These leftist loons are not only embarrassing themselves by saying these detention areas are like concentration camps but they are disrespecting Holocaust victims.
I have no words for the two moonbats in the final picture.
WASHINGTON, DC — Open borders protesters in Washington, DC, laid the defamatory slurs on thick in protest signs attacking President Trump, his administration, and Republicans as racists on the basis of separating minors from adults who illegally cross the U.S. southern border.
One sign depicted the President as Hitler with the words, “History has its eyes on you”:
“This is some Nazi SHIT,” read another:
One man held a “concentration camps are bad,” sign:
“This reboot sucks,” read a sign that displayed the image of a star like ones used to pin on Jews during the Holocaust:
“ICE Trump Republicans = Nazis,” read another sign held aloft in front of the White House:
More signs lambasted Trump and others as racists. Many signs suggested deporting “racists” and keeping illegal aliens in the United States.
“Keep the kids, deport the racists,” read a simple black sign written in white letters:
“MAGA Values Fear Bigotry Child Abuse,” read a sign slapped on a puppet-like image of the President on a pole:
One man held up a sign with photos of past racial segregation in the U.S. with the words, “Don’t be on the wrong side of history again”:
The leftist Answer Coalition and National Nurses United had protesters waving signs. An Answer Coalition sign joined in the “racism” accusation chorus.
As the final straggling protesters brought up the end of the protest march, two protesters held American flags upside down.
President Trump is the first of several presidents to finally bring about the congressionally approved move of the U.S. embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to the capital of Jerusalem.
On Holocaust Remembrance Day this year Trump proclaimed that Americans have a “moral obligation to combat anti-Semitism, confront hate and prevent genocide.”
Samuel Tom Holiday was well into his senior years before his friends and family had any idea how much he had contributed to the Allied cause during the Second World War.
It was common knowledge that Holiday had enlisted in the Marine Corps at 19 years old and battled Axis forces all across the Pacific theater, from Saipan to Iwo Jima and the Marshall Islands.
His family was also aware that, despite having a mortar explode near his ear, he never felt his life was in danger during combat because he carried items sacred to the Navajo in a pouch around his neck wherever he went.
They were doubtless proud of his Purple Heart and other recognitions that he earned – but it would be over two decades after the end of WWII before the magnitude of his contributions began to see the light of day.
In 1968, the United States declassified the Code Talker program of which Holiday was a part. At the height of the war in 1942, the Marine Corps recruited 29 Native American servicemen to develop an unbreakable code based on their language that the Allies could use to coordinate the war without fear of Japanese radio surveillance.
While successive iterations of the German Enigma code were frustrating the Allies’ attempts to snoop on Axis radio communications, the code that the Marine Corps developed was impenetrable. The code was developed within 2 weeks, and the program was expanded to include 400 Native Americans who were trained in the code and deployed throughout the Pacific.
The program was a tightly-controlled secret until its declassification, and Holiday said little about his involvement until the 1980s.
Holiday and the other Code Talkers were awarded a Certificate of Recognition for their work in 1982 by then-president George Bush Sr., and in 1994 he received a Congressional Silver Medal from Bush’s successor, Bill Clinton.
As knowledge of the program began to spread, Holiday himself began to speak about the highly-successful code the Allies used; it is difficult to estimate exactly how many lives the Code Talkers may have saved by using their languages to stonewall enemy codebreakers. The Allies’ debt to these men – some volunteers, and others drafted into service – cannot be overstated.
Two codes were developed by the original 29 Native American specialists – type one, which involved assigning a Navajo word to each letter of the alphabet, and type two, which were literal translations.
The Code Talkers often had to develop new words to describe modern technology, resulting, for example, in translations of “ship” and “cargo plane” into descriptors “house on water” and “eagle”.
The resulting communications were secure because of the Axis forces’ total lack of familiarity with Native American languages, and the code was successfully used without being broken through the end of the War.
With Holiday’s death on June 11, 2018, there are now as few as 10 Code Talker veterans remaining of the original 400 that served in the war. His legacy will persist in the efforts he made in later years to spread awareness of the contribution made by Native Americans’ to the war, including a book he co-authored in 2013 about his experiences, Under the Eagle: Samuel Holiday, Code Talker.
Holiday frequently appeared at speaking engagements dressed in traditional Navajo clothing and spoke at several Utah schools to share the story of the Code Talkers with children.
Holiday passed away surrounded by his family in the nursing home where he spent his final years. He will be buried on the Kayenta, the Arizona Navajo Reservation, next to his late wife. His six children, 35 grandchildren, 30 great-grandchildren and 2 great-great-grandchildren will carry on the memory of his sacrifices made during the war and the tremendous impact of his work as a Code Talker.
I do not think Ted Cruz needs to be on President Trump’s short list for the Supreme Court in my humble opinion Mike Lee is more of an originalist.
Although his name has never been included in any of President Trump’s lists of potential Supreme Court Justices, Texas Senator and former Trump rival Ted Cruz (R-TX) may possibly be the best choice to replace retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy.
Senator Cruz has certainly, in his time in the Senate and before that as Solicitor General of Texas, been a rock solid constitutional conservative. His run as Solicitor General of Texas from 2003 to 2008, under then Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, saw Cruz argue before the Supreme Court nine times, while winning a majority of his cases. The position had been recently established in 1999 and Abbott selected Cruz behind the logic that Cruz would take a “leadership role in the United States in articulating a vision of strict constructionism.”
In addition to Ted Cruz’s nine arguments before the Supreme Court, which happens to be more than any other current member of Congress, he has also authored 70 U.S. Supreme Court briefs. The cases he has been involved with have been among the most notable in recent legal history including the landmark case District of Columbia v. Heller. Cruz authored the amicus brief presented by Abbott that was signed by the attorneys general of 31 states. It was a major victory for 2nd Amendment proponents and a career highlight for the future presidential candidate.
Back in spring of 2016, when then Candidate Trump released his original list of 11 potential replacements for the recently deceased Antonin Scalia, he stated he planned to use the list “as a guide to nominate our next United States Supreme Court Justices” and said the names are “representative of the kind of constitutional principles I value.”
All 11 names, which included Judges Steven Colloton of Iowa, Allison Eid of Colorado, Raymond Gruender of Missouri, Thomas Hardiman of Pennsylvania, Raymond Kethledge of Michigan, Joan Larsen of Michigan, Thomas Lee of Utah, William Pryor of Alabama, David Stras of Minnesota, Diane Sykes of Wisconsin and Don Willett of Texas, were notable and certainly would do an incredible job in the Supreme Court. But was excluding Tec Cruz, the man Harvard Law Professor Alan Dershowitz called, “one of the best students I ever had, because a teachers loves to be challenged,” a mistake by the then presumptive Republican nominee?
The fact that he had just completed a grueling and at times, dirty primary against Senator Cruz may have been the driving force behind this notable omission. Just about 2 weeks before the release of the list, on May 3rd, 2016, the day of the fateful Indiana Primary which led to the suspension of the Cruz campaign, Americans woke up to Trump leveling accusations against Ted Cruz’s father, Rafael Cruz, of conspiring with Lee Harvey Oswald to assassinate President Kennedy on Fox and Friends.
This was at the tail end of a tense primary that began as an intriguing bromance between the young Senator and the legendary business empresario. Back in the summer of 2015, the 2 powerhouses came together to speak at a rally denouncing the controversial Iran Nuclear Deal. The Senator’s campaign had invited Trump to join the rally, which was sponsored by Tea Party Patriots, Center for Security Policy, as well as the Zionist Organization of America and held at the Capitol.
The warm and fuzzy vibe between the two men would be short lived but many observers at the time even saw the potential of a Trump/Cruz ticket, as possible during that period of time. Cruz was lagging far behind Trump in polling and his meteoric rise to 2nd place was still many months away.
Despite all the debate night personal shots and half-hearted endorsements that have defined their relationship, both men seem to have moved past the bitterness of 2016. This unique opportunity that has been presented to President Trump can help advance his agenda in a multitude of ways should he nominate Cruz.
First, by accepting the nomination, his top 2016 rival would no longer look to ever run for President again. Secondly, the young, healthy and energetic Cruz, at age 47 would meet Trump’s criteria for a new Justice that will sit on the bench for the next 40 years, providing another conservative stalwart in the Court. Thirdly, it may finally be the act that kills off the last of the never Trumpers on the far right, who never forgave the president for tactics employed during the primary. With another celebrity presidential campaign by the powerful and influential Oprah Winfrey potentially looming for 2020, President Trump may need to consolidate the entire Republican base for reelection. Sometimes the best decisions are also the easiest.
With this new member of the Supreme Court the court will finally get back to interoperating the Constitution instead of rewriting it.
With Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy’s announcement that he will be retiring within the upcoming month it looks like President Donald Trump will very soon have the opportunity to nominate and confirm another constitutionally-minded person to the Supreme Court.
Indeed, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY)is already preparingto have the Senate potentially confirm President Trump’s nominee before the November 2018 midterm elections.
While we still have a few days until President Trump announces his pick, currently scheduled for July 9, speculation is ranging widely. Yet President Trump has said he will likely be sticking to the initial 20-person list he described during the 2016 election, including five more names to that.
Under our Constitutional framework, the Supreme Court is one of our three co-equal branches of government. However historically and even in recent years, that theoretical understanding has been marred by the complexities of reality.
Given the Supreme Court’s appointed and lifetime nature, small staff, as well as far more reclusive activities in comparison to the high-publicity executive and legislative branches, it seems people often feel it is either doing too much or too little.
Indeed in recent years the Supreme Court has been particularly active, ruling on a wide-range of divisive social, cultural, and economic issues that have led it to be a far more partisan battleground than it was in prior decades.
Too often now when the Supreme Court rules in favor of one side, we praise it as if it were a legislative vote. If the policy results are against what we hoped for, we deride it. While such a paradigm would be sensible were we talking about policy making channels, it has been warned for a long time – particularly by a society I have been a leader in and still am part of,the Federalist Society– that it would lead down a dark and tumultuous road for our nation’s long-term health.
And, well, here we are. The Supreme Court is now less seen as a final interpreter of our laws and arbiter of the Constitution but rather as just another political battleground.
Before saying I am too idealistic, remember there was a time not too long ago when Supreme Court nomineeswere largely confirmed eitherin an almost unanimous roll call or even by voice vote. This lax-attitude coincided with the Supreme Court largely refraining from major policy intervention except in the most clear-cut Constitutional and legal cases.
When we think of how even a solid and experienced nominee like now-Justice Neil Gorsuch was only confirmed in a divisive 54-45 vote, that three of President Ronald Reagan’s nominees were confirmed 99-0, 98-0, and 97-0 almost seems surreal.
An immense irony is that previously the filibuster, which could have stopped Justice Gorsuch’s nomination and Justice Kennedy’s replacement, was a cultural norm in the Senate until Democrats did away with it in 2013.
To be fair, it is worth noting that in 2013 Congressional Republicans were holding up dozens of lower court nominations through what one could argue was less adherence to investigatory processes but rather more of a political power-play.
In the meantime other occasionally followed practices, such as the “Biden Rule” fornot having confirmationsin key election years, have been thrown to the wayside slowly bit-by-bit as well.
While all these rules were once part of the webbing that kept our legislative branch collegial and functional now they too are seemingly a relic of the past amid our politically contentious national climate.
As the nominations process begins to move forward for Justice Kennedy’s replacement, both sides will be rolling out bumper-sticker arguments that belie the immense historical, legal, and political complexity of the role of the Supreme Court in American society and the process of filling and checking it.
Given the reality of human nature, it can be expected that we will always have a level of partisanship and politics in even those institutions that are theoretically impartial and above the fray.
Nonetheless, that doesn’t mean we should do our best to try to create neutral grounds and keep the policy battles where they belong. The alternative – of politicized institutions, such as the IRS scandal – has already created immense distaste and polarization among the American people.
Though the Supreme Court is just one piece of our government, it is an essential one with major impact across our entire society, as we’ve especially seen in recent years. The nomination of another constitutionally minded Justice will do a long way in restoring the Court’s proper role and nature, but the broader and longer-term view is important as well and we, the American people, have a key role and duty in determining it.
Bill Maher has a bad case of Trump derangement syndrome.
On Friday’s broadcast of HBO’s “Real Time,” host Bill Maher stated he doesn’t know if Democrats will ever win another election because President Trump “is going to go when he wants to go, and that includes losing the 2020 election.”
Maher said, “The mistake was made by letting him become president. You know, I’ve seen this in so many thriller movies, where the hero…says to the civilian that gets mixed up in the whole mess, look, some people will approach you. They’ll have suits and badges. They’ll look very official, and they’ll say, ‘Get in the car with us.’ Don’t ever get in the car. Because once you do that, you have no options, and that’s it, you’re dead. And we got in the car with Donald Trump. And once we’re in the car, we don’t have any — we’re not going to win the Supreme Court pick. I don’t know if we’re ever going to win another election, because I keep saying, and I truly believe, he is going to go when he wants to go, and that includes losing the 2020 election.”
Edward “Easy Eddie,” J. O’Hare made a deal with the feds to help put Al Capone in prison so his son could get into the Naval Academy and it cost him his life.
U.S. Navy Lieutenant Edward “Butch” O’Hare holds the distinction of being the first Naval Aviator to be awarded the Medal of Honor—the United States’ highest military honor—during World War II. His accomplishments as a fighter pilot are incredible in their own right. However, there are a plethora of story lines regarding this modest, unassuming young hero.
Have you ever read between the lines of a Medal of Honor citation, and wondered just what the recipient was like, and what other details surrounded the heroic action described in the award citation?
The President of the United States in the name of The Congress takes pleasure in presenting the Medal of Honor to O’HARE, EDWARD HENRY
Who exactly was Lieutenant O’Hare?
Rank and Organization: Lieutenant, U.S. Navy. Born: 13 March 1914, St. Louis, Mo. Entered Service at: St. Louis, Mo.
Behind these dry facts figuratively stands a man who was a human like anyone else, though perhaps with a more unique childhood than others. He was the son of Edward “Easy Eddie,” J. O’Hare, a successful lawyer and dog track operator who dabbled in flying airplanes on the side—and who familiarized his teenage son, nicknamed “Butch,” with flying as well.
Unfortunately, as the notorious Al Capone’s former lawyer and business associate turned government witness, Easy Eddie was murdered by unidentified gunmen in 1939.
The younger O’Hare took a much different path in life. He graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 1937, served for two years on the battleship USS New Mexico, and completed Navy flight training in Pensacola, Florida in May 1940. Officially a Naval Aviator, Ensign O’Hare was ordered to Fighter Squadron Three (VF-3) aboard USSSaratoga, which was based in San Diego, California.
The next twenty months were eventful for Butch. During that time, VF-3 bounced fromSaratoga, to USS Enterprise, back to Saratoga, and finally was reassigned to USSLexington after the United States entered World War II and Saratoga was damaged by a Japanese torpedo. Butch, meanwhile, made a name for himself as a gifted aviator and marksman, and by January 1942 he had received a temporary promotion to Lieutenant.
His commanding officer, John Thach, said of him,
“He had a sense of timing and relative motion that he may have been born with, but also he had that competitive spirit. When he got into any kind of a fight like this, he didn’t want to lose….When he first got to the squadron he studied all the documents that we had on aerial combat, and he just picked it up much faster than anyone else I’ve ever seen. He got the most out of his airplane.”
Other Navy awards: Navy Cross, Distinguished Flying Cross with 1 gold star.
Butch received these three awards after his Medal of Honor: the Distinguished Flying Crosses in August and October 1943, and the Navy Cross posthumously, because in the face of an imminent Japanese attack on Lexington’s task group near Tarawa, Butch “personally organized and voluntarily led the first night fighter section of aircraft to operate from a carrier, at night, against enemy aircraft, although he well knew the hazard involved.”
Hazardous indeed, for Butch never returned from that night mission in November 1943.
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in aerial combat, at grave risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty, as section leader and pilot of Fighting Squadron 3 on 20 February 1942. Having lost the assistance of his teammates,
According to John Thach, Lexington only launched a handful of planes, including his own, when the first formation of enemy bombers approached. Thach ordered Butch and his wingman, along with some others, to stay near Lexington as combat air patrol, while Thach’s group went to investigate where the Japanese planes had come from and hopefully intercept any others.
Obviously, they missed the second wave of incoming bombers. Of the pilots left behind, all but Butch and his wingman were too far away to intercept the Japanese before they would get within bombing distance of Lexington.
Lt. O’Hare interposed his plane between his ship and an advancing enemy formation of 9 attacking twin-engine heavy bombers.
The Japanese planes were Mitsubishi G4M Navy Type 1 Attack Bombers, code-named “Betty” by the Allies, and were actually medium bombers. They were land-based, long-range aircraft that could carry over 2,000 pounds of bombs each. Nine of them were bad news for Lexington.
Without hesitation, alone and unaided, he repeatedly attacked this enemy formation, at close range in the face of intense combined machinegun and cannon fire.
Butch and his wingman were the only ones close enough to try to stop the Japanese in time—but the wingman’s machine guns all jammed at that crucial moment. Butch’s Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat fighter was now the sole aircraft “in the right place, at the right time” that was able to immediately defend the carrier.
Butch had four .50 caliber Browning machine guns with which to shoot at the approaching bombers, but as the sole occupant of his plane, he had to fly and shoot. The Bettys, by contrast, were manned by a crew of seven men, and were each armed with three 7.7mm machine guns as well as a 20mm “cannon”, all operated manually by separate gunners. Four guns against thirty-six: talk about overwhelming odds!
Despite this concentrated opposition, Lt. O’Hare, by his gallant and courageous action, his extremely skillful marksmanship in making the most of every shot of his limited amount of ammunition, shot down 5 enemy bombers and severely damaged a sixth before they reached the bomb release point.
The Browning AN/M2 machine guns in Butch’s Wildcat were capable of holding 450 rounds each, enough for only 30-40 seconds of continuous fire, and he had nine targets! His marksmanship skills served him well as he shot down five bombers so quickly and effectively that eyewitnesses reported watching three of them fall simultaneously. The remaining bombers failed to land any hits on the carrier.
As a result of his gallant action—one of the most daring, if not the most daring, single action in the history of combat aviation—he undoubtedly saved his carrier from serious damage.
There is little doubt that Butch O’Hare’s heroic actions ensured that Lexington lived to fight another day, but what he did would also have a larger and more significant impact on the nation as a whole.
Twenty-one years later, while giving a speech to re-dedicate the naming of Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport in Butch’s honor, President John F. Kennedy summarized that impact:
“I remember as a young naval officer myself how the extraordinary feat of “Butch” O’Hare captured the imagination not only of our Armed Forces but also of the country.
His extraordinary act in protecting his ship…while he was alone, shooting down five of the enemy, during difficult days in the Second War, gave this country hope and confidence not only in the quality and caliber of our fighting men, but also in the certainty of victory.”
Undoubtedly, the Second World War has always been a favorite subject for movies. Many actors have played in war films, everyone from John Wayne to Tom Hanks.
During the war, many Hollywood actors served their country with distinction, at home and in combat, men like James Stewart, Clark Gable, and a host of others. But Audie Murphy was more than just a Hollywood star—he was one of the most decorated American soldiers of World War II.
Perhaps the best part of the story with Murphy is the fact that he was admittedly flawed in many ways just like the rest of us. His story is not one of a shooting star, but rather one of endeavoring through the highs and lows in life while rising to the occasion when needed.
Audie Murphy’s Early Life
Audie Leon Murphy was born on June 20, 1924, son of poor Texas sharecroppers. The Depression hit the family hard, and Audie once recalled that the family lived in an “honest to goodness shack.” His father abandoned the family, and when Audie was 17 his mother died. That left him the sole support of 10 siblings. To supplement the family’s meager rations, Audie would hunt rabbits, using a slingshot when he couldn’t afford shells for his rifle.
Audie Murphy in World War II
Audie joined the army and became a member of the Third Infantry Division. He took part in some of the bloodiest and most decisive actions of the war. Murphy saw combat in Sicily in 1943 and later took part in the ill-fated Anzio operation.
In 1944 the Third Division invaded southern France in support of the more famous D-Day Normandy invasion further north. There was much hard fighting, and Audie had risen to sergeant. Later, he was to get a battlefield commission as a Second Lieutenant.
Murphy’s most heroic moment occurred on January 26, 1945, in the so-called Colmar Pocket of eastern France. Suddenly, Murphy’s company was confronted with a massive German attack, spearheaded by six tanks. In spite of German heavy fire, Murphy stayed at his post as an artillery spotter, calling in enemy positions over a field telephone.
The crisis of the fight was now at hand. An American tank was hit, the crew escaping as flames leaped up from its steel frame. As the Germans surged forward, Murphy jumped on the burning wreck and manned its .50 caliber machine gun. Murphy remained on the burning tank for nearly an hour, holding the Germans at bay in spite of a bad leg wound and heavy enemy fire. When the Germans finally broke off their assault, Murphy hobbled over to his men and led a counterattack.
Murphy was one of the most decorated American soldiers of the war. He was credited with killing over 240 of the enemy while wounding and capturing many others. He was honored with 33 medals and decorations, including 5 from France and Belgium. Murphy was also awarded the Medal of Honor.
Audie Murphy, Hollywood Movie Star
After the war, famed actor Jimmy Cagney spotted Murphy on the cover of Life Magazine and asked him to come to Hollywood. Cagney tried to help his career but the first few years in Hollywood were failures. He became disillusioned and ended up sleeping in a men’s gym.
But things picked up. In 1950 he starred in Bad Boy and got a contract from Universal-International Studios. Earlier, he had written a movie about his war exploits called To Hell and Back. Universal made it into a popular movie in 1955. Murphy starred in the film, though he was reluctant to do so.
Over the next 20 years or so Audie made 26 Hollywood films, most of them westerns. Two examples are Red Badge of Courage (1951), directed by John Huston, and The Unforgiven (1960), with Burt Lancaster and Audrey Hepburn. He was married twice, the first time to Hollywood actress Wanda Hendrix.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
Murphy was a genuine hero, but fame came at a price. He suffered from insomnia and depression, had “flashbacks” of combat, and was often moody and dangerous. If you caught him during one of his “down” periods, he might confront you with a loaded gun. The actor was suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
It was poorly understood at the time, and often covered up. Murphy courageously went public with his mental and emotional state, urging Congress to fund more research and help for war veterans who suffer from the condition.
Audie Murphy’s Last Years
Murphy owned a horse ranch and was a successful racehorse owner and breeder. He was a gambler, too, and won and lost several fortunes during his life. Audie wrote poetry and was a successful songwriter.
On Memorial Day, 1971 (May 28, 1971) Audie Murphy was killed at the age of 46. He was a passenger in a private plane that encountered fog and rain and crashed into a mountain. We should continue to remember Murphy not as a story of the “perfect” guy, but rather the guy who was a genuine personality and easy to like and who stepped up to the plate when called.
In Spite of what the left thinks ICE is a deportation force and not the welcome wagon for illegals.
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D., N.Y.) called Thursday night to disband U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
CNN host Chris Cuomo asked Gillibrand about Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who beat incumbent Rep. Joe Crowley (D., N.Y.) in the 14th Congressional District primary, and her controversial position to disband the law enforcement agency.
“She’s also got some positions that are even to the left of Bernie Sanders. She wants to get rid of ICE,” Cuomo said. “Now, what are you going to do with your party if you do come into a majority and you have a significant number, or at least an influence of people who have that kind of a position?”
“Well, I agree with it. I don’t think ICE today is working as intended,” Gillibrand said.
“You think you should get rid of the agency?” Cuomo asked.
“I believe that it has become a deportation force and I think you should separate out the criminal justice from the immigration issues and I think you should reimagine ICE under a new agency with a very different mission and take those two missions out,” Gillibrand said.
She went on to argue the U.S. should replace ICE with “something that actually works.”
“So we believe that we should protect families that need our help and that is not what ICE is doing today,” Gillibrand said, “and that’s why I believe you should get rid of it, start over, reimagine it, and build something that actually works.”
ICE is a component of the Department of Homeland Security and has been criticized by many liberals – particularly under the Trump administration – for managing the deportation of those who are ordered to leave the country. Rep. Mark Pocan (D., Wis.) announced Monday he was introducing a bill to abolish the agency.
Cynthia Nixon, another New York progressive who is challenging Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D., N.Y.) in his bid for re-election, recently referred to ICE as a “terrorist organization.”
Society has spiraled down to the point if it is perverse it is acceptable but anything morale is bad.
Robert De Niro, the actor, aimed the f-bomb at President Donald Trump in remarks to a large audience at the Tony Awards. Following an appreciative applause, he repeated it and got a standing ovation. Samantha Bee, the television comedian, used the even more vulgar c-word to describe the president’s daughter Ivanka Trump.
Well, they’re only words, some people say.
“The problem with Robert De Niro’s using the F-word against President Tump isn’t the word itself,” writes Christine Emba in the Washington Post, “it’s the absence of underlying content.” But the obscenities are the only “underlying content.” Bee’s audience, which gave her a rousing cheer, got the message loud and clear. It loved it.
Comedian Dennis Miller told an interviewer that when he watches De Niro splattering his public with political obscenities, he turns around, looks over his shoulder and mimics the actor’s psychopathic character in the movie “Taxi Driver,” saying: “You talkin’ to me? You talkin’ to me?”
Many of us are asking that question now, extending it to the terrible things other people are doing and saying in these polarized and angry times. There’s a reach for rudeness, amplified by cellphones and everywhere else on social media.
Miller, a former “Saturday Night Live” cast member, may be an ironic person to critique the increasing vulgarity of the culture. But like growing numbers of the rest of us, both red and blue, he regards the vulgarity as a tragic state of affairs. Ugly words and ugly public behavior bombard the public consciousness, conspicuously in politics but in art and entertainment as well. It’s impossible to rise above the antagonistic and the disputatious, to escape the anger that begets blind hate and mindless rage. Can violence be far behind?But mindlessness requires mindfulness. Classes in mindfulness are proliferating because they teach how to focus on the intellectually important. That’s evermore difficult to do. There’re a new opera, new as in a revival of the old, entertaining audiences in the nation’s capital. It’s called “The Emperor of Atlantis, or Death Goes on Strike,” reprised for reflection and entertainment, in which it succeeds in part. But in revival it succumbs to the director’s conceit to compare Donald Trump to Adolf Hitler. The opera was written in 1943 by Viktor Ullmann, a Czech Jew, when he was a prisoner at the Theresienstadt death camp, shortly before he was transferred to Auschwitz to be murdered by the Nazis. The opera has a heavy drumbeat meant to represent a brutalized environment. The director updates the central character, originally a parody of Hitler, to a dictator obsessed with his country’s borders, with jarring references to “fake news” and “You’re fired.” This reduces serious philosophical questions to social media cliches.
It’s popular in certain precincts to compare the president with Hitler and the Holocaust, and it’s what historian Jay Winik, writing in The Wall Street Journal, calls an “obscene lie.” When Michael Hayden, former director of the CIA, compared immigrant detention centers to Auschwitz and tweeted the infamous photograph of the single-rail line into Auschwitz, civil liberties lawyer Alan Dershowitz called out Hayden’s remarks as “Holocaust denial.” It was a cruel and stupid analogy to the place where more than a million Jews, including many children, were sent to “showers” of poison gas.
Former Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan observed how there’s a limit to how much bad behavior can saturate a society before it lowers standards for everybody. He called it “defining deviancy down,” saying: “when you get too much, you begin to think that it’s not really that bad. Pretty soon you become accustomed to very destructive behavior.”
That’s where we are now, with a government official asked to leave a restaurant because the owner doesn’t like her boss and a member of Congress urging her constituents to organize a mob to harass conservatives — “And if you see anybody from that Cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station … you push back on them. And you tell them they’re not welcome anymore, anywhere.”
Some Democrats are alarmed, not necessarily because such vigilante rhetoric is wrong but because it’s a risky political strategy with the midterm elections looming just ahead. They’re concerned that Rep. Maxine Waters is not the image of the party they want to project in the months leading to Nov. 6. “Confirmation bias” is insidiously at work, enabling Waters and her angry look-alikes to be that party image, no matter how outrageous and disabling.
Just the other day, a 21-year-old congressional intern to Democratic Sen. Maggie Hassan of New Hampshire sent an f-bomb sailing toward the president as he walked past her through the Capitol rotunda. She was suspended for only a week, and Sen. Hassan said she would keep her job. That’s what Daniel Patrick Moynihan called “defining deviancy down.”
Can Jeff Sessions as Attorney General order these files released?
Paul Sperry reports at RealClearInvestigations — the investigative reporting affiliate of trusted polling aggregator RealClearPolitics — that the FBI is refusing to allow members of Congress to review intelligence that alleges Obama Attorney General Loretta Lynch interfered in the Hillary Clinton email investigation:
The FBI had little problem leaking “unverified” dirt from Russian sources on Donald Trump and his campaign aides – and even basing FISA wiretaps on it. But according to the Justice Department’s inspector general, the bureau is refusing to allow even members of Congress with top security clearance to see intercepted material alleging political interference by President Obama’s attorney general, Loretta Lynch.
That material – which has been outlined in press reports – consists of unverified accounts intercepted from putative Russian sources in which the head of the Democratic National Committee allegedly implicates the Hillary Clinton campaign and Lynch in a secret deal to fix the Clinton email investigation.
It is remarkable how this Justice Department is protecting the corruption of the Obama Justice Department,” said Tom Fitton, president of Washington-based watchdog Judicial Watch, which is suing for the material.