Mid-Day Digest

May 7, 2018

IN TODAY’S EDITION

  • John Kerry goes rogue to undermine Trump on the Iran deal.
  • Mueller’s team gets smacked down by a judge on investigative overreach.
  • Trump addressed the NRA convention, promising to defend the Second Amendment.
  • Destroying America, one miseducated student after another.
  • Plus our Daily Features: Top Headlines, Memes, Cartoons, Columnists and Short Cuts.

THE FOUNDATION

“Republics are created by the virtue, public spirit, and intelligence of the citizens. They fall, when the wise are banished from the public councils, because they dare to be honest, and the profligate are rewarded, because they flatter the people, in order to betray them.” —Joseph Story (1833)

IN BRIEF

John Kerry Goes Nuclear, Secretly Negotiates With Iran

Nate Jackson

After the blockbuster revelations of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu last week — that the Iran nuclear deal was truly built on a foundation of lies — the looming May 12 deadline for President Donald Trump to reconfirm the deal is all the more important. It appears likely that he will withdraw.

It’s against that backdrop that a man with extensive experience negotiating with America’s enemies without the authority to do so is working behind the scenes to save the deal. Former Secretary of State John Kerry has reportedly held numerous secret meetings with officials and leaders from Iran, Germany, France and the European Union to salvage the nuclear agreement, which Kerry spent years negotiating for Barack Obama.

Democrats wanted to hang former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn out to dry for supposedly violating the Logan Act, a 1799 law that prohibits private citizens from conducting unauthorized foreign policy, because Flynn had conversations with Russians during the transition into power for the Trump administration. Of course, they’re silent on Kerry. No one has ever been prosecuted under the Logan Act, but Kerry’s “shadow diplomacy” is serious — he’s actively working to undermine the current administration to save a horrible deal in which he has a personal stake.

It’s arguably treason, and if anyone knows how to get away with treason, it’s John Kerry, who negotiated with the North Vietnamese in 1970, giving aid and comfort to the enemy at a time of open war. He then delivered communist propaganda and slander of American troops in congressional testimony. For nearly 50 years, Kerry has been a disgrace to his country and it’s well past time he faced the consequences.

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Judge Smacks Down Mueller’s ‘Unfettered Power’

Thomas Gallatin

Federal Judge T.S. Ellis blasted Robert Mueller’s special investigation during a Friday hearing in its case against President Donald Trump’s former campaign manager, Paul Manafort. Ellis, a Ronald Reagan appointee, took Mueller team lawyer Michael Dreeben to task for prosecutorial overreach, lecturing, “If I look at the indictment [against Manafort], none of that information has anything to do with links or coordination between the Russian government and individuals associated with the campaign of Donald Trump. So I don’t see what relation this indictment has with anything the special prosecutor is authorized to investigate.”

Manafort was indicted by the Mueller investigation on 18 counts of tax- and bank-fraud-related changes, none of which are directly tied to any Trump/Russia collusion conspiracy. Ellis made it clear that he saw through the special prosecution’s ruse, asserting that the charges raised against Manafort were obviously intended as a means “to exert leverage on a defendant so that the defendant will turn and provide information on what is really the focus of the special prosecutor.”

Dreeben insisted that the charges against Manafort were within Team Mueller’s “investigatory scope.” Ellis merely scoffed, however, firing back, “My question to you was, how does bank fraud and these other things that go back to 2005, 2007 — how does that have anything to do with links and/or coordination between the Russian government and individuals associated with the campaign of Trump?” In reply, Dreeben once again referenced the scope of investigation granted by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein: “We are not limited in our prosecution authority to crimes that would fit within the precise description that was issued in this public order.” Ellis retorted, “I have that right here, and I’m glad you raised it because 75% of it is blocked out, redacted. Why don’t I have a full copy of it?”

Dreeben said that the judge only needed to see the scope of Rosenstein’s memo that was pertinent to Manafort. But Ellis rejected that answer and accused the special prosecution of seeking “unfettered power” in a quest to target Trump: “You don’t really care about Mr. Manafort’s bank fraud. You really care about what information Mr. Manafort can give you that would reflect on Mr. Trump or lead to his prosecution or impeachment or whatever. That’s what you’re really interested in.” Bingo. Ellis then ordered Dreeben to return in two weeks with an unredacted Rosenstein memo or provide a better explanation of why not.

If the judge throws out the charges against Manafort, it would throw a major wrench into Mueller’s efforts to build a collusion case against Trump. It already shines the spotlight on the Justice Department’s concealment practices that have been justified as necessary in order to protect national security and ongoing investigations. However, all the recent unredacted documents have shown an agency with leadership keen on protecting themselves from public scrutiny rather than any actual national security issues. It will be interesting to see if Mueller’s team meets the demands of Judge Ellis, who very effectively called out this charade for what it is.

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Top Headlines

  • Attempted border entries in April more than three times higher than the same month in 2017 (The Washington Free Beacon)
  • Trump administration will end protections for 50,000 Hondurans living in U.S. since 1999 (The Washington Post)
  • North Korea warns the United States not to misread peace overtures as a sign of weakness (USA Today)
  • Study: Those most concerned about climate change least likely to take individual action (Hot Air)
  • Four takeaways from Trump’s NRA speech (The Daily Signal)
  • Illinois counties declare “sanctuary” status for gun owners, put Democrats on notice (The Washington Times)
  • Bank of America will fund assault-type rifle maker (Fox Business)
  • National Shooting Sports Foundation just expelled Dick’s Sporting Goods over gun control lobbying (The Federalist)
  • George Washington U. student petition: remove “offensive” Colonial mascot (The College Fix)
  • CDC: 70% of new HIV infections in homosexual men because of high risk behavior (CNS News)
  • Policy: The 3.9% unemployment rate doesn’t mean a tight labor market (Investor’s Business Daily)
  • Policy: At its core, #MeToo represents a rejection of the 1960’s vision of erotic liberation (City Journal)

For more of today’s news, visit Patriot Headline Report.

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FEATURED ANALYSIS

NRA Cheers Trump’s 2A Promises

Robin Smith

In 2017, President Donald Trump became the first sitting president to address the National Rifle Association’s Annual Meetings & Exhibits. In Dallas on Friday, Trump made it two years in a row, even after the Parkland school shooting that yielded a wave of calls for gun control efforts ranging from banning certain types of guns and magazines to the repeal of the Second Amendment.

Walking on stage to Lee Greenwood’s “God Bless the USA,” which has become the anthem of Trump rallies, the president was greeted by a wall of applause and rowdy calls of support, characteristic of a college football game or NASCAR race. The Leadership Forum held in Dallas featured its largest crowd to date.

Trump’s remarks were hardly distinguishable from his Washington Township event held just a week earlier in Michigan. So vividly “Trump,” the president played to his crowd with off-the-cuff rhetoric and a few punchlines. Trump spoke effectively about the hypocrisy of demanding we outlaw guns after mass shootings versus the silence after the use of trucks, vans and knives in recent public terror events. Classic Trump.

Furthermore, make no mistake: Trump was standing before some of the most intense voters out there.

An analysis in The New York Times back in October 2017 looked at the 2016 November election results through the lens of gun ownership. Following the Las Vegas mass shooting, the Times noted, “No other demographic characteristic created such a consistent geographic split.” The paper created a red-blue electoral map according to gun ownership voters. In short, if only voters in homes with guns had voted in the last presidential election, Donald Trump would’ve won every state except Vermont. This backs up both Pew Research and Gallup that have demonstrated that gun owners are both more likely to contact an elected official about policy and to vote for someone who shares their position on guns.

So what? Well, you know all those attacks leveled at the NRA after the Parkland shooting, where an armed school resource officer waited outside while 17 victims were murdered by a known-to-be-troubled 19-year-old? The critical placards and harsh talking points were aimed at the NRA, but those who actually own guns and value gun rights were always the intended target. As Democrats would frame it, you either love kids and hate guns or love guns and hate kids. Don’t mistake the real target of Democrats’ hatred — gun owners, not their organization.

The dripping disdain of the celebrity media mobilized to do the Democrats’ bidding was ever present in the coverage of the NRA’s annual convention. The perfect example was in the completely manufactured lie that the NRA banned guns at its own meeting for the purpose of the safety of Trump and Vice President Mike Pence. Democrats and gun-control advocates pounced on the constructed narrative that students should be equally protected by gun bans in schools with only law enforcement armed for a response.

We suppose they forgot that what they claim to want — a gun-free zone with guns only in the hands of the police — was exactly the situation in Parkland. Other than the actual shooter, the armed school resource officer failed to respond to a man known to most everyone at the school as volatile and even too dangerous to have a backpack on campus.

As Americans have grown to know, fake news outlets lie. They did not report that the layers of systems already in place failed to prevent the Florida school shooting. That includes the politically correct approach to screening troubled individuals, all to keep statistics in a range to get federal funding. Leftmedia outlets completely fabricate a storyline to continue their never-ending badgering of law-abiding gun owners.

While President Trump’s remarks served up red meat to a crowd fed up with the direction America’s been taken by Democrats, the NRA membership is not only a group devoted to voting. Members put their cash on the barrelhead through personal contributions.

The first full month following the Parkland shooting featured a wave of marches, walkouts and regular railings against responsible and lawful gun ownership. And yet the NRA marked a 15-year fundraising high of $2.4 million from March 1 through March 31. All but $500,000 of this total came from donations of $200 or less, reflecting a wave of support to defend the right to bear arms in the face of the steady drumbeat of mass media opposition.

Among the wide-ranging remarks made by the president — he covered everything from the humming economy to the appointment of conservative judges to the Russia collusion investigation — came a line that captured Trump’s endearing trait. As he addressed the drawn-out inquiry by Special Counsel Robert Mueller, Trump declared, “We’re all fighting battles. But I love fighting these battles. It’s really a disgrace what’s happening to our country.”

The NRA crowd is hated by coastal elites for knowing that their God-given rights to worship and speak freely, as well as to own property and the rest, are protected only by the right to bear arms. They love this fight, too. And they love a president who won’t back down when there’s a fight for the average American. “Americans will never surrender,” Trump promised. “We will never give up our freedom. Americans were born free, we live free, and we will die free.”

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TODAY’S MEME

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For more of today’s memes, visit the Memesters Union.

TODAY’S CARTOON

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For more of today’s top cartoons, visit the Cartoons archive.

MORE ANALYSIS FROM THE PATRIOT POST

BEST OF RIGHT OPINION

For more of today’s columns, visit Right Opinion.

OPINION IN BRIEF

Paul Kengor: “What is … cultural Marxism, and how did it emerge? It began not on May 5, 1818, with [Karl] Marx’s birth but over 100 years later with the birth of what came to be known as the Frankfurt School. … Cultural Marxists understand that the revolution requires a cultural war over an economic war. Whereas the West — certainly America — is not vulnerable to a revolt of the downtrodden trade-union masses, it is eminently vulnerable when it comes to, say, sex or pornography. While a revolution for wealth redistribution would be unappealing to most citizens of the West, a sexual revolution would be irresistible. … The threat of Hitler’s Germany drove the Frankfurt School out of Europe and into the welcoming arms of America’s left-wing academics. Most to all of the leading practitioners of the Frankfurt School were Jews who needed a safe haven from Hitler’s madness. So they and their institute came to New York City, specifically to the campus of Columbia University, already a hotbed of communist thought. Pleading the case for them at Columbia was John Dewey, founding father of American public education and communist sympathizer. … It was no coincidence that Columbia housed the nation’s top teachers’ college — a creation of John Dewey. From there, the cultural Marxists spread their ideas to campuses nationwide. Their extremist notions would sweep up the ‘60s New Left, to which the likes of Herbert Marcuse became an ideological guru to the radicals who today are tenured at our universities. … These modern cultural revolutionaries are succeeding magnificently in redefining everything from marriage and family to sexuality and gender. And most stunning of all, it’s the parents — many of them conservative Christians — who are paying for the grand indoctrination with their lifesavings. And 200 years henceforth, Karl Marx would be chuckling heartily at that irony.”

SHORT CUTS

The Gipper: “We are for aiding our allies by sharing our material blessings with nations which share our fundamental beliefs, but we are against doling out money government to government, creating bureaucracy, if not socialism, all over the world.”

Braying Jackass: “Happy 200th Birthday Karl Marx! You believed that everyone should have a seat at the table & that the greed of the rich would eventually bring us all down. You believed that everyone deserves a slice of the pie. You knew that the super wealthy were out to grab whatever they could.” —capitalist beneficiary Michael Moore

Braying Jenny: “The most qualified person running was a woman, and look what we did instead. I mean, that says something about where we are. If we as women are still suspicious of one another; if we still have this crazy, crazy bar for each other that we don’t have for men; if we’re not comfortable with the notion that a woman could be our president … then we have to have those conversations with ourselves as women.” —Michelle Obama lamenting that women didn’t line up to vote for the woman

Thanks, Obama? “I think we have to look at it over a longer horizon than [Trump’s time in office]. If you think about what the economy was like when President Obama took office, we were losing 750,000 jobs a month. Under his watch the unemployment rate dropped in half and it’s encouraging to see that we’re continuing to make progress.” —Valerie Jarrett belittling the Trump economy

Race bait: “[Trump is] certainly racist-adjacent. If you have the evidence that shows you, that leads you to nothing else but this president being racist, then I feel it’s my obligation as a journalist to say it.” —CNN’s Don Lemon

Non Compos Mentis: “The other cable networks have picked sides. I know people like to say that CNN has picked sides. We picked the side of truth. I think in this era, the Trump era, the truth can seem partisan when it’s not.” —Don Lemon

Late-night humor: “A member of the band Journey said 'Don’t Stop Believing’ was inspired by the time he borrowed money from his dad to pay his dog’s vet bill. Apparently, the dog was hit by a midnight train goin’ anywhere.” —Jimmy Fallon

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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