What is Christian Nationalism? An Interesting CNN Segment Delved Into It

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An interesting segment on CNN’s Reliable Sources show (07/31/22) delved into the new hot political topic, and that is, Christian Nationalism. So what is Christian Nationalism? Host Brian Stelter brought in Katherine Stewart, who has studied this topic for years, to shed some light on the issue. Stewart is the author of the book “The Power Worshippers–Inside The Dangerous Rise Of Religious Nationalism”.

This intro by host Brian Stelter is important for establishing the context for the ensuing debate:“Roughly 70% of Americans identify as Christian, and this segment is not about most of them. This segment is about the rise of a White Christian Nationalist movement in the U.S. It’s emerging in the news more and more, you are probably hearing the term Christian Nationalism more and more. Here is one expert’s definition:’Christian Nationalism is the belief that the American nation is defined by Christianity, and that the government should take active steps to keep it that way.’ Many observers feel that would threaten our diverse, healthy democracy in the U.S. We are seeing some Republicans in the U.S. embrace the term Christian Nationalism, for example [Reps] Marjorie Taylor Greene…Lauren Boebert…”

Here’s how Katherine Stewart defined Christian Nationalism (video at ):“Christian Nationalism is basically the idea that America was founded as a so-called Christian nation, our law should be based on the Bible, and supposedly right-thinking believers need to reclaim America’s past.”

Stewart said this is dangerous because “it’s a radically anti-democratic ideology. It rejects the principles of pluralism and equality, that represent the best of the American promise. The movement, it’s not just an ideology, it’s also an organized quest for political power.. it’s a political movement. This movement has built up…a sort of a dense organizational infrastructure over decades, that includes right wing policy groups, legal advocacy groups, networking initiatives, that get the leadership on the same page…[including] Supreme Court Justices.”

Stewart went on to expound on her argument re the U.S. Supreme Court saying, all the six conservative justices on the high court are either current or former members of the Federalist Society, which she says “is an organization that plays an outsized role in shaping our courts.” Just so you know, the Federalist Society is part of the “dense organizational infrastructure” Stewart alluded to earlier.

Stewart said Trump’s presidency was key to the Christian Nationalist movement because he “threw open the doors to leaders of this movement. It’s a leadership-driven movement, it’s not defined by the attitudes of the rank and file. Those attitudes are actually shaped by the leadership of the movement. He [Trump] offered them unprecedented political access, offered them of course the justices they wanted. This is a movement that represents the minority of our country. Most American Christians reject the politics of conquest and division this movement represents.”

There’s no other way to interpret Katherine Stewart’s remarks on CNN’s Reliable Sources other than(I’ll be happy to stand corrected of course), power hungry conservatives have schemed for decades on how to use Chritianity to achieve political power, and they finally got their opening with the Trump presidency. Trump elevated the leaders of this movement, and what we’re witnessing today with Reps Marjorie Taylor Greene, Lauren Boebert and others, are simply efforts to make Christian Nationalism a mainstream movement in America. Remember, as Katen Stewart correctly pointed out, a majority of Christians don’t agree with this effort to essentially hijack Christianity for political gain.

The CNN segment singled out Reps Marjorie Taylor Greene(R-GA) and Lauren Boebert(R-CO) as illustrations of this budding Christian Nationalist movement, but if anyone out there is looking for the classic example to date, it is, in my humble opinion, none other than former Arkansas Governor and presidential candidate Mike Huckabee, a former Pastor, who has now fully embraced Trumpism. Mike Huckabee not only got his daughter Sarah to work in Trump’s White House, but also made sure she secured Trump’s endorsement for her run for Arkansas Governor, a job she is largely expected to bag.

Huckabee has also recently authored “christian” books themed around the Trump presidency. If Mike Huckabee, and his daughter Sarah for that matter, are not the classic examples of the abuse-Christianity-for-political-power-movement, I don’t know who is.

An important piece of advice Karen Stewart gave to the mainstream media when covering this Christian Nationalism movement, is to never forget that it is a leadership-driven movement. In other words, don’t focus too much on what the rank and file go out there and do in furtherance of the movement(often viral videos on social media attacking gays, pro-choice activists, etc), but rather, on the leaders of the movement, who indoctrinate them into doing this stuff. Hmm, very interesting.

Bottom line folks, many Christians, including Yours Truly, regarded former President George W. Bush and his wife Laura (Texas pride–deal with it), as very good representations of a Christian family–despite whatever differences one might have had with their political beliefs. Interestingly, Trump, the leader of the “christian” nationalist movement, has never humbled himself to say anything good about the God-fearing Bushes. That, my friends, is all you need to know about this “christian” nationalist movement. It is anything, but Christian.

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Trump Accused Of “Sports Washing” Saudi Arabia’s Complicity In 9/11 Attacks

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Terry Strada, the National Chair of 9/11 Families United On MSNBC’s Alex Witt Reports(07/30/22)

MSNBC’s Liz McLaughlin reported on Alex Witt Reports show(07/30/22) that outraged families of the victims of the September 11th attacks(2001) are protesting the Saudi-backed LIV Golf Tournament currently being held at former President Trump’s Bedminster Golf Club in New Jersey. The protesters are essentially accusing former President Trump and the participating golfers, of “sports washing” Saudi Arabia’s role in the horrific 9/11 attacks, and their atrocious human rights record generally.

Asked by host Alex Witt, how the families were responding to the tournament, Liz McLaughlin responded (video at 0:31):“The families say they are disgusted, disappointed, that it feels like a gut punch after losing a loved one in that horrible act, to see a former President of the United States, who by the way, has the presidential seal emblazoned on golf carts, embroidered in golf towels at this tournament, which is less than 50 miles from ground zero, to have him take what they call blood money. LIV is bankrolled by Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund, investing an estimated 2 billion in LIV Golf so far, and this new pro golf circuit is set to try to dethrone the PGA, but it has come with a lot of controversy, and Trump is set to host another one of these, later in the year.”

Trump has defended his actions saying, “nobody has gotten to the bottom of 9/11 unfortunately, and they should have”–essentially arguing that it’s unfair/inaccurate to place the 9/11 blame on Saudi Arabia. He also added that all the proceeds from the golf tournament will be going to charity, so he was not profiting from it.

As Liz McLaughlin correctly pointed out however, even though the U.S. government has never singled out Saudi Arabia as the masterminds of the 9/11 attacks, it is a fact that 15 of the 19 hijackers were from the Kingdom, and the mastermind of the attacks, Osama bin Laden, was also born there. It has also been established that a lot of the funding for bin Laden’s Al Qaeda terrorist network, came from Saudi nationals. So any reasonable person would suspect that the Saudis were behind the 9/11 attacks. And even if one gives Saudi Arabia a pass over 9/11, it is impossible to ignore the Kingdom’s atrocious human rights record, which includes the brutal murder of American journalist Jamal Khashoggi. 

Terry Strada, the National Chair of 9/11 Families United, slammed Trump’s assertion that nobody has gotten to the bottom of the 9/11 attacks, telling host Alex Witt(3:02): “He sounds foolish saying anything like that. He met with the families. He met with me in the White House and we went there for the sole purpose of asking him to declassify FBI documents that were the investigative reports into this…so he sounds completely foolish when he says that nobody has looked into it. We asked him to look into it. It was his job as President to look into it. He failed us miserably back then.”

Bottom line folks, the pundits on Fox News recently made a big deal out of President Biden’s fist bump with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman(MBS) on his official visit to Saudi Arabia. It will be interesting to see if the same pundits also make a big deal out of former President Trump’s “sports washing” of Saudi’s atrocious human rights record and involvement in the 9/11 attacks. 

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DHS Inspector General Sat On Missing Secret Service Texts Info For A Year

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CNN’s Whitney Wild appeared on Outfront w/Erin Burnett show(07/29/22), where she dropped a bombshell, telling host Jim Sciutto(subbing for Erin), that embattled DHS Inspector General Joseph Cuffari did not find out about the missing Secret Service text messages in December 2021 as has been previously reported, but rather, in May 2021–seven months earlier. This means Inspector General Cuffari took a whole year before informing the January 6th Committee about the missing texts, a totally unacceptable position, which only heightens concerns about a possible cover up by DHS.

As host Sciutto correctly pointed out in his intro, it’s not only the missing Secret Service texts that are at issue here, but also, those from former Acting DHS Secretary Chad Wolf, and his top Deputy Ken Cuccinelli. Cuccinelli’s texts are crucial to the January 6th Committee’s investigation because former Acting Deputy Attorney General Richard Donoghue testified before the Committee, under oath, that Trump had tasked Cuccinelli with seizing all voting machines for the purposes of investigating his bogus election fraud claims. Cuccinelli’s communications with Trump’s White House officials, or Trump himself, would therefore be very valuable to the January 6th Committee, and the fact that they cannot be retrieved, should be cause for serious concern, even a possible criminal investigation.

CNN’s Whitney Wild(video at 1:50):“What they had said prior is that the [DHS] Inspector General was aware of the missing text messages as of December 2021, that was the information we had learned some days ago, when two key Democrats were calling for the Inspector General’s recusal. Now, sources tell CNN, that the Secret Service notified the office of the Inspector General that text messages were erased in May of 2021, seven months earlier than previously known. The Secret Service has explained that these text messages were lost in a previously scheduled data migration of agents cell phones. The Committee [January6th] and Cuffari [DHS-IG] are interested in these text messages because, as you point out, these are people who were right at the center of what was going on on January 6th, and depending on what the content is, could shed light on the Secret Service’s response that day, and further, what they witnessed, among others…The other big thing that we’re learning here about the timeline[is]…in July, a representative for the Inspector General’s office told the Department of Homeland Security, they were no longer seeking these text messages. That was in July of 2021, about a year before the Inspector General brought these hurdles to congressional oversight committees.”

There’s no other way to interpret Whitney Wild’s remarks other than(I’d be happy to stand  corrected of course), DHS Inspector General Cuffari is not being forthright about his investigation into the missing Secret Service texts. The shifting narratives as to when his office found out about the missing texts only raises suspicions from the general public, of a possible DHS cover up. Also, why did his office stop looking for the texts in July 2021? Wasn’t that the proper time for him, or the DHS Secretary for that matter, to notify the January 6th Committee of the problems they were having retrieving the texts? Very suspicious indeed.

Bottom line folks, the missing Secret Service texts scandal is just the latest in a long line of very troubling stories emanating from DHS, which all center around the same original sin–lack of proper congressional oversight, an issue Yours Truly has repeatedly screamed about, to your rolling eyes of course. Simply put, DHS has devolved into the corrupt federal behemoth we are witnessing today because at every turn since it’s inception, Congress and the corporate mainstream media, have looked the other way, when the public has raised credible concerns about abuses at/by the agency.

One only hopes that some of the outrage over the missing/deleted Secret Service texts will be aimed at complicit Congress and the corporate mainstream media. Simply put, DHS and other agencies tasked with our national security, will never change without proper/effective oversight. Plain and simple.

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Is Nikki Haley Running For President In 2024? Sure Looks Like A YES

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Nikki Haley on Fox News’ America Reports show(07/19/22)

Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, appeared on Fox News’ America Reports show (07/19/22) for an interview that raised a lot of eyebrows because it is the strongest indication yet, that she is indeed running for president in 2024. When asked by the Fox News hosts about a hypothetical match-up pitting her against Democrats Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, or even California Governor Gavin Newsome, the usually reserved Haley appeared uncharacteristically upbeat, telling the Fox News host, “bring it”–a clear indication that that she’s up for the challenge.

America Reports host (video at 3:22): “In terms of 2024…Kamala Harris, Gavin Newsome reaching out to some big money Wall Street donors about a potential run for 2024. When you take a look at Joe Biden’s polling numbers in that Sienna poll, he is well under water with every major demographic. Do you believe he’ll be the nominee in 2024?”

Nikki Haley: “I don’t know who they’re going to decide. I would love it if it is Biden, I’d love it if it is Kamala, I’d love it if it is Gavin Newsome, because we can beat them all day long, bring it. If that’s all they’ve got, bring it, because at the end of the day, we know what the American people want, and they want freedom, and they want to get government out of the way, and they want to make sure that their dollar is valued, and they want to make sure their kids have a better life, and that we have a strong America…that’s what they care about…”

She was then asked about her recent remarks at the Christians United For Israel(CUFI) event where she said this while talking about the Iran nuclear deal(video at 5:43): “No deal is better than a bad deal, and if this President[Biden]signs any sort of deal, I’ll make you a promise. The next President will shred it on her first day in office. Just saying, sometimes it takes a woman.” There was a long applause from the crowd, which obviously noted the “her first day in office” reference in her remarks. There’s absolutely no question that the politically savvy Haley intended for this to be a hint to the CUFI crowd and Americans generally, that she is strongly considering seeking the GOP presidential nomination in 2024.

Pressured by the Fox News hosts to elaborate further on her remarks at the CUFI event, Nikki Haley said(6:29): “Do I think the first female president, that it would be great if it was a strong conservative Republican? Of course I do. And sometimes does it take a woman? I mean we’ve tried men for a while, maybe a woman is what we need, but I don’t think I have to make that decision until the 1st of next year. Right now if we don’t win in 2022, there is no 2024.”

Asked whether she had the fire in the belly to mount a presidential run in 2024, she responded in the affirmative, saying: “I have the fire in the belly for America. I always have, and my parents reminded us every day how blessed we were to live in this country. All I’ve ever known to do is to fight for her, and so whether I run or not, I’m going to fight for this country until my last breath. It’s all I know to do.”

Bottom line folks, it has been widely speculated, including by Yours Truly, that Nikki Haley will mount a presidential run in 2024, so this should come as no surprise. It is however interesting because she took a few steps back on the issue in 2021 when it appeared that former President Trump had taken notice of her presidential ambitions and was displeased by them. Haley backtracked a little after that, saying she would not run for president if Trump was running. Has she now decided to run regardless of whether former President Trump runs? Hmm, sure seems like it, given her latest interview on Fox News’ America Reports show.

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Former AG Holder Re January 6th:”I Think We’re Going To See Indictments Here”

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Former AG Holder on MSNBC’s 11th Hour show (07/15/22)

Former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder(Obama) appeared on MSNBC’s 11th Hour w/Stephanie Ruhle(07/15/22) where he dropped a bombshell, telling host Ruhle that his vast experience as a public corruption prosecutor at DOJ, leaves him with a strong “feel” that we will see indictments for Trump’s political allies, and possibly Trump himself, over their efforts to thwart the peaceful transfer of power after Trump lost the 2020 election.

Holder said that as a career public corruption prosecutor, “you get a feel for these things after a while.” For the record, many political pundits and legal analysts have said the same thing on cable TV shows. Reasonable people will agree however, that it is quite different, and highly notable, when it comes from a career public corruption prosecutor like Holder, who recently headed the DOJ.

11th Hour host Stephanie Ruhle:“Merrick Garland, the Attorney General is under huge pressure to act, especially as these hearings unfold. You once had his job…should he act?”

Former AG Holder(video at 0:30):“I think to the extent that I could offer a little advice to the folks at the Justice Department, I would say that maybe you need to find a way in which you can appropriately reassure the American people that the Justice Department is on the case. You know, I was a prosecutor, started my career in the public integrity section, where we looked at, and prosecuted official corruption cases, political corruption cases, and you get a feel for these things after a while. And I got to tell you that on the basis of what I’ve heard, what I’ve read about this whole January 6th matter, I think we’re going to see indictments here. I don’t know if they are going to involve ultimately, the president, but I think those near to him have criminal liability, I think people outside the White House are going to be potentially indicted as well, and as I said, that feel that you get as a public corruption prosecutor makes me think that DOJ is going to ultimately return indictments in connection with the attempt to stop the transfer of power back in January.”

There’s no other way to interpret former AG Holder’s remarks on MSNBC’s 11th Hour other than, his vast experience as a public corruption prosecutor at DOJ gives him total confidence that indictments will be handed out to Trump’s political allies, and possibly Trump himself, for their efforts to thwart the peaceful transition of power following the 2020 election.

One only hopes that when former AG Holder says “people outside the White House”, he’s referring to the likes of Reps Marjorie Taylor Green, Matt Gaetz, or even Senators Lindsey Graham, Ted Cruz, Mike Lee, or in the case of Texas, AG Ken Paxton and other Texas super Trumpers. As Trump famously says, “We’ll see what happens.”

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Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro’s Interview On Fox News’ Tucker Carlson Show

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Brazil’s president Jair Bolsonaro on Fox News’ Tucker Carlson show (06/30/22)

Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro sat down with visiting Fox News host Tucker Carlson (06/30/22) for a wide ranging, and quite interesting interview, that covered issues such as his upcoming reelection fight, China’s expansion into Latin America, COVID, Christianity, the media, LGBTQ rights, and even a pitch by Tucker Carlson to Bolsonaro to allow Fox News in Brazil (yeah, he really did that, I promise).

President Bolsonaro and Hungary’s President Viktor Orban, are two notable world leaders who have struck a resonance with Trump’s wing of the Republican Party, which appears to be on a path towards Christian Nationalism. Yours Truly was therefore very interested to hear what President Bolsonaro had to say regarding a whole host of issues, and so should you.

The first topic of discussion was Bolsonaro’s very interesting, even miraculous rise to the presidency. Here’s how he described it (video at 5:22): “My election itself was almost a miracle. I had nothing going for me to be elected. I was just an isolated member of Congress, known as the lower segment of national Congress in Brazil. I conducted my campaign anchored on a Biblical passage John 3:33–‘Thou shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free.’ The media never gave me any visibility or space, much to the contrary, they attacked me all the time throughout the campaign. On 09/06/2018, on the eve of the election, I suffered an attempted assassination. Doctors said my survival was a miracle. The same is true for my election, and a very important factor which you may perhaps not be aware of, is the fact that Brazil is a country that upon taking office as the President, the incumbent President surrenders strategic positions in the cabinet and political parties, including the cabinet ministries, state banks, state companies. I did not do that.”

Bolsonaro then went on to attack his left wing opponent, Lula da Silva, using strikingly similar attacks you hear Republicans in the United States leveling against Democrats. Bolsonaro, for example insinuated that the left was planning to rig the upcoming elections, that they are using the pandemic to bring down his administration, and importantly, that if the left defeats him, they will never lose any election again after that–an argument strikingly similar to the one used by former President Trump during his 2020 reelection campaign, and after his loss to Joe Biden. Bolsonaro then went on to list a long laundry list of Republican-like attacks against Lula/the left wing; that they want unfettered abortions, they are soft on crime, that the left is anti-freedom, that the left wants to disarm the public (Brazil’s “second amendment”, I guess), that the left wants amnesty, that the left is manufacturing opinion polls which show him losing, so as to suppress his vote. Very interesting indeed.

Asked how he plans to win reelection despite what Tucker Carlson characterized as “the entire Brazilian media” against him, Bolsonaro responded (11:25): “Yes, there is the weight of the media against me. True, but social media has been doing a great job in Brazil. My social media channels are the most interactive in the world. I believe that today we have 40% of the population who has not yet expressed their voting intentions. Most of the voters we believe, will vote for me in the elections.”

Tucker then pulled the quintessential “shameless plug” and pitched Fox News to President Bolsonaro (11:49): “Why is there no Fox News in Brazil? CNN is here, you got over 50 million votes in the last elections, CNN’s a political player here, so is Globo, but there’s no TV channel for your voter?” Bolsonaro responded to Tucker Carlson’s pitch saying (12:00): “Well if I could launch an appeal for you, I can only say that you will be the most welcome in Brazil. You will be an excellent counterpart to the other vehicles or outlets. There are very few media outlets that are really unbiased in Brazil.” Hmm, again sounds awfully similar to what Republicans say in the U.S.

Asked how he felt about opposition to him, not only inside Brazil, but also from virtually all the neighboring countries, Bolsonaro gave this interesting answer (12:50): “Brazil is an economic powerhouse in South America. The 10 countries with which we have political, geopolitical, physical borders are not that economically strong as compared to Brazil. We are what you might describe as a cherry on the cake. If Brazil goes down or collapses, the whole of South America will go down, and be colored red(bloodshed) if you understand…”

The interview then moved to the topic that shot President Bolsonaro into the international spotlight, and that is, his opposition/refusal to take the COVID vaccine at a time when COVID cases were sky high in Brazil. This move endeared him to anti-vaxxer movements worldwide, but alienated him from Western governments who were at that time (height of the pandemic), desperately trying to get sufficient numbers of their populations vaccinated.

Asked why he refused to take the COVID vaccine, here’s how he responded (22:05 ): “As I said before, maybe I was the only head of state in the world who did not accept restrictive measures, or was against restrictive measures, and perhaps one of the few heads of state in the world who did not take the vaccine because I had already contracted the virus. The left was so worried about taking me out of office that they wanted me to take the vaccine, and I said well, ‘let me die, just let me die then and choose my policy.’ In South America we are the one country that best addressed the issue involving the need for vaccines, and we very properly and adequately equipped our hospitals with equipment and medications, and I believe we have pretty much turned the page there.”

To be clear, Bolsonaro’s argument was that he did not need a COVID vaccine because he had already contracted the virus. He therefore sought medications instead (including in Africa), that were being advertised at the time as cures for COVID. He says even though he was personally against the vaccines, he did make them readily available to the Brazilian public. He also said that part of his reluctance to take the vaccines, was the fine print from the vaccine manufacturers, which said they were not responsible for any side effects from their vaccines.

The interview then moved on to religion, and specifically, Christianity. Asked how he thought his opponent Lula and the left viewed Christianity, Bolsonaro responded (35:27): “The left wing, I mean the vast majority of them are atheists. They do not respect anything. They criticize priests and pastors and Lula himself has said that he will, if elected, he will place priests and pastors and the military in their rightful place, or in the right place in society. For instance, when the U.S. Supreme Court recently changed its understanding and ruling on abortion, the left wing in Brazil did not like that. We did like the new stance taken by the U.S. Supreme Court because we defend life from its very conception, but not so among the left wing people and Lula. Lula and the left wing, they often say that abortion is a matter of public health, and it is the woman that should decide. We believe that the life that has been given to a woman does not belong to the woman, and that is a stance espoused by our religion.” Hmm, interesting. Is this the TrumpGOP stance on abortion, too?

Asked about racism in Brazil, Bolsonaro, much like Republicans in the United States, blamed it on weaponized identity politics pushed by the left. He specifically said this about identity politics (38:17) :“It is a way to divide and conquer. Even before Lula took office in 2003, the left wing would already preach that, I mean, the division of people along identity lines such as Blacks and Whites, and employers and employees, and people from northeastern Brazil vis-a-vis southern Brazil. They have gained followers as a result of that approach, and the major divisionary split today is between employers and employees…and they say that, ‘hey you are not doing well today because of your employer’, and that divide approach or policy… has gained them at least one-fourth of the Brazil population. They have always been supported by at least one-fourth of the Brazilian population. My father-in-Law is…a Black man, and I am a blue-eyed White man. Racism is there in Brazil, yes, but not as it is often described. Most of our main football (soccer) players are, you know, people of African descent, no worries.”

The topic then shifted to gun control, where he was asked why he chose to make it easier for Brazilians to acquire firearms. He responded (39:25) :”I was unable to actually change the Brazilian law, but by means of a presidential decree, and also through ministerial orders, we interpreted the existing legislation as best as possible, and there has been a substantial increase in the number of people who legally own firearms in Brazil, and the consequences you see in the Brazilian media, is a drop in the number of people who are killed by firearms in Brazil. We understand that once people get armed, the crooks, the thieves will think twice before they break into other people’s property. If of course the number had gone up, I would be blamed, but just the opposite is going on today, and if reelected, if everything goes well, we will have a substantial support in Congress, and we’ll be able to pass laws on firearms, very much along the same lines as in the U.S.”

The topic then shifted to the Amazon rain forest, and specifically, whether it was being destroyed (deforestation) at an alarming rate causing global climate problems. Climate activists blame Bolsonaro’s administration for the deforestation. Here’s what Bolsonaro said when asked whether the Amazon was being destroyed at the high rates claimed by the news media (46:25): “No, that is not true. Two-thirds of the Brazilian territory are currently preserved, and remain pristine, just as they were back in the 1500s when this country was discovered by the Portuguese. The criminal acts that do happen, we will not deny that, are ultimately given too much visibility because there is a huge interest in making our sovereignty over the Amazonian region a relative fact, or perceived in a relative light. I met with President Putin and thanked him because on two occasions when this issue was discussed with other countries, he stated that the Amazon region belongs to the Brazilian people, not to anyone else. The Amazon region is as vast as eastern Europe. It’s huge, it’s wonderful, it’s just not possible to, you know, take care of every square meter in the Amazon region. There is illegal deforestation, yes, there are fire outbreaks, yes, but not at the rate that is announced out there. California itself always you know, catches fire, and it’s not given that much visibility, French Guyana likewise, I mean, you can’t possibly set a rain forest to fire, but there is illegal deforestation, yes, and we are working to tackle that.”

Asked about criticism regarding the Amazon, by celebrities-turned-climate activists, like Mark Ruffalo, Bolsonaro said (49:30):”These are people who do not understand anything about Brazil. I think these people have never been to the Amazon region, and I would actually invite them to come to the Amazon region, and overfly the region…They talk about the Amazon region because it’s trendy, it’s a fad. I mean, in Europe, if someone says that the Amazon region is not being devastated, they are politically doomed to fiasco. So, it’s politically good for them, you know, the criticism yields power, yields media visibility, yields votes, and that’s what celebrities feed on. They are not at all familiar with the Amazon region. They are not at all knowledgeable about the region, and the difficulty of investing in it. They just criticize it because it’s a fad.”

Asked whether he has enjoyed being President of Brazil, Bolsonaro said (50:30): “I must admit, you know, I first launched myself as a candidate, of course I intended to become the President, but I was all too aware of the challenges and the difficulties, and the experiences we have undergone, or I have undergone, I could never ever have imagined what it would look like, but I am comforted by the fact that the other candidate, the Workers Party candidate, Haddad, if he had won, Brazil would certainly be what Venezuela is today. So that’s a source of comfort to me, and that encourages me to say to the population that God is the one who has placed me where I am today…A message to the Americans–God, the homeland, family and freedom.”

The final topic of discussion was China, which Tucker Carlson said, was the primary reason for his visit to Brazil. Carlson contends that China is on a quest to colonize Africa and S. America–basically invest heavily in these regions and then take them over as colonies.

Tucker Carlson(58:50): “Given your natural resources, are you worried about the level of Chinese investment in Brazil.”

Bolsonaro:”I would very much like the Americans to also take part in more investments in Brazil. We of course have trade flows with China, and they have of course at least at first shown interest in ensuring their food security.”

Bottom line folks, I came out with the impression that President Bolsonaro is trying very hard to identify himself with the Republican Party in the United States, and specifically,, Trump’s wing of the party. His campaign message appears to be:“If you want Brazil to be God-fearing, rich, prosperous, and free, like the United States, vote for me. If Lula wins, Brazil will become a socialist nation and descend into bloodshed. I am the only one standing between Brazil and socialism/bloodshed, so vote wisely.” Will this campaign pitch be enough to earn Bolsonaro a reelection victory? Hmm, we’ll see what happens.

***Updated to include the fact that on 08/04/2022, Hungary’s President Viktor Orban addressed the CPAC Conference in Dallas, Texas. Orban and Bolsonaro appear to be playing from the same playbook re American conservatives–Christian Nationalism ***

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Senator Lindsey Graham Labels Liberal SCOTUS Critics “Constitutional Anarchists”

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Senator Lindsey Graham(R-SC), a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, appeared on Fox News Sunday(06/26/22) to discuss the bombshell Supreme Court decision striking down the landmark 1973 Roe v Wade decision which made abortion legal in the United States. Sen Graham lashed out at liberals angered by the high court’s decision, and using it as a basis to call for the high court’s reform/expansion, calling them “constitutional anarchists”.

He said the court’s decision in Roe was a result of 50 years of painstaking work at the ballot box by Republicans, urging Democrats to do the same if they want favorable outcomes from the high court–essentially admitting(whether he realized it, or not), that after 50 years, Republicans have successfully politicized the United States Supreme Court to their advantage.

Sen Graham said(video at 1:25):“This is a huge victory for the pro-life movement. President Trump deserves a lion share of credit here. He fought like a tiger to put three constitutional conservative judges on the court. He stood behind Kavanaugh, and all of us who’ve been working for the last 50 years to get this right, to have a constitutional reset, Friday was a glorious day…When Roe came down[1973], we didn’t burn down the Capitol as conservatives, we didn’t go to liberal justices’ homes and try to intimidate them. The radical left are constitutional anarchists. They are literally trying to change this country from top to bottom. They want to pack the court because they don’t like this decision. they want to abolish the electoral college so California and New York can pick the president in perpetuity…So these constitutional anarchists, here’s my advise to you. Quit trying to burn down America, and work like we did in the fields. Elect people who agree with you at the ballot box…This was worn through the ballot box by conservatives, and we’re not going to let liberals intimidate the rule of law system to take it away from us.”

Asked whether the Roe decision will become the biggest issue in this year’s midterms, Senator Graham disagreed, saying it will be inflation and high gas prices. He then quickly reverted to his constitutional anarchist theme saying(video at 4:42):“For all of you who’ve been working for 50 years to elect members of the House and the Senate and presidents that would put constitutional conservatives on the court, your day finally arrived. And to the left, the way you do this, is to do what we did. You take it to the ballot box, you don’t try to destroy America. These constitutional anarchists like AOC have to be dealt with, and there will be a backlash against this effort to intimidate our judges.”

It bears pointing out that Senator Graham has a history of, for lack of better words, freaking out, every time calls for court reform/expansion come up, so this should not surprise anybody. Evidently the global blowback following the Roe decision has renewed his fears, leading to his constitutional anarchist charge.

Bottom line folks, Sen Graham can cry all he wants about calls for Supreme Court reform by liberals. The fact of the matter is that public confidence in the Roberts Supreme Court is at an all-time low. That in itself, should be grounds for a serious debate into whether the high court is out of touch with the beliefs of a vast majority of Americans. Yours Truly also hopes that given what we witnessed on January 6th 2021, someone in the media, or TeamAOC, would ask Sen Graham exactly what he means when he says, “These constitutional anarchists like AOC have to be dealt with…”

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Former Assistant AG Jeffrey Clark Discusses FBI Raid On His Home On Tucker Carlson Show

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Former Assistant U.S. Attorney General Jeffrey Clark, who’s currently a Senior Fellow at the Center For Renewing America, appeared on Fox News’ Tucker Carlson show(06/23/22) to discuss the FBI’s predawn raid on his home, which presumably, is related to his role in the fake electors scheme that was meant to thwart the certification of President Biden’s electoral college win.

Clark did not directly address the fake elector scheme during his interview on Tucker Carlson show and instead, attacked the time and manner of the FBI raid, which he shockingly referred to as “Stasi-like”. Stasi is of course the term that was used to refer to Adolf Hitler’s ruthless Ministry of State Security. He also characterized the raid as part of a coordinated nationwide political attack on him and other backers of former President Trump.

Clark told host Tucker Carlson(video at 1:38):“Yeah, I think this is highly politicized and it’s also part, Tucker, if you didn’t know it, of a nationwide effort yesterday. There were multiple states where multiple people were roughly simultaneously raided for their electronic devices, and that obviously requires a high level of coordination, and look, with the hearing[January 6th Committee]that was pointed at me, and targeting me today, with the special audience member of Sean Penn–so you know this is Hollywood– the very next day, you know, it looks highly coincidental. I just don’t believe in coincidences.”

There’s no other way to interpret Clark’s rambling and rather incoherent response other than, he is framing this as some sort of made-for-television political attack against him(the Senn Penn reference). This displays a shocking level of tone-deafness on his part, given the volume of evidence adduced so far, regarding the fake elector scheme. Clark may not realize this, but many consider him very lucky to have gone this far without any criminal prosecution for his efforts to overturn the 2020 election. He is the last person who should be surprised about a search warrant being executed at their home, given the volume of evidence already out there regarding the fake elector scheme.

It also bears pointing out that at his testimony before the January 6th Committee, Clark responded to virtually every question by pleading the 5th(right against self-incrimination), which every reasonable person would agree, demonstrates at the very least, some consciousness of guilt on his part.

Interestingly, he never mentioned the fake elector scheme during his interview on the Tucker Carlson show. Most innocent people would use such venues to reiterate the fact that they did nothing wrong. Clark appeared only bothered by the fact that the FBI showed up at his house very early in the morning, before he could put on his favorite pants, and that they showed up with “electronic sniffing dogs”, which he claimed he has “never seen before, or heard of.”

Bottom line folks, reasonable people will agree that the January 6th Committee has provided enough evidence so far regarding Clark’s role in the fake elector scheme, to justify his criminal prosecution. As I stated earlier, Clark should consider himself lucky that he has not been criminally charged yet, and should be the last person surprised, or upset, by an FBI raid on his home.

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Senator Mike Lee Says He Reached Out To State Legislators Re 2020 Elections To Clarify Rumors, Not To Influence Them

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Senator Mike Lee(R-UT) appeared on Fox News Sunday(06/19/22) to discuss the floundering bipartisan gun control negotiations currently going on in the Senate in the wake of the horrific shooting at Robb Elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, which left 19 children and two of their teachers dead. The interview then turned to the January 6th investigation, and specifically, Senator Lee’s alleged involvement in efforts to overturn the 2020 election results. When host Shannon Bream asked Senator Lee about claims that he was involved in the scheme to create fake Trump electors in the states, Senator Lee gave a very interesting response. He said he reached out to legislators in various states only to clarify certain rumors about efforts to withdraw or reallocate electors, but denied ever trying to influence any of them to create fake electors for Trump.

The question now is whether the January 6th Committee will take Sen. Lee’s assertion as the truth, or dig deeper to find out whether he did indeed pressure state legislators on Trump’s behalf, conduct that constitutes a crime in most states.

Host Shannon Bream(video at 6:04):“Your own text messages have come up with respect to Mark Meadows. They’ve been highlighted. Here’s what the Salt Lake Tribune said about that…’New court filings raise questions about Sen. Mike Lee’s involvement in attempts to overturn the 2020 election.’ Your response?”

Senator Mike Lee:“Well, first of all,look, I knew how bad Joe Biden would be as President. I knew what a disaster he would be in the Oval Office, and there were some uncertainty in the wake of the election. As we approached the end of December, there were rumors that continued to circulate, suggesting that some states were going to be reallocating, withdrawing and reallocating their electoral votes. Because Congress has a role in that, and I as a Senator would be required to certify those, I wanted to find out. So I communicated with Mark Meadows to try to find out whether the rumors were true. I couldn’t get answers, so I reached out to state lawmakers in various states, not trying to influence anyone, simply trying to find out whether the rumors were true. The rumors weren’t true, no state had any intention of withdrawing it’s slate of electoral votes, that made it an easy decision on my part to vote to certify the results of the election.”

There’s no other way to interpret Senator Lee’s remarks on Fox News Sunday other than(I’ll be happy to stand corrected of course), he admits reaching out to state legislators in various states regarding electoral college votes, but that his outreach was only limited to his desire to clarify some rumors. He never influenced any of the state legislators to come up with a scheme to create fake electors for Trump.

Any reasonable person presented with Senator Lee’s explanation–that his outreach to state legislators was only limited to clarifying some electoral college rumors–will take issue with it, and at the very least, would be inclined to apply some “trust but verify” principle to it. Hopefully, this is exactly what the January 6th Committee will do with Senator Lee’s explanation.

Asked whether he would sit down and talk to the January 6th Committee if asked, Sen. Lee responded:“Oh sure…I’d always be willing to talk if they want to talk.”

Bottom line folks, efforts by Senator Mike Lee and his sidekick Senator Ted Cruz(R-TX) to overturn the 2020 election results, deserve further scrutiny by the mainstream media, now that the January 6th investigation is heating up. Hopefully the January 6th Committee will take Senator Lee up on his offer to sit down with them, because something tells me his explanation, that he reached out to legislators in various states only to clarify some rumors, will be debunked. The Committee should do the same for Senators Ted Cruz and Lindsey Graham(R-SC), who have similar charges leveled against them. Simply put, the public is hungry for suit-and-tie insurrectionists to also face the music for their efforts to overturn the 2020 election results.

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Fox News’ Brit Hume: Republicans Are Hoping Trump Will Be “Gone” After 1/6 Committee’s Findings

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Fox News Senior Political Analyst Brit Hume confirmed on Monday(06/13/22) what many have suspected all along, and that is, establishment Republicans are secretly hoping the January 6th Committee’s findings will expose so much about former President Trump’s conduct leading up to and including the day of the insurrection, that he will effectively be “gone” for 2024 presidential election purposes. Hume added that many GOP insiders are afraid to say so publicly for fear of Trump’s thuggish supporters, but the consensus was that a Trump presidential nomination in 2024 will cause the GOP to lose the White House again to Democrats. WHOA!!

Britt Hume: “If they[January 6th Committee]succeed either by damaging him or staining him such that he is either unable for legal or political reasons to run again, they might end up finding out that they’ve done the Republican Party a a great service because I think a great many Republicans think they can’t win with Trump at the head of the ticket again. They are afraid of his supporters, [they]don’t want to come out against him directly, but they would like him to go away. If the effect of this committee is to make his possible candidacy go away, I think a great many Republicans would privately be very glad.”

There’s no other way to interpret Brit Hume’s analysis on Fox News other than, establishment Republicans are secretly rooting for the January 6th Committee, hoping that Rep Liz Cheney & Co. will deliver the GOP’s ultimate wish–finally getting rid of Trump and his hold on the Republican Party. They desperately want him gone, but cannot say that publicly, for fear of his thuggish fans–a sad state of affairs indeed for a party that constantly brags about “manhood” and its associated traits.

Bottom line folks, it has been clear to any reasonable observer, that ever since the January 6th insurrection, many serious Republicans considered Trump dead for presidential election purposes. The only reason they haven’t said this publicly, is as Brit correctly pointed out–fear of Trump’s thuggish fans. There is no question that many of them, including his supposed mouthpieces at Fox News, are secretly hoping that the January 6th Committee will finally deliver a fatal blow to his political aspirations, keeping him “gone”. This of course opens up another nightmare scenario for Republicans–a breakaway MAGA third party, which will almost certainly lead to Dems retaining the White House in 2024. Trump in jail will prevent a breakaway MAGA party scenario. All in all, folks, brace yourselves for some very interesting political months leading up to 2024.

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