Can I Get A Witness?

Do not adjust your podcast app or web browser, you are in fact seeing this week’s Ricochet Podcast drop a day early. And we’ve got a good one for you: Chief Impeachment Pundit John Yoo stops by to grade Alan Dershowitz’s impeachment defense arguments and then The Wall Street Journal’s Kim Strassel gives no you-know-what’s about the Democrats and their tactics. Also, our crew punditizes (we just made that word up) on the Middle East, Lileks gives Post of The Week honors to @henrycastaigne for his Epic Crossover Event: Dr. Who Battles the Gods of the Copybook Headings, we’ve got a new Long Poll question, and a new jingle! 

Music from this week’s episode: Can I Get A Witness by Marvin Gaye

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  1. kedavis Member

    Ricochet Audio Network: we’ve got a new Long Poll question

    It would be better if there were additional Yes and No options with/for “It doesn’t matter how it affects Trump.”

    • #1
    • January 30, 2020, at 4:36 PM PST
    • 8 likes
  2. kedavis Member

    And I’m curious if James has a response to my comment on the previous show, Trump = Picard?

    • #2
    • January 30, 2020, at 5:04 PM PST
    • Like
  3. Icarus213 Thatcher

    I’m sorry, but James’ “it was a quid-Pol-quo” pun at Minute 32 was unacceptably underacknowledged, and I insist that we go back in time and correct this immediately to give it the praise it deserves.

    • #3
    • January 30, 2020, at 6:10 PM PST
    • 8 likes
  4. kedavis Member

    And James posits that voters won’t be willing to give up a booming economy to vote for Sanders or Warren, etc. Hopefully correct, but don’t underestimate the ability of people to vote contrary to evidence. I think many people believe that if Bernie Sanders won in November, the current economic success would continue, PLUS they could get all the free stuff he promises.

    I even have neighbors who seem to believe that the current booming economy, low unemployment, etc, are not actually due to Trump and/or conservative policies. They claim it’s actually due to “leftover Obama.” And if Warren or Sanders etc were elected in November and the economy crashes, they would believe that was “leftover Trump.”

    • #4
    • January 30, 2020, at 6:32 PM PST
    • 5 likes
  5. kedavis Member

    James: Rush stole borrowed “skulls full of mush” from Professor Kingsfield.

    p.s. I hate wings. Sorry, Butcher Box.

    • #5
    • January 30, 2020, at 6:42 PM PST
    • Like
  6. kedavis Member

    Wait, what? “No tie-breaker in the Senate,” Kimberly Strassel? Does the VP not get the tie-breaking vote in these matters?

    • #6
    • January 30, 2020, at 6:58 PM PST
    • Like
  7. Bishop Wash Member

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Wait, what? “No tie-breaker in the Senate,” Kimberly Strassel? Does the VP not get the tie-breaking vote in these matters?

    I don’t know but he’d definitely have a vested interest. I thought that’s why the Chief Justice presides instead of the VP. 

    • #7
    • January 30, 2020, at 7:01 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  8. kedavis Member

    Bishop Wash, Blk X-man/Wh pilot (View Comment):

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Wait, what? “No tie-breaker in the Senate,” Kimberly Strassel? Does the VP not get the tie-breaking vote in these matters?

    I don’t know but he’d definitely have a vested interest. I thought that’s why the Chief Justice presides instead of the VP.

    Seems like the VP would have a vested interest in anything else he gets the tie-breaking vote on too. So what? ALL the senators have a vested interest, really. In EVERYTHING they vote on.

    • #8
    • January 30, 2020, at 7:05 PM PST
    • Like
  9. Miffed White Male Member
    Miffed White Male Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Bishop Wash, Blk X-man/Wh pilot (View Comment):

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Wait, what? “No tie-breaker in the Senate,” Kimberly Strassel? Does the VP not get the tie-breaking vote in these matters?

    I don’t know but he’d definitely have a vested interest. I thought that’s why the Chief Justice presides instead of the VP.

    Jonah has mentioned on his podcast a couple times an interesting (but unverified As far as I know) fact about VP Pence.

    He supposedly has hanging in his office portraits of every Republican Vice President who has ever eventually become President.

     

    • #9
    • January 30, 2020, at 7:06 PM PST
    • 2 likes
  10. kedavis Member

    Miffed White Male (View Comment):

    Bishop Wash, Blk X-man/Wh pilot (View Comment):

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Wait, what? “No tie-breaker in the Senate,” Kimberly Strassel? Does the VP not get the tie-breaking vote in these matters?

    I don’t know but he’d definitely have a vested interest. I thought that’s why the Chief Justice presides instead of the VP.

    Jonah has mentioned on his podcast a couple times an interesting (but unverified As far as I know) fact about VP Pence.

    He supposedly has hanging in his office portraits of every Republican Vice President who has ever eventually become President.

    I think it unlikely that Pence would be re–elected if he initially got into the office of President via impeachment.

    But maybe being President for a few months would be enough for him.

    Does he think any future VP would then put HIS picture on the office wall?

    • #10
    • January 30, 2020, at 7:10 PM PST
    • 1 like
  11. James Lileks Contributor

    kedavis (View Comment):
    And I’m curious if James has a response to my comment on the previous show, Trump = Picard?

    I missed that! I will circle back and take a look.

     

    • #11
    • January 30, 2020, at 8:31 PM PST
    • 1 like
  12. James Lileks Contributor

    kedavis (View Comment):
    James: Rush stole borrowed “skulls full of mush” from Professor Kingsfield.

    Rush got that line the old fashioned way: he stole it!

    • #12
    • January 30, 2020, at 8:32 PM PST
    • 3 likes
  13. Jeff Hawkins Coolidge

    kedavis (View Comment):

    And James posits that voters won’t be willing to give up a booming economy to vote for Sanders or Warren, etc. Hopefully correct, but don’t underestimate the ability of people to vote contrary to evidence. I think many people believe that if Bernie Sanders won in November, the current economic success would continue, PLUS they could get all the free stuff he promises.

    Yeah, most of my Bernie friends fit a certain mindset:

    1. they think they’re underemployed because cost of living is so much in the city
    2. they think Bernie takes care of healthcare and debt and maybe rent control by taking from people who don’t really need it
    3. now they can live a middle class lifestyle and go out to eat more, maybe save a bit.

     

    • #13
    • January 30, 2020, at 9:22 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  14. kedavis Member

    James Lileks (View Comment):

    kedavis (View Comment):
    And I’m curious if James has a response to my comment on the previous show, Trump = Picard?

    I missed that! I will circle back and take a look.

     

    I’ll repeat it here, for the benefit (hopefully) of others:

    Dear James Lileks @jameslileks

    I know “Star Trek: Picard” is supposed to be anti-Trump, anti-conservative, etc, etc.

    But what if Picard IS Trump?

    Think about it.

    There are a lot of details that can be included, but I’ll settle for a rough outline.

    Some people claim that Trump turned the wonderful US and federal government that Obama had created, into a cesspool… even before he was sworn into office, really.

    But the “Deep State” and such have been around for a long time. FBI misbehavior – including spying on Trump and the Trump campaign – occurred during the Obama administration.

    On Star Trek, we might find that problems with the Federation/Starfleet in general and with Earth in particular, were developing for a long time. And that Picard’s departure from Starfleet was not just from a single out-of-the-blue or out-of-left-field event.

    Even in the TNG and DS9 series-es, we saw what could be evidence of increasing problems and corruption “back home.” For example, in the two-part DS9 episode “Homefront” and “Paradise Lost.” Yes, Admiral Leyton was defeated. But he was likely just the tip of the iceberg.

    Picard has been seeing all of that going on during his lifetime.

    Similarly, Trump has been around and involved in business, and somewhat in politics, for a long time too.

    So now in Star Trek: Picard, we’re going to get Picard rising up to take on the problems back home, etc etc.

    Just like Trump.

    I await the exploding heads.

    • #14
    • January 30, 2020, at 9:24 PM PST
    • Like
  15. kedavis Member

    It’s just a guess, but based on the positive reaction I’ve received from some, who have been – to put it mildly – rabidly anti-Trump, I suspect they believe I was positing that Picard might actually be just as bad as many think Trump is. But I was actually positing that Trump might be just as great as many think Picard was/is and will be including in the new show. And for the same reasons. Now I await the “no no, actually Picard is awful just like Trump!” Or the like. Because those people could never admit that Trump might actually be FIXING many of the problems that have developed over decades including in the Obama administration, same as Picard might be getting set up to fix what he sees as the corruption of the Federation and Starfleet.

    • #15
    • January 30, 2020, at 9:46 PM PST
    • 1 like
  16. Architectus Coolidge

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Bishop Wash, Blk X-man/Wh pilot (View Comment):

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Wait, what? “No tie-breaker in the Senate,” Kimberly Strassel? Does the VP not get the tie-breaking vote in these matters?

    I don’t know but he’d definitely have a vested interest. I thought that’s why the Chief Justice presides instead of the VP.

    Seems like the VP would have a vested interest in anything else he gets the tie-breaking vote on too. So what? ALL the senators have a vested interest, really. In EVERYTHING they vote on.

    It dates all the way back to when the President and the Vice President could be from different parties. They did not want a case where an opposing-party VP would preside over an impeachment-related issue and cast a vote that could make himself president.

    • #16
    • January 30, 2020, at 9:59 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  17. kedavis Member

    Architectus (View Comment):

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Bishop Wash, Blk X-man/Wh pilot (View Comment):

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Wait, what? “No tie-breaker in the Senate,” Kimberly Strassel? Does the VP not get the tie-breaking vote in these matters?

    I don’t know but he’d definitely have a vested interest. I thought that’s why the Chief Justice presides instead of the VP.

    Seems like the VP would have a vested interest in anything else he gets the tie-breaking vote on too. So what? ALL the senators have a vested interest, really. In EVERYTHING they vote on.

    It dates all the way back to when the President and the Vice President could be from different parties. They did not want a case where an opposing-party VP would preside over an impeachment-related issue and cast a vote that could make himself president.

    But the VP could never cast the deciding vote in an impeachment trial, because the vote to convict/remove can’t be just 51-50. And the VP doesn’t get to vote unless it IS to break a tie.

    • #17
    • January 30, 2020, at 10:00 PM PST
    • 1 like
  18. Arahant Member

    How dare Trump obstruct Congress. That’s Congress’ job.

    “Quid Pole Quo,” James? Terrible!

    • #18
    • January 31, 2020, at 12:54 AM PST
    • 4 likes
  19. Arahant Member

    The problem with the Long Poll answers is there is implied connexion between the two parts. For instance, “No, it will help Trump,” sounds as if the latter is the cause for the vote to be the former. One could vote that way, though, with the intention of, “No, it breaks precedent and is doing the job the House was too lazy to do, but if they do it, it will help Trump.”

    • #19
    • January 31, 2020, at 12:58 AM PST
    • 6 likes
  20. John Hanson Thatcher

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Ricochet Audio Network: we’ve got a new Long Poll question

    It would be better if there were additional Yes and No options with/for “It doesn’t matter how it affects Trump.”

    Yes, a thousand times yes. Calling witnesses is a bad idea, whether or not it helps Trump is not material to the case, and the answers as phrased only serve to obscure the important parts of the poll

    • #20
    • January 31, 2020, at 3:10 AM PST
    • 6 likes
  21. Rightfromthestart Coolidge

    Rob is still clinging to the ‘nobody likes Trump’ approval numbers, has he seen the rallies? He really should get out and visit America sometime. 

    • #21
    • January 31, 2020, at 6:58 AM PST
    • 2 likes
  22. James Lileks Contributor

    (Comment deleted for duplicity. I mean redundancy.)

    • #22
    • January 31, 2020, at 7:33 AM PST
    • 3 likes
  23. Taras Coolidge

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Miffed White Male (View Comment):

    Bishop Wash, Blk X-man/Wh pilot (View Comment):

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Wait, what? “No tie-breaker in the Senate,” Kimberly Strassel? Does the VP not get the tie-breaking vote in these matters?

    I don’t know but he’d definitely have a vested interest. I thought that’s why the Chief Justice presides instead of the VP.

    Jonah has mentioned on his podcast a couple times an interesting (but unverified As far as I know) fact about VP Pence.

    He supposedly has hanging in his office portraits of every Republican Vice President who has ever eventually become President.

    I think it unlikely that Pence would be re–elected if he initially got into the office of President via impeachment.

    But maybe being President for a few months would be enough for him.

    Does he think any future VP would then put HIS picture on the office wall?

    Pence is probably too smart to pull anything like this.

    Disloyalty is the quickest way to ensure that the 2020 ticket is Trump-Haley.

    • #23
    • January 31, 2020, at 10:35 AM PST
    • Like
  24. Max Ledoux Admin

    Just can’t please some of you with the poll questions. 😂 anyway, Fox is reportingthat Mirkowski will vote No to new witnesses. 

    • #24
    • January 31, 2020, at 10:43 AM PST
    • 2 likes
  25. Full Size Tabby Member

    Max Ledoux (View Comment):

    Just can’t please some of you with the poll questions. 😂 anyway, Fox is reportingthat Mirkowski will vote No to new witnesses.

    True.

    I say “no” to new witnesses regardless of the impact on President Trump. Turning the Senate process into an exploratory fact-finding mission is a waste of Senatorial time and will encourage future sessions of the House of Representatives to send to the Senate increasingly half-baked accusations. Remember the House, as the government body most often before the people in elections, is institutionally prone to reflect passions of the moment, and therefore we should not set up systems and incentives to encourage the body to take up those passions. 

    • #25
    • January 31, 2020, at 11:46 AM PST
    • 5 likes
  26. Blue Yeti Admin

    Rightfromthestart (View Comment):

    Rob is still clinging to the ‘nobody likes Trump’ approval numbers, has he seen the rallies? He really should get out and visit America sometime.

    Crowd sizes are much more a reflection of the organizational and planning skills of a campaign than actual voter interest. As he should, Trump (and every other politician with a brain) only do events where they know they can draw a crowd. Doesn’t mean much in a national election. You’re not going to see Trump do a rally in San Francisco, just like you won’t see Bernie do one in Alabama.

    • #26
    • January 31, 2020, at 12:13 PM PST
    • 4 likes
  27. JuliaBlaschke Coolidge

    Jeff Hawkins (View Comment):
    Should

    That’s what Venezuelans thought too.

    • #27
    • January 31, 2020, at 12:19 PM PST
    • Like
  28. JuliaBlaschke Coolidge

    Trump, the Republicans and the Democrats are all acting in their personal interests and the national interest can go hang. Sadly that’s where we are. Maybe we have always been there and maybe we always will. Churchill was so right when he said: ‘Many forms of Government have been tried, and will be tried in this world of sin and woe. No one pretends that democracy is perfect or all-wise. Indeed it has been said that democracy is the worst form of Government except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.… ‘

    • #28
    • January 31, 2020, at 12:26 PM PST
    • 1 like
  29. Charlotte Member
    Charlotte Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Arahant (View Comment):

    How dare Trump obstruct Congress. That’s Congress’ job.

    “Quid Pole Quo,” James? Terrible! Magnificent!

    FIFY

    • #29
    • January 31, 2020, at 2:48 PM PST
    • 1 like
  30. SParker Member

    Icarus213 (View Comment):

    I’m sorry, but James’ “it was a quid-Pol-quo” pun at Minute 32 was unacceptably underacknowledged, and I insist that we go back in time and correct this immediately to give it the praise it deserves.

    Well, I did review the tape (the time machine being in the shop; flux capacitor on the fritz again) and thanks for pointing it out. Being momentarily inattentive, I heard “Kid Prol Crow,” which I marked as not making a hell of lot of sense, but something my supple and dogged brain would figure out about 3 in the morning two weeks from now. I see the joke now. Relief.

    James did get a hearty chuckle-cum-laugh from Professor Yoo. And sometimes the very highest appreciation of a pun is shown when the hearer doesn’t rip your arm off and beat you to death with it.

     

    • #30
    • January 31, 2020, at 9:29 PM PST
    • 1 like