Patterico's Pontifications

2/28/2021

Constitutional Vanguard: Dealing with the Scourge of Trump: Go Forth Into the World in Peace

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 12:58 pm



My free newsletter this week is up, and deals with how a follower of Christ might think about dealing with the problem of spineless politicians who want to coddle Donald Trump despite his recent attack on our democracy. I take cues from today’s Gospel lesson and from the blessing our pastor gives us at the end our service each week

Reading today’s Gospel lesson, and reflecting on this blessing, it occurs to me that I spend too much time being angry at people like Mace, Roy, McConnell, and others. In fact, with all their political power, they are simply “the fainthearted” and in a sense “the weak” in the above blessing. The word “privileged” has too many connotations to wokeism to be useful, but these folks are indeed “privileged” in most of the ways that the woke crowd means when they use the word: they are economically comfortable, they have an elevated status in society by virtue of their political offices, and they have a good measure of power over how Americans live our lives. But they are fainthearted, and they are weak in character. And it occurs to me that, rather than being angry at them all the time, it might be helpful to try to strengthen them and help them not to be fainthearted. And to the extent that they are weak in character (and they clearly are), perhaps we ought to support them — not in the sense of “supporting” their weakness, of course . . . quite the opposite: to support them and help them to overcome their weakness. To give comfort to the angels on their shoulder, and help them reject the devil on the other.

It’s over 2,000 words of free ice cream, and you can read it here, or get it delivered straight to your inbox by subscribing here. Paid subscribers get extra stuff, but even if you’re not going paid, check out the post and let me know what you think.

Sunday Music: Bach Cantata BWV 56

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 11:01 am



It is the second Sunday in Lent. The title of today’s cantata is “Ich will den Kreuzstab gerne tragen” (I will gladly carry the Cross):

When I first published this version of this piece three years ago, I said:

The performance features Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, a nice choice for a cantata composed entirely for the bass (at least until the final chorale). Fischer-Dieskau’s intelligence and uniquely recognizable voice make this a very special performance. . . . It’s hard for me to listen to this man sing without chills running down my spine. What greater evidence could there be of God’s existence than a piece like this, and a voice like his to sing it?” I continue to feel the same way.

Today’s Gospel reading is Mark 8:31-38:

Jesus Predicts His Death

He then began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and after three days rise again. He spoke plainly about this, and Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him.

But when Jesus turned and looked at his disciples, he rebuked Peter. “Get behind me, Satan!” he said. “You do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns.”

The Way of the Cross

Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me and for the gospel will save it. What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul? If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of them when he comes in his Father’s glory with the holy angels.”

As I said in 2018:

These are words that stick with you long after the reading is done, and the very title of the cantata shows it to be a perfect pairing with the reading. For a reading in which Jesus says: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must … take up their cross and follow me,” no music could accompany the message better than a cantata titled “I will gladly carry the Cross.”

The words stick with me enough that I believe they will make an appearance in today’s edition of my newsletter.

The text of today’s cantata is available here, and the opening aria contains these words:

I will gladly carry the Cross,
it comes from God’s dear hand,
and leads me, after my troubles,
to God, in the promised land.
There at last I will lay my sorrow in the grave,
there my Savior himself will wipe away my tears.

Happy listening! Soli Deo gloria.

2/26/2021

Weekend Open Thread

Filed under: General — Dana @ 8:15 pm



[guest post by Dana]

Here are a few news items for you to discuss. Feel free to share anything that you think would interest readers. Please make sure to include links.

First news item

Oof:

A State Department official for several years has been publicly calling for the establishment of Christian nation-states, warning that white people face “elimination” and railing against Jews as well as Black Lives Matter and other social movements.

Fritz Berggren, a mid-ranking Foreign Service officer, openly uses his name and image as he espouses these and other controversial views, according to a review of his online postings. Current and former State Department officials noted the connection to POLITICO in recent days.

“Jesus Christ came to save the whole world from the Jews — the founders of the original Anti-Christ religion, they who are the seed of the Serpent, that brood of vipers,” states an Oct. 4 blog post signed “Fritz Berggren, PhD” and titled “Jews are Not God’s Chosen People. Judeo-Christian is Anti-Christ.”

“They murdered Jesus Christ,” the 5,300-word post continues, “How then can they be God’s chosen?”

In a Oct. 24 post titled “The Demon-God of Diversity,” he states: “The world gasps in horror with each new ‘endangered’ sub-species, but cheers the elimination of White culture from whole regions of the earth. This will not stop until White people stop it — we have been handmaidens to our own demise.”

Second news item

Clearly, definitions of “essential spending” and “coronavirus relief” are up for grabs:

[T]he U.S. House posted a first draft version of the “American Rescue Plan Act of 2021” – a $1.9 trillion emergency aid package to help America recover from the coronavirus pandemic.

Previous legislation has already provided at least $4 trillion in funds for testing, paid family leave, small business relief, direct payments to individuals and families, the Kennedy Center, and a plethora of non-related Covid-19 “relief.”

*$1.5 million earmarked for the Seaway International Bridge, which connects New York to Canada. Senate Leader Chuck Schumer hails from New York.

*$50 million for “family planning” – going to non-profits, i.e. Planned Parenthood, or public entities, including for “services for adolescents[.]”

*$852 million for AmeriCorps, AmeriCorps Vista, and the National Senior Service Corps – the Corporation for National and Community Service – civic volunteer agencies. This includes $9 million for the AmeriCorp inspector general to conduct oversight and audits of the largess. AmeriCorps received a $1.1 billion FY2020 appropriation.

Third news item

California legislators working hard to increase Amazon sales:

Retail stores in most of California are only allowed to operate at 25 percent capacity. A new bill in the state legislature would ensure that whatever part of their shop is allowed to be open is as inclusive as possible.

Last week, Assembly Members Evan Low (D–Cupertino) and Cristina Garcia (D–Los Angeles) introduced a bill that would require retailers to offer their toys and childcare products in a gender-neutral format.

Brick-and-mortar shops would have to display the majority of their products and clothing aimed at children in one undivided, unisex area on the sales floor. They’d also be barred from putting up signage that would indicate whether a product was intended for a boy or girl.

If passed, stores that did put dresses in a separate girls section could be hit with a $1,000 civil fine. The policy would only apply to retail department stores with over 500 employees.

CAUTION: RANT AHEAD…So now parents will have to take extra time to pick through the gender-neutral clothing to try and find clothes specifically intended for boys or girls? No, that wouldn’t be frustrating at all, especially if you are shopping with irritable offspring who clearly want to be doing anything but shopping. And using the heavy-hand of the government to enforce this policy is just so typical. We are in the midst of a devastating pandemic where people’s lives have been turned upside down as they face Covid-19, school closures, online learning, unemployment, lost businesses, struggles to pay rent and to put food on the table, and all these nimwits can think of to do in a time of crisis is…this? To review: introduce a dumb piece of legislation (stores are already moving in this direction, no need to mandate it) during a pandemic, have the government penalize stores (currently functioning at a limited capacity because of said pandemic) if they don’t submit. Brilliant move, California. Sure, increase bureaucracy by having to enforce the new policy (aka new revenue stream). And when you end up scratching your heads as businesses start leaving the state because the grass is indeed greener elsewhere, you’re going to hear a nasty I told you so from me. And that’s when the real insanity kicks-in: Taxes will be raised on Californians to make up for the lost revenue. Lather-rinse-repeat.

Fourth news item

President Biden orders airstrikes in Syria:

President Joe Biden on Thursday ordered airstrikes on buildings in Syria that the Pentagon said were used by Iranian-backed militias, in retaliation for rocket attacks on U.S. targets in neighboring Iraq.

The strikes killed at least 22 people, London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Friday, citing unconfirmed local reports.

Pentagon press secretary John Kirby portrayed the bombing in eastern Syria as carefully calibrated, calling it “proportionate” and “defensive.”

Democrats had concerns about the President’s decision:

“Some Democrats said that Congress has not passed an authorization for the use of military force specifically in Syria,” reports CNN.

Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.) said “there is absolutely no justification for a president to authorize a military strike that is not in self-defense against an imminent threat without congressional authorization … we need to extricate from the Middle East, not escalate.”

Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) agreed, calling for an immediate congressional briefing and saying “offensive military action without congressional approval is not constitutional absent extraordinary circumstances.”

Jen-jump-to-defend-Psaki jumped in and did that thing she does:

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki defended the action as “necessary,” and said Biden “has the right to take action” as he sees fit. She said “there was a thorough, legal response” and the Defense Department briefed congressional leadership in advance.

Fifth news item

Today’s Republican Party confirmed at T-PAC:

With the first full day of the Conservative Political Action Conference underway, there’s already an indisputable star: an outrageously golden statue of Donald Trump wearing shorts and flip-flops.

The more than 6-foot-tall statue turned heads as it was wheeled into the Hyatt Regency Thursday evening while CPAC attendees picked up their registration and milled about the hotel. The statue was on its way to the conference’s exhibit hall, where it found a home in a booth for a conservative nonprofit called Look Ahead America.

Tommy Zegan, a California-based artist, created the Trump statue in response to the multiple pieces of art mocking Trump.

“Two years ago, when I saw all those statues of naked Trump and Trump on a toilet, I said, ‘You know what? I can do better,’ ” Zegan told CNN Friday as attendees gathered around the statue to snap photos with it.

Here is Zegan’s statue of Trump. It reminds me of a cross between the iconic Bob’s Big Boy statute and Exodus 32:

trump

Sixth news item

The White House blinks:

The Biden administration will not sanction Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman over Jamal Khashoggi’s murder in 2018 even though a declassified US intelligence assessment explicitly implicated him.

The Treasury Department on Friday unveiled sanctions against Gen. Ahmed al-Asiri, a former deputy head of the Saudi intelligence services, and the Saudi Rapid Intervention Force.

“Those involved in the abhorrent killing of Jamal Khashoggi must be held accountable. With this action, Treasury is sanctioning Saudi Arabia’s Rapid Intervention Force and a senior Saudi official who was directly involved in Jamal Khashoggi’s murder,” Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said in a statement. “The United States stands united with journalists and political dissidents in opposing threats of violence and intimidation. We will continue to defend the freedom of expression, which is the bedrock of a free society.”

A senior administration official told Reuters that the Biden administration was concerned that sanctioning the crown prince could “rupture” the US-Saudi relationship.

Seventh news item

Kids caught in the middle:

The number of unaccompanied immigrant children arrested for crossing the U.S. southern border illegally is on pace to rise more than 50% in February compared with the previous month, people familiar with the matter said, raising the prospect of a humanitarian crisis there.

About 2,200 children have been illegally crossing the border weekly in February, and the pace is picking up as the month progresses, some of the people said. The government is projecting that about 9,000 children will be taken into custody by the end of February.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection reported taking 5,707 unaccompanied children into custody in January, an 18% rise from the previous month. The growing number of children in custody is beginning to strain the government’s ability to properly house and care for them.

Eighth news item

Social media posts continue to bite users :

A former Walled Lake High School teacher has filed a federal lawsuit over his firing last year over his political posts on social media.

Justin Kucera, who also coached sports at the school, got into hot water last July when he tweeted his support for then-President Donald Trump, and also that “Liberals suck man.”

Kucera was offered his job back if he would apologize and promise to do better, but Kurcera claims the discipline is a violation of his first amendment rights.

Kucera is seeking damages for lost income and emotional distress.

Deleting a thousand old tweets doesn’t undo the damage:

[Neera Tanden’s] nomination as President Biden’s budget chief appears to be hanging by a thread, mostly because of GOP senators angered by her sharp tone on Twitter as head of the Center for American Progress.

The White House is sticking with Tanden so far, but it does not appear she has 50 votes of support in the Senate.

And while it is mostly Republicans complaining about her tweets, they’ve been joined by Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin (W.Va.), who says he’ll oppose her nomination because of her Twitter voice. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) has also felt her barbs on Twitter and has been notable in not offering his public backing.

Related (and confirming how really awful people can be):

…a Washington Post reporter showed Murkowski a tweet Tanden had written about the Alaska senator in 2017 when she accused her of being “high on your own supply.”

“You know, we know, and everyone knows this is all garbage,” Tanden wrote in the tweet. “Just stop.”

After reading the tweet on the reporter’s phone, Murkowski replied: “High on my own supply, that’s interesting. Should I ask her? My own supply of what? See that goes to show how much homework I still have to do on her if I didn’t even know that she had sent out a tweet about me.”

In another sign of the nation’s noxious political atmosphere, particularly on social media and in emails sent to the media, the Washington Post reporter who showed Murkowski the tweet was hit with racist, sexist and hateful attacks after a photo of the exchange circulated on social media.

P.S. Don’t miss this great interview with Reason’s Nick Gillespie and Rep. Peter Meijer. In his almost two months serving as a representative, Meijer has faced some enormous challenges:

Just three days after being sworn into Congress to represent Michigan’s 3rd district, Republican freshman Peter Meijer found himself and colleagues trapped without security in the bowels of the Capitol building while a riot that ultimately claimed five lives raged all around him.

The following week, he was one of just 10 Republicans—and the only first-termer—to vote to impeach Donald Trump, a decision that led to a narrowly failed censure vote from his own state’s GOP and immediate announcements that he will be primaried in 2022.

It’s apparent from the get-go that Meijer is smart, insightful, and best of all, thinks before he speaks:

Meijer tells Nick Gillespie why he believes in limited government, economic freedom, and individualism; why he’s against out-of-control stimulus spending and military adventurism; and how he plans to combat the craziness he sees both on the right and left in the House of Representatives. He also talks about what he’s learned about business and public service from being the scion of the Meijer superstore chain, how generational fault lines may be every bit as important as partisan ones, and why he’s committed to voting his principles rather than his constituents’ will.

If the GOP had more Meijers, they might actually woo voters back to the Party.

Have a great weekend!

–Dana

[ADDENDUM by JVW]

Since DCSCA is chiding us for not discussing the Mars 2020 mission and the Perseverance Rover’s successful landing on the red planet, I include here one of the first images captured by the rover.

Mars

“Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump Trump”

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:29 am



So says the GOP.

I love me some dynasties, but I especially love me dynasties composed exclusively of stupid venal clowns.

Mitch McConnell, who two weeks ago said that Trump was “practically and morally responsible for provoking the events of the day” of January 6 — remember that day? That’s the day a violent mob attacked police and tried to disrupt the vote counting to help Trump steal the election. Yeah, that day — was asked whether he would support the man responsible for all of that as president. Sure! Of course! Why, he’d be the nominee!! How could you not support him?

You already witnessed, as described in Dana’s post from yesterday, a similar cognitive dissonance from Chip Roy of Texas, who said Liz Cheney had forfeited her right to be in leadership for saying there ought to be no role in the party for someone whom Roy himself said a couple of weeks ago had committed impeachable offenses.

It’s Trumps all the way down.

2/25/2021

About That “Perceived Rift” In The Republican Party…

Filed under: General — Dana @ 2:18 pm



[guest post by Dana]

Despite Sen. Rick Scott’s efforts to unite the GOP by brushing away any perceived rift in the Republican Party, the fact remains that there is a very real rift within the Party. Let’s look at three recent indicators that confirm that the Party is beset by internal feuding. These also serve to pinpoint the biggest part of the problem. And his name starts with a T.

First up is Sen. Marjorie Taylor Greene, who keeps it pithy and blunt:

If the Republican Party wants to regain its standing as a viable, unified party that continues to value longheld principles and values, fealty to a past-president embroiled in lawsuits and payback after trying to upturn a legitimate election and foster an attempted insurrection isn’t helping to reach achieve that end. In fact, Greene seems hellbent on provoking fellow-members as much as she can with her continued fealty to Trump, as well as her public support of an individual known for spreading baseless conspiracy theories and calling herself a “proud Islamaphobe”:

Meanwhile, Rep. Fred Upton, who was previously censured for voting to impeach Trump after the Jan. 6 melee, put a fine point on just how wide the divide is as he relates how he was treated by his local House district GOP after voting to remove Greene from the education committee:

Whaaat??? If the Cass County GOP doesn’t consider Greene’s comments “out of line with anyone else’s comments” and are right about that, then that tells you pretty much all you need to know about the group.

And then there’s that ballsy pesk, Rep. Liz I-have-a-backbone-and-am-not-afraid-to-use-it Cheney, who is now being pressured by the House Freedom Caucus to step down from her leadership position because once again, she revealed said backbone:

I know. Pretty horrible, right?? How dare she!

The fallout:

The chair of the conservative House Freedom Caucus is urging Rep. Liz Cheney to step down from her position as the number three House Republican in leadership over her latest critical comments of former President Donald Trump.

“She should step down,” Rep. Andy Biggs of Arizona told reporters on Thursday.

And Rep. Chip Roy of Texas, another House Freedom Caucus member, said Cheney has “forfeited her right to be chair of the Republican Caucus.”

Biggs, a major Trump supporter, said Cheney’s Wednesday comments were “outrageous” but “consistent with at least four other statements she’s made in the last few weeks.” And he emphasized that he doesn’t believe “she is able to carry out” her House GOP leadership responsibilities “any further.”

“I also think she is absolutely devoid of any kind of political reading of what’s going on in the party,” he added. “If she any sense of shame, she would step down.”

Roy called Cheney’s latest comments “completely out of step with the Republican conference.”

Did Rep. Chip Roy forgot that he supported Cheney after her impeachment vote last month:

Rep. Chip Roy (R-Texas) also rejected calls for Cheney to step down even though they differed on impeachment. “Liz should be commended, not condemned, for standing up in defense of the Constitution and standing true to her beliefs,” he said.

So, what’s changed for him?

While it’s still unclear how things will shake out in the Party, it’s clear that the rift is more than just perceived. It’s very much alive. Clearly, the Cheneys and Uptons of the Party are parked beside Mitt Romney in that “tiny wing of the Republican party” that he identified yesterday.

–Dana

Goodbye, Mr. Potato Head

Filed under: General — Dana @ 11:06 am



[guest post by Dana]

Mrs. Potato Head was shocked to learn today that Mr. Potato Head is no longer a mister:

Hasbro, the company that makes the potato-shaped plastic toy, is giving the spud a gender neutral new name: Potato Head. The change will appear on boxes this year.

Toy makers have been updating their classic brands to appeal to kids today. Barbie has shed its blonde image and now comes in multiple skin tones and body shapes. Thomas the Tank Engine added more girl characters. And American Girl is now selling a boy doll.

Hasbro said Mr. Potato Head, which has been around for about 70 years, needed a modern makeover.

Do you know who doesn’t give a whit about Mr. Potato Head “needing a modern makeover”? Every kid who has happily played with a Mr. Potato Head in the past 70 years. Hasbro can do what they want with their product, and if this decision generates more sales, then it will prove to have been a smart marketing decision.

I just hate to see any long-standing relationship come to an end. Certainly it’s got to be hard on Mrs. Potato Head to learn that her husband is no longer quite the spud he used to be:

potato head

–Dana

2/24/2021

Tonight’s Missive to Paid Subscribers

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 5:25 pm



Tonight’s missive to paid subscribers is . . .

. . . well, it’s . . .

. . . it’s about 3,800 words long.

That’s all I can tell you. If I told you more, I would have to kill you.

The missive is titled: Mike Pesca Suspended at Slate for . . . Doing a Bad Thing I Can’t Talk About. The old lady who swallowed the fly makes an appearance. The only teaser I can give you is this:

The haughty way in which woke white people lecture on this issue is perfectly encapsulated in this hilarious exchange between my man Thomas Chatterton Williams and Kirsten Powers. This is worth reading all the way through.

If you want in on the fun, subscribe.

UPDATE: I did another podcast too!

Is the Problem with the Republican Party Just Trump?

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:29 am



Yesterday I had a brief Twitter interchange with my friend Dan McLaughlin of National Review. Dan had been talking to Tim Miller and had asserted that the Democrats have nothing to offer the 2012 Republican voter. Someone else begged to differ:

I replied:

When Dan replied to that by saying that Trump’s behavior should not change what you think of the Democrats, I clarified that I was engaging in a comparative and not an absolute analysis. Dan responded to that by claiming that the Democrats are “institutionally bad” while the Republicans have a problem with one person:

Is that true?

Dan got some blowback for that tweet and I think it’s deserved. Several of us reminded him that a majority of the Republican House caucus voted to help Trump steal an election after a violent mob at the Capitol disrupted the counting of electoral votes. Now, we have the wave of censures at a more local level for anyone who steps out of line:

You can’t even take action against a clearly poisonous conspiracy theorist and remain in the party’s good graces.

I try to keep in mind these days that there are good folks like Beldar (and Paul Montagu) in the Republican party. Clearly the problem with the party is not true of everyone in it. But there seems to be a majority that prefers cranks and liars to sensible people. And that’s a problem.

Maybe there are not many people like me, but speaking for myself: if the GOP wants my vote, it has to wake up and figure out how it alienated me and people like me. Demonizing the left ain’t gonna cut it for me anymore. There’s plenty bad about the Democrats — but when a party that bad starts to look like the saner option, the responsibility doesn’t really lie with me to fix it. The party needs to fix itself.

2/23/2021

Tiger Woods in Single-Car Wreck in Rancho Palos Verdes

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:42 pm



I didn’t do it. I promise.

Rancho Palos Verdes is actually a fairly sprawling town, and the presence of hills and gated communities means that even places separated by about six miles as the crow flies can take 20+ minutes of driving to get to. Such is the distance from my house to the location of Tiger’s accident, and I was finishing dressing after a shower and getting ready to walk the dogs when it happened. Not guilty.

In all seriousness, though, as of this writing this could be a career-ender for Tiger, which is a real shame. As Brotherico noted to me, there will be inevitable comparisons to Ben Hogan’s awful car wreck, and Mac Engel at the Startlegram obliges with this story: Ben Hogan came back from a terrible car crash and hopefully Tiger Woods can, too:

On Feb. 2, 1949, Ben and his wife, Valerie, were driving near Van Horn, Texas, on their way back to Fort Worth in foggy conditions when their car was hit head-on by a Greyhound bus.

Hogan reportedly stretched out across the seat to save Valerie. The left side of Hogan’s body was crushed. He sustained injuries to his pelvis, ankle, knee, ribs, collarbone and shoulder.

Hogan did not receive medical attention for 90 minutes, and then it took another two and a half hours before he was taken to a hospital in El Paso.

Some of his internal organs also sustained injuries, and his left eye would grow worse as a result of this crash.

The initial reports said Ben Hogan was dead. When the full details of the injury became known, the prevailing thought was that he would be lucky to walk again, and his career as a professional golfer was over.

He was 36.

Sixteen months after the crash, Ben Hogan won the 1950 U.S. Open at Merion near Philadelphia. He would have to play five rounds in four days, and it became known as the “Miracle at Merion.”

There was no fog in RPV this morning, though . . . and Tiger Woods is 45, not 36.

Also, fog is an understandable cause of a car crash. Tiger’s crash is much harder to understand. Reportedly, his car went over a center median, hitting a “Welcome to Rolling Hills Estates” sign on the way (but see below: I think this is wrong), crossed onto the other side of the road, and then went off the road, flipping an undetermined number of times before ending up in an awful-looking wreck. It’s a miracle he survived.

Here is a Google Street view of the area where Tiger’s crash began. I found it based on searching Google Maps and comparing it to footage of the crash. I won’t go into all the details I used to prove this is correct, but the Washington Post says that “[a]n extended stretch of Hawthorne Boulevard, running from Blackhorse Road to Palos Verdes Drive, remained blocked off Tuesday afternoon” and this is in that area. Find any aerial footage you like and compare it to the street view below

Tiger Woods Crash Area

About a minute earlier, Tiger would have passed Palos Verdes Peninsula High School, where my daughter graduated nearly three years ago, on his left.

Initial reports were that Tiger was going northbound, which is the view you have in the picture above. They are apparently saying he hit the sign in the center divider here — which is interesting, because it’s actually a “Welcome to Rancho Palos Verdes” sign — at least on Google Maps. You’re looking at the back of that sign in the above photo. Click on the street view link and cruise it yourself if you don’t believe me. He then crossed the center divider, crossed briefly into the lane of oncoming traffic, and then left the road on the left, I believe a good 50 feet off the road to the left of a telephone pole — I think one further down the road from you see beyond the back of the welcome sign.

At the press conference, they said this is a frequent site for car accidents. It’s downhill, and the terrain invites cars to go much faster than the posted 45 mph speed limit. On the right side of the photo above you can the “runaway vehicle escape lane ahead” sign. The deputies said they often clock people doing 80. There were no skid marks and I get the impression Tiger was flying down that road. He was wearing a seatbelt, which probably saved his life. No indication of whether drugs, alcohol, pain meds for his back, sleepiness, distracted driving, or some other cause explains the accident.

I’m not optimistic for him, but I wish him the best.

NRSC Chairman: The Republican Civil War Is Now Canceled

Filed under: General — Dana @ 6:07 pm



[guest post by Dana]

A quick post about how the National Republican Senatorial Committee chairman has started the enormous job flipping the Senate back to the GOP in 2022 with an announcement that the GOP civil war is canceled:

Democrats, and their friends in the media, have spent every day since the 2020 election hyping up a perceived rift in the Republican Party.

Today, NRSC Chairman, Senator Rick Scott, released a memo that will be sent to elected officials, activists, donors and voters across the country outlining his focus on the future and how we win back the Senate majority…

The long running impeachment show is now over. This political theater should have been held at the other end of Washington in the Kennedy Center instead of the US Capitol. It was an unserious circus. It’s over. Now it’s time to look ahead.

First, let’s evaluate our situation: The Democrats control the White House, the Senate, and the House of Representatives. In other words, they control Washington.

Here is what they have done and are in the process of doing so far: cutting border security, granting amnesty to illegals, cancelling the Keystone pipeline destroying thousands of jobs, allowing males to compete in women’s sports, banning fracking on federal lands making us less energy independent and using tax dollars to pay for abortion in foreign countries. And they have built an amazing military-style wall around the US Capitol, at the same time they are stopping construction on the wall at our southern border.

Oh, and they also want to cancel us, not simply from social media, but they also want to get you fired from your job, get your bank to drop you, make you unemployable in the future, re-educate you, and completely silence anyone who disagrees with their new woke version of socialism in America.

And yet, at the very same time these far-left radicals are trying to remake America in their image, and lead us into a disastrous, dystopian, socialist future, we have a parade of pundits and even Republican voices suggesting we should have a GOP civil war.

NO.

This does not need to be true, should not be true, and will not be true. Those fanning these flames, in both the media and our own ranks, desire a GOP civil war.

No, we don’t have time for that: The hour is late, the Democrats are planning to destroy our freedoms, and the threat in front of us is very real.

After previously declaring the impeachment trial “unconstitutional,” Scott said that the second impeachment of Donald Trump was “a complete waste of time,” and voted to acquit the former president. In December, Scott doubled-down on his support for Trump in 2024. Scott also offered cover to Liz Cheney after her vote to impeach Trump, saying that “people ought to respect how people vote. You might disagree with how they vote, but you ought to respect how they vote”.

Another reason why Scott is aiming to unify Republicans and get them to turn their fire on the Democrats has to do with none other than Donald Trump:

Rabble-rousing rank-and-file House members like Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., are aiming to elbow out any Republicans who don’t fully support the former president, including House GOP Conference Chair Liz Cheney, R-Wyo.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., recently embarked on a media tour trashing the former president for his behavior after the presidential election.

“There is no question former President Trump bears moral responsibility,” for the Jan. 6 assault on the Capitol, he wrote in the Wall Street Journal. “His supporters stormed the Capitol because of the unhinged falsehoods he shouted into the world’s largest megaphone.”

Trump then unleashed on McConnell in a strikingly personal and scorched-earth press release.

“Mitch is a dour, sullen, and unsmiling political hack, and if Republican Senators are going to stay with him, they will not win again.” Trump said. “Where necessary and appropriate, I will back primary rivals who espouse Making America Great Again and our policy of America First.”

If Trump follows through on that threat, it could put Scott and the NRSC in the awkward position of having to decide whether to support an incumbent Republican and spend money essentially opposing the former president in a primary, or to let the incumbent face the primary challenge on his or her own. Scott has reiterated in recent days that that NRSC will support incumbents.

Stay tuned.

–Dana

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