Mid-Day Snapshot · Feb. 2, 2021

THE FOUNDATION

“The great desideratum in Government is, so to modify the sovereignty as that it may be sufficiently neutral between different parts of the Society to controul one part from invading the rights of another, and at the same time sufficiently controuled itself, from setting up an interest adverse to that of the entire Society.” —James Madison (1787)

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IN TODAY’S DIGEST

FEATURED ANALYSIS

Manchin Bristles at Harris Pressure Play

Thomas Gallatin

In a conspicuously timed and located news interview last week, Kamala Harris intimated to a West Virginia news station that the state’s coal industry would essentially die due to the Biden administration’s “green energy” agenda. But take heart, West Virginians, she added. There will be lots of new career opportunities for unemployed miners — jobs like “reclaiming abandoned land mines.” Just how many “abandoned land mines” Harris believes are lying around West Virginia is anybody’s guess, but nothing says “I care” like a California elitist telling West Virginians what to do.

Obviously, the real reason behind Harris’s West Virginia visit had little to do with building connections with West Virginians, 68% of whom voted for Donald Trump compared to Joe Biden’s 29%. Rather, Harris was there to exert pressure on the state’s moderate Democrat senator, Joe Manchin. Get in line with Biden’s $1.9 trillion “American Rescue Plan” was the unmistakable message.

Harris’s gaffe about “abandoned land mines” certainly grabbed headlines. She probably meant to say “abandoned mine lands.” But that really wasn’t the most offensive statement she made. Instead, it was her condescending elitism — the suggestion that miners’ jobs were dispensable because she knows what’s best for them. Worst of all was Harris’s overly simplistic, idealistic, and completely impractical claims that miners’ jobs, eliminated by government mandates, could easily transition to new equally fulfilling and well-paying careers.

It’s as if Harris and her elitist ilk view Americans and their careers like a box of Legos to be destroyed and reassembled in completely different forms, with little appreciable consequence to those whose careers have suddenly been eradicated. Recall that “Blue Collar” Biden expressed this same obtuse elitism back in December 2019 when he told a group of workers in New Hampshire, “Anybody who can go down 3,000 feet in a mine can sure as hell learn to program as well. Anybody who can throw coal into a furnace can learn how to program, for God’s sake!”

The good news is that Harris’s pressure play backfired, as Manchin clear took umbrage. “I saw [the Harris interview],” Manchin responded. “I couldn’t believe it. No one called me [about it]. We’re going to try to find a bipartisan pathway forward, but we need to work together. That’s not a way of working together.”

Making it even more obvious that this was indeed a pressure play to get Democrats in line behind Biden’s agenda was the fact that the one other state targeted by Harris’s local media appeal was Arizona, the home of Senator Krysten Sinema. She has expressed the unacceptable desire for a bipartisan stimulus bill. As The Federalist’s Jayme Metzgar observed, “Harris’s media blitz was an unsubtle attempt to generate popular demand for the multi-trillion-dollar stimulus bill, pressuring Manchin and Sinema to stop agitating for bipartisan compromise and fall in line with the party.”

Manchin remains the Senate wildcard. But he’s been around long enough to recognize these partisan pressure plays, and he represents a state that is overwhelmingly red. We’ll see if Harris’s ham-handed approach only ensures that his demand of a bipartisan stimulus bill be met.

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Christian Org Censored for Pointing Out Biology

Nate Jackson

There are some immutable truths in this world that we can all agree on: A cloudless sky is blue, gravity keeps our feet on the ground, an XY chromosome pairing produces a male human… [record player screeches] Hold on a minute. YOU CAN’T SAY THAT! shout the leftist censors.

Among Joe Biden’s first acts was to hire Dr. Richard Rachel Levine as assistant secretary for health at the Department of Health and Human Services. We warned that picking a so-called “transgender” individual for such a post was both pandering to a radical constituency and a trigger for silencing conservatives who have to talk about Levine and use actual facts and science to do it. It took about a week for that prophecy to come true.

The Daily Citizen, part of Focus on the Family, was suspended from Twitter for “hateful” rhetoric regarding Levine. That rhetoric? “Dr. Levine is a transgender woman, that is, a man who believes he is a woman.”

Except the Citizen’s comment is quite literally true.

According to a glowing 2016 bio in The Washington Post, “Levine does not discuss whether she took hormones or had surgery, calling it a private medical matter.” It’s not a “private medical matter” when organizations are being censored by Big Tech for attempting to explain the situation.

Reading Levine’s Wikipedia biography is like walking into George Orwell’s 1984. Just as history was revised according to whatever “Big Brother” wanted it to be at any given moment, Levine’s achievements all list him as her. Except that he didn’t even “identify” as her until after he had achieved many of those things as a man — like playing linebacker at an all-boys high school. He married and divorced a woman with whom he had two children. Yet, “She transitioned in 2011,” says Wikipedia, without elaborating on what that even means or getting the pronouns to agree chronologically. How could “she” “transition” unless he “became” “she”? And how can we even write about this stuff without confusing the heck out of people?

The answer is there’s no such thing as “transitioning.” It’s dangerous and harmful pseudoscience. Richard can go to therapy, grow his hair long, and change his name to Rachel, as Levine has. He can even dose up on hormones and undergo cosmetic body-altering surgery, which he won’t admit one way or the other. But he cannot change the immutable fact of his God-given XY chromosomes.

YOU CAN’T SAY THAT! scream the censors.

Focus on the Family President Jim Daly put it succinctly: “Big Tech titans are the new emperors of the twenty-first century, wielding an inordinate amount of power by silencing individuals and organizations that don’t comport or cave to their political or social point of view.”

And you may not point out that the emperor has no clothes.

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Supporting Congressional Term Limits?

Harold Hutchison

Congressional term limits have again become a cause célèbre among those seeking to win the support of grassroots Patriots for higher office. In one sense, the push is very understandable because our Founders desired citizen legislators, not just professional ones. But the man leading the charge, Texas Senator Ted Cruz, is placing a risky bet to bring America closer to constitutional practices. In reality, Cruz’s proposal for a limit of three terms in the House of Representatives and two terms in the Senate will have some unintended but drastic adverse consequences.

Before folks get too invested in the approach championed by Cruz, they need to keep in mind that fond hopes do not always materialize. To illustrate, we’re reminded of some particularly notorious pre-game comments in not-too-distant National Football League history. In November 2007, Todd Sauerbrun, a punter and kickoff specialist for the Denver Broncos, publicly announced his intent to not kick away from Devin Hester of the Chicago Bears, who had arguably laid claim to being the greatest return specialist of all time by the end of his second year in the NFL. It didn’t go well.

For the record, here’s how Sauerbrun’s plan worked out: Hester took a punt back 75 yards for a touchdown in the third quarter. After a Broncos score in that same quarter, Hester returned the following kickoff 88 yards for a touchdown. To put it bluntly, Sauerbrun’s faith in his teammates had some unintended adverse effects on his team, which lost the game thanks in part to Hester’s returns, and his career in the NFL, which ended after that season.

In the same way Sauerbrun had faith in his teammates’ ability to tackle Hester, Cruz is placing a lot of faith in citizen legislators to bring America closer to constitutional practices. But what is likely to happen is far different than what the hopes were. In reality, Cruz’s proposed term limits will have some unintended but drastic adverse consequences.

One of the consequences is the fact that, in general, they will result in a massive shift of power from elected lawmakers to unelected bureaucrats, lobbyists, and the legislative staffers. During Donald Trump’s administration, bureaucrats undermined him, usurped policymaking power that belonged to elected officials, and engaged in multiple abuses at the federal and state levels. This should warn against shifting power away from elected lawmakers.

If there is one thing bureaucrats know, it’s how to be dilatory and to obstruct any sort of progress. Does anyone think encouraging that behavior is a good idea?

Furthermore, with the constant inflow of new members of Congress, power would shift outside government to lobbyists, who would have far more time and experience discussing various issues than the lawmakers they’re talking to. In addition, staffers will have a lot more influence because, after all, lawmakers will be gone in the not-too-distant future, so they will be more likely to cater to lobbyists and bureaucrats as they seek a more stable paycheck in the public policy arena.

That power shift is just one negative. Another is the fact that it wouldn’t just clean out Congress of the likes of Maxine Waters; it would also have prematurely ended the career of Orrin Hatch after the 1988 election. Does anyone think that absent Hatch’s efforts we’d have Clarence Thomas on the Supreme Court? Hatch, thanks to his longevity, played key roles in the confirmation of four other justices as well. Do we throw out the good lawmakers with the bad?

Term limits are a feel-good measure that is held out as a way to rid us of bad career politicians. But there is already something that offers grassroots Patriots a chance to oust bad politicians: elections. Perhaps the effort pushing a constitutional amendment that may never pass would be better focused on the hard political work to replace bad politicians with good ones, often by changing the minds of our fellow Americans.

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Obama Judge Goes Easy on Clinesmith

Thomas Gallatin

In a decision that is immensely frustrating to conservatives who endured years of government officials engaging in a willful attempt to subvert and ultimately remove a duly elected president, Judge James Boasberg sentenced Kevin Clinesmith to 12 months probation and 400 hours of community service. Who is Kevin Clinesmith? He’s the individual responsible for altering an email to indicate that Carter Page was “not a source” for the CIA when in fact he was. The alteration was significant in that it paved the way for the FBI to obtain its FISA warrant to initiate surveillance on Page, who was then Donald Trump’s campaign adviser. That was the FBI’s way in to the candidate himself.

Clinesmith is the only individual to date to be charged by John Durham’s investigation into the origins of the Russian-collusion hoax. Yet even he was essentially given a slap on the wrist by Judge Boasberg, a Barack Obama appointee who ridiculously contended, “Mr. Clinesmith has lost his job in government service — what has given his life much meaning.” In other words, the poor guy just made a mistake that has already cost him his job, so we really need to go easy on him.

However, Page addressed the judge and pressed against such simplistic and naïve assumptions, arguing that the damage he had personally suffered, including death threats, were due in part to Clinesmith’s criminal actions. “This manufactured scandal and associated lies caused me to adopt the lifestyle of an international fugitive for years,” Page contended. “I often have felt as if I had been left with no life at all. Each member of my family was severely impacted.”

Judge Boasberg also asserted, “Mr. Clinesmith likely believed that what he said about Mr. Page was true.” This assertion runs counter to the prosecution’s position that Clinesmith held strong animus toward Trump out of which his actions against Page flowed. The prosecution argued that Clinesmith needed to suffer prison time in order to “deter others from committing similar crimes.”

The Wall Street Journal editorial board notes, “Friday’s sentencing will fuel cynicism about two-tiered justice. While George Papadopoulos served time in prison for making false statements to the FBI, and a federal judge refused to drop charges against former national security adviser Michael Flynn after the Justice Department said they had no basis, a top law enforcement official who abused his police powers while operating in secrecy escapes with probation.”

There’s also likely a bit of rear covering at play for Boasberg. The Daily Wire observes, “It should be noted that Judge Boasberg sat on the U.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, the secret court that granted the numerous warrants against Page. He is now the presiding judge of that court.”

Still, the big looming question remains: In exchange for this lightest of sentences, did Clinesmith serve up someone higher up the chain to Durham? If that is indeed the case, then this slap on the wrist of a low-level member of the deep-state cabal may be worth a lot more than it currently appears.

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The Lincoln Project’s Dirty Little Secret

Douglas Andrews

Let’s start with what we know: John Weaver, longtime John McCain campaign strategist and cofounder of the Trump-hating Lincoln Project, is a 61-year-old homosexual child predator.

We know this because he’s admitted to being the former, and because one of the 21 victims of his sexual advances who have so far come forward, Cole Trickle Miele, has credibly accused him of the latter. Miele says he was just 14 when Weaver began contacting him, and not much older when Weaver began asking him whether he was still in high school, telling him he looks “older” and “taller,” and gushing about how much he wanted to “come to Vegas and take you to dinner and drinks and spoil you!!”

Suffice it to say: This is a sickening story about a sick man.

If you want the lurid details of John Weaver’s depravity from a leftist source, Maggie Astor and Danny Hakim of The New York Times have you covered. But the Times published this story just two days ago, whereas a lone journalist named Ryan Gidursky broke the story a full three weeks ago in The American Conservative.

Why, if we didn’t know better, we’d swear the Times was trying to do damage control on behalf of a creepy Trump-hating homosexual.

Interestingly, when we visit The Lincoln Project website, we see not a hint of its cofounder. No “About” page, and certainly no statement about his awful sexual predation on boys less than a third his age. But on Sunday, perhaps knowing that their guy had been outed, the stand-up dudes at The Lincoln Project defenestrated Weaver via tweet: “John Weaver led a secret life that was built on a foundation of deception at every level. He is a predator, a liar, and an abuser. We extend our deepest sympathies to those who were targeted by his deplorable and predatory behavior. We are disgusted and outraged that someone in a position of power and trust would use it for these means.”

The Lincoln boys go on like this for another hand-wringing paragraph. They tell us how they’re “absolutely shocked and sickened by it.” (Here we can’t help but think of Captain Renault in Casablanca: I’m shocked — SHOCKED — to find that homosexual predation is going in in here.) The last sentence of their tweet, though, is quite revealing: “We are grateful beyond words that at no time was John Weaver in the physical presence of any member of The Lincoln Project.” Translation: We know that the cofounder of our Trump-hating enterprise is irredeemably toxic, and we want you to know we’re as grossed out by his child sexual predation as you are.

As the Times article continues, “Lincoln Project leaders, in their first extended comments about Mr. Weaver, said they had not been aware of such allegations until this month, when articles in The American Conservative and Forensic News, and an open letter on Twitter from a data analyst named Garrett Herrin, accused Mr. Weaver of grooming young men online. Steve Schmidt, a co-founder of the group [and MSNBC’s Trump-hating Republican squish], said its leaders had learned last summer from social media posts that Mr. Weaver, who has a wife and two children, might be involved in relationships with men, but emphasized, ‘There was no awareness or insinuations of any type of inappropriate behavior when we became aware of the chatter at the time.’”

Isn’t it amazing how little some people profess to knowing about a guy whom they’ve known and worked with for years? Especially when that guy turns out to be a child sexual predator? And especially when warnings about his deviant behavior have been ignored for perhaps more than two decades?

Weaver apparently hopes that having come out as a homosexual will blunt the outrage. It shouldn’t.

What John Weaver did to these boys and young men is repugnant. May they recover fully, and may he and his enablers be forever shamed by it.

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EXECUTIVE NEWS SUMMARY

Jordan Candler

Government & Politics

  • Friendly fire: Some of Biden’s top economic advisers are pushing back on his stimulus package (Daily Caller)
  • Totally trustworthy: Pennsylvania secretary of state at the center of Trump election concerns resigns for failing to comply with an unrelated state election law (NY Post)
  • Bail fund praised by Kamala Harris has twice freed the same rioter. He was just charged again. (Daily Wire)
  • Transparency! White House asking reporters to share questions in advance of briefings (Examiner)
  • Stacey Abrams (in addition to BLM) nominated for Nobel Peace Prize (The Hill)

Leftmedia

  • New York Times reviews book advocating blowing up pipelines to combat climate change (Daily Signal)

Health

  • White House strikes $230 million deal for at-home coronavirus testing kits (U.S. News)
  • Republicans introduce measure to block Gitmo detainees from being vaccinated before Americans (Daily Wire)
  • Governor Andrew Cuomo loses nine top health officials after downplaying experts (Fox News)
  • Who’d a thunk it? Top epidemiologist says double-masking increases infection risk (Disrn)

Business & Economy

  • CBO sees rapid growth recovery, labor force returning to pre-pandemic level by 2022 (CNBC)
  • Landlords are struggling to make ends meet as CDC extends eviction ban (FEE)
  • “They are playing with our lives”: Locals lash out at Biden canceling Keystone XL (Daily Wire)
  • Dodge warns that regulations are killing the V8 engine (Auto Blog)

Annals of the “Social Justice” Caliphate

  • An Oregon economist could not think of another example of “an area that has so quickly fallen into disfavor” (Willamette Week)

The lowdown: “Portland has gone from one of the most desirable locations in the country just four years ago to near the bottom of an 80-city ranking. That ranking was compiled by the Urban Land Institute in a report titled ‘Emerging Trends in Real Estate 2021.’ It shows that a survey of more than 1,300 lenders, investors, developers and other national real estate experts found Portland the third-most desirable real estate market in the nation in 2017. For 2021, it now ranks 66th of 80 cities on the list.”

  • This woman disembowel the pervasive brainwashing of Critical Race Theory in under 60 seconds (Not the Bee)

Odds & Ends

  • Biden threatens sanctions against Burma following military coup (Daily Caller)
  • Seventy-four percent of American teens and young adults embrace moral relativism (Disrn)
  • SpaceX announces first space flight manned solely by civilians (Examiner)

Stranger Than Fiction

  • Anti-vaxxers won’t stop harassing a Chattanooga nurse they’re convinced is dead (Daily Beast)

Closing Arguments

  • Policy: Why John Kerry’s claim on solar and wind jobs misses the mark (Examiner)
  • Policy: The real greenhouse gas polluter isn’t the U.S.; it’s China (The Federalist)
  • Humor: Wife promises to “circle back” to question about how much she spent at Hobby Lobby (Babylon Bee)

For more of today’s editors’ choice headlines, visit Headline Report.

The Patriot Post is a certified ad-free news service, unlike third-party commercial news sites linked on this page, which may also require a paid subscription.

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VIDEOS

Lincoln Project Cofounder Allegedly Sexually Harassed 21 Young Men — John Weaver allegedly sexually harassed them over the course of many years. The story has reached mainstream media with a whimper.

Why Are Utilities So Expensive? — The cost of producing electricity has dropped significantly in the last decade. So why haven’t electricity bills dropped?

Satire: PETA Says Animals Are Offended — PETA says animals are getting offended and oppressed through speciesist animal insults.

BEST OF RIGHT OPINION

 

 

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

SHORT CUTS

Insight: “You can’t give the government the power to do good without also giving it the power to do bad — in fact, to do anything it wants.” —Harry Browne (1933-2006)

For the record: “When the Obama administration proposed regulations and emissions reduction targets in response to the Paris Agreement, Heritage Foundation economists estimated it would cost the average family of four more than $20,000 in lost income by 2035, an annual average loss of nearly 400,000 jobs and an aggregate GDP loss of over $2.5 trillion. Although the energy landscape has changed since then, Biden’s stringent emissions targets would likely impose similar drastic consequences.” —Kay C. James

Upright: “The U.S. Energy Information Administration recently released a chart showing the latest official data on U.S. energy production sources from the Department of Energy. Some 80% of all our energy comes from oil, gas and coal. Less than 5% comes from wind and solar. … Perhaps over the next several decades, wind and solar power will be cheap enough to meet most of our energy needs. But are we to starve ourselves of energy in the meantime? Are Americans willing to pay $4 or $5 a gallon to fill up the tank with Saudi oil or Russian gas? Wouldn’t it be smarter, safer and, yes, more virtuous to get the energy we need from Texas, Oklahoma, North Dakota or even Alberta, Canada, than from countries that hate us?” —Stephen Moore

Alpha jackass: “The largest threat to U.S. national security are U.S. cops. Not ISIS, not Russian hackers, not anyone or anything else.” —State Department deputy spokesperson Jalina Porter in September 2016

And last… “If you are working on the #KeystonePipeline you can just find another job? Okay. If you are a teacher afraid to teach in person because of #COVID you too can just find another job.” —Kimberly Klacik

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