More Trump perspective (and more)

More indictments of Oath Keepers in the January 6 insurrection:

The new case describes the alleged Oath Keepers as being motivated in large part by former President Donald Trump, and an apocalyptic fear of a Biden presidency. One defendant, who was among those earlier indicted, Jessica Watkins, wrote in the weeks before Jan. 6 that if Mr. Biden became president, “our way of life as we know it is over,” the indictment said.

Ms. Watkins, 38, who served as an infantryman in the U.S. Army from 2001-2003 under her previous name, Jeremy David Watkins, was deployed to Afghanistan, and received an “other than honorable discharge” after “the Army determined that my presenting as a female was unacceptable for a soldier,” she wrote in a name-change filing in New York state. Ms. Watkins said she left her six-year tour of duty early because of her gender dysphoria, adding “I was not otherwise disciplined or prosecuted because of the extenuating circumstances of my medical condition.” She changed her name in 2005, court records show.

Kelly Meggs, one of the new defendants, wrote in a Facebook message in late December to another individual, “Trump said It’s gonna be wild!!!!!!! It’s gonna be wild!!!!!!! He wants us to make it WILD that’s what he’s saying. He called us all to the Capitol and wants us to make it wild!!! SirYesSir!!! Gentlemen we are heading to DC pack your shit!!”

Mr. Trump was impeached in the House last month for inciting the violent riot. The Senate voted Saturday to acquit him, with Mr. Trump’s attorneys arguing that he was using typical political rhetoric and didn’t act to foment a mob.

Six More Alleged Members of Oath Keepers Militia Indicted – WSJ

Violent MTF transexual Trump fanatic blindsided me. The "wild" stuff is, I think, exactly what Trump hoped for and got. They should have convicted him.


Having seen that 70% of Republicans reportedly believe something tantamount to "Biden stole the election," along with more other depressing poll results than I can remember, I’m more inclined to put "Period. Full stop." after endorsing the consensus of credentialed opinion.

I won’t always be right, but I’ll be wrong less often than if I say "Well a lot of people believe X, so we can’t be sure, so we really shouldn’t act on the opinions of those who believably say non-X."

Having said that, I quote for your consideration the opinion of one Hal Freeman, whose "credential" for writing about Russia is that he’s an Expat there with his younger Russian wife. Judge for yourself how that stacks up against journalists who don’t live there and may have their own biases against Russia and Putin:

I wrote a blog about [Alex] Navalny in September of 2020. His claim was that Putin’s hit men had tried to kill him by slipping him the nerve agent “Novichok.” …

I will set forth the basic reasons I don’t believe Navalny, but I don’t hide the fact that I don’t like him. He is a racist. I don’t use that term lightly, as folks commonly do in America now. I posted a video of him in my earlier blog referring to Muslims living in Russia whose ancestors were from the Caucasus Mountains as “cockroaches,” who need to be eliminated with a pistol. Before Trump and the whole Russia hoax on the elections, the New York Times used to report facts about Russia. Here is an excerpt from the Times, back before they were blinded by Trump Derangement Syndrome:

"He (Navalny) has appeared as a speaker alongside neo-Nazis and skinheads, and once starred in a video that compares dark-skinned Caucasus militants to cockroaches. While cockroaches can be killed with a slipper, he says that in the case of humans, ‘I recommend a pistol.’” Ellen Barry, NY Times 2011.

The U.S. media “narrative” has certainly changed over time. Now they tout Navalny as an honored leader of “the opposition.” Again, I will state as succinctly as possible why I think Navalny is lying when he says Kremlin messengers tried to kill him back in August, 2020.

The main reason is he changed his story too many times. When I wrote on him in September I mentioned that the first explanation his team gave was that Putin’s men put Novichok in his tea, which he drank at an airport restaurant. No one at that restaurant even remembered him being there. When his handlers were questioned how someone knew what establishment inside the airport he would stop at to drink tea, there was no answer. Was there a waiter there waiting with the Novichok in case he came in?

They not-so-deftly moved to a second explanation: Novichok was put in the water bottle from which he drank in his hotel room before departure. But then reporters discovered that there were at least 5 people in the room with him when the water was delivered. How did they know which bottle Navalny would drink from? Was it hotel staff who delivered it? Again, no real answers from the Navalny team.

So Navalny, now healthy, moved to a third explanation. He made a video that supposedly recorded a phone conversation he had with someone from the FSB (Federal Services of Security). In the call Navalny pretended to be an important person in the FSB, and wanted to know how they had tried to kill him and why it did not work.

The alleged security person Navalny was talking to claimed that they had put the Novichok in his clothes. They concentrated on packing it into the inner seam of the crotch of his underwear. All the Novichok absorbed into his system. He said Navalny survived because of the quick work of the medical team at the hospital when he landed.

Hal Freeman, Biden, Navalny, Protests and Propaganda


Does Limbaugh explain Trump?

There’s a tension between being a bomb-thrower and a leader, and the fact that so few people understand that today is emblematic of how dysfunctional our politics have become. Newt Gingrich, a creature of the Limbaugh era if ever there was one, never really figured out how to resolve that tension. But at least he tried when he was speaker (occasionally). Donald Trump, whom Limbaugh once said wasn’t a conservative, dismissed this tension altogether by simply redefining leadership as bomb-throwing. Trump was a piss-poor commander in chief, but he was the ultimate commentator in chief, hurling brickbats at the very government he ran.

Rich says Rush had an “absolutely unbreakable bond” with his listeners. Obviously, in the context of eulogizing Rush, that’s a fair comment. But it’s not entirely true. If that bond were unbreakable, Limbaugh would not have so often moved to stay on the good side of his audience. Like so much of the right Limbaugh helped create, when the people (or customers) moved, the “leaders” followed.

Of course, people change their views over time for all sorts of intellectually honest reasons, and I have no doubt many of Limbaugh’s evolutions can be explained in that light. But I also have no doubt that many can’t be. At the end of his career, Limbaugh was defending—or allowing himself to be understood as defending—political violence, conspiracy theories, and even secessionism.

If you want to defend that by saying, “We’ll that’s what a lot of right-wingers believe today,” I won’t argue with you. I’m just not sure it’s the defense you think it is.

Jonah Goldberg, Rush Limbaugh, RIP – The G-File


For five years, I tried to figure out the appeal of Donald Trump to an electoral majority of the country. I made essentially no progress.

Now, reading retrospectives on the late Rush Limbaugh, I’m starting to apprehend it, I think. Rush made the world in which owning the libs was its own summum bonum.

But that doesn’t mean I can see how to avoid a repeat. For instance, do I really want the Fairness Doctrine reinstated?


A proposal for reporters covering Republican candidates and officeholders over the next four years:

Every interview should begin with two questions.

Sir/Ma’am, I need one-word answers from you:

  • Who won the 2020 U.S. presidential election?
  • Was this the legitimate result of a free and fair election?

This shouldn’t take long. The questions can be asked in less than 5 seconds. The answers are one word each: “Biden” and “yes.”

Ask Every Republican These Two Questions


What if sometimes you have to choose between two goods? What if you actually can’t have both? Wow, that would really suck. Therefore it cannot be true.

Alan Jacobs, writing trade-offs from frigid Waco.


You can read most of my more impromptu stuff here. It should work in your RSS aggregator, like Feedly, should you want to make a habit of it.

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