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June 7, 2024

Friday: Below the Fold

Joe won’t pardon Hunter, jobs report context, DeSantis once again schools Disney, and more.

Politics

  • Biden says he won’t pardon Hunter: As our Nate Jackson noted yesterday, “The biggest difference between Hunter [Biden’s] case and [Donald] Trump’s is that, if he wins, Trump can’t pardon himself of a state conviction. Joe Biden can pardon Hunter Biden.” Later yesterday, in an interview with ABC News anchor David Muir while in Normandy, the president said he would not pardon his son. “Will you accept the jury’s outcome, their verdict, no matter what it is?” Muir asked. “Yes,” Biden responded weakly after a pause. “And have you ruled out a pardon for your son?” Muir followed up. “Yes,” Biden responded again in his tired, old grandpa voice. And that was it. Muir thus accomplished a big headline for Biden — that he respects the Rule of Law while Donald Trump supposedly does not. Biden had just said of his challenger, “He got a fair trial. The jury spoke like they speak in all cases, and it should be respected.” Yet Biden also said he’d never discussed business with his son. He lied. Indeed, Biden lies about a lot of things. Is a pitifully weak one-word answer to the question the final word? Don’t bet on it. Because Joe Biden’s other maxim is, “No one f**ks with a Biden.”

  • President Biden still has not met Hunter Biden’s five-year-old daughter (National Review)

  • Biden claims he knew Putin 40 years ago — when he was undercover KGB agent (Washington Free Beacon)

  • Humor: Aides claim Biden nailed a 360 double flip McTwist on the White House half pipe but oh darn the reporters just missed it (Babylon Bee)

  • Trouble with “2000 Mules”: It’s an article of faith among diehard Democrats that Joe Biden got all 81 million of those votes on the up-and-up. Sentient beings, though, don’t buy it — not with tens of millions of mail-in ballots flooding the 2020 electoral zone, and not with the power-mad Democrats’ penchant for cheating. Dinesh D'Souza’s documentary about this very topic, “2000 Mules,” was supposed to be the smoking-gun proof that Dems stole the 2020 election, and we wrote as much here. Then, two weeks later, we hedged our bet. Now, The Wall Street Journal reports, “Salem Media Group, which co-produced this Trumpian fantasy mockumentary, ceased distribution of the film and issued an apology to Mark Andrews, one of the Georgia voters depicted as an illegal ballot ‘mule.’” Andrews was depicted as having stuffed ballots into a collection box, but after the Georgia Bureau of Investigation cleared him of any wrongdoing, he settled his defamation suit with Salem “for a significant amount.” The Journal’s editors apparently think this means that cellphone geolocation is an unreliable investigative technology, even though it’s been used to locate people at crime scenes and thereby put them in prison. And they believe that if D'Souza blew it with Andrews, then he blew it with everyone else he geolocated. Conservatives bear a higher burden of accuracy than our leftist counterparts, and “2000 Mules” didn’t meet that burden. We look forward to hearing D'Souza’s mea culpa for the Andrews failure and, if he sees fit, his defense of the rest of the film.

  • Steve Bannon ordered to report to prison by July 1 (NY Post)

  • Netanyahu to defend “just war” in July 24 speech to joint session of U.S. Congress (Times of Israel)

Economy

  • A good jobs report, but… “The U.S. economy added far more jobs than expected in May, countering fears of a slowdown in the labor market,” reports CNBC of the 272,000 jobs added in May. That’s the good news. Unfortunately, the bad news is at least five-fold. First, the unemployment rate rose to 4% for the first time since January 2022 as more people entered the jobs market and didn’t find one. Second, wages are finally exceeding the current inflation rate, though wages haven’t caught up to the cumulative 20% inflation under Joe Biden. Third, May might have exceeded expectations, but as we noted yesterday, last year’s officially reported jobs numbers were overstated by a whopping 730,000. Fourth, California fast-food restaurants have slashed 10,000 jobs since the state raised the minimum wage to $20. The minimum wage is $0 when you don’t have a job. Finally, as we noted Tuesday, half of the jobs added since 2019 are located in just two states: Texas and Florida. The Leftmedia always obscures such context when trying to boost Biden’s poll numbers.

  • Youngkin gets rid of Virginia’s Cali emissions standards: It’s said that as California goes, so goes the rest of the country. But Glenn Youngkin isn’t buying it. Virginia’s outstanding Republican governor announced this week that, after having conferred with Attorney General Jason Miyares, he’s withdrawing his state from subservience to the Once-Golden State’s extreme auto emissions standards. “Once again,” Youngkin said in a news release, “Virginia is declaring independence — this time from a misguided electric vehicle mandate imposed by unelected leaders nearly 3,000 miles away from the Commonwealth. The idea that government should tell people what kind of car they can or can’t purchase is fundamentally wrong. Virginians deserve the freedom to choose which vehicles best fit the needs of their families and businesses.” Are other free-thinking governors taking note? If the 50 states are indeed our laboratories for republican democracy, then Youngkin shouldn’t be the only one standing up against this California scheming.

Health

  • Whoa, those COVID vaccines might be killing folks? Among the more than seven million worldwide deaths that have been attributed to the Wuhan coronavirus, one casualty stands out among all others: Liberty. Whether the penalty was getting kicked out of college or kicked out of the military, the Left’s anti-scientific insistence that even healthy young people get the stick was, at the time, infuriating to those who believe in individual liberty. And now, that violation seems even more monstrous. As the New York Post reports, a new study from the Netherlands’ Vrije Universiteit suggests that the vax could be partly to blame for an “unprecedented” increase in deaths in both the U.S. and other Western countries in the years since the pandemic hit. “Analyzing mortality data from 47 Western countries, scientists … found that excess mortality has ‘remained high’ since 2020 — despite the widespread rollout of COVID vaccines and various containment measures.” How many excess deaths are we talking about? In the U.S., Europe, and Australia since 2020, that number is north of three million. Clearly, a reckoning is due. Will the pro-vax forces in government and the media stop staring at their shoes?

Culture

  • DeSantis once again schools Disney: You’d think by now they’d have learned their lesson. You’d think. And you’d be wrong. Florida’s Ron DeSantis, America’s Best Governor™, chalked up yet another win this week, as Disney announced plans for investing $17 billion for a fifth theme park in the Sunshine State. Strange, but wasn’t Disney just a few months ago trying to sue the pants off the DeSantis administration and threatening to skedaddle to more groomer-friendly climes? And now here it is inking a 15-year deal with the dreaded DeSantis. It’s “a win for the mouse-eared masses and the governor’s mansion,” says National Review’s Luther Ray Abel. “This deal comes as Disney is reorienting itself, cutting costs by $7.5 billion and focusing its studios away from streaming, a loser, and back on profitable franchises. Disney CEO Bob Iger is busy killing the darlings of his protegé predecessor while deflecting criticism of Disney’s perceived wokeness.” Disney has a long, long way to go if it’s ever going to rebuild its once-proud brand and recover its stockholder value. But ceasing to pick fights with a popular and family-friendly governor is a step in the right direction.

  • Google sullies D-Day: Thursday was the 80th anniversary of D-Day, likely the last major anniversary on which any of the Veterans of that day are alive. The youngest of them are approaching 100. For many days of recognition, Google reworks its homepage to honor the occasion. Not this one. Google has even neglected Easter, celebrated by more than a billion people worldwide. Instead, many of Google’s redesigns are to honor left-wing people or causes. Yesterday’s featured lesbian feminist activist and author Jeanne Córdova, “a pioneering leader of the LGBTQ+ rights movement.” Pride Month, gross as it is, trumps everything else. Meanwhile, Google-owned YouTube announced new age restrictions on some gun-related videos because it wants to “to make sure we are drawing the line at the right place.” Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg (you may have heard of him) applauded the “commonsense fixes.” We’re certainly not defending every gun video on YouTube — for example, video clips from extremely violent movies are available for any and all age viewers. But it’s certainly ironic that the heroes of D-Day used guns to liberate Europe, and all Google can do is restrict gun videos and honor a lesbian.

  • Covenant shooter cited transgender “rights” in shooting spree manifesto, contradicting official claims (Daily Wire)

  • Newly crowned Miss Maryland USA is a man (Daily Wire)

American Spirit

  • Conservative game-show host rides into the sunset: “Somewhere along the line, we became more than a popular show,” mused Pat Sajak. “We became part of the popular culture.” After 41 seasons and more than 8,000 episodes (a record for a single host), the 77-year-old “Wheel of Fortune” icon’s final episode will air tonight, though it was taped on April 5. Sajak began as a DJ on Armed Forces Radio while serving in Vietnam, moving to a local Los Angeles TV station before being chosen for the “Wheel” gig. “Throughout his stint as host,” reports Fox News, “Sajak was nominated for 23 Daytime Emmy Awards, winning three.” Sajak not only managed fame and, er, fortune with class, he did it without scandal and as a conservative. The Federalist’s Chris Jacobs notes, “During his tenure, he has served as a director of Eagle Publishing, of the Claremont Institute, and as chair of the Board of Trustees of Hillsdale College since 2019.” Nevertheless, Sajak said, “I’d rather leave a couple of years too early than a couple of years too late.” Longtime “Wheel” fixture Vanna White will remain with the show at least until 2026. Ryan Seacrest will take Sajak’s place next season, though he said, “No one can replace him.”

For the Executive Summary archive, click here.


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