A New York Times columnist smells a rat

One of the New York Times’ never-Trump, conservative columnists smells a rat. Ross Douthat recalls that LBJ spied on Barry Goldwater’s campaign in 1964, emboldened because “the entire political establishment treated Goldwater as a unique threat to the norms of postwar politics, a dangerous man likely to bring fascism to America or to lead the United States into thermonuclear war.”

Fifty-two years later, the political establishment (Andrew McCabe, James Comey, James Clapper, William Brennan, Peter Strzok and Lisa Page et al.) felt it their patriotic duty to prevent another “dangerous man.”

Jack Nicholson smells a rat

Ross Douthat:

Having the law-enforcement arm of the executive branch surveil a presidential nominee from the opposing party is still the kind of case where, in a non-Trump context,anyone suspicious of our security state would smell a rat. …

Now that the Mueller investigation has concluded that whatever the F.B.I. thought they saw happening was probably not, in fact, the kind of complex conspiracy suggested by Christopher Steele’s infamous dossier and other maximally alarmist theories, it’s reasonable to ask some more questions …

If, as seems possible, some of those pungent parts were actually invented in Moscow, then the F.B.I. took unprecedented steps with uncertain constitutional implications while under the influence of bogus information.

Blaska’s bottom LineDouthat won’t say it so we will: if the “pungent parts” were “invented in Moscow,” then who REALLY is guilty of collusion?

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Paul Krugman teaches economic illiteracy

How many times do the Trump haters get to be wrong
and still get paid (or invited on CNN)?

If Mark Zuckerberg is going to ban anyone he should delete the paid advertisement that comes across our Facebook feed here at the Policy Werkes: “Paul Krugman teaches economics.” 

The man shouldn’t teach school recess. This New York Times columnist is a clock with no hands; he’s not even right twice a day. Your average on-line palm reader is more clairvoyant.

Stand aside, Hillary Clinton. Donald Trump is living rent-free in Paul Krugman’s head, so blinded is his hatred. 

often wrong paul krugman

Right there should have been the B.S. warning signal: The financial markets will “never” recover. NEVER?

­

Krugman, Nobel-winning economist, got Donald Trump very wrong in what is supposed to be the columnist’s wheelhouse: economics. In October 2016, a month before the presidential election, Krugman peered into his economic crystal ball and saw this static:

“If the unlikely event happens and Trump wins, you will see a market crash of historic proportions, I think. … (The markets) are terrified of him.”

After the voters had decided, Krugman doubled down.

“So we are very probably looking at a global recession, with no end in sight. I suppose we could get lucky somehow. But on economics, as on everything else, a terrible thing has just happened.”

So records Charles Gasparino in the NY Post in “Experts predicted economic Armageddon under Trump — where are they now?” (H/T Ann of Althouse)

Some economic recession!

To refresh our memories, the stock market took off like a sky rocket immediately after the election.

The market, as measured Friday (05-04-19) by Morningstar’s broad U.S. market index, has returned a hearty 14.95% over the last three years, 17.08% as measured by the Dow Jones industrial average.

The economic numbers released Friday show the U.S. economy added 263,000 jobs in April, while the unemployment rate dropped from 3.8% to 3,6% — the lowest since December 1969. Average hourly wage growth rose 3.2% on an annual basis. 

Forbes observes that Household debt of equivalent income was over 144% 10 years ago and is now at 99%, according to Federal Reserve data.

Voodoo punditry 

Krugman is no economist (here he is calling for a housing bubble several years before the collapse of 2008-09); he is the rankest partisan. Give him his bucket of Kentucky Fried. A sampler of his recent columns: 

  • “Survival of the Wrongest; Evidence has a well-known liberal bias” (written apparently without irony or self-awareness)
  • “The Great Republican Abdication; a party that no longer believes in American values”
  • “Republicans Are the Real Extremists; Conspiracy theorists and enemies of democracy”
  • “The incredible shrinking Trump boom” (this on 3-30-19!) and his pièce de résistance:
  • “Donald Trump Is Trying to Kill You.”

Blaska’s Bottom Line: Just remember that when our friends at The Capital Times quote Krugman as if he were Paul writing to the Ephesians. BTW: Was that James Clapper we saw last night (05-04-19) on Anderson Cooper? Yes it was! Some intelligence chief!

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Dear Dr. Gee: can we teach responsibility instead of guilt?

Want to reduce racial disparities?
Do your homework!

If we do not get answers to our questions, Blaska Policy Werkes will issue subpoenas. Sure, they are crypto-subpoenas but they should produce about the same result as Jerry Nadler’s.

We question the utility of racial conscience-raising which, in Madison today, is a popular pastime rivaling Pokeman Go. We were struck by this recent letter to the editor appearing in the Wisconsin State Journal:

My husband and I recently completed “Justified Anger: Black History for a New Day,” a 10-week course about slavery and how slavery and its aftermath has shaped not only the African-American experience but the experience of all Americans (whether they know it or not). Kudos to the Rev. Alex Gee and the team of professors, activists and volunteers who planned and presented this excellent course that seeks to engage Madisonians in advocating for racial justice.

The whiff of smugness about me as a white person from Wisconsin, a state I thought untainted by our slave past, was blown away as I listened and learned of the ways the northern states were complicit in slavery and discussed with fellow Madisonians the many aspects of racism and racial disparities that remain endemic in our society. Among them: housing, education, voting, employment and the judicial system.

I know Madison can do better than we are doing. And I hope that I and my fellow attendees will find a path to work toward a fairer, more inclusive city. You can learn more about the course, taught annually, at nehemiah.org. — Patti Sinclair, Madison.

Other

My Ancestry DNA results came back!

I put this question to the Rev. Alex Gee, the major domo at Nehemiah and the guy who started Justified Anger:

“Now that the Sinclairs are newly woke, how does that help little Javon read? Do math? Obey the law? Get admitted to college, start a career, own a home, get elected to the school board, retire with a 401(k)?”

No response. 

What, exactly, are you doing differently?

We also reached out to Ms. Sinclair of Madison with our questions and, these weeks later, have been met with silence. The white lab coats here at the Werkes wondered how their lives had changed since their awakening. What are they doing today (or not doing) that differs from their previous state of white privilege, implicit bias, and latent racism? Maybe it’s like Russian collusion: no there, there.

It is indisputable that disparities between races exist in such areas as education, income, arrests, etc. The question is this: Who is responsible for that disparity? 

If Madison be so racist:

  • We want to know if black and brown children were being turned away at the schoolhouse door by George Wallace III.
  • Is the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission working overtime to redress discrimination of employers despite their ubiquitous “Now Hiring” signs?
  • How many black voters did the city clerk turn away on April 2 and why have those frustrated voters remained silent?
  • When is District Attorney Ismael Ozanne going to abjure the racism of the judicial system?
  • Are the school resource police — all of them persons of color — just picking on kids who look like them?

We say this as someone with new admiration, after reading Ron Chernow’s biography, for the presidency of U.S. Grant, who suppressed the Klan. He vowed that, after winning the bloody war against slavery, he’d be damned if he was going to lose the peace. The indentured servants here at the Stately Manor now are watching professor Henry Louis Gates’ PBS series on Reconstruction. That period was bloody enough.

The gift that keeps on taking

Toriana Pettaway

Toriana Pettaway, victim

Which brings us to Toriana Pettaway, Madison’s racial equity coordinator. Unintentionally, for certain, Ms. Pettaway is teaching her own graduate-level course on waging identity politics.

You may recall, when Ms. P. failed to submit the required number of signatures to run for mayor she accused the city clerk’s office of “white supremacy B.S.”

Race is the lady’s business, her line of work and boy is she good at it! (Pays well, too, at $83,377 a year.) City of Madison managers have worked up a spreadsheet of workplace violations, shortcomings, insubordination, F-bombing, tasks uncompleted or poorly performed. The lady has been warned, put on notice, and suspended. Her personnel file must be bulging like the hernia on a fat man.

And still, Ms. Pettaway plays identity politics against her boss. Who is also black. Now she is “marginalized” as a black female working in his office.

That is some dedication to the job of race mongering! Well done, Ms. Pettaway!

Blaska’s Bottom Line: Funny thing, having never enslaved anyone, refused service or discriminated in any way, we still don’t feel guilty. Might we all be better off if we focused on behavior instead of race?

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Was it Hillary Clinton who colluded with the Russians?

How did this baseless witch hunt ever get started?

Maybe Hillary can tell us

There is a reason Rachel Maddow put Hillary Clinton front and center on her MSNBC program Wednesday night. That reason can be described by the acronym: C.Y.A.

The 2016 GOP convention chants of “Lock Her Up!” may yet come true. Because the real story out of Attorney General William Barr’s appearance Wednesday before the Senate Judiciary Committee is that the legal bloodhounds are on Mrs. Clinton’s trail.

That Barr’s four-page synopsis of a 480-page report did not capture every nuance is the Democrats’ feeble attempt at diversion. Fake news.

Wm Barr

“We have to stop using the criminal justice system as a political weapon.”

‘The definition of “collusion” ‘

From the Washington Times: 

Attorney General William P. Barr revealed Wednesday that the Justice Department is looking into the possibility that Russian operatives fed disinformation to the Hillary Clinton campaign during the 2016 presidential election season.

Mr. Barr told a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing about the expanded scope of a review into “the activities over the summer of 2016,” which included vehemently anti-Trump FBI senior officials making key decisions on the investigations of Mrs. Clinton and Republican candidate Donald Trump.

One key question is how much the FBI relied on the dossier compiled by former British spy Christopher Steele, using information gleaned from Russian sources, which helped spur the Trump-Russia collusion narrative. The dossier was funded by payments from the Clinton campaign and Democratic National Committee that were hidden in campaign finance reports behind payments to a law firm.

“That’s the definition of collusion,” said Sen. Charles E. Grassley of Iowa, the chamber’s senior Republican.

The whole Steele dossier appears to have been bunk, with even Bob Woodward now saying the “highly questionable” document “needs to be investigated.” 

A star is born

Missouri’s new senator, Josh Hawley, was focused and downright percussive. (By contrast Ben Sasse, R-Nebraska, whom I deeply admire otherwise, stumbled over a question in search of a point.)

Hawley repeated the arrogant, smirking Peter Strzok saying that he stopped at a WalMart in southern Virginia (well outside the capital beltway) and “could smell the Trump support.”

“I cannot believe that a top official of this government, with the kind of power these people have, would try to exercise their own prejudices – and that is what this is: it’s open, blatant prejudices – and would try to use that to overturn a democratic election. That’s the real crisis here.”

We share Barr’s frustration:

“How did we get to the point here where the evidence is now that the president was falsely accused of colluding with the Russians and accused of being treasonous and accused of being a Russian agent and the evidence is now that was without a basis, and two years of his administration have been dominated by the allegations that have now been proven false?”

“To listen to some of the rhetoric, you would think that the Mueller report had found the opposite.”

Here in Wisconsin

RightWisconsin observes:  Justice Abrahamson is a lame duck herself, yet she dissented on issuing the order to reinstate Walker’s appointments approved during the “lame duck” session. NEWS FLASH: a governor’s term ends when his successor is sworn in, not on election night. Same for legislators.

Blaska’s Bottom Line: It is a separate question, yet to be decided, whether restrictions placed on the governor’s powers violated state constitution. But the Walker appointments will stand.

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Recent school rapes defeat Cops Out of Schools cause

‘We don’t feel safe!’

To whom did the victim report her gang rape?
To the police officer assigned to East high school

Real-world events keep contradicting the Cops Out of School narrative that police are the enemy instead of crime. As a result, Monday night’s Madison school board meeting (04-29-19) was the first in several months that the social justice warriors did not completely shut down or force to retreat behind closed doors.

Angela Davis

‘I’ll bring the guns’

In the wake of the April 10 gang rape at East high school and several sexual assaults at La Follette (see sidebar), Madison wants more safety, not less. That puts two of the newly elected members to this all-female school board in a tight spot, given that Ali Muldrow and Ananda Mirilli campaigned against police in Madison’s four main high schools.

A delegation of articulate Memorial high school girls made a great impression speaking on the subject. But the star of the public comment period Monday night was the bilingual teacher at Lincoln elementary school, mother of an East high school student.

During her three minutes of public comment, the teacher reported a knife being brought to East high school, a few days later a gun — all dealt with by the school resource officer. A few days later, the gang rape. All this April, in one school.

The teacher decried the lack of any statement until the district’s director of safety and security made his unfortunate remark that “Kids will be kids.”

“Kids will NOT be kids!” Monday night’s teacher exclaimed.

“The community expected to hear that this community will have zero tolerance for sexual violence in our schools … We will not tolerate sexual violence, sexual harassment of students, sexual harassment of staff. Staff at East high school, friends and colleagues, are saying “We don’t feel safe.” 

Using the term “education resource officers,” she continued:

Are our EROs doing anything positive in our schools? Who did the victim report to? She felt safe enough to report it to the ERO! Are there anything positive our EROs do in our schools? Do we hear about them?

This roused the social justice warriors, who began heckling and interrupting, to the point where board president Mary Burke begged for civility. Freedom Inc. had already cited incidents far from Madison and long ago. The Lincoln teacher countered, “I’m asking what is specific to Madison.”

One more encouraging sign: the Lincoln teacher got a nice round of applause. See for yourself:

 

Blaska’s Bottom Line: One sycophant who described herself as a district mental health worker celebrated Freedom Inc. by passing along word that the old communist and acquitted terrorist, Angela Davis (who spoke at UW-Madison August 16), had praised their work.

Mental health worker, Heal Thyself!

Posted in Cops in schools, Crime, Madison schools, Race, War on Police | Tagged , , | 8 Comments

The meeting will come to order

Legislative governance is not Kabuki theater

Brother Mike Blaska was renowned for his expertise in parliamentary procedure chairing the Dane County Board of Supervisors. He later taught the subject to county boards across the state.

“People appreciate a well run meeting,” he said.

That does not mean a rehearsed and scripted meeting, edited for television and formatted to fit the screen. But neither does it mean a free-for-all where mob action drives citizens from the chambers fearing for their safety — as occurs monthly at the Madison Board of Education.

Witch Trial

It frustrates the white lab coats here at Blaska Policy Werkes that the WI State Journal and the WI Freedom of Information Council fret that individual Madison school board members may do an informational sit-down with the superintendent of schools. Sunday’s news headline reads: “Madison schools test limits of open government with private board member meetings.” THAT is the big issue at Madison schools? Continue reading

Posted in Madison schools | 110 Comments