Jay is away this week. Charlie Sykes and Peter Wehner join Mona to evaluate the impact of the Comey hearings and discuss the broader questions facing conservatives in the age of Trump.

Music: Brahms. Variations on a theme by Paganini

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  1. Eugene Kriegsmann Member

    As a reaction to the overdone response of the Left to Trump, my hackles tend to rise whenever I hear the kind of things being said here. However, they are irrefutable. Like Bill Clinton, Trump is having a very demeaning effect on the culture. As was so well stated during the podcast, this is no longer a binary choice. Trump was elected, Hillary consigned to the trash heap where she belongs. We now have to hold Trump accountable. The mere fact that the Left hates him is insufficient reason to justify the multiplicity of problems he is having in his new role. The standard by which we judge American presidents cannot be allowed to slip into a range where Trump’s boorishness, ignorance, nepotism and dishonesty is justified by the appointment of one Supreme Court Justice, and the reversal of a few Obama administration EOs. Where are the promised changes? Is anyone discussing the Wall any longer or the moving of the American Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, or getting so tire of winning, and on and on.

    I have listened to Comey and a fair number of commentators on Comey’s testimony. I find him a consummate politician which is not a compliment. I also found his description of his interaction with Trump totally believable. Trump’s inability to give one clear reason for his firing of Comey is a demonstration of his rather deranged world view. It speaks to a man who is way over his head.

    Should he be impeached. No. However, Republicans need to hold him accountable to a standard, not defend him reflexively as so many have. He will likely be in office for the next four years. Even though he is being subjected to something pretty close to the way in which G.W. Bush was during his first term, Bush was a far more effective administrator, and a man of much greater integrity, so defending Trump on the basis of leftist attacks lacks a grounding in reality.

    Nominating Trump was a mistake. Electing him to office over Hillary Clinton wasn’t. However, allowing him to run the White House and his administration like his own personal Fiefdom would be another, very real mistake, both for the country and the culture.

    • #1
    • June 8, 2017, at 5:08 PM PDT
    • 9 likes
  2. patpongmike Inactive

    Another reason for me to not renew my ricochet membership.

    • #2
    • June 8, 2017, at 6:54 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  3. Tom Meyer, Common Citizen Contributor

    patpongmike (View Comment):
    Another reason for me to not renew my ricochet membership.

    If you don’t like a particular podcast, you don’t have to listen to it.

    • #3
    • June 8, 2017, at 7:27 PM PDT
    • 5 likes
  4. Damocles Inactive

    Tom Meyer, Common Citizen (View Comment):

    patpongmike (View Comment):
    Another reason for me to not renew my ricochet membership.

    If you don’t like a particular podcast, you don’t have to listen to it.

    I’m happy to support lots of view points, but not this. Just letting you know as a paying customer.

    • #4
    • June 8, 2017, at 8:13 PM PDT
    • 5 likes
  5. Lily Bart Inactive

    Tom Meyer, Common Citizen (View Comment):

    patpongmike (View Comment):
    Another reason for me to not renew my ricochet membership.

    If you don’t like a particular podcast, you don’t have to listen to it.

    I confess, I don’t. Poor Mona has gotten to be like the neighbor you try to avoid if you can. However, we subscribers do assess from time to time the value added by these podcasts to our lives. So, since your attention, Mr Meyer, is already here on this thread, I want to tell you (Ricochet) that I’m distressed and more than a little irritated by the AEI podcast this site has uploaded for our consumption. I was shocked by the one-sided, uncritical presentation of a big government mandate program. I cannot imagine what Ricochet’s objective is in pushing this near-propaganda. The topic itself is not the problem, debate is a good thing, but it was the unbalanced presentation of the information that is a problem. Do you review these podcasts before you present them to us? Do you support this type of one-sided presentation?

    Anyway, I apologize for hijacking this thread, but that podcast and its “tone” upset me, and I’m concerned about what it says about Ricochet, and didn’t quite know how to complain to ‘management’ about it.

    • #5
    • June 8, 2017, at 8:15 PM PDT
    • 4 likes
  6. Lily Bart Inactive

    Eugene Kriegsmann (View Comment):
    Nominating Trump was a mistake. Electing him to office over Hillary Clinton wasn’t.

    Yes, this is my view as well. I did not support Trump as a nominee, but once nominate,d it was clear to me that I needed to vote Trump over Hillary. A Hillary presidency might have seem more calm from the exterior, but she’d have done irreversible damage, imo. Trump will nominate better people, and work to reserve some of the damaging regulations and EOs. It’ll be a bumpy time, but I prefer it to Hillary’s undermining the foundations of our country – with the support and complicity of the media.

    However, allowing him to run the White House and his administration like his own personal Fiefdom would be another, very real mistake, both for the country and the culture.

    Part of my ‘calculation’ was that Trump would receive oversight from the media and other government offices. Based on recent events, I concluded Hillary would not. We cannot have a leader who is not held accountable, as I believe Hillary would not have been.

    Trump is having a very demeaning effect on the culture.

    The sad thing is that our culture was already demeaned. I see Trump as a reflection of our degradation, not the source of it.

    • #6
    • June 8, 2017, at 8:39 PM PDT
    • 6 likes
  7. Tom Meyer, Common Citizen Contributor

    Damocles (View Comment):

    Tom Meyer, Common Citizen (View Comment):

    patpongmike (View Comment):
    Another reason for me to not renew my ricochet membership.

    If you don’t like a particular podcast, you don’t have to listen to it.

    I’m happy to support lots of view points, but not this. Just letting you know as a paying customer.

    Well, I’m not a paid employee.

    • #7
    • June 8, 2017, at 9:02 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  8. Tom Meyer, Common Citizen Contributor

    Lily Bart (View Comment):
    So, since your attention, Mr Meyer, is already here on this thread, I want to tell you (Ricochet) that I’m distressed and more than a little irritated by the AEI podcast this site has uploaded for our consumption. I was shocked by the one-sided, uncritical presentation of a big government mandate program. I cannot imagine what Ricochet’s objective is in pushing this near-propaganda. The topic itself is not the problem, debate is a good thing, but it was the unbalanced presentation of the information that is a problem. Do you review these podcasts before you present them to us? Do you support this type of one-sided presentation?

    I’d be happy to pass that on but, again, I’m no longer on staff.

    • #8
    • June 8, 2017, at 9:05 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  9. Lily Bart Inactive

    Tom Meyer, Common Citizen (View Comment):

    Damocles (View Comment):

    Tom Meyer, Common Citizen (View Comment):

    patpongmike (View Comment):
    Another reason for me to not renew my ricochet membership.

    If you don’t like a particular podcast, you don’t have to listen to it.

    I’m happy to support lots of view points, but not this. Just letting you know as a paying customer.

    Well, I’m not a paid employee.

    Sorry, I’d forgotten you’d stepped down. To whom should I express my displeasure?

    • #9
    • June 8, 2017, at 9:05 PM PDT
    • Like
  10. Tom Meyer, Common Citizen Contributor

    For what it’s worth, I thought this was a disappointing episode. While I agreed with much of what was said, the lack of counterpoint was a disappointment.

    • #10
    • June 8, 2017, at 9:07 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  11. Tom Meyer, Common Citizen Contributor

    Lily Bart (View Comment):

    Sorry, I’d forgotten you’d stepped down. To whom should I express my displeasure?

    A message to either Jon or Yeti would likely do you well.

    • #11
    • June 8, 2017, at 9:09 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  12. patpongmike Inactive

    Used to listen to Mona, and Jay. The first sign of trouble was Mona’s embrace of the anthropogenic global warming hoax, but I still listened. Then, during the primary, she became a rabid never-Trumper. She got the last election cycle completely wrong. A few month’s ago, Jay’s nazi comparison of Trump’s inauguration speech was the last straw (I had tuned into the podcast to hear Victor Hanson). I am sick to death of Mona’s condescending, school-mommy voice. And she is consistently wrong. So, @Tom Meyer, Common Citizen, the majority of podcasts on Ricochet belong in the toilette. And I will not be paying for this anymore. There is better information on youtube.

    • #12
    • June 9, 2017, at 1:03 AM PDT
    • 3 likes
  13. Eugene Kriegsmann Member

    I find the idea of banning particular podcasts because some members find them offensive to be quite absurd. There are several podcasts which I choose not to listen to for a variety of reasons. I listen to most, however. I find all, whether I am in agreement with the hosts and guests or not, to be informative and enjoyable. AEI podcasts were an excellent addition. I listened to the second in the series on the Six Day War yesterday. When I saw that the person interviewed was a Palestinian Arab I was a bit unsure I wanted to listen. I am glad I did. It was well worth the listen. There are few opportunities to hear the Arab side from an intelligent, rational person. Though I continue to disagee with much of what he said, I felt there was much of value in what he said. As a rule, this has been my experience with a lot of the more controversial podcasts.

    I have always enjoyed Mona and Jay. At times Mona seems a bit strident in her anti-Trump stance, but I felt the same as she when Trump was running for the nomination. My views of Trump are unchanged, but I am trying to get the best from a situation which is out of my control to change. I find the attacks on Mona and Jay pretty appalling. Both have been staunch conservatives for many years. Trump, on the other hand, has been a Democrat, Liberal, libertine, and a disgraceful businessman involved in a series of unsavory deals like his “University.” I grant that his is certainly preferable to Hillary and a goodly portion of the Democrat party, but he is no knight in shining armor defending conservative values. He is, for the most part, a poorly manufactured tool that might or might not serve the purposes of Republican/Conservative party which chose and elected him to office, a bit like a screwdriver whose handle is used to hammer in a nail when no hammer is available.

    Since Jon Gabriel and Yeti were mentioned as ones to which one should express his/her displeasure with a particular podcast, let my vote be counted as one that says, keep all the podcasts, no matter the content or displeasure of a few who would rather ban free speech than support it. I want to hear all sides of the Republican viewpoint so that I can make an informed judgment on the various issues facing us. I don’t want Ricochet to become an echo chamber.

    • #13
    • June 9, 2017, at 5:52 AM PDT
    • 6 likes
  14. Lily Bart Inactive

    Eugene Kriegsmann (View Comment):
    I find the idea of banning particular podcasts because some members find them offensive to be quite absurd. There are several podcasts which I choose not to listen to for a variety of reasons.

    Excuse me, I’m not against banning podcasts! I’m against pushing propaganda, which that particular podcast was -a one-sided, unexamined discussion of a complex financial concept. I find that profoundly disappointing.

    …..displeasure of a few who would rather ban free speech that support it.

    Its interesting how, in the course of a discussion, people like to ‘assign’ you an opinion and then argue against that. Of course its easier to win the debate when you pick your opponent’s positions! Let me stand in support of ‘free speech’ and vigorous debate, but against one-sided presentations of complex and divisive topics, as was presented in that particular AEI podcast.

    I want to hear all sides of the Republican viewpoint so that I can make an informed judgment on the various issues facing us

    If this is true, you’ll find that podcast disappointing as well.

    Its not my intent to request a banning of anything, but just to ask Ricochet to have some basic standards instead of just throwing a bunch of podcasts at us willy-nilly. I support quality over quantity.

    • #14
    • June 9, 2017, at 6:14 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  15. Eugene Kriegsmann Member

    Lily Bart (View Comment):
    Let me stand in support of ‘free speech’ and vigorous debate, but against one-sided presentations of complex and divisive topics, as was presented in that particular AEI podcast.

    I assume that since you don’t like one-sided podcasts that you would also choose to remove The Harvard Lunch Club as well?

    I disagree with you in this regard. An argument like the one that was presented on the Six Day War podcast by the Palestinian was one-sided. That is fine. I expected it to be. I listen that podcast, and I listen to others with opposing views. I don’t need every podcast to present both sides of an argument. People have differing opinions. I want to hear them, all of them. I like Dennis Prager. I like David French. They don’t have to sit down together and debate their differing views for me to determine which side I agree with.

    Unlike the Democrats, Republicans don’t have a partyline that everyone learns and repeats mindlessly. There is an amazing spectrum of ideas, all valid to one extent or another. This is a wonderful site in that it offers an opportunity to hear all of those arguments in a civil and respectful manner.

    • #15
    • June 9, 2017, at 6:33 AM PDT
    • 3 likes
  16. Jager Coolidge
    JagerJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Tom Meyer, Common Citizen (View Comment):
    For what it’s worth, I thought this was a disappointing episode. While I agreed with much of what was said, the lack of counterpoint was a disappointment.

    The guys on the Commentary podcast have never hid their problems with Trump. They at least attempted to point out that there were some good things for Trump the testimony and some bad things. (this is my own position as well).

    This podcast held intellectual honest up as a value but seemed to be falling short. They hate Trump as President and thus they look at everything in the last six months from the worst possible light and believe anything that could confirm their preconception.

    I would rather not be told that my willingness to over look, junk from anonymous sources that doesn’t affect my personal life at all, means I am selling bits of my soul.

    • #16
    • June 9, 2017, at 6:33 AM PDT
    • 2 likes
  17. Lily Bart Inactive

    ….also, as said above, people assess from time to time whether their paid subscriptions are providing the value they were seeking. Sometimes something you’ve enjoyed and found useful in the past just isn’t providing value to you anymore – which is what I think @PatPongMike is saying. The Truth is, Mona has been on essentially the same topic for some time now. At some point you say to yourself, “I’ve heard this all before, I don’t need to hear it again”. This is not NOT censorship, nor is it refusing to hear ‘the other side’, its more like editing or curating – at some point in life, you don’t need to keep covering the same ground over and over again. Really. Its unproductive.

    • #17
    • June 9, 2017, at 6:40 AM PDT
    • Like
  18. Lily Bart Inactive

    Eugene Kriegsmann (View Comment):
    I assume that since you don’t like one-sided podcasts that you would also choose to remove The Harvard Lunch Club as well?

    Are you assigning me a view point again? I don’t actually listen to that podcast much – but I have once or twice, they definitely held a particular viewpoint but seemed congenial and had the ability to laugh at themselves. But their podcast is an ‘opinion show’. Mona’s show is also opinion driven – I feel she’s covering the same ground over and over – nothing really new – no need to listen, but I don’t support pulling it.

    However, the AEI podcast I am referencing presented material from economic “experts” quoting studies and figures, but was concerningly one-sided (disclosure: I’m an economist who runs models and projections – trust me, the way the material was presented was in a concerningly un-examined way). Ricochet just throwing a bunch of podcast our way – including unexamined ‘expert testimony’ is irresponsible. And irritating.

    I support ‘hearing all sides’ – the podcast I’m criticizing was the antithesis of that. And since it was ‘expert testimony’ not just an opinion show, this presents a problem.

    • #18
    • June 9, 2017, at 6:53 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  19. OwnedByDogs Coolidge

    If you didn’t like this podcast you are assigning Trump virtues that he obviously does not possess. He’s better than Hillary, but that is not saying much.

    • #19
    • June 9, 2017, at 7:22 AM PDT
    • Like
  20. Lily Bart Inactive

    JuliaBlaschke (View Comment):
    If you didn’t like this podcast you are assigning Trump virtues that he obviously does not possess

    ???? That’s quite a leap you make there.

    • #20
    • June 9, 2017, at 7:26 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  21. OwnedByDogs Coolidge

    Lily Bart (View Comment):

    JuliaBlaschke (View Comment):
    If you didn’t like this podcast you are assigning Trump virtues that he obviously does not possess

    ???? That’s quite a leap you make there.

    I don’t think so. What is tiring and unproductive are posts that complain about podcasts and threats to leave.

    • #21
    • June 9, 2017, at 7:57 AM PDT
    • 2 likes
  22. Jager Coolidge
    JagerJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    JuliaBlaschke (View Comment):
    If you didn’t like this podcast you are assigning Trump virtues that he obviously does not possess. He’s better than Hillary, but that is not saying much.

    What virtues do you assume I am assigning Trump? That he is not the end of the Republic, or America or the World, is a pretty low bar I am setting to declare this podcast unrealistically negative.

    Because I don’t accept every overblown negative story about Trump, I am selling a piece of my soul?

    I do not need to positively assign any virtue what so ever to Trump to find a conversation, that takes every negative story as fact and paints it in the worst possible way, is an intellectually dishonest waste of my hour.

    • #22
    • June 9, 2017, at 8:04 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  23. Lily Bart Inactive

    JuliaBlaschke (View Comment):

    Lily Bart (View Comment):

    JuliaBlaschke (View Comment):
    If you didn’t like this podcast you are assigning Trump virtues that he obviously does not possess

    ???? That’s quite a leap you make there.

    I don’t think so. What is tiring and unproductive are posts that complain about podcasts and threats to leave.

    Telling people that you find their complaints tiring is legitimate, but but that’s not what you accused people of.

    However, if people are getting frustrated with something, its legitimate to provide feedback to Ricochet.

    • #23
    • June 9, 2017, at 8:04 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  24. Jager Coolidge
    JagerJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    JuliaBlaschke (View Comment):

    Lily Bart (View Comment):

    JuliaBlaschke (View Comment):
    If you didn’t like this podcast you are assigning Trump virtues that he obviously does not possess

    ???? That’s quite a leap you make there.

    I don’t think so. What is tiring and unproductive are posts that complain about podcasts and threats to leave.

    Isn’t that kind of the point of a discussion based web site,to discuss the posted content, to praise what you agree with and complain about what you disagree with?

    Should those whose disagree with you post that your support of the podcast is tiring and unproductive?

    • #24
    • June 9, 2017, at 8:11 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  25. Eugene Kriegsmann Member

    Lily Bart (View Comment):
    Are you assigning me a view point again? I don’t actually listen to that podcast much – but I have once or twice, they definitely held a particular viewpoint but seemed congenial and had the ability to laugh at themselves. But their podcast is an ‘opinion show’.

    I don’t mean to assign any viewpoint to you. Sorry if it seems so. I do listen to the HLC podcast every week even though I disagree with a good deal of what they say. I believe it is important to hear both sides of an argument even when a particular view is repetitive. I hear a great deal of pro-Trump stuff. There is a great deal of it I really want to believe because I want our side to win. I think that they refer to that as “confirmation bias.” I like listening to Mona because she reminds me of the unpleasant facts about Trump that were so obvious during the campaign. I posted this quote from Jim Geraghty on another thread, so forgive me if I put it here as well since it affirms what I am saying here.

    “Comey painted an ugly portrait of the president as flagrantly and shamelessly dishonest, oblivious to traditional limits on presidential power, obsessed with personal loyalty to him, having no regard for the independence of law enforcement and the justice system, petty, micromanaging, erratic, mercurial, and vindictive. This description of Trump is undoubtedly shocking to all of the Americans who were in comas for the entirety of the 2016 election.”

    It would be nice if Trump hadn’t shown those characteristics so plainly during the debates and elsewhere. Being reminded of them is a good reality check. It tends to pull us back into actuality of what we saw and felt during the primaries, those of us with a solid grounding in conservative principles.

    • #25
    • June 9, 2017, at 8:15 AM PDT
    • 2 likes
  26. Profile Photo Member

    Charlie Sykes on Scott Walker during the presidential primaries: “I think the nativist rhetoric does not come naturally to him.”

    This is about continued open borders, not conservatism.

    • #26
    • June 9, 2017, at 8:24 AM PDT
    • 5 likes
  27. Damocles Inactive

    JuliaBlaschke (View Comment):

    I don’t think so. What is tiring and unproductive are posts that complain about podcasts and threats to leave.

    Thankfully we have witty repartee such as this to break up the monotony!

    • #27
    • June 9, 2017, at 8:37 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  28. Damocles Inactive

    Jager (View Comment):
    This podcast held intellectual honest up as a value but seemed to be falling short. They hate Trump as President and thus they look at everything in the last six months from the worst possible light and believe anything that could confirm their preconception.

    Yep, when you start with a particular preconception it’s easy for your brain to fill in the pieces it needs to justify that preconception.

    Did you know Babe Ruth was a terrible ball player? He failed at bat over 60% of the time!

    • #28
    • June 9, 2017, at 8:44 AM PDT
    • 2 likes
  29. outlaws6688 Inactive

    [redacted]

    • #29
    • June 9, 2017, at 9:29 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  30. Lois Lane Coolidge

    The most striking thing from this podcast was the presidential approval rating.

    Did she say 34%?

    Oi.

    I’m sure it’s all just Mona’s fault. ;)

    Bless.

    For the record, for the powers that be, I enjoyed listening to the podcast.

    • #30
    • June 9, 2017, at 1:59 PM PDT
    • 1 like