Category Archives: Culture Wars

Talking to ordinary people

“My country is the world and my religion is to do good.”  – Thomas Paine

Here’s another quote I had typed on a piece of my “cute” stationery in the 70s, which was in my beat-up quote notebook.  The type is fading on these saved quote loose pages, but then again that old typewriter I used in the 70s was a second-hand, manual one my Pop found somewhere.

I had mentioned that I wanted a typewriter and Pop came home with a used one shortly thereafter.   My Pop always encouraged my interests.  When I came home with stray pets, he let me keep them, when I told him I really wanted a large desk, he found an old wood schoolteacher’s desk.  The top was badly damaged, so he covered the top with a woodtone formica, which I absolutely loved.  I didn’t have to worry about damaging the top when I set a glass of iced tea or cup of hot tea (my two favorite drinks – always) on it.  In 7th or 8th grade, I needed to do a science project and science is not my strong suit.  I decided I wanted to order some liquid that I saw in a science catalog a boy in my class had.  It could preserve snowflakes on glass slides.  My mother helped me order the liquid and sure enough, my Pop came home with a microscope and slides, he found somewhere, probably a flea market.  It worked and I got an A on that “saving snowflakes” project…

After looking through my old quote notebook, I decided to tape the falling apart cover back together the other day, using some dollar store, red duct tape I had in my sewing/craft room.  It might be good for another 40 years:

The quote at the top of this post is from Thomas Paine, one of America’s foremost political theorists, activists, and revolutionaries.  He fought with words. The American Pamphlet Debate, probably set the stage for how big issues in America are fought in the public square, as intellectuals, politicians, and often, unheard of American citizens rise from the rabble, with a voice or message that will not be silenced.  America has always had a very egalitarian view when it comes to the voices that gain prominence and effect enormous influence and change.

I like The Smithsonian magazine, because in every issue there are so many articles that spark my interest.  From the July edition I mentioned the article on the history of maps a few days ago.  There’s a very interesting article on Earl Shaffer, who was the first person to hike the entire Appalachian Trail in 1948, that’s definitely worth a read.   Another article in that edition, What Happened to America’s Public Intellectuals?, written by Elizabeth Mitchell, got me thinking, again, about America’s long history with our very open, often loud public debates.

Mitchell lays out the current angst with America’s seeming dismissal of experts, in favor of populist fervor:

“This painful conclusion weighs heavily on public intellectuals, who created the country during the 116 steamy days of the 1787 Constitutional Convention, when Alexander Hamilton, James Madison and crew crafted a new nation entirely out of words. Then they bolstered it with 85 newspaper columns under the pen name Publius, now known as the Federalist Papers, to explain and defend their work.”

Read more: http://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/what-happened-americas-public-intellectuals-180963668/#yVyIdqRP8zD3WrGS.99
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Understanding America’s long tradition of public debate leading to great political and cultural changes leads me to believe that public intellectual battles, to win American hearts and minds, are ingrained in the American psyche and I don’t believe the soul of America is lost.

Millions of Americans may have fallen for a fast-talking, NYC real estate hustler/con man turned reality TV star, but even with the power of the bully pulpit of the Office of the President of the United States and his just “great” tweet storms, brimming with 140-character rants, he still seems to have a public image problem, if his flagging approval poll numbers are to be believed.  While some of the self-professed “experts” on politics and national security fuss and fume daily, via their own tweet storms, about how people aren’t listening to them, perhaps many of them have the same problem as Trump – overblown egos and constant braggadocio repel many people.

America’s Pamphlet Debate began more than a decade before the Revolutionary War.  I mentioned the 2-volume Library of America set, The American Revolution: Writings from the Pamphlet Debate 1764-1776, in a previous blog post.  The set was edited by Gordon S, Wood and it includes many of the most influential pamphlets in the Pamphlet Debate, which really defined both American political beliefs and principles and later, the very framework of The Constitution. Volume 2, which covers 1773-1776, includes this explanation on Thomas Paine’s writing approach:

“Paine was determined to reach a wide readership, especially among the middling sorts in the tavern and artisan centered worlds of the cities, and to do more than explain and persuade; he wanted to express feelings — even revulsions and visions — that the traditional conventions of writing tended to disparage.  He refused to decorate his work with Latin quotations and scholarly references; instead , he relied on his readers knowing only the Bible and the Book of Common Prayer.  He used simple, direct — some critics said coarse, even barnyard– imagery that could be understood by the unlearned.  He wrote for ordinary people and forever changed the rules of rhetoric.”

p.647,  The American Revolution: Writings from the Pamphlet Debate 1773-1776, edited by Gordon S. Wood, published by The Library of America, copyright 2015

President Trump may have lowered the bar with his effort to reach the common man, resorting to ruthless, modern mass media information warfare tactics (GOP insurgency, indeed), but Americans, even “the worst deplorables”, are not beyond having their hearts won over to American principles, defending The Constitution and above all treating other people respectfully.   Even with FOX news serving as a powerful Trump propaganda platform, America is not becoming Trumpistan.

The real crisis for America’s current intellectual class, is not Trump, but that many Americans are sick of puffed up pontificating pundits, parading a pile of degrees from posh pillars of academia, posing and primping before the cameras  — talking down to them.  Trump, while certainly no Thomas Paine (or Mussolini, for that matter), has learned the fine art of the con man, he identifies his mark and speaks directly to him.  That is why Trump relates to ordinary people – he knows he’s got to get them and keep them buying into him.  He talks to them.

The media faces the same problem as many of the pundits, especially given how many times, in recent months, the media spun themselves into a tizzy with a new, devastating revelation about Trump, which within 24-48 hours fell apart, as the facts in these stories turned out not to be facts at all.  The constant media and punditry Trump hysteria is destroying their credibility way more than anything Trump can do.

I agree with Mitchell’s view on America’s present crisis of spirit.  She writes:

“If we look back at our history, public intellectuals always emerged when the country was sharply divided: during the Civil War, the Vietnam War, the fights for civil rights and women’s rights. This moment of deep ideological division will likely see the return, right when we need them, of the thinkers and talkers who can bridge the emotional divide. But this time they will likely be holding online forums and stirring up podcasts.”
Read more: http://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/what-happened-americas-public-intellectuals-180963668/#yVyIdqRP8zD3WrGS.99

One of the things I love about YouTube videos is that I can find so many crafting and sewing tutorials.   I can watch several videos on how to make something and get different approaches about how to make it.  I don’t have to buy an entire book or magazine for directions for one project.   Often, I end up using bits and pieces of instructions and advice from several videos.  Many of these videos are made by ordinary people and completely amateur.  Yet, some of these amateur videos are carefully edited and produced with the dedication of professional videographers.  Some have tens of thousands of subscribers.

Most of America’s intellectuals and experts on politics and public policy talk to each other, not to ordinary Americans.  And while castigating Trump’s use of Twitter, many of America’s intellectuals lazily lecture and throw temper tantrums about Trump, daily, on Twitter, and of course, boringly brag about all their “expertise”.

Love him or hate him, Trump talks to ordinary people.

Note: Here is a podcast that is a Library of Law and Liberty conversation with Gordon S. Wood, discussing the American .Pamphlet Debate

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Filed under American Character, American History, Culture Wars, General Interest, Politics, The Media, Worthwhile Quotations

Belated Father’s Day link

I meant to post a link to this Stella Morabito piece, Rather Than Judging Fathers’ Household Labor, Let’s Appreciate It,  on Father’s Day, but better late than never.  Morabito writes:

“Politicized feminists—such as high achievers Sheryl Sandberg and Anne-Marie Slaughter—laid a lot of the groundwork for chore angst by zeroing in almost exclusively on score-keeping over domestic chores. Melinda Gates has also chimed in. But you’ll find little discussion about the value of traditionally masculine household projects. The hype seems to be for a 50-50 split only in the so-called traditionally feminine labor: housework and child care.

As they’ve come to realize that the maternal instinct dies hard, feminists are focusing more on engineering the role of the father. They don’t welcome the news that millennial women are surprisingly inclined to leave the workforce to stay home with kids. Hence, the focus on changing male attitudes, such as Sandberg trying to convince men that doing more housework would pay sexual dividends. She called it “choreplay.” Sigh.”

Morabito demolishes the feminist dogma about keeping score on 50-50 “equal distribution of labor” in marriage, with a tribute to two very different men, her father and her husband.

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Filed under Culture Wars, General Interest

True heroes, no capes required

The story of this rug, that  my father bought for me when I was a child, is in my 2013 blog post, My Lucky Rabbit

Today is Father’s Day, so the debate going on in my head as to blog post topic is, Should I write a sappy, “my father was the greatest Dad ever” ramble about my Pop or some larger cultural issue? Perhaps, this post will be a little of both.

I loved my parents a great deal, but I respected them as much as I loved them. My mother was a serious type person, but my Pop was the most happy-go-lucky, cheerful, practical joker to the max, kind and umpresuming man imaginable.  My parents were both extremely hard workers, but they also were hard workers with taking care of my 3 sisters, two brothers and me.

My mother was reserved around other people and cautious around new people, while my Pop never met a stranger.  My mother marveled at how Pop had this ability to strike up conversations with strangers and within minutes find common ground.  And, before you knew he it, he had acquired more friends.  He was also dedicated to helping people whenever he could, but he did it in a quiet, nonchalant way, with no fanfare, often with no mention of it all.  A few years back, I wrote:

“As a child, I marveled at how many people stopped by our home bearing everything from fresh garden produce to hams and bottles of whiskey at Christmas time as thank-you gifts to my Dad for “favors” he did for them (of course the whiskey sat gathering dust at our home, as my parents weren’t drinkers). My Dad made helping people part of his daily life, with no mention of it and certainly no desire for anything in return.”

And

“When my father passed away a couple attended the services and they expressed their great admiration for my father and told my siblings and my mother about how many times my father helped them with things around their house, This couple were newcomers to our community and I assumed my mother knew them, as I had years before moved away from home. Later as my family sat discussing the services, one of my sisters asked my mother about this couple. My mother said she had no idea who they were and she thought one of us might know who they were. My Dad’s brand of quietly doing “favors” for people could sure put us on the right path to rebuilding the American team and his “small town values” still serve as my personal model on how to treat other people. Often when I queried why he did so much for other people, his usual response was, “Well it didn’t cost me much except a little time and everyone has a little time to spare.””
https://libertybellediaries.com/2013/04/26/time-to-spare/

My Pop was an illegitimate child born to a mother who wanted nothing to do with him.  He was raised by his maternal grandparents.  My husband’s father left when he was 5 years old and he never saw him again.  His mother went through many failed relationships with men moving in and out of my husband and his five siblings’ lives.  I wrote about this in a post about J.D. Vance’s book, Hillbilly Elegy, because the experiences and problems Vance faced in childhood reminded me of my husband’s family.  My father may not have had a mother or father who wanted him, but he had grandparents who loved him and were good role models.

The interesting thing about my parents and so many parents in previous generations is they never read a single book on parenting, yet they were dedicated, constant in their devotion to their families and unswerving in their belief in their moral and religious principles.

“True heroes are there for the long haul, and you can see their weaknesses along with their strengths.”

p. 12, How To Be a Hero To your Kids, Josh McDowell & Dick Day, 1991

My husband and I had plenty of disagreements on parenting, because my husband’s frame of reference for discipline was the Army and I told him children aren’t soldiers.  The barking out orders and yelling at them rather than talking to them was met with resistance and temper tantrums.  It made their behavior much worse and escalated problems rather than solving any.  Yelling does not solve anything.  And that’s where the above quote comes in.   When our kids were grade school age, my husband came home from work one day with the book, “How To Be A Hero To Your Kids” in hand.  He told me the chaplain brought this book to him, after a talk they had about parenting.  I was stunned that my definitely-not-religious husband turned to an Army chaplain in a casual conversation about his parenting difficulties.

I think almost every parent has yelled at their kids about something, especially dealing with teenagers.  My father was not a yeller, but I recall the one time he yelled at me.   I was in my early teens and started arguing with my father about going to catechism class, which was a weekly ordeal for two years, before confirmation in the UCC/Lutheran church.  I didn’t want to go to catechism class and argued about it the entire two years.  One evening, I was supposed to go next door to my great-aunt, who was going to drive me and her daughter (my second-cousin) to catechism class.

My mother was at work at the hospital, so I started this tirade about how I wasn’t going to catechism class and I stormed out the back door by our kitchen and I slammed that door as hard I could for good measure, to make my point.  The glass in the door shattered.  My Pop, who never raised his voice, came tearing out that door after me, as I scrambled across the ice-covered snow in the yard.  He caught me by the arm, kicked me in the butt and yelled, “That’s enough out of you!”.  He firmly told me I needed to march down to my great-aunt and go to catechism class.  I was so stunned at his yelling and kicking me in the butt, that I went to catechism class without another word.

When I got home, my Pop was his usual calm self, but I knew he wasn’t going to let me get away without mentioning my bad behavior.  He told me he couldn’t get glass to fix the window until the next day, but he had already covered the hole with cardboard.  And he told me I needed to start thinking about other people in our family instead of just what I wanted.  He made me feel selfish, because my actions were totally selfish.  He apologized for kicking me in the butt, but truthfully, I think I deserved it.  It wasn’t just my Pop who had to endure my temper tantrum, it was my entire family and while it may have felt great slamming the door in defiance, that door window was the top half of the door.  The broken window let ice-cold air blow into the house.

I started thinking about self-control after that incident and I started working on my temper.  I’ve never reached the same level of calm as my Pop, but I keep striving to treat other people like he did.  We all make plenty of mistakes at parenting, but the one thing everyone can strive for is to tamp down on anger and work at not yelling.

People flying into rages about everything is an American pastime.   It’s not just our politics where Americans have gone off the deep-end, it’s all around us in our culture and in way too many homes across America.

Although, How To Be A Hero To Your Kids , is a little dated and written from a Christian perspective, the lessons are universal.   You don’t need a cape, superpowers, or celebrity status to be a good role model for your kids, but you need to get your priorities straight and be dedicated for the long haul.

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Filed under Culture Wars, Food for Thought, General Interest

Time for a truce in the civil war of words

The political atmosphere in America continues to descend into deeper partisan divides and the media’s frenetic spinning the news keeps perpetuating confusion and keeping America’s politics in a state of constant chaos.

Believing the worst of political opponents and those who hold differing views is the new normal.  Extreme partisans feverishly work to launch vicious smear campaigns to destroy the character of political opponents, without any concern for the veracity of their scurrilous attacks in this endless scorched earth information war.  With American partisans so entrenched in this self-destructive, by-any-means necessary, war of words, the Russians don’t have to do much to “influence” or work to destroy our democratic institutions.  Our own partisans are burning them down rapidly, while Putin sits back and laughs at “America developing political schizophrenia”.

Here are two reading recommendations

David French’s piece: To Defend Trump, The GOP Is Becoming a Party Bill Clinton Would Love

The other is a book, Stopping Words That Hurt, Positive Words In a World Gone Negative, by Dr. Michael Sedler.  I read this book a couple years ago and last night I started reading it again.   I have it in kindle format, but it’s available in paperback at amazon now.  While the book is written from a Christian perspective, the lessons really are universal and just plain old common decency.  He explains why, what biblically is referred to as “evil reporting”, lying, gossiping, spreading negative stories about others, is only half of the issue.  He explains why listening to “evil reporting” is very destructive and he offers many positive personal strategies to “stopping words that hurt”.  I need to work a lot harder on this.

In a country where the media and politicians are consumed by their scorched earth war of words, to win the news cycle, I think all of us need to start demanding a truce in this “cold civil war”.

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Filed under American Character, Civility, Culture Wars, Food for Thought, General Interest, Politics

Undercutting our American democratic institutions

 

The following is a repost of my December 13, 2016 blog post.  Sadly, I was wrong.  Hillary’s coup may have failed to prevent Donald Trump from being inaugurated, but the Left is determined to see that he is impeached.  Trump’s own behavior may end up helping them succeed.  Besides the Left’s relentless, Resist efforts, there’s a core Trump Flight 93 media attack squad too, who work just like the Left’s spinners.  These Trump mouthpieces attack anyone who isn’t on the Trump Train, working to destroy them.  They also defend Trump and make excuses for the many inexcusable things Trump says and does.  The rest of us are stuck being bombarded by their propaganda barrages every day.  This continuing 2016 Presidential Election scorched earth information war is severely damaging America, because America’s federal government looks completely dysfunctional and that is the biggest win for the Russians from the 2016 Presidential Election:

Queen Hillary’s failing coup…

wp-1481210676697-samanthas-box

Finished another plastic canvas box.

Here’s a rundown of the Clinton/Dem/Colluding Media talking points I’ve seen, being hysterically repeated on Twitter and various news sites in the last few days:

  • “Fake News” is a dire threat and only certain (Clinton colluding) media can be trusted to report “real” news.
  • Various incantations on popular vote should rule over electoral college – from the dramatically escalating popular vote total for Hillary (likely embellished) to contorted legal reasoning, to crap like Nate Silver tweeted some tripe that Hillary only lost in 4 states by 1%, so without the Russian hacking she’d likely have won – so based on a hypothetical situation, he created imaginary polling statistics, that he’s presenting as serious analysis???
  • More Comey attacks – Harry Reid claimed Comey downplayed Russian hacking.
  • Harry Reid claims Trump directly involved with Russian hacking.
  • Electoral college electors need a special CIA briefing on Russian hacking.
  • America needs a do-over election, because of Russian interference in the election.

The liberal media has shed all pretense of being objective journalists, in fact, many are little more than Democratic hacks.  The hysteria over Americans paying attention to Wikileaks over American journalists’ reporting or Democrat mouthpieces speaks not to Americans being idiots, it speaks to people TRUST Wikileaks (a likely Russian front) over American journalists and the liberal media.

Following Twitter, is an exercise in frantic, sore-loser talking points, most bogus or deeply disingenuous, being breathlessly repeated by a cadre of big name “journalists” and news organizations 24/7.  It’s like kids at summer camp, sitting in a circle around a campfire, whispering something in the next person’s ear and saying, “Pass it on!”

President Obama has had numerous rappers at the White House. Hillary had Beyonce and Jay Z campaigning with her, but Kanye West showing up at Trump Tower this morning represents some new low in lack of seriousness about the presidency, according to the likes of Andrea Mitchell.  I thought she was traveling with Hillary’s campaign, but guess she missed seeing Beyonce and Jay Z…

I think Trump will be a disaster as President.  I believe he’s very corrupt.  However, I thought the same things about President Obama and America survived.  I believe the same things about Hillary too, so I take solace in the FACT that America is much more than our President and we are still a very blessed and fortunate people, because we are FREE.  There are millions of wonderful people in America and thankfully most of us encounter them and not these corrupt journalists and shady politicians in our everyday lives.  We still are free to go about our daily lives, to dream, to set off on new adventures and to hope and dream.   For me, needlework is a stress-reliever, so I’m stitching away… another tissue box cover – three sides done since Sunday:

wp-1481647930697.jpgwp-1481648137864.jpgwp-1481648017767.jpg

I have a feeling the Trump years will be very productive stitching years for me, lol.  Oh, the little yarn tails on the top center are just my marking the top, while I stitch, so I know which side is the top when I set my sewing down and then go back to it.

Trump worries me, but the corrupt Clinton/Dem/Media cabal scare the crap out of me.  The Russian hacking/ interference is bad, but so far there’s no evidence they tampered with ballot boxes, so the election is legitimate – end of conversation!  The Dems with this recount fiasco, pushing the propaganda that the popular vote should count and not the electoral college, and now the desperation pitch for a do-over election, ostensibly because of Russian interference are trying to supplant the constitutional process all to prop up a very corrupt woman, who will do anything to be President.  And her enablers are ready to discard The Constitution to assist her.  I would have supported legal efforts to dump Trump as the Republican candidate before the election, but the general election is THE election, according to The Constitution and that’s FINAL!

Donald Trump deserves the opportunity to take office and be the President of the United States.  The Americans who voted for him deserve that too.  And frankly, respect for The Constitution demands we follow the rules.  If he is a disaster, there are constitutional remedies for that too, but it’s ridiculous to talk about impeaching him before he’s even taken office (which some leftist loons are proposing).

Yesterday, John Podesta, who fell for a common phishing scam and gave the hackers his email password, supported a demand for a special CIA briefing on Russian hacking for electors.  One of the chief organizers of this elector effort is Nancy Pelosi’s daughter.  The electors don’t have security clearances, so anything the CIA can tell them, they can tell all of America – so cut the drama queen act and just have the CIA release the information.  My bet is neither the Obama White House nor the CIA will do this, because they’ve exaggerated the facts.

Even President Obama has gotten into the Russian hacking propaganda blitz and it’s revolting.  The Dems are demanding new investigations into Russian hacking, despite the fact there already are ongoing Congressional investigations into Russian hacking.  Prior to this election hysteria, the Obama administration tried to downplay the Russian hacking threat.

So, the administration, where widespread use of private email was common practice, including by President Obama, now wants to champion fighting cyber-threats???  Be for real, the first line of defense against cyber-attacks is good online practices… like using SECURE systems for government business.

President Obama used his private gmail account to email Hillary at her private server email address.  Huma Abedin was sure the Obama/Hillary email the FBI showed her, which was part of a classified CHAIN, had to be classified.  Let’s start by finding out what kind of information President Obama was sending via his private gmail account, before we get too excited about the Russian hacking.

The Democrats are in mass hysteria about investigations into Russian hacking, well, sure let’s find out who they hacked, how they hacked and what was done to prevent their hacking.

It’s hard not to laugh at Democratic mouthpieces hysterically demanding an email investigation as the last ditch effort to beg, borrow or steal the election for Hillary.  The clock is ticking…to December 19th.

If these people weren’t able to wield so much influence in America, I’d be laughing, because was there ever a more ridiculous leader to put forth as tough enough to take on Russian hacking, than Hillary Clinton???  She is the Democrats’ champion on facing America’s cyber-threats???

She couldn’t even keep track of her own blackberries, she had her Filipino maid printing out classified emails in the SCIF in her DC home, she and her State Dept. staff were sending classified information on her home-brew server, and she believed her private email server was secure, because the Secret Service protect her home…  If foreign intelligence agencies around the globe aren’t laughing at the Obama administration, Hillary Clinton and fools like Michael Morell, I would be shocked:

“Former CIA acting director Michael Morell called the intelligence agency’s conclusion that Russia meddled in the U.S. presidential election to help President-elect Donald Trump “the political equivalent of 9/11.”

“A foreign government messing around in our elections is, I think, an existential threat to our way of life. To me, and this is to me not an overstatement, this is the political equivalent of 9/11,” Morell said in an interview posted Sunday on The Cipher Brief. “It is huge and the fact that it hasn’t gotten more attention from the Obama Administration, Congress, and the mainstream media, is just shocking to me.””

http://www.politico.com/story/2016/12/michael-morell-russia-us-elections-232495

Too bad these fools don’t realize that THEY and THEIR own weak policies and careless handling of information practically handed the information to the Russians.  John Podesta did hand his emails to them…

“Fake news”…. yeah, the people who sold the SPIN cycle to the American people want to lecture Americans on fake news … what a farce!

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Filed under Corrupt Media Collusion, Culture Wars, General Interest, Hillary's Email Scandal, Politics, Public Corruption, The Media

Information Warfare, both foreign and domestic

The other day, I mentioned that the timing of the Seth Rich conspiratorial story, that alleged Rich leaked the DNC  emails to Wikileaks, smelled like more Russian influence efforts to get the Right latching onto this and cast doubt on the Trump/Russian collusion stories.  Assuredly, the mainstream media and Dems have way overplayed and sensationalized the Trump/Russian connections too, but the timing of the Rich story was odd.  The story originated with a FOX news affiliate and the entire story fell apart under closer examination, but when the story broke, The Drudge Report had that headline emblazoned across the top all day.  Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh believed and hyped the story, without any fact-checking.  Hannity clung to the story, even when it was obvious the story has no factual basis.

So, the story was intended to get Trump, his mouthpieces and the Right frothing against, not only Democrats, but also to distrust the FBI and American intelligence agencies… again.

Here’s what I suspect is going on and yes, it’s a conspiracy theory too:

Remembering timelines is important and adding new information into the timeline, as you come across it and remembering that timelines don’t end – the story always continues.  The Russians aren’t idly sitting on their hands now or declaring victory with Trump’s election, they are still busy with their information warfare efforts in America – to create chaos, to undermine the American political system, to damage America’s image in the world and to destroy the American people’s trust in their own government.

I suspect FOX News has been a tool the Russians exploited for Russian influence operations since it opened shop in America.  I suspect the same thing with The Drudge Report, which came onto the scene with breaking the Lewinsky scandal.  The Drudge Report has never invested in creating an appealing website.  Really, it’s a visually unappealing site, but it’s caché comes with what stories get highlighted at the top.   That America’s political class and media take The Drudge Report so seriously is why that site garners so much attention and has so much influence.  In recent years, The Drudge Report has worked to mainstream conspiracy theorist, Alex Jones and his “InfoWars” as a “news” source.   That Donald Trump, a believer in Alex Jones type “reporting” is now president is a boon to the Russian information war effort.

The rest of this post is all a repeat on what I term  a mass media saturation strategy, which came into being with the Clinton “war room” in the 1992 presidential election, so feel free to skip it if you’re tired of my repetitive messaging;-)

I believe this media messaging strategy is really information warfare ( a military swarming strategy juxtaposed to an information battlefield).  Since the Clinton impeachment scandal in 1998, I strongly suspect there is a strong, hostile foreign intelligence influence involved in manipulating American politicians, the American media and the American punditry circles.  The Clintons launched an all-out scorched earth information war to keep President Clinton from being removed from office.  To repeat, ad nauseam, here again are the components:

Here are the components:

  • Talking points and buzz word messaging, which are relentlessly repeated by both political operatives and the media. (mass brainwashing)
  • Mass media domination of the messaging, to control the 24/7 NEWS cycle, which requires mass media collusion.
  • Relentless repetition of polling data by both the political operatives and media, to facilitate the manufacture of opinion cascades (winning in all the polls)

It can NOT work without that media collusion.

Until Trump, with the help of FOX News collusion & Wikileaks leaks, only Democrats had successfully used this strategy.  The mainstream media colludes with the Democrats and political Left in America.

I’ve cover all of this many times before, so here are some interesting bits and pieces in this ongoing information war.  American partisans have blinders on and when it comes to “Russian influence”, they want to pin the Russian influence on their American political opponents.  Republicans will accuse the Dems of emboldening the Russians, because the Obama administration kowtowed to the Russians and Iranians, to secure the Iran deal and because President Obama did not take an assertive American posture in dealing with America’s adversaries.

Trump, although it’s doubtful he was actively “colluding” with the Russians, he assuredly welcomed the Russian influence efforts, because they were benefitting him.  Trump also took a hostile approach toward American intelligence agencies and the FBI, who were working to thwart and expose the Russian influence efforts.  If there is actual Russian collusion within the Trump campaign and Russian operatives, I would expect the Russians to operate using third-party intermediaries, so they can maintain complete deniability and to mask their collusion.  In fact, I would not be surprised if the intermediaries were not even aware they were being manipulated to promote the Russian information warfare memes and messaging.

Like I said the other day, the Russians are many things, but being stupid enough to entrust a loose cannon, like Trump, who blurts and tweets everything based on whims,  with the knowledge of Russian operatives identities, seems very unlikely.  Anyone who trusts Trump is a fool, the same is true of Hillary Clinton, who would even sell Bill Clinton down the river to save herself… if he didn’t know where all the bodies are buried… so to speak.

Against this history of information warfare, which I wrote about on the Excite politics message boards during the Clinton impeachment scandal, when Trump entered the 2016 presidential race and the media started repeating he was the “GOP Insurgent”, immediately my “information warfare” antennae went up.

Initially, throughout most of the GOP primary all the cable news networks spent a great deal of time promoting the “GOP Insurgent” and they gave him millions of dollars in free media, in addition to endless coverage in their punditry air time.  In early 2016, a shift took place, as it became obvious Trump had the GOP nomination locked up.  CNN, MSNBC and major news outlets like the New York Times and Washington Post went “full fascist” mode, painting Trump as a dangerous fascist, while FOX news dug in on a 24/7 Trumpathon.

President Trump assures that the Left will stay in full-throated Trump Derangement Syndrome mode, that much of the Right will discount everything they say and that Trump, who truly is a LOOSE CANNON, will flail about and create chaos and mayhem in his wake.  Hillary Clinton would have been the same chaos, albeit in a less flamboyant way.  The Russians have the dirt on the Clinton Foundation money-laundering and assuredly they are sitting on all the emails from her home-brew server, which they would have wielded to blackmail her or leak to create political damage and hamstring her presidency.  There was no better choice between Trump and Hillary.

So, watch closely how FOX News has dismantled its Trump chorus, first with ousting Roger Ailes, now their star, Bill O’Reilly and it seems obvious Sean Hannity is on the chopping block too.  FOX News is now not leading the cable prime time.  I suspect there will be more critical reporting on Trump at FOX  in the near future, because the Russians want the Trump presidency to be an endless Reality TV, scandal-plagued nightmare, that makes America the laughingstock of the world.

The Russians don’t want a successful American president, who unites America.  We have had nothing but very extreme partisanship and a complete disintegration of shared American ideals since the 1960s counter-culture revolution, with a short lull during the early Reagan years, and then a downhill slide since the early 90s.

The mass media saturation strategy continues, as does the information warfare, both foreign and domestic.

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Trump Derangement Syndrome and the Resist Contagion

The mainstream media and political Left have devolved into extreme Trump Derangement Syndrome, even more unhinged than their 8 years of Bush Derangement Syndrome.  Spasms of Twitter-induced, retweeting mass hysteria erupt almost daily.  The Washington Post and New York Times are destroying their credibility way more than President Trump ever could, by running one story after another, with anonymous sources, that later (often within hours), they have to retract or correct, as the stories fall apart.

It is obvious that some former Obama officials, some intelligence officials, some Democratic officials, and Clinton staffers are engaged in running a full-court press effort colluding with sympathetic journalists to run their “Resist” effort, which is a euphemism, that really means trying to incite public sentiment for the impeachment of President Trump.  It is more of the Clinton scorched earth mass media saturation to, overthrow President Trump.  Yes, that’s what “resist” really means when you work tirelessly to destroy and oust a legally-elected President.  None other than Homeland Security Secretary, Jeh Johnson, publicly stated that the 2016 Presidential election voting showed no signs of foreign tampering, so if you are “resisting”, as in trying to manufacture public opinion through mass media saturation of ginned up negative stories about Trump/Russia collusion, in hopes of urging Congress to act to impeach a President,  you are trying to overthrow a President, by any means possible.

In numerous blog posts (listed in #Never Trump&NeverHillary, Above the Law, and The American Divide), I’ve covered all of this before, but here’s a list that covers where I’m at with the Comey firing:

  1. Comey acted inappropriately on July 5th when he publicly exonerated Hillary Clinton and introduced his made-up “intent” provision in the law on mishandling classified information.  Attorney General, Loretta Lynch, after her totally inappropriate meeting with former president, Bill Clinton, in Phoenix, the week before Comey’s press conference, placed Comey in a difficult situation.  She did not recuse herself, but said she would accept Comey’s recommendation.  Comey rolled over and gave a recommendation with his “no criminal intent” statement.  He should not have even given a press conference, but should have turned over the investigation findings to the Department of Justice.  He should have said, “making a recommendation is not in my purview.,” and thrown the ball back into Loretta Lynch’s court.  As soon as Comey rolled over, Lynch came out and announced she was accepting Comey’s recommendation and closed the investigation.  That was a media farce played ON the American people.
  2. Comey reopened the investigation in October, due to internal FBI pressure from evidence brought to his attention in regards to the Weiner investigation.  Huma Abedin had sent Clinton emails to Weiner’s laptop, some of them containing classified information.  Comey sent a letter to Congress to inform them, but that letter was immediately leaked to the media.
  3. Democrats and their mouthpieces in the media screamed that Comey needed to be fired.  All sorts of leaks poured out of the FBI in those days the Clinton email investigation was reopened, like leaks about ongoing criminal investigations in several states into Clinton Foundation corruption.  Everyone from Nancy Pelosi to Elijah Cummings was screaming that Comey should be fired and that the FBI was just a bunch of “Trump fanboys”.
  4. Comey closed the reopened Clinton investigation and the media moved into high-gear with the Trump/Russia collusion story
  5. Trump will say or do anything, much of it seemingly based on how he reacts to media coverage of himself.  Trump seems very obsessed with looking “strong”, “tough”, “smart” and “a good leader”.  He loves to play games and manipulate people, especially manipulating his aides vying for his favor and manipulating journalists and pundits, who went all-in on running the Clinton scorched earth propaganda campaign during the election.
  6. The Clinton campaign ran and continues to run a scorched earth media effort to destroy Trump.
  7.   Wikileaks appears to be a Russian front operation.  Putin appears to have made a calculation to interfere in the US election by leaking information that not only damaged Hillary Clinton, it discredited the media as being little more than an arm of the Democratic Party, colluding to run Clinton talking points and aiding in advancing the Clinton campaign’s media strategy.  Many prominent journalists sat on negative Trump stories during the GOP primary, holding them to unleash in the general election to aid Hillary Clinton.  They were active participants in the Clinton scorched earth effort to paint Trump as a fascist and bury him in dirt during the general election.  Wikileaks released numerous stolen emails between journalists and DNC officials/ Clinton staffers showing media collusion to advance the Clinton campaign’s media messaging.
  8.  President Trump, both in the campaign and as president, has made many disturbing comments, from praising Wikileaks and Putin, to disparaging US intelligence agencies.
  9.  President Trump has several associates, who have been involved in his 2016 campaign and/or cabinet, who have some disturbing connections to the Russian government.
  10. There is reporting that the FBI recently requested more resources for their Russian interference in the 2016 election/Trump associates’ connection to Russians investigation, thus raising serious questions into the timing of Trump’s firing of Comey.

Does any of this amount to collusion with the Russians or treason?

Nope

But it sure does indicate a need for more investigation.

Kevin Williamson, at National Review,  covered it way better than I could:

No, It is not ‘Treason

And as a final reminder, with the Left it always boils down to redefining what words mean and that is part of a very long effort in their long march through our institutions, which I have written about many times, like here, here, here and here.

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