Thursday, March 29, 2018

Washington D.C. is the Most Unequal City in America

Bernie Sanders, Michael Moore and Elizabeth Warren, three lefty millionaires, got together to solve "income inequality" in a town hall broadcast live from the Capitol visitors center.

Washington D.C., where two out of the three parasites do business, has the worst income inequality in the country. The bottom fifth of Washington D.C. account for just 2% of the city’s income. It has one of the highest poverty rates in the country and the highest food stamp use. And under Obama, the Imperial City of the politicians and the poor was surrounded by some of the wealthiest districts in the country.

“Income Inequality in America: The Rise of Oligarchy and Collapse of the Middle Class,” the Sanders, Warren and Moore town hall, comes to progs from the most unequal and oligarchic city in America

If Bernie, Liz and Michael really want to see income inequality, they can take a walk away from the marble and glass edifices of big government to see what big government had wrought. It isn’t any of their usual villains, the corporations and banks, who made Washington D.C. so miserable.

It’s the triumph of socialism.

Washington D.C. and its bedroom communities are what the entire country would look like if the left got its way. A socialist apartheid state divided between the business of government and the poor.

But the three socialist stooges aren’t just in the business of politics. They’re millionaire poverty pimps.

Bernie Sanders made over $1 million pushing conspiracy theories about income inequality. Denouncing big business let him rent a private Delta 767 with a menu of herb crusted lamb loin, chocolate ganache and fine cheeses. The Sanders clan is up to 3 homes now and Bernie is using his clout to get two of his kids elected to political offices. Who better to lecture us on the “Rise of Oligarchy” than an oligarch?

Bernie made it from living on unemployment to the 1 percent using the government. But there’s only room for so many senators who can run for president in Washington D.C. That’s one government program you can’t replicate for everyone living in D.C. slums on government money.

Elizabeth Warren is there to show Bernie what a truly ambitious socialist poverty pimp can do.

Lizzie owns a $740K condo in D.C. a far more expensive Victorian home in Cambridge and has a net worth of over $15 million. She picked up a $625K advance for A Fighting Chance, a book attacking corporations, paid to her by a corporation. Her follow-up, This Fight is Out Right, earned her only a $200K advance last year.

Harvard Law School’s “first woman of color” also made $350,000 for teaching one class.

But there’s only so much room for a fake Cherokee asbestos lawyer slash consumer advocate who likes to tell other people they didn’t accomplish anything before going back to one of her luxurious homes.

Like Bernie, Lizzie is just fighting for the “little guy”. Here’s what that looks like.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, her own government agency, operates from a luxurious building that cost more per square foot than the Trump World Tower or the Bellagio in Vegas.

If only there were some sort of agency to protect taxpayers from the CFPB and Elizabeth Warren.

And then there’s Michael Moore.

Moore has his own fake working class story and he rode his fake anti-capitalist documentaries to a fortune in cash, much of it through alleged serial rapist Harvey Weinstein. At one point, Moore owned 9 homes. That’s more homes than Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren combined. The pudgy leftist got famous pushing gun control, but has been known to go places with nine bodyguards.

The town hall paid tribute to unions. Michael Moore busted them.

Two of his writers were warned that if they operated under union rules, one of them would be fired. And so they had to keep working without health benefits instead.

Michael Moore and Bernie Sanders inveigh against employers. But they were terrible bosses.

Bernie, the friend of the working man, was known to his staff as “abusive”, a “screamer and a table-banger.” His campaign had its own #MeToo chapter with an accused sexual harasser being covered for by the Bernie campaign. "I remember feeling physically unsafe," his California outreach director said.

It’s hard to think of three worse choices to discuss income inequality and oligarchy than three millionaires with more than a dozen homes between them who treat their employees like garbage.

But Sanders, Warren and Moore aren’t just random rich people. They’re poverty pimps who got rich by pretending that they had something to say about the plight of working class people in America.

Washington D.C. is full of poverty pimps. They come in all shapes, sizes and colors. But the one thing that they have in common is that they get rich by keeping the poor where they are. Their only solution is to turn the working class into the welfare class where they can be milked for book deals and documentaries. And office buildings that cost more per square foot than a luxurious Vegas casino.

Much like Washington D.C., Sanders, Warren and Moore have something to tell us about income inequality and whose fault it really is.

"How do we create an economy that works for everybody?" Bernie asked.

Bernie’s answer is to turn the rest of the country into Washington D.C. with lots of government money for those on top and government subsidies for those on the bottom. There’s not much of a middle class in Washington D.C. and the Imperial City had one of the biggest middle class declines in the country.

It’s odd that Bernie and Lizzie don’t have much to say about that. But what can they say?

Take away everything except the government and its satellite industries, contractors, lobbyists, experts, non-profits and academics, and you end up with the apartheid urban template that is Washington D.C.

Moore, Warren and Sanders talk about a middle class because they know that’s where much of their audience comes from. But they ideologically loathe it. In their ideal world, there’s no middle class. None of the consumers who, as Bernie famously decried, want a “choice of 23 underarm spray deodorants.” And none of the small businessmen who, as Warren even more famously complained, think they built it.

The middle class is naturally conservative. It’s aspirational. It seeks security, not revolution. And what leftists are really peddling is a revolution that will leave them even more on top than they already are.

If you want to see income inequality in America, don’t tune in to watch three leftist millionaires put on their outrage show, look at their homes, and look at where that power and money comes from.

It doesn’t come from hard work.

It’s hard to point to anything that Bernie ever accomplished. Like Moore and Warren, he got very rich because of his politics. Income inequality made these three poverty pimps into millionaires.

They’re very rich because they’re members of the right party with the right views.

Washington D.C. and the big blue cities where income inequality is at its worst are full of those like them. Venezuela, the Soviet Union and North Korea don’t always happen overnight. The middle class is slowly hollowed out by a growing nomenklatura whose only expertise is in wealth redistribution.

And that’s how you end up with millionaire poverty pimps and no middle class.

Saturday, March 24, 2018

Who Runs March for Our Lives?

Follow the money.

It’s a strange political fact, but nearly every major anti-gun group has been a front group. The NRA is maligned 24/7 and yet it’s completely obvious whom it represents. Despite the efforts to tie it to everyone from firearms manufacturers to the Russians (if you can’t tie any random Republican thing to the Russians these days, you won’t be working at the Washington Post or CNN for very long), it represents its five million members. Anti-gun groups tend to represent shadowy networks.

Take Everytown, the noisiest and most dishonest anti-gun group on the scene. The one consistent thing about anti-gun groups is that that they are usually the opposite of what their name says they are.

Everytown for Gun Safety was formed out of two other groups: Moms Demand Action and Mayors Against Illegal Guns. Both are actually front groups for Michael Bloomberg, the lefty billionaire and former boss of the Big Apple, who used New York City resources to host at least one of its websites.

So Everytown is really New York City.

March for Our Lives is on every cable channel, but who runs it? The photogenic teen fronts are out front. But it’s obvious to everyone that a bunch of teens don’t have the resources and skills to coordinate a nationwide movement. Instead it’s the experienced activists who are actually running things.

The March for Our Lives Fund is incorporated as a 501(c)(4). Donations to 501(c)(4) groups are not tax- deductible. And they don’t have to disclose donors. That’s why they’re a great dark money conduit.

But the March for Our Lives website suggests that donors who want to make a tax-deductible donation should write a check to the “March For Our Lives—Everytown Support Fund”. How will Bloomberg’s organization provide support for the supposed student group?

Why have two March for Our Lives Fund, one dark and one light? And why is one being routed through the godfather of the gun control lobby?

When it comes to March for Our Lives, the questions never end.

The March for Our Lives permit application was filed by Deena Katz, a co-executive director of the Women's March Los Angeles Foundation. This wasn’t just a little bit of professional activist assistance.

The application lists Katz as the “Person in Charge of Event”.

Katz is a former Dancing With the Stars and current Bill Maher producer. She’s also the former owner of Talent Central, a Los Angeles talent agency, The leaked application lists her as the president of the March for Our Lives Fund.

Media contacts for March for Our Lives are being handled by 42 West. The agency is a full service PR firm operating out of New York and Los Angeles that represents major celebrities. 42 West was supposedly recommended by George Clooney who was one of a number of major celebrity donors.

Where did all those millions of dollars go? Good question.

“They’re being directed by people with knowledge of how to responsibly spend this money and it’s going to be very transparent. Every penny is going to be accounted for," Jeff Kasky, the father of one of the students, claimed.

Who are those people? A leaked document reveals that the March for Our Lives Action Fund is actually overseen by six directors and is incorporated in Delaware.

So far we have Los Angeles, New York and Delaware, but not Florida.

Donations are being directed to, “March For Our Lives Fund, 16130 Ventura Blvd Ste 320, Encino, CA 91435.” That matches the listed office address on the application for the Wishnow Ross Warsavsky & Company. The tax firm appears to have no website.

The six directors lean toward Los Angeles.

There's Aileen Adams, the head of Do Good LA, who had served as the Deputy Mayor for the Office of Strategic Partnerships for Los Angeles. Adams was also UCLA's Vice Provost for Strategic Alliances.

Nor is she the only UCLA person on the list.

There's also George Kieffer, chair of UCLA's Board of Regents, who was named one of the most influential lawyers in California. He also held a variety of other political positions and headed the California State Protocol Foundation which funds expenses for Governor Jerry Brown.

Then there’s Nina Vinik who serves as the Program Director for the Gun Violence Prevention Program at the Joyce Foundation. The Joyce Foundation has been notable for its gun control efforts and it’s not surprising to find it here. The Joyce Foundation also set up the anti-gun Fund for a Safer Future.

One story claims that, "Several members of the Fund for a Safer Future are organizing internally to explore new ways of engagement in the wake of Parkland.” Another states that the Joyce Foundation, “funds research to help grantees understand how different audiences think about the issue. It's up to grantees to come up with tactics.” After Parkland, Nina wrote a militant editorial using some very familiar talking points, like, “Maybe it’s time to ask the Supreme Court about the rights of the Parkland parents to see their kids grow up.” The Joyce Foundation and Nina are based out of Chicago.

Over in Washington D.C., there's Vernetta Walker of BoardSource acting as the fund’s Secretary and Jeri Rhodes of the Friends Committee on National Legislation acting as its Treasurer.

And then out of Madison, Wisconsin, comes Melissa Scholz.

Florida is notably absent from the roll call. Instead the organization, one of a number of seeming incarnations of the March for Our Lives brand, draws on established activist talent from the usual places, Chicago, Los Angeles and Washington D.C. There’s nothing particularly local about it.

March for Our Lives is funded by Hollywood celebs, it’s led by a Hollywood producer and its finances are routed through an obscure tax firm in the Valley. Its treasurer and secretary are Washington D.C. pros. And a top funder of gun control agendas is also one of its directors.

None of this has much to do with Parkland. The mass shooting by a mentally ill man who should have been committed and arrested long before he carried out his massacre was a political opportunity.

Now that opportunity is being exploited to the hilt by a professional class of political activists.

Gun control activists wring their hands over the NRA. They claim that a special interest lobby is illegitimately thwarting the “will of the people”. Yet it’s the anti-gun groups that are invariably false fronts. It’s very clear who runs the NRA. But the latest fake anti-NRA group is a nebulous shadow. Out front are the high school students and out back are the professional activists.

And who is really behind the whole thing? Hollywood celebs, Bloomberg, a network of organizations?

We know who supports the NRA. You can see NRA stickers on car windows even in the bluest cities in the country. But who really supports the anti-gun political network? You’ll need to spend hours sorting through paperwork, following the trail, comparing addresses and researching names, to even get a hint.

That’s what an illegitimate lobby thwarting the will of the people really looks like.

Instead of March for Our Lives, maybe it’s time to March for the Truth?



Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

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Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Intersectionality, Tribalism and Farrakhan

A funny thing happened on the way to the intersectional future. The proverbial knapsack was unpacked in the Women’s March and inside wasn’t just racial tribalism, but racial and religious supremacism.

Why do Tamika Mallory and Linda Sarsour of the Women’s March like Farrakhan and his hate group?

The Nation of Islam preaches that black people are the master race. It doesn’t just hate white people, Jews and a whole bunch of other folks. It hates them out of a conviction in its own superiority. According to its teachings, “the Blackman is the original man” and lighter skinned people were “devils” created by an evil mad scientist to rule over black people until they are destroyed by UFOs.

It even teaches that monkeys are descended from white people.

Progressive media essays defending Obama, Rep. Keith Ellison, Rep. Danny Davis, Mallory and other black leaders for their Farrakhan links have urged concerned liberals to look at the positive aspects of the Nation of Islam, its love for black people, not the negative, its hatred for white people.

But it is the “positive” that is the problem.

Intersectionality promises to package tribal identity politics into a utopia of social justice. But the essence of tribalism is the superiority of your people and the inferiority of all other groups. Tribalism doesn’t have to be violent, hostile or hateful. Most peoples are tribal after all. But when you combine the most radical identity politics elements, as the left does, then bigoted supremacism is certain.

The clown car of identity politics runs smoothest when it has a common enemy: white people. Coalitions like the Women’s March assemble an array of groups who are united by their hatred of Trump, white people, Israel and root beer. And it works as long as no one lifts up the hood and looks at the engine.

Black nationalism is racist, sexist, anti-Semitic and homophobic. The Nation of Islam isn’t an exception. From Jeremiah Wright, “Italians… looked down their garlic noses”, to Eldridge Cleaver, “rape was an insurrectionary act” to Amiri Baraka, the ugliest possible supremacist bigotry is its natural state.

"We are all beautiful (except white people, they are full of, and made of s___)," Amiri Baraka wrote. "The fag's death they gave us on a cross... they give us to worship a dead jew and not ourselves."

“I got the extermination blues, jew-boys. I got the Hitler syndrome figured... So come for the rent, jewboys,” the Guggenheim fellowship, PEN and American Book Award winner, and former Poet Laureate of New Jersey ranted.

Baraka was one of the country’s most celebrated black nationalist poets and he was a former member of the Nation of Islam. Baraka’s Black Mass circulated the NOI’s racist creation myth.

It was the NOI’s conviction of black superiority and white inferiority that attracted Baraka and so many other black nationalists. The NOI is one of a variety of black supremacist religious groups, from the similarly exotic Moorish and Black Hebrew churches, to NOI splinter groups such as Five-Percent Nation and black nationalist churches like the one attended by the Obamas and presided over by Jeremiah Wright. But religious black supremacism is only a component of a larger cultural movement that lies at the heart of black nationalism and mingles historical conspiracy theories with racial supremacism.

The comingling of black nationalism with intersectional politics has produced a new generation (often of second-generation radicals) that dresses up its racism not only in the lyricism of the old black nationalism of Wright and Baraka, but in the obtuse academic jargon of intersectionality.

That’s where Tamika Mallory and Ta-Nehisi Coates come from. But political word salads and poetry only conceal what you choose not to pay attention to. And that’s why we’re talking about Louis Farrakhan.

The mass of progressive media articles, essays and explainers deployed to protect the Women’s March can be summed up as, “Stop paying attention.” And what we’re not supposed to be paying attention to is the slow death of liberalism and its substitution by the intolerant tribal extremism of identity politics.

It’s why the echo chamber of progressive media has turned against the New York Times editorial page where too many articles questioning identity politics and political censorship have appeared. Bari Weiss and Quinn Norton, articulate young women, are the most immediate targets, but the larger target is James Bennet, the page’s gatekeeper, who is unwisely giving liberals a glimpse of where they’re headed.

The remaining liberals still wandering the open plains of a dying ecosystem don’t understand that they are becoming extinct. When they endorse vocal identity politics movements, it is because they believe that addressing the grievances of their extremists is a necessary step to a tolerant colorblind society.

They haven’t grasped that a tolerant multiracial society is the last thing supremacists of any race want.

And the left tells them what they want to hear, that the strident tone of the activists is a momentary phenomenon triggered by their fury at injustice and oppression. Once we’re all intersectionalized and truthfully reconciled, the pain underlying the appeal of a Farrakhan or a Wright will dissipate.

It’s a lie. And they know it’s a lie.

Intersectionality is a lie. Like the Nation of Islam, it’s not just a lie in its negative hateful aspects, but in its promise of a utopia once the “white devils” and their “white privilege” are out of the way.

Groups of identity politics extremists and their white cishet lefty allies can only be briefly united by the negative, not the positive. The “call-out culture” meant to spread social justice through the movement isn’t just a form of political terror; it fails to reach the innate bigotry of each identity politics group.

The meltdown of the Women’s March shows why intersectionality was always a Potemkin Village.

Identity politics movements can’t fight bigotry, because they are naturally bigoted. Instead of actually rejecting bigotry, they project it on a convenient target like Trump, and then pretend that by destroying him, they can cleanse society. The more targets they destroy, the more they need to find to maintain an alliance whose only true unifying principle is a mutual denial of each other’s supremacist bigotries. And so the battle against racism becomes a war against microaggressions and structural white supremacy.

The whole thing is a ticking time bomb. And it keeps going off every few years. When it blows up, lefty activists rush out, as they are doing now, to plead, wheedle and warn that the real enemy is “white supremacy” and everyone needs to stop paying attention to the racist or sexist views of their own allies.

These “rainbow coalitions” of racist radicals don’t fight bigotry; they mobilize bigots for racial wars.

Tamika Mallory praising Farrakhan isn’t shocking. It would be more shocking if she didn’t. It’s hard to find major black figures in politics and the entertainment industry who don’t hang out with him.

Both Jesse Jackson and Barack Obama, the first two serious black presidential candidates, did. The Congressional Black Caucus hosted him. London Mayor Sadiq Khan acted as his lawyer. The list of black entertainers is all but endless. Snoop Dogg, Ice Cube (both members), Michael Jackson, Eddie Murphy, Spike Lee, Arsenio Hall, Common, Kanye West, Mos Def, Young Jeezy and Erykah Badu to name a few.

Not every individual who meets up with Farrakhan necessarily shares all his bigoted views, but many find his tribal affirmation of black superiority appealing and they value that more than they do any kind of tolerant society. That’s what Tamika Mallory, in her own awkward way, was trying to tell us.

Black nationalism is a tribal cause. It will always put its people first. The same is true of the rest of the hodgepodge of political identity groups that form up the intersectional chorus. No amount of calling out will change that. That’s why the calling out is mostly directed at safe targets, preferably white.

There is no larger unity at the end of the rainbow. Only smoother versions of Farrakhan. Barack instead of Baraka. Rants about “white devils” and “satanic Jews” filtered through academic jargon.

A movement of bigotries can only divide us. And that’s all identity politics has to offer America. Instead of equal rights in a united nation, we will be members of quarreling tribes. And those tribes, like Farrakhan’s fans, will be incapable of seeing members of other tribes as having the same worth they do.

And people who don’t believe that the “other” has the same worth, won’t grant him the same rights.

The left claims that it’s fighting for equality. What it’s actually fighting for is a tribal society where the notion of equal rights for all is as alien as it is in Iraq, Rwanda and Afghanistan, where democracy means tribal bloc votes and where the despotism of majority rule invariably ends in terror and death.



Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

Click here to subscribe to my articles. And click here to support my work with a donation.

Thank you for reading.

Saturday, March 17, 2018

The Dossier Gang That Didn't Know Anything

“I know nothing,” isn’t just the motto of Sergeant Schultz. It’s also the Clinton motto. And Christopher Steele, the Brit whom the Clinton campaign hired to find out things for them, also knows nothing.

Or at least that’s the theme of the sprawling New Yorker profile of Steele, his dossier and his associates.

Steele, Jane Mayer, its authoress, tells us, is a brilliant researcher and we should take his word about all his allegations involving President Trump. Even the ones that aren’t true and don’t make any sense.

But he doesn’t know anything.

Take the Cody Shearer memo, the document authored by a Clinton plumber and which Steele passed along to the FBI as confirmation of his claims. The existence of the Shearer memo raised serious questions about whether the Clintons weren’t just paying Steele to dig up dirt, but were providing it. Some have speculated that Shearer’s smears were the original basis for Steele’s dossier.

But wait a minute.

Steele knew nothing. The New Yorker asks us to believe that their brilliant and trustworthy researcher passed along Shearer’s smears to the FBI without knowing who he was. ”Steele wasn’t aware that Shearer had longtime ties to the Clintons,” Mayer tells us, “as did Sidney Blumenthal, a Clinton ally, who had given Shearer’s report to Winer.”

How could Steele ever be expected to know anything about the men whose material he was passing on to the FBI? Assuming, quite improbably, that Steele didn’t recognize the name of a close adviser to a former Secretary of State who had recently been involved in a foreign policy scandal, it would have taken him all of 60 seconds on Google to discover who Shearer and Blumenthal were.

Steele’s Sergeant Schultz routine betrays incompetence or dishonesty.

Either Steele was so ridiculously incompetent that he sent intelligence materials to the FBI from random people whose names he never checked. Or he’s obscuring his connections to the Clintons the way that Clintonworld is obscuring its links to Steele and the dossier that it paid for, but knew nothing about.

Mayer’s New Yorker profile insists that, “Steele turned out to be a secret kept from the campaign”. John Podesta, Hillary’s campaign chair, only found out about his own campaign’s opposition research, from the media. Robby Mook was just as clueless. Not only did Steele not know whose opposition research he was passing to the FBI, but the Clinton campaign didn’t know anything about its own opposition research.

But in that case, why was it paying for opposition research that it didn’t know anything about?

The only Clintonite who knew about it, according to Mayer, was Marc Elias and his knowledge was protected by attorney-client confidentiality. And even he didn’t know anything. When Podesta told Senate Intelligence staffers that he didn’t know anything about the dossier, Marc Elias was right there.

“Podesta and Mook have maintained that they had no idea a former foreign intelligence officer was on the Democrats’ payroll until the Mother Jones article appeared,” the New Yorker profile tells us.

Podesta met with Senate Intelligence Committee staff members on Nov 18, 2017. On Monday, he denied it. On Tuesday, the Washington Post conveniently reported that the Clinton campaign had funded the dossier. That was perfect timing. Podesta could claim to have found out about his own opposition research the day after he claimed not to have known about it. That’s some real collusion.

But the Mother Jones article linked to by the profile is dated Oct 31, 2016. Even accounting for some really late deliveries, it would appear that Podesta did know what he claimed not to have known.

Not only are we being asked to believe that Christopher Steele knows everything that goes on in Moscow, but has no idea whose memo he was passing along to the FBI, but we’re being told that the Clinton campaign was spending money on opposition research that it didn’t even know about. This opposition research was then passed around to the media and the FBI without them ever knowing it.

The Clinton campaign was also far too noble to actually use the “sex stuff” in the opposition research that it didn’t know about. According to Fusion GPS boss Glenn Simpson, “Sex stuff is kind of worthless in a campaign.” That’s the same campaign whose backers were offering Trump accusers up to $750K.

The Clinton campaign thought the sex stuff was worthless even as Clinton associates Cody Shearer and Sidney Blumenthal were using the State Department’s Jonathan Winer to pass a “sex stuff” memo to Steele, who then passed it to the FBI. And Shearer and Blumenthal somehow came up with the same material as Steele, without ever having seen his dossier. But if they came up with it independently, why was the Clinton campaign paying all that money to a British former intelligence agent to produce it?

The Clinton campaign had no idea what Steele was doing. Steele had no idea what the Clinton campaign was doing. None of them knew anything even when they were very clearly coordinating.

After spending much of the article trying to immunize the Clinton campaign and Steele from accusations that they were coordinating, Jane Mayer is forced to report her own attendance at a Steele event. “These encounters were surely sanctioned in some way by Fusion’s client, the Clinton campaign,” she mentions. It’s a strange note in an article dedicated to arguing the exact opposite. Why mention it? Because it’s quite likely that Mayer knew of a Clinton link to the briefing and is immunizing herself.

That’s how the game is played.

So the Clinton campaign “sanctioned” Steele’s briefings to the media in “late summer”, yet the Clinton campaign knew nothing about Steele or the meetings about his dossier that it was sanctioning.

Sergeant Schultz, please email your private server.

But meanwhile everyone except the Clinton campaign knew about its Steele dossier. Steele passed the dossier to Jonathan Winer, a State Department employee, who then passed Shearer’s material to Steele. How did Winer get to be in the dossier and memo business? He worked for the Clintons in the government and for a lobbying firm linked to the Clintons.

But we’re expected to believe that he got into this on his own without any campaign involvement.

Steele and Winer trade opposition research. Winer passes the Clinton opposition research that Steele gives him to State. And Steele passes the Clinton opposition research from Winer to the FBI. Two versions of opposition research from the same source were being laundered through the government by two apparatchiks who traded the opposition research that they were laundering to muddy the trail.

Winer dragged in Victoria Nuland and then John Kerry. But they also knew nothing. “The State Department officials didn’t know who was funding Steele’s research, but they could see how politically explosive it was,” Mayer writes. It’s the fall of 2016. Who could they have thought was funding opposition research? Gary Johnson, Jill Stein or John Kasich? Winer was passing along material from Sidney Blumenthal, yet he had no clue which campaign Hillary’s “old friend” could be associated with?

“I know nothing.”

Steele didn’t know where the Clinton opposition research he was passing along was coming from. The Clinton campaign didn’t know anything about the opposition research it was paying for. And the State Department officials who were routing Clinton opposition research to Steele and Steele’s Clinton dossier to the FBI had no idea which campaign might be involved in all. They all knew nothing.

Everyone in this fictional thriller is always doing things purely on their own initiative.

"On my own, I shared a copy of these notes with Steele," Winer writes of Shearer’s memo. And then Steele goes off, on his own, and sends the Shearer memo to the FBI. Steele independently contacts the FBI. Winer independently brings in the leadership of the State Department. They don’t know anything and they never coordinate with anyone. Including the people who are paying them.

And even though Steele couldn’t figure out whom a famous Clinton associate might be representing, and the State Department couldn’t figure that out either, and the Clinton campaign couldn’t even find out what was in its own opposition research, we should take all their allegations about Trump seriously.

These same ladies and gentlemen who want us to believe that they couldn’t tie their own shoes expect us to overturn the results of the previous election because while they don’t know a single thing that happens in their own campaigns and departments, they know everything that goes on in Moscow.





Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

Click here to subscribe to my articles. And click here to support my work with a donation.

Thank you for reading.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

An Obama Photo Worth a Thousand Lies

When a a major Obama news photo story broke, the media was there to capture it. A 2-year-old girl was photographed looking at a really terrible painting of Michelle Obama.
"'A moment of awe': Photo of little girl captivated by Michelle Obama portrait goes viral," Washington Post cheered.  "Little girl awestruck by Michelle Obama's portrait believes she's a queen," urgently reported CNN. The sum total of this story is that a little girl looked at a portrait of Michelle.

Eat your heart out, North Korea. Our fake news propaganda is even tackier than yours.
Recently, a photo was released of Barack Obama meeting with Louis Farrakhan. The photo had been suppressed all these years to protect Obama’s career. Farrakhan was the racist leader of a hate group who had praised Hitler and described Jews as “satanic”. And yet he had met with the future president at a Congressional Black Caucus event. A CBC member, Rep. Danny Davis, had even praised Farrakhan.
You might think there’s a story in all that. And you would be wrong.
There isn’t a single Washington Post story on the photo. Not one. The same paper that believed its readers needed to be informed that a little girl had been photographed looking at a bad painting of Michelle Obama hasn’t found the time to report on the cover up of a meeting between top Democrats, including a future president, and the leader of a racist hate group that had once allied with the KKK.
It’s not that the Washington Post can’t report on Farrakhan. Or use Farrakhan to attack a president.
In ’15, the Post ran, “The bigotry of Trump and Farrakhan” and in ’16, “Why the Nation of Islam is praising Donald Trump”. Its stories about Obama and Farrakhan insist that the two men hate each other. A ’15 piece even attempted to link Farrakhan to Clarence Thomas, instead of Obama.  
The Washington Post can report on Farrakhan when attacking Republicans. It just won’t report on Obama’s links to Farrakhan. Neither will CNN. The only mentions of the photo on its site come from CNN personalities like Jake Tapper and Michael Smerconish. CNN found the time to report on a photo of a dog’s ear that it claimed looked like President Trump. But not on a photo of Obama and Farrakhan.
I reached out to Washington Post editor Marty Baron and media columnist Margaret Sullivan asking them to explain their paper’s embargo on the Farrakhan photo.  There has been no response.
Instead of coverage, the Washington Post has engaged in a cover up.
Ever since Obama left office, the media has reported on all sorts of photos of him. None of these photos are actually significant. The stories are puff pieces of the kind you expect to find in North Korea.
The New York Times, the Washington PostTime and other media outlets found it vital over the years to report on a photo of a boy patting Obama on the head. They continued revisiting the photo even after Obama was out of office. And then ran stories of the boy looking back on that “historic” head patting.
If only they had done a fraction of the research on a photo of Obama meeting with a hate group leader at an official Democrat function as they did on a photo of him mugging for the camera with a little boy.
"Photo speaks volumes about Obama and race," is how the Washington Post wrote it up. Does the photo of Obama with a black nationalist racist leader who praised Hitler say anything about race?
Nah.
The Washington Post dedicated yet another piece to yet another photo of Obama and a little boy.  “A touched cheek and hope for the future,” it declared. CNN, for its part, ran, "Obama reacts to child's White House tantrum." The media finds staged photos of its beloved leader as newsworthy as any state propaganda agency in a dictatorship. But actual newsworthy photos get buried out back at midnight.
The propaganda photos were mostly taken by Pete Souza, Obama's Official White House Photographer. Souza had been brought on board to do his best Leni Riefenstahl shtick since 2005 when the Chicago Tribune assigned him to "document" Obama's first year in the Senate. That turned into a book, “The Rise of Barack Obama”, released just in time for the full launch of the Obama presidential campaign.
New senators don't normally have a former White House photog following them around. But Obama was being groomed for the White House even before he walked into the Senate. Souza was selected for the Chief Photo Propagandist gig by the Tribune’s Jeff Zeleny in ’04. Zeleny later became infamous, after switching to the New York Times, for asking Obama how “enchanted” he was by his first 100 days.
Obama wasn’t enchanted, but the media was. It was the Chicago Tribune whose dirty trick of unsealing the divorce records of Obama’s Republican opponent got him to the Senate.  And having used dirty tricks to get him there, it funded his hagiography without reporting it as a campaign contribution.
Behind the cute propaganda photos was a darker truth.
The White House Correspondents Association protested the ban on independent photographers. “Journalists are routinely being denied the right to photograph or videotape the President while he is performing his official duties,” they complained.
While President Trump allows the media to photograph him as much as its shutterbugs want, Obama’s official image was a carefully manufactured collaboration made to appear casual and natural.
Instead of risking unflattering shots, Obama Inc. just tossed out propaganda pics from Pete. But photojournalists also participated in staging photos of Obama. During his live speeches, still photographers would be kept out to avoid any unflattering pictures of the beloved leader moving his simpering lips. Then when he had finished speaking, the photogs were allowed in to take posed shots of Obama pretending to speak even while he was saying nothing.
That is a good summary of how the media covered Obama and how it’s still covering for him.
The media found the time to turn 5 different photos of Obama posing with kids into stories. It pretended that some of these photos, taken with African-American children, said something about race.
No, they didn’t.
The photo that does say something about race is the one of Obama smiling next to a notorious racist. And how many other photos like it remain buried? How many are locked away in a vault somewhere, like the Los Angeles Times’ infamous Obama Khalidi tape, awaiting the day when they no longer matter?
The Obama Farrakhan photo can’t be locked up again. But mention of it can be locked away by the media which will instead urgently report on a photo of a little girl looking at a portrait of Michelle Obama. Or a photo of a little boy patting Obama on the head. Or Obama with a baby.
Just like the countless propaganda photos and posters of Hitler, Stalin, Mao and Kim Jong-un with the kiddies. Here’s an adorable photo of the North Korean dictator at an orphanage. You won’t believe how cute this photo of Stalin holding a little girl is. Especially once you find out he murdered her parents. This snap of Hitler with the daughter of his chief propagandist, who was murdered when Hitler’s doctor forced cyanide tablets into her mouth, was meant to make people think he wasn’t a monster.
And this shot of Saddam Hussein ruffling the hair of a 5-year-old British hostage will melt your heart.
There’s a reason that dictators are often depicted with children. Yes, it makes them seem cuddlier. But it’s also the essence of tyranny for the servants of the people to play the parents of the people instead.
The people are their children who need to be told what to do and disciplined when we misbehave.
Soviet propaganda named Stalin, “Father of Nations”. (When he invaded other nations, he was just exercising his parental prerogatives.) Hitler was the “Father of the German People”. And Obama?
“The President of the United States is, you know, our boss. But also, you know, the president and the first lady are kind of like the mom and the dad of the country. And when your dad says something, you listen, “ said Chris Rock, at a gun control rally back in the Obama era.
 And you don’t need to ask why daddy is kissing Louis Farrakhan. It’s none of your business.
That’s what the media is really telling us. And it’s telling that we have the same media as Russia, China and North Korea that runs propaganda photos of its beloved leader while smearing his opponents.
The media’s Obama kiddy photos and its sullen silence about the Farrakhan photos do tell us something. They tell us that we narrowly survived a cult of personality. And that we aren’t out of the woods yet.
The dictator is out of the White House. But his lackeys still control the news.
Change will come when the Berlin Wall of silence about the Farrakhan photo falls and when the Fuhrerbunker in which the Khalidi tape is buried pops open. We’ll know when the spying, the lies, the dirty tricks of the tyranny under which we’re still living come crashing down around its heads.
And then we’ll know that we are finally free.



Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

Click here to subscribe to my articles. And click here to support my work with a donation.

Thank you for reading.

Monday, March 12, 2018

Fake Antisemitism and Real Antisemitism

After weeks of outrage at the close ties between top Democrats and Louis Farrakhan, the leader of an anti-Semitic hate group, the media finally condemned anti-Semitism by a top political official.

President Trump and OMB Director Mick Mulvaney had referred to outgoing NEC Director Gary Cohn as a “globalist.” And “globalist,” according to Think Progress, the Huffington Post, Salon and Vox, is an “anti-Semitic slur.” Those are the same media outlets that had no problem using “globalist” as a slur when targeting Trump. HuffPo had published a piece tarring him as “Trump: The Globalist Plutocrat” and Vox had described Trump going to Davos, “the world’s biggest party for globalist elites.”

Both Trump and Mulvaney were praising Cohn and minimizing a globalist-nationalist split. That’s why President Trump said, “He may be a globalist, but I still like him. He’s seriously globalist, there’s no question, but you know what, in his own way he’s also a nationalist because he loves our country.”

And why Mulvaney wrote that, "I never expected that the coworker I would work closest, and best, with at the White House would be a "globalist." Gary Cohn is one of the smartest people I've ever worked with. Having the chance to collaborate with him will remain one of the highlights of my career in public service."

Can’t you just spot the “anti-Semitic dogwhistles”?

There are some in the alt-right who use “globalist” as an anti-Semitic slur, just as there were those on the left who used neo-conservative as an anti-Semitic slur. But that’s not what those terms mean.

When Stephen Miller, a Jewish Trump adviser, told CNN’s Jim Acosta, a Cuban-American, that he was suffering from a “cosmopolitan bias,” Politico accused Miller of using an “anti-Semitic dog whistle.” While “cosmopolitan” was an anti-Semitic euphemism in the USSR, Miller isn’t a Russian Communist, he’s a Jewish conservative.

But a congressional Democrat recently did use an anti-Semitic dogwhistle.

Rep. Danny Davis defended his ties to Farrakhan, the anti-Semitic leader of the Nation of Islam, by arguing, “The world is so much bigger than Farrakhan and the Jewish question and his position on that.”

About the only people who think there’s a “Jewish question” these days are anti-Semites. When Hitler and Marx weighed in on the Jewish question, it was to denounce the Jews. Unlike “globalist,” when the term is used by the alt-right today, (shortened to JQ), its meaning is unambiguously hostile.

But the national media chose to ignore Rep. Davis’ remarks. It embargoed the story, just as it embargoed the recent release of a photo of Obama and Farrakhan and the controversy over Women’s March leaders’ ties to Farrakhan. And Farrakhan, who once praised Hitler, has been venting a stream of anti-Semitic invective at the “Satanic” Jews because he knows that the national media won’t touch him.

The controversy over Obama, Davis, Keith Ellison, Linda Sarsour and Tamika Mallory has played out in the Jewish and conservative media. But no one in the mainstream media is willing to ask why Obama, the No. 2 man at the DNC, the Congressional Black Caucus and the next generation of intersectional feminist leaders are comfortable hanging out with a racist who suggested that Jews use pot to make black men gay. But the media will only discuss anti-Semitism is when it serves its political agenda.

ThinkProgress had the chutzpah to accuse President Trump of using an “anti-Semitic dogwhistle” when the lefty advocacy site had been forced to clean house over actual anti-Semitic dog whistles. The uproar over the use of “Israel firsters” by the site led its editor-in-chief to denounce the “terrible, anti-Semitic language”. But Salon, which also denounced Trump’s “globalist” remark, had published pieces defending TP’s anti-Semitic language while smearing the lefty group’s Jewish critics. Some of the same culprits are now targeting Bari Weiss at the New York Times for her willingness to call out anti-Semitism on the left.

But while its personnel were using anti-Semitic dog whistles, TP accused Sarah Palin of using an “anti-Semitic term” when she defended herself against false accusations of being responsible for the Arizona shooting by accusing the media of a “blood libel”. The accusation that Palin was being anti-Semitic made as much sense as Politico suggesting that Stephen Miller was using Soviet anti-Semitic slurs against CNN.

But the left is happy to invent fake anti-Semitism while refusing to address its own real anti-Semitism.

It will pretend that Mulvaney, Trump and Miller are using anti-Semitic language, but it won’t speak up when a member of the Congressional Black Caucus talks about a Hitler-lover and the “Jewish question”.

The left doesn’t just use anti-Semitism as a political weapon while refusing to renounce it. It will even deploy accusations of anti-Semitism as a political weapon in support of anti-Semites like George Soros.

The same media outlets that won’t talk about the genocidal threats by Iran’s regime and by its terror proxies in Gaza, have been accusing the critics of Soros, a billionaire lefty donor, of anti-Semitism. Soros, a former Nazi collaborator, had called his wartime activities “the most exciting time of my life.”

Soros described growing up in a "Jewish, anti-Semitic home" with a mother whom he called, a “typical Jewish anti-Semite” who hated his first wife because she was “too Jewish.”

After he compared Israeli Jews to Nazis at an event honoring a Holocaust survivor, Elie Wiesel had declared, “I heard what happened. If I’d been there—and you can quote me—I would have walked out.” That same year, Soros had blamed the Jewish State for a “resurgence of anti-Semitism in Europe”.

And Soros’ J Street, an anti-Israel group, is still mulling whether to stop endorsing Rep. Danny Davis. That’s their version of the Jewish Question. How much anti-Semitism by a progressive ally is too much?

The left treats anti-Semitism as another identity politics counter to be tossed in whenever convenient. It wants to be racist while accusing Republicans of racism. It wants to assault women while accusing Republicans of sexism. And it wants to be anti-Semitic while accusing Republicans of anti-Semitism.

Even while it appropriates anti-Semitism, treating it like another microaggression, triggered by terms like “globalist”, “cosmopolitan” or “blood libel” that have some anti-Semitic associations, but not in the context where they are presently being used, the left ignores what anti-Semitism actually is.

Anti-Semitism is not just another of the many intersectional expressions of bigotry as the left sees it. That misguided view of anti-Semitism makes it too easy to dismiss it as part of a bundle of attitudes that progressives don’t share. Emphasizing “globalist” and “cosmopolitan” appropriates anti-Semitism and reduces it to the worldview of people who don’t think about the planet the way that progressives do.

But anti-Semitism is ubiquitous. It’s not just a general phenomenon, but a specific one. It can pop up in any political worldview. It’s a black hole that curves ideologies and religions around its event horizon.

Appropriating anti-Semitism as a partisan political weapon lends cover to internal anti-Semitism within a political movement by externalizing it. The media can spot anti-Semitism in a random Trump quip, but not in the affinity of a former president, the second-in-command at the DNC and numerous members of Congress for Louis Farrakhan, a racist who praised Hitler and accuses Jews of running the country.

When Islamic terrorists kill Jews, when campus BDS thugs intimidate Jewish students, when their own party pals around with an anti-Semitic racist, they’re nowhere to be found. The left traffics in classic anti-Semitic stereotypes, supports rabid bigots and aids anti-Semitic regimes, but the moment they hear a whistle from the other side of the fence, they come barking as loudly as they can.

It’s bad enough that the left aids anti-Semitism from Berkeley to Tehran. It’s even worse when it appropriates anti-Semitism as a political weapon even while it remains an anti-Semitic movement.



Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

Click here to subscribe to my articles. And click here to support my work with a donation.

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Saturday, March 10, 2018

We're From the International Community and We're Here to Help

“I've always felt the nine most terrifying words in the English language are: I'm from the Government, and I'm here to help,” Ronald Reagan famously said. But the most terrifying words in every other language are, “We’re from the international community and we’re here to help.”

In Haitian Creole that would be, "Nou soti nan kominote entènasyonal la e nou isit la pou ede."

When an earthquake hit Haiti in ’10, everyone who was anyone in the international community quickly showed up. Bill Clinton had been appointed as the UN Special Envoy for Haiti a year earlier where he had touted the “unique opportunities for public and private investment” in Haiti. The earthquake opened up those opportunities to Clinton Foundation donors.

A year later, Bill Clinton was touting a $45 million new hotel owned by an Irish cell phone tycoon who was a close pal as the only thing a country with a million homeless needed. A CNN puff piece claimed that the hotel would house “aid workers, potential investors and other visitors”. Like Anderson Cooper, who needs someplace to take a hot shower after standing waist deep in water for 5 minutes on camera.

Haiti was a gold mine for the Clintons. Literally. Hillary’s brother was added to the board of a small company that got a gold mining permit at half the standard rates with a 25 year renewal option. Tony, Hillary’s brother, is a college dropout who had worked as a repo man and a prison guard.

The Clintons not only turned a disaster into a slush fund, but even got Hillary’s idiot brother a gig.

But inflicting the Clintons on Haiti wasn’t the worst thing that the United Nations did to the impoverished island. The worst thing that the UN can do to any country is send in the blue helmets.

Before the UN peacekeeping mission arrived, Haiti was a disaster. After it left, it was a disaster with cholera. The UN peacekeepers brought the disease with them and spread it around, killing 10,000 people and infecting at least 800,000 others. None of them could get into a Clinton luxury hotel.

Before the UN showed up, Haiti had 99,000 problems, but cholera wasn’t one of them. Then UN peacekeepers spread their multinational fecal matter into the Artibonite River. Soon the UN was trying to raise $400 million to clean up the national disaster that it created on top of an existing national disaster. It asked its staff for money and those donations added up to $6K or a week in the Presidential Suite of the Royal Oasis, Haiti’s first 5-star hotel, with financing from the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund.

But say what you will about the Clintons, unlike the UN, they’ve never given anyone cholera. (That we know of.) So far the UN has only come up with a few million. And everyone is demanding that the United States pay for the cholera that the United Nations spread even though we are already a cholera importer, bringing in top grade cholera from Latin American outbreaks to New York, Kansas and Virginia.

But that’s globalization for you. In a flattening world, Nepalese peacekeepers bring an exotic strain of cholera to Haiti. Refugees from Haiti bring it to America. Hillary Clinton’s brother tries to get in on a gold mine. And a horse breeder in Kentucky and a plumber in Michigan have to pay for the UN’s cholera.

But it would be a slow day at the United Nations if all it did was start a cholera epidemic that infected hundreds of thousands of people, lie about it for years, then pretend to take responsibility, refuse to actually pay for it, and then try to blame the whole thing on Trump who had been hosting Season 10 of The Apprentice back then. Unlike the UN, The Apprentice never infected 800,000 people with cholera.

Since it was the UN, it also had to sexually abuse children to give Haiti the full multilateral experience.

"One boy was gang raped in 2011 by peacekeepers who disgustingly filmed it on a cell phone. What do we say to these kids?" UN Ambassador Nikki Haley asked.

Those were the Uruguayans. The Sri Lankans had their own child sex ring of some 134 peacekeepers paying children 75 cents to abuse them and the Nepalese gave most of the country cholera.

That’s the international community for you. If it doesn’t get you one way, it’ll get you another way.

It’s hard not to look at that and conclude that the United Nations is its own war crime and that the best possible punishment is to put everyone involved on trial in one of the UN’s patented multi-generational war crimes tribunals that only end when everyone dies of old age. After 11 years, the Cambodia tribunal managed three convictions. Two others died of old age. That’s how the UN coddles those monsters it wants to punish. Haiti is an example of how it treats those victims it claims to want to help.

The UN might be more effective the other way around. Just imagine if North Korea’s Kim Jong Un had to worry about being “helped” and “protected” by sex-crazed and cholera-infected UN peacekeepers.

But it wasn’t just the Clintons and the United Nations living it up in Haiti.

The latest scandal has hit Oxfam. The leftist alliance claims to want to fight poverty, but it spends more time denouncing the rich. Its global inequality report is a staple of leftist talking points. Its Even It Up campaign is a blatant call for wealth redistribution. The anti-Israel group’s spat with actress Scarlett Johansson over her endorsement of Israeli products led to, what its boss called, a “PR disaster”.

But Oxfam had no idea what a real PR disaster was until the lefty charity’s own Haiti scandal hit.

Oxfam’s Haiti director was using the villa rented by the charity to host prostitutes. Senior Oxfam aid workers had exploited women and possibly even children. Oxfam had covered up the scandal in ’11 and tried sweeping it under the rug. And now it’s offering awkwardly unconvincing apologies.

While the Haitians suffered, Oxfam aid workers lived it up in a style worthy of Bill Clinton and the UN. “These girls wearing Oxfam T-shirts, running around half-naked, it was like a full-on Caligula orgy. It was unbelievable. It was crazy,” a London Times source stated.

Even it up indeed.

An Oxfam spokesfiend explained that the cops hadn’t been called because it was “extremely unlikely that reporting these incidents to the police would lead to any action being taken.” Fear that the police will do nothing is generally why organizations don’t report crimes committed by their members to the authorities. That and a deep concern that their donors will stop subsidizing their child rape villas.

"I don’t think it was in anyone’s best interest to be describing the details of the behaviour in a way that was actually going to draw extreme attention to it,” Oxfam’s boss said.

It certainly wasn’t in Oxfam’s interest, but it might have been in the interest of the Haitians it was claiming to help. The interest of those same people for whom Bill Clinton raised all that money, whom the UN sent in peacekeepers to protect and on whose behalf Oxfam had fundraised. But it was never really about the Haitians. It was about the gold mines, child sex rings and villa orgies. It was about the Clinton Foundation, the UN budget and all the money to be made from promising to save the world.

“We’re from the international community and we’re here to help.”

The lefty politicians and professional activists who rushed to Haiti were as enthusiastic about helping the Haitians as the Congressional Black Caucus is about lowering black unemployment. The left isn’t a charity. When it shows up to help, there are going to be luxury hotels, villas and sex rings involved.

And the people it claims to be helping will be even worse off than they were before.




Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

Click here to subscribe to my articles. And click here to support my work with a donation.

Thank you for reading.

Wednesday, March 07, 2018

Trump's Win is the Reichstag Fire of Internet Censorship

Trump’s election victory was the Reichstag fire of internet censorship. The fury and conspiracy theories that followed were not just about bringing down President Trump, but ending free speech online.

It’s no coincidence that the central conspiracy theory surrounding the 2016 election involves free speech or that the solution is internet censorship. The claim that Russian trolls and bots rigged the election has zero actual evidence behind it. But it’s a convenient tool for not only delegitimizing Trump, but the very idea of a free and open internet where anyone can say anything they choose.

Senator Ben Cardin, Rep. Jerry Nadler and other members of Congress compared the election influence conspiracy to Pearl Harbor. Rep. Jim Himes went even further, suggesting that it had eclipsed 9/11 by claiming that it, “is up there with Pearl Harbor in terms of its seriousness as a challenge to this country."

What they’re really saying is that Democrats losing an election is worse than the murder of 3,000 people. It’s why they will oppose a terror state travel ban until Islamic terrorists start voting Republican.

And what did this greatest attack since Pearl Harbor consist of? Speech. On the internet.

The central Russiagate conspiracy theory isn’t really about hacking: it’s about fake news sites and bots. The new Pearl Harbor comes from too many people saying the wrong things and the need to make them stop saying them. If they go on saying those things, it’s worse than the murder of 3,000 people.

If this was the new Pearl Harbor, does that mean we should be at war with Russia?

Democrats have little appetite for military conflict with anyone except Nevada ranchers. Trump has put more Russian fighters into the ground in one day of fighting than Obama did in eight years in office. When it comes to Moscow, the Democrats want to slap on some meaningless sanctions, before pushing the Reset Button once they get into the White House. It’s not Russia they want to crack down on, it’s us.

The accusations of treason and the cries of wartime emergency are pretexts for a domestic crackdown.

The election Reichstag fire manufactured a crisis that had to be urgently addressed. Alarmist wartime rhetoric justified civil rights violations from eavesdropping on Trump officials to internet censorship. The “collusion” effort to impeach Trump and imprison his associates through everything from eavesdropping to the Mueller investigation has been the loudest part of the campaign. Internet censorship has been the shadow campaign. Its implications aren’t as obvious, but extend far beyond this election.

The bulk of the remedies (beyond going back to paper ballots which are a lot easier for local lefty activists to stuff) involve internet censorship. The campaign began with alarmists warnings about Fake News. President Trump successfully seized the phrase and turned it against CNN, but the program to purge conservative material from Facebook, Google, and other services and sites is still going strong.

Before the election, Obama had urged, "We are going to have to rebuild within this wild-wild-west-of-information flow some sort of curating function.” The talking point that the internet has become a dangerously unregulated environment is at the heart of the internet censorship campaign. The First Amendment prevented direct government action, so the regulation had to take another form.

The “curating” was managed by pressuring Facebook, Google and others to embed a middle layer of lefty non-profits, from media fact checkers to activist groups like the Southern Poverty Law Center, to determine what belonged and who didn’t belong on their services. The middle curation layer would promote “trustworthiness” and curtail “divisiveness”: Orwellian euphemisms for political censorship.

This middle layer allowed Google and Facebook to outsource censorship by curation to “trustworthy” organizations. Or at least those organizations considered trustworthy by the left. The same media echo chamber which had manufactured the speech crisis had put itself in charge of imposing the solution.

And the solution was restoring a media monopoly by turning the internet into a gated community.

Putting the left in charge of determining the “trustworthiness” of content is political censorship. And Google and Facebook’s control over huge swathes of the internet meant that the censors would gain control over the eyeballs of more people than any single government could possibly manage.

Without the banner of “Fake News”, the censorship is harder to track. Some of it gets reported. And much of the rest is anecdotal. It’s the shadowbannings, demonetizations and suspensions that have become part of life for vocal conservatives as part of the political repression after the 2016 election.

Some of the results were obvious. Others were algorithmic. Visits, hits, views and retweets dropped. Some users and sites were banned. Others vanished into the shadowban twilight. The many grades of censorship ranged from full bans to demonitzation. But all shared a common leftist political agenda.

After a year, the left has made significant inroads in banning and restricting conservatives. Some battles were temporarily won. Facebook is pulling back from its reliance on the left’s “fact check” sites, Google’s knowledge panels no longer roll Snopes smears into search results for conservative sites and Guidestar’s defacing of the non-profit listings for conservative sites with Southern Poverty Law Center ratings was also rolled back. But the left is still winning the censorship war as the internet is reshaped away from an open marketplace of ideas to a “trustworthy” source of ideas “curated” by non-profit lefty partners.

Political censorship, no matter how it’s disguised, might be hard to justify if there weren’t a “serious threat to our democracy” or if we weren’t facing the “worst attack on America” since Pearl Harbor.

In wartime only selfish people would insist on unrestricted freedom of speech on the internet.

In December, the activist left went to war for what it called, “Net Neutrality”. The war was fought with fake comments, death threats and calls to action by some of the biggest monopolies on the internet.

If you believed them, freedom on the internet was about to be wiped out by cable companies.

There are a handful of big companies that provide cable or satellite internet access in the United States. But there’s nothing like Google, which controls 88% of search and 42% of the digital ad market, or Facebook, which has a comparable grip on social media. Between them they control 70% of the digital ad market. No cable company enjoys an internet monopoly remotely comparable to that of Google.

Should we be more worried about a cable company with 20 million subscribers or online monopolies which act as the gatekeepers to the internet, shaping how we experience it for their own reasons?

The new internet censorship has emerged as a partnership between the media, allied non-profit groups and the huge gatekeeper monopolies and it bypasses conventional government censorship. And yet its origins lie with the Reichstag fire conspiracy deployed by Barack Obama and his intended successor.

The new censorship may not be implemented by government, but it originated with government. It is the action of the private arm of a public-private leftist coalition monopolizing political power. The same coalition that unleashed a new Watergate by eavesdropping on Trump officials is also changing what you see on Facebook. And both the public and private arms are doing it under the same pretext.

The accusations of treason and calls to limit freedom of speech as an act of social responsibility for the public good are familiar totalitarian responses to wartime conditions. The left manufactured a war. And it imposed wartime restrictions through public organizations like the FBI and private ones like Facebook.

The private side of the campaign is based on the talking point that the big monopolies have a social responsibility to emphasize trustworthy information and to censor divisive misinformation.

The pressure came first from the media and activist groups. Now it’s spreading to politicized companies like Unilever whose chief marketing officer issued an ultimatum warning sites that if they don’t clean up “divisive” content and replace it with a “positive contribution to society”, they will lose Unilever’s ads.

Euphemisms like “trustworthy” or “divisive” are markers for the left and the right. A Washington Post editorial or CNN tweet, no matter how abrasive, will never be seen as divisive. Lefty organizations that advocate for illegal aliens are making a “positive contribution” and conservatives ones that oppose them are “divisive”. The ability to determine what is “positive” or “divisive”, will not only drive viewers and money to left-wing sites while destroying conservative sites, but create red lines for conservative sites.

Those conservative sites that remain within the red lines on gun control, illegal aliens or Islamic terrorism can go on benefiting from search and social media traffic, those that don’t will be purged.

Dividing Americans by escalating the political conflict also escalates the crisis that justifies the censorship. The NFL protests, Antifa violence, shootings and riots all maintain the sense of urgency. As society explodes, the need to limit the “divisive” content increases. Once again, the left creates a crisis and then imposes restrictions on its political opponents to resolve the crisis that it created.

The left exploited Trump’s victory to manufacture a sense of crisis. The anger and fear it unleashed stampeded liberals into agitating (or at least remaining silent) on serious abuses of power from deploying national security organizations against political opponents to silencing them on the internet. By depicting them as representing an unacceptable domestic extremism and traitors in league with a foreign enemy, it justified any possible domestic abuse of authority.

Anyone who disagreed was in league with either the Nazis or the Russians. In a great historical irony, the left had deployed the Reichstag fire strategy against its opponents while accusing them of being Nazis.

There is a plot against America. It’s just not the one that the plotters keep using as their plot’s pretext.

It’s a plot against our election, not by the Russians, but by the left. It’s a plot against freedom of speech, not by the Russians, but by the left. The plotters took a Russian propaganda and influence operation and turned it into a pretext for the greatest assault on democracy and freedom in American history.

The Russians created some Facebook posts. The left is using that to end free speech on the internet.

If the left succeeds in reversing the outcome of the previous election, it will be a catastrophe for our age. If however it succeeds in censoring the internet, the catastrophe may last for generations.




Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

Click here to subscribe to my articles. And click here to support my work with a donation.

Thank you for reading.

Monday, March 05, 2018

The Bernie Sanders Dynasty

Forget the Clintons and the Bushes, there’s a new political dynasty: the Sanderses.

Bernie may have been born a few months before Pearl Harbor, but the socialist proponent of the estate tax is trying to leave an untaxable inheritance to his next of kin. The inheritance of political power.

It never fails. Give a socialist power, and he becomes a monarchist and founds his own dynasty.

Levi Sanders, Bernie's son, is running for Congress in New Hampshire on his dad's old inherited platform of free health care and free college. While Bernie claims to be an independent, Levi has been consulting with him about his run.

Levi doesn't actually live in the district, but Hillary Clinton didn't really live in New York until she decided to run for the Senate. What matters is that like Hillary, the Sanders scion has the right last name.

And Bernie’s stepdaughter is running for his old job as mayor of Burlington.

Carina Driscoll, the daughter of Bernie’s wife, Jane Sanders, will run as an independent. It’s an ironic designation considering that running for your stepdad’s old job is about as independent as Jeb Bush and Chelsea Clinton. Her office is two doors down from her mom’s Sanders Institute operation.

Our Revolution, Bernie’s dark money fake social welfare organization, has endorsed her and sent out a fundraising email for her. People for Bernie also endorsed Carina. Her brother, who runs the Sanders Institute, used his Twitter account to promote her campaign. She’s even reusing her stepdad’s slogan.

Bernie’s stepdaughter declares, “It is time to bring the people back to the table.” As long as they’re part of the Sanders clan.

Carina promises to “foster the best schools” and cites her experience running “the Vermont Woodworking School”. That’s bad news for Burlington schools just as it was for Burlington College.

Burlington College was raided by the Sanders clan. Jane Sanders, Bernie’s wife, is under FBI investigation for allegedly lying about the school’s finances on a bank loan application. The debt broke the college, which had to shut down under the crushing burden of the loan, while Jane walked away with $200K.

Some call it “federal loan fraud”, but, socialists call it wealth redistribution. Bernie and Jane have hired Rep. “Cold Cash” Jefferson’s lawyer while hoping he keeps her from following Cold Cash to a cold cell.

Carina did pretty well during her mother’s mismanagement of Burlington College. The Vermont Woodworking School got $500K from Burlington College. It was among the college’s most expensive programs with a budget over 10% that of Burlington. That’s some rather pricey woodworking.

Why did a struggling college need to spend all that money on a woodworking school?

“This was a sweetheart deal for Carina Driscoll, Jane Sanders’ daughter,” Carol Moore, Burlington's final president, said. She accused Carina's school of “gouging the college.”

Will the wonders of crony socialism never cease?

Bernie had paid his wife, $80,000 for “consulting and ad placement” in his congressional campaign. What’s her expertise in ad placement? Jane was a community organizer with a degree in social work who married Bernie and honeymooned with him in the USSR.

The degree was from Goddard College, a “holistic” alternative school where students design their own curriculum. Sixteen years later, Sanders was its new provost. What qualified her for the job? The Burlington Free Press stated that she had, "progressive credentials . . . above question."

Carina’s progressive credentials are also above question. That’s why she got $65,000 from the campaign.

Mother and daughter had teamed up for a series of ad buying firms, including, Sanders & Driscoll, Leadership Strategies, which listed two of Jane’s kids, and handled ads for her husband’s campaign.

These days, Jane Sanders has branched out into founding the Sanders Institute whose mission is to “revitalize democracy by actively engaging individuals.”

As long as those individuals are members of the Sanders family.

The executive director of the Sanders Institute is Dave Driscoll, Carina’s brother, and Jane’s son. Before that, Dave had been working at Burton Snowboards.

When Mayor Bill de Blasio, the progressive icon also under FBI investigation, whose donors have pleaded guilty to trying to bribe him, was sworn in by Bernie, observers noted that the socialist senator was wearing a $689 down jacket. That’s a pricey piece of gear for the leftist who once ranted that, “You don't necessarily need a choice of 23 underarm spray deodorants or of 18 different pairs of sneakers when children are hungry in this country.” But Bernie needs a $689 jacket and a $600K summer home.

And the jacket was a Burton parka. Burton’s CEO sent its employees to the anti-Trump “Women’s March” and two dozen of them volunteered for Bernie’s campaign. Burton’s bosses are among Vermont’s most prominent political donors. And the beneficiaries include Bernie.

During the 2016 race, $82 million dollars poured through Old Towne Media, a mysterious company run by two of Jane’s old pals, that got most of its business from Bernie. And the Bernie campaign put no caps on commissions. So the sky was the limit. The more Bernie campaigned, the more money they made.

Throughout all this, Bernie avoided disclosing his personal finances by filing for two extensions and then refusing to actually make the information public. Since then he’s come into a $600K summer home.

"Wall Street and the billionaire class has rigged the rules to redistribute wealth and income to the wealthiest and most powerful people," Bernie's site still declares.

Bernie knows all about rigging the rules. And now the Sanders dynasty can inherit his power.

The old leftist critique is that the wealthy hoard money, power and privilege, and then pass it on their kids. The most vocal critic of wealth is the newly minted socialist 1 percenter whose stepdaughter seeks to inherit his old job and whose son wants to run for Congress. And the Bernie machine has the connections to make it all happen while demanding a higher death tax on the 1 percent.

But don’t blame Bernie. He’s doing what all the lefties do.

When Bill Clinton first ran, Dem voters thought they were voting for a fresh new voice who would challenge establishment politics, not create a political dynasty. It took a generation to get rid of them. By then they had stolen everything from the White House furniture to the nation’s uranium. And the Clintons are pikers compared to the Kennedys who 65 years later inflicted Rep. Joe Kennedy III on us.

At this rate, it’ll outlast some English royal dynasties.

And a generation from now, descendants of the Sanders clan and stepclan will be clogging up public offices and wetting their beaks across Vermont. That’s how the Bernie “Revolution” will end.

The left claims that it’s on the right side of history. But it never actually goes anywhere. Instead it plays out the doomed cycle of Animal Farm’s bitterly satirical rendering of Soviet history. And when all is said and done, no one can tell the socialist pigs from the crony capitalist pigs. Just ask the Sanders porkers.

There’s an old Soviet anecdote about Brezhnev, the Soviet boss, showing off his wealth to his family.

“But Lyonya," his concerned mother asked, "what will you do if the Communists return to power?”

Bernie Sanders is now a 1 percenter with three homes and a political dynasty. His campaign plane was a mostly empty 767 serving lobster sliders, chocolate ganache, fine cheeses and white wine.

But what will he do if the socialists come to power?




Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

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Thank you for reading.

Friday, March 02, 2018

Guns Don't Kill People, Ideas Do

“The copycat phenomenon is real,” Andre Simons, of the FBI's Behavioral Analysis Unit. One group of researchers found that up to 20 or 30 percent of attacks can be influenced by previous attacks.

During Omar Mateen's rampage at the Pulse nightclub, the Muslim terrorist searched for news coverage of the ongoing attack. He wanted to see what the media was making of his massacre.

Shootings that are widely covered by the media produce a cluster effect. After each attack, the risk of copycat attacks goes up for 13 days. If the media covers the attack, the copycat killers will come.

On Dec 3rd, 2012, Naeem Davis, a homeless Muslim refugee from Sierra Leone, shoved a middle-aged Korean man in front of an oncoming Q subway train in Times Square. A photographer snapped a shot of him waiting to die that appeared on the cover of the New York Post and then went around the world.

And that was that... except it wasn't.

On December 28, there was another shoving murder. After the round of murders, suicides and accidental deaths, seven people  had died under trains in 2013; a number that does not include the deaths previously mentioned. In Feb 2013, two people committed suicide by jumping in front of trains. Another was killed in a possible accident. One lost a leg. Two others were seriously injured. And then there was another suicide.

These numbers are not normal, but they are predictable. And that photograph and its consequences have dark implications for school shootings, mass shootings in general and human nature.

Around the same time that the American Revolution was getting underway, the German writer Goethe wrote a book that would become the Catcher in the Rye and Twilight of its day. "The Sorrows of Young Werther" had the dubious honor of being disowned by its author, starting a fashion trend and another deadlier trend.

Werther Fever spread around the world. Readers wrote parodies of the book or imagined different endings for the characters. Some wrote themselves into the story or wrote poems about the story. There were unauthorized sequels, people dressing up like the characters and all the usual things that we have now come to take for granted, but that were still somewhat new and surprising then.

And some committed suicide like Werther. The Werther Effect was born and it had a sneaky way of resurfacing whenever and wherever the book became popular again.

Some 200 years later, German television debuted "Death of a Student", a six-part series about Claus Wagner, a high school student who commits suicide by jumping under a train. Each episode began with Claus jumping under the train. The series was supposed to teach teenagers that suicide was wrong, but it had the opposite effect.

The real message of "Death of a Student" was the same message as that of "The Sorrows of Young Werther", if you kill yourself, lots of people will pay attention to you.  And suddenly the number of teenage boys killing themselves by jumping under a train increased by 175%. Having failed to prevent enough suicides, the show aired a second time. This time fewer people were watching and the suicide rate for teenage boys only went up 115%. 

A few years later in neighboring Vienna, suicides went up when they were featured on the front page rand fell 75% when they were pushed to the back page, run sans photos and without mention of the word, "Suicide." Young Werther, in his blue-tailed coat and yellow vest, stopped chasing the trains of the Vienna underground.

The suicide cluster is a well-known phenomenon, especially among teenagers; it is why the media avoids coverage of teenage suicides... with one exception. A teenager who hangs himself in his garage, jumps under a train or turns on the gas will generally not make the front page or even the back page. But if he takes a gun into a school, opens fire and then commits suicide,  Young Werther will be front page news for days, weeks or even months.

"No man is an island entire of itself," John Donne wrote, "every man is a piece of the continent." And some pieces of the continent are more easily invaded than others.

Suicides spike after front page coverage of a suicide. After Marilyn Monroe's death, 197 more people killed themselves than the statistical norm. Suicides rise even after fictional suicides on soap operas. And murders are also influenced by the coverage of real and fictional murders. The rise in the number of shootings after a heavily publicized shooting isn't a mysterious conspiracy, it's Werthers being Werther or Lanza or Holmes.

People are not mere machines who repeat back what they are given, but nor are ideas empty signals shouted into a void. Society is built on such signals. As is civilization. And it is foolish to pretend that the streams of communications that surround and connect those islands do not also influence the direction in which they drift. In a society where fame is the object, media coverage acts as both reward and punishment. And like any other training method, it produces its results.

Stick a photo of a man about to be hit by a train on the cover of a citywide newspaper, and more people will be pushed under trains and jump under trains. Spend weeks making a mass shooter famous and others will decide that resolving their problems with a shooting spree makes sense. Bad ideas are like bad signals, even if disapproved of, they are imitated if they are broadcast loudly enough. And the modern media is a deafeningly loud broadcast mechanism with many hypocritical agendas.

That does not mean that we ought to push the 1st Amendment under the train, the way that the media has been trying to do to the 2nd Amendment, but it does call for soul-searching and responsibility not by the people who make guns or defend the right to carry them, as the media insists, but by the people who make school shootings and subway suicides. The people who insist that everyone must search their souls, but them.

Stephen King, who recently jumped into the fray with his own gun control screed, was credited with inspiring one of the first clusters of school shootings in the United States. To his credit, King has wrestled with the question, withdrawing "Rage" from sale and conceding that it had an incendiary effect on troubled minds. To his discredit, King has used that action to argue that gun owners, manufacturers and civil rights groups should agree to a ban on the mythical assault rifle.

Ideas are more powerful than weapons. Weapons can kill a man, but ideas can cause a man to kill. Nevertheless the United States is a country built on the premise that ideas and weapons should be available to all. We are a country with high capacity magazines of both kinds. That experiment in human liberty is a dangerous one, and even though some Americans get on the wrong track, it is a profoundly worthy experiment because it allows us to choose who we are.

A totalitarian society cannot be moral. It can only be immoral. The few moral people in it retain their morality only by defying authority. In such a society, the Young Werther isn't a screwup, he's a saint. In our society, morality is a choice. Even as we drift into a totalitarian consensus that exchanges choice for obedience, individual opinions for mass media and civilian weapons for a police state, the power of choice still allows us to choose the right track or the wrong track.

The American can still choose to push a man in front of a train, kill a class full of children or vote to turn over his freedom and that of his friends, neighbors and countrymen to the state. Those are all choices that come up on the wrong track. The wrong track is the mass track. It is the track of letting the signals make the choices and of a willingness to kill and die just to appear for a moment as a ghost in the media's fame machine.

Choice requires a moral culture. It requires a weight of decency to overcome the darker impulses that lead men to take the wrong track. It requires us to think not only of our destination, but how we get there. It demands that we see ourselves not as the train running over a fragile body or as the passengers clumping together for safety while turning over the movement of the train to the driver, but as the drivers of our own train.

A moral society is based on the awareness of choice. Not the empty Wertheresque drama of it, but the knowledge that our choices define our lives and those of our neighbors. They call on us to be good people because the goodness of our society does not come from the law or the state, but from ourselves.

When the American society was hijacked from a consensus of the people and transformed into a top-down programming mechanism, its morality also became a top-down operation, rather than a bottom-up faith, and as the media management has decayed, its mixed signals and the ugly madness that it often broadcasts for its own profit and entertainment have become the ugly madness and mixed signals that lead some of its viewers and listeners to seek fame and power at any cost.