The Deep State Coup Against President Trump. Some say we're witnessing a "silent coup" in America, but it seems the unaccountable Deep State is loudly flaunting its power, almost to the point of exhibitionism. Will they get their man? Our fragile democracy hangs in the balance. Do elections matter anymore? Does America actually belong to Establishment Embeds in the Beltway -- or rather still to the American people? We observe the curious comfort displayed by Leftist commentators, such as Dana Bash and Peter Daou, in ceding control of America over to the "intel community." Is that what the Founders had in mind? Meanwhile, the emboldened Never Trump cohort attempts to rise from the grave, with David Brooks offering stale armchair Trumpian psychoanalysis and Bill Kristol hinting at his plans for "disposing of Trump." For old times' sake, Jeb Bush and John McCain join the chorus. Will they ever get their reputations back? Also, CNN's "Anderson Pooper" gets scatological, and Julie Pace of the Associated Press shares her wisdom on the "grueling pressures of foreign travel." Plus, notes on the unsurprising Harvard study of Media Bias and the late Roger Ailes' contributions to conservatism. With Listener Calls & Music via Gillian Welch, Dwight Yoakam and The Beatles.
His Name Was Seth Rich. As the unsolved July 2016 murder of DNC staffer Seth Rich edges into the mainstream media, we assemble the week's relevant commentary from Newt Gingrich, Sean Hannity, Fox News and Kim Dotcom. Did Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks, offer unsubtle indications that Seth Rich was one of his sources for the DNC's internal emails? Had the 27-year-old Seth Rich become disgruntled over the Democratic Party's mistreatment of his preferred candidate Bernie Sanders? We listen to an interview with the parents of Mr. Rich and we explore the potential implications herein. Too soon to say, but maybe it wasn't the Russians after all? Inside job? Meanwhile, callers weigh in with additional thoughts on James Comey, Robert Mueller, and President Trump's battle with the Deep State. With Music via Waylon Jennings, Lucy Dacus, Kenny Chesney and the Diamonds.
Why was James Comey hiding in the curtains of the White House? In spite of such skillful camouflage, President Trump spotted him: "Oh, and there's Jim!" Will the former FBI Director soon be coming out to try to take down Trump? We speculate on Comey's next moves, review the latest rounds of anonymous leaks, and puzzle over Robert Mueller's recent appointment as "special counsel" to investigate "Russian interference" in the 2016 elections. Speaking of Russia, we review the dark atmospherics of ongoing media propaganda, which offer expertly rendered hints of possible malfeasance -- but yet, even still, no tangible evidence. Might we be watching, in all this, a prolonged Film Noir without any actual Noir? Meanwhile, President Trump goes to Saudi Arabia, receives a warm welcome, and proceeds to challenge the Middle East on "Islamic extremism." Also, Anthony Weiner pleads guilty. Might go to jail. Plus, our vignettes on Bugs Bunny, the character in the curtains, and the undeniable "cool" of Conservative Counterculture. With Listener Calls & Music via the Sneaker Pimps, Social Distortion and Junior Brown.
The Blood Funnel of the Beltway. A study of the inhumanity of American Elites, who have prospered mightily at the expense of the American Rust Belt. Adding flourish, we observe how these Elites manage to vilify -- in good conscience -- the "irredeemables" that have been left behind. Working from the premises of J.D. Vance's new book Hillbilly Elegy, which documents the demise of America's White Working Class, we consider the plight and pathologies of the heartland, as partially engineered by our Beltway Globalists. Have displaced communities traded self-respect for unlimited supplies of Oxycontin? If so, how has all this happened? We correlate the wealthiest four counties in America -- all located right around Washington, D.C. -- as the chief cannulators of the economy. Political philosophers Adam Smith and David Ricardo once warned that "free trade" could lead to national ruin if and when elites were to lose allegiance to their own homelands. Are we now seeing this potential play out within Western Civilization? The bitter fruits of the Globalist Mindset, even as it struggles to retain power in the era of Trump? Meanwhile, from a pilgrimage to Dharmsala, Nancy Pelosi reports the Dalai Lama has "prayed for me that I would rid myself of my negative attitude." Might such an intervention help lessen the "destructive emotions" now running so rampant on the Left? With Listener Calls & Music via Cheap Trick, Billie Jo Spears, the Dream Academy and George Harrison.
On the Principles of "Decency" in American Politics. Might the burgeoning vulgarity of Leftist commentators & comedians be undermining their long-term credibility? Do the American People still harbor subconscious expectations for "good manners" in their media personages? Do we retain a sixth sense for cheap shots? Meanwhile, President Trump contemplates major revisions to the raucous "White House Press Briefing" format, and tells Time Magazine that he is presently "consumed by news." In response, we evaluate Abraham Lincoln's "cultivated indifference" to the hostile news media of his day, and we listen to Newt Gingrich advise Trump to "ignore the press corps" and focus on the broader "substance" of his agenda. Sound advice? Also, we consider former Defense Secretary Robert Gates' surprising praise for President Trump's "disruptive approach" to foreign policy. Plus, we review J.D. Vance's new book Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis which describes the collapse of the White Working Class in America. But we are left to wonder whether the articulate Mr. Vance is truly helping his own people. With Listener Calls & Music via Glen Campbell, The Sweet, Kenny Chesney, Paul McCartney and Dwight Yoakam.
The Deep State Battle Plan. Now that the voters are out of the picture for a while, the embedded D.C. Establishment is enjoying a kind of homefield advantage. We survey the latest Lies, Leaks & Fake News surrounding President Trump's firing of FBI Director James Comey. Are Democratic voters having a hard time adapting to the evolving hypocrisies of their leadership? We consider the background of Andrew McCabe, the new "Acting Director" of the FBI. A partisan leftist with deep ties to the Clinton Machine? Can we expect Democrats to leverage McCabe's presence to push for a "Special Prosecutor" on claims of Russian collusion? Meanwhile, we scrutinize the commentary of former NSA Director James Clapper, who misappropriates the Founders in his erratic efforts to prevent Swamp Drainage. And we ask: Could the outrage of the Deep State be covering for fears of future investigations pertaining to their "surveillance" of the Trump Campaign? Also, we lament the lack of "fighters" in the Republican Establishment and marvel at the "flood of leaks" emanating from the Inner Circle of the White House. Should Trump clean house? Plus, vignettes on CNN's "Ice Cream Gate" and notes on the new movie Guardians of the Galaxy, Volume Two. With Listener Calls & Music via the Beastie Boys, the Archies, the Rolling Stones and Jay & The Americans.
Theories of Elite Fracture. The New York Times offers coded messages to American Elites through its descriptions of the current chaos in Venezuela. If the "ruling clique" of Venezuela can hold together during its darkest hours, shouldn't the American Ruling Class be able to do the same? Plato claimed that a "united elite" could resist popular uprisings -- so should the anti-Trump "resistance" take heart? But we ask in return: Could the slow-building subtleties of President Trump's leadership ultimately provoke the much-needed Fracture of malfeasant American Elites? Going further, we consider the role of ongoing "surveillance" of American citizens in terms of Ruling Class consolidation of power. Senator Rand Paul wants to know if the Obama Administration was spying on his campaign. Will he get answers? Meanwhile, we examine the cold anger emanating from Late Night Comedians such as Stephen Colbert and Bill Maher. Too hateful to be funny? Also, we offer vignettes on media monopolies, Marvel Comics propaganda, the growing trend of cord-cutting and the unbelievably amazing Judy Woodruff. Plus, our notes on the "totemism" of sociologist Emile Durkheim and the uncertain fate of our hyper-differentiated Western Civilization. With Listener Calls & Music via Royksopp, Ylvis, R.E.M., the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Dwight Yoakam.
The ever-touchy mainstream media refuses to run President Trump's celebratory message from his first 100 Days in office. Just because Trump calls them "Fake News" outlets? Lara Trump says CNN, ABC, CBS and NBC are thus engaging in "an unprecedented act of censorship." And rightly so. Meanwhile, we review the latest unraveling of yet another fake "hate crime" which was used by the media to discredit Trump and his supporters. The typical tactics of our propagandists, offered without correction of course. Also, we consider the new Obamacare Replacement bill now successfully passed through the House. A good start? Newt Gingrich claims a "huge victory" for President Trump and Speaker Ryan, while Nancy Pelosi describes a nefarious "tattoo" on the forehead of Republicans that will forever "glow in the dark." Has government now become a permanent part of healthcare in America? Plus, callers react to the election in France, lamenting the loss of French "snobbery" and quoting the poetry of Paul Verlaine. Il pleure dans mon coeur. With Music from Gus Viseur, Courtney Barnett, Train and Oasis.
Ne Me Quitte Pas. We bid sad adieu to France, which has raised the white flag of surrender in today's big election. We sample the victory speech of Globalist Emmanuel Macron and the gracious concession speech of Nationalist Marine Le Pen. And so we ask: How has France managed to lose its formerly glowing cultural confidence? Was the 20th Century somehow too hard on France, leaving an incurable post-modern nihilism in its wake? Will the French Nationalists -- who've come on strong in recent years -- be able to mount a future comeback? We listen to Barack Obama's meddling endorsement of Macron, and also to Newt Gingrich's diagnosis of the French malaise. A mixed baguette. Would Hillary Clinton say 'misogynists' kept France from electing their first female president? Meanwhile, in America, the unemployment rate has reached a 10-year low with several key economic indicators turning upwards. It might seem President Trump deserves some of the credit herein -- but the leftist media claims former President Obama should own the good news. We explore the predictable partisan gamesmanship of CNN's Dana Bash. With Listener Calls & Music via Louane, Patricia Kaas, Jacques Brel, Autour de Lucie and Van Morrison.