I realize that a lot of you have no interest in baseball, preferring football or basketball, though I can’t imagine why. Actually, I can better understand those who have no interest in any of the major spectator sports.
I began following baseball as a wee lad. Even though I was born in Chicago and moved to L.A. when I was six, it never entered my head to cheer for the Cubs, the White Sox or even the Dodgers. Because my favorite player was Ted Williams, I rooted for the Boston Red Sox. Fat lot of good it did them. Even when they were loaded with talent like Williams, Bobby Doerr, Johnny Pesky, Walt Dropo, Vern Stephens, Dom DiMaggio, Mel Parnell and Ellis Kinder, they couldn’t get past the Yankees. One season, back when a season was only 154 games long, Boston had three guys with 140 or more rbi’s in the lineup, Williams, Stephens and Dropo, and they still couldn’t win the American League pennant.
But, still, I stuck with them. But when they not only dumped Wade Boggs and made Dwight Evans finish his career in Baltimore, but hired a bunch of guys like Dave Kingman, Kevin Mitchell and Jose Canseco, who I thought should have had their photos on the wall of a post office, and not in a Red Sox program, I decided to jump ship after the ’95 season.
In looking for a new team to cheer for, my requirement was that it be an American League team because I like the designated hitter rule, and that I not be moving to a winner. I wanted my conscience to be clear that I wasn’t giving up on the Red Sox because I was tired of losing, but out of principle. In other words, it wasn’t I that had changed, it was Boston. It’s the same reason that Reagan and I had both given up on the Democratic party.
In looking around for a new team, I considered switching my allegiance to the Yankees because I had always liked centerfielder Bernie Williams and the new manager, Joe Torre. The clincher was that the Yankees were predicted to come in third in their division, behind Baltimore and Boston.
Of course, prior to the ‘96 season, nobody, least of all I, had any idea what a difference their rookie shortstop, Derek Jeter, would make. The idea that they would go on that year to win the World Series, and then win three more times over the next four years was as far-fetched as the idea of achieving peace in the Middle East.
I realize that some ardent baseball fans continue to despise the Yankees, but people who are conservatives should appreciate them.
For one thing, they are the only team that continues to stage Old-timers’ Games, bringing back Yankees from as long ago as the 1950s to be recognized and applauded by the sons and grandsons of the people who saw them play.
For another, during the 7th inning breaks, they bring military veterans and their families to home plate to be identified and hailed for their sacrifice. And while the recording of Kate Smith’s rendition of “God Bless America” is played over the public-address system, the cameras will scan faces in the bleachers before focusing on the badge of a New York police officer before panning down to show the face of one of New York’s finest.
The Yankees, I’ve only recently learned, also make a practice of sending flowers to the funerals of police officers all over the country who have been killed in the line of duty.
I submit that the only event that is close to being as patriotic as a Yankee ball game is a Donald Trump rally.
⦿ In case you hadn’t noticed, it’s been a week of great news. For one thing, President Trump rescued three American citizens from the clutches of the North Koreans. Next, New York’s Attorney General, Eric Schneiderman, who assumed that his bevy of lawsuits targeting the President for everything but double-parking and eating too much meatloaf, would at least get him the V.P. nomination in 2020, if not the top spot on the ballot, saw his political future vaporize in a New York minute.
Actually, it happened nearly that fast. Within three hours of Ronan Farrow’s exposé in the New Yorker hitting the streets, A.G. Schneiderman was forced to resign.
As so often happens in the wake of these various scandals, we all learn that it was an open secret that Schneiderman was a pig who not only beat up women, but that he referred to one of his victims, a Sri Lankan woman, as his “brown slave” and made her say aloud that she was his property. He also threatened his victims, warning them that if they snitched on him, he would use the authority of his office to make their lives a living hell.
In similar fashion, apparently most of the people in Harvey Weinstein’s huge circle were aware that he was a douchebag when it came to women, and only severed relations after Ronan Farrow’s New Yorker piece blew the whistle on the pig. That circle famously included such pals as liar-Hillary Clinton and nOprah Winfrey.
But feminists don’t care if their male icons behave like animals in their private lives so long as they say the right things in public. It’s that way today, and it was that way in the past when it came to the Kennedy brothers, Sen. Bob Packwood andliar-Bill Clinton.
I don’t usually give good advice to liberals, but if I were a New York notable who was up to sexual shenanigans and I spotted young Mr. Farrow lurking in the vicinity, I would hastily scribble out my letter of resignation and then grab the first flight out of LaGuardia to a country that doesn’t have an extradition treaty with the U.S.
⦿ I have decided that the main reason that 95% of blacks always vote for Democrats is that they suffer from a strange addiction to the Party. No matter how shabbily the liberals treat them and no matter how often the truth is pointed out to them, they’re as impervious to recognizing the truth as any heroin or cocaine addict looking for his next fix.
After all these years, it might even be worse than an addiction. Like the sickle-cell disease, it may have worked its way into their very DNA.
⦿ Former Secretary of State hanoi-John Kerry seems to believe he still has the job he was so ill-suited to have when he had it. But the idea that Donald Trump would walk away from the deal that hanoi-Kerry andliar-nObama made with Iran was just too much for him, so he went about trying to make sure that the Europeans wouldn’t allow his legacy to be erased with a stroke of Trump’s pen. There is a question whether his actions were illegal, but they were definitely sleazy.
It still boggles the mind that anyone who had a hand in delivering $150 billion to the leading sponsor of Islamic terrorism would want that on his resumé, but I guess nobody should expect more from someone who called his fellow Vietnam vets “baby killers” and even lied about tossing his medals over the Pentagon fence; he actually tossed someone else’s and had his own framed and eventually hung on the wall of his Senate office.
⦿ Perhaps the tawdriest aspect of the claim made by liberals that Trump should never have walked away from the nuclear deal with Iran is that other nations will no longer trust America to keep its word. They intentionally ignore the fact that when America gives its word, it does it through the Senate. They call it a treaty. The reason thatliar-nObama made it a deal was because he knew the Senate would never have voted in favor of it. Even those schlemiels aren’t that stupid and corrupt.
Frankly, when something is called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, instead of something nice and simple like the Iran Nuclear Deal, you should immediately recognize that the polical scalawags are up to no good.
⦿ As good as Trump has been for the American economy, he may have even outdone himself when it comes to the foreign stage.
Previous administrations offered gold-plated carrots --liar-Clinton with billions of dollars-worth of oil and wheat to North Korea,liar-nObama with $150 billion in cash and a lifting of economic sanctions to Iran -- and we all saw how well that worked. Our enemies got the carrots, we were left holding the bag. Or to put it a different way, they got the elevators, we got the shafts.
Donald Trump announced that America was done playing the patsy, whether to our enemies or to our trading partners. As a result, North Korea is starting to behave itself, like a spoiled brat who has finally been disciplined, and Iran is going to have to rely on Russia, whose own economy is in pretty bad shape, to keep its ugly head above water. For their part, Germany, France and Great Britain, and their socialist leaders, will have to regretfully conclude that they would rather tie their economic futures to the American dollar than to the Iranian real.
⦿ One of the amusing ironies of the Democrats insistence that Russia colluded with Trump during the 2016 elections, and that they could hardly imagine anything worse, is that Barackliar-nObama not only colluded with Bibi Netanyahu’s opponent in his last election but sent his political operatives to Israel to ensure Bibi's defeat. Like just about everything else thatliar-nObama put his hand to, he failed. But it wasn’t for lack of trying. I also suspect he used our tax dollars to pay his agents.
Considering that it was Netanyahu who recently blew the lid off the Iran deal, proving that the mullahs never intended to abide by it, you can see whyliar-nObama was so anxious to force the prime minister into retirement.
⦿ A few people submitted the following epitaph engraved on a Boot Hill tombstone: “Here Lies Lester Moore, 4 slugs from a 44, No Les, No More.”
Lisa Page and Peter Strzok, the reported FBI lovebirds, are the poster children for the next “Don’t Text and Investigate” public service ads airing soon at an FBI office near you.
Their extraordinary texting affair on their government phones has given the FBI a black eye, laying bare a raw political bias brought into the workplace that agents are supposed to check at the door when they strap on their guns and badges.
It is no longer in dispute that they held animus for Donald Trump, who was a subject of their Russia probe, or that they openly discussed using the powers of their office to “stop” Trumpfrom becoming president. The only question is whether any official acts they took in the Russia collusion probe were driven by those sentiments.
The Justice Department’s inspector general is endeavoring to answer that question.
For any American who wants an answer sooner, there are just five words, among the thousands of suggestive texts Page and Strzok exchanged, that you should read.
That passage was transmitted on May 19, 2017. “There’s no big there there,” Strzok texted.
The date of the text long has intrigued investigators: It is two days after Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein named special counsel Robert Mueller to oversee an investigation into alleged collusion between Trump and the Russia campaign.
Since the text was turned over to Congress, investigators wondered whether it referred to the evidence against the Trump campaign.
This month, they finally got the chance to ask. Strzok declined to say — but Page, during a closed-door interview with lawmakers, confirmed in the most pained and contorted way that the message in fact referred to the quality of the Russia case, according to multiple eyewitnesses.
The admission is deeply consequential. It means Rosenstein unleashed the most awesome powers of a special counsel to investigate an allegation that the key FBI officials, driving the investigation for 10 months beforehand, did not think was “there.”
By the time of the text and Mueller’s appointment, the FBI’s best counterintelligence agents had had plenty of time to dig. They knowingly used a dossier funded by Hillary Clinton’s campaign — which contained uncorroborated allegations — to persuade the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court to issue a warrant to monitor Trump campaign adviser Carter Page (no relation to Lisa Page).
They sat on Carter Page’s phones and emails for nearly six months without getting evidence that would warrant prosecuting him. The evidence they had gathered was deemed so weak that their boss, then-FBI Director James Comey, was forced to admit to Congress after being fired by Trump that the core allegation remained substantially uncorroborated.
In other words, they had a big nothing burger. And, based on that empty-calorie dish, Rosenstein authorized the buffet menu of a special prosecutor that has cost America millions of dollars and months of political strife.
The work product Strzok created to justify the collusion probe now has been shown to be inferior: A Clinton-hired contractor produced multiple documents accusing Trump of wrongdoing during the election; each was routed to the FBI through a different source or was used to seed news articles with similar allegations that further built an uncorroborated public narrative of Trump-Russia collusion. Most troubling, the FBI relied on at least one of those news stories to justify the FISA warrant against Carter Page.
That sort of multifaceted allegation machine, which can be traced back to a single source, is known in spy craft as “circular intelligence reporting,” and it’s the sort of bad product that professional spooks are trained to spot and reject.
But Team Strzok kept pushing it through the system, causing a major escalation of a probe for which, by his own words, he knew had “no big there there.”
The answer as to why a pro such as Strzok would take such action has become clearer, at least to congressional investigators. That clarity comes from the context of the other emails and text messages that surrounded the May 19, 2017, declaration.
It turns out that what Strzok and Lisa Page were really doing that day was debating whether they should stay with the FBI and try to rise through the ranks to the level of an assistant director (AD) or join Mueller’s special counsel team.
“Who gives a f*ck, one more AD like [redacted] or whoever?” Strzok wrote, weighing the merits of promotion, before apparently suggesting what would be a more attractive role: “An investigation leading to impeachment?”
Lisa Page apparently realized the conversation had gone too far and tried to reel it in. “We should stop having this conversation here,” she texted back, adding later it was important to examine “the different realistic outcomes of this case.”
A few minutes later Strzok texted his own handicap of the Russia evidence: “You and I both know the odds are nothing. If I thought it was likely, I’d be there no question. I hesitate in part because of my gut sense and concern there’s no big there there.”
So the FBI agents who helped drive the Russia collusion narrative — as well as Rosenstein’s decision to appoint Mueller — apparently knew all along that the evidence was going to lead to “nothing” and, yet, they proceeded because they thought there was still a possibility of impeachment.
Impeachment is a political outcome. The only logical conclusion, then, that congressional investigators can make is that political bias led these agents to press an investigation forward to achieve the political outcome of impeachment, even though their professional training told them it had “no big there there.”
And that, by definition, is political bias in action.
How concerned you are by this conduct is almost certainly affected by your love or hatred for Trump. But put yourself for a second in the hot seat of an investigation by the same FBI cast of characters: You are under investigation for a crime the agents don’t think occurred, but the investigation still advances because the desired outcome is to get you fired from your job.
TEA PARTY TARGET
Trump Poised To Take Control Of The Federal Reserve
The Fed doesn’t stabilize markets and money — it does the opposite
President Trump sharply criticized the Federal Reserve this week, saying interest rate increases are hurting the economy.
Trump will have the opportunity to fashion the central bank in the image he would like as he has four vacancies to fill on the board of governors.
The result could be a more politicized Fed.
President Donald Trump has multiple reasons as to why he should take control of the Federal Reserve. He will do so both because he can and because his broader policies argue that he should do so. The president is anti-overregulating American industry. The Fed is a leader in pushing stringent regulation on the nation. By raising interest rates and stopping the growth in the money supply it stands in the way of further growth in the American economy.
First, He Can
The Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve is required to have seven members. It has three. Two of the current governors were put into their position by President Trump. Two more have been nominated by the president and are awaiting confirmation by the Senate. After these two are put on the Fed’s board, the president will then nominate two more to follow them. In essence, it is possible that six of the seven Board members will be put in place by Trump.
The Federal Open Market Committee has 12 members and sets the nation’s monetary policy. Seven of the 12 are the members of the Board of Governors. Five additional are Federal Reserve district bank presidents. Other than the head of the Fed bank in New York, who was nominated by the president, the other four can only take their positions as district bank presidents if the board in Washington agrees to their hiring. One of these, the Fed Bank president in Minneapolis, Neel Kashkari, is already arguing for no further rate increases.
Following the passage of the Dodd Frank Act in July 2010, the Fed was given enormous power to regulate the banking industry. It moved quickly to implement a number of new rules. The Fed set up a system that would penalize banks that failed to obey its new rules. These rules included setting limits as to how big an individual bank could be; how much money the banks had to invest in fed funds and Treasurys as a percent of their assets; which loans were desirable and which were not; where the banks had to obtain their funding and many, many, more up to and including how much a bank could pay its investors in dividends.
These rules have meaningfully slowed bank investments in the economy (the Volcker Rule) and they have had a crippling effect on bank lending in the housing markets (other agencies have had an impact here also).
Thus, of all of the government agencies the Fed has been possibly the most restrictive. The president has already moved to correct these excesses by putting in place a new Fed Governor (Randal Quarles) to regulate the banking industry.
Three, Killing Economic Growth
In the second quarter of 2018, the growth in non-seasonally adjusted money supply (M2) has been zero. That’s right, the money supply did not grow at all. This is because the Fed is shrinking its balance sheet ultimately by $50 billion per month. In addition, the Fed has raised interest rates seven times since Q4 2015. Supposedly there are five more rate increases coming.
This is the tightest monetary policy since Paul Volcker headed the institution in the mid-1980s. It will be recalled his policies led to back-to-back recessions. Current Fed monetary policy is directly in conflict with the president’s economic goals.
Moreover, the Treasury is estimating it will pay $415 billion in interest on the federal debt in this fiscal year. A better estimate might be $450 billion if rates keep going up. There are a lot of bridges and tunnels and jobs that could be created with this money.
Then there is inflation. It is likely to rise if the Fed eases its policies. If that happens paying down the federal debt becomes easier. On a less desirable note, higher interest rates lower real estate values. Lower rates that stimulate inflation increase real estate values.
The president can and will take control of the Fed. It may be recalled when the law was written creating the Federal Reserve the secretary of the Treasury was designated as the head of the Federal Reserve. We are going to return to that era. Like it or not the Fed is about to be politicized.