Tag: CNN

Socialist Andrew Gillum calls for confederacy to pass Universal Healthcare

In a rocky race so far for Florida Governor, Democrat candidate Andrew Gillum suggested to CNN’s Chris Cuomo that we needed a “confederacy of states” in order to get Universal Healthcare.  Gillum’s confederacy would ironically be a southern confederacy. Gillum also charged DeSantis with using a “bullhorn” which is a common racist dog whistle for Gillum’s base, bringing up connotations of ignorant segregationists. See? Two can play at that game.

But Gillum’s point about a southern confederacy is even more ridiculous than the gaffe itself.  Gillum’s point was actually valid.  If Florida doubled their state taxes in order to pay for government controlled healthcare, the state would empty out.  People would move to surrounding states to get away from his Universal Healthcare boondoggle.  Universal Healthcare requires shared misery to work.  That’s why Obamacare had a mandate.  Gillum realizes he can’t destroy Florida’s healthcare system unless their neighbors join him so people have nowhere to go.

Sounds like a winner.

Trump is expected to announce a new type of retirement plan in a rally in North Carolina.  The pooled 401k would allow small businesses to pool their resources and put together retirement plans while sharing the cost.  Trump also took action to reduce government spending by cancelling raises for Federal workers.  At the same time, he scored a major victory with the NAFTA redo with Mexico.  Canada has until today to decide if they are going to join.

Administration moves towards allowing pooled retirement plans

Many are speculating Mueller will make moves today.  Mueller has until September 6th to take any major action before we get into the election season.  Media outlets have recklessly speculated, without evidence, that Mueller will indict Don Jr and Jared Kushner, that he will subpoena Trump to testify, or that he will grant Michael Cohen a cooperation plea deal to get dirt on Trump.  So far, it’s been eerily quiet.

Currently no one is speculating that Mueller will step up efforts against Bruce Ohr, Peter Strzok, Andrew McCabe, Hillary Clinton, James Comey, or any of the other co-conspirators who solicited dirt from foreign agents to set up the Russian investigation in the first place.

Mueller could move today

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CNN reports that CNN doesn’t lie

CNN had continued to ignore questions about their suspect reporting until Trump called them out on Twitter last night.  CNN was recently busted for using Lanny Davis as an anonymous source for a story he later admitted he made up.  Additionally, When Davis fed CNN the anti-Trump story, CNN wrote that they reached out to him for comment and he declined.  This was a blatant lie.  As media outlets began to question CNN’s story implicating Trump in the infamous Trump Tower meeting, it quickly became apparent that either the story was bunk or Michael Cohen had committed perjury in his earlier congressional testimony.  Lanny Davis, who represents Cohen, then admitted that the story was fake news and that he was CNN’s anonymous source.

CNN refused to back away from the story and even now supports it in true Dan Rather style.  Last night, Trump called them out for lying.  That was when CNN responded on Twitter with the amazing statement that “CNN does not lie”.  Apparently they will do whatever it takes to protect the author, Carl Bernstein.  Bernstein of course is a journalist of Watergate fame who wrote the Trump Tower story.  I feel like I’ve heard this somewhere before: the coverup is worse than the crime.  CNN needs to come clean.

CNN doubles down on fakenews

Democrats are taking their #abolishICEdon’tactuallyabolishICE movement to a whole new level.  Arizona Democrat Ruben Gallego is now saying that Democrats will go back and punish ICE agents for actions they take during the Trump administration.  The latest uproar about ICE is that they are denying passports and detaining individuals who have come here illegally with fake birth certificates.  Birth attendants have admitted that for a 40 year period they and their colleagues were issuing US birth certificates to Mexican babies born near the border.  Denial of passports to these individuals here fraudulently started during the Bush era and continued into the Obama era.  Trump has stepped up efforts as part of his zero tolerance policy.

Democrat Representative threatens ICE agents

Chuck Todd is suggesting that Mueller will come out with a big announcement on Friday.  But he doesn’t have any actual knowledge of an announcement.  Todd is speculating that Mueller won’t make any announcements between Labor Day and the election because it could affect the election.  That would effectively leave Friday for any big movement.  There has been a lot of speculation over what Mueller might and might not do, but most of it has turned out to be wrong.  Unnamed supposed inside sources have also been incredibly unreliable.  As of now, the predicted indictments of Don Jr and Jared Kushner have not appeared, despite the wishful thinking.

Media members suggest Mueller might make announcement soon

Gun control advocates predictably wrong again

The scene was barely a few minutes old in Jacksonville, Florida before David Hogg was making statements about politicians and the NRA.  Another activist took to Twitter to list all the lax gun laws in Florida.  But none of it ended up being relevant.  The Florida shooter was actually a Maryland shooter who was down for the weekend.  He bought his guns in Maryland, which is the 7th strictest state regarding gun laws.  Additionally, he had been admitted for mental issues twice, which would have prevented him from buying his guns if Maryland’s background check system had caught it.  The shooter made several violent tweets before heading to the video game tournament, and those were forwarded to the FBI.  The shooting took place in a gun free zone, which is where 98% of mass shootings happen.  Once again, the facts make fools of gun control advocates.

Gun control activists hope for smoking gun, get same old story instead

Lanny Davis has now admitted that he was the unnamed source in the CNN story about Trump knowing ahead of time of the Trump Tower meeting.  This has been an embarrassing episode of fake news for CNN akin to the Dan Rather memogate scandal.  Davis, as an anonymous source, told CNN that his client Michael Cohen had knowledge that Trump knew about the infamous but not illegal Trump Tower meeting.  CNN ran with the story in July based on the anonymous tip.  Davis later made the claim publicly, before recanting and denying it publicly on CNN.  However, CNN ignored their own story and continued to run with the claim based on their anonymous source.  Now we know that source was Lanny Davis himself.

Lanny Davis admits he was anonymous source for his own fake news

Americans don’t support impeachment.  This is according to a new poll reported by left leaning Axios.  According to the poll, 64% believe Michael Cohen when he says he paid off Stormy Daniels.  But only 44% believe impeachment proceedings should begin.  In our opinion though, this is a stupid poll.  Trump said back in May that Cohen paid off Stormy Daniels and was reimbursed through his legal retainer, not out of campaign funds.  There is nothing there to impeach Trump for.  If anything, it shows that half of Americans are not keeping up with this mess.

Americans still against impeachment

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is back in hot water after her tweet that #abolishICE didn’t really mean #abolishICE.  She admitted she actually supports deportations.  It turns out “abolish” is simply the new “occupy” or “punch a nazi”.  It doesn’t mean anything, it’s just a dog whistle to her crazy supporters to show up armed and masked and destroy private property.

But perhaps even worse, Ocasio-Cortez said that #abolishICE meant we need ICE to stop “sexually assaulting women with impunity”.  I would love to see her meet with all 20,000 ICE employees in front of their families and say that to their faces.

#AbolishICE redefined as “Keep deporting, stop raping women”

But CNN Persisted

CNN isn’t backing off their claim that Michael Cohen can prove Trump complicity with the Trump Tower meeting.  This is despite the fact that Lanny Davis has recanted and backed off of the claim.  We reported earlier after Davis’s under-reported interview with Anderson Cooper that he basically went back on every claim he had previously made.

Davis reiterated to the Washington Post that his own claims were bogus.  But CNN is persisting in reporting that Cohen is ready to dish dirt on Trump.  CNN seems to be going the Dan Rather route of “It’s not proven, but we believe it in our hearts”. Possible things Cohen might know about?  There’s the Trump Tower meeting and potential interference through the DNC server hack, although Lanny Davis has now denied both.  There’s also an old report from the UK Daily Mail back in May that Cohen demanded money from Qatar for Trump.  But so far this seems to be tabloid gossip.

Lanny Davis says Cohen dirt oversold.  CNN still buying it.

Democrats know impeachment is out of grasp and have stopped running on it.  The economy is too good, and their evidence is too bad to actually think they could get 75 Senators to vote for impeachment.  But Democrats are promising endless probes and investigations if they take control of the House.  According to Bloomberg, Democrats have a long laundry list of taxpayer funded probes to hit Trump with in order to obstruct his agenda.  Still, Trump has weathered investigations through the first two years of his Presidency while still accomplishing major agenda items.  Voters will need to decide in November whether they want massive obstruction in the House or continued progress on the economy.

Democrats abandon impeachment, go for obstruction instead

Speaking of Trump accomplishments, stocks are through the roof again as the US and Mexico get closer to closing a new NAFTA deal.  Trump blew up the old NAFTA deal in an effort to secure something better for the United States.  He has accomplished this and North American trade is back on.  The Mexico NAFTA agreement should also bring Canada back into the mix.  This is a big victory for Trump’s foreign trade policy.

NAFTA 2.0 with Mexico coming back online

Healthy skepticism and how to read the paper

Everyone is familiar with the term Fakenews.  But actually, this is nothing new.  If you were into politics in the 90s, then you remember CNN being dubbed the “Clinton News Network”.  The alternative media revolution began with the Rush Limbaugh radio program and has grown to include other programmers as well.  The rise of Fox News initially made for competition between the normal mainstream media outlets and more conservative outlets.

David Hume was a philosopher and skeptic who came up with a guide for reading about miracles.  I think that guide is helpful when reading the paper too.  Is the headline incredible?  Does the person writing it stand to gain?  Does it contradict what you know to be true?  Many people get sucked into clickbait or shocking stories from unnamed sources because they don’t ask these questions.  The Russian Dossier made it into four FISA court applications because it took so long for the FBI to ask themselves what Christopher Steele was getting paid, or whether his incredible and shocking claims had been fact checked.

I would add to Hume’s rules a few of my own.  Do the sources have names?  In the past, you would have an unnamed source because they didn’t want their cover blown.  But they would collect data and release it at a point where it was safe to do so.  Today, the use of unnamed sources often masks the fact that they are embellishing, outright lying, non-existent, or delivering their information to the media illegally.  That last one is especially true in the context of FBI investigations or foreign intelligence.  If you were sitting in a court room and you heard testimony read from a frightened victim who preferred anonymity for her or his own protection, you might give that some credence.  If the prosecutor gets up and announces that according to an unnamed source the defendant also doesn’t wear deodorant and picks his nose, the judge would have some things to say to that prosecutor.

Look at the context.  I recently saw a political ad where an opponent was accused of wanting to raise taxes 23%.  What they were talking about is the Fairtax.  The Fairtax is a 23% tax, but it replaces all income tax, payroll tax and capital gains tax.  Now, I have my own personal feelings about the Fairtax, but without that context this sounded awful.  Once you add that context, it sounds pretty great.

Understand the writer’s bias.  For example, if you’ve been reading my stuff you know that I tend towards libertarian conservatism.  It helps to know who the authors previously worked for or are related to.  Chris Cuomo from CNN is the brother of NY Governor Andrew Cuomo and son of Mario Cuomo.  That’s a good place to start.  And sure enough, you’ll discover he is a New York liberal who sees everything through that lens.  Sean Hannity is obviously biased heavily towards the right.  If Trump says “we need to stop the Mexicans”, Cuomo is going to read that in the worst possible light while Hannity gives Trump the benefit of the doubt.   The best way to combat this is to use multiple sources and check them against each other.

Understand the business.  Let’s go back to the Trump “Mexicans” example.  There may be nuance in that statement.  But nuance doesn’t sell news.  Flashy headlines and shock drive the industry.  So when Trump talks about illegal immigrants, no one wants to take the time to try to figure out if he’s talking about gang members, if he has a slight personal bias against Hispanics, or what his statement was actually all about.  The important thing for the media is getting a headline that people will read.  The partisan sides can do with it what they will.

From time to time you’ll see what I like to call a “false quotable”.  It’s a misstated fact, bad statistic, or urban legend sort of quote that takes on a life of it’s own.  A good example was Sarah Palin’s “I can see Russia from my house” quote.  Except, she never said that.  It was a line by Tina Fey on Saturday Night Live impersonating Palin.  But the idea that Palin herself said that persisted in the media.  Another good one is Trump calling Mexicans murderers and rapists.  At the time, he was talking about MS-13 gang members.  But the quote took on a life of it’s own and there are still people who insist that Trump thinks all Mexicans are murderers and rapists.

Lastly, it’s important to understand how narrative works.  Narrative is like an assembly line.  It makes for efficient story writing and disseminating of the news without much worry about content.  If it is commonly accepted for instance, that Saddam Hussein has weapons of mass destruction, then articles can be written about various instances in accordance with that narrative without having to do the hard work of fact checking.  Trump Russia collusion was a good example of this.  Once the narrative was established, no one seemed to care things happened like Comey said Trump wasn’t a target of the investigation.  Instead, the only stories that were made a focus were ones that fit the narrative.  It took Trump firing Comey and saying that one of the reasons was Comey’s failure to counter the narrative to get any media outlets to even talk about that.

The use of narrative to avoid the hard work of journalism is difficult for the reader to compensate for.  Multiple sources will often run the exact same story even down to the headline rather than balancing one another.  A great recent example was Fox News and CNN both saying that the White House wouldn’t deny the existence of a tape of Trump using a racist slur.  Of course, Trump had already denied it, but that didn’t stop all of the media outlets from persisting with the false narrative based on a false quotable.  To combat a false narrative, the reader needs to go to the source video or documents themselves and do the hard work.  At Political Brief, sometimes we have to go back and listen to several minutes of video to get the context and figure out what truly happened.

It’s sad that the media is so careless and sometimes intentionally biased.  But a reader armed with skepticism and the desire to find the truth can combat this and discover reality.

Cuomo: America was never great

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is in hot water for countering Trump’s “Make America Great Again” slogan with one of his own: “America was never that great”.  I don’t know how far that’s going to get him with the majority of Americans, but it will play well with the radical Democratic Socialists on the Left.  Just yesterday Bernie Sanders said America is “fundamentally immoral and wrong”.  Andrew Cuomo’s brother and CNN commentator Chris Cuomo recently got himself in trouble suggesting that punching right-wingers was morally justifiable.

Democrat governor says America was never great

Economists are taking Elizabeth Warren to task over her far fetched Accountable Capitalism Act.  Warren, who opposes free market capitalism, came up with the idea of having corporations have to obtain a “Federal charter” to operate.  The license, in addition to the hoops they have to jump through to work in their state, would raise $1 billion in fee taxes.  Warren’s so-called “charter” would require corporate directors to consider not just their stakeholders, but also their employees and communities.

Of course, this is moronic.  Any well run company has to consider the well-being of their employees and communities or the free market will eliminate that company from competition.  In fact, that point was made by none other than BET co-founder Robert Johnson.  The Black Entertainment Television co-founder said “Most companies and most boards look at all of their stakeholders, not only their shareholders. They look at their employees, they look at the community where they reside and do business, they look at even the vendors that they do business with. So I think it’s a solution in search of a problem that’s absolutely not necessary,”

What Warren’s bill, along with the exemptions for friends of the ruling party that we have seen with previous Socialist overreaches, would create a new avenue for crony capitalism.  In other words, to get an exemption for your federal charter or to guarantee you have your charter maintained, you have to stay friendly with the party in power.  We saw the same thing with ACA where Obama’s biggest supporters received exemptions to various new labor rules.

Warren’s new socialist measure to control businesses gets a failing grade

Trump is implementing what Obama failed to do with his new Buy America push.  Trump is planning on using an executive order to create rules to ensure that federal agencies use American made goods and services for their projects.  There are questions about the legality of the executive order and sure to be legal challenges.  There are also issues of increased costs to the taxpayers if the government has to buy more expensive American goods.

Obama tried and failed to pass a buy American provision in 2009 and again in 2011.  He backed off of the provision in 2009 after American companies who sell overseas swayed him away from the influence of the US labor unions with fears of foreign retaliation.  When Obama flopped back to supporting Buy American, the Jobs Act of 2011 was squashed by the GOP.

Our opinion?  It was wrong when Obama tried it, it’s wrong now.  Free trade produces lower prices for consumers and taxpayers, and competition helps American producers to be efficient.  A better way to help American producers is to cut taxes and regulation so that they can compete on the high end of the global scale.  But Trump is doubly wrong by doing this as an executive order rather than through Congress.  Many Democrats support Buy American provisions.  Labor unions love it.  By going it alone, Trump will alienate conservative and free market GOP members, but I doubt he’ll receive any recognition from the left.  Democrats also supported protectionist tariffs, until Trump did it.  All around this is poor strategy and contrary to free market principles.

Trump to accomplish Obama agenda item with Buy American executive order

Fox News and CNN earn 100% bias rating on the same story

It’s rare to see too competing and ideologically different media outlets get the same issue so wrong.  But that’s what happened on Wednesday when Sarah Sanders refused to guarantee that Donald Trump has never and would never behave a specific way.  That sparked unfounded accusations from the two media outlets that Trump was on some secret tape somewhere using racial slurs.  Of course, if that tape ever did arise it would be a glorious day for liberal and establishment Republican allies.  So glorious in fact, that if the tape existed it, like Russian collusion evidence, would be on a 24/7 news cycle until even the spaghetti spine GOP establishment would be voting to impeach Trump.  But no tape has surfaced.

In fact, Trump himself made a statement that no tape exists because he doesn’t use those words.  “They aren’t in my vocabulary” tweeted the President.  Mark Burnett who produced The Apprentice has confirmed no such tape exists.  But the media took one ridiculous question from a reporter and Sarah Sanders’ reasonable response and turned it into the big story.

CNN took it a step further with Anderson Cooper “explaining” how Sarah Sanders basically admitted there is a Trump N-word tape out there somewhere:

https://www.cnn.com/videos/politics/2018/08/14/kth-omarosa-trump-white-house-nword-dog-ac-vpx.cnn

“Today the woman who speaks for the President of the United States said she cannot rule out…” was how Cooper begins.  But that is a complete mischaracterization of what actually happened.  In fact CNN tweeted the exchange before driving their unhinged narrative that Sanders was admitting something.  As a reporter asks her about the possibility of the existence of the tape, Sanders says several times that President Trump has addressed the question directly and she would refer them to him.

The reporter pressed and asked if she could guarantee that no tape with Trump using a racial slur will ever show up.  But Sanders can’t predict the future, nor can she speak beyond what she knows.  So she directed them back to the President’s statement.  Sanders’ refusal to guarantee that there will never be a tape now or in the future of Trump saying something turned into the Fox News, CNN, and MSNBC headline.

We spelled it out for CNN on our Instagram page:

As a result of this media narrative, CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC have earned a 100% bias rating on the story, and our Brief’s On Fire label.