BREAKING: Poll Shows Roy Moore Tied in Alabama Senate Race

A surprising new poll shows that Republican Roy Moore is tied with Democrat Doug Jones in the Alabama Senate race. Moore handily defeated incumbent Senator Luther Strange in the Republican primary last month.

In the new poll by Fox News, both Moore and Jones had the support of 42 percent of registered voters. The poll showed that only 53 percent of respondents were extremely or very interested in the race. Of those voters, Jones had a slight led of 46-45 percent.

Previous polling had shown Moore with a lead over Jones. Two polls taken at the end of September showed Moore with a lead of eight and five points respectively. Those polls sampled likely voters, which are historically more accurate than polls of registered voters.

The new poll shows deep divisions in the Republican Party. Forty-two percent of Moore’s supporters have reservations about the GOP candidate, who has a history of controversial behavior and comments. Only 28 percent of Jones voters have reservations.

Moore’s history, including two unfinished terms on the state Supreme Court, explains why a third a Jones voters support the Democrat candidate because they believe that Moore is too extreme. Twenty-one percent say that they are voting against Moore as opposed to voting for Jones.

While campaigning for Luther Strange, President Trump worried that Moore might have problems in the general election. Two months before Election Day, that seems to be a real danger. Thirty-nine percent say that Moore is “out of step” with Alabama compared to 29 percent who say that Jones is too liberal.

In deep red Alabama, the electorate still favors the Republican, but the new poll should be alarming to GOP strategists. Expect both parties to pour money into the state to compete for the 11 percent of voters who are still undecided.

 

 

 

 

 

Woohoo! Hillary Reiterates That She Won’t Run Again

If you ever wondered whether Hillary Clinton’s repeated promises that she won’t run again are just bunk (seriously, who has wondered that?), she told BBC Radio 4 in an interview on Tuesday that she is not going to run for president a third time.

She maintained that she will continue to monitor and criticize Trump, saying she believes her voice will “be magnified because I am not running.”

Before you go off celebrating too much, try to imagine that nasal monotone magnified. I get shivers down my spine.

The funny twist to this latest declaration that Hillary is done with seeking the White House is that apparently President Trump has been baiting her to run again.

“Oh, I hope Hillary runs,” he said during a news conference in the White House Rose Garden Monday afternoon. “Is she going to run? I hope. Hillary, please run again.”

He had tweeted a similar sentiment earlier in the day. “I was recently asked if Crooked Hillary Clinton is going to run in 2020? My answer was, ‘I hope so!'” he wrote Monday morning.

Looks like Trump wants to kick around his favorite opponent one more time. Who could blame him? After all, he did well enough against such a terrible candidate last time that one more round seems like a piece of cake.

What about the rest of us? If you’re anything like me, you can breathe a sigh of relief that we don’t have to see her in public that often anymore. #ImWithHer retiring for good.

More Kalifornia Krazy

The state that has decided you can be HIV positive and not disclose it to your intimate partners and that will shield illegal immigrants who commit crimes from federal immigration authorities has finally surpassed the minutiae of regulating cow farts. Today Governor Moonbeam signed a law regulating pet store owners.

Beginning in January of 2019, pet store owners in Kalifornia, regardless of ethical business practices or relationships with licensed reputable breeders, will only be allowed to sell animals they obtain from an animal shelter or other not-for profit rescue. AB-485 regulates the sale of dogs, cats and rabbits and the requirement is as follows:

122354.5. (a) A pet store operator shall not sell a live dog, cat, or rabbit in a pet store unless the dog, cat, or rabbit was obtained from a public animal control agency or shelter, society for the prevention of cruelty to animals shelter, humane society shelter, or rescue group that is in a cooperative agreement with at least one private or public shelter pursuant to Section 31108, 31752, or 31753 of the Food and Agricultural Code.
Yes, you read that correctly, Kalifornia just regulated the sale of pet rabbits. Last I knew, the only reason socialists gave for even owning a rabbit was to raise them to prevent starvation in Venezuela, but what do I know.
As is so typical in nanny states such as those on the Left coast, the law is implemented with zero regard for consumer choice, the effects on small business or the problems they will create. Of course, we know the only time the word “choice” is applied in these little socialist bubbles is when they are trying to preserve the right to kill your unborn child, but I digress.
People get pets for different reasons. Shelter animals, especially dogs, are very unpredictable. As I wrote elsewhere, my youngest dog was billed as a Lab-Shepherd-Husky mix by the shelter we adopted her from. All very stable and predictable breeds that respond well to click and other forms of training.
After a few months, it became clear the assessment of my pup was completely wrong given the behaviors she displayed. We did a doggie DNA test and it turned out she was mostly Staffordshire Terrier (essentially a pit bull) and Chihuahua with a little bit of Chow thrown in for good measure.
My children are grown and we are still working on some of her more stubborn behaviors. If my children were small, or I was looking for a dog that could be trained for a particular purpose, such as a companion for an elderly relative, she would have been a horrible match. We love her to death, but she is definitely not for everyone.
Kalifornia has said they are trying to reduce the number of “puppy mills”. Have they thought about elevating the number of returns for puppies and dogs? Or will they mandate all dogs get doggie DNA tests next to prevent the return of incompatible dogs? See how one rule breeds another rule? Raising costs to the business owner and the consumer.
Also, I do not hear a lot about a problem with “kitten mills” or “rabbit mills”, so exactly what problem are they trying to fix? I think it might be the problem of pet stores. Kalifornia has just decided they don’t want any.
Of course the regulation comes with increased recordkeeping requirements, rules about who pet owners can partner with in the shelter and animal rescue business and fines if the business owner makes a mistake. All things that hamper a business and add cost for whatever bureaucratic gain the state gets.
To recap, in Kalifornia you can knowingly infect someone with the HIV virus and not tell them. You can also be one of the thousands of criminal aliens Kalifornia releases back into the community every year. But you can’t be a pet store owner that endeavors to be the best in your market by partnering with ethical and responsible breeders to provide pets to consumers after January 1, 2019. Is it just me or are the priorities just a little messed up?

A Stranger in a Strange Land: I Feel Out of Place and Out of Sorts in American Politics Today

I want my children to grow up loving God, their parents, and their neighbors. I spend a lot of time in my book to them writing about this and about how they need to focus on their local community instead of the daily political angst. I want them to have that luxury, but I make my daily living by covering politics. Increasingly, I find I have no political home for the first time in forever.

I was an elected Republican. I served three and a half years of a four year term, only leaving because I could not take a full time radio job with my present employer while also being a part time city councilman. I never figured out during my time on city council what a partisan position on trash collection was. There were certainly ideological positions on public or private trash collection. But the GOP and Democrats did not have staked out positions.

Nowadays it seems both parties have positions on everything and they set their position not by what is best but by what the other side is for. They are guaranteed to be the opposite. And both sides are so tribal and now into cults of personality that the ideas are no longer important. Beating the other side is important. And American history shows over and over and over that it is impossible to beat the other side. There is no permanence in American politics.

Unfortunately, both sides now seem to want permanent victories and will not let anything or anyone get in their way. But to do so they have raised up the fringes of both sides that sound just like each other. I thought about that yesterday reading this excellent piece by Dan McLaughlin. The alt-right and the increasingly mainstream racial left would both define the United States in terms of skin color and both are positing that the white race is superior. It is just that one wants to prop it up and the other to tear it down — both willing to resort to violence for their ends.

I want an America that sees past race and increasingly both sides are defined by race. And the left, on top of defining people by skin color, adds gender, sexual orientation, and even particular deviancies to the mix.

On the right, a party that used to be centered around the idea of smaller government and individual empowerment is instead captured by its own personality that centers around a strong man in Washington and whatever he wants.

I used to really think my side took faith seriously and Christian values seriously, but at this point the joke is on me. It doesn’t. In Georgia, the Republicans are promising Amazon.com a boat load of taxpayer money if they build their second headquarters in the state and, to sweeten the deal, are promising to kill off any attempt at passing religious liberty legislation. In Washington, the GOP is screaming about Harvey Weinstein while ignoring the serial philanderer who was bragging about fame allowing men to grab women, well, you know. And the Christian conservatives went wild.

Christians are supposed to find some peace in the world by knowing that there is a last day and they are on the winning team. But right now a bunch of American Christians are looking to political solutions for spiritual problems and convincing themselves they’re making a Heaven on earth. They’ve gone all in on a works based earthly salvation that will only damn them and make things worse long term.

Compounding the problem are the growing number of cowards in the pulpit to preach a weak faith, a political faith, or fail to even preach the basics lest their congregation get mad at them. My goodness, a growing number of evangelicals think Jesus was created and they could not care less that Biblical sexual ethics really are necessary and incumbent to a consistent Christian world view.

So many people going to church on Sunday looked at Trump and called him a Cyrus, but increasingly this looks like a Maccabean revolt. Sure, they threw out those they saw as pagans and set about purifying temple America, but things did not exactly go well for the people or the kingdom thereafter. Of course it was all downhill to Herod and the first coming, so maybe it’ll all be downhill from here to the second coming. That increasingly looks likely as the world goes mad, this country included.

And therein lies the problem. People are political animals — maybe not to the same extent, but people are political. We decide our future in groups except when Anthony Kennedy wants to decide it for all 320 million of us. And right now both parties have lost their damn minds and, frankly, their religion.

The time is right for a group to rise up and bring together people of faith across race and ethnic lines. The Republican Party seems intent on ignoring the Biblical command to take care of the widows, the orphans, the poor, and the refugee. The Democratic Party seems intent on ignoring the Bible altogether — hijacked by a virulent and mean spirited secularism that preached tolerance until dominate and now seeks to silence good.

I want a new party, and a conservative one where conservatism is not defined by beating the other side, but by pursuing the best policies.

I want a party that recognizes we need a social safety net because there are those who, through physical or mental infirmity, cannot take care of themselves. But I want a party discerning enough to not let everybody onto the safety net.

I want a party that is pro-family and structures the tax code accordingly and fights for school choice so parents can get their kids educated instead of indoctrinated.

I want a party that is pro-life and that does not run from the Bible.

I want a pro-life, pro-family party that does not want to round up a twenty year old and send him back to a country he does not know after his parents brought him here as a toddler and this is the only country he has every known. But I also want a party that does not give his parents citizenship, even if we decide to let them stay here.

I want a party that secures its border, but does not demonize its neighbors.

I want a party that supports the second amendment, but also supports the first amendment.

I want a party that recognizes as long as Washington makes all our decisions then every hill is a hill to die on and every fight is bloody so that it de-escalates the fights by making Washington less central to our lives.

I want a party that does not define people by the color of their skin or where their families came from, but sees us all as part of the American experiment.

And I want a party that is beholden to ideas, not men.

I thought I had those things once. But I don’t. And I don’t think I have changed so much as my party has changed. Really, I just want a conservatism where ideas still matter.

To the extent that I have changed, though, I think I have changed for the better. I have a harder time reconciling my faith to my politics and see so many of my friends trying to squeeze their faith into their politics. I would rather go the opposite way and connect my politics to my faith, giving up those things that cannot be reconciled.

To the extend I have no party home any more, I find it freeing to be wedded more to the idea. And I find a great deal more faith in scripture that I really am a stranger in a strange land. But even so, I know I am called to “seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the Lord on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare.” (Jer. 29:7)

So if I have no home in either party, at least perhaps I can be a voice for those who likewise have no home, but are still committed to seeking the welfare of this place we temporarily dwell. I know I will still gravitate toward Republican candidates because that is still where most conservative candidates go. And I know that will find me on occasion supporting the same candidate as a Steve Bannon. But it will also mean I need to speak out and speak up on the ideas and the values and stand firm against a blending of Christianity and American nationalism for my faith is a faith that crosses borders, time, and space, and my conservatism is not soil and blood conservatism, but a conservatism of liberty for each person because we are all created equal and endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights.

Perhaps in this age of tribalism, the tribe we have not accounted for is the one with others like me.

I’m kind of homesick for a country
To which I’ve never been before
No sad goodbyes will there be spoken
For time won’t matter anymore

Beulah Land, I’m longing for you
And some day on thee I’ll stand
There my home shall be eternal
Beulah Land – Sweet Beulah Land

Why Is the GOP Establishment Such a Loser? It’s Kristol Clear

I was never #NeverTrump, but back during those crazy days of the 2016 GOP primary I had a certain amount of sympathy for those who were.  That’s because I respected quite a few of them—and in opposing Donald Trump, they weren’t exactly taking the easy road.  Our own Erick Erickson paid a steep price for abiding by his principles, and other writers whom I follow closely—Jonah Goldberg and Jay Nordlinger among them—built a convincing case against Trump’s brand of celebrity populism.

Since I have little use for cult-of-personality politics, and since my own conservatism springs primarily from intellectual and policy roots, I agreed with most of their arguments.  I also knew that Trump was not, at heart, a conservative, even if the agenda he proposed largely was.  One thing that Trump had going for him, though, was that he really made the GOP establishment nervous.  He wasn’t afraid to call them out as creatures of the DC swamp, a little too comfortable with a status quo in which they talked a good game but never actually did anything. Ted Cruz expressed the same sentiments, and the establishment hated them both for it—but since Cruz was the true conservative, I cast my vote for him in the primary.

Trump, however, was the one who prevailed, and I was fine with that.  Would I have preferred the nominee to be someone actually schooled in conservative thought and tradition?  Sure.  And would it have been better for the Republican standard-bearer to be more of a steady hand and less of a character from a WWE pay-per-view special?  Absolutely. But even if Trump was a flawed vessel, he talked about issues that the GOP base actually cared about—things like unchecked illegal immigration, which establishment toadies like Jeb! called an act of love.  Trump also understood what the Democrats had long known—that politics is a street fight and you don’t win by playing nice.  To a guy like me, who was still angry over how a decent man like Mitt Romney had his reputation trashed by a dishonest media and the likes of Harry Reid, this was nothing short of a vindication.

There are some, however, who never quite got over the vulgarity of it all.  Like the country clubbers of Bushwood horrified at the antics of Al Czervik, they still can’t believe that man was allowed anywhere near the White House.  Count among them Bill Kristol, who was a leading conservative voice and a champion of limited government, but who now defines himself wholly by his resistance to all things Trump.

 

I may be a simple blogger, but I can’t find the part of the Constitution that stipulates a strong preference for democratic norms except in cases when the duly elected president is kind of icky.  By those standards, Kristol should have advocated a Deep State overthrow of Bill Clinton—but I don’t remember seeing an article like that in the Weekly Standard at the time.

No matter.  To Kristol, being #NeverTrump means never having to give the president credit for anything, even when he takes actions that you wholeheartedly agree are good for the country.  Or, as he put it in a recent tweet:

 

For sure, it would have been far better if Hillary had picked the next Supreme Court justice.  I mean, our Second Amendment rights would be hanging by a thread and we’d be one court case away from erasing our religious liberties forever—but it would totes be worth it if Bill Kristol didn’t have to say, “Eww!” every time he had to watch a Trump presser.  As for Iran getting a nuclear weapon and the UN’s non-stop Israel bashing through UNESCO, would that really be such a large price to pay for not offending Kristol’s delicate sensibilities?  We have our standards to maintain, after all.

If you ever needed an illustration of exactly why the GOP establishment has become so hated by its own base, look no further.  In essence, Kristol is saying that losing the election and cementing the Obama legacy would have been preferable to the faux pas of Donald Trump.  Most voters see it differently.  They would rather win and advance their own agenda.  If that means putting up with some boorish behavior on the part of the president, then so be it.  That’s because they know the alternative is far worse.

Kristol, for his part, doesn’t seem to care.  If he can’t have things his way, he’d rather take his ball and go home—no matter how badly the rest of the country suffers.  Problem is, the voters are on to his little scam, and now he’s pitching a hissy fit.

It’s really too bad.  Kristol is s smart man, and has contributed greatly to the conservative moment over the years—more than I ever will, I’m certain.  But right now, his pride seems to be getting the better of him. Rather than try to convince everyone he was right about Trump all along, maybe he should try cutting the administration some slack when it’s deserved.  Then, when he calls them out for doing something stupid, his criticism will sound more genuine.

The Divided States of America

As Americans, we have an obligation to our fathers, forefathers, and especially the Founding Fathers to seek common ground with our fellow Americans.

In times when the U.S. faces potential existential threats from numerous sources that vary from North Korea to ISIS, the United States of America needs to again learn how to be united as one country. In order for that to happen, we absolutely must learn to listen to each other, if we’re ever going to have a constructive dialogue that allows us to reach common ground.

However, too many people have become convinced that they are the arbiters of right versus wrong, so their opinions are the only opinions that matter. They believe they know best, so others who might disagree shouldn’t even be heard.

To accomplish this, let’s say you believe that greenhouse gases created by human activity are destroying the environment,. You might choose to label someone who disagrees with you a climate denier, in order to stigmatize and silence them. In this context, the “denier” has refused to acknowledge truth. Conversely, if you think that it’s a foolish overreaction to drastically change our consumption of energy because computer models suggest concentrations of a trace element in the atmosphere have increased over time as fossil fuels are burned, you might choose to describe the opposing point of view as climate alarmism rather than legitimate concern. If only the two sides would be willing to meet on neutral ground and discuss their concerns about the impact on climate resulting from energy consumption, we might be able to figure out if a reasonable and constructive solution exists — assuming the alleged problems are real, of course. For many, it is simply assumed to be a scientific consensus.

Likewise, if you support a woman’s right to legal abortion, you might be tempted to demonize pro-lifers as people opposed to a woman’s “reproductive” rights. The pro-life crowd can demonize the other side by called them baby killers. If the goal is to antagonize your opponent in the debate, mission accomplished. But if you hoped to persuade them that your argument is superior because of logic and evidence, you have zero chance of success.

If you support gay marriage, you might think it’s terrific when a gay couple applies the powerful jackboot of government in forcing a Christian florist or baker to cater a gay wedding or lose their business, but what about the gay coffee shop owner throws a group of Christian patrons out of his business?

[WARNING: OFFENSIVE LANGUAGE]

In order to consistent in my beliefs, I’ve got to support the right of this coffee shop owner to refuse service. I’ll never force a business to take my money, if they don’t want it, and if I’m going to support the florist and baker for refusing to provide service to a gay wedding, I’ve got to let the coffee shop owner throw out the Christian patrons. Hey, if he only wants to serve LBGT people, he’s reduced his potential customer base to only 3.8 percent of the total population. The problems come when the “other” side simply isn’t interested in hearing what someone like me (white, male) might have to say. If we don’t somehow learn how to calm down and listen to each other, these problems are never going to get solved. Not long ago, a feminist told me that I have no right to an opinion on abortion because I don’t have a uterus.

Who made that rule?

Consider the woman involved in the incident recorded in the video below. She doesn’t seem to realize that she’s broken the law by confiscating the man’s hat because she doesn’t like the message to “Make America Great Again.”

In the course of her hysterical rant, the student admits that she hates America and doesn’t think it was ever a great country. Her anger is irrational, and her rhetoric nonsensical. Most importantly, she honestly believes that she has the right to deny a fellow citizen of their right of free speech. She doesn’t seem to understand that she’s asking the people in authority to support her breaking the law — taking someone’s property without permission could either be considered theft or petty larceny.

How do you have an honest conversation with someone who doesn’t grasp the basic difference between right and wrong, and no respect for the law?

[WARNING: OFFENSIVE LANGUAGE]

Where would this young lady get such an idea, that conservatives have no right of free speech? She also seemed oblivious to the fact that her overt, terroristic threats were being recorded, providing evidence of multiple criminal offenses. It never occurred to her that she might be doing something wrong or illegal.

If she had been a student at Princeton, the best explanation of where she got the idea might be the school paper, in which philosophy major Ryan Born wrote an op-ed claiming that in his opinion, conservatives have no right to free speech:

I am not arguing that conservatives do not expect intellectual opposition to their content; instead, I am arguing against their right to be heard and accepted. [emphasis added] I should clarify that I use “conservative” broadly to mean both those politically opposed to progressive aims, but also in particular to refer to those who invoke “free speech” to defend their access to political debate and to forestall political opposition to their viewpoints.

The irony here is quite palpable. Because of the First Amendment, Mr. Born has every right to express his reprehensible opinions, but he would deny that same right to those who would oppose him — making Mr. Born an excellent candidate to become a brutal totalitarian dictator one day, should he ever acquire political power. And while we might like to believe the Princeton op-ed attacking free speech was an aberration, it sadly was not.

An editorial in the Wellesley College student newspaper echoed many of the same sentiments expressed by Mr. Born at Princeton. The Wellesley editorial read in part:

Wellesley is certainly not a place for racism, sexism, homophobia, Islamophobia, transphobia or any other type of discriminatory speech. Shutting down rhetoric that undermines the existence and rights of others is not a violation of free speech; it is hate speech. The founding fathers put free speech in the Constitution as a way to protect the disenfranchised and to protect individual citizens from the power of the government. The spirit of free speech is to protect the suppressed, not to protect a free-for-all where anything is acceptable, no matter how hateful and damaging.

The Wellesley editorial dares to even go a step further than the Princeton op-ed, explaining that violence might be justified to suppress dissenting opinions:

[I]f people are given the resources to learn and either continue to speak hate speech or refuse to adapt their beliefs, then hostility may be warranted.

So…in order to prevent fascist behavior, the solution is to act like a fascist!

That makes perfect sense to me. Wait a minute…”No, strike that, and reverse it!” as Willy Wonka once said. That makes absolutely no sense to me at all. Unfortunately, this sort of intolerant attitude isn’t limited to liberal students on campus. These ideas apparently originated with liberal professors. How can we ever have a conversation with people who insist that we have no right to voice our opinions? Are we only allowed to listen to their lectures, and not permitted to question authority?

Americans are being divided by race, religion, politics, sexual identity, education, geography, and social classes. These divisions are being manufactured on purpose by people who reap financial profit through creating division and strife. The “divide and conquer” mentality is working. We’ve got to stop it. Now. Before things get any worse.

America has always been the greatest country on the face of the earth, because of our freedom. This is the land of opportunity — where government promotes the general welfare, but was never intended to provide it. Because I want to earn more than the residual income my novels currently provide, I also write material for the Resurgent.

If you want to achieve greater success, work harder. That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it.

So, how will we ever have a civil discussion with people who openly admit they refuse to listen? People who would use force to silence us? Violence will only make matters worse.

Physically assaulting someone isn’t going to persuade them to change their mind. Unfortunately, that won’t stop intolerant people from trying such deplorable tactics.

Don’t become part of the problem. Look for ways to be part of the solution.

I would be willing to listen to the coward who used a bike lock as a deadly weapon while hiding behind the mask before running away, assuming he is willing to reciprocate and listens to me when it’s my turn to speak. As long as he’s safely locked in his jail cell, of course.

You don’t have to listen to me, but you’d better learn how to listen to reason.

Rick Scott Declares a State of Emergency in Florida over Upcoming Richard Spencer Speech

Florida’s governor Rick Scott has declared a state of emergency in his state over an upcoming event involving the University of Florida, and no, it’s not because the Georgia Bulldogs will march into Jacksonville on October 28 and trounce the Gators. Scott has made the declaration ahead of a speech by alt-right guru Richard Spencer.

It’s easy to see why Scott wold be skittish about having someone like Spencer come to Gainesville. After all, the white nationalist cretin Spencer organized the event in Charlottesville, VA in August that not only ended in loss of life but created political ripples that have been difficult for both sides of the aisle to get over.

Declaring the state of emergency for the speech gives Scott the flexibility to mobilize police and National Guard troops as he sees fit in order to keep the peace and protect students and other citizens.

In a seven-page executive order, Scott declared: “I find that the threat of a potential emergency is imminent.” He activated the same emergency powers he employed as Hurricane Irma took aim at the state last month.

The governor’s executive order, Number 17-264, gives state agencies the power to suspend rules and regulations, including for purchasing, travel and personnel actions. Scott also activated his authority as governor to spend surplus money as he deems necessary.

Sadie Darnell, the sheriff of Alachua County, agrees with Scott.

Sheriff Darnell said the order mainly makes resources available much faster than normal. She praised Scott for his cooperation. She said Scott’s order includes power to impose curfews but that she did not anticipate that would be necessary.

“As long as people are peacefully assembling, they‘re not going to have any problems anywhere in Alachua County,” Darnell said.

The order also allows the University of Florida to more easily seek reimbursement for security costs, which will no doubt run high – the school has already spent half a million dollars.

For his part, Spencer has naturally referred to the declaration as “major overkill” and “a pretext to stifle free speech.” Those are exactly the kind of statements we would expect from the alt-right.

It’s a shame that we have to fork over this kind of money to protect people from the hideous actions of Spencer’s followers as well as the reactions of those on the opposite side that could end in violence. But good for Governor Scott for taking proactive measures to protect his state.