Patterico's Pontifications

6/24/2018

Fever Swampers of the Right Smear Office of Special Counsel Head Henry Kerner

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 3:15 pm

President Trump’s Special Counsel Henry Kerner is a friend of mine. I have known him for over 20 years. He is a former colleague at the District Attorney’s Office who helped get me my job there.

I attended a farewell party for Henry when he left Los Angeles and the D.A.’s office to go to Washington. Henry is a lifelong staunch conservative who went to Washington as part of the Tea Party revolution. Now he has been confirmed as the head of Trump’s Office of Special Counsel — an office that protects federal whistleblowers and addresses Hatch Act violations, among other things.

In the reports concerning the scandal in which the IRS targeted Tea Party organization, Henry was deeply involved in the dissent to the majority report that laid out the reasons that the IRS’s targeting was so repulsive and wrong. As the Washington Post noted at the time:

Republicans offered dissenting conclusions in the Senate report, determining that the TIGTA audit was “accurate and proper” and saying that 83 percent of the targeted groups were right-leaning. “Simply stated, the IRS treated these conservative and Tea Party groups differently from other non-conservative groups,” the GOP members said.

Henry is the last person in the world who would ever be a part of targeting Tea Party groups. He was instrumental in calling out the IRS for what it did.

Imagine my surprise, then, to see my friend labeled by the nutcase far-right Conservative Treehouse fever swamp blog as a “deep state fixer.” I won’t repeat their nonsense, but it is standard far-right conspiracy theorizing about the “deep state” — only this time I know the guy involved, and I know it’s not true.

Conservative BananaHouse doesn’t bother to tell you that the report from the minority, in which Henry was involved, was on the side of the Tea Party groups. They make it sound like Henry was investigating himself or something, which is laughable.

Fever swamper Jim Hoft printed a similarly irresponsible post but has issued a semi-retraction. Hoft originally reported this story with a breathless headline labeling Henry a “D.C. Hatchet Man” — as you can see in their original URL:

https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2018/06/stunning-dc-hatchet-man-behind-coordinated-irs-attacks-on-tea-party-is-currently-in-charge-of-all-dc-special-investigations/

But if you follow the link, you’ll see that Hoft now reports Henry’s side, after Henry spoke to Hoft:

Henry told us the report is inaccurate. The Tea Party targeting occurred before the 2012 election and the report in question by the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations was published in September 2014. Henry’s name and Senator McCain’s name were on the report but the Republican minority at the time refused to sign Carl Levin’s report and released a report of their own.

Henry worked for Rep. Darrell Issa and was a member of the Harvard Republican club. Henry currently serves as head of the Office of Special Counsel.

Henry disputes this week’s reports. He says the IRS targeting scandal was strictly a Democrat endeavor.

Henry Kerner agreed with The Gateway Pundit that Judicial Watch is an excellent organization.

The allegations originated with Judicial Watch, who released notes from an IRS staffer purporting to quote Henry as saying that “maybe the solution [for groups abusing their 501(c)(4) status] is to audit so many that it is financially ruinous”:

Henry Kerner asked how to get to the abuse of organizations claiming section 501(c)(4) but designed to be primarily political. Lois Lerner said the system works, but not in real time. Henry Kerner noted that these organizations don’t disclose donors. Lois Lerner said that if they don’t meet the requirements, we can come in and revoke, but it doesn’t happen timely. Nan Marks said if the concern is that organizations engaging in this activity don’t disclose donors, then the system doesn’t work. Henry Kerner said that maybe the solution is to audit so many that it is financially ruinous. Nikole noted that we have budget constraints. Elise Bean suggested using the list of organizations that made independent expenditures. Lois Lerner said that it is her job to oversee it all, not just political campaign activity.

Judicial Watch takes the comments out of context to suggest — perhaps as payback for OSC’s finding that Kellyanne Conway violated the Hatch Act? Who knows? — that Henry was somehow complicit in the targeting of Tea Party groups. Unfortunately, probably because of Judicial Watch’s unfair portrayal, even Larry O’Connor at the Washington Times — not a fever swamper — mistakenly alleged that Henry was talking about Tea Party groups.

A new report from Judicial Watch reveals a concerted effort from Sen. John McCain’s office to urge the IRS under Lois Lerner to strike out against political advocacy groups, including tea party organizations.

This is badly wrong, and Larry presents zero evidence in support of that allegation — and the timing doesn’t support it at all, which Larry would realize if he stopped to think about it for a moment.

Nothing in the quoted passage from the IRS staffer’s notes suggests that Henry was talking about Tea Party groups — and Lois Lerner’s admission that the IRS had previously targeted these groups came just ten days later, meaning that the IRS targeting had long since happened before Henry asked the question (assuming the notes are accurate, which I do not). Obviously, the years-long targeting did not take place in ten days. So what was Henry talking about? Even though the IRS/Tea Party scandal was an outrage, there are definitely non-profits that abuse their status as supposedly apolitical outfits (can you say ACORN?) and a new staffer asking questions about what to do about such abusive groups is hardly evidence of targeting groups for improper reasons.

This is truly Bizarro World. Best of all, even though Senator McCain was infuriated by the Tea Party scandal, this total nothingburger has been used to make McCain sound like he was part of the Lerner brigade. Here are the top comments at a post on the controversy at PJMedia:

McCain Comments at PJM

Nothing makes a made-up controversy better than sprinkling a nice dose of evil on top.

Jane, stop this crazy thing.

UPDATE: A few more points that just cement how ridiculous this all is. First, pull up the notes from the IRS staffer and look for the words “Tea Party” or “conservative.” Do you see them? I can’t find them. Second of all, look how many people are there, and look at all the questions Henry is asking. He is clearly learning about this process for the first time. Even if you didn’t know Henry and his conservatism the way I do, the notion that he is walking into a large group of strangers and making an improper suggestion to target Tea Party groups, when he is obviously meeting these people for the first time, is ludicrous.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

Should Other Countries Target Trump’s Businesses?

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 9:02 am

Business Insider has an article that claims that countries upset about Trump’s tariffs are thinking about targeting Trump’s businesses in retaliation:

President Donald Trump’s headlong push toward a trade war is prompting unprecedented responses from countries around the world and blowback from top US allies.

In the past three months, Trump has hit countries around the world with a 25% tariff on steel and a 10% tariff on aluminum exports to the US. The decision prompted a swift response from US allies, including retaliatory tariffs and a radical departure in treatment from other formerly friendly foreign leaders — from Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to French President Emmanuel Macron.

But so far these responses have done little to deter Trump from moving forward with his trade agenda, prompting the the consideration of an out-of-the-box response for an out-of-the-box president.

Op-eds in The Houston Chronicle and the Canadian news magazine Maclean’s suggested the only way to quell the rising trade tensions is to strike at Trump’s businesses. While some countries, such as China, have appeared to try and sway the president through treating his family’s businesses more favorably, countries have not made moves to curtail the businesses’ activity within their borders.

This appears to be a case of fantasy; it’s a couple of op-eds and some politicos replying politely when asked about it. To me, it’s not worth a post based on the notion that it’s going to happen, because it’s not. It’s worth a post as a thought experiment about how people would discuss this option if it did occur — and as a warning about the danger of double standards.

Because if any country actually got up the nerve to do this (none will), it would be hard to mount a principled argument against it — that is, if you have been claiming so far that the favorable treatment his businesses have received from other countries is defensible.

And this is the problem with defending the indefensible. Eventually the argument gets turned around on you. As Popehat pointed out:

Similarly, if you promote the notion that Trump’s businesses are unrelated to his decisionmaking, and try to portray other countries’ using Trump businesses as a matter of no concern, then if it comes time for you to point out that countries are now targeting his businesses, you may find nobody cares.

The larger problem here is when a Democrat with very flawed character seeks the presidency. Remember how bad you said Hillary was? In four years, you’ll be telling me that whoever they picked this time was worse. But if you’ve spent four years defending Trump’s poor character, your complaints about the Democrats’ character are going to be less convincing.

And so it goes with applying a different standard to Trump than you would apply to anyone else. People will remember.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

Sunday Music: Bach Cantata BWV 81

Filed under: Bach Cantatas,General,Music — Patterico @ 12:01 am

It is the fifth Sunday after Pentecost. The title of today’s Bach cantata is “Jesus schläft, was soll ich hoffen?” (Jesus sleeps, what shall I hope for?)

Today’s Gospel reading is Mark 4:35-41.

Jesus Calms the Storm

That day when evening came, he said to his disciples, “Let us go over to the other side.” Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with him. A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?”

He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm.

He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?”

They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!”

The text of today’s piece is available here. The cantata is a perfect musical companion to the Gospel reading, in which the sleeping Jesus awakens to calm the storm and protect those who believe in Him.

Jesus sleeps, what can I hope for?

. . . .

Quiet, heaving sea!
Be silent, storm and wind!
Your bounds are set for you,
so that my chosen child
will never suffer mishap.

O joy to me, my Jesus speaks a word,
my helper is awake,
so must the storm’s waves, the night of misfortune
and all trouble disappear.

Under your protection
I am safe from the storms
of all enemies.
Let Satan rage,
let the enemy fume,
Jesus stands with me.
Whether now it thunders and flashes,
whether sin and Hell terrify,
Jesus will protect me.

Happy listening!

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

6/23/2018

Restaurant Asks Sarah Sanders to Leave on Account of the Trumpiness

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 1:45 pm

Ridiculous:

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said she was told to leave a Virginia restaurant because she works for President Donald Trump.

Sanders wrote on Twitter on Saturday that the owner of Red Hen restaurant in Lexington, Virginia, asked her to leave because of who she works for.

“Her actions say far more about her than about me,” Sanders tweeted. “I always do my best to treat people, including those I disagree with, respectfully and will continue to do so.”

A restaurant should have the right to serve, or not serve, anyone they like. Patrons should have the right to decide that they won’t eat at establishments that refuse service to someone because of their political beliefs.

A man who says he was Sanders’ waiter at the farm-to-table restaurant wrote on Facebook that he only served her for a couple minutes before the owner “asked her to leave and she complied.”

“Her family left on their own accord, we didn’t actually refuse service or ‘kick her out,'” he wrote in the Facebook post.

Of course the restaurant kicked her out. If she’s asked to leave and refuses, she’s trespassing. Don’t pretend management didn’t kick her out. They absolutely did.

Another step towards the politicization of literally everything.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

6/22/2018

Submitted without Comment

Filed under: General — JVW @ 1:49 pm

[guest post by JVW]

From a soccer fan website:

Saudi Arabia fans

You can click over there to contrast this picture with some of the other “Hottest Football Fans” from this year’s World Cup. Feel free to discuss World Cup issues here if you have been following it. The U.S. team hasn’t lost yet!

– JVW

Viral Photo of Girl Separated from Parents Turns Out to Show Girl Who Had Not Been Separated

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 9:15 am

Who cares? It served its propaganda purpose.

The widely shared photo of the little girl crying as a U.S. Border Patrol agent patted down her mother became a symbol of the families pulled apart by the Trump administration’s “zero tolerance” policy at the border, even landing on the new cover of Time magazine.

But the girl’s father told The Washington Post on Thursday night that his child and her mother were not separated, and a U.S. Customs and Border Protection spokesman confirmed that the family was not separated while in the agency’s custody.

The revelation has prompted a round of media criticism from the White House and other conservatives.

“It’s shameful that dems and the media exploited this photo of a little girl to push their agenda,” White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders tweeted Friday. “She was not separated from her mom. The separation here is from the facts.”

The heart-wrenching image, captured by award-winning Getty Images photographer John Moore, was spread across the front pages of international newspapers. It was used to promote a Facebook fundraiser that has collected more than $18 million to help reunite separated families.

And on Thursday, hours before the little girl’s father spoke out, Time magazine released its July 2 cover using the child’s image — without the mother — in a photo illustration that shows her looking up at President Trump, who is seen towering above her.

Screen Shot 2018-06-22 at 9.13.01 AM

. . . .

A Time story recounting the photographer’s experience initially stated the girl was carried away screaming by border agents, and later corrected the article to say that the two were taken away together.

The news that this one fake photo created a fake narrative of a separated child should not be used to distract us from the very real fact that Big Media has created a fake narrative about a “separation policy.”

UPDATE: It’s probably worth noting that the girl was crying, not because of what ICE did to her, but because she was tired and thirsty after the trip her mother had put her through:

“We were patrolling the border. It was after 10 o’clock at night,” Border Patrol agent Carlos Ruiz told CBS News’ David Begnaud. He was the first to encounter Sandra Sanchez and her daughter after they allegedly crossed the Rio Grande River into Texas illegally.

“We asked her to set the kid down in front of her, not away from her, she was right in front of her…So we can properly search the mother,” Ruiz said. “So the kid immediately started crying as she set her down. I personally went up to the mother and asked her ‘Are you doing OK? Is the kid OK?’ and she said, ‘Yes. She’s tired and thirsty. It’s 11 o’clock at night.’”

Her dad back in Honduras was upset at the mom: “I didn’t support it. I asked her, why? Why would she want to put our little girl through that? But it was her decision at the end of the day.” Also, she left three other children back in Honduras, who probably cried when she left although we have no pictures of them doing so.

But Trump!

UPDATE x2: Time Magazine is standing by its fake cover.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

6/21/2018

RIP Charles Krauthammer

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:23 pm

I haven’t watched much TV in general, or Fox News in particular, for quite some time. But the death of Charles Krauthammer still touched me because I used to be an avid fan of Special Report with Brit Hume and enjoyed watching Mr. Krauthammer on “the panel” many a night.

So while there are a lot of tributes out there, there’s nobody I’d rather hear from than Brit Hume. And here he is.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

AP: Trump Trump Unrelated Alleged Abuse of Immigrant Children Trump Trump Trump

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:16 am

The AP reports on allegations of abuse of immigrant children at a federal detention center, making sure to draw a connection between the allegations and President Trump’s crackdown on illegal gang members:

Immigrant children as young as 14 housed at a juvenile detention center in Virginia say they were beaten while handcuffed and locked up for long periods in solitary confinement, left nude and shivering in concrete cells.

The abuse claims against the Shenandoah Valley Juvenile Center near Staunton, Virginia, are detailed in federal court filings that include a half-dozen sworn statements from Latino teens jailed there for months or years. Multiple detainees say the guards stripped them of their clothes and strapped them to chairs with bags placed over their heads.

“Whenever they used to restrain me and put me in the chair, they would handcuff me,” said a Honduran immigrant who was sent to the facility when he was 15 years old. “Strapped me down all the way, from your feet all the way to your chest, you couldn’t really move. … They have total control over you. They also put a bag over your head. It has little holes; you can see through it. But you feel suffocated with the bag on.”

In addition to the children’s first-hand, translated accounts in court filings, a former child-development specialist who worked inside the facility independently told The Associated Press this week that she saw kids there with bruises and broken bones they blamed on guards. She spoke on condition of anonymity because she was not authorized to publicly discuss the children’s cases.

In court filings, lawyers for the detention facility have denied all allegations of physical abuse.

Many of the children were sent there after U.S. immigration authorities accused them of belonging to violent gangs, including MS-13. President Donald Trump has repeatedly cited gang activity as justification for his crackdown on illegal immigration.

Damn that Donald Trump and his mistreatment of immigrant children! This never would have happened under President Ob — say, when did all this stuff allegedly happen? 19 paragraphs down, we are given a hint:

The complaint filed by the nonprofit Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs recounts the story of an unnamed 17-year-old Mexican citizen apprehended at the southern border. The teen fled an abusive father and violence fueled by drug cartels to seek asylum in the United States in 2015.

After stops at facilities in Texas and New York, he was transferred to Shenandoah in April 2016 and diagnosed during an initial screening by a psychologist with three mental disorders, including depression. Besides weekly sessions speaking with a counselor, the lawsuit alleges the teen has received no further mental health treatment, such as medications that might help regulate his moods and behavior.

As a reminder, President Donald J. Trump was inaugurated on January 20, 2017 (to the biggest crowds ever!!!!!1!).

I should add that a reading of the complaint itself does not make it clear when these things allegedly happened — nor, frankly, does the identity of the President much matter, if they did. The allegations typically begin with vague phrases like “on one occasion….” These are only allegations, and the things the lawsuit alleges may have happened and they may not have. If they happened, they likely happened under both Obama and Trump — not just Obama, and not just Trump.

Perhaps more importantly, as the 10th paragraph of the article tells you, this has basically nothing to do with Trump’s family separation policy — oh wait, he doesn’t have a family separation policy, that’s just too much Big Media reading kicking in (wink) — with Trump’s policy of zero tolerance for immigration lawbreakers:

Most children held in the Shenandoah facility who were the focus of the abuse lawsuit were caught crossing the border illegally alone. They were not the children who have been separated from their families under the Trump administration’s recent policy and are now in the government’s care. But the facility there operates under the same program run by the U.S. Office of Refugee Resettlement. It was not immediately clear whether any separated children have been sent to Shenandoah Valley since the Trump administration in April announced its “zero tolerance” policy toward immigrant families, after the lawsuit was filed.

It was also not “immediately clear” why the word Obama appears nowhere in the story.

(H/t to @JammieWF via Allahpundit.)

UPDATE: The AP has since added a line to the story stating: “The incidents described in the lawsuit occurred from 2015 to 2018, during both the Obama and Trump administrations.” This was no doubt added after a conservative outcry over the way the story made it sound like a Trump administration issue. This is not how the story read this morning and I can prove it. Fortunately, the original version was still open in a tab on my computer when I got home today. You can read the text of the entire original version of the story here, where I cut and pasted it into a page. Here is what the relevant passage looked like this morning:

AP Story Original

And here is what it looks like now. Note the added language in the third paragraph, beginning with the words “In court filings”:

AP Story Revised

If you thought conservatives had simply overlooked that language, you were wrong. We hadn’t.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

6/20/2018

Corey Lewandowski on 10-Year-Old with Down Syndrome Being Separated from Her Parent: “Womp Womp”

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:59 am

This is part of the reason why a legitimate policy to crack down on illegal entry is perceived as a deliberate attempt to split up families: because big-time Trumpers like this guy are totally callous about the humanity involved:

Words cannot properly express my contempt for Lewandowski and people like him.

It’s only part of the reason, though. Another part of the reason is the way the media lies about it and makes it seem like that is the point of the policy.

Trump Separation Policy

It’s not a “separation policy.” It’s a policy of prosecuting illegal entry plus an unwillingness to release illegal immigrants into the country while their court cases are pending.

To the extent that people are claiming “asylum” there is a huge problem with people using our asylum laws as a way to be released into the United States even though they lack a valid claim. ICE is simply trying to prevent people from gaming the system.

The Trump administration has a valid basis for this policy. But it would help if we could get a little less gum-flapping and a little more shutting up from callous assholes like Corey Lewandowski.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

6/19/2018

Same Old, Same Old: Socialist Makes an Economically Ignorant Argument

Filed under: General — JVW @ 10:13 pm

[guest post by JVW]

Champagne socialist Katrina vanden Huevel writing in her Washington Post newspaper column today took up the current fashionable leftist dream: forgiveness of student loan debts coupled with “free” (my absolute least-favorite word in political economics) college education at state universities and community colleges. And what’s the rationale for cancelling this debt? Just because, dontcha know:

[Politicians from both parties] have created a system that prices college out of reach and forces children to take on growing levels of debt to pay the fare. That debt too often becomes a millstone on the young people it was intended to assist.

Politicians from both parties have also created a system that prices automobiles and homes out of reach and forces — no, Ms. vanden Huevel, not “children” but young adults — to take on growing level of debt to pay the fare. Does this mean that the next step is to pay off everyone’s auto loans and mortgages? There is little that is as insipid as the leftist creed that government should be paying for any old thing that some plurality of us determine to be generally beneficial. Note where Ms. vanden Heuvel next takes her argument:

Student debt now totals about $1.5 trillion, more than credit card and auto loan debt. About 4 in 10 people who have attended college have taken out loans to help pay for it. These are the children of working- and middle-class families, not the affluent. As the price of college has skyrocketed nearly 400 percent over the past 30 years, the debt burden of those who take out loans has soared as well. The College Board reports that, in 2016, the average debt for those who took out loans to finish a bachelor’s degree was $28,400 — an inflation-adjusted increase of about 30 percent since 2001.

There is no shortage of interesting statistics regarding college loans, rises in tuitions, and overall affordability. The (original) links in Ms. vanden Heuvel’s paragraph quote above are all interested reading, as are others which study how increases in loan subsidies lead to a rise in tuition, or a general comparison of average tuition levels over the past thirty years in constant dollars. Ever the foot soldier for the left (she can probably more aptly be described as a junior officer), Ms. vanden Heuvel makes a somewhat misleading comparison of women holding two-thirds of all student debt without bothering to acknowledge that they also now comprise over 57 percent of bachelor’s degree earners, close to 60 percent of master’s degree earners, and over 52 percent of doctoral degrees; and that women generally receive degrees in fields that are less financially lucrative than the fields in which men receive degrees, meaning that women often take longer to pay back an equivalent amount of student debt.

To her credit, Ms. vanden Heuvel acknowledges the out-of-whack explosion in tuition levels, and rightly places some of the blame on the corresponding growth in higher education bureaucracy:

Part of the cost increase is because state funding didn’t keep up with rising costs, so students and parents are expected to bear more of the expense. A big reason, though, is the obscene growth in administrative salaries and staffing at public colleges and universities, even as more and more of the teaching is done by impoverished adjuncts.

The link in the preceding paragraph is from an opinion piece written by quasi-libertarian fully-contrarian law professor, Paul Campos, so perhaps there are some economic issues where a left-right consensus can be formed. But what Katrina vanden Heuvel fails to acknowledge is that much of that “obscene growth in administrative salaries and staffing” can be traced to the creation of huge left-leaning offices, from general grievance-mongering to trendy environmentalism to preferences for organized labor, none of which I would doubt are particularly unacceptable to her worldview. If she really thinks that colleges need to address administrative bloat, a good place to start might be with the diversity offices that continue to grow even when financial conditions cause faculty members to be laid off, or maybe a Sustainability Office which employs seven full-time staff members with a director who pulls down a cool $156k in salary and benefits.

But the worst part about this op-ed is the author’s contention that the solution to the baleful effects of all this student loan debt is to simply cancel it. Sure, it’s a socialist stand-by: the answer for every problem under the sun is for the government to take it over, make it infinitely worse, yet at the same time protect the most irresponsible of us from the ramifications of our bad decisions. Ms. vanden Huevel would have the federal government “forgive” the loans by buying them up from the various creditors and writing off the federally-backed ones. She envisions this occurring over a ten-year time period, and she points to a study done by economists at Bard College which claims that the effects of this policy will be pretty much uniformly positive, proving that there apparently really is such thing as a free lunch. (Seriously: the study from Bard explicitly refers to the cancellation plan as “a free lunch.”)

Coupled with this debt forgiveness, according to Ms. vanden Heuvel, would be the twin socialist goal of providing free public university education to all students. This is of course one of the many panders popularized recently by Senator Bernard Sanders, and it appeals to young people who love the idea of something for nothing, their parents who would also be let off the financial hook, and the higher education establishment who would no longer have to feel guilty that teenagers are going heavily into hock in order to pay their salaries. The only loser, theoretically, are the taxpayers who would once again be hit up with more costs. People of a certain age (for example — ahem — mine) would have the honor of paying off their own student loans and then paying for the modern social justice warrior to spend five or six years protesting Donald Trump while studying he intricacies of Genderfluid Theory or Latin@/Latinx Street Art.

Or maybe not. One unanticipated consequence of the state taxpayer footing the entire bill is that the legislature would almost surely supplant the existing bureaucracy as the ultimate arbiter of what is offered in the curriculum and who is hired on campus. Imagine the Texas State Legislature gleefully telling the UTEP Women’s and Gender Studies Department to evacuate the premises or letting Texas State know that there is no money forthcoming for the Social Justice Speakers Program. New Jersey politicians might start to question the hiring of nutcase malcontents as faculty members, and maybe deranged moonbats will no longer be foisted upon impressionable young mush-minds. California may continue to try and lard their higher education system with trendy left-wing shibboleths, but even the Democrat-dominated legislature will be at pains to continue to find money to keep the gravy train rolling, especially as we also transition to single-payer health care and chase the bullet train to nowhere.

Our country is awash with horrible ideas these days as the radical left fully takes over the Democrat Party. Pampered and aging gentry radicals like Katrina vanden Heuvel no doubt envision a world where the masses rise up yet somehow don’t challenge her privileged place in society (she went to Princeton, no doubt on family trust funds, and I would hazard a guess that her daughter also attended Princeton on old money from her mother’s side). But ironically enough, their ill-considered plans might end up paving the way for actual higher education reform. There is bound to be lots of bad before any of the good comes along, but clipping the wings of the utter incompetents running public higher education is long overdue.

– JVW

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