Ethics Quote Of The Month, Terrifying Thoughts Division: Daniel Greenfield

“The Mueller investigation is about removing President Trump from office and overturning the results of an election. We all know that. But it’s not the first time they’ve done this. The first time a Republican president was elected this century, they said he didn’t really win. The Supreme Court gave him the election. There’s a pattern here. Trump didn’t really win the election. Bush didn’t really win the election. Every time a Republican president won an election this century, the Democrats insist he didn’t really win. Now say a third Republican president wins an election in say, 2024. What are the odds that they’ll say that he didn’t really win? Right now, it looks like 100 percent. What do sure odds of the Dems rejecting the next Republican president really mean? It means they don’t accept the results of any election that they don’t win.

“It means they don’t believe that transfers of power in this country are determined by elections.

“That’s a civil war.”

—–Writer and journalist Daniel Greenfield in a speech he delivered last week.

Oh-oh.

I don’t want to believe Greenfield is right, though I have written essays noting the same phenomenon, and long before “the resistance” tried to take down Trump. This is essentially the reason I decided late in the 2016 campaign that I could not vote for Clinton even though I would not vote for Trump. Since the election, my analysis has been confirmed, though I spend time each day wrestling to the ground the inevitable conclusion that follows, because I don’t want to believe it, so I don’t. Greenfield, however, declares it outright in his next section, saying,

There’s no shooting. At least not unless you count the attempt to kill a bunch of Republicans at a charity baseball game practice. But the Democrats have rejected our system of government.

This isn’t dissent. It’s not disagreement.

You can hate the other party. You can think they’re the worst thing that ever happened to the country. But then you work harder to win the next election. When you consistently reject the results of elections that you don’t win, what you want is a dictatorship.

Your very own dictatorship.

The only legitimate exercise of power in this country, according to the left, is its own. Whenever Republicans exercise power, it’s inherently illegitimate.

The attacks on Trump show that elections don’t matter to the left.

The effort to hijack the Electoral College, the partisan conduct of the news media, the abandonment of core professional ethics by lawyers, historians, psychologist, ethicists, professors, journalists and judges to undermine Trump, the boycotts of the Inauguration and next the State of the Union, the multiple Big Lie narratives pushed by the press, the unprecedented insults and hostility from popular media, all dominated by the Left, the antifa, the attempts to constrict conservative speech, all of this and more is consistent with Greenstein’s diagnosis. On one side, I see the necessity of resisting his conclusion, to assume good will and citizenship from progressives and Democrats, if only to encourage ethical and responsible conduct by respect and trust. On the other side of the dilemma, the 2016 Post Election Ethics Train Wreck engineered by “the resistance” and their allies has broken my trust, and my respect as well.  I hear my Democratic friends on Facebook spewing hate, bigotry, and intolerance, and getting dozens of “likes.”

If Greenfield’s analysis is wrong, tell me how.

Please.

169 Comments

Filed under Citizenship, Ethics Alarms Award Nominee, Government & Politics, Rights, U.S. Society

169 responses to “Ethics Quote Of The Month, Terrifying Thoughts Division: Daniel Greenfield

  1. Chris

    No, nothing he describes amounts to a “civil war,” and that is hysterical and irresponsible rhetoric.

    But then, that’s exactly what the conspiracy theory site “Zero Hedge” is known for.

    • Again, the equivalent of an ad hominem.attack on a website. I asked about the speech. It is the same speech whether it was published on ZeroHedge or the New York Times.

      • Chris

        The speech is hysterical and irresponsible rhetoric, as I said. The website routinely pushes hysterical and irresponsible rhetoric. The two are related, Jack.

        • I repeat:: the speech would be the same, and I would have posted on it, regardless of the forum. The forum is irrelevant.

          • Chris

            In that case, I expect that the next time you criticize an article from The New York Times, you won’t feel the need to mention that it’s from The New York Times.

            • When I set out to criticize Zerohedge, I’ll cite the net tilt of its work. ZeroHeedge isn’t worth criticizing, Chris, while the Times is the “paper of record” for the whole industry. One of your lousier analogies.

              • Chris

                Jack, I know that if one of your conservative commenters had written exactly what I wrote, with the exception of subbing in “The New York Times” for “Zero Hedge,” you wouldn’t have objected to it. You know it too.

                • Red Pill Ethics

                  Even if he didn’t object, he’s already told you why. One claims to be the standard bearer of truth and is widely and wrongly accepted as such. The other doesn’t. There’s no hypocritical behavior to call and no dangerous societal trend to push back against. Get off it man.

                  • Chris

                    The dangerous societal trend is fake news. The NYT certainly should be held to a higher standard than Zero Hedge, but that doesn’t mean pointing out that it is a conspiracy theory site that often spreads fake news isn’t useful. This should be pointed out any time such a source is cited.

                    • A speech isn’t fake news, Chris. A transcript is fact. There were also no factual misstatements in the speech, just conclusions that you don’t like.

                    • Chris

                      Didn’t say it was. It was hysterical and irresponsible rhetoric, which often goes hand in hand with fake news. That Zero Hedge is an aggregator of both was worth pointing out, in my opinion.

                    • crella

                      It’s useful if the content being offered is fake news. Is this a real speech, or isn’t it? If it’s Greenfield’s words, are they suddenly deemed irrelevant because of what site they’re on?

                    • Chris

                      Crella, if I saw you or anyone else citing an article from InfoWars, I’d let you know it’s a site that claims the Sandy Hook kids weren’t really murdered even if everything in the specific article were factually true. I’d appreciate the same being done for me if I cited an otherwise accurate article from a progressive site that claimed Bush did 9/11, or that was associated with the likes of Louise Mensch. I like to know the credibility of various sources; maybe others find that a distraction, but to me it’s important.

    • It is not irresponsible rhetoric to describe something accurately. Though I think “cold” civil war is more accurate.

      Just like it is accurate and fair to describe the Left-wing media as Enemies of the People.

    • Chris,
      Your comment was just another in a long line of trolling deflections; are you satisfied with the results of this one?

  2. Arthur in Maine

    I’ll take a stab at it, Jack.

    Greenfield is basing his conclusion on an extremely small data set – four elections since the turn of the century. Further, in the two elections in which Republicans won, those Republicans were inarticulate men who succeeded extraordinarily glib Democrats. Both were extremely easy to caricature.

    I don’t disagree that the trend is worrisome, or that there are many on the left whose conclusion to Greenfield’s premise would be anything other than “Yeah? So what?”

    The trendlines certainly aren’t promising. Many kids aren’t trained to understand civics, and we concur that much of the media – if folks are paying attention at all – is force-feeding propaganda. It’s fascinating that at this point in time much of our media is as one-sided as state-controlled media often is, purely on the basis of ideology and free-market forces. That said, I remain far more optimistic on that issue, long term, than you.

    All of that said: it strikes me as both alarmist and specious to draw the conclusion Greenfield drew with so few data points, particularly when other factors are in play. His argument strikes me as a good example of post hoc ergo propter hoc.

    Put another way, would you take a drug wherein the clinical trials were limited to four human tests? Fly on a new design of airliner that had been flown four times?

    Me neither.

    • Chris

      Well said.

      Greenfield also ignores that large portions of the conservative media also claimed that the only Democratic president elected this century was an illegitimate president. Before that fact is dismissed as a mere triviality, remember that the most prominent proponent of that theory is now the President.

      • “Large segment” is nonsense. Of course, the conservative media is a tiny percentage of the media.. Boy, you do cheat when you spin. When Trump was making his birther claims, he was still a registered Democrat. he didn’t speak for Republics or conservatives. Deflect, deflect, deflect.

        • Chris

          “Large segment” is nonsense. Of course, the conservative media is a tiny percentage of the media..

          Ah, so it’s only a “civil war” if it’s a large enough group…perhaps we can call the birthers “insurgents,” then? Or we could just stop using militaristic language to describe people who disagree with you, like “enemy of the American people,” since that’s incredibly reckless and stupid behavior, and as dangerous to our democracy as everything you accuse the Left of.

          Boy, you do cheat when you spin. When Trump was making his birther claims, he was still a registered Democrat. he didn’t speak for Republics or conservatives. Deflect, deflect, deflect.

          I cannot believe you just typed that without a hint of irony. Even if you were right, Trump’s on-paper party affiliation at the time would not change the fact that he was promulgating a conservative conspiracy theory for a conservative audience and using it to propel himself to become a conservative darling and then a Republican president, and pretending that it would makes you guilty of deflection and spin.

          But let’s not even have that argument, because you are not right, because Trump registered as a Republican in 2009, then as an Independent in 2011, the year he began questioning Obama’s birthplace. He was not a registered Democrat at any point while spreading the birther conspiracy theory that Obama was an illegitimate president.

          While we’re at it, if Trump were guilty of colluding with Russia, he still wouldn’t be an illegitimate president–he was still duly elected, and meets the requirements of the presidency. Trump’s theory was that Obama was actually, legally, illegitimate. But by all means, let’s continue to hold him to a lower standard than the Resistance.

          • Again, deflection. I’m sorry I even engaged on the birther irrelevancy. It was discredited from the start, and what Trump did or said before he was in politics doesn’t relate to the issue at hand: the ongoing Democratic refusal to accept the elected President as the elected President, with full complicity of the news media and popular culture, employing violence in the form of the antifa, and seeking, openly, a way to ratioanalize removing the President before the next election. There has been nothing like it in our history, and you want to pretend it’s a fantasy. Has any professor from a prestigious university, ever, a full year after an election, claim that the defeated candidate for President could still become President, like Larry lassig did this month? He ran for the Democratic nomination, if you’ll recall.

            Nah, the Democrats aren’t doing anything different this time…

            • Chris

              Again, deflection. I’m sorry I even engaged on the birther irrelevancy. It was discredited from the start, and what Trump did or said before he was in politics doesn’t relate to the issue at hand:

              You’re counting his role in pushing a political conspiracy theory designed to bring down a president as “before he was in politics?” It was his entry into politics, Jack. (Well, back into. He first ran for president in 2000.)

              And yes, as Greenfield brought up Democrats’ refusal to accept Trump as a legitimate president as proof of a “civil war,” Trump and other conservatives’ previous refusal to accept Obama as a legitimate president is clearly relevant to the issue at hand. Obviously.

              the ongoing Democratic refusal to accept the elected President as the elected President, with full complicity of the news media and popular culture, employing violence in the form of the antifa, and seeking, openly, a way to ratioanalize removing the President before the next election. There has been nothing like it in our history, and you want to pretend it’s a fantasy. Has any professor from a prestigious university, ever, a full year after an election, claim that the defeated candidate for President could still become President, like Larry lassig did this month? He ran for the Democratic nomination, if you’ll recall.

              Nah, the Democrats aren’t doing anything different this time…

              I have joined you in your condemnation of much of this, Jack. I have been very clear about what exactly I’m objecting to about Greenfield’s argument, in nearly every one of my comments, and you keep ignoring it. Tell me, straight-out: do you find the “civil war” conclusion fair, responsible, and accurate?

              • “If Greenfield’s analysis is wrong, tell me how.

                Please.”

                Here’s what Jack actually said.

                You’ve yet to “tell him how” other than an ad hominem against a website and your own characterization that the rhetoric is hyperbolic…but you haven’t addressed a single item of the *analysis* in the Greenfield piece.

                Now, ball’s in your court.

                • Chris

                  There’s no other argument to be made. If you think what we’re seeing right now is a “war” of any kind, you either don’t know what war is, or you’re just careless and irresponsible with your language because you want to demonize your opponent. Neither speaks well of you. “Democrats are fighting a civil war against us” is no better than “Trump is a Nazi” which is no better than “The media is the enemy of the people” which is no better than “Conservatives are all racists.” This is irresponsible partisan hack language.

                  I can’t stop you from being an irresponsible partisan hack, Tex, but I’m hoping I can help Jack before he teeters over that edge. If your sentiments prevail here, then the notion that this is not a partisan blog will no longer become tenable, and I won’t feel comfortable here anymore. I can’t comment on a blog with people who think I’m at war with them.

                  • Chris wrote, “I can’t comment on a blog with people who think I’m at war with them.”

                    Who here in this blog said that you are at war with them? Please be specific Chris.

                    • Chris

                      Am I not part of “the Left?”

                    • Chris wrote, “Am I not part of “the Left?”

                      Well yes Chris you are obviously part of the left. Now stop being an asshole and again stop blowing things way out of proportion with you bull shit hyperbole and follow my very simple instructions.

                      You said, “I can’t comment on a blog with people who think I’m at war with them.”

                      “Who here in this blog said that you are at war with them? Please be specific Chris.”

                    • Chris

                      Well yes Chris you are obviously part of the left. Now stop being an asshole and again stop blowing things way out of proportion with you bull shit hyperbole and follow my very simple instructions.

                      This is quite rich. You and many of the conservatives here are claiming that the Left is engaged in a “civil war” and that the press is “the enemy of the American people,” and I am objecting to these extremist characterizations. And I’m the one blowing things out of proportion and engaging in hyperbole? Get some perspective.

                      Who here in this blog said that you are at war with them? Please be specific Chris.

                      If the Left is at war with you, and if I am part of the Left, then it logically follows that I am at war with you.

                      But I am not at war with you. The Left is not at war with you. Disagreement within a democracy isn’t “war,” even when extreme partisans use dishonest and unethical tactics to express that disagreement.

                    • Chris wrote, “You… are claiming that the Left is engaged in a “civil war”…”

                      I’d like to see you quote me from this thread where I have stated or agrees that we are in a civil war. Go ahead Bucko and give it a try.

                      Personally I think you are a blatant liar; prove me wrong.

                    • Chris,
                      I reject your claim!

                      I agreed that we are in a “cold civil war” NOT just a Civil War.

                      Are you seriously so damned stupid that you think those two phrases mean the same thing PLUS you didn’t see that trap staring you in the face?

                    • Chris

                      You need to calm down and be civil. A “cold civil war” is a type of civil war. We are not experiencing either.

                    • Look up the definition of cold war you idiot.

                    • Chris

                      I regret choosing to try and get along with you, Zoltar. You said we were in a cold civil war, which is by definition a type of civil war; if it wasn’t, you wouldn’t have used those words. Then you pretended–and still pretend–that you never said we were in a civil war. You play these words games often and then you project your trollishness and incivility onto others.

                    • Chris wrote, “I regret choosing to try and get along with you, Zoltar.”

                      Oh climb down from that pompous perch of yours before you fall and hurt yourself.

                      Chris wrote, “You said we were in a cold civil war”

                      Well no Chris, I didn’t actually say that, I agreed with what tex said.

                      Chris wrote, “…which is by definition a type of civil war…”

                      That sir is an intellectually dishonest comment that intentionally ignored the defined differences between cold war and war. Do all teachers ignore the meaning of words like that, or is it just you?

                      Chris wrote, “Then you pretended–and still pretend–that you never said we were in a civil war.”

                      The facts remain consistent that I didn’t say it, I agreed with tex who said it.

                      Chris wrote, “You play these words games often…”

                      Interesting; it appears that that is projection from you, since you are the one playing word games by blatantly ignoring what words actually mean. Gee, where have I heard that complaint about you before?

                      Chris wrote, “…and then you project your trollishness and incivility onto others.”

                      I don’t have to project troll onto you, you wear it with pride.

                      Chris wrote, “…and incivility onto others.”

                      Grow up Chris, you’re in a “kitchen”.

                    • Chris

                      A cold war is a type of war.

                      I believe we are not in any type of war, and that it is irresponsible and dangerous to claim that we are.

                      I am not in any kind of war with you, cold or otherwise.

                      I believe I have been very clear on this.

                    • Chris wrote, “I believe we are not in any type of war…”

                      Then you have either not bothered to read or the definition of cold war or you can’t understand it.

                      To better understand what you mean when you use the word “war”, please define it in your own words, don;t copy and paste some reference you find on the internet. Please note that I am intentionally warning you ahead of time; this is a trap to see if you can define “war” in such a way that it fits all the things you been claiming without contradicting other things you’ve written in this thread. You’ve been warned.

                      There the challenge has been presented, Go for it.

                      Chris wrote, “I am not in any kind of war with you…”

                      (See challenge above)

                      I didn’t say you were; you are the one saying and implying that everyone is claiming you are at war when absolutely no one here has done that. The statements are generalized statements and you are trying to make it as if it’s a personal attack on you.

                    • Chris

                      Please note that I am intentionally warning you ahead of time; this is a trap

                      Oh, how nice of you!

                      Listen, jerk, if you think I am going to respond to a comment that includes the phrase “this is a trap,” you have a massively inflated sense of self-importance. We’re done here. Grow up.

                    • Chris wrote, “…if you think I am going to respond to a comment that includes the phrase “this is a trap,” you have a massively inflated sense of self-importance.”

                      Nope, I don’t have a massively inflated anything Chris, I’m just like everyone else – a human that makes errors, but go ahead and believe that ad hominem if it makes you feel better.

                      I think I know you well enough to say that if you thought you could define “war” without contradicting yourself in other ways, you certainly would have done so.

                      Knowing you through mutual communications we’ve shared, it really was a loose-loose for you and I thought I made that perfectly clear with my “trap” warning. The more appropriate thing to have done would have been not to reply at all. Life is all about choices.

                      Chris wrote, We’re done here.”

                      I’m ok with that.

                  • “There’s no other argument to be made.”

                    No argument you seem able to formulate. But I wouldn’t expect you to try anyway. You don’t like the conclusions. That’s fine. But don’t pretend like they are not valid conclusions while simultaneously refusing to discuss them.

                    “I can’t stop you from being an irresponsible partisan hack, Tex, but I’m hoping I can help Jack before he teeters over that edge.”

                    Chris, as Ethics Alarms’ archetypal partisan hack, you of all should not claim such a ‘noble’ cause…

                    This was laughable.

                    “If your sentiments prevail here, then the notion that this is not a partisan blog will no longer become tenable, and I won’t feel comfortable here anymore. I can’t comment on a blog with people who think I’m at war with them.”

                    There is a distinct probability in the course of history, that objective evaluation will render a conclusion that ONE side of a debate can and does go wildly off the rails. It is self-evident that at this point in time, the left is that side. Many times either or both sides will stray, some more than others. But at this unique and troubling time, it’s undoubtedly the Left that has completely lost its way. That you don’t see this and that you incessantly spin for the Left implies your blinders are too permanently attached.

                    This can still be fixed.

                    Hopefully, you’ll eventually address the man’s speech.

                    • This can still be fixed.

                      I am not so sure. I have too many former conservative fellow travelers who have gone alt right, where they use the tools of progressives against them (quite successfully, I might add) to punish them for decades of foul play.

                      Trump does this as well, and isn’t going to stop and suddenly cultivate decorum, fair play, or ethics. No, this is the season of revenge, of tit-for-tat, of bringing the (fill in the blank progressive position) down, by any means necessary.

                      Many even assert that once the playing field is leveled, once the hypocrites are rebuked, once we MAGA, that they will return to their former ethics, morals, and principles.

                      I do not believe once one starts down that road, one can ever return. Not without extraordinary strength of character and self discipline. This path destroys those very traits, and (imho) makes it impossible to return.

                      So I am not so sure we can fix this, Tex. God knows I hope I am wrong.

                    • I wasn’t clear. You may be right about the unfixability of the extreme polarization we see today, but I meant that Chris’s unwillingness or incapacity to fight his biases and review this situation with some level of objectivity and transcendence.

    • Arthur I agree with the data points point, and the use of the 21st Century as the set is lame. However, if Democrats are acting and sounding like totalitarians, and refusing to accept an elected President as valid, and working to pull a soft coup via impeachment or the 25th Amendament, I don’t need any other data points. Do you?

      But another way, would you get on an airplane that has flown safely 20 times, but had made a structural adjustment, changed pilots and nearly crashed the previous flight?

      Me neither.

      • Chris

        Good lord, impeachment is not a coup, soft or otherwise–stop with the war talk. And Trump is not going to be impeached for anything short of illegal activity.

        • A powerful Democratic House member has been on a speaking tour for months arguing that he should be impeached on general principles. She has not been admonished or rejected by Democratic leadership. Democrats called in an u licensed Yale psychiatrist who has been twice admonished by te rofession to hear her arguments that the 25th amendment should be activated. Do you just ignore events that don’t fit your “Move along, nothing to see here” narrative?

          • Chris

            That those Democrats are behaving unprofessionally, stupidly, unethically, and beneath the dignity of their office is unquestionable.

            They’re still not going to be able to impeach Trump without evidence of a crime.

            Impeaching Trump without evidence of a crime would still not be a “coup.”

            And nothing either he or you described amounts to a “civil war.”

            • The vast majority of Democrats, according to polls, think the President should be impeached now. Why is that, do you think?

              • Chris

                I don’t see how that’s responsive. Thinking things doesn’t make them so. And I thought you didn’t believe in polls? Would you like me to start citing all the polls about the stupid things Republicans believe?

          • charlesgreen

            And a GOP committee chair has been hyping hysterical conspiracy theories about our important institutions that get flamed in Fox News. The House has idiots on both sides. I call that a draw.

            • charlesgreen wrote, “And a GOP committee chair has been hyping hysterical conspiracy theories about our important institutions that get flamed in Fox News.”

              What?

              • Rusty Rebar

                I think he is saying that although it is perfectly fine for MSNBC (and their ilk) to air an entire year and a half of nothing but rumors and leaks that have time and time again proven to be either blatantly false or misleading in the extreme, as soon as a Republican brings something up that is covered on Fox news it is immediately to be taken as a conspiracy theory deserving no coverage — because republican amiright?.

                • Rusty Rebar,
                  Stop trying to speak for Charles, he’s quite capable of speaking for himself.

                  I want to know both the who is hyping and what conspiracy theory is being hyped related to this statement “committee chair has been hyping hysterical conspiracy theories about our important institutions”?

                  I really don’t give a shit about the “get flamed in Fox News” because absolutely every news outlet is flaming absolutely everything.
                  Hell, 20 hours after an “event” has already happened and it’s been allover the news all day these dorks are still saying it “Breaking News” as if it just happened.

      • The data set isn’t small.

        So we’re considering the outright rejection of the Republic in a handful of elections.

        Add to that the Universities.

        Add to that the Media.

        Add to that Big Business in bed with the Democrats

        Add to that Big Law in bed with the Democrats.

        The data set grows.

    • Greg

      those Republicans were inarticulate men who succeeded extraordinarily glib Democrats

      BTW, does anybody else think that Bush seems to have become much more articulate since he left office? Every time I’ve seen him interviewed, he’s relaxed, funny, well-spoken — not as glib as Clinton or Obama, but a very effective communicator. Was he that good as president and we just didn’t notice.

      • Emily

        This is somewhat off topic, but I think it bears saying: George W. was the private-school-and-Yale educated son of a president. He was a bluest of blue blood yankee who come up through Texas politics. He managed to make opponents underestimate (or “misunderestimate” him) and voters see him as a regular guy.

        W was not a stupid man. He just played one as a politician.

      • Arthur in Maine

        BTW, does anybody else think that Bush seems to have become much more articulate since he left office? Every time I’ve seen him interviewed, he’s relaxed, funny, well-spoken…

        That’s an easy one, Greg. Comparable things were said about Bob Dole and, more recently, Hillary Clinton.

        The goal of any politician is to first gain, then maintain, high office. In order to do so, they attempt to attract approval from the largest possible number of people while gaining disapproval from the smallest possible number. Given the ferocity with which opponents and their fellow-travelers in media circles pounce, the net result is often extremely careful, stiff and sometimes stilted responses to questions.

        Since I started paying attention to politics in the early 1970s, I can think of only two presidents who were truly gifted as communicators. Reagan was the first, and Bill Clinton made Reagan look like a piker. Clinton’s charisma, bad-boy charm and extraordinary ability to bullshit made him a once-in-a-century political rhetorician (whatever else you might think of him).

        Obama’s ascent was, I think, in part due to his ability to deliver inspiring speeches – and the contrast was all the more dramatic given how GWB’s hypercaution often made him sound bumbling and confused. It drew a sharp contrast between the two. Many Americans still aren’t aware that Obama’s greatest communications gift was really nothing more than the ability to read convincingly from a teleprompter – and that’s no small thing in this day and age. But in press conferences and off-the-cuff circumstances, he wasn’t much better than Bush.

        This is partly why Trump is such an unprecedented political entity. Trump is completely unfiltered (and how we might all wish that he were). He is pure political id. His default is to say exactly what he wants to say and he apparently doesn’t give a damn about blowback.

        And THAT, I suspect, has a lot to do with why he won. On the heels of cycles in which voters saw example after example of deflections, finger pointing and honey-coated lies, along came Trump – like Al Czervik sashaying into Bushwood Country Club..

        • Bush was always excellent off the cuff. Like LBJ and his father (and McCain, who is also good extemporaneously and AWFUL in speeches) he never mastered speaking from a script. Anyone can fix this, but few politicians do. Dives me nuts.

          Reagan was better than Clinton. He wasn’t long-winded, his facial expressions were better and his voice was better. Bill also couldn’t hide his essential smugness and cockiness. Reagan had numerous speeches that are remembered, and quotes as well, like “Tear down this wall.” The two quotes Bill is known for are not as inspiring.

          Like Reagan, JFK had brilliant speechwriters, and conveyed youth, passion and sincerity. He was damn good, and would join Ronnie and Bill in my top three. Best unsuccessful candidate? Clean Gene McCarthy, hands down.

          • Arthur in Maine

            Agree to disagree.

            • On which? JFK? Clinton’s projected essential assholeness? Bush off the cuff? That awkward speakers can learn? That Ron’s speaking included an actor’s professional nuances? Surely not all of these?

              I also disagree about Obama. He was very good in his speaking skills, better than Clinton (better voice, better projected personality), great timing. He also had some memorable speeches. Obama had trouble when he went off script, but so did Marlon Brando.

              • Arthur in Maine

                I’ll give you JFK. Yes, Clinton absolutely could be long-winded, but mostly with prepared set-pieces; few people bothered to sit through his stemwinders (unless they had to). Off the cuff, he had the ability to simply and accessibly connect with listeners. I’ve never seen better, even though I trusted him half as far as I could throw a grand piano. He also had and has an uncanny ability to parse language on the fly. This is not admirable, but it IS effective. Yes, he could come off as an asshole, but I think he was able to connect with people because deep down, everyone knows they have some asshole inside them, too.

                RE Obama: I think he got better at it as his presidency continued, but his off-the-cuff stuff always had a stilted and overcautious quality to it, at least to my ear. His speeches were beautifully delivered, and they were skillfully written, but reading them afterwards always revealed a triumph of style over substance. They generally replaced concepts with pretty words. Reagan had both. And Obama over Clinton? Leaving aside marked differences in extemporaneous abilities, Obama always – to me, at least – came off as arch and not infrequently condescending.

                And I don’t agree with Bush off the cuff during his presidency. He had a few good moments, including the memorable “I can hear you!” moment on the rubble pile after 9/11 (though I’m not in the least convinced that wasn’t a brilliantly conceived and staged bit of political theater). But in general, his approach typically presented the overcaution I mentioned earlier. We agree on his speechifying and that improving delivery is absolutely a doable thing. And we agree that Reagan’s experience as an actor was extremely helpful in his delivery. Don’t matter where it comes from, as long as it’s there.

    • Pennagain

      I’m not getting into the argument itself since I have long (at least for the the past decade) believed that the left’s attitude is to deplorable-ize anything that doesn’t agree with it. As far as desiring a dictatorship, that could well be the ingenuousness of their politics. Children believe they will be happy if so-and-so loses all privileges forever, or leaves or dies (whatever “dying” means to them): they see no consequences beyond their immediate gratification.

      A main base of your conclusion, however, is not valid to drug or airplane trials. Four out of 45 — out of 44 if you don’t include Grover Cleveland twice — is not bad. And the total is much lower when you take away the altered (and often crossover) definitions of “Republican” and focus on the populations whom both parties represent now.

      Oops – I did sort of sneak into the argument anyway, didn’t I. Now that’s unethical!

  3. Chris

    BTW: You cite a “David Greenfield,” who is a Democratic politician. According to Zero Hedge, the speaker was Daniel Greenfield, a writer for the extreme anti-Muslim Freedom Center who believes that Obama colluded with Russia.

    • No, I mistyped “Daniel” for David. I couldn’t cite someone I never heard of.

    • The last part is ad hominen, classic.How about dealing with his argument?

      • Chris

        I’ve been dealing with his argument. Pointing out that the person making the argument is a dumb extremist is an added bonus.

        I was also hoping that doing so would help you notice that you have begun making similar arguments as dumb extremists.

        • You didn’t deal with it at all. I have been documenting the refusal of democrats to perform their cic duty and accept the election and the legitimacy of the elected President since they refused to do so beginning November 9, 2016. all you and others do is deny the facts and reality, or try to rationalize it, or say “But its Trump!” Which only means you have been captured by the insanity.

          • Chris

            You didn’t deal with it at all.

            Of course I did; you’re just choosing to ignore the parts you can’t rebut.

            Again, a man who rose to political prominence entirely by claiming a Democratic president was illegitimate is now the POTUS, and de facto head of the Republican party. He was not a Democrat at the time, as you wrongly claimed. So to act as if the delegitimization tactic is entirely a one-sided tactic is completely absurd. To say it constitutes a “Civil War” is dangerously irresponsible, and it is irresponsible of you to promulgate such rhetoric and pretend it’s reasonable. You know better.

            • So your argument boils down to “Republicans did it too”** instead of “Democrats aren’t doing it and here’s why”….with a dose of “the rhetoric describing his conclusions is too strong” instead of “here’s why his conclusions are wrong”.

              This is a very weak form argument. You know better.

              ** No, they didn’t.

  4. jan chapman

    After years of Republicans claiming that Obama was not even a citizen, it is rich that Mr. Greenfield dwells on the delegitimization of Republican presidents.

    For the record, I (and I would guess the majority of “lefties,” as they are so often referred to on this blog), do not want Trump impeached or removed from office in any way other than defeat in 2020. We realize that if he goes then Mike Pence would take his place and he is much scarier than Trump. He has actual core values and, I believe, could win a Presidential election.

    Our focus is on electing a Democratic majority in the House and/or Senate this fall and hoping that the effect of Trump’s policies on the people who voted for him will eat away at his base. That is our focus; not on collusion with Russia or porn stars or his cholesterol count. People who spend their time in the comment section of MSNBC are not the people out doing the work. The people on the ground are not dwelling on these things, they are organizing.

    • Jan. Come on. “Republicans” did not claim that Obama was not a citizen. Fringe wackos, bloggers, right wing radio hosts and nuts did. There was no investigations or hearings. No House member was traveling the country telling audiences that Obama was a fraud. The rumor was started in Clinton’s 2008 campaign. (Of course it was.)The news media did carry water for the Birthers. No academics were claiming that Obama could or should be deposed. There were no arguments that he should be removed. I knew one birther. One. This is the ultimate “whataboutism” dodge. Out of respect for your intelligence, which is apparently on holiday, I’m going to pretend that you didn’r write this. You’re welcome.

      • Chris

        As I already pointed out, and as you should have noticed yourself, the most famous of all the birthers is now President of the United States. If claiming that a president is illegitimate constitutes a Civil War, then Trump is Robert E. Lee, and he managed to rest control of the Union.

        (Trump isn’t Robert E. Lee, because claiming that a president is illegitimate doesn’t constitute a Civil War.)

      • Sue Dunim

        ” Fringe wackos, bloggers, right wing radio hosts and nuts did. ”

        You mean GOP state legislators and governors? Many of them anyway. Or do you mean many of Trump’s judicial nominees? Or do you mean the Vice President’s associates?

        • Way below your standards. I mean, correctly, that there were fringe characters and assholes. No US Senators, no House members. “Many” governors? This website found none. Unlike others, this list plays fair, and does not include as birthers GOP officials who “didn’t condemn birthers.” That was Salon’s trick. There were less than 400 on the fair list, almost none of them I had ever heard of.

          Yup, that’s equivalent to a year of much of the Democratic Party and its leadership denigrating the President and trying to find a route to remove him. By having to resort to the pathetic birthers, you, Jan and Chris reveal how the Left has no excuses or defense. Just res ipsa loquitur.

          • Chris

            Except that none of us are defending Democrats, we are objecting to the hysterical, irresponsible and freakish notion that they are engaged in a “civil war.”

            Keep ignoring that the leader of the birthers is now president as if Donald Trump is a different person now then he was then.

            • By no stretch of the imagination was Trump “the leader of the birthers.” He didn’t file lawsuits. He was the most prominent of the birthers, not the leader of the claim by any interpretation. And, as I just pointed out to Sue Denim, who, unlike you, has an excuse for being confused, there were fewer than 400 public advocates for the nonsense, none of them GOP leaders. Your resort to this dishonest and pathetic whataboutist “defense” proves my point. Thanks.

              • Chris

                So the birthers were insurgents, then.

                Or, alternately, the militaristic language shouldn’t be used to describe people who disagree with you, even if they engage in unethical (but legal and non-violent) tactics.

                So we’re not in a civil war.

              • charlesgreen

                “Trump’s decision to refer to Obama’s “native” Hawaii reminds all that he was a leader of the “birther” movement, consistently spreading a theory that Obama wasn’t a U.S. citizen.”
                Newsweek, 12/21/2017

                • How dos that make sense to anyone, especially you? Hawaii’s a state. If he referred to Kerry’s “native Massachusetts” would Newsweek suspect the same thing? Newsweek is nuts, and has been for years. This is more evidence.

                  • Chris

                    It makes sense because it was Trump himself who put the word “native” in quotation marks, not Newsweek.

                    Now, it’s well-established that Trump doesn’t know how quotation marks work and often puts them around words that don’t require them, but a reading of this tweet that assumes he used them correctly and intentionally would lead one to believe he was using the term “native” sarcastically, thus calling into question Obama’s birthplace once again.

      • jan chapman

        I appreciate your assurance that I am not stupid, but I don’t need the condescension.

        In fact, there were Republicans in congress who either openly expressed doubt about Obama’s birth status or willingly fanned the doubts of their constituents. If you would like a list, I can provide it.

        My point was that we, the people in the trenches on the Left, are not interested in removing Trump from office in any way other than defeating him in the election of 2020. Those who scream the loudest are not the ones working on the ground.

        And please stop promulgating the rumor that the birther movement began in the Clinton campaign. It has been debunked by multiple sources and is just not true.

        • jan chapman wrote, “And please stop promulgating the rumor that the birther movement began in the Clinton campaign. It has been debunked by multiple sources and is just not true.”

          Please submit your proof that it started outside of the Clinton campaign – identify the source.

        • jan chapman wrote, “My point was that we, the people in the trenches on the Left, are not interested in removing Trump from office in any way other than defeating him in the election of 2020. Those who scream the loudest are not the ones working on the ground.”

          Those who scream the loudest are getting the attention of everyone and I don’t see the core of the left speaking out against these screamers – why not Jan?

          • Pennagain

            Thanks, Z. I am finally learning to read down the whole Comment chain before writing so I don’t have to take up space to say something with less brevity and more perspicacity than has been said. I live in one of the densest cores of the left. The screamers and marchers are the activators of the electorate, overwhelming or intimidating (consciously or not, by noise and numbers) any other sounds or sense. The few who are “working on the ground” are those who will use them to re-build the Democrat party into a deafer, dumber SJW mold.

        • Chris

          My understanding is that one person employed with the Clinton campaign did start the Obama birther claim, but that it never spread very far, and was never embraced by Hillary or her campaign.

          And bringing it up to say “They started it!” is the height of deflection. The theory did not gain any traction on the left, while it did gain traction on the right. Trump was an Independent when he started making media appearances to tout the conspiracy theory and a Republican for the majority of these appearances. It was thus a right-wing conspiracy theory, and there is no point in bringing up the Clinton staffer who originated it except to draw a false moral equivalence.

          • Chris

            In other words, the birther claim did start from someone on the Clinton campaign, but Jan is correct to say it is false that the birther movement started there. The movement was a right-wing one. It would be like saying Republicans are ultimately responsible for the Trump-Russia theory because Fusion GPS was originally hired by Republicans.

            • Chris wrote, “In other words, the birther claim did start from someone on the Clinton campaign, but Jan is correct to say it is false that the birther movement started there…”

              This is an intellectually dishonest argument.

              The source of the propaganda is the source of the “movement”, the movement would not have existed without the source. It really doesn’t make much difference who continued the propaganda once it was released to the public, the propaganda did exactly what it was intended to do, to negatively influence the public about a political opponent regardless of truth.

              This is exactly how the political left is spreading fake propaganda these days, they have vast experience with spreading false propaganda, they’ve been spreading it thick for many years.

              • Chris

                The source of the propaganda is the source of the “movement”, the movement would not have existed without the source. It really doesn’t make much difference who continued the propaganda once it was released to the public, the propaganda did exactly what it was intended to do, to negatively influence the public about a political opponent regardless of truth.

                So the source of the Trump-Russia movement is the Republican party, then, and it would be fair to point this out every time someone criticizes the Democratic party for pushing this movement?

                • Chris wrote, ”So the source of the Trump-Russia movement is the Republican party,”

                  Chris you’re going to have to explain that one further because I have no idea exactly what you’re talking about.

                  • Chris

                    It was the conservative Washington Free Beacon that originally hired Fusion GPS to do oppo research on Donald Trump.

                    That said, after reading a bit more I realize that Christopher Steele was not hired until after the firm was hired by the Clinton campaign, and the Russia links did not emerge until that time. So my analogy doesn’t quite work.

                    I still think it’s obviously wrong to say the “birther movement” started with the Democrats. One dude is not a movement.

    • valkygrrl

      The thing about Pence is, he wouldn’t be spending half the day on twitter, wouldn’t start a nuclear war in a fit of pique and isn’t so much of a braggart that he would spill our intelligence secrets for the sole purpose of self aggrandizement. It’s really amazing how good anyone who doesn’t behave like a spoiled four-year-old looks when compared to Trump.

  5. Steve-O-in-NJ

    He’s not wrong. It’s just been getting uglier and uglier over the past year. The Democratic Party had its taste of total power under Obama and it can’t wait to get that power back, by any means fair or foul.

    • It’s exponential.

      It was getting uglier and uglier since the 80s. Only then, the significant symptoms were manifest few and far between. It’s been accelerating. Slowly. More noticeable in 2000. The Obama-doctrine of divide and vilify really showed the increase. Then the 2016 election cycle was pretty much “game on”.

  6. charlesgreen

    Jack, are you kidding?

    “The Mueller investigation is about removing President Trump from office and overturning the results of an election. We all know that.”

    That is rank zero-content polemic and propaganda. To being with, we don’t all “know that.” I sure as hell don’t.

    To continue, “Every time a Republican president won an election this century, the Democrats insist he didn’t really win.”

    Rank BS. Nearly all Democrats I know, and certainly me, make a constitutionally-based distinction between “winning the popular vote” and “being legally elected.” There is no argument from me or anyone to the right of Lenin that we live in a pure democracy where the electoral college doesn’t exist. That is the valid, accepted way we elect presidents. If a President doesn’t get a plurality of the vote, that is politically relevant – but NOBODY I know claims it means he “didn’t really win.”

    For this raving lunatic to intentionally blur the distinction is bad enough: to then claim that it is DEMOCRATS who blur the distinction is the worst form of argumentation. Pure polemic. YOU should be the one calling this moron out.

    How do you not see this?

    • charlesgreen

      And another thing…what Greenfield wrote is not an analysis, it is a polemic. There’s a place for polemic, to be sure, I have no problem with that.

      But for you to ask for someone to rebut his “ANALYSIS” is absurd. It is not an analysis, it is a screed.

      And it’s unfair for you to assist him by calling it otherwise.

      • I don’t see how you can claim that, though. The tone is polemic. The argument that when a party refuses to accept an election that they lose as legitimate is totalitarian is analysis. And an accurate one.

        • Chris

          The argument that when a party refuses to accept an election that they lose as legitimate is totalitarian is analysis. And an accurate one.

          He went far beyond calling the Democrats totalitarian, and argued that they’re engaging in a “civil war.” That’s not “accurate,” Jack. That’s hysterical rhetoric, as bad as anything from the Resistance.

        • charlesgreen

          “The argument that when a party refuses to accept an election that they lose as legitimate”

          False premise. Ergo all that follows is gibberish.

          The party does not “refuse to accept an election.” Show me a Democrat that claims Hillary “won” the election by winning more electoral college votes. That is the constitutional DEFINITION of winning an election and every Dem knows it.

          It is also true that Trump LOST the popular vote. Plus he’s a jerk and we don’t like him.

          To conflate those two facts by claiming that Dems “refuse to accept an election” and claim it’s somehow fomenting revolution is absurd, insulting, inflammatory and cheap. Not to mention just a faulty syllogism.

    • Chris

      Yes, Charles, it would be far more accurate to say “The Mueller investigation is about an attack on our nation that the president has at various points denied, accepted, and seemingly encouraged; numerous suspicious contacts between the Trump campaign and the Russian government that were lied about, which has resulted in at least one felony that we know of; and continued suspicious activity by the president including repeated delays on sanctions on Russia.”

    • I agree that “The Mueller investigation is about removing President Trump from office and overturning the results of an election. We all know that.” I don’t believe that this is Meuller’s objective, but I believe it is the reason the investigation exists. The objective is impeachment. I don’t know how you can not see that. The GOP spawned the Whitewater investigation for the same reason, though there was actually evidence of a crime.

      I agree with Arthur that the 2000 election with the 2016 effort to overthrow Trump doesn’t establish a trend. But I documented how the Democrats did and continue to claim that Bush was not a legitimate President, and that the election was stolen, specifically to undermine Bush and divide the country.. I wrote multiple essays about how this was dangerous, and they leaped to the next level with Trump, arguing that the election was stolen by Russia.

      The whole year of protests, screaming at the sky, calls for impeachment on specious grounds, and hysterical and misleading news reports backs Greenfield’s thesis, is unprecedented, and is existentially alarming.

      The obdurate denials by you and Chris do more to convince me that Greenfield may be correct than anything Greenfield said. Deal with the boycotts of the Inauguration and the Sate of the Union, Justice Ginsberg’s insults, deal with the efforts to ban the President from ceremonial functions, deal with the non-stop anti-Trump personal attacks and Al Green’s impeachment articles. Deal with Brian Ross, Comey’s leak, Sally Yates, Maxine Waters, the media coverage of “Fire and Fury” as if it wasn’t a book of gossip, and the respect given to the unlicensed Yale psychiatric professors’s unethical diagnosis. No previous President has had to endure these kinds of attack on his legitimacy. Your comment reads like you think 2017 was a mirage.

      • charlesgreen

        Deal with the Russians hacking the election, because Trump damn sure won’t.

        My prediction: Trump will not be found guilty of collusion, but he’s looking pretty ripe for obstruction of justice. Which is no trivial matter.

        • The elections weren’t hacked. I don’t know how any educated person can claim this in 2018.

          • Greg

            I don’t know either, but my brother is a very educated person and he believes it. At Christmas, I scoffed at the idea that the Russians could hack the election by spending less than $100,000 on Facebook ads when the candidates themselves spent more than $6,000,000,000 — more than 60,000 times as much. His answer, “That’s one of the scary things. Why are the Russians so much better at this than we are?” I thought at first that he was joking, but he wasn’t.

            There’s really no point trying to talk about this. Everybody made up their mind long ago, you’ve already heard all of the arguments on both sides many times and nobody’s opinion will ever be changed.

        • Obstruction of justice…how so?

        • Chris marschner

          Charles, what is the heading under the CFR making collusion a crime. I think you mean conspiracy.

          If one cannot be convicted of a crime because evidence is non existent – not destroyed evidence or suboerned perjury – I mean no available evidence, how can someone obstruct justice?

          Please define justice for me.

          • charlesgreen

            “Collusion” is not a criminal statute, and again i doubt he’ll be found culpable of it anyway. Obstruction: that’s an entirely different matter. He’s probably already exceeded the collusion levels that were used to charge Nixon and Clinton.

            • Let me fix this for you, Charles: There is no such crime as “collusion.” There is a crime if there was a quid pro quo to induce a foreign country to commit a criminal act, such as hacking. There is no evidence of this whatsoever, and has never been. There is no evidence of any such crime, and knowing or not knowing that staff has met or is meeting with any Russians tht you or I could also meet with is not a crime or evidence of one. I assume you wrote “collusion” when you meant “Obstruction.” Your statement is tell-tale sign of derangement. Clinton lied and induced evidence to be hidden. He actively tried to impede the investigation, and induced appointees to cover for him. He was dishonest to the grand jury. There were tapes of Nixon engineering a cover-up and discussing paying hush-mpney. The last sentence is irresponsible, and pure speculation.

              • charlesgreen

                Jack – I SAID there is no such crime as collusion. We are in violent agreement here, I don’t know how you read my comment as suggesting otherwise.

                • You said statute, implying misconduct without a law. My point is that the word is just a pejorative to imply wrongdoing where there is none. There has also been no obstruction.

                  • charlesgreen

                    No obstruction? I am at a loss for words…

                    • Demonstrate it.

                      You’ve been asked to do so already, but you didn’t.

                    • texaggo4,
                      When you can’t demonstrate it you don’t. It’s a bit like demonstrating that God exists, a person may firmly believe that God exists but they really can’t demonstrate it, they just take it on faith; maybe that’s what Charles is doing.

                    • You’re at a loss for law. The obstruction theories are uniformly ridiculous, and have been properly debunked by professors Turley and Dershowitz, among many others. What do you think is such obvious obstruction? If you don’t cite firing employees that he has every right to fire, I promise I won’t be mean..

  7. Inquiring Mind

    Here is the problem:
    Do we do ourselves a disservice by not accepting the evidence that Greenfield is right about the situation?

    He is not the first to postulate this: Conservative commentator Dennis Prager has used the same phrase (a civil war). Kurt Schlichter is also of this mindset – that the Left is no longer willing to accept any rule but its own.

    This same playbook was run after the 2000 election (recounts, hijacking electors, challenging the electoral votes of Florida). It was partially run after 2004 (challenging the electoral votes of Ohio).

    I think a chicken trusting its welfare to Colonel Harlan Sanders is smarter than a person who trusts the Democrats to peacefully relinquish power the next time they lose a presidential election.

  8. He’s not wrong.

    Everything about modern Democrat politics immediately makes sense once you view their actions through the paradigm that they are in War Mode in a Cold Civil War.

  9. Steve-O-in-NJ

    I’d just like to remind everyone here that just over two years ago Obama was trying to impose immigrants on several states who didn’t want them. Half the governors in this nation voiced their opposition, most of them from the GOP.

    The same lefties who are now cheering Democratic mayors and governors for defying Trump with sanctuary cities and states were emphasizing the all-powerful nature of the Federal government, how it was entitled to all deference, and saying that obstructing the president and hoping he failed was treason. The fact is, they are not dealing in treason. They are dealing in heresy. Anyone who defies the leftist narrative is a heretic.

    I would also remind everyone here that South Carolina and other states first began to defy federal law in the age of Andrew Jackson. Initially this was mostly over tariffs, but all too soon it became about slavery. Andrew Jackson actually said that he was going to hang the first South Carolinian he could get his hands on to the first tree he could find if there was open defiance of federal law. It sounds to me like the lefties now would have cheered on Obama talking like that if there was open resistance to his attempts to resettle immigrants in states that wanted no part of it, of course there would be no reference to Jackson himself, who has now entered the pantheon of the politically incorrect. However, these same people would now be siding with the secessionists who pulled South Carolina and ultimately other states out of the Union in a dispute over Federal power. It just depends on what party is in power, and what the issue is.

    The left is no longer a coherent political philosophy. It is a religion of power. Its gospel changes depending on whether it will advance or inhibit the power of its devotees. Just as Satan in the Christian religion must always be second in power to God, so must the right be forever second to the all-powerful, all righteous left. Logic and consistency are irrelevant.

  10. Other Bill

    Victor Davis Hanson similarly on the current state of affairs: https://amgreatness.com/2018/01/29/conspiracy-theories-conspiracies/

    I don’t think he’s polemical or hysterical.

  11. Daniel Greenfield wrote, “When you consistently reject the results of elections that you don’t win, what you want is a dictatorship. Your very own dictatorship.”

    I disagree with Greenfield that we are headed for a “dictatorship”.

    I think we are headed for a totalitarian government with a very select group of hive-minded Progressive intellectuals as the ultimate supreme leadership. If Progressives have their way, the United States Constitution and freedom/liberty will die with thunderous applause and as long as Progressives are on the winning side; they will accept nothing less. I firmly believe that the goal of Progressives is a totalitarian government and the only way it will lean towards a dictatorship is if they could get a fully brainwashed Progressive like Obama to step into power. Furthermore; I firmly believe that Progressives want their totalitarian government to be world-wide.

    Totalitarianism from wikipedia (yes I know, I know, it’s wikipedia)
    “Totalitarian regimes stay in political power through… an all-encompassing propaganda campaign, which is disseminated through the state-controlled mass media, a single party that is often marked by political repression, personality cultism, control over the economy, regulation and restriction of speech, mass surveillance, and widespread use of terror. A distinctive feature of totalitarian governments is an “elaborate ideology, a set of ideas that gives meaning and direction to the whole society.”

    Progressives already have in place:
    1. An all-encompassing propaganda campaign.

    2. A mass media that is compliant at disseminating their propaganda.

    3. They are a single “party” that has shown their political repression.

    4. They have shown that their personality cultism (blindly devoted, almost worship, their Progressive leaders) but more accurately a Progressive ideological cultism.

    5. They have shown that they want to control over the economy in that they want to make all things equal regardless of market controls: e.g.salaries.

    6. It’s becoming real obvious that Progressives want to regulate and restrict speech.

    7. Progressives have set in place an army of hive-minded Progressives that are more than willing to destroy others that do not conform to their Progressive beliefs.

    8. It’s becoming relatively obvious that Progressives have the population on edge with their leanings towards the destruction of peoples lives based on accusations without no proof and absolutely no due process; if that is not “terrorizing” the population without physical weapons I don’t know what is. Submit or be destroyed.

    9. Progressives have been pushing or brainwashing their “set of ideas that gives meaning and direction to the whole society” into the population for quite some time. The deliberate dumbing down of America

    So how do you like my use of wikipedia. 😉

    • Here’s how Progressives work;
      1. Brainwash the public with constant propaganda and the public will either adapt the ideology as their own or go underground for fear of publicly opposing the ideology, so basically either way they get pubic to comply to their ideology.

      2. When a majority of the voting public and pubic demonstrating mobs fall in line with #1 they will proclaim that “it’s the will of the people” and tell the world like a bunch of pompous assholes that “we are the ones we’ve been waiting for”.

  12. Emily

    It’s interesting that many of our left wing folks seem to think there’s no civil war, while the most outspoken right wing folks are like, “yeah, there’s pretty much a civil war.”

    I think both sides are honest in their perspectives here.

    I think that the source of this difference is connected to the whole “right side of history,” march of progress idea the left has. I think that they see the world moving towards more progressive ideals– their specific set of progressive ideals– as the natural order. For them, Bush and Trump aren’t the will of the people, they’re mistakes. They’re the fault of senile old people who will be dead soon and trolls just wanting to cause trouble and watch things burn. All of these flyover states get votes in the electoral college and who even lives there?

    To them, Trump is “this is not who I am!” on a national scale. We got caught on Election day wearing our torn Lynyrd Skynyrd shirt and sweat pants. The neighbors are wondering about us. We are regretting this, and want to reassure everyone that this was a mistake.

    What can not be true is that anyone in their right mind meant to vote for Trump. So correcting the mistake isn’t an act of war, it isn’t even controversial, it’s just what you do when you made a faux pas.

    Of course, many people did mean to vote for Trump. And to those people, trying to “correct this mistake” is actually “overruling the will of the people.” Which sure as hell seems like a sign we’re at war.

    So, what I’m seeing is that we’re in a civil war, but the left has no idea.

    • Emily wrote, “…Bush and Trump aren’t the will of the people, they’re mistakes.”

      Speaking of Bush and Trump; did anyone see the Bush and Trump bashing in the opening skit on Saturday Night Live this past Saturday? I rarely watch that show anymore because of its blatant partisan bashing and lack of effective humor.

    • Other Bill

      Nice comment, Emily. Particularly liked the Lynyrd Skynyrd line. You’ve hit the proverbial nail on the head.

    • Steve-O-in-NJ

      I think the left isn’t being totally honest here…yet. The left are at heart totalitarians, but not just nanny-state totalitarians who want to “put it my way but nicely.” Every so often the mask slips and they are revealed as the bullies and tyrants they really are. A good chunk of them don’t just disagree with the right, they hate and loathe the right and want the right gone.

      I’ve twice posted Jim Wright’s unhinged rant from stonekettle station calling for destructive rioting and the beating up of anyone who disagrees with the left’s campaign of historical airbrushing. I won’t repost it because looking at it makes my face turn purple and my blood pressure spike. But go ahead and look it up if you want a look behind the mask.

      Actor Michael Shannon posted the following:

      “There’s a lot of old people who need to realize they’ve had a nice life, and it’s time for them to move on, because they’re the ones who go out and vote for these assholes. If you look at the young people, between 18 and 25, if it was up to them, Hillary would have been president. No offense to the seniors out there. My mom’s a senior citizen. But if you’re voting for Trump, it’s time for the urn.”

      “And if your parents voted for Trump? “Fuck ’em. You’re an orphan now. Don’t go home. Don’t go home for Thanksgiving or Christmas. Don’t talk to them at all. Silence speaks volumes.”

      This isn’t talk of totalitarian rule. This isn’t even eugenics. This is talk of liquidation of all those a certain and/or all those who voted a certain way. It’s also a VERY revealing look behind the mask. In 2004 Michelle Malkin accused Ted Rall, then about the farthest left you could get, of being “an ideological streaker” for publishing a cartoon that said that the proper fate for Condoleeza Rice was to be sent to “inner-city racial re-education camp,” and that statements like that reflected the real thinking of the left at the time, without the drapery of “diversity” or “multiculturalism” that was usually used to cover it.

      A look behind the mask in 2004, during the contentious Bush/Kerry election revealed some outrageous enough thoughts. A look now doesn’t show harsh humor with racial overtones (of course it’s ok for the left to use racial overtones). It shows naked hatred with politicidal (killing because of politics) and geriatricidal (killing because of age) intent. This isn’t amusing, it isn’t witty, it isn’t even fun to read, unless your idea of fun is to get yourself frothing with hatred and talk of mass murder.

      Look, I get that when one side in a political contest loses there is going to be anger and frustration. When one side in a political contest loses badly AGAINST what all the predictors and indicators show, there is going to be a LOT of anger and frustration. When that side has rallied around candidates who never accept the blame, and has made a habit of never accepting the blame, while at the same time feeding itself hatred of the other side as racist, hateful, xenophobic, it isn’t going to look inward, ask where it went wrong, and plan to do better the next time out. It’s going to blame the other side for selling evil and everyone who voted for the other side for buying evil and declare both evil. You don’t debate with evil, you don’t negotiate with evil, you don’t try to get along with evil, you destroy evil, because it’s evil.

      To the left, trying to deal with the right now is like the firemen trying to deal with the fire instead of putting it out, or the Allies negotiating a peace with Hitler. Maybe Kurt Schlict wasn’t using hyperbole when he said we on the right should fear being knocked down with a Birkenstock stomping on our face forever. I’d take it one step farther and say we on the right should fear a future where liberal bulletproof limousine convoys traverse highways past collapsing barns and farmhouses, orchards and fields growing wild, and shops and stores with dark windows, empty shelves, and slowly collapsing roofs on their way from New York to Boston or DC, while inside pantsuited women and suave nonwhite men eat smoked almonds and raise their champagne glasses to a future without the right.

  13. Chris Marschner

    After listening to his speech I came away with a completely different take on the overall message. To me, he was chastising professional governance. I do not consider it irresponsible demagoguery but an merely the idea that we have gotten away from citizen governance and allowed our governing bodies to be overtaken by a ruling elite that uses its power to obtain more power. In doing so, they have created a civil war that rages within our society which helps them retain power.

    Given that the speech was being delivered to a South Carolina Tea Party group his ideas would be readily accepted; and why not? Nationally, Tea Party groups were disparaged by the I.R.S, Anderson Cooper with his vulgar teabagger comments, the Congressional Black Caucus, and left leaning political commentators. Typically, they were characterized as racists, rednecks, rubes, and others that cling to their guns and religion. We know who made the clinger statement. Disparagement and ridicule is the modus operandi of power seekers and those with few abilities or achievements. It works because they know that if someone challenges them the challenger will become the target of ridicule; it becomes psychological extortion.

    If asked whether I agree with the statement that the paramount objective of Mueller’s investigation is to remove the President I would have to answer that I don’t know. I do know that current evidence would lead someone to believe that a criminal charge is the objective. I made the point several days ago that seeking an obstruction charge without having the ability to prove an underlying charge of conspiracy is prima facie evidence of not seeking justice but merely to obtain a conviction. This is especially believable given the coordinated efforts to find multiple avenues for removal from office.

    But, for others it depends on who you talk to. For some, if not many, on the left and right, the answer is yes. For the hard left, they cannot believe that the uncouth, philandering skunk that they believe Trump is is competent to make good decisions and that he is a man whose personality is a danger to their way of life – some even go so far as saying he will cause a nuclear war and should be removed in favor of some more sane person – preferably a woman. Thus, he must be exposed and charged with any crime for which impeachment can take place. For the those on the right, they would say the Democrats are using the investigation, based on scant evidence, to delegitimize Trump to prevent him from being a successful leader. The latter is plausible to an objective observer. The former, has some merit based on comments but it is a leap too far to believe he would initiate mutually assured destruction.

    Greenfield’s theme was that because Trump was an outsider and won that was in itself unacceptable to the rulers who live and work in and around the “Imperial City” Washington DC. His win was a threat to their way of life in the Imperial City so he must be neutered. The civil war he speaks of is that of the rulers favorite tactic of using tribalism to foment outrage against the newcomer. What I find amusing is that in one breath we talk about to value of diversity of people while simultaneously disparaging the newcomer to DC. The thrust of Greenfield’s speech is that the existing power structure wants to maintain a wall around DC to keep out anyone that threatens the existing order. He calls that the means to maintain the dictatorship.

    His attack on the Left is based on his belief that they use “Positive Rights” to enamor themselves with the huddled masses. Positive Rights are those they confer upon the people as compared to Negative Rights which are inalienable rights that protect us from governmental intrusion. There is substantial number of Americans that rely heavily on the administrative state to advance their own wellbeing. This is neither a right nor left characteristic. It is a characteristic of those whose livelihoods rely on the administrative state and those who choose not to avail themselves of opportunities that abound in a free society. To them a truly free society is a significant threat to their way of life.

    I do agree that using two elections to cement, as proof positive, there is a conspiracy to undermine all Republican presidents by the left is near impossible for me to accept. However, I do accept the idea that both sides attempt to diminish the person in the Oval Office through innuendo, scandal, investigations and other means to prevent the president from gaining traction that would threaten their chances of winning in upcoming elections.

    If for a moment we can be honest with ourselves, we must admit that we usually fail to seek an understanding of a differing point of view; we rely on our default positions no matter how incongruous they may be to common sense. We often blind ourselves with our own self righteousness so badly that we allow the ruling dictatorship to manipulate us into keeping them in power. Our elected leaders rely on our own intellectual dishonesty and bias to maintain control and power.

    • Comment of the Day. And listening to a speech rather than reading it is the responsible approach.

    • Chris Marschner,
      Really good comment.

      P.S. Since speeches are “usually” written first and then presented, I usually read speeches for content and then watch or listen to it to see how it was delivered. I learned this trick from an old friend that proved to me with simple experimentation that I can get more out of the speech if I do it that way. I have a strong tendency to retain what I read where things that I just hear are not retained as well. The listening/watching the speech after I read it reinforces both the read version in memory and the presented version about equally, it did not work as well reversing the order.

  14. Chris

    Anyone who believes the Mueller investigation is unjust wanna take a crack at explaining why the Trump administration today refused to implement the sanctions on Russia that were passed by a bipartisan Congress? I read the official explanation, and it makes no sense—the arguments are, to paraphrase, “Threatening to impose sanctions is more of a deterrent than actually imposing sanctions,” and “Shut up, it’s classified.”

    Does this not at least create the appearance of impropriety? A big suspicion underlying this investigation is that there may have been some kind of agreement between the Trump campaign and Russia—“You help me, I help you.” How could this not add fuel to that suspicion? How is it unreasonable to find this suspicious?

    • Chris marschner

      Chris. Please don’t put quotation marks around phrases that yo say are paraphrases.

      To paraphrase you give an impression of the thought. Quotes are only used around exact wording.

      Based on your logic then Obama’s covert return of billions in cash to the Iranian government in violation of existing law is proof that Obama is an operative of the Iranian regime.

      Congress authorizes sanctions but leaves their imposition to the discretion of the executive branch based on the circumstances that exist at any given moment. What you are arguing is that Trump must hammer the Russians everytime or it is proof of quid pro quo. Your analysis fails the reasonableness test which suggests that in a dynamic global environment static decision making is both unrealistic and potentially counterproductive.

      • Chris

        Chris. Please don’t put quotation marks around phrases that yo say are paraphrases.

        There is nothing wrong with doing so in a forum like this and when the intent is clearly to mock.

        To paraphrase you give an impression of the thought. Quotes are only used around exact wording.

        You’re speaking to an English teacher, and I know that’s the case in formal, academic writing. This is not that.

        Based on your logic then Obama’s covert return of billions in cash to the Iranian government in violation of existing law is proof that Obama is an operative of the Iranian regime.

        No. Not even close. Obama was not under investigation at the time for his dealings with Iran. Our country had not recently been the victim of a cyber-attack by Iran, and Obama had not denied such a clear attack. Obama did not spend his campaign praising Rouhani. There was no evidence that Iran attempted to influence the election so that Obama would benefit, no evidence that members of Obama’s campaign staff had secretly met with Iranian agents on the promise of dirt on Romney, no guilty pleas over lying about contacts between Obama officials and Iran, and no financial web between Obama and Iran.

        The comparison is as facile as can be.

        Congress authorizes sanctions but leaves their imposition to the discretion of the executive branch based on the circumstances that exist at any given moment.

        What are the circumstances that would lead a rational executive to believing these sanctions should not be implemented? That was clearly a part of my original question, and you dodged it.

        What you are arguing is that Trump must hammer the Russians everytime or it is proof of quid pro quo.

        No, I am arguing that Trump refusing to do the bare minimum—implement sanctions passed by Congress—adds to the already existing suspicion of a quid pro quo. Surely you know the difference between suspicion and proof? Your claim that my argument is about “proof” of anything is far more misleading than my use of sarcastic quote marks to paraphrase the administration’s logic for refusing to implement the sanctions.

        Your analysis fails the reasonableness test which suggests that in a dynamic global environment static decision making is both unrealistic and potentially counterproductive.

        Weasel words. I asked for an alternate explanation of WHY the administration made this choice, other than the possibility of a quid pro quo. “Circumstances change” and “the administration can do it if they want to” aren’t explanations, they’re deflections. I am sure there could be circumstances wherein the decision to not implement sanctions passed by Congress could be reasonable. What are those circumstances, and do they exist currently? Do you know? Do you care?

        • Chris marschner

          Quotation marks mean something. I don’t care whether you are employed teaching English or not. I know many English teachers who couldn’t identify a split infinitive or a past participle. Most of my former Econ 201 and 202 students could not compose a grammatically correct sentence, let alone develop a logical arguement.

          Obama was not under investigation. Do you think Holder would instigate an investigation of anyone in that administration. Holder was a political operative using the DOJ to reward friends and punish enemies (Obama’ s words not mine) The payoff was to conclude a deal that was never brought to Congress for ratification. Thus the payment contravened existing law. In fact, he converted the currency to obfuscate the transaction. Only because someone photographed the planeload of cash would we be aware of the delivery. Money is fungible and cash is untraceable. A wire transfer would have been a more efficient method of transferring funds had it been a legitimate and lawful transfer.

          As for knowing the difference between suspicion and proof my comment was directed at the proposition that Trump should always hammer the Russians irrespective of existing conditions on the ground. The notion that because it arouses suspicion among Trump haters, he should implement every act he is authorized to do otherwise Trump haters will use it as evidence of some prior agreement borne out of collusion. That is what you said. We have a law, passed by Congress that directs the executive branch to diligently execute current immigration law. Should he follow that to the letter of law?

          He owes no one an explanation for anything because someone demands one. Currently, the North Korea situation involves cooperation from both China and Russia. A reasonable person would know that the simplest and most probable explanation is that he wants to get Russian cooperation to close the backdoor on North Korean methods of avoiding our sanctions on them.

          • Chris

            Quotation marks mean something.

            True. Sometimes they mean “This is exactly what was said,” and sometimes they mean “Christ, look at this asshole.” Mine clearly meant the latter. I specified immediately that I was paraphrasing, so there’s no way of accusing me of being deceptive here. You’re just being prescriptivist here.

            Obama was not under investigation. Do you think Holder would instigate an investigation of anyone in that administration.

            There was never even any hint that Obama was in debt to Iran, that he was obsessed with praising its leader, or that they made an effort to get him elected. There wouldn’t have been an investigation into any such issue regardless of how unbiased the DOJ was.

            The payoff was to conclude a deal that was never brought to Congress for ratification. Thus the payment contravened existing law. In fact, he converted the currency to obfuscate the transaction. Only because someone photographed the planeload of cash would we be aware of the delivery. Money is fungible and cash is untraceable. A wire transfer would have been a more efficient method of transferring funds had it been a legitimate and lawful transfer.

            We are not going to agree on the legality of the Iran deal, but it’s neither here nor there. In fact, it’s deflection. It has no bearing on the issue of Trump refusing to implement sanctions on a country that committed a cyber attack on ours for the purposes of harming his political opponent.

            As for knowing the difference between suspicion and proof my comment was directed at the proposition that Trump should always hammer the Russians irrespective of existing conditions on the ground. The notion that because it arouses suspicion among Trump haters, he should implement every act he is authorized to do otherwise Trump haters will use it as evidence of some prior agreement borne out of collusion. That is what you said.

            No, it is not.

            He owes no one an explanation for anything because someone demands one.

            The president doesn’t owe the public transparency on why he is refusing to enact bipartisan sanctions on a country that attacked us? You can’t mean that.

            Currently, the North Korea situation involves cooperation from both China and Russia. A reasonable person would know that the simplest and most probable explanation is that he wants to get Russian cooperation to close the backdoor on North Korean methods of avoiding our sanctions on them.

            Finally, a reasonable alternate explanation. So why didn’t the Trump admin say that?

            • Emily

              Finally, a reasonable alternate explanation. So why didn’t the Trump admin say that?

              Maybe because the discussions with Russia regarding that are “Shut up, it’s classified”? I thought we were against Trump running his mouth about that stuff and screwing up international diplomacy.

              • Chris

                This alternate theory is certainly plausible.

                I believe that, in the context of the many other red flags regarding Trump and Russia, the quid pro quo* theory is more plausible.

                I remain stumped as to why so many here refuse to consider each individual event as a part of the larger context.

                *I think it’s entirely possible there was no verbal or written quid pro quo, and what’s happening is based on an unspoken “You help me, I help you attitude.” In which case, Trump couldn’t (and shouldn’t) be impeached unless he was caught on tape saying “Screw America’s best interests: let’s pay back Putin!”

                • “I remain stumped as to why so many here refuse to consider each individual event as a part of the larger context.”

                  Responsible people do not consider individual parts that have been thoroughly debunked.

                  • Chris

                    None of the red flags I have mentioned in the comments here have been “debunked.”

                    • Well, we know you’ve convinced yourself of that.

                    • Chris wrote, “None of the red flags I have mentioned in the comments here have been ‘debunked.’ “

                      Where you logic fails is that “red flags” are only useful to logical thinking people when they are in fact proven to be true. Your red flag logic is a bit like the climate change alarmists logic “We have 23 wrong models, so we average them and we get the one that’s right?” Professor Bob Carter.

                      Innuendo “red flags” are almost always false flags.

                    • The concept you are illustrating is “confirmation bias,” which is the reverse of denial. The same people who saw nothing amiss in Obama secretly sending piles of money to Iran for a release of prisoners and the administration’s double-speak explanation once it was caught red-handed, now see proof of a treasonous quid pro quo in a disagreement over foreign policy strategy. It’s fascinating to observe.

                    • Chris

                      Zoltar,

                      Every red flag I’ve mentioned so far in this thread has been proven true. Russia did attempt to intervene in the election for the purposes of harming Trump’s opponent. Trump’s campaign did have multiple suspicious contacts with Russian agents and then lied about them, resulting in one guilty plea for lying to the FBI. Members of Trump’s campaign did try and get dirt on Hillary from the Russian government. Trump did spend his entire campaign praising Russia and Putin and drawing moral equivalences between our two governments. Trump has at various points denied Russia’s attack, opposed sanctions on Russia, and then refused to implement them.

                      These are facts, and these are red flags.

                      Jack,

                      It isn’t confirmation bias, it’s called noticing a pattern. I don’t know why you refuse to notice it. I think the fog of fake news–from both Trump and the media–has weakened your bullshit detector. That’s what fake news is designed to do. It dulls the senses. This is what Russia wanted. The media and Trump are complicit in fostering this environment.

                    • charlesgreen

                      Agree. It’s called disinformation, and it’s used to great effect by the Russians, both in their counter-intelligence operations and in their governing style.

                    • Chris,
                      The point of the analogy I presented blew completely over your head.

                      Never mind.

                    • Chris

                      The same people who saw nothing amiss in Obama secretly sending piles of money to Iran for a release of prisoners and the administration’s double-speak explanation once it was caught red-handed, now see proof of a treasonous quid pro quo in a disagreement over foreign policy strategy. It’s fascinating to observe.

                      I’ll thank you to address my argument without conflating it with the arguments of others. I have been abundantly clear that I don’t see Trump’s refusal to implement the sanctions on Russia as “proof” of anything. That said, I am appalled that you are not in the least bit troubled by his decision–call it a legitimate disagreement about policy if you wish, but given Trump’s obscene praise of Russia and its dictator during the election, you’re not in the slightest bit interested in what that disagreement is motivated by? If Obama had talked about the dictator of Iran the way Trump talks about Putin, would you not be troubled? It’s like you’re afraid to even criticize Trump’s stance on Russia lest you give any credibility to the Resistance. Maybe there was no quid pro quo at all, and Trump just loves dictators; is that not a problem in your view?

        • Chris wrote, “the arguments are, to paraphrase, ‘Threatening to impose sanctions is more of a deterrent than actually imposing sanctions,’ and ‘Shut up, it’s classified.’ “

          Chris wrote, “There is nothing wrong with doing so in a forum like this and when the intent is clearly to mock.”

          First; writing in a forum such as this is completely irrelevant you should follow the rules for writing no matter where you write, you are using that as an unethical rationalization.

          Second; paraphrase is NOT the same as mocking – you were wrong to use the word paraphrase when that’s NOT what you were doing.

          Conclusion; yet again we see that the self proclaimed English teacher doesn’t know what an English teacher should know to teach middle school students.

          • Chris

            Your repeated attacks on my ability to do my job are unfair, ignorant, and mean.

            I have already made it clear that I teach my students the formal rules of academic writing. I also teach them that we write differently for different purposes and audiences. Sarcastic quote marks are a common thing in Internet forums; my intent was clear to anyone reading my comment. You knew what I meant. Your petty need to set “traps” for me to catch me in some kind of gotcha, which you have already admitted, is embarrassing and adds nothing to these conversations.

            • Chris wrote, “Your repeated attacks on my ability to do my job are unfair, ignorant, and mean.”

              It’s unfair to point out your failures in knowledge that directly affect your ability to teach the children in your English classes properly; I think not.

              It’s ignorant to correctly state that your lack of knowledge of the English language is a detriment to your students and that your students are less likely to properly communicate with others using the rules of the English language as a result of your own ignorance; I think not.

              It’s mean for me to point out these things as bluntly as I do; that’s your opinion and you’re welcome to it. I’m not PC now and I won’t be PC for all my tomorrows so get over it and do better.

              Chris wrote, “I also teach them that we write differently for different purposes and audiences.”

              Chris, it is fully appropriate to teach your students to steer the content of what they write towards their known audience, but it is not appropriate to teach them that it’s okay to ignore the rules of the English language based on their audience, that’s literally enabling ignorance. Where do you get these ideas from?

              Chris wrote, “Your petty need to set “traps” for me to catch me in some kind of gotcha, which you have already admitted…”

              Sometimes your sincere lack of comprehension skills is absolutely astounding! Your statements that I was addressing in earlier comments appeared to be in contradiction with one another and I planted the seeds for you to figure that out on your own and I made it very obvious that that’s exactly what I was doing. It was not petty Chris, it was blunt (as usual for me) and it was intended to get you to learn from your own mistakes. Am I wrong to assume that you can still learn from your own mistakes or should I assume that your cranial capacity for learning has been dramatically hindered by your over-blown feelings of self-importance?

              • Chris

                There are multiple run-on sentences and a comma splice in that comment, Zoltar.

                I know the rules of formal academic English. I also know that using sarcastic quotation marks to set off intentionally mocking paraphrases is a fairly recent but commonly recognized feature of the English language that is growing in prominence. It would not be acceptable in academic writing, but is completely acceptable in an Internet forum.

                You didn’t know that, and are continuing to argue that this feature is not valid. You are a boring prescriptivist, and you are wrong.

                • Chris,
                  You need to get your head out of your ass and reread what I wrote.

                  I said nothing against your use of the quotes, in fact Chris, I supported your use of quotes in my comment below to Chris marschner, but of course you’ve completely ignored that and gone off on an absurd tangent that’s verifiably false – again.

                  I did write that your use of the word paraphrase was wrong – you didn’t paraphrase – you mocked. Paraphrase and mocking are NOT the same. If you don’t believe me, look up the definitions and put another wrinkle on your brain.

                  Please slither back under your rock Chris.

                  • Chris

                    It was a mocking paraphrase.

                    Obviously.

                    Why do you get so angry with me? Is everything OK?

                    • First you called it paraphrasing, next you called it mocking, now it’s mocking paraphrase. Do you bother to listen to your goal post moving comments before you post them? So Houdini, where are you going to magically move the goal posts to next?

                      Focus Chris.

                      My criticism about your comment was focused on your improper use of the word paraphrasing (you were in fact not paraphrasing you were mocking) you falsely claimed you were paraphrasing. I had no problem with your use of the quotes, and I said so, because you stated that you were paraphrasing.

                      Now stop all your nonsense.

                    • Chris

                      First you called it paraphrasing, next you called it mocking, now it’s mocking paraphrase. Do you bother to listen to your goal post moving comments before you post them?

                      There is no contradiction, and there is no goal post moving. Who hasn’t mocked someone else’s argument with a sarcastic paraphrase that paints their argument in the worst possible light? Rational, fair readers knew what I meant. You are neither when it comes to my posts; you admit you set traps for me. This is incredibly boring, and it is a trolling tactic. You don’t engage with my posts, you just pedantically nitpick. Find something better to do.

                    • Yes Chris routinely moves goalposts, this is an observed fact whether Chris believes it to be or not.

                      It’s really interesting how Chris randomly morphs the English language to fit his needs to justify his poor use of it. I honestly am not sure if it is intentional or just ignorance, the result is the same – misuse of the English language.

                      Here is the real definition of paraphrase.

                      PARAPHRASE
                      1. Express the meaning of, using different words, especially to achieve greater clarity.

                      2. A restatement of a text, passage, or work giving the meaning in another form.

                      3. A restatement of a text or passage giving the meaning in another form, as for clearness; rewording.

                      4. To state something written or spoken in different words, esp. in a shorter and simpler form to make the meaning clearer.

                      5. Express the meaning of (something written or spoken) using different words, especially to achieve greater clarity.

                      6. If you paraphrase someone or paraphrase something that they have said or written, you express what they have said or written in a different way.

                      7. A restatement of the meaning of a text or passage using other words.

                      Dictionary Sources:
                      Google, Merriam-Webster, Dictionary.com, Cambridge English Dictionary, Oxford Dictionary, Collins Dictionary, Wikipedia.

                      Please note that in those definitions there is nothing to imply that the actual meaning of the original statement is modified, twisted, morphed, etc. in anyway when paraphrased – the meaning remains the same.

                      The English teacher Chris intentionally twisted the meaning to mock, Chris did not paraphrase – or in his words “mocking paraphrase” . Chris is verifiably wrong, again, about specific usage details of the English language.

                      Side note directly to Chris: I really don’t give a damn if you choose to mock things by changing the meaning of some statement(s) with intentional hyperbole so you can smear others, it’s what you do, just call it what it is and not paraphrasing.

                      I cannot be clearer than this comment.

                      The end.

      • Chris marschner wrote, “Please don’t put quotation marks around phrases that you say are paraphrases.”

        That’s generally true; however, there’s nothing wrong with putting quotes around something you are paraphrasing as long as you tell people ahead of time that that’s what you’re doing.

        Read this comment and the two comment that follow.

  15. I wonder if any of the resident Leftists will actually address the conclusions and observations of the Speech instead of claiming it’s rhetoric is irresponsibly inflammatory and then diverting to Trump-Russia….

    Oh for the day…

    • Chris

      I wonder if any of the resident Leftists will actually address the conclusions and observations of the Speech instead of claiming it’s rhetoric is irresponsibly inflammatory and then diverting to Trump-Russia….

      His conclusions and observations are directly related to his false premise regarding Trump-Russia, and his conclusion is wrong precisely because it is hysterically over-the-top…so you’re basically asking us to criticize his argument by ignoring the two biggest things wrong with it.

      charles and I have shown that the investigation is necessary and based on legitimately suspicious activity, so his premise that it is entirely about toppling Trump is wrong. His conclusion that we are in a civil war is obviously over the top–you yourself say it would be more accurate to call it a “cold civil war,” which is also over the top, but at least somewhat better.

      No further criticism is needed.

  16. Steve-O-in-NJ

    Jesus Christ, look at this thread. I used to think that long threads were worth reading because they would have a lot of good stuff. I read this one and I’m waiting for someone to say “oh yeah, well your mother sucks a moose cock!”

    • charlesgreen

      I agree Steve-O. This thread damn near made me take a vacation for a month from the whole blog. I’m actually glad to hear you say much the same as I was feeling.
      Everybody step back from the cliff, take a deep breath, nothing to see here…

      • “Nothing to see here.”

        Talk about a phrase with a horrible history.

        • charlesgreen

          Educate me, please.

          When I hear “nothing to see here,” I think either of Men in Black or Naked Gun.

          Or, as per the Urban Dictionary definition:
          “nothing to see here
          Short for “nothing to see here, move along folks”. A ironic or sarcastic phrase uttered by a person who feels that he/she has detected a hidden, usually unpleasant or sinister, deeper meaning of a story or event that the reporter or authority on that event wishes to conceal possibly to avoid upsetting the general public.

          From the police phrase, “nothing to see here move along”. which is often said to a crowd of people that have collected at the scene of an accident or crime and who the officer wishes to disperse without communicating the cause of the crime or accident.

          The phrase is found in political commentary often on weblogs on hot button events like terrorism and political corruption.
          Susan: “I read in the paper that the FBI has determined that the man who shot up the Israeli airline ticket counter at LAX had no connection to terrorism.”

          Fred: “Yeah sure, nothing to see here.”

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