Guns. Supreme Court. Abortion. Immigration. Those were the first four topics in the first three questions from Wednesday night’s debate (2nd Amendment and the Supreme Court were squeezed into the first question). On these issues, which are arguably the four most divisive between the two candidates, Donald Trump was composed, informed, and surprisingly eloquent. He was able to portray his thoughts intelligently without sounding too rehearsed. With Chris Wallace at the helm asking questions about issues, the first 30 minutes of this debate were the best 30 minutes Trump has had in any debate, including the primaries.

He exuded the presence of a President more than he’s ever done in his life.

It went downhill from there, though not as badly as it will be portrayed. Mainstream media will condemn him for declaring that he won’t necessarily accept the results of the election. I’ll cover that more shortly, but let’s look at his other mistakes:

  • When she called him a puppet, his inner middle-schooler said, “No, you’re the puppet.” It’s already a viral Vine with hundreds of thousands of loops and rapidly rising.
  • When asked about entitlements, he talked about improving the economy and jobs which absolutely won’t fix entitlements without a major overhaul.
  • Lastly, he called her a nasty woman. She is, but that’s not going to help him score points with women, especially after drawing chuckles from the audience when he said nobody has more respect for women than he does.

There were other little mistakes, but all in all this was his best, most error-free debate. It also showed something to the conservatives in the #NeverTrump crowd: he might not be as far from their perspectives as they’ve been led to believe. His grasp of Heller far exceeded hers (no, Heller was not about toddlers, Hillary). His attack on partial birth abortion was spot-on and Hillary botched her response. Then, his vow and reiteration of appointing conservative pro-life Supreme Court justices was reassuring.

In those first 30 minutes, the all-important undecided Republicans and conservatives were given everything they would need to lean in his direction. Now, we’ll get to see the media playing up his unwillingness to definitively state that he’d accept the results of the election.

It will be an ineffective attack. To understand why, we have to look at the psychological effects that his stance will have on each type of voter.

Those firmly in the Clinton camp will take those words and move their chances of voting for him from 0% to -1%. Nothing lost there.

For those firmly in Trump’s camp, they’ll be cheering him on. Darn tootin’ they won’t accept the results if Trump doesn’t. It’s war!

Undecided Republicans will be a little affected by the notion, but the reiteration that election fraud is real combined with not accepting the results will push more towards him than away.

Undecided Democrats and Independents – here’s where it gets a little weird. Most of them won’t care enough to be swayed by the notion, but some will unconsciously lean towards him as a result. Why? Because it reinforces their feelings that the system is broken, that he’ll fight the system, and that they don’t want added chaos. Whether they realize it or not, the more that the media covers it, the more the undecided Democrats and Independents will consider Trump. Those who are undecided on the left are undecided because they really don’t like Hillary.  If they liked her, they’d already be supporting her. The fact that they’re considering Trump means that his defiance to the system and antagonism of Clinton will be a plus.

Does this mean Trump will win? Unlike many self-proclaimed pundits, I don’t see this election as one that can be determined until election day. Nate Silver puts Trump’s chances below 20%. I tend to see it as still a tossup because 2016 is insane but more importantly because Trump is outperforming her on the issues. Tonight, it wasn’t even close. The only times Clinton sounded half-decent at all was when she was attacking Trump and/or pandering to women and minorities. On the actual issues, she sounded like a 3rd semester political science major with average grades and a crush on her professor. Trump sounded like he knew the issues.


The New York Times’ decision to draw a line in the sand against Donald Trump’s threat to file a libel suit may come back to haunt the news organization.

The issue involves a story about two women who allege that the presidential candidate groped or kissed them without their consent. In a letter asking for a retraction, Trump’s attorney claimed the article was libelous, reckless and defamatory. The Times’ attorney fired back: “…[I]f he believes that American citizens had no right to hear what these women had to say and that the law of this country forces us and those who would dare to criticize him to stand silent or be punished, we welcome the opportunity to have a court set him straight.”

The Times’ response is extraordinary in that most news organizations, when facing such a threat, issue the appropriate response: “We stand by our story.”

As an expert witness in nearly 30 defamation lawsuits, I have never seen a news organization take such a combative and public stance except in the courtroom. But The Times’ lawyer seemed pleased with the response. See

This immediate and rather vitriolic letter places The Times with both feet in the presidential muck that this campaign has become. No longer is the news organization standing above the fray.

In an editorial, The Times lectured Trump on constitutional law. “it should come as no surprise that Donald Trump, the Republican nominee for president, is as ignorant about constitutional law as he is about every other matter pertinent to the nation’s highest office.”

The editorial noted Times v. Sullivan, the important case that defined the tenets for a successful libel suit against a public official, which was extended to a public figure in a later case. Trump would have to prove the Times engaged in reckless disregard of the truth.

What The Times failed to mention is another important libel case: Herbert v. Lando.

Anthony Herbert was a U.S. Army officer in Vietnam who claimed he witnessed war crimes that his commanding officer refused to investigate. In a 1973 report on 60 Minutes, correspondent Mike Wallace and producer Barry Lando argued that Herbert had lied and was himself guilty of war crimes. The Army officer filed a libel suit.

Even though CBS eventually won the suit, the U.S. Supreme Court provided plaintiffs like Herbert, and potentially Trump, the ability to investigate the “state of mind” of journalists while they are reporting a story.

“When a member of the press is alleged to have circulated damaging falsehoods and is sued for injury to the plaintiff’s reputation, there is no privilege under the First Amendment’s guarantees of freedom of speech and freedom of the press barring the plaintiff from inquiring into the editorial processes of those responsible for the a publication.”

I doubt the news organization wants to have its editorial process placed under a microscope. The Times may win the battle and lose the war. To wit, I do stand by my story.

Christopher Harper, a recovering journalist with The Associated Press, Newsweek, ABC News and The Washington Times, teaches media law


As a general rule there are not a lot of reasons for conservatives in Massachusetts to smile come election time but WCVB polls on Question 2, the expansion of charter schools in the state is an exception:

On charter schools, 49 percent of likely voters support the question and 39 percent oppose, with 12 percent unsure. With leaners, the support goes up to 52 percent and opposition to 41 percent.

These polling stats come despite the opposition of such liberal icons as Senator Elizabeth Warren coming out against Question 2. And the NAACP maintaining its opposition to such schools.

In fact there has been a divide on the question amongst liberals  with the Boston Globe editorializing against fiscal objections to charter schools and some Cambridge city officials  spitting from their fellows on question 2.

US News has noticed this split between the liberal grass-roots and their leadership on this issue

But why do many civil rights groups oppose charters? The more deeply one looks, the more puzzling the question. Unlike rank-and-file teachers, the African-Americans we surveyed support charters by a nearly two to one margin. Forty-eight percent of African Americans say they favor the formation of charters, while only 29 percent stand in opposition, with the remainder taking the neutral position. In fact the opinions of African-Americans resemble those of the American public as a whole – 51 percent support, 28 percent oppose, 21 percent neutral. A March Boston Globe poll found much the same level of support for charters in the Bay State as we found nationally, both among the public as a whole and among all demographic groups.

Not only does the black community support charters, but African-American students enjoy over-representation in charter schools. According to the U. S. Department of Education 27 percent of all charter students are black, even though black students constitute only 16 percent of the overall public school population. Hispanic students at charters (30 percent) are slightly over-represented, as their share of the school-age population is 25 percent. But white students constitute just a quarter of the enrollees at charters, even though they are half of all students attending public school. Mysteriously, the NAACP calls this segregation

This divide has not slowed down the teachers unions and their allies.  In my home town of Fitchburg a local office opened up in the parkhill plaza area with a big sign Fitchburg Educational Association over it.  This has been a source of the lawn signs against question two that have popped up all over town.  In my travels I’ve yet to notice any such comparable effort locally on the other side.

Of course it could be the reason for the inactivity of the pro-question 2 side might be a decision to allow the results from the Sizer School, the local charter serving grades 7-12 speak for itself

the Massachusetts Department of Education released the accountability results for schools across the state. Sizer School, a 7-12 public charter in Fitchburg, has reached Level 1 status – an exciting accomplishment. In the aggregate and by subgroup, Sizer students met state targets for achievement. Sizer also saw strong improvement in subgroup performance in English Language Arts, and in moving students from warning/failing into proficient, and from proficient to advanced. This benchmark is due to the achievement and dedication of Sizer staff, students, and families. It represents diligence and is the result of hard work to ensure students understand and are able to demonstrate mastery of content and concepts in a testing environment.

According to the Massachusetts State 2016 glossary of accountability terms level one means?

Massachusetts’ Framework for District Accountability and Assistance classifies schools and districts on a fivelevel scale, classifying those meeting their gap narrowing goals in Level 1 and the lowest performing in Level 5. Approximately eighty percent of schools are classified into Level 1 or 2 based on the cumulative PPI for the “all students” and high needs groups. For a school to be classified into Level 1, the cumulative PPI for both the “all students” group and high needs students must be 75 or higher.

It defines “high needs students” as:

The high needs group is an unduplicated count of all students in a school or district belonging to at least one of the following individual subgroups: students with disabilities, English language learners (ELL) and former ELL students, or economically disadvantaged students. For a school to be considered to be making progress toward narrowing proficiency gaps, the cumulative PPI for both the all students group and high needs students must be 75 or higher.

Sizer school scored 76 on all students and an even higher 78 for “high needs” students.

Meanwhile according to state stats Fitchburg in General (Level 3 62/60) and the schools servicing comparable grade levels   Fitchburg high  (Level 3 60/51)   Longsjo Middle school (Level 2 74/68)  and Memorial Middle School (Level 3 61/53) did not do so well.

On the minus side Sizer overall performance relative to other schools in same school type was 40 meaning that 60 percent of comparable schools scored better.  That might have been a good talking point for the folks at the Fitchburg Educational Association trying to move voters in Fitchburg voters if it wasn’t for the fact that Longsjo Middle school relative overall performance score was a 23, Memorial Middle school  a 22 and Fitchburg high a lowly 10 barely making double digits.

As election day grows nearer those opposed to charter school expansion in Massachusetts find themselves in the same position as Senator Richard Russell of Georgia who during the debate on the Civil Rights Act of 1957 had a memorable exchange over the need for a such a law with Senator Pat McNamara of Michigan on the senate floor.  Russell arguing for the status quo, noted McNamara’s stated racial issues in Michigan could be handled without outside interference and asked “Then, why does not the senator let us [in the south] do the same?”  McNamara, in a loud voice answered the argument for maintaining things as they were by saying:  “Because you’ve had ninety years and haven’t done it.”

That’s the dilemma of those hoping to reverse those polling numbers.  If the local schools had produced results that parents wanted for their children the whole question of charter schools would be moot.  But as long as the stats from the state and more importantly the results that are visible to the voters every time their children come home from school remain what they’ve been for years, lawn signs not withstanding the argument for the status quo will remain a difficult sell.

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By John Ruberry

A couple of headlines caught my attention this afternoon. Here’s one: “WikiLeaks Releases More Purported Emails, Bringing Total To More Than 11,000,” comes from NPR. Wow. This federally funded news outlet I guess “forgot” that the victim of the hack, Hillary Clinton campaign chair John Podesta, admitted that his private emails were illegally breached. But he added, without evidence, that some of that correspondence may have been altered. Bloomberg writes, “WikiLeaks Releases More Alleged E-Mails From Top Clinton Aide.” Bloomberg: Are you paying attention?

So yes, Podesta’s emails were hacked. By whom? The Clinton campaign is blaming the Russian government, offering little in proof, although this morning on Fox News Sunday, Donald Trump’s running mate, Mike Pence says “the evidence continues to point in that direction.” The Clinton campaign, outside of Podesta, refuses to acknowledge the legitimacy of these emails, claiming that the Russians are trying to sway the results of this autumn’s election, while deflecting findings from those emails, which include Bill Clinton receiving a $1 million birthday check for the Clinton Foundation–the charity is really a slush fund, by the way–from the government of Qatar, which we learn from another email, is funding ISIS, or at least Hillary Clinton believes so.

Did Russia write that $1 million check?

John ruberry
John “Lee” Ruberry of the Magnificent Seven

Also learned from those purported emails was that there was an anti-Catholic email exchange between Podesta, Jennifer Palmieri, communications director of the campaign, and John Halpin of the leftist Center for American Progress. If the trio had discussing Islam in the same manner, they’d almost certainly be looking for new jobs now.

And those revelations are just the ones on the top of the Podesta email pile.

But a couple of media outlets, probably more, apparently believe that by questioning the legitimacy of these alleged emails, people may doubt their veracity.

I don’t think it’s going to work. Not this time. We’re not as dumb as the media elites believe.

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.

This week James O’Keefe released a hidden camera video that showed a NYC voting commissioner admitting that Democrats are busing black, hispanic and chinese voters through the city to vote multiple times. (and it appears that revelation got him locked out of twitter to suppress it.

Yesterday at this site Fausta told the story of the Hillary Clinton team manipulating hispanic voters that she witnessed.

And we’ve seen story after story about registering the dead this year.

However all these revelations mean nothing if the media doesn’t cover them and the legal system doesn’t act. And given the record of the media and the justice system we see no reason for them to either do so or independently enforce the law if it might cost Hillary Clinton votes.

So we have to act ourselves. Here is what I suggest:

  1. Rather than watching the polls in the big cities, we need citizen journalists to watch the BUSSES.

If our friend on the left are busing repeaters they will need busses. Therefore that means they are either renting busses or own busses to do this.

If I was the GOP or Trump fans I’d position people to check for said busses, to film them and trail them once they are spotted and upload the video as it happens in every major city. The moment a bus stops at a 2nd polling station and a person gets out to vote a 2nd time shot the video and presto proof of a federal offense.

Secondly if I was the GOP in Florida I’d be sending people to spanish neighborhoods, look for people who have been visited by the Clinton folks per this post and were tricked into signing that form, then search for absentee ballots in their name.

It is vital that this stuff get documented in preparation of a class action suit on behalf of every American voter who has been robbed of the franchise by this fraud.

Then it will be up to our media and our institutions, will they take action or will they make the mistake of the church to hide their disgrace.

If these people are going to steal an election we need to establish its illegitimacy by all legitimate means. And if our government and our media decides to ignore the facts, then we need to treat this election result and the government it produces an the institutions that cover it up as illegitimate.

Our friends on the left and their institutions are counting on us resigning ourselves to this. We must resolve not to.

I know that’s drastic but the alternative is self delusion, and I will not have it.

There are hardcore supporters who have been there from the beginning for Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. It was these supporters who helped propel each to their party’s nomination and nothing that comes out between now and election day will change their minds. Most of the rest of us have been forced to take a hardline approach as well. In this late hour, the accumulation of October surprises will not change our voting preference. The surprises are THAT bad; Trump’s locker room talk is countered by Hillary’s Wikileaks corruptions which counter accusations made against Trump which counter Hillary’s attacks on the pro-life movement which counter… you get the point.

In other words, a large percentage (I’d put the number north of 50%) of the electorate will vote for a candidate that they only support because they believe the other major candidate would be worse. Never has any living generation of Americans seen a full-fledged race to the bottom like this one. This election won’t be won. The next President will be the candidate that loses less. We’re stuck having to fake enthusiasm for one candidate because we can’t imagine America with the other candidate in charge. I know many of the readers are full-blown supporters of Trump and that’s your prerogative. I will never support, endorse, or vote for Hillary, so at least we have that in common.

Regardless of who wins on November 8th, it’s imperative that on November 9th we evaluate what brought us here and make the choice to never let it happen like this again. I’m not talking about figuring out how Hillary evaded jail or why the best batch of conservative candidates the GOP has ever seen were summarily dispatched by a liberal and his wall. It’s time to take a look at the fundamental problems in Washington DC and across the country that prevent the obvious solution of Constitutional conservatism from having its day leading in the halls of government. As Bobby Johns pointed out in his passionate attack on liberalism in Congress, only three Senators and fourteen Congressman score an “A” on Conservative Review’s scorecard. Most GOP Senators and Congressmen score an “F” which means that they are slightly right-leaning at best.

This is why President Obama has never had a problem getting every single thing he’s ever wanted in the last eight years budgeted, including over the two years that Republicans have held a majority in both chambers.

This is why Planned Parenthood always gets funded.

This is why the internet is no longer under U.S. control.

This is why the one time Congress was able to reverse a Presidential veto, it was on a bill that affects less than 1% of 1% of Americans. The only reason it succeeded was because retiring Harry Reid was the only Senator willing to side with Saudi Arabia over families of 9/11 victims. In an election year, the President never had a chance. His veto was symbolic.

The problem isn’t that we don’t have enough Republicans in office. The problem is that we don’t have enough principles in the people holding those offices. We need a party that holds conservative principles at the highest level, that throws political expediency out the window. We need voters to learn the principles that propelled this nation to its pinnacle. Most of those principles are found in the words of the Constitution. Others can be found in the examples of the men and women who defend them. Any politician who refuses to wholeheartedly keep the oath of defending the Constitution does not deserve our vote.

This year, it’s too late. Principles have been abandoned by both major parties. This is why it’s important to build a new one. If the party of Lincoln, Coolidge, and Reagan has moved so far to the middle that conservatism has become a co-opted punchline used during campaign season, then examining our course through the lens of principles is our best course of action after the election.

Update (DTG): As you know I don’t censor my writers and respect their opinions but tomorrow morning I’ll give a short answer as to what he’s missing here.

What Donald Trump said about women is indefensible. What Hillary Clinton has done is even more indefensible.

Take her time, for example, as secretary of state. Clinton had one major accomplishment during her tenure: she traveled a lot.

As Foreign Affairs put it when Clinton stepped down in 2013, “She leaves office without a signature doctrine, strategy or diplomatic triumph.”

That’s a kind assessment. In fact, she left a lot of wreckage during her four years in office.

One of the more troubling is U.S. relations with Russia.

Most Americans would blame Russian President Vladimir Putin for our poor relations, but he only maneuvered as a result of the weakness of U.S. policy.

Syria has been part of the Russia sphere of influence, starting during the 1960s. If the United States wasn’t going to intervene, it needed to quickly discuss the situation with Putin. Clinton didn’t seek out the Russians, leaving her successor, John Kerry, to mess up the situation even more.

Whatever happened to the Russian reset Clinton and Obama talked so much about?

The Russian leader, like his predecessors, seized on weaknesses. The absence of clear American failure in the Middle East sent Putin a message that he could do whatever he wanted to do in Ukraine.

Now he has reportedly started to move nuclear weapons to Kaliningrad, a Russian outpost sandwiched between Poland and Lithuania. The reason? To establish Russian hegemony over the Baltic Sea.

Masha Gessen, who wrote a biography of Putin, dispels a number of myths in a recent column:

–Putin has not thrown his support behind Trump. The Russian leader has only mentioned the GOP nominee in passing. It is true Putin does not like Hillary because he blames her for inciting demonstrations against him in 2011-2014.

–Putin has not made Russia great again. The oil glut has taxed people’s income, and crime has become rampant in major cities.

–Russians do not overwhelmingly support Putin. His approval ratings are high, but the rest of the government, which rubber stamps his policies, get low marks.

–Russian society is not conservative. People have quite liberal views on abortion and sex.

–Russia’s policies are not simply a reaction to U.S. policies. Russia acts in its own self-interest as it it in Crimea.

Here is the column:

The next president needs a serious reset with Putin. He’s tough and smart. He’s hardly the caricature the media use to portray him. He’s a leader of one of the most important countries in the world, and the United States needs to figure out a way to discuss the relationship between the two countries. Clinton has certainly failed to do that.

If Clinton is elected president, she will start with two major enemies: China and Russia. If Trump is elected, at least he would start out with only one, China, and the possibility of restoring some sense of order with Russia.

Christopher Harper, a recovering journalist with The Associated Press, Newsweek, ABC News and The Washington Times, teaches media law.




Every pundit will have an opinion based upon their own biases and their news agency’s preferences. Some will highlight the move Donald Trump made to threaten Hillary Clinton directly. What they probably won’t mention is that from a purely strategic perspective, his charge that as President he would appoint a special prosecutor to “look into” Clinton’s “situation” was absolutely brilliant.

A large percentage of American voters generally do not like nor trust Hillary Clinton. The same could be said about Trump, but there’s a difference. They don’t like Trump for his personality, privilege, and/or policies. They don’t like Hillary because she should almost certainly be in jail. For three decades, she has evaded the law. The accusations against her are numerous and many of them are extremely serious even if you discount conspiracy theories about her alleged “hits” on political liabilities. She has been demonstrated to be a liar and a cheat, but it’s worse. She’s gotten away with things that others could not and that makes her scorned even by people who want to vote for her.

Undecided voters now have something to weigh against Trump’s damaging recordings from last week. Do they want to harm Trump for his misogyny or do they want to empower him to take out Clinton? Whether undecided voters realize it or not, the notion of seeing someone in power held accountable is extremely appealing to them from a psychological perspective. They don’t like it when the powerful get special treatment. They don’t like it when the powerful get away with things that average Americans could not.

By itself, his call for a special prosecutor was a strong statement, but it was his mic drop moment a couple of minutes later that really punctuated it in the minds of undecided voters:


It won’t matter who pundits say “won” this debate. In reality, it was a debacle from start to finish thanks to poor moderators and mostly terrible questions. Nevertheless, the winner when it comes to putting sway on undecided voters was, through the subtle effects of his promise, Donald Trump.

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By John Ruberry

The Washington Post has long been a leftist publication, in the 1970s it was dubbed “Pravda on the Potomac” by conservatives.

The newspaper has gotten worse since then, even after its purchase in 2013 by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos.

On Friday it released a 2005 video of Donald Trump in a hot-mic conversation with Billy Bush of Access Hollywood as he very crudely discusses his sexual moves on women. In his apology the Republican presidential nominee categorized his behavior as “locker-room banter,” but the reality is that most men, or even high school sophomores, don’t speak in that manner about women, at least in such explicit detail. Trump needs to make one more apology added with a vow never to discuss women in that fashion for as long as he lives.

While NBC, which owns Access Hollywood, not surprisingly had the video clip first, it was cognizant of it on Monday. But while the network’s lawyers were still reviewing the clip, an anonymous source alerted the Post about it on Friday, four hours later it went live on the newspaper’s website.

But who was that source?

In a July Wikileaks release, Greg Sargent, who writes the Plum Line blog for the Post–most of the its blogs are leftist electronic rags–was exposed as a shill for the Democratic National Committee. Lee Cary in the American Thinker laid down how the DNC propaganda treadmill works at the Post. Sargent gets a tip of slanted information from the DNC, which of course he doesn’t credit in his blog entry. Writers higher up on the Post food chain credit the Plum Line on this “scoop,” other media sources credit the Post, when in fact the “news” is really a disguised Democratic Party informercial.

How many other shills such as Sargent at the Post have yet to be exposed?

“According to the Washington Post” is a much more convincing article lead-in than “According to a Democratic Party press release.”

John "Lee" Ruberry of the Magnificent Seven
John “Lee” Ruberry of the Magnificent Seven

Back to the Trump tape. Yes, it’s newsworthy, but if the DNC was the Post’s source, shouldn’t its readers know about that? Remember, there’s a conveyor line of information coming from the Democrats to the Washington Post. Here’s another question: Let’s say a similarly damaging recording of Hillary Clinton was out there and the Post became aware of it. Would the Post run with that story? Or does the paper ignore it, using feeble excuses that it is “old news” or “not relevant to the political discussion.”

Win or lose this autumn, conservative bloggers and activists need to widen the battlefield and include what Trump rightly calls the “dishonest media” in the war for America. The establishment media, with a few exceptions, is a leftist cabal. If we successfully expose them to the masses, we’ll discover that defeating the Democrats will be surprisingly easy.

Don’t worry about Greg Sargent. I’m sure he has a job waiting for him at the Democratic National Committee if things stop working out for him at the Post. Or in a Hillary Clinton presidential administration.

John Ruberry regularly blogs Marathon Pundit.

Tonight’s debate is going to go like this.

Moderator to Mike Pence: Donald Trump said x Will you denounce him?

Moderate to Tim Kaine Gov Kaine, Can you explain why Gov Pence should have denounced Donald Trump?

Moderator to Tim Kaine: Gov Kaine are the attacks on Hillary Clinton sexist?

Moderator to Mike Pence: Gov Pence, will you denounce your sexist attacks on Hillary Clinton?

Tonight debate is going to be like the old joke about the Soviets from the cold war, where an American is speaking to a Russian saying:

“Our country is free, we can criticize and protest our government and president, without fear of retaliation.”

and the Russian turns back to him and says: Our country is free too, we an criticize an protest your government an president without fear of retaliation too!”

Of course as any tea party member or contributor who has suddenly found themselves audited by the IRS will tell you that’s no longer the case in the Obama years and such behavior if rewarded by Hillary Clinton’s election will become the norm.

The Terracotta Warriors from the creation of China
The Terracotta Warriors from the third century B.C. underscore the longstanding power of China. (Photo by Chris Harper)

For the United States to have an effective policy with China, Americans have to stop buying iPhones. Or Apple has to move some of its production facilities from China. And a whole lot more.

The trade imbalance between the two countries is so out of whack, amounting to a deficit of more than $300 billion a year for the United States, that the American government cannot put any significant pressure on China. Moreover, the Beijing government owns more than 7 percent of the U.S. debt. China has a lot of leverage.

Sanctions and tariffs usually don’t work. It would help if Apple would move its production plants from China to South Korea, for example, but educating consumers about the implications of buying Chinese products might also work.

After visiting and teaching in China during the past two years, I offer a few insights:

–President Xi Jinping is the most powerful, politically savvy and intelligent leader in recent history.
–The pivot toward Asia under the Obama administration has been laughable, including alliances with some dreadful regimes in Vietnam, Laos and the Philippines.
–China’s so-called “belt-and-road” program to build infrastructure from mainland Asia to Europe has been a resounding success despite U.S. naysayers. For more about the economic plan, see
–The presidential election has made the United States a laughingstock among Chinese.

President Obama’s recent Asian excursion underlines how poorly the United States is doing. The Chinese made him disembark from the back of the plane. The government restricted his access to the media, and officials got into a shouting match with his aides. The president then got dissed by the government of Laos and the Philippines.

These incidents don’t bode well for any resolution to China’s desire to control economic and military sway over the South China Sea—an issue that does matter. That route controls access to billions of dollars in fishing, minerals and petroleum for a range of Asian countries.

The most recent U.S. policy has been to confront Chinese vessels—an approach that is likely to heighten tensions rather than lessen them.

Neither presidential candidate offers much hope in dealing effectively with China. Clinton is likely to continue gunboat diplomacy, while Trump wants tariffs against Chinese products. These inept approaches are troubling because China is the leading competitor of the United States for the hearts, minds and pocketbooks of the rest of the world.

Christopher Harper, a recovering journalist with The Associated Press, Newsweek, ABC News and The Washington Times, teaches media law.





There’s a voting block that has received nearly zero attention this election year from the Presidential candidates. Hillary Clinton doesn’t have to say much because her progressive perspectives are natural and assumed. Donald Trump has mentioned it one time in a single sentence in 16 months. Gary Johnson has oddly avoided it altogether. Homeschooling families, who often vote specifically based upon a candidate’s position on the issue, have been left in the dark with innuendo and assumptions as the only ways for them to formulate an opinion. Even the Home School Legal Defense Association, which almost always endorses someone in elections at every level, is going into the final month unsure of where anybody stands. They haven’t endorsed.

It’s an issue that doesn’t directly affect many Americans because such a small percentage in this country take advantage of this crucial educational option. What people need to realize is that it’s a core issue that indirectly affects all Americans, conservatives in particular. It’s one of the last bastions of defense for those of us who believe that the government should watch our backs and essentially leave us alone otherwise. When the government tells us how we’re allowed to educate our children, the dominoes start falling.

This year marks the first in nearly twenty that my family isn’t homeschooling one of our children. Our youngest is ready to make the transition to a Christian middle school just as her siblings did before her. It’s important to know this because it means I no longer have skin in the game. Unless God grants us another child (we’re not young, but we’re younger than Abraham and Sarah), our homeschooling days are behind us. I no longer have a personal reason to fight for school choice, homeschooling rights, or any other K-12 initiatives. However, I’m a conservative who sees the big picture. Parental rights are right up there with religious liberties and gun ownership as core issues that act as a foundation for everything else.

Is Donald Trump for homeschooling rights? Probably, though his lack of attention has made many homeschoolers wonder if he is even aware of the issue. Is Gary Johnson? Possibly, though his progressive brand of libertarianism as it pertains to religious liberties should make us wonder where he really stands on education. Is Hillary Clinton? Certainly not, though as with everyone else she hasn’t discussed the issue. This is an issue for which every candidate must make their perspectives clear. Nothing implicit; we need an explicit stance that definitively declares where each candidate stands. Why? Because anyone -Republican, Democrat, Libertarian, or Independent – who will fail at protecting our Constitutional rights will first fail to protect homeschooling. It’s a harbinger issue. If they let this fall, they can’t be trusted with bigger problems.

It’s a small issue near the bottom of most conservatives’ checklist, but with such things it’s important to remember the words of Luke 16:10. He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much: and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also in much.

So I watched the debate, and it was terrible. Seriously. I was hoping to watch Trump completely obliterate Hillary, and yet all I saw was a lot of interrupting. As my three year old would say, it was a lot of “Blah Blah Blah.”

But maybe that was the point?

Oddly enough, my wife, who is very anti-Trump and leaning towards simply writing in a candidate, talked to me last night about voting for Trump. She said she fears Hillary and what she would do to the Supreme Court much more than anything Trump has done. She’s also not a fan of Hillary’s foreign policy, which unlike Trump we’ve had a chance to see first hand.

She’s not the only one. More than a few people have come out to me and said they will likely vote Trump because they are legitimately scared of Hillary. They think Trump will moderate his views over time, but that Hillary will simply do whatever she wants.

So it made me wonder: did Trump throw the debate to make people scared? He’s not stupid, and he certainly did well in previous debates. He has plenty of Hillary zingers.

I personally think he did, and did it to scare his base. He’s trying to ruffle the anti-Trumpers, who despite hating him will look at a future with Hillary and be 10 times as scared. I’m betting his debate performance improves such that the last debate is a doozy for Clinton…if she doesn’t fall over from a coughing fit before then.

This post solely represents the view of the author and does not represent the official views of the Department of Defense, Department of the Navy, or any other branch of the US government. All I ask is you get out and vote for someone, because not voting is really un-American.

If you liked this, you might like reading my blog, and maybe even buy my Kids Book on the Navy.

screen-shot-2016-09-27-at-9-04-05-amFor all of the true debaters out there, let’s face it: this was not an actual debate.

The American Debate Association describes how a debate is supposed to work. The debate focuses on a statement, such as “The United States needs a new tax system to create jobs.”

For example, Donald Trump gets first crack in the affirmative, followed by Hillary Clinton in the negative. Each has nine minutes to discuss the question rather than the two-minute soundbites of last night’s debate. Then each one gets to question the other. Then the two debaters get to rebut the other’s argument.

The argument is between the two parties rather than through a moderator. In fact, in an actual debate, there is no moderator. The judges are supposed to stay out of the way.

Since I was in high school, these rules have been the standard. I have no idea why presidential debates don’t use this approach.

It’s probably because the longstanding rules for debate would probably bring more substance without the useless presence of some media darling who has virtually no expertise in the area of domestic and foreign policies.

Despite my misgivings about the format and substance of last night’s debate, I generally think it was a draw, which probably works in Donald Trump’s favor. The MSM gives the nod to Hillary, but that’s not unexpected.

Trump did a relatively good job of explaining his policies on trade and policing, but he fumbled through his response on the birther issue. He rambled as he often does. But he had the best line: Hillary has a lot of experience, but it’s bad experience.

Clinton failed to move the needle on what to do about the self-proclaimed Islamic State and race relations. At times, she seemed robotic.

On more “substantive” matters that usually decide who won and who lost the debate, Trump’s audio was bad at many times during the discussion; both had terrible makeup jobs; the split screen clearly favored Clinton.

What’s amazes me is that the moderator, Lester Holt, failed to ask any substantive questions about emails, Benghazi or the Clinton Foundation. If anything underlines how unnecessary a star moderator is, Holt’s avoidance of certain issues demonstrates why actual debates don’t have moderators.

Howard Kurtz of Fox News provided a relatively good analysis of the debate at

Kurtz argued that Clinton stayed on the offensive while Trump countered with serious issues.

As CBS’s Bob Schieffer put it: Trump didn’t lose any voters; Clinton didn’t gain any.

That seems about right to me.

Christoper Harper, a recovering journalist from The Associated Press, Newsweek, ABC News and The Washington Times, teaches media law.

Those of us who view Hillary Clinton as an existential threat to the United State of America can list dozens of reasons she is unfit for President without breaking an intellectual sweat. The question of whether or not she is better than Donald Trump is something that undecided Independents will answer to determine who wins in November. For many, it will come down to who they dislike or mistrust the least. Depending on what happens between now and then, the out-of-control Black Lives Matter movement may be the one factor that drives Independents to lean towards Trump.

For the sake of her party and base, Hillary has allowed herself to be attached to Black Lives Matter. As hard as this is for many Republicans to accept, I do not believe that she’s actually sympathetic at all to the cause (even a liberal is capable of seeing the indefensible damage they’re doing), but she wouldn’t dare to condemn them in any form or fashion. She needs them to not hate her, to not bring the message to the masses that they prefer one of the third party candidates.

Her problem is quickly manifesting in Charlotte. If reports of a dashcam video showing Keith Scott brandishing a firearm before being shot turns out to be true, then the violence and rioting will be another example of unrighteous anger, destruction of property, and unwarranted violence stemming from the reactionary lack of reason demonstrated by the group.

Hillary can neither distance herself nor embrace them. She’s walking the tightrope of appearing to be sympathetic without sounding as if she approves of their activities. Her Twitter account the last couple of days has had reactions designed to appease every side, followed by a flurry of unrelated Tweets to bury her perspectives away from scrutiny. She’s trying to address the issue with a wave, then change the conversation as quickly as possible. It takes a lot of scrolling to get down to this Tweet:

All of this brings us back to the choice facing Independents. They have a wildcard in Trump and an untrustworthy liar in Hillary. Their cores negate each other in the eyes of many of these voters, which leaves them with a choice based upon emotion. Every time there’s a riot that draws lines between race rather than justice, it’s a reminder that she’s going to perpetuate the problems and magnify the hatred. Just as Trump needs a portion of minority voters to support him, so too does Hillary need Independent white voters to not see her as a threat to their safety.

Riots like the ones in Ferguson, Baltimore, and now Charlotte are reminders to voters that Black Lives Matter can strike them in their own cities. Hillary will be perceived as a supporter of Black Lives Matter no matter how deep in her profile she buries her Tweets. These truly undecided voters will make their final decision based not upon Trump’s rhetoric or Hillary’s scandals. Everyone is well aware of those. They’ll make their final decision based upon how each candidate will directly affect their lives. Every BLM incident, terrorist attack, and crack in Obama’s economy will push them closer to holding their noses and voting for Trump even if they don’t like him.

After all, they really don’t like Hillary, either.

As a business owner, I rely on people to enter into a covenant of sorts. I need them to be there for me and I need to be there for them. As such, it has always been important for me to know them, to have a clear understanding of their capabilities and dedication to the job. The hiring process has always been more than just an interview and a resume; I want to know certain things about people.

Even entry-level positions have certain basic requirements, but when we’re looking for executives, we have to take it up a notch. Three years ago, when I was searching for a partner who could be the chief executive in my current company, it was important to know as much as possible ahead of time. The person I finally chose to partner with went through dozens of meetings. It had to be mutual; we learned more about each other over several months than I would ever share with a close relative. Success is easiest when there are no surprises and after three years, nothing has popped up that I didn’t know about before we started.

The application for President of the United States seems to require much less vetting than my search for the CEO of my business. It shouldn’t be that way. We as a nation are going to enter into a covenant with this person. We have to know them intimately. The way things are today, we are only allowed to know what we’re granted in privilege and we must make this extremely important decision based upon information that others often provide. It shouldn’t be like that. Would we even know that Hillary Clinton had an illness if she hadn’t been caught on camera? No.

Requirements to be President are intentionally vague in the Constitution and I wouldn’t recommend trying to change anything through an amendment, but it would certainly be nice if we could had three basic requirements, even if they were informal but accepted and fulfilled by those seeking the grandest job in the world.

  1. Full Medical Background and Independent Exam: For the sake of keyholder-status, I know more about my partner’s health than I know about my best friend. The likelihood that we are being fed lies by at least one major candidate pertaining to her health is utterly ridiculous. It would be nice if a complete medical history and independent medical examination were required and either made public or given to a Congressional committee for review.
  2. Confidential Background Check, Including Financial Ties: The argument from most Trump supporters who do not call to see his tax returns is that it’s not a requirement and none of our business. Both are true. However, I would certainly feel a lot more comfortable if a Congressional committee or, better yet, a selected group of governors were granted access to a complete background check. That includes tax returns. We don’t need everything spilled onto the table for the world to see, but I’d like to know if there are concerns. A confidential financial and historical investigation of candidates is not too much to ask.
  3. Constitutional Scorecard: The President is sworn to defend the Constitution. There should be no doubt in the minds of the people that the person most responsible for defending the Constitution actually knows the Constitution. They should be required to take a test to at least let us know they have a working knowledge. How can they defend what they don’t understand?

It’s obviously too late this election year to make any changes like these, but we should learn the lessons that have come from it. Are we about to elect a President with major pre-existing medical conditions? Are we about to elect a President who is financially beholden to foreign interests? Are we about to elect a President who doesn’t know the difference between Article II and Article XII of the Constitution? It’s sad that we have to ask these questions.

Be careful what you wish for, Republicans. Hillary Clinton’s medical episode today, officially diagnosed as a result of a three-days of pneumonia, has raised serious questions about her future as the Democratic nominee for President. Pundits are speculating. Some conservative publications are saying, “told you so!” Even some of her most ardent defenders in the press have to admit that it’s worth reporting.

The last thing the GOP should want is for Hillary to drop out. She’s the best possible candidate for Donald Trump to to compete with and possibly the only one who is hated enough for him to defeat. If she’s replaced, the repercussions could be devastating up and down the ticket.

There have been a handful of reports discussing the possible ramifications, most of which are either false or ill-conceived so I won’t link to them from here. Instead, let’s look at this logically and read what the rules say about such things. First, the DNC does not have the same type of established rules that the RNC has in the event of their candidate dropping out. Their bylaws grant the Democratic National Committee broad powers between conventions, including the responsibility to “fill vacancies,” though the nature of those vacancies are not discussed. This is uncharted territory for them. While they do not have the power to replace a candidate that has been nominated at the convention, they have all the power they need if she vacates.

Bernie Sanders supporters are pushing. Speculation about Elizabeth Warren is strong. Tim Kaine’s name has been floated as being pushed to the top of the ticket. At least one publication even considered 36-year-old Chelsea Clinton as an option. Clearly, the most likely replacement, the one that the DNC and power brokers in the Democratic Party would want, is Vice President Joe Biden. Uncle Joe has said that he “regrets every day” that he decided not to run. With under two months to go, his regrets may be reversed as a Biden-Kaine ticket is the most plug-and-play option the Democrats have.

It’s pretty obvious that something is being considered. It would put them in a position that they crave: being the victims of circumstance.

Trump has been compared, erroneously so, as another Barry Goldwater waiting to happen. While that particular debacle of an election has not been possible before, these circumstances change things. Many historians are wrong when they claim that Goldwater lost so horribly because he was too radical which is why most comparisons between Goldwater and Trump are incorrect. Goldwater lost in a landslide because we’ve always been a sentimental nation. John F. Kennedy’s death less than a year before election day guaranteed a huge victory for Lyndon B. Johnson. If Hillary drops out and is replaced by Biden, we might not see the same level of a defeat that Goldwater experienced, but the odds will definitely shift in the Democrats’ favor.

Hillary has lost all momentum and Trump is picking up steam. While it’s futile to speculate what will happen in this topsy-turvy election cycle in the final two months, Trump should be considered the favorite at this point as long as he’s facing Hillary. If a switch is made, we could be seeing Trump TV on the horizon.

911-des-plainesBy John Ruberry

This morning Hillary Clinton suffered what is being called a medical episode in lower Manhattan where she may have fainted, but she certainly had to be helped into a van by campaign aides as her knees wobbled, as you’ll see in a video. She’s was in New York to attend a Ground Zero 9/11 memorial service.

The Clinton campaign claims that the Democratic nominee was “overheated,” but so far there are no reports of anyone else among the thousands in attendance at the somber event being overcome by heat. Temperatures were in the late 70s in New York this morning. Today’s incident comes just six days after a four-minute long coughing spell during a Labor Day speech in Cleveland by Clinton, followed by a shorter one on her campaign jet, which the campaign blithely brushed off as related to allergies. Even hardened liberal Chris Cilizza of the Washington Post says that questions about Hillary’s health are legitimate ones, not just fodder for conservative conspiracy theorists.

Henry Wallace was pushed aside for Truman

It’s been said that Clinton is the most dishonest person to be a major party nominee since Richard M. Nixon. It’s now fair to say that she’s the unhealthiest one to run as a major party choice since another New York state Democrat, Franklin D. Roosevelt, won his his unprecedented fourth-straight presidential election in 1944.

Party bosses knew that FDR was sick in ’44, and fears that Russia-loving leftist Henry A. Wallace, his vice president, could succeed FDR as president was the primary reason Democratic leaders convinced him to dump Wallace as his running mate for Harry S. Truman. The press was rabidly pro-Democrat–sound familiar?–and it had for years covered up that Roosevelt was unable to walk, so it of course assisted in obscuring the president’s newer health concerns. But the what we now call the media didn’t convince everyone. So FDR was compelled to strenuously campaign in the autumn of that year–while of course America was at war–which likely further weakened him.

And how sick was Roosevelt?

In World War II Behind Closed Doors: Stalin, the Nazis, and the West, Lawrence Rees wrote in 2009 about Roosevelt’s health at the Yalta Conference in 1945:

Much has been written about Roosevelt’s physical state at the conference. Those who worked closely with him, like George Elsey, had noticed a profound deterioration of the president’s health over the previous months, and Churchill had remarked on how sick Roosevelt looked at the Quebec meeting in September. At Yalta, Lord Moran, Churchill’s doctor, recorded: “Everyone seemed to agree that the president had gone to bits physically…I doubt, from what I have seen, whether he is fit for his job here.”

John "Lee" Ruberry of the Magnificent Seven
John “Lee” Ruberry of the Magnificent Seven

Roosevelt was clearly duped by Joseph Stalin at Yalta, where he handed eastern Europe to the communists, including Poland, for whom Great Britain and France went to war after the weaker nation was invaded by the Nazis, which of course is how World War II began.

Do we want another ill–or yes, I’m going to say it–dying president to be swindled by another Russian leader? Or by Iran? (Of course, that is what happened with a presumably much healthier Barack Obama.) Or by anyone?

Roosevelt, as we all know, died three months after being sworn-in as president for the fourth time.

Oh, yes, I’m aware the John F. Kennedy had Addison’s disease, which was hidden from the public, but he had suffered from the ailment since the 1940s. His sister, Eunice, also had Addision’s, she died at 88. JFK’s health problems were partially attributed to his abuse of prescription drugs.

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.

We have a unique opportunity as conservatives. Donald Trump is new to politics. He’s malleable or, as he puts it, capable of changing his mind whenever he wants. This is the chance we haven’t had in our lifetimes – to mold Presidential policy by using our voices to let him know what we expect.

Trump supporters may argue that doing so is a sign of disunity and therefore any opposition to his policies is going to help Hillary Clinton win. There are two flaws to this argument. First, no Presidential candidate should be given a free pass to implement their whims without hearing the voice of the people even if such criticism may be viewed poorly by others who are still considering the options. Second, if criticism from the right is enough to make him lose to Hillary, he wasn’t cut out for the nomination in the first place.

Hillary Clinton is the worst Democratic candidate in decades. Even Walter Mondale was better; Ronald Reagan would have won Minnesota and completed the 50 state sweep had he been running against Clinton, though DC would have still probably gone to the Democrats. She has been clearly demonstrated to be a liar, corrupt, and unexceptional in every way. Any GOP candidate with a pulse and conservative policies would be pulverizing her in the polls. Trump needs to step up (and lately, it seems that he’s been doing just that).

Trump is a new to political campaigning. He’s new to conservatism. He’s a “baby Christian” as some have called him. He doesn’t know what he doesn’t know and that can be viewed as either a weakness or an opportunity. I choose to see it as a grand opportunity to point him in the right direction… to the right.

We’ve already seen examples of this. When attempting his leftward lurch on immigration, better known as “the softening,” he received push back from some of his supporters. Frankly, I didn’t think he received enough push back, but it worked. Within a week, he abandoned his toe-dipping into the realm of amnesty-that-shall-not-be-called-amnesty and returned to his original stance. Lately, he’s been hinting at a return to the left on the issue, for which we must continue to apply the pressure.

One does not have to join the #NeverTrump camp in order to oppose some of his policies, nor does one have to support all of his policies if they want him to win. It is imperative that we agree when he’s right and disagree when he’s wrong. He will be wrong on many issues; at heart, he’s still left-leaning and it shows in his proposed policies. If he is to be President, he cannot go down the road of big government and dramatically increased spending. If we say nothing, who will? The left? The Establishment? Only the grassroots and truly conservative politicians will be able to sway him away from any lingering liberal tendencies that are tugging at his heart.

Another major concern is the Supreme Court. Many who are reluctant supporters attribute the SCOTUS as their primary reason for supporting him over Clinton. There’s a problem that is so drastically under-reported that one might consider it to be a conspiracy. Shortly after releasing his amazing list of conservative judges he’d consider for the Supreme Court, he declared that it was just a starting point. Then, during the Republican National Convention in a closed-door meeting, he declared that he had many other names, “fabulous people,” as he put it, who were now on his list. Currently, there is one spot open. There’s a chance that as many as three more will come open in span of his Presidency. Why does he need more than the original 11? Why won’t he release those names? Why won’t he commit to appointing only conservative justices? Is he hedging his bets in case the Democrats take control of the Senate? Is he preparing to use SCOTUS nominations as bargaining chips? We don’t know and currently nobody is willing to ask.

Mark Levin might be the prototype for the type of conservative voice that can support Trump while still holding his feet to the conservative fire. He’s denounced Trump’s $7 trillion retreat on tax cuts. He’s called out his plans to expand government and dramatically increase the national debt. He’s highlighted nearly every liberal policy that Trump has proposed, a large list which seems to be getting bigger. However, he praised him on immigration. He praised the wall. He praised his willingness to act against terrorism and confront the Islamic State. He was #NeverTrump. Now, he’s voting for Trump. In lieu of the example set by so many Trump supporters from average voters to television pundits, Levin has chosen to endorse him with his vote while keeping his leftist policies in view.

Trump’s supporters have a dual-purpose this election year. They need to get him elected and they need to keep pushing him to the right against his leftward lurches. To do one and not the other is inviting the worst-case scenario: a “Republican” President who, in the name of bipartisanship and without the dissent of his constituents, pushes a liberal agenda without opposition.

Flyover country may not be the battleground for the presidential election, but there are many lessons the candidates could learn from the Midwest.

Over Labor Day weekend, I traveled through South Dakota, Minnesota and Iowa. I found almost everyone I talked to held conservative viewpoints.

That shouldn’t come as a surprise, but I only speak in whispers about my viewpoints in my home of Philadelphia, a city dominated by leftists.

At a party, I met someone whose business card proudly displays his email address from At the same soiree, I talked with two old friends from high school. One of them is a prominent businessman in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. The other is a pediatrician in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

Neither one embraces the candidacy of Donald Trump but will likely vote for him given the alternative.

The businessman complained about the government’s heavy hand in regulating his huge enterprise, which started as a string of pharmacies and now has dozens of retail stores throughout the Midwest. He’s amazed at how ineffectively the government performs its duties and how it spends money without much planning. If his operation were so inefficient and costly, he said he’d be out of business.

The physician noted that his practice saw fewer patients because the doctors spent so much time meeting government regulations. He has to prescribe numerous unnecessary tests just to protect himself from lawsuits.

Both of them asked me why colleges cost so much to attend. The problem at my school and others, I told them, was similar to their complaints: excessive government regulation. The administrative structure has almost doubled in the time I started teaching because of government oversight and rules. Because of their inefficiency, some colleges may be pricing themselves out of existence.

The presidential candidates would be well served if they actually listened to the issues on the minds of people in flyover country. Whatever the case, I certainly felt energized by my visit.

Christopher Harper, a longtime journalist with The Associated Press, Newsweek, ABC News and The Washington Times, teaches media law. Read more at


Southwest Detroit
Abandoned home in Southwest Detroit

By John Ruberry

Yesterday Donald Trump continued his outreach to black and inner city voters by speaking at Great Faith Ministries in Detroit’s Barton-McFarland neighborhood. Even on the Motor City’s low standards this is an especially depressed part of the city, three years ago the area just east of Barton-McFarland was named the most dangerous neighborhood in the United States.

Rather than focusing on over fifty years of Democratic failure in the Motor City–Detroit has not had a Republican mayor since 1963, Trump uncharacteristically took a modest tone at Great Faith.

“But today I just want to let you know that I am here to listen to you, and I’ve been doing that and we had a fantastic interview with Bishop [Wayne T.] Jackson.” Trump said from the pulpit. “It was really an amazing interview. He’s better than the people who do that professionally. It’s true, it’s true. He’s better.”

“Our nation is divided. We talk past each other and not to each other.” Trump continued. “And those who seek office do not do enough to step into the community and learn what is going on. They don’t know — they have no clue. I’m here today to learn, so that we can together remedy injustice in any form, and so that we can also remedy economics so that the African-American community can benefit economically through jobs and income and so many other different ways.”

When is the last time Hillary Clinton, in one of her increasingly infrequently public campaign appearances, said she was there to learn?

Trump decried the sidelining so many African America youths with “unfulfilled potential…tremendous potential,” adding, “Our whole country loses out when we’re unable to harness the brilliance and the energy of these folks.”

When Trump was finished speaking he received a standing ovation.Trump Pence

Donald Trump will not win a majority of the black vote in 2016. He won’t even come close. But unlike recent Republican nominees, the political newcomer is campaigning outside of his party’s comfort zone. As a political newcomer, Trump doesn’t reflexively subdivide Americans into different voting blocs. There is too much this-is-a-black-problem-in-the-ghetto type of thinking in this country. What’s wrong in the inner city is an American problem.

Trump gets it.

Related post:

I walked its streets–the tragedy of Detroit

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.

As a husband and father who works far too many hours during the week, I’m a huge fan of making holiday weekends special for the family. These half-dozen or so big holiday weekends should be spent recharging our batteries and reconnecting with those aspects of life that often get lost in our productivity-focused and digitally distracted society. These are the times to let the world be the world so we can focus on the things that are closer to home.

For Labor Day 2016, I’m asking everyone to make an exception.

Yesterday’s big release by the FBI of Hillary Clinton’s email interviews was timed to allow the weight of her deceit and incompetence to fade away with everything else over the long weekend. When the government wants something swept under the rug away from our collective conscience, they do so in a very particular manner. Standard operating procedure is to release it midday on Friday, preferably before a long holiday weekend, so it gets the attention of the press but is pushed aside by a good chunk of the population that has their minds set on hot dogs, family, fireworks, and beer. The story gets coverage when nobody’s looking and then gets tossed in favor of holiday stories. A new week starts on Tuesday when the press has mostly moved on.

Hillary’s email story is one of corruption, lies, and mental breakdowns unbecoming of a President. It must not be swept under the rug. Here are some of the highlights that too few people will see because of the precise timing of the release:

This is all part of a bigger problem in the relationship between mainstream media and the U.S. government, particularly the Democrats. We’ve already seen reporters canned while asking taboo questions about her health. We’ve watched Bill Clinton’s liabilities filtered by mainstream media. We have to dig deep into the realm of obscure conservative media before seeing the reality of Obamacare’s failures.

On this issue of Hillary’s utter failures as a politician and a human being manifested in the way she’s handled and subsequently lied about her emails, we can’t let the media and the government get their wish. As much as it pains me to say so, this weekend is a time to discuss politics even if only in passing. Between the hamburgers and ice cream cones, make sure your cousin knows she lied when she said she set up the server so she could use one device; she had 13 mobile devices attached to her emails. While you’re on your way to see one of the terrible movies Hollywood is offering this weekend, ask your buddies if it’s okay that she wiped her email servers only after the NY Times reported about it. When you get back to work on Tuesday, tell a coworker that you can’t trust someone to be President of the United States if they claim they had no idea how classified intelligence actually worked while Secretary of State.

As some of you know, I’m not a fan of Donald Trump. That fact should compel you to share this story and keep the pressure up on Hillary despite the attempt to turn this scandal into a nothingburger. It’s not just Trump’s biggest fans who are gloating about her failures. Even those of us who aren’t sold on him are utterly aghast at his incompetent competitor.

I woke up unusually early this morning, so I naturally (ehem!) looked up my Twitter feed, and came across this from Juliette,


While I prepared breakfast (huevos rancheros with bacon, in keeping with the tex-mex theme), I pondered the delicious benefits of having a taco truck stop by near my house every day at noon:

  1. A choice of freshly-prepared, tasty food.
  2. It would encourage entrepreneurship and small businesses.
  3. It would probably mean that local governments reduced the red tape associated with such an enterprise – a woman can dream!
  4. Last, but not least, it may put Taco Bell out of business. (Disclosure: I got food poisoning at a Taco Bell years ago.)


It wasn’t until after I finished eating the huevos and bacon and putting away the dishes that I wondered why #TacoTrucksOnEveryCorner trended.

Sooper Mexican explains,

In an absolutely bizarre segment on MSNBC, the Latinos for Trump founder says that if we don’t elect Trump, you’re going to have taco trucks everywhere!!! I’m not sure why he’s against deliciousness, but there you have it.

Say whut?

Sooper Mexican gets to the core issue much better than the guy on TV,

Having been raised in California, I think I get what he’s trying to say, but he’s using the worst example ever because taco trucks are AWESOME. It is true, however, that we’ve been far too lax with illegal aliens in America, and it’s allowed a secondary culture to thrive – one that isn’t assimilating. And that’s a problem. We need to preserve American culture and our principles, and when we don’t even do that among our own native-born kids, we shouldn’t be surprised when immigrants, legal or otherwise, don’t assimilate into that culture either.

But c’mon dude, lay off the taco trucks, they’re amaaazing. That’s the worst argument everrrr!!!

In the interest of culinary diversity, I would not only love a nearby taco truck, but also a gyro truck, a pastrami on rye truck (complete with egg cream, of course), an empanadas truck, and a cubano sandwich truck. On a rotating basis, they would round up the work week nicely.

Speaking of cubano sandwich trucks, if you haven’t seen it yet, watch Chef. Funny and delicious.

Now if you will excuse me, I think I’ll make nachos for lunch.

Fausta Rodriguez Wertz writes on U.S, and Latin American politics, news, and culture at Fausta’s Blog.

CJ Pearson says he supports Donald Trump.
CJ Pearson says he supports Donald Trump.

He’s young, black and says he supports Donald Trump.

If you haven’t heard about him, he’s 14-year-old CJ Pearson, a ninth-grader from Georgia who has criticized Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. Not surprisingly, he’s faced an onslaught of vitriol from Democrats and other leftists. But some conservatives, such as RedState’s Erick Erickson, see Pearson as a social media wannabe who should sit on the sidelines until he grows up.

In a column this week in Time, Pearson offered his view of the presidential race.

“I believe that the future of America is post-party politics. I hope that in 10 to 20 years, the near constant issue of partisanship will be a distant memory,” he wrote.

That sounds about right to me.

“As a young black male, I’ve seen my community flailing and struggling due to the disastrous impacts of the Obama political agenda, and I refuse to allow the possibility of a Clinton presidency to extend that suffering,” he added.

I can’t say I disagree with him there.

“Trump’s message to young people of color is simple: what do you have to lose?

“In my young optimistic eyes, after the last eight years of the Obama presidency, there is little left to lose. There is only room to do better, and there is only one goal: to make America great for every American.”


The entire column can be found at

Erickson criticized Pearson when he announced that he was leaving behind the failed campaigns of Rand Paul and Ted Cruz, where he served as head of “Teens for Ted,” and joining the ranks of Bernie Sanders’ supporters.

“[S]top embarrassing yourself, shut up, and go live life. Pay attention to politics, but also pay attention to movies, sports, girls, your parents, your preacher and your surroundings. Come back when you are eighteen, your voice has deepened, and you’ve passed your final growth spurt,” Erickson wrote last December. See the entire column at 

Erickson has a point that Pearson’s conservative bent may blow with the wind, but I see the underpinning of Trump and Sanders’ campaigns as quite similar. The two presidential candidates demonstrated the disdain Americans have for the political status quo.

What’s important to me about Pearson is that he asks a critical question about the lives of black Americans: Are they truly better off under Democrats?

Pearson realizes he and his fellow black Americans are not better off. I couldn’t agree more.

Christopher Harper, a longtime journalist with The Associated Press, Newsweek, ABC News and The Washington Times, teaches media law. Read more at

A note from DaTechGugy:
I hope you enjoyed Christopher Harper’s piece. This is the last week for DaMagnificent Prospects so if you like Chris check out & share his stuff. In case you missed his other pieces, here they are:

Budding reporters and politics
Give terrorists what they deserve: anonymity
The ‘BS’ factor
A Godless Olympics
A true American ally

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If there has been a worse afternoon for the Hillary Clinton Campaign I haven’t seen it.

First you have both have Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton both invited to Mexico by the president…

..and only Trump accepts making Trump look presidential and Hillary look like she’s ducking.

Then you have the Press gathered to see the joint statement after the meeting anticipating fireworks after Trump’s meeting with Mexico’s president with the MSM covering it live hoping for fireworks…

…and the Mexican president not only shows respect for Donald Trump, says he can work with Donald Trump but explicitly states and affirms the right of the US to control its border.  

But even so you have Donald Trump speaking next and the MSM was ready for him to put his foot in his mouth, insult his host in his own country in public or make some rowdy statement…

…and instead you get calm measured words that don’t back off one bit from his positions.  He looked presidential and diplomatic. totally destroying the carefully crafted media image the media has advanced.

Then you have the press conference if Trump didn’t make himself a fool during his statements the media asking him questions would manage to do so…

and Trump answers them cleaning and directly without a misstep.

It was in every way a disaster for the left.  Instead of a blithering bombastic racist idiot that they pretend Trump is, the American people saw live a diplomatic, determined and debonair leader with a history of making big deals with important people all over the world. And that doesn’t even take into account that Hillary hasn’t held a press conference since forever.

It caught the entire media by surprise.  So much so that the meme being advanced on every network was “Trump didn’t discuss Mexico paying for the wall.”  The fact  Mexico agreed to the right of securing the border or acknowledged the advantages to Mexico for securing said border wasn’t news only that Trump did not force this issue in his very first meeting with the Pres (an action that he would have been condemned for as being “undiplomatic if he had btw).

In short for the next several days the entire media will be dedicating themselves to making sure that they advance not the actual words said by Trump & the President of Mexico but their spin of it because the actual video is devastating to Hillary Clinton and her palace guard of Press.

If Donald Trump wins this election this is the day he does it.

I’ll share the last word with Jorge Ramos

Update: While the MSM will object Let’s go to the video

Update 2: Hmmm

Update 3: More commentary Roger Simon

Donald Trump’s perfomance at his dual statement cum brief press conference with Mexican President Enrique Nieto on Wednesday should put shivers in the Hillary Clinton camp even more than the new L.A. Times poll numbers showing a sudden bounce for Trump.

Trump was a hundred percent presidential in his performance, showing that he was not about to put his foot in his mouth on the global stage as easily as Hillary’s supporters are hoping. All this is occurring with her email/foundation metastasizing. This election is not over.

And he knows who to blame for this

Ever since Kellyanne Conway and Steve Bannon have joined the campaign, Trump has performed nearly flawlessly. This can’t be entirely accidental.

and Byron York who gets it completely

Many polls have shown that large numbers of voters do not believe Trump is qualified to be president. After the session, the Trump campaign was quick to tout the trip as evidence that he is ready for the Oval Office.

“Mr. Trump’s trip to Mexico is an impressive display of his ability to serve as our nation’s president on day one,” said deputy communications director Bryan Lanza in a statement. “This shows Mr. Trump’s commitment to strengthening our economy as well as our relationship with our neighbor, Mexico.”

Pena Nieto invited Clinton to visit, too. If she does, she will of course receive the kind of respectful, official treatment that she deserves. But Clinton, as a former secretary of state, has videos of zillions of photo ops showing her as a major player on the world stage. Trump had none. Until today.

As far as the MSM is concerned, this is bad very bad!

Update 4: The Wall Street Journal sees an angle I missed:

There is, quite simply, no good time for Mrs. Clinton to face the campaign press corps. Except now.

Had the long-awaited news conference been held Wednesday, the questions would be overwhelmingly negative…Yet this was her best opportunity–because any bad news would be largely overshadowed.

Why, because it would have been Trumped!

By scheduling a last-minute trip to Mexico City to meet with President Enrique Peña Nieto ahead of what his campaign is billing as a major immigration speech in Arizona, Mr. Trump has guaranteed the media focus will remain on him.

Advantage Trump again!

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You hadn’t exactly gone out of your way to call attention to them had you? I mean like actually telling anyone or anything.’ But the plans were on display…’ o n display? I eventually had to go down to the cellar to find them.’ `That’s the display department.’ `With a torch.’ `Ah, well the lights had probably gone.’ `So had the stairs.’ `But look you found the notice didn’t you?’ `Yes,’ said Arthur, `yes I did. It was on display in the bottom of a locked filing cabinet stuck in a disused lavatory with a sign on the door saying “Beware of The Leopard”.’

Douglas Adams The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy 1979 — Douglas Adams.

On Tuesday I led with a piece concerning the hilarity of crying “security” with Anthony Weiner and Huma when Bill Clinton is about to be let back into the white house. In that piece I had a quote from Donny Deutsch

Panelist Donny Deutsch guessed that Trump would have no problem counter-punching with the Epstein connection whenever he was hit for his own behavior with women, as he was last weekend in a piece in the New York Times.

“Here’s the tennis game,” Deutsch said. “Donald Trump kissed a woman in a bathing suit. Trump hits back: Tell me about the president’s relationship with a guy named Jeffrey Epstein. That’s your tennis match.”

In my original piece I had video from the Washington Free Beacon story containing that entire exchange. You might wonder why I didn’t include said video of Deutsch mentioning Jeffery Epstein and see the reaction of the people at the table.

Here is why

nbc copywright

If you look at the view count you will see that seven minute clip had over 100,000 views before NBC decided to play copyright police game.

Maybe it’s just me but given how often we see stuff at mediaite et al it seems rather unusual for a news network to make a copyright claim over a clip from a news story that used as “fair use” by another news organization. Could this suggest that NBC wants to keep this clip out of the public view because it might hurt Hillary?

I can see the NBC reaction now: Nonsense, we’re not censoring the clip at all. The seven minute clip IS available IF you

Go to the Morning Joe site

Hit search taking you to the MSNBC search engine

Search for Donald Trump

Narrow the field to Morning Joe

Narrow the field to May 16th 2016

and sit through all the videos till you find the right one.

And skip ahead to the 12 minute mark on that video.

If you do so you CAN find the clip and watch the Morning Joe panel’s reaction to what Donny Deutsch says

So,  You’ll have absolutely no problem sharing this clip with people far and wide and giving them a hint about the relationship between Jeffery Epstein and Bill Clinton and how the media views it…provided you are someone like me who

already saw the clip

remembered what show it was on

knew what day it was broadcast

And knew what time segment to look for 

As for everyone else NBC says to you: Beware of the Leopard!

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This election has been one of confusion.

We see the MSM spinning and editing Donald Trump for electoral purposes

We see polls showing results all across the spectrum

We see huge crowds at Trump events & diddly for Clinton yet we’re told she’s a shoe in

We see talking heads saying a lot of things but not actually reporting a lot of things.

I’ve reached the point where I have no idea what’s actually going on. I hate that and I suspect you do too.

Rather than just bitching about it I propose a solution.

DaTechGuy’s 20 (or 30) days of Trump


My proposal is that I follow the campaign for 20 (or 30) days.  Report at each stop , do my patented interviews with those who attend Trump events, get credentialed at pressers interview campaign people (& Mr. Trump himself if he is willing) and basically report first hand on what I see and what is going on rather than counting on the MSM or anyone else doing so.

I submit that I am an excellent choice for this because:

My biases are out there, I endorsed Ted Cruz Sept of 2015 and then Trump July of this year. I have been both willing to praise and critique Trump.

I have interviewed Trump fans all over you can directly see my work and how I approach it.

I have questioned Trump at press conferences and have covered such events live in the past so you’ve seen my work and what I do.

It’s been shown that I don’t edit my videos so you will see what is actually shot

And while many have disagreed with me over the years I’d like to think I have a rep of saying things as I see them and not being for sale to anyone except you the reader.


What it would involve:

I would be thinking of either a 20 day period from October 18th to November 6th  or a 30 day period from Sept 13 to Oct 12th  (I have a commitment to cook at a Knights of Columbus Charity dinner Oct 16th so I have to be home for that).

Basically I would travel by air, living out of my suitcase flying to the various cities where Trump is appearing, renting cars to head for and hit Trump events, Shooting videos and writing stories and then back to the airport for the next leg all the while finding time to eat, sleep and get laundry done in between so people are willing to approach me to be interviewed.

This would not be cheap.  I would not only have to spring for hotels, rented cars, meals, cleaning, gas and internet but I’d also have to replace my pay from my overnight job that I would have to get a leave of absence from.

It will also be tiring but I can’t see it being more tiring than working overnight 5 days a week.


What it will take:

There is no way I can even think of doing this unless I have the cash on hand in place to pay for it, particularly as I can’t guarantee that I’d have a job to come back to if I do this.

So I’m leaving it up to you dear readers.

If I can get $20,000 in pledges by Sept 7th and have them redeemed by Sept 10th I figure I can afford to do the 30 days of Trump coverage listed above, being able to pay expenses while still being covered if I have to risk my night job to do it.

If I can get $15,000 in pledges by October 10 and have them redeemed by October 15 I can do the shorter 20 days of Trump.

(If I raise the full $35 K I’ll do both adjusting the schedule slightly to allow myself to make it home for my son’s birthday)

Now I know this is not an insignificant amount of cash but it’s also going to be a significant amount of work and travel not to mention a lot of time spent away from my wife and family including my son’s birthday depending on which way this goes.  Furthermore you will know that you’ll be seeing things as they are from a person you presumably trust.

So here is how it will work, if you are willing to pledge an amount toward this project contact me by filling out this form  

Once I get the required pledges I’ll contact you for payment and then contact my employer to get a leave of absence (or give notice if necessary).

If I don’t get the required pledges or if people don’t come through with the dough in time to do this, then I’ll stay put and keep doing what I’m doing.

We often hear people say they want honest reporting on the campaign as opposed to what the MSM offers well if you’re willing to support me in doing it, I’m willing to provide you with it.

One of the great problems with the #nevertrump movement among conservatives is a basic fact of life noted in his post The 2016 conundrum for the Right: Truth-telling or cheerleading? by Ed Morrissey:

In the interests of telling the truth, I’ll disclose now that I plan to vote for Donald Trump. Perhaps I’ll write a separate post explaining how I made that decision, but the short version is that Hillary Clinton must be stopped and he’s the only way to make that happen.

That’s a much shorter version of my Donald Trump or Civil War I Choose Trump post detailing why Hillary Clinton must be stopped.

However thanks to various missteps, a united front by not only the MSM but the primary social media outlets such as Facebook and twitter who have, as expected in an election year dropped any pretense of being unbiased, and the efforts of the #NeverTrump Crowd the odds of us living under a Hillary Clinton presidency are increasing by the day.

And while the MSM and liberal owners of social media giants will rejoice I’ve been flummoxed by the lack of worry by #nevertrump over the consequences of a Hillary presidency, particularly since I see no reason why they should assume that they would be immune to any of the consequences that a newly empowered Hillary Clinton and “justice” department will vent on conservatives in general and Christians in particular.

At least I was until I saw yesterday’s headlines concerning the Clinton Foundation and Hillary’s time at State:

More than half the people outside the government who met with Hillary Clinton while she was secretary of state gave money — either personally or through companies or groups — to the Clinton Foundation. It’s an extraordinary proportion indicating her possible ethics challenges if elected president.

At least 85 of 154 people from private interests who met or had phone conversations scheduled with Clinton while she led the State Department donated to her family charity or pledged commitments to its international programs, according to a review of State Department calendars released so far to The Associated Press. Combined, the 85 donors contributed as much as $156 million. At least 40 donated more than $100,000 each, and 20 gave more than $1 million.

This being the case, the plan for conservatives in a Hillary administration is obvious.

Rather than spending money on think tanks, electing officials, grass roots organizing or educating the American people on the reasons why fiscal and social conservatism produces positive results for both society as a whole and for individuals in particular, conservatives can instead choose to take advantage of a fact noted by Reince Priebus on CNN:

Since it’s clear that Hillary Clinton can be bought all conservatives have to do is make sure we aren’t outbid.

Worried about taxes? $10 Million in the right hands will keep them low. Upset about gay marriage or the transgender stuff from the feds. Satisfaction is just $25 million away. Concerned about the Supreme Court? $100 million is the difference between Hillary appointing justice Warren or Justice Sessions. Want immigration laws enforced? $250 million will get it done and if you double it you might even get a wall.

And with the drop in oil prices making things difficult for the gulf states it might even be possible to outbid the Muslim Brotherhood’s supporters to make sure help actually gets sent in the next Benghazi situation, bid high enough and she might even denounce islamic terror.

I must commend the #nevertrump crowd for figuring this out before I did.

And to the Bernie Sanders supporters who sent those $10-$50 contributions have decided to Support Hillary Clinton over either Jill Stein, Gary Johnson or even Donald Trump.

You asked for it.

The Clock is ticking for Da Magnificent Prospects You can check out their work Monday evening, Tuesday at Noon, All Day Thursday and Saturday at noon. If you like what you see from them consider hitting DaTipjar in support of them (and please mention their name when you do) as both internet hits and tipjar hits will be part of scoring who stays & who goes.

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Winning a Presidential election normally requires a strong face of unity from the party and its voters. The all-important Independent vote is often swayed by the level of consolidated and consistent support from the Republican or Democratic bases. The candidate backed by the strongest unified front will be the one that gets more Independents as well as crossovers from the other party.

This year is different. For both candidates, the opposition is at unprecedented levels of strength and numbers; they’re the two least popular candidates in modern history. This presents a dangerous scenario for both parties because it allows for the “general election pivot” to be more pronounced. They don’t have to stick to their guns. They simply have to pander to as many undecided voters as possible. That means that they must eliminate hardcore stances that would normally preclude Independents from voting for them. For example, Hillary has barely discussed her disastrous $15 minimum wage proposal for months. Her voters know she’s doing it and she doesn’t need to highlight it now that she has the nomination.

For Trump, one precluding issue is illegal immigration. He is very aware that it’s the one issue for which he’s been considered far-right from the beginning. He’s also aware that a slight majority of Americans, including moderate Republicans, are in favor of some form of legalization or amnesty. This is why he’s cracking the door open ever so slightly on the possibility of softening his stance. It’s why he’s gone from “we’re going to build the wall and Mexico is going to pay for it” to being “almost 100%” on building it at all. It’s also why he’s insinuating to Hispanic leaders that there may be a better way than the “harsh” deportations he’s proposed in the past.

In reality, this isn’t the flip-flop that mainstream media is painting it to be. He’s said that he’s trying to “come up with something fair” but he hasn’t quite flipped or flopped. Until he offers a proposal that says he’ll look at legalization options for illegal immigrants or that he won’t deport millions of people who have broken our laws, we have to go with the idea that he’ll take a strong stance on the issue as President. However, we cannot give him a sliver of a doubt about our position on the issue. The question has been asked, “Should Trump supporters call him out?” The answer is absolutely yes.

In any other recent Presidential election, the unified voice of a candidate’s supporters should avoid saying anything harsh. They should support the candidate on issues they agree with and avoid the others. This year is the exception. If Trump is allowed to backtrack on his initial position, the position that earned him the instant support of millions of Americans and that has grown his base for over a year, then he will continue to crack the door open further. Once he does that, there’s no going back, even for Trump. It would be a huge mistake to open discussions on legalization or amnesty and then to go back to his initial promotion of a “deportation force.”

His campaign believes that he needs to pull in a larger percentage of Hispanic voters. They believe that the only way to do this is to soften on illegal immigration. That cannot be allowed to happen. It’s the responsibility of every Trump supporter to make it known through email, Twitter, or whatever method you choose that we want a wall, we want illegal immigrants deported, and we want the rule of law to be re-established in this country after eight years of lawlessness. This isn’t negotiable. There’s no room for softness on this issue because once a little weakness is shown, that sliver of a doubt will become a giant fissure that will result in no wall, limited deportations, and a continuation of lawlessness.

Instead of pivoting to the current populist view, he should stand by his marquee policy proposal and give everyone a reasoned argument about why it’s necessary. He should appeal to the Hispanic population, the majority of which are here legally, and demonstrate to them why illegal immigration hurts them directly. In this one issue, Trump has the truth squarely on his side. There’s no need to bend on it.

Now is the time for his supporters to let him know. currently, he hasn’t officially softened his position. It’s the perfect moment for him to come out and say unequivocally that he will do what he said he was going to do from the beginning. If we don’t let him know that we disapprove of a position shift, there will be plenty of people whispering in his ear that he needs to back it down a few notches.

If the Republican Party is to unify behind Trump, he cannot back off on his most conservative policy perspective. For many, it’s all we have left. He’s abandoned free trade. He’s promoted affirmative action. He’s suggested a $10 minimum wage. He’s offered to go after portions of the 1st Amendment. With all this, he’s remained conservative on immigration. Don’t let him take that away from us as well.

Image courtesy of Gage Skidmore.

A note from DaTechGuy: I hope you enjoyed JD Rucker’s piece. Remember we will be judging the entries in Da Magnificent tryouts by hits both to their post and to DaTipJar. So if you like Mr. Rucker’s work, please consider sharing this post, and if you hit DaTipjar because of it, don’t forget to mention Mr. Rucker’s post is the reason you did so. If you missed his previous pieces they are: The one word to associate with Hillary that would doom her camapign and Trump is Exactly Where He Wants to Be Despite GOP ‘Chaos’

Today starts the last two weeks of our 6 week tryouts for Da Magnificent Prospects You can check out their work Monday evening, Tuesday at Noon, All Day Thursday and Saturday at noon. If you like what you see from them consider hitting DaTipjar in support of them (and please mention their name when you do) as both internet hits and tipjar hits will be part of scoring who stays & who goes.

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Thorin Oakenshield:Do not speak to me as if I were some lowly dwarf… as if I were still Thorin Oakenshield. I AM YOUR KING!
Dwalin:You were always my king. You used to know that once. But you cannot see what you have become.

The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies (2014)

There have been many things about this election season that have been troubling, the MSM incredible bias (even worse than normal), the Hacking (which while to the GOP’s advantage and revealing many relevant facts still a bad precedent), the dirty deals in government to protect Hillary Clinton from the consequences of her actions (consequences that the government had no trouble bringing down on an enlisted sailor not named Clinton.)  The coarseness of the campaign and some of the horrible lies told about Ted Cruz (oddly enough for a “liar” the list of his “lies” seems oddly absent and the cheating of Bernie Sanders by the Democrats (Sanders would be as bad if not worse than Clinton but cheating him is still wrong).

But for my money the worst things I’ve seen is watching conservative activist, activists who have worked on key issue together for years at each other’s throats over Donald Trump.

Full disclosure, I’m a Ted Cruz guy, I’m still a Ted Cruz guy, I endorsed him last year and supported him through the entire primary process.  When the GOP establishment, when faced with the reality of a choice between Trump & Cruz, as predicted choose Trump in the hope of getting rid of the gadfly who had held them to their promise, I called them out on it and fought.  When there was still the slightest chance that Donald Trump might not get the needed delegates to clinch the nomination before the convention I stuck with Cruz and if he runs in 2020 I’ll still vote for him.

But in the end regardless of my opinion, the GOP voters, those folks that we conservatives claim to be carrying the banners for, decided they liked Donald Trump.  They gave him overwhelming wins in a crowded field and even when the field narrowed he won over and over again.  I talked to the Trump voters, interviewed them and in Trump they saw a can do attitude, a get things done attitude.  A person more interested in progress than political correctness and willing to say aloud truths that others ignored.

So as I did with Mitt Romney, I threw my support to Donald Trump and before the convention endorsed him.  It was not the most flattering endorsement but from that point I was with Trump and that was it, but even though I disagreed with those who thought otherwise, just as I did with those who stayed home vs voting Romney in 2012 or McCain in 2008, and consider the potential result disastrous for the country I presumed that they came to this decision in good faith, just as I assumed they believed that my decision to support the GOP nominee was reached in the same honorable way.

Alas it seems this attitude is the exception, not the norm.

For as much as both the online #nevertrump and #evertrump sides dislike Hillary Clinton and her media enablers their real hatred seems to be for each other.

For one side the the never trumpers are traitors, who are simply enabling the left, betraying the cause and are acting like sore losers unwilling to accept the will of the voters.

For the other side, the #ever trumpers are not only traitors who have abandoned conservatism by back a NY with a long liberal record but fools who are willing to overlook Trump record and faults and basically follow a demagogue for the sake of a GOP win.

Seeing both sides so willing to abandon allies that they fought beside for years over this I can’t help but think of the Hobbit, both the book and the movie Thorin Oakenshield’s obsession with the Arkenstone  and willingness to think the worst of family and friends:

Thorin Oakenshield:I have been blind… but now I begin to see. I am betrayed!
Bilbo Baggins: Betrayed?
Thorin Oakenshield: The Arkenstone.  One of them has taken it.  One of them is false.
Bilbo Baggins:Thorin… the quest is fulfilled. You’ve won the mountain. Is that not enough?
Thorin Oakenshield:Betrayed by my own kin…
Bilbo Baggins:N-no, uh. You made a promise to the people of Laketown. I-is this treasure truly worth more than your honor? Our honor, Thorin, I was also there. I gave my word.
Thorin Oakenshield:For that, I am grateful. It was nobly done.  But the treasure in this mountain does not belong to the people of Laketown.  This gold is ours. And ours alone. On my life, I will not part with a single coin. Not one piece of it.

This is the obsession that I perceive.  Both sides see the GOP as the Arkenstone, theirs by right.  The Never Trump by their years of conservative activism to advance their cause and struggle to put a conservative on the ballot, the Ever trump by their primary victory driven by voter turnout above and beyond the numbers of the past.  They see the other and usurpers and disrupters, their years of fighting side by side meaning nothing and like Thorin they are blind to an important fact.

Come November 9th no matter the result they are going to need each other, either to advance the conservative cause in a Trump administration or to stop a Hillary administration from destroying what Obama has not had the chance to (although no amount of unity will stop her from reshaping the courts and turning them into a place where conservatives are guilty by reason of their existence).

The failure to recognize this and to believe the worst of each other and act accordingly is unworthy of us. It’s a perfect manifestation of the sin of pride going before a fall, and unless this changes fast we are going to create a divide that can only aid our enemies both domestic and foreign in their attempt to make the decline of America irreversible.

I’ll give the last word to a different movie and character.  Benjamin Franklin from 1776

Dr. Benjamin Franklin: How DARE you jeopardize our cause, when we’ve come so far? These men, no matter how much we may disagree with them, are not ribbon clerks to be ordered about – they are proud, accomplished men, the cream of their colonies. And whether you like them or not, they and the people they represent will be part of this new nation that YOU hope to create. Now, either learn how to live with them, or pack up and go home!

The choice, dear conservative friends is ours, may we make the right one, for our sakes and that of our country.

Update: I’m with Glenn, A spouse willing to ditch you over a vote for Trump is no true spouse.

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Donald Trump delivered a rather compelling speech on Monday about terrorism and protecting our country from those who would do us harm. As usual, the media, who praised Trump during the primary as an iconoclast who refused to play by the traditional rules, are now casting him as a lunatic who refuses to play by the traditional rules. So, typically, they have ignored the substance of the speech, which is that Hillary Clinton and President Obama have objectively made our country less safe by their mishandling of international relations, especially in the Middle East, and tried to make Trump sound at the very least unhinged when he spoke about establishing criteria to decide who gets to immigrate here.
Here’s what he said:

We should only admit into this country those who share our values and respect our people. Those who do not believe in our Constitution, or who support bigotry and hatred, will not be admitted for immigration into the country. Only those who we expect to flourish in our country – and to embrace a tolerant American society – should be issued visas. (via politico)

In other words, the government’s purpose for “establish[ing] a uniform Rule of Naturalization” (the Constitution, Article I, Section 8) is to improve the safety, security and general welfare of its citizens. Let’s be clear: non-citizens do not have a right to become U.S. citizens, nor do they even have a right to enter our country unless we decide to let them.
As I mentioned in my first article, I am a Catholic and a Constitutionalist. I try my best to be a good Catholic and try to make sure that my Constitutionalist instincts fit within that framework. Fortunately, in the case of immigration, this is not that difficult. The Catholic position is described in the Catechism of the Catholic Church (clause 2241):

Political authorities, for the sake of the common good for which they are responsible, may make the exercise of the right to immigrate subject to various juridical conditions, especially with regard to the immigrants’ duties toward their country of adoption. Immigrants are obliged to respect with gratitude the material and spiritual heritage of the country that receives them, to obey its laws and to assist in carrying civic burdens.

Thus, according to the Church, the government has the right to establish conditions “for the sake of the common good” under which someone may immigrate. Of course, the immigrant also has the duty to “respect the heritage” of the U.S. when they come here. (One could argue that the reason we now have to press 1 for English is that immigrants since the passing of the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act have failed to live up to this obligation, but that’s a separate discussion.) In short, they should be coming here to become American. So what’s the problem with vetting people who want to come here from regions of the world where Islamic terrorism is rampant and excluding those found unacceptable?
Putting aside for the moment the practicality and logistics of such an effort, is there really a problem with establishing an immigration policy like what Trump described? It is certainly Constitutional, and it appears to be Catholic as well. There’s just one little wrinkle. The first part of the clause I quoted from the Catechism states:

The more prosperous nations are obliged, to the extent they are able, to welcome the foreigner in search of the security and the means of livelihood which he cannot find in his country of origin.

Thus, the Catholic position would be that a blanket ban on immigration from certain countries or regions would be unacceptable because we must allow the truly persecuted refugee to come to our shores out of compassion. So where do we draw the line? All I can say is that by calling for “extreme vetting” – which would allow for admitting the truly persecuted – and temporary holds, Trump appears to be closer to the Catholic position than Clinton who seems to be ignoring her Catholic responsibility of focusing on the common good of American citizens, by whom she is hoping to be elected.

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Ends, Means and Democrats
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A note from DaTechGuy: I hope you enjoyed Tech Knight’s piece. Remember we will be judging the entries in Da Magnificent tryouts by hits both to their post and to DaTipJar. So if you like Tech Knight’s work, please consider sharing this post, and if you hit DaTipjar because of it don’t forget to mention Tech Knight’s post as the reason you did so.

Normally i’d link to his previous pieces but he’s already taken care of that.

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NeoNeocon has made an excellent point:

if I were a liberal in tune with her policy positions, I would actually consider her quite trustworthy in terms of her politics, on which she is consistently liberal/leftist.

Liberals are ends and means people. The fact that Hillary is a lying person who has made her fortune off of the wealth of powerful people seeking favors, has been slipshod with American security and left Americans to die is completely irrelevant to them.

The problem for many with Trump, including many I spoke to at Redstate, is not only do people have trouble with some of his actions (the whole Cruz father/wife thing) but they aren’t sure of him on policy. Neo again:

I’ve decided I cannot trust a great deal of what he says. I cannot state strongly enough how little I trust him to keep his political word, or to have any fidelity to the issues he seems to be promoting at the moment. If he did become president, he certainly might turn out to be trustworthy on some of them, but I cannot tell ahead of time which ones they might be or whether there even are any such issues.

In other words as I’ve said, we don’t know his core values.

Now I’ve already endorsed Trump and have absolutely no doubt that it’s important to elect him vs Hillary. But this is a problem that needs to be address if Mr. Trump is going to win the votes of activists that has declined to support him.

That is the job of Steve Bannon to convince those folks that Trump means what he says, alternatively his job is to bring in enough non activists to compensate for this. Either way I wish him the best of luck on it.

Via instapundit.

It’s not always fun being a conservative in California. When election day comes around, I’m used to casting my symbolic vote knowing that none of my candidates for national races have a chance of winning. It was the opposite when I lived in Oklahoma. I couldn’t lose. Oh, what fun it would be to live in a swing state. Then again, I would probably be out knocking on doors and making phone calls rather than spending my time reaching an online audience.

There’s a solution that makes total sense, at least for the Presidential vote. Nebraska and Maine have adopted electoral college vote distribution systems that make for a much more interesting scenario. The way the system currently works in the rest of the states, only a handful can have an impact on the election. All of the others are considered safely in the pocket of one party or the other. Only in swing states do the people get the full attention of Presidential candidates. You won’t see Hillary Clinton spending too much time in Texas between now and election day.

In Nebraska and Maine, the winner of the statewide vote gets two electoral votes while the winner in each individual congressional district gets one. This would change the dynamic from having swing states to swing districts. Candidates would be forced to hit nearly every state. It wouldn’t be prudent to ignore entire blocks of the population as it is today.

The Constitution allows states to determine their method of distribution. This is as it should be and I am not an advocate for abolishing the electoral college in favor of using the popular vote. Madison and Hamilton were right in believing that the nation needed to be essentially protected from the potential tyranny of the majority by adopting the tenets of a republic over a pure democracy. If it ever comes down to it, we may have to call on people to change their electoral vote to prevent the wrong move by the majority.

What Nebraska and Maine do is allow for better distribution of attention by the candidates. A Republican would need to come to California for more than fundraising because he or she would have a chance of winning votes in Orange County and a few other congressional districts. President Obama won the only electoral vote from Nebraska cast for a Democrat in the last five decades by picking up the Omaha congressional district. By getting all of the states to adopt this measure, it would be necessary for candidates to spread their message and campaign spending to the whole nation rather than putting all of their focus on the handful of states that could swing in their direction.

Today, my vote for President is absolutely worthless while my friend’s vote in Ohio is crucial. That’s not the way that the founding fathers envisioned it. They never intended for 17% of the population to have all of the power in deciding a Presidential election. They simply wanted to protect against the potential pitfalls of a true democracy. That’s why they put it in the Constitution. That’s also why they left it up to the states to decide how to distribute those electoral college votes.

I won’t say that there are no pitfalls, but the positives clearly outweigh the negatives in my humble opinion. No vote should be worthless and no vote should be crucial. It’s impossible to make them all equal without switching to a democratic system, but a more sensible approach would change the dynamic for the better while staying within the original boundaries laid out in the Constitution.

Some may say that it’s impossible and they are probably right. Others might say that it would disproportionately favor Democrats. We tend to believe that when it comes to Congressional districts, but here’s the reality: if every state and DC had Nebraska’s and Maine’s system in 2012, the electoral college vote would have swung in favor of Mitt Romney. He would have had 274 electoral votes and we wouldn’t be discussing how bad Obama’s second term has been for the country.

A note from DaTechGuy: I hope you enjoyed JD Rucker’s piece. Remember we will be judging the entries in Da Magnificent tryouts by hits both to their post and to DaTipJar. So if you like Mr. Rucker’s work, please consider sharing this post, and if you hit DaTipjar because of it, don’t forget to mention Mr. Rucker’s post is the reason you did so. If you missed his previous pieces they are: The one word to associate with Hillary that would doom her camapign and Trump is Exactly Where He Wants to Be Despite GOP ‘Chaos’

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I suspect that those of us who find Trump & Hillary equally unacceptable are going to be voted off the conservative island before this election’s over. I’m being harangued by perfectly nice people saying “butbutbut HILLARY!!”, along with what’s supposed to be the clincher: “Supreme Court!” An awful prospect, to be sure. The thing is, I don’t see that Trump offers any more hope in that department. Neither candidate appears to have the constitutional moorings, never mind the pro-life moorings (since the right to life precedes any written constitution), to be sensibly guided in the choice of Justices.

That leaves the Senate as the firewall against any mischievous molding of the court that a President Clinton or President Trump might want to try.

To likeminded voters who won’t support either of the major Presidential nominees, I say go to the polls anyway. Don’t stay home in a snit on November 8. All those downballot races are going to affect how the next Chief Executive does business. And of all the downballot races, those for U.S. Senate are most critical.

Thirty-four Senate seats are up for grabs. It’s not enough for a candidate to point to the top of the ticket and say “I’m with him” or “I’m with her.” What I want to know is, are you for religious liberty? Do you recognize the right to life? How about respecting First Amendment free-speech rights for peaceful protesters with whom you disagree? Are you ready to defend and expand the Hyde Amendment?

No moot points there. The Little Sisters of the Poor are still waiting to hear if the Court will respect their religious beliefs regarding helping to procure contraception for their employees. The Hobby Lobby decision is still under fire, and so is McCullen – the former a religious liberty case,  the latter a victory for peaceful pro-life witnesses outside abortion facilities. The recent Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt decision has accommodated abortion providers while making substandard health care for women a constitutional right (and wasn’t that a neat trick?).

Democratic candidates for Senate seem to be consistent in praising Hellerstedt and condemning the other decisions, though I would be pleased to hear of an exception. Republicans are all over the place, to the extent that I can make no assumptions whatsoever about what an “R” means when it comes to judicial matters.

Does a candidate squirm or stand tall under questions about the Court decisions I’ve mentioned?  That’ll tell me a lot about whether I want a particular candidate in the Senate. If Trump gets elected with a bunch of Republican senators who are OK with Hellerstedt and not OK with the Little Sisters, or who are meek about either, Hillary will get the Court she seeks, even if she’s not President.

My own state is in play, with Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) being challenged by Democratic Governor Maggie Hassan. I’d much rather have Ayotte voting on judicial nominees. But will she campaign on the threat of a dangerous shift in the Supreme Court or a loss of the Hyde Amendment if Hassan gets the seat? Don’t I wish.

Frankly, in the year of Trump, Republican Senate candidates can’t trust either party’s standardbearer when it comes to the Court. It’s time to lead. Visualize a bloc of Senators telling the new President, Your nominees will have a history of respecting the right to life and the First Amendment, or they don’t stand a chance of confirmation. Better yet, visualize GOP Senate candidates saying that now, putting Dems on the defensive for once. Litmus test? You betcha.

Think about that if you’re tempted to stay home in November.

Ellen Kolb writes about the life issues at When she’s not writing, she’s hiking in New Hampshire. See her earlier posts for DaTechGuyBlog: Ethics and PP’s Campaign Cash, Putting a Know-Nothing in His Place, and Ads Say the Darnedest Things

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During the 4 pm hour on Sunday while as I scrambled to upload the last of my videos from Denver I turned on CNN in time to see Wisconsin State Senator Democrat Lena Taylor dismiss the looting and violence in Milwaukee saying “I don’t care about the buildings” She went on talking about the pain and hopelessness of those who committed the looting and rioting, talking about their lack of employment among other things.

Before we lament the fact that seeing an elected official running for re-election defend riots and violence is no longer a shock in America and forgetting for a moment that in living memory we had this thing called the “Great Depression” where unemployment pain and hopelessness abounded nationwide, yet still didn’t lead to the riots, looting and burning that have now become practically a norm for Democrat dominated cities in the Obama years, let’s play a thought game.

Even though the last time a republican was mayor of Milwaukee construction of the RMS Titanic had not yet started and the Cubs were world series champions let’s pretend, just for a moment, that State Senator Lena Taylor was not a black Democrat but a Republican of any color or race and ask: “How would the media react to those statements?”

Here’s what I think:

If Senator Lena Taylor was a republican then her statements defending the rioters would be the lead on every single networks. We would see panels of “experts” speak with astonishment deploring such a sentiment.

We would see newspapers print headlines in bold type and huge fonts screaming GOP defends rioters, and editorial pages from Boston to LA would talk about how the low the party has gone.

On panel shows we would see Paul Begala, Chris Cuomo, Donna Brazile David Axelrod talk about how Donald Trump needs to disavow Senator Lena Taylor. We would see Chuck Todd and George Stephanopoulos and John Dickerson challenge Donald Trump and his surrogates to do so repeatedly and press them repeatedly until those words came.

Furthermore it would not stop with Trump, we would see Harry Reid, Claire McCaskill and Nancy Pelosi demand that every Republican running for the US Senate or the House denounce Senator Taylor, reporters from CNN, NBC, MSNBC, ABC, the New York Times, the Boston Globe, the LA Times and the Washington Post would hound candidates from Kelly Ayotte to Marco Rubio to denounce the remarks of State Senator Taylor and until and unless they did promptly they would run story after story about their fecklessness in the face of a pol defending riots and lawlessness.

And when the presidential debates rolled along Hillary Clinton would challenge Donald Trump to once again denounce Senator Taylor on the stage and the unbiased moderators from the media would join in that demand, and no matter what his answer or actions the story on every major network would be how Donald Trump addressed GOP support for rioters and looters.

That would be the case if State Senator Lena Taylor was a republican and said what she said on CNN sunday afternoon.

But Lena Taylor is not a republican, so none of the networks will find her statements worthy of the front page. No new broadcast will lead with her words. If the subject of her words even came up in newspapers or on cable news panels of “experts” would decry the hopelessness of the black community and cite slavery (even though Wisconsin was admitted to the union in 1848 as a “free state”) and discrimination as the underlying causes of the riots.

No member of the media will link Senator Taylor’s remarks to Hillary Clinton, Begala, Cuomo, Brazile and Axelrod will not demand that Hillary Clinton disavow them and if a Trump surrogate or Trump himself demands it Chuck Todd and George Stephanopoulos will dismiss it as a ploy to divert attention from the polls..

If Paul Ryan or Mitch McConnell or Reince Priebus demand that every Democrat running for the US Senate or House candidate denounce Senator Taylor’s remarks, it will be at best dismissed as not having anything to do with elections in NH or Florida or Colorado or at worst be denounced instead as an attempt by the GOP to spread racial division.

And when the presidential debates roll along if Donald Trump brings up these remarks challenging Hillary Clinton to denounce them Hillary Clinton will play the race card and the moderators will scold Donald Trump for being divisive and the story on every major network will be about Donald Trump playing the “Willie Horton” card.

And that my friends is the difference between an unbiased media and one that consists of Democrats with bylines.

Closing Thought. If I was running the Donald Trump campaign I would have Mr. Trump mention Senator Taylor’s remarks in every speech in every state he’s in. I’d demand democrats across the board denounce them and ask loudly why the MSM is not doing so. And if challenged I would ask the same question that this post is titled: Imagine If Wisconsin State Senator Lena Taylor was a Republican. I’d make every Democrat and member of the media defend Senator Taylor’s remarks so every voter watching could see them do so.

But that’s me.

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John "Lee' Ruberry
John “Lee” Ruberry of the Magnificent Seven

By John Ruberry

I try not to cover the same subject in successive weeks in my weekly posts here, but these are not ordinary times. Media bias in regards to the presidential campaign is my topic, as it was last Sunday.

Fox News’ Howard Kurtz brought my attention to a New York Times article by Jim Rutenberg, a media columnist, who views a Donald Trump presidency as “potentially dangerous” and he essentially encourages reporters to “move closer than you’ve ever been to being oppositional.”

In other words, it’s okay for liberal journalists–an oxymoron–to work against the Republican nominee and support Hilary Clinton.

An oxymoron? A 2014 Indiana University poll found that just seven percent of journalists identify as Republican. My guess is that once you remove Fox News and Wall Street Journal reporters from the sample then that percentage would be quite close to zero percent.

Yes, Donald Trump and other Republicans are right. The media is biased. Yet, many voters, perhaps most, don’t understand, possibly because teachers and professors, themselves mostly comprised of leftists, tell students that journalists are simply collectors and conveyors of facts.

But the liberal guardians control that conveyor. Last week the Taliban-loving father of the Orlando terrorist who murdered 49 gay night club patrons sat directly behind Hillary Clinton as she spoke in that Florida city. Did the mainstream media cover that? Kinda sorta. But when white supremacist David Duke endorsed Trump’s candidacy in February, that incident received six times the coverage that the assassin’s dad story.

Last week’s Time cover showed a cartoonish image of Trump and his famous blonde hair pile with drips, with this headline, “Meltdown.” Sure, Trump–disclosure time, I voted for him in the Illinois Republican Primary and I will vote for in November–has engaged in many self-inflicted wounds.

But where is the Time cover story with Hillary Clinton with a Pinocchio nose? The Democratic nominee has repeatedly lied–wait, make that purposefully lied–about turning over emails from her private email server while serving as Obama’s secretary of state, about sending and receiving classified emails over that server, about Benghazi, and about ties to the so-called Clinton Foundation charity and the US State Department.

Donald Trump is right. The system is rigged. Clinton deserves to be under indictment. She isn’t because the Obama Justice Department is protecting her. And the corrupt media is shielding her by distracting the populace and preventing widespread rightful indignation.

The presidential race is being subverted by a media coup d’état.

Oh, if you are one of the increasingly fewer people who still subscribes to Time and the New York Times–and you are a conservative, I suggest that you kill the beast. Unsubscribe.

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.


This just in from The New York Times: Journalists are having trouble being objective about Donald Trump.


Here’s what the red, old lady had to say recently:

“If you view a Trump presidency as something that’s potentially dangerous, then your reporting is going to reflect that. You would move closer than you’ve ever been to being oppositional. That’s uncomfortable and uncharted territory for every mainstream, non-opinion journalist I’ve ever known, and by normal standards, untenable.”

The author, media columnist Jim Rutenberg, apparently isn’t much of a reporter or has ignored significant evidence of media bias when he served as the lead reporter on the 2012 campaign and a White House correspondent.

Note: I am not an ardent supporter of Trump. Also, I realize that the readers of DaTechGuy are not surprised by The New York Times’s arrogance and ignorance. But it is noteworthy that Rutenberg actually puts his analysis in writing at

NewYorkerNoted plagiarist Fareed Zakaria made no bones about his attitude about Trump. He simply called the GOP presidential candidate a “bull****” artist on CNN and in The Washington Post.

In the neck-snapping underpinning for his “astute” analysis, Zakaria quoted a Princeton University professor who actually wrote an academic paper entitled, “On Bull****.”

In case you need a definition, a BS-er, “is neither on the side of the true nor on the side of the false. His eye is not on the facts at all . . . except insofar as they may be pertinent to his interest in getting away with what he says.”

It seems to me that the definition applies to Zakaria and many of his fellow travelers in the media.

Christopher Harper, a longtime journalist with The Associated Press, Newsweek, ABC News and The Washington Times, teaches media law. Read more at

A note from DaTechGugy: I hope you enjoyed Christopher Harper’s piece. Remember we will be judging the entries in Da Magnificent tryouts by hits both to their post and to DaTipJar. So if you like Christopher Harper’s work, please consider sharing this post, and if you hit DaTipjar because of it, don’t forget to mention Chris’ post is the reason you did so. In case you missed it, his first piece was Budding reporters and politics. His second was Give terrorists what they deserve: anonymity.

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You’ve heard about the media in general and twitter in particularly giveing Hillary Clinton “media privilege” well I think this visual of this tweet says it all

twitter clinton guard

I spotted this on instapundit and noticed the warning about sensitive material. Such a label of course automatically implies that what is beyond it is so terrible, so horrible, so beyond the pale that one risks crossing the bounds of propriety if one see it and it goes without saying such an image shouldn’t be shown to kids.

But we are an adult blog here so brace yourselves here is the actual image that is SO sensitive that twitter wanted it censored click MORE if you dare….

Continue reading “How Twitter Uses “Media Privilege” to Play Palace Guard for Hillary in One Image”

If the 2016 Presidential election has taught us anything, it’s that conventional wisdom no longer has a place in the thought process of anyone trying to figure out Donald Trump’s path to the White House. Conventional wisdom said that he shouldn’t have made it into the primaries at all. It says he definitely shouldn’t have won the nomination. It says that he’s imploding before our eyes and taking the Republican party with him.

There is nothing conventional about Trump, but there may be some wisdom in his actions, at least from the perspective of winning the Presidency. Let’s look at the most recent things that Trump is doing so we can understand why at this point he’s probably going to win.

  • Attacking Khizr Khan: Trump is attacking the family of an American soldier who gave his life fighting for his country. This would be political suicide in any other circumstance and with any other candidate, but with Trump, it’s the smart move. He has three months to make the negatives go away, but in the meantime he’s putting the focus on radical Islamic terrorism. More importantly, he’s demonstrating again that political correctness is not something that guides him. Both of these things will keep his base juiced up while leaving him enough time to repair any damage he’s done with members of the military.
  • Promoting Paul Ryan’s Primary Opponent: One thing you never do as a candidate is to go after the most powerful Republican politician in the country if you want to win the Presidency. That’s the conventional wisdom. The Trump wisdom is that Ryan has proven to be an easy person for conservatives to attack. If Trump is going to win, he’ll need conservatives to either accept him as the non-Hillary or embrace him as someone who will fight the Establishment. Whether Ryan wins or loses his primary is irrelevant to Trump. The fact that he’s going after him now and not bowing down to party etiquette will endear him to Republicans who don’t like Ryan as well as Democrats and Independence who want someone not beholden to decorum within the party itself.
  • Embracing Vladimir Putin: Like it or not, Vladimir Putin is respected by millions of Americans. Trump’s bear hug is getting him some heat in the press and among party leaders, but it’s signalling to voters that he’s willing to work with the country that could very easily become our biggest enemy once again. He’s offering hope to the idea that his penchant for deal-making is going to keep America safe from anyone who wants to do us harm. As the election season hits its climax, most negatives associated with Trump’s willingness to endear himself to Putin will be erased.

If Trump had done any of these things (or any of those faux pas he made in the past) in mid- to late-October when many undecided voters were making up their minds, it would be bad for him. Instead, these are all things that he has time to fix while still gaining the benefits they give him to certain parts of the electorate. It’s like he’s hitting rock bottom now so he can vault himself to the top when the time is right.

It should be noted that I am not a Trump supporter, nor am I a Hillary supporter. I’ve accepted that there will not be a conservative in the White House in 2017 which is why we’re in the process of forming a third party to help pick up the pieces after this election. This is why these perspectives should be taken seriously. I’m not promoting Trump. I’m declaring that against all of the things the press is saying, he’s very likely going to win this election.

A note from DaTechGuy: I hope you enjoyed JD Rucker’s piece. Remember we will be judging the entries in Da Magnificent tryouts by hits both to their post and to DaTipJar. So if you like Mr. Rucker’s work, please consider sharing this post, and if you hit DaTipjar because of it, don’t forget to mention Mr. Rucker’s post is the reason you did so. If you missed his piece last week it’s here.

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The real question is…why don’t the numbers add to 100%?

Turkey’s response to the recent coup attempt has been particularly brutal.  Over 200 are dead and 45,000 in jail, and many will likely be executed and buried in traitor cemeteries.  A YouGov poll indicated that a surprising number of people would see themselves supporting a military coup in the United States, due to more trust in military officers than government officials.  With a large professional military and similar government setup, Turkey isn’t unlike the United States.

But a coup is unlikely.  Sorry YouGov pollers.

First, our military doesn’t have the strong sense of personal loyalty to its admirals and generals.  After World War Two, we separated military branches and eventually split our forces into Combatant Commands, which meant the President had multiple four-star generals and admirals reporting to him.  Fragmenting the military means it is unlikely that any particular general will have sway over a majority of forces.

Unified_Combatant_Commands_mapMy Turkish Naval Officer friends don’t understand this setup. Frankly, neither do I.

Plus, our elected officials in Congress keep our officer corps apolitical, first by banning military members from running for office or actively campaigning.  Congress also owns the overwhelming number of nominations to service academies, which ensures that the President cannot build an officer corps loyal only to him.

Most importantly, we lack a domestic distraction.  Turkey can easily blame problems on the Kurds, which you will see more of post-coup attempt.  We don’t have a version of Kurdistan in the United States (although the southern border may feel like that at times).

No matter who wins in November, don’t expect a coup.

The views expressed in this blog post are those of the author and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Navy, Department of Defense, or U.S. Government.

NG36B is a military blogger. If you liked this post, and you like Star Wars, you should check out why Darth Vader is an Operational Genius.

UPDATE DTG: amusing Irony via Instapundit:

When asked whom they would vote for during the 2016 campaign, 78% of servicemembers picked “other.” Nearly all then chose “military coup” from a list of options that also included Joe Biden, Ted Cruz, Jill Stein and “a massive earthquake that wipes out life in North America.”

Yeah parody is fun.

A note from DaTechGugy: I hope you enjoyed RH/NG36B’s piece. Remember we will be judging the entries in Da Magnificent tryouts by hits both to their post and to DaTipJar. So if you like his work, please consider sharing this post, and if you hit DaTipjar because of it don’t forget to mention RH/NG36B’s post as the reason you did so. His piece from last week, in case you missed it is here.

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