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Westlake Legal Group > Posts tagged "Featured Story" (Page 345)

Woke: California High School May Paint Over Historic George Washington Murals Because They “Traumatize” Students

Westlake Legal Group woke-california-high-school-may-paint-over-historic-george-washington-murals-because-they-traumatize-students Woke: California High School May Paint Over Historic George Washington Murals Because They “Traumatize” Students progressives Popular Culture Politics political correctness North Carolina George Washington Front Page Stories Front Page Featured Story Featured Post Education democrats Culture California Allow Media Exception
Westlake Legal Group george-washington-620x350 Woke: California High School May Paint Over Historic George Washington Murals Because They “Traumatize” Students progressives Popular Culture Politics political correctness North Carolina George Washington Front Page Stories Front Page Featured Story Featured Post Education democrats Culture California Allow Media Exception

Detail from Rembrandt Peale’s Washington Before Yorktown. (Source)

A high school in San Francisco, California is considering painting over two George Washington murals due to concerns that African-American and Native American and students are being “traumatized.”

The College Fix reports:

The controversy comes after a working group determined the mural, made up of several panels, “traumatizes students and community members.” But advocates for keeping the 83-year-old mural say that removing it ignores the intent of the artist and represents an attempt to erase history.

In 1936, Victor Arnautoff painted the 13 panels that make up the “Life of Washington” mural at the San Francisco Unified School District campus. Arnautoff was a prominent Russian-American painter who created the murals as part of a Works Progress Administration project undertaken during the New Deal.

But a working group that met in recent months determined the artwork is highly problematic and should be archived after being removed from the walls of the school.

“SFUSD convened a ‘Reflection and Action Working Group’ that was comprised of members of the local Native American community, students, school representatives, district representatives, local artists and historians,” Laura Dudnick, spokeswoman for the district, wrote in an email to The College Fix.

The murals are now considered “endangered” and the public has been invited to view them on Saturday:

Here are the working group’s conclusions:

The 13 member working group held four public meetings and in February 2019, issued their final recommendation: to remove the entire Life of George Washington mural series from the school.

“We come to these recommendations due to the continued historical and current trauma of Native Americans and African Americans with these depictions in the mural that glorifies slavery, genocide, colonization, manifest destiny, white supremacy, oppression, etc. This mural doesn’t represent SFUSD values of social justice, diversity, united, student-centered. It’s not student-centered if it’s focused on the legacy of artists, rather than the experience of the students. If we consider the SFUSD equity definition, the “low” mural glorifies oppression instead of eliminating it. It also perpetuates bias through stereotypes rather than ending bias. It has nothing to do with equity or inclusion at all. The impact of this mural is greater than its intent ever was. It’s not a counter-narrative if [the mural] traumatizes students and community members.”

Because the murals are painted onto the plaster of the walls at the school, removing them would mean painting them over with white paint.

Watch a 2010 video from the the San Francisco Arts Commission on the historic significance of the murals and efforts to restore them below:

One historian finds the group’s recommendations deeply troubling:

[Historian Fergus M.] Bordewich, in a phone interview with The Fix, said there “is a deeply wrongheaded habit to project today’s norms, values, ideals backwards in time to find our ancestors inevitably falling short.”

“It betrays a very troubling intolerance of art and the ambiguity of art and the aspirations of art,” he said.

[…]

Bordewich added that the “mural is not a celebration of genocide, it’s a challenge to westward expansion.”

“It’s incredibly stupid if we try to erase history,” he said. “It still happened, and you should argue about its meanings.”

The working group has no jurisdiction over the school, so ultimately the decision on how to handle the murals will have to be made by the San Francisco Unified School District board of education.

———————
Sister Toldjah is a former liberal and a 15+ year veteran of blogging with an emphasis on media bias, social issues, and the culture wars. Read her Red State archives here. Connect with her on Twitter.–

The post Woke: California High School May Paint Over Historic George Washington Murals Because They “Traumatize” Students appeared first on RedState.

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Petition Started for UNCC Shooting Victim and Hero Riley Howell, an ROTC Cadet, to Be Buried With Full Military Honors

Westlake Legal Group UNCCharlotte-KennedyBldg Petition Started for UNCC Shooting Victim and Hero Riley Howell, an ROTC Cadet, to Be Buried With Full Military Honors UNCC Riley Howell North Carolina military Guns gun control Front Page Stories Front Page Featured Story Featured Post Education crime Charlotte Allow Media Exception

The Kennedy building at UNC Charlotte, the scene of Tuesday’s deadly mass shooting. Screen grab via WXII.

On Wednesday, I wrote about UNC Charlotte student Riley Howell, 21, who was killed in Tuesday’s deadly mass shooting in the university’s Kennedy building.

Howell was one of two students who died that day. The other one was 19-year-old Ellis Parlier. Four other students were injured in the attack: 19-year-old Drew Pescaro, 20-year-old Sean Dehart, 20-year-old Rami Alramadhan, and 23-year-old Emily Houpt.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Chief Kerr Putney said in a press conference on Wednesday that Howell’s actions saved people’s lives:

“You’re either going to run, you’re going to hide and shield, or you’re going to take the fight to the assailant. Having no place to run and hide, he did the last. But for his work, the assailant may not have been disarmed,” Putney said. “Unfortunately, he gave his life in the process. But his sacrifice saved lives.”

The gunman had a lot of ammunition and while detectives aren’t sure if he was targeting anyone specifically Tuesday, they know he picked out the Kennedy Building and gave no indication he was going to stop shooting before Howell charged, Putney said.

“His sacrifice saved lives,” the chief said.

His family issued a statement noting that Riley had considered a career in the military or firefighting:

Riley considered a career in the military or firefighting before enrolling in college. He relished the big challenges, whether it be jumping from the highest cliff into the water below or power lifting competitions at the gym. Once committed to something- he never gave up, never gave in, and gave everything he had- always.

And from CBS News:

Lt. Col. Chunka Smith, who runs UNC Charlotte’s ROTC program, said he’s not surprised Howell gave his life for others.

“I would tell you, he stood out,” Smith said.

“Do you feel a sense of pride in what he did?” CBS News correspondent Chip Reid asked.

“I do. Absolutely. As a soldier, we understand what it means to make the ultimate sacrifice,” Smith said.

As a result of Howell’s heroic actions and because he was an ROTC cadet, a petition has been started requesting to have him buried with full military honors:

Riley Howell, 21, died while tackling the gunman of the UNCC campus shooting on April 30. He was one of 2 students killed and 4 wounded, but there may have been many more victims had Riley not rushed the gunman and tackled him.

Riley was an ROTC cadet and would have served his country. Instead, he died saving the lives of his classmates.

For his heroism, we ask the Riley be given a burial with full military honors.

As of this writing, the petition has nearly 18,000 signatures. It needs 100,000 by May 31st in order to get a response from the White House.

After the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School mass shooting last February, three of the victims were posthumously awarded the Army Medal of Heroism: Peter Wang, 15, Alaina Petty, 14, and Martin Duque, 14. All three were ROTC cadets.

Wang was buried in his cadet uniform with the medal, and was given a posthumous offer of admission to West Point for his heroic actions.

A GoFundMe page has been started for Howell’s family. His body was brought back to his hometown of Waynesville, NC on Thursday. Funeral and memorial services will be held Saturday and Sunday for Howell.

———————
Sister Toldjah is a former liberal and a 15+ year veteran of blogging with an emphasis on media bias, social issues, and the culture wars. Read her Red State archives here. Connect with her on Twitter.–

The post Petition Started for UNCC Shooting Victim and Hero Riley Howell, an ROTC Cadet, to Be Buried With Full Military Honors appeared first on RedState.

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Marco Rubio Blasts Ilhan Omar for Supporting the Maduro Regime

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This is a bit of an update on my previous post where we saw Ilhan Omar make several statements in support of the current socialist regime in Venezuela, as well as her blaming the U.S. for the turmoil.

Here’s an excerpt from that article.

“This particular bullying and the use of sanctions to eventually intervene and make regime change really does not help the people of countries like Venezuela, and it certainly does not help and is not in the interest of the United States,” Omar said on the progressive television program.

It goes without saying (except for apparently Omar) that yes, it does indeed help the people of Venezuela to no longer be under the thumb of an oppressive dictator. It is also very evident that Maduro no longer being in power is in the interest of the U.S. We are not dealing with an Islamic state where it’s often questionable whether a current regime is better than what comes after. In the case of Venezuela, it’s fairly black and white. They either keep their socialist dictator or return to a more normal democracy.

The way Omar so reflexively continues to support the Maduro regime, instead speaking against her own country, is fairly jarring, yet expected at this point.

Sen. Marco Rubio caught wind of her comments and didn’t hold back.

Rubio goes on to say she has “no idea what she’s talking about” and that her comment is “embarrassing,” while pointing out that Omar’s comments on sanctions are a complete falsehood.

The sanctions on Venezuela have only been in place for two months, which is not enough time to even make a dent yet. Before that, the only sanctions were on individuals within the country, which would logically not hamper the overall economy. People have been eating dogs and digging in the trash for food for years now in Venezuela. It is not the fault of the United States but of the failures of their socialist dictatorship.

Ilhan Omar’s worldview is so incredibly regressive that she can’t help but defend Maduro while blaming the country which graciously took her in as a refugee. It’s a crazy switching of roles which routinely plays out in her statements and no one outside of right-leaning sources every call her on it.

Since Rubio questioned Omar’s intelligence in this clip, I assume he’ll be labeled a racist by the end of the day. Maybe that’ll finally get CNN and MSNBC talking about Omar’s comments though? There’s your bright side.

Who are the people who disapprove here? I ask that sincerely. How can you disapprove of near record low unemployment, exploding growth far outpacing expectations, and the first real wage growth we’ve seen in over a decade? What’s not to like exactly?

It goes to show how silly politics can be. I guarantee you that those same 41% all approved of Obama’s economy when it was stuck at 1% growth and wages were stagnant. There are actually people out there who’d rather suffer than admit someone in the opposing party did something right.

Typically, economic health is a good indicator of a President’s re-election chances. This is Donald Trump though so the normal rules can probably be thrown out the window. How well he’s able to stay on message in promoting the current great economy will make or break him. A little discipline will go a long way.

————————————————-

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The post Marco Rubio Blasts Ilhan Omar for Supporting the Maduro Regime appeared first on RedState.

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After Declaring Sites UNRELIABLE Poynter Has Its Blacklist Webpage Blacked Out

Westlake Legal Group Poynter After Declaring Sites UNRELIABLE Poynter Has Its Blacklist Webpage Blacked Out Uncategorized Front Page Stories Featured Story

 

It has been a tough week for the journalism “experts” over at the Poynter Institute. It was just two days ago when the supposed training outlet for writers and reporters released an extensive list of “Unreliable” news sites. As detailed RedState, Twitchy, and PJ Media were just a few of the sites on its list.

Soon after its release there was backlash felt by Poynter, and the wave of problems and complaints poured in. After a number of legitimate news outlets were cited as incorrectly designated some corrections to the list were made. Then language was struck from the article that accompanied the list, which had initially called for advertisers to blacklist the sites.

Now however when you click the link to the pages with these lists they seem to have vanished.

Sure enough, when trying to pull up that screen you get their announcement of that page not able to be located. This is not a technical error. After all of the critical blowback, it appears that Poynter is going to memory-hole that whole debacle of a list. Official word came last night that the list was taken down by Poynter executives.

In a statement on their site from the managing editor they attempted to explain what happened:

“We began an audit to test the accuracy and veracity of the list, and while we feel that many of the sites did have a track record of publishing unreliable information, our review found weaknesses in the methodology. We detected inconsistencies between the findings of the original databases that were the sources for the list and our own rendering of the final report.”

Additionally, in a tweet sent out just this morning, they went further in explaining.

We’ve taken this list down after finding inconsistencies in the methodology. We regret that we failed to ensure that the data was rigorous before publication, and apologize for the confusion and agitation caused by its publication.

TRANSLATION: We just copied a bunch of lists from a number of questionable fact-checking websites without doing the research ourselves.

For an outlet that drapes itself as an arbiter of journalistic standards to push out such a disreputable and flawed measurement of news sites is beyond an embarrassment. The problems behind this were deep and significant, and it has seen Poynter descend to the level of irresponsible journalism it was reputedly condemning.

The author of this report was Barrett Golding, from the growingly ridiculed Southern Poverty Law Center. For his compilation, Golding relied on lists of sites compiled at disreputable fact-checking outlets such as Snopes, and PolitiFact.

And, as many noted, the list had a very distinct right-of-center feel. Nearly the entire list was made up of outlets with a conservative bent, and this was by design. It was just under two years ago when Poynter made the announcement it received $1.3 million to begin work on its International Fact Checking Network. This week’s blacklist derived from that very segment of the Poynter entity, and it becomes clear this was a purchased attempt at slandering right-of-center outlets.

That huge windfall Poynter proudly announced came from two sources. Leftist billionaire Pierre Omidyar (he being the money behind the supposed “conservative” Never-Trump cranksite The Bulwark) donated through his Omidyar Network. The other source of that funding comes from The Open Society Foundations, the George Soros philanthropic organization.

Understanding this backing it makes far more sense why this now deposed list of “problematic” news sources was made up primarily of conservative outlets. It also explains why it included a rather activist tone in carrying the message for advertisers on how to boycott those outlets.

Once exposed for the biased hit job that this was the Poynter blacklist has disappeared. The list that declared particular outlets were only “clickbait” is now unclickable. Beyond that, the outlet that decreed certain sites to be “unreliable” has now become exactly that, the very thing they claimed to address.

The post After Declaring Sites UNRELIABLE Poynter Has Its Blacklist Webpage Blacked Out appeared first on RedState.

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Hysteria Abounds as Florida Passes a Statewide Ban on Sanctuary Cities

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Outrage ensues, but not common sense, as Florida passes a law to honor federal immigration laws.

It has been a furious week in Tallahassee as the legislative branch has been working overtime most nights this week hammering out new policies. The session is ending today so any new bills expecting to be passed had to be finalized. One of those is a long-gestating policy to prevent any authorities from lending cover to illegal immigrants.

The statewide ban on county and municipal leaders desiring to shield illegal immigrants has been a long in the works bill. The deadline on the current session has helped to bring about enough urgency to get the embattled House and Senate to compromise enough to send the bill to the desk of Governor Ron DeSantis.

The main component of the bill concerned ensuring that local and state officials honor requests by federal law enforcement in regards to immigration detainers, in accordance with federal immigration law. Honoring these federal requests would be considered a required action. Governor DeSantis is expected to sign this into law, and there has been no lack of hysterical outrage regarding the passage.

Immediately following the announcement that passage in the Senate took place late Thursday night the Florida Democratic Party reacted in their expected calm manner.

It can be said the party here needs to calm down. The state still welcomes immigrants, so long as they are here legally and are properly documented. Some estimates show the immigrant population in the state may run as high as 20%. In typical fashion, the Democrats want to elide the “illegal” component in their outcry.

Not to be outdone the American Civil Liberties Union issued a travel warning for the state. In a tweet sent out regarding the bill possibly being passed the ACLU issued their warning for “immigrants and people of color” to be wary when traveling in Florida. Why they think this would affect POC residents is not exactly explained.

It has even been said that this bill could be bad news for gays as well, because when demonizing a piece of legislation you need to incorporate all possible aggrieved groups. Many of the local papers have run their opposition pieces, warning of the economic calamities that may follow, how communities will dissolve, that this defaces the history of the state, and it will even negatively impact the next census.

Mind you, all of this wailing is concerning passage of a bill that addresses enforcement of the current law. The only people who will be directly affected are those who are not following immigration policies. If following the law will lead to all of this societal upheaval imagine what allowing the lawbreaking to go unaddressed could lead to!

The post Hysteria Abounds as Florida Passes a Statewide Ban on Sanctuary Cities appeared first on RedState.

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Ukrainian Embassy Admits DNC Operative Contacted Them Seeking Russia Dirt on Trump Campaign in 2016

Westlake Legal Group ukrainian-embassy-admits-dnc-operative-contacted-them-seeking-russia-dirt-on-trump-campaign-in-2016 Ukrainian Embassy Admits DNC Operative Contacted Them Seeking Russia Dirt on Trump Campaign in 2016 Ukraine Russia Manafort Front Page Stories Featured Story dnc Black Ledger Abuse of Power

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Former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort’s role in the Russia collusion probe has always been a bit opaque. We already know he had spent years lobbying and developing political connections in Ukraine before volunteering to help the Trump campaign in early 2016 was ever even a glint in his eye. We also know he was being sued for millions by Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska for not successfully carrying out a job related to those lobbying efforts.

Now we learn from no less than the Ukrainian embassy in Washington DC that an insider from the Democratic National Committee (DNC) had tried to, as John Solomon writes at The Hill, solicit “dirt on Donald Trump’s campaign chairman and even tried to enlist the country’s president to help.”

The DNC operative, Alexandra Chalupa, was apparently trying to get information related to Manafort’s interests in the Ukraine, and specifically his Russian ties related to his work there, all during the 2016 campaign. The Ukrainian embassy says they did not know she was working on behalf of the DNC and simply though she was a Ukrainian-American activist.

The kicker? At the same time she was digging for info, she was suggesting that the information she uncovered would be used to convince Congress to initiate hearings on Manafort’s ties to Russia. Or, even stranger, she was hoping to get the go-ahead to have an investigative journalist ask questions about Manafort to Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko  in an upcoming visit.

In written answers to questions, Ambassador Valeriy Chaly’s office says DNC contractor Alexandra Chalupa sought information from the Ukrainian government on Paul Manafort’s dealings inside the country, in hopes of forcing the issue before Congress.

Chalupa later tried to arrange for Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko to comment on Manafort’s Russian ties on a U.S. visit during the 2016 campaign, the ambassador said.

Chaly says that, at the time of the contacts in 2016, the embassy knew Chalupa primarily as a Ukrainian-American activist, and learned only later of her ties to the DNC. He says the embassy considered her requests an inappropriate solicitation of interference in the U.S. election.

“The Embassy got to know Ms. Chalupa because of her engagement with Ukrainian and other diasporas in Washington D.C., and not in her DNC capacity. We’ve learned about her DNC involvement later,” Chaly said in a statement issued by his embassy. “We were surprised to see Alexandra’s interest in Mr. Paul Manafort’s case. It was her own cause. The Embassy representatives unambiguously refused to get involved in any way, as we were convinced that this is a strictly U.S. domestic matter.

“All ideas floated by Alexandra were related to approaching a Member of Congress with a purpose to initiate hearings on Paul Manafort or letting an investigative journalist ask President Poroshenko a question about Mr. Manafort during his public talk in Washington, D.C.,” the ambassador explained.

This is just the latest in the strange tale of how Ukrainian officials leaked documents related to Manafort, provided intel to Fusion GPS, and even visited the Obama White House, a meeting that led to the U.S. requesting help from the Ukrainians to help investigate Manafort. And in the background, Donald Trump is shocking the world by rising in the polls leading up to the 2016 election.

While Chalupa had used enough foresight to give a 2017 interview to Politico for a piece detailing Ukraine’s efforts to sabotage Trump’s campaign, Solomon says the embassy admission that she reached out to them adds an interesting wrinkle.

FEC records show Chalupa’s firm, Chalupa & Associates, was paid $71,918 by the DNC during the 2016 election cycle.

For their part, the Ukrainian embassy denies they provided any information to Chalupa, but there is some debate over the truth of that statement. One former employee of Ukrainian Ambassador Valeriy Chaly’s indicated he met with Chalupa over lunch to discuss her efforts.

Over lunch at a Washington restaurant, Chalupa told [Andrii] Telizhenko in stark terms what she hoped the Ukrainians could provide the DNC and the Clinton campaign, according to his account.

“She said the DNC wanted to collect evidence that Trump, his organization and Manafort were Russian assets, working to hurt the U.S. and working with Putin against the U.S. interests. She indicated if we could find the evidence they would introduce it in Congress in September and try to build a case that Trump should be removed from the ballot, from the election,” he recalled.

Solomon also writes that emails exist from May 2016 in which Chalupa tells a top DNC operative that there is a lot more to come in her efforts to link the Trump campaign to Russia. A month later, the “black ledger” files showing payments to Manafort were released in the Ukraine, forcing Manafort to officially exit his role as Trump’s campaign manager.

The post Ukrainian Embassy Admits DNC Operative Contacted Them Seeking Russia Dirt on Trump Campaign in 2016 appeared first on RedState.

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When Cornered, One Can Choose Either To Surrender or To Strike; The Democrats Have Chosen To Strike

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Attorney General William Barr’s statement that “spying did occur” sent shockwaves throughout Washington last month. Then, he went even further and said:

I am going to be reviewing both the genesis and the conduct of intelligence activities directed at the Trump campaign during 2016. And a lot of this has already been investigated and a substantial portion of it has been investigated and is being investigated by the office of (inspector general). But one of the things that I want to do is pull together all of the information from the various investigations that have gone on including on the Hill and in the (Justice) Department and see if there are any remaining questions [need] to be addressed.

Democrats hear the clock ticking and just as a snake will strike when threatened, they have declared war on the Attorney General. By now, each 2020 presidential candidate and most senior officials have either called for Barr’s resignation or his recusal. Even those Democrats who believe they are at arms length, may find themselves within reach.

Rush Limbaugh addressed this in his radio show on Thursday. He said Democrats are scared to death of the “investigation of the investigation.” That fear is warranted. Limbaugh said, “They heard a death knell.” He continued:

The Democratic Party is now in full meltdown…Do not make the mistake of thinking they are running things, that they are in control of things. In fact, it’s so bad that the drive-by media is getting all over Nadler and some of the other Democrats for being ineffective and not being able to pull off what the media wants them to pull off in terms of going out there and getting Trump. It is breathtaking to behold this.

What is underway here is an ongoing effort to try to discredit William Barr from this day forward on anything he might find, anything he might say, anything that he might report. Pelosi confirmed it for me today when we heard that she had a private meeting with the Democrat caucus and she openly accused Barr of having lied to Congress and that that is a crime.

Limbaugh said what confirmed it for him was a “random act of journalism” at TheHill.com entitled “Democrats Hope Attacks Will Sideline William Barr.” The article concedes that “the Democrats are stepping up their attacks on Barr in order to try to sideline him from making future decisions about investigating the investigation.”

Fox News contributor Marc Thiessen appeared Tuesday on “Special Report” and made similar remarks. He said:

That’s exactly what they’re doing. Now we pivot. We’ve been investigating Donald Trump for the collusion hoax for two years, and now we’re gonna find out how this got started. And it’s gonna start with the Obama administration, and it’s gonna… If they think Donald Trump looked pretty bad from the Mueller report ’cause he — because of his cooperation, because he allowed — McGahn to spend 30 hours with — with the special counsel, we’re gonna have the same thing happen on the other shoe and the other foot now.

We have House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler who says he won’t read the Mueller report until he receives an unredacted copy, so he hasn’t read it. He doesn’t want members of Congress to question Barr, because he knows they haven’t read it.

And this is why he is insisting that the staff lawyers ask the questions. Quite simply, they want to set up a perjury trap for Barr.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi answered questions from the press following her meeting with the Democratic caucus on Thursday. She said:

It wasn’t about who wrote the letter and how he characterized the letter. That’s interesting, but what is deadly serious about it is the attorney general of the United States of America was not telling the truth to the Congress of the United States. That’s a crime. Articles of impeachment for President Nixon, Article 3 was that he ignored the subpoenas of Congress, that he did not honor the subpoenas of Congress. This is very, very serious.

All of these comments say one thing. The Democrats are scared to death.

Kimberly Strassel has written an excellent column in today’s Wall Street Journal entitled “AG Barr Gets Attacked Because His Probe Endangers Powerful People” about their fear. She writes “The only thing uglier than an angry Washington is a fearful Washington. And fear is what’s driving this week’s blitzkrieg of Attorney General William Barr.”

She points out that Democrats have nothing to object to. “The attorney general delivered the transparency Democrats demanded. He quickly released a lightly redacted report, which portrayed the president in a negative light.” Strassel writes:

Some of this is frustration. Democrats foolishly invested two years of political capital in the idea that Mr. Mueller would prove President Trump had colluded with Russia, and Mr. Mueller left them empty-handed. Some of it is personal. Democrats resent that Mr. Barr won’t cower or apologize for doing his job. Some is bitterness that Mr. Barr is performing like a real attorney general, making the call against obstruction-of-justice charges rather than sitting back and letting Democrats have their fun with Mr. Mueller’s obstruction innuendo.

But most of it is likely fear. Mr. Barr made real news in that Senate hearing, and while the press didn’t notice, Democrats did. The attorney general said he’d already assigned people at the Justice Department to assist his investigation of the origins of the Trump-Russia probe. He said his review would be far-reaching – that he was obtaining details from congressional investigations, from the ongoing probe by the department’s inspector general, Michael Horowitz, and even from Mr. Mueller’s work. Mr. Barr said the investigation wouldn’t focus only on the fall 2016 justifications for secret surveillance warrants against Trump team members but would go back months earlier.

Streusel also noted that Democrats were especially nervous about Barr’s concern over their heavy reliance on the discredited Steele dossier. She sums up:

Do not underestimate how many powerful people in Washington have something to lose from Mr. Barr’s probe. Among them: Former and current leaders of the law-enforcement and intelligence communities. The Democratic Party pooh-bahs who paid a foreign national (Mr. Steele) to collect information from Russians and deliver it to the FBI. The government officials who misused their positions to target a presidential campaign. The leakers. The media. More than reputations are at risk. Revelations could lead to lawsuits, formal disciplinary actions, lost jobs, even criminal prosecution.

The attacks on Mr. Barr are first and foremost an effort to force him out, to prevent this information from coming to light until Democrats can retake the White House in 2020. As a fallback, the coordinated campaign works as a pre-emptive smear, diminishing the credibility of his ultimate findings by priming the public to view him as a partisan.

We have to stop using the criminal-justice process as a political weapon,” Mr. Barr said Wednesday. The line didn’t get much notice, but that worthy goal increasingly looks to be a reason Mr. Barr accepted this unpleasant job. Stopping this abuse requires understanding how it started. The liberal establishment, including journalists friendly with it, doesn’t want that to happen, and so has made it a mission to destroy Mr. Barr. The attorney general seems to know what he’s up against, and remains undeterred. That’s the sort of steely will necessary to right the ship at the Justice Department and the FBI.

The Financial Times’ Kadhim Shubber weighed in on the assault against Barr. He wrote:

We are seeing a classic power move against him. The Democrats and its supplicant media outlets have fired up the hysteria machine that manufactures panic, outrage, and smears to create an overwhelming atmosphere of crisis. In perfect harmony they bray on and on, repeating lies and accusations often enough that they become accepted as truth, creating a false narrative that is reinforced by an endless loop of media promotion.

The goal is to remove Barr, or better yet, simply neuter him by forcing him to recuse himself from all matters relating to the president. This path worked very well with Sessions. He quickly rolled over for the hysteria mob and abdicated his duties. Barr won’t be such an easy mark.

We can be sure that as Barr comes closer and closer to the truth, the attacks against him will escalate. In an interview with Fox News’ Catherine Herridge, President Trump said he would be releasing the FISA applications and related documents within “weeks or months.” Inspector General Michael Horowitz’s report should be complete within a month. And, judging from Barr’s recent remarks, he’s been busy at the DOJ. If I were a Democrat, I’d be in full panic mode right now.

The post When Cornered, One Can Choose Either To Surrender or To Strike; The Democrats Have Chosen To Strike appeared first on RedState.

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BREAKING: Jobs Report Blows Away Expectations, Jobless Rate Hits 49-Year Low

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In this Monday, Feb. 25, 2013 photo, a clerk poses for a photo showing cash in the register at Vidler’s 5 & 10 store in East Aurora, N.Y. (AP Photo/David Duprey)

While economists were predicting a meager 190,000 in jobs growth this month, the economy had different plans.

Payrolls jumped up by 263,000, and the jobless rate it a 49-year low of 3.6 percent. The hourly earnings growth stayed at 3.2 percent.

Here’s more from Bloomberg:

The surprising robustness follows months of broad labor market strength. While the expansion is poised to become the nation’s longest on record at midyear, economists expect a deceleration this year even after a strong first quarter.

Revisions for February and March added 16,000 more jobs than previously reported, while the three-month average fell to 169,000.

It’s an overall good sign for the economy, and politically it bodes well for Trump, who has picked up nearly two dozen Democratic challengers ahead of his 2020 re-election bid. While many claim to be running on the virtue of providing more for the middle and lower class, the numbers from this report show that Trump may have the upper hand in that debate, too (emphasis mine).

Average hourly earnings rose 0.2 percent from the prior month after a revised 0.2 percent rise in the prior period. Wages for production and nonsupervisory workers accelerated to a 3.4 percent annual pace, signaling gains for lower-paid employees.

The job creation appears to be coming in the form of construction and health care, while retail jobs actually fell.

The payroll gains were somewhat uneven, with construction, health care, and professional and business services posting gains while retail employment fell by 12,000 for a third- straight decline.

Construction payrolls climbed by 33,000, the most since January, as manufacturing employment rose by 4,000. Factory employment was unchanged in the prior month after a previously reported drop.

But there is one warning for President Trump, who has been calling on the Federal Reserve to lower interest rates:

While the historically tight labor market has pushed companies to raise pay, inflation appears largely subdued, as the fatter paychecks don’t show any sign of fueling faster price gains.

At the same time, the average workweek got slightly shorter, boosting average hourly pay. The average for all private employees decreased to 34.4 hours, from 34.5 hours.

Raising the rates is a sign that the economy is strong. Lowering them shows economic weakness. The Fed knows this, so they’ve resisted his call to drop rates. However, with two nominees for the Fed withdrawing their names, Trump may now be looking for someone more in line with his train of thought on rates. Even if it risks the inflation that this report says is dissipating.

Pessimism in the marketplace appears to have vanished, and there are plenty of reasons to be hopeful about the American economy.

The post BREAKING: Jobs Report Blows Away Expectations, Jobless Rate Hits 49-Year Low appeared first on RedState.

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Trump Hits All Time High On Handling of the Economy in Latest CNN Poll

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It’s the economy, stupid. That’s the old axiom that President Trump is banking on still being true and so far he’s in good position on that front.

CNN put out a new poll yesterday, no doubt with much pain involved, showing that Trump has hit an all time high on his handling of the economy. In total 56% of the country approve while just 41% disapprove.

Who are the people who disapprove here? I ask that sincerely. How can you disapprove of near record low unemployment, exploding growth far outpacing expectations, and the first real wage growth we’ve seen in over a decade? What’s not to like exactly?

It goes to show how silly politics can be. I guarantee you that those same 41% all approved of Obama’s economy when it was stuck at 1% growth and wages were stagnant. There are actually people out there who’d rather suffer than admit someone in the opposing party did something right.

Typically, economic health is a good indicator of a President’s re-election chances. This is Donald Trump though so the normal rules can probably be thrown out the window. How well he’s able to stay on message in promoting the current great economy will make or break him. A little discipline will go a long way.

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In Louisiana, A Case Study In The Death Of Good Local Media

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CREDIT: Brandon Morse, copyright RedState.com.

Those of you who pay attention to the state of the media in your own states may recognize this story. It is a story that could have happened in your state, or maybe it’s happening there like it is here.

Here in Louisiana, the biggest newspaper in Baton Rouge, The Advocate, has opened up two bureaus in other parts of south Louisiana. The first is in Lafayette, where I live, and the Acadiana Advocate has spent years competing with the locally-owned Gannett paper, The Daily Advertiser. In New Orleans, the New Orleans Advocate has had to compete with the long-running Times-Picayune, the preeminent paper of the Big Easy.

They competed, that is, until yesterday, when it was announced that The Advocate‘s owners purchased the Times-Picayune.

Now, these two papers didn’t just compete in New Orleans. They competed in Baton Rouge, the state’s capital. Covering state government was a competitive business between the two. But now, the competition is over. The Advocate won. I’ve talked with quite a few people who have flat out said that The Advocate‘s owners’ plan all along was to become THE state’s media.

The problem is, The Advocate isn’t just THE state’s media. It has worked tirelessly under Democratic governor John Bel Edwards to become THE state media.

The Advocate‘s coverage of politics in Baton Rouge has always been one-sided, but the fact that they had to compete with the Times-Picayune did force them to try and create a better product. Without that competition, they are going to feel very little need to compete and create that product. They will have the confidence to keep going as they had been, and to go at it harder. After all, they won.

Now, Gannett has a not-insignificant presence in the state, but their closest paper is here in Lafayette, about an hour away from the state capitol – unless there’s a wreck on I-10 (as there often are), in which case it’s more like an hour and a half.

Gannett is also dealing with company-wide cuts, staff-layoffs, and some competitive poaching (the Lafayette paper lost a huge chunk of its editorial staff to the Acadiana Advocate‘s newsroom). They currently don’t appear to have the manpower to compete at that level. They are restructuring how they are running their papers at a regional level. They can get a general state capitol reporter, but they can’t have a full staff ready to go there and work it day in and day out, especially during legislative sessions.

Does this scenario seem familiar to you?

Local newspapers are struggling. They have smaller budgets and smaller newsrooms. A recovering economy will help them stay afloat as advertisers get more confident about advertising, but they are struggling. Television and radio stations have to produce newscasts, run shows, and juggle several different media at once. They don’t have time to just sit there and work on their digital print content all day. So, they can’t compete with the level of reporting that newspapers do.

There is less and less competition in this marketplace, and there are fewer and fewer voices we can read and listen to in order to get an idea of what’s going on. As much as we declare the media a liberal institution, they still perform a necessary job. When you have fewer people doing that job, the quality of that product will get worse and worse over time.

If you aren’t already, I do encourage you to support your local media as much as you can. You can’t replace them once they’re gone. Smaller local outlets tend to be a lot better than regional or national outlets in covering the issues important to you. They are the experts in your area. That’s why you need them.

The national press gets huffy when you don’t show them respect and treat them like the defenders of democracy they believe they are. But in reality, it’s the death of the small media that will hurt democracy the most.

The post In Louisiana, A Case Study In The Death Of Good Local Media appeared first on RedState.

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