Monday, January 22, 2024

Help Me, Obi-Wan Nikki Haley: You're My Only Hope

Until yesterday afternoon, I was depressed about this year's presidential election. It seemed inevitable that Americans would be forced to choose between Joe Biden and Donald Trump as our next President. Both men are highly unattractive. Biden is a crime boss who has dementia, and Trump's flaws are too numerous to summarize briefly.

Then, the political landscape changed in an instant. Governor Ron DeSantis dropped out of the presidential race yesterday afternoon, and now Americans have three stark choices for our country's next President.

We can choose Joe Biden--or, more likely—the mystery candidate who will replace him when he drops out of the presidential race next summer for health reasons.

We can back Donald Trump, the runaway favorite Republican nominee. He's the odds-on favorite among conservative voters.

Or we can vote for former South Carolina governor Nikki Haley—the last remaining Republican to challenge Donald Trump for the Republican nomination.

If I get the opportunity, I will vote for Nikki Haley. She is eminently qualified to be the President of the United States, and for me, her chief attraction is that she is not Trump or Biden.

I have been disappointed by dark-horse presidential candidates in the past. I supported Bernie Sanders in 2016 and later realized he's just another political hack. I once thought Elizabeth Warren would make a good president because of her stance on student loans and corporate greed. But she's just another political hack who never did anything substantive to help working-class Americans,

I'm throwing my support to Nikki Haley. To borrow a line from Star Wars, Help us, Obi-Wan Nikki Haley. You're our only hope.

Sunday, January 21, 2024

Busted for Sedition! I Bought A Carhartt Shirt at Bass Pro Shop

Federal investigators asked banks to scour customer transactions for . . . purchases at stores including Dick's Sporting Goods and Bass Pro Shops . . .
Daily, January 18, 2024
I returned home from the grocery store late last week to find three black SUVs and an armored personnel carrier parked in my driveway. About a dozen FBI agents were milling around in my front yard. They all wore conservative business suits and looked like finalists in a Kevin Costner look-alike contest.

In my backyard, I saw ten or twelve SWAT team members dressed in black, wearing Kevlar, and carrying assault rifles. Uh-oh, I thought, I must have skipped a payment on my Chase credit card.

But it was far more serious than that. At the Justice Department's direction, my bank analyzed my credit card records and discovered I had purchased two Carhartt shirts at Bass Pro Shop. The Feds read me my rights and arrested me on two counts of sedition.

I mortgaged my house to hire the best criminal attorney in Baton Rouge—Robert Hufflepuff. "You've been caught red-handed," Hufflepuff told me, "and the evidence against you is overwhelming.

"It's only a matter of time," Hufflepuff added, "before the FBI finds out about those mittens you bought at Cabela's. And how will you explain that copy of Saint Teresa of Avila's autobiography on your bookshelf? Religious literature is another extremism indicator."

On my lawyer’s advice, I made a full confession and agreed to rat out my relatives and go into the witness protection program. I have a big family, and the Feds arrested dozens of my nieces, nephews, brothers-in-law, and ex-brothers-in-law. All of them had bought stuff from Bass Pro Shop, Cabela's, or Dick’s Sporting Goods, and a few had some religious books in their homes. It was the biggest bust of treason plotters since Waco.

I've learned a lot from this traumatic episode. I now realize I should have never bought those Carhartt shirts from Bass Pro Shop. If I had bought them from Academy Sports, the FBI wouldn’t have arrested me, and about two dozen of my relatives wouldn’t be facing hard time in a federal prison.

Second, the FBI witness protection program is not as glamorous as you might think. I hoped to make a fresh start in a charming city like San Francisco. Maybe I could get a gig as a hedge fund manager and pull down some big bucks.

Unfortunately, my FBI handler only offered me one option: a new identity as a Baptist preacher in Dry Prong, Louisiana. I decided to take my chances.

I'm so sorry. I bought a couple of shirts at Bass Pro Shop!

Fooling All of the People Some of the Time: Retired People, Working-Class Families, and Peope Living on Fixed Incomes are Suffering Under Bidenomics

 You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time.

Abraham Lincoln

How are Americans doing under Bidenomics? According to President Biden, we're all doing fine. This is what the President said just a few days ago:
Today’s report shows that we ended 2023 with inflation down nearly two-thirds from its peak and core inflation at its lowest level since May 2021. We saw prices go down over the course of the year for goods and services that are important for American households, like a gallon of gas, a gallon of milk, a dozen eggs, toys, appliances, car rentals, and airline fares. Despite what many forecasters predicted a year ago, inflation is down while growth and the job market have remained strong. 

 Of course, that's total bullshit, and Americans all know it--at least all the Americans who do their own grocery shopping. Week after week, I go to my local grocery store and am shocked at the price of nearly everything. 

I know, however, that I am more fortunate than many of my fellow Americans. I'm retired, but I don't depend solely on Social Security to pay my bills. However, one out of seven retired Americans live almost totally on their monthly Social Security checks. And the average Social Security check is only about $1700.

Who can live on that? Nobody. 

President Biden is about to demonstrate the truth of one of Abraham Lincoln's most famous observations. Biden fooled millions of people during the 2020 presidential campaign by hiding his cognitive decline and his family's influence-peddling racket. The obsequious mainstream media pitched a wild yarn about Bidenomics that has fooled some Americans to this day. Incredibly, almost a third of Americans believe Sleepy Joe is doing a good job managing the economy.

But Lincoln was right: you can't fool all the people all the time.  Now, we are in the 2024 presidential primary season, and Biden is about to see that millions of Americans have figured out that they are losing ground economically. Retired people, people living on fixed incomes, and working-class families by the millions are going to vote for Donald Trump or Nikki Haley.

Saturday, January 13, 2024

Our Year for Living Dangerously: 2024 Predictions and Premonitions from Flyover Country

 In late December or early January, pundits and commentators make predictions for the new year. This year, I’m going to join in that tradition from my home on Lake Mary in Southern Mississippi.

I’m making three predictions for 2024. I’m also sharing three premonitions about the coming year. I feel certain that my 2024 predictions will come true. I hope my premonitions will not come true, but I fear they will.


Prediction number one: Joe Biden won’t be the Democratic nominee for President in 2024.


I agree with James Howard Kunstler that Joe Biden will not be on the ballot for the presidential election in November. Biden will participate in most primaries, and he will easily collect enough delegates to capture the Democratic Party’s 2024 presidential nomination, but someonne else will be the Democratic Party's nominee.

As Kunstler has suggested, I think Biden will disclose that he has a serious medical condition sometime next summer. For the good of the country, he will say, he is stepping down from the presidential race and releasing his delegates to someone else.

Who will that person be? I don’t know and you don’t know, but someone living on Martha’s Vineyard knows. The Democratic nominee won’t be a person who participated in the Democratic primaries. After Biden steps aside, the Democratic Party’s Super Delegates will nominate someone who skipped the primaries. Credible speculation says it will be Michelle Obama.


The mainstream media pretends that Biden is a serious candidate for another term as President, but no one believes that. His declining health is evident to everyone. Biden has some sort of cognitive disability, which is steadily getting worse. 

Moreover, the Republicans are finding evidence that the Biden family took bribes from foreign countries and stashed the money in offshore bank accounts. If substantiated, those charges could led to an  impeahment trial during Biden's second term. 


I think Biden will pardon himself and his entire family (including his grandchildren) before leaving office. He will then shuffle off the world stage and live the remainder of his days in an opulent and secure memory care facility. 


Prediction number two: Donald Trump will be the Republican nominee for President in November. 


Within weeks, the Supreme Court will overrule decisions by various state officials to keep Trump off the presidential ballot for allegedly participating in an insurrection. You can take that to the bank.


Trump is also facing criminal charges in various jurisdictions. I think he will beat those charges. Alternatively, any convictions against him will be overturned by the appellate courts.


Thus, Trump will be the Republican nominee for president, and he will face an opponent chosen by the Democratic Party’s Super Delegates.


Prediction number three: Americans will regret our involvement in the Ukraine war.


Ukraine is losing its war with Russia. It will never regain the Donbas or reoccupy Crimea. Meanwhile, the NATO countries are more and more ambivalent about their support for Ukraine. Russia has the stamina for siege warfare and prolonged fighting. The western nations do not.


Eventually, Ukraine and Russia must reach a settlement, and that settlement will require Ukraine to give up some territory. The longer the West waits before coming to that conclusion, the more people will die in this foolish and unnecessary war.


Now here are my premonitions for 2024—premonitions I hope will not come to pass.


Premonition number one: Urban violence. I fear an outbreak of violence in our cities during the summer of 2024, which will peak during the Republican and Democratic Party conventions. I also fear anti-Israel protests will become larger and more disruptive and will invite more violence.


Premonition number two. Rampant inflation. In spite of our government’s effort to deceive the American people, inflation in this country is out of control and is getting worse. In particular, the rising cost of food and housing will cause millions of Americans to suffer before the year is out. 


Premonition number three: Terrorists will cross our southern border and kill hundreds of Americans.


Illegal immigrants are entering the United States at the rate of 10,000 people a day, and they are not all coming from Latin America. A significant number of border crossers come from the Middle East and some are on the government’s Terrorist Watch List. No nation can absorb those numbers indefinitely without endangering its sovereignty.

2024 may be the year in which PresidentJoe Biden's insane boder policy enables terrorists to cross our southern border and commit a wanton and spectacular act of murder.  I hope not.



I hope 2024 will be the year when Americans take prudent steps to protect our security, our culture, and our way of life. I hope this is the year Americans will stop electing crooks and madmen to public office and quit sending their children to universities that promote racism.


I fear, however, that America will continue along its downward path toward financial and social collapse. If Americans don’t do something this year to remove the crooks from public office, reform our education system, and get our financial house in order, the days of American greatness will be over.



Maine Secretary of State Shenna Bellows: Preventing the wrong people from running for President

Monday, January 8, 2024

We don’t know nothin' about no diversity. LSU rebrands its DEI agenda.

As reported by Robert Mann on Something Like the Truth, his blog site, Louisiana State University recently rebranded its DEI agenda. For those of you living under a rock, DEI stands for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. 

Last Friday, LSU President Bill Tate alerted the staff and faculty that its Division of Inclusion, Civil Rights, and Title IX has a new name: the Division of Engagement, Civil Rights, and Title IX.

Why the name change? LSU obviously took this action to counter mounting opposition to the university's DEI agenda in the state legislature. The university hopes to stave off criticism of its diversity program by simply changing the name.

LSU president Bill Tate explained the action differently in an email message. Unfortunately, me no speakie gobbledygook, so I am unable to translate it for you. I’ll quote part of the message; you can translate it yourself.
Engagement is defined in several ways. We use two forms of the definition. For us, it represents a two-way process that enables change on both sides. To fully deliver on the promise our flagship offers, we must engage with each other to exchange views and experiences and share potential solutions to our most pressing challenges. Second, engagement reflects a serious commitment. We must commit to find[ing] ways to translate our discoveries and talent to serve and elevate the state and its people.
What the hell does that mean?

I draw these conclusions from LSU's diversity-and-inclusion shuffle:

First, LSU is not revising its DEI agenda; the fact that it has switched from using the word inclusion to engagement does not alter the university's obsession with race and gender.

Second, President Tate's word-salad justification for the change was probably written by the university's attorneys, which tells us that the lawyers are now running the university – not the academics.

Finally, LSU‘s rebranding of DEI shows that its leaders are cowards. If they’re fully committed to DEI, why change its name? 

As I just said, I think the change was motivated by the fear that the conservative state legislature and Louisiana’s new governor will clamp down on LSU and perhaps cut its funding to punish it for its flirtation with DEI--higher education's current obsession.

LSU wants to pursue its DEI agenda without alienating its funding source. As Robert Mann observed, the move was dumb and ham-handed.
In addition, the change is a transparent act of obsequious cowardice and a sure sign that LSU has lost its way.

We don't know nothin' about no diversity.

Saturday, January 6, 2024

Harvard is never having to say you're sorry

If you’ve seen the movie Love Story (and I don’t recommend it ), you’ve heard Ali Macgraw deliver her famous line: “Love is never having to say you’re sorry."

Ali got the line wrong. Actually, the aphorism goes: “Harvard is never having to say you’re sorry.”

Claudine Gay, the first black woman to serve as Harvard's president,  stepped down a few days ago; Gay was unable to weather a storm of controversy around her equivocal response to a question about anti-Semitism at her university and by credible allegations of plagiarism in her dissertation and other scholarly publications.

Don’t cry for me, Argentina. Gay will resume her job as a tenured Harvard faculty member, earning almost $900,000 a year--close to what she made as Harvard's president. Good wages for a scholar with a skimpy publication record and serious charges of plagiarism.

Nobody apologized. Gay said she stood by the integrity of her scholarship and said her downfall was driven, at least partly, by “racial animus.” Harvard professors who supervised Gay's Harvard dissertation did not apologize for missing plagiarized passages in her dissertation draft. She would undoubtedly have corrected the errors if her advisors had caught them. 

As I said, Harvard is never having to say you’re sorry It just blunders along, year after weary year, sucking in money from billionaires who do not know what to do with their wealth, spouting platitudes about diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Harvard Law School hired Elizabeth Warren as a professor, no doubt because she claimed to be partly native American--a Cherokee, to be precise. That assertion proved false, but Warren retained her post at Harvard.  In fact, she sailed on to become a U.S. senator and even had the temerity to run for president.

Harvard will weather the little storm kicked up by President Gay. Its endowment may suffer a bit, but the university has $60 billion in endowment money. Harvard professors can wipe their asses with $100 bills from the endowment fund, and Harvard will never run out of money.

Harvard's reputation may suffer a bit, but thousands of young people still want to attach their name to a Harvard diploma. I was one of those people and foolishly spent three years at Harvard to get a doctoral degree. It wasn’t worth much.

As others have said, Americans should stop believing that Harvard is the acme of scholarly intelligence. Harvard does not maintain rigorous standards; ninety percent of its undergraduates complete their degreeswith honors. Harvard claims to be urgently concerned about discrimination and prejudice against underprivileged minorities. Still, it has shown itself to be little more than a haven for anti-Semites and race baiters.

I regret the years I spent at Harvard. I regret the money that I borrowed to pay Harvard tuition. I regret the stresses on my family brought on by my ill-advised decision to leave the lovely state of Alaska, where I was making a good living, to wallow at a  sordid university in the dirty and inhospitable town of Cambridge. Indeed, I found Harvard,  Cambridge, and the greater Boston area to be provincial, bigoted, and willfully ignorant about how the real world works. 

Harvard is never having to say you're sorry.

Wednesday, January 3, 2024

The U.S is bumbling toward a serious confrontation with Russia over Ukraine

 2024 dawns with America embroiled in a war in Eastern Europe. The United States is fighting a proxy war with Russia in Ukraine, and the Russians are winning.

The United States bears a large share of responsibility for this catastrophe. Our government destabilized Ukraine in 2014 when it goaded the Ukrainians into overthrowing a popularly elected pro-Russian president. Within weeks, Russia responded by annexing Crimea. Six years later, Russia invaded Ukraine and now occupies the largely Russian-speaking Donbas region in the eastern region of that wretched country.

The Ukraine war has been a humanitarian disaster. At least a half million people have been killed or maimed in Ukraine, and the country's population has been cut in half as refugees flee to other European countries to escape the fighting. 

Without question, Ukraine is losing its war with Russia. Ukraine's vaunted spring counteroffensive achieved almost nothing. The Ukrainians will never oust Russia from Crimea or the Donbas, and everyone knows it.

Anyone who thinks Russia will tire of the war and simply give up doesn't know Russian history. Hitler besieged Leningrad during World War II for 900 days and never captured the city, even though one million Russians starved to death before the Russians broke the siege.

Americans are mistaken if they think the Ukraine misadventure will not affect them. Our politicians crow that the Ukraine war is a windfall for the United States because the Ukrainians are killing Russians with American weapons while the United States sits safely on the sidelines.  The Ukraine war will weaken Russia, the pundits say, but they are wrong.

Russia's army is larger today than it was before the Ukraine war began, and it is the United States, not Russia, that is tiring of the war. Congress is balking at the prospect of limitless funding for the Ukraine project, and our European allies are beginning to wish they had never followed our cognitively challenged President into the briar patch that is Ukraine.

Americans will pay a price for for our feckless and arrogant foreign policy. President Putin will have his revenge against us. He is tirelessly working toward the day when the US dollar is no longer the world’s reserve currency. We can expect some act of retribution on a scale that will shock us.

There will be a reckoning for our government's behavior, likely before the November 2024 election.