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Today's Commentary --- FBI may have "lost" critical notes on the Hillary email investigation --- A note on international tensions -- "In case you missed it" --- New immigration effort -- Peggy Lipton RIP --- Tlaib sparks anger --- Quotes from our Presidents -- Tribute to Doris Day (1922-2019) -- Fact-checking Babylon Bee -- Evening Edition -- Daily Verse
Reader comments are driving my newsletter today. It seems appropriate to use this perfectly-timed letter from reader Lawrence to introduce today’s unsettling FBI news….
Re the FBI spying. It's de rigeur for politicians to praise the FBI, and say "only a few" agents have gone off the rails. How quickly we forget! The FBI has a long history of political activity and abuse of citizens. The FBI HQ building in Washington is named for one of the most shameful characters to ever be in government, J. Edgar Hoover.
And, having worked with the FBI numerous times over the course of an almost 54-year career in the Defense Department, I can tell you they are not always the sharpest knife in the drawer. I've seen more than one DOD operation or investigation torpedoed by the FBI because they had congressional testimony coming up and wanted what we called a B4 (Bureau budget boosting bust) to brag about before Congress. I think we need to abolish the FBI, start over with a new law enforcement agency that has rigorous congressional controls. The agents that work for the FBI now could apply for jobs and be given hiring priority at the new agency, provided they are cleared of any political actions while working for the FBI.
A note on international tensions
By Mike Huckabee
A note on international tensions: There are big stories happening all over the world: the trade stalemate with China setting off President Trump’s tariff hikes that are roiling markets; North Korea shooting off another test missile to try to push our buttons; and Iran acting aggressive because it doesn’t like the sanctions that are obviously working to put pressure on them to give up their nuclear ambitions. If I don’t write about those stories regularly, it’s not because I’m ignoring them, but because they are the type of fast-breaking stories that are likely to change by the time you see this.
Just know that these things are going on, keep an eye on TV and Internet bulletins for the latest updates, and I’ll write about them where appropriate. Right now, I’ll just note that the President and his staff have many very serious issues to deal with on behalf of the entire nation and the world, so it would be nice if we could come together and let them do their jobs for a while instead of constantly trying to undermine Trump, weaken him and distract him with nonsensical fishing expeditions. Congressional Democrats may have time to go fishing, but he has a real job.
“In Case You Missed It”
By Mike Huckabee
Here’s a serious “In Case You Missed It” story from last week that shouldn’t be allowed to pass without notice. After the shooting at Highlands Ranch STEM School in Colorado where heroic student Kendrick Castillo and two others rushed the shooter and saved the lives of their classmates, the Brady Campaign announced that it would sponsor a vigil in his memory.
When students showed up, they discovered that the anti-gun group’s intentions weren’t to honor Castillo, but to use the shooting to push a pro-gun control agenda. The speakers they’d invited were all anti-gun activists and politicians. But like Castillo, they refused to just sit there and take it. They got up and walked out, shouting to the media, “This is not for us,” “Political stunt” and “We are people, not a statement.”
Let’s hope that the rising trend of would-be fighting back against assailants, exemplified by Kendrick Castillo, helps bring an end to such attacks, and that the refusal of his friends and classmates to be exploited by political opportunists brings a halt to that unsavory practice as well.
New immigration effort
By Mike Huckabee
President Trump is promoting immigration reforms that would make E-verify mandatory so that employers cannot hire illegal immigrants. Apparently, if that goes into effect, some of the first people in violation of it would be House Democrats. On a Party-line vote, the House Appropriations Committee just advanced to the floor a bill to allow people who are in the DACA program and were brought to the US illegally to work on House members’ staffs.
This is likely nothing but frantic virtue-signaling. As the linked article puts it, “It’s political Kabuki theater.” They must figure it will never pass the full House, and even if it did, it wouldn’t pass the Senate, and after that, it would have to be signed by President Trump (good luck!)
But considering that working on a Congressional staff is one of the most competitive jobs around, one that we think of as being reserved for only our best and brightest young Americans, and Congressional Democrats think we should shut out some of those young Americans in favor of people who are here illegally…well, if they’re doing it for publicity and virtue-signaling purposes, then I’m more than happy to give publicity to what today’s House Democrats think is virtuous.
Peggy Lipton RIP
By Pat Reeder
From “Huckabee” writer and resident pop culture historian, Pat Reeder (http://www.facebook.com/hollywoodhifibook ):
Our condolences today to the family of actress Peggy Lipton, who has died of cancer at 72 in Los Angeles.
Younger readers might know her from her comeback role on “Twin Peaks,” but those of a certain age will remember what forever cemented her place in TV history: her role as the beautiful blonde hippie, Julie Barnes, on “The Mod Squad.” The show ran on ABC from 1968-1973, and was about a trio of anti-establishment young people working as undercover cops. It won a number of awards and was the first major TV series to feature an interracial cast and to appeal to the ’60s counterculture youth demographic.
Lipton, who had started as a model and singer, became a major style icon during the run of the show. Uncomfortable with fame, she took a long break from acting after marrying producer/musician Quincy Jones in 1974 before resuming on “Twin Peaks” in 1988. She was first diagnosed with cancer in 2004.
Her show business legacy is being carried on by her daughters. Kidada Jones is an actress, model and fashion designer, and Rashida Jones is the beautiful comic actress/producer known for “The Office,” “Parks and Recreation” and other projects. Both were by their mother’s side when she passed.
Tlaib sparks anger
By Mike Huckabee
Michigan Democratic Rep. Rashida Tlaib has once again sparked anger and claims of anti-Semitism with her comments on a Yahoo News podcast in which she said, “There’s kind of a calming feeling I always tell folks when I think of the Holocaust…”
As usual, she claims her words were taken out of context, she’s the real victim, people are trying to silence her and stir up attacks on her…you know the drill by now. And I know that, especially in politics, people’s words are often taken out of context to twist their meaning.
So I’m not going to pile on or restate the obvious or risk not quoting her accurately. Instead, I’m going to send you to this link…
There, you can read her entire statement, in context. You can also read what she said later after being called on it. And you can read some of the criticism of it. Then you can make up your own mind.
But I think I should warn our friends on the other side of the aisle who are spinning so desperately to fend off criticism of some of their controversial freshmen House members: If you’re going to keep claiming they’ve been misquoted or taken out of context, you’ll leave their critics no choice but to do what I'm doing here: letting people read what they said in full. That might make it even worse.
Quotes from our Presidents
Tribute to Doris Day (1922-2019)
By Pat Reeder
From “Huckabee” pop culture guru Pat Reeder (http://www.facebook.com/hollywoodhifibook )
One of the last great stars of Hollywood's Golden Age, Doris Day, passed away Monday of pneumonia at her Carmel, California, home, a little over a month past her 97th birthday.
She wrote in her memoir that her public image as “America’s wholesome virgin, the girl next door, carefree and brimming with happiness” was “more make-believe than any film part I ever played.” The reality was far different. Her dreams of a career as a dancer were shattered when her leg was badly broken in a car crash at 12. During her Hollywood heights, she worked herself to the point of exhaustion and suffered a nervous breakdown. She was divorced three times and widowed once, and after her third husband died, she discovered he’d lost all her money on bad investments (she said she believed he’d just trusted the wrong person) and that he’d committed her to a sitcom she didn’t want to do. She also lost her son Terry Melcher (who’d had the hit “Hey Little Cobra” with the Rip Chords in 1963) to cancer in 2004.
But while personal happiness may have often eluded her until her later years, her show business success is unmatched by any other performer. She started out as a big band singer and her first hit, “Sentimental Journey,” became an unofficial theme for soldiers returning home from World War II. It went to #1 and spent 23 weeks on the charts. She went on to record more than 650 songs. Even though Hollywood studios later forced her to record a lot of what we’d now consider kitsch, her warm, distinctive voice elevated them, and when she had good material, few singers could touch her. A Billboard poll of DJs named her America’s #1 female vocalist in nine out of ten years between 1949 and 1958.
Her beauty and her sexy, honey-toned performance of “Embraceable You” convinced songwriters Sammy Cahn and Jule Styne to suggest her for a part in the 1948 movie, “Romance on the High Seas.” She was shocked that she got it with no acting experience. But she learned fast, the camera loved her, and with help from comedy star Jack Carson, she quickly developed into one of the best comic actresses of her time, then branched out into serious roles. Unusually, she was equally popular in both.
Her hits ranged from musicals to a trio of classic romantic comedies with Rock Hudson and Tony Randall to the dramatic biopic of singer Ruth Etting, “Love Me Or Leave Me.” She even worked for the master, Alfred Hitchcock, in “The Man Who Knew Too Much,” which introduced her theme song, “Que Sera Sera.” She received seven consecutive Laurel Awards as the top female box office star in Hollywood, a record that has never been broken. Both her movies and the soundtrack albums from them routinely went straight to the top 10.
Even the sitcom she thought was awful was so popular, it lasted five seasons and helped get her out of debt. She eventually won $22 million in damages from her late husband’s lawyer.
Aside from a couple of TV specials and guest appearances and a short-lived talk show, she’d mostly retied from show business by the late 1980s to devote her time to what truly made her happy, her animal welfare charity. However, in 2011, she released “My Heart,” a collection of unreleased recordings, and became the oldest artist ever to score a top 10 album of new material in the UK charts.
When movies became grittier (and dirtier) in the late ‘60s and ‘70s, Doris Day’s square, wholesome image led some to dismiss her as an outdated joke. But she always retained legions of fans. With the retro movements in music and fashion growing, younger people are rediscovering her (the 2003 Renee Zellweger movie “Down With Love” was a note-perfect tribute to the Day-Hudson classics) and recognizing anew her outstanding talents as a singer, actress, comedienne and icon of mid-century style. It's a sure bet that Doris Day's popularity will far outlive her critics.
Fact-checking Babylon Bee
By Mike Huckabee
Once again, Snopes.com has felt the urgent need to “fact-check” an obviously satirical news story from the Christian conservative humor site, The Babylon Bee.
Their rationale is that two people on Twitter shared it without labeling it as satire, and “under such conditions, the distinction between satire and misinformation is effectively meaningless,” so they had to spring into action to protect democracy from a couple of people you’ve never heard of not getting an obvious joke.
I suspect it’s more likely that this is just laying the foundation for declaring the Babylon Bee to be a source of “fake news” that must be banned from social media because, as Saul Alinsky taught, ridicule is a powerful weapon and the left would like to have it all to itself. I’ll believe the Babylon Bee is a clear and present danger to democracy when I start seeing all the anti-Trump/anti-Christian/anti-pro-life comedy bits from late night shows removed, too. Give people credit for having enough sense to know that the Babylon Bee isn’t meant to be taken seriously (or at least to figure that out after they click the links and see it.)
The vast majority of conservatives are smart enough to tell the difference between a serious news reporter and a comedian. It’s liberals who consistently mistake comedians for actual news sources, which is why they get so much of their “news” from Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Kimmel, Seth Meyers, Trevor Noah and Rachel Maddow.
Evening Edition - May 10
By Mike Huckabee
A wrap-up of all the news you might have missed yesterday!
Daily Verse (KJV)
"For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end."
– Jeremiah 29:11
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