Reason Roundup

Trump Admin Throws Support Behind Exiled Iranians Who Were on U.S. and E.U. Terror Lists: Reason Roundup

Plus: "Tariffs are great!"

|

Siavosh Hosseini/NurPhoto/Sipa U/Newscom

The U.S. backlash to Trump's all-caps Iran tweet continues…as U.S. mounts Iranian propaganda mission. Trump "taunted an aspiring nuclear power with some of the harshest words we've heard from an American president," writes CNN's Chris Cillizza, scolding that "Twitter diplomacy—which is one of the many things that Trump has ushered in as president—isn't a tried-and-true approach to geopolitics."

Trump "won't be able to play [the same] game with Iran" as he did North Korea, writes Jarrett Blanc at Politico. And "despite what Trump may hope, there won't even be a Gulf version of the Singapore Summit: a made-for-TV drama that lowers hostilities without addressing underlying problems. Two obstacles stand in the way: us and them."

But all this focus on Trump-induced Twitter drama ignores what's actually happening in Iran and the actual actions the U.S. has taken there recently: namely, running a massive propaganda mission and once again backing potential terrorists to own the admins we don't like.

The Trump folks have "been ramping up rhetoric about what [the administration] calls Iran's 'malign' behavior in the region," notes NPR. "Administration officials also seem to be trying to encourage Iranians to rise up against their government." More:

Protests have mounted in recent weeks in Iran, as the country struggles with an economic crisis that has grown more severe since President Trump's decision in May to pull the U.S. out of the Iran nuclear deal and reimpose sanctions on the country.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has been tweeting about the protests — sometimes exaggerating them. He's trying to show Iranians that the Trump administration backs those opposing the Iranian leadership.

We've also been seeding stories, social media accounts, and other communication vehicles that push America's preferred version of events as well as generally attempt to foment anger and unrest among the Iranian people.

Axios reported earlier this month that Israel and the U.S. had "formed a joint working group a few months ago that is focused on internal efforts to encourage protests within Iran and pressure the country's government. "Nobody is seriously thinking about regime change," an Israeli on the team told Axios, "but this team is trying to see if we can use the internal weaknesses of the Iranian regime in order to create more pressure that will contribute to changing Iranian behavior."

Here's how Reuters put it last week:

The Trump administration has launched an offensive of speeches and online communications meant to foment unrest and help pressure Iran to end its nuclear program and its support of militant groups, U.S. officials familiar with the matter said.

When Russia tries this with us, we call it "hacking" our elections and charge them with criminally meddling in our politics. But America has always been the queen of do as I say, not as I do. And picking winners and losers in other countries' politics is one of our things, even if this sometimes means giving arms and support to violent extremists who have the same strategic enemies. The situation with the Trump administration and Iran is stacking up to be another one of these.

Iranian women rally against the removal of the People's Mujahedeen Organization from the EU terrorist list in 2015
MORTEZA NIKOUBAZL/REUTERS/Newscom

John Limbert, a former U.S. diplomat who served as deputy assistant secretary of state for Iran and was trapped there during the Iran hostage crisis, told NPR that "he worries about the influence of an Iranian exile group that advocates the overthrow of the Iranian government and was included on the U.S. terrorist list until 2012."

The group is called the Mujahedeen-e-Khalq, which means People's Mujahedeen Organization of Iran, also known by its initials MEK. "Their message is that the place is on the verge of overthrowing the Islamic Republic, which has been a claim for the last 40 years and that they, in particular, are the logical democratic, pluralistic replacement. Now, if you believe that, I have some Florida real estate I could sell you," he said.

Trump's national security adviser John Bolton is a supporter of the MEK. And U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley retweeted a video posted last week on an official MEK account.

But never mind who MEK is—let's do some destabilizing in the Middle East! It's been so long, and the Iraq War cheerleaders are getting so restless

FREE MARKETS

"Tariffs are the greatest!"

QUICK HITS

  • Fact Check: "President Trump tweeted a series of false or misleading claims over four days, ranging from the Russia investigation to NATO funding to North Korea to the price of soybeans."
  • Some 463 migrant parents separated from their children by U.S. agents are no longer here, with many having been deported before being reunited with their children, officials admitted Monday.
  • Democrats like Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (N.D.) are ready to resist Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh—until it might hurt them at the polls.
  • Florida's stand-your-ground law is at the center of another controversy, this time after one man killed another in a dispute over a parking spot.

Advertisement

NEXT: Restrictionists Are Abusing Milton Friedman

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. The U.S. backlash to Trump’s all-caps Iran tweet continues…

    TREASON

    1. “When Russia tries this with us, we call it “hacking” our elections and charge them with criminally meddling in our politics. But America has always been the queen of do-as-I-say, not-as-I-do. And picking winners and losers in other country’s politics is kind of one of our things, even if this sometimes means giving arms and support to violent extremists who have the same strategic enemies.”

      Good point. Too bad no one at Reason could connect the dots on this until it was Iran we were talking about.

      Russia= bad
      Iran= good

      makes about as much sense as

      Russia= good
      Iran= bad

      1. Has anyone ever said that Iran is not bad?
        Another man of straw.

        Saying that because the US seeks to influence others’ government, we should allow others into our elections is not putting America First. I’m not a big fan of American exceptionalism, but to come to the conclusion that we shouldn’t defend our democracy isn’t in our interest.

        Backing MEK isn’t either, but that doesn’t excuse not defending ourselves.

        1. It’s like an endless parade of ridiculous assertions with you, Chandler.

          What should be done with Russia besides arming Ukraine, putting missiles back in eastern Europe, and imposing sanctions, which has been done by this administration.

          And steal internal emails from the DNC does not “harm democracy”. Such a stupid talking point

          1. I thought we were talking about Iran?

            1) Supporting NATO. Being crystal clear on Article 5.
            2) Having a clear statement on sanctions. Not taking credit for sanctions forced on him by Congress over his objection. Not hanging out Haley to dry when she announced the sanctions policy, only to say she must have been momentarily confused.
            3) Not having private meetings with Putin.
            4) Taking action to safeguard our electoral systems. If he truly thought Russia was not on his side, why would he oppose safeguarding the elections?
            5) Supporting the investigation to determine what happened in 2016.

            Stealing emails is a crime. Asking for and receiving stolen property that you know is stolen is a crime. At least one congressional candidate did that. No, it’s not yet proven in court, but you can read the emails.

            We have long had laws against foreign agents making political donations. That’s a crime, and you shouldn’t excuse it because it helps your party.

    2. Hello.

  2. …scolding that “Twitter diplomacy?which is one of the many things that Trump has ushered in as president?isn’t a tried-and-true approach to geopolitics.”

    You know what does seem to be considered tried and true in some circles? SPEWING FAKE NEWS. (Feel free to use that, Mr. President.)

    1. Reason’s own writers won’t hat-tip the commenters for the links and bon mots they post, and you think Trump’s going to give you credit for that pearl?

      1. I’m offering it for free.

        Dammit, he’s a good negotiator.

        1. The hair apparently hypnotized you.

  3. Fact Check: “President Trump tweeted a series of false or misleading claims over four days, ranging from the Russia investigation to NATO funding to North Korea to the price of soybeans.”

    Finally, someone has the guts, completely free of bias, to fact check a president.

    1. Nothing but facts at the WaPo, that’s for sure. And no I am not clicking on that link.

      1. It’s actually a porn link. ENB Rick Rolled us, but with porn

      2. Pretty much.

        I go to WaPo and NYT for the jokes.

        1. Feeling masochistic, I clicked and soon enough came across this gem:

          There’s no evidence to suggest that Mueller and his team are dragging out their investigation to hurt Republicans’ chances in the midterm elections. Mueller is a Republican, as is Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein, who appointed Mueller and oversees his work.

          Oh, that settles it then!

          1. I love that Lefty claim that being nominated by a Republican president or appointed by a Republican means that traitors to the Constitution never hid as RINOs.

  4. Those WaPo fact checks are less “factual” and more “opinion” masquerading as fact

      1. “”Moreover, the FBI’s former deputy director, Andrew McCabe, told Congress that the bureau tried very hard to verify Steele’s information but could provide no points of verification beyond the fact that Page did travel to Russia in July 2016 ? a fact that required no effort to corroborate since the trip was unconcealed and widely known. (Page delivered a public commencement address at the New Economic School.) Furthermore, in British legal proceedings, Steele himself has described the information he provided to the FBI as “raw intelligence” that was “unverified.”””‘

        Unverified information used in a secret court. Yet few people have a problem with it.

        1. So transparent you can’t even see it.

  5. Democrats like Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (N.D.) are ready to resist Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh?until it might hurt them at the polls.

    Resist at all non-political cost?

    1. Sounds like Senator Heitkamp has all the principles required to be a successful politician and congress-critter.

      1. For once I agree with Veneman. She was elected to represent the people of North Dakota. Perhaps principles can involve issues beyond your own moral narcissism?

        1. “”She was elected to represent the people of North Dakota””

          I often remind people who complains about other people’s Senators and Congresscritter that it’s not their job to represent you. I can’t stand Pelosi. But I know she’s none of my business.

          1. This is true Vic. Pelosi is a lunatic. But she was elected by lunatics to represent lunatics.

          2. If only she would stay out of my business and just stick it to her constituents

            1. She represents her district in matters of federal legislation. Just as yours represents your district.

  6. “Twitter diplomacy …isn’t a tried-and-true approach to geopolitics”

    and if it hasn’t been tried before, it must not be tried. Stick to the familiar failed approaches

    1. Yeah, the rampant successes of modern diplomacy in re Iran are noted. Perhaps he should tweet AND send billions over on a plane as ransom.

    2. Can we find a middle ground maybe? How about 1 tweet storm per month limited to 1 nation.

      1. Most transparent presidency evah!

  7. “Nobody is seriously thinking about regime change,” an Israeli on the team told Axios, “but this team is trying to see if we can use the internal weaknesses of the Iranian regime in order to create more pressure that will contribute to changing Iranian behavior.”

    Because seriously, meddling in elections is NOT OK.

    1. “”meddling in elections is NOT OK.”‘

      Tell that to the US.

  8. The U.S. backlash to Trump’s all-caps Iran tweet continues…as U.S. mounts Iranian propaganda mission. Trump “taunted an aspiring nuclear power with some of the harshest words we’ve heard from an American president,” writes CNN’s Chris Cillizza, scolding that “Twitter diplomacy?which is one of the many things that Trump has ushered in as president?isn’t a tried-and-true approach to geopolitics.”

    How exactly does some dipshit who works as CNN constitute a backlash? You need to get out more Elizabeth. People like Chizilla matter about as much as the guy screaming at the washing machines at the laundromat.

    1. as much as the guy screaming at the washing machines at the laundromat.

      His name is Wolf Blitzer.

      1. Wolf just took over that job after the sad passing of Special Ed Schultz.

        1. Ah, Mr. Ed.

          Why the hell did I ever find that show funny?

          1. I was always a Francis the Talking Mule man myself. But Ed had his moments.

          2. Alcohol can really twist your mind.

          3. Mr. Ed was terrible. I would sit through any after-school television except when that came on.

            1. But Francis the talking mule was awesome. He had Ed beat all day.

      2. I can totally picture Wolf wailing at washing machines at the laundromat

        1. I would have instinctively went with Chris Matthews, but John referenced CNN in his original post…

    2. It’s a WHITE LASH!

      /makes white whipping sound.

  9. COMPLETELY EXCLUDED from this conversation, both in the event and in the reporting on it? ACTUAL SEX WORKERS, who know more about what sex workers need than anyone else. But funny how no one ever wants to hear from us while they try to “solve the problem” of our existence. https://t.co/t3RQNPJvTd
    ? Mistress Matisse (@mistressmatisse) July 24, 2018

    We don’t ask victims for solutions. If the victims had the solutions then they wouldn’t be victims. Duh. Now get in jail where you belong.

    1. The way they want to solve the problem is a ‘final solution’.
      Eliminate the sex workers, whatever it takes.

  10. Trump “won’t be able to play [the same] game with Iran” as he did North Korea, writes Jarrett Blanc at Politico.

    “Also, he shouldn’t have been able to play that game with North Korea in the first place!”

  11. http://www.washingtonexaminer……f-red-tape

    EPA under Pruitt slashed $350 million in regulations, 300,000 hours of red tape

    What a monster!!

    1. But they recycled the tape, right?

      1. It just goes into storage for later use.

    2. To bad he was a corrupt politician. Really liked what he was doing and hope it continues without him there.

      1. I think some of his purchases were unacceptable. If you ran an agency where nearly 99% of the bureaucrats wanted you out, because you were wrecking their gravy train, you would want a sound proof telephone booth too.

        1. God knows leaking isn’t an issue with this admin and God knows EPA hacks wouldn’t want to eavesdrop on him…

  12. Mrs. Alan Greenspan has some thoughts:

    @mitchellreports
    “Sen Rand Paul inexplicably suggests US has interfered in foreign elections over decades to justify Kremlin hacking and weaponizimg stolen democratic emails in 2016 – this after he was 1 of only 2 senators voting against resolution supporting NATO. ???”

    1. It’s the three question marks that really sell it, Mr. President. Er, I mean, Ms. Mitchell.

      1. The president would not punctuate correctly. Strikingly similar levels of ignorance, though

    2. Face it, Andrea Mitchell would be credible with some folks if she announced “the sun always rises in the West.”

    3. “”weaponizimg stolen democratic emails in 2016″”

      That’s funny. Bringing corruption to light is weaponizing? I’m sure corrupt governments, unions, ect would agree.

      I don’t think Paul was using it as justification, just as a possible reason.

      1. Did the Democrats weaponize a “third-rate” burglary at the DNC in 1972?

  13. “Kavanaugh Could Tip Supreme Court Against Gun Control Laws. If confirmed, Judge Brett Kavanaugh could swing the Supreme Court further in favor of expanding access to guns and striking down gun control laws.” #StopKavanaugh

    Kavanaugh is literally the opposite of what libertarians should want in a Supreme Court justice. He thinks the Constitution protects the right to own a gun, but not the right to access abortion care? Only a highly ideological, deeply partisan reading of the document could produce such an absurd conclusion.

    Contact your US Senators and get their promise to #StopKavanaugh!

    1. See this is a bad parody of a left libertarian, who overall support gun ownership as much as non-left libertarians

      1. No they do not. They support gun ownership. That much is true. But when push comes to shove it is the first thing they are willing to walk away from if doing so furthers another cause. Non-left Libertarians see gun ownership as if not the most important issue, one of the top two or three. Left Libertarians see gun ownership as an issue that they must support out of consistency but never something that should be given priority over other more important issues like Mexicans, Pot, and ass sex.

        1. I didn’t realize that “libertarians” get to pick and choose which personal liberties are more important than others based on some left–right (or non-left as you put it) spectrum.

          If that’s the case, then what distinguishes “non-left” libertarianism from conservatism and left libertarianism from progressivism? The way you describe them they sound pretty much the same. I guess I’ve been reading the Nolan Chart wrong all these years.

          1. That was my thought too, but I didn’t want to get into a debate over mindless labels

            1. We don’t cotton to not wanting to get into a debate over mindless labels around these parts…

          2. I didn’t realize that “libertarians” get to pick and choose which personal liberties are more important than others based on some left–right (or non-left as you put it) spectrum.

            You don’t get to, you have to. You only get one vote in an election and no candidate is going to perfectly reflect your values. Moreover, values conflict. You can’t always protect every value equally given the circumstances. This is why elections are an exercise in revealed preference versus stated preferences.

            What you are really saying here is that you didn’t realize there was such a thing as a moral dilemma. Well, sadly there is and you sometimes have to choose among a set of less than ideal options. In fact, that is almost always how life works.

            1. You only get one vote in an election and no candidate is going to perfectly reflect your values.

              I think you proved my point. We’re stuck with a two-party system that resembles the traditional left–right spectrum. This is why we always get to settle with someone on the right who we agree with 45% of the time or someone on the left who we agree with 35% of the time.

              I refused to play the game starting in 2004 and in a major election I haven’t voted for a (D) and only one (R) since.

              1. Even if we had a ten party system the same would be true. Moreover, even if it were not true that wouldn’t change the fact that circumstances often make you choose between competing values. If they didn’t, there would be no such thing as a moral dilemma.

                You can refuse to vote all you like. That too is making a choice that has consequences. Someone else will be voting and the results of that election will have real effects on the world that you are in some measure responsible for. Fortunately, you live in a time and a place where the effects of one party winning or losing isn’t large enough to create much of a moral dilemma. If you were not so lucky and lived in say 1917 Russia where your refusal to stand up for the imperfect Kerensky government helped the Communists take over, your choosing to opt out would be a serious moral failure.

                1. Even if we had a ten party system the same would be true.

                  That’s not true, at least in my case. For all his “impurities” as a libertarian, I agreed with 90% of what Gary Johnson campaigned on. Settling for a party that I tend to agree with on 90-95% of the issues is a lot different than a party that I agree with on roughly half the issues (Republicans).

                  1. I agreed with 90% of what Gary Johnson

                    And you didn’t consider that 10% to be valuable enough to vote on. Had that 10% included something you really valued, that would not be true. In this case, Johnson was willing to force people to bake wedding cakes, which is not Libertarian, and you were willing to overlook that because he supported other things you consider to be more important. Suppose instead of supporting forcing bakers to bake gay wedding cakes his bad view was something you really valued. Suppose Johnson wanted to close the borders and was anti-immigration but was all about making sure the government didn’t force anyone to bake a cake. In that case, you would not have voted for him even though you agreed with the other 90% of his views. The decision to vote is a qualitative one. Just because you agree with 90% of what he says doesn’t mean you will vote for him. It depends on how much you value the 10% that you don’t agree with him on.

                    You just proved my point and gave an example of what I am talking about.

          3. The Nolan Chart is lame.

            Libertarians are Centrist as Libertarians are not the opposite of Authoritarians. Libertarians are not for absolute Liberty nor absolute authority.

            The chart ignore capitalism and individual rights.

            The Nolan chart implies that conservatives are fundamentally different from leftists, but they are not.

            The Nolan chart hands leftists the term “liberal,” as if that term doesn’t mean advocate of liberty.

            The Nolan chart treats economic liberty and personal liberty as categorically different when, in fact, the former is a species of the latter.

            On a spectrum both ends are maximum authoritarianism. Libertarianism is in the middle as it embraces the centrist view of maximum liberty and individual rights under a the rule of law set forth by a Constitution.

      2. That’s because he’s a parody of an actual leftist pretending to be a left-libertarian.

        1. It’s a meta parody. Now I get it.

      3. First, I’m not a parody.

        Second, left-libertarians actually realize that “gun rights” are not nearly as fundamental as abortion rights or immigrants’ rights. I just posted this ACLU link the other day: A Pro-Liberty Case for Gun Restrictions. Do you think the ACLU would ever make “A Pro-Liberty Case for Abortion Restrictions”? Of course not. And they shouldn’t.

        See also Michael Hihn’s helpful posts explaining how common sense gun safety legislation does not violate the Constitution.

        1. Of course, you are a parody. And sometimes, like when you claim you are not a parody or make absurd “freedom is slavery” claims like gun restrictions make us more free, you are a funny one.

        2. “See also Michael Hihn’s helpful posts explaining how common sense gun safety legislation does not violate the Constitution.”

          10/10

        3. “”First, I’m not a parody.””

          Yes you are.

          And often a pretty good one.

          “”Second, left-libertarians actually realize that “gun rights” are not nearly as fundamental as abortion rights or immigrants’ rights””

          That’s what were talking about, cause that’s some funny shit.

          Regardless of anyone’s stance on guns or abortions, it should be clear that a right to use a tool for self defense or to overthrow a tyrannical government is more fundamental to human existence than aborting a fetus.

        4. “gun rights” are not nearly as fundamental as abortion rights

          They are not in opposition. Arm fetuses now.

    2. EVERY TIME I see the name Alyssa Milano, I think it’s someone completely different. And then I search her up and am completely disappointed.

      1. Her looks peaked when she was about 17. Then she moved on to making soft porno movies and it was all down hill from there.

        1. Be fair, she was pretty smoking hot on “Charmed”.

          1. They have better makeup people in popular shows.

    3. “Kavanaugh is literally the opposite of what libertarians should want in a Supreme Court justice. He thinks the Constitution protects the right to own a gun, but not the right to access abortion care?”

      Trump isn’t a libertarian.

      The senate that’s confirming him isn’t libertarian.

      Why would we expect to get a libertarian?

      The question isn’t whether Kavanaugh is the justice we want. The question is what we’re likely to get as the alternative.

      If they don’t confirm Kavanaugh, we probably won’t get another nominee until after the midterms. If the Democrats take the senate, we probably won’t get anyone confirmed that’s better than Kavanaugh.

      Your opposition to Kavanaugh needs to be justified against that reality.

      1. Dammit, Ken, I thought you were too smart to seriously argue with OBL.

        You let me down today, Ken. You let me down.

      2. I would hold out for someone who respects the Constitution, regardless of the political calculations.

        1. A Democrat controlled senate would only approve someone who doesn’t give a shit about respecting the Constitution–certainly not as it pertains to the First and Second Amendments.

          You’re unlikely to get someone as good as Kavanaugh.

  14. http://www.nationalreview.com/…..e-dossier/

    I prefaced my remark about the judges with an acknowledgment of my own personal embarrassment. When people started theorizing that the FBI had presented the Steele dossier to the FISA court as evidence, I told them they were crazy: The FBI, which I can’t help thinking of as my FBI after 20 years of working closely with the bureau as a federal prosecutor, would never take an unverified screed and present it to a court as evidence. I explained that if the bureau believed the information in a document like the dossier, it would pick out the seven or eight most critical facts and scrub them as only the FBI can ? interview the relevant witnesses, grab the documents, scrutinize the records, connect the dots. Whatever application eventually got filed in the FISA court would not even allude en passant to Christopher Steele or his dossier. The FBI would go to the FISA court only with independent evidence corroborated through standard FBI rigor…

    It turns out, however, that the crazies were right and I was wrong. The FBI (and, I’m even more sad to say, my Justice Department) brought the FISA court the Steele-dossier allegations, relying on Steele’s credibility without verifying his information.

    FBI Hack Andrew McCarthy grows up.

    1. All charges or guilty pleas on any case with the Steele document should be removed. If the government wants to file again, without using the Steele document, go for it.

      1. There is tape of Clapper and Comey and everyone involved with this saying in the Spring of 2017 that there was no FISA warrant. The media excoriated Trump for claiming there was. Then when the existence of the FISA warrant could no longer be denied, they claimed that the Steele Dossier had nothing to do with it. Then they called Nunez a liar when he said that it did and that they lied about it being paid for by the Clinton campaign. Then last Saturday they release the actual application, heavily redacted but hoping no one will notice it on a Saturday evening, and sure enough, they not only relied upon the Steel Dossier but failed to tell the court its actual origins.

      2. And, that’s a total of zero. Steele supported (but wasn’t entirely) probable cause.
        Steele was not a matter of proof beyond reasonable doubt.

        1. “”Steele supported (but wasn’t entirely) probable cause”‘

          Prove it.

        2. Steele was a matter that should not have been in front of the court at all.

          1. It was one aspect that supported probable cause. As the indictment said, the dossier was funded by political opponents, but the source had provided accurate intelligence in the past.

            In addition, Page had publicly said that he was a Kremlin advisor. Other, independent sources had shown another campaign aid to be a Kremlin agent (Papadopolous). He made a trip to Russia during the campaign. He had previously been recruited by a spy ring that was busted. There are tapes of the Russian spies discussing their success, but also calling him an idiot.

            It would have been malpractice not to get a warrant here. And that’s just the publicly available evidence.

            1. “”but the source had provided accurate intelligence in the past.””

              That doesn’t matter. What matters is the accuracy of what is being presented at that time. The FBI has a responsibility to ensure the accuracy of the information, which they failed to do. The failure to confirm the accuracy before presenting it to the court is the reason it should not have been there at all.

            2. “”””Moreover, the FBI’s former deputy director, Andrew McCabe, told Congress that the bureau tried very hard to verify Steele’s information but could provide no points of verification beyond the fact that Page did travel to Russia in July 2016″”

              From the FBI’s deputy director.

        3. Now you’re just making shit up. Sad!

    2. “It turns out, however, that the crazies were right and I was wrong. The FBI (and, I’m even more sad to say, my Justice Department) brought the FISA court the Steele-dossier allegations, relying on Steele’s credibility without verifying his information.”

      That’s called “intellectual honesty”.

      It’s sad that we live in a world where intellectual honesty needs to be pointed out and congratulated. In a better world, intellectual dishonesty would be like punching your grandma in the face–something you’re expected not to do.

      In a better world, intellectual honesty wouldn’t be the exception.

      1. Fair point. He deserves credit for admitting he was wrong.

  15. When Russia tries this with us, we call it “hacking” our elections and charge them with criminally meddling in our politics. But America has always been the queen of do-as-I-say, not-as-I-do.

    Umm, wasn’t Reason considering this attitude treasonous a few days ago?

    1. But, now we’re talking about Iran, so it’s different or something

    2. Gotta protect those Muslims.

      Russians are ‘white’, so….

  16. “Democrats like Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (N.D.) are ready to resist Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh?until it might hurt them at the polls.”

    Uh, is it shocking that elected officials might be influenced by the people who, you know, elected them?

    1. “Yes, it is”

      – EU president

  17. Axios reported earlier this month that Israel and the U.S. had “formed a joint working group a few months ago that is focused on internal efforts to encourage protests within Iran and pressure the country’s government.

    Neo-cons war boners engage!

  18. http://www.cnn.com/2018/07/23/…..index.html

    The mob turns on Trevor Noah.

    1. I just watched the video and turned the volume on my computer down low since I’m at work… People are freaking out about that??? I’ve heard more offensive jokes in church.

      1. I agree. I can’t stand Noah but I really don’t see how it is worth being angry over. Like everything Noah does it is painfully unfunny. But I don’t how anyone but a nut could get worked up about it.

        1. That’s because you aren’t woke, shitlord.

        2. One of the main differences between authoritaraianism and totalitarianism is that where authoritarians use force to control what we do, totalitarians feel it necessary to control what we think.

          What Noah did was unforgivable because he’s a media figure, and if the left can’t depend on a media figure not to commit such a heinous thought crime in public, then what’s the point of having him in the media?

          We can’t have people thinking that racist jokes are forgivable.

          If he can turn this experience into a lesson for racist rednecks everywhere, that might save him–especially if he’s from a preferred identity group. However, he’s proven himself undependable.

          Brighter lights have been shown the door for less.

        3. It is now fashionable to be a nut.

        4. I wonder if a lot of the public outrage of this nature has its roots in the anti-bullying campaigns that started in the late 90’s after Columbine. Kids are taught at an early age to berate and ostracize “bullies”, but there is no clear-cut, objective definition of what exactly makes someone a bully. Good intentions, unintended consequences…

          1. We can’t have people thinking that racist jokes are forgivable.

            That’s what this is about, and I don’t think these consequences are unintended.

            They want people to be afraid of saying things that break their rules.

          2. Kids are taught at an early age to berate and ostracize “bullies”, but there is no clear-cut, objective definition of what exactly makes someone a bully.

            Why sure there is–

            People who berate and ostracize others are bullies.

        5. There’s a hilarious campaign video out there for a lefty Australian that has a bunch of people urging voters to support “Australia’s first aboriginal representative”. They get to the end of the video and show the actual candidate, and it turns out she’s whiter than an 80s Valley Girl.

    2. “”The mob turns on Trevor Noah.””

      The mob always needs a target for it’s anger. Comedians are easy prey.

  19. Trump looking into revoking security clearances for Brennan, other top Obama officials

    Trump is awesome!

    Obama drones never saw this coming.

  20. “When Russia tries this with us, we call it “hacking” our elections and charge them with criminally meddling in our politics. But America has always been the queen of do-as-I-say, not-as-I-do.”

    This takes “fucking retarded” to a whole new level.

    It’s bad enough to ignore the fact that Iran violated the NPT and forfeited the right to enrich their own uranium. It’s even worse to ignore that Iran is willing to suffer crippling sanctions rather than return to compliance with the NPT and obtain uranium enriched sufficiently for civilian purposes from elsewhere. It’s bad that you’re effectively defending a vicious dictatorship from valid protests by its own people against its aggressive foreign policy and horrific domestic policies.

    But that wasn’t bad enough! No, you gotta go full retard and accuse the Trump administration of hypocrisy–for violating an American media narrative?! Are you suggesting that because the FBI ran interference for the Clinton campaign by way of the Steele Dossier, that the United States shouldn’t impose sanctions on Iran for violating the NPT? Are you suggesting that because the Russians used Facebook for advertising, that we shoudln’t help the Iranian people protest against the vicious totalitarian dictatorship that oppresses them?!

    That’s fucking retarded.

    1. I believe the answer to all the questions you ask Ken is “Yes”.

      1. Just to be clear, the idea that the United States shouldn’t pursue its security interests if doing so is hypocritical in some way is merely retarded. The idea the Trump administration shouldn’t pursue our security interests if it opens us up to charges of hypocrisy for emulating some media narrative rises to the level of fucking retarded.

        1. Nobody is saying that he shouldn’t be supporting MEK, a group that until recent successful lobbying was designated a terrorist organization and had participated in the 1979 revolution, because of Russia.

          People are saying it because we should have learned our lesson about supporting the enemy of our enemies. They are not our friend. We supported the Taliban and Al Qaeda against the USSR. We supported Iran versus Iraq and we supported Iraq vs Iran. We have been propping up the Saudi dictators for years.

          Also, people are saying a deal that resulted in 100% of Iran’s highly enriched uranium being removed from the country is a good thing.

          1. “We supported the Taliban and Al Qaeda against the USSR”

            We supported the Mujahideen against the Soviets–to spectacular effect. Soviet failures in Afghanistan had a dramatic impact on the way the USSR dissolved. Countering and frustrating Soviet expansionism had a spectacular effect in seeing the USSR dissolve without an exchange of nuclear ICBMs. It could have ended differently, and if the USSR had been allowed to expand, the Cold War might still be raging today.

            Anybody who says that we shouldn’t have supported the USSR’s enemies in Afghanistan circa 1980 because if we did, Al Qaeda might crash a number of hijacked airliners into U.S. targets circa 2001–after the USSR peacefully imploded–is being ridiculous.

            The Soviet Union was a greater threat to American security than Al Qaeda ever was, so even IF IF IF, someone in 1980 could have seen them coming from more than 20 years away, the suggestion that we shouldn’t have used the Mujahideen to counter the Soviets in Afghanistan because of Al Qaeda would have been specious.

            The future is always uncertain. That’s a terrible reason not to act in our own best interests given the information we have today.

          2. “Also, people are saying a deal that resulted in 100% of Iran’s highly enriched uranium being removed from the country is a good thing.”

            Obama’s deal did no such thing.

            Obama’s deal gave them the ability to enrich their own uranium in the future–despite the fact that they forfeited that right by the terms of the NPT when they started enriching uranium in secret.

            1. But it already happened.

              As a direct result of the Iran deal, they have zero 20% Uranium.

              They already had the ability to enrich uranium, and they were doing it. Under the deal, they had no ability and gave up everything they had. Now, with the deal abrogated, they are returning to enriching. If you think Iran having enriched Uranium is a good thing, then Trump is successful.

              1. You don’t seem to get the fact that they can enrich more in the future, and that’s the objection.

                Once they violated the NPT by enriching uranium in secret, the gave up the right to enrich their own uranium in the future.

                Obama’s deal lets them enrich their uranium in the future, and that is unacceptable.

                P.S. Obama’s deal is also unconstitutional, whereas the NPT was ratified by the senate.

                1. And now, they can enrich more today! At least, because of the deal, they lost their existing stockpile.

                  You’re trading a theoretical possible future problem for one actually existing today.

                  1. “You’re trading a theoretical possible future problem for one actually existing today.”

                    The purpose of the NPT is stop the enrichment of nuclear material for weapons in the future. What’s actually existing today is that they would rather suffer crippling sanctions than abide by the NPT.

                    What Iran has done in the past is irrelevant. You’re pointing to a red herring. The whole point of the NPT is to stop them from acquiring nuclear weapons in the future.

                    Your supposed solution doesn’t even address the problem of what they can do in the future.

                    By the terms of the NPT, they have forfeited the right to enrich their own uranium in the future , and it is self-evident from their behavior that they would rather suffer crippling sanctions than abide by the terms of the NPT as it regards the enrichment of uranium and the requirement that uranium only be enriched–under observation–rather than in secret.

                    You can play word games until the cows come home and point to red herrings all day. That won’t change the facts.

              2. “”As a direct result of the Iran deal, they have zero 20% Uranium.””

                That they will publicly admit.

  21. Democrats like Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (N.D.) are ready to resist Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh?until it might hurt them at the polls.

    Awwww, are you butthurt, Lizzie the Lezzie? You sound pretty butthurt!

    1. …and now his love has inverted into hate. You have to hate to see that happen.

  22. Florida’s stand-your-ground law is at the center of another controversy, this time after one man killed another in a dispute over a parking spot.

    DAMMIT FLORIDA MAN!

    1. Well obviously we have to force people to retreat. Otherwise, we’ll all start shooting each other in disputes over a parking spot.

      Oh, and although this probably doesn’t have anything to do with it, we should probably ban assault weapons too–because hate speech isn’t free speech.

    2. Everyone keeps splitting hairs over whether his actions were reasonable. By a strict reading of self-defense law, they were not. My punching you does not give you the right to kill me. I think self-defense law is bunk in this circumstance. The guy he shot ran up and pushed him pretty violently to the ground. Sure, once the guy pulled a gun, the guy who pushed him down started to back off. And that is why so many people are angry about this. And I understand their point. Ultimately, I really have no sympathy for the guy who was shot. If you are the aggressor in a situation, you pretty much deserve whatever you get. I would never vote to convict that guy of anything were I on a jury.

      1. “My punching you does not give you the right to kill me”

        Don’t bring a fist to a gun fight

      2. “I would never vote to convict that guy of anything were I on a jury.”

        And that’s what juries are for.

        Because someone claims protection from a law incorrectly doesn’t mean the law needs to be changed.

        It also doesn’t mean that the jury will necessarily convict him–regardless of what the law says.

        A jury decision is like a box of chocolates–and that’s the way it’s supposed to be.

      3. Makes me think of an incident around ten years ago where some kid was going around decking strangers for fun. One of the people he clocked hit his head on a brick when he fell, and died as a result. The kid was convicted of murder.

        Would have been better if one of the kid’s victims had shot him before that innocent, old man died on the sidewalk.

        1. Yes, it would have been. Also, if the kid had understood he was in danger of getting shot, he might not have done it in the first place and both him and the old man would still be alive.

          I honestly don’t see how having a rule that says if you attack someone they have a legal right to kill you in self defense is a bad thing.

          1. I agree. A person can be killed with one punch, or one shove. Hit that brainpan just right and that’s all she wrote. That means that any attack, even if it’s “just” a punch or a shove, could be deadly. So in any situation where someone is attacked, they can justifiably fear for their lives, and act accordingly. In my opinion.

            1. Are you being sarcastic here or not?

        2. Knock out game!

          I remember that.

          They’d put it on YouTube.

          1. Thanks for depressing me. I’m gonna go look at happy ferret videos now.

        3. “Marvell Weaver, 17, of Lansing, Michigan, recently lost the so-called “Point ’em out, knock ’em out” game when he was shot twice by his intended victim and arrested, reports WILX.

          On Feb. 26th, Weaver was in a van with two friends looking for random victims, when he spotted a man waiting at a bus stop. He hopped out of the van and quickly attacked the man with a faulty Taser.

          “I saw the van circle twice, and the second time three kids came out,” said the unidentified victim. “I didn’t suspect anything. I hadn’t any enemies, or any reason to believe they would be looking to do anything to me.”

          The man, who was waiting on six-year-old daughter, was legally registered to carry a firearm and he pulled his .40 caliber pistol and shot Weaver twice ? once in the leg and once near his spine.

          Weaver is now serving one year in jail, but says that he should be serving more.

          “It was just a lesson learned,” Weaver said. “I wish I hadn’t played the game at all.”

          http://newsone.com/2787594/mar…..kout-game/

          1. A happy ending for a change.

    3. Must have been an awesome parking spot. Bet their moms are proud.

      1. I bet the last thing that went through the one guy’s head before the bullet was how stupid he was to get into it over a parking spot.

        1. The killer was being aggressive to the guy’s wife in front of his kid. He was protecting his family. The killer had been asked not to harass people before. But, his gun gave him the confidence to get in peoples’ faces, knowing he could legally shoot them if they objected.

          If the victim had a gun, by the same argument, he could have shot the guy to protect his wife and claimed he was worried for her safety.

          The evidence shows that stand your ground laws increase homicides and there is no evidence they decrease crime.

          1. “”The killer was being aggressive to the guy’s wife in front of his kid. He was protecting his family””

            Verbally aggressive because the car was parked was unlawfully parked in a handicap spot. Not that I agree with verbal aggressiveness over that but I could imagine a “woke” liberal shouting at someone for the same infraction.

            But then the husband crossed the line by physically assaulting the guy. This was needless escalation which gave the killer the legal excuse he needed and possibly wanted.

            I don’t see any winners in this story, just losers.

            1. How are you to say if this guy feared for his family? The altercation could have turned from him aggressively yelling at a woman to pulling out his gun and shooting her in seconds. You don’t harass a woman, even if she may be parked illegally, without worrying about what her husband would do. I can’t blame the guy. If I saw some guy getting in my wife’s face, I might not react peacefully.

              The law enabled the guy to be aggressive and shoot the guy standing up for his wife. An armed society is not a polite society, it’s a society that leads to people having holes in them.

              1. “”The altercation could have turned from him aggressively yelling at a woman to pulling out his gun and shooting her in seconds.””

                But it didn’t. So your hypothetical is meaningless. He didn’t pull a weapon until he was physically assaulted. That is the reality.

                “” I might not react peacefully.””

                And you might be on the wrong end of a gun.

                I do think that if you park unlawfully in a handicap spot, someone has the right to say something to you about it. That doesn’t mean you can get abusive about it. If so the husband has a right to get involved. But no physical contact is necessary. Once you cross that line, people can defend themselves.

                Bottom line, the husband started a physical altercation.

                1. So you know that the husband didn’t feel his wife was in physical danger?

                  In Florida, simple assault (also referred to as misdemeanor assault) is an intentional and unlawful threat made by one person towards another in order to create a reasonable fear that violence or harm is about to occur.

                  Can you say that the man did not assault the woman?

                  1. “”Can you say that the man did not assault the woman?””

                    I would agree. It might have been ok for her to pull a weapon and shoot him under FL law.

                    I’m not a fan of using a weapon for anything other than protection from serious bodily harm and/or death.

                  2. I don’t know if the husband thought anything.

                    I DO know that it was the husband that laid his hands on someone else–someone who was ACTUALLY in fear for their life because they’d been struck.

                    What the husband ‘felt’ is irrelevant. Because HE chose to make it physical.

                    1. The other man was allegedly threatening his wife, a crime of simple assault in Florida. By Stand Your Ground, if he felt his wife was threatened, he had the right to use physical force to protect her. How did he know the guy wasn’t going to pull out his gun and shoot her? Stand your ground says that his use of force to protect his wife is legal.

                      Stand your ground leads to escalation of violence and unnecessary violence. It leads to situations where both sides of a fight have legal grounds to use deadly violence, and also gives motivation to kill so the victim does not have the opportunity to provide a second story (less applicable in this case, as there were witnesses and video).

  23. The Russians didn’t do it to “us”. They attacked Democrats and helped Republicans.

    1. LOLZ!

      1. If it weren’t for the Russians, no one would have thought Hillary Clinton held white, blue collar “deplorables” in rust belt swing states in contempt?

        If it weren’t for the Russians, we wouldn’t have thought Hillary Clinton was a crook?

        “In all, governments and corporations involved in the arms deals approved by Clinton’s State Department have delivered between $54 million and $141 million to the Clinton Foundation as well as hundreds of thousands of dollars in payments to the Clinton family, according to foundation and State Department records.”

        —-Mother Jones

        May 28, 2015

        http://www.motherjones.com/pol…..rms-deals/

        The first rule of Progressive Club is that the people want what we want.

        The second rule of Progressive Club is that when the people do not want what we want, see the first rule of progressive club.

        That the people don’t want what we want is unpossible.

        1. “”If it weren’t for the Russians, we wouldn’t have thought Hillary Clinton was a crook?””

          I’m from Arkansas. I knew that back in the 80s.

    2. Oh keep quiet with that rubbish.

    3. Give it up. Nobody believes your bullcrap “Steele Dossier”.

      1. Except for a few FISA judges.

        1. Well those dickheads obviously will rubber stamp damn near anything the scum in the Deep State drop in front of them.

          It’s one of many reason why the FISA Court should be disbanded, and probably should never have been created in the first place.

          1. Probably. But we’ve heard they are more responsible than that. But here we are.

            I was against it from day one.

            1. Republicans in Congress passed and Trump signed a bill to extend and expand FISA warrants. They want it to only apply to those they don’t like, and not against themselves.

              It’s not FISA they have a problem with, it’s any scrutiny.

            2. Republicans in Congress passed and Trump signed a bill to extend and expand FISA warrants. They want it to only apply to those they don’t like, and not against themselves.

              It’s not FISA they have a problem with, it’s any scrutiny.

  24. Gee what a surprise. None of our stalwart closed border defenders bothered to comment on the 463 kids who were effectively *permanently* separated from their parents. I wonder why.

    1. Who cares. Deport them separately-together-in groups whatever. Get them the fuck out of the USA.

      Chemjeff, you can sponsor as many illegal children as you are outraged about. Let us know how many you have ‘saved’.

  25. “”who were effectively *permanently* separated from their parents””

    It is permanent, or it is not. The use of “effectively” is silly.

    In reality we cannot determine if such separation will lead to them never seeing each other again. You have zero ability to make that claim at this point. Doesn’t matter if you put effectively in front of it or not.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.