Combs Spouts Off

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Posts Tagged ‘politics’

Is Beto the John Edwards of 2020?

Posted by Richard on March 14, 2019

Shot:

‘That’s gross!’ Beto O’Rourke’s stunt in Iowa just killed our appetites (and hopefully his chances) [pics]

Chaser:

HACKTASTIC: Look closely this other fawning magazine profile of a rising Democrat pretty boy

Say what you will about John Edwards, but at least he didn’t campaign on coffee shop counters.

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Denver’s flexible snow plowing policy

Posted by Richard on February 23, 2019

When we get snow in Denver, the city generally plows only main streets (those with a yellow stripe down the middle). The official policy is that residential streets only get plowed when a foot or more of snow falls. Last night’s storm dumped only about half that in my neighborhood.

But this morning, either my block experienced about a week’s worth of traffic or a plow came through. I’m pretty sure it was the latter. So what gives? Why the deviation from policy?

Oh, that’s right. The mayor is up for reelection this spring. Ain’t politics grand?

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Coloradans strongly support TABOR

Posted by Richard on February 21, 2019

All those newly-elected Democrats in Colorado had better pay attention to this:

new poll was released indicating overwhelming support of Colorado’s Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights, which most Coloradans lovingly refer to as TABOR. Fully 71 percent of the 500 Coloradans surveyed expressed support for the policy, and lest you think these numbers are skewed, the breakdown of who was asked is… rather reflective of an actual election in Colorado: 37 percent of respondents were either unaffiliated or members of a third party, 32 percent were Democrats, and 31 percent were Republicans.

Interestingly, the survey found that just under half of respondents supported TABOR and a fourth were unsure when no description of it was provided. When respondents were given a brief objective description of TABOR, virtually all the previously unsure became supporters:

On the initial position on the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights (TABOR), 47% of respondents favor it, 26% oppose it and 26% are unsure.
After an explanation of TABOR, 71% of respondents favor it, 28% oppose it and 2% are unsure. The explanation provided was the following.
TABOR, the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights is an amendment to the state constitution passed in 1992 which requires state and local government to seek voter approval in order to raise taxes and also limits growth in state spending to population growth plus inflation. If the state collects more revenues than it is allowed to spend, then it must return the surplus to the taxpayers.

The description caused virtually no change in opposition. So maybe the quarter of respondents opposed already all knew exactly what TABOR does. Or maybe their opposition isn’t based on what TABOR does, but on the fact that all the “right people” in government hate it and all the racist, homophobic, misogynistic monsters (e.g., conservatives and Republicans) support it.

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State of the Union: pretty darn good

Posted by Richard on February 8, 2019

I’m pretty pleased and impressed by Trump’s State of the Union address. I’m not quite as impressed as Newt Gingrich, who thinks it “changed history.” But he makes some good points, and I agree that watching it is better than just reading the transcript.

There were, of course, things that rubbed this libertarian the wrong way, chief among them being his embrace of “nationwide family leave.” I guess Ivanka finally got to him on that. The last thing this country needs is yet another entitlement, and forcing employers to pay for it instead of taxpayers doesn’t make it any less bad. It will just further reinforce the already far-too-prevalent belief that one person’s (perceived) need constitutes a morally legitimate claim on someone else’s property.

But there were also some truly moving moments (I’m thinking especially of his honoring of Judah Samet, Joshua Kaufman, and Herman Zeitchik). And some parts of the speech made me want to cheer. Here are two:

Here, in the United States, we are alarmed by new calls to adopt socialism in our country.  America was founded on liberty and independence –- not government coercion, domination, and control.  We are born free, and we will stay free.  Tonight, we renew our resolve that America will never be a socialist country.

Our brave troops have now been fighting in the Middle East for almost 19 years.  In Afghanistan and Iraq, nearly 7,000 American heroes have given their lives.  More than 52,000 Americans have been badly wounded.  We have spent more than $7 trillion in the Middle East.

As a candidate for President, I pledged a new approach.  Great nations do not fight endless wars.

The polling numbers for the speech looked great for Trump, including the YouGov survey immediately afterward commissioned by CBS News. It showed approval/agreement numbers for Trump’s specific ideas ranging from 71% to 78%.

CNN also had a post-speech poll with similarly positive numbers. But both networks emphasized that the audience for SOTU broadcasts leans heavily to the President’s own party. CNN in particular, as NewsBusters noted (emphasis in original):

So I just want to stress here, for a State of the Union address, the President’s partisans, his supporters tend to turn out to watch the speech. This is true of a president of either party,” he warned viewers after also noting the poll was only of people who actually watched the speech. “So tonight, we saw a heavily Republican skewed audience turn out to watch the President’s speech.”

As this author wondered last year: If you’re polling a skewed pool of respondents, then why take the poll in the first place? It’s because they like to hold up the results when it’s a Democratic president giving the State of the Union address.

Remember when CNN and CBS always discounted the favorable poll results after Obama’s SOTU speeches because viewers were mostly Democrats? And reminded us that the results weren’t representative of the country as a whole, only of those who watched? Me neither.

Both networks made a laughable attempt to find something negative in viewers’ reactions by focusing on their poll’s bipartisanship question. The CNN-commissioned SRSS poll asked, “Do you think President Trump will or will not succeed in increasing cooperation between Democrats and Republicans?” 53% said he will not succeed. The CBS YouGov poll asked, “Did what you heard tonight make you think that Donald Trump and Nancy Pelosi will…” 33% thought they’d work together more, 4% thought they’d work together less, and 63% thought it won’t change things much. Both networks made this sound like a failing of Trump’s.

But who do you think this “skewed Republican” audience is more likely to blame for lack of bipartisan cooperation, Trump or Pelosi, Schumer, et al? Well, here’s a clue: YouGov also asked, “Looking ahead, do you think the President’s speech will do more to…?” 56% said unite the country, only 8% said divide the country, and 36% said it won’t change things much. So a lot of viewers think Trump’s speech had a positive effect on the country as a whole, but that it won’t help with Pelosi. Sounds about right to me.

UPDATE: I almost missed this bit of hilarity. NPR is not only partisan, but clumsily and stupidly partisan. And boy, did they get called on it.

Donald Trump Jr. joined the pile-on attacking NPR Wednesday morning over the organization’s “fact check” on President Trump’s State of the Union address that many criticized as partisan and unfair.

“FACT CHECK: President Trump praised the record number of women in Congress, but that’s almost entirely because of Democrats, not Trump’s party,” NPR wrote late Tuesday.

The tweet was referring to a rare moment in bipartisan celebration Tuesday night when Mr. Trump acknowledged the record number of women serving in Congress.

“Exactly one century after Congress passed the constitutional amendment giving women the right to vote, we also have more women serving in Congress than at any time before,” the president declared.

The Washington Times has several more great responses (including David Harsanyi’s), so go read the whole thing.

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Sen. Hirono: “We Democrats know so much”

Posted by Richard on December 6, 2018

Can’t. Stop. Laughing.

Sen. Mazie Hirono suggested Tuesday that Democrats have a hard time connecting with voters because their breadth of knowledge tends to turn people off.

The Hawaii Democrat made the comment during a discussion at the “Bend Towards Justice” conference in Washington when she was asked by Slate editor Dahlia Lithwick how to make the judicial system a top campaign issue for voters.

“One of the things that we Democrats have a really hard time is connecting to people’s hearts instead of here,” Ms. Hirono responded, pointing at her head, according to a clip flagged by the Republic National Committee. “We’re really good at shoving out all the information that touch people here [points to the brain] but not here [points to the heart].”

R-i-ight. Because calling everyone who disagrees with you a racist or fascist is such a cerebral way to resolve policy disagreements. Because shouting “you’re starving children” and “you’re killing old people” is such a cerebral way to resolve budget battles involving less than 1/2% of federal spending. Because fleeing to safe spaces with coloring books, rainbows, and unicorns is such a cerebral way for college students and faculty to cope with the threat of hearing ideas that challenge them. Because trotting out “victims” with tear-jerking tales of woe is such a cerebral way of debating the merits of proposed legislation.

“We have to kind of tell everyone how smart we are, and so we have a tendency to be very left-brain,” the senator added.

Add Ms. Hirono: “We Democrats know so much” it can alienate voters.

I turn to the wisdom of Ronaldus Magnus:

It isn’t so much that liberals are ignorant. It’s just that they know so many things that aren’t so.

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Montana LP Senate candidate decides not to help Tester get re-elected

Posted by Richard on November 2, 2018

Rick Breckenridge, the Libertarian candidate for Montana Senator Jon Tester’s seat, may have just ensured that Tester is finally retired:

Ever wonder how Senator Jon Tester, a Beltway swamp creature who voted against the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh and famously stays in lockstep with his fellow Democrats on immigration and gun control, keeps getting elected in a state like Montana? The answer is simple: the Libertarian Party usually nominates a spoiler who siphons enough votes from Tester’s GOP challengers that he wins by the skin of his teeth.

In 2012, for example, Libertarian Dan Cox garnered enough of the vote to allow Tester to eke out a 4 percent win. This year was no different — until yesterday — when Libertarian Rick Breckenridge decided to endorse Republican Matt Rosendale. The Libertarian has been pulling enough support in the polls to enable Tester to slither back to the swamp again. …

Breckenridge endorsed Rosendale in response to a “dark money group” mailer aimed at persuading conservatives to vote for the Libertarian. I guess he didn’t like feeling like he’s being used.

Tester’s re-election chances were also hurt recently due to a self-inflicted wound:

This is not Tester’s only PR problem. Having sent out mailers to voters suggesting that he was an avid hunter, it was recently discovered that he hasn’t had a hunting license in years. This damaged Tester’s credibility and made him the butt of more than one joke. Donald Trump, Jr. recently quipped, “That Senator won’t hunt.” …

So Montanans now know that Sen. Tester is either a liar or a poacher.

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A surprising revelation by Walker Stapleton

Posted by Richard on November 1, 2018

The other night, Next on 9News played an excerpt from Kyle Clark’s 13-minute interview with GOP gubernatorial candidate Walker Stapleton in which he revealed something that surprised me. Here’s the full interview, which is pretty interesting. The surprising revelation is in response to Kyle Clark’s last question at 11:37.

He’s got my vote. Low taxes and jam bands!

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Guess who’s meddling in US politics now

Posted by Richard on August 14, 2018

An investigation by the Daily Caller News Foundation reveals that Iranian nationals are posing as anti-immigrant Americans as part of a campaign to defeat the repeal of per-country caps on the number of employment-based green cards (permanent resident visas) issued to mostly H1B visa holders:

Iranian nationals are impersonating Americans online to demonize Indian immigrants as part of a lobbying campaign against proposed legislation in the House of Representatives, a Daily Caller News Foundation investigation has found.

Using Twitter usernames that read like foreign stereotypes of American names, they tweet obsessively at reporters and high-profile political figures about the threats they say Indian immigrants pose to America.

H.R. 392 enjoyed broad bipartisan support and has been incorporated into the Homeland Security appropriations bill as an amendment. Contrary to what many of the fake Americans’ tweets claim, it doesn’t increase either the number of H1B visas or the number of green cards issued. It simply eliminates the per-country limits on the latter.

To be clear, these people aren’t living in Iran and doing the bidding of the Mullahs. They’re Iranians who’ve fled from the Mullahs and are living in the US under non-permanent visas. Their greatest fear, I’m sure, is being forced to return to Iran. They’re desperate to not have their already slim chances at gaining the security of permanent residence status further eroded. So I’m quite sympathetic to their concerns.

But their tactic of ginning up anti-immigrant sentiment and encouraging the false belief that this legislation will lead to countless Indians taking “all the jobs of the US citizens” is deplorable.

Before I retired as a technical writer, I worked with a number of H1B visa holders from around the world, some of whom were lucky enough to eventually obtain green cards. They were, to a man and woman, highly skilled, valuable professionals in software engineering and related fields. On net, they didn’t “take Americans’ jobs”; they created far, far more jobs than they “took” by helping to develop new products and services (including innovative, patentable new technologies) that greatly improved video conferencing and collaboration, distance learning, etc. They were exactly the kind of people we should want to become Americans. The US would become wealthier (and create countless new good jobs) if it allowed more such people to come here. And to stay.

Probably the only thing I’ve ever agreed with Thomas Friedman about is his suggestion for an immigration compromise: build a high wall with wide gates. In other words, make it harder to come here illegally, but easier to come here legally.

Perhaps that would assuage the fears of these Iranians by making them feel less like they’re playing a zero-sum game rigged against them. Which they are.

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Another “do as I say, not as I do” Democrat

Posted by Richard on August 13, 2018

Episode #13,496 of Not The Onion:

She ran on responsible gun regulation, now she’s accused of killing her campaign treasurer

ATLANTA – A former Georgia Congressional candidate has been charged with murder after her former campaign treasurer was found dead inside her apartment.

Kellie Collins, of Thomason, turned herself into the McDuffie County Sheriff’s Office just as authorities in Aiken County, South Carolina found the body of Curtis Cain, Collins’ former campaign treasurer.

Investigators said Cain did not show up for work on Tuesday, so deputies went to his home to check on him. That’s when they found him dead from an apparent gunshot wound.

In 2017, Collins ran as a Democrat against incumbent Rep. Jody Hice, a Republican, for Georgia’s 10th District. She ultimately dropped out of the race, citing personal reasons.

During the race, she touted her support for responsible gun regulation to protect the community.

The typical gun banner wants to disarm you and me because we lack impulse control and might in a moment of rage shoot someone. That’s called projection.

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How to get liberals to like the GOP tax plan

Posted by Richard on December 23, 2017

It’s easy! Just don’t let them know it’s the GOP’s plan.


[YouTube link]

 
[YouTube link]

There’s nothing new about this phenomenon. Back before the election, Jimmy Kimmel did a couple of similar “man/woman in the street” interviews attributing Trump’s tax proposals and some Trump quotes to Hillary. Predictably, Hillary supporters loved them.

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Liberal professors stunned by results of their sex-swap experiment

Posted by Richard on March 10, 2017

Two New York University professors conducted an interesting experiment to test this question: what if Trump had been female and Clinton had been male? Their assumption going in was that a  male acting like Hillary Clinton did in the debates would have been perceived more positively.

Tad Cronn explains the experiment and its surprising (to leftists) results:

The idea was simple: Re-create a portion of the presidential debates, putting Hillary’s exact words into the mouth of a man and putting Donald Trump’s exact words into the mouth of a woman.

To isolate the gender factor as much as possible, the two actors hired even went so far as to copy each candidate’s posture, movements and inflections.

The professors hoped to show that Trump’s aggressive manner would not have been acceptable to viewers coming from a woman, while Hillary’s presentation would have won her fans if she were a man.

Upon showing the resulting video to audiences, the results were eye-opening. The male version of Hillary came across as an even bigger pompous jackass, while the female Trump won over viewers with her feistiness and courage.

“We both thought that the inversion would confirm our liberal assumption—that no one would have accepted Trump’s behavior from a woman, and that the male Clinton would seem like the much stronger candidate,” said Professor Joe Salvatore. “But we kept checking in with each other and realized that this disruption—a major change in perception—was happening. I had an unsettled feeling the whole way through.”

Cronn closes with an intriguing thought:

 I wonder, if anyone was brave enough to try it, if a similar experiment involving race would finally show liberals that, yes, it really was Obama’s policies that people hated.

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Jill Stein’s great public service

Posted by Richard on December 15, 2016

Americans interested in fair and honest elections, and especially voters in Michigan, owe Green Party candidate Jill Stein thanks. Per Americans for Limited Government’s NetRightDaily:

Jill Stein and her puppet master Hillary Clinton’s effort to stop the certification of enough Trump delegates to disrupt the Electoral College has run aground in the most delightful way.

In Michigan, where Trump has been certified the winner in spite of Stein’s efforts, Wayne County (Detroit), where Clinton overwhelmingly won, has come under fire explicitly due to the recount.  Turns out in 37 percent of the Detroit precincts more votes were cast than the number of people who showed up to the polls to vote. No one would have noticed if not for the personal enrichment recall scheme of the former Green Party presidential candidate.

The Detroit News quotes Krista Haroutunian, the chairwoman of the Wayne County Board of Canvassers as saying, “There’s always going to be small problems to some degree, but we didn’t expect the degree of problem we saw in Detroit. This isn’t normal.”

Now Wayne County officials will be subjected to an audit by the Michigan Secretary of State Ruth Johnson’s office, the exact kind of electoral proctology exam that every local official fears.

To make matters worse for Democrats in the state, Stein’s broad claims of voter fraud convinced the GOP majority in the state legislature to respond by passing voter identification legislation.  The exact type of legislation that the left has vehemently opposed.  Talk about open mouth, insert foot.

It’s a shame that Stein didn’t demand a recount in Illinois. It might have been quite interesting to see what such an effort revealed in Chicago. Although I suspect the crooked pols in Chicago are better at covering their tracks than those in Detroit.

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A reason to celebrate

Posted by Richard on November 9, 2016

No, I’m not celebrating because The Donald was elected. He wasn’t in my list of top ten candidates for president. If I’d bothered to put together a list of my top 100 (or 1000) candidates, he wouldn’t have been in that list either.

I’m celebrating because Felonia McPantsuit (as Kurt Schlichter dubbed her) won’t be bringing her toxic, Chavista-like mixture of unbridled corruption and radical leftist ideology to the White House. And won’t be carting out yet more of its furnishings after four or eight years.

Oh, yeah, and I’m celebrating because … no hanging chads!!

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Apparently, “spirit cooking” isn’t about cooking with booze

Posted by Richard on November 5, 2016

The hashtag #SpiritCooking keeps popping up in my Twitter timeline, with references to Wikileaks, John Podesta, and the Clinton campaign. So when I saw a YouTube video about it, I checked it out.

The guy who posted it, Mark Dice, appears to be a nutcase. But the information about Marina Abramovic, who is clearly a nutcase, appears to be true. Her email inviting John Podesta to a Spirit Cooking dinner also appears to be legitimate, and strongly suggests that he too is a nutcase.

I don’t freak out worrying about Satanists (or see anything specifically Satanic in this), but I think it’s pretty amusing. And another interesting data point about the kinds of people running our country. Enjoy.

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Read Scott Adams’ Blog

Posted by Richard on November 4, 2016

If you haven’t been reading Dilbert creator Scott Adams’ blog, you’ve been missing out on the most interesting contrarian commentaries of the election campaign.

I was motivated to post this by his post Unhypnotizing a Clinton Supporter, but he’s since added a new post about Trump’s “closing argument” final campaign ad.

You should read both. But really, just hit that first link to his blog’s home page. Then scroll down and read as much as you have time for.

UPDATE: I guess, since I’ve decided to vote for the asshole over the felon, I should go ahead and embed the Trump ad video. Especially since YouTube has warned me to “think twice before sharing” it.

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