“If we can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people, under the pretence of taking care of them, they must become happy.” —Thomas Jefferson (1802)
IN TODAY’S DIGEST
- Democrats Panic Over Economic Recovery
- Trump Trolls Twitter
- Minneapolis Cops: Due Process for Everyone?
- COVID-19 Hitting Blue States Harder Than Red States
- Daily Features: News Executive Summary, Videos, Best of Right Opinion, Short Cuts, Memes, and Cartoons.
Two years ago, we explained why a good economy is bad for Democrats. Long before any notion of shutting down the economy to mitigate a contagion, Democrats were pushing for recession because it would help their political prospects. They didn’t get the recession they wanted in 2018, though they did ride their Russia-collusion hoax to take back the House. The recession has come in 2020, however, so a former economic adviser to Barack Obama recently laid out the new danger for Democrats: “We are about to see the best economic data we’ve seen in the history of this country.”
Jason Furman said that back in early April, but Politico just reported it yesterday. Furman, now a Harvard professor, was warning fellow Democrats about the prospects for a fast and substantial economic recovery from the Great Coronavirus Shutdown.
According to Politico, “Furman’s case begins with the premise that the 2020 pandemic-triggered economic collapse is categorically different than the Great Depression or the Great Recession, which both had slow, grinding recoveries.” We’d like to note a great irony that, naturally, Politico ignored: Democrat policies greatly exacerbated those downturns and slowed the recoveries. FDR’s New Deal worsened the depression, while Obama’s heavy-handed regulatory and tax regime had our economy stuck in low gear for eight years.
On the other hand, President Donald Trump brought lower taxes and less regulation, putting our economy on exceptionally strong footing and making the U.S. more resilient in the face of calamity. Where would we be right now if COVID hit during the Obama economy?
The “partial rebound,” Furman warned, “can be very very fast, because people go back to their original job, they get called back from furlough, you put the lights back on in your business.” He added, “Given how many people were furloughed and how many businesses were closed you can get a big jump out of that. It will look like a V.”
Frankly, we’re not quite “V” optimistic because so many small businesses are going out of business and even big companies are reeling and will be slow to recover. Still, we do see evidence pointing toward a substantial rebound ahead and we think the sheer numbers of recovery will be stunning and encouraging. “Q3 may be the single best GDP quarter since regular data,” says Larry Kudlow, head of the White House National Economic Council. And Furman predicts, “You could easily have one to two million jobs created a month in those four reports before November,” as well as perhaps “double-digit positive economic growth” just ahead of the election. “These will be the best jobs and growth numbers ever.”
Furman’s prognostication certainly serves to, er, pull off the Democrats’ mask. They’re moving the goal posts on continued lockdowns and screaming that Republican governors will have “blood on their hands” for reopening because their entire election pitch depends on the U.S. plummeting into a depression. A “V” recovery would spell disaster for them, while it would obviously be fantastic for America. And doesn’t that about sum up the real issue here? What’s good for America is bad for Democrats, and vice versa.
For better or worse, President Donald Trump is famous for his trolling of political opponents via Twitter. Furthermore, Trump is notorious for floating dubious conspiracy theories, which unsurprisingly evokes irate responses, most often from members of the media. Ironically, the same people who routinely castigate him for promoting dangerous and unsubstantiated conspiracies refuse to admit that their own incessant promotion of “Russian collusion” was the promotion of a dangerous and unsubstantiated conspiracy.
In any case, what is seemingly continually missed is the fact that Trump loves using Twitter to bait his favorite foil, the Leftmedia, into spitting contests. In other words, Trump intentionally uses social media to pick fights with his opponents in an effort to get them to overreact, which he can then use as evidence exposing their deep political bias. It’s not that Trump doesn’t share genuine opinions regarding the topics he may Tweet about; rather he has an uncanny ability to turn any criticism, whether legitimate or not, against his critics, which serves as an opportunity to highlight his desired issue.
Over the past couple of days, Trump has once again demonstrated this uncanny ability. It started with Trump going after one of his biggest media critics, MSNBC host Joe Scarborough, by floating a completely unfounded conspiracy theory that quickly evolved into Trump attacking Twitter for “fact-checking” his unrelated assertions regarding the dangers of mail-in voting. The Leftmedia blasted Twitter for not removing Trump’s unfounded conspiracy smear against Scarborough, which seemed to motivate the social-media giant into “fact-checking” Trump’s claims regarding mail-in voting as “false.”
This was the perfect opening Trump wanted and he pounced: “Twitter is now interfering in the 2020 Presidential Election. They are saying my statement on Mail-In Ballots, which will lead to massive corruption and fraud, is incorrect, based on fact-checking by Fake News CNN and the Amazon Washington Post…” Trump hit two birds with one stone. First, his concern over voter fraud is a legitimate and long-running issue for conservatives. Second, he further exposed the leftist bias of Twitter with its incestuous relationship with Leftmedia “fact-checkers.”
So, instead of the conversation being over Trump’s promotion of a ridiculous conspiracy theory, Trump has effectively spun the focus onto Twitter’s blatant attempt to dictate leftist opinion as “facts” via its use of Leftmedia “fact-checkers” — the same “fact-checkers” who so intentionally botched the biggest conspiracy in American political history — while also shining a spotlight on the Democrats’ push for mail-in balloting, which would open up the 2020 election to massive fraud.
Like it or not, Trump trolls because it’s effective in getting attention on the issues he thinks deserve highlighting.
“Now is not the time to rush to judgment and immediately condemn our officers.”
So said the Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis in the wake of a disturbing video taken Monday evening that showed one of those officers pressing his knee on the neck of a prone and subdued crime suspect, 46-year-old George Floyd, while Floyd complains, “I can’t breathe.”
Floyd soon became unresponsive, but the officer continued to kneel on his neck as a crowd of onlookers pleaded for him to let the man breathe. Paramedics took Floyd away, but he was later pronounced dead at a local hospital.
The officers had responded to a call that evening about a fraudulent transaction at a local deli. According to a police statement, the officers were advised that the suspect “was sitting on top of a blue car and appeared to be under the influence.” Upon arriving and locating the suspect, the statement added, “[Floyd] physically resisted officers.”
Reaction came quickly on Tuesday from Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo, who took the extraordinary step of firing all four officers who were at the scene.
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey also weighed in with a straw man: “Being black in America should not be a death sentence,” he said. “For five minutes, we watched a white officer press his knee into a black man’s neck. Five minutes. When you hear someone calling for help, you’re supposed to help.” Reacting via Twitter to news that the four officers had been summarily fired, Frey said, “This is the right call.”
But is it? Perhaps the video evidence of the officers’ actions provided overwhelming evidence of their collective guilt, but cops suspected of wrongdoing are typically suspended or placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of an actual investigation. We call this due process, and its history dates back to the Magna Carta. More recently, due process was spelled out in the Fifth Amendment of our Constitution, and it’s been one of the hallmarks of our American system of criminal justice ever since.
The video of George Floyd is indeed difficult to watch, and it reminds us of the 2014 arrest of Eric Garner, a black man who died in police custody in Staten Island after resisting arrest and being placed in a chokehold by an NYPD officer. (According to Garner’s autopsy, the chokehold led to a fatal asthma attack.)
A grand jury refused to indict the officer in question in the Garner case, a decision that led to widespread public protests. Garner’s family eventually received a $5.9 million settlement from New York City, however, and the officer in question was fired in 2019 after an NYPD disciplinary hearing. One might reasonably conclude, then, that justice was ultimately served on behalf of Eric Garner and his family.
That brings us back to Minneapolis, which last night saw plenty of civil unrest as protesters clashed with police and family members demanded that the officers be charged with murder.
Perhaps a murder charge will be forthcoming, and perhaps not. But regardless, we’d all be well served to remember that cops, too, are American citizens deserving of due process.
An interesting observation has become apparent amidst the raging debate over reopening versus remaining shut down. That observation: Democrat-controlled states and counties have experienced on average nearly three times more COVID-19 deaths than have Republican dominated regions.
As Reuters reports, “U.S. counties that voted for Democrat Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election reported 39 coronavirus deaths per 100,000 residents, according to an analysis of demographic and public health data,” whereas “in counties that voted for Republican Donald Trump, 13 of every 100,000 people had died from the virus.”
While much of this disparity can be explained by the fact that Democrats run most of the nation’s largest and most densely populated cities — the perfect environment for spreading a virus — this reality only buttresses the argument against continuing overly broad statewide restrictions.
Further exacerbating blue-state residents’ pain is the increasing economic toll the shutdowns have created, all while red states were less affected and their reopening has yet to produce the expected massive spikes in COVID-19 infections. The Wall Street Journal notes, “Nearly two-thirds of leisure and hospitality jobs in New York and New Jersey and about half in California and Illinois disappeared between February and April compared to 43% in Florida, which was among the last states to lock down and first to reopen. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis also provided exemptions for lower-risk businesses including contractors, manufacturers and some retailers. Four percent of construction workers in Florida lost their jobs compared to 41% in New York, 27% in New Jersey, 17% in California and 11% in Illinois.”
In short, blue states are experiencing the worst from both the coronavirus itself and Democrats’ overly aggressive response to it, which is killing their economies. No wonder the political divide is particularly acute with this pandemic.
Sometimes graphs are too dumb for words. Pew Research in other words: “Hey, at least infection rates in Democrat districts are declining faster!”
More Great Analysis
Robin Smith marvels at San Francisco’s dramatic loss of residents from policies that preceded the COVID shutdown.
Willie Richardson adds perspective on Joe Biden’s ridiculous “you ain’t black” remarks.
Above the Fold
“A dereliction of our duty as elected officials”: House Republicans sue Speaker Nancy Pelosi in bid to stop unconstitutional proxy voting (Fox News)
Justice Department closes insider-trading investigations of Senators Dianne Feinstein, Kelly Loeffler, and James Inhofe; Richard Burr inquiry continues (NPR)
Government & Politics
Twitter is fact-checking Trump’s tweets using fake-news outlets WaPo and CNN (The Daily Wire)
YouTube censors criticism of China; site automatically deletes terms used by regime critics (The Washington Free Beacon)
Richard Grenell declassifies slew of Russia probe files, as John Ratcliffe takes helm as DNI (Fox News)
U.S. ahead of schedule in cutting Afghanistan troop strength; just 8,600 remain (Reuters)
Business & Economy
Salaries get chopped for many Americans who manage to keep their jobs (Bloomberg)
Reopening optimism fuels stock-market surge (Washington Examiner)
Culture & Heartland
Memorial Day weekend shootings leave 10 dead in Chicago — the most since 2015 (AP)
Illinois Democrats bank on a congressional bailout; state budget relies on billions in federal assistance (The Washington Free Beacon)
Obfuscation: New York health website deletes Governor Andrew Cuomo’s order linked to nursing-home fatalities (Fox News)
Birds of a feather flock together: WHO praises Communist China for “very consistent message” of “openness” in virus investigation (Washington Examiner)
China wants to keep COVID tracking system in place permanently, fold it into social-credit system (The Daily Caller)
Despite confiscation, New Zealand sees most gun crime in a decade (NRA-ILA)
Policy: Donald Trump is right to dump the Open Skies Treaty (The Daily Signal)
Policy: The space business is about to get really serious (American Enterprise Institute)
Satire: California Governor Gavin Newsom reassures public that the church of the state is still open during lockdown (Genesius Times)
For more of today’s editors’ choice headlines, visit In Our Sights.
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Video: How Planned Parenthood Uses Uber to Arrange Secret Abortions — The abortion mill utilizes the judicial-bypass process to exploit teenagers.
John Stossel Video: Free Speech for All — People complain that social-media companies like Facebook and Twitter often ban good content. What’s the solution?
For more of today’s columns, visit Right Opinion.
Insight (and memo to Michael Bloomberg): “Let us not forget that the cultivation of the earth is the most important labor of man. When tillage begins, other arts will follow. The farmers, therefore, are the founders of civilization.” —Daniel Webster (1782-1852)
Observations: “Overall the Empire State, with not even 6 percent of the nation’s population, has accounted for fully 24 percent of America’s traceable pandemic deaths, as well as 22 percent of its confirmed caseload. Whether these statistical curves will flatten over time remains to be seen, but right now, there is no obvious reason to award [Andrew] Cuomo any medals for insightful leadership.” —Bob McManus
For the record: “I just filed a lawsuit in federal court to overturn Speaker Pelosi’s unconstitutional proxy voting scheme. It could allow as few as 20 Representatives to control the votes of 220. This is NOT the representative democracy our Founders envisioned or what our Constitution allows.” —House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy
Food for thought: “One problem is Twitter is now implicitly endorsing content they don’t flag.” —Jason Willick
Irony: “I’m just saying, we fly over those states that voted for a racist tangerine for a reason.” —Twitter Head of Site Integrity Yoel Roth, November 2016
Belly laugh of the week: “I am America’s hope and President Trump’s nightmare.” —Islamist Representative Ilhan Omar
A blast from the past: “Paper ballots are extremely susceptible to fraud.” —Representative Jerry Nadler, 2004 (“There’s nothing rogue about encouraging Americans to participate in elections [via absentee ballots] — you’re just worried that they won’t vote for you.” —Jerry Nadler to Donald Trump, May 20, 2020)
The buck stops… “[Saying ‘You ain’t black’] was a mistake, number one. And I was smiling when [Charlamagne tha God] was asking the question. I shouldn’t have been such a wise guy to him. He was being a wise guy, and I responded in kind [emphasis added].” —Joe Biden
Grand delusions: “[Not wearing a mask is] stoking deaths. That’s not going to increase the likelihood that people are going to be better off. Presidents are supposed to lead, not engage in folly and be falsely masculine.” —Joe Biden
Demo-gogues: “Now, people can speculate [about reopening]. People can guess, ‘I think next week.’ ‘I think two weeks.’ ‘I think a month.’ I’m out of that business, because we all failed at that business. All the early national experts … were all all wrong.” —Governor Andrew Cuomo
And last… “Twitter to fact-check by pointing users to sites that repeatedly called the president a compromised seditious traitor based upon an unverified dossier paid for by his enemy.” —Twitter satirist @hale_razor
For more of today’s memes, visit the Memesters Union.
For more of today’s cartoons, visit the Cartoons archive.
Join us in prayer for our Patriots in uniform and their families — Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen — standing in harm’s way, and for our nation’s First Responders. We also 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