At the top, I would like to express my condolences to KFAB’s Gary Sadlemyer, and all of his family and friends, after the death of his wife.
Before her death, Sadlemyer eloquently told listeners (which he didn’t have to do) why he had been gone from his seat in the station at various times recently, and expressed his love and devotion to his wife.
We send our prayers to them and for them at this difficult time.
Oh, what do commenters want to discuss?
So lets dive into the Charlottesville issue, because of course. The only local angle seems to be, “how MUCH do you hate Nazis?” (Which is pretty much a direct quote from “Monty Python’s Life of Brian”, when Brian was asked just how MUCH he hated the Romans. Brian’s response: “a LOT!”)
As much as the President is getting criticized for his statements, the one that really missed the mark is when he said, “very fine people on both sides”.
Here’s the deal: Let’s say there’s a good ole’ boy, never meanin’ no harm, who hates racism, but feels like the taking down the Robert E. Lee statue is an affront to his heritage. He feels like one of the “Dukes of Hazzard” who named their car the “General Lee”.
There’s an argument to be made there. Not necessarily a winning argument (Pat Borchers is one of many pointing out the reasoning behind so many Confederate statues). But it is an argument that can be made without it meaning that you’re automatically pro-slavery or pro-Jim Crow, or something.
But the PROBLEM with this particular march, in Charlottesville, was that it was billed as a “White Lives Matter Rally”. And then the torches came out. And then the literal battle lines were drawn between the two sides. And the whole statue thing was an afterthought.
At any of those points, if you were actually the above-referenced “good ole’ boy, never meanin’ no harm”, the literal red-flag should have told you to turn around and go home. You don’t join the march. You don’t pick up a torch. If you do, you just lost your “never meanin’ no harm” badge, and you sure as hell aren’t a “fine person”.
There were no “good Nazis” there (like a Max von Sydow in “Victory” or Sgt. Schulz in “Hogan’s Heroes“).
Clear enough? Good.
Now, let’s jump to the OTHER side of the literal battle lines.
If you show up to protest said Nazis and White Supremacists, good for you. Getting a permit is a better thing, but let’s say you’re being generally peaceful. (As near as I’ve read, it seems that the woman who was killed in the car attack was among those protesting peacefully.)
Nota bene: “Peaceful” doesn’t mean you try to get in the face of the dude with the Nazi flag to try to instigate him. And it should go without saying that “peaceful” also doesn’t include bringing and using your preferred battle items for when you plan to throw down with the other side.
And here, we are specifically calling out the “Antifa” nut jobs who have done this across the country, using violence to get their way or make their points.
As the New York Times noted:
Unlike most of the counterdemonstrators in Charlottesville and elsewhere, members of antifa have shown no qualms about using their fists, sticks or canisters of pepper spray to meet an array of right-wing antagonists whom they call a fascist threat to American democracy. As explained this week by a dozen adherents of the movement, the ascendant new right in the country requires a physical response.
Jonah Goldberg of National Review writes about this today:
Fighting Nazis is a good thing, but fighting Nazis doesn’t necessarily make you or your cause good. By my lights this is simply an obvious fact.
The greatest Nazi-killer of the 20th century was Josef Stalin. He also killed millions of his own people and terrorized, oppressed, enslaved, or brutalized tens of millions more. The fact that he killed Nazis during the Second World War (out of self-preservation, not principle) doesn’t dilute his evil one bit
The young Communists and fascists fighting for power in the streets of 1920s Germany had far more in common with each other than they had with decent liberals or conservatives, as we understand those terms today. That’s always true of violent radicals and would-be totalitarians.
As Hitler solidified power and effectively outlawed the Communist Party of Germany, The Communist International (Comintern) abandoned its position that socialist and progressive groups that were disloyal to Moscow were “fascist” and instead encouraged Communists everywhere to build “popular fronts” against the common enemy of Nazism.
These alliances of convenience with social democrats and other progressives were a great propaganda victory for Communists around the world because they bolstered the myth that Communists were just members of the Left coalition in the fight against Hitler, bigotry, fascism, etc.
(President Trump) borrowed from Fox News Channel’s Sean Hannity the bogus term “alt-left” to describe the antifa radicals.
The term is bogus for the simple reason that, unlike the alt-right, nobody calls themselves “the alt-left.” And that’s too bad. One of the only nice things about the alt-right is that its leaders are honest about the fact that they want nothing to do with traditional American conservatism. Like the original Nazis, they seek to replace the traditional Right with their racial hogwash.
The antifa crowd has a very similar agenda with regard to traditional American liberalism. These goons and thugs oppose free speech, celebrate violence, despise dissent, and have little use for anything else in the American political tradition. But many liberals, particularly in the media, are victims of the same kind of confusion that vexed so much of American liberalism in the 20th century. Because antifa suddenly has the (alt-)right enemies, they must be the good guys. They’re not.
And that’s why this debate is so toxically stupid. Fine, antifa isn’t as bad as the KKK. Who cares? Since when is being less bad than the Klan a major moral accomplishment?
This is the point that is worthwhile, and may be the point that the President rather ham-handedly was trying to make.
And another thing to ask: The guy who drove the car into everyone at the Nazi rally. Is he “better” or “worse” than the guy who shot up the Republican Congressional baseball practice? As far as I’m concerned, they’re both going to Hell. The only difference is what sort of ironic punishment Satan decides to give them for eternity.
(And as I get ready to post this, it looks like Steve Bannon is out at the White House, which will be a joy to many, including Goldberg and others at National Review, who have despised Bannon’s seemingly close ties to the alt-Right movement.)
If only Ashford’s preferred candidate, Jeb Bush, had been elected…
Onto happier thoughts…
Congressman Don Bacon was on the Twitters asking…
I agreed with 2014 version of who opposed ACA…but he flipflopped on this like many other issues. Maybe he’ll flip again?
Well Congressman, there was word that at Brad Ashford’s recent “townhall” (no word on why Ashford didn’t have ONE of these when he was an actual House Rep…) he did just that flipping and flopping.
Ashford reportedly said that he would favor an increase in the Social Security age. Which is surprising, since Ashford slammed Bacon for this in the 2016 campaign. And as a matter of fact, the DCCC spent about $2M attacking Bacon for this position.
So Ashford has been on both sides of ObamaCare. Both sides of the Keystone Pipeline. Now apparently both sides of the Social Security issue.
As someone once said, voters want a compass, not a weathervane.
Senator Deb Fischer had three bills passed in the U.S. Senate before Congress recessed for the August break. (You can read the details of them here.)
Since then she has been traveling across Nebraska meeting with groups and other constituents — as she does every August.
Then again, Fischer is back in Nebraska nearly every weekend, so August meetings aren’t any real change to her busy schedule.
Driving me nuts
Here is a story that ground my gears this morning — as someone who started their political career as a driver on a statewide campaign.
Politico has a story about a staff memo leaked from a Congressional office on “Instructions on Staffing and Driving” for the Congressman in his Indiana Congressional district.
The Politico headline is: “The agonizing, 8-page memo on how to chauffeur a congressman – Pity the poor aide charged with driving Rep. Todd Rokita around his district.“
No, pity the boss of the snowflakes who wrote this article.
As a former driver, I never had a candidate or anyone else I had to drive treat me any way other than respectfully. (That being said, they’re not ALL like that, but surprise.)
But this memo is for a young or inexperienced staffer to learn how to be prepared, as well as to understand that they’re not out on a burger run with their buddy. They are driving a mobile office. Their job is to treat the Member the same way they would if they were sitting in their office with them. This is especially the case where “Driver” is often one of the entry-level type positions for the new kid out of college, who never had a job before, now in close daily proximity to the top person in the office.
Maybe this particular Rep is known has a hard-ass, with lots of turnover or some such. Unknown. But if you’re new to politics, or any office situation, you could do a LOT worse than having this type of memo to let you know the basics of doing your job.
That the writers here don’t understand, and sneer at this, is also part of the problem.
Workin’ for it
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