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Texas Update

February 20, 2021

Amazingly, leftist politicians and commenters are trying to blame the power outages in Texas on Republican policies, even though they are mostly due to Texas adopting the kind of “green energy” push...

Mars Here We Come

February 20, 2021

Congratulations to all the scientists, engineers and others who helped accomplish yesterday’s milestone landing of the rover Perseverance on the surface of Mars.

The mission was timed for the closest alignment of Earth and Mars, but that still meant a trip of 300 million miles, or seven months of traveling – so far away that radio signals from Percy (the rover’s nickname) take nearly 12 minutes to reach Earth. It will spend the next two years drilling into the Martian surface to collect rock samples, which will be brought back by another rocket by 2031 to search for signs of bygone microscopic life. Let's hope that by that time, there are still signs of intelligent life on Earth.

Two other spacecraft, from the UAE and China, are also orbiting Mars. China also plans to send down a small rover to seek signs of life. And if it finds any, to immediately oppress it.


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I've repeatedly made it clear that I condemn the Capitol Hill riot on January 6 and want to see accountability, including jail time where appropriate, for all crimes committed that day. But the media narrative of what happened at the Capitol during Trump’s otherwise-peaceful rally for an honest election is far from what actually occurred.

Just as President Biden has clung tightly to the fiction that President Trump referred to white supremacists as “good people,” he also maintained after Trump’s acquittal that Officer Brian Sicknick had lost “his life while protecting the Capitol from a violent, riotous mob on January 6, 2021.” As the story went, Sicknick had been bashed in the head by a violent pro-Trumper and had died of his injury. THE NEW YORK TIMES had said that the mob “overpowered Sicknick” and “struck him in the head with a fire extinguisher,” after which, “with a bloody gash in his head, Mr. Sicknick was rushed to the hospital and placed on life support.” But, as journalist and free-speech advocate Glenn Greenwald points out, “the problem with this story is that is it is false in almost all respects.”

"...This horrifying story about a pro-Trump mob beating a police officer to death with a fire extinguisher was repeated over and over,” Greenwald writes, “by multiple journalists on television, in print, and on social media. It became arguably the single most-emphasized and known story of this event, and understandably so --- it was a savage and barbaric act that resulted in the harrowing killing by a pro-Trump mob of a young Capitol police officer.”

I wonder how many people who have repeated this false story even know where it originated. Not surprisingly, it started with that report from the TIMES, which cited as sources only anonymous law enforcement officials. That's all there was. As Greenwald writes, “Despite this alleged brutal murder taking place in one of the most surveilled buildings on the planet, filled that day with hundreds of cellphones taping the events, nobody saw video of it. No photographs depicted it. To this day, no autopsy report has been released. No details from any official source have been provided.” He died later, and we don’t know the cause.

The unsourced NYT story seems to be good enough for President Biden, though; he is either far too credulous or a calculated liar. Perhaps he didn’t see another story that ran the same day as the TIMES story –-- an interview in ProPublica with Sicknick’s brother that said nothing at all about a head injury or a fire extinguisher, only about a possible reaction to pepper spray. It said Sicknick had texted from the hospital that he was “in good spirits.”

And perhaps Biden didn’t read the entire CNN story that, deep within (not in the headline, of course), said "...medical examiners did not find signs that the officer sustained blunt force trauma, so investigators believe that early reports that he was fatally struck by a fire extinguisher are not true.”

To be sure, many if not most Americans pay attention only to the first few paragraphs of a story or even just the headlines, and one of the NYT articles carried this one: “He Dreamed of Being a Police Officer, Then Was Killed By a Pro-Trump Mob.”

Greenwald makes the case that as it became clearer that no other deaths could be attributed to the pro-Trump mob --- that the other fatalities all had other causes --- it became even more important to spread the fake fire extinguisher story, which was the ONE WAY to depict the riot “in the most violent and menacing light possible.”

It should be possible to condemn the riot –- as I and most other Trump supporters did –- without spreading outrageous lies about what happened that day, but the left doesn’t know how to do that. Creating huge fake whoppers is their stock and trade. And now that they’ve had seven weeks to repeat this one over and over, at least half the country wrongly believes Office Sicknick was beaten to death by a pro-Trump mob. Greenwald says, “There is no circumstance or motive that justifies the dissemination of false claims by journalists. The more consequential the event, the less justified, and more harmful, serial journalistic falsehoods are.”

This particular lie was extremely consequential. It even made it into the impeachment hearing and subsequent trial, with the one article of impeachment against President Trump falsely claiming that Trump supporters “injured and killed law enforcement personnel.” As noted by legal analyst Andrew McCarthy, the House impeachment managers explicitly said on page 28 of their pretrial memorandum that “the insurrectionists killed a Capitol police officer by striking him in the head with a fire extinguisher.”

Finally, on February 9, REVOLVER NEWS ran a compilation and analysis of what we know, and don’t know, regarding Sicknick’s death –- I believe we commented and linked to that story –- and Tucker Carlson reported on it the following day. But so much damage had already been done. And most of the media outlets that had spread the lie in the first place simply ignored the real story. THE NYT still has not written a retraction or correction, just a vague “update” on their original reporting that says, “New information has emerged regarding the death of Capitol officer Brian Sicknick that questions the initial cause of his death provided by officials close to the Capitol Police.”

Another false narrative about a man carrying zip-ties was also spread, presumably to make the security breach seem like a premeditated attempt to forcibly detain people. But this was shown to be wrong as well; Greenwald’s article gives details.

Yet another particularly damaging lie is the insistence that this was an “armed insurrection.” That suggests there were guns, when there’s no evidence of any protester having a gun inside the Capitol. And if there were no guns, what kind of an “insurrection” (or “coup”) is that? On January 15, REUTERS published an article with the headline, ‘U.S. says Capitol rioters meant to ‘capture and assassinate’ officials.” Mainstream reporters and TDS-infected tweeters such as Harvard Law’s Laurence Tribe picked that up and ran with it.

And now Nancy Pelosi, with her insistence on militarizing the Capitol and blaming pro-Trump “domestic terrorists” for armed soldiers and fences topped with razor wire, inflates the narrative even more. THIS IS ALL BASED ON A LIE that they just keep telling, to further marginalize Trump supporters.

One last point: Officer Brian Sicknick lay in honor in the Capitol Rotunda, one of only four in our country’s history to do so, and was buried in Arlington National Cemetery. Yes, all who lose their lives as law enforcement officers are heroes, but in this case is it too cynical to think of this honor as also being used as a stunt by Democrats to help perpetuate their false narrative? I don’t think so, especially since Pelosi and Schumer took the opportunity to release a joint statement again calling it a “violent insurrection.” Tell me, when have they shown such deep concern for officers who died in leftist mob violence?


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Having spent their first month in office dismantling America's fuel industry and energy independence and eviscerating the First Amendment, the Biden Administration is now turning to the Second Amendment. But did you expect anything less from a man who said he would put Beto "Hell, yes, we're going to take your AR-15" O'Rourke in charge of gun control? No wonder gun sales have gone through the roof since November (and they were already high, due to the riots and looting, another thing gun sellers can thank Democrats for.)

You can read about what Biden is planning to do here, but it's questionable whether it would make it past the Senate filibuster or the Supreme Court. The SCOTUS would also likely end up weighing in on any attempts to get around Congress and undermine the Second Amendment by executive order.

I've been writing about this issue for years now, so I know that anytime you question new gun laws, you're accused of wanting more people to DIE! So here are just a few of the problems with these laws, stripped of the overheated emotional rhetoric:

1. They violate the Second Amendment, and many, many Americans cherish that Amendment.

2. While gun control advocates constantly talk about banning "assault weapons" and "weapons of war," those are vague terms conjured up by people who know nothing about guns. An AR-15 isn't a "weapon of war," it's a hunting rifle with some features that make the unitiatied think it looks like it might be used by soldiers. An "assault weapon" is no more lethal than any other gun (in the wrong hands, isn't any gun an "assault weapon?"), it just has to have any of a list of traits that gun control activists find scary, even though some are purely cosmetic, or safety features (a barrel shield keeps you from burning your fingers on a hot barrel) or convenient (an adjustable stock allows people of different sizes, like a husband and wife, to share the same rifle at a target range without having to buy two of them.)

3. This is the most important, yet least mentioned fact of all: the left is constantly demanding more gun laws despite abundant evidence that the ones we already have either aren't working or aren't being enforced. They demand that authorities devote an incredible amount of time, hours and taxpayer money to tracking, checking and policing law-abiding gun owners who aren't the problem. But how many times have we seen a mass shooting and later learned that under current laws, the culprit already should never have been allowed to buy a weapon - but a form was misplaced, or a judge let them go, or the police never got around to investigating a complaint, etc. etc. etc.

In virtually every case, mass shootings stop when someone else with a gun, whether it's a cop or an armed citizen, arrives on the scene and starts shooting back.

Yet when it comes to gun laws, liberals have the same attitude that they have toward socialism: it's never, ever worked anywhere, ever...but maybe if we just try a little more of it, it will start working.


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NYT Retraction

February 18, 2021

The New York Times, the same ultra-politicized newspaper that can't tell the difference between its own news and opinion pages yet thinks we need a government-appointed "Reality Czar" to police our speech, has quietly backed away from one of its most explosive claims: that Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick died after being struck in the head by a fire extinguisher hurled by a rioter.

As we'd already reported in this newsletter, Officer Sicknick had assured family members that he was okay after the violence ended, he died later that day, and no blunt force trauma was found on his body. Weeks went by without any official cause of death being given, until people began to speculate on whether he might have had a stroke or a reaction to chemicals used at the scene.

This lack of facts, however, didn't deter the New York Times from running with their story, nor Congressional Democrats from shamelessly politicizing Officer Sicknick's death after a year in which many of them showed little respect for the dangers faced by police officers. They even used it to give emotional weight to their empty impeachment case against the President, blaming him for Officer Sicknick's death, just as he's personally responsible for every coronavirus death, even the ones in New York nursing homes, according to Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who forced the nursing homes to take in COVID-19 patients.

A lot of people are asking what all these Trump-hating obsessives will do if they don't have Trump to hate and curse and scream about all day. I just wonder who they'll blame for all their own mistakes and failures.

Incidentally, thanks to Ed Driscoll at Instapundit for pointing out this perfect response from the satirical site, the Babylon Bee: "Ignorant Senator Shares New York Times Article Thinking It's Real."


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