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TGIF – February 22, 2019

Look out, Phil.

While watching the snow pile up, one thought comes to mind. Wringing Punxsutawney Phil’s furry little neck.

Actually if you live in a high desert state, snow is a good thing, especially if you use irrigation water.

That doesn’t make it any nicer to deal with wind driven snow and skating rink roads.

Somehow though, it does set the mood for what has been a particularly nasty week of news.

First we have a narcissistic little creep who seems to think that making more money in a week than many people make in a year means he is somehow being disrespected.

With any luck Jussie Smollett can get free room and board for a few years.  Maybe that will make him appreciate what he had a bit more.

Then we have lachrymose Congress members upset because the President is trying to shut off the holes in the border because they wouldn’t, while at the same time we have a football team owner accused of partaking of the favors of sex-trafficked  “masseurs.”

And Andrew McCabe whose story changes every time he is interviewed. This guy changes his story more often than a fashion model changes outfits at a runway show.

And of course there is the Socialist New York congress-girl who is too dense to understand that the billionaires she hates generate jobs with their billions. Better no jobs at all than Amazon, right?

We could go on. And on and on and on, but you get the point.

There are some weeks when you should just turn off the tube and read a good book.

This was one of them.

Commentary on the news.

Forgiveness or foolishness?

It really doesn’t matter where Hoda Muthana was born, or at least it shouldn’t.

What does matter is that she didn’t have this epiphany that she should be able to repatriate to the U.S. until ISIS had been essentially evicted from their caliphate.

The closest she should be able to get to the U.S. is a room in Cuba. She can talk with the FBI from there.

In this case forgiveness isn’t divine, it’s plain damn foolishness.

We understand that she has parents and a family who were probably devastated when she joined ISIS, and that she has a child who was not born a jihadist, and we feel for them.

That still does not absolve her from four years of calling for jihad against Americans.

Perhaps she is repentant, but if she is just looking for a place to light so she doesn’t wind up dead, she could just as easily recruit for ISIS as speak against them.

Better that she stay away.

An actor he ain’t.

Jussie Smollett supposedly concocted his little drama because he was dissatisfied with his $65,000 per episode salary.

Based on how well he played his role in his made-up hate crime drama, he’s overpaid.

This sounded fishy from the beginning. Who would leave a clothesline “noose” around his neck for any amount of time for the police to see? Wouldn’t you want that thing off as soon as you could remove it?

Only in tinsel town.

Still not holding our breath.

We’ll believe the Mueller investigation is wrapped up when he hands it to AG Barr. Until then, we’ll keep breathing.

 

It’s not Trump’s money, guv.

Note to California Governor Newsom…the money you don’t want to return is American taxpayer money.  It wasn’t a personal loan from the President.

Putting aside the wrangling over the border security funds, the question is, since some of the high speed rail project has been built, should California get to keep the money fronted by the Feds?

Most building contractors would tell you “no”, based on how banks treat construction loan advances.

Let’s say you want to build a house or an apartment building. The bank agrees to lend you “X” amount of money for your costs, and advances you say 15% of the funds so you can buy materials and begin the project.

Partway though you determine you can’t sell the building after it is done, so you cancel the project.

Does the bank just let you keep the money it advanced, as a gift or something?

Not just “no” but hell no.

It’s not the taxpayers’ fault that your high speed rail project is a massive boondoggle.

This cavalier attitude toward government funding is typical of many politicians. They seem to think that it’s Monopoly money.

A lot of taxpayers worked very hard for that money, and they have a right to demand that it be used responsibly.

Give it back, Governor.  If your state got ripped off by the contractors, then get it back from them. It was not a gift from us to you.

One more to go?

Well, Bernie “I’m the official Socialist” Sanders is in the race now, so all we need for a full house is perennial election loser Joe “Hands” Biden.

Others may decide to give the race a go, but the “stars” are pretty much out there.

Just as he did last time, Sanders is running as an independent or third-party candidate but kind of within the Democratic Party. Maybe that helps him, but he, like Biden is still an old, white male.

So is he electable?  Judging from the amount of money he raised upon declaring, he certainly still has his base.

Biden on the other hand, while he gives every indication he’s going to pull the trigger, has a bit of built-in baggage in the MeToo era.

Throughout his career, he has been known to be very “hands-on” with women, some of whom have found it objectionable.

He is also not a native Socialist. Indeed his very appeal is that he may be able to woo the centrist Democrat voters.

In any case the opposition field is slowly firming up for the 2020 election. Ranging from the nearly unknown John Delaney to Sanders and Biden, and encompassing the obligatory women and people of color, the campaign field is just about ready to start trying to pick each other off.

That will certainly do for now as the electoral spectator sport, at least until after the primaries, which begin in New Hampshire February 11 of next year.

It will be interesting to see just how far left the voters decide to go, before the main event starts.

Will Barr clean up the DOJ?

William Barr certainly has the past credentials to be the Attorney General.

He also has a long history of working closely with many of the people who apparently tried, and may still be trying to effect a “soft coup.”

Many of those people are no longer employed by DOJ and/or the FBI, but Mueller and Rosenstein are still there.

Based on Andrew McCabe’s “60 Minutes” book promotion interview, there was and is a pool of rot within the DOJ and the FBI.

It remains to be seen if Barr will do more than give a “don’t be naughty” speech to the employees, or actually  take action against the people who sought to invalidate the votes of 63 million people.

As we have said many times, the reason Donald Trump became President was because people instinctively felt the government was not just ineffective but corrupt. Nothing that has happened since the election has disabused them of that idea.

Trump certainly hasn’t been the perfect President, whatever that is.

Still, one wonders if he had received even a tenth of the support he should have been entitled to, how many fewer malaprops would he have made?

And regardless of those, he has done what few politicians even try to do and that is of course, keep the promises he made to the best of his ability.

It’s nearly impossible to take anything McCabe says as truthful, but the President may have even had Cabinet members working against him.

Democrats seem to be convinced Trump will not win a second term, though they have been known to be wrong before.

If that happens, as one person put it, if a Democrat or Socialist wins “What’s good for the goose is good for the gander.”

Or, what goes around, comes around.

TGIF – February 15, 2019

Can the FCC stop robocalls?

We sure hope so. Like a lot of people, we no longer answer our phone directly, due to these time-wasting, annoying and often illegal calls.

How many times have you scrambled to get your phone out or run for your landline only to catch the last 10 words of a robocall?   Arghhh!

And that’s not even counting the amount of money these calls have scammed out of people who still haven’t learned to hang up.

And to legitimate businesses who are too cheap to pay an employee, you will never get a return call from us, when all we get is 5 numbers out of your robo-message.

So, we wish Ajit Pai success in his campaign. We aren’t holding our collective breath, but good luck anyway.

 Why the Emergency Declaration? 

You have only to listen to Bobby Frank O’Rourke to know why.

Mr. O’Rourke was captured on film declaring he’d be just fine with taking down “some” of the existing border barriers.

Perhaps we could start with those in the sanctuary state of California. Tijuana is probably tired of feeding and housing Central America’s migrant population anyway.

Democrats and even some Republicans are all in a lather about the “precedent” the President is setting.

Where do they think Trump got his precedent from? Maybe from the dozen or more times former President Obama did it? Or Bush, Reagan or Clinton before him?

No one railed about them “setting a precedent.”

Several politicians and commentators have said he should have just sneaked it through, as Obama did with the $1.7 billion dollars he appropriated for Iran.

That isn’t this President’s style.

You can argue that by deliberately daring the Democrats to take him to court he is “creating chaos.”

Actually he’s forcing the Bobby Frank’s of this government to come right out and admit they are for no borders at all.

The President has learned a lot from his time in Washington.  So far he hasn’t embraced sneaky.

 And finally, a miss to Lara Trump

The President’s daughter-in-law reportedly advised him to get a dog because it would look good politically.

No one should own any kind of pet unless they want it. That’s a part of why shelters are overcrowded with animals their owners didn’t want.

And no one who voted for Trump gives a damn why he doesn’t have a dog. Maybe he or his wife or son is allergic, or maybe he thinks he has enough to do without having to care for a dog. Who cares?

Sorry Lara, but an unwanted pet is ignored, under-socialized and they know when they aren’t wanted. That’s not the definition of a good home, no matter how well-fed and physically well cared for the animal might be.

Of borders and butterflies.

The news is that President Trump will sign the bill working its way through Congress.  Hopefully he will attach a rider to that but still, he’s going to sign it, to avoid another government shutdown.

He recently said the White House legal team was going to look for “land mines.”

They won’t need bifocals to find them, and one of them is the requirement that the “wall” not be built on any national wildlife refuges, including the National Butterfly Center, which is near McAllen, Texas.

Actually there are about half-a-dozen such refuges, and in the bill he is prohibited from building in any of them.

That’s likely to make his border barrier look more like a dotted line, but then, what’s more important, butterflies or people?

Obviously, the President got himself into this by partially shutting down the government in the first place. That’s water under the bridge at this point. It seems like every administration has to learn this lesson for themselves, and he isn’t the first to come out on the wrong end of those decisions.

Sans that faux pas, he could just tell Congress to shove all 1159 pages where the sun don’t shine, but that still wouldn’t get us one more foot of protected border. At the very least HJ Res. 31 gets us updated equipment at the ports of entry so maybe it isn’t a total loss.

That leaves us with the national emergency declaration. Reports say he will make such a declaration.

It remains to be seen how many more feet of barrier that will get us.

The operative part of all of this is whether we see any new barrier construction, and whether the structure is constructed in a way that deters climbing or people perching on it like migrating starlings in spring.

It would behoove him to tout every foot of new wall, because come November 2020, that’s going to be the yardstick by which his success is measured.