was judged by voters.
        I had a great deal fo respect for Sanford at one point. He was a political rising star.
        One with very libertarian political values.

        But he F’d up, big time. He made some very stupid personal choices that harmed those arround him.

        I am happy mostly to forgive and forget.
        But I can not see myself ever voting for someone who could act as he did.

        We worry that Trump is highly erratic. I do not think that is actually the case.
        But the chaos he actively sows makes that seem true.

        But Sanford ACTED eratically. We do not want a president, governor or anyone else in power who would act as impetuosly as he did, without warning.

        Forgive and forget does not mean vote for.

      • September 11, 2019 4:41 pm

        Dave “If the issue is so unimportant that Trump should not tweet about it.
        then the media should not cover his tweets either? ”

        Their is two distinctly different agendas in this comment.
        1. Trump is the Antonio Brown/ Odell Beckham,jr. of politics. ” Look at me, I’m the greatest! No one knows about everything like me. I say something and its true! ” So he gets involved with the most.insignificant issues that make no f#-%-in difference and the press jumps all over it.

        2. The primary focus of the press is to defeat Trump. It is not to report significant information. It is not to report the truth. It is to find anything to make Trump look bad, to rub a rash and spread salt in the wound and generate a reactionary response. Then once that response is received, continue commenting, getting further under his skin.

        So Trump inserts himself into details he should.leave to detail people because he knows everything, the details dont pan out, the press, hell bent to defeat Trump knows if they make him look wrong, he will react, they can comment more, he will get aggrevated, comment more, and they make him look small in many peoples mind because he is fighting over insignificant issues.

        But to the press, it is not insignificant. They accomplished their objective. To make Trump look like a member of the Kardasians instead of presidential.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 14, 2019 7:50 am

        1). True to some extent – so what ? True of most if not all politicians.

        Separately I beleive most of Trump’s tweets are DELIBERATELY provocative – or the left.
        I beleive he is actively seeking to drive the left and the left media appoplectic.
        That he is trying to make them into “the boy who cried wolf” – and he is suceeding.
        And AGAIN – that is THEIR failure.

        If everything trump tweets is important then NOTHING trump tweets is important.

        2). Too a large extent true. But they have substnatially burned their credibility doing so, and will not easily get it back.

        RCP just noted that the primary source for all “fact checks” is media reporting.

        Why is it so hard for those in the media to get “we say so” is not proof of truth.
        Something is not a “fact” because it is reported on.

        I do not think Trump gets into what you call details for the reasons you assert.

        I think he does so because he is the one person he can trust to do things as he wants them.

        One of the significant differences between Trump and prior presidents is the small number of people with real power in his administration.

        Those in govenrment and big business measure their power and worth by the number of direct reports they have.

        But SMB’s and successful businesses like Trump’s succeed by being LEAN. By confinining decision making to small very capable cores,

        Delegation is tricky – there is not a “perfect balance”.

        BTW we saw this in the whole Trump/Russia thing.

        There is little difference in Trump’s contacts with Russia and Clinton’s.

        The differences is that Trump was not seven layers removed from everything.

        Papadoulis and Carter Page were inconsequential participants int he Trump campaign, they had no authority. BUT they were at most separated by three levels from Trump.

        The Clinton russia thing goes Clinton, HFA, Perkins Coi, Fusion GPS, Steele, Russian informants, The Russian govenrment
        A giant Matryoshka doll

        There is not a “right way” to deal with things.

      • September 14, 2019 11:48 am

        Dave, ” True to some extent – so what ? True of most if not all politicians.”

        OK, let me try some facts since you have not been considered words.

        ….2016 was the lowest turnout of voters since 1996, a second term vote for Clinton and an uninspiring GOP candidate.
        ….26.3% of eligible voters voted for Trump.
        ….120M people voted.
        ….3 states made the difference..
        ….Total vote difference in those states was 107,000 votes. This is .09% of the total vote.
        ….Clinton was disliked by many well before 2016, some going back to 1992.
        ….Clinton was a bad campaigner, invigorating many with her “basket of deplorables” comment

        Now you can defend your position that Trumps know-it-all , get-into-everyones-business, obnoxious bully attitude will not turn off any voter and everyone that voted for Trump will vote for him again. That the democrat turnout will be as low as it was in 2016.

        You can continue to believe the low turnout in 2016 will continue into 2020.

        You can continue to believe that Sanders/Warren/Biden would be as disliked going into the election as Clinton and be a horrendious in campaigning as Clinton.

        And I will continue to believe Trumps asshole demeanor will impact enough votes to swing the election in favor of the left. I think indications were seen in NC’s 9th congressional district where Trump won by over 10% and the margin in this election was 2%. This, the results from 2018 and the changing demographics with firms moving to NC bringing their tax and spend liberals with them are predictors that NC will swing blue since Trump only carried NC by 3.7% in 2016. Swing NC and WS, MI, and PA will not even be close.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 14, 2019 2:22 pm

        “….2016 was the lowest turnout of voters since 1996”

        2008, 2012 and 2016 were years of record breaking turnout.
        Even midterms have had record breaking turnout.

        High turnout almost always favors D’s It is unlikely that Obama would have won – either in 2008 or 2012 without very high turnout.

        Did Clinton “suck” as a candidate – certainly. For many reasons – including being too arrogant to grasp that she could lose the rust belt.

        Yes, the margin in those states was small. But that margin was NOT the story.
        Trump had to shift more than 2M votes in the rust belt just to get close.

        That shift may not be permanent, but it is stable for now, Democrats are NOT doing anything to speak to the voters that won the election for Trump.

        If anything they are pissing on them even more.

        What hurt Clinton most was not the specific words she said – such as deplorables.

        But that she really meant the things that harmed her. Democrats really meant the crap that was in the Wikipedia emails. Clinton really did think Trump voters were racist scum.

        Since 2016 Clinton may be gone – but MOST or the reasons she lost remain.

        Democrats have doubled down on the “racist scum”message.

        There are some disadvantages that were unique to Clinton.
        As well as some advantages unique to Clinton.

        Almost every democratic candidate with benefit from being NOT Clinton.
        Every democratic candidate at the same time will start weaker than Clinton.

        The likelyhood of Democratic turnout reaching 2016 levels is actually very LOW

        In fact Trump would have won with his 2016 numbers against Obama’s 2012 numbers.

        With few exceptions republican voters tend to be more reliable than democrats.
        If they were not democrats really would have their permanent majorities.

        Regardless, like 2012, 2016 and 2018 2020 is going to be very much about exactly who votes.

        We get all kinds of polling and all kinds of stories all over.

        It is not hard to find a “republicans are in a panic over 2020” story.
        Though I am not personally seeing evidence of that.

        Though there are a FEW specific races that look troubling for Republicans.

        There are also plenty of Trump is expanding on the 2016 map stories, or Trump is making huge inroads with minorities stories.

        Alot was made of the whiteness of 2016 Trump voters – but Trump did pretty well for a republican among hispanics.

        All indications are that he is going to do several points – up to 10 points better with minorities in 2020. 10pts is optomistic and not happening.

        But even a 3pt change among blacks who have voted overwhelmingly democratic for decades is a serious threat to democrats.

        Democrats are seeing defections among asians, bispanics, jews and blacks.

        Again even small defections are a huge problem.

        Democrats can not – either on a state by state basis or on a race by race basis,
        afford ANY erosian in their base.

        You say Trump is in trouble in states he won.

        A few days before the election the polls had Trump down in PA by 6pts – is he down 6pts in PA now ?

        Right this moment everywhere and in pretty much every catagory Trump’s poll numbers are the same or better than the last polls before the 2016 election.

        We know how that ended.

        It is entirely possible I am smoking whackey weed and the drum beat of doom for republicans is loud and true.

        But the odds do not favor it.

        As I have noted repeatedly – the 2018 election was really weird.
        Historically it should have been a bad year for the incumbent.

        Trump’s house losses were very close to historical norms.
        But the GOP performance in the senate was MUCH better than historical norms.

        In fact accross the entire election if 50% of the razor thin elections had broken for the GOP which is statistically what should have happened, It would have been a great year for Republicans.

        Absent a recession 2020 is going to be better for the GOP than 2018.

        It is a presidential election year with a strong economy.

        Further democrats are falling all over themselves to follow a strategy that is resulted in landslides against them EVERY TIME.
        Mondale, Dukakis, McGovern.

        None of us know what is going to happen in 2020. Not you, not I.

        Certainly not the pundits.

        Reading polls is a massive excercise in self delusion and cognative bias.

        You, I, D’s R’s can almost always find a poll to support whatever they want to beleive.
        Further as myriads of recent elections should tell us – the polls are off.
        They are misreading some things in an unpredictable way.

        2016 was way off, Brexit was nearly 10pts off.

        These are good people who know what they are doing.

        Except clearly they don’t.

        That is not meant as an insult.

        From the time Trump won the GOP nomination through to election day, my intellect told me he was toast. But something intuitive told me that we were misreading the tea leaves.
        I was not alone in that.

        Today my intellect and my instincts are more aligned.

        I do not think 2016 was an aberation.

        Clinton was not actually a “bad” candidate – she had lots of positives and lots of negatives – just like Trump, or Romney/Obama or McCain/Obama or … before.

        Yes, if just one little thoing more had goner her way she could have won.

        And if one little thing more had gone Trump’s way it would have been a route.

        You can not assume that in the next election – one party/candidate is going to repeat every mistake they made the prior election, while the other is going to fix every mistake.
        Or that every lucky break is going to fall one way.

        When Trump won Florida early on – I knew the election was over – even though I did not think he was going to win in the fashion he did. I expected he would win Nevada and New Hampshire

        Since you like that Clinton won Nevada and NH by less than 30K total votes,
        Trump can lose PA WI, MI and still win with NV and NH.

        Republicans are “technically” defending more states. But have more reliable routes to victory, and the overwhelming majority of those states are solid.

        Trump is planning on putting 6-10 MORE states in play in 2020 than in 2016.
        He has the money to do so. If Trump tries to pick off a blue state – that is in his reach – D’s MUST spend alot to defend, and that makes their efforts to flip pink states harder.

        Further there is not a democrat except Biden who stands a chance of actually flipping the states gave Trump victory.

        Every democratic candidate is speaking to NYC and SF voters. Not to the flyover voters that cost them the election.

        D’s MIGHT have “energized” their base – but that is voters in NYC and CA – and what does it matter if they drive up numbers in those states ?

        You say Trump is in trouble in the states he flipped.

        I think not. I think his own votes are dependable – in those states.
        And democrats and moderates in those states are NOT going to be rushing out to vote for Warren or Sanders or …

        Moderate dems appear highly likey to sit out the election.
        Lost of moderates are likely to sit out the election.

        That will produce a better result for Trump than 2016.

        Regardless, 2020 is NOT going to be a high turnout election.
        It will likely be higher than the 80’s 90’s and through 2008.
        But not matching 2008, 2012, or 2016.

        And that favors republlicans

      • dhlii permalink
        September 14, 2019 2:29 pm

        I am not trying to “defend Trump”

        I am trying to make an accurate assessment of him clouded the least by both personal biases and the media.

        I think that when people have a track record of success – you should let go of the beleif they are morons who got lucky lightning does not strike the same place over and over.

        Here is turnout for presidential elections since 1972

        2016 was NOT a low turnout election. Only 2 elections in the past 50 years had higher turnout. The odds STRONGLY favor that 2020 will have lower turnout than 2012.
        If so Trump highly likely wins.

        Is that a “beleif” – certainly – any conclusion about 2020 turnout today is a “beleif”.
        But it has stronger probability that the opposite.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 14, 2019 2:36 pm

        NC9 Bishop won a district that has been gerrymandered left since 2016 by 4000 votes in not just an off year, but a special election, for a seat that in 2018 R’s won by a couple of hundred votes in an election that was thrown out.

        That is an improving trend not a declining one.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 9, 2019 6:12 am

        What we can count on is that no matter what Trump does – the press will attack.

    • dhlii permalink
      September 7, 2019 9:10 am

      You are correct – no one is listening.

      Not to Trump, not to the medAia.

      Most americans have not followed this to sufficient extent to grasp that nearly every media outlet called Sarah Huckaby Sanders a shill and a liar – for stating as a mere possibility with the IG report has just stated as a fact regarding Comey.

      But they have noticed that they were promised EVIDENCE of Trump Russia Collusion,
      and we are no longer even looking for evidence – because we know that it did not happen.

      Trump has jumped up and down frothing and shouting “fake news, witch hunt”, and after 2 1/2 years – most of us grasp that was correct.

      The claim now is not that there was misconduct, but that wasting 2 1/2 years investigating an allegation that made ZERO sense in the first place was still a good thing – because we had to know, and because well “argh Trump”!

      You are right Ron – the only ones paying much attention to the left wing media are the left fringe of the country and increasingly even they are disheartened.

      Every day the press goes more and more banal to “prove” that Trump is
      evil, incompetent, diabolitcal, racist, …
      Failing to note such things as devious and bumbling do not go together.

      The latest is “SharpieGate” – no one cares.
      No one cares who drew the lines on the whitehouse Dorian track.
      No one cares that some Lt. Col. has confessed that he briefed Trump on all possible storm tracks – including the unlikely one through Alabama.
      No one cares about Trump’s oval office storm report,
      and no one cares about the media frothing about it.

      Some of us consciously understand that we judge a tree by its fruits. Most of us do so subconsciously.

      Trump’s 2019/2020 campaign is going to be a mirror of Reagan’s “Its morning in america” campaign. And absent some massive disaster THAT is what people are likely to care about.

      Most of us are learning to pay no attention to what Trump says and less to what the media says and to wait patiently to see what happens.

      And at the same time – without much help from Trump -democrats are falling all overthemselves trying to self destruct.

      Rep. Ilbran appears to have a mess that involves fraudualent immigration and messy relationships that makes Stormy Daniels took tame.

      And one of the squad managed to ask people on twitter to support a group that is the major funder of Al Queda in Somalia.

      Democrats Climate Summit was a total disaster – apparently they think nothing of asking for $93T of our spare change.

      Each democratic candidate is fighting with the next over which of them is farthest to the left.

      Trump is not going to have to call whoever he opposes a “socialist” they will have embraced the label themselves.

    • dhlii permalink
      September 7, 2019 2:42 pm

      For the past 2 1/2 years we have been told constantly by the media that highly placed whitehouse or govenrment sources on condition of anonimity tell us that

      Some form of Trump’s world is going to end tomorow,
      He will be impeached, he will be indicted, the smoking gun will be found, ….

      NONE of that has proven true.

      So why are you buying more “anonymous sources”.

      As best as I can tell “anonymous sources” are sock puppets that reporters get to tell them what they want.

      What part of the media has ZERO credibility are you having problems with ?

      Trump is younger than half the supreme court,
      He is younger than a significant portion of the senate.

      He might be having mental dificulties – some older people do.
      Some people develop alzheimers as early as their 50’s.

      But having had a father with vascular dimensia – this is not easy to hide over the long run.

      As to some of the specifics?

      NOAA produced tracks that ran through Alabama.
      If you have been on twitter – you can find them.

      Yes, by the time the storm got to NC that was unlikely.
      But that is not the case when Trump spoke.

      Trump takes pleasure in needling, railing, etc. the tribulations of his opponents.

      He beleives – and I think that he is right that politically he benefits from spitball battles with people Like Comey and other celebrities who go after him.

      You look for signs of incompetence in CHANGES in behavior, not people doing the same things they always have.

      • September 7, 2019 6:13 pm

        Dave “NOAA produced tracks that ran through Alabama.
        If you have been on twitter – you can find them.”

        Like I said, your in the details and I am viewing from a much broader perspective. You design and build the bridges, while I view how the bridges can be used to transport goods and services and where the community will be in 10 years after the bridge is finished.

        Trump is buried in details and gets caught in the details when they dont pan put. Then he goes ballistic when someone said he was wrong. And he cant stand being wrong.

      • dhlii permalink
        September 7, 2019 9:00 pm

        All of the “details” are only important – because the press made them important – by LYING.

        No one would be looking at week old NOAA huricane tracks if the press had not insisted that Trump was bat shit crazy.

        The entire Trump/Dorian thing – not what the press reported, but what actually happened was solely about presenting Trump as caring about the huricane and being on top of things.

        Precisely what Trump said was only important because the press made it important.

        The story Trump wanted was “I am paying attention to Dorian, and that means the federal government is paying attention to Dorian”
        The press as always tried to turn that into “Trump is an idiot.”

        No one – not Trump, nor the press cared precisely where Dorian was headed.

        There is not a reason for Trump to misstate where Dorian was headed.

        When the press reports that someone is significantly misrepresenting the facts, and there is no reason for them to be doing so, their report has very long odds of being correct.

        When people consistently bet against the odds – they are the ones we should be suspicious of.

        Trump is absolutely a gambler – and that is one of the things that scares me about him.
        He has gambled big in the past and lost. But he has also won far more times than he has lost. I do not beleive you should manage a country based on gambles with high odds of success – the price for failure is too high and shared by all of us.
        You only get to gamble with what is yours.

        Beyond that – Trump is a gamble – and a very very good one. What that means is that he is exceptionally good at evaluating risks. That he does not bet against 10:1 odds – unless he knows something the rest of us don’t.

        It means he would not “collude” with Russia – when there is no upside and huge downside. ‘
        It means he would not state Dorian was headed to Alabama, when 10:1 it was not.

    • dhlii permalink
      September 7, 2019 2:52 pm

      In addition to the possibility that Journalists just lie and do not actually have the “anonymous sources”, there is also the possibility that there is a source and that the source has an agenda other than the truth.

      We know that Comey and McCabe were “leaking”. We know their leaks were self serving, and agenda rather than fact driven. We know that Comey briefed president elect Trump solely for the purpose of creating a news story.

      We know that Comey leaked memo’s whose most damning attribute was NOT what happened, but Comey’s speculation regarding Trump.
      And we know that Comey leaked for the purpose of getting a special prosecutor.

      We also had a recent incident where a ranking Whitehouse staffer was fired because she spoke “off the record” about the Trump family to an ethically challenged WaPo reporter who then ignored WaPo ethical guidelines that say reporters should not even bother to listen to “off the record” material.

      Regardless there are myriads of reasons that people might actually provide false information to reporters, that is one of the reasons that the media used to require multiple sources before they would report almost anything – es