Celebrities

Media treating Aretha Franklin without R-E-S-P-E-C-T

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Instead of remembering Aretha Franklin as one of the most amazing singing talents over several generations, The Daily Beast couldn’t help but use her death to take a potshot at Trump. Surely that news was as easily told during her life rather than using the opportunity of her death because the clickbait was juicier. Instead of listing the decades of amazing talent, it’s better to be grubs.

The article suggests she turned down an invite to his 2017 inauguration but happily sung for him multiple times at Trump venues over many years.

So what is the point? That Franklin was happy to make money from Trump when he was a celebrity but since she was a backer of the Hillary Clinton campaign that might have conflicted with her sense of party affiliation? Ahh, but no, the article confirms that Elton John refused to perform too! Take that you evil POTUS!

Sadly, even in the deep sorrow of Franklin’s passing, the media can’t help but use it to push a narrative of hate. Sorry, who is spreading division? How about honoring her legacy?Pretty sure her final words had zip to do with Trump.

As Aretha would have said “you better think, think, what you’re trying to do to me!

Musk to be investigated by SEC over tweets

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CM has always thought that Elon Musk is the ultimate salesman. CM has also wrote that the biggest risk to being a short seller was then”cult” status of the company. On any rational investment grounds the stock is ridiculously priced but as the old adage goes, “the market can stay irrational longer than you can remain solvent!

Tesla is a car company that is worth more than GM, Ford & FiatChrysler combined. One that trades at 5x Daimler in valuation terms, a luxury competitor that is in the sweet spot of its product line up and rudely profitable.

Back in June, Musk bought $35mn worth of shares in Tesla. The whole idea that someone is willing to fork out $75bn on a whim seems somewhat implausible. Is it safe to assume that all of 100s of lawyers, bankers and brokers would need a little bit of time to prepare the necessary documentation to cement such a ridiculous sum? Or is money now just so free and easy that a billionaire deploys a vault full of cash loaded full of Zero Halliburtons into a private jet after a few phone calls?

SEC enforcement attorneys had already been gathering general information about Tesla’s public statements on manufacturing goals and sales targets. Now SEC attorneys are investigating whether his tweets about securing funding were factual.

CM is not accusing Musk of insider trading albeit as a matter of course the SEC should investigate when he knew about his mega financier. One wonders how it is that we know so little about the buyer, the term sheet, the question of shareholder approval and how “secure” it is? Taking it private will remove the lens of quarterly reporting but it doesn’t remove the fact of how dreadfully the company is run or how amateur production is. Even if public scrutiny is removed, the problems of profitability don’t disappear and the need for funds, credit ratings etc if he taps public markets for debt capital remain.

If Musk pulls it all off and the company becomes a roaring success then CM will gladly eat a whole humble pie and openly admit it was wrong.

As to the SEC investigation let’s hope it has learnt the lessons of its bumbling incompetency over Bernie Madoff and doesn’t miss anything that might be bleeding obvious.

The NY Times lectures Americans about child rearing

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Ahh, The New York Times. No sooner had it justified the hiring of a white/male/cop hating (torn asunder if one should be all three) and newly discovered NYT loathing editor in Sarah Jeong, it went out to lecture Americans on the importance of enforcing morals when raising children.

Should we pay attention when the openly homophobic NYT, a paper whose masthead endorses everything it claims it isn’t, points fingers? So who in its view would it prefer as a role model to have American parents instill such virtues in their kids? As opinion writer/photographer Damon Winter wrote, “What is it like to see young people exposed to so much anger? Heartbreaking.

While the tear-jerking article is best read to a sorrowful violin, let’s see some of the positive role models and people of integrity the paper rarely calls into question. Those from the left which the NYT might champion as possessing the higher moral code somewhat missing in Trump voters. Here are 15 options they may consider…

1. Sarah Jeong – white, male, police, NYT hating racist ? As a NYT employee she’s been vetted.

2. Peter Fonda – who thought Barron Trump should be locked in a cage with pedophiles?

3. Samantha Bee – who is comfortable calling Ivanka a feckless c*nt who should sit in a short skirt on her daddy’s lap to change his policy?

4. Johnny Depp  – who said it’s been a while since an actor assassinated a president?

5. Madonna – who threatened to blow up the White House?

6. Michelle Wolf – who thinks its funny to celebrate abortion or characterise Sarah Huckabee Sanders (SHS) as a fat softball playing lesbian Uncle Tom for white women? Say what happened to being PC?

7. Kathy Griffin – who held a bloodied decapitated head of Trump and then complained it was unfair that Trump ruined her career? Apologised, retracted it and complained again that she wanted pay equality despite her self inflicted stupidity causing her career to be in the dumps.

8. Maxine Waters – who suggested Americans should openly attack Trump admin officials in public after SHS was kicked out of the Red Hen restaurant?

9. Snoop Dogg – who shot POTUS in a music video?

10. Robert DeNiro – who wants to punch Trump in the face? Or the standing ovation he received for saying “F*ck Trump

11. Joy Behar – who is comfortable suggesting devout Christians are mentally ill?

12. Whoopi Goldberg – for supposedly calling Jeannine Pirro a “sand n*gger”?

13. Jim Acosta – CNN reporter who can’t take a fraction of what he dishes out and expects SHS to apologize for someone else’s beliefs? Or for asking inappropriate and irrelevant questions during the Kim summit?

14. Joe Biden – former VP who threatened to punch Trump behind the school shed?

15. Or perhaps put forward all the Hollywood celebrities who threatened if Trump became president to leave America but never did?

There is no question there are some highly unsavory characters on both sides of partisan politics. Yet to sandbag all 63mn who voted for The Donald as racist, bigoted and uneducated deplorables with questionable child raising children abilities re-inforces why liberals will have such a hard time convincing people they actually stand for something. If the Dems lose the mid-terms then it must be Russian meddling again, not their unhinged lunacy.

Until the left acknowledge they have a major problem with their image (especially as they go ever more socialist) they’ll struggle to convert many to their side. Last week even Maduro in Venezuela said socialism has been a massive failure.

There is a certain hollowness to Trump celebrating  his 50% approval rating (higher than Obama’s at the same stage). Reality is that Macron, May, Merkel, Trudeau and Turnbull dwindle in the mid 20-30s.

Despite such constant overwhelmingly negative media bias dished out to POTUS, just how badly can the mainstream media be misreading the mood of the people? The more negatives they hurl, the higher his support. The more effusive praise breathed on other world leaders, the more damage is done to their popularity. What gives?

It isn’t that Damon Winter doesn’t make a valid point about the importance of teaching all children good manners and ethics, it is a bit rich coming from a paper that has virtually no moral compass whatsoever. When The NY Times walks the talk it maybe worth paying attention.

No reason why it shouldn’t convert from a broadsheet to a tabloid to keep up with its new found image of ignoring every aspect of ethics it so willingly pushes on the rest of us.

High Time The NY Times believed or changed its own self-prescribed S&E code

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Integrity is a must in journalism. Rarely do we see it. It seems that the white hating “fab new editor” Sarah Jeong also hates men and cops. If we forgive her hatred because others baited such that she was just giving it back, is there any evidence police mistreated her? Could it be a question of pulling her over for a traffic violation that they were doing their job, not deserved of “f*ck the police.” ?

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Although not on Jeong’s watch, isn’t the hypocrisy telling? Several weeks before the Putin-Trump summit in Helsinki the NYT was championing LGBT Pride Week. Post the summit, the paper proudly displayed a homophobic cartoon to disparage the two presidents. How is it that the champions of identity politics can’t even get their own self determined playing field equal?

In terms of integrity, fairness and truth the paper fails on all counts. Let’s see for ourselves. A quick referral to The NY Times own Standards & Ethics page we find:

Integrity

For more than a century, men and women of The Times have jealously guarded the paper’s integrity. Whatever else we contribute, our first duty is to make sure the integrity of The Times is not blemished during our stewardship.  At a time of growing and even justified public suspicion about the impartiality, accuracy and integrity of some journalists and some journalism, it is imperative that The Times and its staff maintain the highest possible standards to insure that we do nothing that might erode readers’ faith and confidence in our news columns. This means that the journalism we practice daily must be beyond reproach.

Under Fairness it prescribes:

The goal of The New York Times is to cover the news as impartially as possible — “without fear or favor,” in the words of Adolph Ochs, our patriarch — and to treat readers, news sources, advertisers and others fairly and openly, and to be seen to be doing so. The reputation of The Times rests upon such perceptions, and so do the professional reputations of its staff members. Thus The Times and members of its news department and editorial page staff share an interest in avoiding conflicts of interest or an appearance of a conflict.

And Truth

As journalists we treat our readers, viewers, listeners and online users as fairly and openly as possible. Whatever the medium, we tell our audiences the complete, unvarnished truth as best we can learn it. We correct our errors explicitly as soon as we become aware of them. We do not wait for someone to request a correction. We publish corrections in a prominent and consistent location or broadcast time slot. Staff members who plagiarize or who knowingly or recklessly provide false information for publication betray our fundamental pact with our readers. We do not tolerate such behavior.

As CM mentioned yesterday, there is no call for a boycott of the NYT or a movement to fire Sarah Jeong. CM wants these people at the NYT to walk the talk. If there is a code that the paper lives and dies by, stand by it or change it to reflect the unhinged nature the once reputable paper has become. Once again free markets will ultimately decide the paper’s fate. If it’s subscriber ranks swell then all power to it reading the mood of the public. Not even the return of the remains of gallant Korean War veterans who fought for their freedom remains worthy front page news. No just more anti-Trump noise.

The irony is that all the Jeong saga has exposed is that standards only apply conditionally. Just like those Hollywood actors who threatened to leave the US if Trump was elected. Pretty much all of them are still here.

The NY Times no longer hides the fact that it breaches all of it’s own self-imposed governance. That racism can be defended (even if it is not condoned) and because the paper is  so proud of its new hire it publicly announced an apology on Jeong’s behalf. Oh the sincerity! Surely if she is sorry for her racist outbursts, she could openly apologize herself? Perhaps the S&E code is still in transit to her home in Portland!

Imagine if the police decided to deprioritise a distress call from Jeong? It is highly likely they wouldn’t. There is a difference in those who put their lives on the line and a Harvard trust-fund baby that tweets from the safety of the very security those she accuses provide her.

Staring at the dictator – redux

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In Feb 2017, CM wrote a piece titled ‘Staring at the Dictator’ which highlighted that winning hearts and minds comes from sensible and reasonable dialogue. Not from widespread activism where the sole purpose is to shut down debate. Hasn’t the left learnt that physically and verbally bullying people senseless and mocking them for their supposed ignorance doesn’t work? Yet they still keep screaming the same hypo-ventilated bile, as Robert Reich has below. Nothing would make CM happier if democracy does its job in any country. If we believe he speaks for the majority, he has absolutely nothing to fear. No need for protests of any kind. Yet he shouldn’t blame the constituents for overthrowing bad governments who believe in divine incumbency. Blame bad policy.

If Democrats hadn’t treated the last election as a coronation then perhaps Hillary Clinton may have got her wish. Things had obviously become so bad at the grass roots level that the establishment was rejected. Even after all of the p*ssy grabbing allegations had been brought to light, Trump still won. His vulgarity was on the ballot. His “no one respects women more than I do” lie after this revelation in the 2nd debate was broadcast to 100s of millions. It was also on the ticket. Despite his supposed racist demagoguery, he got a higher proportion of black and Hispanic voters than either McCain or Romney. Don’t hate the player, hate the game. These are facts, as much as we may not like what they portend.

The #whitelash arguments don’t rub either because the same people voted a black man in twice. Clinton didn’t lose because she was a woman. She lost in part because she ran on the basis she was a woman. Surveys may show that Republican voters don’t want a female president however should Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley run in 2024 she would win their support on the basis of her strength, not her gender or her Native American/Sikh heritage. Ability should be all that matters. Clinton’s constant griping 18 months after her loss shows just how poor a president she would have made. It is so bad even Rasmussen reports that a majority of Democrats don’t think she would have been any better than Trump. Take that!

If Trump loses legitimately (assuming he runs) in 2020 then so be it. In the last 1.5 years in office, American citizens have had plenty of time to weigh him in their own minds, regardless of the media’s relentless onslaught of over-the-top sensationalist click-baiting. If citizens feel he has delivered in areas that affected them on a personal level, they’re probably on balance willing to vote for the same again unless the alternative offers something better. At the same time they have had plenty of time to weigh the Democrats. They’ve seen first hand the bitterness at the State of the Union plastered on the faces of Pelosi et al. They’ve heard Maxine Waters call to her supporters to gang up on the staff in the current administration. They’ve seen countless Hollywood celebrities chant vile hate from celebrating the decapitation of the President, calling Ivanka a “feckless c*nt” to hoping 12yo Barron is ripped from Melania’s arms and caged with pedophiles. Democrat supporters have gone so far as to shoot GOP politicians. CM is quite sure that however horrid the President may be, these are hardly the types of antics that will sway opinion of the swing voters to join the self-appointed ‘righteous’ like Reich. And no, not all Democrats think like this much like many Republicans don’t endorse stupidity from their own. It lets down both sides.

Republicans or swing voters do not respond well to being called intolerant, cruel, racist, misogynist, xenophobic or climate sceptics without fact or basis. Since when does one consciously vote for others over their own needs? It isn’t selfish. If one is buried under onerous tax legislation, red tape or financial destitution do they vote to put the interests of others above their own? No. As a long term Liberal Party (aka conservatives) voter in Australia, the current party has ‘left’ me. I didn’t leave them. They did not win my vote last election. It must be earned. They don’t represent my values. It didn’t take tribal beltings to force me to a conclusion. Nor negative media to discover it. Yet somehow the activists believe that constant bleating will cause me to change my mind.

What would be nice is to see properly supported factual (not subjective rhetorical) evidence that 63mn Trump supporters are as one when it comes to all the claims they make. I would love to see the arguments in all their gore should they exist. Not a one off event. Happy to see where my own arguments hold deep flaws.  Many Trump voters detest him on a moralistic level yet are happy to champion his achievements if they feel they get a direct benefit from them. So often claims are made to undermine his followers. Every time (and often) these assertions prove to be baseless, the journey to sway the other side to see reason gets thwarted even further. Time magazine issuing a confession over the photo-shopped cover of last week ended up at the bottom of a long article. It just shows just how unapologetic they are. Kathy Griffin was sorry until she wasn’t again. Talk about self serving.

To the comments made by Robert Reich today:

“My friends, this is a dark hour. Intolerance, cruelty, racism, misogyny, xenophobia, and environmental destruction have been let loose across the land.

Trump controls the Republican Party, the Republican Party controls the House and Senate, and the Senate and Trump will soon control the Supreme Court.

Republicans also control both chambers in 32 states (33 if you count Nebraska) and 33 governorships. And in many of these states they are entrenching their power by gerrymandering and arranging to suppress votes.

Yet only 27 percent of Americans are Republican, and the vast majority of Americans disapprove of Trump. The GOP itself is now little more than Trump, Fox News, a handful of billionaire funders, and evangelicals who oppose a woman’s right to choose, gay marriage, and the Constitution’s separation of church and state.

So what are we – the majority — to do?

First and most importantly, do not give up. That’s what they want us to do. Then they’d have no opposition at all.

Second, in the short term, if you are represented by a Republican senator, do whatever you can to get him or her to reject Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, or, at the least, postpone consideration until after the midterm elections. Urge others to join with you. 202-224-3121

Third, make a ruckus. Demonstrate. Engage in non-violent civil disobedience. Fight lies with truth. Join the resistance. Participate in http://www.indivisible.org and https://swingleft.org.

Fourth, vote this November 6 for people who will stand up to all this outrage. Mobilize and organize others to do so. Contact friends and relations in “red” states, and urge them to do the same.

Fifth, help lay the groundwork for the 2020 presidential election, so that even if Trump survives Mueller and impeachment he will not be reelected.

Finally, know that this fight will be long and hard. It will require our patience, our courage, and our resolve. The stakes could not be higher.”

Perhaps what Reich fails to get is that he is almost backhanding his own supporters in his rant. It is more than likely that a majority of Republican (and no doubt many centrist Democrat) voters want the liberal left to give up because it has become nothing but white noise. The more they protest the more tuned out they become. Control of the Supreme Court? I encourage you to read the cake shop transcript where Associate Justice Sotomayor shows without a doubt she is a political activist, not a judge. It is embarrassingly obvious. The Supreme Court is only supposed to apply impartiality around current laws (or those at the time of the legal action), not make a song and dance about wish lists and try to piece a verdict around how nice it would be if things were different. She was trying to argue 2018 laws around a 2012 issue. One doesn’t have to be a lawyer to work that one out.

To the assertion that a handful of billionaire funders lean the GOPs way, he should reflect that most of the billionaires in America reside in blue states. In today’s world, the big corporations win more by backing Democrats because more onerous regulation benefits their ability to squeeze out the smaller competition thanks to red tape. Laissez faire? You’ve got to be kidding.

Perhaps in closing, the most compelling argument Reich makes is the one which stands out above all others – “we, the majority.” If he wants to stop Trump, he just needs the majority to vote on the shared basis of his beliefs – case closed. No need for protests. After all he says that Trump’s base is so small. If almost 3 years of negative spin on the sitting POTUS has failed to convince the majority, nothing will. Screaming in public may seem therapeutic to the masses but should the GOP win the mid-terms then Reich will prove just as out of touch as he was prior to the election.

Silence is golden. Let democracy take its course. Let us see whether the Russians consolidate their pick in the mid-terms…Putin has even more reason to ensure America sees more “red.”

Monbiot is right

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CM has a soft spot for George Monbiot. Almost a decade ago he wrote about the Climategate scandal which showed the corruption within climate science. Monbiot suggested along the lines, “if you cut the average climate activist in half you’d discover most had little more than a passing grade in a liberal arts degree”. He, of the left himself, was in a sense kicking his own side for continuously trying to gloss over things they don’t want to admit. Monbiot believes that winning arguments requires proper debate, not making more noise to drown out dissenting voices. So it was refreshing to read his take on the famous G-7 picture of Merkel eyeballing a recalcitrant POTUS. Monbiot wrote,

There was much rejoicing this week over the photo of Trump being harangued by the other G7 leaders. But when I saw it, I thought: “The stitch-ups engineered by people like you produce people like him.” The machinations of remote elites in forums such as the G7, the IMF and the European Central Bank, and the opaque negotiation of unpopular treaties, destroy both trust and democratic agency, fuelling the frustration that demagogues exploit…Trump was right to spike the Trans-Pacific Partnership. He is right to demand a sunset clause for Nafta. When this devious, hollow, self-interested man offers a better approximation of the people’s champion than any other leader, you know democracy is in trouble.

It is a powerful point. CM has made the argument for years that the ‘people’ are getting fed up with leaders who do little more than feather their own nests for the future. So when voters put people in power that promise to put words into action is it any wonder we have the political upheaval we do? It is amplifying and with good reason.

The Italians didn’t like it when the French and Maltese took potshots at their newly elected leaders stopping and turning around refugee boats which were election promises. The Austrians are through listening to the bullies from Brussels lambasting them for deporting radical imams and their families as well as closing militant mosques. While the EU elites may have celebrated Macron’s victory they still overlooked Le Pen managed twice the vote Front National had ever received. The Hungarians are tired of being told they must take their quota of asylum seekers even if a referendum showed 98.4% were against it. Even Merkel got a stiff uppercut from the largely socialist leanings of Germans with the catapult of the anti-EU AfD to the second largest party. It isn’t just Europe either.

Canadians are tired of being told they must comply to compelled speech laws. They gave Trudeau a precursor of their anger last week by voting in Progessive Conservative Doug Ford Jr. as Ontario Premier. He annihilated Liberal Kathy Wynne so badly her party can’t even serve in parliament. While liberals were complaining Ford won it for being a white heterosexual male they overlooked that most constituents which gave Liberals 15 years to show something were sick of being taken for mugs. They’re exhausted being told by governments how they should live their lives and tired of policies that ensure endless misery if they fail to comply.

Even liberals in America can’t shake off TDS. By way of example, in the run up to the Democratic primaries in Maryland, 46% see getting rid of Trump as the highest election priority, with the usual progressive values of slashing crime (Baltimore highest crime in US), tackling opioid abuse (3rd highest rate of addicts), climate change and affordable healthcare registering less than 11% combined.

The irony of today’s political sphere is that the very politicians that are so fearful of the next election would romp home were they to actually listen and represent their citizens rather than let the likes of a Trump force them to wake up. CM has often been criticized for supporting Trump as a beacon of righteousness. Monbiot described why better than CM ever could – he is an absolute necessary evil to wake the world up from its slumber of feckless bureaucrats who only have their own interests as priorities. Despite all of the vulgarities, the glass jaw and vanity he is spooking incumbency.

Maybe $10m p.a. talkshow host Bill Maher expresses the absolute desperation of the left. Instead of coming forward with a raft of policies that would make Trump’s look utterly at sea, the best idea is to wish shared misery on Main St via a deep recession to achieve it. With leadership and depth of policy like that, Alec Baldwin’s 2020 campaign at the very least will field the collective audiences of Robert DeNiro, Samantha Bee and Sally Field as the purveyors of the behaviours we should aspire to.

The irony of the Ivanka bashing was that it was an Obama era policy

Never let the facts get in the way of a narrative. Liberals were incensed over the treatment of kids on the border which led to Samantha Bee calling Ivanka Trump a “feckless c*nt” for not doing anything about it. What so many on the left have failed to grasp is that the policy mess they’re seeing was introduced by the Obama administration in 2013. Pictures of how kids were being locked in cages like animals at the border were circulating this week when they were taken in 2014.

Mainstream media reports had surfaced that federal agencies had lost 1,500 kids. 80% of illegal immigrant parents were skipping court appearances to get their kids over the last 5 years for fear they’d be deported so they moved from the addresses they provided to make it difficult to track them.

So the irony is the outrage over Ivanka’s supposed insensitivity was based on an Obama era policy. Will the left acknowledge their identity politics hero ended up funneling unaccompanied kids via human traffickers? That innocent kids were abandoned on the border to die after they were used to get into America. Even the Washington Post reported at this but alas no liberal outrage. It only matters to play the man not the ball.