Did Milli Vanilli keep their Grammy Award? Did Lance Armstrong keep his Tour de France trophies? So why should the New York Times and Washington Post get to keep their Pulitzer Prizes for their “deeply sourced” and “relentlessly reported coverage” of Trump/Russia “collusion?” That’s like giving Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez a MacArthur Genius Grant.
There were some great suggestions that the Times’ and Post’s Pulitzers be taken away and given to reporters such as Sara Carter and Catherine Herridge, or Judicial Watch head Tom Fitton, or I might add Greg Jarrett and John Solomon. You know, people who have performed real journalism, kept digging despite countless obstacles and stonewalling, and uncovered the truth that powerful people didn’t want the public to know. Unfortunately, the Pulitzer Committee doesn’t necessary reward that. They’d rather reward people who spread lies about the “right” people than the truth about the “wrong” (or “left”) people.
Keep this up and a Pulitzer Prize is going to be considered as meaningless as a Nobel Peace Prize.
True to his word, yesterday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell scheduled a vote on the “Green New Deal” plan put up by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the one which, depending on who you listen to, will either result in a CO2-free America that stops climate change, or cost $93 trillion, destroy the economy, return us to the 18th century and transform America into a socialist wasteland. Since several Democrats running for President and many in Congress have mouthed support for it, assuming there will be no repercussions because it will never pass, McConnell decided to let them put $93 trillion of other people’s money where their mouths are and go on the record as officially voting to endorse it.
The final vote was a crushing 57-0 against. All the Republicans and four Senators who vote with the Democrats (Joe Manchin of West Virginia, Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona, Doug Jones of Alabama and independent Angus King of Maine) voted no. Forty-three Democrats and Independents who vote with them voted “Present” to avoid going on the record either way. Nobody voted for it.
Democrats griped that the vote was a “political stunt,” but McConnell said, “If you’re going to sign on to nonsense, you ought to have to vote for nonsense.” AOC herself was particularly incensed, sending out a number of tweets slamming the Republicans for unconscionably scheduling a vote on a bill she proposed (I’m not certain she’s figured out yet how this whole “lawmaking” thing works.) If nothing else, the vote provided an opportunity for Republican Sen. Mike Lee to argue against it using some hilarious graphics that you can see at the link.
AOC seemed to take the mockery personally, and sent out a flurry of angry tweets, including one attacking Lee that read, “If this guy can be Senator, you can do anything.”
Her friends should advise her NEVER to try to insult another Congress member by questioning how somebody like that ever got elected to Congress. It will only result in awkward, uncomfortable glances between everyone around her.
CNN president Jeff Zucker still refuses to admit that to most of the public, CNN’s motto is no longer “This...is CNN” but “What...is fact-checking?” The network that gave us a ‘round-the-clock hysteria fest over “Russian collusion” (not to mention trying to turn Michael Avenatti into a TV star) apparently thinks it had no obligation to find out if any of the outrageous things they were saying about the President of the United States being a Russian mole were true.
Zucker wrote in an email, “We are not investigators. We are journalists, and our role is to report the facts as we know them, which is exactly what we did.”
I hate to break this to him, but the first job of a journalist is to investigate, so that they may find out what the facts are before reporting them. Simply repeating whatever rumors some unnamed source tells you doesn’t make you a “journalist,” it makes you the town gossip with a TV studio.
And what good are “the facts as we know them,” if the “facts” that you know are false, which means they aren’t facts at all? That’s like the currently-popular nonsense phrase, “You must share your truth.” If it’s actually the truth, then it’s not just “your” truth, it’s THE truth. If it’s only true to you, then it’s not the truth, it’s just your opinion.
Hey, I freely admit that I write and voice my opinions every day. But I don’t claim to be a news network or a journalist. I am a commentator. Still, I try to base my opinions on real facts that are actually true. In that sense, maybe I am more of a journalist or a news network than CNN is these days.
In the meantime, the White House took the offensive by sending to the media a list of some of the outrageous and outrageously wrong things various “experts” said on their outlets and questioning whether they think these people deserve to be booked again, given their record. But to be fair, they are called “talking heads,” not “talking brains.”
Even if the news networks stubbornly refuse to acknowledge their madness, that doesn’t mean the rest of us can’t have some fun with it by filling out our “March Madness” news source brackets. See how you would rank which news outlet went the most bat-poop mad over the Mueller investigation and the Russian collusion delusion. The winner gets a trophy and a year's supply of Prozac.
Here’s how we know Trump Derangement Syndrome and obsession with “Russian collusion” have driven Democratic politicians and media figures stark raving insane: Al Sharpton is now the voice of reason on the left.
And here’s how we know the current Democratic Party leadership has veered to the far left of sanity: they’re quietly being told to reel in their Looney-Toon liberalism by Barack Obama.
Obamacare is suddenly back in the news, and Democrats who can’t wipe the egg off their faces over the Mueller report are gladly seizing on it to change the subject.
After a long period of inaction on the subject, the Trump Justice Department has sided with a Texas district judge who ruled the entire Affordable Care Act unconstitutional. The Supreme Court ruled that Congress had the power to enact it if it were classified as a tax (citing the mandate requiring people to buy insurance or pay a fee to the IRS.) But the Texas judge agreed with the states challenging the ACA that when the Republican Congress partially repealed Obamacare by eliminating the individual mandate, that rendered the entire bill unconstitutional.
There are other conflicting rulings, and this will end up back in the Supreme Court again. Knowing the SCOTUS’ history of bending over backwards to find any way to justify protecting the ACA, it’s unlikely they’ll uphold the Texas judge.
But with the Trump DOJ arguing that he’s correct, Democrats immediately played the “Republicans don’t care about people” card, claiming that they want to scrape the ACA’s protections for Americans with preexisting conditions. This would be easier to counter if the GOP Congress had done what it promised and passed a full “repeal and replace” bill rather than cutting away at it in bits and pieces. Americans are justifiably concerned with rising health care costs and how to cover people who need medical care they can’t afford.
Nobody wants anyone to go without needed treatment, and finding market-based ways to cover those who can’t afford coverage while bringing down costs for those who can should have been the focus from day one. That’s what I was advocating ten years ago, but back then, Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats were in charge and they locked out the opposition and forced their plan onto everyone (déjà vu!) We got a Trojan horse bill designed more to destroy private insurance and lead us into single-payer government health care than provide the best coverage for the lowest cost.
What we should do now is finally have that discussion about how to cover those who need help while providing choice, quality and affordability to everyone else. But with Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats back in charge, a presidential election season looming, and the Trump DOJ arguing for the entire ACA to be tossed out, what we’re likely to get instead is at least two more years of hearing that Republicans want sick people to suffer and die, while Democrats refuse to work with them to prevent that from happening.
And some people really think the government should be in charge of ALL their health care?
A three-judge panel of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco unanimously ruled that the parents of the late Kate Steinle can’t sue the city for negligence over the death of their daughter at the hands of an illegal immigrant who was released from jail by the sheriff’s department in defiance of ICE’s request that he be held for them to pick up for deportation for the sixth time.
One of the judges was nominated by President Trump, and he was sympathetic to the family, but he said that unfortunately, under the existing law, the sheriff was within his authority to order his office not to cooperate with federal authorities. In short, California has legalized criminal negligence by authorities that results in the death of US citizens. He said that can be changed only by California’s state and municipal political branches of government, “or perhaps by Congress.”
Well, we know it won’t be changed by the California (sanctuary) state government, and certainly not by San Francisco’s (sanctuary) city government. That leaves it to Congress, where the House is now run by Democrats, who would rather abolish ICE than deport violent criminal illegal aliens. So if you want to see justice for the Steinle family and restore safety and sanity to our immigration policies and criminal law enforcement, then I’d urge you to vote Republican in 2020 as if your life and the lives of your family depended on it.
The giants of tech and social media might think they’re so big they can get away with censoring viewpoints they don’t like or stealing users’ data. And so far, the federal government hasn’t done anything about it. But that still leaves 50 states with attorneys general, and there’s a bipartisan movement afoot to cut the tech giants down to size on a non-federal level. Speaking as a conservative, I say, “Good! Never send the feds to do a job that the states can do more efficiently.”
Monday, Venezuela suffered another major power blackout, which the socialist government blamed on “sabotage” by its US-backed opponents. Sorry, but if the US really wanted to sabotage Venezuela and see it deprived of power, medicine, food and even toilet paper, we’d be backing the socialists.
Farewell to a Great Lady You Should Know
(From “Huckabee” writer and resident pop culture guru, Pat Reeder.)
The sad duty often falls to me to write obituaries for great entertainers who deserved more fame than they enjoyed. This one is especially difficult because this lady wasn’t just a delightful folk singer/songwriter and wit, she was also one of our dearest friends. If you love to laugh, you need to know her, so please read on and click on the links.
Lu Mitchell passed away Monday in Dallas at 95. Known in Texas as the queen of the satirical folk singers, she was famous enough in her genre to be a draw at festivals as far away as New York and Ireland. She came out of the coffee club folk/protest scene in the ‘60s, an early feminist who couldn’t stand the sexist corporate culture of the time. She wrote her first song after she made a suggestion for improving office efficiency and her boss told her she wasn’t paid to think, he was paid to think. Fuming, she went back to her typewriter and banged out her first original lyric, “(Mary Stuffed Her Boss in) The Paper Shredder.” (Clip here: https://web.archive.org/web/20130929104045/http://www.lumitchell.com/lm_papershredder.mp3 ) It became a fan favorite that brought down the house for decades to come.
Last fall, we attended the State Fair of Texas, and in the Hall of State, at an exhibit on Martin Luther King Jr. and the 1960s civil rights movement in Texas, we were thrilled to find a plaque honoring Lu for championing civil rights at a time when that involved genuine risk. Back then, you couldn’t hide behind a keyboard and a fake name and call yourself a “social justice warrior.”
Her songs were catchy, hilarious, often a bit ribald but not offensive. With her trademark giant owlish glasses and bobbed hair, her twinkling eyes and her earthy sense of humor, she was like a cross between Alan Sherman, Erma Bombeck and your salty grandmother. Her subjects ranged from hot topics in the news (she parodied “Love Potion #9” for her song about kinky New York Gov. Elliot Spitzer, “Client #9”) to life’s little annoyances (her airport security song, “Feel Me Up” - https://youtu.be/ktTsYeBRhFM ) to things anyone could relate to, like her Willie Nelson-inspired song about cruise ships, “It’s Time to Eat Again,” and her discovery of the joys of the bidet during a trip to Italy (“I’ve Got the Cleanest Little Tush in Tuscany.”)
Two of her best albums were her Christmas album, “Yet Shall We Be Merry,” with her classic holiday tunes “Lost in the Mall Again” and “The One and Only Fruitcake in the World”…And her album on coping with health problems, “Medical Mayhem,” featuring fan favorite, “The Mammogram Song”…
As some of you may have gleaned by now, before writing for Gov. Huckabee, my wife Laura Ainsworth and I wrote a syndicated topical radio service called The Comedy Wire. In addition to writing great humorous and serious news commentary, Laura is an award-winning retro jazz vocalist. She would combine those talents to do parody songs about the news for the Comedy Wire. Friends who heard them said, “You have to meet Lu Mitchell!” So we went to a concert and quickly became fast friends, with Lu as a sort of mentor to Laura. They even wrote a song together about a then-hot decorating fad, a parody of “My Way” called “Feng Shui” (“I took a dare, and moved a chair…I did it feeeeeeng shuuuuiiiii!”)
We were privileged to become regular guests with a much-coveted place at her private dinner parties, where after a pot luck supper, some of the best folk musicians around would break out their instruments and take turns performing in her living room. They didn’t know many of Laura’s songs, but Lu always requested “Over the Rainbow” or “Feed the Birds.” She often asked Laura to do guest shots at her shows (here she is singing “Feed The Birds” at Lu’s Farewell Concert: https://youtu.be/8c8nZPgMutM )
Even though she was already in her early ‘80s when we met her, we never even thought of the age gap. She was so sharp, funny and full of life, she could have been younger than us. Also, despite being a diehard Democrat of the old folk music/protest era, unlike today’s intolerant lefties, she had friends across the political spectrum and didn’t mind if your views didn't match hers. She knew we wrote for Mike Huckabee and always wanted to know what he and we thought about some story in the news. Sadly, they aren’t making any more Lu Mitchells, and the world is poorer for losing her.
Unfortunately, her website went offline a couple of years ago after health issues forced her to retire, but it’s stored in the Internet Archive. You can find some wonderful autobiographical details, personal photos and stories involving folk music legends that capture her warmth and sharp wit here:
Here is a 36-minute concert with some great songs (unfortunately, they didn’t mic the crowd so you can’t hear all the laughter):
Here’s her archived home page and her discography, which features some hilarious song clips…
Finally, here is Lu Mitchell as we will always remember her: in the kitchen of her North Dallas home, where we spent so many unforgettable evenings sharing music, laughter and great food, including her delicious bread and Scandinavian wedding cookies. Everyone wanted her bread recipe, so she made this video to share it with her close friends. We are happy to share it, and Lu Mitchell, with you.
Goodbye to a brilliant talent, a wonderful lady and the best friend anyone could ever hope for.