Patterico's Pontifications

8/31/2023

Today’s Porn Isn’t The Porn of Your Youth; It’s Far Worse and Children Are Accessing It

Filed under: General — Dana @ 6:23 pm



[guest post by Dana]

A 16-year old girl discusses having been exposed to pornography at a very early age:

I was ten years old when I watched porn for the first time. I found myself on Pornhub, which I stumbled across by accident and returned to out of curiosity. The website has no age verification, no ID requirement, not even a prompt asking me if I was over 18. The site is easy to find, impossible to avoid, and has become a frequent rite of passage for kids my age.

Where was my mother? In the next room, making sure I was eating nine differently colored fruits and vegetables on the daily. She was attentive, nearly a helicopter parent, but I found online porn anyway. So did my friends.

Today I’m 16, and my peers are suffering from an addiction to what many call “the new drug.” Porn is the disastrous replacement for intimacy among my sexless, anxiety-ridden generation.

Anyone who has made a serious effort to be a “good” parent has likely had to deal with their kids and porn; blocks are installed on home computers, keystroke loggers are used, kids’ histories are checked, and maybe they have their phones confiscated every night before bed. There are any number of safety precautions available today, but it still seems that parents are always running a step behind. The internet provides a seemingly limitless number of pornographic websites that clever and determined kids can eventually access, or they might be like the writer of this piece and accidentally stumble upon them. Whether catching one’s offspring in the act of looking at porn, discovering their internet wanderings via their browsing history, or clicking on an open tab they forgot to close, most kids (I really wish I could just specify teenagers here because that’s more palatable than “kids,” which would include children…) will have viewed some pornography while still living at home with their parents.

And lest you think that today’s porn is the porn of your youth, think again. The young writer takes the time to explain, in painful detail, just how horrifying the porn is that kids are viewing today:

When I talk to adults, I get the strong sense they picture a hot bombshell in lingerie or a half-naked model on a beach. This is not what I stumbled upon back in fourth grade. I saw simulated incest, bestiality, extreme bondage, sex with unconscious women, gangbangs, sadomasochism, and unthinkable physical violence. The porn children view today makes Playboy look like an American Girl doll catalog.

…the preadolescent and adolescent brain doesn’t know it’s all fake. It believes wholeheartedly what it sees. I certainly did.

Just awful, awful stuff.

While some pornographers might claim to be troubled by the knowledge that young kids are viewing their work and thus are influenced by it, suggested remedies are beyond laughable and demonstrate that they actually have no understanding of what’s happening:

Many “sex-positive” pornographers claim they can prevent this by mitigating artifice in their videos. One such personality is porn actress Stoya, who told The New York Times she believes porn can be a good thing.

Although Stoya admits she’s troubled about her work’s influence on young people (it apparently keeps her “awake at night”), her answer is to make her pornography more realistic, more female-centered, and more contextual. For example, Stoya lauds a practice in some BDSM porn (bondage, domination/discipline, sadism, and masochism) that encourages “aftercare,” which is essentially two partners “checking in” after brutalizing each other in bed.

Oh. Okay. Problem solved.

While I would like to believe that the majority of Americans, especially parents, have a problem with children viewing pornography, obviously not everyone does:

Nadine Strossen, the former national president of the ACLU, argue that minors’ access to porn content is a “free speech” issue, noting young people have a constitutional right to information about sexual health.

[Ed. Because incest, bestiality, extreme bondage, sex with unconscious women, gangbangs, sadomasochism, and unthinkable physical violence is all about “sexual health”.]

There is some legislative pushback taking place, however, and one hopes to see more states make similar bipartisan decisions:

…legislators are finally starting to step up. Louisiana state representative Laurie Schlegel was one of the first lawmakers to break ground on this issue. Her bill imposed age verification requirements on sites like Pornhub, and as a result, traffic to that site is down by 80 percent in her state. Other states have now followed suit, with similar protective bills gaining bipartisan support in Arkansas, Montana, Mississippi, Utah, Virginia, and Texas. These age verification bills are progress, and they must be replicated across America.

With that, I am reminded of an article I read a few years ago, wherein the popular performer, Billie Eilish opened up about viewing porn at a young age and the very negative impact it had on her:

“As a woman, I think porn is a disgrace. I used to watch a lot of porn, to be honest. I started watching porn when I was like 11,” she said, telling Howard it helped her feel like “one of the guys.” “I think it really destroyed my brain and I feel incredibly devastated that I was exposed to so much porn.”

She frequently watched violent pornography, which she believes contributed to her suffering from sleep paralysis and night terrors. The “abusive” porn also led to problems in the bedroom once she was older and had become sexually active herself.

“I’m so angry that porn is so loved, and I’m so angry at myself for thinking that it was okay,” she continued…

When I was 10 and 11-years old there was no internet. And despite a family implosion (parents divorced), I remained cocooned in the bubble of childhood and knew nothing of the adult world. I didn’t even know what divorce meant! I was still playing with dolls, roller skating on metal skates, reading Nancy Drew mysteries, riding bikes through the neighborhood, and occasionally watching The Beverly Hillbillies or Get Smart. I cannot imagine, not for one second, the devastating impact viewing the pornography described above would have had on me at that tender age, and the impact it would have on any future relationships I had.

Read the entire piece as the writer also provides links to studies showing what happens to developing minds when viewing porn, etc.

–Dana

Gov. Kemp Rejects State Republicans’ Effort To Oust Fani Willis

Filed under: General — Dana @ 11:49 am



[guest post by Dana]

Good on Gov. Kemp:

Georgia’s Republican Gov. Brian Kemp on Thursday rejected a plea from state Republicans to oust Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis following former President Donald Trump’s criminal indictment for election interference, marking a blow to Trump as he pleads not guilty to all charges.

In a press conference in Georgia, Kemp said he would refuse to hold a special session of the state legislature to remove Willis, who Trump has repeatedly called out in a series of tirades on his social media platform Truth Social, accusing her of being out to “get Trump.”

A large swath of prominent Republicans consistently react to efforts of accountability for the former president by attacking those responsible for the decision to investigate and prosecute him. Ultimately, and with few exceptions (see: Gov. Kemp) these Republicans reflexively continue to follow Trump’s lead in their capacity by echoing his eternal rallying cry: Witch Hunt!

Meanwhile, Trump wants to sever his Georgia case from Sydney Powell and Kenneth Chesebro, the only defendants who have requested speedy trials at this point in time:

Former President Donald Trump is seeking to sever his criminal election interference case in Georgia from any of his 18 co-defendants who are demanding that the case proceed quickly to trial, a Thursday court filing showed.

Trump earlier Thursday also waived his right to appear at his arraignment scheduled for next week.

“Respectfully, requiring less than two months preparation time to defend a 98-page indictment, charging 19 defendants, with 41 various charges including a RICO conspiracy charge with 161 Overt Acts, Solicitation of Violation of Oath by Public Officer, False Statements and Writings, Forgery, Influencing Witnesses, Computer Crimes, Conspiracy to Defraud the State, and other offenses would violate President Trump’s federal and state constitutional rights to a fair trial and due process of law,” Sadow wrote.

So far, I can’t locate a statement from Trump re Gov. Kemp’s decision this morning. However, after this many years of being entangled in Trump drama, pretty sure we already know what his reaction will be.

–Dana

8/30/2023

Mitch McConnell Freezes Up Again

Filed under: General — Dana @ 11:53 am



[guest post by Dana]

Yet another painful freeze-up from Mitch McConnell. This comes after a similar event last month, and before that, two falls, and one that left him with cracked ribs and a concussion:

Clearly, there is something seriously wrong here. McConnell, who is 81 years, is among a handful of aged politicians whose mishaps have become an issue of concern:

90-year-old Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) appeared confused and had to be coached to vote “aye” during a Senate Appropriations Committee hearing on the $831 billion Defense Appropriations bill.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell ((R-Ky.) suddenly appearing to freeze in mid-sentence during a weekly GOP leadership news conference and going silent for approximately 20 seconds before being walked away.

Beyond those two examples, we have the escalating worries swirling about 80-year-old President Joe Biden based upon his continued verbal and mental gaffes and miscues. They have sadly happened with such frequency that one need only google “Biden senior moments” to view dozens of them.

As a matter of fact, Democratic voters are becoming more vocal in their concerns about Biden being in the Oval Office for another four years:

In the poll, fully 77% said Biden is too old to be effective for four more years. Not only do 89% of Republicans say that, so do 69% of Democrats. That view is held across age groups, not just by young people, though older Democrats specifically are more supportive of his 2024 bid.

The AP-NORC survey went beyond posing questions and presenting choices. It also had a word association exercise, asking people to offer the first word or phrase that comes to mind at the mention of each man.

The answers underscored how age is a particular drag for Biden across party lines, even when people aren’t prompted to think about that, and how Trump largely escapes that only to draw disdain if not disgust on other fronts.

In those visceral responses, 26% mentioned Biden’s age and an additional 15% used words such as “slow” or “confused.” One Republican thought of “potato.” Among Democrats, Biden’s age was mentioned upfront by 28%. They preferred such terms over “president,” “leader,” “strong” or “capable.” One who approves of his performance nevertheless called him “senile.”

It’s interesting to note that, while physical/mental health is a factor in deciding whether to step down (or be expelled), so too is how to replace these aging and powerful politicians. Consider this with Mitch McConnell’s seat:

The governor of Kentucky is Democrat Andy Beshear. The Seventeenth Amendment tells us that if a senator leaves office due to death, resignation or expulsion, the governor of said state is empowered to appoint a replacement to complete the term or to hold office until a special election can take place.

Beshear obviously wouldn’t be inclined to appoint a Republican to fill McConnell’s seat…and McConnell isn’t up for re-election until 2026. Thus, straight politics appears to be the deciding factor here.

While party machinations and needs may add to an aged politician’s reluctance to step down when it’s obviously time to, I also think that the inevitable want/need for continued power, money, and influence can’t be ignored. Sadly, such is human nature. And at that level, the harder it would be to give up such perks and benefits. However, it’s important to hear from McConnell himself about his role in what he perceives to be a very critical moment in the GOP’s history:

“There are those who are trying to redefine what a Republican is — I’m not in that group,” he continued. “And so this is, I think, an important point for the future of the party, and given my place in my career at this point, this is the most important thing going on that I might be able to have some impact on.”

In the extensive interview, McConnell also discusses his concerns about NATO, Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine, and the fact that Republicans (newly elected, especially) are not concerned about Ukraine being defeated by Russia. This is where someone of McConnell’s age and experience is a great benefit to the Party.

Ultimately, however, the question really is:

At what point should human decency and compassion trump the political and ideological needs of those in power?

–Dana

Rudy Giuliani: Legally Liable In Harassed Election Workers’ Defamation Case

Filed under: General — Dana @ 11:14 am



[guest post by Dana]

Holding Rudy Giuliani accountable:

A federal judge ruled Wednesday that Rudy Giuliani is legally liable for defaming two Georgia election workers who became the subject of conspiracy theories related to the 2020 election that were amplified by Donald Trump in the final weeks of his presidency.

In an unsparing, 57-page ruling, U.S. District Court Judge Beryl Howell said Giuliani had flagrantly violated her orders to preserve and produce relevant evidence to the election workers, Ruby Freeman and Shaye Moss, resulting in a “default” judgment against him. She also ordered him to pay Freeman and Moss “punitive” damages for failing to fulfill his obligations.

From the order:

ORDERED that default judgment will be entered against defendant Rudolph W. Giuliani on his liability for plaintiffs’ defamation, intentional infliction of emotional distress, civil conspiracy, and punitive damage claims, pursuant to Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 37(e)(2)(C) and 37(b)(2)(A)(vi);

As a reminder, this is what Shaye Moss said happened to her as a result of Giuliani (and Trump’s) reprehensible lies and vile harassment of her:

At the urging of her boss, Moss said she checked her Facebook messages and there “were just a lot of horrible things there.” They included “a lot of threats, wishing death upon me, telling me that I’ll be in jail with my mother and saying things like, ‘Be glad it’s 2020 and not 1920.’”

“A lot of them were racist, a lot of them were just hateful,” Moss said.

She said her son also received threats and that at one point, people went to her grandmother’s house and tried to make a “citizen’s arrest.”

As a result of the harassment and for her safety, the FBI then instructed Ruby Freeman to leave her home. Here is a snapshot of her response to the events:

“It was horrible,” Freeman said. “I felt homeless. I can’t believe this person [Trump] has caused this much damage to me and my family, to have to leave my home.”

Freeman said she lost her reputation and a sense of security because Trump and Giuliani “decided to scapegoat me and my daughter to push their own lies about the election being stolen.”

“There is nowhere I feel safe, nowhere,” Freeman said. “Do you know how it feels to have the president of the United States target you? The president of the United States is supposed to represent every American — not to target one. But he targeted me — Lady Ruby, a small-business owner, a mother, a proud American citizen who stand up to help Fulton County run an election in the middle of the pandemic.”

Judge Beryl Howell wrote:

“Donning a cloak of victimization may play well on a public stage to certain audiences, but in a court of law this performance has served only to subvert the normal process of discovery in a straight-forward defamation case, with the concomitant necessity of repeated court intervention.”

Additionally:

Howell said that aside from an initial document production of 193 pages, the information Giuliani had turned over consisted largely of “a single page of communications, blobs of indecipherable data” and “a sliver of the financial documents required to be produced.”

The order is here.

Only the best people…right.

–Dana

8/29/2023

National Archives Finds 5400 Pseudonymous Biden Emails

Filed under: General — JVW @ 3:00 pm



[guest post by JVW]

Not a good look at all for No-Malarky Joe:

The National Archives and Records Administration has confirmed that it is in possession of nearly 5,400 emails, electronic records, and documents containing pseudonyms President Biden used as vice president.

Legal non-profit Southeastern Legal Foundation filed a Freedom of Information Act request in June 2022 for the records. Those included emails containing the names Robin Ware, Robert L. Peters and JRB Ware, pseudonyms Biden used while serving in the Obama administration, according to House Republicans investigating Hunter Biden’s overseas business dealings.

On Monday, the legal organization sued NARA to obtain the records, which it alleges could reveal that Biden shared confidential government knowledge with his son.

NARA confirmed the existence of thousands of records that include the pseudonyms in a June 24, 2022 email revealed as part of the lawsuit.

Recall that House Oversight Chairman James Comer has alleged that emails discussing Hunter Biden’s business dealings in Ukraine had been cc’d to Robert L. Peters. Defenders of the President argue that it wasn’t uncommon during the Obama Administration for senior White House officials to use secondary email accounts, and certainly we know that Hillary Clinton and even Barack Obama himself often ventured outside of official government messaging systems. But the number of different pseudonyms that Joe Biden is alleged to have used (at least one of which belonged to a Gmail account) is interesting, as interesting as the myriad number of shell corporations that his son set up in order to handle his assorted business dealings.

This may not turn into a smoking gun showing that Vice President Joe Biden actively sought to help his son make money in foreign countries, but it continues to hammer away at Team Biden’s protestations that they kept a wall of separation between the Old Man’s official duties and the Prodigal Son’s slick hucksterteering. The drip, drip, drip of unflattering information regarding Joe Biden’s actions is destined to further erode public trust in his honesty. More details are destined to come, even if the mainstream media does its best to ignore these developments.

– JVW

8/27/2023

Question: Where to Go in Ireland?

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 2:02 pm



If someone were going to be in Ireland for a little more than a week, where would they want to go and what would they want to see?

Hypothetically speaking, that is.

8/25/2023

Weekend Open Thread

Filed under: General — Dana @ 8:39 am



[guest post by Dana]

Let’s go!

First news item

Ahead of Trump surrender, Republicans opened an investigation into Fani Willis:

The Republican-led House Judiciary Committee opened an investigation into Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis Thursday over whether her prosecution of former President Trump is “politically motivated.”

In a letter to Willis announcing the probe, Judiciary Committee Chair Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) asked Willis to turn over a series of documents to the committee by Sept. 7.

State of play: “Your indictment and prosecution implicate substantial federal interests, and the circumstances surrounding your actions raise serious concerns about whether they are politically motivated,” Jordan wrote in the letter.

Jordan added that it was “noteworthy” that Willis had launched a reelection website that highlighted her investigation of Trump prior to announcing the indictment.

It’s become common practice for House Republicans to go after any individual or agency that attempts to hold Donald Trump accountable. So, no surprise here.

Second news item

After Wagner leader Yevgeny Prigozhin was assassinated, Vladimir Putin, the war criminal known for being an oh-so compassionate leader, paid his respects:

Vladimir Putin has praised Yevgeny Prigozhin as a “talented businessman”, but criticised him for making “serious mistakes” in his first remarks since the Wagner leader’s death.

“I knew Prigozhin for a long time, from the early 1990s. He had a difficult path and made serious mistakes in his life. But he got results – for himself, and when I asked him,” Putin said in a televised address.

The Russian leader expressed his condolences to the victims of the plane crash, which occured on Wednesday evening in the Tver region north-west of Moscow. A total of 10 people died, including six passengers and three crew members.

Putin said that the Wagner members killed in the incident had made a “significant contribution to our common cause of fighting the neo-Nazi regime in Ukraine”.

Putin did not comment on the cause of the crash, and said they would have to await the outcome of an official investigation.

[Narrator: The Kremlin says that Putin didn’t order the plane crash that killed Prigozhin.]

Ah:

Additionally: “According to the VChK-OGPU Telegram channel, a source says that “Prigozhin was sure that Putin would forgive him everything and was not afraid of anything. He said he knew a lot…””

Third news item

This is an embarrassment for the Republican Party:

“You all signed a pledge to support the Republican nominee,” said moderator Brett Baier. “If former President Trump is convicted in a court of law, would you still support him as your party’s choice? Please raise your hand if you would.”

Former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley, South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott, entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy, North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and former Vice President Mike Pence raised their hands, saying they would support Trump as the party’s nominee – even if he was convicted.

Former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchison did not raise his hand and former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie made a hand motion and later clarified he was not raising his hand in support of Trump.

To his credit, Chris Christie, who was booed for not raising his hand, hit the nail on the head:

“Someone’s got to stop normalizing this conduct,” said Christie. “Whether or not you believe that the criminal charges are right or wrong, the conduct is beneath the office of President of the United States.” Christie was met with both cheers and boos, to which he responded: “That’s the great thing about this country, booing is allowed — but it doesn’t change the truth.”

The chaos that the modern Republican Party has embraced and normalized with Trump will be to its everlasting shame.

Fourth news item

Chinese diplomat in New York endorses forced assimilation of Tibetan children:

Chinese consul-general Huang Ping, Beijing’s most senior diplomat in New York, this week defended the Chinese Communist Party’s forced assimilation of Tibetan children.

A report by the Tibet Action Institute, a nonprofit focused on human rights in the region, recently published a report detailing Beijing’s policy of forcing children to attend Chinese-government boarding schools, where they are effectively stripped of their Tibetan identity and required to parrot CCP propaganda. Estimates say that some 1 million Tibetan children have been forced into the schools.

Unbelievably, the report notes that while Secretary of State Blinken announced that the State Department would impose visa restrictions on officials involved in the re-education campaign, “Earlier this month, Huang Ping appeared on the same stage with over a dozen prominent New York Democrats, including Mayor Eric Adams and Representative Grace Meng, at a festival hosted by Hong Kong government agencies in Flushing, Queens. Earlier this year, he marched with Adams and Governor Kathy Hochul at a parade in Chinatown, and the office of Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg held a ceremony with the Chinese consulate-general to mark the repatriation of looted antiquities to China.”

Not a good look, Democrats. Not a good look at all.

Fifth news item

Speaking of Democrats, at least one is saying the quiet part out loud:

Dean Phillips is getting a little fed up with his party. The third-term Democratic congressman is on a “crusade,” he says. “I’m saying we need presidential diversity on the stage.”…Phillips has had a lot more media hits in recent weeks ever since he said Democrats need to challenge President Joe Biden in the presidential primary. In his words, he’s “just giving voice to private conversations” (he wouldn’t say with whom). The Democratic Party—and the country—shouldn’t just gamble on an octogenarian with a roughly 42% approval rating to beat Donald Trump, Phillips tells me.

“I came from the business world, and anybody in business knows you don’t just produce a product and then hope there’s a market for it,” he says. “What we tend to do as Democrats is kind of identify the product, and then try to convince people to buy it. I’m not trying to compare people to products, but that’s the analogy. And that’s what happened in 2016.”

“I love Joe Biden. I think he’s an extraordinary man. I think he saved the country. His policies, I voted for every single one of them, and I’ve helped market them. [I am] not someone who’s objecting to the past. I’m simply making an argument for the future. And I believe that we should, if he’s intent on being one of the products, I just think we should also offer some others.”

Phillips’s primary concern is Biden’s age. “Age is the main issue in this election, because we have two men who are older than Bill Clinton, who was president when I was in college.”

Sixth news item

But of course:

The former president left the Fulton County Jail at 7:55 p.m. Thursday, and for the first time in his four indictments on felony charges, authorities took — and released — Trump’s mug shot. By 9:22 p.m., the Trump Save America Joint Fundraising Committee was selling T-shirts, mugs, beverage coolers, bumper stickers and other merchandise with Trump’s face and the words “never surrender.”

The mug shot products range from $12 for a bumper sticker to $36 for long-sleeve T-shirts.

Seventh news item

Sure, keep giving parents more reasons to pull their kids out of public schools:

A federal court in Maryland decided Thursday that parents can’t opt their kids out of reading books with LGBTQ+ content in Montgomery County Schools.

In Tamer Mahmoud v. Monica B. McKnight, parents sought to reinstate a MCPS policy that would allow them to opt their children out of reading and discussing books with LGBTQ+ characters in elementary schools. The parents argued the content in these books was a form of indoctrination that violated their families’ religious beliefs.

The court disagreed. Judge Deborah L. Boardman, a Biden appointee, concluded that the parents’ “asserted due process right to direct their children’s upbringing by opting out of a public-school curriculum that conflicts with their religious views is not a fundamental right.”

The judge denied the parents’ request for a preliminary injunction that would allow them to opt-out their kids when school begins on August 28.

Note: “The LGBTQ+ books added to the district’s curriculum are included in pre-K through eighth-grade classrooms and feature references to gay pride parades, gender transition and pronoun preference.”

Have a great weekend.

–Dana

8/24/2023

Former President Donald Trump Arrested

Filed under: General — Dana @ 6:21 pm



[guest post by Dana]

This afternoon in Georgia, Donald Trump was booked into the Fulton County Jail. He was fingerprinted and a mug shot was taken. He faces criminal charges over his efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 election (including a racketeering charge and several fraud and false statement counts).

Speaking to reporters after leaving the jail, Trump continued to proclaim his innocence:

…I really believe this is a very sad day for America, and it should never happen.

If you challenge an election, you should be able to challenge an election.

I thought the election was rigged election, a stolen election, and I should have every right to do that.

As you know, you have many people that you’ve been watching over the years do the same thing, whether it’s Hillary Clinton or Stacey Abrams or many others.

When you have that great freedom through challenge, you have to be able to otherwise you can have very dishonest elections.

What has taken place here is a travesty of justice.

We did nothing wrong.

I did nothing wrong.

And everybody knows that I’ve never had such support.

And that goes with the other ones, too.

What they’re doing is election interference or trying to interfere with an election.

There’s never been anything like it in our country before.

This is their way of campaigning and this is one instance, but you have three other instances.

It’s election interference.

So, I want to thank you for being here.

We did nothing wrong at all.

And we have every right, every single right to challenge an election that we think is dishonest, that we think it’s very dishonest.

So, thank you all very much, and I’ll see you very soon.

Earlier in the day, Trump sent a “personal” note to his “Patriots”:

Today, I will be going to the notoriously violent jail in Fulton County, Georgia where I will be ARRESTED despite having committed NO CRIME. Isn’t it interesting that I went my entire life without ever getting arrested……But suddenly out of nowhere, once I decided to run for president as a political outsider and fight for the forgotten citizens of our country, I get ARRESTED FOUR TIMES within the span of just 5 months? Not only that, a judge has ruled that today’s spectacle may be televised for the entire world to see. The American people know what’s going on. This is a punishment handed down from the Deep State for daring to challenge the status quo and give a voice to the Silent Majority. The Left wants to intimidate YOU out of voting for a political outsider who puts the American people FIRST. But today, I’m walking into the lion’s den with one simple message on behalf of our entire movement: I WILL NEVER SURRENDER OUR MISSION TO SAVE AMERICA. When I walk into the jail to get wrongfully arrested, I will not cower, I will not sulk. I will stand tall and remain resolute in our mission to save America. And if you see me on TV during my sham arrest, just remember that YOU are the source of my courage, my hope, and my resolve to save our country. If you are doing poorly due to the sinister people in control of our country right now, don’t even think about donating! But if you can, please make a contribution to SAVE AMERICA during this dark chapter in our nation’s history.

From the report: “Directly below the statement, supporters were given the opportunity to donate up to $3,300 to the Trump Save America Joint Fundraising Committee,” because he needs even more money for uh, something

As always, Trump does not want to be held accountable for his actions because he believes he is above the law. And his supporters continue to infantilize the man-toddler by echoing his endless boo-hooing about being a victim of…the “Deep State,” the DOJ, the FBI, the MSM, Democrats, and I don’t know, even the weather!

Thus, it is so fitting that the self-consumed Trump declared the Stupid Idiot the winner of last night’s Republican debate all because he praised the former president. Two hack peas in a pod.

–Dana

Vivek Ramaswamy Is a Stupid Idiot

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:11 am



This is the guy whose closing statement said the U.S. Constitution (written in 1787) is what won us the American Revolution (begun in 1775):

The thing about him is: the audience of committed and enthusiastic GOP voters contained a large and vocal contingent of people who booed Chris Christie for criticizing Donald Trump, and cheered on amoral drivel like this:

There were cheers for good things, too, like Mike Pence doing his duty on January 6, 2021. But this electorate is generally lost. The populist cult fever has taken over a sizable enough contingent that the whole enterprise is a disaster at this point.

The fact that this stupid idiot will get a bounce for his stupid idiot performance says it all.

8/23/2023

Pre-Analysis and GOP Debate Open-Thread

Filed under: General — JVW @ 2:49 pm



[guest post by JVW]

A whole mess of Republicans will take to the stage Wednesday night to argue over which one of them will be the last one to bow out of a primary which Donald J. Trump seems destined to win. (That’s me being snarky: for the record, I believe that there is a very good chance that Trump’s luster diminishes mightily this fall and early winter.) Since I had a bit of fun four years ago comparing the Democrat candidates to the sort of people I encountered in high school, and since it’s an idea appropriated from the late, great humorist P.J. O’Rourke whose writings I revere, I figured I would do the same this time around with the GOP. So, in alphabetical order, here we go:

Governor Doug Burgum
Not particularly well known because he lives out on a large ranch about 40 minutes away from school. Seems like a good enough dude, but his life clearly revolves around ranch work. And while that no doubt has imparted valuable life skills upon him, it also means that he isn’t really a part of the jocks or nerds or go-getters or any of the other school subcultures. You imagine he would be dependable in a school crisis, but you just can’t tell if he can relate to your or your friends.

Governor Chris Christie
Smart and witty loudmouth who is always arguing with someone. Loves the speech and debate team where he excels in extemporaneous debate and Lincoln-Douglas Debate. Plays catcher for the baseball team and is adequate on the defensive end, but only hits .240 at the plate and comes up short in clutch situations. You genuinely like him, though when he’s had a few beers all he really wants to do is find someone and argue with him about trifling matters, and that gets really old quickly. Carries grudges, and forgets nothing.

Governor Ron DeSantis
Solid guy: good student, fine athlete, perceptive, bold, and dependable. On the other hand, he’s not super sociable (especially in large group gatherings) and he has the tendency to pick fights that may have best been avoided, like the time he got the basketball team banned from the weight room because they were practicing dance moves while the football team was trying to pump iron. Seems a bit too serious and focused at times. Everybody at the rival school hates him because he has captained teams which continually beat theirs, but now the BMOC at his own school has become threatened by him and is thus colluding with his obnoxious posse and the rival school to undermine him.

Governor Nikki Haley
Smart, kind, pretty, and dependable. She’s the daughter of immigrants and her family owns a small business, so instead of having a heavy extracurricular life she tends to her family obligations. This means that while she is respected and liked by her peers, they don’t seem to really know her too well. She’s trying to be more socially active, but is having a hard time breaking into the various cliques.

Governor Asa Hutchison
Pleasant guy, pretty goofy, doesn’t seem to have a whole lot on the ball but is likable anyway. Worked hard to get elected president of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, but then weirdly starting criticizing the group for being too focused on Jesus, of all things. Nobody really loves the guy, but nobody truly hates him either.

Governor Mike Pence
Soft-spoken and friendly stalwart who plays on the offensive line in football, wrestles in the winter, and throws the shot and discus in the spring. Good student, but missed out on finishing in the top ten. Has had only one girlfriend whom he has dated for his last three years. They will almost certainly marry after college. Respected and liked by a diverse group of people, but just doesn’t leave a super-strong impression upon anyone.

Mr. Vivek Ramaswamey
You were confused when suddenly one day your senior year this sophomore guy is seen sitting with the cool kids at lunch. Turns out he’s smart and personable, but he does give off the vibe that he’s trying too hard to flatter you and gain your confidence. And it seems a bit odd that suddenly he expresses the exact same opinions that all the popular boys have and he emulates their mannerisms. For a few months he is a big cheese among the in crowd, but eventually they forget about him and move on.

Senator Tim Scott
Super likable guy, always seen in the halls with a big smile on his face. Says a friendly “Hello!” to everyone and seems somehow to always know their names. Most of the school admires and is genuinely fond of him, not the least because he will call white guys “brother” from time to time, but for some reason he never really distinguishes himself from his classmates in any meaningful way. You always expect that one day he will emerge as a class leader, but that day for whatever reason never seems to come.

I’ve been going back-and-forth on whether to include a high school analysis of the one guy who won’t be there on Wednesday to take part in the debate. One the one hand, why should non-participants be included? I really don’t want to have to learn enough about Mayor Francis Suarez of Miami to figure out where he fits in my political Riverdale after all. But I guess this guy will be a looming specter haunting tonight’s proceedings, so here we go:

Former President Donald Trump
A rich kid who became the kingpin of the school early on when his indulgent parents invited all of his schoolchums to annual birthday parties starting in Kindergarten. These parties featured unhealthy food, magicians, pony rides, bouncy castles, cotton candy machines, arcade games, and anything else that captures a child’s attentino. The birthday parties had ceased by the time young Donald reached seventh grade, but they had served their purpose in making him the most popular kid at the school. He hasn’t thrown any kind of social event since then, but he always teases the planning of a huge party with six kegs and three bands that he plans to hold “very soon.” It of course never takes place. He openly mocks his teachers to their faces and then complains that he is being singled-out for punishment when he is sent to detention. Nearly everybody pretends to like and respect him, and there is a strong clique in the school who idolizes him, but there are grumblings that school spirit suffers under him and that it is time that a new BMOC be crowned. But for now, he still rules the school.

There you have it. I don’t know if I am going to watch in real-time tonight; I’m lazy enough to just catch the highlights on YouTube or something. But maybe I will tune in if only to be further disappointed on how horribly we have fallen since the days of true leaders.

Share your reactions to the debate in the comments.

– JVW

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