While British Prime Minister Boris Johnson first bowed before the altar of the NHS, above and before the police and fire services, and placed the British military members* and their families last, as has been true since Kipling wrote “Tommy,” it is remarkable that he called Christmas for what it is, a celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ, and especially called attention to the worldwide plight of persecuted Christians, many celebrating Christmas in prison cells! This prime minister, with his clear governing majority, pledged “as Prime Minister, that is something I want to change.” He also offered timely and sage advice to everyone around the world, urging domestic peace and goodwill: “Try not to have too many arguments with the in-laws, or anyone else.”More
Courtesy of Al Gorithm over at “You” Tube:More
If you ever want to drive me insane, you don’t need to use the Chinese water torture on me. You just need to force me to watch the ineptness of the House and Senate and the histrionics and hand-wringing regarding impeachment. But I’m begging Mitch McConnell to put us all out of our misery. The Editorial Staff of the Wall Street Journal (sorry—it’s probably behind a paywall) describes the process to set us all free. Mr. McConnell is ignoring the hysterics of Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi. He seems to be doing that with a twinkle in his eye. In fact, he may already be contemplating these steps recommended by the WSJ. So what is he up against? I’m describing the basic process here.
- Nancy Pelosi insists that the articles of impeachment must be formally transmitted to the Senate. Not true:
There’s nothing in the Constitution that says impeachment requires a formal transmittal of the articles to the Senate, whether by sedan chair or overnight Fed Ex, or that the House must appoint impeachment managers. The parchment merely says the House has sole power over impeachment and the Senate the sole power to try an impeachment. The act of impeachment is the vote.
It was a heart-filling experience, one that will become an indelible memory in my budding Jewish experience. I attended the wedding of iWe and Mrs. iWe’s son #2 and his bride.
I was a bit nervous about attending, fighting off a low-level anxiety about potentially “doing the wrong thing.” A few days before the wedding, however, I realized how silly and self-centered my concerns were. I was not attending this blessed occasion to make some kind of impression on those who were there; I was attending to contribute joy (simcha), offer blessings and goodwill with everyone else for the bride and groom. Holding that wish in my heart was the only mission I needed, and the one that guided me through the day.More
Friends, the ACF brings you Chris Wolfe for Christmas–we talk about Die Hard, the story of an unexpected redeemer coming to deliver us from temptation in winter’s peril. No, really–Chris argues that we should take Sgt. Al Powell as–well, ourselves, the audience, who root for John McClane, but are powerless to do anything ourselves, but yearn to help him–Sgt. Al redeems himself in the course of the movie, as is indeed America redeemed by withstanding the corruption foisted on us by elite institutions that arrogantly remove from us any self-government, all the while exposing us to violence and lawlessness…More
The reputation of the Federal Bureau of Investigation is in the tank and I see little reason for optimism for the future. And FBI Director Christopher Wray is only making the situation worse. Following IG Michael Horowitz’s report on FISA abuse, Wray promptly called for sweeping changes of the FBI’s procedures in submitting applications to the FISA court.
Actually, that’s not true. Wray’s proposed changes ensure that nothing much will change, primarily because he hasn’t dealt with the root problems.More
While the latest on impeachment continues to dominate headlines, two news items should have our interest before they go the way of the 24-hour cycle.
First, there’s the new episode of “Marvel’s Hero Project”—available on Disney Plus—that celebrates a 12-year-old boy who identifies as a girl and testified before New Jersey’s legislature in favor of a bill mandating an “LBGTQ history” curriculum to be taught throughout the state’s public schools.More
Oh, nice. You and Gorsuch.More
The Framers did not intend the impeachment power to give Congress supremacy, in the form of being able to harass and paralyze the Courts or the president over policy differences, let alone raw political will. Nevertheless, Congress has acted, almost from the beginning, with selective contempt for the Constitution, both legislatively and in its employment of the impeachment power. There is really nothing new under the sun, including what the current majority party in the House of Representatives is doing…and it is still contemptuous of the Constitution.
Take a step back from the current tempest in the Congressional teapot and consider the facts laid out in 1992 by Chief Justice William Rehnquist in Grand Inquests: the Historic Impeachments of Justice Samuel Chase and President Andrew Johnson. The Chief Justice published this very approachable book the year that William Jefferson Clinton beat President Bush the First. Taking his book as a guide to the subject and the actors, some focused searching on the internet yields plenty of historical data and documents. Consider just the first major impeachment, along with a prelude, at the dawn of the 19th Century.More
Since October 2018, we’ve worked on getting a new roof, seeking compensation for a driveway that was seriously damaged in the effort, and finally filing for a judgment to get money back that we’d spent to repair the driveway. My husband took on most of the tedious work to collect evidence, file the case, and appear at mediation. He used the best of his engineering skills and charm to do it.
But that is not the most fascinating part of this story….More
Having an infant at Christmastime was something that immensely impacted my perspective of the holiday. My eldest daughter was six months old during that December, when I truly grasped the significance of the incarnation. Suddenly, it was clear that the festivities and lights and celebrations and gifts are because Jesus, the infinite Creator God, the second Person of the eternal Trinity, became flesh and blood.
Jesus was a tiny, helpless baby just like my sweet, precious baby.More
Fifty-three Christmas Eves ago, I first saw an episode of an exciting new show that hadn’t yet caught on with viewers, despite great reviews in TV Guide and elsewhere. Mission: Impossible was the final entry in what had been a mid-Sixties spy craze on TV and in the movies, all of them of course due to the huge success of James Bond. Spies had never been big box office before Bond, but for a few years they were as common as Star Wars rip-offs would be fifteen years later. Mission: Impossible was unusual for the new genre; no sex, very little violence, jumpy editing that was too fast for most casual TV viewers a half century ago, with complicated, half-explained plots that you had to follow closely to figure out. Above all, its main characters were quite deliberately left blank: you didn’t really know who they were, all you ever knew about them is what they did. Yet Mission: Impossible became by far the most successful and long lasting of all the TV spy shows of the ‘60s. Variety raved, “It looks like CBS finally found its U.N.C.L.E.”, referring to NBC’s hit spy show, then in its third year.
The Man From U.N.C.L.E., debuting in 1964, was the first of the TV spy bunch, boldly announced as “Ian Fleming for television!”, a claim that NBC and its producers, MGM, were forced to hastily retract after Bond’s producers and Fleming’s estate threatened to sue. That claim was a lie, or more forgivably, an awkward exaggeration, and like Mission, U.N.C.L.E. was slow to find an audience. But once it did, it was a huge, if short-lived pop culture phenomenon. Its stars, Robert Vaughn and David McCallum, were mobbed everywhere they traveled. They got bushels of fan mail every week. MGM even happily publicized hundreds of fan letters addressed simply to “The Gun”, U.N.C.L.E.’s custom-crafted handgun, accessorized with a custom stock, barrel extender, silencer, even an infrared sniper scope. Millions of plastic replicas were among the most popular ‘60s Christmas toys for American boys. Could you imagine the reaction to that today?More
“Socialism violates at least three of the Ten Commandments: It turns government into God, it legalizes thievery and it elevates covetousness. Discussions of income inequality, after all, aren’t about prosperity but about petty spite. Why should you care how much money I make, so long as you are happy?” — Ben Shapiro
I’ve never heard socialism described this way, and it makes sense: anyone who is supposedly religious can’t subscribe to both socialism and religion. Well, of course, they can, but it must be difficult to ignore the cognitive dissonance.More
This year marked the 100th anniversary of observing what became Veterans’ Day in America. It was also the 75th anniversary of a series of critical battles and campaigns that sealed the Third Reich’s fate. In June, the western Allies gathered to remember the Normandy invasion. On December 16, there was another major commemoration, although not with all national leaders, remembering the battle that finally broke the Germans, the Battle of the Bulge.
On December 16, 1944, Hitler hurled his last, best troops, those who had survived the Russian meat grinder and the battering, fighting retreat from Normandy since June 1944, back through a weak point in the Allied front. Taking advantage of bad weather, suppressing American air superiority, and employing superior knowledge of local terrain, armored columns thrust deep through the Allies’ lines. Yet, the Allies were not going to break catastrophically and the Wehrmacht lacked the operational and strategic supply support needed to fully exploit any tactical or operational success. Nevertheless, the tactical situation became so desperate that the white Army leaders who had lied through their teeth, after World War I, about black men’s ability to be their peers in the infantry now called forward volunteers out of the support troops, filling in gaping holes with platoons of African American soldiers assigned to formerly all-white companies. Four years later, President Truman rejected “expert” opinion and ordered the complete racial desegregation of the armed forces with Executive Order 9981.More
One year ago, around midnight, as Saturday turned into Sunday the 16th of December, 2018, a gunman entered a small independent convenience store. The space inside is tight, very close quarters, and the clerk decided to fight for his life and his co-workers, instead of accepting whatever fate the thug decided. The clerk, Jose Alcaraz-Hernandez, lost his life, and a co-worker was seriously wounded. The crime has not been solved in the year since that night.
The large group of prayer candles and flowers gave way in fairly short order to a permanent wooden cross. The hand-painted cross outside the store tells us that Jose Hernandez was born November 18, 1964, and was killed on December 16, 2018. From a photograph put up in the first days, we know him to have been a grandfather. We know nothing of the killer. If the police know more, they are not saying so to the public.More
…does it make a sound?
Well, yes. Yes, it does. As much as I wish it weren’t so, there just isn’t a meaningful distinction between “sound” and “noise” that lets me get away with saying that someone has to perceive the former in order for it to have occurred.More
As we approach the year’s end, there is a titanic struggle taking place for the moral high ground of the country leading up to the 2020 presidential election. On the one side, the Democrats have succeeded on a wholly partisan vote in the House Judiciary Committee to forward two Articles of Impeachment to the full House of Representatives, where they will again be approved along strictly partisan lines.
At the same time, Inspector General Michael Horowitz published an exhaustive and mind-numbing Report that examined the FBI’s Crossfire Hurricane investigation of Russian influence on the 2016 election. Among other things, that investigation wrongly initiated surveillance of Carter Page who wrongly deemed to be a Russian agent. The IG’s Report relentlessly documented serious defects in the FBI’s investigation, including in its procedures for seeking warrants from the FISA Court.More
For the price of a movie ticket, you can stand up for truth, justice, and the American way! After Horowitz, we all knew how extensive the corruption and abuse of power was in the FBI, DOJ, and our national media. Two days later, Clint Eastwood released a movie exactly on topic, dramatically documenting earlier collusion between the same malevolent cast of characters. The response from Trump voters and supporters was telling.
The Democrats’ media wing told us that we should not support this movie. Now, with the Richard Jewell opening weekend box office counted, we know we let them win, again, just like we let them win 2018. Bank on the anti-Deplorable, anti-Trump selective hit job movie Bombshell to get plenty of support, reinforcing the left’s narrative. Trump voters can’t be bothered, and conservative media figures apparently are missing the significance, in the midst of the daily deluge of stories. So, Trump 2020 will not be Boris Johnson 2019. Change my mind this week: money talks, bull-Schiff walks.More
William Barr is undermining the actions and goals of the Progressives, and he knows exactly what he’s doing—and I hope he is loving every minute of it. He knew that accepting the job of Attorney General would be even more demanding than his stint as AG under President George H.W. Bush. Even a Justice Department official under Barr wondered why Barr would take the job:
The first reaction I had was, ‘Why in the world would Bill do this?’ said Timothy Flanigan, a top Justice Department official under Mr. Barr. ‘He’s doing this out of a sense of duty and patriotism. He probably sees this as, he really is the one person on the horizon who can step in with immediate credibility to the department and begin to restore the internal and external confidence.’
On Friday, 6 December, Col. Charles McGee went flying for his 100th birthday. He actually flew the aircraft, with a copilot, and walked on and off the aircraft firm of voice and stride. Colonel McGee started flying in World War II, then stayed in the cockpit for the next thirty years, seeing combat in both Korea and Vietnam. He holds the US Air Force record, to this day, of 409 combat missions. As we commemorate the 75th anniversaries of D-Day at Normandy and the Battle of the Bulge this year, we note the number of World War II veterans rapidly falling to the far end of the actuarial tables. Accordingly, each one who remains with us, still of firm mind and voice, becomes more of a treasure.More
President Trump’s White House team has been doing an excellent job with the official Whitehouse website and YouTube channel, posting relevant information, attractively presented. Here are snapshots of the homepage captured Wednesday, December 11:
“If we want to make America great again, we’re gonna have to make healthcare well again.” — Katy Talento
Or, we can call it too hard to do, take two aspirin, and call Doctor Ocasio-Cortez in a year.More
As a child, I wasn’t much interested in taking risks, especially physical risks. I never climbed mountains, shot a gun, raced a car, or jumped off roofs. Those activities were for crazy people. I much preferred playing it safe, protecting my physical well-being as a matter of course. I looked both ways when I crossed the street, probably at a very early age, and have no scars from touching a hot stove. I’ve never broken a bone or even sprained an ankle.
But at the age of 54 and 50, respectively, my husband and I decided to go on a trek in Nepal. I was thrilled and terrified about the thought of sudden winter storms, washed-out bridges, freezing cold, falling into an “eastern toilet,” dysentery, and other maladies that could show up on such an adventurous (and dangerous) trip. With my husband’s encouragement, I decided that if we prepared well, we’d be fine.More
“We’re not going to cut corners…I see this thing [the Durham investigation] reaching an important watershed in the late spring [of 2020], perhaps early summer.” — Attorney General William Barr
Credit where credit is due. NBC News’ Pete Williams just conducted an entirely professional interview of Attorney General William Barr, 10 December 2019. Then NBC posted the entire interview to their YouTube channel, not chopped up to match their narrative.More
“What I don’t want to do is restrict law-abiding citizens from their Second Amendment rights, which are focused on freedom. I point that out all the time. Remember, bad guys aren’t stupid, they’re just bad.” — Jim Jordan
This quote represents Jim Jordan at his best: he doesn’t mince words. At a time when gun control advocates are regularly trying to destroy the Second Amendment, gun owners need to be vigilant about those actions and speak out; gun owners are the very people who will be in danger. When those who want gun control allude to confiscating guns, they refuse to recognize that the only people who will be disarmed are the legal gun owners. They can’t possibly believe that the criminals who likely acquired their guns illegally will line up with everyone else to relinquish their guns.More