They’re Not Going to Like Their New Rules


The Progressives believe that they can declare their cities and counties “sanctuaries” for illegal immigrants where local officials do not have to cooperate with the enforcement of federal immigration laws. The mostly Democrat politicians who run those jurisdictions presume they can nullify federal laws on their turf.

John Calhoun was unavailable for comment, but local officials in other jurisdictions were.

According to Reuters, the sheriffs in many jurisdictions (including some here in Maryland) are saying that they will refuse to enforce unconstitutional firearm laws being passed by state legislatures. Over sixty cities and counties in Illinois have declared themselves sanctuaries for gun owners should pending legislation pass. In Oregon, voters in eight counties approved Second Amendment Preservation Ordinances last November that allow sheriffs to determine which state gun laws to enforce. More such ballot measure are on the way in that state.

If the New Rule is that local officials can nullify federal laws, then other local officials should also be able to nullify state laws. If the Progressives can do it, then surely we Normals (I like Kurt Schlichter’s term for us) can as well. Alinsky’s Rule 4 states: Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules.

They’re not going to enjoy it.

Walking Away


The AP reports that the Trump/Kim summit in Hanoi has broken up early because of a failure to reach a deal.

Trump, in a news conference after the summit abruptly shut down early, blamed the breakdown on North Korea’s insistence that all punishing sanctions that the U.S. has imposed on Pyongyang be lifted without the country committing to eliminate its nuclear arsenal.

“Sometimes you have to walk,” Trump explained, adding that he had a proposed agreement that was “ready to be signed.”

“I’d much rather do it right than do it fast,” the president said. “We’re in position to do something very special.”

Part of the art of the deal is the ability to patiently get up from the table and walk away until the other side is able to give you what you need. Trump, like Reagan with Gorbachev in 1987, seems willing to use that negotiating option. I wish him luck.

The AP couldn’t resist inserting this into the middle of their story—

The breakdown denied Trump a much-needed victory amid growing domestic turmoil back home, including congressional testimony this week by his former personal lawyer Michael Cohen, who called Trump a “racist” and “conman” and claimed prior knowledge of foreign powers’ efforts to help Trump win in 2016.

If the imagined fallout for Cohen’s testimony was part of the calculus for either side in the negotiation, Trump’s apparent non-concern for it should work to his advantage by demonstrating a resolve not to let domestic U.S. issues adversely affect a nuclear deal.

The Collusion Wasn’t With The Russians


And it didn’t involve the Trump campaign. It’s now becoming clear that the Russian Collusion story is failing because there are no facts to support it. Indeed, it appears to have been based on nothing more than shoddy opposition research from the 2016 campaign by members of the press, politicians, and elite bureaucrats to effect a coup against an elected president. Now that the coup is failing, Julie Kelly offers some questions in a post at American Greatness

So, what now? Who will pay the price for unleashing this ordeal on the American public? Which lawmaker will be rebuked and censured for pretending to have evidence of malfeasance that never happened? Which former high level official will be charged for abuse of power?

What journalist will be fired and permanently jettisoned from the industry for intentionally misleading readers and viewers? What editor or media owner will be held accountable for publishing illegally leaked information that exacted real harm on innocent people? When will NeverTrumperers who accused more astute observers of this scheme of being “conspiracy theorists” going to apologize?

How will people harassed by the media and investigators restore their professional standing, squandered savings and mental wellbeing? How can the president regain the time in his term that has been lost to this craven insurgency?

These are only a handful of the questions now arising from the wreckage of the failed Trump-Russia collusion gambit; the answers might be just as infuriating as the questions themselves.

My exit question for now is: How do you shame someone with no sense of shame?

That’s Not a Bug, It’s a Feature


Joel Kotkin has a piece over at City Journal about the failure of the California high-speed rail project. Reality has finally set in, and the new governor is pulling the plug on the wasteful endeavor which has been emblematic of the state’s elite class’s mismanagement of their fellow citizens’ subjects’ lives.

Some greens and train enthusiasts, such as the deep-blue Los Angeles Times editorial board, have criticized Newsom’s move, and others remain adamant in their support of the plane-to-train trope. But California, which has embarked on its own Green New Deal of sorts, has seen these results:  high energy and housing costs, and the nation’s highest cost-adjusted poverty rate, and a society that increasingly resembles a feudal social order. Attempts to refashion global climate in one state reflects either a peculiarly Californian hubris or a surfeit of revolutionary zeal.

It was the early warning signs of the attempt by rich Progressives who were certain that they knew better to take over California and make it in their own image that led Mrs. Hoge and me to move out of the state in 1990. Being in the upper 5-% of the income spectrum was clearly going to be insufficient to allow for protection from the coming changes. Indeed, it made us prime targets of upper-middle-class “wealth” to be taxed. We joined the first cohort of economic refugees.

California is now becoming a feudal society with rich Progressives and Democrat politicians at the top, a growing class of serfs at the bottom, and a disappearing middle-class. That’s fine for the folks at the top. For now. But it can’t and won’t be stable, and that instability isn’t a bug. It’s a Real World feature resulting from the Laws of Thermodynamics. What can’t go on forever, won’t go on forever.