LRC Blog

Western Suicide: Cause and Effect

The tradition of the West is embodied in the Great Conversation that began in the dawn of history and that continues to the present day. Whatever the merits of other civilizations in other respects, no civilization is like that of the West in this respect. No other civilization can claim that its defining characteristic is a dialogue of this sort. No dialogue in any other civilization can compare with that of the West in the number of great works of the mind that have contributed to this Dialogue. The Spirit of Western Civilization is the spirit of inquiry. Its dominant element is the Logos. Nothing is to remain undiscussed. Everyone is to speak his mind. No proposition is to be left unexamined.

Robert Maynard Hutchins, The Great Conversation: The Substance of a Liberal Education.

Logos is an ancient Greek term. It means reason as expressed in human speech. The Greeks believed reason to be the controlling principle in an orderly, harmonious universe (cosmos).

The faculties of reason (conceptual thought) and language (propositional speech) are what distinguish human beings from other creatures.

Accordingly, man is described as “the rational animal.” As philosopher Mortimer Adler points out in his book, The Difference of Man and the Difference It Makes:

. . . man is the only talking, the only naming, declaring or questioning, affirming or denying, the only arguing, agreeing or disagreeing, the only discursive animal.

Philosopher/novelist Ayn Rand develops this idea further in her book, For the New Intellectual:

Man’s mind is his basic tool of survival. Life is given to him, survival is not. His body is given to him, its content is not. To remain alive, he must act, and before he can act he must know the nature and purpose of his action. He cannot obtain his food without a knowledge of food, and the way to obtain it. He cannot dig a ditch – or build a cyclotron – without a knowledge of his aim and of the means to achieve it. To remain alive, he must think.

But to think is an act of choice . . . Reason does not work automatically; thinking is not a mechanical process; the connections of logic are not made by instinct. The function of your stomach, lungs, or heart is automatic; the function of your mind is not. In any hour and issue of your life, you are free to escape from your nature, from the fact that reason is your means of survival – so that for you, who are a human being, the question ‘to be or not to be’ is the question ‘to think or not to think.’

Thinking is man’s only basic virtue, from which all the others proceed. And his basic vice, the source of all his evils, is that nameless act which all of you practice, but struggle never to admit: the act of blanking out, the willful suspension of one’s consciousness, the refusal to think – not blindness, but the refusal to see; not ignorance, but the refusal to know. It is the act of unfocusing your mind and inducing an inner fog to escape the responsibility of judgment . . . Non-thinking is an act of annihilation, a wish to negate existence, an attempt to wipe out reality.

Human beings are capable of abstract thought, the transcendence of their immediate environment, and the emancipation from the perpetual present.

In one of the most important books of the 20th Century, Tragedy and Hope: A History of the World in Our Time, historian Carroll Quigley elaborates on this crucial idea of abstraction:   (more…)

9:59 am on June 17, 2018

Hoppe’s Argument From Argument

From: R
Sent: Friday, June 15, 2018 3:05 PM
To: walter block
Subject:

Walter: I have one question: the following is, I think, a fair summary of Hoppe’s argument (one accepted by both you and Murray).

Argumentation ethics argues the non-aggression principle is a presupposition of argumentation and so cannot be rationally denied in discourse.

while it is certainly better than evoking natural rights, which are a total myth that cannot be demonstrated to exist, why do you think it provides a foundation for libertarianism? it seems to me that at best, it says that NAP can’t be rejected in discourse. but can’t one be a libertarian without engaging in discourse about it. e.g. you could just live your life as a libertarian (which is what i do, as best i can) and simply not discuss it at all (personally, i prefer to discuss theoretical physics) in which case it’s necessary to provide another justification for libertarians (i justify it – to myself of course, since i don’t discuss it – as being most compatible with my psychological disposition). that has been perfectly adequate to me. R

Dear R: I regard my friend Hans Hoppe as one of the most gifted libertarian theoreticians not only now actively writing, but in all of recorded history. In my view, his argumentation ethics is one of the many jewels in his crown. I not only think it provides a foundation for libertarianism, I think it provides the very best foundation for libertarianism now available to us, thanks to him.

You are quite right that one can be “a libertarian without engaging in discourse about it…” All one need do is live according to the non aggression principle. However, Hans demonstrates that the only way to JUSTIFY a philosophical principle is through discourse. And that therefore those who argue against libertarianism engage in a performative contradiction, since arguing implies adherence to the NAP.

Here is a bibliography on this issue:

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12:18 pm on June 16, 2018

Why Is Washington Backing Saudi Starvation Policy In Yemen?

1:41 pm on June 15, 2018

The Left’s Hidden Agenda

Here are two powerful expose’ articles from The Spectator describing what has been the real hidden agenda of the Left in the aftermath of the collapse of Marxism/Leninism in the Soviet Union: Marxism didn’t die. It’s alive and well and living among us, and As the left surges back, Marxism’s bloody legacy is covered up.

Out of this understanding came Eurocommunism, through which the continent’s communists sidled back into the democratic and anti-Stalinist left, just as Soviet power vanished from the earth. It was and remains amazing just how little this new trend cares about once huge issues such as nationalisation and state control. It is, as David Aaronovitch’s old comrade pointed out all those years ago, much more interested in sex, in more ways than one. It will cheerfully see the railways privatised, as long as childhood is nationalised, lifelong marriage is made obsolete, Christianity and patriotism are disempowered and defeated, borders are flung wide, and education becomes a mechanism for enforcing egalitarianism.

People in the West seldom knew just how interested the old Eastern bloc communist regimes also were in these cultural and moral objectives. The communists loathed lasting Christian marriage and mistrusted all private life. They vigorously promoted abortion and easy divorce. I will always recall, one dark Moscow afternoon, finding a statue to the frightful Pavlik Morozov, whom Soviet children were taught to worship because he had betrayed his parents to the party. If you knew what it represented, it was a bit like stumbling across a graven image of Moloch.

Épater le bourgeois (shock the middle classes) has been the revolutionary rallying cry of the Left in the cultural war against Judeo-Christian morality and the nuclear family for well over a hundred years.

It lies at the epicenter of Modernism, Marxism, Fascism, National Socialism, Feminism, Progressivism, Environmentalism, and Homosexualism.

10:06 am on June 15, 2018

The Horrible Effects of Drone Strikes

On U.S. drone operators. But of course, at least they are still alive–unlike their victims.

7:49 pm on June 14, 2018

What’s the Best Way to Promote Liberty?

What’s the Best Way to Promote Liberty?
From: J
Sent: Friday, May 18, 2018 12:31 PM
To: Walter Block
Subject: Article for your critique

Good morning, I am passing on an article a friend of mine, and cohost of my radio show Patriots Lament, posted today, if you care to or have time, I would appreciate your comments/critique of it. Thanks.
http://patriotslament.blogspot.com/2018/05/a-message-to-libertarians-past-and.html?m=1

J

Dear J: I disagree with this view, one that Leonard Read offered too. I think we need do more than live good personal lives in order to promote liberty. Who are the two people who converted more people to libertarianism than anyone else? Which two stood head and shoulders over all others in promoting liberty – at least in terms of mass conversions? They are of course Ron Paul and Ayn Rand. The former has lead an exemplary personal life. The latter, not so much, at least not in traditional terms. If the best way to promote liberty were by living a good personal life, then Ayn Rand could never be mentioned in this regard. (Of course, Murray Rothbard and Ludwig von Mises promoted liberty quite a bit too, but not, mainly, through mass conversions. Their contribution was in other directions).

6:57 pm on June 14, 2018

Robert Francis Kennedy


Shown only once, this episode of A&E Investigative Reports makes the case for CIA involvement in the Assassination of Robert F Kennedy. Here are other items of related interest: here, here, here, and here.

2:37 pm on June 14, 2018

Trump’s Triumph

Many headlines question Trump’s triumph in Singapore, unreasonably so. Petty minds are at work who are paid to create stories, and stories always have conflict as a central element. If there is no conflict, the pundits imagine it. This is why fake news is not news but a form of entertainment. Besides, the audience for anti-Trump material is large.

The media belittle Trump’s accomplishment in countless petty ways, but they’ll soon be forgotten as they go on to the next concocted story. Trump will be remembered when they are long forgotten.

The big picture is that Trump outfoxed China. Trump broke the ice. He broke a frozen situation in Korea that favored China and its erstwhile ally, North Korea. China is trying to act as if it was critical in this movement, because China wants to hold North Korea in its sphere of economic and political influence. However, a united Korea stands like a united Vietnam as a stopping point for Chinese pretensions to project its power beyond its borders. Trump’s agreement with Kim signals the blocking of China and a limit to Chinese hegemony over its neighbors, and that is a major accomplishment for the U.S. strategy toward China.

The big picture is that in Singapore Trump and Kim furthered a peace process that began on May 10, 2017 when the newly-elected Moon made peace with North Korea a priority. Other steps have been taken during the past year, including meetings between Moon and Kim. The Singapore Agreement is yet another step that keeps the momentum of this process going. Hypercritical media comments and questions about the latest summit ignore or miss the big picture, which is that it is part of a stepwise process. This involves discovery by all sides of what can be done and invention of ways to do it, all embedded in a complex situation that involves neighbors like China and Japan who also have interests in the region. Trump’s approach was to endorse a general framework, and that’s sensible because the discovery-invention process takes a lot of time and dickering. Both sides retained flexibility through this lean approach.

Cold War and post-Cold War warriors who remain outspoken and influential in Washington did not succeed in getting their way with North Korea, after decades of trying. The situation threatened to come to open war. Trump has postponed that day and opened up the opportunity to make sure that that day never arrives. This is a major accomplishment and triumph.

The deal is not done, and Trump knows it. His followup remarks have been open and frank concerning how matters can change as time passes. Trump unfroze the untenable situation created by his predecessors. Kim, Moon and Trump will now have to keep doing that by concrete steps such as Trump’s calling for a halt to joint war games with South Korea.

9:59 pm on June 13, 2018

Cesar Chavez saves workers from being poisoned. He’s a hero? Part II

From: S
Sent: Wednesday, June 13, 2018 4:22 AM
To: wblock@loyno.edu
Subject: Caesar Chavez

Though your analysis of B’s question is consistent with principle and logical, it seems to me there is another possibility—the spraying of the field while workers are present could indeed be a tort, but one that the farmer can get away with because he knows the workers will not or cannot take him to court over it. In other words, the workers do not consent contractually to the spraying, but they acquiesce in it for reasons of their own, just as subjects in a State acquiesce in its various oppressions, because they believe themselves unable to prevent them, and likely to be more greviously harmed if they try.

I don’t think one can know in a specific case which alternative applies without careful investigation, and every case could be different. But that is what juries are for. In a free society it would be much easier for the farm workers to take the employer to court, and the jury would be well instructed in its rights and responsibilities (and even more so if the jury is itself professional).. S

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6:08 pm on June 13, 2018

Cesar Chavez Saves Workers From Being Poisoned. He’s a Hero?

Cesar Chavez saves workers from being poisoned. He’s a hero?

From: B
Sent: Monday, April 23, 2018 12:37 PM
To: wblock@loyno.edu
Subject: Migrant farm workers

Dear Prof. Block,

Recently, I had an interesting encounter which I would like you to help me assess in light of our common views on libertarianism.

Last week I attended an accepted college student day with my daughter at the University of Wyoming. (I note as an aside that my daughter made it clear to me that she was not interested in studying economics in college, and therefore she did not follow up on your generous invitation from last year to apply to study with you at Loyola.)

At the college event, we met the parents of an accepted student from California. Both the parents (and their parents as well) had been migrant farm workers from Mexico who eventually became naturalized citizens to the United States. The parents that I met said that they had started at a young age working in California vineyards picking grapes for both domestic consumption and export. They indicated that while picking grapes, the fields were often sprayed with pesticides from the air, even as the farm workers were working in the fields. They said that many of the workers would emerge with blisters and rashes on their arms from the poisonous chemicals. They credited Cesar Chavez and California legislators with eliminating the practice of spraying fields that would expose farm workers to this hazard (and also outlawing younger children from working in the fields).

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9:43 pm on June 12, 2018

Who Won At The Summit? Trump or Kim?

12:54 pm on June 12, 2018

More Targets of FDR’s Spiteful Revenge


In addition to Ron Unz’s important article re-published today at LRC, American Pravda: Our Great Purge of the 1940s, here are two other valuable pieces detailing Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s spiteful revenge and vindictive determination to vilify, silence, and destroy his critics, here and here.

9:38 am on June 12, 2018

Trump Should Share the Nobel Peace Prize

Nobel Prizes have been influenced by the affections and peculiarities of this and the last century, but let that not prevent the next peace prize from being awarded to three deserving men: Kim Jong Un, Moon Jae-in and Donald Trump. Obama’s prize was for a speech. Trump’s will be for a deed, if the prize is to mean anything at all. There will be sniping and worse emanating from the angry left in media and entertainment, many members of which have been entirely unable to see Trump as anything but some sort of grotesque monster and throwback, lacking in every department imaginable, not even a caricature but a Mr. Hyde or Dorian Gray portrait.

Trump’s agenda includes peace as a major objective, and he has brought his own methods to the presidency to achieve it with success. If North Korean peace arrives and the pact is fulfilled over the next few years, new possibilities for peace arise in other regions of the world. With Kim and Moon, Trump has now created options for resolving or alleviating relations with Iran, Syria, Afghanistan, Russia and China.

Trump has outflanked and disarmed his critics. Robert De Niro may as well beat his head against the wall. Trump’s win is our win. It measurably gives him the power to extend the gains for peace. Trump’s modus operandi includes gaining independence of action which translates into political power and influence, that is, a capacity to move in new political directions. He has achieved credible independence by such actions as withdrawing from the TPP, withdrawing from the Iran nuclear deal, imposing tariffs, standing up to the media, and standing up to the G-7. His blunt talk is another key component of his method.

How well can Trump exploit the new configuration of political forces that he has helped create? That remains to be seen. There are downsides as well as upsides, there are pitfalls of many kinds, and there are opposing forces, so that worldwide peace is not an immediate prospect.

It should not be difficult to bring Russia back into reasonable relations with the U.S. Trump has already launched that effort and alluded to accepting Crimean annexation as a fait accompli. Iran seems a tough nut to crack, but the Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who is very intelligent and articulate, has already clarified Iran’s position on Israel. He has shrewdly suggested a referendum, which is a democratic device. This in no way whatsoever resolves the key issues, but it at least shows a desire to address those issues in a peaceful way. Syria presents a picture of divided U.S. policies. On the one hand, Trump has stated he wants out; on the other hand, Mattis says withdrawal is a strategic blunder; but this seems to be part of jockeying toward a political redrawing of Syria’s map. Peace and disentanglement of the U.S. have no clear roadmap in other regions such as Afghanistan and Yemen, although the Taliban and the Afghan government have had a three-day truce, unobserved by the Islamic State. How to deal with growing military strength of China and its pressuring of its neighbors, such as Vietnam, is yet another challenge.

The inherent difficulty of a policy of peace through U.S. strength is that the state’s power will be misused, such as by attempts to create peace by: making war, removing dictators, controlling weapons buildups, installing democracies, nation-building, securing pipeline routes, maintaining dollar hegemony, and securing a favored nation. Peace among states has to be a limited concept. It cannot be transformed into the goal of unlimited security without endangering peace. Peace in a world of states means no war between two states or among several. It does not mean securing peace within every state. It does not mean removing every threat to peace.

In the past 24 years, under Clinton, Bush and Obama, the U.S. misused its power egregiously in one war after another. Trump is moving in a different direction. However, there is no guarantee that he will not himself misuse his power, and we already can find instances of that. Future presidents of our country and leaders of other states face the same dangers and temptations to misuse power. What can change that? At a minimum, what would help is a clearly understood non-aggression ethos that is backed up by a clear understanding of self-defense and its limits. No state and no non-state organization should believe in its right to either preventive or preemptive war. The rights of both secession and revolution should be clarified. Economic extortion by means of political-military threats should be seen clearly as aggressive acts. The necessity to the peace of private property and its clear definitions and boundaries needs constantly to be emphasized. A peace ethos draws significantly from the libertarian ethos.

9:08 am on June 12, 2018

One of the Most Important Articles Published in Years

Ron Unz’s American Pravda: Our Great Purge of the 1940s,is one of the most important articles published in years. Brilliantly and dispassionately composed, it deserves to go viral with the widest possible readership. I strongly urge you share it with family, friends, and colleagues — particularly younger readers. The author, in the most disinterested and reflective manner, describes his honest search for that illusive intangible thing called historical truth, and catalogs the obstacles, from past eras and the present, which have been erected by establishment elites and their court intellectuals and servitors in academia and the mainstream media. After almost fifty years on a similar quest for the holy grail of historical truth, many of the poignant descriptions of the long forgotten persons and seminal books he discusses have become well known to me. But there are generations who, for many reasons outlined in his piece, are not aware of these pioneering heroic individuals who spoke truth to power. Here are some of their courageous works: here, here, here, and here.

1:22 am on June 12, 2018

My Upcoming Public Speeches

Dear Friends:

See below for a list of my upcoming public speeches. If you live in these cities (Las Vegas, New Orleans, Auburn Al, NYC) or are visiting them while I’m there, please consider joining me at these events.

I never thought there could be an actual debate as a libertarian gathering concerning Murray Rothbard’s overwhelmingly excellent and magnificent contribution to our philosophy (it is not for nothing that he is properly known as “Mr. Libertarian), but, evidently, I thought wrong.

Another note: my friend Tim Moen, leader of the LP of Canada, has threatened to “spank” me in our debate.

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6:14 pm on June 11, 2018

Far-Left Hate Group Wildly Cheers Foul-Mouthed F-Bomb Dropper

At the not-so-tony-“Tony” Awards show in –where else — Hollywood.  These Bernie Sanders/Hillary Clinton/Communism lovers, who are supposed to be so educated, articulate, and talented (so they endlessly tell us with all their “awards” shows), are so ignorant as to be completely incapable of anything but shouting obscenities, taking pictures of themselves with a “severed head” of the president, etc.  They wildly applaud each other for such antics while giving themselves little gold trophies, and then go on to the next x-rated rant.  It’s about the level of manners and sophistication of most of their movies, by the way.   No wonder so many people think of “cinema” as being a combination of “sin” and “enema.”

2:33 pm on June 11, 2018

The Political Elites of the Peoples’ Republic of San Francommunism . . .

. . . have ganged up on one of their own, Angela Alioto, the author of their “sanctuary city” law and current mayoral candidate, because she wants to exclude illegal aliens who have committed violent felonies.  Tucker Carlson exposes these haters of human civilization.

10:52 am on June 11, 2018

Former CIA Officer Exposes the Shadow Government


Part 1 of 3

9:45 am on June 11, 2018

Property Abandonment

Property Abandonment
From: E
Sent: Monday, May 28, 2018 11:53 PM
To: Walter Block
Subject: homesteading question

Hi Walter,

Someone asked me a question, claiming it seems silly that someone would have the right to claim a parcel of land, work it, and then abandon it – and yet it would remain theirs for eternity – presumably this would be potential wealth taken out of the stock available means for future generations or others to develop for their best use value.

I know you have dealt with this in the past I’m just having trouble finding the best source. If it isn’t too terribly inconvenient would you point me in the right direction… to the right essay(s) or books on this. Best, E
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8:55 pm on June 10, 2018

Trump Shakes Up G-7 and the New World Order

Beside issues and substance, there exists another aspect of G-7 meetings; and that is the realm of the ethos of G-7, its prevailing tendency, its spirit. The men and women at these meetings rarely get along with one another deep down, but they paper it over. They deem themselves the masters and governors of the industrialized world. The G-7 comes across as stuffy, controlling, manipulative, self-satisfied, hypocritical, elitist, arrogant, snobby and socialistic.

Against this background, Trump is a blast! He’s the outsider, from another world altogether than the political. He doesn’t mind breaking through the fake reserve and unity of these meetings. In fact, he wants to shake them up to achieve his own aims.

It was great to hear Trump go completely against the G-7 grain before the meeting even began by suggesting that Russia should have been included. He went on to use the tariff issue as a wedge to suggest that the goal should be zero tariffs, industry subsidies and interference with trade by all the G-7 members. Imagine that, each country no longer catering to its domestic agricultural interests. Break down the rigid status quo, Trump demands, even if it takes a “leader” actually risking position and power by standing up against domestic interests. At the end, Trump retracted his endorsement of the G-7’s final joint statement! Make our day, Donald.

The Trump way to get at the substance is to shake up the ethos. Trump has just got done shaking up the insufferable socialist elite ethos of the G-7. Politicians rule by the image of holding things together at the top. Trump challenges complacency. The G-7, like the EU, has the peculiar character of smothering and stultifying those in its grip. Endless rules and bureaucracy, bureaucracy and rules, stretch into the eternal future in a sea of crises demanding evermore control. This is the free world?? The windows need to be opened, doors unlocked and access to fresh air and movement created. That’s what Trump is doing, and it leads away from the prospect of a rigid world government. Trump is shaking up the new world order, making it the old world order. He is doing this constantly and on many fronts.

9:27 am on June 10, 2018

How Mencken Invented Noir


I call your attention to this fascinating article in The Guardian: Dames, detectives and dope: why we still love hardboiled crime — As political corruption, violence and gender politics gain fresh relevance, pulp noir is attracting new voices and audiences, giving the gumshoe a 21st-century reboot. It puts forth the idea that journalist and publisher H. L. Mencken pioneered a brand new genre — the hardboiled detective story. So who was this Mencken guy? Later this literary format was transposed to the cinema as film noir.

4:50 pm on June 9, 2018

How Dare a Politician Talk about Respect and Credibility

So, Rudy Giuliani doesn’t “respect” Stormy Daniels because the business she was in entitles her “to no degree of giving” her “credibility any weight.” Rudy doesn’t “respect a porn star the way” he respects “a career woman or a woman of substance or a woman who … isn’t going to sell her body for sexual exploitation.”

Instead of making an honest living like Stormy Daniels, Rudy has been a politician for most of his life. In other words, he was the lowest of the low. He was someone whom no one should ever respect. He was someone who had no credibility. He, like all politicians, sold himself for cash, gifts, favors, or campaign contributions.

7:54 pm on June 7, 2018

Starving Troops?

From a reader:

I was buying a coffee at an airport this week, and the price was $4.94. I handed the woman behind the counter a $5 note, and she asked me if I’d like “to round up, to donate the balance to feed the soldiers who come through the airport.” I told her “No, I’d rather you keep the change.” I had three immediate thoughts. First, US soldiers are already the recipients of a portion of my income taken without my consent; why would I want to voluntarily give up more of it for their benefit? Second, US soldiers go abroad to murder people (or provide support to those who do), and a little starvation might throw them off their game, thereby benefiting humanity. Third, who knew the troops were starving?

7:45 pm on June 7, 2018

John McCain: War Criminal

I see a biography of John McCain has recently been published titled John McCain: American Maverick. It ought to be called John McCain: War Criminal. Here is why.

7:15 pm on June 7, 2018

Six Against Trump: Who Wins At G-7 Summit?

1:33 pm on June 7, 2018

Spygate Is for Real

A barrage of denials of Spygate has appeared ever since Trump first used the term. Criticism of Trump and Spygate-denial can’t make it go away, however, because it’s real. Stefan Halper was the main spy inserted into the Trump campaign by the FBI and CIA. The New York Times revealed his name and role, calling him an informant.

Next week, the Department of Justice is going to provide eight members of Congress with documents they haven’t seen before. This won’t help the case for Spygate because 7 of the 8 are unsympathetic to the case for Spygate, truth and transparency, including the likes of Ryan, McConnell, Schumer, Pelosi and Schiff. Only Rep. Nunes among the 8 has shown a will to get to the bottom of the deep state interference in the election.

Spygate is for real:

“The entire point of ‘spygate’ is that the Obama administration paid a known FBI and CIA asset [Stefan Halper] – whose father-in-law was Ray Cline, former Deputy Director of the CIA – over $1 million in contracts through the Department of Defense. The FBI/DOJ then spied on the Trump campaign for the FBI in an unprecedented abuse of power, while also using an unverified dossier assembled by a former British spy which used high-level Kremlin sources to obtain a FISA warrant to surveil former Trump aide Carter Page.”

Let the American public see and hear hearings and testimony from a complete roster of everyone who was involved in every facet of the FBI/CIA activities that bear upon the 2016 election. This should occur after investigations have been completed that provide the basis for questioning and as part of ongoing investigations. Congressional investigators with subpoena power should be getting all the documents in unredacted form. We are nowhere near getting answers to a large number of questions that include the FBI actions with respect to Hillary Clinton’s private server, the DNC e-mails, the role of John Brennan, the decision not to prosecute Clinton, the Clinton-Lynch airport meeting, the FISA warrant, the British role, the role of tips from Estonia, and so on.

There is a cover story for Brennan and Comey, which is that they genuinely feared Russian influence upon Trump and his associates. This story falls apart upon examination. If this concern were their motivation, the right thing to have done at the time was to have alerted Trump and his people to this possibility. They didn’t do this. Instead, they spied on them and tried to entrap them. In addition, the Russian angle doesn’t explain why they favored Clinton by dropping investigation of her.

Only complete Spygate investigations and hearings can inform us as to who did what, when they did it, and why they did it.

12:23 pm on June 7, 2018

Spygate Coverup?

Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) accuses the Republican House leadership of dragging their heels in the Spygate investigation. This has been evident for months now, as there are many connections and obvious questions that haven’t been investigated. The FBI files contain memos that need to be scoured too. The House leaders are Paul Ryan (Speaker of the House), Kevin McCarthy (Majority Leader), Steve Scalise (Majority Whip) and Cathy McMorris Rodgers (House Republican Conference Chair).

There is a decided lack of aggressiveness of this investigation. One source is Paul Ryan: Evidence: “House Speaker Paul Ryan said Wednesday that Oversight Chairman Trey Gowdy was ‘accurate’ when he argued the FBI has acted appropriately in its ongoing probe of potential Russian links to the Trump campaign.” How could Ryan possibly know this? Isn’t he prejudging the case without even finding out what actually happened? If Ryan is correct, an investigation will show it; but the current evidence suggests he is wrong. By short-circuiting the investigation, Ryan is betraying the interest of the American people to learn what the FBI and CIA actually did against Trump. Another Republican who wants to stop investigating is former RNC Chair, Michael Steele: “There is no Spygate because there are no spies in the campaign.” The attitude of Steve Scalise is wishy-washy. He’s open to a special prosecutor, but his responses come across as passive, lacking push, zeal and enthusiasm to delve deeply into Spygate.

There is a kind of coverup at work here in which important Republicans do not want to bolster Trump by adding substance to Spygate, and they do not want to clean up the FBI by aggressively investigating Spygate further. They don’t want the rotten inner workings of the organization to be aired publicly. They want to preserve the FBI’s reputation. They don’t care to see Trump vindicated. The contrast with the Watergate investigation and hearings is startling.

1:33 pm on June 6, 2018

New Report: War Crimes In Raqqa. Who’s Guilty?

1:24 pm on June 6, 2018

Trump Outfoxes Leftists Once Again

The Philadelphia Eagles organization has apparently become a part of the Democratic Party and is apparently taking orders from communistic Tom Perez who is now the head of the Democrat National Committee.  Here’s the scoop on the cancellation of the White House visit by the winning superbowl team, from snippets of yesterday’s news:  As late as Friday the Philadelphia Eagles were telling Trump that some 70 players would show up.  Then they revised that number to two or three, including the mascot at the last minute.  They obviously assumed that it would be too late to cancel the event, especially since 1,000 Eagles fans had been invited, had traveled to D.C., rented hotel rooms, etc.  Therefore, they would greatly embarrass the president.

Trump smelled a rat, knew exactly what was going on, and dis-invited the team.  He held a little concert on the White House lawn for the fans instead, with all his usual flag waving and military deification.  Very funny political theater.

As a sports fan I wish these visits would all end.  Most people watch sports as, among other reasons, a means of escaping the politicization of everything that is a cancer on American society.  This started with Reagan and should end with Trump.  How nice it would be as well if every professional football game did not begin with a military spectacle with a flag the size of a football field, fighter jet flyovers, singing of anthems to the state, soldiers with guns marching in circles, etc.

7:56 am on June 6, 2018

Church of the Doomsday Bomb

Because of Roseanne Barr’s recent tweet about Valerie Jarrett, Retroplex is running the original Planet of the Apes series of movies. Taking a break last night I saw Beneath the Planet of the Apes (1970). Although the cable guide gives it 2 out of 4 stars, it was definitely more a 3.

Without revealing too many spoilers, among a lot of great anti-war themes was a hilarious parody of Peace-Through-Strength conservatives. In the 40th century, there is a Church of the Alpha-Omega Doomsday Bomb located in what was once St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City (before there was a nuclear holocaust). As can be seen in the short clip below, the symbolism of the bomb replaces that of the cross all over the church.

Also interesting is the implicit allusion to Jesus’ comment about the Pharisees (Matt 23:27) being “whitewashed tombs:” clean marble on the outside but rot on the inside. As can be seen below, the Church of the Bomb’s members are much the same in that regard.  Not seen in the clip below is this dandy from their “moral” principles: “We don’t murder our enemies, we get others to do it.”

4:14 pm on June 5, 2018