George W. Bush may well go down as one of the most decent human beings ever to serve as President, so it is not surprising that he hasn’t said anything negative about Chief Justice John Roberts.
But, after Roberts twisted himself into a legal pretzel first to uphold Obamacare and most recently to try and deny the Trump administration its absolute right to ask a question about citizenship on the 2020 census, you have to wonder what W might be quietly thinking.
Dwight Eisenhower had this to say about his appointment of former Chief Justice Earl Warren, “The biggest damn fool mistake I ever made.”
Harry Truman appointed Tom C. Clark to the Court. “It isn’t so much that he’s a bad man, it’s just that he’s such a dumb son of a bitch.”
Roberts needs to stop worrying about his legacy and just pay attention to the damn law.
From a purely practical standpoint, you do not need a JD from Harvard to know that any administration can add a question about citizenship to the decennial census without the Court’s blessing. The constitution mandates the count, it is used to apportion congressional districts and only citizens can vote.
Even though the left has its collective panties in a twist over the current President and his attitude towards illegal aliens the constitution has not changed.
To suggest that the Secretary of Commerce’s “rationale” for adding a question which has appeared on every census until 1950 is just silly. A more pertinent issue for the Court is why the question has NOT included since then.
On what planet is a government not allowed to count residents by citizenship?
The problem Roberts has is that he seems to think his role as Chief Justice comes with a commission to be loved by both sides of any issue.
That is clearly at odds with what he told the Senate Judiciary Committee in 2005 at his confirmation hearing.
"Judges and justices are servants of the law, not the other way around. Judges are like umpires. Umpires don’t make the rules; they apply them. The role of an umpire and a judge is critical. They make sure everybody plays by the rules. But it is a limited role. Nobody ever went to a ball game to see the umpire."
Apparently Roberts has evolved in his role as an umpire.
His vote on the census question wasn’t a ball or a strike. If anything, it was a foul ball with two strikes. That is, nothing. Another pitch. But baseball doesn’t have a clock to run out and Roberts knew damn well that the census has a clock.
Roberts’ call was more like the referee in that game seven of the 2019 Vegas Golden Knights vs. the San Jose Sharks series which changed the direction of that game and caused the National Hockey League Board of Governors to actually change the rule in the off season.
And it may well be that George W. Bush’s “biggest damn fool mistake” will turn out to be John Roberts.
Fortunately, this President appears up to the challenge and he is looking for a way around the ridicules ruling the court made.
Which might mean Roberts will get this issue jammed up where his moon doesn’t shine very shortly.
Watching him twist and turn will be like watching a Christian Scientist with appendicitis.
Robert Francis O’Rourke is a classless moron.
He actually blamed the drowning deaths on the Rio Grande river of a father and his two-year-old daughter on the President.
There is a Yiddish word to describe Bobby O’Rourke. Schmuck.
Bobby. This young man, the girl’s father, Óscar Alberto Martínez Ramírez, made a decision to enter the United States illegally and hoped he could claim asylum. When they got to the international bridge in Matamoros, Mexico, the family was told the bridge was closed and they should come back the next day. There were, according to the Washington Post, hundreds in line. Ramirez and his two-year old daughter waded in to cross the river and, in essence, cut the line.
What could have possibly gone wrong?
And little Bobby O’Rourke blames the President for that?
Listen to yourself, son. The United States—above all else—is the land where you are responsible for your own safety. And your own actions. If Oscar Ramirez was too dumb to understand rivers have currents and his daughter was only two years old, he could look in the mirror and figure out who was at fault. If he wasn’t dead, that is—along with his little girl.
Here’s a hint you dumbass: It’s NOT the President's fault.
You, sir, are an idiot.
Do I feel sorry for young Valeria and her father? Of course. It is a heartbreaking scenario when a child dies for no reason at all. But who is to blame for this boneheaded stunt? One person. Óscar Alberto Martínez Ramírez. He alone is the cause of his own and his daughter’s death.
But Bobby’s moronic blathering doesn’t stop there.
He thinks that we caused a change in the Earth’s climate that must be cured by changing the way we generate and use energy.
Just think. All of that high dollar education and he never learned that we had an ice age on this planet. That our climate is ALWAYS changing.
If you think that there is anything we can do—short term or long term—to change what God has decided the Earth will do, you are truly smoking crack.
As the late George Carlin put it, “And the greatest arrogance of all: “Save the planet!” What?! Are these f**ing people kidding me?! Save the planet? We don’t even know how to take care of ourselves yet! We haven’t learned how to care for one another and we’re gonna save the f**ing planet?! I’m getting tired of that sh**!”
What Democrats like Bobby are really arguing about is a way to raise more money through a tax on carbon emissions.
If the American public is really dumb enough to elect this moron and his friends, here’s a very good question. What do you think might happen after eight years of his nonsense?
The Wall Street Journal is reporting that momentum is building for the U.S. government to subject Google and other Big Tech firms to antitrust scrutiny for fears that they have become too big and too powerful.
In today’s digital ecosystem, politicians, political parties, organizations and media all rely on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Google and Youtube to get the message out because that’s where consumers by and large go to in order to consume information.
A Pew report found 68 percent of adult Americans use Facebook, or over 170 million. 24 percent use Twitter, or about 61 million. A separate Pew report found 73 percent, or 185 million, use broadband internet. Statista reports that Google’s family of sites are the most popular in America, with 255 million unique U.S. visitors in March 2019 alone.
So, the internet is indisputably a huge part of the way people are getting information nowadays.
Now, conservatives and Republicans have become alarmed as many of these platforms are censoring and restricting speech that does not coincide with Big Tech’s social justice agenda. Deplatforming is real. Actor James Woods has been censored on Twitter, Stephen Crowder has been demonetized on Youtube (owned by Google) and Candace Owens was temporarily suspended on Facebook before the company did a reversal and declared it “an error.”
Political discrimination is destructive as it creates an incentive to silence your political opponents. Suddenly you have countrymen reporting on one another to get them deplatformed. Is this healthy for a society?
But it is not merely the reporting features that are being abused on these platforms.
Project Veritas’ James O’Keefe released a video on June 24 that showed how the algorithms that produce Google search results (and other machine learning) are programmed with algorithmic “fairness” in mind to prevent, per an internal 2017 Google document, “unjust or prejudicial treatment of people that is related to sensitive characteristics such as race, income, sexual orientation or gender, through algorithmic systems or algorithmically aided decision-making.”
Just throw in political affiliation, philosophy or religion, and one can immediately recognize how Republicans, conservatives or Christians might feel marginalized on social media platforms, but Google did not end up looking into that. A study by Google in 2018 on algorithmic fairness stated, “due to our focus on traditionally marginalized populations, we did not gather data about how more privileged populations think about or experience algorithmic fairness.”
As a Google executive in the video who was quoted in an undercover camera noted, “Communities who are in power and have traditionally been in power are not who I’m solving fairness for.”
But if Google had looked at other groups, they would have likely found that supposedly “privileged” populations can feel marginalized, too. The 2018 study unsurprisingly found that participants expressed, “In addition to their concerns about potential harms to themselves and society, participants also indicated that algorithmic fairness (or lack thereof) could substantially affect their trust in a company or product” and that “when participants perceived companies were protecting them from unfairness or discrimination, it greatly enhanced user trust and strengthened their relationships with those companies.”
The thing is, nobody wants to be discriminated against, and if they are it will affect their perception of the company or companies that are doing it. Deplatforming, censorship and manipulating search and news results undermines trust in these Big Tech firms, and suddenly makes them a problem that many want to solve. No need for another focus group.
So, what responsibility does Big Tech have to foster our way of life and our competitive system of representative government, if any?
I would argue just as much responsibility as they feel to tackle the issue of fairness for historically marginalized groups, if for no other reason than it is good, sound business to cater to all comers, particularly in the political and governmental sphere. Why make enemies? It’s provocative.
Many solutions have been proposed to help there to be a level playing field on the Internet. Some are heavy-handed and appear to miss the target, while others are more narrow.
There is the Federal Communications Commission route, which might seek to make public utilities out of Big Tech companies, and all the regulation that comes with that. Net neutrality springs to mind, although that appeared more focused on throttling broadband speeds due to how much data was being used, whereas the issues today appear to focus on content-based censorship.
There is antitrust approach, whether via the Federal Trade Commission or the Department of Justice Antitrust Division, that might envision breaking up these large companies. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) has come out for this approach. In a recent statement, she said, “As these companies have grown larger and more powerful, they have used their resources and control over the way we use the internet to squash small businesses and innovation, and substitute their own financial interests for the broader interests of the American people. To restore the balance of power in our democracy, to promote competition, and to ensure that the next generation of technology innovation is as vibrant as the last, it’s time to break up our biggest tech companies.”
Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act exempts “interactive computer services” from liability of what their users post, and grants them the power to remove items at their discretion they find objectionable. Some have proposed simply removing the liability protections, which would render sites that allow users to write whatever they want suddenly subject to liability of hundreds of millions of users. It would also effectively destroy the Internet, since nobody would be willing to assume the risk of hosting somebody else’s material that might be defamatory.
Some have called for conservatives to boycott these platforms and to take their business elsewhere or to make their own platforms, but what sort of echo chamber would we wind up with? More to the point, to win elections, Republicans have to appeal to independents and unaffiliated voters. You buy ads where there’s ad space to reach undecideds. Insular practices of exclusively only talking to partisans on your side is a recipe for being in the minority for a very long time. It does not grow a political movement to do that.
This author has posited that perhaps Congress could narrowly expand the franchise of protected groups under civil rights to include politics, philosophy and the like (although excluding employment hiring for exclusive organizations like political parties and organizations) and defining interactive computer services as public accommodations so that services cannot be denied on the basis of partisan differences. Throw in banking, DNS resolution, web hosting and email services as public accommodations while we’re at it for good measure.
From the perspectives of the Big Tech companies, surely they have noticed a marked uptick in calls to regulate their firms? Conservatives complain about censorship. Elizabeth Warren is worried about smaller businesses. The calls for regulation are directly proportionate to how powerful these firms have become. Do any of the above options sound profitable or more like a regulatory headache that will cost millions or billions of dollars to manage?
And these are not even things we would normally consider, but throw in the prospect of censorship and suddenly it’s an existential matter of survival. Republicans who might normally defend these companies from regulation might look the other way when it comes up now. See how that works?
The truth is, I’m taking time out of my column to focus on this issue and so are many other organizations that are worried they too could be censored. The platforms we’re talking about have such market saturation that is so pervasive it could be utilized to discriminate on the basis of politics in order foster conditions conducive to one-party rule, which I believe to be dangerous.
More broadly, groups like Americans for Limited Government and political parties depend on a competitive political system to function. If we and others like us were suddenly barred from posting on social media or hosting a website or sending emails, suffice to say we would not function for much longer.
In a representative form of government, political parties’ access to media and their followers are critical to building and growing constituencies, and in the digital age these represent a digital sort of civil rights, and they must be protected in order for that system to continue to exist. One party systems do not respect civil rights. They squelch dissent to consolidate power and they target political opponents and critics of the system.
The great Renaissance philosopher Niccolo Machiavelli supposed that there were but two forms of government, republics and principalities, perhaps for that reason. One is ruled by the consent of the governed and the separation of powers, and the other by the will and domination of the state and over time needs to instill fear in order to govern.
There are liberal democracies that foster debate, and then there are one party systems that demand loyalty to the state. There’s not much in between.
The alarming trends we’re seeing with Big Tech companies engaging in censorship in the pursuit of “fairness” look a lot like a bid for one party rule. And the thing about one party systems is, once you have one, it’s really, really hard to get rid of it and there’s no guarantee that your favored class will be represented in its leadership. Sometimes those who support the rise of such a system wind up being marginalized by it. Look no further than Elizabeth Warren to see what lies at the end of that tunnel. Is it worth the risk? Be careful what you wish for.
Assuming you are reading this on the day this electronic newspaper is officially dated, this is the 243rd anniversary of some very brave men telling a king, 3,539 miles away, to stuff it and that they were going to chart their own destiny, create their own nation.
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”
Back in those days, we had whatever government was installed by that king, 3,539 miles away. And he enforced his dictates by military “persuasion.”
This was the Continental Congressional response:
“That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes.”
That was then.
Today, we no longer have a Continental Congress. We have a congress in which the House of Representatives is dominated by clowns like Adam Schiff, Alexandria Ocasio Cortez, Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar. We have a Senate dominated by Republicans, some of who have higher political ambitions and some who just want to hold the nation together.
And we have a President who many believe was the instrument that many citizens voted for to fix that government which they believe had become “destructive of these ends.”
We also have a Supreme Court which recently held that it is not unconstitutional to ask a census question about citizenship BUT they didn’t like the attitude of the Secretary of Commerce so they sent it back to a lower court to try and run out the clock. How judicial of them.
In 2020, we are going to have a referendum on what the citizens actually think of the dysfunction we find in our elected government.
The President will stand for re-election, so will most of the various clowns in Congress, as you and I get our official say.
My guess is that in the 244th year since those men appended their names to the document in the National Archives, you and I will make it clear what we decided in 2016, which is to say that we had enough. That our government was becoming oppressive and was beginning—actually well past beginning—to take away from those unalienable Rights. That is why we sent Donald Trump to Washington.
The opposition to the President wants open borders, state sponsored and controlled healthcare, the right to kill unborn babies with their hearts beating, the repeal of the right to keep and bear arms, taxing at obscene rates job creators and a host of other stupid ideas which would cripple the very reasons that those guys in Philadelphia wrote and signed that document.
They disguise their desires by couching the unacceptable with misleading words.
Gun confiscation becomes gun safety. Killing babies with detectable heartbeats becomes reproductive health rights. State sponsored and controlled healthcare becomes Medicare for All. Open borders becomes sanctuary cities and sanctuary states.
These folks use their tongues prettier than the hookers who service some of the men in Congress.
Frankly, if we don’t put a stop to this nonsense in 2020, we’ll deserve everything we get.
I’ve never blamed the Democrats for Barack Obama. I blamed the Republicans. 2008 and 2012 were winnable elections. But you cannot beat somebody with nobody. And John McCain was Obama light. Mitt Romney invented Obamacare in Massachusetts when he was governor. Why elect the diet drink when you can have the real thing?
That said, Trump’s opposition has done us a huge favor. They have shown us who they really are. It’s our job to vote NO!
One of my best friends’ wife has a rare form of cancer. Just diagnosed.
Another one of my best friends has another form of cancer. Radiation is knocking the crap out of him.
Another one of my best friends died of pancreatic cancer a few years back.
In the immortal words of a certain Democrat running for his Presidential nomination in the clown show, “it’s a big effing deal”.
It is. And that particular candidate, whatever his level of knowledge and competence is, says he wants to cure it as part of his campaign.
Now, in fairness, once you get into the first few minutes of the third period of life (isn’t everybody a hockey fan?), it’s not quite as big a deal as when you are in your 30s, but we live in a world where we simply do not expect a disease to eradicate us. Our expectations are the other way around.
Back in 1991, Ervin “Magic” Johnson announced that he had tested positive for the HIV virus which is a precursor for AIDS. Back then, I was running the basketball radio network for Oral Roberts University in addition to owning a group of Oklahoma radio stations.
I vividly remember some young players(several of whom have retired from the NBA now) asking the late coach, Ken Trickey, when they would find a cure for AIDS.
“When,” said one of the best coaches and human beings it has ever been my privilege to know, “the research money runs out.”
The truth is often unsettling.
When President John F. Kennedy launched us in a race to the moon, we, as a nation, got it done inside a decade. There was little or no political pushback. First, we were in a race with the Russians. And, second, we had pure research being funded by the Federal government. Finally, there was a specific goal. To land astronauts on the moon and bring them back to Earth safely.
Over the years, we have not cured AIDS, but it is no longer a virtual death sentence. For lack of a better term, we have contained it. And Magic Johnson played a role. So did George W. Bush, when he was President. But the major reason is very hard-working scientists and researchers. And 28 years.
One of the reasons that the Federal government can’t do a cancer moon shot today is that the elites in Washington have worked themselves into a position where nobody—literally nobody—trusts them anymore to do the right thing for the right reasons.
On one hand you have a President who has the support of what Hillary Clinton calls the deplorables.
And on the other, you have all of the Democrat clown show who hates the President and will do almost anything to deny him a crumb.
Frankly, if President Trump were to single-handedly cure cancer, on his own dime, the Democrats would accuse him of conspiring to overpopulate the Earth.
That said, most of what happens in Washington is designed to make some segment of voting America feel good. The truth is that most of Congress is focused on first getting elected and then retaining power. Life amongst the elite is pretty good—for them.
Going to the moon, made us—both the idiots in Washington as well as you and me—feel really good. I remember exactly where I was when Neil Armstrong hopped off the step of the Eagle landing module onto the moon. Even though I grew up in the town where penicillin was discovered, that discovery never galvanized the whole small city, much less the whole country although it was a great public good.
Sadly, the eradication of cancer will never have a big enough political effect to allow us to attack it the same way we got to the moon.
That said, it will happen—maybe even during this third period assuming no overtime.
It will happen because the researchers working on it are incredibly smart people and don’t need a President to declare war on a disease to be motivated.
Government cannot solve all—or even most—of mankind’s problems. Only smart people can.
The other day, the Orlando Sentinel printed an editorial saying that it would not endorse President Trump in 2020.
It was signed by the “editorial board” of the newspaper which really means it was written by a guy named Mike Lafferty, whoever the hell he is. (Editor's note: He's the opinion editor for the Orlando Sentinel)
Now here’s the difference between a clown like that and people like me.
We sign our names to what we think. We don’t hide behind anything.
Lafferty masquerades as the “institutional voice of the Orlando Sentinel.” His own words.
Now, first of all, it’s not like this newspaper is particularly relevant. It’s owned by the Tribune Publishing Company— as in the Chicago Tribune. That sound you hear is Colonel Robert McCormick turning over slowly in his grave.
The Orlando newspaper has no particular right to an “institutional” voice. Truth be told, who in Orlando gives a flip what some clown behind a computer thinks?
The paper is run by the same kind of people who populate failing publications everywhere these days and I have to wonder if the internet is as big a factor in that failing as is their baked-in liberalism.
Walk through most newsrooms these days and you’ll meet people who just KNOW what politicians are doing wrong but have absolutely no first hand knowledge of the real world or how it works. They believe the idiot “polls” that they and their competitors churn out despite the fact that they are wrong more often than not because the same thing they hold responsible for killing newspapers—progress—has made it very difficult to get a sample. They think Twitter is news. They think Facebook is news. Hell, some of them think their bowl movements are news.
And they have the nerve to tell us—unsigned—who THEY endorse?
Here’s an idea: Go outside and find some real news. You know, who, what, when where and, when you actually know something, why.
Stop trying to tell folks who are older and smarter than you—which, from what we read are much smarter than you—how to live.
Or, even better, if you’re so smart, show us. To quote Teddy Roosevelt, “It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”
Most if not all of the people you will read here have been in that arena. That’s why we are NOT afraid to sign our names.
Swathed in an elegant suit of red, white and blue and enveloped by a huge crowd of the same beautiful hues, President Donald J. Trump announced his re-election campaign Tuesday night.
After reviewing the failures and treachery of his opposition and the Fake News, he counted at length the accomplishments of the American people and his administration. He ushered in the summer of our politics, economy and culture and outlined the challenges we face and how we will Keep America Great.
Of course, the lamestream media couldn’t focus on anything but Trump’s deserved criticism of them and the reptiles of Washington’s political swamp.
“Jabbing at the press and poking the eye of the political establishment he ran against in 2016, President Donald Trump officially kicked off his reelection campaign Tuesday night with a grievance-filled Florida rally that focused more on settling scores than laying out his agenda for a second term,” said AP in its story immediately after the speech.
And that’s completely a lie.
The truth is he focused mainly on how we’ve made America great again and what we’ll do in his second term to keep America great.
He started by saying our movement is made up of hard-working patriots. Next, he pointed out our country is thriving, prospering, booming and soaring to new heights. He added, “Our future has never looked brighter or sharper.”
We’ve reclaimed our government from a permanent political class that has enriched itself at the expense of the American people. We’ve transferred power back to you, the people of the USA. We’ve restored the future America deserves.
Yes, he observed his opponents are driven by hatred and rage. The truth of that was encapsulated in Hillary Clinton’s calling half of America “deplorables and irredeemables.” (Editor's note: For those that don't want to watch the link, here is Clinton's full quote: "We are living in a volatile political climate. You know, just to be grossly generalist, but you could put half of Trump's supporters into what I call the basket of deplorables. (laughter, applause) Right? The racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic - you name it. And, unfortunately there are people like that. And he has lifted them up. He has given voice to their websites that used to only have 11,000 people - now have 11 million. He tweets and retweets their offensive hateful mean spirited rhetoric. Now, some of those folks - they are irredeemable, but thankfully - they are not America. But the other basket - and I know this because I look at this crowd and I see friends from all over America here - I see friends from Florida and Georgia and South Carolina and Texas, as well as, you know - New York and California - but that other basket of people are people who feel that the government has let them down, the economy has let them down, nobody cares about them, nobody worries about what happens to their lives and their futures, and they're just desperate for change. It doesn't really even matter where it comes from. They don't buy everything he (Trump) says, but he seem to hold out some hope that their lives will be different. They won't wake up and see their jobs disappear, lose a kid to heroine, feel like they're in a dead-end. Those are people we have to understand and empathize with as well.")
He noted the progress he and the senate have made in restoring a competent non-political judiciary that promotes the rule of law, not politics from the bench. Despite the vicious attacks against a great jurist, Brett Kavanaugh.
He discussed at various points the progress we’re making on the human tragedy of massive illegal immigration and initiatives he will be proposing. He announced a July 4th celebration of America in Washington.
In officially announcing his reelection campaign, he promised, “I will never, ever let you down.” He promised his heart, mind and soul. He observed the essence of his administration has been keeping his promises and not being co-opted by the special interests. And he generously shared credit with many folks for the progress we’re making.
He emphasized the progress on unemployment: lowest figures ever for African Americans, Hispanic Americans and Asian Americans. Lowest rates in 74 years for women. And wages are rising, especially for low-income workers.
These results are due to cutting and reforming the onerous and unnecessary regulations that have long accumulated due to special interests and statist liberals and progressive ideologues. Also to his historic tax cuts. Further, he celebrated America’s energy independence, noting our air and water are cleaner than in many decades and better than most places in the world.
He pointed to crime policy reform, progress against opioids (thank you, Melania), right-to-try initiatives, and health care for military veterans.
He promised we’ll have fair trade and related relations with China, or none at all. He highlighted the progress we’ve made with Mexico and Canada. He discussed how we stand up to evil empires including Russia and Iran, where the Obama administration kowtowed to them. He touted our relationship with the good nation of Israel. And we support the people of Cuba and Venezuela against socialist oppression and poverty.
Yes, he noted that Democrats are driven by hatred and rage. They want to keep us splintered and divided as they become ever more radical and unhinged.
He proclaimed, “America will never be a socialist country. As Republicans, we believe in freedom, not socialism.” President Trump defended free speech, religious liberty and the right to bear arms.
He opposes taxpayer funded abortions and said, “Republicans believe that every life is a sacred gift from God.”
Finally, he promised we’ll provide opportunity for our children and make America wealthy, strong, safe and great again. But the lamestream press won’t acknowledge this summer of our politics.
So Nancy Pelosi wants to put President Trump in prison? And Robert Francis O’Rourke says it’s time to impeach the President?
And the rest of the 2020 Democrat clown show thinks that Americans—like you and me—hate the President?
Let me tell you a story about a chance meeting I had the other day at a Reno, Nevada Jiffy Lube.
I took my daily driver—a 1994 Ford Explorer with about 350,000 miles (there’s a reason Ford has been making vehicles for 115 years)—to have the air conditioner worked on. Reno had hit 90 degrees the day before.
The guy sitting next to me in the waiting room heard me on the cell phone to one of my business associates and asked what I did for a living.
I replied that I was the CEO of USA Radio Networks and he asked what station we had in the area. I replied KNNR, 1400 AM. He replied, ahhh…Wayne Allyn Root’s station. (Also the Vegas Golden Knights' station.)
Then another guy in the waiting room chimed in. Said he watched Root on Newsmax and didn’t know that the whole show (which we syndicate) was available in Reno. (We simulcast the 5-6pm hour with Newsmax, Wayne airs from 3-6pm Pacific.)
Then, the conversation turned to the media, President Trump and the Democrat clown show as these conversations often do. (I have a lot of them, wherever I go, it's a blessing I inherited from my late father.)
Folks, this was an unsolicited conversation in a flyover town which is usually considered a 50-50 split between hardcore conservatives and environmental liberals. A Jiffy Lube waiting room hardly tilts left or right. It’s composed of people getting their cars worked on—as American as it gets in a general sort of way.
Yet, as our 30 minutes of conversation went on, there was no debating anyone in the room. Nobody in that room was against the President.
It was exactly like my friends in farm and ranch country.
When I talk to farmers where I grew up in the Midwest (mostly corn and beans), they acknowledge that the President’s tariff and threats of tariffs have hurt them a bit. BUT! They are with the President because they can see beyond the tips of their noses.
It is the same with most—or all—of my rancher friends.
Put as bluntly as I know how, this is not a President who has no support. He has support in places the Democrats (and their friends in the media) have no idea about.
There are people who have never been west of the Hudson River who seem to think that this President is not in the mainstream of American thought.
There are people who have never been east of the Los Angeles County line who think the same thing.
Unless things change radically before November of 2020, boy, are they in for a surprise.
The very same lamo media which spends 90 percent of its time attacking this President did the same thing in the first four years of Ronald Reagan’s term. They have a very short memory of that today. Especially after Reagan won 49 states in the 1984 election.
He was called a third rate actor and that was some of the nicest stuff. Even faux conservative George Will said things about Americans being “taxophobic” and Reagan’s “Morning in America goo.” Reagan got the same crap that President Trump gets, the difference being that there was no Fox News and newspapers, today, are dying—we suspect at least partially because of their baked-in liberalism.
I’m not predicting a 49 state Trump win in 2020. But then, who predicted that Toronto would win the NBA championship and St. Louis would win Lord Stanley’s Cup? Certainly not the experts.
And before you listen to those “experts” talk about their “polls”, remember that these were the same shameless clowns who had Hillary beating Trump by 7 points ON ELECTION DAY!
I’m not part of the conservative club any more than I’m part of the liberal club. If I call them more conservative than liberal, that’s because it is the way I happen to see things.
The reason for that is my late father, Philip Weinberg.
He always taught by example, led from the front and encouraged me to act a little like Howard Cosell, telling it like it is and letting the chips fall where they may. So if you wonder why I don’t spout anybody’s party line except my own, it is because he taught me how valuable independence can be.
Included in that lesson was also doing the right thing no matter who you anger.
The older you get, the more that you realize Father’s Day may not just be a ploy by the greeting card manufacturers to sell more cards and retailers to sell more stuff but should just be taken at face value as an opportunity to thank and honor the man who raised you.
This Sunday will be the seventh Father’s Day since his death and those lessons he taught become clearer with every passing year. (Also becoming clearer is that getting old is not for sissies.)
Unlike the late Tim Russert I can never imagine calling my father, “Big Phil.” But he was.
Philip Weinberg’s public title on the day he died in 2012 was Professor Emeritus at Bradley University.
The title barely began to cover his career and his public life.
But growing up in his shadow gave me a perspective on life that many people, for many reasons, will never get.
He rarely lectured my sisters and me. His example was usually enough. He continuously taught by example that this is the United States of America and any little boy or girl could grow up to be President, or publish a newspaper, run a radio network or swing any bat you’re big enough to want to pick up.
He was the living embodiment of the concept that ordinary people can do extraordinary things by simply putting one foot in front of the other and moving forward. If that were all he taught me in 60 years, it would have been plenty. But he also taught me that when you do get where you want to go, grace and humility can take you even farther. And, trust me, that’s a difficult lesson to learn no matter who is trying to teach it.
It is possible—although I’m not sure he would have admitted it—that he learned some or all of these things as he was raising his children and that the Phil Weinberg when he left us was as much the product of having raised three children as those children are the product of having been raised by him and my mother. It also occurs to me in hindsight that much of what he taught us was as difficult for him to implement as it was for us.
Kids don’t come with operating manuals and my father was an engineer by training. But the lessons he taught—intentionally or otherwise—have become so valuable that I can only hope that I’m capable of passing at least some of them on to my own millennial stepchildren.
As valuable as the lessons, are the memories. I vividly remember standing outside an apartment complex in Brooklyn with him telling me, “Son, there used to be a baseball stadium here and a real baseball team played there.” He never acknowledged that the Dodgers had moved to LA and abandoned Ebbets Field. And, given the choice between the Dodgers and the Angels when I owned a Las Vegas radio station, I chose the Angels because he would have been horrified had I consorted with dem bums…
I remember him showing me my first mainframe computer in the early 1960s and his precise explanation of how the monster IBM System 360 worked.
I remember coming home one Friday in 1963 to the death of John Kennedy and his explanation that the country is bigger than just one man and things would be just fine because that is the genius of this nation’s founders. And I also remember the summer trips we were able to take so he could graphically illustrate exactly how big this nation is.
He might have missed a few little league games (I never got past the minors in the Richwoods Little League anyway) but he never missed a crisis. You could tell when something was relatively unimportant—he wouldn’t hesitate to yell at you. But when the chips were down, there was nobody you would rather have covering your back. Until almost the day he died, he was the first call I and my sisters made when there was a problem. However difficult the problem was, his calm analysis was always dead on and his advice and support were invaluable.
In the immortal words of Michael Corleone, “what better consigliore can I have than my father?”
Progressivism was a set of related movements in the U.S. after the Civil War up to World War II. Modern progressives emphasize movements related to government corruption, women’s suffrage, municipal administration, education, promoting abortion, child and pro-union labor laws, conservation, internationalism, culture and especially activist judges promoting a “living constitution” against originalism. Also, aggressive economic regulation and anti-trust law, much of which has been discredited by experience.
They studiously overlook as embarrassing progressivism’s first cause, eugenics (“scientific” racism); plus alcohol prohibition; and opposition to prostitution and voter fraud – because they’re not popular with today’s progressives. But where they used to soft-peddle governmental coercion and socialism as unacceptably harsh, modern progressives now proudly trumpet them.
Prohibition of alcohol and prostitution were greatly rooted in traditional religion, but many other progressive causes – especially scientific racism and opposition to basic principles of America’s founding – were rooted in disdain for religion. So, progressives experienced much cognitive dissonance.
The original progressive causes quickly found their natural partner, liberal statism. This 19th Century term stands for extensive government intervention in economic and social matters and not leaving much room for traditional and voluntary social, economic and political institutions and practices. Statism gave progressivism its key means: the mushrooming administrative state.
The movement was bi-partisan. Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson were the main leaders.
Progressivism was somewhat a reaction to the 19th Century rise of industrial and urban society. It’s called a reform movement because it sought to create new social and political means to preserve the positions of many groups – especially labor, farmers and whites – against new developments. Hence, much populist progressivism is reactionary.
An even larger part of the progressive movements was based on two related ideas. First, that there is an arc of history moving society toward ever better practices, policies and institutions – ergo, progress. Second and even more important, that the small socio-political elite fraction of the population, via the use of science (especially emerging social sciences) and their asserted natural intellectual and ethical superiority, would discern that arc of history and should therefore be given the power to effect their vision of it.
Thus, the disdain for traditional democratic means and religion and for the founding principles based on them.
A third key ingredient was arrogance due to their ignorance of possible unintended consequences and their stupidity in assuming they could remake the world and human beings, and everything would work just as they intended. Racism is the most obvious part of their ignorance and stupidity. But what we know today about their misplaced faith in rampant economic intervention (including labor law), internationalism and substitution of judicial for political means also drives home this point.
Ditto, their belief that government action is inherently benign (because it will be guided by the progressives implementing the arc of history, of course), and government won’t be co-opted by predatory special interests to prey upon the people and the public interest. The Founders understood the true nature and risks of government, so they designed a constitution to protect people and the public interest from them. These ideas were anathema to progressives.
Even more than FDR’s New Deal, LBJ’s Great Society was the apogee of progressivism and statism in the 20th Century. Then they subsided somewhat.
However, in this century, they have gained a new life, now replacing the good early causes with identity politics; radical economic egalitarianism; socialism; political correctness and suppression of free speech; environmental catastrophe dogma; and opposition to real science.
Classic failures of progressivism such as judicial activism are now joined by these predatory special interests as major parts of the sad legacy we’re leaving. Plus, of course, long-term slow economic growth and thus diminished human wellbeing and fairness.
Next time, examples and a few solutions.