Good morning, everyone!
1. President Trump is upset about an ABC-Washington Post poll that among other things indicates that 70% of those polled believe that he has acted “un-Presidential” since being elected. Several analysts have suggested that pollsters have slanted their polling pools toward Democrats (remember the election?), but my question regarding this poll is, “What the hell is the matter with the other 30%?”
How in the world could anyone conscious argue that Trump is “Presidential,” other than on the rather technical basis that since he’s President, what he does is by definition Presidential? It would be mighty nice if an aide, a Cabinet member, a daughter, a White House chef or someone would explain this to him, but I’m convinced: he doesn’t get it, he won’t get it, and what weve seen is what we’ll continue to get.
2. ALERT! The forgoing was written after I was fooled by a fake news site, aided and abetted by Instapundit, which either was also fooled or linked to the site as its own joke. Thanks to reader Tom Adams for being more alert than I was and quickly flagging this.
And by the way, screw them. I’m taking off the link, and I will probably give the site an Unethical Website designation. The only hint that the site is a hoax site is the other stories (“GOP Adopts Christie’s Sad, Bewildered Face As New Party Mascot”), but I read dozens of stories every day, and if i stopped to check all the other boxed and highlighted pieces I would never have time to do my job. There is nothing on the home page designating the site as satirical. Unethical.
I apologize to anyone I led astray. Somebody alert Instapundit. I’m not speaking to it. Here was the original post…
That said and mournfully accepted, he won, he’s President, and the fevered efforts to somehow turn back time (I would not be surprised to see a new Bon Jovi Direct TV ad on the subject) by “the resistance,” the Democrats and the news media are profoundly anti-democratic. This is what Jake Tapper was alluding last week with his tongue stuck so firmly in his cheek that it almost broke through his face. “The conspiracy goes much deeper than anyone expected,” Jake Tapper said on his news segment “The Lead.” “We’re talking tens of millions of people involved in this secret plot to make sure Hillary didn’t make it into the White House and to prop up Donald Trump as the winner….It’s far more sinister than we thought.”
Yes, some conservative websites and others took Tapper’s pointed gag seriously. This tells us…
…how little trust CNN has left with many Americans..
…how dumb a lot of conservatives are…
…why broadcast news hosts and reporters, even fair and clever ones like Tapper, should avoid sarcasm, satire, or facetious statements, and stick to the facts.
…Jake Tapper should get away from CNN before its toxic culture ruins his reputation.
3. As was long rumored, the new Doctor Who is a woman, and this has caused a predictable uproar among the incredibly long-running sci-fi show’s fans. Since I upset some people yesterday by saying that the new Spiderman movie was grandstanding (also pandering and virtue-signaling, though I didn’t say that) by being ostentatiously and distractingly diverse, let me say that a female Doctor Who makes sense, is timely, opens up interesting dramatic possibilities and that I’m shocked that this casting switch took so long. If I were immortal and traveling through time switching bodies, I’m pretty sure that I would eventually try out a female version just out of boredom and curiosity. Is the “Doctor Who” stunt also grandstanding, pandering and virtue-signaling, since transgender individuals are the latest “in” minority? Sure. As is not the case with the new Spiderman film’s scenes resembling an EEOC training video, however, there are tangible, defensible, entertainment considerations tipping the scales.
4. In a letter to Sen. Patty Murray (D), Secretary of Education Betsey DeVos noted that the department’s civil rights arm under the Obama administration “had descended into a pattern of overreaching, of setting out to punish and embarrass institutions rather than work with them to correct civil rights violations and of ignoring public input prior to issuing new rules.” She said that the agency will not issue any more “Dear colleague” letters that use veiled threats that are de facto “new regulations via administrative fiat.”
DeVos added that the Obama Department of Education OCR’s activism may have been “politically expedient” but it “deprived the public of meaningful opportunities to provide input. At my direction, the department will no longer mask new regulations as Dear Colleague letters and will issue new regulations only after appropriate notice and public comment.”
Excellent. This eliminates any excuse colleges have—though there was never a legitimate excuse—to use a presumed guilty standard against male students accused of sexual assault.
5. When it’s all over, if it’s ever over, the Trump Jr. “attempted collusion” story will at least provide a fascinating insight into which journalists spin harder, the conservative brand or the liberal brand. (Although the comparison is inherently unfair since the former are outnumbered by the latter by a margin of 26-1.) Conservative journalist Byron York argued over the weekend that any campaign would have sought “the motherlode of Clinton emails,” writing…
“The public learned later the lengths to which Clinton went to make sure the “personal” emails were completely and permanently deleted. Her team used a commercial-strength program called BleachBit to erase all traces of the emails, and they used hammers to physically destroy mobile devices that might have had the emails on them. The person who did the actual deleting later cited legal privileges and the Fifth Amendment to avoid talking to the FBI and Congress…It was, as the New York Times’ Mark Landler said in August 2016, the “original sin” of the Clinton email affair — that Clinton herself, and no independent body, unilaterally decided which emails she would hand over to the State Department and which she would delete. Still, there were people who did not believe that Clinton’s deleted emails, all 30,000-plus of them, were truly gone. What is ever truly gone on the Internet? And what if Clinton were not telling the truth? What if she deleted emails covering more than just personal matters? In that event, recovering the emails would have rocked the 2016 presidential campaign. So, if there were an enormous trove of information potentially harmful to a presidential candidate just sitting out there — what opposing campaign wouldn’t want to find it?”
1.This is an “Everybody does it” rationalization, not an ethical defense.
2. Wanting to find the e-mails and knowingly assisting a foreign government’s efforts to tilt the election to do so are not the same thing.
3. Donald Jr. was never told that what “the Russian government lawyer” (which she was not, by the way) had to show him were the “trove” York has described.
4. Nobody ever tried to answer my previous hypothetical, so I’ll try it again, slightly altered:
What if a real representative of the Russian Government contacted the FBI and said that it had acquired the 30,000 missing Hillary e-mails, and offered to hand them over in a meeting, adding that they would “destroy her candidacy! AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!”
Would it be “collusion” for the FBI to accept the e-mail “trove”? If the FBI revealed them (or leaked them), would it be “collusion”?