Piercing the Media Veil

I sit at the Epicenter. Spot-lit, back-lit, wire up my torso, microphone clipped to my lapel, tiny speaker wedged into my ear. An unseen producer, in a sound-proof booth, tells me to stop talking, to listen to the moderator who just interrupted me.

None other than Chuck Todd, of NBC News, shares the spotlight, his earpiece connecting him with a producer in a booth, feeding Chuck pithy rhetorical tidbits he uses to increase his stature and diminish mine. Being interviewed by him, being politically conservative, I’m getting grilled pretty good, feeling suddenly and terribly ill at ease, I ask inside my swirling head … How did I get myself into this?… yet here I am, on television, thanks to modern technology, in front of the world. At the Epicenter.

It feels like a dream, my brain teeters and rolls upon a listless vessel, and I grasp the rigging, searching for a needed phrase, while Chuck dissects my words, dances nimbly about me, and gives no quarter … Say, can’t I just rip this microphone from my lapel and walk away?… much as I may want to, it would look really bad, with lights ablaze and cameras rolling. I’m wired up, locked in place. And, people don’t just get up and walk out of televised interviews, not if they want to get invited back to the Epicenter, back to the spotlight, to sit, talk, be pampered and get paid for it … Wow! What a life! … or half a life. So, I sit here and absorb abuse from across this table. And when the cameras stop rolling and bright lights turn off, everyone’s so nice to me; we all go to the green room for yummy snacks, sparkling beverages and polite conversation … It’s worth it! … I say to my newly diminished self.

But wait! Just a minute! … suddenly, oddly enough, this exercise in “WHAT IF?” is different … now old Chuck and I are sitting on different sides of the table between us. With an unseen producer telling me how cleverly to express myself and telling a shell-shocked Chuck to shut up and take it, or else he’ll be banished from the lights … well, now … I look across this table and say, “Listen here, Chuck, you cretinous windbag, if you were an objective truth seeker, your interviews would be about your guests, and what they have to say, and how that stacks up against the perceived truths and realities of your audience. But you don’t allow for that, do you? … No! You don’t! … You don’t seek the truth, and you’re not really a journalist. You’re a liberal activist with a political agenda, all the while promoting your own status and celebrity. What a charlatan you are! What a sham this is!”

Now, that … Man, oh man! … would be something to write home about.

A most entertaining bit of hocus pocus comes to light in the classic Hollywood film, The Wizard of Oz; wherein Dorothy’s little dog Toto pulls away a curtain to reveal that the ‘all powerful’ Wizard of Oz is actually a diminutive old man, manipulating a bunch of levers and switches that create the illusion of a wizard, when in reality, none exists. The so-called ‘Wizard’ has only as much greatness and power as others attribute to him. Without his magisterial illusion, and the willing subjugation of his audience, the man behind the curtain is, in truth, rather ordinary.

What’s this got to do with Chuck Todd?… you may ask.

Piercing the media veil is much like exposing a fraudulent wizard who’s not all he claims to be. Old Chuck and others like him, denizens of the Liberal Media Complex, exert tremendous influence over public perception of what is real and what is not. These media types share stories about people and events that purportedly warrant our attention; they also suggest, by way of omission, which people and events do not warrant concern. Undergirding all this is the antiquated notion … If it isn’t on TV, then it didn’t really happen … and astonishing as it may seem, many people still believe that. They’ve never had a Toto pull back the media’s curtain to reveal that without the hidden levers, switches and resulting illusion, Chuck and his media cohorts are just people—with their own foibles, desires, prejudices, superstitions—and surprisingly ordinary.

The Liberal Media Complex, and the denizens who dwell therein, have only as much power and influence as we allow them—a sobering thought. All we need do is pierce their veil, pull it back, and acknowledge the wizardry for what it is.

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High Court Shifts … And the Left Trembles

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled this week, in Trump v. Hawaii, on the president’s so-called ‘travel ban.’ President Trump, per his constitutionally and legislatively derived authority, determined people traveling into the United States from certain countries present an unacceptable security risk to Americans. That the court recognized the president’s authority is not surprising.

What is surprising, and deeply concerning, is that the court’s decision was 5-4, instead of 9-0. Four of the justices allowed partisan politics and campaign rhetoric to override the U.S. Constitution and applicable statutory text in reaching their decision. Justice Anthony Kennedy sided with the court’s five-justice majority, and his retirement, announced Wednesday, is crucial.

President Trump will nominate a constitutionalist to replace retiring Justice Kennedy; already the president has made his choice. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell vows senate approval of Trump’s nomination before the court’s next term begins in October; Democrats, ironically, allowed this when they neutered the filibuster rule for judicial nominees during Obama’s presidency. The pendulum swings back on America’s establishment Left, as they reap what they’ve sown.

For over half a century, the Left has used the federal judiciary for partisan advantage. When their policy prescriptions failed at the ballot box or in the court of public opinion, they often persevered via judicial fiat. When the U.S. Constitution got in their way, the Left sidestepped it with activist judges prescribing policy, instead of interpreting law. “How very clever,” they thought of themselves.

President Trump will not flinch in appointing judges who faithfully interpret our laws and our constitution, as opposed to concocting the former and ignoring the latter. And Majority Leader McConnell will not squander this monumental opportunity.

As President Trump appoints more judges to the federal bench and the Republican Senate approves them, the establishment Left goes increasingly berserk. Already out of power in the White House and both houses of the U.S. Congress, as well as most state governorships and state legislatures, the Left now sees its cachet ebb with a federal judiciary that once had been their trump card (pun intended).

As if the light bulb just turned on, many leftists proclaim they must take their fight to the ballot box, not exactly a novel concept. Others on the Left want to ‘take it to the streets.’ Indeed, when ballots fail them, one anticipates the Left will become increasingly hostile in both rhetoric and method. As we’re already seeing, and have noted before … this will get ugly.

This Is Total War

The Left has declared total war. Political warfare, total nonetheless.

In a military context, total war means ‘no civilians,’ as non-combatant populations become targets, along with non-military elements such as infrastructure and industrial capacity. Nothing is off-limits in a hellish, scorched earth push to destroy the enemy’s capacity and will to fight, to cause devastation and surrender.

The leftist wing of American politics has adopted such measures, in political terms, in their determination to destroy President Trump. Witness the scorched earth sentiment of HBO comedian Bill Maher, wishing America’s economy would suffer a recession if it hurts Mr. Trump’s electoral prospects. Or Robert De Niro chanting “F*ck Trump!” to a standing ovation from the live, televised audience at the Tony Awards. To hell with the country, its economy, its citizenry, and with any sense of propriety, so long as Trump suffers too. Such sentiments reflect a Left willing to punish Americans in order to harm their duly elected president.

Rule of Law, the U.S. Constitution and functional democracy mean little to those whose disdain for Trump and his policies outweighs their respect for America’s socio-political institutions. As with Hitler’s bombing of London or the Allied bombing of Dresden during World War II, this is not about softening up one’s enemy pending frontal assault. The objective is surrender; in this case to cause Mr. Trump and his allies to abandon a fight that is too withering, too exhausting.

The formula includes collective punishment of anyone allied or closely associated with Donald Trump, all become targets, even the president’s wife. Unfounded speculation by David Frum and other media talking heads that the first lady had suffered domestic abuse is worse than preposterous; it is weaponized rhetoric designed to lessen the president’s resolve by humiliating his family. No respite, no quarter given.

Witness Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s intimidation and over-zealous prosecution of those associated with the president, and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein’s conflict-ridden empowerment of Mueller, juxtaposed against self-guided incompetence in the FBI’s non-investigation of Hillary Clinton and her associates. A politicized Justice Department targets the very chief executive under whose purview it operates; and those on one side of the political equation get a pass, while those on the other side get pulverized. The message is simple and direct—ally yourself with Donald Trump and we will target, harass and destroy you.

This behavior is not as irrational as one might think. Establishment liberals have spent decades constructing a system in which an elite political class oversees America, wherein they alone have the capacity to manage our federal bureaucracy, wherein they use government’s immensity and power to marginalize and manipulate the citizenry. In stark contrast, at the heart of President Trump’s mandate, is a return of power and influence to the American people, in accord with the rule of law, the U.S. Constitution and sustainably functioning democracy.

The way the establishment Left sees it, if Trump succeeds, the world as they know it, the value system and power structure they cling to, will cease to exist. They refuse to accept Trump’s presidency as legitimate and want him removed from office post-haste; they want to humiliate and destroy him, make an example of him, as a warning to anyone wishing to follow in his footsteps; and they see voters who elected Donald Trump as a rebellious, low brow mob, to be subdued.

The Left is at war with current political reality. It is total, unconditional, unsustainable and dangerous.

An Offer Kim Can’t Refuse

North Korea is often referred to as the ‘hermit kingdom’ due to its decades of isolation from political realities shaping the rest of the world. Worse than reclusive, North Korea is a hyper-authoritarian police state, with a wrecked economy and a populace living in ignorance, fear and squalor akin to that of medieval serfs.

For decades, North Korea’s ruthless regime has sought to shield itself by developing a nuclear arsenal, to keep outside world powers at bay. At a certain point, however, when facing difficult realities, one accepts and adapts—or one declares ‘total war’ against those realities.

Despite their seemingly irrational extremes, North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un and his regime are, in fact, pragmatists, survivors. And they sense a turning point. They sense their current operating model is unsustainable; especially with a man like President Trump leading the opposition. Kim came to meet Trump in Singapore for one reason—to merge North Korea with the twenty-first century. And Donald Trump knows a good merger when he sees one. He built his career on doing deals. He wrote a book called The Art of the Deal. He’s now in his element—brokering the world’s biggest merger.

You might say Trump has made Kim an offer he can’t refuse—denuclearize, open up your country, and welcome to the twenty-first century. For now at least, it appears the North Koreans have chosen not to declare ‘total war’ on reality. By contrast, in America, the political Left has declared ‘total war’ of its own.

To be continued …

 

What Donald Trump Owes Mike Tyson

What President Trump owes former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson is a lot. They may be pals for all we know, but either way, Trump seems to have paid attention to Mike, back in the day.

That day was the nineteen-eighties. Mike Tyson was the youngest heavyweight champion in history. He was known as a brawler, for winning fights with early round knockouts. Not particularly esteemed for his intellectual prowess, Mr. Tyson was, nonetheless, often prodded for insights regarding how he overcame whatever battle plan his older, more experienced opponent threw at him. At some point, Tyson was credited with this pithy observation: Everybody has a plan till they get punched in the mouth.

Exactly what Donald Trump does–punch them in the mouth–a lot!

Every one of his outrageous, early morning tweets is a quick jab, each seemingly insane pronouncement, from far afield, an uppercut. When Rudy Giuliani says something unpredictable about Mr. Trump’s legal strategy, a telling blow lands. The President’s more experienced opposition, in the Democrat party and the Liberal Media Complex, reflexively spend hours, if not days, responding to whatever he just hit them with.

Meanwhile, President Trump determinedly goes about appointing conservative federal judges so as to strengthen the rule of law; rolling back onerous Obama-era regulations so as to encourage economic growth; shoring up the U.S. military so as to engage America’s international allies and adversaries from a place of strength; reforming the federal tax code so as to increase business investment and encourage new private sector job creation … in other words … keeping the promises that got him elected.

Amazing what one can accomplish … with a good punch in the mouth.

“Roseanne” Is More Than Roseanne

As soon as the rebooted sitcom “Roseanne” became network TV’s highest-rated series, its home network wanted to shun it. If that doesn’t seem counter-intuitive, what does?

When the show’s star, comedian Roseanne Barr, tweeted a racist insult of Barack Obama’s close friend and adviser, Valerie Jarrett, earlier this week, ABC pounced. In a flash, they cancelled their most popular show, one projected to deliver $60 million of revenue in the coming year, and to provide employment for scores of people. “Roseanne” was also a valuable platform for ABC and its owner, The Walt Disney Company, to promote theatrical films and other programming. Cancelling “Roseanne” is a significant, self-imposed financial hit for ABC and Disney.

In addition, three Viacom Inc. channels and E.W. Scripps Co.’s Laff TV have said they will pull reruns of the original 1990s “Roseanne” series out of syndication. And so, within two days, the most popular show on TV appears to no longer exist.

Why are entertainment executives so quick to eradicate a property that makes so much money and provides meaningful employment to so many people? It seems they don’t care about lost jobs or lost revenue so much as they care about maintaining their ‘lib-cred’ (think ‘street-cred’ for pampered, leftist elites). It is now baked into the Liberal Media Complex’s bottom line, a guiding principle — increasingly a driving force — of entertainment, sports and news programming. Witness, as well, CNN and ESPN, both losing audience, while stridently pursuing leftist political agendas. Some in the Liberal Media Complex are even blaming President Trump for … you guessed it … the racist comments of Rosanne Barr.

A related query: Is it not patently offensive to compare a sitting U.S. President to an ape (which is what Bill Maher did to President Trump)? Or to call a sitting U.S. President the “c*ck-holster” of a foreign despot (which is what Stephen Colbert called President Trump)? Or to call the daughter of a sitting U.S. President a “feckless c*nt” (which is what Samantha Bee, just last night, called Ivanka Trump)? Those three comedians have lucrative TV gigs on HBO, CBS and TBS, respectively, and are drawn from a deep pool of ugly illustrations. Just try to imagine a comedian insulting a President Obama or one of his family members in such a manner … and keeping their job … yeah right!

Supporters of Mr. Trump, or any other conservative, will grow old waiting for consistency from a liberal media culture that values left-wing narrative over self-respect. Meanwhile, as American culture becomes increasingly polarized, each of us must examine the content and message that various media sources wish us to absorb, and decide whether they deserve our respect and our patronage.

Obama’s Legacy of Corruption

Reporting and commentary on Barack Obama’s presidential legacy, and Donald Trump’s efforts to undo it, have focused, until now, on policy. However, President Obama’s most enduring legacy may have less to do with policy than with an apparatus and attitude of corruption that, under his stewardship, infiltrated our federal government.

Members of President Obama’s senior staff, Attorney General Loretta Lynch, FBI Director James Comey, CIA Director John Brennan, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, among others, are implicated in the illegal use of the government’s legal and national security apparatus to protect the 2016 candidacy of Hillary Clinton and sabotage the candidacy, and presidency, of Donald Trump. This is impropriety of the highest order — and that’s putting it mildly.

A flow of damning information, leaked or otherwise, is now beyond stoppage. The year-old investigation into ‘Russian collusion’ by Special Counsel Robert Mueller is increasingly tainted with partisan overreach. Hypocrisy among the Liberal Media Complex reaches heights of self-parody. And the so-called ‘deep state’ is in a state of deep panic. President Trump has appropriately called for a full-on investigation, which may require a second special counsel to root out improprieties and illegalities that are legion.

In all of this, a line of inquiry difficult to avoid: What did President Obama know? And when did he know it?

We asked this some months ago. Establishment politicians are now doing so in polite circles. The Liberal Media Complex continues to ignore and deflect, having been part of the scam from the jump. But the deeper one digs, the more a trail of corruption leads to Mr. ‘No-Drama’ Obama himself. It will not go away until Barack Obama’s deepening legacy of corruption is fully exposed, acknowledged and dealt with.