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On the road, again.

Apparently, the Clintons are broke again. What else could account for them taking their nostalgia act on the road, allowing people to revel in their dual political history at up to $750 a pop?

For that we will also get a chance for Hillary to tell us that civility depends on electing Democrats.

Wow.  We can’t wait.

No, really, we can’t wait, so we will move on to things at least semi-relevant to current affairs.

Take foreign affairs, particularly concerning the speculation that the Saudi government may have killed a Washington Post journalist, Jamal Kashoggi.

This may not seem like a big deal to most Americans, but if the story is true, the Saudis may have just put themselves on the list with other persona non grata nations.

Given that the Saudis were at least keeping up appearances of being one of our few Middle East allies, that has serious repercussions for our foreign policy.

Not that the news surprises many of us.

Given that nearly all the 9/11 terrorists were of Saudi origin, as was Osama bin Laden, the Saudis have at the very least a checkered past regarding Westerners, or people supporting the west.

The President has noted that the incident is still being scrutinized, but should the 15 men identified as a Saudi government sanctioned assassination team be linked to Kashoggi’s disappearance, the U.S. would have little choice but to join in condemning the actions.

The Middle East has long been a thorn in America’s side, but given its international importance and propensity for tribal warfare, it also isn’t a region we can just wash our hands of and allow it to foment international unrest.

With all the folderol over Kavanaugh and the upcoming midterms, this story will probably simmer on the back burner, but at some point the U.S. is going to have to reconsider its ties to the Saudi royal family, should the allegations of state-sponsored murder prove to be true.

Checkmate.

As Brett Kavanaugh begins his duties as the newest Justice of the Supreme Court, the media seemed poised to continue speculating and condemning him over his confirmation process.

Leave it to a lady to upend their applecart.

At approximately 10 a.m. Eastern time the White House announced the resignation of U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, effective at year’s end,  leaving the media completely flummoxed.

While it’s too early to report all of the media and politicians reaction to the news, it was interesting to see all the news and opinion folks scratching their heads and trying to figure out how the White House slipped this one by them for a full six months.

Indeed, some seemed almost insulted that no one had leaked anything about it.

Maybe that’s because only two people knew about it; the President and Ambassador Haley.

Democrats, starting with Bob Menendez, immediately tried to put a negative spin on the news, falling back on the tired old saw about chaos in the Trump Administration.

That’s belied by the fact that Ambassador Haley had made the President aware of her plans six months ago.

Since no one had anything else to report about it, the speculations were running rampant.

Why did she announce so far ahead of her last day, the pundits mused. Was it because of the Kavanaugh debacle? Is she ill, someone else asked. Oh, it’s because she and John Bolton don’t get along, someone else prattled.

Others thought that she should have waited until after the election.

Did it occur to anyone that maybe she wanted to give the administration time and the freedom to interview a few people to try to fill her shoes without having the media running around with their noses up everyone’s behind?

Notice we said try to fill her shoes.

The President called her effect on the position glamorizing, but others would say prestigious.

Not that there aren’t plenty of capable prospects, but Ambassador Haley definitely put her own stamp on the job.

Nikki Haley is no one’s lap-sitting kittycat. Frank and outspoken, she shows a rare talent for supporting and faithfully communicating the President’s foreign policies without ever seeming to be anyone’s lackey.

During the Oval Office sendoff, Haley made it a point to mention that she would not be a presidential candidate in 2020, and would support President Trump in his re-election bid.

She said nothing about 2024 however. Maybe because that’s a eon in political time. Maybe it’s because she herself isn’t sure she wants to contend with the nastiness of another campaign, or maybe, as she says, she wants to put her family front and center for now, as she has two children who are getting close to their college years.

It’s true that 2024 is a long way off, but if we are to have a female president, we could sure do a lot worse than Nikki Haley.

Backlash.

Just 29 days until the  election, and the Democrats are still milking the Kavanaugh controversy.

Apparently forgetting that it was a Democrat who demanded another “investigation”, or actually a background check, which they said then should take only a few days, Nancy  Pelosi is now demanding that the most recent check be publicized, because it only took a few days.

While it would be interesting to read, all background checks are generally considered confidential personnel matters under both state and Federal laws.

Not that a little thing like the law matters to Nancy Pelosi.  After all, the way she sees it, laws are only for Republicans.

She and her fellow Democrats do want the controversy, because she knows that if the FBI runs true to form, her FOIA request won’t be processed for weeks or even months.

The President’s comment ““You wouldn’t hand matches to an arsonist,” rings true with many Americans.

When you get away from Cuckooville, i.e. Washington and Hollywood, most people were  somewhat less than impressed with the well-trained and rehearsed left-wing demonstrators interrupting the vote for Kavanaugh,  taking over the steps in front of the Supreme Court or screaming like possessed banshees in the halls of Congress.

Even people who were initially inclined to believe that Dr. Ford was at least sincere in her belief that Kavanaugh groped her at a party 35 years ago have come to think that at best she was exploited by Democrats, and at worst, that she is just another loony leftist like Julie Swetnik hired to cause trouble.

Mostly, ordinary people are paying more attention to the normally ho-hum mid-term elections than they have in a long time.

One man, a Republican, who says he normally ignores the mid-terms, especially if the weather is bad, went so far as to vote early because he didn’t want to be left out.

Another voter, part of the  suburban white female demographic, also voted early.

She commented;

As an independent, I normally think it’s a good thing for there to be two-party representation in Congress.  This year though, I agree with the President, these people are too dangerous to be in power.  I just can’t believe how Democrats have acted since the election. They act like gangsters or old-time Mafia thugs, and some sound like they need a few months in a padded room to cool off. The fewer of those kind of Democrats there are in Congress, the better.”

Someone else remarked:

“I wonder just what kind of people the Democrats would be happy to get in bed with just to oppose President Trump. Maybe like Al Qaeda or ISIS or the Chinese?  Who knows? I didn’t even vote for him, but I’m sure not going to vote for those goofy left wing b—–ds either.”

Many women note that by attacking all men, Democrats sound like their vision of the perfect America would be a nation of revengeful amazons.

A man noted that he’s recently been advising his two pre-teen boys to never, ever be alone with a girl who, if she gets mad at them for something, might yell rape to get back at them.

To be fair, an awful lot of people just tune it all out. Increasingly though, even the apathetic are paying more attention.

We’ll see how many of those get off the couch in 29 days.

TGIF – September 5, 2018

After the Kavanaugh vote.

After the vote on the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh is taken Saturday, and regardless of the outcome, some people are calling for a more in depth investigation of the woman who leveled charges of sexual assault against him.

Why would it matter at that point you might ask, especially if he is confirmed?

Although Dr. Blasey Ford was and still is being handled in the words of one pundit, “like a Faberge egg”, her allegations, as well as those of Ms. Ramirez, have purportedly not been confirmed by any of the people listed as eyewitnesses.

Several people have intimated that she may have created the whole thing in her own mind, possibly to account for some other trauma in her life. They point to the fact that she and her attorneys have refused to make her therapist’s complete notes available for inspection, although she supposedly revealed them to the media.  If true, that voids her HIPAA protections.

That is important to the rest of us for one reason only, and that is to develop some sort of empirical way to develop methods to vet these kinds of accusations.

It isn’t enough to say we must believe all women when they allege sexual assault. As Musings noted on Wednesday, sometimes these accusations are not true, either because evidence was improperly handled, or simply because the accusers either lied deliberately or were genuinely mistaken in an identification.

Dr. Ford appears to genuinely believe her accusations.  Either that, or she deserves a star on a Hollywood sidewalk for the performance of a lifetime.

That isn’t the point.  The point is that an accusation such as hers is just as destructive to the lives of the accused person or persons as accusing them of first-degree murder. Even when the accusations are unproven, the mere fact that they were made follows the accused for the rest of their lives.

We have to find a way to institute procedures to eliminate or drastically reduce the chance of destroying lives due to either malice or mistakes.

That is of course unless the country adopts the new standard of “guilty until proven innocent” in which case there is no hope for us anyway.

Another weird law.

It’s illegal for restaurants and other holders of food permits in Austin Texas to throw away uneaten or scrap food. It has to be “recycled” in one form or another, according to the article.

We do throw away an awful lot of food in this country, but this seems like just another governmental overreach.

Given the fines that can be incurred, should you worry if the lasagna you are served has little green things growing on it?

Or should businesses simply require that if you buy it, you pack it out of the establishment?

Disappearing jobs – Farm workers

One of the job categories expected to at least partially disappear by 2040 is that of farm workers, particularly in the harvesting and growing areas. Robots are already being developed that can plant, transplant and harvest salad greens according to this article.

There is some irony in that, given that this technology is being developed in the sanctuary state of California, since it will eventually take away many of the unskilled laborer positions now filled by illegal immigrants.

Number seven is in the books.

Judge Kavanaugh’s seventh background check is complete, and to no one’s surprise Democrats don’t like the result.

That’s understandable, given that they really wanted a criminal investigation instead of a background check.

Perhaps they should be satisfied with what they have, since they may have found themselves the subjects instead of the requestors of a real investigation.

Of course the first thing Feinstein, Schumer and Co. did was to whine that the President had “tied the FBI’s hands.”  Apparently they didn’t notice that the President specifically said, on camera, that the Bureau could talk to anyone they wanted to.

It appears that the Democ-rats forgot that all of their Bureau accomplices have been fired.

The Senate got what it requested, an updated background check. Unfortunately for them, it did not provide corroboration of Dr. Ford’s accusations.

Does that mean the whole thing was a set-up from the get-go?  That’s for you to decide.

It is hard to see how rank and file Democrat voters can align themselves with the likes of Schumer, Feinstein, Durbin, and Schiff unless they too believe that everyone accused of anything should be presumed guilty.

Why is it that listening to Schumer and his crew of subversives engenders an overwhelming desire to take a shower?

Obviously, not all Democrats are complicit in the tactics we have seen employed this week.  It’s certainly OK to disagree with Republicans on matters of government.

What is not OK is to blindly parrot the filth that we have heard from Senate Democ-rats over the past two weeks.

Mitch McConnell, in an address on the Senate floor this morning, noted that it is the Senate itself that is on trial. Is it even remotely possible to have any respect for  that body now?

If you were called to serve on that jury, how would you vote?

Fair is fair – Isn’t it?

It’s becoming routine to hear some opinion host or lead writer breathlessly proclaim another “explosive” twist in a story or narrative.

For instance, right now everyone, from senators to local news anchors are castigating President Trump over his words and tone about Dr Christine Blasey Ford’s Judiciary Committee testimony.

It is true that the President has a rare talent for saying the right thing the wrong way or at the wrong time, and the tone he took in his most recent campaign-style rally is ample proof of that.

In this post-#MeToo moment, it’s probably not a good idea to question any woman’s account of sexual assault scornfully, and the President’s remarks only brought more heat down on Judge Kavanaugh.

Beyond that however, there are ordinary people who are questioning Dr. Ford’s accuracy, if not her veracity.

Some women who have themselves been the target of varying degrees of unwanted sexual attention up to and including assault have said, albeit quietly, that they thought Dr. Ford was either playing a part or that she had been coached or manipulated in some way.

And now we have a story that features a letter from a man who says he is her ex-boyfriend that brings up some of those same questions, including that she may have perjured herself during the hearing re: her knowledge of polygraph procedures.

OK, OK, it’s an ex who might have an axe to grind. We get that argument.

But what we don’t get is the MSM’s refusal to give the account any credit at all.

We don’t know yet whether the FBI contacted the woman described in the letter, one Monica L. McLean. In fact, we aren’t even sure whether that would even be within their assignment to conduct an updated background check of Judge Kavanaugh. After all, neither he nor Dr. Ford are on trial from a legal standpoint.

Indeed, if she did commit perjury, it would be up to the Senate to handle that, and we have the right as taxpayers to demand the same degree of outrage from Democrats that they have heaped upon Judge Kavanaugh.

What is germane to the confirmation is whether a nominee accused of any kind of wrongdoing has the right to expect his or her accuser’s veracity to be investigated as rigorously as are the actions of the accused nominee.

It is a fact that some men have been found to have been wrongfully accused in the fairly recent past, including two New York men  just released from prison this year after serving 26 years for a rape and assault they didn’t commit.

How do you give someone back 26 years of their life?

The MeToo movement, if it doesn’t want to find itself consigned to the ash heap of history, has an obligation to lobby just as vigorously for justice for the accused as it does for the accusers

Digging deeper.

Perhaps before the Kavanaugh vote is taken and whatever will happen does happen, it would be instructional to delve a bit deeper into how and/or why Dr. Ford seemed to be sure of only one thing in her testimony before the Judiciary Committee.

Whatever else she said her memories from 36 years ago might be, she was absolutely unwavering in naming Judge Kavanaugh as her attacker.

Many people wondered if she had ever tried hypnosis to recover more detail about the alleged attack.

Upon googling the combined search terms hypnosis and Blasey Ford, you might come across this interesting bit of history from The Federalist. The article refers to an academic paper summarizing the result of a study, published in the Journal of Clinical Psychology May 5, 2008, which lists Dr. Ford and a number of other clinicians as the authors.

Upon reading the abstract of the study, which has been cited over 50 times in other academic papers, it is obvious that Dr. Ford was cognizant of the use of hypnosis, including the fact that the hypnotic state could be self-induced, as well as the possibility of creating artificial memories or  “contaminating” the recall of  actual memories.

Before anyone gets their undies in a twist, let us state that we are making no accusations or assumptions based on this information. It is presented for what it is, an interesting bit of history relative to the accusations leveled against Judge Kavanaugh, and why they didn’t surface in any form for 30 years after the alleged incident happened.

It seems only fitting to explore this part of Dr. Ford’s background, given that Dems are getting all wound up over the definition of “boofing”.