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Irrelevant Gasbag Gingrich Bloviates About Trump’s Tremendous Crowd at Boy Scout Jamboree

I was watching the Faux News channel at the gym today while using the elliptical machine. Newt Gingrich, perennial bloviator and irrelevant husband of the Ambassador to the Vatican, was on Neil Cavuto’s show talking about Trump’s thoroughly disgusting “speech” to the Boy Scouts of America at their annual Jamboree yesterday.

At one point he remarked approvingly about the size of the crowd, over 40,000 (mostly adolescent boys). In an attempt to conflate the Jamboree with a political rally, he made it sound like all in attendance had been there only to hear Trump speak.

Neil Cavuto, bless his little heart, demurred gently but firmly by saying he, too, had been in attendance with his own son and went on to quickly state twice it was “a captive audience,” meaning all these pre-pubertal and pre-voting age children had been there for a completely different reason than to listen to a campaign-style narcissistic rant from the crazy person who just happens to inhabit the White House presently.

It wasn’t a full-throated smackdown of Newtie, but I must say it warmed the cockles of my heart.

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Trump’s Advice to Boy Scouts: Go to the Hottest Parties While You Can.

Presidential words to live by, as told to the Boy Scouts at their Jamboree:

During the speech, Trump attacked Obama, slammed “fake media” and trashed Clinton for not campaigning enough in Michigan. He also told a rambling story about a home builder, William Levitt, who “went personally bankrupt, and he was now much older. And I saw him at a cocktail party, and it was very sad because the hottest people in New York were at this party,” according to news reports. 

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Ooh, Ooh! Voter Fraud, Voter Fraud!

Trump speaking to the Boy Scouts at their annual Jamboree:

“[Clinton] was told she was going to win Michigan, and I said, well, wait a minute, the car industry is moving to Mexico. Why is she going to move — she’s there. Why are they allowing it to move? And by the way, do you see those car industry — do you see what’s happening, how they’re coming back to Michigan? They’re coming back to Ohio. They’re starting to peel back in.” [Applause.]

“And we go to Wisconsin — now, Wisconsin hadn’t been won in many, many years by a Republican. But we go to Wisconsin, and we had tremendous crowds. And I’d leave these massive crowds. I’d say, why are we going to lose this state? The polls — that’s also fake news. They’re fake polls. But the polls are saying — but we won Wisconsin.” [Applause.]

“So I have to tell you what we did, in all fairness, this is an unbelievable tribute to you and all of the other millions and millions of people that came out and voted for Make America Great Again.”

[Audience chants “USA! USA! USA!”]

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The traditional Scouting divisions are Cub Scouting for boys ages 7 to 11 years, and Boy Scouting for boys ages 11 to 18.  So according to Trump, it was all these illegal underage voters who put him over the top.

Way to go, Scouts!

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GOP to McCain: Suck It Up, Man. It’s Just a Brain Tumor.

Senate Republicans are still hoping John McCain makes it to Tuesday’s crucial Obamacare repeal vote.

The absence of the Arizona senator, who was diagnosed with brain cancer last week, has made getting 50 votes to start debate on the bill exceedingly difficult. GOP leaders are hoping he can surprise everyone and return Tuesday.

“They were trying to get approval [from his doctors] for his travel arrangements. I’ve personally volunteered to rent an RV,” said Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn of Texas. “But we haven’t heard anything.”

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Bring on the Fire Ants

From the Washington Post, on the cynicism of Republicans not knowing or caring what’s in the health care bill they will be voting on:

Instead, what they say is, “We made a promise, and we’re going to keep it.” If Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) handed them a bill saying that all children on Medicaid would be taken to the desert, buried up to their necks in the sand, and covered in fire ants, at least 40 of them would say, “It may not be perfect, but we have to keep the promise we made to repeal Obamacare, so I’m voting yes.”

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Our Country in a Nutshell

From the Washington Post:

In a new book entitled “The Death of Expertise: The Campaign against Established Knowledge and Why It Matters,” Tom Nichols describes Trump’s victory last November as “undeniably one of the most recent—and one of the loudest—trumpets sounding the impending death of expertise.”

The president defended his lack of specific policy knowledge during a rally on the eve of the Wisconsin primary in 2016. “They say, ‘Oh, Trump doesn’t have experts,’” Trump said. “You know, I’ve always wanted to say this: … The experts are terrible! They say, ‘Donald Trump needs a foreign policy adviser.’ … But supposing I didn’t have one, would it be worse than what we’re doing now?”

Nichols, a professor of National Security Affairs at the U.S. Naval War College in Rhode Island, believes the “death of expertise and its associated attacks on knowledge fundamentally undermine the republican system of government.”

“The abysmal literacy, both political and general, of the American public is the foundation for all of these problems. It is the soil in which all of the other dysfunctions have taken root and prospered, with the 2016 election only its most recent expression,” Nichols writes. “Americans have increasingly unrealistic expectations of what their political and economic system can provide. This sense of entitlement is one reason they are continually angry at ‘experts’ and especially at ‘elitists,’ a word that in modern American usage can mean almost anyone with any education who refuses to coddle the public’s mistaken beliefs. When told that ending poverty or preventing terrorism is a lot harder than it looks, Americans roll their eyes. Unable to comprehend all of the complexity around them, they choose instead to comprehend almost none of it and then sullenly blame experts, politicians and bureaucrats for seizing control of their lives.”

Professionals in every industry report that laypeople increasingly challenge their know-how.“No area of American life is immune to the death of expertise,” writes Nichols, who worked for the late Republican senator John Heinz (Pa.) early in his career. “Doctors routinely tussle with patients over drugs. Lawyers will describe clients losing money, and sometimes their freedom, because of unheeded advice. Teachers will relate stories of parents insisting that their children’s exam answers are right even when they’re demonstrably wrong. Realtors tell of clients who bought homes against their experienced advice and ended up trapped in a money pit.”

The 252-page book is packed with illustrations. “What I find so striking today is not that people dismiss expertise, but that they do so with such frequency, on so many issues, and with such anger,” Nichols laments. “It may be that attacks on expertise are more obvious due to the ubiquity of the Internet, the undisciplined nature of conversation on social media, or the demands of the twenty-four-hour news cycle. But there is a self-righteousness and fury to this new rejection of expertise that suggest, at least to me, that this isn’t just mistrust or questioning or the pursuit of alternatives: it is narcissism, coupled to a disdain for expertise as some sort of exercise in self-actualization.”

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Oopsie!

In a 2015 Fox Business Network interview, Scaramucci called Trump a “hack” and a bully and said he didn’t like how the presidential candidate talked about women.

“He’s a hack politician. … I’ll tell you who he’s going to be president of — you can tell Donald I said this — the Queens County bullies association,” he said.

Now Scaramucci has shifted from criticizing Trump to telling reporters several times he loves the president. He also apologized for calling Trump a hack and said the president still reminds him of his previous comment

“I should have never said that about him,” he told reporters at his first press briefing Friday, adding later: “Mr. President, if you’re listening, I personally apologize for the 50th time for saying that.”

Trump weighed in Saturday morning, saying Scaramucci wanted to endorse him but didn’t know he was going to run. But as The Washington Post’s Aaron Blake pointed out, Trump had been a candidate for a month when Scaramucci called him a hack.

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Non Sequitur of the Week

New White House press secretary Anthony “The Mooch” Scaramucci on Trump’s qualifications for president.

Or something…

“I’ve seen this guy throw a dead spiral through a tire, I’ve seen him at Madison Square Garden with a topcoat on, standing in the key and hitting foul shots and swishing them — he sinks three-foot putts,” Scaramucci said.
“I don’t see this as a guy who’s ever under siege. This is a very, very competitive person. Obviously there’s a lot of incoming that comes into the White House. But the President’s a winner and what we’re going to do is we’re going to do a lot of winning.”
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“If we don’t play my way, I’m taking the ball and going home.”
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Aw, Cut Them Some Slack. They Were New to This.

From CNN:

Following his release on Twitter of the email exchange between himself and Goldstone, Trump Jr. did an interview with Fox News’ Sean Hannity, a staunch supporter of the President. Trump Jr. said he would be willing to go under oath to speak about the meeting.
Sekulow [President Trump’s lawyer] pointed to Trump Jr.’s comments in the interview that he had now disclosed everything about the meeting.
“I think it speaks for itself,” Sekulow said.
Sekulow also maintained the meeting was legal and said people should not criticize the Trump campaign members for attending the meeting given the breakneck speed of the presidential campaign.
“I don’t think that’s fair to Donald Trump Jr., to Jared Kushner or to Manafort for that matter,” Sekulow said.
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Poor Jared Kushner and Paul Manafort. How can we expect them to know it’s illegal to conspire with a hostile foreign power in order to win an election? These guys were just babes in the woods caught up in the dizzying election campaign and it’s very unfair to hold them accountable.
Y’all should be ashamed of yourselves. Until the next shoe drops.
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Texas—Where You’re Free to Be the Samurai You’ve Always Wanted to Be

Once again, Texas lives up to its name as The Lone Brain Cell State:

Starting this fall, adults in Texas can openly carry knives with blades longer than 5.5 inches.

In fact, swords, spears, daggers, sabers, bowie knives and machetes are all perfectly fine to tote around. Pretty much anything you can whip out in a Dungeons and Dragons battle is fair game.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott signed the bill into law last month, but it doesn’t go into effect until September 1.
Under the existing law knives with blades longer than 5.5 inches could be purchased but not carried — with only limited exceptions.
There are some places where the new law won’t apply — including schools, prisons, hospitals, amusement parks or places of worship. Long blades are still banned at sports events. And you can’t bring your sword into a bar, either. The tiny colorful plastic ones that you stick on top of a cocktail, however, are under 5.5 inches, so those are still OK.
House Bill 1935 provides a common sense solution by prohibiting any knife with a blade over five-and-a-half inches in certain location restricted areas,” Rep. John Frullo, the Republican representative from Lubbock who authored the bill, told CNN in a statement.
Texas now joins Montana and Oklahoma. Both have both passed laws lifting their bans on certain bladed weapons, including swords.
The legislation stalled in May after a man was accused of using a hunting knife to kill one student and wound three others at the University of Texas at Austin. Frullo postponed debate on the legislation until a week later — but stood by his bill.
“It’s not making criminals out of people who have no intention of creating some type of criminal act,” Frullo told CNN affilliate Spectrum News in Austin at the time. Knife Rights, a national advocacy organization, supported the legislation but said there is still a ways to go to strike “those last remaining minor knife restrictions in Texas.”
“We won’t stop until Texas is as free as everyone thinks Texas is,” the group wrote in a statement on its website.
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