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Ocasio-Cortez on Women’s March anti-semitism: We do need to worry about anti-semitism — from the Trump administration

Westlake Legal Group a-4 Ocasio-Cortez on Women’s March anti-semitism: We do need to worry about anti-semitism — from the Trump administration Women's March white house Trump The Blog Tamika Mallory Linda Sarsour anti-semitism Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez administration

Via Jerry Dunleavy, here’s the transcript of what she says in the clip below, which makes the rhetorical sleight of hand clearer. I can’t tell if she’s deliberately deflecting on behalf of the Farrakhan apologists at the top of the Women’s March or if she’s having some sort of leftist Pavlovian response in which someone mentions bigotry to her and she immediately begins salivating about Trump.

Westlake Legal Group a-5 Ocasio-Cortez on Women’s March anti-semitism: We do need to worry about anti-semitism — from the Trump administration Women's March white house Trump The Blog Tamika Mallory Linda Sarsour anti-semitism Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez administration

A key part of what makes AOC such a sensation on the left, I think, is that there’s no lip service paid in her daily shtick to canards like “this country needs two vibrant well-functioning parties.” She might concede that the new Trumpy Republicanism is worse than Reagan Republicanism but ultimately Ocasio-Cortez seems to believe that the right is deplorable, root and branch. When that’s your worldview, of course a question about left-wing anti-semitism will be redirected into an answer about right-wing anti-semitism. It’s almost beside the point to her, I assume, whether the leaders of the Women’s March are anti-semitic. The Women’s March is leftist in orientation; leftism is the solution to America’s problems; by advancing leftism the March is thus working towards a future in which literally everything will be better. So, in a way, Tamika Mallory is kinda sorta working to end anti-semitism even as she’s muttering on Twitter about how her leader has “the same enemies as Jesus.”

If you’re wondering, “So at what point would AOC begin to suspect that a woke cause maybe isn’t as woke as it seems given some of the beliefs of its founders?”, good question. We’ll see over time. The short answer for now is “A point pretty far beyond where the DNC is willing to draw the line.”

Elsewhere, reporter Noga Tarnopolsky noticed that another co-founder of the March, Linda Sarsour, decided to address the controversy yesterday on Facebook — by highlighting a piece accusing Jews of “race and class bias” for being critical of Farrakhan sympathizers, of course:

Westlake Legal Group s-2 Ocasio-Cortez on Women’s March anti-semitism: We do need to worry about anti-semitism — from the Trump administration Women's March white house Trump The Blog Tamika Mallory Linda Sarsour anti-semitism Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez administration

Ocasio-Cortez hasn’t taken any “bold stances” yet on Israel and the Palestinians (I think?) but it’s unimaginable that someone so orthodox in all of her other left-wing opinions would break from progressives on an issue that highly charged. When she does, Pelosi’s going to have a major headache trying to solve the problem that bedeviled establishment Republicans during the tea-party era with populist heroes like Sarah Palin, namely, how to broadcast the party’s message nationally when the rival broadcast from populists seems to resonate much more with your own base. Dems in Congress have done an amazing job for many years ignoring their base’s hostility to Israel. That era is coming to an end.

The post Ocasio-Cortez on Women’s March anti-semitism: We do need to worry about anti-semitism — from the Trump administration appeared first on Hot Air.

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NFL championships open thread

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Ed: And so we come down to the final three games left in the 2018 NFL season. Jazz and I both managed to go 2-0 on Sunday, leaving me with a one-game lead at 6-2.  We both had to hold our breath through the Saints-Eagles game. That turned into a tough defensive match that sent the Cinderella team packing for home. The Patriots did what the Patriots usually do in the playoffs, of course, especially at home, although the Chargers never quit on the game. Today we get to watch two rematches between the leagues top four teams, and it should be a magnificent afternoon.

Jazz: Yes, last Sunday’s games were sadly predictable. The “sadly” part came mostly by way of the Patriots. I picked them in our pool because the odds were too overwhelming in their favor. But since Ed took them also I didn’t feel bad about rooting for the Chargers. I’d rather have a worse playoff record and see the Patriots go home, but it wasn’t meant to be. Either way, I went 2-0, bringing me to a 5-3 playoff total thus far, one behind Ed. I’ll need to scrape up one extra win today if I hope to go into the Superbowl with a clean slate.

Ed: The NFC opens up the day with their championship game in New Orleans (3:05 pm ET, Fox), as the Saints face the Rams. The Saints came out sluggish at home last week, but their defense came to the rescue against Nick Foles and the Eagles. They won’t be as fortunate against the high-powered Los Angeles offense, but the same can be said for the Rams, who nearly let the Cowboys back in the game last week in the second half, getting outscored 15-10. Dallas had the 22nd-ranked offense in 2018; the Saints were ranked eighth. After surviving the Eagles, the Saints will be revved up at home, plus they have more playoff experience than the Rams, especially at the QB position. Saints over Rams, 31-24.

Jazz: The Rams make me nervous any time I think of picking against them. I wasn’t that impressed at the beginning of the season, but they’ve really turned on the heat. Still, after an also dubious few moments early on, the Saints have been looking like the Super Bowl winners in waiting for quite a while now. I don’t think Los Angeles will go down easy, but particularly playing at home and not having to travel across the country, New Orleans will pull it out. I’ll take the Saints over the Rams in a high scoring battle 34-30.

Ed: The AFC championship (6:40 pm ET, CBS) is a rematch of one of the most exciting games of the year, except it will take place in Kansas City rather than Foxboro. The Patriots go on the road for their eighth straight AFC championship to meet the Chiefs, who barely lost to the Pats in Foxboro in week 6. Brady and Belichik have plenty of playoff experience and smarts, but they also have a less-than-stellar record on the road in championships (2-4), and a less-than-stellar road record this season (3-5). Brady is the GOAT and the Pats over the last 17 years can argue for the status of the greatest NFL dynasty ever, but KC is built to play against New England in this season. Home-field advantage and the confidence from that near-win in Week 6 will make the difference this time. Chiefs 33-28 over the Patriots.

Jazz:  All season long I’ve been waiting for the day when I can pick the Patriots to lose and go home for the year. Today is not that day, my friends. Even on the road, they have what it takes to pull out one more win against the formerly unbeatable Chiefs. The Patriots will lose, but it will be to the Saints. I’m taking New England over Kansas City 27-21.

The post NFL championships open thread appeared first on Hot Air.

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Batten the hatches. The No Deal Brexit is almost a reality

Westlake Legal Group may-tusk Batten the hatches. The No Deal Brexit is almost a reality Theresa May The Blog Prime Minister Parliament no deal European Union Brexit

If you follow the news (or comedy) from the BBC, the past two weeks have produced all manner of uproar and bitter controversy, leading up to two critical votes in the House of Commons. One was the failure of Prime Minister Theresa May’s Brexit deal, followed by the failure of the Labour Party to toss her out of office on a vote of no confidence. Now, at least for the time being, they are stuck with the same Prime Minister who is dead set on leaving the European Union, no deal in sight, and a rapidly approaching deadline (March 29) which will see them exit the EU and launch into uncharted territory.

The mood in the British press I mentioned above has seemed to change as the reality of the current situation sets in. A lengthy editorial from The Sun reflects that shift this week. (Worth noting that The Sun is a more right-leaning, pro-Brexit publication.)

IT is a monumental, historic and ­catastrophic defeat. Yet somehow Theresa May is still standing. If nothing else her resilience and determination are admirable and remarkable…

Even then, the scale of defeat looks insurmountable. And the EU is vanishingly unlikely to help: It has wanted a second referendum all along and now believes it’s coming.

Mrs. May’s dramatic Commons speech in favour of her Withdrawal Agreement was well crafted and delivered, a stark contrast to the gripes Jeremy Corbyn read falteringly from his script.

But The Sun could never have supported the deal as it stands.

The editors of The Sun go on to declare that the only good thing about May’s deal was that it would have allowed the government to keep their promise to the nation and finalize their departure, defeating the machinations of “a Remainer hardcore [seeking] to reverse our referendum verdict.”

They complain about the threat of May’s deal leaving the EU with a potentially limitless ability to handcuff Great Britain over the Irish backstop, constraining their ability to negotiate their own trade deals. Further, the deal would have led to the immediate collapse of the Conservative Party government since their minority relies on the Irish DUP to keep them in power and that coalition would have evaporated.

These are all valid complaints, but I’ll return to the same point I was making last year when this outcome first began to look inevitable. The hard, No Deal Brexit will almost certainly lead to some months of chaos and temporary inconvenience. There will likely be an economic downturn through the rest of 2019 as a result.

But the key word here is temporary. None of the underlying realities of the British and continental European economies or their traditional ideological bonds are changing one bit after March 29th. The Brits still have needs that can only be met through trade and the market deplores a vacuum. Similarly, Great Britain has goods and services which will remain in demand across the channel. There’s also the matter of defense. Britain’s military is among the strongest and most capable in Europe and her allies still have need of her.

What all this means is that trade, migration and defense deals will be reached after a period of haggling and posturing. Life will gradually return to normal. All of these countries somehow survived for centuries, if not millennia before the European Union came along. They will do so in the future as friends, much the same way that best friends slowly glide back into each other’s orbits after a particularly unpleasant argument.

Be of good cheer, Brits. You’re doing the right thing and the sun will indeed come up tomorrow. It just might be a bit cloudy through the spring.

The post Batten the hatches. The No Deal Brexit is almost a reality appeared first on Hot Air.

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Sunday morning talking heads

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Like everyone else, the Sunday shows are bored with, and depressed by, the endless shutdown standoff. So they turn instead today to the 2020 Democratic primary, with newly declared candidate Kirsten Gillibrand the star guest. She’ll sit down with “Face the Nation” and “State of the Union” to deny on the one hand that she’s the most reptilian contender in the field while on the other hand taking care to tell liberals exactly what they want to hear with every answer she gives. Expect her to be asked about her proto-Trumpian support for strong borders circa 2008, which evaporated instantly a year later when political expediency required it.

The other recently declared candidate in the field, Tulsi Gabbard, is also booked this morning. She’ll follow Gillibrand on “State of the Union” to explain her shift from ardent opponent of gay rights years ago to dogmatic progressive today, and maybe preview for us the warm welcome Bashar Assad could expect at the White House from the Gabbard administration.

There’s a soon-to-be candidate scheduled today too: That’d be Amy Klobuchar, who’s set for “Meet the Press.” Maybe she’ll make news with an announcement?

If none of that grabs you, Mark Warner, the top Democrat on the Senate Intel Committee, is also booked for “Meet the Press.” My sneaking suspicion is that Warner was scheduled for the show early Friday to discuss the details of the bombshell BuzzFeed story accusing Trump of suborning perjury before Congress by Michael Cohen. “Is this an impeachable offense?” Chuck Todd would have asked him. In light of … more recent developments, they’re apt to have a conversation instead about whether media sensationalism is hurting the search for truth in Russiagate. The full line-up is at the AP.

The post Sunday morning talking heads appeared first on Hot Air.

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Maybe Larry Hogan is thinking of a run at Trump after all

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Just to clarify the headline a bit, he’s not suggesting that he’ll “run train” on Trump, which would be something very different and, frankly, just awkward.

This story has been getting a lot of play in the past couple of weeks and it’s showing no signs of going away. Is Maryland Governor Larry Hogan weighing a primary challenge to Donald Trump in 2020? When the story first broke I wrote it off as “other people’s ideas” and not Hogans. There were plenty of reasons to believe that, starting with the fact that up until his recent inauguration for another term, you were hard pressed to find a case where he even mentioned Trump’s name.

Yesterday Politico dredged it up yet again and Allahpundit dug a bit deeper into the “interesting” aspects of the possibility. I agree with AP that Hogan is a rare sort of “oatmeal-ey” Republican who manages to stand out as one of the most popular governors in the country, despite being in a very blue state. (He’s pretty much tied with his equally mushy GOP colleague in Massachusettes.)

Now the Baltimore Sun has picked up the ball and run with it as well. They point out a few factors which just might indicate that there’s some actual flame under all this smoke. One Washington think-tank, NeverTrump honcho is really buttering Hogan up in an effort to get him to make the leap. And he’s eliciting a few comments from Hogan that make it sound like it could be more than just fantasy.

Jerry Taylor, the founder of the Niskanen Center in Washington, said in an interview with The Baltimore Sun that he’s been trying to persuade Hogan to run — and the governor hasn’t turned him down.

“The increasing interest on Governor Hogan’s part in what’s going on in Washington, D.C., is encouraging,” said Taylor, a former senior fellow at the libertarian Cato Institute. “It’s clear to me he’s been thinking about it more than in the past. But he hasn’t made any decision yet.”

A day after his second inauguration as governor, Hogan said he intended to finish his four-year term.

“That is certainly the plan at this point, but you never know what’s going to happen,” Hogan said Thursday.

So at this point, Hogan has gone from “I’m going to finish my four-year term” to… “that’s certainly the plan at this point, but you never know.” Does this mean that he’s seriously thinking about it? It would be the easiest thing in the world for Governor Hogan to answer any reporter’s question by saying that he’s flattered people would consider him but he’s happy where he is and will not be running.

Another factor to consider is that Hogan isn’t just starting his second term. He’s starting his last term, at least for the immediate future. He’s term-limited and will be out of office after the 2022 elections. That might prompt us to think he’s considering his long term future. But let’s also remember that Hogan is already 62 and just made his way past a major health scare. He seems in good shape now, but is he really ready for the rigors of a presidential bid and possibly four to eight years on the hot seat in the Oval Office?

Frankly, I’m still not seeing it. Hogan is a pragmatist and he surely realizes, as Allahpundit pointed out last night, he has zero chance of beating Trump in a primary. Plus, if he ditched Maryland to spend all of his time campaigning for the presidency (after saying he would finish his term) he’d sacrifice much of the goodwill he’s built up with his constituents. If anything, he’s more likely be considering a 2024 run no matter who wins next year.

Here’s an alternate theory. Hogan is a human being like the rest of us and I’m sure it’s a boost to his ego and quite flattering to see his name being bandied about as a POTUS contender. Perhaps, just for the time being, he’s content to let the rumormongers feed stories about him to the political press and have reporters trailing after him awaiting his next comment. I don’t say that as an insult. There’s nothing wrong with it at all. But it doesn’t mean that he’s going to be forming an exploratory committee any time soon.

The post Maybe Larry Hogan is thinking of a run at Trump after all appeared first on Hot Air.

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Trump thanks Mueller for slapping back at Buzzfeed story

Westlake Legal Group 002648ac-2f48-4387-9370-ee0e5a8b796d Trump thanks Mueller for slapping back at Buzzfeed story The Blog Russia Robert Mueller President Trump Office of Special Counsel

President Trump left the White House on Saturday morning to travel to Dover Air Force Base to pay tribute to four fallen American heroes, the victims of a suicide bomb attack in Syria. He will be meeting with their families. As is his habit now, he stopped to answer questions from the press before boarding Marine One. He was asked about the Buzzfeed story and thanked Mueller’s Office of Special Counsel (OSC) for issuing a statement strongly pushing back on the credibility of the story.

‘It hurts me to say it but mainstream media has really hurt its credibility”, Trump said. He called the story – one that claimed President Trump instructed his former lawyer Michael Cohen to lie to Congress about a prospective business deal in Moscow a “total phony story” and a “disgrace to the country, to journalism. Media coverage was disgraceful.” Apparently, disgraceful is the word of the day. He’s not wrong.

“BuzzFeed’s description of specific statements to the special counsel’s office, and characterization of documents and testimony obtained by this office, regarding Michael Cohen’s congressional testimony are not accurate,” said Peter Carr, a spokesman for Mueller.

A little less than 24 hours after Buzzfeed broke the story, Meuller’s office issued that statement. That alone is newsworthy because it is so rare for OSC, at least Mueller’s, to issue any statement at all. I’m guessing the need to issue the statement was due to the over the top coverage of the Buzzfeed story. With the exception of Fox News, all television networks seemed to take the story as the gospel and brought on politicians and pundits happy to declare that the highly anticipated impeachment of President Trump is on the horizon. The coverage was quite a sight to behold. Though the cheerleaders of impeachment have consistently been burned, this time this story would surely be the one that takes down Trump, right? Wrong. The punditry class should have realized that they were traveling down the wrong path once again as no other media outlet confirmed the validity of the Buzzfeed story. Were it to be verifiable, how long do you think it would have taken CNN or MSNBC to gleefully announce that breaking news?

The Justice Department acknowledges that OSC would only issue such a statement if the story was believed by them to be false. (WaPo)

Inside the Justice Department, the statement was viewed as a huge step, and one that would have been taken only if the special counsel’s office viewed the story as almost entirely incorrect. The special counsel’s office seemed to be disputing every aspect of the story that addressed comments or evidence given to its investigators.

The explicit denial by the special counsel’s office is likely to provide further ammunition to complaints by Trump and his supporters that press coverage of him is unfair and inaccurate.

This does, in fact, give the president additional ammo against the media and their wildly skewed coverage of him and his administration. The lesson is a hard one for the anti-Trump media. How many times does Lucy have to pull the football away from Charlie Brown before they show some small amount of professional decorum? Verifying sources is a pretty basic part of professional journalism. The Buzzfeed story claimed texts, documents, and emails were all there, though the reporters had not seen any of them.

I called b.s. on the story early on. One of the reporters is the same one who reported on Karl Rove’s indictment in 2007 during the Valerie Plame story investigation. That story was quickly proven wrong. It’s hard to take a journalist seriously after that. President Trump told reporters Saturday that the “media can pull the country together” yet we know that will not happen in Trump’s America. There is big money to be made and careers to launch over the divisions in our country now and the media has clearly chosen a side.

Buzzfeed, by the way, is not copping to their mistake. (WaPo)

Following the special counsel’s denial, BuzzFeed insisted its story was correct. In a statement, the website’s top editor, Ben Smith, said, “We stand by our reporting and the sources who informed it, and we urge the Special Counsel to make clear what he’s disputing.”

It looks like to me that OSC was clearly disputing the validity of the story. Maybe taking a claim from an admitted liar and convicted felon isn’t such a great source for a story. Here are some tweets that haven’t aged well from the 24-hour freak-out.

And even Never-Trumper CNN legal contributor Jeffrey Toobin admits the media hung itself with the story, though the panel is still in denial
.

The post Trump thanks Mueller for slapping back at Buzzfeed story appeared first on Hot Air.

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Trump: so here’s the deal…

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I’ll confess that when I wrote about the President’s expected immigration and border wall offer this morning I left open the idea that he might declare a national emergency just to throw everyone a curve ball. That didn’t happen. Instead, he went with Option B which I also mentioned. He’s putting a DACA/TPS offer on the table and seemingly daring Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats to turn it down. (NBC News)

President Donald Trump proposed a deal to end the government shutdown that continued his demand for $5.7 billion in funding for his border wall, but contained what he suggested was a concession to Democrats: three years of protections for immigrants who were brought to the country illegally as children and those who fled certain countries and are covered under the “temporary protected status” program.

“This plan solves the immediate crisis, and it is a horrible crisis,” Trump said in an address to the nation, delivered from the Diplomatic Room at the White House. “And it provides humanitarian relief, delivers real border security and immediately reopens our federal government.”

Trump said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., has agreed to put his proposal into a bill and bring it up on the floor by the end of next week.

Democratic leaders in Congress declared the plan dead on arrival, issuing a spate of statements based on early news reports of what Trump intended to propose.

This looks like The Art of the Deal in action, at least at first glance. I was expecting some sort of deal for the dreamers that gave them permanent legal alien status and perhaps a shot at citizenship after a sufficient period had passed for those currently following legal means to become citizens. Ten years seems about right.

Trump offered less than that. Three years is on the table, along with some other goodies that the Democrats have been asking for. And three years takes them past the next election, so if a Democrat wins the White House they could expand on that as I suggested above. And it would reopen much of the government and put many furloughed workers back on the job. What’s not to like, right?

Supposedly, there’s plenty not to like. Pelosi didn’t even give it a moment’s notice in any serious way.

“It is unlikely that any one of these provisions alone would pass the House, and taken together, they are a non-starter,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in a statement. “For one thing, this proposal does not include the permanent solution for the Dreamers and TPS recipients that our country needs and supports.”

Now the battle lines have been fully drawn. Trump came to the table and offered some options that Democrats have been pushing for, but not all that they desire. That’s the definition of negotiating. If the new Speaker had come back with a comment about it being “a good starting point” we might have gotten somewhere. But she shut it down cold.

Is that going to tip the blame game? Probably not. John Podhoretz explained why and it once again has to do with how the media will spin the story.

As I responded to John, there will be no media pressure. It will simply be “not good enough.” They’ll seek to continue placing the blame on Trump even though he offered a bounty of riches the Dems desired. Pelosi won’t cave on any money for the wall because she believes that her continued leadership in her party depends on defeating Trump rather than getting anything done.

The Shutdown Theater story is far from over I’m afraid. Unless, of course, somebody can put a bug in Pelosi’s ear and get her to come back with a reasonable counteroffer.

The post Trump: so here’s the deal… appeared first on Hot Air.

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Women’s March continues despite internal anti-Semitism

Westlake Legal Group ProtestMarch Women’s March continues despite internal anti-Semitism Women's March 2019 Trump Derangement Syndrome The Blog equal rights anti-semitism

Today is the big day for the far left and anti-Trump women. In stark contrast to the March for Life that occurred yesterday in Washington, D.C., the women marching Saturday are all about abortion and ousting President Trump out of office. Those pink pussy hats will come in handy as the weather will be quite chilly. The media will go from start to finish in their coverage of the Women’s March while hardly a peep is uttered about the March for Life, an annual event since 1974.

One statement that caught my eye in the Women’s March Agenda (uploaded by a man) is the first sentence in the introduction. “Historically, protest movements are difficult to sustain.” Sure, interest wanes over time and passionate emotions that inspire people to take it to the streets die down but isn’t it interesting that this statement isn’t true for the March for Life? More than 40 years later, the March for Life continues to grow in numbers while this year the Women’s March is expected to shrink in numbers, after only three years.

Maybe it’s because it is more sustainable to march in favor of a big issue (dignity for all lives) than to march for a hodgepodge of every grievance imaginable. It’s a challenge these days to keep up with all the lingo used by the social justice warriors, but today a big word used by Women’s March supporters is ‘intersectionality’. I confess that only recently did I understand what that word means to the protesters. In a nutshell, it’s been described as a matrix where gender, race, and class overlap in the hierarchy. For example, I am a straight white married woman raised in a traditional family in a Christian church, so I’m at the bottom of the totem pole. The only person with less cred in this structure is my husband who is of the same description as me but the male version. You get the point. The big hurdle this year for the Women’s March is addressing the blatant anti-Semitism of its leadership. Embracing Louis Farrakhan is not a good look and prominent Democrats have finally begun to distance themselves from the march.

Some cities have canceled the marches.

Another Women’s March event has been canceled days before the three-year anniversary of the original Women’s March in 2017 following the election of Donald Trump as president. The Baton Rouge chapter of the Organization for Women announced on Facebook that the New Orleans Women’s March will not be happening because national Women’s March leaders have not resigned.

The late December announcement coincides with the cancellation of two other events in major areas. A Northern California Women’s March was canceled because attendees at the first two events had been ” overwhelmingly white.” Chicago organizers are not holding a January event there, saying a substitute event was held in October to drum up excitement for the midterm elections.

“The controversy is dampening efforts of sister marches to fundraise, enlist involvement, find sponsors and attendee numbers have drastically declined this year. New Orleans is no exception,” the Baton Rouge chapter wrote. “Many of the sister marches have asked the leaders of Women’s March, Inc. to resign but as of today, they have yet to do so.”

A list of 2019 Women’s March Partners can be found HERE. You can see what I mean by a hodgepodge of support. There’s a little bit of everything on that list, except pro-life, conservative organizations. There’s even a special acknowledgment of distillery Johnnie Walker and their campaign of artwork for the Women’s March. I wrote some months ago about their decision to ramp up marketing their products to women and now they are providing downloadable artwork in support of the march.

As far as I can tell, the march will go on in Houston today. USA Today reports 350 cities will have marches. The march in Houston is a “March for Justice”, whatever that means.

In 2018, we worked together to bring an unprecedented wave of voters and candidates to the midterm elections. In 2019 we’re doubling down on the call for justice in our world with the 2019 Houston Women March For Justice Saturday, January 19, 2019.

What does justice look like for you? We’re inviting organizations working for justice regarding violence, ethnicity, gender, the criminal justice system, age, health, education, socio-economic and wage gap, housing, immigration, environmental, representational democracy (anti-gerrymandering!), and more. During the 2019 Houston Women March For Justice, you’ll have the opportunity to join thousands of people to take actions for justice and to learn how help people and organizations in our region.

After the Houston march, a fundraiser is being held for women’s pay equity. Sigh. That widely disclaimed trope continues.

Today will be a day for network reporters to join in on the marches under the pretext of covering them and all the usual celebrities will make appearances. We’ll see how big their attendance numbers are and how it all shakes out amid the recent controversies that have exposed what bigotry looks like on the left side of the aisle. Mostly it is a continuation of mob mentality trying to change the results of an election. Trump Derangement Syndrome is alive and well.

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Is there any chance the Senate would pass Trump’s new immigration compromise?

Westlake Legal Group m-2 Is there any chance the Senate would pass Trump’s new immigration compromise? work permits Trump tps The Blog pelosi immigration dream daca bridge act amnesty

Just following up on Ed’s post from earlier. There are two audiences for Trump’s immigration offer today, the broader public and congressional Democrats. As a play for public support I think it’s smart. Trump has spent the last few weeks trying to convince voters that Pelosi, not he, is the real obstacle to ending the shutdown. And that’s sort of true. Granted, it’s his eleventh-hour demand for wall money that triggered the standoff, but he’s willing to make some concessions to get it. Pelosi’s not willing to concede anything. The point of Democratic obstruction here is nothing more or less than to spite Trump by denying him the one policy win he wants above all others. Doesn’t matter if he puts DREAM on the table, doesn’t matter that the $5 billion he’s asking for is spare change in the context of total federal spending. The left won an election and their prize is getting to make Trump cry. Simple as that.

Going on national TV to put something on the table in the name of ending the shutdown is Trump’s way of underlining all of that for viewers. He’s willing to deal. He’s willing to do something for DREAMers, with whom the great majority of the public sympathizes. He’s only asking for $5 billion, far short of what he’d need to actually complete the wall. (How does he plan to finish the wall, anyway, when Democrats are quite likely to hold the House through the end of his presidency?) He’s the reasonable one here. Pelosi’s the fanatic. That’s the point of today’s speech from a theatrical standpoint. It’s a good idea. It might even stop, or slow, the erosion in his job approval numbers over the last few weeks.

But as I say, there are two audiences for today’s speech. He and Jared don’t really believe that this offer will make headway with the other audience, the Democrats in the Senate, do they?

Tell me: Which Senate Democrats do they think will vote for this? Note that the BRIDGE Act, importantly, isn’t a permanent amnesty for DACA recipients like the DREAM Act would be. It includes no path to citizenship. It’s a three-year extension of a DACA enrollee’s right to remain in the United States. Pelosi would be giving Trump a downpayment on a permanent barrier at the border in exchange for temporary relief for illegals. For years border hawks have opposed immigration compromises because that equation normally runs the opposite way — permanent amnesty in return for some border enhancements that’ll take years to build and might well be rescinded by Democrats if they win total control of government before those enhancements are finished. That’s why so many immigration restrictionists demand that new border security measures be finished before any amnesty takes effect. They don’t want to get suckered. Now here’s Trump essentially trying to sucker Democrats along the same lines Imagine if they agreed to the deal and Trump won a second term. He’d get the wall and would still be able to deport DACA recipients in three years when their BRIDGE eligibility dried up.

Lay all of that aside, though. How many centrist Democrats are left in the Senate who’d even consider compromising with Trump at a moment when the left is frantic to see him surrender unconditionally? Virtually all of the red-state Dems who might have struggled with this offer were up for reelection this past November. The ones who survived, like Joe Manchin, won’t have to worry about facing voters again until 2024, an eternity in the Trump era when political developments move at light speed. The only Dem who *might* throw POTUS a bone here purely out of self-interest is Doug Jones, who’s facing a longshot reelection bid in Alabama next year. But Jones has been stubborn since joining Congress; he hasn’t joined Trump on many big votes despite the pressure on him to pander to conservatives back home. (He voted no on Kavanaugh, remember.) I think he’s come to the conclusion, correctly, that he’s a sure loser next year no matter how he votes, in which case he might as well vote his conscience and let the electoral chips fall where they may. So Trump might not even get him.

But let’s say he does. That’s one Democratic vote. McConnell would need seven to beat a filibuster. Who are the other six? And are we absolutely sure that all 53 Republicans will vote yes, if only as a vote of confidence in Trump’s approach? I don’t know that Tom Cotton, for instance, would sign off on even a temporary amnesty. Every Republican vote that’s lost will need to be replaced by another Democratic one. And needless to say, the willingness of Dems to accept a “BRIDGE for wall” deal in isolation isn’t the same as the willingness of Dems to accept a “BRIDGE for wall” trade under the particular circumstances we now find ourselves in — Day 1,000 of a shutdown staring contest between Democratic leaders and the Republican president whom they hate. I think Jones and a few others might take a close look at a “BRIDGE for wall” swap under normal circumstances; in fact, notes Fred Bauer, five Democrats who are currently in the Senate co-sponsored the BRIDGE Act. But to lunge at Trump’s offer now would mean damaging Pelosi’s leverage and handing the media a gift-wrapped “DEMOCRATIC CIVIL WAR OVER TRUMP’S OFFER” headline. It would be a clear signal from Senate Dems that Trump is right, that he’s the sensible party in all this and Pelosi is the mindless obstructionist who doesn’t care about federal workers getting paid. The left would be irate at the betrayal. It’s unimaginable that Dems would break ranks in this climate and turn it into a “Senate Democrats versus House Democrats” storyline.

…Especially at a moment when POTUS is signaling that he’s tired of the shutdown himself. That’s the one wrinkle in today’s otherwise savvy PR stunt. He’s coming to the table and trying to jumpstart a deal to end the crisis, a hint that he’s desperate to end this before he suffers any more political damage. Why would Democrats throw him a lifeline? They’ll probably take this afternoon’s speech as a sign that it’s almost over and he’s ready to cave if they hold out just a bit longer. In fact, there’s bound to be a faction of hardcore Coulterite border hawks on right who’ll throw a fit that Trump would dangle even a temporary amnesty as a way out of this. By telling him no, Democrats will create an opening for those righty populists to beat him up for “showing weakness” or whatever by offering them BRIDGE.

All of which is a long-winded way of saying that I think his offer is dead in the water in the Senate. I’d be surprised if the proposal gets more than one Democratic vote and would say there’s an outside chance that it ends up with fewer than 50, let alone 60. But maybe POTUS and Kushner believe that, if nothing else, this might invite a Democratic counteroffer that can move the two sides towards a more meaningful compromise. If Jones votes no on “BRIDGE for wall” but comes back with the idea of “DREAM for wall,” what happens then? This is one way to maybe shake that scenario loose.

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Here’s why lots of people were talking about ‘baby Hitler’ Friday

Westlake Legal Group Ben-Shapiro Here’s why lots of people were talking about ‘baby Hitler’ Friday The Blog Ben Shapiro baby hitler

Did you notice that lots of people on social media were talking about baby Hitler Friday? It was a top trending topic on Twitter. Why did this happen? The short answer is that Ben Shapiro brought up baby Hitler to make a point at the March for Life and a left-wing activist clipped a portion of what he was saying to ridicule him. Here’s the 21-second clip:

You may have noticed that Jordan, the person who clipped the video, didn’t actually say anything about it. But Jordan clearly knows his audience. Progressives spent the morning making fun of the clip because it’s Ben Shapiro talking about baby Hitler. And once it got going, everyone wanted to chime in. Vox wrote a whole piece about the philosophical problems with killing baby Hitler which pointed out that this question has been circulating in the media since 2015:

In fact, one of the people who was asked this question back in 2015 was actor Tom Hanks. Hanks seemed to think everyone would agree with killing baby Hitler when, as you can see in that NY Times poll above, about a third of people say they would not.

In any case, here’s the context to this. Shapiro gave a speech at the March for Life Friday which was partly about the culture’s attempts to avoid looking at the reality of abortion through the use of euphemisms and disingenuous arguments. One of the arguments he referenced in passing was one made in the book Freakonomics, i.e. that abortion lowers crime rates. In addition to his speech, Shapiro also talked through a list of 10 arguments frequently made in favor of abortion. The last one of those was the argument about lower crime rates. That’s where he mentioned baby Hitler.

After introducing the argument from Freakonomics, Shapiro said, “I don’t know who is comfortable with the pre-crime version of humanity where we get to decide before you’re born whether you’re likely to be a criminal and then abort you based on future criminal activity in which you have not participated.”

“The argument, I guess, here is that ‘Would you kill baby Hitler?’ And the truth is that no pro-life person on earth would kill baby Hitler, right? Because baby Hitler wasn’t Hitler. Adult Hitler was Hitler. Baby Hitler was a baby. What you presumably want to do with baby Hitler was take baby Hitler out of baby Hitler’s house and move baby Hitler into a better house where he would not grow up to be Hitler. That’s the idea.”

The crowd seemed to appreciate this both because it’s a solid argument against using abortion to lower crime rates and because it’s an amusing way to make the argument. Shapiro then argued that “the crime statistics do not match up” so even if you accept the Faustian bargain of ‘more abortion, less crime’ the data doesn’t seem to support that.

Here’s the fuller video clip which contains Shapiro’s quote about baby Hitler. He’s making a perfectly reasonable argument in response to a real argument that is sometimes cited as a benefit of abortion. His progressive critics were doing exactly what Shapiro suggested the culture tends to do whenever it’s confronted with abortion, find a way to avoid looking squarely at it.

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