It’s no secret that the Left’s by-any-means-necessary (a.k.a unhinged-take-no-prisoners-search-and-destroy) opposition to now-Justice Kavanaugh’s confirmation is their pathological fear that he will provide the 5th vote on the SCOTUS to overturn the abominable (and abominably-reasoned) Roe v. Wade decision. It may very well be that this subject falls within the 7% of cases on which Justice Kavanaugh and Judge Garland disagreed on the DC Circuit Court, and it may also be true that Justice Kavanaugh views abortion as “settled precedent,” but the Left simply cannot take that chance. This is the reason that Justice Kavanaugh’s confirmation was subject to so many sabotage attempts.

With the votes on cloture and confirmation coming up earlier in the week, Planned Parenthood tweeted this:

Roses are red
Violets are blue
Senators vote NO on Kavanaugh
Or else we’re coming for you

Let’s leave aside for now the possibility that another James Hodgkinson will see this an an invitation to physically assault (or worse) senators. This is clearly a threat that PP will use their considerable financial clout to campaign against senators who would not vote against Justice Kavanaugh. So where do they get their money? Obviously, a considerable amount comes from performing abortions (and apparently illegally selling the remains thereof), a revenue stream that would be in jeopardy if Roe v. Wade were overturned. But the other major revenue stream for Planned Parenthood comes from the federal government, which means, from us, the taxpayers.

Every so often, there is an attempt at legislation to prevent federal tax dollars from being used to fund abortions, which would effectively defund PP. Their counterargument to that is that they don’t use the federal money for abortions, they just use it to fund all the other supposedly-great work they do. Anyone with even a basic understanding of accounting or just common sense knows that this is pure sophistry since any money they receive that can be spent on other things frees up money from other revenue streams to be used for abortions.

But obviously, one of those other tasks to which the federal money is being spent is campaign contributions to democrats. So, similar to public-sector unions, PP is taking money from the federal government and using it to enrich the campaign coffers of democrats. So, if RvW is overturned and PP gets defunded, democrats lose a large portion of their campaign funds. All that blather about “preserving a woman’s right to choose” is simply a cover for democrats protecting a campaign revenue source that we are providing and that republicans are thus far too docile to remove.

Let’s hope that this most recent disgusting display by the Left, including congressional democrats and Lisa Murkowski, could be just the thing that republicans need to finally get some backbone along with an increased majority to finally stop this financial merry-go-round. How about simple legislation that prohibits corporations and unions that receive federal money from donating to political campaigns?


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And be careful of what you do ’cause the lie becomes the truth.

– Michael Jackson, “Billie Jean”

If Judge Kavanaugh’s last name were a single syllable, I have no doubt that the sleazy tactics being deployed against him would become their own term, a la “Borking” from Ted Kennedy and others slandering judge Robert Bork when he was nominated in 1987 by Ronald Reagan (“Kavanaughing” just doesn’t have the same ring to it). But I can’t help wondering if the crime the judge is alleged – without any corroborating evidence – to have committed 36 years ago fits too easily into today’s #MeToo narrative.

The left is desperate to have Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination fail, so when they were unable to derail him during the regular Judiciary Committee hearings, they had to go nuclear. So, given the #MeToo climate, they naturally found a way to accuse him of sexual assault. The fact that he has already passed 6 FBI background checks proves that he in no way has done anything even remotely fitting the #MeToo mold as an adult, so their only choice was to go as far back as possible to accuse him of an undisprovable crime at an unspecified time and place when he was 17. And they already have the built-in “believe all women” trope provided by #MeToo.

Am I the only one who thinks that, if this were all happening in 2014 during the peak of the Black Lives Matter movement, that Dr. Ford would have accused Judge Kavanaugh of having uttered “the ‘N’ word” at a party 36 years ago? That would have been the accusation guaranteed to generate the most outrageous outrage on the left at the time, and would have been just as undisprovable as the sexual assault accusation is now.

When even the left-leaning American Bar Association gives Judge Kavanaugh it’s highest rating of “well qualified,” citing his character and integrity, the opposition has to go low. The definition of “low” always depends on the current SJW fad-of-the-moment, so no one should have been surprised that this scurrilous charge surfaced at the last minute. Let’s see to what new low the left will sink when it’s time for President Trump to replace Ruth Bader Ginsburg (approved 97-3). It will depend on whatever has replaced #MeToo by then.


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Don’t handicap your children by making their lives easy.  -Robert A. Heinlein

I have always believed that children will live up to our expectations. If we expect them to work hard and succeed, then they will – or at least they will try to. If we don’t expect them to try, then they won’t. I have applied this standard to my own children, of course, but also to every child whom I have coached in youth baseball and in what used to be called Boy Scouting. I’d like to think that it’s working, and actually have objective data to that effect both in the success of my own children and also from feedback I have received from many parents of the children whom I have mentored over the years.

I make my living in a technical field by being the guy who does presentations (among other things), so I know the value of being able to speak in front of an audience. I was struck recently by an article in The Atlantic about a growing movement among some high schoolers as discriminatory and demanding alternative assignments. I’m sure that many will think me insensitive, but my reaction is that these kids should just “suck it up” and do the assignment and they will eventually come to appreciate the value in having done so.

The article focuses initially on children who legitimately have anxiety disorders, and I think that Mary Chastain over at LegalInsurrection does a wonderful job of representing that side of the argument, but even as an anxiety sufferer herself, she concludes that anxiety shouldn’t be an excuse for kids not having to do presentations. Instead, she suggests that the teacher should work with the student and “start off small.” She points out in Shapiro-esque fashion that “the real world doesn’t care about your feelings.”

It is of course important to understand children’s feelings, but only in the context of being able to help the child overcome those feelings to do what is in his or her best interest, which a child is, by definition, not capable of knowing. That’s what parents and teachers are for. A teacher like Kathleen Carver, quoted in the article, who thinks that she needs to cater to her students’ feelings or they won’t like her, is actually handicapping her students as Heinlein says in the quote above.

I once had a player on one of my youth baseball teams. We were in the playoffs and, due to eligibility rules, he was our last remaining pitcher. He had a bad inning where he walked a few batters and gave up a few runs and he came off the mound at the end of the inning in tears. Our team scored, so we were definitely not out of the game, but when it was our turn to take the field again, this boy refused. I listened to him express his feelings about why he didn’t want to pitch and then proceeded to tell him that he didn’t really have a choice. He was our only pitcher and the rest of the team was depending on him to go back out there. He reluctantly agreed, still in tears, and proceeded to walk the first batter he faced. I thought he might break down at that point, but he struck out the next batter and the inning ended with him getting a double play by catching a line drive back to him and doubling the runner off first base. I will never forget the smile on his face as he came off the field and high-fived me.

Does Ms. Carver really think that I should have “responded” to his feelings by letting him sit out?

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I am an avid golfer and very much a fan of the PGA Tour. Like everyone else, I was impressed by Tiger Woods and rooted for him in his early years on the tour. I did think it was a bit unfair when he had the gallery move a boulder for him at the 1999 Phoenix Open, but I did enjoy many of his early exploits. However, I stopped rooting for him many years ago, and not because of his off-course exploits. No, I stopped rooting for him even before that because of the foul language and emotional outbursts he too often exhibited on the course.

I do think it’s great that he’s finally healthy and able to play in tournaments again, but I find it rather ridiculous when he is covered as the main story in a tournament that he has no chance of winning. And while it’s true that he has played well in the British Open and PGA Championship recently, I don’t follow the hype that this means he’s going to win 5 more major championships to break Jack Nicklaus’ record. In fact, I believe these two tournaments show why he not only won’t win 5 more, but won’t win even one more.

Where Tiger used to be the mentally strongest player on the tour, he is now damaged goods. He is making critical mistakes in key situations and the more it happens, the more frustrated he will become and the more he will press and make more mistakes. That does not mean that the media will not cover him like he’s always about to win the next tournament, even when he barely makes the cut.

It feels to me very much like how the political media are covering the democrats. They are obviously shaken from losing the last election, and they are making critical mistakes in policy, from embracing Socialism to abolishing ICE. The media will continue to put a positive spin on everything the democrats do, like claiming moral victories for democrats who lose special elections or playing up candidates who are trailing in the polls.

But the rest of us will see the violence and intolerance of the democrat base, like Antifa and Black Lives Matter, and just like Tiger Woods’ outbursts on the course, this will cause former fans to root for someone else. Tiger Woods will never win another Major, and there will be no “Blue Wave” in November.


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“Your life is happening now, right in front of you.”

– Madeline (“Christopher Robin”)

“That’s how she knows the difference between a boy and a man.”

– Chris Janson, “Take a Drunk Girl Home”

“You sang and I listened to every word, and then I listened to what they said after… that’s how I got saved.”

– Arthur (“I Can Only Imagine,” the movie)

I led our parish youth group on a Mission Trip a couple of weeks ago. As I mentioned last year <link>, this is a truly inspirational week of prayer, reflection and service, and it was an amazing blessing to once again be able to share it with my daughter. I made a conscious choice to avoid news and politics as much as possible during the week, and it really helped me focus on the purpose of the trip to not be constantly distracted by all the craziness that otherwise tends to preoccupy us. So, as a public service to DaTechGuy’s readers, today’s column will not be about politics. Instead, I’d like to share with you a few pieces of good news from today’s culture that have resonated with me since I’ve gotten back from my trip.

I’m a country music fan from way back in high school and a big reason I’ve loved the genre for so long is because of the stories the songs tell. I recently came across “Take a Drunk Girl Home” by Chris Janson. The song starts out telling of a girl who is partying way too much one evening, and you get the feeling that it might be about how easy it would be to sleep with her. Instead, the chorus of the song goes like this:

Take a drunk girl home
Let her sleep all alone
Leave her keys on the counter, your number by the phone
Pick up her life she threw on the floor
Leave the hall lights on walk out and lock the door
That’s how she knows the difference between a boy and man
Take a drunk girl home

Imagine if young men today were taught to take care of women instead of taking advantage of them?

Last week, my family and I went to see the new “Christopher Robin” movie. I literally cannot remember a time when I did not Winnie-the-Pooh. I even brought a stuffed Pooh with me to college. This movie was wonderful! Not only was it nostalgic to see Pooh and his friends from the 100-Acre Wood come to life, but the message of the movie was just great. Yes, it was a little cliched, with Christopher Robin having become too focused on his middle-management job to spend time with his family, but to see him come alive by playing with his childhood friends again, and realize what is truly important in life, was a very uplifting experience. I don’t want to spoil the movie if you haven’t seen it, so I won’t say anything else, other than that the voices of the characters were nearly perfect. Please go and see this movie.

The last experience I wanted to mention is the movie “I Can Only Imagine,” a movie about Bart Millard of the band Mercy Me, and the writer of the title song, which he wrote for his father. This movie does a wonderful job of showing the power of prayer to transform our lives. Not only our own prayers, but the prayers others may pray for us. It reminded me of a new friend I met on my Mission Trip, who helped me get a handle on some things that have been bothering me, and who promised to pray for me as we returned home to our “normal” lives. I think that these three experiences may well have been the result of those prayers.

If Andrew Breitbart was right that “Politics is downstream from culture,” then maybe all is not lost, after all.

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Every time there is a Supreme Court vacancy under a Republican president, the Left panics, at least since 1973, when Roe v. Wade was erroneously decided, inventing a supposed right to abortion that is nowhere in the Constitution. With the nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh, the pattern continues. We all know that this panic stems from the fact that the Left, when they control the courts, uses their power to push their progressive agenda on society when they can’t win at the ballot box, so they are afraid that our side will also use the courts to push our conservative agenda in just as underhanded a way as they do. There is one critical difference, however. Conservatives do not make things up. We adhere to the Constitution so any societal change that comes from a conservative SCOTUS is actually bringing society back in line with the Constitution, not some made up progressive vision of what society ought to be.

The disingenuous tactic most often used by the Left is the concept of stare decisis, which is Latin for “to stand by that which is decided.” Practically speaking, the Left considers it to mean “Thou shalt not overturn Roe v. Wade.” And in all the sound and fury about stare decisis, they often point out that this constitutional abomination is some kind of “super precedent” that absolutely must be upheld because it has been on the books for over 45 years. You can bet that their argument that Obergefell v. Hodges (the gay “marriage” decision) can’t be overturned will be because it was just decided and SCOTUS can’t overrule itself that quickly. Convenient that two completely opposing arguments can be made for the same rule, “SCOTUS shall not overturn any decision that we like.” It’s the same tactic they use about global warming climate change, but I digress.

It turns out that Obergefell itself overturned Baker v. Nelson, which was decided in 1972, a year before Roe, so it should have been at least as strong a precedent as Roe. And Brown v. Board of Education (1954) overturned Plessy v. Ferguson, which was decided 58 years previously (1896). Just for fun, let’s take a look at Trump v. Hawaii, the “travel ban” case that was just decided this term. Aside from making liberal heads explode by ruling in favor of President Trump, the decision also overturned Korematsu v. United States (1944), the Japanese internment decision from 74 years previously. Presumably the Left agrees with everyone else that Korematsu should have been overturned.

Actually, the controlling precedent on abortion is Planned Parenthood v. Casey, from 1992. As I’ve written before, this decision should be overturned if for no other reason than to strike the execrable “Sweet Mystery of Life” passage from the American legal lexicon (don’t let the door hit you on your way out, Justice Kennedy). But is 27 years enough time to make Casey a supposed “super precedent”?

Here’s what it comes down to: The Left can use “emanations” and “penumbras” to make up constitutional rights out of whole cloth and then hide behind stare decisis, effectively claiming a ratchet effect towards their progressive vision for our country. We on the right can use the actual text of the Constitution to bring things back to where they should be. With President Trump replacing Anthony Kennedy with Brett Kavanaugh, we have an opportunity to make that happen. I’m not wishing ill on any other member of the Court, but there is a chance we will be in even better position to do so in the coming years. Let’s hope that President Trump will continue to nominate strong conservatives and that the Justices have the courage to make it happen.

Pride goes before disaster,
and a haughty spirit before a fall.  -Proverbs 16:18

I spent last week in San Francisco for work. My duties required me to arrive on Sunday, which means I got there smack in the middle of the Pride Parade. The practical effect of the parade is that it snarled traffic enough that my Lyft driver had to drop me off a block and half from my hotel, and the parade lasted for six hours. I  had work to do once I arrived, so I didn’t actually attend the parade, but I definitely saw some of the crowd.

Mostly I found myself wondering what these people were thinking. I fail to see how wearing lingerie in public and dying your hair orange – as one woman (I assume) I saw in the hotel lobby – or wearing T shirts with offensive messages “celebrates” anything. It was a six-hour long exercise in seeing who could break the most social norms and get away with it. Apparently, you can get away with anything in San Francisco.

The tragedy of a once-great city like this spending so much money on a parade was brought home to me later in the week when I walked about a mile and a half from my hotel to go see a movie (“Infinity War” – I’ll just say I’m not a fan). You know all that stuff you’ve read about homeless people and feces on the street in San Francisco? It’s all true. And it’s heartbreaking.

The caricature of Republicans is that they are heartless and uncaring, but then you see a Democrat-run city like San Francisco spend all of its money on Pride Parades and a massive construction project to extend the rail system to the new Chase Center, the future home of the Golden State Warriors. Yes, the arena itself is privately financed, but the infrastructure costs around it will come from taxpayers. And all of those taxes are being spent to make it easier for people to hand over even more of their money to the greedy capitalist who owns the team. As Instapundit always asks, “why are democrat-run cities such cesspits?”

Is it possible that the Democrats who run San Francisco are using the Gay Pride movement as a “shiny object” to lure people to this supposedly “enlightened” city to take their tax dollars while distracting them from the fact that they get nothing in return but the opportunity to dress up in weird outfits and vent for a day? What is there to be proud of in that?

In Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission, the Supreme Court (thankfully) ruled in favor of Jack Phillips, the baker who declined to be forced to bake and decorate a custom cake to celebrate a same-sex wedding. The ruling was based almost completely on the documented religious hostility of the members of the Civil Rights Commission, and thus there is concern that in the future the Court would allow government to force bakers and other service providers to support same-sex weddings over their religious objections as long as the bureaucrats pretended to be neutral to the baker’s religious views.

There are a few fig leaves in the decision that an optimist could take as good news, such as Justice Kennedy saying “the religious and philosophical objections to gay marriage are protected views and in some instances protected forms of expression,” and that “government has no role in deciding or even suggesting whether the religious ground for Phillips’ conscience based objection is legitimate or illegitimate.” And at least he conceded that “a member of the clergy who objects to gay marriage on moral and religious grounds could not be compelled to perform the ceremony without denial of his or her right to the free exercise of religion.”

The path to the case, if not necessarily the decision, in Masterpiece Cakeshop, is an easy one to follow.  It started back in 2003 with Lawrence v. Texas, which found a constitutional right to Liberty as exemplified by homosexual sodomy in that particular case (although Justice Kennedy, in his majority opinion explicitly refused to declare that homosexual sodomy itself is a constitutional right). Justice Scalia correctly predicted the path in his dissenting opinion, noting that the decision “leaves on pretty shaky grounds state laws limiting marriage to opposite-sex couples.”

The next step in the chain was United States v. Windsor in 2012, which ruled the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) unconstitutional. Justice Scalia and Chief Justice Roberts both pointed out that this Justice Kennedy’s majority opinion would inevitably lead to the Court declaring same-sex “marriage” to be a constitutional right, which of course it did in Obergefell v. Hodges in 2015 (also authored by Kennedy). This is where Justice Thomas presciently predicted that the decision “threatens the religious liberty our Nation has long sought to protect.” And here we are.

A lot of the analysis of Masterpiece Cakeshop centered around whether baking a custom wedding cake counted as “speech” for the purposes of the Free Speech clause of the first amendment. And was Phillips really discriminating against the gay couple when he offered to sell them anything else in the store, or to create a cake for any other occasion? The answer is obviously “no” and therein, I think, lies the solution to this conundrum.

As I have said before, no one has a right to force someone else to provide a good or service. If Phillips had refused to sell a pre-baked cake to the gay couple, that would have been discriminatory since he had already invested his time and talent to create the cake and it was already available for purchase by the general public. This would be the same as if a gay couple tried to by a photo print from a studio where the photographer was displaying his images for sale. But in either case, the gay couple does not have the right to force the baker or photographer to participate in a gay wedding if the vendor’s religious beliefs prevent him from doing so. So the government could not force the photographer to attend the ceremony, document the event and then produce the images, all of which require him to devote his time and talent to an event that violates his religious views.

This rule would also apply to the Arlene’s Flowers v. State of Washington case currently being petitioned to the Supreme Court.

If Mrs. Stutzman had refused to sell a floral arrangement available to the general public to a gay customer, she would be guilty of discrimination. But she had sold flowers to the gay couple – whom she considered friends – for years without a problem. It was only when she refused to be forced to design the flowers for their wedding, which involves not only creativity on her part, but also the nuts and bolts of getting the flowers to the ceremony and arranging them there, that she supposedly discriminated against them. Clearly, this is an infringement on her first amendment rights to free expression and freedom of religion.

Justice Kennedy’s reasoning in all of these cases seems to be rooted in the infamous “Sweet Mystery of Life” passage from Planned Parenthood v. Casey, in which he wrote “At the heart of liberty is the right to define one’s own concept of existence, of meaning, of the universe, and of the mystery of human life.”  As Justice Scalia correctly pointed out, this is “the passage that ate the rule of law,” but is nonetheless central to Justice Kennedy’s jurisprudence. A person’s religious views, by definition, define his or her “own concept of existence, of meaning, of the universe, and of the mystery of human life.”

Why is a religious person’s liberty, which is expressly guaranteed by the Constitution, worth less than a gay person’s?

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The Massachusetts Legislature is apparently trying to out-California California by considering House Bill 4014, “An Act relative to abusive practices to change sexual orientation and gender identity in minors.” The bill would prohibit any kind of counseling or therapy, even just talking, aimed at helping a confused minor be comfortable in his or her own body. If a parent seeks such counseling for a confused minor who thinks himself or herself to be “transgender,” the bill would consider that a form of child abuse. As Andrew Beckwith, president of the Massachusetts Family Institute, has aptly put it, “This is a bill that would allow the state to take away your daughter and make her someone else’s son.”

The bill was originally written several years ago by former state representative Carl Sciortino, who is now executive director of the AIDS Action Committee, which focuses on the health needs of LGBT people. He (it’s not clear if this is his “preferred pronoun” but I don’t really care) claims that “the point of this bill is that if a young person has an identity and is being told by a so-called therapist that they can change their identity, that is a false hope and abusive and shouldn’t be allowed by licensed professionals in this state.” He declares it to be a “false claim” that a therapist can help a gay or trans person become straight. Sciortino actually admits that the bill could cause the state to remove a child from parents who refuse to mutilate or chemically sterilize their child who claims to be “transgender.”

One would think that such a bill would violate the First Amendment on its face, but I’m still trying to figure out how anyone who supports such a bill can claim even a shred of logical reasoning behind their thinking.

Sciortino clearly believes that LGBT people are “born that way” since changing a person’s belief about his or her sexuality or gender is a “false claim.” But since being gay or transgender makes it biologically impossible to reproduce naturally, this position is clearly at odds with Darwinian evolution, which requires reproduction in order to pass on genetic mutations to the next generation. It is simply not possible for LGBT behaviors to be based on genetics.

Being transgender means that a person is more comfortable acting in stereotypical gender roles which, until fifteen minutes ago we were told were socially constructed. Thus we find the ridiculous argument that a “transgender female” can also be a lesbian. That is, a man’s desire to dress as a woman – a completely social construct – makes him more a woman than his attraction to women, which is biologically normal, makes him a man. The whole idea of transgenderism is a house of cards held up only by incessant propaganda.

As with the Bathroom Bill, I am appalled that the Legislature could even consider a bill that obviously has no logical basis for criminalizing activity simply because some misguided souls don’t like that behavior. If the bill’s supporters want to outlaw truly abusive therapy like electro-shock, then write a bill that specifically outlaws abuse. But to criminalize a parent’s desire to counsel a confused child to live as God intended, and define as child abuse a parent’s refusal to chemically alter the child irrevocably based on the child’s confusion is simply abominable. We must oppose this misguided bill. If you are a Massachusetts citizen, I urge you to contact your State Representative and Senator to make your voice heard.

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Politics is downstream of culture.          -Andrew Breitbart

Between network television and Netflix, I have been watching three separate series that all take place in and around the White House: “Designated Survivor,” “Madame Secretary,” and “House of Cards.” House of Cards is fun (although there are plenty of disturbing scenes made for fast-forward) because it makes no pretense that anyone in politics is motivated by anything other than naked self-interest and the pursuit of power. To be honest, I’m a bit surprised that it aired during the Obama administration, and with the Underwoods being democrats, too.

Madame Secretary was clearly developed to promote Hillary for president. If you realize that going in, you can laugh at the typical tropes like “Global Climate Change is the single biggest threat to our national security,” the non-gender-conforming policy advisor, and even the fantastical “Iran Deal” that could only be negotiated in a television show. Given the failure of this show to drag Clinton over the finish line resulting in (I love saying this) President Trump, the next goal of the show will be to show everyone how awesome it will be when we have a woman president.

Designated Survivor is perhaps the most subtle of the three. It stars Kiefer Sutherland (formerly Jack Bauer in “24”) as Tom Kirkman, the former HUD Secretary who gets thrust into the presidency after a terrorist attack during the State of the Union. Of course, the original Muslim suspect turned out to be a decoy and the real mastermind was actually an evil capitalist. Sutherland portrays the president as a non-partisan straight shooter, but it’s clear that he and his staff are anything but. In a recent episode, they were trying to nominate a “progressive icon” to the Supreme Court. Everyone was excited about how much “good” he could do on the Court which, of course, is not the job of a Supreme Court Justice. Interestingly, in a nod to the #metoo movement, the nomination was derailed due to a past sexual harassment claim that was initially only deemed a problem because “the Republicans control the Judiciary Committee.” I guess they were admitting that Democrats would have overlooked such things just to get a progressive on the court.

All three are entertaining, but keep your antennae up and be on the lookout for propaganda. And try not to get confused by the different Oval Office decorations.

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