IN TODAY’S EDITION
- Democrats lose their cynical shutdown showdown big time.
- FBI partisanship is troubling enough, but the stakes are way too high.
- Words mean things. Beware when people redefine them for a political agenda.
- CA Democrats may confiscate half of tax cut savings.
- Plus our Daily Features: Top Headlines, Memes, Cartoons, Columnists and Short Cuts.
“There is not a more important and fundamental principle in legislation, than that the ways and means ought always to face the public engagements; that our appropriations should ever go hand in hand with our promises.” —James Madison (1790)
By Thomas Gallatin
Shortly after noon on Monday, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Sumer (D-NY) agreed to end the Democrats’ government shutdown, with the Senate voting 81-18 to break the filibuster over the spending bill. Schumer stated, “After several discussions, offers and counteroffers, the Republican leader and I have come to an arrangement. We will vote today to reopen the government to continue negotiating a global agreement.” You wouldn’t know it from that statement, but Schumer and his party lost this one big time.
The deal will advance a three-week spending bill rather than the four-week spending bill passed by the House, and it includes a six-year funding extension for the Child Health Insurance Program (CHIP). In the agreement Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has promised to allow an immigration bill to reach the floor next month. However, there was no guarantee that the House will do the same.
It’s interesting to note that several Democrat senators who are presumed to have their eyes on a presidential run in 2020 voted against ending the filibuster. These include Cory Booker (NJ), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Elizabeth Warren (MA), Kirsten Gillibrand (NY) and Kamala Harris (CA). Got to keep up the “cred” with the leftist base.
Yet Schumer’s rather quick decision to end the filibuster without gaining any significant concessions from Republicans demonstrates just how toxic the shutdown was proving to be for Democrats. A CNN poll last week showed that 56% of Americans favored approving a budget deal before working out any immigration deal on DACA. Again, that’s CNN. That combined with the fact that President Donald Trump and GOP leaders had clearly stated that they were willing to work on DACA but only separate from the budget deal also worked against Schumer’s kamikaze strategy. And now Democrats have egg on their faces for what amounted to little more than a political temper tantrum.
The bottom line is this: Democrats are making their political play for future illegal immigrant votes a higher priority than the interests of American citizens. They’re advocating for immigrant worker inflation that results in wage deflation. Their traditional blue-collar constituents best take notice.
As for the enormous cost to taxpayers, while the ranks of distressed American veterans are growing, Democrats are offering free housing, medical treatment, food and education for illegal immigrants. Every American should be offended.
Adding yet another chapter to the deep state corruption narrative, more news has come out regarding the FBI’s handling of the Hillary Clinton email investigation courtesy of text messages from those two FBI love-birds, agent Peter Strzok and lawyer Lisa Page. Since the discovery of the text messages between these two, both of whom worked on the Clinton investigation and were later a part of Robert Mueller’s investigation into supposed collusion between Donald Trump and Russia, clear implications of deep state politicization and corruption have come to light.
This is what is known thus far.
Strzok and Page were both clearly politically biased. They were pro-Hillary and anti-Trump. That’s not a crime, but questions have been raised as to whether they acted within the FBI in support of Clinton and against Trump. Investigators who have been combing over 50,000 text messages sent between the two have unearthed some interesting and rather troubling revelations, including references to a “secret society” presumably within the FBI that plotted against Trump. Rep. John Radcliffe (R-TX) states, “We learned today about information that in the immediate aftermath of [Trump’s] election, there may have been a ‘secret society’ of folks within the Department of Justice and the FBI, to include Page and Strzok, working against him. I’m not saying that actually happened, but when folks speak in those terms, they need to come forward to explain the context.”
Strzok and Page’s texts also indicate that the decision to exonerate Clinton was determined well before the investigation was concluded and that Barack Obama’s Attorney General Loretta Lynch was privy to the outcome. Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) said, “It’s really clear to me that the decision was made in May of 2016 — two months before [James Comey’s] press conference. Of course Loretta Lynch knew [Hillary Clinton] wasn’t going to be charged. Everyone except the public knew that she was not going to be charged.” This would seem to corroborate the speculation that the infamous Bill Clinton/Lynch tarmac meeting in June 2016 was meant to alert Hillary that the fix was in, and that she need not worry about the outcome of the FBI’s investigation.
Then there is the conspicuously convenient missing text messages from Strzok and Page over the first five months of President Trump’s first year. Responding to this revelation, Attorney General Jeff Sessions said Monday that a review is “already underway to ascertain what occurred and to determine if these records can be recovered in any other way. If any wrongdoing were to be found to have caused this gap, appropriate legal disciplinary action measure will be taken.” He added, “We will leave no stone unturned to confirm with certainty why these text messages are not available to be produced and will use every technology available to determine whether the missing messages are recoverable from another source. If we are successful, we will update the congressional committees immediately.”
This news, along with the FISA abuse memo, has several congressional Republicans calling for the appointment of a second special council tasked with investigating the FBI and Justice Department and its handling of both the Clinton investigation and the Russia meddling probe.
A closing observation: While it may be inevitable that individuals working within the government will express partisan bias, what makes it a larger issue with higher stakes is the fact that the federal government has become so powerful — too powerful. A return to federalism and a decentralized government would go a long way toward mitigating what has become a win-at-all-costs mindset among Washington elites.
IMF: Tax reform projected to push GDP growth higher, now expected to rise to 2.7% in 2018 (The Washington Free Beacon)
Republicans hope to release “jaw-dropping” memo on surveillance abuses (Fox News)
Four in five Americans want less immigration (The Washington Free Beacon)
Early 2018 Democrat win: Pennsylvania court orders new congressional map due to gerrymandering (Reuters)
NFL rejects Super Bowl ad from veterans group that asks players to stand during anthem (Stars and Stripes)
Hawaii governor slow to correct missile alert because he forgot Twitter username, password (Fox News)
Michigan man allegedly threatened to gun down CNN employees for fake news (NBC News)
Trump applies tariffs to solar panels, washing machines (Associated Press)
Vermont becomes first state to legalize marijuana through state legislature (The Washington Free Beacon)
ObamaCare is fueling the nation’s opioid epidemic? Sure looks like it (Investor’s Business Daily)
Policy: Get rid of government shutdowns forever (Bloomberg View)
Policy: Babe in the woods: Journalism in the age of clickbait (National Review)
For more of today’s news, visit Patriot Headline Report.
By Nate Jackson
Language is critically important when it comes to understanding other people. It’s one of the things that separates man from beast. But perhaps ever since the Tower of Babel, we humans are destined to misunderstand each other. Unfortunately, sometimes, that misunderstanding is due to people deliberately reshaping language for political ends. Time and space won’t permit a comprehensive list, but here are a few prominent examples.
Much of the current debate in Washington revolves around immigration, where there’s no shortage of manipulated and deceitful terminology. The technical and legal term “illegal alien” has been not just discarded but rejected with prejudice by leftist open-borders advocates, who for years now have referred to illegals as “undocumented.” Sometimes for good measure they add “workers,” so we don’t think these folks are taking from the system. News flash: they are.
“Dreamer” is another one. Granted, that’s actually derived from an unpassed bill called the DREAM Act (an acronym for Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors Act), but that title too was a clever spin on the language to make amnesty for certain illegals sound as appealing as possible. Who could possibly oppose “dreamers”? Hence the word play.
In days past, “racism” meant prejudice against another race. Now it’s a catch-all term for conservative policies on taxes, “welfare” (another distorted word), immigration, etc. Leftists don’t argue policy merits, they shout “racism” and spike the football, thinking they’ve won the argument.
The homosexual agenda, too, is rife with redefinitions. “Gay,” of course, used to mean carefree. “Love” once meant selfless acts of compassion for someone else; now that “love wins” is the slogan for same-sex marriage, it means forcing your political agenda upon someone else. “Love” — “tolerance” too — means putting good people out of business for conscientiously objecting to providing artistic services for same-sex weddings.
That agenda has expanded to include transgenderism, so we read and watch emotional stories about boys using feminine pronouns and vice versa with the desired result being our celebration of a “brave” choice. Bruce and Bradley are now Caitlyn and Chelsea. Enabling a young child to decide she’s a “boy” is no longer child abuse, it’s “tolerance.” All that matters is affirming a person’s gender dysphoria, not sticking with facts or science — much less actually helping such people.
“Phobia” is a suffix now attached to numerous words and it serves much the same purpose as “racism.” Conservatives are “homophobic,” “transphobic,” “xenophobic” and so on, because it helps leftists dismiss good-faith policy or moral arguments as irrational fear.
Along a similar cultural vein, media organizations refer to “pro-life” groups as “anti-abortion,” which is true in a sense yet woefully inadequate and deliberately negative. “Life” itself has been shifted from conception to birth. “Choice” is a sick euphemism for ending life. Again, never mind scientific definitions when an agenda is on the line.
One of the more sinister efforts at language manipulation is with guns. Media reports ubiquitously refer to certain guns with the misnomer “assault weapons,” or they speak of “high-capacity” magazines instead of standard capacity. When a deranged individual or a religious fanatic murders numerous people, he is, according to the media, a “gunman,” because that puts the focus on the instrument of death rather than the killer himself. Subtly, that sways people’s emotions against a tool, and it provides — pardon the pun — ammunition for those who would curtail our Second Amendment rights.
Terrorists motived by loyalty to a worldwide entity we in our humble shop call Jihadistan are, to the media, “lone wolves.” And yet fatherless, medicated and unaffiliated killers are somehow motivated by the “gun lobby”?
Far more broadly speaking is calling our “republic” a “democracy.” The latter has become lazy shorthand for getting to vote for stuff, while “republic” is too often associated with communist tyranny that isn’t republican at all, as in The People’s Republic of… For many Americans, accepting this terminology shift is largely just lazy, but make no mistake — Democrats benefit from the widespread good feelings associated with “democracy,” while the converse is true for Republicans. That same marketing technique was employed when the media shifted red and blue states 30 years ago. Ronald Reagan’s map was blue, but Democrats didn’t want the association with communist red. Hence the change.
Walter Williams recently wrote an outstanding explanation of why the Founding Fathers “went to great lengths to ensure that we were a republic and not a democracy.” Moreover, Williams notes, “The word democracy does not appear in the Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution or any other of our founding documents.” In fact, the Founders warned against democracy as its own form of tyranny.
We could go on ad nauseum, but readers can see the point. Words mean things, and all Americans should beware and reject the mainstream media’s redefinitions, which often advance specific points in the Left’s agenda. Unfortunately, most other conservative media outlets don’t bother getting these words right and thus cede ground to leftists. Your Patriot Post team, on the other hand, has endeavored for more than 21 years to fight for the language as part of our fight for both truth and Liberty. We aim for that to continue.
For more of today’s memes, visit the Memesters Union.
For more of today’s top cartoons, visit the Cartoons archive.
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MORE ANALYSIS FROM THE PATRIOT POST
- CA Dems May Confiscate Half of Tax Cut Savings — A lawmaker claims, “Trump’s tax reform plan was nothing more than a middle-class tax increase.” This is flat-out wrong.
- Trump Misses the Mark With Solar Tariffs — In essence, Trump’s decision, unfortunately, continues the government’s proclivity for picking winners and losers.
- Video: An Open Statement to Washington, DC — YouTuber Chad Prather takes our elected representatives to task for their entitled and awful behavior.
BEST OF RIGHT OPINION
- Rich Lowry: The Limits of the Resistance
- James Shott: Repairing the Damage of Regulatory Overreach: So Far, So Good
- Ryan T. Anderson: The Sex-Change Revolution Is Based on Ideology, Not Science
- Dennis Prager: Male Sexual Nature: A Primer for the College-Educated
- Amy Wax: Are We Free to Discuss America’s Real Problems?
For more of today’s columns, visit Right Opinion.
OPINION IN BRIEF
Cal Thomas: “If we don’t like what is happening in Washington — and few do — the blame must be placed squarely where it belongs. It is ‘we the people’ who send these people here. We send people of different and often opposing viewpoints to Washington and expect them to get along. Many quickly turn opportunities to represent us into opportunities to represent themselves. They become careerists, statists and hypocrites, first supporting one cause or policy when it suits them and then with whiplash intensity turning around and supporting its opposite when it is politically expedient. It is why my favorite lecture circuit laugh line is ‘I’m happy to be here tonight from Washington, DC, where the only politicians with convictions are in prison.’ Is that too cynical? Perhaps. There are a few good men and women in Washington, but they are often overtaken by the swamp, which is more like quicksand, dragging everyone down. If re-election and fundraising become primary goals rather than promotion of the general welfare, everything else becomes secondary.”
For the record: “Over in the department of futile and stupid gestures, the Senate on Monday voted 81-18 to end the government shutdown that Democrats had insisted on late last week. The politics apparently didn’t turn out to be the winner the Democrats anticipated, so they bailed out and called retreat a victory.” —The Wall Street Journal
Peer pressure: “I wouldn’t be surprised if [Chuck] Schumer privately thought the shutdown was a dangerous strategy, but was pushed into it by the hard left in his caucus and key interest groups that support the Democratic party.” —Brit Hume
D'oh! “[Dianne] Feinstein warned that a shutdown would literally kill people … and just voted to keep the shutdown going, for the second time.” —Guy Benson
Setting the bar really low: “The one thing I would say that [Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer] did get is the potential for momentum.” —Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz
Backfire: “Last week, I was moved to tears of joy when Democrats stood up and fought for progressive values and for Dreamers. Today, I am moved to tears of disappointment and anger that Democrats blinked.” —America’s Voice executive director Frank Sharry
Belly laugh of the week: “There is nothing so predictable as media spin in favor of Republicans.” —MSNBC’s Joy Reid
Media bias update: “During their morning and evening news shows from Jan. 19 through Jan. 22, the three broadcast networks covered the 2018 Women’s March nearly seven times more than the 2018 March for Life. ABC, CBS and NBC combined devoted 25 minutes, 24 seconds on the Women’s March, but just 3 minutes, 46 seconds on the pro-life rally.” —Newsbusters’ Katie Yoder
Race bait: “The president is a white supremacist. We heard in Charlottesville our president is a terrorist sympathizer, and our president is a clear and present danger to non-white people in America.” —MSNBC contributor Jason Johnson
And last… “The FBI can delete evidence of investigation bias, but try telling the IRS you ‘failed to preserve’ receipts for all your deductions.” —Twitter satirist @hale_razor
Join us in daily prayer for our Patriots in uniform — Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen — standing in harm’s way in defense of Liberty, and for their families. We also humbly ask prayer for your Patriot team, that our mission would seed and encourage the spirit of Liberty in the hearts and minds of our countrymen.
Semper Vigilans Fortis Paratus et Fidelis
Nate Jackson, Managing Editor
Mark Alexander, Publisher