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NY Times has 3 questions for Brett Kavanaugh. I’ll answer for him.

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NY Times has 3 questions for Brett Kavanaugh Ill answer for him

Nicholas Kristof from the NY Times has three questions for Judge Kavanaugh. It’s not the type of article I would normally read and I’m shocked it’s not behind a paywall as most NY Times links I try to read usually are, but it was listed at the top of Google News for me so I figured it might have substance.

It did, but only enough to deserve a response. Since it’s highly unlikely Judge Kavanaugh will answer the questions in an article that he probably won’t read, I’ll offer answers of my own. I’m not speaking for Kavanaugh. I’m not a Republican, though I do consider myself conservative. Mr. Kristof likely won’t read these answers, but just as his article was intended for the NY Times audience even if it was directed at Judge Kavanaugh, so too are my answers directed at our readership.

For full disclosure, I support Judge Kavanaugh’s confirmation for political reasons. Most Democrats who oppose his nomination do so for political reasons as well, though many will rewrite their personal histories and claim the sexual abuse allegations made them change their minds. However, most were like Senator Chuck Schumer and opposed his nomination within minutes of President Trump announcing it. Many opposed any nominee by Trump even before he announced.

Here’s the article by Kristof first in case you want to read it:

Three Questions for Judge Kavanaugh

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/03/opinion/kavanaugh-supreme-court-lies-integrity.htmlJudge Kavanaugh, I don’t know what happened in 1982. But I’m deeply troubled by what I perceive as your lack of integrity last week. You told the Senate Judiciary Committee under oath that your “have you boofed” yearbook question referred to farting, that “devil’s triangle” was a drinking game, that a “Renate alumnius” was simply a friend of Renate with no sexual insinuations, that the drinking age was 18.

Now, here are my answers:

1. Isn’t an itsy-bitsy lie still a lie?

Yes. Any intentional untruth spoken under oath is still a lie. There are, however, degrees of importance that sensible people consider when attempting to discredit someone or prepare them to be charged with perjury.

That’s really what Kristof’s question is about. At the very least, he hopes Judge Kavanaugh can be discredited by his lies, but that’s the consolation prize. What he and many Democrats really want is a perjury charge and investigation. If it’s done soon, it can derail the confirmation. If it’s done after the midterm elections (and if Democrats can win a majority in the House), then they can launch an impeachment. It wouldn’t make it through the Senate even with the most Democrat-friendly math, but getting him on record as going through an impeachment proceeding will damage President Trump and Republicans in 2020.

I’m not a fan of whataboutisms, so I’m not going to point the finger at Christine Blasey Ford’s “inconsistencies” that could be construed as outright lies. What I’ll do instead is argue that none of the points Kristof made have a chance of standing up to a criminal perjury litmus test.

I recently watched a video my friends and I made in the late 80s. I’m not as old as Judge Kavanaugh but I had a hard time recalling the circumstances surrounding the video. In fact, I had to Facebook Message one of my old friends to find out what I was talking about at one point in the video. He reminded me of the context and it all came back to me.

I’m not suggesting Judge Kavanaugh did not knowingly lie about the meanings of “boofing” or “Devil’s Triangle.” I personally think he probably did, but here’s the thing. These were personal questions that did not hold material value to the intent of the hearing. Perjury requires intent and relevance. Intent would be impossible to prove because the terms in question were used over three decades ago. As for being relevant, that’s a stretch few prosecutors would be willing to pursue.

2. Do you have empathy for those who aren’t so blessed as yourself?

Of the three questions, this is the one I wish I could avoid. It’s not that it’s a hard one to answer. It’s that Kristof’s insinuations and his attempt to make us draw a valid conclusion from them are manipulative.

It starts off by saying this:

An air of entitlement hangs over both your testimony and the sexual assaults, if they happened as alleged, and it leaves many of us with misgivings even as we acknowledge that you are a smart, hardworking and distinguished public servant.

“…if they happened as alleged…”

This is the biggest problem with the question and associated explanation for it. What Kristof insinuates is that the sexual assaults happened and Judge Kavanaugh is not showing proper empathy towards his victims. This is silly on its surface and dangerous when you dig deeper.

It’s silly because it’s saying Judge Kavanaugh should have empathy for his victims instead of having an air of entitlement. For him to have empathy, we have to assume that he’s guilty of the accusations, which the author clearly believes. He is begging the question, a shameful debate tactic that assumes his audience either already agrees or will fall into his trap.

What Kristof says with this question is that Judge Kavanaugh committed the sexual assaults and we should be worried about him as a Supreme Court Justice because he doesn’t show empathy towards his victims. Seriously?

If he didn’t commit the sexual assaults, we shouldn’t expect him to have empathy towards people who have harmed his family and tarnished his name for the sake of political posturing.

Kristof’s question would be insanely stupid in any context other than this one. The NY Times assumes guilt and wants everyone else to as well. Therefore, begging the question is technically brilliant because it takes the sheep and soon-to-be sheep and paints them into a corner where they must either stipulate the accusations as factual or defend a lack of empathy where none should exist.

3. What should we make of your rage and partisanship?

With this final question, Kristof brings up a valid point. As Matt Damon said while playing Judge Kavanaugh on SNL this weekend, he started at an 11 and took it up to 15.

Either someone got in his ear after his milquetoast Fox News interview the previous week or he decided it on his own, but at some point between the interview and the hearing he chose to be indignant towards the accusations, angry at the failed process, and preemptively combative towards Democrats. If I were guessing, I’d say he got a private call from the President on how to “punch back harder” as he is wont to do.

Judge Kavanaugh took it too far and came across poorly to those who didn’t already fully support him. That’s the extent of the validity of Kristof’s third question.

From there, he misses the mark once again, perhaps on purpose. The judge has the right to an emotional response during his testimony. Democrats have acted like obstructionists and have been treating him unfairly since well before the accusations were made. They peppered him with more written questions than all other Supreme Court Justice nominees combined. Many declared they would oppose him before he stepped foot on Capitol Hill.

This has been a partisan trap from the start. To say that Judge Kavanaugh is being overly partisan for speaking the truth about the party that opposes him is disingenuous. Yes, he invoked “revenge for Clinton” in a way that can be called conspiratorial and partisan. It could also be called quite obviously true.

The final portion of Kristoff’s article attaches Judge Kavanaugh to the Republicans defending him, in particular President Trump. Nobody ever accused Kristof of lacking intelligence or being a bad writer, which is why I must give him kudos for this tactic. To achieve his goal of discrediting Kavanaugh and preparing his readership for whatever the next play against Kavanaugh might be, he lays out this attachment to place anything negative from the Republican Party squarely on the judge’s shoulders. The sins of all become the sins of one.

When all is said and done, article’s like Kristof’s want the ire to be on President Trump. Judge Kavanaugh is his current newsworthy proxy, so attacking him is as important to the left as attacking the President himself.

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Guardian headline omitting ‘terrorists’ sparks outrage in Israel

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Guardian headline omitting terrorists sparks outrage in Israel

Website of Britain’s left-wing Guardian paper says “Israelis and Palestinians killed in West Bank violence” without stating that the Palestinians were terrorist gunmen who deliberately targeted Israelis • Israel is fighting back against biased coverage.

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What does America need in 2019 and beyond?

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What does America need in 2019 and beyond

Below is a transcript of the video.

When anyone is asked the question, “What does America need,” most Americans would answer in the negative. Democrats might say we need to get rid of Donald Trump. Republicans might say we need to get rid of illegal immigrants. Atheists might say we need to stop allowing the Christian worldview to dominate our traditions as a nation. Christians might say we need to get rid of Planned Parenthood.

Today’s America has fewer people acting in support of anything. Instead, their actions are based on opposition to something or someone. It’s as if we’ve lost hope in the good in America and have instead focused on getting rid of the bad. Many would say there’s really no difference between supporting a cause and opposing the counter-cause, but I beg to differ. Supporting a cause is driven by hope. Opposing the counter-cause is driven by anger.

This disillusionment that has permeated across American society is why NOQ Report has been formed. Above all else, Americans need to be given clarity about what’s happening in our world and how we can truly address these issues through promotion of good ideas instead of simply opposing bad ones. It may sound like a delusion of grandeur to think one news outlet with a website and a newly-formed YouTube channel can tackle such a need, but part of the problem in American is that too few are breaking away from the angst-driven news cycle in a meaningful way. There seems to be two schools of thought: people either let themselves get immersed in the mainstream media’s perverse news cycle or they willfully ignore it. We need more Americans to see the problems clearly by going outside of the boundaries that corporations and Washington DC want to impose.

Last year, that small group of journalists got together to start what we thought would be just another conservative news site. Our focus was going to be on the News, Opinions, and Quotes that act as commentaries on American life as it is now and how it can all be made better. Thus, we took the acronym of our primary focus points and turned them into the name of our website, NOQ Report.

Unfortunately, I was sidetracked until very recently. Real life happens. I was in the middle of helping to form the Federalist Party while caring for our newborn son who had two open-heart surgeries last year. Needless to say, I was busy and so were those who shared my vision. The remnant that remained ran the site for the first half of 2018 until life settled down enough for me to get back involved.

Despite the setbacks, the site has been thriving. Traffic has tripled in the last two months. We’re now prominently placed in Google News, giving us a voice to counter the anti-American whims of mainstream media on their own turf. With our notoriety emerging, it’s prudent to set a clear direction so we do not get trapped into the same cycle that has doomed other pro-American news outlets. Instead of pointing out their foibles, I’ll tell you all the problems in America that we intend to address.

To answer the question of what America needs now and going forward, we need to know the threats that America faces. These threats can be broken down into three categories:

Collectivism

As a mindset, collectivism may be the biggest hurdle to overcome. It’s spreading in the form of increased popularity of socialism, calls by citizens and politicians alike to curtail our Natural Rights as humans and our Constitutional rights as Americans, and the cognitive dissonance of supporting a globalist agenda.

It doesn’t matter how many scientific studies and social experiments confirm that individualism is by far the best path to help the collective. The liberty grabbers invariably want to impose their ideas on the people. They prefer taxation over philanthropy. They believe in government-run solutions over private market solutions. Their quest to help everyone hurts everyone instead.

The saddest part is that collectivism is very clearly designed to empower the elite by bringing everyone else down to a similar status of peasantry. Collectivist leaders preach about the suffering of the poor from one of their glorious mansions while collecting more in interest than most hard-working Americans make in wages. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against the rich. I’m against those who use their status to promote themselves while claiming to fight for the common man. It’s the greatest hypocrisy in American society today.

But it isn’t just the rich and powerful. Even the poor activists fighting for better lives are easily caught up in a notion of economic equality being superior to opportunity equality.

Our rights as individuals are bestowed by a higher power and protected by the Constitution. As a nation, we need to defend the rights of the individual if we’re ever to have a society that can end poverty.

Propaganda and Censorship

The only reason the narrative of collectivism is allowed to flourish is because mainstream media promotes it. The people are stirred to a frenzy by the journalistic puppets of collectivist groupthink, often referred to as the leftist or progressive movements. It is wrongly associated with liberalism, or more accurately, the true nature of classical liberalism that embraces individualism. Even in the shifted definition of the term “liberalism” can we see the machinations of media propaganda at work.

It isn’t just propaganda, though. American media has turned to censorship as another tool to confuse the masses. This comes in the form of voices silenced on social media platforms. It’s embodied by a corporate media mentality that forbids discussions about truthful ideas. There are no longer mainstream debates about evolution, climate change, or conspiracies. The voices that want to discuss the truth are quashed. We hear of “settled science” and “heavily debunked” claims about everything from 9/11 to George Soros to the federal reserve.

Sadly, it isn’t just the debunking that happens with such topics that embodies the problem. Wacky conspiracy theorists and extremist groups have helped make any discussion on forbidden topics unwelcome. One doesn’t have to believe that 9/11 was an inside job to ask rational questions about certain questionable components of the terrorist attack, but any discussion of 9/11 is relegated to the “wacky truther” garbage heap. Since white supremacists have spread vile messages about George Soros, any mention of him by public figures is classified as “regurgitating white supremacist antisemitic messaging” even if someone says something truthful about the world’s most prolific globalist. As for the federal reserve, it’s a topic that few are willing to honestly debate.

We will not promote crazy conspiracy theories, but we will not ignore truths just because they’ve been lumped in with flat-earthers and notions that Paul McCartney died in 1966. Not all conspiracy theories are crazy.

Between mainstream media promoting collectivism and corporate media like Google and social media censoring discourse, it’s no wonder Americans are starting to give up on hope for the future.

False Religions

There are many religions that do not get classified as such. Climate change, for example, has been revved up with a zealotry at the level of a bloodless Spanish Inquisition. Any scientist who asks questions about inconsistent data in climate models is instantly labeled “climate change denier” who must be purged from the Church of Science forever. Journalists have been fired. Politicians have been ousted. It is impossible for a Democrat who is a skeptic to ever win office in America.

I’m not suggesting that climate change isn’t real. I’m simply pointing out that faith in certain types of climate predictive models combined with the radical devotion to environmental advocacy has turned many Americans into disciples of nature that acts as their religion.

To us, the Judeo-Christian Biblical worldview is not only the most beneficial to society, but also the most realistic explanation of our existence. We will not be swayed by secular adherence to political correctness nor will we be bullied into quashing our views.

By no means would we advocate for a theocratic perspective or one that does not tolerate other religions. We believe the best we way to maintain freedoms for us to practice our Judeo-Christian faith is to all faiths, whether Muslim, Hindu, atheist, or anything else to be free in America. The separation of church and state must be maintained to protect the church, not the state.

But even within the Christian faith lies many false teachings. It is naive to believe that churches are immune to the powers and principalities bound by their oath to subvert the Lord’s Will. Many have used the promise of salvation to line their own pockets. Some have created blasphemous false representations of the Judeo-Christian faith to lead a willing flock down the wrong path. If anything, these abominable beliefs are more dangerous than other religions.

Finally

What does America need in 2019 and beyond? It needs more debates, more perspectives, and more voices to replace the old, tired representatives of politics, culture, and religion. I am very hopeful that NOQ Report can fill a void that most Americans don’t even realize exists. There may be no shortage of sounds in the cacophony that overloads our daily media consumption. But there’s definitely a shortage of cohesive thought that goes beyond the clickbait and the false narratives that drive media. What America needs, and what NOQ Report hopes to deliver, is much needed clarity.

I’m JD Rucker. Thank you for listening.

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The Weekly Standard’s demise is a bad omen for all, even if you disagreed with them

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The Weekly Standards demise is a bad omen for all even if you disagreed with them

After 23 years, the Weekly Standard is dead. It’s funny how things work out sometimes. We’ve been strongly considering adding a new element to the NOQ Report, whether that be a podcast or video or whatever. Our plans were to explore it fully with the new year but something about the Weekly Standard story awakened a sense of urgency in me yesterday. Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t agree with much of what was posted and printed by the magazine. Many of their writers were the epitome of the neoconservative movement that’s torn through the Republican Party for the past three decades, but I respected their dedication to their causes and the professionalism they displayed in their content.

Many will point to the Weekly Standard’s general opposition to the Trump presidency as the reason they’re folding. It started back in the early days of the 2016 primary season when there was still a good chance Ted Cruz could beat him. Most of them didn’t like Cruz, either, but with Jeb Bush failing early they had few viable options. So, many will say Trump, or more accurately their opposition to him, is what killed them in the end. This may be true, who knows, though traffic numbers indicate they were doing just fine online. Apparently, their subscriptions and advertising either dried up or couldn’t sustain costs; frankly I haven’t taken the time to look into the cause of their demise. The fact that they’re dying is enough to warrant a response.

In our world of “fake news” permeating across every platform, every medium, it’s a concern when anyone falls off, especially after seeing so much success. This isn’t a two-year-old blog or a local radio show getting axed. This is a news outlet that at its peak was one of the most well-respected right-leaning news and opinion providers out there. For it to fall as it has is a warning to all in the media. There’s no such thing as too big to fail. I’m not just talking about the outlets that were similar in size to the Weekly Standard. I mean the NY Times, Fox News, the Washington Post, CNN. Nobody is beyond reproach in an ever-changing media environment that is now driven in part by the critiques of public figures and the whims of a fickle yet powerful audience on social media.

It’s become popular to say in recent years that “words matter.” It’s true. They definitely do matter and in today’s world, they’re becoming more and more powerful. The President can post a Tweet about China and stocks may rise or fall by hundreds of points based on 280-characters. An average citizen can say something on a local news interview that goes viral and starts a trend until their fame-filled 15-minutes fizzles out. Look, everyone has a voice today if they’re willing to use it and traditional media is becoming obsolete. This isn’t news to anyone. The thing that keeps the bigger players in media afloat is their ability to adapt, which means if someone as big as the Wall Street Journal fails to adapt quickly enough or adapts in the wrong way, even they could be gone soon.

Whether it was the Weekly Standard’s criticism of Trump or a failure to adapt properly or simply poor use of their funds that caused their downfall is for others to debate. I’m simply suggesting that some fall, some rise, and that’s a concern in an industry that relies on stability to keep the bills paid.

Admittedly, we haven’t been paying our bills very well. The funding I put into NOQ Report is drying up, which is what prompted consideration of a podcast or video channel in the first place. But we’re small enough to experiment. As long as we’re producing great content that the audience likes, we’ll continue to grow. Our viewership has tripled in just over two months and shows no signs of slowing.We just launched our Patreon page to coincide with the launch of our new YouTube channel. Now’s the time to get funds rolling in so we don’t suffer the same fate as the Weekly Standard.

But this story isn’t about us. My concern has nothing to do with their ideology. I don’t have to be a devoted neocon to recognize their failure is bad for America. It’s the loss of important voices, which means less discourse. Less discourse means an unhealthy polarization of thoughts. Most people fear deadlock in Washington DC. I don’t. In fact, the slow, methodical way DC works is by design from the founding fathers. But I do fear deadlock when it comes to thought. I enjoy conversations and I’m made stronger by having them, even with those who are ideologically opposed to me.

I could debate the writers at Vox or Slate or Buzzfeed until I’m oozing gray matter from my nose, but I’d never want them to stop expressing their opinions. I wouldn’t want their voices shut down. We’re stronger when more voices are debating issues. Every time a publication like the Weekly Standard or Gawker or whoever falls apart, there are voices silenced. This isn’t a good thing.

America needs conversations. We need debates. I may not have liked what I considered to be pseudo-conservatism espoused by some of the writers, but I’m very concerned that they couldn’t weather the storm. Goodbye, Weekly Standard.

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