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Wednesday, August 16, 2017

America 2017: You Will Conform and You Will Love It

America 2017: You Will Conform and You Will Love It

Wednesday - August 16, 2017

RUSH: You know what this feels like to me? The cultural revolution of Mao Tse-tung when the Chinese became the ChiComs. This is exactly what it was like: “You will conform, and you will love it. You not only will conform, you will love it — and if you don’t, kablooey! It is to the work camps for you or to the reeducation jail for you — and if you don’t get it after that, then it’s dog doo-doo for food for you until you do get it.” Let me ask a simple question, ladies and gentlemen. You know, I can’t help it. I’m logical.

I can’t help it! That’s the way I think. I’m the mayor of Realville. I’m looking at the media, and I’m watching various… I did watch some TV last night, and I found out why I stopped. Boy, you talk about… I just was blowing up last night. I don’t like being mad. I tell myself, “You don’t have to be mad anymore, Rush, you’re 66!” I can’t help it. I get mad. It’s a good sign, probably. I’m watching TV, and I’m reading a lot of so-called conservative publications and blogs and websites, and if I didn’t know better… Well, no. I don’t have to qualify this.

I’m being told, you’re being told that Donald Trump does not want to tick off the Nazis or the Klan or the white supremacists, because that’s his base. Right? And he’s got to acknowledge ’em. He can’t make ’em mad. Why not? Well, because that’s who elected him. Do you realize how asinine that is, folks? Do you realize how literally stupid and dumb that line of thinking is? How many members of the Ku Klux Klan are there?

And subtract one with the death of Robert Byrd, Democrat senator from West Virginia. How many members of the Klan are there? I happen to know the number. How many neo-Nazis are there in the United States? How many registered neo-Nazis, and how many white supremacists? Do you actually think…? I’m asking all of you in this audience. Do you actually think that the people who elected Donald Trump are the Ku Klux Klan, the Nazis, and white supremacists? Is that who elected him?

Because that’s what your media is telling you, and that’s what many in your conservative media are joining with the left in saying that Trump is doing all this because Trump is trying to accommodate these wacko right-wingers ’cause that’s who voted for him, and he can’t afford to lose ’em. Or — get this, I forget who said it — that Trump will take the support of anybody who loves him. “He’s so desperate to be loved, and if the Nazis love him, you will not ever hear him condemn them.” Except that he has! He’s condemned the Nazis! He condemned the bigots.

He condemned the white supremacists and the Klan — and, you know, Trump when he was flirting with the presidency originally back in 2000 with the Reform Party, you know why he quit the Reform Party? Because David Duke joined it. He quit the Reform Party because Pat Buchanan joined it. You know, this is the party that Perot started back in 1992, or at least was founded around Perot, and Trump was flirting with a presidential bid back in 2000, 2004, whenever it was, and he quit the party the moment the Klan got their hands in it.

There is no history of Donald Trump associating with the Klan. None whatsoever. But beyond that, people are saying that Trump is insensitive and he’s boorish and he’s a pig, and now he’s sympathetic to all of these extreme right-wing groups ’cause that’s who elected him. Okay, how many members of the Klan are there, folks? Have you Wikipedia’d this yet? The number is 200,000 tops. Tops! How many white supremacists are there? Where do they live? How do you campaign for them? Where do you get their votes? Where are they registered and how do you reach them in a campaign?

And now the Nazis, the neo-Nazis, where are they? How many of them are there? Add all three of these groups. How many people are we talking about, and we’re told these are the people that elected Trump? It’s not possible, folks. It simply isn’t possible, and therefore the idea that Trump refuses to criticize them even though he has? The media says he didn’t mean it on Monday, so they’re not letting him credit for criticizing. “He didn’t really mean it in his press conference Monday.

“He showed that he won’t criticize ’em, ’cause he likes them, ’cause he needs them.” So now you’re being lied to and told that Donald Trump is president because the Klan, the Nazis, and the white supremacists are his base, and that’s why he will not condemn them. Please don’t tell me you buy into that. Please. Please don’t tell me that you have bought that. Okay, let’s go back to the phones. Here is Diane in Oklahoma. Welcome. Great to have you on the program. How are you doing?

CALLER: Hi, Rush. I am a great admirer of yours. My husband and I both really admire you, and we appreciate your statesmanship, your ability — God-given — to reason and articulate. Thank you for being my voice, our voice. I too was born in 1951. Good year.

RUSH: Wow.

CALLER: In 1987, I first heard you. I had the radio on during my lunch break in the car, and I thought, “Oh, brother. Another brash, loudmouth, bombastic idiot liberal talk show host.”

RUSH: Liberal!

CALLER: And then suddenly I stopped and I listened, and I thought, “My gosh, he’s a brash, loudmouth, bombastic, non-idiot conservative talk show host,” and I have seldom missed your show since then.

RUSH: (laughing)

CALLER: We’re 24/7 members, and… Anyway, we are really appreciate everything that you helped us to learn. In my early adulthood, I learned about revisionist history. I read original William Bradford writings. I’m thrilled with your children’s series, Rush Revere. I’ve lived and worked in China, and every time stuff like this comes up, I just think, “If only Americans would read the history of China and Mao Tse-tung and what he did.” I have a lot of Chinese-American friends who came here from China, and they’re Trump supporters simply because they said, “You know, we see what the Democrats and the liberals are doing, and it’s very much Mao-like.” Just listening to you today, I agree that this is not innocent on the liberal side.

RUSH: There’s a “but” coming in all of this, isn’t there? There’s a “but” coming, right?

CALLER: No, because I’ve been listening fourth to you, and I’m just thinking, “Man, we have revisionists, not just history. We got revisionist current event spinners every day in the media.” The only thing, as I was listening in the last couple of days, I did have to come to the conclusion that — and my husband and I discussed it. If we had been there, we would have quickly found a news reporter — though they probably wouldn’t have reported it. But we would have removed ourselves as very fine people, and I do see what you’re saying and I’ve listened more closely —

RUSH: Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait. Hold it. Why would you have removed yourselves?

CALLER: Because at that point I think we would have been identified with what was being promoted from the white supremacists and from the neo-Nazis, and we don’t identify with that in anyway.

RUSH: Wait a second, Diane. This was not a Trump rally. Do you understand that?

CALLER: Yes.

RUSH: There would have been no reason why you would have gone there. There isn’t a Trump rally. It’s not a conservative rally. It was a rally on the part of people who got a permit. They oppose statues being torn down. They oppose the attempt to erase aspects of American history.

CALLER: Yes. Yes.

RUSH: And you’re telling me that had you been there, you would have split the scene the first Nazi sign that you saw, the first swastika?

CALLER: No. As soon as I saw what was happening, I would have split the scene, absolutely.

RUSH: Well, what do you think happened that would have caused you to split the scene?

CALLER: Violence. And that would have been violence on either side.

RUSH: Right.

CALLER: Now, also, this is so funny because we have very few what I would call liberal friends. I mean, we just don’t. We just don’t run in those circles. But there are people in our lives that we dearly love, my niece and then two godchildren, 21 and 18. Great niece, actually. But they’re very liberal. They’ve been, you know, schooled in what kids are being schooled in, and so for the first time I’m trying to listen to their articulations. I mean, they’re getting fed the regular —

RUSH: How old are they?

CALLER: — the internet media, the Yahoo media, all that, they’re being fed that every day.

RUSH: How old are they?

CALLER: Well, the niece is 45, but the young ones are 21 and 18.

RUSH: Okay. All right. So you are — (interruption) Hey, Brian, our little iPhone here just got a FaceTime call. Ha-ha. The private iPhone that we use for broadcast purposes just got a — I’m gonna tell ’em I do not want to answer it, all right. We actually use this for the Dittocam. So for the first time you are sensitive to what they think?

CALLER: Yeah. Because I love them so much.

RUSH: Right.

CALLER: You know, when you have a personal love —

RUSH: Okay. Let’s cut to the chase. What do you mean by all of this? ‘Cause I really am out of time now, but I want to stick with you, find out what your point is. You’ve had a long setup here to what I know is a point you want to make to me that you’re tiptoeing up to. Just hit me between the eyes with it. Let me have it, Diane.

CALLER: Because I’ve been listening to you since I first called in, I think you very clearly said that Trump was not saying that there are very fine people in the white supremacist movement or in the neo-Nazi movement, but that’s what’s being portrayed, that’s what these young people are hearing, and that’s what all the liberals are hearing, and that’s all they hear.

RUSH: Okay, but in the case of your niece, your great niece, and your nephew, do you tell them they’re wrong, or do you not, because you love them and you might find it pointless to try. How do you deal with this? You say you’re more open to what they think. But what if they’re wrong in your estimation and you love them and you don’t want to them to be wrong, you want them to see the truth, do you tell them?

CALLER: I do think they give me time and they listen. I appreciate that so much. In fact, he just bought a new iPhone, well, it’s an iPhone 6, but new for him, I just thought, gosh, all you’d have to do is get something from Rush and you’d probably listen to him for a while. He did do the Constitution 101 and 102 as Hillsdale College at my request, so he is not a totally closed-minded young man.

RUSH: Well, that’s good. That’s good. Your effort and your time spent is worth it. Well, look, Diane, I’m glad you called. I have to take a break because, as I said, I’m way long here. I appreciate it.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: Jeff in Dover, Florida, welcome, sir. It’s great to have you here with us.

CALLER: Rush, what an honor. Twice in my lifetime. If my father were still here with us, I know I would be getting a call. “Son, was that you on the phone with Rush Limbaugh? People wait all their lives to talk to him.”

RUSH: (chuckling)

CALLER: Rush, I had a point I’d like to make. If Democrats want to erase history and to try to take away who was what in history, we need to look at the fact that it was Democrats that were the KKK. Democrat senators like Robert Byrd and Algore Sr. need to have their names removed from every street, every building — everything, anything on a military base that deals with anybody in the Democratic Party. Because if they want to go back to history, Rush, with Thomas Jefferson, you have to go back in history to where it all started. What party started it all? What party opposed the freedom for slaves? What party opposed the right of those slaves to vote? What party opposed the right of women to vote, and what party in a larger majority actually opposed the civil rights of everyone in the sixties? What party caused the harm and the damage to the people of the sixties? They were all Democrats, Rush. They were not Republicans.

RUSH: And a socialist-communist assassinated JFK, and the Democrats started the Vietnam War.

CALLER: Yes, sir, and then Richard Nixon got the blame for the Vietnam War when he was the one who wanted to finish it to get us off it — and finish it the correct way instead of the political way the Democrats ran the war.

RUSH: I remember that. I remember that. “Peace with honor.” Yeah. Now, look, here’s something may surprise you. It may surprise you. Some of these people on the left are indeed so wacko that they don’t care. Their loyalty, some of these people, is not too the Democrat Party. Some of these people, if they find out that Algore’s dad was in the same ballpark as some of these other people, they’ll go for him. Now, the leaders of the movement would probably trying to get a handle on that. In West Virginia, do you realize you’d have to rename practically every highway?

Do you know how many things in West Virginia are named for Robert Byrd? And Robert Byrd was a grand Kleagle. He was a recruiter for the KKK. Now, he ended up renouncing it. They even let him use the N-word on a Sunday show ’cause he was a Democrat and he didn’t mean it in a bad way. But if you start doing this this, that’s what Trump was asking, once you start this, where does it stop.

How about the Russell B. Long Senate office building? Do you know who Russell B. Long was? Well, he’s another one of these segregationist Democrats from the glory days of the Democrat Party in the fifties and sixties in the South. And his name is all over Washington, D.C. You’re gonna have to rip his name off the number one Senate office building.

I mean, if they’re gonna go after George Washington, which they are saying they’re gonna do — look, Al Sharpton was on with Charlie Rose two nights ago on PBS and said in response to question that Charlie Rose did not disagree with, the Jefferson Memorial should be taken down. I mean, you can’t rename it, ’cause it went up as the Jefferson Memorial. Take it down. And Charlie Rose did not disagree.

So if you’re gonna go after the founders, Jefferson and Washington, which I have no doubt this group is gonna do. Folks, which group does not like this country, and it’s not just because of slavery. Slavery is a convenient entree for them, but they have grievances about this country that predate slavery and postdate slavery. Their real objection to this country is individual liberty and freedom. These people want a massive of government, collectivist government that redistributes income under the premise of equality and fairness.

But the true authoritarians here are these people on the leftist protest march. These are the people demanding fealty. These are the people demanding, you will support gay marriage, and you will love it. You will support transgender bathrooms, and you will like it. It’s not enough that you do not oppose us, you must like it. You must agree with gay marriage. Whatever their cause is, it’s not enough that you don’t oppose it. You must like it. Cultural revolution stuff.

The authoritarianism that James Clyburn is worried about is on his side of the aisle, pure and simple. And all of these young protest marchers, whether they know it or not, are advocating for that very authoritarianism. They are advocating for the elimination of free speech, on the basis that they’re improving things. “Yes, well, we are going to eliminate speech that offends, Mr. Limbaugh, and we’re gonna eliminate speech that hurts. Nobody should have to hear things they don’t want to hear.”

And so limiting speech is presented as a great, great advancement. Limiting any other number of freedoms will be portrayed the same way, as advancing our sophisticated society. That’s what this is all about.

Clyburn Compares Trump to Hitler!

Clyburn Compares Trump to Hitler!

Wednesday - August 16, 2017

RUSH: Grab sound bite number 29. Yeah, yeah. We’ll get to the early sound bites in the next half hour. This is Jim Clyburn, he is Democrat, South Carolina. He was on Wolf Blitzer’s CNN show this afternoon. He’s African-American, if you didn’t know. Congressman Clyburn is a member of Congressional Black Caucasians too. He’s a big guy in the Democrat Party. Wolf Blitzer said, “What was your reaction, as someone who has worked so hard in this area of civil rights all these years, what is your reaction to Trump in the press conference yesterday?”

CLYBURN: We remember from our studies what happened in 1930s in Germany. I told a business group down at Hilton Head several weeks before the election that what I saw coming was a replay of what happened in Nazi Germany. The fact of the matter is, Hitler was elected as chancellor of Germany. He did not become a dictator until later when people began to be influenced by his foolishness. We just elected a president, and he’s got a lot of foolishness going on. And I’m afraid that too many people are being influenced by that foolishness.

RUSH: Name ’em. Name ’em. I just got some. I just watched somebody complaining that Trump’s making a big mistake here’s ’cause his base is only 30%. He’s got not big enough base to get his agenda done. That Trump needs to go out and broaden the base, needs to appeal to all kinds of different people. He can’t do it, the media’s never gonna allow that. Hitler had the media, Hitler was the media.

Comparing Trump to Hitler? They fired Jeffrey Lord for writing Sieg Heil in a tweet — they took it all of out of context. He was in a knock-down, drag-out with some Media Matters people who were accusing him of being a Nazi, Jeffrey Lord. Of course, the Democrats have moral authority. They’re victims, African-Americans, he’s a victim, he can do anything, call Trump anything. But he doesn’t work at CNN. CNN’s happy to have people that are not employees call Trump Hitler and call Trump a Nazi and so forth.

Here’s how it goes together. So Trump does the press conferences, he had this big weekend protest where the media portrays everybody out there as a Nazi or a Klansman supporting Trump. And here comes Clyburn, “Well, I feel like we’re watching Germany in the 1930s, got Hitler being reborn right before our very eyes.” This is more like if we want draw historical parallel, this is more like the cultural revolution in China when China became communist China. Trump doesn’t have anywhere near the popularity that Hitler had.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: Now, my staff thinks that I might be in a little bit of trouble. (interruption) Do you still think I’m in a little bit of trouble here? (interruption) If I get in trouble over this, it isn’t gonna be my fault. It’s gonna be because people do not understand history. Let’s put this this context, ’cause they’re probably right. Somebody’s gonna probably hear that out of context and say, “Oh, my God, did you hear what Limbaugh said? Oh, my God!” And they’re gonna run with it. Here’s the context.

Again, an audio sound bite was sent to me from James Clyburn, member of Congressional Black Caucasians. He’s on CNN with Wolf Blitzer, and he claims that what he saw from the minute Trump was elected was identical to what happened in Nazi Germany with Adolf Hitler coming to power. James Clyburn said, “I told a business group down in Hilton Head several weeks before the election that what I saw coming was a replay of what happened in Nazi Germany. The fact of the matter is, Hitler was elected as Chancellor of Germany.

“He did not become a dictator until later, when people began to be influenced by his foolishness. We just elected a president, and he’s got a lot of foolishness going on and I’m afraid that too many people are being influenced by that foolishness.” Okay. So what we’re looking at here is history repeating and Donald Trump is on the same pathway that Adolf Hitler was on. What is missing in this is Adolf Hitler — and people cite this as a warning. People use this bit of information as a warning against charismatic, puppet-master type of politicians.

Hitler was overwhelmingly popular in the early stages of the period of the Nazi, National Socialist Party. He was overwhelmingly popular. Trump is nowhere near that, and that’s all I was saying. It’s not historically inaccurate to say Hitler was popular. Now, if that’s all you hear me say and you hear no context, can you imagine what some leftist organization could do with that? “Did you hear what Limbaugh said? Limbaugh says Hitler was popular!” No, I didn’t.

In the context of a Democrat claiming that Trump is Hitler and that we’re on the same pathway that Trump is on his way to becoming Hitler, I’m saying Trump is never gonna be able to pull that off. Hitler had the media. Hitler owned the propaganda apparatus. Trump doesn’t own any of that. My point is there is no comparison. This is just an irresponsible comment from a Democrat who knows better. Clyburn knows better. But this is one of the oft-repeated allegations about Trump.

That he’s an authoritarian, that he’s dictator-like, that he’s using all these executive actions to get things done. Hey, you could have said the same thing about Obama. You could have said the same thing: Authoritarian. Who’s the guy that took over the health care system? Who’s the guy that tried to take over the American health care system — one-sixth of the U.S. economy — and bring it under the control of the government. I did not say nor did I imply — and you should not have inferred — that Hitler’s popularity was warranted. But it can’t be denied that in the early stages he was. That fact, as I say, is used by some people as a warning about certain other politicians who have those kinds of talents and access to propaganda apparatus.

Big Plans on the Hard Left for November 4

Dearest Charlottesville


Charlottesville Scenery History Violence Riot - 900

Dearest Charlottesville,

As someone who’s held a soft spot for Charlottesville since a trip to Monticello as a child, and who may someday reside there, may I share a bit of my heart?

I know you had a rough day Saturday. The ugliness that erupted was seen live around the world for hours on end. You now face the prospect of being associated with hate for the foreseeable future. I grieve for you and with you.

Images of the day’s violent clashes, the horrific car crash, and the unabashed racism will be pounded over and over into the nation’s consciousness, at least through the next election cycle. Further, any attempts to squash free speech in this country will be couched with the excuse “We don’t want another Charlottesville.” Charlottesville will be a noun, not a name. And not a good one.

Ask Waco what it’s like to become a symbol instead of a city. The Branch Davidian inferno took place in 1993. It took years, a good Baylor football team and the great “Fixer-Uppers” Chip and Joanna Gaines to refocus the nation on Waco’s charms instead of its tragedy.

What Defines You

However, as the church shooting in Charleston showed us, sometimes its not the awful that ends up defining you, but how you handle the awful. Blacks and whites in Charleston came together, hand-in-hand, arm-in-arm, heart-to-heart. They prayed and sang together.

The people of Charleston offered comfort to each other and forgiveness to the twisted young man who, like Saturday’s thugs, let hate hold dominion in his heart. Charleston chose love. Today we can say Dylann Roof did not define Charleston. Jesus Christ did.

Jesus implored us to love our neighbor, love our enemies, love one another. His example allows us no bitterness. It doesn’t allow us sharp tweets and pointed fingers. Turns out you can’t point fingers if your hands are lifted to God. He calls on us to follow Him rather than find common cause with the one who came to town looking to “kill, steal and destroy.”

President Trump has been stung for the sin of condemning hate “on many sides.” Your mayor Michael Signer could barely wait for the blood to dry before blaming Trump for the violence.  I beg you, Charlottesville, don’t fall into that demonic trap. Pretending “hate” is under the sole ownership of one group is a dangerous lie, even as it pertains to Saturday’s events. (See John Zmirak and Jason Jones’ Stream column After Charlottesville on that.) Pointing out a rat doesn’t mean you’re denying a snake’s a snake.

Ask yourself who gains by peddling such a lie? Who loses when innocents who condemn hate and racism are then deliberately associated with that one racist group?

It’s as inevitable as the Blue Ridge Mountains are old that the racist acts of a militant few will be pinned on anyone to the left of Ashley Judd. In fact, as Michael Brown points out, it’s already happening. I don’t want to see a city with such a distinct history get played.

The Suspicious Stand-Down

Charlottesville’s most famous resident wrote some of the most beautiful and powerful words in our nation’s history: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

I don’t know how anybody can set foot in your city without Jefferson’s words echoing in their heads. Yet it’s not hard to imagine that his statue is soon to be toppled, his precious Monticello torched, as police again are told to stand down.

Critics both left and right are wondering why on earth police not only held back, but ignored past protocols to keep the KKK walled off from counter-protesters. When bused-in counter-protesters include the violent Antifa anarchists and the virulent Black Lives Matter -- groups that could bring destruction to a bake sale -- such “stand down” orders are beyond negligent. They border on sedition.

Again, ask yourself: “Who benefits?” When I ask that question I can’t help but hear the Clinton operative caught on tape last year boasting about how they instigated violence at Trump rallies to create the meme his supporters were violent. Two cops ended up injured in Chicago. Saturday, two cops were killed. Your governor Terry McAuliffe, another Clinton operative, the man in charge of Virginia’s state troopers, quickly pointed the finger at Trump.

Who benefited from the stand down order? Who benefits now from the chaos?

Your mayor boasts that Charlottesville is the “Capital of the Resistance.” Some advertisement. He, too, had direct control of law enforcement. He, too, has deep ties to the Podesta machine. And as we said, he, too, raced out to blame Trump. History teaches us to be suspicious of such conveniences.

Jefferson once said, “The Tree of Liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.” I saw blood. I did not see much in the way of liberty. But I do see a form of “tyranny over the mind of man.”

Will We Be Safe to Speak?

Which gets to what worries me about the mayor’s boasts and actions. The rolling hills of Albemarle County have been calling my wife and I for several years now. And if God sends us there, the history, trees and streams, wineries and winding roads, will provide welcome. But will the mayor? Will the town, this “Capital of the Resistance”?

I am a Christian and a conservative -- you know, what the mayor’s breed would call a racist or Deplorable. Will I be free to speak in public? Could I even walk the streets in a cap from the nearby Trump Winery? If I open a business, does your mayor’s openness to Anitifa and aligned hate groups mean I can expect my store front to be smashed and looted?

Still, I have hope. Charlottesville has been there 255 years. Mayors and governors come and go. Your hills have seen countless bitter passions cede to the passage of time. Should you take up the challenge to love, a single day’s spasm of rage will play no major role moving forward.

We’ll be able to count ourselves blessed citizens of Old Dominion. To marvel where “Nature spread so rich a mantel under the eye” of Jefferson and God. Where we can freely and in fellowship with our neighbor enjoy life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.



Read More Here

Durham Police Took Pictures While Protesters Vandalized. Seattle Police Think That’s Insane


Let’s start with a review of the basics. Racists, and others with repugnant views, have a right to be repugnant and express those views in public in this country. We protect their right to free speech because if we fail to, we could very quickly endanger less repugnant views. As the American Civil Liberties Union tweeted this weekend, “The same laws used to silence bigots can be used to silence you.”

Counter-protesters, including Antifa, which has a history of violent tendencies, also have a right to protest gatherings of people with whom they disagree. Both sides are protected in this country, regardless of the content of their message. Things that aren’t legal and protected: assault, murder, vandalism, and all-out street battles between these two groups. Charlottesville wasn’t the first time they clashed, and it won’t be the last. So, how to keep one from becoming the other?

Charlottesville’s police force was criticized for letting protests devolve over a day and a half with little intervention. There will no doubt be better information about how exactly that happened after the city investigates the events that led up to the murder of 32-year-old Heather Heyer and injury of 20 others at the hands of a white nationalist who plowed his car into a group of protesters. Let’s leave the most complex and controversial model of policing from this week aside until we have the “extensive review” ordered by Gov. Terry McAuliffe.

But a similar meeting of protest and counter-protest happened in Seattle, and a gathering of protesters in Durham, North Carolina devolved into mob action that brought down a statue on public property. These two events were policed in very different ways.

Police forces are absolutely vital to protecting the outer limit of freedom for political speech while preventing a breakdown into brawling. This is a really, really hard job in an ever-changing environment sometimes animated by two sides with significant elements that desperately want to fight, and police  often do it while being called a bunch of names or threatened.

In Durham, a crowd gathered around 6 p.m. Monday and grew from 50 to more than 100 over two hours. It started with protesters sharing stories of personal experiences with racism, carrying signs, and chanting “No cops, no KKK, no facist USA.” This was all well within bounds of free speech and protest, the most egregious offense being some seriously Orwellian use of the English language: “We are going to find fighting avenues to be on the right side of history,” said the march’s organizer and emcee. “We are going to love like we mean it.”

Okay.

Then it moves into vandalism: 

A ladder was brought out, and placed in the back of the pedestal. A protester climbed the ladder and slipped a yellow, bungie-like cord around the soldier’s head and arm. A group of people pulled the long yellow cord. Within seconds the soldier fell, the metal collapsing as the statute did a somersault against the stone pedestal.

Protestors cheered and started to kick the crumpled mass.

Here’s how law enforcement reacted:

As the crowd moved toward the statue, members of the Durham County Sheriff’s Office videotaped the rally…

The line of protesters walked back to the old courthouse. Some took photographs with the fallen statute. Sheriff’s officials continued to take video.

No arrests were made that night. What message was Durham sending? That the speech rights of this group of people extend to damaging public property in front of law enforcement with impunity? Which other laws would this group have been allowed to break? Which other groups might get such lenience?

How long before someone tests that boundary? We shouldn’t allow “righteous” protesters of Confederate monuments to lawlessly trash them with impunity because someone else who thinks they’re righteous could come along and use their righteousness as a reason to trash pretty much anything. Days later, after criticism of the department for inaction, the Durham sheriff’s office arrested one protester.

On the other hand, we have Seattle—a place, it must be stipulated, with a rich and troubled history of navigating the line between free speech and rioting, police protection and police overreach. In Seattle’s case, there was a gathering of Patriot Prayer, a pro-Trump group, and a gathering a counter-protesters and Antifa forces.

The two gatherings were planned before the violence in Charlottesville, and were held blocks apart, but police did not allow counter-protesters to march all the way to the pro-Trump gathering because they worried about “a small group within the larger march that were clearly, in my experience, clearly there for violence,” said Assistant Seattle Police Chief Steve Wilske.

“If I would have allowed that entire march to go there, there is no way I’m going to keep those people from fighting,” Wilske said. “And once that fight starts, you’re going to have, potentially have, Charlottesville. You’re going to have what happened in Portland in June. And I can’t.”

One Seattle city councilmember is questioning the decision, but Wilske was undeterred: “If I have to do that to keep people from getting hurt, then that’s my responsibility.”

At the end of the day, both groups had marched, with no property damage or injuries reported. Local press reported the “Solidarity Against Hate” marchers challenged the police line, a few threw fireworks at officers, and the police pepper-sprayed part of the crowd. Police made three arrests and confiscated several makeshift weapons. 

Were both groups given pretty decent leeway to express themselves? Yes, although I understand the counter-protesters’ desire to get close to the other gathering to make their presence known. Local coverage and pictures of the pro-Trump event suggests plenty of counter-protesters made it to the park in which they were gathered, just not en masse, as an organized march.

But Seattle sent the message that law enforcement will take pretty reasonable measures to ensure that tense situations don’t explode into violent situations. That’s important to citizens attending the protest, and all those who call the city home. It’s a better message than Durham sent, where freedom of speech was protected, but the rule of law and protections against criminal action weren’t.



Read More Here

CNN's Jake Tapper: Obama Said Falsehoods And Got Away With It

Matt Vespa

At times, CNN’s Jake Tapper gets a bad reception from conservatives that’s not entirely fair. His employer is a constant target for President Trump and his supporters. Yes, CNN’s reporting on the Trump residency certainly has had its moments, but Tapper is one of the more even-keeled anchors. In an interview with Rolling Stone, the host noted how he read everything he can get his hands on, from both left and right publications. While he noted that journalists have to stand for the truth, facts, and human decency, he also admitted that Barack Obama made many false statements and got away with it because of the media’s liberal bias [bold text indicates Rolling Stone]:

What has covering President Trump taught you about yourself? 

It's forced me to come up with an ethos of covering politicians that I think I had been using before but had never voiced – which is that journalists have to take stands on behalf of facts, truth and basic human decency. I'm happy to cover him on policy debates as I would any other politician, but when he crosses the line and says things that aren't true, it's incumbent on journalists to point that out. We can't normalize behavior that is unacceptable, like making fun of disabled people.

[…]

There's a perception you've become more radical given your decision to call out Trump's falsehoods, but maybe it's just that people are simply more aware of it now.

A lot of people on the left didn't like it before, and now they like it. I don't want to compare President Obama and President Trump on these issues because they're different and the scale isn't even remotely the same. But President Obama said things that weren't true and got away with it more for a variety of reasons, and one is the media was much more supportive of him. The Obama White House thought I was self-righteous and a huge pain in the ass.

Well, that’s par for the course for the liberal media. They still haven’t gotten over their love affair with Obama.

Democratic Congresswoman: I Don't Like What Trump Said, So Let's Remove Him

Matt Vespa

A Democratic congresswoman was not pleased with President Trump’s remarks about the violent clashes in Charlottesville, Virginia yesterday and has called for the president to be removed from office. No, it’s not Maxine “Ragin’” Waters (D-CA); it’s Rep. Gwen Moore (D-WI). 

The president blamed both sides for the violence that occurred last Saturday, where white nationalist were protesting the removal of a Robert E. Lee statue. Left wing counter protesters arrived and brawls broke out. Many were sent to the hospital, but the day took a very tragic turn when a white nationalist—James Alex Fields Jr.—plowed through a bunch of counter protesters, injuring nineteen and killing one woman. There is no doubt that the fact that a white nationalist killed a woman changes the game. Antifa and their left wing allies are bullying thugs. They’re violent. They cause trouble, but their absurd antics didn’t lead to someone’s death in this case. Overall, yes, you cannot have a discussion about the heated political rhetoric and anti-free speech antics occurring in this country without talking about and condemning Antifa as well. Yet, that’s in a general sense. With regards to Charlottesville, you can still say Antifa are thugs, which they are, but the level of violence committed from both sides was not equal due to the vehicle attack. That being said, I don’t feel that a statement with which you find disagreement is cause for impeachment (via The Hill):

On Tuesday, Rep. Gwen Moore (D-Wis.) took that argument a long step forward, urging the removal of Trump, as well.

Moore, a member of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), said Trump’s remarks on Tuesday defending some of the white nationalist protesters in Charlottesville — while blaming counter-protesters, in part, for the eruption of violence — is evidence enough that Trump is unfit to serve as president of a country derived of multiculturalism. 

“As we once again hear Donald Trump defend those responsible for the deadly riot in Charlottesville and receive praise by hate groups like the KKK and neo-Nazis, the time has come for Republicans and Democrats to put aside our political differences and philosophical debates for a higher cause,” Moore said in a brief statement. 

“For the sake of the soul of our country, we must come together to restore our national dignity that has been robbed by Donald Trump’s presence in the White House,” she added. “My Republican friends, I implore you to work with us within our capacity as elected officials to remove this man as our commander-in-chief and help us move forward from this dark period in our nation’s history.” 

Trump removed from office because you don’t like what he said; that’s not going to happen. 

GOP thinks it has winning message on taxes

GOP thinks it has winning message on taxes
By Naomi Jagoda - 08-16-17 06:00 AM EDT

GOP lawmakers and strategists think they have a winning message on tax reform.

After a brutal fight over ObamaCare that included difficult votes and a painful loss on the Senate floor in July, Republicans are eager to move on to tax reform, which they argue will create jobs, simplify the tax code and put more money in people's wallets.

Voter enthusiasm for their legislation will be important.

Republicans desperately want to enact major legislation after the failure on ObamaCare, which was hastened by the dismal poll numbers of the GOP repeal bills.

Republicans can't afford to run into similar problems on their next top legislative goal.

The GOP thinks tax reform will be different, in part simply because tax cuts are an easier sell than the healthcare overhaul, which would have taken away benefits from millions of people.

"The focal point is this is about the American dream," Rep. Peter Roskam (R-Ill.), chairman of the House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Tax Policy, told The Hill on Tuesday.

Roskam, Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-Texas) and other members of the panel are pitching tax reform to the public on Wednesday at an event at former President Ronald Reagan's ranch in California.

Committee spokeswoman Emily Schillinger said that Brady "will speak directly to the American people about how members are working to deliver a new tax code - one that is fairer and simpler, creates more jobs, grows paychecks, and improves lives."

While Republicans think they have an easier argument to make on taxes than on healthcare, they still face significant challenges.

President Trump, who will need to be the salesman in chief for the proposal, has an anemic 38 percent approval rating in the RealClearPolitics average of polls. Those numbers will make Democrats less nervous about opposing him and could make it tougher for the White House to muscle any reluctant Republicans.

Republicans have been working over the August recess to get their constituents excited before the expected release of legislation in the fall.

In the past, tax cuts have been sold to the public through direct benefits.

In 2001, for example, President George W. Bush included rebate checks to taxpayers. Bush was also working with a budget surplus at a time when the nation's debt was not as great a concern as it has been in the last decade.

Rebate checks may not be in the cards this time, but GOP lawmakers are touting job creation, tax cuts for all individuals and simplification of the tax code as part of their pitch.

"What they need to be saying over and over is simple: that this is a jobs bill that is going to put money back in the pockets of Americans," said GOP strategist Ford O'Connell.

Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) stressed in an event last month at a New Balance factory in Massachusetts that "first and foremost, we're going to cut your taxes." His office also issued a news release on Tuesday that focused on why the tax code needs to be simpler.

These messages are part of the pitches for tax reform made by GOP senators and the White House as well.

"We believe everyday Americans know better how to spend their own money than the federal bureaucracy, and we want to help them keep as much of that hard-earned money as we can," Trump said in a weekly address in May.

But some strategists say the personalization of tax reform could be even more front-and-center in discussions.

GOP lawmakers and the Trump administration often spend a considerable amount of time discussing how tax reform will boost economic growth and business competitiveness.

Strategists suggested that it's important for Republicans to explain how more economic growth directly affects them, and some argued that lawmakers should cut to the chase and lead their tax-reform pitches with arguments about more jobs and more take-home income.

"The most important thing is to keep it on the day-to-day things that people are focused on, which in this case is jobs," said Jon McHenry, vice president of the GOP polling firm North Star Opinion Research.

Roskam agreed that it's important to keep the focus on what policies mean for constituents.

"Tax reform is not about charts and graphs," he said. "Tax reform is about changing the economic reality for everyday people for the better."

Experts suggested that lawmakers provide specifics, such as how much more money people will receive as a result of tax cuts and how many more jobs are likely to be created.

Conservative activists also said arguing for tax-code simplification is beneficial.

"Americans fear the IRS right now in part because the tax code is so complicated," Americans for Prosperity President Tim Phillips said.

Republicans talk about wanting to make the tax code so simple that most Americans would be able to file their taxes on a postcard, and lawmakers at events have held up a postcard based on the tax plan House Republicans released last year.

Jason Pye, vice president of legislative affairs at FreedomWorks, said that the postcard is an "effective visual."

Republicans will be vulnerable to attacks from Democrats that their tax plans amount to giveaways to wealthy individuals and corporations, since polls have shown that many voters believe rich people and corporations pay too little in taxes. Liberal groups and Democratic lawmakers are already organizing to push back against any proposed tax cuts for the rich.

Strategists said that a focus on jobs, across-the-board tax cuts and simplification could help Republicans' counter attacks from Democrats.

If Republicans make it clear that tax reform boosts jobs for everyone, they are "nullifying" Democrats' arguments about wealth inequality, O'Connell said.

Phillips said that if Republicans strip tax preferences for special interests out of the tax code as they intend to do, it will both make the tax code fairer and help to combat the arguments that legislation is benefiting the rich.

In addition to highlighting the tax breaks used by the wealthy that will be eliminated, some also suggested that GOP lawmakers point to aspects of their tax plans that specifically benefit the middle class, such as a larger standard deduction.

"I think you'll be able to cushion the blow considerably," said Rohit Kumar, a former aide to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) who now leads the tax policy practice at PwC.

Trump defiant: 'Blame on both sides' in Charlottesville

Trump defiant: 'Blame on both sides' in Charlottesville
By Jordan Fabian and Jonathan Easley - 08-15-17 16:37 PM EDT

NEW YORK - President Trump on Tuesday defiantly asserted that there is "blame on both sides" for the deadly violence over the weekend in Charlottesville, Va., remarks that inflamed his critics and reignited debate over his hesitance to condemn white supremacists.

At a wild, impromptu press conference at Trump Tower, the president defended his initial response that "many sides" were to blame to the violence at the "Unite the Right" rally in Virginia, saying he needed to "know the facts" before calling out neo-Nazis and the Ku Klux Klan.

In extended remarks on the rally, Trump bulldozed through a statement he made at the White House one day earlier, when he declared that "racism is evil" and decried the white supremacists responsible for fomenting the violent clashes as "criminals and thugs."

The second statement was designed to quell a firestorm of criticism from Democrats and Republicans alike who assailed him for failing to unequivocally condemn the white supremacist groups.

But on Tuesday, facing a barrage of questions from reporters about why he did not immediately condemn racist protesters by name, Trump doubled down, saying that his first response was "excellent" and that liberal counterprotesters - whom he dubbed the "alt-left" - were just as much to blame as white supremacists for the violence.

"What about the alt-left that came charging at the - as you say, the alt-right?" Trump asked. "Do they have any semblance of guilt? What about the fact they came charging with clubs in their hands, swinging clubs? Do they have any problem? I think they do. As far as I am concerned, that was a horrible, horrible day."

That comment drew praise from David Duke, a former KKK leader who attended Saturday's rally.

"Thank you President Trump for your honesty & courage to tell the truth about #Charlottesville & condemn the leftist terrorists in BLM/Antifa," Duke tweeted.

Democrats reacted furiously at Trump's latest comments, calling them a sign he was not sincere when he condemned racism on Monday.

"The president's press conference today made plain that the statement he gave on Saturday is what he really believes," said House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) "There is only one side to be on when a white supremacist mob brutalizes and murders in America. The American people deserve a president who understands that."

Criticism also came from the president's own party.

Texas Republican Rep. Will Hurd said he was not proud of how Trump had handled himself at the press conference.

"Apologize," Hurd said on CNN. "Racism, bigotry, anti-Semitism of any form is unacceptable. The leader of the free world should be unambiguous about that."

"I don't think anybody should be looking at getting props from a grand dragon of the KKK as any kind of sign of success," he added.

Some Trump aides appeared to be surprised by the president's comments, which he made after an announcement about infrastructure. Reporters were told before the event that National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn and Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao would take questions on the infrastructure plan - but that Trump would not.

White House chief of staff John Kelly stood to the side of the golden elevator bank close to where Trump spoke, looking down and clasping his hands. Cohn, who stood beside the president, smiled and tried to steal glances with other aides. White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders whispered to top communications aide Hope Hicks.

After being cloistered inside his Manhattan high rise all day, Trump appeared determined to get his feelings and thoughts off his chest.

He bristled at critics who have said he should have condemned white supremacist groups and neo-Nazis immediately and that he didn't because he feared alienating extremist elements of his base.

"I will tell you something. I watched those very closely, much more closely than you people watched it," Trump said. "And you had a group on one side that was bad, and you had a group on the other side that was also very violent. And nobody wants to say that. But I'll say it right now. You had a group on the other side that came charging in without a permit, and they were very, very violent."

Violent clashes erupted Saturday in Charlottesville, a college town, during a large gathering of white supremacists and far right demonstrators. Heather Heyer, 32, was killed and at least 19 were injured when a car drove into a crowd of counterdemonstrators. The alleged driver, a 20-year-old Ohio man, is accused of having ties to white supremacist groups.

Trump called the driver a "disgrace" but declined to say unequivocally whether he committed an act of terrorism.

"You can call this terrorism, you can call it murder, you can call it whatever you want," he said. "The driver of the car is a murderer and what he did was a horrible, horrible, inexcusable thing."

The president said he has not yet contacted the family of Heyer, but said a statement made by her mother "was a beautiful statement ... I really appreciated it."

When he was asked whether he would visit Charlottesville, the president said he owns "one of the largest wineries in the United States" in the area. Trump purchased the winery in 2011 and later turned it over to his son, Eric.

Trump has been quick to condemn terrorist attacks perpetrated by Islamic extremist groups. But he stressed Tuesday he wanted to take his time with the Charlottesville incident.

He said that not all of the white nationalists protesting were racists. Some, Trump said, had gathered to protest the taking down of a Confederate statue.

"I have condemned neo-Nazis. I have condemned many different groups, but not all of those people were neo-Nazis, believe me," Trump said.

"Not all of those people were white supremacists, by any stretch. Those people were also there because they wanted to protest taking down of a statue, Robert E. Lee."

A reporter asked whether Trump believes white supremacists were "treated unfairly."

"You had a lot of people in that group who were there to innocently protest, and very legally protest," Trump said. "I don't know if you know. They had a permit. The other group didn't have a permit. So I only tell you this: There are two sides to a story."

He accused the media of trying to whitewash history, asking if they would support removing statues of former presidents George Washington and Thomas Jefferson because they owned slaves.

"You're changing history, you're changing culture," Trump said.

- This story was updated at 6:38 p.m.