December 13, 2017

About Last Night …

Filed under: Taxes & Government — Tom @ 8:45 am

Since the 24-hour power outage I was rooting for in Alabama last night didn’t occur, I have to make a few points about the U.S. Senate race result there.

First, though having a narrower GOP majority in the Senate is not comforting, it’s a relief that the out-of-touch quote machine known as Roy Moore won’t be in the Senate.

Second, those in the press’s phony scandal machine will unfortunately feel empowered, because they certainly feel that they deserve credit for stopping Moore. They already felt that way, so the real message here is that the center-right’s truth-tellers still don’t have enough clout to offset them in tight races.

Third, and by the far the most important point: Trump fans who are resting on their laurels believing that he has the upper hand in influencing the upcoming congressional and Senate elections, or, further down the road, ensuring his own reelection, are forgetting one very important thing: His November 2016 victory was at least as much due to the electorate’s utter disdain for Hillary Clinton, who conducted the worst presidential campaign in memory, as it was his willingness to fight through adversity.

This shouldn’t be news to Trump supporters, but it apparently is. 11 months, and 35 months, are both eternities in politics. But the fact is that a somewhat likable Democrat with relatively few negatives in his or her past history would beat Donald Trump for reelection if the contest were held today.

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UPDATE: To be clear, in hindsight, Trump was the only GOP candidate who could have won in 2016 against the Clinton and a media machine (and deep state) determined to push her over the finish line. But that was then, and this is now.

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Wednesday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (121317)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 6:00 am

This open thread is meant for commenters to post on items either briefly noted below (if any) or otherwise not covered at this blog. Rules are here.

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Positivity: He saved 6 men at Pearl Harbor. Finally, 76 years later, he’s being honored

Filed under: Positivity,US & Allied Military — Tom @ 5:55 am

From Honolulu, Hawaii:

December 12, 2017

Strangers who heard the story said it. The men he saved said it.

But for more than seven decades, no one could make it happen.

The Navy commended George for his actions and noted them in his record. For a medal, the Navy wanted an eyewitness account of the incident, corroboration from a senior officer who was aboard the USS Vestal with George on Dec. 7, 1941. Neither could be found.

And there was a hitch in the story: George, a boatswain’s mate second class, disobeyed an order to cut the line between the Vestal, a maintenance ship, and the Arizona. He had spotted the six desperate men on the burning battleship and threw a line to them, ignoring the order to cast off.

The failure to follow orders seemed to stand in the way of George’s medal.

George died in 1996. A few years later, the son of one of the men George rescued took up the cause of the medal.

He called. He wrote letters. He enlisted other Pearl Harbor survivors. He tracked down George’s family and promised George’s widow he would fight to secure recognition for the man who had saved his dad’s life.

George’s daughter, Joe Ann Taylor, joined the campaign. They took it all the way to the White House.

And they did it. On Thursday, a Navy admiral will present Taylor a Bronze Star Medal for Valor, recognizing George posthumously. The ceremony will take place aboard the USS Arizona Memorial in Pearl Harbor, yards from where the story began. …

Go here for the rest of the story.

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Jim Acosta Follows Press Tradition: Harass GOP Presidents, Go Easy on Dems

CNN’s insufferably self-important Jim Acosta made the news all about himself once again on Tuesday. This time, as reported by Randy Hall at NewsBusters, following in the footsteps of ABC’s detestable Sam Donaldson during the Reagan administration, Acosta, despite being warned not to, interrupted a bill-signing ceremony to shout out a question at President Donald Trump. Acosta’s press cohorts clearly aren’t objecting to his conduct, which is in sharp contrast to how they treated a reporter for a center-right outlet in 2012 when Democrat Barack Obama was in the Oval Office.

(more…)

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December 12, 2017

California Aborted Baby Parts Sellers Shut Down; The View’s Whoopi Goldberg and Joy Behar Hardest Hit

In November 2015, Whoopi Goldberg and Joy Behar at The View rudely shut down then-presidential candidate Carly Fiorina, insisting that she was lying when she stated that Planned Parenthood had admitted to harvesting baby parts from aborted fetuses. On Friday, in a development which is predictably failing to get the media visibility it deserves, Orange County’s district attorney announced a $7.8 million settlement with two California companies accused of “selling fetal-derived cells and tissues” obtained from fetal body parts acquired from Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers. When will ABC demand that Whoopi and Joy apologize to Fiorina — and to the nation?

(more…)

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Tuesday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (121217)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 6:00 am

This open thread is meant for commenters to post on items either briefly noted below (if any) or otherwise not covered at this blog. Rules are here.

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Positivity: 85-year-old man shoots, kills home intruder

Filed under: 2nd Amendment,Positivity — Tom @ 5:55 am

From Ellport, Pennsylvania (videos at link; HT Right Scoop):

Updated: Dec 8, 2017 – 4:53 PM

An elderly man shot and killed one of two intruders at his home early Friday morning in Ellport, Lawrence County, police said.

The 85-year-old man, Don Lutz, was confronted by the intruders about 1:30 a.m. at his Jamison Avenue home, authorities said. An altercation followed.

“I just fired one. It was in the dark. He attacked me and he was up close and I shot him,” Lutz said. “They jumped me and we both went on the floor. I scuffled with them on the floor and the one guy rolled over dead and the other guy, he jumped up and went out the door.”

Police are searching for the second intruder who ran off.

“The other one, maybe the bullet hit him, too. I don’t know. I hope so,” Lutz said.

Lutz said he keeps his gun under his pillow and was in bed when the intruders broke through his front door.

“I ran into this guy. He grabbed me and the bullet went through his chest, went clean through him. The other guy must have been behind him,” Lutz said.

Police couldn’t find the bullet, which they said might have hit the second intruder. …

Go here for the rest of the story.

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December 11, 2017

CNN: Never Mind About That Jeff Sessions Russian Contact Disclosure Issue

In May, the establishment press went into overdrive after learning that Attorney General Jeff Sessions didn’t disclose two 2016 contacts with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak on his disclosure forms applying for security clearance. On Monday, based on “a newly released document,” the network reported that Sessions was accurately told that the disclosures weren’t required, because those meetings were connected with his Senate duties. In other words, seven months later, the network finally said: “Oops. Never mind.”

(more…)

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Santelli Channels Blumer? Brings Up Not Seasonally Adjusted Jobs Numbers

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 6:30 am

Obviously, I’m kidding with the title, but it’s gratifying (and long overdue) to finally see somebody mention that the topline “jobs number,” which the press doesn’t even describe as “seasonally adjusted” (example here), is a result of smoothing out actual data on jobs added or lost to factor in “seasonality.”

CNBC’s Rick Santelli, in the first 90 seconds of the video seen below, is the first person I’ve seen in almost 13 years of blogging who has thought it worthwhile to talk about the raw data — something which should be obvious but is almost universally ignored.

As Santelli stated, and as yours truly has noted repeatedly, looking at the raw data is important. As I also observed on Friday, in November’s case, it was, in Santelli’s words, “even more impressive than the seasonally adjusted data”:

Santelli mentioned three strong not seasonally adjusted (i.e., actual) numbers (all three can be verified here by comparing the figures in the Not Seasonally Adjusted section of the table for October and November):

  • +532,000 total nonfarm jobs
  • +420,000 private-sector jobs
  • +451,000 retail jobs

On Friday, I noted that the raw total nonfarm figure was the highest number since 2005, and that the private-sector figure was the highest since 1945 (obviously not adjusted for population), and that the underlying strength of those figures was about 100,000 jobs stronger than the seasonally adjusted figures (228K and 221K, respectively) would indicate.

The retail figure Santelli cited means that most of the 117K improvement over last year’s actual private sector was in that segment alone (92K).

That may be reason to curb the enthusiasm if one thinks that the retail jobs being added will almost all disappear as usual after the Christmas shopping season ends. On the other hand, a stronger economy may finally be filtering down to the retail sector and leading to job growth there in 2018 — or at the very least slowing down the bleeding.

We’ll see.

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Monday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (121117)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 6:00 am

This open thread is meant for commenters to post on items either briefly noted below (if any) or otherwise not covered at this blog. Rules are here.

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Positivity: National Anthem at 2017 Army-Navy Game

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 5:55 am

Moving:

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December 10, 2017

Has the New York Times Made Gloria Steinem’s Original 1998 Defense of Bill Clinton Disappear?

The Associated Press’s failure to report Gloria Steinem’s Wednesday howler about how Donald Trump supposedly “lost” the 2016 presidential election “by 10 million votes” which I noted in a Sunday NewsBusters post is consistent with the press’s history of preventing leftists’ most provocative and controversial statements from becoming widely known. The press considers Steinem a feminist “icon,” and thus especially worthy of protection. In preparing that post, I discovered that the New York Times appears to have taken their protection of Steinem to an unusual level.

(more…)

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Press Mostly Ignores Gloria Steinem’s Howler: ‘Trump Lost by 10 Million Votes’

At the Massachusetts Conference for Women on Wednesday, so-called “feminist icon” and late-1990s Bill Clinton apologist and enabler Gloria Steinem made a big deal out the fact that she never has and never will call Donald Trump “president” — to her, he’s the “harasser in chief” — while claiming that Trump “lost” last year’s general election by “10 million votes.” The vast majority of the establishment press is ignoring Steinem’s virtually illiterate remark. In one noteworthy instance, the Associated Press either ignored the obviously noteworthy “10 million votes” claim or deleted it in a subsequent revision to an earlier report.

(more…)

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Sunday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (121017)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 6:00 am

This open thread is meant for commenters to post on items either briefly noted below (if any) or otherwise not covered at this blog. Rules are here.

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Positivity: ‘Crown Jewel’ of nation’s basilica blessed in DC

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 5:55 am

From Washington (video at link):

Dec 8, 2017 / 05:01 pm

With the blessing of its final mosaic, America’s Basilica – The National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C. – is finally complete after nearly a century of construction and adornment.

“This magnificent tribute in stone, glass, marble mosaic to Mary, Mother of Jesus, Mother of God and our Mother, invites all of us to recognize not only the special role of Mary in our life but the unique glory that is hers in her Immaculate Conception,” said Cardinal Donald Wuerl of Washington in his Dec. 8 homily before the dedication of the basilica’s new Trinity Dome mosaic.

Cardinal Wuerl blessed the dome with incense during Mass for the feast of the Immaculate Conception. Cardinal Kevin Farrell, prefect of the Dicastery for the Laity, Family and Life attended the dedication as an envoy on behalf of Pope Francis and presented the cardinal and the rector of the Basilica, Msgr. Walter Rossi, with a letter of Apostolic Blessing from the Pope for the blessing.

The new dome and its mosaic, which depicts the Trinity, Mary, and nearly twenty saints and blessed who share a connection with either the Americas or the National Shrine itself, is the capstone which finishes 97 years of construction and decoration of the Basilica and its interior. Five cardinals, 23 bishops, nearly 90 priests, and over 4,000 people gathered to celebrate the event. Also present at the event were Cardinal Daniel DiNardo of Galveston-Houston, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, and U.S. Ambassador to the Vatican Callista Gingrich.

Go here for the rest of the story.

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