Inauguration Day Ethics Warm-Up, 1/20/2021: Welcome And Good Luck, President Biden!

Biden P

1. Too late! Fox News fired Chris Stirewalt yesterday. He is the veteran politics editor who was the prime onscreen face of the supposedly conservative-tilting network’s election night projections that Joseph Biden . had defeated President Trump in Arizona. Arnon Mishkin, a long-time Democratic Party pollster, was Fox News decision desk chief for the 2020 presidential election. He called the state of Arizona and its 11 electoral votes for Joe Biden at 11:20 p.m. Eastern time on election night, not long after the polls closed. Fox news anchor Bill Hemmer, standing at the Fox News election map, expressed surprise. “What is happening here? Why is Arizona blue?” he asked. “Did we just call it? Did we just make a call in Arizona?”

Stirewalt quickly came onscreen to defend the network’s decision, explaining that vote margins were too great in Arizona for the Republican candidate to overcome. He assured viewers that “We’re going to be careful, cautious, and earnest,” adding that “Arizona is doing just what we expected it to do and we remain serene and pristine. He dismissed voter fraud claims, “Lawsuits, schmawsuits — we haven’t seen any evidence yet that there’s anything wrong.” Mishkin also came on camera later to defend the call. I found him supercilious and obnoxious.

Reflecting on the decision to fire Stirewalt, the usual media suspects are pointing out that in the end, Fox’s call was correct. That’s pure moral luck. Fox News was the first news outlet to call Arizona for Biden, anmd when your brand is the news network that balances the hard progressive, Democratic, anti-Trump bias of 95% of the news media, that’s a stupid unforced error. Stirewalt has to be aware of the company’s brand and best interests. Why jump the gun to call a state Trump probably needed to win? Furthermore, Stirewalt’s “Arizona is doing just what we expected it to do” sounded like spin, because it was. The polls, including Fox’s, had already been proven wildly off, and the voting “expectations” were based on polling.

It would not have cost Fox anything to wait to call Arizona, especially since networks declaring winners in states is subjective, unnecessary, and arguably manipulative. Regular Fox viewers were alienated, and this was predictable. President Trump denounced the networkand urged supporters to watch Newsmax and One America News instead. He should not have done that, but it was also predictable. Stirewalt was substantially responsible for losing Fox News viewers and revenue, and accomplished nothing.

He deserved to be fired. I would have fired him too.

2. “Nah, there’s no mainstream media bias!” “Biden landing at Joint Base Andrews now. I have chills,” New York Times editor Lauren Wolfe said in a tweet yesterday with a screenshot of a report from CNN showing Biden’s plane landing. Well of course she has chills, since she and her paper have been trying to defeat, then destroy, then defeat again Biden’s predecessor, and finally did it. Wolf’s “chills” were hardly surprising; what was surprising was that she would be so foolish as to admit it publicly, but then we have been seeing a lot of this lately. The AUC (that’s “Axis of Unethical Conduct” for the uninitiated, the “resistance,” Democrats and news media) has become careless and cocky after Biden’s election, and has let its masks down repeatedly, not that the face it has exposed should have shocked anyone paying attention for the past four years. You know…

phantom-of-the-opera

Wolfe was immediately mocked and excoriated on social media, so she returned with several tweets denying any bias and claiming that she was just naturally exited about a historic moment. Riiiiight. Among her tweets,

  • “I’m shocked that you all don’t feel the importance. Such historical events are deeply moving and thrilling. This attempt to shit on me is nothing more than shortsighted presumption”
  • “So a bunch of people think me being excited for the transfer of power tomorrow is somehow disgusting/idiotic/against journalism. It’s a shame. We should all be interested on historical moments”
  • (to Brit Hume) “Really, Brit? You’ve never felt excited at historical moments? Stop inciting your fans who are coming after me with threats. This was an innocuous tweet and you know it.”

Of course, it was a biased tweet that exposed her and the Times’ unethical bias that screams out from the paper every single day, and she knows it. Wolfe eventually deleted the tweets, which are similarly self-indicting.

3. Speaking of the Times, the apparently approved AUC disinformation regarding claims  of voter fraud in the election is that it is”baseless.” It is in today’s Times again. Such claims may be wrong, but they are definitely not baseless; that characterization is false. There is a basis for suspicion about the election, ergo a basis for claims that there was fraud. The simple fact of mail-in ballots is a basis for such claims: before the pandemic, there was near universal consensus that mail-in ballots were too vulnerable to fraud, and history shows that if a system is vulnerable to fraud in an important election, there will be fraud. There is a mountain of circumstantial evidence that the vote totals are not as they should be, and it is not a lie to make that observation, nor unreasonable to base a belief that voter fraud occurred on the basis of such evidence.

Indeed, the fact that the AUC so vociferously denies irregularities is itself a legitimate basis to suspect voter fraud.

4. Oh-oh. Republicans are acting like Democrats in Wyoming. The Republican Party Central Committee in Carbon County, Wyoming  censured Rep. Liz Cheney for voting to impeach President Trump. The censure resolution passed in a unanimous vote by the 45-membe committee, and included a demand that the Bush VP’s daughter appear before the committee to defend her actions.

“Our representative did not represent our voice,” said Carbon County GOP Chairman Joey Correnti IV, who presented the resolution to the central committee at a Saturday meeting where the vote took place.

No elected Representative has an obligation to take orders from anyone, including her party and her constituency. Being elected to Congress means that an individual is pledged to act as he or she believes is in the best interests of citizens and the nation. I think Cheney’s vote was foolish, legally ignorant and dangerous, but not because the Republican Party Central Committee in Carbon County wanted her to vote otherwise.

5. Why Joe Biden can’t put us back into the Paris Accords on “Day One”...we were never in the Paris Accord legally in the first place.

The United Nations describes the virtue-signalling sham ( the United States leads the world in reducing carbon emissions while not being part of it) as “a legally binding international treaty on climate change.” The  Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties states that a treaty is  “an international agreement concluded between [two or more] States in written form and governed by international law.” But the U.S. Constitution states clearly in Article II, Section 2, Clause 2 that the President “shall have Power, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, to make Treaties, provided two-thirds of the Senators present concur.” Barack Obama never received such consent. He unilaterally and illegally signed the United States onto the treaty during the last months of the 2016 presidential campaign, knowing—he’s supposedly a constitutional scholar, remember—that as a treaty it had to go to the Senate for ratification. Instead, Obama avoided referring to the agreement as a treaty so he could disingenuously maintain that Senate ratification wasn’t constitutionally mandated. He played a similar game when the U.S. was illegally bombing Libya.

Predicts pundit Matt Margolis,

“…the moment Biden illegally gets us back into the Paris climate treaty, Republicans will mount a legal challenge to it, and the Supreme Court will rightfully strike it down.”

Incidentally, is there any question that if President Trump insisted that he had committed the U.S. to a treaty without Senate approval, the Democrats would have impeached him for it? If they had, ironically, they would have been on far firmer ground than the impeachments they did pass.

70 thoughts on “Inauguration Day Ethics Warm-Up, 1/20/2021: Welcome And Good Luck, President Biden!

  1. I’m always on board with a clean slate. Can’t wait for your traditional posting of the inauguration speech (I think that’s a thing?) Let’s see where it goes and give him a fair shake, starting today. How long will it last? Who knows, but a fair shake is appropriate. 12 hours? 12 days? 12 weeks? Who knows, but let’s attempt to overlook petty slights and weigh his actions (political & cabinet appointments aside) but the actions of those appointed being fair game.

  2. 5. What about the Keystone pipeline? Which he intends to do the opposite and withdraw from. I’m fairly certain pipe is laid. I know it’s not on the coasts, but it definitely has an impact on many, many people. If it is cancelled the pipeline will likely get laid elsewhere, quietly, and go around Nebraska. Can he even do this? It’s a contractual agreement between the pipeline company and landowners. Can the president void and cancel business contracts made between two parties with an executive order?

    • Remember, laws are for little people and Republicans. Obama did it without a treaty, Biden can too. He can make laws as well. Remember, DACA never passed Congress, but Trump couldn’t repeal it. The courts treated it as a law.

    • KXL is dead, and we’ve been going back and forth over it’s corpse for 10 years. Alberta just flushed billions on it, and careers were destroyed over it. Once it became obvious that KXL was doomed to fail, Canada started building TMX from Northern Alberta to Vancouver. Once that’s done (86% and counting), Canada will be able to ship oil internationally without having to worry about the whims of American politics.

      It’s hard to imagine a case where politics did more damage without doing any amount of good. The oil might not flow through your back yard, but it’s going to flow, so the environmentalists are still salty. We get to ship our oil without paying American fees and levis, but we had to lay a whole new set of pipe, and it goes to the wrong ocean. If anyone sees a legitimate up and up, I’m open to hear it.

      • HT,

        Well, in the silver lining rationalization, canceling KXL helps the refinery where I work because we expected Canadian oil prices to increase once all the Gulf Coast refineries could easily import far more Canadian oil. So our 80,000 BPD outfit benefits… Or we would if gasoline and diesel crack spreads weren’t so abysmal right now.

      • If you’ve ever wondered at the possibility of Canada having an opportunity to eye-ball superpower status, look no further than global warming. Canada won’t reach “super power” status any time soon, but global warming opening up the great “northwest passage” to year-round shipping which will reduce the the Western Europe – Asia routes by 7,000 miles (or worse by 8,000 miles through Russian arctic waters.

        Not to mention the arable land that will open up.

        Canada stands to benefit significantly from the medium to long range future.

        So does Russia…though it also will open Russia to a weakness.

        Imagine the land rush in a century as overpopulated India and China and unemployed middle eastern men look to the vast emptiness of a warming Russia…

      • The pipe is already in the ground in minimum phase one through several states. What will they do? Remove it? It’s a little different to say no before anything is built. Apparently he isn’t super concerned about union jobs or employment or even the environment or international relations with Canada after all. I do believe there’s already talk of sanctions. Too bad they didn’t put it into the trade agreement. That TransCanada line is taking forever. The Liberty line is stalled out due to Covid. It’s supposed to start this spring or summer. I suppose it’s a bonus where the pipe is kept in storage, maybe.

    • I’ve never understood the opposition to the Keystone XL. The existing Keystone is in terrible shape and leaks a lot, wreaking environmental havoc.

      Naturally, the Democrats want to keep the broken one, and prevent a replacement from being built….

  3. #4. Full disclosure, Carbon County is my home county here in Wyoming. I don’t know Joey Correnti, though. Maybe I should get a little more involved in local politics…

    I know that Cheney came under a great deal of fire from House Republicans. In comparison, to have the Carbon Country GOP committee censure her, though, is pretty amusing. We have maybe 16,000 people in Carbon County. A censure from our county is like getting barked at by a chihuahua.

    • On the other hand it’s not like Wyoming has 40 million people in it. 16k is a measurable fraction of the total population, albeit a small fraction.

      When I heard Cheney was going to vote to impeach, my initial thought was that she was safe politically. I mean, it’s not like Wyoming is going to elect a Democrat to Congress are you? She’d have to be primaried, and that seemed unlikely. That’s still my thought, but I also think it may cost her in her ambitions to leadership in the party going forward. Hard to stomach the GOP choosing as Speaker someone who had voted to impeach their own president.

      • Since the newspaper in Rawlins is terrible, I learned just a little bit ago from the Federalist that there is already a primary challenger. There are also people trying to get signatures on a petition for a recall, not that Wyoming can actually recall its representative.

        I certainly will not vote for her next primary. Heck, if I thought I stood a chance, I’d try to run again her.

        • I was rather disgusted by our last Republican primary for the House. I realized that I actually could have beaten the two frontrunners. OK, me or any rational person. The eventual winner basically said “You have to vote for me, the NRA said so”. Like any gun owners actually care what the NRA has thought for the last decade. She basically was a Democrat trying to be what Democrats think Republicans are. Think Stephen Colbert on the Colbert Report, but cringier and more offensively stereotypical.

  4. In the life, I retired from I had a self-contained behaviors classroom for the school district. I had two items posted on my whiteboard. The first was “If you cannot control your behaviors someone else will. Don’t make me Mr. Someone else.” The second was simple: “Good behaviors are rewarded and bad behaviors are not.” After four years of – I will use the term – AUC – we now have unity as the word du jour. So I am supposed to reward that? I was posting today on my view that Trump had my basket filled about 75%. I thought under the circumstances he did a very good job. Well – the response was the usual. I am a “Racist,” “Nativist,” “Fascist,” etc., etc., etc. If that is what passes for “unity” count me out.

  5. Why can’t Joe walk without looking like a robot? Why does he always start walking in the wrong direction? Who’s really running the country? The Interagency Consensus?

  6. I think the so-called occupation of the Capitol needs to be added to the list of plans to remove Trump. The Dems and the media have blown that event up into the second coming of 9/11. They’re using it as a pretext to have Trump barred from holding any future office. I’m beginning to think he’ll be convicted in the Senate as soon as the article of impeachment is read into the record. They might not even bother to do that. They may just do a voice vote and declare it two thirds and then ban Trump by another voice vote. Incredible.

    • I assume that, in violation of all precedent, the Senate will adopt some sort of streamlined procedure that prohibits Trump from making a defense. The last thing they want is him to start introducing evidence of voter fraud in a nationally televised hearing.

  7. 2) It’ll be awesome watching the MSM get into vapors when Trump doesn’t duck out of the public eye like Republican Presidents have traditionally done and Democrat presidents generations past used to do in the name of the Republic moving on.

    Watching them scream about Trump needing to butt out while perennially praising Obama, Clinton and Carter for often sticking their noses into Republican Presidential decisions will be a sight to behold.

  8. Considering Obama’s war policies, Biden is going to have to prove he’s not going to do the same.

    Implying blacks who don’t know if they should vote for him aren’t black, he’s going to have to prove he’s not a bigot.

    Under Obamacare our health insurance went up 6000%. Biden will have to prove he actually cares about health costs.

    Biden thinks giving children puberty blockers for aesthetic purposes is perfectly fine. He has to prove he actually cares about kids.

    In all these instances and more, I’ll believe he has integrity when I see it. I won’t hold my breath.

  9. All things considered, Biden probably has the easiest transition into the Presidency than anyone in a long time. He has been in Washington for almost 5 decades.

    If he learned to play nice in that time, he might be able to work across the aisle.

    But right now, he does not even have to do that.

    His biggest challenge in this position is likely his declining health.

    Second biggest challenge could be the mass of Hondurans making their way north. He will outrage people no matter what he does. And, that is a problem he caused.

    I mean, who are those Hondurans going to vote for in 2024 if Biden breaks his campaign promise not to deport them.

    -Jut

    • I can’t wait for the media to blame Trump for the new caravans coming through Central America and Mexico. One of those Honduran fellows was interviewed and stated that Biden will be granting them amnesty and asylum so they can fulfill their dreams.

      jvb

    • Re: his declining health. Francis Menton has dubbed our first sitting animatronic president “Madame Tussaud Joe.” Works for me.

  10. I’m skeptical, but I’m determined to not complain about irrelevancies. Genuine policy differences and real outrages only, which I expect there will be plenty.

    I’m not encouraged by the facebook feeds, though. Not a picture of Joe Biden out there, but plenty of Kamala Harris. A black/asian/woman Vice President is a big deal historically, but it’s also not going to help dispel the fears of a Harris/Biden presidency, either.

    • Not to mention the GIFs showing her doing a karate kick and putting her bare sole right in the viewer’s face and something to the effect of “Bitch, get lost!”

  11. Totes adorbs how the nation’s hyper-leftists are cheering about ending Trump’s fascist regime…

    while their savior is sworn in to office in the presence of of 25,000 soldiers and virtually 0 private citizens. An administration who will shortly oversee a government controlled by a single party that will have a de facto state media narrating events and a network of massive monopolistic corporations beholden to it’s policies and enthralled by it’s politics.

    In a country where advancement in education, corporations, law firms and pop culture require ideological declarations tantamount to loyalty oaths to the single political party.

    Well done guys…way to drive the fascists from our shores…

    • I have the sense that the 25,000 national guard soldiers positioned in and around D.C. was not intended to quell riots but to show who and what is in charge. The message is: “We are in charge. Do what we tell you do or else.”

      jvb

    • It’s interesting that part of that video was talking about getting back to “undeniable truth and beating lies and stamping out their power over these individual, radicalized individuals” but yet anytime you bring up actual facts that contradict the false propaganda that spewed by the left leaning media the response is to attack the messenger.

      President Biden emphasized the word truth five times in his speech and I’ve got to ask, is the unsupportable truth, propaganda, that has been spewed out by the left leaning media the “truth” that Biden want’s to push or is it the truth that is actually supported by facts and evidence? We’ll soon see.

      Biden stated in his speech “I will be a President for all Americans, all Americans. And I promise you I will fight for those who did not support me as for those who did.” and yet one of the first things that he chose to do was to intentionally alienate a large segment of the population by reversing some of President Trump’s immigration orders. Illegal immigration is a HUGE issue and the President just built a political wall between him and those that didn’t support him because of his view on illegal immigration.

      I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again; don’t pay much attention to the propaganda styled rhetoric that comes out of President Biden’s mouth, pay attention to his actions.

  12. If you had to make predictions for how the next 4 years will shake out, what would you predict?

    I’m going to go out on a limb and make the following predictions:

    1. The attempt to post-presidentially impeach Trump will fail, but only just. The votes to convict will come from the just-reelected or the 100% safe, and I don’t think there are 17 of them. When it becomes evident that it’s going to fall short, the Senate will wrap the vote up quickly, since they are otherwise wasting time.

    2. Biden will end up with egg on his face one way or another early on from this pending “caravan.” If he lets them in he loses the center and hardens the right, If he turns them away or delays them he is going to get abuse from the left. This will become a perennial problem with him just as it did with Obama, as red states battle him over resettlement of immigrants.

    3. State attacks on Trump will fizzle out as it becomes evident they are taking the focus off the new administration.

    4. The pandemic will not get any better anytime soon, as vaccinations go slower than expected and new strains emerge. The death toll will continue to climb. The new administration will, of course, attempt to blame it on Trump, but as the spring does not get appreciably better and another summer’s worth of everything gets canceled that will start to ring hollow.

    5. The market will sag and eventually settle into a much lower level than it was at under Trump during the non-pandemic years.

    6. Gas prices will start to go up above $3/gallon.

    7. The Trump tax cuts will expire and a new increase will be passed. Everyone will feel the pinch.

    8. A single payer health care bill will pass the house, but fall short in the Senate.

    9. Crime will continue to rise and property values will start to sink in the major cities as the defunding of the police starts to take effect. Arrests will also go down as there will be fewer officers making them in the first place and those who remain will just cross the street or look the other way.

    10. New York will suffer especially as offices go unrented and Broadway and the other venues remain dark. When they do finally reopen, which MIGHT be just in time for Christmas 2021, attendance will be anemic, as fewer people will want to spend the money or take the risk. Unfortunately, no Giuliani will emerge to push DeBlasio’s far-left successor aside, as many NYers vote with their feet.

    11. DC and PR statehood will also emerge in the House, but fall short, as neither of them actually want it.

    12. Attempts at rooting out white supremacy will start to be cast as a war on whiteness.

    13. Pursuit of the militia will turn out to be a dud, as not enough of them have really done anything for criminal charges to stick.

    14. A new assault weapons ban will emerge, but, like the one passed in 1994, will contain a 10-year sunset clause.

    15. Kamala Harris will become the glamor face of the administrations, but not really achieve much.

    16. The governors who pushed lockdown will ultimately pay for it at the ballot box, except for Cuomo, who, unlike his dad, WILL get a fourth term.

    17. One or both houses of Congress will flip in 2022. Nancy Pelosi has already said this will be her last term as speaker.

    18. Biden will become unpopular in his second year as it will become increasingly obvious that he is not up to the job.

    19. The media will try to prop Biden up, but few will buy it.

    20. Hollywood will continue to produce crap, but fewer will care, as theaters stay dark.

    • New York will suffer especially as offices go unrented and Broadway and the other venues remain dark. When they do finally reopen, which MIGHT be just in time for Christmas 2021, attendance will be anemic, as fewer people will want to spend the money or take the risk.

      I have grave doubts about this prediction.

      Governor Cuomo does not want to be primaried.

    • Now do your predictions on foreign policy.

      Bad nation-states always love a Democrat administration.

      Europe will get to tell itself it’s managing world affairs through soft power cooperation with a soft power administration in the United States all to placate itself during its palliative care phase of its civilization so as not to have to confront real dangerous truths of its decline and the hard truths of bad actors in the world that must be addressed before they eventually become so powerful addressing them will be painful.

    • 1. While there is a pro-Trump component of the Republican party, is there enough fervor for “unsafe” Democrats or primary-able Republicans to be nervous about voting to convict?

      2. I think the American tradition of short memory will protect Biden here. He’ll “lose the center” but it’s still 2 years before the mid terms AND 4 before the next election he has to personally worry about.

      3. Do you mean federal “The State” level pursuit of punishing Trump or the individual States?

      4. This is accurate – the pandemic will not get any better anytime soon, as vaccinations go slower than expected and new strains emerge. The death toll will continue to climb…… But nobody will notice because life will go on as the media will run interference and the most insurrectionist of the Democrat states that used the Pandemic to harm as many of their citizens as possible will no longer do any of that so Biden doesn’t get the blame.

      5. This is accurate I think.

      6. All energy costs will go up a long with cost of living. Less-well to do will be hardest hit. But no one will hear about any of this.

      7. Same as 6.

      8. Do you think such a push will happen sooner or later?

      9. Reasonable prediction.

      10. Good.

      11. DC wants it. Puerto Rico would be hard to guess. Just enough local fervor could be manufactured to make it happen. But there’d be some Constitutional hurdles I think for DC and a hard sell in the Senate for Puerto Rico.

      12. “Attempts at rooting out white supremacy will start to be cast as a war on whiteness.” That may be how the beleaguered will characterize it, but rooting out white supremacy will ultimately be the “noble” cover story for dismantling the remaining vestiges of American culture and the Constitutional Order…that is the Trojan Horse for destroying the Republic. And enough squishes will go along with it that it wouldn’t matter.

      13. This will just roll on under the efforts of #12.

      14. How soon? I think America will “conveniently” suffer another mass casualty shooting and then there will be enough fervor to pass something.

      15. Yep, she’ll be the empty image of “the future is here” messaging.

      16. Will they suffer for it? They’re about to un-lockdown everything now that the harm they inflicted on their own citizens was thoroughly blamed on Trump enough to get the Biden win..

      17. Reasonable prediction given American history. But doubtful…mail in voting is here to stay and its corruptibility guarantees one party rule from here on out unless there is literally a massive wave that even cheating can’t stop. But that wave better be massive.

      18. But no one will talk about it.

      19. Enough people will buy it.

      20. Of course.

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