Friday, November 15, 2019

President Trump was hired by the American people to rid the Beltway of these impeachment 'witnesses'

Good bye, and good riddance to George Kent, Bill Taylor and Marie Yovanovitch. Thank you for your service to the country and your employment here has ended. You are no longer needed, so please collect your things and turn in your badges at the front desk.

They deserve to be fired because they attempted to circumvent or curtail Trump Administration policy with regards to Ukraine.

Article II of the United States Constitution grants the President sole and exclusive power to appoint 'ambassadors,' which in 1787 meant 'anyone who speaks to foreign governments on behalf of the United States of America.'

The U.S. Supreme Court decided in 1936 that the executive branch has "plenary and exclusive power of the President as the sole organ of the federal government in the field of international relations" U.S. v. Curtiss-wright Corp, 299 U.S. 304, 320 (1936).
Though it is not explicitly mentioned anywhere in the Constitution that the President has plenary power over foreign affairs, the Supreme Court ruled that the need for tact and secrecy necessitated the President to be able to make decisions without being constrained by the other governmental branches. The Supreme Court ruled that the only limit to the President's plenary power over foreign affairs was that they "must be exercised in subordination to the applicable provisions of the Constitution". U.s. v. Curtiss-wright Corp, 299 U.S. 304, 320 (1936). In other words, the Supreme Court ruled that the President had unlimited power over foreign relations as long as he did not do anything which explicitly violated the Constitution. It is important to note that the Supreme Court was very willing to give the President vast amounts of power at the time of Wright, which was just before the outbreak of World War II. This does not seem like much, but over the years a clear pattern has been established wherein the President's powers over foreign relations are greatly expanded during troubling times.

After the Iranian hostage crisis in 1981, the President made an executive order to seize all Iranian assets in the United States without the approval of Congress. Normally, Congress would have to approve of such an action, but in Dames Moore v. Regan the Supreme Court ruled that "though those settlements have sometimes been made by treaty, there has also been a longstanding practice of settling such claims by executive agreement without the advice and consent of the Senate." Dames Moore v. Regan, 453 U.S. 654, 679 (1981). The Supreme Court allowed the President to make an executive order based on an assumption that Congress would have approved based on similar legislation that it had previously passed. This shows another broadening of the President's power over foreign affairs, as the Supreme Court allowed the President to make an executive order that was not permitted by the Constitution. The Supreme Court's reasoning for allowing the President's power to be broadened was that the Iranian hostage crisis was an emergency situation and that in order to be able to handle the situation quickly and efficiently, the President's power over foreign affairs needed to be expanded. This is yet another example of the President's foreign affairs powers being increased during turbulent times.

Historians may debate when the rise of the 'foreign service' began, but no one can dispute that it has become too big for its britches. If the 'foreign service' does not execute the President's explicit orders and carry out his foreign policy to his sole satisfaction, then they can be circumvented, fired or otherwise told to STFU and come home.

The foreign service does not formulate foreign policy. The President does. The foreign service may interpret his policy, but if it misinterprets that policy the President has sole and plenary authority to replace or remove the misguided people who don't get it.

What the American people watched on November 13 and 15 was the testimony of three members of the foreign service who don't get it. They also lack the humility required to understand that they serve at the pleasure of the President, even if they find it distasteful that their world view and President Trump's world view are worlds apart. That's too bad. Be the professionals you claim to be and do your job as your President has determined it to be.

There is similar bureaucratic entrenchment with regards to heatlthcare, transportation, environmental regulation, food safety, agriculture even tax policy. All of those are being dealt with too, but Trump has only been President for 33 months and dismantling the federal behemoth is taking a bit longer than expected, ok?

In 2016, Donald Trump made a campaign promise to drain the swamp of Washington DC. How this country dealt with both allies and adversaries was part of the quagmire and the system was broken in the eyes of the electorate. So they elected Donald Trump to do what he said he'd do.

That includes ridding the federal government of people like George Kent, Bill Taylor and Marie Yovanovitch.

Good bye, and good riddance. Who's next?

Thursday, November 14, 2019

The world's second oldest profession is making a comeback in the Gulf of Mexico

About 3,500 years ago, a bunch of sea-faring ne'er-do-wells decided they'd give up fishing, hoist the black flag and start raiding the commerce of the ancient Greeks and Phoenicians. After centuries of determined attempts to put an end to the swashbuckling violence of piracy at sea, the marine thievery has never been completely eliminated.

I've always wanted to use this quote in a blog post:
"Every normal man must be tempted, at times, to spit upon his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin slitting throats." -- H.L. Mencken 

Troubling news reports like this one are becoming more common (again) right in America's backyard:
Pirates attacked an Italy-flagged offshore supply vessel in the southern Gulf of Mexico, injuring two crew members, the Mexican Navy said on Tuesday, in the latest outbreak of robbery and piracy to hit oil platforms and infrastructure in the area. ...

Mexican state oil firm Pemex has said robbery is increasingly affecting its oil infrastructure. Sophisticated equipment has been stolen and resold, and crews robbed.

Most registered attacks have been in the southern rim of the Gulf of Mexico, where dozens of oil platforms produce thousands of barrels of crude per day.
Piracy and theft have been a way of life in the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea almost since Europeans began colonizing the tropical land masses in the early 16 century. Suppression of piracy has been one of the principal duties of the navies of every empire or nation with commerce in the region. Right up until the early 19th century, pirates were to be summarily hanged without trial and their tarred bodies preserved and displayed at the entrances of harbors throughout the Gulf, Caribbean and well up the Atlantic coast.

High seas piracy in the modern era has been correlated with proximity to failed states. Witness the scourge of piracy in the waters off Somalia, the Gulf of Guinea and Strait of Malacca. Each of these world regions has been beset with political and economic turmoil, resulting in widespread poverty and inevitable crime. Is our southern neighbor Mexico teetering on a brink of state stability? Hmm...
“Although oil and diesel stealing has been going on for decades, there has been an increase in criminal activity reported in the last four years,” Johan Obdola, founder of the Global Organization for Security and Intelligence, told Fox News. “It is estimated that the stealing in Mexico is up to 1.18 million barrels a day, bringing millions to criminal organizations, and making it very difficult to control.”

And, controlling the matter is convoluted by the notion that little is known about the exact network of pirates who are believed to have been born out of local fisherman circles. Even corrupt government workers themselves have aided some of the piracy, experts have asserted.

Since he took office in December 2018, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador vowed to make oil theft a top national-security priority. This past January, officials shut down several Mexican Petroleum (Pemex) pipelines in an attempt to curb the smuggling and piracy, but the shortage triggered a schism among the oil-hungry cartels and a national deficit that angered people across that country.
The criminal cartels in Mexico and Central America have diversified since the 1980's. Drug smuggling is lucrative, but so is human trafficking and now, apparently, so is piracy. Warlords in Africa and cartel bosses in the Americas exist because the governments in these areas have failed to protect an economic system that produces widespread growth in the wealth of the average citizen.

Does Venezuela come to mind?
In happier times, ferries used to bring groups of Venezuelan tourists to party in Trinidad. Today, though, as Venezuela slides further into all-out economic collapse, its impoverished coastal ports have become modern Hispaniolas - havens for buccaneers.

Most of the pirates are ex-fishermen, who used to make a good living catching tuna, octopus and shrimp in the Caribbean's warm waters. But under Venezuela's former president, Hugo Chavez, the fishing industry underwent a well-intentioned but disastrous nationalisation programme, prompting companies to relocate abroad.

With the added blow of hyperinflation, many of the fishermen now have no job and no way to feed their families. They do however have access to boats and to guns, which are in ready supply on Venezuela's increasingly lawless streets.

It's sadly reminiscent of the piracy crisis in Somalia a decade ago, where jobless fishermen took up arms to prey on passing ships. But while the Somali pirates targeted wealthy cargo ships, the Venezuelans tend to go for fellow fishermen from Trinidad, who aren't much richer than they are.
If there's an authoritarian government ruling a nation with a large coastline these days, there's probably a rampant crime problem and crime doesn't stop at the shoreline.

Piracy hasn't been a serious problem in the Northern Gulf or along the eastern coast of the U.S. since about the late 18th century. Gee... what happened in the area about that time?

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

The media is pushing a false narrative that Republicans are pushing a false narrative

No wonder the American public is confused, disengaged, or both. It's even hard for people following this impeachment circus to figure out which ring the show is in.

In the hearing held today, Republican Ranking Member of the House Intelligence Committee Devin Nunes went into considerable and well informed detail on how Russia wasn't the only former Soviet state to meddle in the 2016 election and how Democrats cooperated with corrupt Ukrainian officials.

The biased media jumped on this, calling it unsubstantiated and a false narrative. It is neither.

Here's what the Associated Press presented today in a meek attempt at a 'fact check:'

Trump himself was told by his officials that the theory was “completely debunked” long before the president pressed Ukraine to investigate it anyway, according to Tom Bossert, Trump’s first homeland security adviser. In testimony at the closed-door hearings that preceded Wednesday’s public session, Fiona Hill, a former special assistant to Trump on the National Security Council, said it was bogus.

“It is a fiction that the Ukrainian government was launching an effort to upend our election,” Hill testified. “I’m extremely concerned that this is a rabbit hole that we’re all going to go down in between now and the 2020 election, and it will be to all of our detriment.”

Broadly, the theory contends that a hack of the Democratic National Committee in 2016 was a setup designed to cast blame on Russia but actually was cooked up by or with the help of Ukrainians. The evidence points conclusively to Russia, not Ukraine.
If that's what Fiona Hill really told Congress last month, she should join all of the folks Robert Mueller successfully prosecuted for lying to Congress. The Ukrainian government in power as of 2016 absolutely sought to prevent Trump's election and I'm not alone in knowing this.

It is no 'theory' that Ukrainians were elbow-deep in election interference and it wasn't the DNC server hack AP (and the New York Times) seems to think it is. It was a direct attempt to get dirt on the Trump campaign and keep Democrats happy with Ukraine.

In a subscribers only post on his site, Rolling Stone's Matt Taibbi (no friend of Donald Trump) wrote:

Still, it’s an undeniable fact that Ukraine worked to help Democrats oppose Trump in 2016. A Ukrainian court has ruled that its government “meddled” illegally in the American election, among other things by providing information about payments made to former Trump campaign manager Manafort.

This was after a veteran Democratic operative named Andrea Chalupa traveled to Ukraine in search of Trump oppo, which, not that anyone cares, is a similar story to Ukrainegate, the difference being that Chalupa was not president of the United States when she asked a foreign government for dirt about a presidential candidate. Even making the simple factual observation that the Chalupa/Ukraine transaction took place, however, has become an impossibility in the current media landscape.

The Chalupa story was originally broken by Politico reporter Ken Vogel in 2017 (“Ukrainian efforts to sabotage Trump backfire”). But Politico now describes Trump being committed to “unsubstantiated allegations… a conspiracy theory that Ukraine aided Democrats in the 2016 election.”

Politico originally reported that conspiracy theory!
Ken Vogel's story from 2017:
Ukrainian government officials tried to help Hillary Clinton and undermine Trump by publicly questioning his fitness for office. They also disseminated documents implicating a top Trump aide in corruption and suggested they were investigating the matter, only to back away after the election. And they helped Clinton’s allies research damaging information on Trump and his advisers, a Politico investigation found.

A Ukrainian-American operative who was consulting for the Democratic National Committee met with top officials in the Ukrainian Embassy in Washington in an effort to expose ties between Trump, top campaign aide Paul Manafort and Russia, according to people with direct knowledge of the situation.

The Ukrainian efforts had an impact in the race, helping to force Manafort’s resignation and advancing the narrative that Trump’s campaign was deeply connected to Ukraine’s foe to the east, Russia. But they were far less concerted or centrally directed than Russia’s alleged hacking and dissemination of Democratic emails.

Taibbi's story, "The New York Times sinks below Fox," is a serious and saddening takedown of what used to be one of the great institutions of American journalism. His site is well worth a subscription, despite the fact that Taibbi is an avowed liberal who detests Donald Trump but has the professional courage to call shitty journalism what it is.

The Financial Times' story is also behind a paywall, but it's entitled "Ukraine’s leaders campaign against ‘pro-Putin’ Trump" and goes into detail how the 2016 Ukraine government worked against Trump, providing the information to DNC contractor, Alexandra Chalupa, that eventually got Paul Manafort caught in an FBI trap. and Politico's Ken Vogel puts the AP 'fact check' in a very bad light. Are they being dishonest, or just being shitty journalists?

The Hill's Investigative Reporter John Solomon also documented the pre-Zelensky Ukrainians attempts to influence the 2016 election. Solomon presents evidence that shows:
Sworn statements from two Ukrainian officials admitting that their agency tried to influence the 2016 U.S. presidential election in favor of Hillary Clinton. The effort included leaking an alleged ledger showing payments to then-Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort;

Contacts between Democratic figures in Washington and Ukrainian officials that involved passing along dirt on Donald Trump;

Financial records showing a Ukrainian natural gas company routed more than $3 million to American accounts tied to Hunter Biden, younger son of then-Vice President Joe Biden, who managed U.S.-Ukraine relations for the Obama administration. Biden’s son served on the board of a Ukrainian natural gas company, Burisma Holdings;

Records that Vice President Biden pressured Ukrainian officials in March 2016 to fire the prosecutor who oversaw an investigation of Burisma Holdings and who planned to interview Hunter Biden about the financial transfers;

Correspondence showing members of the State Department and U.S. Embassy in Kiev interfered or applied pressure in criminal cases on Ukrainian soil;

Disbursements of as much as $7 billion in Ukrainian funds that prosecutors believe may have been misappropriated or taken out of the country, including to the United States.
The information shown in italics is hotly disputed by Democrats and Democrat-friendly media, but their disputes are made without evidence (they just don't 'believe' them). Solomon has said on the air that he has the records and that the Dept of Justice has them as well.

Solomon also has sworn statements that Ukrainian officials tried to come clean, offering reams of evidence to U.S. State Dept officials, only  to be turned down. WT everlovin' F was that?

It is very easy to lump what Republicans are doing in the impeachment hearings with what's being uncovered by John Durham in an ongoing DOJ investigation. They may be covering the same thing, but to claim that Durham's probe and Republican lines of attack in the hearings are a defense against impeachment is backwards.

The Democrats have been in a panic since May, when Durham started digging. Their impeachment circus is a preemptive strike against the potential criminal indictments Durham is probably going to produce.  They're trying to poison the well and prejudice the jury pool. The jury pool is of course the American public. Last month, AP was deliberately dishonest in its characterization of the July 25 phone call between President Trump and new Ukrainian President Volodomyr Zelensky. Again, poisoning the well.

The media--from the Associated Press through the NY Times--are just carrying the Democrats' water.

On the first day of public impeachmnt testimony... This exchange should be 'Game Over' for Democrats

It should be 'Game Over,' but it won't be. Democrats are all-in, now.

Expect this clip to become front and center during the 2020 Presidential Campaign.

Monday, November 11, 2019

Nobel Laureate Milton Friedman on the Phil Donahue show in 1979

This is a clip from one of Dr. Milton Friedman's appearances on Phil Donahue's show. Friedman was a Nobel Laureate in Economics and the founder of modern Monetarism.

This video is cross-posted on IBCR's Facebook Page.

Not one single Democrat in Congress or running for President in 2020 can accept what's being taught in this 3:00 segment.

Not many Republicans can either, but which side do you think is more likely to follow an economic philosophy of unleashed personal economic liberty?

Here's the full episode of Donahue.

An American 'wealth tax' would produce a global economic catastrophe

Wealth.  An abundance of valuable material possessions or resources. Property or other material possessions with a monetary value, such as livestock, capital stock, jewelry and precious metals. Money, or things that can be exchanged for money.

In any exchange economy, wealth is a measure of our ability to produce. You cannot give unless you first have. You cannot earn unless you produce. If you produce less, you earn less. If you have more, you can pay more to those who earn by producing more.

The more of anything you have, the less each discrete unit of it is worth. The scarcer something is, the more it's worth. If a scarce something is highly desirable, competition by those desiring it will drive the price up.

There is an immutable truth in basic economics: If you tax something, you will have less of it. We also want to be paid the most the market will bear for whatever we sell while paying the least the market will bear for whatever goods or services we buy. We are an altruistic society but we each act in our own self interest.

The wealthiest Americans are not just sitting on big fat bank balances. No one who hoards wealth holds it for long. Microsoft founder Bill Gates, worth an estimated $108 billion is not just hoarding cash and cash equivalent assets. Most of his wealth consists of stock in his company, Microsoft. He also holds debt in the form of bonds and Treasury securities, real estate, shares in the ownership of capital assets and other valuable items that are not money. Their value is estimated based on what they could be sold for if he liquidated them today.

There are about 750 other American billionaires, and many other billionaires from other countries who hold American assets or who are deeply involved in the U.S. economy. All of those are just like Gates.

Microsoft is a publicly traded company. Anyone can own a part of Microsoft by buying shares of the company's common stock. If you have a 401(k) or some other retirement account that is managed for you by a bank (or some other financial institution), you probably already own some Microsoft stock.

Microsoft stock sells for about $146 (11/12/19) per share. Multiply the total number of shares available by the share price and you get an estimate of what Microsoft the company is worth today. The share price is roughly equal to the expected future net after tax earnings of the company plus any value of capital stock on hand divided by the number of shares. Its price is also subject to the daily fluctuations in the stock market. These fluctuations reflect a dynamic view of investors about the health of the company and its ability to earn money in the future.

A lot of things can affect a company's outlook, including the policies of the governments of the countries it sells its products in and the policies of the country it calls home.

If the U.S. imposed a 6% wealth tax (as proposed by Elizabeth Warren), it will do so to pay for a plethora of new services, including government-funded healthcare, college tuition and student loan debt, universal child care and other "free" stuff.

Those subjected to the tax must raise the funds to pay it because not even Bill Gates keeps $6-$7 billion in checking. Since they would have to convert some of their non-monetary holdings into cash, they'd have to sell them. Selling them would quickly create a large increase in the supply of those and similar assets. When everyone is selling and there are only so many buyers, the prices of the things being sold will begin to fall.

If the average net worth of American billionaires is $50 billion and there are 750 of them, their collective tax burden would increase by 750 x 0.06 x $50 billion = $2.25 trillion, or about the total net worth of about three dozen billionaires.

Some billionaires like Donald Trump are wealthy because of the value of their real estate holdings. Real estate is the most difficult to convert to cash, so selling when they're not ready means selling for less than they could fetch when buyer and seller are both ready to deal. Others, like Jim Walton and the Wal-Mart folks hold real estate and large amounts of capital equipment that are also difficult to sell in less than a year. Bill Gates and almost all other billionaires are also heavily invested in overseas markets or multi-national interests where Americans partner with Mexican, Canadian, Japanese and European concerns. A great deal of planning will go into deciding what to sell, when to sell it and how much to sell it for. This would change how they value their holdings, too. What's worth $100 million today may only fetch $80 million next year.

Billionaires would not be the only people affected by a wealth tax. multi-millionaires and regular millionaires would also be affected. While there are only 50,000 to 100,000 "wealthy" households, even the upper-middle, middle and lower-income classes would be affected because the price of everything will fall.

Bill Gates may be worth $108 billion today, but by the time he and other wealthy Americans sold possessions to pay their taxes, Microsoft stock would not be trading at $146 a share.

How low could Microsoft go? Well, the company is traded on the New York Stock Exchange. A sudden influx of shares for sale in one company would affect the value of the exchange indices that include it. The Dow Jones Industrial Index is one. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index is another. As those indices trade down, the shares of other companies not in the indices would fall too. Why? With a good company like Microsoft selling lower, shares of good companies like Apple, Google and Intel would be sold so that your 401(k) manager can maintain his index-required Microsoft-Apple-Google-Intel ratio. They also trade lower because savvy investors don't buy market-value shares when there are perceived below-market shares available.

Banks, insurance companies, pension funds, large investors and speculators all become affected, making buying and selling decisions that wouldn't have been made before the tax was imposed. Companies are inherently less profitable in higher tax environments, so companies might close offices and factories and lay off workers. With fewer offices, factories and workers there is less income because there's less production. Everything slows down.

Remember, stock prices are a reflection of expected future after tax earnings. Those earnings will be expected to fall, further pressing share values down. We are in a global economy. Many overseas interests are invested in the U.S.economy and any slowdown here always spreads. As the old saying goes, "when the U.S. economy sneezes, the world catches a cold." So a sell-off on Wall Street will trigger sell-offs in London, Paris, Moscow, Sydney, Seoul, Hong Kong and Tokyo.

Keep in mind also that at least $2.25 trillion in assets are being sold into this marketplace. Hundreds of billions and likely trillions more will also be on offer at falling prices. Despite the meticulous planning, such a large influx of assets for sale will create considerable uncertainty. Financial markets flee uncertainty and fly to safety. The safest ports in uncertain times are gold and the debt denominated in the currency of stable sovereign nations. Interest rates will fall, but with the productivity of capital uncertain, economic activity will slow. 

As this cycle repeats itself, Microsoft might be trading so low that Bill Gates is only worth $54 billion. Instead of paying $6-$7 billion in wealth taxes, he's only due to pay maybe $3 billion. Some wealthy households are sure to see their net worth fall to a level where they're no longer subjected to the wealth tax. In fact, the very wealthy will find ways to reduce the value of assets without affecting their true worth.

After what will surely be a short time, government will not have the source of revenue they'd planned on when they promised that plethora of services, especially universal healthcare. Their costs will never go down--they always go up. Then what? Increase taxes? Start the cycle again?

An American wealth tax would result in an unmitigated global catastrophe. Nations that were stable before the tax would likely destabilize. Most at risk would be those who only recently transitioned from developing economies into developed economies. Eastern European and Balkan nations could be cast into deep recessions. South American democracies could devolve into authoritarian states. Resource wars would become more likely.

It may not look exactly this way, but something like this is inevitable.

As former U.K. Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher famously said, "The trouble with Socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money." It is absolutely true. In every country that has tried it, only misery and human suffering have followed. You cannot tax a people or a nation into prosperity. It has been tried and it has never failed to fail.

Sunday, November 10, 2019

The Crimson Tide and some Tide fans both have some gettin' better to do

What a great day for college football. The two best football teams in the nation's best college football conference went toe-to-toe yesterday when Alabama hosted LSU in an epic slugfest. The President of the United States was in attendance. The 41 points Alabama scored against LSU was the most they'd scored in regulation since Florida and Georgia both hung 50+ points on them in 2008. Unfortunately for our side yesterday, LSU hung 46 on Bama, the most in series history.

Suffice it to say that both Alabama and some it its fans have a lot of gettin' better to do.

LSU and Bama are both the kind of team that can and do make you pay for you mistakes. Alabama made more mistakes and LSU made'em pay. Two critical first half turnovers led directly to two Tiger TD's. Both turnovers were quarterback Tua Tagovailoa mistakes. It would be too easy to second-guess Nick Saban's decision to start Tua; to claim that had he not started the two miscues wouldn't have happened.

Alabama has started four freshmen all season on defense and at many times yesterday there were five freshmen on the field. Freshmen make mistakes. They will get better at not being out of position. They will get better at recognizing what the offense is showing and getting into the right coverage, and they will get better at tackling. Experience is solid gold and we're a little short of specie this year.

The officials also made mistakes. Both teams were guilty of defensive holding and defensive pass interference and weren't flagged. Then there was the highly questionable sideline throw that should have been overturned (I call BS on the "forced out" excuse). LSU's offensive line held on every other pass play and never got called. Alabama was offsides at least a half-dozen times. But when thinking about officiating, it's best to remember that if your team just does what it's supposed to do, bad calls or no calls can't change the outcome.

LSU's offense is nothing short of jaw-dropping. They don't make many mistakes. A very good offensive line. A very good receiver corps. And a great quarterback with uncommon grit and toughness. LSU has a chance to win it all.

Coach Ed Orgeron of LSU is the real deal. He talks funny but he's building a formidable program through great recruiting, great coaching and a mutual love with the state of Louisiana.

Alabama fans welcomed President Donald Trump with warm hospitality. It's rare for the Commander in Chief to visit your house in a game with such magnitude, Greatness attracts greatness. Usually. It sometimes attracts the pettiest among us.

So it comes with great embarrassment to learn that some idiot decided to go full Antifa and vandalize the Baby Trump balloon that anti-Trump protesters had brought to pre-game activities. Protesting is the most American thing ever. There's a reason why freedom of expression is guaranteed in the very First Amendment to the Constitution.

Like it or not, ridicule is a protected form of free expression. The balloon, the people behind it and the message it sends are an affront to common decency. That's not surprising--the left's inability to accept the legitimacy of the Trump Administration is itself nothing more than a spoiled brat throwing a hissy fit over the 2016 election. The Baby Trump balloon couldn't be a better representation of today's left if you prayed for it. The whole left is a great big baby, throwing  a great big tantrum.

The man who slashed the balloon  is Hoyt Hutchinson. He is no better than that piece of shit Harvey Updyke, who poisoned Auburn University's famed 100+ year old oaks at Toomer's Corner. It is appalling and deeply embarrassing that Hutchinson, like Updyke, is being celebrated by some Bama fans as some kind of hero today. Consider that Antifa is a lawless and violent organization that routinely destroys historic landmarks and violently confronts peaceful marches and demonstrations they disagree with. To the left, Antifa is a bunch of heroes. To decent society, they are thugs. To some Bama conservatives, Hutchinson is the new Updyke. To me, he's not much better than Antifa.

Updyke. Hutchinson. The unnamed Tuscaloosa protest "organizers." Antifa. All cut from the same rotten cloth. Most Bama fans are better than this. Some, like the Tide they profess to love, have some gettin' better to do.

Saturday, November 9, 2019

Fox10tv's exclusive interview with Jeff Sessions on 2020 run

Bob Grip is a Titan in Gulf Coast journalism, so it's not surprising that the semi-retired legendary anchor scored an exclusive interview with former Senator and U.S. Attorney General.

Sessions talks about his decision to run for his old Senate seat, and also opens up a bit about his relationship with President Trump.

Fox 10 News promises more from this interview in the days ahead. This can't be better for Sessions, and can't be worse for either Sessions' primary opponents or more importantly Doug Jones. Grip can't be bought and can't be spun.

Democrats desperately need to hold this seat to have any hope of flipping the Senate and Sessions will obliterate Jones. Democrats know this, so they will go all out to kill his candidacy in the primary. They would rather take their chances with anyone else.

Believe absolutely nothing you hear from national media outlets in the next four months when it comes to this story. There are no "sources close to the matter" who would even take a call from CNN, NY Times, Washington Post, ad nauseum. If those folks tell you a story, believe the precise opposite to be the truth.

If the media says President Trump is torn over how to respond to this race, believe instead that he is indifferent. If they say Sessions is seeking Trump's endorsement, believe instead that they have not spoken about it.

Friday, November 8, 2019

The most anticipated preview of the most anticipated game of the season has been my "home" on the football side of the internet since May 2001. For every game Alabama plays during the football season, Jess Nicholas gives TF denizens a preview of the matchup, going position-by-position of both teams. He talks strengths, weaknesses and schemes and makes a pick.

With LSU undefeated again and coming  back to Tuscaloosa to face an undefeated Alabama (again), this week's preview is the most anticipated yet.

An appetizer:
Alabama will have to win this game amid a circus that will be taking place outside the stadium: the arrival of ESPN’s College Gameday set, the attendance of President Donald Trump. But the biggest circus act this week has been the high-wire balancing act of media pundits, who have had to balance their newfound love for LSU against criticism of Alabama despite the Crimson Tide being no worse than the Tigers’ equal.
He's right. As an example of the media's Wallenda Act, look no farther than SI's Pat Forde. Click that link only if you really like 500+ words of equivocating bullshit.

It's gonna be a great game. If you want to see how a really talented phrase-turner expects the game to end, click the first link.

Jeff Sessions has qualified for the U.S. Senate GOP primary

He's in. And he's hit the track running hard for his old spot as the Junior Senator from Alabama. He made his public announcement in very friendly territory, chatting it up with Fox's Tucker Carlson.

He's also gotten some very big guns from the upper chamber behind him, led by the Senior Senator from Alabama, Richard Shelby:
Fox News has learned that Alabama’s senior senator, Richard Shelby, is circulating an “open letter to conservatives” signed by at least 11 Republican senators who are endorsing Sessions’ candidacy. Sessions served in the Senate from 1997 to 2017 until he joined the Trump administration as attorney general.

“Each of us has served in the United States Senate with Jeff Sessions,” the letter, obtained by Fox News, states. “We have seen him work diligently in the public eye and behind closed doors, when things were both good and bad, under stress and in success.”

The letter is signed by Shelby, Oklahoma Sen. Jim Inhofe, Kansas Sen. Pat Roberts, Wyoming Sen. Mike Enzi, Idaho Sen. Mike Crapo, Georgia Sen. Johnny Isakson, Wyoming Sen. John Barrasso, Missouri Sen. Roy Blunt, Arkansas Sen. John Boozman, Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson and Nebraska Sen. Deb Fischer.
Polling with an official Sessions campaign hasn't been done yet. But if the official polling tracks anywhere near the polling on a hypothetical race with Sessions in the mix, he's the new leader in the clubhouse:
In late June, Brent Buchanan’s firm Cygnal surveyed 612 likely Republican voters with a margin of error at +/-3.96%. His ballot test numbers – WITHOUT Sessions in the race – showed:

Tommy Tuberville 29%
Bradley Byrne 21%
Roy Moore 13%
John Merrill 12%
The ballot test – WITH Sessions in the race – showed:

Jeff Sessions 29%
Tommy Tuberville 21%
Bradley Byrne 13%
Roy Moore 9%
John Merrill 8%
Sessions is expected to draw votes from "establishment" lane dwellers, Byrne and Merrill, but also from the "outsider lane" candidates Tubs and creepy Roy Moore. If these numbers hold and Byrne or Merrill can't find a way to get past Tubs, Sessions will face Tubs in the ultimate establishment vs outsider battle.

One way Sessions can get Tubs to suffer a little is by showing up tomorrow with President Trump at the Alabama-LSU game. Tubs can't do that; Sessions can because he's a Capstone Alumnus.

The question is, would Trump do this? Washington Examiner indicates that he wouldn't. Remember folks, Trump is a showman. What better show could there be than having the President and Prodigal Senator reunited before 100,000+ potential Alabama voters and millions more on national TV?

How could Trump not have his heart of hearts warmed by this ad, and how does he resist?