Have We Reached Banana Republic Yet?

On Thursday, John Hinderaker posted an article at Power Line Blog about recent legal activities that appear to be political.

The article reports:

A hallmark of banana republics is that those who lose power are apt to wind up in prison, or on the wrong end of a firing squad. Even more advanced countries, like Israel, sometimes have a regrettable tendency to prosecute former political leaders.

It is hard to think of anything more destructive to a democracy, and yet the Democrats are going down that path. It seems clear that they intend to bring criminal charges against President Trump over his keeping some White House documents at Mar-a-Lago–a trivial offense, as far as anyone knows.

And that’s not all. The Department of Justice has issued subpoenas to a large number of people who were associated in some way with the Trump campaign or administration. They generally seek information about efforts to challenge the reported election results in several states. A copy of one of the subpoenas, with the name of the person who was served redacted, is linked below. Take a look at the scope of the documents the subject of the subpoena is required to produce:

594129794-Redacted-Subpoena

In case you are wondering about John Hinderaker’s background in making the above statements, John Hinderaker practiced law for 41 years, enjoying a nationwide litigation practice. He retired from the practice of law at the end of 2015, and is now President of Center of the American Experiment, a think tank headquartered in Minnesota. He and two other lawyers founded Power Line Blog in 2002.

The article concludes:

So far, of course, no criminal investigations have been launched into Joe Biden’s shipping of illegal aliens to many points across the country, often in the dead of night, for the last year and a half.

More examples could be multiplied. Former Trump adviser Steve Bannon likely will go to jail for contempt of Congress, the same offense that former Attorney General Eric Holder was held to have committed by a bipartisan 255–67 vote of the House of Representatives. But unlike Bannon, Holder was not prosecuted. He now makes millions as a partner in a prominent Washington, D.C. law firm.

Given the thorough corruption of the Department of Justice under Merrick Garland, there is a reasonable possibility that the Democrats will move to imprison both Donald Trump and other prominent Republicans. I suppose they think they are secure, because Republicans would never follow such a third-world precedent when they regain power. I don’t know about that. In any event, there is a more fundamental question: are the Democrats trying to trigger a civil war, as they did in 1861? Judging from their actions, I think the question must be taken seriously.

Please follow the link to read the entire article. It is frightening to see how corrupt the Justice Department has become.

When The Problem Comes Home

On Friday, Power Line Blog posted an article about Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’s shipping of illegal aliens to Martha’s Vineyard. Martha’s Vineyard is a beautiful place, and I am sure that the immigrants were glad to land there. Unfortunately, the people who live on Martha’s Vineyard were not particularly excited to see the illegal aliens.

The article reports:

The strategy of Greg Abbott and others to send illegal aliens to sanctuary cities around the country was a stroke of genius. Not that it was original: for at least the last five or six years, a friend has been emailing me to the effect that illegals should be sent to Marin County, Nancy Pelosi’s San Francisco mansion, and, above all, Martha’s Vineyard. That, he said, would bring the open border problem to a screeching halt.

And it may. Ron DeSantis’s master stroke of sending two planeloads of aliens to Martha’s Vineyard has made liberal heads explode. The irony is evident to everyone. These places are “sanctuaries” for illegal aliens, but if they actually see a few of them they panic. Their yards boast “All Are Welcome Here” signs, but it turns out that some are more welcome than others.

Rasmussen finds that most people approve of Governor Abbott’s shipping illegals to sanctuary cities like Chicago and Washington, D.C., by 52% to 36%. Those 36% are diehard Democrats who think it is fine for Texas to try to deal with one million aliens, but an outrage if a liberal city has to take on a few hundred.

Unlike most Americans, liberals don’t appreciate the irony. Their reaction has been priceless.

The meme below is posted at the bottom of the article:

The article concludes:

Members of the West Tisbury Select Board were told about the unexpected development during a Wednesday night meeting at which Town Administrator Jennifer Rand said she’d been receiving “furious texts” from residents, the MV Times reported.

I’ll bet they were furious! Not just anyone can live on Martha’s Vineyard. Maybe the Vineyard folks can ship the unwanted illegal aliens to a more downscale location, like the Hamptons. Or else the illegal immigrants, of whom there are only around 50, could all stay at Barack Obama’s $12 million estate. There is plenty of room there, and I understand his mansion has 10 bathrooms. That would be more than enough. But don’t hold your breath.

In all seriousness, if there is anything that could motivate Democrats to accept United States sovereignty, this is probably it.

UPDATE: I forgot to add that Governor Abbott also bused around 100 illegals to Kamala Harris’s Washington, D.C., residence, the Naval Observatory. This was in response to Harris’s absurd claim that the southern border is “secure.” No way, say the illegals themselves: the border is “open!” Let’s have more of this, until the Democrats say “Uncle.”

UPDATE: Will the Obamas come through for their illegal friends? Some are doubtful:

Labels Matter

On Sunday, John Hinderaker posted an article at Power Line Blog about the double standard used in reporting protests.

The article notes:

The Left has a rather schizophrenic attitude toward protests and demonstrations. Some are wonderful, like the George Floyd riots, which were not, in fact, protests at all. Or like arson and other destruction committed at pro-life facilities. Others are detestable, like the Dutch farmers’ protests, or the French “yellow vests,” or the Canadian truckers. Some protests, too, can only be ignored, like when hundreds of thousands of pro-life citizens show up for their annual march in Washington.

Currently the Left is “demonstrating” against the Supreme Court justices who concurred in the Dobbs decision. A few nights ago, as Scott has noted, left-wingers harassed Justice Brett Kavanaugh and other diners at the Morton’s steak house in D.C. Liberals viewed this effort as a triumph–Kavanaugh reportedly had to exit out a back door–and a pro-Democratic Party organization is now offering cash bounties to anyone who sees a conservative justice out in public in time for a flash mob to assemble.

When asked about such tactics, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre was nonplussed. These are peaceful demonstrations, she replied, the very essence of democracy!

Creating an intimidating environment for political opponents is a sign of a tyrannical government. Protesting political figures at private locations that have nothing to do with their jobs is a form of intimidation.

The article concludes:

And, of course, all of this discussion takes place in the context of at least one assassination attempt against Justice Kavanaugh, the same man who was falsely and relentlessly smeared by the Democratic Party during his confirmation hearings. I think the leaders of the Democratic Party are well aware that their over-the-top attacks on conservative justices, and the kinds of harassment we have seen in recent days, are likely to lead to more assassination attempts. I think leaders of the Democratic Party hope that one or more conservative justices will be assassinated while Joe Biden is still (at least nominally) president, so that he can appoint a left-wing successor. I think this is why Attorney General Merrick Garland refuses to enforce 18 U.S.C. § 1507, which bans demonstrations at the homes of judges that attempt to influence their decisions. And I think this is why the Biden administration cheers on the mobs who harass conservatives in public places.

If this assessment seems harsh, ask yourself: what other hypothesis is consistent with the Democrats’ actions?

So, are protests and demonstrations good or bad? I think they are good–that is to say, consistent with our Constitution’s framework of ordered liberty–when they are peaceful (not “mostly peaceful”), when they are conducted in public places with proper permitting, and when they do not explicitly or implicitly threaten anyone. Citizens have a right to assemble peaceably, not to form themselves into mobs. They do not have a right to commit mayhem, to destroy property, or to threaten, menace, or unreasonably inconvenience others. Unfortunately, the “protests” that the Left likes most usually fall in the latter category. Let’s just hope they don’t result in even more catastrophic violence than we have already witnessed.

So far, the violence we have witnessed seems to be mainly on the liberal side–January 6th was not a totally peaceful protest, but did not include lighting fires, burning business, throwing molotov cocktails into police cars, or killing those trying to protect their businesses. If the violence on the political left, including antifa, BLM, etc., is not reined in, I fear that there will be violent pushback from the political right. That is a recipe for the destruction of America.

As Florida Moves To Protect Young Children…

On July 4, John Hinderaker posted an article at Power Line Blog about the law passed in Florida to protect young school children from inappropriate teaching about sex.

The article reports:

The Biden administration has taken strong exception to Florida’s anti-grooming law, which requires that public school teachers wait until kids are in the fourth grade before inculcating them with LGBTQTrans ideology. Biden intends to fight for grooming to the last man nonbinary person:

[T]he White House claims there will be federal intervention in opposition to the anti-grooming law. Moves for federal mediation include “monitoring” by the Department of Education and calls for people to file formal complaints about the law’s restrictions with the Department’s Office for Civil Rights.

Deprivation of the right to groom five to eight year old children. I suppose we shouldn’t laugh, next time there is a liberal majority on the Supreme Court, they might find such a right hidden where they have come up with abortion and others.

[T]he Biden White House claims the law is “part of a disturbing and dangerous nationwide trend” and is “cynically targeting LGBTQI+ students, educators, and individuals to score political points.”

Children in early grades of elementary school need to be allowed to be children. They need to be allowed to maintain some modicum of childhood innocence.

The article concludes:

Federalism is the forgotten value that inspires our Constitution perhaps more than anything else, and I would argue that it is more essential today than ever. With our country more deeply divided than at any time since the Civil War–and in some ways, the divisions are even wider now than then–disunion is a real possibility. Another possibility is tyranny imposed by one side or the other. The Biden administration is working hard on that one. The optimal solution is to let blue states be blue and red states be red, and to preserve the constitutional powers of the states.

It’s not a perfect answer–before too long, just about everyone would want to live in the red states–but it is infinitely preferable to the alternatives.

It really is time to get rid of the federalization of education. Our schools did much better when they were locally controlled and our children scored much better on achievement tests. The federal intrusion into our schools has been a disaster and needs to end.

What Are We Teaching Our Children?

On Sunday, John Hinderaker posted an article at Power Line Blog about an event held Friday in a Texas gay bar. The event was called Drag the Kids to Pride. Follow the link at your own risk. You have been warned. The article includes two short videos of events at the bar. The activities involved are in no way suitable for the young children in attendance.

The article concludes:

One cannot imagine how parents can expose their young children to such nonsense. In general, children should be pulled out of the inept and failing public schools, which have now added perverse indoctrination to their other sins. But when parents go out of their way to inflict perversity on their kids, one can only despair.

I have no problem with teaching older children to be respectful of people who have an alternative lifestyle (yes, homosexuality is an alternative lifestyle) or to be respectful of their peers who struggle with gender dysphoria. However, these are lifestyles that are not mainstream and should not be encouraged to become mainstream. Before the growth of social media, gender dysphoria was very rare and generally young children outgrew it without any treatment. Unfortunately, social media has created an image of transgender as ‘cool’ and many teenagers having trouble adjusting to puberty are being caught up in the social pressure. This is a problem that will not in any way be helped by taking young children to a Drag the Kids to Pride event.

 

The Real Statistics On School Shootings

What happened in Texas this week is horrific. There were a number of mistakes made that allowed the incident to occur, but that will be sorted out later. It was a horrible event, and everyone’s heart goes out to the parents, grandparents and other family members impacted by the incident. The immediate calls for gun control are simply political grandstanding. Until we deal with mental illness among teenagers, we will not have a solution to gun violence.

On Wednesday, John Hinderaker at Power Line Blog posted an article that provides some historical context to what happened this week.

The article posted a list of school shootings where four or more people are killed since 2000. Here is the list:

2022: 1
2021: 1
2020: 0
2019: 0
2018: 2
2017: 1
2016: 0
2015: 1
2014: 1
2013: 1
2012: 2
2011: 0
2010: 0
2009: 0
2008: 1
2007: 1
2006: 1
2005: 1
2004: 0
2003: 0
2002: 0
2001: 0
2000: 0

A school shooting is a serious thing, but it doesn’t look as if it is a common occurrence.

The article continues:

So mass school shootings are rare, a total of 14 incidents in more than 22 years. In a nation of 320 million, many more people die from bee stings, lighting strikes, and so on; yet, for understandable reasons, school shootings command national attention. But their very rarity makes it hard to know what to do about them, especially since most school shooters expect to die, which makes them more or less impossible to deter. How do you prevent something that happens, in crude terms, once every 480 million man-years?

The “solutions” proposed by Democrats are laughable, obviously intended for political gain rather than practical benefit. Banning “assault rifles,” while likely unconstitutional, would do zero good. In close quarters, handguns are better than rifles, even short-barreled rifles like AR-15s. In the worst school shooting rampage so far, at Virginia Tech, the murderer used handguns. And when the ill-fated ban on “assault weapons” expired in 2004, the homicide rate went down, not up.

But there are things we can do. Would-be mass murderers may be crazy, but they aren’t stupid. They nearly always strike in gun-free zones, including schools, because they want to be sure they are the only one with a firearm. Gun-free zones are an idiotic concept and should be abolished. And if every public school in America fired a diversity consultant and hired an armed guard, they would be vastly safer. Who stands in the way of such practical reform? Mostly the teachers’ unions, which bitterly resist improvements in school security, thus selling out, as they consistently do, the interests of American children.

After noting that the number of school shootings increased after the Covid shutdowns, the article notes:

The only plausible explanation for this increase is that covid-related shutdowns of schools and businesses exacerbated mental health issues in vulnerable young people. There is a great deal of data confirming such an effect, and in the extreme case, shutdowns evidently have have led to a dramatic increase in “active shooters.” Let’s not make that foolish mistake again.

Those solutions aren’t perfect, but they are practical and would reduce the already microscopically-low incidence of mass school shootings.

This certainly represents a more rational approach than taking guns away from law-abiding citizens.

If You Believe This…

On Tuesday, The Washington Times posted an article ‘explaining’ how a “typo” in an email led investigators in 2016 to believe that false allegations linking former President Trump to Russia’s Alfa Bank came from the Department of Justice rather than from Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann.

The article quotes testimony from the trial of Michael Sussmann.

FBI Agent Curtis Heide, who along with agent Allison Sands authored the internal communication, said the inaccuracy, sent out just weeks before the 2016 election, was simply a mistake.

“We may have conflated the Office of the General Counsel and the Justice Department,” Mr. Heide said on the witness stand. “I don’t know how that information got in there.”

On Monday, jurors in the criminal trial of Mr. Sussmann were shown the electronic communication sent in September 2016 by top bureau officials to field agents marking the opening of the case. The communication said the investigation was based on a “referral” from the Justice Department, rather than a tip from Mr. Sussmann.

On Tuesday, John Hinderaker at Power Line Blog reported the following:

I was skeptical that the Sussman prosecution would tell us much that is new, but some significant nuggets have come out. Like this one: “FBI brass were ‘fired up’ about now-debunked Trump-Russia ties.”

FBI leaders, including then-Director James Comey, were “fired up” about a potential connection between the Trump campaign and Russia — which ultimately was proven false, text messages and court testimony revealed Tuesday.

On Sept. 21, 2016, two days after Hillary Clinton campaign attorney Michael Sussmann gave then-FBI General Counsel James Baker info about a supposed digital back channel between the Trump Organization and Moscow-based Alfa Bank, agent Joe Pientka texted colleague Curtis Heide: “People on 7th floor to include Director are fired up about this server.”

So there was zero evidence of any connection between presidential candidate Donald Trump and the Alfa Bank, or any other Russians of note, and all one of Hillary Clinton’s lawyers had to do was waltz into the Bureau with some fabricated “data” and FBI Director James Comey and others were “fired up.” The lust to defeat the interloper Trump and elect Hillary Clinton is palpable.

It’s a shame that they were not nearly so ‘fired up’ over the security problems involved in Hillary Clinton’s secret server.

How Spin Works

The shortage of baby formula is no joke for young parents. The fact that pallets of formula are showing up at the southern border for illegal immigrants is an indication of how much those in Washington care about the welfare of average Americans. However, one interesting aspect of this crisis is the media’s attempt to keep the blame away from the Biden administration. On Saturday, John Hinderaker posted an article at Power Line Blog detailing the media spin.

The article reports:

You can tell the Biden administration has badly bungled the infant formula situation when the best their shills at the Associated Press can do is play the “Republicans pounce” card: “GOP’s new midterm attack: Blaming Biden for formula shortage.”

Republicans aiming to retake control of Congress have already sharpened a message centering around blaming Democrats for high inflation, expensive gas, migrants crossing the U.S.-Mexico border and violent crime in some cities.

But GOP leaders landed on an issue this week that it hopes could prove even more potent: tying President Joe Biden to a shortage in baby formula.
***
Asked if his administration had responded as quickly as it should have, Biden said, ”If we’d been better mind readers, I guess we could’ve. But we moved as quickly as the problem became apparent.”

But the defense by the White House illustrates how finger-pointing at the Biden administration has already spread far and wide among Republicans in Washington, on television and on social media. It’s a new issue for the GOP to hammer at and a way to address families at a time when Democrats believe outrage over the U.S. Supreme Court possibly ending the right to an abortion could galvanize women and other key voters, and thwart or at least lessen a Republican wave in November.

The AP takes up the cudgels for Joe Biden, describing the now-famous photo and video of stacks of formula containers at an illegal immigrant facility at the border:

The AP has not independently verified the photo’s authenticity or when exactly it was captured. Some conservative pundits and news outlets have since spun even greater tall tales from the photo…

“Spun even greater tall tales.” Remember that this is not an opinion piece, it purports to be news reporting.

…with some claiming that they show Biden is shipping “thousands” of pallets of baby formula to the border while parents in the U.S. struggle to find formula.

So how many pallets are there? The AP has no idea.

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said Friday that Border Patrol is “following the law” that requires the government to provide adequate food, specifically formula for children under the age of one, who are detained at the border.

GOP political consultants nonetheless call it a ready-made issue that resonates with voters.

Somehow I don’t think the spin is going to work on young American mothers trying to find formula for their babies.

Food And The Green Movement

The radical environmentalists don’t seem to be aware of the unintended consequences of their extreme goals. Balance seems to be a concept that has long since left the building. On Monday, John Hinderaker posted an article at Power Line Blog illustrating one aspect of the problem.

The article quotes an article from The Guardian on May 1:

Northern Ireland will need to lose more than 1 million sheep and cattle to meet its new legally binding climate emissions targets, according to an industry-commissioned analysis seen by the Guardian.

The large-scale reduction in farm animals comes after the passing of the ​​jurisdiction’s first ever climate act, requiring the farming sector to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 and reduce methane emissions by almost 50% over the same period.

… Analysis by KPMG, commissioned by industry representatives including the Ulster Farmers’ Union (UFU), estimates more than 500,000 cattle and about 700,000 sheep would need to be lost in order for Northern Ireland to meet the new climate targets.

Separate analysis by the UK government’s climate advisers suggests chicken numbers would also need to be cut by 5 million by 2035.

So we are going to destroy the food supply, starve massive numbers of people, and call it saving the planet? For whom are we saving the planet? Is that a question that needs to be asked–do you think the ruling class will starve?

The article at Power Line Blog concludes:

So if you do away with cows, sheep, chickens and pigs, you are basically doing away with agriculture in Northern Ireland. But people will still need to eat. The environmentalists don’t care, of course. But others do:

Although farm labour only accounts for 7% of the country’s labour force, many more depend on the rural economy. Altogether the rural population makes up about 40% of the total in N Ireland. Destroying a large part of farming sector there would be catastrophic for the rural sector. Replacing the meat and dairy sector with, for instance, potatoes would decimate incomes and lead to mass migration out of the countryside.

My guess is that no democracy will actually go through with the idiotic “green” promises that governments have made. I hope not, anyway. As for the autocracies, they have been careful not to promise anything meaningful, and they wouldn’t follow through in any event. This gives them a huge economic and human advantage to the extent that democracies fulfill their irrational commitments.

Do you still believe that environmentalism is actually about the environment?

 

Have You Read “Johnny The Walrus”?

On Thursday, John Hinderaker posted an article at Power Line Blog about a book by Matt Walsh titled, “Johnny the Walrus.”

The article reports:

Matt Walsh has written a book for children called Johnny the Walrus. It satirizes the current transgender craze, which has resulted in an epidemic of irreversible child abuse:

Johnny is a little boy with a big imagination. One day he pretends to be a big scary dinosaur, the next day he’s a knight in shining armor or a playful puppy. But when the internet people find out Johnny likes to make-believe, he’s forced to make a decision between the little boy he is and the things he pretends to be — and he’s not allowed to change his mind.

To the horror of the libs who work at Amazon, Walsh’s book is selling like hotcakes on that platform. Someone leaked a zoom call on which Amazon employees wring their hands over what to do about Johnny the Walrus. I should note that the statements about the book made by the anonymous caller are entirely false. In typical liberal fashion, she just made them up. The people on the call would know they were false if they took the trouble to read Johnny the Walrus, a kids’ board book, which probably would have taken two minutes or less. But of course they didn’t bother. Ideology is everything.

The article includes screenshots of Amazon therapy session for trauma from Matt Walsh’s books. Evidently the thought of anyone writing an allegorical story about the damage that is being done to our children is upsetting to those who support doing the damage. Please follow the link above to read the entire article and view the screenshots.The book is not currently available on Amazon.

One Perspective On Fake News

‘Fake news’ was the expression used by Democrats whenever someone outside the mainstream media reported something that was true (that might damage the Democrat image). Now, as The New York Times admits that the Hunter Biden laptop was real, many Americans are beginning to wonder exactly who is disseminating fake news. On Saturday, John Hinderaker at Power Line Blog posted his evaluation of our current media situation.

The article reminds us of the history of the laptop and reporting on it:

Some observers consider the New York Times’ belated admission that Hunter Biden’s laptop was genuine to be a big deal. I don’t. For one thing, the Times hasn’t acknowledged, and won’t report on, the specific information on the laptop that told the story of Joe Biden’s corruption.

Moreover, there was never any doubt about the genuineness of the laptop and the data it contained. The owner of the repair shop had a receipt with Hunter Biden’s signature on it, the laptop contained a large number of self-validating videos and photos of Hunter in various compromising situations, and the authenticity of emails on the laptop was confirmed by the presence of the same emails in other accounts. The idea that the laptop was “Russian disinformation” was a desperate and absurd invention intended to fool those who paid no attention, and those who wanted to be fooled.

The laptop saga was really a continuation of the Russia collusion hoax. As in the larger case of the collusion hoax, those who perpetrated the “Russian disinformation” fraud are unrepentant. The Times now implicitly admits that it was wrong to ignore or impugn the evidence of the laptop, but has it issued any corrections to, or retractions of, its reporting? No. Has it launched an investigation into how it could have been “fooled”? Of course not.

The New York Times was never ‘fooled.’ What they were was part of a campaign to elect Joe Biden.

The article concludes:

The New York Times expresses no regret because it doesn’t regret what it did. The Times isn’t a newspaper, it is a mouthpiece. Its purpose was obvious. It was the same purpose that animated many other news outlets, Twitter, and the 51 lying spies: they were trying to get Joe Biden elected president.

That effort succeeded. Lying about the laptop was just one of many corners they cut to achieve their desired objective, but poll data suggest that it was one of the most important. If voters had realized how demonstrably corrupt Joe Biden is–no one has ever bribed Hunter Biden–polls suggest that Donald Trump would have been re-elected. Liberal news outlets are proud of the fact that they acted together to prevent that awful possibility. If it took some lies to accomplish the mission, so what?

Thus, I attribute little significance to the New York Times’ casual acknowledgement that it blew the Hunter laptop story–really, it blew the 2020 election, if you think the Times is trying to report objectively on the news. But of course no one thinks that. For the Times, Twitter, and countless other liberal institutions, their lies about Joe Biden and Donald Trump accomplished the intended mission. There will be no apologies, no regrets–only, behind the scenes, discreet high fives.

The lies about the laptop achieved their purpose. Anything said now is moot.

What Security Does Europe Actually Have?

On Sunday, John Hinderaker posted an article at Power Line Blog wondering what protection against Russian invasion does Europe have from NATO or the European Union. It’s a very timely question.

The article notes:

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has caused a number of European countries–probably all of them–to reconsider their military defense postures. If Russia attacks them, will they be able to resist? And whom can they count on to come to their aid?

Responses vary. Germany is talking about abandoning its post-WWII de-militarization. France, in Gaullist tradition, wants the EU to take the lead on security. Others rely on a presumed airtight NATO guarantee of military assistance.

Sweden is an interesting case. Sweden is not a member of NATO, although it has collaborated closely with NATO’s central command. Instead, Sweden has allied itself with the U.S. and, to a lesser extent, the U.K.

This is a portion of the interview with Björn Fägersten, head of the Europe program at the Swedish Institute of International Affairs, included in the article:

Does the EU’s mutual defence clause have a similar effect to Nato’s Article 5?

Björn Fägersten: In a purely legal sense they are equivalent – in some ways the EU is a bit sharper. But on the other hand, the EU’s clause has a sub-clause that makes clear that it doesn’t affect member states’ individual choices on security policy, for instance for those countries that are neutral.

A key difference between the EU and Nato is that the EU has no real apparatus. Nato has a joint military headquarters, SHAPE, but the EU doesn’t have an equivalent.

Within the EU there are also expectations that Nato will be at the centre of European planning – most EU countries are members. In the EU’s Global Strategy from 2016 it is made clear that Nato is the cornerstone of the EU’s defence.

Looking to the future, many in the EU, not least Macron, have long spoken about the need for strategic autonomy, where Europe will take a more independent line in defence from the US. Last week Germany announced a huge increase in defence spending. How will that change the equation for Sweden?

BF: If in the long term Europe starts taking greater responsibility while the US takes the main responsibility for handling China, that would change Sweden’s calculation. Sweden would like there to be an American interest in its security, but if, for example, a new president was elected in the US in 2024 who had a more doubtful approach to European security, Sweden would be forced to rapidly reevaluate its defence strategy.

The article concludes:

Call me a cynical lawyer, but does “such action as it deems necessary” really obligate the U.S., or anyone else, to a full military response to Russian aggression in Europe? Might “such action” merely encompass economic sanctions in the event of a Russian invasion of, say, Lithuania?

I suppose it is best if Russia’s leaders assume that Article 5 represents an airtight mutual security pact, but it is easy to imagine a weaselly or mentally challenged president–or, perhaps, one who is uniquely focused on American self-interest–going back on 70 years of interpretation of Article 5 and more or less abandoning our European allies. No doubt that is something that they, too, are imagining.

Which I think is probably to the good. Donald Trump was right: it is long past time for powerful European countries, including Germany, to look to their own defense, even if in cooperation with us. And, of course, the more able they are to defend themselves against Russian aggression, the more likely they are to receive military help from their NATO allies, including us, should the time come.

There is value in working together and providing mutual aid, but there is also a lot of value in standing on your own two feet.

A Lot Of People Saw This Coming

There have been a number of arguments to legalize recreational marijuana over the years. I am not going to get into the right or wrong of legalization, but I am going to post an article about a not-so-inevitable outcome of that legalization in California.

On Saturday, John Hinderaker at Power Line Blog posted an article about some recent problems in California that are the result of legalizing marijuana so that the state government could tax it.

The article reports:

How many industries have been damaged or destroyed by high taxes and excessive regulation? A lot. But I have mixed feelings about this one: California cannabis industry on brink as buyers return to dealers.

The cannabis industry in California is on the brink of collapse because of high taxes and onerous regulations that have burdened legal operators and allowed illegal growers to flourish, campaigners have warned.
***
About 75 per cent of cannabis consumed in the state comes from illegal sources, industry figures say. They blame taxes, too much regulation and a failure to tackle illegal competition, which is free from red tape and able to offer cannabis at much lower prices.

Marijuana is cheap and easy to grow. Legal sellers complain that police do little to enforce the laws against illegal dope, but once the government declares marijuana to be A-OK, there isn’t much reason to prioritize a crackdown on those who sell a legal product but dodge taxes. The case against legalized marijuana having been abandoned, legal sellers are in somewhat the same position as the taxi companies who tried to get Uber and Lyft banned in various cities.

The article notes that the marijuana industry is trying to get tax relief. Obviously, if legalizing marijuana was done to raise tax revenue, seeking tax relief goes against the whole reason for legalizing it. Having the police crackdown on people who are growing marijuana at home for their own personal use makes about as much sense as arresting someone for growing five tobacco plants in their backyard.

Hopefully, This Will Be A Futile Effort

Yesterday John Hinderaker at Power Line Blog posted an article illustrating how the mainstream media would try to discredit what the truck drivers in Canada are doing.

The article reports:

You no doubt are aware of the protest being staged by thousands of Canadian truck drivers who have now converged on Ottawa. The truckers began by protesting against a vaccination mandate for truckers crossing the U.S. border, but it has grown into a movement opposing extreme and irrational anti-covid measures, and promoting freedom generally.

Naturally, the liberal press is horrified. You likely have seen this bizarre editorial cartoon that appeared in–where else–the Washington Post:

When I first saw the cartoon, I literally did not understand it. Someone had to explain that the Post’s cartoonist is calling the truckers who are demonstrating on behalf of freedom fascists. Freedom is slavery, after all.

The article goes on to note that the liberal media is hoping that the protest will turn violent (giving them further reason to condemn it).

The article quotes The New York Times:

Thousands of protesters on foot, many carrying handmade signs on hockey sticks, wandered through the parked vehicles and the slow-moving traffic or gathered on the lawn in front of Parliament. Some of them carried Canadian flags upside down; at least one flag had swastikas drawn on it.

The article notes:

Liberals always try to imply that if someone draws a swastika it means that person is pro-Nazi. Actually, it means (in this context, at least) that the person is accusing the Canadian government of using Nazi-like tactics. I don’t agree, but let’s not smear the protesters by inverting the intent behind their signs.

The article concludes:

Here is more on the truckers’ protest from the BBC.

Defence Minister Anita Anand said the incidents were “beyond reprehensible”.

No incident described was even remotely violent. This one is darkly humorous:

Ottawa police said in a Twitter post that “several” investigations were now under way into the “desecration” of a number monuments in the capital city….

So now the Left is against desecrating monuments! I thought it had become more or less compulsory.

Putting aside whatever you may think about vaccination mandates, the hostility of the press’s response to any movement that expresses a desire for freedom is striking.

The ruling class does not like it when people begin to wake up.

When The Laws Of Physics Get In The Way

On Sunday, John Hinderaker at Power Line Blog posted an article about the problems with the government’s push toward green energy. The main problem is the laws of physics. Those laws are unavoidable and unbreakable.

The article quotes Isaac Orr at American Experiment:

It is a well-understood phenomenon that wind generation in the Midwest essentially disappears when the mercury dips below -22° F. Electricity generation from wind turbines drops under these circumstances because wind turbines are programmed to automatically shut off when the temperatures get this cold to prevent them from breaking.

The article at American Experiment includes the following graph:

The article at Power Line Blog concludes:

The basic point here is that wind energy shows up only sporadically and unpredictably, and tends to disappear when it is needed the most. The worst time for a blackout is when the mercury is at -20, as it was yesterday where I live. Note where electricity was actually coming from in the chart above: coal, the dark brown line, was the principal source, while natural gas, the light brown line, is only slightly behind. These are the sources that liberals want to do away with. Wind was flighty; sometimes it worked, but often it didn’t. Is that how you want your light switches to operate? And if you can find solar energy on this chart, a technology in which many billions of dollars have been invested, your eyes are sharper than mine.

On energy, we are in a race against time. We need to inform voters before the lavishly-funded “green” energy lobby destroys our electrical grid and our economy, at great profit to them but at ruinous loss to the rest of us.

Please read the article posted in 2014 to see what happened when Spain decided to rely strictly on green energy. Recently the European Union seems to have had a small awakening regarding the perils of relying solely on green energy (article here).

 

Do You Trust The Vaccine?

This is not an article supporting or not supporting the coronavirus vaccine. Everyone has the right to make their own decision on that. It is an article reminding people about the statements made by leading Democrats about the vaccine during the Trump administration.

John Hinderaker at Power Line Blog posted an article yesterday with screenshots of tweets from Democrats about the coronavirus vaccine during the Trump administration. I will post a few of these screenshots, but I suggest you follow the link to the article to see the entire selection. Then ask yourself why there are so many vaccine skeptics.

The article reports:

The article concludes:

Did the Democrats’ relentless attacks on the vaccines that were expedited by President Trump get some people killed? I suppose they probably did. But I am not aware of a single Democrat who has expressed remorse for discouraging people from taking advantage of the vaccines, or who has acknowledged their party’s 180 degree turnabout as soon as the election was over. I think the Democrats’ view is that no one should ever have taken their anti-vaccine stance seriously. We should have known it was all just politics, and once the hated Donald Trump was out of they way, we should all have lined up for our shots.

That certainly is how I saw it, and I was among the first to get vaccinated. Sadly, there apparently are a few people who still take the Democrats seriously.

As I said, this article is meant to be neither pro-vaccine or anti-vaccine, it is just posted to show you some of the history and to show one man’s opinion.

Good News For America

John Hinderaker posted an article today at Power Line Blog about a recent statement by Senator Joe Manchin.

The article reports:

Now that they control Congress, although by the barest of margins, the Democrats can do considerable damage. But for their long dreamt-of power grab–adding more states, packing the Supreme Court, institutionalizing electoral fraud–they need to break the filibuster.

Ending the filibuster would require the votes of all 50 Democratic senators. That has always seemed unlikely, and yesterday Joe Manchin made it official in an op-ed in a local newspaper. Manchin said that he will not vote for H.R. 1, the Universal Voter Fraud Act, nor will he vote to end the filibuster…

Yesterday Senator Manchin posted an editorial in the Charleston Gazette-Mail explaining his vote.

Here are some highlights from that article:

The right to vote is fundamental to our American democracy and protecting that right should not be about party or politics. Least of all, protecting this right, which is a value I share, should never be done in a partisan manner.

…Unfortunately, we now are witnessing that the fundamental right to vote has itself become overtly politicized. Today’s debate about how to best protect our right to vote and to hold elections, however, is not about finding common ground, but seeking partisan advantage. Whether it is state laws that seek to needlessly restrict voting or politicians who ignore the need to secure our elections, partisan policymaking won’t instill confidence in our democracy — it will destroy it.

As such, congressional action on federal voting rights legislation must be the result of both Democrats and Republicans coming together to find a pathway forward or we risk further dividing and destroying the republic we swore to protect and defend as elected officials.

Democrats in Congress have proposed a sweeping election reform bill called the For the People Act. This more than 800-page bill has garnered zero Republican support. Why? Are the very Republican senators who voted to impeach Trump because of actions that led to an attack on our democracy unwilling to support actions to strengthen our democracy? Are these same senators, whom many in my party applauded for their courage, now threats to the very democracy we seek to protect?

The truth, I would argue, is that voting and election reform that is done in a partisan manner will all but ensure partisan divisions continue to deepen.

…I believe that partisan voting legislation will destroy the already weakening binds of our democracy, and for that reason, I will vote against the For the People Act. Furthermore, I will not vote to weaken or eliminate the filibuster. For as long as I have the privilege of being your U.S. senator, I will fight to represent the people of West Virginia, to seek bipartisan compromise no matter how difficult and to develop the political bonds that end divisions and help unite the country we love.

American democracy is something special, it is bigger than one party, or the tweet-filled partisan attack politics of the moment. It is my sincere hope that all of us, especially those who are privileged to serve, remember our responsibility to do more to unite this country before it is too late.

Interesting. I don’t mean to by cynical (but I am good at it), but considering the pressure Senator Manchin and Senator Sinema have been under to support the For the People Act, it may be that both of them have put the interests of America above their party or personal interest. If that is the case, that is wonderful. But there is another possible scenario. It is quite possible that they are not the only Democrats who don’t support the For the People Act. In that case, their statements may be an excuse for the Democrat leadership not to bring the vote to the floor. In that case, no one is on the record for supporting it. Also, Senator Manchin is a Senator from a state that voted 68 percent for President Trump in 2020. If the bill was not going to pass anyway, this puts Senator Manchin in a very positive light. I wonder if he would have voted against it if all of the other Democrats were willing to vote for the bill.

 

A Cease-Fire Will Be Called If Israel Is Winning

For a short time in 2020, it looked as if peace might break out in the Middle East. Instead, the ending of the policies that were moving in the direction of peace has brought us war. It is interesting to see the divide in America regarding this war. Yesterday John Hinderaker posted an article at Power Line Blog about what is happening in America and in the Middle East.

The article reports:

The current round of violence that was initiated by Hamas firing thousands of rockets into Israel is depressing on a number of fronts, not least because we are once again hearing brain-dead shibboleths from the White House. After a four-year respite under President Trump, ignorance again reigns. Today Jen Psaki was pressed by White House reporters on why President Biden had not yet called for a cease fire. She bobbed and weaved, saying that “we all know” that the only way to end violence is “for there to be a two-state solution.”

Really? How do we all know that? The Arabs were offered a two-state solution in 1948, and they turned it down, preferring to try to destroy Israel and kill the Jews. They have made the same choice consistently over the last 73 years. And if Gaza were a “state,” why would Hamas be any less prone to launch missiles against Israel?

The article notes that President Biden has called for a cease-fire and asked Israel to make every effort to protect innocent civilians.

The article concludes:

This is the weird false equivalence that we see all the time where Israel is concerned. How about if the world’s “leaders” demand that Hamas “make every effort to ensure the protection of [Israel’s] innocent civilians”? But that wouldn’t make sense, since the whole point of Hamas’s terrorist offensive is to kill innocent civilians. The Palestinians have sown the wind, and yet the world’s prime concern is that they not reap the whirlwind. Why?

Similarly, world “leaders” tell Israelis that their response to Hamas’s thousands of rockets must be “proportionate,” which means, apparently, that no more Palestinians than Israelis should die. Evidently Israelis are supposed to downgrade their own competence to match Hamas’s primitive, if brutal, rocketry.

This is a standard never before known to warfare. If you are attacked by an enemy, it is appropriate to respond with overwhelming force so as to devastate your enemy and disable him from further attacks, not at the least cost to your enemy, but at the least cost to your own citizens. See, e.g., the U.S. response to Japanese and German aggression in World War II. Hamas started this war, and Israel has every right to inflict maximum damage until it is satisfied that Hamas can never again pose a threat.

Of course, for reasons I will never understand, that is not how things play out in the Middle East. I suppose Israel will stop too soon, under pressure from “world leaders” and public opinion, and leave Hamas more or less intact to fight again another day. This is, I think, the real reason why the “cycle of violence” that is such a cliche in the region persists.

The definition of insanity is ‘doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.’ That is exactly what the Biden administration is doing in resurrecting the failed Middle East policies of the Obama administration. Until Hamas stops lobbing rockets at Israeli civilians, there will not be peace. Until the world stops trading with Iran who is supplying the rockets, there will not be peace. Meanwhile, if Israel begins to win this war, the United Nations will demand a cease-fire. That’s how things work in the Middle East.

An Interesting Perspective

John Hinderaker has a very interesting perspective on the Covid-19 epidemic. He posted an article at Power Line Blog that explains his theory that Covid is now saving lives.

The article reports:

More precisely, fewer Americans are now dying than would be the case if the Wuhan virus did not exist. Total mortality in the U.S., per this CDC chart, is sinking like a stone and is now below demographic projections:

This is the chart:

So what in the world is happening?

The article explains:

The last two weeks of data are incomplete, but the point is obvious. A large majority of “covid deaths” were people who were both elderly and already very sick. My own review of data from thousands of death certificates in Minnesota confirms that in most cases, given the number of severe conditions itemized as contributors to a “covid death”–i.e, one in which the word “covid” appears on the death certificate–it seems remarkable that the person was still alive at all.

I think the mortality statistics over the next couple of years will confirm that in most cases, people who died with “covid” on their death certificates would have died, in any event, in a matter of months or perhaps a year or two. This is why we are now seeing mortality dip below demographic norms: people who otherwise would have died in April 2021 died in, say, October 2020 instead. If this is the case, it will expose the irrationality of devastating the lives of younger and healthy people through shutdowns, school closings and mask mandates, while those who were at meaningful risk were almost exclusively those who, as one doctor put it, had one foot in the grave and the other on a banana peel.

The truth will eventually come out.

The Harm Caused By Good Intentions

John Hinderaker posted an article at Power Line Blog today about the harm done by environmentalists.

The article reports:

The damage done by contemporary environmentalism is a big topic. For now I want to note two important instances that are on my mind because they are fronts on which my organization, Center of the American Experiment, is battling self-interested or misguided environmentalists.

Environmentalists cause great damage by blocking needed development, including exploitation of mineral resources. This is grossly hypocritical, since the principal goal of today’s environmental movement is to replace fossil fuels by electrifying everything, while getting the bulk of our electricity from wind and solar power. Apart from being impossible, the amount of mining that would need to be done to supply the necessary electrical hardware and batteries would dwarf anything in human history. At the same time, however, environmentalists refuse to allow mining of the needed materials–copper, nickel, cobalt and others–here in the United States. In effect, they insist on massive environmental degradation, only not in their back yards.

…At GreenEnergyFails.com, you can watch videos that explain the Texas blackouts, and the site includes a lengthy and utterly definitive explanation of why those blackouts were, contrary to the desperate assertions of the environmental lobby, caused by Texas’s excessive reliance on unreliable wind and solar energy.

Like other organs of the Left, the environmental lobby is backed by an extraordinary amount of money. This is understandable, as enormous profits are being made on the “green” energy chimera by utilities and by wind and solar companies (many foreign-owned) that feed at the government trough.

Perhaps more significant is that the environmental movement, in its early stage, actually did some good. As Steve Hayward documented over a period of years, it contributed to a remarkable improvement in air and water quality across the U.S. That cleanup was a great achievement for which the environmental movement can take partial credit. Unfortunately, the good will that was created decades ago continues to boost environmentalism, even though in its current manifestations the movement is actually hurting not only public safety and our peoples’ livelihoods, but also our environment.

The search for the perpetual motion machine was alive and well during the Middle Ages. It looks like it is back with us again.

Hong Kong Has Lost Its Freedom

I am sure that the headline above is not news to anyone who has been paying attention, but there has been another nail in the coffin of freedom in Hong Kong.

The London Times reported the following today:

China’s grip on the city tightened yesterday when its parliament unanimously approved new election rules that make it almost impossible for democracy activists to run for office.

The National People’s Congress voted 2,895-0, with one abstention, for the changes that will give Beijing a veto on candidates deemed unpatriotic.

…Beijing said the changes were necessary to return Hong Kong to its constitutional order after mass protests, and that patriots would be able to stand.

…Zhang Xiaoming, from the Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office, said that the “chaos” of recent years showed that the city’s electoral system had “clear loopholes and shortcomings”.

John Hinderaker at Power Line Blog commented on the election changes in Hong Kong:

Our electoral system had “clear loopholes and shortcomings” too, as revealed by the election of Donald Trump. The Democrats are moving to close those “loopholes” via H.R. 1 and other measures intended to assure that only those approved by them can be elected in the future.

The rest of the Times article is devoted to the ongoing exodus of freedom-loving Hong Kongers to Australia and the U.K. Here in America, I am not sure where we will flee if the Democrats succeed in curing the “loopholes and shortcomings” in our electoral system.

I am also unsure of where to flee. Does anyone know of a small island in the Caribbean that might be for sale?

The Obvious Question

Yesterday John Hinderaker posted an article at Power Line Blog titled, “Who’s Crazy?”

The article notes:

Democrats are busily trying to portray Republicans as crazy extremists and conspiracy theorists. Marjorie Greene is the latest target of this campaign, and of course the Dems continue to milk the January 6 D.C. mini-riot for all it is worth, and more. (Meanwhile, they have no interest in what would seem to be the real story, the inexplicable breakdown of security at the Capitol. And, contrary to the Democrats’ usual practice, the identity of the officer who shot and killed an unarmed woman, Ashli Babbitt, is a closely guarded secret.)

But where do we look for maximum craziness? How about Maxine Waters, who says that President Trump “should be charged with premeditated murder” (of whom?) because he was involved in “advance planning about the invasion” at the Capitol. Talk about a conspiracy theory! But Waters’ claims aren’t much crazier than those of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who asserted that Ted Cruz was trying to get her killed.

There was a time when making such reckless, extreme, and–to say the least!–unsupported claims about one’s political opponents would have been considered far out of bounds by pretty much everyone. No longer.

It’s time those Democrats who are accusing President Trump of inciting violence look in the mirror. Some of the insanity and lack of civility coming from Democrats in recent years in appalling. It’s time the Democrat party takes responsibility for the statements and actions of their member.

What We Teach Our Children Matters

Yesterday John Hinderaker at Power Line Blog posted an article about the draft publication of the Minnesota social studies standards. The standards are available for public comment. The article cites information found in an article at the Center of the American Experiment website.

The article at Power Line Blog reports:

WORLD/U.S. HISTORY

There are several key pieces of our world and nation’s history that are missing when compared with the 2011 social studies standards.

Missing Benchmarks

* World War I—benchmarks on the social, political and economic causes of the war; nations involved, major political and military figures, key battles; political impact (including formation of the League of Nations)

* World War II—benchmarks on the social, political and economic causes of the war, and main turning points; nations involved, major political and military figures, key battles; timeline of key events leading to WWII

* The Holocaust (including references to the Nazi regime and Jews)

* Rise and effects of communism and socialism; Communist Revolution

* American Revolution—benchmarks on timeline of the major events and turning points of the revolution, including the involvement of other nations and the reasons for American victory; identifying historically significant people during the period of the revolution (Examples: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Elizabeth Freeman)

* Civil War—benchmarks on timeline of the key events of the war; causes of the war; major political and military events; main ideas of the debate over slavery and states’ rights and how they resulted in major political compromises and ultimately war
***

I need someone to explain to me how you can teach WWII without teaching about the Holocaust, Nazis, and Jews.

These are just a few examples from the article. Please follow the link to read the entire article. It offers insight as to the reasons our children don’t understand the freedom and heritage they have in America and why many are willing to trade that freedom for the slavery of socialism.

Insight Into The Radical Left

Radical Son is a book by David Horowitz that I read many years ago. There is now a new edition with an updated preface by David Horowitz. Yesterday John Hinderaker at Power Line Blog posted an article about the updated preface. Please follow the link to read the entire article. It provides a lot of insight into the thinking of the radical political left.

The article contains the entire preface. I am simply posting the last part here in the hopes that you will read it in its entirety at Power Line Blog:

In his narrative, Forbes makes clear that he regards the inconveniences he suffered as a result of his crimes as an injustice to him. He exhibits no remorse for his victims and no appreciation for the short jail time he spent for plotting the assassination of Crystal Gray or killing his friend, or for the cold-blooded, botched execution attempt which ruined the life of the ambulance driver, Nelson Malloy, who tried to help him. The fantasy of the “revolution” he served by committing violent crimes, mainly against vulnerable black people who were not political, remains for Forbes a source of inordinate pride. Equally revealing is his continuing adoration for the criminal who recruited him to the Panthers when he was sixteen, made him a gangster, murdered an eighteen-year-old black woman, and ordered him to assassinate another.

Flores Forbes’s story is emblematic of what America’s political culture has become. His title today is Associate Vice President of Strategic Planning and Program Implementation at Columbia University, where he is a pillar of the academic community. Meanwhile, those of us who worked to bring the criminal reality of the “revolutionary” charade to light are persona non-grata among administrators and faculty at Columbia, which happens to be my own alma mater.

And this travesty is not confined to one Ivy League school. There are academic tributes and shrines to Panther gangsters at UCLA, Stanford, UC Santa Cruz, UC Berkeley, the Smithsonian, and numerous similar institutions across the country. This is a pretty fair measure of the Left’s institutional ascendance in America in the wake of the mayhem its radical activists have created and the atrocities they have committed.

Radical Son was written as a witness to the dark undercurrents of American politics and to their enduring power in the nation’s life. It has definitely had an impact. Whether the revelations contained in its narrative can seriously affect the course of this history is unlikely. But as long as the book has open-minded readers, the possibility exists that new generations will be able to put together these lessons with others, and perhaps affect the outcome. Or maybe just one individual will have been affected by this book in such a way as to avoid experiences as painful as I had to endure. That would be sufficient reward for the ordeals of writing it.

In case you are unaware, David Horowitz grew up in New York as a ‘red diaper baby.’ That was the name given to the children of members of the Communist party in America. His parents were school teachers. Let that sink in. His indoctrination into radical political beliefs at home was probably not a lot different than the indoctrination his parents’ students received. I strongly recommend reading Radical Son to understand how the radical left thinks and what their goals are. It is eye-opening.

 

This Is Not Good For Our Country

John Hinderaker posted an article at Power Line Blog today about the lawsuit brought by the Trump campaign against the State of Pennsylvania. The law firm handling one aspect of the case has been pressured by anti-Trump types to withdraw from participation in the lawsuit.

The article reports:

A law firm representing the Trump campaign in its challenges to the Pennsylvania election results gave notice that it’s withdrawing from one of the cases.

Lawyers with Porter Wright Morris & Arthur LLP submitted a filing late Thursday stating they were withdrawing as counsel in a federal suit seeking to block Pennsylvania from certifying its vote. No reason was given. In a statement issued Friday, the firm confirmed the filing but did not say why it was exiting the case.

The Trump campaign issued the following statement:

“Leftist mobs descended upon some of the lawyers representing the President’s campaign and they buckled,” said Tim Murtaugh, communications director for the campaign. “If the target were anyone but Donald Trump, the media would be screaming about injustice and the fundamental right to legal representation. The President’s team is undeterred and will move forward with rock-solid attorneys to ensure free and fair elections for all Americans.”

The article concludes:

Not many years ago, every terrorist in Guantanamo Bay was represented by one of a group of America’s top law firms. For free. No one batted an eye. Now, the President of the United States is having trouble getting lawyers to represent him in asserting perfectly legitimate claims. Some dictator.

This is the latest instance of the most troubling trend in American culture, leftist bullying. Rare is the company (or, as in this case, the law firm) with the courage to stand up against it. It is a serious threat to the liberty of all Americans.

Regardless of your political leanings, you need to look at this carefully. If a law firm can be bullied into not representing someone because of political pressure, what chance do you and I have for equal justice under the law? These are mafia tactics that will only get worse if they are not stopped.