Contrary to popular belief, liberal mainstream media bias is not the same ol’ narrative that conservatives have had to fight since the 1970s. Starting with the Bush administration and as a direct result of the rise of the internet, liberal journalists have dramatically increased their blatant favoritism towards progressive agendas. They don’t even try to hide it anymore.

We see a lot of publications like Newsbusters reporting on the bias. This is a good thing, but it’s not enough. As conservative citizens, bloggers, and social media users, we have to do more than point out the bias because most people are already aware that it exists. Sure, there are still pockets of hardcore progressives who claim the media is biased against them rather than the other way around, but we won’t be able to reach those people. Our focus should be on the masses who accept that media bias exists but who still allow themselves to be indoctrinated by it.

This is where fighting “smarter” comes into play. Most have seen examples of or even participated in the insult wars against people who share biased news. I’ve done it many times in the past, often referring to the “sheep” who hang on every declaration on The View or who share Paul Krugman links every time he writes a condemnation of conservative principles. We have to stop. The ball is in our court. We have the opportunity to start real political discourse. It won’t be easy. The passions on the left are heavy and have been stung repeatedly since November. We need patience and intelligence. We need to take the high road.

That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be aggressive with our strategies. One of the easiest arguments to make is calling out hypocrisy. It’s hard to deny when presented the right way, particularly in the current situation. It’s hypocritical of everyone on the left who fought for a smooth transition of power and acceptance of election results until it was their side calling the election results into question. You can’t tell us we need to accept the results if Hillary Clinton won, then decline to accept the results because she lost. This is just one example of the hypocrisy.

As I’ve noted in the past, both the media and liberal politicians are going to go after Trump’s biggest weakness: his thin skin. They know that he’ll respond to attacks, so that’s exactly what they’re going to do. However, it’s in the way they’re going to spin it that the damage can be done. They will attack, then wait for the counter-attack and report mostly on the latter. Today, we see it in the “feud” between Trump and Congressman John Lewis. The Congressman drew first blood by calling the legitimacy of Trump’s Presidency into question, for which he was rewarded by the press as being brave and righteous. When Trump attacked back, the media unleashed the hounds to highlight Trump as being racist (Lewis is black), misinformed (Trump called out Lewis as all talk, no action, despite his very real actions during the civil rights movement), and a bully (okay, that one’s accurate).

Trump Tweeted insults at a man who attacked him. How is that bigger news than a respected American politician calling into question the legitimacy of a Presidency based upon an intelligence briefing that admits the actual effects of Russia’s attempts are unclear? Are we supposed to unify behind Barack Obama but revolt against Trump? That’s essentially what Lewis is calling for, but you’d never know that based upon media coverage.

As noted on TNA, conservatives must go on the offensive against the bias:

What’s the right answer to the media bias problem? Fight back. Spread real news. Correct those who fall for the bias. Scorn those who report with bias. A free press is there to keep Americans informed, not indoctrinated. It’s time to make the media realize their agenda is not our agenda.What’s the right answer to the media bias problem? Fight back. Spread real news. Correct those who fall for the bias. Scorn those who report with bias. A free press is there to keep Americans informed, not indoctrinated. It’s time to make the media realize their agenda is not our agenda.

This is why we must fight harder. Despite the election results, we are losing this battle. The left is regrouping. The attacks from the media are incessant and increasing in ferocity. It’s up to conservatives to not only highlight when the media reveals their leftist agenda, but to also offer alternatives to those narratives. We have the truth on our side. It’s time for us to make others see it for what it is.

Today, the DoJ entered the fray to put an asterisk next to Donald Trump’s Presidency. They announced that they’re investigating the FBI for their pre-election actions. As you may recall, FBI Director James Comey was the first scapegoat offered up by the Democrats about why they lost so badly.

According to The Blaze:

The inspector general’s office at the Department of Justice announced Thursday that it will investigate the FBI’s probe into Hillary Clinton’s emails during her time as secretary of state, as well as FBI Director James Comey’s decision to send a letter to Congress stating that the bureau was reopening its case involving the Democratic nominee for president just days before the Nov. 8 election.The inspector general’s office at the Department of Justice announced Thursday that it will investigate the FBI’s probe into Hillary Clinton’s emails during her time as secretary of state, as well as FBI Director James Comey’s decision to send a letter to Congress stating that the bureau was reopening its case involving the Democratic nominee for president just days before the Nov. 8 election.

It’s been over two months since their devastating losses and we’re still seeing liberal publications scratching their collective heads. They simply cannot comprehend that Americans could say no to their agenda that they believe has worked out so wonderfully the last eight years. As a result, they’re doing everything in their power to make it appear as if they were robbed rather than accepting that their message simply isn’t resonating.

They’re looking for as many bogeymen as they can find to attach to Trump’s Presidency. They want this to be an unmitigated disaster from day one, so they’re employing jamming and propaganda techniques to force that perspective onto the American public. This, more than anything else, is why BuzzFeed did what they did.  They intend to beat all of Trump’s horses, living or dead, until a majority of Americans believe that they’ve made a terrible mistake.

DC politicians are working behind the scenes to do the same thing. There are questions that the DoJ rightly needs answered by the FBI, but those questions can be done privately and without a full blown investigation. The reason they’re taking it as far as they are is simply a well-timed statement to the public. In essence, they’re saying, “In the midst of this Russian problem, don’t forget that Trump had help on the inside as well.”

Their plan would actually be quite entertaining if it were put into a fictional realm. Imagine the story line (read in a deep movie-trailer-guy voice): “They thought they had the perfect plan to rule the most powerful nation on the planet, but they got trumped. Now, the Democrats have a plan to wreak havoc on the political system and teach the people once and for all that the left is right. No one is safe. No action is too disgraceful. In 2017, they’re out for blood and they’ve got nothing left to lose.”

The Democrats aren’t trying to gain more power or affect public policy. They want one thing: retribution. Their actions are designed to make as many Americans as possible regret their choices in 2016. This year is going to be about making us feel bad so they can feel better about themselves.

If Hillary Clinton opened up a hamburger joint, would you eat there? If George Soros wrote a book and went on tour, would you buy his book and wait in line at Barnes & Noble to have him sign it? Did you run out and buy a Dixie Chicks album after they attacked George W. Bush?

Why, then, do conservatives continue to support Hollywood when the vast majority of people in it are pushing a left-wing agenda? Many of them spend more times promoting their political narrative than making movies and television shows. Most of them allow those narratives and agendas to leak through in their performances and movie choices.

As I write this, the Golden Globes are being watched by millions of Americans. A good chunk of those watching are conservatives. This isn’t intended to condemn any of you; I had aspirations to be part of the Hollywood world at one point in my life and even moved to southern California to pursue it. Over the last decade, I watched as the liberal underpinnings of Hollywood emerged into blatant attacks on many of the things that I believe. Recently, the progressive rhetoric has reached a crescendo to the point that they don’t even try to pretend they’re only entertainers. They’ve come out feverishly opposed to the philosophies that make America awesome and in favor of the socialist, lawless, liberal ideology that is leading us towards oblivion.

There are few institutions that are easier to generalize than Hollywood. Save for a handful of brave and outspoken conservatives, the vast majority of actors, directors, and producers are as left-wing as they come. Last year brought more of them out of the political closet as the fear of Donald Trump prompted policy commentary from the strangest places. Today, they are outspoken and angry.

Most of Hollywood is pro-choice. They support the ideas of giving greater rights to members of the LGBTQ community than to average Americans. They want open borders as long as the illegal immigrants aren’t in their neighborhoods. They want total gun control except for their bodyguards. They oppose school choice while their children go to private schools.

They support Obama, oppose Trump, and they’re going to do everything they can to subvert his presidency.

As conservatives, we should not support them. We shouldn’t buy tickets to their movies. We shouldn’t bump up the ratings on their television shows. We shouldn’t be fawning over them at awards shows or idolizing them in any way. Like it or not, they have power through influence of their huge audiences. Some of them reach millions of people every day with their ideologies.

It’s hypocritical for us to condemn their politics but support their careers. Every time we buy a ticket to movies written, directed, and performed by liberal activists, we’re giving them money that will be used to promote their agenda. How many of them gave to Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders, and other liberal politicians? Which ones held fundraisers to promote the progressive agenda? We empower them to attack our philosophies.

We need to make better entertainment choices. As much as I’d love to call for a boycott, it’s unrealistic. As conservatives, we can choose to watch movies by those who aren’t fighting us. They don’t even have to be outspoken conservatives as long as they’re not militant liberals. There’s a reason that Mark Wahlberg seems to be in every patriotic retelling of real events from Lone Survivor to Patriots Day. Clint Eastwood directs a movie every year or two. Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson could be the next Ronald Reagan. Chris Pratt and Denzel Washington might not speak too much about politics, but they’re open about their faith.

We have choices. We don’t have to kiss the ring of the Hollywood elites or risk boring ourselves with Fox News all night. If we spend our entertainment dollars supporting people and stories that align more closely with conservative philosophies, Hollywood will eventually take the hint. Even if they don’t, at least we can feel better knowing we’re not supporting the engines of our own demise.

Hate is a real issue. Americans have plenty of it. They demonstrate it all the time. The difference between hate today and hate in the recent past is that it’s now manifesting in the form of hoaxes perpetrated mostly by the left. They don’t want to be seen as hateful, so they turn their own hate into “clever” ruses to paint the right as the “real “haters.

Fake news is a real issue. As an obsessive consumer of political media, I’m a fake news hipster. I’ve been calling it out since before it was cool.

Today, we’re seeing the two collide in spectacular fashion. They’ve always had a secondary relationship in that hoaxes would be perpetrated and the media would investigate and report if necessary, but the boundary that separated them has collapsed. Today, the media’s standard operating procedure is to report the hoax first, investigate (or maybe not) later.

Why did this happen? Did the media become suddenly more gullible? No. This is willful. Ever since about a month and a half before the election, mainstream media started their “ready, fire, aim” stance on hate hoaxes because they realized they needed it to propagate their narrative agenda. They’ve learned two important things: falling for a hoax will not decrease ratings/readership, and they can source each other rather than investigate in order to justify their choices.

Here are four major hate hoaxes that have been reported in the last 24 hours:

In all four cases, there were reasons for the media to doubt the stories. In all four cases, the narrative of white and/or conservative and/or Trump-supporting and/or bigoted “people of privilege” persecuted and/or harassed and/or discriminated against some variation of minority. In all four cases, the hoax was reported before confirmed and later it was revealed by law enforcement or conservative media that we had all been duped.

Here’s the core of the problem. Mainstream media has a narrative agenda that has failed miserably. They did everything they could to hand the White House and Senate to the Democrats. In the past, that’s all that needed to happen; if the media united behind a cause, they could bend the will of the people. In the case of the 2016 election, their agenda backfired, so they now have two choices. They could learn their lessons and return to a bygone day when reporters actually reported and commentators made absolutely certain their perspectives would not be confused with news.

Predictably, mainstream media has chosen option two. They’re doubling down. The lesson they think they learned from their mistake is that they can’t allow a sliver of doubt to creep in. They actually think they were too easy on Donald Trump. They think they didn’t push enough of their narrative on Senate races. They think they now need to promote their agenda in full force, working overtime if necessary.

They’re going to get away with it, too, if we let them. Nobody calls out the original source. All it takes is for one media outlet to report something as real and the rest will jump on the bandwagon rather than investigate if for themselves. It’s not that they believe it to be true. It’s that they hope for it to be true. That’s enough. They’ve lost their way.

As conservatives, we need to take two stances. We need to call out the media when hate is faked and we need to call out the real haters. We’re not innocent in this. Many conservatives will turn a blind eye or even mount a feeble defense when real bigotry or hatred is present. To stay consistent, we have to stick with the truth regardless of whose side is to blame. The only way we can defeat the liberal media narrative agenda is if we take the high road every time.

Americans supporting candidates other than Donald Trump had 17 months to make the case to America why he shouldn’t be the next President of the United States. Based upon the rules set forth in the Constitution and subsequent election laws passed over the last 220 years that every candidate agreed to when they initiated their campaigns, Trump won the election. This matter is settled with one viable exception.

Before we get to that exception, let’s discuss the things that are not exceptions to the rules. They are relevant because they’re currently being used by the left in an attempted to sabotage Trump’s victory. As a proud member of the new Federalist Party, it disgusts me that so many Democrats are attempting to invoke the safeguards set forth by our founders to subvert the powers of the electoral college and prevent Trump’s ascension to office.

Fear of ridicule, harassment, persecution, or physical harm are not valid exceptions for electors to change their votes. It’s a sad state of affairs that we have to point this one out, but that’s the tactic that many Democrats are using today. Attempting to bully electors isn’t just immoral. It’s against the law, but it’s worse than that. It’s an action that eats away at the foundation of this nation.

Admiration of Hollywood celebrities and their “enlightened” perspectives is not a valid exception for electors to change their votes. The ridiculous video many of them put out in a plea for electors to change their votes is allowable and almost admirable… if you forget that it’s a ridiculous video. While I’m skeptical about its actual core intention, if we take it at face value, it’s still pretty silly. Again, the attempt would be admirable in a way because it’s a protected expression of an opinion, but in this case their opinion is futile. Even if their message succeeded, it wouldn’t change the result of the election.

Lastly, mass media anti-Constitution propaganda pushed from the highest office in the land and spread through the Democrats’ mainstream media minions is not a valid exception for electors to change their votes. We are a constitutional republic with an electoral college safeguard in place to make sure the worst-case scenario doesn’t happen. Trump may be the worst-case scenario in the minds of many Democrats just as President Obama was the worst-case scenario in the minds of many Republicans, but neither represented a true existential threat to America. Obama did damage, but we can recover. Trump will do some good and some bad, but it’s unlikely that he will single-handedly propel us into the abyss.

That brings us to the viable exception. Of the pieces of the Constitution that were debated by both sides, the electoral college was the most agreeable. It was called “excellent if not perfect” for one important reason. Their fear in the 18th century is possibly a relevant fear today. They believed that the electors could have the discernment necessary to make certain the next President wasn’t planted by a foreign power.

In The Federalist #68, Alexander Hamilton wrote:

Nothing was more to be desired than that every practicable obstacle should be opposed to cabal, intrigue, and corruption. These most deadly adversaries of republican government might naturally have been expected to make their approaches from more than one querter, but chiefly from the desire in foreign powers to gain an improper ascendant in our councils. How could they better gratify this, than by raising a creature of their own to the chief magistracy of the Union? But the convention have guarded against all danger of this sort, with the most provident and judicious attention. They have not made the appointment of the President to depend on any preexisting bodies of men, who might be tampered with beforehand to prostitute their votes; but they have referred it in the first instance to an immediate act of the people of America, to be exerted in the choice of persons for the temporary and sole purpose of making the appointment. And they have excluded from eligibility to this trust, all those who from situation might be suspected of too great devotion to the President in office. No senator, representative, or other person holding a place of trust or profit under the United States, can be of the numbers of the electors. Thus without corrupting the body of the people, the immediate agents in the election will at least enter upon the task free from any sinister bias.

In short, the founders didn’t simply want to prevent a bad choice for President. They wanted to prevent corruption in any form but specifically corruption by foreign powers. While some might make the case that Trump has too many connections to Russia, it’s hard to imagine that he’s an actual foreign conspirator planted in office to bring down the country. I could easily make a case that Hillary Clinton was even more likely to be influenced by foreign powers had she been elected, but she thankfully was not. With that said, I have called on conservative media to help sort this whole Russia business out.

If electors truly believe that Trump is a Russian plant who will intentionally bring down the nation on orders from Vladimir Putin, they should exercise their rights as electors to prevent it. If they believe the more likely scenario that he’s a patriotic American who wants to forge a good relationship with Russia, then that’s simply not viable grounds to change their vote. For the sake of as smooth of a transition of power as possible, the electors should vote for whoever their state’s voters selected as President. The final tally should be 306 to Trump, 232 to Clinton.

Update: As if on cue, leftist-operated Facebook is turning to liberal “fact checkers” in their quest to quash the scourge of free speech fake news. As you read the article, keep this in mind because the drumbeat is getting louder every day. Folks, if conservatives don’t get louder, we’re going to get drowned out. Never underestimate the ability of leftist propaganda to turn good people to the left.

Liberal media is running with so many narratives right now that it’s getting hard to keep up. Russia rigged the election. Obama is leaving the economy in pristine condition. James Comey rigged the election. Snowflakes are being triggered by anything associated with Trump. Fake news rigged the election. Trump is going to take us to war against China, Iran, Mexico, North Korea, and everyone else (other than Russia). The electoral college needs to unrig the election.

Just when we thought that the floodgates of leftist propaganda was fully open during election season, the media has somehow opened them up even further. The sad reality is that if we, the conservative media and activists, don’t do something to stop it, their plan is going to work. We’re going to experience a liberal revival based on sheer brainwashing that hasn’t been seen since the Reagan era.

Things are actually much worse than they were in the 80s because now we have the internet and social media. Both venues are dominated by leftist ideology; for every conservative blog or news outlet out there, the left has a dozen to counter them. They have the advantage on social media sites, not because there aren’t enough conservatives using them but because their “algorithms” favor liberal perspectives.

The original reason I started my conservative news aggregator is the same reason I love writing for DaTechGuy. Conservatism needs more voices and it needs those voices to be louder in order to break through the false narratives perpetuated by the left. We are fighting a two-front war. On one hand, we have the known enemies on the left with liberal politicians, media, and individuals spreading their agenda. On the other hand, we have RINOs in office who are pushing the GOP to adopt more “moderate” policies, most of which would be considered outright liberal just a few years ago.

The modern conservative movement is in danger. While most of you are likely immune to the swarm of narratives the left is pushing right now, we have to acknowledge that most Americans are not. Just because they don’t trust the media doesn’t mean that the media doesn’t affect their worldview. We are all being bombarded with stories on television and the internet that tell us everything is going to fall apart with the GOP in control of the government. This “chaos strategy” works. As a strange man once pointed out, if you tell lies often enough, they become the truth.

We cannot be lazy. We cannot become complacent. We definitely cannot spend another moment basking in our election victories because the left is already hard at work trying to reverse them. They want to see big gains in 2018. They want to see bigger gains in 2020. To accomplish this, they will paint America as a nasty place that’s falling apart because of the Republicans. More importantly, they’ll blame conservative philosophies for every bad incident, herding as many Americans as possible into embracing their liberal ideology.

I have to do my part to stop this. YOU have to do your part as well. No, I’m not talking to everyone who’s reading this. Some people simply don’t have the time to invest into a political project and are lucky to have the time to even read the occasional article. There’s no fault assigned to those who are unable to help. On the other hand, those of you who have a voice need to make it louder. Those of you who can build a voice should start doing so now.

It doesn’t require starting a blog or a YouTube channel, though that would be nice. It can be done through word of mouth, social media, letters to the editors of local publications, or comments left in any of these venues. We need to call out the left’s lies. We need to highlight the right’s goals and perspectives.

Today is the day that conservatives need to realize the war is not over. We may have won some elections, but we’re still the underdogs. The left has more resources and advantages. We need to fight their propaganda even more tenaciously than we fought during the election. Otherwise, the gains that were made in 2016 can be easily wiped away in 2018 and 2020.

Over the last few years, we’ve seen a dramatic shift in the way the abortion debate has been framed by the left through their mainstream media proxies. What was once a battle about “choice” has now been retooled to be about “reproductive rights.” This is going to become louder once Ohio Governor John Kasich decides which abortion ban he signs, which will likely happen this week.

Personally, I’d like to see him sign the Heartbeat Bill, but as long as he signs one of them, the conversation will reignite around the concept of reproductive rights. This is usually frowned upon by conservatives as it touches on a point that we hold dear: personal liberties. We don’t like that the left is using one of our tools against us. Rather than attempting to shift the conversation away from this talking point, we should embrace it.

It has become the most powerful weapon used by the pro-abortion crowd because the conservative perspectives surrounding personal liberties resonate with the majority, even Democrats (once you clear away the minutia they use to cloud the issue of freedoms). They are pulling at our political heartstrings when they make the claim that any attempts to take away a woman’s right to an abortion is an attack on her freedoms. For this reason, the pro-life movement has turned to other methods for fighting their battles: religion, post-abortion depression, touching stories from abortion survivors, and scientific technicalities are just some of the tools pro-lifers use to wage war on abortion.

We’ve allowed the left to co-opt our most powerful weapon and use it against us. This needs to be reversed. Abortion is absolutely about personal liberties. There is no better argument than protection of freedoms and our God-given rights when combating the plague of abortion. All we need to do is focus on the other side of the coin. Just as pro-abortion groups tout the individual liberties of pregnant women by focusing on reproductive rights, pro-lifers should engage in the same way by hammering the rights of the preborn.

Yes, babies have rights, too. The question of when the baby gets rights is the only thing in question. The left will tell us that up to a certain point, a preborn baby is simply a conglomeration of cells that are actually still part of the woman, so their existence falls under the jurisdiction of her individual rights. Just as she can choose to have her tonsils removed, the left wants us to believe she has the right to have the unwanted grouping of cells in her uterus removed.

Science is on our side. The reason the Heartbeat Bill has its name is not symbolic. The bill bans abortions once a heartbeat can be detected by the doctor. This happens around the six-week point following conception. It may be hard to convince people on the fence that the standard ban on abortions held by most states of 24-weeks needs to be brought up to the six-week mark, but knowing that the preborn baby’s heart is already beating at that point is a powerful argument for life.

When does a preborn baby acquire the rights of every American to be allowed to live? For some of us, the answer is at conception. For others, it’s at a certain point between conception and birth. The key for this battle is to understand that if Americans are made aware of the science behind reproduction, the left’s narrative of “reproductive rights” can be quickly shifted in the hearts and minds of millions of Americans to be about a preborn baby’s right to live.

The left is fighting a losing battle if we take the battle to them instead of tiptoeing around the other strategies that we’ve created. Modern science allows us to get up close and personal with preborn babies. Share those videos. Share the stories of how preborn babies feel pain, dream dreams, and experience emotions in ways very similar to how they act once they’re born. There’s a reason that the left is so against simple measures such as the burial of aborted fetuses. Their narrative falls apart once a preborn human is humanized in the eyes of the masses.

With the assumption that pro-life judges are about to fill the benches of courts around the country, including the current and upcoming open Supreme Court seats, the pro-life movement has never had a better opportunity to move the needle. We can save millions of babies who haven’t even been conceived yet. To do this, we need to stop renouncing our best weapon and take it back from the left. Personal liberties resonate. We simply need to remind people that preborn babies deserve liberties as well.

Media outlets across the country have been buzzing about “fake news” being a problem ever since the Democrats’ plethora of losses on election day. This problem didn’t pop up because of the election. It was rampant well before the first batch of candidates announced they were running in early 2015. In fact, it’s been around since the early days of the internet. The fact that it has such a prominent spotlight on it today is a bitter response by the left to point a finger at anyone other than Hillary Clinton and Democratic leaders.

That’s not to say that the problem isn’t real. As someone who reads every headline from over a hundred sources every day for my conservative news aggregator, I can verify that fake news has been an actual problem for a long time. It comes in different forms, the most prominent being the spinning of minor news into apocalyptic click-bait headline writing by sources desperate for advertising dollars, but the core problem is universal: the only way for smaller publishers to compete with bigger ones is to be very aggressive with their bullhorns and quite loose with the truth.

The biggest problem is that it works. Medium-sized sites like Salon and Conservative Tribune are building little empires from it. Bigger outlets like Buzzfeed and Breitbart are getting rich from it. While I’m personally not crazy about the technique, it’s effective and as a small-government Federalist I will defend their right to present their version of the news any way they wish. That doesn’t mean that it isn’t a problem.

Our society has been conditioned to search for solutions whenever there’s a problem to be solved. That’s natural, but for whatever reason most have missed the obvious one. It shouldn’t require sites like Facebook or Google to censor news from this site or that one, though as private businesses it’s their prerogative to do so if they wish. There’s no need for people to publish blacklists to help “victims” avoid the embarrassment of sharing stories that aren’t completely true. It definitely doesn’t require the government to step in and decide what to consider fake news and what to consider real. That’s a form of censorship that would take us all down a very dark road.

The solution is simple. Just like we should let the business world work out its problems through free market capitalism, we should allow the media to work out its own problems with free speech journalism. Let the media police the media. Let the people make decisions based upon trust and research. Just as someone can choose whether or not to buy at Walmart or Target, they can also choose whether they want to read their news on the New York Times or Infowars.

Sites like Newsbusters and Media Matters work the “truth beat” for their respective ideologies. Newsbusters points out the flaws of mainstream media and leftist media propaganda. Media Matters highlights every conservative perspective and tries to spin it as evil. That’s free speech journalism. That’s how it’s supposed to work.

Instead of trying to find solutions to the fake news problem, the media needs to police itself and the people need to be discerning. Just as “caveat emptor” has been a call of prudence for consumers, perhaps “inspectoris discernerem” should be the rallying cry for news consumers to be more careful with what they read and share.

Of all of Donald Trump’s cabinet decisions, Secretary of State has been the most contentious. All of the four or five remaining candidates have been attacked to some degree, including a barrage of attacks on Mitt Romney from within the Trump camp itself. All of the four or five candidates have long histories of political experience, though only John Bolton has extensive experience talking to foreign leaders (General David Petraeus interacted with foreign military leaders, but that’s not the same thing and partially irrelevant for Secretary of State).

Is it possible to hit the reset button? One of the best things about Donald Trump being President is that the old rules no longer apply. He can select someone outside of the DC inner circle and justify it. Secretary of State more than any other major cabinet decision can benefit from selecting an outsider. The co-author of The Art of the Deal should know this better than anyone. It’s easier to train a great negotiator on the nuances of foreign affairs than to train a politician in the skills of negotiating. After all, we’re the United States. We should be working towards making the best possible deals that benefit everyone, especially us.

All of the current considerations for Secretary of State come with major baggage while having minimal upsides. Romney has the most negotiating experience and has seen this put to great use during his careers in both public and private circles, but he’s scorned by a large chunk of the people who helped get Trump elected in the first place. Bolton is very old school, and while he’s known as a free-thinker, he’s also known to go off the rails from time to time. That’s a trait that Trump doesn’t need in his top diplomat. Petraeus made some horrendous decisions in his days in public life. He should not be rewarded with more responsibility just because he’s done with probation for releasing secret government information carelessly. Rudy Giuliani showed signs throughout the campaign of being well beyond his prime. He wasn’t sharp in many of his speeches and does not appear to be physically capable of the grueling travel schedule a Secretary of State requires. Bob Corker is a Democrat.

While any of these choices would be upgrades from John Kerry, they don’t quite enter the same arena as Alexander Haig, for example. In today’s geo-political maelstrom, we need an Alexander Haig.

Certainly there’s someone else within Trump’s vision who can meet all the criteria. The Secretary of State must be able to communicate the message and act in lieu of the President of the United States in foreign affairs. They need to be easily respected by foreign leaders. They need the negotiating skills that can prevent Iran Nuclear deals from even reaching a point of agreement until it’s clear that the benefits are not lopsided against us. Most importantly, they need to see the world from a perspective that aligns with the President’s vision. None of the current candidates cover all of these criteria well.

I’m not going to throw out names, though I have several in mind. If I had Trump’s ear, I would, but there’s no point in speculating for the sake of speculating. At this point, the best we can hope for is that the President-elect continues his search and is presented with better options than the four or five finalists being discussed today. They are all B-listers at best.

Earlier today, top Trump adviser KellyAnne Conway continued her attacks on potential Secretary of State Mitt Romney, this time on the Sunday morning shows. She’s not alone with Newt Gingrich and Mike Huckabee voicing their opposition to Romney, who spent the majority of the campaign season attacking Trump.

It’s unprecedented for aides and allies of a President-elect to be so publicly opposed to someone their boss is considering for one of the most prized cabinet positions. The reason it’s never happened is because it’s downright strange. What in the world is happening?

Applying logic and deductive reasoning, I’ve found only three viable possibilities, with only one of them being not weird. Let’s take a look at the possibilities in no particular order:

It’s Mike Pence vs. Conway/Gingrich/Huckabee

VP-elect Pence has been vocal about his approval of Romney in the cabinet. Assuming that Trump respects his right hand man’s opinion, he may be pulling Trump in that direction with as much force as he can muster. Seeing the stalwart support from Pence, the opposition have expressed their perspectives and feel the only way to stop it is to build a groundswell in the news and among other vocal Trump supporters to pressure Trump into not picking him.

We can assume if Romney gets the nod that Pence has more pull than most of us realized. Then again, it could be pointing to a conspiracy theory about Trump keeping his enemies closer.

Trump’s Revenge

There has been no love lost between Trump and Romney over the last year, which is why it was shocking that they would meet in the first place. Could this be an elaborate ploy with one goal: public shaming of Romney? Trump is known to be very vindictive, but he’s also been known to be instantly forgiving. If this is the case, why would his aides and allies be attacking Romney in public?

Through public shaming, this scenario demands humiliation. That means an apology. If Romney apologizes and then does not get the job, we can pretty much bank on this being the scenario the whole time.

Trump’s Just Testing the Waters

This is the one that wouldn’t surprise anyone. If Trump really doesn’t know for sure who to pick and is trying to get a diverse range of opinions from fans, media, and anyone else with a thought on the matter, this is the way to do it. Whether or not he condones the actions of his outspoken advisers remains to be seen, but he hasn’t seemed to be holding anyone back.

If this is the case, it spells doom for Romney’s chances. Other than a handful of blogs and some private endorsements, there hasn’t exactly been a rallying force behind Romney.

Regardless of who Trump picks, this strange Romney affair has been fun to watch. Whether you love Trump or hate him (does anyone feel anything in between?), you have to admit that it’s already shaping up to be a very entertaining 4-8 years.


Thank you for reading this article. Be sure to hit DaTip Jar – Peter does great work. You can find me over at The New Americana or building the Federalist Party. Or, you can hit me up on Twitter.

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