In past writings I have sometimes reviewed Democrats’ tendency to use distractions to divert media attention away from certain policies and actions which they prefer to keep on the down-low. The Obama administration used the tactic frequently, starting with the curious incident of Tareq and Michaele Salahi – the flashy couple who apparently crashed a White House state dinner held for Indian glitterati on Nov. 25, 2009. The Salahis evidently had the temerity to approach a White House gala with no written invitation in hand. Few people would attempt such a thing. So why did they do it?
Mainstream media obsessed over the incident for weeks. Reporters concentrated on the “shiny object” of the incident – i.e., Michaele Salahi, a good-looking blonde who made the most of her new celebrity status by posting pictures on Facebook, signing a book contract, and knocking people over to get to a TV-camera, whenever one showed up. Reporters speculated endlessly on the Salahis’ ambitions. They repeatedly led the nightly news. And they answered a summons to appear before a Congressional committee by saying, “No thanks.” Did you know you could do that? (No? Neither did I.) Very curious.
Ultimately, rumors emerged that the “gate-crashing” stunt was a planned event designed to produce obsessive media-coverage – which it certainly did. For two weeks, print- and broadcast-media were entirely occupied by reports about the “lady in the red dress” and her escort. Photos showed them posing with the president and the vice-president, obviously on familiar terms. (In one photo, Joe Biden had his arm around the lissome Mrs. Salahi.) The Salahis were more famous than the Indian dignitaries for which the state dinner was ostensibly held, but we can’t name a single one. (Is this a great country, or what?)
Well, so what? Where’s the harm? Can’t the media have a little “fun” once in a while?
The harm was that valuable broadcast-time and print-space were wasted on a trivial incident contrived by an administration that saw value in diverting media- and public-attention away from momentous policy-initiatives then under way in the government. While reporters chased after the Salahis, we heard little about the Senate’s debate of a bill that would affect 1/6th of the nation’s economy and fundamentally change the way we would receive medical care and conduct our lives. Speaker of the House Pelosi promised that we would learn what it contained after it was passed. Only after it was too late did we realize how little we knew about the Affordable Care Act (a.k.a. “Obamacare”).
This brings us to today, when the two-month-old Biden administration is exhibiting their appreciation of the distraction-strategy by expanding it. Instead of producing just one trivial distraction, they are launching a blizzard of non-trivial distractions. Most will attract public attention in their own right, while they divert media- and public-attention away from issues of critical moment that are quietly making their way through the Congress. For my readers’ benefit I’ll summarize several of these distraction-issues below, followed by brief descriptions of the more momentous issues being shrouded by the distractions.
(1) Don Cuomo. A year ago, NY Governor Andrew Cuomo (a.k.a. The Godfather of New York) was riding high. He was building a rep as the country’s premier manager of the COVID pandemic, and Media-types were wishing that he was in the White House instead of the “buffoon” with the orange hair. The Guv wrote a book chronicling his expertise in fighting the virus; The International Academy of Television Arts and Sciences awarded him an Emmy for his “masterful” COVID-19 press briefings; and The Great Mentioner was touting him as presidential timber for 2024. The Kid was on his way.
What a difference a year makes. Today Governor Cuomo’s COVID-rep is in the dumpster, following New York officials’ disclosures that his orders to send elderly COVID-infected patients to nursing homes resulted in 15,000+ deaths – some 10,000 more than the count which he had deceptively released.
And now, at the least-opportune moment, a half-dozen women have come forward to accuse Mr. Cuomo of inappropriate sexual conduct while they worked for him. Calls for his resignation are growing louder by the day, with many of his old Democrat comrades joyfully piling on. So loud are the demands for his scalp that Republicans haven’t even bothered to join in. Even (Hair-sniffing) Joe Biden has said Mr. Cuomo should resign if the accusations are true. Reporters are beside themselves with delight.
Will he resign? Or be impeached? I doubt it. (He’ll make ‘em an offer they can’t refuse.) New Yorkers might care about what happens, but how important is this to the rest of the country? It’s sucking all the air out of the news-room, and no one is reporting about anything else. It’s a perfect distraction.
(2) Transgender Wars. One of President Biden’s first executive orders dictated that all persons must be treated according to the gender they have chosen. Biological men who claim they’re women must be allowed to participate in activities reserved for women. This includes women’s athletic competitions, where controversy is already boiling over transgendered men winning women’s track-and-field contests. Some of those wins by biological men kept women from getting college athletic scholarships they should have had. Lawsuits are being pressed by some women who have had this happen to them.
This is an expansion of the “potté-wars” which arose during the Obama presidency, when transgendered men started trying to use women’s restrooms and locker-rooms. I’ll risk being denounced as “transphobic” by calling this absolutely the dumbest thing I’ve seen in nearly 70 years of observing politics and culture. I couldn’t believe public officials took it seriously, but here we go again.
Some men might welcome a woman in the men’s restroom, but what normal woman would want to be there? In the other direction, I don’t believe women will allow men in the ladies’ room – no matter how many nitwit officials or “girlie men” come out of the woodwork or how many executive orders Trans-Joe issues. I saw a video-clip which showed a man in drag trying to enter a ladies’ room. He was ejected on every one of a half-dozen comical tries, with a few frills and blessing added to speed him on his way. (I had no idea women had such rich vocabularies. One lady kicked him in the butt, too.)
Biden administration insiders, including the president himself, must have known that his transgender order would produce a huge uproar across the country, as it certainly has. Numerous states are busily enacting laws which contravene the president’s executive order, and both conservative and leftist media organs have covered the issue, wall-to-wall. It’s non-trivial, but it’s also a perfect distraction.
(3) Biden’s health. Two months into Mr. Biden’s presidency, even his media-allies have started to notice that the guy they expected to restore “civility” and “normalcy” to the presidency might not be all there. Even Mr. Biden, himself, doesn’t seem to know exactly where he is sometimes. His teleprompter-speeches are often halting and uncertain. He mangles his sentences. His inner circle makes sure that he takes no unscripted questions. And he has still not held a wide-open press conference – a non-trivial fact for reporters who earn their pay by covering the country’s chief executive. Historians say no president has ever gone this long after his inauguration without presiding over a press conference.
So noticeable has Mr. Biden’s failure to mix it up with reporters become, that it is now a hot topic on both mainstream and conservative news organs. (It’s coverage of a non-event.) Can Joe really make it through his full term? Will the 25th Amendment be invoked to remove him? And what will a Kamala Harris presidency be like, if he goes? The speculation is endless. It’s another wonderful conflict for the media to chase – not trivial, but a perfect distraction.
(4) Recall. Another conflict-issue that reporters are having great fun chasing is the campaign to recall California Governor Gavin Newsome – a faithful Democrat who trashed his state’s economy to defeat Mr. Trump. Or maybe he locked everything down because he really believed he had to do it to fend off the virus. Whatever the case, he finally tipped the boat over by shutting down a thousand miles of beaches. (Dude! Are you kidding me?)
That did it. It turns out that Californians really don’t like anyone telling them what they should or shouldn’t do, especially if it involves the beach. (Who knew?) So a recall effort was almost guaranteed. You could ask Gray Davis, California’s 37th governor, who was recalled a few months into his second term, in 2003, and replaced by Actor Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Gov. Newsome is naturally sweating bullets over the recall. Activists have gathered 2 million petition-signatures – well over the 1.5 million needed to put the recall question on statewide ballot. The Newsome camp will try to disqualify enough signatures to stop the effort, but no one knows if that will work. California is so blue that Democrats didn’t have to steal the presidential election. Ironically, this might mean that they won’t have the expertise needed to keep Mr. Newsom in office by cheating. It’s another localized issue that’s working as a distraction at the national level.
(5) The Insurrection. Democrats have had a marvelous time for the past two months, posturing and pontificating about what they call the “Trump armed insurrection” of January 6th. On that day a few hundred unarmed persons of unknown political persuasion stormed the Capitol building in an obviously planned incursion. Democrats in the House of Representatives immediately impeached President Trump for treason. An unconstitutional trial was conducted in the Senate after Mr. Trump had left office. (It failed to “convict” him.) Politicians, pundits and reporters have continued to devote much coverage to the Capitol riot and its aftermath. It’s another perfect distraction.
I present a brief review (in no particular order) of significant Democrat-agenda issues that are hiding behind the distractions. If enacted, they will radically change the country’s composition, morality, electoral security, and economic structure.
(1) Immigration. People who watch and read conservative news outlets know that our southern border is in complete chaos. Over 100,000 illegal aliens a month are pouring into our country, with little or no official opposition to their entry. People are swimming across the Rio Grande and climbing over the border wall that was partially built during President Trump’s term.
President Biden has promised free medical care, education and economic security to any who can get to our border, so they are flocking here in irresistible numbers. Unaccompanied minor children are being transported to holding facilities in various parts of the country, including Fort Lee, Virginia.
Immigration officials have recently admitted that 108 COVID-infected illegals were released into Texas. And the National Sheriff’s Association estimates that 50% of illegals trying to enter the country are infected with the COVID-19 virus. (If you object to any of this, you’re obviously a racist.)
A child could see that Biden’s “open borders” policy is the key to the Democrats’ plan to stock the country with new Democrat-voters. A million illegals coming in each year could turn Texas blue. It is a very serious situation.
(2) Abortion. Democrats plan to pass new legislation to overturn the Hyde Amendment. This is a legislative provision that bars the use of federal funds to pay for abortion, except to save the life of the woman, or if the pregnancy arises from incest or rape. Before the Hyde Amendment took effect in 1980, an estimated 300,000 abortions were performed annually using taxpayer funds. Democrats also hope to enact new laws which will supersede various state laws that limit access to abortion, including laws which prohibit the post-birth killing of a child who has survived abortion. This would move the nation’s morality into a ghastly, Nazi-esque direction too terrible to contemplate.
(3) Voting. On March 8th the House of Representatives passed HR 1 – the “For the People Act.” It addresses voter access, election integrity, election security, political spending, and ethics for the three branches of government. Specifically, the 800-page bill –
- Expands voter registration and voting access, and limits removing voters from voter rolls; this includes mandatory mail-in voting in all states;
- Provides for states to establish independent, nonpartisan redistricting commissions;
- Federalizes voting by establishing provisions related to election security, including –
- sharing intelligence information with state election officials,
- protecting the security of the voter rolls,
- supporting states in securing their election systems,
- developing a national strategy to protect the security and integrity of U.S. democratic institutions,
- establishing a National Commission to Protect United States Democratic Institutions, and other provisions to improve the cybersecurity of election systems.
- Addresses campaign spending by –
- expanding the ban on foreign nationals contributing to or spending on elections,
- expanding disclosure rules pertaining to organizations spending money during elections, campaign advertisements, and online platforms,
- revising disclaimer requirements for political advertising;
- Establishes an alternative campaign funding system for certain federal offices, including federal matching of small contributions for qualified candidates;
- Establishes provisions related to ethics in all three branches of government, including a code of ethics for federal judges and justices;
- Prohibits Members of the House from serving on the board of a for-profit entity;
- Expands enforcement of regulations governing foreign agents;
- Establishes additional conflict-of-interest and ethics provisions for federal employees and the White House.
- Requires candidates for President and Vice President to submit 10 years of tax returns.
All that is the official summary. Sounds pretty good? Vox News explains that the bill would:
- Add new requirements that would weaken restrictive voter ID laws;
- Create an automatic voter registration program;
- Expand early and mail-in voting options;
- Restore voting rights for former felons.
(4) Socialism. In an article on this site last summer, I called socialism the “energizer bunny” of American politics.1 No matter how often writers and economists detail the epic failures of this systemically flawed construct, it keeps coming back like a bad penny. I won’t go over that ground again, but it’s worth noting that the leftist gang now running our federal government is quite determined to convert us to the socialist model. They won’t use the actual word, but they’ll –
- Devalue our currency (by distributing trillions in borrowed money);
- Ruin millions of people financially (by closing down businesses and creating inflation);
- Degrade the motivation to work and accumulate wealth by levying high taxes; and
- Make a large bloc of voters dependent on government.
There’s more to it than that, but these are just the first moves. Our national debt of $30 trillion is nearly twice our Gross Domestic Product, and our new leaders are poised to dish out trillions more. Meanwhile, Big Media are obsessing over $1400 COVID-relief checks.
We’re on our way.