Thursday, May 30, 2019

Yes, President Trump was exonerated

It is amazing how the mainstream news media can distort the facts, even when the details are all publicly available. Such is the case with the Mueller statement to the press. Here is what I saw.

Mueller is a senile puppet. He just read a prepared statement, and did a lousy job of it. He did not have the appearance of someone who knew what he was doing, or who was proud of what he did, or even understood what he was saying. Considering that he prepared for two years, and this was his only public statement, it is hard to understand how he could do so poorly.

Maybe he was just pretending to be senile, because he wanted Democrats to think that he was incompetent to answer questions. He is obviously covering up something in his refusal to explain himself.

Russians did not interfere in the election. Mueller mentioned the supposed Russian interference a couple of times, but he was very careful to say that it was just a grand jury allegation, and we should regard the Russians as innocent of the charge. He seemed to be hinting that charging the Russians was just a political or diplomatic maneuver, and the charges will never be proved in court or anywhere else.

President Trump was exonerated. While the Mueller statement has plenty of innuendo that maybe someone should continue to investigate Trump, he denied that he had any quarrel with attorney general Barr's handling of the report. Barr wrote a letter saying that the report exonerates Trump, and most of the press claimed that Mueller disagreed with that letter. But Mueller now says that he "certainly did not question the attorney general's good faith".

What Mueller did not say. Mueller's most anti-Trump statement was "if we had had confidence that the president clearly did not commit a crime we would have said so." Okay, but it is also fair to infer that if they had confidence that the Russians clearly interfered with the election they would have said so. If they had confidence that the president clearly did anything improper they would have said so. And if it he were not a senile puppet in charge of a witch hunt, he would have said so.

Update: Alan Dershowitz writes:
Until today, I have defended Mueller against the accusations that he is a partisan. I did not believe that he personally favored either the Democrats or the Republicans, or had a point of view on whether President Trump should be impeached. But I have now changed my mind. By putting his thumb, indeed his elbow, on the scale of justice in favor of impeachment based on obstruction of justice, Mueller has revealed his partisan bias. He also has distorted the critical role of a prosecutor in our justice system.

Virtually everybody agrees that, in the normal case, a prosecutor should never go beyond publicly disclosing that there is insufficient evidence to indict.
Yes, Mueller has no evidence against Trump, but is trying to help the Democrats anyway.

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Mueller tries to please the Trump-haters

It is amazing that anyone ever took special counsel Robert Mueller seriously. He has now made his final statement as special counsel:
I do not believe it is appropriate for me to speak further about the investigation or to comment on the actions of the Justice Department or Congress. And it's for that reason, I will not be taking questions today, as well. ...

there were multiple, systematic efforts to interfere in our election, and that allegation deserves the attention of every American.
So every American needs to know about this, but he is refusing to testify!

He is clear that the "allegation" refers to a grand jury allegation that is not expected to ever see open court. Mueller and his team are refusing to say whether or not they agree with the allegation.

And what is that grand jury allegation? Mueller uses passive voice, so it is a little vague, but it is mainly that WikiLeaks timed its email releases to embarrass Hillary Clinton.

Yes, that was obvious to everyone in 2016. Julian Assange and Hillary Clinton are known to hate each other. He said that he expected her to win the election, and wanted to expose her misdeeds.

We still need to know how this was turned into a coup attempt against President Donald Trump.
And as set forth in the report, after that investigation if we had had confidence that the president clearly did not commit a crime we would have said so.

We did not, however, make a determination as to whether the president did commit a crime.
So Mueller has no opinion about whether the president did or did not commit a crime, except that he did not have confidence that the president clearly did not commit a crime.

Okay, so Mueller spent 2 years and $50M looking for evidence of the president committing a crime, and did not find any, but is still not confident that the president clearly did not commit a crime.

Keep in mind that the Mueller report took an absurdly broad view of what can be considered obstruction of justice. For example, Mueller says it is a crime to conceal information from investigators, even if that information does not relate to any illegal activity. He also says it might be a crime to tweet that the investigation is a witch-hunt.

It is funny how Mueller goes out of his way to say that "Russian intelligence officers ... presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty", but he refuses to say the same about the American President.

This Mueller statement had nothing new.

Yes, President Trump was exonerated, even if Mueller prefers to state it differently.

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Elizabeth Warren’s Daffy Tax Proposal

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

Trailing in the polls, Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) tries to boost her presidential candidacy by proposing an unprecedented new tax. Dubbed the Ultra-Millionaire Tax, Warren would force wealthy households to hand over 2% of their net worth above $50 million, plus an extra 1% on their assets above $1 billion — and not just once, but annually.

Consider how Warren’s UMT would affect a billionaire whose wealth consists of buildings like Trump Tower, the president’s 58-story landmark. The government would confiscate initially two floors per year, and would eventually own most of the building, which is what socialists want.

You might think that a wealth tax should be spent on developing infrastructure or paying down the national debt, but that is not what Warren has in mind. Her idea is to spend the extra money on undesirable programs of no lasting value, such as universal child care in government daycare centers even though most parents prefer to care for their own children at home.

Like other proposals to soak the rich with higher taxes, revenue from a wealth tax would fall far short of projections, as the rich inevitably find ways to conceal their property and shelter their income. Tax hikes result in lower economic growth, which reduces tax receipts for the government, and could actually decrease tax revenue as economist Arthur Laffer famously showed Ronald Reagan in the 1980s.

A wealth tax might begin with the super-rich, but it surely won’t stay there. The same sort of trickery was used to slip through the federal income tax, which ultimately soaked the middle class more than the rich.

Opponents of the income tax in 1913 argued that the initially small tax, once it was allowed, would increase to become a massive burden on workers. They were ridiculed for predicting what did occur, as the marginal income tax rates for average Americans rose far above what most expected.

What began in 1913 as a modest 1% income tax, on people making less than today’s equivalent of a half-million dollars a year, inevitably increased through withholding to become a massive burden on working Americans. Is that a mistake anyone wants to repeat by allowing a federal tax on property?

The Framers of our Constitution included safeguards against abusive taxation by the newly created United States government. George Washington, Alexander Hamilton, Benjamin Franklin, James Madison, and the other Framers supported a strong federal government, but they limited its taxing power.

The Framers gave us a Constitution that prevents Congress from directly taxing property, such as real estate. The Constitution allows such taxation only if it is apportioned based on population, which means it cannot be based solely on wealth.

Thanks to the genius of our founding fathers, the United States grew in wealth and prosperity faster than any country in the history of the world. For more than two centuries, the U.S. Supreme Court has invalidated attempts to tax people based on their wealth, and the Sixteenth Amendment had to be ratified before Congress could tax personal income without apportionment.

In the 2012 Obamacare case, NFIB v. Sebelius, Chief Justice John Roberts and the entire liberal wing of the Supreme Court reaffirmed the Constitution’s limitation on direct taxation of property. The Supreme Court has “continued to consider taxes on personal property to be direct taxes” which must be apportioned by population, Roberts wrote for the Court.

The Obamacare ruling confirmed that the Constitution remains a bulwark against the fundamental tenet of socialism, which is to redistribute wealth from the rich to the poor. Even the famous French economist Thomas Piketty, who endorsed Warren’s tax plan, admitted: “I realize that this is unconstitutional, but constitutions have been changed throughout history.”

A President Warren may not be able to change the written Constitution, so she has another plan to get her socialist tax implemented if she is elected. Along with other Democratic presidential candidates, Warren has endorsed a plan to pack the Supreme Court with progressive justices who share her political views.

The Democrats’ plan to expand the Supreme Court would be the same kind of politicized court-packing that Franklin Delano Roosevelt unsuccessfully sought in 1937. It would end adherence to the Constitution as written by our Founders and would deprive Americans of the constitutional protection against direct taxation by the federal government.

Warren had no difficulty in finding some law professors, including her former colleague Laurence Tribe, to pretend that her socialist scheme is constitutional. But many of those same law professors also wrongly insist that there is a constitutional right to abortion, yet no constitutional right to carry a gun for self-defense.
Warren is pandering to the left-wing of the Democratic Party with her daffy tax proposal. It is socialism in disguise, and voters should not be fooled.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

The Battle for Pennsylvania Begins

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

President Trump and Joe Biden just held dueling rallies in Pennsylvania, but the difference in enthusiasm was striking. After Biden’s campaign kickoff on Saturday drew a respectable crowd to a cordoned-off thoroughfare in downtown Philadelphia, Trump attracted thousands more to a raucous rally on Monday inside a hangar at the Williamsport Regional Airport.

Sandwiched symbolically between the two presidential front-runners was Sunday morning’s planned destruction of Bethlehem Steel’s empty former headquarters, which for 50 years was the largest building in Pennsylvania’s Lehigh Valley. Trump wants to rebuild America’s manufacturing might in Pennsylvania and elsewhere, while Biden’s platform is to forget about how China has been eating America’s lunch due to bipartisan policies of globalism and free trade.

At Trump’s rally, attendees cheered as the President recognized a supporter who wore a suit designed like a red brick wall and carried a sign that said “Build me.” The elderly Biden, by contrast, was low energy and low-key, oddly pleading for “unity” while denouncing Trump for “division.”

Biden’s rivals, though, are even less credible. “Beto” O’Rourke, who should be called “Beta” like an unfinished app, has dropped like a stone after launching his campaign by saying he was “born to run.”

“Born to lose” is more like it. Losing a Senate race despite having money to burn is not exactly a stepping-stone to the presidency, and “Beta” looks like a guy with zero chance of defeating the formidable Trump.

Then there is Senator Kamala Harris, a multi-racial female who has positioned herself as the most “diverse” candidate in the Democratic field. The former California attorney general, who married another California lawyer at age 50 and has no children, would be a tough sell to the ex-steelworkers and coal miners in Pennsylvania.

Kamala Harris has a radical plan to shift wages from gritty blue collar jobs typically undertaken by men, to soft, safe jobs typically filled by women. To overcome the purported pay gap between men and women, she would hit companies with fines of 1% of their profits for every 1% in the wage difference between the more dangerous male jobs and the more comfortable women’s jobs.

Her proposed interference with the jobs market includes nearly every bad idea opposed by Phyllis Schlafly, all in one package. The theory of “comparable worth” was discredited in the 1980s, but Senator Harris has renamed it “equal pay” in order to falsely imply that men and women are being paid unequally for the same work.

Harris figures that her fines would be heavy enough to generate $180 billion over 10 years, money that would be used to pay employees who take family and medical leave. Companies would be on their own to cope with the burden of hiring, training and supervising temporary replacement workers and then laying them off after the employee returns to work.

Like other socialist schemes being floated by Democratic candidates, Sen. Harris’s harmful proposal would bring the Trump jobs boom to a screeching halt. It would be particularly hurtful to men working blue-collar jobs who are rightly compensated for the higher risk and unpleasant working conditions they endure.

It is no fun working in road construction during the hot summer, as any driver can observe from the comfort of an air-conditioned car. Construction workers, who are almost entirely men, deserve to be paid more than easy jobs in plush air-conditioned facilities, which are taken mostly by women.

Equal pay for equal work has been required by federal law since 1963, and any woman who is paid less for doing the same work can hit the jackpot by suing over it. But equal pay for unequal work is unAmerican, and has been properly rejected by Congress and the federal courts.

Logging, roofing, collecting garbage, and installing power lines are difficult, unsafe jobs that result in greater compensation than secretarial jobs where the biggest risk is suffering a paper cut. Nothing prevents a woman from trying to wield a jackhammer on a hard concrete pavement, but few women want to.

Senator Harris whines that “women who work full time are paid just 80 cents, on average, for every dollar paid to men.” But many women opt out of the workforce to raise children, so they will make less due to less job-related experience.

The steelworkers and coal miners who built Pennsylvania were mostly men. Pennsylvanians want those jobs back, but Sen. Harris’s demand that men make no more money than women will not create these jobs for men.

Billy Joel’s song “Allentown” was really about the collapse of the steel economy in nearby Bethlehem, but Allentown is easier for lyrics to rhyme with. President Trump promises to revive that Pennsylvania economy, and the immense crowds there show that he is the real music to their ears.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

B-Team Dems Can Thank Hillary

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

The six major women candidates for the Democratic presidential nomination were supposed to be thriving by now. Senators Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, Kirsten Gillibrand, and Amy Klobuchar were thought to be the cream of the crop.

Instead, the Democratic "B-Team" has dominated the field: Biden, Bernie, Beto, Buttigieg and, one might add, Bezos in his role as the owner of the Democrats’ daily newspaper, The Washington Post. The weakest of them all, Joe Biden, is ostensibly running away with the nomination.

Why the domination by white men when many thought 2020 would be the year of women and minorities? The B-Team should thank Hillary for that.

Far from being a backlash against President Trump, the next election is shaping up as a backlash against Hillary Clinton and even Barack Obama. Grassroots Democrats are rebelling against the relentless liberal media pressure to support a woman or diversity candidate for president.

A record-breaking 22 Democrats have announced their bids for the presidential nomination. With plenty of liberal billionaires anxious to waste their money on trying to defeat President Trump next year, there is abundant campaign cash to go around.

Trump is fine with facing off against Biden next fall, and even seems to encourage it by declaring "SleepyCreepy Joe" to be the presumptive nominee. Biden repeatedly failed miserably in his prior races for president, plagued by a habit of dishonesty and making a fool of himself.

Biden has never attained even 2% of the vote despite running twice for president, first in 1988 and then twenty years later in 2008. In 1988, he pulled out after a series of scandals involving plagiarism and dishonesty, which the media try to downplay although anyone can read about them on the internet.

Biden’s scandals were not merely that he copied the liberal British politician Neil Kinnock’s speech without giving him credit, but that Biden also misrepresented his own academic credentials on multiple occasions. In law school he once received an “F” for plagiarism, too, but was then allowed to redo the course.

The second time Biden ran for president he failed just as badly, garnering only 1% in the Iowa caucuses in 2008 before pulling out. While there are many presidents who have won after being the runner-up in prior primaries, it is difficult to find an example of someone who fared so poorly but then won later.

If elected, Biden would turn 78 before Inauguration Day, and would serve half his term while in his 80s. There is nothing youthful about his political positions either, which are a contradictory hodgepodge to which the base of the Democratic Party is mostly opposed.

Despite all this, early polling suggests that many Democrats think Biden is better than the leftist, even socialist, alternatives. The remainder of the B-Team is even less electable than Biden.

Bernie Sanders, for example, spent his honeymoon in the communist Soviet Union, which is not exactly the kind of passion that commends one to become president of the United States. But many thought Hillary stole the nomination from Bernie last time, only to disappoint Democrats in the general election against Trump.

Then there is Pete Buttigieg, the mayor of South Bend, Indiana, who grew up as the only son of an immigrant Marxist professor. Although technically not a “red diaper baby,” which is a term for the child of a member of the Communist Party, Buttigieg is a second-generation opponent of our free market system that has brought Americans so much prosperity.

So where are the women candidates who thought they would lead this race? Elizabeth Warren is one of the women far behind the B-Team in the polling, and now she desperately tries to get attention by bashing Fox News while refusing to do a town hall sponsored by Fox as her rivals have.

Warren absurdly tweeted that “Fox News is a hate-for-profit racket that gives a megaphone to racists and conspiracists—it’s designed to turn us against each other, risking life & death consequences, to provide cover for the corruption that’s rotting our government and hollowing out our middle class.”

Next is Kirsten Gillibrand, who blames “gender bias” for her poor performance in polling of Democrats. “I think people are generally biased against women. I think also biased against young women,” she pompously declared.

The real reason is not “gender bias,” but a backlash by Democrats against Hillary Clinton for taking them down the road to a crushing defeat in 2016. In 2018, other feminist Democrat senators also lost, in humiliating landslides, in North Dakota and Missouri.

Instead of blaming “gender bias,” the Democratic women might instead blame the well-justified fear of giving the nomination to another radical feminist in the mold of Hillary Clinton.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on

Monday, May 13, 2019

NY Times complains about Russian TV

The NY Times reports:
Later that year, the national security division of the Justice Department forced RT America, formerly Russia Today, to register as a foreign agent.

Moscow’s goal, experts say, is to destabilize the West by undermining trust in democratic leaders, institutions and political life. To that end, the RT network amplifies voices of dissent, to sow discord and widen social divides. It gives the marginal a megaphone and traffics in false equivalence. Earlier campaigns took aim at fracking, vaccination and genetically modified organisms. One show called designer tomatoes “good-looking poison.”

The network is now applying its playbook against 5G by selectively reporting the most sensational claims, and by giving a few marginal opponents of wireless technology a conspicuous new forum.
And how is that different from the NY Times, Wash. Post, CNN, etc?

Every day the supposedly-American news media prints and broadcasts goofy conspiracy theories about President Trump, and seeks to amplify voices of dissent, to sow discord and widen social divides. I get the impression that they are determined to destroy Western Civilization.

The Russians have been putting out anti-American propaganda for decades. For example, Wikipedia reports:
Operation INFEKTION was a disinformation campaign run by the KGB in the 1980s to spread information that the United States invented HIV/AIDS[2] as part of a biological weapons research project at Fort Detrick, Maryland. According to U.S. State Department, the Soviet Union used it to undermine the United States' credibility, foster anti-Americanism, isolate America abroad, and create tensions between host countries and the U.S. over the presence of American military bases (which were often portrayed as the cause of AIDS outbreaks in local populations).[3]
I am not defending Russian disinformation. They may have supported and propped up an assortment of leftist and evil causes.

But the American news media, Hollywood, and tech platforms are 95% anti-Trump. They are systematically censoring and de-platforming right-wingers. They would eradicate all right-wing opinions, if it were not for the First Amendment.

I think it is refreshing that RT broadcasts info that it is not controlled by the same leftist groupthink that controls the NY Times.

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Congress as Inspector Clouseau

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

Inspector Clouseau was the bumbling, incompetent investigator in the Pink Panther series of film comedies, originally played to immense amusement by Peter Sellers and later by Steve Martin. These movies should be mandatory viewing by Democrats.

The images of congressmen eating Kentucky Fried Chicken were designed to cause ridicule of the Trump Administration for not attending a committee hearing, but the photos had the opposite effect. Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee have made fools of themselves by trying to be investigators.

The House of Representatives has a constitutional purpose to initiate legislation. All spending bills are required by the Constitution to originate only in the House, so they have real work they should be tending to.

Yet they would rather grandstand and try to attract media cameras for their never-ending harassment of Trump officials. After Attorney General Bill Barr stood up to the amateur investigators by declining to appear for one of their circus-like hearings, the House Judiciary Committee is next going after former White House Counsel Don McGahn.

Nope, the White House has properly stated in response to an improper demand for documents from McGahn about Trump. "The White House records remain legally protected from disclosure under long-standing constitutional principles because they implicate significant Executive Branch confidentiality interests and executive privilege," wrote Trump’s current general counsel to McGahn’s attorney.

The fishing expedition by the Democrats against Trump has dragged on for more than two years, and House Democrats want to pick up where the failed Mueller investigation left off. But after Mueller wasted tens of millions of dollars hunting for Russian collusion that was never there, the House should not be pouring more time and money down that bottomless pit.

The Constitution does not grant any authority for the House to issue subpoenas or enforce them. Instead, Congress has claimed for itself power to subpoena individuals, but it still has no ability to require compliance by them.

Congress must instead rely on the Trump Administration to enforce congressional subpoenas, which no one expects Trump’s Attorney General Bill Barr to do. Congress takes the risk that its bluster about demanding compliance with its subpoenas will be simply ignored by Trump officials, or even laughed at.

Some have suggested that Congress use its Capitol Police to try to arrest Attorney General Barr for not showing at the hearing. While that would be entertaining drama, House Democrats lack the guts to spark the public backlash such a stunt would cause.

Congress could bring a lawsuit against McGahn or others in an attempt to compel them to comply with a subpoena, but such litigation would take years to resolve. That would frustrate the goal of Democrats to try to embarrass Trump prior to the next presidential election.

The response by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to an improper demand by House Democrats for Trump’s tax returns was perfect. “The Supreme Court has held that the Constitution requires that Congressional information demands must reasonably serve a legitimate legislative purpose,” Mnuchin wrote in a terse, one-page letter to House Ways and Means Chairman Richard Neal (D-MA).

“The Committee’s request lacks a legitimate legislative purpose” and “the Department is therefore not authorized to disclose the requested returns” of Trump, Mnuchin added.

The flurry of additional subpoenas by Democrat-controlled committees in the House are likewise not for a legitimate legislative purpose. Mueller has already wasted years investigating imaginary Russian collusion, and that is a closed case at this point.

There is no ongoing legislative debate for which documents by McGahn or similar Trump advisers would be helpful. There is no testimony sought by Trump’s advisers as to their opinions on draft bills which these committees are considering.

To the contrary, House Democrats have demonstrated that they do not even want to work with the Trump Administration on most legislative issues. Instead, they want to continue to bully and harass him, but they are picking on the wrong guy for that.

President Trump, more than any prior president, has already proven his willingness to take issues to the Supreme Court as needed to vindicate his positions. All signs are that there is a majority on the High Court on Trump’s side on matters of greatest concern to him.

It is obvious that the House Democrats want Trump’s tax returns not to assist the House in drafting tax legislation, but to disclose his returns publicly in order to seek to embarrass Trump. This is reminiscent of how President Nixon supposedly sought to use the IRS against his political adversaries, which Democrats have heavily criticized.

A more recent movie comedy about amateur investigators was entitled “Get a Clue.” The fried-chicken-eating House Democrats might take that title to heart and spend more time on their constitutional purpose, such as securing our southern border.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work. These columns are also posted on