Do you You Remember…

…when the main stream media went nearly bugeyed shrieking about Melania Trump, Sarah Palin, and for that matter Nancy Reagan and their respective wardrobes?

Of course you do.

And I am just amazed that nobody in the mainstream media seems to find this remotely worth comment. It’s a wardrobe day in the life of the Democrat party is flavor of the month, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez:

Now, I for one don’t necessarily begrudge Socialist Barbie a little fun with her, admittedly, patrician wardrobe choices.

I mean, clearly she made a ton of money off of gratuities working as a bartender.

That must’ve been it, right?

What A Difference Eight Years Makes

2010: Democrats, impatient to pass a 2000 page bill that would nationalize (in effect) a sixth of the United States economy, give Americans the bum’s rush, saying “we will have to pass the bill to see what’s in it”.

2018: Democrats, frantic to stop Donald Trump from empaneling a solid conservative majority on the Supreme Court, claim to have plenty of time to read a purported million pages of documents about Brett Kavanaugh.

Fauxcahontas

The Boston Glob comes to praise Elizabeth Warren’s “Native American ancestry”...

The Boston Globe ran a massive 3,000 word lead article this morning trying to excuse away Elizabeth Warren’s claim during her professional career to be minority and a woman of color based on supposed Native American ancestry.

The story, which had the cooperation of the Warren campaign, comes just days before the first debate in Massachusetts’ Senate race. Clearly, the Warren campaign is worried after even Native Americans who are Democrats criticized Warren at the DNC in Charlotte, and is attempting to put its story out there through a friendly source.

…and ends up burying it.

Too much stuff to pullquote.  Give it a read.

He Who Forgets History…

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Al Franken hasn’t ruled out running for office again.  Why not?  In Minnesota, he’s guaranteed 40% of the vote, from people who reflexively vote Democrat regardless of who’s running.  And Name Identification will get him another 5% from the Undecided-Uninformed crowd who look at the ballot and say: “Oh yeah, I’ve heard of him.”  A couple more boxes of ballots from the trunk of the car and he’s back in office.

 

It’s sad, really.  The American political system was intended for citizen-legislators to briefly meet to handle problems, then resume their daily lives.  Professional politicians have no daily lives.  When they’re forced out of office, they’re like those 70’s bands that routinely filled the stadium in their heyday but now hope to get booked at the Medina Ballroom.

Joe Doakes

Watching the Attorney General primary on the GOP side – where perennial candidate and, er, colorful personality Sharon Anderson, who is not the former Channel 5 personality got over 30% of the vote – I hate to say, this isn’t just a Democrat phenomenon.

Although with Sharon Anderson it’s a laughing matter.  With Stuart…

.

 

The Racket Strikes Back

A friend of the blog writes:

It used to be people would go out for a night of fun and one person would have to be the designated driver. A majority didn’t even think to use cabs and public transit would often not run regularly enough at bar close.

Now that we have Uber and Lyft, I have heard many, many stories of people using those services when going out. I know some people who no longer drive under the influence because of the affordability of Uber.

So, of course, when people get real options that are reliable and affordable, those in the government who think their jobs are as social engineers have a problem.

Of interest locally, I found this link through a Tweet that declared Minneapolis/St Paul should consider this next. Why?

They can try to limit all they want, but there will still be people in cars and ride sharing will still happen. For example, the other day, I was approached by a man on the street who was trying to start his own ride share business, offering lower rates than Uber by about $2. I also have the number of a taxi driver who moonlights as a personal driver for those of us with his business card. He pretty much places himself on call for us.

So, yes, there will be options, which makes it even more aggravating that city governments get involved in private business that actually works for the people.

In a system built on rent-seeking, people will seek rent.

And for the government permission racket to survive, it’s gotta deliver the rent.

Off Script

Minnesota Democrats and the media that work for them will be and to some on natural angles to justify the behavior of Democrat politicians – especially virtue signal sponges like Keith “Thumper” Ellison.

But once in a while, you get surprised:

If the allegations are true, Keith Ellison has no right to serve as the state’s chief legal officer. And he had no right to run under false pretenses, as a man standing wrongly accused. Voters had only his word on that claim, and the investigation is ongoing.

In the meantime, Keith Ellison must withdraw from the race and not put Minnesotans through another cycle of political scandal. They’ve been through enough.

It’s very simple. We believe survivors.

Politics doesn’t matter. We believe survivors.

Keith Ellison says he wants to protect women from domestic violence and sexual assault. That starts by believing survivors.

As a matter of fact, I believe that people are innocent until proven guilty.

Given that representative Allison as often supported policy is (especially on domestic violence and gun control) that repudiate that idea, I don’t feel a lot of sympathy for him.

Orwell Was A Pollyanna

Ben Shapiro challenged prog flavor of the month Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez to a debate – something she’s never had in her “political career”.

Now, there’s no requirement that a pol debate anyone, ever – even their opponents for office, much less pundits.   Of course, it can be used against you – not that it matters in a one-party town like Ocasio-Cortez’ district.

And there are so many ways to decline a debate request like this:

  • “Sorry – I’m getting ready for a general election (coronation?), and I’m too busy”.
  • “Debating you will be of no consequence to serving (koff koff) my constituents and my district.  Why would either of us waste our time?”
  • “I’ve got drapes to measure that evening”
  • “I gotta wash my hair”.
  • Or the old reliable “<silence>”.

That’s not what Ocasio-Cortez did, though:

Asking for a debate is “like catcalling” – sexist, intrusive, unwanted, arrogant.

A response that is, itself, sexist and arrogant, and a sign of a mind that can think on no other plane than the politics of identity and outrage.

Congratuations, New York.  You got another winner here.  (Not that Minnesota has anything to brag about, since the equally risible Alondra Cano  Alondra Cano, Ray Dehn and Keith Ellison remain in office).

SIDE NOTE:   Remember when the same people who are raving about Ocasio-Cortez today were calling Sarah Palin  an ignorant dumbass?

This is the sound of “the bar” in freefall.

Monday Morning Cop

DFL-endrosed gubernatorial candidate Erin Murphy commented on the Thurman Blevins shooting on Facebook.

Other-peoples-money quote:

He ran, yes. He was armed, yes. He reportedly was drunk and had fired shots, yes. All of those things might have led to his death, but none of them had to. I don’t understand why calmly starting a conversation wasn’t an option or wouldn’t have been a better course.

There is something about the whole “Shots Fired” thing that tends to make cops a little edgy.  Also everyone else – provided they’re in the real world, and not on Facebook, opining for a tame, partisan crowd.

(And am I the only one thinking “so why isn’t ‘starting a calm conversation with gun owners, rather than advocating confiscations and wholesale crushing of civil liberties, not an option for you, Miss

Just a few days ago in South St. Paul a mentally ill man was reported to be threatening people at a group home. Officers arrived and engaged with the man. He too had a gun, he actually fired it at and shot the officers, injuring two of them. They subdued him not with a hail of bullets but with other tools, their words, their determination to find a better solution. Those officers— Todd Waters, Derek Kruse, Dennis Brom and Julie Bishop, are heroes who found humanity in what must have been the worst and scariest situation in their lives.

The message?   Cops should be willing to get shot first, then ask questions.

Is there a conversation to be had about use of police force?   About the limits or shape of qualified immunity?  Absolutely.

Is Erin Murphy the one to be lecturing the cops about it?

I don’t know much about Thurman Blevins. Had the officers approached the situation differently he might be in jail right now for firing his weapon into the sky and ground, or could be sitting on that curb with his family enjoying a morning off. I don’t know.

I’m no cop fanboy – but this may be the dumbest bunch of monday-morning quarterbacking I’ve ever seen.

Do You Remember

Remember when the media was crawling over every square foot of wind-ravaged Puerto Rican soil looking for examples of Trump administration incompetence and corruption, making a hero out of San Juan’s idiot Democrat mayor in the process, if only briefly?

Where is the media now?

A mayor and two former government officials in Puerto Rico face public corruption charges in separate cases that involve a total of $8 million in federal and local funds, authorities said Thursday. The suspects are the mayor of the southwest town of Sabana Grande and the former directors of finance for the northern town of Toa Baja, which has struggled to pay its employees amid an 11-year recession.

U.S. Attorney Rosa Emilia Rodriguez told reporters that the former officials from Toa Baja are accused of using nearly $5 million worth of federal funds to pay the town’s public employees and municipal contractors.

“Not only is that illegal, it’s immoral,” she said.

Puerto Rico – aka “A Warm Minneapolis” – would be considered a “Failed State” if it weren’t a US territory.

But unless the “news” can “denormalize” Trump, they really don’t care.

It’s Almost, But Not Quite, A Berg’s Law

It probably doesn’t qualify as a “Berg’s Law” because it may not be absolute and universal – but for the most part, if you scratch the surface of an American “Democratic Socialist”, you’ll find a rich kid with daddy issues.

So, it seems, with current socialist wunderkind Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.  Last week’s big primary winner in a Congressional district that includes parts of the Bronx and Queens highlighted the 29 year old “community organizer”, who will likely be going to Congress, and her “Jenny from the Block” story.  Listening to her before the election, I caught myself humming “It’s A Hard Knock Life” more than a few times.

So was it baked wind?

What do you think?  Remember – it’s almost a Berg’s Law:

Around the age of five, Alexandria’s architect father Sergio Ocasio moved the family from the “planned community” of Parkchester in the Bronx to a home in Yorktown Heights, a wealthy suburb in Westchester County. The New York Times describes her childhood home as “a modest two-bedroom house on a quiet street.” In a 1999 profile of the area, when Ocasio-Cortez would have been ten years old, the Times lauded Yorktown Heights’ “diversity of housing in a scenic setting” – complete with two golf courses.

Westchester County – which the Washington Post, in a glowing profile on Ocasio-Cortez, describes as only “middle class” – ranks #8 in the nation for the counties with the “highest average incomes among the wealthiest one percent of residents.” According to the Economic Policy Institute, the county’s average annual income of the top one percent is a staggering $4,326,049.

Yorktown Heights, specifically, offers a sharp contrast from Bronx living. According to USA.com, the town’s population is 81 percent white, and median household income is $96,413 – nearly double the average for both New York state and the nation, according to data from 2010-2014.

I interviewed for a job in Westchester County thirty years ago; the program director basically told me there was no way I could live in the area on what they could payme (here was the story).

Not that there’s anything wrong with doing well; but not only didn’t Ocasio-Cortez earn it, she wants to make it harder for others to do it.

(Even as she, beyond a doubt, gets ready to make a couple million in honoraria from liberals with deep pockets over the next few years, much like the Bern she no doubt felt).

Open Letter To Tim Walz

To:  Represenative Tim Walz
From:  Mitch Berg, Ornery Peasant
Re:  Sell Sell Sell

Rep. Walz,

You’re running in a primary this fall against a dog’s breakfast of people who, notwithstanding your attempt to re-paint yourself as a “progressive”, are far, far to your left.

To your credit, you’ve taken that “re-painting” pretty seriously:

Rep. Walz, burning whatever cred he may have had with gun owners by french-kissing “Moms Want Action” in 2016.

But your fellow DFLers prefer their “Democratic Socialism” neat.  No ice.

And apparently, with a little communist chaser.

For years, I’ve heard my Democrat friends chanting “Ronald Reagan wouldn’t get endorsed by today’s GOP” – with the premise being Reagan was “too centrist” for today’s GOP . It’s a perfectly plausible claim, if you have no idea about the history of the GOP; go and google “A Time For Choosing”, the full hour-long speech, if you need proof; it’d fit in at any Tea Party meeting in the past decade. If anything, Reagan would still scare the DC establishment; George Will was deeply unhappy with Reagan’s performance, and we know what George has been up to lately.

So no – Reagan would *not* have trouble in today’s GOP, or at least the part of the party that swept the elections in 2010 and 2014.

But Paul Wellstone and Hubert Humphrey would get laughed out of today’s Democratic Party. Of that, there can be no doubt.

That is all.

This Is Today’s DFL

Ilhan Omar – DFL endorsed candidate for Congress in the 5th CD – is a raving anti-semite.

State representative Ilhan Omar has yet to complete her first term in the Minnesota legislature, where she has accomplished approximately nothing of substance, though she has now secured the DFL endorsement to succeed Minnesota Fifth District Rep. Keith Ellison in Congress. In the brief Weekly Standard article “The anti-Israel seat,” I conclude with observations related to Omar’s frank hatred of Israel. She doesn’t sugarcoat it. She calls Israel an “apartheid regime.”

That is a defamatory falsehood with a shabby provenance. In Omar’s case, it is something more than an impulsive comment in a recent tweet. It represents her considered judgment. One can see it at work in her remarks on the floor of the Minnesota House in opposition to a bill (HF 400) opposing the boycott of Israel promoted by so-called BDS groups harking back to the “Zionism is racism” lie of the 1970’s.

And it’s fascinating how local media treats Omar’s anti-semitiem; exactly the same way as they treated her dubious family history.

It makes sense; their editors and producers know they’ll never get another invite to the Oceannarie if they do.

More, Faster!

The Southern Poverty Law Center loses a $3 million defamation suit:

The Southern Poverty Law Center, which monitors hate groups, has apologized for including the Quilliam Foundation, a counter-extremism group, and its founder, Maajid Nawaz, in its Field Guide to Anti-Muslim Extremists. “Mr. Nawaz and Quilliam have made valuable and important contributions to public discourse, including by promoting pluralism and condemning both anti-Muslim bigotry and Islamist extremism,” the SPLC wrote in a statement. The SPLC will also pay a $3.375 million settlement to Quilliam that will be used to fight “anti-Muslim bigotry and Islamist extremism,” according to a Quilliam press release.

But…what made the SPLC refer to them as a “hate group?”

“We were able to fight back against the Regressive Left and show them that moderate Muslims will not be silenced,” Nawaz said in the release.

Aaaah.  It all makes sense now.

The Wrong Lesson?

So why did Trump win the ’16 election?

Was it the Democrat party’s rocket-ride to the extreme left?

The “Elite” condescension toward the great American geographic, political and economic middle?

Donald Trump’s facility at seeing the above and appealing to people to whom it mattered?

Or was it simple crass vulgarity?

Wisconsin Democrats are picking “D”:

Democrats are convinced that Wisconsin is primed for a Trump-backlash-inspired “blue wave” come November, and potential Walker challengers have joined the race in droves. With so many bodies in the race, a fringe candidate could conceivably win the primary with 15 to 20 percent of the vote and move on to face the vulnerable Republican incumbent in November. And just as Candidate Trump used vulgarity, insults, and half-cooked media stunts to differentiate himself from his primary opponents two years ago, so, too, are Walker’s Democratic challengers in 2018.

And they are quite the cast of himbos:

Mike McCabe, a former “good government” activist who suggested he would rent the governor’s mansion out to travelers on Airbnb, began his campaign by promising to end Walker’s “golden-shower economics.” Businessman Andy Gronik, who received a settlement of more than $6 million in a lawsuit he filed claiming a house he had purchased had given him an inflammatory-bowel disorder, told a debate crowd that he couldn’t wait to “hit” Walker. And on the same rainy day Mahlon Mitchell dropped his scatological stylings on the transportation group, state school superintendent Tony Evers joined a group in Madison protesting cuts to the state’s university system and told the group Walker’s cuts were “bullsh**.”

And just watch – if they win, “being crude, crass and impolitic” will suddenly become a virtue among Dems.

If there is a favorite in the Democratic field, it is Evers, a buttoned-up 65-year-old former teacher who has won three statewide elections as school superintendent. Nearly a decade ago, Evers beat cancer after having his esophagus and part of his stomach removed; today, he can’t eat a full meal and has to sleep at a 45 degree angle. However, even though the avuncular Evers has appeared on three statewide ballots, he is still relatively unknown in areas outside heavily liberal Madison. One recent poll had Evers leading the primary field with a flaccid 20 percent, which may explain his sudden foray into campaigning’s dark arts. In one January interview, he referred to Walker as an “idiot,” and he recently told the state Democratic convention that he was “goddamn sick and tired” of Walker’s policies.

And just when you thought nothing could be…loonier than this past DFL convention..

Peasants: Your Overlords Grant You Clemency!

StPaul residence now have until Friday to pick a trash cart…

… to replace the perfectly good trash buckets they had from the perfectly good trash haulers that, in many cases, they’ve been happily using for years. (Like my own trash hauler of this past decade, Highland Sanitation; if you live in their service area, they come highly recommended).

And if you are a low income or fixed income person who has been extemporizing by sharing a bucket contract with another neighbor?

Shush, present, and be happy to pay for your bureaucrats pensions!:

“Each unit does need to have its own cart and service,” \said Lisa Hiebert, a spokeswoman for St. Paul Public Works. “If they’re in a multi-unit building, or they’re sharing, there is no opt-out option

Of course it’s not an option. This is serious business.

And by serious business, I mean “this is a featherbedded contract to generate more city employees, meaning more public sector union dues, meaning more contributions to the Saint Paul DFL.

So with those stakes in mind, you will get exactly the options you are given, peasants!

My Weekend In Duluth, Watching The Weekend In Rochester

This past weekend was all about political conventions; for the first time in a long, long time,

The Gales Of November Came…In Spring:   When I left Saint Paul on Friday morning, it was up around 80 degrees.  When I got to Duluth two hours later, it was 47 with a wind howling off the lake.

But the cold on the first day of June was just about the only surprise.   Every one of the front runners – Jeff Johnson for Governor, Karin Housley and Jim Newberger for Senate – got the endorsement.

It wasn’t completely uneventful, of course.  All weekend, there were rumors that the Pawlenty campaign had voting shenanigans afoot – getting his delegates to vote No Endorsement, and then flip to Parrish.  There were signs early – the first ballot showed 7% “No Endorsement”.  That faded to 2% by the second ballot.

More surprising was Mary Giuliani Stevens’ showing.  The Woodbury mayor had a large, enthusiastic showing on the floor.  Scuttlebutt had it that if Johnson didn’t win on the first ballot, there’d be a huge Giuliani Stevens surge.   It didn’t pan out – Johnson won the first ballot 45/26 (with 20 going to Parrish), and extended his lead to 50/25/16 on the second ballot.  Dock a point from the rumor mill.

So given that the whole thing is going to a primary with Pawlenty, it’s probably just as well we didn’t waste a lot of effort on convention dramatics.

Especially since the other convention was providing plenty of that.

Crazy In Clinic Town:   We knew it was going to be a doozie when we read Rep. Jamie Becker Finn’s endorsement statement for Tim Walz:

With a sendoff like that, what could go wrong?

The first signs that the crazy train had pulled into the station came early in the afternoon Saturday, when the first ballot came in in the DFL Attorney General race.  Lori Swanson won the ballot – by four points, 52/48, over left-wing extremist Matt Pelikan.  Then, reportedly, Pelikan spoke to the delegates, telling them that Swanson had an “A” rating from the NRA (for all of Swanson’s liberal interventionism, she has always been solid on 2nd Amendment rights).  She reportedly dropped out of the endorsement race, leaving Pelikan to get endorsed by acclamation.

Rebecca Otto – one of the most disagreeable people in Minnesota politics – went out early, after one ballot, with 18 paltry percent.  The conversation in the press pit turned to What IT All Meant for the DFL Governor endorsement.  The conventional wisdom had been calling for a Tim Walz win, early and fast.

But after six ballots, extremist Saint Paul prog legislator Erin Murphy was pulling ahead.  After six ballots, not wanting to fight against the endorsement, Otto and Walz came out on the floor, urging a “No Endorsement” vote.  But Murphy was not to be denied.   She took the endorsement after, I forget, six or seven ballots.

And so two vital DFL seats were decided, in large part, because of current or former stances on the Second Amendment.   Let’s put a pin in that.

But we’re not done yet.

Upshot;  The DFL convention continued until Sunday – when Murphy made her big announcement; her running mate was…

…Erin Maye Quade.  A left wing extremist, whose wife is a paid organizer for Michael Bloomberg.

So the message from the DFL convention: “Don’t be silly, nobody’s coming for your guns. But we’re coming for your guns”.

DFL endorsed gubernatorial candidate Erin Murphy has never minced words about her antipathy toward civilian gun owners; her platform is a dog’s breakfast of every terrible, ineffective bit of security theater that *can not* affect crime rates *or* mass shootings. And Erin Maye Quade’s wife is a paid “Everytown” employee. Long on snark, short on reasoning, Maye Quade never saw any pointless theatrics she didn’t like.

And long-time DFL Attorney General Lori Swanson lost the DFL’s endorsement, almost like flipping a light switch, when challenger (and extreme gun grabber) Matthew Pelikan mentioned that, as liberal as Swanson is on every other issue, she’s a solid defender of the law-abiding citizen’s right to keep and bear arms. And Tim Walz lost what had been considered a sure-fire endorsement in large part because he *used to be* a strong 2nd Amendment supporter (before throwing Minnesota’s law-abiding gun owners under the bus to unsuccessfully woo the increasingly extremist DFL delegate base; even that wasn’t enough to save the endorsement.

The DFL reflects a base that is more afraid of law-abiding citizens than they are of society’s actual problems. Don’t take my word for it; look at their endorsements.

Every last one of them.

I’m Gonna Tear Your Echo Chamber Down

A court has ruled that President Trump violated the First Amendment by blocking his critics on Twitter.

Last July, the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University filed a lawsuit in the Southern District of New York on behalf of seven individuals arguing that blocking users on the @realDonaldTrump account who disagreed with the president’s policies violated freedom of speech.

The blocked plaintiffs are Maryland professor Philip Cohen, Tennessee Dr. Eugene Gu, Seattle songwriter Holly Figueroa, New York comedy writer Nicholas Pappas, Pittsburgh author Joseph Papp, D.C. legal analyst Rebecca Buckwalter-Poza, and Houston police officer Brandon Neely.

“When I found out the president blocked me, it felt as though my opinion didn’t matter,” Neely said last year. “After devoting five years of my life to serving this country, the president — who is supposed to represent the views of all Americans — did not care what I had to say.”

I say bravo, Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald.   Elected officials should have keep their social media open to everyone that pays their salary.

I’m looking at you, all you DFL reps that blocked me – most of them without having ever engaged with me.

More to come.

Berg’s Seventh Law: On The Cusp Of Immortality?

I was thinking the other day – if it turns out that, after almost two years of Democrats claiming that Donald Trump colluded with the Russians it turns out that the Democrats were the ones who actually colluded with Putin?

It’d mean that Berg’s Seventh Law is not only an inviolable law of human political behavior, but in fact one of the core truths about the American political system today.