Mid-Day Digest

May 12, 2020

THE FOUNDATION

“A popular Government, without popular information, or the means of acquiring it, is but a Prologue to a Farce or a Tragedy; or, perhaps both. Knowledge will forever govern ignorance: And a people who mean to be their own Governors, must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives.” —James Madison (1822)

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IN TODAY’S DIGEST

FEATURED ANALYSIS

Ex-DOJ Officials Attack Barr as DNI Unmasks Flynn Unmaskers

Thomas Gallatin

A mere three days after Barack Obama’s conveniently leaked private phone call — in which he blasted Attorney General William Barr’s decision to drop the case against Gen. Michael Flynn as a risk to the “Rule of Law” — comes a letter signed by nearly 2,000 former Justice Department officials sent to Congress calling for Barr’s resignation and censure.

The letter, echoing Obama’s erroneous claim that no one charged with perjury has ever gotten off scot-free, decried Barr’s “unprecedented” decision. They assert, “If any of us, or anyone reading this statement who is not a friend of the President, were to lie to federal investigators in the course of a properly predicated counterintelligence investigation, and admit we did so under oath, we would be prosecuted for it.”

These ex-DOJ officials assert as if it were an unmitigated fact that the counterintelligence investigation run by Obama’s DOJ was “properly predicated.” Yet recently released DOJ documents show that the investigation was anything but “properly predicated,” which is the central issue at the heart of Barr’s decision. No wonder Obama and this army of 2,000 ex-DOJ officials are attempting to obfuscate and attack Barr.

Who are these 2,000 former DOJ officials, and how were they so quickly organized into sending this letter? It’s clear this is an orchestrated action ultimately aimed at defending Obama. The best defense is a good offense. Obama and his lackeys are targeting Barr in an attempt to create the false narrative that he is acting corruptly in support of President Donald Trump, and therefore any of his actions taken in uncovering the deep-state plot to undermine Trump’s presidency should be rejected as illegitimate. The real objective is to lay the groundwork for defending against any possible DOJ criminal indictments against Obama era officials by U.S. Attorney John Durham.

It’s important to note that Durham’s criminal probe into the origins of the collusion hoax has only grown in scope and now is said to be going “full throttle,” as a third U.S. attorney has recently been added to the case.

Meanwhile, acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell is unmasking the unmaskers of Flynn. He recently sent to the DOJ a declassified list of the Obama administration officials who were responsible for the unmasking — a significant development that may help the DOJ get to the bottom of who leaked about Flynn to the media. As Flynn attorney Sidney Powell notes, “The leak of the Kislyak transcript is a felony that should be prosecuted to the max, including a conspiracy charge for all those who decided to make it happen as part of the setup and framing of General Flynn.”

Furthermore, Barr noted last week that from what he’s seen of the FBI’s Crossfire Hurricane investigation, it “did not have a basis for a counterintelligence investigation against Flynn at that stage, based on a perfectly legitimate and appropriate call he made as a member of the transition.” So, in short, the battle lines are reforming as the links connecting those responsible for orchestrating the Russia-collusion hoax appear to lead all the way to the top.

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About That Horrendous Premeditated Hate Crime

Mark Alexander

As promised, a follow-up on two contrasting murder cases — one the cold-blooded murder of two elderly people visiting their son’s grave in a Delaware veterans cemetery, and the other the shooting death of a black man in Georgia.

As I noted yesterday, despite the fact that the Delaware State Police believe a black assailant targeted and murdered an elderly white couple, the Delaware attack was not even a blip on the mass-media radar.

On the other hand, the MSM is saturating media outlets with the Georgia case because it checks all the boxes for an election-year race-bait feeding frenzy for the Democrat Party and its Leftmedia publicists. Demos are desperately trying to keep their black constituents in line — the voting line.

As of yesterday the identity and race of the Delaware victims had not been released. Thus, I established contact with residents from Elkton, Maryland, home of the Delaware cemetery victims, to confirm the elderly couple was white — and indeed they were. While their identities have now been released, there is no mention of their race or any call for their murder to be investigated as a hate crime.

While the respective race of the individuals involved in both of these cases should be immaterial, the Georgia case fits a disgraceful political narrative that elevates it as clickbait across all Leftmedia platforms. But that also exposes a gross double standard in how such cases are treated by the media and Democrat politicians, who are predisposed to brazenly use the blood of victims when it advances their political agenda.

Regarding that double standard, Manhattan Institute researcher Heather Mac Donald has thoroughly documented the racial disparity between interracial crimes. According to the latest Bureau of Justice Statistics survey of criminal victimization (2018), McDonald notes: “There were 593,598 interracial violent victimizations … between blacks and whites last year, including white-on-black and black-on-white attacks. Blacks committed 537,204 of those interracial felonies, or 90 percent, and whites committed 56,394 of them, or less than 10 percent.”

Mac Donald adds, “That ratio is becoming more skewed, despite the Democrat claim of Trump-inspired white violence. In 2012-13, blacks committed 85 percent of all interracial victimizations between blacks and whites; whites committed 15 percent. From 2015 to 2018, the total number of white victims and the incidence of white victimization have grown as well.”

Mac Donald concludes: “Blacks are also overrepresented among perpetrators of hate crimes — by 50 percent — according to the most recent Justice Department data from 2017; whites are underrepresented by 24 percent. This is particularly true for anti-gay and anti-Semitic hate crimes.”

Note that black people represent 15% of the population but perpetrate 90% of violent interracial crimes.

Again, Democrats and their Leftmedia outlets have saturated the nation with hyperbolic headlines about the Georgia shooting, which may result in one or more homicide convictions. But where is the justice for the Delaware murder victims — and thousands like them? If the Department of Justice is going to investigate any “hate crimes,” it should investigate ALL hate crimes.

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China Corrupted WHO

Nate Jackson

There are new revelations from Germany’s Federal Intelligence Service (BND is the German acronym) about China’s collusion with the World Health Organization (WHO) to craft a cover-up. Specifically, Chinese officials demanded that WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus help deflect concerns about the risks of COVID-19 and delay declaring a pandemic. According to Der Spiegel, “The BND’s verdict is harsh: At least four, if not six, weeks have been lost in Beijing’s information policy in the fight against the virus.” Had Xi and Tedros informed the world just three weeks earlier than their December 31 notification, that would have reduced the viral spread by 95%.

American media outlets were still too busy with the Democrats’ impeachment charade to notice, and now they’re too busy peddling fake news about coronavirus to worry about China’s role in its spread.

Recall that on January 14, Tedros issued a statement saying, “Preliminary investigations conducted by Chinese authorities have found no clear evidence of human-to-human transmission of the novel coronavirus.” That disinformation came after the Chinese government already knew human-to-human transmission was happening.

WHO has also towed Beijing’s line on Taiwan, which the ChiComs stubbornly regard as Chinese territory, not an independent nation. Taiwan will be excluded from the WHO’s upcoming summit because, according to Beijing, issuing the invitation would “severely violate the one-China principle.” And the WHO’s January 14 denial of human-to-human transmission? Taiwan had warned the WHO of that contagious factor back in December.

(Also, by the way, Twitter won’t intervene with the WHO’s false assertion, despite censoring other “misinformation” regarding COVID-19.)

Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR), who has now taken on the primary role of exposing Xi Jinping’s agenda to conceal the outbreak, explained the real implications: “There’s no question that Xi Jinping and senior officials in the Chinese Communist Party were pressuring the WHO all the way back to December to undersell the risk of this virus. They knew in China early on, probably as early as the early days of December, that this virus was both highly contagious in humans and very deadly for certain people. Yet they wanted to save face. In addition to saving face, they wanted — once they realized this virus was going to cripple their own economy — that it did not remain limited to China.”

In other words, Cotton later added, Beijing’s leaders wanted “to ensure the Chinese economy wasn’t the only one to suffer.”

According to White House trade policy adviser Peter Navarro, “We know that patient zero in China was about mid-November … in Wuhan. We know that ground zero [was] the P4 weapons lab, where the virus likely came from. For the next two months, we know that China hid the virus from the world behind the shield of the World Health Organization.” Meanwhile, the worldwide death toll is approaching 300,000.

The evidence about Xi’s demands of Tedros are known to U.S. intelligence agencies but the administration is withholding release of that information because of pending trade negotiations between President Donald Trump and Xi. Such individually distasteful moves are inevitably a part of chess.

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It’s Time to Put the Maritime Squeeze on China

Harold Hutchison

You might wonder why we criticized the Navy for another in a series of mistakes with its latest frigate purchase. Why bother with that when the abuses of the deep state against Patriots have many concerned?

Well, reminding certain civil servants about basic constitutional principles, while it is a necessity, is not the only vital task at hand. The U.S. needs to hold China accountable for the depraved indifference to human life displayed in its cover-up. The good news is that we may have a golden chance for a lot of help.

According to a report from Reuters, the Chinese Communist Party is worried about a backlash on par with the one following Tiananmen Square. While that certainly explains the ChiComs’ ramped-up propaganda campaign, the facts will show that Beijing’s despots face this backlash because they earned it.

Imagine that this had been, say, an American pharmaceutical company that was implicated in covering up an outbreak to the point that it became a pandemic that sickened millions, killed a quarter-million people, all while wrecking the economy and causing deaths of despair. That company would have a hard time securing the naming rights to a dogfighting pit if it even survived the flurry of lawsuits.

Now, China is not a pharmaceutical company, so naturally, holding it accountable is going to look very different. One of the ways is to put a maritime squeeze on China. Thankfully, this is already underway, particularly with the United States walking away from the INF Treaty, which Russia was violating anyway.

Granted, the deployment of the AGM-158C Long-Range Anti-Ship Missile (LRASM) is a start, especially from the B-1B Lancer (which can pack two dozen of these missiles). But America just doesn’t have that many B-1s and stopped production way too soon. Thankfully, the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet also can carry this weapon, which packs a 1,000-pound high-explosive warhead. This makes our aircraft carriers much more menacing, but that doesn’t limit the problems China faces. Super Hornets can also fly from land bases, as well.

The other big bonus is that adding land-based missiles, especially on islands like Palawan and Singapore or near harbors like Haiphong, can make life much harder for the People’s Liberation Army Navy, especially since it still relies on oil imports, and supertankers remain the best option to transport oil to China from places like Iran and Venezuela. Without oil, most of the People’s Liberation Army Navy will have a hard time being battle-ready.

Given that so many countries have suffered from the pandemic that grew so bad because of China’s cover-up, the chance to score some payback will be something countries will be willing to take. Plus, there’s nothing wrong with a few well-timed weapon sales to Taiwan.

The fact is, China fears a backlash over the pandemic. In this case, those fears should be made very real. After all, the Butchers of Beijing need to learn that actions have consequences.

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Dem Rep. Aims to Usher in 1984 Dystopia

Thomas Gallatin

In something that sounds like it could only come out of an apocalyptic dystopian novel, Democrat Rep. Bobby Rush (IL) recently introduced the COVID-19 Testing, Reaching, And Contacting Everyone, or TRACE, Act. The bill’s number? HR 6666 — no joke. Rush’s bill would provide $100 billion in funding to the Health and Human Services Department for “diagnostic testing for COVID–19, to trace and monitor the contacts of infected individuals, and to support the quarantine of such contacts.” In short, the proposed legislation would both test and track infected individuals and all their contacts. The new buzz phrase is “contact tracing.”

It’s one thing to implement this in smaller, localized ways, but talk of a national system is 1984 come to life. It’s not just fringe conspiracy nuts extrapolating this, either — not when there’s a growing number of leftist politicians like New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo who see this as a legitimate opportunity to “reimagine” the state.

“The intention is clear, and that’s to force every single person in the United States into a system that allows the government to monitor the physical contacts between every group and individual,” observes the Washington Examiner’s Eddie Scarry. “Should anyone be determined to have been infected or come into contact with an infected person, the bill provides for ‘services’ related to testing and quarantine at their residences. How robust would these ‘services’ be? Ordering food for you, or keeping you inside your home? At the very least, the government will be closely tracking whom you’ve come into contact with.”

Clearly, this is an attempted blatant power grab by leftist politicians who under the guise of combating a virus are literally advocating that Americans’ fundamental freedoms be dismissed. Scarry cogently adds, “All of the calls for testing and tracing are less and less about moving past the pandemic and almost now exclusively about the concentration of power and the fulfillment of whatever weird ideas liberals have for ‘social equality.’”

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Due Process Can’t Restore Morality on Campus

Nate Jackson

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos recently undid much damage done by Joe Biden and the Obama administration by restoring basic due process to cases of alleged sexual assault on college campuses. One thing she did not — and could not — do, however, is restore basic morality on those campuses.

As this author has previously written, morality based on consent isn’t morality at all. In other words, just because two unmarried individuals engage in consensual sex doesn’t make that sex moral. And just because the 1960s ushered in the age of “free love” and sex “without consequences” doesn’t mean there aren’t very real consequences from this debauchery.

For one thing, many young men seem to have concluded that young women owe them sexual pleasure, and if that is denied, they’ll push to take it. Throw in copious amounts of alcohol, and the young woman is at best impaired and at worst utterly incapable of granting true consent. Either way, she’ll likely come to regret it in the morning. That is unfortunate enough, but in too many cases that regret becomes the entire basis for punishing that young man.

Toxic masculinity, meet militant feminism.

Yet Title IX offices on college campuses are awash in the vile trinkets of “adult” bookstores. Teresa Manning, director of the Title IX Project at the National Association of Scholars, writes, “These offices … happily distribute tools to encourage the ‘hook-up culture’ of numerous, transient sexual encounters: ‘Condom corners’ featuring the free, colored and flavored (‘If it’s flavored, it’s meant to be tasted!’); finger condoms; dental dams; and Planned Parenthood brochures advertising abortifacients and all manner of sexual practices.”

Manning then asks about the elephant (not) in the room: “Do Title IX offices ever encourage healthy relationships as a way of avoiding misunderstandings that lead to Title IX complaints?”

She also hinted at another “feature” of campus culture: abortion. Whether it’s a pill or a procedure, there are at least 800,000 abortions in the U.S. every year. How many of these babies were conceived at your local university during a “consequence free” hookup?

Again, what Secretary DeVos accomplished for Rule of Law is worthy of applause. But we can’t help but feel like it’s somewhat of a hollow victory given the deeper problems plaguing our society.

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NEWS EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

Jordan Candler

Above the Fold

  • Dr. Anthony Fauci will testify before the Senate Health Committee today. Fauci revealed to The New York Times: “The major message that I wish to convey … is the danger of trying to open the country prematurely. … This will not only result in needless suffering and death, but would actually set us back on our quest to return to normal.” Of course economic restoration will result in some undesirable effects, as our own Mark Alexander has explained. But with all due respect, Fauci’s position is safe, easy, and ultimately shortsighted. Which is exactly the position that ivory tower bureaucrats love to take.

  • Yesterday, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer bloviated: “Until now, we’ve mostly heard from the members of the coronavirus task force through the distorted lens of the White House press conference where the president often prevents them from answering fully, interrupts their response, or even contradicts their fact-based evidence. This will be one of the first opportunities for Dr. Fauci to tell the American people the unvarnished truth without the president lurking over his shoulder. Dr. Fauci, let it rip.” In other words, Schumer wants Fauci to double down on undermining the president.

Government & Politics

  • Trump orders federal retirement money invested in Chinese equities to be pulled (Fox Business)

  • Secrecy of Trump’s taxes, financial records on the line in Supreme Court arguments (NBC News)

  • U.S. to accuse China of trying to hack vaccine data, as virus redirects cyberattacks (The New York Times)

Culture & Heartland

  • Convicted child sex abusers among 4,500 inmates freed from Illinois prisons (American Greatness)

  • Illinois churches sue after governor says religious services may not resume for up to a year (The Daily Wire)

  • Judge scolds, bars attorneys for high-school girls from describing trans athletes as “male” (The Daily Wire)

  • Justices to decide if religious schools can choose who teaches the faith (The Daily Signal)

Other Notables

  • Trump, RNC narrowly outraise Biden, Dems in April (Politico)

  • Mexico’s president calls for investigation into Barack Obama’s “Fast and Furious” (Bongino.com)

  • Gov. Andrew Cuomo announces parts of New York state could reopen Friday (The Hill)

  • MLB owners approve plan to start season in July without spectators (National Review)

Closing Arguments

  • Policy: Reconsidering decades of Western outreach to China (National Review)

  • Policy: No federal regulations can fix campuses saturated in terrible sex (The Federalist)

  • Satire: California allows churches to reopen as long as members drink blood of slain goat, renounce Christ (The Babylon Bee)

For more of today’s editors’ choice headlines, visit In Our Sights.

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VIDEOS

Video: Should Flynn Return to Trump White House? — Bill Whittle and Scott Ott grapple with the question.

Video: Lies About Israel Lead to Lies About Everything — “If you know the truth about Israel, you’re likely to think straight about most things,” an Ecuadorian student explains.

BEST OF RIGHT OPINION

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

SHORT CUTS

Insight: “Reaching consensus in a group is often confused with finding the right answer.” —Norman Mailer (1923-2007)

Upright: “I am delighted to hear [about] President Obama’s newfound interest and respect for the rule of law. I just wish he would apply it equally to Republicans and Democrats.” —Trey Gowdy

For the record: “It’s time we asked: What did Obama and Biden know, and when did they know it?” —Sen. Chuck Grassley

Demo-gogues: “I see everything as an opportunity. The bigger the challenge, the bigger the opportunity.” —House Speaker Nancy “Never Let a Crisis Go to Waste” Pelosi

Non compos mentis: “President Trump today came out to talk about how the United States is ready to reopen, and he — I mean, they can’t even keep the pandemic out of the White House. Literally. … It’s almost as if sometimes the president doesn’t understand that we can see and hear what’s going on.” —CNN’s Jake Tapper

The BIG Lie, Part I: “Anywhere between 1 and 2,000 Americans are dying every day from the coronavirus and yet, rather than confront that reality, Trump is doing the only thing he knows, and that’s lying his way through it. He’s trying to Jedi mind trick Americans into thinking coronavirus will simply go away.” —Seth Meyers

The BIG Lie, Part II: “The Department of Justice is basically just an arm of the Trump campaign now.” —Seth Meyers

Non sequitur: “What a twist. This [Texas] salon owner broke the law by keeping her business open. And because of public outcry, she’s now a hero being celebrated by Sen. Ted Cruz. Hey, you know it’s funny how in America, if you break the law and you look a certain way, well then, you’re a criminal. But if you break the law and you look a different way, well then, the law needs to be changed because you’re just a freedom-loving American exercising your right.” —Trevor Noah

And last… “The Democrats seem to have forgotten FDR’s admonition, ‘The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.’ Their new motto appears to be, ‘The only thing we have to fear is an economic rebound that would assure Trump’s reelection.’” —Dinesh D'Souza

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