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Online Rifleman62

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Re: US Election: 2020
« Reply #50 on: March 02, 2017, 19:53:07 »
Handouts??? Oprah will give a car to everyone who votes for just like she did on her TV shows.
Never Congratulate Yourself In Victory, Nor Blame Your Horses In Defeat - Old Cossack Expression

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Re: US Election: 2020
« Reply #51 on: March 02, 2017, 21:19:24 »
Handouts??? Oprah will give a car to everyone who votes for just like she did on her TV shows.

Does that trump Obamaphones?

Meanwhile, despite the media and establishment staking a huge position on "no evidence of voter fraud", more and more evidence keeps coming out. Once again, you look at these examples (Illegal Hispanic immigrants registering to vote, thousands of non citizens discovered more or less at random in Virginia and the irregularities uncovered by the Green Party request for a recount in Michigan) and extrapolate across the United States and it is clear that the problem is very huge indeed. You can argue "why" this has not been investigated until now, nor the wrongdoers prosecuted or punished according to existing laws, but the fact it is a large and wide spread problem is not deniable at all:

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2017/mar/1/noncitizens-lurking-on-virginia-voter-rolls/?mkt_tok=eyJpIjoiTlRsak1HTXpPR1ptTXpGaCIsInQiOiJWc0RVWmwrd2orXC82ZU1SdkdzcG90VGhPdDJGaHo4VVpqM0VVZW16ZVBjTUZVdHg4WFZkMDZtZ3kzcWpCdVFxcmVETnM3RVJLbkZrNWs0QnpaZGVFUmU0dnpqNGN5NGp0bDVGVU8wUDhFaWFCVnl5eFFMOHZraWVHS1pyUUFkOVYifQ%3D%3D

Quote
Thousands of illegal immigrants lurking on Virginia’s voter rolls
By Rowan Scarborough - The Washington Times - Wednesday, March 1, 2017

When Virginia Delegate Robert Marshall asked the state’s 133 local governments to provide numbers on noncitizens and jury pools, Loudoun County produced some hefty figures.

Between 2009 and 2014, the Washington, D.C., exurb of more than 350,000 residents had disqualified more than 9,000 of them for jury duty because they were not U.S. citizens.

Loudoun County jury pools come from two sources — voter registration lists and Department of Motor Vehicle driver’s license applications. The county’s 9,000 juror disqualifications means that a potentially significant number of noncitizens vote illegally in Virginia. It suggests a basis for President Trump’s assertion of illegal immigrants voting in November’s elections, though not necessarily by the “millions” he has claimed.

After Mr. Marshall, Prince William Republican, had collected the jury pool data in 2014, a new player entered the state last year. The Public Interest Legal Foundation (PILF) began canvassing election clerks county by county, city by city, demanding they turn over information on noncitizens purged from voters lists and whether they had voted.

The foundation found itself in a stiff battle with Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s elections chief, who, PILF said, did not want to turn over voter information. In October PILF issued its first report, accusing the state of a “cover up” as “thousands” of noncitizens illegally remain on Virginia’s voting rolls.

Citing data from six counties and two cities, the report found that 1,000 noncitizens were registered to vote in those jurisdictions between 2011 and 2016, and that 200 of them actually voted.

An example: In 2011 Fairfax County discovered 278 registered voters who had told the DMV they were not citizens. Of those, 117 had voted in state and federal elections.

PILF argues that these illegal voters were discovered mostly by accident and not as part of a statewide program to monitor lists and weed out aliens.

“It is, however, likely that based on discoveries to date, thousands of noncitizens remain registered and eligible to vote throughout the Commonwealth,” PILF said.

Liberal Democrats and academics maintain that no illegal immigrants vote in U.S. elections, dismissing two national polls that indicate they do.

However, the Marshall-PILF findings come from counting actual people, not polls. While it is difficult to extrapolate how many noncitizens vote illegally in Virginia, their data provide firm evidence that some do. Polls show they vote overwhelmingly for Democrats.

Mr. Trump has announced he is establishing a special task force to examine illegal voting and out-of-date rosters. Underscoring the issue’s importance, he has appointed Vice President Mike Pence to head the effort. A top Trump aide asserted last month that millions of noncitizens are on voter rosters illegally.

Virginia has become a political battleground state in each presidential election. It is now also a voter fraud battleground.

The Public Interest Legal Foundation, a conservative group striving to ensure voter list fidelity, says it is continuing its campaign. It is threatening lawsuits against Virginia’s counties and cities unless they comply by turning over what it argues is public information under the National Voter Registration Act.

Logan Churchwell, the foundation’s research director, said the problem with Virginia’s system is that noncitizens can register online and check “yes” for citizenship. They then click “send” or mail in the forms. There is no requirement to prove citizenship.

“You just take them at their word,” Mr. Churchwell said. “As long as your address does not bounce back as not valid, everyone assumes that everyone went through fine. So it’s very much by the honor system.”

Voter rolls and DMV lists

Easy access is one reason the foundation is targeting Virginia, along with other states, some of whose voting districts have more registered voters than voting-age residents, according to the census.

Mr. Churchwell said another troubling finding is that virtually none of those who registered illegally are referred to prosecutors by election officials or are ever prosecuted.

“The law is not being followed,” he said.

The exact meaning of Loudoun’s 9,000 noncitizen jury pool disqualifications is up for debate.

Gary Clemens, clerk of the Loudoun County Circuit Court, said the jury pool mix of voters and license holders is done by the state Supreme Court executive secretary office. He said he does not know the ratio of jurors to DMV records. He said he asked the Supreme Court the same question and received no reply.

Mr. Clemens said he assumes that all noncitizens in the jury pool come from DMV records because voter registration forms ask if the applicant is a citizen.

But Mr. Churchwell said his nonprofit’s investigation has found hundreds of noncitizens who answered “yes” to that question. The group’s report reproduced some of those actual forms.

“The reason we have 1,000 voter registrations who were cleaned up because they were noncitizens is because they lied on that form in the first place,” he said.

The Public Interest Legal Foundation and Mr. Marshall have attacked the problem from different directions.

The state lawmaker went after data on noncitizens and jury duty because a good number of the names presumedly come from voter lists.

The foundation is demanding that counties and cities turn over a different data set. It wants the number of noncitizens cleansed from lists and records on any who voted. Since voter’s lists are constantly changing as new people register, that data indicate that noncitizens are always on the lists.

While they practiced different tactics to acquire noncitizen data, both Mr. Marshall and the foundation ran into the same roadblocks: Local governments, sometimes urged on by the state, often refused to comply.

‘A great deal to hide’

In 2014 Mr. Marshall sent emails to 133 counties and independent cities asking the jury pool question. Only 37 responded. Ten responded with descriptions of how they select juries but provided no noncitizen numbers. Fifteen, including the city of Richmond, said no potential juror was disqualified because of noncitizenship.

Fairfax County reported 167 noncitizen jury disqualifications in 2014, Norfolk 1,223.

Loudoun County’s response was striking, as it provided the highest numbers not just for one year but for six years.

About 12.5 percent of the fast-growing, high-income county’s 373,000 residents are Latino.

The Public Interest Legal Foundation met opposition from local elections officials who it says have been cheered on by Edgardo Cortes, the top state elections official who runs the Virginia Department of Elections, or ELECT.

Mr. Cortes had been a veteran of organizing voter registration drives to sign up Latinos before he was appointed elections commissioner by Mr. McAuliffe.

“According to numerous county election officials, Commissioner Cortes had issued guidance to them, instructing them not to respond to our requests for records pertaining to non-citizen voters,” the foundation said in its October 2016 report. “Some election officials kindly provided us the original communications from Cortes.”

Mr. Cortes wrote to local governments that “you may not provide the information regarding reason for cancellation for non-citizen status” because cross-checking is done by comparing voters to their confidential DMV records. DMV asks applicants if they are U.S. citizens.

Mr. Cortes also wrote: “The department will not provide voting history as this is not covered under [National Voter Registration Act]. Only the Department of Elections may provide this information to authorized individuals and entries.”

The foundation’s report said: “This is what a cover-up of alien voting looks like. State election officials are preventing public access not only to records showing the number of non-citizens who have successfully registered to vote, but also records showing how many of them voted prior to being removed from the registration rolls. Federal law says it should be easy, but Virginia has a great deal to hide when it comes to alien registration and voting.”

Mr. Cortes rebutted this allegation in an email to The Washington Times.

“The claims being made by the Public Interest Legal Foundation (PILF) are false,” he said. “The Department of Elections provided the data the organization was seeking related to possible non-citizens being registered to vote.”

Mr. Cortes said that when PILF began sending requests for information to local voter registrars, his department offered to create a “customized report” that contained information on potential noncitizens and how registrars dealt with them. The report was quickly turned over on Sept. 30.

“The Department responded in a timely manner to the requests for data related to this issue,” he said.

A process under scrutiny

J. Christian Adams is PILF’s president and general counsel. He worked in the George W. Bush Justice Department and accused the Barack Obama administration of bias in the Civil Rights Division.

“Cortes would have you believe they offered to give us what we asked for,” Mr. Adams said. “They didn’t. Their ‘customized’ report would have hidden the precise number of cancellations for citizenship problems. They also told local election officials to press a bogus legal defense — that federal highway laws didn’t allow disclosure.”

Mr. Cortes also told The Times that his department releases an annual report on how his office and local registrars work together to ensure rosters are accurate. The process involves a series of cross-checks with other states to weed out double registrations and other violations.

“Virginia is a national leader in comparing our voter registration data against other states,” the department’s report says.

On noncitizens, Mr. Cortes’ department compares DMV records for each alien and shares the data with local governments.

Beyond that, the department’s report indicates the process is hindered by high costs and a heavy workload.

“ELECT relies heavily on local electoral boards, general registrars, and their staff to ensure an accurate list,” the report says. “More and more is being asked of our local voter registration offices to accurately and timely process data reviewed and analyzed by ELECT and loaded into the database.”

Virginia law authorizes the elections department to tap into a Department of Homeland Security alien database. But the data do not include illegal immigrants.

“No benefit or potential use is actually possible for voter registration purposes,” the report says.

Anti-voter fraud forces do not see an ally in Mr. McAuliffe. He has vetoed several bills aimed at scrutinizing rosters, including a measure this week. It would have directed registrars to audit voter lists for districts where the number of voters exceeds the U.S. Census tally for voting-age residents.

The bill was backed by Republican state Sen. Mark D. Obershain, who ran for attorney general in 2013 and lost by 165 votes out of just over 2.2 million cast.

In 2015 McAuliffe allies on the three-member state Board of Elections planned to change the voter registration form that would, in effect, make it easier for noncitizens to vote. They wanted to make optional the question, “Are you a citizen of the United States of America?” Fierce opposition nixed the idea.

Mr. Cortes previously worked at the Advancement Project, partially funded by liberal billionaire George Soros. It opposes voter ID laws, including any requirement that a voter applicant provide proof of citizenship.

A study by professors at Old Dominion University found that 6.4 percent of noncitizens voted illegally in the 2008 presidential election, based on polling and other data. The overall number could be as high as 2 million.

A separate poll of Latino U.S. residents in 2013 found that 13 percent of noncitizens said they were registered to vote. Compared to the U.S. Census for that year, it could be mean that 800,000 to 2.2 million were registered voters.

Said the Public Interest Legal Foundation: “Most discoveries of non-citizens on the registration rolls are accidental or chance. What this means is that the number of registered non-citizens thus far identified by this investigation is just the ‘tip of the iceberg.’ The true extent of the problem likely runs in the thousands, if not more. And it is not unique to Virginia.”

After Mr. Trump alleged that millions voted illegally on Nov. 8, Mr. Cortes told Washingtonian: “The claims of voter fraud in Virginia during the November 8 election are unfounded. Virginia’s election was well administered by our 133 professional local registrars, with help from hundreds of election officials and volunteers who worked to guarantee a good experience for eligible Virginia voters. The election was fair and all votes cast by eligible voters were accurately counted.”
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

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Re: US Election: 2020
« Reply #52 on: March 13, 2017, 21:37:55 »
Yes, these are exactly the sorts of people the Democrats should be standing for office.....



Quote
Don’t Sweat the Big Stuff
Politicians who cannot cope with the realities of governing should stop fantasizing about utopia.
by Victor Davis Hanson March 9, 2017 12:00 AM

The recent Academy Awards ceremony turned into a monotony of hate. Many of the stars who mounted the stage ranted on cue about the evils of President Donald Trump. Such cheap rhetoric is easy. But first, accusers should guarantee that their own ceremony is well run. Instead, utter bedlam ruined the event, as no one on the Oscar stage even knew who had won the Best Picture award. Stars issued lots of rants about Trump but were apparently unaware that one of the ceremony’s impromptu invited guests was a recent parolee and registered sex offender.

Former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg used to offer all sorts of cosmic advice on the evils of smoking and the dangers of fatty foods and sugary soft drinks. Bloomberg also frequently pontificated on abortion and global warming, earning him a progressive audience that transcended the boroughs of New York. But in the near-record December 2010 blizzard, Bloomberg proved utterly incompetent in the elemental tasks for which he was elected: ensuring that New Yorkers were not trapped in their homes by snowdrifts in their streets that went unplowed for days.

The Bloomberg syndrome is a characteristic of contemporary government officials. When they are unwilling or unable to address pre-modern problems in their jurisdictions — crime, crumbling infrastructure, inadequate transportation — they compensate by posing as philosopher kings who cheaply lecture on existential challenges over which they have no control. In this regard, think of Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel’s recent promises to nullify federal immigration law — even as he did little to mitigate the epidemic of murders in his own city. Former president Barack Obama nearly doubled the national debt, never achieved 3 percent economic growth in any of his eight years in office, and left the health-care system in crisis. But he did manage to lecture Americans about the evils of the Crusades, and he promises to lower the seas and cool the planet. Arnold Schwarzenegger, the former governor of California, likewise ran up record debt during his tenure, culminating in a $25 billion deficit his last year in office. Schwarzenegger liked to hector state residents on global warming and green energy, and brag about his commitment to wind and solar power.

Meanwhile, one of the state’s chief roadways, California State Route 99, earned the moniker “Highway of Death” for its potholes, bumper-to-bumper traffic, narrow lanes, and archaic on- and off-ramps. During California’s early-February storms, the state’s decrepit road system all but collapsed. A main access to Yosemite National Park was shut down by mudslides. Big Sur was inaccessible. Highway 17, which connects Monterey Bay to Silicon Valley, was a daily disaster. Schwarzenegger’s successor, Jerry Brown, warned of climate change and permanent drought and did not authorize the construction of a single reservoir. Now, California is experiencing near-record rain and snowfall. Had the state simply completed its half-century-old water master plan, dozens of new reservoirs would now be storing the runoff, ensuring that the state could be drought-proof for years. Instead, more than 20 million acre-feet of precious water have already been released to the sea. There is nowhere to put it, given that California has not built a major reservoir in nearly 40 years. The crumbling spillways of the landmark Oroville Dam, the tallest dam in the United States, threaten to erode it. Warnings of needed maintenance went unheeded for years, despite the fact that some 20 million more Californians live in the state (often in floodplains) than when the dam was built.

Meanwhile, the state legislature has enacted new laws regarding plastic bags and transgendered restrooms. We have become an arrogant generation that virtue-signals that we can change the universe when in reality we cannot even run an awards ceremony, plow snow, fix potholes, build a road or dam, or stop inner-city youths from murdering one another. Governors who cannot build a reservoir have little business fantasizing about 200-mph super trains.

Do our smug politicians promise utopia because they cannot cope with reality? Do lectures compensate for inaction? Do we fault past generations of Americans — who drank too many Cokes and smoked too many cigarettes — because we are ashamed that we lack their vision, confidence, and ability to build another Oroville Dam or a six-lane freeway, or to stop criminals from turning urban weekends into the Wild West? Governors who cannot build a reservoir have little business fantasizing about 200-mph super trains. And dense celebrities who cannot open the right envelope should not be sought for cosmic political wisdom.

 Read more at: http://www.nationalreview.com/article/445596/
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

Offline Thucydides

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Re: US Election: 2020
« Reply #53 on: March 15, 2017, 13:31:02 »
Why despite the foaming at the mouth rhetoric, Big Business in the US funds the "Progressives" and not the Conservative movement/Republicans/Alt-Right. This is more about the vertical class divisions and the "Revolt of the Elites rather than political ideology as most of us understand it:

http://www.nationalreview.com/article/445705/corporate-leaders-progressive-activists

Quote
Why Corporate Leaders Became Progressive Activists
by Kevin D. Williamson March 13, 2017
4:00 AM

U.S. corporate activism tilts overwhelmingly to the left. The Organization Man, whom we first met in 1956, is still very much with us. And his eccentric career since that time partly answers a question that mystifies many contemporary conservatives: Given that progressives profess to hate corporations, why are our corporate leaders so progressive? It is easy to understand their taking a self-interested stand against the Trump administration over things such as the H-1B program and visa waivers, which interfere with their access to workers and customers, respectively. But 130 corporate leaders — including the CEOs of American Airlines and Bank of America — getting together to come down on North Carolina over public-bathroom rules that annoy transgender activists? Together with business leaders who have no presence in North Carolina and nothing to do with the state or its politics?

Is it only cravenness — or something more?

In the progressive lexicon, the word “corporation” is practically a synonym for “evil.” Corporations, in the progressive view, are so stoned on greed and ripped on ruthlessness that they present an existential threat to democracy as we know it. When the Left flies into a mad rage about . . . whatever, the black-bloc terrorists don’t burn down the tax office or the police station: They smash the windows of a Starbucks, never mind CEO Howard Schultz’s impeccably lefty credentials.

Weird thing, though: With the exception of a few big shiny targets such as Koch Industries (the nation’s second-largest privately held concern, behind Cargill) and Walmart (the nation’s largest private employer), the Left’s corporate enemies list is dominated by relatively modest concerns: Chick-fil-A, which, in spite of its recent growth spurt, is only a fraction of the size of McDonald’s or YUM Brands; Hobby Lobby, which is not even numbered among the hundred largest private U.S. companies; Waffle House, a regional purveyor of mediocre grits and a benefactor of Georgia Republicans. Carl’s Jr. was founded by a daily communicant and Knight of Malta, a man who had some not-very-progressive opinions about gay rights. But even in its new role as part of a larger corporate enterprise (the former CEO of which, Andrew Puzder, had been nominated for secretary of labor), the poor man’s answer to In-N-Out is not exactly in a position to inflict ultramontane Catholicism on the world at large, though the idea of a California Classic Double Inquisition with Cheese is not without charm.––

Far from being agents of reaction, our corporate giants have for decades been giving progressives a great deal to celebrate. Disney, despite its popular reputation for hidebound wholesomeness, has long been a leader on gay rights, much to the dismay of a certain stripe of conservative. Walmart, one of the Left’s great corporate villains, has barred Confederate-flag merchandise from its stores in a sop to progressive critics, and its much-publicized sustainability agenda is more than sentiment: Among other things, it has invested $100 million in economic-mobility programs and doubled the fuel efficiency of its vehicle fleet over ten years. Individual members of the Walton clan engage in philanthropy of a distinctly progressive bentIn fact, just going down the list of largest U.S. companies (by market capitalization) and considering each firm’s public political activism does a great deal to demolish the myth of the conservative corporate agenda. Top ten: 1) Apple’s CEO, Tim Cook, is an up-and-down-the-line progressive who has been a vociferous critic of religious-liberty laws in Indiana and elsewhere that many like-minded people consider a back door to anti-gay discrimination. 2) When protesters descended on SFO to protest President Donald Trump’s executive order on immigration, one of the well-heeled gentlemen leading them was Google founder Sergey Brin, and Google employees were the second-largest corporate donor bloc to President Barack Obama’s reelection campaign. 3) Microsoft founder Bill Gates is a generous funder of programs dedicated to what is euphemistically known as “family planning.” 4) Berkshire Hathaway’s principal, Warren Buffett, is a close associate of Barack Obama’s and an energetic advocate of redistributive tax increases on high-income taxpayers. 5) Amazon’s Jeff Bezos put up $2.5 million of his own money for a Washington State gay-marriage initiative. 6) Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg has pushed for liberal immigration-reform measures, while Facebook cofounder Dustin Moskovitz pledged $20 million to support Hillary Rodham Clinton and other Democrats in 2016. 7) Exxon, as an oil company, may be something of a hate totem among progressives, but it has spent big — billions big — on renewables and global social programs. 8) Johnson & Johnson’s health-care policy shop is run by Liz Fowler, one of the architects of Obamacare and a former special assistant to President Obama. 9) The two largest recipients of JPMorgan cash in 2016 were Hillary Rodham Clinton and the Democratic National Committee, and the bank’s billionaire chairman, Jamie Dimon, is a high-profile supporter of Democratic politicians including Barack Obama and reportedly rejected an offer from President Trump to serve as Treasury secretary. 10) Wells Fargo employees followed JPMorgan’s example and donated $7.36 to Mrs. Clinton for every $1 they gave to Trump, and the recently troubled bank has sponsored events for the Human Rights Campaign, GLAAD, and other gay-rights groups, as well as donated to local Planned Parenthood franchises.

Even the hated Koch brothers are pro-choice, pro-gay, and pro-amnesty. You may see the occasional Tom Monaghan or Phil Anschutz, but, on balance, U.S. corporate activism is overwhelmingly progressive. Why? For one thing, conservatives are cheap dates. You do not have to convince the readers of National Review or Republicans in Valparaiso that American business is in general a force for good in the world. But if you are, e.g., Exxon, you might feel the need to convince certain people, young and idealistic and maybe a little stupid in spite of their expensive educations, that you are not so bad after all, and that you are spending mucho shmundo “turning algae into biofuel,” in the words of one Exxon advertisement, and combating malaria and doing other nice things. All of that is true, and Exxon makes sure people know it.
 
The professional activists may sneer and scoff, but they are not the audience. Even if it were only or mainly a matter of publicity (and it isn’t — Shell, among other oil majors, is putting real money into renewables and alternative energy), big companies such as Exxon and Apple would still have a very strong incentive to engage in progressive activism rather than conservative activism.

For one thing, there is a kind of moral asymmetry at work: Conservatives may roll their eyes a little bit at promises to build windmills so efficient that we’ll cease needing coal and oil, but progressives (at least a fair portion of them) believe that using fossil fuels may very well end human civilization. The nation’s F-150 drivers are not going to organize a march on Chevron’s headquarters if it puts a billion bucks into biofuels, but the nation’s Subaru drivers might very well do so if it doesn’t.

The same asymmetry characterizes the so-called social issues. The Left will see to it that Brendan Eich is driven out of his position at Mozilla for donating to an organization opposed to gay marriage, but the Right will not see to it that Tim Cook is driven out of his position for supporting gay marriage. For the Right, the question of gay marriage is an important moral and political disagreement, but for the Left the exclusion of homosexual couples from the legal institution of marriage was something akin to Jim Crow, and support for it isn’t erroneous, it is wicked. Even those on the right who proclaim that they regard the question of homosexual relationships as a national moral emergency do not behave as though they really believe it: Remember that boycott of Disney theme parks launched with great fanfare by the American Family Association, Focus on the Family, and the Southern Baptist Convention back in 1996? Nothing happened, because conservative parents are not telling their toddlers that they cannot go to Disney World because the people who run the park are too nice to that funny blonde lady who has the talk show and dances in the aisles with her audience.

The issues that conservatives tend to see as life-and-death issues are actual life-and-death issues, abortion prominent among them. But even among right-leaning corporate types, pro-life social conservatism is a distinctly minority inclination. And that is significant, because a great deal of corporate activism is CEO-driven rather than shareholder-driven or directly rooted in the business interests of the firm. Like Wall Street bankers, who may not like their tax bills or Dodd-Frank but who tend in the main to be socially liberal Democrats, the CEOs of major U.S. corporations are, among other things, members of a discrete class. The graduates of ten colleges accounted for nearly half of the Fortune 500 CEOs in 2012; one in seven of them went to one school: Harvard. A handful of metros in California, Texas, and New York account for a third of Fortune 1000 headquarters — and there are 17 Fortune 1000 companies in one zip code in Houston. Unsurprisingly, people with similar backgrounds, similar experiences, and similar occupations tend to see the world in a similar way. “A new breed of chief executive is emerging — the CEO activist,” wrote Leslie Gaines-Ross, of Weber Shandwick, a global PR giant that advises Microsoft and had the unenviable task of working with Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services on the ACA rollout. “A handful of CEOs are standing up and standing out on some of the most polarizing issues of the day, from climate change and gun control, to race relations and same-sex marriage.” Hence chief executives’ joining en masse the great choir of hysteria on the question of toilet law in the Tar Heel State.

Whereas the ancient corporate practice was to decline to take a public position on anything not related to their businesses, contemporary CEOs feel obliged to act as public intellectuals as well as business managers. Many of them are genuine intellectuals: Gates, PepsiCo’s Indra Nooyi, Goldman Sachs’s Lloyd Blankfein. And, like Hollywood celebrities, almost all of them are effectively above money.

Some of them are rock-star entrepreneurs. But most of them are variations on the Organization Man, veterans of MBA programs, management consultancies, financial firms, The supplanting of spontaneous order with political discipline is the essence of progressivism, then and now. and 10,000 corporate-strategy meetings. If you have not read it, spare a moment for William H. Whyte’s Cold War classic. In the 1950s, Whyte, a writer for Fortune, interviewed dozens of important CEOs and found that they mostly rejected the ethos of rugged individualism in favor of a more collectivist view of the world. The capitalists were not much interested in defending the culture of capitalism. What he found was that the psychological and operational mechanics of large corporations were much like those of other large organizations, including government agencies, and that American CEOs believed, as they had believed since at least the time of Frederick Winslow Taylor and his 19th-century cult of “scientific management,” that expertise deployed through bureaucracy could impose rationality on such unruly social entities as free markets, culture, family, and sexuality. The supplanting of spontaneous order with political discipline is the essence of progressivism, then and now.

It is hardly a new idea. The old robber barons were far from being free-enterprise men: J. P. Morgan and Andrew Carnegie, like many businessmen of their generation, believed strongly in state-directed collusion among firms (they’d have said “coordination”) to avoid “destructive competition.” You can draw a straight intellectual line from their thinking to Barack Obama’s views about state-directed “investments” in alternative energy or medical research.

It is not difficult to see the temptations of that approach from the point of view of a Bill Gates or a Warren Buffett: The decisions they have made for themselves have turned out well, so why not empower them, or men like them, to make decisions for other people, too? They may even be naïve or arrogant enough to believe that their elevated stations in life have liberated them from self-interest.

Populists of the Trump variety and the Sanders variety (who are not in fact as different as they seem) are not wrong to see these corporate cosmopolitans as members of a separate, distinct, and thriving class with economic and social interests of its own. Those interests overlap only incidentally and occasionally with those of movement conservatives — and overlap even less as the new nationalist-populist strain in the Republican party comes to dominate the debate on questions such as trade and immigration. Under attack from both the right and the left, free enterprise and free trade increasingly are ideas without a party. As William H. Whyte discovered back in 1956, the capitalists are not prepared to offer an intellectual defense of capitalism or of classical liberalism. They believe in something else: the managers’ dream of command and control.

Read more at: http://www.nationalreview.com/article/445705/corporate-leaders-progressive-activists
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

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Re: US Election: 2020
« Reply #54 on: March 25, 2017, 11:49:04 »
A bit of wishful thinking. While Trumpian populism may be the wave of the future in the US and perhaps in a spreading wave around the world (think BREXIT, AfD, Front National, the "Five Star" movment in Italy.....) there are different models outside of populism or Progressivism. F.A. Hayek is perhaps the most influential person no one has ever heard about (the Reagan Revolution and Thatcherism were largely based on his ideas), but in todays world, I suspect that the louder voices and better organized groups, coupled with more effective PSYOPS messaging techniques will ultimately win the day.

https://www.cato.org/blog/25-years-later-it-still-hayek-century

Quote
25 Years Later, Is It Still the Hayek Century?
By David Boaz 
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F. A. Hayek died 25 years ago today. His secretary called Cato Institute president Edward H. Crane, who confirmed the sad news to the New York Times.

Hayek’s life spanned the 20th century, from 1899 to 1992. In his youth he thought he saw liberalism dying in nationalism and war. Thanks partly to his own efforts, in his old age he was heartened by the revival of free-market liberalism. John Cassidy wrote in the New Yorker that “on the biggest issue of all, the vitality of capitalism, he was vindicated to such an extent that it is hardly an exaggeration to refer to the twentieth century as the Hayek century.”

Back in 2010 the New York Times said that the Tea Party “has reached back to dusty bookshelves for long-dormant ideas. It has resurrected once-obscure texts by dead writers [such as] Friedrich Hayek’s “Road to Serfdom” (1944).” I responded at the time,


So that’s, you know, “long-dormant ideas” like those of F. A. Hayek, the winner of the Nobel Prize in Economics, who met with President Reagan at the White House, whose book The Constitution of Liberty was declared by Margaret Thatcher “This is what we believe,” who was described by Milton Friedman as “the most important social thinker of the 20th century” and by White House economic adviser Lawrence H. Summers as the author of “the single most important thing to learn from an economics course today,” who is the hero of The Commanding Heights, the book and PBS series by Daniel Yergin and Joseph Stanislaw, and whose book The Road to Serfdom has never gone out of print and has sold 100,000 copies this year.

On the occasion of Hayek’s 100th birthday, Tom G. Palmer summed up some of his intellectual contributions:


Hayek may have made his greatest contribution to the fight against socialism and totalitarianism with his best-selling 1944 book, The Road to Serfdom. In it, Hayek warned that state control of the economy was incompatible with personal and political freedom and that statism set in motion a process whereby “the worst get on top.”

But not only did Hayek show that socialism is incompatible with liberty, he showed that it is incompatible with rationality, with prosperity, with civilization itself. In the absence of private property, there is no market. In the absence of a market, there are no prices. And in the absence of prices, there is no means of determining the best way to solve problems of social coordination, no way to know which of two courses of action is the least costly, no way of acting rationally. Hayek elaborated the insights of the Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises, whose 1922 book Socialism offered a brilliant refutation of the dreams of socialist planners. In his later work, Hayek showed how prices established in free markets work to bring about social coordination. His essay “The Use of Knowledge in Society,” published in the American Economic Review in 1945 and reprinted hundreds of times since, is essential to understanding how markets work.

But Hayek was more than an economist. As I’ve written before, he also published impressive works on political theory and psychology. He’s like Marx, only right. Tom Palmer noted:

Building on his insights into how order emerges “spontaneously” from free markets, Hayek turned his attention after the war to the moral and political foundations of free societies. The Austrian-born British subject dedicated his instant classic The Constitution of Liberty “To the unknown civilization that is growing in America.” Hayek had great hopes for America, precisely because he appreciated the profound role played in American popular culture by a commitment to liberty and limited government. While most intellectuals praised state control and planning, Hayek understood that a free society has to be open to the unanticipated, the unplanned, the unknown. As he noted in The Constitution of Liberty, “Freedom granted only when it is known beforehand that its effects will be beneficial is not freedom.” The freedom that matters is not the “freedom” of the rulers or of the majority to regulate and control social development, but the freedom of the individual person to live his own life as he chooses. The freedom of the individual to break old molds, to create new things, and to test new paths is the mark of a progressive society: “If we proceed on the assumption that only the exercises of freedom that the majority will practice are important, we would be certain to create a stagnant society with all the characteristics of unfreedom.”

Reagan and Thatcher may have admired Hayek, but he always insisted that he was a liberal, not a conservative. He titled the postscript to The Constitution of Liberty “Why I Am Not a Conservative.” He pointed out that the conservative “has no political principles which enable him to work with people whose moral values differ from his own for a political order in which both can obey their convictions. It is the recognition of such principles that permits the coexistence of different sets of values that makes it possible to build a peaceful society with a minimum of force. The acceptance of such principles means that we agree to tolerate much that we dislike.” He wanted to be part of “the party of life, the party that favors free growth and spontaneous evolution.” And I recall an interview in a French magazine in the 1980s, which I can’t find online, in which he was asked if he was part of the “new right,” and he quipped, “Je suis agnostique et divorcé.”

Hayek lived long enough to see the rise and fall of fascism, national socialism, and Soviet communism. In the years since Hayek’s death economic freedom around the world has been increasing, and liberal values such as human rights, the rule of law, equal freedom under law, and free access to information have spread to new areas. But today liberalism is under challenge from such disparate yet symbiotic ideologies as resurgent leftism, right-wing authoritarian populism, and radical political Islamism. I am optimistic because I think that once people get a taste of freedom and prosperity, they want to keep it. The challenge for Hayekian liberals is to help people understand that freedom and prosperity depend on liberal values, the values explored and defended in his many books and articles.
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

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Re: US Election: 2020
« Reply #55 on: April 11, 2017, 14:04:56 »
Huge graphics available at the link, this is quite stunning when you see just how small and dispersed the "Blue" strongholds really are. As well, if the demographic trends of outmigration continue, the "Blue" strongholds will actually continue to shrink. And this is without even looking at their tone deaf messaging to Americans (although the dismissal of the concerns of Americans and the economic fallout of Democrat economic policy certainly doesn't help):

http://ijr.com/2017/04/841803-stunningly-detailed-2016-election-map-just-released-democrats-scared-scared/?utm_campaign=ods&utm_content=Politics&utm_medium=Owned&utm_source=Facebook&utm_term=ijamerica

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The Most Stunningly Detailed 2016 Election Map Was Just Released—Democrats Should Be Scared, Very Scared
By Benny Johnson

The Trump administration is off to a rocky start, as every week seems to bring new turmoil and drama. However, it is important to remember how shockingly unlikely this presidency was in the first place.

Since Trump went from nearly zero chance of becoming Leader of the Free World to launching missiles at our enemies, one is left to ask: what trends led to this fate for Democrats?

This is a modal window.
 
Ryne Rohla at Decision Desk HQ set out to model American voting patterns, not just on a national or state level, but by burrowing down to the most localized, nuanced metric available: local precincts. Because of the incredible locality and difficulty of attaining such data, few have ever attempted to map the voting populace in this way. Rohla persisted. He explains in his piece entitled, “Creating a National Precinct Map”:


Election results show so much more than simply who won and lost a constitutionally-legitimized popularity contest. Election results lay bare the souls of its voters, translating millions of individual hopes, dreams, fears, aspirations, and biases into tangible, observable quantities. No census or survey can truly capture that singular moment of personal truth which occurs in the ballot box. We can identify your race, your income, a list of a thousand other measurable values which statistically imply the outcome of this moment, but as deterministic as we might try to make it seem, it always comes down to a final act of free will. These individual acts sum to make manifest the inner milieu of a people at a particular moment in time, a secular sacrament ordaining to our political priesthood.

In other words, Rohla knows that voting trends reflect the true spirit of a people, at least for a window in time. This data is important and measuring it accurately is essential. However, even in our digital-first society, nailing down the accurate voting habits of a rural district is difficult.

Precinct data, despite providing the clearest available picture of how areas vote, can be quite difficult to both come by and to visualize. There isn’t a singular, unified source of precinct-level data nationally nor even at the statewide level in many cases. Precinct boundaries frequently shift over time, especially during the decennial redistricting process following each Census.

After spending most of my spare time in 2015 working on a global religion map, the 2016 Presidential Primaries rolled around, and I decided to go for it: I would do everything in my power to create a national precinct map. I didn’t have a team of researchers. I didn’t have aides. I didn’t have much extra money. I didn’t have connections. But for some reason, I thought I could do it anyway.

Hundreds of emails and phone calls and months of work later, here’s what I came up with:
Want to see what that looks like year over year?

(graphics at link)

The huge change in the maps can be underwrote from an economic perspective, as well. As IJR recently reported:


According to economic expert Stephen Moore, writing in the Washington Times, the reasons Americans are fleeing these states are all driven by economics — namely, that they share the progressive values of “high taxes rates; high welfare benefits; heavy regulation; environmental extremism; high minimum wages.”

Here is an amazing statistic. Of the 10 blue states that Hillary Clinton won by the largest percentage margins — California, Massachusetts, Vermont, Hawaii, Maryland, New York, Illinois, Rhode Island, New Jersey, and Connecticut — every single one of them lost domestic migration (excluding immigration) over the last 10 years (2004-14). Nearly 2.75 million more Americans left California and New York than entered these states.

Also, the Democratic Party has lost seats from coast to coast on every level. According to Fox News, the last eight years have proved disastrous for the Democratic Party, handing them over 1,000 losses nationally:


The Democratic Party suffered huge losses at every level during Obama’s West Wing tenure. The grand total: a net loss of 1,042 state and federal Democratic posts, including congressional and state legislative seats, governorships and the presidency.

The latter was perhaps the most profound example of Obama's popularity failing to translate to support for his allies. Hillary Clinton, who served as secretary of state under Obama, brought the first family out for numerous campaign appearances. In September, Obama declared that his “legacy’s on the ballot.”

Less than two months later, Americans voted for Donald Trump.

From every angle, the Democratic Party looks like they're in an uphill climb, even all the way down to the local precinct level.
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

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Re: US Election: 2020
« Reply #57 on: April 11, 2017, 15:29:39 »
Huge graphics available at the link, this is quite stunning when you see just how small and dispersed the "Blue" strongholds really are. As well, if the demographic trends of outmigration continue, the "Blue" strongholds will actually continue to shrink. And this is without even looking at their tone deaf messaging to Americans (although the dismissal of the concerns of Americans and the economic fallout of Democrat economic policy certainly doesn't help):

Who gets to vote in an election? People, or land? I'm pretty sure it's people, not land. All that infographic tells me is that wide open, sparsely populated, rural areas vote republican, and densely populated cities vote Democratic.

America, politically, is its people, not it's mountains, lakes, and prairies. It wouldn't matter if everyone in the whole country moved to New York, and made the United States look 100% red and have one tiny island of blue in the corner. If 99.99% of the population live in that tiny island and all vote Blue, then by all rights they get to decide the law (minority rights respected, of course).
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Re: US Election: 2020
« Reply #58 on: April 11, 2017, 15:53:49 »
.... however the USA does have its idea of precincts and districts, which can be 'adjusted" by the elected between elections!

I was surprised at the amount of "blue" in Texas given the amount of adjustment that has occurred in that state. That cannot be explained by just the rural and urban delta, nor Hispanic vs all the rest. 

   
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Re: US Election: 2020
« Reply #59 on: April 11, 2017, 17:57:58 »
Who gets to vote in an election? People, or land? I'm pretty sure it's people, not land. All that infographic tells me is that wide open, sparsely populated, rural areas vote republican, and densely populated cities vote Democratic.

America, politically, is its people, not it's mountains, lakes, and prairies. It wouldn't matter if everyone in the whole country moved to New York, and made the United States look 100% red and have one tiny island of blue in the corner. If 99.99% of the population live in that tiny island and all vote Blue, then by all rights they get to decide the law (minority rights respected, of course).

I agree. You can take the same snapshot for Canada for the 2015 election and come to the conclusion that the Liberals would have, at best, had the same power as the NDP and conservatives.

the fact is that the majority of people live in large urban centres which vote overwhelmingly liberal/democrat and those urban centres are continuing to grow. If I were a conservative/republican I'd be less worried about the shades of a map and more worried about how the message can be made to appeal to the ever growing urban population.


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Re: US Election: 2020
« Reply #60 on: April 11, 2017, 21:19:54 »
Who gets to vote in an election? People, or land? I'm pretty sure it's people, not land. All that infographic tells me is that wide open, sparsely populated, rural areas vote republican, and densely populated cities vote Democratic.

America, politically, is its people, not it's mountains, lakes, and prairies. It wouldn't matter if everyone in the whole country moved to New York, and made the United States look 100% red and have one tiny island of blue in the corner. If 99.99% of the population live in that tiny island and all vote Blue, then by all rights they get to decide the law (minority rights respected, of course).

The electoral college was created to prevent that result. And outmigration from the "Blue" states is an ongoing issue, so while the people "may" be more densely packed, there are actually fewer of them as time progresses. Indeed, some commentators suggest the Congress needs at least 100 more seats in the House to reflect population growth and changes. Much like Canada, the results would be many new Congressional districts and seats in the West, predominantly in the "Red" areas of America.

We saw the dramatic change in Canada, when the CPC won a majority in 2011 without winning Quebec. American isn't entirely analogous (see the Electoral College), but more Red State Congressional representatives would certainly change the balance of power in the House, and the Senate and Executive would also need to change how they did business with an enlarged and energized House.
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

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Re: US Election: 2020
« Reply #61 on: April 12, 2017, 09:29:34 »
The electoral college was created to prevent that result. And outmigration from the "Blue" states is an ongoing issue, so while the people "may" be more densely packed, there are actually fewer of them as time progresses. Indeed, some commentators suggest the Congress needs at least 100 more seats in the House to reflect population growth and changes. Much like Canada, the results would be many new Congressional districts and seats in the West, predominantly in the "Red" areas of America.

We saw the dramatic change in Canada, when the CPC won a majority in 2011 without winning Quebec. American isn't entirely analogous (see the Electoral College), but more Red State Congressional representatives would certainly change the balance of power in the House, and the Senate and Executive would also need to change how they did business with an enlarged and energized House.

I'm less concerned with the actual political distribution in the United States as I am with the false impression the infographic generates.

Consider: the infographic after the last election does make it look like the vast majority of the United States voted Republican, when in fact, more people voted Democrat. Now, forgetting about the electoral college, lets go back to what I said about American being it's people and not its land. I don't think many people realize this (or maybe even agree with it). This infographic would give these people the impression that "more of the United States voted Republican", which it didn't (unless you buy into the idea that lower population density areas should have more political clout than higher population area.
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Re: US Election: 2020
« Reply #62 on: April 12, 2017, 10:49:43 »
I'm less concerned with the actual political distribution in the United States as I am with the false impression the infographic generates.

Consider: the infographic after the last election does make it look like the vast majority of the United States voted Republican, when in fact, more people voted Democrat. Now, forgetting about the electoral college, lets go back to what I said about American being it's people and not its land. I don't think many people realize this (or maybe even agree with it). This infographic would give these people the impression that "more of the United States voted Republican", which it didn't (unless you buy into the idea that lower population density areas should have more political clout than higher population area.

You could use this as a supporting factor for Proportional Representation.
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Re: US Election: 2020
« Reply #63 on: April 12, 2017, 14:36:27 »
The problem with the concept of everyone moving into two supercities (New York and LA) is how do you manage the vast vacuum in between?  An opportunity for Canadian property on the Gulf Coast.

Of course, we would have to move fast to beat the Mexicans.
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Re: US Election: 2020
« Reply #64 on: April 16, 2017, 13:30:00 »
>All that infographic tells me is that wide open, sparsely populated, rural areas vote republican, and densely populated cities vote Democratic.

True.  But what the series of infographics suggest is that - at least contemporarily - there is a disfavourable trend in the size of the Democratic-voting regions.
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Re: US Election: 2020
« Reply #65 on: April 20, 2017, 17:34:47 »
A long article on the Hillaray campaign of 2016. If the Dems are this dysfunctional in 2018 and 2020, then a long Trump Presidency is assured:

http://www.hughhewitt.com/shattererd-inside-hillary-clintons-doomed-campaign/

Quote
“Shattererd”: Inside Hillary Clinton’s Doomed Campaign”

Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes have combined to produce the instant best-seller: “Shattered: Inside Hillary Clinton’s Doomed Campaign.” The book’s reporting is one stratling revelation after another about the inner workings  –or more accurately, serial crack-ups– of the Clinton Campaign 2016 and will be on every short list for the 2018 Pulitzers as well as almost certainly a HBO or Netflix mini-series.  Allen and Parnes joined me Thursday to discuss Shattered: Inside Hillary Clinton’s Doomed Campaign.”

Audio:
04-20hhs-shattered
Transcript:
HH: Joined now by my friends Amie Parnes and Jon Allen. They are the authors of the New York Times bestselling Shattered: Inside Hillary Clinton’s Doomed Campaign. And I am amazed by this book. I stand in awe of you two. First of all, congratulations to you both for what must have been an epic pace after the election to get this out this week. Amie, how hard was it to finish this thing after the most surprising political result of my lifetime?
AP: It was a sprint. Jon and I have been working on this book for two years now. And our reporting had basically indicated along the way that there were problems, that it wasn’t error free. And so while we were surprised by it, we weren’t completely blown away, because all throughout our reporting, we were finding significant issues in the campaign that could have railroaded it.
HH: Jon Allen, you sly dog, throughout the course of the writing of this thing, you’ve been on my show a number of times, but we’ve had a number of cigars. We’ve lit up a couple of cigars and had long talks about the campaign. You never gave away any of the bigs. And I must tell you the biggest of the bit, and you know, I’ve read this thing, and I’m looking at it objectively as a reporter, is that Hillary autopsied her own server from 2008, and you never ever gave me a blinking look into that story, you bozo. How, you all along knew that had to be the lead, right?
JA: You know, that’s what we thought. We thought that was something that people would really latch onto. I’m surprised it hasn’t, you know, I’m not surprised that you latched onto it, but I’m surprised it hasn’t been more prominent in some of the reviews and the stories since the book has come out, although it’s only a day old. Yeah, she basically at the end of the 2008 campaign instructed one of her close aides to download the emails of some of her top campaign advisors to figure out who’d been talking to the press, who’d been doing the backstabbing, or presumably if anybody had been talking bad about her, and because she felt that this loyalty was a huge problem for her in 2008. So what she did was figured out how to get all these emails. Now you know, a few years later, she’s making the argument that she didn’t understand what she was doing in setting up a private server outside the State Department system. But it’s very hard to, it’s very hard to reconcile the idea that she understood well enough that she could download her own aides’ emails, but didn’t understand that by putting a server outside the State Department, she was basically preventing people from getting her information during a campaign season, unless of course as happened, there was a court order to retrieve those emails.
HH: Amie Parnes, the implications of this revelation in Shattered are actually very enormous. And if in fact she ever comes before either a prosecutor or a Congressional committee again, they will be going to intention, management of her server as a result of this autopsy. Can you explain a little more at length while Duane redials up Jon to get a better connection? What actually happened here after the campaign of 2008 vis-à-vis her campaign server?
AP: Basically, she wanted to know what happened in her campaign. She wanted to know, obviously, leaking was a problem, a huge problem on her campaign. And she wanted to know exactly who was doing what. And she had this crazy, it was this enormous sort of autopsy that she did, a post-mortem where she met with lots of people, wanted to basically find out exactly what went wrong. This was part of it. So she ordered up one of her staffers to kind of go through, read all these emails and find out who was leaking what and where it all went wrong. And this was part of all of that. This was part of her post-mortem.
HH: Well you know, Jon Allen, you’re back now, and I’m being hard on you for having a bad connection. I appreciate very much the shout-out by the way at the end of the book, but I must say that it, I worked for Nixon for a long time on two different stints. And people associate a lot of characteristics with Richard Nixon, among them paranoia. But the idea of going back and rifling through the emails of your campaign team in a hunt for the disloyal is actually kind of creepy. And I think it is the major revelation. Look, there are many revelations in the book, but this is extraordinarily insightful into her psyche. Did they not not know to not tell you that?
JA: (laughing) Well, you know, of course, we’re not going to talk about exactly who the sources are, but you know, we believe that the vast majority of people who worked on that 2008 campaign, and you know, had no idea that this had happened. In fact, we quote somebody in the book saying that they were shocked when they went in to talk to her to do a sort of post-mortem review of the campaign just how well she knew what had been going on in her headquarters while she was out on the campaign trail. And of course, one of the reasons is that she had access to all these emails of her staffers. I agree with you that I think it, you know, has the hallmark signs of somebody who’s paranoid, and somebody who also to a large extent, I think, misinterpreted, misinterpreted what happened with the 2008 campaign. You know, rather than thinking that people leaking from her campaign was the problem, perhaps she should have seen that as symptomatic of some of the problems. And you know, the backstabbing is more symptomatic of the problem. When people are on a winning campaign, when they are doing well, when they are succeeding, they are often unified by that success. They’re able to paper over some of those differences. When things are going poorly, they stab each other in the back. They talk to the press. They make things worse. So you know, I think she thought these were the root cause rather than simply a symptom of a campaign in 2008 that was, that had gone wrong.
HH: Now I want to compliment you both on what I’ve grown used to, which is extraordinarily deft writing, very illustrative. At one point, you two refer to the Bataan Death March of the server summer. At another point, you refer to the Hillary Clinton Brooklyn headquarters as like the Tower of London. And finally, Robby Mook is blaming Jenn Palmieri and had to campaign splain the deep sea bubble. I mean, it’s just rife with wonderful things. Did your editors get out of your way, Amie, because this book, as John Podhoretz said two days ago, is like an endless bowl of candy for people like me, and obviously for the rest of the country? I just can’t get enough of it. But did your editors understand you had to write this way in order to connect as you have with the audience of book buyers who love this sort of post-mortem?
AP: Oh, yeah, and Jon and I knew what we needed to do even before this outcome. We knew that we had to write a really splashy book. You know, everyone was obsessed with this campaign. It was an extraordinary campaign, one that we’d all never seen before. Jon and I owned the turf, the Hillary turf, and so we definitely wanted to get in the weeds and find out exactly what was happening. And that’s why we agreed to talk to a lot of these people on background, actually, because we wanted the most accurate, the most candid, the most open, the most shocking stories that they could tell. And I think we succeeded here.
HH: Oh, have you succeeded. I don’t know if it’s number one on the New York Times bestseller list. I predict it will be, and it’s going to be there for a long time. And it’s not going to make many people happy, because it is so candid and fair. Jon Allen, I wrote a book in 2015 called The Queen, and it was my take on Machiavelli’s advice to Hillary Clinton, one chapter of which said fire Huma now. Get rid of her. And I am feeling so vindicated in my advice after reading Shattered, because you guys write about the royal Huma guard. You write that she was an amateur, crucially politically tone deaf at times, and a gatekeeper who didn’t know how to run the gate.
JA: Yeah, you know, Hugh, I read The Queen, and I remember you saying that, and Huma Abedin you know, brought a lot of the material elements of a ticking time bomb to this campaign. I mean, there were so many storylines that ran through Huma that were bad for Hillary Clinton. You know, obviously Anthony Weiner is the screaming headline one, but she was the person who communicated most frequently with Hillary Clinton over that email server. And beyond that, she became somewhat of an impediment within the campaign, because like you said, she’s a gatekeeper who has difficulty with that role, sometimes being unwilling to tell Hillary Clinton what she needs to hear, sometimes giving orders as though they came from Hillary, whether or not they did. And also, I think there were a lot of people who didn’t feel like they could trust Huma to raise issues with her to get them to the candidate without having a finger pointed in their direction. This is somebody who I think, you know, in a lot of ways, has served Hillary Clinton well over the years, but in the end, was becoming so toxic that even Clinton, who I think, you know, to some degree to her credit as a human being, was loyal to her friend who was going through a family crisis. Even though she had stuck by Huma for so long, basically needed her to get off the campaign trail, and that was communicated, my understanding, our understanding is that was communicated to Huma not by Hillary herself, but by others, and that Huma decided on her own to sort of turn over her fate to the campaign management team. And they basically said you need to go home and not be next to her.
HH: At one point, Amie, Neera Tanden refers to the Achilles Heel of Hillary Clinton as being apologies and her inability to give them. If you were to actually to catalogue the Achilles Heels of the Hillary Clinton campaign, you would need to be a centipede. There are so many Achilles Heels in this campaign. I’m going to throw this one to you, because Jon knows Debbie Wasserman Schultz, and I don’t want to put him on the spot here.
JA: Thank you.
HH: But in the book, Hillary’s aides think that Debbie Wasserman Schultz is on a different planet, Amie. Why then did they not remove her?
AP: That’s a good question, because as you know, President Obama’s aides didn’t think highly of her, either, and left her there for the past few years. That’s a really good question. But they saw her as kind of toxic towards the end, obviously, and there was an effort, you know, she was sort of like a dead mouse as they were like eating a fine meal on the day of, you know, the day she was supposed to announce Tim Kaine. And there was an effort to sort of keep her away that day, which we report in the book. And it’s, we all kind of sensed it, but there was obviously this huge tension looming on that day, a day that they thought would go kind of flawlessly, didn’t, because of Debbie Wasserman Schultz.
HH: Over and over again, she intrudes into the narrative. Let’s talk about Tim Kaine since you brought him up. Jon Allen, he’s a wonderful guy, and everybody likes Tim Kaine. But I had Admiral Stavridis on my show on Tuesday of this week, and he’s an extraordinary brilliant thinker. Who knows what the plusses and minuses are, but he has charisma. The one thing this campaign lacked, it was like a charisma suck. It was like the death spiral of charisma. And Tim Kaine fed into that. There was no charisma left in this campaign. Do they regret the Tim Kaine selection?
JA: You know, nobody said to us directly that they regretted the Tim Kaine selection, I think, because of the reason you just identify, which is people generally like him, but you’re absolutely right about the charisma suck. It’s as if they had decided to see if they could get, you know, a table elected to the presidency and the vice presidency. I think you know, there’s a scene in the book where you know, Hillary Clinton is going through her choices for vice president, and she, one of her aides basically says that you know, she just can’t make up her mind. And the reason was she felt like she didn’t have good choices, which actually led to the elevation of Elizabeth Warren on her short list. Ultimately, she decided, our sources tell us, that she didn’t have enough of a background with Warren, and in particular, she was worried about whether Warren could be pragmatic enough and could be transactional enough, essentially, to work well with Clinton in the White House. And you know, I think they put a lot of emphasis on the idea of her having a governing partner, and less emphasis on having somebody who would energize the Democratic base or reach across the aisle. I mean, you know, Tim Kaine has been a liberal at times and a moderate at times. And, but in this case, they, instead of going for the moderate Tim Kaine and trying to reach across the aisle with him, they basically had him adopt the sort of progressive stanzas and move to the left, which made him a little bit of a fish out of water.
HH: Now…
JA: You know…
HH: I, we could go on forever about the what ifs in this campaign, but I want to put forward my uber takeaway from your book, and Shattered, by the way, America, in bookstores everywhere. If you get it for an airplane ride, you won’t want to talk to whoever is sitting next to you. You’ll just OD on this stuff. There’s so much we could talk about and so little time. If I have to walk away from the two big disasters here, Amie, the, I want to get the quote exactly right. “The map of Clinton world looked like a traffic jam on a ven diagram. No one in their right mind would set up a campaign this way. And yet, the most experienced politicians in America, Bill and Hillary Clinton, can’t get an organization chart organized.”
AP: Yeah, and that was so true here. You know, they picked really smart people. But the people didn’t work very well together. And she has all kinds of people from her time as Secretary of State, from her time as First Lady, from her time in the Senate, from her previous campaign, and then people from his world. And they always have trouble kind of making those various entities kind of work and run smoothly. And I think that was a huge problem for her. But you know, and you had people like we detail the fact that John Podesta and Robby Mook were infighting. There was lots of infighting and you know, one of them thought the other was passive-aggressive. The other one didn’t trust the other. And so there’s lots of this kind of stuff. That never really seeped out. You know, they were very good at kind of keeping it under wraps. They didn’t want to emulate the storyline from 2008 that there was a lot of drama inside the campaign. So they were very good about keeping that kind of private. And even when people like Mook were kind of demoted and with, he had responsibilities kind of removed from him, that never really bubbled up, either. So that was one thing they did pretty well.
HH: Now some people, Amie, to follow up, are saying oh, this is overstated. Their spokesperson whose name is escaping me right now, Brian Fallon, would say oh, no, that wasn’t the way it is. We were all one happy family. We would sing together and you know, do guitars and have s’mores. Was this remarkable for the level of dislike or an average level of dislike on a presidential campaign? I’ve never been on one, I never want to be on one because of what goes on in them. But is this one unique in the amount of infighting and backstabbing and knife-cutting?
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

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Re: US Election: 2020
« Reply #66 on: April 20, 2017, 17:36:10 »
Part 2

Quote
AP: I think every presidential campaign obviously has a level of drama. This one, I think, was pretty extraordinary. You know, they can say what they want to say that it wasn’t the campaign they knew, but you know, we talked to hundreds of people. This is their story from inside the campaign. This is what they told us. You know, we weren’t talking to outsiders for this book. So…
HH: It’s obviously not. Obviously not, yeah.
AP: Yeah, so we are, we’re reporting what they told us, and this is, you know, Jon and I are journalists. We report what we hear, and this is what they told us.
HH: So my second big takeaway from Shattered, the first is that the organization was doomed from the start, and you produce the evidence that make it absolutely irrefutable. And I don’t care what Brian Fallon says. The second is maybe not explicitly put, but obvious to me, is that they received a series of false positives, Jon Allen, that ultimately killed them. They had a great Saturday Night Live appearance that they put too much stock in. They won their first debate with Bernie Sanders. And then critically, they won all three debates with Donald Trump in their mind so that if you have false positive after false positive, you never know you’re sick.
JA: That’s right. She thought she was going to win the presidency. She at one point turns to an aide a few days before the election and says you know, a lot of people really bring out the worst in a lot of people I don’t understand why that is, but it is. And the aide says to her, well, it’s going to be worse in the White House, and she says I know. And you know, she knew, and we talked to people who said she was you know, talking a lot about governing in those last few days before the election. She had gotten all these false positives. And look, you know, my rating of the debates, and I think Amie would agree with this, is that in sort of traditional terms, she won the debates. But I think, you know, what gets lost there is the ability of Donald Trump to communicate to an audience in a different way than we’ve seen from presidential candidates in the past, and in a very effective way about a pretty tight and clear to understand message, whereas she was sort of a master of policy, but somebody that went on and on and had difficulty kind of punching. And this wasn’t just the debates. I mean, much more broadly, she had trouble convincing people that she had a vision for the country that was more than visions of power. And so she keeps getting these false positives, and her data analytics team does these sort of quickie data surveys which people make, they come back and they show that she’s doing perfectly fine in the swing states, and then she’s losing some ground in them, but they still think she’s got a pretty solid cushion. They had stopped polling, doing traditional polling about three weeks out, so they didn’t have a check off that false positive. They didn’t know what the state of the race was. Meanwhile, on the Republican side, as we report, the Republicans were so, were seeing such huge swings in their favor in some of these swing states, that they were unwilling to share some of the numbers with the press, because they were worried that they would look foolish after the election. They didn’t even believe how good things were.
HH: Yeah, it’s terrific reporting. It’s terrific reporting. I didn’t know any of this until I read Shattered. Philippe Reines, who is one of the inner circle, Amie, I’ll send this one to you, on Page 323. He knows she’s boring. He knows it, and he can’t do anything about it. How can you get to the home stretch after running for president for essentially 12 years and not be able to tell your candidate you’re boring as hell?
AP: That was a problem for her, obviously. I mean, she faced likeability issues and image problem, a larger image problem that they tried to remedy a few times, particularly in the fall of 2015 when you saw her kind of, they rolled out a late night comedy act, or like a run for her where she was on Jimmy Fallon and some other shows. And there was a definite effort to try to make her, to draw her out. And you know, but she’s always had difficulty doing that. Everyone always talks about how funny she is behind the scenes, and but you know the American public doesn’t see that. So I know that they wanted to definitely try to draw that out. And you know, and I think what Philippe was basically trying to get at was that he kind of understood. He got so in the weeds of playing Donald Trump and understood that he was gaining traction, and that he could be problematic for her. I think getting into that role in the way he did, and he did it pretty well, he kind of realized what she was up against. And I think that was a red flag, particularly looking back, I think, in retrospect. I think a lot of people feel that way.
HH: Now I have so many questions about specific things. I’m going to limit it to one. There is a huge Hillary supporter named Susie Tompkins Buell, Jon, I’ll send this one to you. And he, Robby Mook goes to her house in early September, 2015, expecting a kind of a nice weekend. And she lays into him, and with a razor that is very sharp and accurate for announcing their strategy, for saying we’re going to make her more likeable. And she just rips them apart. And so I’m asking myself did Susie Tompkins Buell ever tell Hillary the same thing?
JA: I don’t have reportage that suggests that, but I would be shocked if she did not. They are very close and communicate a lot. Look, I think Hillary Clinton heard all of the things that she needed to hear to make corrections on her campaign.
HH: That’s where I was going. So she did know? People told her?
JA: People told her. And she also heard a lot of things that she probably should have ignored, and I think she didn’t necessarily understand the signal and the noise. You know, and I think she didn’t necessarily hone in on the things that she needed to fix, and you know, I’m sure she did fix some things that she needed to. But basically, she gets a lot of inputs from a lot of people, and she ultimately made the decisions that led to a losing campaign. And you know, if you’re looking for a reason that, or a proximate cause of her political demise, it’s her. And that’s not just in the decisions of the campaign on a tactical or even strategic level through the campaign. It’s setting up that email server, you know, when she knew she might run for president again, and then you know, giving speeches to banks for money right before she runs for president during a populist renaissance? No political operative would give the advice to do that.
HH: No.
JA: And in fact, some people advised her not to, and her response was well, they’ll hit me for something.
HH: And she sets it up after she has basically emptied her previous server, and therefore knowing the vulnerabilities of servers. I still say that is the revelation, the big reveal of Shattered that people haven’t quite absorbed, yet, that they’ve got to get their arms around. Let me talk about two more things, and you’ve been very generous with your times, guys, and Shattered is going to go on and on, and you’re going to be in demand everywhere. But I’ve got to talk about Bill Clinton, because I wrote to Amie about Bill in The Queen, and my suggestion was to put him front and center and run with him, and put your arms around him, and make him second husband and second president, and they did it again. They mismanaged Bill Clinton. It’s not like they hadn’t confronted this problem set again, and you document his frustration, the mismanagement of him. He wanted to go to the small towns. They wanted to send him to data-rich centers where all that, you know, just get touches on already banked voters. He wanted to go to the byways and highways of America. He might have been J.D. Vance. He might have channeled J.D. Vance before J.D. Vance’ Hillbilly Elegy came out if they just turned him loose.
AP: It’s true, and for some reason, I mean, I guess because of 2008, they had this reaction where they wanted to kind of keep him, keep a tight lid on him. And so he didn’t end up campaigning for her until well into the primary, right before Iowa. And then they kept a pretty tight leash on him. And I think that was unfair in the sense that he is a really smart politician. He gets what’s happening on the ground. And I think that was part of the problem for them. But he didn’t, he wasn’t being listened to. Every time he kind of sounded the alarm to Brooklyn and said I’m kind of getting a different feel on the ground. You’re sending me to these places. I’m feeling differently. They kind of, you know, they didn’t listen to him, and I think that was frustrating to him and to those people around him. You know, and I think this time around, he definitely in the past had kind of a blind spot for her, but I think he could have maybe helped her a little bit more had they kind of unleashed him.
HH: I want to talk as well about the Russian hack, Jon Allen. Glen Caplin on Page 344 is described as the man who is tasked with the most mind-numbingly brutal job in modern political history, managing the Podesta email. And I don’t know Glen, and I have great sympathy for him. How do you assess his management of that job which I think is impossible to do, but nevertheless, it wasn’t done very well.
JA: Right. I mean, what we hear after the election from the Clinton camp is that the Russian hack, you know, changed the election, that between that and Jim Comey, that that’s what cost Hillary Clinton the election. And the truth about the Russian involvement is that we knew Russians were trying to affect the elections. In fact, when the Podesta email first broke, which was the same day as the Access Hollywood video of Donald Trump saying the inappropriate thing about, about, well, we know what it was about, and also on the same day as, I’m sorry, my mind’s blanking. There were like three sort of big hits of news that day. But the point is that the email came out, and it was the same day as the intelligence community finding that the Russians were trying to interfere in our election. The Clinton people looked at that as a game changer.
HH: Yeah.
JA: They thought finally, we have the evidence that Donald Trump, maybe not, maybe Donald Trump isn’t coordinating with the Russians, but he’s certainly encouraging people to hack into emails and release them, and they thought this was the smoking gun. This is going to convince the American people not to vote for Donald Trump. And we heard that argument not just from the campaign. We heard it out of the mouth of the candidate. Hillary Clinton said it in debate. She called Donald Trump a Russian puppet. She talked about that intelligence agency report. Any voter that was paying close attention to the election or even just attention to the debates knew that this was an issue, and still not enough people voted for her in the right states to win the election. You know, so the idea that this was something that you know, wasn’t out there before the election is just specious.
HH: Now I have to ask you both before we begin to wrap up on some huge questions, is that Donald Trump remains, and this is an overused term, a black swan of black swans. No one believed he could win from the day he came down the escalator. And I still defy people to find me adamant mainstream commentators, center-right or left on television the week before the election, a month before the election, a year before the election, saying he could win. Did that cripple the Clinton campaign, because like everyone else who reads a lot and thinks a lot about politics, they just could not believe themselves, Amie Parnes, to believe it could be Donald Trump, President Donald Trump?
AP: Yeah, yeah, I think it did. And there was a memo that was actually circulated, written by a longtime advisor circulated in her campaign among top advisors, outside advisors, that basically said fact, and we report this in the book, Donald Trump can win.
HH: Yup.
AP: And I think there were people around her who kind of knew. No one really believed it. But it’s interesting now in retrospect to see that there were people who were kind of, you know, sounding the alarm and waving the red flags and basically trying to get people to listen and take it seriously. And I don’t think, I think they did take it seriously, but I think there was almost towards the end, they felt like it was, they were going to win. As Jon talked about, she talked about, she talked to this aide about saying, you know, when I’m in the White House, and they had this conversation, there was, they thought that they had this. So I think they kind of ignored some of these sounding alarms, and I think that’s something that will continue to haunt them.
HH: So Jon, and in beginning to wrap up here, I believe you guys have won a Pulitzer here, and you deserve it because of the reporting. Have you optioned it, yet, in the way that Game Change was optioned?
JA: We have nothing to announce. Thank you for the kind words and you know, from your lips to God’s ears. But we, you know, I think we believe that this is, this is compelling stuff, and that you know, it’s, there’s new information pretty much on every page of this book.
HH: Oh, my God, it’s…
JA: And I think readers will love it, and I think it’s this visual. I think it’s something that would be nice to see optioned.
HH: Oh, I just think it’s an amazing mini-series. And the faster, the better on HBO. I’d watch every minute of it, because it’s so damned revealing. And Amie, it’s kind of tragic. Now I voted for Donald Trump, and I have great respect for the Secretary and President Clinton, but I look at the end of this, and I think it’s a tragic story. They really never, ever got it together.
AP: Yeah, and you know, I think this book details that, that they really tried. They had everything going for them. They had the star power, the financial backing. They had surrogates. They had Barack Obama, Michelle Obama, everyone that, you know, in the Democratic Party kind of rooting for them. But they just couldn’t quite do it, and I think a lot of that stemmed from the tough primary she had, the unexpected primary she had with Bernie Sanders. There was some tension there about how he didn’t really, he didn’t get out of the race quick enough. He made her spend more money than she had to. He kind of dinged her permanently, I think, you know, in…
HH: When he wouldn’t say, he thought it was corny, I loved your reporting. He thought it was corny, I’m with her. He wouldn’t say it.
AP: Oh, yeah, he said, he thought it was phony, even.
HH: Yeah.
AP: He just, he basically, they’re, we have a scene where they’re trying to, they come to his house to make an ad for her, and they want him to say I’m with her. And he stops and he’s like…
HH: He won’t do it.
AP: I can’t say that. It’s so pony.
HH: Yeah.
AP: And that kind of, you know, even though he was out there campaigning for her, there were people who thought he should have been out there more. They should have, and maybe some people detected that he wasn’t completely with her. And so all that kind of resonated, I think, and had an impact on the election.
HH: Last question, Jon Allen, do you think it changes the way campaigns will be run, because Robby Mook is a good guy and he did a good job, but he’s Mr. Analytics. Bill Clinton is the avatar of the old, but the old slugger, Ted Williams, teaching hitting sort of thing. Does the detail of Shattered change the way that whether it’s Elizabeth Warren or Chris Murphy or our new senator out here in California who may very well go for the roses the way Barack Obama did, does it change the way they run their campaigns? And if so, what’s the number one message they take away from Shattered?
JA: I think there are, if you don’t mind, two. Number one is that in order to win elections, you’ve got to have a candidate who bridges the divides in your own party and reaches out beyond the party. That’s a candidate issue, that charisma or whatever it is, that thing that allows a candidate to bind people to them, you know, in a good way and in an appealing way. That’s number one. But in terms of the mechanics of the campaign, I think what you’ve got here is a lesson in how you need both science and art, that there is an art of political persuasion in politics, and that ties into this candidate thing that I was just talking about. There’s this art of persuasion that is so important and so intangible, and you need in modern campaigns to understand the data, to know who the electorate is, to know where you want to go, to have all those numbers at your hands, but to sometimes you know, kind of understand what it is that’s going to, that’s going to move those numbers. You know, the data on voters are not static, because voters’ perceptions of what’s going and their feelings aren’t static. So it’s got to be a mix. It can’t be this sort of moneyball data extremism. And at the same time, like you point out, you can’t just, in modern politics, you can’t afford to ignore the available information.
HH: You know, someone told me once that the most important thing is, and it might even have been Matthew Dowd. Does the candidate convey the sense that they understand where the voters are? Is this person on my side? And I don’t know that Secretary Clinton ever got on anybody’s side. But Amie, I’ll close, last question for you, Kamala Harris scares me as a Republican, because she’s kind of like Barack Obama. If you had to sign up with someone right now, and you had to bet who you’ll be writing this book about in four years, who’s it going to be?
AP: That is a very good question, Hugh. I definitely think it needs to be someone who is not in the establishment, as the selection proved, someone who is the leader for, you know, there’s so many voices in the Democratic Party right now, and I think they’re trying to find that person. And that’s why you have someone like Bernie Sanders out there campaigning for the DNC, someone who isn’t really technically a Democrat. But I think, you know, Elizabeth Warren, who actually has a book out this week, too, she could be a contender. She’s obviously trying to make a name for herself. I think maybe Kamala Harris. She’s definitely a no-nonsense politician. She’s climbed the ladder pretty quickly. People are quite scared of her inside the party, but I think she obviously has vision of that. But it has to be someone with fresh ideas, someone that hasn’t been around, that isn’t kind of weighed down by baggage. I think the party is crying out loud for someone like that.
HH: Yeah, I hope you two make a visit over to the Senator’s office and start getting the access, because I want another one of these in four years. Jon Allen, Amie Parnes, congratulations on Shattered, really quite an amazing achievement, and if my Hollywood friends are listening this morning, they ought to call up, who’s your agent? Who options this for you?
JA: Bridget Matzie.
AP: Bridget Matzie.
HH: Bridget, what’s her last name?
AP: Matzie.
JA: Matzie.
AP: M-A-T-Z-I-E.
HH: That’s the person they should be calling. Congratulations, you two. Talk to you soon.
AP: Thank you.
JA: Thank you.
End of interview.
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

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Re: US Election: 2020
« Reply #67 on: April 20, 2017, 18:08:59 »
If the Dems are this dysfunctional in 2018 and 2020, then a long Trump Presidency is assured:

Assuming he is around that long.

"Practice saying President Mike Pence"
https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/nation-now/2017/03/07/pondering-president-mike-pence-matthew-tully-column/98855674/

 
« Last Edit: April 21, 2017, 09:24:38 by mariomike »
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Re: US Election: 2020
« Reply #68 on: June 25, 2017, 21:54:48 »
Another way of looking at Democrat politics:

Considering how well their message has come across since 2008 (the loss of over 1000 legislative seats at all levels) and the losses in the four special elections despite them being touted as "referendums on President Trump" and spending tens of millions trying to win these seats, maybe some straightforward laying the cards on the table will work  ;)
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.