TGIF: Congress Is Back. Let the Insanity Begin.

Kevin McCarthy needs more friends. Cardi B talks stagflation. Jordan Peterson resists re-education. And so much more.

Happy Friday. The endless California rain means everything outside our door is a mud sty. But I’ve been long prepared for this. My workdays (11:00 A.M. to 11:45 A.M.) were already spent in bed. TGIF.

→ Kevin McCarthy needs more friends: The Republicans, now in control of the House, are trying to complete a fairly basic thing which is to choose their next speaker. It’s not going well. 

Longtime California Congressman Kevin McCarthy is the obvious would-be winner but he can’t quite scrounge together enough votes. Eleven times–eleven!—McCarthy has been put up for a vote. And ten times he has fallen a few votes short. Why? The right flank of the party hates him. He is now reportedly offering his dissenters deep concessions: More members of the Freedom Caucus joining the House Rules Committee and the ability for just one irate member of the lower chamber to call a whole new vote to oust the speaker at any time (currently requires half the GOP). 

Mainstream media coverage of the situation is basically just the word LOL typed out over and over, so I’ve had trouble understanding what is actually happening. One good read is in the American Conservative: “For anti-McCarthy Republicans, it’s not about finding a better alternative. It’s about proving they can and will hold a Republican leader accountable.” 

Maybe. Perhaps the bigger problem facing the nationalist-populist wing of the GOP is, nearly six years after Donald Trump took office, it has little idea of how to articulate a vision for the America it wants to build. (Consider Rep. Dan Crenshaw’s justifiable rant directed at the anti-McCarthy holdouts.)

Michigan Libertarian and former Congressman Justin Amash wrote of McCarthy: “He’s unprincipled, dishonest, vindictive, and focused solely on gaining and maintaining power.” 

To get this kind of endless in-fighting you used to have to go to a socialist potluck. 

→ Amazon to lay off 18,000: There’s a new word I’m learning. The word is stagflation. It is, per Fortune, “when a stalling economy, high inflation, and rising unemployment all collide.” In other words: the toxic brew of inflation caused by the Biden administration’s endless, blind Covid stimulus mixed with American businesses not growing fast enough. The Sherwin-Williams color of the year might be Terra, but according to Bloomberg, “Stagflation Will Rule 2023.” 

And so into the maw go 18,000 people’s jobs at Amazon. The layoff is hitting the corporate teams (versus warehouse workers), and it represents about 5% of that workforce. 

→ Cardi B for Speaker? The hip hop star didn’t use the word stagflation, but she captured the crux of it on a Twitter rant, calling for “anybody that is responsible for these f****** prices to put that s*** the f*** down.” The rapper noted that her lettuce used to be $2, and it is now $7. Despite her $62 million net worth, Cardi “can only imagine what middle class people or people in the hood is m***** f***** thinking, so yes I'm going to say something.” TGIF stands with Cardi B.

→ Latest from the Twitter Files: The Twitter Files—internal documents, emails and chats involving the past Twitter regime—continue to show how the U.S. government sought to silence its critics. The latest, from Matt Taibbi, shows that Adam Schiff, a Democrat and the head of the House Intelligence Committee, specifically asked the social network to ban a journalist, Paul Sperry. Even Twitter employees, usually perfectly happy to censor the politically inconvenient, balked at this

→ Wait . . . now Democrats are busing migrants to New York? Gov. Jared Polis, the governor of Colorado, is busing migrants to New York City. And New York mayor Eric Adams is not happy about it, saying: “This is just unfair for local governments to have to take on this national obligation.”

Recall not three months ago, when busing migrants to New York was considered outrageous, potentially human trafficking, worthy of huge splashy headlines and endless features about the suffering these trips were causing. When the buses come from Colorado, surely the response will be the same? Of course not.

I just checked, and there is not a single story on The New York Times homepage right now. Polis describes his busing program to NYC versus the essentially identical Republican busing program to NYC as “night and day.” Because, Polis says: “We are respecting the agency and the desires of migrants who are passing through Colorado. We want to help them reach their final destination, wherever that is.” 

→ We’re all going to be sent to New Jersey for re-education: Two bits of news from New Jersey public schools. First, masking is back for a lot of students. Once educators got ahold of the mask and the sweet quiet of social distancing, they apparently couldn’t get enough. Now, with various respiratory viruses ripping through schools (in large part because of children’s weakened immune systems from Covid isolation), various districts are bringing back masks

The much bigger update this week is the New Jersey governor signed into law a state-wide requirement for all K-12 students every year to undergo “media literacy” training because “democracy is under attack.” I cannot believe the disinfo mafia has now gotten into state-wide requirements. Here’s Gov. Phil Murphy: 

“Our democracy remains under sustained attack through the proliferation of disinformation that is eroding the role of truth in our political and civic discourse. It is our responsibility to ensure our nation’s future leaders are equipped with the tools necessary to identify fact from fiction.”

The flashcards for these classes will be easy to make. One side: Substack. Other side: Bad. 

→ Another fantastically insane fake Native American: I’m beginning to think that any high profile Native American influencer should be assumed to be a white girl with a spray tan. The latest Pretendian, who is quite literally a white girl with a spray tan: Kay LeClaire. A major leader in the Indigenous movement, LeClaire has claimed Métis, Oneida, Anishinaabe, Haudenosaunee, Cuban and Jewish heritage. She was a co-owner of giige, a “Queer and Native American-owned tattoo shop and artist collective in Madison, WI.” She was a community leader-in-Residence at UW-Madison's School of Human Ecology and was part of the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women Task Force. She has had copious speaking engagements, and she even led a name-change-mob, forcing the local music venue Winnebego to change its name for Indigenous sensitivity (it was named after its street). She sold crafts and clothes, all while pretending to be a Native American (that’s a federal crime, by the way). Obviously she also claims to be Two-Spirit, a sort of nonbinary identification long-practiced in Native cultures. 

She is in fact German, Swedish and French Canadian. An anonymous blogger identified the fraud.

On a related note, it’s a good time to read this article about how the official “Native American” population in the U.S. between the years 2010 and 2020 . . . doubled. Pretty soon every high school senior will be Native American. Little Harrison and Haisley will be touring the Princeton campus like, “why, yes, this is my ancestral feathered headdress, thanks for asking.” 

→ Jordan Peterson under Canadian review: The Canadians are trying to take Jordan Peterson’s psychology license. The College of Psychologists of Ontario which governs the profession up north, is demanding that he apologize for various comments like calling Elliot Page “she,” calling Prime Minister Trudeau a “prick,” and commenting on a plus-size Sports Illustrated model: “Sorry. Not Beautiful.” 

Here’s what the College had to say: “The comments at issue appear to undermine the public trust in the profession as a whole, and raise questions about your ability to carry out your responsibilities as a psychologist.” 

Now, is Mr. Peterson the man I personally would choose to see for therapy? No. But most therapists in my neighborhood are demisexual faeries who think therapy is white supremacy and happiness is impossible to achieve until the revolution comes. I wouldn’t see them either. There’s a great Wall Street Journal defense of Peterson here.

Of course this would never happen here in the U.S. . . . 

→ Of course this is happening in the U.S.: A new law in California paves the way for doctors to lose their license for “dissemination of misinformation or disinformation related to the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus.” That sort of behavior is now considered “unprofessional conduct.” 

Longtime TGIF readers know my stance, but for all the newcomers: Misinformation and disinformation are real phenomena. But most of the time these days the words are political terms applied to any information a ruling clique doesn’t like. Often, it’s used by progressive journalists who want to see various voices censored on social media. 

In the case of Covid, many, many very real facts were considered mis-and-disinfo. Like: The vaccine does not prevent transmission of Covid. That was considered fake news, verboten. Had this law been in place you would have lost your medical license for saying it. In that case, people saw with their own bodies that, although vaccinated, they were very much coughing. But thanks to this new law that muffles doctors, who knows what we won’t know going forward. 

→ Vaccine-skeptical, sit this one out: When Damar Hamlin, a football safety for the Buffalo Bills, got hit in the chest and collapsed on the field, who was ready to jump in and opine but the vax skeptics. On Tucker Carlson, there was speculation that Hamlin was suffering vaccine-induced myocarditis. 

Obviously there are vaccine side effects that were under-reported and lied about, but that does not mean anyone with an injury or anyone who dies young was killed by Pfizer. Just like progressives see a twinge in their ankles as #longcovid, the conservative vax skeptic movement is a hammer looking for nails. 

In very good news, Damar Hamlin is stable and seems to be making a recovery. 

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