The Trump Tax Cuts

The following is a graph from a New York Times article of April 14th:

The article notes:

To a large degree, the gap between perception and reality on the tax cuts appears to flow from a sustained — and misleading — effort by liberal opponents of the law to brand it as a broad middle-class tax increase.

That effort began in the fall of 2017, when Republicans prepared to introduce legislation that models by the independent Tax Policy Center predicted could raise taxes on nearly a third of middle-class taxpayers. It continued through Mr. Trump’s signing of the law, even though the group’s models showed that the revised bill would raise taxes on relatively few in the middle class in the 2018 tax year.

The only thing missing from the article is The New York Times taking some responsibility for what is illustrated by the chart.

It gets even more interesting. The article also includes this chart:

This might be a reflection of the news sources the Democrats choose versus the news sources the Republicans choose. It illustrates the fact that much of what is being reported in major news sources is simply not true. Much of the mainstream media is doing a disservice to the people who choose to watch it.

There Is A Difference Between Affectionate and Being Creepy

The media has written a lot about Joe Biden’s style in the past few days. Today the Associated Press posted an article stating that Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi has stated that Joe Biden needs to understand that people have personal space that needs to be respected. Yesterday The American Thinker posted an article noting that even after the dawn of the #MeToo movement, Democrats do not seem overly concerned about Joe Biden’s behavior. Remember, this is the party of Ted Kennedy, Bill Clinton,  etc. Joe Biden’s behavior seems tame. There are numerous pictures showing questionable behavior by Joe Biden, but he gets a pass. There was no actual evidence against Clarence Thomas or Brett Kavanaugh, but they were viciously attacked. The Lt. Governor of Virginia is still in office despite reports of sexual assault that were reported at the time of the incident. There seems to be a bit of a double standard here.

The American Thinker concludes:

My guess — and it is a pure guess, as I have no connections with the Dems’ inner circles — is that Joe Biden is going to see the wisdom of withdrawing from the race, especially since his son Hunter’s connections in Ukraine are at risk.  He’s old and has been making scads of money giving lectures.  He has a choice: retire and reap gratitude, honors, and many more lucrative speaking gigs, or else press forward with his candidacy and become an icon of perversion, with his son facing Trump treatment by the media, an old white male whose apologies for his privilege only further enrage the aggrieved.

I think Joe Biden is probably a very nice man, but I don’t want a man who has no respect for personal space as President. I realize that the media will pretty much leave him alone because he is a Democrat, but there would always be a controversy about his behavior swirling around him.

 

Fixing The Intelligence Community

On Friday, The Daily Caller posted an article titled, “OPINION: How Could The Intelligence Community Fail So Badly?”

The article states:

Far more than a failure of journalism, the Russia collusion narrative was, at its core, a monstrous failure of U.S. intelligence and counterintelligence.

All criticism of the news media aside for the moment, the bottom line is that professional journalists received fake intelligence information from U.S. government leakers whom they trusted.

That is probably true, but I also think that the personal bias of those individuals reporting the news caused them to believe things that most people would have regarded as totally ridiculous.

The article continues:

The entire Russian collusion debacle shows that the American intelligence and counterintelligence processes have broken down.

Emphatic former CIA director John Brennan, a main engine behind spreading the Russia collusion story through the intelligence community and into the media, suddenly doesn’t sound so certain about himself. The day after Attorney General William Barr released the special prosecutor’s finding of no collusion, Brennan confessed to MSNBC, “I don’t know if I received bad information but I think I suspected that there was more than there actually was.”

This is a shocking admission from the man who was, at the time, the nation’s highest-ranking professional intelligence officer.

Brennan wasn’t indicting just himself. He inadvertently accused the entire CIA. Whatever quality control systems it has, the CIA failed to prevent “bad information” from making its way up the chain to the national strategic level.

The article goes on to mention that journalists have learned to depend on leaks from government officials. Leaking classified information is a crime punishable by law. Those leaking need to be held accountable. At the same time, the government needs to be more transparent. A lot of things that are classified are classified to save the government from embarrassment.

The article concludes:

This leads to the most dangerous conclusion of all. The Russia collusion debacle has shown that the FBI and CIA leadership are not effectively under the oversight of elected officials, but instead are capable of tampering with the American democratic process and constitutional governance.

All this must stop. President Trump should assemble a team of solid intelligence and counterintelligence veterans to dig deep into the FBI and CIA leadership, discover the real nature of the problems and devise solutions before our system self-destructs.

It’s time to create an intelligence community that is apolitical. I don’t know if that is possible, but it’s a great goal.

The Power Of The Media Illustrated

This is the current polling from RealClearPolitics:

This is some recent economic news reported by The Washington Times on January 9:

Given the dazzling December economic data, it’s no wonder the press gave it short shrift. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the economy added a whopping 312,000 jobs, far more than the expected 176,000. After revisions, job gains have averaged an impressive 254,000 per month over the past three months. Job growth in 2018 (an average of 220,000 per month) passed that of both 2016 (195,000) and 2017 (182,000). Payrolls increased by 2.6 million in 2018, the highest since 2015.

The sunny jobs picture encouraged 419,000 new workers to enter the workforce and sent the labor force participation rate up to 63.1 percent. Unemployment rates among blacks, Latinos and women are at or near historic lows.

Job growth has also meant significant wage growth. Wages are up a stunning 3.2 percent from last year and .4 percent from November. December was the third straight month that the yearlong growth in nominal average hourly earnings was above 3 percent in nearly a decade; the last time we saw that trend was April 2009. Wages are also being given an assist by inflation being kept in check.

The article at The Washington Times concludes:

His (President Trump’s) astounding economic track record is their worst nightmare. It puts the lie to the nonsense Mr. Obama, the Democrats and the media have been shoveling for years: That anemic economic growth, high unemployment, the collapse of manufacturing and grotesque trade imbalances were the “new normal.”

It also pointedly demonstrates that the statist vision — radical wealth redistribution, socialized medicine, green energy chimeras, social justice enforcement, limits on free speech, private property and gun ownership, and the rule of the leftist mob — creates only tyranny, poverty, injustice and servitude. (Note the deflection: These are things the left claims to want to eradicate.)

Mr. Trump and his economic thunderbolt are exposing the left and its policies as irredeemably bankrupt, economically and morally. And that is perhaps the biggest reason why they must try to destroy him.

A lot of this economic news has not been reported. However, people do notice when there are more jobs available and there is more money in their paycheck. President Trump’s approval numbers are finally in positive numbers. The economy is booming. What would be the basis for most Americans believing America is headed in the wrong direction? Might it be the constant negative reporting from the media? Can you imaging what President Trump’s approval rating would be if the media were actually balanced? Just remember–the people vote. The media represents only a small percentage of votes.

A Perspective You Won’t Hear In The Mainstream Media

Any illusions I might have had about objectivity in the mainstream media have been totally destroyed during the Trump administration. I understand that the press is biased, but I don’t believe I have ever seen them this vicious.

The American Thinker posted an article today that provides a perspective on President Trump that we haven’t heard a lot of.

The article reports:

My husband worked for Trump when he took over the Old Commodore Hotel on 42nd Street and transformed it into the Grand Hyatt.

He was then married to Ivana Trump, and for twelve years, my husband watched him completely salvage the dying Midtown area of Manhattan.  Not only did he never see a hint of racism in the man, but he was convinced he was completely colorblind.  He staffed the hotel with a majority of minority workers in all positions, from executive managers to housekeeping.

My husband was raised in the Deep South and knows what a racist looks and acts like, and it ain’t our president.  In 1998 and 1999, Jesse Jackson was praising Trump for a lifetime of help to the black community.  Trump had been involved with Jackson’s Rainbow Coalition and was instrumental in opening Wall Street to it.  Of course, Jesse Jackson has never been one to adhere to deep convictions.  He was against abortion and redefining marriage before succumbing to the Democrat left wing.

If, as critics allege, Trump is truly a Nazi, then why has he been heralded as Israel’s biggest supporter?  Why was he the only president to move our embassy to Jerusalem?  Why didn’t he object to his daughter’s conversion to Judaism?  It’s so easy to hurl accusations of racism and Nazism because frankly, the brain-dead mobs are interested only in vandalism and mayhem and totally disinterested in truth.  They also have no idea what racism and Nazism historically mean.

What on Earth did Donald Trump do to deserve these unfair labels?  Apparently, he told the truth about what was happening to the country he loves so much.  The fact is that Trump has never been against immigrants or immigration – just the abuse of our laws.

There are a lot of reasons for the hatred of President Trump. He represents a serious threat to the status quo. He is a businessman–businessmen solve problems–politicians simply recite problems to get re-elected and then neglect to solve them. If President Trump is successful, the gravy train that Washington politicians have been on for decades may slow down a little. If President Trump succeeds in solving even a small percentage of Washington’s problems, he will expose the ineffectiveness of government by the political class. Government by the political class was not what our Founding Fathers designed, and it would be wonderful to see it end.

Fireworks And Crickets

The Gateway Pundit posted an article today with the headline, “Corrupt Media Reported on Kavanaugh Accuser 100 Times More than Ellison Accusers Who Actually Filed Police Report.”

The article reminds us that in August Rep. Keith Ellison’s former lover Karen Monahan hurled serious accusations at the current Deputy Chairman of the Democrat Party. There are evidently witnesses to the physical and mental abuse of Ms. Monahan. Ms. Monahan’s son also has stated that he has seen video of the abuse.

The article reports:

Austin Monahan described seeing video of Keith Ellison –Screaming “f*cking bitch!” and dragging his mother off a bed by her feet!

In the middle of 2017, I was using my moms computer trying to download something and I clicked on a file, I found over 100 text and twitters messages and video almost 2 min long that showed Keith Ellison dragging my mama off the bed by her feet, screaming and calling her a “fucking bitch” and telling her to get the fuck out of his house.

There is a record of a 911 call from Ms. Monahan.

The article includes the following:

Meanwhile Keith Ellison’s candidacy continues unchecked. Judge Kavanaugh’s confirmation is temporarily stalled. The media has been quiet on Ellison in order not to hinder his campaign. The media has been loud on Judge Kavanuagh in order to stall his confirmation. The media has become a political arm of the Democrat party, and they need to be ignored and shunned by the American voters. They are no longer a reliable source of information.

The Leaking Echo Chamber

Real Clear Investigations posted an article today about the targeted anti-Trump leaks to the press coming from the Justice Department.

The article reports:

A trail of evidence appearing in major news outlets suggests a campaign to undermine President Trump from within the government through illegal leaks of classified information, and then to thwart congressional investigators probing the disclosures.

On Monday the Justice Department released a handful of texts and other documents that included two former officials known for their anti-Trump bias – Peter Strzok and Lisa Page of the FBI – discussing the DOJ’s “media leak strategy.” Strzok now says, through his lawyer, that that strategy was aimed at preventing leaks. Nevertheless, days later he and Page approvingly mention forthcoming news articles critical of Trump associates.

“The leaks that have been coming out of the FBI and DOJ since 2016 are unconscionable,” said retired FBI supervisory special agent James Gagliano. “There’s a difference between whistleblowing and leaking for self-serving or partisan purposes.”

Past and present U.S. officials say the template for the leak campaign can be traced back to the Obama administration’s efforts to sell the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, which made the press reliant on background conversations and favorable leaks from government officials. Obama adviser Ben Rhodes told the New York Times in 2016 that “we created an echo chamber” that “helped retail the administration’s narrative.”

“That same configuration,” said Michael Doran, a senior official in the George W. Bush White House, “the press, political operatives, newly minted experts, social media validators—was repurposed to target Trump, his campaign, transition team, then presidency.” The echo chamber’s primary instrument in attacking the current White House, said Doran, “is the Russia collusion narrative.”

This is the quote from the New York Times article about the echo chamber:

As Malley (Rob Malley, a favored troubleshooter who ran negotiations that could keep the Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad in power during the Obama administration) and representatives of the State Department, including Wendy Sherman and Secretary of State John Kerry, engaged in formal negotiations with the Iranians, to ratify details of a framework that had already been agreed upon, Rhodes’s war room did its work on Capitol Hill and with reporters. In the spring of last year, legions of arms-control experts began popping up at think tanks and on social media, and then became key sources for hundreds of often-clueless reporters. “We created an echo chamber,” he admitted, when I asked him to explain the onslaught of freshly minted experts cheerleading for the deal. “They were saying things that validated what we had given them to say.”

This is how it works. Find a cooperative person who wants to be on television as an expert. Feed him the conclusion you want him to draw. Then find another one.

The press is not currently our friend. Maybe that will change someday, but right now that is the situation. If we want to keep our representative republic, we need to vote against the political party that has consistently used government agencies and anyone in the press who was willing to cooperate for partisan purposes.

The Media Only Told Half Of The Story (As Usual)

The Daily Wire posted an article today about the disinviting of Kaitlan Collins, a White House correspondent for CNN, to a Rose Garden press conference. The media would have you believe that Ms. Collins is being censored for asking the wrong questions or that CNN was barred from the Rose Garden press conference. Neither is true.

The article reports what actually happened:

But White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders offered a very different account.

“At the conclusion of a press event in the Oval Office a reporter shouted questions and refused to leave despite repeatedly being asked to do so,” Sanders said in a statement. “Subsequently, our staff informed her she was not welcome to participate in the next event, but made clear that any other journalist from her network could attend.”

When you are asked to leave the Oval Office, it is wise to do so.

The article concludes:

Just as fellow CNN White House correspondent Jim Acosta has been doing since Day 1 of the Trump administration, Collins is clearly trying to get famous by being “tough” on the president. But she’s not being tough, she’s being rude. Ask a question, maybe two, then get out.

So now, that’s a new tactic by the press: Get into the Oval, then simply refuse to leave.

When Trump tires of the tactic (he will) and bars the entire press corps from his office, the MSM will be up in arms.

And when that happens, they should, perhaps, direct some of their ire toward Collins and Acosta. There’s a way to do the job, a very difficult job, without being rude. Give it a try, White House press corps, you just might like it.

We need Emily Post to educate the press corps on basic manners. They seem to have forgotten or never learned them.

What New Craziness Is This?

Yesterday Breitbart posted an article that included a video of Jennifer Rubin on MSNBC. You can follow the link to watch the entire video (I couldn’t figure out how to embed it), but there is just one part I want to share.

This is Ms Rubin’s comment regarding Sarah Sanders:

“[N]o one is telling them to be violent protesters, but we’re not going to let these people go through life unscathed,” Rubin told host Joy Reid. “Sarah Huckabee has no right to live a life of no fuss, no muss, after lying to the press, after inciting against the press. These people should be made uncomfortable, and I think that’s a life sentence, frankly.”

So, if at any point in my life I work for someone the media does not approve of, I am to be made miserable for the rest of my life. Not only is that ridiculous, it is dangerous. Who appointed Ms. Rubin the judge of all that is correct? Where is the civility the political left is always talking about?

Much of our news media has become mentally unbalanced. They are like an animal backed into a corner–they know their glory days are ending as Americans get wise to their bias, and they are not going down without a fight.

Conclusions Not Based On Facts

Bearing Arms posted an article today about the game the media plays comparing apples and oranges in order to infringe on our Second Amendment rights. The latest example the media is sighting is Iceland.

This is a recent quote from NBC News:

Like many of his countrymen, Olaf Garðar Garðarsson is eager to get his hands on a rifle.

But he can’t just walk into a store and buy one. Instead, he is sitting through a mandatory four-hour lecture on the history and physics of the firearm.

This is Iceland — the gun-loving nation that hasn’t experienced a gun-related murder since 2007.

“For us, it would be really strange if you could get a license to buy a gun and you had no idea how to handle it,” says Garðarsson, 28, a mechanical engineer. “I would find it very odd if [a gun owner] had never even learned which is the pointy end and which is the trigger end.”

Iceland is a sparsely populated island in the northern Atlantic. Its tiny population of some 330,000 live on a landmass around the size of Kentucky.

St. Louis, Missouri, which has a population slightly smaller than Iceland’s, had 193 homicides linked to firearms last year.

Icelanders believe the rigorous gun laws on this small, remote volcanic rock can offer lessons to the United States.

I have no problem with gun safety classes. I took one when I moved to North Carolina because I realized very quickly that the culture in North Carolina regarding guns was very different from that of Massachusetts. But I took that course by choice. No one forced me to do it. I think those courses are a good idea. I think forcing people to take them is a bad idea. Our gun crimes haven’t come from citizens who would be willing to take those courses. Even if we banned guns totally, criminals would still find a way to get them. Chicago has some of the strictest gun laws in the nation, but it also has a very high rate of murder by gun. The only reason a politician wants to take guns away from citizens or infringe on citizens’ rights to have guns is to increase the power of the government and decrease the power of citizens to prevent government overreach.

The article further reminds us:

Iceland and the United States are very different when it comes to key issues, namely those of culture. Iceland is culturally homogenous, with 94 percent of its population coming from Norse or Celtic roots and only six percent coming from some other group. Because of this, the Icelandic culture is easily dominant, making those who come from other cultures step up and adhere to the social rules of their new nation as much as the civil and criminal rules. The fact that the culture has been there, more or less, for over a thousand years solidifies that in a lot of minds. While that culture has changed over the years, it’s still there, and it drives society.

Meanwhile, the United States is culturally diverse.

What works for Iceland won’t work for America. Our culture is very different. Iceland is essentially a socialist country. As you drive through the countryside, all of the houses look alike–there are no houses that stand out with creative designs. It is a much more homogenous society than America. Our freedom and diversity are part of what makes us great. When the media says that Icelandic gun laws would work in America, they are doing both countries a disservice.

 

It’s Getting Hard To Figure Out Who Is Playing Fair

Sometimes I get very frustrated when I look at news stories and try to figure out who is telling the truth. During the ‘silly season’ which we are currently in, it is sometimes difficult to sort out truth from fiction.

Today’s Daily Caller reported that Media Matters for America (MMFA), a supposedly non-partisan organization which is tax-exempt, is lobbying Congress for support in opposing the Keystone Pipeline.

The article reports:

In an email distributed to the offices of both Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer and Republican Sen. James Inhofe on Wednesday — and obtained by The Daily Caller — Media Matters employee Emilee Pierce sought to “flag” a liberal study by the organization released Thursday in an effort to manipulate coverage of the Keystone pipeline.

The email, addressed to Boxer staffer Mary Kerr and Inhofe staffer Matt Dempsey, sought to “flag that MMFA will be putting out a major, quantitative report on media coverage of KXL tomorrow [Thursday] morning.”

“The study will be similar to our [Environmental Protection Agency] counting study (http://mediamatters.org/research/201106070010) — and will drill home the point the media bought right into Big Oil’s desired frame on KXL,” the email reads, “focusing largely on the (inflated) number of jobs that could be created, without paying due attention to the many other important issues at stake. (Ranchers’ land, spills, climate change, etc.)”

“We are hoping for a big media splash,  but — more importantly — we’re hoping that allies will be able to leverage it to gain favorable coverage,” Pierce continued.

Media Matters for America on its website describes itself as:

Media Matters for America is a Web-based, not-for-profit, 501(c)(3) progressive research and information center dedicated to comprehensively monitoring, analyzing, and correcting conservative misinformation in the U.S. media.

This is not correcting conservative misinformation–this is putting out their own misinformation in concert with members of Congress who should know better. Their tax-exempt status should be investigated.

 

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Evaluating The Pictures You See On The News

Power Line posted a story today examining the role of journalists in reporting a story and the influence they have. Please follow the above link to the story to view the video included in the story (I’m sorry–I can’t figure out how to download the video!).

The video is by Italian photojournalist Ruben Salvadori covering the tension between Israel and the Arabs in the West Bank.

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