The Jury Talks Back


Trump, Pelosi, Schumer And Their Public Spat Over Border Security

Filed under: Uncategorized — Dana @ 4:58 pm

[guest post by Dana]

President Trump met with Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer today to discuss border security and a possible government shutdown if the President doesn’t get the wall funding he wants. And what Trump wants is $5 billion, and what the Democrats are offering 1.3 billion. Also in attendance was Vice President Mike Pence, who looked like he was deep in prayer, petitioning God to keep the long knives from coming out. As you can see from the video below – and you must watch the whole rancorous mess – Pelosi and Schumer worked hard to remain polite in spite of their obvious disdain for Trump. He is the tone-deaf Goofus to their self-righteous Gallant. Things became increasingly heated as Pelosi and Schumer lost sight of Trump’s ability to dig in when challenged about something he believes is right. And he doesn’t care who is watching. In fact, the more people watching, the better. And although Pelosi suggested that they take the discussion behind closed doors, it continued until Trump decided it was enough. The frustrated look on Pelosi’s face at the end is really priceless:

The Washington Post reported on the skirmish:

President Trump, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer clashed Tuesday over funding for the border wall, an explosive Oval Office encounter that ended with Trump declaring he’d be proud to shut down the government to get what he wants.

The stunning public spat, during which Schumer accused the president of throwing a “temper tantrum,” ended with no resolution and appeared to increase the chances of a partial government shutdown at the end of next week, just before Christmas.

The three leaders pointed fingers, raised their voices and interrupted each other repeatedly as they fought over policy and politics, laying bare their differences for all to see.

Schumer lectured Trump that “Elections have consequences, Mr. President.”

Trump claimed that, because she is working to nail down the votes to become speaker, “Nancy’s in a situation where it’s not easy for her to talk right now.”

Pelosi retorted: “Please don’t characterize the strength that I bring to this meeting as the leader of the House Democrats who just won a big victory.”

Amusingly, after the parties went to their separate corners, Pelosi demonstrated her political skills as she cleverly targeted Trump’s Achilles heel: his masculinity:

“It’s like a manhood thing for him. As if manhood could ever be associated with him. This wall thing,” said the California congresswoman.

Pelosi (D-Calif.) made the remarks in a Democratic caucus committee meeting, which were recounted by an aide present who was not authorized to comment publicly.

Allapundit lays out a likely strategy b Pelosi:

I think, it’s to bait Trump into digging in on the shutdown, which Dems think will be a winner for them politically. (Notice in the excerpt what Pelosi considers her “accomplishment” today to have been.) They’re probably right about that, too — not because the polling favors them, necessarily, but because congressional Republicans won’t want a protracted shutdown which they know going in will be blamed on the president. This is “Trump vs. Democrats” right now but soon enough it’ll be a “Trump vs. RINOs” thing. Insulting him personally is Pelosi’s way of making it harder for him to cave, at least early on, thus ensuring that intra-GOP squabble later.

Pelosi also told colleagues that she was ““trying to be the mom” in the room while Trump and Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) bickered about the coming funding showdown.” Ugh. Stop it, Nancy. These men don’t need a mommy to corral them. Neither party is the civilized group of noblemen they pretend to be when in public. We know better. Personally, I’m all for seeing the warts fully exposed. Debate these vexing issues in a public setting more often, and let the Americans for whom they work, see how elected officials really conduct themselves, and let us hear specifically what claims they make, and the veracity of them. Exactly whose best interest is at heart?

Pelosi considered it a political victory that the president said he said he would be “…proud to shut down the government for border security . . . I will be the one to shut it down, I’m not going to blame you for it,” telling committee members:

“The fact is, we did get him to say, to fully own, that the shutdown was his,” she said, according to the aide. “That was an accomplishment.”

First, is it really a victory when you consider that Trump has no problem saying HUGE things when necessary and double-dog daring anyone as well. Anytime, anywhere. He is always willing to up the ante. But more importantly, to his base (and Americans) who want to see the border more secure, an effective wall in place, and the government doing its job to stem the flow of illegal immigration into our country, I suspect there was more cheering going on than Pelosi realized.


TIME Person of the Year: The Fake News Media

Filed under: Uncategorized — Patterico @ 8:18 am

That’s not how they phrase it, of course, but it’s how You Know Who will phrase it:

The choice is getting roundly derided for being breast-beating “look at me!” journalism. That’s both fair and unfair, depending on which parts of the article you read.

There are inspiring stories in there, having nothing really to do with Trump, about brave journalists who have suffered outrageous governmental retribution for their truthful reporting. Most followers of the news know the Khashoggi story, but do you know these stories?

And in prison in Myanmar, two young Reuters reporters remain separated from their wives and children, serving a sentence for defying the ethnic divisions that rend that country. For documenting the deaths of 10 minority Rohingya Muslims, Kyaw Soe Oo and Wa Lone got seven years. The killers they exposed were sentenced to 10.

This year brought no shortage of other examples. Bangladeshi photographer Shahidul Alam was jailed for more than 100 days for making “false” and “provocative” statements after criticizing Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in an interview about mass protests in Dhaka. In Sudan, freelance journalist Amal Habani was arrested while covering economic protests, detained for 34 days and beaten with electric rods. In Brazil, reporter Patricia Campos Mello was targeted with threats after reporting that supporters of President-elect Jair Bolsonaro had funded a campaign to spread false news stories on WhatsApp. And Victor Mallet, Asia news editor for the Financial Times, was forced out of Hong Kong after inviting an activist to speak at a press club event against the wishes of the Chinese government. Worldwide, a record number of journalists—262 in total—were imprisoned in 2017, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists, which expects the total to be high again this year.

How well do you know this one?

“I can tell you this,” declared Chase Cook, a reporter for the Capital Gazette. “We are putting out a damn paper tomorrow.”

Cook’s promise, shared with the world on Twitter, came just a few hours after five of his colleagues were killed. The man charged with their murders had been obsessed with the paper since it wrote about his harassment of a high school classmate—part of its routine coverage of local legal proceedings. He made the office a crime scene. To put the damn paper out, staffers set up laptops in the bed of a pickup in a parking garage across the street.

When the next edition arrived—on schedule—the opinion page was blank but for the names of the dead. Gerald Fischman. Rob Hiaasen. John McNamara. Rebecca Smith. Wendi Winters. Beneath their names was a coda that might have been written with a goose quill: “Tomorrow this page will return to its steady purpose of offering our readers informed opinion about the world around them, that they might be better citizens.”

These stories merit further publicity. But, of course, TIME can’t be satisfied with that. As anyone would predict, they also have to administer the mandatory dose of Trump-centric lecturing.

A month after taking office, President Trump sat for an interview with Breitbart, the right-wing online news site that had been run by his then chief strategist, Steve Bannon. “The fake media is the opposition party,” the President declared. “The fake media is the enemy of the American people.”

The “enemy” line had been floated 10 days earlier, in a tweet that named the offending news organizations: “The FAKE NEWS media (failing @nytimes, @NBCNews @ABC, @CBS, @CNN) is not my enemy, it is the enemy of the American People!”

The President may not have known the history of the phrase. It was used in the Soviet Union, to condemn subordinates at the 1930s show trials Joseph Stalin ordered before executing those who had fallen out of favor. “The people” were peasants who had starved after Stalin confiscated grain harvests. The officials were the dictator’s scapegoats.

It’s not that they don’t have a point. It’s that the point is out of place in an article designed to showcase brave truthtellers. The president’s attitude towards the news media is ridiculous. Sometimes they deserve the derision, but often they don’t. But the difference here is that nobody in Donald Trump’s America is getting imprisoned or killed by Donald Trump for Bravely Standing Up to Him. In short, Jim Acosta (briefly lost his press pass) is not Kyaw Soe Oo, or Wa Lone (imprisoned for telling the truth about genocide) or even Jamal Khashoggi (murdered for criticizing the Saudi regime). So why is Acosta mentioned in the same article?

For once, couldn’t they just let the brave and lesser-known reporters be the true focus of attention?

And of course the answer is no.

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