University Bans Professor For “Siding With Christians In The Culture War”

Colin Kaepernick’s publicity-grabbing, America-hating stunts have blossomed during the past year. Dozens of NFL players have joined in, prompting reactions from both the President and Vice President that have added to the frenzy.

Kaepernick’s distraction has been a spectacular success, at least for him (though NFL owners might see things slightly differently). Virtually nobody discusses how much Kaepernick sucks as a quarterback.  Instead, nearly everyone who talks about him does so to opine, favorably or unfavorably, about his disrespect of the flag.

The University of Montana (UM) in Missoula is stealing a page from Kaepernick’s playbook (his political playbook, that is – his old 49’ers playbook is collecting dust). Like Kaepernick, UM’s best days are long gone, as explained last week by liberal Montana blogger James Conner:

[UM] once was the state’s flagship university. Now that designation belongs to Montana State University. UM has become a sinking ship, its enrollment and reputation declining. No one seems to know why, let alone how to arrest and reverse the decline….Missoula is an old timber town, its logging and smokejumper heydays behind it, with a reputation, possibly unearned, as a panhandler’s paradise with a rape culture on and off campus. Where would you rather send your daughter to college? Where would she prefer to attend college?

Indeed, UM is a rapists’ paradise, especially rapists who play football better than Kaepernick can, which is a lot of them.

UM, like Kaepernick, seeks to distract attention away from failures by spitting on an American tradition – flags in Kaepernick’s case, free speech in UM’s. But for a university to get the same attention for its leftwing jackassery that Kaepernick gets for his, it must outdo, for example, the conservative-hating Antifa sympathizers who control Berkeley, or the conservative-hating professors at the University of Missouri who call for “muscle” when questioned by the press.

Where there’s a will, there’s a way, and UM’s leaders may have figured out how to one-up their better-known comrades in Berkeley and Columbia, Missouri: ban professors who “sid[e] with Christians in the culture war.”

So now Dr. Mike S. Adams has been uninvited as the speaker for the tenth annual Jeff Cole Lecture sponsored by Maria Cole, a longtime benefactor of UM’s School of Journalism. Dr. Adams has been a professor at the University of North Carolina (UNC) since 1993, and has been selected in two different years as UNC’s “Professor of the Year.”

But Dr. Adams also writes for the conservative Townhall blog. Worse, he’s a Christian – the really icky kind that takes the Bible seriously.

Indulging rapist football players is one thing. But subjecting UM’s J-School snowflakes to the opinions of a Christian academic is quite another, and Larry Abramson is having none of it. Abramson spent his career drawing a salary from NPR, the taxpayer-subsidized propaganda arm of the government. He lacks the savvy and intellect to hack it in the private sector, thereby making him the perfect J-School Dean. Abramson put his sleuthing skills to work, dug up the dirt on Dr. Adams, and laid it out in an email to Cole:

If you jump in at 3:30 on the link at the bottom, you can hear him talking about his opposition to tolerance of transgender accommodations. He appears to be siding with Christians in the “culture war.” In this one he talks about his efforts to make sure that abortion providers give time to Christian speakers, in the interest of freedom of speech. He also talks about the prevalence of “cultural Marxism,” and exclusively speaks on right wing sites. In this one, he talks about why he will no longer allow “illegal aliens” into his classes. I think we can find a speaker who will talk about free speech issues, without running the risk of offending students. We can still have a conversation with him if you want, but he is pretty extreme in his views. (emphasis added).

Censoring conservatives, Christian conservatives in particular, is what passes for intellectualism at the “University” of Montana. Professors, students, and outside speakers holding a Christian worldview need not apply to Montana’s fake university.

So obsessed is Abramson with maintaining ideological purity that he apparently overlooked Dr. Adams’ prevailing in Adams v. UNC-Wilmington, a case in which the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit held that UNC could not use Dr. Adams’ online blogging to deny him a full professorship.

In other words, UM might have picked the wrong dude to silence, as I suspect the school is being told by university counsel at this very moment.

But nobody would accuse UM’s deans and faculty of being the sharpest knives in the drawer. Certainly not Montana college students. Most of them now enroll at Montana State University in Bozeman, which has seen enrollment explode while UM’s has plummeted.

Even UM’s brain-dead faculty and staff can read the handwriting on the wall. They’ve been fleeing in droves to take advantage of buyouts. Like Abramson, few have any real prospects in the real world. But they’ve calculated, reasonably, that current severance packages resulting from voluntary departures this year are likely to be far more generous than anything they’ll get if they stick around and get laid off next year.

UM’s School of Journalism, in particular, has sunk to the bottom of the university’s trash heap. In fairness to Abramson, the shortcomings of the school’s alums were evident before he took the helm. Take, for example, the refusal of Montana’s press corps to report in 2014 on how then-Sen. John Walsh (D-MT) plagiarized a thesis while attending the U.S. Army’s War College. None of the state’s reporters would touch the story. Montana voters had to look to the New York Times, of all places, to discover just how big of a fraud their Democrat senator was. Montana’s press corps finally followed up after the Times broke the story, leading Walsh to abandon his campaign shortly thereafter.

Having anti-Christian bigots training tomorrow’s Montana “journalists” won’t increase the scrutiny upon the state’s public officials – at least not the ones with a “D” behind their names.

I noticed that Dr. Adams got an RT from Ann Coulter on Twitter yesterday. So here’s a suggestion for Matt Rosendale and Al Olszewski, the two actual conservatives running for Montana’s U.S. Senate seat. Invite Ann, or Ben Shapiro (or both) to attend a free-speech rally in Missoula like the ones in Berkeley. It would generate a truckload of free press, remind Montana’s Republican primary voters that they live in the most anti-free speech state in the nation, and make UM’s campus appear less deserted, at least temporarily. And a free-speech rally in Missoula would certainly draw a bigger crowd of Republicans than the eight saps who showed up on Tuesday for the campaign kick-off for Russell Fagg, the MTGOP establishment’s waterboy for U.S. Senate.

And if recent events at the University of Missouri are any guide, there might be an even bigger benefit. Missouri’s failure to respond to thuggish Ferguson-inspired students and faculty resulted in thousands of normal students, i.e., ones looking for a useful education, fleeing to other schools. Should the same spotlight that shined upon Mizzou’s speech Nazis also shine upon Missoula’s, resulting in a similar exodus of students on top of the thousands Missoula has already lost, UM might shut down permanently. Montana’s taxpayers would save hundreds of millions of dollars, and Montana’s future college students would avoid the mistake of enrolling in a fake university.

MT Senate Race: Rosendale Shouldn’t Appease McConnell

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has long made it his mission to destroy conservatives in Senate primaries. He backed Charlie Crist over Marco Rubio in Florida, Arlen Specter over Pat Toomey in Pennsylvania, Trey Grayson over Rand Paul in Kentucky, David Dewhurst over Ted Cruz in Texas and Bob Bennett over Mike Lee in Utah.  There are other examples, but you get the idea. When an actual conservative runs in a Senate primary, McConnell backs the opponent.

McConnell always talks a good game, of course, like when he declared the need for Obamacare to be “pulled out root and branch”:


Alas, McConnell was against Obamacare before he was for it. After spending years campaigning, and fundraising, on his “root and branch” promises, McConnell secretly told senators that the proposed reforms of Obamacare’s Medicaid provisions were a mirage.  John McCain’s infamous “thumbs down” vote might have formally ended the Obamacare repeal efforts sooner than expected, but McConnell’s earlier backroom dealing and duplicity had already doomed them.

So it was disappointing when Matt Rosendale, the State Auditor for Montana and frontrunner for the Republican nomination for the Senate in 2018, recently declared that McConnell’s status as majority leader was “not in question.” Not exactly a glowing endorsement, but Rosendale was clearly signaling that, if elected, he wouldn’t join any subsequent mutiny against McConnell.

Rosendale should reconsider. For one thing, the Senate will never enact conservative reforms with McConnell as majority leader. Rather, our current Republican congressional leaders are devoted to entrenching Democrat policies, as Brent Bozell explained:

There is no difference between Republicans and Democrats. Put them together. They are the swamp. Just as Republicans have the power to enact the agenda they’ve pledged in toto, so too do they now own the federal government, in toto. It’s no longer Obamacare. It’s GOPcare. It’s no longer crazy liberal Democratic spending. It’s crazy liberal Republican spending. It’s no longer socialist Democratic Party taxation, it’s socialist Republican Party taxation. All the legislation authorizing all these programs, all the graft, all the waste, all the obscenity, all the immorality, and where Planned Parenthood is concerned, all the killing — all of it is now formally authored by the Republican Party.

A more practical reason for Rosendale to campaign against McConnell is that it’s good politics. Republican voters despise their congressional leaders. This is particularly true of McConnell, and has been since conservatives like Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) began exposing his lies:

In responding to Trump’s strategy in recent days of attacking congressional leaders, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) admitted that “the Congress is very unpopular, particularly with the Republican base, so there’s nothing unhinged about it.”

That strategy is paying off for Roy Moore, a conservative challenging Sen. Luther Strange (R-AL), a RINO and McConnell sycophant. Moore has made opposition to McConnell a central issue in the campaign and, as of last week, was polling ahead of Strange 51% to 32%, with less than a month to go before Alabama’s runoff election. Even more stunning was the reaction of Republicans when told McConnell had spent millions supporting Strange – 10% said they were more likely to vote for Strange, but a whopping 45% said McConnell’s support made them less likely to vote for Strange.

McConnell’s super PACs are putting up more ads attacking Moore and threatening to blacklist Republican consultants who oppose Strange. But soon the wolves themselves might become prey because, as the Washington Post observes, a Moore victory “would raise the possibility that future Republican Senate candidates would run on an anti-McConnell promise, especially in red-state primary races — putting his leadership in jeopardy.” And a Moore victory is quite possible in no small part because Moore has taken the fight to McConnell.

One Montana candidate has noticed: “Republican candidate Al Olszewski, a state senator, said he would not vote for McConnell to stay on as leader if he’s elected.” The other potential Montana candidates floating trial balloons, Troy Downing, a wealthy California transplant, and Russell Fagg, a Billings judge, are both uninspiring establishmentarians. So even though Olszewski is not as well known or as well funded as Rosendale, he can position himself to hog most of Montana’s populist conservatives, of which there are many, if he hammers home the point that he’s the only Montana candidate opposed to McConnell.

I got to know Rosendale and Olszewski when I served with them during the 2015 session of the Montana Legislature. Al exudes personal warmth, probably the result of a being a physician with years of honing his bedside manner, and has a respectable record, particularly on pro-life issues. But Matt is considered by many to be more conservative. So it’s puzzling that he has given Olszewski an opening to attack him from the right. As McConnell and the rest of the leadership in Congress continues floundering between now and Montana’s primary in June 2018, that opening will only widen unless Rosendale changes course and campaigns against the enemies of reform within the GOP.

Whoever wins the nomination will be up against Sen. Jon Tester, a two-term incumbent. Though well funded, Tester is not invulnerable. Trump carried Montana by over 20 points last year. Tester, whose voting record is comparable to that of Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), has never gotten above 50%. Montana Republicans and the independents who broke overwhelmingly for Trump last year could oust Tester next year. But with Trump off the ballot, they won’t show up if they think they’re simply replacing Tester with a McConnell waterboy.

McConnell admitted a few weeks ago that Republicans seeking to repeal Obamacare had “come up a little bit short.” So long as McConnell remains majority leader, Senate conservatives will always “come up a little bit short” when attempting to pass any important reform. McConnell will make sure of it.

Voters around Montana and the nation are figuring out that a McConnell-led Senate hasn’t drained the swamp during this congressional session, and won’t during the next session, because McConnell and his super PACS are the swamp – or at least a significant part of it. Rosendale needs to convince Montanans that he gets that– if he wants to win the primary, if he wants to win the general election and, most importantly, if he wants to be worthy of winning.

Beijing’s Suez Moment

In his 2011 book After America, Mark Steyn predicted that “one day, Washington will be on the receiving end of Beijing’s Suez moment.” By that he meant China would one day humiliate America the way America humiliated Britain during the Suez Crisis in 1956.

Reading between the lines of Steven Bannon’s exit interviews last week, that day may have arrived.

Bannon’s statements on Friday to the Weekly Standard about payback against the GOP establishment received far more press than the far more interesting statements he made to the American Prospect days earlier:

There’s no military solution [to North Korea’s nuclear threats], forget it. Until somebody solves the part of the equation that shows me that ten million people in Seoul don’t die in the first 30 minutes from conventional weapons, I don’t know what you’re talking about, there’s no military solution here, they got us.

Put aside for a moment that North Korea’s ability to destroy Seoul is a myth. Bannon, who describes himself as a nationalist whose first principle of foreign policy is America First and who believes we will soon experience an apocalyptic “Fourth Turning,” is supposedly so concerned about a conventional attack on Seoul that he’s willing to accept a North Korea capable of a nuclear attack on America’s cities.

I’m not buying it. This sounds like the kind of excuse we’re likely to hear more of from the Trump Administration as North Koreans begin building their first generation of nuclear-tipped intercontinental ballistic missiles. Gone are the days shortly after Trump’s inauguration when he promised to prevent North Korea from acquiring ICBMs capable of hitting the United States. Now, he’s praising Kim Jung-un simply for refraining from firing missiles toward Guam, as is Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.

What accounts for Trump’s apparent capitulation? One explanation is that history is repeating itself in the form of a stealth Suez Crisis, this time with the United States on the losing side. America was on the winning side of the original one that began when Britain, along France and Israel, invaded Egypt in response to Gamal Nassar’s nationalization of the Suez Canal. Dwight Eishehower was determined to stop them. He wouldn’t engage our allies militarily, of course. But he didn’t have to, as explained by the U.S. Army War College:

With just three offensive strikes, the United States achieved its immediate policy aims of forcing Britain and then France to withdraw from the Suez Canal. The three financial warfare strikes were: (1) blocking the International Monetary Fund (IMF) from providing Britain with $561 million in standby credit; (2) blocking the US Export-Import Bank from extending $600 million in credit to Britain; and (3) threatening to dump America’s holdings of pound-sterling bonds unless Great Britain withdrew from the Suez. The credit blockade froze Britain’s ability to borrow and forced it back onto its negative cash flow, effectively bankrupting it. The pound-sterling threat significantly raised the perceived risk of dealing in British currency. That threat, if executed, would have directly affected British ability to trade internationally.

Britain suffered an international humiliation and America became the undisputed leader of the West.

Fast forward 60 years and replace “Suez” with North Korea and “America’s holdings of pound-sterling bonds” with China’s holdings of U.S. Treasuries – over $ 1 trillion worth, to be more precise. A story published in Forbes a few years ago acknowledged that “a decision by China to sell off massive positions of U.S. debt would send the American economy into a downward spiral,” but claimed that China itself would be harmed by such a move.

Maybe the Chinese don’t think so. Or maybe they don’t care. As Steyn pointed out six years ago, China was funding and building ports in Burma, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and Pakistan. Its overseas investments, and influence, have grown steadily since then. In short, China seeks to upend America’s economic and military hegemony around the globe. Whatever China may think of the Kim dynasty, it has had commitments to its communist ally spanning over half a century. By making good on those commitments through threats of debt warfare (or worse) against the U.S., and forcing Trump to break his commitments to stop North Korea’s ICBM program, China would make clear to the world who the real hegemon is. That might be worth the temporary economic setback China would endure by dumping its Treasuries.

Steyn’s prediction six years ago about China economically extorting the U.S. far better explains Trump’s capitulation on North Korea than Bannon’s crock about worries over civilian casualties in Seoul, especially in light of Bannon’s concerns over China:

[T]he economic war with China is everything. And we have to be maniacally focused on that. If we continue to lose it, we’re five years away, I think, ten years at the most, of hitting an inflection point from which we’ll never be able to recover.

But in the end, it really doesn’t matter what Trump’s real motive is for capitulating on North Korean ICBMs. John F. Kennedy had his faults. But he understood, in a way that Trump and Bannon apparently do not, that America’s interests, and its safety, depend upon adversaries believing the President of the United States will back up his threats with actions. This is what a president sounds like when he’s serious about confronting America’s enemies:

This urgent transformation of Cuba into an important strategic base — by the presence of these large, long-range, and clearly offensive weapons of sudden mass destruction — constitutes an explicit threat to the peace and security of all the Americas….[T]he greatest danger of all would be to do nothing….And one path we shall never choose, and that is the path of surrender or submission.

By publicly announcing that Soviet missiles in Cuba were an existential threat to the nation, Kennedy burned any bridges that would have allowed him to retreat, thereby making continued American acquiescence of those missiles impossible. Nikita Khrushchev got the message, and while he secured American promises to withdraw its obsolete Jupiter missiles from Turkey and leave Cuba unmolested, his missiles were gone within days.

To grasp just how big of a cat Bannon let of the bag, imagine Pierre Salinger, John F. Kennedy’s press secretary, publicly announcing during the Cuban Missile Crisis that “there’s no military solution here, they got us.” If Khrushchev had believed that Salinger knew JFK’s thoughts the way Bannon likely knows Trump’s, Cuba would still have those missiles.

Peggy Noonan chided Trump for his threat to unleash “fire and fury” on North Korea as “inflammatory rhetoric.” More important than tone, however, is resolve.  JFK had it, or at least convinced Khrushchev that he did. Bannon has signaled that Trump has none. Unless Bannon is completely mistaken, Beijing will have its Suez moment, America will suffer an international humiliation the day North Korea launches its first true ICBM, and the world will be a far more dangerous place for both us and our allies.

Murkowski Should Lose Her Committee Chairmanship

Last Friday, Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) joined two other “Republican” senators in tanking Obamacare repeal efforts. Prior to that, Donald Trump had huffed and puffed about Murkowski’s earlier defections:

His Interior Secretary, Ryan Zinke, called Murkowski to threaten her with the scuttling of federal programs in Alaska.

Murkowski responded by giving Trump and his boy the finger. She trumpeted her status as a maverick to her local press. And she shut down hearings for several of Trump’s sub-cabinet appointments at Interior.

She gets to do that because she chairs the Senate’s Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, which oversees the Interior Department.

So by yesterday, Zinke was begging for a kiss-&-make-up photo op:

Skeptics might think that Trump siccing his Cabinet’s biggest sycophant on Murkowski, only to send him back a week later to suck down a brewski with Murkowski, was political ineptitude. Or they might think the whole thing was a charade, as I’ve suggested previously. They might even wonder whether Trump was ever serious about repealing Obamacare in the first place, particularly given his long-standing support of socialized medicine.

What is unarguable, however, is the enormous power a Senate committee chairman wields – a power that, at times, can bring an administration to heel. Which raises the question of why Murkowski still has hers.

Actual Republicans in the Senate, like Ted Cruz, Mike Lee, and Rand Paul, should ignore Murkowski’s bottle of Alaskan Big Mountain Pale Ale and think instead about a can of Coke – one containing a rat head. That’s what Grover Norquist urges Republicans to imagine when one of their elected officials supports tax increases. If you gulp down a Coke and find a rat head at the bottom of the can, it’ll probably be awhile before you buy your next Coke. The company’s brand will have been severely damaged in your eyes.

And so it is with voters who elect Republicans who later raise taxes.  Voters lose faith in the party’s brand.

Norquist’s insightful reasoning applies with equal (or perhaps greater) force to the GOP’s broken promises to repeal Obamacare. Republicans, and Senate Republicans in particular, need to restore voter faith if they’re to have any chance of surviving a likely Democrat tsunami in November 2018.

That means convincing voters that last week’s Obamacare debacle was the result of a betrayal of the party by Murkowski rather than a betrayal of the voters by the party. They can’t primary her anytime soon because her next election isn’t until 2022. So at the very least, Republican senators must demonstrate that those who sabotage the party forfeit the biggest perk a party’s Senate caucus can bestow: a committee chairmanship. Caucus rules allow chairmen to be removed by a majority vote. There is precedent for seeking to do so when a senator betrays the voters, as Oregon’s Mark Hatfield did in 1995 by being the only Republican senator to vote against a balanced budget amendment.

Removing Murkowski as Chairman of Senate Energy and Natural Resources is critical in order for the party to accomplish the following:

  • Reclaim the GOP Party Brand: Republican candidates and lawmakers promised their voters repeatedly for the past seven years that, given the chance, they’d throw Obamacare into the scrap heap of history. They’ve been as vocal about Obamacare (maybe even more so) as they’ve been about tax cuts. Voters are not amused by last week’s clownshow. According to yesterday’s polling, 60% of Republican voters, and 80% of Americans overall, disapprove of the party’s handling of health care. Those are rat-head-in-a-Coke-can numbers that need to be improved, now, before they harden.
  • Promote Party Accountability: If you ever found a rat head in your Coke, at the very least you would expect Coke Inc. to demote the manager of the plant that distributed the can. Demoting the manager in Alaska who distributed tainted cans is the very least that the GOP customers have a right to expect from the party leadership.
  • Promote Party Transparency: It’s also important to know which GOP senators truly opposed Obamacare. It was quite convenient that three GOP senators voted against the “skinny bill” last week, the bare minimum needed to kill it. Each of the other 49 could then vote for repealing Obamacare knowing the vote was meaningless other than as an opportunity for press releases and campaign ads highlighting their bravery. If Senate Republicans allow Murkowski to retain her chairmanship, voters can reasonably assume that she took one for the team.
  • Deter Similar Catastrophes in the Future: If you’re Coke, Inc., and you’ve already let one rat-filled can out of your Alaska plant, you’d better not let it happen again. Demoting your Alaska plant manager would send a strong message to managers in other states about the costs of violating company policy. Republican senators will soon confront bills on taxes, immigration, energy – you name it. They cannot afford anymore debacles like last week’s failure on Obamacare. Stripping Murkowski of her chairmanship would send an important message to the other squishes in the caucus.

But wait – why pick on just Murkowski? Didn’t John McCain (R-AZ) and Susan Collins (R-Maine) vote against the Obamacare repeal as well? And don’t they both chair Senate committees? Yes and yes, but neither are good targets for demotion. McCain will turn 81 later this month and, absent a medical miracle, will not return to the Senate. Cancer treatment will remove McCain from his committee chairmanship. Having the caucus do so formally would be overkill. Collins isn’t a good target either because her vote was plausibly one of conscience. Collins was the only Republican who voted against repealing Obamacare in 2015 when Obama’s veto pen made that vote a risk-free endeavor.

Murkowski, on the other hand, has a long history of being a deceptive, abortion-loving turncoat. In 2010, Joe Miller, a true conservative, combat veteran, and graduate of West Point and Yale Law School, defeated Murkowski for the Republican nomination. Rather than accept the verdict of Alaska’s voters, Murkowski ran as a write-in candidate and narrowly defeated Miller in the general election. Republican senators rewarded Murkowski’s betrayal of Alaska Republicans by later making her a committee chair after they retook control of the Senate in November 2014.

And then, of course, there’s Murkowski’s lies about Obamacare. She defeated Miller in 2010 and again in 2016 in no small part by pledging to repeal it. Indeed, she voted to repeal it – in 2015, when Obama held a veto pen, when her vote didn’t have any effect other than to swindle Alaska voters.

If Republican senators are willing to continue rewarding someone like Murkowski with a committee chairmanship, then the party truly is a fraud. Every Republican senator or senate candidate, such as Luther Strange in Alabama or Matt Rosendale in Montana, should be asked whether they think Murkowski should remain a chairman.

It’s not clear that Trump and Zinke understand Norquist’s insight regarding party branding. Or that they’d care if they did. Or even that they’re Republicans in any meaningful sense.

But Trump and Zinke aren’t running for anything next year. Several Senate Republicans are, as well as all of their brethren in the House. They’re there because they promised to “drain the swamp” in general and repeal Obamacare in particular. If they’d like to retain their majorities, they must begin to reclaim their brand and clean out the rats in their party’s leadership, starting with Lisa Murkowski.


White House C***blocking Isn’t Impressing Kim Jung-Un

Sometimes a swatted fly reveals more than a fly on the wall. From today’s Washington Post:

Trump’s demeaning of [Reince] Priebus came through in other ways, too. At one point, during a meeting in the Oval Office, a fly began buzzing overhead, distracting the president. As the fly continued to circle, Trump summoned his chief of staff and tasked him with killing the insect, according to someone familiar with the incident.

Nothing illustrates the past year’s prostration of the former chairman of the Republican National Committee and his party better than this swatting. Not even this scene from just last month in which Priebus told Trump that “we thank you for the opportunity and the blessing that you’ve given us to serve your agenda” – the kind of praise one normally gives to God.

The Post’s story follows days after Trump’s new Communications Director, Anthony Scaramucci, shared this insight with The New Yorker:

Reince is a f***ing paranoid schizophrenic, a paranoiac,” Scaramucci said. He channeled Priebus as he spoke: “ ‘Oh, Bill Shine is coming in. Let me leak the f***ing thing and see if I can c***block these people the way I c***blocked Scaramucci for six months.’ ”

The New Yorker noted that “Priebus did not respond to a request for comment.”  Big mistake. Just as Christopher Walken needed more cowbell from Blue Oyster Cult, Trump needs more c***blocking from his sycophants:

President Trump was reportedly unhappy with former chief of staff Reince Priebus for not “returning fire” at White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci following an explosive interview with the New Yorker this week.

Yesterday, Trump and his entourage abandoned Priebus on the tarmac after Air Force One landed in New York.

Abraham Lincoln had his Team of Rivals. And now, with Priebus’ firing, Trump is inching closer to having his Team of C***blockers.

But what happens when someone on the Team refuses to swat flies and, instead, c***blocks the President himself?

Peggy Noonan answered that question – well, perhaps not that exact question – on Thursday. Referring to Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ refusal to capitulate in the face of weeks of degrading tweets made against him by Trump, she had this to say:


[Trump’s] not strong and self-controlled, not cool and tough, not low-key and determined; he’s whiny, weepy and self-pitying. He throws himself, sobbing, on the body politic. He’s a drama queen. It was once said, sarcastically, of George H.W. Bush that he reminded everyone of her first husband. Trump must remind people of their first wife. Actually his wife, Melania, is tougher than he is with her stoicism and grace, her self-discipline and desire to show the world respect by presenting herself with dignity….Half the president’s tweets show utter weakness. They are plaintive, shrill little cries, usually just after dawn.

Sessions gave up his Senate seat in order to implement Trump’s immigration and tough-on-crime agenda. He’s proud of his efforts and daring Trump to fire him.

Noonan’s best insight comes at the very end of her piece:

Meanwhile the whole world is watching, a world that contains predators. How could they not be seeing this weakness, confusion and chaos and thinking it’s a good time to cause some trouble.

As Noonan points out, Trump’s lack of manliness undermines America’s foreign policy. Those who attempt to appease Trump by swatting his flies end up stains on an airport tarmac while those like Sessions who remain steadfast not only maintain their dignity but also avoid (so far at least) firing by the hardass CEO of the Apprentice, someone who’s supposed to be able to effortlessly fire anyone at anytime but instead responds to defiance by morphing into a transitioning Bruce Jenner.

If you’re Kim Jung-Un, what conclusion might you draw from all of this?

The obvious one, of course. Hours after Noonan’s published her piece, North Korea tested, yet again, another intercontinental ballistic missile, one that can reach the continental United States.

This comes after months of Trump tweeting ultimatums against North Korea and pleas to China to get a handle on its client state. China hasn’t done so. Indeed, such is the level of disrespect China has towards Trump that it has been allowing its banks to process billions of dollars through the U.S. financial system on North Korea’s behalf and allowing North Koreans to transport their missiles on Chinese-built trucks.

Even Trump should be learning by now that raging tweets can’t c***block a determined cabinet secretary, or a Hwasong-14 ballistic missile. Trump’s agenda is in shambles, and America is in grave danger, not because of the caustic tone of Trump’s tweets but because Trump’s enemies have learned not to take him seriously.

Zinke’s Threats Against Murkowski Are a Charade

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke supposedly called Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) yesterday afternoon following her “no” vote on repealing Obamacare and told her there’s gonna be hell to pay for Alaskans.

Yeah. That’ll show her.

Except for one thing. Murkowski stated for weeks that she was opposed to repealing Obamacare. So if Zinke’s threat was real, and he and his boss had really cared about flipping Murkowski, the time to threaten her would have been before the vote, not after.

Real political payback would involve more than an empty threat from a cabinet secretary auditioning to be Trump’s new Chris Christie.  It would include Senate Republicans removing Murkowski as the chair of the Senate’s Energy and Natural Resources Committee, an invaluable perch for any senator west of the Mississippi.

That will never happen because most Senate Republicans have no desire to repeal Obamacare. Murkowski and a handful of other Republicans took one for the team yesterday. The remaining Republicans were thus free to vote for repeal with the same unseemly confidence they had in 2015 when they voted to repeal Obamacare while Obama still held a veto pen.

Murkowski wasted no time peddling her new Joan-of-Arc status, however, which the dullards in Alaska’s local press swallowed faster than starving sockeye salmon. From the Alaska Dispatch News:

[Zinke’s] response follows Trump’s no-holds-barred style of governing, even when it comes to his own party. It is his first strike of retaliation against Murkowski, however, despite her tendency to stray from the party line and the president’s priorities.

Murkowski’s a maverick. But in case you didn’t get the message, the Alaska Dispatch News spelled it out again by repeating Murkowski’s earlier statement on MSNBC:

We’re here to govern. We’re here to legislate. We’re here to represent the people who sent us here. And so every day shouldn’t be about campaigning. Every day shouldn’t be about winning elections. How about just doing a little bit of governing around here? That’s what I’m here for.

So you see, Murkowski does what’s best for Alaska, not the party. But in case you still didn’t get the message, the Alaska Dispatch News made yet another effort to school you:

“I base my votes on what I believe is in Alaska’s best interest,” she said. “So I know that there are those who wish that I would be more in line with following the party platform, but I don’t think it should come as any surprise that there have been occasions that I have not followed the lead of the party.

Missing from the article was any explanation from Murkowski as to why her “yes” vote to repeal Obamacare in 2015 and her “no” vote yesterday were both in “Alaska’s best interest” – probably because no one asked her.  She’s “here to represent the people who sent us here,” after all, and that’s all you need to know.

As Erick reported earlier today, much of Washington believes that McConnell and Schumer have already cut a deal. A meaningless “skinny bill” will pass, leaving much of Obamacare permanently entrenched. Everyone will put on a good show, of course. Democrats will denounce Republicans’ cruelty. Republicans, in turn, will crow about how they’ve delivered on their promise to take out Obamacare, “root and branch,” not mentioning the tax increases our Republican Congress will soon enact.

All of this is designed to distract Republican voters from the fact that, by year’s end, “Republicans” in the White House and Congress will be continuing to fund Planned Parenthood and most (if not all) of Obamacare, while refusing to fund the wall and tax cuts. Whether this charade will work depends in no small part on how successfully true conservatives can primary these poseurs next year.

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If the GOP Continues Funding Planned Parenthood, Christians Should Defund the GOP

They told us to give them the House and they’d repeal Obamacare. We did that in 2010. Then they said they needed the Senate. We gave them that in 2014. Then they needed the White House. We got that for them in November 2016.

Now they say they’ve hit a snag because Senate Parliamentarian Elizabeth MacDonough, a hack appointed by Harry Reid (D-NV) in 2012, ruled that provisions of the Obamacare repeal-and-replace bill prohibiting taxpayer funding of Planned Parenthood violate the Byrd Rule. That rule, named after the late Senator Robert Byrd (D-KKK), subjects non-budgetary provisions of bills to filibustering, thereby requiring 60 votes for passage rather than 50-plus-Pence. And what differentiates “budgetary” from “non-budgetary” provisions under the Byrd Rule? Aside from MacDonough’s whims, not much.

Now that we’ve voted Democrats out of the House, Senate, and White House, where do we go to vote out the Democrats’ Senate Parliamentarian? Nowhere, because she serves at the pleasure of the Senate’s majority leader.

Which raises the question of why the current majority leader, Mitch McConnell (R-KY) won’t replace her as Trent Lott did in 2001 when he canned the left-over Democratic parliamentarian. Or simply overrule her, something he and Vice President Mike Pence, as President of the Senate, are lawfully entitled to do.

McConnell won’t because MacDonough provides additional cover for his sabotage of efforts to end Obamacare. We may soon witness McConnell and other Republicans use a rule named after a dead senator from the Democrats’ Klan wing as a reason for failing to repeal Obamacare. After all, we can’t kill Obamacare, McConnell will soon tell us, if replacing it means funding abortion, right?

But even that Hobson’s choice is illusory. Inauguration Day was over six months ago, but the tax dollars keep a flowin’ to Planned Parenthood. My bet is that, by summer’s end, our “Republican” Congress will still be fully funding both Obamacare and Planned Parenthood.

It’s the latter that is especially illuminating. As The Blaze’s Matt Walsh aptly pointed out a few days ago, Republicans are worried about the political consequences of millions of new Medicaid recipients losing their new benefits if they eliminate Obamacare, but don’t have to worry about a similarly intense pushback if they eliminate Planned Parenthood funding. So why don’t they?

Good question.

Walsh answers it by explaining that, in reality, Republicans simply don’t care about abortion. I’m a big fan of Matt’s, but he’s got this one wrong. GOP leaders care very deeply about abortion, at least as an issue, because it’s a sure-fire moneymaker and vote getter, and has been for four decades. Kill abortion and you kill the golden goose funding much of the post-Reagan Republican Party. The Party has acquiesced on gay marriage, civil rights for transvestites, and government sanctions for anyone who’s not on board with either. America’s abortion mills need to churn at the same gruesome capacity as crematoria did in German-occupied Poland in 1943 because if they don’t, the Party loses its last remaining scheme to defraud Christians out of their money and votes. The trick is to keep the whole racket going rather than end abortion or even reduce its frequency.

Sometimes, prominent Republicans let the cat out of the bag, as Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) did after the 2012 elections when he declared that, regarding abortion, the party should “leave the issue alone.” Except when Republicans need money, then, of course, shout about it from the rooftops.

The ongoing Obamacare clownshow demonstrates to Republican voters just how badly they’ve been defrauded by party leaders over the last seven years regarding promises not only to end Obamacare, but also taxpayer funding of abortion.

There are Republicans in Congress who truly oppose abortion and deserve our support. But when you know that the party as a whole that you’ve put in power allows your money to fund abortions, at what point does your continued support of that party make you an accomplice to murder? If the Obamacare and Planned Parenthood farces play out as expected, true Christians need to give serious thought to limiting their political contributions to only individuals with a proven track record of honoring God rather than giving to a party with a proven track record of betrayal and deceit.

Will Trump Get Played By McConnell? Or is Trump Playing Along?

Senator Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and most other Senate Republicans played conservatives for fools in 2015. As explained in detail by Patterico at RedState earlier today, a Senate vote in 2015 to repeal Obamacare was a farce – everyone knew Barack Obama would veto it and thus Republican senators got a free chance to mollify home state conservatives.

Fastforward to the present. As Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) candidly and refreshingly acknowledged last week, McConnell was never going to allow any true “repeal and replace” of Obamacare to pass the Senate this time around.  And even the fraudulent “repeal and replace” bill the leadership was peddling finally died last night.

McConnell immediately declared that he will soon hold his caucus’ feet to the fire and demand a vote on a straightforward repeal of Obamacare much like the 2015 vote. President Donald Trump joined in:

It took less than 24 hours for McConnell’s latest sham to be exposed. As of this writing, three “Republican” senators, Susan Collins, (R-Maine), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), have said they will not vote to repeal Obamacare. They’ve guaranteed that, at most, only 49 GOP senators will do so.

All other GOP senators can now vote to repeal Obamacare with the same confidence they had in 2015 that their votes will (again) be meaningless gestures aimed at the rubes back home.

None of these three “Republican” senators are up for re-election in 2018 and will therefore have plenty of time to mollify conservatives in their states. Moreover, all of them won their last elections by overwhelming majorities: Murkowski by 15% last year, Capito by 27% in 2014, and Collins by 36% in 2014.

In other words, if you were a GOP Senate majority leader seeking cover for your caucus, but needing at least three of your 52 members to defect, these are exactly the three you would count on. McConnell obviously knew their views when he issued his press release last night and that this latest Obamacare repeal scheme was DOA.

But Trump is demanding a repeal as well. So McConnell’s latest shell game is no longer really about McConnell. It’s about Trump.

Is Trump getting played by McConnell and other Senate GOP leaders? Or is he also in on the act?

One way we’ll know is by observing how Trump reacts to senators who are giving him the finger. Trump beat Hillary in Alaska and West Virginia by 15% and 42%, respectively. Is he going to use this leverage to, for example, foment primary challenges against Murkowski and Capito as he’s now doing in Arizona? If they receive no payback for permanently entrenching Obamacare, we’ll know that it wasn’t Trump being played for a fool, but rather Trump and “Republican” senators playing the rest us for one.