A Bullish Wind

The President’s party always loses seats in the midterms.

Trump is a polarizing figure who will drive Democrat turnout like nothing since Obama’s first election.

The GOP is doomed, and Triump will be a lame duck starting in January.

We’ve all heard it.  Truth be told, while I think the GOP has a great chance to pick up congressional seats in Minnesota this fall, I  – as naturally pessimistic as any other Scandinavian-American and urban Conservative – have been mentally buckling myself in for a brutal, 2006-like night on election night.

Much as I was about this time two years ago.

We know how that went.

And while I don’t get sanguine over much of anything, Conrad Black says there’s room for hope in the wake of the Democrats’ Kavenaugh show trial and Trump’s canny, intensive campaigning:

Just as he calculated that by speaking for all those who despised the entire incumbent political system he could win the Republican nomination, and that he could win by designing a campaign to exploit the possibilities of gaining a majority in the Electoral College rather than the popular vote (as five of his predecessors did, by design or otherwise), he is now exploiting the fact that there is no leader of the opposition in the American system, and between presidential elections he has no rival. The likely outcome is the most favorable midterm result since Franklin D. Roosevelt won nine additional congressional districts and gained nine senators in 1934. Even now, though the bunk about impeachment has subsided, Trump’s enemies have little idea of how profoundly hated the OBushinton era, 1989 to 2017, had become, as a time of sleaze and incompetence and stagnation. Now, in what is practically a full-employment economy, wages for the least well-paid are rising. Amazon and other retailers grumble about $15 an hour for unskilled work, but it is the first time people in that economic bracket have had real increases of purchasing power and the lack of fear of joblessness in more than 20 years.

Time will tell — and not much time, as luck would have it.

Long Term Plans

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Why the vicious fight over the Kavanaugh nomination? Because there’s so much at stake.

When the Constitution was written, the Supreme Court did not have the power to declare acts of Congress unconstitutional. The Court grabbed that power in Marbury v. Madison, 1803.

For the first hundred years, everyone assumed the Supreme Court would interpret the Constitution according to the original intent of the people who wrote it. If the public didn’t like what the original Constitution said, they could amend the Constitution as they did after the Civil War. The Equal Protection and Due Process clauses of the 14th Amendment extended the constitutional limitations on federal government action to state governments.

Starting in 1912, Woodrow Wilson promoted the idea that government must grow and develop, must evolve with the times but without Constitutional limitations and without going through the cumbersome formal Constitutional amendment process. The idea caught on with judges who liked the thought of being the ultimate guardians of good sense and civic virtue, a check on excesses of state legislatures, philosopher-kings. That’s how we got abortion-on-demand and gay marriage: Supreme Court justices decided the time was ripe for those new ‘rights’ to be discovered and imposed nation-wide. The four Liberal justices on the court are committed to this method of Constitutional interpretation. Whatever is popular today, is the law.

Kavanaugh follows the Original Intent method which, indeed, is the standard applied to every document in every lawsuit by every court except the Liberal justices. If your mortgage company wants to double your interest rate, the case will turn on what was intended in the original documents – fixed rate or adjustable rate – regardless of the economic conditions at the time of the lawsuit.

Applying Original Intent to the Constitution, ask yourself this: what do you think the Founding Fathers would have thought of homosexual marriage? Of women wanting to abort their unborn children? Would the Founders have considered these as fundamental rights like the right to choose your own religion, the right to speak up about politics, the right to a trial by jury? I don’t think so.

And what would the Founders have thought about the right of ordinary citizens to carry firearms to protect themselves at home, on the roads, and against a tyrannical government? Remember, the Founders weren’t always the graceful statutes and paintings you see in museums, they were the people who planned and carried out a revolution to overthrow their own government. I suspect they thought the people’s right to own military-grade weapons was essential to protecting the rest of the people’s rights from encroachment by the government.

That’s what’s at stake in this confirmation. Kavanaugh will be the fifth Original Intent seat on the Court. He’ll give the traditional, conservative method a majority. Roe v. Wade is at risk of being overturned, as it should be, being entirely made up law with no historical support at all. And Obergefell v. Hodges is such a perversion that Justice Kennedy should hide his head in a bag.

That’s why Democrats are being savage. They see their path to subverting the nation blocked. They can’t win at the polls if they declare their goals honestly, they can’t win in the courts with Kavanaugh on the bench, the next step in fomenting revolution is violence. Assassination is not out of the question. Whoever provides security for Republicans in Washington should double their details.

That last bit seems like it’s more and more likely ever week.

A Thorough Investigation

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

The Senate Judiciary Committee should subpoena Keith Ellison.  He says both women accusing him of sexual assault are lying.
Based on the testimony of our esteemed colleague in the House, the Senate Judiciary Committee can make a finding that women do, in fact, lie about sexual assault. So we don’t have to take the woman’s word for it.
Therefore, we can examine these claims against Judge Kavanaugh dispassionately, with a look toward evidence rather than automatic acceptance, since we know official Democratic Party policy is that women lie about sexual assault.

And having done our thorough investigation can we conclude this witness is also lying, just like the women are lying against Keith Ellison, and therefore there’s no obstacle to confirming Judge Kavanaugh.
We confidently expect every Democrat member of this committee to reject the lies and join us in recommending the Senate confirm him.
Joe doakes
Heh.

Open Letter To The Entire US Senate GOP Caucus

To:  Entire US Senate GOP Caucus
From:  Mitch Berg, Cranky Peasant
Re:  A Big Lie

Senators,

Confirm Brett Kavanaugh.  Now.

The allegations against him are of a piece with nearly every leftist narrative today – utter crap.  It’s transparent BS.  Like most lefty memes – “gun violence”, the “War on Women”, the $15 minimum wage and on and on, it is largely a set of chanting points that aren’t intended to convince the intelligent.  They are intended solely to leverage the tribalist ignorance of the masses of entitled would-be elitists who make up Big Left’s voting bloc; they don’t fact check jack; they hear things on the media, and the left’s alt-media, and parrot it like the obedient little schnauzers most of them are.

Confirm Brett Kavanaugh.  Now.

Nothing reinforces a tactic like success.  If Big Left manages to scuttle Kavanaugh, you can expect every single conservative – I almost added “male” to the list, but as we saw with Sarah Palin and MIchele Bachmann, the left hates conservative women even more – will meet the same scabrous, defamatory treatment.

Every one.

Confirm Kavanaugh.  Now.

And if Big Left tries to call out the schnauzers of “The #Resistance”, then yes, let’s meet them – in court if they choose wisely, at the barricades if they don’t.

But confirm Kavanaugh.  Now.

If you fail to do this, you will get brutalized this November.

And you will have it coming.

Confirm Kavanaugh.  Now.

Justice: Not For Deplorable Dregs

Would anyone in the media be paying attention to Christine Blasey Ford if she wasn’t an academic, reporter, or other “Elite?”

I’m overhearing the television, so I’m not going to link to anything, but I keep hearing the indicia of elite status — notably, that Blasey is a college professor.

I’m trying to think of how her allegations should be handled, and I want like cases to be treated alike. When will one allegation from long ago justify delaying the Senate confirmation process and the opening of new investigations?

The answer cannot be: when the accuser has elite status!

I’m thinking of how Paula Jones was denigrated 20 years ago. “If you drag a hundred-dollar bill through a trailer park, you never know what you’ll find,” James Carville said famously.

It’s never been about making women safer, or justice. It’s about power.

 

I Seem To Have Recovered A Memory

This is difficult for me, so please bear with me.

It was in 1988.   I was at a party at a duplex at, I think, Franklin and Pleasant in Minneapolis.

I was there with a woman, a friend of mine.  We’d been drinking.

A lot.

Suddenly, and without warning, Dianne Feinstein, Patrick Leahy, Dick Durbin, Sheldon Whitehouse, Amy Klobuchar, Al Franken, Chris Coons, Richard Blumenthal, Mazie Hirono, Cory Booker and Kamala Harris walked into the room and grabbed her butt.  Each of them, in order.

Yes, it looked strange, but it was Minneapolis in the ’80s.  Anything could happen.  Or that’s how I remember it.

My friend was really hammered, so she didn’t really react as 10 future Democrat members of the Senate Judiciary committee (and one future former member) grabbed her in an act that is considered Sexual Assault when committed by anyone but Bill Clinton.

It’s a memory I recovered, coincidentally, only yesterday, after three decades of aggressive therapy.  But I believe accusers, even accusers I haven’t seen in three decades.

I won’t diviulge my friend’s name, but her father was a guy from Newark, New Jersey, named “T-Bone”, as I recall.

Deplorable

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Assume Christine Ford’s accusation against Brett Kavanaugh is true. 35 years ago, as a teenager, he did something stupid. What does that tell us about his present fitness to sit on the Supreme Court?
It shows a disturbing lack of mature judgment.  Duh, teenager.

It shows a troubling tendency toward offensive behavior fueled by alcohol and testosterone.  Duh, male teenager.

It shows a self-centered attitude, insensitive to the effect of his behavior on others around him, particularly people of the opposite sex.  Duh, every teenager.

Even if it’s true that teenaged Brett Kavanaugh went to a party, got drunk, and acted badly with a girl, what does that tell us about his present fitness to rule on the penumbra of rights emanating from the Constitution, the President’s power to enforce border security, or the standard of scrutiny to apply to Second Amendment claims and whether it’s different from First Amendment claims?

In other words, what difference, at this point, does it make?

Joe Doakes

And that’s even if Dr. Ford’s “recovered” recollections weren’t altered by later trauma or even therapy.

Hardball

The Senate GOP reportedly plans to “play hardball” in getting Brett Kavanaugh confirmed, possibly this week:

Strategists advising Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh plan to use aggressive tactics this week in response to the public accusation of a “stumbling drunk” sexual assault in high school that instantly imperiled his confirmation, top sources tell Jonathan Swan:

• Some involved in the process are going to urge Senate leaders to call on the accuser — Christine Blasey Ford, who went on the record with The Washington Post’s Emma Brown — to testify publicly this week, ahead of Thursday’s scheduled Judiciary Committee vote. This gambit basically bets that she will decline, and Republicans can then say that they tried to investigate further.

• A source close to the process said that if Democrats sink Kavanaugh “we’ll just bring in someone more conservative.”

I hope they do. Not only has Kavanaugh denied the charges, but apparently the other student home Ford said was present, and who supposedly broke up the attack, claimed the episode never happened.

The other hand – isn’t it refreshing, seeing Democrats actually taking “sexual harassment” seriously?

I’m sure Keith Ellison is sweating bullets at the prospect (or would, if the American Left ever behaved in a morally consistent manner)

Game Of Ids

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

A colleague is worried that confirming Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court will make it too Catholic, too Harvard, too Elite.  The justices won’t understand what the people want, won’t deliver rulings to their expectations, the public won’t accept them.  We need a more diverse court, one more in touch with common people, to better understand their concerns.

I dunno – we have a Wise Latina, a Lesbian, a Black, a Jew, a Protestant and some Catholics.  We have men and women, old and young.  We have legal scholars who delve deep into the history of the nation to divine the intent of the Founders, and people who march in lock-step with the prevailing Liberal orthodoxy of the day.  I think we’re doing okay, diversity-wise.  Trump should get to put whoever he wants on the court.  Elections have consequences, remember?

I’d be a lot more sympathetic if I believed the concern would be as strong were a white male Catholic Harvard-educated Liberal to be nominated.  Somehow, I suspect the argument would be exactly reversed: we need the best and brightest on the court, wise philosopher-kings to tell us what the law ought to be, not a bunch of grubby middlemen haggling for their special interest groups.

SCOTUS nomination fights expose the id of both parties.

I like our id better than their id, to be honest.

But then, that’s one of the reasons I foresook liberalism in the first place.

Shall Not Be Infringed

A three judge panel of a Federal Circuit court – not just any federal circuit, but the Ninthhas ruled that the 2nd Amendment applies to law-abiding citizens carrying firearms for self-defense in public, and has reversed a Hawaii federal district court ruling clamping pre-Heller-style restrictions on citizens in Hawaii:

The ruling issued by a three-judge panel on the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, based in San Francisco, came a year after the U.S. Supreme Court declined to rule either way on the carrying of guns in public.

Two of the three 9th Circuit judges voted to reverse a decision by the U.S. District Court in Hawaii that state officials did not infringe on the rights of George Young, the plaintiff, in twice denying him a permit to carry a gun outside.

“We do not take lightly the problem of gun violence,” Judge Diarmuid O’Scannlain wrote in Tuesday’s ruling. “But, for better or for worse, the Second Amendment does protect a right to carry a firearm in public for self-defense.”

Kavanaugh can’t get on the bench soon enough.

Kavanaugh Bingo

As the left rapidly screams itself into an aneurysm over the choice of Judge Kavanaugh, It’s time to break out that all of Northern Alliance tradition; SCOTUS bingo!

If you don’t have “blackout” by 10 AM, you’re probably not watching, reading or surfing anything…

UPDATE: Will need a ruling on this – does it count towards Jusge Kavanaugh’s card if his attacker, well, skipped something…?

It’s going to be an interesting summer, and the classic Hindi sense of the term.

“All Hell Is About To Break Loose”

Reason’s Damon Root on the Kennedy retirement:

That influence came with a certain price. Over the years, Kennedy has been denounced by every major faction in American politics. In conservative circles, for example, he has been keelhauled as a reckless judicial activist who “invented” a right to gay marriage. Liberals, meanwhile, have burned him in effigy as the unwitting mouthpiece for corporate oligarchs thanks to his majority opinion in the Citizens United case. And among libertarians, Kennedy has been damned as the fair-weather federalist who torpedoed the rights of local medical marijuana users in favor of a federal drug control scheme. Libertarians will also point out that Kennedy joined the majority opinion that unleashed the forces of eminent domain abuse in Kelo v. City of New London (2005).

To say the least, Kennedy’s jurisprudence defies easy categorization. Legal scholars will be arguing about it for a long time to come….In short, thanks to Kennedy’s retirement, all hell is about to break loose.

And the media is already counting the receipts.

 

I Hate To Indulge In Schadenfreude

But when it comes to our spoiled, entitled left’s whining, whinging, childish mewling over the retirement of Anthony Kennedy – the worst I’ve heard since election night?

Well…

…the more I read…

…and the harder I laugh…

…not to mention their selective grasp of reality…

…Well, I have to say…

I was wrong.  I do love schadenfreude.  

Kennedy Heads To Shady Acres

From NBC:

Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy will retire from the highest U.S. court, giving President Donald Trump another chance to fundamentally reshape the top of the judiciary.

Anthony Kennedy is retiring.

  1. This is yuge.
  2. The culture war is about to get a *lot* hotter.
  3. While I’ve been a Trump non-fan for thirty years, I said before the 2016 election that if he nominated *one* good conservative SCOTUS justice, his time in office would be well spent. He’s got a shot at two, now. Little as I care for Trump, I might actually start getting just a little tired of winning after all. But I’ll get my second wind, fear not.

    Barring a Democrat sweep of the Presidency and Senate in 2020, Ruth Bader Ginsburg is going to die sitting in her seat. And given the influence of Chicago democrats on capital hill, perhaps even beyond.

Masterpiece:  Good News, Bad News

Conservatives were excited yesterday over the Masterpiece Cake Shop ruling – and understandably so; Big Left has been on a mission to curtail religious freedom (not to mention undermine the church) as long as I can remember.

Gail Heriot, writing at Instapundit, reminds us  there’s good news and there’s bad news

On the one hand, I’m sure it’s not comforting for the owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop to think that the Colorado Civil Rights Commission might have won if its members had only disguised their contempt for people of faith a bit better. On the other hand, as my colleague Maimon Schwarzschild has written in “Do Religious Exemptions Save?,” the alternative—a Constitutionally-mandated duty to accommodate religion—may not work so well either.

The only real answer is a culture that actually embraces actual tolerance – which is something Big Left has been working overtime to extinguish at our universities and in our schools.

Rational Basis Conclusion

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

The Supreme Court declared the right to keep and bear arms is a fundamental right.  But we all know fundamental rights can be infringed (can’t yell fire in a crowded theater).  The question is: what’s the test to decide whether a government regulation affecting a fundamental right is valid or void?

The Illinois city ordinance banning ‘assault rifles’ is staking out a “rational basis” test.  If the regulation is rationally related to a legitimate government purpose, it stands.  That’s the test we use for zoning ordinances, or speed limits.  That’s the least protective of citizens’ rights.

In contrast, the test for freedom of speech is “strict scrutiny,” which is a much harder test for the government to pass.  That’s why a crucifix in urine, nude dancing, flag burning and Citizens United’s right to show a film critical of Hillary Clinton are all protected by the First Amendment.

These tests are all made-up rules adopted by the Supreme Court, which hasn’t stated the test it will apply to gun rights cases.  It’s absolutely critical Second Amendment supporters keep the pressure on politicians and the courts to make certain the right to defend yourself with arms is as vigorously protected as the right to defend yourself with words.

Joe Doakes

The good guys have been on a fifteen year winning streak.  Some have gotten complacent.

It’s time to change that.

Pandora’s Box

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Hmmm, so according to Mr. Justice Stevens, the Supreme Court is capable of getting a decision wrong, as it did in the case he dissented from. I wonder what other cases also were wrongly decided and therefore ought to be ignored by all right-thinking people?

Brown v. Board of Education – separate but equal?

Roe v. Wade – abortion on demand?

Stenberg v. Carhart – partial birth abortion?

Obergefell v. Hodges – gay marriage?

The retired justice may have done the nation a great service, opening the door to invite us to ignore the Supreme Court.

Joe Doakes

What he’s also done is shown us what he’d never have put in a legal opinion; why repeal the Second Amendment if it isn’t in fact a broad protection of citizens’ gun rights?

The First Priority Is To Have Priorities

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

President Trump issued an Executive Order on immigration last month, pursuant to a law passed by Congress and signed by President Obama two years ago.   A Federal judge in California blocked it. 

 President Trump issued a revised Executive Order that took into account the judge’s objections.  A Federal judge in Hawaii has blocked the new order on the grounds that a Muslim Imam living in Hawaii may have a First Amendment right to invite anybody from anywhere in the world to come to Hawaii to visit him, if he feels like it, and therefore the United States government has no power to stop any invited guest from entering the country.

 This is sheer fantasy, of course, utterly unsupported by statute or any prior interpretation of the Constitution.  If it went up the ladder to the Supreme Court, it would be . . . well, now wait a minute.  That court is divided 4-4 because of the Scalia vacancy.  We can’t say what would happen.  Neil Gorsuch was nominated to fill the Scalia seat.  Did that happen?

 No.  The Establishment Republicans in Congress – the ones who supported Ted Cruz and Paul Ryan for President – the ones who swore “Never Trump” – are in charge of the Supreme Court nomination.  It’s the single most important thing they have on their plate but it’s stalled. 

 They’re busy, you see.  They never thought Trump would win so they didn’t bother making plans to repeal Obamacare.  Now that he’s dropped this tar-baby in their laps, they’re atwitter over how to appear to be doing something to keep their phony-baloney jobs without doing anything that might make the New York Times call them names.  It’s a conundrum, you see, which might possibly go away if they wait long enough and Trump is impeached.

I read the other day that North Korea claims to have a nuclear missile capable of reaching Hawaii.  Reeeeeeealy?  Hmmmmmmmm.

 Joe Doakes

 Not sure regular commenter Mammuthus Primigenius would approve – and losing Hawaii but keeping California just leaves the country in the same boat we’re in.

Apex

If Donald Trump never does another single good thing in office, or if he falls down an elevator shaft tomorrow (heaven forfend), he will have accomplished the one solitary hope I, and a lot of conservatives, had for a Trump adminsitration:  appointed a worthy successor to Antonin Scalia. in Neil Gorsuch:

As Gorsuch put it (in Cordova v. City of Albuquerque), the Constitution “isn’t some inkblot on which litigants may project their hopes and dreams . . . , but a carefully drafted text judges are charged with applying according to its original public meaning” (emphasis added). In his one foray as a National Review Online contributor, in 2005 (before he took the bench), Gorsuch lamented that “American liberals have become addicted to the courtroom, relying on judges and lawyers rather than elected leaders and the ballot box, as the primary means of effecting their social agenda on everything from gay marriage to assisted suicide to the use of vouchers for private-school education.”

Music to my ears.

Senate Republicans:  Screw this up at your peril.

Who else thinks Gorsuch is a good, “mainstream” choice?  This conservative talking head.

A Sigh Of Relief

The biggest relief of the Trump landslide?   The SCOTUS.  If Trump keeps his promise to draw from his list of Supreme Court nominees, this nation has at least a hope of having a backbone of relative sanity for the next generation.

I’m relieved to see that that was the impetus for an awful lot of voters:

The future of the Supreme Court’s ideological balance proved to be a critical factor for many Republican voters. In exit polls, about 1 in 5 voters said the Supreme Court appointments were “the most important factor” in their decision, and those voters favored Trump by a 57% to 40% margin, according to ABC News.

For me, the Supreme Court – and keeping Hillary and her owners, George Soros and the Saudis, away from it – was as close to a single-issue litmus test as I’ve ever had.

When Democrats Comment About The Constitution…

…it always makes for low-brow entertainment.

Krauthammer:

Republicans, say the Democrats, owe the President deference. Elections have consequences and Obama won re-election in 2012.

Yes. And the Republicans won the Senate in 2014 — if anything, a more proximal assertion of popular will. And both have equal standing in appointing a Supreme Court justice.

I keep pointing this out to DFLers who jabber about the President’s election.  I never, ever get a response beyond name-calling.

I’ll be adding emphasis to this next stretch:

It’s hard to swallow demands for deference from a party that for seven years has cheered Obama’s serial constitutional depredations: his rewriting the immigration laws by executive order (stayed by the courts); his reordering the energy economy by regulation (stayed by the courts); his enacting the nuclear deal with Iran, the most important treaty of this generation, without the required two-thirds of the Senate (by declaring it an executive agreement).

(Side note:  there are actually Democrats who think Obama is “the most disrespected president in history.  As if the George W Bush’s administration never happened).

Minority Leader Harry Reid complains about the Senate violating precedent if it refuses a lame-duck nominee. This is rich. It is Reid who just two years ago overthrew all precedent by abolishing the filibuster for most judicial and high executive appointments. In the name of what grand constitutional principle did Reid resort to a parliamentary maneuver so precedent-shattering that it was called the nuclear option? None. He did it in order to pack the U.S. Circuit Court for the District of Columbia with liberals who would reliably deflect challenges to Obamacare.

Power is all that matters to the left.  And they can do it, knowing the media gave up checking and balancing about the time man landed on the moon.