Mid-Day Digest

Jun. 16, 2017

IN TODAY’S EDITION

  • The New York Times “corrects” it’s lie by not really correcting it at all.
  • Nancy Pelosi condemns Republicans for opposing hateful rhetoric.
  • Robert Mueller’s investigation is expanding, just as James Comey hoped it would.
  • Daily Features: Top Headlines, Cartoons, Columnists and Short Cuts.

THE FOUNDATION

“There is no vice so mean, so pitiful, so contemptible; and he who permits himself to tell a lie once, finds it much easier to do it a second and a third time, till at length it becomes habitual.” —Thomas Jefferson (1785)

TOP RIGHT HOOKS

NYT Recycles Fake News to Blame the Right

In an astonishingly tone-deaf article, the editorial board of the New York Times on Wednesday ran a story entitled “America’s Lethal Politics.” It can only be classified as leftist propaganda. The obvious goal of the screed was to absolve the Left of any blame for contributing to the mindset of the crazed leftist who attacked congressional Republicans, while at the same time blaming those on the Right for essentially causing the problem of politically motivated violence.

To make their case, the Times’ editors recycled their own fake news from six years ago — the infamous and thoroughly debunked assertion that the mentally ill Jared Lee Loughner, who attacked and severely wounded Rep. Gabby Gifford and killed six others, was motivated by “rhetoric on the right” and Sarah Palin in particular. “The link to political incitement was clear,” the Times editorialized Wednesday. Honestly, the level of hypocrisy displayed by the Times’ editorial board is quite frankly dumbfounding. Not only was it evident that Loughner suffered from mentally illness, it was also well established that what little political convictions he had were so muddled as to defy being classified, and that he was not motivated by politics.

But that information was evidentially too nuanced for the Times. Its editorial board needed to blame Loughner’s attack on conservative political rhetoric and specifically Palin so as to further their carefully constructed narrative that the Right and its defense of the Second Amendment is responsible for all this hatred and violence.

The Times eventually “corrected” its editorial to delete the “link to political incitement was clear” verbiage, but the editors kept the reference to Palin and her map — and thus the implication that she was still to blame. When lies are trotted out as a means of furthering a political agenda, those peddling the lie can no longer be seen as trustworthy or legitimate. The Times’ editors are not journalists but leftist activists who clearly care little for reporting the truth. Is it any wonder Americans no longer trust the mainstream news media?

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Pelosi’s Pugnacious Preaching

Rep. Rodney Davis (R-IL) was in the batter’s box when a deranged leftist opened fire at a ball field in Alexandria, Virginia, Wednesday. Davis reflected, “This could be the first political rhetorical terrorist attack.” Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich put a finer point on it, saying, “You’ve had a series of things … that tell people that it’s OK to hate Trump. It’s OK to think of Trump in violent terms. It’s OK to consider assassinating Trump and then … suddenly we’re supposed to rise above it — until the next time?”

As Mark Alexander argued, violent leftist rhetoric is exactly why violent actions followed.

Yet House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi was having none of it. Asked to respond to Republican comments, she was incredulous. “The comments made by my Republican colleagues are outrageous,” Pelosi lectured. “Beneath the dignity of the job they hold, beneath the dignity of the respect we would like Congress to command. How dare they say such a thing? How dare they?”

If anyone knows about operating beneath the dignity of the office, it’s Pelosi. Typical of her ridiculous anti-GOP rhetoric is this regarding Neil Gorsuch’s Supreme Court confirmation hearings: “The president … has appointed someone who has come down on the side of corporate America … against employees’ rights. Clean air, clean water, food safety, safety in medicine and the rest — if you care about that for your children, he’s not your guy.” There are other examples of Pelosi’s slander too numerous to recount here.

But yesterday, she leveled both rhetorical barrels at Republicans again. “Probably as we sit here, they’re running caricatures of me … of vitriolic things they say that resulted in calls to my home constantly, threats in front of my grandchildren really predicated on their comments and their paid ads.” She continued, “So this sick individual does something despicable — and it was horrible what he did, hateful — but for them to all of a sudden be sanctimonious as if they’ve never seen such a thing before. And I don’t even want to go into the president of the United States, in terms of some of the language that he has used.”

She wasn’t done, relating a harrowing tale of having received “scores of horrible, disgusting, yucky messages — a lot of them toward me, a lot of them toward Hillary Clinton, a lot of them toward Barack Obama. And using language that is from some of the messages that [Republicans] had put out.”

We’re not defending hateful rhetoric directed to members of Congress, but is she seriously comparing some mean mail or phone calls with the bullets fired at her Republican colleagues? We’ve heard the saying, “The pen is mightier than the sword,” but she might be taking that too literally.

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Top Headlines

  • Pentagon to send nearly 4,000 more troops to Afghanistan. (Associated Press)

  • Congressional staffers boo Trump at unity baseball game. (The Washington Times)

  • Powder-filled letters with threatening notes shut down Georgia Republican’s neighborhood. (The Washington Free Beacon)

  • HuffPo scrubs “Ultimate Punishment” Trump piece after Scalise, GOP shooting. (The Washington Times)

  • Media continues to push activists’ inflated count of mass shootings. (The Washington Free Beacon)

  • Trump orders government to stop work on Y2K bug, 17 years later. Who says government programs last forever? (Bloomberg)

  • In near-unanimous vote, Senate passes Iran sanctions bill that Kerry opposed. (CNS News)

  • Father of American freed by North Korea thanks Trump for ending 15-month ordeal. (CNS News)

  • Georgia fugitives captured after wild chase in Tennessee. They came to the wrong state. (The Tennessean)

  • Policy: Is the Fed making another epic mistake? (Investor’s Business Daily)

  • Policy: Trump will reverse the damage done by Obama’s Cuba policy. (The Daily Signal)

For more, visit Patriot Headline Report.

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FEATURED RIGHT ANALYSIS

Looking for Trump’s Supposed Obstruction

By Michael Swartz

Beginning with the surprise of Donald Trump’s November election, the narrative woven by Democrats and the media was that his shocking triumph was illegitimate because he worked with the Russians to “hack” and otherwise rig the election. Thus, we’ve endured months of speculation about the likelihood of Trump’s impeachment, a rumor that reached fever pitch when recently-fired FBI head James Comey testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee a week ago. The only problem? Comey had no smoking gun the Democrats could use to incriminate the president on the charges of Russian collusion — although there was plenty of ammunition from Comey that could be trained the Democrats’ way.

But Democrats have gotten additional mileage out of the collusion narrative over the last few months by crippling the Justice Department. It’s rather unusual to have the attorney general recuse himself from an investigation or for a special prosecutor to be appointed so soon in an administration. Yet both are now the case under Trump as Jeff Sessions — perhaps unnecessarily — backed away from the Russia probe and former FBI head Robert Mueller was appointed by Sessions’ underling, Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein, to probe the entire Russian mess.

As Comey admitted in his testimony, his intent in leaking his own memos was to bring about a special prosecutor. And there’s little doubt he hoped his vindictive move would lead to an obstruction of justice investigation.

Indeed, though Comey provided no evidence of actual wrongdoing by Trump, the focus of the Mueller probe is now shifting toward the more nefarious charge of obstruction of justice. The scummier-than-ever Washington Post reports, “Investigating Trump for possible crimes is a complicated affair, even if convincing evidence of a crime were found. The Justice Department has long held that it would not be appropriate to indict a sitting president. Instead, experts say, the onus would be on Congress to review any findings of criminal misconduct and then decide whether to initiate impeachment proceedings.” Once again, they’re bringing up the “I” word, and this time it has nothing to do with Russia. (Remember, Comey closed that door in his testimony by confirming that Trump was not under investigation in the Russian election probe.)

The speculation on obstruction was further fueled by the revelation of who Mueller’s investigators would be speaking to next: Dan Coats, director of national intelligence, Mike Rogers, head of the National Security Agency (NSA), and Rogers’ former NSA deputy Richard Ledgett. Moreover, Mueller is certainly receiving assistance — and perhaps well-placed leaks — from leftist careerists in the Justice Department that seem to be playing the part of a “shadow government.” Those leaks are one key reason some of President Trump’s supporters are calling for Mueller to be fired, regardless of the political cost. Another reason is his longtime close friendship with the aggrieved (and now disgraced) Comey.

While sacking Mueller may satisfy the “drain-the-swamp” crowd, it won’t remove the black cloud from over Trump’s head. A better idea may have come from former federal prosecutor Andrew McCarthy, who believes Mueller’s investigation can and should be limited in scope. Otherwise, if Mueller is given free rein, and if history is any indication of special investigators from both parties, we may see a fishing expedition.

And the media would love nothing better than to relive its glory days of the early ‘70s, when they brought down a resoundingly re-elected Republican president.

Finally, it’s worth mentioning that the careerists in the Justice Department who are now leaking like a sieve apparently had no interest in policing themselves during the previous administration. One thing Barack Obama never had in eight years of office, despite frequent calls for one, was a special prosecutor, and Jonathan Tobin explains why:

Special prosecutors are rarely interested in giving the public the information that their efforts were supposed to produce. That’s why the Obama administration steadfastly refused to appoint a single such prosecutor during their eight years in office, even though there was no shortage of scandals: the IRS’s misuse of its power to harm conservative groups; the Fast and Furious gun-walking affair involving the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives; the massive fraud and incompetence at Veterans Affairs hospitals; the spying on James Rosen and other journalists; and, of course, Hillary Clinton’s e-mails. Obama knew that setting a prosecutor with unlimited power loose on his government would ultimately create, fairly or unfairly, some Democratic casualties, and he wanted no part of it.

The whole point of a special prosecutor like Mueller isn’t to find that everyone is as pure as the driven snow. Someone has to be found guilty, and someone has to pay for crimes they may have unwittingly committed — perhaps during the investigation. Chances are, though, it won’t be one of the lawbreaking leakers (unless they can find another low-level dupe like Reality Winner), nor will it be anyone associated with the “Deep State” that continues to plague this administration.

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BEST OF RIGHT OPINION

For more, visit Right Opinion.

OPINION IN BRIEF

Jonah Goldberg: “For decades we’ve invested in the federal government ever-greater powers while at the same time raising the expectations for what government can do even higher. The rhetoric of the last three presidents has been wildly outlandish about what can be accomplished if we just elect the right political savior. George W. Bush insisted that 'when somebody hurts, government has to move.’ Barack Obama promised the total transformation of America in palpably messianic terms. Donald Trump vowed that electing him would solve all of our problems and usher in an era of never-ending greatness and winning. When you believe — as Hodgkinson clearly did — that all of our problems can be solved by flicking a few switches in the Oval Office, it’s a short trip to believing that those who stand in the way are willfully evil enemies bent on barring the way to salvation. That belief won’t turn everyone into a murderer, but it shouldn’t be that shocking that it would turn someone into one.”

SHORT CUTS

Insight: “Far from failing in its intended task, our educational system is in fact succeeding magnificently, because its aim is to keep the American people thoughtless enough to go on supporting the system.” —Richard Mitchell (1929-2002)

For the record: “It appears that Wednesday’s attack on Republican lawmakers and their associates has proven to be particularly traumatic for the editorial page staff of the New York Times. Symptoms exhibited by the afflicted Timesfolk include the making of assertions that have not been established as facts and a refusal to accept those that have. … If the Times followed its own unfair standards, it would now be blaming Mr. Sanders, not dredging up long-discredited smears against Mrs. Palin.” —James Freeman

Upright: “Either the United States will return to a shared single language and allegiance to a common and singular culture, or it will eventually descend into clannish violence.” —Victor Davis Hanson

Alpha Jackass: “It didn’t use to be this way. Somewhere in the ‘90s, Republicans decided on a politics of personal destruction as they went after the Clintons, and that is the provenance of it, and that is what has continued.” —Nancy Pelosi

The BIG Lie: “The Second Amendment is about a [state] militia. That’s what it says.” —gun control lefty Whoopi Goldberg

Friendly fire: “In an abject failure of leadership that may be one of the most disgraceful episodes in the history of the modern Democratic party, Chuck Schumer … asserted absolutely no moral authority as the party spun out of control in a nationwide orgy of rage and spite. … How do Democrats imagine they can ever expand their electoral support if they go on and on in this self-destructive way, impugning half the nation as vile racists and homophobes?” —Camille Paglia

And last… “It appears so far that Trump is guilty of ham-handedly and inappropriately trying to make public things that were … true.” —Rich Lowry

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Semper Vigilans Fortis Paratus et Fidelis
Managing Editor Nate Jackson

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