My Kingdom for a horse!
The Old Squire was gobsmacked by Fiona Hill’s star turn on Thursday’s installment of the Schiff Story Hour. (Insert the Roy Orbison growl from “Pretty Woman” here.)
Ms. Hill is a striking-looking woman. Strong, intelligent, with a fair sense of humor. Should be cast as James Bond’s femme fatale undercover nemesis in the next movie. Or should BE James Bond, in a Woke nod to #MeToo and the alphabet people.
Loved Ms. Hill’s story about a grade school classmate igniting her pig tails and enduring a subsequent haircut that left her looking like “Richard the Third.” (There IS a resemblance!) Guessing the reference drew only a blank image for most Americans. History tells that Richard III fell in the final battle of the War of the Roses at Bosworth Field in 1485 to Henry Tudor, who regarded his rival’s claim to the throne as illegitimate. Old Richard, it was suspected, had dispensed with the rightful heirs in the Tower of London. Richard’s demise ended the
New York dynasty. (Shakespeare tells the story.) Not that there is any analogy to America 2019.
Combine that with fine Fiona’s British accent and Hubba Hubba! We are fans of aristocrats — Restore the Habsburgs! — but especially the British flavor. Downton Abbey and its obvious inspiration, Upstairs Downstairs. Gosford Park. Victoria (please don’t let Prince Albert die!). The King’s Speech. The Crown.
What if Fiona sounded like Joe Pesci?
“I grew up poor with a very distinctive working-class accent. In England in the 1980s and 1990s, this would have impeded my professional advancement,” Ms. Hill said in her opening statement. “This background has never set me back in America.”
To the contrary! Here in the Colonies, a British accent carries with it the whiff of olde English leather, erudition, authority, breeding. Fiona Hill’s testimony sounded more credible precisely BECAUSE of the accent. When Hollywood cast ancient Roman aristocrats in their sandals and toga movies of mid-Century, they chose plummy Brits like Peter Ustinov, Charles Laughton, and Lawrence Olivier in Spartacus. Only do the British themselves discern varying degrees of pedigree in the parlance of their island.
Professor Henry Higgins had something to say about that. It is why Pierce Brosnan could not place Mrs. Doubtfire’s accent. It is surprising that Michael Caine speaks lower-class Cockney. We are told that Wis-CONNN-sin speaks its own particular accent. (Right, A-NAAAN-da?) Very similar to Sarah Palin of Alaska. The New Orleans patois is said to sound like that of Brooklyn, N.Y., as improbable as that seems.
CNN has an interesting take on accents.
Ambassadors Bill Taylor and Marie Yovanovitch were “rightfully disturbed that Rudy Giuliani had his own back channel in Ukraine and had more clout and access to key policy makers than they did. But this is common. Recall that Hillary Clinton exchanged more than 150 e-mails about Libya with confidant Sidney Blumenthal and not one with Ambassador Christopher Stevens.” (R.I.P.) — a former diplomat in the Wall Street Journal.
Did FBI doctor Russian collusion documents?
A former FBI lawyer is being investigated for allegedly altering a document in the now-discredited 2016 Russia probe. That’s a CNN report! Horowitz turned over evidence on the forgery to the federal prosecutor. In other words, it’s a criminal matter.
Have they no shame? That doesn’t stop The New York Times from running an anti-Trump piece from — are you ready for this? — Glenn R. Simpson and Peter Fritsch, co-founders of Fusion GPS! The political chop shop that Hillary Clinton and the DNC hired which, in turn, took on former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele, who soaked up Russian disinformation …
No Ukrainian meddling?
Public professions of support for Clinton and opposition to Trump by Ukrainian officials. It includes acknowledgments by Ukrainian investigators that their Obama administration counterparts encouraged them to investigate Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort. … A Ukrainian court, in late 2018, concluded that two Ukrainian officials meddled in the election. And in 2018 House testimony, Nellie Ohr — who worked for Fusion GPS, the Clinton campaign opposition research firm that produced the lurid and discredited Steele dossier — conceded that a pro-Clinton Ukrainian legislator was a Fusion informant.
Wisconsin going Trump’s way
Democrats better hope that Gordon Sondland and my hoped-for new pen pal Fiona Hill register with voters. Because the gold-standard Marquette Law School poll shows our battleground state going in Trump’s direction.
The poll, conducted Nov. 13-17 among 801 registered voters, found that 40% of Wisconsin respondents think Trump should be impeached and removed from office, while 53% say he shouldn’t. The October Marquette poll found 51% of respondents said the president should not be impeached and removed from office, while 44% said he should be impeached.
Worse, Trump beats all four leading Democratic hopefuls, some by as much as 8 points. That’s a complete reversal from just one month ago.
Blaska’s Bottom Line: Donald Trump is a reckless and vindictive president who creates his own problems. He is also lucky in his opponents if Democrats go full-bore socialist with Elizabeth Warren or Bernie Sanders or Beltway lifer Joe Biden. (On domestic violence: “keep punching at it and punching at it and punching at it.”)
Any House impeachment vote will be gaveled dead on arrival like Wisconsin state senator Scott Fitzgerald dispensed with Gov. Evers’ special session on gun control. Justice Dept. Inspector General Horowitz comes out with his report December 9. Sen. Lindsay Graham will subpoena Biden the Younger for his own hearings.